Bear with me for the first couple of paragraphs – they are relevant to the later ones.
The female genital theme has continued, partly supported, I imagine, by investigating Vajrayogini with the help of Locana’s book. I discovered that the image of an inverted triangle is the basis of Vajrayogini’s seed syllable Vam which of course I connected to the dream I had in the early 1970’s that sparked off this whole process. The main development last week was to find myself sitting in meditation in Vajrayogini’s vulva; her inner labia was wrapped around my waist and lap like a blanket and the outer like another blanket over my shoulders and knees. It was warm and humid and there was an atmosphere of earth and blood, and a general feeling of fecundity. I felt deeply fulfilled and contented, with little waves of priti passing through my body. It wasn’t a sexual experience.
I sat just above her vagina, but at one point I sort of fell forwards – as you would if you were to bow from a sitting position at the end of a meditation – into her vagina which became a large tunnel, a cave, and then a chamber filled with brilliant adornments; it was ecstatically beautiful. I was then transported to a dream that I had had many years ago. In this dream I was driving on a mountain road, I drove through a tunnel onto another road that clung to the side of a rugged cliff; this road led into a second tunnel that went downwards quite steeply and gradually transformed into a large cave passage with a rough floor; I was then on foot and the cave started to close in a little and become filled with brilliant stalactites, stalagmites, straws and bosses; soon the path was very narrow and I had to squeeze between these beautiful formations; as I did so they started to come alive and reached out to touch me and gradually absorb me; I gave myself to them ecstatically.
One of the difficulties with meditation is that one often has meaningful, emotionally rich, or illuminating experiences, connected perhaps with previous experiences, which take the form of images or sounds, ideas or bodily sensations, which one would like to share with others. (All good things almost demand to be shared.) ‘Big’ dreams also fall into the same category. I would say they were all experiences of the rupaloka. But so often the telling of them carries nothing of the depth of the original experience and could possibly seem a bit weird or suspect, especially if subjected to psycho-analytic interpretation. Artists maybe have the skill to communicate their spiritual experiences in some form or another, and in cultures with living religious symbols there is a commonly accepted language. I have always wanted to ‘write’ but don’t have the skill, and the language of Buddhism although infinitely rich and tailored to this business can often seem clunky. For example the traditional description of the four dhyanas of the rupaloka – which I see as four primary colours that combine in various ways to produce the rich gamut of spiritual experience – can seem rather dry and technical. Tantric Buddhism is of course rich enough for anyone but coming from such an alien culture there are all the well known difficulties. There are so many rich and liberating experiences that one would like to share but how can this be done when they are so private. There are Western traditions like the classical myths, alchemy, hermetic magic, cabala and dare I say it Christianity – especially gnostic Christianity – as well as the works of Artists. But perhaps in the end one has to be satisfied with being a simple mystic and to enjoy the riches of the spiritual life, and beyond, alone. At least perhaps we can provide encouragement and the means for others to explore their own spiritual dimensions. This is why Uttaraloka is so important to me.
I still have one foot very much in the world. In the last two weeks I have got my permanent residence in Spain, my car has a Spanish registration plate and insurance, and I have got health insurance and a working bank account. I’ve also kept in touch with the community at Guhyaloka who are doing remarkably well and I’ve been legally recognised as El Presidente of OBO, but we are still actively looking for a permanent Chairman who will be inheriting a healthy situation. My fellows at Uttaraloka are both doing well but they are quite different to each other. One is an introvert the other an extravert, and me? I’m not sure.