As my Experience of Being has unfolded
Over what is quickly becoming a long life,
The mind has dragged me into the “villages” of the Great Traditions
In search of those things it so desperately cherishes;
Knowledge, understanding, and guidance.
For it is utterly confounded by what happened
When I “died”, when I and the world vanished,
When subject and object vanished,
When absolutely everything vanished,
And only Unalloyed Ecstasy remained.
I frown… troubled…
For the word “Ecstasy” can never hope to express,
The Experience, not the place,
There are no metaphors in manifest experience.
Poor mind is utterly confounded, as well,
By the Sun of Bliss that shone thereafter in the locus of the Heart,
Effortlessly ever-present, here in manifest form,
In this world of time, space, and all that appears;
A Wellspring from which the waters of that Ocean of Formless Ecstasy
Flows into manifest experience.
What do I call that death unto Life;
How can I interpret, understand, or explain,
To myself, much less anyone else?
And what is this Blissful Radiance of the Heart that remains;
Perfection shining within this wounded and broken vessel.
In the village of each Tradition,
The mind has run like a starving vagrant
To the temples of knowledge,
Has sat with the “enlightened” ones,
Gorging voraciously on interpretations and descriptions,
Grasping desperately at understanding…
While the Heart reveled in Bliss,
Sipping Amrita at the Tavern of the Beloved.
And in time, in the village of each tradition,
The mind has arrived at the Tavern door,
Exhausted, and ignorant as ever,
And, joining the Heart at the bar,
Has sobbed to all who would listen,
Its tale of woe.
And in time, again and again,
The two staggering drunkards push open the village gate,
And wander out;
The Heart into Ineffable Sublimity,
Into the crushing immensity of The Great Mystery.