Piecing together desire – trench theory

A desire represents something that you need to feel complete/a need. The need may vary in intensity and maybe intellectual – desire to solve problems from thinking
emotional/sensations – desire for social connection, bonding, purpose, inspiration, passion, hope, various highs, meaning
spiritual – desire to understand the truth, beauty, clarity
We look for reward in all the 3 spheres.

But the interesting question is what is this reward?

In my experience, I’ve noticed that we use our thinking process/conceptualizations to create trenches that we try to fill. A desire is kind of like a trench, the deeper the trench the harder we try to fill it up.
Immediate gratification works more on impulses. You feel a strong impulse to do something, it instantly creates a trench and you immediately do an action that fills it up. The “reward” is acquired when you fill the trench up. Maybe this has to do with the fact that we understand everything from their opposites. So an acute lack of something makes you maximally sensitive to it. So when an acute lack is satisfied, you feel a glorious reward. There are other day to day examples, water tastes the best when your need for it is extreme/extremely thirsty. Maybe, that is why people like drama in their lives because it harnesses this play of creating trenches and filling them. This may also explain why someone may watch a horror/murder film because in contrast to the panic shown their own life’s safety is revealed. If the trench is too deep and whatever action you take just fills 5-10% of it, then its a case of depression. But there is one more aspect to this, the trench needs maintenance. You may also lose reward because of not maintaining them. It can be deepened or made shallow by changing thinking patterns or by external influences. For example: Everyday, I hear a particular song and conceptualize a situation while hearing. Each day I do it, the conceptualization gets strengthened and the reward is correspondingly more. If I stop doing it for 5 days the trench may get deep and I may enjoy the song much more. But if I leave a really long gap then the trench might have got shallow like how wax flattens with time, I would need to rekindle that memory. Maybe that is why they recommend keeping short goals so that the trench doesn’t get too deep and you lose reward. Even in romantic relationships, with time, we build a deep trench that is satisfied each time you interact with this person. That is why a breakup = some kind of depression since you have the deep trench but nothing to fill it up. I think this concept is very similar to ‘Samskaras’ in Buddhism. I realized this when I started meditating and becoming more of a neutral observer. I felt something big that I used to enjoy is missing now, whenever I maintained the observer state. Then I hit upon this idea and realized that when I plainly observe, I am not a part of this game of trenches at all and that’s what I was missing.

Scrubs vs The office

My opinion:

Scrubs: Colorful, Creative, Imaginative, Drama based, Surreal, Dreamy, open kind of humor
Scrubs is like a kaleidoscope:

The Office: Dry, creative, imaginative(domain specific), More real life based and inhibited humor
The Office is like a defined algorithm that manipulates the picture:

I enjoy both these TV serials. But my vote would go to scrubs since I can identify more with the characters. Also, according to me there is a world of a difference in the relationship between Jim-Pam vs JD-Elliot. The former is a bit bland and shows limited situations while the latter is like a rich tapestry covering so many subliminal aspects and complex dynamics of a relationship. Also, scrubs uses its imaginative, childlike, uninhibited style to explore humor.

Pending topics I wanted to write about

  • Dimensions of sex/physical + psychological
  • Fear of the dark/unknown
  • Dimensions of humans and relationship with nature
  • Overcoming fear technique – adrenaline response – spider technique
  • Talking to a tree
  • Endo-reality and Exo-reality are intrinsically perceived the same
  • We get social energy only from identification
  • Shifting into 5th dimension awareness of possibilities. How habits, preoccupations, fears greatly limit the 5th dimension.
  • Focusing on the larger picture of the jigsaw – knowing a map that extends far beyond entities in immediate perception eg: egs: participating in school, helping ppl, engg project stuff, job related
  • Attracting people towards you technique: mimicking their body language, any kinds of identification with them
  • My Lucid dream WILD’ing adventure
  • Desires get stronger the more you chase and satisfy them: sexual, romantic, situations, academic, job related etc.
  • Symbolic meaning of a light shown at the end of a tunnel or in the center of the screen in many of the dreamy song videos, psychedelic state inducing videos etc, they all seem to converge on a bright light at the center.

Intrinsic value of music

These thoughts came to me from an interesting discussion about meditation/awareness/alcohol.

I guess broadly there are 2 parts to the mind:
1. The judgment part, thinking/conceptual mind
2. Non conceptual, non judgmental awareness

  • It sometimes strikes me that, if I just hear music without association i.e. with a blank mind, I just feel plain bliss, no pleasure, no pain. Maybe this is like the 2nd part of the mind.
  • So its like, my thinking mind/conceptual mind and judgment has to switched ON for me to really get a kick out of the music(turning on the conceptual mind).

– That is why maybe after consuming alcohol, I enjoy music far more as it strengthens the activity in the thinking/judgment part of the mind and dulls the 2nd part.

– So what is the intrinsic value of music then?Is it only through associations/concepts/judgments that we feel the real pleasure/kick out of music?

Understanding higher dimensions

Higher dimensions can be imagined by looking at how you view lower dimensions. For e.g.: If you want to imagine something 4D, you need to understood how we interact with 2D objects. How would we appear to an entity who is 2D. They can only see edges (actually this edge too had 0 thickness, but for practical purposes lets assume they can see very thin edges like the thickness of a paper). Such 2D entities can never see us in our 3D entirety.

For e.g. say a circular 2D entity and we pass our finger through a paper, they would just see a circle forming with increasing diameter till its circumference is equal to that of our finger and then when we take our hand off, this circle would reduce in size and then vanish.

You(a 3D entity) can touch the center of the circle(2D entity) without breaking its edges. In a similar way, maybe a 4D entity could touch our inner organs without cutting us open.

The movie “Flatland” portrays this concept really well of 2D entities interacting with a 3D entity.
This can be supplemented with further reading about the allegory of “Plato’s cave”.

Self armor

I am really attracted to people who do not have a ‘self armor’ on. Its a kind of openness, vulnerability (not the same as naive at all). People who face their feelings squarely and who can clearly express it without feeling threatened. Also people who have understood what anger really is and have learn’t to control it. Since they have controlled anger they tend to be more polite and diplomatic. Its kind of like a rose, its totally open, helpless yet so pure and beautiful.

The reason for liking these attributes traces back to my childhood. I had some abusive(verbal) relationships of the extreme kind. It was powerful enough to really shatter me. So I had to generate this really powerful self armor, examine each weakness and patch it up with some defense of offense. Later I realized how terrible this self armor and how much better life would be without it. Then once the environment got less threatening, I started loosening it up and I can imagine how good it would feel to almost give it up.

It may not be practical in life to totally let down armor since you might meet many people who would influence you in undesirable ways. But I think its possible in a 1-1 relationship where both the people have experiential knowledge on this fact and agree to let down their armors at-least in front of each other. It takes a lot of deep intra-personal understanding of a philosophical kind, knowledge on varied perspectives and lastly free thinker abilities from both the parties. That would make an incredible difference in the ease of opening up.