Life As A Research Project | Transpersonal Experiences In Ordinary Settings
What is the experience of being human – the one we wish to inquiry into, investigate, experiment with, or examine? We like to believe that we are living an ordinary life in an ordinary world, but are we really living an ordinary life?
Examining our life under a “transpersonal lens” may be thought of as living a self-examined life. And, a life which is understood is a life lived.
“At birth, when we first opened our eyes, the surprises and explorations began.” – Rosemarie Anderson
The verb “research” has its roots in the French verb rechercher, which means to go about seeking.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines this “seeking” in three ways:
1) careful or diligent search;
2) studious inquiry or examination, especially: investigation or experimentation aimed at the discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories or laws in the light of new facts, or practical application of such new or revised theories or laws;
3) the collection of information about a particular subject.
My Life Story – A Little Background
Today, I want to share a few of my transpersonal life experiences. I am happy to do so and hope to offer myself as much as I can. This is my answer to my seeking.
As many of you longtime readers probably know that I am a polymath. But among many things that I do, I am particularly passionate about writing, exploring the natural truths, practical philosophy, listening under the noise, being a healer of hearts (nothing supernatural), and traveling the world and soaking in the essence and greater exposure to this thing we call – “humanity”.
I am a sensitive type with a capacity to handle a lot of emotions and bodily sensations. I find this to be both as my gift and as a source of emotional-pain.
Throughout my life, I have been a deeply spiritual person. I have witnessed in my own life unfold in mysterious and often unpredictable, twisted ways. To me, I am an example of “the path has chosen you and you are just a soul responding to your calling.”
In my short life, I have been on several contrasting poles: I was in utter destitution during 2009-10, literally living on $1 a day in Fargo, North Dakota and Nevada City, California. I have enjoyed earning a lot of money through my IT consulting business.
I have been fired from jobs and I have hired people (I still do). I have experienced failed relationships on levels of being traumatic and currently I am in a happy and loving relationship. Life has been a constant teacher for me.
Transpersonal Experiences In Ordinary Settings
There are several life events and synchronistic moments that I could list as a transformative experience for me but nothing comes to my mind as particularly strong at this time other than my last days with my father.
I’ll start here.
Unexpected Death of My Father from Cancer
My first transformative experience may appear distressing and downing but there is no greater teacher of life than death.
On Jan 24, 2016, my father (otherwise a healthy, working, functioning man) was diagnosed with stage IV stomach cancer with bone mets. He passed away on March 5th, 2016. I was with my father during this whole time. And there is nothing more powerful and transformative than caring for a terminally-ill person.
I would actually skip getting into the details here because this is so recent that it is hard for me to concisely write down without getting into the details. But, just to give you enough information to hang on, I am planning a 60 minutes documentary and a book “Cancer In Your Family: Caring For A Family Member & What Does It Mean For You.”
Becoming a Born Again Christian
Accepting a faith, changing your religion or starting a new practice are common day experiences. What makes religion so strong is the transformative power that it has over individuals through mystical and sometimes supernatural experiences.
I was born in a Hindu family but never took Hinduism seriously. I was an agnostic in a comfortable way. I was a curious mind but I was not actively looking for God. At age 18, things changed. I became a born-again Christian in New Delhi, India.
The Word of God, Jesus, my Spirit, everything became real. As real as the world surrounding me. I was transformed overnight. Cursing, porn, envy, anxiety – anything worldly – everything was gone.
There was no struggle on giving up the world. It was as if the burden of sin was lifted off of me. God was real to me. My heart was overjoyed and my life seemed immensely purposeful.
Becoming a Human & Leaving the Christian Jesus
In early 2010, I was struggling to afford McDonald’s $1 burger for my dinner. I was still digesting a certain hurtful events such as my fake-friends cheating me of my car, possessions, and respectfully kicking me out of my house (because I could not afford the rent), my girlfriend going cold turkey, and my mobile account going into collection because of other folks who did not pay their bills and I was left alone with the collection because the line was on my name.
Life was crazy and I was forced to live day by day. I became comfortable with just me being there – at any moment. Me and nothing else.
During those days, I was translating certain classical hymns into Hindi language for some local churches in India and I was still regular in the church. But something was happening inside me, inside my heart. My spirit was no longer feeling free in the church and its restrictive dogma. The people were nice and they meant good to me and towards the outside world, but they were living within a walled enclave of tremendous self-deceive.
The church going faithful saints were more dependent on each other (in the name of One Body of Christ) than on God or their inner guidance. Bible was interpreted from a standpoint of “all or nothing.”
Islam has this same issue. And orthodox Jews too. This is where Jihadist or any religious extremist get it wrong. Believe it all, literally or believe in nothing. This is plain wrong. This is infact opposite of what actually happened with the Bible itself. From Adam to Abraham to Moses to Jesus. Things changed constantly, even the god(s) changed.
Anyways, that’s a topic for another post. (Leave me your thoughts in the comments below)
One day, I picked up a book of poems from Rumi translated by Coleman Barks. The pages, the words, the flow of heart, the transcendental appeal of Rumi’s words broke my decade long Christian shield.
Jesus was still there but now as a human. A human who attained Godhood. As a godly human who was good, who was god! The Bible was still there but as a guide, a description of the journey of few faithful souls in human history.
In coming months, I stumbled upon Gurdjieff (and his Fourth Way), on Carl Jung’s work on inner landscaper of mind, Ra Uru Hu and his work on Astro-psychology, Astrology, Edgar Cayce, Sufi mystics and ancient Christian, Jew and Hindu saints. My life was not the same after this.
Today, I am living this third life. I call my natural birth as my first life, my Christina life as my second life, and now as a spiritual being my third incarnation.
I am sure there are things yet to explore, taste and learn. But, now being an open heart, I welcome change with joy and not with fear or dismay. I love studying our human journey, the evolution of life in this cosmos, exploring and sharing with others our purpose on this planet – our home – the earth.
I am currently working on publishing two poetry collection and one poetry handbook. My first poetry book Naked Soul: The Erotic Love Poems did fairly well upon launch and reached #1 on Amazon. It has been doing well ever since.
I am excited to make my slow transition into a full-time writing and traveling career. I am here to explore the outer world and the inner world and to share with others what I find.
I’ll continue this discussion in an another post. For now, I feel, it is a good introduction and now I turn the mic to you. I want to listen what you have to share.