Saturday, January 31, 2009

Silence Is Golden

Scarf and Coat
Originally uploaded by ojodorado

Okay, so now I'm not only Flickrd but Facebooked. This could turn into a full time job. I am so busy keeping up with my internet friends and contacts that I don't have time to discuss the really important things in life here on my the definite change in the air since Obama has taken office, and how much I am enjoying the sunny streets of San Francisco,

There was a beautiful instant right after the Obama election, an instant that lasted for maybe a day or so, when everybody, even a large number of people who had not voted for Obama, just shut up and acknowledged that importance of the moment. One friend told me of how the French leftist newspaper Liberation kind of wanted to criticize Obama because he wasn't left enough, but couldn't bring themselves to because the mere fact that he was black (or bi-racial) was a major shift in this country, and the world. Even among the Republicans, it seemed that many people who didn't agree with Obama's politics still felt compelled to shut up for at least a little while.

These moments that force everyone to shut their mouths for an instant are a good thing. In that brief, fleeting silence, when we feel compelled to let go of our 'usual' discourse and the attachment to that discourse, great transformation can occur.

So it was nice while it lasted. Now many folks are once again taking up their 'positions' behind well-worn fences of discourse and idealogy. (I include the left, the right, and myself in this.)

I think one of the reasons I spent so many of these last months doing nothing but photography was out of this need for silence, and stopping. There is nothing like a photograph to allow you to stop the world, and really look at it.

But now, it seems my own addiction to words is returning. Which is fine, because I can at times be relatively good at this addiction.

It is a joy to have my friends from Peru and Mexico and Argentina and Spain and the U.S. all on the same Facebook page, and to be able to throw our words (and photos) back and forth. Everybody is asking me when I am going to return to their particular city. It is nice to be loved in different corners of the world. I wish I could be physically present with all my friends at the same time. But Facebook is the next best thing.

Now, for at least a little while, I'll shut up, and fall into that great transformative silence.

No comments: