“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.”
“There are very few human beings who receive the truth, complete and staggering, by instant illumination. Most of them acquire it fragment by fragment, on a small scale, by successive developments, cellularly, like a laborious mosaic.”
– Anais Nin
“Whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.”
― Max Ehrmann
I am the light, I am the glory
Within the span of his first illumination period, the SHINING ONE realizes he is able to view all of the future and all of the past in a single glimpse. He literally pays witness to the interconnectedness of all things in the universe. In the midst of his observation, which lasts but a moment yet feels like an eternity, he is also awakened to the great tragedy which lies in wait for him.
Ripples upon the pond
What had begun as a curse was suddenly a blessing as the SHINING ONE is fully awakened for the first time. In his illuminated state he realizes that existence is governed entirely by deterministic laws. A cause brings about an effect, a rain drop upon a pond produces ripples. These ripples meet other ripples caused by other raindrops. The two ripples smash together and merge in a quiet collision. They change and morph each other. Their trajectories are mutually changed forever and cannot be returned to their original state.
Returning and repeating
Contemplation of the rippling metaphor with regard to universal determinism leads the SHINING ONE to push the boundaries of what he is able to observe in his illuminated state. He sees the same pond, and the same raindrops causing the same ripples, crashing into the same ripples merging in the same quiet collisions, repeating forever into the infinite. There is no ending. There is no difference between iterations, the same causes emerge, begetting the same effects. The effects become new causes, which cause new effects. And yet none of it is new. It has happened a million times and will happen a million more. The chain is forever unbroken. He is the chain, and like the chain he is forever unbroken.
Time is the most fantastic illusion
All of time occurs at once. Everything that has ever happened or ever will happen has already happened and happened in a single moment. A million rotations of the inner wheel and not a single click on the outer wheel. It begins and ends in the same moment, and yet there is no beginning and there is no ending. The string is fixed in a loop, a metallic band forged in galactic fires of timelessness, a wheel within a wheel where one contains the other. It is an infinite moment and yet it is finite and limited for nothing is truly infinite.
I am the dungeon, I am the tower
The SHINING ONE sees that it is he who is fixed at the center of the wheel, and that there is no wheel, there is only the SHINING ONE. It is his own existence at the center of everything, and yet there is no periphery. He is all that is and will ever be, and remains fixed, unchanging. This realization is at once beautiful and hideous. He is a shining beacon of divine beauty and he is a hideous gorgon skulking in shadow. He is the cause, and he is the effect. His actions seem to be freely decided but if they are freely decided, they are done so in exactly the same manner, at the same moment, cycling forever like the turning of the inner wheel. He cannot make a different choice, for he makes the same different choice each time. The laws of cause and effect hold everything within their grasp. The wheel is locked within a wheel.
What is there to learn by one who sees everything?