Everything Matters, Including Whisky, Fairy Pools and Waterfalls

I’m in Scotland now, trekking with my man through my ancestral homeland, playing with nature spirits and exploring the nuances of scotch whisky (ah, for the love of peat!).

It’s a trip in which an everything matters epiphany arrived while dipping my toes into an icy fresh highland river. But first, the back story.

The last two months I’ve been playing editor at elephant journal’s love section, where finding and cultivating new talent turns out to be as intrinsically rewarding as writing my own pieces. It’s odd to discover something new about my personality all these 50 years later–I am a team player and I love to help other artists succeed. For some reason I always imagined this personality to be a soloist. When you no longer really believe the “I” point of view, it seems (at least here) that personality is entirely mutable–but don’t tell an astrologer or Myers-Briggs psychologist that the constellation of traits we assume ourselves to be can rearrange itself into brand new formations. That would mean we are not who we think we are.

But back to the everything matters insight. I was walking up a gentle hill in Brittle Glen on the island of Skye, heading to the “fairy pools” when a download struck. You know, the sort of ah-ha moment that tries to condense after the fact, into words, just so you can vainly attempt to communicate to others an epiphany. Like this attempt.

So here goes. In the land of nothing matters. where an October awakening deposited me, there is a lush detachment that feels like relief. When clattering mind messages that used to bother with right and wrong—and most of all with me and mine—came to a screeching stop, freedom came rushing in. Freedom is the natural consequence of a worry-free, peace-filled quietude. It’s a soaring kind of beingness, one that takes in a birds-eye, if not spaceship view, of reality.

I called it the vastness. My consciousness had expanded into infinite nothingness and it was sort of like seeing the goings on of the people around me from outer space. All the fretting and upsets and concerns of my friends’ lives, the soap-opera drama of mortal existence, was remote–the way cars look like ants from an airplane, the contours of people’s lives were reduced to dot-sized movements in the vast view of a dispersed consciousness. (No wonder I thought at times I’d experienced a stroke–my brain was clearly operating from a different mix of neurotransmitters than usual).

An astute awakened writer friend of mine, Sam Watts, warned me months ago that after an awakening comes an integration. I would say it’s more like breathing than integrating, a diaphragmatic movement of expansion and contraction. If the alchemical maxim is true, as above so below, then all of life hints there is an ebb for every flow, a particle for every wave, an in for every out.

So, ten months later, the nothing matters has become everything matters. And yet, they are the same truth and lead to the same place. Because when nothing matters, there is no room for comparison and conflict, for right and wrong. The same is true of everything matters. But the qualitative experience is that the peace of nothing matters is a different flavor or texture from the peace of everything matters.

Now, I am immersed deeply and vibrantly in the world. I am not above it all, in spaceship vastness but rather inside it all, from a place of delightful intimate engagement. Here, it’s a warm, wet and sensual experience of beingness rather than the initial cool, dry, disembodied version post-awakening. It could be called transcendent versus immanent. But labels don’t tell the truth of it, and never will.

And while the transcendent and immanent are simply sides of the same coin, before awakening, in mystical experiences of the transcendent, I assumed I was the character that moved from the boundaries of my body to the vast still spaciousness. Or in happenings of profound embodiment, tantric sexual moments for instance, I mistakenly thought I was the person who felt the ecstasy. Back then, the illusion was still in place—it was I who suffered sometimes and was free from suffering at others, who was intermittently troubled or blissful.

Now it’s clear I am not the person, I am the movement—from infinite to finite, from vast to microscopic, from ebb to flow. I probably need a poem to capture this truth, a Rumi-style rant. Let me give an ad-lib try (no dress rehearsal here).

I am the animating
force, the wind
that rustles leaves
blows rain inland,
bends the grass and
churns the sea.

I am the breath
that breathes
You, and Everything
Into existence

I am that which moves
And yet, is eternally still.

Dancing in one place,
turning in all places
spinning out worlds
twirling in emptiness.

I am the still wind.

Awareness is here (sipping on peaty paradox, from the land of fairies and fine scotch).

Lori Ann







PS: Did you know I’ve started a weekly 3-minute video blog? It’s free, fun and magical. Curious? Then subscribe here. 

16 thoughts on “Everything Matters, Including Whisky, Fairy Pools and Waterfalls

  1. Pingback: Why Shakti Matters | The Awakened Dreamer

  2. Dana Fuhrman

    Wow. A kindred spirit. This post spoke to me more than anything I have read in awhile. Thank you for sharing. And so beautifully written! I love those feelings of oneness that I connect to. Sometimes I feel like I want to stay there. It feels like floating. Then it always seems I come back to my human experiences… for that is why I am here. To feel it all. The “good” and the “bad”, the oneness and the suffering.


  3. Sam Watts

    That’s it, Lori!

    Allow yourself to appreciate the hell out of life. Open your senses completely. Dive in head-first, and any remaining conditioning will spontaneously release itself, revealing its nature as neither Lori nor not-Lori.

    The only practice at this point is to open, allow, and appreciate.



  4. Wayne (Wirs)

    That shift from Emptiness to Fullness to both is something isn’t it? I was lucky in that I was blogging the before, during and after awakening (and still do) so it makes it easy for me to look up all the changes.

    For example an Emptiness post (two months after awakening): http://waynewirs.com/2009/waiting-by-the-lake/ and an example of a Fullness post (two years after awakening): http://waynewirs.com/2011/the-mantra-of-radiance/

    Huge difference. Awakening is just the stepping through the gate-less gate. There’s a whole new world on the “other side” as you are finding out. Keep posting your insights!


  5. Simply Begin

    Awesome! Awesome! Awesome!

    Scotch kicks ass and all the so called enlightened, spiritual teacher guru types that tell you drinking whiskey is BAD/WRONG…..

    Hugs!!!! 😀

    PS: you go girl!!!


  6. Robin Rice

    This is also where I live… in the true duality, where nothing matters, and I am “not here,” and yet SINCE I AM HERE, everything matters. Toasting you there my beloved rocking chair sister! Oh the places we will/won’t go! SMILE


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.