To me it’s a scary thought, but that only shows how caught up I am in head games, how out of touch with sensuous reality. Whatever we are and do is based on the reality – including our sense of self – that emerges out of the interaction of the perceptual abilities of a particular clump of matter, whatever matter is (and whatever it is, itself a result of all interactions preceding it) and its environment. Those perceptual abilities cover only a fraction of the possibilities to ‘read’ that environment, as illustrated by the abilities of other life forms (but that’s a topic for another post), but however limited, they still result in an overwhelming richness of stimuli affecting us. And we are only aware of a minute fraction of them. I’ve written about that earlier and won’t repeat that here (but do check out the long quote from Edward T. Hall), but I recently came across another nice illustration of the way we respond by and large to everything but what we think we actually respond to.
Nicely delivered I must say. And going just that little bit beyond the usual treatment of the importance of nonverbal cues, to give it added value. We are real suckers for delivery, which can be used to great effect by those who are skilled at controlling their channels of delivery. And delivery matters more than content. It scares me because I have this naive fantasy that ultimately truth will prevail. But what is going to prevail is what happens to trigger our innate switches most effectively. So within that sliver of access we have to what we are embedded within, we dance to tunes hard-wired long ago, not to the ones we delude ourselves we are hearing. Why are we so out of touch? The irony of it all is that we know, and play with them all the time, some better and more entertaining than others, but that doesn’t make us any less suckers to the occasions when we should withstand their invitation.
I could have labeled it tragedy rather than irony, but that would discount the possibilities our play offers. And it would suggest an inevitable outcome. But no one can look into the future, not even me (seriously). So while my hard-wired setting is definitely not allowing for the singularity crowd kinda optimism, its realism is also allowing enough self-doubt into my public displays to be careful with what I proclaim. However that may be, this guy, a British writer and comedian that my friend Richard Bull sent my way, has more control over delivery than most of us and uses it to great positive effect. Enjoy.