introducing a mini-series : "come alive"


"don't ask what the world needs.
ask what makes you come alive,
and go do it.
because what the world needs is people
who have come alive."

-howard thurman

this is a series that will highlight what makes people come alive:
what they're doing now, and what they want to do in the near future.
what a great way to start out summer officially, yes?
i do believe that this world needs people who are actually alive
and doing what they love, sharing their inspiration with those around them.

throughout the week, and possibly running into next week, i am thrilled
to be able to share with you some inspiration from other fantastically alive bloggers.
i made my own list, and will share that with you today.

also, i would love to hear what makes all of you come alive
so please email me your list lady.of.lorien9{at}gmail{dot}com
and i will highlight your lists next week.

as i put my own "come alive" list together i realized that feeling "alive"
for me is synonymous with feeling "awe." i've had a quote in my sidebar
for quite some time, and i just wanted to highlight it here:

"awe is the most reverent of feelings.
you feel, when you are in awe,
that you are human,
that your mind is dwarfed by what it confronts...
that you had best keep your mouth closed
and your mind open
while awaiting further disclosure."

-paul woodruff

outside. i feel most alive when i am outside. i want to study and remember every detail: which way the wind is blowing, how a bird tilts her head, how the clouds slide across the sky, and i especially love experiencing the ecosystem that is a tree. i constantly desire to be in a forest, at the sea, or at least sitting in my back yard. i watch storms as if a great deep, dark secret is about to be revealed: how the earth came to be.

stories. i feel a need to tell lots of stories. stories that have been told for thousands of years as well as stories that pop into my own head and heart. i feel alive when i can tell stories through photography, writing, face-to-face, and through music. i get giddy when i read or hear a story that takes over every living bit of my body.

music. i can't even tell you how much music makes me feel alive. i want to have all of you over on a sunday evening: i'd turn out the lights and leave just one candle burning so we could listen to violins, cellos, organs, and pianos. and we'd definitely listen to this genius. i love the way a violin can cry or carry my soul to a vast place of imagination and reality.

poetry. i must read poetry. i must read about mystery from women and men who possess(ed) a "negative capability." i must read poetry out loud because i believe that words are music and can drastically change us. i believe in the "poet physician"...that poetry can heal us on a physical level as well as on an emotional and spiritual level. i must live in poetry. i have to feel it, luxuriate in it. poetry makes me come alive because it delves into paradox: joy & deep sorrow. it pricks my heart. it breaks my heart. it inspires my heart. poetry is awe with every word i read or utter. now, i must write it more...i started last summer and left it for a time. now it is time to start again.

academia. i love it and i can hate it at times. but i always end up loving it. i leave for oxford in less than two weeks, and i've been reading every book i can get on politics, religion, and literature in england from 1540-1675. i read about donne, shakespeare, and milton and i simply want to melt in my chair with pure bliss. the ideas that were swimming around in such heads so long ago are leaving me utterly speechless...this is when i am alive, when i can contemplate life and death, joy and makes me feel connected to all humans everywhere at all times and to this earth and all that lives within. i must study the mysteries and the realities of this earth. my curiosity is always on.

silence. i often try to sit and do nothing and just let my mind wander as my eyes encounter visions of this tangible world. i listen to my breath and watch my entire body inhale and exhale. i try to capture silence in my writing and in my music as well--something that seemed impossible at first, but the more i study about silence the more i feel like it is indeed possible, though it will be a struggle in the first degree.

writing. when i write, when i really write, i write by hand. i experience a very "in-the-body" moment every time my pen first hits a blank page and doesn't stop for hours on end. i love watching my hand take over my mind and watch the ink form on the page as words spill out so wonderfully.

ceej. having ceej in my life has literally catapulted me into this living world. my heart finds calm every time he holds my hand or holds me entirely as we lay on the couch at the end of the day.

these are the things that make me come alive. and now i will go embrace them.


Carey Brown Strombotne said...

you've given us much to think about... i am in complete agreement with you about the world needing people who are alive and present. you see, it's so easy for some of us to forget that. thank you for promoting this idea, and as always, your photos are amazing!

nolitawanders said...

this is such a beautiful post, really amazing to read about what your passions are :) x

Tiffany Kadani said...

Gorgeous post. I remember one of the first posts I ever read on this blog was about the beauty and power of being a woman. I love how your mind revels in such glory.

Anonymous said...

absolutely beautiful post!

Kaylan said...

this is a BEAUTIFUL post. I love every word. So much resonates with my own heart and sense of what makes me come "alive". thank you.

Howie said...

Excellent pictures and great idea. I wish I have a alive list I can share. Lack of energy as of late, but your post will surely help generate some energy back to me . Thanks!

shipbuilding said...

Thanks for stopping by and for your sweet comment last week. I love the honesty of your list and very much look forward to this mini-series. Maybe it's about time I wrote my own list...

Kristina said...

such a wonderful post with the most prettiest pictures! loving to read more about you, your come alive list is so uplifting on this grey wednesday morning!!

Vintage Jane said...

What a beautiful, captivating post. You have made me think and I shall email you ...

amanda jane said...

what a beautiful post! so beautiful.

ilwen said...

Wonderful list. I agree with every single thing - except for I will replace ceej with my own prince of course :)
If I'm not too shy I might email you my own list as I have quite a lot of thoughts on this subject :)

Gabriela said...

Oh, dear... See, I never left you a comment but I've been following you. Thing is that I really love everything about your blog: the places you've been, how you write, your photos. I enjoy watching and reading you, I love the same things that you do. I wish I could express life as you do. You are the kind of person I would looove to have as friend.
Leave you greetings and love from faaar away (Argentina) and sorry for my English!!!

Unknown said...

o the transcendent music of arvo part!

Unknown said...

I think you're my soul sister. And I think we should be friends. :)

Shivani said...

This is absolutely the most beautiful about page I've ever read. and music and poetry and silence (but especially music) are definitely on my come alive lists.

Unknown said...

I love the way you can describe things, I really enjoy to be outside, the violin, music, stories.. but I think never could describe it the way you do it!!!! thanks for that!