One day a few years ago I had an odd experience. It was afternoon. I had just read a few pages in I Am That (talks with Nisargadatta Maharaj). I closed my eyes, almost dozing off. Then all of a sudden it was as if something hit me on my head, or as if a switch was violently turned inside my head.
With it came the realization: “But I don’t have anything to do with Charlotte Brady.”
I sat up as in shock, looking at my body. I don’t have anything to do with Charlotte Brady! I was wide awake now. As this realization entered my head it pushed out all other thoughts. My head was completely empty.
There was the most exquisite silence.
I experienced myself both from the inside and outside of the body. I used the body’s senses but I also observed it and its relations as if it didn’t really belong to “me’. This “me” felt both familiar and strange, as if it had been there all along but hadn’t been fully recognized before. Now it was all there was.
I went downstairs while contemplating Charlotte’s life. This is the house where she lives. She is married and has kids. “Look, there is her husband”, I said to myself when I saw him working at his desk.
Out loud I said: “Are you having fun?” It was a very honest question. In it was the intense wish for him, and everyone, to have fun and feel peace.
He looked at me and burst out laughing.
I sat down completely at peace and happy with just being. I remember thinking or feeling that the only thing I wanted was to laugh, eat good nutritious food and be with loved ones. Everything else was unimportant. I felt relieved from all burdens.
All of Charlotte’s previous struggles were gone or rather irrelevant. There was just silence and complete relaxation, love without conditions.
When I went out I felt as if I was related to everyone. People looked at me and smiled. People said kind things. Everything was softer and smoother. Time was different too, like it was one big lump of now that could randomly expand or contract.
There were still no thoughts in my head. There was only peace, contentment and pure experience. This state lasted for about a week. Then I gradually felt Charlotte’s normal thoughts start seeping back in.
Eventually, Charlotte was back and I mingled with her. I saw life from her perspective once again.
I remember all of this very vividly. I can still say: “I don’t have anything to do with Charlotte Brady” but I don’t get it in the same way because it wasn’t an intellectual understanding. It wasn’t anything that can be learned in the way we usually learn.
Although it was an extremely pleasurable state I was determined to not make any efforts to get back to it. I knew instinctively that would be a trap. Instead I looked at it as glimpse of what’s ahead and an opportunity to learn more about the human condition from the body’s perspective, an opportunity to learn to let go of my struggles consciously and not just have them air-lifted off.
It’s the perfect unfolding for Charlotte Brady. Somewhere I know this is how “I” have chosen to do it, so that I can speak about it while it’s happening. Because in that other state there was no desire to speak about these matters whatsoever.
We all have our own path. This is mine. If you haven’t already; find, enjoy and luxuriate in yours.
Listen to the Heart Sutra. Read the text also. I feel it’s very close to my experience but with different words. So beautiful.
Charlotte Brady about love, life, freedom and abiding in the heart every moment of the day. This is where flesh is spirit and spirit flesh in raw unadulterated devotion. Life is worship!
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