(c) 2008 Joan M. Newcomb
If you've ever been in a crises or an accident, you've notice how time seems to slow down, and things become very bright, crisp and clear. Simultaneously with the chaos, there will be this hyper-alert awareness. I believe it's an intense focus of Spirit that happens.
It's possible to experience that same sense of timelessness and clarity and high awareness without facing death or ruin. It can happen in states of meditation or spiritual practice, but I believe it's possible to experience it on an every day level as well.
Eckhart Tolle in "A New Earth" describes this as Presence. He suggests you bring your focus into the present moment (best experienced in nature but also possible whilst sitting in traffic).
I experience it as being my expanded Self, being connected to the Unseen, which is really who I AM.
I was walking my dogs the other day and practicing this awareness and it was quite fun. Everything came into sharp focus and seemed to communicate to me. I was aware of the aliveness of the trees and bushes, and their greens seemed particularly vibrant.
What would it be like to live this way all the time? I wondered. I suspect this is how life is for the likes of Eckhart Tolle and Byron Katie. Being in the Present Moment, being Presence in each moment, experiencing life as Presence.
When you are fully in the moment, there is no past to grieve over and no future to fear. In this very moment, all your needs are perfectly met, everything is okay.
I've had several periods like this in my life - one was fleeting, one lasted for nearly nine months and the most recent was only a few weeks. But the experience was of intense joy, being in love with God, in love with life, in love with myself (not necessarily in that order). Even though I had the same problems, I knew everything was going to be okay. Even though I had the same distractions, I was able to come back to center in the midst of them.
There's a not-exactly-fearlessness about living this way. Perhaps it's an absence of fear living this way. It's a complete Knowing that all is very, very well.
As I walked my dogs I had this sensation of leaning backwards, although it was more an energetic shift rather than a physical one. It was leaning back into the Unseen and allowing Its Support.
So I am going to try it. I am going, whenever I remember, to lean back into the Unseen, and be Present, and see what happens.