Things are forever altered when the Universe notices you exist and decides to prove it to you.
My own initial brush with the Divine was rather like Douglas Adams’ Total Perspective Vortex…except there was no fairy cake waiting for me. I did get aftercare of a sort, but I’m still not really certain if anyone around me understood what happened. Frankly, I doubt I could explain it to them in a way they’d comprehend and since I no longer see those people I guess it doesn’t matter.
The problem with ecstasy…that transcendent experience that alters one to the core…is that it is, well, ecstatic. On its face, ecstasy doesn’t really make a whole lot of logical sense – it is entirely an emotional, spiritual, world-altering THING. Typically, the only people that understand my ramblings about it are those that have also experienced it in some way. And, therein lies the rub: it is nearly impossible to prepare someone for what may happen, or explain the experience in some sort of sensical way.
(A slight digression here, but if “nonsensical” is a word, why isn’t “sensical” a word???)
Ecstasy is defined as the following (courtesy of Dictionary.com):
- rapturous delight
an overpowering emotion or exaltation; a state of sudden, intense feeling.
the frenzy of poetic inspiration.
mental transport or rapture from the contemplation of divine things.
For any of these definitions to make sense, one has to have a basic understanding of some other things that are difficult to explain – rapture, exaltation, frenzies of inspiration, mental transport. Like ecstasy, these other words used to describe it don’t really get to the heart of the matter of their own definitions, let alone the definition of another word. So, really, going to the dictionary won’t help you.
(I have a mini-rant about the use of dictionary definitions once one is out of grade school, but we’ll leave that for another time.)
In order to describe ecstasy to those that have not experienced it, I’m going to try to break my ecstatic experience down into several parts that can be explained in the hope that this will render the whole mostly understandable.
- The catalyst (i.e. What was done to trigger the ecstasy).
- The reaction (i.e. What happened once ecstasy was triggered).
- The aftermath (i.e. What happened after ecstasy was complete).
From my own experience, the catalyst for ecstasy is an action through which one’s mental state is altered. Mind alteration can be the desired goal of such action, but it does not have to be.
With that in mind, all of the following have the potential to be catalysts, depending on the individual involved:
- Ingesting substances known for mind-altering properties
- Kink (sex- and non-sex-related)
- Etc, etc, etc.
This is the difficult piece, honestly, so I will attempt to put my own reaction into words.
I hang there, part of my mind focused on the room around me but the other part completely engulfed by what is happening. Sounds are muffled, and I hear my heartbeat in my ears. I close my eyes, giving myself completely over to the sensations I am feeling. Suddenly, everything goes silent. I open my eyes to a vast expanse of starry sky, the darkness between the stars drawing me in. I hear a voice from the darkness: You fit, you become, you ARE. The viewpoint changes – I see myself hanging as the stars whirl around me and the Universe expands until I am smaller than a pinpoint against the darkness.
This is the piece with the longest lasting effects – a brush with the Universe forever changes people. Worldviews shift, priorities change, and everything is looked at with new eyes, so to speak. Upon knowing how one fits into the grand scheme of things, one gains a sense of proportion on both the material and spiritual level that cannot be ignored. The more often ecstasy is reached, the more profound the resulting after effects can be.
Looking back at what I’ve written,I’m not sure if I made any headway here.
I also realize that I am missing the experiences of others, which also might help the overall explanation. If you’re reading this, and able to share, please do!