Eternity in a Moment and the Momentous Trees of Godalming
The night after the funeral of my brother, I sat up late talking to my younger sister Alexandra. “It’s only us now,” she smiled. There was a kind of awe in her voice, a sense of existential shock. If either of us had thought or sensed that one of us could soon also die, it would have been suspected as a symptom of grief. That look in her eyes, that ethereal sweetness as she said that, almost as if it were a question. That moment is for me eternal, as within three years, totally unexpectedly, she was struck by Meningitis and died within a day, leaving her young baby and new husband behind.
What is it that brings this eternity to some moments of our living experience?
When my kids were in England for the wedding, Alexandra took them for a walk through the trees of Godalming. This was the quiet place in nature where she would retreat with her dog Logan for those few years she had left of her own life – days which she never knew were so limited in number. She would go there to grieve and contemplate the passing of our brother.
Today, although Alexandra is gone, I can feel her – within those trees – almost within all trees – as if when we truly move into being awakened – conscious, aware and sharply for real – we break open a moment of eternity.
The trees of Godalming. That night, in her kitchen, after we said goodbye to Oliver. The first time I looked into the eyes of our newborn children. Standing in Jerusalem on a deserted street with the hallowing sounds of air-raid sirens during the Gulf War. Lying in bed as a two year old and witnessing the light play on the nylon white curtain while repeating “Georgi, Georgi, Georgi,” to myself and realizing the senselessness in a name. Timeless moments. Moments of eternity.
It is very hard for the mind to contain paradox. How can a moment be both immediately lost for ever and eternal? How can that make sense? Its logic would seem to be more quantum than human, so can a human live with the coexistence of time, timeless and eternity? Or perhaps, we should ask, can a human being exist without this coexistence?
1. The past does not exist. It is an unstable recreation of memory.
2. The future does not exist. It is an unstable projection of the imagination.
3. All that exists is now. This one moment. Or a series of moments held within a happening of cause and effect.
4. None of the structures of time exist without our existence – the one that we are – existing through eternity and perceiving it all, through the timeless and deeply impregnating time.
So what makes certain moments shine more bright than others? Why do certain happenings cut through our thoughts, feelings and flesh with a sword of eternity, while others are lost in a great dark sea of metaphorical sleep?
On this, the texts of I AM HERE – Opening the Windows to Life & Beauty are based.
When, for a moment, the veils and agendas of person-hood drop away, and we come into the existential now – allowing it to flood through the three windows of perception – consciousness (mind), awareness (feeling) and emptiness (physical incarnation), then we open a direct channel of eternity between the physical planet, the shared sentience of living beings, and the collective consciousness.
This channel is there for eternity, and is of direct service to the evolution of the whole.
The trees of Godalming, like all trees, are holding our hearts and our memory, our transformations and our existence. They hold Alexandra – all she was and all the beauty and magnificence of this mother that was here, and she who in one sense will always be here, contemplating eternity, within the soft and absorbing silence of the forest.