A long, long time ago….
I first saw the the delusion: I am not what I think I am.
In the space of non-doing, in a Zen temple I had my first (adult) taste of something delicious: simply BEING.
It was fleeting but the memory of the feeling lingered long after: Wholeness. Oneness. Infiniteness.
The taste became a little flame, which in curiosity I gave space to burn brighter.
But dark clouds were stacking on the horizon. My ego was hungry for attention and validation. My personhood needed feeding.
The fire within washed away and the taste of living through BEING was soon a hazy memory. The last tendrils of stillness flew away in the wind.
I hunted for this thing called security. And in doing so I forgot I’m securely connected to all life…
In scurrying for safety I gave away my freedom. In seeking security in the herd I become more insecure.
My ego became entrenched and over-bearing. “I am you without which you are nothing”, it said.
I was worn out carrying the fears and pretending to be important.
Deep within I sensed a cosmic joke playing out… and in serving my fears, I’m the punchline.
But without conviction, wisdom or tribe… I followed the crowd.
I work longer hours. I scorn and judge others. I become angry at the world. I accumulate stuff. I close deals.
I log in and flick down…. and down. I look successful, but inside I ache.
I judge myself, I loathe what Im becoming. I listen to the voice that whispers: “You’re not good enough… this is your lot”.
I crumble into servitude but hustle hard to compensate. I return home each day to numb myself in distraction and substance abuse.
My creative impulses die in the womb.
I hear myself saying: “One-day I’ll…..”
But the one day actually arrives.. and it’s far from glorious. I simply can’t run, hide or pretend anymore.
I’m an animal chased by my shadow, and Im close to exhaustion, breakdown. Nobody can tell. They all think Im successful.
My ego is a master pretender.
Lying awake at night, in the darkest cave of self-loathing a memory is rekindled. A treasure locked so deep in the vaults.
Hot coals somehow still alight. A memory of that taste of Zen unity and flow. I hear the whisper: “Let it go. Let it flow.”
My soul wants to fly free. It wants to be liberated.
So I commit. To soul expression.
I quit the race. I find stillness, amazing waves, and space in a sacred place.
And there I stumble once again, on the knowing in the slowing… the growing in the flowing.
Memories of motherly embrace I find in the ocean. A sense of childish exploration I discover in jungles.
I belong to this earth. I remember my NATURAL WILDNESS.
I de-colonise my mind. I un-domesticate my consciousness.
The urge to rebel against the dark side is being birthed.
But it’s terrifying.
I must keep shuffling up to the edge. To jump requires cutting away at the cords of image.
Family and friends know me as someone, and part of me is attached to their perception of me.
“What am I… if I’m not this?” I can’t yet answer. It’s far too nebulous and opaque.
I wish there was an easier way to find out than jumping into the unknown…
So I hesitate. The rational mind does what it does. I think of money, career, future prospects. I try to create plans. A way out.
I look for safety. I think of reputation.
“What if I’m not good enough? Shouldn’t I be grateful for what I have? What will they think of me? What if I fail?”
Death throes of the ego… it’ll try anything to stay alive.
Standing at the edge I look back holding tight to anything I can grasp.
I know many die right here…. frozen at the edge until its too late, taking regret to the deathbed.
The fear is crippling. I have no map. My wings are untested.
But somehow I draw breath… and I plunge into the void.
Downward and downward.
Like an eagle on the hunt, plunging into the dark abyss where the darkest of secret fears fester, the gloop and the gunk that only I know.
I grab stories, labels, patterns and dogma and swoop back into the light where they evaporate into nothingness.
Again and again. And again. Skill builds. Obstacles are overcome.
New wisdom fills the spaces where before lay fears.
The ego kicks and screams but without shadows to hide in, it’s dying in the bright light of my BEINGNESS.
The delusion is fading. I am slowly awakening… and awakening and awakening to the simple truth that underpins all awakening:
I never was my ego. I never was this bundle of fears. I never was this social construct of labels and titles.
I was always SOUL… the universe- part of the whole- inseparate and infinite- an indescribable fractal of consciousness, capable of compassion and creation… love itself.
What a hilarious joke to think I was anything else. Person-hood… I’m onto you… I see you ever more clearly!
Thanks for the growth, muchos gracias for the knockdowns, arigato for the reminders.
Thanks for helping me understand that to love ferociously and live fearlessly … is the gift we have for the taking in this miracle called life.
WE ARE HERE TO EXPERIENCE SOUL EXPRESSION.
THIS IS FREEDOM.
THIS IS HOW WE FLOW WITH THE UNIVERSE.
Never forget this my Brothers & Sisters.
Much love, Jiro