Rhythm

Photography: Trish Jean

There are many sayings about the Spring and the seasons. They note that you can’t appreciate one while you’re still in another, that they march on inexorably, that baseball players stand at the window in winter awaiting the Spring…I’m a romantic so I like this one:

I want to do to you what spring does with the cherry trees. – Pablo Neruda

I also like the idea of the rhythm of the seasons, and even the rhythm of each day. I’ve been so worried about my own lack of rhythm, stumbling into and through the days lately, that I’ve lost the ability to sit still and listen and feel and get into the rhythm that is buzzing away there already. It’s contained in the movement of the clouds, it slips through the trees, it’s sometimes gentled and other times roared by the ocean, it’s in the funny noises my cat makes, it’s the voices of the neighbours wisping through the cracked window, and it’s a heart beat.

I was reading the wonderful Brain Pickings earlier today, and came across A Unique Trust Placed in Chance and Eternity: How Real Love Begins and What Makes it Flourish Over Time,  Maria Popova’s article on Alain Badiou’s book “In Praise of Love.” In the article Popova notes the following:

A century after Tolstoy wrote to Gandhi that “love is the only way to rescue humanity from all ills,” Badiou argues that love is the most potent antidote to the self-interest that dominates the modern world and our greatest hope for bridging the gaping divide between self and other: “Provided it isn’t conceived only as an exchange of mutual favours, or isn’t calculated way in advance as a profitable investment, love really is a unique trust placed in chance. It takes us into key areas of the experience of what is difference and, essentially, leads to the idea that you can experience the world from the perspective of difference.”

I like to think that love does allow us the perspective of difference, but that it also invites us to celebrate sameness and that often it is sameness that forges connection that in turn allows for the openness and discovery of difference.

If we think about our sameness as citizens of the world is it not easier to relate to the plight of our neighbours? We are mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, sisters, brothers, members of villages of a sort. Yet the difference of experience and expectation and likelihood of life is also a beacon drawing our attention to our global family. I was talking with friends the other day about how we don’t have villages to raise our children in, or even a sense of neighbourhood so much. It’s a shame and it’s an invitation to try and influence social evolution but that no doubt suggests more than talk. As the seasons change and time rolls on we should try and include in the rhythm of our lives a reaching out for sameness, a reaching out to make difference, on whatever scale.

We cannot stop the winter or the summer from coming. We cannot stop the spring or the fall or make them other than they are. They are gifts from the universe that we cannot refuse. But we can choose what we will contribute to life when each arrives. – Gary Zukav

As we move through the Spring towards the Summer in Australia, bubbling along on the rhythm of rain and drought, growth and dryness, the calling of the beach and the cooling of well leaved trees, we could expand our own life rhythms to include the beat of others and think about how we can contribute to life on a broader scale, even through small actions.

The Spring brings with it the breaking through of new potential and life. And we’re wanting to be open to the same thing happening in our pursuit of delivering on the promise to improve child survival. if you’d like to know more about this or how you can be involved then check out the Building Bridges citizen led initiative. There’s plenty of opportunity for contributing in the way you can to conversations, through photographs, by tweeting etc. Check it out here on the Building Bridges Blog or on the Building Bridges Facebook page.

I started this blog post just intending to put up some photographs I was sorting through while I was on a teleconference earlier today…but sometimes the signs point to love and why ignore that? I don’t think our villages and communities and globe will feel the weight of too much love, pile it on, I’d much rather hear a good news story than what I’ve been seeing in the paper lately! And in the meantime, here’s those photos from the Wollongong Harbour taken during a Spring stroll!

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