Updated: Apr 24, 2019
My first solo international trip to Bali, Indonesia was life-changing and a truly deep experience that I will forever carry with me.
We live in a such a big world but I know at times it could feel very small. We typically think the world revolves around us, our triumphs and thoughts. Though, there is someone right now praying to see another day, practicing gratitude in conditions we couldn't imagine living in, having faith that one day they will be able to walk, and there is someone dying not from sickness but loneliness. The little everyday things we take for granted are probably the "things" we should be most grateful for. My trip to Bali taught me all about the significance of perspective and gratitude.
“Life, religion, and art all converge in Bali. They have no word in their language for "artist" or "art". Everyone is an artist.”
This place really exceeded my expectations. I'll admit, once I arrived to the airport I was a bit nervous. I worried that I would get lost or taken advantage of because I "stood out". I immediately made plans to stay at my hotel resort to ensure safety. Though, I learned very quickly that safety is without question the ritual of Bali. Everyone was welcoming, friendly and very helpful in making sure I found my way. There is hardly any crime in Bali and they collectively make it a point to practice integrity and love. They also believe in karma, compassion and there is no such thing as "standing out". We are all one. It was such a consolation because it is not that way in America. We idealize people and singled them out as "special" or "different". Crime is very high, morals run low at times and social status separates us. In Bali, we are all special, we are all dreamers, we are love, we are united, and we are in this life "together".
With the help of my private driver, I visited a few beaches, the Bali zoo, famous temples, yoga centers and wood carving villas. In every city, I noticed flowers, fruits, plants and other miscellaneous items laid out in piles. My driver explained that they were "gifts" to the Bali God's before daily prayers, self purifications and praise. It is offered every day as a form of thanking for the peace given to the world. That really inspired me. The selfless and daily giving of those who had "nothing". Throughout my trip, I'd quickly come to realize that Indonesians actually have a lot. They have respect for their environment and humanity. Hearts full of gratitude and love. A strong moral compass and a perspective on life that we could all benefit from. If that isn't "rich", I don't know what is.
“With love, we could turn this crazy world around.”
The culture in Bali was an eye opener and provided a sense of warmth about my place in the world and how we are all connected. More connected than we probably like to believe. We come into a lot of places and situations with preconceived notions and stereotypes. We hold onto grudges, judge our peers, cause harm to each other, hang loosely to morals and damage our environment without thinking twice. Practicing these behaviors uphold no positive benefit to the world or our place in it. As we know, our thoughts guide us and our bodies in our journey. We can only attract what we think. So why not think positive? Why not see the beauty in life? Why not love everyone because hate is such a heavy burden... Why not respect the environment and those who live in it with you.. because in the end we only have each other. Its really a simple concept. Choose love over hate. Always. There is significance to your being. There is significance to your actions. There is significance to your thoughts and words. There are other perspectives you haven't yet explored and love is always an option. While we cannot instantly get everyone on the same page, we can start with ourselves and lead by example. Lead in love and joy for all of the little things because thats what makes you "rich" beyond physical interpretation.
Eat, Pray, Love.
I'll be blogging about my upcoming solo international trips and everything I learn along the way. Stay tuned and subscribe for updates!