One night as I waited for sleep to overtake me, an unexpected and fierce blaze of fear rushed through my body.
I chose to remain perfectly still and open to it. Wider, wider, ever wider.
I saw how terrified I was of being alone.
The mind was running like a train out of control
headed for hell.
Instead of picking up a book or beginning a chant,
Something in me wanted to stop. Was ready to stop.
Stop the countless efforts to avoid and postpone turning toward this fear.
So, I gave my attention to the mind in complete acceptance and said,
“It’s fine. Let yourself run as fast and hard as you can.
Roam as far and wide as you need.
But in your travels, take with you this one question, “Who am I?
And, when you return, let me know what you find.”
Then, I let myself fully experience what seemed like
endless feelings of loneliness.
Just as unexpectedly as the fear had arisen,
a Pure joy like nothing I had ever experienced before
began to shine its light throughout every ounce and particle
of disbelief that I could ever be free.
I found myself opening into the Joy.
And then something new happened, something incomprehensible.
The inevitable came to pass.
After a while, a thought appeared
and I recognized my old and tattered friend,
“Ahhh you have returned. What did you find?”
I was stunned as I watched my mind bow its head low with respect for me,
respect for its search to find the answer.
The mind spoke with tender reverence …
“I visited countless temples, mosques, and sacred places of every kind …
some built on holy ground, some nothing more than a mud hut.
I sat with great beings of many esteemed traditions,
spent thousands of hours meditating and chanting,
reading and studying sacred scriptures ancient and new,
and basking in the poetry of lovers of God.
I pierced the mysteries of numerous religions
while gathering beliefs and concepts that soothed me
when I was weary and afraid.”
Then, together we reviewed the life we had lived,
turning over one by one the stones of everything I believed to be true and the concepts I had held so dear.
Then, in humble repose, the mind continued.
“In all my travels, the One I found
over and over again …
You were always there … always with me. How obvious! So simple!
My glimpses of Truth were glimpses of You.
So, I have come to offer you my answer. Who Am I? …
I am You.”
Then, I and the mind, spiraling in flames of pure Love became One,
Love’s fire leaving nothing to cling to.
Then, this “I”
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by Anasuya Floan