Saturday, April 14, 2012

True Transformation = Embracing the Void

“We can hear God speak to us when it is silent.”~ Movie Quote ("I Am Legend")

I’m driving to Death Valley tonight with my music artist, Ash Ruiz, for a desert sunrise photo shoot at 430am. 

Driving to Death Valley is powerfully symbolic for me as I’m in the chaotic throws of a deep transformational moment ... you could say the “shift is really hitting the fan!”

I’m in the midst of that kind of rare Transformation that grinds down deep into your cellular matrix and with brute force and no apology just rips your tired electrons out of their atomic orbits, injects each one with a bitter wheatgrass cocktail before tossing ‘em all up in the air like confetti, and then simply sits back and smiles smugly as each little bit of you slowly drifts back together to form some newly imagined being whose fundamental nature no longer resembles that which existed just moments prior. 

THAT is Transformation with an oversize capital “T”!!

Often this kind of deep Transformation gets kickstarted by Life abruptly reaching in and ripping away from us our prized beliefs, circumstances, people, etc. like a crazed hot bikini wax specialist on an uninvited sacred waxing mission! (I consulted my three sisters and two mothers for metaphors. This one won). And sometimes we finally get enough sense to do some wax ripping ourselves.

Either way, before a satisfying new reality has a chance to replace what’s been ripped away (and we’ll leave behind the bikini wax metaphor here, otherwise things will just get awkward), if we’re really in the midst of True Transformation, we are inevitably confronted with a period of nothingness. 


No-thing-ness is an experience during which our precious, fundamental truths about life, such as who we are, what we’re supposed to do, who we’re supposed to be with, how we’re supposed to be, etc. become unclear. We may not even be capable of imagining what could replace our current reality, currently crumbling at our feet. 

Genuine No-Thing-ness is a place in which our identity, the very basic idea of who we think we are, loses certainty and we find nothing rushing in to save us from this confounding void. (By the way, did you catch that? “No-thing” rushes in to fill the void ... Sit with it.)

However, this time of No-Thing-ness is a delicious and mostly misunderstood gift of True Transformation. For that moment, if we choose to see it, we get to directly experience our true nature as infinite beings of this wondrous Uni-verse. Rather than identifying ourselves by some set of circumstances or responsibilities, a job, a relationship, a religion, a name, for that moment of No-Thing-ness we get to be ... possibility, itself!!
Let me repeat that. In confronting “No-Thing-ness”, we get to experience our true nature as POSSIBILITY, ITSELF!! 

Yes, as creative engines made of Universal desire, we are every moment empowered to freshly invent ourselves and the world around us. We can create anything, imagine anything, dream anything ... BE anything.

We are literally Earth, come alive. Conscious stardust. We just usually live in ignorance of that. 

Transformation only serves to remind us. 

To truly reinvent ourselves and create new realities, we must let go our stories of the past. This is the invitation of No-Thing-ness. It’s frightening, I know. If I am NOT Bryan, the manager of this artist, or the boyfriend of that woman, or the guy that always has satisfying work to do, and who has a nice home, enough money and his shit together (and life is showing me that I’m not always ANY of those things) ... then who am I?

Often we rush to fill this odd No-Thing-ness with new partners, new jobs, new beliefs, new circumstances, which really only delays the opportunity for True Transformation. Simply witness how many mistakes you’ve sworn you learned from and would never repeat again, only to live them again soon after. ... Can I get an Amen!?!

There’s a great line in the Will Smith movie “I Am Legend”. Years after human civilization has ground to a halt and is near extinction, a woman says, “We can hear God speak to us when it is silent.”
In the quiet space of No-Thing-ness, when I’m not distracted by all the circumstances, relationships, responsibilities, and beliefs that I normally use to define myself, I see clearly that I’m just a brilliant child of and actually wanted by this Uni-verse!

How do I know the Uni-verse wants me? Because I’m here. It created me. Just as it created you.

I’m not exactly sure what this child of the Uni-verse is supposed to do next, however. As I wrote earlier, everything in my life is completely uncertain right now. It seems for this moment I’m just supposed to drive to Death Valley for a photo shoot.

I am encouraged by the Death Valley National Park website which says that “rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans ... a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.” It seems even Death Valley, despite its harsh, lonely, desperate conditions, offers powerful gifts of beauty and resilience.

So as my caterpillar body burns in this void of No-thing-ness, which like a black hole slowly devours past ideas of who I think I am or what I’m supposed to do, my Transformational journey continues undeterred towards the next brilliant Wonderland awaiting my butterfly spirit.

Have you experienced this place of No-Thing-ness? What have you discovered there?

1 comment:

  1. Yes, It is a powerful place of pain and purification. You captured it in a way that reminds me of my time in that elusive place that I have come to know as the source of wisdom and heart of poetry that I have named Miraculous Beauty. Robert Anton Wilson called it Chapel Perilous. Joseph Campbell called it the Mythological Dimension It is where the fires cast the shadows on the wall of the cave that we call reality. Keep burning.