Reality vs. Reflection
Although it was more cloudy today than yesterday, reflection is still the theme that greeted me, Adele, Annie and Halley on our daily visit to our backyard and nature trail by Lake Jeanette.
There is something profound in the two pictures below. One is the actual view. The other is the actual view turned 90 or 270 degrees (I am not telling you which one because it would tell you which side of the photo is real and which is reflection). The profundity arises for me in that the perspective of the picture truly affects how one differentiates "reality" from reflection.
So, can you tell which side is real and which side is reflection?
If you are a good Zen Buddhist (or probably more if you stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night and read a popular book on Zen Buddhism) you will say "neither", which is a fine answer.
And, if you are a theoretical physicist or a philosopher, you might remind me that even by the time this image reached my camera lens it was already way in the past, at least from the perspective of atomic particles. So, you might dismiss any profundity I found in my photos as the musings of a nitwit. (which being a nitwit is probably true, but there are much better ways to classify me that way than the musings on these photos)
And then the philosopher might follow up with a question of whether the past is real and whether this image of reflection has any meaning at all.
At this point, the 16-17 year old version of me would have eagerly engaged with the philosopher and stayed up all night talking with him/her/they about the meaning of these perspectives and exploring objective reality, quantum physics, relativity and how that all of these ideas of how humans can never actually be in the moment (by the time we sense or observe anything it is in the past), somehow explained my sense of isolation. And, that all of my peers who I felt outcast from were too stupid to see it because they were worrying about their own relationships, partying, proms, playing football, or whatever. Of course, this just made me feel more isolated and outcast. But, hey, I was deeper.
The 61 year old version of me just tries to absorb the beauty of nature and find some meaning, or connection, or joy to reflect on. Being a high functioning Aspy, I still feel pretty isolated in human society. But, If I am successful at paying attention to my surroundings. If I remember to feel and express gratitude for being part of this all encompassing energy we call nature. And, if I remember that I am a very recent product of evolution relative to the trees in this photo whose lineage goes back several hundred million years before mine, and who have so much to teach me, then I find myself becoming lighter and connected to something bigger.
I like to think my 61 year old self has gained some wisdom, albeit still flawed.
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