As a new life begins, in the swirling chaos and excitement of birth, the immediate impact on the consciousness of the parents and extended families is profound, although we often don’t recognize the radiant waves that ripple across our immediate world of consciousness, since we are caught up in the web of newborn childcare and the immediate needs of the child. In some ways, when my son was born, I was equally distracted by all of the responsibilities as most parents must be, but I made a particular effort to stop periodically and allow these radiant waves to wash over me and to take notice. The photo above was one such moment.
Holding my son’s tiny little foot in my hand was a moment I will never forget. I spent a fair amount of time in those early days relishing the moments I was able to hold my son, and although I hadn’t progressed very far in my study of consciousness at that time, I knew that this was not just a moment for a new father with his newborn son. This was something much more.
The birth itself was extraordinary in several ways, but most notably, as he entered the world, his umbilical cord was not stable and when the last big push brought him into the doctors hands, the cord “burst” open, spraying all of us in the vicinity with cord blood. I remember thinking to myself, “So THIS is why they give birth in the hospital!” Everyone in the room turned immediately to look at me, I suppose, assuming I would be falling off my chair next to the obstetrician, but I just looked back at them with a puzzled expression, as if to say, “What are you looking at me for?” After what seemed like an eternity, the first cries issued from my son’s lungs and I began to breathe normally myself.
There was an immediate sense of bonding with my son that seemed to take everyone by surprise. I delved headfirst into the care of my newborn child with great enthusiasm, and spent every available moment with him. I watched carefully for all the signs and signals of development, and learned everything I could about how to provide him with the optimal benefits. All of my children were special to me in this way, but I had a special connection to my son that I only realized many years after his birth. It was the awakening of consciousness within him that sparked such an intense interest in studying the blossoming of consciousness in the world, and the intensity of that experience was unique amongst all the siblings.
All of my children are dear to me, and each of them contributed to my understanding of the world and of how we become who we are and how becoming “conscious” is different for each of us. As the only boy, among five sisters, the focus was a little different with my son, and as a consequence of being the only son, I had to spend time differently with him in some ways, but what amazed me as time progressed was how much he seemed to mirror my own childhood experiences and how often there seemed to be an echo of me in him.
As he grew, at nearly every notable stop along the way, while he was clearly a different person, I never lost the sense of connection to him, and on the contrary, seemed to be watching the echo I spoke of become more pronounced and all indications were that there was something more between us that went beyond genes and chromosomes and family resemblance.
The photo above shows my father, on the right, myself on the left, and my son in the middle. In each image, we are enlisted men in the Army, we are all age twenty, and all preparing to go overseas. My father was twenty in 1944. I was twenty in 1973, and my son was twenty in 2002–exactly twenty nine years apart in every case. My grandfather was also 29 when my Dad was born, and my great-grandfather died at age 28…but would have been 29 when my grandfather was born had he survived. Talk about echoes!
My son just turned thirty (no children as yet) so the twenty-nine rule has been broken finally, but breaking the rules is ALSO a family tradition, so there are still plenty of echoes to come. The photo above is one I took of myself on my thirtieth birthday, and having a “thirty-something son” makes the image all the more compelling. He was a year old when I took it, and the thought of HIM turning thirty seemed impossibly far ahead in the future on that day.
These echoes reverberate through the years and represent a formidable link to the consciousness in the world. Materialists may wish to attribute all of these reverberations to genes and human physiology, but even just this brief look at the phenomenal resonance over generations of fathers and sons, in my view, speaks to a manifestation of a much more complex symbiosis. I’ll be elaborating on this aspect of the story again in a later posting.