©Parker Stafford

The mystique of enlightenment tantalizes us with promises of a new world, a new mind, a new way to be. I sought, never really knowing where it might all lead to. Perhaps what the mystics and yogis had said, had whispered about, was an inaccessible realm for only the chosen few. What I know now, though, is I had forgotten what had graced my spirit upon coming into the world.

It remains a mystery to me why it took as long as it did. Was it just that I had some very real-world lessons to learn first? Did the mundane trump the transcendent? While there have been answers, questions crowd them out in greater number than ever before. It’s as if in seeing the “iridjuel,” a transcendental object existing at the end of time only serves to deepen the mystery. That may just be the point and the way of things. For myself, I am surprisingly more content now with the motley crowding-in of questions over answers. It is a bit like how poetry is. It never seems to give you a solid answer, it teases you along with still-greater possibilities, a greater inescapable reality. Like poetry, maybe the whole point is to be inspired and not answered. Perhaps it is better to have an experience over answers. And yet, along the way, answers do come, but they come about through a very different process than before. These answers, though, lead to a more informed kind of mind and heart filled with greater humanity and kindness, perhaps a sensitivity that appeals to the Shakti in each of us. Fiery, alive, but gentle and sensitive to the needs of the All.

What is so interesting is how we all come to these in our own way. I’m not suggesting that it is the same, though. Many paths, many arrivals. The moment that I think that there is a hard and fast answer, a path that is clear, I see so many other paths that weave in and out of my own and down into parts of the forest that I had never considered before. What is clear though is I can see how there was a single substantive move from the laser-focus of the logical rational mind to that of another which was its opposite which led me to this shore and the end of time which is like Terence McKenna’s “iridjuel,” the transcendental object at the end of time.

Was it just as simple as activating the power of the more feminine side of our brain, that right hemisphere? So much of what I saw happening in meditation when the lights came on was about this shift. If it weren’t for how the meditation technique was designed, I might have missed it. It appeared first like a giant empty room. I had been there countless times before. I might have dismissed it that time, passed it by and gone on to more active pursuits. But I stayed. I gave it time. Instead of a focus, it was the opposite of what I knew was that laser-like focus which we all had grown accustomed to and comfortable with. It was a focus, but without the usual sense of focusing. It is, in short, precisely what the non-dual crowd calls “not doing.” It was the opposite of “the doer.” It was observing but it was not aware in the same way. It was as if my mind had been switched off and a giant seemingly endless expanse opened up. This I think is what so many call the “void” and many back away from it both in fear and unknowing. It was in that darkness that the brightest of pure white light flashed before me, subsumed me for just a moment before receding, after which everything began to change. You could say it was my “journey to Damascus” moment.

I stuck with this new form of observation without a single-point because I found it novel, a new challenge to my mind. Curiosity had the best of me. And maybe I had tried so many different ways before this that I kind of shrugged and thought, what’s the harm? It wasn’t that this void was really empty. In it phenomena would rise and fall based on how well I didn’t drag into it my old focus, that old comfortable and certain laser focus. It invited me to open, open, and open still more. The more I did, the more it would show me. I considered the possibility that the void was perhaps just a gulf between two selves, one of which was incomprehensible to the other. If the other side to this new form of “focus” was apprehending, then this was a very different acquisition altogether. I didn’t catch a bird, I observed it through its very essence, whatever the object of my interest was. A window opened in my forehead and I saw images from a great distance. A hallway, an apartment, the windows, the arrangement of the furniture, the bedrooms and other things. I was lucky, I knew the person to whom these scenes belonged….I just didn’t know it at the time. Coincidence or synchronicity saw to it that its import was made known to me and I was placed on that person’s path. I was able to see that for as fantastical all of this was, for as seemingly self-created it could appear, what that window revealed was in fact images from a world away. I corresponded with the person to whom these images belonged, who was able to tell me how correct or true those images were. It was as if I had caught onto something that had been hidden in a seeming void, images shelved behind darkness that might never have been found had I remained incurious and remaining in my old ways. It all seemed impossible, and yet there it was. Over and over I tested this seeming novel capacity, always with a high degree of accurate results. If this was mere imagination, there should have been results that reflected that reality and I would have seen more misses than bullseyes. Somehow, it was as if my mind could imagine what wasn’t there before and could show me what did exist through some unknown capacity opening up within me. And surely this is what happens when we open our minds in this way. Psychics often describe how they seem to lack the filter that keeps such access to this phenomenon at bay. While it isn’t that important to have these experiences, it nonetheless is a symptom, a sign, of the change that is taking place. It turns out that this is a universal symptom regardless of your religious belief or school of thought. The Christians have it as “gifts of the spirit” and the Hindu have it as “siddhi.” They all come from the same precise phenomenon but go by different names.

If the old way of being was achieved by way of a linear progression and its laser focus, then this was a compliment to it. It emerged seemingly as if it was a divine compliment, for surely it was just that. It looked and smelled and felt like the simplest of tricks, a simple key in the lock that turned the tumblers of time and everything else with it. Yet, holding a key or grasping a lock alone would lead to nothing. The world remained as it was; as appearances only. Both were impotent apart, but both were suddenly potent when brought together. Together they opened up secrets, the unknowable, the impossible, and yes it all seemed like a fantasy at first until I found that no, these were very real things that I was seeing. I didn’t see them from the outside, but rather I felt them from the inside out. Everything was in reverse. I considered that I was sick, perhaps suffering from some brain malfunction for about two weeks, that is, until I realized that no, there was a basis for what appeared completely implausable. This is perhaps why the concept of union over-arches this experience in all of its forms. Left brain and right brain, always out of sync, always putting out different frequencies, now line up and are on the same page. They then create a third mind, a meta mind, which then opens its window into the world beyond the senses. Like a ladder adding to itself, it leads us into a new way and a new world within ourselves. It is apt calling one side the masculine and the other the feminine, for that is surely how they seem. The one caveat is that regardless of whether you are male of female, we all have the same two present in us. Like the rails of a ladder, when we bring them together with the rungs, we are able to climb up into the transcendent, into what science says isn’t possible. It was in the practices of shifting into the other lost rail of the ladder of our mind that I found the way upward. But just as it showed me the way upward it also showed me that it also goes downward and into the realm of shadow where if we release those old ghosts of our fear, we can continue higher with fearlessness and wonder.

It has helped to show how all people matter, how it is that different turns of mind are important as we reach the end of time and its realm of appearances. It always seemed as simple as hitting a whole new gear. We just didn’t know that this gear even existed. So simple, so broad in its implications.

I began to see how, through time, just as we had subsumed the inner Shakti within ourselves, so too did we subsume the Shakti’s in the world. As above, so below. Was it ordained that it be this way? Or was it just inevitable given how we had limited ourselves? More, every once in a great while there would come some person who was a teacher who would pass on something that would yield a brief period, a kind of renaissance of spirit, whose words would fill a scroll or book and we would be left scratching our heads wondering what or how they got to where they were. Like a tide, knowing would come flowing in and then after a time, it would flow out, seemingly lost to human comprehension and the limits it had placed on itself. Always a teacher to light that fire, fanning the flames as best as he or she could. Over and over, we would fall back into forgetting. Not all of them would, but the most worldly of them had an amazingly short half life.

That is why this time seems a completely different iteration of past events. Waking up as we have, without a teacher or any knowledge of the secret practices of yogis or mystics, perhaps millions may have already reached this further shore. Will it make this iteration different? Will it last? Is it a new wrinkle whose very presence will change the pattern for all time, or will it be just another tidal phenomenon, subject to the larger forces present in our cosmos and thus our own bodies?

While the left brain says “Aha!” It is the right brain that brings the myths which tell truths that facts cannot. So Shakti dances in a wreath of fire and beckons us to her mystery. Perhaps this time we can see the two impulses as not mutually exclusive, but capable, when brought together, or forming a window into a larger understanding of what those two sides represent when brought into union. It is why I think that both, set apart, will only offer up what they think they know instead of a larger view of what is. It seems nature has a proclivity toward having us learn how to cooperate between our disparate inner nature if we are to reach the prize. And what is this prize? Is it a definite object that we can know in a concrete way, or is it instead both mystery and known quantity that mystifies as much as it informs? Is it the gift that reveals how important it is to see both sides of things, which pulls us along in our curious journey to discover what has not previously occurred to us? Is the answer as much how the meta mind is created as the object at the end of time is composed? And as such, will that object always defy our attempts at grasping it, but remain like a ball of wool, indistinct, random, but from which, with the pinch of our mind, can grasp a small part of its incomprehensible nature and spin it into a coherent thread? And will those threads always be just one small aspect of a still larger whole? I tend to think as much, but I also observe that anything that you might ever want to know can be found and teased out in just the way that I have described. This represents the exact opposite of how we are taught learning can take place….and yet the transcendental object at the end of time remains, enigmatic as ever, urging us forward into some new understanding of ourselves and the cosmos itself.

I might never have thought that this was possible had it not happened over and over to me. Had I been less prone to digging in and seeing how the fantastic seemingly self-imagined objects I saw behind closed eyes were, I might not have seen that they were supported through fact and independent experience. And it isn’t even that doing such a thing is that important, it is I think, a signpost along the way that we are now in new territory. It says: The Transcendental Object At the End of Time Up Ahead.

A hundred years hence what I have considered may itself be seen through the tunnel of time as only one small wrinkle in a still larger unfolding. And yet, still, I cannot help but grasp that bit of air with my mind and pinch with my intention to spin out threads of coherent thought and discovery from the object that seems surely to exist at the “end” of time.