Author Topic: perceptual phenomonology  (Read 596 times)

oldbill4823
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perceptual phenomonology
« on: October 02, 2011, 09:49:54 AM »
 Just for kicks i used to hang out on a forum dedicated to monsters and people who hunted them. Psychic investigators, werewolves, demon hunters and the like. It had its fair share of fruitcakes and a few casualities of the psychic romance section. In all though it was an interesting place to learn about the recording of altered states.Hanging out with the crazies one friend used to call it. I used to refer to it as an open air lunatic asylum. One that never shut.

What was interesting was witnessing how people spoke about their experiences, how they described them to themselves and others. Demon hunters would talk about liberating victims from possession, werewolves would describe their hunger and awesome shifts, vampires would talk about psychic feeding. What all of them did was in fact describe expereinces according to their over-arching beliefs. They would describe an experience via explanations from their paradigms. That was actually a very important destinction that i learned to differentiate between. I now understand there is a vast difference between a description and an explanation.

Occaisionally on this forum a real fruitcake would turn up and start mixing systems in a wild frenetic smorgasborg of explanatory word salad. It was funny at times but sad when you realised their was a real person on the other side of it all trying to come to terms with some genuinely wierd s**t. What hardly ever happened was someone who would reduce themselves to a position of not knowing anything and simply describe what they saw heard felt, sans explanations. For some strange reason what i witnessed over and over again was that people have a need to appear to be in control. In the face of wierd experiences this urge to have an explanatory discourse was overbearing. I know because i have been there myself at times.

In the past i have referred to the act of talking about wierd experiences as 'perceptual phenomenology'. Its  a long word which sounds very clever and i have no idea if it is correct or not, i am merely hijacking the meaning because it feels right for the purposes i have for it. Basically in its purest form it is merely describing our perceptions during an experience. It is a witness statement. We stay away from conclusions, we stay instead with the unadulterated evidence of our senses and awareness. For me just describing experiences is the purest form of communication possible. It allows us a very clear view of what has happened. In fact it may even be the most rational scientific approach to wierd events that we have.

What is more these records are like open holograms that we as aware witnesses can enter into. They are energetic records of an event. We as readers of such writing can even help the writer to probe the experience further. Our questions about specific sensations thoughts etc are invitations for the writer to look deeper to recapture even more of the experience, to recapitulate (in a way)





oldbill4823
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Re: perceptual phenomonology
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2011, 11:06:34 AM »
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So what i am proposing is that we write using description alone. Its not just description of psychic events, it can be a description of any experience. Done properly yes i believe it can greatly assist any endeavours that we are attempting. Its an exercise thats all. Take the following paragraph for example

I had a lucid dream where my double spoke with my girlfriends energy body. Then she found a dreaming gate passed through then came back with another dreamer. On her return and whilst still operating through awareness of the second attention I pointed out to her that she had just passed through the second gate and that i had been aware enough to witness this. Then we both woke up in the first attention, the tonal, and i repeated what i had just told her 'other'.

This is a record which relies on explanations in order to convey the story. It is the equivalent of writing about an experience in shorthand. The only problem is that this form of shorthand is quite rare. Not many people know it. If you are familiar with Castaneda then it makes sense. If you dont know his work then its nearly incomprehensible. Thats for those of us that can even agree on a form of 'Castaneda speak' without having to question each others conceptual understanding when compared to our own.


The following is an attempt to describe the same experience using 'perceptual phenomenology'.

I am lying in bed talking to my girlfriend. It is relaxed and peaceful. Then i feel something like a gust of wind. A few moment later i notice that she has come back. That strikes me as odd then i suddenly remember that in order to come back she must have left. The memory of her leaving is so subtle and yet, it is definately there, and quite jubilant at the realisation, i realise i caught the motion of it. All of a sudden i understand it was marked by the wind, as if she just swished away only to return a few moment later. Another female is on the bed with us. They are talking together, indifferent to what i am going through. A little delighted that i managed to be aware of her swishing to and from the bed i point out what just happened to her. She looks at me as if to say she doesnt believe me. I insist to her that i caught her motions of leaving and coming back, that it is no joke. For some reason it seems a big deal that i noticed it, at least to me.
I open my eyes as i roll over in bed, and am struck by a moment of consternation. My girlfriend is there with me in bed exactly as i had just seen her, except i now realise that i had just been dreaming. She opens her eyes and i start telling her that we had just been talking, and that i felt her swish out of, and back into my awareness and the dream we had just been having. She looks at me as if she is trying to understand my words, trying to bring her mind to waking state. It normally takes her ages to wake up to any useful degree anyway. I wonder if she is taking her long drawn out time yet again.



Obviously this way of writing takes longer. It requires more work on the writers behalf. Why do it?

Well there are a few good reasons, the first that comes to mind is that it forces the mind to really focus on the detail of the even rather than making a pastiche or stylised version of the experience. Such stylised recountings are merely ideas of a memory. They are removed from the actual experience. When i read such posts that are removed from the actual experience it is very difficult to enter into the mood and feelings of what happened. In fact i treat such stylised notes as adverts, adverts to ask the writer for a real description of the real thing should i want to know more. I treat them thus because on their own such notes are dead and lifeless. They lack any content that can move my own awareness to consider things from new angles, they lack the ability to take me out of myself to have new experiences.
However, if we describe using 'perceptual phenomenology' then we are literally capturing the moment of the experience in words. The words can communicate the experience directly, we as readers can enter and share the experience with the author. Even if we have different ideas, even if we have different understandings, an accurate description of a powerful or unusual experience can really move us and show us something new. Just think back to the first time you read Castanedas work for example.

The second good reason for writing in this way is that it forces the mind to deconstruct the experience and examine it very accurately, very objectively. We remove and resist the tendency to shoehorn our experiences into preconcieved ideas. We do not chase concepts but instead start to open ourselves to experience free from conceptual thinking. I am guessing here but maybe it can actually lead to states of freedom from our constant mental dialogue. It trains us to be aware and remap our awareness readying it for further explorations into the unknown. That for me is the best bit. When i do have experiences of the unknown i really want them to be just that, unknown. I dont get turned on by just following the same old same old, or kidding myself i am always in control and have an answer for anything that happens.. Instead i am trying to be aware, free from the world i know, and exploring over the edges of what is familiar. Then through this technique of sorceric writing i can really share it with you afterwords.