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“In individual dreams is the hope that one’s own life has not been lived for nothing.”
Barry Lopez, Arctic Dreams
About Writing, by Dami Roelse
I look out through the airplane window at the Canadian Rockies below, stretching out in a white mosaic of shapes.
It is in seeing a different landscape, meeting fellow travelers in a momentary intimacy - the unwanted brushing of skin against my arm of the big woman sitting next to me turning to thoughts of bodies compressed in freight cars - that I wonder about the reason for living.
Have I lived my life with a purpose?
Is it the purpose of biology, DNA, incessant force toward improvement and survival? Or is it the purpose of devoted stewardship, wrestled from walks in the wild and beautiful places, opening my heart toward beauty?
Or could it be the purpose of realizing oneness, found in an aging face across the isle, in a women’s mothering of her children in rapid foreign tongue? A purpose found in the force that drives us on the journey across lands and oceans, to meet people, and solve our separateness.
I was twenty when I set out on the journey to find out what my life was all about. I thought that a life purpose would dissolve the senseless ache lurking in the back of my mind. I thought that application of values taught over the ages would solve the puzzle. It didn’t.
It is in the enormity of the Canadian Rockies where my existence is dwarfed by the forces of nature, that the question about purpose dissolves. It is in the short lived moments of meeting a stranger that the quest for purpose drowns in the flow of engagement.
I write my story. A story that will somehow connect me with you the reader, your questions and our collective purpose. I tell my story so you can see what I see. So I can light up your eyes with images that connect with dreams in your mind and your body. I write so you too will step out there and go on your journey. Your journey intersects with mine. Your journey brings life to mine. It is only in journeying together that we will live our oneness.