Every time I fly somewhere, the strangest thing happens. I enter another time and space, a place of stillness.
It starts slowly. It begins as I pack and finish things that must be done before I leave. Travel day arrives, usually long before dawn. Next, the hour plus trip to the airport, Del driving, me dozing or watching the road go by. He drops me off, we hug and kiss, and I turn sadly away, rolling my suitcase towards the terminal, ready for what comes next.
As the sliding doors open, the next phase begins; all hustle and bustle, lights, action, crowds, shiny floors. People everywhere. Some lagging, some hurrying, some know where they are going, others just stand and wait for more information.
Line managed, bag checked, thanks to the many helpers, stop at the restroom, navigate the checkpoint, find the gate, find a seat, and the next step towards stillness begins. After briefly checking my email, I read. This is when time and space really begins to shift to stillness. Even the herding into the plane doesn’t really disturb the shell that began to form.
Once seated, I am ready for what happens next, or what doesn’t happen next. Encased in this small space nothing goes on.
Outside of the plane, other people see the plane leave, travel through the air, land again. Inside, reading, watching computers, or sleeping, we are simply sitting in seats. A few hours later, we leave our seats and we are in a different time zone, different vegetation, different air, and different smells. World events have gone on while we traveled; we knew nothing of it.
For me, that time in the silver tube, called an airplane, is a mini vacation away from the world, and into stillness.
Not everyone finds that stillness sitting in an airplane. No matter. If we want it, we can always find it because the quality of stillness is a quality of the Divine. It is always within and with us. And within stillness, time dissolves.