Floating in Darkness — Prologue

Hey gang, I’m writing a new book titled “Floating in Darkness”. The prologue serves to set the stage for the main tenet of the book. The prologue has a literal meaning and many layers of underlying metaphorical meanings. I am posting it here on Medium to ask for your perspective. What do you think the literal and metaphorical meanings are and where you think the book is going?

Thanks, Ron

Prologue: The Red Shift of an Expanding Universe

I am awake.

For the first time, I realize that the communication I experience constantly is actually coming from me. I guess “I am awake” is my first acknowledged thought.

I am alone.

If all of my thoughts come from me and there is nothing else, am I alone? Are my thoughts the only things that exist?

I hope not. I long for others, I long to belong.

I feel.

I feel something pushing against me and I realize that I have boundaries. I realize that there exists that which is me and that which is not me. I realize, that which is not me just put pressure on that which is me. I also realize I can feel things that are me and through this sense of touch I can determine the boundaries of that which is me. Through touch I can also determine the boundaries of that which is not me, that is, the boundaries of my universe.

March 13th 1961 “In news today a B-52 bomber carrying nuclear weapons crashed near Yuba City California. This is the second time in two months that a B-52 carrying nuclear weapons has crashed. Before today, the last crash was in late January near Goldsboro North Carolina.

I hear.

Not long ago I started hearing things other than my thoughts. None of what I hear makes any sense. Could these be the thoughts of others? Could there be another world out there? Could there be others like me somewhere?

April 12th 1961“Breaking News: Russia has put the first man in orbit around the Earth and returned him safely. A Soviet Air Force major, father of two, has circled the Earth in 89.1 minutes, and come back, the official Russian news agency Tass reported. The height of the orbit varied from 110 to 188 miles. 27 year old, Maj. Yuri Gagarin, landed at 2:55 EST April 12th, without suffering any harm. Gagarin upon his return to Earth commented, “I saw for the first time how beautiful our planet is. Mankind, let us preserve and increase this beauty, and not destroy it!” The Soviet success in achieving this first step has underscored the lag in US space booster capability. According to NASA’s own estimates, the USSR is expected to beat the US to the Moon by 5 years.”

The sounds I hear have changed. Up until recently the sounds seemed strange, distant and random, but now I occasionally hear what sounds like muffled thoughts. I can’t make sense of the sounds but they definitely resemble the pattern of my thoughts.

I see.

For the first time I realize that I have been floating in darkness. I didn’t know what darkness was until I saw light for the first time. Now, my world cycles between complete darkness and a dim red glow. Within the red glow I can make out shapes, I can determine the direction of sound, and I can start to see my world.

May 5th 1961 “Reporting live from Cape Canaveral Florida, The United States’ first space man, Alan B. Shepard Jr. Rocketed briefly across the threshold of space today and landed safely after a 5,100 mile an hour journey that carried him 115 miles high and 302 miles downrange. The pickup occurred at 10:53am, 19 minutes after the Redstone booster blasted off from Cape Canaveral at 10:34am. The 37-year-old navy commander’s good condition was evident throughout the flight when Shepard reported such things as: “What a beautiful sight!” in describing the Earth below

I love.

Ever since I first saw light, I have felt a feeling I can’t fully explain. I feel that I am wrapped in warmth and well being. I feel that I am protected and cared about. I am really starting to believe that I am not alone and a strong desire to be with others is coming alive within me.

May 14th 1961 “Today, as a Greyhound bus carrying so-called Freedom Riders seeking to test the segregation of interstate transportation facilities, arrived in Anniston, Alabama, an angry mob of about 200 white people surrounded the bus, causing the driver to continue past the bus station. The mob followed the bus in automobiles, and when the tires on the bus blew out, a bomb was thrown into the bus. The Freedom Riders escaped the bus as it burst into flames, only to be brutally beaten by members of the surrounding mob. Other Freedom Riders traveling on a second bus, arrived in Birmingham, Alabama, today. Those riders were also beaten by an angry white mob, many of whom brandished metal pipes. Birmingham Public Safety Commissioner Bull Connor stated that, although he knew the Freedom Riders were arriving and violence awaited them, he posted no police protection at the station because it was Mother’s Day.”

It is becoming clear to me that I am actually hearing the thoughts of others. I don’t know what they are saying but I can tell when they are happy and when they are sad.

I don’t know why these others are such a mystery to me. Why can’t I see them? Why can’t I speak to them? Are they like me? Even though I don’t know where I am or what I am, I love where I am. Whenever I feel the slightest need or discomfort I am immediately soothed. Although I am starting to suspect that there’s a larger world than what I presently am experiencing, I am perfectly content and happy.

Aug 13th 1961 Today, the quietness of East Berlin’s deserted streets was shattered in the early hours of the morning by the screaming of police sirens as police cars, motorcycles and truckloads of police sped through the city. The action came shortly after publication of a declaration by the Communist Warsaw Pact States that effective controls must be put into force on the borders of West Berlin because of a “perfidious agitation campaign” by the West. As of now, the border between East and West Berlin is effectively closed. East German troops are standing guard at the Brandenburg Gate, the main crossing point between the Eastern and Western sectors. The East Berlin City Government banned its citizens from holding jobs in the Western part of the divided city. This will affect tomorrow the thousands of East Berliners who daily commute to work in the Western sector. The closing of the border came after East Berliners had waited nervously yesterday for the Iron Curtain to ring down on refugee escape routes to the West. In an official statement, the Government of the Warsaw Pact States naturally understand that the taking of protective measures on the borders of West Berlin will create certain discomforts for the population. But in view of the existing position the blame for this must be taken exclusively by the Western powers and above all by the Government of the West German Federal Republic.”

I now realize that I live in two different worlds. One world is a world of alternating darkness and red dim light where everything is familiar, comfortable and right. But every now and then, I feel this familiar world slowly slipping away. All that is familiar starts to vanish only to be replaced with a new world that has no boundaries. This new world is the opposite of familiar and everything is new and exciting. In this other world I have freedom to do whatever I like. It’s almost as if I am in complete control over this world. In this other world there are many others each having unique form. Somehow I am able to communicate with these others effortlessly. I hear their thoughts and they hear mine. I enjoy being with these others. I realize that even though they are separate from me there is an unbreakable force that ties us together. In this boundary-less world we can simultaneously understand how everything is intimately tied together and dependent on one another while not losing the realization of our own distinct existence.

Normally, just when I really start to get used to this other world, the world of alternating darkness and red dim light creeps back in and I return to the familiar, comfortable and right. But just now, while deep into the world without boundaries, I feel vibrations. At first these vibrations are barely perceptible and they don’t distract me from enjoying the freedom of the boundary-less world. Slowly and steadily however these vibrations are increasing in strength to a crescendo and then slowly decrease beyond my perception. This pattern keeps repeating over and over again. I imagine a giant being many times bigger than my entire world slowly approaching me to the point where it is so close that I feel I can reach out and touch it. I haven’t yet worked up the courage to reach out before the vibrations retreat. I am not sure which one of my worlds I’m in.

Now the vibrations seem much stronger and are approaching me very fast. The vibrations have become so strong that I am jolted back into the certainty of the world of alternating darkness and red dim light however now things no longer feel familiar, comfortable, or right. What is happening?

I am starting to feel worried. Every now and then when the vibrations become almost unbearable, that which is not me pushes in on me from all sides. It’s as if the entire world shrinks down to the size of a small part of me. I’m squeezed so tight that I feel part of me spilling outside of my boundaries. Just when I think I’m about to turn inside-out, that which is not me expands back to its usual size. The frequency of these shrinkings are becoming faster and faster. This last one has me really worried because, for the first time, the shrinking occurred mostly around the top of my head. I feel as though my head is being crushed. Now the shrinking is everywhere except for the top of my head. The top of my head is not squeezed at all and now it feels cold. The squeezing has continued but it seems that less and less of me is affected.

All of sudden I can see a very bright light. It’s not the red light that I’m used to but a white light that’s so bright that it hurts and I have to close my eyes as hard as I can.

In a flash, I am no longer squeezed at all and I am bathed in cold white light coming from every direction. I can now clearly hear thoughts that are not my own. I still don’t know what they’re saying but for the first time I am sure they are not from me.

Although I am no longer being squeezed from that which is not me I feel that my insides are pulling in from my core. A great pressure is building up outside of me that I know if it continues will destroy me.

A part of me is opening up and the great pressure is entering me as I feel relief. For the first time I hear a sound that I definitely know is coming from me. I find myself taking in from outside of myself and giving back from myself all accompanied by a strange loud sound.

I want the sound to stop but even though I know it’s coming from me I can’t stop it.

The sound has died down and now I notice that I am being held. I now fully understand that I am not alone. There is another looking at me. I see joy, I see love. I stare back at this other for awhile and then notice that the bright white light is softly dimming and slowly I feel myself being pulled back to the world without boundaries.

Oct 30th 1961 Today Russia has exploded the world’s largest ever nuclear device provoking widespread condemnation from around the world. The device known as the Tsar Bomb is believed to be 50 megatons, equivalent to be 50 million tons of TNT, caused the biggest ever man-made explosion in history. The test, the 26th in the current series, was carried out over the Arctic island of Novaya Zemlya despite repeated objections from the West. Shockwaves from the explosion were first picked up at the seismological institute at Uppsala in Sweden at 0830 hours GMT.

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