Wednesday, July 10, 2013

State of flow

photo of Allium (prairie onion) in blossom
© harrington
Reader, meet Allium! I think this is the prairie onion version. I haven't yet noted any this year but that probably doesn't mean anything except I haven't been near wherever I took this last year. As we settle into Summer, do you find yourself experiencing it as a series of days, like a calendar in which each day and week and month is a discrete object, separate from all the others? Do you, instead, ever get a sense of seasonal flow with time flowing like a river on which you're flowing endlessly and irreversibly downstream? I'm becoming more and more interested in the difference between focusing on processes rather than products. Plants can be seen as leaves, stems, flowers, roots or as a process that converts sunlight and rain and soil into stored energy. When I look out onto a field of grasses and wildflowers, I end up with a very different emotional response when I sense a process rather than products. I can imagine myself as part of the process (converting plants, and, indirectly, sunlight into me) much more readily and comfortably than I can sense myself as one of the parts (I'm not a plant and have no stems or leaves or flowers, although I am growing roots). For a slightly different perspective from a place long ago, try these lyrics from Dylan's "watching the River Flow."
People disagreeing everywhere you look
Makes you wanna stop and read a book
Why only yesterday I saw somebody on the street
That was really shook
But this ol’ river keeps on rollin’, though
No matter what gets in the way and which way the wind does blow
And as long as it does I’ll just sit here
And watch the river flow
I'm leaning toward the idea that this may be a fitting way to approach the seasons, life and today's world. What's your take on process versus products? Remember, you can only eat or drink so much, and drive one vehicle at a time, and no one that I know of has ever come back to confirm that "he who dies with the most toys wins" and I've always wondered: wins what? Thanks for listening. Come again when you can. Rants, raves and reflections served daily.