Monday, December 8, 2008

The View from the Bridge

The View from the Bridge

From the bridge he had a clear view of the sky, and it seemed God was breathing there. The fulminating clouds were like the lungs of life, livid with oxygen and the spirit of being - flaming in the heavens and bringing warmth to earth and water.

He breathed deeply in response and the spirit flowed into him, shooting fire into his depths and igniting the anguish that clung to his secret shadows. It burned and seared, yet he rejoiced in the pain and wept tears of gratitude.

Looking within, he saw his heart at last. Illumined by the flames, it was a darkened bitter fruit seemingly decayed beyond hope. His tears flowed in earnest as he took the first bite and swallowed.

And remembered the words of Stephen Crane . . .

In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said, "Is it good, friend?"
"It is bitter -- bitter," he answered;
"But I like it
Because it is bitter,
And because it is my heart."


  1. Beeeee...uuuuuu...tiiiiiiil...fuuuuuuull!!!!!!

  2. Past few days of writing AND comments have been truly inspirational. All I can say is that I really can relate. It feels to connect to other Bridge People. Thanks:-)

  3. "He breathed deeply in response and the spirit flowed into him, shooting fire into his depths and igniting the anguish that clung to his secret shadows"
    I just this morning read in a very cool book, of the early Christians take on...
    'Divine Alchemy' a chapter entitled, 'Elemental Initiations';
    fixed physicality is represented by Earth,
    ever-changing psyche by water, invisible consciousness by air and the Mystery, hidden in everything like energy, by fire...suffice to say through the different stages, the final realization is represented by the baptism of fire, in which one's sense of being seperate from the Mystery of God is finally extinguished in the all-consuming light of the dazzling darkness. Pretty cool huh?
    PS Perhaps I should just store this stuff in my treasure box... but if you could see my face it is quite clear, I literally have a big mouth! :-D

  4. What I have written here has come out of a discussion that I've been having with a friend who says that I am too negative and that I should focus more on the positive.

    I have told her that, actually, I am extremely positive. Because, by focusing on whatever is negative within me, and by being with it without condition, I release it. Through which my innate positivity shines through.

    However, maybe there is something in what she says. I am wondering, is there a danger that, in the rush to heal ourselves and be free of our "stuff", that we are actually manifesting more "stuff"? That, somehow, due to how good we feel when we release the crap, we want more of that feeling? Hence the need to create more "stuff" to release?

    That this is all our "needing to feel better" coming in through the back door?

    So, I'm wondering - and I would be interested in how people feel about this - do we get a perverse pleasure from how bitter our heart tastes? Due to the sweet aftertaste? Do we, actually, therefore seek to make it more bitter than it actually is?

    By saying, "I like it, because it is bitter, and because it is my heart", is there a danger that we are taking on the identity of the wounded heart or the wounded soul for ourselves? That we somehow have some kind of investment in seeing ourselves like that?

    I think that, essentially, we are all whole, complete and perfect; that we are completely, 100% healthy - because we are all manifested through the divine light of God, and would God manifest anything that was not completely, 100% healthy? That was not whole, complete and perfect?

    In saying all that - and in recognising the bitterness of our heart, which feels (and tastes) completely real and true for us - I think that it's easy to lose sight of our innate wellness due to all the heartbreak and sadness and anger and grief that we have all experienced. That there came a point in time when it felt so real and so true that it seemed that that was who we really were. And our wholeness and our perfection and our divineness became but a distant memory ...

    But, maybe, my friend is right: for everything we focus on that concerns "our bitter heart", maybe there is a need to balance this out through recognising us as divine beings of light with hearts that are free of any bitterness?

  5. Good point, Phil.

    For years the mental realm policed my existence so strongly that by definition feeling “good” was actually feeling nothing at all.

    Now there are very difficult passages, but they feel real. Pain is a sign of being alive.

    Maybe a sense of being perfect and 100% healthy will come, in its own time.

  6. We have so many questions as we begin to real-eyes so much, in this experience of awakening. I am finding the most challenging and yet the most 'effective way', is to focus on being present and grounded in each moment and going about our daily lives as has been exampled to us...just as it is. I experienced a most profound 'present moment' and truly percieved and felt eternity, while singing my heart out as I washed the dishes. This was 25 years ago and it just spontaneously occured. When we blow off the practice of not-doings we are no longer grounded and anchored at the causal level. In fact, I have a sink full of dishes right now reflecting my lack of commitment to being present in my own life.
    I desire to believe with integrity and action...the depth and breadth of the 'TPP' and that when we shut our physical eyes tight and open them into the beautiful dark space within, it is there that we must ask the questions, in the silence and stillness...then the answers will come in our everyday life or in the deep dark stillness of our nightime sleep. I have a hard time staying in this body, but as a guy at work said the other day, Words are like leaves, where they most abound, therein little fruit is found...or as my Mother would put it "Your all talk and no action!" lol. I guess what I'm trying to say for me anyway, is when I am not involved in my day, connecting with and loving myself and Puppys or heart & soulfully caring for my home,and the beings placed right in front of me, I can read and write my ass off, but it is meaningless...I think a prayer for presence is in order for my experience... and a deeper realization that this journey is a process... so would ya put out a good vibe here please?

  7. Hi Nesia/Count Down,

    I can totally relate to where you are coming from. And I think a lot of us are drawn to this blog and The Presence Process because we have all gone through so much pain and heartache, that "feeling good" seems a lie - and anyone who promises it must be a liar.

    That is why this whole concept of rejecting everything the world has to offer appeals to us. Because the world promises us that it can make us feel good. And we know, from bitter experience, that it is a lie.

    My own story is that I hugely miserable and depressed until my mind-20s. The only respite for me from this was first my favourite football team, Arsenal - as well as other English sports such as cricket. Then, in my late teens, I discovered that I could write, and this creativity gave me a new lease of life. Until that is, the publishing industry rejected the novels that I wrote. At the same time I discovered alcohol, and for the first time in my life I actually felt comfortable around people - of course, it's an illusionary comfort, but it felt better than nothing.

    Most especially, thanks to alcohol, I actually ended up having sex with women. And having been a virgin until I was 21 this was a really big thing for me.

    But then, during the course of my mid-to-late twenties, I lost interest in Arsenal, in writing, and in drinking. Or, rather, I lost hope in these things, because they no longer seemed to work for me.

    At which point I started this journey of self-development/spirituality.

    I used to hate God - that is, when I believed that (S)He/It existed. Because given the state of my life and state of the world - which seemed just as bad - he had to be a complete a-hole.

    Anyway, so that's my story, that's my drama.

    Over the last 10 years I have engaged in this journey of self-development/spirituality. I would say that the first 9 years of this were an ongoing struggle, an uphill battle, where I seemed to be going nowhere slow. Where every victory and advance was followed by a shattering defeat and a long and horrible retreat back into my "stuff".

    Anyway, at the start of this year I did a 10 day Vipassana meditation retreat. And it was like the floodgates opened. Like all the striving and struggling of those 9 hard years finally forced some God-damn movement inside.

    And this year, as a result of this, I have been more confused than I have ever been. Life has seemed more perplexing, more bizarre and strange than ever. And so many times, over the last 12 months, I have no idea what to say, or how to act, which is very annoying as self-expression is very important to me.

    Then I did TPP from August to November which really shifted my life from it seeming like a never-ending struggle for little reward, to a life where know I genuinely believe that anything possible. That there are no limits. That just as I was the one who set the limits on myself, I am the one who can free myself of these limits.

    And now, as this year comes to an end, and we head into 2009, I feel so ready to hit life running that it feels incredible. I have no idea how my life will unfold, but it will be truly, truly amazing. That I know. That I choose.

    So keep the faith. That sense pf being perfect and healthy WILL come from you. But you do need to set this as your intent. That is all you can do. And once you do it, the universe will set the wheels in motion. That is what I choose to believe, anyway

  8. Hello Phil,

    You are very gracious in sharing your story with the readers here. Thank you.

  9. Thank you, Nesia, I appreciate that. I'm grateful for everything that has been shared here and I'm glad if I can give something back.