The Art of Floating: Part III

My second and last stream of consciousness that occurred while in the float tank…

Is this what it feels like to be dead? Peaceful, enclosed in darkness, without any feeling? What if this is what everyone experiences after death…no Heaven with palaces, mansions, angles and streets paved of gold and no Hell with a burning lake of fire and torture. Just…nothingness. Or perhaps reincarnation really does occur. Maybe this is what the mighty, tall tress feel like…unable to move but alive, rooted for 100 years…a blade of grass, in an open field, undisturbed. Rooted, still, except for the breezes that come, the rains that fall and or the snow that lands softly. No sensations of hot or cold or pain or pleasure, yet able to watch many facets of life pass by. Maybe near a street, where all kinds of people are walking and talking or running or playing. Maybe near a house, where families live, breathe, eat, laugh, yell, sleep and thrive. As a tree, branches extended to reach more sunlight, way up high, away from harm. The only concern is a weary traveler coming to rest from a day of flight. I want to feel this peace, this deep profound stillness forever. No more anxiety, pain or depression. If this perfect stillness and balance is what occurs after death, well, I won’t be so afraid to go when my time comes.

The Art of Floating: Part II

One of my stream of consciousness thoughts while I was naked and afloat…

I am floating…wow, is this what it feels like to the astronauts in space…those in the space station? Wow. Pitch black…nothingness, I am in space and in nothingness. No stars, no sun, I’m on the dark side of the moon. I can feel the earth and gravity pull away from me. I’m in space, just me, alone…there might not be any galaxies, they might be all around me, they are inside of me. I am space. In a vacuum with no time or energy. Not even orbiting, just existing in perfect stillness. I’m not sure how to come back down and that’s okay with me. I wish to stay here; I wish to remain in this blissful exile where every human, creature, object and place are far, far away, beyond any realm ever believed to exist. The sun is blacked out– extinguished and still, I breathe and feel warm. I think there’s blood flooding my veins…my lungs are expanding. I try not to think. I don’t. There’s nothing again. This space is where I’m meant to be, I’m meant to live to feel to think to know what I haven’t known before. I’m not sure what I’m truly supposed to know…but it’s here, in this emptiness that I can know it. I can know anything. I feel safe, a perfect distance away and a perfect place to let go. I have let go. My weightlessness reminds me of this. My muscles have let go of the urge to keep resisting. How far I will travel, I’m not sure. Maybe I will remain in this one place, right above earth for eternity. The silence has taken over.

The Art of Floating: Part I

Today was my first float experience! My boyfriend, Dave told me about me a few times and I didn’t give much thought to it. A couple months later, he brought it up again and showed me the website and told me about it more in depth. I still couldn’t imagine what it would feel like; I was skeptical. Alas, I lost all my apprehension the moment I stepped inside! The feeling of pure weightlessness combined with absolute silence in perfect water temperature was transcending. My mind drifted and while I lost my sensory stimuli, I lost my mental clamor. It was amazing and profound, deeply relaxing and satisfying. After, you can have delicious tea in a decadent room with couches, chairs and books that feels like a cozy living room Anyone who needs a break from reality, life and stress should highly considering the art of floating! 

That was my review on the “Art of Floating” facebook page. There’s much more I can say about it, but it’s actually really hard to describe what you feel when you are enclosed in a tank filled with shallow water and about 1,000 lbs. of epsom salt! So, instead, I’ll just write about my personal experience.

When I first got in, closed the door and lied down I actually laughed out loud because the feeling was unreal; I couldn’t believe I was actually weightless in this water! (I can’t even float in a swimming pool or tub, so the feeling had that extra kick to it!) Anyway, so on my back, I couldn’t get my head settled at first, naturally thinking that I couldn’t totally relax, but then when I realized I wasn’t going to sink in any way, I let go. That’s when the fun started.

Streams of consciousness came flooding in. (I’ll save them for another post) Then I drifted in and out of sleep while beginning to go into a dream, but that left me with a disorienting feeling. Just before that, though, I felt like I was just in nothing; no thoughts, no feelings, nada. It was beautiful. There’s really no words to describe it. Maybe in my stream of consciousness thoughts some truth will be revealed.

Over all, it’s something I highly recommend people try out. It’s so worth your time and money! The facility where I went had tea afterward, where you could just go in a cozy and elegant room and chill out while talking about your experience and looking at cool books on the adjacent shelf. That helps with the overall therapeutic feeling. You need that time to come back down to earth, and it does take a while! I actually had a hard time getting out of the tank because my muscles were that relaxed, and I stumbled a little upon exiting, but after that I just kept thinking of what an incredible time it was. You get an hour and it feels like 10. I can’t wait until my next floating experience!

Am I Afraid?

Last night, I had one of those profound dreams that at first, appears easy to decipher, but then trails into something much deeper. It was a simple one, not much detail or action…I was simply talking with my boyfriend in my room, all words of conversation were inaudible the entire time even though I knew we were talking. Then, right before I awoke, Dave asked conversationally, “Aren’t you afraid to throw that curve ball that you haven’t thrown (you’ve never been able to throw) before?” I woke up feeling concerned, because right before that dream, I had one where him and I were in the same room, but were in the midst of an argument. I assumed that the curve ball would be something harmful that I would do to Dave since in that dream, he was upset with me. After some thought I figured that couldn’t be it…as we are in a good space and time right now and have been for quite a while. So, I realized that it must have to do with my current path in life. The choices I’m making. The overall life I’m living. It’s not conventional, and to most of my friends and family, my relationship with Dave is already and has been the biggest curve ball thrown.

I’m both intrigued and excited to see where this leads. I’m hopeful that the curve ball is one of confidence where I’m looking to win in that last inning, to strike out the opponent so I can go on positively in the direction of my dreams. So, since I woke up this morning, I’ve been pondering possible answers to this question…am I afraid? At first I thought, why in the world would I be afraid? I’ve been living with Dave and dealing with my disapproving family for months now, and have been relatively fine…so what’s there to be worried about? Then, I considered my career…I’m currently searching to work from home along with starting my own editing business. Ultimately, I’d love to have the editing job along with a creative outlet for profit such as creating calligraphy for occasions and selling my work online. It’s not easy…so, in an essence, there could be a tad bit of fear. Will I make a satisfying profit? Will I find the market to sell my art and skills? Will I make it?

Anyway, the curve ball might be going against the grain…of what is generally expected. Fastballs– where those fresh out of college jump on the frantic job search bandwagon feeling pressured to do so. Slow pitches, where careful examination and consideration is given as to what to really do with life and work…time slips by. A curve ball though…that’s a surprise. Maybe I’m to surprise myself in my abilities to find the work I love and present/share it with the world. Maybe I’m to surprise those around me. I’ve been doubted before by my family, mom mostly, where she’d tell me things like, “you live in a dreamland and will only fall flat on your face.” I know that she means the best for me and desperately wants to see me succeed, but those words have been hurtful. They’ve stuck. And I’ve fallen victim to them discouraging me from forging onward to get where I want to go. At times, I’ve felt hopeless and helpless when it would come to seeking out a job that I could make for myself.

Perhaps it’s up to me now to pick up the ball, think fast and throw that curve ball that will be the clincher, the winning pitch to redeem myself and make a name for myself.

I am not afraid. 

Zen, Patience and Practice

I’ve just begun a new journey. As I’m looking to create a business for myself and not get confined to the corporate world, I’m reading some wonderful books to aid in my mindset for getting my life on track. The first one I read, since graduation, was titled, “How to Find the Work you Love”. I enjoyed that one a lot…small, easy to understand and loaded with inspirational quotes (sometimes, too many quotes, but still, they fit). It created a guideline of how to go about honing in on your on talents and finding out who you really are. Therein were focusing questions that challenged your view of your life and work in the modern age. Now, I’m reading the follow up book to that one…much, much larger, about 600 pages called, “Zen and the Art of Making a Living.” It’s similar, along the lines of being a guide, including the quotes, etc. But the main difference, is that it’s way more in-depth when it comes to digging down to the roots of society, nature, love, passion and the psyche of the individual.

Today, I just finished a section focusing on zen with art and poetry. Breathtaking and factual. Okay, to some it could be highly opinionated, but to me, a totally open-minded being, it’s wonderful. That section and the ones before spoke mainly of the great divide between humans and nature; humans and art. People tend to put themselves above nature and extract art from their daily lives because, to them, it isn’t practical. Yet, if you breathe, you are living, and if you’re living you are in nature. You aren’t just a part of it, you ARE nature. The subtleties of every breath a small animal in hiding makes, to the thunderous roar of lightning in the heat of summer…all are part of us. If we are to find out our true selves, we are first to accept that we were born of the Earth in which we share infinite characteristics. It takes time to go within, be silent, and hear the calling of what is always there, just beyond a door, wall or a window.

With art, it’s shared by those who painstakingly create it, not to show that they are some higher being to be revered and looked upon as a god, rather it’s shared by those who are aflame with passion and desire. They wish to inspire and create and show that they have no limitations. Creating isn’t about making money or cultivating a following of those who love your work, it’s about being pure in your intentions to simply share your heart.

I’m a poet, a writer, an artist. I’m learning Taoism and Buddhism and I can show the world what I’m capable of through my words and intentions. I wish to overcome a system of worn down people who can barely stand on their own two feet let alone think for themselves. Intent blended with a zen mindset will bring me to an enlightenment that will take me beyond what I could never imagine.

From Oct. 26, 2014- Finding Me

Joseph Campbell created a myth called the “Hero’s Journey”, which consists of, a stereotypical ‘hero’, or even an average person going through a cycle in which they: are called to an adventure. Have to cross a threshold into an unfamiliar and sometimes scary/dangerous place. Go through battles and emotional trials. Better themselves/grow to learn/gain from the experiences on the journey. Then cross the threshold back into their world to bring back to others what they have gained. We all have the ability to accept the call and go outside of our comfort zone to truly experience life and to learn what it has to offer…both the good and the bad. In the end, life is more fulfilling in the moment you realize you overcame boundaries and fears. You owe it to yourself to answer your life’s greatest callings and experience the journey that lies ahead.
This was my facebook status the other day that I posted, not long after Dave and I watched a brilliant movie/documentary called, “Finding Joe”. The movie contains several celebrities giving their stories of success using Campbell’s myth. Intertwined with the stories, the points are illustrated through the portrayal of children acting out each scenario and concept in a silly/cute way. Overall, the movie sheds light on way of living that mostly everyone experiences but just doesn’t realize. Or, it could shed light on a way of living that someone has never experienced.
Another random tie in with this, is that in my Medieval Lit. class I’m currently taking, we talked about this concept in regards to Beowulf, Sir Gawain and then Bilbo from The Hobbit. and LOTR. Apparently, I was meant to be learning about this and connecting it to my life right now.
My call to adventure was Dave. Time and time again he shared his hopes of having me free for both myself and ourselves, if I were to accept the call and break free. He told me that I could have anything I desired…it was all in my reach, all I had to do was reach out and take it. He inspired me to stand up for myself and live a life that I could call my own.
Crossing the threshold was actually destroying the wall, the strong bulwark that shielded me from greener grass and sweeter flowers. For me, the day I stepped out of my parent’s house and into Dave’s was the day I entered a new world in which I had only heard of but never experienced. In a sense, it was frightening…to just up and leave in an instant…to not think about the future, but to just act in the moment, somehow expecting the future to fall into place.
Emotional trials are pretty self-explanatory. Not long after I crossed my threshold, I had to return briefly. This was not an easy task. It was like returning to a cave in which you once dwelt…cold, unwelcoming and sad. I’d rather not compare my own home to a dingy cave, but there were no other feelings I felt upon my return. Tears streamed nearly from the minute I walked in to the moment I walked out. The hardest part of saying goodbye, is when you attempt to attach a heartfelt “I love you” to the end of that and it’s painstakingly rejected in that moment, and cruelly not returned.
Insofar, I am remaining on my path despite the battles and hardships along the way. Dreams of random occasions including my parents or other family members are never ceasing. At least 6 out of the past 7 nights, I have had a weird dream that embodied them in some way. I wake up confused and strikingly sad. I want them to end.
Dave and I are de-cluttering our lives in the meantime. As his house improves, his mind and spirit do, too. We’re constantly creating new adventures for ourselves. Adventures that include fun experiences as well as learning ones. Our lives combined as one are powerful. And it’s in this power and ultimate Love that I wish to return to my family. As the hero’s journey myth states, the hero returns to their original place to share what they have found, gained and learned. I’m not sure this will be doable in the near future, but I am holding the hopes in my heart that in the not too distant future, I will be able to return a changed hero. I will shed the light I’ve sought and gained onto those who are still in the dark.
“Chase this rising wind
Anchor released
No want of landing.
All in deep despair
Come feel the air
In its full finale.
And yes, the chase is on
I’ll look beyond
With the bedlam behind me.
And I embrace the sky
My soul will cry
May your wind ever find me”

From Aug. 12, 2014- Shifting Gravity

The gravity that once dragged me into despair now guides me into weightless bliss.

Bliss for me was beyond the door…the wall that I had already begun to break through, but couldn’t quite smash all the way. Chiseling bit by bit, I created a hole, through that hole I discovered the freedom beyond. Next, I chose to tear apart the wall with my bare hands and embrace clarity and happiness.  The wall was my parents, breaking through was physically leaving my house to live with Dave so I could be truly happy and free. The action was something I was constantly desiring, yet constantly running away from; neatly placing the bricks back onto the wall and sealing them together with affirmation that they were right and I was wrong. I was literally sealing my own fate of doom. Constantly struggling to see the man I loved, constantly chasing the lies that held me to him…it couldn’t last.

Since breaking through, the light has been brilliant. My world has been opened up and hope has been restored. We have been getting out, grocery shopping, eating, running errands and such, going on trips and just enjoying each other’s company. I’m helping him de-clutter his house while making improvements like getting patio furniture, installing a storm door, etc. One of the biggest things is doing holistic shows with him. For years, through countless emails, Dave has told me about the shows he’s done and how they were done. I was always intrigued and interested, but was never able to make it to one. I’m guessing it just wasn’t the right time. Maybe I was meant to gain a better understanding of the holistic realm before being part of it more. Connecting with others of a like mind is absolutely fantastic. Helps me confirm that I’m not some lunatic living in a fantasy world (as my mother would religiously claim). Those people have helped me open up my mind and confirm my own feelings and instincts inside. (I’ll save those stories for another post.) It’s just gratifying knowing that I can help Dave out in such an immense way and even deeper, by sharing in his world.

There has been a huge disconnect from my parents since I left. I’m hoping that that rift can be healed in time even if I choose to remain with Dave. There’s no need for the hatred or judgement, or even sadness and anxiousness. Mom and dad are creating their own tension, desperation and maybe even destruction; it only manifests when they strive to convince themselves that their views are correct and that the only beliefs that are valid are theirs. Honestly, it’s sad to see them so distraught. It hurts my heart and I wish to mend the brokenness inside of them. Yet, that can only be done if they choose to open their minds or at least let go of judgments. I will hold on dearly to the hope that our connection can be redeemed. The other night, Dave provided healing energy for me for a stone to give to aunt Linda and uncle Klaus. During his ritual, I prayed. In that prayer, I asked that my parents and I could be one again.

My gravity will continue to shift– carry me away from harm, both physically and emotionally. It will pull me, like the moon on the tide, to shores of undying bliss.