ALL IS ONE AND ONE IS ALL
The first time I can remember it happening clearly I was sitting in my Giving Tree and daydreaming, and I remember being very at peace. I had closed my eyes and let the gentle breeze flow through my hair. And that's really all there was to it. It was just a serene sense of calm and I wanted to feel everything around me. I could tell that there were several birds in the same tree as me, and I could feel the branches swaying around me, and the leaves rustling. I could feel all their music. That music was the constant presence and essence I long to touch and reach out for, ever-flowing through everything around me.
When you close your eyes, try to feel the heartbeat of the ones around you. This is the same pulse as the tree, the birds, and even a sea of people screaming. Or not screaming. Perhaps they are just holding your hand.
I don't know what to call this essence. Is it love perhaps? Is it the soul of these beings? Just my environment? I don't know. I like to call it music because I hear it very clearly and it inspires me and makes me feel like I'm part of something bigger. That I'm not just one man.
Actually, of course I am just one man, but I mean to say that I'm not alone. It makes me feel like I have a family. That there is more to life than this solitary confinement in one vessel. Maybe this is why I like traveling so much, meeting new people, experiencing new cultures, and everything that this world has to offer. It makes me feel closer to the music. The older I become, the music has become more ... more present somehow.
And so, as I sat there in my tree in tune with the music around me, I began to feel the pulse, the rhythm, the veins within me, the roots in the ground, the way little critters meandered up my branches, the way the setting sun on the top-most leaves heated me. The steady pulse drew water from the ground. The rhythm in the leaves complimented it. The wind blew a melody. It was so very clear, I could feel all of it. It was part of me and I was a part of it, and in that moment I knew we were indistinguishable. We are one, and one is all.
I can't explain the feeling any other way than saying I was the tree. And I know that it's a crazy and absolutely bonkers thing to say -- I know that when I say these things out loud nobody understands -- so I don't know how I knew it, but I was the tree.
I tried very hard to stopper that feeling in trying to put down on paper the notes I hear, so that I can share this feeling and explain to other people that there really is more to life, and it is beautiful. And maybe they'll really understand me this time, because words are not enough. Never enough to capture this ethereal majesty of connecting to another soul.
Like I said, this is hard to explain. But for many years I could hear the music of the world getting louder. The music I make is only an echo. But I'm sharing pieces of my own soul though it, so that I can touch this world the way it touches me.
The second time I can say with certainty that I escaped -- of course at the time I didn't know it -- was several years later. On a beautiful summer day I was singing a tune with a sparrow by an open window. My friend was perched on the sill by my elbow and we whistled back and forth to one another. I rested my head in the crook of my arms and drifted off to into my very own Neverland...
I was alive. Very alive. I had wings and a nest and when the man by the window had fallen asleep I glided off towards the sunset to discover his land. I had traveled it many times. There was the pond, and bronze statues, and the nature trails. And there was even my other friend, the one the man liked to call The Giving Tree.
So this time I had flown away from my office window, over the manicured lawns, and taken refuge in my special tree. Again, I was myself and I was the sparrow at the same time. And I know that sounds crazy. It still sounds a bit crazy to me too when I try and explain it with words. But if I look into my heart, there's no explanation needed at all. We were one.
At first it's like stepping into a universal consciousness. I can feel the emotions and thoughts of everything around me. And most of the time they all play as one. It's a beautiful melody. But over time, I've been able to pick out individuals out of the crowd and listen to only their music. And in those times, I can feel a completely other place surround me, swallow up my senses, and if I concentrate I can see through those other pair of eyes. That is the strangest magic I have discovered this world holds.
The soul is a stream of consciousness and the beings we touch we forever become a part of.
Over the years it has become second nature to me to drift into another being when I fall asleep. Sometimes even when I'm awake. I can feel that I am in two places at once. I simply step into the stream of music that is ever-present and everlasting.
One day I woke up to find I had fallen asleep over my desk listening to my own music. Apparently. Only, when I looked down I found that it wasn't my desk, and more disturbing still, these were not my hands that were gripping the ledge of it in white-knuckled panic. These hands had distinct pink nailpolish. Yeah, definitely not mine. And then when I finally turned around, I was met with an entire wall plastered in pictures of myself. I had woken up not only in a teenage girl's bedroom, but in her body as well.
I can feel them there beside me, like a security blanket in the same head, it's just that I've got momentary control over their body. The funniest thing about love is that they don't seem to mind sharing. And they even help me along with my day. If I get stuck in any awkward or unfamiliar situations they're right there to whisper in my ear that, "Michael, that's my mother, of course I know her -- call her Mom and pretend you're kidding before she freaks out," or, "Michael, you're overcooking the eggs, trust me," or even the snide, "Sorry Michael, I know my job sucks -- grin and bear it, buddy!"
When I died... Yes, it was unexpected. But it was a final escape. Meaning, I was no longer confined to one body. I'm able to travel the world through the people and creatures I made a connection with while I was alive. I create new friendships and discover their world through their eyes; I live within them all.
They say that I am immortal now. I wish it were true, but I know that I am only alive as long as what I have created keeps touching new souls. I pray that my music will never die, because when it does, I die also.
There was a period in my life when I was younger, when I used to think, there must be more to life than this.
There is more to life. Escape is everywhere the music flows. We just have to love enough.
No one can quite say what the creative process is, because I have nothing to do with it almost, 'cause it's created in space. It's God's work, not mine. -- MJ
You've heard the expression, music of the spheres? Well, that's a very literal phrase. In the Gospels, we read, "And the Lord God made man from the dust of the earth and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." That breath of life to me is the music of life and it permeates every fiber of creation. -- MJ
Music has been my outlet, my gift to all of the lovers in this world. Through it — my music, I know I will live forever. -- MJ