Noticing Beauty – Is It a Taught, Imbued, and Educated Love?

Posted: December 20, 2018 in author, book; books, editor, epistolary, Fiction, literature, meaning, Musings, Novel, opinion, philosophy, relationships, writing

Wise Friend,

Parents need to show children what is beautiful around them, while very young.

Sensitive Friend,

What happened?DXTE34-1024x682

Wise Friend

I’ve become more and more aware of walking by beautiful objects, be it art, flora, buildings and not noticing them. Always focused on the final destination. I remember how families in the neighbourhood went camping, hiking. Not us. We had extraordinary parents. They were not nature people. Their focus was on art, books, and literature.

Sensitive Friend,

That focus (art, literature, music) is about beauty.

Wise Friend,

Yes, but it was not about the beauty in nature. I love what they offered us and how much all that has enriched our lives forever. However, we missed on learning how to look around. It’s not a reproach about them, it’s an observation. Each family with its own quirks.

Sensitive Friend,

What brought these thoughts to mind?

Wise Friend,

Last night I was walking along my street. For some reason, I was slow and looked around at flower beds, at buildings, their hedges and gates. I looked at views between buildings of valleys and mountains. I noticed details I missed for months. I said to myself: “Those first seven years at home!”

When I was an adolescent, and during my university years I went frequently hiking. Long gruelling hikes. I used to be very effective in reaching the destination of the day. The mountains were steep and impressive.

I didn’t know I didn’t see them. I loved hiking, though. During one such hike, a close friend told me, quite annoyed, we have to stop and look around and we can’t just push ourselves to reach the final target. I didn’t like what he told me. I stopped in my tracks to accommodate him. I forced myself to look at nature. I loved it, but my body wanted to start moving. I decided on the spot to let my friend decide the pace.

In time, I admitted I lived in an incredibly beautiful country, and I never saw it, although I hiked all around. I didn’t know how to see. Friends would talk about a place or another, describing them, describing their magnificence and I remembered nothing. I knew something was strange, but I didn’t know what.

Sensitive Friend,

The capacity to identify and discern subtleties requires love, passion and persistence.
This is true of any type of art and true for hiking or mere walking as well. A taught, imbued, and educated love.

Wise Friend,

I started to see (notice the surroundings) only in my twenties. What was the trigger? Maybe, because I lived for a few years in a place quite arid and anything green was a shock to my senses.

Later I moved to a city as green as one can imagine and want. Initially, it amazed me. I never got tired of its beauty.

I remember a street, named Ocean Avenue. Arriving from that arid place, somebody took us to Ocean Ave. The trees took my breath away. They had tall and wide trunks with so many ridges, so rich colours and leaves I could not take my eyes away from them. I went back many times. Then I lost touch with Ocean Ave. Years later, I went there in search of the same feeling of awe. The trees were not so thick any longer. They were still stunning, but they seemed to have shrunk. I was wondering if I was on the same street. And suddenly, I understood that initially, after the young trees in the previous place with not enough water, these trees seemed so full and big. With time, living in this lush green city, I got spoiled with lush trees so when I went back, the trees “shrunk.”

Sensitive Friend,

I went once to visit Australia and friends drove to show me the Blue Mountains. I was beyond disappointed. After the New Zealand mountains or the European Alps! Were these people serious to call them mountains?

I turned my back, and I didn’t return for years during my frequent visits. Five years later, I was curious again, and I went to see the Blue Mountains by myself. I strolled, was quiet, and discovered a splendour I didn’t know it was there. During that walk, I learned how to notice the flowers whose exquisiteness is so subtle, and you better stop to look attentively at details and thus learn to see. Then your soul changes. I was sitting here, and I realised that the first time, I walked by the music and lyrics.

Wise Friend,

That what I meant.

 

(photo http://www.sydneywildernesstours.com.au)

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