Rabbit Hole Tether


27 December 2006








It had begun happening more frequently and it scared him.


A tool and a good tool too.


Whenever he had a problem to solve, a step process to develop, an assembly or disassembly, the practice of a speech or just for mental exploration and mediation, he would visualize, place himself, inside his mind and be there.


The first time it happened, he was more amazed than frightened. He had gone deep inside his visualization on a particular problem and somehow from there had gone deeper down the rabbit hole onto another problem, thought stream and then another and another and it was only when some loud sound pulled him back up the rabbit hole did he return to his body and the reality it existed in. A tether: a rabbit hole tether. He had never thought about it: his mind was tethered to his body and good thing too. What if he went so far down the rabbit hole, he got lost and could not find his way back?


At first the tether was reassuring and let him continue to go deeper and deeper down the rabbit hole to realms and worlds that only his mind’s, mind’s, mind could have thought of. But recently the alarm of his body reality had become harder and harder to hear, to alert him that it was time to return, like some watch on a deep sea diver and he become scared. What if he went too far and could not get back to the surface?


And so he stopped using his very best problem solving tool or at least cut back on its use and whenever his mind began going deeper into the rabbit hole, he would stop and let his body reality tether pull him back to the space and time he knew was real.


Then one day, the pain came and stayed and stayed: cancer. Operations, chemotherapy, drugs, none of it helped much and so he began once again going down the rabbit hole of his mind. Deeper and deeper into strange places that did not resemble his body reality at all and in which his body and its pain were not a part of at all, but in the end, he was still pulled back up via the tether and to the pain of his body.


Then one day, while asleep in a dream, out walking in some field of grass, he stumbled upon a rabbit hole and without a moment’s thought, jumped in, feet first. Down and down he went: into and out of the center of stars; past numerous galaxies; looking out through the eyes of a sea gull down upon an empty, timeless, ocean beach, deep dark green water crashing, pale yellow sky overhead; dreams, all the dreams he ever had all, all overlaid like multiple layers of paint on the wall of some old, old house; into the consciousness of  barnyard door and watching time move by; feeling the mind of the hive, a part of and not separate and then somehow, he could feel the tether was stretching, becoming very, very thin and it seemed all right to him and without any more warning and hardly a whisper, the tether simply pulled apart like taffy stretched too far and he was gone.


The alarm sounded at the nurse’s station but it was too late: his heart would not start no matter what they did. He was gone. Yes, he was gone but not like they thought.


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