Presence

I am Luke Skywalker.

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“This one a long time have I watched. All his life has he looked away… to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. What he was doing. Adventure. Heh! Excitement. Heh! A Jedi craves not these things.”

So sayeth Yoda.

Like Luke, I have been guilty of staring off at the horizon, imagining myself in a completely different life. Never satisfied with what I have. Always thinking about what I don’t.

Today I follow the advice of Raymond Chandler, who says I should block out time just for writing. I don’t have to write anything. But I can’t do anything else during this time.

Presence is a word that gets thrown around a lot. Two definitions come to mind. The first is sort of a code word for building an audience, for capturing people’s attention. I guess this blog is my attempt to have an online presence. Along with my social media pages.

Then there is the spiritual definition of being present, of living in the moment. I find this message most often accompanied by pictures of people doing yoga, meditating, laying on the beach, or some combination of all three.

For me, it is easy to be present when I am on the beach. That is a moment I want to enjoy.

It has been hard for me to find pictures to share. Not that there is a shortage of things to see. But trying to pair images with the words on the page. To have an image that captures the essence of “presence”. Like doing yoga on the beach. Or standing on top of a mountain.

Would the message of presence be as powerful when combined with pictures of me sitting at my desk, struggling to write this? Or sitting in an office, poring over lines of code, looking for one tiny little mistake that is throwing my entire program for a loop?

I don’t want to stay present for that. Why shouldn’t my mind wander off to faraway lands and thrilling heroics?

But that is when presence is most valuable, isn’t it?

So I sit and stare at the blank page.

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