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  • Keith Prossick and Stephanie Kohler

Nataraja


Nataraja is the manifestation of Shiva, the energy of transformation, in his ecstatic dance. You will find him if you look beyond the shores at the ends of space and time. Spinning the story, he dances with the drum of Creation in one hand and the fire of Destruction in the other. He dances atop the demon of ignorance, dispelling darkness. The strings of the universe are separated, cleaned, and repaired. All the things that love remain, and all else that is no longer needed is burned away. At the end of the dance, everything is brought back together, again and again.

Pause.

The storm — When did it end?. Just a breathing into peace and a new rhythm beginning to beat. Ta ta ta...BOOM! Again.

All the senses awaken to new stories and songs.

I hope these scars heal. Well, hopefully, though not completely. Scars are cool. Healing comes in waves. Deal and heal. Waking up is hard to do. Breathe, just keep the breathing steady. Center will find itself. Just breathe, and doing in the same direction helps it along.

Stay focused. It’s been a long journey. You are almost there and the hard part is over. The rest is easy. Even though the beginning is difficult, every step from that point forward gets easier. Just move. Go… now. You are using your imagination to delay. No, five more minutes of sleep really isn’t going to help. C’mon, you can sleep while you are drinking coffee. Just get to the mug.

Found it. Now where was I, oh yes, a boat.

Here it is — What? The beginning? — The horizon of events. Where things begin to happen, and end.

More Whispers — What, are you my friend now? — That depends?

On what?

Can you tell who is who? — This ought to be fun.

Still? Still water, horizon. I’m awake. Stillness captures the boat, the water reflecting a revealing sky. Light and warmth. My heart is beating. Music, coming from all directions. Thoughts finding patterns. A slow beat’s crescendo toward life. Again, the heart. Musical waves begin flowing, surrounding, lifting. All is me, for at least this moment. So much thinking. But at least I am not sinking.

Strings singing, capturing my karma in their wake. Through me, pulling sounds gather my memories. Magnetic winds ebb and flow across my body. They begin to move me, or I them. I do not know. Either way, movement begins with a steady acceleration through frozen.

What is this? — The Remembering. — It feels like unwinding. Pieces of me fly off.

Like birds, these pieces of me take flight. They begin to dance. Mirrors reflecting memories, some easy, some hard. As they play, they fade away. Embers fading, floating from air to water.

It starts slow, but then they rush. So many memories start pouring out of me, spinning around, the dance becomes intense. A snake, it entwines me, three times. Voice, Heart, and Will. My inside begins to spin. The snake is burning.

Which memories do I keep, which ones do I release... How do you handle all this information? Is this why we forget? Quick, remember…

The pieces that reflect love expand higher, burning bright above—they become the stars giving just a bit more light. Those infused with pain sink and fall, cleansed upon the face of the water. The pieces collect and spiral toward the boat. A galaxy forms, an island bulging from the center. The boat is lifted out of the water by the remains of painful memories.

The island begins to move, it’s alive … the demon of ignorance.

Upon realization, the boat flips … I stand on top. The demon settles ...

Lifted upwards, I feel the stars supporting me. Floating, my body is dancing. Look, I’m doing it on one foot. To dance without moving—that is, feeling the world dance around you, through your own stillness. It is really there, you realize. Yes, there is something more than me.

The sky is dancing, it lights up on fire. The demon just passed out.

I balance on the edge between it all. The edge burns away. Still confused...I find equilibrium.

_______

The Nataraja is a dance we do, many times in many ways. Each time, the goal is the same. Remembering yourself. Who you are and who you want to be. One hand beats a drum, the other wields fire. You will the world you want to become, through the forces of transformation: sound, heat, movement.

Flames surround this dance of Creation and Destruction—the cosmic dance of transformation. Nothing is truly destroyed or created. Nothing is born; nothing truly dies. Even in stillness, the universe is constantly transforming. Everything transforms, continually. The demon under Shiva’s foot is transforming. The snake around his torso is burning and shedding its skin. Homeostasis is an illusion. Existence is the perpetual balance between creation and destruction, chaos and order, symmetry and asymmetry.

Burn it all away, and dance upon the ashes. With an open palm, we free ourselves from fear and accept immortality. Another hand points to the free, lifted leg as we become aware of our salvation. The demon of ignorance is spared. He falls asleep. On our past lives, like layers of coral, we find our home.

The Nataraja is at the end of the universe, at the end of space and time. Yet, like Shiva, we are in the middle of this dance. If you look in the deepest center of yourSelf, you will find him spinning the story. He dances with the drum of Destruction in one hand and the fire of Creation in the other. He dances atop the demon of ignorance, dispelling darkness. The strings of the universe are separated, cleaned, and repaired. All the things that love remain, and all else that is no longer needed is burned away. At the end of the dance, everything is brought back together, again and again.

________

The universe is wide and vast, but so is our center. The Truth surrounds us, but the Truth is us.

You can hear it. The song, spiralling around you. It fills your heart because you realize it is real. It is all real. It just is.

It fills me up with intention. Each intention a bubble forming in my heart, expanding outward. Intentions of love, wisdom, compassion, so many more. They form a ring around me, burning bright, but not me. I feel the dance coming to its end.

My attention focuses. Beyond words I release the fire, downward, freeing ignorance from my path. The mistakes I no longer wish to make. The paths I no longer need to take.

The ash renews life, again. Roots expand … growth moves forward.

A new path reveals itself, or at least a new part of the same path, just further along down the road. The time is coming soon, to being, again. Free to be free.

#featured #consciousness

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