Leaving Las Vegas – Delusion Detox / by James Kelly

A long weekend full of excess and indulgence has come to a close, and boy, was it a good idea I decided to take Monday off of work to recover.

With a bit of a foggy head, when I laid awake in bed for a moment this morning before packing up, I was somewhat relieved it was all over. I gave the dark “yang” side of my soul lots of attention in Nevada’s Sin City. Vegas is such an obvious dissent from my normal foot forward of a yogi and a general promoter of peace, but I don’t explain my lavish weekend as a slip.

On one hand we could denounce Vegas labelling its culture of sin and thirst for “more,” as dysfunctional, but it doesn’t need to be cancerous or unsustainable if it’s done with awareness, and moreover I think it is important to pay tribute to both sides of our soul, the yin and the yang. Thus, dancing with the devil in Vegas can really just be about acknowledging how crazy we are, and hopefully enjoying it at the same time.

Having departed the phony and manmade land of wonders, and now being back at home, it’s time to cleanse the mind and body, making sure that delusion just doesn’t stick or become addictive. Physically it’s pretty simple with my green juice and routine of running and yoga, but cleansing the mind is much trickier. I think it starts with acknowledging our true nature and the dualistic planes in which we operate in this world. After acknowledging our inner crazy and the love to party and partake in what we’ve made, the next step is to not let the pendulum swing too far the other way. It's overcompensating to renounce manmade re-creation and recreation. Sometimes, I noticed myself in Vegas walking down the strip, thinking to myself, “gosh that is/they are so stupid...” This judging of course is just as crazy as the cast subject. Similarly judgingly, we could say Vegas is no match for Mother Nature, but human nature and what we make can too be beautiful and remarkable.

I think the beauty in going to Vegas is experiencing a part of our own delusion and dark side (you see it regardless of how much you’re really in it). The trick when we’re not walking our ideal middle way is “sustainable deviations.” Of course Vegas is so intense that single, short and/or infrequent trips are common. That’s certainly true for me. Now that I’m back where I spend most of my time, it’s time to take a big breath and realign to center today on my day off.

PS. From all the great fiction, food, EDM clubs, cocktails and socializing, I do have one souvenir picture from the bar last night with the quintessential bad ass SLJ in Pulp Fiction.