Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Hunting Childhood

In "Honeysuckle" the speaker says, "I Blow frail bugles, hunting my childhood" (Harris 10).  What other ways do we hunt childhood?

Seeking emotional addictions.  The neurons in the brain bundle emotions which are felt regularly.  When the emotion is triggered, it is spread to every cell, the entire body.  We are physiologically affected by it, the same way we are affected by drugs.  As children when our brains are highly plastic, an emotion is generated in response to some circumstance.  The emotion if generated again (and again and again) quickly becomes a habitual mode.  As adults, hooked on our brain makeup now, though the prompting events have ended, we now create them to prevent emotional withdrawal.  Say you have post traumatic stress disorder.  As an adult, the stressful causality has likely ended.  But the fat bundle of nerves that create the stress response is very much active (and hungry! for new experiences).  It is chemical addiction to the familiar stress feeling that causes many adults to continuously seek and thrive on panic.

Basking in sensuality.  Another way we hunt childhood is through seeking colors, textures, scents, arrangements, sounds, and tastes that recall a familiar time.  Often our diet has remnants of childhood favorites/familiarities in it, as well as our clothing, our furniture arrangement, even our perfume selection!  Maybe you seek noisy environments because you grew up in a house with many people talking/yelling loudly, with TVS on, with music on.  Maybe silence disturbs you now.

The ways we hunt childhood are really endless.  But the reasons are limited.

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