Sunday, 27 January 2019

The here and now and the non-effort

Experiencing without trying to interpret is harder than I thought.
Interpretation relies on knowledge, which is your past. Memories of sensory knowledge, as well as the accumulation of all conceptualisations of our past experience into symbolic knowledge, reasoning, logical thinking.
Then there is the future -- our imagination, hopes, aspirations, fantasies about what's possible.
Experience of the present is when you manage to temporarily ignore both: pure experience without interpretation, explanations, or expectations.

Hard to achieve, as anybody who has tried and is honest enough will tell you.
Yet, ironically the Books tell you that there is nothing there to achieve, because intention negates the premise of non-expectation.
So, that leaves the only possibility that experience in the present just happens, without trying. That really goes against everything that we have ever been taught, practically since the day we were born, by our parents first, then school, then "society". Trying and striving is what our education is all about, and the rewards are obvious. I wouldn't be writing this from the comfort of my own house if that had not been the case.

I don't believe it is in our nature to simply exist, perhaps even just to fulfill a role in nature, like a plant. Our minds are much too complex for that. But then again, if we really are so complex to be capable of self-reflection, then it should be possible at least to understand some of what really goes on within our minds, and perhaps even to begin to control it.
Shouldn't that be part of our nature, too? (without having to try at all)

Newcastle, 2018