"A Condition of the Sea"
Just got back yesterday from four days at Tybee Island, on the Georgia coast. The deadly rays of Amon-Ra were way too oppressive during the day (temps were in the high 90’s and low 100’s Fahrenheit, and Heat Advisories were in effect), so we swam in the ocean in the mornings and early evenings, and headed into Savannah for the air-conditioned coffeehouses during the days. (Favorites: The Sentient Bean and Gallery Espresso.) We also visited some of the art galleries and shops, including A. T. Hun's (where I bought two prints by the mystical artist Brian Macgregor), and Moondance, where I bought a beautiful little unikite stone. And, of course, we partook of the excellent seafood (“Local Shrimp!” read many of the ads). The best crabcakes were at the funky little waterside Cafe Loco.
I had not been to the ocean in about two years, and I was starting to really miss it. Over the years I’ve had several mystical experiences while floating in the ocean. (I pity those poor muscular dudes who don’t have enough bodyfat to allow them to float.) This week I spent many happy hours floating, allowing myself to rest in the sea’s salty arms, at times silently doing mantra meditation or the Sufi elemental breaths (outlined in Part 2 of this lesson from the Sufi Healing Order), at other times just floating, mindfully aware of the vibrant life around me.
My favorite time was spent alone in the ocean one evening, between moonrise and sunset. Looking out over the horizon I could see the almost-full moon, large and glowing, casting rays of moonshine over the waves of the ocean as they gained intensity for high tide. I'm pretty sure I heard the Flipper-like chirping of dolphins, although I didn't see any. Looking back toward the beach I could see the setting sun, its rays bursting up through the salmon-colored clouds in a perfect V-shape, a brilliant “light show” from the Artisan of wind and waves.
“Man is a condition of God as a wave is a condition of the sea.”
– Hazrat Inayat Khan
“Can you see that one easily slips into identifying oneself as a discrete individual, oblivious that we are part of the whole. Just as Hazrat Inayat Khan points out, a wave has no existence on its own, it is a condition of the sea, so likewise we are a condition of the Totality of God.”
– Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan