2011 A Year of Yes
book and genius
Insights & Distinctions Buy Now
El Foro Landmark
Life looks different when we’re generating it
We were brought up, enculturated, taught, related to, from the idea that our subjective experience (thoughts, emotions, moods, feelings, etc.) has a causative relationship with our actions. That whole idea is really pervasive, tough to counter, hard to get beyond because it’s so palpably clear to us subjectively. When we are excited (or bored, etc.), we don’t say “I’m being excited, we say “I am excited.” We take for granted that what we are feeling, thinking, etc. inside of us is what produces our actions—and that limits our world.
If we track down the false division between our actions and “what’s out there,” a whole other way of living becomes possible. “A dancer is locked into an environment, responsive to music, responsive to a partner. The idea that the dance is a state of us, inside of us, or something that happens in us is crazy. Our ability to dance depends on all sorts of things going on inside of us, but that we are dancing is fundamentally an attunement to the world around us.”*
It’s the way things “occur” for us that’s the source of our way of being, our way of acting (not the other way around). Our world—a malleable, occurring world—is a function of our conversations, one in which we have access, where there’s power, where life gets created and generated.
*Alva Noë, Life Is the Way the Animal Is in the World, 2013