Return to site

I Can See Clearly Now

First milonga since coming back home!


Of course it was torture! But, and let me be quite clear about this, not because of other people.

It was torture because of me.

Yes, the energy over the dancers was pixelated and diffuse instead of vector-based and smooth. Yes, it was disorganized instead of harmonic, and random instead of symphonic. It was disconnected instead of open. But this is did not bother me. I knew from before that it would be like that.

I was actually quite relieved and pleased with what I saw. Sure, most of the dancers were not dancing, because they did not have the Thing, and therefore were just moving their bodies around, but I saw physical skill, I saw people who had worked hard to cultivate awareness in their own bodies, I saw intelligence, I saw concentration, I saw imagination, I saw humour, and I saw enjoyment. I was thrilled to see that what I had regarded as arrogance before leaving for Argentina was actually just blind ignorance. What I saw was a room full of people who were totally equipped to become dancers. They were like unplugged lamps. I was relieved to see that, I could not fault them for not having the Thing, because they simply had never been exposed to it! They had never been plugged in! So how could I possibly ask them to shine? They had in them all the required hardware in working order, and were not consciously trying to be disconnected and pixelated. The Thing just wasn't something that existed yet in their universe. I had gone dreading bad energy and instead I saw innocence, and I prefer that.

The milonga was torture for me because the last time I was around so many people and so much energy, it was at the milongas in Buenos Aires, where the energy is unified, collective, and and the sound waves resonate in parallel frequencies. Now I had to realize that...I hear everything. I see everything. And strong things I feel in my own body.

I didn't have to look at the dancers. As in Buenos Aires, I could hear them, but in Buenos Aires, there's a feeling that the whole room is dancing together. Here I heard the Argentinians moving through the pixelated noise. How much our roots were entangled affected how well I heard them. My mental model of the dance floor was of a large white sheet of paper (the other dancers), and moving around on it like bumper cars, a cell phone playing Troílo mp3s, a harmonica, and a Christmas jingle-bell.

But it went on. I heard the nature of everybody's relationship with everybody they danced with. Or it was like I saw it in brightly colored parachutes opened over their heads, or like everyone went around holding helium balloons with the status of their internal states written on them . On one hand, it was very convenient, because nobody could lie to me and everyone's intentions were as impossible-to-miss as the color of a baboon's butt. On the other hand, it was torture, because it was so much information and I had lost the ability to lie to myself. I no longer had to wonder what people were thinking, because I could see what they were feeling, even feel moments of it if they were clear with their energy. But on the other hand...too much information!

In some ways, having so many normal questions answered just raised other questions. If your energy is directed here, why not there? If you truly are feeling this...why aren't you feeling that?

I saw love and it made the same smooth round shapes in the air over people's heads that the porteños make with dancing. No wonder they love dancing. —And it does take a lot of the guesswork out of living in society. Does this person love that person? Yes. Or, no. Or, totally, all the way, absolutely. —Takes a lot of worry and wonder out the equation, and curtails the need for gossip! Because if you've already got all the answers, you don't need to ferret them out from someone else who might be wrong. But...having all the answers doesn't make life easier or nicer. Having all the answers makes life harder! And...I only have all the answers for other people! My own life is still a huge blind spot into which you could fit several moving trucks and have room left over.

It was not just a love/not love question. I could see how comfortable people were together, how relaxed, who was in charge, who stiffened up, why people liked each other, why they didn't, I saw what they were paying attention and I saw when they were about to change the direction of their attention. I saw people's energy change when they met friends, and wrap around the friends. When the porteños made little presents of the Thing in their dances, as sometimes happens, I saw and felt the presents coming out of them. One I almost cheered—oo, that was a lovely little one! Pity she missed it!

And then a couple came in whom I had not even known were a couple, and who may not necessarily have been a couple at this exact moment, or they may have been, I have no idea...but damn they had had quite a bit of truly legendary sex in the past! Wow! And they had clearly also spent significant time together not having sex, over a long period of time. They had history. And many, many bouts of the kind of sex we all dream of having. And together they made this giant white hamster-ball of energy that rolled around the floor and took up approximately half the available real estate of the dance floor at all times. I have no idea where everyone else put theirs, stuck in the shadows as they were.

I saw soft rose petals and tendrils, I saw unawareness, I saw youth, I saw determination. It was too much.

And the worst of it was, I am female and the some of the questions I had before, I still have. Truth is truth and I see it the way I see a glass sitting on a table. “IT IS THIS,” says the truth. But you know how women are! We want to know why. And that...I do not know. Not in one million years. I'll never know why someone looks here and not there, or feels this and not that. For that matter, I can see if someone feels one thing and that has absolutely no bearing on whether they feel other things.I can hear just before someone decides to do something, or tell where they're going to go, but I have no idea why they decide that or go there. I see, hear, and feel everybody's energy with total specificity; all I have to do is turn my attention toward them and I see everything. But I know nobody's motivation for any energetic action. And without knowing that...this useless gift is just a painful curse.

I Can See Clearly Now. Jimmy Cliff.