Wednesday, September 2, 2009
I'm not sure if there is a word for it in English, but I would describe it as a combination of the Japanese Satori, a flash of sudden pure awareness and the Aboriginal Dreamtime.
It usually happens too the mundane on their way down the roller coaster, but for some of us it happens more often than that. I think "Why" is an age old argument of nature Vs nurture.
But it either way it happens to me a lot, body surfing the rapids of the Kaweah River, washing lettuce in the sink, riding my motorcycle or in prayer. There's a state of pure awareness, you feel everything all at once, you feel AT one with everything and it all seems like slow motion.
I think that's why people are so attracted to sports and other similar physical activities, there is a "Zen Zone" within it. But only if you can truly let go. Let go of the fear and just live completely in that one single moment. I was there today, for the first time in a while. It was nice to be back.
Part of my job as a state licensed administrator, requires continuing education classes to re-certify every two years. So I've been buzzing around racking up my forty hours on top of everything else. So my last few classes are in Fresno and I was running behind this morning, which is torture for someone as OCD as I am.
The commuter traffic really made me appreciate my live-in job as I ride white knuckled through traffic, taking every "advantage" of riding a motorcycle. Yeah, I'm "that guy" but only when I'm really late. But then everything started getting clearer, sharper and slower. The morning sun shined brightly on the chrome and I watched my shadow glide along beside me.
I thought about all the times I have been here in the moment, all the roads I've been on and all the shadows I have cast from helicopters, humvees, horses and now a Harley. I thought about the all those warriors of the past and my time in Iraq.
Among my collection of tattoos is a shoulder piece, three lines and some dots, (sorry but its symbolism is personal) but I came around that semi truck & trailer like a barrel racer on a tetherball. Curling my thumb and pinkie like a boy scout I drug three talons through the thick layer of dirt and exhaust that coated the side of the trailer leaving three bright white gashes nearly three feet long.
Once we Veterans are denied the Satori of War and the Dreamtime of a Warrior, all that's left is Counting Coup.