Testimonial – Golden Lotus Workshop
I attended Lujan Matus’s Golden Lotus workshop in October and I’m glad I did. It was a taste of heaven, to put it simply, and I didn’t want it to end, and since I got back, I’ve been pouting like a 5-year old who didn’t want to leave Disney World after her family’s first vacation there.
Except it was better than Disney World, because it wasn’t a mere escape. It was a unique experience with fellow earthlings, all of us seeking communion. And learning how to be open to it. And learning what it actually is, by means of Lujan consistently and thoroughly modeling a kind of inter-relationality that is rarely if ever seen in human society.
It’s impossible to describe totally but some examples were the fact that with him– and eventually, with the whole group– it was clear that a yes was as good as a no. Talking was as good as not talking. Drawing attention to oneself by questioning things was as good as sitting in the corner and not saying a peep. No one was cast out, no one was scapegoated, no one was put on a pedestal (well, except for maybe Genki ) . Even when he called people on the carpet, Lujan put in significant effort afterwards to touch base with that person and make sure he or she had the chance to express themselves again and also still be included in the joy of the group. I thought so, at least.
It was utterly weird at times to be around someone— a leader no less, in a group of people who clearly admire and respect him immensely— who had no ego, no mood swings, no confusion, no secret yearnings to dominate this person and placate this other person, no agenda to fulfill other than to truly teach, uplift, and appreciate the beings around him. Lujan repeated a few times that he views all humans as equal, and he is someone who walks that talk. I can’t emphasize enough how amazing this was to behold.
As for the routine, it was very hard, to be honest. There were moves I never thought I would get down but somehow, eventually, I did! This felt good, and was kind of a miracle actually, lol. Lujan’s teaching style was…I don’t know how to describe it…. It was challenging but also nurturing. Slow but also fast. Impossible but also possible. Anyway, it worked.
I’m not so “in touch with” my body, not a good dancer, etc. Most sets of moves whether it’s dance steps or martial arts katas are very hard for my muscles and my brain to learn. But I learned a lot and the Golden Lotus sequence just feels so sweet. It’s like my best friend now. I’m so thankful for it, and for your existence Lujan. Before the workshop I was basically just a few threads away from making the decision to permanently withdraw from human society, and have my spouse be my surrogate out there in the world, doing all my tasks and errands and work for me. Which the kind soul was willing to do to. Because he could see that I had reached some kind of limit. Your teachings give me strength to transform. Things are changing now.
Admittedly I haven’t had a complete life overhaul. I still wear perfume and I love makeup, I still eat meat, I don’t believe in aliens, I passionately support Hilary, etc. I just thought it might be useful to say this so that people know there aren’t uniform rules that students of Lo Ban Pai are expected to adhere to. At least not as far as I understand. I do listen to Lujan’s books (audio-books) almost daily. They are deeply satisfying, to say the least.
I’ll close with some quotes from the last day of the workshop. I didn’t take notes on any other day but during the final class, Lujan was giving us so many gems I had to take out my pen and paper—
-The only thing that matters is how you find the center of your own journey. And don’t fall from your own grace.
-The challenges are enriching. Youth is not wasted on the young. Your mistakes make you unique.
-Soft shamanism is to look within and proceed from the only opportunity that you’ve got.
-Be bigger than yourself by being of service to someone else.
-The craft that you practice is the craft of being who you are.
Thank you Lujan. And Naomi. And Mizpah. And to my Golden Lotus family, I hope to see you all again.