Sunday, March 2, 2014

Sidewalk Art and The Cave: On Being a Child of Illusion


First, I need to confess something: I've been slipping in my preliminaries. A road trip and then being sick with the flu for 5 days threw my routine completely off. So the fact that this week's slogan has to do with meditation, or more specifically - postmeditation, means I'm feeling a little guilty.

Second, onto the slogan:
In post meditation, be a child of illusion. translates this slightly differently: "In daily life, be a child of illusion," and then goes on to explain:
"Carry the sense of all experience being a magical illusion into your daily life." (Source.)
This time,'s explanation gave me plenty of fodder, but to be safe I also consulted my new favorite, Tricycle. The piece about this slogan was interesting, as Tricycle pieces always are, but there was one part in particular that stood out to me:
"So rather than trying to make our world solid and predictable, and complaining when that is not the case, we could maintain the glimpses of the illusory nature of experience that arise in meditation practice, and touch in with that open illusory quality in the midst of our daily activities. That looser more open quality is the ground on which the compassionate actions of the bodhisattva can arise." (Source.)
After reading all of this and spending some time thinking about it (once I'd gotten over the guilt of not meditating regularly lately), the first thing that came to mind was sidewalk forced perspective chalk art illusions, like the one above. Anything with a forced perspective illusion, actually, even videos that make it look like water is moving against gravity.

While meditating, I try to let go of things by concentrating on my breath. I'm not good at keeping my mind blank, so my way of blanking things out is a kind of mental white noise. I'm not sure there is a transition from meditation to postmeditation, as the Tricycle piece suggested, but I know I can work on carrying the sense of illusion in my life. If nothing else, my being forced to read Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" when in college has given me a way to think about my daily experiences. I don't think I'll have a problem being a child of illusion.

Until the next time, namaste and all that.

No comments:

Post a Comment