Today, I have been feeling an uncomfortable feeling all day. It is still there. Is it the feeling of something is missing? Is it the feeling of the empty space? I don’t know.
I think it is a mixture of things. Partly, due to having no routine for the last two days. Partly, due to not having meditation group today. Partly, due to not having contact with anyone (in real world). Partly, due to feeling there is nothing new in life – it is all just the same, everyday is the same!
It’s something I have just been aware of for most of today.
There’s definitely a sense in the air that people are pushing the lock-down boundaries. Numerous people have posted on Facebook feeds their observations over the last couple of days of people not following the lock-down. People hanging around in groups, not social distancing (and looking like they are not in the same household). People having Bar-BQs, unofficial parties, sunbathing, etc…Staff in supermarkets not keeping social distance from customers. The assumption that people are making that if you wear a mask you don’t need to keep social distance. etc….
Those posting this on their Facebook feeds seem really annoyed with those not sticking to it.
I’ve been seeing this too over the last few days and it does annoy me. I (and most other people) are sticking with everything. It’s not easy and yes, we are all getting frustrated and “lock-down fatigue”. But we are still sticking to it. When you see others not caring about it – it makes me feel “why should I continue to struggle if you are not?”.
I wonder, whether that is also why I am feeling like I have today.
It’s the same feeling that I had last weekend – like a pressure cooker building. Last Sunday I went for a long run to get it all out my system. Which worked. Today, I was hoping to do the same thing – but then that little voice in my head talked me out of it!
Honey the Dog and I went out for a walk on Arthur’s Seat today. It was still sunny, but not as warm as yesterday and a bit of a cool breeze. There were some amazing cloud formations.
I tried to go to the one area of Arthur’s Seat that we have not explored. The rich blue sea against the blue sky was stunning.
All week, I continue to listen Ram Dass on audible.
Back in the late 1990s, I used to listen to the same tape of Ram Dass called ‘Facing Death’. It’s a shocking title, but actually an amazing lecture (recorded in 1992) with a live audience – with lots of funny parts in it. I would highly recommend listening to it.
Sadly, I had it on tape, not CD or electronic, so am no longer able to listen to it. However, I have just found the full recording on YouTube! Which I will share below.
Back in the 2000’s I was really into exploring death and dying, through books, tapes, etc…there’s a funny story, about listening to that tape.
I was travelling from Scotland down to Southampton – a long 8 hours or maybe longer journey. I was listening to the tape on my walkman on the train, chuckling to myself, at times. I was also reading the book ‘Who Dies‘ by Stephen Levine. Knowing, the title was quite shocking, I had the book face-down on the table I was sitting at.
The tape had come to the end of the side, so I flipped it out and turned it over. This little old lady who was sitting opposite me on the train at the table, with her husband. With the pause on the tape, she said “What are you listening to their, son? Is it Billy Connolly?“. Now, knowing that most people did not get my interest in death and dying back then, I wasn’t sure whether to be honest or just agree with her. She was clearly, trying to strike up a conversation with me, to pass sometime on this long train journey.
I paused…hesitated…then decided to go for the honest answer. Who knows, it maybe an interest of hers too?! I said, “no it’s a guy called Ram Dass…it’s called Facing Death”. She looked a bit taken aback. I explained that I was really interested in exploring death and dying. I then said, I am also reading a book called ‘Who Dies’, I flipped the book over in front of me. She looked shocked! Stuttered a bit…but said nothing.
We continued on the journey, opposite each other for the next 6 hours and she never said another word to me!
I love the whole lecture, but there is one part that has been with me for the last few days, so I wanted to share it with you…Listening to it is a lot better….you can find it here – https://www.ramdass.org/ram-dass-on-facing-death
This part is at COUNTER – 31:25 – 34:36
He’s trying to explain how there are different levels of consciousness that we live on:
If you had a little television receiver right here next to your eyes, what we are talking about is planes of consciousness or channels on a television set. And most of us, most of the time, in this culture, act as we have a one or two channel set, we don’t have cable. And today we are talking about cable.
We are talking about acknowledging all these other channels that are floating around the room, but we are not picking them up because we don’t know how to tune our receiver. So that is basically what this is about.
So on the First Channel, when you look at another human being you see, old, young, dark, white, fat, thin, etc…you see physical body. And if you are obsessed with your physical body, then that’s what you see, when you look in the world. Other people’s physical bodies. That’s the channel you are on.
If you flip one channel, then you are in the psycho-social realm. You see power…You see happiness and sadness. And neurosis..and…it’s the Therapy Channel. It’s the social role channel. It’s where there are mothers and truck drivers and lawyers and all the roles and identities…all the social stuff. That’s all a channel…and it’s how the world turns…and it is a never ending source of fascination…it just goes on and on and on and on and on. Most people are happy with Channel Two.
With Channel One and Two, about 98% of the people you ever have known are busy with those channels all the time.
But now we are talking about something else, we are talking about shifting…
Now you shift one more channel and there is a little in between one, which is called the Astral Plane. It’s where you are dealing with archetypes, Jungian archetypes, you are dealing with what’s called astral or mythic roles and mythic identities. It’s that sort of place, where you see people in they mythos, rather than in their personality type. You look at me and say “he’s an Aries, I just knew it”. You know…it is the Sagittarius and Leos…and there are 12 of us.
If you flip to the next channel, you go behind all those individual differences and you just see another soul, just like you. That has all that packaging, that’s different from you, but is just another being, just like you. That’s when you say “are you in there? I’m here. How did you get in that one?”. And you see all of the stuff, of the personality and the astral and the mythic and the body and all of it as packaging. And you see the spiritual individual entity.
And just for fun if you turn the channel once more. What it is..is you’re looking..it’s looking at itself, looking at itself. Because there is only one of it. It’s awareness, aware of itself.
And just to keep the Buddhist happy you turn it once more and it all disappears. Which is, basically the one in itself….rather than looking at itself.
When I got introduced to this concept back in the last 1990s, I started to do loads of work on myself to try and live in Channel Three – where you see another individual person or soul, beyond all the packaging and personality. I spent about 3 years, doing daily meditation and practising opening and living in my heart.
I don’t live in that place as much these days, but I am aware that when I meet someone, I pick up a sense from them. The feeling that we all give out, that we don’t know we are doing – but others can sense it. For me, I try hangout with people who give out a feeling which I like – makes sense, because it is a nice feeling to be around / in. But, if for example, someone is really angry and are suppressing it, I can feel it, pick it up – and so probably choose to spend less time with them as I don’t like being around that feeling of anger.
What I realised today – that in lock-down, we see most people through a screen – Facebook Live, Zoom, social media chat, etc…so that feeling that we give out is not there. We see everyone on Channels One and Two. Channel Three is not there.
I THAT is what I am missing so much – probably the most in lock-down. The feeling I get being around other people – connecting with their ‘being’ and the feeling that they give out.
Does that makes sense?
Mark is a friend of my parents (he was Best Man at their wedding). He shared something on Facebook a couple of weeks ago. I couldn’t find it anywhere. So contacting him through Facebook Messenger, see if I could share it (I wasn’t sure if you he created it himself). He apologised for not using Facebook much, but said I could share it.
It’s a great wee video of ‘Quarantine through ART
My friend Kenny shared this with me today. There are lots of videos of this of ‘Animals Reclaiming the World’:
If you are a regular reader of my blog, you will know Fi lives on the Isle of Canna, so has some lovely views to take photos of. This evening she shared the photos and a video she took today and wrote about them all.
“It was a(norther) lazy couch day today. Watching sunset with the seagulls. Cliff shadows. Old settlement. Nothing but horizon. Westend with Barra in the distance. Relaxing at dusk. Pink to the east. Seals splashing around in the bay”.
It’s another Photo Gallery – so click on any to see the full picture.
Fi also shared this wee video –
As Quiz Master, Fi also shared a new quick, she says “it’s a toughy!”.
The Lockdown Acoustic Guitar Intros Quiz#
Answers to follow from the Quiz Master – on Day 36th!
It’s the end of the weekend and the end of my 34th Daily Blog! It seems like the second half of this blog is made up of YouTube videos! Maybe the perfect way to start your Monday morning?!
I am feeling a bit better since writing this – I wonder, whether getting my thoughts and feelings out into this blog has helped shift something in me?!
Hope you have all had a lovely weekend.