The Island of the Soul - Gili Air

Make yourself free from any appointments and connections.

Put your phone somewhere far away from reach and enter a place you feel the most calm at. You dim the lights and you position yourself in a comfortable reclining position. This is your time - a time of total relaxation, inner stillness and self reflection.

You start relaxing your muscles one by one, slowly breathing in and out. You allow the tension to melt away feeling a peaceful sensation flowing through your entire body.

You close your eyes and imagine yourself on a deserted island in Indonesia far away from any form of civilization. An island that is famed for being the Maldives of this Asian Continent.

It's early in the morning, and you are standing on a white sandy beach admiring the sun slowly rising. Mount Rinjani is silhouetted in the distance. You feel the tropical orange light warm your face and your body. Soft lapping waves gently break on the shore line. You are feeling content, relaxed and at ease. A light breeze caresses your face and you realize you have this island all to yourself. far away from any form of civilization.

You walk along the beach watching the veil of sun rays dissolve, clearly revealing the neighbouring islands of Bali and Lombok. You gaze off towards a small boat smoothly drifting along the sparkling ocean water coming to rest on a shore which somewhat resembles a port.

Tropical palm trees gently sway in the breeze as a horse drawn cart called a ‘Cidomos’ awaits the arrival of the guests enthusiastically wanting to explore the paradise you found yourself on. The horse stood firm proudly showing off its show jumping memento and decorations covered in bells and brightly coloured tassels. You reach the realization that the silence of the island can be attributed to the lack of motorized vehicles and you stare at this Cidomos in amazement at the traditional way of life.

The guests step off the boat not perturbed by the fact that the warm waters is lapping at their feet. They pause for a brief moment to appreciate this place of sublime beauty and simplicity. The peaceful looks on the faces are evident that they feel the same energy you felt on your arrival.

You continue walking along a narrow path meandering through native plant species feeling nurtured and still. You suddenly get distracted by the sudden movement of wild animals making its way through the bush. Confused you wonder if this is a deer or a cow. Approaching with caution, you walk closer to have a look - Its seems like these are evidence of the cross breading between both. The body is shaped like a cow, but the head and other bodily features resemble the deers commonly found in America.

As you take a few more steps you reach a simmering lake. The water is perfectly still, like a mirror, free from even the slightest ripple, and you feel its calmness within you. You make your way to a overhead bridge, with not a soul in sight and sit with your feet hanging over the edge taking in the stillness and silence this body of water has to offer.

Deeply relaxed you continue along the path for a few more minutes until you find yourself on the other side of the undeveloped island. The 15 minute journey was effortless and calm.

At one time or another you get a little caught up in the seriousness of life and the responsibilities that you bear. The pressure of day to day living has worn you down.

You reclaim your freedom, by undressing revealing a brightly colour flattering royal blue bathing suit. You walk into the ocean that awaits you. You feel the sand under your feet and feel the water lapping against your legs inviting you in.

The water slowly reaches your waist and your feet start to pain as you navigate your way over the flesh piecing coral that is illuminated by the bright sun. You take a deep breath and realize this is an obstacle you have to overcome to reach your destination. Calmness envelops you as you float on your back over the coral with the gentle currents pushing you in a direction you need to be in. You feel the motion and feel empowered by your mindset to overcome these obstacles as the turquoise waters washes away all your anxieties and worries.

You bravely flip over, fully submersing your entire body and head in the water. You swim against the current noticing boldly coloured fish gracefully swimming around the living coral.

You continue to swim even deeper noticing the colour of the water changes to indigo until you find yourself at Bask Nest – a sunken sculpture park that was created to rejuvenate the many fragile treasures beneath the sea. You can fully relate to the 48-life size human figures that symbolize the intersection between mankind and nature.

You compare yourself to each figure and realize that although sunken serves a purpose to reflect and appreciate on your own sunken desires that are still so beautiful that you need to bring back to life. As you swim inside it, it gives you a radiance and ability to listen to nature and yourself that you would not normally posses and it makes you become aware of more and more the things that are happening around you.

After enjoying this beautiful memorable sight you continue to make your way towards the shore with renewed energy and hope for the future. As your feet gently touches the sand, your body becomes enveloped by the warmth of the midday sun.

You enjoy the perfection of life and the radiance and vitality it has given you. You slowly open your eyes, bringing the memories of the beautiful island with you, remembering how you felt and all that it has taught you.

For a brief moment you where free from all the memories of the past, the concerns for the future and free of all form of responsibilities.

This is the exact sense of mediation and calmness I experienced on the few days I spent on the tropical paradise of Gili Air.