What makes us who we are?
The renowned physicist Brian Greene recently wrote a piece in the New York Times addressing why art matters. He concludes:
“Whereas the patterns of math and science matter because they speak to qualities of reality that exist beyond us, the patterns of art matter because they speak to qualities of reality that exist within us.”
I found it interesting that a scientist like Greene acknowledges that both the subjective “within us” and the objective “beyond us” matter. It’s my view that meaning arises from the interplay between the two.
I have to admit I spend way more time on external vs. internal realities. I don’t think I’m alone.
Our desire to control external events creates a lot of stress. Wildcards like Covid are an accelerant. News and social media fan the flames. “Dis-ease” is increasing.
I am an audio enthusiast. Recently, I read a discussion thread in an on-line forum that got ugly and personal over disagreements on the circuit design of audio components. What? The forum was supposed to be about sharing the enjoyment of recorded music! It seems like anger levels are rising all around us.
Maybe we should redirect some of our pent up frustration towards improving the quality of our inner being?
I have a good friend who is adamantly opposed to the expression of negative thoughts because she believes thoughts condense into realities. I am beginning to think she’s right.
If we took responsibility for our thoughts, how might things change? Most of us watch our diet and engage in some form of exercise to maintain physical health. What if we placed equal attention on inner health?
I decided to conduct a personal experiment on that notion.
Most days, I take an hour-long walk around the neighborhood. It can be pretty boring. Lately, I’ve started listening to “uplifting” podcasts that present an optimistic view of life.
The time zips by, and I am left with a positive feeling.
I’m calling the experiment a success.
What if we replaced an hour of news or social media with thirty minutes of inspiration on a daily basis? Technology makes it easy to do, perhaps at the gym or while driving.
Inner quality matters. If we can improve that, perhaps external realities will improve as well.
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