There are thousands of movies. There are thousands of recorded songs. In a normal lifetime you will have watched and listened to millions of media moments. They are all embedded in your memory. There’s no need to try hard to remember them all, because the moment you hear a riff from a familiar song, hear a line from a familiar poem, or a quote from a book, or get a glimpse from a familiar scene, the whole emotional impact of that media moment returns. No wonder we say, a picture is worth a thousand words: ART has the ability to paint pictures in our souls, pictures that are never forgotten, pictures that are really “snapshots” of our personal philosophy of life.
Have you ever been asked to explain your own personal philosophy of life? Perhaps you are well-educated and can describe yourself as a hedonist or pragmatist, or any one of a dozen other such names. But most of us can’t pinpoint one philosophy that can describe everything we believe about life. Pin-pointing an intellectual position isn’t easy! And yet our reactions to real-life situations and our own “likes” and “dislikes” tell more about us than any intellectual position we may take. That’s because our hearts are more honest than our heads. Our heart is our “innermost man”, what we are “deep inside”. Our heart is what most men and women throughout history have called the soul. Our souls are the intangible part of ourselves. We are all composed of a body, a mind, and a soul (or heart), and the heart believes things long before the head can explain them. That’s why we all believe there’s GOT to be more to life than what we can see. Our hearts tell us this even when our heads can’t explain it.
Am I suggesting that you follow your heart and not your head?
No. I’m suggesting you follow both. People who follow ONLY their heart often cannot explain their journey. They may have arrived at all the right conclusions, but they can’t explain how they got there. People who follow only their head will not believe in anything that can’t be explained. Try to explain LOVE, or the AFTERLIFE. The head reduces love to chemical interactions, and the afterlife to psychotic hallucinations. But the heart refuses to believe that life is nothing more than the survival of the fittest molecules.
How do I know this? Because I watch the reactions of people to art, and literature, and music, and film, and I notice that people are stirred in their hearts about things they sometimes can’t explain with their heads. They love certain movies or certain songs, even when they can’t explain why. I believe it’s because the artists and the actors are stirring up circumstances and situations which people instinctively sense are true and real, even though they may be hard to explain.
Does this mean that most people are living in a fantasy world? I believe it means that most people want something out of life that “real life” doesn’t seem to provide. Isn’t that strange? How can a soul want something that supposedly doesn’t exist?
The answer is, “because each of us is programmed with a desire for the perfect life.” The program draws us towards reconciling all the conflicts of life, towards an ultimate solution which the heart knows is out there somewhere, even when the head may be convinced that it isn’t.
You may have followed some philosophical or scientific or religious system, looking for the perfect life. Perhaps you’ve found what you believe is the ultimate answer. If you have, that’s wonderful. But if you’ve searched for answers through all the regular routes and still haven’t found them yet, let me challenge you to try a different method.
Why don’t you follow your heart AND your head? Start with your heart. You heart senses when there is something significant in the path of your life. Your heart alerts you to “dig here!” You may not even be able to explain what or why you are feeling. For some reason you sense there’s something important about a certain event, or a certain idea in a book , or a certain scene in a movie. Your heart tells you this, and that’s why it becomes a “favorite”. You may not be able to explain why, all you know is that there is an odd sort of illumination telling you to PAY ATTENTION, to FOCUS. We describe such times or events as “something told me“. Morpheus (in the MATRIX) calls it “a splinter in your mind.”
What am I suggesting?
Well, try this. Take a little trip on the wild side and read a sample ANALOGY. I’ve got THREE samples posted already and I am preparing to post a host of others. For instance, I’ve got the MATRIX ANALOGIES, DISTRICT 9 ANALOGIES, and MARGIN CALL ANALOGIES. Start with any them that pique your interest. These are not movie reviews. I am not a film critic. I’m simply suggesting that the things that piqued your interest in any of these three films piqued your interest for a reason. Your HEART told you there’s something significant here, and all I’m trying to show you is that there’s a reason your heart drew you to them. There’s a rational reason for why your heart was stirred.
One word of caution. Your HEAD can shut down your HEART. In your HEAD you may already have a bias against a particular explanation or philosophy of life. You may have a bias against a particular philosophical or religious explanation. You HEAD will not allow you to go where your mind’s already made up. That’s why an ANALOGY is so effective. An analogy allows you to reconsider a position that you have a bias against, because an analogy approaches the topic from a completely different direction. You can’t have a bias against something you’ve never considered before.
The reason I’ve posted this 1001 page is to try to show you how that any place where your heart was touched is the place where you stand to make the most progress in the matter of your philosophy of life. Don’t be intimidated by the intellectual crowd who want you to decide your philosophy by taking Philosophy 101. Ultimately your philosophy of life will come naturally when your heart and your head are completely satisfied. There is an answer, a perspective, that reconciles all the conflicts, and your heart has been drawing you towards that answer since the day you were born.
Life is too complicated to be defined by any one of the traditional “philosophies”. The truth about life has always been available to all people who really want to find it. The answer isn’t hidden, it’s as plain as the nose on your face, it’s just that it’s buried in mountains of “professional” opinions, a “wall” of words. As Roger Waters of Pink Floyd once wrote, “all in all, it’s just bricks in the Wall.”
You are already closer than you think to the ultimate answer. You’ve just got to look past the bricks that are blocking the view. ANALOGYMAN is designed to help you do that.