Last night was told that the culture here is very contextual. In stark contrast, in particular, to the cultures of the United States and Canada. Nothing here has a meaning all by itself. Every action is sewn with the wider moment, and the size of that, the experience, presumably where nothing just is, is something most don’t expect to ever be translatable to people from North America.
It was some hours after arriving at the lodge, with a fellow, from Canada, who was riding his bike across the country, that this was discussed. He wondered what the opposite word would be to describe a culture that was not contextual.
At the tip of the tongue the word linear danced about but stayed there.
Coming down through the endless woods earlier in the evening, to this lake which, at first glance, was mistaken for the sea, it was misty, cool, pleasant. Shortly after the bus emptied, the streets of the town that caters to the only notable attraction (in terms of tourist flows) in this part of the country, were deserted.
Other foreigners had been very rare, the bus from the town with the most beautiful name, had precisely one. English was rarely posted and spoken in pieces if at all. The silence of the trees, and the crickets, and the mist, pouring over the reefs of green that crown this dead volcano flowed between, soothing, drowning, great rusty clunky mounds of words that lie, longing to tell a worthy story.
The fourth residence of the journey would be the first place where there would be time for things to take time.
The streets are empty but the town is not asleep. The old buildings, telling the story of water and time seem somehow how they ought to.
When Aaron referred to the observation of how contextual meaning was in this culture, it sparked with something surprising that, over the past few days, had begun to take shape.
How peaceful the people were.
In Macleod Ganj, a city for Tibetan refugees in Northern India, there was an aura of peace, despite and through the crunch of honking cars, that was like air heavy with water.
Here it is different, almost latent. Maybe something you go in and out of.
Is there a connection between the invisible complexity of the people here and the strange version of serenity they don’t radiate but, in their ways provide evidence of?
For years, standing perpendicular to society, the same message is here but it isn’t something linear.
It can’t just be said, written. The light, the sound, the texture, the trajectory of preceding moments, and their music, have always been the gates governing a flow the mind is just another filter for.
The background we don’t realize we are always hearing, mentioned previously elsewhere, there are two of them. This journey, among other things, is an attempt to balance their proportions, to listen to where they meet.
What comes after is something that can’t be heard just anywhere.
One of the paradoxes of this project is that it is attempting to cure society of it’s frantic pace, in which there are no gaps wide enough for the project itself to make sense.
Discussing pieces of the plan with some people before coming, coming here didn’t seem to make sense, beyond, even, the things I did not tell them. Why here? On the surface there were no good reasons. It was just a feeling, one that has become familiar.
The experiment of this life, was to follow that feeling.
There was an intention set, long ago, from a place in time and space that cannot be returned to. To that intention, the feeling, often perpendicular to reason, has always mysteriously, wisely, held true.