The Return of the ‘Hokey Pokey’

Most families have the standard stories that get rolled out at birthdays and other occasions about any given family member: the attempt at flying, sticking things up noses and in ears… In my case the most frequently told story was the ‘Hokey Pokey’.

‘Hokey Pokey’ is a children’s song where you stand in a circle and sing, “You put your left foot in… You put your left foot out… You put your left foot in and you shake it all about…” You would include different appendages until it was your whole body that was put into the circle.

The story goes that I was a master of the ‘Hokey Pokey’. I would play with a level of joy that was unrivalled, throwing my whole body into each rendition. However, at some point in my life I stopped. My parents could not work out why my joy and abandon were replaced with caution.

Over the past two years of Universal Medicine retreats, I have discovered not only why I stopped, but also why I loved it so much in the first place.

You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being. Connect to this fact and any movement is joyful.

As children this connection is simple, so of course I would “put my whole self in,” because it was what I was truly doing. I was playing with all of me, uncaring about what others thought, simply enjoying the feeling of my own body’s movements.

BUT… people watching this got jealous, and as a child, feeling that jealousy projected towards me I was left with a choice – maybe not a conscious choice, but a choice nonetheless. I decided it was better to tone down the joy than have people reacting to me.

Of course in reality, I wasn’t causing their reaction but it is often common logic to take the responsibility for someone else’s reaction. The result was that I stopped doing the ‘Hokey Pokey’ and in the years that followed I became very shy, especially doing anything that involved ‘standing out’ and being ‘on stage’.

At last year’s Universal Medicine Retreat, we looked at how we change ourselves through not wanting to feel the jealousy of others.

At this year’s retreat, we considered the ways in which we avoid feeling our deep connection to life and others. We explored the potential that each person we meet holds and what it is like to feel this potential. We also looked at what it might be like to move as an adult with the same abandon and joy, without fear of the reactions of others.

Check out these three photos: one from the days of childhood, one from this year’s retreat and one in the middle somewhere.

Universal Medicine Retreat - Joel Levin on Joy Universal Medicine Retreat - Joel Levin (Before Universal Medicine) Universal Medicine Retreat - Joel Levin - After Universal Medicine

In essence, through my own choices, and the learning and inspiration from the retreats, I have learned to ‘Hokey Pokey’ once again (metaphorically speaking), to put my body into life and shake it all about, because that’s what it’s all about…

Joel Levin - 2016 Universal Medicine Retreat
Joel Levin – 2016 Universal Medicine Retreat

By Joel Levin (Western Australia)

Related Reading:
The Livingness before and afters
The Joy and Vitality of Living Life
Born to Sparkle

 

622 thoughts on “The Return of the ‘Hokey Pokey’

    1. Yes Mary, to see and feel the joy in the photo on the left of Joel , along with a more recent photo from the 2016 retreat, is indeed joyous.

  1. “You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being. Connect to this fact and any movement is joyful.” God has been given such a bad rap in some religions and I agree that it couldn’t be further from the truth, as God is the source of the love and joy we come from. When I am touched by the Magic of God in how things play out in life it really shows the playfulness, joy and humour God has, it’s very beautiful.

    1. Joy is a very natural part of life when life is lived in the way that it was intended to be lived. The fact that so many of us not only don’t feel joy but also feel bored, agitated, frustrated, irritated, angry, fed up, annoyed, restless and basically totally brassed off is in itself a clear indication that we’re not living life in the way that it’s intended to be lived.

  2. How true, the reactions of others we make it ours and then we go into shut down mode, and we become someone/something else. If we all were able to keep that joy filled essence, by being nurtured and given the confirmation so we know it is innately within us always and from this knowing of who we are, life would be a different to place to live and be in.

  3. Our essence and the joy we felt as children remains within. However, with all the happens around us, we get to be masters at hiding it to such a point where we forget how to bring it back to life again. However, once we do remember that it was there, then to bring it back does no mean learning a new skill as such nor having to make a huge effort to read and study about joy and essence, but what it is about is to let go and allow it to come back into full expression.

    1. Once we know it is within us, we have to shed the things that don’t belong to us, which for some can be uncomfortable, and understandably so. And you know what? For me, It has simply been worth it. To know who we are, then pretending to be something we are not. It feels when we live from this, then life becomes more joy filled.

    2. True, Henrietta, as we can clearly see and feel Joel has done in his life, equally shown in his before and after photos.

  4. Joel, I love what you have shared and the pictures do say a 1000 words – the joy emanating from you as a child and what has now been brought back to life and expression again.

  5. I love how you describe God
    “You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being. Connect to this fact and any movement is joyful.”
    We are sold, told and have been saturated by a belief that God is vengeful, angry, tyrannical, controlling etc., basically it’s all negative and that we have to subjugate ourselves to his will. This has been passed down through the generations by religious people who claim to know him through their religious studies. But what if those religious studies were totally incorrect? What then are we left with?
    Well I feel God is the total opposite of what we have allowed ourselves to believe, we have allowed ourselves to believe what we are told because then it takes away the responsibility to actually find out for ourselves who and what he means to us; we have lost our sense of curiosity to discover something that holds the key to life – how crazy is that!

  6. I love the fact that the serious Joel is sandwiched by the hokey pokey Joel because it illustrates that our playful essence has never gone anywhere, it is us that mask it as we react to life and what it presents.

  7. A very powerful example of how children, our children, feel everything and yet, unless we the adults understand the energetic interplay that is happening, we will not be able to build a bridge for their expression, and so we will have another human who doesn’t feel it is safe to express

    1. That is true cjames2012, if the adults don’t have the expression or relationship with energy in their bodies, then it is harder for them to support their children to express what they are feeling and build a bridge to their expression.

    2. Most of us have shut down to such an extent that we’re simply not able to consciously feel the energetic interplay of anything and so our poor kids, although they do have a choice to stay the delicate and beautiful beings that they are, feel an enormous amount of unseen and unspoken about pressure to twist and contort themselves into ways of being that are simply not in keeping with their true nature and this dreadful sequence of events is what’s deemed as ‘growing up’ for most.

  8. This show that the joy never leaves us, we leave joy. And when you return – as you have done so joyously – it is there waiting to explode from our bodies. To shake it all about.

  9. Playful blog, Joel ! That is true. I find it at times easy to seek for distraction away from being in the present in the moment, but I always feel that always makes you feel shorthanded afterwards.. that is where I am learning that it doesn’t pay to check-out from being in the moment !

  10. A great reflection of the difference between being connected with our innermost and when we are not, beautifully reflected in the three photos and so easy to see when you are holding back from being all that you are.

    1. What’s difficult is that most of us are holding back the enormity of who we are are so we don’t have any true reflections of what it’s like to not hold back. We have taken those who are ‘high achievers’ to be the ones who are not holding back but this isn’t true, ‘High achievers’ are a mis-formed representation of not holding back but because not holding back in truth has nothing to do with what we achieve and everything to do with the quality of who we’re being then those who stand out for their achievements are also those who are holding back the enormity of who they are.

  11. “put my whole self in,” A beautiful invitation to rejoin the circle and put our whole selves in and feel the natural joy of knowing who you are.

    1. So true Mary, “putting my whole self in’ could be used as a saying for life itself – how about if we “put our whole selves” into life with the joy in all its abundance with no fear and no matter for how others reacted? Something we all crave to do (unconsciously perhaps for some) as it is our natural way of being, and yet we do tend to struggle so much with this and find it hard to put into practice. Hence reading a blog such as the one Joel has written is very inspiring as it effortlessly re-ignites the same joy within us all – and then it is a choice for each of us to keep this going or to go back to keeping the lid on life and our expression.

    2. I would say that there are only a handful of adults worldwide who actually put their ‘whole selves in’, most of us offer others a very tiny portion of ourselves and more often than not that small section of us isn’t even the real us, it’s a doctored portion that we’ve manufactured for effect. More and more I am increasingly more able to put the whole lot of me on the table for full viewing and it feels fantastic, not because I am a super polished and perfect person, not at all, more because I’m happy to be seen and that includes what others would deem as my faults. There’s something incredibly freeing about being ok with anyone seeing anything about me, I don’t need to consider what it is that I’m ‘putting forward’ because it’s all on display all of the time.

  12. “In reality, I wasn’t causing their reaction but it is often common logic to take the responsibility for someone else’s reaction” – this is so true and reveals where we go wrong in learning to be responsible, and how we end up associating ‘responsibility’ with a burden/limitation.

  13. Aaahh what a great one to read again Joel and yes you can see in the three different images how Joyful you were and are now but the one in the middle is showing such. Being un-apologetic for being who we are, enjoying this and expressing this to the max is exactly what we all can be doing. You’re a great inspiration Joel.

    1. How wonderful when we are able to stay living this way, ‘ I would “put my whole self in,” because it was what I was truly doing. I was playing with all of me, uncaring about what others thought, simply enjoying the feeling of my own body’s movements.’

  14. “You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being. Connect to this fact and any movement is joyful.” It’s so rare to hear the truth about God shared this way, quite a change from the view of some institutionalised religions and the vengeful, serious, judging and condemning God that is portrayed. I know for me that the more I connect to my soulful essence the more playful, fun and light I am, it’s s very natural part of being connected to God.

    1. Yes, it is lovely to hear the truth about God, ‘You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being.’

  15. Yes that is a great reminder: to not change ourselves when people react to us when we are truthful, joyful, very loving or understanding because when we do we will have one less inspiration for others to come back to our natural way of living.

    1. Absolutely, stay true to who we are, and let other people deal with what that brings up in them, ‘Of course in reality, I wasn’t causing their reaction but it is often common logic to take the responsibility for someone else’s reaction.’

    1. And if people do not like to feel that beauty and amazingness in you, then that is their choice, we just continue to shine no matter what, ‘At last year’s Universal Medicine Retreat, we looked at how we change ourselves through not wanting to feel the jealousy of others.’

  16. Commit in full, like a child does with not a worry in the world. We know how to do it, and just need to peel back the layers that have gotten in the way since.

  17. This blog really allowed me to see how much I have let go of that natural playfulness that I have, but also to feel how even as a young child I was not really that joyful except for the times I was alone immersed in Nature or playing by myself, where it was easier to feel my connection to me and to God. Although, this reaction of withdrawal to the harshness of the world will never bring true joy or contentment, as we need each other to share this joy truthfully.

      1. That sounds like a lot of fun Melinda, and when we connect to our whole body we also connect to its divine intelligence.

      2. To have fun, committing to life and living who we are in truth, ‘We also looked at what it might be like to move as an adult with the same abandon and joy, without fear of the reactions of others.’

  18. Love it Joel, put your whole self in, commit in full to life and appreciate how everyday lights up with both new learnings and new beginnings.

      1. For me it depends what we’re committing to that will determine whether or not we’re lighting up or dimming down. Anything that uses pranic energy to commit will ultimately dim us down even if we feel that it is lighting us up (spirituality, strenuous exercise, excessive fasting), whereas commitment that is fuelled by the firey consciousness will light us up like a Christmas tree!

  19. There is absolutely nothing like really committing yourself… Whether it be in something simple in your daily life, or for example in singing, or even, in the Hokey Pokey 🙂

  20. Life is all about living with purpose for the full potential of returning to the joy of knowing who we are in step with God.

  21. I just love watching children move with their whole body. The fluidity, the rhythm and vitality all make perfect sense and I can see and feel how at ease they are in their body and the effect this has on themselves and others. Like I am being touched by the magic of God.

    1. Yeah Monika I so love watching this in children and what I am even loving more is feeling me going back to this innate quality and feeling my body move in this fluid and easy quality. Life is much simpler and more profound than ever thanks the the teachings of the Ageless Wisdom as presented by Serge Benhayon

  22. Awesome you connected back to ‘God, actually the ultimate playful being’, and are putting your whole body into life again with the ‘risk’ of people being jealous. If we all allow ourselves to feel the God’s we are, there wouldn’t be any jealousy.

    1. It’s so refreshing to hear God being referred to as ‘the ultimate playful being’ because so often he’s portrayed as being a rather dour stick in the mud who’s prone to dishing out punishment when things don’t go his way.

  23. I just recently heard some wisdom about life and living in it, instead of withdrawing, shutting down and not committing. The key is to put everything into it i.e. participate and be part of all that life is. This will successfully give all that you need.

  24. Jealousy is a strong force that like Sauron’s eye in ‘The lord of the rings’ becomes very focussed on those who exhibit the pure delight of living their connection with God. It is one of the strongest forces that opposes us continuing to live the joy and fullness of who we are as kids. How inspiring to see the before and after photos and see the inner ‘hokey pokey’ back.

  25. “it is often common logic to take the responsibility for someone else’s reaction.” – I know I do it, I know other people do it. But reading this today didn’t make any sense to me…Why would I take on the responsibility of someone else reacting when that is their choice to do so?

    1. I agree Leigh, I have also come from feeling I am the one that somehow needs to change when I experience jealousy and bullying, but as I begin to explore this whole area I can see there is a lot of growth on offer to simply observe, to not take others reactions personally, to see the bigger picture at play and allow others the space to not be their true loving selves – and to also allow me to be all I can be without attachment to how others are.

  26. The ‘hokey-pokey’ is such a gorgeous analogy for commitment to life; for when we truly do commitment to life, life is fun.

  27. Lovely to read this again and be reminded that, “God …. is actually the ultimate playful being.”

  28. I find joy is one of the things that causes jealous reactions in adults more than most other things they see in kids. As adults we can see what we abandoned as kids and feel the resentment that a child is able to express it when we have lost this natural joy in life. This setup reminds me of how apprentices can be treated (bullying, initiations, made fun of etc), with the justification being that the older tradesmen went through it, so why shouldn’t the apprentice suffer as they did?

    1. Thank you Fiona for your comment and expanding the conversation, if we allow ourselves to be knocked down by jealousy and bullying we too can then become part of that same negativity playing out by directing those same energies at others. The initiation process you wrote of is an awful process of knocking others down to the same level we have accepted, which is to live much less than our true selves.

    2. There’s a part of us that’s soothed when other people are not doing so well, it’s like we can lay low and take a breath, whereas when people start to fire up and become joyful it rocks our boat and brings up the discomfort of why we’re where we are and the choices that we made to be where we are. For so many of us it’s basically annoying when other people are joyful because it’s a reflection we’d rather do without.

  29. Super cool Joel. You shaking it all about inspires the rest of us to shake off the dust that we can sometimes allow to settle on our shoulders, weighing us down like lead! Gosh, we get so serious and stiff sometimes don’t we? When we really look at it, we’re absolutely wasting time, time to be enjoying life and just having fun with it.

  30. Gorgeous example, gorgeous relevant picture displayed. A profound way of coming back to who you are and bring yourself into life in a way that is your natural expression, as we so dearly lost that! Gosh, every time I see a child I see often a playfulness that I am now thank God coming back to since I chosen for the Way of The Livingness and be a student of its teachings – from inside out. I discovered within myself this joy and playfullness again, that was still there, all I needed was a simple tool to come there.

  31. I love the sense that God is the ultimate playful being. Playfulness feels very natural and is surely innate in us all.

  32. Jealousy is an ugly energy that paralyzes us when it is directed at us for the mere fact that we are being us and choosing to move with us. For someone who has chosen not to do this, our freedom to feel joy is simply too much. The reflection they get is totally unbearable. So, we are confronted with a choice: whether to continue because we honor us and how we feel or to stop to help them out to continue swimming in their misery with no reflection that disturbs them anymore. The problem with the second option, of course, is that we turn the light off in ourselves.

    1. Beautifully shared Eduardo. It’s better that someone experiences the mini earthquake of their own reaction shaking them out of their comfort and their illusion by the reflection of someone living soulfully in love and joy, than to stay where they are and believe that ‘this is it’. Though jealousy is directed at the other person it’s really their own self fury related to their own relationship to evolution.

  33. Isn’t life so much more fun and joyful when we put our whole body in it and not leaving any part of ourselves out? From experience, the answer is, YES.

  34. When we tap into our inner playfulness we not only connect to God, but we also connect to the all. Our connection to joy is found in our movements and then this allows us to express our joy in any moment, so we can “hokey pokey,” to our hearts content.

  35. Jealousy feels horrible on the receiving end, and I’m sure many of us have toned down parts of ourselves so as not to be targeted, but what if the world needs a reflection of another way of living, of us being joyful, powerful, and loving?

  36. I love this sharing and reminder, ‘You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being. Connect to this fact and any movement is joyful’, time to let our playful and fun side come out again.

  37. “We also looked at what it might be like to move as an adult with the same abandon and joy, without fear of the reactions of others.” Your photos say it all – the contrast is tangible. I love the hokey pokey analogy. Let’s all ‘put our whole selves in.’

  38. Jealousy is such an awful thing to feel, particularly as a child. However, discovering through Universal Medicine that our learnt protection from it is to suppress our true nature and connection with God is even more horrible. Realising this the hurt from the jealousy no longer has the power

  39. I always love what you write Joel, I find your writing conveys important truths in a joyful and fun way.

  40. I sit here reading this and am amazed at how life has changed from my first experience of Universal Medicine at the retreat in 2011. Life is amazing and I’ve learnt that theres no need to hold back and not ‘shake it all about’ – shake off the misery and seriousness and feel the joy thats there underneath!

  41. Joel I look at you photos (not the one in the middle) but all I see and feel is joy and that committing to putting your whole whole body in and shaking it all about, brings that very joy.

    1. Commitment is only true when we commit with our whole bodies. If we only commit with a part of us then for all intents and purposes there is no real commitment. Saying yes has to be said unanimously with our whole bodies, otherwise it’s a no.

  42. Joel, I love your pictures, and the smile from the retreat matches the same joy you were expressing as a child. I don’t see the same joy from the photo in the middle.

  43. What jealousy can do to our lives if we choose to let us effect us, is indeed profound. I have seen it as well in my life, where iI also was this “Hokey Pokey” boy, who chose to withdraw from life.

  44. A lovely playful blog full of wisdom – there is indeed true joy when we commit to life and express our all.

  45. What a gorgeous story of returning to the joy you had as a child. When you talked about God being so playful and how kids naturally have that same playfulness as they are literally living in union with God, it made me realise how natural religion (our relationship with God) is. Kids don’t get embarrassed, deny or hide the fact that they are in the sandpit with God. Why would you when this is our nature? It’s only when we feel the false versions of religions and judgment from others that we question or doubt this.

  46. Oh the pure joy of it all!!!Thank you for sharing Joel I can feel the joy dripping off the page and the photos say it all!

  47. Yes great inspiration Joel. I am throwing myself into life more and more as I did as a child. I was throwing myself into life for a long time, but that was more based on missions, ideals and dreams, with no true playfulness leading to pursued peeks and holes where I came tumbling down in.

  48. I am feeling the joy Joel, what a blessing. I love being playful and have noticed that even in my own home it presses buttons because at school you simply do not make a ‘fool’ of yourself. School squashes so much of our playfulness. I can see it is my duty to keep that playfulness rolling though now! Thanks for the reminder Joel.

    1. Who doesn’t like to play, seriously who? and yet so few adults play unless they’ve had a drink or are on drugs. There’s a playful side in us all and yet in so many of us it feels dried up and very long forgotten.

  49. I realised recently how after moving to Europe the spark of joy and ease and openness towards simply laughing and having a bit of fun was somewhat reduced and it actually feels less ease here to naturally express this way! I did not realise just how much I have adjusted my expression to what I feel from others around which was a lot more than in New Zealand. The choice to dull may be subconscious but it is definitely a choice nonetheless. A choice we can change at any moment.

    1. It’s so important to realise these markers, to know what is natural to us so we can assess when we drop how to support ourselves to come back. Our love and joy is simply precious.

  50. Love it Joel, you certainly do put your body into life and ‘shake it all about’. The freedom of movement and joy just in your photos (young and most recent) captures exactly that.

  51. Jealousy is a veritable kill joy and destroyer, especially of children’s innocence and very natural exuberance and boundless vitality and playfulness.

    1. There is a simple joy in just being ourselves but the trouble is so few of us are just ourselves, we’ve re-interpreted ourselves so many times that most of us don’t bare any resemblance to who we originally were as kids and that, in a nutshell is why most of us don’t have any real joy in our lives.

  52. Wow Joel, your photo’s say it all. You have the same joy-full radiance now as you did as a child. An incredible inspiration to see that throwing our whole body joy-fully back into life is true medicine.

    1. I agree Kim, the most recent adult photo is very like the photo of Joel as a boy. This is something we give up on living as adults, the joy and exuberance we felt as children. As Joel shows, it’s actually very possible with the support of Universal Medicine.

  53. It’s amazing how we abandon our natural selves in order to not rock the boat. But understandable too, for jealously from others can be very difficult to withstand, especially when it comes from people we think or expect should love us unconditionally. So, mastering being OK with what triggers others into a jealous reaction needs to be high on the personal development agenda!

  54. In this most recent photo of you Joel you can feel your joy and lightness shining through – how powerful is it to live in the world unaffected by the jealousy and attack from others and to reflect true love and brotherhood with our every movement.

  55. You can feel your re-commitment to life Joel. All in for whatever the universe has to offer. Like with children its a beautiful quality that is hard to resist. We know from our friends, colleagues, and those around us who is still up for it, and who has withdrawn to a safe place and tempered their expression of who they naturally are. Yet we always carry it with us, and the choice to reconnect is never lost – always just a step away (be that the left foot in or the right foot in!).

  56. Thanks Joel… It is possible to have that sense of fun and innate joy in our movement even as we get older… It is possible to restore that innocence, that sense of just simply enjoying ourselves move… And when we do it is the most wonderful feeling

  57. It is too easy and comfortable to stay in one place – put life in the old body and shake that grace out for all to see.

  58. The key to our relationship with God is this: ‘You see God – that dude that many of us struggle to define and relate to – is actually the ultimate playful being. Connect to this fact and any movement is joyful.’
    And a killer of a sentence of truth is: ‘I have learned to ‘Hokey Pokey’ once again (metaphorically speaking), to put my body into life and shake it all about, because that’s what it’s all about’
    You just offered us the keys to change our lives forever.

  59. Joel the photos really highlight what you have shared. The same cheeky ‘Im all in’ smile is evident in the photo of you as a child and the one now. The one somewhere in between is completely different – withdrawn from life, hiding and not offering you. Learning about jealousy and what it is and what it means for us as people and how to deal with it when we feel it has been one of the best things that I have learned in this life.

  60. I realise the more people on earth that are living and feeling joyful, it becomes easier for everyone else to reconnect to it too. This shows how interconnected we are and how we affect each other through our choices and movements much more than we realise.

  61. It is quite shocking to consider how much we deform ourselves in order to not feel jealousy. Jealousy is an evil force that serves only to diminish the brilliance of our connection to our divinity, and how our appreciation of this in ourselves and others confirms our purpose here to grow, learn, flourish and inspire each-other to evolve so we can live the joy of being all that are, in true Brotherhood.

  62. Having got back from this year’s retreat in the UK it was cool to get a reminder of the past two. Whereby there were presentations based around the fact that eventually jealousy will not be the terror that it can be/is today that we all try to avoid. And that we are supported by many ways in life to do the Hokey Pokey, to be light and playful without hesitation. This future can be lived today and I feel this occurs when we take that ‘risk’ and re-introduce playful, silly, light-hearted moments into our lives.

  63. And what an evolution to see the beautiful and tender man that writes so playfully and so elegantly, building bridges that anyone can simple walk over on the way back to their own hearts.

    1. Love it Chris, such a profound statement that hold water and can keep us all afloat. Could it be we forget about the bridges and life saving buoys because in the current of life we either sink or swim under our own way of play Hokey-Pokey. So as Joel has so simply shared by producing photos in which it is plainly apparent he is swimming again within the divine Light of his Inner-Most Heart.

  64. Very cute Joel – this is a really lovely sharing of what it is to be our full selves. SO many times I have held back my fulness because I am scared of what others think – but the truth is – I am just playing a game with myself to not be all of me and find an excuse in others to justify this.

  65. I drop into the pattern of taking the responsibility of other people’s actions as well, but when I truly stop and ask myself, why would I question myself before I question others? Having a level of appreciation, trust and love for myself, I know where I come from and what my essence is, and therefore when I sense another’s reactions and responses now, it is much easier to be light hearted, observe and ask why they are having this reaction, knowing we are actually all equal in playfulness as God, and why wouldn’t we want to show this with each other?

  66. It feels simply amazing to re-connect to our body in every movement and feel the absolute joy, lightness and freedom to simply be ourselves in full. Very cool indeed thank you Joel.

  67. Wow. The guy in the middle looks and feels so different. I would not recognise him as you, Joel. I kind of don’t really want to say say ‘joy has always been there within and never lost’ because that feels like it is a given (although it is in truth) that you re-connected to your true essence, but it is a miracle, not by luck – but by choice.

  68. I have to be truly grateful to my daughter as she makes me realise how serious and lacking in the joy of life I can be sometimes, getting caught up in life. Sometimes when I see her laugh so open and unrestricted and be so excited about things or events coming up it just brings up the hokey pokey in me as well something I also lost but is on the come back.

  69. Joel the way you write is so up lifting and joyful, thank you reminding us that the joy lies within us, its up to us to play the hokey pokey and put our whole body in, shake it all about and express with full joy.

    1. Playing the hokey pokey in life can only come from the natural progression of returning to the bodies that we had as kids because if it comes from either a mental intention or wishful thinking then it will be like so many of the other things that we attempt in life, a mental attempt that comes devoid of any backing from the body and as joy comes from the body it simply won’t work.

  70. Much the way you returned to the Hokey Pokey, I very much enjoy returning to this blog. It is a very joyful piece to feel.

  71. Your writing always puts a smile on my face… whilst also highlighting a truth… in how we have all chosen to not do the hokey pokey in life and have settled for a much more measured version of putting our whole self in according to how much of ourselves we are willing to express and be seen doing so. It’s a great analogy and a great reminder of the joy we are missing out on from choosing this.

  72. Joel love the 2016 photo of you – gives me joy just looking at it… even though I don’t need any reason to feel joy because it is who and what I am.

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