The future is not a result of choices among alternative paths offered by the present, but a place that is created — created first in the mind and will, created next in activity. The future is not some place we are going to, but one we are creating. ~ Deborah James
The word for desert is derived from the Greek word, eremes which, literally translated, means abandoned. The desert has often been described as a place where one meets life and death — face to face.
A place where one goes to face themselves. The desert provides a container in which one can eliminate distractions and experience deep encounters with the self. There is not much escape in the desert, though when I first made my frequent treks into the desert spaces, I felt as if I were escaping from many of life’s expectations. As I acclimated to the desert landscape, I found it was not an escape, but an invitation to dig deeper, to experience the intricate balance of life, death, and rebirth.
Every desert plant does the most intricate of dances to stay alive, to regenerate, to seed the earth and create the next generation of its species. Timing, luck, and chance weather play a part in the plant’s continued existence.
I once imagined I’d live life in the desert more as a contemplative than as a contributor. But contemplation, good for the mindful creation of dreams and goals, doesn’t have much of an action component. To bring those dreams to fruition — to allow the seeds to reach the earth, germinate and grow — requires workable steps of action.
I discovered that thinking and planning are only stage one. Stage two is active — scheduling, meeting deadlines, connecting with other people, visiting sources, taking workshops, collaborating on ideas.
Stage one is necessary. Stage two is vital in order to create rather than only imagine the future. Action in the present is critical for the success of any plan, no matter how small or grand.
Bo Mackison is a photographer and owner of Seeded Earth Studio LLC. She is exploring creative photography and emotion in a series featuring desert lines – a combination of visual lines and written lines.