I ate wild boar yesterday, or so I was told. It tasted very good, but indistinguishable from regular old pig.
Right now the Beatles’ “Pigs” is playing. I think that’s the name of the song. There was a time when I loved how irreverant I thought it was. Now it just seems odd- beautifully performed and produced, but oddly angry and sarcastic. Why were they angry at all of those “piggies?” Because they had normal lives?
The interpretations we place on things change over time. A song heard fifteen years ago will sound very different than it does now. Obviously, who you are in the future will be different (and the environment around the listening experience, the sounds of traffic, the room, the equipment it is played on, the weather even, will be different).
Do all of those little elements make a difference in experiencing something? I think so. In a way, it’s academic. It feels somewhat different to me, although I can’t exactly compare the two: I can’t experience the two things side by side and then consider how they felt.
But I think those changes make a difference. In a way, the amazing thing is that we do think that things are the same. We think it’s the same song over and over, and it’s not.
In a way what you do when you try to understand impermanence is to use concept to grab ahold of the flow of things, to go from being drowned in experience and having no idea, to being swept along in experience and starting to have some idea.
Looking at your own body is a good way, I think. Maybe I do this too much. I’m not talking about obsessing, exactly, thought, I’m talking about observing changes in the body. It does change all the time. I am getting older. I get fatter and thinner.
Is there a way to go beyond the level of banality with these observations? Everyone, I think, notices slightly that they are getting older, and that things change (and it’s not a satisfying answer to just say “Notice it more”- why? is there a line that gets crossed at some point, and you get “more aware” as a result of all this noticing?).
I’m getting stuck at that point, and that’s probably a good sign. The way the changes of time, the seasons, weather, seem cliched- how is this obstacle handled? Is the dismissal of basic change as a cliche covering up other things (fear, panic, laziness)? Is it intelligent, in that it picks up on the presentation of impermanence in a way that’s a little mechanical (not fresh, inspiring, or surprising)?
Not sure. I will have to pick up that point some other time.
some examples of change:
– listening to Bob Dylan, and thinking that I don’t love his music as much as I used to (because some of his songs have a lot of anger at women, to my ear, and that spoke to me when I was single and frustrated, but not so much now that I’m married, now it’s more disturbing). Of course, I am still a big fan (a live version of one of his songs is playing now).
-the water bottle atop the fridge is full of water, again- but it’s different water! how bizarre that things are always so different, and that I have this feeling that they’re always the same!
-it’s the full moon.