Ten Thousand Things Ablaze

Posted on September 14th, 2013

       I’m reading Aldous Huxley's, the Doors of Perception. In referencing his experiment with mescaline in the early 1950’s, he beckons, even in his drug-induced state, a deeper peering into the beauty befalling everything.
With this in mind, I embark upon the Arboretum’s paths for a morning hike. Huxley calls forth operatic metaphors, speaks of our entering heightened states of consciousness through meditation rather than mescaline or LSD.  We too, he guarantees, can observe the luminosity of all things with “constant and unstrained alertness.”
I attempt his dare; chanting my mantra, mesmerized by footfalls on the path, squirrels scolding--robins and chickadees, and nuthatches, throaty with song. Does walking meditation count? I don’t see a holographic universe when spying pine needles or verdant pointy-leafed ivy close up. Not even the sumptuous, blossoming, Magnolia tree cracks open electric. Even so, Huxley’s captures my attention and focuses me on present-moment-awareness. With practice something’s sure to go ablaze.

The Divine carouses in everything. What luminous, numinous experience will you create today? One moment of deep concentration and total focus might bring ten thousand things aglow. Peer into a puddle of water. Marvel at the shiny rocks aside the road. Sneak a determined peek at the moisture on your teacup, or your upper lip after sipping soup. According to Huxley, everything is alive with meaning and connectedness both animate and inanimate. He speaks of eternity in a flower and infinity in four legs of a chair. What a marvelous daily endeavor this luminosity seeking.


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