It seems to me that nowadays we put all of our experiences into images before we had a chance to feel the moment. Selfies and views of our travels often goes public via Istargram and Facebook before we had a chance to live them fully, understand them thoroughly and remember them sweetly.
This idea made me think of the Rene Magritte’s (1898-1967) surrealist painting. The painting depicted a pipe in naturalistic style with a note underneath: “Ceci n’est pas une pipe” -this is not a pipe. Magritte passed away a good 40 years before social media, but his artistic commentary fits our current dilemmas of life perfectly. An image is not the same as the experience. A picture is not the same as what is on the picture, it is simply a two dimensional representation that is creating an entirely different experience. Oh we forget this so much! Gazing at other people’s experiences on Facebook and Instagram, we make assumptions about other people’s life and happiness. Of course we all know that nobody would post the hardest moments of their life for the world to see, but still we live in this ‘picture perfect’ world. I often joke if the old parable about the tree falling in the forest could be re-written for our happy moments; If a happy moment happens and nobody is there to take a picture, did the happy moment happened at all?
We almost had to answer to that question during our yoga retreat. Up until the last day we pretty much forgot the outside world, nobody was taking pictures. We had amazing classes, we hiked to amazing destinations, we may have even hit the pub in Roslyn once or twice, but there was hardly any picture taking till the very last day. Then in a frenzy we remembered that we should document that we are having fun. These images don’t reflect the retreat. You cannot see the friendships that formed, you cannot hear the birds chirping during our meditation, you are not experiencing someone’s renewed faith in the impossible, nor can you feel the bubbles in the Jacuzzi or how the red wine combined with chocolate mousse on our palette. But these are few images of days that we will not forget and I hope it will inspire some of you to share this amazing experience with us in the future.