Do all prisoners plot escape, or mindlessly put strokes on their cell walls – waiting out days until they are free?
Sure, they should sit happily, being rehabilitated, schooled, re-trained or disciplined. To make right their dastardly deeds. But what if they’ve done no wrong?
Rightly or wrongly imprisoned, don’t they all want out?
I believe a lot of people are imprisoned with no jail or razor-wire in sight, no crime committed other than living their life without control of it, shackled by imaginary forces that lock them in place tighter than steel locks.
If their prison has no walls, their jailer holds no ring of keys, their sentence is so indefinite – imprisoned perhaps by fear of what is outside their prison wall, fear of life outside their jailer’s grasp, or fear of charting their own course alone, what then?
Is their jailer a person, or mindset, or their own mind/body construct?
Someone wrote me with these words – so similar to ones I’ve heard before: “working on getting my life in better control . . . ”
Stalled, slowed, or frozen – we’ve all been there, done that.
What is that motionless state, of not acting, not doing, not moving, not moving-on?
Can we grow while sitting still, can’t we make progress while sitting motionless – just thinking about it, just thinking?
I was looking at a photo of Rodin’s sculpture The Thinker – considering muscles in those legs I must conclude that guy didn’t sit around thinking much. And while Rodin was chipping away at that block of stone, I doubt he was sitting idle much.
What was Rodin thinking?
I wonder, about that. I read about his obsession with Camille Claudel, his pupil, his muse, and how their heart-wringing relationship ended with his farewell piece .
Reading about Rodin got me thinking, not so much about heart-wringing experiences, but about action, about having a vision of what you want to create and then carving it. Not everyone’s vision will be a great work of art, but carving our thoughts our of wood or stone, in butter or plasticine – what we see should be what we feel, not how someone else sees things, how we stay true to ourselves, not true to someone else.
Thinking requires action, I think. Even if we sit motionless, stuck, imprisoned or glued to our spot, our brain can take us somewhere, imagination and thought can make choices, paint dreams and make them come true, can’t it?
Demonstrative steps don’t have to be long athletic leaps. They can be taken with the mind as much as by the body. But where do they lead, to what purpose, to what end do we apply our efforts?
Getting to a goal – however small, is a noble exercise. Unless the goal was something we considered distasteful, however modest the goal, we tend to applaud our friends, family, complete strangers and especially ourselves.
Was the goal met?
Was the goal much of a stretch?
Was it really a goal?
Or was it a strategic step taken on the path to a goal?
Or a step taken, knowing it was a good one/right one, without yet knowing how to define the goal?
Taking two steps forward, then one back, isn’t anything new. Like a stalled turtle, sometimes sticking our neck out is just to take a look around – a preamble to actually taking a step.
There is no escape for any of us – trapped, as we are, inside our own body. Our physical body, our body of work, our container of baggage and joys, our celebration of everything we’ve ever done or ever will, here it is inside us.
Are we imprisoned, or free?
Has someone locked us away, road-blocked us off our path, has our body let us down – or are our prison walls drawn so high by our own mind-pencil that we cannot even dream of scaling them?
Who is to say growth happening requires steps to be taken in any direction at all?
P.S. speaking of chipping away, and driving and putting, I was invited to golf this morning (thanks PT) . . . early tee-time, gotta run!
column written/ published from Calgary
morning walk: 9C/49F, calm crisp hit my face while early sun warmed my back – the long hill, up and back, Gusta wanting to lunge, to greet and meet, the few pedestrians we encountered . . . inspiration was out this morning
What if we could bottle some of the good feelings to drink them when we need them? Enjoy!, AG, Playa del Carmen, Mex.
Well, I am stepping out here and may be placing myself on a limb but my faith is strong. My footsteps are ordered by the Lord. Nothing is more confirmational than my recent, well 7 months ago recent, season of one-leggedness. I have looked back on the path that brought me here and have been able to recognize the years I spent doing all the things my family warned me against doing; surfing and rock climbing, gave me the ability to balance even when it doesn't seem physically possible to do so. It is why I can continue to cook, garden, clean the house, etc. So I believe that my creator knew this season was awaiting me and gave me the courage to go ahead and do those things of my youth that I so desperately wanted to do in spite of them not pleasing my family. I have carried that courage along with my will to persevere all through this ride I call life. So, my path is onward and upward and filled with anticipation for what lies around the next corner. GW, Brady, Tx.
Comments, pro or con, are always welcomed, and are most often published the following day under COMMENTS RECEIVED, so please, add your thoughts to the discussion . . . use this reply address: email@example.com
Comments always welcome - please contribute to the discussion.