If you want to learn the truth of something imagine looking at it from the side you can't see.
I used this idea once before, about 2 years ago. I don't remember what I wrote about and can't find that entry at the moment. But I'm a bit older and wiser(?) now.
I know I wrote about my great drawing teacher Gregory DiLessio, who one day had us draw the model as if we were seeing her from the opposite side of the room. It was a very tricky exercise. I was seeing her from the side so it wasn't that hard. I can't imagine what it was like for those seeing her from the back.
When it comes to politics, religion and social issues I read what those I disagree with write and say and respectfully try to imagine seeing the issues from the opposing point of view. It's just as tricky as the drawing exercise.
But now I've assumed another level of that exercise. From the smug anti-narcissistic practice of standing in my own shadow, I now contemplate myself in my mental mirror and wonder, and try to imagine what I look like from the other side. I want to know who the invisible individual is, the one not made of skin, eyes, tongue, organs, blood and bones. Who is the individual of pure spirit, of pure idea? When the mortality is dropped and let go off, when the old man is put off, what is the new man, the man that has always been there but who has been covered by the imperfect.
In simpler life forms the root, stem and blossom of the flower may easily and gracefully collide with it's real, invisible being. In art the human figure may be defined by the important parts of the figure, the cranium, rib cage, pelvis and the legs, arms and jaw attached to it. But it is the real story, the invisible story of that figure that the artist tries to capture in his drawing. or painting.
I try to look past the mask I see in my mirror and imagine what I look like from the face that is looking back at me, the nonmaterial, unsubstantial face. What invisible figure is apparent, beyond age, race and gender, beyond limitations. fantasies and illusions.
I think the secret is not in us but beyond us, on the other side of us. I look at other people and know there is a spiritual creature there not represented by the human figure I see. Who are the substantial ones, those I see on the street or those I see in my dreams?
I was told by my family that "light" was the very first word I uttered in the wisdom of my infancy. Creation begins with light. And then what follows, love (in its universal sense), power, joy?
After all these many decades I begin to see only slight slivers of light, but enough to tell me it's there. I continue to look for it in myself and in all those I meet and know, because I must.
DB - The Vagabond
(This is not a contest.)
At what event of the past do you wish you could be present? Why?
1 response so far.