the universe is music. everything sings its song, shaped from primal
essence & counterpointed by a sweetly unique sound signature,
unlike any other. we meet & combine our melodies into
vast dances & soaring flights of glad praise. each & every galaxy
is a grand ongoing concert of expressive communion. solar
systems join in with their own complimentary contributions, as
each planet adds its favorite riff to the cooperative mix.
with subtle inner focus, one can hear the combined glissandos of
multiple galactic groups. it's enough to strip the body away
& release the cramped spirit to rise in ecstatic jubilation
of woven sound! we phase in & out of quantum fluctuations like
drumbeats of emphasis nearing crescendo. we dissolve formlessly
in the whirling, stirring intergalactic sea of sound vibration.
let me put it this way. when i look out my window at the rising
golden sun this morning, i am pierced by the yearning of the sweetest
sound i have ever heard. it massages me inside & out, & leaves
me gasping with the fading glory of its echo. it is the song
of the Self of the sun, praising Shiva for its life & song, much as
i also do. i, too, find that i'm essentially music reaching
for a harmonic partner: for a grand interwoven chorus of
soaring harmony, sounding like a murmuration of starlings looks.
i dissolve into that wholeness & slowly, atom by atom, i
find my home at long last as the silence between sounds smooths & soothes.
this silence holds all sound in potential. everything, from galaxy
to human, eventually returns to this deep silence & leaves
the gift of its song as a testament to a shining life. Shiva
gathers up all our songs, cherishing them in perpetuity, &
He honors them for their holy origin & for our sacrifice
in the name of goodness, beauty & the fulfillment of our dharma.
that's the name that my final husband, bill, & i called our home to the
various friends, family & wanderers who came our way over
the years. we were the gates family, & we named our home "way station"
to indicate that it was a place to rest while on a long journey.
some came & left quickly, while others became a good part of our lives
for ages. all were teachers of various kinds, & we also shared
all that we could with them of positive world views & lessons we learned.
we included the planet "saturn" in our home name, for he is the
task master & way shower, the wise companion of our elderhood.
thrift & discipline as a way of life were acceptable to us:
we learned from everyone & everything, intending good will to all.
we named our home "space refinery" because we so cherished the deep
philosophical discussions & spiritual musings that we
often enjoyed with other people. we felt that we contributed
positively to the planetary noosphere in this small way.
for more than forty years bill & i held this vision dear to our hearts,
& manifested it in our lives. even here in this nursing home,
we held fast to a positive vision & ideal, glad that we were
able to remain at least under the same roof until death did part
us physically. we are still together in the space refinery
though, for it is nonphysical in its essence. the subtle inner
work continues onward, only briefly interrupted after all.
such has been Your influence on me, Shiva, silently guiding me
through the years, refining the best in me to a realm of purity
i could not imagine in my younger years of untried ignorance.
saturn is another teacher in Your cosmic university.
the gates' saturn way station & space refinery was just one small
classroom in Your vast cosmic university, one among many.
ah Shiva, so we move into the evolving energies of now,
as i plunge wholly into You: the gates' saturn way station & space
refinery merges fully into the infinite unknown in
sacred solemn trust in You. You take this awareness far beyond the
human & temporal into my true home in You, as You. just as
the planet is one with the solar system, & the solar system
is one with the galaxy, so am i also one with You, Shiva.
i rest in You, never to be parted, for the body's death is but
the opening of the door for me finally to come home to You.
i understand that the sun is alive, a great sentient being,
a dear teacher who is surrounded by students, whom we call planets.
this earth, who gives substance for our bodies, is itself alive & in
the midst of its own spiritual unfolding & deep sadhana.
i see also that the human species comes from the quickening
planetary sadhana & our lives reflect the earth's urge to give a
grateful gift to our solar teacher who holds us safe in his body.
he also evolves in his own service to the living galaxy,
spinning in its sadhana like a great cosmic sufi in joyful
fervor with the venerable divine local group of galaxies.
they all gyre together in concert with the vaster galactic dancing
divinities throughout the huge far-flung deep field of untold billions
of galaxies visible to humans through our many instruments.
these immense living congeries of starbeings themselves constitute
a yet greater life unimaginable to flesh & bone lifeforms.
these networks of transgalactic beings express the outpouring called
"the big bang," a cosmic event that has got our full attention.
here we are, human beings peering into the vastest unknown that
we are capable of through our telescopes. we are created thus
by our earth, who gives us these bodies & the burning urge to explore.
oh Shiva! Your expression is vast & varied & the whole of it
constitutes You, spinning in Your dance of creative transformation.
You have given us a beginner's grasp of this immeasurable
existence & i am grateful for the all-embracing overview.
thank You, Shiva, for this immensity of interconnected lives:
transgalactic, galactic, solar & planetary. thank You for
the gods, devas, & unknown others who dance in this great creative
ensemble. we ourselves are an iteration of this grand dancing
cosmic life, kin to planets & stars. thank You, Shiva, for the guidance
& instruction & for being my dance-partner in this brief vision
of one little corner of this vast realm of metagalactic space.
OM NAMAH SHIVAYA
it is the dark of the moon in january. crystalline stars arc radiant overhead.
virgin snow at deep midnight folds over the hills & valleys of the mountain countryside.
i am wrapped & layered well in a long down coat, my full winter cocoon for stargazing.
i carry a folding lawn chair out to the winter-bare field & place it at the center
of my known universe, open to the arcane communication of stars, open to
the mysteries teasing at the edge of awareness. silence softly & thickly enfolds
like an invitation to transcend the human story & its demands & exclusions.
i am at the still-point of all that i can know of the embodied world, suspended beneath
the witnessing sky in my reclining lawn chair. great shining beings cluster around me.
some of them are stars drawn here by my beseeching heart: others but touch the edge of vision.
all creation is breathing with me in the cold of the gleaming night as the stars reach down.
the sky is alive & dancing. i am part of it, for only the body is of earth.
i spread my fingers & stir the still, cold air. the stars stir something deep within, preparing
me for You, Shiva, laying me open beyond all concern. an ageless destiny has
called me forth into this night of shining snow crystals & stars to commune with these elders.
the rolling silent land, the clustered trees & the old bones of the mountain hold me while the
great glowing sky of stars enters me & fills me with quiet yearning. Shiva, You call me.
i respond to Your call to go beyond the human realm, for this place is not my true home.
i find my home in You, Shiva. this world is my domain of service & these words are one
form it takes. they are like stars calling to be seen, alluring, shining forth even in the
desolation of deep winter snow in the dark of the moon. they are the fixed stars of my
inner space, spelling out Your holy name, emblazing "Shiva" to light the sky in blessing.
the field is open & bare, harvested to stubble,
soaking up the streaming light of the sun, rejoicing.
the sun, in sacred union with the whole rolling earth,
blazes love & joy into the entire galaxy.
the galaxy, in vast dance with other galaxies,
spins in etheric quantum entanglement & love.
love like dark matter. love like nebulae, like quasars.
love like gravity, like magnetism, like lightning.
love moving like the tides or like blood & lymph flowing.
love like egg & sperm uniting. love like human birth.
it's the same everywhere: this dance of energy,
the holy harmonium sounding a sacred chord
that echoes through the heart & bloodstream like music, pure!
Shiva, the stars are shining in the sky of my eyes
in the heavenly quantum entanglement called love
where i am filled with the sound of Your sweet primal OM.