Live With Aloha. Gerry Lopez– ‘Surf Is Where You Find It’ tour.

Gerry Lopez concluded his 3 state book tourSurf Is Where You Find It’ tonight. Events were hosted by Patagonia in Sydney, Torquay and Currumbin.

Introduced by good friend Wayne Lynch, Gerry and Wayne chatted about the yesteryear when surfing was in its infancy, the hundreds of waves they rode and sessions they shared.

Gerry went on to reflect and comment on his book… Every word from Gerry was well thought-out, insightful and inspiring. Nothing could be said better than from the mouth of Gerry himself; If you were there, it was a life changing experience, if you weren’t you really missed it… Read on below for quotes from Gerry’s talk and pictures from his visit to Oz.

The Hawaiian’s believe there is a story for and about everything. They didn’t have a written language so it was by talking story that the traditions, the history, the lessons were passed from one generation to the next. This book is a collection of short story’s starting with my first wave, 10 years old at Waikiki, through the whole of my career to the present.

I titled the book surf is where you find it because not only have I found waves in a lot of different oceans, but I’ve also found waves in a few places without oceans and I’ve met a number of surfers who have never ridden a wave.

That’s surfing, different, difficult, forever appealing, somewhat irreverent, a little bit funny. Surfing is never ending education and the lessons don’t always come easily. Wisdom a funny thing, it’s a quality that keeps you out of situations when you need it. I’ve found that wisdom doesn’t necessarily come with age, sometimes age comes all by itself. Wisdom is always there in surfing. The guy who holds the ‘cat by the tail’ like surfing learns something you can learn in no other way. Some people pick up on that wisdom right away, others never get it but most people figure out something along the way it takes a long time to do that but its there.

Surfing is a sport full of wonderful characters.

That’s surfing, different, difficult, forever appealing, somewhat irreverent, a little bit funny. Surfing is never ending education and the lessons don’t always come easily. Wisdom a funny thing, it’s a quality that keeps you out of situations when you need it. I’ve found that wisdom doesn’t necessarily come with age, sometimes age comes all by itself. Wisdom is always there in surfing. The guy who holds the ‘cat by the tail’ like surfing learns something you can learn in no other way. Some people pick up on that wisdom right away, others never get it but most people figure out something along the way it takes a long time to do that but its there.

Carter Rollins playing their new self titled EP live in celebration of Gerry at torquay.

I have tremendous respect for both the mountains and the ocean. I find that they instill in me a great sense of spiritual-ness. I have spent many mornings looking at the freshly snow covered mountain-side. or nice waves peeling through an empty line-up feeling that I was really in the presence of something holly, something divine. There is a difference that I have observed in riding mountings as apposed to riding waves; the mountain holds still for the ride. Surfing happens on a seascape that’s continually in motion. The waves, everything is always moving. This is why surfing is such a great metaphor for life cause life doesn’t hold still for us. If we don’t move with it, life just passes us right by, it leaves us behind. Surfing teaches you to be in that moment spontaneously, go with the flow smoothly. That’s how you get the most of the wave and it’s also how you get the most out of life. The Chinese say ‘may you live in wonderful times’, while I believe that we do. This really is a wonderful time. Modern technology makes our lives pretty great; cell phones, personal computers, hybrid cars, medicines, medical techniques, food production, surfboard construction and design. All these things seams to improve to advance daily, the future it’s pretty bright ahead. But at the same time our world is not happy. While we are moving ahead in a lot of areas that will make life in the future better, we are going backwards in one really important area, in our own minds. In part, this social environmental crisis is a just a reflection of the chaos that is in our minds, in our collective conscious. I think the most positive step we can take to bring balance back to our planet is to start changing ourselves. Right now there is this epidemic of mental weakness; drugs and alcohol are over used, abused and offer no solution; they only actually make matters worse. Out of control emotions and imaginations plague our minds, those negative confused thoughts take prescient over the more powerful positive ones put is in a state of turmoil. Self-discipline can help us control our minds and our bodies, bring is a sense of peace. Surfing and yoga teaches us about living a life of harmony with nature. Speaking literally and figuratively, when you get caught inside by a big set you get pounded. When you stop breathing you die. You need to keep these things in mind because only by making ourselves better can we hope to heal our world. The Dali Lama says we are visitors here on this planet, we are only here 90–100 years, we must use this time to do something good, something useful. Be at peace with yourself and share that peace by contributing to other peoples happiness we can find the true goal, the true meaning of life.

The Dali lama was once asked what surprised him most about humanity and he answered man because he sacrifices his health in order to make money, and then he sacrifices his money to re-cooperate his health and he is so anxious about the future that he doesn’t enjoy the present. The result being; he is not able to live in the present or in the future. He lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived. So I would like to say that we are all here in this life to LIVE. Life is moment to moment, if somehow one moment escapes you, if you haven’t lived it to the fullest, live the next one too. Keep paddling, keep breathing through your nose, live with aloha.

surf pics– sprout daily blog

Background Photo: by Mike Tittel