Walking may ache the soles, but certainly benefits the soul. I am curious about the human condition, you may have picked up on this if you follow my blog. Since losing my pigtails I have wondered about what it is that is the ‘isness’ of me, and by extension, the ‘youness’ of you. Where is the location of my personality? What is soul ? How much consiousness does a dog have? How much self awareness does a dog have? My dog seems to have as much of a personality as I do, he sulks, he talks ( really), and he has days where he is willing to socialise with his canine companions and days when he is not. So how do I know that? By living with him. And if dogs exhibit these capacities, then what about sheep and cows, birds and lizards?
As I was walking by the falls that you can see in the accompanying picture, I was considering why water holds such a fascination for me, and I know I am not alone in that. Water, fire , clouds are all non animal, non plant entities that fascinate, and I think that may be because they somehow connect the consciousness with a plane of thinking that elevates us beyond the everyday business of supporting ourselves. Water moves, it’s fluidity, it’s flux are not just a metaphor of living, they ARE living. By experiencing the ‘isness’ of water, we are in a different consciousness that is meditative, restorative. I wonder if this is the stuff of religious ecstasy. As I was mesmerised by the action of one small waterfall, and moved my gaze to the right, I was aware of the whole landscape in my view shifting, as though it were breathing, it moved within my looking upon it. Now I know that that hallucination was most likely due to a slight astigmatism, it was a product of my brain compensating for a flaw in my eyesight. Knowing that doesn’t make the feelings of awe and contentment any less, but it does preclude the paranormal explanation of me being in a ‘magical’ situation. For me, nature is the magic, the doorway to a consciousness that unites the livingness of everything within it. Simples. I run to the poets, and here is Wordsworth, and an excerpt from’ LINES WRITTEN A FEW MILES ABOVE TINTERN ABBEY, ON REVISITING THE BANKS OF THE WYE DURING A TOUR,’ July 13, 1798.
And even the motion of our human blood
Almost suspended, we are laid asleep
In body, and become a living soul:
While with an eye made quiet by the power
Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,
We see into the life of things.