Tuesday, April 5, 2016

What Does The Word Mean - Part VII

"I know all those words, but that sentence makes no sense to me."
Matt Groening

Have you ever thought those words as you are reading? I ran across this quote and thought of David Whyte's book Consolations: the solace, nourishment and underlying meaning of everyday wordsThis is a book I am reading with an online group, Adventures In Seeing, led by Kim Manley Ort. We read his thoughts on a word, form our on opinions, and then taking or finding a picture to illustrate the word.

Sometimes Whyte's thoughts confuse me. He likes to use a lot of words in his sentences. For example one sentence I read had:  93 words, 2 colons, 10 commas, and 1 period. That makes it just a little complicated for me to follow. I have to break down the sentence phrase by phrase and then sometimes I just don't understand what he's trying to say. It has definitely been a mental challenge for me, but oddly enough, I like the challenge. I don't always agree with Whyte. He can be negative and I'm not, so I do my own research even on the simplest of words. His definitions usually make me think of the word in a way that I haven't before. 

Here is the next six words in this project, my thoughts, and my pictures to illustrate them. Enjoy!

* * * * *


If we open ourselves to pain, we open ourselves to being compassionate and caring when others suffer.

"Suffering produces perseverance,
perseverance, character,
and character,
Romans 5:3-4

* * * * *


Webster's definition of parallel is: (1) extending in the same direction, everywhere equidistant and not meeting (2) very similar and often happening at the same time. A synonym for the word parallel is companions: one that is closely connected with something similar. 

As I thought about the definition of parallel and its synonym, I thought of our group at Adventures in Seeing. We are a group who are closely connected with our passion for photography. We are walking parallel paths, but sadly we will probably never meet, just as two parallel lines never intersect. I have been encouraged and inspired walking this parallel path with so many talented friends.

* * * * *


Who am I?
I am a pilgrim who is on a journey from the moment I was born till the day I will die. What lies ahead is unknown, a mystery, a pathway leading through highs and lows. I am trying to take this pilgrimage slowly, moment by moment, not dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, but trusting that God knows what is ahead and strengthens me for the journey.

"What lies ahead is often unknown.
But keep traveling."
Lailah Gifty Akita

* * * * *


The word "procrastination" often brings negative thoughts. But, as David Whyte says "What looks from the outside like our delay; our lack of commitment; even our laziness may have more to do with a slow, necessary ripening through time and the central struggle with the realities of any endeavor to which we have set our minds." Sometimes it might be to our advantage to sit back, think things through, and complete the task at a later time, much like this tulip that unfurls its petals slowly and at the right moment.

* * * * *


I have a tendency to say "I won't regret this" or "I don't regret that," when in all honesty I have regrets. Regrets can be like prickly thorns that spear me when I'm most vulnerable or I can acknowledge them, learn from them, and grow.

* * * * *


"To rest is not self indulgent, to rest is to prepare to give the best of ourselves, and to perhaps most importantly arrive at a place where we are able to understand when we have already been given."  David Whyte

colors of blue and green
sounds of water and birds
feeling wind and sunshine
smelling flowers and damp earth

These things slow my breathing and my mind. In nature I find rest.

* * * * *

I've recently discovered through a friend's blog a new word that describes me - logophile. A logophile is someone who loves words. I do love words. I like to read them, write them, and study them. I also enjoy this project of taking pictures to illustrate them. Let's see, we've studied words from A through R. I wonder what R through Z will bring. I hope you come back to find out!  


  1. I enjoyed re-reading your interpretations on the words we are studying from Whyte's book. He does seem to present things in a complicated way and they are often a challenge to me because I also tend to see the positive side of things. It's always exciting to find an image that goes with our own thoughts and you have done so well with all yours here!

  2. This project is fascinating to me - I like seeing the photos you've chosen to interpret the words. At the rate snow is falling just now, my bulbs and perennials will procrastinate until June!

  3. Your photos so perfectly convey the meanings of each of these words, Cathy! I look forward to seeing what R-Z brings!

  4. Great words. I especially love procrastination, that fit see to a tee.

  5. I like that word "Logophile". It describes my son to a tee: when he was little, he used to ask me who invented words and how they came up with the words they did to describe something. When you discover the Inventor of Words, let me know! ; )

    What a neat exercise you're doing here, Cathy!

  6. I have said it once or twice how good you are at these types of words and photography but you are. I always enjoy your get aways and this type of posts. I don't enjoy reading complicated wording, for whatever reason my eyes and brain blur. I much prefer the light hearted approach.

  7. As always, I love your take on these words. Your image for Parallel was especially interesting to me, because I usually think of parallels as straight lines, from the illustrations in my high school geometry class. Your beautiful curving repeated lines inspire me to try to think in fresher, not so literal ways. I love that quote from Matt Groening, too. I have occasionally expressed that very thing myself! I've never read David Whyte, but I admire your determination to understand what he is saying and to learn from it in your own way. It doesn't sound like he makes it easy!

  8. I can feel your connection to this project Cathy and this weeks illustrations are really exceptional. You need a lot of creativity to participate in this challenge, you have that, you think outside the box and it is so evident in your images. I always photograph the obvious, you stretch your imagination and that's what I enjoy most when viewing your pictures!!


Thanks so much for stopping by!!