Friends

We are in this body for a limited time. In an instant, the lights go out, and we travel on beyond this body. We become like the angels.

We believe that things are going to last forever. We attach ourselves to this happiness, or this security, this feeling of safety, doing our best to preserve it because life without it is somehow worse, somehow harder, somehow less complete.

We close our eyes at night, and get our 8 hours, wake to our alarm, and move into the routine that we base our lives upon. Shower, breakfast, commute to work. Maybe we will say goodbye to the people that we may never see again. Maybe we will let go of our safety and security when we leave the house. Maybe we will allow things to become a little less complete for some hours.

Our dreams are controlled by our minds. Our minds are controlled by our environment. You see naked women posted to the wall in front of you as expensive advertising in the service station toilets, and think it normal to pee whilst looking at a naked woman. You see on the news people being dragged out of warzones, maybe alive or maybe not, and because the screen is between us and them it makes it not so real. We just take another heavy breath, and accept it all as being a part and parcel of the world we’re living in. It would be too much effort to question what is going on, as it would rock our stability that we try so hard to maintain in life.

It is complicated to even fathom a reality that is not full of distractions in every possible moment. Can you even remember the last time that you didn’t look at your smartphone for a whole hour? Can you remember the last time you had a whole day without being dragged down by what’s going on around you?

I lay in my tiny tent on the Downs, waking again to the snarling of my friend’s dog, who sleeps under the stars. All through the night, barely half an hour goes by without being awoken. It’s amazing situation to be in:- too tired to move, yet woken from any slumber I fall into with this incredible intensity of a dog that is ready to attack and perhaps fight to the death should anyone or anything come in her path. And still, I fall asleep again and again. Eventually, my dreams become a puja, and Lord Shanmukha is there in the centre of it. I am singing ‘Vel Vel Muruga’….come, come, Lord Muruga. It is a battle cry. Soon, an energy swells until it seems to overwhelm everything around, and it seems to transcend the whole feeling of experience. I am transcended into a bliss-like existence. There is no animosity, no aggression, no fear. There is just bliss, anandoham.

My friend and dog go for a walk after dawn, and I’m still laying there craving a bit more than a few minutes in one cycle of sleep. I fall into sleep with another friend singing and playing harmonium. I dream of being in a marquee that is flooded with water, but still walkable through. There is a massive drum, that is about 2 metres high. I can’t tame it, and so can’t play it. I sit at the musicians area, and Owen is there, looking at me with his big wide eyes and a big smile on his face. He’s really there – this is his actual self in this dream, not just a depiction of him that my subconscious has conjured. And I smile, and am so happy to see him.

I understand that it is still possible to see in this world. It is still possible to have illuminations, to have ecstasies, to be with God, and to be enchanted by the infinite beauty of the heart. At some point the dharma will be completely forgotten. All this knowledge and wisdom that we hold dear, it will not exist anymore. But that is not concerning you or I, is it? It is a civilisation that will come to be at some time. We will be in a different form by then. As is the merging of the universe. For total enlightenment to happen, all beings must be free. All beings must be enlightened before this experience of total enlightenment is to happen. And we have a lot of different beings in this world.

We are here to work together. That saying, ‘we’re all just walking each other home’, is as true as ever. We can get nowhere without helping everyone around us. Every step involves a trillion beings stepping too. We all journey this world together, searching everywhere deep inside for the Light that shines like no other.

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