Sunshine within

Yesterday morning I woke and ran through a rainy grey day to the beach. My last day in Eastbourne and I had a yen to run barefoot on the beach…

I arrived here the Saturday before last and began to write then…

This is a record at the beginning and end of a wonderful week and a bit…

Sunday January 22nd….

I woke at 6am today, a frosty winter’s morning in England, time travel has happened, yesterday I woke at the same time ( although the clock read 7am in Spain!) to a balmy Almuñécar with Facebook announcing to me that the sun was returning to Almunecar (FB knows everything it seems !)

When I landed at Gatwick later the same day, I found myself with a trio who had never landed at Gatwick before needing to get from the north terminal to the train station in the south terminal…
Two were Spanish twin brothers, coming to spend 6 months in Brighton working and polishing their English…
I told them I wanted to keep speaking Spanish and they wanted to start speaking English, so we agreed to speak each other’s language as we navigated our way through a busy Saturday afternoon at Gatwick airport…. The third of the party was also Spanish, a lady who now lives in South Africa and was in the UK to visit her son, but interestingly she is Spanish by birth and so acted a very good translator at times translation was needed!

Spain was following me…

Once I had established they all were okay and knew which platforms and trains to catch, I bought my own ticket and sat for twenty minutes watching the world go by….

And today (Sunday 22nd Jan) I am in a bright feisty frosty world of beauty.
I ran to the Lamb pub to meet Jim and Rupert , it was just getting light and as we ran to the seafront we watched the sun rise in magnificent streaky pink pale blue beauty

And now, February 1st, I am about to post this piece of writing in sunny Lanzarote, the sun gently starting to sink in the sky….

A few hours ago my sister Rosy and I took off from Gatwick…

My musings on the plane….

‘I feel the need the need for speed….’
I am sitting next to my sister Rosy who is chatting to the lady next to her;

My friend Athena Jane has a mission to get the whole world saying in unison ‘I feel the need, the need for speed’ – from the film ‘Top Gun’- as the plans soars into the sky … Maybe today I was the only one who said it, on this flight, but I am sure it will ‘take off”! There is a group of us committed to the cause…

We are climbing into the air and it feels very fast, more fast than usual, maybe it is because I am looking down to write.

The last ten days in Eastbourne have been rich with experience, and they have flown by.

I started this piece in the extreme cold and frost, and today Rosy and I stood queuing to board the plane on a mild rainy day, weak winter sun filtering through the grey.

My sister loves rowing and has her own single skull, she soon discovered that the lady next to her has an Olympian rower son, Toby Garbett… I can hear snippets of the conversation about Sydney and Athens, and Beijing….

The magic of energy…. In this instance the energy of the rowing boat…!

We are all more connected and connecting through the unconscious, through what we are giving out energetically, than we fully acknowledge.

If we look out and observe our own creations, it can bring us more fully to our centre and to the responsibility of being in every moment and no where else.

I am loving having shed my shoes completely and living my life in naked feet or in my ‘beach socks’, my feet can feel the ground more than ever before… The socks offer a bit of protection from the cold and random possible objects on the path… But the movement of my feet is free, and the strength in them is noticebaley greater… And, I feel different.

I have shed even more possessions, so that I can now travel with all I own in my hand luggage; which is currently is at my feet in front of me.

I feel different in my energy field… It is hard to describe what is different, as this particular shift in energy doesn’t have any particular story to it.

Other than that it was in September, when I was last in Lanzarote.
Perhaps this is the story…

I arrived still not fully mobile or pain free, from an injury I sustained at the end of July. Anadi and I made a trip to the beach and I watched the surfers warming up on Famara Beach.
They did many exercises with some running too, all in their bare feet.
It sparked something in me….

‘Maybe I can run in my barefeet again? Maybe that is a way I can run without my body hurtling?

Nearly five months have passed, and I am returning to Lanzarote again. I feel much lighter and freer within myself, and in my body. it is more agile and pain free than I can remember.

I have taken, and continue to take, the barefoot journey very slowly… I didn’t run every day for the first couple of months and I ran in vivobarefoot shoes as well as completely barefoot, until last week, when I started to run everywhere in my beach socks, and shed more of my possessions.

It feels like I am embarking on a new stage of the journey, the road less travelled….

And although there are changes that are visible on the outside, I observe they are a reflection of me and my inner landscape.
A limitless journey always unfolding and revealing itself on the road ahead.
And all we must do is take it step by step
Pasó a paso

A Rose between two thorns

‘A rose between two thorns’ he announced, ‘we’ll see’, the lady sitting next to him in the aisle seat laughed…

I laughed too… The yang to the ying always present in this paradigm; I am a thorn, with the rose beside me.

I usually choose an aisle seat so that I don’t have to disturb anyone when I want to go to the loo!

But today I have really enjoyed watching us take off… Spain getting smaller… We flew right over the reservoir that we drive pass on our way up to the Alpujarras…
It felt exciting and magical to see the turquoise blue water there below me, like a make believe land that I inhabit for a short while and then leave again….

A metaphor for this make believe land, that we all inhabit for a short while and then leave again.

Life is a flash in the enormity of existence, and we are a spark of energy that burns with life for a short while and then goes out again…
And while we are alight, we have the opportunity to burn brightly.
To integrate and burn away all the stuff within us that is preventing us remembering who we truly are.

‘Know thyself…’

Our father said this to us so often, while we were growing up.
‘Know thyself  darling…’

He was the perfect energy for me to stretch my emotional muscles against…

When I was thirty three years old, I was making life choices and behaving in ways that were part of my own discovery, but that didn’t fit his moral code… He asked that I go and see him, because he wanted to talk to me about ‘my morals and my integrity…’
I didn’t go, instead we talked on the phone for two hours and I shared more of myself and my life with him… By now I reckoned that I knew myself better than I believed he knew me…

Three months later I did go to see him.

We lunched together on his birthday and during the course of our time together he said to me…
‘Darling, I think you are finding yourself….’

And so the very person we might think is crushing us, or disapproving of us, or misunderstanding us, can in truth be the very person who offers us the opportunity for growth, to go within and discover who we truly are.

This land is a make believe land, that we are making up as we go.

Our energy is creating our experience, and as we are in a paradigm of polarity… So if there is any dark in the world that we do not like, that affects us and we react to, whether that is in our own immediate circles, or globally, then our responsibility to to seek where this darkness is within us and own it and balance it… To be whole we must embrace all that we hide in the shadows… Integrate it, and bring it forth, so that transforms rather than destroys.

This applies to our hidden ‘gold’ too… Sometimes we might react to light in the world, because it is within us, but not yet integrated… Our ‘work’ is to be conscious at all times of the importance of owning our own shadow…

It is only when we have owned/cleared our own shadow, both light and dark, that we can truly experience the consciousness from which we are all ‘born’.

Light and dark are the polarity in the world we inhabit, a place where we can experience our energy because we are in a human body.

In integrating and clearing our energy, we will find our true self… We will discover ourselves in the silence between thought and in the still point in our breath.
We are so much more than anything we might define ourselves by now, whether that be in light or dark terms…

Whether we are playing the rose or the thorn on the stage of life in any moment, when we recognise and integrate both aspects, we will know that beyond this is the silence from which we are all created, and which reminds us that we are all one….

We are free…

Today is a grey, washed blue day in Almuñécar… A very different view from the window I am sitting by, as I haven’t seen many clouds since I have been here…
But it is beautiful and very still… And I enjoyed my morning run.

I was wearing shorts and a T shirt, and as usual received looks of surprise… The Spanish are all very wrapped up and look askance at my state of ‘undress’ even when it’s sunny!

I dropped Ange off yesterday afternoon – after her ‘intensive work’ with me – and made my way back here.

I had a real sense of nothingness and nomadness… I was driving along a road in Spain, all alone – with no home to go to, and not many possessions – I felt more acutely aware of not being defined by anything…

Anadi is in South Africa for five weeks, and as yet my Spanish isn’t good enough to properly chat… I am in a very non English speaking part of España so it isn’t possible – yet – to connect through language in the way I do in my own tongue

But I liked the feeling, it felt tetherless and free…

We are free.

We are spiritual beings on a human journey, and we are experiencing manifesting in this paradigm.

It is our energy that is creating the life we are living… If we don’t like what is happening, then it is time to investigate, and then work to shift and transmute the energy within, showing up in our outer experiences…

It isn’t uncommon to live our lives, gathering ‘things’ around us, in an attempt to create some chimera of safety…

Whereas in truth the only safety is within us… This life is uncertain, and becoming safe with the uncertainty, is a wiser route than trying to create some sort of false security…

If we find safety within, then all that emerges from that safe space within, is easier to truly appreciate and enjoy, without trying to ‘hold onto’ for fear of loss…

The other way round – holding on – can be a prison instead off freedom.

And this is true for gathering qualifications and certainty in our career too… If instead we work first from the position of freedom and safety and fearlessness within, and are guided thus by those influencing our lives, then we are likely to create a profession that truly suits our souls energy…

We can learn how to trust our inner guidance, which will lead us to the best course for our life here on planet earth.

However, it is often necessary to unravel many beliefs and stories which might not be truly resonant with our own truth…

And then from the place of being ‘true to ourselves’, our homes, and clothes and all the beautiful things on offer on this planet will be truly a part of the wonderful exchange of energy and possibilty…
As well as our expression in the form of our work, our sport, our art our hobbies coming from the place of expression and flow, not push and prove…

Creativity in motion, our souls in motion…

We will be able to recognise this planet as the illusion it is, and therefore the limitless possibility within this life experience to play, to have fun, to create, to enjoy our bodies and all the possibilities open to us, without attachment.

We will be able to live letting go, enjoying all this planet has to offer without fear of loss ….

Such a joy, to be…

The sun is shining brightly and Angela and I have spent a day outside. We met as the sun was rising above the sea at 8.15 am, and then walked along the beach and up the dry river bed which apparently goes all the way to Granada, and which was very wet in patches at the beginning!

But we leapt over the streams and soon we’re heading up into the hills, the path went on and on and I couldn’t find the promised loop…! So eventually we turned for home and finished on the beach where we sat facing the sun, chanted together with the sound of the waves our music.

Such joy, to be, to simply be in nature and to clear away any tension within, the chants vibrating through our body with the sun on our skin.

Only yesterday Anadi and I left Buxted Park early in the morning.

We had such a wonderful time there, it is like visiting family, we are embraced and welcomed home…
Rob knows what Anadi has for breakfast better than I do… As we discovered when we did a secret ‘Mr and Mrs ‘ test… Rob and I compared ‘whispered notes’ at the breakfast table as to what he would choose…
Rob got it right!

And then we sped to Gatwick, and Anadi dropped me off at the North Terminal…

We won’t meet again now for five whole weeks! It suddenly seemed a long time – too long – when we spent the evening together chatting over dinner on Wednesday.
But we are both good at living in the moment, and I so crossed the road to the terminal building… We waved and waved and then I was on the way to my new adventure and Anadi to his…

It was brilliant to find Ange in ‘departures’, and we had a lovely breakfast before boarding the plane for Spain…

As we were coming into land, we had got within a very short distance of touching down, when suddenly the pilot pulled the plane back up into take off mode again.

We climbed again up up up into the sky. Ange looked afraid, and I instantly re assured her, not at that moment feeling any fear…
The air steward announced that we would be communicated with by the pilot soon and that in so many words ‘not to worry…’

We started to head over the sea and then I got a feeling of fear down in my lower chakras…
And started to prepare to die by clearing the fear.

My intention for when I die is to let go and leave my body without tension or fear, and as we headed over the sea, neither Ange or I were sure if it meant something was wrong with the plane.
I thought that if this were the case, then the pilot wouldn’t crash land on land, but over the sea…

I said to Ange ‘at this point I prepare for death’ and we talked about what was going on for us both, as the captain remained silent…

And then he spoke…

As he came into land the aeroplane, it was apparent that it wasn’t safe as we were too near another aircraft and so he had to take off and fly around about until the ‘coast was clear’….

For Ange and I it had been a good ‘process’!
The start of our few days together of clearing and healing….
‘Julia’s people are everywhere’ Ange laughed….

Meaning that I had set that up as a workshop! (Ha ha!) We have a ‘joke’ that anytime a situation ‘triggers’ a reaction within, that I have set it up – and that I have ‘my people’ everywhere running ‘workshops’ for the benefit of helping others to clear all the pain and blocked energy from within.

This orientation can help to welcome reactivity as having come up for healing, rather than wishing it wasn’t there…!

And in truth the fear ignited within Ange and m by the thought of the possibility that the planes under carriage might be stuck (!) was a healing workshop for us both…!

And in ten minutes we had landed in sunny Spain, Marcus was there to meet us with our hire car and a hour later we were eating lunch on the terrace of Casablanca hotel in Almuñécar.

We are capable of more than we know…

Once again I am finishing my day sitting by the roaring fire in Buxted Park hotel…
José who works here came and sat next to me having discovered my videos on YouTube, He said he has been watching them this afternoon and that they have made him laugh…!

José and I have spoken nothing but Spanish all week. When I arrived I announced – in Spanish – that I was trying to improve and so would speak only in Spanish… And that is what we have done!
He says I am much improved since October – and a week of speaking with José has definitely improved me further…

It is fun learning something new, and as my father always said ‘softly softly catchee monkey…’

I am aware of the need to keep going, but not to put myself under pressure to master it…
because as with everything in life, there isn’t really and truly an end point to mastery..

I have just looked up the definition of mastery which reads thus…
‘Possession or display of great skill or technique’. And of course we will watch another perform an amazing feat in their field and be moved by their mastery…

But I have a sense that mastery of anything is an ongoing process.

I have certainly discovered this to be true in my own life, for I am still learning how to master the art of running… It was joyous today to set off again on my barefoot soles Journey around the grass at Buxted Park…

My sense of mastery at the deepest level is resonant with the limitlessness of us all.

We are all much more than we know or think, and we are limited by thought as much as expanded by it…

But beyond our thought is our greater mind, the silence from which all creativity and thoughts emerge.
And this is limitless…

And so if there is no limit, then there is no need to be frustrated as to our level of mastery, as there is always space to grow and expand and develop ourselves further.

We must simply commit to whatever it is, and keep going, one step at a time.

The three areas of my life where I am practising skills that are taking more time to ‘master’, are running with bare feet, learning Spanish and writing with my left hand!

I decided about three months ago to become more fluent in my left hand and that to do this would mean doing all my writing this way.
And so I have…. And it is gradually improving and showing me how all we must do is keep practising…

The key is to let go of a self concept of what we can or cannot do…
As children we ‘mastered’ all sorts of difficult tasks like walking and talking!
And it is the negative self concepts that we internalised as children that need clearing …

For we are capable of so much more than we know…

Feel it and heal it…

On January 4th four years ago, Anadi drove to Eastbourne to visit me…

We had met a month earlier when he interviewed me about running as a meditation for his sounds orange website…

Our connection was immediate and so that Friday, Jan 4th 2013, he appeared at my flat, we kissed on the doorstep, and then after a quick tour we whipped off our clothes, Anadi’s suggestion…! And off we set on a magical journey together…

Four years later we wake up in Spain, having travelled together as nomads for three years, the planet our home, making friends all over the globe.

It is a lifestyle that I love.

I love not owning much, I love the space that the travelling allows, nothing to hold us energetically in the form of possessions, or ideas or set ways of being…

There is space to keep shedding, concepts, ideas, anything we might think of as who we are, leaving only the space to be in that moment.
And yet we feel part of community, part of many communities. We have made friends as we travel, and the year now doesn’t seem long enough to visit all the places we love and see again the friends we have made…

For me 2017 has begun with a pause in the running step I am currently in…!  Not another one has been taken since New Year’s Eve morning…
My body has bronchitis which heralds a rest, some time to recover… My body is speaking and clearing and I am listening.
I feel light though, kind of spaced out, not even in my body…!
There is always more we can let go off, of holding on, of any tension, all must go…

And being ill can be quite restful as the body says stop, stay in this step, the next will take care of itself.

Trust, even more trust is needed, to let go and go with the flow….
The body holds all the wisdom, if we listen.
While we are on this planet we are expressing our energy through the body and so we must recognise when clearing is needed, clearing illness or pain from the body is the same process as clearing emotional distress…
Don’t fight it, allow it, feel it and heal it….

The soles path emerges from the silence within…

Anadi and I have just finished our New Year’s Day breakfast to the background music of ‘Que sera sera’… A fitting message for the first day of the year…

Que será, será… Whatever will be, will be… The future’s not ours to see.
It resonates with how I witness my path unfolding seemingly of itself…
What will be will be,

It also reminds me of a favourite quote of mine by Ramana.

‘Whatever is destined not to happen will not happen, try as you may. Whatever is destined to happen will happen, do what you may to prevent it. This is certain. The best course, therefore is to remain silent…

This way of being seems to belie what I said in my recent barefoot beach vlog about dreaming my life into being…

However when we live clearing the energy that is blocked or stuck, so that we live from a place of silence, it means that the path ahead unfolds of itself.
It emerges from within and so once the ideas bubble up, if we are clear, then we understand that we are acting from the silence within

Re the Ramana quote it seems better to read it back to front…

Starting with… ‘The best course, therefore is to remain silent’

Silence is the space beyond duality, it is the space that is the pure consciousness from which we are all born.

We are all different energetic aspects of consciousness experiencing itself and over lifetimes we have accumulated the energy we have brought into this life…

When we forget we are consciousness and start to believe we are our ‘self’ we stop questioning who is this self we think we are and become attaching to being Julia etc…!

And then we start to play out the created self on this stage of life…

Through the recognition that we are all one, and all born of consciousness, we begin to recognise that we can clear the blocks to our true energetic make up and expression.

When we start to notice every reaction we have, any single small thing that triggers us, as well as the big things! And commit to clearing the energy rather than projecting it outwards, then through this practise we start to move beyond duality…

As we clear the ‘stuff’ born both of this early lifetime, but of lifetimes past too, then we start to recognise our true nature and find there is nothing else that is important but clearing, this is all we must ‘do’….

And as that happens we find that any ideas we had of ‘controlling our destiny’ are myths.

Of course we can create from the mind!
But what unfolds is not born from the still space and can paradoxically take us further away from our truth and keep us locked in the cycle possibly for lifetimes…

However the more we clear and stay connected to the still point in our breath, which reflects the still point within us… Then if we rest here our life unfolds of itself…

Nothing negative can happen from this still place which is beyond duality and in this space we discover the truth of the first lines of the quote …

‘Whatever is destined not to happen will not happen. Try as you may. Whatever is destined to happen will happen, do what you may to prevent it. This is certain….

And from this place of ‘silence within’ our life is dreamed into being…

And we experience our truthful energetic expression of consciousness without any tension and pain manifest in our unfolding life!

And my unfolding life seems to be to keep on running, and in my bare feet …. my soul expression

My soles journey…

And this journey is one that is about deepening my connection to the earth, to myself and so to others recognising that all is one, we are all born from the silence.

There is within me an invincible summer…

I have just returned from running some intervals along my Almunecar sandy strip of beach… I absolutely loved every minute.

There is something about taking my shoes off that has rekindled in me a true desire to run…
Any sense of ‘have to go running’ has left me, and I look forward to racing along my beach, jumping over the surf when the waves are bigger to reach the end and jog back to run it all over again!
I am taken back to Hope Cove in Devon where we used to holiday as a family.
I was fifteen years old, and I had just started to take my running more seriously… My coach set me barefoot sessions running along the beach ankle deep in the sea…
I totally loved it then and I love it now.

I mentioned to my friend Fi that my new blog and vlog is in preparation for my ‘summer sojourn’, when I plan to run on sandy beaches all over the world and write as I run…

‘It’s always summer where you are Ju’, she said and I was reminded then of the Albert Camus quote that has always spoken to me…

‘And in the midst of winter, I found that there was within me an invincible summer…’

It resonated with me when I first discovered it, as my life’s journey has been about clearing away the ‘winter within’, any energy that is blocked or stuck, so that I might create a life from the truth of who I am. So that the life I dream into being is from my truth and not from my pain.

It is what I teach and how I live….

All is revealed in the next step…

I have joined a gym here in Almunecar,

It’s called ‘Tropical gym’, and seems to be mainly a body building establishment; I am happy within its walls. It is only about a three minute run to get there to train, I have taken to buying a protein shake at the end of my workout before running back ‘home’.

I joined last Wednesday… After handing over my membership euros, I was waved in to work out the machines by myself…

My improving but still very rudimentary Spanish meant I couldn’t ask how to do anything, so I watched for awhile… A lifetime in gyms stood me in good stead, and I now have a comprehensive little circuit worked out…

Although communicating is ultimately something I enjoy, I am also aware of the meditative quality that silence within a group lends me.
I feel a little bit like an alien, landing in their midst. I am accepted but essentially ignored, and so I go about my business and then leave.

I have everything I need here in Almunecar to help me on my barefoot journey; my gym, a track in a big stadium, the sandy surf and most importantly time to run and to become stronger and freer each step of the way…

The essence of running completely barefoot, (as well as in the vivo barefoot shoes I wear on the road and rocky ground) seems to me to become very strong in my body, and very light on my feet.

And very silent and still within.

It is asking me to slow down, to practise the zen of running to a deeper level…

It is asking that I let go of any destination and trust that these naked steps will reveal my future to me in their own good time….

We shall not cease….

‘We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time’ T. S. Eliot…

Join me on my barefoot running journey around the world.

My husband Anadi and I are nomads… We shed all our possessions, except those which we carry in our rucksacks and some hand baggage and on Sept 1st 2014, we set off… The planet our home…

The decision to live this way came about during the summer of 2013, while we were on staying on the Greek island of Santorini… ‘Let’s do more of this, more travelling’ Anadi suggested. A few days later, I said… ‘If we are going to travel more, why do we need to own anything’?
‘I’m up for that’ Anadi responded, with not even an ounce of hesitation…

We have never looked back…

We live wherever we are, citizens of the world. I love our lifestyle, travelling light; being wherever we are until we are somewhere else.

We took a leap, Anadi has been creating an online business as we journey, and I have continued to work in the lives of others as a mentor, a guide a coach…
I have been working this way for forty years, the way seemed to find me… I didn’t consciously choose it with a decision… it seemed to happen and has shifted in form as the years have passed by. As I have evolved and experienced more while living my life, so has the way I work with others evolved and grown with my experiences…

And for even longer, I have loved to run.
It has always been thus.
The story goes that at nine months old, the moment I could walk, I ran – on my tippy toes – and I haven’t stopped….
I have been running around this planet for nearly 58 years…

I was born in Africa and ran in my little bare feet on the beach. Running barefoot was natural to me and when I was fifteen years old I joined a running club, and I still ran without shoes.
The club, all boys and men – until I came along – trained together on a grass track, said to be one of the finest and flattest in the UK.
I ran barefoot with them there, free as a bird…

I put shoes on of course, to race on roads and tracks and over X country, but in my soul I was still a barefoot runner…

Last September, our nomadic journeying took us to Lanzarote…
In the summer I had been running in the Alpujarra mountains in España teaching the zen of running.
How to stay in the step, to be fully in the here and now and to trust that if we stay in the moment, stay in the step we are in, that the next will look after itself…
My back was sore after the rigours of the terrain, and asked that I stop in that running step and rest awhile and listen to my inner voice as to where my next step would take me.

Six weeks went by, I had trained in the gym and was enjoying different forms of exercise while my body re-aligned…

One day, Anadi and I were walking on Famara beach in Lanzarote, when I saw some surfers warming up for their day in the waves…
They carried out a series of exercises, and then they ran up and down, barefoot on the sand…

My soul spoke then…
‘Run like that … Run free on the sand and see…’

I haven’t looked back from that day… nearly four months ago now.
My body feels stronger and lighter than in many years.

I have taken it gently gently, slowly slowly… My body is remembering the freedom of the child, the young girl…

And now I am now following my soul as It takes me on a barefoot soles journey around the globe…