‘The trust of Innocents - New Zealand fur seal pup’
Charcoal engraving on board 40 x 29 cm. $ 1595
There are places you can find in this world where things are pretty much like they have always been...but you do have to exert yourself since these places are harder to reach than the locations which are usually over run with humans.
I ached in my 61 year old muscles for days after my recent visit to the place where this little New Zealand fur seal pup and his extended family live. The mad jumble of boulders and cliffs looks like some hysterical giant hurled the landscape around inside a bucket and then dumped it on the wild sea edge where the fur seals have adapted to love it as a safe refuge away from humans.
My time in this magical place was without another human soul and I was able to take my time, paying attention to the things which the seals were telling me about personal space and comfort zones. In this way I was accepted into the colony and some of the tiny pups like this little bloke even waddled over to say hi and sniff my hand.
At such time I experience what Joseph Campbell described as 'peak moments' ....when words fail to contain the scope and depth of the physical and spiritual experience. He described them also as 'Aaah moments'....when the human mind can only stare and say ‘Aaah!’....These are the moments when we know the sublime beauty of our existence in nature....it is the essence of Zen....of being fully alive in that moment. For that privilege I am truly thankful to all of the glorious fellow critters with whom we share this lil blue planet.
I hope that this charcoal engraving captures some of that joy which I found in that place....with that critter....and in that moment.