Yesterday I bought my mother a packet of her favourite sweets. When I asked her for one she gave it to me reluctantly because she loves them so much. As soon as I put the sweet in my mouth I swallowed it whole. It was as if I had a vacuum suction in my stomach. Mum noticed I was choking and asked me what was wrong.
"I've just swallowed the sweet whole."
"Never mind," mum chuckled, "I'm sure it will melt in your stomach."
"Can I have another one?"
"No, you've just had one."
"But I didn't enjoy that sweet," I protested.
"It's not my fault you swallowed it whole," she said. "You've had one and that's your lot."
"But I didn't experience the taste, it's as if it didn't happen."
Since mum wouldn't give me one I took it anyway. This time I savoured every single moment until right at the end when I crunched the remainder.
A few weeks back there was a news item about a pelican at St James's Park that ate a pigeon whole. There was even a picture of the pigeon in the pelican's mouth. How unfortunate for the poor pigeon! (See Pelican swallows pigeon in park). I wondered if it was the same pelican I had seen at the same park a while back. He attracted a lot of attention while he was preening himself. I wrote about him in Love Has No Limits.
According to the report, the pelican held the pigeon in his beak for a while before he swallowed it whole. I remember thinking at the time that if it's true that our bodies need food to survive what difference does it make if we chew food? The pelican didn't need to. After having swallowed the sweet whole it now made sense why we chew food: because it makes the experience seem real. These days I tend to forget after I've eaten. For the sweet, or any food for that matter, to feel real to me, I have to experience it with my senses, otherwise it's as if it never happened.
I once had a vision where I saw myself experiencing all realities. I felt and knew everything and yet it happened in an instant. It was then I had a realisation that life is like a DVD of a film that has already been produced. Unlike the film that has been edited, the Life DVD contains all realities, all possibilities, everything, including the embarrassing moments.
With our consciousness or DVD players we can either experience everything in an instant or take our time enjoying the movie. To enjoy life at your leisure press Play; for parts you don't want to experience press Forward; for parts you want to experience again and again, press Pause; to remind yourself of parts you want to experience, press Rewind and then Play.
Swallowing the sweet whole was the equivalent of pressing the Forward button by accident. In order for it to register in my consciousness, I pressed Rewind then Play and savoured the moment. As for the pigeon? It is possible he forgot to press the Forward button to avoid that unfortunate scene. Poor sod!
Enjoying my Life DVD.
Related articles: Fast Forward; The Game of Life; The Director's Cut