This afternoon I suddenly realized that I had a couple of unplanned hours, and since my wife was off doing something with her mother, I also realized those hours would be uninterrupted (except maybe by cats). So I decided that I would try a full-out, lengthy meditation again – and apparently feeling in a masochistic mood, I thought I would try a precognitive meditation.
The precognitive part didn’t work out, which may be just as well, but the meditation did prove illuminating, as it were.
The first thing I decided to do was make sure that if I did see or hear anything, to know that I wasn’t asleep and dreaming at the time. I turned on the box fan at the foot of my bed; while that ran the risk of being a distraction, the background sound of the blades plus the feeling of the breeze on me would be a regular back-of-the-mind reminder that I was still awake.
Next I sent out a message, two parts which I spoke aloud: First, that I was aware my interest in precognitive meditation was still at least half fear-based, but I genuinely was interested in being warned if something was afoot, or to warn others in case it was something wider. Second, I said that if anyone who was good, who walked with the divine, who had my best interests at heart wanted to tell me something or pass along a message, I would be trying to listen – even though I wasn’t exactly sure I remembered how.
At first nothing happened.
After a few moments I got the image of snow-covered peaks that looked like the Rockies, or maybe the Alps, amid a pale winter haze. No context. Another image came of an elderly man who looked something like Thomas Edison only heavier and with frizzier hair, sitting alone in a dark featureless room. For awhile that’s all I got – apparently random images that seemed to have no connection whatsoever with one another.
But then something shifted. I can’t quite put my finger on what, but it was the awareness of being somewhere different, like how when you were a kid and your parents would be driving home, and you’d fall asleep in the back seat but wake up right before or as they were pulling into the driveway. I got the feeling that I’d reached the point of this particular meditation.
In the mental image that came to me there was a mirror – just your basic mirror, either free-standing or attached to a wall I couldn’t tell because there really wasn’t anything else around but the mirror. Next I was told without words that this mirror was one that could help show you your true self – by which I got the feeling that this meant the true spiritual self, what we are in our soul and consciousness.
In reverse, though. The mirror would show how the person saw themselves, while the person standing in front of it appeared as they truly are.
As an example, someone I know and care about but have suspected for a long while of being hard on themselves and thinking worse of themselves than they should appeared between the mirror and me. In the mirror they seemed plain, wan, rumpled – and mostly looking down, more at the floor than the mirror. And yet the true person in front of me was exactly as I see them: radiant, strong, nurturing, and glowing to the point of being dazzling, a metaphor for us really existing as beings of energy and light, with our physical bodies being only the smallest and visible part of us. The person in front of me, smiling and breathtakingly bright (literally and metaphorically), was a stark contrast to the muted person in the mirror.
There was someone else I wanted to bring in front of the mirror to see their true selves too, someone who I believe is is amazing and awesome and beautiful but has struggled for a long time with issues of being hard on and down on themselves. So I tried calling them. Nothing. I tried again, and felt resistance. I tried again and got a very strong response of I do not want to get in front of that mirror!
That startled me, then I felt frustrated. Why wouldn’t you want to see how bright and radiant your soul is?
My frustration was followed by a challenge from whatever source brought the image of the mirror to me: Why don’t you get in front of the mirror?
Then I was the one who was hesitating.
I didn’t get in front of it. I didn’t move. I was standing diagonally away from it so I couldn’t see myself at all. In fact I resisted the idea so strongly that my eyes flung open, and instead of trying to resume the meditation I spent the next moment doing nothing more than stroking the cat that was lounging on my chest.
I didn’t go back into the meditation. Instead I spent the next fifteen minutes or so staring off into space, wondering about my own reaction. Why wouldn’t I want to get a look at my true self compared to what I thought of myself? There was some lurking fear there, definitely. Maybe that I wouldn’t like what I see, or my “true self” would somehow be different, would confirm all the worst things about myself.
Which was the opposite of the point of the exercise, my logical mind knew. The point was to see yourself in spirit, the best of your total existence. The fear responded to this by thinking that who I am here and now might be a far cry from that spiritual self and I could never get close to my potential.
We spend a long time and put a lot of effort into constructing pictures of ourselves, whether those pictures are good or bad or a mix of both, and I suppose it will take more than one meditation session to make a dent in undoing that or getting through to something deeper. But this session, which lasted forty minutes (not including the staring off into space part), was illuminating, as I said above, and feels like a good first whack at that negative construction. Now I’ll just need to muster the discipline to try meditating again whenever the opportunity presents itself.