Hick

Day 11.

The feeling that one had more time in youth is an illusion. There isn’t less time. That can’t be. What’s actually happening is that the brain has more stuff. Cramming even more things to it takes longer.

Measuring time in absolute units in the context of learning is not helpful. A measure for how fast the brain could process input per unit time would be more appropriate. Yet the many kinds of inputs and variations of brain states make for even more combinations of the two. Creating a yardstick for that is hard.

Sleeping is easy in comparison. There’s nothing like good sleep to give the brain time to make space for new data. It is of interest that the exact same cause as the brain having thoughts make getting to sleep difficult.

Once one makes the intention to sleep known, it’s as if thoughts become aware of being in line to the chopping block. Each one makes their best case right then hoping to survive the upcoming purge. Hear them one by one, but do not engage. It is their way to say goodbye.

Imagine holding a sieve against the current of a river. In fact we do not have to be so fancy. Imagine fingertips touching the sand spread against the coming and going of waves. Or against running water from an open faucet.

In this metaphor, there’s supposed to be some brain, some time, some sleep, and some learning; but they all got away. Sleep and don’t waste water. Enough for today.

Nathan Petrelli

Day 10.

It was a dream about flying. Lift right foot with both hands, and with one’s left foot leap. The sensation was akin to floating on water at calm sea. Except one is face down high above ground roaming around free.

And not without effort too. The intention to lift one’s foot was all too real. One could feel the fatigue and the need to come down. Until one regroups enough to give it one more try.

The feeling is not unfamiliar as this I would always try to do. The sun is bright and the sky is blue. How nice it would be to plant one’s face on the sea for a change? But then one would get reminded that one can’t breathe under water. And we know how snorkels suck.

Existence is fascinating. This notion of a place, the knowledge that one is somewhere. What is this I that got disappointed it wasn’t real when it woke up? It’s as if this body had a memory of being a fish in the water, of being unborn in the womb.

Brains have sections that map to the physical world. One could acknowledge that physical processes as information compression could lead to this. That sometimes one could be “awake” while it happens. That one plays around with Google Earth on occasion. Yet even so it’s surreal.

And thus continues the eternal swinging of the pendulum. From the freedom to think of the self as not needing a body as did Avicenna, to one who says enough is enough as Al-Ghazali. So on and so forth.

The fish I ate for dinner was delicious. Enough for today.