Clockwork Purple, November 13, 2017
Random Book – Inner Vegas by Joe Gallenberger PhD
Random page 117 was chosen by Gail, and random line 6 by Charles.
It is challenging to keep rolling
Alexis set the timer for 46 minutes. = 10:56
Everywhere I look within the whole Universe things are rolling, spinning, and revolving. It’s revolting! Can’t we just settle down and sit still for a while? It can be so pleasant to just smile and to just sit quietly and look at a picture of a smiling person.
I have sat quietly and looked at the painting of the Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci for hours at a time and it hasn’t moved for five hundred years. Nearly everyone who has seen the painting up-close has been moved by that painting. I was moved by it enough to get a high-quality image of it onto my computer and after viewing it for many hours decided to restore it to its original condition.
Five hundred years had built up many layers of dirt, and the varnish from previous attempts to protect the paint had crazed and discolored. Previous attempts to remove the previous varnish to expose the original so the painting could be viewed better had also injured it. It is amazing that it has survived all the years and the abuse. My computer restorations won’t interfere with the original, so I didn’t feel any guilt for spending a couple of months restoring it to my personal satisfaction. I had to do that and then print it out at the highest possible quality so I visit with the “real” Mona Lisa.
Now I visit with Mona Lisa often and we observe one another closely. We never speak or touch but we do communicate deeply. Ours is a wholly visual experience, but it results in strange and challenging thoughts pouring through my mind. I don’t expect a five-hundred-year-old painting to talk to me; it is my own mind that is talking to me, but that mind is influenced by the expressions and attitudes that Leonardo knew and carefully worked into the painting. He kept the painting with him for many years, possibly until his death, and was reported to have frequently made tiny strokes of almost transparent paint. I believe that is true because I can see things happening in my own mind while I view it that only a profound intelligence could discover. When working on it for those few months the effort was aimed at getting to what Leonardo was saying to himself in his deeper inner explorations.
One of the characteristics of this painting is that the eyes actually move and follow me as I move. They don’t sort of move, they really do move, they shift, they roll, they clearly move and keep looking into my eyes, and beyond my eyes into the back of my brain and into my mind. Lisa looks into my innermost thoughts. I blink with anxiety and try to look back at her but I can’t help blinking; it isn’t in fear, I’m not afraid of some old paint; it’s because of the anxiety it generates in my own mind. It is because I hesitate to look that far into my own being, and looking closely into Lisa’s eyes while she follows my thoughts is what’s challenging.
It is challenging to keep rolling with her incessant probing into more than my thoughts, into more than my mind, into more than my physical presence, NO! It’s a probing into my whole existence, into the existence of all that I have known, into my whole human species, and into my whole Universe. Hers is a probing into the totality of the infinity of everything.
It is challenging to keep rolling with these ideas when I can’t keep up with her, but Mona Lisa does keep going and she insists that I keep trying. And so I do try! And … so I do try, but always come up short and blink.