Friday, July 25, 2008
Doctors are using mirrors in such ingenious ways, "tricking" the brain into healing itself from all kinds of unimaginable conditions. For people who have phantom limb syndrome, a mirror box that makes it look like the patient has both limbs will convince the brain to stop sending pain signals. One woman who had an incurable itch was cured using mirrors.
When people are in a room that has mirrors on the walls, they behave better. Being self aware, even in a literal sense, leads to more mindfulness. It's not just the mirror-mirror-on-the-wall that's bringing up our awareness of self. Youtube is acting as a mirror for current culture. It's likely that people might behave more mindfully because they know the Big Brother of the 21st century is out there ready and available, a part of the programming of cell phones and cheap, portable cameras. Posting on Youtube is free. Remember the televised video beating of Rodney King? Watch yourselves out there, people!
What I'm wondering this morning is what I've been teaching my brain to do by looking into, photographing, and thinking about every reflective surface I can find. Convex, concave, or just distorted, I love reflected images. Always have. It is, to me, a parallel universe in which this reality is reversed, stretched and convoluted.
And I wonder why I tilt towards shamanism? I've been showing my brain how to do it all my life. For heaven's sake!