World’s Largest Eye Contact Experiment – Boulder, CO
October 14th, 2015
By Hollis Taylor
When I first became aware of the event happening in downtown Boulder, CO, I was impressed with the continuous practice of peace by Boulderites and other local hippies. This time though I wanted to be part of it – witness it. If not for myself to believe this stuff ACTUALLY happens in the world but maybe also to lift it up. When we choose to use our precious time on activities we are giving it our highest regard and spending a rare commodity that cannot be recouped. I also was inspired to nudge my partner in “Let’s Dance”, Bright Hawk, to join me for the ride. She was sure she could play her hang and experience eye contact with people and I was excited to try it out with her.
First of all, the event was worldwide. Everywhere in the world people were sitting in the city streets staring into each other’s eyes as if it was more entertaining then our TVs and computers. The human connection, face 2 face eye contact, is a rare event these days. Try to just go shopping for a day and see what percentage of people are willing to meet your eyes. As people sat it was easy to approach a person for eye gazing, a simple smile and motion of the eyes as if to say “Mind if I gaze into your eyes”? People were already connecting as we arrived and I was eager to get Bright Hawk playing her Hang PANArt.
I know that the vibrations and sounds that she creates from the instrument bring feelings of peaceful joy and gently uplifted souls, so I was ready to see how this would enhance the experience. I noticed how people’s faces lit up as they listened to the gentle soothing music of the Hang PANArt. I sat to gaze into the eyes of Bright Hawk and was erupted into joyful laughter and uplifted spirit. I hoped others would take advantage of such a rare opportunity.
I moved to other people sitting on the sidewalk with little pillows and blankets. I felt my eyes well up at how welcoming everyone was, even to someone rather unusual looking like me. I was Welcomed and Celebrated in the eyes of these peace keeping gazers! Inspirational words rang through my head as if my keyboard should be right in front of me in order to not lose that moment. Instead I just soaked it up and instead repeated the mantra in my head while I sat and f0cused on my companions eyes. In the middle of the most amazing city, the city I call home, Boulder, CO!
There were musicians playing near but their flavor of music was not very appropriate for the event but since it was public space there was little to be done. This was the only part I didn’t care for. I was grateful Bright Hawk had accepted the invitation to come along. Bright Hawk’s music filled the space more evenly and I noticed others had sat to stare into the eyes of the composer and Hang PANArtist. Her music was really spectacular and set the stage in a peaceful uplifting way. Calming the mind from all the chaos around us and allowing us all to better connect with our inner humanity. In each moment as I sat, stared into the eyes of my fellow peace keepers and listened to Bright Hawk’s music I was filled with the knowing. The knowing that our wisest leaders speak of. Knowing that everyone is connected, everyone wants peace, everyone desires the same love – connections – peace. We are all the same and its all in the eyes. The eyes are the windows into the soul!
As I stood back and watched others step up to stare into each others eyes I recognized an emotion that I liked to harvest and encourage. Compersion, the feeling of joy at other people’s love, filled my heart at the moment I stood to the side watching all those people stare into each other’s eyes. I was so happy they were all experiencing it that I was filled with that under-rated emotion. Compersion, I soaked in the feeling for as long as I could. The emotion filled my heart and soul in way that gave me hope for the future. Hope for something inspirational in our future. A hope for the future that was filled with human connection, peace keepers, and compersion.