In the process of letting go (a euphemism for aging) I’ve grown more conversant with my inner workings. Organs, nerves, limbs, skin, circulatory systems, hairline–we’ve all befriended each other. For instance, on a recent road trip miles from anywhere, my bladder urged me to pull over. I squatted (a humble pose if there ever was one) and waved cheerfully at the driver of the pick-up that happened by. She waved back. A warm calm spread throughout my body as my bladder and I drove on home.
Some of us think of creation as parts of The Body. Others are more exclusive about who’s in and who’s out; what’s to be honored, who’s to be enslaved. These are ego-based pretendings, wrong-headed derivations. In the Oneness, every molecule has a voice. For instance, when stubbed, the oft-overlooked third toe suddenly takes center stage.
This is the kind of pondering that almost always guarantees a visit from God. Sure enough. She’s arrived on the west wind with a flood-inducing chinook on her tail.
“Why, hello there, God,” I say. “What a nice surprise. C’mon in.” My automatic hospitality reminds me of a poem my grandmother had on her kitchen wall:
Guest, you are welcome here. Be at your ease.
Get up when you’re ready. Go to bed when you please.
We’re happy to share with you, such as we’ve got,
The leaks in the roof and the soup in the pot.
You don’t have to thank us or laugh at our jokes.
Sit deep and come often. You’re one of the folks.
I memorized the rhyme, but I didn’t know what it meant to sit deep, and I didn’t like people partaking of my grandmother’s kindness. I wanted her all to myself. Now, I want God all to myself. I want singular adoration, endless comfort, and permission to be at my ease forever without the hassles of caring for others.
“Sorry,” God says. “Doesn’t work that way.” We gaze at the fire. She strokes her chin. “If you had a choice, which part of The Body would you be?”
I chew my thumb and think. Brain, eyes, ears all come to mind, but they’re too obvious. “Bladder,” I say. “I’d be the mop bucket.”
God laughs. “You know you’d have to cooperate with the sphincter, right?”
“Yeah,” I say. “I’ve known that for a very long time.” I raise my right hand. “I do hereby solemnly swear to love and honor the sphincters of the world. My own and others.”
I expect God to chuckle, but instead, I realize we are sitting deep; God and me. And I see that nothing functions without cooperation and mutual respect, internally or out there in the nasty, brutal, fractured Oneness we live within. I know I’m not alone, but sometimes I wish I were.