Category Archives: Thoughts

My Friend

My friend tells me he is dying.

He jokes, “The doctor gives me four weeks if I don’t take the chemo treatment. (pause for effect) Four-and-a-half if I do.”

I am quiet. Even though I have seen his six-year struggle with cancer, I am caught off guard.

“I’m joking,” he says.

I realize how much I love this guy who has been an absent presence in my life for four decades. He came into it, the childhood friend of my late husband, as part of the package. He appeared on our doorstep on his vacations. Then he was gone, off to create special effects for Hollywood. Then back, on hiatus and living out of his van in my driveway. A familiar, quirky pal to me right from the beginning. Well, we like to call it quirky. Others sometimes see him as a bit eccentric, sarcastic, prickly, passionate and opinionated. An artist. He is all of that and we loved him quietly through the years, watching him meet up with women, briefly, then move on, ending up back in our driveway again.

He built a complicated speaker system with my husband, the two of them working well into the wee hours, creating the perfect parade speakers for our Cajun/Zydeco band. He came to performances and sat with our group. Sometimes. He disappeared for months to work on a movie, then back again in between and blending in with our twosome of a family life. He regaled friends and families (and still does) with stories, like the one about puppeteering the backend of Mighty Joe Young, a movie gorilla. — ”Someone has to be the butt, and it’s not as easy as you’d think!”

Three friendsNow, so many years later, I revisit those days, stepping back into that time. I smile. Those were good times, when I would go to bed listening to him and my husband laughing and bantering over the intricacies of PC vs MAC, of how to Photoshop a jpeg, the drone of the discussion humming well into the night.

Did I enjoy those moments enough? Did they?

I wonder.

To live in the moment, to fully embrace the joy in every speck of time – did I? Do I now? Do I reach that underlying joy that is the universe at play? Did he? Did they? – taste, feel, see, hear and touch it?

Did I? Did they?

When my husband died, I thought I would die, too. After almost five days when food turned to dust in my mouth and I found it impossible to eat, our friend appeared to take me out for a smoothie, to help me taste the world again. It tasted like a banana milk shake on a warm summer day with the smell of an ocean breeze and a vision of white clouds against a blue sky, seagulls squawking in the air.

I’m just joking,” he says. “It’s not four-and-a-half weeks.”

But the doctor advised him to get his final documents in order, to sign the DNR. And my friend did.

And, still, I thought I would have another chance to talk with him.

Know Ye Science

Today seriously aspiring seekers and philosphers must first become conversant in science, for the revelations of science are too profound to ignore.

~~ Frank A. Wilczek, PhD and Deepak Chopra

 

Sometimes a Bad Day is a Good Thing

Reconnecting with Oneness, and Francis Lucille

I was having a bad day.

Houseguests made our morning coffee, creating a weak, half-decaf concoction without telling me, a woman who enjoys a strong cuppa in the a.m. We’d gotten up and dressed by 7:30 to go to breakfast, at their suggestion; then, they said, “Oh, we changed our minds. We’re leaving at 8:30.” An hour’s sleep lost. A friend sent me a photo of me, which she loved, in which I looked ancient, wrinkly and sweaty. The ego took a blow. It was hot and we have no air-conditioning. Stifling. My computer tablet refused to start; my mini-blinds would not lower to shield out the hot sun; in my irritated state, my meditation crawled from shallow to shallower, my mind jumping from one irritation to the next.  The neighbor started up a drilling/pounding house project.

I kept it in perspective – none of this was earth-shattering. “Get over it,” I said to me. But I was off center. I slipped further and further, as the irritations built. I sneezed, itchy eyes of allergies settling in; I gave up on yoga stretches and slipped further. I was at the door of a funk. In fact, I opened the door and was ready to take a step.

In a moment of synchronicity, I flipped on my Google + and  a new video popped up on my one working computer. It was from Francis Lucille’s satsang, and he was answering an online question from someone named Luke, who did not like who he was.  “That is my question,” I said. “I feel this way today, too.  I’m not liking who I am in this world.”

In Francis’ answer to Luke, he said that the one you believe yourself to be is not who you really are. That’s good, I thought, because I don’t want to be this irritable individual with hurt feelings. I sat down to listen and watch. Francis explained:

The one you really are is extraordinary awareness which is hearing these words right now. Nothing else. Stop linking this awareness to this body-mind called Luke [or Judy!]. Be open to the possibility that this awareness is independent from the body-mind that you call Luke. And that the awareness is the real Luke.…

Francis continued to explain that awareness is not a hostage to the body-mind. Or dependent on it.  And further, its freedom, power, peace and happiness derives from this independence.

“That which you want to change is not the real you,” he said.

I paused to listen again: “That which you want to change is not the real you.” But where is this awareness, this consciousness, then, when I want it and when I have slipped into an ego-driven funk? Where was it when I wanted to blame other people for weak coffee, switches in plans, crappy photos and a faulty mini-blind?

Hiding, I decided. Waiting for me to remember. Waiting for me to feel its presence. Waiting for me to get over this everyday body-mind junk focus. Yes, waiting patiently for me to remember. I finally did, thanks to a generous answer to Luke’s question from Francis Lucille.

I remembered and I moved on – not perfectly, but with a leap of intention. My heart eased and my soul let go. And that should be the end of the story. But, I admit to you that, even with all that resolve, I still do live within the powerful magnet of this body-mind.

I deleted the unflattering photo from my email, flipped on a fan, made a fresh batch of hefty coffee and covered my window with a curtain.

Oh, and I slathered on a facial mud masque, just for good measure.

The journey continues.

Standing in a State of Consciousness

Imagine you are standing on the top floor of a skyscraper.

But there are no walls around you.

And there are no floors below you.

No ceiling above.

You are standing on steel girders.

Now imagine you are still standing there on the top floor of this skyscraper.

But there are no girders.

Non-duality?

Micro Infinity – Infinitely Tiny

We think we’ll find the tiniest essence of the universe.

But we are wrong.

The tiniest “thing” is not a string. Or a photon or a bit of energy.

The tiniest thing ever is infinity.

Infinite.

Infinity in a Sunflower

Photo by Depositphotos.com, Lizard

Over the centuries, we’ve all grown used to the idea of infinity at the macro level. It’s big. Big. BIG. HUGE. It’s bigger than we can ever imagine. It goes on forever in time and space. Rocketships can never reach the end of the universe. It’s infinite. It goes beyond the stars, and then farther, forever. It’s infinite. Bigger than Big. We’ve heard this for so long in all of our philosophies, our religions, our sciences, that we think we understand it. We ‘get’ it.

Of course, we don’t. Not really. It’s impossible to genuinely, truly grasp infinity from our human perspective — well, for most of us. I ask myself, just checking: who really, at a gut level, grasps infinity? The Buddha, maybe? Other rare metaphysical leaders?

I don’t grasp it. Neither does my sister or brother or lover or friends or — anyone I know. We just know it’s there. The infinite. The one. The non-duality. We believe it despite the fact that all physical life as we know it comes and goes, lives and dies. Inside an infinite universe.*

Infinity. It’s BIG.

Just as the universe is infinite in macro, infinite in time and space and any other dimensions we can conceive of, so also is it infinite in micro.

Infinity. It’s TINY.

Infinitely tiny in time and space and whatever other dimensions we may discover.
Our universe goes in all directions: forward, backward, sideways, up, down, in, out — big and small.

This occurred to me as I was contemplating the world as we know it, and though I have not yet seen micro infinity discussed by scientists, you can be sure I’ll be googling for that this week. I can’t wait to see what the mathematicians, physicists, metaphysicists and philosophers tell me about this. I promise to share.

What a journey this is — like exploring the net of a trampoline, bouncing, bounding, flying, falling into the net, and peering into the elastic threads that hold all of this together.

* “Universe” no longer describes the “all” as we know it, not with multiverses being discussed, alternate dimensions, and more to be discovered. So, I use “universe” to mean simply, the “all” as we know it, for now.