My husband and I had a conversation about “calm” and “agitated” people this morning as he prepared to leave for work.
I was fascinated. (What makes us discern a person as “calm” or “uptight” or “agitated” or “peaceful” or whatever tags we use? Aren’t all of us an easel upon which every emotion is painted?)
“What am I?” I asked.
“You are calm–even when you are angry,” he said definitively.
My heart leaped in utter joy.
“Really,” he said and dismissed the entire fascinating subject.
Earlier in the week, another friend had announced: “You are stillness in motion.”
I had not pondered her statement until this morning on a walk down the road as the birds sang so sweetly their spring mating trills.
The two statements made me so happy my heart wanted to burst.
“WHO is stillness in motion? WHO is calm even when she is angry?”
Ahhh…that inner voice culled during years and years of meditation and inquiry.
What you do is look inside to discover the answer to this question. You peer inside and look for yourself. Look very carefully for this “I” that is declaring that it is such-and-such or so-and-so.
I looked. Nope, as usual, there is no self to be found. The “I” is once again a thought, a story, a label, a judging. Something non-existent in that bright blazing inner Presence which beams from the core of us. Or maybe beams from no center at all, a sunless Sun, a Nothing filled with Everything.
So who is the self that is so tickled pink to be called something which embraces the opposite?
Just a thought.
And yet, and yet…
(Here’s where things started clicking, moving, vibing, jumping–all within calm stillness, of course.)
…Suddenly something realized something. It realized the preciousness of our stories. The preciousness of our thoughts. The preciousness of our nothingness and everythingness. (OK, it’s realized this before many times–but today’s realization brought me to my knees in joy.)
It realized that the stories and thoughts and lives which we are creating are precious beyond belief. (Sorry, the word “precious” is the only description which begs expression.)
It realized that our stories are gifts to God, the divine, the Creator, the Nothing, the Everything.
It realized that the stuckness of our stories, the places where we tangle and cry and rail and label and blame, are simply knots which the energy of life eventually untangles, as a mother combs a child’s wild and tangled hair.
I am not saying this right. Except it suddenly seems that the energy IS always moving toward the untangling, even when we think it’s a mess, a despicable mess, a terrible knot, an awful unbearable unbeatable sinkhole.
In meditation, I wept, large tears, relieved tears, as something within felt honored, acknowledged, accepted. Something which has always felt pushed away when the “Who am I?” stopped the world and dissolved it.
My meditation friend/teacher says there are two paths toward enlightenment. (Yes, she believes in enlightenment.) She says there is the negative path and the positive path.
The negative path dissolves everything, simply everything, until you’re so gone that the Light shines through the eclipse in your heart.
The positive path embraces everything, simply everything, until you’re so present that the Light embraces everything in the fullness of your everything.
We often get in trouble, she once said, when we try to walk both the negative and positive paths simultaneously.
(OK, so she says in her story…but I’m walking both paths simultaneously. I can’t help it, whoever I am.)
Some people rail against folks who want enlightenment, clucking in disapproval. I think there are pitfalls both way. If you chase enlightenment, you often miss the preciousness of this very rising story. If you ignore enlightenment, you’ll often chase the tail of your conditioned responses and patterns, around and around and around and around and around…
So what are we selves who are not selves suppose to do as we long for or reject our enlightenment parables?
What is a new fresh answer that doesn’t involve marshmallows or s’mores? (See last post.) My answer is the pebbles of these crazy words strung in a story embraced by a stillness which peeks through the clouds like a full moon on a rainy spring night.