Nothing satisfies me more than to discover the world in a grain of sand. A few moments of lived life can reveal the fundamental laws underlying our embodied awareness. Looking at the small and seemingly insignificant has the advantage of being available any time and everywhere. It also requires that we slow down to see it, and by using words we can free its treasures from the grip of irrelevance. In my newsletters and blogs, what I prefer and most of the time endeavor to write about is just that.
The grain of sand is this present moment, and this present moment is Grand Central Station, the nodal point where all the energies of reality converge in the complex human experience of being alive. Our evolutionary and cultural conditioning, our conditioned patterns of behavior, movement, thought and feeling, our memories and anticipations, and the novel experiences we never encountered before, all converge in this nodal point of a multidimensional continuum called reality.
Reflecting on the present moment, which extends to a few seconds of lived life, is like unpacking a symphony, listening to its interpretation by the orchestra of our organism, and realizing by the end of it that one has penetrated reality, truth and time to its timeless essence.
To describe these moments adequately words need to meet the expectations of eloquent discourse. They should delightfully embody the liberating lightness of being, and be free to imperfectly hint at the unspeakable truth of stillness and silence. They can truly be what they are supposed to be, signifiers suspended between what they signify and the consciousness they both structure and express in space and time.
Do you hope to glance at this newsletter between two other urgent emails in the long list of things you have to get done today? If that is the case, don’t hesitate to unsuscribe, because I do not write for you. No, sorry I am wrong – I do write for you, but for the authentic you who is perhaps buried under the rubble of the hectic shell of you skidding through time on the surface of life. I write for the you who yearns to hear the faint whispers of the soul, and that you, the ‘real you’ you may barely know, demands that you slow down, that you treat language mindfully with the respect it deserves. For language is your soul’s translator who shapes your consciousness in such as a way as to become intelligible to others as you express yourself.
I like to believe that my words are not facile infomercials for the addicted monkey mind, but that they invite you to slow down, and according to your needs, to give each sentence the contemplative space it deserves. I hope you take the time for reflection, the time to mindfully engage in the movement of grabbing a dictionary if necessary and look up a word you may not be familiar with. I am not trying to be cryptic and complicated for the hell of it. On the contrary, I am trying to be as precise as reality can bare, as evocative as language allows and as simple as the complexity of the bodymind demands. But I am also trying to do justice to the complexity of truth.
Sami languages of Norway, Finland and Sweden have as many as 300 words for snow. If you don’t need to penetrate the depths of truth you don’t need a sophisticated language. Short soundbites sounding like horses slurping water are enough to grunt something irrelevant to your neighbour. But short soundbites do not capture the finesses of what human consciousness is capable of expressing. To know snow in all its complexity you need apparently 300 words, and to express the magical details of truth that are encapsulated in the flow of a present moment, you need not only many words, but also creative and novel ways of stringing them together.
Mindfulness has to extend to our capacity to formulate what often seems unspeakable, and to express what’s nameless through the power of metaphor. Our use of language reaches its full potential when we mindfully give it the time it deserves to evoke in us through the power of reflection an appreciation of the full complexity of reality and truth. Then, reading becomes a meditation in its own right with the power to reveal to us the great mystery of Being.
Copyright © 2016 by Dr. Stéphane Treyvaud. All rights reserved.