Tag Archives: perception

Skewed View

via Daily Prompt: Skewed

IMG_2718.jpg

The gorge at Tjukurla last July. A precious water hole for the community here since time began, for the white explorers like Ernest Giles an age ago, and now more a wonderful place to visit, as we all did.

When white settlers arrived on the shores of Australia, they immediately began to move into the interior, exploring for possible farm lands, minerals, and for building community. Immediate impressions were bleak, explorers often commenting on the harshness of the bush, the lack of water, the heat in summer, overall, the bush was perceived as harsh and dangerous. Some, like the Burke and Wills expedition (1860) from Melbourne to Carpentaria, saw all but one of the seven team members perish.

But if you read Australia’s expedition history you quickly discover that, though Australia’s bush is indeed a harsh environ, human error accounts for most of the deaths of exploreers. Their perception of the bush skewed the reality. The proof of this is that for milennia Australia’s indigenous people thrived in these very inerior spaces. Spaces like Tjukurla where water, wildlife and vegetation, were available, and so it was possible to live in these spaces, if you but understood the how of these spaces. Australian Aboriginal people knew how, over centuries of experience they knew what to do and how to do it. For them the land was not hostile but friend, not harsh, but purposeful. Theirs was a life living in seasonal rhythm, in harmony with the elements, with respect for all life, with intimate knowledge. They understood the feel of the land, its formation and power. They only took what was necessary for all, their ethic was shared space.

If only we’d bothered to look with their eyes and heart, if only we’d taken time to understand. A perception of harshness leads to negative response, distrust leads to disrespect, a disregard for the vast yet fragile environ. Ownership individualises every experience and leads to conquest, even of each other, and nothing is shared, only despair.

Aboriginal life is testimony to how skewed white understanding of the land and community has been.

Fortunately the tide has begun to turn and we are learning from our indigenous their ways of valuing nature and community, ways that will enable us to battle global warming, climate change and all that is ill in our land. They lived without us for milenia, they didn’t need us, but we sure do need them.

The gorge at Tjurkula is proof that the bush is tough, but yet yielding, in the midst of hard granite, sandstone, and dry earth lies precious and life-giving water. The water sustains wildlife and plants, and gives life to all.

I sometimes see that that is how we are meant to be, life giving into our world.

Paul,

pvcann.com

 

 

 

17 Comments

Filed under bush walking, Country, environment, history, life, mindfulness, nature

It’s A Fact!

Fact

fact.jpeg

(poster from planetofthevapes.com)

Is it really a fact? Fact can be slippery. The real conundrum is that fact doesn’t necessarily means true.

Science rigorously tests and peer reviews, and arrives at a fact, but does not rest with that, it continues to test and review and analyse, recognising that a scientific fact is still open to challenge, it may be true today but not tomorrow when we have more data, more evidence. In the past century Newton’s laws have been adjusted, modified and reapplied.

In a more general sense fact is often confused with opinion, personal understanding, perception, expectation, belief, and so on. Do we rigorously wrestle with our inner issues and perceptions? Do we adjust and revisit our beliefs and views? When do we refelct and enable ourselves some self-awareness, or even invite the refelctions of others? Our inner world needs to accomodate the outer world as an experience that cannot be completely ignored, and we need to enable ourselves opportunity for growth and development, and not least – to be able to flourish. But even more than that, the space to dream and vision.

And, is it a fact that you can’t do something? Is it a fact that you are who they say you are? Is it a fact that you will never be XYZ? Of course not, but the inner script needs to be adjusted and reworked, reapplied. Without some self work, some inner attendance, our self-script goes unchallenged, our mind map corrals our very being and potential if not opened up to reflection and adjustment, and in particular, the awareness of others around us. Challenge your personal fact-sheet, let go the script, and live.

Paul,

pvcann.com

13 Comments

Filed under life, mindfulness, Science, self-development

Neighbours?

via Daily Prompt: Neighbors

I’m tempted to say Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan, for those of you who have encountered that TV show that began in 1985 and hasn’t stopped since.

I’m more interested in the ethics of who is my neighbour? In the gospel of Luke, there is a wonderful story of when a teacher of the law tries to test Jesus on his knowledge of the law. Jesus quotes to him the first two commands, love God and love your neighbour. The teacher of the law tries Jesus again and asks “And who is my neighbour?” And Jesus tells that famous story of the ‘Good Samaritan’ to illustrate loving your neighbour. The story focussed on the rivalry between the Jews and the Samaritans and the vast cultural gulf that alientated them, but on this occasion a Samaritan is the only one to stop and help a victim of robbery, a Jew,  who is wounded and laying in the road. The story ties with another ethical dilemma from Matthew 5, where Jesus asks his followers to love their enemies. In essence, the ethical principle here is love everyone, even your enemies (which raises a question as to the nature and perception of who or what an enemy is, so a dig back at reframing is the way here). The outcome would be that love goes around, and thus we too will be loved, even by our enemies, or, what goes around comes around.

For me there is a further connect with the Buddhist principle of non-harming.

And in Deep Ecology – my neighbour is my neighbour, my sisters and brothers across the world, but my neighbours are also my lemon tree, the red gum out front, the silver beet out back, the family cat, the parrots eating off my fruit tree, the rats in the ceiling, the ducks in the diversion drain, the river nearby, the moon, the planets ….

If we loved our neighbours as ourselves, imagine the difference it would bring to the whole of life.

S4300084 2.jpg

G’day neighbours.

Paul,

pvcann.com

 

 

6 Comments

Filed under life, nature, Philosophy/Theology, Spirituality