Why do you think/sense/know that you as an individual are here on planet earth? Why am I here? Well, I believe, I'm here to learn ... to be human, to be present, to love and make my love visible. I'm here to turn my experience into wisdom and walking my talk. I'm here to be free and fearless in times of turbulence and fear. I'm here to model this by being it, living it, sharing it. I'm also here to reconnect with the sacred and pollinate with beauty, playfulness and freedom. Maybe I'm here to help us to be brave and live more wholesome, heart-felt and self-directed lives.
What is it that makes your life worthwhile?
Life itself. Life is an amazing adventure. A journey of discovery. No matter what happens, I'm always curious and alive with this sense of adventure and discovery and the desire to experience it all - people, places, wilderness, animals, languages, creations and change. I feel driven to connect the dots between the intimate and the universal, the self and society, between nature, body and culture, and try to make sense of this dance between the inner and outer landscapes of our existence. I'm fascinated with what and how we change, as humans and as collectives, and as I'm maturing, I'm having great compassion for our plight and the barriers for true change to occur.
What do you want to manifest in your life?
I do feel my next 'edge' is to let myself express even more freely all that I carry inside as an artist and author. I would love to continue making images, books, maybe films, that touch and let others see life, themselves, each other, a little differently.
What does it mean for you to be present?
Good question. To me, there's the kind of ecstatic presence available to us when our total self-consciousness drops away, and you loose yourself in the act of creating, dancing, writing, swimming, meditating or beautiful transcendent intimacy. That is the longing I think we all carry - to loose ourselves into pure being-ness, lifted into the great blue void (that's sort of how I see-feel it).
Then there's the more embodied presence with what is and who is that requires the willingness and ability to drop your wants, agendas, stories, interpretations and judgments, even letting go of 'efforting' and 'trying' (or the very least being aware of showing up with all of such things), and to open up to the moment with curiosity and trust towards what emerges and unfolds. Presence means available, with nothing to defend, uphold or withhold.
What is your understanding of success in life?
Damn. Another hard question. Success to me means living what is true, alive, has heart and carry integrity for me. Success is trusting the intelligence of life and let it guide you to where you need to go. Success is allowing yourself (and others) to change. Success is to turn your experiences and information into knowing and walking your wisdom, in every day life. Success is awakening to your humanity, taking care of yourself, your loved ones and the land you live on and from. Success is to share yourself freely and enjoy the dance with 'the other'. All other successes will have more substance and meaning if they blossom from here ...
Which issues keep you up at night?(not because you worry about them but because you want to gain deeper knowledge/knowing about them!)
Well, the personal concerns about where to make my new nest and raise the funds needed to publish my book aside, it is usually compelling company, engrossing books and a hot moon that keeps me up at night. :)
And, of course, there are the inquires that runs beneath my skin:
The challenges of change: When each person, each generation, each society seems to insist on learning their own lessons, making their own mistakes, and growing their own history within current contexts, human evolution is actually very slow, even in an era obsessed with progress, profit and efficiency. Change is not a linear trajectory, progress is subjective, and a sense of (false) speed allows us to loose sight of the long view. On some level you can say the world is fine, the planet keeps on keeping on, as the planet does, but we humans are suffering at the hands of our own creation. Put metaphorically: water is sacred, it's our life source, we're polluting it, slowly killing ourselves. How do we turn what we know about our inter-dependence with everything around us to wisdom and different behaviors?I'm less interested in concepts and fancy paradigm dreams, more interested in how we embody what we know in our hearts and act accordingly. To me we live in times of the great unveiling. We can no longer get away with living lies. None of us. What are we as individuals willing to sacrifice to thrive better as a collective? I'm not thinking in terms of giving something up, rather, what can we give in, what can we give to.
- Why do my life feel more and more like a movie? With consciousness expansion, virtual reality and internet connecting us above and beyond linear time and space, life seems more and more like a projection inside my own being and consciousness.
On one hand, it's magical, on the other, oddly, adding to a sense of being unmoored, exiled in body, life and land. I think about identity, exile and belonging as themes of today, and wonder to that extend this inner-and inter-connected world of ours will actually make us ever-more disconnected from body, soil and community.
- Why do I feel at odds with the "feminine paradigm"? My search for 'the feminine' and desire to unveil the liberated female spirit has shaped my life and work for the past 15 years, if not all my life, and taken me deep into the underworlds of the feminine/masculine dance and dynamics, beyond the gender politics and patriarchy spells.
Some years back, I set out to be the frontrunner for this paradigm, and illustrate all the ways in which the feminine was alive and awake, but two things happened: First, I realized that what I was really seeking and longing for now, was the masculine – where was it? Spiritually, but indeed also, man.
Second, spiritual leaders, female lifestyle brands, goddess empowerment programs and management pop culture began to claim the future as feminine. Even if this felt like a natural progression, I couldn't not but feel that once again, the feminine was being appropriated and diluted, rather than embraced and venerated as a inherent other-half of the equation.
The feminist and sexist debate of today between men and women is as toxic as ever, stuck in polarization and segregation, moving us nowhere new. Perhaps we are doomed to continue fighting. Perhaps we need to elevate the feminine to help women and men come together as equal partners.
I don't know. I feel as strong as anyone about equality, human dignity and justice, but as cultures, we are regressing, and I wonder – can we circumvent the toxic battle -- and those words that keep us inflamed -- and approach the inevitable feminine/masculine dance from another vantage point?
I may never find it, but to the very least, I hope to one day express what I see and sense.
Lone Morch is an international award-winning author, photographer, speaker and creative catalyst with 25+ years experience in project leadership in personal, program and organizational development, entrepreneurial education, media production, photography and book publishing.
Her creative work lives on the crossroads between veils, words, art, body, identity, culture and change. In 2004 she founded Lolo’s Boudoir for women’s self-expression, and her upcoming book, Unveiled, chronicles her intimate photographic encounters with about 1,000 women of all ages and stages of life.