Nondual Zen Article:

Embracing My Inner Crone

nondual title

Embracing My Inner Crone
by Kathleen Sutherland

I've been aware lately that nothing is going on. There are no events, no circumstances, no situations that need resolving. There is no bad news or good news. There is nothing new at all--except experience. There is always experience, and there is only experience. It is ever changing against the backdrop of the stillness of my Self. That keeps it interesting. There are new scenes, appearances of new characters, or the reappearance of old characters. There's always something to engage My eternal attention.

It's such a peaceful world when seen as pure experience. I've been practicing letting go of fear this month, and I've found it helpful to remember that there are no real threats "out there." I deal with chronic pain, and it scares me sometimes to feel how malfunctioning the nerves are, sending weird buzzing and painful signals without any underlying physical cause. But when I remember that there is just an experience of unpleasant stimuli, that in fact there is no body, there are no nerves (and thus nothing to malfunction), then I can let go of the fear and simply be with this feeling, this experience.

A friend of mine recently confided in me her fears of aging: of becoming invisible, unattractive, less valued by society. I understood, of course, being 55. But my Real view was, "How cool that we will have the experience of morphing into old women (assuming the body survives)." Old age and the suffering that it may bring, when it is seen to be as unreal as it is, will just be an intriguing experience. I shared witih her that I have a vision in my mind's eye of being a wise old crone in a medieval village, limping around (due to pain), but respected, loved and consulted by those who value wisdom. This is not the archetypal experience of a goddess, who is eternally young and beautiful, but it is nevertheless an archetype that this world apparently needs, as it so often manifests.

My friend thought of all the wisdom she has to offer, in particular from having survived leukemia 15 years ago. She enthusiastically said, "I'll think of you as that old crone, and of myself as "Lady Lazurus." My initial reaction was, Hey, I'm not sure I'm quite ready to fully embrace cronedom. But my wiser self (my inner crone) simply responded, "Cool!" My true self knows that there is no body to age, no body to lose the status and privileges of youth, and no one even to gain the wisdom of old age. But I'm happy to watch the show, enjoying it from the unique pinpoint location of this unit.

Nothing is happening. Nothing ever did happen, and nothing ever will. There is only here and now. There is only Me, who looks on this illusory show through 7.5 billion sets of eyes (or other senses if I'm having the experience of being blind) on this planet alone. There are infinite types of species and many other worlds, most likely. All this arises to offer an infinitude of experiences for Me. I am loving it all, because I know there's simply nothing to it.