21 day water fast: day 17

road mirageToday I went into town to buy fruit for the end of my fast.  The thought of going to the shops had a certain exotic excitement to it – in contrast to my usual apathy towards shopping.  And yet, mixed into the feeling was also one of slight sadness that the fast is going to end soon.

Driving the 10km from the village into town, I realised that I’m really not quite with it… Doing the driving felt very different from last week, when I had to go back home for a few days.  Then, it felt no different from usual.  But now… Now, it felt like my consciousness was occupying a whole field surrounding my body, rather than simply being in my body – or, more precisely, being my body.  It’s not like my consciousness was entirely absent from my body – it was in there too – but it wasn’t tied down to it so tightly any more on a ‘one-to-one’ basis.  Perhaps this explains the strange feeling of dizziness I’ve felt over the last few days.  Nothing too striking, but it’s often there in the background, and especially noticeable if I’ve been concentrating on a focussed point for a while, like a computer screen or the score of some music.  Perhaps another reason for the dizziness is the continuing reduced need for sleep.  Last night I was in bed for less than five hours again.

To feel completely safe driving, it’s like I had to pull myself back into myself – or rather, back into my body.  My natural state otherwise was to be in a kind of 360-degree sphere of consciousness, rather than keeping my attention locked ahead on the road.  As it was, I found myself attracted to the details all around me, and at one point I caught myself wanting to become absorbed in appreciation for a new flower bed by the side of the road.  I feel a deeper and more spontaneous affinity for all life at the moment, and, about to enter the shops, became absorbed in admiration for the new potted plant which had been decoratively placed next to the door.

I think driving has brought to light this gradual change in consciousness, because otherwise I’ve just been being without any fixed reference point with which to compare how I’ve been experiencing myself, and how this has evolved from day to day.  Given that this particular reference point – driving – does require a very grounded approach to it, the contrast has been all the more striking.

One other thought: I wonder whether this loosening of consciousness from a fixed association with the body is one reason why I experienced the OBE a couple of days ago.  Interestingly, I came here with the intent to do some more intense lucid dreaming.  It hasn’t happened in the slightest, which I think is because when I do actually sleep at night, it’s been a quick and deep plunge into unconsciousness.  I hardly remember my dreams at all, just the tail ends of them.  And of course, heavy sleeping makes lucid dreaming almost impossible.

So there I was in town, surrounded by smells.  Again, it was all good.  The baking bacon croissant was good.  Even the raw exhaust from a motor scooter was good.

I stocked up with plenty of oranges and bananas as a base for the first day of food, with a cantaloupe melon and a couple of whole coconuts as well.  The sight of some asparagus also attracted me, so I bought a sprig.  No decent salad material around, though.  I also bought some almonds and cashews: not to eat vast quantities of them, landing myself with a stomach cramp, but – when the times comes – simply to chew one or two into a fine paste and send a gentle message to my digestive system that’s it’s time to wake up and accept fats and proteins too.

My left quad is still sore today.  I can’t believe that there’s any soreness in the first place, let alone that it lasts for more than one day!  It’s rather humbling, in fact.

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