April 23, 2024

 This morning’s experience was of the trippy, fantastical variety reminiscent of my first journeys into the Imaginal. I even went back to the white and cobalt blue city that I visited in my initial excursions into the Bardo.


I started off thinking about how very strange most of the people are who do spiritual work. It seems like the people with the healthy egos don’t do spiritual work even though they are the best candidates. Instead, it’s a thieves' den of broken and unstable people (I don’t exempt myself from this classification) and these tend to have egos that aren’t well suited for the extreme dissolution required for spiritual transformation. Consequently, the broken become seekers and it takes them a very, very, very long time to in general to truly change. Most barely shift their perspectives at all. It’s kind of dispiriting.


I began my meditation with that thought on my mind. After sitting for a while, I heard a voice, the voice of the Divine in my heart. It said, “I called you and you listened. You did the work. You are deserving because you listened and acted. This is why I have blessed you.” It brought tears to my eyes to hear this. It continued, “I call to every human being without exception. Everyone receives my call and almost no one listens. Fewer still act. And, of those, only a handful stay true. You are one of those. Never think that you’re unworthy.”


I cried and cried, the words echoing in my mind. I surrounded by blackness, by the Absolute. I was one with the Absolute, my very nature.


After a while, I realized I was being pressed up against by black cats. I was in a cave full of them and I was a black cat myself. At first, I was reminded of my original brother who visited me some weeks ago in the guise of a black panther but I soon understood while these cats were huge–even bigger than a black panther, big enough for a full-grown person to ride upon–they were different. This cave was in the desert and the rock had been carved into an ornate temple. I recognized it as belonging to the Egyptian goddess, Bast. (It’s interesting how many encounters I’ve had with Egyptian deities. The last one was Sobek.)


Bast appeared before me as a woman with the head of a panther. She beckoned to me and followed her through the darkened temple and out to the entrance. There, we gazed upon a vast desert of blindingly white sands. She gestured to the desert, saying, “I need you to carry me because I cannot touch the sand but you can.” With that, she climbed upon my back and I carried her out of the temple and out into the desert, the blazing, white-hot sun overhead. As soon as my paws touched the sand, my fur turned from black to white. Bast likewise changed, her cloak turning white and her panther head’s fur turning white.


I carried her across the desert, over long, low dunes and up big inclines. Finally, we reached a river that served as a sort of boundary. Its waters were pure cobalt blue and the contrast of its icy waters against the white sand was both stark and beautiful. There was a ferry waiting for us on the bank of the river and we climbed inside.


As we boarded the ferry, we took on fully human forms. She was a beautiful, lithe woman wearing a delicate white muslin dress that hugged her every curve. I was, well, I was just me. We stood together at the bow, watching the far bank approach as the ferry pushed across. When we reached the shore, I recognized the place: A white city, a nexus of souls who are traversing the Bardo. The streets and buildings were all pure white stone and the sun was high overhead in a cerulean blue, cloudless sky. The place was abuzz with souls on their journeys and we stepped off the ferry onto the dock, getting lost in the crowds.


Bast stopped and embraced me, hugging her soft, lithe body against mine. I was reminded how she is the goddess of fertility. Such is her beauty that even I–the biggest homo ever–was tempted by her. Our hug, however, was chaste and affectionate; she wished it to go no further than a thank you.


Holding hands, we made our way through the crowded streets to a central plaza. The plaza was in the shape of a tremendous sundial, the numbers made from gems of sparkling cobalt. In the center of the plaza was an immense, white tree with enormous, outstretched branches. Even its leaves were white. In the trunk, I saw, the bark was pulled away in the shape of a doorway. The doorway was open and I could see the midnight blue of the night sky, sparkling with stars, within. We approached the doorway, still hand in hand, and I led Bast inside.


Inside, we entered an immense glass cathedral whose dome opened onto the cosmos. It sort of goes without saying how beautiful it was. We scarcely had time to admire the beauty, though, before a wormhole opened up before us. I was reminded of another one of these journeys recently where it was like entering the black sun of an eclipse but this wormhole opened not into blackness but into the cosmos.


I remembered my encounter with Sobek and how he had found me because he was ready to incarnate again. I wondered if this would be a similar journey for Bast but I was mistaken. She had no intention of incarnating, at least not right now. Instead of going into the Absolute and emerging at the Crossroads, we dissolved into the cosmos. (It was similar to dissolving into the Absolute but without the annihilation.) Before she dissolved completely, she said to me, “Thank you. I think I will stay here a while. Goodbye.” And then she was gone.


I was left in the vast spaciousness of the cosmos. Gradually, the night sky darkened and I could tell I was back underground. Here I received a teaching on the sacredness of everywhere, everything. I was shown how even the most profane and dirty experiences are actually holy. The Divine doesn’t reject anything and it’s impossible to separate anything from the Divine. Therefore, it makes no sense to classify some places or experiences as holy and others as unholy. Excrement, piss, dirt, blood, bodily fluids, sewage, everything is holy, all is sacred. The depths of hell are sacred as if the most profane evil. 


As I absorbed this wisdom, I saw my journeys in a new light. I’ve often wondered why so often my experiences are so-called underworld experiences. Does this mean that I’m somehow corrupt? Am I near the bottom rung because there’s something wrong with me? This teaching, however, showed me the sacredness of my journeys. Further, it showed how it is my ability to see the holy in everything that makes it possible for me to go to the places that I do. It’s not a mistake and I’m not flawed in some way. (I may not be perfect but that doesn’t mean I’m flawed.)


After a time, I saw a pair of fiery orange eyes watching me. They were surrounded by many other pairs of glowing orange eyes. The creatures that the eyes belonged to were like a curious combination of bats and beetles. They were both hideously ugly and adorably cute. I immediately felt my heart go out to them. Because we were underground in basically what amounted to a cesspit, I understood them to be decomposers who toiled in the dirt and decay, bringing new life out of death. Their eyes were like the fires of hell but I didn’t feel any evil from them at all. In fact, as I watched them, they approached and began to touch me with their many, soft legs. Their eyes were now like ripe persimmons rather than the fires of hell. 


They led me to a chamber that was fleshy and orange inside, like the center of a ripe fruit. An underground fruit that was enormous and filled with seeds. It looked like a fig inside but its flesh was the color of persimmon. Within the central, fleshy chamber there were millions of soft, clear, squishy insect eggs and writhing larva. The larva were perfectly clear and strangely beautiful. As I watched, some of the larva metamorphosed into glass wasps, the most delicate and extraordinary creatures I’ve ever seen. The wasps had very long, slim legs and gossamer wings. I stared in awe as they took flight, winging their way upward toward a hole at the top of the fruit. From there, they flew off into the night.


Movement in the Imaginal is implied. This means that you only have to see something to be there. Looking up at the ‘chimney’ in the top of the fleshy fruit, I saw the night sky and then was outside. I was standing in an immense forest of glass trees. Everything was radiant and clear. All of the insects, plants, animals, trees, fungi, etc. were glowing glass. This isn’t to say they were brittle like glass, just clear and delicate as glass. Words can’t describe the breathtaking beauty.


An immense, silver moon was overhead. As I looked up and saw it, immediately I was there on its surface. In some ways it was like the white sands of the desert that I’d crossed with Bast upon my back but this was no sand. Rather, it was a moon of silver seas and I was standing upon a boat sailing across its waters. I rode at the helm, the wind in my hair and a smile on my face. On the horizon, I finally spied a rocky island with an immense, black tower. I recognized the black as the black of the Absolute, my true home, and grew excited.


The boat took me to the shore of the craggy island and I climbed down onto the rock, making my way up to the obsidian tower. It absorbed me inside as soon as I neared and I was in complete darkness. This was the dissolving darkness of the Absolute, so dark, so black and so annihilating that it eclipses everything that enters it. I blacked out, losing consciousness briefly, several times. It sounds scary but it’s really just like falling asleep at night, except this is falling asleep while awake. 


I’ve described the Absolute as my true home and that is how it always feels: Like I’m coming home.


***


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