In the long low darkness of the void, while your brain chemistry adjusts to change, there is one last sacrifice to make. After setting aside your rituals, your be-all-end-all attentions and beliefs, you must now claim one final permission in order to connect with your authentic self: time.
And here’s where all the mindfulness meditation really pays off. The glory of the void is that without motivation or direction you are free to surrender to the purity of the present – as an observer rather than manager or negotiator. I believe that each breath is a life lived in and of itself. This meditative perception is experienced so much more acutely in the void because you can’t reach into the past (ritual) for comfort or into a future that has yet no map or meaning. Yes, exploring this concept – existing only as a description of time – is a decidedly separate and inhuman bliss, but one that can be savoured if you bring your system back to the surface of your skin and through mindfulness meditation learn to let go (if only temporarily) of so much of that blinding social/paradigm-dependent judgement bullshit. Sure, you’ve got other stuff to do – don’t we all! – but it’s in these carefully cultivated moments of emptiness that your authentic self suddenly finds it has space to come up for air.
I couldn’t take another step, couldn’t find a reason. And so I sat down right where I was, on a frozen cement stoop in front of a Calgary strip mall: pizza/ hot yoga/ flowers/ coffee – each shop a different desperate human reach. But I was done reaching. All my human handholds had become electrified (hence my need to make a change). And so I sat, huddled and directionless, in a despair of overwhelming physicality. This time I did not even try to fight it. The sun took pity and lay a warm and gentle hand on my back but I (no joke) sat there wishing I was cold so I’d at least have something real and tangible to push against. But I had to let that go.
The miracle of the void is that no one is watching over your shoulder. You’ve earned all your permissions and now you just have to relax into them. Let go, just watch, just be. Be time. You’ve done it a thousand times before – every orgasm, that third glass of wine, your next Netflix marathon (sweet sweet scourge of our age). Own the truth and cut out the middle man. Every submission beyond self is a glorious abandon to time. So dare to go manual. No risk because you’ve risked it all just by being brave enough to step into the void in the faint mad hope of connecting your survival to new sources of abundance (aka true change). You’ve built this space of cognitive freedom – so use it!
I let the sun heat my body and my eyes find a place to rest. But then I let that focus go too. I existed only as one breath after another, as time itself, each small pulse of life perfect in its completeness. Minutes passed, the world closed comfortably around my meditation and then, very slowly, I began to realize I had a partner in my surrender. As I brought my attention back to my senses I discovered I was literally watching ice melt. Just a little piece, jagged edges smoothing under the sun, tiny fingers drawing themselves across the stoop, quietly darkening the pavement. But every nuance of its journey became my own as I watched the crystals give up their rigid structures, born of atmospheric trauma, as the ice returned to its purest form.
Finally!! On that grey stoop, from out of the very depths of the void, I was hit with a motivation, a desire, a genuine new want!! Without conscious thought I picked up a bit of snow and molded a crude tool. I let my hand draw what it needed to – no, wanted to! A face appeared and with it tears in my own eyes (even writing this) because releasing myself into time had broken the spell. A new set of attentions had begun, in that moment, to assert themselves. What I had lost to human turbulence so many years ago was reawakened.
I am a scribe and I carry our stories in my bones. There are many languages and not all of them learned – I was born with more than most. I had lost myself by losing faith in what makes me special. My failings will always be monumental, but so what? I say screw fitting in! That ship has so sailed. Your authentic self already knows your purest path to abundance. You were designed for it! We spend so much time trying to moderate or sublimate what we coded to celebrate. Let go into time and trust the process. Take away fear and the void dissolves, melts into a pool around your ankles. Laugh, cry, and splash to the sky because this is victory, not over death, or even life, but the first guns blazing steps of a victory march onto the blank canvas of a storied life.
Did you miss…
Making a change? Welcome to the void!
Making a change? Why risk the void?
Making a change? The REAL reason to risk the void!
Making a change? The mindfulness key
Making a change? A warning from the void!
Making a change? Connecting with your universal self – Part 1
Making a change? Connecting with your universal self – Part 2
Making a change? Finding your authentic self