The Bigger Picture ~ Freeze-Frame Part 2

Layered landscapes by Nobuhiro Nakanishi
Layered landscapes by Nobuhiro Nakanishi

In my post ‘Magical Freeze-Frame Moments’ I shared with you my ways of deepening my connection with Nature. Now I’d like to share with you a sort of follow-up to what I believe is really happening in those moments, and how rather than deepening the connection they are actually simply broadening my visualisation; hence my perception of reality and the bigger picture. How I deepen my connection is how I deal with my new perceptions!


Not really, it’s the natural evolution process that each and every one of us goes through in each and every moment of each and every day in each and every sensory experience we, well, …… experience!  So, what I’m about to say is not a ‘spiritual awakening’ but a ‘human awakening’ which in turn gives us the ability to visualise the bigger picture of the world we encounter. Of course that may or may not lead us to a ‘spiritual awakening’, but that’s a deeper connection you need to explore by yourselves! So with that said, let’s start at the beginning ….

Child's Play
curiosity and wonderment

When we are born, and assuming that we’re born healthy and free of any disabilities (or special powers!) our brains are pretty much free of any recognition of the world we come into. This is why youngsters are always exploring, filled with curiosity and wonderment. Everything is a brand new experience and their brain gradually develops it’s power of recollection and recognition. The child’s senses work overtime, always distracted by new sights, smells and sounds making them want to touch and taste everything they come into contact with. The brain meanwhile is logging all of these experiences, building layer upon layer of memories, of perception, of what is the child’s reality within that given time. This continues throughout our live’s and I guess you already get the scenario. So let’s leap forward into adulthood; where our perceptions of the reality we see are pretty much cast in stone.

But are they?

Have you ever revisited a town or city and when you look around thought to yourself, ‘Hmm, it’s not the same as the last time I was here, it’s not how I remember it!’. Of course you have, you must have; because our brain only lays down a sketched outline of a landscape when we see it for the first time. Each time we look at the same location even if it hasn’t been obviously redeveloped and changed beyond our perceived recognition, we will be seeing that scene as if it was for the first time and our brain will add another layer, another dimension of perception onto what it already has stored away in its files. It grows a bigger picture and like an artist who colours in the details into their provisional sketches to create their own personal bigger picture; it too creates a new reality of what we see before us. Another example you will have experienced is when, and although you may have lived in a certain place for a very long time, you have one of those, ‘Oh I’ve never noticed that before, I must have walked past it a million times but never seen it.’ That’s because for one reason or another you never had reason to look at whatever it was that you hadn’t noticed before so your brain has never logged it as being associated with that particular environment. But now you’ve seen it, the brain will add it as a new dimension of that locations reality ‘for you’. I also bet that after one of those moments whatever it was you hadn’t spotted before becomes more prevalent and it seems that you’re now deliberately looking for it whenever you pass by. True?

adding detail to a bigger picture
adding detail to a bigger picture

This is where my ‘magical freeze-frame moments’ come in. Every time I go into them I am sending signals to my brain (or rather Nature is), my brain immediately adds layer upon layer of new experiences on top of the layers already built up from years of living and other freeze-frame moments; so my perception of my reality grows and grows and then takes those new perceptions in my own new view of the ‘bigger picture’ with my brain colouring in more and more details each and every time. I become more aware of everything around me, my sensory perceptions become honed as they travel through dimensions not experienced before. The beauty and wonder of these moments in Nature is that they are similar to those, ‘Oh I’ve never noticed that before,’ experiences. Nature in all Her changing moods and ever morphing appearances truly are ‘things I’ve (we) have never noticed before’. They are not moments missed but brand new moments of experience. Like the toddlers we started out as, our senses and therefore our brains go into overdrive and we re-experience all of those amazing feelings of curiosity and wonderment over and over again. Perhaps that’s all that spiritual awakening is, an extension of our human awareness, or is it the other way around? But as I mentioned earlier in this post, that’s a deeper connection you need to explore by yourselves!

NB: This post is not about how we are programmed and gain our perhaps misplaced prejudices, beliefs, etc.. etc.. it’s a much gentler topic based on my own thoughts of how we can expand our awareness of the reality we create by using Nature as our guide. Nothing more, nothing less.