Secret Passages, Waking Life

Nov 3rd, 2009 by adminadam in movies, prose, quotes

In my view one of the most freeing and individual human-centered takes on the development and potential of the mind was this dialogue from the movie Waking Life:


The main character is what you might call “the mind”.
It’s mastery, it’s capacity to represent.
Throughout history, attempts have been made…
to contain those experiences which happen at the edge of the limit…
where the mind is vulnerable.

But I think we are in a very significant moment in history.
Those moments, those what you might call liminal,
Limit, frontier, edge zone experiences…
are actually now becoming the norm.
These multiplicities and distinctions and differences…
that have given great difficulty to the old mind…
are actually through entering into their very essence,
tasting and feeling their uniqueness.

One might make a breakthrough to that common something…
that holds them together.
And so the main character is, to this new mind,
greater, greater mind.
A mind that yet is to be.
And when we are obviously entered into that mode,
you can see a radical subjectivity,
radical attunement to individuality, uniqueness to that which the mind is,
opens itself to a vast objectivity.
So the story is the story of the cosmos now.

The moment is not just a passing, empty nothing yet.
And this is in the way in which these secret passages happen.
Yes, it’s empty with such fullness…
that the great moment, the great life of the universe…
is pulsating in it.
And each one, each object, each place, each act…
Leaves a mark.
And that story is singular.
But, in fact, it’s story after story.

My Summation
| What does he mean to say? |
Can I say it less nebulously?
| Unlikely, but worth a shot… |
Here we go:

In the modern period our minds are freer, the sphere of mental activity much wider, while before the nail that stuck out got hammered down hard. We find we have more opportunities, more cognitive liberty nowadays; still we can get lost as individual exporers, but… Diversification is an effective strategy overall for humanity to break down previously invisible, previously unconsidered barriers.

So while individuals dig deep into an inner space, humanity as a whole proceeds to thin out the slabs of ignorance that have compressed and contained our minds for so long, like frenzied ants carving out new tunnels in an ever expanding hill.

In coming to know ourselves, digging our own tunnels, we are coming to know the cosmos all the better, that thing that connects us all. And despite the grandeur of our gradual enlightenment, the cosmos we know is but one, with a singular story, amongst many others — each with their own tales to tell. So unification is also a vital part of the story here…

Yes, I believe it means something very close to that…

1 Comment