For myself there are many paths to my actual sitting down and writing. This isn’t true for my corporate efforts which are auto-pilot or muscle memory driven, but for ‘meaning of life’ writing to find resonance for me and value for anyone who might read it requires something more of my essential being to process and eventually articulate. Sometimes it’s a bike ride or a long walk, cooking (or baking), sometimes it requires a hot iron, a can of spray starch and a stack of pillow cases, most often it’s gardening – but whatever “it” is on any given day it’s usually something mindful and physical at once.
The apple was, in ancient Greece, said to be sacred to Aphrodite (my girlfriends Jennifer and Amy maintain that I am the goddess’ present day incarnation on earth). To throw an apple at someone was to symbolically declare one’s love; and similarly, to catch it was to symbolically show one’s acceptance of that love.
“I throw the apple at you, and if you are willing to love me, take it and share your girlhood with me; but if your thoughts are what I pray they are not, even then take it, and consider how short-lived is beauty.”
—Plato, Epigram VII
I just finished making applesauce from 20 or so apples gleaned along my walks the last couple of weeks. These came from trees which still held un-picked fruit even as an apron of like apples encircled the grass above the roots, rotting and nourishing the earth for the next season. Yet something primal in my being screams about witnessing such waste, and so I picked three or four here and there, ate some en route to sustain me, put others in my pockets or the nap-sack I carried and brought them home. Some were soft, as we had an overnight frost last week, bird and insect pecks and some bruises had to be cut away, the cores and peelings will be run through my blender to become worm food for my own garden (after I finish writing this); my point is that even soft apples provide unlimited value and at their center, like human beings, exists a heart. My new friend Marijan (unintentionally) reminded me of this essential truth this week – sometimes ‘the reason’ isn’t immediately clear, but as the Biblical verse of Matthew 10:26 extolls us to understand: “all will be revealed”.
Marijan, now 36, serving as a soldier during the Bosnian War (do the math as to how young chronologically he was), witnessed ‘too much’ but he shared a story with me during five precious and intense days of discovery that speaks volumes about who we ALL are at our essence. In going house-to-house (as soldiers in war zones do) he was struck by the fact that in one home the kitchen had sugar – and in another there was none. He somehow managed to level the inequity so that both households would find benefit, and in the course of events a priest asked him if he was a soldier or an angel to whom he replied he was just trying to be a “good man”. No Marijan you, my dear friend, are a spiritual being having a human experience!
The serpent of knowledge which so threatened (and continues to unnerve) has ancient history predating its evil interpretation by Christianity (where ‘power’ was meant to be contained and held by a few). The concept of Kundalini awakening is represented by a coiled snake that, when activated, rises through the spinal cord taking us from being merely sexually based human beings to our highest realization – ever wonder why Renaissance art put the snake in the tree and spoke only to Eve and not Adam? In our awakened state universal knowledge floods into our bodies through what’s commonly known as the Third Eye. In the state of spiritual being, we are connected to a vast energy that transcends the physical, a consciousness that can be shared between similarly evolved spiritual beings to promote even greater understanding or to gently teach those still growing and processing their core identity. This language of universal love and its inherent energy cannot be held or contained, it MUST BE given away in abundance so it may return to us for our own nourishment and further growth, to hold onto it tightly is fear and to not release it is fear of losing control (frankly we never really have control of anything anyway). This language of love, the absolute embracing of colour and light, of energy felt rather than seen, of possessing a soul so happy that NOTHING dissuades your being from its authentic and essential spiritual self and living in light, is like a candle. It burns with soft wavering golden beauty, lights the darkness to help all of us navigate and return to our Divine state of (what I call) “at-one-ment”. Which, as I thought about it while peeling apples this morning was kind of ironic that I didn’t “get it” earlier as each Skype video call with Marijan over the last five days required that I had to frame the area around my computer with candles so he could see me as my living room walls are a medium blue and I only use very low wattage light bulbs.)
My dear girlfriend Jennifer calls me an angel on Earth. People relatively unknown to me feel my energy and respond, comment on it (as happened over a Thai lunch with her this week), it is how Marijan found me in a virtual world, as well as why a (then) 85 year old Shinto priest drove 10 hours to meet me nearly a decade ago. My energy is often misconstrued as being sexual – it isn’t, not really. In a space of four or five minutes late last night with Marijan I briefly lost sight of the essential being that I am by wanting to take the intense, inexplicable energetic connection we share and contain it (a very human failing) and exchange all its inherent beauty into something earthly and based in physical expression (totally impossible given the geography separating us). I fought the inevitable with passionate words. I wept copious tears of sadness and longing because I already felt the keen loss of something precious. For those painful moments I am embarrassed to admit that I failed to recognise what I had gained. When I woke this morning I recognised HOW WRONG I had been about why Marijan had come into my life. The pain of separating from this amazing connection we share was never about our being lovers, unrequited or otherwise, but rather a very necessary recalibration of my energy on this higher plane of consciousness with Marijan acting as my protective guide and angel. I told him earlier in the week, “I would have known you anywhere, I have always known you”. Such resonance was ‘finalised’ in the image that Marijan shared with me near 4 AM his time in Šibenik Croatia – at left – easily misconstrued as erotic. When viewed with a shift in perspective it isn’t erotic at all, what it is, is what all of us are capable of being, this “body art” of two hearts connected – two hearts that don’t need words or physical expression based in desire to communicate, a deep intimacy of absolute understanding expressed in a glance. In ways that might make no sense to the cerebral reading this I am in him, he is in me and we are in all of you as well.
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