When our desire is intense yet ineffectual, the first thing we doubt is our own capacity for such an experience. However, if our assumption is true that individuals innately possess the capacity for lucid dreaming, then the problem must lie elsewhere. One way to account for the apparent ineffectiveness of the capacity and desire is to postulate a third variable that influences the frequency of lucid dreaming and other transformative experiences. This quality, which may be called "openness," acts as a mediating variable between desire, which is a conscious catalyst -- and capacity, which is an unconscious potential.
--G. Scott Sparrow, Lucid Dreaming: Dawning of the Clear Light
Everyone talks about "this quality," or "this phenomenon," and I want to stop referring to it as "this phenomenon" and I don't want to repeat each time "the act of balancing focus and detachment". You know, that thing which mediates between our conscious will and pure Intent. The act of balancing focus and detachment.
BOFAD? Not bad, really, but I hate acronyms.
This heretofore unnamed phenomenon of getting your will to line up with Intent so that you instantly experience what you want and hope to experience... it's important on so many levels. It keeps popping up all over the place. There's the fairly irrelevant (to me) notion of getting reality to turn your way on some gross level like finding money in your mailbox. I prefer to stick to the unworlding experience and let the Law of Attraction and Real Magic people work out their end of it. In two previous chapters, I've given examples of images disappearing if I focused on them too hard, but becoming more real whenever I can somehow get the balance of focus and detachment just right.
This phenomenon exists at this level too: if I try too hard to get unworlded or want it too much, it runs away.
This phenomenon occurred as an ancient Celtic folk parable when Pwyll pursued the beautiful queen of the underworld, Rhiannon, who was sauntering down the road on a magic horse. The faster Pwyll chased her, the further ahead she got on her relaxed horse. Oddly enough, Pwyll's name, as a common Welsh noun, means "caution, discretion, prudence, sanity". You see, this thing is chasing us trying to name itself, and the slower I go, the more it lags behind.
Where did that come from? This phenomenon is even mentioned in Alice in Wonderland: "The hurrier I go, the behinder I get." You can't get away from this thing. Yikes.
I'm going to have to come right out and say it: like Intent--which is fiveness or the heart chakra--this Whatchacall might be a Basic Element of Reality. It's one of the harmonics of awareness. Which one? That should be easy to figure out; there's only seven of them.
2ness=duality3ness=focus *4ness=value5ness=detachment *6ness=interest7ness=intuition8ness=expansion
*I found focus and detachment in the list, so which one is balance?
That would be 9ness. It's not on the list, because it's the body of air, it's what comes to life when all seven harmonics of awareness or dream bodies are balanced with each other.
If synthesis, balance, or cooperation of all the harmonics gives you total freedom to go anywhere in the Unworld, then what happens if you can just manage to balance focus and detachment? Nice visions. Pretty pictures. Beyond Noticing. It happened to me again last night. I was in a dream, and popped out of it into the Nowhere, which I tend to mistake for being in my bed with my eyes closed. I remembered not to waste the opportunity and stopped talking to myself, and was instantly Beyond Noticing in a full-size Projection Room environment watching undescribable objects slowly spin so I could see them from all sides. As usual, if I gazed too hard at an object, it would stop spinning and revert back to a two-dimensional image.
This was not a Screenshot; it was Beyond Noticing. I was in the Projection Room. It was all quite effortless. So I accidentally went to sleep while wondering how do I unworld from here?
Wrong question! The right question would have been: what would I like to experience right now? Or better yet, what is my Intent-o-genda? At this point Intent is the Dream Usher, waiting for a suggestion and ready to take me more-or-less where I want to go. So I went to sleep. Having given up coffee recently, I am currently reconstituting my ability to defy the Voice of Idiossification which hates it when I write in my dream journal.
I have to make myself remember that once I'm in the Projection Room, I'm past the Apnea and I'm ready to go anywhere. It's just a matter of remembering this while I'm there. The pretty pictures are fascinating, though, because I was not told about this in Sunday School, so the tendency so far has been to stay put for the show, and either wake up the rest of the way or go to sleep the rest of the way, when "BOFAD" gets too... hard isn't the right word. Too easy?
So we're much closer to knowing what this thing is. But when can I stop calling it "this thing" or Whatchacall? "Pwyll" is out of the question, the pronunciation sounds like letting all the air out of a goose by stepping on its chest. "Rhiannon" is already taken, and then some.
I was ready to start using BOFAD when I thought, "BOFADE!" and then a better idea came to me: FocusFade.
FocusFade because if you focus on an image that occupies a small part of the screen, the image fades, stops moving, or disappears. But if you let your normally narrow visual focus fade (expand) into full-screen mental focus, the components of the small images on the screen come into focus automatically. This is what has been trying to get through to me for a long time, why I try to look behind my head to experience 360 degree vision in order to get my eyes out of the way. Why Frank Kepple said to look with the mind while keeping the eyes relaxed.
The mind cannot focus on small images without dissolving them. It doesn't work like eyes. To see in the Unworld, use "soft eyes." Look at everything equally and focus takes care of itself, because the mind can focus effortlessly on the big picture, but if it tries to focus on a small part of the picture, it doesn't know where it is anymore, it loses lucidity.
Frank Kepple: "mild curiosity". Nice try Frank, but it's not mechanically descriptive enough. FocusFade it is. Mechanically speaking, detachment mediates between will and Intent. When we focus on something, that's will, attention. When something actually happens, for real, that's Intent in action. To link will and intent, FocusFade. The world as a whole is a single molecule, a moment, a reflection of the mind. That is vision, lucidity, awareness. When we get Tunnel vision, obsessed with goals that keep retreating, that is the 2-3-4 Mind robbing energy from gratitude, intuition, and expansion (6ness, 7ness, and 8ness). The solution is to rob that energy back and give it to 5ness, Intent, with detachment, so the energy of awareness can be sent to where it's actually needed. Detachment keeps us from trying to control the route; this energy, once freed from the greedy clutches of the conscious mind, knows where to go.
Intent and detachment are both manifestations of 5ness, the heart chakra. Which is to say, they are the same thing seen from a different angle.