Kundalini Splendor

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Thursday, May 03, 2007

Ivan Granger's Experience, Continued 

Here is Ivan Granger's description of what followed his initial awakening experience. The great saints and mystics are said to enter into and maintain a constant state of bliss. For the rest of us, the bliss tends to be intermittent, varying in intensity and duration. Sometimes we feel abandoned when the bliss states no longer occur.

The latter are sometimes called "dry periods." For the deep mystic, such times can be profoundly troubling, suggesting some inner unworthiness, some failure to "please god."

However, ecstasy, like many other areas, requires attention and time to cultivate its presence. Recently, when I was feeling dismay during a such a "dry spell," I realized that I had not been doing any kind of regular practice to allow it to manifest. My friend Jeannine said that this reminded her of her own experience when she had written to our small internet circle of friends, and no one had responded to her letter. Then she realized that in fact she had never opened the computer to see.

And in fact many of us, given the choice, would not opt for continuous ecstatic flow. We have work to do in this world, and need to shift our attention to the outer, as opposed to the inner realms. Honey tastes good, but sometimes we yearn for plain bread and cheese.

For me, each ecstatic moment is an act of grace, something which I receive but which I do not and indeed cannot "make happen." It is the ultimate verification of connection with divinity, the reminder that there is indeed much more to this universe than any of us might dream of. It is a form of prayer, a blessing which I frequently receive as I bow before Buddha and feel streaming bliss enter my head. Then for twenty or thirty minutes, I am "with god" and know truly unconditional love.

And as I finish, I send this "body prayer" out into the universe, in the hopes that all sentient beings will benefit therefrom.

Yeats said, "Man (sic) can embody truth, but never know it." For me, to experience bliss is to emobody truth and the closest I ever expect to come to the untimate.

Here is Ivan's description:

For me, the most consuming aspect of the experience, where I was only minimally aware of even a body, lessened within maybe an hour. But the permeating glow that we've all called bliss remained very strong and fairly constant for maybe four or five months afterward, where the sense of an entity named "Ivan" seemed to be more of an interesting idea rather than an inescapable reality. This was also the period when I particularly tasted the flow of nectar. Eventually even that awareness lessened as well, or perhaps you might say it has moved to the background. It started to come and go, often requiring more focused effort to recognize it. As I committed to more of an active life and work, particularly after moving from Maui back to the mainland, the spaces between sometimes seem spread further apart.

When I first noticed those gaps, it felt almost like abandonment to me. But these days I feel very content with the pattern. Well -- I periodically shift things in my focus and life to stay more intimately connected to that bliss, but it's not necessarily my goal to be immersed in it all the time. I feel like I've got work to do where I still find a functioning "Ivan" still useful.

It is my belief that every experience, even a profoundly spiritual one like I've tried to describe, is a phenomenon of awareness that comes and goes. The real goal, I think, is to dive deeply into Reality, not so much to have impressive "experiences" of that reality. Of course, those experiences of bliss and nectar are important. For me they are like an initiation. They let the mind know that a threshold has been passed, and I am not what I once thought I was

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