“Then she got up, went behind the couch, and threw up.” See below.
This video reminds me so much of experiences I have had with souls who appear to others to be “not there,” or “barely there,” trapped inside their bodies. So much so that others speak of them in the third person when in their presence. And since others see them that way, they oblige, remain in hiding.
First, a dear friend of mine, Ella, who had only half emerged from a coma, and none thought she was still there; next, my own 93-year-old mother, who is coursing down the river of dementia.
Very long stories, both of them, and both seemingly miraculous.
With Ella, it involved me sitting with her for three days, before she said a word. Over those days, I could sense my awareness descending into a dark dark place, deeper and deeper, in order to meet her wherever she was hiding. And when Ella finally did “come to,” she addressed me directly, with these words, “I’ve got to straighten out my life!”
And with Mom: I had just arrived in Seattle, and she was acting like most very old people do, listless, shuffling and seemingly out-of-it. I decided to take her out to lunch. As the two of us drove to Bellevue from Mercer Island, suddenly, this question rushed up from inside me:
“Mom? What’s it like to be inside your mind?”
My question, said in all seriousness, generated a shock wave that reverberating through the air into the crumpled little body in the seat next to mine. I could feel her body start to fill with energy, straighten up. And then Mom responded, with extraordinary clarity and finality: “Empty.”
Empty! Her response floored me. Gratitude rushed up from within. I turned to her and said, ” Where you are is where I want to be. This is the aim of meditation. To let go of all thought, all memories, to simply be present in the moment.” Then, nearly overwhelmed with the generosity of her intimate gift, I added: “It is such an honor to be with you.”
From that time on, during our lunch date Mom was fully present and aware. Together, we laughed at her loss of memory. No big deal. And, at one point, she looked up from tiny sips of tomato soup and said, all of a piece: “I really appreciate being with you. Because you listen to me, and you respect me. I feel so many people talking behind my back.”
There is only one thing necessary for these kinds of seemingly extraordinary experiences with others to be possible: we need to fully recognize the distinction between persona and essence, personality and soul, or, as the saying goes nowadays: “each person is a spiritual being having a physical experience.”
As each of us sees, feels, and acts on that distinction, with everyone, in all ways, acknowledging and honoring both ourselves and every single person we meet as a soul — even and especially when that soul appears to be out of reach or in hiding or even gone — our world will heal in a heartbeat.
Now to the video. First, here are a few more choice morsels from this extraordinary display of the inner reality of one beautiful “autistic” child whose behavior had caused others to think her “retarded.”
“I want something to put out the fire.”
“We create output to block out input.”
“I take over a thousand pictures of faces when I look at them. That’s why I find it hard to look at people.”
“I wish for one day you could be in my body.”
“Don’t give up. Your inner voice will find its way out. Mine did.”