For the last few days I have been working south of the river in London, returning north of the Thames to catch a train home. The journey is typically about 35 minutes on a bus.
On the return journey in the evening, twice I have been inspired to get off the bus and walk, because the bus has been stationary for some time; gridlocked. I have walked the bus route passing buses. Buses going to my destination. Four yesterday. Walking trumps bus.
My train has been delayed travelling home on one day. Over an hour’s delay. So much so, that I possibly could have ridden a bike home faster.
Now I am on a train and, whilst I have a seat, hundreds are standing. Standing still, to travel tens of miles towards their homes. Standing and yet moving at maybe 90mph.
It seems in our ‘modern’, ‘advanced’ world that much is turning upside down. I wonder what else will do so over the next decade? Not just travel… but what we do, who we care for, what we pay attention to, who we communicate with and how, what we appreciate, what society is, what community is, what rewards us, where we find joy, where we find peace…
Maybe a new set of top trump cards is called for?
What is it?
Like so many of life’s most important treasures, it seems almost intangible, hard to put your finger on, illusively difficult to describe. floating in the ether. Yet of immeasuable significance to us.
For when it is absent, all seems lost. Its magnitude then, monumental. Its impact, seismic.
An important element seems to be a goal. An intent. An objective. And then there needs to be choice. A sense that we can see alternatives. Pathways. When there are none, hope is lost. A will to get there seems to be the final ingredient. A desire to make the choice and a drive to work towards the aim, however difficult. We all lose sight of one of these from time to time – goal, alternatives, will. Perhaps hope is lost when they all leave us?
Why are the most important things in our human lives so hard to quantify, to describe, to grasp? Hope, belonging, love, freedom, will, happiness…
If there was a doorway. And through that doorway was a world where something you desire, was true. Would you step through?
What if you knew you would never be able to come back? There was a risk you would lose some things you currently have. A chance they would be absent, or different, on the other side. There would be many unknowns, through the door.
But the promise of something you long for too. A deep longing.
Would you step through the door? Would you take the risk? The chance to gain a deep desire, but with the risk of losing some things you value on this side? Would you take a chance? Would the excitement of the possibility draw you in? Would the call of the longing be too great to resist? Or would the potential loss, the fear of the unknown keep you this side?
The red pill or the blue pill?
A fabricated reality or the reality of truth?
Which is which side?
Risk or safety? Unknown or known? Heart or head?
Would you step through?