A Window is Where the Wall is Absent

The life impulse to express and to connect arises in me and in all of us. This blog is a celebration of these life impulses. Please feel free to join in the conversation or to just visit. There is a Family Photo Album beneath the posts so you can "meet" my family and I. Welcome!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Two way mirror

Reality is like a two way mirror:  looking through it one way everything is meaningless, through the other way, everything is meaning incarnate.


Gratitude for painting by Belgian painter Rene Magritte, titled "The False Mirror", 1928


Leslie said...

Uh-oh...I think I'm stuck smack right in the middle of both mirrors. :-O

nothingprofound said...

And both sides of the mirror reflect something which is absolutely true.

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Leslie,

I've spent a lot of time trying to find words that could tell me what the meaning of life is, and that seemed to amount to a lot of head banging. Then there was a sense that meaning is something very real- it is the reality of this moment. I gave up the hunt for a mental definition of meaning, and suddenly the smallest moment seemed to blossom with silent meaning.

You feel stuck in the middle of a two way mirror...what a view!

Leslie said...

Hi Colleen,
"I gave up the hunt for a mental definition of meaning, and suddenly the smallest moment seemed to blossom with silent meaning." It may be by default my mind is falling in to this present moment...the only place that offers no pain. Thank you for your kind words.

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi n.p.,

"Both sides of the mirror reflect something which is absolutely true."

Are the reflections equally true as well?

It seems the mind can tell a story of meaninglessness, and believe the story, and feel sad, bereft of motivation, an "energy crisis" of sorts when the "fuel" of meaning runs dry...

The mind can also tell stories of meaning that seem false, and believe those stories too- Hitler had a sense of being on a meaningful mission, but his sense of meaning was quite pathological.

Without meaning, without motivation, without purpose, without a raison d'etre, we humans seem to have trouble getting out of bed in the morning.

Silently feeling the beating of the heart in this moment is meaning enough.

Thank you for your comment n.p., and for the wealth of compact meaning in your wonderfully terse and cryptic aphorisms.

Triza said...

"Reality is like a two way mirror: looking through it one way everything is meaningless, through the other way, everything is meaning incarnate."
Coleen,what does this really mean...
Reality seen through two ways...
I have thought up explanations of why everything is the way it is.I am really beginning to feel more that these are just stories and my own conditioning based on my past.
To believe that this was what i thought myself to be and then not be so sure about it,or even wonder if i really know for certain my true identity puts me in a haze..
I guess deep down i am still searching for meaning.

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Triza,

I love your comments, and your deep looking for meaning.

I don't really know exactly what I meant in this post, the words just popped into my mind and hit a chord so I posted them. It is perhaps something like an intuition or a poetic statement.

Like you, I have thought up explanations of why everything is the way it is, I have sought meaning through explanations. While explanations can be helpful and have a kind of relative truth, in the end explanations and stories fall short of satisfying our deep yearning for meaning.

This isn't "bad", it just draws us to wake up out of the conceptual realm. Once I was driving down the highway and the setting sun was lighting up some rock cliffs by the road. Like thunder there was a clear knowing that those rocks were meaning itself, that every atom and the space it occurs in are meaningful of themselves. The "clay" that everything is made out of is meaning. Meaning is found in the vibrant presence of actuality, rather than in stories or theories or beliefs.

Douglas Harding gives a good sense of the two-way mirror metaphor. When we look out through the lens or filter of thought, we do not find what we most long for. But it's possible to do a 180 and look back into the nothingness that we're looking out of.

For me there is also meaning in the living connection I feel with you and with others.
Thanks so much for this conversation Triza.

Colleen Loehr said...

Hi Leslie,

Yes, in total presence in the now there is not the pain of being lost in past memories or future fears. I am glad you find yourself falling into the present...

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