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LDP FORUM - THE MILE/MARATHON/ULTRASKATE


 

Something Profound  

Ever find yourself right smack dab in the middle of something immensely profound? In one of those situations where everything in the universe just seems to somehow fit together in this mega-precise and beautiful way? It happens to me on occasion, but certainly not as much as I'd like.

The most mind-blowing of these experiences came when my daughter was born. When I first saw her face, it felt like all of eternity crammed itself into that one tiny moment. It was pretty intense. Another experience was in game 5 of the 1995 division series, with the Mariners beating the Yankees in an unbelievable comeback. The energy surge in a stadium filled with 65,000 screaming fans is certainly a beautiful thing. When I was a kid, it happened all the time. Once, when I went over to Amanda Sprenger's** house, who I was totally in love with, and drank apple cider and sat in a dimly lit room and counted how much candy each of us had. (** name changed, 'cause she probably never knew this!)

All this stuff has the same feeling of having that first glimmer of aroused consciousness when you wake up and realize it's Christmas morning! My goal in life is to cruise through the later years of my existence in a constant state of bliss like that. It's the ultimate cosmic groove.

I dig profound. I crave it and seek it, but often find myself struggling to get there. I fully believe that any single moment can crack you over the head with crystal clear, sparkling wonder. The stuff is everywhere. It's learning how to experience it that's the trick.

Where would you look for profound, if you knew it was out there someplace? A lot of folks find it at their neighborhood church. For me, my place of worship is on a skateboard, carving down the sidewalk wrapped in nothing but the raw experience of It All. That's the place that I have learned to depend on, since it will take me to this experience of wonder time and time again. It is meditation- simply being and simply adapting to whatever my environment requests. It could have been any object that took me here, had I studied it with the intensity that I've poured into studying a board on wheels. If you look at it closely enough, every single thing in the universe gives clues to the nature of god. So why not a skateboard? I dig the fact that my god is a funky god.

It's the groove that gets me. Seriously, I can't resist. You know how they say you can hypnotize a chicken if you draw a line in the dirt in front of it? You could hypnotize me with a good kickin' groove. I am probably made up of some of the old energy of some ancient shaman or something, who managed the drum circles on Friday nights around the campfire. Or maybe my body is made up from the recycled atoms of a sexy disco machine, and I was just born to boogie down. Possibly, it's that I've got no rhythm at all, and that's why it's all so appealing. Ya know- maybe it's a mix of all these things.

The coolest thing about the universe is that it's knotted up in a total paradox. It has to be that way, because if it weren't, there would actually be things called "answers." But as far as I can tell, no one has ever had an answer that couldn't be refuted by a total fool, a total genius, or a good trial lawyer.

For precisely this reason, things that are profound are usually disguised as simple and/or stupid. They're called the basics. When you were 2 or 3 years old, you were probably fascinated with them. But now, you just take them for granted. Anything that doesn't require much thought gets a pretty bad rap these days. We're supposed to worship reason and logic like they are the ultimate achievement of humanity and the universe. But if you ask me, those things are nothing more than interpretations and translations of what the universe is really saying. When we interpret, we lose some of the original meaning, When we translate, we lose even more. And if you believe that the whole is always greater than the sum of its parts, you can see that we've really lost a significant chunk of meaning. And now you're probably wondering where I'm going with this.

When I get on my skateboard, and get into a groove, and start carving up a good little rhythm, I'm usually not thinking anything at all. I'm aware and focused, but my mind is at a standstill. I've discovered that for me, this is the quickest way to an experience that could be classified as profound. I can't get there by thinking and trying to understand. It's an experience, and the only way I can get there is by shutting my mind off. That's an interesting thing. If you take that to it's natural conclusion, the deepest, heaviest ideas that we are capable of comprehending are made available to us not as concepts, but instead as experiences.

The best thing is that this experience is not only meaningful when I'm in a skateboard groove, but it preps me for regular life as well. Whether I am aware of it or not, I am looking for those grooves when I step off the board and go to work, or dance with the kids, or play wiffle ball in the backyard. I apply the same principles I learn on the skateboard to my life. And when it's all taken together, I find myself totally amped about all the adventures that are on the verge of unfolding.

 

©Dec.2004, derek munson

DEREK MUNSON