THE LEAP OF THE ANGEL


There are journeys you don't forget. When we travel to the heart of ourselves, everything takes on the aspect of a miracle. However, it is not always comfortable, not always pleasant to take a one-way trip to the heart of oneself. This is not about egocentricity or narcissism, but about the most courageous, the most humble, the most gigantic of explorations. If there is a place where we go to, petrified of honesty, it is this one.

We sometimes think it is necessary to go out into the world to get to know oneself. This world, however, will never be anything but a representation of our inner world. It is impossible to escape it. In meeting the other, it is always me that I meet, inevitably. Wonderfully. And as a diver sits there watching the surface of the water wondering whether it's time to dive or not, the risk is that you'll sit there for years waiting for good weather. But the weather depends only on what's inside us. If we are full of the sun's rays shining on the infinite edges of the water, there is every chance that we will see and receive them through every glance we cast at the world.

For the pianist that I am, a concert that would not be an opportunity to get closer to oneself is of no interest. Music is nothing but an art of seeing, hearing and feeling. A catharsis in its inner tunnel. An awakening accelerator. An opening from inside.


As a child, I never heard the idea that there was another way, that other options could exist, always, under any circumstances. That lack of horizon opened me up to other doors, like Alice in Wonderland...


In this hyper-vigilance of every moment, I responded to any external injunction almost before it was issued. This skill forged by age had created a certain character in me. Hyper connected to the outside world, sensitive to the slightest jolt of a swallow. Perfect to be ecstatic about the beauty of the butterfly when it flaps its wings with the delicacy of an angel. But absent from my interior. As if, by dint of being the other, of projecting all ecstasy onto an external object, one no longer feeds oneself. This is what passion is all about. Waiting for the Other to fill what is empty in me. Whether it is food, eroticism or passion for any field. Resignation to be an object of passion too, oneself for the Other. To please others. Both absent and dependent, here is the double pain of a being trying to survive in a sur-place.

THE CALL OF THE SOUL


For a few years now I have realized that my soul loves to explore, test, discover. In a word : going to the unknown. The unknown is the most frightening place for everyone, otherwise nothing would stop us. All sorts of disaster scenarios that we foresee (especially now) are only the result of old beliefs about what the unknown represents for ourselves, our most intimate fear. It is the benevolent trace of a past that is in perpetual resilience.


The unknown may not be what we know about ourselves but what we would do if we really listened to ourselves. In that it terrorizes us. It is a reflection of our demons as well as our angels, of our beauty as well as our cracks.


This is the experience I have recently had as the most initiatory of trials. Shamanic initiation, some would say. At the border of two worlds - what we take for life and death - this is the field of exploration for a wiseman, a madman, a shaman or an artist. The only thing that counts is knowing how to return to it, on your own.


But how can one find oneself, how can one meet oneself, if one does not accept the possibility of getting lost first ?


TO LOSE ONESELF IN ORDER TO (RE)FIND ONESELF


Having gone for a walk in an unknown forest on the outskirts of Paris, as part of a meditation retreat, between two sessions, I quickly became dizzy. Alert with all my senses, I rave at each rose petal like the most beautiful of offerings. Each place where my gaze is set is a cathedral of beauty, a burst of the soul, an orgy for the heart. The body, in fusion, embraces the vibrations of the living through all these plants. They are a symphony of the living. Abundance of joy!


So I rush into them, or rather let my instinct guide me through the paths, sometimes to the right, sometimes to the left. Time no longer exists. When the moment is lived, the consciousness becomes awakened, totally there, present in every gesture, in every part of the body. There is no more past or future. They are illusion. The moment remains as pure Love. Infinity. Plunging into this abyss of beauty, I feel my neural circuits transforming, as if I myself were witnessing the transmutation of old parasitic thoughts that no longer reach me. All these discomforts that have been with me for too long are annihilating one after the other. Changing structures, transmutations of patterns. I observe these mechanisms being replaced like a surgical self-operation from my brain. It makes it dizzying. Where it spins can be destabilizing. Who am I if I'm not what I've been told about myself for so long? Who am I if I'm nothing? And all at once? No more ties, no more holds to hang on to. Just the vast infinity, the limitless horizon. Like a hand opening up and offering the pebble held in tension, there's a feeling of "no limit". It lets go... Just like this sport, the free divers who practice it go off to explore this absence of end, this overtaking of internal maps. It is then normal to feel a loss of bearings. And what a luxury to offer oneself, the time of a lifetime - that is to say the time of a wing flapping, the time of a breath - the questioning of what one really is - in essence.


And it is precisely at this point, too frightening, that we often turn back, fearing for our physical or moral integrity or whatever. Old beliefs. Am I going crazy? Am I going to die? Am I going to be able to come back to live in this great bath, this gigantic illusion? "Beyond this limit, as Romain Gary says, your ticket is no longer valid". This is what has been living in our unconscious since the dawn of time, since the worries transmitted from generation to generation through all these unpaced memories. But it is also, miraculously, what pushes us to look further, always further. To heal what needs to be healed, to care for future generations, to take care of the living. In this age of nanotechnology, it seems that the farthest has never been so close! Paradoxically, between the head and the heart lies the longest journey, the greatest quest for the Grail. We push millimeters of ants as we once explored the unknown seas of our planet.


Suddenly, as we go farther and farther, an old fear comes up and tells me it's time to go back. To go back. My head is spinning, my heart is racing. My thoughts are translating into anxiety. Suddenly I'm "lost". In the middle of an unknown wood, without a phone, without an address, without anyone around, in a state that is out of step enough to lose my footing... What was supposed to be a simple stroll between two meditation sessions is taking a very different turn. It is taking the form, little by little, of a cataclysm. Gigantic. Like a tsunami, it makes no noise at first. Only the distant, deafening echo, the vibration of years, of decades, whispering from the depths of the oceans to burst suddenly when the time comes - unexpected, unforeseen.


Alert enough for extreme situations, I calm down to retrace my steps. But there's no such thing as calm. And demanding it only makes it more impossible. So she pretends. The head gets restless and the mind gets excited. It tries to calculate how many times I've gone right or left and at what moments. To think that the mind helps us in such circumstances is to believe that we would get out of the fear of dying through our rationality Incongruous! It goes round and round. Not just in the head, not just in the veins or in space, but as if by turning it brings me to my 6 years. Regression. Journey through quantum time... A lost little girl. This little thing of nothing, abandoned. We're there! We're there! This is it, this is it. What can I do? Nothing, really nothing. The abandonment is there, it had clung to the body, relentlessly. Alone. That abysmal memory has been with me through the ages. There it is, screaming, popping out, bursting out. This tsunami lands on this little thing that still defined me and with which I identified. It rises like a wave of unheard-of violence. Cataclysm. In hypnosis sessions, when I myself accompany those seeking to overcome these discomforts, it is sometimes a matter of reliving a trauma in order to overcome it, crossing the shore to reach the other side, definitively, and knowing that at any moment it will now be possible, even easy, to do so. But this requires a certain emotional purge that can sometimes feel like hell, even when it only lasts a few moments. It also requires accompaniment. Crossing the underworld and coming back from it, I have a little experience of that. But there has always been in the corner of my mind the idea that one comes back from it, even halfway, even in transit. And now, at that moment, around me, when everything is pure beauty, a voice tells me that I might not come back... At the same time as my 6th birthday, an old soul appears, petrified of having perhaps arrived at the moment of passage. It is possible, I think to myself, that I may never find the way out. Is there only one? To leave this paradise without making it becomes a hell!


Here I am alone, purging the worst of my abysses: total solitude. Facing myself: the infernal labyrinth.


Can I exist if no human being sees me? Has the world only really existed? Isn't it all just madness?


Very quickly, I feel that the more I turn, the more anguish rises and that it is her, above all, that I must take care of. Not of the road, not of walking for hours on end, but of that part of me that screams with fear and sadness. "Why have you forsaken me?" Jesus wrote on the cross, before adding: "Your Will be done". All this is subtly understood. Of course, there is no question of an external will deciding everything. And it is never a question of abandonment, but of the illusion of abandonment. How can we be abandoned within the very matrix from which we come? It's hard to feel when you're prey to old demons. Yet it would be like hearing a bird say, "Why did you throw me up in the air?"


The same terror when you're pushed down a slope for the first time on a bike or on skis as a little child... We have the resources, but we don't believe in it.


That day, in the middle of the forest, the little girl inside me, scared for too long, needed to relive that fear fully to release once and for all those old stigmata of fear. those old attachments. An irrational, paralyzing fear. A self-birth. Life is all about births, deaths, rebirths, bereavements and more births.


HEALING


Then I think back to a video of the American actor Will Smith telling about his parachute jump. Taken in horror, he describes what is going on inside him until his toes reach the edge of the plane door open to the void. The void... You can know that you have a parachute, that you are not totally lost, the body reacts according to old memories. What is the vacuum? There's nothing you can do about it. Breathing gets blocked, nerves give out... Then, pushed by the monitor, he is suddenly thrown into the air, at first throbbing with fear, surprise, then discovering the most "divine" thing - to use his words - that is to live. And to add that behind each of our terrors lies the most sublime experience in the world. It would therefore be enough to simply push open the door, this famous guardian of our worst demons, however heavy and infernal it may be. Behind her, right there, the greatest gift of all. All the love in the world. Our fears would be a wild card, a gateway to something bigger than ourselves. It's up to us to unwrap them, open their strings and their packages...


Thinking back on this image, I try to catch my breath in the middle of these trees that look at me without seeing me. The real distress, I say to myself, is perhaps dying without anyone but me witnessing it. Living without witnesses and dying like a fly. In this abyss of silence. If no one sees me, am I still alive? What proves it to me ? Suddenly feelings... Okay, my body exists. It's strange. What if I really have to stay in it ? After all, no one could find me, and by the time they find out that I haven't come home and they come to get me, I start counting the hours and days... Besides, no one seems to care, that's my ego making some of its own. So, if I have to stay there, how do I want to live it ? Can I love that part of me, that tiny little feverish thing that screams and cries with fear ? Not very glamorous. Not pleasant at all. I'd like my inner GPS back. But it's in panic. Nonexistent. Unaccessible at the moment. And the more I think about it, the more it's burning me. Yet I feel like nothing and no one but me and the sky can help that part of me. So I'm going to have to talk to him myself, welcome him, accept him. And above all, not to look for a way out. There is no way out. Look for trust, for relaxation. On the inside. Can I trust my intuition ? Can I find that absolute faith ? Am I capable of it ?


Here I am alone, purging the worst of my abysses : total solitude. Facing myself : the infernal labyrinth.


Can I exist if no human being sees me? Has the world only really existed ? Isn't it all just madness ?


Very quickly, I feel that the more I turn, the more anguish rises and that it is her, above all, that I must take care of. Not of the road, not of walking for hours on end, but of that part of me that screams with fear and sadness. "Why have you forsaken me?" Jesus wrote on the cross, before adding: "Your Will be done. All this is subtly understood. Of course, there is no question of an external will deciding everything. And it is never a question of abandonment, but of the illusion of abandonment. How can we be abandoned within the very matrix from which we come? It's hard to feel when you're prey to old demons. Yet it would be like hearing a bird say, "Why did you throw me up in the air?"


The same terror when you're pushed down a slope for the first time on a bike or on skis as a little child... We have the resources, but we don't believe in it.


That day, in the middle of the forest, the little girl inside me, scared for too long, needed to relive that fear fully to release once and for all those old stigmata of fear. those old attachments. An irrational, paralyzing fear. A self-birth. Life is all about births, deaths, rebirths, bereavements and more births.


Since there's nothing left to lose... then I'm free. Neither before nor after. If these are to be my last moments, let us live them fully, completely, in every part of the body and heart. Live intensely, accept that all this is nothing in the end. Is this called letting go ? When it comes to one's own life, this word takes on a very different dimension. Surrendering oneself to abandonment. To embrace one's fears and breathe the life that goes through me. No more waiting. Just the urgency to take care of myself so as not to die of anxiety. To die perhaps, but rather of ecstasy than of anxiety! Focused on those parts of me, caressing those who scream, trying to talk to my thoughts in chaos, I let my steps go. I no longer trust my head. It has been tossed here and there, one shot in one direction, one shot elsewhere. A real weather vane! Scared at times, lazy at others when it turns in the void, when it is not animated by the heart. The very heart that cries out needs to find love again in order to move forward. Observing this, I let go of all will. "Thy will be done and not mine". Perhaps we are speaking to our unconscious when we let this phrase resound. For the unconscious never has bad intentions and our instinct will always be to take care of ourselves. So I let myself go with the flowers, regaining a little bit the impulse to breathe here and there. Can I walk without any purpose ? How strange. Not knowing if you exist or not, opening up to the invisible like never before...


I see that little girl inside me cowering in fear and talking to her, telling her that we're alive. Suddenly, a rose attracts me and I give in to the impulse of the body. This attraction leads me to a little path that I know... This is the path! Here I am on the steps that lead to my destination. After several hours of panic, wandering, abandonment, acceptance, faith, ecstasy, embrace and reconciliation with myself, I realize my initiation.


Like a returnee from another world, I ring at the door I left a few hours before - like a mirage - and everything appears to me full, filled, perfect. Guided. Life wants us to do good, I know that now. How can we forget it? I suddenly realize each of my gestures, each of my steps, each of my apparent defeats as well as each of my apparent successes throughout my life like the perfect bolt of a cog where everything is right. There is nothing we do that is wrong. Not ever. As Will Smith launches into the air, I realize that there is everything to risk, always, because the best is behind the fear. Further on... The greatest risk is not to dare. There's nothing to lose, ever. Only to transform, to explore.


Are you ready for the total experience to realize your life? Are you ready to jump into the void? For Buddhists, it's not so much that we're afraid to die as that we're afraid to live. Besides, it seems impossible to be at peace with only one of these two facets. Death being part of life and vice versa, how can we exist if we leave out one side of the experience? I am wary of those who say they are devoid of the fear of dying as I am touched by those who testify their fear of opening the wings of life?


Like an orgasm, fear, discomfort, alchemise themselves by opening one's body, just as the strings of an instrument need to let their vibration resonate. We become more used to shrinking, to closing up when the unknown arises, when we are alive, deep down, only from the greatest of unknown equations.


THE WIRE OF LIFE

As the famous tightrope walker Philippe Petit told me during his crossing between the two towers of the World Trade Center: at a certain point, when one of the two feet is on the wire, the other is still standing on the platform. But inevitably there will be that moment when all the weight of the body will swing on the wire once the second foot has left the starting point, relying on the whole cable installation and all the resources in itself to keep in balance in this void above Manhattan. It could have been hours - a lifetime! - to remain one foot, or both, on the platform, without moving, without going further ? But it was impossible for him to die one day thinking that he would never have tried to put all his weight on the edge of his life.

What if that's all life is? Letting go so you can fly better ? Not go to the top of the Eiffel Tower naively believing that we'll fly if we launch ourselves into the air. But rather all those moments of life when we cling so firmly to our sufferings even more than to our joys, like old slippers that half paralyze us. Proust describes it when his character, Swan, finds it so hard to let go of Albertine, not because he still loves her but because he can't bear the idea of not being in love anymore, of living without this illusion, this wonderful crutch. We are so good at creating our own sets thinking that they will make us happier. We invent our own handicaps, having such a diminished idea of ourselves and paradoxically an inordinately large idea of our ego. Yet it is precisely by relying on something bigger than ourselves that everything happens. The director, as we call him, our Consciousness, our unconscious, our body, our intuition, the heart, God... is immensely great.


It is also believed that art would be one more illusion, a kind of trompe-l'oeil diverting the human being from distress to bring him towards beauty. This is not so. It is at the heart of oneself and perhaps even at the heart of this distress that the most beautiful of jewels is to be found, for it is the truest, the freest, the most unique.

What if everything that frightens us is pure illusion ? What if behind this fear there is, in reality, no danger ? Or even better: what if there was all the grace that we have always been looking for in our hearts? How will we interact? What would our days be like if we parachuted into this great emptiness, our minds abandoning all struggle in this place full of mystery ?


What else is there to do but to come and breathe on our suffering, to reconcile our wounds and transmute our sorrows ? Like clouds, they metamorphose as soon as we give them another face, another destination. Now I believe that all humanity will cease to cause suffering when it stops suffering itself.

Life loves us. Infinitely. Always and forever. And we are Life !


Then, other horizons open up, a way of doing things "differently" exists and we are its eternal creators.


In the joy of being

At the heart of our humanity


I wish you a wonderful week !


Artistically yours,


Hélène



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                                                                     all rights reserved Hélène Tysman - 2018

                                                                                                                                                          

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