As many of you know, I’m leading a retreat in Bali at the end of the month called the Bali Triple Goddess Magic Writing Journey. This is no ordinary retreat. I want to give some background as to why I’m holding it and in the process come out of the closet about my relationship with the goddess and the work I’m starting to do with her.

It all goes back to when I moved to Tokyo in 1981 and when I first visited Sensoji Temple, also known as Asakusa Kannon. I didn’t know why it moved me so much, but it’s a very grand place. I remembered being captivated by it and understanding nothing about it. But I loved going through the massive Kaminarimon, or “Thunder Gate,” which led up to it. The name meant nothing to me at the time but had shocking significance later.

I visited Sensoji pretty often and even made up some reason to do a story about the area when I was a reporter so that I could learn more and have yet another excuse to go back. I had no idea why that place had such a pull on me .

I loved going up the temple’s wooden steps, looking at all the strange and wonderful things inside, receiving my fortune on a tightly rolled piece of paper with unreadable Japanese characters all over it and then going to the incense urn to be blessed by the smoke.

I remember finding it odd and rather mysterious when I was told that the gigantic red lantern that hangs inside the temple was donated at great expense by local geisha. But other than that, as you will see in the video, there’s nothing to suggest that this temple has anything to do with feminine power or the goddess. That realization came to me later after a most amazing and life-changing experience I had in Japan.

I’ll save that for another post. It’s kind of a long story, so I’ll have to give it in pieces. For now, I hope you enjoy the video of one of my favorite places in Japan.