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In the finalizing moments of writing this poem I came across the following lines from ‘anam cara’ by John O’Donohue:

All your life, your mind lives within the darkness of your body. Every thought that you have is a flint moment, a spark of light from your inner darkness. The miracle of thought is its presence in the night side of your soul; the brilliance of thought is born in darkness.

And then, not much later, I came across these lines:

In a culture preoccupied with fixities and definites and correspondingly impatient of mystery, it is difficult to step out from the transparency of false light into the more candlelight world of the soul. Perhaps, the light of the soul is like Rembrandt light. That tawny, gold light for which Rembrandt’s work is known. (…) Such a golden earth-light is the natural sister of shadow and the cradle of illumination.

And then I’ll just add this beautiful sequence from the awe-inspiring and magnificent Terrence Malick movie ‘The Tree of Life’ (there is a sorter HD version of this sequence available on YT as well). A film, a director - in great contrast to our culture‘s impatience - completely patient for mystery to show itself. And it does.

And so all the lights and all the darknesses are, for now, neatly tied up again.

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A new Beatles song. I don’t really know why, but it really touches me. From ‘then’, listening over and over again to that first Beatles cassette (from which my mom ‘accidentally’ erased ‘Please Mr. Postman’ because my brother and I were fighting over what song to play next all the time) to now, ‘now and then,’ I guess these Beatles have been with me for a while.

Below, the song (and the videoclip), the story and the origin.

The song

The videoclip

The story

The origin

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Light is the exception

We are all ignorant three year olds, in a sense.

We are enveloped by darkness, but for this tiny light that shines into it.

Light is the exception

Darkness the rule.

While we are given a spark, it only carries so far.

However, it’s easy to get lost in the light,

believing there to be no darkness.

Remember this

Remember the darkness

Be happy with the light.

It might be a brighter flame now than before.

All those years,

all that experience,

adding light

(if we’ve been paying attention).

But remember the darkness.

It will always be endless,

however bright your flickering flame.

Remember the darkness

especially when approaching others.

Look from the dark

at their light.

Seeing this lonely flame

brazenly opposing eternal nothingness,

a deep compassion may take hold.

A flame approaching a fellow flame

alone in the night.

Start there

and make the fire glow brighter;

be a flint to their spark

and their spark will warm yours.

In this way,

we help grow the light,

our light.

Let’s not talk too much

about the surrounding darkness.

Though knowing of it is essential,

that is also enough.

So I guess what I’m saying is:

See from the darkness

Start from the light

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