Disobliging Reality is a book I never intended to write, and even now am not entirely convinced that I did. My wife, Jean, passed on or crossed over or whatever the gentler phrase is supposed to be on Christmas Day 2014. We had been together for 44 years and married for 40. Our relationship was the kind that even we could never have imagined. We were and are still “soul mates”. We loved each other simply for who we are (verb tenses get a little scrambled when speaking of those who are no longer entitled to the present tense, but who nonetheless continue to be “here” in spirit). We shared what is commonly considered “unconditional” love. We loved just being together because we found each other so completely fascinating.
Then a kind of separation occurred. I am certain that it is only the temporary semblance of a separation, but the grief accompanying it is as close to a crushing reality as you can get in a made-up world. I don’t claim any special sympathy for undergoing an experience that the vast majority of us must endure. I will simply state that in my experience grief is a form of temporary insanity. All the normal landmarks vanish, all directions are equally meaningless, and life itself mocks its own seeming necessity. Eat, dress, do laundry, pay bills? What could any of it be for? What purpose could any of it serve? There was nothing left to sustain except an ongoing misery. Why do that?
Two months after Jean’s passing, a friend suggested that I begin writing something–anything so long as it gave me something to do and kept my mind occupied with some sort of diversion. So every day I sat at the computer and typed whatever came to mind. What came to mind was (I thought) a chaotic jumble of ideas and thoughts about reality and what it was about. Jean and I had spent years studying quantum mechanics theory and even had begun attending Matrix Energetics seminars around the West and Southwest. Matrix is described as a “transformational consciousness technology”, which is based upon quantum mechanics. We took to it right away and applied what we learned to our everyday lives. It was a kind of transcendent silliness that made everything light, wonderful, and dependent upon our state of consciousness. If we were soulmates before, we were identical twins now. We had a blast.
Weeks passed. I don’t know how many. I was insane. I typed feverishly every day and later, when I read what I had written, I couldn’t always recognize what I had said. There were ideas and concepts that seemed to have appeared from nowhere. Some of them surprised me with what seemed to be insights and intuitions that I considered beyond the scope of my thinking. I was on the verge of being creeped out. Besides, everything I had written was coherent, well-developed, and had the structure of a well-considered composition. True, I had been an English professor for a time, but when I tried to recall the actual process of writing this latest composition, I couldn’t identify a single step. It was blurry and tangled in my memory. I really couldn’t lay claim to have consciously managed anything at all. Still, I had what seemed to be, not only a short book, but a book that actually said something that had understandable meaning. All I could link to the writing of it was crushing, unending grief. The only explanation that I could bring to mind was that Jean had had something to do with it. My study of quantum mechanics hinted that something like that was entirely possible. I began to put, not two and two, but particle and wave together.