|In 2002, I became involved in a spiritual work called Waking Down in Mutuality (now renamed as Trillium Awakening). Briefly, this path helps us reach a stage of growth in which we find our conscious nature established in our bodies. This evolutionary stage, called the Second Birth, allows us to be conscious of our eternal nature at all times, even when it is very quiet or soft. Instead of our conscious nature seeming to hover above, behind, or away from us, we locate it deeply in our body.When we think that we may be experiencing this embodied awakening, we are encouraged to meet with a senior Waking Down teacher. I went to senior teacher Sandra Glickman, whom we are lucky to have living in our small town of Fairfield.As our meeting got underway, Sandra asked, “Who are you?”I thought for a moment in silence. “I am dual, both limitless and limited.”
“Tell me more,” she invited.
To describe my unlimited nature was not difficult. I had been meditating for over 30 years, and had come to be keenly aware of my expanded consciousness. “I am unbounded and eternal,” I responded. “At the base of my existence is fundamental non-separateness, fundamental wellness, seamlessness. There is an “is-ness” that I am always identified with. It transcends and stands apart from all relative change, and yet is the basis of all creation. I am that non-separate base of all relative existence, all fields of change. I am That.”
“Tell me about your limited nature,” Sandra coaxed.
That answer also seemed easy. I patted my thighs, “My limited nature is my body, ego, mind, intellect, emotions, and feelings.” Something whispered inside that there was more to my limited nature, but I wasn’t sure what that more was. As I paused to see what would arise, my gaze was fixed on hers. I sank deeply into her eyes. Words formed around a thought in a whisper. The thought was pure blasphemy, yet True. This Truth had to be spoken, and yet it seemed so unbelievable that I could only speak in a whisper.
“When speaking of my limited nature….”
I paused, tears welling in my eyes, choking back the words. Then I dared to speak the Truth so new and tender, “I am also you.”
“Say that again,” she insisted.
“I am also you.”
The tears flowed now. My body shook with this recognition. The denial that had separated me from that Truth was like a thin pane of glass. I had dared to crack it. Sandra’s fierceness—that aspect of her that reminded me of the Hindu deity, Kali—sprang into action.
Sandra’s words became like hammers (or maybe skulls) and shattered that pane of glass, already weakened. “This is the Second Birth! This is the Second Birth!” She showed no mercy. I was sobbing, hyperventilating, transfixed by her gaze. She continued to wield her hammers, “Nothing else you have spoken until this moment is the Second Birth. This is It!”
As the shards of glass separating me from this reality fell around me, I exploded like a supernova. Suddenly I found my limited nature simultaneously centered in all things. I was all things, physically, palpably, on all levels. It was awesome, unbelievable, yet True. Namaste took on a new meaning. My eternal nature bows to itself as found in all things, as found in you. I continued to shake, cry, and hyperventilate. I grounded myself in her gaze.
“Yes, yes.” Her voice softened, “This is who you are.” I started to relax into this expanded state.
I had often heard the expression, “holding the space” for someone going through a “process.” I needed someone as powerful as Sandra to hold what I was experiencing, as I integrated this new level of reality.
But then, after a short time, I realized that my unmanifest, limitless ground of Being could hold this realization that my Being also inhabits all finite reality.
I felt the exhaustion of both having just given birth and having just been born. I realized that the Second Birth was more than just consciousness landing in my body. It was an awesome knowing that I was also located in all manifest creation, simultaneously. I experienced complete non-separateness. End.
Thank you for reading my story. Please do not think I have somehow managed to avoid suffering in this life. I have had many challenges that have taken years for me to process and integrate. This day of awakening to my true and unlimited nature residing on all levels of life from finite to infinite—which I believe is your true nature, too—birthed in me a desire to integrate this knowing into my daily life. My goal is not to avoid life, this body, or the range of human experience, but in fact to live fully from and with embodied awareness of my true nature. I want to feel it constantly in the mix of my daily experience.
I know I can help you to do this too.