It has been a while since I posted an article.
As the rhythm of my life after work unfolds, I am witnessing a very strange phenomenon. Time is both slowing down and speeding up. I find the long arcs of the days speeding by—while simultaneously feeling like things are in slow motion at the hour-by-hour level. The phenomenon sets in motion a strange relationship between my external and internal self. I am beginning to feel that this life now has a ending but I am not panicked. For the first time, I feel the speeding days are hurling me to the end-game. Yet when I sit quietly reading, drawing or pondering, time slows.
This slowing creates space in my mind to think about the state of world and how I am responding to the sadness and chaos engulfing our world. On some days I feel it is inevitable that the world as we know it will collapse. This belief baths me in grief and sadness—not for me but for those young people who will be inheriting a world that is polluted, heated, trashed and divided into civil-warring clans of greed and protection. The greed clans are so selfish and short-sided that they have jettisoned any semblance of empathy and concern that they might have learned from their parents. They care only for their narrow slice of self-indulgence and hoarding. The protection clans are feeling more and more impotent as their voices are snuffed out by the political process and its dominance by the greed clans.
In my slow moments I find sparks of optimism. I reflect on the good that so many people are doing—and the fighting that decent folks are waging against the greed clans. Yet I feel impotent too. Do I just retreat in my waning years and create my art work? Is that response nudging me towards being in the selfish clan? Is it selfish to use the gift of this slow-time for purely personal things? Does my decades of activism give me a pass? As the fast-time propels me to my last days, am I not entitled to spend these fast-days for personal things? Why am I sitting in this nexus of wanting to do something for others yet longing to be by myself and doing my work?
Aging and flowing with passing time is a gift not a curse. How I embrace this gift of slow-and-fast-time will determine if my work will help or hinder this phase of our planets history.