Undo all the ideas in the head, or at least see them for what they are: mind-made, and so maybe not the same thing as reality. Rock your world. Witness what happens when you stop living in your head, in the tiny airless house where nothing at all exists except your ideas of things. Inside there, life itself is invisible, at a great distance.
The hunger you’ve felt forever is deeply not for life to be a certain way but to stop being at a distance from life itself. How foolish a way to spend the precious coin of existence, to miss the very thing we most want.
Learn to question every assumption about what’s real or true, to see what you’ve overlaid on real experience, like rough impenetrable bark encasing something shimmering and boundless. Allow the moment to flood you. Dig a hole and bury the cherished ideas you’ve carried around forever like bricks. Something sublime awaits your setting them down. It’s breathtakingly simple, in the end. Watch the bricks tumble into the deep hole you’ve dug, tuck them in, pat them down, and walk away into a liquid, unburdened existence, where you do not even exist, at least, not in the laboring way you’re used to.
Allow yourself to dwell in the truth of what you are: something shimmering and boundless.
Finally you are deeply satisfied, and for no reason at all. It’s just that you’ve emerged from the darkness of the tomb you’ve inhabited until now, into the shining ordinary moment-to-moment. Who could have imagined life could be this way, after all the torment, all the longing to find something that would bring you joy?
Come at last to know what is real. Allow yourself to dwell in the truth of what you are: something shimmering and boundless, untethered from dissatisfaction and fear.
* * * * *
In the presence of what turns out to be real, a person could be tempted to take refuge forever in blessed emptiness, to dissolve into motionless silence, remote from ordinary life. Yet even as you’ve come to know that “you” are much more than your history, more than the tangible physical reality you live within, the particulars of embodied existence are found to be more delicious when you’ve stop identifying with it all, deriving meaning from each thing.
Who would ever want to do without the bodied experience of cherished people and animals, beloved places and activity? That first exhilarating sip of biting-cold dark beer on a hot summer night. A cold morning’s first swallow of hot coffee. How soon it will all unwind: a dear face, a tune, the motion of wind, a scoop of earth lifted to the nose.
Brevity makes every single thing a matter of urgent savoring. Pay attention. Be in the body, while that’s possible.
How could I — how could you — ever want to grow remote from this sensory, in-motion existence, holding apart from it all, the body at rest, the senses grown quiet? Even if it were possible to linger in the ecstatic, formless experience of all-pervasive divinity, at a distance from the ongoing reminders of mortality, would you really want that? What if loss and grief were part of what it is to be human, among the endless expressions of love?
* * * * *
The miracle is that we get to have it all, to know viscerally that a human being is both empty spaciousness and every precious thing we see or do. There is no contradiction. You are spaciousness and you are a marveling creature, both timeless and mortal. Isn’t this what Jesus meant? Lucky, lucky us: mortal and divine in a single gesture, fleeting and unbounded, the one not negating the other.
Talk about fortunate! Able to be embodied spaciousness, and endowed with an intelligence to know it. To sense the living reality of emptiness and fullness in each precious moment, while attached to none of it. Self-awareness that never was meant to become twisted in self-loathing and guilt and fear, but only to savor, to rejoice. To feel the irresistible sinking to the knees to say thank you, and thank you, and thank you.