Key (w)holes or Stairways to Heaven

In Bollingen, silence surrounds me almost audibly, and I live “in modest harmony with nature.” Thoughts rise to the surface which reach back centuries, and accordingly anticipate a remote future … my ancestors’ souls are sustained …. since I answer for them the questions that their lives once left behind. I carve out rough answers as best I can. … It is as if a silent, greater family, stretching down the centuries, were peopling the house. (MDR, P 237) Jung p 36

When we fight for the soul and its life, we receive as reward not fame, not wages, not friends but what is already in the soul, a freshness that no one can destroy. This soul truth, which young people pick up somewhere, sustains them. It assures the young man or woman that if not rich, he or she is still in touch with truth; that his inheritance comes not from his immediate parents but from his equals thousand of generations ago; that the door to the soul is unlocked; that he does not need to please the doorkeeper, but that the door in front of him is his, intended for him, and that the doorkeeper obeys when spoken to. Robert Bly, P 46

It is not easy to answer your question about the “Island of Peace.” I seem to have quite a number of them, a sort of peaceful archipelago. Some of the main islands are: my garden, the view of the distant mountains, my country place where I withdraw from the noise of the city, my library. Also small things like books, pictures, and stones. Jung p 37

A juxtaposition of perspectives in the form of a spiral staircase

When you walk out into Nature you have basically two way of creating dialogue. First you can simple turn off the beaten track and discover a Sacred Aisle or place that speaks to you across time, or you can get stuck in and actually create one. What you see in front of you is a spiral staircase made of earth, trees and stones that connects two terraces. Each of the terraces is quite different, one old and unchanged, the other, newer with recent plantings  of introduced trees and flowers. It is a very, very  long walk to get from one to the other, to the next higher level and, by the time you get there, you are getting weary and tend to have forgotten where you have come from and lost the impression of what you experienced. Hence, the spiral stairway makes it possible to compare and contrast the two levels very quickly, as you ascend,  jarring the senses and lifting you upward. The twisting movement causes you to adjust your stride, grasp, hold on, fear falling, to be drawn into the different something… a camellia horseshoe, guarded by two old orange trees… just time to make a wish that will sweep you off your feet.

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3 responses to “Key (w)holes or Stairways to Heaven

  1. Places that make you dream, either created or not, are to be shared, don’t you think? I am always on the look out for new ones, aren’t you?

  2. By the way, by making use of earth, stones and, in particular, trees for the stairway the result is that the form is a living thing that grows and changes incrementally. This means the experience of climbing it creates a constant sense of renewal…

  3. Wow, Ian, this is my first visit to your blog and it is beautiful here. What a lovely complement to your life story. I am simply present with you now, soaking up the beauty,energy and peace your words express to bless me.
    what a blessing it is to have a friend and ‘brother’ like you!
    Cyndie

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