• Miami, Florida

    images_0 (5).jpegI woke this morning to what sounded like a riot in the street below the apartment.  Throwing back the curtain, instead of traffic, I could see a heavy crowd of people in jogging outfits running both directions.  It was a 5k run in the heart of Miami Beach Florida.  Looking out the window, there is an expanse of lush palm trees.  The city buildings shine platinum white in the sun.  There is not a single cloud in the sky.  The roofs of the buildings and houses below me are marbled with the stains of ocean salt.

    Miami is a confusing city on a vibrational level.  The city itself doesn’t have a particularly strong “signature”.  Meaning that if I were to close out all your senses so you could only feel a place on an energetic level, even if you had been here several times, it would be hard for you to tell where you were.  The city cannot really decide what it is.  Perhaps it is in the process of trying to reinvent itself now that it’s glory days are over.  I can’t help but observe that much of the design of Miami’s is reminiscent of a 1970’s porn film.

    escape-300x225.jpg The dominant negative vibration in Miami is escapism.  It is a similar feel to Los Vegas.  But the majority of the people, who go to Vegas, go there to temporarily escape their problems.  The dominant feeling in Miami is that people come here to try to permanently escape their problems.  The drug scene in Miami is worse than I could ever have imagined.  Most of the hotel rooms here are littered with the remnants of cocaine dust, regardless of how well the cleaners try to clean up; I can see it clinging to the wallpaper and draperies.  In general the people in Miami party hard.  Both drugs and partying serve as a good escape from one’s pain.  But the thing is you cannot really escape your pain, no matter how hard you try.

    So many people move here to escape their issues, wanting freedom of expression, only to find that they are triggered everywhere they go.  In Chicago, rage is a dominant vibration, but there is a safety to the rage because it is always present, like an undercurrent that steadily expresses itself through people.  In Miami, the fury is unpredictable.  The total lack of self-awareness that comes with escapism makes it so that when people are triggered, they fly off the handle.  They want to be able to express the pain they are suppressing so badly that it almost feels like they WANT a conflict.  They want an excuse to be able to explode.  They want to have a excuse to take it out on you.  I can feel and see the energetic memory impressions of rape very strongly here, more so than in other places.  This feeling in the social air of the city feels much the same way that a cat fight does when both cats are circling each other, but neither has taken a strike.

    revelry.jpg The dominant positive vibration of the city is revelry.  There is a boisterous flavor of festivity in the air.  I believe this is really what attracts people here the most.  In our day-to-day lives, pressure is everywhere.  Pressure to act a certain way, pressure to be serious and driven, pressure to succeed in a certain way, pressure to get it all done and get it all right.  This pressure is unbearable.  The expectations crush you, especially when conforming to those expectations means that you have to deny your positive authentic self.  People think that play is irresponsible.  So they crush it in themselves.  Miami provides a total release of all this pressure.  The freedom that is felt here is the freedom of the escape from that pressure.  Partying provides a pressure release.  It is an excuse to have no worries, no concerns and to celebrate.  Partying is also an excuse to feel socially free.  Social freedom comes in the form of status.  People who are financially poor and stuck, can’t afford to party.  In general, if we can party, we can afford to party and we are subconsciously doing so in part to claim a high position of social status.

    Miami is a champion of American indulgence.  Indulgence is allowing oneself to engage in the pleasure of something.  We can use indulgence in harmful ways, but we can also use it in wonderful ways.  When indulgence is used beneficially, it is like food for the soul.  It is a release of the painful, starved, captivity of abstinence.  This is one of the gifts Miami has to share with the world.  We hold onto our worries.  We carry them in our metaphoric backpack everywhere we go.  Sometimes, we need to feel the freedom of the choice we have to take that back pack off and lay it down.  It is not going to disappear when we do this, we should not run away from it and try to leave it behind because it will simply show up outside our door, waiting for us to put it back on, but we can lay it down in order to experience the relief of not carrying its weight for a time.

    miami-beach.jpg The beaches here are also magnificent.  Florida’s beaches are my favorite beaches I’ve been to so far in the United States.  I like the gulf side beaches the most for many reasons.  But the day before yesterday, I went to the beach and had the best time in the water that I can remember since being a child.  I walked out past the wave break despite my general feeling of utter vulnerable powerlessness amongst ocean creatures who have the advantage in every way and I felt my play impulse urging me to ride the waves.  So I did.  Like I used to when I was young, I swam in front of each wave deliberately pleading them to carry me into shore.  I was giggling and lost track of what time it was.  It was the most fun I’ve had in years.  The salt water of the ocean increases people’s frequencies immensely.  It strips negative energy from you.  It is so incredibly purifying.  I’m going into the ocean again today.  I’m determined to leave my seriousness by the wayside for the day.

    article-0-18D052BA000005DC-32_634x402.jpgWhen we are children, we know how to have fun. We don’t have to be coerced into play. We don’t need a reward to give us incentive to play. Play is just a natural, intrinsic function of being human or of being any animal actually. Naturally, we relish the experience of our senses, and we understand that enjoyment is all the motivation that we need to create anything we wish. We also understand that enjoyment is the only way to lead a healthy life. But what exactly is play? Play is defined as engagement in an activity for enjoyment and recreation rather than for a serious or practical purpose. This is where we have to stop and think. In the very definition of the word play, we find the dysfunction of the society we have co-created. We have all grown up thinking that play is not synonymous with any purpose. We have been led to believe that there is something more important than happiness itself.

    Then we grow up and wonder why we aren’t happy without realizing that we aren’t happy because we don’t take the straight path to it by prioritizing enjoyment. Rather, we spend our lives beating about the bush hoping that our happiness will come as the end result of other priorities like keeping a reliable job or reaching our goals.  Instead, consider that enjoyment has a serious practical purpose and ask yourself, how could I play today?

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