For the most part of my day, my body and mind are immersed in the constant flux and becoming of reality, as I operate harmoniously with the world’s shifting continuum. This is when I find myself in the familiar, the recognizable, and the codified…as the patterns and arrangements of reality harmonize effortlessly with the categorical structure of my cognition and its expectations and orientations.

But at times, this impeccable harmonization with reality can be uninspiring, for I can easily find myself dissolving into the mode of non-being. I love experiencing a sense of “disorientation” in my perception of reality, when I, the content observer, suddenly feel discontented, as I encounter a “break” or “separation” in the fabric of causes and effects. This is when the loss of a situation originates, and when the expectation of experiencing a well-known familiar reality is disappointed. But this unexpected disruption of continuity is what constitutes problems to be overcome. And it is the overcoming of such “emergent” events that establishes and confronts one’s existence in the world, for without inhibition of activity and the distances created by the inhibition, there can be no experience of time and space.

For example, I love stepping onto an escalator which is not working: my body and mind perceive that movement, because it has done so hundreds and thousands of times before. But in the instant that I step onto the elevator my body becomes motionless, as a cognitive dissonance is suddenly created in my mind, as there is a disagreement between what is really happening and my expectation of what should have happened. Some other examples are sitting in a stationary car and thinking that it is moving when in reality it is the other cars that are moving and I am still in the same place. Reaching out for the toilet paper after taking a dump, only to realize that there’s nothing there. Seeing a 95 percent free-throw shooter throws up an airball. Going down on a girl after making out with her for a hour only to find out that she is as dry as sandpapers. Or when I experience a sudden loss of words or a moment of awkward silence in the middle of a well-flowing conversation. Seeing a mistype in a book. Looking into a mirror without reflection, and etc.

These small cognitive dissonances are what I live for on a daily basis because of the utmost existential significance they entail, as they wake me up from the huge slumber of life. They make me stay sharp and focused on the nuances of reality because of the way they redefine, broaden, and deepen my sense of self and my active involvement in the temporal unfolding of life. But you can never look for these moments deliberately and consciously. They must come at you like a sudden attack from a predator in a place where you never expect it to be at. The moment you expect these dissonances to occur, they become incorporated within the continuum of reality…which can be experienced as an existential entrapment…a loss of autonomy.

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