Friday, July 9, 2010

The Beauty of Touch.

The beauty of touch is not manufactured in the brain. We can perceive and enjoy this beauty, but we do not make it. There is a beauty in touch that is as beautiful and awe-inspiring as anything could be, invisible yet tangible and life giving. I’m talking about the energy exchange between two living beings, in their bodies—we just don’t make this stuff up.

But we might take it for granted as a natural part of experience…

When I patted, scratched, and stroked Fritter’s soft fur I enjoyed him, I enjoyed myself, and I enjoyed the moment. My hands always felt so good patting Fritter. There was an emotional temperature change, an energy of love that was flowing freely—so beautiful. I had become so accustomed to the experience, that I don’t even know if I appreciated it, but I always enjoyed it. And I’ve come to realize that, for myself, this experience of enjoying someone face to face or hand to back is in itself a form of gratitude—a natural flow of thanks. By enjoying someone’s presence we are saying, “I am so grateful for you!” without saying those words out loud.

I was forced into a learning moment last week when Fritter, the friendly and affectionate bunny died.

I learned that his body was so important to me when he left it just after midnight on June 30, 2010. He came over to where I was for his last moments, and when he was gone I knew I wanted to sleep in the same room with him one more time—not that I slept much. But I did rest next to his body that night.

The next morning I reached out to move him, and my hands recoiled. I almost couldn’t to it. My hands weren’t finding the enjoyment they had known during those years of touching Fritter’s incredible living body. They were finding a dead body. The beautiful feeling was not being returned, because it was no longer coming from this body. I understood, but it was a difficult thing for my body to process. It was as if my hands had been suddenly blinded when I touched him in that state.

Fritter was so beautiful, so loving and so vast as perceived through my curious hands, always interested in tousling his softness.

Here he is with his good friend Fawn, who is still living with me.

Thank you, Fritter, for sharing your mystery with me!


Kaivalya said...

That was beautifully expressed!

Your words about the energy of touch really resonated with me. Animals are a unique conduit for 'touch energy' because they have no ulterior motives and love so freely.

And there are few animals that are as pleasurable to stroke as a rabbit!

I'm so sorry to hear your bunny passed, Brooks.

YogaforCynics said...

So sorry to hear about Fritter's passing, and you offer a beautiful tribute to all he embodied here.

"as if my hands had suddenly been blinded"--what a fascinating image...

Linda-Sama said...

so sorry, cat died the week of Memorial Day, which I also wrote about....


Unknown said...

rip fritter. i'm really sorry. this makes me cry because i can not imagine a life without my doris.
have you done or had reike before? (i used to do it)

Anonymous said...

Brooks, I am so sorry. You know we hold bunnies in very high esteem in this house. They are truly special. We are blessed by their presence. :)

Anonymous said...

I think it's something about reaching out and feeling "like for like". You know - other things that are alive and warm and as much as we generally perceive difference, I think the sense of touch clues us in to non-difference, the oneness.

But that is very difficult to reconcile when there is a major state change, such as life and death. Despite what we know about the world, and how all living things die eventually, we still have trouble seeing death as a part of the continuity of our experience. Even our sense of touch says 'this is other'.

I had a similar experience when viewing my grandpa after his passing several years ago now. He honestly didn't seem to be my grandpa at all any more. He was cold, his eyes were sunken and he was gone. But I made myself kiss his forehead anyway in honour of the man I had known.

I'm so sorry that Fritter has left the known, warm world, and I am glad you still have Fawn to keep you company. And I hope you do feel better about his passing soon.