A Zamora Landscape

When I was returning from Zamora I saw a landscape that caught my eye – fleeting – as the old diesel bus rose and fell while the road twisted and turned.

On one hillside were several large purple flowering Jacarandas whilst nestled between them in stark juxtaposition stood a single hardwood tree covered with dead leaves all rendered a shimmering gold in the bright morning sun.

The dry earth, yet fecund as evidenced by abundant bright flowers. The dead leaves rustling softly in the rising heat of the day. The lush purple, the dry land, the golden leaves; all in such startling contrast to each other, served to shutdown internal dialogue as the view negated all reason and explanation.

It was a landscape never before seen or imagined and as such it had a newness to it, a freshness untainted by earlier memories of previous roads or landscapes. My thinking stopped for that moment. My mind stood still, then the bus churned on and the hill was left behind us.

Sitting there on my swayback seat, I realized what a precious moment had just passed, seeing that landscape as it truly was. My mind for reasons just said was incapable of overwriting or minimizing the experience and so there, for that brief moment, a window opened unto eternity.

PS – To change context from the metaphysical domain to that of informational theory (vis a vis Claude Shannon) we could say that this experience was highly entropic. I only call this reference to mind to highlight why most experiences – like viewing television, playing video games, walking or driving through a typical American suburb – are informationally speaking, low entropic. That is, devoid of rich information.

I bring this to your attention to possibly explain why modern culture consistently serves to rob all of us of satori like experiences.


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