“We delight in the beauty of the butterfly but rarely admit to the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty”. Maya Angelou
If you look up the idiom — to go out of one’s mind this is the stuff that pops up.
go out of one’s mind
I am in this camp. Just without the pop star popularity…
I have recently started to observe a new kind of attention growing in me. I really sense things vs think about them. All my sense organs are on a natural D.M.T high. I have discovered something within me.
I can see my thoughts now. I can see how they come and go. I can see how they emerge without any suggestion on my part and then fade away. I can on a good day be the witness. I can step back from the gush of negative energy arising in me and look at it. I used to stay angry and sad for days. Now it lasts minutes. You know you are going out of your your mind when you can watch its movements.
It’s as if my attention has had a reboot. I am amazed at the magnificent creativity in nature in every petal of a wild flower and how each is unique in its experience of itself and yet a repetition of its ancestral DNA memory.
I feel a steady flow of compassion and empathy. I rarely get angry. I enjoy being in the moment. I am at ease a lot more and
I enjoy being in the moment wherever I am. I am much more creative in my expression and I am really enjoying being alive after a long time.
Flash back a year and i see a man who has nursed and suffered an ego life for over 3 decades. In the age of the `Ego me’ I have amassed moderate levels of wealth, status, fame and loving relationships. I have lifetime memberships to clubs and airlines and a lot of stuff in my houses around the world. But I could never understand why that never could quench me in my heart.
The more successful I got the lonelier I felt.
So I took the decision a desperate man sometimes takes.
I decided to finally look inside myself.
I quit my job and isolated myself from the world for a year and explored who i was.
Along the way i went to Tibet, walked 100’s of kms to calm my mind, read a shit load about what is wrong with people like me if they exist, found great wisdom and comfort in science and sages and psychedelics. More on that another time. But here i am reporting from the other side on what i found.
I found a lot of junk and a lot of pain and a lot of incompleteness. And deep inside all this darkness I found my ego.
My ego, my loving best friend who had cared for me and fought for me and stayed up late at night willing me on my fight with the world. My loyal ego that was there when no one else thought I could make it.
My only rock in the ocean of defeat.
It was born when I needed an identity and a persona. I can see why when we are born nature switches on this sense of self in us to help us survive and support ourselves and gives us a sense of identity.
This identity is what we use to gain a status in our lives and compete to grow ourselves. But nature knows that it is a temporary state that can be transcended to get to a higher state of being for those who wish for it. I now realise my ego is an illusion created by my mind to protect me and prepare me for the next stage of my journey.
So I am going through an ego melt.
Or I as the me I knew is dissolving into the me that I did not know.
I am reminded of the journey of the butterfly as a comparable transformation.
It begins its life as a caterpillar that grows out of its egg shell and is a virtual eating machine as it grows in size. Along the way it sheds its skin a number of times. Each shedding marks the start of a new life stage called an instar. Then it finds a twig where it attaches itself and sheds its skin for the last time. It stops eating or moving and thus starts a period of metamorphosis.
It literally dissolves itself into mush inside that cocoon that it builds around itself.
It kind of commits suicide in the knowledge and genetic faith that there is another form waiting in itself waiting to be born.
But the only way it can do that is only if it gives up its current state of being.
What a romantic, audacious dream of nature. To dream of flying while crawling and being a leaf junkie is simply amazing.
To protect itself when it is most vulnerable to predators, the pupa takes on a shape a colour of a plant to camouflage it. It’s a similar state in humans when one has to disappear from the day to day humdrum of life to hibernate in self-induced isolation to work on recreating oneself that I can totally empathise with.
In the butterfly’s case it stays motionless for 1 and a half weeks. In this period…it dreams…is the only way I can describe it to myself.
It imagines itself and rebuilds itself from scratch, one cell at a time. I wonder what the caterpillar thinks it is as it transforms. Does it know what it is, does it feel pain, does it dream or have nightmares, or does it know its destiny. I think it must be a mix of all these otherwise it would not show the change of colour that it does while its being formed.
When the butterfly emerges its wings are still small …but in half an hour the fluids are pumped into the wings and they expand and take full shape and strength. Now it’s ready to drink the nectar of the flowers and start the cycle again.
Butterflies for me are a signal from nature that a complete transformation of a being is possible on this planet even if it looks like an impossible task when confronted with it at the start. Butterflies have symbolised consistent change, cycle and ultimately transformation across time and civilisations. This is also how I see their role in human awakening and transformation- as a sign that transformational change is inherent in nature and therefore can be learnt and realised.
Maybe I am losing my mind. Or maybe i am going out it and it feels great.