For the last few weeks, the theta state has been elusive. I’ve managed to inhabit it sporadically but not for any sustained periods; instead, I’ve drifted in and out of various narratives in the tank.
Here are a few:
The words of a poem I read in high school came back to me. I was called upon to read it out loud to the class, and it ended with “Again I saw, again I heard–and yielded myself to the perfect whole.“ This didn’t make sense to me when I was 15, but the words stayed with me, and from time to time I have pondered them. Now I realize that the perfect whole is the universe in its totality, which is vast beyond our comprehension but finite–it expands at the speed of light, which means it hasn’t reached infinity yet, and never will. But yielding oneself to it means releasing one’s ego and seeing ourselves as a pinpoint contained within the vastness.
You are not your thoughts. Your thoughts are like a herd of galloping horses. The best thing you can do when dealing with this herd is to direct them to work for you instead of running amuck. Otherwise, you become a prisoner of your own thoughts and they can bind you tightly, even causing injury. They become stuck so fast that even though they’re painful, they almost become a part of you and your life. (At this point I saw barbed wire encircling a person’s flesh, digging in so deep there seemed no hope of pulling it out.)
I felt both infinitesimally small and infinitely large; I felt the brevity of the moment and the expansiveness of eternity. I suddenly understood how the tank sheds light on one’s essential self–it makes us remember what it’s like to be divested of one’s shell. One returns to the place of infinite mystery and wisdom, without wondering what the mystery is or how to solve it.
Love the darkness within yourself; strive to love the light a little more.