My life, like yours, is made up of a long string of moments. Most of them seem to escape my notice. Too often, I’m thinking about something else or dreaming about somewhere else. And that’s a great loss.
So what can I do about this? Right now I’m in Mai’s Café at a tiny table for two near the front door. I’ve written about this spot before – it’s just so cozy and cute. I’m looking out on the shops of Wortley Road and watching folks roam by on their feet and in their cars. Across the street, a young couple sit at a window table, looking at their menus. So those people are momentary in my life. Moments like this, when I’m alone, allow me to feel my environment, including the inner one. (My tummy is delightfully full of pad thai and banana fritter!) I can animate these solitary moments by shining a light on them, having them glow.
Even better are my times with other people. The same environmental noticing is available but there’s something extra. Last night I joined Louise and Jeff for supper at Chaucer’s Pub. It’s warm and dark and quiet. No big screen TVs showing me the wide world of sports (although I often enjoy such settings). My back was to the fireplace and the warmth toasted me all over.
We talked of life, of music, of adventures, of community. We talked of real people in our lives. We talked of them with appreciation and tenderness. Through all of this, we created a special time. But I knew there could be more. I’ve been studying the insights of Patricia Albere, about what’s possible when two or more people are together. With Patricia in mind, I looked at my new friends.
Jeff and Louise are good people. I could feel that. As I listened to them speak, I threw my consciousness inside each one, trying to feel them from within. And for a second or two, now and then … I did. It wasn’t me being with them. It was me being them. Oh. Completely different from other mealtime conversations I’ve had. “Goodness. Where does Bruce end and Louise begin?” I didn’t know. “Who is Jeff?” Somehow I was part of the answer.
Our shared words continued … but there was a shift. I was inside. What if I could create this majesty at will? What if another human being chose to join me in this experience of touching and being touched, of living inside each other? The words “Heaven on Earth” come to mind.
It appears that I’m not here and not now for a fair slice of my day. Nothing to get all grumpy about but I dream of what could be.
Time for a grand experiment, perhaps?