Ahead of him sat the cave. After so many years of searching, he’d found it. Or was it one of many? He still wasn’t sure about that, but it didn’t matter. He’d found this one at least. Inside he hoped to find himself. Connect with all those past lives, his many selves.
Instead of walking right up to it and entering, he sat. He could feel a compulsion to go inside, but wanted to wait. Wanted to linger with that feeling. Wanted to put the doing off, a little longer. As soon as he entered he knew that feeling would change. There would be a clear before and after. He sat with his eyes closed and legs crossed.
At some point he got up, left his pack behind, and walked into the cave. He felt outside of himself, as though he were watching a thing. Am I still meditating? Is this a dream? Is this actually happening? But then the question was: What does ‘actually happening’ even mean? He was doing it, so yes, at least on some level it was happening.
He expected the air inside the cave to be dry and stale, or damp and stale. Certainly not fresh, which is was. Pale luminous writing on the walls and ceiling cast a soft glow over the interior. Drawings of animals mid-stride, men and women sitting around fires, children playing, scenes of peace, life, and love. Under the drawings, lining the base of the wall, were small ferns with fuzzy curled fronds and under the ferns grew tiny mushrooms the same color as the drawings. The mushrooms cast light upwards, lighting the underside of the ferns, some of the light leaking through to cast a glow on the bottom half of the stone walls.
On the ground, eyes closed, his breathing a rhythmic pattern, he began to expand beyond himself. More connected, and yet more separate, from all. The walls of the cave: him; the ground: him; the sky outside: him. A mote of awareness at the center of existence. What sees the room better? The elephant, or the ant?
In shrinking himself to near oblivion he saw more than ever before. In doing so he would find himself, all of himself. All the other pieces of him doing the same, would find each other.