Art of “Letting Go”
"Relax, relax. Let go the tense hold of your arms that is wearing out your vitality. You will get rest by doing this. Sleepless people will fall asleep. Stop holding yourself in a knot and relax. Hold up the chest, breathe slowly and deeply through the nose, and relax the extremities. (Make yourself) a being whose body is the exponent of the soul responsive to every command of the spirit."
-Edmund Russell, 1896.
(Etiquette rules for absolutely every victorian concern)
The photo above of Edmund Warren Russell is a cabinet card found on eBay, I didn't see the auction until the day after it ended. I would easily have paid 10 times the closing price. At first, I obsessed over this. Maybe the seller would send me a scan, just so I can see this facial hair better? Maybe the buyer is also researching Edmund Russell, maybe we could share some information? Or better yet, maybe I should stop acting like a fixated 4-year-old, relax, refocus on what matters, appreciate the lesson, appreciate the obscure scan version with the watermark, and get back to writing.
The big lesson is the reminder material possessions do not make us happy, ultimately what matters is compassion for all beings and freedom from desire (yes, Edmund Russell has me quoting The Bhagavad Gītā). The small lesson is to get back to writing instead of Internet distractions.
Last night: Flying through the sky, heading home to visit my dad. I fell, landed on a fence. Rolled to the ground, brushed myself off. Then I was trapped in some rich family's yard, I just wanted to go home. Their living room ceiling was vaulted like a church cathedral and the wood was inlaid with cinnamon. This is all very significant, or very stupid. The ceiling smelled like home, I started to fly toward it but then I remembered no one else knew I could fly. I walked out of the garage, got trapped in small talk. And small life. (le sigh...) I got to fly and smell cinnamon, it's no exotic dance party with Edmund Russell, but my dream life is still delicious.
Soundtrack: Jesca Hoop "When I'm Asleep"