Kinetic Poem IV 1989 46" x 88" mixed media on canvas
The FORCE of SPACE
As you look at space you find your awareness can flow and spread through it like light through water, encompassing small or vast areas of space. And if you sit quietly studying space for a period of time, you might also start to notice that space has an actual force to it, felt as the power of its presence. But unlike the force of an object which presses on you from one direction, the force in space can be felt as surrounding you, and in clearer states of consciousness, even permeating you. There is not much more to say about the force of space except to feel it, and then it will teach you of itself. When your awareness is strong, space can become so alive and its force so undeniable.
Exercise Step 1: Again, using the whole body as an organ of cognition, take a few moments and just sense the space around you. Feel your body being held in this ocean of space. Acknowledge there is a gentle force to space and be open to it. Feel the power of its presence. It is unobtrusive and exquisitely rarefied, yet in its stillness, it is teeming with power.
Step 2: Close your eyes, gently turn the focus of your attention inward, and observe the sense of inner space and its force. Expand the awareness of inner space until it encompasses the sensations of the whole body. Observe how the sensations from the different parts of the body, like your hands and feet, become pure energy, blending with the life of this inner space. Whatever thoughts or moods arise, see how they color this inner space as they pass through and fade away. Then with very little effort, imagine the inner and the space outside your body merging like two oceans, becoming one unified space. Rest in this space.
Flat Rock - Force of Space 2004
8" x 10.5" watercolor & colored pencil on paper
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FORCE of OBJECTS
If you are having difficulty sensing the force of space, be patient, for it is a form of perception you are perhaps not accustomed to as of yet. Insights will come when you least expect them. As is the case with the force of objects, do not strain or try too hard, or it will elude you.
Perhaps you have noticed one of the benefits of studying the force of objects and space, no matter how deep your revelations have gone, is that it has quieted your mind and helped open a door into the life of awareness and the richness of the moment.
Inner Space No. 24 1990
9" x 6.4" pastel on black paper
I have included a drawing done of space by a friend. It helps illustrate the wide range of interpretations of space that are possible. I enjoy the energy and fluid nature of his work. In my own drawings of space I tend to express its force in strong vertical lines. A drummer acquaintance also said he found it was natural to interpret space through rhythms, especially the sliding head tones of the conga drum.
Inner Space by Bobby Stone 2015
10" x 12" pastel on paper