Sunday, September 21, 2008

Green Figs: Loving Bliss, Film in Harbin Theater, Harbin Domes and Watsu Freedom*IMG_0323.JPG

The green figs are ripe and sweet on the hill just below the new little deck at the Harbin pool area. Mmmmm.

A mother is kissing her baby very lovingly near me on the sundeck. She's cuddled over her baby, and he's very happy, smiling, elated, ~ he's laughing and glowing. Both are naked. They're both very happy. Her full breast graces his foot. He smiles and giggles as she kisses his neck and face again and again. What a happy boy and loving mother. It looks like very loving Bonobo behavior, which Bonobo do throughout their lifetime. Where is this in human affairs? How might one generate this locally and societally, good will and all? Both mother and son are creating a state of natural, loving bliss.

I saw the film “Surfwise” (2007) last night in the Harbin theater. It's about a California family – the father received his medical degree from Stanford University – who, after getting fed up with society and practicing medicine in Hawaii (he was the president of the American Medical Association in Hawaii) in 1956, got into a camping van, and traveled up and down the California and Mexican coasts to surf. His whole family's life came to revolve around this love of surfing, as a response to the disaffections of society. They became very connected to the Pacific Ocean, and lived very simply in doing so. They did this for decades, having 9 children. They all lived together like puppies in a number of small-ish recreational vehicles. As one son says in the film, they had a perfect spirituality. They were free, very happy and since everyone grew up surfing, they became very good surfers. It's an example of a response to modernity. And Dorian, the father, shapes this independent response to modernity through his individual will and unique vision of a surfing family having fun. And things seem to work out well for the kids, both socially and economically, as well as for the family after the kids became independent adults. The film is inspiring, and echoes Harbin's orientation to freedom.

As I was walking up from the Temple last night after hearing LeAnn and her partner, Carlos (, sing, play dulcimer-autoharp (pentatonic zithers), and play singing bells that vibrate beautifully, a woman, C, standing at the top of the steps of Stonefront Lodge near the restaurant, asked me by name if I would like to have a Watsu {water shiatsu} the next morning. She was taking a class and needed a model. It would be free. I said yes.

I arrived at 9 am at the Harbin Domes this morning. As you walk toward this beautiful and interesting structure, you see three domes that look like beige bubbles with windows. They house the School of Watsu and Massage at the Harbin Hot Springs Watsu Center, but seem a little mysterious and 'other,' like some kinds of indigenous architecture. The area around the Harbin Domes is still natural, wild and very beautiful, situated on other side of the Harbin Valley from the Mainside pool area.

Inside the Watsu Center, there are a number of pools designed specifically with Watsu in mind. I went to the lower pool and A~ from Santa Cruz, California, about 4 hours away, was holding a class. We all wore bathing suits in the lower pool, different from in the Harbin Mainside area. A couple from Germany, and a woman from Holland who lives locally, were taking the week-long workshop. A~ was teaching some specific techniques to these folks. The people taking the class seemed new to Harbin, and weren't aware of the 'freedoms' here - just laying out in the sun and going into the pools naked and seeing what comes up in the milieu - in the Mainside area across the Valley. But as Watsu students from another country coming to the place where Watsu started, they were offered what seemed to me a kind of slightly more familiarly structured (learning and with clothes) environment, than Harbin's free-form focus. C's floating me as she learned Watsu was lovely.

Watsu can be very free, intimate, fluid, mutual and freeing, and kind of began with hippies floating each other in the Harbin warm pool, and sometimes making love together afterward. These week-long schools will help people do Watsu better, as well as spread it.


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