Grown-Ups in Adventure Land

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We made a trip up to The Hermitage of Santa Barbara, where the whimsical world of HermiTed lives.
The place was best described to us before arriving by our friend, whom called it “the place where Alice in wonderland meets salvador Dali’s subconscious”. Sure enough as the tour unfolded we confirmed his statement to be true . It was wonderful.


The artist HermiTed began his artist career only 15 years ago at a young 65 years old, having made his fortune in the Real Estate business his whole life. Now 80, he shows his 200 plus art collection to small tour groups on an invite only basis. His 16 acre wonderland is an inspiration of whimsy meets

We happily frolicked among the  the lurid statues, our visual senses blown, sans the LSD.

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The car ride down with the gang was full of visions of a more peaceful world, a world where we are the leaders , all of our visions converge and create a more peaceful planet for all of us.

We were already reeling from inspiration when we were invited in, and stepped onto HermiTed’s 16 acre manifested subconscious.

Reflecting on it now, it seems that as a society we are confined to leave the land of imagination and fun behind with our childhood, yet more and more we’ve found that it is our imagination that saves us from our own destruction. Imagination is at the core of Solution Based Thinking. Without it, our greatest minds couldn’t have conjured up such helpful tools for mankind.

When we engage in Play as children, our imagination runs free. Why is it that we stop building this muscle and allow ourselves to shut this *essential* wellness skill off when we grow up?

16102763169_0ea0a4b4c8_cThe days of creativity, imagination, and fun don’t end with our childhood, my friends!

Yes, I understand that the demands of our society ask us to discard our risk-taking bravery, and to follow a more predictable path. We’ve learned at an early age that “to be wrong” = “disapproval + shame”. In order to socially protect ourselves we attempt to save face by stamping out our unique selves and convince ourselves that we are “not creative” leaving the elusive act of creating to a limited few. This is a sheer misunderstanding because we are all born creative leaders. Creativity is at the very crux of our existence.

When we drop our limiting beliefs and invite our child self to play with us, to take risks with us, and to imagine a multitude of possibilities, life starts feeling fun again. We start becoming eager for changes. We look at the road-less-traveled with curiosity, and live more authentically to our true selves.

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Joana Ayala

Co-Founder/Soundscape Director at True Participation
Joana is a zealous life-liver, an artist, and humanitarian. She derives much inspiration from self-reflection, a passion of hers that has yet to cease.
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