I’ve watched two climbing documentaries recently, Dawn Wall and Free Solo. Both set in Yosemite National Park on El Capitan in what may just be the most beautiful valley in the world. Meru is another I’ve seen over ten times, also filmed by Jimmy Chin who had a hand in Free Solo. I’m not a rock climber, but I’m drawn to these films by the strength of character of the people involved, and the raw exposure to the elements during days or weeks spent climbing the three thousand feet high granite wall. Alex Honnold, however, spent under four hours climbing El Capitan without a rope, or any safety equipment. The film still feels like a dream to me where I find myself thinking, ‘did I really just see that?’ Free Solo is about Alex’s quest to do something no other human has ever done. He achieved what’s been hailed as the greatest athletic feat of any kind. There’s no symmetry between what Alex did in Free Solo and what I’m trying to do with my writing, but films like that, Dawn Wall and Meru, only inspire or perhaps even reassure me that I’ve got to keep writing and exploring where the adventure my character is on, is heading. I understand the doubt in their minds about whether it’s really worth the time and effort to keep trying, but they kept on, and they triumphed.
These films also show Nature in all her majesty. Climbers are people who appreciate the outdoors, the views, they endure the risk, the elements and injuries for the opportunity to be one with Mother Nature, and I get that. They’re also about people looking for a place called the Edge where something can be achieved for the first time in history. When I heard that word, Edge, it brought back memories of the place I was at eleven or so years ago, teetering on the brink of self-inflicted extinction, but it also indicated where I’ve been recently.
With the Winter Solstice a few hours away, I’ve reflected on the last few months and how I’ve pushed myself, addict style, to the edge of exhaustion. I’m coming Out the other side of that, just in time for Christmas. Some of the trials of the last few weeks were intensified by an increase in my Transcendental Meditation and Siddhi programme. It just seemed like the right thing to do as the days got shorter, to go within, bear-like. Whenever time allows, if the inspiration to write has been missing, I’ll meditate, because creativity dwells there. It’s been interdimensional and enlightening as I’ve transcended to the edge of this dimension into others. Through my interactions with Nature’s energy field I’m frequently privy to fleeting supernatural drone footage of Canadian forest canopies and masses of English oak trees. I’ve flown down valleys, seen rain sprinkle the surface of a still pond and listened to a babbling brook. I’ve felt the power of a giant wave and the wind it generates, but it hasn’t always felt like I’ve been the viewer, it’s more that I am a part of whatever Nature I encounter. I’ve ended meditations with the distinct knowing that I’ve had conversations with people, strangers, yet unable to remember what we talked about. Twice I’ve seen a wall of mercury-like energy in front of me and a face peering through with a quizzical look on its face and unintentional psychic phenomena have been happening, more than usual.
These mystical experiences aren’t regular or predictable in any way and I feel they’re just embryonic, with much more to come. Expecting them to happen is just effort. TM should be effortless, I just wait for Nature to bring it forth. Deepening my TM programme feels the right thing to continue doing, something’s happening, something magical. While I’ve found these recent dark and tired days a challenge, they are now ending and the light is about to return. The Earth is due to start breathing out, rising up to meet the light, just as the full moon rises tomorrow evening. I’ll go with Nature’s flow as much as I can, after all, She knows best. Wishing you only light.