I was busy welcoming meditation tour groups from all over the world throughout the summer season this year in New Zealand. The seriousness of participants seeking a new turning point in their lives through the meditation tour always moves me deeply. I see it in the eyes of visitors to this place, whether teenagers or elderly couples in their seventies: a pure longing to ceaselessly improve and grow closer to themselves. That pure longing truly makes us more human and draws out the greatness and beauty dwelling inside us.
A couple of things that made this summer season's meditation tours different were that Haruru Falls was added as a new stop and that participants could stay at the Haruru Falls Resort. Wherever I go, I always feel the energy of the earth and try to find good places for opening people's minds and bringing an awakening of consciousness.
The unique energy of Haruru Falls—which are located in a spot where the Waitangi River leads into the ocean at the Bay of Islands—captured my heart. These falls are neither grand nor imposing, but they greatly open consciousness, putting the mind at ease and eliciting acceptance and change. Drawn by the energy of Haruru Falls, I acquired the place after thinking long and hard about it, turning it into the new base camp for our New Zealand Meditation Tour
Haruru Falls is one of the sacred places that, since ancient times, the Maori people have visited to purify themselves before some great event. The Haruru Falls Resort is also New Zealand's first campsite. When I've had the chance, I've walked near Haruru Falls, listening to the sound of the rushing water and meditating. Whenever I've done that, the falls have brought me new inspiration, and I've shared their messages with the meditation tour groups who've come to New Zealand.
I want to share with you four things, wisdom for life, I learned from Haruru Falls.
1. Live well for one day, today.
Haruru means "roaring" or "great sound" in the Maori language, so the falls were named after the sound they make. When I heard the name, Haruru, what first came to mind was "haru," which in my mother tongue, Korean, means "one day." These falls seem to be shouting to me, "Live well for one day, today!" You live well for a week only if you live well for a day, and you live well for a month only if you live well for a week. You will live well for a year only if you live well for a month. Each and every day is that important. There is no tomorrow. Only one day, today, exists. You won't procrastinate or waste your time if you think of it that way. With this in mind, I will do as much work as possible today; I will act as much for the benefit of others
as possible today; I will meet as many people as possible today and share with them what I've learned in life.
2. Reduce the bad and increase the good.
For your growth and development, what should you eliminate or reduce, and what should you increase or create? Take time to think about this yourself. You should eliminate or reduce the bad and increase or create the good. It's so obvious. Whether you grow, stagnate, or move backward is determined by whether you do this self-analysis and self-examination regularly and put into practice the realizations you obtain through it.
3. Speak and act positively.
Don't be someone who scatters dark, heavy energy around them; be someone who shares positive energy. Even if you have a negative attitude, try to praise other people, smile and say positive things to them. Anyone can smile when they're happy. However, creating happiness by smiling even when your situation isn't happy is wisdom and power. In whatever moment you find yourself, choose to act and speak positively and to convey positivity to the people around you.
4. Choose acceptance and change.
The Haruru Falls are located in a place where river water flows into the ocean. To move into the sea, you have to change the habits and constitution through which you lived in river water. Fish that have lived in a river cannot live in the ocean unless they change their constitution. If they are to enter the ocean, they have to accept salty water. Fish that have lived only in a river cannot adapt to the salty ocean water and will obviously feel that they can't live in such a place. Whatever change you choose, it's natural to have such thoughts at first. However, to go from a river into the ocean, you ultimately have to change. You shouldn't expect the ocean to adapt itself to you.
If you are now encountering a significant turning point in your life or a moment of change, ask yourself this. Will I keep living in the river, or will I go out into the sea? What do I really want? If you want to go into the ocean, you should not fear saltwater. You have to accept it and change.
The reason I started meditation tours here in New Zealand is that I believe we are now at a great turning point, when the human species will go from its river into the sea. It is because I felt an awareness of a great crisis, a sense that humanity would have no future unless, setting aside our differences of country, language, and belief, we create a harmonious, peaceful, sustainable culture as citizens of the Earth. Nature here in New Zealand awakens the spirit of earth citizenship found in all people. Earth and sky here cause a quickening of the dreams and hopes sleeping inside you. The woods and waters of this place awaken infinite strength and courage in you, bringing out a noble mind that, transcending the small self, seeks to help other people and life. To show you the ocean inside you, I'm calling you to leave the familiar spaces of your life and come here to New Zealand.
I speak to Haruru Falls whenever I take a walk nearby. "Before long, now, thousands, tens of thousands of Earth Citizens will visit this place to hear your haruru sound. I earnestly ask you to give the people who come to see you the strength and courage to change from river consciousness to ocean consciousness."
If you want to go from your river into the ocean, come to this place, to New Zealand. Let's walk around Haruru Falls together, watching the river cry, "Haruru," as it passes over the falls and out into the wide sea. Together, let us witness the marvel of a great, beautiful dream awakening inside you.