The felt the big emptiness this morning. It actually started yesterday afternoon, but I did not notice or label it as such until this morning. It is not depression. I know depression. It’s close, but not the same. There is no despair, no deep sadness or lowness that comes with depression. It is just an empty feeling, an absence, and a deep sense of loneliness and longing.
At first, I noticed myself trying to cover it up with distractions, listening to music, watching television, doing sudoku puzzles, browsing through a bookstore. These are worthy pursuits in their own way, and in their own time, in moderation of course. There are worse types of distractions to chase after, but regardless of the labels, they are temporary, fleeting, ultimately unfulfilling. The emptiness remains. I can get myself all worked into a frenzy about it with this sense of bubbling negative energy that seeks desperately to be released, as the anxiety builds in a claustrophobic.
Labels can set limits to someone or something, especially ideas. There comes a sense of peace with labeling this feeling—it is not exactly a feeling, not exactly a knowing, but it is the closest word I can find to describe it—an empitness. I cannot define it. The label is just a pointer, a signpost to it. It is not exactly correct either. It is more like a nothingness. How do you describe or define nothingness, emptiness? Only by its outline, its edges, of where it is not, can you attempt to get a handle on it. But that is not exactly correct either, because there are no boundaries to it, to the nothingness, to the emptiness. It seems to permeate everything, as silence permeates and gives existence to every sound.
There is nothing for me to do. I feel a call to just sit with it, to be with it, and stare into it. Oddly enough, I do not expect it to doing anything in return. I do not expect anything to happen. I just want to be with it.
I repeat the prayer from last week’s post:
Do not take away the hunger of my soul
or let me fill it with spiritual trifles,
ready to hand, sweet to the taste,
but good for only a moment’s satisfaction.
Deepen my hunger.
Enkindle my desire.
Come to me in the longing in my heart,
for in my emptiness you are present.
Maybe this is what Simone Weil meant by “waiting for God”?