What is love? What is life? What is time? Please tell me. What are the words you choose? Are there words that can accurately convey these concepts? Well, we try to come up with them. But in my experience words are so limiting and often fail miserably at communicating such subjective and powerful ideas.
It’s like trying to describe to someone what it feels like to jump out of an airplane. You could say, “It was awesome, dude!” Or you could be more specific and say, “All I could hear was the wind rushing and my heart pounding.” In any case, I’d be willing to bet the only surefire way I’d understand what it was like was if I took the plunge myself. And that experience would no doubt leave me with different impressions than others. Maybe I’d see a glimpse of heaven. Maybe I’d squeeze my eyes shut and cry “I want my mommy!” the whole way down. This is what makes the human experience so fascinating. We are all constantly filtering what we experience and applying it directly to our own personal state of being.
A fellow blogger recently wrote a great post on blogging in general. And I thought of how we sometimes struggle to write. We want desperately to put words down that will clearly describe an idea in our minds. But why do we even have that desire in the first place? Why bother? Basically, aren’t we saying to another person, “Hey, check this out. This is me. This is who I am and how I see the world. Do you like it? Do you understand it?” Hopefully the other person does and responds, “Yes, I get it. I see what you see.”
There is nothing like that basic validation. That feeling of: I exist and I matter. I can connect with others. And others do understand how it feels to be a mom/friend/wife/human. Oh! So you do understand what it’s like to have two young children! Oh, so you can relate to my sleep-deprived, coffee-saturated, mommy brain? And really, you wonder about your sanity and growing senility too? Get out, the ideas of heaven and God baffle your mind as well? Great! Whew! What a relief! We are in on this life thing together, muddling on through, trying to figure things out. Words are necessary. We need to communicate.
Yet, I also feel that words get in the way. This post about reincarnation, the concept of heaven and the game of cricket gave me real food for thought. How do you describe God or heaven or love? What does it mean to you, what memories or thoughts come into your mind? I know what it means to me, I feel it deep in my bones and in my soul, but I struggle when I try to tell another person what I feel. I’m not sure it’s possible with words.
So I meditate. I breathe. I try to be that rock in the river. My thoughts come in and they go back out. They flow around me. I am not just a bunch of thoughts. Well, who is observing this, these meandering thoughts? That is the true me. The observer. And that “me” is you too. We can all connect on this level.
I’ve noticed that those moments when I am at peace all have one thing in common. I am not thinking. I am not judging. I am not worried or fearful. I can sometimes get to this place where I feel light and floating. All the words, labels and thoughts slip away. This happens to all of us, here and there; listening to music, watching rain fall, smelling the grass, holding your sleeping child. That place, that sense of peace. That is meditation. That is the moment we are alive and truly ourselves. We need more of this in our lives.
These days, our way of relating is through electronics. Internet, blogs, Facebook, texting. I see the benefits and downfalls of all of these. I feel as if we need to balance this constant flood of talk, talk, talk with actually experiencing things. Even better, experiencing things in that moment, together (anyone want to go skydiving with me?)
Maybe by connecting with each other and our experiences, we realize that we are all so much more alike than different. Then we can begin to see where we’re headed and where we came from. And all of us can get there together.
Please watch this video my friend of Life is a Journey…Not a Guided Tour sent me. It is a powerful and incredible story of a neuroscientist who suffered a stroke and lived to talk about what her experience of it was and how it changed her view of living. She talks about how we have the left brain, which constantly communicates to us with thoughts like, “Don’t forget to pick the kids up at school.” Or “We’re out of milk.” That side of the brain also identifies the self with limiting words like; I am Darla. I am a mom of two. I am 40. Then we have the right brain which is only in the present moment and taking things in with only our five senses as filters. We smell, touch, taste, hear and see energy in the world and receive it in its purer form, through our bodies and into our brain. On that side, the Self is simply Being; experiencing reality with no words. How do we connect these two minds? How do we bridge that gap? How can we balance them?
And the last question she asks, “Which side are you on? Which do you choose and when?” The more time we spend choosing the right side, the more peace we can send into the world.