Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Duality, Self-Awareness, and The Anti-Spotless Mind

Last night I went to a movie by myself, and I believe that's the first time I've ever done that. Oh well, this summer is a summer of firsts...but that's not where I'm going with this post.

Movie prices are getting ridiculous, but that's not where I'm going, either.

I paid the required $8.50 to see the movie that I had heard nothing but good reviews for but had never been able to see, called Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Check out an MSN Review for a synopsis of the plot. It stars Jim Carey and Kate Winslett, and it is one of the best movies I have ever seen. See it.

I am fascinated with the concepts of memory, and the past, and how integral each is to who I am today. I think individuals are 100% their past experiences while at the same time 100% their future. I know what you're saying: "You idiot, that's 200%! Unless we each are two people, what you just said is mathematically impossible!" Ever heard of duality? Humans will never understand duality, because of their simple mathematical brains which will repeatedly conclude that 1+1 will never equal 1. But sometimes this statement is in fact true, even in science, in the case of the wave-particle duality.

In any case, in the movie Carey attempts to have the memory of his failed relationship with Winslett erased from his memory. But as the process is actually occurring, Carey finds himself in a sort of lucid dream-like state, going backwards through his memories...re-living them. He is smart enough (or in love enough) to realize early on what is happening. Eventually, he reaches the memories of Clementine (Winslett) that he suddenly recognizes are essential to his entire being, and to take those memories away would be to, in effect, kill a large part of what his soul has become as a result of countless moments of supreme connection with Clementine...moments when nothing else in the world moments...perfect moments. I mentioned in a previous post that a perfect moment is one in which you are certain that there is no other moment that you could possibly be within.

What I loved about the movie was how it illustrated the importance of others, and their love, in the development of an individual. The truth, I believe, is that individuality is inherent within each human. Self awareness is the consciousness of one's individuality. Personally, however, my self awareness has been spurred by the realization of how others saw me. Somewhere along the line I realized that a few very special people were able to see me the way I wanted people to see me. Actually, it was then that I realized that there was a specific way that I wanted people to see me. This way in which you would like people to see you is your inherent individuality--it is how you want people to see you because it is how you see yourself. It is your self-awareness.

I guess the point is that while there may be "Eternal Sunshine for the Spotless Mind"--that is, the mind that has not ever been modified by the influence of the love, ideas, and perspectives of others--this "eternal sunshine" is quite simply only the bliss of ignorance. It is other individuals who are the catalysts--they are attractive force that pull individuality and self-awareness from the depths of souls. But while it is others who bring out one's own self-awareness, one cannot forget that at the same time he or she is helping others realize their own. Its a deeply reciprocal process. Once you learn to truly love the growing individuality of others, it is then that you are ready to love your own. IndiviDUALITY. That's why the girl on the train was so quick to love that little boy.

Now I look at each day as another opportunity to meet other individuals and to establish relationships, whether they be long-lasting relationships or 10 minute relationships, as in the one that little boy had with the girl with sad eyes. Sometimes these 5 and 10 minute relationships can be almost as important to one's individuality as a lifelong relationship, in that they might show you something that you've never seen before. In any case, each new relationship sheds light onto new ways of thinking and approaching life. These new ways do not cloud your uniqueness, they can only enhance it.


At June 29, 2004 at 5:27 PM, Blogger colderwater said...

just a quick side note - you can get a student discount at the movie theaters downtown - that'll make it a little bit better - 6 something i think. anyway, just thought you'd like to know

At October 2, 2005 at 3:14 AM, Blogger Bud Wiser said...

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