An interesting thing happened. A synchronicity. A reminder. A tap on the shoulder saying, yes, you are on the right path. You are in the right place, at the right time, doing the right things. Keep going.
I was spending some time on the Northern California coast, and if you’re familiar with the area you know that in contrast to the gorgeous yet wildly rugged coastline, there are many areas where acres and acres of ancient redwood forests balance the powerful Pacific with utter peace, grounding and tranquil expression. While I deeply love the ever-present sound of crashing waves and the salty ocean air, the redwoods are where I most easily connect to the true divinity of this planet. Needless to say, spending time meditating amidst these ancient beings is something I seek out whenever possible.
And so it was here, along an 11 mile stretch of enchanted forest, that a sign appeared. This stretch along Highway 128 has literally dozens of places where you can pull off the side of the road and walk into the woods. My friend and I pulled over in one such spot to explore, and after several minutes we both felt compelled to find a different spot, one better suited for us to plant ourselves in meditation. And so we drove a little further inland when a small clearing and a patch of sun between the tall trees caught our attention. This was the spot.
We had been wandering amongst the tress for a few minutes when a particular tree pulled us toward her. A massive entity that, at it’s trunk had split into two, as redwoods tend to do. But one of these twins was growing out at the most peculiar angle, almost defying gravity as it’s massive weight jutted sideways and then continued skyward. We stood touching this magnificent tree, marveling at it’s strange beauty, and then I made my way around to the other side of its giant trunk. Upon turning the corner and moving to the opposite side, I immediately saw there, carved into the tree, three little letters: K A P
Now of course I don’t need to say this but I will… I do not condone the defacing of something so inherently perfect. And yet I was so captivated by the synchronicity. We had literally, minutes before, been discussing energy work in general and KAP (Kundalini Activation Process) in particular. And of course KAP has been a major part of my evolution… something that I am not merely passionate about, but something that has completely transformed my life. And so here I stood, on a tiny patch of very large forest, standing at one tree amongst millions, looking at this sign, as if it had been placed there just for me.
Personally, I believe that the universe is constantly giving us signs. Often they are easily missed but at other times, the signs couldn’t possibly get any clearer. I don’t know who K.A.P. is or why they decided to use all three of their initials to leave their mark instead of the usual two. I don’t even know if those were initials, or if perhaps it was another acronym that means something to them. I don’t know when they put that solitary mark on this tree or why. But what I do know is, that pulling the car over 50 yards in either direction, or on the other side of the road altogether, turning right on the path instead of left, or staying on one side of the tree and not walking around to the other, I would never have seen this. And yet, there it was, right in front of me, at eye level, staring me down.
And so… what is the message?! For me, trying to understand the exact meaning is infinitely less important than seeing the bigger perspective. I could hypothesize that the universe was confirming KAP is indeed the right modality for me in my endeavor toward helping others align with both their personal truth and the collective growth of humanity… and I’d hypothesize that because I already feel this and know it to be true in my heart. But as I see it, the real “meaning” of the message is simply that the message itself appeared at all. I like to call these synchronicities “signposts” – like being on a road and every so often seeing a sign confirming that you are now x-miles closer to your destination. A sign letting you know that not only are you on the right path, you’re making progress.
On this spiritual path of mine, I’m not even sure what I perceive of as my destination. Self-realization? Enlightenment? God realization? Understanding the intricate and complex workings of the universe itself? Becoming one with everything? Bodhisattva? Everlasting ecstasy and bliss? All of the above? While some incarnation of all these things takes up space as desire somewhere in my being, I am learning more and more to fully embrace and surrender into the state of not knowing. The more I realize… the more I expand my consciousness and shift my world view, the more I learn and endeavor to comprehend… I begin see how little I really understand. How can one possibly understand even a portion of this incomprehensibly boundless universe? And yet the unwavering desire to know is the fuel that perpetually pushes me forward.
For a logical, literal-minded person such as myself, letting go of having to understand all the details, and not worrying about what the destination looks like, is difficult. But I am learning that the ultimate destination is almost irrelevant… that the only place to find any real meaning, is in the journey. It is literally in the process itself, that the magic unfolds. The universe may be infinite, and yet my place in it is absolute. That I am here, in this very moment, feeling what I feel, experiencing what I experience and striving to go deeper, is the only thing that’s relevant. And each day, another piece of this existence unfolds itself before me… a piece that inevitably answers some questions while simultaneously creating others.
I will be the first to admit that there have been many moments over the last decade of my life where, if given the option I would have turned away from the spiritual path. I would have walked back through the door from which I had just entered, closed it tight and refused to go any further. But luckily for me, it doesn’t work that way. Once you uncover the innate drive to “know thyself,” the doors behind you disappear and the only way to proceed is forward, straight into the unknown. When things are incredibly difficult this option feels daunting at best, terrifying at worst. And yet, the gifts will always continue to appear and to make themselves known… sometimes subtly, sometimes overtly. And it is the arrival of these gifts… moments of pure clarity, peace and joy, moments of divine connectivity, no matter how brief, that compel us to keep moving onward.
And the signposts? Well they are there. Sometimes they are hard to see, obscured by the busyness of the mind or the pull of the heart. But sometimes, if you’re really lucky, the universe will carve it out for you, plain as day. In the middle of a forest. On the side of a tree.