Light and shadow

Self-portrait shadow in Cambodia © Jojie Alcantara
Self-portrait shadow in Cambodia © Jojie Alcantara

“There are no shadows in darkness. Shadows are created by light, and only exist in the presence of light. Refusing to acknowledge our shadow leads us to deny the presence of light in us.” ― Franco Santoro

… And the monk glanced at my shadow cast upon walls etched with ancient history, an expression on his face dismissing me as just one of those tourists that have passed this route without merely a greeting nor interest in his origin, and his people’s ancient plight. But I was interested. We remained disconnected, however, bridged only by a culture so rich and deeply unnerving. I should have stopped for a moment to chat.

Yet in this hurried world, we bump into people we barely remember, no matter how interesting the conversation was.

The funny thing is, we also share an intimacy with certain people in some phases of our lives, and find that as years pass, those moments fade from memory, as if you barely knew them at all. Whatever pain, excitement, anger you once bonded with such an individual, everything has come down to: “What was the name again?”

In humanity, we may cast a bright light on some people, while we leave a blur of shadows in others. Either way in time…we silently fade into obscurity.

Angkor Wat temple ruins, Siem Reap, Cambodia (April 2012)  © Jojie Alcantara

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