A Surrender Experiment

It‘s been a year since my move to Germany, back to my ancestral land in Bavaria. Murnau isn‘t my birth place but my Dad has been living here since my parents split up when I was two. I remember many childhood summers spent at the shores of the beautiful Staffelsee, where my Dad worked as a Lifeguard. The whole area is stunning, with the Alps in close proximity, thick, wildlife brimming forests everywhere and turquoise mountain rivers snaking through alpine meadows that are so richly studded with wild flowers that I can‘t stop myself from picking bunches of them each time I pass. 

Staffelsee in Murnau

I did‘t really plan on living here exactly – I had in mind to move to Dorfen, my actual birth town, about a 90 min drive north from here, 50 km east of munich. That‘s where most of my family still lives – my aunts and uncles who all had a hand in bringing me up, and a bunch of fabulous cousins. It would have made sense for me to live there, or close to my mother, in the outskirts of Munich. But I did‘t want to decide about that myself. I wanted the universe to decide for me. I wanted to surrender. 

Some years ago, I read a book called „the Surrender Experiment“. It was written by Michael Singer, the founder of WebMed and writer of „The untethered soul“, which I had previously read and loved. 

In it, he describes what had happened to his life, after he made a conscious decision to „surrender“ –  to not resist, but take on anything the universe would offer him. 

He stopped listening to fear and ego and only listened to his heart, even if it lead him out of his comfort zone – which of course it did. But he decided to trust and to surrender. 

He took on job offers, opportunities and projects, even if they didn‘t fit into the plans and wishes he had made for his life. 

And whatever he took on, open-heartedly, led him further onto the direct path of fulfilling his destiny. Without really knowing it, he developed his own inner purpose and began to blossom into his true self. 

He served the world through his inner calling and the universe supported him in it. I was inspired. 

And even though I knew that my life and my heart was made of different material to that of Michael Singer, I too, wanted to surrender. 

And so I consciously decided to make it my practice to listen to my heart and trust in the universal flow. 

And it fitted nicely with the messages of the Yoga Sutras, that I had already tried to live:

In order to be happy, mentally stable and live an authentic life in the truth of our soul, we need to do two things: Practice Awareness and Surrender to the moment. Practically, this means that we have be aware of and accept the present moment fully as it is. Even if it is difficult, we need to face the truth of what is, with no judgment, and with complete an utter acceptance, before we then decide what our action should be.  

Awareness and Surrender. 

A particularly interesting opportunity to practice this arose when my husband and I decided to part our ways. Thankfully he too is a practitioner of Yoga and its philosophy and so we could both simply acknowledge that, although we had had a good relationship, it no longer served either of us. We simply accepted this as a fact, in awareness of each other‘s need to fulfill their own destiny. We surrendered to the truth and set each other free. It taught me that, in full faith of my practice, even a separation can be a beautiful and positive experience. 

Soon after we acknowledged this truth, it felt as if a weight was lifted of my heart, in fact, I lost about a stone of weight that I had previously gained, without any „dieting“, just because my soul no longer carried the weight of our unhappiness. 

And then came the question of what next? Where to go? I had a notion of maybe going back to Germany, as I had just re-connected with my long-lost father (another story…) but my children and my work were here and Germany was more expensive than Ireland then. 

So, again, I left it up to the universe. 

I sat, and I meditated. I literally asked my energetic field to spread it‘s feelers and search out the best place for me, the place where I was to be most wanted, where I fitted in best, where I was going to be welcomed. 

Until I got an email from my father that, by a strange coincidence, through a friend of a friend who was an estate agent, he found myself an apartment in Murnau. 

Murnau am Staffelsee

Murnau, the pretty holiday town, where everyone wants to live and nobody ever finds a place. Where rents are so high that some of the locals sometimes search for years to find an affordable apartment. 

So, I thanked the universe and moved. 

At first, I explored the town and found, that it is referred to as the „esoteric capital of Germany“, with it’s many Natural Healers, Shamanic Practitioners, Yoga Teachers, Writers and Artists. 

I found out that the Murnauer City Council had recently decreed that no new building project or any other project was allowed unless it can prove it‘s positive effect on the environment. 

Most shops along the main street sell fair-trade, sustainable and organic, or artisan craft products – there is even a purely organic, sustainable pet store! 

So, even mid-pandemic, it didn‘t take me long to find a wonderful little Yoga studio whose owner took me in to teach some of the classes. 

So, you could say, this was the perfect place for me, just as I had asked? Yes, but there was even more:

A week after moving in I knocked at my next door neighbours door to introduce myself. He invited me in for a coffee and we got to talking and soon found out that we had a lot of common interests, so we quickly became friends. 

Over time, the parallels between our lives turned out to be quite unusual – apart from the fact that we are both cancer ascendants and in our Venus life cycle, both of us were brought up by extended family, both of us moved in with our biological parents at age 6, both of us had struggled with drugs during teenage years and both of us had a deep encounter with death. 

Sharing such intimate experiences of course creates a special kind of trust in each other and so we opened our hearts and fell in love. 

Now, this was not an easy surrender practice on my part, as I honestly did not want to fall in love with anyone. I had set my mind on being alone for the next few years and enjoying my freedom and so I have to admit that I struggled at first to allow myself to feel the way I obviously felt. My mind found all sorts of excuses – but he is my neighbour, but it is too soon, but he is too old, but…

Well, we now live together, quite happily. 

As he is originally from Spain and still owns his childhood home there, we will be spending the summer there… of course I googled the place and found that there is an Ashtanga Yoga retreat centre nearby, run by an Irish couple… 

So I started learning Spanish now… 

Of course, there are many more encounters and beautiful co-incidences. 

I had left behind some amazing friends, who I miss dearly – female friendships are really important to me – one of them a Shamanic Practitioner called Anna. When I was in the process of moving out of my apartment, one of the people viewing it was a Shamanic Practitioner called Ajna, who is fast becoming a soul-friend with whom, I am sure, I will create many projects with. 

Not a substitute for Anna of course but yet another one of the universes beautiful ways of giving what my soul truly wants. 

And this is, what surrender is truly about, isn‘t it? To surrender the Ego, the fears and the mind‘s longings, that are only clouding the view to the true soul, to our true heart‘s desires. We often only think that we want something, because it is easier, it is within the comfort zone, the familiar, or it is what others see as best for us, what is expected from us, by our family, by our society. 

And of course, there will always be people who may be dissapointed that we didn‘t act in a way they would have wanted us to act but is that enough reason to sacrifice our own chance for true happiness, joy, freedom and authenticity?

If we walk the path of our soul, we will be supported. If we follow our true heart‘s calling, even if it is difficult at first, we will find joy. If we are truly honest with ourselves, we will find freedom, of that I am sure. 

And so I will continue to practice, at least to do my best:

Accepting each moment excactly as it is, surrendering my ego and walking the path of my own truth. 


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