Actually, the ultimate ambient music was probably experienced by me in my very house, while resting on my very lounge last summer: There I was and there I lay, retired for the evening, with discman and good headphones on the ready, when suddenly it occurred to me that something very profound and mysterious was about to unfold. Perhaps this wasn't anything all that unusual as I had often enjoyed the process of the deep, inward ambient electronic journey. Thus, I wasted no more time and pressed the 'play' button on the portable CD player, so that at that very moment, the mystery CD seemed to spin and the world seemed to drift.
It must have been no more than 5-10 minutes later when I began thinking things like:
"Wow... this is deep" and "holy heck, this is minimal as all hell..."
Then at that point the sense of mystery or mysteriousness started to deepen and became increasingly unsettling, indeed it was something too weird for words. So I sat up and flicked on the table-side lamp, only to realize that the device had been set to lock/hold and thus the CD hadn't even been playing. What a revelation! that I had merely confused what I was expecting to hear for the droning sound of an air-conditioner (yet again). And what a relief for existence also! which had since reverted back to being a laughing matter yet again.
Still the sense of mystery lingered on and gradually re-intensified until the point where it finally and rather suddenly hit me with the force of an F-18 producing the sonic boom, throwing my consciousness from this end of the couch to other.
And it was at that moment that the true essence of ambient fully manifested itself to me.
Without intending, I had momentarily confused the non-spinning state of the CD with it's spinning state, and the muffled soundwaves of the world beyond the headphones, with the expectation of the inner world within them.
And such as it was, that one experience, or lack thereof served as a catalyst for a billion splinter thought-variations, and for each of them a non-thought counterpart. Everything went inside out; the expectation inherent in what makes music musical had dissolved, pre-conceptions of what 'is' and 'is not' dissolved - and everything just sort of 'was' - all on account of accidentally having listened to 'not-listening' and/or being a lone wolf who reserves the preference for hyper-connectivity over insanity, not that he'd know.
(a huge big echo chamber with just me in it)