The Void

Like everyone else with an internet connection, I get overwhelmed by the amount of content on the web. So much of it is so good.

This is (part of) the reason I have mostly stopped blogging. I don’t want to add more noise to the noise. Maybe it’s a good reason, maybe it’s not. But it’s my reason.

Sometimes when I’m sitting in my peaceful living room, this patch of earth turned away from the sun and towards the all-encompassing darkness, I feel the void with intense precision, the hole I have tried over the years to fill with alcohol/food/social media/the internet/shopping/etc. If I don’t make any immediate moves to stuff something into it when it opens, I fall into the hole. I am curled up inside of myself, and it gets snug in there. I want out. I want to see more, do more, be more.

When you’re doing anything challenging, whether it’s running up a hill or launching a business or facing a void, the real rewards manifest when it starts getting hard and you keep going anyways.

If I don’t reach for things to fill the void, I am left with it, inside of it, exploring it. Dwelling in its discomfort. This tends to be a place where creativity happens. Creating pulls me out of this hole and back into universal oneness. Maybe it’s the reaching down into source that springs me out of it. Maybe it’s the widening of perspective that makes it cease to exist.

I think most people alive on earth today have this void, this vacuum created just by living. They drink and trip and work and eat and travel their way through it. But I’m not thinking today about all the ways we numb it and why. Instead I’m wondering about the ways we learn from the void. How do we dig deeper into that hole and come up with something beautiful and sparkling? How do we capture light and energy from the depths of the darkness? We have diamonds and oil, concrete metaphors from Mother Earth to demonstrate this potential. What can we harness from within?

Though I forget what it feels like to be bored, I know that life is boring without art. For me, the void is a catalyst for art, though I did not understand this until after I had a child. She gave me motivation to be my truest, highest self.

This doesn’t mean I never reach for second and third helpings of coffee or wine or chocolate, or yet another scroll through Facebook to procrastinate; but I am also able to recognize when I can no longer stand it, when further distraction will only lead to more pain, so I choose tea, my least distracting beverage, and I face the blank blinking page.

In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer. – Albert Camus

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