Source: Journal of a Nobody
Source: Journal of a Nobody
They just look like old men. And because of that, they are seen as elderly rather than wise. But there is a wisdom that comes with age. The old have walked the path we tread. They have seen the landscape through which we are traveling. They have felt our passions and known our dreams, though perhaps in different shape and in different measure. In their eyes we can see our future. In our eyes they can see their past. In some fundamental way, they know the place where we are going.
The look I saw in the eyes of both those older men in the past two days was a look of deep compassion and understanding. They understood something about me, just as I understand something about the hopeful, headphone-wearing twenty-year-olds in that gym. It is knowledge unspoken, but it is knowledge, nonetheless. They also know that few will seek them out. They have accepted the fact that few will ask them to share what it is that they have come to understand. Their time has come and passed; the younger generations want little more from them than reminiscences.
I was honored to speak to both these men. I hope I showed them proper respect in our conversations. I hope, too, that I was listening to them for what they can teach me about life, not merely for what they can reveal as witnesses to the past. For each touched me deeply. In their presence, I felt both judged and understood. It was as if their eyes, still bright, saw something I myself could not see. Their gazes gave me silent comfort, as if to say, “It’s all right to be where you are. It is exactly where you ought to be.” It was the kind of comfort that I hope to give my son as I see him moving through choppy waters — a look of understanding that says, “You are not alone.”
We live so strongly within the boundaries of our own experience. If we long for anything, it is usually for a time past, when we were younger, stronger, better looking, and not yet so bound by decisions we have made. We seldom long for a future where our bodies are less but our spirits and insight are more. Yet, that future is there. It is in the eyes of those who have lived longer, seen more, and come closer to a resolved understanding of their place and purpose on this planet. I feel better as a man, better as a person, and filled with a new sense of challenge and responsibility for having encountered those two old men. Their mortality, so close to the surface, has touched me in some deep and irreducible part of my own being. I feel observed and, in a strange way, renewed. They have given me the gift of their witness and the blessing of their understanding. May I take that gift, learn from it, and find a way to pass it on.
~ Kent Nerburn, Two Old Men in Ordinary Sacred
Photo Credit: va.gov
“Amangiri, ‘peaceful mountain’, is situated in Canyon Point, Southern Utah, close to the border with Arizona. The resort is tucked into a protected valley with sweeping views over colourful, stratified rock towards the Grand Staircase – Escalante National Monument. The resort is a 25-minute drive from the nearest town of Page, Arizona and a 15-minute drive to the shores of Lake Powell. Architecturally, the resort has been designed to blend into the landscape with natural hues, materials and textures a feature of the design. The structures are commanding and in proportion with the scale of the natural surroundings, yet provide an intimate setting from which to view and appreciate the landscape.”
Don’t miss the picture tour for Amangiri: Picture Tour
Source: My Modern Met
cautiously, I allowed
myself to feel good
I found moments of
peace in cheap
just staring at the
knobs of some
or listening to the
rain in the
the less i needed
the better i
~ Charles Bukowski, Let It Enfold You
It’s 8:00 am Friday morning. Delta flight 466, a non-stop to JFK, departing at 8:30.
Hordes of travelers mill around the gate — all restless, anxious, and shifting from one foot to the other waiting for their zone to be called.
With no status on this airline, my concern rests with available overhead bin storage capacity. My shoulders tense up. I will cram this bloody carryon bag under my seat to avoid checking it.
158 seats are taken on this 160-seat Boeing 737-800. I see space in an overhead bin at the front of the plane, and suffer the stares as I jam my bag between two others. I know this is against First Class rules. But, go ahead Lady. Say something. Grab this Tiger by the tail. I’m operating on 4 hours of sleep, and just itching for confrontation. Go ahead. Give it your best shot.
The middle seat to my right remains open. Passengers continue to board. Could this be my lucky day? Or…Not? Could he or she be an armrest hog? Take frequent bathroom breaks? Bring a pungent and messy burrito on board for breakfast? Listen to music blaring from earbuds? Have a drippy nose? Body odor? Be doused in perfume? Nosy? LEANER? TALKER? [Read more…]
this blog is my boat, these words are my oars, and there’s a storm in the distance that will take them all apart. i will be fine. if i can’t find a piece of a word to hold me up, and in truth that’s asking a lot of some vowels and consonants – not their job, after all – i will float on my back, face against the rain. it won’t last forever. the boat may sink, but that has nothing to do with me. i am free. gone with the rain.
[Sacred space] is an absolute necessity for anybody today. You must have a room, or a certain hour or so a day, where you don’t know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes to you. This is a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be. This is the place of creative incubation. At first you may find that nothing happens there. But if you have a sacred place and use it, something eventually will happen. […]
Our life has become so economic and practical in its orientation that, as you get older, the claims of the moment upon you are so great, you hardly know where the hell you are, or what it is you intended. You are always doing something that is required of you. Where is your bliss station? You have to try to find it.
~ Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth
I’ve seen what’s to come—
it is the days,
the steady pounding of days,
like gentle rain,
that will be our undoing.
— John Philip Johnson, from “There Have Come Soft Rains,” Rattle (No. 45)