Perpetuity

If somebody asked me what is my greatest fear?

This would probably be it.

Image by Siyan Ren

A state of stasis. A state where you mistake swaying up and down with the waves as drifting. The waves being time. Time is always flowing. It’s in the nature. So is the course of planetary bodies. But humans, not so necessarily. Man always has a choice. The real test, and inertia is captivating. Inertia and perpetuity together are devastating.

Our body grows because our cells are programmed to. The same way any other living creature, botanical or zoological does. So this form of change is an attribute of living things, and there is nothing voluntary about it.

Perpetuity to me is a state where you stop being influenced by a certain kind of stimulus. It can be thought of as a response to a painfully shattering experience. Something strong enough to alter the natural tendency of a man to react.

I think at some point all of us take refuge in it. When we think we’ve had enough, when we think we will take the right of hurting us away from other people for good, we’re subconsciously drifting towards perpetuity. And it’s scary. Because it’s unnatural.

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Image by Luis Alfonso Orellana

It’s like painting a sun and a moon on two separate walls of a room, and then timely facing one of them so as to simulate day and night. But no matter how close to reality you draw, it is still a painting. It is a simulation. This room is your heart. And depriving it of real sunlight to breathe in, and real moonlight to sigh upon, is causing it to wither away. It is dying out craving for reality. The real feel of things.

Have you ever been in and out of this state? Do you know what it feels like? Let me know what you think about it. For me, I want to believe that there is a way out of it. Even if you drift into it at some point, after your recess, you can finally drift out of it. Being stuck at this simulation of living while each day is a day less of your life on Earth is both terrifying and sad.

In this context consider one of my favourite thought provoking quotes by Mark Nepo from The Book of Awakening:

We waste so much energy trying to cover up who we are when beneath every attitude is the want to be loved, and beneath every anger is a wound to be healed and beneath every sadness is the fear that there will not be enough time.

When we hesitate in being direct, we unknowingly slip something on, some added layer of protection that keeps us from feeling the world, and often that thin covering is the beginning of a loneliness which, if not put down, diminishes our chances of joy.

It’s like wearing gloves every time we touch something, and then, forgetting we chose to put them on, we complain that nothing feels quite real. Our challenge each day is not to get dressed to face the world but to unglove ourselves so that the doorknob feels cold and the car handle feels wet and the kiss goodbye feels like the lips of another being, soft and unrepeatable.

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