Having lost a dear family member I have been contemplating life and when we are no longer here in the form we have been known as. I have an arising curiosity about where the evidence of our story is or where our stories reside or in what ways have we left our mark and to what extent? I find myself asking a number of questions. In what ways this has (or not) been witnessed or will (or not) be witnessed? Where is the evidence of ‘us’, our subjective human experience, our learnings, our feelings and the things we remember? Not just physically. How do we know for sure where we have been? Where is the evidence?
When we cut down a tree there are rings, markers of each year of its life. This is evidence of a particular trees story, of its experience in this world. These marks/ ringlets are also found in each tree branch, each with its individual story as it grows. Each leaf has its distinctive markings from its own developing life. It tells such an intricate a tale.
To those with a trained eye there are individual life maps and stories for each tree.
Where can we look to see, very specifically, a map of our lives though? Where is the evidence of our growth and what we were experiencing at that time? Where is the evidence regarding the factors that were affecting us as we developed?
Our blueprint, the DNA that we are born with, is full with genetic markers and ‘intention’ but this isn’t necessarily how we end up. Many external factors influence, interject, activate or alter our initial coding. Gut microbes affected by the food we eat, the amount of food we eat, the external viruses we contract, physical accidents, emotional trauma, stress, radiation, chemicals etc. Our DNA is the intention but as we grow there is so much potential for alteration. We become diverged from our initial blueprint. So how do we capture that unique experience both physically and existentially?
After our death a post mortem can go a long way to discovering how our physical body at the time of death looks. Informing of the factors that affected our physical life. But it can not tell the story of our dreams, our memories, hopes, heart intentions and actions nor can it tell us what shaped them.
Is there a traceable map of our being? If so to what depth is it traceable? Are we the only ones whom will ever know our perceptive experience of it and if so what does that mean?
On this page I hope to creatively explore any learnings or meaning making from this and creating artwork in response.
This isn’t a singular journey so I hope to reach out to many of you in this process and hear your perceptions or see any evidence that you feel pertinent. I’m sure there is plenty documented out there to find a pathway in to this exploration also.