Greetings from the Land of Enchantment: Rain

Thursday, October 09, 2008


Maybe it's the rain and the sky here with the clouds heavy but light still surrounding them, in pink and blue relief; maybe it's the constant singing of gurbani; maybe it's just gurprasad (god's grace); maybe it's pure exhaustion; but the experience of being flooded by light and love--the nectar--is overwhelming me.

We complete the Guru Ram Das celebrations this evening with more kirtan and more food. The past couple of days have brought powerful visualizations to me during the meditations--almost as if I were seeing a movie in my head. They begin as prayers but then become something separate from me, from my intention. They form spontaneously, autonomously--and then I just continue to meditate on the image.

It feels as though I am being shown the possibilities of living consciously. That it is real; it's attainable.

I was telling a friend of the God-shaped hole. We spoke of all our attempts to fill the hole with love, with discipline, with drugs, anything really, but that's the point, yes? It's God-shaped. Nothing can fill it but God. But if we're lucky, we get to circle the abyss again and again and again and as we come closer to the edge--and peer fearlessly into the cold chasm--surprise, we see only our Self. And, hopefully, by the time we reach that edge, the face looking back at us has a wry grin, or at least a compassionate smile.

The fear of looking is soooo real. When I was younger, I recall writing a letter that described my emotional state as sitting on a boil, a cauldron, a boiling, stuttering, sputtering stew. I wanted to write it down so that I would remember it someday. Recently, someone described their mental state as sitting on the top of an active volcano--and I remembered my letter to myself, years ago. Last night's meditation transformed this particular image for me and showed me the creativity that lies within the passion of the volcano, the boiling stew. As I meditated with Dhan Dhan Ram Das Gur, I visualized my friend sitting atop the live volcano and I began to pray that the nectar of God's Name, God's Mercy, and God's Grace, rain down, pour over him. This was just a simple prayer for grace, for mercy, for being covered.

Rain poured and poured and poured until the volcano cooled enough to form land, a nectar tank formed in the crater, and the land blossomed and bloomed with every green thing--like a Maurice Sendak illustration--meanwhile the yogi simply meditated.

I realized that my own transformation from the boiling cauldron to the calm lake (okay so I'm pushing the metaphor for those of you who know me) had come with years of mistakes and suffering; but more often than not, from simple and pure-hearted surrender. Surrender to what was beyond the fear. Surrender to my highest identity. Surrender--even when you don't have the courage to look. Just jumping and trusting Infinity to carry you.

The boiling cauldron doesn't go away; the volcano remains awake; but with enough grace (and enough cool rain) like everything it evolves, it transmutes, and becomes the fire of creativity, the passion of just causes, the heat that purifies the mind, and the flame of Love for the Divine.

May you burn
burn so brightly
that your presence
lights the darkest
corners of the mind

May you burn
burn with a flame
of truth that allows
nothing small
nothing hidden

May you burn
with a love
for the Self
so strong, it requires
nothing else

May you burn
so true
that you


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