“A light must B light to C light and feel D light.” – Dr. Andrew Vidich
While this week has felt like a marathon for Julia and I, we recognize the universe has been accelerating to help us manifest what we have been asking for. Sometimes there is a conspiracy on our behalf.
Thursday night we were asked to sing two songs for a meditation class Dr. Andrew Vidich was offering at the Center for Remembering and Sharing in NYC. We have been reading a book he co-authored called Let There Be Light, which explores how the internal light that is present and transforms the individual is found within all major faiths and paths of wisdom.
Julia and I had a full and rewarding day but coming back into the city for the second time, we felt overbooked, exhausted and almost wished we hadn’t committed ourselves.
We arrived early and were there when Dr. Vidich arrived. He was wearing a fez and a scarf, as if he was a bearded Dr. Who ready to take us out of ourselves into the expanded continuous adventure. His smile steals over you and the twinkle in his eye makes you feel as if he might just disappear if you blink. Even his beard fans out evenly, curling out to greet you.
His talk before the meditation was about being humble. He said the poet Hafiz used to put a pebble inside a bowl every time his thoughts or actions were less than loving. At the end of the day he would reflect and realize how full the bowl was. This was not to shame himself but to recognize that his ego was not as trustworthy as his love was.
Dr. Vidich told a wonderful story from a classic poem about Layla and Majnun. Layla was a princess and Majnun was madly in love with her. Because of the gulf in their social standing, they were not allowed to consummate their affection but their love for one another was boundless.
One day Layla announced she wanted to bestow a blessing on all of her servants. Majnun dressed as a servant and stood at the end of the line as Laila filled each of the glasses they were all given with milk. When she saw Majnun, she knocked the glass out of his hand. Everyone felt sorry for him but Majnun was in ecstacy. He explained to the other servants that the blessing she wanted to give him could not be contained in the small glass, so she broke it. Layla is God or divine nature and Majun is the soul, madly in love with its source.
This reminded me of the Jewish mystic legend of the supernal light of ‘being’ filling the ten glass vessels of physical form. The glass vessels couldn’t take all that love and so they shattered. This corresponds to the Big Bang. The legend goes on to say that illuminated shards are scattered throughout the world and that we can search for them within ourselves and in each other. This is called Tikkun Olam, which means repairing the world. The custom of breaking the glass at the end of a Jewish wedding ceremony, symbolizes the launching and formation of the expanding universe, which is just starting for the couple and a sign that their love cannot be contained in any vessel. It is also an invitation for them to search for illumination within themselves and in those around them.
In the café downstairs after the session, Dr. Vidich said “Mysticism is everyone’s birthright.” Mysticism is just having a direct experience of your true nature.
He said religions were intended to help us graduate. Many organizations can become more interested in our tuition and like to keep us enrolled. While we can enjoy the sweetness of the communities each path provides, we can also let go of all that is exclusive and promotes division.
Surely, Dr. V is not the first to talk of universal spirituality and understanding but he reminded us that the shift is really taking place. I used to feel so isolated years ago when I was attracted to the thread that runs through all the great teachings. More and more people are opening up to some form of spirituality. There is a recognition that what unites us is a common humanity that goes beyond our personal heritage. This is why there is such dramatic, violent fundamental clinging to politics and organized religion. We are collectively turning towards a more expansive view of ourselves and one another.
Break the glass and be open to the love that cannot be contained.