I sing the body electric
One of the most awe inspiring scientific facts I have learned is that the matter of our human bodies comes from stars. Talk about connectivity and belonging to something greater than ourselves… our prakriti is astral! As stars get old, they become unstable. They collapse and then explode out, unleashing all of their star “stuff” into the universe. That stuff gets absorbed and becomes what our planet is made of- what we are made of.
My dad passed away last week. In the last few years I’ve had the honor of officiating four weddings. Never in my life did I think I would be tasked with officiating his funeral. It is the hardest most beautiful thing I have ever had the honor of doing.
The most surprising thing for me throughout the whole process of his death is that somehow, over time, I had fallen into the fallacy of believing that we were independent organisms. Related, but independent. Meaning that he was himself and I was myself. Yes, I learned things from him via nurture, from seeing and integrating them into my life. And of course there was the stuff handed down from him through the original blueprint of my DNA. But in my mind my purusa (essence) was not that affected by him. I was who I was.
My experience this week, however, shocked me. I have felt the lateral transfer of information, or wisdom or even soul.
When I first walked into my parents’ apartment, I felt him. Everywhere. Almost as if he was hugging me energetically. I still feel that, a week later.
We know that energy does not leave. It merely transforms into something different. As the week transpired with family and all the rituals that death brings to one’s door, my spirit began to remember that spirit energy is not unlike matter. My sense is that the same thing that happens to stars, happened to his jiva atma, it exploded out into space and we, being there, absorbed some of those qualities- some of him. It was so striking. Through the week I saw people doing things that were so him. Things I had never seen in them. Had they been there all along? Or had something changed inside us?
People sometimes will say, I’m turning into my father or mother. I had always thought the implication there was that it was a habit or seed that had grown into something bigger. Not that it was an energy, like a chemical reaction that could actually change you in a deep way from one moment to the next.
As I watched our family move through this difficult time, I kept seeing distinct traits of my father’s that I had never noticed coming into full bloom in myself. I felt so overwhelmed to find I was carrying some of his nobility without even knowing it. It almost felt like he no longer needed to be here in physical form because I was him. Maybe the space was finally there. Maybe some form of dormant DNA lit up, suddenly. Or maybe the collision turned me a little more him because we were always ourselves connected by something bigger. Maybe he is the ahankara in me. The glue that keeps me together.
People ask me how I feel. The honest answer is- I don’t know. I feel clearer than I ever have. I feel awake. More awake than I’ve ever felt. I feel strong and oddly steady. I feel grown up. Part of me is also deeply heartbroken. And feels completely at bay and lost. Like I don’t know myself or who I am. As if the root of my very own identity has been covered by earth. But I know this second set of feelings has more to do with this huge change. I feel him so alive and thriving inside of me. The deepest part of me is alright.
We practice these beautiful philosophies on our mat. Occasionally we get the chance to put them to good use and experience their profundity first hand. Death is such a time. For all involved. My experience this week has left me uplifted, positive and very grateful for the wisdom inside our hearts and these traditions. I also feel endlessly grateful for all of you and your presence in my life. I have received all of your notes, calls, prayers, songs and everything else and have been so moved by your kindness. Thank you.
The gang (Doyal, Caroline and I) is getting back together on January 5 from 7 to 9 for Kirtan at Pure East. Come. Let´s lift our vibration together. To register click here. All are welcome, members and non alike. I will be away till then and will be very excited to see you by the time I am back. If you miss me, check out my classes on Vimeo. There are a ton to choose from.
I feel insane saying this at this time, but I have a deep sense that this coming year is going to be the best one yet. I’m cancelling Nuqui because my gut is telling me it´s the right thing to do. I think I will need the time. We’ll get back to it next year. I’m going to ride this clarity to see how it manifests. I’m also going to take really good care of myself till I see you next. We will see what comes of it on the other side. For now, happy holidays everyone! May you shine bright. Love your people while you can!!!
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