At lunchtime a tree falls in a forest and the distant listener has heard its sound. And in this quiet half hour one’s mind moves with the living forest and a stressful life is for a short time made easier. Beyond one’s senses there exists thisMoreAt lunchtime a tree falls in a forest and the distant listener has heard its sound. And in this quiet half hour one’s mind moves with the living forest and a stressful life is for a short time made easier. Beyond one’s senses there exists this distant forest. By thinking about it during lunchtime the forest becomes a necessary thing. A transcendent parable by the author of Swaghead and I Draw Tight My Life.Opening extractDisentangling this pressuring net, or what to quietly do at lunchtimeIt is lunchtime.
Somewhere a quiet corner is waiting to be found. It was quiet there yesterday.In this quiet corner there conjures an imagined forest world of magnetic insects, running streams, forest fantasias, winds tolling leaves until they talk, the restless undergrowth, birds- the forest fragrance, the feel of damp on naked skin. In a quiet half hour away from city and country work, how can one imagine the forest’s distant din?
If one can safely annihilate everything for the call of nature, its forests which mimic the self, then one can be what the forest is for a short while. In this half hour perhaps an electronic device could be used to augment the imagination. This might be the earth-heaven a quiet one needs. Outside one’s eye which sees the universe’s art, what else is there?
Here is a chance for nature to seed one’s daily life, the lunch-timer imagining it, and through it joust with life’s associated pressures.In this half hour the spirit of childhood returns. Here is wonder without judgment, interpretation, background knowledge, analysis- just a simple awe when immersed in beautiful surrounds. Here one tries to transcend ordinary life and join with nature in a simple childlike way, and sit for the half hour under the sky, trying to capture the feeling while silence is feeding the moments.
Having got away from urban din and stresses, from drought and stresses, the worker, the farmer, are human again, and they wait, and they are calm, and the half hour feels kind of enchanting. They see something in nature that is their nature, natural stress, the driver of work and progress, but it is flux and with hidden processes akin to the forest, by day and by night. When one does this, one does all, and for this short time it is right.Malifluent noise interferes with natural sounds. To temporarily get away from it one needs to find a space in the imagined forest to find rest in, for the mind to become still.
When one has got away from the disquiet, the distractions, and struggles there comes a wish for the forest to expand, and bring with it nature’s energies.When quiet fills this time, the forest will engage, but in a different way to when the forest might test one’s endurance. Instead one becomes as though a trill in the music of the forest, and as such joins in the melody, and absorbing the forest’s ecology, an act as vital as eating and sleeping.
This half hour away from family, friends, daily routines, work and play brings in nature to disorientate one’s comfortable patterns.One might feel youthful, and vital and fully engaged in this way of life. But inside, during this half hour, one packages this identity and hands it over to nature. In these moments, by returning to nature, the source of its presence is revisited.
A natural essence is transformed and nature abides in it. There is nothing to ask of nature, except to act in its stirring- to create an interior and make it a part of a normal life.