...and the walls came tumbling down
Last night I had an episode that can only be decribed as life threatening. This was not life threatening in a real world way, but life threatening in an "other worldly" way. That description isn't really good enough to justify what I felt but it will do for the moment.
I was lying in bed reading when I felt something hit me in the chest, not very hard but something very unusual. It caught my attention and I stopped reading. I put out the light and started to observe it. The eposide increased in ferosity and duration until I was being repeatedly hit in the chest in what seemed to be a rythmical pattern, there was no pain, but rather a sense of impending death. Shivers ran up and down my spine that seemed to echo my thought.
It dawned on me that while it could be palpitations that may lead to a heart attack, I knew it was not. Some other explanation was beckoning. At this realisation I began to panic, I tried hard to remember what I had been taught to do in such situations. So I turned to my death and asked if I was going to die.
No answer was given. I asked again, feeling foolish and embarrased, again there was no answer. I took this to be a good omen and started to calm down. The episode continued at it's intensity level and I had the overwhelming feeling that I was being attacked. By what and from where I have no idea, but I couldn't relate my current health to this episode. I needed a sorcerers explanation.
The best way I thought to deal with this threat to my life was to relax and act as if nothing was happening. I meditated and the episode seemed to lessen, but as it lessened, I thought about it, and suddenly it got worse again. I again had thoughts flashing through my head that this thing was a precursor to a heart attack and I was going to die. I got out of bed and went to the bathroom, when done I stood in front of the bathroom mirror and looked at myself. The image I saw turned black and seemed to be dissapearing.
The edges of my arms where the only things that I could see, they had turned white. I looked at them for a while and I relised that I could control this "negative image" effect that I was seeing. The thought arose in me, was I Seeing? The blows to my chest continued and I tried hard to remember anything in my philosophy about this. I again thought that this might be a heart attack and the shivers returned, my eyes watered at the thought, I should get some asprin. I went downstairs and looked in the medicine box, there was no asprin to thin my blood and stop me dieing. I was going to have to do something though because this thing was going to kill me if I let it.
I returned to bed, and decided that my only option was to meditate and try to calm down, to relax my way out of this. I had a nagging feeling though, something like I was doing the wrong thing, that I should go with this feeling and follow it where it lead. Instead I fought it with my reason and relaxed through meditation until I was asleep.
I awoke this morning with no ill effects from this episode. I went to work as usual, although a little more tired than I would have liked. I began to read some Castaneda and came across a section on Tumblers; in The Fire From Within. When I read this it seemed to make a lot of sense, and seemed to relate what had happened the night before.
Tumblers it seems are like fireballs that hit you in the chest when your human shield is not functioning. This rang bells in my head and caused me to feel a little giddy with the anticipation of what I would read next. I continued at an accelerated pace:
The tumbler is a force from the Indescribable Force 's emanations. A ceaseless force that strikes us every instant of our lives. It is lethal when seen , but otherwise we are oblivious to it, in our ordinary lives, because we have protective shields. We have consuming interests that engage all our awareness. We are permanently worried about our station, our possessions. These shields, however, do not keep the tumbler away, they simply keep us from seeing it directly, protecting us in this way from getting hurt by the fright of seeing the balls of fire hitting us. Shields are a great help and a great hindrance to us. They pacify us and at the same time fool us. They give us a false sense of security. A moment will come in your life when you will be without any shields, uninterruptedly at the mercy of the tumbler. It is an obligatory stage in the life of a warrior known as losing the human form.
There are balls of fire that are of crucial
importance to human beings because they are the expression of a force
that pertains to all details of life and death, something that the new
seers called the rolling force. The rolling force is the means through
which the Indescribable Force distributes live and awareness for safekeeping.
But it also is the force that, let's say, collects the rent. It makes
all living beings die. The ancient seers describe the tumbler as an eternal
line of iridescent rings, or balls of fire, that roll onto living beings
Something is going to scare the living daylights out of you. Don't give up, because if you do, you'll die. Warriors live with death at their side, and from the knowledge that death is with them they draw the courage to face anything. The worst that could happen to us is that we have to die, and since that is already our unalterable fate, we are free; those who have lost everything no longer have anything to fear.
It would be easy retrospecively to say that I made this up having read the passage, I can't quite believe that this real but is this what happend to me last night? Did I loose my shield and face the tumblers? Will it happen to me again tonight? I don't particularly want it to, but what choice do I have, I must be impeccable and face it head on.