s: stillness into stagnation
Etymology: The origin of this symbol and spectrum
I developed “s” after deciding to go to Australia for three months. I had been depressed, and I needed a change, a radical change from my safe office life, my usual get up, go to work, come home, get up, go to work existence. So I vowed to change who I was and take a sabbatical.
Oddly enough, I did not feel the need for an s of stillness, of calm. A good friend of mine, when first going through the Rose alphabet, suggested this stagnation as a missing concept. She has been going through some major depressions, and she is grappling with the despair that seems like it will never end. How can you relate this?
Well, at first, I thought it should go with “d” of distance, but that did not seem to make all that much sense. I do not really have a separate in the “h” spectrum/concept for the joy of life and the anguish of death, but I did not think that this stagnation, this despair, truly belonged with the concept of death. Stagnation, stillness, even death, is a state of being between changes. Change is inevitable—it is just the space between changes that is long or short or nonexistent.
Orthography: How to remember these symbols
The “s” of change has its left arrow pointing back to the past, to where we have been, and its right arrow to the future, to where we are going, for we read English as left to right. The “s” of stillness is the same, only now there is a line between the arrows of change, indicating a rest. A period between.
Philosophy: How I use these symbols to embrace life
My friend and I have been using the “s” of stillness to show how long that period is. We can choose when to end it—when to lift the pen from the paper to draw the arrow of our lives in a new direction.