Here is a post I wrote a couple of months ago. Today I am revisiting my conclusions as to what I am about to share was. I'd love it if, from my description, you might be able to help me with understanding what this was and what to do with it.
I'd like to share my wild story and a dream of reality with you.
If you don't know me well, and even if you do, here's a basic summary of my life up to this point. I was raised by a single mother who had just lost my father, both of her parents, and ties to the rest of her family in just a few years around the time of my sister and my birth. With two children and the immense weight of her grief, we were pushed and pulled around by the winds of poverty and abuse. It wasn't easy, but we banded together and survived it. We weren't particularly religious, so Love got us through it. In my teens I was an atheist-secular-skeptic-scientific-materialist-type that battled with what would be diagnosed as Depression, Generalized Anxiety, PTSD, and OCD. Then there was a Romance that slowly helped me recover from so many blows over about 6 and a half years.
The next chapter of my life began not too long ago. A couple of years ago I had two hellish psychospiritual journeys sprinkled with a few small moments of bliss and insight. They spanned across about 6 months and ended with two vacations to the hospital. Everything I thought I knew about myself and the world was swiftly smashed to pieces and I was left with a great big pile to sort through and hopefully find some truth and ease in. The shards were often sharp. I started with therapy, which was helpful in the transition. Over time I realized I was essentially paying a guy to talk to myself, which was nice, but not really what I'm looking for. So, after a few months, once I felt I got what I could out of there, I moved into the world of spirituality and religion.
I started my spiritual journey with Buddhism, as I felt it might mesh with Secular beliefs at least to a moderate and helpful extent. I was struck by Buddhism while reading Siddhartha by Herman Hesse and was awe struck by the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu in High School. They were powerful, but I was too distracted to really look any deeper. At this point I still considered most of my pre-hospital experiences simply a major case of the willies. I still did my best to cling to those old ways of thinking, though it was a moderate grip at best. Fear made me suspicious of it, hope and dissatisfaction made me yearn for greener pastures and bluer skies. To my delightful surprise, although my intuition knew, its teachings rang true to my chaotic life's experiences. Over time, my studies expanded primarily into Hinduism, with a smattering of Taoism, Christianity, - to my teenage self's chagrin - and even a sprinkling of Islam. I even decided to make a pilgrimage to India with a wonderful friend.
Zen Koans knocked around in my brain until they whipped out my stupidity. Meditation brought me a pinch of peace, concentration and a view. Prayer and meditation brought me to my knees as I wept with gratitude, love, and release. Pure contemplation and self-reflection found secret knots in my being that practice could cut through. As I explored the depths, old, half-buried realizations reawakened; new and undiscovered gardens of sweet, fragrant insight burst forth; comically obvious gems of wisdom winked cheekily at me in the moonlight; mirror smooth, bottomless pools of peace reflected the brilliance of the sun's rays and wide open blue sky. Finally, as of this morning, I was transported by Seven Golden Buddhas to an endless realm of loving light where a chorus of innumerable beings sing an eternal crescendo of blissful transcendence, swinging chimes that twinkled as they performed Shiva's ecstatic dance throughout me with no notion of boundary.
To tell that final story, I'll use a couple of weeks ago as the beginning. My sister came down for Thanksgiving, and we haven't been able to spend much time together in these last several years. So I went back to her home with her to spend some quality time. Being around her, through no fault of her own, put me face to face with a great deal of unconfronted or not-confrunted-enough inner turmoil. As I worked through it, I actually ended up dealing with a lot of other seemingly unrelated inner knots. Finally, things began swiftly changing the other day, about Friday night. All of these knots started to come undone, one by one, and I was feeling lighter and happier, reinvigorated. I dove happily back into my practice, and experienced the best days of practice that I may have ever had. Last night I went to sleep feeling good, and decided to do a third-eye meditation until I fell asleep. It was the most intense that the practice has ever been, and I remember it lasted about 15 minutes. Next thing I know I'm dreaming.
The beginning of the dream is fuzzy. There was some woman in a frenzy, she was fighting off some kind of entities that she could see, I couldn't see the. She was running around calling out their names, giving their number, desribing them. I am watching this from above and I realize she was under some sort of spiritual attack. All of a sudden, a man's voice says something to the effect of , "there are Seven Golden Buddhas!" At this point there has been no mention of any religious ideas at all. At the mention of Buddhas, I suddenly become lucid and simply think, "Well, I want to see these Buddhas, perhaps I can see where they are." The next instant they are before me, sitting cross-legged in mid air. I see them, and before I know what's happening, my consciousness is forcefully yet painlessly reoriented, and blasts off in some unknown direction, as if I'd left my body. With a great WHOOSH, I am blown out like a candle.
Any internal commentary ends. No more thoughts. No more thinking about Sean or his friends and life or anything of this world. Like I'd forgotten everything I have ever known. Suddenly, I see a White Light that begins to encompass my vision, as if I'm entering into it. The Light is everywhere, endless, no surfaces reflecting it, brilliant beyond anything I have ever seen, yet somehow it is clear, almost crystalline but not solid. As it intensifies, I become aware of a rising swell of sound. It is the most beautiful and rapturous sound I have ever heard, like the final note to the best symphony the world has ever known, sung by the best choir the world has ever known, by the largest choir the world has ever known, blasting from everywhere all at once, no inside, no outside. I then notice there is also a twinkling of something, like the clapping hands of a vast crowd of crystalline angels. The whole while I am feeling this unimaginable ecstacy, total and complete satisfaction, a bliss beyond words. I recognize this, somehow know this. All I am IS this loving bliss of the Light.
In a similar manner to how the white light spread, at this recognition, a black dot spreads to encompass my vision and the sound goes away. All I see is the back of my eyelids, my body is vibrating with some buzzing energy. I almost consider going back to sleep before I realize the gravity of what just happened, and do my best to reconstruct as much of the dream as I can.
I take the eyemask off and rush to tell my sister, luckily she is awake. After I tell her what happened, I realize that I opened my eyes minutes before dawn, at 7 am. 7 Golden Buddhas awaken me at 7 to the dawning of a new day. Soon after, an intuition tells me to look up Buddhist holidays. December 8th, when everything turned around, was Bodh Gaya, the day of the Buddha's awakening.
If you had told me this was all going to happen two years ago, I would have laughed in your face. I was a college dropout with a GED who had just become a stoner, nothing ever seemed right. After I got out of the hospital, my first love and High School sweetheart left me and I had to rely on my mother shortly during recover, then I had to support her soon after. This very struggle is the fertile soil of this experience, no need to fret so much about the ever-shifting scenery. When the Light of Awareness is shone, even the seemingly ugliest of things sparkles like diamond. Many of us are Siddhartha still sitting in his palace, dining on fine foods, yet still feeling there's something missing. Others are in slums, despairing at their empty bellies. Both will equally change, don't cling too much to currnt circumstance. Venture forth. All of us can and will live as the great Sages of the past and future whose innumerability is more countless than the stars in a clear night's sky.
All the words I've used and shall ever use pale in comparison to the depth and power of this realization. See the moon, not the finger. Receive the unspeakable gift of God. Know the Tao that cannot be spoken. Turn from the Illusion, and journey to the Land of Truth. Know the indescribable, eternal, bliss-consciousness of Shiva.
Don't be content in your palace, don't wallow in your slum, assuming there's nothing better out there for you or that you're not worthy of It. No matter where you're from, no matter who you are, no matter what you've been through, all who read this will be delivered, as certainly as you take your next breath. No need to worry, no need to hope. You're already on the Path. Just take a step, and then the next. Utilize every second of this miraculous human existence.
With great Humility, Joy, and Gratitude, I want to extend the bottomless Love that dwells in my heart to You. To everyone who has ever known me, to everyone who has ever helped me, to everyone who has ever harmed me. To every rock that has supported me as I sat in contemplation. To every stoop that's sheltered me from the weather. To this Animate Earth that lovingly supports my feet as I walk the Path. To all the innumerable beings in all the innumerable realms. To every corner of creation forever and ever, I extend my deepest Self to you and call on You! Experience the Union of Shiva and Shakti! A new dawn approaches for you! Listen for and hear the Lion's Roar! Awaken! Awaken! Awaken!"
Why Seven Golden Buddhas? Does it matter which Buddhas they were? Where did I go? What next? Thank you!