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I suspect that your comment section is going to be folks quoting your writing to you anyway, so I’ll just go ahead and do it too.

“...the lushness of our surroundings became a living temple in which we were quite blissfully engulfed. Tiny worshippers, immersed in the breathing lungs of this sacred earth.”

CHLOE. It’s SO GOOD.

And I’m thankful you didn’t accept the rainforest’s invitation. I’m grateful to have you as a fellow fog-wanderer and delight in basking in the glow of the lamp you hold before you.

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Nathaniel, YOU are SO GOOD ☺️ Seriously, I so appreciate your enthusiasm. I’m happy to remain as-yet-undecomposed, too, and I’m most grateful to be a fog-wanderer alongside you! Thank goodness we both have lamps, and plenty of fuel for them!

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Nov 18, 2023Liked by Chloe Hope

“as the spectre of insanity seems to creep, like a fog, into every recess of society” 👏👏 you write so beautifully, Chloe. I loved this piece. Share the wish to escape the human, even as it confounds me when I think how in the abstract, in art, we’ve created so much impossible beauty. ❤️

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Jill, thank you, my fellow cauldron stirrer ✨And I hear you, it’s a constant push pull. Thank goodness for the beauty we’ve managed to rustle up--it might be the one thing that acts as defence against the insanity spectre ❤️

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Really nice photo of that Toucan. I like this line you write: "Mortality is deeply offensive to the ego—but in the moments that I allow myself to feel the truth of just how tenuous “I” am." So true and makes me that much more appreciative of those small moments and find my own patron saint of noticing! :)

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Such a beauty, right? I’m so glad you liked that line, and that you can appreciate the little moments. They’re so worth appreciating.

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How I wish all the world's leaders could read your writing and think about their place and actions on this Earth, Chloe.

As always, your entire post is quoteable. It shifts through melancholy and miracle and is a reminder to do just what the title says.

The toucan is a most majestic bird. I went to Guatemala and Belize in 2016 (?) with Jo and my folks. My father is a huge bird lover and photographer and we were lucky to see a lot of toucans, the same rainbow-billed ones I believe. Incredible things.

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Nathan, that's a very lovely thing to say. Thanks, friend.

I swear that every time I post something, someone then in the comments or a restack, comes up with something that would have been a way better title (melancholy and miracle). Every time. I don't know how to deal with this without having access to adequate time travel...

We have a friend who lives in Belize and we've been meaning to go forever, the colours of their birds! I adore British birds, obviously, head over heels, but colour wise they can tend towards the browns... I'm not complaining! Just noticing 😬 So happy you got to enjoy the miraculous Toucans, too.

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Inadequate time travel really can mess up one's plans and planning.

But your title was already perfect 😉

Lovely to have a friend out that way. Hope you get to visit sometime. I know what you mean about the browns. Even after all these years in Melbourne, I still feel the joy of seeing rosellas and cockatoos, galahs and the like.

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Had to google Rosellas, absolutely outrageous 🌈

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Yes, they are stunners. As are lorikeets. 🦜

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Such a vivid and tangible snapshot into your experiences, Chloe, I could almost visualise you and David, "tiny worshippers, immersed in the breathing lungs of this sacred earth."

The daily acknowledgement of how fragile our life is, and the tensions that arise as we try and manage this: I find it allows me to celebrate the little things, now I can add to my routine to also "walk slowly and bow often." 💜

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Mya, thank you 💜 It’s a little counterintuitive, to think that acceptance of fragility can be empowering, but it is! It’s so worth it. And all the little things are so worth the bow 🌱

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Hello Chloe Hope

Beautifully expressed.... Is all I shall say, digging into my limited vocabulary.

(btw, I do bow down and speak to, like, tiiinnny flowers and critters, bryophyta...people think I'm mad...urbanites!)

Thank you for taking me to Mother Forest.

Warmest regards from London 🌌🧘

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PS : I shouldn't forget to extend a big thank you hug to my dear Jena Ball, for introducing / sharing Chloe Hope link...it would've taken me a looooong time to have reached it independently, if at all. Thank you my dear🌻🌺🏵️🌹💙🫂🫂🫂🧘🌌

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Hello, Mahesh, thank you so much for your kind words. I'm happy to hear that the tiny flowers, critters and Bryophyta are being well tended to by you! Thank you for coming to Mother Forest with me 🌱

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Dear Chloe,

Miraculously stumbled upon your piece.

And humbly, feel seen.

You are a gift.

With profound gratitude,

Rodrigo

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Rodrigo, thank you! I'm so happy this piece found its way to you, and that it saw you. Much gratitude from me to you, also.

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To spend even one day in a human body on this temple-earth is a gift. I appreciate the way you're able to articulate that truth in a way that's so honest and direct. And there is no better perspective than that of one who has seen a disproportionate amount of death, though you never flaunt the fact, Chloe. I'm grateful for spending most of my 20's as an ICU nurse for the same reason: a clarity about the simultaneous fragility and strength of the human body and soul. St. Mary Oliver would enjoy this piece. Thanks for writing it.

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Amen to that, Ann. Any time at all. I’d imagine that spending that much time in ICU, especially at that age, gave you a special way of understanding things (especially the big things). Thank you for your kindness. I sure hope she’d like it! 🙏

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Oh I remember the first time I saw a flamingo in the wild, just last year, while driving in Sicily. They stop there on their way north from Africa and then back. It was truly spectacular. I squealed, as I was on the side of the road and with my husband only. I couldn't contain it.

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Makes me so happy when I hear about people getting all excited over birds.

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Birds are so wonderful. I had a house in the woods a few years back and would watch both white and black cockatoos float across the sky. A marvel.

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I have such a soft spot for cockatoos, they seem like such characters. Very cool that you could see them in the wild.

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They make such a noise when they fly. It's actually a little disconcerting when they are all together because they are so elegant and then that sound they make!

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Ok! Yeah, I just went on YouTube to listen and...wow, that’s, quite the noise...

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You would think they would sound delightful but no!

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"David and I both consistently struggle with the incessant pull to abandon ship, to go and live far from the things of man." 🙏⭐💛

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Oh wow... Truly magical. Ooooooohhhhhh......

I always wanted to escape to Australia’s northern Daintree rainforest to become a hermit when I was young. It didn’t happen. And I like where I am in life now. But that’s because I found a way to get off the busy merry go round (by retiring) and found a peaceful little village where I feel safe but still connected. I’m a very lucky soul.

Hugs dear Chloe. A vivid, wonderful, inspiring read. Thanks so much.

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Wow, Beth, the Daintree Rainforest looks amazing! I can understand your daydreams of becoming a hermit there. So happy that you have found a peaceful place and peaceful way of being, while still feeling connected. You are lucky indeed, and most deserving. Hugs to you, my friend.

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Nov 18, 2023Liked by Chloe Hope

“…I contemplate the fact that I am not guaranteed the day. Being human is an implicitly fragile endeavour…”

The truth of your contemplation is almost unbearable to face. I find myself going back to re-read it. Not an act of denial of your words. More to cement it into my own brain .To deny it is to hold tight to the fear.

I close my eyes, take a deep breath and open them.

They’re now, all tucked in ,filed away. I know where to find it when it needs repeating (and it most definitely will ).

Acceptance equal to cleansing.

“Lose your mind and come to your senses.”

Press repeat.

Thank you Chloe, for graciously offering pure light spoon fed with a smile.

Oh , and thank you for taking me on a trip to the Costa Rican rain forest!

The Toucan! There are colors in it’s beak I’ve never seen before.

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Hi, Lor - thank you. That's some beautiful acceptance that you speak to. Thank you so much reading, and for accepting some of the light I hope to offer!

It's a miraculous thing, that beak...🌈

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Beautiful struggle between society and the remote life, between living and dying, between a civilized world which has begun to look more like a wild and dangerous jungle. I love this, Chloe.

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Diane, thank you! Thank you for seeing it.

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It’s lovely and I can see myself wanting to be in the jungle 2024💙

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I met those howler monkeys year ago - yeah lots of vocal rage coming out of those little body's... or maybe it's bodies... paragraph 8 is sobering. 🙏🏻 gracias

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Wonderful!

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Your interesting article hit a couple deep chords with me, jungle environment and death. Your hint the jungle is best viewed, as you saw it, behind the protective panes of glass.

I spent 2 years in the Borneo jungle, back when I was young and the jungle was still primitive, before logging and oil palm plantations. The nearest electricity and paved road were 50 miles distant.

It was beautiful and it still had pagan natives with longhouses, gongs, ghosts, and rice wine intoxication.

It also had snakes, (cobras and pythons), Leeches, (tree droppers and water born), flying insects with malaria carriers, hoards of mosquitoes, high humidity and ANTS, the biting/stinging types where you just got out of their way. I saw all these plus crocs and lizards.

I loved it all but wished I had panes of protective glass,.

After a couple months I rode my motorcycle 50 miles, stopped, and hugged an electric power pole.

As to death, we all know we are going to die, but few believe it. That’s how we get through each day, we lie to ourselves with immortality. Now 80, lying is harder but acceptance is easier. Oh I still fib day to day but twice I switched from knowing to believing. The first time was age 34, 2 doctors told me I was going to die. I believed them but was extremely angry, I wanted to draw more of my life’s portrait. A 3rd doctor suggested an alternate possibility that turned out good but I learned how much I did not want to die and it took a few years before I could successfully switch back to immortality.

When 71, I fell into a fire pit and again switched to believing I was going to die but there was no anger, just acceptance. Even in the hospital, when a doctor Ted me I might die, I was nonchalant , except dying at 72 sounded better than 71 on the obit.

Now 80, I think of death as the next big adventure into the unknown. Tomorrow, however, I will get up and live as if immortal.

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Jim, thank you so much for this. My beloved once spent some time in the Bornean jungle (living in a longhouse, no less!) it sounds incredible, but I'm not sure I have it in me, personally!

It's so interesting, what we learn about ourselves in precarious times. Not to mention the paradox of accepting death as the next adventure, while continuing to live as though immortal. We are wonderfully strange creatures!

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Death, the mystery all experience that puts the edge on our lives, God's greatest gift?

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It might just be..!

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This bit is just 👌 "but the appropriate response to my fragility is not control—it is humility. Mortality is deeply offensive to the ego..."

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