FOR ME, AWAKENING into the awareness of the present moment, or what I would prefer to call presence, has been a gradual process. When I was very young I had a series of “aha! moments,” revelations that gave me a sneak preview of sorts into present moment consciousness. Of course, these revelations for most who are in their 20s or 30s get lost in the busyness of life. One near-death experience at the age of 36, then another at the age of 40, opened my mind and my heart much more to this timeless reality, or eternity.
What I have come to know as a very solid truth is that the energy body, and especially the heart center, is a portal through which presence, or eternity, seeks expression into the world of space and time. Quite a number of years ago Fritjof Capra explained to the lay person the way in which this timeless reality intersects with our space/time world. In his book, The Tao of Physics, Capra used the example of the swinging pendulum, about that exquisite moment each time the pendulum reached the end of its swing in one direction, stopping momentarily, before beginning again movement now in the opposite direction. I can remember “grokking” that in my body, between each heartbeat, between each breath, there was this same still moment, and it was through this stillness that presence, or divine radiance, could be experienced.
But my knowledge of how time and eternity were related did little to change my way of seeing the world or how I lived my life. It would take a number of waves of devastation to break down my egoic structures and the conditioning of my very mechanistic and materialistic culture to truly help me to awaken to a new way of feeling and living.
I remember a pivotal point in my journey, in 2006, just a year after leaving my marriage and my business as a landscape contractor, when a woman I did not know contacted me. She had seen some things I had written online, and she knew about my deep devotion to the teaching of A Course in Miracles and my more recent devotion to the teaching of Eckhart Tolle.
My new friend, who had traveled for several years studying with Eckhart Tolle, and was now training to become a facilitator of The Work of Byron Katie, proposed that we sit together daily for one month and do a silent meditation while listening to a section of Eckhart Tolle’s “last” retreat in Costa Rica, entitled “Freedom from the World.” (Tolle went into retirement after this retreat late in 2002, and the DVD series was published in 2004. Later, Tolle would be pulled out of retirement by the influence of Oprah Winfrey).
Our early morning joined silent meditation was so powerful that at the end of the month, we committed to continue for another month. It was somewhere in this second month that the “final” download came into my heart center. The word singularity became dominant for me, reflective of the directive attributed to Jesus: “…If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.” Being washed, again and again, by this divine light, presence, one becomes truly changed at the core. No longer do the mundane things of the world seem so important, in the same way that lingering close to death, our own or that of one very dear to us, teaches us.
Today, at 61, I can fully incorporate (bring fully into the body) what were strange revelations at 21, and deep heart yearnings at 41. To allow this relationship with eternity to become aligned with and in balance with the relationship that we enjoy in the space/time world, what I call “walking with one foot in eternity,” is amazing. Literally, what this offers is a deep sense of peace, a calm patience, because our relationship with time has been tempered by timelessness.
Our relationship with the physical world has been altered by the awareness of our true home that we carry with us, in the energy body and heart center, everywhere we go. I call this heart condition BIG LOVE!