Saturday, July 25, 2009

Perceptual Schematics


Everyone's favorite birdbath, outside the P & C Market by Lincoln Park.

I think we humans are dualistic in outlook for the simple reason that our physical design is about symmetry; two eyes, two ears, two hands, two feet. We have left and right lobes in our brains, left and right chambers in our hearts, two kidneys, two lungs, etc. We are physiologically almost symmetrical.

The world we live in is - in the coarsest sense - a strictly defined yin/yang environment of winter and summer, night and day. We oscillate, breathing in, then out, we sleep then wake up.

OK I know - what about spring? Fall? How about dawn and dusk? Trance states, the space between the breaths? What about dark matter? Where does THAT fit in with my simple schematic of the world as I perceive it? True, I'm being crude in looking at the world as a black and white place. Maybe I should say it's easier to think dualistically. Probably that's better said.

Because it's easier, I've always thought of paradox as a combination of opposites, but lately I'm thinking more holographically, that paradox contains not only the opposites but all the phases inbetween, that (for instance) Jake's death was the saddest event of my life so far, while also a tremendous relief, plus every other kind of emotion that falls between those extremes. The paradox of Jake's death (as well as its impact on me) would look more like Steven's fibronacci clouds than any depiction of half-empty, half-full. Holographic perception makes Jake's death more interesting. Since I'm grieving like crazy, it might as well be interesting, don't you think?

The parallel rites of passage occuring within my family soul become a lovely kaleidoscope when I think holographically. It's a design in which my great nephew's birth becomes elegantly entangled with the sadness of Jake's death, as well as with the death of my sister's cat, Hobbes.

Oh for heaven's sake, what am I talking about? I think the heat is getting to me. Time for a glass of iced tea and a break from my furrowed brow and tendency to overthink. Yes? Yes!


Dualistic me, dualistic flowers ... but where's Jake?

27 comments:

Reya Mellicker said...

Just noticed there are three of me in the last pic ... triplistic me? Whatever ...

Lynne said...

I always said we would for sure miss Jake in your great reflections pics. He was always there. For you, and for the pics.

You can come down anytime and just float with me in the pool. It's a great way to just give in and let everything go.

XXOO

Lynne said...

Uhm, I guess you would actually have to come "up" to visit me ...

See what the sun and water do to one's mind?
:)

steven said...

speaking of pools . . . the petals are like koi swimming across the shiny field enmeshed with three red-ribbon hatted reya's!!
i'm really intrigued by this wrestling of the dualism / holgraphic piece because i think that the either/or yin/yang is the surface of the holographic piece. kind of like the map compared to the place it describes.
i see the ebb and flow of life and death as something contained in a field of energy. so my dad flies away and his body and soul are enfolded and reemerge in his next incarnation as an unfolded coalescence of whatever and maybe whomever he needs to be next. it makes me feel better to think that way also. but that's all i can understand for myself for now. have a peaceful day. steven

Reya Mellicker said...

Thanks Steven. That actually helps me understand what the hell I was writing/thinking about this morning.

Just now, re-reading the post, I wondered if I was having some kind of hallucinogenic flashback when i wrote this post. I promise I wasn't smoking anything! Sheesh.

steven said...

i'm clean too reya!!! ha!!! sheesh!!

tut-tut said...

very thought provoking . . . Reya, have you read Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy? It's written for middle/high but there is so much there you might like.

The Bug said...

You've gone over my head - but I'm a literalist, sadly. I've tried to be other, but it's just not in me.

However, I LOVE the last picture - the beautiful flowers & the super-cool hat - reflected three times.

Reya Mellicker said...

Bug, I've gone over my own head. After I wrote this I took a cool shower and had some iced tea. Cooled my brain, thank God!

Deborah said...

one of my fave quotes is that there are two kinds of people in the world, those that see two kinds of people and those that don't--there is also the how many Buddhists does it take to screw in a light bulb? Two, one to screw it in and one not to not screw it in.

There are also heaven and earth, or heaven and hell, good and evil.

All I know for sure is that like your sky it is all shades and hues and tints, visible and invisible and three dimensional.

my whole heart and soul abides with you dear Reya

Nancy said...

I get what you are saying, I think. I have always said there is synchronicity in life and death. When my father lay dying at age 58, I would sit in the hospital room in between nursing my new baby. It was happy/sad, wonderful/horrible, etc. I think it is true of all things in our life, if we look closely.

Delwyn said...

Hi Reya

Steven grabbed the koi right out of my mind...


Some actions you can take
some things you can do
some things you can change, be,
some things you can think about
and some things just continue
to happen
beyond our knowing...

Thomas Moore


Happy days

Tom said...

I like when you go over my head, and i like the pretty flowers and especially i like the bonnet! Looks like a beautiful summer day.

Cynthia said...

What a concept holographic- kaleidoscopic thinking...wish I could do it! Color my brain with beauty! <3

willow said...

Your thoughts on life always make me stop and ponder. Nice pics. LOVE the hat!!

Ronda Laveen said...

Actually a profound observation and a break through, I think. This is where we, collectively, are moving. Beyond dualism. Beyond this plane. Yes, more and more beings are getting this information. Loved the comparison to Steven's clouds. The perfect visual.

karen said...

Oh, the reflection photos sans Jake... beautiful photos, though. Hope the iced tea helped!

lettuce said...

i don't know.... i think dualistic thinking is pretty endemic but i'm not sure its such a good thing sometimes

keep cool

A Cuban In London said...

You're quite right in your analysis of our duality as human beings. However unlike irrational animals our rational capacity gives us the power to turn those ying/yang moments into grey areas. That's why we have only one heart :-). There's only so much love we can give and take!

Greetings from London.

Phoenix said...

You have very interesting thoughts.. for some reason, I felt Cuban's comment above strikes a perfect balance with your post.

ellen abbott said...

We do tend to think in dualities but when does white become black, good become evil, love become hate. I tend to think of it as a circle as ones gradually fades into the other and then back again. All one whole.

ArtSparker said...

I think binary/dualistic thinking is a compromise - because sometimes (in survival situations) we have to choose, and because it makes reality manageable. The trick is to tolerate an ambiguous/inchoate reality when it only FEELS as if one has to choose.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Some great comments here... much deeper than what I am capable of gathering together. Your hat is stunning. Great words & photos as always. Have a great day.

John Hayes said...

It seems that the "space between" the dualities is where a lot of creation really exists. Have you ever read the words to the old ballad "Thomas Rhymer"--I've always thought about the "third road" in that poem as being descriptive of the poetic or creative path between the "narrow" road & the "broad" road. & yes, I think powerful emotional states like grief do contain an array of contradictory emotions. Great post (even if your brain was over-heated). Love both the pix, but esp. the birdbath.

Reya Mellicker said...

Artsparker, you're so smart!

John - Thomas the Rhymer? Read it, sung it, worked through it as a theme for one of the British witch camps when I was teaching with Reclaiming. That was one of the craziest camps, I'm sure due to the story. I, too, am a third road kind of person, which might be why I'm revising my dualistic tendencies.

Delwyn said...

Hi Reya
I am re-reading this post on Monday and have thought of two things. One that the yin and yang are the extremes on a continuum and therefore there is always valid middle ground, for example in gender. It is now known there are not just strictly male and female people, but other people who fit onto the continuum between those poles.

And what you are calling a paradox - the sad relief of Jake's death, I wonder if it is more of an oxymoron. A pairing of seemingly opposites...allows for a greater range of emotions and depth...

Happy days

Reya Mellicker said...

Thanks, Delwyn. I love the way you think.

There are definitely more than two genders. As a person who lived in San Francisco for 15 years, I can verify that based on personal experience. It's sad to try to cram everyone into only two categories.

Oxymoron? I'm going to think about that.