Thursday, July 03, 2008

I have a new term that I like, Searching for Dizziness that describes the energy that one feels to push the envelope, to grow, to try new things, to test one's limits and test the waters. Also, Hand author Frank Wilson sent me a link to a sailing adventure. Boats are a repository of hand skill and hand knowledge. Zac's story on the website is an illustration of the concept below and you can follow his story on his blog:

This is from Play Culture in a changing World by Marjatta Kalliala
Matti Bergström(1996) is a brain researcher. The brain stem, the cortex and the limbic system are the parts of the brain that correspond to play acting. The brain stem feeds chaotic impulses to the limbic system whereas the cortex stands for order. Bergström discusses play dominated by impulses from the brain stem (black play) and from the cortex (white play.) It is clear that Bergström's black play corresponds to Cailois' ilinx whereas white educational play mainly corresponds to competition and imitation. According to Bergström black play does not last long because the brain does not work for a long time without any kind of order.

Searching for dizziness also occurs in an adult's life in the form of parachute jumps, slalom, rally racing or motor biking. Technical developments have expanded the role of ilinx by bringing to amusement parks different kinds of machines that allow people to experience increasing vertigo.
Ilynx is the sensation of dizziness and we all remember the need we had as children to ride the edge, losing the sense of control by spinning until the usual senses went awry. Kalliala points out that there are forms of mental dizziness as well as physical in which the balance between order and chaos are deliberately tested for amusement.

John Grossbohlin sent a link to a Colonial Williamsburg slide show of hands.

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