Antidote to oblivion

Antidote to oblivion

10 July 2015

With each departure, you return a little. This is the antidote: distance, nostalgia. You can’t forget, because you miss it too much.

The soul of an exile is always being ahead of yourself, far and away, towards. Never quite settled, never entirely belonging somewhere. You ‘branch out’, evade the quotidian. You’re half here, half there – like the clouds that are constantly on the move despite their apparent static position.

While you stay put, part of you is away. Like tango – calm waters at the surface, deep movements underneath; passion controlled. And then you travel – and your soul comes to life again. The wanderer – never entirely here or there. Always hungry for open horizons. Never quite still. Always hunting for the elusive beyond. Always following a deep call, only meant to be heard by him – the call of the horizon, the elsewhere. The look of nostalgia on his face – nostalgia for the future, as much as for paces passed by. Nostalgia in reverse.

He always comes alive on the move. Like the soul of the clouds.

The urge to leave is not an urge to abandon this here and now, but an urge to follow the elsewhere – further and further away, and beyond.

Just like tango – an understated passion. A fugue.

He comes to live on the highway. In search for an elusive tomorrow, elsewhere, he lives in a fleeting time rather than space. Becoming thinner and thinner – elusive self, opening up to a perpetual elsewhere – another place, another time, another. Humility – like a prayer.

He likes the anonymity of this otherness, and the strangeness of elsewhere. Detachment. Just praising the beauty of elsewhere as elsewhere – not a particular place, in famous surroundings. Just a straightforward openness – towards elsewhere. Whatever and wherever that might lead. Like the honesty of a blank page, elsewhere brings with it the sheer joy of an endless possibility of new landscapes, without the tyranny of any ‘points of attraction’.

The wanderer feeds on this otherness, it makes him free and tranquil – and alive. He grows into otherness. Not his ‘self’, just his openness. Freedom, peace, prayer. The spirit of elsewhere is sheer beauty without form or shape. The spirit of beauty is best captured elsewhere – always from a distance, in total freedom from attachments to self and any familiar places. Controlled passion is liberating. There is beauty in the anonymity of each leaf, lost in a deep forest, elsewhere.

The call of elsewhere is the voice of life.

3 thoughts on “Antidote to oblivion”

  1. As I read this, my eyes kept wandering to the photo alongside, looking down on mountains from a great height. Two kinds of distance.

    It’s tempting, when looking at some spectacular view in the distance, to want to get closer. But it’s a misconception that things are best viewed, best experienced, from close up.

    Distance is as much part of the experience as the thing seen. It’s from this perspective that the view is great. To get closer would be to lose that.

    1. Indeed! The beauty of that experience is in the “elsewhere”, the not-quite-there-yet. And it is this, which gives it an almost spiritual quality. It makes it similar to a quest – where just being on a path fills us with some form of understanding. Like in Heidegger, it is the openness that brings ‘being’ (or meaning) closer. Not a ‘finding’ or anything else. There is no end to the journey. Just like what happens in ‘the Zone’ depends on us, the ones who tread there carefully, in the sense that things come to life when we walk in – or open up to them. We should perhaps do that more often – get lost in contemplation, rather than trying to ‘find’ something, at all cost. The Stalker, in fact, warns us against too diligent an endeavour of digging out for the truth; and he prays for his followers, that they be able to believe, instead, and have a laugh at their passions.
      I wonder how time comes into play in all this.

      1. While reading this I couldn’t help but think of the idea of distance, and what it does for us. Humans are so afraid to be alone, but why? why can’t we find happiness in being by ourselves? There is a great difference between being alone, and lonely. Distance is what we need to help us, through whatever life may bring. Through the good and the bad. Distance humbles us, and keeps us wanting more. Whether it’s distance between family, the girl you love, or poor friendships. Without distance you will never know how much you love what you had and will do anything to keep it that way, or you will see how much better off you can be without certain things holding you back. The way I see it, distance is what we need to open our eyes. Whether it’s something we love or something we hate, if we spend time away from it we will see things more clearly. People are so afraid of being lonely, but don’t realize they can be alone and not lonely. We must enjoy our own company and really think about life sometimes.

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