In my year long word study of LIGHT - recall my One Little Word® for 2018 is LIGHT - I have already begun searching out ways - and words - to study light. I want to actively engage with my word. Be intentional. Because - although the sun will rise everyday, and light will shine in the darkness, light - in me - will not create itself. Whilst researching light, I came across this quote:
Keep your face to the sunshine and you can never see the shadow - Helen Keller
Sunshine versus shadow intrigued me. Sunshine and light versus shadow and darkness, or darker. Knowing that Helen Keller was both visually and aurally challenged and yet was able to write those words fascinated me even more and I know there was significance for me and for others seeking light in her words. Because Keller was unable to see the sunshine or the shadows meant this quote had to be a reflection of something other than actually seeing sun and shadows. Maybe, it reflected an inner experience of sunshine and shadow, of light and dark, of peace and rage, of truth and falsehood, of love and hate. While she may be able to feel the warmth of the sunshine she could not feel a shadow yet she was able to say 'keep your face to the sunshine and you can never see the shadow.' I can only assume she was talking metaphorically, or an outlook on life - maybe.
I took note that sunshine, light, is warm and bright, and nourishes the earth, and, yes, necessary for life to flourish. When looking, or keeping your face to the sunlight one cannot also be looking behind at the shadow at the same time, instead one looks ahead. Looking forward. To Possibility. To Hope. To the future.
That must be how Helen Keller had to see or visualize sunlight and shadows. In a time when others like her, with her handicaps, had little hope, she looked at the light instead of the shadow and did spectacular, brilliant things that guided those, like her, even decades later. A guiding light. She had a guiding light and became a guiding light.
As noted, sunshine and shadow are obviously being used metaphorically. It maybe that sunshine means love and goodness and truth. And shadow means that which is not - love, goodness, or truth. Keeping your face to love, goodness, and truth, fixing our eyes (whether we can see visually or not) on that which is...and moving in the direction of makes me think of...
"So we don't look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever." - 2 Corinthians 4:18 NLT
Helen Keller had to have spiritual eyes. It was her spiritual eyes that saw light and not shadow.
How else would she know that when the shadows are at your back, and not in front of you, they cannot affect your vision or ability to see because she...
"Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Philippians 4:8 NLT