Every two or three years I’m required to fast for 36 hours before a medical procedure, and it’s become my habit to make a sort of joke about it and call it a “vision quest”. This year it occurred to me to take it slightly more seriously, and define it differently as well. My new challenge is to translate “vision quest” as “to see things differently”. For one thing, food. Since I can’t eat it, I’m trying to see food as I would see twigs and leaves, non-edible substances. Another thing is time. Instead of watching it pass, I’m consuming it, as if it were like, well, food. It’s there to be devoured, streaming into my mind like air into my lungs. Take it in. Another is music. I’ve had this idea before, that music is essentially medicine, and I want to watch the effects of “good” medicine on my overall state.
The main difference is this: the “vision quest” is not a search for something outside of oneself, it is an inner transformation, a conscious rewiring of insight.