Sunday, August 24, 2008

MysticBliss: Witnessing Yourself Dissolving

This lotus plant grows in our neighbor's pond.
(Photo courtesy of that neighbor!)

Listening to: A bit of Sufi for Sunday.

Today's Bliss: Morning espresso on the back patio, talking about one of my favorite topics -- the interior of our house and the different things we can do to the walls and the floors. We were looking at a library book, "Hacienda," and dreaming of a trip to Mexico. Oh, to visit here and here.

I'm reading Deepak Chopra's The Way of the Wizard right now, and it's quite captivating, as are most of his books. (My favorite right now being Life After Death.)

Some people see Chopra as spiritualityLite, but I think they are mistaken. He is a talented thinker and poetic writer, able to distill very complicated concepts into understandable bits. This in no way makes him "lite" but quite the opposite. I think the most difficult thing to do in writing or teaching is to take abstract ideas and make them concrete enough to be ingested.

In The Way of the Wizard, you can read the word wizard any way you want -- shaman, yogi, seeker, whatever works for you. Chopra is just working within the story context of Merlin, a wonderful, accessible Western myth.

Right now, I'm just at the beginning of the book, and he is explaining "seeing" or "witnessing."

It isn't easy to explain what witnessing is. In an ordinary waking state, we all see objects, but the witness sees light. It sees itself as one focus of light, the object as another, all in the context of a vast, changing realm of nothing but light.

Light is a metaphor for higher states of being. When someone has a near-death experience and says, "I went into the light," she means that she experienced a finer degree of herself. The light may take on the image of heaven or another world, but to the wizard our ordinary world is also only an image. It too is projected from awareness...

The boundaries we erect to divide heaven from earth, mind for matter, real from unreal are mere conveniences. Having made the boundaries, we can unmake them just as easily...

Every state of being, from the finest and most immaterial to the grossest and most solid, depends on the observer. If we wanted to, we could dissolve the solid page into nothingness, as follows: a page is made of paper, paper is made of molecules, molecules are made of atoms, atoms are bundles of energy at the quantum level, and bundles of energy consist of 99.99999 percent empty space. Since the distance between one atom and the next is quite vast -- proportionally greater than the distance between the earth and the sun -- you can call this page solid only if you are willing to say that the space between us and the sun is solid.

Play with this idea today.

Sit outside and sense the energy around you. Feel it playing on your skin. Imagine your skin dissolving into light and joining the light coming from the sun -- or the moon or the stars.

I find this exercise especially compelling in the water, as I have written about before.

Try it. Then write about it.

No comments: