I'm finding myself battling my own perception these days, a lot. Perception isn't a new topic to me. I have analyzed in hurt feeling whether it is a reasonable action for Noah's mom to feel hurt because of something I did, well, at least based on her claim. But still, perception is such a fundamental thing of human, that in this trip w/ Noah, and in the last few days when he and I were both recovering from jetlag, this is the only thing I could think of to reason how I had lost patience w/ him, and started to dislike more and more of myself → perception, is the evil cause of all human unhappiness.

    Cambodia, and the image of that place, was constantly on my mind this morning. Watched two documentaries yesterday — save my seoul, and one that talks about child trafficking in Siem Reap, the city Noah and I just visited. And this morning Noah and I were watching this really strange, and rather too realistic japanese movie called Happy Hour, in which four female friends, all in their 30s, are going through their life and struggles, like everyone of us on this planet, real, dull, pain, and 无奈. Then, everytime when someone cried in the screen, I could feel the emotion, if not touching and bringing myself to tears, at least, it would feel awkward, that makes you want to run away.

    What is it? Why human, on one hand sooo deeply touched and connected with another human being, even if the other one is only an image, a virtual strange in a screen!? I don't know him/her, but I felt the upset, the tide of emotion that this person is going through. Is this sympathy? imagination? Is this the final link that keep us sane, that deep down in our soul there is a connection to each other, however remote we become, how ever far we drift apart, however different we all are, there is a string of humanity holding us together?

    But then, why human also act in the completly opposite way, that being cruel to each other, indifferent, deceiving, even many times outwright bullying and humiliating!? Why? and what makes one doing one more than the other? Do we have all have both sides on us, just that social rule, education, self-discipline, and any other random idea that comes across my path, that reins me from being the bad one? Well, isn't also these random idea that defines what is good and what is bad? So they are their own judge and you are being put in a race one couldn't win!?

    What is it? Why can someone achieve such a noble thing, like the guy in the The Last Samurai who has such a firm belief in their cause, and acted with their soul and heart? and at the same time, someone who tramped on everything to get his gain, but justified just the same?

    The guy in this Happy Hour movie who is divorcing one of the women. He is a rigid scientist, but honestly I couldn't see what is bad about him — and yet, all the women seem to see through him and criticized him for being cold and impossible to live with! I don't understand their POV, but I'm sure they have a point, otherwise, why they say and act so uniformly, and being full confidence in their statement? ← I'm not one who can be convinced easily. But I would admit their conclusion even though I don't understand a bit of how they derived their points.

    How bizarre! Then Noah got up really early in morning, partly due to his jetlag, partly because he could watch TV. I told him that he was a good boy at Taikang because there were night shift staff entertain him if he got up early. So being fair, it was really just my perception of him being a good boy because I didn't have to get up w/ him and keep him entertained! So really, his being good or bad is nothing but a result of my own's condition → when I'm well rested and lighthearted, I find him pleasant, smart, the best travel buddy to have; then, I'm tired, grumpy, occupied by memory and criticism of his mom's handling of him, I put on a negative lens... So in the end, he has always been, him; it's me who has shifted from one end of the happiness spectrum to the other, and venting my frustration and annoyance on him, and this, is what I'm battling w/ — my own perception.

    So in the end, one is the enemy of his/her own. It is not bipolar; it is nature. Like what I'm convinced that one's weakness is bound to be the strength, I'm also convinced, that what I'm feeling is not only natural, but insolvable. I can only feel and sense this world through perception. It is the only way to function and react. Yet, it is also the thing that creates an emotion in you, that makes this world an unhappy place, and myself an unpleasant person to be.


    — by Feng Xia


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