This is a question I get asked a lot.
Probably because I talk about the mystery a lot.
Considering how much I talk about the mystery it is significant how little I get asked.
People just get it.
Somewhere they know.
Having said that, here is my attempt at naming the unnameable.
There comes a point in consciousness beyond which there are no words or concepts or images to speak of.
I call it the mystery because I have no other word for it.
It is profound to the core yet as ordinary as bedtime.
Deep Dreamless Sleep
We all naturally go to the mystery every night in deep dreamless sleep.
We get into bed.
We close our eyes.
Our thoughts of the day begin to drift as we slip into the dream world.
Our car can fly. We can leap tall buildings. We can pass through walls.
Towards the bottom of the dream world, our dreams become extreme as we transition into the psychic world.
As we pass through the psychic world,
we can have premonitions, we can meet loved ones who have passed,
we can encounter fairies and demons.
And then we drop out the bottom of the psychic world into deep dreamless sleep.
Where there is nothing to speak of.
Everything we hold most dear is gone.
no loved ones,
no us as we know ourselves.
Describing deep dreamless sleep is similar to describing death or one possibility for what death might be like.
You would think that would make us apprehensive about sleep
yet we run to it.
We can’t wait to go to bed.
We can’t wait to go to sleep.
Which is another way of saying we can’t wait to not exist.
Because wherever it is we go in deep dreamless sleep, when we return from it we are refreshed.
Somewhere a deep part of us knows that where we go in deep dreamless sleep is good.
Where we go in deep dreamless sleep is the mystery.
Going to the mystery in sleep is a natural process and happens without conscious direction on our part.
In meditation, we go to the mystery but we do it consciously
It is like going into deep dreamless sleep while being wide awake.
In meditation, I enter the mystery with no agenda. I don’t ask questions. I don’t look for guidance. And yet the mystery informs me.
Packages of insight bubble up and arrive fully formed.
All dots joined at the same time.
Most of my deepest insights have come like this.
Meditation is the gateway that brings me to the mystery at the core of my being.
By consciously going into the mystery I bring it forward into my day to day life. The ordinariness of deep dreamless sleep, when approached in meditation becomes extraordinary and then is made ordinary once again as I recognise the mystery in the hundred and one things of everyday life.