Chaos – eternal, immense, uncreated – from which all is born; nether darkness nor light, nor damp nor dry, not hot nor cold, but all things mingled, eternally one and limitless.
Chaos was the beginning. Within her void slumbered, in undifferentiated fusion, all the elements, the potential, the seed of a person. Yet, some say that Chaos was born from Mist and that Mist was the first to exist.
Mist is symbolic of things indeterminate, or the fusing together of the elements of air and water, and the inevitable absorbing of the outlines of each aspect and each particular phase of the evolution process.
It is also said that Chaos existed from the beginning together with Nyx, the goddess of Night, mother of Erebus, god of darkness, and Tartarus, the underworld.
Or is Chaos the soul’s state of potentiality – eternal, vast, uncreated, where all is intermingled, folding and unfolding, evolving and enveloping – prior to the birth to the unconscious?
stillness– in the depths of the lake billowing clouds
*David G. Lanoue (a translator of Japanese haiku, a teacher of English and world literature, a writer of haiku and “haiku novels) writes that this haiku serves as a substitute for experience–or, perhaps, a clear window into experience–allowing the reader, in contemplation, to see that same lake, those same clouds, and to feel the serenity and stillness of the moment.
“… literature provided me with alternate threads by which to darn a harmonious, yet delusional, understanding of death, of fatherless children, of a family. To move into this realm is to be cuddled in the arms of a chair, mesmerized by the pages of a book unfolding like an accordion, embraced by a transparent sound barrier, and transported into fantasies found through fictional characters. While my mind’s eye grasped the hand of my naïve emotional self and together we observed the telling of storied lives, there was a seeking mind that simultaneously identified revealing markers to create a map, not to a place of hidden treasures, but to a place that felt like a home.
I was six years old the first time this happened. Martin and Cooney’s Five Little Peppers and How they Grew eased my aloneness with the emptiness left by my father’s death and filled it with a reformulated concept of family. Later, it was Alcott’s characters within Little Women and Little Men who gave me permission to vicariously be a fatherless child united with loving adults who validated sacrifice, patience, and compassion. Burnett’s themes of grief and loss within The Little Princess identified the behaviors, choices, and attitudes necessary to survive the evils of dark despair until the rescue by an unknown and unidentified savior, just and righteous.”
~B Catherine Koeford, A Mediative Journey with Saldage homesickness for a place, a time, a person that cannot be
“…to remain alive is to be subject to the grinding force of memory. Day and night the millstone turns, shaping the soul and softening the heart. To some, this going around and around the same subject may seem like emotional paralysis. But there is also something freeing about this attachment to remembrance. One day, one hour, one child, keep cutting through to the present. All other days take shape around this circle of emptiness.” ~V Schwarcz (Bridge Across Broken Time)
I was a child, Nostalgia seemed a small stamp: I was here… My mother was there.
When I grew up Nostalgia became a ticket: I was here… My bride was there.
Years later, Nostalgia was a little tomb: I was outside… My mother was inside.
And now, My nostalgia is a shallow strait: I am at here… The mainland is there.
~ Yu Guang Zhong
“The Chinese expression for “nostalgia” is xiangchou, literally “village sadness.” …xiangchou describes the grief that accompanies the traveler who cannot find a way back to the home village…[it] is not a geographical predicament but a spiritual state of being. First he finds himself outside the mother as a tiny emblem of apartness, then he is the man who contemplates her tomb. The shallow waters of the Taiwan straits are, similarly, not only a spatial divide between the island and the mainland but a reminder of the longing for, and the impossibility of going back to, ancestral roots.” *
Metaphor ferries memory across time. It allows us to enter worlds of imagination and feeling that might otherwise be closed to us …
… memory can take refuge in silence…*
The rememberer … is a person who defies the natural laws of decay, one who makes of the heart a more hospitable ground for traces of the past… The rememberer might also be a lonely rebel against the passage of time. To resist the erasers occasioned by this passage, memories have to be written down.
Although yi (memory) brings up unsettling emotions, and simcha (joy) depends on wiping away old aches, remembrance remains the only way not to betray the past.