Mar
9
2014

Eat, Pray, Love, Act, Share …

Bali magic

Bali magic

I’ve recently been listening to the book Eat, Pray, Love  by Elizabeth Gilbert. I’ve watched her TED talk about Your Genius a number of times and hearing her questioning inflection in the way she speaks, I can only think of her on stage telling her stories.

I’m at the ‘Love’ part of the book, the third section set in Ubud. Ironically I was there in Bali at the start of this week so it’s rather fortuitous that I’m reading about it now. Whilst she’s there she explains about a lovely gesture she was fortunate to be able to offer for her 35th birthday.

I was inspired by her story.

Well, it’s my 40th birthday at the end of the month and today I spent some time thinking about gifts for myself. I thought of asking for a silver coin for each year of my life and a key country I was in, then I stopped myself and thought about what I’d really like.

School children - I took this last time I was in Bali

School children – I took this last time I was in Bali

Have you got Room to Read?

I’ve always been impressed by the organisation Room to Read and have helped at an event of theirs in Brisbane. It was started by a guy from Microsoft who visited a sorely information-undernourished school in Nepal which had only 3 books in its library – he then left the company to change the world. John Wood has since gone on to build schools, libraries, computer rooms, publish books and give grants to girls needing education in many developing countries. Today over 8.8 million children have benefited in their education and today I want us to do our part to increase that number. BTW think about that – 1 person has impacted nearly 9 million!

Let’s build a library together

With your help I’d like to build a library. It is only US$5,000 to provide a library in a developing country which will have an ongoing effect at improving the lives of children and future children and families on the planet.

So, I’m asking if you will help me reach the goal of $5,000. I’m going to make it easier straight away by pledging $400 so between us we only need $4,600 … 115 x $40/years I’ve been on the planet!

All I ask is that if you would considering giving me a gift for my birthday, that you give a contribution towards our library as it would mean so much to me to know that we helped provide for a library in the world where children are learning every day – long after our contributions are forgotten.

Your action today will help many to come ...

Your action today will help many to come …

Really simple next step – just do something

Click here to go to my contributions page and you can make a donation using Paypal, Credit Card and other ways.

I’m so excited about this and really hope you can add your contribution, no matter the size, to our library – which I believe is a worthy cause and a legacy we can leave together on the planet.

Let’s make this happen!

Thank you for being a part of my 40 years and leaving something special for the future.

David

www.onemilliontouches.com

www.davidwoodier.com

Click here to go to my contributions page :)

Mar
1
2014

How do you swing? Bail-Style!

Stereotypical Bali

Sterotypical Bali … so boring I know! ;)

In mining terms, your swing is the number of days you work compared to those you don’t. A standard week for most is 5/2: Monday to Friday with weekends off where people generally work for about 8 hours per day equating a 40 hour week. For those who work in mining, we are often stationed out on mines which could be a long distance from a town, our friends and hobbies so time off when on a mine is not as useful as time at home. As a result, our working hours differ from the norm. I’m currently on an 8/6 roster working 12 hours per day which means I work two full weeks in just 8 days. As a result I get to have my two weekends together plus an additional two days to balance the hours on site.

So what to do with these 6 days when my beloved is in Los Angeles? Well with being stationed near Perth, Australia, it is actually about 2 hours closer to fly to Indonesia than to return to Brisbane so for this swing I’m staying at a lovely place called the Michi Retreat near Ubud, Bali. It is about a 90 minute drive from the airport in Denpasar and cost $25 in a taxi. Once here, I was delighted to find I had been upgraded to a homely bamboo room and after settling in I was asked if I would honour the Balinese maid by meeting the professor. I had heard about him as he was the owner of this artists retreat, however I was unaware I would get the fortune of meeting him. And what a delightful professor he is.

The whole place has it's own style and charm

The whole place has it’s own style and charm

From north east China and Mongolia, he has a strong Japanese influence; I spent a few hours with him last night discussing Hong Kong in the 50s to 70s, Japanese history, the invention of the pot noodle, wisdom, cheating ourselves, life and some of my ideas about delivering my learnings to those who want to listen. He invited me to run some of my workshops here which I’d love to do, and although she doesn’t know yet, I’ll be putting it out to Georgi Mack whether she’d like to run a joint mind and body experience by me delivering some mental content whist she does the yoga as there is a yoga studio as well as artists area.

 

This is a high dynamic range photo of the restaurantToday I delighted in Nasi Goreng for breakfast, then jumped in the pool for half an hour of exercise and stretching before a delicious massage listening to the waterfall from the rice paddy across the tiny valley from me. Amazing to think that for the cost of a good massage in Australia I could be massaged here for 8 hours as it is only $12/hour! After lunch I had a siesta (and dreamed of drinking the snake juice they have in an Absinthe tapped glass container in the restaurant area and watching the waitress suck in tentacles and small frogs as she consumed it telling me it was fine) and am now sitting by the pool writing this. Time to sign off as it’s dinner time then back to see the professor :) .

PS Happy Birthday Granny – today would have been your birthday :) xx

PPS The professor last night said he’d get me a glass of the snake juice to try which is alcohol based with Korean Ginseng, ‘special herbs’ and snake for strength! WTF!

Oct
13
2013

Bush Surgery and Burning Seeds … Australia’s answer to Burning Man

Around the festivalI have yet to put finger to keyboard for my story about Burning Man this year other than the article the ABC picked up of the adventure I had with a luxury 5 course meal in a desert, however right now Burning Seed is fresh in my mind so I’m going to write about that.

Burning Seed is the Australian equivalent of Burning Man but a seed event. In other words it helps people understand the principles of the event without having to travel all the way to the US. First thing I’d say is that nothing I know is as good as Burning Man, although the Woodford Folk Festival has attributes which are similar.

Chilling at camp

Chilling at camp

Burning Seed took place in Matong National Park in Australia about 5 hours west of Sydney and was a fantastic experience. I only managed to get down there for the last 3 days, however that was ample to get in to the vibe.

There was certainly a Burning Man feel, but with only 1,500 people compared to 68,000 I’m sure you can understand that they’re not in the same ballpark.

I went to bed after work on the Thursday and at 1.30am the next day I started my trip. Driving via Bathurst, I took an extra 4 hours to get there with my driving time being around 8 hours.

When I arrived, I was welcomed warmheartedly and joined the Dirty Birds camp. I can’t stress how much the welcoming of Lost (aka Jack) helped me connect and after setting up my mini camp in the 4×4 I was using, I made my way into the thick of it.

At the Trash Mansion

At the Trash Mansion

It was at the Trash Mansion I started to kick things off and after a few cold drinks and cocktails, compliments of the people running the camp, I was dancing away to funky tunes and meeting amazing people. It was here I made a friend and we ended up wandering around and visiting the tea cave and other venues chatting to interesting people on our journey. It was freezing cold and the blanket I brought provided warmth to 4 of us as we huddled with our cups of steaming tea.

At the Saloon

At the Saloon

In Burning Man style, during the early hours I set up a coffee spot and provided coffee and creamed rice to anyone who was still awake before having breakfast wraps back at Dirty Birds and grabbing a couple of hours shut eye. I awoke at 1.30pm and prepared myself in a funky little outfit and grabbed my bottle of whiskey to join the Whiskey and Poker session at the Saloon.

Technicolour bush surgery

Technicolour bush surgery

This was my favourite camp at the event and was set up like a full saloon with a bar, pianola (self playing piano) and barber’s chair for anyone who fancied a haircut. We got in to the poker before attention was drawn to the young lady who was having surgery on her finger as we played.

 

Wanted !

Wanted !

She’d cut her finger in a blender earlier and fortunately her boyfriend was a doctor and capable of performing the operation she required. It was amazing to see and quite an incredible experience for us all. We did of course provide her with shots of whiskey to help dull the pain as he operated!

I was fortunate to meet an amazing pair or sisters who I ended up spending the rest of the evening with.

Awesome team with platter and sangria

Awesome team with platter and sangria

We prepared a massive platter of delights which wandered around and offered this to people as the sun set with glasses of our home made sangria. Dancing and massive frivolity ensued till the next day when they drove home as they lived locally and I continued my adventures back at Dirty Birds where I prepared 7 small glass bottles with ashes from the Burning Man with personalised calligraphy labels.

I met with friends in the afternoon and played golf and boules at the Country Club whilst I watched beautiful people dancing and hula hooping as well as playing with other movement toys.

Day toys

Day toys

I had a chance encounter with a very generous friend who gave me some drinks to help prepare for the evening ahead. I watched the burning of the temple and connected with myself and others as the flames licked the wooden structure – it really was an amazing experience and quite spiritual for me.

Crazy Golf !

Crazy Golf !

That evening I was fortunate to connect with a lovely couple. She was an actress and he a magician. We chatted ad infinitum and found ourselves back at the saloon where I made the mistake of having a shot whilst leaning backwards over the bar – something I’ll be sure to be extremely aware of in future as I ended up inhaling the home made whiskey which is something I don’t intend to repeat!

I finally ended up going to bed that morning around 5 am after two days of amazing adventures and surprisingly I wasn’t feeling too fatigued despite the wine and other drinks I’d had.

Afternoon at the Country Club

Afternoon at the Country Club

Monday morning I ended up chatting to new friends, laughing a lot and generally enjoying the morning with all those who remained. I gave away a range of food, clothes and other items I’d brought for the event and then was treated to great conversation and an early dinner at Jess’s in a nearby town (she was one of the sister’s I met a few days previous) before the long drive home.

I thoroughly enjoyed the long drive home which included a couple of stops where I simply pulled the duvet over me from the back when I was parked up in Dubbo and grabbed some shut eye as I knew I was sleepy and not fit for driving. Some sleep, lots of water and the occasional energy drink lead me home safely after an amazing few days away.

Thanks Burning Man for having Burning Seeds … I’ll be back!

Oct
12
2013

Gifted a candlelit luxury five course meal … from a stranger in a desert!

68,000 people surviving in a hot dusty desert, Black Rock Desert in Nevada was the last place on earth I expected an invitation to a five course meal from a stranger, yet that’s what happened.

The beginning of an adventure

The beginning of an adventure

Every year there is an experiment in temporary community dedicated to radical self-expression and self-reliance.

People contribute to each other through art, action and involvement. No money changes hands and it is purely a gift economy; no bartering, just gifts.I flew to Los Angeles to begin my preparation for Burning Man.

I was participating in the French Quarter Art Project working in the Café de la fin du Monde whose purpose it was to gift 4,000 cups of coffee over a week.

I packed the van with coffee machines, grinders and kilos of coffee and beans; a turtle with a new shell this vehicle was to double as my home in the desert when I arrived.

Enveloped by the aroma of coffee, caffeine literally entering my system through osmosis, I took off north for the lengthy pilgrimage to visit the Man.

I followed the Sierra Nevadas north and witnessed vast peaks literally tapping the heavens for water.

5 course delight

It seemed such a contrast as I was in fact travelling to an ancient lake bed used for land-speed records where a single rock out of place could spell disaster for any budding daredevils.

After 12 hours, hot, hungry, excited and still wired from all the coffee I’d been inhaling, I finally set foot in the desert to begin setup.

Together with 33 international strangers we assembled the café. Erin was part of our team and we’d had a brief chat the day she arrived.

I found out she had donated a range of traditional handmade soaps she’d prepared to the French Quarter Bath House and as a thank you for her effort had been gifted a golden ticket allowing her and a guest to visit a special dinner event. This stranger invited me.

Dinner in the desert

On our date night, clad in formal evening attire, we wandered a dusty lane arm-in-arm to the dinner venue where we mingled with guests whose occupations astounded me … from business owners to circus performers, Google and NASA employees.

We wet and whet our palates with a champagne cocktail before greeting our dust draped desert dining dome.

Amazing company

This Pacifica-themed oasis was shaded in old parachutes and peppered with literal flotsam and jetsam, wooden crates, netting and the odd skull.

Beautiful and attentive waiting staff delivered a divine array of culinary delights during the six hour candlelit extravaganza.

This included spiced pork kebabs, taro cakes and bell pepper cups stuffed with coconut curry.

The company, the venue, the juxtaposition of luxury, liquid refreshment and bone-dry desert confounded my senses and made this an eternally memorable experience.

Thank you Erin for choosing me.

The photos from Davinator 142′s adventure can be found here:http://www.flickr.com/photos/102789759@N08/sets/72157635748699683/

 

PS This was recently published on ABC’s website here … http://goo.gl/X0TdWh

Jul
13
2013

Re-member how Awesome you are! You’re No.1 of 7 billion at that!

Angel and Devil NZI believe we consistently achieve such a huge range of attributes we don’t acknowledge and I think that’s a shame, as they are free and usually serve us and the people around us.

For example, at any moment we can find where we have deep knowledge, smoldering confidence or inspirational freedom, simply by looking for it. It sounds easy, but isn’t always as simple doesn’t mean easy. If we are dedicated to keep looking till we find it we will succeed.

Try this on

If you’d like to see where you have those attributes, these statements and questions may help. I can’t promise that you’ll find them though, unless you’re willing to keep looking and remember, this is just for fun.

  • Deep Knowledge: Does anybody living or dead know more about you than you do?
  • Smoldering Confidence: You tell a foreigner your name and they mispronounce it so you help them by repeating it a few times or spelling it.
  • Inspirational Freedom: You arrive at a restaurant or supermarket and you choose items which you would just love to eat or prepare.

 

The reason I share this is to help you re-member instead of dis-membering these amazing parts of you.

Remember, you can’t help but be the best ‘you’ there is – you’re the No.1 of over 7 billion at that … pure genius.

You are AWESOME!

Jul
5
2013

Do you Want it? Need it? Have to Have it or just Love it?

I was talking to a friend about these words the other day and I found in my notes a very practical way of understanding how much energy we’re giving to activities, people or things in our lives. The benefit of knowing this is that we can decode our attraction or repulsion from things, and take steps to change the way we look at them to create balance.

Expression

Ratio*

Influence sphere

Sense

Love to

1:1

Solar system

Spiritual Self Actualisation

Choose to

2:1

World

Self-Fulfilment

Desire to

3:1

Nation

Self-Esteem

Want to

4:1

State

Socialisation

Need to

5:1

City

Security

Ought to (should)

6:1

Family

Survival

Got to
(have to)

7:1

Self

Suicide

* Ratio of positive to negative beliefs about the subject

When we love to do something, we see equal benefits and disadvantages (1:1) and our ability to influence expands to the solar system. In other words we do things we love simply because that is what we do. I like to write and share ideas as well as go to festivals and dance – not because I have to, want to or need to, simply because I love to. By being our best selves we are contributing to everyone which helps contribute to the evolution of the whole planet.

On the flip side

When we’re addicted to something, we usually have a ratio of 7:1 of good to bad so we keep wanting it and fear it’s loss.

Continue Reading »

Jun
30
2013

How you can change time with your mind

Depending on your level of magnification, events are happening at considerably differing speeds.  Knowing and appreciating this can alleviate suffering at many levels.

What's happening in a single bubbleFrom where we are as humans, when we look at one lifetime of about 70-80 years that probably seems like a long time. That same period in the context of biology to a cell in our arm would seem like an eternity as a cell generates and regenerates perhaps billions of lifetimes during our one life; a cell is smaller so time is relatively faster. When we go the other way and get bigger such as in geology and the formation of rocks, one human lifetime is much much shorter where it can take thousands of human generations for a diamond to be formed; our lifetime is hardly even a blink of an eye to geology.

When we take time up to a solar system level, galaxy (such as the Milky Way) or even farther out to a galaxy cluster the whole of human existence probably started and finished faster than the speed of light. (To give you an idea of scale, I’ve read that our sun, hence our solar system, has a lifetime of around 9 billion years. Currently we’re about half way through at 4.5 billion years.)

So what are the implications of this?

Continue Reading »

Jun
24
2013

You love it… don’t you?

A few practical steps to clarify what you desire…

“If you don’t declare to the universe what you want, how are you expecting it to satisfy you? Also, if you don’t know what you want, do you think it’s ok complaining if you don’t get it?”

An incredible moonIn my last blog, I wrote about a very powerful realisation I recently had; unbeknownst to me, I’d been living by a set of standards I was not completely aware of. My tens of thousands of hours and dollars spent on learning and personal development had created a blind spot in my psyche where I unknowingly was judging myself and faulting others by applying my rules to them and finding them wrong.

 

This situation, coupled with the concept of the Intelligence Trap (i.e. some people are good at arguing a point and winning, even though the point they are making is invalid) means I’m now reassessing what is important to me to determine my path ahead.

How do we know what we want in life?

So I’ve been thinking about how do we know what we want or love in life? How do we know what really gets us excited, juiced and fully pumped up? Have we been using our memories of the past to determine our choices for the future? Perhaps we are using our imagination and creating images of what we think the future is going to be like based on memories, opinions, media and stereotypes.

Remember, “Memories and Imaginations are lies. They are a storage system until we’re ready for the truth – and the truth needs no apology.” Demartini

David firedancing in Sydney 2000cMonumentally for me, I’ve realised that when I was in my early twenties, I left the UK alone on a working holiday to become a traveller in a kombi camper van driving around Australia, living like a hippy and learning about myself and life. That is also when I started my personal development/self-help journey. I also had daily back pain from a roller-skating mishap at university.

When I look at those events and my lifestyle, would it surprise anyone that some of my key goals were around:

  • Getting residency in Australia.
  • Finding a partner to share my life adventures with.
  • Healing my daily back pain.
  • Learning as much as I could to work out what I want to do with my life.
  • Starting a network of Backpacker Hostels around the world helping teach people how to find out their purpose.

Auspicious really. Continue Reading »

Jun
21
2013

Friends are awesome – it’s a rush

I’ve had a few things going on for me recently and I’ve been in dark places I’ve never been before where I literally felt paralysed by not knowing what to do. I feel that I’ve been living by the rules of a self-perception I didn’t realise I had. I thought I was calling the shots, but I’m realising that by living by rules I projected on to myself, I wasn’t being authentic. When I realised this very recently, I was curious to look back at myself and my behaviour in life, my relationships, my work, my health and reflect on how it had affected them. Conversely, I wondered about how my behaviour sculpted the rules.

There’s a key goal I’ve had for 10 years which I’ve recently achieved. I earned my residency to Australia (struth, finally!). The conditions of the almost 15 visas I’ve been living by have meant that if I didn’t have a job for 4 consecutive weeks, I would have to leave the country. In addition, the jobs I could go for also had to pay around $60,000+ and also be related to past experience. During those 10 years I had to leave the country twice due to not getting a job in time. What a rush. I moved across to Perth at one point, simply because by not doing so, could potentially mean having to leave the country again if I didn’t find a local Brisbane job in time. What a rush! Continue Reading »

Jun
19
2013

Love is …

Love is ...I found this in my notes today as I was looking over some content from the Prophecy course I went to by Monsieur Demartini.

  • Whatever you haven’t loved is repeated until it is loved.
  • Whatever you have not loved runs your life until you do.
  • Whatever you hold back holds you back.
  • Whatever you bury buries you.
  • Whatever you resist persists.
  • Whatever you condemn you breed, attract or become.
  • Whatever you infatuate with you undermine.

Any and every one of these statements is incredibly powerful and with great respect and gratitude to Dr John Demartini for sharing these.

Choose one and ruminate on it for a while – see what happens.

With love and gratitude to people in my life who may never realise how important and valuable an impact they have and how much I love them.

xx

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