This experience occurred between 10:00pm and 11:30pm PST on 1 Nov 2014!
When I sat down and began typing, my intention was to create an outline for addressing Velcro thoughts. The outline was coming together fine, but I know from experience that outlines are usually insufficient for me, and must be used and tested to ensure correctness.
These are the questions that I had written:
What is this thought that I am having? Provide a very clear description of the thoughts itself.
Why do I believe that I am having this thought? Provide a very clear description of the assumed root.
What effect is this thought having on me now? Provide a very clear description of the associated feelings.
What is it about this thought that makes it ‘velcro’? Provide a very clear description of the thought pattern.
After the fourth question I decided that my efforts would be better served if I simply stepped myself through my most challenging Velcro thought. The goal was to explore WHY I felt the need to coopt our greatest spiritual teachers into my own spiritual experience and call myself special.
I did not get very far in my writing.
Suddenly everything stopped. My ears rang loudly inside, but at the same time, it was as if my hearing had been cut off. My body simply vibrated and flowed. Everything became energy – not in a physical sense, but I could FEEL the energy within myself.
I sat in this state for what felt like several minutes. Unable to move – caught in this overwhelming sense of pulling, pushing, and being drawn upward and outward. After a few minutes I was able to move, but only enough to slide comfortably into my office chair and lean back.
By this time my eyes were closed but there was a strange mix of shifting bright and dark light that I was peering through, almost like a kaleidoscope. The pulling and pushing continued – the energetic sensations continued to arise. It became incredibly intense and incredibly frightening.
During this period, I was experiencing what I can only express as a battle of wills. The force of energy kept pulling gently upward and I kept resisting. I did not want to resist though. THIS EXPERIENCE WAS UNMISTAKABLE!!! I knew what was happening – it was the moment I’d been waiting for!
For several minutes the only three things that existed in the universe were my body, the energy, and our colliding forces of will. Over and over again I tried to give into it – to surrender. Over and over again I resisted – thin strands of resistance kept me tethered in place, unable to break free.
Over and over again I cried out internally and externally ‘YES’! Yes to whatever it was… Yes to whatever it wanted… Just YES! But it was not enough. No matter how much I wanted to surrender, it would not come. There was just the upward pulling and my resistance to being pulled away.
Over and over again I looked to my thoughts and saw them for what they were, but the fear of death kept coming – and then I realized that thinking of ANYTHING at this point was hindering the process. It was still not happening for me though – and so I moved again.
I got up and walked through the back of my office, into our laundry room, and out into the cold, dark, damp night. During these moments I remember feeling very concerned that perhaps I had missed it. Maybe I wasn’t supposed to move – that moving meant failing.
There was a chair outside – I sat down in it for a moment and laid back again. The energy jumped right back into place as if the process hadn’t been interrupted at all. But this position was much like the one in my office and after less than a minute I knew that it would not be enough either.
I got up again and laid down on the deck in full spread eagle position, staring up into the cloudy night sky. I closed my eyes again – and again the energy, the pressure, and the battle of wills returned. This time the intensity was incredible and indescribable beyond words.
Over and over again I tried to clear my mind, to let go of thought, and to surrender myself. Time and time again I failed to break the threads – but, eventually, the threads began to loosen and slip a bit. Eventually it was as if there were 10 threads and then a battle, 9 threads and a battle. 8 threads and a battle. And so on.
The last thread would not give way no matter what I tried to do – no matter HOW MUCH I wanted to let go or how willing I was to sacrifice myself; to surrender in absolute totality. And then, as I laid there surrounded by energy, light, and helplessness, a face came to mind.
Earlier that day I had adopted a 1 year old child from Indonesia as a part of the Worldvision program. My commitment seemed so small and so simple at the time, and it felt so right to bring love and hope into the world of this small boy.
It was his face that came to me as I laid there. His face!
In one last gasp, I cried out into the night – FOR HIM! FOR ALL OF THEM!! FOR EVERYONE EVERYWHERE!!! And I let go – really and truly just let it all go. The final strand fell away and I felt myself pulled upward and out of my body… But not really… I was still there, but now I was just watching what was happening. Aware of it all…
In those moments, I saw myself emptied of darkness and refilled with light. It was through the eye that does not see, but through the eye that knows. Through this eye, I watched as my energy gathered, shifted, and settled back down into me. And then – for a moment of time, there was absolute joy… it was the sensation of completion.
I do not know how long I laid there for. After a while the energy began to die down – the ringing in my ears began to quiet – I began to relax. After a few more moments I realized that I was freezing cold and shivering from head to toe. I gathered my senses, stood up, and stumbled back into the house.
Freezing, I went into the bathroom and turned on the hot water in the shower to full effect. My faculties were barely registering – all I knew was that I needed to get warm again – to lay down in the tub and let the warm water rinse the cold away.
I did not even bother removing my clothes. I just laid down in the tub, with the shower running – and felt the warmth of the water raining down on my body. And then the energy returned again – but now in a muted form, with no pushing, pulling, or pressure… It was more of a probing energy.
In that moment, lying in the tub, the final realizations came to me… All of the aspects of the I that is not I, the universe, the nature of oneness, all of the things that I’d already been experiencing… but this time they were different and this time a new realization came with them.
This was the end of the road. From this point forward, the man that I was had fallen away completely. Now it was up to me. The probing energy was telling me that I now had a choice to make. Given the choice now, as artist; given the choice now, of expression; what choice would I make?
This was a peaceful and sublime moment. Laying in the tub, fully clothed, with hot water caressing my body and tears of joy coming from my eyes, the energy holding me in a blanket…
Continued in Part III.