"Apophenia"

"Apophenia"

How do we distinguish one object from another? Whether it be a mental object or a physical one what makes separate objects in our consciousness. Contrast. We know everything in our world by contrasting inputs with other inputs. We use the sword of discernment to cut out the objects we perceive by contrasting their qualities. The word Discernment comes "from Middle English discernen, from Old French discerner, from Latin discernere (“to separate, divide, distinguish, discern”), from dis- (“apart”) + cernere (“to separate”)" - Wiktionary. So we can see that our understanding of our world comes from our ability to perceive contrast. What happens when there is nothing to contrast with? This is the space of dreams and the unconscious. A liminal space of mind where all objects blend together creating novel imaginings. This is the space where there is neither a face nor a figure but something in-between.
If you allow your eyes to relax while looking at a fixed point in this painting you can shift between perceptions of objects within the painting. None of the objects you perceive in this painting are there by design. This is a painting of my unconscious as I allowed my brush to paint shapes without intention. The result is a painting of Neither-Neither. It is neither a landscape nor a face. But through the contrast of shade and shape we perceive hidden objects. This is a fascinating aspect of the pattern seeking bot that resides in the human psyche.
The term Apophenia means ": the tendency to perceive a connection or meaningful pattern between unrelated or random things (such as objects or ideas)" - Merriam Webster Dictionary
Although it can lead one down blind allies Apophenia is the mental tool that humans used throughout time to learn, discern, and correlate useful patterns in nature. But all these things come down to one important ability. The ability to perceive CONTRAST. Without it there is no definitive self or other. To know ones self is to know the contrasts of the supposed self with the environment. Unfortunately many have seen contrasts as something to be obliterated rather than celebrated. The human social urge to homogeneity is a misled passion. The urge to make another as yourself comes not from the desire to help others grow but from an insecurity in ones sense of supposed self. When you cannot abide difference it is a response of a psyche that is unstable in it's sense of self. It comes from a self too attached to the environment that surrounds it, so when the environment changes they feel as though there is an unwanted change to the supposed self. This creates a fear and a frustration from being unable to control the environment. And in that fearful frustration the supposed individual lashes out in a desperate attempt to destroy the new contrast that has entered the environment. This is why we have people who will spend more effort to destroy another rather than build up themselves. To understand the world we must realize that all our contrasts are only the way we perceive the world not the world as is. There is no Atman there is only Brahman. 

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