Tuesday, May 31, 2005

I've always wanted to build a camera obscura in my house. That's a system of mirrors, lenses and prisms that allow you to see around your house, like the various doors. You move this dial and there is a scene projected on a white plate that shows who's knocking.

Now if you think of these images being projected as light being shunted along, then when you pass a picture through a lens to make it smaller and brighter you also make it hotter. That is, if light passing through the lens works like when you focus the sun onto a piece of paper. Should, maybe, get hotter. Perspective is a way whereby a vision gets smaller, too. But it places more and more into your field of view and so each piece has to be smaller to fit. be funny if all things kept their size but had to overlap or something. But if you focus an image of a tree and make that image get smaller and smaller until it's a single white dot, doesn't it set the paper on fire? So you could say that at it's most focussed form, an image is energy. Which is what everything is, anyway. At least according to physics.

So if the image of everything is energy and the everything being imaged is energy, why do we think of everything as every 'thing'? Why don't we see it as a wildly varied pattern of energies interacting? Seems more useful somehow. You see that every thing is everything, like the printed flowers on a cloth are both flowers and part of the cloth, the image being the flower and the cloth being the substance by which the flower is made manifest. I wonder what bit of the universe is being focussed in order to form this image I see of myself?

Now, since infinite is another word for universe, and infinitely large is the same as infinitely small, we can see the analogy of an image being focussed forming this cone with the thing at one end, the image at the other and the energy between the two. But it's relative, isn't it? That thing at the end of the cone, that bit of light which burns, could be a massive object infinitely far away from the observer and that big thing at the other end could appear big simply because it is near that which perceives. Thus do optical illusions work on the mind. So in one half of reality I am an almost infinite thought thinking of that which is so small as to be a point of light and heat, or in the other universe that point is actually infinte in nature and referencing back to me via the energy between.

And that energy between forms the basis of a relationship, creating a single Thing from all the inbetweens. You name the relationship and create the universe. Trouble, I think, starts when the universe created relates back to you, making you part of it's infinity. Like being swept along in a rip tide.

I suppose that's what happens to god who get worshipped to death. But if they had a camera obscura in the infinte, they would see it coming and be able to duck and dodge. Maybe that's why we don't seem to have any more talking, burning bushes except for the occasional daliance with peyote or bad rye bread. Our Diety saw a bad time coming and ducked out. It might have been the Reformation, or maybe the Catholic church. Being All-Knowing still doesn't require All-Acting. The Diety could suddenly, instantly, see the Inquisition ahead and be so damn shocked It didn't say another Word for a whole millenium.

And if your camera obscura was turned on you, so you saw you looking at you, would you have some doubts as the nature of the image? Could it be some confusion would result as to who was watching whom? You question with your mind when you're human, but if you're All-Knowing there would be no pretending because you couldn't fool yourself. Such a pity. No wonder the pagan goddesses and gods tend to be less than All-Knowing. They have more fun. If you held a piece of paper about halfway between the Object and the Point, would the Image be Person, or Deity? And if the Object were All, then all the lenses and prisms would be philosophies and religions, and the Point, that Where-Not-Where that so many Zen folk crave for. It's gonna be really hot, though, in some form. You'd burn like a torch as you approached. And the Observer would See it all.

Each time the light passes through a lens or off a mirror or deflected by a prism, it loses energy, until finally it hits the white plate and you could close your eyes and leave your hand on that plate and never feel the image. The only way you'd know it was there would be to open your eyes and look.

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