Monday, September 24, 2007

It's all relative

Have you noticed how the same thing can invoke two very different reactions and feelings in us. A cool breeze on a hot summer's day can feel heavenly but the same breeze when we are cold and don't have a shawl can be most wretched and unbearable. When we are sad everything seems ordinary, the most beautiful picture that may have moved us to tears of joy at other times can appear lackluster.

There are so many examples of this phenomenon happening, all of us have been through experiences that have at one time made us feel over the moon with joy and other times left us cold.

So maybe it's not the experience or the thing that is in itself sad or happy, pleasant or unpleasant, but us who embody those experiences with meaning. So these terms are relative to our moods and our inner states, to the time and space we are inhabiting at that moment.

A flower on its own is neither beautiful or non-beautiful it is a person who makes it beautiful.

P.S.: We move in circles - I had written something very similar to this in April - one of my first few posts. So my development is not linear it's spiral...round and round [that's not good]


Amel's Realm said...

Ah...interesting thoughts.

When it comes to going round and round, I think sometimes even though we've already thought of A, we can still grasp A in a deeper way...or from a different perspective (a wider perspective or just from a different angle)...for me, when it happens, it's satisfactory enough.

meleah rebeccah said...

hmmm.... I don't know why we all sometimes embrace things while other times we reject the very same thing.

Good question. Now I will be wondering that all day.

PS: I am always running in circles in my head too.

The Real Mother Hen said...

It's freezing this morning, the sky is blue the sun is up, yet the roof of my house and the car parked outside have this thick frost on them. I hate it.
But you know what, very soon, I'll love it. I go round and round too, despite I can't control the environment.

Mark said...

It is all realative. Comes back to our thoughts and perspective, which we all can control.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

Life does seem to go around in circles, Amber.

HollyGL said...

It reminds me of my favorite chapter in The Little Prince - the one where he meets the fox. To paraphrase, "Its the time you spent on your rose that made her special". ...and each person's reality in any given moment is really their perspective at that time, and the result of all that has shaped and colored that perspective.

Peter Haslam said...

Every time we return comes with a new perspective and so is always fresh

WaterLearner said...


An introspective post! Things are good or bad, beautful or ugly...when we call it so.

I am glad I found your good blog!

insanity-suits-me (Dawn) said...

I think it really does depend on how your feeling emotionally at the time. When you are experiencing happiness a flower appears very beautiful... but do you appreciate the beauty of that same flower at a funeral?
I think you are right... it's all relative.

the domestic minx said...

The circular movement is compelling isn't it.
I have spiralled into my own bottom on one too many occasions...

Ah yes, it is all relative and beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder.
We create our own reality.
It will be beautiful if I want it to be..


Choc Mint Girl @ Crystal said...

Interesting you brought up this subject. It’s natural. A simple situation but quite complex to our mind is when we could watch a movie crying and laughing at the same time...hating and loving it...yes, it goes around the circle...

Random Magus said...

amel's realm:
I know what you're saying - it's quite fascinating actually the number of ways in which we look at 'A' and how it changes over the time, adding new facets every time.

Meleah rebeccah:
I think it becomes an addiction - spinning around in circles.

the real mother hen:
You know I have done tiny experiments on myself with certain situations. I've dealt with the same thing with two different perspectives. It was quite interesting to see how much the brain can act like a spoilt brat and make things worse. The exact same thing can be dealt with in two opposite ways.

It is really difficult to remember that at times.

Jean-Luc Picard:
And yet we must escape the circle if we are to move forward.

You know 'The Little Prince' is one of my favourite books as well. It's just special!

Random Magus said...

Peter Haslam:
My problem is sticking to the perspective learnt...

Hey thanks for stopping by. If we could discipline our brain to listen to us, life really would be quite easy.

insanity-suits-me (Dawn):
The thermostat inside is what determines our reactions to everything around us.

the domestic minx:
It's a destructive high really - the endless spinning. I was waiting at the doctor's today, had a terrible headache, my turn wasn't coming but I decided that people watching would be fun. So waiting which usually makes me very irritable passed by quite easily and was actually entertaining.

Choc Mint Girl @ Crystal:
And even the same movie can illicit very different reactions depending on the time and our circumstances

QUASAR9 said...

"... at one time made us feel over the moon with joy and other times left us cold."
"So maybe it's not the experience or the thing that is in itself sad or happy, pleasant or unpleasant, but us who embody those experiences with meaning."
"So these terms are relative to our moods and our inner states, to the time and space we are inhabiting at that moment."

"P.S.: We move in circles - So my development is not linear it's spiral...round and round."

lol Random, a spiral is not quite the same as round & round, things can spiral up or spiral down, and time itself might feel like it goes round and round (on a clock face) but as we know it spiral thru space, never 'hanging' around

And we move along, continuity or repetitiveness just help us make sense of it all, whilsy at the same time we crave change and or the excitement of the unexpected or the unknown ... imagine if you had to take a walking tour of India never meeting the same person twice ... or you are a check-in girl at an airport dealing all day with people you'll most likely never see again - you'd be craving for the 'known' and/or the monotomy of home.

Speedcat Hollydale said...

I just whipped up a box of mac & cheese. I was starving - and it was fantastic!!!!
(man thoughts) :-)

Titania Starlight said...

I think we do these things because we are so human. I guess we have to ascend above what our sense assault us with and how our brain reacts to these events. Life is a lesson after lesson that we keep reliving . When you get one thing figured out there surely is another one to come along.

You are such a deep thinker. I understand where you are coming from. You are a wise young woman.

Keep asking the questions. Very few do or even care to ask them.


RubyShooZ said...

I agree that it comes down to how we perceive things indeed. I remember my grandmother looking out the window saying "It's a gloomy day!" and I'd look out the window and see not a cloud in the sky and sunshine - beautiful day!

I think we can widen the circles we tend to go in though.

I hope you're having a beautiful day. Peace, love and happiness.

~ RS ~

Random Magus said...

QUASAR9 said...
Lol Trust you to reveal a new perspective each time. Thank you!

Speedcat Hollydale:
I’m really hungry right now and my refrigerator has only fruits ☹

Titania Starlight:
Thank you. Our senses are quite a powerful and beguiling deceiver.

That is what is so interesting – how do our emotions color physical sensations. It’s intriguing

Blur Ting said...

You're back to your old self RM...thought provoking blog.

I often see how a same dress can look so sexy and glamourous on one woman, while looking so drab on another.

Same theory as what you're saying?

Random Magus said...

Blur ting: I have ha the same dress look differently on myself on two different occasions. And have you noticed how your hair looks the best just before going to sleep or after you have come back from somewhere?

Greg said...

This is like a parent watching a baby take its first steps. You are writing more and saying something slightly different here than in the other post. Come on, take another step, and join me on the dark side, the weather's fine.

Rambler said...

how true, I guess its all in the mind.. most of the times its just what we perceive than what we see

Random Magus said...

greg: It's slowly getting less hazy - not crystal still...

Rambler: What we perceive - what we feel. It's really up to us.

Bobby said...

Hi Amber. it is the cirle and the inherent movement of a circle that encompasses the most power of any shape.

Lets think of the circle as a spiral.
In the martial art of Aikido there are 3 shapes. The square, triangle and circle. The circle is by far the most powerful. I know this might be a completely off subject perspective but please indulge for a moment.

The square means confronting head on. Meeting force with force. The triangle means to deflect or parry the force.

The circle means to become the force. To become the opponent thus doubling the power as it spirals to finality. Much like whirlpool are the secrets of circularity hidden.

You are on a level of incredible intellect wherein all things cannot be explained logically.

Embrace the circle and become it's meaning. I hope this helps!

Greg said...

All things can be explained logically.

Bobby said...

I disagree Greg. When you apply logic in the art of Aikido, you miss the boat completely.

Somethings can only be felt. Sure you can come up a logical explanation, but the logical explanation will cloud the suchness of what is.

Only when we destroy all logic and forget it can we find enlightenment.

I am not saying you are wrong in any way, I am saying you might be misinterpreting what I meant.

Rolando said...

It's all relative depending on your experience, background, and conditioning.

I think this is what makes communicating so challenging some times. You see red and I see blue even though we're talking about the same balloon.

Greg said...

Bobby, the only boat you miss in Aikido when you apply logic is the illogical portions. I follow what you are saying; I have some personal background in the philosophy it comes from.

Your argument is similar to those who claim that an idea in one language can never be properly translated into another language. This is completely irrational. The only reasons this could seem true are because either:

1) The original idea was insubstantial, or it really didn't say anything of substance, i.e., nonsensical.

Or 2) The person translating the idea does not fully understand the idea.

Or 3) The person translating the idea does not fully understand the target language it is being translated into.

People often resort to metaphors to convey ideas because the logical explanation would be too long to explain properly. Unfortunately others confuse the metaphors for the actual message, or the truth if you prefer.

As an example, your mention of circles, squares, and triangles are arbitrary shapes that were selected to represent ideas. Is it just a coincidence that the most important shapes happen to be the most popular? We could easily substitute an oval, rhombus, and pentagon and maintain your point.

It is easy to sound like you have something to say by being mystical and obscure, but unless you can present a valid logical argument for your ideas, you really are just telling stories.

People have been doing this through the ages. Giving fantastic stories about why the Sun moves as it does, why the seasons change, or why we die. As we learn more about the universe and world we live it, we are able to dispense with the metaphor and provide logical understanding to why things work as they do.

I like telling stories. I wouldn't write if I didn't. But I recognize the difference between metaphor and premise. And I slightly modify my original statement to: All things real or valid can be explained logically.

Random Magus said...

You know I'm fascinated by Aikido. I am going to try to see if I can take some classes. Your post on the Dokas got me re-interested.

I think that of all things, this should be the most relative Greg. Shouldn't it?

It is relative [My God now I can't seem to stop using this word where once I refused it to such a degree]. To someone who does not believe in God, Darwin would be the most logical and to someone who does his theory of evolution will just not hold water.


Isn't it up to the person who is being explained something, to choose to believe in the veracity of the given logic? If my faith is strong in something, what appears to be logical to you would not be accepted by me. Right? I thought this was what was so great about relativity - it all boils down to me!

Greg said...

Random Magus, there are many forms of logic and they are all formal systems. Mathematics is actually a branch of logic. So it is very precise.

You seem to be using the more informal connotation of logic, meaning that something might make sense to you. My statement is that everything can be explained within a formal language of logic.

In regard to relativism, like all things, there are many variations. Wikipedia gives a good overview. My personal philosophy might be described as empirical relativism (with many other things mixed in). Observations are dependent on perspective and vary based on perspective. Reality is a relationship between entities which share similar perspectives.

Within each reality a formal language can be used to describe that reality that reconciles and explains the variations of observation and cognition. When you move away from formality, you move toward something like either metaphor or belief.

We could both be standing together in the middle of a road with a large truck heading in our direction. I might argue that a truck is going to hit us, and you might argue that I am wrong and that there is no such thing as a truck. Because we share a reality, we can find a common perspective to correct the differences in our perception or cognition.

Bobby said...

Greg, Go explain all that to a real Aikido master. Would you argue him down every time he taught you something?

I don't mean to take what you're saying in the wrong light but it seems like you always correct my comments here and point out why I'm wrong.

You need to study and practice Aikido for 30 years like I have and you'll see what I'm saying.

My comments are for Amber, not you:) Have a good day!!!