THE ART OF SEEING INTRODUCTION People think that they see, but they don t.
HENRY MOORE One sunny day in June, 2003, I go to the New York Botanic Garden to photograph r oses at the height of their bloom.. My challenge is to see the roses in a fresh way, a new w ay, different from the thousands of images of these lovely flowers that I had seen. I wear my digital camera with a macro or closeup lens attached. I walk through the Rockefeller Rose Garde n in a trance, relying on my forty years of photography to do the work. No-mind, a Zen concept and intuitive, reflex action informs my camera. I am very, very close to these bloss oms. A hidden world, the spirit and soul of the roses appeared. It is difficult to photograph at extreme close range. The slightest movement of the flower caused by wind, hand shake, or press ing the shutter button too hard, too soon or too late ruins the image. I dance around the rose garden, hypnotized and full of joy, out of my workaday mind. Back at my studio, after do wnloading the images to my computer and reviewing them in Adobe Photoshop, I am happily su rprised at the results. I stretched the envelope and was granted entry to a hidden world . I spend the entire week working with the images, revealing their inner beauty, enhancing the m, transforming them into images which speak to me of startling designs and hidden spiritual essences. The roses take on a new life for me, one of asymmetric beauty and cons tant revelations epiphanies.
Do you have to work for forty years as I did to learn to see beyond the apparent reality of the world? No, you only have to work at it much of the time, gradually peeling murky blinders of conformity and cliche from your eyes. Seeing is taken for granted. We all have e yes. You may believe that you see what I see. That is a false assumption. Everyone sees diffe rently. You see what you learn or have learned to see. Your brain processes visual information f rom your eye and shows you, based on your conditioning, what you will see. The liberated arti st s eye sees what isn t there. That sounds odd. "How can you see what isn t there?" Picasso once said, If only I could tear out my brain and use only my eyes. He knew and he saw and he wished to see more. The physiology of vision is still an enigma to many scientific researchers. The largest portion of your b rain is devoted to seeing. How can you learn to see the wonders of this world? You don t have to b e an artist to develop this skill. You can find your way back to the innocence of early chil dhood, when you saw the magic of creation less edited, less conditioned by your elders, your peers and your environment. Wordsworth, in his poem, Intimations of Immortality... wrote: There was a time when meadow, grove, and stream, The earth, and every common sight, To me did seem Appareled in celestial light, The glory and the freshness of a dream. It is not now as it hath been of your; Turn wheresoe'er I may, By night or day, The things which I have see I now can see not more. Wordsworth, of course, was bemoaning what he felt was loss of his ability to see with the pure innocence of childhood. As a poet, he saw with keen vision the beauty of hi s own world and revealed it in many poems. Still, he felt that as he grew older, something w as lacking which impelled him to write Intimations . It is a long and very beautiful spirit ual poem, often read during schooling. It speaks to an adult with a deeper meaning, for youth is blessed with boundless optimism and everything seems possible. How to gain back and retain th is vision throughout your life is the subject of this book.
'Genuine art, we say, has vision, and good poetry and good seeing quite literally go together almost always. Yet before the more literal seeing can liberate itself into that other vision we speak of, a transfiguration is needed: the eye must learn to abandon its long habit of useful serving and take up instead an active delight in its own ends.' JANE HIRSHFIELD : excerpt from Kingfishers Catching Fire: Seeing with Poetry's Eyes DO YOU SEE ANYTHING?
. holy light makes vision possible. Light. I celebrate the art of true vision. It has been said that light is the face of Go d and/or the mind of God. We will examine the strange phenomenon of many artist's works that do no t resemble the way we see the world. To truly see is to enhance one's life and make visible the hidden universe of wonders which surroun d us. delete and send certain amounts of information to various parts of the brain. Imagine! A ray of light from a galaxy billions of light years away is no older than when it left the star filled source! That light is an enigma even to current to science may surprise you. We will com e to understand that we can learn to truly see the world in all of its miraculous bea uty only after hard work and deep insights.
. We will observe the processes of seeing and creatin g our world vision. Your eye is a marvelous tool for recording and transmitting photons of light to your brain i n the form of electrical signals. as you approach the spee d of light. a series of computer like programs analyze. light is ageless. How that process works is a visit to a strange new land. Light behaves in strange ways.I beg your indulgence. Most of us were raised and taught that we see with our eyes. Light a nd its bizarre behavior is one of the great mysteries that still baffle physicists and mathemat icians. According to Einstein's Theory of Relativity. Light gives vision. which see and control our vision. And. Your eye does not see anymore than your computer thinks. Recent studies of how the eye and brain work together bring to light the uncanny fact that our it is our brains. It can be warped by gravity. the spirit of the earth. it can be a particle (photon) or a wave. The Art of Seeing will reveal how early conditioning and genetic inheritance determines how and what we see. for at the speed of light time stops. LIGHTWORKS Light is the source of all vision. It is the key to becoming one in heart and s pirit with the Gaena. not our eyes. Let there be light. as has been w ritten by scientists such as Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking. Th is is not widely understood.. Beginning at the retina. The Old Testament Bible begins (Genesis: 1) with And God said. censor. It cannot escape the event horizon of a black hole.
It has something beautiful to offer the human spirit. coined the phrase. as we more fully comprehend this relationship between creativity and our daily
. You often do not notice what appears in most of the image seen in the viewfinder. His talented. In the feudal days of Samurai warriors in Japan. We may stud y examples of traditional beauty such as flowers rearranged in a unusual way. ikebana has the power to change and add resonance to our increasingly sterile modern spaces.999. When you look through the eyepiece of a camera. practiced eye recognized those fleeting moments.Creation is the act of discovering something new. Hiroshi Teshigahara is a renowned Japanese film director and headmaster of the S ogetsu School of Ikebana. be it a person. an an imal. You will see this in the Japanese art of Ikebana or floral arrangement s. thus transforming them into more vital places. It was said that the outcome of the battle could be predicted by the success of his floral arrangement. A photographer learns to scan the entire frame in an instant to create an image. These arrangements often appear to teet er on the edge of falling apart. meaning the moment when the subject and its significance come together fo r a split second. you may not be aware that you ar e using your zoom eye to see. such as a great tree or a sculptural rock. Due to the character of its living material s. (Star Trek fans know that iable in six months in warp 9. one that take s us by surprise. It takes practice. You tend to focus on the main subject. a noble samur ai would make an ikebana before going into battle. a way that ca n enchant or intrigue us with its tension and beauty. The legendary photojournalist Henri Cartier-Bresson. The decis ive moment. Without the light of the mind. When the Japanese arrange flowers. we are rendered dumb and speechless. To create is to live.time slows down. )
crossing a galaxy or galaxies is negot
Without light.. or a significant part of a landscape. He made c ompositions in which all of the elements of the image related to each other in a striking or dynamic way. no life can exist. We must begin with training the eye to see what isn't there. To do this we must learn to see from both sides of our eye without moving our eyeball. Through applying this truth on a daily basis. In the preface to his elegiac picture book The Art of Ikebana . they often do so in an asymmetrical way.. Without the ability to see the light with child-like innocence. mundane activities can be imbued with new meaning. he writes: Ikebana can play a tremendous role in modern society. Bresson was able to do this in a fraction of a second. we l ose the greatest gift conferred on sapient beings.
It wrenches our mind's eye out of its complacent socket of sedentary see ing. and
. ikebana will become more and more interesting to us.lives. The presence of an exquisite asymmetrical composition of ikebana renews and refr eshes our vision.
The loveliness of the flowers is displayed in exquisite ha ndmade stoneware or ceramic vases. The German pre-romantic poet Novalis said. At present this realm certainly seems to us so dark
. We see the everyday beauty of flowers transformed an d our eyes are refreshed. . Chaos in a work of art shou ld shimmer through the veil of order. Renoir said that he went to the flower market early in the morning and bought the most beautiful flowers. It is what we are capable of uncovering in the seemingly commonplace everyday environment. he told Monet.makes us aware that vision is not just what we see. THE BACK OF THINGS Monet is said to have asked Renoir how he arranged his flowers in order to paint them. he would spend the morning arranging them. he would walk behind the arrangement and paint that view. Ikebana combines visual surprise with its appearance of seemingly teetering on a precipice of abstract arrangement. Learning t o see comes from taking one's self by surprise and absorbing the unfamiliar until the veil of mystery dissolves.. Finally content. The great French art deco poster artist Cassandre said that a poster must be a visual scandal in order to attract the at tention of viewers going on their daily rounds numb to everything but what is directly in f ront of them. Back at the studio.We dream of traveling through the universe -but is not the universe within ourselves? The depths of our spirit are unknown to us -the mysterious way leads inwards. Eternity with its worlds -the past and future -is in ourselves or nowhere. The external world is the world of shadows -it throws its shadow into the realm of light..
from 'Miscellaneous Observations'. glory in the earth glows and sheds its radiance over my life. How can we see through the veil o f order which imprisons us like caterpillars in a cocoon from which we will never emerge as shining butterflies? The search for beauty is the truest meaning of life. and the body of shadows has moved away. holy light which illuminates a dark world with our imaginings and our dreams. lonely. Without duendé he wrote. It is a pro cess that will never end. select and. generates the visual image in the brain. I do not speak of seeing only what is beautiful. It is only with the more recent discoveries about the visual brain that our concept of vision as a process has changed.but these new facts have only come to light in the past twenty five years. SEYMOUR ZEKI. The art of seeing relies heavily on the light which comes from our minds. Inner light. as a flower unfolds in the springtim e. Without the dark sid e. Gradually. We will experience greater enjoyment than ever. We learn to love ourselves which brings about love of others. the light with which we learn to view the world. shapeless. Until we gain the ability to see beauty in the simplest things. glory in the light. a process remarkably similar to what the artist does. Life itself is love and art. Inner Vision: An Exploration of Art and the Brain I endeavor to see more each day.. He tells of a gypsy w oman hearing a cello sonata by Bach being played and exclaiming. by comparing the selected information to its stored record . we cannot love in the highest meaning of the word . But how entirely different it will seem to us -when this gloom is past.." (Novalis. for our spirit has been deprived. the dark side of ar t. 1798) Light is supreme. "That really has due ndé
. in its quest for knowledge about the visual world. the flamenco lacks spiritual depth. discards.inside. We now view it as an active process in which the brain. The poet Lorca spoke of duendé . the beautiful might become too commonplace.
but taking action demands a true unders tanding of how we function in our materialistic society. I enhance. pines. relatives. and through space heaven knows how fast and far! JOHN MUIR
. I can think of nothing more beautiful than the shapes of nob le trees. patient. I vote for the life of trees. grand sculptur e that makes my heart sing. TREE LIFE I am a tree hugger.There is great beauty in the human countenance. It is sad that our vision is deprived of these great trees. at times. and for a wise compromise with our needs. It is well. transform or otherwise play with the trees in Adobe Photosho p to reveal what I believe to be their inner lives. W. hilarious or scandalous comment and suddenly see hi m or her again. redwoods. wise. and rarely see them clear. and though fast rooted they travel about as far as we do. friends. going and coming like ourselves. I grieve for their loss. but my own imagination running riot in their lofty. Many would agree. I photograph them (late fall. great oaks. I think the trees would be pleased at the attention. When I walk (dance) among the trees I see th em as anthropomorphic shapes. acquaintances. to ta ke a loved one by surprise with an outrageous. Can you see it? Can you see it i n the faces of old people graven with the erosion of time and circumstance? We live with people . traveling with us around the sun two million miles a day. ancient olives. They go wandering forth in all directions with every wind. benevolent. from the Caucasian Wingnut tree. It may not be the trees whose liv es I truly see. and beautiful. Our too often overly greedy society demands that we cu t down many old. They grip the ground as though they liked it. cypress and a hundred others. irreplaceable growths for profit. "I never saw a discontented tree. I take my n ickname C. winter. regal domains. or early spring are best fo r seeing the bare branches).
We ride these tempestuous seas hurled high into the sky by monster waves in a storm. a rainbow appears. It is our privileges because we are endowed with an appreciati on of useless beauty. Suddenly. just as with our own unconsci ous minds. and we see how beautiful it is. We are like captains on the bridges of ocean l iners calling out commands. We do not control this. but often little concerned with the complex and vast array of machiner y below that executes these commands. Over the sea itself. they have little or no control. Our co nscious brains control but little of what we do. NOBLE VISIONS
.We live on the surface of the earth and on the surface of our own beings.
how can it permeate the universe without a beginning?
. LIGHT'S GENESIS Where in the infinity of space and time does light come from? If indeed it is th e mind of God or the manifestation of His splendor. Hong Kong still baffles me. I saw them without truly penetrating beneath the surface. elephants and cheetahs. On safari in the Last Eden. My Great Wall and Forbidden City images are merely a breezy.There are visions which never leave my mind because I have not seen them yet. compelled me to try to see these things well. although I saw it clearly rather than with depth. and the pristine archipelagos and icebergs which spoke of time before man. That is a beginning. remembering Pablo Neruda's great po em. do not dig deep into the In ca ruin. the tall grass the and winding streams. I stood transfixed at Macchu Picchu. Maybe ne xt time. we can penetrate to the heart of things. to penetrate deep down into the myste ry and spiritual life of places and peoples. the Okovango Delta in Botswana. I remember the vast main temple at Angkor Wat in Cambodia. the green and turquoise waters there and in the Seychelles dazzled me. There is a need to learn to see and to work in a vertical as well as a horizontal way. over time. The Heights of MacchuI Picchu. A world roaming traveler skims the surface too much. The clarity of the light in Antarctica. The splendor of Moorea and Bora Bora in French Polynesia. My images while handsome. I recall flocks of birds. We can visi t beloved places over and over. Still. Around our familiar places. better to have looked harder. if professional look at these great works of antiquity.
We needn't answer questions of such metaphysical depth to see the light. The ver y term see the light bespeaks a seeing beyond what the eye itself sees. Consider the visual mystery of a black hole. Can a huge collapsed star of such density and gravity exist from whi ch light itself cannot escape? Stephen Hawking and many other physicists believe this is so. Is a black hole the wormhole(1) to other universes? Quantum physics speaks of fluctuations in the space-time continuum from which vi brations, waves or sub-atomic particles arise spontaneously, This implies a steady state u niverse, a universe which emerges at random.. To some, this seems better than the Big Bang theory of the universe exploding and expanding from a singularity, a point of infinite mas s, density, energy and gravity within which the laws of physics disappear. A singularity pro duces a paradox of infinite forces if observed or experienced. Thus, a singularity is pr evented from having a physical, or observable existence by the process of cosmic censorship. Stephen Hawking has said, in his writings, "the actual point of creation (of the univers e) lies outside the scope of presently known laws of physics," A black hole constructs an event horizon around its singularity. You cannot penetrate it to observe the singularity witho ut being destroyed. If there was a Big Bang, was there light in the singularity? If not, where did the light come from? One thing is clear in our framing of questions such as `How did the Universe get started?' is that the Universe was self-creating. This is not a statement on a `cause' behind the origin of the Universe, nor is it a statement on a lack of purpose or destiny. It is simpl y a statement that the Universe was emergent, that the actual of the Universe probably derived from a indeterminate sea of potentiality that we call the quantum vacuum, whose propert ies may always remain beyond our current understanding... The fact that the Universe exists should not be a surprise in the context of wha t we know about quantum physics. The uncertainty and unpredictability of the quantum world is manifested in the fact that whatever can happen, does happen (this is often called the principle of totalitarianism, that if a quantum mechanical process is not strictly forbidden, then it must occur). (excerpt from (zebu.uoregon.edu/~js/ast123/lectures/lec17.html) What has this to do with the art of seeing? Seeing is not a mechanical process t aking place between the eye and the brain, in which light waves or photons enter the lens of the pupil,
strike the retina, are transported to the visual cortex, and voila, vision emerg es. It is a complex process in which photons are converted into electrical impulses which the brain censors, deciphers and then decides what you and I see. I have not discovered from the ab ove light's origin. We will learn to see by shredding the veil of insubstantial conditioning and possible genetic inheritance which causes us to see what seemingly is there. Although thi s is a continuing mystery, light, the light of the visible spectrum, is our greatest jo y.
Where the world ceases to be the scene of our personal hopes and wishes . . . there we enter the realm of Art and Science. ALBERT EINSTEIN YOUR EYE IS NO WINDOW Light which enters our eyes through the pupils passes through a number of almost transparent layers to arrive at the retina. Since there is sharpness of vision only at the f ovea, a tiny central zone of the eye, The eyeball must constantly move, in order to bring an entire s cene into focus. We do this with a series of quick glances called saccades ( A rapid inter mittent eye movement, as that which occurs when the eyes fix on one point after another in t he visual field.) We are not conscious of this, and may imagine that we see everything sha rp. The myriad photons of light strike the rods and cones which are wired to a complex co mputer in the retina. Preliminary processing of the visual information takes place here. T he eye is no window! From the retina, the information goes on to a way station, the LGN (late ral geniculate nuclesu) where it is sent to the primary visual cortex, and on to oth er parts of the brain. Where, you may ask. Very little is known. The riddle of vision may be lik ened to that of early explorers arriving at the continent of Africa for the first time and ci rcumnavigating part of this vast land mass. The interior is dark and mysterious. Strangely, scientists find more information comes back to the LGN from various p arts of the brain than go from it to the brain. The actual process of seeing is performed by your brain rather than your eye. Here we are being told what to see, or are we? More likely our upbringing and our environment have mapped that which is important on our brains. Since it takes energy to see, why waste this energy in a battle within ourselves to un mask the outside world, to circumvent or overcome our early conditioning.? Let us waste thi s energy because not to see is to be blind to the real meaning of life on a beautiful pla net. Look again. How do you see what isn't there? What isn't there is the real world of wonder, chaos and beauty that you do not yet see. Start by educating your eye. We are su rrounded by
you must listen to a great rock b and. No matter you say. Are Dubuffet's grotesque paintings of people real. our dail y fare. I often walked the rock formations at Pebbly Beach now called Weston Bea ch. I describe this place more fully in my pictur e book. Light comes from within and without. Is that an impossib ility. A walk in a botanical garden. Is Van Gogh's Starry Night his true vision? Did Willem De Kooning see women like the tortured paintings he became famous for? What about Picasso often sticking e yes in his paintings anywhere but where they belong? He said that way people would notice t hem. Truly seeing comes from all owing the shimmering mantle of light which envelops the world to envelop you like a two wa y mirrorlike garment which reflects and transmits light at the same time. Images play music to my eyes. The same may be done nearer home. but in many. Try it. Why not visit online the virtual realms of museums or museums themselves. Much of it is the ordinary. California. First glance is onl y the beginning of the process of truly seeing. but be patient. It's like seeing what's there. a nature reserve which juts int o the ocean south of Carmel.images in our technological. or the host of books about artists of every period and see how artists and photographers view and have view ed our world. a symphony or a piece of ethnic music a number of times to really hear it.. POINT LOBOS My work is a kind of music. digital world. a forest or arou nd a lake
. THE SAMURAI WAY: Spiritual Journeys with a Warrior Photographer (Ruder Finn Press. Walk these rocks slowly. It is e asy to hear light music the first time. they were painters. How do you or I decode this music of the spheres? Come with me to Point Lobos. of shapes which mirror chimeras and gargoyles. your eyes will refresh themselves and begin to see what isn't there. J une 2004) . the ancient Carmelo and san dstone conglomerates. You may be a photographer or artist and record what is there or you may be trying to see your world. Not in one day or two. Dubuffet studied the works of ch ildren and mad people. like viewing a singularity? You are the mirror. or anything else you might fancy. on the outgoing tide early in the morning. You will learn to in terpret the ikebana-like arrangements of the rocks and uncover their distinctive personaliti es. hide a world of abstract art. and you will see a rainbow of colors on the rocks. As with music. The tilted slabs of many hued rocks on the ocean's edge.
. Annie Dillard discovered a universe at Tinker's Creek.leads to new visions.
each cell buzzing with flame. I saw the backyard cedar where the mourning doves roost charged and transfigured. Why. grass that was wholly fire. stop to notice a bee supping on a de w drenched golden cup? Why observe the unusual harmony of colors on sea drenched rocks on a storm swept coast? Why study cloud castles? Do we construct worlds of visual processin g all of us alike. of course. It was less like seeing than like being for the first time see n. I stood on the grass with the lights in it. but where's the ha rm.One day I was walking along Tinker Creek thinking of nothing at all and I saw the tree with the lights in it. while walkin g past a field of wild flowers early in the morning.
. A Pilgrim at Tinker's Creek WHAT DO YOU SEE? Vision is a process that produces from images of the external world a description that is useful to the viewer and not cluttered with irrelevant information. or do we humans have the ability to see beyond the constructs of early ch ildhood and later conditioning. utterly focused and utterly dreaming. Artists. knocked breathless by a powerful glance. Do we want to? It may be forbidden fruit. DAVID MARR. British neurologist Irrelevant to who? Your doting brain busily keeps you from seeing all of the irre levant information that makes the world a place of beauty and wonder.. Each of us has the power to see in ways that few human beings have learned to see.I had been my whole life a bell.. and never knew it until at that moment I was lifted and struck ANNIE DILLARD .
each area feeds into two or more areas higher in the hierarchy.. Brain. our intuitive mind. turning.. For each of these areas.The ascending connections presumably take the visual information from one region to the next for visual processing. see a great deal that is invisible to many others..
... Joseph Conrad wrote. The mind of man is capable of anything because everything is in it. Shall we not look deeper and study their marvelous construction? The art of nature is the source of all art. Eye. To see the b eauty and marvelous symmetry and asymmetry disguised or hidden in the twisting.. our problem is to find out how the information is processed. The knowledge we have now is really only the beginning of an effort to understand the physiological basis of perception. the human eye.. to penetrate the fog and miasma of lazy looki ng and wasted vision. casting cool shadows for us to linger under. and Vision The mystery of how vision works compels us to discover what we may truly learn t o see. the magical tool which worships the light. each of which maps the whole visual field. We all live near or in the midst of trees. a story whose next stages are just coming into view. all the past as well as all the future. arching into the sky. altogether delightful.beginning with the striate cortex..the striate cortex is just the first of over a dozen separate visual areas.We are far from understanding the perception of objects. All that is needed is the will to use the most powerful tool in our bodies. DAVID HUBEL .whether with brush or camera.. They are indeed lovely. p recariously hung branches of huge trees that stretch over us takes sudden awakening of our a ncient nomind..
. are beginning to harvest new clues to the origin and evolution of the universe's largest building blocks. bolstered by the largest ground-based telescopes around the world. the galaxies. It's a bi t like finding a family scrapbook containing snapshots that capture the lives of family members from infancy through adolescence to adulthood.ORIGINS Two of NASA's Great Observatories.
wrote i n his book Shadows of the Mind. We can see. Called the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey (GOODS). we can discover and see. That m eans the processes in the brain are virtually infinite and cannot ever be completely unde rstood because of the workings of quantum indeterminacy. We will abide so long as we increase our vision in ever expanding circles. prophets. the heat of life in the handful of dust. From a drop of dew on a blade of grass to vast ranges of glacier clad mountains. Roger Penrose. JOSEPH CONRAD It is too soon to quit. the glow in the heart that with every year grows dim. astronomers are studying galaxy formation and evolution over a wide range of distances and ages. from the heart of a flower to tempestuous seas that circle our planet. to vain effort to death. to soon before life itself. the earth. and expires and expires. The astonishing Hubble telescope opens a new window on our universe. and while thinking see. wandering eye. so ou r probing minds can discover and see the infinite variety of our whirling planet. and all men. We can illuminate our worl d as seers. We become visionaries. the eminent British mathematician." says Mauro Giavalisco. Just as the Hubble tel escope reveals the more of the cosmic tale of billions of galaxies in interstellar space. the triumphant conviction of strength. "This is the first time that the cosmic tale of how galaxies build themselves has been traced reliably to such early times in the universe's life.
. The u niverse within each of our brains contains more possible connections than the number of stars in all of the galaxies combined.Space Telescope has joined forces with the Chandra X-ray Observatory to survey a relatively broad swath of sky encompassing tens of thousands of galaxies stretching far back in time. shamans and magicians see in their myths and necromancy. Olympus. That's a miracle. and research astronomer at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore. We will increase our vision as we enlarge our cosmic curiosity which views all creation with a wondering. a gift from the gods . we are the st uff the stars are made of. too soon. head of the Hubble Space Telescope portion of the survey. the deceitful feeling that lures us on to joys. to love. I remember my youth and the feeling that will never come back any more the feeling that I could last for ever. that the human brain functions at the quantum level. becomes a s though we were gods on a high peak. grows small. We can as w ell open new windows in our brains to view the countless wonders of our own planet. as artists se e into the future. We have the unlimited potential to see what no one else has seen. We invented the gods. blobs of protoplasm which thinks. outlast the sea. like ripples in a cosm ic sea. We are more than crawlers on this earth. to acknowledge that there is an end to life and growth. Md. grows cold. to perils.
He paints not what he sees. what he tells himself about what he has seen.Painting is a blind man's profession. but what he feels. PABLO PICASSO
shackled by the bonds of daily routine.. while hov ering in a helicopter over a deeply crevassed glacier in the Darwin Mountains hard by the B eagle Channel in Patagonia. the mind lies fallow. She perceives what is yet unseen while looking into the world. Ripeness is all. At no age is the human mind limited.. a ble. Anoth er time. Sight and Sensibility. LAURA SEWALL .. It is only when.. to take the risk of leaping into true vision. ashore in the Galapagos Islands. here on this earth willy nilly. but perhaps unwilling.. the Psychology of Perception
.She sees that which is possible embedded in what is real bridging between seen and unseen realms. Once. filled with detritus of boring work.of what am I doing here ? . min d-set and fear. I saw them. We are too often like those albatross. They did not see me. used only to seeing what is there in our circumscribed world.LOOK WITHOUT FEAR We are here to learn.. clicking thei r yellow bills and dancing an ancient mating dance. with memory and imagination. I felt a chill of fear. as in Shakespeare's words from King Lear: We must endure our coming hither as our going hence. at whatever the cost. I walked among waved albatross courting.
Wherever he visited he studied the effects of sea and sky in every kind of weather. Instead of merely recording factually what he saw. he developed a painting technique all his own. Venice was the inspiration of some of Turner's finest work. like an alchemist's stone.. Turner translated scenes into a light-filled expression o f his own romantic feelings. He was to open the way for a visionary anticipation of modern painting. We can learn to see this way by dis carding our preconceptions and seeing as we fantasize. to the painters of his day. Tu rner saw what wasn't there. Such vision emerges from deep immersion into intuitive or Zen nomind. Turner studied the science of light and color. depicts the ravening energy of light which. Turner (1755-1851 saw and painted light.' A Londoner born and bred..TURNER S LIGHT J. With the years. His earl y training had been as a topographic draftsman.He was a unique artist. the flamboyant and miraculous play o f light on water and sky.
. The artist using his or her skill. however. transmutes all into glory and beauty. a world of rainbows and light. both in freeing himself from all past artist traditions and art movements. he went to the Royal Academy School of art when he was only 15 years old. he became known as 'the painter of light.W.M. Perhaps the most famous English Romantic landscape artist. These quotations from web pages on Turner (1775-1851) describe an artist paintin g during a period when painting generally dealt with landscapes in a traditional manner.
and pain. The act of observing a wave/particle at the quantum level raises the p robability of that wave being there. to the sense of mystery surrounding our lives: To our sense of pity and beauty. Whether light or energy. We will see. the collapse of the wave function. more permanently enduring. (Experiments in quantum physics hint or show that the observe r affects the observed. You might say that light from y our eyes creates your vision and that you can change that light by learning to truly see. he held the view. JOSEPH CONRAD .) We see what our brain instructs us to see. Magister scholarum of th e University of Oxford was a proponent of the view that theory should be compared with observ ation.e. that vision involves emanations from the eye to th e object perceived. these signals emanate from our eyes and condition what we see. i. the way station between the retina and the visual cortex. Does the light from my eyes influence what my cameras record? A scientist or phy siologist might laugh at this idea. He speaks to our capacity for delight and wonder.
. to that in us which is a gift and not an acquisition --and therefore. Current optical theory would disagree with this assertion.But the artist appeals to that part of our being which is not dependent on wisdom. however th ere is a great truth hidden here. I work with sophisticated visual tools. Robert Grosseteste (England). The Nigger of the Narcissus VISION EMANATES During the 13 th century. high end cameras that digitally record images of sce nes before me.. shared by the earlier Greeks. Our brains send messages to the LGN. The rainbow was conjectured to be a consequence of reflection and re fraction of sunlight by layers in a 'watery cloud.' Most importantly to our dissertation. Grosseteste considered that the properties of light have particular significance in natural philosophy.
Early in life.Nature and nature's laws lay hid in the night. ALEXANDER POPE Laws of science should not trap us into complacency about how we see. God said.. It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge. While light cannot escape from a black hole. Goethe phrased it this way.. The study of light has revealed mystery atop mystery. ALBERT EINSTEIN
. and so the eye is formed by the light for the light so that the inner light may meet the outer. Out of indifferent animal organs t he light produces an organ to correspond to itself. A black h ole is surrounded by the event horizon which is the limit beyond which even light cannot escape the ravening gravity of the hole. Only fear. In his book. rigidity or laziness can prevent u s from viewing and enjoying the works and wonders of all creation. author Arthur Zajonc writes.had light not seen man. we ourselves are not constra ined from violating our self-imposed limits. can we then learn to see the light? The eye/brain al liance is a kind of camera obscura. Newton's theories of light as corpuscles eventual ly gave way to Einstein and the enigma of light as both waves and particles (photons). t eachers and peers. our brains map the visual world according to our environments and from instructions received from our parents. Catching the Light . we should neve r have seen the light. a dark chamber which receives and emits light What form these light rays take inside our brains is equally dark and obscure. We have the keys to unlock t he box and dwell in radiance. Our own event horizons are the limits which ou r brains enforce to make us see what is already there.'The eye owes its existence to the light. Imagi ne that your brain behaves as a black hole is believed to do in interstellar space. Let Newton be" and all was light. If light sees us.'.
a blackness full of tears. chalice of the universe. one million light years from today. Time's fleet arrow speeds across a distant sea of stars out beyond the known universe. her carriage and her dreams. At five hundred feet over Lake Powell. I am filled with dreams still aborning. Michael whirls the aircraft around in a steep turn. Window open. the green meadows of the Needles and Chesler Park. Among them. oxygen deprivation at ten thousand feet. spires and obelisks arrayed like marble hat pins. The Cessna airplane bucks and slows. A red sky bands the horizon. her chariot. Row on row of silent sentinels striated with browns and yellows. the endless. sentient and universal realm o f mother earth. slightly dizzy reverie. one thousand feet above the fissured rocks. interwoven like an measureless Mobius strip. a bow-tie ribbon twined in the petrified red hair of the Colorado plateau. these tapers' burn in the orange light as in a cathedral where the devout light candles. Darkness. Michael lowers the landing gear. the wistful mote and the wise macrocosm. All is beautiful. I lean out to photograph Tower Butte framed by Wild Horse Mesa and the pinnacles round the "Crossing of the Fathers. Lake Powell's waters grow dark.WORLD ICONS Often I am asked what is my favorite place in the world. the magic light paints huge rock monoliths a deep shade of red. While photographing for my book of aerial photography Sacred Lands of the Southwest ." Fifteen minutes before sunset. We are one. The sun's bloody tomahawk cleaves the distant ridge. I am chief of the dusk. for sheer beauty of the landscape. Somnambulist of early evening. the high plateau regions of the southwest in America are unsurpassed. We know the same. I wrote the following: I awake from reverie. the reddening sky and the dark lake transfix me.. a vibrant breathing chalice of all that she has dreamed during an eternity of fecund and felicitous birthing. rapture of the deep or sky. The confluence of the Green and Colorado Rivers slides below. Our aircraft speeds ahead twixt Navajo Point and Navajo Mountain. Lake Powell glistens among black rock monoliths and crags. fire the camera and wave Michael the pilot on to Canyonlands. harbinger of tonight's full moon. riding my thunder stallion down the fading light. the desert blushing with harmony and music. During twenty-five year s of circling the globe I've encountered many enchanting scenes. a speck of protoplasm attached to earth's green bosom. Hozho!
. I lean out the open window to photograph the last light of evening on the waters beneath the sky glow that reaches across the heavens. hypnosis. To the right I see my companion Shirlee's favorite southwestern garden. sets full flaps down and throttles back. We feel the same. chasing the buffalo rocks down to cliff's edge.
Whirling and tumbling about. triggering reflex actions on the camera's shutter button.the word means something like harmony. evidence of crepuscular deities slumbering among the stone sepulchers. my instinctive. Big Indian . towers and rock cliffs rear out of the red desert sand. One instant more. I gesture towards the flaming rock mittens. whirring dervish suspended in thin air. Images flashed a cross my vision. I was in a trance during those aerial encounters. a glorious flight before the sun descends into the underworld. St. The Stagecoach. ourselves ghost dancers. Mitten crosses mitten. Loud is the propeller and louder still the hush of millenniums. spirits of ghost dancers awakening from the afterlife. intuitive training born of long years of practice. beauty and balance all wrapped in one concept that dwells at the heart of the Navajo world view" PAUL G.
. ZOLBROD . The earth tumbles beneath me. The ancient ones doze. no sign of Navajo or sheep. holy shadows on the desert.. ruins and monuments.Thirty minutes before sunset. Bear and the Rabbit. ephemeral.Hozhó. Michael banks and turns. only the silent ghost dance of shadows. Elmo's fire.. whirling the Cessna towards the great stone "Hands of the Great Spirit. spins the light plane into a dizzying descent around the Totem Pole and Yei Bi Chei rocks in Monument Valley.." the red rock mittens of Monument valley. a spinning. castles. and in the distance. Time. tiny red mounds. our acrobatic pilot of the Cessna 182RG (retractable gear). Dying shadows sink into the parched land. I lean out of the open window. Fiery embers glow on the horizon. Shirlee and I ride a winged metal spirit that dances in the shimmering yellow sunlight like a mayfly. shadowed by the sun's grim final burning. or the immolation of heathens by the friars of the Inquisition. hogans face east to greet each newborn sun ball trailing a red placenta of clouds. Spires. I see no life. Michael. The setting sun hangs like a burnt brass cymbal. What I saw was reveale d later in the developed film and it was good. I relied on no-mind to see for me. time that painstakingly sculpts wisdom and stone monuments weds necromancy's dark invocations to shadowy spirits. battlements. f lying low and close to the stone castles. We veer and turn. deep desert time. we fleet across the picket line of monuments The King on his Throne. Long shadows march across the red desert floor. Distant cliffs devour the sun shrouding the desert with scorched tears. a few minutes of epiphany.
ZOOM EYES A camera is a splendid tool to awaken and train the vision. To truly see through the camera viewfinder, you must look hard, all around the perimeter of the image. This is t he first step, seeing what the camera sees through whichever lens you use. Our zoom eyes coax us to see only that part of the image which is our subject, rather than studying the entir e frame. That is why too often, photographs taken on travels at home or abroad, are disappointing . We thought our friends or companion were tall in the image, yet the print shows them as tin y figures in an unresolved landscape, among majestic ruins, or a grand cityscape. Use your camera as you would a magnifying glass to examine the exterior that you try to capture. Study it until you really see it. No hurry! Otherwise your snapshot' wil l only reveal that you were careless and unseeing. The camera is a magical optical device whic h can, if used with passion and vision, reveal the unseen world, from the macroscopic imag e of dew on the petals of a rose to the sculptural nobility of a giant tree. The eye is no c amera. Our eyes, controlled by our brains, record what we should see, not what is there. Our eyes l ie to us. That is why eyewitnesses often disagree to what they see. Mood, emotion, stress, fear, anger or love all influence what we think we have seen. Vision is as infinite in its m any guises as the universe within our brains.
RICHER THAN EMPERORS OR KINGS ...all I produced before the age of seventy is not worth taking into account. At seventy-three I learned a little about the real structure of nature...at ninety I shall penetrate the mystery of things...and when I am a hundred and ten everything I do, be it a dot or a line, will be alive. I beg those who live as l ong as I to see if I keep my word. HOKUSAI , Wood block Artist, Japan, 1760-1849), ( The Manga , JAMES MICHNER) I acclaim these lines of Hokusai. He lived to eighty-nine in a time when that wa s very rare. It must have been sheer energy. He changed his name many times as well. His modesty about his work bespeaks an intense curiosity and desire to better know (see) his own w orld of Japan and to never be satisfied. That's a great way to live, to learn and to see. An a rtist, if he or she would accomplish much, must be curious and unending in the quest for new visions . Every one of us can attempt the same. A writer was once asked if he could imagine writ ing like Shakespeare. He answered that he used words as well. How they were used, just as how each of us uses our eyes is another matter. Nothing can stop us from seeing except th e tired habits of mundane or aborted curiosity and striving. The banquet of the world is always on the table. To see is to dine like a king o r emperor. In this age of onrushing technology and unlimited travel opportunities, we are rich er in opportunities than any rulers of the past. There is no need to fast in the midst of viands beyond imagining. The earth and the heavens flower for us daily. The night sky f illed with constellations is a feast for the eyes. I've stood on a ship's deck at night far out as sea, far forward away from all man made light, and gazed up at the Milky Way. I would shu dder and experience vertigo at the endless distances above me. I felt how fortunate to be able to comprehend a little of the wheel of our galaxy and the immensity of the universe . Better to drown in the search for knowledge than to languish on barren shores of disconten t and blindness.
HOW DO YOU SEE PEOPLE? In Ways of Seeing, author John Berger writes, The way we see things is affected b y what we know or what we believe...When in love, the sight of the beloved has a completen ess which no words and no embrace can match... We see people according to our own inner nee ds and conditioning. Lovers appear wreathed in splendor, caring, giving or passion. Par ents and relatives stir conflicting emotions. Celebrities of screen, music or politics ar e usually seen with a halo of power, riches and talent. Ordinary' people are merely glanced at o r ignored unless we know them or plan to try to meet them. To truly see people, we need to love and respect them. All human beings, whether celebrities or otherwise, wear masks. Lo ok in the mirror, then grin. If you would photograph someone you do not know, you must dro p your own mask to enable true seeing of the human being beneath. A smile goes a long w ay. In A Natural History of the Senses, author Diane Ackerman writes: We may pretend that beauty is only skin deep, but Aristotle was right when he observed the beauty is a far greater recommendation than any letter of introduction.'...After all, in fairy tales, the first stories most of us hear, t he heroes are handsome, the heroines are beautiful, and the wicked sots are ugly. Children learn implicitly that good people are beautiful and bad people are
feathers and straw. or appreciating minimalists or abstract painters. We cannot define beauty. we r ead that tradition has it that a young man seeks to learn to act as the woman Komachi. She tells him For Noh. time is needed. strangely. the expressions change. skulls. he must feel the thing as a whole. the staring. The heart is the form. the actor must bring the m ask to life. You are beautiful and that attracts the rich and powerful. The you ng man stared for a while. It is a Noh saying that. straight on. contemptuous looks sported by fashion models in ads these days. The appearance of people and things changes as we come to know them. always men. How can anyone spend their brief
. How a mask can change expression is demonstrated in a website (now gone) which s old exquisitely carved masks. Often. Alarmed. and depending on the lighting. in the street. Seen from above. I've forgotten who she is. sh e tells him it is bad for Noh. are less than beautiful. shells. we ar exquisitely carved male and female masks. To succeed. she asks why he is following her. No one is truly ugly unles s the ugliness emanates from inside. for the rich and powerful. I think so too.it can be a curse in a way for we need to be loved for who and what we truly are which. He is covered with medicine' objects. On hearing his reason.. from the inside. What is beautiful and what is ugly is in the eye of the beholder. As in developing a taste for ea ting oysters or grasshoppers. from the eye of the beholder. A young man fr om West Africa saw a five foot high power figure from Zaire in my dwelling studio which I call Spirit House. then said. That is very beautiful.. The appearance of beauty truly comes from within. but not as most we sterners might observe beauty. wears a horn on its head. is often the surface of things. or from the side or belo w. and society restates that message in many subtle ways as they grow older.ugly. In Japanese Noh plays. It arises from our own perception of the world just as everyone has their own measure of what art they like or hate. and he displays a gaping smile with only three front teeth. the actors.' FROM THE HEART I wrote the following to a lovely lady. He follows a fine old woman eighty years of age. In Ezra Pound and Ernest Fenollosa's book The Classic Noh Theatre of Japan. Those we love for their inner beauty appear more beautiful as time pas ses. a very difficult part to play.. an d watches her every move. And further on we read. the memories linger on.
wisdom and genius together Einstein once wrote. loving and not quite tame is a good motto. You write with the spirit and soul of an artist who has learned that to follow one's own bliss is the only way." So it is with art and the life of creating.
. I apply the word riskit to my name because I will risk and dare anything to find the truth in art sion. the music of the earth can bring great meaning and joy and open one's eyes to the splendor in the world.' Isn't that the way it is? Some t hings are too dear to keep alive except as smoldering embers. But you know that. To attract even one person to love is a great step forward. crane. She flies with those to whom the spiritual life is all important and love is the banner which flaunts desire and freedom. but I remember the wine. To travel. That is a real tragedy. We immerse ourselves in evolution's great journey to discover in that wisdom all we are and ever hope to be. It went like this. Material success is too often an impenetrable fortress and prison for the mind and soul. P. sensitivity. We cannot really teach those who will not hear or see. we change the future by living it and by creating. inspiration. kindness. Our art is the prese nt we freely bestow it on all the others who will share these things. our source and our inspiration. or feather spirits as in the Japanese Noh play about life being fulfilled with a good companion is exactly the
way that I think. To love. We celebrate the entire world bathed in holy light and filled with becoming.time on earth in the corporate world only grabbing for more money and things? Only the insubstantial. the deepest meaning and the challenge. or albatross we soar into the light and see what only a few can see. talent and a great spirit shall be as a bird that has left its cage. I've forgotten the place. A man says. Chambertin. those are the wines of life.S. to feel and be honest with ea ch other. therefore it is no illu our bonds with another are so light they are fairy spirits forth tenins. feel and love. Friendly. all the rest are details. All that you say and the truth in love. I have known it. My forgetting of the lady reminds me of an elegant wine steward on a ship who to ld us about a wine he recommends. A woman with integrity. the spiritual. to care. To keep aligh t the torches of wisdom. Free as an eagle. to converse is bliss. and seek to learn ever more about the mysteries of our confounding and delightful world. I went to the Einstein exhibit at the Natural History Museum this morning relativity. only those who inquire and learn can change. We are free when darting back and Hagoromo . "I want to know God's thoughts. I've forgotten the lady. imagination. the beautiful.
the kind that makes hydrogen bombs. light around me would still be speeding at it s normal 186. like the art of see ing. may be a more accurate description. mass increases.000 miles per second. The actual color is not seen. The waves and buckshot are like are photons of light which experiments have shown actually behave as though they wer e both waves and particles. this makes sense! The co smos is afire with light. According to Relativity theory. for we only see a small part of the spectrum of elect romagnetic waves of which light is a part. You cannot imagine light emanating from a frozen body in the blackness of space. You can see. a radiance which fills the universe. according to Einstein's theories. blazing stars. but an all pervasive glow. If you s ee a red box. reflected from every living or inanimate thing co lors which are not the color of the object or thing. You or I can never travel at the speed of light or anything approaching it. The real enigma is lig ht itself. That's easy. the speed of light remains constan t. no matter how fast an object or human travels relative to the speed of light. I cannot race a ray of light anymore than I can choose to swim with a wavelet among myriads fluttering in the sea.. as you approach the speed of light. It excites me that the medium of light. glowing gala xies. What do y ou see when you see familiar places? The heart of the matter is that we see the world indistinct ly. after much cogitating.. it is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. ALBERT EINSTEIN I find it very mysterious that. is so wrapped in conundrums and mystery. fire. At the speed of ligh t. however it is a though we imagined countless waves from the se a arrive along with a accompanying flurries of buckshot. it is really absorbing all the other colors and reflecting red. Rays of light fill the universe in a k ind of chaos of the visible and invisible. fuzzily. anything that burns although fusion. If I could travel at half the speed of light.
. not arrows of light going in special directions. Can you see the light contains more deep meanin g than it may seem. But of course. To add to the mystery.THE SPEED OF LIGHT The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious. time slows down! What is the light? Physicists seem happy to define it with formulas and the wave and photon idea. as anything travels close r to the speed of light. your mass would be infinite and that is impossible. Convenient. It appears to be the product of any kind of combustion.
We see what we ourselves absorb and process. The true nature of things remains a mystery.
Here. without drugs. without surgery. He and other researchers now believe the human brain can be extensively remodeled throughout the course of on e's life. and changes the w ay in which it operates. as when a child learns several languages easily. We can reroute visual paths through our brain which will enable us to see throug h the veils of conditioning and mind-set which hide. researcher Michael M. we are discussing the art of seeing. at any a ge. sets up new circuitry. we can learn to see what is n't there. Merzernich says.. disguise and distort much of the beauty an d wonder of
. It had been thought that these processes only happened at certain specific times. These findings are critical to helping overcome various disorders of brain funct ion including Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia.. adds neurons. however.A NEW BRAIN FOR EVERYONE The September 2003 special issue of Scientific American magazine was entitled Bet ter Brains. Merzenich noted. such as reading daily or cruising the Internet enhances its powers.a hardwired black box.. In the chapter The Mutable Brain. Among the most interesting themes is the new research which indicates that the brain constantly changes.which established its critic al functionality in critical periods. I'm for that.. If your brain and mine can change all through our lives. This applies especially to older men and women who often do little to protect their brains in these ways. Until recently. scientists thought that the brain was like a computer. proper diet and active use of the brain. The brain was constructed to change. It now appears that exercise.
Oh. repl ace lost brain cells. peer pressure and smug contentment to shroud the world from view.living on earth. Youth thinks it has forever. Can you imagine and joy in the favt that our very brains are programmable at any time in our lives. Later on. The Scientific American article ends with The sky's the limit. Brain cell loss is not the problem at any age. I take tri ps. grow new cells. A recent study shows that brain cell loss ho lds steady with aging. It is easy to travel lugging the baggage of one's preconceptions like an old rug or comforter.
. As we age. and use only a small portion. Scientists now. many will say. the maturing adult takes what he or she sees for granted. however we have more than we n eed at all ages. a nd we are trying to figure out the rules. as the real world. marvelously claim that we have the ability to change our brains. Only oc casionally does the middle-aged adult venture forth into the wide world of vision. our ways of thinking. that we can grow new neurons. add circuits. That is a gift from the gods. we lose brain cells constantly. reroute the pathways around the brain. overweening curiosity about this earth. What is often the problem is lack of a passionate. worn but homelike. and allows atrophy.
another hundred took flight. When I see this way I sway transfixed and emptied. Within minutes flares of light. not sit on the sidelines.' That begs the question. since it means that only the simplest anim als perceive the universe as it is. We. Dark thunder clouds roil and tumble high into the dawn light. in A Pilgrim at Tinker Creek writes of vision in a chapter called Seeing. God's rays. I remember dawn breaking over dark seas as I flew out over the Caribbean in a helicopter. editing it for my brain. The bi rds were weightless as well as invisible. Silver sheen burnishes their lofty edges as the sun begins to emerge far below. and only if. when suddenly a hundred red-winged blackbirds flew out of the tr ee. Annie says there is another kind of seeing that involves a letting go. I live for these moments. When I se e this way I am above all an unscrupulous observer.SEEING IS NOT A SPECTATOR SPORT Annie Dillard. When I walk with a camera. pointing out that the s ense impressions of one-celled animals are not edited for their brain: This is philoso phically interesting in a rather mournful way. says Donald Carr. She mentions walking toward an Osage orange tree which did not appear unusual. my own shutter opens. As she walked closer. waiting to be seen. What she or we can see is all there as well. I could as easily reverse that statement a nd say that
. like the blush of opening r oses. . She says that she cannot see what a specialist such as a stone collector or a scient ist who puts drops of seawater under a microscope sees. for the simplest animals have no way to interpret what t hey see in a conscious way. charged and firing without my knowledge. When I walk without a camera. above mountaintops or on the land. At such times. The sky is afire. we learn to see. can interpret if. I add that you must practice seeing. giant luminou s ladders. The two difference between the two ways of seeing i s the difference between walking with and without a camera. the sky lights up slowly. Not a branch or a twig budged. I walk from shot to shot reading the light on a calibrated meter. whether at sea. Out over the sea. on the other side of the spectrum. She says that it's a matter of keeping one's eye s open. A nightmare network of ganglia. straddle the seas and rise into the heavens. Agreed. and the moment's light prints on my own silver gut. I see a red ball dimly appear through the dawn mist. cuts and splices what I do see.
content? Annie is impartial. Isn't seeing more than a matter of metaphor. Instant flashes of lig ht imprint themselves on my camera's sensor because my no-mind sees them like lightning bol ts flaring across a western desert on a moonless night. disheveled. views islands hidde n in grey mists. epiphanies and endless wonder. it's rapture. I hope this phenomenal gift will be or is already with you. Annie says it is possible in deep space to sail on a solar wind. churns green and white in a tempest. props up rainbows. The mead of the Gods tastes sweet. Hone and spread your spirit till you yourself are a sail...when I walk with a camera. An endlessly inquiring and insightful mi nd is as restless as the shimmering mirror of the sea reflecting scudding cloud castles. We see what we see. broadside to the merest puff. exhausted. What a camera s ees depends on the mind. heart. rapt. translucent. The secret of seeing is to sail on a solar wind. a brilliant ob server who transforms daily visions into fragrant. soul and passion behind the lens. Your eager and inquisitive primal eye. it sees everything. my own shutter is always open. sumptuous paragraphs which taste like vi sion. and vision is sweeter than wine.. smell
. the eye which lurks inside your eye. whett ed. of wri ting and thinking of what you see? Isn't it an almost orgasmic like delight of suddenly b eing jolted into vision. glows pink and re d in the dawn. With or without a camera. Burning like desire.
it pours out a balm upon a troubled world. sound and feel like vision. and truth. ALBERT EINSTEIN A see-er or seer cannot be too comfortable. To see is to understand the powerful currents that rage across the seas and continents of the earth dreadful visions of war and genoc ide. Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. radio and the Internet. You've read it ? Read it again! I will.. De ep in the
. The ideals which have always shone before me and filled me with the joy of living are goodness. You and I are deeply troubled and moved by these thi ngs. And she has a sense of humor. the sco urge of disease endless travails which human beings have endured since the dawn of history .like vision. What is v ision. Can an artist or new vision make the world a better place? Art comes from truly seeing. ravages of floods and eruptions. tv. a system of ethics built on this basis would be sufficient only for a herd of cattle.. beauty. love or art without a sense of humor? Read A Pilgrim at Tinker Creek . s aid Eleanor Roosevelt. Such spectacles mercilessly invade our vision through the roar and outpourings from n ewspapers. the slaughter of millions of innocents. To make a goal of comfort or happiness has never appealed to me. The candles lit by art burn brighter than the explosions of stars. BETTER TO LIGHT A CANDLE. life.
I exhausted the subject for the moment. 2003. I used my macro lens and diffused strobe flash. What we know of evil we cannot ever lightly accept. We walked to an exhibition in the Glyndor Gallery located inside a red brick house. I took photographs of the installations in a somewhat shak en manner. lighthouses or blazing ca ndelabra which illuminate some small part of the darkness. There is a dark side to art. Dodging the sprinklers in the garden in front of the conse rvatory. passion. an estate and garden i n the Bronx open to the public. I expected to see the ikebana I loved. I never even noticed a giant expl osion of shrubbery attached behind the rear porch.playground of myths which inhabit our minds. I tried to peer deep into the flowers. That was fine. Soon. He pointed to the rooms and said th at was the contemporary ikebana. understanding and de sire inflame our souls. SIGHT UNSEEN MYSTERIOUS IKEBANA On July 6. I could not yet see these things as ikebana. flowers arranged asymmetrically in vases. You and I are those fiery furnaces. They were too large. Now an then you need a good blow
. from my love of delicate ikebana arrangements. without shadows we could not comprehend the light. What I saw when I walked inside took me by surprise and puzzled me. love. just as there is a dark side to all of human nature. However. I went equipped with my Canon digital cameras to see and rec ord the life of the flowers there. It was called Perfection/Impermanence: Contemp orary Ikebana. to different fro m my mind set. I walked up to the man at the de sk and asked him where the ikebana was to be found. I went with a friend to visit Wave Hill. There were r oom size installations of various natural and inorganic materials which bore no resemblan ce to the ceramic vases holding the ikebana I have known.
to live. I went to Wave Hill to see flower gardens. ikasu to put in the best light. To arrange. to arrive at one's essence. Annie said tha t without her camera she was an unscrupulous observer. the unheard clash of galaxies devouring each other in th e blackness of space. to see in the best light. that heralds true seeing. I saw little. a form of arrangement that is released from the confines of the vase.. but first I have to constantly see anew. ikiru to live. the roar and splash of icebergs calving. said this in part abou t the exhibit: Ikebana comes from a long tradition that celebrates life and respects plants as living. The Wave Hill site on the internet: wavehill. I saw a new variation of a loved theme. use of living plants. and encourages free expression and often takes the form of large-scale installations . and the concept of time or the transience of living matter are all components of Ikebana. It employs natural and inorganic materials. I see the ragi ng drama of great storms at sea. The origins of the word stem from three verbs: ikeru to place or arrange. At Wave Hill. to arrive at one's essence. I see with my camer a. she saw everything. yet I didn't see it. That provokes me to see it again until I see it. in those incredulous first moments. the artists'' own creative process and energy. When I view quiet asymmetrical arrangements of traditional ikebana. ikebana. certainly. not enough. Arrangement. the silence of dewdrops on wild flowers in the mist.along the side of the head to wake you up from smugness or complacency. The practice requires a disciplined training in which the artist strives to create perfection and impermanence in each installation or display. breathing things.org. Progressive Japanese flower artists have developed Contemporary Ikebana. relationship to a space. What will I see when I learn to see the new contemporary ikebana?
. to be alive. I write about seeing and I just realized that I didn't see anything at first at the exhibit an d.
soe'' -representing heaven ( yoh ). The artistic expression of ikebana originated in Buddhist alter decorations honoring the dead . the broken. shattered. Floral arrangements are part of the Zen aesthetics of the tea ceremony.. the energy force of life towards the future. We have here another interpretation of the meaning of ikebana.with lightning like zigzags made of disposable chopsticks d oweled together with toothpicks. In Japanese Shint o religion. I care only to see. and tai'' -representing earth ( in) . To disc over a universe in a pot of flowers seems odd.ramalila. to probe and to understand what makes this reeling globe a fantasy and a kaleidoscope of epiphanies. My own art of image making feeds on this Japanese art. the gods (kami) can be present in any outstanding natural object or phenomenon.There is more to ikebana. SENEI IKENOBO The Japanese believe Ikebana speaks directly to the heart of the creator and the viewer. There are generally three principal parts to the Ikebana arrangement: shin'' -the main stem representing man ( yoh). and the harmony therein. for instance. Typically it is site specific. The flower bud contains. It is only through the asymmetric re-arrangement of dull order. A younger ikebana-trained artist. It is sculpture that breathes and expresses stability and the spirit of Nature. Janet Koplos in her booklet about the exhibition Perfection/Impermanence writes. Contemporary or installation type ikebana deviates greatly from the origin al form of flowers arranged in a vase. The following came from the web site www. sight and true vision. Ohtsubo once filled a room. An ikebana plac ed in the display alcove may be the principal or only decoration in an otherwise virtually empty humble room. that the newborn world emerges. to devour that which baffles my sight. The positive ( yoh ) and negative ( in ) energy.net: Through the act of arranging flowers one can realize Gods ' blessing that pervades all the universe and will be given eyes to see his own road to life. represent the energies of life and death and the passing of time -past. Shogo Kariyazaki has exhibited
. the baffling discovery of c haos in a dewdrop or heart of a flower. a link to the whole universe. present and future.. and is often room fil ling and three dimensional. torn veil of dusty memories which smothers insight.
and anyone who has ever looked at a flower or a seed and envisioned a universe can grasp its implications. The noble samurai.com . his son. What caused the early Jap anese to create a style so out of kilter with the symmetry and balance we westerners are so often fond of? Here is one answer from the Sogetsu School of Ikebana: Sofu Teshigahara was born in Tokyo in 1907. onthenet. The lower classes had no opportunity to create these things. the techniques mastered. I marvel at how the Japanese in the past high the ranking noble samurai. My
. That the great difference between floral decoration and Ikebana lies in the belief that once all the rules are learnt. He believed that Ikebana is not merely decorating with flowers. The centuries of civil wars all but ended after Ieyasu won the great battle at Sekigahara in 1 600 and assumed the Shogunate of all Japan. Thus we create living sculptures. He learnt flower-arranging from his father who had studied many styles of different schools. Shinto and Zen Buddhism were at the root of this way of life. The expression of beauty through natural materials. we must sculpt. bonsai or dwarf trees. ikebana In the introduction to his book. The Art of Ikebana .Anyone who has ever relaxed on the grass and made a chain of clover bloss oms can recognize the elements. When twenty-five he was ready to start the Sogetsu School of Ikeban. Hiroshi wrote.. in the masked ritual dramas of the Kabuki and No h theaters. That i s living death. in the tea ceremony. I noticed that the contemporary ikebana at Wave Hill seemed less asymmetrical. learned s ensitivity to all of the arts. at leisure now. ikebana. m ore concerned with room filling installations. temples and rock gardens.. along w ith those traditionalists left today managed to live in a way that surrounded them with vi sual and audible beauty. Hiroshi Teshigahara's bamboo works ho wever.blocks of soil seemingly sliced straight out of the earth and a rowboat filled w ith clay. We live in a time when vision is limited because it is saturated with popular ar t media of every kind. to a numbness in the deepest part of the spirit. in their pai nted screens.. maintain a delicate balance of symmetry and asymmetry. To be in the middle of a clamoring traffic jam of media year after y ear can lead to the loss of sensibility. Ser ene beauty appears in the design of Japanese houses. it is an Art. Ikebana is much more than a de corative hobby. which is the essential art of ikebana depen ds on the integrity of the person creating the composition..
. In Kyoto. neon signs and madcap anarchy of do wntown Tokyo. a great peace prevails in the asymmetrical gardens made of raked sand and rocks.greatest pleasure while visiting Japan was to walk slowly through and contemplat e the many Zen temples in Kyoto rather than the bustle.
if you but at last be built. your world will
JAMES ALLEN. She demands its return. hanging upon a bough. of these. the magical feather-mantle of a Tennin. The Chorus explains the dance as symbolical of the daily changes of the moon. purest thoughts. The plot of the play Hagoromo . an aerial spirit or celestial dancer. Vision Quotes We see with the eyes of poetry as in the quote from Jane Hirshfield.. the beauty that forms in your mind. heart. She accepts the offer. The introducti on reads. translated by Pound and Fenollosa. He argues with her. for out of them will grow heavenly environment. if she will teach him her dance or part of it. Cherish the music that stirs in your the loveliness that drapes your all delightful conditions. Cherish your ideals. the Tennin is
.THE CELESTIAL SPIRIT Cherish your visions.In the final e.. all remain true to them. is as follows: The priest fin ds the Hagoromo. As a Man Thinketh. and finally pr omises to return it. the Feather-mantle. An especial ly beautiful example is the play Hagoromo .
along the highways of air. And later. near the end of the play: Chorus : The spring mist is widespread abroad. The first occurs when the Tennin argues with the fisherman for the ret urn of her feather-mantle. and we who are born of the sun. The bay of Kiyomi lies clear before the snow upon Fuji. hearing the voices grow fewer. Are not all these presages of the spring? There are but few ripples beneath the piny wind. grant us the favour of your delaying. here in Nippon. so perhaps the wild olive's flower will blossom in the infinitely unreachable moon. We learn to see through all of our senses. and even here comes the heavenly. and well accustomed. The visi on of poetry unlocks the shutters of our minds. when it is released into the winds. you in the form of a maid. We read. The pine-waste of Miwo puts on the colour of spring. We live for beauty. it is as n atural as breathing if we read with our hearts wide open and our souls bare. wonderful wind. Her flowery head-ornament is putting on colour. O. and the moon unclouded by her lord. the wild geese fewer and fewer. hearing the sky-bird. sky and light of the universe. accustomed. which can only appear.
. shut the accustomed path of the clouds. Chorus : Enviable colour of breath. beyond and beneath the stars. Here are two excerpts from Hagoromo. How sacred and beautiful it is to have these visions bestowed by words. how deep her longing to return! Plover and seagull are on the waves in the offing. The play shows the relation of the early Noh to the God-dance. wonder of clouds that fade along the sky that was our accustomed dwelling. There is naught but a fence of jewels between the earth and the sky. we see. here where the moon is unshadowed. Not sky is here. It is quiet along the shore. the sun's field. O blow. Do they go or do they return? She reaches out for the very blowing of the spring wind against heaven. Poetry awakens our inner souls to the beauty that censorship in the brain often disguises or discards. and the gods within and without. the second while she does the sacred dance prior to disappearing . This alone intervenes. li ke the feather spirit.supposed to disappear like a mountain slowly hidden in mist. but the beauty. this truly is sign of the spring.
like pterodactyls? I neither proselytize for or embrace any man's religion or woman's either. Noble prize winning scientist David Hubel w rites: The visual world is systematically mapped on the geniculate and cortex. or can you? Detoxification. Poetry breeds visions as does the mystic. Tajikistan in central Asia on 30 September 1207 to a family of learned theologians. The poet Rumi was born in Wakhsh.. What you get is what your brain de cides. and has shed his or her mortal coils for the embrace of the
. or do yo u drink the sacred wine and whirl off into unknown reaches of holy space. prophet or shaman's intoxi cated ruminations. I want to s ee everything. endless work at detoxification of the visual structure of your brain is needed. The pulpit' s a bully place if the priest be wise enough. and in metaphysical journeying. and you can't control it. I will embrace every religion in spirit. in clouds. It's worse than drugs or alcohol. Their complete functions are still little understood although you may read that the paths are charted.MYSTIC VISION In his book. Digest that! What you see isn't what you get. He wrote of the mystical side of life. I want to see. In those days it was not obvious that the brain operates on the information it receives. (Author: The geniculates are two way stations in the thalamus where visual information from the retina is processed on the way to the visual cortex.) What was not clear in the 1950's is what that mapping might mean.the message of the next chapter will be that a structure such as the primary visual cortex does exert profound transformations on the information it receives. Do any of you see visions in the church while eating the body of the Lord. Eye. transforming it in such a way as to make it more useful.. don't you?. Brain and Vision . approaching God as though he was a great bird which wafted down sparkling feathers in the ho ly light.
The lady with me sai d she watched me dance around the trees which. We can't all be divers hooked up to aqua lungs and oxygen tan ks in or out of cages. One mild winter day. It keeps the shark out but it keeps you in while outside rainbow schools of fish flaunt flamboyant colors. The camera did its work. Hurry. I put saw in italics because my no-mind or intuitive reflex unconscious mind saw these trees. enraptured. You have leapt free of the cage Your wings are flung back in the wind of God. I saw a singular kind of b eauty. displayed their sculptural grand eur. Leave behind the stagnant and marshy waters. Single branches often appeared too massive and heavy to support themselves. hurry. to the source of life RUMI The cage of restricted vision is like the steel cage used by divers to film the great white shark. I was in a trance. I presided like a floating spirit. is not a bad way to look at the art of seeing. The vision of a shaman must be earned by dying and rebirth. We can dive naked and filled with wonder into the flowering. which. I visited the Bayard Cutting Arboretum on Long Island to se e and photograph the trees for a fine art project I'm working on. not seeing but seeing. hurry.unseeable and holy of holies. seeing deep into the hearts and spirits of these noble trees which flung their convoluted. Fly away. and the baths of al l the western stars. O bird. spinning mystery of life on earth to sail beyond the sunsets. VERY TREE
. ratcheting. dancing around the splen did trunks. wheeling. fly away bird to your native home.. asymmetrical spreads of branches high over my head. We are not granted vision without cost.. shorn of leaves.
Tenacious like a hand Gnarled rootage in the dark Interior of land. Earth's absolute arithmetic Of being is not in the flowering stick Filled with the sperm of sun But in a figure seen Behind our eyelids when we close Slow petals of the brain to match the night's repose.Forget the tube of bark. Alliterative leaves. Bright incidental bird Whose melody is fanned Among the bundled sheaves Wild spool of the winding word. Stripped of green root and leaf. Colors pour in and out: Here is a timeless structure wrought Like the candelabrum of pure thought. Getting no seed to sprout. Reject: and let there be Only tree. STANLEY KUNITZ
in eternal night. A deep sea jellyfish spins like a wheel of fireworks. jellyfish and their relatives the sea-pens arm themselves with light to dazzle. Signalling or seeing. luring or decoying color and pattern are basic to communication and concealment among animals in the ocean. snails.BRITTLE STARS I've traveled to hundreds of ports of call around the world on great ships. THE OCEANS . or a lert themselves to predators. Deep beneath the surface of the sea. They s till do at night during wartime to avoid breaking radio silence. worms. half plant. hiding or hunting.. At night. creatures communicate with light. color has little function. This essay taken from my travel journals was writte n while making an Atlantic ocean crossing on Cunard Line's QE2. sea-squirts. They 've been my base during many adventures. Jellyfish. Far beneath. as in the rest of the natural world. bursts of li ght flicker round
. The rest is lost in heat. clams. or at least we used to. in that frightening abyss where light never calls. here.But in the gloomy abyss beneath. befor e the advent of radio. At night the ocean's surface often glows with luminous light. a constellation of fish radiates light.. A Celebration Communicate with light? We humans do it. squid. We humans get only 10 percent of electric energy out light bulbs in the form of light. It deals with the phenom ena of light in the depths of the sea. Beneath the sea nearly 100 percent of bioluminescent energy is converted i nto light. shrimps and other crustaceans convert chemical energy into light energ y. ship captains at sea flashed coded light signals to each other. frighten. half animal flash myriads of galaxies dancing on the murmuring waves. starfish. Billions of single celled organisms dinoflagellates.
tapestries of fishy design. firefleas swim in groups. The females recognize their ma te's patterns. What a dance that would be! No special effects. Angl er fish. interstellar wastes trembling with nascent
. I dance th rough the heavens like the seven daughters of Atlas. Glowing bacteria flash signals from the eyes of flashlight fish. shark toothed jaws. another kind of celebration takes place a celebration of light. leaving a morsel rather than a banquet. themselves dark. a beacon across bill ions of light years. journey on the solar wind into deep space. spark ing and spitting like a Catherine's wheel. luminescent signals to open up dialogues. I wrap myself in light's energy a thousan d fathoms down. which. pulsing lights. In the C aribbean.its body. I think. who have evolved eyelid like shutters to turn out the lights when danger comes. crawls off to safety. it sheds an ar m tip. lik e voracious angler fish. the brittle-star fish outsmarts its enemies with a bri lliant strategy. you are my guiding light. dangle luminous 'bait' from their dorsal fin fishing poles to l ure prey into gaping. glow. I wish I could fla sh lights in the dark and dance away from my sparkling body parts. I am one with Oceanus's womb of sentient life. dangle luminescent lures to entrap my conscious mind and bend my si lver head to darkness and despair. a fireworks display to mock a billion whirlin g chalices of stars birthing in deep space. Each male f lashes points of light in unique individual patterns. At night QE2 sparkles with a thousand lights. fly into the clouds of light. Most wonderful. biochemistry converting energy to light. I will enter dreadful abysses where thoughts. you birth light as we live by light. The light comes from clouds of glowing bacteria inha biting the angler fish's lures. My light shines forever. If a barrage of lights from its arms fail to frighten off its enemy. Myriad s of tiny creatures flash lights. They alone can see the red shrimps. illuminate. miles down. shed my sparkling limbs round Jupiter and Sat urn. coded mites. Below the glittering QE2 in the ab yssal sea. invisible to other predators who see no colo rs. veritable clouds of light. an eternal delight. discover their consorts and mate in the dark. lights out. Ocean. I glow. miraculously. I ride beams of light into abyssal clouds. minus one arm tip. the brittle star. clouds of shimmering thoughts wink on and off. I will glow wit h a terrible fire to light deep seas of my mind. Meanwhile. continues to flash. A few cle ver fish employ a headlight which emits deep red light in the abyss where no colored ligh t penetrates. Brittle star. Radiate. In these labyrinthian corridors.
I alight where cosmic furn aces glow. RICHARD JEFFRIES .novas sparkling amidst fiery seas of condensing dust. Light. There is an entity. as yet unrecognized There is an immense ocean over which the mind can sail. glitter. flame into furious fusion to cradle countless newborn stars in a univer sal ocean of pure light. upon which the vessel of thought has not yet been launched. I want more ideas of soul-life. The Story of My Heart THE GOD OF LIGHT
. light alone reigns supreme. 1883. A great life -an entire civilization -lies just outside the pale of common thought. There is so much beyond all that has ever yet been imagined. I am certain that there are more yet to be found . a Soul-Entity.
Mists.. the wild spirit which tints my work with glowing colors. The fixed point of day the sun. by extension. Bash o. twittered and glided downwards. always changing. I felt it. I have never see n the light the same anywhere in the world. I am alive because the sun wills it. Month and Year. The light. glowing steadfastly upon me as when I rested in the narrow valley grooved out in prehistoric times. eighth century A.D. By these I saw my soul. A Guide to Greek Gods. Theoi Project. the broad walls. heating the parapet. The sun is my familiar. as we all know. in the hollows of the houses. against the lit walls. like a spiri t of many colors. the god of the gift of sight and of the measurement of time (the time goddesses -the twelve sister Hours. The light from the sun is filtered by the atmosphere and influenced by the angle with which it reaches the earth. and man's pollution all change the way we see light. lighting the great heaven. poet. I am light itself transposed into living mind. In my travels. fog. is evanescent. the sky. The very nature of the air in different parts of the world imparts a variety of colors to way light is seen.There was a faint blue colour in the air hovering between the built-up banks. Helios was a close friend of the other fire-god Hephaistos. in the midst of the supernatural.. Spirits & Monsters I am infatuated with light like a lover. I felt out into the depths of the ether. lighting the least speck of dust. always surprising. I worship other gods as well. is said to have drowned watching t he moon in a pool. HELIOS was the all-seeing god of the sun. Light is the great creator. the immortal. as a inquisitive world trav eler and recorder of the earth's cultures should. Burning on steadfast. Dawn and sunset light. by these I knew the supernatural to be more intensely real than the sun. I felt the presence of the immense powers of the universe. The sun filters through my thoughts the way it burns t he mist off a mountainside. RICHARD JEFFRIES . So intensely conscious of the sun. rain. Lighting the broad river. the first' hippie' or flower ch ild and considered the greatest of the Chinese poets. I was intensely conscious of it. Burning on the great sun stood in the sky. the limitless space. like a moonstruck swain chasing the ref lections of the moon in a pond (Li Po. there that moment. snow. The Narrow Road to the Far North . Light and life embrace on this earth and throughout the misty regions of interst ellar space. and the greatness of the material realised the spirit. while drunk on wine). among the immortal. gleaming on my finger-nail. volcanic eruptions which throw vast clouds of dust into the atm osphere. and the three sisters called Seasons -were said to attend his throne). In his book. is very beautiful. the
. even when revisiting places. the goddesses Day. The swallows wheeled and climbed. I touched the supernatural. and ever present as my thought. He was also.. The Story of My Heart I worship the sun god. I felt too in the midst of eternity then.
that is. to be
..all who have achieved excellence in any art. possess one thing in common..seventeenth century Japanese master of the haiku or seventeen syllable form of p oetry wrote: .
dictates the color we see. and whatever such a mind dreams of is the moon. Basho's short poems. Here is a brief on the character of light: In 1665-1666. Whatever such a mind se es is a flower. probably red. we know that the rainbow of colors one gets from a prism is a consequence of refraction and the different wavelengths of different colors. finally a black card. and a host of others waited for the public's vision to catch up. illuminate the natural world. The lig ht. The beauty of art is that it is subjective. because there is no such thing as true color. Isaac Newton studied sunlight and discovered that it could be broken down into a rainbow of colors by a prism. Rather. Color is the great deceiver. (See incandescent light below) In the same way that the sun can produce light of many different wavelengths that appears white when mixed. then a red card . Pollock. Today. and each of us sees color in h is or her own way. Van Gogh. In the artist's own time. It is the same with the art of photogra phy in its many guises. Matisse. "White" sunlight is not really whitet here is no wavelength of light that is white. a large range of colors can be produced. too late. for photographs tell no more truth than a wielder of the camera is capab le of revealing. We see color in relation to other colors. DeKooning. lik e flashes of lightning. often. televisions and computer screens also mix light to produce different colors. green and blue. If you examine your computer screen or television with a magnifying glass. it is a mixture of many different colors that appears white to our brains after being processed by our eyes. you will see tiny dots. whether artificial or natural. You will see the yellow change its apparent hue each time. the shapes and colors are often not recognized as desirable or lovely. An easy test is to put a bright yellow card next to a blue card. The artist creates col or harmonies or dissonances according to his or her desires or compulsions. By mixing these colors in different amounts.one with nature throughout the four seasons of the year. or they are ignored.
. as with Van Gogh.
regular light bulbs (not florescen t) and fires are all incandescent sources of light. and other electromagnetic radiation of longer and shorter wavelengths. most substances are close enough that this color sequenc e can be observed. these materials would emit radiation in the infrared wavelengths which we feel as heat (fires." This seemingly self-contradictory name arises from the history of physics-scientists studying this type of light emission modeled their theories on ideal materials that would absorb all colors of light." Although ideal black body materials don't exist in reality. applied to different wavelengths and energies. the hottest stars appear to be a blueish-white while cooler stars such as our sun are more yellowish in appearance. while luminescence involves only the electrons.The "electromagnetic spectrum" is simply a phrase used to describe electromagnetic radiation of all wavelengths. This is why a fire tends to be redder than a halogen lamp-the filament in a halogen lamp is heated to a higher temperature than normal fires. There are two basic types of light sources. have such a long wave length and low energy that our eyes can't detect them and they pass through our bodies. microwaves. As temperatures are increased. for example. This includes radio waves. for example. and eventually "white-hot. Radio waves. visible light. The wonderful variety of the electromagnetic spectrum is all a result of the same laws. so these materials would glow red. then yellow. Depending on how hot the material is. "Why don't we see radio waves like we see light?" or "Why do we need special infrared light bulbs to heat things up?" Although all portions of the electromagnetic spectrum are governed by the same laws. fire and light bulbs. ultraviolet. Likewise. Some sources of incandescent light are: the sun. Incandescent light is produced when atoms are heated and release some of their thermal vibration as electromagnetic radiation. x rays. It wa s found that at lower temperatures. It is the most common type of light that you see everyday sunlight. hence appearing to be "black bodies".
. increasingly more energetic radiation is emitted. the photons released have different energies. then orange. their different wavelengths and different energies allow them to have different effects on matter. and therefore. emit most of their energy in the infrared). different colors. infrared. gamma rays. If all electromagnetic radiation is fundamentally the same thing. you might ask. Incandescent light is also know n as "black body radiation. Incandescence involves the vibration of entire atoms.
when an electron jumps down to a lower energy level. or light of a specific color. black holes and a hundred thousand more
. THE BIG BANG & LIGHT At what incredible moment after the big bang ten or fifteen billion years ago di d light suddenly enter the universe? Was it there already and was light the creator of t he universe? I like to think that light is God's glowing mantle which He threw across the black ness to begin the process of making galaxies. luminescent light occurs at lower temperatures. it will release a specific amount of energy which becomes a photon.Unlike incandescence. It's difficult . star clusters. but the view is enchanting and illuminating." Thus. This boost may be provided by many sources: electrical current as in florescent lights. chemical reactions as in Halloween light sticks and fire-flies. It's as good a theory as any. light emitting diodes. stars and planets. Discovering Light . perhaps infinite colle ction of galaxies. It turns out that electrons like to have energy a t specific "energy levels. because it is produced when an electron releases some of its energy to electromagnetic radiation. quasars. not an entire atom. continued luminescence requires something to continuously give the electrons a boost to a higher energy level to keep the cycle going. mercury-vapor street lights. or radioactivity as in luminous paints. supernovas. Therefore. neon light. television screens and computer monitors. ThinkQuest '99 Those paragraphs are like taking a run up a hill or mountainside. t o name just a few examples. No physicist truly believes he or she knows what started the colossal.
I like to think so..According to the Yor uba: The gods have inner or spiritual eyes (oju inun) with which to see the world of heaven and outside eyes (oju ode) with which to view the world of men and women. Lee W. He will then look very broadly across the whole of all the devotees. reflect ashe. . he will open his eyes abnormally.. What is the peculiar quality of vision that we do not truly know from where insi de our brains or minds it emanates? In Flash of the Spirit. Darkness. SEEING WHAT ISN T THERE
. as in certain pl aces deep in the sea or in buried caverns. the unanswered questions of creation? Life can exist without light. There is here a rela tive big bang! Albert Einstein: a brain is a silent Internet.. or do they s omehow create luminescence inside their minds. In the desert or at s ea at night. Schvaneveldt wrote o n the Internet. a pin prick of a being shivering in the night. that swing in the heavens. Is light the spiritual power of the universe? Is it the holy of holies.astounding events which daily explode around the universe. as theirs is the darkness. Light/Dark. the grai l itself. he and he are twins that with and i n their arts bring alive in this earth the things that sing.. Blind people adjust to their world of four senses. but they can only imagine the world of light.persons possessed of the spirit of a Yoru ba deity. the brightness of the spirit..the radiance of the eyes.. I feel the star filled cosmos suddenly race away from me into the limitless desert s and seas of outer space. but this is not a life we would embrace.. When a person comes under the influence of a spirit. I am dwarfed. Lightness. his ordinary eyes swell to accommodate the inner eyes. African & Afro-American Art and Ph ilosophy . author Robert Farris Thompson writes ..look about grandly with fixed expressions. th e magnificence of the gaze. the eyes of the god. Let t heirs be the light. Albert Einstein and Steve Hawkings.
which is designed to record approximately what I see will do... the Photoshop program my brush and paints. Unto us lowliest. I am not interested in seeing the reality of these images. immaculate sigh of stars. My aim is to capture the play o f clouds against the massive towers and myriad cables and wires. wild. That has nothing t o do with the vast spectrum of electromagnetic radiation that plays invisibly all about me as I walk the bridge. The 11 plus megapixel camera creates huge 52. contrast. and the lover s cry. of the fury fused (How could mere toil align thy choiring strings!) Terrific threshold of the prophet s pledge.. O Sleepless as the river under thee. Pianist Alfred Brendel quotes the German romantic poet Novalis. I work with my digital files like an action painter. Against the traffic lights that skim thy swift Unfractioned idiom. HART CRANE. the prairies dreaming sod. abstractly. The digital camera and digital programs free me to discover worlds of co lors.. . That is what the c amera.. free of the constraints of nascent technology and tyrannical mind set. Vaulting the sea.. Poem: To Brooklyn Bridge On a breezy beautiful sunny summer day I walk across the Brooklyn Bridge with my Canon EOS1Ds digital top of the line camera. descend And of the curveship lend a myth to God.Oh harp and altar. Beading thy path condensed eternity: And we have seen night lifted in thine arms. illuminations really. I experiment with the images in a boisterous. in the last few years.
. audacious and unruly way like Pollock. can be seen shimmering through the veil of order. Suddenly. . That is what my brain forces me to do. I will down load these i mages into my computer and work with them in Adobe Photoshop. Basquiat.. light and shade. Prayer of pariah. vividly recreating what is really there but cannot be seen. or de Kooning . sometime sweep...9 megabyte files for each image when decompressed. The digi tal image is my sketch. even in Mozart.'chaos' now and then.
We don't know anything about the universe until it reaches the mature age of a billionth of a trillionth of a second. a hologram of gravity's impure architecture. so tiny I cannot see the light. I am the cognizant photons of holy light. painted with black rainbows. I prowl the infinitely tiny foam of quantum mechanics where the universe quietly explodes insubstantial probabilities. I want to see deep. a nothingness containing no space. I want to observe ravening flares of pure energy thousands of light years across. a curious form of vacuum. its gentle omnipresence in the form of the wakening Day. no matter. Only God knows what happened at the very beginning: Nobel Prize winning physicist Leon Lederman
. some very short time after creation in the big bang. tintinnabulations which ravish my inner eye. When you read or hear anything about the birth of the universe. flaring like the mystical sunrise in my brain stem. no time. I am the light. pure. no light. I long to see light itself. That is. digital space and I see . zero. its ray s and undulations. A story logically begins at the beginning. spanning gravity 's timeless. sentient thing loves not the all-joyous light --with its colors. there was a void. In the very beginning. I desire to see star births . but this story is about the universe an d unfortunately there are no data for the very beginnings--none. NOVALIS I'm intoxicated with exploding light and fireworks which burst from my digital b rain transmuted through my digital camera into the holy grail of energy. Tiny. someone is making it up--we are in the realm of philosophy.Before all the wondrous shows of the widespread space around him. what living. deep. no sound. iridescent. busy with the constant state of remaking itself. I am lost in space. Yet the laws of nature were in place and this curious vacuum held potential. the all-knowing light which irradiates my mind. down in the unconscious realms where primitive n eurons transmit a web of light which envelops the universe. quasars and colossal galactic collisions crossing limitless chasms of outer space.
Your retina contains hundreds of millions neurons working in parallel. Have you flown your eye? It is attached to your brain. the electrical impulses are sent through an electric cable cont aining over one million wires called axons. The optic nerve fibers from the eyes terminate at two bodies in the thalamus (th e aforementioned structure in the middle of the brain) known as the Lateral Genicu late Nuclei (or LGN for short). Rods and cones in vast arrays (120 million rods and 7 million cones) accept the incoming photons as electrical signals and switch on and off accordingly. After further processing. your desktop computer analyzes and censors much of the fireworks entering your eye. The eye is not a window. the quintillions of photons each split second which would literally blind you if acc epted raw. And that's just the beginning. also known as V1. You may jump ahead if desired. It's a dreary illusion fostered by evolution an d nurture. and to other parts of your brain. From the retina. no t to your skull. Hubel . Right there at the retina. What you see isn't there. in Vi sual Intelligence.THE MYSTERIOUS EYE The eye is the supreme organ created by evolution and it is totally misunderstoo d! That is so important that some of the information below is repeated. the results travel on a new set of axons t o the primary visual cortex. The computing power at your retina exceeds that of the most powerful supercomputers. writes: The German physicist and physiologist Herman von Helmhotz (18211894) described vision as a process of unconscious inference:
. One LGN lies in the left hemisphere and the other lies in th e right hemisphere.
Hoffman concludes his book with these words: Visual intelligence occupies almost half of your brain's cortex. Donald Hoffman writes. Pla ying with the large digital files in Photoshop. but a sophisticated process of construction whose intricacies we are no w beginning to understand.it is intimate ly connected to your emotional intelligence and your rational intelligence.what happens when you see is no t a mindless process of stimulus and response.
When I worked with my Brooklyn Bridge images. The com puter has no inhibitions. Von Helmhotz surmised these things a century and a half ago.. I uncovered what my eye could not see. it may be permissible to speak of the psychic acts of ordinary perception as unconscious conclusions... like an evanesc ent whirlpool of shifting shapes and colors.. In their result they are equivalent to a conclusion. are generally not conscious activities. I discovered. Hubel goes on to say.
. using what I imagined was there. as behaviorists thought for much of t he twentieth century. thereby making a distinction of some sort between them and the common so-called conscious conclusions. It forwards these constructions to your emotional and rational intelligence. see. it reveas what I entice it to reve al. blinded by the need to eliminate irrelevant information.. perplex neuroscientists today. It constructs the elaborate visual realities in which you live and move and interact. We must strike through the masks of obscurity and mirage and uncover all the man y colored spices of Samarkand. The British neurophysiologist David Marr (1946-1981) descri bed visual constructions by analogy to information processing in computers: Vision is a process that produces from images of the external world a description that is useful to the viewer and not cluttered with irrelevant information. I sensed that these paintings in the sky were the re. in the cloud filled skies above the bridge a kaleidoscope of elegant abstract swirls and eddies. but my eye could not see them. visual feasts. which use them as raw materials in further constructions. relevan t or irrelevant. In his preface to Visual Intelligence.. The objects of obscure desire we think we see. or fantasize we see. but unconscious ones..The psychic activities that lead us to infer that there in front of us at a cert ain place is a certain object of a certain character. ...
or who subtly transforms realities.
. Playing. The art of image transformation begin with a new vi sion of the world. Today. O'Keefe and de Kooning imagined. wildly flamboyant canvases. s eeds we continuously plant to await a bountiful harvest of beauty. That should never stop us from making tens of thousands of mistakes. garbage out. Hidden in chaos is a higher order. Such visionaries a s Van Gogh. my ey e/camera symbiosis gives me the vision of a painter who constructs from the raw material of nature his or her wildest fantasies. The large (53. we must learn to see. First. We must take chances and seek aleatory or chance co mpositions. As a n artist. Suddenly. Garbage in. Learning to see wi th a camera is learning to see anywhere. and I use the word playing in its most creat ive sense. Monet. I can imagine what is there. at the cutting edge of digita l technology. enables me to create images I have only imagined but never seen. It comes from an eye that learns to instantaneously recognizes significan t patterns and make strong compositions in the camera before clicking the shutter button. discovered and painted their fa ntasies on richly colored. Matisse. We mu st learn as well to instantaneously recognize and discard cliche patterns which enthrall us with scenes resembling our past visions.9 megabyte) files which come from my Canon EOSD1s digital camera contain a w ealth of information which my emotionally and rationally conditioned eye cannot see. we can paint our visions in the computer and print them. The well known computer adage goes.DIGITAL CAMERA GIGABYTES Our new tools create the possibilities for discovering a new vision of the world .
bruised m y heels on the rough beaches of the northern sea where tall dunes make walking so hard. photons which strike our eyes. wild wisteria hangs from the pine trees. like whirling kaleidoscopes. a snail without its shell. Basho describes his life in the simple hut in which he lived for a while. We live in an all encompassing shower of infinitely tiny meteorites.. gave up city life some ten years ago and now I'm approaching fifty. the god of war. too. a Zen intuitive eye. He saw with his clear camera eye. And now this year here I am drifting by the waves of Lake Biwa.Azaleas continue in bloom. which was built in 1063... THE HUT OF THE PHANTOM DWELLING In a letter to a friend written in 1690. He saw in flashes of seventeen syllable
.Onrushing technology gives a digital artist a suddenly extravagant and limitless palette containing countless gigabytes of information like the human brain and the starry universe. We breathe slowly. or quietly observes utter simplicity in shades of grey. Basho's haiku poems were written with the inner eye. relax and enter a universe of bright mirrors which. enter our brains and coalesce into miracles or dr eary dust... The grebe attaches its floating nest to a single strand of reed to keep it from washing away in the current.. the Zen moment of being there. The hut was near a shrine of Hachiman. I've. when the conscious self dissolves into a hail and firestorm of flamboyant colors and shap es. endow the world with beauty a nd agape intense romantic love. Light from the sun radiates more photons each second than could be stored as byt es on all the computers in the world. I'm like a bagworm that's lost its bag. Inspired vision trusts the intuitive unconscious. I. and a cuckoo now and then passes by. the eye that sees what isn' t there.
I give myself w holly to this one concern.. The Narrow Road to the Far North (Penguin)
. The wind knows. Poetry often carries with in it the holograms of subtle allusions which only the most sensitive translations can beg in to reveal. I've w orn out my body in journeys as aimless as the winds and clouds. It is the same with seeing and making images.. tenderness and sorrows of his world. Basho writes.haiku the beauty. Red. unskilled and talentless as I am. The promise of early chill. poetry. Much of what is there escapes notice by the eye conditioned to see what is useful. Heartlessly indifferent to time. red is the sun. and expended my feelings on flowers and birds. BASHO. Near the end of his letter. I am awestruck To hear a cricket singing Underneath the dark cavity Of an old helmet.and so in the end. however.
Thus a tangible bridge is established between the observer and the observed thing. The falls are pa rt of the learning process. or is it my deepest imagination playing with fire. Once I was traveling through Utah and had stopped in the now bustling town of Mo ab. That is the beginning of my poet ry. asserts that the gentle fire that warms the human body flows out through the eyes in a smooth and dense stream of light. When I fire my camera. scan their surfaces. catch them. the neces sary housekeeping which we all must endure. trace their borders. you must free yourself as a child would who falls off a bik e over and over until it attains a certain balance and wheels freely away. Impressed by this experienced. Sewall goes on to write about wrapping her imagination around a near quarter moo n. in his Timaeus. Laura Sewall quotes William Blake: Let the world of rationalization and of the senses be consumed in the fires of imagination.IN SIGHT OF SENSIBILITY 'In looking at an object we reach out for it. a unique capacity of the mind and t he deepest voice of the soul. and over this bridge the impulses of light that emanate from the object travel to the eyes and thereby to the soul.' RUDOLPH ARNHEIM I give myself every day to learning how to see. jumped into my car. aimed my camera and watched trans fixed at the
. She says that imagination is a mode of consciousness. ran towards the rock . I went out for a walk very early that morning and had a sudden flash of instinct or unconscious calling. With an invisible finger we move through the space around us. and careened down the road to the Park entrance. Free the eternal soul. seeking images unseen and buried and imme rsed in my unconscious? To see. close to Arches National Park. touch them. explore their texture. is it I who sees. let it ta ste again Infinity. my music. The sky was beginning to light up in a curio us way. tripped on a low fence and fell hard. I was up in a second. What has imaginatio n to do with seeing? Our imaginations free us from the tedium of daily chores. early thinkers describe the process of vision correspondingly. Plato. go out to the distant places where things are found. I ran to the motel. It is an eminently active occupation. my work with images. At the beginning of her chapter titled Imagine This in Sigh t and Sensibility. A soft reddish light filled the dawn sky. For example. that it shimmers behind everything we do. grabbed my camera. I arrived at the formation c alled Balanced Rock just as the sky came on fire. We we must fall a lot to see this world in its ravishing beauty. I jumped out of the car.
dawn light flaming behind the silhouette of the rock. I saw nothing anyone could n't have seen.
. It simply took quick action to capture the fleeting fiery dawn.
Freed from constr aints of early conditioning. We create our visual world with our malleable brains if we dare to use them in seemingly irrational or dangerous ways.There's a wild side to seeing. hurling away constraints may lead.. in the beginning. So obvious an idea is not so easy to ach ieve. It required an effort to maintain the feeling. or invent. it gilded all the dea d walls. any part of such a landscape. and I felt that it was only while under it that one could draw. which I excavate from among ideas and images foun d in Japanese culture and in the work of abstract artists anywhere. unfettered imagination.
. any artwork has the power to invest the inquiring eye and mind with a startling and eventually very pleasing taste. art critic John Ruskin (1819-1900) writes of a simple scene. mind-set and fear of the new. It is well to swim hard and often in these uncharted waters until you flo at comfortably under benevolent skies. The art of see ing begins with discovery of beauty in the commonplace.." But what is that essen ce? Did Aristotle imagine that his eyes were deceiving him? It is always the essence whi ch we seek? In his diary. The power of w ildness. We discard much of the beauty in life because it occurs in unlikely places. it was poetry while it lasted. to a kind of chaos. or give glory to. and I felt a charm in every vine tendril that hung over them. I look ed at it with the possession-taking grasp of the imagination the true one. According to Arnheim Aristotle conceives of the "universal character " of an obj ect "directly perceived in it as its essence rather than indirectly collected through the sear ch of common elements in the various specimens of a species or genus.
although I view the new digital te chnology as an alchemist's stone which reveals what isn't there. new power to reveal what our conscious minds censor or obliter ate. It has a formidable power still i n its infancy. I don't know th eir name. Even when my i nner eye sees certain images and triggers the camera. I sharpen it. We are on the verge of a visual revolution brought on by the emergence of digita l photography and digital image programs such as Adobe Photoshop. add a bit of brightness and contrast. A few days later . It has no censor built in. These markets are filled with visual banquets of flowers. I cannot truly see it on the computer sc reen immediately. newly revealed contrasting colors sharply define the elegant arabesques which my cerebral eye did not see t hen or now.' The greatest thing a human soul ever does in this world is to see something and tell what it saw in a plain way. I think. I must manipulate the image in odd ways and coax it to reveal itsel f. For fun. catches my eye. I am struck by the su dden knowledge. The computer sees anew. and walk on. intensify the color.SEEING WHAT ISN T THERE I walk through the flower market on 28th street off Sixth Avenue and study the d isplays. that I don't consciously see as much as I think I see. I am in my studio with a young student intern studying the images from the flower market on one of my computers. The effect on our vision cannot be predicted. The flowers are wrapped in white paper which makes arabesque-lik e patterns. Suddenly the image jumps into life. Using Adobe Photoshop. The orange display catches our eyes. I had observed this now intensely curvaceous asymmetrical composition when I was m aking the photograph with my inner or unconscious intuitive eye. Hundreds of people can talk for one who
. A display of orange flowers. The owners plea santly agree to my photographing their displays. but it looks rather uninter esting. I take it into curves' and play. I love sunflowers because they speak to me of light's mysteries and shed a cheerfu l glow on the world. I photograph the display rather casually. The computer pro grams give us a sudden.
Since depth of field dim inishes rapidly the nearer you get to the subject. since the slightest movement is magnifie d at close range. but thousands can think for one who can see. I spot a large bee on a lily and move in very close. The lens enable s me to photograph deep in the heart of flowers if I wish. You must take the lens off the autofocus mode and focus by hand. their spirits veiled in the chiaroscuro of light and color . JOHN RUSKIN On the next day. throwing the composition out of kilter. and developing the technique to execute your vis ion with your camera. The technique sounds simple. This will require that you have a flash in the camera or an external flash such as my Cano n speedlite 550EX. I must swoop in. shakes. I go to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden to photograph more flowers. is a revelation. all in one. The Brooklyn Botanic Garden. It is about seeing without restraint. I will seek the hidden heart of the flowers. JONATHAN SWIFT
. wings covered wit h yellow pollen. Instead. but it is difficult to execute. A number of times my finger on the shutter at the moment of release pushes the cam era slightly. to attain sharpness where desired. jitters. you must move t he camera. like a s amurai warrior wielding his sword in a split second. Bees abound. I expected few f lowers in bloom in the midsummer heat. it (the camera) fires. postcard.can think. for your hand to steady. At close range with the macro. My tool of choice is a 100 mm. the ca mera fires. It isn't calendar. To see clearly is poetry. and in a fraction of a second. suddenly. not rotate the lens. seeing what is almost invisible to t he naked eye. see! Then. mysteries unseen and beauty unfolding. Sunday. Once in very close to where you want to be. I am greeted with a profusion of brilliant ly colored flowers from giant lotuses in the pond in front of the conservatory to lavish di splays of lilies and many more. you maneuver the c amera with tiny movements until the image in the finder speaks to you and. Vision: The art of seeing the invisible. macro lens. everything moves. with out volition. buzzing quietly about their tasks. It is all about seeing. prophecy and religion. this Day in July. it is well to stop the lens down to f:16 or f :22. I must work on this. greeting card images of flowers that I'm after. Waiting for the wind to stop. very fast. at intense magnification.
it starts there too
. What I saw with my inner eye when on the bridge. chiaroscuro. avoiding self censorship. I am busy seeing on a large scale. to see more and more of what isn't there. Spectral sunlight winks in and out between the massive girders which support the bridge along with a network of cables. I walk across the new pedestrian and biker's path on the Williamsburg Bridge in Ma nhattan. they groan as they brace this immense structure. An array of hidden colors appear like magic in the seemingly monotonous bluish sky hung with misty clouds. The buck not only stops at their desks. After forty or more years of making images w ith cameras.BRIDGE WORKS Training vision is a lifelong task. and attempting to re-invent your visual world that you grow and see. They willingly assume responsibility for the success or failure of a venture and are answerable for all its facets. Against the light. The resulting images become fodder for a series of joined canvases and psychedel ic looking images which I make into dazzling patterns of light. the spider web like thrust of girders make ikebana-like patterns of asymmetry The girders are flung high and wide around me . Entrepreneurs are risk takers. Early in the morni ng one day. A s ubway train roars past. I begin to truly see. the opposite of the closeup flowe r photography. willing to roll the dice with their money or reputation on the line in support of an idea or enterprise. I hear autos buzzing beneath me. and unexpected colors. It is only by taking the greatest risks. and what I discov ered by allowing my inner eye and a bit of chaotic action painting' to arrange on the com puter surprised and pleased me.
like Lindbergh crossing the Atlantic a lone. The gift of sight is precious. flowers. His outdoor sculptures made with stones. leaves. We toss about like shipwrecked sailors in a small boat on an i mmense sea with no horizon in sight. light playing across cloud castles there is no end. with no maps to go by. most days I don't even get close. sudden revelations colored lights reflected on the streets dur ing rain. filled with turbulent pitfalls that sadden us. The ahhh! of beholding is gone. the success of the brave and audacious. to Goldsworthy. one which deprives us of much of the beauty which can enrich our lives. trying to see what isn't there. You must work for it. in his book Andy Goldsworthy writes At its most successful my to uch' looks into the heart of nature. So it is with our normal vision of the world around us. willy nilly. Albert Einstein put it this way:
. is fodder for his revelations of the unseen beauty in nature. A COLLABORATION WITH NATURE Andy Goldsworthy. icicles and other natural flotsam and jets am often last for a few days or less. The quest for vi sion is much like daring feats of adventure. or doing business. a bee in the heart of a flower. That is good. Picture postcards rarely carry surprises or awakenings. The gift of vision is secured by audaciously setting out into the unknown. stalks. If we don't dare the unknown . We do not have to travel across the country or jet to another contine nt to discover unexpected wonders. We admire the image or we ignore it..VICTOR KIAM We are all entrepreneurs in this life. unsee n because we have learned to take it for granted. These things a re part of a transient process that I cannot understand unless my touch is also transient only in this way can the cycle remain unbroken and the process be complete. The sought after place or thing is shrouded in m ysteries. or Livingston seeking the source of the Nile in unexplored Africa. He records the sculptures with a camera. Whether making images. we create a shallow life. learning to see anew leads to success. By surviving in those seas we awaken to a sky filled with a flaming dawn and we see. The commonplace.
It neither congeals nor fixes itself in one place. regardless of subject. not to reveal the hidden world around us. It takes constant practice. No-Mind or Right Mind wanders freely to view what is not there. like a beg inner a scuba diving overcoming fear of drowning. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. discrimination and thoughts will arise. but only dimly suspects. The No-Mind is the same as the Right Mind. Our open eyes gatherer quintillions of photons every minute. It is the mind that thinks in one direction. or daydreaming. but we hide most of what we see behind a veil in order to avoid being overwhelmed. First w e need to understand that our eyes are as miraculous. We see everything. They are not windows. Thus it is known as the Existent Mind. It's necessary to be overwhelmed now and then. thousand visions go unnoticed. and time was not a universal clock his concept of th e spacetime continuum. Our eyes and our brains have been marvelously trained by evolution to do just this. Each of us is that happy child to whom all of creation from the earth to the sta rry universe awaits recognition.a mysterious order which it does not comprehend. while all ar ound us.. Learn to love the gifts of light and enlig
. Zen Master Takuan Soho says: The Existent Mind is the same as the Confused Mind and is literally read as the mind that exists. It is called No-Mind when the mind has neither discriminations nor thought but wanders about the entire body and extends throughout the entire self. genius o r no. It's like hallucinations. The child knows that someone must have written these books. He saw into the hidden workings of the universe.The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe. It does not know who or how. Einstein's Relativity Theory revealed new world in which the speed of light could not be surpassed. Let us dive deep into the sea' on firm l and and begin to see as children again. We are like a little child entering a huge library. or even more so .. We glory in these wondrous visions. We rel ax our eyes and take in everything. We try to detach ourselves from daily tedium and open ou r eyes like children. In The Unfettered Mind (Kodansha). than the Hubble Sp ace Telescope. Such a myriad of riches must be organized. The walls are covered to the ceilings with books in many different tongues. Scuba techniques revealed the surprising rai nbows of wonders beneath the surface of the sea to our eyes and brains that had no pre-co nditioning. But the child notes a definite plan in the arrangement of the books. and therefore censored nothing. This statement by Takuan is a clue to learning how to see. to penetrate the veil. is capable of seeing beyond the veil of self imposed or peer imposed reality. Each of us. When there is an object of thought in the mind. They are trained to work at ou r daily tasks. a thousand.
htenment. they grieved it on its way. The rewards are beyond measure. too late. And learn. Do not go gentle into that good night
. Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight.
It was a brave act. . The sea paintings car ry within them colors and shapes rarely seen at sea or anywhere. see beyond the surface of things. Writing about a late painting called The Ange l Standing in the Sun .. Turner spoke of light devouring the whole visible world. We stare out at the world
. although we can learn to see many of these enchanting displays of light and color. in About Looking says. We discard tradition. T urner's sea paintings. Berger relates that Turner remarked. Do Not Go Gentle into That Dark Night LIGHT DEVOURS THE WORLD John Berger.. To see like Turner. I was lashed for four hours.DYLAN THOMAS . Our newly innocent eyes. wildly impressionistic at a time (mid-eighteenth century) when painti ng was mostly realism.. freed of much conditioned restraint. re searchers or mystics. and dare to believe that our own new vision is paramount.. we must abandon safe harbors in the mind. To paint The Snowstorm. but I felt bound to record it if I did. ignore the opinions of others whether our peers. and I did not expect to esc ape. show that he dared to see and paint in a new way.I got sailors to lash me to the mast to observe it. but the act of truly seeing th e world is equally brave.
bringing. patterns and designs h idden in these seemingly somber structures. elegant constructs of steel and wire. and their myriad interactions designed to sustain trucks. What I see or do not see. flung across the waterways. and roaring subway trains. I discover myriad colors. and unveil such ravishing beauty and resplendent natural wo nders as would make an emperor envious.with our inner eyes. The bridges sing a syncopated off key tune of creaking girders. cables. in thei r endless varieties. These are gi ant harps. singing a world of ethnic peoples together . the eloquent lines of the wires and cables. Bridges.
. my unconscious instinctive mind records in the camera. You must look hard. For a time my work focuses on flowers and brid ges in Manhattan. shapes. girders. towers. rumbling traffic. working with Photoshop. and subway trains. autos. Overhead. Later. Far below. FLOWERS & BRIDGES The world surprises me every day. Walk ac ross the Brooklyn Bridge with its spider work of cables or the cantilevered Williamsburg Bridge and study the wires. the blue waters reflect the sun. I sight through my camera and construct the raw materials of my digital painter's painte r's palette. the sun peers ou t from scuddng clouds. What is there to see? Flowers are a universe unto themselves. and shapes. gigantic in relation to flowers. are equ ally extraordinary. I see the intricacie s of design wrought in the girders. colors.
gave herself like a flower. They swim around our unconscious like sch ools of rainbow colored fish. I see what I am used to seeing. (Knopf/Callaway) In 1927. isn't there. displaying h uge stamens and pistils. diverse means of viewing the world. cupping the moment. said Steiglitz. One Hundred Flowers. I can trust it and allow the cam era to record what. I see what I couldn't see. when I develop them in Photoshop. Some found them to be to sensual and erotic. They were overwhelming.VISION & PERCEPTION When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it. O'Keeffe's her large canvases of flowers seen closeup shocked and scand alized the public and the critics. People simply had not seen flowers closeup. the photographer and gallery owner Steiglitz cautioned her against exhi biting them. Perception and seeing are two distinct. When I stare through my camera viewfinder and carefully view the scene with my normal mind. it s your world for want to give that world to someone else. Later. O'keeffe let herself be seen. Our perceptions. intuitive vision or no-mind se es something else. sizes and shapes. I want them to see it want to or not. when the images are downloaded into the com puter. GEORGIA O KEEFFE. I rush around whether they
. like our dr eams. Most people in the city so. I cannot see what it sees at that moment. come in many colors. an d for a woman that was too remarkable. My perception. to my eye. Her avantegarde husband. she her hand and holding it closer to her face. my unconscious. Our lifelong work consists of allowing these swarms of per ceptions to said. they have no time to look at a flower.
This is the beginning of wisdom.surface. Entangled among the exuberant growth and ravishing colors we find sing le images which delight us with their quiet and repose. Such vision never diminishes. miraculous world around us.. in the m idst of chaos.
. to unveil themselves in the light. like a Titan's garden filled with luxuriant brilliant weeds a nd gaudy flowers. of seeing the ever changing. Nothing is banne d. It only grow s wilder and more colorful. order shimmers through and we are comforted. Wisdom entails sifting all experien ce through an uncensored sieve of unconscious desires and playful freedom. In the midst of wildness.
BIV. Since this narrow band of wavelengths is the means by which humans see. and violet (V). It is because of this that visible light is sometimes referred to as ROY G. The visible
. The longer wavelength. for these reasons.ADDENDUM: THE VISIBLE SPECTRUM We see only a small portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Isaac Newton showed that light shining through a prism will be separated into its different wavelengths and will thus show the various colors that visible light is comprised of. You may read the following explanation if you wish or go on. Though electromagnetic waves exist in a vast range of wavelengths. You are undoubtedly familiar with some of the different regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Each individual wavelength within the spectrum of visible light wavelengths is representative of a particular color. The red wavelengths of light are the longer wavelengths and the violet wavelengths of light are the shorter wavelengths. The entire range of the spectrum is often broken into specific regions." we are referring to a type of electromagnetic wave which stimulates the retina of our eyes. Each color is characteristic of a distinct wavelength. Electromagnetic waves exist with an enormous range of frequencies. orange (O). we are referring to visible light. a small spectrum of the range of frequencies of electromagnetic radiation. higher frequency regions are on the far right. Normally when we use the term "light. visible light is dispersed upon passage through a prism. Between red and violet. Dispersion of visible light produces the colors red (R). lower frequency regions are located on the far left of the spectrum and the shorter wavelength. our eyes are sensitive to only a very narrow band. blue (B). there is a continuous range or spectrum of wavelengths. The visible light region is the very narrow band of wavelengths located to the right of the infrared region and to the left of the ultraviolet region. The separation of visible light into its different colors is known as dispersion. Two very narrow regions with the spectrum are the visible light region and the X-ray region. In this sense. we perceive that specific color sensation. The subdividing of the entire spectrum into smaller spectra is done mostly on the basis of how each region of electromagnetic waves interacts with matter. indigo (I). we refer to it as the visible light spectrum. Colors that we do n ot see are visible to other creatures on this earth. green (G). and different wavelengths of light waves will bend varying amounts upon passage through a prism. That is. when light of that particular wavelength strikes the retina of our eye. The diagram below depicts the electromagnetic spectrum and its various regions. This continuous range of frequencies is known as the electromagnetic spectrum. yellow (Y).
. author Herrigel speaks of his mast er constantly referring to archery as a dance.light spectrum is shown in the diagram below when all the wavelengths of the visible light spectrum strike your eye at the same time. Once more. So when you are in a room with no lights and everything around you appears black. then none of the wavelengths would lead to the appearance of black. white is not a color at all. white is perceived. black is not actually a color. We use our intuitive no-mind and Zen like clairvoyance. The visible an d invisible rainbows of the electromagnetic spectrum are our lives. but rather the combination of all the colors of the visible light spectrum. If all the wavelengths of the visible ligh t spectrum give the appearance of white. Technically speaking. black is merely the absence of the wavelengths of the visible light spectrum.com Shall we dance? In Zen & the Art of Archery . Light is the great est dancer. We see al l of the invisible spectrum of light which daily dances through our lives. visible light is sometimes referred to as white light. The archer dances his shots. We dance with light to the farthest reaches of human perception and understanding. it means that there are no wavelengths of visible light striking your eye as you sight at the surroundings. Thus. physicsclassroom. Technically speaking. We see what is not there.
. we encounter a pivotal time. "Every knock is a boost. we undergo a rite of passage. or back down the mountain. te dium overtakes the climber in pursuit of meaning and creative growth. A mountain climber trapped above twenty to twenty-five thousand feet or higher mus t come down for oxygen soon or deteriorate and die. self-examination. Each new peak we attain reveals views of other heretofore hidden heigh ts. Our growth and perception never ends. The body. when the future beckons tantalizingly and everything is possible. Perhaps "desert" is simply a staging ground. The best. has a curve of accomplishment: the beginning. every campaign to acquire new knowledge. and the will to make the desert flower. must rest from other necessary and tiresome labors unrelated to growth and creat ing. I believe every great enterprise. At certain periods in our creative lives. success or failure." So it is. It's too easy to begin an enterprise with innocent enthusiasm and passion. the greate st creativity. Moses spent forty years in the desert an d never reached the promised land. most sanguine and felicitous parts of novels and movies often occur in the first half when striving is all. enjoy the view! The next step must be to another. hard work. having reached a peak. higher peak. youthfulness in ideas and in the work itself is everyth ing . A jazz singer on FM radio the other day sang a refrai n. a metaph or for the next great endeavour. Often.AD ASTRA (Art is Worth Dying For) I believe we go through an endless series of births and rebirths during our tenu re and growth on this earth. like the brain feeds upon itself. especially if it knocks us up and away from our pre conceptions. Rest and recuperation is needed before another attempt is possible. He or she. Once a challengin g peak is climbed. the winding and endless road to knowledge is o ur home. beginning again. Like life itself.
Forward. When the idea is new. We must disenthrall ourselves. and act anew. and we must rise with the occasion. The occasion is piled high with difficulty. As our case is new. "Audace. audace. so we must think anew. and then we shall save our country. The workaday "nitty gritty" conspires to shackle our talents. cold harness of tasks better left to career administrators. Something must be done about them. and if need be. Life demands action. Shed it ! We must each take our inspired and abundant creative talent and free it from the itchy. We must act f orcefully before the routine and tedium of endless petty details despoil our dreams and de feat our ends. Ideas won't keep. die for it. its custodians have fervor and live for it. "disenthrall ourselves" and move on to fresh. ideas won't wait. fecun d fields where new ideas may glisten in the dawn of new endeavors like early morning dew on flowers and grass. We must. We must send them roaming.
. audace" cried de Gaulle.The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. LIGHT THE SKY The vitality of thoughts is in adventure. always forward. Lincoln's Second Annual Message to Congress. in Lincoln's words.
talent. If not. suc h aspirations. seek and find venues that need. great energy. to make us know that? To make us know that placed here willy-nilly on this spinning globe that sometimes seems like the Sea of Fertility on the moon a nihilistic wast eland. we have purpose. Shouldn't we spend our time working on projects that illuminat e the darkness. We must unleash our God given extraord inary abilities and free them to race across the sky like the Sun God's fiery steeds. s oul wrenching awareness of the cascading beauty and symbolism of life itself? Whatever you can or want to do -Begin it! Boldness has genius. We set out. and we are not alone ?
. a ghostly apparition in an unblinking cosmos that here on this speck of green earth whirling round a small sun. --GOETHE WE ARE NOT ALONE In the movie Shadowlands. we wither in a stale environment where b ean counters rule and dreams die slowly and painfully. aflame with light. Lewis speaks an idea gar nered from a student. color and beauty. which. indeed demand." Isn't that the purpose of al l of art and creation. Great talent. smothers the world of new ideas an d visions? Shouldn't we work on enterprises that wash away gloom and give birth to a new. "We read to know we are not alone. Anthony Hopkins playing C. great ambitions crave great projects. Power and Magic In it. S. free will. that contain great challenges and require facilities to implement t hem on a grand and worthy scale.ALFRED NORTH WHITEHEAD Everyone of us is an untapped reservoir of becoming. like a blanket of oily soot.
dreams that make life real. We are born to fly. We are all poe ts at heart. not grunt. never the end. Our dreams arise from inspiration. The man's lot is to live his human life. to sally forth into the universes of thought and action. to setting off o n another voyage into the unknown? Odyssus set sail again in search of new worlds after he regained his kingdom Ithaca. but as the fires of volcanoes re new the earth. What pleas ure compares to a new creative challenge. love and creation. we read of Odysseus. to f ly on wings of thought to far reaches of the planet and to the ends of the universe. in the cellars of misers and bean counters. We were born to inhabit and create on a planet so fair and beautiful that "heave n" is but a solipsism and a mockery of Paradise here and now The poet begins where the man ends. not crawl. What can the vintner buy one half so
precious as what he sells?" We are fortune's vintners pressing dreams from dew c overed
. our efforts our lives. Passion and joy rule our lives. to the renewal of youthful dreams. to crawl. Very little of value may be found betwee n. ORTEGA Y GASSET. Without passion we create grey slag heaps of time worn existence. or sadly. THE WINE OF PASSION We read in Omar Khayyum's poem The Rubiyat . We must protect the God given flame of inspiration ere it flickers out i n the temples of money changers. to dance. our dest inations are our inspiration. not recklessly. What can the vintner buy one half so
precious as what he sells?" We are fortune's vintners pressing dreams from dew c overed grapes. in the offices of bureaucrats. The Dehumanization of Art We read in Omar Khayyum's poem The Rubiyat .Enjoy life? Of course! We are born to sing. "My voyages are my Ithaca. the poet's to invent what is non-existent. the sole elements that conspire to make us more than slouching beasts. Always the journey." We work to display the joy of what we create each day and each day is our reward. In Nikos Kazantzakis's great poem The Odyssey. A Modern Sequ el . moral and cultural values.
W e seek the
. We are all poe ts at heart. in the cellars of misers and bean counters. We must protect the God given flame of inspiration ere it flickers out i n the temples of money changers. but as the fires of volcanoes re new the earth. not recklessly. in the offices of bureaucrats. Passion and joy rule our lives. moral and cultural values. love and creation. ORTEGA Y GASSET. but rise to snow peaked mountains towering into the next world. the poet's to invent what is non-existent. the sole elements that conspire to make us more than slouching beasts. Without passion we create grey slag heaps of time worn existence.grapes. We were born to inhabit and create on a planet so fair and beautiful that "heave n" is but a solipsism and a mockery of Paradise here and now The poet begins where the man ends. dreams that make life real. The Dehumanization of Art LONG AND HARD ARE THE SKY ROADS Our creative desires and endeavors must not be reduced to shopping malls of clev er exhibits and boutiques. Our dreams arise from inspiration. The man's lot is to live his human life.
a fiery grace that lights the world. the pai ntings of Van Gogh. but hard and lon g are the sky roads and many are those who would tame the spirits that ride with the chari ot of the sun god. From modesty comes grace. It is the wonderful kindness. No power must come between that holy gift and the expression of it for the joy of mankind. bewildered or chastened. must never bow to the whiplash of bureaucracy or cries for what is politically correct. the sound of wind and wave and rain. T he artist. We embrace the human ability to rise to an occasion. The true artist. our hearts filled with the sheer exuberance of liberation liberation of our uncanny abilities to grow and flower in the commonplace wastelands of over civilized cit ified cultures. the uncanny beauty of worlds in collision. the seeker of the way of art. pinnacles and arches in the Southwest. sculpture and science. to shed light. they are
. surrounded by paved roads. see-er or seeker creates and grows because he or she is creation itself. concre te and glass. the grand architectonic "musical" forms of canyons. I add the caveat that art i s .unknown. to make life worthwhile. our minds that will not age unless left idle. Matisse. it is the artist himself or herself who mu st discern what really matters. ART MAKES US MORE HUMAN We stand measured by the breadth of our expanding souls. places wher e human beings embrace mother Gaea with innocence and praise her. de Kooning. music that comes from Bach in the B minor Mass or from th e dying Schubert in the late piano sonatas. Basquiat. I often encounter this dawn roaming the earth into "primitive" places. we must find our way back to that exuberant dawn of innocence and spiritu al dignity. the sculpture of Moore. What else compares with the experience of art itself? All of art. I do not ignore the ap palling poverty and misery found in many undeveloped and developing countries. or an audience that must be enlightened. explored and made real. Removed from our close contact with the earth. flaming nebulae millions of light years a way. I believe the sometimes hidden purpose of all art is to raise the level of the viewer's perceptions. to welcome discoveries. it is not made for any decreed purpose. wisdom and hospitality of so many peoples that I speak of. however new and bold. Such enterprises can be found. the art of mus ic and dance. Brancusi or Rodin. It is not a viewer.
when trees suddenly bud and flowers bl oom out of
. the Muslims. Better to leave the dilapidated train. SPRINGTIME IN DECEMBER Every formula which express a law of nature is a hymn to God. or anyo ne's search for religious meaning in symbols or saints. to see . forever hastening to those places which capture our hearts. All of art and science beckons to human beings to look. We will come to know again the joyful springtime that comes unexpecte d and radiant late in autumn or dead of winter. to discover that we are not alone. sing to our souls and reward us with innocence. the Buddhists. Hard it is to wrench oneself from th e turmoil of self-created "necessary" mundane projects whose momentum. to touch. like a speeding freigh t train is difficult to stop and makes a great screeching and squawking when slowed. and yes to going forward! I make no difference between the God of the Christians. launch.one and the same. fly to the places and palaces we dream of . yes to the creative mind. the Jews. rocket off. to hear. lARIA MITCHELL Yes to that hymn.
an insolent mouthpiece for Gaea. October is the fallen leaf. else it is a lesser life) to stri ve and seek a distant shore unmapped. There is no end to energy. Prometheus. an unlicensed oracle. uncharted and unbounded. We were born to inhabit this halcy on paradise of earth while we live (living means creating. daring and beautiful. Our nascent light must not set in darkening shadows of discontent. If we be favored by the gods with energy. energy which is eternal del ight in Blake's words. Great deeds begin with a multitude of tedious details which may seem to deny the light of creation from rising each mo rning like the sun. but it is also a horizon more clearly seen. It is th e distant hills once more in sight and the enduring constellations above them once again. a labor fit for Hercules. We must avoid
. Then we may give thanks and praise and rejoice in the knowledge that we are forever young. Aphrodite or Apollo in a flourishing civilization where greed and lu st for power often overshadow humanity's long journey to the stars. Autumn is for Understanding FOR THE HAPPY FEW (OR MANY) We all may share the blessed lifelong burden of creating and loving. HAL BORLAND . I am a lover and a fool. a cracked bell. or be ma de unbearable by puerile and punitive endeavors. then we must and shall employ i t for the good of the earth insofar as we are capable of understanding that good. I will sing of joy.season.
Art is the religion of the spirit and the relig ion of the deepest unconscious striving of the fecund but tip of evolution. It is the business of the future t o be dangerous. We work. brained and blessed to do Gaea's great bidding. for the hap py few. if thou hast understanding. Who will or can stand with the Lord in his place and listen to his words? I neither mock nor defile any religion nor use the cantos of praise other than wit h respect and joy for spiritual enlightenment..making godlike judgements as to what is good. Art is evolutions' way of knowing herself. Nothing else or less will do. said Alfred North Whitehead. green and gratifying earth. We bring to Gaea (and Gaea is God and earth and holy) all that she is and wants to be and we cann ot help ourselves. ever flabbergasting. and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
. We toil for the coming happy many who seek what we seek. Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare. We were born. the thrice blessed godl y virtue of questioning. WHO WILL STAND? We happy see-ers.. in Stendahl's words. ever new. "blind" and dreaded. We toil to give form and space and song to what has not been seen e nough before. seekers and seers who fiercely create and bring these shatteri ng and seductive visions to light shall be as prophets of old.When the morning stars sang together. the burgeoning glory of an ever fecund. g lorious. We toil because we must.
Let your light so shine before men. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. joyfully. the voice in the wilderness soon forgotten. the teachings remain. Christian.. With zeal. We must follow our hearts no matter where. Shinto .--THE BIBLE . Neit her do men light a candle. but on a candlestick. a tintinnabulatio n of ringing bells to fill the mountain steeps with echoes of glory. Jew. and it give light unto all that are in the house. *Ye are the light of the world. Gaea 's legions. inspirati on and courage we do the bidding of gods and spirits. a great jazz in the night. THE SERMON OF CREATION Is not all of art and science part of that great sermon? Is not the act of creat ing art the same act of reverence as lighting a candle? Isn't a human being born to create those things which glorify the Father whether He or She be Buddhist. t hat they may see your good works. the legions of creativity. jubilantly.
. Job XXXVIII Open the gates for we are as sounding brass. Moslem. and glorify your Father which is in heaven.. Father. the army of the Lord of hosts. audacity. love and compassion. The sermon on the mount* goes un heeded. and put it under a bushel. a mighty work which make this planet a va ulted heaven where mortals convene and converse with gods.
the mist shrouded lighthouse w hose radiant beams illuminate a thousand.worshipper of Mother Earth or earth spirits? Bach loved the Father as he loved l ife itself. It is sometimes hard to keep my eye on the holy beacon of creative enrichment. from the spirit and from the love of life i s holy. CREATION'S STARRY LIGHTHOUSE A wanderer on this earth. Bach's mus ic. to seek. the light that is God. Bach. we undertake to make a world more fit for humanity's great mission. Starry eyed. discovery and enlightenment. the light of God. to make a world where art and love blossom li ke cactus flowers in vast deserts of ignorance. to celebrate the earth. the Zen monk's traditional shakuhachi flute meditations or any other glorious religious music celebrates the light. as a sky flowering lightning and rainbow s. shamans. as the Buddhist monk loves the Eightfold Path and the Four Noble Truths. I witness the seemingly endless striving of fecund hum anity to break the shackles of earthbound tedium. to fin d. no dry fugu e maker. thousand deadly reefs and shoals in a world often gone mad. Art which comes from the heart. from the soul. filled with zeal and energy . We stand together with artists and scientist s.. to know. was as passionate as a water lily in the dawn. Each new challenge begins in innocence.
. to understand.
memento mori of that place from which we came. Hath had elsewhere its setting. the dregs of futile toil. like fragrant wildflowers. the radiant ge nesis of glory. Ode on Intimations of Immortality. Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting: The Soul that rises with us. Yet.. smothering sarcophaguses fil led with overripe. We carry our heads high in the myriad constellations of glitte ring stars." The ent ire Ode spirals down to us like a glittering nebulae. a star swathed cradle of innocence. The art's the thing. And time will come close about me.. And not in utter nakedness. In his monumental poem. Wordsworth bemoaned the seeming loss of his own innocenc e. And always I shall feel time ravel thin about me. our life's star. Our gifts. voyages into the unknown. a quasar billions of light years away shed ding the radiance of a giant collapsing star. voyages away from stuffy. shades of the prison house closing in. yield love potions we toast to the glory of the earth. we shape the world we inhabit. For once I stood In the white windy presence of eternity. for we contain in our mortal bodies the whirling troposphere of lightning and great storms. of glory in the flower . whose lives become voyages. not measured out like cold coins or lifeless currency. he saw shadows. Our labors flower and bear fr uits in their season. --WORDSWORTH . The fruit of our endeavors. his great lament " Though no thing can bring back the hour/Of splendour in the grass. rotting fruit. make beautiful so lace for a moment of rapture. And cometh from afar: Nor in entire forgetfulness. We stand beside all who seek to know. who is our home. life will not press so close. having known. EUNICE TIETJENS
. and my soul stir to the rhythm of the daily round.. But trailing clouds of glory do we come From God.preachers and prophets..
we are at play in fertile fields filled with spring freshets and flowers. Age cannot wither her. but as naifs. never from the adulation of media. nor custom stale/Her infinite variety. and the seemingly dangerous. one head older than creation. Not as solons in the great courts of k ings. "success" imprisons us in a grey claustrophobic. m isbegotten misinterpretation of the meaning of life.. the enigmatic. the cycles of the seasons of art th at bestow everlasting youth. innocent and filled with joy at what we do not know y et yearn to know..she makes hungry where most she satisfies." --SHAKESPEARE . Antony and Cleopatra
. conquerors or emperors. the adoration of power and money.. the glory of the earth. Only constant change and growth fuel the engine of creating the new. We will trail clouds of glory as long as we forbear yielding to money-grubbing temptations. Ours is the earth and all that's in it. We attain our births and rebirths.. growing and crea ting. defeats our aims.SUCCESS HAS TWO FACES "Success" that duplicitous Janus-like goddess. One head eterna lly young. True success comes from our joy of learning. the tinsel worship of celebrities.
man thinks yet he does not think.he knows h imself to be the master of his days. Albert Camus wr ote in The Myth of Sisyphus that There is no sun without shadow. he is the showers. and it is essential to know the night. Then this is attained. the foliage.. like legendary Sisyphus. We begin anew each time. gaining mountain tops. We are one with earth. writer and Zen philosopher D. renew as do the elements and the seasons. seeking new visions. T. Suzuki said: Man is a thinking reed but his great works are done when he is not calculating and thinking. He thinks like the showers coming down from the sky... he thinks like the stars illuminating the nightly heavens. "Childlikeness" has to be restored with long years of training in the art of self-forgetfulness. often must push a heavy rock up a steep mountain path to the top. . Indeed. he thinks like the green foliage shooting forth in the relaxing spring breeze.
. only to watch it roll back down again.A THINKING REED A creative human being. the stars. In his introduction to Zen and the Art o f Archery . starting over. the ocean. happy in the knowledge that such efforts renew. he thinks like the waves rolling on the ocean. The absurd man says yes and his efforts will henceforth be unceasing.
A cold blue sky over Manhatta n turns slowly pink. help define us as human beings. It is Sunday in winter. to add music to the earth. and. eternal themes. a s Job endured the trials of the Lord. To be an artist is to fail as no other dares to fail. i f we are willing to burn for it.IMMORTALITY OR BURN Therein "ends" this essay. thousand lights glitter in the dusk. rainbow spattered dream s. The themes of this essay. desertion. We have but one overriding duty in life. We must endure. confront the perplexing mystery of life it self. to develop our powers to the utmost lim its in order to be of use to others and to ourselves. Whatever blocks our way must be rent asunder. into whirling butterflies and birds of paradise to float out into the great world beyond my sm all studio. Tomorrow I confront the d aily exigencies of city life. arts and crafts. and to shrink from it. the creative life with its thousand broken idols and masks. its thousand fears and follies. A thousand. which. as the Red Sea parted for Moses. we will have it. They ask us to consider what our presence on this small green and lovely planet means. SAMUEL BECKETT
. I must conspire to make illusive vagaries. good housekeeping. to shed light. T hese themes flaunt fields of eternal energy. whirling and sparkling like the vast sta r studded hoop of our galaxy. for in the end. we were born to radiance. that failure is his world.
.. Go where the wind blows. still untapped reservoirs of talent.Postscript: LIBERATE THE UNIVERSE WITHIN What should I or you or anyone do? Only those difficult.. Become as one who midwives and creates things yet unknown. and the baths of all the western stars. 'tis not too late to seek a newer world. for my purpose holds to sail beyond the sunset. passionate and intransi gent things which can and will fulfill our dreams. unleash ourselves from petty ideas... Come my friends.. for it will blow a fair wind. Seek and find a place in th e sun that understands and strengthens far reaching vision and reinforces your inner search for deep. housekeeping and clinging needs of those who must yet be inspired. Perform as one who inspires others to go be yond their self imposed limits. unbind our limitless creative powers. We must freely and fruitfully undertake p rojects that involve great energies. unseen.