Hollie, Bo, Christopher and I have just returned from a sea pilgrimage swimming in the wild with whales, dolphins and an occasional turtle. It was our ninth visit to Tenerife, in the Canary Islands. Our hosts are Winny & Kees who have been leading their Ocean of Love pilgrimages for twenty years now. This year we came with our friends Jo and her son KK, Adele Napier and Rebecca Campbell and her husband Craig.

Winny and Kees enjoy an intimate relationship with the whales and dolphins. They know intuitively where to meet them. “My love for the whales and dolphins is my guide,” says Winny. Each day we set out on the Ocean Delight, our eight-metre RIB boat. Winny leads us in a meditation. She opens up what she calls “the channel of communication” to the whales and dolphins. We then set out to sea, travelling up to ten miles from shore, following our intuition, paying attention to signs, and looking for fins!

Each sea pilgrimage with Winny & Kees offers a unique set of gifts and lessons. No two days at sea are ever the same. Here’s five lessons I’ve learned.

Relax And It Will Happen

On some days, we meet dolphins or whales as soon as 20 minutes out to sea; and on other days, it takes a few hours. The dolphins and whales arrive when we are truly ready. When we are in “a state of relaxation” as Winny puts it, they appear – like divine, playful thoughts – from nowhere. This isn’t about getting something from the whales and dolphins; it’s about being together. When I feel full inside, I attract miracles in abundance.

Really Seeing Each Other

Over the years, I’ve had many holy encounters with both dolphins and whales. When I look into the eye of a whale I am always completely undone! The whale’s eye sees through me and right into me. It’s impossible to hold on to my story, my psychology, my human costume, my past, my wounds or my little “me”. And after each encounter, when I close my eyes at night, the first thing I see is the eye of the whale. Still looking into me. Like God is watching over me.

One Infinite Intelligence

On my first swim, in 2011, three Pilot whales greeted me. They were standing upright in the water. Each one five meters long. They approached me carefully, so as not to frighten me. As they got closer, maybe 4 or 5 feet away, they turned on their sides to look at me. I was struck by how intelligent these great beings are. They don’t seem to suffer from psychology, like we do. They are tuned in to a consciousness – a mindfulness – that is as deep and wide as the sea. Together we are part of the One Infinite Intelligence that is life.

Communication Beyond Words

Swimming with whales and dolphins has taught me that real communication is beyond words. Many times in my life I’ve tried to talk to God, speak with the Angels, or listen to my heart – and I’ve heard absolutely nothing! No words. Or, I’ve sat down to write a chapter or a poem but, once again, no words came. I’ve learned that when there are no words it’s an invitation to communicate more directly and more intimately heart to heart, soul to soul. Once the Oneness is established, the communication happens in full with or without words.

Made of Love and Water

For me, the dolphins are joy and the whales are peace and the whole experience is love. Winny and Kees call their work Ocean of Love. Biologists and mystics agree that we are all made of the same universal stuff arranged in different patterns and shapes. What is this universal stuff? My daughter Bo, when she was 5 years old once told me, “Daddy, we are all made of love and water.” It’s true! I know it’s true because Bo told me and because I’ve swum with whales and dolphins.

I wish you a beautiful day.

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