I have always been a sucker for a crystal shop, a psychic reading and a tarot deck. As a godless heathen, these things allow me to connect to a sense of spirituality. Same goes for yoga, swimming, walking and Goddess cards. I am a tragic hippie cliche.
Nevertheless, I think we all yearn for a way to access that spine-tingling energy.
For some people, it’s a moment of religious epiphany.
For some people, it’s a long Camino hike.
For others, it’s evensong at the local church, or a blessing at the neighbourhood temple.
For me, it’s found in meditation, music, conscious movement and visiting special places.
Because I really believe that some places in the world have a heightened spiritual energy. I have no way of explaining this except that you feel it when you’re there.
Despite the fact I don’t have a single drop of Hawaiian blood in my veins, Hawaii is one of these places for me. It just feels right.
When I hear an oli (Hawaiian blessing), I get goosebumps. When I am in Hawaii – especially the undeveloped parts – I feel a certain magic. It could be all that lava. It could be the gorgeous hula dancers. Hell, it could be all the Mai Tais.
I don’t presume to understand it but Hawaii is one of the places that gives me that piano scale-up-the-spine feeling.
Other places: the Stony Desert in the Australian outback, the Okavango Delta in Botswana, Mossman Gorge and the Daintree rainforest in Queensland, the river at Bendemeer near where I grew up, the Minerva Pool in Dharawal National Park.
The smell of willow trees, sunset over lily-strewn wetlands, the absolute silence of the desert. This is where peace lives.
Where do you connect to spiritual energy? What places speak to your soul?