Travel Memories: Living Up to Low Standards in Provence, France

Crystal Lynn Selfie in France

While in India, I spent a lot of time breathing and meditating. At times, my purpose for being there was confused, anxious and well, frightening. But I knew there was a reason for going.

The funniest thing is that with all that angst, with all the critters and the oppressive heat, I actually managed to find the one thing for which I went searching: Me. That’s right Me. Not the ego-driven me that has desires, a past and a future. But the quiet, peaceful, balanced me that loves silence and stillness. Ha! Whoda thunk that I would actually enjoy sitting still staring at a dot on the wall? Whoda thunk that I could ever enjoy eating without reading a book or having a good discussion??

Honestly, I am so full of Trust right now that I could combust into a million bits of stardust and be just fine with it. India is a magical place and has magical powers.

Now for a little secret about en-light-enment… When you learn to sit still with tons of flies, mosquitoes, ants and spiders and mice walking on you and your knees aching and your skin crawling and sweat pouring down your face, it is totally mind-blowingly easy to come to sit in a clean, insect free zone and be absolutely still and peaceful. Seriously. Try it out.

Go to a place that takes you waaay out of your comfort zone and force yourself to sit there as still as you can. Don’t worry that you fidget. Don’t let the critics tell you you aren’t doing it right because you swatted the fly and you keep scratching your crawling skin. Let them have their narrow perceptions and their useless opinions and you just do your absolute best. The thing that you probably won’t realize because you just ate a fly, is that you are actually creating immense change in your energetic field. Your ego is slowly dissolving (not dying. Dissolving. That is to say that your ego will scream really loud at first but the longer you stay, the more faint become the screams. Pretty soon, the ego becomes this little dude that asks your permission before he starts screaming. You have the right to deny him permission,) you are not quite as affected by the flies and mosquitoes as you were the month before, you accept that when you turn on the light in the bathroom, there will be scurrying and so you open the door and let the little ones run out (knowing full well that they are running into your room.) The point is that while you are living your life battling the environment and trying to gain control over your wayward mind, growth is happening in your entire being. Your mind is expanding, your connection to yourself is deepening, your hair is growing. Next thing you know, 58 days have passed and it is time to leave this place which has become your own private Idaho. You examine your feelings and you realize, gosh, you’re not so afraid any more. You have witnessed the miracle that a peaceful mind and the Principle of Allowance can produce. You realize that Breathing is more than just a method of getting oxygen to your cells, it gives, also, cosmic life. Breathing is Prana and Prana is a miracle worker. Gosh. There is so much to this awakening process. Much more than one blog post can hold.

Suffice it to say that… Well, suffice it to say that one can be in India Paradise on Monday and in France Paradise on Tuesday. And guess what! You can be in You Paradise at every moment. Did I have to go all the way to India and stay in a dumpy room in order to get Awakened? Yes, I did. I had been trying in Long Beach and Montreal and even Bali. But I was having no luck. If you can do it from your car or from the wine bar or from the comfort of your own home, then great! I am a person who needs to experience profound contrast in order to appreciate profound peace without falling asleep.

The thing is, I sooooo wanted to be free the burden of my ego’s dogma that I deliberately put myself in extreme discomfort. I knew that discomfort and pain were my salvation. There are lots of people who do this. Marathoners do this. People who lose 20 pounds do this (or 2 pounds or 100 pounds.) People who have children do this. People who start their own businesses do it. People who get married and stay with their partners no matter what do this. People who get married and subsequently divorced because they cannot take it any longer also do this. The point is that no matter what challenge you face, if you want the result badly enough, you will endure the pain and if you hang in there with a daily practice of faith, you will achieve your desired results.

Welp! That’s my story. Ha! A friend yesterday innocently asked me if I had been writing while I was in India. I told her that no, I wrote very little and she was disappointed saying, “I expected a novel to come out of that adventure.” Ha! My response was that her expectations far exceeded my own and we had a giggle as she realized the immense pressure she had put on me and on herself to create tremendous feats and acts that are ego-driven and have nothing to do with what is. My goal of finding ME was immense enough. Maybe, now that I have found Me, perhaps I can write a novel. Or maybe just a story. Or maybe just a blog post. Gosh. My standards are low enough to let me sleep peacefully at night. Has this to what my life has been reduced? A single blog post?

Yup. And I’d say that suits me just fine


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  1. Shira
    March 9, 2021 / 1:37 pm

    I loved this blog post. Have been a big believer in low standards for a few years now and have never been happier. Good for you!

    • March 9, 2021 / 2:30 pm

      Shira, thank you. I’m glad you brought this post into my consciousness. I NEEDED IT!!

Here I am! Eccomi qui!

Florence, Italy


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