Buzz Lightyear was a toy in a movie – you may remember. He would jump off bed posts and railings trying to transcend his “toyness,” and the bounds of earth. Being in his little bubble he felt immune to the realities of an earthbound existence. With each attempt at transcendence he would crash back to earth with a resounding thud – get up, shake himself off and then be off on another path in another attempt at transcendence.
He had an idealized image of himself as an astronaut, a space walker. And he believed he had a special mission that was beyond the confines of earthly life. He based his misguided attempts at transcending this realm on the fiction of those perceptions of himself.
I’m going to take poetic license here and add to the story: One day, on one of his launches, he suddenly found himself floating in a field of stars in outer space. It was incredibly still there, peaceful, no sound – just – nothing - but stars and the sounds of silence. He couldn’t believe it. Amazing he thought. So this is it. I’ve finally done it. I’ve transcended earth. I must be in Divine territory, he thought, finally attaining enlightenment. He had catapulted way, way out into spaciousness. But then, just as suddenly, he found himself back on the earth plane again. Grounded by gravity he became depressed. He wanted to go back to the stars. He wanted that experience again. It seemed his “transcendent experience” hadn’t changed the fact that he was a toy.
Many years ago I used to have the words “To Infinity and Beyond” as a computer screen saver – moving back and forth, up and down across the screen with stars in the background – to remind me why I was really here: to transcend my humanness – or so I thought. My search for ways to transcend into Infinity was serious business for me. I wore a mask, a bubble face-shield of “spirituality” – hiding behind and within its comforting certainties. But like Buzz Lightyear I kept falling off railings and bedposts every time I tried to transcend the ego in order to “become enlightened.”
Buzz had to accept that he was a toy. He had to accept himself completely as he was – the whole package. He had to quit trying to transcend, and then he could “fly,” with the help of a rocket on his back and his friend Woody of course, another toy who knew he was a toy and was okay with that.
At one time I believed that if I could just transcend my self, my ego, step into the Light and ride with the stars, that my ego-self would go away – that I could spiritually bypass the anxiety, the anger, the depression – the shadow self; that it would all dissolve if I could just “get there” – where ever “there” was. And I did believe there was a “there” to get to, instead of a right here, right now space to be in. (see The Lure of Enlightenment)
I had to learn to embrace my humanness, and my life experience. I had to accept my-*self* as I was, in each moment. I had to let go of trying to transcend it and just Be. Like the mind, like the heart, like breathing, it all has a function. Everything is in service to Being/Consciousness. The sages say as you become more rooted and grounded in Being, the ego becomes more transparent, allowing Beingness to shine through – but it doesn’t “go away.” They say that as you transition into and identify with the Consciousness of Being, rather than identify with the face plate, the ego is then seen through as being just that: a mask, a persona, a wave of the greater Ocean, a radar device of Being. It no longer is seen as a separate entity to overcome or get rid of. *Everything* is seen as one Consciousness – One Life living *as* the many. You just are as you are. You just Be.
I lose perspective on occasion. I start believing in a separate self again that has to “get” something or somewhere. When that happens I find myself thinking of the lyrics from R Kelly’s song and think of my buddy Buzz:
“I believe I can fly, I believe I can touch the sky, I think about it every night and day, spread my wings and fly away…” sigh…
When I get caught in the dream again I have to come back to Earth, to *seeing* the truth of Reality, and put Buzz back on the shelf...
Heart Smiles, MeANderi
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