A few days ago some intense pain came to teach me a thing or two. In the midst of it, I experienced a re-membering of a space that is free from thoughts and stories and separation...
Years ago when I read Tolle’s Power of Now, one concept was confusing. It was the one thing in the book that I didn’t or couldn’t grasp from the space I was in at that moment. In fact, it kept coming up for me from time to time and continued to elude. The elusive concept is that pain does not exist in the present moment. I’ve had moments of pure presence and it’s true that I did not have pain. However, I didn’t have pain before or after them either.
In the midst of recent physical pain I was experiencing last weekend, I went into... or more correctly, expanded into presence. As you know, we can all strive to be “present-ish” in our lives and most of us do. However those moments of pure presence are fleeting because any thought shifts them. In my space of presence on Saturday, there was no pain and as soon as I had a thought come in, I began to shift from that experience but there was a point in between where I had one foot in presence and one in a thought. In that glimmer of space, the pain returned or at least, the sensation of it. However, with no context of past or future, I didn’t know if it was good or bad. It was not unpleasant or uncomfortable. I could not have told you if it was pain or pleasure. In this same glimmer of space, I saw a glass of orange juice in front of me and did not know what it was called or could be used for. Now this whole experience may have only lasted a split second if it was measurable, but the gifts continue.
The first gift was confirmation for me that pain must have a thought attached to be felt as pain. The second gift didn’t settle in until the next day. I realized that in the moment I did not know what the glass was called, I was as bliss-filled as a child who saw bubbles on the wind for the first time. “Not-knowing” is my true home. It is only the ego that has a problem with it. Our egos must know how next month’s bills will be paid, if that mole is cancerous, if we will lose our job in the next layoff, if our partner will leave us next week, if we will die before our kids are grown, if we will evolve spiritually to a point where we blow its cover. All the times in my life when I stressed over what might happen next, I was allowing the stories created by ego to take the wheel.
Many clients and friends (myself included) over the past year have been in some dark places, concerned about their next step, anxious that they may not even have the energy to take a step. I know from experience in dark places that it’s hard to convey that the darkness is ego under threat, ego that is afraid of its own demise. At our essence, underneath all the false beliefs, we are liberated from thoughts and labels and separation. We fear nothing. We shine brightly. Everything is brand new like bubbles with no name carried on the wind.
All my Love, Raven