|My bunk is on the lower left hand side. |
A sink and locker were included in this room too!
|The Mandarin Sky Cafe on my ferry from Manila to Cebu|
I spent most of my time talking to the only other foreigner I saw. He stood out more than me! He was a planet-sized black guy with lots to say regarding ancient wisdom and energy healing. When a magnet intensifies like my spiritual magnet had, it attracts more like spirits more often. No matter where I go in the Philippines, I can't escape requests to take out Josephine and play a few tunes. Filipinos love music like green eggs and ham - in a car, on a boat, under the stars, or with a goat, over here or over there, anytime, anywhere.
|Lobby on my floor|
|Playground on the deck|
|No Filipino ferry would ever be without a prayer room.|
To sail without would beg for disaster!
|Heaps of guitars and my Josephine in the hands of a skilled helper|
|My friend Sarah in front and the owner in back|
By the time I'd arrived in Cebu City, I was not only eating 100% raw foods but I was eating mostly coconuts. Coming from a place of clean air, chirping birds, and deep love, the city energy was intense to begin with. Since I was on raw foods, my heightened senses magnified the intensity 10x. Waves of happiness and sadness, manic energy and full days sleeping were the status quo for the first two weeks.
I was staying at Roselynne's again, but this time, things had changed. She was in the US visiting friends and family, and her relationship with Karen wasn't going well. I landed in ground zero and tried to shuffle my butt into the tiny space available. In addition, there were other guests in the three-bedroom apartment. Karen's 5-year-old son, River, was now living at the house, as well as 4 volunteers from abroad who were there to help with the deaf community. I slept on the floor in Red's living room play area.
Mike was from the UK, 22 years old and attempting to chase away his insecurities by having sex with a different woman every night. He was funny sometimes and sincere other times, but most of the time his mind was an insecure mess. Since he was inept at sexual approach or respect, he only ever slept with prostitutes and begged approval from the rest of us by enumerating as many details of the last night's forays as loudly as possible.
One time, Mike brought home a woman only to find out there was some extra baggage between the legs. Apparently he was surprised but figured, 'Well, I've gone this far'. Sometimes you just can't tell with lady-boys! Many of them look so much like women you can't even tell they're men. Lady-boys are a crossdressing fad in the Philippines, but I think that most of them really are gay. They're all over the TV because Filipinos love how outrageous they are, and it's been a fad long enough to catch fire with the younger generations. According to Karen, lady-boy prostitutes are also notoriously sneaky, dirty, and potentially dangerous. In my experiences, every lady-boy I interacted with was genuinely kind and bright, with a whip-smart wit and raging hormones. When they single you out, be prepared to blush because they come on hard.
Mike shattered the tension hanging over the house by bringing a lady-boy home to the apartment. I remembered opening the door for him but crashing back in bed - I was at rock bottom of a minor energy dip. I didn't remember anyone else with him. By morning, we all knew someone new was in the house. They hadn't agreed on a price before they came home, the lady-boy had taken his phone in order to get an extra 200 pesos from Mike (hardly more than 3 Euros) and Mike wouldn't give him the money he asked for. It was comically sad to me, Karen felt threatened, and Roselynne exploded.
To her, even though she was close to destroying her relationship with Karen and Red, they were her family. She owned them, and she reacted like a Southern Plantation owner would to a threat - shotgun to the temple. She wanted Mike out on the streets with 2,000 less Euros in his pockets (he'd have gone into negatives). I tried to smooth things over a little by talking with Mike about his insecurities, empathizing with his life experiences, and giving advice for how to approach the situation now that he was neck-deep.
I'm not even sure how it ended up, but Mike's time was up as a volunteer anyway, so he was gone soon enough. I was close to Roselynne and American so Karen opened up a lot to me about her relationship with Roselynne. I tried to support her because I saw how much she was hurting, but I ended up getting looped up into all of the drama. In the end, after lots of bad timing and endless miscommunication, I couldn't stay there anymore. The energy between Roselynne and I had soured. I was invited to stay with another friend, Tony, so I gathered my things and left, not sure what I could have done to make things better beyond what I'd already tried.
In the midst of all of that drama, I was busy every day in the city. I always walk wherever I go, so I walked from place to place learning from and supporting other healers. I got involved with the permaculture people, with raw foodists, with Ananda Marga. I found the Inner Dance circle and learned a few other healing forms from them. And I started learning Tetada Kalimasada twice a week.
|The oft-hiding door to the portal|
Lito, the teacher, is like a guru, but totally not. He was over 70 years old, and he was a trip and a half. He told the craziest stories and details about energy from his life and others that continue like a never-ending line of dominoes until suddenly he finishes talking and you wonder what went wrong in the world for him to stop talking. Then you realize he stopped at the exact time to shift to the evening's exercises.
|The portal itself|
Tetada Kalimasada is the Filipino version of Pemusatan Kalimasada, and it's basically the cleaning of energy centers and harnessing of spiritual energy in such a way that it can be stored and utilized. Because people wear black pants and white tops, sometimes make martial arts-looking movements, and act practice as a group similar to Karate or something, people think it's a martial arts form too. It's not at all. To be sure, more advanced Kalimasadas do spar with energy, which involves deeper potential dangers than physical injuries in Ju Jutsu or Kung Fu. Lots of energetic cleaning has to happen afterwards. Now, it's sort of a healing form, but its uses are far beyond that.
There are 48 packets of levels, each packet containing a various numbers of levels. It takes more than 10 lifetimes to finish all 48 packets, at which point it's possible to become a grand master. There are three grand masters in the world now, and one of the ways to say thank you to the grand masters for raising your energy after you complete a level is to experiment with energy and pass on what you'd learned to the masters so they can teach it to others. At the end of packet one, you can stand on three sheets of news paper and be lifted by another person. At the end of packet three, you can levitate yourself and other objects. Again, there are 48 packets, and I have no idea what lies at the end of the later packets. You move on to the next levels by passing energy tests such as cleansing a light bulb and using it to break tiles. I practiced for more than a month, and it was interesting but too masculine for me. It lacked heart and intuition, but I still practice it from time to time when I need an extra energy boost.
I got involved with a doctor named Paredes who'd simplified his methods over and over again until his prescription pads were almost always the same: "Walk barefoot, eat fruits and vegetables, hug a tree, laugh/sing, and drink water." Very practical and potent remedies for health issues faced by Filipinos. He did use colonics, massage therapists/chiropractors, and a select few herbal supplements he prescribed, but for him those were the adjunctive medicines to nature and a simple, healthy lifestyle.
|Cebu Inner Dance Circle, Daisy vibrant in orange.|
|Daisy's Creative Thespians Club Inc., Daisy in the middle|
|Daisy and Michelle|
Daisy started to get better. There were moments of ecstasy in our healing sessions, when energy erased the pain that had crippled her, when she could even dance and laugh. One time her sarcoma burst and ejected copious amounts of toxic fluid and gunk straight out through the skin in three places simultaneously, as if it couldn't wait to pass from her system using the normal channels. But her obviously powerful results in our sessions were at odds with the fearful language being used by her allopathic doctors, and often the methods actually contradicted each other.
Daisy had a stroke, and then we spent two weeks helping her transition from this form to the next in the most peaceful way possible. We knew the moment she was passing before we ever received a message from her family. She died the day before my birthday, only 9 months after finding her cancer.
|A boy in Tony's pool|
|Tony and orphans swimming in the pool|
For me, it was Healing 101, when I learned countless lessons on healing, self-maintenance, the processes of cancer and death, and the language of the universe through meditation, Sarah, Pi, Tony, Jakki, and the other Inner Dancers. It was a transformational time for every one of us.
|"Dok" Mendoza, Tony, his sister, niece, and nephew at the orphanage|
|Orphans with attitude|
As I learned the depths of cancer and death with my friends, I was also prepared myself to hold space for my aunt's healing. Healing is always an individual struggle. It's not the doctor or the drug or the dog or the family and friends who do the healing. In the end, it's always up to the individual. So, the role of a healer is more of a helper, a facilitator of self-healing in every "patient".
|Meditating with Tony's nephew and niece visiting their grandpa from Ohio|