As requested, this is an attempt at providing my world-view in as rudimental a manner as possible – enjoy or digress. Through the grace and magnificence of my parent’s love and guidance, this is how I’ve come to a certain understanding about the world.
“Reality is only a Rorschach ink-blot you know.” – Alan Watts
I sit upon the forest floor and listen. A slight breeze nudges my cheek. I hear the wind in the wiggle of leaves among the trees above. A spider runs across my bare foot, using it as a bridge to cross the uneven terrain beneath. A lone bird chirps in the distance – deep, slow and evidently undisturbed by everything around it. Here, all alone, I discover what it is that ties me to the world – what makes me feel one with it all. Amidst Mother Nature, I understand that I am to the cosmos as a wave is to the ocean, a blade of grass is to a forest or a neuron is to the brain. Besides the odd gusts of wind, the forest is a very quiet place – content with being and enchanting me in its serenity. Nature whispers through everything that is, doing so only when moved to do so. She is an old soul in an ancient body, wise, slow and always-in motion. In the whole, She is everything: every Sun, every planet, every animal, every plant and everything in-between. She works – and doesn’t work – in seeming harmony, only truly disturbed during the random events that alter the face of the entirety. She has no control over it; just like everything else that exists, She is at the mercy of her own being. I do not believe in Her; she simply is. Chaos equates to order, She is the balance that results and we the experience thereof.
I lie down and close my eyes. Within my mind I bring forth the idea to step into the realm of space – and I do. I sit cross-legged suspended in motion and in careful contemplation a hundred thousand miles from the Sun, watching the ball of white-fire burn. It’s eerily quiet here – just as in the rest of space, everything seems calm and distant, grandeur unlike any other. I put the cosmos in motion, expanding it from the centre, making the whole galaxy move outwards, faster-and-faster, the Sun pulling all the planets in orbit along for the ride, what an awesome experience this chaotic silence is – I dream of it often. I imagine myself to be our Sun, glaring down at earth, such a tiny dot in the distance. Home to every ruler, every creator and destroyer as well as every man, woman and child entangled in the planets endured eminence – every believer in intelligence that ever was and every freethinker that will forever be, all on this single smudge called Earth. I see a boy lying down in a forest, fast asleep amongst the trees. I wink at the boy to wake up – and he does.
A loud crack in the forest causes me to sit up. I listen closely – chainsaws. My kind is here. Here to tear down and claim as theirs. What a strange and funny divergence it becomes – we are part of Nature, yet some of us elect to be its end. Anything that is rare, beautiful or unique ends up becoming a tabletop trophy, to be admired in its now defunct state. The forest feels upset, even the insects have disappeared, the bird already silenced at the first sound of voices. This is what we have become; rulers of a planet – alien to our own home. We are hardly ever silent, bent on our loud and obnoxious attitudes, determined to be the alpha. The old, gifted with being slow and having senses dulled, are all who seem to appreciate the vibrancy of it all – they understand the simplicity of life, electing to be listeners and appreciative of their bond with everything around them. As though Nature prepares for their untimely death by forcing them to experience a certain oneness with it all, calling them to peace – and on to something different.
“The Universe is not required to be in harmony with human ambition.” – Carl Sagan
Back in my office chair, I look at the computer screen in front of me, square – just like everything else around me. Chairs, tables, rooms, buildings, cars, beds, floors, windows and nearly everything else manmade that I have come to know consists of simple shapes, words and numbers – very unlike the intricacy and beauty of the natural. Manmade aesthetics rarely impress me, it never seems to truly capture the equanimity of Nature; we resort to imitating it in a very crude manner, albeit an evolving one. It seems, wherever we think about anything, we make the idea of life difficult for ourselves – we deviate from what Nature experiences to something manmade. Our ‘complex’ brain evolved to handle the simple tasks of an animal surviving in the wild – only recently has it started to struggle with its quest for answers to questions previously unthinkable. Art – in all of its forms – is appealing because of its effortlessness in portraying connection; we dance, we play and we express. We lose the attachment with Nature the very moment we think about anything – we stop experiencing and instead dwell in thought. The soul identifies then, with the gap that results from this dilemma, acting as a middleman to try and reconnect us with Nature’s way-of-being. We ignore Natures whisper because we are selfish and we are selfish because we elect to ignore Her in the first place.
“So what is true for life itself is no less true for the Universe: knowing where you came from is no less important than knowing where you are going.” – Neil deGrasse Tyson
I look at the girl holding my hand and experience love. It is as real as I can muster anything to ever be. I don’t believe in it or feel it; I actively experience and understand it for what it is. Our relationship is analogous to that of a camera recording: every wonderful and awful experience we have ever had, all together on an ever-growing strip of film, stamped with the brail of the other four senses. I have a picture – or summation – of everything that she encompasses within my mind. I trust that she remains true to herself and in effect the amazing person that I experience; where she surprises me I marvel at the fun in it and enjoy the moment. The act that breaks the trust between us is one that burns the entire reel and everything it was, becoming an altered reality henceforth. So, we all go through life and experience each other, our reality shaped by what we understand about one another and the bewilderment of actively sharing it all. Humanity seeks understanding between itself, yet we break the remaining trust we have while doing it, bent on our ways to search for answers beyond ourselves instead of finding them within first. We understand Earth to be our only home yet we treat it like there are hundreds more. We understand the plight of all humanity yet kill and blame all too easily. We understand that those in power mock us with their antics, yet we keep resetting the idea of it all in hope of someone better taking up the task of leading. We are concerned with mediocre and questionably thoughtless acts, steadfast in what we believe instead of what we understand. We enjoy the act of complaining but mostly unwilling to take up the task of doing. We are human. We are the tear in Nature’s history, trying to entertain ourselves long enough not to take any responsibility for it all, content in diversion – placing it in the hands of the ‘greater’ – instead of trusting in ourselves.
“Our species needs, and deserves, a citizenry with minds wide awake and a basic understanding of how the world works.” – Carl Sagan
I find Science to be alone in its ability to carry on – regardless of our folly – through gloom and doom. It continues on its path of discovery, undisturbed by the adventures of those who do not understand it and who easily elect to take advantage of it. It is as balanced in its physical findings as possible, presenting opportunity and easing suffering regardless of ones personal vendettas or situation. Science benefits us all – most of the time unbeknownst and behind the scenes, as though it is the natural occurrence of our deviation from Nature to search for the wonderment in understanding our basic workings: discovering through questioning, where before we merely accepted. Science reveals what is and with it a deeper understanding of the connection we all share. In times past, the varying fields of Science were more concerned with serendipitous discoveries: a medicine worked for a particular ailment, resulting in a prescription for it, with the rest of its effect on the body being lost in the initial finding – a classic Human predicament, searching for perfection through making enough mistakes to make no more thereafter. As time progresses so we step beyond the simplicity of before; currently able to create life with the very smallest particles of matter, actively taking on the role of the intelligence we so eagerly seek within the night skies, all the while getting better at it each and every day. We are fundamentally explorers: a find or breakthrough becomes a tremendously pleasing experience, evident in our resolve to want to know more. I see Science as the natural evolution of mankind, evermore concerned with sustainability and the movement towards a reconnection with Nature, enjoying it while trying to be smart enough to preserve it. Science adapts to the new, with myself positioned in its wake – amongst millions more like me. Instead of dismissing instances where Science contradicts my world, I try to illuminate ways it could benefit our planet. The world is never against you, it plainly – is you.
“Let’s suppose you were able every night to dream any dream you wanted to dream, and that you could for example have the power within one night to dream 75 years of time, or any length of time you wanted to have. And you would naturally, as you began on this adventure of dreams, you would fulfill all your wishes. You would have every kind of pleasure you could conceive. And after several nights of 75 years of total pleasure each, you would say, “well, that was pretty great, but now let’s umm, lets have a surprise.” Let’s have a dream, which isn’t under control. Where something is going to happen to me that I don’t know what it’s going to be. And you would dig that and come out of that and say, “wow that was a close shave, wasn’t it?” And then you would get more and more adventurous and you would make further and further gambles as to what you would dream, and finally you would dream where you are now. You would dream the dream of living the life that you are actually living today.” – Alan Watts