Hello – welcome to BigLittleSouls – a site for our times
I’m Jo Foley, a journalist, writer and editor who, for almost half a century, has been lucky enough to travel the world searching for stories, looking for luxury and enjoying adventures. From the icy wilderness of Antartica to the great desert plains of Mongolia via some of the most sybaritic resorts on the planet, I have stayed, supped and wondered. I have trekked in the Himalayan foothills, enjoyed the lavish lifestyle of Maharajahs and nabobs and lived with the Bushmen on the borders of Botswana.
Jobs don’t get much better!
For the last twenty or so years I have been reviewing spas, wellness retreats and health resorts and reported on how they changed bodies and attitudes alongside the eating habits and exercise regimes of their cash-rich, time-poor and over-stressed clients. From caring for the body, the wellness purveyors realised that wellbeing was more than just flesh and bones (and fat obviously), for the mind too, needed attention – mens sana in coporo sano – and began to introduce mindfulness and meditation programmes alongside pedicures and pilates.
And then we hit lockdown, or rather were hit by a pandemic – Covid 19 entered our lives and restricted and curtailed all we knew and all we could do. It forced us to look inwards to re-examine our lives, our views, ourselves and what was really important to us. It was during those first months I realised that we really needed to dig deep into ourselves to find the strength and resources to cope with what was happening, and while digging away many of us unearthed elements of ourselves we had forgotten or ignored, those bits of us that make up our essential essence, call it our spirit or even our soul. Another part of us that also needs attention and nurturing just as our mind and body does – a near forgotten part.
Indeed what is a soul? Do we really need one? Where do we get one if we haven’t one? Can you buy one? What happens if you lose it?
Do you need to believe in something to have a soul? How about music…food…journeys…sisters…brothers…they often come with a soul attached, as indeed do most of the major belief systems.
So I set out, while hanging onto my own, to discover what the global pandemic was doing to other spirits, souls and people and how it was affecting them. For sure as heck it was/is having an extraordinary effect on us all and in some cases quite a chilling one.
In his book The Virus in the Age of Madness that elegant warhorse, Bernard Henri Levy, assured us that while Covid may well have killed hundreds of thousands of bodies, it also killed hundreds of millions of souls.
So this is what this site is about…SOULS be they big, little, lost or found …it is about celebrating them, questioning their efficacy, denying them, talking about them, shouting about them and laughing too.
The site will celebrate and highlight such moments in the words of great poets as well as those who have spoken and written about their souls. It will also solicit the meaning of a soul from you as well as statesmen and women, church leaders, psychotherapists, doctors, lawyers, sailors, designers, the lost and the lonely.
So welcome to this platform for SOUL talk
Why not join the conversation…