Is it engineering or design?

By | April 25, 2022

Looking back at the last year, since I began writing again on the blog looking for the magic of my keyboard, I can see how far I have shifted my perspective – one of the goals for the initiating the introspection. Just over a year ago, I was lamenting intangible losses – vocabulary, for example – from immersion in the interwebz for what felt like far too long. If I did not have this means to pull up those thoughts from March 2021, I don’t think I’d have even remembered I had experienced this loss. This implies the faculty for prose composition has returned. So much has occurred over these past 12 months that if I was not taking the time out now, to sit down and reflect, I would not have noticed.

Academically, I received notification on friday past that I’d passed the mid-term doctoral review – a go/no go stage in my studies. I can see the difference between what I’d been writing in February, for a conference paper, and what I wrote in my dissertation work plan for the review submitted at the end of March. This difference is enormous. Was it a sudden and exponential change or was it that it was ‘under construction’ all these months and simply flowered into being under the time pressure of the deliverable?

There seems to be more to it than just this – a change in perception and mindset; there’s also a recognition that the focal length of my mind’s eye I was striving to adjust one year ago has indeed come home. Pulled in from the wider world on the horizon that it was accustomed to be focused on, I find my worldview oriented from my own domestic sphere, looking outward. A goal I’d aspired to reach. Last year, I said:

“…the time had come for me to change the focal length of my mind’s eye … from the far ahead and into the future to the domestic and in the present moment, the now and the immediate, the local and the life’s daily contents.[…] I sense I have arrived at the endpoint of a journey … That this orientation on far horizons of time, rather than space, has come to serve its purpose, and that a new orientation was now required for this later stage of my life.”

Last night, when talking to my friend Samim, I recognized my focal length had fundamentally changed. And, the change in its calibration has been a beneficial one. More stability, more peace. Roots have grown and captured the earth, not simply an anchor holding a hot air balloon. Grounding in the truest sense of the word. I can now only hope that this novel orientation and path bears the promised fruits.

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