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Eye of the be-holder…

July 2, 2010


If you were in a room with a group of people and someone asked aloud “Everyone who agrees that beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, raise your arm”, would you?

Life tells me that 95% of people would agree.

Beauty is after all such a subjective thing, yes?  For some, fat is beautiful. For some thin. Black, white, skin colour, texture, smell…….. I can go on.  And on.

For  anything subjective, the same should be the case.

And what is this thing that colours our perception to make us see subjective things differently from one-another?

Well, in a word, culture. As you are acculturated, thus shall you respond to the world around you. If culture teaches you that tall is beautiful, then over many generations, that will be woven into the world-view of anyone entering and getting reared in it. I am of course speaking not of the exceptions but of the rule.

So, we react to the world around us after receiving inputs (touch/sound/taste/sight, smell) that are passed into us through unseen filters, some old/instinctive/natural and the rest culturally planted.

I’m speaking for two things here.

First, everything is subjective. Everything. All things are innately subjective and then subjective by acculturation. So, just like beauty, poverty too lies in the eye of the beholder. Whether something is a need or a want is subject to the subjective filter of the be-holder.  Cultural systems and their rightness or wrongness also lie in the eye of the beholder.

The net activity all our filters do is give us a sense of judgement. This is good, this is bad. This is tasty, that is yucky. This is beautiful, that is ugly.

To hone one’s judgement to move it to a place or “pure” objectivity has long been the holy grail of mystics and seekers. Beyond taste, not above it, Beyond beauty, not above or below it. If we all tried to be more objective, some might argue that all the colour will go out of life.

I’m not suggesting for a moment that everything should be measured.

I’m suggesting re-calibrating your inner scale.  If you reach a place of balance there, your balanced judgement will radiate out into the world. You will be known for your calm in the face of anything. You will be known as fair.

But judgement and acculturation are both terribly difficult to drop.

Second, diversity is a good thing. Instead of bringing all of ourselves to some common scale, we should all thrive on genuine diversity. Diversity, differences….these are the engines of life. Sameness is death in nature.

Accept differences.

Your life will be much the better for it. And if you don’t have enough around you, create it. Eat something bitter in an over-sweet world.

By the way, anyone taken on the Exercise? Not hearing much feedback. It is a magic key. In your hands. 🙂

And do look at trinity, ponder it’s significance and pass the word around?

We all mourn Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Let us get together and put the Original nuclear genie back in it’s lamp.

Be well.

One Comment leave one →
  1. bingaling permalink
    March 3, 2011 8:46 pm

    Great post . It is funny how maybe sometimes we are discouraged from finding truth because we are accultured to do so . The greatest people in history were often outcasts from their own societies or I could just say they were different.

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