Unveiling Reality

Mar 13, 2024

A Walk Into the Depths of Being

The night seemed unusually dark given that the moon was nearly full. Maybe it was the mist which had only grown thicker since the man left for his evening walk on a narrow little trail through the winding hills just down from his house. This is the trail he would take when his mind was troubled because the feeling of the forest around him usually offered some solace. Not this night.

As he walked down the road he tried to forget the troubles of work and his growing anxiety with the state of the world. It felt like he was carrying this great burden that he could not put down. The things in his life that used to put his mind at ease and bring some joy no longer did their job.

There was a growing dissatisfaction deep within him which had become impossible to ignore. If he were being honest with himself he would have to admit that he secretly wondered if he might be going crazy. Yet all he really wanted was some peace.

But then there was the question.

It started in the back of his mind more as a feeling of curiosity. Over time that feeling became more and more persistent until it came into focus. The feeling was a question. At first all he could discern was a deep longing for something, he knew not what. As he spent more time exploring the feeling, slowly the question came into focus — What is real? Is this life and the world I’ve been living in truly reality?

Like most people the man lived a typical life. He worked and payed his taxes. He spent time with friends and pursued his interests. He told himself that he was content with his life. It wasn’t perfect but good enough.

However there had always been doubt in some hidden away part of his mind that maybe things aren’t really the way they seem. The doubt, even when he was not conscious of it, ate away at his so called ‘normal’ life like acid dissolving metal.

The question had a deeper aspect to it which he discovered after spending some time pondering it. The deeper question wasn’t just ‘what is real’? But it boiled down to — What am I? He thought he knew who he was but his identity was based on all of his assumptions about his life being real and he had serious doubts about that! The question became a burning desire to discover or validate for himself, the truth of his life.

This had been building for some time but tonight something was different. He felt a pressure within himself. Everything was unbelievably intense like he had never felt before. The feeling of dissatisfaction, the curiosity and the question had come together as one overwhelming feeling sweeping through his mind and body. The pressure became so strong that he didn’t know if he could hold himself together for an instant longer, it was as if he was coming apart from the inside.

Just as he felt he might explode from the pressure, it suddenly diminished by expanding outward. His attention was then drawn to the world around him, a world which appeared unfamiliar and confusing causing some fear to arise. The mist was nearly solid now and he could not clearly see the forest around him as the mist swallowed all but the ghostly silhouettes of trees. Beams of milky white light shown down like streetlights from the moon above.

He noticed his footsteps made no sound as if he was walking on a bed of cotton. It was disconcerting to question his reality while not feeling the familiar solidity and comfort of the world around him. He took a few more hesitant steps feeling a bit bewildered and shaky from his shifting experience though he was determined to stay calm and remain curious. With a few more steps he found himself illuminated by one of the moonbeams and he froze.

At that moment everything stopped. He couldn’t move. The illumination of the mist became all encompassing and was all that he could perceive externally. When he closed his eyes he was surprised to see the same illumination, a subtle diffuse but comforting light with the consistency of mist. The feelings of fear and confusion which had been there before were gone. The milky mist brought with it a feeling of comfort and safety which baffled his mind because it could not be explained.

Before he could take another breath, the subtle light of the mist lit up in a flash of intensity that was almost blinding. There was only the most intense brilliance, eyes open or closed. The brilliance overshadowed everything. It was all he could perceive. It had become everything and it was like a thousand suns had burst in front of him.

When the brilliance reached its peak he heard a voice. It seemed to come from all directions at once. It wasn’t really a sound but something he perceived with senses he didn’t know he had. The voice had one message in it — I AM. Those two words which he had not perceived as words but more as a transmission reverberated through his entire being which by now wasn’t limited to his body.

The moment he heard those words one last thing fell away. Him. There was no longer a sense of being this troubled man walking down a trail to forget his troubles. There was just… Well… He didn’t know what it was but he knew it was the answer to his questions. He knew what was real and who he was yet there was no him anymore.

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He burst out laughing while tears streamed down his face uncontrollably.

The burden he had been carrying for so long was gone. Not really gone more like exposed to be a lie which he had allowed himself to believe for far too long.

There had never really been a burden.

What he now felt he was — he knew — he had always been. He just didn’t realize it because he took the life he was experiencing at face value. He now saw it for the fleeting dream that it was and it no longer fooled him.

As he walked back home he enjoyed the crisp air, the humming of the crickets and the gentle breeze like never before…all was well and everything was unfolding as it should.

Thanks for reading! In addition to being a technologist, Colin writes about life from the heart and topics involving peace, mindfulness, freedom and spirituality. He holds a masters degree in psycholgy and has worked as a mindfulness based counselor.


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