Today’s Daily Stoic writing prompt: What philosophical lessons can I find in ordinary things?
The word “philosophy” means “the love of wisdom.” Wisdom is not the same as knowledge, which anyone can acquire. Wisdom is gained by experience, the processing and digesting of one’s progression through life. It’s often associated with age, but it does not have to be; I have met incredibly wise children (and foolish adults.) Transformative experiences can produce wisdom, but I have found that in my experience it’s the longer, deeper, and slower processes of passing through life that eventually lead to wisdom. An important part of that is being aware that that journey is ongoing, sometimes cycling and repeating, at other times foraging forward. That awareness of this progression and its observation at all stages–past, present, and forward-looking–to me is what brings meaning.
This is why stasis can be so damaging. I’ve mentioned before that, like a shark needing to keep swimming, I cannot abide ever ceasing to learn. This is why I revel in the rabbit holes, because they feed my soul. But so also does the field of flowers or the bleak, barren stand of leafless trees, so also does the pattern of a tiny patch of sun seen through the slat of a sunshade, or a single snowflake caught on a mitten. There is beauty in the wide as in the deep, but also in the small and delicate. There is wisdom in the dying and the emerging, the waxing and the waning, in the plenitude and the lack, the absence and the presence, the symphony and the silence–but I must see and hear, I must feel and ponder, and I must never close your eyes, ears, and mind to what is around me, even when it seems ever the same.
An incremental progress day. A chapter read in The Early Film Music of Dmitry Shostakovich. A re-read and some editing on a work in progress. Some stitchery while listening to music. Some more uploads to the Imaginary Letter of Misintent. Starting to make a little progress on some work activities. Tidied the work area.
I also have started a portfolio page for both embroidered works and for illumination. Right now it’s mostly the former, but I do plan to add the back catalogue to it slowly.