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keskiviikko 7. helmikuuta 2018


 It doesn't unfortunately look like this outside at the moment here in Finland. It is snowing and minus grades, but I think it is a lot nicer to look at a picture taken in May and this refers to the content as well.

For quite some time I have been wondering and pondering with the question of what it is to lead myself with the help of intuition. How can I recognize it? How do I know that I am going to the right direction? Why do I find it to be so important to think about this? So far I have only learned what intuition is not. When you feel tension instead of relaxation – and intuition doesn’t definitely feel like 100 horses raising on their back feet inside you. And this is where I took one wrong turn at the end of 2013 in my own life even though I knew about the horses back then as well. It was a dream path for someone else.

I wonder if leading myself with the help of intuition is what I have been trying to do for some years already, going forward one step at a time without knowing the following step, letting it reveal itself instead? Perhaps the practice of choosing a word or concept to follow each year, starting 2015-2016 for my part, goes into this category and is actually at the heart of intuition. I have let the right word fall in my hands at the end of each year when summoning up the previous year. And that is then the direction I’ve followed throughout the year: “gentle living”, “enough” etc. Obviously these words also overlap. Nothing ends the 31st of December and starts the 1st of January except the calendar year. The word comes from my inner compass. I don’t know what kind of a scenery I am given, all the things outside of my control – an easy path to follow with flower meadows and cows on the pasture or a few hills or a mountain to climb. I’ve only tried to do my best. At least the word or concept makes it easier to stay on the path, direct my life. There are all sorts of lucrative and shiny signs along the path calling to different directions. There are also other kind of little paths, those don’t advertise themselves. They are silent and they call for silence. And I think that it is on those little paths you can develop your skills to use your inner compass. 

Every morning you wake up and start going. You pack in your backpack your little life philosophy: “about the humanity for the humanity”, perhaps a few balls of yarn and your favorite hook or Swedish grammar, something to read if it starts to rain, a lovely notebook where you can write up your thoughts and memories from the path. Perhaps you put some sparkle on your feet, and somehow they make your eyes sparkle a bit more too. These little tools I wrote about in the last post. You hopefully walk together with someone or more people during different times and decide who carries the lunch and who polishes the shoes.    

Would this already be enough to define the concept of leading and guiding yourself with intuition: word for the year, inner compass and silence? Well, I guess I can always rewrite this part when I know better.   

And the path must lead you somewhere doesn’t it, when you do your part and keep going. I must admit that the Swedish grammar is at the bottom of my backpack at the moment and I’ve been wondering should I take it out of the bag altogether. Or should it rather be something “in Swedish” instead of “Swedish”, the next step. Then I can go back to word “Swedish”. For a long time the grammar has been on the top and something else at the bottom. I have let the book gradually fall to the bottom. This “something else” is not as clear though as a Swedish grammar, and a few books in pedagogics etc. It seems to call me to write my own book, and there seems to be some sort of a weird dictionary as one part here as well, am I seeing it clearly. It is not the time to take it to the bookbinder yet – will it even ever be. Perhaps it is just a collection of random things, some of you cherish, some of you discard half a year later and just think that to what sort of rubbish you have dedicated so much of your time. It is never that though, it always builds something, all the wips and random notes on pieces of paper. Perhaps it becomes a masterpiece for yourself ten years later. 

And I am wondering should these books, grammar and this something, then be side by side at some point in the future, would the bag then be in balance and therefore easiest to carry. I think the backpack for each and one of us needs to nourish enough, otherwise we can’t walk on our paths. And I understand that it is a great privilege to be able to choose so much of the content in the bag. Therefore it need to be honored. Many of us have to take what is given in the bag, perhaps many of us don’t find it to be important. Many of us have their backpacks well organized, they just add a few books on the way, leave old ones behind and continue the path. Or is it rather so that the scenery is so uncertain for each and one of us nowadays that it calls for organizing it regularly. And perhaps others listened more carefully when these things were teached to you in your Scout patrol ;-). And me they probably lost when the words “sensible” and “organized” were taken up. Words which bring joy to many, but make some of us horrified and only kills the joy - of finding the structure yourself. Or perhaps some of your backpack content is in good order, next to the books of Marie Kondo and Swedish grammar, but then there is this big mess with all sorts of pink diamonds, crochet hooks, little stories and notes etc. Your scouter skills, academic degrees or Kondo-books won’t help you with this one, but perhaps metaphors can again be at least of some service and help you organize them, organize your thinking? It is also the sort of mess which demands you to follow it. It is a matter of your own well-being. As Elizabeth Gilbert has said, any unused creativity is not benign.

A new rug is well on its way. Really happy how it is turning out. Unfortunately I am running out of the blue yarn probably too early, have only one small ball of it left. Hope then to find more of the same shade in the local yarn shop. So we are living exciting times :-). And my apologies if this picture is disturbing ;-), someone has their head open as you see. Perhaps it is proper though, matches the text.  

I think most of us adults also carry a pack in front of us, as we often do in real life when travelling. I think this is the back containing the needs of others and the backpack in this text is our work, our vocation and nourishment in life. Unfortunately some of us have learned that the backpack is selfish and it is the front back you need to concentrate on. I guess we all know that if the bags are not in balance enough you eventually fall either way. And then it can be difficult to get up, perhaps you have to go slower after that falling down for the rest of your path or leave some of the content behind. And even though your pace is slower, you may become more productive. You leave the hustle and unnecessary speed behind since you can’t do that anymore. Falling isn't necessarily a bad thing. Perhaps sometimes you end up in a situation where you need to empty a lot of space in both bags - depending on how much is possible. I guess I have both fallen on my back and on my face during my adult life. And I think that it is the word “intuition” which has helped me to get up and back on my feet again, but it happens gradually. It seems to take time. This is also the point where “home”, “rug maker”, “from the inside out …” meet (texts which used to be here, but I took them for my own use), in the word intuition. It helps to get up and create a balance between the bags. It guides you to your inner child, to have a look at the content of the words like “childlike” and “beauty” and what those mean to you. It guides you to teatime quotes and books, which are a part of your self-reflection. You ask yourself, does this thought ring a bell inside and then you can leave it behind and try to accept your humanity. These words by others also give you a bit of boost and first and foremost, laughter and self-irony.  

Related to the bag in front, a wise old lady told me lately that the most important form of mother’s love is her love towards herself. That thought rang a bell inside in different ways. It is the example that counts most and perhaps it is quite the same with teacher’s work. When you are inspired about what you teach, you make the learning a lot easier for the students no matter how much you also try to bring new methods in your work and ways to look at the relationship between students and a teacher. We go after energy and passion and that is one way to motivate. I obviously have experience in teaching only one subject for adults and perhaps it is also the subject itself that causes to think this way. And there of course need to be a logic, structure and clarity behind what you teach and there is a structure you need to stay within coming from the outside. And it is very clear that we don’t have sparkle in our eyes or socks every day, the best energy. So we go and try again the following day.   

When you have got back on your feet and when you have been walking your path of life for quite a few years, you learn that any path you take, need to be something you want to commit to. The thing is also that when we are given too much freedom in life like I’ve had lately, it is difficult to find direction no matter how you try to listen to yourself, your intuition, and not the noise of the world. There are just too many options. Instead it is often better to make the most of what we have where we are - and when we have something restricting us. And when you come to this stage of the age as I have, you have already made so many new beginnings in your life that you really need to think through what you are ready for. And here below is a beautiful poem called Clearing by Martha Postlewaite. Here is also something that rings a bell.  

Do not try to save
the whole world
or do anything grandiose.
Instead, create
a clearing
in the dense forest
of your life
and wait there
until the song
that is your life
falls into your own cupped hands
and you recognize and greet it.
Only then will you know
how to give yourself
to this world
so worth of rescue.

Backpackers = just people walking on their life path, falling and getting up again  

And now that I read this text through before publishing, I notice that perhaps I know a bit more about intuition than I thought when starting to write this text. 


Ps. I can admit that I used to hate writing, it caused me anxiety. The anxiety came from the amount of work I saw ahead of me in order to make the writing “perfect”. During these last two years I have opened up to writing in a different way though, through the morning pages of Julia Cameron etc.  I can now see that some learning has occurred, perhaps I have found my way into word “enough” again.

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