6/06/2016

Pilgrims to Presence

We who through suffering or grace have learned to drop out of time, to repose in the Kingdom of Presence, may harbor a secret doubt that something is 'wrong' with us. We feel like a different sub-species of humanity, because we just don't process time as well as we process eternity.
For so many lives we've traveled down this linear vector from past to future that we're no longer convinced it takes us anywhere. This is our revolution, our radical action: from now on, we refuse to buy into the hype of linear 'time.'
Looking honestly at the human race, stuck in 'time,' we've noticed how mournfully people are vested in a story out of the past, though the past doesn't actually exist; how anxiously they speed into a story about the future, though it's just the old story repeated ad nauseum. And we've come to realize how, whatever we did in the past that needs forgiveness, forgiveness is always in the now... So we're tempted to drop out of the race as an ultimate act of sanity.
But we wonder if this might be breaking the rules, and those who are caught in the insanity of time might regard us as insane...
At some point though, racing with the human race just becomes so absurd, we have no choice but to give up linearity. We confess that we must ever gracefully circle and fall back into Presence. Maybe its insane, but it feels right. It feels Whole.
It feels like when you were a kid, letting your breath out, sinking to the bottom of the pool, where in deep blue silence you watched swimmers on the surface thrashing by.
We discover that reposing in the present moment isn't the beginning of a new journey, or the end of the old one; it's the beginning-less endless journey to itself, through itself, beyond time, ever birthing, ever complete...
In this repose, many of civilization's old values, handed down through centuries, throttled into school children by grim Sunday school teachers, and later by 'Advanced Placement' courses or SAT prep, just aren't relevant any more. Competition feels ridiculous. No winners to identify with, or to resent. No losers either.
We're finished with a civilization based on winning and losing. When we settle in the valley Presence, which is somehow empty yet abundantly lush, we see in a new way: Those who constantly strive toward 'more' appear quite sad. The contemplative seems to accomplish as much as the activist. The sinner is as close to heaven as the saint. And the PHD has no more actual wisdom than a sweet pea.
A lump of soil is the wealth of nations. A fresh wild mushroom is the feast of kings. If we identify with anybody, it's the broken people, the wounded ones, the minds that have come a little unglued. Because they see everything from the vale of loss that cradles the mountain of wonder.
But there's a catch: the transition is bumpy. And lonely. There's a birth-pang between one way of Being and another. This is where we need to help each another... Because we who are fortunate enough to become fools, and stumble down the misty forest trail into that valley of Presence, may DOUBT OURSELVES. We may waste years in hesitation...
Suspecting that we are crazy, or need Adderall, or maybe - most unforgivable sin of all - we're lazy!, we feel guilty. Other folks knock themselves out trying to 'succeed,' get 'rich,' publish their names in the annals of literature and art. They exhaust themselves just to be remembered for 10 years? 20 years? 40 at the most? Then they dissolve into ashes and smoke... But we go on forever in the present moment, being nothing at all.
So I'm speaking to you who have dropped out of the illusion, who feel culturally estranged because you're no longer striving for the future, who have learned to repose in Presence but secretly believe that something might be 'wrong' with you, and that maybe you ought to feel lonely, when in fact at the core of your being you have caught the wave of eternity, and fallen in love with All-embracing solitude, and are profoundly free...
I would like to tell you what I think, for all its worth, though I am a Nobody too. I think you are the pioneer. You are the Presence of the future. Even when you are by yourself, you are gathered in an interplanetary sat-sang of 24-7 celebration. You are the wellspring of the ocean of Peace that will cover the Earth with waves of beauty.
Namaste!

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