Reiki Lifestyle Blog
Every Day tips, tricks, and information to help you raise your awareness
Reiki Lifestyle Blog
Every Day tips, tricks, and information to help you raise your awareness
In the months leading up to my 30th birthday, my soul was aching for a spiritual adventure. Although I see magic each day of my life, every time I travel I feel totally transformed and renewed. I felt restless.
Each day in meditation, I gave thanks for the many blessings manifested in my life followed by a brief trip to fantasy land. I saw myself on a grand spiritual adventure; a spiritual pilgrimage of sorts, filled with self-exploration, fun, and standing face to face with the beauty and splendor that is God incarnate as the natural world.
My beautiful Aunt blessed me with a cruise for my birthday. Grateful and excited, I was also pensive at what sort of travel experiences would be available. I really wanted to experience a sacred site, energy vortex or sit under a waterfall. I hoped that this would be the answer to the calls I had put out into the universe. However, my perception of cruise excursions included visions of cheesy tour guides, snorkeling, and shopping at overpriced port towns built to please American visitors. Certainly I was not going to have a spiritual breakthrough sipping pina coladas on the “adults only” pool deck, as awesome as that sounded!
I was SO wrong, and so happy to be wrong! The divine had a huge surprise in store for me.
This... this is where I ended up, beyond my wildest imagination and connecting with source in many different ways.
This is the Amazing Secret River in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico.
When we disembarked from the ship the afternoon of my birthday, I was already feeling elated. In the morning we all went to breakfast, then had tea and pastries delivered to our suites! I felt like royalty the entire weekend, and I was truly grateful and open to receiving the blessings. That is an important part of the lesson for me; being a natural giver I have a tendency to get too comfortable in the flow of sharing, and one of my intentions for the weekend was just to receive. Receive the sun, the ocean, the love from my family and any experiences that were sent my way.
When we got to Cozumel it was pouring rain! It was an easy opportunity to let energy drop and be disappointed. Instead, I turned my focus to gratitude! By time our high speed ferry arrived in Playa Del Carmen, it was a beautiful sunny day!
When we arrived at Rio, our driver announced how many were in his car. He then explained that the land we were on is protected Mayan land and the number of people allowed on the reservation per day was limited. The path through the jungle was completely unpaved. Our driver said we were traveling over limestone, which is what helped create the caves we were about to tour - and that paving them would damage the ecosystem below. There were trees as far as you could see on either side of us, and the road was super bumpy. It made me more sea sick than any watercraft that weekend! There is one road in and out of the jungle; and as we descended deeper, I started feeling like a female version of Indian Jones.
We drove another 15 minutes into the jungle until we arrived at a few huts made in the Traditional Mayan style, but serving a modern purpose. We were outfitted in life jackets, wet suits, water shoes, and excavating hats with lights. Our guide smiled and announced we had a 15 minute hike deeper into the jungle to get to the entrance of the caves.
a Mayan Shaman smudged us.
He had an altar set up with a God and Goddess figurine and a few more talismans I didn't recognize. He used resin incense, which I am guessing came from the nearby trees. The scent did not smell familiar and at the same time, smelled like something I had always known. I later learned it was called Copal.
We stood in a half circle. As soon as the incense was lit, my body was covered in chills and I began tearing. The beauty of the jungle engulfed me. The silent noise of nature surrounded me. My body began to pulse with joy and gratitude as the shaman began to pray over us in the original Mayan language. I took in every moment, every breath; it was the fullest expression of being present. I felt like I could see and touch the face of God.
And we hadn't even entered the caves yet.
Our group was small - only 10 in total - four of whom were my family members. We walked deeper towards the caves, the thick jungle air quietly caressing our faces and the sweetness of the incense lingering in the humidity.
We arrived at the mouth of the cave and our guide, Julian, explained that these caves were only discovered in 2006! A man was hunting iguanas when he noticed a hole in the ground. After some investigating he discovered it was the entrance to the caves and the underground river.
Rio Secreto is special because unlike most caves in the area, it is only partially submerged. This means anyone can take a tour and experience the beauty and splendor without needing scuba education.
We descended into the caves and turned on our lights; it was breathtakingly beautiful
About a minute into our walk, it was already time to get into the water.
“See these two rocks at the end? Stand on them and jump off” was our instruction from Julian. When it was my turn without any hesitation I took the plunge. As I splashed down into the water I could feel my heart chakra opening. I could feel a strong vibration that started inside my chest and radiated out and I could also feel pulsations from the formations around me returning.
When we got to the next shallow area, Julian began to teach us about the different formations. We were looking at a column, which is when a stalagmite and stalactites join together.
"How old do you think it is?" I asked him. He said the formations grow only centimeters per year; we were looking at one that was maybe 6 feet in diameter. "So, how old do YOU think it is?" he answered. I just kinda stood there for a moment unable to even guess at a calculation on the age of the structures.
Throughout the caves Julian showed us areas that were once waterfalls and areas where the river used to run through, and one of the coolest things: Coral Fossils. That means at some point in time the area in which we were walking was completely submerged.
The rock formations were created by fresh water dripping down through the limestone above us. The interior of the formations were full of quartz crystals! We were surrounded by quartz and I was not surprised given the fantastic feelings I had since we arrived on site.
We were shown some fallen pieces of formations - Julian had us shut off our lights and he showed us how the crystals inside reflected light. Each stalagmite he held up and shined his light through lit up like a salt lamp. It was really cool!
He then led us down into an open area where we all stood in a circle. He started to freak us out a little as we talked about what would happen getting lost in the cave. We were asked to close our eyes and shut off our lights. He told us he wanted us to listen as hard as we could and tell him what it was that we would hear. He told us to keep our eyes closed but as soon as he gave us the cue to spend a few moments in silence, I opened my eyes to the darkness.
I could feel the spirit of the Mayan shamans who may have traversed the caverns before; it seemed like the perfect place for a sacred ceremony. I felt bliss and the only sound I could hear was the dripping of the water forming new additions to the cave.
After a few moments we broke the silence and everyone sang “Happy Birthday” to me in the pitch black of the unlit cavern. It was incredible; I cried.
We stood there a few more moments as our guide began to tell us about the animals in the cave and tried to scare us a little more - it worked for me (haha).
Then Julian demonstrated a bit of cave magic with us. He told us to direct our eyes towards the ceiling. We were still standing in the pitch black and then he flashed his light up at the formations above. Up above us in every direction glowed the sparkling sky of stalagmites. He only kept his light on for a moment but the image remained with our eyes. Everyone asked for him to do it again, and since we were lucky he shared the stars with us two more times.
He then turned on a small red light and asked us if we wanted to finish the tour "creepy style".
There was a little girl on our tour who apparently did not want to do the last part. Julian asked her how she was feeling and she responded that she was up for the challenge. It took me a few minutes to understand what was going on, but the rest of our trip was to be completed, essentially, in the dark - but this little girl had to agree. She affirmed she was ready to go and in that moment I wanted to hug her.
Throughout the entire day I saw her conquer her fear. It was a beautiful coming-of-age moment; and as she stood fearless, I could feel all her energies. I didn't want to seem like a total weirdo so I said only a few words of encouragement and told her how cool it was that she was facing a fear. She and I shared the spiritual experience that day.
After that, Julian changed our lights so that some had red lights and other had no lights. We set out for the last leg of the journey, a 10-minute swim in total darkness.
It was exhilarating and invigorating. I could've stayed there forever floating in the cool blue waters.
I continuously opened into the moment and was on cloud nine completely.
Time felt endless. My red light was on, giving me direct access to visually explore the caves we swam through. The formations around us were glowing like embers in a dying fire as the little light we had reflected the hidden beauty beneath the cold rocky surface.
At the close of the swim we could see the light to the opening that lead us back to the leafy green jungle. I felt completely satisfied. My thirst for adventure, getting back into nature, and going on a spiritual journey was quenched.
We were able to stay on site a little while longer, so to savor my last few moments in the jungle I skipped out on seconds at lunch and headed for the Mayan hammocks nearby. I laid there completely in peace, listening to the chatter of the birds in the trees and the wind rustling the leaves. Even though people were nearby I couldn't hear anyone else. It was just the trees and I, bonding. I took a few more moments to thank my guides and all of the powers that be for moving me into the current space of my life. I am so grateful and happy to realize the magic in the everyday and to be able to be a part of so many elevated experiences as a result. You will remember what you think about, you attract. I also said another “Thank You” for helping me be open to receive.
I drifted away for a few moments swaying with the Mexican winds before we left to board the cruise ship. On the ferry back I felt very reflective and emotional in the best way. As we bumped along the water, the most beautiful sun set I've ever seen waved goodbye to us as we did the same.