personal tectonics

in the gap between rationality and emotion, forces of nature become my metaphor for human experience. within this nature-as-experience metaphor, i’m interested in stories: our stories, my stories, her stories. stories about how we interact with one another, with groups and with ourselves. through stories, we create our internal emotional worlds, worlds that help us to make sense of an external reality. my own external reality involves culture, landscape and place.

my working metaphor is inspired by descriptions of the richter scale, which measures the intensity of earthquakes. earthquakes are caused by stress released by tectonic plates beneath the earth’s crust. the tremors just under the earth’s surface are like the emotional tremors within our internal worlds. they range from micro quakes that happen daily—not felt, but not unrecorded—to major quakes that are less frequent, but can cause significant damage in populated areas.

“i am realizing the natural world is my connection to myself.” the solitude i find in the outdoors is meditative; i wonder, are we really that different from nature? our personal disasters are as sudden and forceful, as devastating and destructive, as insignificant. they are terrible. they are beautiful.