A moment of pure joy in “Shangri-La”

My piece runs today on the Shambhala Sun website, about our climb up to Taktsang, or Tiger’s Nest, in Paro, Bhutan. It’s a longer version of a scene from the opening of Radio Shangri-La, and kind of the moment I realized that being in Bhutan would change my life:


” It was around the halfway point that my giddiness suddenly, inexplicably turned to pure joy. I’d felt happy before, of course; I’d felt moments of transcendence at the most unexpected times; but this was different, as if a bolt of pure love and God pierced through me, and then enveloped me. Here I was in a kingdom, surrounded by people I’d just met but felt I’d known forever. (Though the truth was they were people I might not ever see again after this adventure was over. I wallowed in the pristine Himalayan air; all my worries, regrets, fears, everything evaporated. In that moment, everything that had happened to me in my 43 years on earth, good and bad and indifferent, came into focus. They had led me here. I felt ecstatic, alive in a way I’d never felt before, and I felt the purest sense of calm I’d ever known.”


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