Step 18 Today I Feel the Truth Arising is bringing up memories from the past.
Part of the step reads:
The truth must be fully experienced … It is an experience, and so it is something that is deeply felt. … Truth is something you will feel with your entire body, with your entire being.
This confirms for me my own experience with knowing the Truth so far.
I would like to share an entry from a diary I kept during my first trip to Russia in 1981. I went to Moscow to study Russian for a semester after graduating from university in San Antonio, Texas. This is what I wrote (reproduced verbatim) on February 25, 1981 after walking in one of Moscow’s snowy parks at sunset. I was 23 years old at the time.
The dusky pink sun as it set this evening mirrored my heart, that mystery, that deep hushed silence, the pink quiet, I was completely content just sitting and watching, drinking in the calm and feeling a quiet joy in just being alive. I can’t explain what has happened since I’ve come here, but things have changed. All of a sudden life is more complex, yet clearer and simpler. I am beginning to grasp, experience, and understand feelings and ideas that before were just vague dreams, distant and unrealized. Suddenly my destiny is beginning to take shape before my eyes, I am becoming aware of who I am and what I want out of life. No matter what happens, where I go, what I do, I am me, true to my own purpose, and the things that are dear to me, that make me tick, make my heart beat, make me aware, are the most important. All the other superfluous things in life seem to be falling away and I look into a crystal clear pool, see my reflection, see that I am, see that I am worthwhile. I want responsibility, I want knowledge, I want to find out, want to understand, want to experience.
I feel the truth arising
Thirty-three years later I can say I have manifested in my life the yearnings of my younger self. I feel the truth arising, but now I am conscious of its source, it comes from Knowledge, the Knowledge I am reclaiming as I take Steps to Knowledge.
I recently found out that a poet I discovered in university, Rainer Maria Rilke, and felt a resonance with also first travelled to Russia when he was 23 years old and was deeply affected by it, calling it his “spiritual motherland.”
The article quoted above goes on to say, “On returning from his first trip to Russia, full of deep impressions and planning to move there permanently (a dream that never came true), Rilke suddenly found himself writing poems in Russian.”
Like Rilke, I was deeply affected by my first trip to Russia and felt it was my spiritual homeland.
Like Rilke, I wanted to move to Russia permanently.
Like Rilke, I found myself writing in Russian, although not poetry and not immediately. I did not think I could write in Russian until a few years ago, but I write today in Russian with the same linguistic idiosyncracies as Rilke wrote his Russian poems.
Step 18 “Today I Feel the Truth Arising” ends with:
Throughout the day as well, without doubt or hesitation, pursue your true goal in life. From this true goal will come all of the important things that you will need to accomplish and the great power of vision and discernment that will allow you to find those individuals that you have come into the world to find.
I did not know of this Step thirty-three years ago, but there it amazingly was in my life. Today I am consciously reclaiming it.
Some people may not see the significance or value in the coincidental dates and ages, but I do and I like them, which is why I am sharing Rilke’s story along with my story on this particular day, February 25, 2014.
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