A Mandala Moment: My Given Circumstances

Posted on April 30, 2009

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What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from. 
— T. S. Eliot 

I am currently appearing in Personare-BearAmI Productions’ Now Birds Sing, from April 29 – May 3, 2009, at The Irving Greenberg Theatre Centre Studio. For more details, click here. We had our preview on Wednesday and it was well-received and the feedback very positive. 

Before the preview, in the early afternoon, we also had our dress rehearsal and, as a result, I had a couple of hours to kill. As a matter of instinct, I set out for a coffee on my own and, thanks to some fine afternoon weather, I found myself sitting on the patio of a nearby Bridgehead (fair trade and organic!). And as I am apt to do, my mind began to collate my given circumstances and I realized that I am living inside a moment of intersecting coincidence that would please any Hollywood producer, G. W. F. Hegel, and / or T.S. Eliot. 

I play a couple of different roles in the play, but primarily I play a lecturer examining and discussing the life and legacy of Rachel Carson, the founding figure of contemporary environmentalism. Coincidentally enough, I myself was once a lecturer (of philosophy) and, up until a year or two ago, had intended to make a career of it. As it happens, we are also performing the play in a theatre located a block or two from the place I was physically born and a block or two from the school where I like to think my personal identity was born. It was at this school that I first appeared in a play, first discovered my love of writing, and first entered puberty.

These coincidences of circumstance feels very much like a beginning, an ending, or both and it comes at a time of undetermined possibility in my life — the still moment of a pendulum’s swing that waits not for gravity’s decision but for my own. Here, in this place, this geography, if time really is a fourth, distinct, and physical dimension, three distinct points of my identity now exist along side each other : the father, the son, and the holy spirit. A circle has come full, in an absolute point of singularity. Like a mandala of sand, this coincidence of time, space, and history is a delight to behold.

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Posted in: My Life