Meeting of the Spirits

through a world without horizon
steering the heavy car across small country roads and icy curves

towards another week delving into the depths of our souls
learning another chapter of the consciousness operating manual


 
then seeing dear old friends again, some of them after a year
too many hugs to give and take
feeling held and loved by a field of 120 people
so many unique lives … deaths, births
a talk and a quiet evening together


 
in the smaller group, a sense of:
we all have got our feet wet in this by now
a different sense of connectedness

“beyond the deepest abyss of fear, there is a peaceful dark pond”

the little pond behind my house in a clear night:
stars in the black water


 
spaciousness without self, without thoughts, without history, without purpose, without time, without meaning and yet, from there, the old self seems like a bad dream

“clear emptiness taking care of the entity,
black emptiness taking care of identity”

selfless spaciousness, a doorway –

a dialogue, a feedback loop of looking together at this deeper and deeper


 
looking at a favorite mechanism:
feeling lost when seemingly stuck in the old self
the habitual unconscious rejection of this feeling
makes “stuck” even more unmovable

after this,
through a large snow covered garden
darkness approaching
stopping now and then and looking inside: complete peace,
truly passing all understanding
a flock of crows circling the old church spires


 
feeling painfully insecure during a gestalt exercise
meeting an old place in me again that I prefer not to go to
feeling insecure, deficient, and small like a child among grownups
feeling abandoned

later: feeling not abandoned but loved and seen and mirrored
aliveness and beauty


 
a tiny reflection in the dark center of an eye
a star shining in black emptiness

the false and hollow personality shell
actually feels stable and self confident at times
a prison


 
a long exhausting walk alone in a snow landscape full of nothing
darker clouds over grey snow fields
walking uphill over uneven harsh snow


 
an unexpected sudden surge of unusual clarity and transparency
lucidity like in a lucid dream, but awake:
opening eyes – the world is there

there is an amazing crystal clear nothingness now inside, for hours
the slightest trace of wanting takes me out of it
the slightest trace of wanting it keeps it away
the slightest trace of wanting is suffering
but each thought and each wish can easily be seen at once in that emptiness, and be dropped

an hour in the bar with old friends with lots of laughter


 
during one exercise, a sudden clearly felt recognition of the falseness of this personality, the pathetic little ego identity with its fears, the faked self-confidence to cover up the fears.
it is even using essential experiences, after they have passed of course, as colorful new bricks in the brittle petty little ego structure wall.
telling friends about these experiences, making the little ego feel more special – maybe a little admired even? how pathetic, how sad to unconsciously feel compelled to do that.
writing about them in this blog – isn’t this also just for making the false self feel more special? just to get some narcissistic supplies?

but then telling the group about this clear recognition, these truths, led to a very strong authentic and present feeling
please don’t take me seriously – it is all just fake!
fakeness and falseness are the foundation of this person, but there is obviously something other underneath that is neither fake nor false nor brittle.
this something underneath doesn’t come from personality, thinking, history, and it cannot be influenced or misused.
they all come to tell me that they see what is underneath – apparently better than I see it myself

how strange to think that there is something there that is really true, independent of opinions!
“objective truth” –
philosophers cringe but they don’t know silence

standing by the snowy creek, she describes how she hears it with her whole body and how the water sounds are inside her.
this hasn’t happened to me yet although I think of myself as focused on hearing rather than seeing.
amazing what a wide range of experiences is possible and in how many ways perception gets deeper and more subtle
once one has begun giving up the personal identity and gets rooted in presence instead.

amazing how intense the feeling of freedom can get. what an incredible relief to be without oneself, even if just for a minute!


 
a warm happiness and feeling touched after successfully helping a friend who was in a dark fearful place for weeks to find trust and joy again

a bright blue sunny sky, what an unexpected gift
walking across the snow field,
there is a man (I know him) in the distance,
under the giant mistletoe covered trees,
alone, wearing headphones,
ecstatically dancing
I’m happy with him, this dot, this point,
from a distance,
forgetting his self for a while

a small amateur choir practising a medieval canon, unsure at first, later creating magic
oh to be in the presence of humans singing a beautiful song just to create beauty
so deeply human, so divine

later, feeling a little bit alone and uncertain, everybody busy or away
but then feeling a sudden joy and sense of adventure … grabbing the coat and going for an evening walk
the little path along the creek,
ice over the water,
snow on the branches
the path is suddenly so beautiful that my heart opens

ice cold blue evening slow steps in the deep snow along the river
the patterns of branches,
sharp silhouettes against the sunset sky
silence, standing still, listening
the old apple trees

the flock of crows circling the double spires of the old monastery cathedral

for how many centuries has this flock been circling the church, every morning, every evening?
the birds change, the flock stays
six o’clock church bells


 
the small groups meeting for “essential mirroring”
which turned out to be so loving, respecting, such a precious meeting
that it can’t be described without distorting it –
“birth of a diamond”
afterwards, meeting one from the group outside, a hug, a talk, still shattered and overwhelmed
i look up – over us the icy constellations, a giant red star, it can’t be Mars at this time of the year,
not this straight overhead –
Antares? Beteigeuze not far away –
then a sudden shooting star, dim and fast but unmistakably.
“a shooting star” “so wish for something”
all that i always wished for (personally) is already materializing, magically, and much more, so much more.
she looks up and sees a shooting star too – shouting with delight


 
in the morning, still dark outside – waking up with that “strange immobility” in body and brain
that K speaks about in his diary – I read a random page. how strange that the “symptoms” are similar
like the engines of the mothership are running idle in my belly
that huge citadel, floating low above ground, lit up like a million christmas trees
coming for support, silently waiting – it has always been there but I wasn’t aware of it – I wasn’t aware

inner doing of years has slowly to be unlearned
any movement of inner doing is distortion
who am I to want something else than what is? how absurd.
to learn that doing happens on its own – this is not for the mind to grasp

then, chirping birds, another Wednesday
typing before breakfast, a friend shuffling the chairs around on the old wooden floor
a woman from the monastery cleaning the floor
loading talk recordings for editing, then breakfast
a silent breakfast again – trying not to disturb “this”


 
and then forgetting the connection to being, and landing in the old self again
like having been at the gates of paradise, peeking in, and being forced to leave again.
the pain of this is excruciating.
looking coldly at this I see that I have become a presence junkie –
attached to the deep beauty and the “rightness” of these experiences of being simply myself.
an object relation maybe – nutrition and security: mother comes and feeds me – everything is good. mother leaves and I’m alone – I get afraid she’ll never come back.

so I wake up on the last day of the retreat, very early, can’t fall asleep again
and I feel so desperately normal, as on the day before.
like on a monday morning, it is raining, you have to go to work, nobody smiles at you, the world is grey and cold and depressing.

I stay with the pain and the hopelessness, what else can I do.


 
and then something remarkable happens – I have not the faintest idea how and why.
some tiny thought that I don’t notice, some subtle movement,
and all of that falls off again, just vanishes in an instant, like it has never been there.
no more fear, no more hopelessness, no more doubts – no thoughts,
and I’m home again.
this time there aren’t any unusual feelings or sensations at all,
it is completely unspectacular –
and it is this unspectacularness that feels so incredible.
i look again – it is still there, just simplicity – lovely simplicity.
i am so happy that I have to cry, so I lie there – a grown up man – in my bed in the early morning
crying in my pillow, so happy that I’m me, simply this, what a relief, what an overwhelming gratitude

this will probably pass again, and come back again.
is being born always so difficult?


 
“no thought or fanciful emotion could ever conjure up such a happening;
neither of them, in their wildest endeavour, could build up these happenings.
They are too immeasurably great, too immense in their strength and purity for thought or feeling; these have roots and they have none. They are not to be invited or held; thought-feeling can play every kind of clever and fanciful trick
but they cannot invent or contain the otherness. It is by itself and nothing can touch it”
(Krishnamurti)

law of the bridgeless bridge:
the abyss is endlessly deep. eventually
you find that bridge and cross the chasm –
then looking back, you realize that there never was a bridge
nor an abyss –
you were always beyond it