Connect the Dots

My normal M.O. isn’t to prattle on about spirituality, but I came across something last night that caught my attention.

I’ve been thumbing through a book titled We’re All Doing Time, written in the 90’s I think by a guy trying to help prisoners find spirituality. His emphasis is mostly eastern meditative practice, but he does a good job of arguing for – even insisting – the neutrality of spirituality and the idiocy of declaring one religion superior over another. It’s a pretty quick read but something to go back to often, like a manual on figuring out your crap in a constructed world that would rather you didn’t.

Last night, lying in bed reading this before sleep, I came across the statement “deeply connected to god within ourselves – fearing no one, feeling separate from no one.” If you’ve been paying any attention in your yoga class, or to the fliers hanging at the health food store, or even to the rambling madman yelling scripture in your city core, you would have come across this concept before, the idea that your chosen spiritual figurehead isn’t sitting on a throne somewhere apart from you, but is within you. We all contain divinity, the seeds of the universe, the brilliance of being, blah, blah, blah. Right? This is as common as the air we breath.

But last night when I read that statement something in me clicked. I reread it, continued on and then came back to it again and again. What was it this time, after hearing what is a pretty mundane idea over and over, that made me stop. I literally felt it in my stomach. I DO have something divine within me. I AM connected to whatever you want to call the fabric of being. This wasn’t an epiphany by any stretch, but it definitely got me thinking.

A couple weeks ago I was relating to my counselor friend how I’m often devastatingly upset when I spend time outside. The crystal perfection of nature hits me like a kick in the stomach. I’ve always reacted like this, and I’ve never been sure of why it happens. I speculated that against something so flawless, I felt so flawed. Separate and disconnected from what I figured was some kind of pure essence, as divine as anything I see. He listened intently, paused for reflection and said, “That kind of empathy doesn’t come from being apart, it comes from integration. I’d say you’re pretty f’g connected. If only you could figure out how to make a living out of it.” Smug.

It’s weird how things come around. I’m not sure yet what to do with this information, but I get the sense that there’s more to it than meets the eye. Maybe I’ll grow my hair and start wearing a sandwich board quoting the Dalai Lama, or more likely Slipknot.

There a lot of dots in our lives that are begging to have a line drawn between them. We just need to pay attention to see where they are.

And now here’s a picture of an Elk I took, looking at me like “Go ahead punk, get out of your truck!”

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