“There is nothing to save, now all is lost,
but a tiny core of stillness in the heart
like the eye of a violet.”
― D.H. Lawrence
Sometimes it seems to me as if loneliness and sadness pervades life on a daily basis. We are so busy with our lives, rushing around, trying to fulfill perceived expectations and making endless exhausting attempts to feel good or stave off difficult emotions. Unless one is very mindful there is little opportunity to stop, just stop and let things be as they are without interference or escape. Perspective is easily lost and it becomes difficult to find an anchor or place of reference and stability. Disconnect develops in our relationships with others, our life and, our relationship with ourselves leading to loneliness, isolation and depression. Regaining these connections takes time, space and patience along with an ability to experience difficult emotions, thereby allowing them to pass. I have always wrestled with these issues thinking that if I apply the right logic, change my situation or find some enlightened way of thinking or being it will go away. It never has and I don’t think it ever will. The answer is not something that can be thought or grasped.
Recently, I have been getting up very early to take photos of birds at dawn when the light is the most beautiful. Unexpectedly, I have found space in the stillness of the early morning to connect. The connection is with life and beauty, the rhythm of creatures, places, light, movement and change. The experience brings me back into myself yet the shift is not within my mind and remains beyond thoughts and words. It is truly indefinable.
Without trying peace comes, the anxiety subsides and I realize there is nothing to work out because somehow I am falling into stillness. There is a sense of something infinitely subtle and very precious which has become a place of refuge and a source of inspiration and strength for me. This has been an intensely personal experience and has amplified the loneliness and emotional distance from others. To close the gap, I have tried to share, but my attempts are awkward, words are inadequate and I am usually left frustrated. The closest I have come is through my photos where I hope, others can see some of what I talk about. There is still much angst in my mind yet one thing has become extremely clear. To live my best so I can inspire change and leave a good mark on the world, the connection I speak of must be carefully nurtured and maintained. It must remain a priority because I know it is from the stillness that direction and inspiration will arise.
“It is the wilderness in the mind, the desert wastes in the heart through which one wanders lost and a stranger. When one is a stranger to oneself then one is estranged from others too. If one is out of touch with oneself, then one cannot touch others.”
― Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea
“One writes not to be read but to breathe...one writes to think, to pray, to analyze. One writes to clear one's mind, to dissipate one's fears, to face one's doubts, to look at one's mistakes--in order to retrieve them. One writes to capture and crystallize one's joy, but also to disperse one's gloom. Like prayer--you go to it in sorrow more than joy, for help, a road back to 'grace'.”
― Anne Morrow Lindbergh, War Within & Without: Diaries and Letters of Anne Morrow Lindbergh, 1939-1944
“The intellectual is constantly betrayed by his vanity. Godlike he blandly assumes that he can express everything in words whereas the things one loves, lives, and dies for are not, in the last analysis completely expressible in words.”
― Anne Morrow Lindbergh