I recently came across one of my favorite poems, My Brilliant Image, by the fourteenth century Persian Poet, Hafiz:
One day the sun admitted,
I am just a shadow.
I wish I could show you
The Infinite Incandescence
That has cast my brilliant image!
I wish I could show you,
When you are lonely or in darkness,
The astonishing Light
Of your own Being!
Hafiz is telling us that the astonishing light, the brilliance of our own being, is already with us. We are filled with great light that permeates everything. Brian Swimme, Evolutionary Philosopher and Co-Collaborator of the documentary film, Journey of the Universe, calls it “allurement”. What we are talking about here is love. Allurement and love mean the same thing. It is allurement that brings the particles and atoms together. It is allurement that brings atoms into communities called molecules. And it is allurement that is bringing us into the awareness of our truth, the astonishing light of our own being. This is exactly what Eben Alexander, author of Proof of Heaven, and Anita Moorjani, author of Dying to Be Me, experienced while lying in a hospital room in a coma. They both discovered that “heaven” is a state, not a place. This astonishing light or “state of heaven” is everything…it is the earth, the plants, the air, the wind, the trees, the animals, all of that, and it is also YOU! Yet, most of us don’t realize it. Like Sleeping Beauty, we pricked our finger on the spindle of the mental world and we have gone to sleep.
I use the meadow metaphor in my book, What’s In the Way IS the Way, to illustrate the beauty of our being. It includes flow, spaciousness, light, love and stillness, and it has always been with us. But, we haven’t noticed these qualities of the meadow in ourselves because we have so often been engulfed in struggle. When we are in a dark place, facing any challenging situation in our lives, most of us are caught in our minds and we don’t see the beautiful meadow. We only see the cloud bank around our heads. But, as we begin to bring awareness to the struggling self, we begin to realize that the meadow has always been there.
Even if we only see these glimpses of the struggling self for a brief moment, this is a moment of consciousness. I like to call this moment of consciousness “Look to Unhook”. Rather than identifying with the feelings, one way to unhook from them is to say “I am sensing in me something that feels lonely” rather than “I feel lonely” or “I am sensing in me something that is terrified” rather than “I am terrified”. When we are identified with the feelings that fear brings up inside of us, we feel cut off from life. When we can say to ourselves “I See You”, we are relating to the loneliness or darkness, rather than from it. By doing this, we begin to create a relationship with that young part of us that was conditioned into a world of fear. Eventually we can learn to be with our feelings for longer periods of time, but it is a process. The first step is recognizing what is going on inside of us and then realizing that our states of mind are just stories in our heads. Then, we can begin to see the light and love that we are as we learn to bring spaciousness to these dark, lonely, fearful states of mind. And, like Sleeping Beauty who was kissed by the Prince, we can begin to wake up. The Prince called Life is waking us up.