Through a Jungian Lens

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Snow Storm in May

with 6 comments

Well, I woke up to a cool, cloudy and windy morning as I had expected, but it didn’t take long for an unexpected snow storm to settle in.  I took this photo just after 10:00 am and now at 4:00 pm, it is still snowing and blowing.  Again, quite a contrast to the past few days.

Storms seem to always catch me by surprise.  It seems that as I get too comfortable with the weather conditions, comfortable with the predictability, even if it is cool and overcast, then a storm needs to show up.

It’s not much different with regards to my psyche.  Usually the days pass by predictably giving some measure of being at ease.  Then at the point where I almost forget getting caught in an inner storm, life seems to have a way of reminding me.   And when the storms come, I typically retreat into a quiet space much like a person hiding in a mountain cave waiting for the storm to pass.

Today in my quiet space I began to back up my photos on an external hard drive.  I am trying to protect them in case my laptop dies.  I think I have backed up about a hundred gigabytes of photos.  Why?  Each photo has done something for me at some point.  Erasing the photo doesn’t erase the effect, so why do I hang on to photos that I might never even look at again?

I guess it isn’t much different from the stuff stored in the unconscious of the psyche.  It’s always there doing its thing even if I never pay attention to it.  But then again, perhaps I will come back to it in order to better understand who I am at present.  For example; I never think of events from my early childhood anymore.  Yet not too long ago I saw a name and that name sent me back in time to an event I shared with some of my cousins.  It wasn’t what I would have considered a “signal” moment, so it surprised me that I still retained a memory of it.  Perhaps it is all there, somewhere, just in case.

Now, back to talking about photographs, I am surprised how precious “old” photos are for most people.  Working on producing photo presentations for various 50th anniversary celebrations, I am amazed at how excited people get in seeing old photos even when the quality of the photos make it almost impossible to figure out who is in the photo.  Something is touched that becomes more than the photo.  Perhaps one day my saved photos will touch someone.  If so, then they will have been well worth saving.

So, on a day like today while a storm rages outside, I wander through photos with thoughts on photos yet to take as well as those now settled securely in back-up files.  I realise that this quiet time is also a time for thinking, for dreaming.  In four to six weeks I hope to begin my next SoFoBoMo project.  Doing the work will result in my storing my photos for the project in a book shared with a photo community of several hundred as well as any who would find the book either here or by “accident” someday in cyberspace or the library.

A final note, my first two photo books are now cataloged in the National Library of Canada.  I received a phone call from the National Library informing me that they have now been added to the collection.  Book three will be ready before the end of the month.


6 Responses

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  1. whatever it feels like, it looks lovely. if only i looked so lovely during my storms.


    May 4, 2010 at 7:14 pm

    • It’s hard to know what one looks like in one’s storm. I would imagine it would be more of the hero or villain rather than our prosaic countenances. Besides all the focus ends up on the storm rather than the storm ravaged.

      Robert G. Longpré

      May 4, 2010 at 7:25 pm

  2. But don’t you think it would be more interesting to watch a beautiful person in the midst of a storm, rather than a dull person? I mean truly beautiful, as in shning through fom the soul because it cannot be hidden that though the person is filled with faults, they are also filled with life?
    Stephen Hawking observes that the universe was conceived in imperfection. Funny how we strive all our lives for perfection when we begin in imperfection? I wonder if this notion of “sin” is because we try to die? Because when the mess is cleaned up, it’s all over, the party has ended? Maybe striving for perfection is striving to die.
    I’m just wondering.

    • Actually, no. I don’t believe in “skin-deep” beauty. When I see those others would call plain or even ugly, I sometimes see a deeper beauty of the soul. When the soul is apparent, when there is an authenticity of presence, there is no ugliness.

      Robert G. Longpré

      May 5, 2010 at 11:35 am

  3. Congratulations on the books, and good luck with the 3rd one.

    The power of the old photograph to evoke memories and call us back to places where for some reasons we can ignore the bad that happened to us at that stage and remember the funny, the nostalgic, the good stuff. Seeing ourselves in our youth reminds of how far we have travelled, how hopeful and young we were. Things we still want in our lives.

    The storms of the soul can ravage us, but how often do we allow these storms to batter the world around us? I hid these storms from those around me, looking on the surface ‘normal’ as usual; working, caring for family – all the things we fill our lives with. Would letting these storms lash those around us help? Would it show them what we are going through, gain understanding, or frighten them? Would it be self-indulgence? “Look at me, see how I suffer”.

    I don’t know.

    Lotus Light

    May 4, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    • Thanks, Lotus. the power of storms fascinates me. The third book was finished long ago but has been very slow in the proofing department. I have decided to go with it as is as the proofreader has not been able to complete the task. Perhaps that is for the best, to leave it as is. Very soon, very soon. I will post here when it is ready to view and purchase.

      Robert G. Longpré

      May 5, 2010 at 11:33 am

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