I write, not to show that I am not in a dream. I’ve never written in a dream; I wonder if Descartes did. I write, not to focus on the nature of my sensory experience – the black of the ink, the cream of the paper, the firmness of the pen held in the triangle of fingers and thumb – as Merleau-Ponty did.
No, I write to help me be Now – to help me be in this moment; to help me be present. No doubt, my writing in this moment affirms my existence – not in my head, as Descartes’ philosophy led us to privilege, but much more like Merleau-Ponty who set us back on the track of our senses – our bodily, creaturely way of being in the world. But this exercise of writing is not a philosophical enterprise.
No, it is my passport to the Present. Now, right here, I am not caught in any life situation, neither past nor future. In this Now I have returned to life, my life.
The misty grey clouds are edging their way to shore so the pebbles, the notebook and I may get a sprinkling. No matter. The dappled pebbles curve the bay in ridges – a good place to sit and gaze out across the silvery green water merging into a blue-grey horizon, buffering a milky white sky. Then the sun comes out and paints a wedge of sea golden, alive, dancing – briefly. The waves sometimes gently foam the pebbles, jostling their noise in retreat. Sometimes they curl and sonorously pound the stones and return and ripple, tired from their exertions. The gulls work energetically to reach the height and then swirl in circles and glide the air. Some bob the waves, undulating, resting, carried along. And the air smells salty and sea-weed, with a hint of cold.
In this moment, Now, my life is filled with serenity.
[Thanks to Ali for introducing me to The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle]