My brother Rex sent me a new copy of a book which I absolutely resonate with from the inner parts of my soul. It is called Pilgrim At Tinker Creek by Anne Dillard this is a first edition, which was first published in 1974. When I opened my new book yesterday here is the page that I turned to:
“When we lose our innocence–when we start feeling the weight of the atmosphere and learn that there’s death in the pot–we take leave of our senses. Only children can hear the song of the male house mouse. Only children keep their eyes open. The only thing they have got is sense; they have highly developed “input systems,” admitting data indiscriminately.”
I was immediately awakened when I read those words. I have said for a long time I want to see the world through the eyes of a child. I love the way Anne Dillard reminds me of this idea/wish of mine.
Here is another pov that came to my mind when I read her words, this is from What The Bleep Do We Know:
If the brain is processing
billion bits of information…and our awareness
is only on (fill in the blank)- that means reality’s happening
in the brain all the time.
It’s receiving that information,
and yet we haven’t integrated it.
The eyes are like the lens.
But the tape that’s really
seeing is the back of the brain.
It’s called the visual cortex.
It’s right back here. (touching back of head)
It’s like this camera
and its tape.
Did you know that the brain imprints
what it has the ability to see?
This is important.
This camera is seeing (the camera recording her speak)
a lot more around me…
than what is here…
because it is– has no objection
and no judgment
The only movie that’s playing
in the brain..is what we have
the ability to see.
So is it possible our eyes,
our cameras…see more than what our brain…has the ability
to consciously project?
Well, the way our brain is wired up..we only see what
we believe is possible.
“We only see what we believe is possible”, do you realize how important this is? When we dare to look through the eyes of a child we can somewhat understand how fabulous this realization is, yet most of us are too brainwashed, educated, molded and folded to get this. Children have these wonderful imaginary friends, that most folks make fun of and yet are these friends really imagined? What is imagination really?
Merium-Webster defines imagination as:
Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin imagination-, imaginatio, from imaginari
Date: 14th century
1 : the act or power of forming a mental image of something not present to the senses or never before wholly perceived in reality
2 a : creative ability b : ability to confront and deal with a problem : resourcefulness <use your imagination and get us out of here> c : the thinking or active mind : interest <stories that fired the imagination>
3 a : a creation of the mind; especially : an idealized or poetic creation b : fanciful or empty assumption
Number 1 says, “the act of forming a mental image of something not present to the senses”….but what if it is present to the senses? Makes you wonder does it not? It does me for sure, for I still have a vivid imagination, and considering I am almost 60 years old, blend that in with my experience here living with so much confused input data, it is difficult at times to distinguish the truth from false. I have this ability that goes like this, if I can think it, I can rationalize/justify it, and I can believe it. Whew? That is a hard task to overcome also. Maybe everyone can go there to one degree or another, because after all, we get mixed messages almost everyday. When we hear one thing, and then see another, how often do we stop believing in our own truth, we take it for granted the thing we hear is what we should believe, based upon some molded set of values that we have been “taught” to believe.
In the story Annie Dillard is telling, she is with a young girl who happens upon a caddisfly larva, that Annie says “she has wished to see all her adult life”. She goes on to say that the young girl was able to see this little bit of nature because of her fined tuned focus. It makes me wonder what else the little ones are seeing?
That idea took me back to the days when I used to hunt arrow heads with my family. We used to go out on Sunday afternoons and walk along the rows of freshly plowed dirt in search of the ever so coveted Indian Arrow Heads. I don’t really remember being able to focus with such fine detail either. I do recall picking many pieces of thin flint, strange shape of rock and probably other types of hard objects that were not arrow heads, I recall running to my dad, who I wanted to please in the worst way, and showing him my object to which he would say; no keep looking that is just a piece of glass or flint (or whatever it would be). I don’t know if this proves much of anything, or is really very significant at all, it is just a memory I have of looking through the eyes of a child. Actually to me it would say, that my eyes were not finely focused, or maybe that was it, I saw too much? Not able to focus on finding one object, as much a seeing too many objects.
That is how my life has unfolded, that is also how rules affected me in school. I heard a rule and immediately thought of inconsistencies. If the rule that was told me was not consistent, I always fought it. That has not been very helpful in my ablity to fit into a world of “living on life’s terms”. But during the many years of my persistent effort to run head on against the prevailing powers that be, I have hit my head on that proverbial brick wall many times.
One man’s creativity is another’s brain damage.
– Roland -Fischer