Wanderings I (via Wanderlust)

Before Wanderlust, chop wood carry water. After Wanderlust, chop wood carry water.

Thankfully, we truly enjoy the process of building and shaping the event. Otherwise, it would be quite irrational to work 361 days for the sake of four. I have a little sticky on my desktop of the Patabi Jois quote "practice, practice, practice." I've (deferentially) crossed it out partially to read "process, process, process." I suppose it's really the same thing.  

That's where we at Wanderlust HQ are right now --- deep in the process. 

I went to go hear Robert (Bob)Thurman speak this past week. He is one of the foremost scholars on Tibet and Buddhism and teaches at my alma mater (and Schuyler's and Sean's) Columbia University. Bob spoke as part of a series at the Tibet House organized by Frank Lipman MD. Frank is an integrative doctor here in NYC exploring interesting ways to combine western and eastern medicine. I thoroughly encourage everyone to check him out.

Anyways, Bob rambles on in the most compelling way, dealing little gems of wisdom like nickel bags. They pass from his lips into the ether rather inconsequentially. I picked up on a little idiosyncrasy during the lecture. Bob punctuates his profound nuggets with a deep chortle as if he is making light of them. It's a charming habit and unconsciously self-deprecating - as if to say, "this piece of information is important but I am just a humble messenger." It's like the man who, when asked for directions, does not point. Instead the man takes his entire palm and slowly swoops it in the proper direction - as if ushering a guest into his home. Bob shares his wisdom graciously and with great mindfulness.

In Buddhism, one of the causes of personal suffering is tied to an incessant sense of selfhood and to endlessly clinging to the causes of what will make oneself happy or unhappy. One of the steps towards “enlightenment” is moving towards the ability to truly value the external perspective in equal proportion to your own. This is one of the things that I took away from Bob’s talk and I am trying to integrate into my own life.

What does this have to do with Wanderlust? God knows ;-)

Well … we are trying to build an event around your perspective. The unbelievable response to our post-event survey is a testament to how engaged this community is. The information was detailed and helpful. As we build curriculum, program teachers, music, food and experience, we are trying to do it through the eyes (and bodies) of the community. One thing that makes Wanderlust a truly unique event is that it is so participatory. You’re not just staring at a stage. We are finding fun ways to integrate the community into the fabric of the event beyond yoga and into performance and art. Prepare to be challenged in 2011.

We’ll be making some announcements about Wanderlust 2011 in mid-November. It’s an exciting time to be a part of this growing and engaged community. Must go now --- there is a cord of wood in conference room and the water cooler is empty.