On Light By Natasha Scripture

by | November 29, 2021, 16:55 IST


Light Will Guide You Home
For Femina’s 62nd anniversary, we got some of our favourite authors and poets to share their interpretation of light.

On Light
By Natasha Scripture

Natasha Scripture, Photograph: Maggie Marguerite Studio

Author of Man Fast, Natasha Scripture is an author, poet, activist and former aid worker. As a spokesperson for the United Nations, she covered humanitarian crises around the world. Before the UN, she worked as a writer, producer and editor for a variety of organisations. 

The idea of light conjures up all kinds of positive imagery in my mind – air embossed with sunshine, crisp and nourishing; countless celestial objects orbiting our planet, a glowing moon, eclipses, meteor showers, shooting stars and other extravaganza; weightlessness; spiritual awakenings. No matter what vision comes to mind, light is considered to have medicinal properties in most cultures. Light therapy is an actual thing, of course, used for physical and psychological healing, to lift our moods and improve our well-being; this centuries-old practice dates back to ancient Egypt, Greece, China and India. Light is good, it is the main source of energy for all living organisms. It is a sustainer of life.

When I think of light, I think of a place where breathing is easier, where answers are within reach, where possibility persists, where the velvet curtains of life are drawn back, and we come to know what we are supposed to know. It is the antidote to heaviness, to darkness, though those qualities also serve a purpose. We need all of it.

People associate darkness with depression, with something sinister or negative, but, when we feel encapsulated by darkness, lost, that is when most of our inner work is being done. It is like being in a chrysalis, inside a place where transformation happens, where we emerge re-born, even more worthy of the journey we are on. Life deals us blows, we experience darkness, we experience disappointment, we don’t want to go on, but we do – this is how we become resilient, layered, rich – always better than before.

The ancient Persian poet Rumi wrote, “The wound is the place where the light enters you.” There is nothing truer. Grief, heartache – these are invitations to know ourselves on a deeper level. They are gifts, even though at first they seem like punishments.

We have such fear of suffering, of our own, of others, of the experience of it, but I can only say that I am grateful for mine. There has been more of it than I would have imagined I could handle – the death of my father, the demise of relationships that took me years to recover from, the loss of myself in an all-consuming career in humanitarian aid that pushed me to the brink, even the loss of myself in early motherhood, I could argue. Sometimes I grieve for the ‘old me,’ the young, ravishing woman untainted by anything, but how interesting was she?

I like my layers now, and the wisdom that comes with hardship. We can still be full of light and love, no matter what we have endured. We can surrender to our dark moments, knowing that the light is always there, even though we may not see it at first. We can know sorrow, but we can also know hope. We can embrace both of them, and still thrive, knowing that we are living the full spectrum of the human experience.

Also read: The Light Within By Rajni Sekhri Sibal
Subscribe to our YouTube channel


Be the first one to comment.
View More Comments