THE DRY RUN: 15 SECONDS of GAZING

orange grey sunset
Brian Hogan

Brett and I decided to do a “dry run” today so that we could make sure to find a good spot at the top of the canyon to observe the rising disc, and also to time out the drive from the morning yoga & chanting session to the canyon. The first official day of Sun-Gazing is this Monday April 7th, two days from now, so we are preparing ourselves. We made our way from the Golden Bridge Yoga Studio to the top of the canyon in a giddy buzz of excitement and palpable anticipation. Anything could happen now and we both knew it. The gays were on there way to gaze! We made it to the top of the canyon and found a parking spot with no problem at all. As we walked down the path looking for a clear view I noticed butterflies doing the hokey pokey in my stomach. I can only assume they were dancing in anticipation of the solar sun rays that were about to enhance every aspect of my being. Or possibly they were aflutter because I was feeling stupid for thinking that gazing at the sun could fix all my problems and how would I admit that on my blog today when all that happens is I get dizzy and see sun spots? I ignored the dancing butterflies as Brett and I came to a clearing in the fence that allowed us to see clear to the horizon. As we stood there waiting for the disc to peek over, the puddle of clouds at the edge of the earth was a translucent yellow-grey. I became certain this was going to be the one day in the history of the planet that the sun was going to skip. I guess I was too excited to wait patiently or think rationally because I became convinced that this was it. The very same day we decide to start gazing is the day the sun is going to change the whole game and not come up on time, or possibly come up in the north and set in the south. I didn’t know what shenanigans it was going to pull but I was certain it was up to something. Suddenly my crazy thoughts were pierced by Brett exclaiming “Oh.” I looked up to see that the yellow-grey cloud puddle is now a hot volcanic orange and there is the tiniest round arc of pure fire sliding slowly out from behind them, as if the sun was saying “ready or not, here I come”. I think I squealed!


We both started freaking out. I was so excited because as hard as it is to believe, until that moment I thought I’d never see the sun again! Then suddenly there she was, a half circle filling the sky with warmth. Brett reminded me that we have to be barefoot and as we were taking off our shoes he said to be careful of the dog poop. I was so excited that I didn’t even realize I stepped right in it already. My shoe was covered in it. It was disgusting but thank goodness it wasn’t my barefoot that squished into the pile of puppy poo. I quickly regained composure. And after a dry heave or two Brett also regained his. We set his cell phone timer for 5 seconds and waited for the full disc to appear in the sky above the horizon with our bare feet planted directly on the earth. She appeared, we hit start, and we began to gaze. The 5 seconds turned quickly into 15 seconds and I swear I felt beckoned toward the light. We broke our gaze finally and happily began our trek back to the car. I don’t know what the long term effects will be, but I felt something right away. And after the first few seconds of gazing the florescent brightness goes away and it’s as if you are looking at a pulsing gentle ball of campfire. 


SIDE EFFECTS: you may inadvertently step in dog shit.


BENEFITS: Overcoming my fear of staring directly at the thing that gives us all life. I’m starting to think that might be one of the more damaging lies of our childhoods. Staring at the sun will make you go blind, they say. But I’m beginning to think that staring at the sun is the beginning of being able to really see. 

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About Brian

About Brian

Brian is a Writer, Clarity Coach, Filmmaker and Adjunct Professor who loves teaching and learning, and living in the uncertainty of it all.

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