My last night in Sarajevo I had a decision to make. I had an opportunity to go to dinner with some of my good friends I made this summer (which is what everyone was doing) or to go to my favorite spot in the city, the 9th floor of a hotel nearby with a wrap around patio, to watch the sunset. Watching the sun set on the last day I would be in Sarajevo this summer was really important to me. It seemed even more important for me to reflect on my time in Sarajevo. The passing of time is such an intimate experience. The events that have happened in my life, the places I have traveled, the people I have known…they have all impacted how I experience the passing of time. I believe that it is an experience that is unique to each individual. Consciously meditating on the passage of time is a powerful experience. Birth, the passage of time, and death are three constants that every soul undoubtedly experiences. Nothing outlasts the passage of time.
I think that is why I have found wherever I travel that holding space for quiet moments in the rising and setting of the sun has been really important to me. It is a spiritual experience to me. It is an organic visual representation of time. The sun represents all of the things that I feel a deep sense of connectedness with in this lifetime. Without it none of them would exist. To sit in the gratitude of it all is a meditative moment because nothing else in my life brings me to that moment of singularity. The divine experience of gratitude. Being in a genuine space of gratitude requires sitting in vulnerability. It is not something I particularly have a great track record with.
I have experienced a lot of things this summer that have to do with a side of humanity that I haven’t had a lot of exposure to. Undoubtedly due to a certain amount of conscious and unconscious self preservation. Experiencing a culture where heinous crimes were committed in a war in the not so distant past was an experience that I don’t even have words for. I’m not even sure that I have the language skills to express my feelings. The thing that I realized, in that space of meditation, is that it’s okay. I think I felt unnecessarily pressured, by myself, to define my experience. To find emotions and language that fit because in some way I felt that if I could it would be easier to deal with. The truth is that maybe in the attempts to define how we experience certain events in our lives that we limit ourselves. There is peace in allowing yourself to sit in things without trying to define or analyze them.