The other day, lying in bed, I felt my heart beating for the first time in a long while. I realized how little I live in my body, how much in my mind.
∆ Rodger Kamenetz, from Terra Infirma (University of Arkansas Press, 1985)
Resonance is being in flow state but with another person.
To find resonance, you need to create. Any creation is an act of tapping a tuning fork and seeing who resonates. Creation is the risk. Resonance is the reward.
Her nervous system had been through so much. She decided to spend the rest of her life calming the inflammation. Thoughts, feelings, memories, behavior, relations. She soothed it all with deep, Loving breaths and gentle practices. The softer she became with herself, the softer she became with the world, which became softer with her. She birthed a new generational cycle: Peace.
⚘ Jaiya John, Fragrance After Rain
Strauss did not believe in transparency. He believed that even in the most open-minded societies, many truths were too problematic to be shouted. His contemporary disciples, like Thiel, conceal their words. They hide controversial ideas in esoteric language, and Strauss described the benefits as such: “It has all the advantages of private communication without having its greatest disadvantage—that it reaches only the writer’s acquaintances. It has all the advantages of public communication without having its greatest disadvantage—capital punishment for the author… Their literature is addressed, not to all readers, but to trustworthy and intelligent readers only.”
Our capacity for imitation leads to envy. Babies’ interest in a particular toy has less to do with the toy itself and more to do with the fact that the other babies desire the toy. As soon as one child desires the toy, so do the others. Eventually, even though there are many toys available to play with, all the children want the same toy.
Art is, in this view, at its core, an outlet for courtship. Incredible performances like those of Liszt and Rachmaninoff are not just for the pleasure of music. The incredible difficulty of performing the musical compositions is itself the show. The difficulty is not a side-effect of discovering new soundscape frontiers that produce blissful and extraordinary experiences to degrees that couldn’t be possible without the difficulty of execution. Rather, the difficulty of performing the musical pieces is part and parcel of what makes them so extraordinary. They are indeed erotic displays of fitness traits (cf. Lisztomania) crafted to cause an impression in fertile ground.
Even though valence and arousal do seem to explain a big chunk of the differences between emotions, we can nonetheless find many cases where the “texture” of two emotions feel very different even though their valence and their arousal are similar. Hence we ask ourselves: How do we explain and characterize the textural differences between such emotions?
So what makes an experience feel good? The “feel good” quality of an experience is usually called valence in psychology and neuroscience (also described as the “pleasure-pain axis”). This quality is to be distinguished from arousal, which refers to the amount of energy expressed in an experience. Four examples: Excitement is a high-valence, high-arousal state. Serenity is a high-valence, low-arousal state. Anxiety is low-valence, high-arousal. And depression low-valence, low-arousal.