Lesson 37: Against Midnight's Dumb Abysses
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The reminders of your personal struggles, large or small, are constant. The “material cage” in which you live is guarded on all sides by the neurology that imprisons you. The neurology defines everything you see, smell, taste, hear, touch and intuit. The neurology is the prison guard. Your past experiences determined your perceptions and before you knew it, you were unable to see what was really happening. In short, you’ve got a problem with reality. But it’s OK. Everybody does.
It is this cage that all religions, schools, philosophies, therapies, self-help books and political and social movements try to resolve and eradicate. You think the cage came from somewhere else, someone else, God, Satan, your parents or life itself. Some of those formulas have been at it a long time and have accomplished very little. In fact, many of those approaches have done as much harm as good.
Now, notice with great accuracy that your version of reality is nearly 100% of the time congruent with your past experiences. Notice that your version of reality is accustomed to a certain fixed and well-defined state. But as is true with aspects of your life, it is only your willingness to tolerate it that prolongs it. You are not obligated. The mind need not be imprisoned by your past and your experiences but nonetheless, the voices of pain and loss resurrect themselves in the most mundane of circumstances.
Savitri is confronted once again by Death and reminded of her dismal lot in life.
“O mortal, turn back to thy transient kind;
Aspire not to accompany Death to his home,
As if thy breath could live where Time must die.
Think not thy mind-born passion strength from heaven
To uplift thy spirit from its early base
And, breaking out from the material cage,
To upbuoy thy feet of dream in groundless Nought
And bear thee through the pathless infinite.
Only in human limits man lives safe.”
“Know the cold term-stones of thy hopes in life.
Armed vainly with the Ideal’s borrowed might,
Dare not to outstep man’s bound and measured Force
Ignorant and stumbling, in brief boundaries pent,
He crowns himself the world’s mock suzerain,
Tormenting Nature with the works of Mind.
O sleeper, dreaming of divinity,
Wake trembling mid the indifferent silences
In which thy few weak chords of being die.”
So, I want to ask you something. But what if you could? What if? What if you could train your mind not to accept these terms and conditions of living? What if a new conversation began between you and the cells that make up your physical body? The cells…the waiting receivers of incoming information…waiting for the signal…suddenly…hears a different signal. The mind freed…if but for only a moment…free from the past…free from fear…empty…rises.
“The Woman answered not. Her high nude soul,
Stripped of the girdle of mortality,
Against fixed destiny and the grooves of law
Stood up in its sheer will a primal force.
Still like a statue on its pedestal,
Lone in the silence and to vastness barred,
Against midnight’s dumb abysses piled in front.
A columned shaft of fire and light she rose.”
The description above is real. It exists. It is available to you because you, too, are a columned shaft of fire and light. It is not going to be in the escape of your issues that you will find what you are looking for. You will find what you are looking for right in the middle of the mess, right in the middle of midnight’s dumb abysses that are piled right in front of you.