Light and Darkness Defined

Is Darkness so Dark?

When we hear someone ask us to, 'Define Darkness' our first instinct is to think of all the bad stuff that goes on around us, this was not my first thought. The darkness brings a new world, a monochrome world, as beautiful in its way as the daylight world with all it's splendid colour.

Just pause a moment and think of what we would all miss if the world was constantly in daylight.

Has anything come to your mind?

Have you done thinking?

A sunset, the multitude of colours reaching out across the sky, defines the end of the day, without the dark there would be no need for the sunset, no need for us to take that pleasure of watching the sun disappear beyond the horizon, creating a stillness that a daylight hour can seldom achieve.

Darkness is now upon us, but is it really dark? up in the sky is the moon shining on the land below giving us the tonal shades of black to white, giving us the shadows that for some unknown reason we tend to fear. Is it the darkness that causes the fear or the not knowing?

The night or dark sky also holds the key to our fates or destinies [if you should believe] the stars give us clues to our own personalities defined by where they are positioned at the time of our birth.

Throughout history , the mariners have consulted the sky and the stars therin to direct them to their destinations and would have never discovered the wonders of the world, or would never have found their way home to tell about them.

The pyramids, constructed by the egyptians, were built in alignment with the stars.

Standing by a running stream , we can hear the water flowing across the rocks and over the falls. The moon is shining bright and glistens upon the flowing water giving a vision that you can never experience in the daylight.

Maybe you have, and maybe you haven't , seen the film 'Hobsons Choice' starring Charles Laughton. During the film Hobson [Charles Laughton] discovers the moon whilst under the influence, the darker side of the dark.

Beauty of the moon, Darkness of alchohol

Please watch the above video, in my opinion , it is brilliant , and if you ever get to see to see the film , you won't be disappointed.

Candles for romantic dinners, what place would they hold , if we lived in perpetual light. Candle light memorials , a symbol of solidarity , a time where grief and prayer are united, just wouldn't be the same in daylight.

Thomas Edison, What , I wonder, would his life have held for him, if the darkness hadn't inspired him to invent the lightbulb? Would he have invented something else, not quite as acclaimed , but would he?

Where would we be, What would we do?
Where would we be, What would we do?

It seems to me , that we all do our best thinking in the dark, If its daytime we close our eyes so as to eliminate any distraction , Our thoughts become more ordered and coherent in the dark.

Yes , I quite agree that there is another meaning to the term 'darkness' and I wholely empathize with those that still live their lives burdened with that emotion.  I have been there, travelled the long road , and come to the end.  Life now , is positive, I no longer dwell on the negatives and let me assure you and anyone still on that road , you will come to the end.

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Comments 48 comments

RKHenry profile image

RKHenry 7 years ago from Your neighborhood museum

Beautiful. Very well written. Positive insight.


goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 7 years ago from Free and running....

Nice thoughts on the subject, I watched the video, know plenty of drunks like that, never been in that state, but I avoid all those that have no problems getting there. I'm a natural night owl, no problems with the darkness

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thanks RK , thanks for the idea.

GT, I think it's a good idea to avoid the drunks, they just disturb the tranquility of the night.

Teresa McGurk profile image

Teresa McGurk 7 years ago from The Other Bangor

there's a poem by D. H. Lawrence "Barvarian Gentians" -- do you know it? where the dark purple flowers become torches of darkness, not light. I agree -- some darkness (not pitch black)(that was a pretty bad movie--Pitch Black, I mean) is beautiful. I love looking at the night sky and knowing there is SO MUCH we don't know.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

No Teresa haven't read that poem, will find it and do so. Thanks

maven101 profile image

maven101 7 years ago from Northern Arizona

Great question and Hub... I have to say, when I first read the question, I wanted to go into a personal reference to darkness, how it affects my psyche...then I thought, after reading all the prior comments, I would just be piling on with observations that are probably pretty much universal and across all cultures...Dark = Unknown, fear, loss of control. Then I remembered a poem I had read years ago by Matthew Arnold, a relatively unknown English poet from the 1800's. He wrote one of my favorite and most thoughtful poems called " Dover Beach "...Here is an excerpt:

Ah, love, let us be true To one another! for the world, which seems To lie before us like a land of dreams, So various, so beautiful so new, Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light, Nor certitude,

nor peace, nor help for pain; And we are here as on a darkling plain Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight

Where ignorant armies clash by night.

I have memorized this poem and use it to fill Kipling's " unforgiving minute ".

I always gain a new insight to his meanings of love, light, and of course, darkness....

Paper Moon profile image

Paper Moon 7 years ago from In the clouds

  As a child I was afraid of the dark.  I have now come to find the dark is my friend.  Like a cozy cloak to wrap around me.  The prospect of having seen something in the dark that you would never see in the light reminds me of a story far too long to post here.  Thank you for inspiring me!  :)

hilltrekker profile image

hilltrekker 7 years ago

A near reality & lovely hub.

Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 7 years ago from India

What would life be without its opposites? Light without darkness is like joy without need to experience one to understand the other. Lovely hub!

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Maven101, thank you so much for reading and leaving a comment, the poem you left is beautiful and I am going to find it and read all.

Paper moon, Thanks for reading, I am glad that this inspires you, an honour indeed.

hilltrekker, nice to see you, [still waiting for my tea]

Feline Prophet, they say opposites attract , don't they.

DarleneMarie profile image

DarleneMarie 7 years ago from USA

Beautifully written Hub Hawkesdream. Life is full of choices and we must focus on the positive to make it better.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

I quite agree,

Darlene Marie.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thanks badcompany, there is no greater honour than passing it on.

pgrundy 7 years ago

Beautiful. Thank you. I am working ona story in which the main character's name is D'arc (sic: dark). It's horribly cheesy but I figure, hey, so are 85% of the books already in print, so I soldier on. Lovely hub. :)

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Are you going to put your book on a hub, would love to read it, cheers for dopping in.

cindyvine profile image

cindyvine 7 years ago from Kyiv, Ukraine

I agree, dark is not synonomous with evil, but I guess that's what we've been conditioned to believe.

pgrundy 7 years ago

That's a good idea. It would be something different. If I did it in installments here maybe it would keep me going. I've tried three times to write a book--I always give up about page 75. I think it's because I don't have a plan, I just start writing. I think an outline is necessary. If you know how to write one and actually finish it, that would be a GREAT hub! Hey... I think I'll request that...

KStyle 7 years ago

Nicely done!  It is a fact that Creative people do some of their best work late at night, or in the wee hours of the morning while others are fast asleep. Great writing!

I look forward to more.


Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

How true is that Cindy.

Pgrundy, If you make the request, I'll try and answer it,and I am sure that others will too. You will soon have plenty of information and once you pick out the best bits, You're off.

KStyle, thanks for popping in ,pleased to meet you.

Aya_Hajime profile image

Aya_Hajime 7 years ago

In art you need both light and darkness. In fact, when I am sketching on paper, I am putting in the "darkness" so to speak; coloring in the shadows. The shadows then give the light definition.

I enjoyed your positive view of darkness.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thanks for dropping by, Aya, yes you are right, art is another expression for the dark world.

GeneriqueMedia profile image

GeneriqueMedia 7 years ago from Earth

Very well done. This does deserve to be a hubnugget, so congrats. =)

Man, RkHenry hit the goldmine when he put up this request. ;) But seriously, great Hub. Pix and a vid too. Awesome!

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Cheers Gen, thanks for popping in, your comment is much appreciated.

ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 7 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Hi Hawkesdream, I believe a person who can see the beauty of darkness can appreciate wholly the beauty of light. I know you are one such person. Thank you for this beautiful, beautiful hub!

Congratulations for making it into the hubnuggets list this week. YES! If you haven't visited Patty's hub and read all the mouthwatering feast of hubs to be this link:

Be sure to vote and ask all your family and friends to vote too. Congratulations again! :-)

RKHenry profile image

RKHenry 7 years ago from Your neighborhood museum

Hey Hawkesdream! Congrats! I told you this was a brillant answer!!! Good for you and "Yes" you got my vote. Good luck.

k@ri profile image

k@ri 7 years ago from Sunny Southern California

Wonderful explanation of the goodness of darkness! Without it's contrast, light would have no meaning.

G-Ma Johnson profile image

G-Ma Johnson 7 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

Well you have a new fan now...and is me...and a very nice view you seem to have about things also am glad for the hubnuggets cause I may not have read now to go vote and join your fan club..and welcome and nice to meet you my dear...G-Ma :O) Hugs

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Hi Ripplemaker, the bearer of good news, so pleased you popped in for a read.

RK you did indeed, I hope I have done you proud, thanks for the request.

K@ri, a pleasure as always, how are you doing?

Oh G-Ma, I have seen you on my travels through the hubs, hugging and supporting others, thank you so much for reading, nice to meet you too.

GeneriqueMedia profile image

GeneriqueMedia 7 years ago from Earth

Well done. =)

Though personally I would have tried to embed the videos directly onto the Hub. But that's just me. =)


Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

How would I do that, Gen? took me two months to suss this out, lol

socio-literature profile image

socio-literature 7 years ago from Ireland

The phenomenon of darkness is only momentry,the spark of illumination comes and darkness hides forever. it means darkness has no any permenant existance.only the light of truth will exist.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thank you for commenting, socio-literature, and thanks for reading. I do agree with you, though equally, the same can be said the other way. It does depend entirely on the viewpoint from which you stand.

Am I dead, yet? 7 years ago

I have to agree with you on the 'vice-verse' regarding light & darkness. without darkness, there is no light. Inspiring.

Whikat 7 years ago

I enjoyed your version of the darkness compared to personal emotional darkness. I also agree, I know that I do my best thinking in the dark, because of no distractions. I enjoyed your well written thoughts Hawkesdream. :-)

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thanks for your visit Whikat and for your compliment.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Cheers AmIdeadyet, for your supportive comment, It does prove emphatically that you,'Arenotdeadyet' lol

frogyfish profile image

frogyfish 7 years ago from Central United States of America

Great hub to read - and to think about later too. Thanks!

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Hi frogyfish, we havn't met yet, so, good to meet you and thanks for reading.

Jewels profile image

Jewels 7 years ago from Australia

There is a term I learned "Darkness Visible" from the Masonic tradition and is also mentioned in 'Paradise Lost.'  One of the meanings I derive from it is that you can see many things in a dark space. In an involuted state, or in meditation, this space Darkness Visible is 'a space' in itself.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thanks Jewels for your comment, I think that I will check out the'darkness visible, sounds very interesting.

RedElf profile image

RedElf 7 years ago from Canada

Milton had a more basic view of darkness, but I love the positives you draw out. Thanks for a great Hub.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Thanks for reading RedElf

7minnied profile image

7minnied 7 years ago from Lebanon MO

Great Hub..thanks for sharing. One of the things I like about the darkness here in the Ozarks of Missouri where I live, is that moment just when it begins to happen. We have many fire-flies, or lightening bugs, that come out. The flutter around and flash their little lights...twinkling all over the yard. At the suggestion of a friend, just recently, I sat out in my back yard just as darkness fell, and watched the fire-flies begin to show their 'light'.....and listened to the sounds of frogs and crickets, and felt the cool breeze of the evening blow through the yard. It was nice. Take some time to notice all that takes place once the sun begins to go down. It's amazing.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

i quite agree with you there 7minnied, it is such a special time, alas we do not have fireflies here,haha not that I have noticed anyway. Thanks for dropping in and saying hi.

cjcarter profile image

cjcarter 7 years ago


Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 7 years ago from Cornwall Author

Pleased that you were moved, cj

Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 6 years ago from East Coast, United States

Alison - a beautiful hub. Haven't visited you for awhile and I am so glad that I did. The movie clip got me going down a whole nother road, though. There was something so artistic and lovely about those old black and white movies. My grown kids are not at all fond of them, but when I see an old TV show or movie in black and white, my old heart just skips a bit because I know how it will be so much more special than color. After all, we see in color all the time.

Hawkesdream profile image

Hawkesdream 6 years ago from Cornwall Author

Hi Dolores,

I know what you mean about the b&w films and programmes.

Growing up all we had was a black and white tv, the colours were what our brain created. When my parents did get a colour tv I didnt even register until one day I commented on the colour of a ladies ballgown.

My parents laughed, Why? because the tv had been in the house for a whole week!

At the time, I felt really stupid, but it proves that we see what we want to see and not necessarily what is in front of us.

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