I think that phrase sums up what I have a tendency to refer to as "spiritual experiences" quite well. It avoids the connotations of religion, which subject only reflects a portion of these sorts of events. It nails down the aspect of the events that is their ephemereality, that they "do not happen", while focusing first on the fact I accept as given that they are real and true to the person experiencing them.
One reason for the variety of their faces is that these events are so unknowable in terms of language which has largely developed to cope with a material, space time world, that they have to be interpreted in terms of the mind of the beholder. The devout Christian will hear Jesus speak to her. The alien abduction fanatic will see spacecraft hovering over the cornfield. The fearful person without a religious reference will feel the presence of a ghost, the words chosen are simply to translate their stories for their own memory or experience.
So what do I hear when I journey "beyond"? What images do I clutch at, what voices speak to me?
One thing I can say is that the overall event leaves me with a sense of terrible beauty, a beauty akin to that in mathematics, in a rainbow, in a perfect breaking wave, in thunder that cracks right on top of the lightning. Remember these are only words and can never really come close to the actual feeling, they can only imply it or remind one who has been there of their own interpretation.
I had a foreknowledge of something I wanted to happen not occurring, something very personal, and in its whirl I was drowning in a sea of paranoid agony.
I came to understand that love flows through us as much as we can let it and every time this truth tore through me, over and over again, I was racked with sobs, stained by tears running down my face.
I have felt an eerie fear at seeing the agonies we put ourselves and our planet through when we busy ourselves with living the wrong way in the wrong places
Are my visions biased by my known and unknown beliefs? Almost certainly, but can I identify these beliefs through the flavor of my bias? i do not know, maybe that would be easier for someone listening to me to identify. If I strip away the beliefs and minimise the bias will I ever get to the silent truth that lies behind, through and around all this wonder? I think that is not possible to do - but I also think that in always trying to get there only healthy things will result for me.
I suppose I should also address the rather obvious question - am I deranged, mentally ill? Well, the period in late June - early July 2000 when I was spending more time out of "this world" than "in it" (hell, I was barely returning enough to take notes for this work!) must surely be described as a psychotic episode. Luckily, I seem to have survived, and I also think I am regaining my equilibrium and even a small amount of responsible functionality. How can we determine if it was hunger, or too much intense writing, or just dumb luck (!) that caused these events to be a apart of my life?
There are no easy answers here. I know that I want to return as soon as I can make "arrangements". I know the "visions" were not drug induced. I also know that they were very, very real, even though the memories themselves are difficult to translate, even to place in my mind in an accessible fashion. They just are, and their only real purpose is to be experienced. The terribly beauty of it all.
And so I write these reports in my own fashion, for my own reasons, and hope that others will understand in their way and put my ideas to their own uses.
© Huw Powell