|The Two Realities we Live in
Hunebed D14 : early engineering in Europe's inside reality, around 3,000 BC
Inside & Outside → Extrovert & Introvert → 2 Realities we should live in
I very much like Hemingway's concept of outside versus inside, as one can apply it to many things. However both these terms are relative. One has to define one, in order to understand the nature of the other.
Most people are a combination of the two. Some lean more towards the introvert side, others are more extrovert by nature.
- Let me here apply it to the two extreme personality types (defined by the Myers Briggs Personality Index) : extroverts and introverts.
One can describe these two personality extremes in very similar ways, for :
- extroverts live very much outside themselves and need to be inside the human society for their existence,
- introverts, on the other hand, live very much inside themselves and generally prefer to remain outside the human society.
If one defines human society, or more broadly speaking the human species as the inside, what would be the outside ?
As a strong introvert, as well as a trained geologist, I consider myself within the time span of the solar system and universe. I feel very much on the outside of humanity, instead I feel I live in the universe.
Extroverts, I imagine, tend to place themselves generally more within the time frame of the human species existence on earth, which is only a blink of an eye with respect to the age of our solar system and the universe.
As human beings we should aim to nurture our awareness of both these realities.
- So there clearly are two realities we live in :
- the reality within the time frame of the human existence on earth, the inside reality, and
- the reality within the time frame of the universe, the outside reality
Introverts (even when they don't yet realize it) tend to live in the outside reality. They should therefore make efforts to take part in and contribute to the inside reality.
Extroverts mainly live in the inside reality. They should aim to break out off this limited time frame and create awareness of the outside reality.
Europe, with its multitude of strong, well defined cultures and its geologically young landscapes, is a continent where clearly the inside reality prevails. (For many this appears to be hard to break out off.)
Australia, with its still young and little defined culture, but its geological ancient inland landscape, is a unique continent to appreciate the outside reality.
My introvert view of the world
Most people travel to see things like the Colosseum, the Pyramids, the Great Wall of China, the Great Barrier Reef, or any cute erosional land feature, or attractive mountain scene. But in terms of geological time these features are inside realities, here today, gone tomorrow !
Although I do appreciate the effort and thought gone into many man made structures, my visual interest reaches well beyond that.
This is where Australia is unique. Their ancient flat inland eroded landscapes are the oldest dry surfaces in the world. Driving through these is (for me and many others) a spiritual experience beyond words.
Outside reality in central Queensland, but nowhere near as colourful and old as in WA.
I have traveled through and observed a great variety of landscapes, but the only one that ever brought tears to my eyes was in Western Australia.
Traveling one morning by car about 100km north of Kalgoorlie (in Western Australia), I went off the road, got out off my car and climbed a small hill.
In front of me stretched an endless multi-coloured plain of deep red soil speckled with bright white quarz blows and large blotches of sparkling white salt lakes surrounded by borders of bushes in a variety of greens.
Elsewhere shallow outcrops of light green volcanic rock alongside strings of dark purple ironstoneband formations. Everything lit up by the bright blue sky above.
It was the closest I ever looked at eternity on earth.
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When I picked up a rock lying in front of my feet, I knew I touched something no-one else had ever touched before and which had been in existence for 3.6 billion years !
© 2017 Michael