Musings on Resurrection

comments 18
Christ / Course Ideas

The other day I had some old friends drop by for a visit– unannounced.  I was sitting in the plaza having a sandwich, reading or reflecting or some such thing, when Depression slid one of the free chairs out from beneath the table, making a real show of it– dragged it along in a gritty clattering of metal across stone that sent all the pigeons fleeing, and then flopped down like a rubbery fish.  Unshaven, bloodshot eyes, his hair mangled into clumps each of which seemed to be pining for a different escape path, he oozed down in the chair like an oil spill until he found his own level.

I could feel him regarding me coolly, giving me a once over top to bottom as he played some kind of nuisance game with his toothpick.  “How ya’ been?” he asked finally.

“Thought we were through.”

He smiled.  “Aww, now…  Hey!  Me and the boys was just checkin’ in on ya’, that’s all.”

You’re No One and Meaninglessness converged from opposite sides of the plaza, like NSA agents on a stake-out, sat down alongside of me, arms draped on the adjacent chairs, legs crossed, their black wool suits sucking the very light out of the air– a pair of real happy-go-luckies.  I couldn’t even bring myself to look at them.  I stood, took a final swig of my coffee, shut my book quietly, and set off for the street.

“Think we can’t find you?” Depression called after me, smirking, with his arms open wide, palms up like a preacher.  You’re No One punched Meaninglessness in the shoulder, laughing at the boss’s joke, while the other just stood there, expressionless, one of those stone colders, putting on his sunglasses.

* * * * *

They bumped into me on the corner of Seventh and Mason, came around the corner from the other direction and just stood there waving as I walked by, then again in the parking garage, and that night they insisted on watching a movie with me on my couch.  Four was a tight fit, but they wouldn’t have it any other way.  The real problem was they didn’t know how to keep quiet.

“Pretty good use o’ time here, Mike.  Real good.  Lots o’ people doin’ this now.  I mean, not people that accomplish stuff or anything, but you know, lots o’ people…  Just killin’ time…”

“Grab me a beverage while yer up?”

“What’s with the selection here on the brain box, huh?  That cablevision thing’s come a long way…”

“Hey, what happened to that thing you were workin’ on?  You know, that uhhh…  oh, yeah, that writin’ thing.  Not feelin’ it tonight?  Hey, don’t let us get in your way or nuthin’.”

And so on and so forth…

I tried to get quiet and still, get centered, make a collect call to Hafiz, but all I could hear is them whispering and laughing.

“Look, he’s doin’ that thing again…”

“Whooo-ooo-whoo-oooo….” like the crazy chant.

“Hee hee!  How’s that work now, Mike?  Maybe we could try.  Or help out a little bit, like.  What.  You just, like, ask for the bad guys in your head to get hauled away or something.”  A snap of the fingers.  More laughter.

Meaninglessness still hadn’t said a word.  He just stood in the corner, not amused amidst the giggling of this two bit partners, staring at me all night.

* * * * *

Thankfully this wasn’t my first rodeo.  “Time for a walk, gentleman.”

Depression and You’re No One look shot each other questioning looks and then shrugged their shoulders.  I grabbed my keys and headed out the door.  There’s rhythm in movement, and life in rhythm, and Christ in life.

“Hey boss, what’s he doin’!?”

Once rhythm was established, I called down to my heart, asked what it feels like to be absolutely free, and then waited.  At first it felt like a big flat nothing, and Meaninglessness drew closer, poised to strike, but then the whole world began to shift.  The buoyancy of Christ arose.  I relaxed.  I saw a dove leap towards the sun.  It felt like a resurrection.  It felt like this

* * * * *

I am faced, I realize, with a fundamental choice, one I will make again and again and again until the illusion of choice no longer exists.

In the Treatises of A Course of Love, Jesus says, “Prayer must be redefined as the act of consciously choosing union.”  This is the purpose of each moment, until the choice is no longer necessary, and prayer is all I have.  I ask Depression, You’re No One, and Meaninglessness if they want to pray with me, by putting all their eggs with me into the unified basket of all that is, but they have gone.  Separation is what makes their painful stories of littleness possible to enact.

Speaking a few pages later in the Treatises about the resurrection, Jesus says, “The great experiment in separation ended with the resurrection, though you have known this not.  For the resurrection and life are now one and the same.  That they are the same has not meant the automatic realization of this change of enormous proportions.  The very nature of change is one of slow realization.  Change occurs all around you every day with your realization of it.  Only in retrospect are the greatest of changes seen…

“You are each called to return to your virgin state, to a state unaltered by the separation, a state in which what is begotten is begotten through union with God.  It is from this unaltered state that you are free to resurrect, as I resurrected.  It is through the Blessed Virgin Mary’s resurrection in form that the new pattern of life is revealed.

“The new pattern of life is the ability to resurrect in form.  The ability to resurrect in life.  The ability to resurrect now.

“Thus is the glory that is yours returned to you in life rather than in death.”

* * * * *

We may die and resurrect countless times, each death the latching onto of a fleeting perception of what it is to be separate, each resurrection the return to unity.  But unity and resurrection are all we truly have, and they are ours beyond any reasons we can comprehend.  Simply because we are they, and they are us.  They are all that can ever truly last.  The world has been reborn, and we are awakening to what this means each time we turn to Love and ask to be taken back.

One day we’ll move in for good, and that will be that…  The promise of the Resurrection will be fulfilled.


  1. Clever build up with the voices of depression, you’re no good, etc. And I agree, I must choose union over and over. I look forward to the day when it’s automatic, right now it takes constant vigilance and I’m often hanging out in separation or unconscious.


    • Vigilance is the word of the day, Brad. It sometimes feels strange to me that there is an element of choice in our peace and happiness, as if I think it should be effortless. Just like, we want to fall in love, not will ourselves to be in love. We want to arise naturally and exist as an experience of its own accord. I wonder sometimes if I’m hopelessly deluded in this desire, but I keep thinking we can arrive at the point where the choice is no longer relevant, and we move with ease and joy and freedom, but some days… there is still a choice to be made. Some willingness to be offered. Some atonement to smack me upside the head. Some days I feel like I’m back to square one- selfish, alone, insecure, confused… Those days are farther and farther apart, but when they arrive it’s like being caught in a trap. At least I know now there is a choice to be made. So I make it, again, and again…



      • Thanks for your honest reflections Michael. I feel like that much of the time. Maybe being a seeker of truth and reading so many books with the message that we when we align with our soul, then life is easy, full of joy, ease and flow. I too yearn for this, but am beginning to wonder if it’s a fairy tale. Though life does seem to flow better as I relax, accept and allow life to be what it is. And we choose how to respond and frame our lives. So I like your perspective to keep resurrecting by choosing peace, love etc.
        blessings on the journey, Brad


        • We must have read many of the same books, Brad. 🙂 I don’t think it’s a fantasy. Well… it is a fantasy to a certain extent while it isn’t real for us, I think, while it is just a dream, but I do think it is always available to be fully accepted and made real. This is the movement I think we are on right now from a conceptual understanding to a lived reality. When I think about it, each of these instances, while awkward or difficult in its transaction, brings me deeper into the lived experience of who I am, and who we are.

          It’s like during the difficult part you don’t even feel real, or whole. You feel like a shade, and then when you thaw inside again, it is so real you promise yourself you’ll never drift like that again… So why do we drift…? I’m on a ramble here, so bear with me… I’m wondering if we drift because there is that seed inside, that core idea of lack or separateness, that doesn’t recognize our own contentment when there isn’t some drama or journey or obstacle forming the context of our experience. Without that context, the meaning that is derived from striving and looking, it’s life is like that awkward moment in conversation with a stranger you realize you may not be likely to connect with on a deep level. So, it hunts up some of this stuff…



  2. “Prayer must be redefined as the act of consciously choosing union.” This flooded through and through me like a benediction. What a resonance and revelation! And how exquisitely perfectly put. Thank you!
    I also loved the description of your interaction with Depression, Meaninglessness, and You’re No One. It really captured how it is when the mind-made self tries to reassert sovereignty.


    • Alison, I’m glad you resonated with this. I love that description as well, though I can take no credit for the wording. I loved your description of it flooding through you like a benediction. Sometimes the right words just open us right up. I try and surround myself with these reminders, as I turn to them often. It’s like being Houdini and making sure all your trusted lock picks are handy before going to sleep, knowing you will wake up in a sprung trap, and then begin the daily work of opening the mind to its true nature.



  3. Even in the sharing of space with this unholy trinity, you manage to inspire. i am grateful for such a comic, creative capture of these characters, putting them in my review mirror, once again…


    • Thanks, Marga. They had my number for a bit. Deep down they’re good guys, though. 🙂 Meaninglessness came over for supper tonight, and after dinner we read some Rumi together. Turns out no one ever talked to him like that before.

      “They mystery does not get clearer by repeating the question, nor is it bought with going to amazing places.

      “Until you’ve kept your eyes and your wanting still for fifty years, you don’t begin to cross over from confusion.”

      (from the Essential Rumi, transl by Barks)



      • Last night we pulled the Barks translation book of Rumi from the bookshelf for a gathering in my living room, a dozen or so fidgety folks at a poetry reading: weary, worry, withdrawn, story teller, drama queen, panicked, jokester, know-it-all, pleaser, door mat, performer, space bunny, and I(i). They had never heard such things; you are right!
        Not repeating the question to find the answer from Rumi reminds me of the Einstein quote about not solving a problem on the level in which it was created…I instantly see Rumi and Einstein sharing an aperitif of apricot wine, while riding together on a beam of light – 50 years of keeping wanting still – not sure I can scratch off even one yet. :0


        • Marga, I have to confess I’m hoping you and me and a whole bunch of our close friends can all contribute to a 50-yr kitty and eek cross the line on some sort of collective accrual system. Grace I think they call it. Getting the credit you deserve. Ha! This week is a bust for me, but I can feel someone out there carrying the torch.

          I’m pretty sure Einstein and Rumi are cooking up a new accounting system, too. Einstein is pushing time’s pliability to the max. One moment of pure timelessness equal to a decade of fasting from lack. Squared.

          Sounds like a wondrous gathering of humanity in your living room. All those people live in my head, too. 🙂 I hope Ese was gentle with know-it-all.



  4. Great post! I loved your story how you identified these parts of yourself by giving them names. I think it is when we can recognize and in a sense name those parts of ourselves that there is a chance to transform that downward, sucking energy into something else. We come to know those parts and accept them. Strangely it is by acknowledging them that we begin to free ourselves of them. “Oh you again” and “I see you but I am choosing something else” that they begin to lose their grasp on us, their power. It doesn’t happen overnight, but with practice we gradually disempower the complexes. I think it is through acceptance of our shadow that we can eventually move into the fullness of our Being, or as you say – union with God.


    • Thank you, Margaret. I agree with the process you have described. As I wrote to Brad, an important realization along the way for me was that there was a choice in all of this… As you say, it doesn’t happen overnight, and we may choose a thousand times before the rock begins to budge, but it will lift. I think inner strength is something akin to the ability to learning we are strong enough to look these feelings in the eye, and live to tell about it…



  5. Ha! The unholy trinity indeed. I read of these seedy characters with a chuckle today, rather than a tremble. It is curious how, when we choose union, all their devilry and shenanigans fall to pieces. I recently had a bout with these three, an intense but short visit, and the statement in my head that somehow saved me was “I have work to do.” This did not mean lofty revelation. It actually meant laundry, dishes, and the physical, mental and emotional hygiene of my family. There was no choice, just union, and those three musketeers when on their merry way. 🙂


    • Devotion is one of the most powerful obliterators of apathy. And always beautiful in its expression. The unholy trinity can’t abide by it. I seemed to have moved right on this week from Depression, You’re No One, and Meaninglessness to Anger, Resentment and Bitterness. Sounds intense, I know, but I’m thinking of them right now as a new batch of bobbleheads on the dashboard. Factor demo’s I’m trying out. Nope… Those aren’t the right ones either! 🙂 Sometimes honesty, along with the patience that devotion to unity offers are all it takes to transform the greatest obstacles into plastic toys…

      Thanks for your note and for sharing in the human experience of movement back and forth across the line…



  6. Love your personifications; I just lump them together and call them The Saboteur! Guess youre familiar with Eckhart Tolle? You may be interested in a tribute poem to Colin Wilson on my blog.
    I’ve had a long ‘relationship’ with zen and life continues to be challenging!


    • I am somewhat familiar with Eckhart Tolle. I read his first book and watched a video or two of him teaching. Loved it! But haven’t kept current I guess you could say, which is absurd since, well… right.

      The Multiplicitous Saboteur! This is much more efficient. The one who seems to have torn certain pages out of my Choose Your Own Adventure game book! Now I just have emptiness where a seeming choice resided… 🙂

      Is your colorful square signifier icon (what are those called? gravatars or something?) one of your paintings?



      • Hi Michael, Yes the painting is one of mine; semi abstract red kites! I dont really paint nowadays but may see if any of my old stuff is worth putting on the blog. Thanks for reading.


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