Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Sunday on Big Beach: Leaves of the Universe

Sunday started out on Little Beach, but we moved over to Big Beach after our midday break to avoid the Drum Circle crowds. It was a great afternoon and evening. We sat on the beach, took in all the activities being carried on, played some paddleball and Scrabble and chatted. 

These two large dogs ran along the beach while their master swam (note left of picture)

The real treat that evening was taking in the sunset. I say "take in" because I had never before felt so energized by a sunset. I literally felt the energy emanating from the sun, along with that from the ocean. That energy, combined with the beauty of the sunset made for an amazing experience. As we sat there on the beach, the ocean ten to twelve feet below us and the huge expansive sky above, I felt as though I was sitting on a pedestal in the middle of a planetarium, picture and sound all around me. The sky seemed immense, the water immense, the energy everywhere around me and in me.

It was then that I had an experience similar to the one I had had last spring when we were here (which I wrote about here), only this time I didn't feel like I was a part of the earth and recognize my "nothingness" in relation to the earth.  This time, I felt like I was part of the cosmos, the universe, and I recognized both my nothingness in connection to the universe and my sense that I belonged to and am a part of the universe.

"We do not 'come into' this world; we come out of it, as leaves from a tree. As the ocean 'waves,' the universe 'peoples.' Every individual is an expression of the whole realm of nature, a unique action of the total universe. This fact is rarely, if ever, experienced by most individuals. Even those who know it to be true in theory do not sense or feel it, but continue to be aware of themselves as isolated 'egos' inside bags of skin."
- Alan Watts, The Book on the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are 

After Sunday night's experience, I could totally relate to and understand what Alan Watts was writing about in the above quote. On the way back to the condo that evening, I mentioned to Mark both the fear we as humans have of being "nothing" and the liberation that comes when we let go, when we overcome the ego that clings to "separateness" and "identity." 

The paradox is that when we allow ourselves to slip into nothingness, i.e., give up the ego, we come out of that experience with a greatly, vastly enriched concept of our self. This concept is no longer tied to and created and maintained by our ego, but is based upon an understanding of our connection to the universe. We come to know in the fibers of our consciousness that we are a part of that awesome power and magnificence. We transcend our "identity" as well as all the identities that others create for us and try to impose upon us.

What an amazing experience ...

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