I Hugged a tree in Sedona, and to my surprise, it had a message for me.

Two weeks ago, I headed to a retreat at Mago Sedona Center in Arizona to replenish my soul and take a break from my hectic life.

The Center is 15 miles outside of Sedona on a 150-acre reserve. It offers a combination of Tai Chi, stretching, resistance training, and aerobic activity and is run by the same group and Tao masters that we work with at Body and Brain Yoga back home.

The Mago Sedona center provides a perfect break from my busy life, which includes running a business, going back to school, publishing my book and starting a new coaching business.

It is astonishingly beautiful there. Surrounded by the famous Sedona red rocks, the reserve has many vortexes on its property, and the energy is both soothing and invigorating.

My husband was in a 3 day meditation group, and I had gone along to have some quiet time, where I could give my self permission to do nothing..

I had done a heavy metal detox right after I completed writing my book, and releasing all of those metals from my bones and my fat had clogged my liver and put me into a flare, where some of my autoimmune symptoms were back. I was feeling discouraged with my body, and needed a moment to regroup and decide how to move forward.

My first morning, I had been assigned to join Master Susan for a quiet hike of the lake and some of the grounds. I was joined by a college student that had just started her summer break. Her mother was also in the meditation group with my hubby, and we were on our own.

Master Susan led the two of us around the lake, with our eyes down, so that we wouldn’t see the beauty of the location we were in, but would feel it instead. As we came to a trail leading up to a waterfall, she instructed us that with every step, we should take our negative thoughts and problems and place them in an invisible sack on our hip. We were to “feel” this bag getting heavier, and with every step, more and more negative thoughts were being tucked away. When we approached a bridge over the stream at the bottom of the waterfall, we stopped, took our bag and emptied it into the water and watched our troubles and negative feelings wash away. It was a very cleansing experience.

We continued down the path until we came to the giant tree photographed above. I wasn’t allowed to take a photograph at the time. Master Susan didn’t want us to interrupt the energy, so I returned to this spot later in the day to get a record of the tree.

This tree is considered on the compound to be a very wise tree. We were asked to approach the tree, and then ask permission to touch or hug it. The tree would let us know when we could ask a question, and if we were lucky, the tree would answer.

So I asked permission, and approached this magnificent tree; I touched it and closed my eyes. I was still for several minutes. When I “felt” the time was right, I asked it my question. “What did I need to do, to help myself heal again?”

The tree was quiet at first. All of a sudden, in my mind, I saw a large eye, like an elephant’s eye, open and stare at me. It was a large single eye, wrinkled with age, and it looked right into my mind.

It stared at me for several moments, evaluating. Suddenly it snapped closed. I waited. Nothing. Then I asked my question again. “What did I need to do, to help myself heal again?”

Again, the tree was quiet for some time. All of a sudden, I saw 2 smaller eyes, looking right in to me.

They were still wrinkled and wise, but softer and kinder than the one larger eye, and they looked at me for a longer period. These two eyes stared at me for some time, questioning.

All of a sudden they snapped closed and the tree laughed at me. “What a silly question” it said. “You know the answer to that question.”

I backed away from the tree. It wasn’t what I had expected. Actually, I hadn’t known what to expect. I giggled. Yes, we forget our higher selves often do know the answers; we just don’t touch in to listen to that wisdom.

I reapproached the tree and touched it one last time, and thanked it for setting me straight. It was indeed, a very wise tree.

The next morning I returned to the lake, and sat on the little island known as heaven on the grounds. I made a list of all of the things I had done in my journey to wellness over the last 5 years. I had my marching orders, and started putting them back in place the minute I returned home.

Remember, eat to live, don’t live to eat. Feed your body the building blocks it needs to keep you thriving. Garbage in, garbage out.

Published in Health