I remember first hearing the song "Time" on Pink Floyd's album The Dark Side of the Moon. I thought: Oh boy, now this is different. And it was most definitely different, especially in comparison to other pop music I had been exposed to as a child and young adolescent.
The introduction alone is captivating. It begins with the faint ticking of antique, grandfather clocks that soon explode into a cacophony of chimes and high-pitched ringing. Then come the roto-toms with their crisp, hollow thumps, interspersed with the long, drawn-out notes of electric bass and guitar, not to mention the sparkles from the Wurlitzer piano and Farfisa organ that accent the meandering solo of the drums.
Finally, the first verse emerges: "Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day. You fritter and waste the hours in an offhand way. Kicking around on a piece of ground in your hometown. Waiting for someone or something to show you the way."
Boom! The malaise and disillusionment of modern man is perfectly captured against a backdrop of exquisitely crafted percussion and melody. Musical genius at its best! I immediately related to the sentiment.
Ironically, getting stoned and watching The Wizard of Oz in timed synchronization with the tracks from The Dark Side of the Moon wasn't exactly answering the deeper questions itching in my mind. My sojourn into psychedelics was at times euphoric and glamorous, but it was mostly dull and taxing on my nervous system.
A little more than a decade after first smoking pot and listening to Pink Floyd—when I sobered up—I stumbled upon some words not too dissimilar from the aforementioned opening lines of "Time". But the new message I had found contained much more hope and optimism than the dreary echoes of the legendary British band. The fresh, digital lesson I had tapped into offered an invitation and a challenge to surge ahead into new territory. Here is what it said:
But too often we drift along hoping someone will open a door for us. If only they would, we'd run right through. Or would we? This is the first crucial step, wanting to run through to that something more in us. Being willing to do it. Craving it. Being desperate for it. I am here because I have been one of those for many years, and I know there must be others. I want to throw out some methods, some methods that work. Tools, you know. They are for your consideration. The rest is up to you.
I was hooked instantly. There was no way I could turn away from chasing the carrot that was dangling in front of my face. Even today, five years after first reading that lesson, I'm still on fire, and even more so than originally. The bhakti is all-consuming.
In a couple months I'll be starting school to get a massage therapy license. It's not something I would have predicted pre-AYP. But the power of touch is calling, and inner silence is moving me to walk through a new door. Let's see what happens.
"And if the cloud bursts, thunder in your ear, you shout and no one seems to hear. And if the band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the dark side of the moon."