You might wonder about the validity of Feelingwork feeling state mapping images. I’m proposing that it is as if the raw material of feeling is generated through a simulation of substance, with all the diverse variability of real-world substances and more. By asking these questions, we are supporting someone becoming aware of what is already there. The experience of answering the questions is one of self-discovery, increasing self-awareness, and a clarification of inner experience.
But what does it mean to say that the mapping questions support someone becoming aware of what is “already there” versus simply generating arbitrary products of imagination? How do we know we’re not just “making it up?” Several factors suggest the mapping process is engaging something more than mere imagination.
This tangible and repeatable something-ness about feeling suggests we are in fact documenting an essence, an entity, that is “already there.” It’s as if the questions function to shift your attention from one mode to another, and in a similar way that an optical illusion will reveal its alternate identity with a shift in attention, feeling steps out from behind its cloak of invisibility to reveal itself to us in all its magnificent detail.
One day in a lab somewhere, researchers will hook people up to machines in such a way as to demonstrate a correspondence between these feeling state images and the activity and structure of the brain. When that happens I suspect a number of people will find more compelling reasons to accept the “reality” of this inner phenomenon because it will create an intersection with their current knowledge. In the meantime, we’re working in soft reality, in the realm of subjective experience which still stands outside the boundary of what current science can engage with confidence. For now, I believe the kinds of correspondences and behaviors I mention here serve well enough to demonstrate the something-ness about feeling. What do you think?