January 14, 2021

 A couple new things this morning. First, I haven’t seen any sign of Griffin in a couple of days. I don’t know if he has moved on, if he is implicitly present or if he is just taking a break to do other things. Who knows? In any case, for the past two days I have found myself alone in the Imaginal and it’s alright. I feel like I have the stability and focus to be present there now. Maybe Griffin’s support was just until I became more surefooted in the Imaginal?

Until today I have always been sent on a mission of redemption for one soul but today it was two...and a half. I’ll explain about the half part later.


So, this morning just like other mornings, I didn’t seek to enter the Imaginal Realm. I just started my meditation, concentrating on the belly center and letting my mind empty of thoughts. Soon, I found myself seated on a rocky ledge looking out on the night’s sky. The moon was full and directly before me, casting its silvery light all around. Beside me was a seated figure glowing softly white. He was seated like the Buddha but he wasn’t THE Buddha. A spiritual teacher of some sort, although not my teacher. We acknowledged each other with a bow and then went back to sitting.


Soon, I found myself flying off the ledge and soaring over a snow-covered arboreal forest of great beauty. Packs of wolves with silvery forms and herds of deer or antelope threaded through the forest. I flew over the forest for a time, gradually approaching a nearby mountain range. As I neared the mountains, I realized the mountain in the center had been sheared off, leaving a V-shaped crater in its place. The sides of the crater were perfectly smooth like obsidian glass. They were slippery and angled in such a way to prevent whatever was inside the crater from getting out. (The crater with its shimmering obsidian sides was quite gorgeous.)


I landed at the bottom of the crater. It was a square, open-aired chamber. The moon shone down upon me. I followed the chamber into a narrow hallway that opened into a smaller, square chamber that was also open-aired.


On the floor of the chamber lay an old, white lion. It was clearly in bad shape, lying on its side and in a lot of pain. It was scarcely aware of me as I neared and I knelt down and cradled its head in my hands, looking into its tortured gaze. 


“Tell me your story,” I said. “Why are you here?”


Then I noticed that the beast’s side was pierced with a rainbow-hued sword. It was a fearsome weapon, clearly sharp and deadly. It looked like it had been lodged in the animal’s side for a very long time because there was no blood.


The lion didn’t answer my question but somehow I knew I needed to get him out of the chamber. For a moment, I wondered how I would do it but then a voice told me that, unlike the lion, I could climb out with my hands. I slung the poor, dying lion over my shoulders and clawed my way up the walls. The obsidian crumbled at my touch, allowing me to find easy purchase.


When we were finally out of the chamber, I lay the lion on the snow on a ledge overlooking the obsidian chamber. I couldn’t tell what I should do about the sword but finally decided to pull it out of the beast’s side. I slid it out and lay the sword on the snow next to us and then cradled the beast’s head in my lap, asking it once again to tell me its story.


There was a pause and then the lion transformed into a beautiful, young knight clad in mail and wearing a crest on his chest displaying a white lion rampant. I removed the helm from the soldier’s head and stared into his eyes. He smiled and then looked upward. I followed his gaze, my eyes traveling across the mountain range to the ledge where I had started this journey. The guru was still sitting there, shining like a beacon.


“My teacher,” the soldier murmured. “He’s my teacher. I was ordered to kill him because he was an infidel but I refused and killed myself instead.”


I looked from the guru back down to the sword lying on the ground beside us. I had assumed that someone had stabbed the knight with it, not that he had used the weapon on himself. Who knows if I’m right about this but it seemed that the knight was on the side of the Christians and the guru was obviously not Christian. Somehow, this knight had perceived the man’s holiness and had refused to obey his orders and opted to kill himself instead.


I helped the knight to his feet, trying not to notice how handsome he was. Mindful that I have been acting like just as much of a slut as I accused Griffin of being, I refused to go with my inclination to kiss him. The knight; however, was under no such prohibition and took the initiative, kissing me first. (I have to say that one of the perks of the Imaginal is the sex!) Like any gay boy, I’m a sucker for masculine men and melted against him. Soon, our hands were exploring each other’s bodies and we were naked, the knight’s armor scattered on the snow around us. He was indeed quite handsome and well-formed and eager to please. We enjoyed some fun, rubbing our bodies and erections against each other until we came and then lay down, savoring the moonlight and the night sky together.


After a while, it was time for the knight to be off and he stood and saluted, walking naked through the snow. I knew exactly where he was going; he was joining his teacher on the ledge. The guru would guide his journey from here.


***


After the knight left, I sat on the mountainside and contemplated what to do with his sword. I ultimately decided to throw it back into the obsidian pit because I have no need of a weapon in the Imaginal. I did so and it is now lodged up to the hilt in that shiny black floor.


I thought my journey was over at that point but a huge, rainbow-hued bird descended from the heavens, picking me up and flying me up to the surface of the moon where everything was glowing white. We landed on the frozen shores of a vast lake. On the shores of the lake stood an old woman dressed in white, fur robes. Was this the sage I ‘freed’ from the rainbow dragon several (Earth) days ago?


I approached her and we bowed, acknowledging our service to True Nature, and she indicated that I was to walk out onto the ice. I did so, walking across the shimmering ice. Beneath the drifting snow, fantastical fishes and other creatures were visible beneath the ice, drifting on hidden currents. I sat and my body heat gradually melted the ice beneath me until I had melted through and was swimming in those cold, crystal waters. I swam downward among the fantastic fishes, eventually landing on the bottom. The bottom was composed of the disintegrated bones of all those fish and other creatures, ground down to fine, white sand.


There was a mermaid monster waiting for me. I say a monster because she was simultaneously a grotesque caricature of a mermaid, a beautiful woman and a glowing green corpse. Her visage changed with the currents of the water. I bowed to her and approached, holding out my arms. As we embraced, I opened myself to her and entreated her to tell me her story.


I’m not sure I fully understood her story. I think she died by committing suicide, possibly by drowning. I’m not sure. I’m also not sure if she was connected in some way to the knight I visited just before. There was something significant about the moon and the way it shone down on the knight’s obsidian chamber. If I were to get romantic, I would say that there was some cruel irony in the lady in the frozen lake looking down upon her knight, forever out of reach and forever watching his half-dead body. Well, forever until today at least.


So, maybe I’ve just read too many fairy tales? The modern man inside me doesn’t like to dabble in heterosexist myths. You know, the kind where the princess is waiting for her knight to rescue her. It seems so tired and sexist. But part of me believes there is a grain of truth in this story, that the lady in the lake and the brave knight were somehow connected. Who knows?


In any case, I offered her freedom from the lake. She asked me how she could ever leave, given her monstrous and aquatic form? I told her, “Look into my eyes and you will find the way.” She did so and we fixed stares, the light of True Nature suffusing her and transforming her as I’ve witnessed it doing on so many of these strange journeys. I cannot take any credit for the transformation; I’m just a vessel or a catalyst. My job is simply to embody the light of True Nature as best as I can and let it do what it does best: Guide us to the light of Truth.


(You’ll note there was no sexual stuff between me and the lady of the lake, right? It never came up. Even though the intimacy was clearly there, we didn’t take it further. Does this indicate that I have work to do on myself because my sexuality only shows on the Imaginal journeys involving men? Quite possibly. Having sex in the Imaginal doesn’t feel like a transgression and I’ve never instigated it without the consent of the other party. Still, it does seem to happen a lot. I don’t know whether to be embarrassed or just accept it.)


The lady in the lake lost her monstrous form. It dissolved around her and she became a beautiful woman, swimming up to the surface of the lake and exiting through the hole I had made. Once on the surface of the ice, she saw the old woman, her waiting guide, and walked to her. Then they left. Where they went is anyone’s guess but they were no longer in the Imaginal Realm. I’m assuming the same thing happened with the knight; i.e., his teacher guided him where he needed to go next.


I am so touched by the mercy and love of True Nature. It’s message is heartbreakingly beautiful: No one is beyond redemption, no matter what. What a humbling and beautiful thing to know!


***


I thought I was done but, no, there was more. After emerging from the waters of the frozen lake, I sat among the glowing white trees and took a breather, thinking over everything that had just transpired. It left me bemused. Everything happens so fast here in the Imaginal! In the physical realm, redemption is so much more fraught because we are contending with the ego and its vicissitudes. It’s so stubborn and resistant to change, inertia is its middle name. In the Imaginal, the ego is gone and therefore the soul is more malleable, more easily affected and transformed. It’s a very efficient method but my sense is that I’m only witnessing part of the process.


My theory right now is that the Imaginal is the realm that souls first encounter after physical death. They enter it usually only for a short period, long enough to be met by a guide who takes them...well, wherever it is that souls go after they die. I have no idea where this is and don't have access to it. I may never have access to it while I am physically alive...or maybe I will. Who knows?


The souls I am encountering here are lost due to any number of reasons. Suicide may be the cause, as I saw today. Or the person may have been particularly evil in life, so evil that no one wanted to guide them after death. Or they may have died in a cataclysm of such magnitude that they got forgotten. I’m just guessing. Maybe it will become clearer the more I journey here...if True Nature invites me to journey back again. I have no idea how long these expeditions will last.


Anyway, I was sitting there, contemplating these questions when a very dark shadow fell over me. It was the shadow of a devil or demon but I wasn’t fooled; the demonic form was just that: A form. The being approaching me was human at his heart. There was a feeling that the demon held me in contempt, especially the idea that I might be a vessel for its redemption. It believed itself too evil to deserve redemption; indeed, it almost seemed to revel in its evil.


Again, I wasn’t fooled.


There was something queer, as in homosexual, about this demon and I suspect that homosexuality may be at the heart of its belief that it’s beyond redemption. In any case, I held out my hand and accepted its challenge. I invited this queer demon inside me and opened up to him, making everything that comprises my soul available to its inspection. I gave it free rein to explore and see for itself whether there is a truth to redemption. I also wanted it to see my history, my memories, my experiences because they might prove useful to it.


At this point, I was too tired to go further and my time in the Imaginal was drawing to an end, for today at least. The other half of the demon’s story will have to wait until tomorrow.


***


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