Re: The Pause that Refreshes (was Re: ART: What Art Is)

From: Anders Sandberg (
Date: Mon Jun 05 2000 - 08:14:02 MDT writes:

> I've come to accept that some things can't be hurried, but by slowing the
> tempo of my perceptions and expectations and carefully paying attention to
> the small signs of slow change in the developing plants I husband, I've been
> able to tap into a reservoir of insight and calm I never knew before.

I think astronomy can do this too, I take great enjoyment in tracing
the progress of the moon through its phases, where the planets and my
favorite constellations are from day to day. And of course the sun -
right now the night is just four or five hours long, and since I often
work at night I get the chance to see the light slowly change from
sunset to blue twilight to summer night to dawn. Beautiful.

Of course, there is a kind of opposite aesthetic enjoyment, the quick
flashes of enjoyment and understanding. This morning I was truly hyper
after having spent the entire weekend working on yet another magnum
opus (a transhumanist gastronomy text) and found that I had the
attention span of a butterfly but found aesthetic pleasure in almost
*everything* - the colors of the clear blue sky, the way trees move in
the wind, the spring flowers, the ingenious gratings of air vents, the
dynamics of traffic, the angles of buildings, the smells of people,
the intricate mathematics of plant growth, the patterns of dirt on an
ATM and everything else. Impossible to concentrate at anything, but
everything was delightful. I felt like the protagonist in Egan's
_Reasons to be Cheerful_. A very nice state but I think I wouldn't
want to remain in it indefinitely. There is much to be said for

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y

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