I think of an abyss as a deep cavern or the depths of the ocean, a deep, dark, cold, forbidding place. I feel a foreboding at that thought.
The depths of space strike me the same way.
Emotional abyss is a place of despondency, sense of loss, desolation.
The classical abyss, the philosophical/spiritual/mystical abyss, The Abyss as Primeval Source of Existence, this is different to me. I have always felt myself to be a part of the Oneness, the Universe. Beyond my very modest rational thought understanding of the quantum multiverse, I feel Oneness encompassing all existence and feel myself in that Oneness, all-connected, all-related.
I am a white-capped crest of a wave that is a miniscule part of the ocean of existence, but the word part is insufficient, for there exists no boundary, no threshold between the part that is me and the parts that I touch; we are one.
As a wave, I am in fact not a piece of water, but a pulse travelling through the water, rolling across the vast Pacific, leaving warm tropical waters behind as I move through colder waters to break on a distant shore. I then become a vibration in the rocks, in the sand, in the air, in the trees, and in a human sitting over a tide pool reading these words.
I breathe the air. Is the air I am about to inhale me? Is the air I just exhaled me? Is the air in the lungs me? Is the oxygen entering my bloodstream me? Is the carbon dioxide exiting my bloodstream me? Are the photons of sunlight entering my skin, my lens, cornea, iris, and retina me?
Where and when does the packet of pheromones and essence of lavender and flavor of pesto and rot of compost entering my nostrils become me? Where do the vibrations of my daughter’s voice and the rimshot of a snare drum and the whine of my dog and the purr of my cat become my body vibrations?
I feel the radiant heat of a bruised muscle a fraction of an inch from my hand as with laying on of hands I reduce the inflammation without skin-to-skin contact. I feel the pulse of a meridian as I gently press a fingertip into an acupressure point. I feel the chaotic, sickly energy of a migraine headache in my hands as I reposition a client’s neck and release the pressure of the vertebrae and release the tension in the neck muscles.
Where does my client end and I begin? If I take a non-attached view, what are the boundaries between my treatment table and my client and me and the rest of my treatment room? Everything here is a room’s worth of nuclei kept apart by orbiting electrons, electrons shared by nuclei in molecules, the molecules joined in communities that we identify as objects.
I feel the oil and sweat of my client’s skin on my fingertips, the heat of my client’s neck muscles in my hands, the flow of my client’s energy around my hands. I sense the room’s atmosphere, vibration, mood, tone, peace and agitation, dissipating tension, calming anxiety.
It’s the whole experience of wind and sound and damp at the ocean’s edge, of a roaring football stadium as one team comes together and another falls apart, of a hand on a swooping sculpture’s curve, of my mind’s eye and my heart and my body as I grok a Frankenthaler painting.
I feel this watching a spider spin her web, a flight of pelicans glide over the beach, a butterfly flutter, a dragonfly whoosh, a deer tiptoe, a coyote trot. I feel this in the redwood forest, glacier-carved granite cliffs, waterfalls, new-fallen snow. I feel this in love, in sex, in grief, in memoriam. I feel this in gratitude, in appreciation, in communication, in understanding.
I know this in my sum totality, this which I ignore in my separate parts. For those parts are inseparable, though they know not. As students in a class are inseparable, they are the class. As a family is separate as individuals, but interwoven as a family. As a community is an interdependent whole, intermeshed in myriad ways visible, apparent, and not.
I see you. I hear you. I feel you. Yet am I not merely sensing my greater self that includes us both and all that we are? We are one. We are one in this time and place, this experience in, through, and beyond time and place, alive with potential, alive with history, only here and now. And now. And now. So full. Vibrating, pulsating. Alive.