Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Can you put planks across an abyss

Max Planck is said to have said (I hesitate assuming he wrote in German, and myself finding translations often lead to distortion):

Science ... means unresting endeavor and continually progressing development toward an aim which the poetic intuition may apprehend, but which the intellect can never fully grasp...

I like this quote. I don't like where I found it, in a book which has the phrase "Quantum-Mystical" in the title. You might think that is what I have been pointing to, and you would not be wrong. But I don't like this labeling of the unknown. It violates the very nature of the unknown. The thinking that Jan Cox demonstrated was that you carry rational thought as far as possible. You cannot then, plant a flag on some further territory.

Words obscure the reality of the mystical as much, even more, than they clog the apprehension of the knowable. In the latter though, words serve an important function.

So it makes no sense to find an edge ,and say aha. Here is what I meant. No, you have thereby, in the flagging of it, lost it.

Yes, it is tough. There are of course, rewards along the way.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Is it fair to blame religion on religion?

Religion was once an answer. Because it no longer is, does not mean that the question prompting it is gone. And anyway, few ever,EVER, got the point of religion. So few--- that it makes sense to ask---- can you blame religion ON religion. 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The Awe of Edge

The reality to which the Work, to use Gurdjieffian terms, or TKS (This Kind of Stuff) as Jan Cox termed it, briefly, points is slender, beautiful, and is perhaps, all that can accurately be called "the real." This moment when the new is first apprehended, is lost when memory, when anticipation pile on. What if though, it is true, that reality is that momentary fragment and all else is figment? 
The glimpse of a new celestial body, is only fresh briefly, and yesterday it happened to a lot of people. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

Words and Their Limitations

As if I had any other topics, being as how this blog is about the teachings of Jan Cox. He said, you may recall, that "you have to make your own maps".  But a good example occurred recently. And the point of this story is any speaker has to recall that any speech ---- is only a partial aspect of something larger. Let's go beyond, for once, counting dandelion petals, (my normal example of the edge of the unknown in discourse.) The point of my story below, is how you always, philosopher or grocery shopper -- in speech -- that you are only getting part of the story. 

The story--- I had observed this homeless person, younger than me, before, and started talking to him in the grocery parking lot which was part of our larger neighborhood. It was very interesting, -- a nearby church benignly allows their creek side camping area to continue. And I, referring to his comrades, said--- 

"are they violent people?"

He said,

oh no, but eh, sometimes it's so weird I just have to get away.

He thought I was asking why he walked around the neighborhood so much. What I meant by my question, "are they violent," was, am I in danger.

My surmise is that this situation typifies not just chatter, but, the content of most books. 
It may be that ignoring the layers in verbal situations, is the reason history seems like tumbling arguments that only look like progress. People assume they are addressing the same issues; writers only assume they are engaged in a dialogue with the past.  Actually they are missing the purpose, the point of some previous argument. Analysts rarely start by asking about a statement, what is it in response to. 

Or, at least, that is part of an answer to a question about the mysteries of human discourse..

Monday, June 15, 2015

History or story

The document placed limitations on the king. It was actually of immediate benefit to a small segment of the populace-- the nobility, but it established a tradition of the rule of law. This is a familiar story but we are not talking about Runnymede. We are talking about Hungary's Golden Bull less than 7 years after the Magna Carta. Why have historians forgotten the Golden Bull?. This forgetting lets us consider the English saga as nobler than it actually was. Recalling this detail of Hungarian history allows us to glimpse historical progress of a broader scope. Both events raise the question of the mechanisms of history--- is there a larger kind of progress which minimizes the contributions of "heroes." The Axis Time events suggest  this possibility. Were the Magna Carta and the Golden Bull parts of an on-going articulation of humanity?

King John, or II  Andras were not confused about whether they made their own fate, but modern historians default to this notion of the plucky individual battling his fate. And it can distort their evaluation of events. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

I am sorry Professor Tim Hunt lost his job

I am sorry Professor Tim Hunt lost his job. The feminist outcry over
his comments about women demonstrates --- that some women--- ARE
crybabies. Just as he said. Where is the amused detachment which would
be an intellectual response to his jokes. Why didn't a tone of "oh,
what a cute dinosaur," manifest in reviews of his comments.

Instead, a prevalent tone of indignation revealed ignorance about
history, and a sad reliance on public opinion as a clue to the
mechanisms of reality.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

It's just a question

Today's headline from Aeon (online newsletter):

                                                                    Hive consciousness

What if --- this group mind is actually how Humanity operates now and always has? Language is one pointer in this direction. What if the reality of an "individual mind" is actually the rarely realized goal of mystics throughout history.  Or would be, if binary thought was more than a tool useful for chopping up the external macro world. For in fact the human organism is both tied together and capable of acting independently. And my counter example just highlights the nature of binary rational thought: everything is either this or that. Sorry Soren, it really could be -- both.