observation without judgment

She walks fast, and yet anything distracts her. Now she seems to see, and now to notice nothing.
—Virginia Woolf, Jacob’s Room

The greater the capacity for judgment, the greater the wariness. Our wariness slowly permeates everything.
—Thomas Bernhard, Gargoyles

Speed operates independent of concentration. What moves past looks more interesting than what stands ahead. It is a simple matter to feign sight, as it is to appear unaware. Perhaps the only proof of either is in the details, in one’s ability to report them.

(Does she not notice, or only appear to not notice.)

Seeing everything makes it impossible to focus on the narrow. The truth of the world’s incongruities shatters that focus knob into splinters. White-out conditions descend. A heart cannot expand to fill this wide a field of vision. All-consuming observation is a form of slow death, even as it deepens awareness.

(Does she walk fast because she does not want to be noticed.)

Moments of clarity pierce the cotton wool with no warning. The inherent lack of preparation precludes gain, and the resultant thatching into solid theory. With no philosophy to peddle, no brilliant answers to impossible question(er)s, there is only ostracism.

(For the impartial observer must embrace anonymity.)

From the outer edges objective observation appears to alienate the observer from others. Yet it is important not to judge, to strike with this tinder an internal corruption. Consumption by inner judgment brings another form of death, slow but more painful than all-consuming objective observation.

(The myth of universal truth shelters beneath the canopy of only what we see.)

Objective observation necessitates separation from the self. Motion away from the self occurs with judgment. The two are dissimilar, separation and motion away. One observes but does not compare to the self. This is static separation. One judges, compares to self, and in so doing increases distance from the self. This is motion away. Observation without judgment preserves the self. Observation with judgment disparages it.

Previous Post
Leave a comment

5 Comments

  1. As with many of your pieces, I want to come back and read this again, when my mind feels less full of cotton wool, to see how it strikes me then. I’m warily deferring judgment, I guess.

    Reply
    • Fair enough. I’m still debating its merits myself.

      Reply
      • Oh, I wasn’t debating its merits, only my ability to say something cogent as to what they are, and about your line of argument. But let me stick my neck out now and say that I buy most if not all of the theses here (assuming they are for sale) and that the whole has a pleasing density.

        Reply
        • Well, thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to reflect on it. It kind of veered off from where I thought it was heading, but that’s part of the fun, right.

Thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  • Recent Posts

  • Navigation Station

    The links along the top of the page are rudimentary attempts at trail markers. Otherwise, see below for more search and browse options.

  • In Search of Lost Time

  • Personal Taxonomy

  • Common Ground

  • Resources

  • BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS

%d bloggers like this: