Stillness: Art of doing nothing

A hotel in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India

In my last post I collected three comics on Calvin and Hobbes on their adventure of doing nothing.

What does it mean to do nothing? I know what it means literally, but what would be Calvin’s take on this subject, I wonder

Does it really mean hanging on a tree trunk and settling for a snooze fully knowing that mum and dad are in charge, life is wonderful and there is not a thing to worry about? Perhaps that would make sense to a 5 year old, but me?

Or does it just mean what it does, namely not having anything specific to do marked on my calendar? What do you have to say Calvin? No meetings, no shopping, no work, no cooking & cleaning up?

What really is a “doing nothing” moments?

We live in a madly accelerating world, where new technologies — for all their benefits — are making our lives more crowded, chaotic and noisier than ever. There’s never been a greater need to slow down, tune out and give ourselves permission to be still.

A prolific journalist for Time magazine and a travel writer Pico Iyer, in his book The Art of Stillness, suggests that the greatest adventure may be found in going nowhere.

This book offers practical wisdom on reducing stress through stillness. In an age of speed, I began to think, nothing could be more invigorating than going slow. In an age of distraction, nothing can feel more luxurious than paying attention. And in an age of constant movement, nothing is more urgent than sitting still.

In our chaotic time, the greatest luxury is actually the ability to go nowhere and do nothing. To Iyer, it’s this time for quiet, inward, still reflection that snaps all of our experiences into focus.

Doing nothing…isn’t about turning your back on the world; it’s about stepping away now and then so that you can see the world more clearly and love it more deeply.


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