Eye of the Beholder

Eye of the Beholder

It’s a bit of a cliche – beauty, art and inspiring images are all around us in the real world and even the least adept of us is capable of snatching a glimpse of something that goes far beyond the simple mundanity of objects in their setting.

At this very moment, i’m gazing out of my window as the setting winter sun paints an extraordinary scene that in a moment will pass. Two trees, their bare branches bowing towards each other, like old world courtiers, frame a pastel sky of grey marshmallow, suffused with a pinky-orange that defies the definition of a mere colour… such is the real world – a place where nature itself  can provide sublime beauty without prompting.

Here too, we can find surprising pictures in man-made, created things, the pomposity and arrogance of concrete and glass, the grandeur of sculpture and the architect’s whim, and the unexpected wonder in a myriad of eye-catching moments in our everyday experience.

Second Life is different – the virtual world is an entirely contrived place. Scenery and locations have been designed to catch the eye, to provoke and astonish and, unlike the real world, it is not so much a case of being in the right place at the right time to capture that perfect moment, rather it is a case of seeking out those moments already created and waiting to be discovered. 

– oooOOOooo –

In a virtual world, the simplest expression of reality is, at it’s most basic, the digital heartbeat that gives us life… ultimately, all that we experience is a matter of ‘on’ or ‘off’, ‘1’ or ‘0’, black or white…

Yet even such perfect order can speak of chaotic randomness…

And the line between purely digital…

and organic begins to blur…

prompting us to question, where does one world end, and another begin?

Although we can never doubt that we have entered a wholly different reality…

where ‘possible’ and ‘impossible’ have no real meaning…

and the waves of possibility break gently on the ethereal shore of our consciousness…

ensuring that the vista before us…

is tempered only by our imagination.

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