I went for a walk through Venice beach in L.A. today, if that’s what it’s called. I watched skateboarders for a bit, people lying on the beach sunbathing. The sun is much kinder here than in New Zealand.
Being in that environment I became aware of how many people were behaving in the context that other people would react to them, but then isn’t this true of humanity in general? Riding bikes newly manufactured but from designs of a century ago. Well groomed, well gymed, well toned.
And then there were a couple of large concrete cones just for graffiti, marked by a sign saying that it was for licensed city artists only. Ordinary taggers were not allowed. I wondered if the sign would stop them. It seems that graffiti has now become official art.
But there was unofficial graffiti in the skateboard area, tags at least, another phenomenon of marking territory, asserting identity. Feeling as if you matter and that others that mattered would notice.
The other day I came across an interesting thought around Pratyahara in ReligiousBook.Net. It asserted that
Pratyahara is the stage at which an adept learns how to control the “tentacles” of consciousness… Krishna was saying that one of the things that a man should learn is the ability to draw all his indriyas[tentacles] from the material world inwards, just like a tortoise retracts its paws and head into its shell. Then one should extend one’s indriyas into Divine eons in order to embrace God with them, to draw himself to Him and to merge with Him.
Being in a new environment has made me more aware of how we each extend the tentacles of our consciousness into the social world. And I’ve been wondering what the world would be like if we didn’t do that in the compulsive manner that we currently do.
Tentacles. What an interesting way of thinking about it.