Monday, 5 April 2010

Making vessels.

I was listening to a craft podcast earlier in the week about a metal craftsman who makes small metal vessels. At the moment he is making the biggest one he has ever created which will be about four feet when it is complete. People kept commenting that they really felt like they wanted to crawl inside these vessels.

These images in my brain have brought all kinds of connections together. When I was in the changing rooms at the pool last week, I watched some toddlers climbing into the lockers. Outside a crystal stockist in South Africa where two enormous amethyst geodes that one could sit inside.

There was some thing there about filling the empty space or perhaps finding a haven of safety and security.

It seems such a strong part of our tradition that we must not have any empty space. To be busy and filling all the spaces is valued far above sitting being part of the world with no need to fill or complete anything. Open spaces in conversation can leave people feeling awkward and uncomfortable. We are just not shown how to let space be.

When we moved to this country, we wanted to change our lifestyle from being constantly busy, to one of having more space to explore the immediate world around us when we chose to. It is a joy to be without the pressures of big city life, learning at the same time to do things differently.

It has not been easy and it is still a work in progress. It has meant changing our value system and understanding what is truly important in life, our family and friends and living a slower life. It is understanding where happiness really comes from and having one's needs met not necessarily one's wants.

It has been a letting go of all the competing and pressures to keep up with what society expects. We have had to hammer this out of our psyches like the metal smith hammers the metal to form his empty vessel. Slowly, we are forming our own new vessels with emptiness. We are moulding our metal to ring with the sounds that we want to be now. It is a very magical process.

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