Saturday, May 26, 2012

Cycles of Creatitivity and Stillness

"Humans, like other animals, are shaped by the places they inhabit, both individually and collectively. Our bodily rhythms, our moods, cycles of creativity and stillness, even our thoughts are readily engaged and influenced by seasonal patterns in the land. Yet our organic attunement to the local earth is thwarted by our ever-increasing intercourse with our own signs. Transfixed by our technologies, we short-circuit the sensorial reciprocity between our breathing bodies and the bodily terrain. Human awareness folds in upon itself, and the senses – once the crucial site of our engagement with the wild and animate earth – become mere adjuncts of an isolate and abstract mind bent on overcoming an organic reality that now seems disturbingly aloof and arbitrary."
-David Abram, The Spell of the Sensuous


I've been laying in the tall grasses behind our house a lot lately. Dancing in the thunderstorms, too. Long walks, while tired in the soon-summer heat, are keeping me humble. And I'm generally less interested in socializing, checking e-mail, going out, doing Bikram yoga, or working at the coffee shop than my often high-speed style.

An internal meditation something like stacking link-n-logs is being called forth. A way to piece together all the wild experiences I've had over the past few months. A new vision. I know not from a place in my mind, but from a feeling in my body. It's telling me to rest. To be quiet. To be still. To do nothing until something is coming all the way through me.

I'm listening, deeply. It's Saturday night and I'm home snuggling up against the possibility of a painting or a poem or a nice long rest. No particular pressures. Just space. Just stillness. Not even a song in the background plays to distract me. Just the quiet hum of the refrigerator and the memory of the birds singing before bedtime. (That's the way they roll, ya know, singing like crazy people before bedtime and then as soon as the sun truly disappears and the sky turns deep deep blue--sleep. The birds know how to go to sleep with the sun.)

The Earth is undergoing a great change these days, moving from a wild rebirthing drenched in diversity, to the sweltering stimulus of a hot hot summer. It's so easy to just keep going in a particular mode without pausing, without laying in the grass to check your own pulse against the pulse of the Earth, without seeing or listening for desires from the inside, out.

But what if you did? What if you stopped, turned off your phone, closed your lap top, left the ear plugs at home for a day, and just listened? Listened with your whole body? Not for something in particular, but for anything that's there.

That's my invitation to you sweet friends, if you want it. An hour, an afternoon, a day--machine-free--body returning to the body of the Earth, there to see what secrets she has to tell you. Because she's full of them, and she's always willing to tell. Grab a blanket. A journal if you'd like. Feel free to jot down her wisdom. She won't mind. She'll just be glad to have you for a visit.

1 comment:

Meg said...

Just reading this made me breathe a little deeper and more slowly <3

I spent the entire winter with an iPod blasting audiobooks in one ear. I thought it was keeping me sane as I rushed through my days and battled parent-burnout. But I was so very, very wrong. What I really needed was silence, stillness, solitude, and the wind kissing my cheeks. I realized it as the spring began to creep up on Nova Scotia, and I'm so glad I did.

Thank you for this invitation. I'll be taking you up on it. <3