Friday, May 22, 2009

Art Gets Under My Skin



In a sensate intuition class long ago, I learned that my sensate "style" is to open up and take the world inside, to drink it in and then process what I've sensed at a very deep level. (Some people do the opposite; they perceive the world in an external way as if (as my teacher said) their eyes/ears/hands could extend away from their bodies on long stalks to touch whatever they were focused on.*

Not me, though. I take it all in. Sometimes that's great, sometimes not so much. Last night I watched The Reader and was knocked flat by its power and beauty and sadness. Kate Winslet is a truly great actress. Wow.

I'll get over it, of course. But I need to keep firmly in mind that happy films, especially as I get older and more sensitive, are a much better idea. Sheesh.

*To find out what your perceptual "style" is, stand quietly with your eyes closed for a minute or two. When you're calm, open your eyes and pretend you can extend them outwards from your body. Walk around the room and gently "touch" what you see. When you've had enough of that, close your eyes and become calm again. Then open your eyes and let the objects in the room come into you, pour in through your eyes. Which approach feels most familiar? Or maybe you combine techniques? It's fun ... harmless, too.

28 comments:

Lisa said...

yes, will give that a try !

Joanne said...

Hm, nice food for thought. I think I'm more selective, externally sensing the world here and there, then retreating to my home. Maybe there's a bit of caution going on there, too. Have a great Memorial Day Weekend, Reya!

ellen abbott said...

I don't know about me. I'm very visual, looking at all the details but then, I have to touch stuff too. Can't 'see' it complete if I can't feel it.

I refuse to watch sad movies. A big chunk of my life was sad and painful and I have no desire to resurrect those feelings.

California Girl said...

Good Morning Reya! I'm going to try that sensate exercise. Another blogger sent me a Tai Chi book she no longer uses. Just picked it up @ the PO yesterday. While away, my husband and I decided to change our nutritional approach and we're cutting back on red meat & chicken & wheat flour and alcohol and going for the olive oil, Omega 3 fish, heavy on the veggies & fruit and avocado approach. I'm open to all new things right and I understand what you're talking about.

deborah said...

this is great
i'll try it the moment i'm calm
which may be days from now

love you so

willow said...

Good! I needed another movie for my Netflix queue. Australia was a total waste. I couldn't even get 15 minutes into it. Love-love Kate Winslet!

And finally a car with a scuffy finish, like mine. ;^)

Poetikat said...

Off the top of my head, I would say without doing the exercise (I will try it out later) that I take it all into myself - absorb it, but mainly visually. This would explain why it continually comes into my mind at the oddest hours, when I least expect it.

Kat

Steve said...

That was an AMAZING movie, wasn't it? Kate Winslet is terrific in everything. She did a movie years ago called "Hideous Kinky" that's one of my favorites. Check it out.

Ronda Laveen said...

What Steve said, "Hideous Kinky," I loved it too!

Some movies stay with me for days before I truly can let the energy move through. I look forward to trying your interesting exercise.

mar azul said...

I do both. Fun.

I haven't seen the movie but one of my family doctor's sons is a teacher in Germany and uses Schlink's book with his students when discussing the Shoah and visiting the camps with them. He says the biggest problems for some of his students have to do with their own parents' ongoing denial or refusal to deal with the past.

Wishing you more pleasant experiences to take in over the weekend.

Kerry said...

If you don't like sad movies, you might still love The Reader; it is so very thoughtful and beautiful. The movie's website has some gorgeous shots that go well with the haunting music.
Oh, I tried the sensate exercise & was surprised to find myself a "take it all in" person. What are the majority of people?

Meri said...

I'm with you - I let it all pour in and then process. The class sounds interesting to me, probably because I tend to be clairsentient more than any other style. I get downloaded information that just comes to me and I also read people's energy to learn about them. And -- just to add to the evidence that the Great Mother has a sense of humor -- my word verification is "sencies." Are there coincidences?

Reya Mellicker said...

I, too, have to touch everything in order to really understand. Even my skin takes everything in at a deep level. For heaven's sake.

I don't know what the majority of people do, or if there are other ways to perceive - probably there are. It's a fun exercise, though.

Ellen I love your new pic!

I'm continuing to process The Reader as my day unfolds (I'm inbetween clients at the moment.)

I'm giving it an enthusiastic big two thumbs UP. It is a powerful film! Kate Winslet is a great actress and the story is amazing, with all its twists and turns.

Bee said...

I liked The Reader a lot; I wrote a review of it, in fact. Some reviewers complained that the Hanna was too likeable/too human . . . but I thought that was the power of the story, really.

Your perception exercise sounds so interesting, Reya.

lakeviewer said...

This is a new concept for me.

Reya Mellicker said...

I thought about Hanna's character all day today. It's like she had some slight autistic problem that rendered her unable to make ethical decisions in the usual way. She really was not capable of deciding whether or not it's OK to sleep with a boy half her age - or work at Auschwitz!

Winslet is brilliant in the role. Wow.

And now? AUSTRALIA!! Simple stupid and fun with pretty actors and actresses. Just right for a Friday night.

Sandra Leigh said...

Reya, that second photo is fascinating, but it makes me want to sneeze. That is pollen I'm seeing, isn't it? Here, we're wondering when the cottonwoods are going to start snowing. It should be any time now. The yellow pollen has nearly run its course, so it's time for the reinforcements.

I'm with Willow on "Australia". I just wandered off and read a book. Maybe if Kate Winslet had been in it....I am tempted to say that I would love any movie with Kate Winslet in it - but then, I did not love "Titanic" at all -

poietes said...

Reya,

I published a pretty lengthy post on "The Reader" a few weeks ago.

It is definitely one of those movies that seeps into your psyche and forces you to look beyond what you saw.

I think that Winslet is astonishing, and when I read a few reviews that were negative, I actually took it personally.

Here is the link:
http://poietes.wordpress.com/2009/05/05/what-we-feel-isnt-important-its-utterly-unimportant-the-only-question-is-what-we-do-from-the-reader/

poietes said...

Meant to say that I have always felt as though I were an empath, absorbing everything: touching, smelling, tasting and then feeling what needed to be felt.

Val said...

oh thanks Reya - i shall try that style test!
the Reader - I read it a while back and will look out for the movie. Kate Winslet is awesome.
x

Reya Mellicker said...

Yes Sandra, some pollen, but it's dirt at the bottom of the pic, reflected from a shiny car bumper.

The Chinese medicine (acupuncture and herb tea) is working really well for me this year. I've hardly had a sniffle. It's a miracle!

Reya Mellicker said...

Bee I did not find Hanna likeable. I kept thinking that a lot of people involved in the Holocaust and other hideous national atrocities must have retreated into "ethical autism" - just to get through it.

Auntie, aka Dog Girl said...

hey girl,
woah! you're stretching Jake there in that second photo.
BTW, I'll bet you practice some kind of meditation. The activity you described here takes a lot of concentration and discipline.
I drink too much coffee for that.

Reya Mellicker said...

True I meditate every morning and have for decades, literally. Don't know how I would get through the day without the practice.

Bee said...

Reya - Did you read the book? Because it is told from the young boy's point of view (and he never understands Hanna), the reader/viewer can't really understand her, either. Your theory of ethical autism is interesting. Her character was a strange mixture of insecurity and dutiful obedience . . . and some other piece that is hard to pin down.

Reya Mellicker said...

Bee I didn't read the book. Makes sense that it was told from his point of view. What a story! I'm still reverberating.

ArtSparker said...

I believe I understand what you're getting at - I remember luxuriating in melancholy more at a younger age. But I'm still not hanging a Monet waterlilies print in my apartment.

Reya Mellicker said...

Susan you are SO funny!