Solipsistic Solitude (and the Knowing Fish)

A non-signing hearing person typically imagines that deafness = isolation. Or, they cannot imagine that! It's kinda of a hearing bias.

If you are hearing and know no or little sign language, you might find yourself isolated in a gathering of Deaf friends lively chattering in ASL. Logically, deafness has nothing to do with isolation. It's just a matter of context.

Like hearing people, Deaf people are in the range of all colors of personality, including introverts and extroverts. Enough for now. Let's enjoy a poetic philosophy of the Knowing Fish.

The 4-minute poetic video "Solipistic Solitude: Knowing Fish (2003) by literary media artist Jolanta Lapiak narrates about an experience of being and existence. The video, based on a mix of philosophy on solitude and Zen parable, speaks for itself. See either version of ASL or English below.

Note that the color of the circle identifies a fish -- white and orange. The ASL captioning shows conversations between the white fish and the golden fish, using a color code around the signer.

ASL Version

English version

In summary, two intelligent fish discussed about existence, knowledge, and complementarity of solitude and connection. Humans are connected to each other in physical proximity, yet their perceptions and experiences are eternally untransferable to one another; thus, they are radically alone, that is is solipsism, the reality of self. Solitude is also sometimes associated with creativity and originality.

Related posts

You might be interested in another perspective on the sound and silence.

Also see Deconstruct W.O.R.D.: a poetry performance.