Credit: Jeannie Selda, Los Chorros Falls, Costa Rica
Language tells us so much about the culture.
Quite a bit happened while I was in Costa Rica. I was hanging out in an international community called Eco Villa, where not just English or Spanish were spoken. I was then called to stay a couple of extra days, and wanted to watch something inspiring before bed. Each of the words below came from some aspect of my time in Costa Rica.
While watching “LIVE TO LEAD” on Netflix (great movie by the way), I watched a lawyer (Albie Sachs) for Nelson Mandela being incredibly courageous and irrationally optimistic about the world, especially after surviving a terrorist bomb. The word he offered in his interview was Ubuntu which resonates with my cells. It literally means “I am because you are.”
The day after, my Costa Rican receptionist wore a t-shirt with “Namaste” on it, and I repeated the word as I walked up to her. She smiled. It’s such a beautiful greeting with the insinuated meaning being ‘The God in me bows and recognizes the God in You’.
The energy of Costa Rica reminded me so much of Hawaii and its natural volcanic surroundings. Its original people are deeply connected to nature and the originators of one of my favorite words, “Aloha” – compassion and kindness to you today.
And finally, my last encounter in Costa Rica was with Manuel. He worked in a store in the airport. I wanted something beautiful from CR for my hubby and step-daughters. Manuel embodies ‘Pura Vida’. He has a kind, pure and simple heart filled with curiosity and love of connection. His final words to me were “Pura Vida”, of course.
So I’m passing on these words to you today.
Ubuntu – South African Noun – “a quality that includes the essential human virtues: compassion and humanity.”
Namaste – An Indian greeting – “I bow to you” (a Sanskrit word)
Aloha – A Polynesian greeting – “love, compassion, sympathy, kindness”
Pura Vida – A Costa Rican greeting – “simple life” or “pure life,” though in Costa Rica, it is more than just a saying – it is a way of life.
Part of my voyage to Costa Rica was sharing a retreat with the staff from The Wide Awakening. We pulled an inspirational card from a special oracle deck. The card we picked was “Your Words Matter”.
So, I thought I’d pay it forward from my trip by sharing some words that mattered for me on this voyage.
I’d love to hear!
P.S. I’m grateful that I will be doing a TEDX Talk in Asheville in the Spring. More information to come… so excited!