Monday, July 17, 2017

Reflections on 1965 "Epiphany"

The Conversion of St. Paul (Wm Congdon 1912) 
(per David Brewer)

Event: 17 July 1965
Posted: 17 July 2017
Updated: 21 Aug 17

Although it is still my anchor point after more than five decades, I can't say I wasn't warned about being most careful with whom to share it. That was long ago and I wasn't as careful as I should have been.

But now it feels right to say more in this forum. The two words " day..." are what often come to mind these days and continue to make me wonder. I cannot deny the power of the experience, but wonder if I have ever really understood it. The few others who know about it have different explanations, ranging from divine to demonic. [See letter from David Brewer on July 26, 1965]

Just before this "epiphany"
 took me into a place I could never have imagined, I assumed that the words "one day" that came into my mind in a quiet, repeating simple message, meant something in the distant future. No longer do I assume this because of all that has happened since. That particular one day actually came less than a week later! Before I began to comprehend what was happening, it suddenly became the 'hill I chose to die on'. See here for the story, here for the first of two events less than a week later and here for the second, plus the the confrontation that followed. 

I've not been the same since. 

My normal, socially acceptable, professional and personal life went into upheaval. Its consequences led to losing virtually everything: family, friends, church, reputation, career, material possessions, etc. Everything but a vow made during that extraordinary morning of July 17, 1965 and before the Epiphany manifested.

After a 7-year wilderness period beginning in mid October 1965 and many following years of rebuilding personal, family and professional reputation, I wrote a play called "The Defense of Cain", which was my attempt to bring light to the struggle that ensued following the Epiphany. Its first draft was completed on June 8, 1978 and I was amazed to discover the next day that the Mormon Church had changed its prejudicial policy toward the Negro via a news release that very morning of June 8! It felt like a task completed. When I wrote to friend Arnold Mindell [founder of Process Work] about the synchronicity of it, he replied that "Inner work is world work". That summed up a 13 year process for me!

Fast forward to June 8, 1978 Epilogue


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