Dear Jade Readers,
Thank you for returning to read here. Yes, I have been away from writing posts regularly for some considerable time. There has been a reason and it might well be to do with wishing for a fig in winter, so to speak. Let my intention be to open my hands and write my thoughts. It is about love basically.
Bows, Mugo Epictetus — a proponent of the wonderful practice of self-scrutiny applied with kindness — proceeds to offer a meditation on loosening the grip of grief in parting permanently from someone we have loved:
When you are delighted with anything, be delighted as with a thing which is not one of those which cannot be taken away, but as something of such a kind, as an earthen pot is, or a glass cup, that, when it has been broken, you may remember what it was and may not be troubled… What you love is nothing of your own: it has been given to you for the present, not that it should not be taken from you, nor has it been given to you for all time, but as a fig is given to you or a bunch of grapes at the appointed season of the year. But if you wish for these things in winter, you are a fool. So if you wish for your son or friend when it is not allowed to you, you must know that you are wishing for a fig in winter.
Here is the River Bela shortly joined by the River Kent which empty into Morecambe Bay. The heavy rain has been a blessing, a joy to watch the fields grow green again. Ever renewing, we humans too. Gratitude is the response.
How do you get the unrelenting sense of purpose that sustains, say, one of the world’s greatest ultra-marathoners? Not the way you might think: Avoiding introspection seems to be key. Hutchinson, a creditable runner himself (though his career never came close to matching Jurek’s), spends long passages puzzling over the mysteries of his own peak performances and dissecting his failures. Jurek, meanwhile, gives the impression that doubting his commitment hardly ever even occurred to him—until he hit the Appalachian Trail.