Do you feel as though you are trying to find a door, or stuck in the doorway, or even a corridor? The joke goes: When one door closes, another opens, but man, these corridors are a bitch! Yet… how funny is the corridor feeling, right now? How long have you been in transition? For some of us, it feels as though we have been in a transformational process for our entire lives. Permanent, chronic transitionitis! For others, things were going along just fine until they weren’t, and now we’re trying to make some sense of radical losses, instability, chaos
What doorway am I talking about? For some, it’s just a vaguely-felt longing for something beyond the grind of daily struggle. For others, its that mysterious portal in reality that opened for you, that time you had your awakening experience, or your brief visit to enlightenment or Oneness or Godness. You know how you got there, more or less. Yet here you are again, anxious about things, about yourself, your money, health condition, relationships, trying to control your so-called life. In other words, it was a revolving door and it spat you back out into the anteroom. You may still be talking the enlightened talk, but you’re not yet walking the walk of truly feeling that freedom, joy and love that you knew on the other side.
Perhaps, to get back there, you keep trying the same formula over and overa spiritual practice, a lover or teacher, even a diet or a magic plantin hopes of getting back. But you can’t go back the same way, because the doorway has moved. The doorway is the doorway to Real Life, and life is fluid, like a river. “You can never step in the same river twice,” said Heraclitus, (one of the few Greek philosophers who was into Oneness rather than Twoness, and the dynamic fluid nature of things, rather than some idealized concept of stillness).
Can you relate to the feeling of trying to get through a doorway, a portal, into what feels like the other side of yourself? You may have read, or heard, or you may remember that THIS IS NOT ALL THERE IS. Life’s pains, losses and stresses, especially your own unmanageable mind and tendencies, may have brought you to your knees, and that is one way of knocking at the door. Success and getting what you thought you wanted can be stressful enough sometimes bring you to the doorway quite quickly. Fear, especially, can have you banging on the door, demanding to be freed from your mind.
I find myself in this doorway. I spend periods of opeaceful time in Oneness, yet learning to abide continuously in the experience of being-with-God is the work, for me. Or the non-work, non-doing… which is it? Parts of me are resisting their dissolution, like children having a mega-tantrum, and parts of me just feel like they just can’t quite feel it, be it, live it. But don’t worry, I’m not going to start talking about parts and having them talk to each other! Enough of that! There is only One they should be talking to!
So much has been written and spoken about all this. I’ve read and heard a lot of it. But I haven’t heard many offers of HOW––of truly skillful means to navigate through the waves––the tsunamis––of the human transformational process from duality into Oneness. In fact, I’ve heard many teachers scoff at students who are saying “But HOW…?” The teacher seems to be on the other side, and seems to be suggesting that you should “just GET it.” There is no way through, apparently, except to sit and listen to the teacher say that there is no way through…
Or they will say, “There is no door, there is no separation, it’s all right here, just be here now or realize what I am realizing. Don’t you get it?”
Well, no! And having been a teacher for a long time I know how easy it is, especially while teaching, to become drunk on the wisdom that life is flowing through you, yet still not quite integrate it all into an embodied, ongoing experience of… well, in the interests of economy, I think I’ll call it Oneness. What about that Monday morning loneliness after the weekend retreat?
I sat with a radiant teacher last night who kept emphasizing that there are no guarantees in life or on the spiritual path. Well, duh! Why do I need you to tell me this? I’m human and I need some help. I’m not asking for a guarantee, at least from you personally. But my human heart needs encouragement, and this feels battering. I told her this, in front of the class, in a friendly way.
To avoid this kind of spiritual sado-masochism, I offer this website and series of articles to help you find and catch a wave that you can surf through your own doorway. A doorwave.
Yes, ultimately you can’t make yourself melt into Oneness. It’s a movement of grace. But if grace is a bus, it’s really good to be at the bus stop. And if grace is a moving bus, it would be good to learn how to run and jump when it comes close. If grace is a moving wave, it would be good to learn a certain kind of surfing, so that when the Big One comes, it can take you all the way home.
Welcome to the Doorwave!