Life involves much more than having many symbols (i.e., thoughts) about it. Many of us go through life looking at everything through a screen of symbols and images. We recognize things merely via these symbols and images (that we were taught). To look freshly — without all of these blasé, worn-out images — is to really live. Otherwise, one is merely looking through (and with) the old, dead known. Direct, youthful observation only takes place without the contaminated past interfering. Such observation is, in itself, alive and free.
Structured and “learned” observation is never really of freedom; it is never implicitly free. Many merely look via the ways and modes that they were “taught” to look. Little wonder, then, why so many become bored, weary, melancholy, and depressed. They are not looking with what is joyous, fresh, alive, and spontaneous; they are looking with what is old, stored, categorized, and of the past. The beauty of existence and life is in its spontaneity and “nowness”… not in a remembrance of what “was before.” Go beyond what all the pundits have taught you. Go beyond what you stored and accumulated. Leave the dead past and perceive freshly in the “now.”
The next time you see the beauty of an animal, or a face, (or a tree)… please do not merely look at it via labels, classified-learned patterns, formulated systems, and antiquated memories. Please do not merely look with a lot of that “learned space” that exists between the perceiver and what is being perceived. Without all that baggage, maybe (if you’re lucky) you’ll actually be in relationship with what is observed.
“Beyond Labels”… pic by Thomas Peace (Left click on the photo and scroll down to see it enlarged; left click on the “middle” of it again to enlarge it more; hit left return-arrows, twice, to return.)