1 min read

Content and prompt

I'm noticing two ways of relating to an experience:

  1. Experience as Content. I liked that, it was good. I didn't like that, it was bad. I didn't care about that. I was bored.
  2. Experience as Prompt. What did that remind me of? What do I think about that? What experience is this like? What is this different from? Why does that matter?

Or, to put more of a point on the second way: "What do I feel inspired or motivated to do as a result of this experience?"

Or: "What could change?"

And then having described these this way I almost want to say the second is better, and that seems wrong. More maybe that I've been spending a lot of time in the first mode and lately I've been working more with the second and finding the change refreshing. The first way feels more ephemeral (in the moment?), and the second more analytical (historical). Maybe there is a better frame for the first.

More concretely I'm thinking about thinky-talky YouTube videos, for example Visakan Veerasamy's chat with Malcolm Ocean, or AnRel's videos about anarcho-relating, and also about pithy quotes like those in Tracts of the Sun. One of today's Tracts of the Sun quotes is about "the unnecessary complications manufactured by attempting to edit life, as if it were a film... a 'dualistically coherent movie.'" I can relate to these as content/vibes, and that is easier. "Taking experience as prompt" in a pointy way is harder. It's worth it.

(and yet, what's left of the first? what could we make of "experience as content" that's worth it? something to think about.)