"We are all of us stars, and we deserve to twinkle." ~ Marilyn Monroe
I am writing you this letter from Hollywood, where I am spending the summer solstice. It is a pure pleasure that I am here to embrace the teachings of yoga from a few of my most favorite, highly esteemed teachers. I adore these women for their big hearts, trusted wisdom and the energy to share it while they hold space for personal growth, transformation, deep reflection and the courage to stretch and reach beyond what we think is possible.
The studio is situated in the quaint village of Larchmont, several miles from here, so I will ride the metro daily to and from classes. My days begin with a luscious view of the Hollywood hills and the sprawling city stretched out beneath it. Dressed in my soft, light yoga gear and running shoes, I am greeted by the doorman. He wishes me well and then points me in what I hope is the right direction.
I am headed to the Hollywood Walk of Fame to catch my bus, which, as I learned over the course of several days, does not run on a set schedule. In reality, I don't have a clue as to what time I will actually arrive at the studio. So, each morning, my stroll is deliberate and brisk, although I'm careful not to miss a single moment of who it is I am passing by.
I receive 'good morning' greetings from a kind young homeless man, a boy delivering freshly cut flowers to the corner market and an elderly woman bent over her cane waiting for the light to change. Although I don't know a single soul, there is a sense of belonging that no one deserves to be here more than anyone else. Everyone I pass is doing their best on every corner of every street.
Of all the things that make up an ordinary day, travel offers the ultimate opportunity to open us up to what each new moment has to offer, to try something new and ultimately to look at life through new eyes.
As I move closer to the Walk of Fame, the stars begin to shimmer in the morning light. My gaze drifts through the golden tapestry of stars etched with each actor's name, and I begin to wonder what it must've felt like for them. Stars you and I began watching on the big screen from a very young age – the glamour and the glory only to last a short while.
Then, like a vision, a little elderly lady appears gracefully supported by her walker, her feet shuffling slowly over the sea of stars, her chin is up and she walks with purpose. I could not help but feel a sense of wonderment towards her. She must be 90. She's lived to see and feel everything imaginable, and she must have stories to tell! And I think to myself, now that is a star!
It got me thinking about what a star represents. As it turns out, 'You are a star' originated in Ireland and is an all-around compliment that means you're a great person, you've risen to the occasion and been generally wonderful! It existed long before the whole movie star thing and came from the symbolism of a bright shining star.
In ancient times, the stars were the only navigation system used by explorers to map their routes and reach their destinations. Stars represent a guiding light, a direction and finding one's way.
A star's pure light is often associated with spirituality and the divine and represents wonder, mystery, beauty and the connection between us and the universe.
Stars represent faith, illumination, enlightenment and knowledge.
They can also be a symbol of hope as it is directly associated with light and the wonder you feel when gazing up into the infinite night sky.
May the light of summer shine ever so brightly upon you, and always remember you are being guided by the light above and the spark within.
You, my dear, are a star!