From Groundhog Days – Intercourse on Time
By Melina Costello & David Arthur Walters
Saturday, May 29, 2004
My Dear Groundhog,
Thank you so much for your very astute missive. It is I, not you, who should apologize for gross tardiness in writing, and so please accept all and sundry stupid excuses (for they are) for neglecting our correspondence. I could tell you, and it would be true (however stupid), that I am absolutely up to my eyeballs in end-of-the-year school work without a moment to relax, read, meditate, carry on any sort of meaningful conversation with another human being, and, equally important, space out. It is only when I space out that I am truly myself.
I’m becoming convinced that being the upright responsible person I strive daily to be (so as to keep my job and continue eating) is the Hell we otherwise ascribe to an after death state of blindness and torment. I ran across an interesting piece on Manu not too long ago, which stated that his followers thought the latter was true as well. I’m not certain how they rationalized a way out of hell, though, but they did hold to an interesting concept that the God of the Bible was (or is), in fact, a false god–Satan parading as God, and that we have been royally duped down to our very core beliefs. Come to think of it, there was a way, however arduous, to discover the “true God” and thereby be given an opportunity to doff this vale of tears and be redeemed, but for the life of me I can’t remember what it is. Ring any bells? All of the above (including Ouspensky’s mythology) is very hideous indeed and this morning I had to remind myself that love is the only thing that matters.
Once, when I was putting a pencil back into its cup in the classroom while the children were coming to circle (March 2000), I had a spontaneous in-the-body experience, which was perhaps the most incorporeal moment in time I have ever known. I say “moment” because all time seemed to slow to a crawl and at once I saw the entire classroom and every student in it as peripheral noise and activity in a fog of unreality–this is to say that the entirety of the temporal world inside the four walls of the classroom faded as if it were a mere projection on a very distant screen. Everything became utterly silent as though a volume dial had been turned all the way down. Imagine that, if you can, in a kindergarten classroom! At the same time, I experienced what seemed to be a tremendous upsurge of heretofore unknown life from my solar plexus, almost as though an inner seal had been broken and a vault had suddenly flown open. My breathing changed radically and I honestly felt that I was going to go into a trance on the spot, which brought on a fleeting wave of anxiety—what about the children? But the experience was so strong that I could do nothing but succumb. Instantly I found myself reconnecting (if not actually going back in time) to a way of being/seeing in my very early life as a child when I lived out in the country and roamed acres of my family’s property filled with the wild things of nature–a time when I was “empty.” While I was still holding the pencil in midair, this early state of emptiness, which I still possessed in some remote part of my being, became inexplicably infused with an interior knowledge I did not know I had. Perhaps better said, the experience itself WAS the knowledge–a direct hit, no dots to connect. The emptiness and the knowledge completed each other as though they were never separate at all, yielding an amazingly intricate weave of apparent opposites, contradictions, and paradoxes, comprising an utterly simple “Whole” of unimaginable harmony and intention. The latter was entirely governed by an omniscient, immutable awareness, the existence of which seemed to inhale-exhale all life into continual being.
Now, four years later, I could not repeat to you what this knowledge was (is); it will take the rest of my life and then some to comprehend its staggering layers. And yet, in that “moment of the pencil,” I became one with it–or it became one with me. I can only tell you that it is a type of extremely heightened “remembering,”–coming back to oneself–which we know very little of, but which holds the key to our core truth and opens the lock on all that is. In that moment I thought, or knew, this was “the Way, the Truth and the Life”–no Jesus, no Buddha–only an upsurge of Force/Light that is wed to eternity.
Only a matter of seconds had passed because I found that I had placed the pencil in its cup and had turned to face the children, who were gathered on the carpet waiting for me. The intensity of the experience was receding, my normal breathing was returning, and everyday reality began to take on its usual vibrant hues and three-dimensionality. I continued the rest of class as usual, but a half hour later at dismissal, standing outside in the parking lot as I helped the children to their parent’s cars, I noticed the inner experience hadn’t entirely abated and I was permitted to continue to “remember”! I was so full of joy that my habitual blindness had been taken from me and so many, many “fragments” (and I do believe we experience life and ourselves in a fragmented, if not fractured, way) coalesced in a dynamic dance of indescribable unity, orchestrated by an intelligent (knowing) force of LOVE.
I thought about that experience this morning as I hurriedly threw myself together for school. I wondered if we might be given a glimpse like this at death, a chance to have our brokenness mended before our consciousness morphs into something else, or is taken over by the fever of yet another existence.
I await the continued unraveling of the Groundhog mystery, absolutely, and wish you well.