What the #$*! do we know!?

A while back, I read that Not So Single Guy had experienced a movie that literally rocked his perception of self and the world to its core. It challenged his assumptions on issues of love, religion, consciousness, reality, physics, emotions, and perception. In short, the movie challenged everything he knows and left him thinking... what the #$*! does he know?

Thus the title of this movie, which came from the evolution of its making, as the directors constantly faced new ideas and new ways of thinking. As you can already tell, I rented this movie and watched it already. Just now, in fact. The psychologist in me was too intrigued, and I was amazed how many of the ideas I had formulated about what I think God is, how religion and spirituality are not one in the same, and how we are active agents in our own lives making choices and (in a sense) selecting emotional paths, were all reflected in this movie. And of course, they brought up so many ideas I'd never considered, ways of thinking we'd just assume were silly or new age, or too stuffy and academic. This movie brought out the interconnectedness of everything in a very accessible way -- it was a mixture of a fictional story with a backdrop of conversational interviews with people from various fields of physics, psychology, anaesthesiology, and theology. It's relatable, and in that, I think it causes anyone open enough to it, to start asking questions. To engage in conversation.

The interviews on the B side were an insightful companion piece to the movie, that brought out the intentions and thought to its creation. The directors touch on the control and the surrender of the process. Very fascinating stuff!

I especially liked the dialogue on our perception of time. As many of you know, I am intrigued by time: our perception of it, how it is explained by science, and the ways in which we use it to confine and liberate ourselves. In the movie, one of the interviewees talks about how we can only experience the past through memory and we have no control over it. Yet our actions can affect what happens in the future; we just have no conscious experience of what the future will be.

Think about that. We live with this duality in ourselves in the present now, as you sit here now reading these words. Think back to a past moment that caused you to stop and ask yourself if your life is more than you think it is. It was a defining moment in memory, yes? Yet that is the totality of your access to it. You cannot change what you have already done. But more importantly, as you close your web browser and step away from the computer, there is possibility for change everywhere, in how you choose to treat a coworker, how you respond to a friend's words, or in the route you take on your way home. I feel, if we are to change anything in this world we do not like, we start by changing ourselves. And that involves shaking things up, asking questions, and being open. I think that's a powerful gift we all possess. But what the #$*! do I know?


Robert said...

I haven't seen or read "What the Bleep do we Know?" yet but I've read and experienced plenty of strange things since I first started play Morton's List and began to study Wicca.

Allie D. said...

That movie literally hurt my brain, and I thought that it had a tendency to mislead people into thinking it was hard science (by using scientists rather than philosophers) when it really was not.

Your explanation of the film was much more digestible, and while I believe that there are some good philosophical concepts introduced, I felt there were some obvious scientific biases and misrepresentations. I researched the Ramtha School of Enlightenment - the group who made this film, and boy did I feel enlightened. ;)

This movie was made in Olympia and released there around the same time Farenheit 9/11 came out. I went and watched it and I came out with my head scrambled. lol

Zeke said...

So where did you pick up this movie?

Bryan said...

Hello Chris and Allie, I just wanted to comment on Allie's saying that the movie was presented as scientific fact when it was philosophy. In my opinion, the only things in the movie presented as scientific fact were the scientific facts, and then interpreted within the context of this philosophical beliefs the film makers hold. I respect your feeling that the facts were mispackaged, maybe there wasn't a clear enough distinction made between what is fact and what is opinion, but a collection of interviews might be hard to debraid when in one sentence an interviewee will state a fact and then in the next breath his or her opinion about what those facts or scientific observations mean.

Just had to throw that in there, had to defend this movie that, while hokie MUCH of the time, has some good ideas in it.

Army said...

Zeke, I subscribe to Netflix. That's how I got the movie. I love my Netflix : )

And yeah, there is definitely some kooky talk in the show you have to take with a pinch of salt. But it's worth it for the mental stimulation.

Zeke said...

funny enough it was on Showtime last night so I dvr'd it, I realized i had caught part of it before but it was nice to see the whole thing. definitely a good reminder about positive thinking.