There are two quotes that have always hovered in the background of my life.
“The unexamined life is not worth living.”
Greek philosopher in Athens (469 BC – 399 BC)
“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”
~Henry David Thoreau
US Transcendentalist author (1817 – 1862)
When I stumbled upon these sayings years ago, they served as confirmation of a path I had already chosen. Still, it’s always nice to have such prestigious and intelligent men backing you up! However, I would have to confess here that more than anything, I probably owe my life quest to those ancient emotions: fear and panic. Always worrying that life would pass me by and I wouldn’t notice. I am not an adrenaline junkie or even much of an explorer but I still want to experience life as much as I can. Without a lot of money or time to spend on some sort of adventure, what is left?
There is a message in our media that goes something like this, what makes life special are big moments: getting married, traveling the world, having a baby, getting a promotion, fame, fortune, that sort of thing. There’s no denying that those happenings are exciting, but for me every day life has become fascinating and, (most of the time), quite enough to inspire me.
I find that living my life with a certain wide awake consciousness of all that is around me together with the self awareness of what I am feeling and thinking in reaction to it, create a constant dynamic that is endlessly challenging as well as entertaining. A successful integration of what I call “outer and inner” experiences demands a balance in the psyche that can be understood but not easily achieved. Just the act of trying leads one to live their life on a deeper level.
Living deeper in the outer world is to have an awareness of one’s surroundings in the physical realm: buildings and furnishings to landscapes and flora. Then the addition of the population in that physical domain, the people or animals present and finally, what they are thinking or feeling.
Nature plays a big role in my outer experiences. The color and variety in the natural world is always interesting and to be aware of what is happening right outside your door is to be fully a part of life itself. Nature is our relation, its processes are our processes and to be involved in nature is to capture a sense of belonging that tends to elude us. The passing seasons, the weather, are all an important part of my observances here.
Living mindful and squarely in one’s own truth within the outer world of politics, society, and culture is sometimes very challenging indeed. Many times I have found myself at odds with a friend, my community or even my country. If I am lucky I can understand their point of view. It has helped to cultivate an open mind or maybe more importantly, an open heart. For all our rhetoric we really aren’t all that different at our base. During my hours of contemplation I try and find that center line, a place we might always reach across and connect time and again with our so-called opponents.
Living deeper in the inner world consists of becoming an observer of your self. Being willing to feel one’s own feelings without reservation, to fully understand where these feelings originate and then to take responsibility for them at all times. Awareness and understanding of one’s thoughts too, the reason we think what we do, together with the idea that there are other opinions out there contrary to ours that, (whether we like it or not) have merit.
I am an astrologer and as such, I look at the world through this lens as well. Whatever we study, be it science, music, or religion, colors what we see and changes the way we think. For me, astrology has become, among other things, a way of looking at the world through a symbolic language. Knowledge of astrology is another tool in my cart on the path to a better understanding of everything that happens to me throughout my day. It adds another descriptive level to my experiences and within its code I can watch the gears of the universe working and churning.
As you navigate this site you will notice (at least) three distinct categories. They are:
- Living Deeper: general ideas and musings about life
- Astrology: posts that teach or talk about astrology
- The Weigh to Eat: I am a bit of a foodie and a vegetarian. I like to eat well, but I also like to eat as healthy as I can. Posts with this label share ideas and recipes that I have found worthy. Eating well is part of living deeper too!
Living deeper is the assignment I have given myself in this lifetime. Do I always achieve it? Oh, heck no. I can be just as frustrated and petty as the next person, but having this sign post in front of me throughout my journey serves to remind me and direct me to a place of balance and satisfaction that, if I choose to follow it, makes for a more meaningful life. Come on along.
Text and Photos (except quotes) Copyrighted 2012 CLCW