When the pleasure is in the comparison

ONE

I just watched Seven Samurai (Japan, black & white, 1954), then The Magnificent Seven (1960).

It’s a big pleasure watching both, but each time it’s very different. Kurosawa’s movie looks very odd, because of the culture, the language and the well known Japanese actors’ intensity. The US one is much more easy and comfortable, with stars (Steve McQueen, Yul Brynner…).

But there’s a “side-pleasure” : you compare. The stories the paces, the ends, the bad guys, the fights…

TWO

Traveling! Tourists have many ways of being tourists : in a group, alone, moving around and visiting, or staying in one city (choose Paris, OK?) and walk “going whichever way the wind blows” (we say “le nez au vent” – nose in the wind).

It’s beautiful or not, deceiving or marvelous, you take pictures or you chat with your spouse. But you have to admit :

The pleasure, again, is in the comparisons game.

THREE

There’s a game I love : learning another language. It’s absolutely full of delights. Culturally. Translating. Discovering idioms. Trying to find out where translated words don’t really fit, match the other language. Finding similar words… or traitors (a library (bibliothèque) is NOT a librairie (bookstore) in France…).

It is, constantly, a game of comparisons.

FOUR

I strongly think that a big part of our inner life is linked to the world with the concept of Analogy. We endlessly get informations with our senses (about places, culture, and people, everything we meet) and then we braincompute them with what-we-already-know with analogy.

Then, we compare. Then, we decide.

This decision can be : run away, explore, smile, talk, anything.

OUTRO

Where else does it happen to you? Where could you trigger a “game of comparisons”? How is it an enrichment? Where is the effort? What about memories? Analogy with them?

Thanks for reading!

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Right Left Brain

Today, “neuroscientists assert that there is no evidence within brain imaging that indicates some people are right-brained or left-brained”.

Well, who cares, right?

What is true is what we see : some people tends to be logical and others tends to be more… colored.

Then, it’s funny to watch how we all struggle to gain on the “other” tendency side…

To be complete, we have to make progress where we’re weaker.

More : we are not still, we are constantly moving. Like Proust’s characters, we don’t even know ourselves really, thus we don’t know others, and we’re pulsing and connecting with possibilities.

“Haecceity” : it’s about Labels on your Forehead

Have a nice day

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On a brilliant day in May, in the year 1868, a gentleman was reclining at his ease on the great circular divan which at that period occupied the centre of the Salon Carre, in the Museum of the Louvre. This commodious ottoman has since been removed, to the extreme regret of all weak-kneed lovers of the fine arts, but the gentleman in question had taken serene possession of its softest spot, and, with his head thrown back and his legs outstretched, was staring at Murillo’s beautiful moon-borne Madonna in profound enjoyment of his posture. He had removed his hat, and flung down beside him a little red guide-book and an opera-glass. The day was warm; he was heated with walking, and he repeatedly passed his handkerchief over his forehead, with a somewhat wearied gesture. And yet he was evidently not a man to whom fatigue was familiar; long, lean, and muscular, he suggested the sort of vigor that is commonly known as “toughness.” But his exertions on this particular day had been of an unwonted sort, and he had performed great physical feats which left him less jaded than his tranquil stroll through the Louvre. He had looked out all the pictures to which an asterisk was affixed in those formidable pages of fine print in his Badeker; his attention had been strained and his eyes dazzled, and he had sat down with an aesthetic headache. He had looked, moreover, not only at all the pictures, but at all the copies that were going forward around them, in the hands of those innumerable young women in irreproachable toilets who devote themselves, in France, to the propagation of masterpieces, and if the truth must be told, he had often admired the copy much more than the original. His physiognomy would have sufficiently indicated that he was a shrewd and capable fellow, and in truth he had often sat up all night over a bristling bundle of accounts, and heard the cock crow without a yawn. But Raphael and Titian and Rubens were a new kind of arithmetic, and they inspired our friend, for the first time in his life, with a vague self-mistrust.

H. James. The American.

Endless Amendments : Reality

There’s a tree, in front of you, while you walk.

Perception. Your eyes send images to your brain. “It’s a tree”.

In a second, you brain has the image, thus the word and the concept linked to it.

You brain has a powerful tool : Analogy.

If it “looks” like a tree, thus you decide it’s probably one. Then you watch and fix, adapt.

Analogy is pretty good for representations, drawings…

If you hear something behind you, your brain computes immediately a 3D-Map of what is probably there. Then your turn around and your eyes fix, amend the “reality”.

Successive drafts, like instant sketches…

Endless Amendments…

 

Yes, it’s splitting hairs the French way, to imagine dials. Donc :

  1. What if a word was a tack? And a strong one…
  2. What happens when our senses send us something else than the tacked word?
  3. How do we know that all these are the Letter A?
  4. Who are those who think with preconceiveness?
  5. Why am I wary of words (as labels)?
  6. What are hallucinations?
  7. Why should we train ourselves to endless improve, enrich, amend what we think we know?
  8. What is movement, here? Haeccity?
  9. What is to plug with possibilities and propositions?
  10. What does “She’s mean” mean?
  11. Really?

 

Have a great day!

 

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When your imagined map doesn’t fit with reality…

If you meet someone online, or even if you talk on Skype with a friend you know “in real life” but you never went to his/her home, your brain… works.

Your brain draws a map of this person’s apartment, or house.

According to the informations you have, you can NOT prevent your mind to invent “the other person’s place”. You’ve been there, haven’t you? Well, errr : nope.

You can hold two pictures of a room, or a complete Skype “Hey, do you want to see my place?” wandering : your brain does it : it builds a set of images and a map, it builds the light, the mood, the size of all of it.

Then…

One day you GO there. And this is disturbing. This porch, these lanterns, this mirror, this corridor, this carpet, this bathroom : you were all wrong, right? It’s different.

It clicks. You brain literally swallows the environment. It is trained to do it!

Now, you’re back home. And you have TWO memories of this place. Ah ah! So there!

The place you imagined. And the place you saw for real.

These are two different things!

OK, this makes us think, right? It’s a set of questions…

Our mind is constantly imagining what “will happen”, how this “will be”. Then, in front of reality, it… “fixes” it. It works in real time : if you hear a glass crashing on the floor behind you, your brain draws a whole decor, a scenery of “what I will see when I turn my head”.

What is disillusion?

Can you do that for a whole culture? A whole country?

What can we do, or study, with this knowledge? What if you were writing a movie? What tension could you use? More : what will your brain do with the first, imagined place, once you know pretty well the real one? Is it vanishing? Is it useless to keep it? Why? What if you studied the differences between what you expected and reality? What does it show about your brain?

What if you’re a couple and you both imagined the place you will be for a holiday, from a set of five pictures on the web? Would you talk about it, once you’re on site? I mean… about the differences of… the differences of what you imagined?

OK, I’ll have one more glass of wine before going to bed 🙂

Thanks for reading!

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“This” Tropism : what you read understands you

The King of Kings of the world, for this, is Marcel Proust.

Buy, one day, a good translation of “A la Recherche du Temps Perdu” (In Search of Lost Time). If you want to explore Proust, buy first How Proust Can Change Your Life by Alain De Botton, it’s a really great book, and a great key to this author. Buy it for your birthday! Say it’s from Jean-Pascal, OK?

I try, here, next to my little tools, to talk about “very little movements of the minds”, what we call here “Tropismes”.

There is ONE tropism you know pretty well, you blog reader, it’s this one :

When you read an article and you jump off you chair saying : “It’s true! I feel that too! Never seen it written though!”.

It’s lovely to suddenly see someone who struggles with the same tiny mind movements as you, right?

Someone wrote one day that

We read to know we’re not alone

Isn’t it true?

 

Jean-Pascal

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When your brain has pop-up windows…

– Focus, dear, where are you?
– I have pop-up windows, sorry…

To go blank. To zone out. I searched for English vocabulary, you see?

When do we have pop-up windows? Why? Someone? Somewhere? Is something in our brain capable of “taking the lead”, cutting us from reality to throw the whole package into dreamy states? Yeah, probably. Inattentive because faraway. Is it dangerous? What if it was a sign? Of what?

Let’s trigger a game :

Each time you have pop-up windows, you stop, you stand up, you stop everything, you take your car and you GO physically, exactly, where you were pop-up windowing. I mean really. NOW. What if? What will happen?

Will you, then, have other pop-up windows? Or will you be stopping your zoning-out to be just… there and happy?

Thanks for reading!

 

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#Deleuze about classification

“All classifications belong to this style; they are mobile, modifiable, retroactive, boundless, and their criteria vary from instance to instance. Some instances are full, others empty. A classification always involves bringing together things with different appearances and separating those that are very similar. That is the beginning of the formation of concepts.”

“Toutes les classifications sont de ce genre : elles sont mobiles, varient leurs critères suivant les cases, sont rétroactives et remaniables, illimitées. Certaines cases sont très peuplées, d’autres vides. Il s’agit toujours dans une classification de rapprocher des choses très différentes en apparence, et d’en séparer de très voisines. C’est la formation des concepts.”

Gilles Deleuze, Le Cerveau, c’est l’Ecran, in “Deux Régimes de Fous”.

 

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