Sometimes the daily grind can be overwhelming. Work, family, friends, bills, kids, and more can all be a joy at times and a curse at others. While we’re all flying through space on this spinning top we call home, sometimes it can feel great just to stop everything and be still.
To everyone the act of being still can mean many things. To some it is a form of release, allowing the stresses of the world flow out of their bodies. For others stillness can evoke feelings of anxiety, the calm before the storm as it were, the moment where everything just seems too good to be true. Even in nature stillness can have many meanings. Those early moments at dawn when a lake is perfectly still, just existing waiting for the world to begin again and reflect itself in its surface, the stillness of the night before still echoing across the glassy surface in the form of the mists. Then there are the predator and prey. The predator stalks its prey until it finds the perfect position to mount its attack, holding everything in and becoming a rock, immovable yet capable of motion. The waiting, the thinking, becoming so still with focus that the rest of the world falls away. While the predator waits, the prey becomes still as well, not with calm or focus, but with fear. Knowing there is danger around and that the slightest movement will set in motion a cascade of events that could be the end of its existence.
The stillness of the world cannot exist without the movement. The time after the world has stopped. The first fish leaping from the water to eat an insect, causing the first waves to break the surface, waves that will continue to move until the next morning when the cycle begins again. The moment where the stillness has fulfilled its purpose and the time to act is present, releasing all the energy locked within in one swift and sudden movement. When the fear changes from the overwhelming power to be still, to the realization that by remaining still will be the end, and movement is what is necessary to survive.
Looking at this photo of IAM: Radical Kiba, you can see the stillness in her. Lost within herself she is looking out on the world. There’s no way to know how she is feeling, but you can feel the stillness.
What is stillness to you? Is it the calm of the water at dawn, the anticipation of the predator waiting to strike, or is it the fear of the prey? Or is it something else, something that only you can feel?