“If you inherently long for something, become it first. If you want gardens, become the gardener. If you want love, embody love. If you want mental stimulation, change the conversation. If you want peace, exude calmness. If you want to fill your world with artists, begin to paint. If you want to be valued, respect your own time. If you want to live ecstatically, find the ecstasy within yourself. This is how to draw it in, day by day, inch by inch.” — Victoria Erickson
"It has frequently been remarked, about my own writings, that I emphasize the notion of attention. This began simply enough: to see that the way the flicker flies is greatly different from the way the swallow plays in the golden air of summer. It was my pleasure to notice such things, it was a good first step. But later, watching M. when she was taking photographs, and watching her in the darkroom, and no less watching the intensity and openness with which she dealt with friends, and strangers too, taught me what real attention is about. Attention without feeling, I began to learn, is only a report. An openness – an empathy – was necessary if the attention was to matter. Such openness and empathy M. had in abundance, and gave away freely. All the years I knew her she had this gift, which is also sometimes a burden, with our life friends, with me, and with the faces and even the objects that found their way into her pictures. I was in my late twenties and early thirties, and well filled with a sense of my own thoughts, my own presence. I was eager to address the world of words – to address the world with words. Then M. instilled in me this deeper level of looking and working, of seeing through the heavenly visibles to the heavenly invisibles."
Personally, I am on a mission to popularise three philosophical propositions: the self does not exist, so abandon your fantasies of ego; the world is in a constant flux, so abandon your axieties about permanence; and it is not possible to satisfy the soul, so abandon ideas of radically transforming the world, and focus instead on attitudes of repair and care.
The ability to articulate what you think and how you feel with certainty exemplifies patience and commitment to growth. Being vague with our desires and areas of focus frees us from accountability and ultimately lands as avoidance. It is increasingly rare & beautiful to be decided.
Your life is your spiritual path. Don’t be quick to abandon it for bigger and better experiences. You are getting exactly the experiences you need to grow. If your growth seems to be slow or uneventful for you, it is because you have not fully embraced the situations and relationships at hand. To know the self is to allow everything, to embrace the totality of who we are—all that we think and feel, all that we fear, all that we love.