Blog Alan Seale, May 4, 2020 | Transformational Presence
And so we’re now in our eighth week of sheltering at home. In eight weeks, I’ve only driven my car three times. Otherwise, I’ve been in my home, only going out to walk in my immediate surroundings. No doubt it’s similar for you. Every day has brought some new awareness. Some days are easier, others harder. Yet in the last few days, I’ve experienced another big shift within. I notice that I’m feeling less caught in a space of perpetual waiting, and more and more feel as if I’m standing in a threshold—the threshold between the world that was and the world that will be.
What gets my attention is that I sense movement in that threshold. Instead of feeling like a waiting space, it feels more like a dynamic space. It’s not yet a full-on creative space, nor is it a particularly productive space. Yet I’m aware of new movement stirring inside of me as well as inside the collective consciousness.
Catalyst for the Shift
A couple of weeks ago, on a day when I was struggling to find a focus, these words from my favorite story artist Brian Andreas appeared in my inbox:
what is the place
in you this day
where you open
& let eternity in?
In the moment that I read these words, something broke open inside me. My breath got lighter. My spirit stirred. A smile came to my face. A deep peace settled over me. Suddenly I was no longer waiting for something to happen. I was once again listening and sensing. I was once again tapping into something bigger than me—an intelligence that was trying to communicate with me and guide me.
Brian Andreas’ woodblock painting, Perspectives: Mystery Storyblock, now sits on my desk.
Brian’s beautiful question provided the catalyst I needed. His words the place in you and let eternity in reminded me that eternity—infinite time and space where all that is co-exists—is available to me in every moment. Not only is it available—the access point is actually in me. It’s in all of us. However, we have to open that access point and let eternity in.
A Liminal Space
During this pandemic time, it seems that more people are writing and speaking about liminal space. The word “liminal” comes from the Latin word limen which means “threshold.” It’s the place in between—the doorway between one reality and another.
This is the place we are in now. And it’s the place where we find the portal to eternity.
There’s just one critical caveat. We have to be willing to stay in the liminal space long enough to recognize the portal and, in Brian Andreas’ words, let eternity in. Hence the long and deep place that we’re in now—a place between our old world and a new world that will come. Because as a collective, we aren’t very practiced at locating the portal within us and inviting eternity in, it takes longer right now. We aren’t practiced at slowing down, at pausing, at paying attention, at looking for the light. And so we have to start where we are.
Starting Where We Are
When we practice and get better at it—when we find the place within us where we open & let eternity in—we discover that eternity actually exists right here, right now within this moment in time. Eternity, or the infinite, exists within the finite. And the finite exists within the infinite. To the rational mind, that is a paradox. To the larger intuitive mind, it is the greater reality. What could be possible if we were to live with conscious awareness of both the infinite and the finite at the same time?
In the liminal space, all of the rules and structures of a more fixed or predictable world are suspended. Reality as we have known it is suspended. It’s hard to tell what is “real” and what isn’t.
In this pandemic time, we realize that the finite world we have known so well is now gone. In many ways, reality as we have known it has been suspended, and we sense that the post-pandemic world will be different. Yet we don’t yet know what that means. We can fight against this liminal reality, or we can surrender to eternity.
Metaphorically speaking, we are currently in the beginning of the chrysalis phase of a metamorphosis process. This is the time when the caterpillar is dissolving into “goo” and doesn’t yet know that it will become a butterfly. Or does it?
The seeds of the future are planted in the present. The seeds of who we can become and the world that is waiting for us are planted in who we are now and the world as it currently exists. The idea of a butterfly is planted deep in the inner knowing or intelligence of the caterpillar. It somehow knows to follow the dissolving process through the “goo” into transformation and new creation. It knows instinctually to let eternity in.
What if we actually have the same instinctual knowing within us? What if we have an untapped instinctual awareness of a place within us where we can open & let eternity in to guide us through the “goo?” And what if the only way that we can fully undergo the metamorphosis—the dissolution, transformation, and recreation—is to stay long enough in this threshold between the life we once lived and the next one we will create?