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22 May, 2008

Brain on Fire

The proper word is probably "imbas", but not many people know that one. (Filidecht practitioner Erynn Laurie defines Imbas thus in her sidebar: "Imbas is an Old Irish word meaning poetic inspiration, with overtones of ecstatic mysticism." She has a whole entry about it too.)

My brain is on fire.

Do you know that feeling? There's that sudden arclight spark, just a moment, that illuminates everything, and suddenly all the connections are clear, for just a moment, just a searing moment that burns into the mind's shape of the world and goes again like lightning, leaving afterimages to taste and chase.

My brain is on fire.

I spent two years studying the Anderson Feri Tradition with Thorn Coyle, finishing in spring of 2007. And spent the following year integrating, building on what I learned there, sorting myself out. And, after some consultations about balancing my responsibilities and needs, I have taken up studying with Thorn again, as of last night.

My brain is on fire.

The first work for this study was meditation on a particular poem written by Victor Anderson, a man not unacquainted with imbas. And I, trying to catch up with my classmates, read it, and ...

My brain is on fire.

My brain is on fire in one of those ways that is so intensely, individually tuned to who I am and where I came from. I can chase the threads of this spark back to the winter of 1985, in one case, sitting with an issue of Sky and Telescope in my lap reading about the approach of Halley's Comet. I can track it to looking for the divine in the night sky and finding Her, a process that began sometime in my mid-teens as a conscious process. I can track it to the beginning of this month, when the answer I gave when asked to give divination was "It is bright light in darkness."

My brain is on fire.

It is on fire with the dance of light and dark, the starkest Twins. It is on fire with the metaphysics of the black body radiation curve. It is on fire with the loving nature of finitude and the way illumination swallows gloom. It is on fire, on fire, on fire.

I tried to explain what's in my mind to my husband, shine it all out, the way it is on fire, and he smiled at me and told me I was cute.

You can only shine what you have.

And feel such peace and absolute
The stillness still that doesn't end
But slowly drifts into sleep
The stars are the greatest thing you've ever seen
And they're there for you
For you alone you are the everything

-- R. E. M., "You Are The Everything"


Anonymous said...

Sounds a bit like what I call project fever, except it isn't a project.

I remember a few moments like that. Far too far in between, but that's part of what makes the dazzle dazzling.

While I'm impressed by the magnitude of whatever you're about to give birth to, I'm hoping to find out what, exactly, it is. If it can be transmitted in blog form, of course.

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