this is a compilation of all 72 days of the journey i took from chicagoland to california and then to florida, from september 6th to november 16th in 2012. this is running at 5x the normal speed (otherwise it’d be around 19.5 hours long). it includes all of the following parts:
– from chicagoland to california [a five week adventure]
– life in california [three and a half weeks]
– from california to florida [just under two weeks]
Energy Upgrade – Matt Kahn/TrueDivineNature.com
The End of the Old Paradigm – Matt Kahn/TrueDivineNature.com
recent miracles (yup, this got long but all the details are connected and part of the unfolding)
a couple weeks ago i felt like going to one of my favorite parks around here, honeymoon island. when deciding what camera gear to bring, i felt i should bring my setup to do a time-lapse of the stars in case i want to take some photos after leaving the park at sunset. when i got to the park, i saw they were letting people in for a halloween event they were holding. i recall having seen the signs a week or two earlier and thinking i won’t go that day so i’m not in the midst of all of that and it might be pretty packed. i had forgotten about it and saw that one of the parts of the park i was thinking of going to was where the event was. i drove around and was going to go to part of the beach further away from where the event was being held. i think it was after passing the parking lot where the event was, i realized that if i were to park there, i’d fit in with all the cars of everyone there for the event and i could photograph the stars after it got dark as the event ran til 10. i went back around the loop and headed to the parking lot where they were parking cars for the event and found a spot a little further into the lot. i then went for a short walk on the beach.. there were a number of people around though i still took a couple 360 degree time-lapse clips of the beach and water. i went back to the car to wait for a little bit until it got dark (and in case they’d be driving their cart on the beach to kick people off after sunset). near the end of nautical twilight, i grabbed my gear (and a thick shirt i thankfully had left in the car a few days earlier, as it was pretty chilly with the wind blowing) and headed to the beach. i walked to a spot just a little bit up from the parking lot and started taking some night landscapes. shortly after i got there i saw some lights coming by and hoped it wasn’t someone that’d be kicking me off (though i was off in a little spot to the side where they may not have seen me). luckily, it ended up being a few people fishing. i wondered if they worked for the park (as i saw a sign for a friday night fish fry) though it didn’t seem that they did. i thought perhaps they were doing the same thing as me and staying late the one or two nights the park was open late. it was a little cloudy but the sky opened up after a little while and i probably got some decent shots of the stars. it was also really awesome to be able to experience the park at night. even just driving around the park on my way out was exciting to get to see it like i had never seen it before. it’s funny as recently i was looking at the park webcam and thinking i should have a look at it at night as i’ve only looked at it during the day to check out the conditions of the clouds. it was a really nice unexpected surprise and little miracle for me to end up going to the park the night it was open late and get to stay and experience it after dark (and have the gear with me that i needed to photograph a time-lapse of the stars). sometimes miracles are totally unexpected and the various layers and dimensions all come together in new ways.
after experiencing the beauty of the park at night, i decided to go back the next evening as they were having the same event a second night. i went to the same parking lot and found a spot, though there seemed to be more cars and i felt there’d be more people this night, so i ended up moving my car to the same spot i had parked in the night before (a little further out) as it’d be less obvious i was sitting in the car while waiting for it to get dark. i walked up the beach for a little bit and saw some people already set up with lots of fishing gear in the same spot someone was the night before. i wondered if it was the same group or not. i kept going and went much further than i had wandered the previous night. i found some great spots that would be really amazing to experience in the dark. when i was hiding behind a shrub shooting a 360 degree photo of the sky before sunset, i saw someone walking north with a tripod. it seemed like he was going to go pretty far north on the island. i wondered if he was doing the same thing as me and staying to photograph on the night the park stayed open late. i had thought of going back early to get the rest of my gear for the star-lapse photography and just head further into the island like i saw that guy doing, though didn’t. it was right around the time the sunset and i looked at my phone to see i had walked quite a bit. since i was a mile or more north of the parking lot, i figured i’d time how long it took to get back to the car if i was at that spot, so i could later make it before the parking lot cleared out when the event ended. i went back and didn’t have to wait in the car as long as the previous night before it got dark. i grabbed my gear and a light shirt in case it got cold (though didn’t end up needing it this night). the first spot i stopped at was a little further up than the last spot i was at the night before. there still was some light in the sky though i took a few shots. i didn’t want to stay there too long as i wanted to go further up where i could set up both that camera and the 360 degree one and was a little worried someone might come and tell me i couldn’t be there. i saw lights further up and thought i saw headlights from one of the carts in the distance. after finishing the first shot, i started heading a little further north and noticed someone off to the side of the beach. i was thinking i’d just keep going near the water hopefully unnoticed in case it was someone who’d say i couldn’t be there. as i got closer, the guy asked something like if i was getting some shots or shooting the stars. i said yeah, hopefully if the clouds open up. we got chatting for a bit and he was there doing the same thing. he took me up a little bit to show me where his camera was so i wouldn’t step on it and he asked if i had the pass. i don’t recall how our exact conversation went.. i think he asked how long i’d be there and i said until close to 10 when it closed. he asked if i had a pass and i found out about a photo pass the park offers if you have the family annual pass to the park. it allows you to stay all night in the park and photograph! i was so excited when i found out about that. we chatted a little longer and he apologized for keeping me from photographing. i told him it was worth it finding out about the photo pass and i thanked him for sharing that with me. i headed up to a few spots to set up the cameras and walked back and forth a couple times between them when setting them up (to keep them further away from each other). i was so ecstatic and excited to find out about the pass. this was truly an unexpected gift from the divine. i had no idea that a photo pass even existed for the park. i’m not sure if its new or has been around for a while or anything. it’s really exciting as i have been seriously considering selling my condo and converting a van into a small rv or camper. i had thought of spending my days at the park or one of the other local ones. how amazing would it be to not have to leave when it got dark and stay photographing!! even now or soon, it’d be so awesome to just explore the park at night and photograph it. i was just about to order a better lens for night photography too. all the pieces are coming together. i thought a little about the additional cost of the family pass on top of the individual pass though i’m sure it’d be totally worth it to be able to stay at night to explore and photograph. i could see a lot of great shots the more i started exploring this idea. i was so grateful to the divine for this unexpected miracle and gift. had i not been inspired to go to the park friday (after not making it thursday) and happen to have my gear with me and then go back on saturday and wander around exactly in the manner i did to go back to the car and then go to the spot where the guy was, i wouldn’t have found out about it. this opens up so many more possibilities. this is one of the best places in the area to see nature and the stars and whatnot. and it’s much closer than driving all the way down to clearwater beach. i had thought of going there and hiking up to caladesi island though it’s a really long way from the public parking spots. honeymoon island is so much easier to get to and besides being closer, a much nicer drive too (with far less distractions from stores and traffic). it’s so amazing how the divine brings new opportunities when we least expect them!
after hiking for miles on the beach and standing for a while photographing, my legs were hurting. when i got home, i left the 528hz miracle tone playing all night on my computer in my office right next to my bedroom. when i woke up, i felt fine and my legs were back to normal. i may have been a little tired though had some fruit for breakfast, showered, and went to the grocery store early as i’d be going to help with the livestream at the flowering heart center afterwards. i felt good and probably still a little excited from what’s been unfolding for me. i feel like i’m heading in some direction rather than just sitting in my condo waiting and waiting and bored. i finally decided that this is it, i’m not gonna just sit at home bored and lonely another hot summer. unless i meet a girl around here, i’m gonna get the van and go wander and explore. it seems like making this decision has helped the pieces start to come together in various ways. even little things like the handle on my refrigerator breaking reinforce the idea that it’s time to go. i’ve also been hearing the neighbors through the walls at times and its not exactly my idea of a sacred space that i want my home to be. i’ve had hesitation and have thought it’d be good to keep this condo just in case as its easier to just stay here when i’m here, though the association doesn’t want me parking a large van here. it must be the divine forcing me to get up and go and do what i really want rather than settle for something less than ideal. i much rather have my own land where i can grow food, have a garden, be in nature, and build a small home or get a tiny home or something.
it’s funny to watch how things unfold when one decides or creates an intention for something to happen. all the pieces start to come together and everything start to flow, but also other things may start to come up too. when i went to one of the local natural grocery stores, i was greeted by one of the girls who worked there and then saw another girl right near the front and briefly talked to her and felt like i could talk to her more. it seemed like that me deciding that i want to do the van life was now manifesting opportunities for me to connect with others when i had previously not encountered them or had missed them. i’m not sure exactly why.. perhaps its cause i feel like i’m on purpose or i feel better or have healed along the way or whatnot, or that this is just coming up as a last chance to do so before moving out (as one of the reasons i originally got the condo was that i felt i needed to be settled down in my own space before i could meet someone). i previously was traveling in my truck camper though it wasn’t ideal for living full time in, especially not in an urban area. anyhow, i won’t get off too much on the tangent or back story there.. i’m sure i’ve written plenty about it elsewhere. it’s just funny how everything flows when we’re on purpose and how things don’t seem to be going anywhere when we feel stagnant or bored or whatnot. back at the grocery store.. when i was near the frozen gluten free pizza, someone told me about the sale they had on it (which i had seen on their flyer or email online but wasn’t seeing the signs posted). i grabbed three pizzas and headed to check out with an overflowing basket of groceries. i noticed the price didn’t come up on sale for the pizzas and said something to the cashier. i don’t recall exactly what we said though i accepted it wasn’t on sale and didn’t get them. i thought of going back to look at which ones were on sale but didn’t feel like it. as i was finishing at the register, the cashier asked someone else who worked there if he could put the pizzas back. i asked him about the sale and if he knew which ones were on sale or something as those weren’t ringing up at the sale price. rather than go look or figure it out, he told the girl to just give me the sale price on the ones i had there (i think she said he was the boss or something). i wasn’t expecting that and wasn’t attached to the outcome of getting the pizzas and was able to get them at the sale price (which was close to half off). it was nice to see this all flow smoothly. i almost didn’t get the pizzas when i didn’t see the sale sign though someone happened to be there to mention they were on sale and it all worked out when initially it didn’t. it feels like part of everything just flowing smoothly is what i mentioned above.. its when we are on purpose or when we choose to feel good (or any particular way), and then good things happen for us in the world to reflect what we are feeling. the external world really is a mirror of the internal world, of what we’re feeling and believing (and how we’re being). i’ve know this for years though somewhere along the way forgot to a degree or just wasn’t really thinking it, or i just got caught up or overwhelmed by so many things or aspects of life or old negative influences and my energy started to go down a couple/few years back. (i think at one point i remember just wanting to do things the old way for a while..)
besides the little miracles unfolding, the bigger miracle is that i’ve been getting back on track. i’ve been letting go of what no longer serves me and allowing room for the good aspects of life i desire and also allowing for the divine to work through me so i may inspire others, help them awaken, etc, so we can all find ourselves living in a peaceful world. the more of us that find ourselves drawn to shift or transform (or just find this happening naturally or unexpectedly), the more quickly our planet will transform into someplace radically different, where we all live in peace, free from all the conflict caused by the ego/mind (and its unnecessary manifestations). we really can and will see a beautiful world unfold. i know it may be difficult to believe with various events that are happening in the world, though do not allow yourself to get caught up in those. if you hear or see something negative, acknowledge it as what is, do not resist it, and simply allow it to pass (this gets much easier as we continue to grow and evolve). and then shift your attention and energy to the world view you do want to experience and create. if you’re finding this difficult or not as simple as you’d like it to be, practice meditation, learn awareness building exercises, find a spiritual practice or community that resonates with you, or ask for divine grace or blessings. i could go into much more depth about all of what you can do to grow and awaken in this journey of life, though this is already getting long and i’m going astray on a tangent away from the miracles.. follow your heart and allow yourself to be inspired. the divine and universe will guide you through various means such as your intuition or feelings, and you will discover exactly what you need. you’re already exactly where you need to be, even if you don’t like all or any aspects of where you are. learn to accept and love the circumstances of your life, and your life itself, and you will see any blocks you may have begin to dissolve.
getting back to the miracles.. it’s now been almost a couple weeks since i wrote the first three paragraphs above though didn’t finish what i wanted to add after. a couple days ago, i went back to honeymoon island and i got the after hours pass for photography. and i didn’t have to pay to upgrade my pass to the family one either! it was a nice little miracle as i had thought it was only if you had the more expensive pass though it wasn’t necessary. in the recent weeks i was trying to decide which lens i should get for the night photography. i’ve sold a lot of gear and no longer have the previous camera i was shooting night star-lapses with and also sold the lens i could’ve sorta used as the focus by wire was barely usable for focusing in the middle of the dark. i narrowed down the choices to a couple of lenses (and was thinking about another potential that won’t be released until next year), and finally started leaning toward one of them. the one i wanted had a big sale at the beginning of august. it was the lowest the price had ever been and only for a day. i had previously thought about it and on that day, i figured i should sell the lens i currently have first rather than spend more money and accumulate more gear (as i’ve been working on simplifying and reducing the past year or two). i didn’t get it then and the price went back up. i was contacting dealers to see if they could honor that sale price though wasn’t having any luck. i also had contacted the manufacturer who told me to check back weeks later, which i did and they offered me a discounted price as part of their ambassador program. the price wasn’t as low as the previous sale price was and i never heard back from the guy though and was going to have to write a review and send images to them as part of the program. i was waiting to hear back from one major merchant about matching the price they had on a different color of the lens. i really preferred the black over the silver one that sold for less (especially as the lens hood on the silver one was black and it looked kinda weird). last wednesday i got an email back from someone who said she was waiting to hear from a different department and would let me know in a couple of days. that meant i’d get a response on friday, which was the day the manufacturer said they could offer me the ambassador pricing up until. i was waiting and didn’t see any response and it was already mid afternoon so they’d be closing soon. i called the merchant.. just before calling or when on hold, i shifted my energy basically asking the divine to just be done with this whole matter of searching for the very best price and i think i was also accepting that i might have to just get it at the regular price. when i got on the phone with whom had emailed me, she simply said yes she could match the price. however, she wasn’t expecting the lens to be in stock until a couple weeks into december. i then asked if she could substitute the lens for the same lens but with the other brand name on it (this manufacturer makes the same exact lens under different brand names). the one i asked for typically sold for more than the one that was out of stock. she let me know (pretty quickly) that she could sell me that one for twenty dollars more and it’d be in stock the third week of this month. i decided to go with that one instead of waiting until next month. in my previous mindset of needing to get the very best deal to save money as i didn’t have tons of money to just waste, i would’ve just waited, though i figured it really wasn’t that much more (and this other ‘brand’ might sell for a little more if i later decide to sell it, and this was the brand i would’ve gotten from the manufacturer (also for twenty dollars less) but i didn’t have to worry about the requirements of the ambassador program and i’m not sure if i would’ve been able to pay the manufacturer with a credit card, which by the time i got special reward points for my purchase through the credit card (and i think a little through the merchant), it would’ve been right about the same price anyhow. so basically, it all worked out!). i ordered the lens and filter and figured that i’d get it a little later in the month. i think on the next day i thought of asking another major merchant to match the price i had gotten. i inquired first about the previous sale price on the lens again though they couldn’t match that, and then i asked about matching the price i had on my invoice. i sent it to them and after a little bit, they said yes they could match it. it was great they could as it wasn’t a completed invoice yet as i hadn’t given my payment information to the first merchant since the bonus reward points didn’t start until this past monday. the new merchant said the price match code would only be good until that evening (this was sunday when i contacted them). i didn’t want to wait until monday as i didn’t know if they’d honor the price match a second time and i didn’t want to lose one of the ones they had in stock in case they happened to sell out. i asked if i could give them a credit card to place the order and then switch it the next day (as they said it charges it immediately upon ordering). he said i could so i did that. i was excited i’d be receiving the new lens this week (and be done with the whole searching and waiting). i wrote the first merchant asking them to remove the lens from the order and only ship the filter (unless they could ship the lens monday) and correct the shipping address on my order. on monday morning i called the credit card to confirm the bonus program i had received in the mail and then called customer service at the second merchant to update the credit card they were going to charge. i called the first merchant as they had corrected the address on my order though hadn’t canceled the lens. i gave them the credit card to charge the filter to and then found out that they had gotten the lens in stock. this was totally unexpected. i almost didn’t believe it as just the day before i had checked again and they still were not expecting it in stock until sometime next week. they said they had gotten it from the manufacturer and it would be shipping that day. still in a bit of disbelief or shock as to where this lens came from all of a sudden, i even checked their website and the status had changed to show the lens in stock. i contacted the second merchant and requested they cancel the order, and now my lens and filter are on their way to be delivered sometime today. tonight i’ll go out to honeymoon island to take some time-lapses with it and i’ll now be able to use it in a few days on the night of the supermoon. i was planning on using one of my current lenses though now don’t have to. i don’t know exactly what i’ll shoot just yet.. i do have a couple ideas i thought of that would work better with the brighter moon.. we’ll see what method i feel inspired to do or what unfolds.
another little miracle of connection that i almost forgot about was that last week i had gone to the bank to make a deposit to a new account as they were offering an opening bonus for doing so.. after having someone check the opening signature paperwork, i went to the teller to make the deposit. normally i just stand there waiting and staring off into space to not give them any pressure by looking at them when i’m waiting. i felt that i could shift my energy to connect with her through my heart and send a quiet blessing or love while waiting. i could sense a subtle smile on her face when i did so. it was nice to share that quiet connection with her. when she looked at me i made eye contact briefly though didn’t say anything outside of the transaction. it was nice to make a little connection and not look away or feel awkward or weird when she looked back at me. i still didn’t know what to say though this was an improvement for me to feel some connection with someone i didn’t know (especially when it’s a girl in her 20’s or 30’s that i could potentially be interested in). i feel as i continue to grow and heal as i free my energy of the burdens that i’ve been holding onto, connecting with others will continue to become more natural and effortless, and i’ll become comfortable in sharing helpful perspectives and inspiration with anyone i meet. i know i’ve been in that place before and am grateful for getting back on the path. it’s also nice to free my attention of the burdens of little insignificant things i need to take care of such as opening new accounts just to get some bonuses deposited. i had another one that i recently opened that i hadn’t heard back from and it took over two weeks by the time it finally got opened.. i almost just gave up and told them to cancel opening it as it was taking a long time for them to process all the paperwork i had to mail in. i called on monday and they opened it.. i was able to get the routing info over to my friend i work for just in time for him to send me my weekly direct deposit on tuesday morning. i barely made it too, as i’m only expecting one more of the weekly direct deposits from him next week and this bank requires two for the bonus. i’ll probably still get a little more work from him in the following weeks though i really don’t know how much or if i will get any. its a miracle that i’m actually not worried about it and that earlier this year i was able to save up enough money to pay off all of my debts if i wanted to. i do have a little more than what i owe to keep me going for a little bit though i’m probably gonna sell the condo anyhow.. i’m grateful to not be worrying or feel like i could easily be drowning if i stopped getting paid (as i was certainly feeling this a year ago and other times). it’s also been a miracle that throughout the financial struggles, i’ve come to accept where i am and realize how much stuff i really don’t need and how the stuff itself isn’t bringing me real happiness. (again this is something i’ve known though in going back to old ways or negative influences a few years ago and finding myself living through various fears or limiting perspectives, i ended up chasing after external things for fulfillment. i’m glad to be letting go and going back to what really matters in life)
i realize this has gotten quite long with all the details, though i share all the details as i see them all connected to exactly what unfolded. when we step into a miracle mindset, or simply allow the divine to flow through us and guide us in life, all the pieces start to come together quite effortlessly. yes, sometimes there are hiccups or challenges along the way, though an opportunity or solution will naturally be there or present itself. as we surrender into this flow, our lives become much simpler (and we become more effective at handling whatever arises). the more we learn to see how everything is connected (and the divine grace that has brought us to exactly where we are through all of the little pieces of our lives prior to this moment), the more we can naturally become connected with this divine flow and allow miracles to show up in our lives. we can choose to use this to improve our lives and the lives of those around us. as we continue to expand and grow, we’ll see how we can use this to improve the conditions of the entire world. and it seems that the more we surrender into the divine flow and allow the divine to work through us to help others, the greater the miracles, flow, and connection to the divine will become. (we are all connected.. you’re really just helping another part of yourself when you’re helping another and working for a cause greater than your own self-interests. and if a part of ourself is hurting, how can we truly be whole without healing that part?)
The Love Revolution – Matt Kahn/TrueDivineNature.com
Responding to Global Tragedy – Matt Kahn/TrueDivineNature.com
six weeks ago today, in a less-than-brilliant moment, i decided to walk across a concrete barrier/dam at the edge of a retention pond in a local park. it appeared that the water was barely going over the top of the concrete and was really only flowing a bit in the middle. i took a step forward on to it and the next thing i knew, i was falling down. i hadn’t thought about the possibility of the ledge being quite slippery. apparently that part of the ledge was darker because there were some really slippery plants or algae growing on it. on the way down, i felt my right hand let go of the tripod that was holding my camera on it. i thought to myself something like “really?” the camera was not waterproof nor water resistant, and i had it custom modified to photograph infrared light. the modification cost much more than the camera itself and it likely wouldn’t be covered by a warranty once the repair shop saw it was altered (let alone if they saw it had water damage). i landed on my butt on the ledge. it was a bit of a miracle (or divine grace or simple luck as some may call it) that i didn’t fall into the pond or slip in a way that i hit my head. i did have a few cuts that were bleeding a little but it wasn’t that bad. my phone in my pocket and keys in the other pocket didn’t fall out or get splashed (i was lucky as i had damaged my previous phone simply by using it with wet hands while using its flashlight to try to find a camera that fell into the gulf early last year). realizing i was okay, i placed my keys and phone on the ledge to avoid any further loss when rescuing the camera out of the pond. i didn’t see exactly where it had landed as i was looking forward while it went flying to my side or behind me. thinking of it, i don’t remember if i even was looking at that point.. all i remember was in that moment knowing i was falling, feeling the camera let go and hearing it go into the water (and thinking really god?), and then realizing i was on the ledge wet. i must’ve completely surrendered to the moment as soon as i realized i was falling and couldn’t do anything about it.
the tripod and camera were completely underwater and i couldn’t see them from where i was. the water was very dark and i didn’t know how deep the pond was. when i reached into the water in the direction i thought it might be, my hand quickly found the tripod and i lifted it out of the water. apparently it wasn’t that deep or the tripod landed in a manner that i was able to reach it. i’m glad i didn’t have to dive in to try to find it. i pulled out the battery and memory card and let it sit in the sun. i then (much more carefully) made my way across the ledge to retrieve one of my sandals that had floated away when i fell. my shorts were soaked and i didn’t have a towel in the car so i waited a while in hopes they’d dry out in the sun. i removed the lens from the camera and changed its position while waiting to hopefully dry it out as much as possible. while sitting there not knowing how i was going to drive home without getting my front seat wet, the idea came to me of emptying out my messenger bag and just sitting on that. while not as ideal as a towel, i thought it could work and i ended up dropping my shorts as they were still very wet and sitting in my boxers on the bag. i wondered if anyone would see me but stopped worrying a little sometime during the drive and focused more on that. luckily, it wasn’t that long of a drive home though the shorts lowered around my legs probably made driving and working the clutch a little more challenging (can’t remember exactly at the moment). it was also good that none of the neighbors were out when i was getting out of my car in the parking lot at my condo. after making it home, i probably showered as i didn’t know how clean the water in the retention pond was as there was a water treatment plant nearby and i wondered if that was where the water was coming from as the ponds seemed to be man-made (it didn’t smell bad like it was sewage water though i still wondered).
that evening, i went to help my friend michael at the flowering heart center in clearwater with something on his website before the weekly satsang. when i got out of the car to go inside, my back really hurt just getting up. later that night and the next day, the body was hurting a good bit. i decided to take it easy and try to rest that following day. i had left the 528hz miracle tone playing on my computer (i may have left it playing overnight, and had it playing in the background during the day). sometime that afternoon i realized that i was feeling better and 90% of the pain was gone. i don’t remember exactly when, maybe a couple or few days later, all the pain was completely gone. the scrapes and cuts healed soon after. i can still see a little bit of where one of the cuts was on my arm, though it feels smooth and pretty normal.
after the memory card was dry, i downloaded all my images without a problem. over the past few weeks i left the camera sitting so it could completely dry out. for the first few days or week, i had it in the glovebox of my car thinking the heat of the car could help dry it out. most of the time after that, it was sitting in the sun in a plastic zip-lock bag with silica gels in my condo. i would move it or flip it every so often. i did pull the camera out of the bag at one point after the first week or two to dry out the silica gel and bag in the oven. the bag had melted to itself and ended up with a few small holes in it when i tried to pull it apart, though i still put the camera back in with the silica gels (probably the next day). during the last couple weeks, i almost forgot about it when i left it on the windowsill where it’d get the sun during a good part of the day. the other night, i turned on my oven to 170 degrees, the lowest temperature i could set it to, and then turned it off as soon as it beeped that it was up to temperature. i opened it up for a little bit to let some heat escape, and then placed my camera on a paper towel on top of an oven mitt, along with the lens (that had just sat in my office, sometimes in the sun, sometimes not). i checked it a couple or few times after putting it in, opening the oven door for a little bit to let some heat go out to make sure i wouldn’t melt anything inside, and then left it there overnight. the day after, i pulled it out and left it in the sun in my office for a day or two.
yesterday, not really knowing if it’d work or not, i popped in the battery and turned it on. it was asking for the date like it did when i first got it. the screen looked normal and it was working. i set the date and went through the menus to see that it appeared to have remembered all the other settings i had previously set. i grabbed a lens to test it, and saw that the camera appeared to be working totally fine even before i focused the lens. i inserted a memory card and it saved a couple photos like normal. when i played them back, it was showing them as vertical when they were shot horizontally. perhaps the orientation sensor wasn’t working, though if that’s the only loss, i could deal with having to correct the rotation of images on the computer (and who knows, it might start working eventually.. for now, i adjusted the setting so the camera doesn’t automatically rotate the images upon playback). it does appear that the infrared-pass filter (that was installed in front of the sensor where the ir-cut filter typically is) could be cleaned, though again, if cleaning the sensor is really all it needs, that’s no big deal (and its still functional shooting at wider apertures where the dust or watermarks don’t really affect the picture so much). i really didn’t know if i was going to have completely lost the camera or have to pay a lot of money to repair it (or maybe just use the gopro camera i converted to infrared instead, or convert my older mirrorless camera myself rather than pay a lot for the professional conversion again), though i am grateful i don’t have to worry about any of that. i tested the lens and it works totally fine too (and it’s an autofocus lens with a power zoom mechanism so has more electronics and moving parts than most of my lenses). the lens may need to be cleaned a little but i didn’t notice the watermarks affecting the picture quality in the quick test shots i took yesterday. (i wasn’t worried at all about the lens and was willing to accept that it died if the camera would’ve worked, though am glad both are working)
another thing that worked out is that the new wide angle lens i recently got appears to work with the infrared-modified camera. a lot of lenses often have ‘hot’ spots appear in the center of the image as they’re not designed to photograph in the infrared spectrum of light. it looks like this one may have a little bit of a hot spot that’s more noticeable if i stop it down, though it’s not as noticeable at wider apertures. and it’s definitely far less noticeable than the previous wide angle lens i was using before i decided to get this new replacement lens. i primarily got this lens for star-lapses and use on my regular color camera as it’s faster and easier to focus in low light. it’s an added bonus that i can also use it for infrared photography when i wasn’t expecting to be able to (as i recall seeing it on a list of lenses that don’t work for infrared).
always remember to look for the good in life. even when things don’t happen the way you want them to, they still can work out. falling into the pond, thinking i may have just destroyed an expensive camera, and feeling physical pain were not exactly what i wanted to experience, though i surrendered and accepted it, and inside, i truly believed it was possible that the camera would be totally fine and it was. when we believe something can happen, we open the door for the universe to present us with that possibility. i realize not everyone may believe that the world is a product of their beliefs, thinking, or perception, nor have faith that a higher power can work miracles, though even to the skeptic, over-analytical, or scientific mind, just think of the possibility that the camera and lens were only immersed underwater for around a minute or so (or maybe less, i didn’t sit there counting the time) and that water may not have found its way into the most critical components of the camera, or even if it did, it may not have been that dirty and by pulling out the battery quickly, not much electricity may have run through it to short out in that brief time and all it needed was to dry completely. being open to the possibility that something can happen, regardless of if you believe its happening because of something scientific or spiritual, allows for that possibility to unfold in your experience of life.
sometimes the best thing we can do is simply relax, accept/surrender/allow, and forget about what happened so the mind doesn’t take us somewhere we don’t want to go. had i been worried or resisting the whole situation, who knows what would’ve happened.. the physical pain may have lasted longer and who knows if the camera would’ve worked or not. i had the thought cross my mind that maybe i should’ve put the camera in the oven closer to when it first happened to try to get out any water and moisture that may be inside, though i didn’t worry about it and just trusted that it’d be okay. i also began to accept the possibility that maybe i wouldn’t have it and would have to shoot with my infrared gopro camera or not at all.. i became detached from the outcome. this became easier as i was starting to see myself too engulfed by my photography and began thinking maybe i should quit or stop altogether. perhaps that’s part of what manifested the camera falling in the water. i thought that when it happened though then thought okay, i don’t really want to lose the camera as being the reason i have to quit. it was funny as just a minute or two before i decided to walk across the concrete edge/dam, i was getting tired of shooting the long video clips. had i followed the feeling of not wanting to photograph any more at that time, it wouldn’t have happened. instead, i followed the mind thinking maybe i should stay a little longer which took me into the water. [it’s funny seeing how i just wrote that and how that ties right in to how i started this paragraph.. i added these last few sentences later and wasn’t really thinking about where it was going and i just realized that i was guided to tie it all together.. that’s the beauty of learning to live through feeling, flow, or the heart rather than living through the thoughts of the mind all the time… and it looks like this that i just wrote ties in to the next sentence too (which i had previously written).. its brilliant how the divine flows like that!] as i’ve learned to shift my perspectives on life and what’s happening (especially the parts i don’t like so much), i’ve learned to trust that the divine is guiding me and everything is working out exactly as it should. i’ve learned to stop trying to force things to work out or make them happen, and just try and know they will happen (or something better will). it’s a far simpler approach and allows you to enjoy life along the way much more. yes, there still is ‘doing’, though the more time we spend ‘being’, the more we open ourselves up to be able to experience the true beauty this life has to offer. life truly is a magical experience if we open ourselves up to experience it as such. the more i relax and trust, the more i can see this. i’ve had unexpected moments recently where i just felt much more peaceful, relaxed, or have felt the presence of divine / unconditional love or something beautiful yet difficult to describe in words. i wasn’t trying to create these feelings.. they just presented themselves to me in this journey. it feels like part of it happens from this whole process i’ve been describing of letting go, trusting, surrendering, etc, etc.. it opens us up to flow with life more or for life to flow through us more. we get back on track, in tune, and things work out much more simply or effortlessly, and we live more fully in the present.
so what can we do to embrace life more fully in this manner? it’s best not to try to ‘do’ anything, though if we do want to something, spend time looking at your life internally. go deep within and look at the beliefs and stories you’ve made up about life. see that’s all they are: beliefs and stories that were made up (or told to you by someone else and you took them on). and decide to let them go if they’re no longer serving you. as we bring to light and become aware of these aspects of ourselves that may be unconscious, we can then deliberately decide whether we want to keep this as part of our consciousness or not. if it’s something that no longer serves us, we simply fully experience it and let it go. the more we let go, or forget, the more room we open up for whatever we do want in life, or for whatever is already there waiting for us (but unable to arrive because we’re so full of the past self-limiting beliefs or pre-conceived notions). all we have to do is shift our energy/consciousness in order to see changes in our physical and mental reality. the mind likes to keep track of things and remember, though this remembering does not serve us. this keeping track eats up our attention and prevents us from experiencing new things in life or simply being fully present and alive in the here and now. forgetting can be handy in the physical world too.. i had forgotten about some fruit i had purchased that i left in the fridge and have been eating the remainder of it the last couple/few days. today, just before writing the last couple paragraphs, i ate the last mango i had. it was much softer and more ripe than the previous ones and it tasted so much better and sweeter. had i been thinking too much about making sure i eat all of it before it goes bad, i would’ve had it sooner and wouldn’t have gotten to enjoy it as much as i did. it was the best conventional mango i’ve had out of all the ones i got in the recent weeks. perhaps that wasn’t the best example or didn’t exactly fit in here, though i wanted to share how good it was :) getting back to looking at the limiting beliefs, it’d be good to really look at every single aspect of your life and every single aspect of how you perceive life itself, and observe where it all comes from and see/realize how these beliefs/perspectives are really altering and creating your perception of this reality. you could get lost in this so you don’t need to spend every single moment doing this, though it’d be helpful to do as often as you feel helpful. if you’re feeling stuck or that life is not flowing like it could, then it’d be helpful to spend a good bit of time engaging in the inner work so you can work through whatever blocks are there. if your life is okay or even going well but you’re still feeling a little bored or like there could be something more fulfilling in life, then that’s another time to dive into your consciousness and discover what may be lurking within. other things to ‘do’ in this journey would be to simply do what inspires you and what you feel driven or called to do.. there’s a reason you feel so passionate about something, so follow it and see where it takes you. it could be a lifelong adventure or it could be something short-lived that takes you to something else. whatever it is is fine.. it’s taking you one step further along your journey so embrace it. life is a never-ending process. if we feel too stagnant, then that’s when we begin to feel stuck or feelings and thoughts that don’t serve us may begin to linger. if we regularly shift how we’re feeling, what we’re doing, or how we’re perceiving life, we can continue to grow, evolve, and expand, and can bring about great change not just in our own lives but also in the lives of others and of the earth. if we already are following our passions and inspiration, then it’s also good to take time to just relax, meditate, or go to nature, and ground ourselves back here on earth in the present moment. this balance of engaging with our inspiration or higher calling/purpose and of simply being will help us along the journey so our energy isn’t just entirely focused on the same thing all the time. it will open us up for new possibilities and growth if we make subtle changes, even if its as simple as changing the time of day you do things or the order you do things in.
life can really be simple if we allow it to be. finding peace is as simple as learning to shift our own perceptions of life. creating peace in the world is as simple as practicing this and sharing this with others. the more of us that discover and create inner peace, the more quickly we’ll see peace manifest and unfold in the outer world. the beautiful world we desire is closer than we think.
sleeping under the stars time-lapse [some of the places i slept while living life on the road in 2012]
these are all the star-lapses i shot on the journey i took from chicagoland to california and then to florida, between september and november of 2012
South Dakota • Badlands National Park
Oregon • Crater Lake National Park
Wyoming • Devils Tower National Monument
Arizona • Grand Canyon National Park
California • Kings Canyon National Park
Nevada • Lake Tahoe
California • Mount Shasta
Washington • Mt. Baker National Forest
Washington • Ross Lake National Recreation Area
Utah • Zion National Park
Oregon • Crater Lake National Park
Wyoming • Devils Tower National Monument
Arizona • Grand Canyon National Park
California • Kings Canyon National Park
Nevada • Lake Tahoe
California • Mount Shasta
Washington • Mt. Baker National Forest
Washington • Ross Lake National Recreation Area
Utah • Zion National Park
recently i started watching livestreams of speeches author Marianne Williamson gives weekly. the one from last night was pretty good, a lot of it was political, though she spoke a bit about what we can all do to help make change in the world. here’s a link to it: livestream.com/accounts/11464019/events/6590930 most of her livestream links usually disappear a couple days after the event — if you want to watch future ones, you can sign up for them (for free) at her website: marianne.com if you want to see one before then, there is one from a few weeks ago that is still online: livestream.com/accounts/11464019/events/6336347
i also recently watched a video by Matt Kahn speaking about The Love Revolution that had great energy. here’s a link to it: www.youtube.com/watch?v=fFS84Jp1qfc
one last thing i’d like to share is an article by Charles Eisenstein i saw the other day: newandancientstory.net/this-is-how-war-begins/
i hope you find these perspectives helpful in a time when so many of us are divided
Why Do Desires Go Unfulfilled After Working Hard? Sadhguru
How to Live Your Life Like a Pleasant Song
Yoga for Love- 5 Minute Yoga Lesson
Sadhguru’s Chicago Book Tour Talk 13th October 2016
Sadhguru: “Developing an Inclusive Consciousness” | Talks At Google
Focusing in One Direction