What does a soul look like? Light - A Meditation (Part 2)
After writing last Sunday’s Meditation (I suggest reading it as well ::: What does a soul look like? Part 1) I kept asking that question again and again during this last week. What does a soul look like? I was thinking about what a soul is - the silky part, your spirit, your conscience, intuition, aura, energy, inner truth, inner voice, inner life, anima, ruach, etc and by implication a God or Gods of many names ~ my current favorite name is today, Mysterious Light.
In thinking and asking about this question, what happened in my creative life was rather wonderful. Instead of trying to think of descriptions of what a soul looks like strictly from my imagination, I would describe “real” observable things I was seeing directly in front of me. Assuming that the “this-ness” of a thing is observable if enough attention is paid. Somehow seeing the true qualities of the things around us, offers insight into their metaphysical realms as well. It turned into a practice of attention and describing the ordinary things around me in plain observation. And paradoxically, by doing this practice these more-than-human things revealed their poetry / souls / light / spirit / magic. (It reminds me of this conversation between Krista Tippet and Marie Howe)
Here’s an example I noticed one night while laying in bed with my eyes open…
What if a soul looks like a patch of light from a street lamp that slips in through the living room window, glides soundlessly down the hallway, reflecting off the mirror on our bedroom door, to illuminate a small geometric section of our dark, otherwise lightless bedroom wall.
The more of these small observations I did, the more I found myself drawn to the one’s that involved light. It’s fascinating why we as humans are drawn to various light sources around us. (Perhaps it’s because our primary source of light and life is the sun?) Our eyes are automatically drawn to lit windows, the moon, headlights in the distance, campfires, candles, and so on. (Are we so unlike a moth?) And not surprisingly all these light sources are also overlaid with ancient and modern associations of soul, spirit and presence. What do lights and souls share in common?
For this week’s meditation I made a short film simply called, Light. All the shots in the film were seen with my own eyes, over a single evening (Friday), mostly on my commute home from work and on a date with my wife, with no special effects added. I’ve done this commute many times, but it has never looked like this before. (Perhaps the power of observation has the power to change how the world looks? Or is it the other way around?) The trees in the film are only a half a block from my house, and I don’t think I can ever see them the same way after they offered a glimpse at their magic to me, real or imagined. (I say hello to them now when I walk by.) The world is illuminated in mysterious ways when we look deeply in. I feel grateful to see it for both its truth, its fiction and its magic.
Ask you watch the video and look towards the week ahead, ask yourself…
What animating qualities do lights and souls share?
What spirits and presences live in the lights and bodies around us?
What will you do with what you observe?
(ps this video is best watched off in the dark with the lights )
What if a soul looks like energy pulsating and surging out of the limbs of the trees outside your house
What if a soul looks like the eyes of the subway beaming into yours, slightly out of focus, yet piercing
What if a soul looks like the silhouette of the city, half asleep, crystallized by the surface of the river
Happy Sunday Friends :)