LONGING FOR THE SEA


We long to sail on the sea of life and yet we are afraid of leaving our safe harbor

WISE WORDS FOUND VIA NEW YORK ENCOUNTER:

Longing for the Sea and yet <<not>> Afraid

We embark on the journey of life spurred by a promise of happiness in our heart. But then, fear of the unknown makes us hesitant, especially if the destination is not certain. Desire chocked by fear appears to be the common experience of our time.

We strive to build relationships and overcome divisions, and yet we end up stifling true dialogue, due to preconceptions or conformity to the demands of political correctness. We dream of achieving greatness in some dimension of our lives, and yet we settle for a comfortable life. We ache for something new (and constantly check our smartphones in expectation), and yet we abhor events that are out of our control. We crave stability, but we are unsure that what is true today will still be true tomorrow. We strive to be more "mindful" in the present, and yet our mind is always fleeing from the here and now. We desire belonging, and yet we dread relinquishing our freedom. We long to encounter a lover, a friend, a father who will break through our radical solitude, and yet we are afraid of losing ourselves.

We long to sail on the sea of life and yet we are afraid of leaving our safe harbor.

 

A LESSON IN HUMILITY


 LOVELY IMAGE VIA  SIGNORA E MARE

LOVELY IMAGE VIA SIGNORA E MARE

The title of this particular entry was written on 11 October, 2014 as a draft. I have no idea what was on my mind that day, nor what impulse drove me to write it, but as I encounter the words today, I find myself in need of so much of that very virtue; in need of so much humility...

It is so easy to get caught up in a world of busy tasks and little whims. It is easy to forget where one stands in relation to the entire universe, and the smallness; yet greatness of our ever searching soul.

Oh how do I need to be reminded of the simple beauty in life; even as I share this little project, which promotes that very ideology. I am grateful for the great community I have come to know; one who shares the same longing for what is true, good, and beautiful. Let us remind one another; lest we lose sight...

A CALL TO BE AWAKE


 IMAGE: ELEANOR HARDWICK

IMAGE: ELEANOR HARDWICK

And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places.
— Roald Dahl

BY: MARISOL B.

Many of us have ran across individuals and situations filled with a je ne sais quois; something out of the ordinary. We have all been around people that seem to be in a state of grace which helps them navigate through circumstances in an almost seamless manner.

We wonder how they may reach such a state of peace and we leave their presence wanting a bit more of that for our own lives. During an interview, writer Dan Millman elaborated on the topic of interior peace and mentioned a story of inquiry; where a soul who wondered the identity of another; so distinct, received the answer, "I am awake."

What exactly does it mean to be awake? A shot or two of espresso every morning might make our brains more alert, but it is our ability to intentionally notice life in its fullness, that brings about a wider readiness to conquer each part of the day.

OUR THOUGHT PROCESS

During a recent research, UCLA professor Alan Castel found interesting data surrounding the way we filter information, pay attention to certain details, or assume how things should be, based on accumulated knowledge.

Our brains filter information which we think might not be relevant to our most important needs or wants, and miss valuable details on the periphery that would at times allow for great insight.

When we are children, we are fortunate to constantly explore the world around us, and as we grow older, the accumulation of information demands a different thought process; therefore, the option to maintain a sense of wonder becomes available through intentional behavior.

NOTICING PERIPHERIES

To be awake, is to step outside of our busy brains for a bit and to allow ourselves to take notice. It is to raise our conscious thought process during moments of our day, so that we may give space to otherwise missed possibilities.

We are called to focus and prioritize, but also to avoid tunnel vision and awaken to the details around us.

Let us navigate through either tempest or calm waters with ease, awareness, and great joy.

THROUGH A RED DOOR


 Photo Credit:  Michael McKann

Photo Credit: Michael McKann

By Marisol B.

These days have been filled with news about life and death, and as I searched through my files to find words of comfort, I ran across a piece titled Through a Red Door; written many years ago. I thought it would be good to share, along with the above image; which sits on my desk as a reminder of what lies behind this mysterious and beautiful door:

THROUGH A RED DOOR

Look at that door, where does it lead?

Should I ring the bell, or do you hold the key?

A tall red door, whose other side is completely unknown,

but whose crimson color is so attractive; so mysterious.

I have knocked a couple of times,

and I have overheard laughter on the other side.

It is red as the blood it was tinted with;

symbolic of the love it portrays.

It is the door to heaven, the door to eternity.

But if I ring the bell, or if I find the key, and if I am invited in...

and my laughter is heard from the other side one day...

MAKING SENSE OF LIFE


 Image by Sauerbruch Hutton

Image by Sauerbruch Hutton

This past weekend, we paid a visit to the library and as I perused a few shelves, I came across a few Philosophy periodicals. One of them had an intriguing fictitious conversation between philosophy professors and Socrates in the midst of Elysian Fields. As they exchanged a few ideas regarding Secondary Qualities; they each provided insight around the long asked question - If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear, does it still make a sound?

Reading this made me ponder for a while and  allowed me the great opportunity to remember the wonder around the very fact that we are given life. It is through this very quality that we are able to sense our surroundings. Our very existence provides a myriad of possibilities; that would otherwise be soundless, tasteless, or colorless.

I could not help but be grateful for my senses. I was glad to be given the opportunity to perceive the world and its beauty through touch, sight, hear, taste, and smell. It reminded me to stop and be a lot more conscious and aware about this gift on a daily basis.

 Image by Mabry Campbell

Image by Mabry Campbell

Our library visit was followed by beautiful prayer within one of my favorite chapels. Captivating light, heavenly music, the smell of incense, and the taste of the eternal. I was then inspired by our intuitive and spiritual ability to sense, not in a temporal manner, but in a more transcendent way, I was reminded of the possibility of life eternal...

 

 

THE BEAUTY OF EXPLORATION


The more we know, the more we realize there is to know.
— Silvia Earle

Lately, I have been pondering a lot about the vast outer space, and the depths of the ocean; whether through an eloquent talk by Physicist, Bryan Cox, or an interview of Oceanographer, Silvia Earle. I had began drafting a story on this very topic, and one night; as I resolved to continue the task, a movie began playing on the nearby screen which I found quite fitting.

It was Chasing Mavericks; which I had watched a couple of years ago. The beautiful message and photography captured my heart anew, and I was left thoroughly inspired. As the movie finished, I refocused on the task of writing; only to realize, that the next movie to play would be; Alfonso Cuaron's, Gravity.

There is no coincidence in this beautiful sequence. Both of these touch on the value of life and our vulnerability within two environments; where oxygen is scarce, and survival becomes an act of the will. Both teach us that fear is to be conquered as we forge ahead. The deep ocean and the vast outer space...

 

Our place within this vastness

As Sylvia Earle (Oceanographer, Aquanaut, and Conservationist) describes; since the middle of the 20th century, we have learned more about the ocean, our place in the universe, and other people. Only about 5% of the ocean has been seen; let alone explored. We don't really understand how it works; yet, we must allow each new discovery to bring us closer to our identity as humanity, and grow in our desire to do what is right and just.

At the same time outer space was being discovered, Sylvia was exploring the depths of the ocean, and I cannot help but marvel at the fact that both of these hold a mysterious character; yet, every time we reach out farther into its vastness, we find out more about ourselves. This in turn increases our appreciation for life, as we remember our own dignity and the value of our own planet.

 

THE IMPORTANCE OF EXPLORATION

Exploration and research hold an important and beautiful place within our economy. Silvia Earle shares, that the ocean drives the way the world works. It drives climate, oxygen replenishment, and food change. The ocean is critical to our lives, health and economy.

Bryan Cox in turn, says exploration provides inspiration for engineering achievement, and driving innovation (quantum physics/mechanics). It also provides great perspective on our own identity. Just think of how beautiful it was to witness earth from outer space for the first time.

Two recent visits helped my own pondering in simple, but deeply human ways. The first one; at the 9/11 Memorial Museum, as I listened to a recording from an astronaut that witnessed the event from a space station. He added that despite it all, NYC still looked beautiful, that the entire earth still held much beauty. His words allowed me much perspective.

The second; when I found myself mesmerized by beautiful species, as I paid a visit to the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. I never cease to be amazed at the perfection of all creation, and as I captured an image of medusozoa; gliding about the water, I was filled with wonder and a sense of exploration.

Apart from its beauty and inspiration, the sea plays a critical life-sustaining role. The more we realize this, the better our chances in building a beautiful future.

I invite you to ponder further on this topic and to explore the great beauty that surrounds us.

#THESEA

We will continue the conversation throughout the entire month of September. Join us via email, and social media, as we share about the ocean through writings, music, and art.

A BIRTHDAY REFLECTION

THOUGHTS ON THE MANY ASPECTS OF LIFE TO BE CELEBRATED

BY: MARISOL B.

BEAUTIFUL IMAGE VIA LEUIE

I woke up to a new day and to the celebration of another beautiful year. It has been a bit rainy; which is quite wonderful, as it makes for a great metaphor of life and growth.

I wanted to remain within warm and cozy covers, and as I laid reading kind birthday wishes from family and friends, I had an interior voice that invited me to spring out of bed and begin living the day.

As I allowed some light to enter the different rooms, I was suddenly reminded of a little song with the following lyrics:

A vivir, a vivir, a vivir; que la vida se te va, se te va, se te va; son tus días nada más, nada más, nada más; no los dejes escapar, escapar, escapar….

(Time to live, to live, to live, for life slips away, away, away; these days are only yours, only yours, only yours; do not let them escape, escape, escape…)

I was left with a feeling of great joy; for this is a little tune that I once heard my mother sing, when I was a young child. I quickly understood that she had subtly delivered her birthday wishes, and my heart kept the message within a place to be remembered.

We are what we celebrate, and I would like to celebrate the great gift of life and the opportunity to follow my individual purpose and mission.

After breakfast, I came across a little video of a generous lady who helped people in dire need. At first; compassion filled my mind and I had a couple of reflections, but I then allowed compassion to get into my heart and I was left with the clear reminder that there is much work to do. There is much beauty to be restored within this world and I must be more diligent in my mission.

I would like to invite you to join me, to be a little instrument for good; a light for others.

We are what we celebrate…… cheers to life!

SHINING BEAUTY INTO WHAT MANY FEAR

Every beautiful human person holds great purpose, but sometimes we allow fear to take over. Sometimes we listen too much to the outward noise and forget to look deep within; in order to fully understand, that every single one of us holds great purpose and dignity.

A pregnant mother was genuinely concerned, after finding out that her unborn child appeared to have a genetic disorder. She decided to write a letter to a national Down Syndrome Organization; asking for hope and guidance. The response she received, shines much light into an uncertain situation, and a creative agency was able to bring this story to life in a very beautiful way, with the below ad titled: DEAR FUTURE MOM.

CREDITS
Client: CoorDown
Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi Italy
Executive Creative Director: Agostino Toscana
Creative Directors: Luca Lorenzini, Luca Pannese
Art Director: Luca Pannese
Copywriter: Luca Lorenzini
Director: Luca Lucini
Production Company: The Family Film
Agency Producer: Sabrina Sanfratello
Head of TV: Raffaella Scarpetti
Original Music: Alessandro Cristofori, Diego Perugini for Stabbiolo Music
Postproduction: XChanges Vfx
Color Grading: Band
Audio Postproduction: Top Digital; Cat Sound International
Voiceover: Pasquale Anselmo

A BEAUTIFUL LOOK INTO WHAT IS INFINITE

Not long ago; at a little Italian caffè, I met Fillipo. He quickly introduced us to his profound writings, and we could not help but to share them within this very space...

vastness.jpg

VASTNESS

~by Fillipo E.

What are we searching for, if not for vastness?
For the unending promise of infinity.
To remove ourselves from the confines of freedom and to become it.
We are the stars.
A multitude of possibility. The infinitude of imagination.
To be directed is to be limited.
A poem previously written. A concerto already performed.
Afraid of what? Of whom? Fear is not a limitation, but a road mark.
We are afraid of the void.
Of the empty canvas crying for imagery.
Of the blank page longing for language.
Of the silent instrument desiring manipulation.
Oh, how we sell ourselves short of infinity.
How we fall victim to confinement, you and I.
Feet before the cliff.
Before the vastness.

EXPERIENCE BEAUTY

AN INVITATION TO LIVE AND EXPERIENCE BEAUTY

One of the goals of this space is to inspire beauty, so that each one of us lives and experiences it within our own lives and circumstances.

We find however that "passive consumption" is predominant among social media users; where scrolling through wonderful images posted by friends or strangers alike, provide a sense of loneliness and even depression for many.

  lovely image via    ignite light    &nbsp;

lovely image via ignite light

 

While it is beautiful to witness breathtaking images of faraway lands, summer resorts and serenity in the middle of Central Park, it is important to understand that what each of these pictures represent, is an experience.

We do not need to lay on a white sanded beach in order to experience beauty. We have the ability to find joy in simple everyday moments and details, and until we learn to look in the right places, we will be prey to continual social envy and the haunting thought that "someone else's life could be better".

There are so many beautiful images floating through cyberspace, and inspiration should come forth from each one of these, to live our own experience. BeautyFound looks to be a source of inspiration, so an invitation is extended to #findbeauty; even as you find yourself seating within a cubicle or wandering busy city streets. It only takes a minute to stop and look closer:

  • Look out your window: Many times we are so entertained by tasks, that we miss wonderful little details outside our own home.
  • Notice others: Whether you are walking down busy streets or at work, we tend to blur the many people that walk past us. Try to notice someone's beauty; whether external or internal, and see yourself reflected in them and connected through something small.
  • Mind your food: We do not need to go to a fancy restaurant or be on vacation to savor each meal. Even if you ordered Chinese takeout, make the effort to serve on a beautiful plate and consciously enjoy every bite.
  • Discover the new: Many times we are so accustomed to our surroundings, that we fail to notice beautiful details, both old and new. Cherish each object decorating your home, or look at your neighborhood with brand new eyes. There is always something new to discover.
  • Be inspired: Continue to scroll down beautiful and inspiring images. There are so many wonderful and talented people, you should be able to enjoy in an active; rather than passive manner.
  • Enhance your senses: After looking at your screen and being thoroughly inspired, plan a visit to an actual beautiful place. This could be a museum to experience and admire art installations,  a bookstore to flip through actual pages, or a park to connect with nature and the smell of grass or pine.

       So by all means, this an invitation to be present in the moment and experience a sense of joy.