Monday, February 28, 2011

Controlling the Illusion - Ordering Chaos and Other All Too Human Errors

The feeling of the terrifying sublime is sometimes accompanied with a certain dread or melancholy. The feeling of the noble sublime is quiet wonder. Feelings of the splendid sublime are pervaded with beauty.
Wiki Summary - Kant's "Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and the Sublime"

The "Terrifying" Sublime
The "Noble" Sublime

The "Splendid" Sublime

Phi - Just Another Voiceless Labiodental Fricative

SOCRATES: And there is no difficulty in seeing the cause which renders any mixture either of the highest value or of none at all.

PROTARCHUS: What do you mean?

SOCRATES: Every man knows it.


SOCRATES: He knows that any want of measure and symmetry in any mixture whatever must always of necessity be fatal, both to the elements and to the mixture, which is then not a mixture, but only a confused medley which brings confusion on the possessor of it.

PROTARCHUS: Most true.

SOCRATES: And now the power of the good has retired into the region of the beautiful; for measure and symmetry are beauty and virtue all the world over.


SOCRATES: Also we said that truth was to form an element in the mixture.

PROTARCHUS: Certainly.

SOCRATES: Then, if we are not able to hunt the good with one idea only, with three we may catch our prey; Beauty, Symmetry, Truth are the three, and these taken together we may regard as the single cause of the mixture, and the mixture as being good by reason of the infusion of them.

PROTARCHUS: Quite right.
--Plato, "Philebus"

So Low Flight

Look, Glaukos, how heavy seawaves leap skyward!
Over the Gyrai rocks
hangs a black cloud, a signal of winter storm.
From the unforeseen comes fear.
--Archilochus of Paros

The time for completing circles are over, for there are no circles.
The time for connecting cycles are over, for there are no cycles.
The time for measuring space is over, for there is no space.
The time for defining time is over, for there is no time.

There is only the present.
There is only the here and now.

Everything else, an ever-spiralling illusion.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

High Flyers Fall Farther

Ovid, "Metamorphoses"
Daedalus, hating Crete and his long exile, and longing to see his native land, was shut in by the sea. "Though he may block escape by land and water," he said, "yet the sky is open, and by that way I will go. Though Minos rules over all, he does not rule the air." So saying, he sets his mind at work upon unknown arts, and changes the laws of nature. For he lays feathers in order, beginning at the smallest, short next to long, so you would think they had grown on a slope. Just so the old-fashioned rustic pan-pipes with their unequal reeds rise one above another.Then he fastened the feathers together with twine and wax at the middle and bottom; and, thus arranged, he bent them with a gentle curve, so that they looked like real birds' wings.

His son, Icarus, was standing by and, little knowing that he was handling his own peril, with gleeful face would now catch at the feathers which some passing breeze had blown about, now mold the yellow wax with his thumb, and by his sport would hinder his father's wonderful task. When now the finishing touches had been put upon the work, the master workman himself balanced his body on two wings and hung poised on the beaten air. He taught his son also and said: "I warn you, Icarus, to fly in a middle course, lest, if you go too low, the water may weight your wings; if you go too high, the fire may burn them. Fly between the two. And I bid you not to shape your course like Bootes or Helice or the drawn sword of Orion, but fly where I shall lead." At the same time he tells him the rules of flight and fits the strange wings on his boy's shoulders. While he works and talks the old man's cheeks are wet with tears, and his fatherly hands tremble. He kisses his son, which he was destined never again to do, and rising on his wings, he flew on ahead, fearing for his companion, just like a bird which has led forth her fledglings from the high nest into the unsubstantial air.

He encourages the boy to follow, instructs him in the fatal art of flight, himself flapping his wings and looking back on his son. Now some fisherman spies them, angling for fish with his flexible rod, or a shepherd, leaning upon his crook, or a plowman, on his plow-handles--spies them and stands stupefied, and believes them to be gods that they could fly through the air. And now Juno's sacred Samos had been passed on the left, and Delos and Paros; Lebinthos was on the right and Calymne, rich in honey, when the boy began to rejoice in his bold flight and, deserting his leader, led by a desire for the open sky, directed his course to a greater height. The scorching rays of the nearer sun softened the fragrant wax which held his wings.

The wax melted; his arms were bare as he beat them up and down, but, lacking wings, they took no hold on the air. His lips, calling to the last upon his father's name, were drowned in the dark blue sea, which took its name from him. But the unhappy father, now no longer father, called: "Icarus, Icarus, where are you? In what place shall I seek you? Icarus," he called again; and then he spied the wings floating on the deep, and cursed his skill. He buried the boy in a tomb, and the land was called for the buried boy.

Freudiana in a Mirror

The doctor should be opaque to his patients and, like a mirror, should show them nothing but what is shown to him.
--S. Freud

Re-Framing Re-ALL-ity

...and the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting
On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming,
And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted - nevermore!
--E.A. Poe

Thursday, February 24, 2011

La Vie Voyeur

"Nothing can be surprising any more or impossible or miraculous, now that Zeus, father of the Olympians has made night out of noonday, hiding the bright sunlight, and . . . fear has come upon mankind. After this, men can believe anything, expect anything. Don't any of you be surprised in future if land beasts change places with dolphins and go to live in their salty pastures, and get to like the sounding waves of the sea more than the land, while the dolphins prefer the mountains."
--Archilochus of Paros

Saturday, February 19, 2011


The happiest day -- the happiest hour
My sear'd and blighted heart hath known,
The highest hope of pride and power,
I feel hath flown.

Of power! said I? yes! such I ween;
But they have vanish'd long, alas!
The visions of my youth have been-
But let them pass.

And, pride, what have I now with thee?
Another brow may even inherit
The venom thou hast pour'd on me
Be still, my spirit!

The happiest day -- the happiest hour
Mine eyes shall see -- have ever seen,
The brightest glance of pride and power,
I feel- have been:

But were that hope of pride and power
Now offer'd with the pain
Even then I felt -- that brightest hour
I would not live again:

For on its wing was dark alloy,
And, as it flutter'd -- fell
An essence -- powerful to destroy
A soul that knew it well.
--E.A. Poe

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Path to Ignomy

Well... give the men a few minutes more, Sergeant...

The Faithful Hussar (Translated)

A faithful soldier, without fear,
He loved his girl for one whole year,
For one whole year and longer yet,
His love for her, he'd ne'er forget.

This youth to foreign land did roam,
While his true love, fell ill at home.
Sick unto death, she no one heard.
Three days and nights she spoke no word.

And when the youth received the news,
That his dear love, her life may lose,
He left his place and all he had,
To see his love, went this young lad...

He took her in his arms to hold,
She was not warm, forever cold.
Oh quick, oh quick, bring light to me,
Else my love dies, no one will see...

Pallbearers we need two times three,
Six farmhands they are so heavy.
It must be six of soldiers brave,
To carry my love to her grave.

A long black coat, I must now wear.
A sorrow great, is what I bear.
A sorrow great and so much more,
My grief it will end nevermore.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Take a Time Out for Love!

Sed fugit interea fugit irreparabile tempus, singula dum capti circumvectamur amore

"But meanwhile it flees: time flees irretrievably, while we wander around, prisoners of our love of detail."

What is Love?

Omnia vincit amor!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Coral "Becomes" an Octopus...

Becomes? Really? Things really are the external shapes/forms that they appear to an independent oberserver to be at any one particular point in time? Each new external form imitated constitutes a new "becoming"?

Now if you were to raise the energy state of a liquid it might appear to an independent observer to "become" something new, a solid, or conversely if you were to lower the liquid's energy state, it might again assume some familiar properties of a solid, but has the water actually "become" something entirely new in this alteration of energy states? And what happens when the energy state is normalized? Doesn't it revert to it's familiar pre-existent form for that "particular" energy state?

If you're a Leftist, ontology is a sad joke... not to be taken seriously. Every shifting fluid form constructed out of ink drops in a water current represents a new becoming...*shakes head* ...returns to Theseus' ship and rows away.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Hello Uncle Vanya

"Haven't you noticed if you are riding through a dark wood at night and see a little light shining ahead, how you forget your fatigue and the darkness and the sharp twigs that whip your face? I work, that you know—as no one else in the country works. Fate beats me on without rest; at times I suffer unendurably and I see no light ahead. I have no hope; I do not like people. It is long since I have loved any one."
- Astroff

Will There be a Next "New Cultural Configuration"?

...Or Just Perpetual Reactions to the Last One?
Edmund Husserl -
Philosophical man is a "new cultural configuration" based in stepping back from "pregiven tradition" and taking up a rational "inquiry into what is true in itself;" that is, an ideal of truth. It begins with isolated individuals such as Thales, but they are supported and cooperated with as time goes on. Finally the ideal transforms the norms of society, leaping across national borders.
F. Nietzsche -
A time which suffers from the so­-called " general education" but has no culture and no unity of style in her life hardly knows what to do with philosophy, even if the latter were proclaimed by the very Genius of Truth in the streets and market­places. She rather remains at such a time the learned monologue of the solitary rambler, the accidental booty of the individual, the hidden closet-secret or the innocuous chatter between academic senility and childhood.

Nobody dare venture to fulfill in oneself the law of philosophy, nobody lives philosophically, with that simple human faith which compelled an Ancient, wherever one was, whatever one did, to deport oneself as a Stoic, when one had once pledged one's faith to the Stoa. All modern philosophising is limited politically and regulated by the police to learned semblance. Thanks to governments, churches, academies, customs, fashions, and the cowardice of people, it never gets beyond the sigh: " If only! . . ." or beyond the knowledge: " Once upon a time there was . . ."

Philosophy is without rights; therefore modern humans, if they were at all courageous and conscientious, ought to condemn her and perhaps banish her with words similar to those by which Plato banished the tragic poets from his State. Of course there would be left a reply for her, as there remained to those poets against Plato. If one once compelled her to speak out she might say perhaps: "Miserable Nation! Is it my fault if among you I am on the tramp, like a fortune teller through the land, and must hide and disguise myself, as if I were a great sinner and ye my judges. Just look at my sister, Art! It is with her as with me; we have been cast adrift among the Barbarians and no longer know how to save ourselves. Here we are lacking, it is true, every good right; but the judges before whom we find justice judge you also and will tell you: First acquire a culture; then you shall experience what Philosophy can and will do."-
There never was nor will there ever be anything new under the sun... there's only generation from opposites... from what "is"... constantly changing. Like the vortex, Ixion's wheel never stops spinning, despite the best efforts of modern day Orphei.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Another Day In the Vortex Spent Tracing Cobwebs of Meaning Instead of Making Honey and Wax

"So that in short, the Question comes all to this; Whether is the nobler Being of the two, That which by a lazy Contemplation of four Inches round; by an over-weening Pride, which feeding and engendering on it self, turns all into Excrement and Venom; producing nothing at last, but Fly-bane and a Cobweb: Or That, which, by an universal Range, with long Search, much Study, true Judgment, and Distinction of Things, brings home Honey and Wax."
--Jonathan Swift, "Battle of the Books"

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Eros, Where Are You?

...and where do you come from?

If One is not, then nothing is...

Pythagoras taught that all things are number, and that the cosmos is created and governed by numerical principles. In the Pythagorean cosmogenesis, the derivation of the multiplicity of things in the world from an original unity is identical to the derivation of the numbers from the numerical unit, one. Moreover, this identity is made manifest in the mathematical order of the cosmos, as exemplified in the mathematical ratios of the musical scales and the geometrical principles that govern spatial extension. The Pythagoreans saw in all things combinations of eternal principles, such as Limit and Unlimited, One and Many, At Rest and In Motion. This Pythagorean vision, which sees the material world of becoming as imitating the mathematical world of being, provided the seminal insight at the foundation of Western science, both ancient and modern, and continues to manifest its profound influence today.
-- Thomas Mcfarlane on Plato's "Parmenides"