Path of Hope by Bodhi Smith

"path of hope" a brand new impression and blog from me...
 
"i know my pathway to hope leads me though the silencing of foggy thoughts, through a calming forest of uncertainty, taking me to where i can lose myself one step at a time, while my faith guides me along the path to my fairytale, happily ever after― bodhinku, path of hope 
 
"when the future is foggy, and ahead lays opportunity clouded with much risk, it is better to tread a careful path through the uncertainty than to wait for the fog to clear, if it ever does" ― anonymous
 
"you have a choice: you can either strain and look at things appearing in front of you in the fog, painful as it might be, or you could relax and lose yourself" ― ken kesey, one flew over the cuckoo's nest
 
"there is no path into hope. hope is the path. there is no path into love. love is the path. there is no path into happiness. happiness is the path...the journey is what brings us peace, love and happiness, not the destination" ― dan millman, way of the peaceful warrior
 
"i will love you until the chances of us running into one another slip from slim to zero, and until your face is fogged by distant memory, and your memory faced by distant fog, and your fog memorized by a distant face, and your distance distanced by the memorized memory of a foggy fog. i will love you no matter where you go and who you see, no matter where you avoid and who you don’t see, and no matter who sees you avoiding where you go. i will love you no matter what happens to you, and no matter how i discover what happens to you, and no matter what happens to me as i discover this, and now matter how i am discovered after what happens to me as i am discovering this"  lemony snicket
 
"i stand here filled with hope, with this path before me leading me into the warm foggy forest high up in the mountains...knowing all i need to know is that this is where i must go...― bodhinku, path of hope 
 
"your eyes are the perfect mix of gray and brown, like fog in the woods" ― m. leighton, for the love of a vampire 
 
"into the fog was where i wanted to be. halfway down the path you can’t see anything. i couldn’t see but a few feet ahead. i didn’t meet a soul. everything looked and sounded unreal. nothing was what it is. that’s what i wanted—to be alone with myself in another world where truth is untrue and life can hide from itself" ― eugene o'neill, long day's journey
 
"if you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading" ― gautama siddhartha buddha, sayings of buddha

"so keep painting pictures of beautiful scenes, striking the canvas with deep blues and greens. if i could spare more remorse from my emptied out pores, i would maybe. 'cause the fog’s getting thicker, the world’s spinning fast. the chaos is building, it’s going too last. and it’s so hard to see, and you’re so hard to find, the days when i think i am losing my mind" 
― maroon 5, the fog
 
"be true to yourself, only you know your own real truth...follow your heart down your path through the fog into the deep forest, muting all the noise, and walk out into the meaningful light of the silent truth" ― bodhinku, the silent truth 
 
this first song is a lovely tune by an alternative rock band which i follow and listen to frequently. it's a soft heartfelt song from 2018, and one that gives me the feel of standing in a warm foggy forest full of hope with the path in front of me...it's a beautiful song full of meaningful lyrics and it's the perfect accompaniment to connect music with the meaning of my impression and blog today: "hope" by five for fighting ... (just click on any of the words in the blue links to listen to the musical selection)....

"when life's got you down and you can't make a sound because love has forsaken you. when you're burning on fire but have no desire to put out the flames and move. you gotta have hope. you gotta have something, there's always a reason to break. hope, because nothing less will save the day...when you are in pain then step of the train, nobody's waiting for you. you can knock down each door of all metaphors or embrace the cold hard truth. but you gotta have hope. you gotta have something. there's always a reason to break. hope, because nothing less will save the day...i see that look in your eyes. i've seen it before. each to our own disguise. if you need me babe, you're not alone, no, no. when life's got you down and you can't make a sound because despair has stolen your song. but raise up your fist and into the abyss scream, "coward, get of my lawn." hope. something. there's always a reason to break. hope, because nothing less will save the day" ― five for fighting, hope
 
"be into your own happiness...if you are happy, that's enough. stay on the path of discovery into what makes you hope: the path into yourself. discover this path that's only for you. it doesn't have to be crystal clear, so even if there's fog that makes it impossible to see even a step ahead of you, don't be afraid, and just slowly take it one step at a time, into it the fog, into the hope....don't give into the fear of the unknown, the distortions, or the unseen. move into and towards it all, and cherish that excitement. because when the fog clears up, who knows, you might just end up where you dearly hoped to be" ― bodhinku, the path of hope
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MEANING
"keep faith in your path. have faith in the light of hope through the fog. faith is a beautiful thing" ― bodhinku, path of hope
 
i stand here filled with hope, with this path before me leading me into the warm foggy forest high up in the mountains...knowing all i need to know is that this is where i must go...

i know my pathway to hope leads me though the silencing of foggy thoughts, through a calming forest of uncertainty, taking me to where i can lose myself one step at a time, while my faith guides me along the path to my fairytale, happily ever after...
 
i've always loved the metaphor of "the fog lifting" in terms of seeing things clearer...
 
and for me, the fog is special. it's a magical opportunity for unique meditation. it's simplicity is a real life metaphor helping to realize the path through confusion and noise...giving time to not think, but instead visualize the silence, time to wait and let go as the fog slowly lifts and burns off. i see and understand things so much clearer than before...
 
the fog blankets out the noise and quiets my mind. it's opaqueness makes it hard for me to see clearly, forcing me to pause and take things slower as i move forward. it helps me to forget all i'm lacking and know it's okay to be completely incomplete. the morning fog lets me be certain of my uncertainty, and know that's alright for now...
 
i've been walking around in a fog for quite a while lately. but in my honest opinion, that's not necessarily a bad thing...sometimes you need the fog to clear you out. need it to fog up the lens you are seeing life through so that can clean it off, and see things better. you get to see the world more cleanly, with a renewed view...
 
"fog" is defined as:
1. a thick cloud of tiny water droplets suspended in the atmosphere at or near the earth's surface which obscures or restricts visibility to a greater extent than mist, strictly reducing visibility
2. something that obscures and confuses a situation or someone's thought processes
3. to bewilder or puzzle
4. with reference to a glass surface, to cover or become covered with steam
 
each of these four definitions is applicable (in their own way) to the deeper meaning of my impression here today...
 
fog symbolizes confusion, danger, and the unseen. fog is a thick cloud that confounds us and causes us to lose our sense of direction. we can almost see through it, but often our perceptions are distorted. this pertains not only to the element of fog in the physical world, but also to the metaphor for fog in our psychological world...
 
in the physical world, we have all heard stories of massive vehicle pile-ups that occur on busy freeways when reckless motorists speed blindly into thick patches of fog, unable to see the obstacles on the road before them until it is too late...
 
we've also heard of pilots flying their helicopters into the hillside because the fog messed up their spatial orientation limiting their ability to determine angle, altitude, or speed. in the dense fog, there's no visible horizon, and the pilot loses their visual ability to tell which way is up and which way is down...this is how the pilot lost control of his helicopter in the fog in january of 2020 that killed himself, kobe bryant and his daughter, and six others ...
 
however, the danger and confusion that fog can present to us in the physical world is the same kind of danger and confusion that fog can present to us in our psychological world...
 
when referring to the psychological realm, we have cliches that serve as metaphors to describe the confusion and uncertainty that the "cloud of fog" represents. metaphors such as "foggy judgement" or "my mind is in a fog" or "when the fog clears..." describe the confusion and lack of clarity that baffle us when we try to make a decision without being able to "see" all the facts clearly...
 
fog is dangerous. fog hides things from us. fog distorts what we think we see...unfortunately, usually the truth...
 
if you're like me and you've been manipulated recently by an evil narcissist, then odds are you are having a hard time figuring out who has the problem, what is normal compared to what is problematic, and if your wants, needs, and feelings are valid. this confusion is often caused by what is known as the "fog"...the disastrous effects of being lost in the "fog" are confusion, crazymaking, people pleasing, an erosion of boundaries, and the ultimate loss of self. the "fog" is an acronym that stands for "fear, obligation, guilt." these three emotions are often at the core of manipulation and are often how narcissists, sociopaths, and other types of emotional manipulators go about controlling their targets...
 
so when we find our judgement "foggy" or our mind in a "fog", what we're really experiencing is the universe telling us that the time is not yet right for us to make a decision on whatever it is that we are clouded and confused about. it's telling us that we should wait until all the facts become visible and clear. any decisions we make with a foggy mind are not wise and not well thought through. these decisions will only open the door to more confusion and cause more problems.
 
in the physical world, the fog lifts as the sun eventually burns away the fog, enabling us to see everything clearly. the same holds true, serving as a metaphor for the psychological realm. by exercising patience and avoiding making decisions with an unclear mind, we'll find that our mental sun, a.k.a. illumination, will eventually burn away our mental fog, a.k.a. confusion. this allows us to "see" everything clearly and enables us to make our decision with a clear, unclouded mind...
 
and this impression today is a clear metaphor for walking down my own path, into the fog. a path where i'm a bit foggy of my decisions, so i'm waiting and letting go for now, letting things just be until the fog lifts a bit and things present themself clearer to me...and through to a clarity where i need to be...
 
like in this photo, right now, my path is taking me, leading and guiding me through the foggy unclear parts of my world, surrounded by the trees i love, cautiously treading into an unknown forest full of things that can hurt me...
 
"and remember, you never realize how thick your fog is until it lifts" ― bodhinku, your fog
 
and i'm oh-so close to where i want to be, as i can see the light at the end, even through the dark forest of trees, through the night, and through the fog, looking forward to passing to the other side where the light will find me, and the sun will shine clearly on me...my one day...
 
i keep faith in my path. i've faith in the light of hope through the fog. faith is a beautiful thing...
 
"i'm simply into my life right now, until i can be through the fog and into my light one day..." ― bodhinku, through the fog
 
and here is "high hopes" by panic! at the disco ... an upbeat melody with positive and inspiring lyrics, with a meaning that parallels the meaning of my blog and impression here today...sung by a pretty unique alternative band with a style all their own out of los vegas, nevada ... (just click on any of words in the blue links to listen to the musical selection) ...

"had to have high, high hopes for a living. shooting for the stars when i couldn't make a killing. didn't have a dime, but i always had a vision. always had high, high hopes. had to have high, high hopes for a living. didn't know how but i always had a feeling, i was gonna be that one in a million. always had high, high hopes...mama said, fulfill the prophecy. be something greater. go make a legacy, manifest destiny. back in the days, we wanted everything, wanted everything. mama said, burn your biographies. rewrite your history. light up your wildest dreams. museum victories, everyday, we wanted everything, wanted everything. mama said don't give up, it's a little complicated. all tied up, no more love and i'd hate to see you waiting...  had to have high, high hopes for a living. didn't know how but i always had a feeling, i was gonna be that one in a million. always had high, high hopes (high, high hopes)...mama said, it's uphill for oddities. stranger crusaders, ain't ever wannabes, the weird and the novelties. don't ever change. we wanted everything, wanted everything. stay up on that rise. stay up on that rise and never come down, oh. stay up on that rise. stay up on that rise and never come down...mama said, don't give up, it's a little complicated. all tied up, no more love and i'd hate to see you waiting. they say it's all been done, but they haven't seen the best of me. so i got one more run and it's gonna be a sight to see....had to have high, high hopes for a living. didn't know how but i always had a feeling, i was gonna be that one in a million. always had high, high hopes..." ― panic! at the disco, high hopes
 
"it's inevitable, that eventually at some point we are left standing alone in some misty fog, or rain, either metaphorically or literally (or both)...perplexed by our situation, how in the world did we get here? waiting for what to do next, as the mist surrounds us with uncertainty, shrouds our vision, enveloping us in its silent noise...however, we need see only the beauty of that moment, and see the wisdom of the fog. take a deep breath, breath in the heavy dampness, and listen...for in that moment, we can see the air around us, and watch our breath as we exhale, be reminded even the air is not invisible, it's real, it is life. and it's okay to not know what to do. just empower our self with the hope of taking a new step forward, take another deep breath and and take that step not knowing, be astonished with our life and where it will lead us again...and never forget we are still blessed to be alive and breathing in this beautiful world" ― bodhinku, when in the fog
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MORE QUOTES FOR EXTRA MEANING
"no one saves us but ourselves. no one can and no one may. we ourselves must walk the path into love" ― gautama buddha, sayings of buddha
 
"as humans, things are always changing around us. new chapters open and new beginnings sprawl promisingly in front of us. possibility shines brightly as we move towards some long held dream. desires inspire us and fuel our imagination. hope springs eternal, as the old saying goes...but, as there are always beginnings, invariably there will be endings. chapters close in our lives with the passing of time, situations and relationships transforming. some of them don’t work out the way we want, and we are forced to reconcile the loss of that which never was or will never be...we may not always be able to control the world around us, but we can control our actions...we have always have a choice, whether it’s how to act or react. we choose our intentions and our words. we can choose when these endings occur or our actions in the aftermath of that which is beyond our control. it’s not always easy, but our path on this planet is one of evolution and growth. we are here to expand as we experience. nothing stays the same and neither do we. we choose whether we grow through our wounds and fears, or whether we let them define our path on the planet....being a human isn’t always easy...in an ever changing world, how can we ever hope to stay afloat, let alone navigate the rough seas on the way to our dreams? how do we move towards the unknown in uncertainty and in some cases disbelief? the only thing ​i​ can offer is to root yourself in your own truth, deeper than you ever have before. put your energy and effort into your dreams and desires. focus your energy on what you want to grow...because at the end of the day, our medicine is what we are here to bring into being. relationships fall apart. life changes. but what you are here to bring to the world is something only you can. and that is something to instill us with hope, even in the face of the unknown" ― c. ara campbell
 
“one day while walking your path, you will stumble upon someone who will start a fire in you that cannot die. however, the saddest, most awful truth you will ever come to find is: they are not always with whom we spend our lives” ― beau taplin, hunting season
 
"pain, loss, and separation are inevitable on the path of love, and the only way of avoiding them is by deciding not to take that path at all. in order not to suffer, you have to renounce love. that is like putting out your own eyes in order not to see the bad things in life" ― paulo coelho, brida
 
"in a forest of a hundred thousand trees, no two leaves are alike. and no two journeys along the same path are alike" ― paulo coelho, aleph
 
"in order to have faith in his own path, he does not need to prove that someone else's path is wrong" ― paulo coelho, warrior of the light
 
"those who are near me do not know that you are nearer to me than they are. those who crowd in my path do not know that i am walking alone with you. those who love me do not know that their love brings you to my heart" ― rabindranath tagore, stray birds
 
“pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, into which you can walk with love and reverence" ― henry david thoreau, life in the woods
 
"it's funny how, in this journey of life, even though we may begin at different times and places, our paths cross with others so that we may share our love, compassion, observations, and hope" ― steve maraboli, unapologetically you
 
"faith is like radar that sees through the fog...the reality of things at a distance that the human eye cannot see" ― corrie ten boom
 
"people want to make certain about the future, about tomorrow, which cannot be done. don't waste your present moment trying to make the future unfoggy. the future is uncertainty, that is the very quality of the future. pertaining to the future, one can only wait, be alert, and cautiously move forward on their path" ― osho, the secret of secrets
 
“every moment, the taste of that beauty is in our mouths, another stashed into a pocket. impossible to say what: no tree so handsome, no sunlight, into a tunnel in the fog, a lonely hidden nest. other pleasure gathers a crowd, starts a fight, lots of noise there. but soul beauty stays quiet..her amazing whereabouts unknown inside my heart” ― jalaluddin rumi, poems of ecstasy and longing
 
"the fog clears and new energy makes you run up the path in front of you. be emptier, and cry like reed instruments cry. emptier, write secrets with the reed pen" ― jalaluddin rumi, the essential rumi
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ABOUT THE IMPRESSION
"i've been walking around in a fog for quite a while now. but in my honest opinion, that's not necessarily a bad thing...sometimes you need the fog to clear you out. fog up the lens you are seeing life through so that can clean it off, and see things better. you get to see the world more cleanly, with a renewed view" ― bodhinku, in a fog
 
this impression was captured on an old mountain road through an aspen forest in southwestern colorado as the evening fog was coming in on june 30, 2021...this composition is comprised of one single frame long exposure (f/11@55mm for 111 secs, iso-64)
 
in my photography, i always use filters to create longer exposure effects, saturate colors naturally, and balance the light in my composition in-camera...i often use as many as four filters at time, and i always use at least one filter in my completed impressions...
 
and to get the effects and balance i was looking for in the exposure in this foggy forest, i used two progreyusa filters: first, a 3.0 nd progrey antarctica filter to bring the light in the image down 10 stops and permit for the long 1 min and 51 second exposure which allows for the moving light to paint different glowing points into the composition as well as naturally saturate all the greens and reds in the image; second, combined with a 0.9 gnd progrey aurora filter to help balance in-camera overall the image the way i envisioned it...in this case, to stop down the much brighter light in the upper parts of the trees and create a more profound sunburst, plus more evenly balance the exposure between the brighter tree tops and the darker foreground and shadow parts of the image... 
 
i also used the progrey g-120z magnetic holder to hold the filters and secure the filters to my nikon d810 with a nikon nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8... 
 
i wish to openly thank my sponsors who have always supported me through both the good and bad times...for truly this long exposure impression would not be possible without the use of my induro phq3 series 5-way panhead with induro carbon fiber stealth tripod in combination with the progreyusa filters which i use with every photo i take...
 
"if nothing else...if i open my eyes, if i hope, if i cry, if i think, if i sigh, if i giggle, if i dance, if i love, if i breathe, then i have lived a full days worth of life...nothing is wasted, nothing" ― bodhinku, if nothing else
 
"i do not want you to just be into my photography, instead, i'd much rather you take a journey into my pictures, and feel the impression i have created, feel it with all your senses" ― bodhinku, into my photography
 
"contemplate without thinking. be certain only in your uncertainty. stop the world. slow down everything. let it all be. shut off the noise. relax. seize this moment. reconnect. feel and sense what surrounds you. listen to all the colors of light whisper as they envelope you. see the melody and harmony that float about unnoticed. taste the solitude of all this wonderment. smell the beautiful silence. now discover your peaceful serenity. then, reach out and touch your faith with all your senses. this is my world. awaken!" ― bodhinku, my world
 
"my photography is my way of keeping a diary" ― bodhinku, my diary  
 
i leave you today wishing
that bright joy and spiritual peace fill your life...
imploring you to make every moment count,
no matter what, always and forever,
for that is the only thing that truly matters...    
 
and above all else,
i hope this message and impression find you well.
 
namaste,
bodhi
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