Continuing on the unmarked path

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

7 AM. If I slow down any more, I’ll be going backwards. I haven’t even looked at my agenda for days. Not only snowbound but in neutral.

You have had a long sabbatical now. From the end of 2005 to now is four years plus. From leaving Nancy D, 10 years plus. Even from Kelly, nearly 6 years. Isn’t that a good deal of time for you to be settling in?

Enough time than I’d have expected to have accomplished more than I have to date.

Not true. You would have expected, and did expect, to accomplish something other than what you did accomplish to date. You were thinking in terms of books, we remind you.

Yes, I see. Well, — continue.

You are still on your unmarked path – scarcely could you call it a road – to a destination unknown to you and, may we say, long unsuspected. You cannot therefore expect to know where you are or what you are doing or why or how long you will be until you reach whatever destination you have set out for. Consider it like being on a wagon train. You trust your guides and you work with your fellow emigrants.

I was put in mind of the Heartlines course I did in 2005. I stood up and spoke of us as being like a wagon train. And remembering that could have sent me to remembering the others. That was the wagon train where I knew more than half the participants.

And, writing the date above suddenly “you remember” the date in 1983 when you left Human Services in New Jersey for the final time, a date you suddenly remembered, talking to your sister the other day. Why?

Why? You are as much as telling me that you’re putting it into my mind, and then you’re asking me why?

That’s right. Why?

Well – maybe to remind me that I have a store of memories I don’t pay enough attention to?

Partly.

To say that slowing down could open them up to me in a new, more reflective way?

Partly.

The skills I’ve been learning by teaching would help me here, wouldn’t they? The concept of scripts, for instance. The thought of what could my audience get out of whatever I tell them.

Don’t go too far afield. For the moment, stay with what you have learned by teaching.

Stay with slowing down, you mean.

You just glanced at an earlier page, from last year. Surprised yourself to see that you had already given up the idea of immediately writing another book. It isn’t important, when something happened, except as context.

You want to expand that a little?

Your voracious reading of American history provided you with context, so that when you think of an event, or one is referred to, you have a three-dimensional view – perhaps we should say a four dimensional view, in that where it is in time is a part of your view – rather than a two- or one-dimensional view. You know how this makes it all realer, more solid, more alive to you. And you tend to think you would benefit by doing the same for your own life. You wonder at how much of your life seems to vanish from memory once lived – even things very recent. But, consider.

Your life’s events are external to you

Try that again? I think I lost the line –

No, your life’s events are external to you. The meaning of the events, the psychological context, does not exist as a chronological

I know I lost it, that time.

Just slow down a little more and relax. Get some more coffee, turn on your computer, do the things that are irritants in the back of your mind, like writing the date at the top of the page was, and allow it to come forth. You know the routine.

— Your life’s events are external. Your experience of them is internal. Clearly this cannot be the case for historical events.

I feel a sort of churning to explore aspects like the healing of Joseph in 1863.

Resist that side-trail.

You know that unresolved feelings have no time. They are present until resolved. Therefore – though you haven’t thought of it this way – therefore so are the associated events present until the accompanying feelings are resolved. But when the feelings recede, so do the associations, and this is as it should be. What is held closest to hand is that which is most important to deal with. The next thing is always the most important thing. And the sentence may be read in reverse order. You never need to cast about to see what you should be putting your attention to. It will come into focus automatically as it is allowed to by the process of your removing the screens, scripts and repressions that prevent it from surfacing.

Rereading this from the beginning, I get the sense that you are saying, let go the construction or even the remembering of a chronology, so that I can concentrate on staying open and fluid.

Yes. Your teaching of how to do it has all the notes you need embedded in various journals whenever you choose to reconstruct your path, as one example of the path. But to try to hold it is to use valuable energy that otherwise could be put to new uses.

Well, at your service. We’ll see where we wind up.

Just merely enjoy your life day by day. Just as you do not live in fear of conspiracies or catastrophes so do not live in plans and expectations.

  1. Thinking of being here, not needing to go anywhere or do anything, I spontaneously heard myself say, “what a great life.” I’m very fortunate.

One thought on “Continuing on the unmarked path

  1. Things that went into my journal: “You know that unresolved feelings have no time. They are present until resolved.”
    Also: “The next thing is always the most important thing … You never need to cast about to see what you should be putting your attention to. It will come into focus automatically …”
    And: “… what a great life. I’m very fortunate.”

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