Write about the last paragraph of KTS Ex. 25

Memories Tend to Get Blurred with the Passing of Time by  Ale Di Gangi - Flickr

It’s interesting how looking backwards on memory can clarify how time unfolds in the present. I found it wonderfully fascinating how a little 5 minute exercise of looking at a memory (and hours of reading and inquiry) opened the door to how I take continuous open impressions, and through a focusing process, narrow a continuum of events, enfolding them to ever smaller pieces, while converting this data to meaningful information, which then becomes a linear knowing of specific – things – a lexicon of benchmarks in time and mental space. It reminds me a little of computer algorithms that take large amounts of data and filters it down to a pre-intended category rendering it more ‘manageable’… a ‘nozzeling down’ effect.

I also realize how I often then promptly forget it’s a ‘process’ and identify the entire movement as a thing that I can quantify, point to as if it were static and fixed, then claim it (this moment or memory) as mine, proclaim it even as ‘me’.

Our Teachers Training assignment is to write about the last paragraph of KTS 25, which makes a few intriguing points:

– the self and its experiences are an interpretation of time’s momentum.

– Form and identity become the content projected by experience as it draws on time’s dynamic, thereby projecting the self into the realm of existence.

– Existence responds to the transitory nature of linear time by proceeding from one transition to another.

I gradually took notice while observing my own mental space that a memory is NOT a static thing, it is a re-calling of pre-limited parts of a continuum of impressions and patterns that I gather as they peak interest, under a near continuous process of scrutiny and valuation. A memory of ‘going to dinner with friends’, or ‘sitting on the beach on a sunny day’, might arise as a specific memory flash of an image in mental space, but attempting to stay with that single image seems illusive. Other impressions bubble up, other flashes arise seemingly from the dark, and take form from space itself. Parts of an image may be ill-defined composed of fog-like elements, or there can be gaps in continuity, while others are vivid with color, and attached to feelings identified as originally felt. Focusing on the unclear in a memory seemed to bring forth more related aspects of that remembrance – space just opened presenting more diaphanous impressions from the original impression of an unformulated whole.

By observing how a memory presented itself I got a sense of the ‘processor in residence’, a self in charge that assembled the parts, a controller who made all the choices, but looking now in a relaxed way, separation of me as a by-stander observing the memory seems to dissolve. Open observing was much less controlling, even when looking into the unclear areas of the memory, there was mostly just looking. There was little feeling of me observing the memory play out from over here across the room – little apparent distance from a separated position as by-stander.

Shifting from observing a memory, focus widens to the present and what is arising from moment to moment – a stream of impressions, emotional currents, sense data, images, thoughts, some of which were remembered, and more or less openness that felt like an abundance of space – degrees of roominess. At times I felt the controller intending thoughts, and attending to or recognizing a sound or sight naming and narrating a thought string, then referring it to a sense of self sitting and feeling ‘here’. This was how I confirmed my own existence, taking a ‘me’ subjective view of an objective world arising ‘there’. At other times the controller relaxed taking a back seat and just allowed time to blossom. So I definitely got a sense of self at the center organizing experience, but I also got glimpses of full-openness, witness-like, that is followed in time by a continuous tendency that consolidates and organizes impressions. And I realized this is a much more fundamental view of, if not who but, what I am.

Previous explorations of memory can be seen at this link with expounding comments:

About David Filippone

David Filippone has been a student of Tarthang Tulku’s Time, Space, Knowledge (TSK) vision for over twenty-five years. For the past twelve years, he has studied TSK and Full Presence Mindfulness with Jack Petranker, director of the Center for Creative Inquiry (CCI). He also participated in programs offered by Carolyn Pasternak of the Odiyan Center. For the past several years, David has curated the CCI Facebook page, which is often TSK-focused, and he serves on the CCI Board of Directors. The CCI Facebook page can be found at the following link... https://www.facebook.com/CenterforCreativeInquiry/
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2 Responses to Write about the last paragraph of KTS Ex. 25

  1. David Filippone says:

    Hi Michael,
    Thanks for the kind words. Regarding the graphics on this series of posts focusing on memories, I like to find evocative visuals that might stand as a metaphor for what I might be expressing in words. It’s just fun for me. :-)

    The snapshot on the next post was of a beach in Cape May, NJ that I felt was somewhat illustrative of what I was trying to say about thinking of a memory as fixed in detail, as if it was still-born, a moment forever frozen in time, but as I’ve said that is not what a memory is. Besides the snapshot only being a limited focus on a much wider background, it depicts only a limited frame of surface reflections of color and form.

    The more free-formed painting shown above is also frozen and limited in scope, but the initial approach seemed much more open and freer in its interpretation of its vision of wind, surf, and beach-goers. It seemed more evocative of the feeling of what I was trying to say about the past not being fixed and still open to interpretation, and a fresh view or vision (a new look), even though the memory is gone in the linear sense.

    No I didn’t paint it, though I wish I had, nor did I take that particular snapshot of Cape May. I found them both on Flickr.

  2. michaelg says:

    A wonderful post, David. Far too rich for me to comment on in detail. In fact too rich for me to recognize in it the kind of awareness operating in my own experience. That’s not a problem. I expect your greater sensitivity provides challenges as well as rewards. ; < }

    I found myself feeling that I am quite dependent on the filing cabinet of my mind, just as I am dependent on the four-drawer cabinet in the corner of the room–into which I keep stuffing receipts, bank statements, pieces of writing, etc. And there are the many other filing boxes in my garage with "older" iterations of the same kinds of documents. Good luck on finding things that don't fit into my filing scheme.

    Your creative excursion into the realms of the past caused me to realize just how much I try to simplify my experiences in order to derive something that I can file away. What a magic sleight of hand you pull off when you pull open a folder and new colors fly out. Perhaps "Pandora's Box" (sent by Zeus to cause problems on Earth) may actually be full of the riches of dynamic time–allowed to fly forth?

    I love your painting. It's like an altered version of the beach photo you posted earlier. Did you just do it? It's replcement of the earlier specificity and defined edges with a melding dance of color seems more alive, as if the past is being inhabited by a lively, exploring mind.

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