You may have seen the magazine photos of me that were taken last year. I’m sitting on a sandy beach, white clouds drifting above, palm trees reaching skyward, a peaceful ocean stretching to the horizon. I’ve lived on the Hawaiian island of Maui for some years now—after more years of visiting on a regular basis. If you’ve ever experienced the serene beauty of Hawaii, you’ll know how it feels to look out across the water and breathe in the warm, fragrant air. I am beyond grateful for the natural beauty that surrounds me here, the ocean where I swim every day (often with a posse of sea turtles), the opportunity to walk in dense green forests that are alive with birds and bright with flowers. Fellow Hawaii resident and inspirational author Alan Cohen says friends sometimes ask why he would want to live so far from the mainland. He replies by glancing around at this tropical paradise and joking, “Have you had your head examined lately?”
Maybe a cluster of islands in the middle of a vast ocean isn’t for everyone, but we all have an idea of paradise. As Melville said, “In the soul of man there lies one insular Tahiti, full of peace and joy.” Our paradise is always waiting for us. Heaven is a state of mind, not a location, since Spirit is everywhere and in everything.
Walt Whitman said, “To me every cubic inch of space is a miracle.” If you are traveling this summer or if you are staying home, look for the miracles that are right before your eyes. This month I will be traveling and speaking in the Spirit-filled “Land Down Under” for Hay House’s first ever I Can Do It Conference Australia. As I like to say, paradise is wherever I am.