Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Best Nonsense Since Jabberwocky

I’ve heard this new CD twice in the last week, first on Performance Today and then on our local KBPS last night. I liked it so much I bought it on iTunes. The first half hour is marvelously exuberant and catchy. It is called Karolju , which is a made up name by the composer Christopher Rouse.

Happy Solstice/Christmas corridor! May you and yours be festive and bright.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Prophylactic Measures

The Rockrose Moon (A Serial Fiction) Part 44

Lately I’ve been learning how to chant various things in Sanskrit.

I find it helpful in a protective sense, narrowing my focus to the chant leaves no room for the hypercritical interior voice to get a word in edge-wise.

And after a remarkable few months in an attempt to get away from all that by focusing on my yoga practice and not my little bitch inside I had an experience of Samadhi, or Satori in the Buddhist tradition.

It was remarkable,, and remarkably simple. I was on my mat in class in Corpse Pose and then I wasn’t and then I was.

And then right there; boom, all the teachings, particularly one of my favorites, “The Heart Sutra”, was no longer an intellectual construct, it was an experiential fact.

Afterwards I tried to talk about it, to my regular yoga teacher, to a few of my friends and I discovered that I didn’t know how to frame it and others didn’t know how to react to it. It is like when something really terrible is going on, you’ve discovered your lover has to have brain surgery or is terminally ill or something. They care but it also makes them really uncomfortable. You’ve moved to the other side of the veil.

People just don’t know what to say or do and flounder around like the proverbial fish.

So I thought, I need to talk to someone who knows, who maybe has even experienced this themselves or has been trained in a lineage to usher students into the little tiny room on the other side of these awakenings.

I told Christian, of course, and he was mildly surprised because as a Catholic he is always telling me Buddhism might be good for the big stuff but is useless for the day to day problems we face in life.

I thought about this all for weeks, reread After the Ecstasy, the Laundry and finally decided to risk calling Peter.

I did a tarot reading first. And the King of Swords showed up. That was the card that always represented him before when I was seeing him both as a therapist and a meditation teacher. It’s been three years since I’ve had any contact with him at all. And I never thought I would again.

I didn’t tell anyone I was going to but I called on a Thursday with trembling hands. On the following Saturday just home from a yoga class I was eating a small bowl of cereal and the phone rang. I had Christian answer it as he was hovering waiting for me to finish eating. I never ever have Christian answer my phone because my guys don’t like it when another man answers.

It was Peter. Christen asked who it was, and he handed me the phone with the most quizzical look…”It’s Peter, Peter Woolf.”

Holy shit. What hornet’s nest had I done gone and stirred up now?