Part 1: The Experience of Life as Unreal

The week leading up to my psychosis, I began experiencing even deeper
feelings of love toward my surroundings and felt more in the "now" than ever
before. I also started noticing many more synchronicities in my daily
interactions, and I felt more emotions and empathy than ever before. At an
SRF sermon about a month prior, they had talked about the power of
visualization and how you could essentially make anything you willed to
happen if you visualized it/had the right intention. My dad happened to
mention the lottery on Friday morning as we were driving to visit my
grandma. I had always felt such disdain for the lottery & for some reason,
at that moment, I decided I'd win it and donate it/share it with various
charity groups. I prayed that I'd win it, tho somehow it'd be kept a secret.
I didn't sleep on Friday night. On Saturday, I began to feel underlying
truths in every song I'd hear & and on Sunday I started noticing underlying
correlations in symbols everywhere I went/in advertisements, etc and began
to see everything as a sort of "Cosmic joke." It was as if the illusion of
maya was lifted, and it was that sense that led me to the delusional belief
that this was the answer to my prayer and instead of winning the lottery, I
was sent by God on some sort of mission to inform people of truth. That
night, I stayed up all night scribbling page after page of all the
associations I was realizing and a plan to "wake up" the world to their
divine nature. My brain was working in ways it never had before, and it was
as if everything was connected...letters/songs/people/symbols.

Now for the day of my "psychosis." On Monday, I ran to the bus stop carrying
bags of all my journals (I had been writing in them about my life/spiritual
journey for about 2 years) because I felt I needed to confide in my friend
and gain her help and explain the most recent one with all the pages of
connections/correlations. I felt an extreme sense of urgency; I thought that
the only way my message would be heard is through my death/leaving the
physical plane for now, so I thought that would be happening soon. Once on
the bus, I sat down and talked to a random man who was wearing dark
sunglasses because I saw he was holding an envelope & he reminded me of one
of my old friends (a friend who had caused me a lot of pain/heartbreak, but
whom I loved). In my head at the time, I felt that he was holding the
lottery ticket that I hadn't won before and that he would deliver the money
for me to all the charities like I'd prayed for. Once I sat down and talked
to him, we conversed about spirituality, he asked where I went to
school/what I was studying, (I told him my favorite class was World
Religions) and I specifically remember him talking about the importance of
the throat chakra. Talking to him was the start of my feeling like
everything around me wasn't real or that I was "awake in a dream" so to
speak. It was as if my life had turned into a lucid dream (which I had been
having more of the past month).

Instead of going to school, I rode farther on the bus with him and he led me
to the Apple store and pulled up some information on a laptop about
spirituality and certain Latin phrases, including A.D. and their meanings.
Then he told me I'd need to think about what I really needed and motioned to
all my bags, and when I asked what to do as I followed him out, he told me
to "just be." I went back into the Apple store & began talking to some of
the workers and customers about yoga, and each person I interacted with had
something interesting or enlightening to share with me. Then I walked
outside onto the promenade/shopping area, carrying all my journals/bags, and
again, conversed with different people. I remember asking people where I
should go/if I should go into the ocean (this was at the 3d St promenade by
the way, right next to the Santa Monica Pier). After walking around, I
decided I'd head back to school (and again, everything at this point felt
incredibly unreal & dreamlike), but a middle-aged man with long hair and a
cane began talking to me in riddles and confused me even more. I remember
mentioning SRF to him & he said something about how it was the fact that I
had a guru that I was confused. So I walked with him to a bench overlooking
the pier, and he kept telling me I looked sad and that I needed medicine,
but I kept insisting that I wasn't sad, that I had been feeling happier than
ever before but that the world around me no longer felt real. He then drew a
sketch of me and dated it (weeks later, I still had the sketch so I know it
wasn't unreal). I finally walked away from him because I felt he was testing
me, and I remember asking him what his name was and he said Cain.

So then I sat on a bench with all my journals and after thinking about what
I should do & after remembering what the man from the bus said, I decided to
leave all my bags (which had all twelve of my journals, including the one
from the night before, my wallet, my laptop, and my cellphone). I then
walked down the pier & everything still felt like a dream. Halfway down,
there was a man dressed all in white, also wearing dark sunglasses (I know I
got a real caricature drawn because like the drawing the man with the cane
did, I still had it later) who also reminded me of my friend & he had a
caricature station set up. I felt like I was talking to the same soul of the
man on the bus and the man with the cane. There was a big sign that said
Caricature, and I remember telling him, "It's been you all along that I've
been talking to today, hasn't it?" And then he asked me what I'd learned & I
pointed to the sign and said "We're all caricatures. None of this is real."
Then I sat down & he painted me. As I was sitting there, I thought that
would somehow be the way I'd "die." Before I closed my eyes, I felt that
each person who walked by was watching me & right next to the caricature
stand, I remember a mother and her son sitting and smiling/watching. When I
closed my eyes, I felt like the ocean's waves were caressing me. I remember
the painter asking me as I sat there if I was meditating. He also asked me
where I went to school in the same way the man on the bus had, and I said
Santa Monica College but that I wanted to leave Los Angeles because I was
tired of the way people were treating the earth & wanted them to wake up.
When the painting was finished, he handed me the caricature & I asked him
what I should do, and he said "just be."

--- continues in "part 2"

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