Annihilation and Kisses

Many years ago, I shared a kiss with a man who is one of my soul mates in this life.  A force opened up which moved through us connecting Heaven and Earth.  It poured down from Heaven through his body and rose up from the Earth through mine, sealing us together with electromagnetism so powerful that we both heard the roar of the Nada Brahma, the original, “unstruck sound” upon which Creation rests.

Due to the circumstances of our lives, there was no place to take this, so we let it go.  I wrote poetry.  He took comfort from my writings, and eventually, the balm of time did its magic work of helping the experience to fade from memory…  until a few weeks ago when once again my breath and the breath of a soul mate entwined, and now all those memories are crashing back.

kiss.001

 

 I find myself asking if Free Will exists.

And I find myself yearning, not for the human being who held me, but for the Infinite force which embraced me through him.  I find myself wondering if it is not the flesh and blood man whom I love, but rather the transcendent power of Love itself.

For the human being who is the vessel for the Beloved this time is often clueless or in denial.  He runs about trying to label the experience.  He says he has never before felt ‘not in control of [his] own body’.  It terrifies him.   He feels almost usurped by forces he cannot explain.   He claims Love is utmost in his life and that he has been in Love more than once, but in truth, he has never before experienced what it is to have Love reside within him so completely that his ideas of who he is are first dwarfed and then annihilated.  So he runs away.  He stands me up, leaving me alone yearning in the dark.  If I am upset, instead of hearing me with a compassionate heart, he becomes defensive, thinking, “What is so wrong with me?”  so he loses his temper and barks like a mindless dog, saying things to hurt me, saying he loves other people more than me.  And on a good day, he simply makes a million excuses to prove he will test my patience, cause harm,  and persistently be unworthy.

And I have seen all this before, so what can I possibly say?  Big Love is terrifying.  It shows us all our darkness, all our pettiness, all our inadequacy, every growing edge we have.  We glorify Love, idealize it, romanticize it, but really most of us prefer the vague empty isolation of safety to the formless void of annihilation and the utter powerlessness of real surrender. To love requires tremendous courage and if one genuinely persists in the practice of loving, one will unfold into fearlessness.  This is the Path to Liberation.  It is.

Most human beings are quite willing to settle for an imitation.

So if I see all this, how can it be that I love this man with all his shortcomings, fears, ego control strategies and pockets of immaturity who runs from what I know is the only Real Reality? I cannot possibly love him, eh?  Why would I?  And yet I do.   With all my heart and soul.   And when he runs away or hides, every edge I have still to polish, every rough, unfinished place inside my soul is brought to light and I, too, am childish, immature, fearful, struggling for control.  I, too, am far less than worthy.

But when we touch,  we melt.  We disappear…  We vanish. And in these incredible moments of magic, gazing back at me through the eyes of this human being are thousands of lifetimes, eons, of recognition… Infinite Love… Eternity.

The why and how of who Love chooses is an eternal mystery.  If it were solved, that solution would most probably deprive life of much of it’s magic.  For, certainly, we Love beyond reason, and that is exactly what stretches us in ways we would never consider stretching if Love were not burning us with its fire, torturing us with its yearning and seducing us with its warm, deep ecstasies.   That is what Love does to us– it drives us toward Life.

We like to believe we choose Love, but that is all the greatest hubris.   Love chooses us.  And ultimately, Love does not choose to make us comfortable, it chooses to destroy our limitations and liberate us from the prisons of the mind, to do whatever it takes to awaken us to its own ineluctable Reality.

Fierce and Tender Love,
Murshida VA

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Credits: Image

The Main Course

you think i want you for my lover?

that would be nice, don’t get me wrong, that would be… nice.

but really i would only be softening you up
for the main course
i would only be marinating you to be served at God’s table.

you see, i want your freedom
more than anything
more than your hands on my body
more than your breath inside me
more than your warm, deep kisses

you thought you could come to Kali’s house
and play with fire
without getting burned up
on the cremation grounds?

what were you thinking?

the Mother is dancing, naked, laughing,
bathed in ashes, grieving your death
while you are still here breathing.

She is celebrating your death,
while you are still clinging desperately
to all your ideas of who you are.

and you still think I want you for my lover.

Stupid! I want to mesmerize you with bliss
until you drop your guard for just a moment
until you slip for just a moment
into surrender

into surrender
for just a moment

and then I’ll pour what’s left of you
into God’s mouth
like the finest red wine
to wash down the meal

and you and God will be so happy then
like two lovers after hours and hours of love
punctuated by a perfect feast
prepared by the Chefs of Heaven
with warm tummys

resting entwined
engulfed devoured
happily exhausted

breathing together
like the waves
of the ocean

yes, you and God will be so happy then
that it will not matter what I did to get you there
you’ll forgive me,

laughing and crying all at once
for how I tricked you

you’ll forgive me for tricking you
into believing
i was just a woman who wanted you
for my lover

and you’ll know it’s true then–
i could never only want that
i could never only want that

because once you see
once you know
once you feel the bliss of God

you’ll know, that really,
all this human lovemaking is just…
well… it’s just for practice.

–Murshida VA


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Notes:

It is partly correct to say Kali is a goddess of death but She brings the death of the ego as the illusory self-centered view of reality…  Of all the forms of Devi, She is the most compassionate because She provides liberation to Her children. She is the counterpart of Shiva the destroyer. They are the destroyers of unreality. The ego sees Mother Kali and trembles with fear because the ego sees in Her its own eventual demise. A person who is attached to his or her ego will not be receptive to Mother Kali and she will appear in a fearsome form. A mature soul who engages in spiritual practice to remove the illusion of the ego sees Mother Kali as very sweet, affectionate, and overflowing with incomprehensible love for Her children.   –from: http://www.goddess.ws/kali.html

On Beauty and the Onset of Pain

Yesterday, I had an opportunity to speak with the lovely young woman with the awakened heart who is the subject of my recent blogs, https://murshidava.wordpress.com/2010/03/12/earth-offerings/ and https://murshidava.wordpress.com/2010/03/12/god-in-the-heart/


She spoke with me about her experience reading Earth Offerings.  She told me that when she first read the blog, it was so poetic, that she immediately and rather automatically recoiled into an unexpected cynicism, denying, for a moment, the validity and depth of her own experience.

Recovering from this state, she realized how human her response was and spent the night pondering this phenomena which she called, “a deeply cynical denial and invalidation of what is most beautiful to us.”

What emerged from our dialogue was an awareness of the difficulty we human beings have loving ourselves and how that stops us from loving life, and one another, completely.  If we think and believe, “Oh, I could not possibly be that beautiful, my life could not possibly be that beautiful, the mind will create a trap to stop the flow of beauty through the heart.

I asked her why she thought people do this.  Her answer: “I think people reject what is most beautiful to them because they are afraid of the pain of losing it… because it will hurt more to lose this, it will hurt more to lose so much beauty.”

So, yes, much truth here.  Impermanence is inescapable.

Truly masterful non-attachment is the ability to feel everything, completely, to be completely alive, and to allow all that which moves through us to just keep on moving through us.  It is to neither cling nor reject while at the same time feeling everything.

The Path we are walking is through experience, through life and the body, with awareness.  To stand in ourselves fully and burn from the inside out with passionate love or ache with grief or shimmer or tremble as fear travels by, to feel the spirit gradually lift and lighten as guilt is removed from the crevasses of the heart, all of this is… life.

When we fear feeling, we begin to construct limitations with our minds that inhibit the full spectrum of our experience and we get ‘stuck’ in clogged corners of ourselves, while the rest of  us is left screaming, “Hey, wait, I’m in here, see me, feel me– wait!!!”

But the Voices of Reason, guarding the door, just calmly shush us, rationalizing our outcries.

The Cynic waves her hand and says, “None of this is even real,” relegating huge parts of the soul to the realms of Shadow where the pressure continues to build and build, toward inevitable breakdown or explosion.

Often, in this condition, we begin to feel persistently trapped as if we must escape from our lives to save our own lives, and so we run from one commitment to another, or one place to another, but in escaping we only bring the clogged stuck mess inside us along wherever we go, wondering why nothing ever really seems to change.

My beautiful young friend caught herself in the stuck place and wiggled free.  Now she is feeling all of life, including the trajedy of our own humanity resisting it.

On Compassionate Truth and the Dissolution of Friendships

Last night I wrote a very difficult letter to a friend.  I love this friend.  Really with my entire being, but there are times when we see something in someone’s actions and we just have to call it out.  This, for me, was one of those times.  I found myself like a wolf baying at the moon, calling for all the truth to come out of the shadows, to light the darkness of the soul.  And how this light penetrated my friend, I may never know– his response was to remove me from his facebook friends and cut all communication.

It was not a cruel or angry letter.  It was just honest, clear, penetrating, and ruthlessly compassionate, but these energies are not always something people are willing to take in.

And so, my friend may have shut me out permanently.  And, the thing is, no matter how much the head says, “Well, that is just how it has to be”  the heart still grieves.  And my heart is grieving.

When I was younger perhaps I would have grieved for days over this, but now it just isn’t possible for me to feel that kind of despair.  I have seen too much of life to feel utterly devastated by the loss of even the most beautiful and promising love or friendship.   Somehow, along the way, my bones got the message that nothing which is truly mine in this world can ever be taken from me.  And I certainly have known for many years that, “There are some truths far better than belonging.”

If I compromise the integrity of my Self to keep a friend, both the friend and I will have less than nothing.

One of my students said today that the thing about our community is that all your shit can come up, it can go right out on the table and you will be loved even more for that as long “…as you’re willing to work with it.  We don’t care what the shit is,” he said.  “We love you more for being human.”

Growth happens at these times.  Real growth.  Real change.  Real transformation.  It also requires real courage and cultivates fearlessness to go to and through these places.  It’s not for everybody.

“We are deep divers here,” he said.  “If that’s not for you, go to the kiddie pool.”

He has a way with words.

And he is very loyal.

Deep diving is not for everyone.  It does not make a person immature or less if they prefer not to dive.  We are all made differently.  Some of us are better swimmers than others. Some of us have better lung capacity and so do not fear the deep water.  For those who look on the expanse of the ocean and all they see is the terror of drowning, God has made the shallows, hot springs, cold springs, rivers, waterfalls… there are many beautiful choices.

Deep diving is only one.   And, yes, all rivers do eventually lead to the ocean, but one doesn’t have to begin on the back of a blue whale in the middle of the Pacific.

Many people still live lives where the deepest secrets they keep about themselves are from themselves and if anything shines a light into that darkness it is profoundly threatening.  Often, we will kill (some parts of ourselves, the spirit of others, or even literally kill) to protect our ‘horrible secrets’ when the most life-giving thing that could happen to us is that the secrets be dragged out of the Shadow and into the light of conscious awareness in a safe space.

When we actually have the courage to see what is underneath the ‘horrible’ things we have done or are doing, or sometimes even just thinking and feeling, then we begin to make progress in Self-Love.   Almost invariably, what is beneath these choices is some real need begging to be fulfilled.  In recognizing and honoring the need underneath the darkness, we can begin to find beautiful and powerful ways to fulfill ourselves, truly.

Carl Jung said that the Shadow, our disowned and often denied, repressed and even consciously suppressed parts of ourselves, contained some of our finest qualities.  The key to transforming the Shadow world lies in having the courage to face who and what we are, as individuals and as a humanity.

As Jesus of Nazareth said, “When we bring forth what is within us, what we bring forth will save us.  When we deny what is within us, what we deny will destroy us.”

Truth has an immutable, an unchanging quality.  It endures when all else passes away.  Perhaps this is why I prefer relationships built on this foundation– I find they persevere gracefully even in the face of Life’s most challenging passages.   So for those of us who prefer the shallows, the springs, hot and cold, the waterfalls, our time will come eventually, those waters will eventually flow into the ocean.

And in the meantime, I am working through my grief.  And it may take a while, but it is better to know now, rather than later, at a crucial time of tension or stress, who and what will have the strength to persevere.

in Loving Kindness,

Murshida VA


Notes:

Lama Tsultrim Allione has a truly magnificent CD, entitled, “Cutting through Fear” which walks the seeker directly through the process of facing and transforming these dark or hidden inner forces.  Ultimately this process becomes a way of life and is deepest when practiced within the container of a conscious community (Holy Company).  However, for anyone who is curious and wants to experiment on their own, dip in a toe or a finger, Allione’s CD a great place to start.   “Cutting Through Fear” is available through Amazon.