Coffee with T
T loves Costa Coffee, and loves talking of Zen, the mind/brain interface, consciousness and ways of thinking, and these topics please me too. Whence comes Inspiration? What happens when you sever the corpus callosum? His younger brother, who was gay just after “sodomy” ceased to be a criminal offence in England and tried so hard to be straight, is a spiritual medium, and his sister was a homoeopath, and T, a former hypnotherapist, has this wonderfully thoughtful, rational way of dealing with these issues. We dispose of Naive Realism- how would you know if you were living in The Matrix- wonderful film that, the sequels were rubbish- and have such similar interests and perspectives that the conversation is a delight. What do you mean by “I”? Well, there is this physical object, or process, continually taking in or excreting substance and ideas, which being an evolved animal has a strong attachment to its own continuing existence. How could new ideas change brain structures? By reinforcing new pathways through the brain. Well, it happens, we cannot say why. How can I talk about a soul or even an “I”, when if I suddenly stop taking oestradiol I get all emotional, weepy, impulsive, angry, and if I take it again I become more even-tempered? That is a chemical process, surely, rather than an “Individual”.
What I want to discuss is healing, and how I cannot justify it with my rational being: so how just to trust my emotional being? Of course I did that before: transitioning from acting male to expressing myself female makes no sense at all, rationally, apart from the fact that I Wanted to do it. I so want my rational brain to be able to justify healing work, and it can’t. I grew up having to justify everything rationally, being unaware of my feelings.
Have I told you this story? I decided to kill myself (No, he says, I have not told that story. When was that? Oh, years ago, not recently). I got my pills, and I went into my living room to get whisky to wash them down with, because I thought that might make me lose consciousness more quickly and be better able to go through with it. But in my living room I found my bath water flowing through the ceiling. A join in the drainpipe had given way, and the water flowed out. So I called the landlord, and the plumber, and got it dealt with, and after the plumber left the immediate desire to die had gone away. A Synchronicity!
But what about all the people who decided to die and didn’t have something like that to distract them? he asks. Yeah, yeah, I know. Still, that was my Proof of the Existence of God for years. And- why Libya but not Syria? Is that the same question?
This link between the amygdala and the limbic system and the frontal lobe- different voices, then Consciousness, the illusion of the I-
An even more personal story. I get a little weepy-
……………………………..and then I relax.
I went to a Healing Development Group with the Healing Trust. They have a particular procedure, first giving energy to the seven chakras, then to the parts of the body in turn. And I felt my hands grow warm, but when I passed over the leader’s arm, my hands suddenly felt cold. It felt so different. And I did not have the courage to tell her, or anyone until now. Could that be- sensing something? Could it be real?
Actually, now I have shared this story, trusted to share it, I feel- different. More relaxed, and Much, Much Happier. Wonderful. It feels real. I can respect that feeling.
People describe the flow of energy, or Qi, with very precise technical terms, in great detail, similar to the descriptions anatomists use, yet not describing anything an anatomist could observe. It mimics rationalism, but the rationalists can’t accept it. This is the weepy bit- my rational being has to be content with Unknowing. This is the joyous bit- in that Moment, I can trust my feeling.
Out into the sunshine. There is a busker in a dinner jacket, bow tie and fingerless gloves playing the guitar, and I stop to listen. Then Candy recognises me, and we chat with the busker about that time when the violinist played in the railway station- was it New York? Not sure. Candy is almost a stranger, we exchanged a few words when I was working. Now we exchange phone numbers. Impromptu conversations in the street! Not what I am used to. I feel relaxed, more real. He plays Bach. There is a group of rough-looking men four yards away, and one suddenly barks like a dog- RuhRuhRuhRuhRuhRuhRuh- loudly at another- rough looking men, hearing the music.