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#tds200 @livedtime a walk in the snow

2 min read

Today, print the article, find a path, walk it and then sit down to enjoy the article after your walk. 

The walk round Ardinning today was transformed by the snow. The last time I was here is was damp and boggy. Much better walking today with the ground frozen under the new snow. The odd slippy bit.

The snow brings the attention closer. Shapes are smoothed out and detail emphasised. Sounds are muffled and amplified at the same time. Detail of a nearby hill looms out of the white making it hard to judge the distance. Falling snow seems to reflect the landscape into the sky.

I didn't print the linked passage, but read it with Reader View which cuts back distraction.

It seems fairly familiar ground to me, I've long thought walking as important in lots of ways. I tend toward the countryside and much shorted distances than Gros.

He dislikes an interrupted, uneven rhythm of a city walk. All my walks are interrupted, I stop, stare, snap pictures, examine droppings and dead animals. I also puff and pant uphill so need stops at uneven distances.

I love the interstitial, walking along the canal which is silting and slipping back to the countryside.

The final get up, get out and walk finds no argument here.

@livedtime my age helps me hit target for sleep:-) Never phone in bedroom here. I guess kindle/ipad reading in bed might not help

A few minutes @livedtime #tds150

1 min read

is sit still. How long can you allow yourself to do this simple thing today?

The simplest thing you can do | The Daily Stillness

Reading the post I am sitting on the couch.

I start by considering the black faced gull. On a rock surrounded by waves. Single purposed.

My legs are crossed and my foot gives involuntary bobs to my heart beat.

The traffic looms in and out of my hearing, later I notice the wind too.

I decide that moving eyes do not count and lift them from the screen. Yellow roses, a tangle of chargers, books.

My back is like a question mark, my glasses squint. The phone screen has gone black.

My wife is moving through the house. I am not sure if I want her to come in and ask me to go for the paper. This is pleasant and slightly unpleasant at the same time.

I breathe, think of making this post, wonder if I should have set a timer.

#tds142 What does it mean to you to lead a good life? @livedtime

2 min read

What does it mean to you to lead a good life? | The Daily Stillness Find a place where you can be alone with your thoughts, what is your answer to this question?

I feel quite uptight watching this video. The answers seem to be around what makes a good life for me. Perhaps it is generational, but I would associate a good life as one in which good was done (that good might just be not doing too much harm).

I was not particularly inspired by these folk. They have been lucky, like me, to have ended up living in the first world, with a tremendous amount of privilege. 

I am not claiming that I have done any better on living a good life and I am sure in many cases these folk have done great things for other folk, but they define a 'good life' in a way that surprised me. 

 I would have expected the odd mention of the Golden rule.

Do the words tell us anything, I pulled them out of the captions and made a wordle.


ccSubs: Download Subtitles & Closed Captions for Videos & Movies is goof for grabbing the subs from youtube.

Missing an opportunity @livedtime #tds139

1 min read

The train stops and the driver apologises for the delay. I glance through the dirty window at a fairly depressing scene outside. Not quite wasteland, marginal. A fenced compound bit of a track, broken concrete, some scrubby trees.

Today’s stillness:

Today find your digital chapel, your personal sacred space

Comes to mind, not much chance of that here.

I notice and name a few plants, the rose-bay-willowherb, gone to seed waving in the winter wind.

For a moment I focus on the branches of the scrubby willow. There is a quiet joy to the pattern of branches flowing like a delta, recalling other complexities and at the same time quietening things down. I am slumped and twisted in my seat, I start to breath.

A minute later I am reading my phone, a Medium post about Sweet Jane. The space has closed.

@livedtime #tds138 I like some permanence

2 min read

As I’ve got older I’ve come to dislike the passing of time and it markers more and more. The last one in a book of bus tickets, ordering another repeat prescription, tearing the daily newspaper voucher out.

Pleasurable sights, the first spring flower, a warm summer day, a hight hawk, are all tinged with the sadness of time.

A close friend died a while back, they knew what was coming, I saw no benefit or gain.

I think on my last day if I was aware of it and pain free enough to think, I would be paralysed by fear and indecision.

In the linked reading for today’s stillness the author writes:

we share the same faith and beliefs that we will be together again.

This to, my mind, somewhat invalidates the point she believes in something permanent, she is not so much feeling the fear but hoping, praying, her safety net is in place.

I’ve a dim recall of a story, perhaps a zen one, where the master says something about waking up every day feeling it could be his last. The pupil says something like, that is the same for us all. The master answers, “but how many feel it”. I suspect this might be the problem there are few of us who have the training, belief or strength of character to feel this is a positive way.

In short I long for permanence.

The image, of course, is of a temporary flux in the earth’s surface.

Lynne Jones on Twitter: "We're recording several of the sessions to go up on @Edutalkr later for listen again"