Sometimes, life tucks a Post-it note in our lives. Sometimes that note has an important message. Sometimes that message is simple: You are important.
What I am about to share is a true story that took place on an isolated beach in Northern Nicaragua. I gained an exhilarating connection to Earth, and also to my own existence, that I have never experienced nor have ever felt before. I received a moment of truth, a moment of awakening, a moment of true understanding from every cell in my body. In this moment, something truly shifted inside of me, and I will always remember this event as “The Day the Universe Spoke to Me”.
I finished making dinner and decided to go for a quick sunset swim before the sun went down. I walked down to the beach only intending to go for a short swim and then make my way back for dinner. As I approached the sand from the thick of the coconut trees, I saw that the tide was out. I stood all alone on a massive beach that went for miles and miles. I marveled at the pure, natural beauty.
The sand was firm and wet in some parts from where the ocean had recently been. I looked to my right, and the sun had actually already set, but what was left was certainly not disappointing.
The sky was filled with a residue of vibrantly illuminated swirling colors of orange, red, pink, and white. But even more spectacular than what was above me, was the stunning rays reflected BACK to me everywhere I looked from the sand before me. Empty beach, colorful sky, colorful sand. It was like it was meant just for me, because not a soul was in sight. Being the yoga student that I am, an overwhelming urge to move, expand, lengthen, and energize my body in the form of slow sun salutations took over me, as if it was a gratitude prayer. I instinctively stretched for the sky and moved my body like no one was watching.
And, well, no one was.
I was totally alone, yet I was not lonely.
Inhale . . . expand, exhale . . . release.
Inhale . . . open, exhale, let go.
Inhale . . . upward dog . . . opening my heart . . . and I rested here in this heart-opener yoga position, as I fully took in the vibrant aftermath of the sunset
Exhale . . . downward dog . . . and suddenly between my legs, in the reflection of the sand behind me . . . I saw the moon! In all its glowing glory, nearly full, and so close to the sand it seemed like I could reach back and touch it! Right there, behind me, the moon watched my every move.
I looked up and the sun beamed at me through its afterglow, I looked behind, and the moon shined on me. Straight ahead the ocean waved at me. Up ahead, the cloudless, blue sky radiated on me. To my left, the beach was lined with rows and rows of untouched jungle coconut trees, all winking at me. There was no escaping this moment. I was engulfed in nature’s beauty all around me, no matter where I looked. There was absolutely nowhere to go and nowhere to be. All that existed was this exact moment. Nothing before it, nothing after it.
Just . . . this . . . moment.
It felt like time completely stopped. The best way I can describe it is that it was a feeling of forgetting all that I knew, yet remembering all that I am . . . all at the exact same time.
And it felt like I stood in the most delicious sandwich ever created, and it was created by nature! A beautiful nature sandwich and I was smack dab right in the middle of it all. In that moment, I felt such bliss, joy, peace, and love! I felt SO FREE! And in that moment, I suddenly knew that nature was telling me something. I felt it so strongly.
“Amazing Grace, my child,
You are nothing, yet you are everything.”
As I was surrounded by sand, ocean, waves, colors, sky, stars, and the big, glowing, shiny full moon in nature’s beautiful sandwich, I heard it again, even louder.
“You are nothing, yet you are everything”
You are nothing, yet you are everything.
You are nothing, yet you are everything.”
And in that moment, I understood.
We are so little, yet we are so big. Nothing matters, yet everything matters. We are just mere specks in this universe, yet everything we do affects our universe. What we do and how we choose to live, think, and act affects everyone around us, and in turn, everyone around us affects everyone around them.
My speck of nothing is indeed something that contributes to everything.
Boom. Nature had spoken.
You are nothing yet you are everything.
I turned around to face the resplendent moon, tilted my head back, closed my eyes and took a moment to take in the magnificence of the moon beams shining right down on me. And then I opened my eyes nice and wide, awe in my heart, and a big smile on my face, and I whispered to the moon, “Thank you.”
Because I realized that I was not just in the middle of nature’s beautiful sandwich . . . I was the sandwich: the power, the bliss, the love, the joy, and the peace.