First- a dream:
I am rushing to finish getting everything together to leave on a long journey. I buy my ticket, but then I have to run off and give something away, and buy something else. By the time I get back to the bus station, everything is already moving, and so I flag down the driver at the last possible moment before he exits for the open road. Totally out of breath, as we pick up speed, I settle into my seat, and ask if this is the bus to New York City. New York City? the driver says, We're going to Berne. I burst out laughing. Such a relief! Nothing is what I thought, and here we all are, going to burn/Berne.
Second - a terrible painting at the Baltimore Farmers Market:
The painting looks, honestly, like a hemorrhoidal anus in outer space. I think it is supposed to be a rose, but it's weirdly fleshy. I find its bold ineptitude riveting. Later, during my second JHMI psilocybin session, this image comes to visit again, and this time I see it as the raw nub of embodiment - the core of me that has longed over lifetimes to incarnate & surrender fully, and is also horrified at the idea of being completely tender and open in this world.
Third - a fleeting sense at the end of the same psilocybin session:
I am sitting in meditation, completely grounded in the body, breathing deeply through the whole body. Gently, I become aware of soft, undulating, meringue-like waves extending all around me.
Fourth - while I have not consciously been looking for it, I've been taking in some pretty insistent reading/listening on the subject of full embodiment:
John Tarrant's The Light Inside the Dark
Judith Blacktone's Belonging Here
Sera Beak's Red Hot and Holy
Fifth - music
Leaving Roanoke, I set my iPod to play a novel, but it knows better. Instead, the whole road is Leonard Cohen, Jacques Brel, Natalie Merchant's Motherland, Boubacar Traore, Bulgarian women, Bhagavan Das singing his love songs to Kali, Gillian Welch, Robyn Hitchcock, Gangstagrass, Tabla Beat Science, Otis Redding, Tuvan shamans, Swiss yodelers, and Maria Tanase. It is duende & blues, deep bass, drums, and animal calls. It is, random song by random song, exactly what this heart and body need. I weave my way to Knoxville through increasingly maddened traffic, from cold rain to 82 sunny degrees, 250 miles in the embrace of a sung tradition of deliciousness in the body.
So it's unavoidable & official: after years and lifetimes of austerity, hardship, and avoidance, I am being urgently invited to live more deliciously.
Julie Püttgen is an artist, expressive arts therapist, and meditation teacher.
108 Names of Now