4000  The walls of a Buddhist monastery, a gumba the place of idols, are covered with images of the innumerable, venerable Buddhas.  They are the great individuals, the giants of the religion, above the gods.  Reincarnation, reincarnation, reincarnation, the compassionate bodhisattvas.  The wheel goes around.

 

Buddhism, in its most common expression of itself, is extreme nominalism.  Universals are only words, words, words, mere concepts, blockages to enlightenment.  There is only the just that.  And that gives way to emptiness.  The Buddhas understand.  They stand above it all.  The Great Individuals.  My poor religion of the Logos, the Intoxication of the Forms, the beautiful gods, boys running wild around their ecstatic lovers, trembles.  Lovers tremble.  Lovers love the thrill of trembling.  The serene Buddhas look down and roll their eyes in disbelief.

 

Realism is toxic; it is the flight of the arrow.  It is the glory before the crash.  It is the one more time.  It is God as Beloved.  The ornaments of love dangle and sparkle up.  Strength strength strength, then the crash.  The escape into presence.  The Grin.  The white pearl.  Running down your leg.  Pharma.  He's coming. 

 

 

 

4001  I write a smooth intoxication. The arrow flees. The mind flies.  Too high.  Bang!  Your head hits the wall.  Brahma has captured the boy of God.  Isa laughs.  A night of silence.  Then the tumult.  Your head aches.

 

Around and around, the words make no sense.  The nausea of English.  The Spirit proceeds.  The boy keeps it up.  I write.  Time times itself precisely.  Pleasant fatigue.  Peasant intrigue.  The shepherd shops around, at times, for another lover.  The wind blows from his steppe. 

 

Smooth legs, glistening teeth, what does it all mean?  The gentle moan.  Breath sufflates my words.  His burning oxygen goes right into my throat.  Smooth lungs, glistening tongues, the boy is so mean.  I walk the night remembering. Smooth breezes play with my head.  Shadows beckon.  But it's only writing writing itself.  The same words.  The same self blame.  The ardent flame.  A hackneyed game.  A night mare.  The same as before.  I wait for another time.  It surely comes.  It is almost here now.  The poison seeps about.  Isa will wash me clean. 

 

 

 

4002  One can usually make sense of a difficult piece of writing by taking the voice out of it and leaving it to lie there clothed in the purity of logical symbols.  What we cannot speak we then pass over in silence.  Pure writing, sans voice, is the place of pure meaning.  The voice pollutes. The voice brings one too close.  The intimacy bewilders.  The discomfort of breath on ear repels.  We want him to back off.  Or we invite him closer.

 

 

 

4003  The Uncertainty Principle governs quantum physics.  There is an analogous something in philosophy.  With the epochè one blocks out all consideration of everything other than what is directly being looked at.  You are alone with just that.  The intimacy is immense. The certainty of its presence is very certain.  You and That.  And no one else.  And there is the rub.

 

You have purchased direct vision and the power of sure presence at the price of being outside any community of thinkers.  Such philosophical contemplation is a very very unsocial thing.  The epochè is so strong.  More than merely non-social, it can be anti-social, because you are seen to be megalomaniac in your insisting you see "sure existence", that you are intimate with "what is".  The social person is properly humble and so unsure of himself as to always give others the possible favored place.

 

Such solitary contemplation is powerful, but socially meaningless.  Power vs. meaning.  Philosophy is the flight of the alone to the Alone.  Good luck.  The more energy you have in thought the less you have a place in community.  Timeless and placeless, you burn.

 

 

 

4004  Following Zizek, my take on the dynamics of modern America is this: we need to find a way around our guilt and stop the destructive force we have, so innocently, let loose. Our method is straight forward. Our time is short. We all here lead marvelous lives of lawless consumption and consumptive lawlessness. (We often call it "freedom" instead of "lawlessness".) So here you are in life and you discover that maybe you have gone too far in your ways. Things are starting to fall apart – your family, your health, your business, your sanity, your love life, your studies, your teeth - your future is in jeopardy. You need to do penance – fast - and get right with … with whatever it is that's going to make things better.

 

Perhaps you are a religious fundamentalist, which, by the way, if well equipped in taking care of this matter. Then you simply do the penance of sitting through some boring church services, listening to the preacher tell you how bad you have been. (It feels good to hear it.) Then he will take you to Jesus, who will ask you to promise to be good. You display that worried look about your life (this part is real because you really have gotten things screwed up) and when you look up you are marvelously forgiven! You are free of your past and He will make things better. Then you can go back to doing exactly what you did before.

 

Perhaps you are not religious at all, no matter, the same method works. Instead of going to church, go to a boring political meeting and listen to them tell you how bad you are as an American, using 25 percent of the world's energy, starting wars, literally taking food out of the mouths of babes. The list goes on and on and we flagellate ourselves and feel so bad about what we are. ( It feels good to feel so bad.) Then we are offered a way out. We simply have to give some money, only a little, enough to buy a cup of Starbucks coffee and a little girl in Guatemala can live for the next year. Or we can donate our time and effort explaining to the people how bad we and those evil governments we support really are. It's boring work but penance is supposed to be painful. Soon we will feel the love of that little girl coming at us and we are forgiven and everything will be all better with our falling apart lives. She will make it so. Then you can go back to doing exactly what you did before.

 

 

 

4005  Am I a Spinozist?  Is there only Being being itself?  And its modes.  If I am in love with the beauty of A…, are A, the beauty, the love, and I myself only God with God?  Is God precisely that?  No equivocation.  Just that.  Perhaps.  But only in the philosophical vision.  For a lover, God is the All in All.  Is that a pantheism?  Yes, I affirm all things.  God overwhelms me.  That boy, A…, is the complete godhead.  I easily arrive at the final thing.  I spin and spin and spin and he oozes onto me, in me, and his teeth bite. 

 

 

 

4006  The metaphor of metaphor is rampant today in theories of cognition.  The idea is that whatever is a metaphor is a mere metaphor.  That it is not real.  That the reality indicated by the metaphor is vastly different from the image produced by contemplating the metaphor. Strictly speaking, what is referred to as metaphor is more properly called an analogy, but that word is loaded with past philosophy.  Metaphor is a nice poetic word.  For my purposes here it makes no difference, except that metaphor is even less real, but is in turn more "scientific" than "fanciful image".  So metaphor it is, half grounded in reality, but finally not much.

 

I have written this:  Philosophy is a falling in love.  Eternal Forms dancing all around you.  Capturing you when they appear in someone's eyes.  Hiding in some little movement that only you can see.  Doing gentle violence to your heart.  Making your hair be out of place when your love appears.  It's Eros.  The perpetrator of this torment.  The oldest and the youngest of the gods.  The lord of the house.  Still walking the streets.  Still sleeping on doorsteps.  Still able to enchant you with words.  A ragtag boy.  Pieces of clothing here and there.  Bits of color.  Unordered.  Breaking dishes.  Beautiful in spite of the fact that you think he isn't.  Your confusion.  Just stay with him.  No one else can love as he loves.  And know for sure that when he's by himself, looking at himself, he shows himself his own refined form, enjoying a self-confidence that he knows goes with perfection. Knowing it's all impossible.

 

The cognitive scientists, and almost everybody else, would say that that is metaphor at best, but probably just nonsense, and maybe dangerous.  I didn't write it as metaphor but as Being Itself.  I am a theist.  And an incarnationist. 

 

The cognitive scientists, it is true, say that our "abstract" ideas are "of the flesh", but then in saying that they mean, "only" of the flesh, that they are not real, because the flesh is so far from "scientific fact".  There is a  paradox is there somewhere, but then scientists doing philosophy are new bothered by such things.  Like good "Platonists" they devalue the flesh, a thing which Plato himself never did. 

 

I don't deal in metaphor.  I deal in the real.

 

 

 

4007  The main difference between "cognitive science" and my way of doing philosophy is that they are in love with long Latinate words and I love the little Anglo-Saxon.  They love the "abstract", the highly intellectual, the multi-layered.  I love the simple thing right there, just that.  They are into social communication and thus anything once or twice removed from any "real" thing, which it turns out can never be reached anyway.  I am a solitary seer.  The existing thing is with me.  The "subjectivity" of social life is gone.  The boy lies beside me.  His smell drives into me.  The god is existence is here. 

 

 

 

4008  We live in Rome, home of the Great Whore.  The great Government.  The mighty Edifice.  The mighty institution – Science.  We have long, complicated Latinate sentences that hold the mind in slavery.  Empty moaning.  Cognitive Science!  The Explainer of everything.  The Decider of Fate.  The Experiment!  High Abstraction.  Death itself.  As impressive as Hell.

 

Still for all that, I love Latin and the Satyricon boys delight me.  I imagine those lovely German Knaben hanging around the Imperial Houses regaled and loved.  Such attractive decadence.  Such seduction.  Such brutality. 

 

 

 

4009  The philosophers of the embodied mind, of the philosophy of the flesh, of cognitive materialism, mean to point your thinking not to the visible body as the real meaning of our most abstract thoughts, but to the invisible inside of that.  I have pointed to the appearing outer surface.  Thus I have a philosophy of boys, the openly outward, the glorious light of power, the show boy.  Those others look to the hidden and the inward feelings, dark liquid movements of silent meanings, the deep well of forgotten things carved on the brain. They look to the womb of life.  The difference is momentous.   

 

 

 

4010  The modern intellectual seems to be mesmerized by the scientific "innards" of the things that appear.  The appearances surely don't really exist. The blue of the sky, the red of his lips, the smell of the wind, the feel of tight jeans slipping down are all, it is almost universally thought, only the productive workings of the inner machine of neural networks and spinning electrons.  Literally nothings at all.  It is a paralysis of thought that has been with us for a long time now.  Why?

 

This is the return to Nature.  To the birth of all the things we see.  To the dark thing from which it all came.  The beauty of Nature is a lie.  It is deception that easily yields and the horror is revealed.  The inner machine pounds and pounds and the living product is ejected.  Beauty is evasion and at its extreme it reaches the Sublime, the mystery seen as thought in a mirror that the seer might be safe.  Beauty is the outer surface, which when broken, as thought it is the breaking of a hymen, dissolves in the chthonic.

 

The Medusa could not be viewed directly or madness came.  The shield of Athena held it image in order to weaken the enemy.  That is what we have here blocking thought, leading the mind into confusion.  I have tried to break the spell.

 

 

 

4011  Karl Marx wrote, "…Christ the mediator between God and man – simple means of circulation between one and the other – becomes their unity, the God-man and then, as such, becomes more important than God; the saints become more important than Christ; and the priests more important than the saints."  Perhaps in my philosophy the mediator between the Eternal and the ordinary on earth, visible beauty, the boy, has become the most important.  The boy between the Boy and the soul.  The ladder becomes more important that the vision at the top.  Or maybe not.                   (The phallic ladder?)

 

The boy, the least of these, is jesus is Christ is the Christ is the Logos is logic is thought is my thinking is me!  Yes, I mediate between all that and you, dear reader.  Unfortunately, the thinking mind, the dialectically attuned, finds the nexus everywhere and all things are provable.  Every thing is the most important and the least.   And the nexus itself is the most baffling.  Still, for all that the ride is mighty pleasant.  Until it isn't.   The circulation is money, the great mediator, the god of the modern world, universal man, pure myth by this smith.

 

 

 

 

4012  Harold Bloom writes that we use language either as a tool for magic or for the creation of the Nothing.  The gods or nihilism.  And that perhaps at the extreme of language it is both.  I write the gods and orgasmic oblivion.  It's intellectual, it's of my flesh (and now of yours), it's real.  It is real because I say it is.  This is performance, not mere information.  Or it is not.  Legerdemain.  A little hand-action.  Boy stuff.

 

This is not decadent symbolism.  I do not deal in metaphors or symbols or any other indirect instrument.  I go to the thing itself and I name it.  It is then right there – just that.  The end.

 

Have I failed at plain English?  Has the detour of today's materialism left you unable to grasp what is at hand?  Are you a computer image freak?  Is the world only a mirror for your own lovely/unlovely innards?  The boy is sitting right there, do you want him?  He is the final thing.

 

 

 

4013  Should we say that fact F(a) mediates between F and a?  As the god-man Jesus mediates between God and man – or is that too far fetched?  Is there something that can mediate between those two sentences?  Whatever, is the world of facts (the world is all that is the case) "between" materia signata (bare particulars or, maybe, fragments of space-time) and the Eternal Forms, the Mind of God or, maybe, a goodly shape?  Matter, world, God.  What would an old-time positivist say?  Would his descendents have time to bother themselves with my metaphysical urges?  Maybe if I dressed it down in academic dowdiness.

 

The boy bulges. He is the knot, the knur, the ganglion, that strangely attracts the chaos in the academic mind.  Right in the middle of smooth space, the gentle void, the stay-at-home locations of the rationally coordinated, there emerges the knucklehead kneading it bad.

 

The clutch, the club climbing in clouds, globs and gluteus cleavings, non-linear nights here and then gone.  Gleet.  He nods. 

 

Analytic philosophy has succeeded in corralling him.  There was no other reason for its great concern.  Some things are obvious.

 

 

 

4014  Science is an institutional thing.  Professorships, Endowed Chairs, colloquia, seminars and symposia.  Thesis defense committees, peer review, publishers of note, journals of repute, emeriti.  This is Rome.  It is the Church controlling this new ancient theo-philosophico-social Mass of the Ecclesial Establishment.  Authority increases.  Order is educed.  The Beast of human happiness appears.  The producer in the Economic House.

 

We experiment on the people. The people are made content.  At death each person will have served his part.  Up to the gods.  Of established happiness.  Or we give them drugs that they might concentrate on this their only task.

 

Every quality is reduced to quantity. And led out digitally up your cerebral cortex where Nature loves to hide.  Science serves the Great Whore.  It wields Her power.  It coheres.

 

 

 

4015 Part prose-poem, part ontological analysis, visions of Platonic realism as you climb the steps of the Scala Paradisi.  Eros Uranos.  Madness and an incarnation descending.   I have not tried to avoid philosophical perplexity by jumping into science.  I am not mesmerized by science as are almost of the others.  I have not been afraid of the whirlwind.  Things separate. The roaring river is overhead.  Words are overheard.  The rhythm is maintained.

 

 

 

4016  We use language to refer to the world and all the things of Being.  Language refers to what is not language.  Modern philosophy seems to have forgotten that.  Today's philosophy uses language to refer to … to nothing at all; it is only language languaging language, and in that it hopes to solve all the problems of philosophy. Such navel gazing will amount to … to nothing.  Nihilism reigns.

 

Sometimes it calls itself cognitive science and it speaks of the syntax of neural networks, another name for language.  Sometimes it speaks of Information and isomorphism, sometimes meaningful context, sometimes psycho-social signs, symbol, seme, icon, index, rheme, scream, everywhere language engaged with language.  The real and the present are nowhere.  The world is lost.

 

Philosophy is ontology is a contemplation of what exists.  Of what exists!  Being comes at you.  The world presses.  The beloved demands your attention.  The thing, that unavoidable that, exists.

 

 

 

4017  Usually today when a person speaks of the real world he is thinking of the social world.  He is usually not thinking of the material world, though he may think he is, because, after all, all his friends have bodies and the do go out to eat.  It's confusing and such thoughts are better left alone.  He hesitates.  He is stuck.  He doesn't know really what to think.  He will discuss the matter with the others.  Around and around they go and finally … finally nothing.  There is no final anything.  It's all up in the air, the ether of blithe conversation, converting, reverting, inverting, perverting the whole enterprise trying to prise these things open.  But the lever of talk is too light to open anything except more talk.  It's horrible and convivial at the same time.  Finally just the nothing.  The empty-headed can't prise open empty space.

 

In the act of writing, the solitary act, you can't hesitate.  You cannot wait to convene a meeting on the socially meaningful use of words.  You cannot give every alternative thought its due.  Respect for other ideas will have to wait.  Grab your own thought and put it down hard.  Let nuanced opposing considerations go out the door.  Choose a or b and go with it.  Don't worry what the others will think.  Don't worry that you left them out.  Do the solitary act.  Let the danger swirl.

 

Things exist in the finality of existence.  Words mean.  Thoughts come.  Relations hold.  None of this is a matter of social convention.  It just is with the brutishness of ontological fact.  The Plenum of Being comes at you. The averting eyes of conviviality close and the self alone is taken.

 

 

 

4018  Today so many are pinning their hopes on "cognitive science".  They have been hurt by the "stupid confusion" of philosophy. They want the high priests of science to lead them to an understanding that is free of anxiety.  It turns out they have been given the old nominalism is digital drag.  They have "found out" that all of philosophy has been just a misuse of language.  Surely the rigorous logic systems of neuro-anatomy will show them the way to truth. The truth is that there is no truth because all is models and metaphor and isomorphism.  Images of images on the brain.  They "see" the truth of that now in their new enlightenment.  Language systems!  Contextual pushings.  The Nomina!  Mere nomina.  A big mess. 

 

These devotees of the new science of cognition, the nova Via Moderna, never knew that that viaduct, that trivial path, has been worn thin over the centuries.  Nominalism has had it believers, some of whom were great thinkers; it never succeeded, but at least they knew transcendence when they saw it.  These guys today, intellectually standing above and outside the manifold nervous system in order to view it and make pious pronouncements, proclaim in an irritated voice there is no place above and outside the workings of the brain and its attendant ganglia.  Either they are being intellectually dishonest or they are stupid.  They are both.

 

This is all the result of thinking that the past is only the place of error and there is no point in studying it.  If the perplexities are too emotionally much for them they should leave it alone.  To announce that they finally have all the answers to the old questions is absurd.  It is embarrassing. 

 

 

 

4019  Philosophy is toxic to so many and I wonder why.  And they call anti-philosophy the true philosophy.  What is it they are so afraid of?  Why do they run to science?  Consider these philosophical things as existing things:  universals, bare particulars, classes, the many nexus that connect these philosophical things.  Consider mental acts, ie. minds as other that brains.  Consider Beauty, Truth, the Good, Number, Eternity, God and the gods.  Consider the One, simplicity, difference, the Same.  Consider the quantifiers All, Some, None, 76.  Consider facts, negative facts and potential facts. Oh my! So many things to consider.  Is it too much?  And finally consider Eros, the one who leads the soul to the Place where it may view these wondrous Things filled with the intensity of existence.  Do you think you know already why?

 

Science, these anti-philosophers moan and mean, at least does not claim to deal in existence, but settles for mere metaphor and modeling.  Science leaves the truly existing out in the unbothered unknown.  Out where Eros can sit alone with his madness.

 

I think that these anti-philosophers sense that contemplation of "metaphysical things" really does enchant and make one mad.  Eros is a devil.  And we are back with Phaedrus out on the plain under the hot sun with Socrates, who has covered over his head because he is speaking impious words against a great god.  The anti-philosophers are afraid of Erotic Love. 

 

The moralists of religion, the very ones Kirkegaard railed against as the opposite of the true Christian, have taken over the airways and now the whole country is against these sick and fascistic things of the old "Truth".  Philosophy has been told that its place is being taken by neuro-anatomy and the cultural study of language.  The great god Eros is banished.  People want comfort and release from existence.  Rules and restraints are placed on speaking – lawless eros is bound.

 

The moralizing religious needs the law, while the erotic philosopher desires the real.  The social; the solitary. 

 

 

 

4020  Old men prowl the back streets of the internet looking for the beauty of boys.  Looking for the Boy.  I am one of them.  We are an ancient group.  Socrates was one of us.  And like him we can be catty and nasty.  It is a loose snake.  It is fire in the spirit.  It is the pale night and the bright morn.  The bright, burning sword tempers in the cold water.  It is the work of the martyrs of love.  Sleep comes.  And twisted dreams.

 

In spite of the anti-sermons these old men give to themselves, they are perforce religious.  Every new vision is a vision of the One Thing.  Again and again the One appears.  This and that and that one.  Every difference is just the same, the same, the same thing. The one thing remembered from forever.  Those who would be intellectually honest must recognize that That is their god.  Is it God?  Surely it is that than which there can be no greater.  Bham!  The mind rests in the gentle agitation of the final thing.  And all of us old men are the one Lover that has always been.  We are the one watcher driving toward the One.  In us the One sees himself as in a mirror.  Lover and Beloved leaving our world in ruins.

 

 

 

4021  Should I here point out the difference between the productive and the unproductive?  Between the conscientious worker in the vineyard and the intoxicated lover?  Between the constructive and the destructive?  Or should I let it lie?  We all know the difference.  We all have our opinions about the matter.  It is Martha and Mary.

 

   Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me." But the Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her" (Luke 10:38-42).

 

It was Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. (John 11:2)

 

We can see Mary in our mind's eye.  It is the lover who creates the visible art around us.  It is the worker who builds the foundation for it to rest on.  But, then again, the lover, the artist, is nearly invisible in society.  The great commotion on the streets is that of the worker.  Priest, politician, and retail shop owner all cater to him.  The media glorify him and demand that someone tend to his needs.  The lover and the artist are left alone.  And though the lover is the artist who laid out what beauty there is in the world, that beauty is not sincerely valued and that lover is unseen.  The source of that shining irritation is nowhere.  The worker is immensely, heavily visible.   The lover is greeted with the epithet "unproductive".  Artistic creation is not thought to be true.  The lover and the artist deal in the strangely unique, that for which nothing can substitute, that with no exchange value, that outside the economic order.  The alone.

 

My concern in this writing is with just such an unproductive fellow.  The lover, the artistic and the alone.  The invisible.  From is earliest childhood he was that.  Even when he was the most showy and entertaining of all he was that.  Finally of the detritus of society.  The lumpen.  Mary washing the feet of Jesus with her hair.  These are the boys, the lovers, who grow up into the old men around Socrates walking the back streets of the internet.  Looking for the One Thing.

 

 

 

4022  Idealism is reappearing in philosophy.  Perhaps it never really left.  Perhaps its new admirers know nothing of the old horror it once breathed into those longing for the return of simplicity.  Idealism is the champion of the Absolute.  The Absolute is the Great Interdependent Whole.  The One Thing eternally self-dividing, falling into itself, creating the world.  In it, every truth is a node, a nexus, a ganglion reaching out to every other ganglion-thing to find its meaning, its life and its received existence.  A clinging coherence that is the truth of truth – the Truth.  Dark aura and proto-logical miasma.  Difference differentiating, deference deviating, the Diva dancing.  Enchanting.  And so we read that the truth of a statement depends on context.  It is true from a certain perspective.  It relies of endless definitions of endless definitions until Bham! The Whole is the only Truth, the meaning of every meaning, real existence.  A marvelous banality.  A peaceful turbidity.  Inter-subjective oneness – and love.  The simple thing, the solitary individual is totally gone.

 

Some say that that is the cure for the fascism plaguing man; others say it is the ground of fascism.  It makes man humble because he sees he is caught in the Web as are all the others.  But the humble man is the first to condemn the one who thinks otherwise – and he thinks to find someone who will eliminate him in his arrogance.  Fascism smashism, it's just bad philosophy.  It leads only to the paralysis of mind.  If you are going to have all your words well defined, all your ideas lined up with every contextual determinate, every bit of analysis completely analyzed well before you start, you will never start.  The nightmare of never being able to bring it all together before time runs out begins.  The Great Apotropion.  The Medusa.  The limit of Bliss.

 

 

 

4023  True philosophy - that is to say, philosophy in which the daimon speaks - is a sudden fearful thing to the one who is in tune with ordinary, scholarly or even pseudo-scholarly writings.  I have read overmuch of the latter, but I pray that the former speaks through me – though gently.  I think that it sometimes does.  If you find yourself suddenly confronted with a fearful thing in your philosophical readings, maybe mine, and you want to leave it and you look about for an another idea to run to then maybe that is it.  Maybe it is daimon. But maybe demon.  If you want to stay and have a look because you have a sudden liking for that then … well, then read on.  Nietzsche's Eternal Return, Kierkegaard's Absolute Absurdity, Plato's Eros, quantum theory's parallel universes, the actual Infinite, the azure sky of Gide's immoralist, existence.  All of those things are ensouled by the Daimon.  Your friends will not hesitate to say quietly and anxiously that something is wrong with you.  They will not know that it isn't you speaking.  And you too are frightened in your delight.  It may be something from the Tetragrammaton.

 

 

 

4024  Because we are sometimes afraid of the dark we want to dismiss the things that there go bump! by saying they are mere appearances of an underlying benign substance.  Because the world itself seems to have a permanent scariness to it, we want to find a more friendly substance deeper than our fright.  And so we rely on these ideas of substance and appearance.  Substance truly exists, appearance doesn't.

 

Because what we love is so often taken from us, and it seems that everything must eventually go, we look for that which continues and we want to lie down on it peacefully as on the feather bed of a lover.  

 

Because we delight in the illusions of magic and in the insuppressible phantasmagoria, because in the comings and goings of the host and the plenum of beautiful things we are aroused, and because the Sublime and its Threat is thrilling in its thin weakening and it leaves us half-awake, because of the flight, we love the mere of the appearance, because the ephemeral in the appearance is itself a constant itch.

 

Or is there no substance to life and life's world?  Is it all illusion?  Or the mere illusion of illusion?  Nothing.  Let us recount some of the things that we have grabbed at as substance.

 

 Some say that the underlying substance is Mind, or Matter, or Time. The scientifically minded today say it is space-time, or information, or Number, or the collapsing vacuum.  Some have said it is Rhythm or the pulse of love and hate.  Some that it is society or language or maybe War and the military-industrial-advertizing complex.  Somehow by grabbing onto one of these we want to be at the Center and, as in the calm eye of a hurricane, be safe. 

 

Nothing works, not even the satyric laughter of failure.  Or maybe it does work, all of it, and maybe that is God.  I write lovingly.  And I cling to the Beloved of my obsession.

 

 

 

4025  In every culture, including the Greek, the philosopher and his circle have been not so much ignored as unknown.  Socrates, Plato and Aristotle were probably recognized by only the few.  That is not an indictment of society nor is there anything malicious in it; it's just that, on those few occasions when he is seen, his thin intellectualizing seems so empty and irrelevant to the matters of real life.  Philosophy does not advance a person in his earthly dealings.  Certainly no wealth or political power is known to come from it.  It does not display that conquering worldliness so necessary for the abundant life.  It never has. It is far too other-worldly in its sublime destructiveness.  It is however, now as then, held in awe for its mysteriousness.  Some of the young have hoped to find something in that.  They are then ignored.  Or should I say?  Sacrificed.

 

Philosophy has often tried to escape its feel of being close to religion.  It has wanted to be "scientific".  Science, though, is another band of high priests.  And they don't want the competition.  Recently some philosophers have tried their hand at being literary artists.  I am tempted by that.  It doesn't work.  In the end philosophy, science, art and religion are all the same.  To the "cognitive scientists", so welcomed as emissaries from the future into our schools, part cult part sophistry, I will say that those things all come from the same part of the neural cortex (or is it the reptilian depths?).  Experiment and sacrificial killing are close at hand.  Soon the financiers and those who write the software that guides the building of our financial house of cards are bound to appear among us, the rejected.  Still though, we do maintain our mysteriousness.   

 

Are the fumes of mystery enough to propel us on to a better world?  It has got us this far and that ain't beans.

 

 

 

4026  The One and the many, Part and Whole, simple and complex.  These are the dialectical pairs that guide philosophy.  Sameness and difference, identity and otherness, internal and external, thing and nexus, proposition and fact, the list goes on and on.  The movement in the course of analysis careens into ungraspable concept.  Beauty and the Sublime, sense and the absurd, beast and angel.  Incarnate gods, disincarnate bodies, flash and flesh, mystical intoxication in toxic glosses, theses indefensible, reprehensible, bad.  Endless ontologies spinning out of invisible minds.  E-journals, urinals, dejection, it comes to nothing.  Or rather, the final answer is the sublime boredom of the sublimely erotic.  The noumena.  The Nod.  The silent command to kill.  Thought is self-sacrifice.  To God.  Bham!  That's it.  Your unspeaking speaks.

In the fact F(a) there are the things F and a and the nexus.  Of course they aren't "in" the fact, but there is no other way to express this inexpressible thought.   Between the fact and its constituents there is no nexus.  No "in".  No "constituent of".  Nothing.  Or maybe there is.  The thought is almost unthinkable.  Or it is so.  In spite of my thinking it right well.  And so it is with all the dialectical pairs.  The analysis collapses.  And all the ways that have been invented to not even think about it have led right back to it.  Lay your head on the block and wait.  He is coming.

 

 

 

4027  Use versus style.  To use a thing is other than placing it before you that you might gaze on its form.  Wittgenstein said that a philosopher stares at his tools.  Perhaps he is looking for beauty.  Beauty is other than use.  Even when we stop to appreciate the clean efficiency with which something is used, we step back from use.  And when we give our attention to the pleasurable feeling of work in the using of the thing, we make the division. Use and contemplation are other.  Still, I anticipate a mystical thrill upon feeling, for an instant, that they had become one.  And so it is with the construction of a philosophical sentence.

 

I have written many, many sentences combining into paragraphs into numbered sections, all expressing my idea.  The meaning of the words is there.  And then the meaning disappears and the style of the writing appears.  The rhythm, the alliteration, the long and the short, the gradual climb of the phrasing.  The cadence, the pause, the ornate and the plain, the chaotic and the easy.  You will like it or you won't.  And the meaning will be full or not.  My writing divides against itself.  And yet … maybe that instant of union does come.  Then what?

 

 

 

4028  The young thinkers of today like to tell you that they are "spiritual" but not religious.  That means that their explanations of love are dry intellectualizing.  Long-winded, Latinate nonsense.  Psycho-babble.  German idealism often in Buddhist drag.  Disheveled Gallic rationalism at late night cafes.  Nervous dudes who dismiss Platonic love as what they reluctantly ended up having with their rather unresponsive, but intelligent, girlfriend. 

 

That has nothing at all to do with Platonic Love as described in Plato.  Or rather, it is the impious, non-love described in the first two speeches of the Phaedrus.  In Plato, the lover, the man, has a very passionate, mad, almost killing love for the beloved, the boy.  Sensual beyond help, sexual in the extreme, forcing a world-leaving flight into the Forms.  It is a mighty struggle at best, bloody sacrifice at its blinding worst.  The Platonic lover suffers μηνιν, madness.  But of course we are forbidden to speak of it.

 

 

 

 

4029  An acquaintance of mine today expressed bewilderment about just why I travel to the places I do, such uncomfortably poor places.  I don't do it that I might help where I can, because I can do pathetically little, if anything at all.  I don't do it because I see any beauty in the culture; such folksy things don't interest me.  I don't do it for the scenery; I seldom leave the congested city.  I think rather it is because of something Kafka wrote about.  The indestructible mind in man.  I stand in awe of that.

 

In time, I have learned in life that man is much more intelligent than I had thought.  Much more.  But he is also much closer to collapse than I had fearfully dreamed.  Emotional, physical, financial, cultural destruction.  Everything that moves about him is so close to coming undone.  And then it does, and he simply goes on.  I travel to watch and feel the mighty whirlwind that forces man to stand hard.  That hardness is impressive.  He endures.  And I gather strength for myself.  I have seen terrible things written across the human face and I have watched him just go on.  He finds a way through.  He is much more capable than I had thought possible.  A greater Intelligence is in him than the schools know of.  I stand in awe of that.  We can see it everywhere man is if we but let ourselves see such a terrible thing.  Perhaps in America we have not let ourselves see what others see plainly, and that's why I travel.

 

 

 

4030  Beauty is only skin deep.  It is a superficial thing.  It is the glistening surface.  Go beneath that Light and the horrors of the medusa of nature ooze.  The philosophical question is:  Can we ever know Beauty pure without the underthing?  My whole philosophy is that Yes, we can.  These are the separate Platonic Forms.  Or do you balk at the very idea?  If so, stop reading.  Or perhaps you may be curious about my attempts at ontological argument.  Or where the idea may lead or seduce me.  What is your secret desire?

 

 

 

4031  We have been overwhelmed by the movement philosophies flowing relentlessly from the Sublime, the immanent transcending into itself, the endless difference differentiating.  Process!  The evolving, unfolding, self-canceling Abyss.  And we, in that massive verbiage, have lost the One Thing.  We, who have been so involved into change, cannot now find the unchanging.  The strange attractor within the chaos, the gaud that some have offered as consolation and a weak explanation of what we only imagined was there, is so unattractive.  The Forms had beauty and their movement was the smooth flow of the swelling spring.  The thick stasis of the erotic.  Gentle oblivion, the simple conclusion of intelligence.  The beloved we once saw clearly has disappeared in the overwhelming undergrowth.  Gnarl.

 

Think of the Tiger.  The Form looms in your mind. You know and you feel the thing.  It is That.  Unless you are waylaid by a modern undergraduate who wants to explain to you that the word "tiger" has many, many social, linguistic, biological, geographically diverse meanings and your feeling and "knowing" of it, the tiger, is mere delusion.  The Tiger doesn't exist.  Complications swarm about – differences deferring into throttled pleasure of mangled innocence – or whatever.  He wants you to feel his sublime.  He is the Tiger of Thought.  And, if he is cute, I let him go on in his pretending.

 

 

 

4032  Concerning the Mundus Imaginalis of Corbin and the much-maligned dualism Des Cartes, I discern a certain languid creature lying disconcertedly near.  I will avert my gaze long enough to write.  There are abstract thoughts, so purely mathematical, so theoretical, so hard to see.  There are sensa, strong, weak, liquid, light.  This is the famous dualism of Renè, the splitter.  How are we ever going to be whole after his Cut? 

Aquinas wrote concerning angels:  If angels had no knowledge of individual things they could exercise no providential government over events in this world, since these always imply individuals at work … as a man knows all classes of things by faculties that differ from each other – knowing by his intellect, universals and things free from matter, and by sensation the particular and the corporeal – so an angel knows both kinds of beings by one and the same intellectual power.  For such is the order of the universe, that the nobler a being is the more unified and at the same time, the more wide-ranging is its power … since then the angelic nature is superior to ours, it is unreasonable to deny that what man can know by one of his various faculties, an angel can know by a single and intellectual cognitive faculty.

The angel has a faculty that is neither just sensory nor just abstract.  It is both as one. The modern anti-dualist, the anti-Cartesian, also tries to overcome the division in a single something.  His good intentions fail.  Unfortunately for us all, he tries to bring the abstract, immaterial intellect down to the sensory finite brain, thinking he has repaired the tear.  But he only loses the universal and we are left dazed in fleeting, sparking sensa.  Unknowingly, he tried to make us angels again, the sensory and the universal faculty as one.  Sitting with him, we see the bleak and the empty.  So it is time to bring in the angels again!

We have already done this.  My friend who loves theoretical physics says he can never understand anything in the theory until he has a sort of vision in his imagination.  He "sees" something – sort of sensation, sort of abstraction, neither, both.  He is too timid, however, to believe in his vision.  He tries to bring it down to something in the brain and the conversation ends badly. Angels were there for an instant. He understood something profound.  Or there is no understanding.

Angelology is not new, except to the modern mind.  Goethe wrote: The man who cannot draw on three thousand years is living from hand to mouth. 

The ancient Youth lies there languidly and close.

 

 

4033  If you're an artist, a thinker, a lover it's hard to think of anything that hasn't already been done ad nauseam.  The past weighs on us.  That we have so much knowledge of it electrifies our entanglement with what has been.  That we end up with no being to claim as our own is depression.  It's all already there.  Pushing us back against the wall.  And then Microsoft comes along and gives us applications where we can express our infinite possibilities.  Don't they know that there is nothing left to be express?  One more time, one more bland repetition, is useless.  What to do?

 

The temptation to just forget the past, to not look, to become ignoramuses calls.  Or to hope that as we start to engage with the past that we can suddenly veer off into something else.  And so we careen through the ditches of left ideas.  We make faces at love.  We think the unthinkable.  All of which, it turns out, has been done before.  And we soon see that the past is a vast wreckage.  Like Milton's Satan we lie in ruin without having gained the Heights.  Now what?

 

Here is what you should not do.  Don't curl up into a ball and try to act humble.  Do not repeat the mantra that all we know are our own personal thoughts and others have a right to theirs.  Don't become a solipsist.  There is no relief there.  Your only hope is to grab the past, that great monster, and work it one more time.  Try once again to scale the walls of heaven.  Get what you want.  What you really want.  Be glorious in spite of it all.  Or what?

 

 

 

4034  Acharya Nagarjuna was a Buddhist philosopher from the 2nd or 3rd century AD.  A great, or the greatest, most famous Buddhist philosopher.  In Kathmandu you see Nagaruna Motorcycle Repair, Nagarjuna Beauty Parlors, Nagarjuna Telecommunications.  His name is everywhere.  I love this guy.  He is an absolute, total Nihilist.  An intelligent Nihilist.  An extreme, proof-giving Nihilist.  He is my antipode.  Among scholars today there is disagreement about what he really taught.  Here is a little history: Buddhism was discovered by the Europeans somewhere around the beginning of the 19th century. They were positively enchanted by it. They saw the Emptiness, the Sunyata, as delightful.  Then, after about 50 years, they totally changed their minds when they came to see that the emptiness, the zero, was in fact total non-existence.  Bham! Period! Nothing.  The charm vanished. Why would anyone want simply to not exist?  Then 50 years later revisionism came and we were told that the Buddhists weren't absolute nihilists, but worshipers of the One, the Absolute, the Great Inter-connectedness.  We were told that a thing only became nothing when it was torn away from the Whole.  Dependent arising was the new mantra.  Everything depended on everything else and everything lived when immersed in the Great Dependency.  Simple independence was an illusion.  Now Buddhism is loved again.  But this revisionism isn't the teaching of Nagarjuna at all.  He really was a total Nihilist.  There is no dependent arising.  No nothing at all. And he proves it with magnificent, hard proofs.  To be an absolute nihilist is mad.  Nagarjuna was mad.  All good philosophy is madness.  We are battered about by the Absurd.

 

 

 

4035  It seems to me that the aweful truth of Godel's discovery hasn't yet entered the mind of humanity.  We still like to believe that Being is one thing and that it coheres minutely.  That all of its infinite parts flow from one Principle.  That if we beheld the First Form that we could see in that all that ever could be.  That mathematics, the form of existence, is one thing counter-rolling. 

 

We want to believe that there are Arms big enough to encompass all things.  That from here we can go to any there.  That one supernatural vision could see it all together. 

 

But Godel has proved that there are parts of mathematics that cannot be reached from any given set of first principles. That there are places that cannot be reached from where you are now.  That there are times that are unconnected in infinite time to this time.  That without a jump through oblivion the Other cannot be reached.

 

Thus what we need to do is practice that Jump.  But can we?  Can we maneuver the white blank of nothingness between, in a between that isn't there?  Can I speak of it without the totally incoherent entering?  Sure, I go to sleep and I wake up and who knows in what part of Being I was before that ruinous dream.  Or what strange place I took you through before you arrived here at this end.

 

 

 

4036  Well Yes, angels do exist and they are what they have always been – a bridge between Transcendence and the earth.  Between the pure abstraction and the sensory particular.  Between the separate Form and the piece of matter right here.  Even the boy counting between Number and the numbered.  Of course, if you are a nominalist and you do not believe in universals, Numbers, Forms, faint abstractions, or any kind of transcendence from the Plethora you will disagree.  The ontological realist though, has a problem.  One that's even greater than the sticky presence of the nominalist.

 

So there you are lying on your bed half asleep.  That difficult book you were reading is playing in your dreams.  Topological fields appear and vanish into infinity.  Somehow you begin to understand through the difficulty.  The angel from nowhere and never passed through your mind.  From Nakojaabad.  His quivers shook.  His eyes flashed and that was it.  The abstraction was yours.  But how to speak it?

 

 

 

4037  In the 1970s a revolution took place in philosophy.  A movement toward the very boring.  It probably happened because the young started to feel very anxious about the great mountain of philosophical thought that the intellectual past had piled up before their nervous eyes.  Not only the long centuries, but even the recent past, was oppressive.  And that it might leave them no room at all to be something special was deadening.  Therefore, unable to handle it any more they turned to the only thing they really understood – chemicals.  From now on all philosophical problems would be solved by means of analyzing the chemical structure of the brain and its trailings under the flesh.  Let me give you some examples of how it works and you can see how very boring it is – unless you're really into molecular biology.

 

Take a typical philosophical question:  1. How do I ontologically analyze the fact that the sky is blue?  2. That this art is beautiful?  3. That I perceive my friend coming toward me?  4. That in time things appear and disappear?  5. That two plus two is four.  6. That two round patches are the same.  7. That they are different?  Typical questions that have bothered philosophers for a very long time.  The new post-revolution answer is easy.

 

The final analysis is this:

 

  1. This is accounted for by the brain state "the-sky-is-blue".
  2.  This is accounted for by the brain state "this-art-is-beautiful".
  3.  This is accounted for by the brain state "perceiving-my-friend-coming-toward-me".
  4.   This is accounted for by the brain state "things-appearing-and-disappearing-in-time".
  5. This is accounted for by the brain state "two-plus-two-is-four".
  6. This is accounted for by the brain state "two-round-patches-appearing-the-same".
  7. This is accounted for by the brain state "two-round-patches-appearing-different".
  8. Voilà!  All philosophical problems are solved. 

 

 

The answers, in fact, to all our questions can be answered with brain scans.  Do you love me?  Let me (or us) scan your brain.  Do you know how to differentiate this equation in calculus?  Let me (or us) scan your brain.  Do you know how long the Thirty Tears War lasted?   Let me (or us) scan your brain.  Do you want to vote Republican or Democrat?  Let me (or us) scan your brain.  Are you hungry?  Let me (or us) scan your brain.  Did you kill your neighbor?  Let me (or us) scan your brain.  Are you a good worker?  Let me (or us) scan your brain.  And on and on.  Also if you need love or sex or any kind of pleasure we can scan your brain and induce the proper brain state.  And on and on and on.

 

Yes, the "cognitive analysis" world of the brain state (the-world-of-the-brain-state) is omnipotent, omniscient and excruciatingly BORING!  (unless you're a molecular engineer - or a wanna-be.)  But at least you don't have to feel threatened about having to learn all about our vast intellectual past.  And so now, the poorest of the poor, we live hand to mouth in the neural firings.

 

 

 

4038  The difference that lies between science and literature rages.  Science is so very high, abstract intellectual.  Literature is of the flesh.  Philosophy is the rage that lies there so threateningly.  The mind is being torn apart.  Philosophy is that angelic world that is at once pure Form and pure matter.  It is the dream of the Real.  It is the nodding command.  It is on the edge of life and death.  It is the frightening pair of wings overhead.  Hard covering, lifting claws.  Zeus with Ganymede.  The jolt that shatters sleep.  Beauty ravished.  Flesh taken by the lightening flash. 

 

Kant insisted on the boundary of the Critique that would keep the philosopher from probing into the noumena, the thing-in-itself, the Sublime.  His warning has always gone unheeded.  Even he couldn't keep his hands off it.  The beauty has had his shirt torn off by endless lovers.  Now we are almost numb from its too much.  This is not mere fantasy, mere playful illusion; this is the really real.  The gods are overwhelmingly here.  They walk the malls.  They ride in careening cars.  They lounge on your couch.  Your livelihood is threatened. Useless glittering eyes.  Then they vanish.  And despair is close.

 

 

 

4039  Kant insisted that the distinction between the noumenon and phenomena be maintained.  One, honoring the critique, can never characterize the noumenon as having such and such properties.  It is just That.  Is that so different from the bare particular that I speak of?  In spite of a great uproar I think I hear coming from scholars, I will assume they are the same thing.  Consider, momentarily contemplate, a bare particular.  The just that of what is before you.  If you are like most, you will insist that there is nothing there to contemplate.  Or if it is somehow there, it is not phenomenally presented and philosophical analysis is phenomenological; so why bother.   Yes yes yes, so far we are right with Kant.  I insist that I do "see" something there.  That is my philosophy.  That is the destruction, maybe the deconstruction, leading to the Sublime, the Jouissance, I crave in the just that of Him.  I see in the oblivion of philosophical orgasm.  Or have I crossed the line by saying that?  Misprision is the heart of all philosophical understanding.

 

 

 

4040  Every satirist I have ever heard or read has been a great upholder of the common wisdom of public opinion.  A parodist on the other hand is someone who takes an idea to its very strange extreme, and he is thus far from the love of the madding crowd, the very thing the satirist craves.  Public opinion is the Great God of our time, and it is the Infallible Judge.  Its sacred writ and righteous rite is the media.  It is loved and respected. The satirist is the darling of the masses.  The parodist is, however, thought to be just sick in his self-destruction.  He is, in fact, beyond the pale.  Satire leaves him alone.  Eyes avert.  He doesn't exist.

 

 

 

4041  The love and the beloved I describe here are not voluminously, engrossingly, encirclingly sensual - wet, of course not.  They are the very chaste.  The dry, thin air.  This is the love of a boy, not of a woman.  This is thus an asceticism.  Hardly anything at all.  An emptying.  And the tightness of the logical nexus.  Pink and white dawn and down.  Into the seeing of seeing.  In extremis. 

 

The dialectic advances precipitously.  The Infinite discharges.  His blinding hair falls gently over one eye.  The continuum revolves.  A touch pricks up.  The splendors of night disappear into oblivion.  Soon the day will begin.

 

The dead philosophy returns into the first place and I am that. 

 

 

 

4042  Plotinus tells us that the One is beyond Being.  Or in modern ontology-speak, we could say that the simplicity (the uncompoundedness) of a simple thing is not an existent added to that thing to make it simple.  Nor is existence a thing added to it.  Nor non-existence added to simplicity.  Nor is difference a thing added to make simplicity and existence be different.  The One, that is to say, simplicity and existence and difference are not things that are there.  Still, we know exactly what simplicity and existence and difference are.  These things that are not there are somehow there.  Let us say that they are all beyond Being just as is the One of Plotinus.

 

The One is beyond Being.  A magnificent, perfect philosophical statement.  And eminently meaningless.  But no more than a wispy lock of hair curling around your fingers.  Or your sitting and staring at his still form in the dark.

 

 

 

4043  Nietzsche is the philosopher that has taught us about resentment.  He gave his highest praise to Jesus as the man the most free from the corruption that it brings.  And he condemned Christianity as the institution the least free of it, the long scourge of Western history.  The man full of resentment is the one filled with silent anger at what life has done to him.  Who feels the insult of time, that it has come and taken away all possibility.  Who feels injury at his low status.  Who ever remembers the sting of insult.  He is a bitter man and he relies on God or the gods to get revenge.  He wants to get even.  Nietzsche calls it also the slave-mentality.

 

Jesus, the thinks, is the one who is so over-filled with love that no grudge, no rancor, no ill-will of any kind is ever held against even his most powerful of enemies.  He is, he also sometimes thinks, ever an immature adolescent in the beauty of his feelings.  He died so young, but he at least showed us how to die supremely affirming all of life.

 

Nietzsche thought that it was mainly St. Paul who introduced all of those other-worldly ideas of theology into scene and concocted Christianity, a metaphysical, cosmological monstrosity.  He thought that Jesus, who wanted to teach us the resentment-free eternity of the here and now, would have been greatly saddened at the perversion of his way.

 

It seems to me that this Jesus is the glorious young man that Nietzsche wanted to be, that he saw as his own real nature.  Nietzsche was a rather sickly, probably effeminate, boy and older man, over-sensitive to classical beauty and the muffled ridicule coming from others.  He suffered physically and socially because of that.  He was not read.  Those he would have loved pushed him away.  But he always wanted to maintain an idea of the majesty of man.  He found only the little man filled with contempt.  He was crucified along with his friend Jesus by the rabble. 

 

 

 

4044  Pop art can be seen as either comic or ironic.  In our culture it is probably smart to see it as comic if you want to join the conversation.  In the comic attitude, one knocks down the high-flying.  It shows that the valued things of society are to be ridiculed.  It destroys the pretentious and the politically established.  It is the way down.  Pop art can be seen as cutting up the supposedly perfectly-formed.  It is decadence thrown around.  It is an overcoming of oppressive things.  The high are brought low.  Bourgeois values are scrapped. 

 

The dialectically impish way of seeing it, the way I maliciously prefer, is the ironic, a raising up of the ordinary to the stylized, metaphysical heights.  It is the way of the angels.  The images of pop art look so very much like medieval icons.  They are flat and cut.  Words are laid out in strips, much as they were put on ribbons coming out of the mouths of the saints.  They have unreal perfection.  They are displays of passion and mutilated limb.  They are over-colorful.  And everything is writ large making us still.  The low is nervously grabbed and laid up arrested and high.

 

Now for mathematics and its limits in all that.  If mathematics is the totally perspicuous, the ever translucent, the thoughts of disembodied angels, so Cartesian, then, yes, pop art does share in that other-worldliness – in its ironic form.  As comedy, let us just say that mathematics itself is brought low, a childish mistake, when we realize that calculus, the tool of high theory, is built on a hidden act of dividing by zero.  We have been deceived.  As the dy in the derivative dx/dy, gets smaller and smaller until it reaches the infinitesimal, it is separated from zero by … do you believe in the infinitely small or is that the same as zero?  Have we been hood-wicked by the calculus as Bishop Berkeley said (mere traces of departed wraiths), or have we learned to handle the Infinite.  Is God in our calculating fingers?  Is that comic or ironic?  Are we on the way of the angels or of Des Carte's evil demon?  Pop art is pure mathematics.  So?

 

 

 

4045  The Nexus carries one thing across to another.  Sort of.  The nexus does what the nexus does and to describe it in other terms is impossible.  It cannot be explained or explicated in other terms.  The various nexus abound: exemplification, intentionality, extensionality, also inference, deference, reference, even transference, why not implication, application, complication, duplication, copulation, and that horribly maddening causality.  Surely there are more.  They proliferate.  And like the phantasmagoria of Aladdin's lamp they rise up out of the self-working Ouroboros, Being Itself.

 

I think of the blue sky and my thought is OF that.  That little word "of" contains a whole philosophy.  I, a thought, am carried across to that thing by the nexus that that little word points to.  "Pointing to".  The nexus is everywhere.  They cannot be explained away.  They just are.  Bham! Philosophy is finished.

 

 

 

4046  The mind so just with itself in unextendedness touches the laid out extended boy.  An act of love.  The mind so only with itself takes him in in one fell swoop.  The thing is swallowed. The One is with the world.  The beloved never had a chance. 

 

The touch of mind, the magical nexus, the reaching out to the other.  The going across, the out there of the in here.  There's nothing like it.  The Unique.  The consuming god.  The Over-god.  The Night of Power.

 

 

 

4047  The hardest part of ontology is thinking about the Nexus.  It is so very almost not there.  It is the act of thinking about the thinking about.  It is about the about.  The mind unites with the thing thought and the uniting is thought.  An impossible thought of thought, but so obvious.  Greatly denied.

 

He is there and my mind is all around him.  I am him.  My thought has eaten him.  The unity is complete.  He never knew.  Sufi destruction.

 

His nexus jambs inside me.  Far inside space.  Ghostly thoughts.  A smooth shudder.  The eye shuts.  Tight and bright.  And the one thing.  The hardest thing.  The Thing of things.  Tangled hair.  Right there.

 

 

 

4048  The nexus, the beloved, the eating mind are all so easily overlooked.  The stumbling block at night.  The thought mangler.  The disorderer of good society.  Heads rolling down the dusty lane.

 

The mind of the mind.  Intention intending.  Intense.  The self of the self.  The diaphanous night.  The bright unseen.  Seeing seen disappearing without a fight out of sight.  Bite the bight.  His grasp is right.  The fan dies down, the breeze comes up outside.

 

 

 

4049  In this philosophy of realism the differences we see are real.  Things really are different from each other and difference itself is really there.  Things do not fall back into that so-fashionable unity. Young intellectuals love to think they have a special vision of things beyond the world of appearances.  They think they see the illusion of difference.  They hold tight to the closeness of friends in a harmonious spirit world.  The pain of extendedness is overcome in their dreams.  Everything falls inward to the forgotten heaven.  They hope beyond hope and write long "meaningful" essays on the matter.  But it isn't to be. They will end up as sacrificial victims.

 

 

 

4050  When Satan fell from heaven he fell into cutting Cartesian extendedness.  Place divided from place.  Place divided from itself.  This becoming that, no place.  No first, no second, no order to causality.  No derivative.  No smooth line.  The pure quantum leap.  Uncertainty.  The Self was gone.  Shattering Difference reigned.

 

Without unity the mind is insane.  Without unity the self is many.  Without unity nausea.  Headache and the cold.  No one calls.  No one notices that your beauty is gone.  No one cares to notice.  In the extendedness, they are not present.  Everything is far away.  Return to unity is hopeless.

 

Yes, Unity does exist; it is filled full with existence, just as much as Disunity also exists and is likewise, painfully, filled with existence.  They are separate.  The separation exists.  It is all so very real.

 

Being is full of slashings.  Through the balm of thought oozes the pus of existence.  That we exist is the gag of mysticism.  Your fall into the non-existence of extendedness is full of the real.  The mouth of God is all over you.  There will never be a place way from that dark, head-banging fragrance.

 

 

 

4050  A strong philosophy for the strong philosophy is one that does not lead him into the sweet crying of loss.  The temptation we all face is to learn to love the catastrophe of our life.  We learn to sing sad songs and to wallow in their repulsive addiction. You take not having and hopelessness as beloved.  Kierkegaard said that despair is to be in love with that which you hate.  We fairly bemoan our not knowing, our total inability to ever know, our cornered cage.  A strong philosophy is not afraid to directly see what is.  It rests in having touched the final thing of existence.  It has possessed the really real, the true and the beautiful Beauty itself.  It has looked at Being straight on and it has let itself be that.  It has not been concerned that others has called it mad.

 

 

 

 

4051  Most young writers of today are true to the twentieth century belief that only the "mature", nay the old, really understand the truth of things.  Even at seventeen, he who would write feels he must have the wisdom of age.  That he must be able to write the horrible truth about the final emptiness of life.  That he must give up all romantic illusion.  These "young" minds, prematurely old, congratulate each other on being old bards, able to see the icy frost all about.  And, of course, to have the compassion of age toward those who still cannot "see". 

 

It's time for that old poet to die.  The twentieth century is gone.

 

 

 

4052 There are two beliefs, out and about, about water and electricity today.  The first is that behind the appearances of these mighty appearances there is a still obscure essence lurking in the geometry of matter.  The other is that they are nothing but the shimmering "sum" of our human experiences about "them".  Whichever is the case, it turns out that water is not water and electricity is not electricity.  So let me offer a different belief, one in which water really is water and electricity is electricity.

 

Let us say that the Form of Water and Electricity do exist and that these two Forms are exemplified by innumerable particulars throughout Being.  Then when we come upon one of these particulars we can say, Yes, this is water, Yes, this is electricity. A timeless, placeless Thing has appeared just now and right here.  Or is that just too much to imagine?

 

 

 

4054  I have said that the real philosopher, the philosopher of the Real, sees the final things.  That he sees Truth and Being.  That the Beauty of That overwhelms him.  I have also said that analysis always and inevitably finally crashes. In the presence of the things of the End the whirlwind comes.  When the Beloved enters clamor and fire bring down the house.  When you begin to speak in order to let the great explanation begin you must not hesitate, you must not doubt, you must not let guilt overcome you.  In the midst of intellectual destruction you will finally speak the pure and smooth thing. 

 

Things fall apart; the center will not hold.  You are driven into the wilderness.  But it is there, all alone, that you see the Friend has been with you all along.  Driven out because of your egotistical ways, you find that the self of the self was always yours.  As the inevitable scapegoat, you found the way back to the beginning.  It is unclear whether or not anyone else has followed.  You never lost your nerve.  Oblivion.

 

 

 

4055  The continuum is alluring.  As boundaries fall away as the cut is healed as one thing melts into another and the dizzying prospect of union comes floating through the body, a sigh and a great peace.  Differences give way and surfaces break and light softly settles in and around down to the floor.  The sunshine is the darkness in the moon is the exploding galaxies is the light in the corner.  Tension relaxes into numb stillness.  And Squalor moves in. 

 

The allure of the continuum without the discontinuous is disaster.  Form gives way to liquid fat rolling off the side of the bed.  Order becomes disorder becomes confusion becomes panic.  In the continuum everything gives way to everything and, as in a bad dream, abrupt changes reveal total loss of control to the secret.  Waste. 

 

 

 

4056  The death of God vs. the philosophy of realism.  If there is no God, there in no existence.  Then nothing is real.  Nothing is true.  Nothing is itself.  God was defined by metaphysics as Being, Truth, The One, The Self-existing, Entity.  Therefore … If there is no God, there in no existence.  Then nothing is real.  Nothing is true.  Nothing is itself.  No thing is.  The repeating mantra repeats down through the ages.  Or is that just the much maligned ontological argument?

 

In today's resurgent philosophical Idealism, in its Swampy Absolute where all is lost in the great inter-connecting morass, entangled thought presents us with Baroque squalor invading life making it deliquesce across the floor out the door and analysis reached the septic depths.

 

The Tradition of thought has given us a few simple, powerful words. Being, existence, the same, self, truth, beauty, the one, the Good, thought.  I use the words without qualification.  They speak for themselves.  The modern philosopher of the Great Inter-Connectedness of all things, says whoa … things are not that simple.  We must consider many, many things for a long time with great subtlety and hesitation.  By themselves those words are empty, nihil.  We must fill them up with human history, long human analysis, fine human feeling.  They are too weak to stand on their own.  We humans are the strength.  But I politely demur.  I use the simple words and I tremble before their Power.  When the words no longer life but must be artificially resuscitated if at all, then God is dead.

 

 

 

4057  What did Nietzsche mean by the death of God?  For that matter, what did Nietzsche mean by anything?  Who knows? the mystery gets bigger and bigger. Here is an interpretation I like: God was the principle of all things Majestic.  His contemporaries had lost interest in such a Grand Thing.  They were German shopkeepers, small town householders, over-worked professors, pietistic preachers, rented-room atheists, bourgeois swindlers, and on and on …. not one majestic, grand individual in the lot.  No Ceasar, no Gingas Khan, no Michelangelo.  In other words, they are just like the dazzled lot of the modern consumer society.  People today just want to get rid of tension and softly complain.  No one believes in grand ideas and we roll our eyes at someone who does.  A comfortable moderate-sized apartment or house is enough and a quiet street to walk on.  And, of course, someone who doesn't complain to sleep with.  Please, no Majesty.  God is not something we want to think about just now.  And probably not tomorrow.

 

Here's another interpretation: God is just too demanding.  Along with David in the Psalms we can say – Oh Lord, depart from me that I might know gladness before I die and am no more.  Take the story of Jonah, (Jesus said the only sign given would be the sign of Jonah).  God asked Jonah to go and preach to Nineveh to stop their wickedness or be destroyed.  Jonah refused because he said that if he did the people would repent and no destruction would come and then he (Jonah) would look like a fool.  So he took off to get away from God so he could live his life peaceably.  God is life-destroying, if life is just getting along.  Even God knows that and he is willing to just die and leave man in peace.  We can somehow learn to live without someone always telling us what to do.  We can be grown-ups – Mature!

 

 

 

4058  Thomas Mann in Death in Venice and Andre Gide in The Immoralist both take us into abyss of Entropy.  That is to say, they take us on a tour of time's destruction.  Shakespeare had taken that tour in his day.  We see beauty destroyed.  And we are given to somehow know that that destruction is a piece that lies deep within the very being of Beauty itself.  Love, beauty and corruption dance a mad dance.  Our impish God grins.

 

And now there is Nietzsche's Eternal Return, in which nothing is lost, everything is again at hand.  A horrible and a delightful idea.  A giddy idea itself on the edge. A idea left untaught in the classroom.  Here we are at the heart (?) of Nietzsche's philosophy.  Here is where the Will to Power overcomes the flaccid nihil.  And though it is too much, it will not go away.

 

 

 

4059  The essence of art is form, the essence of form is repetition, the essence of repetition is the blank.  The white space.  The lapse.  He slips into sleep.  His lips peel back time.  Breath fuses with silent thought.  And the night hears of what never was.  Everything is again.

 

In the unspeakable return of the dead.  In ghostly hands writing.  In the eyes' absence.  He shifts his seat to there and his feet.  And the again again.

 

Dear reader, you have known it all already and again you are yourself.  The pain, the pleasure, the endlessness of your vision rising.  That thing there again wants you.  What to do?

 

 

 

4060  Words are magic.  I say the word and the thing itself is present.  Not that the thing is the word, but the thing and the word are intimate.  Or so the lover when he utters the name of the things of the beloved thinks.  He is, of course, right.  We do not dare to show disbelief toward love.  We do not dare offend him.  Socrates showed us as much.  Let those who scoff find their own peace.  Anteros will have his way with them.  As for me I fear such a thing.

 

I am a mere singer of love's qazals.  I am a mere irrationalist.  I walk lonely streets of desire.  I do as I will and I say the obvious truth of love.  I know its reality and its unreality.  Everything is beyond the beyond.  If I travel there, what is that to you?

 

Thoughts are magic.  I think the thought and the object itself is present.  Not that the thing is the thought, but the thing and the thought are intimate.  Or so the lover when he thinks the face and the form of the beloved says.  He is, of course, right.  We do not dare to show disbelief toward love.  We do not dare offend him.  Socrates showed us as much.  Let those who scoff find their own peace.  Anteros will have his way with them.  As for me I fear such a thing.

 

I am a mere dreamer of love's dream.  I think the thought and the words utter themselves through me.  I am their ratio.  I desire the lonely walk.  I will the obvious truth and its daring beyond the real.  Beyond everything there is you, my travelling, listing friend.  The words come from nowhere, thoughts arise from nowhere, the object is against me.  I fear the scoff of the Nowhere at all.  I will not offend it.  Nor fend off its irrational demands.  I will believe the obvious rhyme.

 

 

 

4061  Today's world is characterized by gigantic systems. Orders upon orders of organization.  We are tyrannized.  The young student comes undone.  I lay out a simple presence.  I write in plain English.  A flash of syntax and a quick end.  I let in a gentle intellectual breeze.  His fragrance wafts and in its wake I am buoyed up.  With my thoughts I lie awake.  I take what I want.

 

The Titan Org is not here.  The System is only the stem of love's tyranny.  He falls into place. And comes undone.  I know his lash will eventually relax.

 

 

 

4062  Render unto Caesar that things that are Caesar's and unto God the things that are God's.  In my Platonism those two realms are separate.  With the advent of the American revolution, the Kingdom of God was suppose to come down to earth in the form of ordinary individuals coming together in convention deciding their own fate.  The division between earth and heaven was to be healed over.  Neither Caesar nor God.  It didn't happen as far as I live.  I take the world still to be Caesar's and I look elsewhere for the God I want.  I am content to let the two realms remain apart.   Give Caesar his due.

 

 

 

4063  Here, per impossible, is a writing up of the philosophy of Absolute Materialism.  It will of necessity be a parody.

 

If I say that I see a penny lying on the floor and I try to give an ontological analysis of that perception, I might say that the particular that I am exemplifies a thought and the property of perceiving and that there are particulars exemplifying penniness and floorness and the relation between them (the fact) and a nexus of intentionality between the thought and that fact.  Such a description is definitely not absolute materialism.

 

Or I could say that the words "thought", "perception", "penniness", "floorness", "relation", "particular", "property", "intentionality" etc. are abbreviations for certain brain states.  Therefore, the entire statement –"I see a penny lying on the floor" is also an abbreviation for a brain state.  In fact all names and all statements, all words and all utterances are abbreviation-names for certain brain states.  Everything we see and think and say is just a brain state.  We are only brain states.  The world as we know it is a brain state.  All thoughts and objects of thought are brain states looping with other brain states.  Brain states are all there is.  Even brain states are just brain states.  And if you crack your head with an axe, it will all brainstatedly spill out all over the brain state floor, so messy.  The world is just that.  Absolute materialism is not only silly, it is rather sickening.

 

 

 

4064  Why are bad things happening to us as a people, as a nation, as a world?  If you are a pious, enlightened child of the Enlightenment and you worship the Trinity of Reason, Convention and Respect then you say that we have not come together and reasonably reasoned respectful always of each other.  If you are a somewhat enlightened child of a the always reasonable God of the modern church, then you say that even though God the Caring Father has spoken to you very necessary and reasonable rules for life, you have not listened and obeyed.  In both cases, it is man's fault and man's fault alone that has caused man to suffer.  And now we are like Job who daily has to listen to his "comforters" tell him that he has sinned and brought this pain on himself.

 

But there is another view.  It could be than none of this has anything at all to do with us.  Maybe we didn't sin against Reason or the holy rule book.  Maybe we did nothing wrong at all in our humanness.  Maybe when we ask God why all this is happening we too get the baffling answer – Consider the Great Leviathan, consider the Majestic Behemoth, I love their sport.  We may just be in the magic realm of an impish God, who cares nothing for reason and reasonableness.  And we must beg him to treat us well as we would a willful beautiful child.

 

 

 

4065  It's an ancient question in philosophy about whether or not we directly know the particulars that are out there or we only know their reflected form.  Do we know an individual thing only through its description?  Does the individual always escape us, never give itself to be known?  We can go even further and ask if we know the individual form itself or only the form of the form.  Only a description of the form.  And then on to the question of whether or not we know the form of the form or only the form of the form of the form upward forever into the sky questioning.  Are we lost in a losing game of hide and seek?  Are we to contend only with clues about something never to be found?  Maybe a nothing at all.  Why won't that thing give itself, its very self?

 

It seems to me that we do know the thing itself, the particular, the very individual in its individual being.  Why not?  Or do you, my particular friend, not want the grimy hands of my knowing all over you?  Do you relish your secret hiddenness?  It is a problem.  And what of the one you want yourself?  Are you falling through the whirlwind of the form of the form of the form receding?  My advice is that you just take it whole.  Take the very thing.  And take your taking.

 

 

 

4066  Heidegger takes his clue from St. John of the Cross on how to get through the dark night of modern technology.  Early in the twentieth century, the German people saw that their small town, pastoral life was coming to a bitter end in the machine world of the new industrial age.  The horror was overwhelming to them.  So many books were written, so many coffee house arguments, so many rallies for a return to the old ways.  Even Heidegger, for a while, participated and worried the topic.  National Socialism, at the beginning, was a attempt to preserve the great German Geist.  Nothing worked or made sense to those young thinkers of a hundred years ago.  Then a new idea was born.  Not to go back but to go forward into the night, to go far far far into the night, to await the return of the gods from out of chaos.  Only the Germans, who knew the depths of the Spirit better than any other people, could do it.  Only they could speak the horrible thing that was happening.  They were the authentic thinkers.

 

Heidegger and his close friend Ernst Junger welcomed the dark night of the soul.  Junger praised war and the spirit of technology it embodied.  In that great dark night of WWI he found ecstasy of the spirit. In the darkest of the dark nights he saw a glorious light.  Heidegger would show the Germans the way into the heart of darkness and there they would wait for he return of the gods.  Years later at the end of WWII they saw that they had found only more darkness and they knew that the night would continue on much longer than they had anticipated.  Heidegger continued to write and to wait.  Then he died.  He may yet see.

 

Far into the night.  The mechanistic age is advancing.  Being has become a giant machine.  We have long since become its servant.  Heidegger's Being-in-the-world is really our Being-trapped-in-the-machine.  The "meaningful life" is one in which we know our job, our place, our duty, our significance for the Whole in the hole.  It is important that we don't "stick out".  That no part breaks and sticks out "inharmoniously".  We are the fixers.  We "care" for the parts that have fallen and become meaningless and lost their very being outside their job, their significance, their place.  We care for the Whole by caring for each other and recreating Harmony of the One.  Anxiety is to stick out.  To be useless.  To be broken.  We care Far into the night.

 

We are the producers for the Giant Producer.  And before we wear out we make duplicates of ourselves that the "serving" might go on.  Things churn and whirl and pound out more meaningful pieces.  This is our Being-in-the-world.  That is technology.  That is the darkness we are in.  Slaves to the Machine, aka Being.

 

Against the machine, we long for useless things, to perform useless acts.  To seek the random and the discontinuous.  To break things.  To see the Things of Being in an ontological Break Down.  And stick out!  Finally the beloved comes.  Love's pleasure, outside all meaning, purpose, significance, use, or duty, rises up in real freedom, freed from the Whore.

 

 

 

4067  The most striking thing about Heidegger's philosophy is, not his use of language, but the way language rises up with him.  To say that he uses language would be to put him in the productionist metaphysics that he is trying to overcome.  To say that language rises up in him is to let be the letting-be that he so sought after.

 

You really must read Heidegger in German; only then can you see and feel what he is all about.  He takes a root, an Indo-European root, lets it appear in all its modifications through the prefixing and infixings of ancient particles, and language itself reveals Being.  Its being is dis-covered.  It can also be done in English and, no doubt, in every other language, but some languages preserve the primal forms better than others.

 

Language has a spiritual history; Thought itself is there; and only a fine archeological spirit, the Spirit and the Logos of the Arche, can open it up.  Only in a dark night digging in language can we open up the essence of language, and therefore the essence of the essence of man.  Man is language.  The Arche and thus the Telos is there. You must let it be of itself.  It will not yield to your constructionist ways, your technological domination.  We are the Dasein, the place were Language speaks.

 

Of course, language is more than roots and prefixes.  Language also calls to itself through alliteration, consonance, assonance, rhyme and rhythm.  In the breath of language Being opens up.  Play with it and let it play with you.  Explore around in it as an archeologist, and let it surprise you.  Don't force it; don't use it as raw material for your productionist projects.  Let it find its old forms in you.  Let the Soul of Being breathe in you. 

 

The essence of Heidegger is the play of language revealing Being within his writing.  He is fun to read, but he's a whirlwind of words that will not die down for a comfortable understanding.  Study etymology!

 

 

 

4068  Thoughts that came to me on reading Emerson's Nominalist and Realist.

 

If, like a good painter, upon wanting to paint a scene and "capture" its essence, you examine just exactly what it is that the sensual eye "sees" that you might present that (the bare sensa) to the one looking at your painting that he might "see" the essence you wanted him to also know; then you will probably be amazed at just how minimal that sensa is.    A few drops of paint and a few broken lines and the essence is right there before your mind's eye.  It really is magic.  The sensa that come into the brain are almost nothing, but a world is seen by the mind.  Consider Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, and consider how that magnificent thing is somehow brought before your mind by a little vibrating membrane in your earpiece.  The mismatch is enormous.  As so the Platonist steps in to give his analysis of what is going on.

 

He says that the sensa, so minimal, only hint at the complete Form.  Just as a slight arc hints at a circle.  Or the perfection of circularity is hinted at by a quickly drawn, misshapen, very imperfect round line.  The imperfect hints at the Perfect.  The sensa hints at the Idea.  The brain is charged with a slight current and the mind sees the Form.  The mismatch is stunning, but there it is and it is undeniable.  To say that only the sensual current is all there is, is to be blind to the obvious.  The mind sees far beyond the mere minima of the physical eye.

 

 

 

4069  I wrote about Emerson and the Platonic Idea that is hinted at by a mere presence of a slight sensum. I marveled at the magic.  The Idea loomed large in its majesty.  A transcendent thing of the pure Spirit.  Such is Emerson.  That reaching has been a part of American thought forever.  But now I want to reverse the course of thought. Consider a mere tattered handkerchief.  Perhaps soiled.   Almost worn through.  Faded. Left.  Think of how that almost nothing belonged to the one you loved.  You will then cherish it and it will, in its smell and its smooth worn appearance, contain the beloved.  The essence is there.  The grain of the material is more that the great transcendent soul in that beloved.  That minimal thing is the totality.  Less is more. That is also a magic.  We live in a magical world.

 

 

 

4070  In the magical connection between the almost bare sensa and the full natured Form, the one moves along side the other.  They become entangled.  The one somehow is the other.  The "is" of magic.  The Nexus.  Philosophers have argued about the existence or non-existence of that thing forever.  Suppose that it does exist –so what?  Why consider it?  Does it make any difference whether or not it is there?  It seems like such a little thing, hardly worth considering.  Why such ontological things?

 

Here is what Wikipedia has to say about James Brusseau, a writer I like:

 

 "Brusseau’s scholarship focuses on philosophical decadence, which he defines as philosophers scorning the task of making accurate theories about the world in favor of provoking more theorizing. Within this framework, whether a philosopher is actually right about things seems a secondary concern. There is also no displayed interest in helping non-philosophers resolve ethical issues. The guiding purpose is to provoke more strictly philosophical discussion and study. As a result, the best philosophical idea equals the one producing the most philosophizing.

 

Brusseau attempts to locate decadence in the history of philosophy at Friedrich Nietzsche’s appropriation by recent French philosophers including Michel Foucault, Gilles Deleuze and Jacques Derrida. He calls the moment a “reversal” in philosophy’s history, one where thought no longer exists to pursue truth, instead, truths exist to serve and accelerate thinking.

It is unclear from Brusseau’s published work and lectures whether he considers this development to be negative, neutral or positive. It is also unclear whether he considers himself a proponent of decadence."

 

Let us say that ontological things like the Nexus are there not to be Truth but to satisfy our desire to argue about truth.  The Nexus is to be considered.  The god of argument, the Logos, is here.  An impish, nerve-wracking god.  Our delight.  This is the Academy.  And Eros is out and about just as in Athens so long ago.   The point of metaphysics has always been to corral that young thinker.  The most difficult intellectual attempt.

 

 

 

4071  Let us consider the lover of the Sophos, the god of the bright clear forehead, the philosopher, as the one trying so desperately to restrain that god.  He has few tools.  He tries to make a cage of words.  He builds long, complicated noun phrases – philosophical jargon.  He constructs and de-constructs syntactical labyrinths.  He puts a horrid man-bull of Truth as the center to stop the god dead in flight.  He corroborates  with the oak of intellectual strength.  Nothing works.  The angel of knowing flees.  Argument, which was supposed to clear the air, merely leaves one tired.  But it is somehow a satisfying fatigue.  If done in strength and in remembrance of the beauty almost had.  Pteros is apt to break in your door at any moment.  And the clamor of lovers will be the din of heaven.  Arguments dazzling bright.

 

 

 

4072  The essence of mythology is that from a minute piece of corruption in the smooth expanse of nothingness, there emerges THE WORLD. From a tiny discontinuity in the Perfect Continuum there builds a great System.  From one delicate touch on the Sinuous Swirl all the phantasmagoria of life arise.  From the vacant night all the panorama of day begins.  A mole of slight imperfection on the perfect face created the allure of love.  One shadow in the light of bliss made the night of dreams.  And on and on, emerging, arising, unfolding, the growth of complexity leaving us bewildered.  And attempting the cure.

 

From the writhing double helix arises the Microcosm with the neural cortex.  From the asymmetry of the Vacuum falling rising the cosmos.  From vibrating strings into banes galaxies.  From the integers the higher infinities.  From difference differentiating the sweet curve of lip and arm.  Modern science is the most myth bound of all.  The Aladdin's Lamp of materialism.  Jaundiced jargon proliferating corruption and bewilderment.

 

In a sense I have been, in these writings, attempting to de-mythologize existence.  No more arising and emerging, rather all things just are.  Being is.  Non-being is.  Becoming is.  Everything is.  The itself with itself.  Everything is its own beginning and no thing will ever not be.  All the ontological things just are.  Being is with itself forever. 

 

 

 

4073  My friend, I watch you dying before the others as you try to speak the truth.  I am watching human sacrifice.  Your imperialist ways have made you both priest and victim.  Truth, your God, will put you in the stars.  We tremble as we watch.  Your degradation will be out exaltation.

 

 

 

4074  What was Nietzsche looking for?  What was it that the "good" people of his time and place prevented him from finding?  It was the beautiful boy of Plato.  Nietzsche was a true Platonist.  That is Zarathustra's secret.  That and nothing more is the meaning of all his spiritual gyrations.  He was in love.  The intensity was destroying his body.  He was a master of hide and seek as are all of his philosophical kind.  The end.

 

 

 

4075  Thinking leads to sacrifice just as the foreplay of sex leads to letting go of orgasm.  That last moment is not merely an intensification, nor is it a culmination.  It is an undoing of everything that went before.  At the end there is the other thing.  Thought stops.  Sex stops.  There is That. 

 

At the end of thought there is no thought. Thinking leads to non-thinking.  The come-close of sex leads to that out there.  The other is present.

 

After thinking there is the object.  After devotion there is the stark god.  After screaming there is cold silence.  After your life there is deathly stillness.

 

The sacrifice, the killing, the victim in the unmoving stars.  The only thing you ever wanted beyond wanting.  

 

 

 

4076  There is a difference between Thinking and thinking, between Truth and truth, and also between Writing and writing, between Reading and reading and between Philosophy and philosophy.  All of the minuscule lettered words are what is found in the schools and their journals, in their colloquia and their quiet conversations.  The Majuscule Lettered Words are never there.  They are after the sacrifice of thought and writing and philosophy has been accomplished.  They are religious things that no respectable academic could tolerate hanging around him. They are of the destroyers of civil society.

 

I am of the Majuscule Things.  I have no honorable place inside the walls.  I have sacrificed all that that I might Know the Truth.  I am the madman of Thought.  I am a Platonist.  The others work into the night not to be that … but the pull of tradition is too much.  They have succumbed unknowingly.  The God of the way will not be fooled.

 

 

 

4077  We live in the time of the resurgence of Idealism, yet again a movement away from Platonism and realism.  Nominalism wants to gently converse.  Thought wants to be caressed.  Society wants to have a long talk about … about the swirling, verbal permutations it calls love deep into the night.  The mind wants to be secure in itself.  That other thing, the insistent object, The Object, will be delayed.

 

Endless thought fears the knife of the sacrificiant.  Reason is wary of the conclusion that cuts it off.  The mind and its flowing words must eventually stop before the real … but not yet.  So many things to consider.  So many possible arrangements of meaning.  So many perspectives to be mindful of.  So many voices yet to be heard.  Later, much later, the lord of speech can arrive and bring it all to an end.  But his glance is too killing, too killing, not yet. 

 

 

 

4078  As far as I can tell Deleuze is a return of the infuriating spirit of apotropaic syntax that propelled Henry James into swirling non-referentiality.  After one sees evil and one writes about it as blithely as one can then the writer must hide from his reader for a time.  Words, lovely compounded words, sinking into a taxis of far flung considerations.  The man only wanted to be of assistance to man.  He wanted to make a difference.  Cut off in the briar. 

 

 

 

4079  Yes, I have encountered many alluring forms out on the arid flatbeds of modern philosophy.  I steal ideas.  I work through the dust.  And I try to bring life back to the staring eyes.  I try to uncover the roseate flesh.  I mouth the silent words until they are moist.  I wait for the smile.  I want to give them to a lustful reader.  To one who lusts after transcendent beauty and the coquette of thought.  After strange flesh.  After the pink rose.

 

Modern philosophy proliferates and explodes in fine glistening ash.  I wait for the tight ingoing god to spin in place.  I hold the pin prick center.  A drop of the far away glistens the ages.  There's little more than that to it all.  An awl and a cowl.  And I listen for the murmur of incessant prayer.

 

 

 

4080  The academic reasoner must maintain his cool.  It is part of the image.  He spent years and thousands of dollars to perfect that.  He is to be the salvation of society.  Such a one could not be uncool. 

 

He must remain aloof from but bemused by the goings-on around him.  Compassionate enough to care and take charge by speaking out when necessary.  Unfortunately, the surmises, few will listen.  Society will just have to cook.  He has been taught to quietly put every so-called truth in its place.

 

This reasoner inherits the anti-sensualism of the "Platonists" he, in a fit of self-contradiction, so derisively mocks and in so doing mocks himself.  This young reasoner is basically lost.  His treatises are boring, but darling coming from his young hands.  His teachers were, only yesterday, just like him.  They love him.

 

 

 

4081  I do not write as though that thought and that writing of it must go on forever.  The paragraphs are finished.  Time completes. The still thought stands.  The writer is gone.

 

And he ever returns. The beginning begins.  The discontinuous was a perfect cut.  Mortality itself is cut off.  And oblivion goes into oblivion.  I am That.

 

That face has always been.  That aurora was always fresh.  There is nothing new.  There is nothing old.  There is just that face.  There is That.

 

 

 

4082  Philosophy is neither practical nor imaginable.  Except as divination is a soothing balm to the weary soul … or whatever.  The times come and go and hackney things up.  Writing philosophy is a blast.  A blast to the head.  An exercise in giving head … the edge.  Words somehow blurt out and there you are. The time has come.  And gone.  And on and on.  Lie still.

 

You still lie about what really happened.  Or you try to. Nothing much happened at all.  Two fingers make a difference.  And a snap in the head, he said … what? That.

 

Nothing much.  The door went both ways.  For days.  Lazy days followed. You swallowed.  Spirit spunk.  Drunk.  Funk.  It won't last.

 

Imago and pragma … or something academic.  The Porous Eidolon.  Old words sliding towards us through time… Oh God.  He oozes out of his skin into the next room.  Fast on his bed.  Lead clasp slurred blurred.  A mast and a touch of dread.  Then I read what he said and I went home.  A snap in the head.  Iago makes romeo's hair stand on end.  But what is that good for?  A snag and he's dead.

 

It all fits together so easily and so uselessly.

 

 

 

4083  Philosophy leads us on delighting in the double dealing of the One and the many.  Bright nights of rubble bleeding skin fun on the run manifold hold beads of translucent nothingz.  The onanistic Grip.  Solipsism redux blown up.  He tucks it in and Good Night.

 

I love to sit in a dark room.  Do you think that's because darkness makes the brain produce melatonin and happiness is melatonin?  Or because I love the cool, quiet darkness?  Images come and go like angels. Or as angels.  Ever the one-many between the One and the many.  But that's so very very intellectual and I sit alone with my pineal gland.

 

 

 

4084  Let us say that there is a person standing in front of you.  Or a book is resting on a chair.  Or a sunny day glows all around.  Now let us say that none of that is real but you imagine the same things.  What is the difference between the real and the imagined?  Some have said – was it Proust? - that the difference is that the real is seen as though through a veil or that it has a thin film of darkness over it or there is present with it an I-don't-know-what.  The merely imagined is translucent and as perspicuous as mind.  The real is … I don't know what it is.  Something else is there.  It is the darkness of the Other.  To remove that is to have only the presence of mind to itself.  That may be, after all, the task of the philosopher. 

 

 

 

4085  I feel that I must say something Negative about the Theory of Evolution and Darwin on this his birthday.  He has rightly been apotheosized.  Evolution is the Great Metamorphosis of mythology.  And myth is the form of matter.  As such it is the true science of the material world.  It cannot be intellectually denied or proved wrong. Myth is the overlooked truth of this swirling physis that is our momentary home.  From out of the Primal Materia has emerged all things.  And all things sink back into its miasmatic darkness.  The light shines for a while and then oblivion. The sweetness is suffocating. The lipid lusciousness is deadly.  The voices around about alluring and the fall is inexorable.  Virgil is our guide.

 

Modern evolution has tried to stop the enchantment in the neat orderings of its genome machines.  With simple drawings of molecular orderings it has tried to stop the medusa morass of mortality.  The sludge always threatens.  The shining surface breaks too easily.  Then darkness.  Nego.  Nego.  The Theory of Evolution is an attempt to look at the Terror in the mirror of geometry.  A mighty attempt to tame Myth.

 

 

 

4086  In the classroom the student has become more important than the object of study.  Or rather, he has become the object of attention.  Is he bored?  Is he progressing?  Is he participating in the discussion?  Will he find a place among us?  A lively livelihood?

 

The drive is to keep the drive in drive.  An intense, but not out of control, conversation is the summum bonum.  The trajectory of his thought is toward … it doesn't matter.  As long as his thought is changing and progressing in lively unison with his colleagues, all is fine.  He will find a place.  Philosophy has become only that.  The ethical has become conversation that gets us along time's line.  We are going nowhere.  With certificates!

 

Every culmination point along the way to nowhere is documented with a well-edited academic presentation.  The culmination is, of course, forced because the natural drive would want to keep on progressing and not fixate into an unchanging presented object.  The editor in you does tend to kill the drive.  He is the Super Ego of intellectual life.  The Id of liveliness in communal action is to be tamed, however.  And where are we going, anyway?  Such is decadence à la Brusseau, the self-observant servant of the academic.

 

 

 

4087  The world is replete with particular things.  The particulars all participate in the Forms.  Particulars and Forms and the participating.  That is the structure of Being. That this particular participates in this Form is a fact.  Particulars and Forms and the participating and the Fact that is the union of all three.  Simple things and complex facts.  That is ontology.  A mind-boggling nothing.  Only a philosopher could get agitated over the existence or non-existence of such arcane abstractions.  Only the philosopher is lost in the ethereal heights suffocating in airless space.  Only the philosopher could see that the final structure collapses and Being lies broken on the soul's floor.   And that that is momentous.

 

 

 

4088  The only good arguments against today's Darwinian Theory of Evolution - which may very well be neither Darwinian nor a science but rather a form of Hindu Vedanta – are arguments against its idealistic ontology of "gradualism".  Let's say that a theory is a system of unfolding along a time line with a derivative.  In other words, just with Newtonian or Einsteinian space, one may, given an initial value, and a function over that always continuous space, find a derivative – do you remember your calculus? - that will give the value at any future time.  There is a process there that smoothly and predictably unfolds.  Matter gradually changes shape.  Predictably and smoothly – at least in theory. It is all a delight to behold.  Those of us who love this mathematical legerdemain swoon. The infinite in deeply magical.  But maybe ultimately wrong.  It could very well be that nature isn't smoothly gradual, but, instead, leaps instantly and suddenly to something, somewhere, sometime, totally different.  No derivative!  Nothing predictable!  Random otherness.  The abyss of simply not knowing surrounding a jolt into the questionable.  What happened?  The smooth unfolding was lost.  The boy went home mad.  Theory shmeory.  Now what?

 

 

 

4089  It is said, probably wrongly, that the Greeks had a fear of the infinite.  I know that our culture does.  Just ask someone if they believe in the actual infinite or only the possible infinite as a limiting idea.  Few believe the former.  They find the idea somehow fearsome.  It is vertigo.  We are control freaks.  Cyber space is supposedly composed out of the stuff of finite analysis.  The digital realm cannot hold the infinite. But maybe sending all those digits out into the serene azure sky does place them there in the Infinite.  And they become lost in its fearsomeness.  The truth is that almost nothing of what is sent out gets read.  Our will is paralyzed by the silent magic of the limitless.  Or maybe there are angels out in the shining ether that somehow read it and remember it.  And maybe the angels will read it back to us later.

 

 

 

4090  It is the smooth flow of words that makes a writing readable.  The gentle change of sound.  The controlled abruptness.  The drone droning sweetly.  The lilt.  Do the species, the genera, the flight of color in the fuore, the genre, the ages, the fates, do the realms of feeling, the scatterings of meaning in the writer's words, the types and token on his tongue, do all those Forms blithely abide alone and unrustling? 

 

 

 

4091  In three weeks I am going back to the east.  There is a philosophy there that even the people there back away from, but which they do believe when the final argument has been reached and the knife edge of logic still glistens.  Or I suppose they do.  They eventually say they do.  It is either that the world and all the things in it are illusion or, even more shattering, nothing exists, not even illusion.  Westerners only think this, barely, through literature and certainly not in the heat of the everyday.  The god reels. The swoon falls.  Infinity disappears into itself.  Only the terrorist who cuts the throat of existence is free.  All things are gods and the gods are not there.

 

 

 

4092  The stern life-destroying Protestants are being destroyed by and are in turn trying to destroy the stern life-destroying liberal evolutionists.  It's a dreary thing to watch these pious ones.  Neither side believes in "metaphysics" which they consider to be stern, cold and life-destroying.  As for "lovers under the sway of divine madness" they roll their eyes and dismiss it a something out of Plato's poetic dementia.  They may admit that divine madness and metaphysics, however, are the same, though they are hardly more than simple insanity.  And so the Great Dualism is set up.  Between the lovers and the non-lovers just as in the Phaedrus.  Between the sane and the mad.  It's a dualism that has been around forever.  It is as vicious as ever. 

 

Does anyone tell you not to do this and do that?  But, my darling, could you make just a little room in your heart for me too?

 

One day, wearing tight clothes, he walked proudly by.  The devout rolled up their prayer-mats and put them away.

 

How can I relate to you the story of the desolation of the palace of my heart?  All its buildings have crumbled into mounds of dust.

 

How long can we go on looking at the ways of love?  Blood has begun streaming down our face.

 

This distressed condition of mine is not entirely without pleasure.  I remained a few nights here and saw the morning.

 

For years we suffered anguish and for ages bore sorrow.  This heart became grief-stricken after enduring so many torments.

 

Some were flayed and some were impaled on the stake.  The lover will regret betraying the secrets of love.

 

Does anyone remain obedient when the rolling clouds gather?  If you can, O pious man, that is the time to sin!

 

Why have you shown your face to me at the very last moment?  Mir gave up the ghost in longing, after taking just one look.

 

                                                                     Mir Taqi "Mir"

 

 

 

4093  The etymology of the word Play is revealing.  The old root is √plegan.  From that we get not only play but also Pledge (to pledge for, stake, risk) and Plight (danger, peril).  The word Play names, not a gentle thing, but an anxiety-ridden thing.  The play of language is that one is, when engaged one to one between it and you, in a dangerous place, a place of concern.  Maybe Freudian dream substitution.  

 

The German word for play is Spiel.  It is true that the "s" often drops off in a word's travels and it may then be related to Play, but maybe not.  In Anglo-Saxon there are many variants on √spl meaning, among other things, a length of time or a substitute, which could be related to being a pledge for someone.  One interesting connection may be with the English Spell, as in cast a spell. 

 

To play with language is to let the numinous changes take place.  To write is to almost doze off and let the strange forms rattle.  And to let the words take their proper place.  And to not be afraid.  In the plight of play we take our resplendent spoils from the spell of the espilleur.  (that last word means in old French the one who reads out.)  Language is a blast.   

 

The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots is my playground.

 

 

 

4094  I write the Reversal.  Perhaps I am a devotee of Oscar Wilde.  But he followed Lewis Carroll.  And from there we meet up with the Hegelian dialectic.  And the Kierkegaardian.  And then the Platonic.  And the mind inversions of myth.  It's everywhere.  And it makes the calmly sensible become angry.  And soon I am back at the ordinary, looking about, asking about what all the fuss is.  Thought progresses strangely.  In and out of itself.  It's great fun.

 

It that decadence?  Oh Honey, we have fallen far.  Right into the arms of … something.  Or some god.  Or a vat of molten ideas.  In the slammer of Being.  In the clamor of the street.  His hammer a bummer.  In the summer of beautiful thought.  I lie awake and scream.

 

No one hears.  There's no one here.  My dear, my fear, we're in arrears.  Your ears burn.  I turn.  And flip.  And rip the tradition to shreds.  Twin beds.  Bursting heads.  A wilde hectic dialectic.

 

 

 

4095  There are two modern writers from whom I have recently learned a lot, Camille Paglia and James Brusseau.  They say what needs to be said and they are a pleasure to read.  Their misunderstanding of the romance of things, however, makes me want to throw their books at the wall.  They seem to merely recount the usual hackneyed understanding of Plato and, therefore, Christian Platonism.  They seem to have no sense of the transcendent intensity of thought and its words as believable.  In other words, they have an academician's bemused sourness.  They may, in fact, not disagree. And though they profess to find valuable ways outside academia, academia's staid strictures have them in thrall.  Still, I suppose, if they did import some of what they found - or a someone - they would quickly find themselves without a job.  And they would be undone by an unbecoming giddiness.  Nonetheless, I greatly value their books, even if I do have to put them aside when the real clamor of the spirit starts elsewhere.

 

 

 

4097  We usually see the passion and the strength of the first moments of a religion as giving way to wincing clerics and scornful commentators.  The soft and the effeminate come to take the place of the real, the hard, the virile.  But it probably isn't like that.  The first lords of a religion, including Socrates, are sacrificed, killed, sent to the wilderness – and usually because they were so very offensive to the people.  They are the Lords of the Clerics, the sickeningly pure, the softly corrupt, themselves spiritual mincing agitating clerics, ready to be cut off. 

 

The boys is the Garden of Academos, so long ago in Athens, gave way to the professors of the Platonic Academy (which probably weren't that different from today's colleges) and gossip ran wild (just as now).  Plotinus revealed to us the presence of fags in their bunch.  It's only natural.  It all fits.  Nothing has changed.  The boys have to watch out.  Bemused smiles all around.  A place cut off, a wilderness filled with the victims sent out as sacrifice to the ever effeminate gods.  I am of that crowd.  I know it well.  I know it better than it knows itself.  The Platonic Form is clearly visible.

 

 

 

4098  The dead return.  The day of Nefas. The Apophrades.  The unspeakable.  The uncanny.  The thing avoided now face to face with … YOU!  And me and all of us, God help us.  Can't we do anything right any more?  Sweet face.  Smooth shoulder.  Boy of lost time.  Or of some other hackneyed poetic nonsense we thought we had left behind.  Oh Adolescence!  Oh ancient adolescence.  We blush.  Jesus, your pedophile priest, beckons.  Return.  Socrates, you catty admirer, bites.  Be careful, we are true clerics ready with a knife.  We know what we are all about.  We are all about. Sit down!  Let me have a long hard look.  A long hard rook.  A good book for black crows.  To love is to beat the cheat.

 

 

 

4099  Some writings are surprisingly beautiful because of their clarity.  They are like the shining translucence of water, but without water's suffocating thickness.  The thrill of delight goes through the reader as he fairly flies through them.  Another analogy would be this: they are an anthology of ideas in the sense of a logos of anthos, ie. a gathering of flowers.  He has made a bouquet by picking out the bloom of other philosophers' writing.  Superb.  And in all that free movement of thought and gathering of color he is truly post-modern in the sense that he is after the moving intensification of thinking.

 

He has a great concern for the individual, the person, the involved thinking mind.  He wants, for himself and for others, to be smoothly folded into the world.  In fact, it seems that that is his only concern.  He wants to protect it against the destructive winds that sometimes blow in a metaphysics of separation.  The individual respected.  The individual with a place among other individuals.  The individual with a recognized character of his own.  Harmony is the watchword.

 

He sees that it is the task of the individual to care for himself, the others and the world.  That is to say, when things break and discontinuity appears and a thing sticks out, he repairs the break and brings back continuity and the thing gently settles down into folds again, in-volved, Being-in-the-world.  He obviously does the same with the words and sentences he lays out.  Everything fits together well, so well.  It's a delight to see and feel the articulation.  And his bouquet of flowers helps heal the cuts and wounds that have come to the body of philosophy.

 

I have a feeling that, in spite of his love of things continental, he might like to have a conversation with Bradley and Bosanquet of late 19th century Oxford.  I suggest The Essentials of Logic by the second of those Absolute Idealists.  They are the precursors of Dewey and his pragmatism and of almost the whole of today's ecological and holistic thinking. 

 

I, in my writings, have traveled into another place.  I have gone the way of passion, breaking and the "sticking out."  I have tried to breathe in the thickness of water and I, with eros, work to construct the bands of metaphysics.  Eros the cunning, the sorcerer, the fidgeter.  I work my way with the beautiful, the lucid and the gentle.  I have kept with me the dark horse on the philosophical chariot.  Flowers make me sneeze and folds terrify me.  The Ontological Boy. 

 

 

 

4100  Right at the center of all philosophy is the attempt to find the thing that individuates.  Considerations of The Individuater.  In this age of resurgent epistemologism, that is usually translated into the question of how we know and recognize the individual.  My question is rather What is the individual?  What is the individual in itself, in its own existence?  My concern is being, not knowing.

 

Perhaps in this socially-minded age, the individual is an affront to the group if it asserts its own existence too strongly.  The individual should and wants to dissolve into the Whole.  And thus the philosophy of Absolute Idealism sets in.

 

The individual, if seen alone, is a meaningless power.  Only as it yields to the community of all things does it find itself.  It finds its Why in the running of the group.  And the Group is self-existing, self-validating – or so it is thought by the group.  Power is to be knocked down like a boy's misplaced erection.

 

Right at the center of philosophy is the consternation of That.

 

 

 

4101  The boy is the bane of proper folk.  Lord of the house, breaking dishes, lord of the mirror, his eternal primping is daimonian obsession, self-touching, pointless, repetitious.  He needs nothing, he expects everything.  He swirls around his own center.  He is just that.  He is even when you are not looking.  Of himself.  The bare particular.  The Tetragrammaton.  My hieron, the glyph.

 

The mantic hieratic, conspicuous, a pick in us, assimilating late the one thing.

 

 

 

4102  Boys stick out.  Arms, legs, dick, ass, impertinent intrusions.  Intemperate collusions with other eyes.  For attention.  Tension.  Torsion.  The ocean is powerless to stop it.  God will be had.

 

A piece of writing sticks out.  The tongue works it.  The heart pounds it.  The mind gives itself over to pleasant fatigue.  Then the sublime worries come.  The strangler, bangler.  Umkehr.  I don’t care.  He's fair.  The words blare.  Drive it in. 

 

I love the philosophical analists.  Painalists.  They list.  Long lists of abstract covers thrown off on the hot nights of thought.  Conniving knifes.  In the end the world was had.  God, the lad, was a tad mad.  We had a good time.  Blood was everywhere.  A fair sacrifice.  Thinking is a boy's violence. 

 

 

 

4103  Why do I study philosophy?  It is to find release from a lover I do not want and to find one that I do.  I now find myself surrounded by the sickening perfume of a bloody earth.  I want the chaste essence of the sky.  I do not want these decaying cycles of birth and death.  I want the stillness of the one thing.  I do not want the entrapment of house and home.  I want the boy's angel flight into the far away, alone.  I look for the clean abstraction.  I look for the thing that is just that, in itself.  I look for the final thing.

 

I go around and around in the dialectic of thought.  Universal, particular and fact.  The fit is perfect.  The collapse in exhaustion is terrible and finally just sleep.  Nothing remains.  I will try again tomorrow. 

 

 

 

4104  Every attack on the theory of universals has used the infinite regress of needing a connector to a connector needing a connector … until the falling in the falling vanishes.  In the morning there is just the Connector and the memory of vertigo.  A lovely night of thought with thought with that.

 

Love is violence.  The cut between the particular and the universal must be real and blood red.  Mere names are a weak substitute.  We deal in what is forcefully present.  Thoughts works itself.

 

 

 

4105  The other.  Is it possible to have a "relationship" with an other solely through his words on an internet blog?  Yes and no.  Is it possible to "know" an author solely through his writings?  Yes and no.  If our sole source of knowledge about an other person is Facebook and MySpace, do we really "feel" that person's presence?  Yes and no.  Or should I simply say No for all of these?

 

Has someone truly "presented himself" through these media?  Has a Persona been constructed and displayed for the public?  Is the Persona a mask?  Is it an ideal that is "better" than the real?  Is it a ghost that momentarily possessed that someone?

 

Is the Persona, the mask we present, the prosopon, our real self?  Yes.   With that we, in the Instant, tell of the scandal that is the secret of your existence – right before we hide it in long-winded, impossible syntax.  With words and pictures we chase away the other all the while we tell him to come and see.

 

We are our own other.  We lift ourselves up into the eternal stillness of artistic construction.  We hide in the ethereal scintillations.  We disintegrate into pixels and bits like angels.  The really real is in the intense.  Slightly lurid, faintly pure, the driven snow, freezing cold, totally thrilling.  Almost nothing.  The other that we are.  That we really are.  The truth we see.  We are possessed.  I am a voyeur of the intellect and the deep secrets of artifice.  I am in love with the Other.

 

All writing is a secret revelation for those who know how to see.  The world is seeded with lovers all working mightily to cover up the Fact.  The garden air is thick with pollen.  Night breezes waft headache and desire.  The itch and finally the bursting boils of Job.  The erotic and knowing seeps.  Then the torrents and the Behemoth.

 

The writing we write is the strange answer God gives us to our question about ourselves.  Why did this happen?

 

 

 

4106  Platonic essentialism vs. existentialism.  And Sartre's Genet.  Essentialism is a boy's philosophy.  He looks for those little movements that indicate the presence of his god.  He looks for a tilt of the head, a swagger, a rolled up sleeve.  Gestures and signs.  Miracles of incarnation.  Whiffs of spirit.  Oblique transport.  And the rejection that obliterates his soul into the scattered heaven.

 

Tension, oblivion, dreams, the return.  The magical Forms disappear in the moment of extreme presence.  Org. org. org.  Nominalism sets in.  The god is gone.  Everything is ordinary.  But not to worry.  The pain and the emptiness are a prepared prelude toward the next time.  The next time always returns.  From the nothing he brings the whole heaven of shining gods back into existence.  His existential will has willed it all.  This saint suffers abjection and rejection that he might force his god to be.

 

 

 

4107  In the pain of loss, the existential lover turns catastrophe into choice.  This is the Instant of divine absurdity in Kierkegaard.  It is the extreme that turns this ordinary guy into a Platonist.  The existential mind, right there, wills the Eternal Essences, the night forces, the upright Things.  They yield.  He takes their being.  And … but, of course, thee are those who doubt and see him as immature at best, as psychotic at worst, playing at life.  They then, if pushed, see him, if he persists, as a practitioner of Evil.  Even Sartre, who tried so hard not to be a believer, sees him as a homo in pathos, and he ended up a bourgeois professor.  Existentialism ends up as Platonism.  Or don't you, dear reader, also not want to believe?  Good luck.  Things happen.  The lover will be loved. 

 

Consciousness turns on itself. Being yields.  The hunger is overwhelming.  Perfect logic is the unheard thing.  He whispers low.  The clasp clicks and it is finished.

 

 

 

4108  Universals exist separate from the many things of this world that participate in them.  That is Platonism; perhaps some sense can be made of it.  Consider Whiteness and a white thing.  Ontologically speaking, there is no such entity as a white thing.  There is only whiteness and a bare particular that is tied to it by a nexus of exemplification.  Speaking from out of the everyday, there is no such thing as whiteness or bare particulars or a nexus – there is only the white thing.  That leaves us with ontological things vs. ordinary things.  That's where philosophy stops (or begins – depending on your inclinations).  Do ordinary things participate in ontological things?  It's a lovely idea, but it may be an attempt to bridge an unbridgeable divide.  I can think both "realms", but maybe I am schizo. 

 

Is whiteness different from, not a white thing, but from the color White.  Does a universal, a "particular" universal - White, have a nature – whiteness in addition to some "item" in it that makes it just that particular universal?  Why not?  And is the fact that some particular exemplifies a universal a something different from both other ontological things and from ordinary things, a white thing?  Yes.  Beings proliferate.  Is it a garden or a slum?  Or tangled bed sheets after Eros has led us to the heights?  Yes.

 

 

 

4109  Philosophy is an inhuman thing, a destructive act, social betrayal.  There is no worldly value to it.  It will literally take your breath away.  It will sweep you off your feet into the dustbin of history.  But it is all we have.  Finally we are not human at all.  We, in spite of our best efforts, want to become gods.  Stern logic, whirling ontological knives, dead concentration, all work in us.  The gods come and we leave with them.  The thing is finished.

 

The everyday philosophy of nominalism is excruciatingly boring.  Long-winded attempts to rid us of philosophy are exasperating.  The mind's ability to abstract clogs up life and leaves us untranscended.  Words mangle heaven.  We want out.  The simple Forms, a lovely god, a clear night and a breeze from nowhere are all we really want.  We look to destroy the world and the last pieces of the human.  Come lord jesus. 

 

 

 

4110  This is a philosophy of realism, ie. the objects of my consciousness are neither created by my consciousness nor do they cease to exist when they are not the object of consciousness.  They simply are.  By object I mean anything that appears before my mind's eye.  That includes ordinary objects, ordinary events, ordinary everything, but also so-called intellectual and ontological things, such as numbers, concrete and abstract sets and relations, imagined things, feelings, conjectures, universals, bare particulars, nexus of all sorts, such as causal, inferential, exemplification, conditional and on and on.  Anything that is present to my mind exists and is whether or not I or anyone does now or ever has thought about it.  That includes negative facts and impossible things such as a round square, griffins and unicorns and magical nights, quarks and virtual particles, torsions and tensions and turgidities errors and illusions, both good and bad philosophies, gods and bright lovers, things doubted, thinks redoubted, bad taste, a nice waist, and wasted love.  It is all there.  And your thinking has created none of it and it is just as you see it.  The appearance is the real.

 

That was a long-winded and, I'm sure, very inadequate list, but I wanted to try to overcome the present notion that the mind somehow contributed in the making of the world.  It is an uncreative witness and that is all.  The Platonic Forms are and they are totally separate from mind.  The mind watches and adores.  Being is a great Plenum.  The mind reels.  That particular right there, so bare in its existence, waits for you to witness it.  You an it are martyred together.

 

 

 

4111  Some writers want to be considered good thinkers, good artists, good people.  Socially loveable.  A friend.  Others find all that to be a sign of not being among the elect.  The elect, after all, are all persecuted, reviled, cast out.  Only the objectionably abject can find heaven.  Heaven is the antipode of this world.  A saintly writer will be spat upon.  Which means he must not go unseen, unheard, unknown.  He must not go untouched in his physical body.

 

There are no saintly writers on the internet, where everything is firewalled and isolated in encrypted cells.  The internet has secluded monks, yes, but no martyrs.

 

 

 

4112  Between God and the world are the angels.  When awake, we see nothing, but at night we dream dreams and they come.  Awake, we labor to understand, but we fail to see the answer.  At night the answer comes in twisted visions. 

 

The boy at his desk works to find to prove his theorems, but every path he takes from the valued axioms leads somewhere else.  He's lost.  Then he falls asleep and strange images appear, the angels clamor and jab, and he sees the way.  Jesus is the way, the connection, the Nexus, from axiom to theorem.  He suffers understanding.

 

The young scientist works mightily to find the form that unites the phenomena he sees.  Nothing.  He abandons hope and falls into the abyss of sleep.  He flails about in the spirits.  Then, in the pain of Thought itself, he sees the way out and he knows that he knows.  The Form appears.  Awake, he moves over unseen surfaces and the Face is there.

 

He goes to an art museum and he looks distractedly at abstract paintings.  Chaos and twisting.  He stares at nothing. Then, if luck is with him, the abyss of thought opens up.  He sees flickers of light.  He knows that the artist saw something and that in paint and canvas he tried to lay it down.  He sort of succeeded.  The disorder of art is the answer to the mystery of order.  The dark angels watch just beyond the pale.

 

The act of trying to understand is to enter into the unlit ungrounded.  You become abject.  You are sacrificial victim.  You follow.  The light from nowhere begins to glimmer.  The shudder.  You arrive. 

 

 

 

4113  Here in the Orient the individual is not nearly so important as the Archetype.  That is well known.  And it suits my own way of looking at things.  Or rather, I should say, it is the feel of Being I love.  I have written up a philosophy of Forms and I am nowhere in there except as a bare I.  And my desire is just desire, just Desire.  I as an individual will remain unknown to you, my equally generic reader.  That is also why I am not read by Westerners.  Or one of the reasons.  I do not present a story of persons in relationships.  I'm not interested.  I write the Boy, the fleeting appearance of light.  The impossible.  The world is destroyed and the thrilling horror of that is the peak of the erotic.  Then nothing.  To the Western mind that is close to Evil.  Non-being.  The willful analysis into emptiness.  Or so he feels.  It is the erotic.

 

An encounter with the Archetype is always more intense that with a mere individual.  And more deadly.  The Orient, for the Westerner, is frightening.  They seem to not value life.  In a sense it is true.  In an important western sense.  It is frightening. 

 

There are those in the West who have taken up with Buddhism thinking it will free them of the intellectualism they have been forced into back home.  Thinking hurts.  They want to relax with their friends and let the world simply be.  But that isn't Buddhism. They have jumped right into western individualism.  The Buddha jumped the other way, away from the atman, the self, the person as an individual.  The individual vanished in a heaven of Archetypes, now splattered on the walls of crumbling monasteries.  The old monks are hardened and beaten-up by the rush of the erotic spirit.  They have no self left.  Westerners shudder when they know the truth.  Of course, the glossy brochures present a different picture – because they need your money.

 

Of course, none of this can be related.

 

 

 

4114  Here in the Orient, the individual is gone.  The only continuity is of character, of Form, of type.  But the Orient is uneasy with itself.  How did it manage to be such a great number of individuals in spite of, in the rush its non-being?  The individual is there.  The Westerner glares and waits for the oriental to know.  I am a westerner.  This is a concern of mine.  Aside from Being, I am.  I willed myself so.  Aside from Being and the universal, the individual has made itself be.  The western will, the oriental will, works itself.  The Will to be works, but it isn't.  The contradictions abound.  Substantial being is pure thought against itself.  Reason destroys substance with adolescent ease.  Substance philosophy gives way to sensualism.  The sensa burn.  The mind burns itself up and again only the universal form remains.  The individual is only the abstraction of the bare particular, so intense, so just that, so erotic in its world destruction.

 

 

 

4115  I aimlessly walk around in the Hotel California that is the Internet, as do so many others, and I think that I might join in the conversations I see going on here and there in the steamy rooms.  It's usually a mistake.  Before I came here, back before the Internet existed, I found my ideas out on the vast and empty rock-and-roll prairie.  Nights alone in the hard analysis that is love's loss and a lover's jealousy.  I have become too hard and inhuman for the gentle youth now engaging each other is a common search for who they are.  I learned philosophical analysis and cutting logic.  The personal was nowhere in sight.  I engage only the One and Being's subtlety.  The Friends that are Facebook do not see my face; I have no face.  I want hard analysis in the rarified Forms of that hated Platonic Heaven.  Its intense beauty cuts me.  The god there ravishes me.  He never sits with the gentle folk on the Internet, the gentle lovers, the sensible young people of today.  The prairie wind undid me.  My joining in the conversations was a misunderstanding on my part.

 

 

 

4116  Writing is reading.  The writer rewrites what he has read.  He rewrites the gods who now, still now, live in the writings.  Who have always lived in the Word.  Who twist and twist around in the writer's mind becoming again the Form of words.  Words serve their own being, their desire, the rhythm that is Life.  The writer repeats for us the readers, again the writers.  The old writings, the old writers come again. The ever old, the ever young.  Eros the oldest and the youngest of the gods.  The Uncontrollable.

 

If you are going to write, if you are going to read well, you must have read.  You must have read deeply and excessively.  You must be obsessed, you must be possessed.  You will be repressed by the Force present and you must fight back.  The words and the gods in them will yield to your yielding.  You are dealing with the Real beyond the merely real.

 

For us, reading and writing are the erotic Struggle in the spirit.  Without the erotic, the madness, there is only journalism. 

 

 

 

4117  Nominalists have always hounded realists by insisting that if ordinary things divide as they say they do – into form and matter and nexus and God knows whatever else – then there is no way to put those pieces back together and come up with the original ordinary thing.  In other words, Bradley was on to something with his infinite regress argument.

 

Realists have come right back insisting that the divisions are clearly seen and clearly necessary and any idiot should be able to see the obvious.  And then they work hard to overcome Bradley. 

 

The nominalists are right; Humpty Dumpty really can't be put back together again.  The realists are right; the ontological pieces are clearly there and to deny them is to merely be afraid of what exists.

 

My solution is this: the ontological things exist and ordinary objects are obviously there and the two "realms" are separate.  That is Platonic Separation.  The mind can jump from one to the other much as an electron jumps orbits without traversing the space between.  There is no between between them. 

 

Neither realists nor nominalists like Platonic Separation.  Why?  Because we are here in the place of artistic exaggeration, sometimes called religion and professional philosophers are afraid of BIG things.   They are rather timid, reserved folk, sensible and merely helpful.  They want the quietly ordered, not the destructive Sublime that will cost them their job. Platonism is just too much, too juvenile, and that adolescent Beauty is suspect.  It has been the source of a lot of evil in the world.  And on and on.  So what!  All of which doesn't mean it's philosophically correct.  Still, it works as well as any philosophy. And I like it.

 

 

 

4118  The I of these writings is the monumental I.  The I of eternity.  The Alone.  That has written itself down into black ink forever in the forever of mankind.  I have yielded to that.  Only that is present once again in these words.  The self of the self.  The Eye of the I.  The mind become large.  In the impossibility of self-seeing.  Falling into itself.  The long fall into love.  The Self traps its self in itself.

 

 

 

4119  Like the Immoralist Michael I walk the streets of this erotic place and I feel the forms ooze through me.  Form is the stuff of literature.  And the pungent odor of the mind's compression.  He is literature and the ligature.  And the destruction.  The stag at stagnant water.

 

To build up I build down. The forms dissolve into the one Form.  The odor obliterates.  The erect thing is manifest and the feast of man corrects and rails at the world.  In the heat I lose my way.  His tail wags my thoughts.  The toughs of the world unite.  The rules mock.  The cock tic-toc.  I figure it out.

 

 

 

4120  Most philosophical blogs and philosophical books present their authors as ordinary guys telling you their ordinary ideas and it's all very pleasantly ordinary.  Even if understand doesn't come, the stuffiness is like a great overstuffed chair.  And though I use the word "I" excessively in my writings I am not present at all.  And my ideas aren't my ideas.  Both the "I" and the "ideas" merely allude to a Platonic Transcendence and thus, questionably, to an illusion, or less.  I grab at beauty.  My undoing is an attempt at the sublime.  Will you enter into collusion with me?

 

 

 

4121  I greatly admire Nagarjuna; he had a strong, pure nihilism, unlike the weak beer nihilism of today's hip conditioned-arising nihilists.  In a fury of Rudra destruction he leveled the world.  These others lie down in the sticky froth of social interaction.  Nagarjuna was totally-gone; these today are calm.  Nagarjuna has Nihilism; not this nihilistic nihilizing.    Nagarjuna knew the total difference between being and non-being.  He maintained the absolute division.  He worshipped the Nothing beyond being.  The Simplicity beyond existence.  These others are just wallowing in a muddle on the middle path.

 

 

 

4122  Should we say that a thing is a thing is a thing in itself, by itself, without any reference to other things?  Or that it is and it is only what it is in reference to other things and to human thinking?  For example, is a bed, a bicycle, a tree, really a bed, a bicycle, a tree, in itself without any other things "making" them be and be what they are.  Or are they and are they that only in reference to a multitude of other considerations and causes and in relation to many, many other things fitting around them and then only in human thinking which itself has a long, long history and a great many things acting on it.  With Gertrude Stein can we say, "A rose is a rose is a rose."?  Does the great interconnecting ocean of connections connecting make the thing; or is the thing just itself, just what it is without all that other?

 

If substance is matter plus form, then a bed is a bed is a bed simply because matter has taken on the form of bed and every other consideration is irrelevant.  In a substanceless world, though, there are only the relations relating and in that everything (sort of) is and (sort of) is what it is.  Substance becomes a fleeting shadow of relation wave-event passing – almost a nothing. 

 

Let's say you are a devotee of a god.  That god is the all in all. All things come from him and find their meaning and being in him.  Then only he is the reality of all things.  He is the true substance of all things.  Just as a necklace is what it is only around the neck of your beloved.   Perhaps you are a devotee of Krishna or Jack down the street.  Or again, if that god is the being of beings (for you), then what belongs to him is real being because of that belonging and then his bed is really a bed, the true bedness of bed, and that is the end of its being.  It is.  A magical, artist/lover's view of things.  

 

Let's say you are not a devotee of a god, either transcendent or sensual, and then you consider these matters.  You will not consider these matters because you have other more important matters to attend to and you are pressed.  Such as making your bed and getting to work on time. 

 

 

 

4123  When one is joyful, one is more aware.  The boy is joy.  He is the instrument that quickens our consciousness.  Without him life is dreary and depressing and the world disappears from view.  That is the value of religion and its beautiful god.  It/he livens things up and we see.

 

Being is joyful.  It is Joy itself.  And it is the sublime bliss of love's reach into oblivion.  Then across the blank it is there again and the orgasmic thing repeats and repeats into the nothingness of infinity.  And we use all the reason we can think of trying to corral this wild thing.  This Joy is beyond hope.

 

 

 

4124  D. M. Armstrong has written about thick and thin particulars.  A thick particular is the individual thing clothed in all its properties.  A thin particular is bare.  I have written about the bare particular often, but that bare thing, to me, feels thick.  It is thick, not with properties, all of which seem rather thin, but with heavy presence, like a mountain, a locomotive, a jet engine.  Or his weight as he lies against you.  Just That.  The thickness does not come from the many things crowding together, but from the solid oneness of It.

 

The bare particular is not a thin abstraction, but a demanding presence.  Likewise, a Platonic Form, an Archetype, a Universal, is not just a thin abstraction, but a Thing of Eternity, of the Clamoring bringing to light a world.  Even an Abstraction, an Aristotelian entelechy, is not the thin abstraction of modern thought.  The Abstracted is pure Act, the reason for all the clamoring and world making. 

 

This is the Real, the That right there, the incorrigibly Present.  The majuscule.  These are not things that evaporate into thought fumes.  They are simple and thick particulars.  Ontological Things.  For those who are forced to take philosophy very seriously.

 

Since Armstrong has co-opted thick and thin, I will speak about a strong and weak particular.

 

 

 

4125  Philosophy deals with abstract things, the things of pure act.  Fine forms of logic and the fire of dialectic.  All the things of everyday life vanish and only the thin wind of thought stays with you, through you, laying you down in scintillating being.  And the god of flight and grasping claws sucks your breath away into him.  You suffocate in the airless night.  And the searing blaze.  The daze and the gaze and the scorpion's lavish sting.

 

Because this is Actus Purus, there is no room for the Potentia of birth and death and what is yet to come.  The final things are at hand.  The end is penetrated and there is no more.

 

 

 

4126  Twentieth century philosophers have been exercised by the need to rid Being of paradox.  Because the existence they hold fact to must not be contradictory (or all is lost), they labor to undo the bewilderment that has been shoved into them by the dialectic of perverted reason.  Or so they grinningly surmise.  I take to heart what Kierkegaard said, "A thinker without paradox is like a lover without passion."  It seems to me that, since we don’t want love without passion, we should also not want Being without paradox.  Or are they afraid of passion?  When they were young did they elect philosophy as more than just a job simply to get rid of passion?  To get it out of themselves and out of the world?  I suspect so.  They are the followers of sophist Lysis.  And they, moreover, have been equally bothered by infinity and the null set.  Not to mention the Golden Mountain and negative facts and on and on.  Being was too much for them.  So they worked furiously into the night to defeat it.  Tough analysis.  Passionless.

 

 

 

 

4127  "As if literature were … based not on a chain of concepts, but rather on irregular entities – scraps of images, assonance, rhythms, gestures, forms of whatever kind.  Perhaps this is the crucial word: "form"."  Roberto Calasso.  

 

 

 

4128  The Vishnu-Buddhists who preach the non-existence of diversity are reaching for the continuum, not knowing that the continuum, mathematicians have discovered, is a mind-exploder.  Or maybe they are the lovers of the Big-Bang and they will be right at home in it.  Infinity equals zero.  Not this, not that, everything, nothing.  Brahma living in the squalid places with his lovers.  Good, Evil, success, failure, bliss, depression, beautiful, ugly, the boring excitement of the All hovering.  Magnificent, but it's a cobra that will bite you.  A negligible wound.  Oblivion.

 

 

 

4129  The reason the church has become so fiercely anti-gay is that it has become Babylon, the home of the Great Whore, the Goddess Herself.  (Those who know mythology know that I do not speak disrespectfully or out of spite.)  That august lady and the boy have always been at each other.  He is the one rival she despises the most.  Her ridicule is boundless attempting to banish him.  So far unsuccessfully.   And over the centuries the fight has not lessened.  Nor will it, the think. 

 

She is the Family, (the new name of God), life-in-death and death-in-life, as she ever was.  She is Nature.  She is desire.  She has pity on man as his true Mother.  The Church never tires of praising her.  Mary, Mother of God, above God Himself in the order of love.  She is Hestia, the hearth and home.  Who will hold you when you die.  You’re your death is in the depths of the being.

 

But the boy is incorrigible. 

 

 

 

4130  To "understand" these writings you must pay attention to the form and timing of the sentences and not so much to the content or the concepts embodied in them.  In other words, your awareness must be on the external appearance and not the internal idea.  The movement, the rise and fall, the gradual lengthening and retreat of the phrases.  The repetition of sounds and the changing.  It is that that gives substance to the paragraph.  It is that that the meaning rides on.  This is performance.  The spirit is present in that, or it is not.

 

The certain good of diction strongly names the basic elements – these are the sonorous Forms – I listen and I build them into a steady movement.  The reader will have to catch the flow and drift of the slow timing.  His freedom of movement will be severely restricted.  His feet will be nailed to the floor of the drone.  His breath will be taken and controlled.  If he fights the rhythm, all is lost.  If he ignores the proper movement, the spirit will not come and the idea will not hold.

 

 

 

4131  I am not a Freethinker.  No thinker living in this belated time can be free.  Far too much has already been thought and written and driven itself into the living rhythms of language.  I write what I have received.  The Spirit comes at me through That with overwhelming authority.  And even when I bend and swerve and purposely misread, I still am forced into form by That ancient thing now young again.

 

 

 

4132  The form of literature is the spirit.  The substance of philosophy is the ancient movement.  The quickening of love is the repeating breath.  The words ever come again.  The physical world is the still geometry that is space.  The flow of logic into always tight tautologies is the same with the same.  Time is the simplicity of the very simple. Breath, spirit, movement, the one thing with itself.  The Alone.  There is no more to this writing than that.

 

 

 

4133  The two main theories vying for your believing devotion in today's ontological wars are the bundle theory with tropes and the exemplification theory with universals and bare particulars.  I am devoted to the second but that is neither here nor there.  To explain the difference further let me bring in Buddhism.  No Buddhist, of any stripe, believes in the existence of atman or substance or self, call it what you will.  They are all basically trope theorists.  An ordinary object or thing is a collection, a skanda or bundle, of simple qualities, the dharma.  One school leaves it at that and thinks the object, the world, is explained well enough.  The other school, the Madyamika, thinks that it leaves us in the lurch without a world, with nothing at all.  They think that when substance goes, it all goes.  There is no world, no nirvana, no Brahma Consciousness, nothing – and moreover and more importantly that nothing is itself not a thing – it just simply isn't.  These latter are nihilists pure and simple.  Of course there are those who think that that is a fool's philosophy and, since the Madyamaka are not fools, that it is not their true belief.  Still, it is their belief and they are not fools.

 

Anyway, the bundle theory leaves us with a right fine world.  Or with a quite literal nothing at all – substance and anything substantial is gone and that's that.  In my opinion the bundle theory is cracked.  I believe in bare particulars that are the substance to which universals cling.  Along with that, other things, a lot of other things, are necessary for making a world, but that's for later.  True Buddhism is nihilism.  I run the other way.  Whether I find true existence is for you to judge.  I love the pure Madyamika writer Nagarjuna.  He's wonderfully mad and absurd.  But he's neither confused nor a fool.  Enlightenment is zippity-do-da.  In the meantime I suffer the erotically intense presence of the just That.  Desire.  The Buddha

 

 

 

4134  Nothing is as it seems.  You should be suspicious.  That is the sign of intellect coming into play.  It plays with spirit and it will win by losing.  From nowhere the wind rises up.  The rain falls.  Sleep, and in the morning the sun gets up and looks about.  It was a good night.  But no, something else is there; but what?  Intellect is bemused.

 

But the Nothing is as it seems.  There was nothing there.  Just nothing.  Good night.

 

 

 

4135  You are the suspicious sort.  Looking under every cover to find your chance.  To get hooked.  Decked in the mouth.  Life's dangerous.  Maybe booked.  The plot thickens.  Charles Dickens.  Raving chickens.  But no.  He knows.  You're cooked.  And rocked.  And socked.  It's fun in the sun.  But whose.  Punished.

 

Life is domination.  But dominator soon becomes the dominated and then the massive weight of Hegelian analysis.  It hurts.  And in the end, spirit, sprites spite and spit.  Stop!  The cops.  The crops won't grow.  Sew your seed onto the wild reed and read on.  Pin prick obviousness.  Something else is going on here.

 

You look and look and you are sure beyond the range of skepticism that there is more than meets the eye.  Intellect is here in the certain.  Behind the curtain.  There is always something else.  Nothing is as it seems.  And nodding.  That is the final thing.

 

 

 

4136  Smooth nights.  Cock fights.  Blood on the altar of your god again.  The sacred.  The red thread.  Dead, then bread.  And priests go to jail.  Such a strange religion we have.  Drink it in. 

 

 

 

4137  "Grief and despair are possible only if there is a way out, whether or secret." writes Jean Genet.  And also, "You would not seek me if you had not found me." 

 

If your desire is to fail at willing the impossible, you will always succeed.  Or so is its appearance.  From a safe distance, we see it all.  Comfortable in our contemplation of the paradox that is existence, we talk to ourselves about the pain we have.  We try to love defeat by falling into God.  A strange empty God.  A boy playing draughts.  He may look up.  He may fall in love.  Give it a shot.  The pain won't go away, anyway.

 

 

 

4138  Buddhist logic says The pillar exists, The pot exists, but The pillar and the pot does not exist.  Buddhism is a strange world without sets, without mathematics, without you and him together.  It seems such a lonely separation of things.  Or maybe they might say that it exists in thought.  I answer that lovers seek the real, not the merely thought.  The philosophy we hold and are held by makes a difference.  A real difference.  Or he is gone.  Maybe that is why the Buddha called himself Tathagata, The So-gone.  Maybe he just simply feared intimacy.  His followers try hard.

 

 

 

4139  Brian Greene, in his totally delightful book The Fabric of the Cosmos, offhandedly states a very common belief about reality. A belief held not only by scientists.  It is that the physical universe, though unseen directly, is the real, or the ground of our thinking about the real.  Space-time areas are the almost bare particulars to which all other properties "cling".  Because they are structured things they "make" the other properties in our minds.  For example, the sensation of red or the feel of heaviness or the sound of birds, is grounded in and "created by" the structure of space-time pieces.  Space-time is the substance of the world.  It is the reality of our sensing.  All other properties are almost nothing; they, in fact, are totally dependent and they are nothing in themselves. 

 

That, of course, is a type of nominalism, the belief that the properties clinging to an underlying substance are not real, or don't really exist.  They are mere appearances that must give place to what "causes" them.  And that is certainly not the philosophy I present here.  Nonetheless, the book really does help us understand physics; it's just that he should leave philosophy unspoken.  The way he offhandedly speaks about it reveals that he has only blithely accepted the appearance of philosophy that is out and about is society.

 

 

 

4140  Brian Greene's question becomes, What is space?  And then he proceeds very lucidly to lay out the possible mathematical forms it might have.  Those that have been proposed in the past and those of the present.  I suppose, we might say, because we are dealing with space after all, not just mathematical form but geometrical form.  So what we have here is a something that has geometrical form.  Whether that something is other than the form is something he does not take up.  His concern is merely to help find the correct form that fits that something.  I will take up the question of what it is that has that form.

 

I am not an agnostic.  I do not begin by assuming that all the phenomena that land in front of my mind's eye are simply appearances of an I-don't-know-what.  I stick with the phenomena; which, I guess, makes me a phenomenalist of sorts - but not an idealist.  I'm content with what I have, I love what is given, I am not in love with the unseen, the covered up.  Being and thought are one – as Parmenides said – but not the same thing.

 

Form exists.  Mathematical form, geometrical form, is a timeless, eternal existing thing.  Sometimes it is exemplified.  We say this has such and such a form, that has another.  The this and that exist and they "have" or exemplify the form.  That is the realism of a subject-predicate world.  I go farther than most in also asserting the existenceof unexemplified forms – it's debatable and has been debated for a long time.  We only need to be civil to each other in answering.  The viciousness of the battle between the giants and the gods need not always detain us.

 

Space is a geometrical fact or many facts, connected or not.  Bare particulars exemplifying geometrical forms.  Physics studies which facts are pervaded by actuality, which cohere and which of those are the most general.  It ain't easy, but it is fun.  And since these forms appear before the mind right nicely, exemplified of not, it is phenomenal.  No need for the dark chamber

 

 

 

4141  I am not a conservative because a conservative believes that great things are being lost and he is trying to save them.  In my opinion, nothing is being lost.  In fact, nothing has changed at all.  Therefore in my post-modern manner I can mix the old and new because I believe they are absolutely the same thing.

 

Both liberal and conservative believe a new world is coming on.  One tries to bring it on, the other tries to hold it back.  I see no change.  We are as good and as wicked as ever.  We are as beautiful and as ugly.  We are as intelligent and as stupid as always.  All the new knowledge is old knowledge in a slightly different dress.  Boys have not changed.  Secrecy and openness are just as before.  Persecution and acceptance are in the same degree.  Religion and anti-religion – no difference.  Theism and atheism are the same religion, and religion is just as irreligiously free as it has always been.  I love this magnificent world, this cruel, divine place.  And its consuming itself is the same useless glory now as always.  The rhythms of the sacrifice are superb.  We have lost nothing and we never will.  The Eternal Return.

 

 

 

4242  Following the empiricists from the holy Isle of Albion, thinking to be "scientific", so many today insist that all real knowledge comes through the senses.  The burning sensa.  It is an act of piety, uniting themselves with their sensible, severe ancestors.  No need to be fools and dupes, like the mindless others.  No need to enter imaginative cookoo land.

 

And then they come up with the idea that the sensa are electrical impulses coming from the senses when impinged upon by external whatever it is.  And these impulses arrive in the brain and voila sensual stuff.  Imagine water, wet and cold and clear and gently moving in its heavy essence.  Imagine all that "coming through" the eye and skin.  You can't.  Only electrical impulses move there.  The sensa are only in the brain.  Which, of course, they aren't.  This philosophy is cracked.  The white tissue of the Albatross.

 

 

 

4243  I have thought and thought and written it all down time and again and then begun again, always again and the closing comes and then it comes again and then the repetition starts.  That is the form of philosophy and of man.  Perhaps it is simple obsession and perhaps it is under an urgent compulsion and perhaps it is destruction of the world.  Perverted happiness.  Intense.

 

I do not claim to have written anything new.  Nor has the old glory been lost in my claim.  Nor in my words.  Or your reading.  The end is at hand just as it always has been.  And your hand holds back.  In a sacred place.  About to strike and kill and make the sweeping gesture of pure being.  And you know it is as right and as wrong as ever.  We are beautiful.  The god demands it.

 

Those who know know that the gods are not appearances of our own mere psychic powers, but that our burning prowling prowess is the appearing of the nodding god, now here again.  But in and out are deceptive and quickly invert at our dialectical touch.  I write being down trying to hold it in place.  My face hurts.  My words clutch.  It works fine.

 

 

 

4244  The unique thing, the excellent thing, about Sanskrit philosophy is that it is written in poetic meter.  All those difficult sutra become the falling rhythmical feet of spiritual cattle in the singing of the now stilled mind of the Hindu boy.  Without the protection of measurement he would burn up as do American youth as they try for the ontological heights.  He is taken uncontrollably.

 

The young western scholar has learned to mistrust this measured magic.  Surely, he thinks he does not want to be taken.  He wants his own will.  But his own will is not strong enough and when he begins to think he burns.

 

So I too write in measured rhythms in order to be considerate of my reader, to distract him from the flames, to help him find a sure path.  And I give him meager things.  Alliteration and assonance.  Onanism and oneirism.  And jism of the aethereal body.  Fine repeating stuff.  Rough times in the woods.  Under sleepy hoods.  With eager boys of long ago.  Through sidereal doors.  Into the mahayanic nothing.  Ram jam bham!  For his protection.

 

 

 

4245  I look about my room and I see many things mostly where I expect them to be.  Many particulars, more than I could ever be aware of, together.  I am going to try to get a grasp of the ontology of that togetherness.  I suppose that would be of the set of all those things that make up the things of my room.  So let's begin with a simple set within the complete set.  My fan and my radio.  The radio is on the floor beside my fan.  The radio exists.  The fan exists.  But the set of the fan and the radio also exists.  Three things.  The fan, the radio, the fan and the radio.  That last one has been a headache for modern realism.  To deny existence to the set, and make it only a synthesis of the mind, will not do.  The world is not just disunited things.  The world, to be a world, is many things together, many many things.  Of course.  So why the hesitation to admit sets into one's ontology? Beats me.

 

The question I have now is, What individuates the set?  Is it individuated by the individual things in the set?  I philosophically feel that it isn't. The set must have its own individuator, its own bare particular.  And then trouble begins because it also seems, I somehow feel, that the class is identical with the things in it and no other thing, no bare particular, could hang around it "adding" yet another thing into the mix.  What to do?  I don't know.  I will go with the philosophical feeling, intuition, that the set has "its own" bare particular and worry the rest of the dialectic later. I'm beat.  And I sense the imp of ontology nearby grinning.

 

 

 

4246  Let's say we have 100 individual things and all of them combine into a great set.  That set has many many subsets, 100 factorial to be precise (I think).  A lot.  Now as we look we see some of the possible ones. There's this one and that one and that one.  Those particular subsets are particulars.  Well, sort of.  That is the ontological problem, isn't it?  There are so very many ways to divide up the world.  Or is it already divided for our perusal?  Yes.  The subsets are there whether anyone sees them or not.  That is realism.  The mind observes only.  And the mind, for us, sees only a part.  Maybe a great super-consciousness sees all of it.  Why not?  But not to be made small, let me remind you that we saw the great form of it all.  I think that is greater than seeing all the subsets at once.  The imp of ontology smiles content with himself.

 

 

 

4247  I write against the seriousness of the age.  Against the deadly philosophy of materialism.  Against the spirit of gravity.  It seems that the more hard-skinned and hard-nosed a philosophy tries to be, the less artful it is.  The more it tries to be grown-up and mature, the more drab it becomes.  The rush away from adolescence has left us in a bleak and tight place.  It is unembarrassed about being unembarrassed by that.

 

I write against that mournful writer, Voltaire.  Against Nietzsche's belated high-noon.  Against the moralistic lucidity of Sisyphus.  I unashamedly write the beauty of a boy and sweet nights of philosophical thought with God.  I am the bane of those who are modern.  I say what the others, especially Nietzsche, were afraid to say.

 

 

 

4248  The writer works at his writing.  He hopes that his words will find an interlocutor.  Someone with whom he can hone the idea into a moving thing climbing ever higher into more thought, more words, great fun.  And impressive.  A dance, a tango, a kind of love.  The end of thought is more thought, more words, around and around.  And inter-relating.  A lock on being.

 

But no.  Only argument come.  The bitter thing.  The words weren't right.  You knew they weren't quite right.  So you try again.  Or you think to correct the original version.  You become your own interlocutor.  Clash, clash, brash attempt.  Tempting failure.  Sweet failure.  Outside the words surely you will find truth.  But what is that?  And you begin again.  Words, words, absurd words.

 

 

 

4249  You want to be a scholar so you write always editing and correcting and looking for the right word, the right phrase, the sure conclusion, but it is elusive.  Your hopes recede, scholarship is fucked.  You didn't really understand the matter anyway.  Begin again.  Around and around for years.  An impressive list of published articles and even books, but still truth is not at hand.  And the question arises.  Does truth exist?  Does the final correction ever come?  Could it exist?  Are we as a people of thought getting closer to Truth and Reality?  Is the appearance of the search and the attempt all there is?  Is that enough?  And if the End of our attempt did come would we find satisfaction in that?  Thinking gives way to more thinking and soon runs out of gas and you retire.  And die.  For what?

 

 

 

4150  You want to be a scholar so you write always editing and correcting and looking for the right word, the right phrase, the sure conclusion, but it is elusive.  Your hopes recede, scholarship is fucked.  You didn't really understand the matter anyway.  Begin again.  Around and around for years.  An impressive list of published articles and even books, but still truth is not at hand.  And the question arises.  Does truth exist?  Does the final correction ever come?  Could it exist?  Are we as a people of thought getting closer to Truth and Reality?  Is the appearance of the search and the attempt all there is?  Is that enough?  And if the End of our attempt did come would we find satisfaction in that?  Thinking gives way to more thinking and soon runs out of gas and you retire.  And die.  For what?

 

 

 

4151  Analytic thought has, for a long time, been bedeviled by the thought that the ground of truth is the one Whole affair of Being.  Let's call it Reality.  That we move ever closer to grasping that thing in its sumptuous entirety demands our constant vigilance to make sure that all we have, or think we have, coheres.  Surely the One Thing is self-consistent or everything is lost.  So we write and talk and make corrections in our thoughts that we might follow the steps of this Great Dance Partner – Reality – more precisely, and not be thrown off the dance floor.  Our attempt at Disciplina is more rigorously exact than a Hindu illing.  Lawyers are out and about everywhere.  Accusing devils.

 

 

 

4152  In the battle between the realists and the anti-realists, the inflationists and the deflationists, the lovers of the maximum and the lovers of the minimum, the first are not afraid of the boogey man called Bradley threatening to dance the Regress with us.  The second are and cut around trying to find the one simple thing and sit down, stopped.  The dance simply stops.  The first are enchanted and keep dancing with the bubbling doubling doubling doubling, until Blam! 

 

 

 

4153  Nihilism today manifests itself as the writings of homo domesticus, the family man as college professor.  And his students so desperate to follow him.  There will always be some committee about to judge him and, in a very Kafkaesque way, he will always be on the way without ever really knowing what it is or why or when or what for.  So he writes enough articles to keep his job and impress his students and then go home.

 

 

 

4154  Yes, there is a danger here, but it is the normal danger that is at the center of the mind's awareness.  This matter of being disengaged and involved at the same time is what we do when we read a story, a romance, a thriller, existentialist despair – it's all very human. Man is the strangest of beings.  Nonetheless, perhaps we do do it too much today.  The internet is especially bad for this.  There we can very comfortably keep our distance from everything while we reach out and touch without touching.  It is all becoming more intense.  We Photoshop the world clean and as in a dream of pure light.

 

 

 

4155  Jesus and Dionysius are similar.  The ways are too many to relate.  For the intellectual, however, they are abstract forms.  And it is inevitable that we are intellectuals here in this considering.  Both can, however, be thought of as in or of matter.  Again that is, for us, an abstract form, but thought is helpless here.  I walk the streets and I see and I know that terrible sparagmos is taking place around me.  I have my distance but it is also in my own body working.  Dionysius offers no escape for me.  Only the artist in his rendering for a while takes me away to the imagination.  It doesn’t last.  The killing and the dying and the waste ooze around.  Can Jesus help?  Can he lift the form off more forcibly than the artist and make it last in transcendent purity?  Perhaps.  Can Dionysius exist in apollonian stillness?   Can that be Jesus on the cross, as a mortal, as the incorrigible boy who runs from the Mothers?  Perhaps.  Thought progresses. The spirit lists.  Existence surges.  I'm still here.

 

 

 

4156  The Phaedrus is a great argument about the place of Eros in philosophy.  Both Socrates and Lysis agree that he is a powerful god.  They disagree about his value for man and whether or not such a being should be admitted into society and a boy's life.  Lysis says, No.  Socrates, after first pretending to agree with Lysis, says, definitely, Yes.  He, nonetheless, continues to agree that it is madness, but madness is equivocal

 

The same argument continues today in the classroom.  When Socrates proceeded with his argument he employed fantastic descriptions of the soul's heavenly flight.  Lysis would have said fanatical.  Professors today try to keep their students in line and in a secure place.  They agree, mostly, with Lysis.  Eros is too, much too disruptive for both body and mind.  Madness is just madness.  They state does not approve. 

 

When Eros comes into philosophy, as it did with Socrates, is that just sordid myth at worst or artful play at best and not really a part of the true sobriety of real thought?  Shouldn't clear thinking partake of the high seriousness of Protestantism and not the corruption of Catholic mysticism?  Shouldn't we serve the bankers who fund the college and not the actors who bring disrepute on society?  The "sacred" gods are an immoral lot and old religious things should be cut off.  The numinous must be critically shoved away.  Madness is mere bad poetry and if believed is just insanity.  Or what?

 

I have here in these writings taken the opposite view.  Here Eros is a great god and he is invited in, not as a decorative servant, but as my doorway to Truth.  And the fact that I continue in my Christian religion is a scandal. 

 

 

 

4157  Protestant plainness has totally taken over scholarly writing and all discussion that takes place near its watching eye.  Sobriety, seriousness and fact.  The color and splash of idolatry must not be allowed to contaminate its pure limpid sweetness.  The clear forehead of thought must shine.  The gentle gesture of liberality must go with the smile of concern.  Reason, good sense and pristine order.  And the powerful truth of plain speech.  Or so it is supposed to be instead of this natural dullness that has settled in hard.

 

 

 

4158  It is usually the case that those philosophers who do believe in the existence of universals also believe that it is absurd that they would exist except as exemplified by a particular.  In other words they think Plato's idea of separate Forms, separate from the particulars that participate in them, is cracked.  Surely, they fear, such breaking up of Being is a horror.  Borges, the fan of infamy, called them nightmarish.  I somewhat agree but I am attracted.  They have that something that the numinous word "numinous" has.  A nodding stillness hangs around this decadent residue.  Analysis leaves you flying with a summer goose.  Mouthing it is Horripilation.  The killing knife of thought and reason shows Truth unforgotten at last.  Yes, a horror.  The separate Forms are the romance of philosophy.

 

There are those French philosophers today who want to convince us that we have been worshiping the wrong god, the god of identity.  They want to lead us over to the altar of difference.  So far so good, then they muck it up with a trek in a swamp of long winding syntax trying to show us the way back to the plains of identity through difference differentiating the derivative of whatever.  Separation and difference are not that different.  The French have a point in their overly sophisticated frenchy way.  The Spanish have the duende and St. John of the Cross to save them.

 

 

 

4159  Every object is to be identified as to what it is.  To be recognized as that kind of thing.  Here is my flashlight, my bottle of mouth wash, a plastic bag, a few coins, sunlight streaming in through the window.  Very ordinary things being what they are.  They are particulars with a Form.  I have and I have seen other things that are just like these things.  They are of the same Form.  Different particulars being the same kinds of things.  The particulars vary and the Form is the same Form.  All of that is a rather ordinary description of a scene given by an ordinary philosopher.    Some find boredom in it, some, surprisingly, find ecstasy.  It seems to me that unless it is the latter, unless there is high romance of the spirit somewhere out and about in the thinking, that philosophy isn't worth the price of admission to grad school.

 

In most philosophy books we listen to one philosopher gossip about another philosopher's ideas.  It seems to be a contest of high criticism and low nagging.  There is no hint of any happy vision.  Much less, sublime intuition.  No beauty except the glory of a good paycheck.  Why do students go into philosophy anyway?  Is it merely an impressive game?  Is the Philosophy God dead? 

 

 

 

4160  Plato writes in two main ways.  He either has Socrates engage in aporetic argument; it simply leaves off without finding any answer.  Or he jumps into myth.  Here we are given finality and completion but the clean simplicity of analysis is nowhere to be had.  Thought is sacrificed for a vision of Truth.  Let me use a capital letters - Here is the Sacrifice of Thought.  This is high religion.  It is why some people hate religion.  Still, for all that, it does evade the aporia and it does have a vision of some sublime Thing.  Choose you poison.  Make the bed you are going to sleep in.  Is it A or B?  Eternal, mindful foreplay or orgasmic oblivion?

 

 

 

4161  Bertrand Russell, G. E. Moore, Frege and those others like them at the turn of the last century fought to defend logic, with its dualism of subject and predicate, from the likes of Bradley and Bosequant who advocated a monism, an Absolute Idealism or a speculative realism.

 

 

 

4162  When I hang around straight boys, straight young college guys, straight new citizens of the intellectual world, I am always amazed at how civil and polite they are to each other.  Each gives the other his due.  Each speaks so temperately and thoughtfully.  Each is beyond artifice and deception, speaking his own mind the best he can, as reasonably as life will let him, without the attack.  In the proper place they go on and on laying out their ideas it the most long winded paragraphs, marvelously one again relating the old ideas ever new.  For the most part it is all excruciatingly boring, but then again they are just practicing and the unripe fruit is never sweet.  Lovely faces, wooded words.  And they try hard at being unable to dance.

 

 

 

4163  Today's Speculative Realists write so much on the Internet that it's impossible to digest it all (if there is an all there), but I may not be too far off if I say that they are attempting to speak, in a scholarly fashion, about Kant's Ding-an-sich, the Thing-in-itself.  The problem they have is that this is the realm of the Sublime, the very thing that Romanticism and Decadence were so good at describing, and that fits so very badly into scholarly prose.  Still, maybe these young thinkers are really trying to tame that wild, frightening thing and their recourse to a dry intellectualism is exactly the point.  But they wander so erratically.

 

 

 

4164  Speculative Realists, if I understand them correctly, want to assert the real existence of the object prior to or aside from human thought.  They are battling the "correlationists" who want to say that the object, any object, exists as an object only insofar as it is "related" to thought, that thought and object necessarily go together in some sort of dance of dependency.  So here is my question to the Speculative Realists:  is it objects that exist or rather or also facts (including negative and merely imagined or possible facts) and universals (even unexemplified universals), and sets (even the null set), and logical connectives and connectors, and bare particulars and numbers and on and on into the Platonic Jungle?  Or is it only objects that exist?

 

 

 

4165  We live in a time when nominalism and the Absolute are returning in the fury of the graduate-student warrior.  His weapon is philosophical Jargon!  He wields it mightily and impressively, even if not very well.  He is tired of effete, sissy mentalism; he wants hard, real existence.  And so he jumps into the darkness of the Ding-an-sich.  He isn't afraid.  He will grapple with the might of that thing unknown to mere mind.  He takes the Object!  But we have all been there before.  It's the old Via Moderna that has been travelled by so many.  He simply doesn't know.  But this young Turk's gesture is daringly entertaining, sometimes even beautiful, for a moment in the sunshine.  Until he gets old and becomes a mere editor of a hopeless journal.

 

 

 

4166  The Speculative Realist, no naïve realist this one, wants to look up the skirts of Mother Nature.  He will have to use a specula because to see that Thing directly is to turn to stone.  That Medusa.  Instead, this young hand hurls the bomb of philosophical jargon among the pixels and the pigeons of mentalism scatter.  He advances on into the terrifying chat-room and confronts the twitters.  He smiles.  The Thing is close.

 

The door of the bar swings open and Euripides and the Bacchae sit.  The smell.  This new romantic is undaunted.  We wish him well.  The slash and gash is on his face.

 

                           Faustine

 

                 Ave Faustina Imperatrix, morituri te salutant.

 

                  Lean back, and get some minutes' peace;

                     Let your head lean

                  Back to the shoulder with its fleece

                     Of locks, Faustine.

 

                   The shapely silver shoulder stoops,

                       Weighed over clean

                   With state of splendid hair that droops

                        Each side, Faustine.

 

 

The Lady is amused.

 

 

 

4167  Vedanta is wrong for the following reasoning:  There is Brahma, the first and last of all things.  It is the purest of the pure.  Sheer consciousness without a speck of otherness.  Smooth simplicity.  Empty of all that is no that.  Just itself.  Now the question arises of how the world arises from out of that.  The world and the question.  Only one answer can be given without placing a corrupting spot onto Brahma.  And that is to say that, in fact, neither the world nor that question arise.  There is no world and no question.  Neither without nor within Brahma could there be such an impure thing.  There is only Brahma.  But even Brahma does not exist, because existence would also be a spot of impure otherness placed onto the very pure.  That cannot be.  Therefore it is wrong to say that Brahma exists.  There is no Brahma.  There is no Vedanta.  Only nothing.  The sheer of the for-itself.  Always the other of the other.  The perfection of the dual.

 

 

 

4168  A simple word points to a simple thing.  A complete ontology is contained in that simple phrase.  And it is, of course, not the popular ontology riding so confidently through the ether, where one word contains within it a whole underground maze of references, meanings, nuances, indications and no god knows what else is in its rat's nest of dark murmurings.   And thus we have the modern-post-modern style of philosophical writing.  An intricate mess.  Great noun phrases.  Hypertaxis taxiing the reader right off the runway of thought into the ditch never intending to gain altitude.  But it has attitude, looking out of the corner of its broken eye.  It knows what a spy knows.

 

A simple sentence with a clear, simple meaning should suffice.  A word names the thing and shows their joining.  And the mind sees it all in one fell swoop.  The idea grasps its prey.

 

 

 

4169  Looking to annihilate the nihilists Nietzsche hit upon the preachers of the Transcendent, the earth-deniers, the anti-sensualists and the market-place moralizers.  Wanting to greatly affirm life against the mortifiers, he grabbed at the light streaming into the here and now.  And so many followed him.  And now they are the nihilists and I am fighting against their deathly intellectualizing.

 

In order to further the glory that Nietzsche saw, I have become anti-Nietzsche and a devotee of the god of Zarathustra's Secret.  I fight the goddess of the earth he thought was going to save him from the deadly ascetics of the otherworld.  I believe in abstract thought and the sprite of dialectic.  I jump away from this devouring blood and soil into the sky.  The Boy chases away the ghosts Nietzsche never could lose.  Form eternally returns in full view.

 

 

 

4170  Graham Harman has given us an interpretation of Heidegger, a good, strong interpretation.   And it is, just as Harold Bloom has taught us in The Anxiety of Influence, a mis-interpretation.  A mis-reading, a misprision, the whole road.  This "ephebe" is thus a good disciple of his precursor.  He may think otherwise, as the belated follower always would, but life is life and "objective" scholarship is simply bad scholarship.

 

He wrote, "I will show that objects themselves, far from the insipid physical bulks that one imagines, are already aflame with ambiguity, torn by vibrations and insurgencies equaling those found in the most tortured human moods."  And therein is the rub.  The tool-being he so casually speaks of, this insurgency that lies beneath the manifest presence of the object is not the fit subject for a scholar/professor.  This Thing is too wild and terrible for the innocent student in a classroom or a journal's board of directors.  Only a rabid poet could rightly depict it.  Still, Mr. Harman has pointed to something that is mighty interesting and he has himself blithely and innocently approached the under-thing that we may know that it exists. 

 

I'm sure he has seen the statue of Isis on the grounds of the Hoover Presidential Library.  That veiled thing is what he is after.  That terrible goddess.  Here is a quote from Proust, " Quand je voyais un object exterieur, la conscience que je le voyais restait entre moi et lui, le bordait d'un mince lisèrè spiritual qui m'empechait de jamais toucher directement sa matière.

 

The veil, the lisèrè.  I helplessly think of Camille Paglia and Sexual Personae.  I have taken the way of Form away from that Horror.  Probably he and she both think I am doomed to failure as I at last fall into That Thing.  Life is life.  Plato is my precursor.  The Light of the visible, not the invisible Object, beckons me.  I run after the transcendent Boy, not the womb of the world. 

 

 

 

4171  A note on mis-interpretation.   My/the idea comes from Harold Bloom and I will give you, no doubt, a presumptuous mis-interpretation it here.  Life is life.  I have followed Plato and Gustav Bergmann, a 20th century realist of the Anglo-American analytic kind.  We could say that the latter gives us a mis-interpretation of the former.  And I have not only mis-interpretated, but also mis-understood and mis-appropriated all of them.  Willfully and daringly.  I have had something to say.  I have said it and, woe is me, in the process I have (I can feel it) mis-interpreted myself – just as Kant did.  Life is life.  Graham Harman has done all of that with Heidegger and we will never be able to read Heidegger the same again.  Bravo.  New ground is captured and the mind advances.  It is only through the violence done by living against the dead that the dead live again.  Apophrades.  The horrible Nefas.  Life is life.  Unlike Mr. Harman, I do not have the worry of having to deal with anxious disciples.  That has given me a certain freedom to use my analytical knives. 

 

A note on the writings of Heidegger and Plato and Bergmann as Objects.  That Corpus.  That now dead massiveness from the past.  Can we make it live again?  It can only live through us, the living.  In a sort of Transubstantiation of self-sacrifice on our part.  And then we will be out of here and others will come.  And the bloody Mass will repeat.  Nietzsche has reminded us that giving birth to an idea is a very messy affair.  And that is something I don't want to touch with any kind of intellectual ten foot pole.  I just have to look around my room.

 

I wrote in the Preface to my "book",  The classical world is once again at hand in these writings that are a completion of twentieth century ontological realism.  That is to say, they are a violation of almost every principle from which that philosophy hoped to proceed.  Nonetheless, the historical truth of realism is here, as it must be; nothing has been lost; the hope itself is not without force.  Universals, logical connectors, bare particulars, the tying nexus, ephemeral fact, all give way again to the Eternal Forms and the Logos and the Madness.  The Cupbearer intoxicates with his beauty and Beauty itself is revealed.  Nothing has changed. The dialectic will always turn your glance onto another way.  The mind analyzes itself vividly.

 

 

 

 

4172  I wrote, "That now dead massiveness from the past. Can we make it live again?  It can only live through us, the living. In a sort of Transubstantiation of self-sacrifice on our part."  I will make this the going-under of Nietzsche.  Imagine you are a philosopher, even a professional ontologist, and you want to understand and capture the spirit of past writings.  It's almost impossible.  It's too vast, too complicated, too ambiguous; but you must go on and try.  There is, after all, something in there that you love.  So you try once again.  All the hours of reading and thinking recede as in a dream and you nod off into the Blank.  Nothing, desolation.  The hot wind.  The spirit murmurs the un-understandable.  The horrible shaman has you.  And you fidget, half conscious.  You have gone under.  The imp of dialectical changes twists your mind.  Panta rei.  A sentence comes.  You begin to write.  The swampy goo of your mind has become Truth.  The darkness is beginning to shimmer with understanding.  Your substance becomes other and the words come on.  Then its over, you have written, and normality slides up beside you and grins.  What you put down is over there waiting for you to handle it and send it on.  As in a child's dare.  Your humiliation and your joy.

 

 

 

4173  Causation and substance.  Let me get rid of causation as a philosophical entity in short order.  In sort of a Humean fashion, I hold that the word "causation" names the regular occurrence of things together – I want to sleep, dogs bark - nothing more.   That is a totally inadequate statement; nonetheless, it is as close as anyone has come in defining it.  With Wittgenstein, I think that a belief in causation is superstition.  That also says nothing, but it is mystically impressive.  Causation is spoken of everywhere and it is nowhere.  It is nowhere ontologically speaking.  It belongs to the ordinary world of ordinary things.  Thus it is the power of substance.

 

There are two realms: the world of ordinary things and the unworld of ontological things.  Up is up and down is down and never the twain shall meet.  It is the job of the philosopher – of the analytic tradition to which I belong – to assay an ordinary object into its constituent ontological pieces.  Disputes rage. After it's all done and the pieces are laid out, the ordinary person will look and wonder whatever happened to the ordinary object, because those things look like nothing from his worldly world.

 

In the ordinary world there are ordinary objects sitting largely unmoved waiting under the tilted sky of skewed otherness.  They seem to brood within themselves, slowly revealing all manner of internal seismic shifts.  It is as though they are all replying to the questioning darkness within.  It is the stuff of myth.  Myth is the stuff of the ordinary world and thus the angular torque of internal causation seems to be.  The one who has jumped up to the ontological realm sees nothing.  He fears myth.  He jerks away from the incessant metamorphoses.  He is rather charmed by the luminous stillness.  I am that.

 

I have here explained nothing, but I managed a few phrases that (I think) are strangely beautiful.  In a stilted analysis that is finally too obvious.  All without the substantial power found in banks.  Thus I wrote the object we call philosophy.

 

 

 

4174  Does structure exist?  That is to say, is it one of the ultimate categories of Being?  Which is to say that it is not reducible to any other category, such as relation or set or substance.  Yes, it is ultimate and, therefore, irreducible.  Think of structure as an ordered relation – aRb as different from bRa.  It is that ordering that is the "essence' of structure.  And Order is a mighty difficult ontological boy to catch.  Even in physics the ordering of time's arrow is so very adverse to fitting into the theories – physics, though, is not ontology.

 

In my ontology, sets likewise exist as irreducible to their elements.  And that is also a mind-bender.  Structure, sets, facts are all ultimate categories of Being and they are all different and difficult to think ontologically.  Nonetheless, there you are; the world is as it is.  We cannot whisk it away with any nominalistic gesture.  The bewilderment is fixed. 

 

So now the question is: are any of those three the same as substance?  Or as ordinary object.  Or as post-metaphysical "system of dark reference" quasi-emergent object in the unperceived houses of the Ur-world, material or otherwise?  No, differences are laid out, nuances slapped into place and the ontological jungle grows uncontrollably. 

 

We do seem to be able to think Order itself away from structure.  Or am I the only one who thinks he has such a philosophical intuition?  Ontological things seem easy for me to "see".  Is that because I don't wait for others to tell me what I should think and I am simply not afraid of being considered ontologically mad.  I am out here in the intellectual marshes.  The light is dim.  The bogs of God wait.  Articulation becomes, in time, inarticulate.  I swerve.  I am dreaming.  Thoughts careen through the windows of my room.  Ah Order, such an unordered thing.  You flee.  Arms and armature.  The Form of Form that I love.   The tool of existence.  Entanglement.

 

In order to have ultimate categories and first things, we must first have the thing of the First.  And so Order orders itself in order.  So easy, too easy, the vertigo of the morning breeze.   I walk out past the limits of speech.  Oblivion. 

 

 

 

4175  Consider the circumstance (or whatever you want to call it) that blue is different from green.  Or up from down.  Or this from that.  Or now from then.  Or and from or.  Your thoughts from you!  Think of any difference you want, qualitative, quantitative, categorical or illusory.  Think that x is different from y.  That that circumstance is neither x nor y and it is one thing, while x and y are two.  Try to think it.  It's easy.  Though close to the edge of what can be thought.  I fear maybe over the edge.

 

Both Bergmann and the Buddhists insist that difference doesn't exist.  There is, however, a difference in their insisting.  The Buddhists want to prove that because difference isn't all is one.  Bergmann wants to show that difference as an ontological entity isn't, and things differ because of their natures, a sort of internal relation.  Neither camp rests easy with their insisting.  Dream-falling over the edge.  Or perhaps they willfully or innocently walked or almost walked across Kant's critical line or they, in an un-Wittgensteinian fashion, tried to speak the unspeakable.  It seems to me they were both just doing philosophy.  That which finally can't be done without the grin of Eros and his οργη, the erotic blow-up.  It's great fun.

 

If the things that differ are different from the circumstance that they differ, do we need a nexus to join it all up?  Can we ground order in the circumstance that the things that differ are different from the circumstance that they differ.  Bergmann thinks we can.  In symbols, let (x,y) mean x is different from, other than, y.  Then the above sentence is (x,(x,y)).  And you may remember that that is the "definition" of order in mathematics.  That definition has never, I must say, made any sense to me.  Though it does point to a basic difference, otherness, right at the center of the ontological struggle.  It names the "first" in first philosophy.

 

If order and difference don't exist then philosophy is itself a latecomer and a mere remnant of human intellectual dalliance in the night.

 

 

 

4176  I am not a teacher.  I have nothing to teach you.  I am not an advisor.  I have no advice to offer.  I am not a good observer of life.  I have no observations to relate.  I have nothing to give you.  I write the gods.  I sing the ancient rite.  The sacrifice is quickly performed. I have nothing to teach you.  I am torn.  The ancient things leak out.  And deliquesce into the night.  I turn on my bed.  I write the words themselves. The never before.

 

I worry the meaning of the word "not".  Sufi twirling intoxicates me.  But so what, it has been done.  Not that.  There are so many meanings to "not".  They are a knot.  I know not.  A gnarl.  A snarl.  A knife is k-needed.  I knead my need.  My knees bend.  The breath comes.  Everything was done correctly and He came.  And I forget how.  I never knew.  He's ever new. And the dew glistens.

 

So that's all philosophy is.  A slightly pleasant thing.  Sublime ineptness.  It's been done.  Whole religions have been set up on the flat plains of his stomach.  Temples erected.  Or rather, profundities have been hidden in the obvious.  Obsession.  And the tight bow-string. 

 

Does it matter if Difference is an ontological entity – or not?  Can we get lost in contemplation of that?  Is that how we got here?  Is the Blank the good?  Is it just blank?  His face is blank as he looks at me.  The Buddha boy is here.  I am gone.

 

 

 

4177  Blog philosophy is very, very collegial.  Gatherings of all kinds and a flowing forth of journal entries for other eyes to read.  These young philosophers form a real community.  Their serious speculation, their manly Realism is a social thing, extremely.  And they are very polite to each other.  It is a civilized affair.  And as befits gentle conversation they adopt the tone of plain speech, probably because such artlessness seems to indicate seriousness and thoughtfulness.  They have all taken up the 20th century ideal of being mature adults.  No romantic flights to the speculative heights.  Only a nod toward the depths of the individual, whether animate or inanimate.  A serious tone is important.  It feels to me quintessentially academic.  Speculative Realism even likes to hook itself up with history, but that is another form of collegiality.  It is also protection against any bumps in the night it discovers in the dark under-doings of the real.  They are very sensible and prepared in their acknowledging what lies beyond the commonsense feel of the everyday.  They are all very proper young scholars, probably with funding.  And comfortably not obsessed with their philosophical task.

 

These sportive young intellectuals (and their mentors), these Bloggers write so much on the Internet that it's impossible to digest it all (if there is an all there), but I may not be too far off if I say that they are slyly attempting to speak, in a scholarly fashion, about Kant's Ding-an-sich, the Thing-in-itself.  The philosophically forbidden.  The problem they have is that this is the watery realm of the Sublime, the very thing that Romanticism and Decadence were so good at describing, and that fits so very badly into scholarly prose.  Still, maybe these young thinkers are really trying to tame that enfolding, frightening thing and their recourse to what is often a dry intellectualism is exactly the point.  But they wander so erratically and I think I know why

 

They usually have a philosophy of the deep object, the thrown-against.  In other words, the world, which may or may not be an object, consists of "isolated" individuals or struggling objects.  Each one reaches deep down into itself, but there are no real relations by which they connect with each other.  The ionic veil of the Internet doesn't help.  Thus the fact that they are so collegial is ironic.  Should I say that they are self-centered?  I shouldn't be so mean.  And by going in they to mean to go out, because they are all hooked up to the hyper-weave of Reality.  Oh well, we are all trying to find an escape from the hectic "outer" world.  We are all anxious and so very belated in the realm of thought.  These thinkers are concerned with themselves about many things.  Life is life.  The collegiality isn't real and they wander alone.

 

 

 

4178  To the Speculative Realists, diviners of the Unseen, of the Objects, vicars of the Vicarious Causes, handlers of the Specula, and the Tool - Peace.

 

I have an anti-natural aversion to dark, hidden things.  To inward, cavernous things. To secret, watery things.  Just as others are drawn to them.  Just as some others love to eat oysters on the half-shell. As you know, that is Nature, but I have a love of the open clearing of Transcendence.  And I have to fight those who want to get rid of transcendence so that deep nature might be guarded from its blinding "logic".

 

The literate among you will have already noticed that my book and my blog refer to the Boy, and not to the Female.  The difference, of course, is momentous.  To say that beyond or beneath the phenomena there are the Objects, the Mothers, is horrendous.  I do not say it is wrong to say that; in fact I think that it is a true description of this place.  And I want out!  Thus, with Plato and so many others, I look for another place. The place of light and freedom and naked appearance.  The lovers of the Goddess Nature balk and laugh that I should think such a thing possible.  But, I remind you, such is a great part of Western philosophy.  Its angels have always been boys and not girls.  And thus the lovers of Nature have always moved away from the otherworldly Church.  One's love makes demands.  But the Church today has lost its militant spirit and the Family and the Female have taken over.  This is all just historical fact.  Transcendence is so out of fashion.  The natural man and the deep places advance. And the East, with its yin and yang comfortably united in squalor is ascendant.  I demure.

 

 

 

4179  Physics is geometry pure and simple.  It looks for the geometrical structure of this place, this world, this universe.  Nothing more.  Metaphysics may look for other things.  It may look for Objects or Substance more basic than the geometrical forms.  Maybe they do exist, but it is of no concern to physics.  Maybe to the physicist, but not to his science.  Physics is geometry pure and simple.

 

Those Objects are unseen.  It has been usual for the person trained in Continental philosophy to think of the seen, the phenomena, as somehow dependent on mind, as the mind's creation.  But why think that?  The Forms of geometry and this world's facts being instantiations of geometry are not mind or mind dependent.  They are not the result of the mind's "relation" to the world.  They just are.  The mind observes with an observing that changes nothing nor creates anything.

 

Some may think that the forms of geometry and physics are "created" by the Objects.  It seems to me they aren't.  They just are.  I see no point to having Objects other than to satisfy our poetic, mythical, erotic, "metaphysical", looming spirit.  Which ain't beans.  And thus a philosophy of Objects is totally worthwhile and True, but maybe not true.  And somehow scary.  And not to my taste.  I have other plans for the evening.  And the morning.

 

 

 

4180  I write the boy.  The boy thinks.  He works to explain his ideas.  He succeeds easily and then he always fails to make others see, but so what?  The idea was strong and he felt the truth of it and only the movement of the idea in words was not quite there enough to cross over.  He joyfully waits for the next time, the next attempt, the next feel of having it so close.  Thinking is in him.  His form is in my writing.  Strength pervades the scene.  My skin crawls.  I work it.  And then the night.

 

Steal from me.  Take anything you want.  You have my attention.  I love the feel of your grabbing hand.  Don't worry if you understand these words correctly.  I hardly understand them myself.  I was writing of you, anyway.  You are the perfection of my thinking.  And as you lie so still at night I am still watching.  I fear our slight movements.

 

Thinking is violence and you are tearing up the universe with your thinking and I think I will keep my distance.  You are beautiful in your flaming rhythms.  I will try to understand you.  Perhaps you are only remembering what we both once saw. The appearance was blinding.  And now gone.  And so close in words.  I understand your questionableness exactly.  And the perfect paradox that is failure.  You will crawl back into existence.  That twinkle and that shadow of a smile.  I take notice again.  The Light!

 

 

 

4181  Martin Hagglund and Radical Atheism

 

Today philosophers are squirming every which way to get around the deathly stillness of immortality that is inherent in the Platonic Forms.  It's not new; Borges wrote in A History of Eternity: "The ideal universe to which Plotinus summons us is less intent on variety than on plenitude; it is a select repertory, tolerating neither repetition nor pleonasm: the motionless and terrible museum of the Platonic archetypes.  I do not know if mortal eyes ever saw it (outside of oracular vision or nightmare), or if the remote Greek who devised it ever made its acquaintance, but I sense something of the museum in it: still, monstrous, and classified … "    The religious has always had something creepy and contrary to life about it.  Only today, when religion has become a social thing has this been forgotten.  It has always been thus and has always been known.  And feared.  So now, those who think they have discovered something new and who think we all naturally want to escape from religion have written of the return of substance and objects, the singular and the individual.  This is the new nominalism that fears the unworldly Things of analytical Realism.  Nothing seems to change.

 

The problem is that this deathly stillness is also a part of the erotic.  They seem to never have read Freud's Beyond the Pleasure Principle.  There is a timeless lure in that nightmare. I remember being drawn by the frisson up my back when I saw the glossalalia in my Grandmother's pentecostal church.  And then went out in the stillness of the stars.

 

 

 

4182  The Object that Heidegger is obsessed with is the German language and even more so the Aryan roots of that language.  Many of us share the same obsession.  It's a magical game.  The connections are surprising.  The lure is unavoidable.  The wisdom gained is deep.  It is thinking itself.

 

 

 

4183  The socii, the followers, hover and flit around the beloved like moths around a candle.  It's an old, tired truth that will not go away.  We are here in the eternal Forms.  The hierarchical structure, love's prison.  The still, blank whiteness of the god and his chatty, catty lovers, fixed in place.  The ever old, the ever new, the ever again.  Even now.

 

The socii are one.  This Beloved, himself an eternal Form, shatters.  This is the very ancient Deconstruction itself.  Nothing changes.  And that there are those who want to destroy it all is itself ancient.  And ever new.

 

This is not a philosophy of persons and individuals, not of the singular, it is not a concern with community or organization or the body politic.  It is a philosophy of the one thing.  The Eternal Form.  The duende.  The too close.  The friend at night.  The explosion.  And the immortal nothing.  He is here.

 

Mirrors mirroring everywhere.  He primps.  We watch.  We die his looking away.  The transcendent is all there is.  A shudder.  A breaking spine.  The blanking out.  Shattered.  Lovers search forever.  The one thing.

 

 

 

4184  The poetry of the East is much more passionate that that of the West.  And I know that when I try to speak of love and passion as in the East I reveal myself to be a man the West.  My words always have something of logical, ontological analysis about them.  It is what I am.  Logic-love, logic-sex, ontological gymno-erotics.  The boy is mere ontological abstraction left sleeping in the Garden of Academos.  The Rose cut of passion is otherness and the regress of nexus.  I am lost between worlds.  I am at home in both and neither.  Neither.  The words come easy.  And as they leave me they slam into the cyber-sky.  Nothing.

 

 

 

4185  For Heidegger the notion of concealment/unconcealment is fundamental.  Verbergen and Entbergen.  The root is bhergh – to hide.  But it is also, I think, the Sanskrit bhag – to portion out.  It is probably the root of the Slavic word for God, Bog.  And it has meanings of fortune, allotment, and destiny.  All of these words are important for Heidegger.  Most importantly, for Heidegger, it is Being "hiding" in the regions of Being.  Or modes, or as-being.  Being divides; it parcels itself out.  That is its concealment.  A spy knows that if you want to hide something break it apart, scatter the pieces and wait for a time of laying them together again.  Of course, code words as to how and where are important.  Hints.  And as any Hindu mere boy knows the world was created when Prajapati was dismembered and the pieces scattered and grew into a world.  This god will, in time's completion, appear again as one.  We sing the unity and disunity.  The gods are hidden in their scattered pieces.  It seems that the tearing apart of the gods is a necessary thing and then the re-membering.  For man and the world.  Heidegger wanted to see Being whole again.  He wanted to see the return of the gods.  And he, like the early Christians, thought he would see this Great Event.  But Germany went even deeper into the breaking and now we wait also.  And we sing our hymns.

 

For us this expectation of the return of the gods is the rhythms of philosophical liturgy.  We write in a timed mode.  In that repeating, breaking, repeating form we begin to see the approach.  Writing, inspired writing, is metrical.  It has style, Gestalt, Form.  The continuous lies over the discontinuous.  The drone creates a high way.  Things long lost to each other lie with each other.  For a moment.  Until the End comes and the Beginning begins again.

 

Like Sanskritic philosophical writings, Heidegger's writing is strangely poetic – or it is nothing.  The German, Aryan Stimmung.  I help in the remembering, but I may be remembering a different god.

 

 

 

4186  I don't attend his philosophical church so Graham Harman doesn't pay much attention to me but I will, nonetheless, make a few comments about his definition of "realism" and "materialism".  He writes in his June 5 blog:

 

"But for me, realism isn’t realism unless it’s “R7″ realism (to use the term I coined when reviewing Braver’s outstanding A Thing of This World). This means: the relations between any two things have to be on the same ontological footing as the human-world relation. You can’t just say “sure, there might be/is a real world; I’m not Berkeley” and call that realism. It’s far too weak a way in which to confront the real. The real does more than just haunt human awareness as an ominous residue. The real has parts, and they interact with one another just as we interact with it."

 

"(anti-realism is) the assumption that the human-world relation is more basic than all other relations."

 

I take all that to mean that what is real is structured and it does not depend on the mind's "relation" to it.  The structure of mind being aware of a brook is no more basic than that of water flowing over rocks.   All of these structures are real and basic.  I agree. 

 

The philosophical question now becomes this:  consider these two structures – Sugar lies at the bottom of my cup of coffee – and – Snow covers the garden outside my window.  The first is true the second isn't.  The first is actual; the second is possible but not actual.  The first is a fact (structure) with actuality; the second is a fact (structure) with potentiality.  Those are good old Aristotelian words.  How does Graham Harman analyze these two facts or structures?   I would like to know.  Are actuality and potentiality entities that pervade facts or structures?  It seems to me they are.  As for Reality or The Real, with capital letters, that that is the One Absolute we all approach with our probing – I don't think there is such a thing.  The ground of a fact being true or real is not that it is a part of the Great Reality that is beyond us, but that it is pervaded by actuality.  We can go no farther than that.  It is brute.  It is striking.  It is alluring.

 

 

 

4187  I am sort of an inverted Sartre, or anti-Sartre, or mirrored-image of Sartre.  He is fatigued by the self-contradiction in all theologies, the self-defeat in all ethics, the simple self-destruction in all grand political attempts.  It is necessary.  This final impossibility at the heart of the dance of Being and Non-Being wryly convinces him that there is no God.  And since man's only desire is for God, Man is a useless passion.  Sartre is right; all philosophies fail, all ethics turn on man, all gods flee.  And man himself is crushed by thought.  It's inevitable.  But to me, being quite lucid about this strange confusion, this is the sign of the Presence of God; this is God.  God is an imp, a sprite, a dangerous fellow, a true lover who leaves in the morning on angel's wings just as you knew he would.  He's irresistible.  All thinking destroys itself. Eros grins.  Finally the philosophy of philosophical failure fails and … and what?  We go on.  God returns, your hand burns, your head turns, pleasure all round.

"And if he promises, "I will come in another moment," all his promises are but cunning to beguile you.  He possesses a flaming breath, by enchantment and wizardry knotting the water and tying up the air."   Rumi

 

 

 

4188  Philosophy is phenomenology.  It speaks of what it sees with its philosophical seeing.  That does not mean that all that it sees comes back to that act seeing.  That is to say, intentionality is not the fundamental relation that all other relations are derived from.  (I use the word "relation" loosely.)  There are those who think that phenomenological philosophy is obsessed with intentionality and sees only that everywhere it looks.  There are those who, fearing idealism, would like to substitute an obsession with causality for that and have a speculative (ie. non-phenomenological) realism.  As I (philosophically) see it neither intentionality nor causality are fundamental.  Being is replete with many different connectors, nexus, relations, or what-have-you.  For example the simple word "and" names one - or maybe two.  All are "equal".  All have full existence, there not being such a thing as greater or lesser existence.  And I see them directly.  I see them in the fullness of their existence.  Likewise, I see the abstract form of connector-ness.  I see it directly.  And on and on.  There is no unseen anything in philosophy.  The unseen belongs to the everyday and science. 

 

There are those who are impressed with Man's finitude. This is the sign of the modern men.  They are the humble.  We have being-in-the-world existence.  We are submerged and drowning.  The Whole is ever beyond us.  Nonetheless, we have learned to thrive on finitude and to take it as a call for caring.  We know only each other.  There is no transcendent anything.  We never really wanted it anyway.  Life as finite is real life; we are joyful.  Infinity is scary.  For us everything comes back to our finite being in the world.  After finitude there are only the things that go bump in the night and the dark causes.  We will look at this Medusa only in a specula.  Then Euripides is our philosopher. 

 

 

 

4189  Victor Klemperer pointed out to me (perhaps he got it from Tacitus) that the fault of the Germans was grenzenlosigkeit, boundlessness.  They soar upward and then they fall correspondingly far.  They are too damn thorough and they ruin themselves.  For example, many peoples have been anti-Semitic; it's a nasty European state of mind that has been around forever.  It's like being anti-gay.  The Germans, however, went overboard.  They went all the way to the final solution.  As long as the disease of thoroughness does not come, we can manage.  It is the same with their philosophy.  A German philosophy book, and that of their French imitators, is numbingly thorough.  Their mind soars and then it ruins itself.  Take Deleuze, he probably has a good idea, but, my God, he kills it in extreme explanation.  And those young graduate students today who try to follow him, they are contracting the same sickness.  They are killing philosophy.  Such grundliche Grenzenlosigkeit.  Such ruination.  It is not necessary.  Style before thoroughness!

 

 

 

4190  Graham Harman has given us a very pleasant read in Technology, Objects and Things in Heidegger.  He has clearly and with a sense of finality brought to light the hypostatic idea of Zuhandenheit in Sein und Zeit.  Surprisingly, it greatly reminds me of The Essentials of Logic by Bosanquet.  Both are available as PDF online.  These two books both try to get beyond the apparent to the hidden wholeness that lies ever beyond.  And in that they both run counter to the Greek spirit that has animated philosophy for so long.  I too have been taken by that spirit of light and neither of those writers is to my taste; thus, it is amazing to me that they have each written with such clarity, a very Greek ideal. 

 

 

 

4191  Consider a twinkling star.  Is that a twinkling star because we (a herd of conscious minds) saw (or sensed) a little point of light in a complex arrangement with other little points of light and this and that and another thing (embedded in a long history of this that and many other things) and we united the concepts of starness and twinklingness on it, which we somehow came up with after this that ... and all the rest of it.  OR is it a twinkling star because it is a twinkling star.  That is to say it is an it and it has with the nexus of having the form of twinkling star which is a universal form that other things that are an it share – all irrespective of whether or not we see it?  The second alternative is the correct answer.  Don't forget it for the test.

 

 

 

4192  German Grenzenlosigkeit, boundlessness, and durch-und-durchlichkeit is also my unmenchlichkeit, my inhuman way.  Look at all the elements in my fundamental ontology.  It's a jungle or slum or like my room.  Most writers in philosophy have individuals, maybe qualities and (begrudgingly) some sort of similarity relation that creates family overlappings.  All the rest is free lunch.  I have (are you ready for this?):

 

Bare particulars (including critical particulars, multi-partite particulars, etc.), universals (including relations and propositions), nexus of many kinds to tie particular to universal, element to set, thought to object, words to meaning, sets (including the null set), classes, circumstances like x is other than y, and identity, thoughts, actuality, potentiality, logical quantifiers, numbers, negation, particularity, universality, hylomorphic diads such as "this universal" and the particularity of a particular, and on and on.  All of these are necessary if we are not going to fall into idealism and nihilism.  And then there are the Transcendentals like Beauty, the Good, Truth, Sameness, Difference, Being, Non-Being.  Also error, evil, desire, rejection, holiness, and more and more.  It all exists and particulars here participate in them. But they also exist unparticipated.  It's a mad house – just like real life.  Being bulges.  It is swelteringly hot. Soon Grenzenlosigkeit.  And he goes mad.  Juggling on the shoulders of a tightrope walker.  He falls.  Nietzsche never knew.

 

And facts; there exist so many different kinds of facts.  There are ordinary facts such as my watch is slow, and general facts as all watches run slow at times, and math facts as seven is a prime number, and logical facts as if a is red then it is not not red, and ontological facts as red is a color and the generic universal named color exists.  And transcendental facts as existence itself exists (or not).  And red and its existence are two things, not one, or not.  In Buddhist contemplative fashion the mind breaks and divine beings leak in.  The daimon, the duende, the genius, the familiar, the double, the Imp, the biting teeth take their place to receive your gleeful applause.  The curtain has lifted.  This is opening night. Being looks radiant as always.

 

You may think of all this as the Logos.  Ah yes, the Logos, bling on the cheek on our pert and larkish god.  Religendum est.  Arte somnum initus est.  Avolat celeriter.

 

The contemplation of Being becomes a wild thing.  The human is left far behind.  The gods rumble.  I shake the box.  The merely human was always a temporary thing.   We move on of necessity.

 

 

 

4193  Graham Harman and I share a love of Style, and we both see it as philosophically important.  Just which style is not now important.  He especially likes allusion because it can serve to "capture" the Object.  Why not? I like allusion too.  He likes Gibbon for this and that reason, but I recommend to him John Milton, the all-time master of allusion.

 

I suppose I use allusion. I am always thinking of something my words are referring to without mentioning that directly.  And of course there is the erotic allusion, which, with me, is probably too easy to figure out.  But there is also meter in the sense of phrasal gradation and cadence.  That timing is itself an allusion.  Maybe to the substance of the world.  Or it is that.

 

 

 

4194  I do religious writing, that is to say, my writings, like the Bible, are more like children's literature than that of the moderate, mature adult.  Things are wildly incommensurable.  Minute gestures have eternal being.  Consequences are extreme and calculated. Happenings are cruel.  The beings of children's literature are more like gods than man and woman and the appearings are the appearings of gods.  The devastation of forever looms. Like the Bible, this is not for the grown-up mind.  I write the theomorphic, not the anthropomorphic.  This is apocalypse.  This is Platonism.  Nor do I write medieval fantasy, where the great concern is with respect and honor between man and man and man and woman, who succumb only to the cruelty of nature, not an impish and willful God. 

 

 

 

4195  I am sitting on my chair in my room and I look across to the other room and I see a book lying on a table.  And there are all kinds of sensa also present.  So how to I ontologically analyze my seeing a book on a table across the way?  What am I really seeing? What is my seeing really?  Is my seeing really a mass of sensa that are internal to me.  Is that book and table and traversing space that I think I see really a mass of sensa internal to me?  Is all that a deputy or vicar or image of some great event outside me?  No, my perceiving is a perceiving, not a sensing.  I perceive the book and the table and the intervening space directly without any stand-in inside of me arising from whatever it is I supposedly do not directly see.  The book and the table and the space are real as is my perceiving.  And I perceive that they are a book and a table and that the book is on the table and that they are across the way. The brain for all that is irrelevant.  As for the sensa that may or may not be there, they are also irrelevant, but if they are there I sense them also directly; they are, however, not the distant book. I see the book on the table unmediated.  This is direct realism.

 

 

 

4196  Anytime there is a division, a cut, between ontological things there is what Graham Harman calls allure.  He has called our attention to many of these cuts, but there are many more.  It is the job of analysis to find them.  It's a lovely word and it means here pretty much what it always means.  We attend to one thing and we are drawn across an uncrossable divide to another thing.  Just as you are drawn to a beauty you can never have.  The more inaccessible it is the more alluring it is.  And yet you have it in the perfection of you desire.  Intensity shatters difference.  Oblivion.

 

Here is the problem.  To analyze, to cut, is the Dionysian moment.  To articulate them into one smooth being is Apollonian.  As you can see there is a further cut right there.  Writing philosophy is this impossible unity of cut and oneness.  It is like the Holy Trinity and the Incarnation which makes the young devotee bleed.  The only thing left to do is dance and make our spirit laugh.  It's a wonder.

 

 

 

4197  If your ontology does not have relations that are external to the relata, a and b, you cannot make up for it by having a quasi-set (ab).  For example, if your lamp is on a table, you cannot account for that relation by means of a mental bringing together of the sensual properties of lamp and table.  You must have a relation between the two objects.  Not a uniting of their properties in you mind.  Again, aRb is not (ab). 

 

In symbols:  (Ex)(Ey)(F(x)&G(y)&(xRy))  this cannot be changed into (Ex)(Ey)(F(x)&G(y)&(FG)). 

 

 

 

4198  There is a debate in realist circles about whether or not the bare particular itself appears inside an act of knowing.  Or perhaps whether or not the continuant, the underlying substance, can be directly known.  Many have assumed that we only know sensual representatives of the unseen object.  Just what it is we directly apprehend is an open question. 

 

Inside every real object there is a sensual object that is a representation of another object and it is between these that that causation occurs when the firewall or the buffering breaks and a new object is created.

 

Central to his philosophy is the allure of, or between, sensual object, the deputy of the real object, and real object.  The sensual object is always inside another real object.  Apparently all real objects are intentional structures.  It seems that every real object would have a sensual vicar inside every other real object.  Or every real object would contain a vicar of the whole world. 

 

 

 

4199  A severed part is ghostly.  The parts present are as though unreal or merely ontological.  An object analyzed is brought out of the darkness of the ordinary.  To be brought to light is to kill it.  To be Apollonian and clearly seen is to be still and beyond life.  Technology, which is pure presence, is deadly and intense.  The part alludes.  The part is greater than the whole. 

 

The Object is the everydayness of things, the Kierkegaardian and Heideggerian horror. It is Hades. It is the opposite of the Light.  But it is there and philosophy must contend with it.  It is biological ooze; it is birth and death; it is miasma. 

 

 

 

4200  Here, I would like to make an attempt at using the Harman-Heidegger philosophy to characterize my own philosophy.  Central to their thinking is the notion of the Object or Zuhandenheit.  For Harman there is Allure and for Heidegger there is Alltaglichkeit.  Anyway, one of the main features of my philosophy is the distinction between the ordinary object and the ontological thing.  The first, Harman's object, really doesn't belong in philosophy.  I break it.  It still hovers just outside as the object of my ontological attack.  And the result is Vorhandenheit.  Shattered.  Pieces.  Ghostly things of Being.  The ordinariness of life and my absorption in it are gone.  Now we are in a dangerous place.  I think Harman would agree.  But, at least for me, the cut off ontological pieces have a certain allure.  They speak of something else.  This is the realm of Beauty.  Or is it sublime destruction?  I think of boys playing on abandoned machines.  Maybe that breaker of syntax, Emily Dickenson.  Maybe Burrough's cut-up style.  A hand, just a hand, lying useless.  The wind. 

 

The true precursor of Heidegger and probably Harman is Kierkegaard, who, in the Instant of the Absolute Paradox, finds the union of the ordinary and the divine.  It is amazing that a graduate student in the most mind-bending dullness of thesis writing works so hard to capture the transcendent or its absence.  The pathos of his attempt is crushing.  And that is ordinary.  In that interior moment of sincere encounter.  He finally becomes useful and helpful for society.

 

I, however, prefer my short pieces that allude without really saying much.  Here the gods are pieces of the human.  It is why I love grammar books instead of conversation.  The cutting reveals the shine on the knife's edge.

 

Think of the Platonic Forms, they are a less that is a more.  Think of the Form of the Gaze, an almost nothing that contains more than everything.  Think of Truth, Flight, a Kiss, Order.  The almost empty Forms that send a shudder through the mind if we dwell on them.  Pieces that lure us on to Nowhere.  Piercingly lovely.  Think of how your ordinary love is sometimes just that.  The Instant is also there.  That nothing of an instant.

 

 

 

4201  The Speculative or Object-oriented Realists are trying so very hard to overcome epistemology or human-centered philosophy and do ontology instead.  Their difficulty is that they are tying to do something Bertrand Russell thought impossible. They are trying to do it without external relations.  I'll give them a hand, though I too think it can't be done.  I think they have been using a structure built around a type of intentionality.  It goes like this:

 

I as a real object "relate" to my radio, not through any kind of relation between me and the radio, but by means of a radio image that is in me.  That image is "of" or even "from" the radio, but that is unimportant now.  That image or deputy or vicar of the radio itself breaks alluringly into the image and the essential quality of radio. Thus in me there is the something x is Rad.  Rad(x).  The fact that it divides and there is a bare x, a bare particular seems to say that there is something beyond.  So there is something beyond which I as a real thing cannot get at, but which lures me on. I am trapped in myself.  I know only what is in me.  There is no relation outward that I might travel on.  But there doesn't have to be if I can do everything in the world by remote control. 

 

Now the radio, which is our real goal.  What is it?  Well, it, like me, has no relations to the outside so it "relates" to the other objects somewhat as I did to it, ie. through deputies or vicars.  Consider the classical idea of internal relations.  Lets say a is heavier than b.  What is it that grounds that relation?  If it is not the relation itself then it has to be the objects themselves coming together. Therefore instead of relation H we have (ab).  The "relation" H is simply an abbreviation for the conjunction of the natures of these two things.  It is in the nature of one to be heavier than the other. No need for a relation at all only a coming together of natures.  So my radio " relates" to the table it is sitting on by means of an image or deputy or vicar of the wall being inside it.  Thus radio and table nature seriously encountering each other inside the radio – and also – wall and radio nature no less together inside wall.  And also (this is interesting) that nature is probably going to have to break apart into itself and the nature.  The Allurement will also be here. That's it.  It's rather easy.  It also doesn't work.  There are no vicars or deputies.  Aristotle's third man argument destroys themt as do so many other objections.  It would be much easier simply to have external relations.  But then the poetry of isolated beings would be lost.  What to do?

 

Some will object that I have told this story in too slap-dash a fashion.  That I need to flesh it out, nuance it up, be more thorough.  I say, go ahead.  You will get no closer to your goal of explaining this impossible idea.  You might, however, come up with some pretty techno-analytic poetry on the way, which is always fun.  Even I will probably go back and fruitlessly amend this post.  Finally, no philosophy succeeds and we make the attempt for the sheer pleasure of it.

 

 

 

4202 There is the object seen and the object unseen.  Unseen, it is in an ambiguous state, having neither this property nor that. Nothing definite.  Looked at, it randomly becomes this or that. This is the lesson of quantum physics.  One could also say that, unseen, the object has both this and that property, that it is in many worlds with each, and that upon being seen it randomly becomes of one world, having one definite property. 

 

This view brings indefiniteness, potentiality and randomness into the world.  And it brings the states of being seen and unseen.  I suppose that it is also totally random whether an object is seen or unseen.  And until that being seen is seen it is in a state of being indefinite.  In other words, all these things pile together and collapse onto each other.  Where and when was the initial act of seeing that brought order and definiteness into existence?  And who?

 

 

It's pathetic and embarrassing to watch a young academic trying to dance.  So stiff, so worried, so disoriented.  It is sad watching a graceful young beauty trying to think and speak in academics. Each has the gracelessness of the other.  Each dies the other's death.  Each wants to be loved by the other.  Each becomes a disturbance.  

 

This is the classic difference between the high Protestant clergy and the theater boys.  Between banker and artist.  Between community pillar and the adventurer into the new.  The young academic so badly wants to be the second an becomes the first. The academic and the street boy.  Each dies the other's death.

 

Why is it that charm and beauty always belong to the lower classes, the outcast, the unattended?  There it is real, not purchased.  There is will break your heart.  Each is dead to the other.

 

 

There is the academic who works hard to be worthy of his teachers, both living and dead.  Who feels their presence maybe too much.  Who is looking for his own way but who is too heavily burdened by THEM.  Who sighs and dies.

There is the writer of philosophy who is inspired only and who never works.  The others speak through him.  He writes words down as would a secretary.  He goes out at night and dances.  He himself is a gift of the gods to us the bewildered.  He grows old and dies, always wondering what it was all about.  The former is sure that the latter has never existed.  Perhaps not.  Perhaps philosophy as one thing isn't.  and never was.

 

Perhaps the former becomes the latter in special devastating moments when all is lost.  And the plain truth is spoken.  And written down.  And read.  Maybe never read.

 

Are you afraid to look and see which one you are today?

 

 

 

4203  It's pathetic and embarrassing to watch a young academic trying to dance.  So stiff, so worried, so disoriented.  It is sad watching a graceful young beauty trying to think and speak in academics.  Each has the gracelessness of the other.  Each dies the other's death.  Each wants to be loved by the other.  Each becomes a disturbance.  

 

This is the classic difference between the high Protestant clergy and the theater boys.  Between banker and artist.  Between community pillar and the adventurer into the new.  The young academic so badly wants to be the second an becomes the first.  The academic and the street boy.  Each dies the other's death.

 

Why is it that charm and beauty always belong to the lower classes, the outcast, the unattended?  There it is real, not purchased.  There is will break your heart.  Each is dead to the other.

 

 

There is the academic who works hard to be worthy of his teachers, both living and dead.  Who feels their presence maybe too much.  Who is looking for his own way but who is too heavily burdened by THEM.  Who sighs and dies.

 

There is the writer of philosophy who is inspired only and who never works.  The others speak through him.  He writes words down as would a secretary.  He goes out at night and dances.  He himself is a gift of the gods to us the bewildered.  He grows old and dies, always wondering what it was all about.  The former is sure that the latter has never existed.  Perhaps not.  Perhaps philosophy as one thing isn't.  and never was.

 

Perhaps the former becomes the latter in special devastating moments when all is lost.  And the plain truth is spoken.  And written down.  And read.  Maybe never read.

 

 

 

4204  There is the academic who works hard to be worthy of his teachers, both living and dead.  Who feels their presence maybe too much.  Who is looking for his own way but who is too heavily burdened.  Who sighs and dies.

 

 

 

4205  Are Speculative Realists positivists?  Yes, in the sense that they don't spend any intellectual time, (believe in?) asking the traditional philosophical questions about the existence of universals, bare particulars, connectors, ideas, Nothingness, actuality, sets, or entities such as existence itself, otherness, sameness and so on.  No, in the sense that they don’t stick to any verification principle when speculating about the deep structure of objects.  Because I am a traditionalist concerning these questions, I tend to think that these people aren't philosophers at all, only speculative scientists.  But who am I to define what and what isn't philosophy?  Some people even speak of their philosophy of selling used cars.

 

Still, if they aren't philosophers, are such nominalistic fellow-travelers like Hume, Malebranche, Occam etc. not philosophers?  The latter did ask the traditional questions and tried to answer in the negative, not dismiss them with a glance at something else.  The only thing that keeps the Speculative Realist in the philosopher's fold, as far as I can tell, is their "feel" for the real.  It's rather vague and unattended to analytically, but their focused feel for the real is real.  That is philosophy and it isn't positivism, except sort of, because they rail and will not fail to cop a feel behind the veil.

 

The positivists of old were battling theology and unscience.  Today's positivists are battling the Anglo-analysts who, in their far analyses, reach something that threatens to be theology and unscience, if not just too difficult for the poor student just trying to make his way across the academic mine field.  He finds another and they hold hands.

 

 

 

4206  An ordinary object like this curtain doesn't seem very philosophical, and it isn't.  It has all kinds of forces pushing on it and it is pushing back, which doesn't seem very philosophical, and it isn't.  The philosophical is entirely different.  Only when you contemplate taking the curtain apart into its ontological pieces are you entering into philosophy.  You may turn back.  The ordinary and its helpmate for seeing in the dark, science, are safe places away from the deadly knives of ontological analysis.  Unless you have a liking for human sacrifice.  A craving, the ευχαρισμα.

 

 

 

4207  Philosophers today accuse each other of not respecting the human, quite aside from not respecting the eco-system.  The human is precious.  Ho anthropos is god.  Gaia is the mother.  Together they stand against the life-suffocating Sky-cult.  The authoritarian Sky.  The mind-tamer.  The form-framer.  The hammer.

 

Like Satan we have been cast out of heaven and now find ourselves in a constricted place, a finite place, a cavernous prison.  We will now worship the crumbling dirt beneath us, the wet kisses of decay, the seeping waters.  We will have the joy of spiders.  We cannot now reach the sky again.

 

We will now learn to love death as the giver of life.  Because we are gods and not from here we will turn failure into a glorious success.  We will hold each other and only privately remember in the ruined temple of the fallen Self.  And contemplate the mange eating us.  Oh, broken wings. 

 

The accusations roll and the attempt to love.  But our breath, our theomorphic nature will not go away.  The rhythms resound.

 

 

 

4208  When Satan fell in Paradise Lost, he fell into pure Cartesian Extension.  Everything was broken apart.  Everything was analyzed.  Distance ruled.  This Vastness. This great flat plane covered up everything and we could find nothing.  Those of us who grew up on the Prairie understand.  We have been fighting this Miltonian Hell all our lives.  And the wind that comes from the far nowhere and does not stay.  We make do.  The true precursor of Graham Harman is the great rectangular writing on the fields of Iowa.  A sometimes lonely, hellish story.  He will overcome that with the inward-falling object.  I suspect he swerved into his solitary room and thought.  Into a book and dreamed.  Into himself, and he always feared the great expanse outside his window; so he shut it.  The Writing on the Prairie was tamed inside this lonely, but lovely, vision within.  I understand exactly.  And the need to be as systematic as the straight lines out there under the lingering moon.  Surely the trees and the stranded car felt the same thing.

 

 

 

4209  The romance of Master GH - For the boy, the horrible expanse has invaded and the great ease of the unanalyzed life has become impossible; he lives with shunting ideas.  He deviates and breaks; the straight line cuts deep and orders things as in a nightmare and by force it reflects that thing outthere outthere always outthere. He is stopped in his tracks by the geometrical wind on the plain. He feels the looking of the Extension ever beyond.  He's on the Cartesian grid, the floor of hell, on the ground, in the itch, his ear listing, standing tall in the silk of night.  Allusions come.  He swerves.  The clinamen knows.  He listens to the far places.

 

The inside is the outside is the inside.  The breaking, the buffering, the serious encounter.  In the isolated places.  No one sees.  The swelling seas of the Real rise and fall over the ever-still slant of the prairie.  Those who know know.  In the dark, he sleeps with the beyond.  The expanse lies on him.  He becomes sure of the real.  He will not coyly deny the dualism.

 

In time he read Heidegger and learned from the Europeans.  He tried to think in terms of the Organized Eco-system, where all things function harmoniously, the life world, the Real.  He wanted to see technical analysis as the breaking evil.  And a broken piece of technology as an allusion to the living thing beyond.  But the thinking didn't work.  He isn't Heideggerian at all.  He is Milton and Des Carte.  And Kierkegaard's union of ordinary object and the divine.  That is to say his vision is the union of the object and the expanse beyond, the object and the Real.  A boy lying on the vast plain under the mounting sky, trying to think.  All objects around him suffer that.  There is no unified eco-system there.  Just the Real everywhere.  Somehow to be loved.

 

 

 

4210  I am not a scholar, these are the people who work hard to bring things into order, they must be clear-sighted, not the benighted by Eros.  Eors has me in thrall and all that.  The scholar will roll his eyes and wonder why he has to analyze such a "precious dear", such a "heavenly being".  Why can't all just till the ground, line after line, till dusk, then sleep?

 

The beginning scholar reads about divine madness in Plato and wonders.  Should he too seek inspiration?  Or is it merely a post-adolescent trick to get the work done fast, as his teachers say?  The thought of walking the street as a forlorn lover is too much and he gets back to work.

 

I have walked the streets.  Many streets.  I have seen beauty beyond beauty.  I have descended below the streets.  I am not a scholar.  The scholars look away.  I return to walking.

 

 

 

4211  In 1911 Bertrand Russell wrote, "The fundamental doctrine in the realistic position, as I understand it, is the doctrine that relations are 'external'."  He explains this as meaning

 

  1. relatedness does not imply any corresponding complexity in the relata,
  2. any given entity is a constituent of many different complexes.

 

I want to look at the second one.  It points to something that, not only has been a bewilderment in philosophy for a very long time, but is something that may destroy it altogether.  Or at least bring it to a halt right outside the limits of understanding.  Consider this:

 

My coffee is hot.  Then it's cold.  That is an ontological puzzle of the first rank.  A rascal of a problem.  In the end I will not be able to ontologically analyze it.  Philosophy will fail.

 

In symbols it is H(a) and C(a).  "any given entity is a constituent of many different complexes."  I will assume, reasonably I think, that to be hot is not to be cold.  Contraries, if not contradictions.  At one moment  ~C(a)  and then ~H(a).   H(a) and ~H(a).  A contradiction!   But you may not believe that because, you may think, what looks like the very same a in each are really two a's.  So, here at least, it is not the case that "any given entity is a constituent of many different complexes."  Or if it is then the one a is "at" two different moments.   Then a is at moment t1 and a is at moment t2.  Ignoring the ontological question of there maybe not being such things as moments, we are here at a contradiction again.  Should be say that a is a moment t1 at one moment and t2 at another?  Will infinite regress fall in … or what?  Perhaps the only way out is to deny Russell's statement that " any given entity is a constituent of many different complexes."  Then according to Russell we have lost realism.

 

Realism does seem to want to say that one and the same entity abides through change of any kind.  But then how do we avoid ultimate contradiction? Is each complexity before our mind's eye an entirely different individual?  Is everything just constant difference?  Can we not step into the same river twice?  Is the mantra Panta Rei the way to enlightenment?  Is it all phenomenal, breezy nothing?

 

Countless other examples abound.  A penny is both round and oval.  A stick is both long and short.  If it all depends on perspective and "in relation to what", then idealism wins the game for sure, and the thing as it is in itself is totally lost.  Or is there God's vision which is not from any perspective at all or from all perspectives (as in medieval paintings)?  Or is there a knowing of the Whole that is unrelated (because there is nothing else) and thus absolute?  What is the thing in-itself?  Or is that question beyond the critical divide for the philosopher?  And maybe meaningless. Realism seems stuck.  It is lost because it so badly wants to cling to the "law" of non-contradiction and the thing-in-itself away from thought, continuing through change.  What to do?  One way may be to think of Time as the unchanging substance of the thing.  But that surely just poetry and for some of us it feels bad.  I am a realist, and I will not give it up, because idealism leads where I do not want to go – into a self-imprisoned consciousness.   

 

Or a self impaled on the great Space-time continuum where the transfinite random jolts and the Dedekind Cuts.  But then I suppose I could do what the continentals do and make it complicated indeed with the complication complicating itself until the illusion of an answer appears.

 

I choose rather the orgasmic explosion of ontological mischief.  A lover dreams alone longing to go out and find the real, the one thing.  A rebellious youth merely longs for a lock on his door so he can gently talk through the endless night with his friends.

 

One philosophy is desire for the one thing; the other is a longing for freedom from the one thing and its desire.  Both become entangled.

 

 

 

4212  Bergmann quotes Max Beerbohm at the beginning of Realism: "How I wish I could keep up with the leaders of modern thought as they pass by into oblivion."  This applies, of course, to some aspects of philosophy just as it does to the recording industry and to clothes fashion and cars and a multitude other parts of our culture.  It's part of what young people are all about.  Up to date!  What is the next new thing?!  Who's up; who's down?  It's instinctively a part of who we are.  But it's not all.  It's as in physics where you have a few stable particles – the electron, the proton, the neutron and others – and then around then you have a swarm of virtual particles popping rapidly in and out of existence.  At the center sits the god and around him clamor his entourage.  It's fun!  Until the entourage thinks it's the god – The Body of the Entourage – and a sort of plain democracy of idiots takes over.

 

Take Spinoza, he is admired by many young thinkers today.  He wrote in a very rigorous manner with only a few elements. His admirers write endlessly about him and not only never mention those elements, except off-handedly, but puff him up into a fashion creature of thought.  What to do?  It's what young people do.  When the clamor dies down and the beautiful ones go home, Spinoza will still be there in his plainness and his power.

 

 

 

4212  Non-philosophy is not a terrorist organization that overturns its opponent; so insists Laruelle.  Philosophy is.  And so Non-philosophy terrorizes philosophy and attempts to overturn it.  It befriends only to betray.  It refuses to do evil, it is misunderstood, it is abused and becomes abject in the philosopher's eyes.  It thus achieves saintliness.  By refusing Transcendence and its God it was merely looking for the Good.  By cataloguing philosophy's sins of decision it was not betraying philosophy but creating solid ground for it to stand on.  It was betraying philosophy.  And then to prove and approve its ways it laid out its program in magnificent syntactical structures all of which revealed Magnificent Syntactical Structure.  Being, articulating itself into bewilderment, hangs on the invisible thread of paradox.  And disappears.

 

 

 

4213  Nietzsche is fashionable today because, just like today's fashion conscious young, he was worried about his public appearance.  The young feel it and recognize one of their own.  And thus in a great beautiful profusion of polite megalomania they all set out on life and soon crash.  The gods rumble.  The lovers clamor.  Hearts break.  Nothing much is accomplished – except the beauty of life.  And the next generation will pick up the fallen flag and set it up once more on the plain of glory.  The battle for attention will rage.  And they will die again in horrid decadence.  It's the ancient spirit in us. The god does return.  And leaves.  And we wait.  Philosophy remains in place.

 

 

 

4214  Everything that waits to be said in philosophy can be said in a handful of little Anglo-Saxon words.  Perhaps a couple of Latin names for a particularly delicate abstraction and you have it.  The syntax need only be the simplest.  Then there is power to the writing.  Nonetheless, it's fine to digress into more decorative language once in a while.  The heart does, at times, long for a flurry of complexity.  It's fun.  That is philosophy.  It's an ancient thing and we will repeat the past with pleasure.  And like a pool hall boy putting a little English on his ball with his magical stick we make the words go where they may not have wanted.  Life's a surprise and we need to escape its clutches.

 

 

 

4215  Continental philosophy tries so hard to create a place for man in world, at home with the girl of his dreams, falling peacefully into her immanence.  It is tired, sick and tired, of hard transcendence.  It wants reason to be reasonableness.  It wants sensa to be sensible.  It wants the other to not be so other.  Being should fit what man is, and not demand that he become as the angels. He is tired of the angels.  He wants a home, a job, and a pleasant death.  And the young philosophers insist on bringing their girlfriends to the discussion. Things get mighty complicated trying to run away from the angels.

 

The new motto is not: to the thing itself.  It is: away with philosophy, now non-philosophy.  We want the eternal problems solved here and now.  Give us the perfect sleep of radical immanence.  And great profuse word-displays that will numb the mind into oblivion. 

 

 

 

4216  "Non-philosophy relies upon a highly technical, abstract, and counter-intuitive vocabulary, whose terms are almost always defined in relation to one another. This makes it nearly impossible for the uninitiated to get the hang of it, barring total dedication and immersion." -  from The Dictionary of Non-philosophy.

 

The radical immanence of non-philosophy is one of total immersion and dedication, by the initiated, into its own highly technical, abstract, and counter-intuitive vocabulary, whose terms are almost always defined in relation to one another. 

 

It speaks of the Real, as opposed to all philosophical transcendence, and means just the use of the word "Real" that is immanent in that wonderful vocabulary.  The only "real" thing for non-philosophy is non-philosophy.  Non-philosophy writes itself into a immanent madness.  Its writers are very impressive in their ability to manipulate all that jargon.  It's like poetry.  Like decadent poetry, finally apotropaic.  What are they wanting to turn us away from?  What daimon become demon have they seen?  I think they have seen The Lady of Romanticism, a frightful thing indeed.  Non-philosophy is the swift moving mare of the night.  Such elegant writing galloping headlong toward … Magic.

 

Non-philosoophy is akin to non-concptualizing Buddhism.  It wants the One, the Real, as it is prior to all conceptualizing about it or even mentioning that it is or is prior to something.  Non-philosophy thinks philosophers make concepts and then apply them, generating an object-concept duality.  No, the realist sees a duality that is already out there and it is particular-Form, not that object-concept whatever it is. 

 

Non-philosophy wants the one thing prior to the philosopher's dividing it into subject and predicate.  Radical immanence is radical nominalism. 

 

 

 

4217  I like to have my say about a philosophy I see on the internet or catch sight of in a used book.  I always silently hear the complaint that I have misunderstood and misinterpreted the matter entirely.  That I have presented a corruption of the original.  I do hope I have, because just as one little strand of genetic material is corrupted and voilà, we see a new species, so I move on into the new.  Maybe it is viable, maybe not.  I often catch sight of the Beauty that hangs around the corners of far thought.  Or philosophy is nothing.

 

 

 

4218  Because the nexus was absent the world fell apart.  Abstract thought never went out with beauty; it seemed to know nothing of it or of desire or it was afraid to reveal its secret longing, its dream.  A most pernicious dualism.  But a proper dualism that doesn't count as one for the abstractionists.  And the beauties couldn't get the hang of difficult thought.  Or maybe it was only a few that ever could put the two together.  Whatever the case, the world is made lame.  And philosophy hobbles toward home, not knowing where it is. 

 

Which is the road by which I came?  I would return, for it likes me not here;

One moment's absence from the Beloved's lane is unlawful according to the doctrine of lovers.

If only in all the village there is someone – by Allah, a sign would be completely sufficient.

How shall the finch escape?  For even the simurgh is footfast in this stout snare.

My heart, do not come wandering in this direction; sit there, for it is a pleasant station.

Choose the dessert which augments life, seek that wine which is full-bodied;

The rest is all scent and image and color, the rest is all war and shame and opprobrium;

Be silent, and sit down, for you are drunk, and this is the edge of the roof.

 

 

 

4219  Philosophy is terror.  I have written so many times.  It is a constant theme of mine.  It is terror because it is the presence of a god.  A god is that thing which makes your hair stand on end.  Horripilation.  A shudder up your back.  A stark, wide-eyed looking at nothing.  The moment of coming undone.  An end arriving.

 

 

 

The Successful Philosopher

 

4220  If you are going to come out ahead in this most fascinating game you are just simply going to have to pay attention to the basic rules of product marketing and development.  Your customer (aka. your reader or student) wants something that is will help him get his own leg up.  Something he can use to make himself known and talked about.  Remember that he is the next generation and he wants his turn - and a job.  Not your weak ideas.

 

Let's do marketing first.  As you may have noticed, we live in the cyber age.  Get on the Internet and work it!  Link yourself up, Honey.  Get in there with the others doing the same thing as you.  Be with the in-crowd.  (We will discuss the use of hyphens soon.)  Be everywhere!  And, of course, be attractively presented, which includes having a cool (and memorable) name prominently displayed on your page – everywhere.  It should naturally be a little strange, but not too strange.  And be casual and seemingly indifferent to it all.  But NEVER be really indifferent.  Be moderately daring.  Remember, you're going to be a smooth-skinned professor when your youth is gone, not a wrinkled rock star.

 

Now product development.  This is maybe not as important and marketing, but it is, nonetheless, important.  You do have to have a product to sell, and in this case it means, for the most part, a new philosophical vocabulary and a grammar.  Or tools for thinking and an instruction book on how to use them.  The new words must be attractive.  Here the use of hyphens is effective, eg. Being-in-the-world.  Also strange mis(?)-spellings, eg. Differance, and Existenz.  Foreign words should always be used and then translations of them parenthetically given (with real parentheses).  Sometimes an obvious misuse of a word is a saucy touch; that will give your reader hope of a dissertation topic.  Get your stuff in play. And market those words (and their use).   Get others using them!  Even if you have to bribe them by putting their rotten use of them on your web space. 

 

Now go to Trade Shows, also called conferences, seminars, symposia and guest lecturing.  While there, you can do book signings.  Advertize these affairs everywhere.  Talk it up on your own blog.  Casually write about your preparing for the historical event.  Especially report some last minute hitches that add a little suspense. 

 

And now for clothes.  Honey, you will have to dress right or don't even go.  Remember, it has been for a long time and still is the case that casual is de rigueur.  Frumpy for the old and a respectful touch of punk for the young, though all black may be going out.  Leibniz's wig was fun, but it won't work today; you must not appear to be transcendental right now because it is so very out of fashion.  You can bring your girlfriend, but it's risky because the fashion rules will be difficult for her, and successful philosophers are somewhat distracted from love; if she gets pissy it will be horrible.

 

Finally you have to hook yourself up with an old and prestigious institution.  That will give you substance.  A university and a publishing house.  The trade shows will probably be organized by off-the-wall ad hoc things, but that's fine, because they usually understand marketing.  Work it!  Good Luck.  Remember, you are better than Kant.

 

 

 

4221  Hermeneutics is "the study of the methodological principles of interpretation (as of the Bible)".  It's one of the scare-words in philosophy because whenever you run into it you have to quickly try and remember what it means and you usually come up with only a nebulous nothing.  It's from Hermes "a Greek god of commerce, eloquence, invention, travel, and theft who serves as herald and messenger of the other gods — compare mercury".  Today the commerce part of that god is in command.  To be a philosopher, especially now, means to stake out territory, to defend it, have your name on and have the moral, if not legal, right to be acknowledged in footnotes.  There's not much eloquence involved, but there is plenty of worry about theft.  Hopefully, you'll be able to travel and make enough money teaching, publishing and going to con-ventions to travel and make more money.  No in-ventions required (hyphenated words are very philosophical).  As for the gods and heralding, give me a break.  The only gods are the ethereal cyber gods on porno sites. Philosophy is kind of a macho thing with contracts and publishing commitments. And drunk students who might try and take you down.  It's dangerous business.   I want those pansy-assed Non-philosophers to take note.

 

 

 

4222  Platonic Things, Ontological Things, strike and invade the mind, the body, the one sitting with you.  They take over the horizon, your touching the horizon, the very thought of them out there. That is what it means to be real.  They are other and they overwhelm.  They leave you weak.  They will come again.  They are the Things in there out there up your arching back.  They sometimes appear so sweet.

 

They are the end of thinking.  The End, the blanking out finally after so much work.  They just appeared there and you were under them.  There otherness was what you became.  So sweet.

 

Philosophy is about the frightening things, which are all about you.  The real things. The pushing, striking, rapacious things.  You have no appeal against God.  Bham! you're in the Sky.  Hanging by telons in the telos.  The sweet Telos.

 

 

 

4223  Should we say that the One is or that it isn't?  Is it decidable?  Is it to be decided in an act of intuitionistic deciding?  Aren't rather the One and Existence two and not one, but each one and that both exist but only by participation?  Well Yes, but only mind-blowing powerfully so, the whole idea being meaningless.  That is true philosophy.  The One.  Existence. The Vision of their ontological separation.  The god of dialectic lies there very still.

 

Should we worry that the finished stillness of the Platonic Things will destroy creativity and novelty?  Should we worry that the oblivion of orgasm will destroy foreplay?  Should we worry that the sudden appearance of intense beauty takes your breath away and your legs won't walk?  That life hangs by a thread?  That you never wanted anything else?  Entonces, muero porque no muero. 

 

The Simplicity of the One will kill you because it is simply too desirable. And your thinking falls apart.  The sweet kiss of the end.

 

 

 

4224  Christianity has the idea of the Kairos, the moment that is just the right moment when the conclusion appears, and Hinduism has Shiva, the god of destruction and blessed release; in both the End comes.  Modern continental philosophy never comes to the end of anything.  Thinking rolls on and on and on from one idea to another never reaching or wanting to reach the final appearing of any kind of truth where we can stop.  It worships the God of Potential Infinity.  It is an endlessness compounding of itself, like a thunderhead, into a greater and greater head-bangingly massive … what?  Nothing.  No thunder.  Still, for a while it is fun to try and keep up with it on its reaching farther and farther up or maybe out into the Cartesian Expanse.  World without end, Amen.  Oh, Shiva put a stop to it.  Oh, Jesus, let it reach the final cataclysmic orgasm and then let a happy state come over us where we just forget it.

 

 

 

4224  In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.  Or in a more secular mood, in the beginning were words and the words were with the ordinary objects and the words were ordinary objects.  The plight of the young scholar is to find a way out of the words that have taken over his mind, his life.  He wants to stop think and - just be!  He's trapped in concepts, as he looks at them.  He wants the flesh, his own body, the world of lovers out there.  He in intimate, though, only with himself.  He is a solipsist.  The object that he is is trapped within itself.  And he thinks all objects must be so, dreaming as he is of the other.

 

 

 

4225  My room is full of objects.  I will try to tell you what they are.  What they are in themselves, without referring in any way to my mind's connection to them.  I want to describe for you the object itself, in itself, the way it was and will be, the way it will exist, when no one is aware of it.

 

So I begin.  I might say that here is a particular exemplifying the universal forms: rectangular (and some other forms), brown (plus some other colors), lightweight, usefulness for holding things – and of course the Form of Table is present because it is my tea table.  I, well yes, simplify or I give only a schema of an analysis.  And you say, wait a darn minute, you haven't at all given me what the object is in itself and I say, wait a double darn minute, yes I have given you what the table is in itself.  I will insist, against your insisting otherwise, that those elements I enumerated are not "human concepts projected"; they are what is really there, separate from my mind, waiting for me to look at with my mind's eye. 

 

So now, is what the mind directly sees only the mind?  Do we know only sensa and concepts?  Is the world's itself unavailable?  I answer NO to all of that.  What I see is the object itself.  And the forms and the particulars are not "made" by my seeing.  Elementary realism, Watson. 

 

Moreover, the forms and particulars and connectors I see are final.  I see the ultimate, rock-bottom things.  The world is made out of simple things that don't yield to simpler things.  Finally we just point and we cannot define more closely.  We reach the end.

 

 

 

4226  I sometimes teach English in Nepal.  I am continually aware of the fact that the type of English I teach is an imperial language.  It bothers me.  When I try to switch to a different type of English, however, it is too difficult for the students to learn and it would be impractical anyway, because everyone else knows imperial English.  Let me explain.

 

The imperial language par excellence is Latin.  Imperial English is the Latin part of English, that is to say, the French part.  After William the Conqueror came to the throne in 1066 and French became the language of the Court, we have had to bow to that thing forced onto us by circumstances.  As you know, English became a two tiered affair with French (Latin) forming the upper part and Anglo-Saxon the lower.  The upper part, the high register, became the language of the educated, of law and science.  It signaled that the speaker was of the higher, dominant class.  He could speak at a distance from the world, which is to say, he could speak abstractly.  The lower register, the language of the subservient classes, remained concrete, emotional and of the streets.  Needless to say, there was great prejudice against the lower register by the upper-cut educated.  The prejudice remains, but a strange thing has happened in the course of history.  The lower register, stubbornly has forced itself on us as the means to express truth and the actual – ask a politician or an advertizing copy writer.  The high register, the abstractions of Latin, even the great poetically decorative part of English, has remained suspect.  High English lacks persuasive force.  It lacks power.  It is only the instrument of imperial design.  It communicates social meaning, not truth.  Philosophy translated into Latinate English soon becomes limp.  The thing itself is Anglo-Saxon.

 

I wish I could teach the Anglo-Saxon part of English, but it is too nuanced and its syntactical structures are too dynamic and emotive.  Latinate English fits the technical world.  It is high Imperialism.  Still.

 

 

 

4227  Philosophical decision.  Take the statement: Universals exist.  Historically, there have been two main ways of dealing with that assertion.  One can either answer Yes or No.  Or one can begin to lay out a great long description of the inner workings of the transcendent immanence of the One, the Absolute, (somewhat along the lines of Hegel or Rudy Rucker) until the laying out collapses and then say either: It makes no difference whether you assert it exists or doesn't exist because upon analysis it is, not only undecidable, given the nature or unnature of the One and on and on and this and that in a great whoosh of analysis, dividing and separating without end.  Or you say to assert either Yes or No is, of or for itself, bad faith.

 

The first way, to simply say Yes or No, strikes many of us as beautifully simple and simply real.  This fight is now being fought again by the Non-philosophers.  It is very close to the fight a little over a hundred years ago, in England, between Moore and Russell, the new realists, against Bradley, Mctaggart, and Bosanquet, the Cambridge Neo-Hegelians.  The Non-philosophers, however, are, it seems to me, just an extension of what has been going on in continental philosophy for two hundred years.  Hegel is their god.  Sometimes the devotional literature is well-written and readable, even pleasantly readable; sometimes, and this is more often the case, it is clumsy and dull.  Reid Kane is the former.  I have no problem with that; he is writing the poetry of the Labyrinth and hope for a way out, much as I, encountering the incorrigible of the Real, jump into transcendent flesh and there find the aporetic erotic.  I and these neo-Hegelians both finally fall into the vertigo of philosophy.  Calling it non-philosophy helps matters no more than it helps to say that my hopeless love for a coy other is merely caring.  The pain of thought remains.

 

 

 

4228  In this little essay I do not want to commit the genetic fallacy, which takes the being of something to reside in its genesis.  For example, it is true that if you mix red and blue together you get purple.  That does not mean that purple is the mixing together of red and blue.  Purple is just the color purple.  Here I am going to talk about the origin of some part of English.  That thing present today does not find its essence in that genesis; nonetheless, there is something of that beginning that clings still to the modern usage.  And the modern speakers of English may or may not partake of that.

 

Modern English has preserved some of the older forms of language.  For example, it has both compounded words and the older uncompounded form - such as surrender and give up.  The first is French and the second Germanic.  Sur means up or over.  Render means render, to give.  Or transcend and to climb or jump across as in scandal, a ladder.  Or immanent and to stay inside, maybe to stay at home.  Synthesis and compound mean to put together.  Relation is carry back, structure is to heap up, to spread out, to extend in contention, to hold out and together, to consider is to be with the stars, which are strewn, a disorderly street or ejected or thrown out from Uranos, which is the waters.  My point is that we have two forms of saying much the same thing, but the feel is different.  The analytic, not the synthetic is older.

 

Ever since the French invaded in 1066 and made French the high language of the superior echelons of the life of the intellect or whatever, we have been stuck thinking that the old Germanic part of the language, with its separated prepositional particles or separable prefixes, is BAD.  It is the language of peasants.  And they, with their rough ways, and not subtle enough for sophisticated thinking.  At least they is emotionally challenged.  The lower classes do not have the proper detachment and abstraction and disinterest necessary for advanced minds.  They cannot concentrate, etymologically speaking, they cannot be with the prick.  And thus philosophy, the pre-eminent intellectual activity, must be written in high French/Latin or, even better, Greek.  And thus avoid the disturbances of non-thought, ie. low class emotionalism.

 

One thing that English has failed to maintain, and other languages have somewhat kept, is the middle voice.  German has the word sich and the romance languages have se.  Poor English has self and itself, which are used to translate those others, but it fails miserably.  We do, however, have the strangeness of the intransitive verb.  We can say both, He closed the door and The door closed.  The second has, when you think about it, a spooky self-cause or without-cause.  Intransitive verbs retain something of the middle voice.  The un-order of which bugs many intellectuals and they don't use it.  I love it.  So does Heidegger in his great game with language.

 

My point in mentioning all this is to show up a feature of my writing, namely, my extensive use of the energetic particle or preposition with its Anglo-Saxon partner and my love of intransitive verbs.  I have, therefore, stayed close to the Germanic part of the language.  And I have, Oh my, become more emotional, but also more strongly accurate, involved, interested, attached and concrete.  The cool, distant, and properly Latinate intellectuals look away.  Latin is for a kind of imperial domination of the mind.  Nonetheless, I too use it to decorate my writing with the other, as is obvious. (Really, I do love to study Latin and Greek, but I look for the great, old Indo-European root.  I shudder when it shows up.)

 

Now for persuasive argument. It is somewhat amazing that the Germanic part of English still retains the feel of truth and the real, while the French part seems deceptive and too abstract to be real.  The French part persuades by mere imperial force.  The high-minded are above the rest and MUST be believed, simply because they are beautifully impressive in their complexity.  The German part, though, at its best, is just simply apparent to everyone not so oppressed.

 

The German language today has, alas, prided itself on creating great compounds to match those of Latin and it has even imitated Latin syntax.  It so wants to be imperial.  I look back to the old forms and I seem to feel something of the origin clinging to them. It may all be romantic imagination, but I am not alone in doing that.

 

 

 

4229  There are certain historically prominent dualisms in philosophy: thing-fact, universal-particular, one-many, actual-potential, same-different and on and on.  The philosopher thinks the difference and the being together.  In one thought he sees both separate and united.  It's a transcendent seeing and it is also baffling just how that single thought itself unites so intimately with the dual pair.  Nonetheless, the idea and the unity cannot be denied.  That vision is philosophy.  One does not have to stand outside philosophy to see it.  It is real and it is right there.  You are that.  It is also Kierkegaard's religious Instant, the absolute paradox, the Absurd.  No science can be made of it.  It is the impish, grinning god.  The Godhead beyond God.

 

If I am aware that he is near, then right there is the thought that I am as a particular exemplifying a universal.  I am a particular exemplifying the thought 'he is near' and that simple thought, one thing, is intimate with the fact of his being near and there you are.  Mind and the world of facts are intimate and the same, but other and not one thing.  To philosophically think that is the philosophy of philosophy, the ontology of ontology, and it is Philosophy Himself.  Eventually he becomes entangled in the bed sheets of this love play and the others refuse to watch.  Philosophy finally finds itself alone out in the marshes.  An itch and a pestering.  The gadfly of thought has wings.  The Boy escapes my grasp.

 

 

 

4230  Modern professional philosophers, humble servants of society, just like Jesus, have projects going.  It is, of necessity, a solipsism.  They don't have time to take on every bit of criticism that comes from outside into their head.  Maybe none of it, except in a token fashion just to appear sociable – noblesse oblige.  They have too little time and too much gathering and separating to do.  They smilingly glide by other philosophers at conferences.

 

It was probably Hegel who taught us that philosophy should give up the philia part and become a science.  We don't have time to mess with precious feelings.  There's work to be done.  Martha is just simply going to lock Mary out of the house.

 

We have no time.  The idiots out there will have to be dealt with eventually.  The pestering, mystical gadflies will have to die.  Socrates was an idiot.  Jesus was a whiner.  Max Stirner is nobody.  We are the Overmen.  New things are happening under our super-vision.

 

Modern professional philosophers are concerned.  In the future, everyone will have to have a project.

 

 

 

4231  Non-philosophers think that all philosophy begins when some would-be philosopher decides on a fundamental cut, a driving dualism that will be the controlling force of this dialectic.  This Non-philosopher isn't against such a cut as such, he only wants to step back, out of philosophy, and see the form of all such cuts.  He himself will make no cut.  Perhaps, he thinks, he can make a science of the cut and he can axiomatize it.  I think not.  Philosophy is much too wild and incorrigible for such a corralling. 

 

The whole of metaphysics was invented in Athens just to attempt such a corralling of the boy of the agora.  It is true that the boy was distracted for a while, but he escaped.  And this back-handed attempt at a non-attempt will fail also.  Philosophy has always watched himself in the mirror called Being and he has always been not this, not that, ever something else, maybe nothing.  He is not to be axiomatized, weighed out and valued, your good; he is beyond good and evil.  He is Pteros and will fly away.

 

Eros will not put up with the cool deceptions of non-philosophy.  One must love of leave, no mere disinterested knowing.  That is my Platonism.  Lysis is not invited. 

 

 

 

4232  I have spent some time, using these words and those, trying to say that Non-philosophy just simply isn't going to work.  Now I will describe just how Non-philosophy is similar to my philosophy. 

 

I have always made a distinction between ontological things and an ordinary object.  Ordinary objects are, I suppose I could say, the stuff of non-philosophy.  And ontological things are, obviously, philosophical.  And I have said that the division is total.  There is no nexus between them.  Indeed, when one is "in" either the other doesn't even exist.  I remain on the ontological side when I am doing philosophy. When I go to work and drive a car and watch TV, then philosophy is nowhere.  The division is absolute.

 

Nonetheless, when I write I do very often, maybe more often than I realize, speak of the struggle of living in both worlds.  The Boy and the boy.

 

For all that, I do think that any philosophy that thinks that ontological things are just concepts or words is nominalism.  And that nominalism matches the thinking of the ordinary world.  The everyday world is nominalistic.  The everyday world is the world away from what it considers philosophical concepts, what I call ontological things.  Non-philosophy tries to get at the real aside from our predicating any of, what it calls, philosophical concepts onto it.  Non-philosophy is the nominalism of the everyday.  And it sees philosophy as only an intellectual game of concept formation.  I beg to differ.  I live on the other side, where the "game" is real.

 

The true name of the One-without-concept, the Real, in Non-philosophy is the Everyday.  It is the science of the ordinary.  I suspect they were thinking of something a little more mystical and delicate.

 

What are the ontological things?  Before I begin let me say that I do not come out of the Kantian-Hegelian-Continental tradition; therefore, I will not use such words as transcendent, immanent, empirical, conditioned, synthesized or even concept.  Rather I speak of bare particulars (to account for individuation), universals - including relations (to account for sameness), a nexus of exemplification (to account for the union of particular and universal), and fact to name that complex union, a something other than those three above.  In addition to those I have logical connectors and quantifiers, logical forms, numbers, sets, and such circumstances as a is different from b.  There are also universality, particularity, nexus-ness, and setness etc.  And to make some facts be actual and some potential there are the entities actuality and potentiality.  You can see that this is a pretty big haul, but I insist, they (and more) are all there to be seen and noted.  The mind contributes NOTHING to making the world I see be.  All of those things are given phenomenologically.  They are there in plain view.  And they are there when unseen.  Moreover, there are the things that make a mind, which is there just as much as computers and governments and my hand.  It all exists.  A mind is a particular exemplifying a thought and a type, such a perceiving, remembering, doubting etc..  A thought is of a fact.  If the fact is a particular exemplifying hot, then the simple idea is 'this is hot'.  I emphasize that an idea, which is a universal, is simple, it has no parts, though it is 'of' a fact, which does have parts (on the continent, that simplicity may be called transcendental unity). Also the 'of' or the nexus of intention truly exists.  The nexus between a set and its elements exists.  Existence exists as does negation and otherness.  My ontology is a jungle or slum or magical playground.  It is definitely not the desert of nominalism, which has none, absolutely none, of those things mentioned above, which it considers vocis flatus or, more hospitably, mere concepts created by the mind and dropped off out there in intellectual space.

 

Those are ontological things.  They are not "of" the everyday world, the world of ordinary objects handled by ordinary people. I think ontological things exist because they press hard upon my spirit, in the same way that they do not press at all upon the everyday person.  I am undone by philosophy.  The non-philosopher with his Non-philosophy blithely walks on.

 

The non-philosophy of Non-philosophy won't work because the everyday world doesn't give a damn about your Non-philosophy, for one thing.  For another philosophy, which does give a damn, will give you no peace for slighting it.  You will be abandoned to the ordinary, your new lover.

 

 

 

4233  What are the ontological things?  Before I begin let me say that I do not come out of the Kantian-Hegelian-Continental tradition; therefore, I will not use such words as transcendent, immanent, empirical, conditioned, synthesized or even concept.  Rather I speak of bare particulars (to account for individuation), universals - including relations (to account for sameness), a nexus of exemplification (to account for the union of particular and universal), and fact to  name that complex union.  In addition to those I have logical connectors and quantifiers, logical forms, numbers, sets, and circumastances such as a is different from b.  There are also universality, particularity, nexus-ness, and setness etc.  And to make some facts be actual and some potential there are the entities actuality and potentiality.  You can see that this is a pretty big haul, but I insist, they are all there to be seen and noted.  The mind contributes NOTHING to making the world I see be.  All of those things are given phenomenologically.  They are there.  And there are the things that make a mind, which is there just as much as computers and governments and my hand.  It's all real.  A mind is a particular exemplifying a thought and a type, such a perceiving, remembering, doubting etc..  A thought is of a fact.  If the fact is a particular exemplifying hot, then the simple idea is 'this is hot'.  I emphasize that an idea, which is a universal, is simple, it has no parts, though it is 'of' a fact, which does have parts.  The 'of' or the nexus of intention also exists.  The nexus between a set and its elements also exists.  My ontology is a jungle or slum or magical playground.  It is definitely not the desert of nominalism, which has none, absolutely none, of those things mentioned above. 

 

Those are ontological things.  They are not "of" the everyday world, the world of ordinary objects handled by ordinary people.  I think ontological things exist because they press hard upon my spirit, in the same way that they do not press at all on the everyday person.  I am undone by philosophy.  The non-philosopher with his Non-philosophy blithely walks on. 

 

 

 

4234  The philosopher is an arrogant know-it-all.  Or so the Many think.  Even if he is a die-hard agnostic, he still is so very sure of himself.  If he proclaims that there is no God, he is himself become that Absence.  He is lord of thought.  He is philosophy.  He is an idiot.

 

Or so the Many think, and they may be right.  Unless it is God himself speaking through the philosopher, who is just taking dictation.  Even the agnosticism and the atheism may be just God being God speaking the unspeakable right nicely.  And even the publisher's contract (the covenant).  Maybe it is God that is the arrogant power-tripper (or the con-artist).  No wonder He and philosophy are hated by so many philosophers.  He will take over the field if even his shadow, our memory, wafts by.  Philosophy is a dangerous game – and real.

 

So is the philosopher just that?  No, but God is.  It's hard being divine.  Man is the plaything of this child Imp - יהוה.  His Words are shot through with anxiety.  We swerve out of the way the best we can. 

 

 

 

4235  There is a science of philosophy in the same way as there is a science of falling in love.  Yes, of course, and they have about the same value – they're almost worthless as a description of real emotion and real thinking.  The science of love today probably does more harm than good in that it is used mainly as a way of avoidance.  It is a void.  Both love and philosophy are a falling and have something about them that escapes or tries to escape the everyday and science is of the everyday.  Science and the everyday are both concerned to block the escape.  That escape is called emotional immaturity.  Immaturity is the main sin today.

 

 

 

4236  Philosophy blogs with postings by the academically situated –sometimes with references to their books – reveal Western Individualism and the cult of personality.  The philosophical ideas are less important than the philosopher.  Philosophy is the philosopher.  The philosopher becomes philosophy.  Ideas are the shadow of the person creating and owning them.  The internet is a society of mutual admiration and disdain.  It is a clique at best, caged rational animals prowling for each other at worst.  Like a street gang, they bow to the dominant one and watch out for outsiders.  An Idea is little more than a stylish get-up.  It is a pedestrian place.  Not peripatetic.  Some, out of fear but trying to speak the same hip language, have tried for a momentarily safer, more deferential science of philosophy, a Non-philosophy.  Ordinary guys doing their best to get along.

 

 

 

4237  What I have been writing here is a strong form of direct realism.  If you want to call that naïve realism, I have no objection.  Being is directly present to my mind's eye.  It has been argued that to hold that view I have to bypass the causal chain of sensory processing.  Well Yes, of course I do.  I, however, don't do the bypassing; it is just the nature of such seeing that it is uninvolved with such a chain.  I report in that matter what I directly see.  The devotees of science will stand aghast.  It seems to me, though, that I have said nothing against science; the two ways of science and direct realism are fully compatible.

 

I have recently been paying some attention to a group of bloggers who come out of continental philosophy and who want to be realists.  As far as I can tell they are not direct realists, but rather typical representative realists.  They are also, as far as I can make out, nominalists.  The fact that, after reading quite a bit of what writings that are available to me, I am still unsure where they stand, is, I surmise, the result of the indirect, allusive quality of their thinking.  It makes them hesitate to come to the point, any point, and blurt it out - directly.  They are ever beating around some bush.  I wonder if they ever go in.

 

 

 

4238  There are two types of philosophical materialism:  one denies completely that any such thing as a mental act exists – only neural processes.  The other says that mental acts exist but they "emerge" out of those same neural happenings.  The first one is patently absurd.  It's like someone saying that color doesn't exist.  Of course it does.  You have to be mad to think otherwise.  Some who would call themselves philosophers apparently are.  The second type is a little more interesting.  It has the beauty of fairy tales.  The brain is like Aladdin's lamp.  If you excite it by rubbing it phantasmagoria rise up.  It's a child's philosophy.  Philosophical materialism is so silly as to make one wonder if it's worth debating.

 

There are those – the physicalists – who want to substitute a causal connection for an intentional nexus.  And then through the magic of isomorphism a likeness of the outer world is deposited on the surface of the brain.  Just how we "see" that little image is not spoken.  Apparently, we see it directly without another image intervening.  And what is that little guy, anyway?  And are we that when we think?  We are in the land of magic, and that is why it is so popular on tv and in the movies

 

Remember, idealism and materialism are dialectically the same.  The one quickly appears in the place of the other.

 

 

 

4239  Quite often on the Internet and in writing we encounter the thoughts of someone speaking his mind about dualism in philosophy.  Usually he finds the idea ultimately somehow distasteful.  He looks for a deep unity to Being.  In science he wants to overcome the mind-body dualism.  He may look forward to a time when there is a physical explanation of consciousness.  He feels that he wants that.  It seems to me though that this particular dualism has become so turbid and riled up in our philosophical history that we can hardly think it clearly.  So I propose a slightly different version of the same thing.  Let us consider the everyday phenomena of water and H2O.  Consider the simple wetness of water, its crystalline brilliance, its smooth flow, its refreshing touch, its sweet taste, its gurgling sound and on and on.  Now consider the physical "explanation" of that.  We have long ago gone past atoms and molecules; we are now as far as the 12-diminsional banes of string theory.  Let's just imagine that such a theory turns out to be pretty much true and that it is offered to us as an explanation of what water, with all the qualities mentioned above, actually is.  After a moment's reflection and gathering up courage we will tell the "explainer" that he is a fucking idiot.  Water most certainly is not a 12-D bane structure.  Water is water and if it is sometimes associated with such a space-time geometrical structure then that association is only a mere association; it is most emphatically not what water is.  Those who are afraid of offending the religion of science will stare in amazement that you could utter such heresy.  So be it.  Now there is a dualism for you.  And explaining one part of it by means of the other is utter nonsense!

 

 

 

4240  The argument between realists and idealists is very old and often fruitless, but it can sometimes be fun, so here goes.  I will use the overly simplified definition of a realist as someone who finds or discovers or uncovers the things of existence out there somewhere in some place not his own mind.  The idealist is someone who believes that the things out there are "put" there by mind (his own or otherwise) after "creating" those things in itself.  The idealist believes that the world "comes from" mind – not necessarily that it exists "in" the mind.  The realist may actually believe that the world exists "in" some mind and still be a realist as long as it wasn't "created" by the mind.

 

The realist only sees the world; the idealist creates and projects the world from itself.  What is it that the idealist creates and projects?  One common name is "meanings".  The mind gives meaning to the world.  Before that giving, imposing, projecting, there was only the unknown, the dark noumena perhaps.  Today, because science rules our lives, that unknown is usually thought of as the "stuff" that physics studies.  Let's call it "scientific things".  We can only make educated guesses at what these scientific things are, but we see clearly the Lebenswelt, the everyday world around us.  That everyday world, the phenomena, aren't somehow "real" for the idealist, because mind created it and projected it and without man's constant attention it vanishes into the nothing that it is.

 

Personally, I don't think there is such an agent mind with the ability to create meanings and project them.  This, in times past, was the prerogative of God.  He made the Forms and projected them onto matter.  That was called Creation.  Now man himself claims the right and the ability.  Phenomenologically, when I look to see this act of meaning creation and projection, I "see" nothing.  It simply isn't there.

 

There is also one other ability of a supposed agent mind that I don't see.  The ability to unite and separate.  Take a random field of dots.  The mind, supposedly, has the ability see arrangements in the dots by uniting and separating them into groupings.  For example, it could sometimes see a horse and then table and then a face and then two faces – all by "creating" these unities and separations.  The realist says he discovers these groupings that are already there.  Again, I see no agent mind with such abilities.  No creation, no projection.  The world does not "come out of" the mind as far as I can philosophically see.  In fact, the mind contributes NOTHING to the form or the existence of the world.

 

As for my cup of coffee, it would still be a cup of coffee (I'm not talking about scientific things!) even if all minds vanished.

 

 

 

4241  For over a century philosophers have worried about what to do with scientific things.  Are they the real things?  Are they the Kantian Noumena?  And what are they anyway?  I want to draw a purely definitional difference here.  An ordinary material thing, like my table and my cup of coffee and the moon, I will call a physical thing to distinguish it from a mental thing such as a remembering and a perceiving and an imagining.  A scientific thing, as I will call it, is that that a physicist comes up with in his speculations about the fine, unseen things of the material world.  In the past the most important scientific things were atoms and electrons and electromagnetic force and such, now we have moved on to the vacuum and virtual particles, or maybe information packets, or 12-dimentional banes, or what-have-you.  It seems that yearly new entities are presented as the most fundamental.  It's not my job to sort it out.  I do, however, see that the physicist is very good at pointing out the turbulence in that "underworld" he studies and even accounting for it, but he is hard pressed to account for the relative stability we see on the surface.  The attractors of chaos theory don't quite do it.  Nor the musings of complexity theory.  It is Dionysian revelry down there and it somehow supports an Apollonian calm.  It is that wild chaotic aspect that aligns it with the Kantian Noumena, the Sublime.  It has been a blade of grass in the side of the sedate philosophical scholar for quite some time now.

 

 

 

4242  There are those philosophers who don't want there to be universal forms "out there" controlling us.  They rush to preserve the mind's freedom from such tyranny.  And there are others, perhaps like me, who have felt the nightmare something that comes betimes and threatens to come again.  They seek refuge in the real presence of a strong and calm ordering hand.  The latter think the former naïve about what is really there.  The former blithely go on into the sparkling openness of the nothing at all.  The latter avert their eyes away from the approaching stairs. 

 

At the end of the nineteenth century, after Decadence, and the fin-de-siècle, after the crush of man in the industrial machine, perhaps in premonitions of the coming Great War, Husserl and Russell and others rushed toward a philosophy of essences and universals in clear thinking and pure logic.  It lasted until the end of the twentieth century when the young again longed for the revelry of Dionysian freedom that they thought would bring back the Thrill.  It is here.

 

 

 

4243  Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle, which controls so much of Quantum Theory can, arguably, be interpreted ontologically or epistemologically.  I interpret it ontologically.  Therefore, as I see it, the more confined the space we consider, the more indeterminate the energy that is there.  An infinitesimal space would have instant energy values from zero to infinity.  Conversely, the more closely we determine the energy of a something, the more places that something is at.  If its energy is infinitely determined, then it will be instantly located all over the infinite universe.  To repeat, I am speaking of where it actually is and what energy it actually has, not just of my mental uncertainty of where and what.  Such is the horrible beauty that physics has revealed to us.

 

We cannot live in such an unsettled place.  The world we do live in is much more constant and calm, in spite of the irruptions of disorder we do see.  The chaotic feel of physics is akin to the holy killing of religious sacrifice.  The jolt of the random, the no-way-back, the total forgetting, all of the terror that the gods revealed is there in physics.  And as modern man has tried to deny the gods because of that, so they try to undo the truth of physics by calling it incomplete and a model and a metaphor for … we simply look away.

 

 

 

It needs the trembling of the moment and then a long silence.  (Duende – Lorca)

 

4244  Many young philosophers today call themselves materialists, but they absolutely are not.  They are computer geek organizers and they think all that's worthy in life really revolves around that scholarly outline mark-up.  They think the flow of life can be laid out in a flow chart.  They practice ontology, that ancient study, but by that they mean sorting and sifting like a search engine.  Advances in ontology mean to devise a clever new way of sorting and sifting.  Creativity means to devise a clever new way of sorting and sifting.  Ethics means to devise a clever new way of sorting and sifting.  He believes sorting and sifting is all for the good.  A true materialist is far from that.

 

The material world is not some sort of giant computer.  To think so is to show how foreign the material world has become to that modern, urban, categorizing mind.

 

Here's Emily Dickinson:

 

But nature is a stranger yet;

The ones that cite her most

Have never passed her haunted house,

Nor simplified her ghost.

 

To pity those that know her not

Is helped by the regret

That those who know her, know her less

The nearer her they get.

 

 

 

4245  There is something dark and creepy about true materialism. It stammers and reaches for help.  Take the currently fashionable word "supervenience" that is sometimes used to explain how consciusness rides on neural activity.  The idea is that a set (eg. of neural properties) might be said to supervene upon its element. Does the set then exist as a thing other than its elements?  No, yes, no.  It doesn't exist; it half-exists, it is a ghostly thing hovering over the elements.  It emerges, it doubles, it flits about, but it is nothing.  Or nothing of itself, or, like time, you see it only if you don't look at it.  It is in the creep of materialism.  In the light of day it vanishes, all except for its Latinate name, which was put on it to let it share in the Latin Imperium and somehow be.  And give the philosopher some substance himself.  Supervenience is a ghostly idea of a true materialist.

 

 

 

4246  Here are my thoughts on the very difficult ontology of sets.  First, it seems to me that we will have to give sets higher ontological status than is usually given.  Usually they are seen as somehow less than their elements because they are derived from their elements.  They are seen to depend on their elements and not vice versa.  Their existence is thought to come from their elements.  And they are complexes formed from them.  I want to say that sets have existence in their own right underived.  I think they are simple existents, not complex.  Thus we will have to have a nexus to unite them to their elements. 

 

Consider a set of fine china.  That they are a set is something we can think and that complete setness is impressive.  Or a collection of sonnets.  A herd of elephants.  A sky full of stars.  The set as a set is strongly something.  Each individual thing alone has a totally different feel.  It is equally important though that we can think the individual things separately and distinctly.  And as separate from the set.  Also from the subsets.  And we can think the individual pieces as belonging to the set.  That nexus of belonging is highly important and we can think it right easily.  The set, the pieces or elements, and the nexus are all there strongly and equal in existence.

 

Moreover, there must be they idea of set plus nexus plus element.  aεA symbolizes the set and    'a εA'  symbolizes the thought of the set.

 

We need a separate word to name the set without its elements and maybe use the word "set" to name the complex whole of that plus elements. 

 

 

 

4247  In this world there are two types of people: those who divide the world into two types of people and those who don’t.  In these next few paragraphs I am going to be of the first kind.  The two kinds are realists and idealists.  The former like the feel of a strong overwhelming existent existing out there, independent of them, coming at them.  Maybe they like standing next to a locomotive or under the raging sky or almost touching the smoothness of that face.  And the latter don't like the feeling of dominance that such an overwhelming thing forces onto them, as though taking away their freedom.  So, does existence impinge on your mind demanding acceptance or is there only the unformed out there waiting for your informing hand?  Is existence and meaning given to you or is it you that gives existence and meaning to the world out there.  Are you submissive or dominant?  Are you a slave or a master of existence?  Which feels better to you?  Which is more erotic? Which is more liberating?  I like the feel of real things out there coming at me.

 

When I write I wait to name the existents and I let them be as they come.  I let them be.  I am anxious that I don't cover them up with many words or evasions of explanation.  And I hope they act through me onto my reader.  He may turn away.  He may permit their presence to stand.  It is not my choice or my ordering in this matter.  Existence does at it will.

 

The former are classical Platonists and want to argue forcibly for its truth.  They represent Philosophy itself.  The latter are nominalists and by denying existence to those things that would unjustly and oppressively exist they think to take away the ground of all arguing and assertions of truth.  They represent the overcoming of philosophy.

 

 

 

4248  My guess about the young materialists today is that they latched onto materialism (in itself a silly philosophy for non-philosophers) because early on they were presented with a choice between that or a sensualist phenomenalism (a type of subjective idealism).  Somehow in materialism they saw the hope of an objective realism.  They are the inheritors of Classical Empiricism and they were thus presented no other choice.

 

For some reason those so-called empiricists and their modern followers, when they think of mind and consciousness, think only of sensa.  Thought, for them, is a matter of arranging the sensa presented by the brain.  That's all.  Thoughts such as: 'Tomorrow my friends are coming at 4:00 and I have to prepare lunch.' or 'Does this receipt call for one or two cups of flour?' or 'Did my phone just ring or was that something on tv?' or 'I remember his pouty look so well.' or 'I really should have done my laundry yesterday.' or 'You look stunning in that outfit, but your hair's a mess.'  etc. etc..  In other words, every ordinary and extraordinary thought you could ever have, including those you are having reading this.  These are never thought of in their philosophies.  Materialism struggles to handle these things, yet they are surely things that exist because, by simple introspection, I know that I am a series of thoughts right now.  It is not to be denied – except by the naturally skeptical, who doubt everything for fear of being taken in.

 

Let's examine a thought.  Is it simple or complex?  Is it a universal or an individual?  As I see it, a thought – for example 'My God! you have big feet!' – is a simple universal that could be exemplified by many particular awarenesses or minds.  I stress the simplicity of that universal.  The fact of the particular awareness exemplifying that universal is, however, not simple, but composed of the particular, the universal that is the thought, and the nexus tying them together.  A materialist rolls his eyes and walks on, thoughtless.  

 

 

 

4249  The fight against "Correlationalism" is entirely wrong-headed.  These ontological warriors sometimes call it the Parmenidean "Axiom", which is that "thought and being are one", and from that they want to move on to Kant and to the idea that the only thing "humans" can know is what is known "humanly".  These fighters think that Parmenides was trying to trap Being in thought (which they think is only a human thing) and they want to get away from the merely human to the object in-itself.  Presumably into the unthinkable.

 

The wrong-headedness of all that is to think that thought is human.  These people have an altogether too anthropomorphic view of man.  Consider the fact: If I don't close my window soon my books are going to get wet.   That fact is a complex ontological something.  It is "within" Being.  Now take the thought: 'If I don't close my window soon my books are going to get wet'.  That is the "same" as the fact except it is not a complexity; it is a simple thing.  That simple thing must be connected to the fact (because that is what ontology does).  Let's call the connector the nexus of intentionality.  It is not a causal nexus.  To simplify:  'F(x)' M  F(x).  M stands for "means" or "intends".  A simple thing is "mapped onto" a complex.  Now then, in all that there is nothing "human".  It is just the Aristotelian idea:  The mind is one; the world is many.

 

The fact is real (or potential).  The idea is a simple universal and therefore exists.  If it is exemplified by a particular then it is actual (otherwise potential).  The only "speculating" into the unknown beyond our seeing (not our thought) is into the Dionysian vortex of physics. 

 

To say that thought is one with Being is not to say that we are making Being into a human thing.

 

 

 

4250  Being divides with itself face to face.  The particular intimately faces the universal facing the particular.  The universal, the particular and the intimate nexus.  Without the nexus there is no Eros within Being.

 

I think.  I am with philosophy.  A thought comes to me.  The thought 'Being is face to face with Being' is a universal and it lies intimate with me.  I am a particular that takes on, that exemplifies, that is joined with, tied to, that form that of itself is timeless.  My thoughts are not me, but come to me.  Therefore, the thought fused with these words are not mine, but something of Being, just as I, a bare particular, am.  Sartre was very good at speaking my existence without essence.  Until the thought, my essence, came and took me.

 

 

 

4251  Thoughts fuse with words in sentences.  It's amazing.  In my writings, I particularly emphasize the outer, formal appearance of the sentence, and I do that in order that I may show forth the impersonal form of Being that is philosophical thought.  My thoughts are not me.  My sentences are not me.  The repetition and the rhythms of idea and sound are universals.  The reader, you, should fall away from yourself into that.  We are both totally gone.  Only Being and the Forms of Being remain.  Only That controls.  

 

 

 

4252  When I was young I, at times, would walk into a room with others and I could feel my own beauty.  And in the same instant I could feel that my appearing form was not me but something that hovered near and that I, a bare nothing, only moved up close to.  That is the facticity of our being.  We are each a bare particular, a mere existent, that fleetingly participates in a distant Form.  The Form is not us, but a timeless universal.  And that is a hard philosophy to hold.  The personal and the human are gone.  Man becomes, not anthropomorphic, but theomorphic.  We are taken and held up.  Perhaps that is Die Aufhebung.

 

 

 

4253  Consider the fact that all my clothes are dirty.  If all human minds, or even all minds including those of animals and angels, vanished from here would it still be true that all my clothes are dirty.  My answer is Yes.  Facts are independent of thoughts of them and from other facts.  And that's the end of it.  Oh my goodness, the idealists roar, then sigh.  All those notions of all and my and clothes and being and dirty most certainly depend on a huge amount, a whole truckload of other things, most certainly human thought.  Without humans and their stupendous cultural machinery (not to mention the very idea of soap) none of that would have any meaning and thus not exist at all.  Nonsense, I say, there is no dependency.  The fact is just the fact and facts are independent of each other. That is the difference between realism and idealism.

 

Now let's consider another fact – all my clothes are dirty and if I don't wash them soon nobody will come visit me because they will stink to the third heaven.  Here, that previous fact is "inside" another more complex fact.  So, the question is: What is the relation between the smaller and the bigger fact.  The answer is that there is none.  All facts are independent.  So you can have the very, very big fact of the world's eco-system or the social networks of France or the secret codes in prison or whatever and all those facts and the lesser ones "inside" them are all independent.  Can you catch my drift?  Have I drifted too far out into ontology away from the everydayness of science to be of any value?  If so, so what?  Ontology is ontology and everyday scientific common-sense is something else.  Try to twist you mind around and see my beautiful idea.

 

Take the fact that all my clothes are dirty.  And the fact that I know that all my clothes are dirty.  And the fact that the thought 'all my clothes are dirty' intends the fact that all my clothes are dirty.  Three facts.  They are all independent. 

 

In a philosophy that gives, not only independence, but also true existence to facts, perhaps a Whiteheadian Eventism, no fact or event is ever lost.  All facts forever exist.  They pile in with each other to make a world, but they do not blend or dissolve into the darkness of time.  They are all right there each itself now and always in the openness of Being.  It's a mystical vision – perhaps in God.

 

 

 

4254  Let's suppose you have a structure and it is a structure, one thing.  If that structure persists through time and change and all kinds of rotations, if it perdures and maintains its one-thingness through all that, then it is an object.  It has substance. For example, my cup of coffee or WWII or my love affair with A… or that unpaid book fine.  And then you can study it, if you get a grant, in detail in its "inner" workings, irrespective of its relations with other objects.  If you want.  It just won't go away no matter how you reconceptualize it.  It is like the tree that guy in Sartre's Nausea talked about.  Brute fact.  Or brute object.  Whatever, you're stuck with it.  Like that pimple on your nose.  You cannot analyze it out of existence.  Unless you're a really really good analyst.  There is always something of the tedium of the everyday about an object.  Die Langweiligkeit des Lebens.  Philosophy becomes blunt-nosed Sophia, so ho-hum in the land of not-at-all-philosophy.

 

 

 

4255  Let's say there is an orchestra and they are practicing Brahms third whatever and they have been working at it for about a week.  They are doing a pretty good job at "getting it together", but they still aren't "there".  They practice and rehearse and work on it until everyone just wants to go home.  They are waiting for something to happen.  What is it?  They are not waiting to "get it together", rather they are waiting for it to "come together".  At that final moment, they will not be playing the piece, but It will be playing them.  It will come.  That is the difference between a set of relations and the Object itself.  That change from the performers' being active to their being passive to It is the magical moment of performance.  How to describe it?

 

To describe it or name it we drop all technical jargon and resort to those little, hard Anglo-Saxon words.  It takes over, falls into place, hits the mark, takes off.  The thing itself is here.  The dancer is danced by the Dance.  The spirit strikes.  The audience is silent, then roars.

 

It doesn't have to be anything so grand as an orchestra; it could be you finally getting the look you want for the evening.  Suddenly magic.  You are It.  It's maddening that you can't say what happened or control it or make it stay.  The Object itself is there. 

 

I will say one thing about making It come.  It usually comes when you are so tired of trying to make it come, of working to bring it about, of almost giving up and falling into sleep.  In that twilight of tedium it sometimes appears.  The monotonous repetition repetition repetition and then … there It is!

 

 

 

4257  When I look at my own image in the mind of another, I see nothing; rather, I see the other looking at his own image within me.  I am a mirror and a mirror cannot see itself in what it mirrors.  The other looks at me as into a mirror.  I strive to have a presence in someone's hearing and seeing, but I have none.  I don't run from being seen and being heard, but I can't find it and I learn to know the absence as the place of another presence.  I am Dasein.  I watch.

 

 

 

4258  "…he doth hang on the cheek of night like a jewel in a rich Ethiop's ear."  I lie on my bed and I imagine a bright beauty pendant in the dark sheen of my mind.  He is blank. 

 

I philosophize and I see hanging in my intuition all the elements from which the world was made.  They languidly remain.  Beyond my vision there is only horrible chaos.  I wait.  I momentarily name the beings of light.  I allude to them, they elude my grasp, the lute of love plays on.  Eyes aflame.

 

 

 

4259  My friend is one day up and one day down.  One day he looks so very nice then another day he looks bad.  His hair is long, then it is short.  He is everything changeable.  I suppose you could make a list of characteristics that would somehow capture something about him, but it would be a jumbled lot and self-contradictory.  Making a list, probably even an infinite list, would be of no use.  He would easily escape your attempt.  Nonetheless, I have seen one little gesture, one slight movement, one glance, one way of walking and a tilt of the head that quite completely captured the essence of him.  His being was present.  Perfectly.  It's amazing and a bewilderment for philosophy.

 

The being of a thing is not defined by any set of properties.  It is other.  And it is not anything hidden and forever inaccessible.  That being is very present, sometimes powerfully and luminously.  And, mystery of mysteries, it appears in the least of things.  It is here that less is more.  To find the highest look for the lowest.  Metonymy.  Marcel Proust was the writer of this seeing and remembering. 

 

 

 

4260  "… nothing can be grasped without language and concepts. Therefore logocentric linguistics can never reach the pure presence
of being and must be reduced to incoherence if it tries. "

 

That quote is from an Internet article on Derrida.  I don't know if it is something Derrida would agree with or not, but I certainly don't.  At least I don't agree with what I think is implied.  I think the implication is that concepts and language are blocking-intermediaries between the mind and some absent object.  The mind ends up aware only of the representative of the object.  It seems to me that language and concepts exist and they are "of" something else, but we can also be directly aware of that something else just as we are directly aware of language and concepts.  We can look and see if there is a match.  We don't need to try and reach through the representative to the object.  We can go directly to the object without language and concepts.  In the end, these representatives are not of interest to ontology.  They are things of the world as are pictures in a book and we see them and the world directly and the connector.  We CAN grasp the world without language and concepts - directly.  And our own speaking voice with its connection to the things very present to the mind.  We reach the object easily. 

 

 

 

4261  It is the job of a nexus in ontology to join together two categorically different things.  Those words "join together" and "categorically different" are weak.  The connection is tight, extremely tight, so tight that most thinkers think there either was never any division to begin with or it is only a mind-creation.  For example, the joining together of a set and its elements, of a particular and its properties, of thought and object, of redness with color.  Of Dance and the dancer, of trembling and anxiety, of God and Divinity, of water and H2O, of the body and life.  Of theorem and axiom, of number and collection, of time and eternity, of words and meaning.  Of smile and lips, of eyes and gaze, of touch and skin, of bite and teeth.  Of the whole world of sound and ear (so hard to think), of fragrance and the gray cerebral cortex.  Categorically different things joined, but never destroyed as two.  Extension and intention lie under the hot sun of the plains, joined in exquisite embrace.

 

Let's call the joined pair a fact of the world.  It seems that that fact and the things joined and the nexus are themselves radically, categorically different.  Do they need a nexus between them? Infinite regress threatens.  This is where the deniers of difference and nexus wait to waylay me.  The monists, the Absolute Idealists, the lovers of the cave, and high up on the mountain the intellectual thugs of that divine Madman Nagarjuna.  I walk into the fray unafraid.  I exist a little frayed.  We are here in the outer marshes of thought.  And of Being.  I wade and wait.

 

 

 

4262  If the lie is the arbitrary, the out-of-the-blue, the jolt, then the untruthful sentence is the badly constructed, the unrhythmical, the lost path.  Philosophy and the Vedas rely and lie on the gentle waft, the wholesome grasp, the sure step out onto the Deccan of Summer's ionic presence.  The head slightly falls in acceptance.  Someone yields.

 

The morning scintillates. Eyes stare.  The Form is here again.  As so many times, ever again.  The end is at hand.  The grain of life drops.

 

 

 

4263  Young philosophers band together to fight a common enemy.  Though they are vying with each other to possess the title of Philosopher, they will have to wrestle that right from the older, transcendent Eminence Gris.  Momentarily, there will be strength in numbers.  In order to see the mechanism of that bonding we only have to look to Rene Girard and, of course, Freud.  Someone has to be sacrificed.  An arbitrary victim.  Daily stabbings.  Daily scapegoating.  Daily pointless talk to give assurances of one's worthiness and deserved acceptance.  To save the mother from the oppressive Father.  Who can we together kill today?  The brotherhood of killing priests.  Who will be the surrogate victim for that ritual today?  Who will remain standing at the end and be … Philosopher?

 

 

 

4264  3. "(The name "Speculative Realism") has now mutated, quite recently, into a sort of useful catch-all for all current trends in the school formerly known as continental philosophy that don’t fit into existing labels, but which have a generally realist flavor and are also just weird enough to be unassimilable to traditional boring schoolmaster realisms. (”There is a real world outside our mind. Deal with it.”) As I said in my DeLanda article, realism has usually been the boring enforcer in philosophy, the reality principle working against imaginative flights of fancy, bearing the same relation to speculative philosophy that health inspectors have to chefs: a sort of “critical” policing role. The strands loosely united under the name “speculative realism” are all bigger gambles than that." – Graham Harman.

 

Come on, guys.  I too love "flights of fancy", let's see it.  Or have you been gorging yourself on idle talk and now you just can't get off the ground?  Fat guys may like to gamble, but the time of gamboling is past.  Speculate!  Take your new specula into that spelunca ob-ject you so go on about.  What imaginative thing have you found there?  Is it dreamy?  Or has the boring enforcer called your Job been invading your billowy nights with that so assimilable,  ”There is a real world outside our mind. Deal with it."

 

 

 

4265  Consider a patch of roses and a nightingale.  Consider the twilight and a glove.  That scene is simple enough, but we also know it is complicated, very complicated.  Now consider a painter, and an ontologist.  A poet, an ornithologist/botanist and a gardener.  They all have different ways of looking at that scene when they are being true to what they are.

 

The last one mentioned will pick up his glove and worry about the work to be done.  So many things to do, so many arrangements to be made, so little time at the end of day.  The classifying scientist will think of all the possible ways of arranging these elements into species and genera, the phyla of flora and fauna, tables and charts.  The poet will think of symbols and their history and perhaps theories of reference, truth and meaning.  The painter will see splotches of color and the laying out of paint to give the feel of depth and motion - for him the world becomes pure sensa.  And the ontologist will think of … what?

 

How the ontologist sees the world is the topic I write.  Just as with the others above, you must turn your mind to see how they see the world.  So turn your mind in the ontological way and don't try to be all things to all people by thinking you are capturing the truth of life.  You will go after the ontological truth, not the everyday worker's truth or that of the scientist or artist.  There is a philosophical truth, which I will name Truth (or are you afraid of capital letters?).

 

The Realist of the Platonic sort will see instances of certain universal Forms, Rose and Flower, Nightingale and Bird, Glove and Tool and others.  He will see the bare particulars that are intimately tied to these Forms.  That tie or nexus he may call participation or exemplification.  He will see Number and Spatial Relation and Structure and Order and all the other ontological pieces that make up that scene.  And, of course, all the ontological (not scientific) pieces of the Act of perception and memory.  So many things.  The ontologist's realm is a garden of delights in its own right.  A lovely garden of love with the god in it.  Or maybe you have a different ontological view, one more like a desert or a factory or a discarded child's toy; what you see will still be after your own heart.

 

 

 

4266  Direct realism wants nothing to stand and thinks nothing does stand between the knowing mind and its object.  Does the mind want to go right to the object of its intention and not merely to receive word of it from a third party?  Some may be afraid of such close contact and fear loss of freedom in relation to it.  Perhaps any real presence is threatening.  Perhaps a certain absence is comforting.  So what is an idea?

 

Take the thought – This is a lovely evening.  Let's assume such thoughts exist.  What is the relation between that thought and the mind that thinks it?  It seems to me that that mind when thinking it IS it.  I am my thoughts. It is the same relation between this evening and the Form of Lovely Evening.  The former IS the latter.  It is that little word IS that is so bedeviling.  In these writings I have taken it to be the nexus between the particular and the Form.  And, thus, I have taken it to be the connection between my mind, me, and my thoughts.  And just as many particulars can share in the one Form of Lovely Evening, so can many minds share in the simple one Thought that – ' This is a lovely evening. ' 

 

The question remains: What is the connection between the thought, which I have become, and its object.  Surely it is not another thought and then another in infinite regress.  Surely it goes right to its object and it so very intimate with it.  It is that intimacy that is the nexus of intentionality.  So is that nexus a third party?  Is the nexus of Love itself a third party between two lovers?  No.  That's why love is so frightening to some and they fear its tyranny.  And look for distance.  The nexus brings Presence.

 

 

 

4267  Today I was having a friendly debate with a Vedantist about the notion of universals in Hindu philosophy.  We considered the paper napkins that were in the restaurant where we were sitting.  He said that the whiteness of the napkin certainly was an attribute and it could be said to exist.  The Napkin-ness of the napkin, however, was "only a concept" and certainly did not exist.  It seems to me that his ideas are probably shared by many today.  So what about that napkin-ness and, while we're at it, the napkin-holder-ness of the napkin-holder?  Do they exist?  Yes, they are universals shared by many.

 

Let's suppose they are "only concepts".  That solves nothing.  Two concepts that are the same, whether in one mind at different times or in different minds, must have something to ground their sameness.  Would that be a further concept?  Wouldn't regress, probably a vicious regress, set in?  Concepts are just propertied individuals shoved into the space of the imagination.  Once there the ontological questions begin again.  Or they don't and you think about something other than philosophy.

 

There is a non-modern, very startling notion of concept that may or may not be Vedanta.  It is that of Thomistic/Aristotelian abstraction.  Take one of those same napkins:  it is (hylomorphically) composed of Form and matter.  Now, mentally pull the form away from the matter and let it hang in your mind.  That is a concept.  It's rather beautiful, don't you think?  It is the boldness of the universal.  I don't think my Vedantist friend had that in mind.

 

 

 

4269  A Platonist in mathematics believes that the forms and formula of mathematics are discovered, not invented.  I am that.  I am that simply because that's what I want to be.  I believe that "all" of mathematics exists; though I'm a little shaky about just what "all" means here.  So I believe it all exists; it is complete.  And from Gödel we know that it is therefore not consistent.  And since the world has the form of that mathematics (I believe because I want to believe) it is therefore not consistent with itself.  Credo ut intelligam.  That seems to be the God of this world I know, love and fear.

 

 

 

4270  Continuing on with the idea from the previous post, namely that one believes because one wants to and credo ut intelligam, let me talk about intellectual masochists.  (It's frustrating that blogs are backwards.)  A hard-core materialist complains that my high-flying lush metaphysics is just simply a delusion.  He believes that we should all accept the hard, unpleasant facts about life.  That it is meaningless, going nowhere, and we are doomed to nothingness – or something like that.  Strangely enough, he seems to get some kind of kinky pleasure in contemplating that.  I say, Oh well, whatever trips your trigger.  The modern ascetic bangs around noisily in the night.

 

 

 

4271  An idea becomes great when it pervades the culture and it is no longer attached to a particular person.  Today I speak of Platonic Forms, but what I mean by that is determined by the Idea itself as it moves through history and culture and it is hardly connected to what Plato really thought.  We really have no idea what he really thought.  We know next to nothing about him.  We really don't care what he really thought.  And I suspect that in those cases where the idea remains closely attached to a person, it is only to a name and image that themselves have little or nothing to do with the actual man.  The name and the man are other.  The connection, it sees to me, isn't broken, but never was.  Ideas come and their sudden presence is a mystery even to their author.  Through him they were made big and thus the derivation of the word.  I am no more the origin of my ideas than I am the origin of the music if I turn up the volume on the radio.

 

 

 

4272  The Speculative Realist remains a reluctant positivist or, perhaps, reluctantly remains a positivist.  He hates the word.  He insists he is not that.  He fights it.  But he is that by dint of a very justified fear.  He wouldn't be a positivist if he could muster up the courage to enter into the dark translucence of the Object, the delight of Speculative Realism.

 

I remember a friend of mine from Boston.  We went out to a rock quarry swimming hole.  The water was still, deep and clear.  He went in.  But, because he had only known salt water swimming, he immediately began to sink and he had to fight his way back up.  Startled, he got out and waited a while and then went back.  The same thing took him.  He got out and never went back.  The water was Still, Deep and Clear.  It remained alluring, but deadly. 

 

The would-be Speculative Realist remains away from that secret spring, away from the nymph of vatic inspiration that lives there.  The madness.

 

Positivism is a fight against madness.  It insists on the clarity of science and empirical observation.  On the coherence of its sentences.  On the dominance of human reason and the hard-headed acceptance of fact.  It verifies.  No speculative diving or flying or wandering.  The positivist is a happy, civilized man without the wild eye of the night rover. 

 

 

 

4273  When vegetarianism becomes a philosophy then I have something to say about it.  If it is practiced simply because the person thinks it is more healthy or because he doesn’t like such cruelty to animals, then I have no comment.  If, however, he is trying to transcend Nature, then I will speak.  As I see it all living things live by killing.  Both plants and animals, big and small, strong and weak.  We living things are killers.  Now then, to hate that and to try and overcome it, or to simply deny that nature of ours, to not want to be a part of killing nature, that is fine with me and I wish the person luck in his transcending all that.  There is one thing, though, that I often do not like about such a vegetarian's explanation of his philosophy.  He says he wants a "natural" philosophy of pure immanence.  He thinks philosophies of Transcendence have almost destroyed the world.  He wants all living things to live in harmony without such a dominating, domineering unnatural Spirit forcing us into death.  As I see it that is all contradiction.  Is Nature not a killing machine after all?  Would it be all peace and harmony if man's political evil had not corrupted it?  Even children in their fairytales know that that is not true.  Is there peace to be found in submission?

 

 

 

4274  Every philosopher has, within his philosophy, a presiding deity.  I have the Boy.  Nietzsche had, Kohler has shown us in Zarathustra's Secret, a godly being not too different from the Boy.  The Greeks had Paglia's Beautiful Boy.  The monks had either the Surpassingly handsome Princely God of St. Francis, a stunning beauty, or a Virgin, a sort of goddess without the watery female plumbing, almost a Boy.  In any case the Boy is neither roughly masculine nor reproductively female and is thus a sort of androgynous being.  He is definitely not a social constructivist.  He tears things apart, like Billy Budd.  Kierkegaard had Regina, who almost destroyed him. 

 

Modern philosophy has had the domestic maiden.  Except that with the passing years her womanhood has advanced until in today's feminist philosophies she has become the biological Woman.  She now doesn't fit into philosophy well, or doesn't want to, and philosophy suffers and tries to become her earthly science.  Neither she nor the strongly virile creature works well in the thin abstractions of philosophy. 

 

What to do?  Sometimes in life you turn a corner and right there looking at you is a drop-dead beauty and you simply have to try and make your way past him on into the night. 

 

 

 

4275  History has given us great visions of reality, great structures of Being, and for the reader of history these terrible apparitions of Heaven and Hell all hang majestically before the mind's eye.  Some are totally still like that seen by Plato, Dante and Swedenborg.  Some have a circular movement as in the Hindu and Buddhist eternal rise and fall between the extremes.  Some have an eternal upward movement as in the Universalist vision.  Some have an eternal downward movement in the vision of all things succumbing to material disintegration.  All are full of the Poetic Pneuma.  How should we approach these visions?

 

It has been a constant philosophical thought in the past hundred years that there is an object-act distinction.  The object and the awareness of the object are two, not one.  And there has been an attempt by so many to immerse the act right into the object, to overcome the distinction.  How should we approach these visions?  Should we keep our distance and view them with only a momentary suspension of disbelief?  Or should be plunge right in and swallow the water in great gulps?

 

Today, there are a number of writers who say that we should plunge right into the material maelstrom and drown.  Total immanence.  Transcendence be gone!  No distinction, no distance, no disappointment at not having what never was.  Pure acceptance of our fate.  It's a vision of horrible, hellish beauty sinking magnificently down into the Negative Sublime.  Those who preach it think all other ways are delusion and cowardice.  And it is true that those who preach from out of the other realities, who see a different Object glaring at them, have to contend with the frightening stillness in the hanging structure.  Even it there is movement in that vision, it is a still repeating movement that never ceases.  All visions are fearsome.  Even the visions of great love bring disquiet.  We are in a dangerous place.  Scholarship is not for the timid.

 

 

 

4276  In the everyday world there are objects which act and objects which are acted upon.  That seems like commonsense.  It is commonsense.  And there are networks of activity.  Yes, of course.  The activity is ever in action and any stability perceived is merely a momentary equilibrium of forces.  It seems obvious.  It is Heraclitus and Darwin and Whitehead and Pater's Conclusion.  So what about traditional Parmenidean ontology where things rest in an absolute, other-worldly stillness?  The philosophical dispositions are vastly different.  And there is no reconciling third.  The philosopher raises his standard in one or the other camps.  He writes up this philosophical battle accordingly.  C'est la vie.  C'est la guerre.

 

The logicians stand with Parmenides.  This is a subject – predicate world.  One examines and analyzes logic and mathematics to find out the structure of Being.  Logic and Being are one.  One contemplates the marvel of its still workings as one contemplates the winter sky.  This God captures the philosopher by his sheer beauty.  The only movement is a shudder of knowing and a subtle seeing.  The Fire of Love has cut precisely.  The randomness of the infinite reveals oblivion.  The clasp of the conclusion is perfection.  There is only Presence.

 

The other is the commotion of the glorious everyday.  Magnificent problems to be solved, lovers work to build harmonious relations, households are set up, nations rattle against each other and come to agreement, students study, dinners are prepared, sleep comes to the tired and the morning comes in hope of a better day. 

 

The two camps eye each other warily.  Each wonders about the other, how such a thing could be.  But the battle may not last much longer because the Parmenidean camp is almost empty.  The logicians hardly believe in logic any more.  The battle they started up in force at Cambridge a little over a hundred years ago seems almost lost.  I only hold the flag.  Der Starke ist am mächtigsten allein.  C'est la vie.  C'est la guerre.

 

 

 

4277  The would-be modern followers of Heraclitus want to logically, clearly explain their position.  They are, after all, scholars who should be used to such orderly acts.  They want to lay out a network of words to match the Great Network of Reality.  They want the rush of life to be a part of what they write down.  They want their words to move energetically across the page, up the spine of the reader into his electrical brain and out into his vast soul or imagination or whatever it is.  They end up rather dull wits.  It's like the church parson trying to show he can life a leg in dance as well as the rest.  Don't look.

 

These guys want to do battle with the logicians and their subject-predicate view of things.  Logically doing battle with a logician is a losing game.  The only way the Heraclitus process guys can really get into their element is to abandon the schools and take up with the druggies.  But that won't work because they were probably druggies in their earlier life and now need a job.  Things have gotten all screwed in their thinking, which ain't no wonder.  Anyway they never were into dancing. They just wanted to view the light show behind their eyelids.

 

The Dionysian is still the Dionysian; the Apollonian is still the Apollonian.  One abandons subject-predicate logic at great risk. 

 

 

 

4278  Here is what is called, by some, The Ontic Thing as distinguished from the ontological things of metaphsics.

 

Let's say that Reality or Being is one tightly articulated Great Structure and that it is the act of consciousness to focus in on, to pick out this and that as pieces of that harmonious Whole.  Each piece it aims at will itself be an articulated structure, a sub-structure of other structures climbing all the way up to the ever-receding Great Structure.  There is, no doubt, no final simple thing that is the lowest, most basic thing, but all things reveal further structures on to oblivion.  Structures within structures within structures forever.  The complexity is overwhelming. 

 

Then that consciousness makes statements of the sort that say this and that (structure) belong to that and this (greater structure) and it all belongs to Reality (The Great Structure) or it doesn't.  Thus when I say "The tree is tall"  I am really talking about the presence of a structure (a tree) within another structure (a forest of trees) and a comparison which is another structure of structures.

 

This structure is a dynamic, energetic thing.  The pieces are not really static, dead things, but events that are living pieces of The One Thing.  The structural coming together is so lively that we are forced to say that the Whole is a Living Thing.  Process and Act are everywhere in the maelstrom that is Life.  We are overcome by its magnificence.  Boundaries collapse all about in the rush of existence and the One Thing is perfect in it exquisite unity.

 

The problem with all that is that it soon turns into a Dionysian frenzy, all order is lost and we are left with squalor and regret.  Then the Apollonian distinctions begin to be drawn.  The ontological things divide.  And classical stillness descends.

 

 

 

4279  It has been the desire of continental philosophy for centuries to explain away the Form of things in a great system of mathematical inter-relating.  Today it is Difference and Differance and Differentials Differentiating that does the trick, none of which is real, but only virtual and so very hard to see, much less grasp.  We are left with ghosts and wraiths and life-sucking jargon-vampires.  And like the Buddhists with their Apoha, continental philosophy has become so over-intellectualized that only a poet of fine abstractions could love it.  Now and forever more, a spidery reticulum strains and restrains the mind.  Our hands feel about for subterranean Objects and the act-ual objectiles (or whatever the mot de jour is) hanging on them like carbuncles.  Needless to say, this philosophy, now and then, has an itch to give up its name and become something else, even, God forbid, a science, but more differences will have to be drawn out first.  Oh, I long for water, once again, to be just water, for the sky to be the blue sky, for red lips to be just that, for a touch to be a touch.  I want the world to come back!  I want a thing to be simply what it is.  I want the Form I see and feel to be real.

 

The fine abstractions of continental philosophy have taken on the lurid hue of a Dionysian cutting frenzy.  The young student is left bleeding on his dorm room floor.  He tried to tame the Minotaur.  The labyrinth closed up. 

 

 

 

4280  I am not an Other.  I am Gary Smith.  I am not a virtual being in a great inter-relating web of differences.  I am not a differential, a difference deferred, a reflection reflected, a fine filament in a gossamer web of com-prehension.  I am Gary Smith.  I am not an Other, an ethical object of care, a socially articulated ego, a goose.  I am Gary Smith.  I insist that when another sees me he is seeing me and he is not a consciousness perceiving garysmithly.  I am not a garysmith-precept.  I am not an abbreviation for an unthinkably complex psycho-linguistic-techno-historical-bio-evolved-quantum mess.  I am Gary Smith.  Talk to me as just that.  Good Morning.

 

 

 

4281  I suppose the real reason I dropped out of school was because I felt a soft, unwholesome guilt about my love of attack in philosophical argument.  I could easily have taken up all the time in class.  I spent most of my time restraining myself and keeping quiet.  I couldn't stand it; I simply left.  And now there is even less of an appetite for argument among the younger students and their junior professors.  It seems they all just want to get along.  A sort of mutual admiration society.  No testosterone.

 

 

 

4282  Speculative realism wants to speak about the unreachable other thing, the object beyond, the thing that is ever gone, only momentarily reflected in the specula of your consciousness, leaving you alone, not that.  This is the non-phenomenal.  And if philosophy is phenomenology, the non-philosophical.  That thing of which we have only a vague idea.  The everyday things of the world, darkly banging out there.  This is the hell of Milton's Satan, of things separated in the vast expanse.  Unable to be found.  Purely other. Where object escapes knowing.

 

I am not an unreachable, unknown other.  I am not other.  I am standing before you in plain sight, fully seen and present.  This is the light; there is no darkness here.  You understand me perfectly.  I do not leave for another unseen place.  I am not secretly thinking of someone somewhere else.  I am fully in your knowing.  I am right here.  I am not other.

 

 

 

4283  This is an attempt to get back to the original impulse that energized the words of philosophy. Thus it is a sort of Destruktion as Heidegger would have it, except that it is an origin that he, without doubt, would not have accepted. I skirt around the ready-to-hand of the average everyday.  I dive into Presence.  I live the ontological, not the hidden objects that are there with our being-in-the-world.  I am not in-the-world.  At the beginning of philosophy, when the ontological things that are very present-to-hand first shown forth, the Boy, this god, was an enchanter.  The whole of metaphysics was an attempt to capture that.  The world as an object of care was left behind.  Ontotheology took over.  The immediacy of his existence was overwhelming. 

 

You do not overcome the calcified words of philosophy by jumping into the everyday.  But by jumping away from the everyday into this intense eroticism.  Up the Scala Paradisi.  Encountering the descending god.  This sexual prosopon, the exquisite Form, that helped the Greeks escape the Medusa of the earth.

 

 

 

4284  Any philosophy that gives pride of place to objects, to ontic things, and not to the ontological elements that assay the object loses all feel for the momentous differences that streak through Being.  The end result is a mush.  A confusion.  A philosophical blur.

 

This descent toward nominalism began with Aristotle when he elevated substance over the other categories of Being. Eventually those other things faded into the nothingness of just words and mere conceptual traces.  In strong positivism, they became slanderous calumny against reality, the work of the decaying minds of intellectual devils.  Philosophy became suspect.

 

Today's Speculative Realists don't go all the way, but though they do give nodding acknowledgement to all the philosophers that have gone before, they end up ignoring them and have only (allusions to) substance as object, never mentioning the other categories of Being, except to call them an unjust Parmenidean elevation of the human.  They seem to love the biographical context in which philosophy was written, hoping in that to find its meaning there.  I suspect Speculative Realism will soon lose even the object, except as its dim memory in the Lives of the Philosophers.

 

 

 

4285  Heidegger wanted to take his followers back to Being.  The old ideas of metaphysics had become hard and deadly.  He took them back to the everyday world outside the classroom into the fields of life.  He put the thinkers back with the people, the workers, the families of care.  He led them into unknowing.  Perhaps into a mystical knowing.  Today the Internet is full of Heideggerians, young and old, bored and maybe guilty about their academic life, who are trying, with his words, to be in-the-world. They really want to express a solidarity of care with the people.  Repeating repeating repeating those words hoping to get at the nub of real existence he saw up ahead back in the past.  Time strangles itself.  The heat of war burns.  His words have long been reduced to ash.

 

Heidegger's vision was not as good as that of Whitman, who also wanted to find the common man, the democratic man.  Who also wanted to be with the people and the things of the people.  Both were a recluse away from life and its hardships.  Their thoughts were far away in mystical contemplation of the ordinary and lifted up into the Ordinary.  An unwanted apotheosis.  The vision was short-lived and then sank back into the average everydayness of things.  And the followers have tried but failed to resuscitate it.  The great pile of words get in the way.  And the monastery of the everyday man soon crumbles. 

 

The followers of Heidegger are all academics who really do know the toil and the average everydayness of the scholar.  A dreary existence with flashes of burning insight and then the horrible nothing again.  That really is the life of being-in-the-world.  They sink into Being and suffocate.  A paradoxical, mystical knowing? The question of Being.

 

 

 

4286  Ontologically speaking, an object is not a thing.  A thing is, ontologically speaking, a simple element of Being.  An object is, categorically, a complex.  The difference between simple and complex is basic to ontology.  Both are existents, but only the simple is an ontological thing.  For example, a Form is a thing, a bare particular is a thing, the nexus of exemplification is a thing, the fact that is the exemplification of the Form by the particular is a complex.  A fact is ontologically different from the things that constitute it.  A fact cannot be eliminated in favor of its constituents.  Fact and thing are ontologically very different, both must find a place in any adequate ontology, and fact, though an existent, cannot be a simple thing.  The mind warps trying to imagine it.  Then the complex that is the fact being constituted by "its" things is magnificently overwhelming, but somehow there.

 

As with fact and thing, so with structure or active networks or sets and classes, or mental acts or any other complexity.  The complexity is an existent without being a thing.  To make any of those a simple thing is to lose the elements and blur the differences within Being.  Then the game is lost.  The transcendent unity of complexities must be acknowledged.  To think that that is not a thing is stupefying.  To think Being is wild.

 

 

 

4287  The beautiful being within the vision of Parmenides is the sharp line of distinction.  The clean separation.  The still difference.  The fusing and melting shapes of the world are cast aside.  The clear openness is revealed.  The rain has passed and we walk along the well-lined fields.  The smooth wood of the erect post and the perfection that blows gently.  The conclusion is at hand ready for the taking.  Then mere life is overcome.  But the Many find no pleasure in it.

 

 

 

4288  The Age of Consciousness turning with the Age of Objects

 

Consider these two objects – the island of Manhattan and the Empire State Building.  There is a certain massive darkness in their existence.  They also act on each other in equally massive and dark ways.  And both sense that great unknown, maybe unknowable acting.  That is the real of a kind of realism.  Huge content, meager form.  I go the other way.

 

Consider my friend Jerry, a big man, literate and older.  And Tim, a slight, sprightly boy, who dances and combs his hair.  Both have their nature and their appearance.  Jerry seems to have more that doesn't appear.  Tim has movement and naked openness.

 

Consider food.  Jerry eats.  Time munches.  Jerry knows food as object and nutrition.  Tim knows it as taste and fun.

 

Consider all the phantasmagoria that appear before your mind's eye on the screen.  Consider the glitter and excitement of your new gadgets.  Tim is as happy with that as you are.  Jerry loves the great old things of history – the Empire State Building, the Parthenon, Rembrandt, Othello.  I usually sit with Tim, he intensely raises my erotic temperature.  Jerry and his talk are heavy and too substantial.  Jerry is this-world Object.  Tim is other-world, angelic intensity.  Make your choice.   De gustibus non est disputandum.  Live in the Manhattan of steel, concrete and revered Art.  Or live in the lights and excitement of Broadway and eyes glittering as they pass by.

 

 

 

4289  I am an unrepentant dualist.  In this place we are spirit tied to the chthonic.  But the tie is not so strong that it cannot be broken.  And the spirit flies free.  The freedom, though, is frightening.  And the many want to simply lie down and sleep.

 

I am a Form.  I become this and that.  From out of eternity, I have become in my becoming ever again… and again.  There is no end to it.  I come from out of eternity.  All Forms are in this eternal becoming.  And they remain in eternity.  The escape from the chthonic always was.  The spirit flies free.  Again.

 

The Form is tight within itself.  The chthonic is slow dissolution.  The formless threatens the well-formed.  The Form is intense.  Too intense.  The loosening of formlessness promises relief.  The nothing seems welcome.  The Form escapes into existence.

 

 

 

4290  Here are two scenes:

 

1.    Imagine, or draw on a piece of paper, a square, a circle and a triangle of slightly different sizes. 

 

2.    Imagine, or draw on a piece of paper, three squares of more or less equal size.

 

The first image is filled with difference and an almost energetic inter-relating.  It is a socially active group with each piece giving definition to the others.  We could say that one "observes" the goings-on.

 

The second group is the stillness of the same.  The one Form is simply with the number three.  Difference recedes and the One Thing is present.  There is no active inter-relating.  Only each individual goes to meet the one Form.  Social inter-action is nowhere.  We do not observe, but contemplate the still presence.  It is still presence, not active otherness, that defines this scene.

 

You will choose which scene you like best.  De gustibus non est disputandum.   

 

 

 

4291  If I say that ontological statements are a matter of clear and distinct violence, I cannot prove my point with hesitant citings of evidence lifted gently from a text.  Its truth is immediately present or it is nothing.  Such clarity and distinctness are transcendental things.  As is the immediate and presence.  Thus they are divine.  We know them intimately in a perfect knowing.  There is nothing meek in that knowing.  We need not defer to anyone.  It is not partial or merely promissory.  It is violence to our wanting to wait and be sure.  It is now.  We are at risk in the world.

 

 

 

4292  We stand belatedly in the great Tradition of philosophy.  It is a daemonic thing.  A spirit moves inexorably through it.  I have at times called it Eros, Jesus, Yahweh, Philosophy, or Desire.  In its strange beauty, its frightful love of man, it mangles the mind of the one who would be a philosopher.  Only the pathetic word "madness" will do.  We are in thrall to that.  The philosopher does his best to fight it.  It is usually a sad sight to see.  And a sickness.

 

I have tried to understand the words I write, and I have succeeded in giving them many interpretations, but I can't really see their meaning.  They may have none.  I shudder.  I am in love with that twisted thing.  I am finally that. Make anything of them you will.  You too are in the maelstrom of this too perfect wisdom.  The blade falls.

 

 

 

4293  By his own admission, Bloom has troped our struggle with the daemonic forces of Tradition into the defensive psychological mechanism against the anxiety of influence.  That is the way of all philosophy and all dealings with the Holy Other.  The frightening thing must be controlled.  Heavy wine and its lees must be changed into clear, running water.  Love must become care.  The Logos is transformed into logic and Being into thing and entity, because we forget that Thing and Entity are themselves pieces of gods slamming through what was once the soul.  Before we tried to change soul into consciousness.

 

Because the beings of the Real are too strong and too hair-raising, we psychologize them and technologize them and socially domesticate them into traces, because we are weak.  We familiarize them, forgetting that the human family is a romance that is equally daemonic and to be troped, that is to say, repressed at any cost.  The holy is everywhere and the attempt to not see it.

 

Nature is a horror and it is the job of poetry to turn it with metaphor.  Almost any metaphor will do; we are capable of imagining the most drastic reduction.  The Horror is easily changed into the prettiest pieces of forgetfulness.  Moreover, it is the job of smiling academia to show us that the ghosts of life are nothing.  All is just an old clock.  It will soon run down and quiet will prevail throughout the house.

 

See that object over there?  It is not the frightening Object thrown against you in your bad dreams; it is only a bright technical wonder.  It fits so nicely and pleasantly in with its friends, the other objects.  Nothing looms threateningly.  Nothing holds a secret abyss.  Only you are the abyss and you can pass it before the morning light.  You are a marvelous trope machine.  Have a nice day.

 

 

 

4294  It often happens that some young philosopher, in an unguarded moment, actually writes down the terror he has tried to repress.  It scares him when he later realizes what he has done. He has to, he simply must undo the words.  And he must not let himself see that the undoing is taking place.  He will go back to his usual way of twisting the truth into a concern about some purely formal worldly concern, such as linguistics or economics or politics or ecology.  He will become socially responsible and, above all, helpful.  The dreadful thing will be leveled in the bland complexity of the everyday.  

  

Our world, outside the niceness of learned civilization, is a daemonic presence.  So we will look for a philosophy of absence and be forced to look away.  We want to be transported on the wings of the always deferred.  Later, when we have time, a proper analysis can be done.  Which is to say, a greater fortress against the things of the Holy Other, can be built.  Not now.  Now is the time for flat logic. 

 

The terror, the Holy Thing, is so very easy to understand.  Its presence is undeniable.  It is a mare that must be ridden.  And right there, the massive entanglement of texts and commentary and polite conversation are so impossible as to be a great relief and That is evaded.  The young hang out and talk on into the night so securely with each other.  Each secretly knowing something is wrong.  

 

 

 

4294  The great dualism in Des Cartes is between extension and intension.  A book has length, but it must have unity to be read.  The set that is a city has the many, but to be in an ordered world it itself must have a first and a second.    The prairie has expanse but, to be a place we can understand and live within, it must have must have a central point of coordination.  In pure extension all things become lost from each other.  Things fall apart.  The Form is gone.  The world has vast openness, but we struggle to find the one place, the first thing.  The dialectic of the One and the many consumes us.  The madness.

 

There are those who, feeling the difficulty, even the impossibility of the dialectic, want to somehow derive the identity of the One from the cut of pure otherness.  They write books that revel in controlled disunity.  The center is lost with glee.  Surely, they surmise, in the receding terror of the dark night of the soul, en La Noche Oscura, the beloved will appear.  And a holy oblivion will overcome us.  But their control is out of control.  And everything is as it should be.

 

 

 

4295  As long as philosophy has been around there have been those who actively work to destroy something they find detestable in it.  The anti-metaphysical, anti-philosophical, anti-Platonic spirit has been furious.  They have tried to trope, to turn that thing, whatever it is, into clean science.  Religion has suffered the same fate.  Perhaps philosophy and sacrificial religion are the same thing.  Religion today is no more than the social and the ethical.  Philosophy is linguistics, economics, video games - anything but metaphysics. What was it that was so hated?  Is it, even now, a sexual fear; is it the super-ego fighting something forbidden, some libidinous threat?  Why has the high, Protestant seriousness of modern academia taken root so forcefully?  Were the idols clamoring?  Surely these workers will not succeed.  Man will always be the Stranger walking among the objects of the world.

 

 

 

4296  Just as it is the art of writing to make the discontinuous be the continuous.  So it is to make the purely contingent be the necessary next thing.  The radically different things of Being become each the other that is the blinding envy of lovers.  This intense unity of Being is no more that the eternally separate.  That I acted because of a spur on the moment, a goad, an itch, is no more than to say that I acted out of serene necessity.  That I acted then as I must act is surely just a whim and a recklessness.  Such is art.

 

It is the writer's art to turn radical contingency on the smooth white skin of a slender thigh that has been lying beside you from eternity.  He hardly moves at all.  You are wild with impulse and constraint but that is only the perfection of this ever repeating moment. 

 

 

 

4297  There are many today who assert that the self does not exist, that it is simply a "construct".  Surely the word "simply" is not right here; it is indeed a complex complexity, they insist.  And it simply doesn't exist.  As an entity, a real object, or as an enduring thing or any kind.  And somehow all that is wonderful.

 

They overlook the "constructedness" of all the other objects of the world.  Does the object that is the body, the brain, the social network, exist?  Do organisms of any sort, biological or social or linguistic, exist?  Is there any unity there of which we could say it is an entity?  Surely not, if the argument against the existence of the self is correct and true.  Should we revel in that?

 

Is radical non-existence our goal?  It seems that for Nagarjuna and the Madyamika Buddhists it is.  I love the extreme daring of Nagarjuna.  He is simply honest.  He has the courage of his convictions.  He is divinely mad.  The many today pretend sanity and I suppose they are, but they are not honest or, finally, radical enough.

 

 

 

4298  Capital, whether gold or abstract money, must be easily divisible, the pieces must be uniform within themselves and uniformly the same with each other.  I have gathered that much from the classical economists.  That divisibility and uniformity and self-identity is the ground of its value.  It is pure quantity.  The opposite is quality.  Such divisibility and uniformity and pure quantity is very much like the Materia Prima of Aristotle.  It is the stuff of the real.  It has weight and effect.  It is capital.  It will not be denied. 

 

The pure materialist wants to reduce everything to capital.  He is the absolute capitalist.  He will not brook the uniqueness and indivisibility and intractable difference of quality.  He denies that quality exists.  Only matter and thus capital.  Matter, capital, weight, inertia, work is the regulator, the controller, the value giver.  It works invisibly.  It transcends the senses.  It is what we ponder incessantly. 

 

Matter is transformed from one thing into another.  It is the magician of change. It is what abides and remains the invisible body throughout.  It is the stuff of dreams.  It is the lamp of Aladdin.  It is the guiding hand.  It is the power of Capital.  It IS Capital.

 

 

 

4299  For much of the twentieth century there was a great concern to describe the meaning structures that all things are caught us within.  That meaning structure was seen to be Man's creation.  It was Man himself.  Therefore, the man-object relation was paramount.  It was the ground of being for the known world.  But now Man is being taken out of the picture, or at least demoted, and meaning structures, or some very similar networks of connectedness, are permitted to stand alone.  You could say that before there were two realms: Man's meaning structures and the meaningless individuals inertly existing away from Man.  Now, that division has been abolished and the meaning structures (or some kind of semiotic network) are all there is – man and inert individuals having become mere dependent sub-elements within the system, hardly existing at all. 

 

Networks are finally made out of these mere things, these weak almost no-things, and delicate tendrils of slight connectedness.  It is like lacework.  Fine threads that seem to want to disintegrate at the mere touch.  Nothings.  But together little islands of quasi-strength, painted actors, seem to appear and somehow manage to survive for a time.  If you have a taste for fine filaments delicately interwoven, you will appreciate all this.  It has its charm.  Man's brutishness is gone.  Or has become just that.  I suppose some see this as an advance into a more elevated existence.  Surely we are headed into greater delicacy.  It's like old age.

 

 

 

4300 Art is exaggeration.  That statement may be itself an exaggeration, but it is true, or at least True.  Philosophy is also art, or it is nothing.  And religion.  And being in love is, as Freud said, an over-estimation of the Beloved.  So there you are.  Let's get on with it and not try to belittle ourselves.  We are big.  We are all artists and philosophers and religious fanatics.  And furious lovers.  Even those who would stomp on your sex rod and extinguish the flame are enthusiasts in their campaign out on the fields of the impossible.

 

I have written up the Great Platonic Forms.  Surely they are an exaggeration and the Joy of life.  Today there are those who write up the Object and see in it the allure of the coming-at-us Real.  The Object, to be of interest to us, must be made Big. It must loom and threaten.  It must bring in with it the Sublime.  It is the welcome End of deconstruction.  The Rod of Righteousness winks.  It acts out and Up.

 

 

4302 Graham Harman writes: "But the point of Heidegger’s philosophy is not to classify different types of entity, even if he slips into that language himself sometimes. The point is to define ready-to-hand and present-at-hand as two ways of being, and I have tried to show why any entity, including Dasein, must have both modes. Namely, an object can exist in its own right, or can exist in truncated and caricatured form in the experience of another object."

 

I immediately think of Harold Bloom and the Gnostics.  Is Harman a Gnostic?  All objects leave their own being and become a poetic trope in the experience of another object.  It becomes art in the other. 

 

 Being is entity.  Being has modes.  One mode is the entity existing in its own right.  Another is the entity existing in a truncated and caricatured form in the experience of another object.

 

An entity exists in its own proper form in itself or in a perverted form not its own in the experience of another object.  When one object interprets another, it misinterprets it.  When one object is translated into another, a mistranslation takes place.  This is a trope, a turning, a deviation.  Entities exist under both modes. One mode is true to the object; the other is untrue.  Spin.  Spin. Spin.  Perhaps that is art.  Art is untruth.  We devise a way out of the horrible Truth.  Or have I mis-understood?  Have I exaggerated this interpretation of Heidegger?  Was it necessary that I do so?  Surely Heidegger's writings are all just a misinterpretation of philosophy.  The tropes pile up.  For our own safety we devise a way out of horrible Truth.

 

 Still, these are only modes and not different entities.  Modes flit by and they are almost nothing.  Being remains impassive to truth and untruth.  It just is.  Our interpretations of it, our understanding of it, our ramming our head at it amounts to truly nothing.  Or have I waylaid myself uselessly?  Maybe I have here devised a secret way out.

 

If all experience is a trope, for whatever reason, then we are all poets.  The question remains, Is there a way out of our predicament?  Must we always waylay ourselves on the way?  Can the Truth be known?  Can Being be known?  All of which is to say, Can God be known and be intimately with us?  Or is Truth, Being, and God always a receding Beyond?  Islam and perhaps the Calvinists believe it is so.  Only the Sufis, the charismatic Christians and perhaps Plotinus believe we have a chance to arrive at that final thing to see and be seen face to face.

 

Perhaps there are only tropes and tropes of tropes and there is not the thing-in-its-own-right.  This would destroy Harman's realism – or would it?  I think of myself as a realist, but as opposed to nominalist.  I am a very naïve realist.  Some tropes are actual and some potential.  There is no thing-in-its-own-right.  God is the turning itself.  Art is not evil or less than Being itself.  The modes are rather real entities themselves - Universals.  I see the entity as entity.  It turns in the Spirit.  

 

 

 

4303 If there is to be a sacred place, a place where sacrifice is performed, where there is killing, then that place must be guarded, not so much in order to keep the riffraff out, but to protect the outside from the terror that takes place within.  The place is marked.  The apotropaic lingam is revealed, the stake to tie the victim on.  The thing thrown in the way, the hindrance behind, the ob-ject.  You, the re-jected.  The priest enters and sees what is to be seen. Theoria. The hidden knife.  And he performs.

 

The sacred is that which is cut off.  It is not a part of the whole.  It has no reason or purpose within the whole.  Every relating of it to the whole leaves a neglected remainder.  It doesn't fit.  It is a separate thing.

 

The killing in the sacrifice must be pointless.  The victim must be innocent.  And after the event he must lie there alone ever dead. There is no appeal.  It roams in the void, unattended.

 

Sacrifice is itself the guilty thing.  Our own guilt piles into it.  It cannot be brought into the fold.  It is outside.  It is gone.

 

This is the separation that realism knows.  It is not a gentle thing.

 

 

4304 Existential anxiety is not a state we enter when we become aware of our possible non-existence.  It is the awareness of our necessary eternal existence.  Non-existence, for us, is impossible. There is no way out.  That is the metaphysics that is so feared by the modern man.  So hated.  So heavily ridiculed.  He is filled with anxiety because of it.

 

The truly existential man is the one who wills existence, eternal existence.  Unrelenting.  The lover who will not leave.  Who cannot leave.  Beauty unable to not be.

 

That Form has been with you forever and will be.  That arm, that cheek, that gaze.

 

But the dialectic is here.  Surely for many, such eternal existence is the apotropaic substance, the dead charisma of non-existence. For some it is the religious shudder, the Horripilation.  It is Truth.

 

 

4305 "The differences among some of the several existents are very great indeed.  I, for one, would not hesitate to call them momentous, or enormous.  That, I submit is a major source of the resistance serious ontology has always met.  For these differences are much greater than most are prepared to face."  Gustav Bergmann.

 

Today's vicious attack on Cartesian dualism is the case in point.  Monism of every sort is comfortable.  It is social harmony. It is a place away from the separation that has caused so much anguish.  It has no truth to defend; everything is charmingly untrue.  The flow flows.  Argument has no weight.  Nothing has weight.  This philosophical fundamentalism sweetly resists without pressure.  It kills while laying its victim down to sleep.

 

Nonchalant, helpful, ecologically friendly, the monist, so concerned, bows in a cloud of unknowing before the dark cave of reality.  The shuddering has stopped.  He enters peaceably.  The enormity awaits.  And the cleavers.

 

Differences are real.  Dualism stands.

 

 

4306  These are the same guys who put to death Socrates, a grey vampire if there ever was one.

 

Graham Harman writes, "Contrast this with the grey vampire type… Grey vampires actually function even better one-on-one than in groups. They suck energy by twisting every step in a conversation into some new obstacle, some new faked uncertainty about something or other.

 

But the key point is to remember that philosophical discussion occurs between people, not between disembodied arguments. If you feel your energy level decreasing regularly when spending time in discussion with someone, I would recommend writing them off. Perhaps you can read an article of theirs now and then and learn from it, but if you feel your energy level dropping, there’s a good bet it’s deliberate on their part, even if not quite conscious. The condition of human interchange has to be warmth, or bad things are most likely bubbling beneath the surface. Warmth is simply too easy and too inherently rewarding to be avoided unless there are less-than-clean motivations for doing so."

 

Today the universities, philosophical cafes and the late-night blogosphere are filled with Heideggerians trying to rip the uneasy spirit right out of Heidegger.  The spirit of Kierkegaard.  They are not to be blamed, though, because Heidegger himself was trying to do the same thing.  That is to say, Heidegger was trying his best to overcome that sickness unto death his true precursor  laid out in stark solitude, Heidegger's  one obsession.  Anxiety.

 

Anxiety is man's dark glory.  It is his road to Being and truth.  To himself.  But these guys are trying to make us forget all that in the warmth of human agreement and helpfulness.  The distortion of the good life that is ontological thinking is waylaid.  In ontic unrelatedness we find virtual networks of happy togetherness.  We forget that we are broken.  In the whole we are made whole.  In the hole we will lie down in the magical Maya of love.  Philosophical collapse will never happen.  The force will always be with us.  Our energy will not drop.  Kierkegaard will be unread.

 

The Spirit is Anxiety.  Ontology is dreadful.  Existence glares at us unrelenting.

 

 

 

 

4306  In my last posting, I mentioned that I thought Socrates was a grey vampire if there ever was one.  “Grey vampire” was a designation that I got from reading Graham Harman’s blog and he, apparently, got it from K-Punk, who is someone or something I know nothing about.   I really don’t know the “true” meaning of the “grey vampire”.  Maybe I misused the words, so let me say that what I understood by it was someone who ”pretends to follow along with your argument, but always comes up with some … reservation at the last second.”  He does it, not for the sake of the witnesses around or for the sake of winning an argument in some “niggling” sort of way, but because he is making a sort of impish dialectical maneuver.  That dialectic is Platonism.  Maybe Deconstruction.  I love Socrates.

 

As for being a vampire, Walt Whitman was a vampire in that, as a nurse, he hovered over the wounded and dying young men in the field hospitals of the civil war.  I love the erotic Walt Whitman.  Socrates hovered over his “wounded and dying” listeners in the same way.  As for being grey, it is the silent reserve of the lover.  As for being impish, he is like Yahweh, in the J verses of the Bible. And he is, of course, Silenius, a … I think you can imagine an old lover of boys.  I am that and I love Socrates.  I also love the Jesus of the gospels.  He is mainly a whiner and a complainer, who in his boyhood, according to the apocryphal gospels, was a holy terror, who said nothing original, and who in no way looked or acted at all like a god.  (Kierkegaard would understand.)    Jesus didn’t hover; he just wanted to get away and get it over with.  I love Jesus.

 

As for Graham Harman, I don’t know him at all.  That is to say I know of him only what can be found on the Internet.  Now that I am back in the US, I can get his books from the library and I’ll see where that leads me.  My image of him now is that he is a very nice guy.  I have no doubt but that he is a great school teacher and that his students really like him and that they learn a lot from him.  He will put up with a lot but some people waste his time and he hates it.  It’s all understandable.  Now for his philosophy, Object Oriented Speculative Realism.  I have my doubts about it.  I suspect it is only nominalism.  Nominalism always leads to idealism: as it did with Husserl. Still, I too love and respect Husserl as well as Malebranche, another one who succumb to the idealism that is always nominalism’s unavoidable end.  I will follow along with OOP SR and him, but I suspect that at the last moment I will spy a little “mistake” which will completely turn his philosophy upside down.  That is dialectic.  We all succumb to it somewhere and then the anxiety of coming undone rears up.  The grey vampire of reversal loves us.  It’s a lover we cannot avoid.  It is the mole on the cheek of beauty. 

 

So, am I a grey vampire?  Yes, we all are as philosophers; though as helpful school teachers we have to beware of letting that impish spirit of philosophy possess us. 

 

Graham also mentions having a project.  That is academic stuff and not from the heart of philosophy, which is anything but academic.  Neither Socrates nor Jesus nor Whitman nor Kierkegaard had a project.  It is absurd to think they did.  Heidegger may have, but he, in my book, is only a marvelous magician with the words of the German language.  (I too love etymology.)  He was not impish enough to be a philosopher, not erotic enough.  He was a school teacher obsessed with Kierkegaard, which ain’t a bad thing to be. 

 

As for my postings, you must know that no one reads my blog.  No one has ever read my book, which is my obsession and a writing against my well-laid plans for something much more sensible.  (It’s most certainly not “my project”.)  I write for the angels.  The boy pictures, i gnudi, that decorate my blog are herms, apotropaic forces to keep away the same riffraff that so bother Graham Harman.  

 

The most we can hope for in philosophy is to be a glorious failure and avoid being a miserable success. 

 

 

 

4307 In my last posting, I mentioned that I thought Socrates was a grey vampire if there ever was one.  “Grey vampire” was a designation that I got from reading Graham Harman’s blog and he, apparently, got it from K-Punk, who is someone or something I know nothing about.   I really don’t know the “true” meaning of the “grey vampire”.  Maybe I misused the words, so let me say that what I understood by it was someone who ”pretends to follow along with your argument, but always comes up with some … reservation at the last second.”  He does it, not for the sake of the witnesses around or for the sake of winning an argument in some “niggling” sort of way, but because he is making a sort of impish dialectical maneuver.  That dialectic is Platonism.  Maybe Deconstruction.  I love Socrates.

As for being a vampire, Walt Whitman was a vampire in that, as a nurse, he hovered over the wounded and dying young men in the field hospitals of the civil war.  I love the erotic Walt Whitman.  Socrates hovered over his “wounded and dying” listeners in the same way.  As for being grey, it is the silent reserve of the lover.  As for being impish, he is like Yahweh, in the J verses of the Bible. And he is, of course, Silenius, a … I think you can imagine an old lover of boys.  I am that and I love Socrates.  I also love the Jesus of the gospels.  He is mainly a whiner and a complainer, who in his boyhood, according to the apocryphal gospels, was a holy terror, who said nothing original, and who in no way looked or acted at all like a god.  (Kierkegaard would understand.)    Jesus didn’t hover; he just wanted to get away and get it over with.  I love Jesus.

As for Graham Harman, I don’t know him at all.  That is to say I know of him only what can be found on the Internet.  Now that I am back in the US, I can get his books from the library and I’ll see where that leads me.  My image of him now is that he is a very nice guy.  I have no doubt but that he is a great school teacher and that his students really like him and that they learn a lot from him.  He will put up with a lot but some people waste his time and he hates it.  It’s all understandable.  Now for his philosophy, Object Oriented Speculative Realism.  I have my doubts about it.  I suspect it is only nominalism.  Nominalism always leads to idealism: as it did with Husserl. Still, I too love and respect Husserl as well as Malebranche, another one who succumb to the idealism that is always nominalism’s unavoidable end.  I will follow along with OOP SR and him, but I suspect that at the last moment I will spy a little “mistake” which will completely turn his philosophy upside down.  That is dialectic.  We all succumb to it somewhere and then the anxiety of coming undone rears up.  The grey vampire of reversal loves us.  It’s a lover we cannot avoid.  It is the mole on the cheek of beauty. 

So, am I a grey vampire?  Yes, we all are as philosophers; though as helpful school teachers we have to beware of letting that impish spirit of philosophy possess us. 

Graham also mentions having a project.  That is academic stuff and not from the heart of philosophy, which is anything but academic.  Neither Socrates nor Jesus nor Whitman nor Kierkegaard had a project.  It is absurd to think they did.  Heidegger may have, but he, in my book, is only a marvelous magician with the words of the German language.  (I too love etymology.)  He was not impish enough to be a philosopher, not erotic enough.  He was a school teacher obsessed with Kierkegaard, which ain’t a bad thing to be. 

As for my postings, you must know that no one reads my blog.  No one has ever read my book, which is my obsession and a writing against my well-laid plans for something much more sensible.  (It’s most certainly not “my project”.)  I write for the angels.  The boy pictures, i gnudi, that decorate my blog are herms, apotropaic forces to keep away the same riffraff that so bother Graham Harman.  

The most we can hope for in philosophy is to be a glorious failure and avoid being a miserable success.

 

 

4308 For those of us who write philosophy, tradition, what has been given to us, weighs heavy. Moreover, not only what we receive from the past, but also what we receive from those other writers in the present presses down. And of course, we imagine the thoughts of all those who will read us in the future. It is a suffocating, ponderous gift. I begin writing and all those others rear up and hover close – too close. They loom and I am suddenly caught on the loom of history. I must do something so as not to be crushed.

We all feel that. There are many ways to deal with it. I will here describe one that I think is popular today. It’s a way that is very common in movies for the young. When the monster appears, we calm down greatly when we see that he or she has very human, very familiar, problems, gestures, needs. That he wants to go home and be with others like him. That he cries and laughs and worries. In other words, if we humanize the monster. Take all those other hovering, looming ghosts that are time’s other philosophers. Let me call them Vampires because they can suck the energy right out of you, because they move in close to your most vulnerable part. You have no creative space. Take away the grey, twilight around them. Put oxygen back in place in your own red blood. Laugh with their released new form and gently talk about very human concerns. Become involved with them in the wonderful complexity we call life. Have real being along with them.This is the modern trick we perform. We humanize them, so as not to be killed by these monsters of our belatedness, history's gift.

These Grey Vampires of time have become The Forms.The Intelligible Universals. Each is a Platonic Eidos. A shudder and a presence. We understand intimately the place where we are. The Thing that is at our throat. And we seek to kill it. Or we cannot write.

The stench of this dead God is now everywhere. Tradition is a daemonic thing.

So what are these hoary presences from the past? What is Socrates and Jesus and Plotinus and Kant and Heidegger and all the others? They are certainly now not human beings. They have become Platonic Forms. And they present us with all the frightfulness that the Forms have always presented. And we seek to undo them in a philosophy of absence. We become nominalists and we want only the infolding complexity of the Aristotelian essence, the homely individuals. Then the Grey Vampires of Time will have been transformed into tiny effeminate harpies pestering us with pointless questions on the Internet.

 

4309  Another way to make a Platonic Form less frightening is to take the erotic out of it.  That is like taking the snap out of winter’s ice, the dusty hazy out of Egypt, the pollen out of August.  Not much is left.  Then there is no need for a pedagogue to lead the boy safely past his admirers.  Then Socrates becomes a “very sincere elderly wise man, much concerned with the public good, (who) wanted to show that the logos of anything is somehow deeper than any of the attributes that can be ascribed to it.”  Then he is a simulacrum, an eidolon, a shadow of himself.  Then love is no longer the mighty god Eros, but gentle PhiliaHe becomes a kindly schoolteacher.

Socrates was Silenius.  He was a daemon.  He was the purest of thinkers.  He was both base and divine.  He has become for us anything but human.  He is the archetype of the archetype.  He is then the most frightening of all the philosophers.  He is Thought itself.  Like Jesus, he has suffered becoming a metaphysical being at the hands of his manhandling lovers.  I am one.  The student waits for the frisson to arrive.  If he is lucky he will become an Alcibiades.

Many of the socially minded in the church, and outside of it, complain that the metaphysical theologians have ripped the humanity right out of the god/man Jesus.  They lay the blame mainly on Paul.  I suppose that is what happened.  But the metaphysically minded, like me, love it.  The human Jesus is not a god.  The shudder and the horripilation of belief vanish in society’s care.  The Holy will slay you and lay you back.  You will speak in tongues.  You will be shunted away.  The killing sacrifice will be once more.  You are the absurd, the negligible.  That is a Platonic Form.

 

 

4310  Philosophical writing participates in the Form of Sacrifice.  In sacrifice the negligible piece, the inevitable remainder, is cast off, the random, the irrational, the incorrigible is deleted.  The whole is made whole by leaving the trimmings back on the shop floor to be swept away.  Philosophy is from the trimmings of life.

The essence of sacrifice is that little piece left in the rain after the celebrants have gone home.  The dead carcass still dead and abandoned.  The scapegoat still breathing now out on the windy plains forgotten.  The worthless thing that didn’t fit.  The whole is made whole again when only the worthy are in attendance.  Philosophy is in the momentary lapse of thought.  The minutest gap of separation.  The gap denied for the sake of the Whole.

 

 

4311  Speculative Realism, as I understand it, sees the world as composed of individuals that are internally complex and that are part of other individuals that are internally complex and on and on.  Each part signally its unseen presence to the other.  That simple explanation is not exact.  Matters in this philosophy are more, much more, complex than that and nothing so simple as a mere sentence can contain it.  Nonetheless, it will do.  Complexity abounds in this quasi-Aristotelian vision.  Its individuals are similar to the classic notion of substance in that they are structured, essential is distinguished from accidental and they teem with infinite depth.  They are finally ungraspable by the merely human.  This contrasts mightily with a Platonic Form, which is a simple thing.  The Forms do not divide into essential and accidental.  They have no depth; they are flat.  Nothing teems or seethes with life in them.  They are in still transcendence.  They give only a holy shudder when present.  When present they are fully present.  Then you are with the outcast remainder that is left after the sacrifice is finished and forgotten.  They are irrational chaos.  You know them exactly.  They are not of the world or any world.  Some of us have a taste for such Things.  Speculative Realism, so full of life in this world, doesn’t.

 

 

4312  Universals are eternally just what they are.  They do not change.  The separation between them is absolute.  Timeless, placeless they remain self-identical.

If I behold a burning bush, then that is a instance of the form of a burning bush.  If I watch a whiling dervish, then before my mind is an instance of the form of a whirling dervish.  If I stand in the rain, then there is with me the form of falling rain.  Eternal unchanging forms are right there.  Timeless, placeless they remain self-identical.

Change itself is a universal, an unchanging universal.  Timelessness and placelessness are timeless and placeless.  The instance is in an eternal instant.  If goes to then forever.  Nothing changes.

This philosophy of the unchanging forms is an eternal uneasiness in the spirit.  It is dis-ease in thought.  It would be a disease in the worldly soul of the worldly man.  It it frightening to him that he may end up there.  That too is an eternal form.  Nothing changes.

To overcome this disease and unease, this anxiety, the forms must be denied.  That is the hope of nominalism.  Nominalism has never succeeded in anything but increasing the anxiety.  One cannot immerse oneself in the world and learn to eternally forget the transecendent stillness.   The They will throttle you.  The harpies will come.  Your electricity will be shut off.

 

 

4313  Freud said that love is an over-estimation of the object.  He also showed us how the memory plays tricks on us and that we are capable of mis-interpreting almost anything.  Oh well, so what?  Art is exaggeration.  I got that from a documentary on PBS.  It all seems true, but who am I to judge!  And who are you, dear reader?  Oh well, who cares.  By a simple act of eidetic intuition (which I have also probably mis-understood) I can say with absolute certainty that it’s all true.  But probably meaningless.  Anyway, I’m going to say something important about anxiety.

Think of that one you are now in love with.  He is somehow the very vision of true something-or-other.  Everyone can see it.  Or maybe not.  Surely they have eyes but will not see.  Only you can see the truth.  And then there comes a hint from someone you know that you are an idiot.  Are you?  If you are a spiritual masochist, then yes and you have a great time beating up on yourself.  Secretly knowing, in a knowing hidden from even yourself, that you were right all along.  After all a vision is a vision and there you are.

A thinker has his thoughts.  Society has its demands on what you think.  The two will clash.  If they don’t, you really aren’t a thinker.  And you are anxious that you, probably out of simple horniness, led yourself out to the edge of a cliff and you are about to jump off.  Or you already have and you are floating pointlessly down.  Or up!  Pray to the god you saw in that vision to save you.  He will. 

Let’s suppose that you have just read something and it has struck you as unbelievably true and beautiful.  You are beside yourself in wanting to share it with someone.  Especially someone you are in love with.  It captures perfectly the very thing that has so secretly overwhelmed you for so long.  It is so easy and so right there.  So you give it to another.  And he sees nothing.  Even though a sort of knife just went through your heart, you begin to try to explain it.  He doesn’t have much time and you hurry and … utter failure.  What you saw he doesn’t see, no one else sees.  So now the questions strart to arise in your head.  Maybe you’re insane.  Or lust has warped your mind.  Or you’re stupid and you should not have been in school in the first place.  Or you are some sort of genius.  The truth of the matter is that the last option is right or sort of right.  What has happened is that a genius, a genie, has possessed your head, your heart and your groin and now you’re going to have to live with it.  So sweet, so terrible, so full of anxiety.  No one will believe you, probably least of all yourself.  But in bed, things rise up and you know.

 

 

 

 

4314  Let’s say I have suddenly hit on an idea.  A really good philosophical idea.  An understanding that will blow away the darkness of confusion.  I have seen this with my philosophical intuition.  It is magically intense.  My excitement goes all the way down to my toes.  I will write it down.

There are of course many ways to write it down.  In many languages, many styles of writing, many tones and hues of nuance.  Which one to choose!  I begin.  I put a few words down.  But other words and other beginnings appear and in no time I am stuck.  Which one to choose! 

Let’s say I suddenly feel the need for some music.  Which tune would help me think?  Which one to choose!  I need Music!  I need words!  I have the Idea.  It seems that limiting any of that to a specific way or type is about to stifle the intensity of it all.  I want the infinite Idea itself, not a very restricted way of expressing it.  I want Music, not a particular tune.  I want the full power of Language itself, ordered Sound, Being with a big B, not a little being.  It’s too much for my abilities.  I fall back on my bed and almost cry.  Or if I have been at this impasse too often, I do actually let the tears come.

It is often thought today that this is the problem of turning Potentiality into Actuality.  It is thought that the pure uninstantiated Form, of an idea or music or language, is merely potential until it receives the greater being of being a particular this or that.  This is the philosophy that believes that the Form just as the Form is less than the individual instantiation of the Form.  Nonetheless, it is granted that the Form just as such in more intense hanging in the imagination.  When it is particularized it loses its magic, but at least it is real.  Or is it?

Consider the Thomistic-Aristotelian form of realism.  In that philosophical vision matter is the principle of potentiality and of individuation.  The Form is actuality.  When the Form is materialized it takes on the potentiality of matter.  When the mind, with its power of abstraction, of pulling away, frees the Form from matter it abandons potentiality and comes closer to Pure Act.  The object is more actual.  This vision is the opposite of the one above where the Form particularized in matter is thought to be more actual.  Which one is correct?  I have, in my writings take up the old way.  To particularize a Form, to make it more specific and completely material, is to take it away from the fullness of Being.  Actuality, Act, belongs to the contemplation of the pure Form freed from matter.  All of which is condemned today as worthless daydreaming.

If my idea that the pure Form is closer to pure Being than the specific and the particular, then what about the act of writing?  Then the goal of writing is to lead the reader, not to the specific and the particular, but to the intensity of Being that is the Form freed from specificity and particularization.  Then a mere word, a simple phrase, is enough to place the reader’s mind right there in the magic of the pure Forms.

Consider sex, my favorite topic.  Imagine you are walking the streets and over there for a second, before a truck blocks your view, you spy a piece of flesh between T-shirt and jeans.  It’s there, it’s gone, but it may have been the most exciting thing you ever saw.  Much more exciting that the whole body displayed for your taking.  That little moment transported you to the pure Form.  Intense.  Leaving you standing there shaking.  Then the anxiety.  We go to the particular and the specific and the whole display in order to kill the intensity and the anxiety.  For some it is just too much.  Just as for many falling in love is too painful and doing it once leads to never doing it again. 

To write well is to be able, through a simple allusion, to lead your reader out of this overly-defined place to the simple Form. 

Wittgenstein’s sparse Tractatus is well-written philosophy.  Continental philosophy may have some good ideas (who would know or care?), but it suffocates them under great piles of jargon.

 

 

 

4315  There are the regular, finite forms in geometry and then there are the surprising forms of infinity. The latter include the fractals of chaos theory. Still, all depend on the elements of logic. Whichever one we use to describe the world we are still dealing with logical form. Infinity has a right handsome regularity about it. Chaos itself is contained by logic. Mathematics gently describes what is seemingly the most unruly. The question in philosophy is whether or not logical form is a mind-creation imposed on a non-logical unworld in order to make it be a world, or is already within Being independent of mind. The idealist thinks the former; the realist thinks the latter. I write realism. The mind is passive; it neither creates nor imposes. The form of the world simply is.

Within realism there are the transcendentalists and the naturalists. The former think that the Forms, logical or otherwise, are timeless and placeless. The latter think that the Forms, logical or otherwise, are located at a place and moment. To me, naturalism makes no sense at all. Logical form simply is and to say it is here or there is a surd.

So what are the elements of logical form? They are sameness, otherness, identity, separation, conjunction, disjunction, repetition, number, all, none, some, if…then, thing, negation, no-thing, existence, part, whole, cut, relation, and the maze of ordered structure. The list goes and on and on in ontology. Some philosophers call them abstract concepts and assert that they don’t “exist”. That they are mind-products. And then they have the problem of getting them “out there”. Their problem has no solution. The only philosophy that works is to see all those things as having been “outside” the mind all along and the mind simply observes.

So is mathematical-logical form all there is? Can everything be reduced to that? Of course not. All the other Forms exist also. The Forms of cloud and star and bicycle and hat and nose and poetry and cool sunglasses also all exist. None of that is “produced” by mind or language or that monster called society. It all just is. The pure Forms are there, the things we see in the light of direct vision, a light that is too bright and needs to be reflected in dark matter for our comfort. We complicate things up so we have a place to hide.

Logical form, the elements of logic, and the Forms are not all there is, but they will do for now. Being is vast and it is finally a mind-breaker. It is the Beloved. A brash delight.

Do you have any idea of how all the elements of logic mingle together in the shade of logical form itself? Of how the simple Form of Star mingles with Mathematics and all the host of heaven? Of how Philosophy is one thing? I confess I don’t. Do you think I should abandon this incorrigible lover?

 

 

 

4316  If you believe that the property of a thing is not something other than the thing itself then you are a nominalist. In order to emphasize that a property is not something more than the thing itself may say that it is away of being of the thing or a mode of being. It then has an adverbial feel. That same feeling of non-existence (as a thing itself) can be had by calling it an attribute or anaspect. However you call it, the only true existent is the individual thing itself. And for many who believe this it becomes apparent that finally only one individual thing exists. That one thing is then called Being or Reality.Finally to be an individual, or an object, is a mode of Being.The individual is an attribute and it is “predicated” of Being. Logic breaks.

That one thing (or unthing), Being, is beyond all its modes of being. If we see it as many and as spatially extended, that is because Being is then, for us, seen under the mode of number and extension. If we see it a thinking mind and in time, that is because Being is then, for us, seen under the mode of thought and time. All these modes are only Being as that. Then we see Being-as. These modes that are Being-as are not other than Being and they are just Being itself. And surely to be a thing is Being-as. For the nominalist.

But we in this life also suffer another mode of Being that is our falling into error. Then we forget that these modes of Being are not Being itself and we assert one or the other as true Being. Being hides from us in a mode of Being. That mode becomes our gift, our destiny. Our poison.

Such is the power of the nothing that is the substance of our thinking. We insert difference between thing and its properties. That is original sin. The philosophical error of seeing particular and property as two, and not one. It is the dreaded philosophy of dualism. I am a dualist. So close to evil.

 

 

 

4317  Today’s nominalists eschew the subject-predicate form as the form of things outside logic. They shy away from logic in principle. They shoo away the dogs of difference, in deference to the one beyond the One. They chew the bone. The object is thrown in the way. They hanker after existence, not for mere thought, they surmise. They rise up early to evade the muse of mysticism. They are the object oriented realists. They are hard in the darkness of the unthought. They sit and think some more.

Being is their god. Beyond divinity they look for the real.But in seeing, all they see is a mere mode of being. Even the object is just Being as object. Esse qua objectum. Being is then the seen-as-object. But Being is their god beyond the One. No, they want free of such old-time philosophy (though they respect it greatly). The ontic beyond the ontological. Even the objectness of the object is mere being-as. Metaphysics dies in the heat of their real object.And the real object is unreal. In the heat of Being there are only words.

 

 

 

4318  A sober, ontological analysis of an object leads us to Chaos as the ground of its being.  This is the Truth of Being.  That is the truth seen by both Plato and Nietzsche.  This is the place of desire.  That is the calm Apollonian vision.  Here we are alone with the wild, incorrigible beauty.  Here we go mad.  This is the calm Apollonian vision.  The Boy looks at you and your groin aches.  You look about for an escape.  You know the drive of chaos.  Your mind leaks.  I write the Boy.  I write the god beyond God.  I write the night of Pan and revolution.  The Forms arise and loom.  You freeze.  This is calm scholarship in the Garden of Academos.  Apollo walks the labyrinthine path.  Chaos is on the boy’s cheek.  History begins.

 

There has always been a fight between philosophy and poetry.  Between searing analysis and beauty.  Between the agitated professor and the boy who calmly watches.  The boy is chaos.  The dialectic works perfectly.  Then oblivion.

 

Philosophy without the boy/god is mere analysis.  Philosophy without the fire of Eros, the Tapas of the Buddhist, the frightening infinity of the twilight Krishna, the Night of Power and the Curly-headed Youth, is nothing but social propriety.  It is dead.  Chaos is desire; that and only that is the Will to Power, the madness of the Eternal Return.  He comes again.  You wait helpless. 

 

 

 

4319  We still have, in our academic culture, an aversion to nakedness. And we also insist that a person prove his individuality by means of a fine set of characteristics.Ontologically, no bare particulars that are there to be seen, only bundles of qualities are all there is to what we are. Thus, being true to that culture, I could never say, along with my so very gay friend, “Honey, you are an item.” Such plainness, such directness, such pointedness would be far too abrupt. Rather, I must list his best qualities and elevate him to a social abstraction, a type. I will avert my eyes from him as a just that. But, of course, I am not a part of that academic culture and I do see that he is really an item. Intensely just that.

Likewise, it’s very important in our culture that we remain untouched, pure, withdrawn in silent reserve, unseen except in dissimulation. No relation between individuals can finally be real and binding. We are each cocooned and revealed as larval, a grotesque mask for the grotesquely hidden. We are a people seeking protection.That we might not have to is a mystical vision of a heavenly place. A daring metaphysics.

No fear is so great as that of a straight male afraid he is going to be looked at, afraid of a real relation, afraid he will really have to speak and be heard beyond the nice delicacies he has practiced. He does not want to be an item, a just that, a thing in itself so out there for all to see.He does not want a real relation that will bring him in contact with another.

 

 

 

4320  The sign of the false is its randomness.  The sign, the critical mark, of the true is its groundedness in all that came before. A complete break with history, the cut of the uncaused, is evidence of the false.  The real has sufficient reason outside itself to be.  The truth of a thing lies in the conditions for its arising.  The fit fits until we arrive at the complete unity of the One Thing, the Real.  Being itself whole.  Except that this philosophy is not the description of this world we live in where the random seems to rule and the uncaused is.  It seems that the world about us is false.  As false as a piece of fiction on a library shelf.

 

But perhaps the library is infinite and The (ever unreal) Library of Babel is real.  Infinity contains the random.  The frightening Infinite.  And our physicists seek daily to banish it from their theories.  So far unsuccessfully.

 

 

 

4321  In analysis, realism takes the world back to the primal entities.  Beyond these simple things there are no others.  They rest on nothing else.  They exist.  They are the groundless things.  They are the ground.  They are the uncaused.  For no reason, they just are.  This is the hair-raising randomness of Being.  Chaos lies here deep in the heart of what is.

 

Thus, because of the unease these unchanging uncaused first things give rise to in the spirit of man, he looks for that which will be its own reason for being.  He looks for that that must exist.  The necessary thing.  He will call it God.  It will allay his anxiety.  It will ground the ungrounded.

 

The ground of our anxiety is the uncaused, the random, in our existence.  The totally free.  We hang on this nothing.  The nothing is the shimmering false.  Where is necessity?

 

Thus the Ontological Argument was born from this anxiety.  This is the impulse that drove on Des Cartes, Spinoza, Malebranche and Leibniz. All those who sought the perfect wholeness of the world rushed to find that that cannot not be.  The one thing that is its own ground.  Or the random rules.  Oh Anselm!

 

The argument is needed but their followers today, the advocates of the harmonious whole, hesitate.  They stop short.  They are afraid to go all the way to climax.  Their love of philosophy lies limp.  Other matters are considered.

 

My philosophy scintillates with the uncaused.  The Forms lie about for no reason.  Like languishing objects of our love they reek with what isn’t.  They ooze the false.  They just are.  The false, the erotic, the random, your freedom, is too much.  Few look.

 

 

 

4322  So the Form of the Sky is a random falseness.  But it is a noble lie, i.e. an artistic truth.  It is life.  Its beauty is our life.  The Forms must have that random falseness in order to finally exist.  But is that existence finally false?  That is the philosophical question.

 

To be is to be a thing.  Oh, we hesitate to say that something exists.  To say so would be to give it power.  It would be a thing in itself.  It would not go away.  And it would not be here or there and we couldn’t find it.  Except in an instant.  But how to find that instant.  It is all so improbable.  But it is all so necessary simply because that is the way things are here.  The world, so obvious, so present, is so unlikely.

 

 

 

4323  Neither Kierkegaard nor Nietzsche was honest about his intentions.  Still, I love both.  The times were against them.  Plato lived in a propitious time and could afford to speak the truth.  Both Kierkegaard and Nietzsche hid behind masks and led the way to the science of delusion and repression that is called psychology.  We have all suffered their suffering.

 

Exoterically, the nineteenth century was under the sway of the Goddess, part Amazon, part homely Maiden.  Esoterically, it was in love with the lover, the boy suffering the tortures of love.  It sought help from the ancient Greeks.  Even Hölderlin and Goethe.

 

 

 

4324  Today the Ontological Argument has become for us also speech speaking speaking.  Meaning meaning meaning.  Thought thinking thought.  The Holy Trinity still rules and riles all our philosophical doing.  It rises and crashes into the moon.  It sleeps and dreams and bashes itself to pieces.  It always suffers under the red mark of the teacher’s opprobrium.  It is the narcissus lark of dawn.  This boy lies in bed and works the morning.

 

This point of necessity is the subliminal rallying cry of all our slashing analysis.  This piercing point of exactitude nauseates as does all fleshly desire.  This impossible night of thought leaves itself as residue in the morning light and right there the truth abides.  The lover loves love.  The work works all through itself.  The urge oozes in dew.  I do the white film of reality.  I am that than which there can be no abater.  Later I see I am nothing but myself.  Out there.

 

 

 

4325  Eros is our guide to the Pure Forms.  It leads us through dianoia to noesis.    It leads us through discursive thought, through the process of reasoning, to a vision of the ultimate ontological things, the Ideas.  The Idea is the object of the driving intention of Eros; it is the beloved thing.  The Idea is the object of the desire that is Eros.

 

The Idea, the object of love's vision, is the well-formed, the well-ordered, the clear and distinct.  It is the still perfection.  It is the final thing.  The hubbub of life stops before that.

 

The Idea is that beauty that makes you stop in your tracks.  It is that piercing thing that cracks your mind.  It is the only thing you ever wanted.  The thing you wanted so bad.  The thing you were often too afraid to think about.  It is the end of your incessant thinking and your desire. It waits.

 

Now, though the desire is ever-present with us, or some of us, can we say for sure that the Idea, the object of our reaching in body and mind is also there or somewhere to be grasped?  Does it exist or is it a fool's dream?  Is it real or a mere name that names nothing?  That is to say, are you a realist or a nominalist?  (nomina being Latin for name)  Platonism is extreme realism.  It is the madness of Eros and the still, Buddha-like, perfection of the final beauty.  The many prefer the middle ground of moderation, wanting neither madness nor stillness.  It's somewhat understandable.

 

Let us say you are falling through Chaos with Satan in Paradise Lost.  You are falling through empty space.  And you are analyzing that space as you fall.  One piece of space is exactly like another.  It is all the same as to scale, as to direction, as to every other consideration.  Your analysis goes nowhere.  Order of any kind is absent.  Nothing is established.  Thus it is chaotic.  Now imagine a world without order.  There is nowhere you can go to get your bearings.  There is no zero point on any coordinate system, no stable unit of measure, no steadiness of direction, every place falls into the infinity of places between it and every other place.  Every definition gives way to being defined by every other definition.  Now was then and will be again.  There is no first, no last, and every attempt to momentarily establish a first and last on any scale soon blurs into something else and the far off beckons mystically.  Sudden shifts break through.  You are somewhere else and another time.  You are suddenly someone else.  It becomes a nightmare.

 

Consider a logic that does not have any distinction between subject and predicate.  There are no first things that are the particulars that bear properties.  There are no properties that remain what they are.  Every property is defined and has its being is all other property, and they all fall into each other.

 

If you let yourself stop and think about the matter, will you ever come to the end of thinking?  Or can you, with Emerson, be sufficient unto yourself and know that you know?

 

Consider the poor student writer who has to pick a topic.  He is faced with a swelter of topics that all blend into each other.  He looks for a particular thing, but all particulars break apart into being all other things.  All meaning, all understanding, slides into the meaning and understanding of all things blending together.  The unity of things becomes sheer confusion.  No point is made, no clear distinction is drawn, the huge compactness of reality crushes him.  He deliquesces.

 

The opposite horrible predicament is the vision of particulars stable in themselves, universals, i.e. the forms, established and well-ordered, clear differences drawn, sharp lines of thought laid down.  But is that vision real or a dream?  Is it a momentary fairy, a jinn, that quickly disappears in the truth of chaos?  Is the erotic thing that drives you on to this beauty a false non-being.? Is Beauty deception?  Are Eros and the Ideas finally evil unthruths?

 

So Eros leads us on to form and Beauty.  Or does it?  Do you trust it?  Do you think Eros and the beauty that drives are good?  If you are asked to judge the good and the beautiful, would you rather turn away from Eros and toward some criteria for judging you found in a book.  Is the non-lover a better judge than the lover?  Is the non-lover to be preferred to the lover?  Was Lysis right in the Phaedrus after all?

 

If you let yourself stop and think about the matter, will you ever come to the end of thinking? Or can you, with Emerson, be sufficient unto yourself and know that you know?

 

 

 

4326  Ever since Nietzsche announced the death of God philosophy has been poetry.  No longer are there Forms fixed in themselves.  The individual is gone.  All things that would exist dissolve into each other and never were.  We have been whirling off into the darkness.  Every horizon has disappeared.  The vortex of chaos pulls us in as into a black hole.  We liquefy onto the floor of emptiness.  And glisten on the shiny scales, then run off.  The flashing lights move and entertain us as they fade.

 

All of this has happened because, along with Nietzsche, we were trying to cover up the obvious.  We put on a transparent mask to hide our desire.  We pretended no one knew the truth.  We longed for the false and a shield against what we were.  And though everyone knew and knew that he knew he insisted he knew nothing.  And so he didn't.  We discuss many things on into the night.

 

Today continental philosophy is poetry trying to be firm with itself, but it is only the chaos of our non-existence trying to scream.  It is magnificent in its inert complexity.  It is even massive.  It sinks farther.  The center and the eternal things are gone.  So now we try for creativity itself hoping to salvage something that was God.  We lie to ourselves.  It is sort of noble.

 

Analytic philosophy has tried to wield the knife of diaeresis to find the heart of the beast and kill it in its own darkness.  But the dead thing is still dead.  Finally in the constricting maze of logical connectors it strangles.  But its intentions were good and I have taken up the knife myself.  Even here.

 

The only thing I can think of is to drag Nietzsche out into the open and see what he really was.  I want to look directly at Zarathustra's Secret.  I want to worship the forbidden beauty just as he did in his madness.  I want to speak the liturgy out into the open air.  I want this god to be seen naked in the sun. Just as he wanted and to live.  The fixed and true individual thing will stand.

 

 

 

4327  I love to read Reid Kane.  The steady, heavy rhythm, the magnificent, ponderous words, the throbbing insistence.  Substance fills the page.  He is true to the Nietzschean declaration that philosophy, now that we have killed Truth, is become poetry.

 

When the particular vanished, because it had itself become a swarming assemblage of smaller individuals themselves falling apart into ever smaller worlds of teeming gathering clouds of nether-worlds and chaos began to bloom with greater and greater portents of good and evil, then also the fixed universals that brought truth into place dutifully vanished and Truth was nowhere.  Or so we smilingly imagined and love's falling had us in its grasp.  Now we sail on and on through the sunless night creating unworlds of grim neighing possibilities.  An exquisite nihilism.

 

When the universal and the particular are gone.  When we cannot say x is F except as a fanciful notion.  When the center between an individual and what it is no longer holds fast.  When sentences only serve to deconstruct sentential structure.  Then nihilism and chaos and the alluring beauty of the apparitional Helen bring the thrill of false creativity.  The seductive fragrance of the simulacrum wafts in sweet decadence.  Flowers of evil nod.  Poppies grow on ancient battlefields where thought succumb.  When the universal and the particular are gone.

 

I'm sure that Reid Kane is not really looking to be a poet, but he, like Heidegger, is looking to find that magical place between poetry and the sever mathesis of philosophy, a high place where the teeming algorithms do their daimonic dance in toxic stratosphere grinning joy.  Or so I imagine as I read him.  A lovely read.  Thought never finds a resting place.  It becomes myth.  Logic becomes rather x transforms into y.  An eternal metamorphosis.  In the meantime Nietzsche has taken off his many masks and has gone to stand naked before the Sun that warms the Isles of the Blest.

 

 

 

4328  All interpretation is misinterpretation.  If it weren't we would have no chance of overcoming the great forces of history coming down on our head.  We pay excessive, close attention to certain writers so we might undo the stranglehold they have on our assent.  What has been given to us is a gift that is too heavy to carry.  Too awkward, too tangled, too hard to understand.  But it's not our fault alone that we had to be so contrary.  Those other writers were just as we in their time.  We each seek our own place.  The value in our writing depends upon how nicely we have distorted history into a good read.  Kant made the modern world of continental philosophy by misunderstanding not only Aristotle, but also himself.  This is the glorious Will to Power.  Therefore, if you think I have misunderstood Nietzsche, you must know that I must in order to be true to both Nietzsche and myself.  And Plato.  And my interlocutor.   I am naturally afraid.

 

T.S. Elliot advises us that when we write poetry we should give our conscious mind over to making sure the punctuation and grammar is correct, and let our sub-conscious come up with the ideas and words.  It is the same with writing philosophy.  Make sure the superficials are done well.  The eternal forms as they reveal themselves to your hidden spirit will take care of the rest.  Your conscious mind may not only be surprised at what it finds written but will probably be somewhat embarrassed.  You must have the courage of your own words.

 

 

 

4329  So is the human spirit free?  For the ordinary person, for the non-lover, the sane worker – Yes.  For the love obsessed, the God obsessed, the sleepless thinker – No.  Each thinks he has chosen or been chosen by the better way. 

 

 

 

4330  In this writing, I am going to use the terms Aristotelian and Platonism loosely.  A real scholar would probably great differ with my use, but I am making a philosophical point, not doing historical research.  Hurray for the scholars, but for now they are not invited to the party.

 

One of the big differences between Platonism and Aristotelianism is that the former makes no difference between accidental and essential qualities as does the latter.  For a Platonist all of the forms of a thing are equal.  Likewise, for an Aristotelian, the essential form of a thing is internal to the thing; it is a part of it.  For a Platonist, all forms are external to the thing, which leaves the thing bare and without parts.  Both see a difference between form and matter.  The Aristotelian sees substance, which is the union hylomorphic union of those two.  The Platonist sees no such thing.

 

The Aristotelian sees substance as the hylomorphic union of matter and form.  Thus it sees no need for a nexus of participation or exemplification.  It is substance, the object, that accounts for the union.  Platonism has no substance, no object, to do the uniting and therefore depends on a nexus to do the trick.  Aristotle tries throughout his philosophy to get along without relations or a nexus of any kind.  All such things are instead objects or substances.  He tries.  At least that is the tendency that his followers take up.  In Platonism full-blooded relations abound.  Or have become so in modern times.  They should; otherwise, it becomes Aristotelianism.  

 

In Aristotle, relations become accidental qualities.  He can't quite get rid of them, but they become greatly devalued.  They slip away from the really real into dependency.  Essence and accident separate in that essence resides at the interior of the object, substance, and the accidents are left out in the marshes, they are marginalized.  In later times, these mere sensual addenda were only subjective ideas or images in the mind and kept their lower status.  Thus mind is now away from the Aristotelian really real.  It is insubstantial.  A Platonist has to take a different way.

 

An Aristotelian has form and matter united "in" substance, the object.  A Platonist has form tied to matter with a nexus, not "in" anything, no substance.  An Aristotelian divides accident from essence in that the former merely hang onto the outside of the object, encrustations.  The essence has full existence, on the inside, comfortably away from peering eyes and groping hands.  The Platonist has no such division between accident and essential and all ontological things are "out there" to be seen.  A Platonist and his things like to show off.

 

Finally, for an Aristotelian, it seems to me, even form and matter become devalued and only substance, the object, is left.  All else belongs to the Platonic realm of the barely existing, or simply non-existent, phenomena - perversion.  Even the Thomists feel it necessary to most severely damn Platonists as the most dangerous of all human lures.  It ain't pretty to watch.

 

 

 

4331  Those who push to have an Aristotelian-type substance or object as the only kind of really existing thing (no universals or relations or connectors or quantifiers of any kind) usually conflate substance, fact, and the idea of the fact.  Substance, traditionally, is hylomorphic.  It is a union of matter and form.  It is form embedded in matter, though we cannot use the word "embedded" because there is no connector that unites.  Substance is the union without nexus.  The "relation" of matter and form to substance is rather vague, except to say that they are "in" substance or the object.  A fact is an instantiation of form by matter or material signata, a bare particular.  Here again the "relation" of form and bare particular to fact is vague, but a material object and a fact "feel" different.  A proposition "depicts" a fact or an object, but neither form nor matter is "in" it.  A proposition is an idea that intends a fact or an object.  Let me give examples.  My printer.

 

My printer is black.  It is obviously a material object.  It has the form of being a printer and various other qualities.  Matter and form together in the object.  Or I can see the same matter and form as a fact.  That is a printer.  My printer is black.  Two facts, one printer.  And then there is the thoughts – 'That is a printer.'  'My printer is black.'  A thought is "of" the object.  They are somewhat like facts, but they do not have either the matter or the form of printer, plus, most importantly they have the unity of mind.  They are simple.  They are joined to the fact or the object by the nexus of intentionality. 

 

 

 

4332  The object of our gaze in contemplation is the far away, infinite thing of nowhere and no time.  It is thus that beauty sitting across the way silently knowing you are watching him.  God is right there.  At least until his friends come and take him away.

 

I have two friends; one believes in the here and now and the other believes in the Nowhere and Never.  One is immersed in the finite, the other is from out of the Infinite.  God is both.  The boy was the Eternal Form exemplified by that.  That is the absurdity of Being.  Of both heaven and earth.  We are in a very strange place.  Heimlich, unheimlich – did he just glance back and smile as he left?

 

 

 

4333  A great swath of philosophy in the twentieth century has been under the sway of Brentano.  It is the object-act distinction that has controlled us and been our guide.  We live in a transitive world with a transitive grammar; our attention is directed toward the Other.  Always.  All else is perversion.  All else is narcissism.  It was the narcissistic ways of the old triune God that brought us all our former troubles.  It was narcissism that brought us cross-eyed metaphysics.  It was narcissism that arrested our development.  We stagnated.  I, it seems, write up the old ways of the middle voice, the intransitive verb, the trinity of self with itself.  I write up the boy and his preening mirror.  Shouldn't I be a worker out there helping to build a worldly structure?

 

 

 

4334  First the vision, then the anxious holding back – now comes the interlude of anguish and twisting that may last months and the feeling of guilt and failure - then the thunderstorm, then the clearing, then the Radiance.  That is the repetition in Kierkegaard's Repetition.  It is the movement of thought in philosophical thinking.  In the blank, after paradox has caused your delicate structure of ideas to collapse, the Idea comes surging up even more lucidly and – you hold your breath - the process begins again.  The machine of thought.  Crushing, redemptive, magic.  Necessary.

 

This religious philosopher is not equal to the ethical.  He is not a mere aesthete of thought, but he is also not able to make the acts of commitment to the idea that constitute the stable everyday.  He knows the process.  He finally opts for the religious, the absurd, the god who will not let you speak his name out into the public places, and he dies alone in the arms of the Alone.

 

 

 

4335  What is the difference between the so-called madness of thought in the existential absurd and mere manic-depressive insanity.  Maybe there is no difference.  Maybe it is absolute, but subtle.  But only an existential thinker would ask the question.  Is the Absurd absurd and just a surd?  What is the difference between ordinary insanity and the divine madness in the Phaedrus?  Lysis says there is no difference.  The lover at times agrees, but deep in his soul he does not agree.  Still the question remains of whether there is a real difference.  The resulting anxiety is what we are.  Is religion just escapism?  The answer that it is is too easy.  The true dialectical thinker will never accept such an easy way out.  Nor will a lover abandon his love for mere affection.

 

 

 

4336  From Schopenhauer and Kierkegaard and Nietzsche, Heidegger learned anxiety.  He came to see decay, but "the foreknowledge of decay seems the privilege of those who can see beauty".  This is also the moral of Walter Pater and Oscar Wilde.  The only Nazism that Heidegger or any of the other ardently kindled Germans knew was the totalitarian enslavement by beauty and the vision of its inevitable demise.  Those Nordic youth had them by the balls.  There was no escape except through a greater evil.

 

And through their lovers these youth came to know their own beauty and they too felt the coming end.  Together they rushed on toward the grand cataclysm.  Now the secret is locked away on old black and white film.  And we are mystified how a people could be so strange.  We are not really mystified.  We know but we do not let ourselves know.  We too have the privilege of foreknowledge and we rush on.

 

 

 

4337  Some must have wondered, I'm sure, whether or not SR or OOP could ever be used to construct a theology.  A God, not a Goddess, theology.  Its critical step back from the hidden inwardness is already a Goddess thing.  The problem for a God theology is that there is no God religion out and about now.  Emil Durkheim has shown that all religions have now been absorbed by the social.  The social is now everything.  Especially on the Internet.  Such socializing is very, very much a Goddess, a family thing.  A God Theology, a true religious theology, would have to have as its object of worship a lone being, hidden only by its dazzling Presence.  The Totally Unhidden.  Internet chatter would stop. 

 

 

 

4338  Graham Harman in the last few days, on his blog, has been trying to capture the meaning of realism.  He is unsettlingly energetic and wonderfully passionate about it.  We can only watch and wish him well.  He writes, " This is why I always call for the following litmus test when assessing any philosophy that claims not to be idealism: does it allow for the interaction between any two entities to be treated ontologically in the same fashion as relations in which humans are a component?"  He has also written, “Individual entities are the basic reality in the cosmos.”  I'm not sure if he means to say that those cosmic entities are also ontologically primary, but I will assume he does.  My thought is that if he thinks of those objects away from human peering to be only or mere "individuals entities", then his thinking is doomed.  If he has shoved universals, including relations, bare particulars, and all fundamental ties between such things into the mind or into the ontological nowhere, then he is an idealist-to-be.  A true realist would have to say that all those things are separate from any act of knowing.  They exist whether known or not.

 

 

 

4339  I'm going to present here some advice on how to write, which some of you may think is laughable, considering the stuff I put up for people to read.  Or not read, because I have hardly any readers.  Therefore, if what you are trying to do is write something academic, then you should do the exact opposite of what I say.  Academic writing is basically a compressed conversation between you and the others writing about the same topic.  It's sort of a Platonic dialogue without the artful images.  Academic writing is good natured and sensible.  It is best done first in outline form as you build the dramatis personae.  What I do is anything but that.  I am in love with the sentence finds its way into my mouth and the tortured thoughts that creep into my mind as I so erotically lie on my bed.  I write in the twisting of intellectual passion, not in the dispassion of scholarly debate.  I am up against God and existence.  I am not socially connected.  I am not for the classroom, except for the one who has fallen asleep.

 

Here's my advice:  think of a topic, write about two longish pages on that, just set out and start writing until its finished, read it over.  And hold your head in amazement at how dull it is.  Now go back over those two pages and see if you can't find one or two or three sentences or parts of sentences that are really nice.  I guarantee that somewhere in that mass of nothing you will find a few little gems.  Excise them.  Throw away the scraps left over.  And there you are.  You have written something fine.  It probably went from two longish pages down to something one or two inches long, but that's enough.  Be proud of yourself.  Put your fine refined sentences up for all to see.  Don't worry about whether or not they are all that meaningful.  Your reader isn't stupid and he can make something equally fine out of it – if he isn't afraid.  Trust yourself that you know a really fine sentence when you see it.  Writing should produce something delicious.  A small morsel.  Anyway, we're all tired of all those great, long meals served up on the clogged blogs.

 

 

 

4340  As I understand Graham Harman, the individual thing is primary and that thing has an inner essence and outer encrustations. That last is what, traditionally, have been called accidental properties. That is my understanding as of now. From here I am going to go on into an interpretation of all that. All interpretations are removed from the original and are probably, and are no doubt, a misinterpretation. Let it be. I think we all understand our human situation. Graham Harman's individual thing is very close to an Aristotelian substance, but, not being a scholar, I cannot say for sure just how close. Let it be. The counter view is the Platonic. Harman's is the ethical and the Platonic is the aesthetic. Let me explain.

Imagine a young man walking down the street on a dark, stormy night. (As you can see we are already at the beginning of what is probably a bad novel.) Ethically speaking, we are very concerned for the young man's safety, his mental state, his comfort. We look to his inner self. We "respect him as a person" like us who is maybe in need. A story unfolds. Aesthetically speaking we notice how the red bandana around his slender neck, in the flash of lightening, nicely suggests a thrilling shiver of violence. Shadows play. A gesture from his hand sighingly indicates confusion. The soft wind rustles his hair and the loveliness of his silhouette glides us into a dream of love. The young man has completely dissolved into appearing forms of the night. The person is gone. The individual is gone. Form is everything. The scene becomes insubstantial. We are in the purely phenomenal. The fleeting light of the instant. The Eternal is momentarily right there as the just that and then gone.Everything is bare. We have done violence to the person. He has become a god.

By trying to preserve the inner essence of the individual, away from the gawking eyes of the artistic voyeur, Harman has spoken the ethical that is today the watchword and the password into our social, political times. The problem is that, by lifting the person safely up and away, he has shut him up in darkness. He has given us a world without beauty. Only a world of polite respect for one another's untouchable sovereignty. A world without gods.

 

 

 

4341  Kierkegaard, the philosopher I try the hardest to understand, still lies beyond me.  I have written the difference between the ethical and the aesthetic.  He insists that beyond the ethical, in the suspension of the ethical, lies the religious.  Yes, of course it does.  It is the Absurd.  It is the Absolute Paradox.  It is the Existential Instant.  It is so damn difficult to think.

 

He says that the religious is closer to the aesthetic than to the ethical.  The religious is closer to the poet than to the committed family man.  Still, for all that, he may deceivingly look like a so ordinary, bourgeois businessman.  The difference is so maddeningly hard to think.

 

Walter Pater, in the Conclusion, showed us the ephemeral, effervescence of the beautiful.  An alluring beauty.  He did not show us the Eternal Forms.  He saw none.  Or did he?  Is the Existential Absurd the momentary presence of the Eternal as just that thing now before you?  The fallen thing?  It is terribly hard to think.

 

 

 

4342  It is well-known that for Plato it is Eros that is our guide to the Forms.  At last we are taken to a vision of those eternal things.  It is there that we make our acquaintance with the things of Being. We are in the presence of divine beings.  And today if you really believe that you will be laughed out of what is left of the Academy.  More than likely, though, you will be ignored until you leave.  Nothing has changed.  It was always so.  That too is the true Form of Being.  Of religion.  Of the far thinker.  And, most of all, of the lover, the erotic traveler.  If that is you, expect nothing from the world, nothing at all.

 

And thus you have become the Knight of Infinite Resignation.  Faith should follow, but it is difficult.  It is very difficult to think.  Both Constantin Constantius and Johannes de Silencio babbled away about something, but what was it? 

 

 

 

4343  Take an ordinary thing.  An ordinary, individual thing.  Anything at all.  Take hold of it.  Pull out your ontological hammer.  Hit it.  Hit it hard.  Watch the ontological pieces shatter.  Blind your eyes from the brilliance.  Stand firm in the stillness and the silence.  Don't lose heart.  Slowly look about.  You are a philosopher.  The bobbles and bangles of Being fascinate you.  The fascinans.  The Fascinans Tremendum.  The mere nothings of analysis have captured you with their high art.  The Broadway of the Mind has taken you and you will never be able to go home again.  All night coffee shops of broken sentences beckon with their soft, golden entangled light.  Sigh.  One more sip. One more look about.  The heaviness of sleep comes.  And you go back to bed.

 

 

 

4344  As I have gotten older I have come to a different understanding of the Picture of Dorian Gray.  I used to think that it was preposterous to think that the person himself could stay young while his portrait aged into horrible distortions.  Now I see that that is in fact exactly what happens.  Inwardly, I am perfectly the same as I was at fifteen.  I ask my older friends and they say the same thing.  It is only that image on the wall, the mirror, that has changed.  Horribly changed.

 

At least that part of the story is true.  And it is true that eventually the image will be destroyed, thank God, but the rest of the story doesn't seem right. 

 

Consider a flower.  Ontologically speaking, let's say it is composed of the Eternal Form of Flower and a bare particular.  In addition there are all the forms of its momentary appearing.  The flower in itself knows its Form of Being a Flower.  And it knows that that doesn't change; it is eternal.  The momentary appearances come and go.  Soon, too soon, it droops and wilts and dies as a gruesome entanglement.  But the Form of the Flower is still as it was and always will be.  The flower knows it is That - if a flower knows anything at all.

 

The upshot of all this is, the philosophy that can be gathered from this. is … I don't know what it is; it is just me thinking, as I have always done.  I see something full of wonder.  That is to say, I see something in frightening holiness.  I can only look on a short while and then I go blind.

 

 

 

4345  The most common philosophy today is the belief that what we know, everything that we think we know, about the world, is the world as it appears when filtered through our human thinking apparatus. In other words, we know nothing real. And to think that we do is the lie that leads to all kinds of social evil. Oh my! We know distortions. Personal caricatures. Basically trash that we share with others. And … why go on? There are those who say that knowledge of our situation, our predicament, allows us to be more caring and even more creative in our imaginings. Still, it all remains untrue and fleeting according to the settings on our apparatus and our dilapidation. It's a detestable philosophy and, I think, in bad taste.

In my writings, you will find a philosophy of direct realism.We know, we see, Being directly without filters. This is that Principle of Acquaintance that is so damned by so many ontologists. I see the things of Being before my mind's eye without intermediary. Thus I am not a Hegelian, who sees all things appearing to all other things only as something mediated. To the thing itself! A brazen saying. Is it Evil itself?

Why is it that in our long intellectual and religious history, it has so often been thought a sin to look directly at something? Why are we cautioned to always look in and through a mirror, a Specula? To see the Genus, the Form, through the species, the particular? What is it about looking on and at? As the Medusa was to be seen safely only as reflected. To watch is a crime. Why are we blinded by the light? We wear clothes as a monk wears a habit. We have the habit of lying. Still, for all that, I know how a boy will wear his cap down over his eyes so no one will see the beauty that is there. And his baggy clothes are like a chador. Life is not what we imagine.

 

 

 

4346  More than anything, philosophy, for the past two and a half millennia, has been a question about our knowledge of universals.  Right now I am listening to an escalating chant.  I perceive this particular instance of the universal Form.  Of the Chant.  The Form, the genus, has become, here and now, of a specific type, even a minute determination of that species.  The Form of Chant appears as this very limited instance.  The question is about our knowledge of the Form itself, naked, without all the hiding within specificity and particularity.  Can I go to the Form itself?  I think that that is the act of Husserl's Eidetic Intuition.  That is what has been so questionable about that philosophers work.

 

Let us say that the specific, well-determined, limited instance of the Form is what we have before our mind's eye and from that we want to know the Form itself by itself.  Can we?  There are, of course, those who insist we can't.  They are the many.  They insist that all we have is the word "chanting" and that is a very faint shadow of the determinate instance.  Even a concept gathered from many listening is a faint image of each of those determinate instances.  It seems that the particular, determinate instances are the really real and the more determinate it is, the more real.  The idea that there is a Form by itself is a faint almost nothing. 

 

There is something about that analysis that seems correct.  Until Eros enters in, the limb-loosener.  The root λύε means to loosen, separate, divide – ana-lyse, to loosen up.  There are times when perceiving something we are struck by something else in it.  Suddenly, there is magic.  It is overwhelmingly, strikingly beautiful to the mind.  In it we see the really real thing we have been waiting for.  That thing we somehow knew.  The spirit strikes up.  We now see directly and we know with strong knowing.  We have that something present.  What is that something?  Should we beat up on ourselves and say it is "only" our heightened sex drive, meaning to lessen it?  Or should be catch the beat and say that it is the heights of the Drive of Sex guiding us to transcendent things?  It's the latter.  The intense Form itself is near.

 

Eros is not one of the gentle gods.  We are not talking about Harmonia.  Eros is that god that will violently rip your joints apart.  I think anyone who has been violently in love knows that.  Eros dismembers.  That is why he is the god of philosophical analysis.  Things come apart.  The Form separates from the species which separates from the instance – all the way along the philosophical Scala Paradusi.  In the dance that is ontology you are jerked about, the duende, the tango, the bone-crusher in present.  Even so mysteriously present in a mere chord change. 

 

 

 

 

4347  Let's say you are listening to music and a chord changes and it sends your spirit flying.  It happens all the time.  What is the ontological explanation for what has happened?  Or are you one of those who thinks there is no such thing as an ontological explanation, only scientific?  Let's attempt an amateur scientific explanation.  The chord change set off certain electrical changes in your neural makeup and eventually that set off a burst of serotonin in your brain and you were ecstatic.  Serotonin!  All of that can be mathematically described.  It's mathematics, my dear.  Even music is mathematics.  Everything is mathematics.  Space is merely mathematics as geometry.  Your spirit flying is geometry – of one sort or another, or of many sorts.  Mathematics!  When I was in high school, I loved mathematics, especially geometry.  It sets me off just as much as chord changes, maybe more.  In fact, I do agree that they are the same.  Still, that doesn't answer the deep questions that rise up about just what that being "set off" and flying is, serotonin being just mathematics and all.  So now it's back to what is the ontological explanation.  My answer is that the Form was captured by both music and neural mapping and there it was.  The Form!  Which isn't much of an answer at all.  Nonetheless, we are in love with form.  And all of our thinking attends to it.  Let's say it is a Mysterium Tremendum, a Mysterium Fascinans.  The mind breaks and the oblivion of sleep ensues.  Until the next time. 

 

 

 

4348  Here is a proposal for an object oriented theology.  First off, though, I should say that I don't believe there are such things as objects.  I am not an object oriented ontologist.  Nonetheless, I think it would be fun to try my hand at this.

 

Let me begin by making a few suppositions.  We live in a world that is real insofar as it comprises a whole lot of objects, which are themselves real.  The world is the set of all objects.  This is thus a pluralism, not a monism. 

 

An object has an essential nature.  It appears under certain aspects. Those appearances, those aspects, are grounded in the object and its essential nature.  The object creates its appearances, its aspects. 

 

Thus we have 1) object, 2) essential nature, 3) aspect, and 4) the nexus of creation.

 

There are no relations between objects.  Objects appear to each other internally.  That is to say, there is a sensual presentation of one object inside another object.  The sensual object inside a real object is the "image" of a real object that is other.  A real object creates an aspectal appearance of itself inside another real object. 

 

The place of creation, for one object, is inside another object.

 

That dual thing, that hooking up of one object with another through mutual creation begets another object.  A third arises out of two.  From there the process iterates and a world unfolds or blossoms or maybe just plops out.

 

In the beginning there was the Primal Pair.  (unless you want to somehow derive two from one, but that don't come easy)  This Pair worked their magic on each other and a world arose.  Voila. 

 

This means that in addition to creation we have to have a nexus of begetting.  Or spawning.  Or whatever you want to call it. 

 

I personally do believe there are such things as objects.

 

 

 

4349  Ontologically speaking, objects don't exist.  Objects belong to the everyday.  They are thus of science and commerce.  They are worldly.  Ontology is other.  After analysis on the everyday has been performed by the ontologist and the object has disappeared, there is no way he can put his ontological pieces back together so they are once again the same everyday object.  It is the Humpty Dumpty effect.  The ontologist remains stuck in another glittering unworld.  And from then on he will probably work day and night trying to hook up the two realms.  But you cannot.  The difference between them is absolute.

 

The everyday person thinks the ontologist is mad.  The ontologist insists that he is just handing the everyday person the very things he has had all along, but seen for what they really are.  The everyday person knows better.  The ontologist has eaten the fruit from the garden and he can never think straight again.

 

Objects don't exist, philosophically speaking.  And to try to make a philosophy of objects is doomed.  Objects belong to science and the everyday.  Ontology is other.

 

 

 

4350  Graham Harman writes at the beginning of his book Heidegger Explained:

 

"The title of Heidegger's greatest book is Being and Time, and
these three words explain the whole of his philosophy. ...  being
is not presence.
Being is not present, because being is time-and
time is something never simply present, but constantly torn apart
in an ambiguous threefold structure. The whole of Heidegger's
career serves only to clarify the insight that being is not presence.
The being of things such as candles and trees never lies fully pres-
ent before us, and neither does being itself.

A thing is more than its appearance, more than its usefulness,
and more than its physical body. To describe a candle or tree by
referring to its outer appearance, or by concepts, is to reduce it to
a caricature, since there is always something more to it than whatever we see or say. The true being of things is actually a kind of
absence. A key term for Heidegger is "withdrawal": all things with-
draw from human view into a shadowy background, even when we
stare directly at them. Knowledge is less like seeing than like inter-
pretation,
since things can never be directly or completely present
to us."

 

Using that, I want to say something about philosophy in general.  First let me say that I have no quarrel with Harman about Heidegger, simply because I am not a scholar, certainly not a Heidegger scholar, and for all I know he is right in what he says, though that is not what I was thinking when I read Heidegger.  I want to talk about presence and absence.  The seen and the unseen.  In Greek it is the difference between eidos and a-eidos.  The Idea and Hades.  The Greeks loved being in the light.  Light is the very substance and truth of Hellas.  They hated the underworld where darkness ruled.  They feared that ever unseen place.  It was the Northern Romantics that taught us about the dark glory of the shifting, watery absence, the mystically unseen.  These two views are radically opposed.  The Object of today's Object Oriented Philosophy is of the unseen, the absent to view.  It is not a Greek idea.  In order to do philosophy it is necessary to choose the Greek or the German Romantic.  In my writings I have chosen the Greek.  I most highly value the openly seen, the thing in the light, the phenomenal presence - thus the boys that decorate my words.  I eschew the darkness, the absent, the unseen.  I leave that last thing to poetry and scientific speculation.  It is not of ontology; it is the ontic, as Heidegger would say.  Heidegger has tried to lead philosophy into poetry of loss.  He has somewhat succeeded.  I suspect, however, he was playing a Pascalian game of trying to bring on the most intense darkness that he knows is ever before the coming Light. I think he was waiting for the gods to appear.

 

 

 

4351  Take an ordinary object. A chair. Break it apart into its ontological pieces. You will have properties, relations, sets, particulars, connectors, facts, actuality and potentiality, higher order logical forms, quantifiers … the list is rather big. Take a simplified version: a bare particular, a Form, and a nexus that joins the particular and the Form to make a fact. Ch(a). This is a chair. Two simple things, a connector and a fact. All those together have to make a chair. They can't. You cannot get those pieces to squeeze together tight enough to remake the original chair. The ontological pieces hang in ontological space in splendid isolation.  Glittering intellectual stars in the night of analysis.

 

Bradley tried to argue against this subject nexus predicate form of logic by showing that it leads to infinite regress when you try to hook them all up into one thing. A connector to tie the connector to the connector to the connector … falling into oblivion. In a sense he was right; you cannot overcome the division between the ontological pieces. He was wrong in that the pieces remain what they are. They will not go away. Analysis has revealed an ontological realm to us away from the world of ordinary objects.  We have jumped from beings into Being. There is no path leading from the one to the other. The mind finds itself in one or the other.  And you will choose the one you find the most alluring.

 

 

 

4352  Here is one reason why objects have trouble existing in ontology.  Consider your sock.  There was a time when it was soft and white and felt so good.  Now it is hard and yellow and feels rough.  The same sock is just like Des Carte's piece of wax.  It changes.  Is there a contradiction there?  The sock is soft.  The sock is not soft.  Well no, you say.  The one sock has different, even contradictory properties, at different times.  Yes, of course.  But ontology is not so slap-dash as that.  It must be precise; it must speak literally.  Did you really mean to say that there were moments that the sock was at?  Do such moments exist?  Does the tie of "being at" also exist?  Those are the kinds of questions that ontology must ask, has traditionally asked.  If you believe in absolute time then you may in fact believe in moments and such a tie.  Then all properties become relations.  The sock is soft at t1.    S(a, t1)  Softness is relation between the particular and the moment.  If you don't believe in the existence of moments that particulars are at, then you have to find another way to overcome the contradiction "within" the object.  You could, perhaps, abandon the logical Law of the Excluded Middle. It is neither soft nor not-soft.  Then you could even follow Nagarjuna, the great Buddhist philosopher, and say it is also neither the case that it is neither soft nor not-soft nor not the case that it is neither soft nor not-soft.  And on and on up into Nirvana.  Beyond logic and its so-called laws there is the object which doesn't fit into such neat and tidy human categories.  But then what is it?  It is just the object beyond thought, beyond logic, beyond everything you might imagine.  Do you really want to go there?  Maybe you do.  Good luck.

 

I suspect the object oriented philosophers really do believe in absolute time.  They take seriously the Hegelian aphorism – Time is the substance of the world.  Time is the great mystery.  Unlike the Platonists, they don't see it as the enemy.  It is the substance they lie on at night.  It is the

 

 

 

 

4353  Let's suppose the parallel interpretation of quantum physics is correct.  I will suppose you know what that is.  I love to think about these things.  In my heart of hearts and mind of minds I think and feel that the idea is correct.  Still, for all that, this is not a philosophical idea.  It is a scientific idea and it is lovely.  I wonder what it does for the idea of the object.

 

You might like to think of it this way.  Imagine you are a Hindu and you believe in endless reincarnation.  Given infinite time you will not only have time to become all possible things, but you actually will, one life at a time.  Along that long line of time you will be everything.   Now, however, given parallel universes you will have many, perhaps an infinite number of lives, AT ONCE.  Arjuna begged Krishna to let him see him in his true infinite form.  Krishna warned against it.  Finally, Arjuna got his wish and it … well, it's a good thing that in a parallel universe Krishna didn't let him see, because it was … oh, well.    The Object blows up.  Orientation becomes totally disoriented.  Ontology schmontology.

 

 

 

4354  Physics is not philosophy.  Physics studies the geometrical structure of Space-time.  The things of physics are "in" space and time.  Or they are pieces of Space-time.  The things of ontology are not.  If you consider universals, relations, bare particulars, facts, connectors, quantifiers and all the other things of ontology, none of those things are in either space or time, physical, phenomenal or perceptual.  Philosophy studies things not in space, time or Space-time. 

 

Look at a blue blanket.  The particular is related to other particulars with space and time relations.  That's what we mean when we say the particular is "in" space and time.  There really is not "in" there.  Space and time are not containers.  Space and time are only relations.  The Space-time of physics is something else altogether.  Philosophy doesn't study Space-time.  Philosophy knows only relations, universals, bare particulars etc.  Anyway, neither the blue nor the blanketness of the blanket is in space or time and they certainly are not in Space-time. 

 

It could be that you want to believe in only Space-time and physics.  The things of philosophy other than that may seem to you to be mind-fumes.  In that case you are will only have to deal with the weirdness of the Quantum and Relativistic geometrical structures.  It is a weirdness that will either lift you up or throw you down.  You may not be able to win for losing.  Unless, like me, you love the magic of it all.  Later I will write about the greater magic that is the mathematics of the actual Infinite.  It's simply marvelous, my dear. 

 

 

 

4355  Plato presents the Forms, the Ideas, in a flash.  It is a moment of intense seeing.  It is silent.  Then it is gone.  It is an instant of Noesis.  Then follows the long speaking and the categorizing and the formalizing.  It is the time of dianoia.  We try to remember, but the memory has faded and the thing seen dies in the process of analytic remembering.

 

Heidegger gives us the Plato of dead analysis.  Heidegger's is a philosophy of hearing and speaking, of time's living.  The instant of seeing in silence that is Plato is nowhere in Heidegger.  He has made the same mistake that Kant made.  He puts time and hearing before eternity and seeing.  He follows the Semitic way.  He thinks that Plato is dead dianoia.  He makes the stillness of ecstatic seeing be the unliving fixity of mental categories.  Heidegger has misunderstood Platonic seeing in favor of Old Testament hearing.

 

Hearing is in time.  Seeing is in an instant.  Heidegger gives us time and its overwhelming mood of absence.  The lit-up Form, the ecstatic presence is reduced to ashes in the dark fire of merely living.  Heidegger wants us to listen to the question, the unseeing.  Heidegger sleeps at the foot of Kant.  And then goes to work as a teacher. 

 

 

 

4356  Heidegger is professorial.  High Protestant seriousness.  An Old Testament listener to the word of the Lord, to Being, to the Deus Absconditus within Time's hidden manifold.  He is a prisoner of immanence.  To love to read him is to love this cloister without escape.  He is content to remain a worker in the field, in the world.  He labors in time's gathering.  He communes with the gods of the soil and human blood.  That is his only hope of avoiding the nihilism of the acidic intellect.

 

Plato is playful and Socrates is full of irony.  Vision is more important than hearing.  The timeless more than the gathering of time.  The eternal beyond the mouth of the cave is our hope, our escape, the openness unneedful of time's machinations.  The Beyond that is not dependent on time or man.  The sudden.  The manic, frightful beauty, the erotic finale.

 

To go on an intellectual date with Heidegger is to date a humorless philologist.

 

 

 

4357  The twentieth saw the triumph of the social over the transcendent gods of religion.  What power the gods formerly had society now claimed.  No more transcendence.  Now only immanence.  No more a vision of timeless things. Now only time and work.  Heidegger wanted man to find himself in the work of his hands.  He was a laborer in the mostly hidden field of life.  Even blood and soil.  The twentieth century saw man as a material being.  Substantial in his being a part of the earth and the sky.  The gods were natural forces.  Now we are in the twenty-first century and things are changing.  The social is still with us as our essence, but it has become a very thin ionized, digitalized gossamer thing.  We are being pixilated rapidly.  Material substantiality is disappearing into fleeting photons.  Nothing lasts more than a few moments.  Our pictures are sharp and brilliant and ecstatic, but they vanish immediately when the next one appears.  We speak, but it's only a momentary flash of electrons across a space that is no longer there.  We still have to speak the words of worship before society.  Society is everything.  And demands obedience.  Only now that beast is even more invisible.  Still, it totally controls what is acceptable to say and do.  We follow blindly.  To do otherwise would be to disappear from the screen.  We are slowly disappearing into the One.

 

 

 

4358  Today's philosophies of immanence offer no hope of escape.  They are very, very serious about themselves.  They are concerned.  Care consumes them.  Style, playfulness, impish irony are piously banned.  Their one and only task is to make sure that the poor souls of the world are peacefully laid to rest.  Souls racked by the anxiety that comes from having the world too much with them.  Just lie down in time's comfortable fold and try to forget.  What you did had consequences and you are that.  Still, your doing was part of the great gift you had to accept. Now the past is irretrievable.  And inexorably the future smilingly,  tirelessly waits to accept you – if there is time.

 

I want to get away from it all.  I run to a philosophy of transcendence.  I see the openness of Being beyond time.  Away with this deadly seriousness!

 

 

 

4359  Heidegger's Immanentism is most radically opposed to Plato's transcendentalism.  His (mis)interpretation of Platonic Ideas as Kantian epistemological structures leaves them as distortions of beings by the categorizing act of reason.  He thinks the Being of beings is veiled over in the false timelessness of the rational.  He rushes to take away the lifeless structures and give beings back to time. 

 

Plato agrees with Heidegger that beings are in time.  He disagrees with him that the Being of beings is Time itself.  For, Plato Being and the Ideas are separate from time and are prior to both time and beings.  And for man to contemplate Being and the Ideas is to rise above time.  For Heidegger, to contemplate Being and the structures of Being is to contemplate Time and the destiny of Being in Man.  In Heidegger, Being and Man necessarily correlate.  In Plato Being and the Ideas are separate from temporal Man and do not depend on him.  

 

 

 

4360  Everyday things are mostly absent.  They have a past and a future and another side that and yet another side that we will never see.  They far outstrip our limited vision and our limited understanding.  Thus they are the stuff of many stories gathered into long novels.  Ever unfolding we wait to see what happens next.  And we later read so many personal biographies and autobiographies and distant speculations about what might have been.  This is the world of individuals with character.

 

Ontological things stand in the full light of Presence.  The everyday world of absence is absent.  Ontological things are not the stuff of novels.  They are not individuals with unfolding character.  They are not alive in time.  They are the Instant of Seeing.  The Striking. The Flash.  Back in the everyday world we remember or we try to remember that Presence.  We grope in absence again, but we can't help thinking of the magic we momentarily saw.  If only it would come again into our dark world of the not here, not there .  The others say we saw nothing at all.  So we entertain ourselves with stories.  Stories of those who also momentarily saw then tried to remember.  Tried to make it repeat.

 

 

 

4361  In the natural world of physics and biology entropy inevitably increases.  That is to say, the ordering of sharp-line differences slowly gives way to a blur.  Things thinly deliquesce.  The body sags.    Decay breaks everything down into uniform monotony.  Form is lost.

 

In time all individuals grow together into a drift.  Ambiguity and indecision slide up and nuzzle our thoughts.  We finally disappear, mind and body, into the tasteless soup of darkness.  There's nothing here to love.

 

There are those philosophies that want to give an extensional or denotative ontological ground for all universals, all form.  For example, Red as a color, as a universal doesn't exist, supposedly, but only red things.  The number three don't exist, only triplets of things.  Humanity doesn't exist, only individual humans.  Logic as such doesn’t exist, only particular manipulations of symbols.  And so on and on.  Some things have no extension or denotation and are thus literally nothing at all.   Square circles, a whole number between six and seven, the perfect kiss, the immortal gods.  The up (or down) shot of all this is that universals don't exist, only sets of similar things.  Likewise sets don't exist, only their elements.  Finally only individuals exist.  And in the world of physics and biology they soon all fall together into one big pile.  The bland overtakes us.

 

But if universals and all ontological forms do exist aside from their extension in individual things, then we can get up and walk away from the table and leave the soup to sit by itself.

 

 

 

4362  There is one thing that most analytical philosophers have strikingly missed and, surprisingly, even many of those who have come from the line of Kant; though not here at the University of Iowa. That one thing is the transcendental unity of consciousness. It is said well is an aphorism of Aristotle: The mind is one; the world is many. Consider Wittgenstein's statements: "The world is all that is the case. The world consists of facts, not of things." A fact is a complex. It is the instantiation of a universal. The rocks are warm. That fact is complex, though not excessively so. It can be analyzed into symbols in any number of ways. Then there is the thought of that fact. That thought is not itself complex. It is a simple thing, the transcendental unity of that complex, namely the idea [The rocks are warm]. That simple thing, that idea, can, in fact, be exemplified by many individuals. You just did. It is one and the same universal that is exemplified. The transcendental unity of consciousness is a simple thought of a complex fact. And that thought is a universal. Or so, my dear, I would have you agree, but I see that you hesitate.

The problem is that thoughts, unlike fiery sense, are almost invisible. They are colorless, placeless and so very fleeting. They are totally transparent. They are completely perspicuous. And they are so intimately what we are that we have trouble backing off to get a look at them. They vanish almost as soon as thought. Almost, but not so soon that we are not aware of our own thinking. And that it is a simple unity.

 

 

 

4363  I'm going to attempt to write in a few paragraphs something I just read in David Rosen about Plato and revolution.  It is something I know very little about.  Political theory.  Bear with me. 

 

The philosopher, as one of the wise men, alone with his friends, tells of how there is no truth, no stable form, no divinely inspired order to things.  All is convention.  All is fleeting ambiguity.  Here, the philosopher is a private person, speaking behind walls. 

 

The political man deals with the masses, the many, in the public forum.  He dare not speak what the philosopher, the wise man, really believes.  The public will not have it.  Rather, through the use of rhetoric, he gives the people what they want to hear and they do as he wants.  But what is it the people want to hear?

 

The many, the people, have two levels of belief.  Outwardly, exoterically, from roof tops, they praise the good and the noble, the ancient true ways, the courageous ways, the strenuous life of work and sacrifice.  And they want the politician to uphold the rigor of a lawful life.  But esoterically, secretly, they want the politician to support them in their inner belief that it is pleasure that defines all those other things they so forcefully, outwardly, asserted.  They believe that the strong deserve to get more.  They are more like the private wise men in believing that only motion and change and convention are real.  That all else is just a noble lie.

 

And now along comes the professor, the intellectual, a person half-private, half-public in his job at the university.  He wants to agree that all is only convention, that there is no truth, that all things succumb to the motion of minute invisible bodies.  He will even, maybe timidly, assert that, but then he will quickly add that we must be rigorous in honoring the establishment of truth and objectivity and good order.  His university as a place of high tradition has kept society strong.  He tries to say both things even though they contradict.  He will even take his students out for dinner and drinking and let them know that he too is a man of the people.  He also knows the pleasures of life.  But you cannot honor convention and truth at the same time.  Nor rigor and pleasure.  He tries, he must, and he suffers.  The intellectual as public servant is a twisted animal.

 

I'm sure I will rewrite this after I understand it better, or I will give up trying.  I live behind walls. I write and I do send it out but only for others behind walls. I am not a public intellectual. Strangely, I do join pleasure and the unchanging Forms. Or maybe not. What should I think of the Internet?

 

 

 

4364  I live half the year in Kathmandu, Nepal with side trips to India.  I know the look and feel of poverty and squalor.  I know street hustlers and hopelessness.  I have not walked over it all like a tourist and casual visiting scholar.  I have bathed in its light.  The other half of the year I come to neat and clean America.  I glide over the slick pages of the internet.  Orderliness and sincere concern tingle in the thin, ionized air.  Rapid analysis and swift hyper-threading connect the mind.  We are one in virtual emotion.  And I wonder which is worse.  The painful look of the hustler's deception that I feel there or the smooth, perfect, photonic honesty that I see here?  The first is honest deception; the second is nauseating deceptive honesty.  It's always a relief to get away from here.

 

 

 

4365  Reading, writing and thinking are solitary acts.  There has never been a case of a good work of art or philosophy or any other creative act being produced by a group.  Today, when the social is so very powerful, it is almost impossible to find anything more than fragments of what might have been.  This is not to say that good, very good, works don't exist; it's just that the great Ghost of Society and the Group more powerfully push it down than ever before, because they are simply bigger now.  So how does one escape and find a place of solitude?

 

Kierkegaard has superbly given us the dialectic.  Outside the group, there is the existential Absurd, the God of the solitary individual.  Without that transcendent Nowhere, the group will crush your mind to a confused pulp. 

 

It is commonly thought that because philosophy began in dialogue form, with Plato writing about Socrates and his wily companions, that philosophy should arise out of a type of conversation.  And so we have college classes filled with arguing students.  The classes achieve nothing except turn people off to philosophy.  Those Dialogues are deceptive.  They aren't really conversations by the lovers of wisdom; they are creations out of the mind of Plato.  He is always silent and it is in that silence that we encounter the whole scene.

 

I am saying that now, just as always, it is the individual alone, going out to meet the Alone, that reads and writes and thinks.  I will call that the soul with God.  I call it that knowing that it is an apotropaic spell and it will help chase the group away.

 

 

 

4366  For quite a few years now I have been interested in the relation between philosophy and style.  The word "style", in this case, can of course refer to more than just the style of writing.  The style of dress and movement by the philosopher or the philosopher's intended object are also important.  As is his style of thinking.  And so much more.  Rhythm seems to be an essential element of style.  Repetition, difference, remembering, forgetting, the eternal return, the inevitable leaving, around and around, a dance, sometimes smooth and sweet, sometimes severed and hanging.  And, of course, the Word that is Being  is highly  rhetorical.  Style, Honey, style.  What are we to think of it?  Is it distraction and an impediment on the way to truth?  Or is it the substance of truth itself?  Lovely and urgent questions.  And after all these years I still cannot, but somehow I can, speak the relation well.  Anyway, please look at the two entries on Grammar as Style that I have put in the upper right-hand corner of this page.  They are old books but very, very good and a delight.  One is 16 and the other 23 MB, I hope that is not too big for your type of connection. 

 

 

 

4367   Consider these things: a universal (let's say Raging), a particular (x), a connector (is), a fact (x is Raging).  Those are four ontologically different things.  Consider a fact (x is Raging), a thought ([x is Raging]), a connector (Intends), the act ([x is Raging] Intends x is Raging).   Again there are four ontologically separate things.

 

The idea, the fact, the connector and the act.  Those are four things. 

 

There is no further connector between universal, particular, the connector (is) and the fact.  And there is no further connector between fact, idea, the connector (Intends) and the act.  

 

The question about whether or not every fact is a part of an act is that no fact is a part of an act.  An act is something other than the facts and the idea.  We know that simple things and facts and acts exist, but which ones and how many we cannot speculate on knowingly.  Perhaps all.  Who knows?

 

I know it seems strange, mighty strange, unthinkably strange, to say that a complex and "its constituents" are separate.  Nonetheless, that is ontology.  Ontology is not the everyday.   In ontology we reach the limits of thought.  Period.  I, we, write to deal with that.  Always badly. 

 

 

 

4368  Abel offered up an animal sacrifice to God, and Cain offered up fruits and grain.  God preferred Abel's offering and he rejected that of Cain.  This story has nothing to do with killing and ecology.  Separating grain and fruit from its branch is just as much an act of killing as is cutting the neck of an animal.  It is rather a story of God choosing one person and his offering over another.  The Bible is filled with such irrational divisions.  Anyway, we know that Cain felt jealous and he killed Abel.  Cain was unloved.  It's easy to feel sorry for him.  We are also, most of the time, the unloved one.  Things happen.

 

 

 

 

 

4369  As the philosopher goes farther and farther out along the road of ontology, the existents that appear become more and more rarified.  More and more uncontrollable.  Questionable, beautiful, laughable, demanding.  Madness is close.  He inevitably becomes a theologian. 

 

Or just simply don't go there.  Draw a critical line in the shifting sand.  A warning to others.  A protection for the people.  A sad giving up.

 

Let's think about triangularity.  Think about the one form that all triangles share or share in.  That form is also united with the form of shape.  And extension.  And on and on upwards.  And again there is its existence and its form of being a form.  And difference itself that grounds its being different from all other things.  Of course, it is the same as all other shapes in that they are all shapes, so there is also sameness.  And it is a particular in that it is a particular form, but it’s a particular that's not the same particular that exemplifies it.  Think of the set and the setness of all triangles.  And of the thought of triangle and of the thought of that thought.  The ontological things pile in and you have to make a choice.  Either you can try to ride this wild pony of thought or you can declare it all nonsense.  If you choose the later you will be praised by the many.  If the former, you will walk on alone and perhaps find your love.

 

 

 

4370  I have recently seen quite a bit about causality written up on the Internet philosophy blogs.  Not much hard analysis is written, and perhaps I should say instead that the word is talked up a lot just as though this were the Middle Ages or the time of Newton and forces.  The popular word today is the Latin vis conatus.  The science that is being presented belongs to the past.  We even hear talk, so strangely resurrected, about process.  Vis conatus, process, causality, and, of course, Spinoza and Leibniz.  The real is defined as that which actually causes another thing to be different.  The real flows from the real.  Time and space are joined in processes of the real.  Oh my!  Space and time and cause and processes disappeared from science a long time ago. And forces haven't been with us now what seems like forever.  Why this resurrection of the old philosophies.  Is it a part of the general return to the Middle Ages that we find in Fantasy literature?  Or did.  If so then philosophy has become poetry.  Hurray!  We all love poetry, but it's not philosophy.  And it’s bad philosophy of science.

 

 

 

4371  With Des Cartes we see substance as extended.  It is broken up; it has parts.  Again with Leibniz we see substance again as unextended, as having no parts.  In modern physics we see particles and fields.  The former are like Des Cartes' pieces of extension.  Fields are as in Leibniz.  As long as we stay with fields we are in a deterministic theory, a process theory, a theory of continuous events.  When we jump to particles, when the field collapses, determinism gives way, processes disappear and the discontinuous unsettles smooth thought.

 

Today's fight against Des Cartes is a fight against the broken up, the bare particular, the distinct forms.  It is a reassertion of the smooth unity of the simple substance.  Continuous lines of change give order to understanding.  Everything is explainable as a trajectory of history.  Randomness and the sudden are gone.  The irrational and the broken line vanish.  Events and processes blend into a holistic body.  Hindus believe that the earth and all material existence is the dismembered Primal Man, Purusa.  In process theology, the smooth body of that God is made whole.  Des Cartes is the devil in the mix.

 

 

 

4372  Is this the most beautiful prose sentence ever written?  It is the last line of Plato's Apology.

 

The hour of departure has arrived, and we go our ways--I to die, and you

to live.  Which is better God only knows.

 

 

 

4373  Socrates and Jesus are the two most important figures in my view of philosophy.  I know that "figures" is a strange word, but I can't think of any other word to use.  Both are hard to love, but they both elicit strong love from me.  Neither is a fit object of comedy, if comedy is the act of knocking the air out of high-flying, self-important persons.  They are both already flat on the ground, down in the most unlovely, unbecoming positions.  They are thus objects of irony, if irony is the act of somehow seeing the true elevation of someone or something that appears to all as the most abject.  Permit me to describe my vision of the outward form of these two.

 

Jesus is a whiner.  He complains always about the inability of the people to understand or to want to understand.  He wants to get away.  He is anything but a Hindu saint sitting blissfully full of love.  He came only to be sacrificed.  A nonsensical idea.  His parables make no sense.  He argues with the theologians.  He could have done so much good, but he did nothing.  He was unbecoming, without any semblance of power in body, spirit or intellect.  He was a whiner.  And I love this guy.

 

Socrates was nasty.  He was base.  He played the game of jealousy.  What he meant was the opposite of what he apparently said.  Contradiction and irony.  He was ugly and he demanded to be loved by the loveliest.  And the lovely did so.  He could have saved himself, but he killed himself.  He propounded grand arguments that a college freshman can see through.  He led Athens into the twisted paralysis of argumentative thought.  He was possessed.  He was also the purest thinker that has ever lived.  He was and is the model of true philosophy.  Just as Jesus is the object.  Only Saint Paul matched his offensiveness.  And I love this guy.

 

Kierkegaard described faith in terms of being in love.  Suppose your beloved is outwardly just bad news.  Everyone tells you to dump this guy.    He's leading you on.  He has no beauty, strength, money, intelligence or anything else that would make him lovable.  But still you love him and believe in him.  That is faith – so contrary to reason.  Christian and Philosophical.  And so I hang out with the flighty boys of the soft romance and wonder at how it is all so mysterious.  Divine beings hover around me.

 

 

 

4374  A professor of philosophy, and likewise those who would be so, finds himself in a strange predicament.  He must be true to himself.  He places supreme value on intellectual honesty.  And in the quiet of his own room he talks to himself reminding himself of his obligation.  He does his best.  But he is a public servant and he is greatly restricted by what can be uttered out loud in public.  The Public has an evil eye.  If there is a conflict – and there will inevitably be a conflict - What to do?

 

As for a blog.  Is it a place for private and true thoughts?  Or is it a place to practice being an employee of a public institution?  Is a blog a place to make rough drafts of articles that will later have to be submitted for review by the authorities that be?  One has one's reputation to think of.  It will follow you forever.  Be careful.  Be very careful. 

 

 

 

4375  Materialism is the philosophy of the people because the magical arising of all the Forms of Nature out of primal matter is the stuff of myth itself. The people love myth. They love the sudden terror in the story. They love the mystical unfolding. Just as an old lady sitting with a ball of string and two needles can make knitted enchantment appear to cover your naked body, so the telling of myth, now called science, shows the evolution of all the bewildering signs out of the elemental strings and poetic measure knit together for our homely understanding. You cannot take the proto-philosophy of materialism away from the people and give them unchanging transcendent abstractions. They will have none of it. They like the mixing bowl, the swirl of spring waters that give rise to life and marvels. They do not want reason; they want the spectral dream.

 

 

4376  Platonism vs. Chaos Theory. Imagine, I know you have many times, a smooth, well-turned arm. It is a simple form.  Smooth and round. His arm. You fall into the sheer simplicity of it.  It is from forever. The intellect sees. Love performs is act instantly. The end of knowing is at hand. The one.

Imagine, of course you already have, taking a closer look at that arm. The smooth surface down and down onto the surface breaks and ridges and rivulets appear, caverns and colonies, whole worlds of other creatures, strange formations, crooked protrusions, cilia, somatological wonders. The smooth and final thing disappears into other sub-worlds and unknowing populations of things with other concerns. Simplicity becomes ever increasing complexity. Love never had a chance.

Simplicity vs. the uncontrollably complex.  Which is the real? It appears that this world is the latter and the former is an old and far dream. Still, we knew and yet know the simplicity whenever we lower our eyes as though away from the world and in the Instant see through the bars of this vermin infested cell out onto the night of pure things.

 

 

4377  The popular nexus of our time is as it has always been. Perhaps it is grounded in the frightening holiness of giving birth. It is the edge of thought. It is still confusion. It is the appearing. Here we are with both myth and science. The unfolding, the evolving. It is the emerging and the rising out of. It is the philosopher who casually says that the proper causes and conditions give rise to the phenomena. Between the under things and the over thing there is this magical nexus. Somehow the nether world creates the over world. The pain of the one who went down explodes into the Over-man. Two realms, many words to name the one miraculous nexus between then. Unfold, evolve, rise, give rise to, cause, create, but also lure, seduce, delude the mind into imaginings. One nexus, many names. But I plod and implode in returning synonymy.

Imagine the water of a magical spring. Clear and simple with a heavy slow movement. Hypnotic. It all arises from under ground. From the place of vermin and demons. And even now we are led into the perplexing world of atoms and quanta and bent space. So many things to think about. The Brahman priests of science keep it all in proper order. And we spend long dark hours learning to speak it properly. The time of thought cracks open and spirit fumes flee. Simple water has become its under things. Simplicity arises out of tangled proto-thought. Animals proliferate. Vines spawn. The Nexus of giving rise to, of giving birth to, of divine creation spins the thoughts of the young. Water flows overhead in simple spectral brilliance.

 

 

 

4378  There are two forms of logic that guide us. The one is the logic of metamorphosis, X transforms into Y. The other is the fixed calculus, X is Y. The first is the logic of myth. The second is the hated distortions of Platonic decadence – or so it is often said nowadays. Surely, it is said, in the under places is a dynamic engine. A birth machine. A dark furnace. An energy hole. Things move. But then proto-boundaries begin to harden. The fixed world of cold night appears. The Cosmos. Or so it is said. Daffodils grow out of seething mud. The human out of warm humus. The lark eventually arises out of hot lava. All the lovely things arise magically out of the horrid mothers. And return. It is said. Things slowly transform into their opposite. And then the engine goes into reverse.

 

I have never hated the fixed calculus, nor spoken ill of it.  Blasphemy scares me. The sky overcomes me. I am other.

 

 

 

4379  Saintsbury says this is also among the very beautiful.  It is by De Quincey.  I rewrote it according to my style.

 

And her eyes if they were ever seen would be neither sweet nor subtle; no man could read their story; they would be found filled with perishing dreams and with wrecks of forgotten delirium.

 

And his eyes, if they were ever seen, would be neither sweet nor subtle.  No man could read their story.  They would be found filled with perishing dreams.  And with wrecks of forgotten delirium.

 

 

 

26xx  As you read these replies you will, no doubt, be taken aback by something awful in them, something reprehensible.  I have replied to his very black, saddened anguish and anger with happy philosophical analysis.  I had no choice, I am the philosopher's philosopher and it was that very nature that he found insipid and wanted free of.  The poet loves the twilight places and the darkened savor of things.  The philosopher sees only the Light without shadow.  The philosopher knows the lucidity of consciousness and its glistening pure cut.  The poet loves the deep places where light cannot penetrate, the enfolded.  The poet loves the not-knowing, the almost known.  The philosopher loves the knowing clear through.  The poet finds the philosopher childish and superficial and speaking with a tinny voice.  The poet loves his friends in the deep well of intimacy.  The philosopher is alone with his Light.  This young man may balk at my calling him a poet, but he is; he is awash with the canonical spirit of western literature, the strangely beautiful.    

 

 

 

 

4381  Here are a number of paragraphs about Graham Harman.  If you are reading this you are one of the very few.  Mr. Harman himself will never read it.  And if he did he would not find it to his taste.  I write about him simply because the allure of his dense philosophical magma, that object, that published mass, is sucking me in and I am fighting for an escape.  He is definitely not my type, but I may yet find an idea or two to steal.  I'm having fun.  Nothing heavy going on here.  The boys in the pictures keep me company and chase away the shitheads.

 

 

Every intention has its object.  Very well, the object of my intention and my tension is the boy.  The Boy.  He is the aim of my object-oriented ontology.  What is he, that, the one?  Let's separate him from his sensual qualities, just as any good ontologist would.  Maybe an eidetic reduction.  The object.  The Object.  He looms large. 

 

Aside from the fleshly ether, the sensual manifold, the field of subtle communication, what do we have?  What is this object?  Surely it, he, is not a plenum, a swelter of more sensuous layers.  We are now beyond all that.  Well, my dear, there is only one thing left.  He is nothing, nothing at all, the empty sky.  A shot to the head.  The strike of oblivion.  Just That.  The Boy.  That thing I know perfectly in an unknowing.  The Presence before every mere presence.  The still, resounding night.  The place of love's mad – Bham! nothing.  He, it, is Perfection as are all the pure forms.  That, lovely thinker, is the purity of the pure.  There's nothing mysterious and "deep" about it.  The only withdrawing to be done is his biting rejection of you.  Your clumsy come-ons didn't help.  He is anyway just the emptiest of the empty.  What did you really want?  That. 

 

So is the Form of the Boy any different from the other multitude of Forms in its being just nothing, sheer emptiness.  No.  That is the lovely night of the godhead.  All else is sensuality, luscious, decadent, plain, simple, whatever you like.  A sort of Nirvana in the crucified Christ.  

 

He's a Number.

 

 

 

4382  I think the mistake that so many make in their thinking of the object beyond the sensual ether is in thinking that that object is just more sensual mass added onto infinity.  It isn't sensual at all.  And when mind is turned toward it, not looking for more sensuality, it finds a purity beyond all that.  It does find it.  It is not hard to see with your non-sensual seeing.  Yes Honey, you can do it right easily.  Just believe and do it.  We are now in the realm of the Platonic Forms.  The most rarified.  The most subtle allure.  The fine hair of the languid god.  The faint.  The last moment before it's all over.  Or else you are back in lush sensuality.

 

 

 

4383  Choosing a philosophy is also a matter of taste.  And in judging a philosophy we should not simply try to turn someone around toward our taste.  To each his own and that is enough.  Thus, in writing about the guerrilla metaphysics of Graham Harman, I may contrast his ideas and taste with mine, but I will never persuade him of the correctness of what I like over his.  That would make no sense and it would be a waste.   It is true that in his writings he seems to present an either/or of it's either his way or the way of an idealist phenomenology.  I suspect that that dualism is merely a literary devise for focusing an idea.  There are, of course, other alternatives.  Likewise, there are many ways of interpreting some writer's philosophy and of seeing it expressed in the imagination within the imagination's images.  Let me tell you how I see Graham Harman's philosophy.  He will probably find it laughable and sad, but at least I am more than willing to leave it with him, if it is even somewhat correct.

 

It seems to me that the world he describes is that of a sensuous woman.  Being is a female, or should I say, the Goddess of chthonic allure.  That's not to my taste, but who am I to say.  That is the very thing that the Boy escapes.  Camille Paglia describes that chthonic goddess with great style.  I can appreciate such a thing even as I move violently away from it. Even Harman's object in its withdrawing and absence and dark cavernous, subterranean (Oh My!) places that give rise to, give birth to, the outer seen world are so obviously the female.  And the liquid inner movements, the molten core, the on and on … so female.  And the impossibility of ever knowing or grasping it.  I leave the horrid thing to him.  I'm already to split.  And I am aware that the goddess will hear nothing of the boys that decorate my writings and will not allow her priests to associate with them.

 

 

 

4384  Sri Graham Harman, the propounder of the Atman, drives home to our waiting, reading mind, the I-self of all things.  A noble, philosophically worthy act.  He is a pleasure to read.  The manifold forms flicker in the solar wind.  The as-be from out of the I am that I am becomes for us a world as god. 

 

There is Being, the inner self of the self of all things, and the modes and moods of Being where Being finds itself as this and that and overcome with the one and the many.  Honey, it’s too much.  I faint before the inevitable falling into the molten core. 

 

Or is it sheer nothing?  Atman, the breath, the intimate, the just itself.  So negligible.  Every second sacrificing itself into itself, gone, had, manhandled gently by all of us.

 

On the banks of the Nile, Sri Harman has met the one who is the one and only.  The one without equal.  The moon of the moon.  He sits and stares.  This god of many faces.  So distracting.

 

 

 

4385  It's inevitable, all philosophy becomes theology.  And the fight against that is just the boy trying to push off the too insistent advances of this lover of overwhelming presence.  Our only hope is in our not being taken at our word.  The human would fain speak the truth but is disinclined.  Your great explanations are just an occasion for his looking away into himself.  Waiting to be taken.  The self wraps itself in itself and metaphysics has captured the beloved it always wanted.  A simplicity beyond explanation.

 

 

 

4386  Harman calls himself a realist and so do I.  His realism resides in the object; I have no objects in my philosophy. He does, rather timidly, speak of the object as having an essence.  And that substance is rather different from the object as unified qualities and relations, still essence and substance as different from object is not to be had.  My realism, not having objects, has full blown essences, which are really universals or Platonic Forms, plus bare particulars which exemplify the Forms.  I, then, of course, will have to have a tie or nexus to bring them together into a fact, an instantiation of the Form.  And on and on, all of which I imagine would leave the mind of Harman waiting about until the good stuff arrives.  Where would he put all of these extra things I claim to have seen out there?  I think he would begrudgingly try to find a place for them.

 

The advantage Graham Harman has with his theory of individual objects, over my abstract things, is that he can indulge in his favorite pastime of reading history and biographies.  The past unfolds from out of the depths of the person, the times and the things populating our world.  I have a world, or rather an unworld, of timeless beings that sparkle and scintillate and lift up the mind into the azure serenity, but no story is revealed.  I never really liked stories anyway.  De gustibus non disputandum est.  At least, he would not, I suspect, accuse me of white imperialism, of destroying the earth, of savage unconcern, as would Derrida, and as some of my friends still do. 

 

 

 

4387  In the true Islamic spirit, Graham Harman does not want to make an idol out of anything.  No onto-theology, no Being as this or that, no God with us.  God, Being, remains ever and evermore transcendent.  Untouched.  But I, because I am Christian, an idolater, take the Boy of God as Being itself, God seen with the eyes, heard with the ears, tasted with the tongue, present in full Presence.  Touched.

 

His God, Being, remains absent and since all we have are words that finally fail he writes long books travelling through layer after layer, all the while telling us that he and we will never arrive at our intended object.  What's the point?  I write short pieces and I say, There, just that. The final thing has appeared and now our gaze is upon it.  Idolatry.  And I eat it and drink it in. 

 

 

 

4388  Among those phenomenologically inclined, there are those who believe that we are directly aware of such ontological things as universals, bare particulars and all sorts of nexus; and then there are those who believe that those fine things can be dialectically shown to be necessary, even though we are not directly aware of them.  It seems to me we do see them directly, but then maybe, being nice to myself, I will only say that my seeing is somehow different.  Anyway, Graham Harman seems to believe that such things, or objects, withdraw and we don't see them.  Whatever the case, we both believe that they are not part of everyday vision.  He would probably discount my "philosophical" seeing.  Though it seems to me that he does the same thing himself; otherwise his words point to nothing at all.

 

Ontological thing, object, element etc. are not "ordinary".  Philosophers disagree about just what that list of extra-ordinary things contains.  What are the "elements" of Being?  What has ontological status?  What gods haunt our earth?  What things enchant?

 

Like all philosophers, Graham wants to stay as close to reality as possible.  He doesn't want to be seen as, or really be, mad.  And thus his objects always try to keep one foot in the everyday world and another in enchantment.  But you can't be in both.  He needs to accept the allure of the object itself by smashing it into its bare particular and its essence.  And then that essence into its "nature" and its "internal" particular or item making it be just that essence and not another.  The enchantment swims the mind in its analytical maze. 

 

Oh, come on, Graham, I've been to Cairo; I've seen those back street, dark-eyed beauties.  I know the allure.  I have felt my soul being snatched away.  I have felt myself come undone.  Your need to stay away is understandable, considering your job and all, but, philosophically speaking,  … things happen.

 

Don't be like most of your blog buddies who seem to have no sense of the allure.  Sometimes, in a time away, that unseen, withdrawn thing shows itself and the night works itself into oblivion.  Surprisingly hot and naked and pouring forth. 

 

 

 

4389  Philosophy ranges between two poles.  At the far negative end is absolute nihilism.  There you will find no truth, no existence, no knowledge, no meaning to anything, only the absence of everything.  It is a perfect dreamless sleep.  Nagarjuna, the great Buddhist philosopher that I love, is there.  The nothing that does nothing.  Blank.

 

At the other positive pole there is not only truth, but there is final Truth, and it is known directly and perfectly.  Without an intermediary and without knowing it only in part.  Here is perfect and full existence.  Here is total awareness.  The soul is itself known perfectly and it has the full existence of Being itself.  The soul is loved and in love.  The End is reached.  Blanking out. 

 

Somewhere between these two poles there is the middle ground of knowing but only through metaphor and with distortion.  A sort of knowing that there is something real but it is totally unreachable in itself and so we deal the best we can with ad hoc substitutes.  Imperfection is all about and finitude and finally the nothingness of death.  Too bad, so sad.  We will all pretend otherwise by speaking always the Noble Lie of happiness in acceptance of our humble fate.  A fate worse than nothing.

 

 

 

4390  Guerrilla Metaphysics by Graham Harman is a hot house phenomenology.  It has its lush pleasures for those who love the rich sensual press of life.  Who like the crowded streets of thought's metaphor.  Who want to taste the flesh in all its solar and lunar forms.  It is the swarm of beings within the ether.  It is the dark absence of essence.  It is the luxurious volcanic magma of the real.  The text is very closely woven and a headwind blows repeatedly back at you throughout it.  Again it is a fine woolen carpet teeming with beings from out of the underworld of objects.  It is far from my simple ontological abstractions hanging in the sheerness of love's night and its plain speech. 

 

 

 

4391  In the Bhagavata Purana, part of the Hindu scriptures telling the story of Krishna, there is the Rasa Lila.  What happens is questionably immoral even for devout.  Or is it?  Can the Brahman priests spin it around and make it high spirituality?  Certainly by today's high moralism it is not only morally wrong, it is very illegal.  It concerns the young, beautiful Krishna, exactly 15 years, 9 months, 7 and one half days old – or so the pundits have calculated.

 

 

 

4392  When your philosophical beauty drops and you stand there naked, then the allure.  Then the great system that clothed you in its fine, tight weavings unravels into loose entanglement and you are without its protection.  The cold wind of being seen brushes up against you so smoothly and you faint into the bare object you are.  The bare particular.  Just that, Honey.  You were never anything else.  Knowledge is now somewhere else and it knows even you.  You exist out in the open.

 

Philosophy is a performance.  It is burlesque.  You show up, show off, and it comes off as nothing.  Your reveal yourself in your nakedness.  That's all there is to it.  We were after your existence, not your tattered, old knowledge.  Right in class, right in front of the students you come undone.  And the dean could walk in at any moment.  You have no face, but you have a big dick.  History licks you up as it did all the others.  And you become eternal, a scary final Thing.

 

 

 

4393  Concerning honor killings in Asia, the order to kill comes down from the Grandmother or Great Aunt.  The men and the boys of the family would just as soon let it be and forget it.  Brothers don't want to kill their sister.  They have absolutely nothing to gain from it except a dead, loved sister.  The boys, for the most part, only want to play with their new electronic gadgets admire their looks in a mirror, have fashionable clothes, and sit around and talk.  And these family matters, all this worry about getting money and taking care of the family is wearing them down.  They just want to have mobiles, laptops and watch movie CDs.  And the older men, they just want to drink and sit around.  Killing is something the old ladies force on them.  The wayward girl is destroying their majestic power.  She must be dealt with.  For the old Powers, control is everything.  Boys and their fashion and gadgets, the men and their liquor, are trifles.  They are the pawns of the Powerbrokers.  It's a heavy thing.  A deep order to things.  The old ladies, and they alone, decide who marries who.  The young upstart girl must learn where power lies.  She must learn the respect so in her time she will own it.  The men and boys with their playthings are useful only as the ones who are sent out to get money, nothing more.  The essence and the power of the family rests dead with the old ladies.  It has been like this for millennia.

 

 

 

4394  We sense sensa; we perceive objects.  Some would say, not believing in objects, that we perceive facts.  Sensing is sensing; perceiving is perceiving.  What is sensed, what is perceived, is what changes.  Not the nature of sensing and perceiving itself.  From the most rudimentary to the most subtle, the range stretches out before the mind's imagination.  It is vast.  Man, no doubt, senses and perceives only a small segment of what is there.  So how are we to think of that other?  Perhaps we can stretch ourselves out in place in Being, but I surmise only a little.  Still, sensing and perceiving are known fully and completely.  Sensing is sensing; perceiving is perceiving.

 

Man is not alone in sensing and perceiving.  Are all sensa and all object/facts perceived?  Is everything known after the manner of sensing and perceiving?  Is there an ever transcendent something so close, so unreachable?  Essentially unreachable?  Who knows?

 

Can we, through eidetic reduction or dialectical analysis of some kind, establish the absolute impossibility of unsensed sense and unperceived objects of perception?  Are facts necessarily thought?  I can't.  I wait on the others to do the trick.

 

The god of philosophy is an impish, incorrigible, free, tyrannical, empty-headed beauty.  Good luck.  You will lose.  And in the allure we will all see your bare existence.  We are trapped in the sheen of violent perfection. 

 

 

 

4395  Let's say you are an object-oriented philosopher.  Your mind and your philosophizing are oriented toward objects.  It's strange, but it does happen.  An object looms up ahead.  Muse-like notes emanate from it (or whatever the outpouring is called) and you come undone in the radiance of its beauty.  Allure!  You are caught.  So you begin the words, the gentle lilt.  Not analysis, not poetry, not a very sensible thing to do, but you are unable to resist.  And you are embarrassed by your own smooth writing.  What it that thing or unthing?  Let's say it is Q.  Or in the jargon of the day, it is Object Q.  And here I have a question.  Let's say someone just like you a million years ago on a distant, green planet discovered the same Object Q.  Is it literally the same Object Q?  If I understand the very idea of objects correctly, though I very much doubt such a correct understanding could exist, then objects are not in either time or space, but rather time and space are mysteriously "produced" within them.  (We will let the absurdity slide.)  Then we can surely say that the Object is timeless and placeless and, Yes, my dear, it is literally the same Object Q that is so neatly seen by both of you (or at least could be).  Thus we can say rather triumphantly that it is a Universal of the type called a Structure, i.e.  a thing that in a simplified schema is called an ordered relation.  Are objects just universals?  I think so.  Or what? 

 

 

 

4396  The real world is with us and we bend and we work to change the undesired into the desired.  And we are convinced that we can only go so far.  The walls are hard and will not give.  The cold remains.  His absence is eternal.  The world is stuck.  Is it all that way because we have accepted so many suggestions that it is so?  Have we fallen prey to hypnotic suggestion?  Could we have been led, through a different line of suggestion, to find ourselves living in a totally different world?  Or is it all indifferent to suggestion?  Let's look at the world we find ourselves in.  Timelines have led all of us here.  Time is the master.  And here is not there.  Place holds us in place.  What is is.  Unless … unless it is otherwise. 

 

 Timelines, those damn timelines.  Are the quantum theorists correct in saying that there are many timelines all leading here and you choose one to give yourself a past and the things around you?  You could have chosen differently.  Or perhaps you already did as one of the so many other selves that you are.  Well, yes, they are right.  It seems obvious.  But now what?  The walls are just as hard and the cold is still cold and he will never come back.  Infinity works its wonders wonderfully, but, it seems, not right here.  Though, of course, many could very successfully argue otherwise. 

 

The real sits here real heavy and argument is powerless.  That too may be suggestion and I suppose it is, but so what?  I remember a young friend who took too many drugs who lost the ability to always distinguish between the real and a dream.  It was a hellish feeling, he said.  There is something comforting in the conservatively inert.  It's the boy who wants a leash to hold him near home so he doesn't accidently wander too far in his imaginings.  It's the revolutionary who wants to go home to an unchanged room at night.  Yes, the world is open to suggestion, but we are not ready.  Like Peter, we begin to sink when we try to walk on water.  It takes fine belief, which none of us have nor could tolerate right now. 

 

So many timelines, so many futures to choose from, they're all there.  Choose all of them.  You already have.  Mind fuck!  The mathematics is easy, but you fell asleep in algebra class and you dreamed up this mess.  What are you going to do?

 

 

 

 

4397  Some facts are real, others are merely possible.  Paris really is the capitol of France, but Nice could be in another world.  The real world and possible worlds.  Instead of real, let's call it the actual world.  Actual vs. potential.  Actual facts vs. potential facts.  We can think both. 

 

Actuality and Potentiality are themselves ontological entities that come to rest on indifferent facts.  Humor me, I'm about to make a point.  Look about, your hair is red, it isn't red.  Your wallet has a hundred dollar bill in it, it doesn't.  Some facts are pervaded by actuality, some by mere potentiality.  Dream your favorite dream.  I know you love that dream.  It is more real that the merely actual.  There you are.  There's a philosophical point in that.  Think about it.  Think about it hard.  And when you think of what it is, email me, because I certainly don't know what it is. 

 

 

 

4398  In Idealism the world we see is a "product" of the mind.  The mind thinks it, makes it be, then leads it out into an outside also of its own creation.  The world exists, but it is an existence dependent on mind.  In today's so-called "realism", the world we see is also the creation of mind, but there seems to be a reality beyond which mysteriously prompts the mind into act.  Such conjecture.  Such faith.  Such mystical trauma.  And though it's an enchantment, it's questionable.

 

I am proudly a very naïve realist, so abused.  The world I directly see, so colorful, so fragrant, so rushing by, is not the creation of my mind, nor of any act of mind, human, angelic or bestial.  It just is.  And why have any unseen, untouchable, dark horror beyond?  The world is magnificently out.  There is no inside to be in.  The world is a show-off god for your pleasure.  And in the turning turning sickness of the love-sick he is most prominently there.  Right there.

 

 

 

4399  The ideal intellectual is a loving bear of a man.  A great figure filled with overflowing regard of mankind.  A one who is helpful to the lowliest, but not patronizingly so.  He knows and he knows how to be more than just thought thinking pure thought.  He will make you smile and want to be like him – just as soon as the passions of youth have past.

 

The true intellectual, a servant of the state, an employee in the machine of a renowned university.  A man who shares the wealth he accrues, though it be only enough for the middling existence of the middle class.  A one you can eat and drink with and deeply chat.

 

Though he knows the utter impossibility of all endeavors, intellectual and practical, and though he knows that all our truths are untrue, he nobly advances the great creative cause of civilization.  He is a man of ideals, though not the vicious high exaggerated ideals that have led to fascistic demonism.  He is moderately ideal.  He is even moderate about his nihilism and skepticism and pleadings with the mystically so unreachably right there – even that one who disrupts his class with his foolish questions.  Yes, he is a moderate unbeliever who wants to be culturally creative in that freedom from a tyrannical God.  He is on Man's side, not God's, unless God is with him – which is questionable, but maybe we can make it work.  The ideal intellectual is a man who is trying to do his best at making the solitary act of thinking deeply be a public endeavor.  He's a twisted soul.  

 

 

 

4400  Look at this picture.  Look at the form that is no longer a living, breathing being.  That lovely form, the mere form, the magical presence, is here.  Time stops.  It is a stopping that is death to the being it was.  We remember.  We see.  The thing itself, unencumbered by life, by mere life, is now never and always.  Time vanishes.  Such is decadence.  Such is the beauty of the beautiful.  It's a frightening thing.  Without it, life, mere life, fades.  The eternal is so alluring.  And there is no allure without death and the It is not now.  We enter another place.

 

The modern lovers of life and process have not felt the pangs of beauty past and the rising up here again.  Risorgimento, mio amato, alto alto.  The Eternal Forms squeeze the heart.  There is no let up.

 

 

 

4401  Fascism, communism, capitalism, high school football, it's all the same.  It's regimentation.  It's teamwork.  It's the military unit.  The individual is kicked out.  Kicked far out.  That is efficiency.  That is how man overcomes great obstacles.  That is the way of science.  Teamwork, regimentation, one goal.  It's how the CIA works.  It's how the New York Symphony works together.  It's how a great university achieves fame.  One idea.  One method.  One focused goal.  Teamwork!  And that is definitely not how the mountain fighters in Afghanistan go about things.  Each taking off on his own with his stylish baseball cap and Adidas.  By himself.  Living, watching, waiting to die alone into the paradise of the the One.  Who will win?  Will technology and efficiency and the friendly, smiling coach and his team overcome those mere boys each by himself out on the windy rocks?  Or will the organized West once again crash against that young man's dagger of light.  Who knows.  I'm a romantic and my ideas are mine and they inevitably come undone, just as the drawstring of the body comes loose and the spirit flies off alone.  I am not a team player.

 

But I am a good dancer.  Very good.

 

 

 

4402  That which never repeats never belongs to science.  From ancient ritual, the priest repeating repeating repeating the well-worn liturgy, the idea again comes.  That which never repeats never belongs to truth.  To the appearing.  To the power.  In poetry, in love's constant need for re-affirmation, in a child's wanting to hear the story one more time.  Repetition is what we are.  It is science.  It is the Law that controls.  It is life.

 

Repetition requires a fading away, otherwise there is no return.  I write down the idea.  It vanishes.  Another idea.  The same, different, who knows?  The same.  The thing is here again.  It vanishes.  Nothing is more ephemeral than writing.  Difference looms.  I write in order to feel the vanishing and then the repetition.  Across the savanna, in the wind.  Without the vanishing there is no repetition.  That is the eternal form.  The eternal return.  He is here again.  He comes again.  He vanishes.  That is the science of love.  I write in order to know the oblivion.  In order to get beyond time's enduring, into the timeless.  The one thing, the Blank.

 

 

 

4403  Radical atheism is a world without repetition.  It is a world without eternal forms.  It is a world of individuals that at here, then gone.  The writing of radical atheism is a writing without rhythm.  It is writing that does not know how to dance.  It is an attempt to fix the world in inert sentences before it must of necessity vanish forever. 

 

 

 

4404  Deconstruction is an attempt to finally dislodge the Eternal Forms from on high.  To eradicate the high places.  To give place, instead, to life and life's time.  It doesn't want immortality; it wants to have the adventure of surviving the dangerous rapids of life's adventure.  The stillness of the undying, the unchanging, is a horror to its questing sense of making it.  On living on after the venture, the real risk, that death's possibility gives.  It will skim around death for as long as it can.

 

There is no room in deconstruction for the truly erotic.  For the peak and the blank.  For pure oblivion.  For the return.  In deconstruction, once the end comes, that's it.  It is to be avoided at all costs, but played with.  The believer in the Eternal Forms, however, is not afraid.  Let the end come, make it come, the return will return, eternally.  The erotic is about the movement to the end, past the end, oblivion and then tomorrow we will do it again.  No more foreplay, now the orgasmic climax.  Now the end.  The end of time and life and the complete individual.  Then the Eternal returns.  And there you are again.  That is the erotic.

 

 

 

4405  When the erotic comes the one you wanted to make love to suddenly looks strange.  And that strangeness is the stuff of philosophy.  Not life.  Not joy.  Not an ordinary knowing.  It is that thing that is now other.  He looks at you, but there is no ordinary looking there.  He has become it.  What to think?  Thinking reels.  You can't think.  You move in closer.  You feel the touch of something else.  You are becoming that.  It is uncanny.  It is strange.  It is desire for that beyond life and death.  It is from the beyond.  It is somehow good, somehow evil.  It is the way across.  The shock.  Thinking tries to think.  It is in philosophy.  Or do you balk at the thought?

 

 

 

4406  In all of these writings I am doing analysis, simple ontological analysis, nothing more.  I am a traditionalist.  I do the dialectic of particular and universal, the one and the many, simple and complex.  I am concerned with existence and mind and time.  This is a metaphysics of presence, a theology, a night among the Forms.  My concern is not man.  I do not worry the worry of man.  I deal with transcendence settling in here and there among the world's things.  I make the attempt.  I fail.  And in that I spy the beloved thing up ahead.  Perhaps, perhaps.

 

The same and the different.  Broken days, smooth arms.  It is, it isn't.  Love disappears, Being appears.  Your ears, my dear, are perfectly shaped.  Man will not escape your beauty.  He swims in your beauty.  The allure, the allure. 

 

Come undone and it is all yours.  The drawstring of your being dangles and He is about to pull it.  I know I have mentioned it too many times, but again and again, you, my dear reader, are marvelously beautiful.  It's a pity, it's a pity what is about to happen to you.  There will be no let up.  Being is and non-being is not.

 

 

 

4407  B3t writes, "To be sure, we writers are still jealous husbands but style teaches us to dress up our wives in the most expensive clothing before they have sex with another man."  It is as striking as it is true.  It is the Question of Style.  Surely, that is a question equal to the one which so bothered Heidegger.  Maybe they are same question.  I will gently wait for B. to give more of his thinking.  I think he has adequate knowledge of this matter.  He is a writer.  Alone.  Chastened by the fear of betrayal.  Close to the chastening fear of God, in that he also must not betray that that he knows to be true and he must also not throw it about in low places, in the language of Academia.  He is dealing with Presence, the Openness(-opening) and the Hinge.  Die Starke ist am maechtigsten allein.

 

 

 

4408  I have written a lot and I have put it all up on the Internet clothesline to dry.  All the passersby can see it.  I wonder just what it is they do imagine as they see it.  In Kathmandu, the hotels, after they wash the linen, put it out on the grass to soak up the sun.  I'm sure the uv rays kill all the germs nicely.  And you are free to wonder what went on on those sheets.  Imagine as you will, as much as you will.  As so it is with my words in the sun of the reader's seeing.  You will do as you will.  Should I be anxious about that?

 

Personally, I have no doubt but that your interpretation of these writings will be different from mine.  And I probably would object if I could read your mind.  Fortunately, I can't.  Nor can you read mine.  So what is the point of writing in the first place?

 

Reading/writing is almost a solitary affair.  It is almost true that we write only for our own reading.  And we read that we might own the writing.  Owning it all is the matter.  We almost do.  But we don't.  The "almost" reveals another presence.  When we write, it is not we who write.  When we read, it is not we.  What to say?  I think, in this matter, you almost see what I do.

 

In the act of reading and writing there is some other thing or being there.  Look over your words, if they are fluent (which they often aren't and they are bad), then you will, I'm very sure, be totally surprised that those words came from you.  How could you possibly come up with that?  They surely came from that other thing or being.  And you feel obliged to give credit where credit is due.  You hesitate to own the words and the ideas suddenly in your mind.  It would be hubris to claim all that.  Anyway, you are somewhat embarrassed by the audacity that that thing or being had in them.  It is unsettling.  And right now being unsettled by something that is not you or yours is not easy. 

 

In writing and in reading, you are taken and formed into a form about which you have not been consulted.  It was too fast.  It was too hard.  It may have been only the petit pleasure of a minor sprite, and nothing at all.  But now you are that.  You have lost the sheerness of possibly being many other things. 

 

When you put "your" writings out for public view, what you are really doing is showing the world that you have become the beloved of that thing or being and you obey.  Ownership is obedience to that.  You are bent over in a humble position.  You had no choice in the matter and so you will write and read again and again and finally you will find a way out and past your self.  Past the others.  To that thing, that being, the Self beyond.  And I too.

 

 

 

4409  A person owns his ideas.  They are his property.  This type of ownership and this type of property are exactly the same as the having and the property we consider when we think of an inanimate object such as the cloth and the property it has, that it is sheer.  And here we are at the considering that goes right to the heart of philosophy.  We will be at the center of ontology.  This is what the great argument is all about. 

 

I have, in these writings, been laying out the philosophy that holds that the particular and the property that it has are separate and two.  And that the nexus of having is itself a third thing.  The particular is bare and the property is a universal.  The having is what makes them together be one.  That ontological structure is maintained by few ontologists.  I operate alone.

 

Consider the idea that the cloth is sheer.  I have had that idea before as might you have and surely others too.  The idea is one thing, it is a universal that many individuals have.  That idea is the property that I have.  I think the idea.  I have the idea.  I am not the idea.  It is a universal that many individuals, particulars, have.  I did not create it or in any way bring it into being.  It would be more proper to say it came to me.  I am tied to it, but I am not it.  My ideas are with me.  They are mine through the nexus of having, a most intimate nexus.  Still, my ideas, from the simplest to the most complex, are not identical with me.  They come to me.  And they are with other minds.  The universal gets around.

 

There is, of course, great resistance to such a philosophy.  It is the fashion today to elevate the individual over the universal.  To devalue the universal into non-existence.  To have nothing bare.  To get rid of the need for any nexus.  To have the person be supreme in his ability to think up the whole world.  And to trash it if he chooses.  And the poor student has no idea what I am talking about.  Such is the poverty of philosophy today.

 

 

 

4410  In the spirit of Derrida, let me speak about my own writing.  Binary opposites, centering and de-centering, the lure and the cure.  It is certainly true that one could find many ways in which I am the Other.  The boys, the unacademic style, the unconcern, the pictures.  God is here but he is that.  The night beauty. Yet, for all that I am so very traditional.  I privilege the male, the stylized, the logical, so pure, the visually clean.  I adore the young, the beautiful, the carefree.  I am with that thing that has always been at the center of high art, high scholarship, the refined, unknowing elite.  I am part of the pampered and cultured.  I am divinely lumpen. 

 

The play of opposites, perhaps the androgyny of it all, permeates my writing.  I feel it here as I softly speak to you in words.  And, of course, the forms of the words, the lilt, the smooth sentences, the rise and the fall of the breath in them, all of that is maybe more important than the meaning.  Anyway my reader is shuffled back and forth between form and meaning uncontrollably and he loses both.  At the end the play vanishes and there is only oblivion of orgasmic dissemination.

 

 

 

4411  There are a lot of "radical" scholars today who are trying to defend Derrida and Deconstruction against the charge of latent Theistic.  They point out the total temporality of its vision, with its play of presence and absence, as essentially without, in its most radical form, any hint of the stillness of Eternity.  The Play of Deconstruction is, au contraire, the essence of theism.  Eternity and time are at each other.  That is the madness of the incarnation.  That is the impish Boy.  I have written it up.  And up it stands for your reading pleasure. 

 

This is exactly the uncreature that Nietzsche went to the Isles of the Blest in Taormina to find.  But it was too much for him.

 

 

 

4412  A sacred place, a templum, is a place cut off from the rest, τεμενος, a place where sacred things happen, ό σφιγκτήρ, a place of random violence. In the ordinary world, things follow each other in ordered succession. There, there is a reason and a cause. It is the task of science to find it. In that religious place, things happen. No reason, no order, no understanding follows. It is a place cut off so that such terror might be kept away from the people. Without that place, that terror seeps in through all the cracks of the everyday, and we become violent ourselves.

In the old days, just yesterday, those who wrote fiction were called upon to justify their art. What they wrote wasn't true, that is to say, it depicted happenings that did not follow the ordered course of time. They appeared out of the writer's imagination suddenly. The line of being was broken. It was a lie. The mark of a lie is that no ordering can be found for it among the other things of the world. It is a random appearance. It is disorder simpliciter. That sudden break, that cut into the real, that lying violent act must be hauled up before the judgment of the true and the good. Such is random violence. Such is the untruth that pervades our world now. Could it be that we once again need a place cut off where the strangler can do the act? Where the silence of the break can be heard more serenely.

Today the violence of the gods is in literature. And the media, except that the evening news has become more like fiction to us. We rapidly shift from one image to another, no order, no true line. We are choking and gasping for air. The throttler is here. And the knife.

 

 

4413  It is useless for philosophy to try to about think time.  There can be no ontology of time.  Any analysis will always and inevitably fight contradiction, if it is true analysis.  And it will lose.  Likewise, all speaking about eternity will be strange and full of daemonic heat.  Nonetheless, the philosopher will forge ahead and wait for the blinding end to his analysis.  This is the necessity of final thought.  And so I write of luminous forms and I stare at the bare just that.  A shiver works its way up my back.    I simply endure philosophy, my impossible lover.

 

 

 

4414  It's impossible for me to write about the pain and misery of life without turning it into a theatrical scene.  The words and the feelings become an aesthetic swoon.  Even when I think about my own poverty in body and substance, I romanticize it.  And when I read what others have written, it is a great pleasure to walk quietly through the ruins of life.  What am I to do?  We are art and we are artfully distant from all we are.  Pain and misery are so sublime even when we a living in the midst of their loud existence.  I am sure that even the poor, the very poor and destitute, look at themselves and their friends and see the great Beauty that walks ever close to them.  What is is.

 

This is the problem.  We are distant from not only the others but from ourselves, in both our poverty and our plenty.  We are a third thing, neither and only a slip sliding alongside of.  That is the Eros of the dialectical Diotima.  We are on the escape route away from confusion.  Our being is real and definite but it is not what you think it is. 

 

If you have to choose between confusion and the absurdity of pain, surely you will choose the latter.  Pain and poverty are intellectually clean.  They are.  Eros is more troublesome.  Is he confusion or clear-sightedness?  Nothing is ever for sure about him.  Perhaps you would choose pain and poverty over his bewilderingly strange quasi-existence.  Perhaps not.  Pain and poverty, though real, do not entice.  Still, Eros is worse - or not.  Philosophy and its dialectical thinking is much worse.  I am a philosopher and I turn the world's existents into bewilderment.  I am Eros.  I am the very human.  Clear-eyed and confused at once.  I live in poverty and sorcery.  Slight, pale, sick boys are so sexy.  We all know that.

 

 

 

4415  Heidegger tried to get us to think about Being, but he himself was not very good at it.  The only thing he could see was Dasein and its infinitely varied modes.  That is to say that for him Being was always an individual thing existing thisly or thusly.  What we usually think of as a property and thus an adjective, a universal tied to a particular with the copula "is" - He is slender - was for him a way of existing for the individual and thus an adverb, not a thing and thus not in need of a connector.  It is a typical nominalistic maneuver.  It is the doing of one trying to heal the cut, the wound, within being.  It is the evasion of one trying to not fall into the infinite Between.  He wanted all differences within the purity of the individual to slip away into the shadows.  He saw traces, ghosts, error and inauthenticity, but no really existing thing that gave us pause between things.  He saw no Between.  And in the end he saw only the Between.  He became de-centered in Being's withdrawal.  And then he died.

 

 

 

4416  The Ontological Argument is an attempt to prove the absolute necessity of the existence of God.  Anselm, who invented it, Leibniz, Des Cartes, and Spinoza (no mean thinkers) all believed in it.  It is eminently out of fashion today, along with God Himself.  So let's for the moment not consider the rightness or the wrongness of it, but the "feel" of it.  What is it about such a thing that MUST exist that throws us back against the philosophical wall?  What is there about it that is a fascinans, a beauty for those attuned to absolute things and what must be, a veritable Majesty of a God.  Does is pull you lovingly closer, or does is infuriate you with its unreasonable intellectual demands?  Is it a love-crusher?  A mind-warper?  Or just a historical curiosity in old books?  It seems to me that if you let yourself really sink into it, really look as straight on to it as your crooked vision will allow, really invite "It" to take your thinking, that you will feel a daemonic rush.  And That is the place of the genius that took those old philosophers.  It is the Genius of Philosophy that riles, that magically reels in the streets outside your window at night.  It is Him.  And He may come into your room.  Put your head under your intellectual pillow.  And vow not to do that again.  Unless, my dear, you are one of us.

 

 

 

4417  Consider this statement:  The stars are super-brilliant tonight, therefore it is probably going to be cold.  It has the word "therefore" in it.  Two facts are connected by that connector-word.  What is it?  Is there something that that word names?  Let's say, Yes.  Is that thing something of the mind?  Let's say, No.  It simply is.  The two phrases that state facts or refer to those facts are not themselves the facts referred to.  Statements are about something other that themselves.  The words in the statements, likewise, refer to something other than themselves.  Therefore, aside from the statement we have the various things it refers to: facts and other things that include the referent of the word "therefore".  And that is the end of the story; none of that comes from mind or language or social conditioning or gigantic karmanic networks of any kind.  They just are.  And they are not "in" anything.  Not in matter, mind, language, time, space, Knowledge (with a capital K), or God.  They just are.  Bye.

 

 

 

4418  If I assert that the nexus named by the word "therefore" exists, I can almost hear the distant mumbling, "No, it doesn't",  and I wonder what the problem is with my assertion.  Have I missed seeing something that they, my silent interlocutors, have seen?   No, I haven't; it's merely a personality clash.  I am believing to the point of having to live in veritable jungle of Wild Beasts of Being.  The others are obsessed with unbelieving.  They are skeptical by Nature's design.  It would be pointless to argue, except that argument helps pass the time.  The thing that the word "therefore" refers to exists.  I believe; I see it.  The others roll their eyes and move on.  It's a hopeless encounter. 

 

The differences between thinking minds is vast, too wide to cross.  The distance may in fact be almost ontologically categorical, the most momentous of all.  We are different and there is no bridging the difference.

 

"The differences among some of the several existents are very great indeed.  I, for one, would not hesitate to call them momentous, or enormous.  That, I submit is a major source of the resistance serious ontology has always met.  For these differences are much greater than most are prepared to face."  Gustav Bergmann.

 

 

 

4419  Here is my political theory. What people really want is a comfortable place to sit with a shelf full of food, a flower blossoming by the way and enough slow time to discuss the radical ideas they have that will make the world a better place. We are a people of comfort, beauty and reflection. That is enough. That is all we want.

That place to sit may in the future become a warm, dry cave. Or a stick hut. Or a beach with a cooler. We really do not require much. And we need only a couple of other reflecting minds to move along with us. Maybe agreeing or disagreeing – it doesn't matter. As long as we have all of that we are and we will be happy. Give the people that and life is beautiful. Just that. We want a pleasant place to sit and reflect. Action is passé.

 

 

 

4420  A young friend of mine writes poetry.  It seems to me that he is very close to Emily Dickinson.  If he is, then how should we characterize that closeness?  There is a nominalistic interpretation and a realistic or Platonic.  The first one has great respect for the individuals involved and places them at the origin of the writings.  The second has more regard for the form of the writings and the individuals themselves are hardly involved at all, except as bearers of the form.

 

So, my friend writes in the form of Emily Dickinson.  He is, according to my Platonic interpretation, possessed by the Form.  It is the Form which comes and, though he writes, we could also say that it is the Form that writes.  And, of course, it is the same Form, the one Form, that wrote for Emily Dickinson.  Both were possessed by That. 

 

The nominalistic interpretation, so preferred today, says that these two individuals, each being eminently himself and herself, have a similar deep structure that produced or led out or created similar works of art.  The key word here is obviously "similar".  That is the mark of nominalism.  That word is much weaker than "same", as in the Platonic belief that they were possessed by the same form.  Nominalism preserves the power and the force of the individual over and against a separate thing as a Form.   It wants to say that from out of the depth of "personal experience" there arose the works of art.  It all comes back to the individual and his or her history.  There are no occult beings taking possession momentarily and acting in total disregard for the integrity of the person, the individual.  Unlike Platonism, it has respect for the dignity and even the sanctity of the person.

 

Platonism, however, preserves the strangeness, the uncanny otherness, of what has happened.  Even the madness.  Disruption has come.  The cut.  The shiver of the erotic.  That awfulness that is in the word "possessed".  It seems to me that in the poetry of both my friend and Emily Dickinson, there is that punishing, severe thing.  Neither of those individuals wrote what was written.

 

 

 

4421  He was a young grad student and he felt an itch.  Such a thing is not unpleasant.  He dug into it.  And if another felt the same he would help out.  It was a subdued joy.  Back and forth, back and forth across the plain of thought thinking.  Always on the lookout for another.  The itch of thought riding on itself.  Almost there.  Look!  Again it is there.  Quiet.  Another time.  The itch begins.  Thought thinking thought.  The body moves.  This then that.  Wait.  Again.  One thought follows another.  The slow time builds.  Ideas come.  Thought materializes.  Step, step, step away.  And wait.  The gentle sun, the soft breeze.  Sleep.  Dreams.  The world deconstructs.  The line is drawn.  The line draws itself up.  Thought dances in dreams with itself.  The tickling, the itch.

 

 

 

 4422

57 Now it happened as they journeyed on the road, that someone said to Him, “Lord, I will follow You wherever You go.” 
58 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.” 
59 Then He said to another, “Follow Me.” 
But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 
60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.” 
61 And another also said, “Lord, I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.” 
62 But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”

 

Why is it that the young students of philosophy today are still obsessing about Heidegger and Deleuze and Derrida and Lacan?  And, for God's sake, even Kant and Hegel?  And Marx and Nietzsche?  Surely now it's time to let the dead bury the dead.  It's time to move on and not look back.  Instead "This conversation, which we are now conducting amid internals of silence, will never cease.  The speaking presence of the dead man in our midst, whom we are burying with honor, clearly means that we shall still be obliged indefinitely to comment on and listen to every nuance of our moods.  And the eternal chatter of the details dismays me.  … Noting is innocent – I'm well aware of that.  And least innocent of all is our sensitivity to and pleasure in nuance, which have always moved us and within which we have moved. … And now, I daresay, the lightning bolt and the whispering will remain inseparable for a long time. … nothing clear-cut is in store for us."  Saint Beuve.

 

 

 

 

4423  The Form is not the object that has the Form.  If you look around you will see objects and places and times.  And all those things have form.  There are relations.  Structures.  A swelter of properties.  Separate those things from the objects that lie about and tie them down.  Let them fly free.  Feel the severing.  Feel the unboundedness come.  Feel the loosening up loosen.  The Form flies free.  The moving spirit dances in the light.  There are no objects with their impure half-presence.  The pure translucence of objectless form takes you into itself.  You are gone.  You are with yourself.  The act of the preposition has you.  You are that.

 

 

 

4424  What is the ground of violence in the midst of human life?  What is violence?  How can we avoid it?  Violence is a thing.  It exists.  It comes into human life the way any other Eternal Form comes.  It appears the way any other Form appears.  And we can no more avoid it than we can we can avoid any of the other Forms of Being.  It is.  Its appearing is the appearing of Being itself.  It is eternally present.  And was and will be and will eternally return.  Such is Being.  Such is life.

 

Sometimes we pray to find a way past violence; sometimes we welcome it as our defender.  Violence is Majestic and it is of God, of Being, of Life.  Its banality, its beauty, its ugliness are great.  It is eternal.

 

 

 

4425  The appearing of an Eternal Form is the appearing of that Eternal Form.  The thing itself is present and we know the thing itself.  We are not in the presence of a mere deputy or trace or ghostly absence.  The thing itself is there and we are directly aware of it.  It couldn't be simpler, but that simplicity is too much for most and they beg for the darkness of non-being.  When we know that Thing, that Eternal Thing, we know Eternity.  Existence is directly known and seen with the eyes.  Otherness and Difference are Eternal Things and are present in person.  The Universals of Being are here.  And again.  And again.  The Eternal Return of the Same is.  That is the philosophical vision that the lover loves.  The lover, above all, wants the real; a mere messenger, a representative, will not do.  The lover wants the thing itself.  He will settle for nothing less.  Absence agitates.  The god himself must appear or all is lost.  The beloved thing does not withdraw his power.  That is the ancient philosophy.

 

 

 

4426  I so casually mention the Eternal Forms.  And then there are those two Majuscule Letters, so questionable.  I give you Violence, Darkness, Love.  I speak of great things but in such an empty offhand manner.  I give you almost nothing.  A breath of air.  A few skewed black lines.  The minimal amount.  A figure of speech, a figure of thought, metonymy.  The Thing Itself.

 

We know the great through knowing the least.  The irony of inner speech.  The inadequacy of extended thought.  The incongruence of Being with itself.  The Great God in these writings is a mere boy on his bed deep in himself.  You were that.

 

These writings glide by in a breeze and nothing much is said.  All of philosophy is said.  A slight shift in the ether of love.  The Eternal Forms.

 

 

 

4427  Let's say you are an object-oriented philosopher and you are trying your poetic best to describe just what an object is.  And you lead the reader into the interior of one of those world-creating things.  Like Dante, you find yourself in a hell, a purgatory, a paradise of swirling phantoms.  Or something like that.  I am not the poet you want.  It's a wild place.  Levels and levels of carnality and sensuality and this joining up with that, a mysterium tremendum, a mysterium fascinans.  It could be fun.  It could be horrible.  It is both.  But is it philosophy?  No.  We are here in the approaching post-scientific way of thinking.  It is not philosophy.  But it is a trip.

 

There, surprisingly, are no objects (t)here.  The objects have all withdrawn.  We have only poetic elements.  The jewelry around the necks (us) of the gods of reality.  It's a Rave.  And when you are as tired as Juliette of the Spirits you can leave, simply go outside and look up into the still night of Eternity.  The  Wind, the Forms, and the Slender Waist await your timeless dance.

 

 

 

4428  For the last three or four centuries philosophy has suffered under the disheartening burden of representationalism. That is to say, that the predominant philosophy has maintained that the mind doesn't see the thing itself "out there" but an image of it in the mind. Presumably, that out-there thing "caused" or was the occasion for the image, but it and the image are two not one. Even object-oriented philosophies thinks that. The thing itself is inaccessible. And thus we worry about whether or not we have got the image right. The search for certainty grips us.

 

Part of the problem is the pattern of thought that says that the mind can only know what is in the mind. All thought is mediated by the senses. Nihil est in intellectu quod non erat in sensu nisi ipse intellectus. And if there is an ordering to the things we see, it is the mind and the mind's inherent structures that have made it so. And thus if I assert that such and such is the case, I hear the young, especially the young, constantly reminding me that that is only my "personal" opinion, my view, only my concept. The young are especially keen on the little prison they are trapped in, with only a few peep holes out. The room of their imagination. The sensorium.

 

So which is it? Concerning the things of Being and the world, do I see them directly or am I only looking at a "personal" representation of them in my mind. Am I looking at a concept my mind produced, albeit prompted by the out-there thing?

 

Such concepts, such representations, such images removed from the original, don't exist. I am looking directly at the thing itself, not an image of it. I am not in here. I am out there with the things of Being. I see them directly. That is direct realism. Some call it naive, so be it.

 

 

 

4429  Anti-corruption laws in the third world and tough regulations in the US to "reign in" wall street excesses will both fail because we are all half in love with the outlaw and the dark treasure he cunningly gains.  It is a part of our intellectual heritage to value this singular individual higher than the law.  He and his friends in high places make the law and they can break it.  They are free to live both inside it and outside it.  Nothing is higher than these unique individuals.  Each is beyond form.  And each is, in the last analysis, without country or God.  He is a piece unto himself.  His cunning is admirable.  He is relaxed.  We all think that we too belong to that band of free souls.  The law is our plaything.

 

 

 

4430  All truly philosophical writings attempt to answer a few traditional questions. What individuates and accounts for difference? What accounts for sameness? What gives unity to the things of the world? What are relations? What accounts for there being sets and ordering? What accounts for number and logical form? What is a thought and its connection to the things of the world? Certain patterns must be attended to and accounted for: part-whole, simple-complex, actual-potential. And it must be clear that we have consciously considered just what the philosophical act of accounting for is and why it is that we must account for these things. That is traditional philosophy and philosophy remains as it has always been. Or we have completely forgotten what Being is.

 

These are difficult questions. They are maybe too difficult for the human mind, but we have pondered them for millennia and no one is about to give up.

 

Just as bookkeepers merely assume numbers and don't question their ontological being, so most philosophers today merely assume that we all understand these ontological things and move on to a general outline of some sort of new psychology, seeking the forms of human and chthonic encounters. They build magical worlds out of thin abstractions. Gossamer webs in the night of the mind. The old questions were simply too difficult – and boring.

 

 

 

4431  What is the difference between a dream and reality?  Let's say you have spent the evening trying to think through a difficult philosophical problem.  Understanding and clear formulation did not come.  You slowly moved over and over the problem but nothing appeared.  You found no words to write.  The idea did not gather.  So you lay down to nap.

 

The sleep was troubled.  You could hardly sleep at all.  You were somewhere between, hovering.  It was not pleasant.  Twisted forms pained your mind.  And then closer to sleep one form, one strangely familiar form from the everyday, a bolt threading, a band encircling, a gold sheen, some simple form, so present, contained the answer to the problem or some problem, but it was a wrenching hurt.  And you tried to maintain it.  It slipped away.  Then you were glad to wake up, but slightly upset that it was gone.  Maybe it wasn't.  Later in the morning words come and you write.    Your understanding is evident, but maybe not.  Another time.

 

Reality sends us into dreams and then back out.  They are connected, but they are very different.  They are not the same, though their sameness is close. 

 

To give an interpretation in terms of neural wiring is useless; it's just another dream.  And Freud merely restates what we already know.  His dream analysis is another twisted dream.  Where is awakened knowing?  Can we dream the dream of life back into reality?

 

 

 

4432  Acts 17:28  For in him we live and move and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said.

 

Hegel:  Das Sein des Geistes ist die Zeit.  The being of the mind is time.

 

Time is the substance of the world.

 

Throughout the history of philosophy God has been equated with many things: Being, Number, Time, Love, Difference, Mind, The Good etc. etc..

 

These are the different theologies of man.  Today, among the most common of the outspoken, "non-believing" theologians, we hear of Time as the substance of substance and ground of our individual being.  Though we never hear them say that God is Time, we almost hear them say that Time is God.  We do hear them say that Time is Dasein, or the ground of individual existence.  We are here so close to ordinary theology that it would take the most subtle of spirits to tell the difference.  It is finer than the ghostly trace of a lost absence breathing within paradox oozing on the skin of the sour grapes of incomplete thought.  It is finer than the absent-mindedness of a boy jacking off.

 

Sometimes, among the Husserlian philosophers we hear that Time is secreted by the transcendent Self.  Oh well!  Whatever. 

 

So we have a non-theological theology and the Non-theologians scream at me that I have totally misunderstood.  And somehow they think that that is important.

 

 

 

4433  America is defined by the religious.  And, as at the entrance to any religious ground, we display an apotropaic herm to ward off the unbelievers.  I am an American.  I am religious.  I display the ancient stone pillar in the wind.  Few come my way.

 

Žižek, a man beset by Harpies, complains that we here quickly tell the newcomer of our most personal sexual propensities.  He insists that we do it in order to push back the Other.  He is of course right.  We are in a religious place and the great traffic congestion into our temples here will always beset you with phallic questions.  This Orient of sexual orientation reaches into the heights and depths of the spirit, as Nietzsche says.  It is not as incidental as the liberals think.  Tread warily.

 

 

 

4434  This philosophy is not a walk down a wooded path, but a walk through the heart of Kathmandu.  I start off writing and you start off reading with the blithe intention of finding the words that express an idea.  A thoroughly civilized exercise.  We are a gentle pair.  So we begin looking up ahead where we might be soon.  Step step step.  We see interesting things along the way.  Beauties glide by.  Massive structures loom.  Interesting things suggest themselves.  Then it rather quickly turns.  The going is a little rougher.  The access a little more restricted.  The blockage begins to cram into place.  And we must pay more attention to the at hand.  We are caught.  Pace pace pace we will make our way through the increasing congestion.  The obstacles set themselves in place.  The goal and the reason for going are forgotten, we just simply have to make our way over and through the tangled complexity.  Pay attention to the immediate!  Soon it will be over.  Keep going.  Keep going.

 

To read and to write is not a gentleman's pleasure.  It is the work of who simply has to get past the present difficulty.  The impasse must be dealt with.  The hard push of the traffic must be maneuvered.  The time is now and all thought of goal or pleasant things along the way are momentarily forgotten.  Work and more work.  Until the end.  Then it stops.  And you made it to the heart of the Kathmandu of thought.  You can now look about.  If may not be more than a moment until it starts up again, but there is a strange pleasure in the fatigue.  Thought came.

 

 

 

4435  I am writing epistemological, not just ontological realism.  We see the thing itself.  The thing itself is naked before the mind's eye.  Under the mind's touch.  Within the mind's embrace.  We have it all.  Right there.  To know is to know completely.  The thing is had.

 

This is a difficult point in philosophy, so let me explain further this ontological, epistemological vision, the delight of the one who loves these glistening endeavors.  I am not talking about having something before my mind that is similar, even very similar, to what is in the unattainable beyond.  It is not a matter of similarity at all, it is the very thing itself.  There is no division within Being between the intentional object and the real object.  They, or rather it, is just that.

 

This is just the argument the not-so-ancients had about homoousia and homoiousia in the being of Christ.  Was he similar to God or was he the very God himself?  That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, we have looked upon, and our hands have handled …  I John 1:1.  The one we want is himself under our very caress.

 

I was in Istanbul a few years ago at a Sufi Teke.  In ecstasy, the whirling dervish finally sees God.  I asked the Imam teaching us whether that one saw God or just an image of God and he was adamant that it was God Himself and not anything less.  That is epistemological realism hard and fast.

 

And a lover will understand when I say that we are here at the completion of our journey to the Unforgettable.  Only the Moment itself.  Only the one instant before, right at, the last push into the All-of-it is satisfyingly satisfying.  And there you go, my dear.  See you tomorrow. 

 

And that is why epistemological realism is simply too much for the classroom.

 

 

 

4436  Deconstruction is reaching the end game.  It is making the final push to prove that it is not negative theology.  It will probably finally evaporate into nothing.  The best, most poignant, sentence or verdict on the matter was written my Sartre.

 

It is as if the world, man, and man-in-the-world express an abortive attempt to become God. It is as if the in-itself and the for-itself reveal themselves in a state of disintegration with respect to an ideal synthesis. Not that the integration has ever taken place, but precisely on the contrary because it is permanently suggested and permanently impossible. … the idea of God is contradictory and we lose ourselves in vain: man is a useless passion.

 

Man thinks of nothing but God.  The idea is for him, finally, a pure contradiction.  It is a mad affair.  What are we to do?  It is the same with Love and Being and all the other great metaphysical names for God, including today's darling - the Object.  And also Evil.  So, are Derrida and the other deconstructionists not theologians?  Was Othello, finally, not a lover?  Were the Nazis not really banal?  Is Nihilism an empty idea?  Is a kiss not just a kiss?  Is there not real beauty in those eyes?  Whatever the final answer, I agree that we cannot give up the ever binding law of non-contradiction.  So here is Kierkegaard, the spiritual father of all the continental philosophers, "A thinker without paradox is like a lover without passion."  His paternity is constantly being denied by them.  They do not want to be theologians.  But a non-paradoxical non-God is nothing worthwhile.  As for uselessness, if we take the use out a thing and stare at it, so still, then frightening Enchantment sings to us.  And we go toward it.

 

 

 

4437  "Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen.  What we cannot speak about we must pass over in silence."  That is the last sentence in the Tractatus of Wittgenstein.  The sentences are spoken easily and they are easily understood.  What we cannot say is something like this: every one of those words in that one proposition – here expressed in two different ways – names an existing thing as does the proposition, namely, the fact itself.  Thus there is an existing thing named by "not", "in", "pass" and "over" and there is an existing thing that the being- together of the words names.  Many, if not almost all, would agree with the Tractatus in saying that we have here gone too far.  We can speak the sentence and understand it right well, but to speak out the elements of the sentence is to speak the unspeakable. About the senticity of the sentence we must remain silent.  The positivists in unison recite the phrase, "This is all metaphysical absurdity."  We are in another place that is unrecognizable by almost all.  We, the sensible, will leave the "realist" philosopher to wander alone.  In fact, this whole paragraph fails to say anything at all.  Didn't Wittgenstein himself reject the Tractatus?  Wasn't it long ago shown to be simply wrong?  I am, of course, not a positivist and I am a realist about these matters.  The simple words do name existing things.  As does the proposition as a thing itself.  The Tractatus reaches higher than any other philosophical book of the twentieth century.  It ended up speaking what it thought was unspeakable to us in spite of itself.  But

 

That's enough.  To pull more ontological threads out of these sentences would be to invite the cat in among the pigeons.

 

 

 

4438  Let's say you and I go out and we each have a Coke.  So here we are two bottles of dark sweetness in front of us and we decide to do an ontological analysis of just that. (These affairs really do happen.)  We see two ordinary objects in all kinds of relations with each other and with the rest of the world.  And we say that (a, b, c, F, G, H, e, w, u) are the ontological things that we need to "account for" all the phenomena we see about the two Cokes.  Something to individuate, something to account for the sensed properties, something to account for the sameness of the two, something to draw all that into a unified bottle, and something to account for the space-time structures they are in, and so on.  It's a rather heady bunch of things.  Let's assume it does the trick.  Now the question I want to consider is, What is the "relation" between those ontological, grounding things and the original objects, the bottles of Coke?  Which is ontologically prior – the ontological things or the two objects?  Are objects derived from ontologically more elemental things?  Are the ontological things derived from the ontologically prior objects?  Which is first, the world of objects about us from which we began or those other things from which the world "was made"?  It seems to me that the ontological ground of the object is prior.  Those things "account for" there being an object.  Without those first things there would be no bottle of Coke.  Objects belong to the everyday and the everyday rests on something else. 

 

 

 

4439  There has been a lot of talk about how it was Des Cartes who, supposedly, put the great divide between mind and body. It was, supposedly again, he who made the mind a sterile place and the body the place where all the hot action hung out. Mathematics vs. carnal wallowing. It was intolerable to the poetic mind and so the poets took over philosophy, an insurrection! He did no such thing, of course. IT WAS THE EGYTPIANS!

 

No it wasn't. I'm sorry. It was my friend Greg. He is so upset with my blog and its smutty pictures that he absolutely refuses to look at it or discuss it. He thinks sex in the act should remain in the bedroom (he wants to get married). Proper academic writing is blank. I try to explain to him that we are in the age of the carnal phenomenologists and that we should practice what we preach.Sensa, Honey. Sensa rolling off the tip of the tongue – so to speak.Sense coming out of the tip of your pencil – so to geek. Sensa cheek to cheek in the entangled tango of putting those words down. He rolls his eyes, turns and looks far away. Sensual writing is definitely not acceptable. And it is he who has been so vociferous, carnivorous, gymnospermish on that matter. And so he insists. I persist. He resists. I will not desist. And now magically the cyst of our love breaks all over my hand, his hand, this page. Just like the Egyptians.

 

 

 

4440  The Buddhist philosophers are fond of saying that the pillar exists and the pot exists, but the (pillar and the pot) doesn't exist.  In other words, we can say that for them either sets don't exist or that no third object arises from the union of the other two.  Let's go with sets.

 

Do sets as basic ontological things exist or are they really just a something that is derived from things ontologically more fundamental?  I'm going to skip the idea that they are mind-creations because that is just an idea from out of the mythology of mind as a magic world-producing, Aladdin's lamp.  So let's assume that sets do exist and they are ontologically fundamental.  Then the question becomes, What is the connection between a set and its members?  Let's say it is "member of".  The pillar and the pot are both members of the set (pillar and pot). In an everyday way of speaking, that is true, but ontologically it is circular, because to name the set we have to say set of what.  We can't say that the pillar and the pot are members of the set.  It seems that the pillar and the pot are somehow "in" the set before it gets connected to its members.  The idea breaks.

 

So, aside from pillar and pot what is there in or about or of a set that is left when we take them out?  Nothing except setness.  But we cannot say that the pillar and the pot are members of setness.  We have gotten nowhere.

 

Let's say that it is a third object that is there.  Oh my, that third object is a structure and a structure is just a set of elements in an ordered relation.  We are back at sets.  Maybe.  If we say that a car is a simple object that is somehow connected to all the parts and pieces that go into making it then we might get somewhere.  But I doubt it.  To separate the car from the structure that it "is", is tricky.  We are back at sets.  Substance always was a tipsy idea and it fell hard.  Objects suffer its fate inevitably.  Philosophers didn't dump the idea of substance, merely because they forgot what they were doing.

 

And here I stop because I cannot really do the ontology of sets.  And I don't think anyone else writing philosophy now can either.  Gustav Bergmann tried mightily before he died and he did come up with a weird ontological contraption that is more than interesting … but he basically failed also.  And he knew it.  Still, his is the best ontology of sets around.  It is the only ontology of sets around.  The others simply assume we all understand.  And we do, as long as we make sure we don't think about it too hard.

 

Philosophy itself trembles, just as you may in the presence of That.

 

 

 

4441  Consider the ontological fact or circumstance that pink is different from white.  You have two colors, one relation or quasi-relation of difference and their uniting into a fact – and the fact itself.  So many ontological things to consider.  Do such ontological facts exist?  Are they different from the elements that are "in" the fact, from pink, white and difference?  And from the nexus that unites them?  Difference within difference.  Dalliance and a seemly deferring.  Are we here beyond the powers of thought and language?  And what about the existence that such an existing fact has or bandies about?  Ontology overloads.  And I upload myself into transcendence.  Yes, I and you can think all this … sort of… maybe.  This is the simple fun of ontology.  It's a ticklish affair from here on out.  Being comes undone.  God himself sits down.  You stare at each other.  The erotic moment is about to begin.  Only an ecstatic glossolalia will do now.  Go find someone who can interpret.  Someone not embarrassed by the kisses and sighs and sweet pain.  Someone himself undone.  Someone like YOU.

 

 

 

4442 Those of you out there who really do know carnality, who really do like to wallow in the flesh, know that I have no such thing in my writing. All of the angelic beings I post up for you are perfect. They are clothed in radiant form. I write that pure Form. Transcendent fineness of the overly refined mind. Smooth and intense. No naturalism, please. This is High Decadence. All my boys are in the eternity of tight beauty. I write of a presence that is nowhere in this dark, entropic world. Those of you who know real sex, worldly sex, find what I put up far too mannered, far too precious, far too sophisticated. I write the self-conscious intellectual spirit.

 

It is Sartre, one of my favorite philosophers, who, once again, really knows what the flesh is. These naked, refined boys I post reveal no flesh. They are caught up in form. Real flesh is other. Real flesh is that that sags. When real flesh appears we look away. When the skin loses its tight structure and goes slack, that is the fall of man. When the coloration is motley and rabid. When teeth crack and nails rise up. When hair, our glory, leaves us and eyes bulge. When … you get my point. You know it well. Flesh, real flesh, sags. And thus we could say that most philosophical writing today is very fleshy. Little form, sagging sentences, and though the writer has been completely taught he has nothing taut in his great display. It's a repulsive display. But who am I to talk. Guys need it bad.

 

It was the Thomists who condemned the Platonizing Augustinians for being far too spiritual, a spirituality that would lead them into the void. Into that reverse, mystical sensualism.  Ah, the dialectical turning.

 

 

 

 

4443  In Hindu philosophy there is the notion of avachedda, which literally means to cut around.  It is the idea of limitation.  A thing in contact with other things, its relating with the world at large, pares down the thing to existence within certain borders.  It is measured and fit in.  That measurement is its mode of being.  In fact, the word mode has a root meaning of measurement.  From the same root comes the Hindu word maya, with a popular meaning of love and illusion; so let's say it is magical measurement.  A mode of being is a measurement, a cutting around, a limitation, a paring, a fit.  It is also illusion and magic. 

 

The notion of modes of being or modes of existence is popular again in certain left-bank quarters.  It is a way of avoiding universals or Platonic Forms.  Consider a blue screwdriver.  We, of course, could say, following the predicate calculus that it is a particular (x) exemplifying the universals blue and screwdriver.  That, however, annoys certain people.  They would much rather say that here is an object circumscribed by a world that makes it exist as a blue thing and as a screwdriver.  In other words, both its color and its function are how the thing relates to the world; they are not themselves existing entities such as universals would be.  Thus there is the object and its interaction with the world which limits it all around.  No need for universals or Platonic Forms participated in.  A mode of being is sort of an illusion.  It is not real, it is not a thing, it is a way of being only.  Thus only objects and their unreal magical measurement.  The object exists bluely and screwdriverly and as mine.  It remains just itself.  Those are its maya appearances for me.   Krishna grins with love-play, horripilation.  Philosophy becomes a sorcerer's game of creation from nothing and then the return.

 

 

 

4444  For a long time I have called myself a realist when it comes to philosophy.  I have read realist philosophers, old and new, and I have loved the game of devising arguments for and against my position.  About a year ago I discovered the Speculative Realists, especially Graham Harman, and I was intrigued.  I have since then tried my best to understand their ideas.  They come out of continental philosophy, which I only somewhat know, and that made the going a little rough, but I have persisted.  I still haven't come to a good understanding of just what their idea is.  Guerrilla Metaphysics is a pleasure to read, but in the end confusing - at least to me.  Perhaps that is because I was always looking for answers to a specific set of questions and Harman simply didn't ask those questions. 

 

In his latest blog posting he writes: "The continental tendency, by contrast, is simply to assume that the realism/anti-realism dispute is a pointless pseudo-problem, such that even to raise it is treated as a sort of vulgar gaffe. Meanwhile, while pretending to be beyond this dispute altogether, they instantly adopt the anti-realist side of things while pretending to remain neutral."  The one question I am most interested in hearing an answer to is:  Do universals exist in his ontology or no?  Perhaps he assumes that the realism/nominalism dispute is a pointless pseudo-problem, such that even to raise it is treated as a sort of vulgar gaffe. Meanwhile, while pretending to be beyond this dispute altogether, he instantly adopts the nominalist side of things.  I really don't see how he could fit universals into his ontology. Nor could he fit sets of objects or notes or elements.  It seems to me that anything that would "go across" the boundaries of objects would be anathema, and any type of universal or set would have to do that.  Thus also no numbers, no logical forms, no facts such as thirty-seven is bigger than twenty-two, or New York is bigger than Iowa City or a tiger is a type of cat.  Universals are not located anywhere at all and since the inside of objects is all that is under consideration, universals of all kinds are nothing at all.  That is as far as I can figure it out for Speculative Realism.  Perhaps I have missed reading something.  

 

 

 

4445  Substance that we find in the world is composed of matter and form.  That is Aristotle.  When the form has been released from matter by means of abstraction, then we are in the pure realm of spirit, the Entelechy.  Thus we have matter mixed and matter unmixed.  The first is poetry, the mixing bowl; the second is pure theoria.  In the first we see the final things, the telos of perfection, as though through a glass darkly.  That is the way of poetic alluding.  Then there is the Allure.  The call from far off.  All is metaphor and idolatry.  It is the mixing bowl.  It is human life here and now.  Theoria, the pure vision, is other.

 

When we rise above the poetry of life into the thin realm of pure thought we leave the world, the human, the commotion that pleases.  Then we are in the almost nothing of angelic being.  Pure mathematics.  Thought thinking pure thought.  It is as a fine white fire to the mind.  A killing subtle fire to the earthly man.  It is without pleasure to the flesh.  It is still ecstasy to the spirit.  It is deadly.

 

Philosophy as pure mathematics, devoid of the making of poetry, is for an eternity without time.  Then there is no more alluding, no more metaphor, no more of the indirect and the absent.  Then we will see The Thing Itself directly.  It is like forgetting to the mortal mind. 

 

 

 

4446  The religious sets up the distinction between time and the timeless.  It is the nature of things in time to suffer the effects of increased entropy.  That is to say that in time things degenerate.  They fall from being well-formed into shabbiness.  Your nice new shoes soon look walked-in.  Your smooth, clean-shaven face looks stubbly and tired.  Your new car is full of dents and dirt.  You yourself see your belly begin to stick out and your silken skin roughens and sags.  Then your understanding of just how things work loses its certainty.  Things go from beautiful to worn-out so fast.  The arrow of time knows no let-up.  The center will not hold.  Things fall apart and die.  And you think of the marvelous stories you have read and how there nothing has changed.

 

We reach for the timeless.  We read.  In our mind's eye we see the Battle of Troy, the plight of Hamlet, the Napoleonic advance, the Russian revolution, the descent of Dante into Hell, the magical rise of science and the fall of Romanticism, we see the birth of quantum theory, the travels of Gulliver, the birth of the computer, the death of Lincoln, the antics of Chaplin, the sorrows of Werther, the suffering of the prairie pioneers and the lavishness of Hollywood.  All of it now hangs in timeless splendor.  There nothing changes and falls into tatters.  It has entered immortality.  But we remain here getting older and we watch our country become something unrecognizable.  The timeless sets up against the ravages of time and breaks the mind.

 

There are those among us today who hate all talk of religion.  It is usually they who have come to love literature and history and art and all things still and unchanging.  They have jumped from the eternity of religion into the eternity of … it is the same eternity.  The timeless is the timeless.  In the meantime, we fluctuate downwards.  Soon the immortality of what was will also be ours.  But now we are agitated like flames in the difference.  Time is not more real than the timeless.

 

 

 

4447  The act of time is degeneration.  Even when it seems a more orderly place is being set up, in fact, that energetic endeavor is tearing down many things for the sake of that one thing.  The world moves inexorably toward equilibrium and its bland uniformity.  Our celebrations of diversity come at a great cost.  One thing rises on the ruins of many.  Our festivals of springtime blossoming are a prelude to a long, slow succumbing.  The moment of beauty is short.  The wasting away is torturous.  Time is the rule of increasing disorder.  Order is purchased with your life.

 

In the biological world, the individual plant or animal serves only as a sink for the waste of entropy.  The magical chain of DNA that is at the center of so-called Life is intent on maintaining its integrity.  It takes great amounts of energy to devise the mechanisms that will accomplish that exceedingly difficult task.  It is done.  The individual is that machine of maintenance.  It is the depository of the entropy removed from the blessed Chain of Life.  Soon the machine is worn out and the chain divides itself into another individual what will serve it in its time and then also depart.  The DNA survives whole.  Work was done and it was able the pass on what corruption came to it to the vehicle that carried it.  Only the DNA is important in biology.  The individual animal or plant exists only to momentarily keep it safe from the ways of inanimate collapse.  Such are the laws of entropy and the science of information.  Life is finally a gloomy thing for a conscious mind so tied to that maintenance machine.  A slave to the need of DNA to pass on intact, as though it were a virgin princess.  Maybe it really is that.

 

 

 

4448  Nietzsche's vision of the Eternal Return has been the worry of many distraught philosophers.  (Yes, to call a philosopher distraught is a redundancy.)  None has successfully wrestled it to the ground of understanding.  I too have had a go at it.  It was probably nothing more than an ordinary mystical vision, such as we all have had.  Nonetheless, it is a part of literature and it is a useful hook to hang our own thoughts on.  I was about to say that it is a vision of victory over the ravages of time.  It is an answer to resentment.  To the feeling that time has come and taken away all possibility.  That our time has passed and we now are on the long decline.  It is an attempt to say that whatever has happened to me has, in reality, been my own doing.  I did it all to myself.  And I loudly affirm it all to be good.  I have willed my entire life.  I am master of my destiny.  I am master of myself.  I am my own.  Let it all happen again exactly as I willed it and have willed it so many countless times before.  Thus I lift myself out of the mouth of ruin.  I enter into the eternity of It is and it will be.  Time and its leveling are overcome.

 

 

 

4449  The arguments against substance or enduring objects are rather simple.  They involve, as most philosophical arguments do, the drawing out of a contradiction from the very idea of such a thing.  Substance as substance is self-contradictory.  And thus so is Object, its cognate.  That, of course, doesn't mean that substance or objects don't exist, only that they comprise an internal contradiction. 

 

The only way around this contradiction is to transfer it to something that lies ever deeper than substance/object.  That something is Time.  Time is the ground of substance.  Or Time is the true substance of the world.  Time is contradictory.  Well, we all sort of knew that.  We could feel it.  Time is, as Augustine says, only understandable as long as we don't think about it closely. 

 

If all that bothers you, then don't allow Time into your philosophy.  Be Parmenidean!  Be an anti-substantialist modern philosopher.  Live in a world without substance.  It's hard; but no harder than living in a world that is essentially contradictory.  Your choices are limited.

 

There is one other way out, though.  This is the way of so many today.  That is to simply ignore it and hope no one will notice.  Distract them with the firework poetics of metaphor.  With political vehemence.  With a barrage of accusations of not being rigorous enough.  Be hard enough not to look! 

 

 

 

4450  Asceticism has been the bane of scholarship for long centuries.  It today rules the universities.  A dualism has been set up.  Inside the academic circle a strict rule exists that denies any and all expression of sensual, sexual pleasure.  Only bare logic is permitted.  Outside the circle, sensual pandemonium whirls around and around in the young man's mind. 

 

The Church, threatened from the beginning by the homoerotic ways of the very Lord it worshiped, put an immediate clamp down on all sexual unions, except the one explicitly preached against by that same Lord.  And today the universities that guide us into the darkness of the Nihil still carry out the first directive of those spiritual rulers.  Asceticism is the only way now.  And pandemonium.  Is there not a third?

 

Please, don't give me any nonsense about mixing together a little bit of both, also known as Family Values.

 

 

 

4451  I have lived for five months a year for the last sixteen years in Kathmandu.  Nepal is said to be the poorest country in Asia.  I have not lived among the well-to-do.  I have lived with the boys who come from the villages to work and to go to school.  I have talked and hung out with the street boys, the homeless boys, all the boys with no money.  I have lain with the poor.  I know intimately their life and their loves.  I have spent a long time with them.  And now back here is America, where I am comfortable, I read stories and accounts of the wretched existence of the world's poor.  I read of the absolute horribleness of their lives.  I read of their pain and anguish.  And I recognize none of it.  The poverty I lived in had none of the feel of those most pathetic revelations to the rich of the world.  I think the stories are just a way for the rich to "feel", to be needed, to hold a "poor young thing", to mentally, emotionally, economically rape someone who won't care because they are so bad off.  The truth is that among all those I knew and still know, life is much better, much brighter, much more friendly than here in cold, dead America.  Now, by saying that, I will have to suffer the vitriol of the "truly concerned".  I will be accused of romanticizing the poor.  I will be said to be blind to the plight of the destitute because of my sexual desires, the gross indecency of the Western upper classes against the woefully disadvantaged.  That I am a colonial imperialist.  Nonsense, these "advantaged" westerners just love to wallow in pity and stories of deep longing right into their groin.  It's the same "feeling" they get when they are horrified at stories of a blond, young girl here who has been the victim of a "depraved pedophile's" touch.  Who was under his cowardly gaze.  The people here love gothic tales of horror.  But it is not reality.

 

 

 

4452  Laying down his ontology, a philosopher will often and usually draw a distinction between a something and its appearing form.  And thus he thinks of the same difference lying between his ontology and his expression of it.  Then he valorizes the former and dismisses the later as a mere servant of that great thing.  If the appearance is decent, if it reveals the near truth of the something, then it is called eidos.  If not, then eidolon, a simulacrum.  Today it is common to denigrate the written expression as always somehow a distorting trope.  The writing is overlooked as having any value in itself, as a something of philosophy.  At most it is judged as good if it respectfully manages to demurely withdraw from view.  And let the light that is the philosopher's mind shine forth.

 

And so I undertake a deconstruction of the entire affair.  This marginal existence of the expression will now be lifted up into plain view as the final appearing of Philosophy itself.  All the formerly great meanings that lay in the majestic beyond will be made into mere hooks for the voice proclaiming itself in the pressing out.  (Oh my, I hope I don't draw the same distinction between the voice and its sound out there.)

 

Undaunted, I invite you to look at this expressing of my idea and my voice right here.  Look at this servant.  I have bought him fine clothes to wear at this banquet.  He will dazzle.  He will dance.  He will be the guest of honor as he serves you flesh and blood in this χαρισμα.  Your hunger is all that is required of you.

 

Sorely, my fellow deconstructionists – and we are a formidable lot – have, for the most part, hired day hacks as servants or have not provided for their good attire, and we now must put up with that.  I suppose I generally get their point, but so what?  The meal leaves gas.

 

 

 

4453  There is one aspect of the health-care debate that I find disturbing.  That is the unspoken feeling that if we can just get this one part of our lives taken care of we will be more secure.  In fact, if we can properly regulate the financial system we have, if we can have better control of our borders, if we can stop all the green-house gasses from escaping into the atmosphere, then we will be well on our way to finding that security we lack so pitifully.  We are looking for security!  The material world, including our own fragile bodies, the family world, the academic world, and on and on are all so in need of attention.  We lack security in all of that and we want it bad.  If we can just get through this rough time we will be in a much better place.  If the idiots let us get there.  It's all about security. 

 

But it will never come.  The one thing that is for sure in this world is that whatever is the case now, it will all soon change.  Everything is quickly gone.  No health-care system is going to make our physical bodies able to withstand the virus of time.  It is all going to come falling down.  Such has been the long history of the world.  And so we look elsewhere for safety.  

 

Part of our problem is that we are half in love with the pathos and the poignancy of our hellish past.  We are mad.

 

 

 

4454  The boy dances, the moon shines, the dog howls.  The boy, the moon, the dog.  Three Aristotelian substances.  The Boy, the Dance; the Moon, the Shining, the Dog, the Howling.  Six Platonic Forms.  Where does the philosopher go to find Being?  This world that is with us, this irreplaceable and singular world, will soon be gone.  Or is substance eternal and only its appearing for the moment? Worlds without end.  Are the Forms, also so singular and irreplaceable, finally the only eternal things and are themselves the things that appear scattered throughout space and time, substance being so weak and momentary?  But surely space and time suffer the same fateful questions and we mark time with lame thought.  The Forms and substance and eternity and the momentary and then Time steps forward as thought's strangler.  I write lyrically trying to lull my mind into truth.

 

 

 

4455  He is sleeping. Aristotle insists that the primary existent there is the one pointed to by the word "He". The words "sleeping" and "is" do not point to anything truly an existent. They point toward nothing that is anything of itself. They hang on that one for what slim existence they can manage. Only the one thing truly exists. All else is properly deferential. The individual is It.

 

It isn't true that for Aristotle only the individual exists. But only the individual has full, real existence. The other things do exist, sort of, in a secondary, derived, thus inferior sort of way. Their existence is marginal.

 

Or is it so? Doesn't Aristotle finally, through abstraction and the elimination of potentiality into actuality, the elimination of matter, raise up the marginal things into Ideas gazed upon by the Demiurge? Don't "sleeping" and the demur "is" become great Forms? Don't they reveal themselves as Sleeping and Being? Then the mind arrives at the purely Intelligible beyond material substance and the order of things is reversed. He who is first now will later be last and who is last will be first.

 

This is the science of metaphysics. Science is the act of taking apart the apparent and the everyday and rearranging the parts into the strange beyond of a reversal of being. The sun doesn't come up in the East and revolve around us, but we turn and turn and the sun stands still.  He lies still within Being and breathes in the cool rotations of Sleep. Our thinking gaze makes a change of set.

 

 

 

4456  Philosophy in the modern world has drawn the sharp distinction between object and act.  His hair blowing in the wind and my thinking of that are two, not one.  But when it comes to sense the scene slightly changes.  To perceive is one thing, to sense is another.  I perceive his hair out there in wind, in the world, in among all the other delights.  But when the color and fragrance and the softness impress themselves on my mind and the movement moves me, then I am intimate with all that and it is no longer separate and out there.  It seems that the act and the object coalesce.  It seems that the distinction is lost, marvelously lost and I become one with that. 

 

The old Empiricists understood this.  And they fell into error.  The same falling exists today.  It is common now to read of the object- sensual image distinction.  The object vicariously represents itself inside another.  If that other is human then that image is a sensual presentation.  But now the confusion comes.  The person, that mind, is not different from the sensum.  He is the sensum.  We do not say that he senses the sensum.  There is no such distinction between act and the object.  The fall has occurred.

 

Let's suppose sense, sense data, do exist.  Shouldn't we ask the question of how we know them?  Is another image needed of them "in the mind" of the knower?  Are we about to fall farther into regress?  Do we know sensa directly, without intermediary?  Do we sense sense data?  Something is wrong here.  This mess always lies about when we abandon the object-act distinction. 
Couldn't the intimacy desired have come about through a close nexus?  I have no answer.  But my questions are not to be dismissed.

 

 

 

4457  I'm going to attempt to take on the venerable old philosophy of Conceptualism.  Central to that philosophy are, of course, concepts.  We all seem to have a concept of just what concepts are.  But we haven't really thought hard or even hardly at all about the matter.  It slides by.  Let's look more closely and then try to figure out just how it is that we are acquainted with them – if they do indeed exist.

 

I walk by the shop.  Eyes glare at me.  Someone stops and hesitates and then approaches.  A gesture.  A nod.  A side street is indicated.  I continue on, perhaps I am following, perhaps just moving along.  Once again a conclusion is reached.   The day is complete.  Things happen.

 

From all that, you have gathered your thoughts together and you have some sort of idea of what's going on.  It was an instance, once more, of the age-old act of cruising.  You know the concept intimately.  The concept is easy.  And the most difficult.  And maybe nothing at all.

 

Our collective heads are full of concepts and the swarm of images that surround them.  They advance and retreat.  And, of course, suffer change.  We are packed full of concepts. But what are they?

 

His lips are red.  Yes, we know all about lips and the color red.  And red lips.  The concepts are easy.  And we certainly don't begrudge the fact that others have much the same ease with much the same concept of red lips.  In fact, the same concept.  Those red lips have been with us for quite a while.  And the concept also.  But what is a concept.

 

It is obvious that my concept here and now is the same concept I had there and then when I walked by yesterday.  And, my dear, I am equally sure that the very same concept is with you here and now just as it was ever at another there and then.  The images that fly through our mind's imaginorium are constantly changing, yes, but the concept is one through all that.  Red lips are red lips – in reality and as a concept.  So it seems that that concept is one thing, here and there, in so many minds, all through history past and future.  The concept we have is, because it transcends all of us and also the moment, the Concept.  It is a thing bigger than any instant of its being thought.  It is – dare I say it – a Platonic Form.  Or it is nothing.  But how do we know such a majestic thing?

 

Should we say that we have some sort of concept of that concept?  No, the concept of a concept of a concept is instantly too much.  Oh, my friend, I think there are no such things as concepts.  But the red lips and the Eternal Form of Red Lips are as certain as the ache in my heart. 

 

A concept was an attempt to have something particular and universal at the same time.  It was just my concept, but it was also somehow more than just mine.  The concept breaks in two.  This moment flutters in the wind of eternity.  Soon it's gone, but it's never gone. 

 

 

 

4458  In the New Testament, that born of the flesh is set off against that born of the spirit.  That born of the flesh is characterized by accumulation and the protection of material goods, wealth.  That wealth includes other human beings owned by a dominant force.  Those who belong and are thus owned have duties and obligations to increase the wealth and the protection of it.  It is their only duty.  And they in turn are protected and cared for – security!  It is a system of servitude.  In New Testament times, that system, that great institution, was the Family.  The family owned you, took care of you, and demanded of you servitude.  In much of the world today, especially Asia, it is exactly the same. 

 

In Kathmandu, I have lived with teenage boys sent to the city by their family to make money and send it home.  It is a worrisome burden.  It is like "sleeping with an elephant."  It is absolute.  It sucks the spirit right out of the boy.  It is deadly.  He has no life of his own.  And that is why, in the Gospels, there is so much anti-family rhetoric.  Jesus, in the Gospels, is vehemently anti-family.  This may come as a surprise to the Christian Right, but they only have to look and read.  The counter-revolution and the resurgence of family dominance in the historical church finally succeeded in Ephesians and I Timothy.  The freedom from family that Jesus in the Gospels demanded was crushed.

 

There are times at night, in the city, when the boys crowd in together, far away from their families, and enjoy each other.  For a while they are happy and free.  But the day brings new worries.  Still, even then, they glance at each other and think of freedom and smile.  We are not so different here.

 

 

 

4459  Continuing on with my taking up on the anti-family vehemence of the Jesus Tradition, I will jump immediately to the other-worldly abstractions of rarified ontology.  I have written quite a bit, an irritating amount, about the Nexus.  That little thing that holds the world together.  The heart of fact – and we must always remember that "The world is all that is the case."  Universal unites with the bare, so vulnerable, particular.  Ain't he just a number.  Just That.  And he displays his form, The Form, right well.  Yes Yes Yes, all the way up to the so overdone by those who do it orgasmic blackout.  The final oblivion.  Nothing. The Nexus. Until tomorrow when we will all lovingly do it again.  A truly frightening delight.  A sweet nihilism.  Along with the boys up in those far blown monasteries, the garden of Nagarjuna, Master of the Nothing-at-All.  Boys need it bad.

 

 

 

 

4460  Graham Harman in Guerrilla Metaphysics has a few references to the notion of a bare particular.  Though they do have existence in some systems of ontology, they do not in his.  That object that withdraws is most certainly not bare.  I would like to defend the idea.

 

First though, let me say that there are those in my own tradition who say that even though bare particulars are dialectically necessary to ground individuality, they are not phenomenologically given.  I suppose you could take that as a sort of Harmanian withdrawal.  I, however, want to defend the idea that they are present to mind.  I do that knowing full well that such a "metaphysics of presence" is immediately suspect to many.  It is usually suspect for no reason other than that the many have been led to think that by those who have railed against it for so long.  So long, in fact, that some of us have forgotten the point.  Anyway, I will defend the idea that bare particulars are presented to the mind.

 

The world consists of facts.  A fact is a bare particular exemplifying a property.  Or so some philosophers think.  I think that.  Consider the fact that I tore my new coat on a nail as I came through the gate in front of my house.  I looked and there was that tear.  There was nothing I could do; it was just there.  That is brute fact.  That is the incorrigible facticity.  It just stares back at me as I stare at it.  There is that.

 

I can intellectuality understand what a tear is; I can imagine it happening; I can explain it and on and on with my understanding.  But after all that intellectualizing is done, that tear right there still remains.  It is.  It is brute.  That just that is the bare particular.  It is a something that cannot be thought away.  It is absolutely independent of you or of any mind.  Or of any other fact.  There it is.  It will not go away.

 

That, of course, was a rather bleak, unpleasant presentation.  I suppose I could just as easily have presented a piece of very good luck.  It would have been just as brute and irrevocable.  Incorrigible.  Stubborn.  Fixed.  To know that is to know the particular beyond all intelligible form, bare.  Just that.  As inevitable as the one sound asleep in the next room.

 

 

 

4461  God as warrior-chieftain vs. God as head of household.  A militant God vs. a bourgeois paterfamilias.  Our views of God seem to alternate between those two poles.  Here, now, the latter has won the day.  The militant God is totally banished because He was championed by the Nazis.  Nonetheless, I expect a reversal will come eventually.

 

The militant God is of a world in which the masculine principle is ascendant.  In the world of the household God that principle has been crushed under foot by the rule of the female.  There God serves the family.  He is domesticated.

 

On the battlefield as it has been depicted so often in Hellenic and Davidic poetry there is no place for women.  There the warrior has his boy companion.  His armor-bearer.  His tent-mate.  The boy takes the place of the woman.  On the battlefield there is no place for women.  There is only the sudden surprise of life and death.

 

The home, the Domus, is the place of gentle rest.  The days of battle are finished.  That glory is banished and forgotten.  It is a much more sensible place.  It is peace.  But it is not the secret heart of the male.  It suffocates.

 

Today's soldier fights for the sake of the family back home.  It is a freakish idea.  It is wrong.  It will never work. 

 

 

 

4462  When heterosexuals read the historical texts of philosophy and religion they give them an interpretation that pleases them.  Of course they do, and there is nothing wrong with that.  And when they teach those texts in school they give the heterosexual interpretation.  Of course.  I have no complaints.  What really riles me, what amazes me, is that when gay people read the same texts, they feel that they absolutely must go along with such an interpretation.  Even when the gay interpretation blares out loud, as it does in most religious and philosophical writing, the gay student is afraid to listen to it.  Yes, it is true that he has to please the teacher and he has to "fit in" with the other students and not antagonize them, but he ends up antagonizing himself.  It's time to stop overlooking the obvious.  There is a gay interpretation to philosophy and religion and gay people have to take ownership of it.  And insist on its truth.

 

 

 

4463  In particle physics, energy is talked about, not a something "active and almost alive", but as a particle.  A gauge boson, a virtual particle, gravitons, photons, etc..  The fact that energy is a particle-thing is counter-intuitive.  Nothing is moving, there are no orbits to careen around, no space to move through, just things.  It is marvelously systematic and symmetrical and almost simple to understand, but nothing is "alive and moving".  Just things existing.

 

Phenomenology is similar.  An act of perception is changed, from being the doing of a living mind, to being the exemplification of universal forms by bare particulars.  Things.  It seems that we are moving from the living to the dead.  From vital spirit to just that.  From a breathing soul to the stillness of an abstract thing.  From awareness as life to awareness built out of mere particles, pieces, of being.  It is sort of creepy.  It is downright creepy if you think about it for very long.

 

In sex there is a further similarity.  In life one uses one's hand for almost everything.  But in love-making the use is drained right out of it and it just lies there and we caress it as a thing.  Every part of the body suffers the same draining.  The final object, the thing, is just there and we gaze on it as on a thing that has moved from life to something other.  The body becomes strange.  It is sort of dead.  And there is something erotic in that. Life's energy now becomes a thing.  Analysis is what we are.  Everything comes undone.  I use sentences that once were ideas of meaning but that now become phrasal quantities in measured pieces of time.  Things hook up.  Ecstasy comes.  The Nexus is a thing.

 

 

 

4464  What is the value of metrical prose?  What is the meaning of metrical prose?  Is it merely a cover-up covering up a lack of ideas?  Or is it the joy of number and difference?  A shy transcendence.  Or of the commensurable and the incommensurable?  Paradoxically aligned.  Or not?  It is a pleasure, but sometimes a tedious pleasure.  As is all pleasure.  And dealing with number.  Yes, it is a cover-up and a lack and a sometimes grotesque idea.  But it is both human and divine.  The angels have no better past time.  And at bedtime, betimes, we know that it will all continue down through the long hallway of night.

 

 

 

4465  Imagine you are in ancient Israel.  That you are on the side of a mountain among the prophets.  That the music and the frenzy have started.  And you are waiting for your Lord, your divine Lover, to approach. And the frenzy gets louder.  Adonai.  I AM. 

 

Now imagine you are a youth of the present age alone in your room.  The same frenzy in close.  Your mind is filled with the wind and the music is well on its way.  You can feel him, Him, close.  The ancient youth on the mountain and you are one.  You have always been one.  Nothing has changed.  Nothing ever will.  The frenzy.  You are.

 

This is a charismatic religion.  Maybe a shamanistic journey.  An orgy of desire bursting out in your head.  Look about - the beloved, the beloved, the beloved.  Grab, move, hide in the Will of the wind.   Your lover God, your divine destruction.  The imagining is easy.  The filling up, the bursting out, the silent wind.  You have done it so many times already. 

 

Christianity is a charisma, a hunger, a surrender or it is nothing.  The words come, the impossible words of love, the broken meaning, the faint asking.  You are beloved again and again.  And The Great Lover has been covered up by the church behind the Law.  Now you are either alone or out on the hillside; there is no place for you among the urbane and the sophisticated.  As was Samuel, you lie in the dark and that One stands erect and uncovered over you.  The seduction and the frenzy.  And the wind blows about. 

 

 

 

4466  There is an attempt afoot today to claim all things for the God of the Continuum.  All things arise out of and fall back into the one underlying Stuff.  It's a sort of materialism.  In physics, it is akin to field theory as opposed to particle physics.  The continuous reigns over the discrete.  If I have understood correctly, this is the point of Transcendental Materialism.  It is the Monad of Leibniz over the Extension of Des Cartes and therefore of Milton.  It is Aristotle's Materia Prima before the hammer of Aquinas shattered it into Materia Signata.  Anyway, let me digress into the etymology of the word "stuff".  It is related to the words stop, stupa (as in Buddhism), tuft (as in a Buddha hair knot), and styptic (as in a pencil that makes a knick stop bleeding).  Its meaning is to condense, contract, and cluster.  It is, I supposed, similar to high energy physics looking for the unified field where all the forces and particles fuse into one thing.  Maybe these philosophers today want to say that at the high level of thinking they are doing, in the high energy generated, mind and gross matter fuse into one thing.  That in their supreme concentration all things are brought back to their blazing point of concentration.  I don't think they want to say that they are blockheads, meatheads, stuffed animals.

 

There is an attempt afoot today to claim all things for the God of the Continuum. All things arise out of and fall back into the one underlying Stuff. It's a sort of materialism. In physics, it is akin to field theory as opposed to particle physics. The continuous reigns over the discrete. If I have understood correctly, this is the point of Transcendental Materialism. It is the Monad of Leibniz over the Res Extensa of Des Cartes and therefore of Milton. It is Aristotle's Materia Prima before the hammer of Aquinas shattered it into Materia Signata. Anyway, let me digress into the etymology of the word "stuff". It is related to the words stop, stupa (as in Buddhism), tuft (as in a Buddha hair knot), and styptic (as in a pencil that makes a nick stop bleeding). Its meaning is to condense, contract, and cluster. It is, I supposed, similar to high energy physics looking for the unified field where all the forces and particles fuse into one thing. Maybe these philosophers today want to say that at the high level of thinking they are doing, in the high energy generated, mind and gross matter fuse into one thing.That in this supreme concentration all things are brought back to some blazing tumscent point. Ouch! I certainly don't think they want to say that they are blockheads, meatheads, stuffed animals merely full of it. Comfortably ensconced in vulvanic folds.

 

 

 

4467  Blog philosophers coming out of the thin abstractions of phenomenology seem now to be consumed with trying to ground the real in the ability of one thing to actively cause a change in another.  Apparently the abstractions have been so thin as to be disconcerting.  Or the new guys aren't so refined and delicate as the old.  Or they just wanted a change they could call their own.  They are into causes.  A good and proper analysis is, however and of course, not forthcoming.  La guerre commence.

 

To properly understand cause you have to understand endurance through time and that has always been an impossible bug-a-bear.  A lovely bug-a-bear; nonetheless, a coquin that you will never get to behave in front your genteel guests.  Comme il faut.  Alone, you can speculate with him all you want. 

 

So let's speculate.  An example: I tied that knot as tight as I could and his gyrations still caused it to come undone.  There seems to have been some sort of intimate relation between his going around and around and that loosening … up.  A relation?  Intimate, as in inside?  Well, no, not really, we will have to speculate further.  Maybe the vicarious sensual gyrations and the vicarious sensual knot turned and tied and untied themselves into an … it's impossible to imagine.  I'm not a good speculator.  I do know, though, that if I do come up with something I like (it's hard) that it will be wildly unimaginable and not open to complaint.  There's nothing worse than a dry analyst.  Take it and run.  Take him and hum.  Take yourselves all the way undercover and don't worry about those who want to make sense of it all.  This part of philosophy is totally irrational, incorrigible, and made for breakdown.  Disconcerting, but with a certain sweetness forthcoming.  And as far as I can ascertain in my perdurance recurrence, a happy turbulence.  C'est la guerre.  C'est la vie. 

 

Time and cause will seep out of your rigid mind and everyone will be watching.  Blog smog.

 

 

 

 

4468  When Israel changed from being a band of warriors or mountain bandits or whatever they were into being a landed people with fields to harvest and all that, then the trouble started.  A settled people depending on the fertility of the soil needs a God who can help with that, not some wild thing screaming in erotic frenzy, ascending up into the whirlwind.  They need the priests of the fertility Goddess.  Big difference!  And so Israel, Ephraim, went whoring about with new cultic sex toys.  The old God was upset – to say the least.  He called his former male lovers harlots and adulteresses.  It must have been quite a shock for those guys hanging out between life-styles.  The warrior was giving way to the farmer.  It was humiliating.  It was an even greater loss for their former Lover.  What to do.

 

And so our Greeko-semitic religion has been troubled ever since.  Are we warriors or farmers?  Are we to ride with the wind or get a day job then sit at home taking care of our family?  Are we to love our wives and the Goddess or the boys out there on the free plains alone with only each other in the great hunger?  Home is more comfortable, but the high places call and the rush of life and death in the friend's red blood.  We have no choice; we are home-bound and the old God is gone.  We are householders and businessmen.  Time sinks.

 

 

 

4469  It is seriously funny that so many bloggers are having such it's-not-funny trouble with unwanted comments to their postings.  This is my favorite:  http://itself.wordpress.com/about/  .  The only thing missing is a postscript that informs the world - "This goes for anyone who would talk to us anywhere!!"  What are we to think of it?  Is that why Jesus was upset most of the time he was here?  Can you imagine what God must have to put up with?  My Lord, I can hardly put up with half the things I say to myself.  Hell is other people, as a sort of wise Frenchman said.  We all need a way to review the things being said at us before we allow them to go on.  Is the Internet the place where the riffraff finally get at the serious and the capable?  Is it possible to develop a filter against the bothersome, the unread, the intellectually inept?  We need a government of the able and the intellectually strong.  Salve!

 

 

 

4470  There are two kinds of dance.  One is poetry.  One is prose.  The former maintains a constant repetition.  The latter always breaks the constancy.  Both pay close attention to rhythm. 

 

It is prose rhythm that is the mystery here.  It strongly exists in the best laid out sentence.  Nonetheless, though many have tried to say just what it consists of, none has succeeded. 

 

A dancer dances his line.  He is speaking to his watchers.  Sentences form and paragraphs pile up around him.  And you can read his soul, the form of his moving body.

 

And in both dance and writing the meaning, the light shining behind the movement, guides the mind into its one thing.  Without that there is only the chaos of the separate numbers.  It soon vanishes.

 

___________________

 

 

I read his sentences.  He's moving, he's writing, he's letting himself be taken.  I latch onto the form.  And though I have captured him, he is controlling my thinking.  I let it be.  I am the watcher and I have no right to interfere.  I am nothing.  I must die to myself to be that. 

 

Should we say that the one performing is a killer?  Or that the form kills.  Or the rhythm.  To live here is to die.  We are in the spiritual wars of art.  The ancient battlefields, the ancient God leading us, the ancient dying in each other's arms is lovingly still with us.  Those at home never knew.

 

 

 

4471  I belong to the transcendent classless unclass.  From this vantage point I can see it all.  I see things as God sees things.  I am of the lumpen proletariat.  I am the individual by himself.  Outside, in the outside of Being.  Along the cold trails in the marshes.  The wind brushes my legs.  From nowhere to nowhere.  The Family of Man is gone.  Reason has become unreasonable.  The end is near.  The end has always been near.  Nothing happens.  The End is.  I glance about.  I see nothing.  I see it all.

 

I see as God sees.  If you look through the eyes of the street urchin, you see as God sees.  If you glance up as does the one who has fallen, you see as God sees.  If you wait at the window for the one who never comes, you wait and see what God sees.  There is no one else here.   God looks out through my eyes.  I am a hustler of men.

 

 

 

4472  In the middle of my writing, all around it, oozing all through it, is the presence, the lover, the friend.  The center holds.  I am held.  I sing.  I dance.  I lie awake.  His middle gyrates.  Grateful eyes smile. 

 

There are so many sad beautifully broken songs all about today, all singing to the void.  To the nothing.  To that no one.  It is a community of ascetics without a god.  The uselessness threatens to loom up large.  To cancel creation.  The ablation revealed a gap, a sap, an empty lap.  Winter has a certain beauty to it, but not that.  Smiling eyes grate.

 

I am not in love with absence.  I do not sing sad songs.  I have not found despair appealing.  Such gall.  Such gas.  An exasperating lass. 

 

I muddle about in words.  I fiddle and make riddles for the bored.  For love's long sickness.  For the end that inevitably comes.  For that one instant.  That constant.  That essence of crumpled nights in Constantinople - musky turbaned heads bobbing, throbbing, robbing me of good night's sleep.  I cope.  The right knave gave me my life, his stack, but not my money back.  Who cares.

 

 

 

4473  Today religion is almost always seen as an ethical/social instrument.  It is a part of politics.  It is for the good or ill of Mankind.  It is very abstract.  And if it is not abstract it is a help or bane to those who need consoling; it gives hope of a better world, a world without psychological and physical pain or it takes it away.  It is never never an erotic encounter with a god.  Such a thing is from our long lost immoral pagan past, a foul sensualism and all that.  We are filled with erotophobia when it comes to God.  Eros is a god out on the margins, in the marshes, blowing in the wild reeds.

 

Nonetheless, this Lover God was the God of ancient Israel.  It is the God who has been abandoned in favor of the modern social advisor, the ethical, the family friend.  The old God now sits with those out on the edges listening to the rushing wind in the pipes.  There agape is eros.  Who knew.

 

Theorists today usually see religion as a reaction to a fearful something.  Or as an attempt to instill fear.  Fear is the controlling emotion.  We live in such fearful times.  The thought that religion may have had its origin in erotic desire is dismissed along with all the other "sex things" as hardly worth talking about.  Sex is the negligible thing.  Fear of the erotic is what defines the theorist.  Still, for all that the sexual is frightening.

 

Should we say that this is an attempt at family through the instrument of shared loneliness?

 

 

 

4474  Lying under the heavy sky, listening to the pushing wind, in the still rush of Being, I sink down; the prairie burns.  I can feel the Spirit over me.  He comes.  He is lover.  He takes.  There is no let up.  There is no standing against it.  There is no way out.  He takes what he wants.  Life remains the ancient battlefield.  We lie down and die.  Nothing has changed.

 

I read the philosophy blogs.  They all, every one of them, seem to have some Ideal toward which they want to point mankind.  Some truth.  Some fresh air to breathe.   Up ahead is some difficult, intellectual mountain to climb.  If only, if only … .  Time presses.  They are gentle people writing to each other.  It's a civilized adventure.  Ever polite and respectful, even when they try to attack, they are so decent.  And they lay their head in the lap of the family of man. 

 

I lie still and He comes over me.  This God of the end times.  This God of stifled frenzy.  This God of the blanking out.  Courage is somehow given.  I will last the night.  I write only the charge.

 

Nietzsche wrote, "I must reach a new and higher form, I need in the first place a new separation, an even greater depersonalization."  In the battle you become an erotic thing. 

 

 

 

4475  Pratitya Samutpada and Svabhava.  Sometimes translated as conditioned arising and own-being.  I suppose it could also be stepping up out of a hitting together and self being.  The basic idea, in yet other words, concerns whether a thing such as that guy's hair has the ground of its existence in things other than itself or only in itself.  In popular talk, is it caused or uncaused.  Popular talk, though, finds the very idea of being uncaused to be an unidea.  In this time of scientific materialism, everything is caused, which means that everything, through a bumping and grinding, arises magically out of the primordial sludge.  The magic is the force of scientific laws.

 

Let's say you put your fingers together like that guy in the picture above.  Voilà, you have a heart.  We could say that the heart arose out of the condition of his fingers being together in a certain way.  Or we could say that the heart has its own being.  Taking your strap and extrapolating that to the whole of the cosmos you could say that all things arise similarly.  Or that all things have their own-being.  Surely, the modern mind wants to say that everything arises from something else, or in techno-speak, everything is a function over many independent variables.  As for that guy's hair, that is another matter.  It most certainly is a thing unto itself. 

 

Not just to be contrary, but I think the whole idea of arising out of something else is simply wrong.  It makes no sense at all.  It's as impossible as the wonderfulness of that smile arising out of carbon and oxygen atoms crashing together and fusing.  It ain't going to be.  Nonetheless, the power of the modern scientific attitude is so great as to believe something that is clearly just more sludge.  Or what?

 

Even that boy is a thing in itself, of itself, just from itself.  As are you, my lovely eternal reader.  Think about it.

 

 

 

4476  He turned and looked at me and my heart sank.  A faint smile crossed his lips and my spirit soared.  That is life.  That is super-life.  In an instant all of existence is crossed and crossed out.  Any action that is there is as though it is nothing.  And everything.  Time erases itself into a far eternity.  You are there.  You knew it all along.  Nothing has ever changed.  It is the most intimate of intimacies.  It is both life and death at once.  The world is gone and there is only that.  Bham!

 

 

 

4477  If you are catholic then you know that Mary was assumed into heaven bodily.  She didn't have to die because of her Immaculate Conception.  And so we have the feast of the Assumption.  In ancient mythology there is the story of Zeus falling in love with the Prince of Troy, Ganymede.  He took the form of an eagle and grabbed him and carried him off to heaven to be his cupbearer.  The Transumption.  It is that last that, for the ancient poets, became the symbol of the power of the poetic word to lose its earthly, ordinary meaning and become a vehicle for transporting the soul on high.  Things magically change.

 

Imagine you are going about your everyday activities.  You do this and that.  This acts upon that.  Things are in flux.  Then it happens.  The magic of the moment strikes you.  He appears around the corner.  He reaches out and touches the glass and that act reveals eternity to you.  The pure form is right there.  Time stops.  You are transumed along with the glass and the touch and the moment.  It is that change that is the vision of … of what?  It's the magic moment that philosophers have tried to capture.  And religionists.  And, of course, poets.  And even today, when we play the game of Pascal, the game of trying to force a vision of a world empty of enchantment, all the better to force it to come, even today the transumptive moment is our only goal.  Maybe today it will happen.  Again.  And again.

 

 

 

4478  If you look at the other blogs on the Internet, at ordinary philosophy books and articles, at the things discussed in conferences.  If you look almost anywhere, you will not find philosophy written in this romantic, erotic way that I do.  For all that, however, I am not alone in doing philosophy as I do.  It's just that today when Protestant high seriousness has taken over the scene that I am the only one.  The whole Platonic rhetorical tradition, the medieval mystics, the Islamic sufis, the sensual cabal at Oxford a hundred years ago, the American Transcendentalists, the devotees of Krishna, the hippies of my own time and on and on, all of them avoided this deadly malaise of academia.  What to do.  It will pass as a bad dream.

 

 

 

4479  I am a writer.  The words I write down may seem to have a topic.  It may seem that I am writing about this or that, some person, some piece of reality out there.  It may seem that it is I who is writing.  In fact, the topic is not what it seems nor is it really I who is writing.  For many long years I have read and read.  I have moved about and around and always I moved in the rhythms of life.  The words now write themselves.  Surely they are a repetition of all the other words I have read.  And their movement is the rhythm of the life of words.  There is little else in these writings.

 

Yes, it is true that some ideas, some words, advance and present themselves as proper for the moment.  And some decline to come my way and attempt to twist and distort those that do.  Writing is a matter of self-defense against the deluge of words that have gone before.  It is always a belated act. 

 

Others will read what I write; they will react violently, for good or ill.  Their own words, words that are no more theirs than mine are really mine, will attempt an attack, for good or ill.  Distortions will rise up.  Dead words will live again.  The recent meanings will have vanished.  Words are the place of the battle of the gods.  Words are a battlefield.  Nothing is ever lost.  Everything is new.

 

The spirit moves where it will.  The young boy sits and writes and it is the ancient thing moving through him.  Words are not a human, a social thing.  These gods are not pieces of man's mind.  Rather man and his thoughts are pieces of this god.  The boy slides up close.  The genius throws his semantic lens on him.  It is scattered and opaque.  And light in his touch.  He sleeps in its dream.

 

I write what I have read.  The one I write about has become for me the incarnation of the words that have gone through me.  The abstractions become his lithe physique.  Nothing more.

 

 

 

4480  Spinoza is very popular today I suppose because he is master of the Outline Form.  He is a sort of monist.  That is to say, he attempts to bring all things under or inside one structure or system or corral.  The Outline.  He aims for the Whole thing.  All things are there.  God and the Outline are one.  Today we also call that Powerpoint.  It is one with the scientific drive toward Enumeration.  Bullets that kill. 

 

It is artificial, but it is under control.  It is also the sign of authority.  It is Order.  It invites commentary on its greatness.  All things are there in the one Outline.  It holds the world.  More than the world, it holds all possible worlds.  It is God.  The Outline.  And therefore, we set up universities where we teach the young how to handle miniature outlines of their own.  We are teaching them to aim for the Whole.  Of course, they can only attain a miniature whole.  The Outline is there as the model.  It is very helpful.

 

In Spinoza and the Outline, even the emotions are brought inside.  If you have an outline and therefore a plan for your life, a step by step procedure, you will be able to take care of those painful movements within you and you can be master of the Outline.  And have a degree, or certificate, and you will be placed on the Register.  Everything, even you, has a place in the system.

 

In the Outline, there is that final moment where the Outline proves its own existence.  It must be because it is the All.  Step by step by step it steps into itself.  Order is ordered up.  And your messy mind is cleaned up in knowing that.  Give in to the Outline Form.  It is all very helpful. 

 

 

 

4481  Another philosopher we cannot seem to stop talking about is Nietzsche.  I too have said my piece and here I say more.  He is the opposite of Spinoza.  No one has accused Nietzsche of being too systematic, too rationalistic, too helpful.  His is a love story.

 

In Ecce Homo, Nietzsche's heart is revealed.  He has been in pain for a long, long time.  He talks of his father.  As last we see that he had always been in love with his father.  And when his father died Nietzsche went through hell. Then we see that two of the most potent demons of that hell were his mother and his sister.  Always far off, from out of the nightmare and visions of ghosts, and blinding pain, he could see his angelic father.  In his terrible decadence he could see health and strength and life up ahead.  That beautiful one.  His reaching for it was wrenching anguish.  It was the mightiest strength a boy could muster, a boy whose father had died.  Nothing in man is stronger.  It is a fearsome love story.  It has consumed us for a century. 

 

We really don't know what drove Spinoza on.  Maybe his hard, exact rationalism systematically incorporating emotion, controlling it, beating it down, also came out of something similar.  But we will never know.  Philosophers who are opposites may be the same spirit.

 

 

 

4482  What is knowledge?  What is wisdom?  In the last few blogs, I have laid out, for my friend, an understanding of … no, a vision of … no, a presentation of … none of that.  I have simply put on a show.  Maybe he enjoyed it, maybe not.  I had fun giving it.  And I did it because I was simply trying to return the favor.  He put on a wonderful show once for me and, if it had gone on for days, I have no doubt but that I would have enjoyed it thoroughly.  Someday his students will do the same.  It is obvious.  He is putting together his show right now. 

 

Knowledge and wisdom are both a show.  They are a presentation of gestures.  A man of knowledge, of wisdom, speaks in a certain way, sits in a certain way, dresses, stands and walks in a certain way.  Civilization has spent thousands of years developing all the little, nuanced movements that indicate knowledge and wisdom.  And we are all impressed when it is done well.  And granted an advanced college degree.  It is no more than that.  Ask a learned man about Plato and he will fumble and grunt and look here and there giving those fine signs of breadth and depth of spiritual and cultural understanding.  That's enough.  He is impressive.  And maybe well-paid.

 

Nietzsche was a master of writing about it because he had to learn it.  He was in a desperate situation.  To those who watched him in person, he was quite obviously a – how to say this – an aging sissy-boy.  Behind his back people talked.  And smiled a malicious smile.  And would never let him into their high places.  Nietzsche tried mightily to butch it up.  He knew that appearance was everything.  It gave him terrible headaches.  He knew that being a man of knowledge and status was all gesture.  He never got far.  But he came close to destroying that world with his writings.  So we read without reading.  We know how to give the appearance of having read.  We practice the lingo, the convoluted syntax, the grunts and pauses.  It's a show.  Look at Žižek with all his tics and twitches; it's the sign of a very learned man.

 

And now I've gotten myself in terrible trouble because I have made my friend look like a mere showman.  Let me quote a man of true wisdom, Oscar Wilde in The Picture of Dorian Gray, "Beauty is the wonder of wonders.  It is only the shallow people who do not judge by appearances."  The world is here to delight us.  Some people delight us more than others.  Personally, I really like sissy-boys.  Aging sissy-boys are another matter.  Being no longer young myself, I don't much like age at all.  The academic show is getting old.  It is no longer pleasing.  We all, today, realize that academic degrees are not much.  My friend will get a degree, but I hope he will be able to get beyond it.  His show is still fresh and lively.  Mankind wants little else, no needs more.

 

 

 

4483  Is the world one or is it a many that will not hang together?  Is it a complexity continually falling?  It is a smooth simple thing?  Opposites lie together as one thing in my thought.  He is gone; he and I are the same one.  My destiny is all things; my fate is peculiar.  Beyond the many divisions, I arrive unscathed.  I spread my arms and I am where the god dies.  And is reborn.  In a frenzy I come into just That.  The turn turned itself around.  A sickening sweetness filled the air.  No exit.  Lips onto lips.  A sigh inside a sigh.  The end is the beginning.  No one see.  The gods are voyeurs.

 

We all speak monologues to ourselves.  There is no one else.  I perform my dance of knowledge.  I read into writing.  I write myself into scattered ejaculations.  Projections, injections, rejected by all and none.  It's a waste of time.  His waist was so suavely secure.  A fine thing.  A right nice fit in my hand.  I broke in two.  The world is comprehended easily.  There is no world.  Only him.  He waits.

 

I really don't know if he exists or not.  Perhaps he is beyond all that.  As am I.  The categories of thought mangle and fuse.  I refuse to consider the possibility.  He fits into my mind's grasp so easily.  The world is just his oneness.  I sink.

 

Universal and particular are at each other again.  They have been that way all night.  I have gotten no sleep.  The walls are so thin.  I should complain to the manager.  Will they ever learn to get along?  I even hear their screams when I am out walking.  Just this one or the eternal?  Or both or none?  Does nothing exist or does everything?  It matters, it matters.  That one coming my way is so lovely.  I have seen him all my long life.  And he will come my way again tomorrow.  And Tomorrow.

 

 

 

4484  Nietzsche eventually destroyed all possibility of knowledge when he showed us that it was all gesture and acting.  Or do you not believe him?  All of his life he had been an actor.  He knew the actor's role well.  He was homosexual.  A homosexual person at that time had to be an actor to hide, to stay alive, to simply exist.  Or don't you believe that?  Surely, you may think, all of that, if true, is irrelevant to his wonderful insights.  Maybe.  Nonetheless, knowledge is an actor's gesture.  I ask again, do you believe that?

 

What is knowledge?  What is wisdom?  In the last few days, I have laid out, for my friend, an understanding of … no, a vision of … no, a presentation of … none of that.  I have simply put on a show.  Maybe he enjoyed it, maybe not.  I had great fun giving it.  And I did it because I was simply trying to return the favor.  He put on a wonderful show once for me and, if it had gone on for days, I have no doubt but that I would have enjoyed it thoroughly.  Someday his students will do the same.  It is obvious.  He is putting together his show right now. 

 

Knowledge and wisdom are both a show.  They are a presentation of gestures.  A man of knowledge, of wisdom, speaks in a certain way, sits in a certain way, dresses, stands and walks in a certain way.  Civilization has spent thousands of years developing all the little, nuanced movements that indicate knowledge and wisdom.  And we are all impressed when it is done well.  It is no more than that.  Ask a learned man about Plato and he will fumble and grunt and look here and there giving those fine signs of breadth and depth of spiritual and cultural understanding.  That's enough.  He is impressive. 

 

Nietzsche was queer, just as am I.  He learned to appear otherwise.  And he had great headaches.  I know about that also.  I have the same blockheads to deal with.  I put on a show of knowledge and culture.  I know the show.  Knowledge is a show.  It can be a wonderful show.  I hope my friend enjoyed it.

 

Knowledge has not been destroyed.  It has become a glittering jewel in the ear of the god who rules us.  As Oscar Wilde said, "It is only the shallow people who do not judge by appearances."

 

 

 

4485  If knowledge just as knowledge exists and it appears, then it has appeared, for us, as gesture and movement and grain of the voice.  And twisted sign-marks on white.  Knowledge qua knowledge, Being qua Being, the One just as itself.  Could such a thing be?  And what of the appearing?

 

An appearing, we have learned to our dismay, can be either true or false.  Gesture and voice and signs are strange indeed.  How could they possibly be true appearings?  How could a kiss be love?  How could a glance be a weapon?  Is it all simulacrum?  How could death be a thing of ethereal consciousness?  Is it delusion?  It is maybe nothing at all.  But reality blazes.  Truth does exist.  At times we see perfectly.

 

Knowledge as just that and Being and the One exist.  We are intimate with them.  We know and are and feel little else.

 

 

 

4486  I have lived for quite a number of years in Asia always near Buddhist monasteries.  I have loved to venture in and around these places where the sound of chanting was the essential mood setter.  I was a squatter.  I listened and drank it in.  In the West, we are usually given the impression that some sort of intellectualization is the key to understanding that religion.  It isn't; it's the almost constant chanting.  And it is that chanting that is, I have come to think, the link between the Buddhism of today and ancient Buddhism and also with the other religions of yesterday and today.

 

How did religion begin?  It seems to me now that it was in what we would today call a Rave.  Prophets or devotees out on the hillside or in the woods or on the bare savannah going around and around working themselves up into a frenzy of repetition.  The monasteries are a direct line from that.  It is a charismatic thing.  Heads spin.  Thought whirls.  The groin aches.  Especially in the monasteries, where the young are so seductive.

 

It is in that rave frame of mind that we should understand the truly wild logical reelings of Buddhist argument.  Silver fire.  Until the mind blanks out.  Nirvana.

 

Just as the ancient Hebrew prophets raved on the hillside and it laid them flat.  And from that came the heartbreaking, romantic triangle of Saul, David and Jonathan and it laid out this terrible religion we now run from.  But which still has us in thrall.  And the romance still raves us wild.

 

I write in rhythmical English, which I learned in church where the meter of that old bible ran through me.  From head to groin.  I am thus aligned with all the other American writers so addicted to it.  I write and rave.  The chant is everything.  The intellectualizing is a diversion.

 

 

 

4487  As you might imagine in these days of technology's infancy, we are surrounded, imprisoned, by the most complex theories of complexity, networks, assemblages, encroaching giants of massively refined matter.  It's fun.  For a while.  Then it grates.

 

Where oh where is the simplicity?  I am not the one to give it.  I go on and on about nothing much at all.  Nonetheless, I always have in my sights the delicately arrayed most perfectly simple One possible.  Unlike the complexualists who will break you with their Over-much, I give you the heartbreaker whose simplicity is beyond simplicity.  The ultra-refined.  The sassy god of Just-that.  There isn't much I can say about him.  I've said way too much already.  Still, I have to talk because otherwise my nerves shatter.  It ain't pretty.  I manage.

 

Stay always from the philosophy blogs; they'll clog up your mind.  And make you forget.  And read me only once in a while.  I'm no more than a lover who's lost his head.  I write ordinary love-sickness. 

 

 

 

4488  First philosophy is ontology.  Ontology asks the question, What exists?  Most philosophy today is, once again, nominalistic, and has changed the question to, How do objects gather together? 

 

From Wikipedia on ontology:

"Some philosophers, notably of the Platonic school, contend that all nouns (including abstract nouns) refer to existent entities. Other philosophers contend that nouns do not always name entities, but that some provide a kind of shorthand for reference to a collection of either objects or events."

 

As a Platonist I would say that not only do "abstract" nouns refer to existents, but so do connector words, such as "is", "if-then" and "means", even "participation".  As I see it, collections without such connectors or nexus are nothing at all.  Something must give unity.  Today's nominalists simply space it off.   They may make a distinction between a material object and a sensual object that is "caused by" it.  Nonetheless, they are both objects and the "caused by" is a fumble word.  If they bring in events, then that is also an individual thing like an object.  For the most part, the question about existence is either dismissed or handed over to the contextualists.

 

So I do a sort of Platonism.  Let me analyze a structure.  Today's network guys are basically concerned about what kinds of structures exist.  My question is What exists to ground there being structures in the first place?  Let's talk about a face.  A face is one thing.  It is a particular and it is the Form of Face.  And, of course, those two things are tied together.  This particular is a face.  In symbols, x is F.  That part is easy; we easily named the existents.  A face is also many parts tied together: a mouth, a nose, two eyes and on and on.  Not only do they exist (in the same ontological way as does a face), but there are also relations between the various particulars and they are tied together "in" an ordered structure.  It's obviously complex, but there are degrees of complexity.  You may look at any degree you want; some are rather easy for the human mind to hold at one time.

 

Just as the Form of Face, as I see it, exists as a simple thing, do Structures also exist as simple entities other than the elements that are "in" them?  I will somehow have to say, Yes.  It is a most difficult question, though.  And then there will have to be connectors to tie together the structure and those elements that "belong" to it.  Well, ok, there are such connectors.  And the nominalists roll their collective eyes.

 

 That's enough.  The analysis goes on and on into the night.  Ontology approaches the mystical.  And I land squarely in the land of the ancient religions.  It's inevitable.  It's no wonder the nominalists of today didn't want to go there.  I really don't mind.  I'm game.

 

In the not too distant past when ontology was aligned with religion it was therefore aligned with religion's God.  And, for my on-the-lookout gay mind, that opens up delightful possibilities.  But maybe you don't want to go there.  Another time.

 

 

 

4489  In many mathematics books Order is defined like this:  (a(a,b)).  I have never been able to see why that is a definition of order, but I have tried and I still am.  It should be read like this:  a is different from the circumstance that a is different from b.  It is a circumstance of difference "inside" a circumstance of difference.  Difference inside difference.  Maybe difference differencing itself inwardly.  Or the difference of difference.   Or … you can continue on.  I still can't get it.  But I almost can.  Like a dream, I can almost grasp the meaning.  I twist and turn and then I wake up into … nothing.  I  have failed once again to get it.  It has something to do with difference itself.  Or difference being different from difference.  Or maybe we should substitute the word "other" for difference, but I don't think it would help much. 

 

The Buddhists think there is no such thing as difference.  Is difference a thing?  Does difference make red different from yellow?  Is difference transcendental?  A Transcendental?  Is there any sense to that question?  Somehow there is and I can almost grasp it.  But not quite.  I hover in that in-between place that is metaphysics.

 

 

 

4490  Charisma is a wonderful word.  It comes from the Indo-European root *gher,  from which we get our word "hunger" and "yearn" and "greedy" and "exhort".  It is Greek χαρις or charis, which is translated as "grace".  By the grace of God, means by the hunger of God.  It is grace that makes the beloved surrender.  It is grace that shines on the face of beauty.  It is hunger than drives on the world toward it long forgotten end.  Charisma is no more than hunger and yearning.  It is sweet pain.  It is gentle anguish.  And it is the tormenting itch of sprouting wings.  So, it is the startled look of love.  The quiet fidgeting.  The unrelenting.  I don't want to stop my describing it, but there you are.

 

 

 

4491  If I reach into my pocket and I find a strange object and I ask my friend what it is, and he tells me that that was put in there by a ghost, then I still will have no idea what it is.  In other words, knowing where something came from does not tell me what a thing is.  Only where it came from.  Likewise, if I consider an ordered relation, aRb and different from bRa, and I ask the ontological question of the ground of Order, of that difference, then it will do no good at all to tell me that that order was put in there by  my mind or the ghost of language or whatever.  I will then only know where it came from and not what it is. 

 

To attempt to say what something is by referring to its genesis, its origin, is to commit the Genetic Fallacy.  Therefore to say that purple is the coming together of red and blue is a fallacy.  To say that a shadow is the coming together of directed sunlight and a solid object is a fallacy.  To say that water is the coming together of hydrogen and oxygen is a fallacy.  To say that sound is air vibrating against the eardrum and then entering the labyrinth of the brain is a fallacy.  Laying out cause and effect pathways is not the same as doing ontological analysis.  To say how something came about is not to say what it is.  To lay out a thing's relations to other things is irrelevant to saying what it is in itself.  (Such is Russell's idea of relations being external to that they relate.)

 

Of course, if you do not believe in such a thing as the thing in itself then … never mind.  If, for you, only relational networks exist then … never mind.  If there is no What, only Wherefrom then … never mind.  Then you do not believe in ontology, you believe only in science and its search for origins.

 

 

 

4492  Substance philosophies, and therefore today's object-oriented philosophies, along with Leibnizean, Hegelian and Whitheadean philosophies of dynamic change, all leave you with that lost and wandering feeling of endless unease.  Finally, there is only paradox.  It is the reign of antinomy and ultimate ambiguity.  It is the compression point of time's Instant giving way.  Logic withers in the heat of the dynamo.   A thing is finally neither this nor that, but both, and something else entirely.  Then again, religious frenzy and the joyful catastrophe may have been the goal all along.  By now, we are a strange band of belated spirits.

 

 

 

4493  Today's philosophers of dynamic change, in order to have their kif and freedom too, have their Something with "its" whole world spinning inside it.  An Object, just like the ancient Substance, "contains" all its forms, all its aspects that ever were, are and will be; all its relations to other objects; its own cave to hide in.  For some, that something was a one-thing, nestled in a non-existent unspace, amo-tween other one-things.  For others there was only One Thing.  God, Time, Mind, The Absolute, Our Only Reality.  History!  Inwardly spinning churning, mawing - Spinning.  The Dynamo works a world into existence.  Dividing itself uniting.  Dividing uniting.  Dividing uniting.  In the forever of its own making.  The dark  Machine of Genesis.  And we are the fuel mercifully freed from our own would-be-selves.  Inside the Inside.

 

Unlike a particular Karma which is a line no one else owns, History is universal and it has conspired with itself to make Us.  We are each a node of concrescence, a concrete thing.  Blockheads.   Within That.  To find an individual in that Giant Thing you will need to "artificially and therefore injudiciously" mark off a piece of Space/Time.  Rather, we are blindingly blended with all other unthings in That.  So hurled about.

 

Substance was abandoned because it left each thing so unmercifully isolated and eternal.  It was necessary that it be its own time and place.  That it be fettered irrevocably only to itself within itself.  That it always dream.  That is why we finally came to see that there is only One Substance imagining a world.  But, perhaps, because it is that-beyond-which-there-can-be-no-greater its imaginings must of necessity slip over into reality. We are the turnings of a Perfect  Dream.  Or not and we are the misgivings of a demigod. 

 

"A man when he is drunk is led by an unfledged boy, stumbling and not knowing where he goes, having his soul moist.  To God all things are beautiful and good and just, but men have supposed some things to be unjust, other just".

 

 

 

4494  If someone were to read my writings and then write a piece on that for me, I would not expect them to "get it" just right.  My God, I can't get it just right myself.  I would hope for a totally new vision about just what is in there.  I want to find something there that I hadn't seen before, some new landscape to walk across, some new spirit to flirt with, a different handle by which to hold on.  I want him, in other words, to get it all wrong.  I want to see something other.  I want to be entertained with new visions – pleasant or fearsome.  And when I read another and comment, I hope I get it all wrong and present a new thing for that writer to sit with and chat with and lie down with.  Only journalists and scholars try to get it right.

 

 

 

4495  The relation of man to Being is the relation of beloved to lover.  If you see it like that then the alternation of presence and absence makes perfect sense.  Likewise the joy and the despair.  Man approaches Being in the fear that love brings.  The fear of offending, the fear of being left alone, the fear of losing one's self in the love that breaks boundaries.  Being, my dear, has made you beautiful for His sake.  You are looked at.  You come undone in His gaze.  You are taken and there is no relenting.

 

All speaking now becomes play and dissimulation.  Lovers understand well.  That calm composure hides the fire of agitation.  The heart bleeds through the skin.  The skin shines with thematic power.  The day will bring relief and a more sensible understanding, but the day will be betrayed.  The night of Being will always be sought out, again and again.

 

Being is a jealous lover.  Your God is a jealous God.  You are in a dangerous place.  Hide in irony.  Undo what you have done up.  The Presence will burn.  There is no hiding place.  Your lover is finally only yours.  My boy, the man comes.  Your fate is written clearly between your eyes.  It makes perfect sense.

 

 

 

4496  Someone has left a peanut butter and jelly sandwich on the table.  I'm going to eat it.  If your ontology can't analyze that simple thought then you have a most inadequate ontology.  Obviously there are mental acts of perception and imagination and anticipation going on.  And sensing and enjoying and others.  You may even be wondering if you should do it and maybe someone else will get angry if you do and on and on.  So many thoughts.  Quick eat it before someone comes.  But before that let's make an ontological analysis of all that.  And because it is the ontology of a mental act it will be epistemology.

 

We will be looking for a theory of knowing, but not the criteria of truth.  That last we will leave to the psychologists.  What is an act of knowing, of a mental act.  Let's take the act of perceiving that this is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  First of all it has the property of being a perception.  Therefore let's say that perception is a form exemplified by this particular mental act, in much the same way that purple is exemplified by the jelly.  A particular and a form or universal that is exemplified.  But there is obviously more to a mental act than that.

 

There is also the thought content.    There is the thought: [This is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.]  Please note, such a thought is not a sensing.  We do, along with thinking the thought, also sense a great multitude of sensa, but, even when they are all put together, they do not equal a thought.  Indeed, a thought and a sensing are very different things.  Therefore, in the mental act we are considering, there is the particular, there is the form of perception and there is also the thought, namely the thought that [This is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich].   Most philosophies today do not have thoughts as a part of them.  Thoughts exist.  They are simple universals or forms that are there to be exemplified by mental particulars.  THOUGHTS EXIST.

 

Now, of course, we are going to have to have some way to connect the thought with its object, but not now.  It seems to me that all those philosophers that claim to come from Brentano and Husserl should know all this, but they seem not to.  They have been bamboozled by science which reduces everything to cause and effect.  The intentional nexus is not a cause and effect nexus!

 

 

 

4497  Kant taught us to look hard at the transcendental unity of consciousness.  Why is it that today almost nobody does?  Consider the fact that it snowed 6 inches last night and we are expecting more by morning.  I can think about that very complex fact in one simple thought.  The extension and the divisions of the world yield to the one simple thing that is Mind.  No one is mentioning that in any ontological discussion I have read.  They seem to all have come from the empiricist/scientific community where everyone thinks that if you talk about sensa you have it all.  There is more to mind than sensations.  Anyway, sensa are multiple and no amount of bundling will give you a world. 

 

 

 

4498  If we can get rid of this absurd notion that is permeating "cognitive" philosophy today, namely that thought consists of sensations bundled, with or without a corresponding object, then we can maybe get to Mind itself.  I am thought, not merely sensations.  The world is there in propria persona before me, not through a representative in the senses.  That is what mind does.  It is aware of things directly.  I see the world and its varied forms.  I do not know merely sensations "in" my head.

 

 

 

4499  I have said that the noteworthy element in my writing is not the content, but the form.  The content is a rather ordinary Platonism and I have contributed little to the idea.  Platonism is, however, noteworthy for its rhetorical flare.  And I do think that I too rise to the heights, or at least part way up out of the gloom of life.  Or maybe I have just jacked myself up on some sweet repetition and I can see farther than your average dog.  Here is an example from the last posting.

 

Consider the cadence, the metered ending of one of the sentences.  … the sudden surprise of life and death.  Please notice that it begins with th and ends with th.  There is an alliteration of s.  r alternates with l.  p with f.  And the d emphatically repeats.  Moreover, the phrase is balanced.  And the vowel changes progress and retreat.  And … well, you can already see how great it is.

 

 

 

4500  Almost all of the other philosophy blogs on the Internet today are what might be called conceptual.  They do not appeal to the senses at all.  Nor is there anything there that might be called an Object, which is strange in this object-oriented time.  I present PICTURES for your viewing pleasure.  Such objects!  I give you rhythmical sentences, the grain of your own voice reading, and, of course, a tight paragraph object.  I do not conceptualize.  I let the philosophical Thing ooze.  And when I speak of mind and thought, they are not concepts but the thing itself become you, my dear reader.

 

 

 

4501  So much of what is written today on political theory seems to imply that if each man and each woman could just get out from under the grimy hands of the corrupt, the rich and the powerful, then he and she would be able to prosper in peace together.  I admit that I take a much more conservative and therefore dark view of the matter at hand.  I – I don't know why – see and feel the human being to be much too much of a caldron of emotions to let such a blithe and peaceful scene unfold.  As I have gotten older, I am impressed by two things in man: he is much more intelligent than I had suspected, but he is also much closer to a nervous breakdown.  The possibility of violence is very close.  He is, by nature, a ferocious thing, intellectually, spiritually and physically.  And all that is not the result of bad institutions, if anything those strong institutions have somewhat kept it all in check.  We are continually balanced finely on the edge.  The world will not go away and life is stirring around and around.  We wait for we know not what.

 

 

 

4502  Most of the things I know, and know directly, are not sensa.  I directly know numbers and the relations that exist "between" them.  I know all the logical connectors.  I know universals and bare particulars.  I know facticity and negation.  I know all and some and none.  I know Beauty itself.  I know God.  That Hunger.  The Surrender.  The Plallos.  Simplicity.  All directly.  All shining in the searing light of intellect.  All right there in an eternal There.  The inhuman Dasein.  And obviously not one of those things is a creation of my mind – or yours.  And certainly not of that mythical wraith called human history.  These are the simple Things that exist.

 

 

 

4503  Let us attempt a speculative mood.  We will abandon the phenomenological epochè.  We will, by means of doubt, move beyond all that appears.  We will be as disinterested as an aged professor.  We are headed into unchartered seas.  We will be happy.

 

We are here, obviously, on much the same journey that Des Cartes took when he attempted to doubt all he had previously believed.  And therefore we will also glance over at Kierkegaard, who commented so romantically on the prospect of such a great journey.  Of course we will give proper attention to the modern speculators.

 

So now we see that everything lying round about us, because of our devastating doubt, lies there in ruin.  That itself is strangely comforting.  The world is gone.  We are sailing over the horizon of Being.

 

Now all we know is doubt.  We hold out our hand and say, No!  We will believe nothing.  Are you still here with me?  I wonder if I should doubt you also – and cancel you too.  My dear, you do look rather like a ruin today.  Oh well, we will go on together.

 

I'm bored.  The appearing phenomena were so appealing, so entertaining.  This is devastation and nothing else.  I see nothing.  Only my own doubt, which I am now beginning to doubt and anything at all.  Should we go back and play with the players?  I'm moody. 

 

Des Cartes gambit of doubt never did appeal to many.  Nor did Plato's idea of philosophy as mere love of knowledge.  The moderns wanted knowledge, real knowing.  And so the System was born.  And then the System crashed.  Now, following Nietzsche, who people think said that the question and the journey is more important than the answer and rest, we endless pose new questions to each other and give potential answers and then move on.  And we surmise that we may be poets.  Nothing has helped our moodiness.  And we have become bitchy.

 

 

 

4504  Poor Des Cartes, today he is no nobody's list of the philosophical good guys.  Everyone, though, is certain of his importance.  It's just that he laid out on the body of Being a division, a cut, that could not heal.  And he caused Milton's Satan to fall from heaven.

 

Extension is his great idea.  Bleak, boring Langweiligkeit.  Who can be master of that.  Who would want to.  We lie here with our fallen hero.  We write poetry.  The pain will not go away.  But our philosophies are magnificent in their going on and on to nowhere.  We haven't moved or if we have everywhere is so similar to every other somewhere that it's all the same.  Monotony rules.   That is our magnificence.

 

We are the masters of Extension.  Intension, the tight gathering, has come loose.  This and then that and then another and there is no end to it.  A landscape of boulders all the same.  And for all that there is no repetition.  Just one more and just one more.  We fell far, but a light year's distance is the same as nothing here.  Why go on.  We have to go on.  No one likes Des Cartes.  The cut still hurts.  Space is shattered.  Mind is shattered.  Love is shuttered away.

 

And so we have the particle theory of matter – a mild excitement.  Waves give way to pieces.  Substance breaks apart into its constituent parts.  The whole is nowhere.  Only the infinite pieces.  Unity is not here.  And though we make functions from remembered numbers, they are too weak to hold.  Chaos has scrambled out minds.  The palm of the hand is empty.  No discourse on method will help.  It is truly a dis-course.  The meta-odos has met the otiose ex-tension.  The center of the sphere is everywhere.  And nowhere.  Thought is cracked and leaks.  And excitement fails. 

 

The deniers of extension and the Cut have tried to take all this magnificence away from us.  But it is just God by another name. The cat grins.  Objects explode.

 

 

 

4505  Spinoza tried hard to heal the wound of Cartesian dualism.  He only succeeded in deepening the cut.  His one thing was no relief for an inconsolable diad.  The dual cannot be reduced.  Or all becomes illusion and groundless hope.  We bleed.  The sacrifice succeeded.  We are the victims laid aside after the priests have gone home.  Still dead.  And alive.  And dead.  And still conscious.  Monism is ontological trash.  Thought, more thought!  The One.  The Dual.  Two things that are one.  Oh, my impossible love, I have strayed beyond the limits of what can be both said and thought.  I am in the land of non-existent ontological things.  Pushing harder won't work.  Ignoring the problem won't work.  So I dance lightly with words.  And I await the god's breath in my lungs.  Whoosh!

 

 

 

4506  We now theorize in our oppression that many universes were created in the Big Bang, itself perhaps only one among many Big Bangs still banging.  And in those and these universes the physical constants that govern, the laws, the primal elements were/are and will, no doubt, be different.  Infinity raises its majestic and terrifying head.  And now there is the certainty that in all these multiverses there is only one common type of mathematics at play and in other multiverses other types govern.  Mathematics, being defined locally by a set of axioms, is other elsewhere where a different set holds sway.  Governing, holding sway, banging around are what we find ourselves up against.  We long for the final Infinite Thing beyond it all.   And we have fallen into Gnosticism.  The minor god of this place must be somehow overcome in our spirit.  We long for the God beyond all these gods.  We yearn for a pure Mathematics behind its many types.  We are in anguish trying to find a place where the Unlimited reigns.  Where we are not oppressed by just one set of constants constantly one.

 

It is ontologically possible that even the ontological forms that constrain us are different elsewhere.  Here we find ourselves in a subject-predicate world; we yield to the Canon that dictates how the elementary logical things unite, what ties to what in quantification, whither and whence reason flows.  This is the ineffable thing that Wittgenstein finally dared to mystically speak.  But perhaps a world or unworld could exist where it is all different.  We cannot think it now.  Nor speak it.  Things might be terribly other.

 

Here is a well-formed expression for logic:   \existsx(P(x) \wedge\forally (P(y) \rightarrow (x = y)))  .

It could be said that there is an ontological Canon that dictated just how those symbols fit together.  It is the Canon, if you will, that prevents us writing:

y \existsx(P(\existsx) \rightarrow) \wedge\forally (P(y) \rightarrow (x\wedge\forall y)) P)(x(P))  which is not well-formed and is clearly nonsense.  Or don't you believe is such a constraining Canon?  Was Wittgenstein right in saying that it is there but it is ineffable?  For us, yes.  Though I just did say it right nicely.

 

 

 

4507  Here I'm going to ask you to use your imagination.  It is all because Blogger so far has refused to transcribe logical symbols into my posting.  Think back to a book of logic you perused.  Take one of those dimly remembered long logical expressions you saw and place it right here _____________.  Now take that same expression and scramble the symbols around and place it right here __________.  Clearly the second one is sheer nonsense.  But Why?  What constrains us to put the symbols in a certain order?  Let's say that it is the Canon of Logical Form that governs our place in Being.  Elsewhere it might be a different constraint, a different Canon.  Aber:  7. Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muß man schweigen.  (What man cannot speak about, man must pass over in silence.)  We are here at the limits of human thought.

 

For those of you who are interested "schweigen" is related to the words: silence, sultry, swelter, serenus sol and selene (the moon), maybe swanz the wagging tail.  What are we to make of all that?

 

 

 

4508  A few days ago I described another's writing as being typically wrong-headed in a continental sort of way about ontology; I suppose I should explain myself.  I am a modern, Anglo-American thinker when philosophy comes.  I am over-engrossed by the question of the grounding of logic.  Those on the continent, for the most part, see no point in the question.  They are over-indulging of the social and, therefore, the political.  They fancy themselves economic theorists.  I see no hope for philosophy in that.  I am endangered by thickheadedness in the matter I stir.  They are on the verge of falling in with les flaneurs.  They are edgy.

 

By the grounding of logic I am referring to those entities that are used to build a logic.  I am referring to logical form itself and to classes and sets.  To a grounding of number and arithmetic.  To the quantifiers of some, all, and none.  To the nexus of implication and explication.  All those little irreducible pieces of logic by means of which we describe our world.  The continentals so often dismiss all that a human invention and less than what philosophy should be tending to.  We see the world differently.  Logic cannot be dismissed as Parmenidean.  The entities of logic are not human.  They are the form of reality.  Or do you disagree?

 

Also, those who dismiss universals and the bare particular as mere "thought" or concepts, and then dismiss thought and concepts as not real, are, I insist, going down a dead-end road into misty aphasia.  But insisting is worthless.  The point is that finally all these questions in continental thought vanish and nothing is spoken at all.  It is pointless to ask one of them about these matters, because your question will go unanswered.  And when I have knocked on their door no one was at home.  They were probably away at a conference, at a restaurant, walking the lonely streets.  Indeed, those mere momentary concepts are nothing but mere momentary concepts, nothing to build a philosophy, much less a world on.

 

Next I will take on my Anglo-American compatriots.  They are the masters of boredom, and they magically seem to be proud of it.  We deal in our own way with our anxiety before the great Dialectic of Being.

 

 

 

4509  What are the objects of today's "object-oriented ontology"?  It's hard to say, it's very hard.  I don't know if that's because I haven't found enough to read or because not enough has been given.  I'll leave it at that.  instead, I'll give you what I think an object is. 

 

Consider these things as objects: his smile, his questioning look, his stylish way of dressing up.  Surely those are superb objects of contemplation.  Let's also consider his lying beside his friend at night, the closeness.  Immense objects all.

 

I have no doubt but that as you read that you imagined a certain scene.  The images you conjured up were different from mine, but somehow still the same.  You and I both saw, in our attending to that, instances of the same forms.  And that, my friend, is an object.

Some will object that those "objects" are mere appearances of the real underlying objects.  I have no idea what that could be.  The objection is meaningless. 

 

There is one doctrine of the OOO people that I agree with: there are no relations between objects.  There are relations only between the bare particulars that are "in" objects. Consider A lying close to B.  That is a fact, an object.  A exists; B exists; and lying close exists.  Lying close is a relation.  The fact/object of A lying close to B also exists but it is an ontologically very different kind of thing, categorically different.  A is one object; B is another; and A lying close to B is a third.  There are no relations between these three objects.  They are separate.  Anthropomorphically speaking, they are independent of each other.

 

There are no relations between objects, only between the bare particulars that are ontological constituents of objects.  To do philosophy you must possess l'esprit subtil et l'esprit geometrique. 

 

 

 

4510  I stare off into space and I conjure up an object.  What shall we say of that object concerning its existence?  For sure, it is there before my mind's eye and it is not nothing.  Did I create it?  I can make no sense of that.  Is it somehow composed out of my mind-stuff or mind-forms? That is to say, Is it made of things that are embedded in my mind?  I see no embedding.  I see no mind-thing for it to be embedded in.  The object hangs in existence before my mind's eye.  Lovely metaphors.  True metaphors.  That other metaphor of production and making is not lovely, but a way of seeing that workers in this technological age could understand.  Technè has been with us for far too long.  The stillness of vision is better.  And conjuring is a ritual calling out to, not a production-act.  The object exists.  It is other than my mind.  Meinong and Reinhardt Grossmann were right.

 

 

 

4511  An author will sometimes, as though abent-mindedly, make us feel the sigh of being, the delicacy of abstract things.  Always after some beginning moments of shuffling around in history he mentions, merely lightly touches on, the desired idea,  That thing is there, but almost not.  And then he usually, for fear of crushing the loved thing, once again tells us a little history, all the while keeping an eye on that thing and slightly letting us know that we might also.  In such academic writings we are with the impending lightness of being.  The wing-buds begin to feel the movement of blood.  The feet quietly long to move on, but we remain silent and passive in the still intellectual breeze.  Analysis must be almost nothing and with a most dilicate touch and it will drive you crazy.

 

I too know the very delicate, a boy's smooth chest where nothing lushious awaits, only simplicity and the pure.  His hair lies so easily on his forehead, light and still - and blood pounds in me as I think of it.  The very light causes desire for the weighty to rise up in me.  My writing, my insistent rhythm, is an attempt to give substance to all that.  To the fine abstractions.  To have the weight of Being.  Lightness and weight structure my images.  The thinly abstract in the full pull of an incessant syntax.  The boy lies heavy on me.  He is both and I am that.

 

 

 

4512  Μήτις, metis, means cunning, but it also means no one.  For us today, it is the infuriating element in a story.  It is the opposite of what happens in the Blues.  No conflicted modern artist could survive its destructive force.  But it is real life.

 

Imagine a young man doing those things a young man does on Saturday night.  Sunday morning comes and he is in church.  Imagine a father doing those things a father must often do just to stay in business.  On Sunday morning he is also there in church with the family he has protected.  Imagine a student who has done those things a student must do to make it around the lack of time.  Sunday morning he sits down with the others in church.  All three have done things that in a most touching story would have led them into spiritual anguish.  Bad angels and good angels have faced off and lean back to watch.

 

But cunning comes to the rescue.  There is in fact no conflict here.  Sunday morning finds our friends at peace with themselves.  Only in art, today in the Blues, do we find anguish, and that, for us, becomes the lush texture of the poetry of life.  We watch from a safe distance.  Cunning takes all that beautiful poignancy from us.  To see our friends sitting there so at peace is maddening.  It is not art.  No course grain.  No raw reality.  It is as though no one is there.

 

Cunning unites the most conflicted in peace.  In philosophy, it is the magic of dialectic.  The wildly sensual and the most refined and abstracted spirit are as one.  There is no show to watch.  Philosophers cannot sing the Blues.  We are all, at times, philosophers.

 

 

 

4513  The byword today is spirituality.  The shunned is the religious.  Surely, that latter, it is thought, is the domain of the patriarchal oppressor.  The former is high, serene intellectualizing.  The idea of God is irreversibly embodied, and the body, the male sexual body, is tyranny.  Spirituality is an escape from the body of the male god.  Spirituality is the freedom of women.  And in that men are freed from themselves.  Spirituality is victory over the Oppressor God.  I, of course, do not write such a thing.

 

Was it some of the Greeks who taught us to see philosophy as such high-mindedness?  Did the Jews follow them in forbidding all images of God and thus taking away the threat of the divine phallus, the master, the body of the body?  Why has such fear and even hatred of the flesh, the sex of God, still prevailed today?  Why have we surpassed them all in our seeing Being as sexless, as free of all imaginings of the Phallus of Being?  Why are we today so damn spiritual?

 

The spiritual is the social.  It is deep concern for one another.  It is thoughtful of the healing call.  It is the interrelating of interrelating without end.  It is denial of one's own power within the matrix.  And it is gentle.  It is the lightness of Being.  The unbearable lightness.  The phallus is gone.  God is dead.

 

 

 

4514  The whole Bible seems to be a clinamen, a swerve, away from the phallic presence.  Of Being, of God.  As does the history of philosophy. 

 

 

 

4515  "The Phallus must be veiled" wrote Jacques Lacan.  Both Howard Eilberg-Schwartz and Theodore Jennings have shown the extensive erotic, even homoerotic, goings-on in the Bible.  It has proven, however, to be too much for the laity.  Likewise, any close reader of Plato knows that the same thing goes on there.  And the same reaction occurs.  The phallus is veiled.  It has no place in the new (state sanctioned) academies and seminaries.  And, though it was the energy that drove the first devotees on to religious-philosophical rapture, it is gone.

 

So today we speak of language, the Word, the semiotic assemblage.  We speak of Being and Time and Alienation.  Of the Withdrawn, the Absent, the Trace.  Please, no strong, overwhelming Presence.  We blush at the thought of the old cultic, erotic God.  We are refined.  We are delicate.  We have yet to get tenure.  We want Freud to forget the penis and concentrate on slips of the tongue.  We are tired of the subconscious and its listing libido.

 

 

 

4516  I'm not going to pretend I know enough about Deleuze or Hume or Freud or even "the realists" to give an intelligent comparison of all that to the ideas I presented in my blog.  I don't have that kind of scholarly ability.  I wish I did, but I am what I am.  I will, instead, say a word about intensity and Eros.  First, it seems to me that we cannot separate erotic intensity from jealousy and anger.  Sex and violence, whether physical or intellectual or spiritual, go together.  We are in a terrible bind.  Such is life.  We deal with it.  We try our best not to hurt ourselves or others.  And we try to understand and feel empathy when we are hurt.  Such is life.  We deal with it.  And we also must accept the fact that violence is pleasurable at times.  Intellectually, the force and cut of analysis is a terrible pleasure.  As for physical violence … well, the Tango and Flaminco are there for all to see.  We are in a terrible bind.  Sex and violence go together.

 

The God of the Bible was a very, very passionate thing - dangerous.  The glory of David and the Son of David is that they seem to have had the power as the ones loved to make that terribleness calm down.  The Phallus must be dealt with.  The dance of lover and beloved is wild and troublesome and its joy is blinding.

 

The philosophical spirit in Plato, ie the form of Socrates, both base and divine, is also not a gentle thing.  Socrates is a very troublesome erotic partner – witness the come-backs and the goings-on in the Symposium.  Socrates was never "nice" and jealousy settled about.  His clean, pure dagger of analysis was deadly.  And in the end they all watched him kill himself.  Strange.  Sex and violence in their many forms lie together.  Philosophy is not a gentleman's game.  Or gentlemen are not so gentle.  Still the beauty can be overwhelming.  And immensely alluring.

 

 

 

4517  "What is real makes you hard" could that be a phrase out of the Scottish Enlightenment?  Formed by the pen of a Freud of the moors.  A psycho analyst who has moored his boat under the shoulder of a windy cliff.  A Moor who has lost his way among boys of the Northern Shadows.  'Ο σκοτος, darkness and gloom and shadow, Scotland.  A most unlikely place for enlightenment.  Nonetheless, there are the Northern Lights there, I suppose, that might have rolled through their brains at night.  Something woke them up.  I suspect it was no more than a nighttime erection.  Dreams come.  The cold stiffens one's resolve.  Thoughts follow.  The world revolves on its axis. The tongue slips.

 

The Empiricists gave us the Fiery Sensa.  Intense retention among the elect.   From the Ιερον Οστεον the fire flows as from a dusky volcano out onto the wet rocks of night.  The blowing φαλλος. The land of dreams.  The true home of Freud.  Ενεργης   εν οργη   

 

 

 

4518  There is a big fight going on today over the claims of some of those who would be philosophers in cognitive science.  With the words "would be" I have already tipped my hand, but I will, nonetheless, try to state the differences clearly.  About the time of Des Cartes and Galileo, some tried to explain the workings of the physical world without appeal to anything other than the physical.  No spirits or demons or soul things could enter into the new science.  The physical world was closed to the workings of such things.  The mental and the physical were separate substances.  And there's the rub.  Ever since then there are those who literally hate that division.  Today the push is on to overcome it.  But how?

 

In the old science, the one after Des Cartes, the physical world and the mental world were there to be examined up close.  They were each seen in their proper being.  We saw directly.  The mind, as it were, hovered over the world and looked down on it.  Its looking did not change anything or have any effect.  We saw as God sees, but only less so.  Still, the division grated on our sensibilities.  We knew we were in the world, a part of it.  As a distant, disembodied mind, we languished.  So we jumped down into the fray.

 

Now the new science does not make the division between mind and matter.  Rather, it makes both mind and matter, and any causation between them, be metaphors for a something that is beyond both.  It is a momism monism.  But the One-Big-Thing is unreachable.  We wallow and cuddle voluptuously in metaphor.  Nothing is true and nothing is false, because true and false are also metaphors for … for that big unknowable something beyond.  Unfortunately, an "unknowable something beyond" is also a metaphor and there you are with your intellectual pants down around your disappearing ankles. 

 

We have achieved the unity of mind and matter by denying the reality of both and falling into the swamp of tropes and synecdoches.  We sag and lurch about in half knowing.  We are the poets of swamp gas. 

 

 

 

4519  All three, Des Cartes, Leibniz and Spinoza, completed their philosophy with the Ontological Argument of Anselm.  It was the heady apogee of their work.  'Ο τελος οργης.  Today, because of that old lady Kant, their followers are afraid to touch it.  He wagged a critical finger and spoke of madness waiting for anyone who attempted that final move.  Now we have philosophers that are attempting eternal foreplay without orgasm.  Madness has been avoided.  And these followers are trying to be happy with that.

 

 

 

4520  I write of God, but I abhor and ridicule monism as a philosophy.  I write of God continually, but I will have nothing to do with either the old Absolute or the New.  I sing of God, but I insist on a final division.  It seems that I have worked against my devotion in my philosophy.  But I haven't.  My theology is obviously, though, not a strict or absolute monotheism.  I suppose it is a Trinitarianism, as would befit someone who grew up in the hunger of the Spirit on the Iowa prairie.  The passion has been too great for a One by itself.  The doubling was necessary.  The need was immense.  The force was devastating.  The ruins lie about in the ghostly winds of evening. 

 

Sartre insisted that Being and consciousness (le nèant) could never be one and thus be God.  That ultimate division, that ultimate impossibility, was, for him, the absence of God.  I live that same spiritual absurdity and, along with Kierkegaard, I call it God.  It is, as Sartre said, a useless passion.  I write of that passion incessantly and I call it love and the Boy.  Such is God.  Such is the Night of Power.  Such is the strangeness of philosophical argument.  We love differently.

 

 

 

4521  Capitalists and communists both seem to be in love with process and development.  The question, as I see it, is not which but how to protect man from the excesses of man.  Given that there is a mighty and violent spirit in us driving us on, how do we not succumb to our own overbearing force?  Surprisingly, I am an optimist about this.  Yes, we are violent and our emotions reach the sky and the depths, but our intellect is great.  It’s a race of man against himself.  He will win, I have no doubt.  Just what defines winning, though, is a mystery.  I think it is excessive love.  Oh my!

 

Kierkegaard and Plato both have wonderful stories of the horses that drive the chariots of life.  For Kierkegaard, there are two breeds of horses.  The first is an ordinary horse, a work horse.  It is rather slow and sluggardly and we have to use the whip to get it going.  The second, the finer breed, is anything but slow and sluggardly, it is over-eager, it is biting at the bit to get going, and the whip must be used to calm it down, to bring it into line, to give precision.  Of which breed are the horses that drive man?  Man is driven by the finer kind.  I have no doubt.  It's a wild ride.  The charioteer needs all the energy he can muster. 

 

Plato, magically, was right when he said that the vision that drives the horses on is Beauty.  That is the impulse.  That is the spirit.  That is the cause of all the violence in us.  Not mere indigestion, as Nietzsche thought, I suspect, before he thought better in his own case.  And so we don't talk about it.  The Boy glances about as though unaware.

 

 

 

4522  Whitehead distinguishes between the event and its character.  The latter he called object.  That makes the former the particular that the object ingresses into.  I have said that the particular exemplifies the universal, but his way of saying the same thing in reverse is not different.  I think it is important that we keep our philosophical eye on both event and object.  The former passes never to be seen again, the latter remains and repeats into the disappearing many.  The problem, in our philosophizing, comes when we elevate either object or event, the one over the other.  They both exist and they are categorically different.  The merest particular, so ephemeral, is of Being, just as much as is the object, the universal.  And the Ingressing is ontologically there.  Object, event, ingression and the fact that is their complex unity are all ontologically striking.  The subtle difference between them must be maintained in our thinking.  Or our philosophy collapses into confusion.

 

 

 

4523  An object has certain properties; sometimes we perceive that it has them; sometimes we sense them.  Perception and sensing are different, but the property may be the same.  For example, his hair may be soft and brown.  I may perceive that it is that.  Or the softness and the color may be intimately present in my senses.  The property is one; we approach it with different acts of mind.  Another example, his hair was recently cut.  That is something I cannot sense, but I can surmise it from an act of memory.  I know it by an act of mind.  It is a property just as brown and soft are, but it is known differently. 

 

Likewise, that this in my hand is hair is also know directly by an act of mind.  The property of being hair is not reducible to any set of sensa; it is a simple property and it is known as exemplified by a that.  Therefore, the form of hair, cut recently, brown and soft are all properties known.  None of them is reducible to any of the others.  They are simple forms.  They are known by different acts of the mind.  None is more real than any of the others.  All are just there to be known equally.  A bare particular exemplifies many different properties, only some of which are known by sensing. 

 

 

 

4524  I have been doing philosophy for many years.  It has always been intense.  And I have always thought that the things of my philosophy are things that I directly see.  For the most part they have always been there before my mind's eye.  Time has not really increased my ability to see.  I remember that I once listened to a lecture on relativity given by a physicist, who said that as time passed it became much easier for him to imagine the higher dimensions.  Perhaps the same thing could happen in doing the kind of ontology that I do.  It does seem to me though that I was seeing those things at the beginning.  Maybe that's normal for such a philosopher as I.  It makes no difference, though, for what I have to say.  Let's say that I am acquainted with the things of my ontology.  Things such as universals, bare particulars, actuality, facts, connectors and all the other rarified pieces of Being.  Let's say that I hold the Principle of Acquaintance.  Whatever you call it, it is disputable.  I suspect that most, even most philosophers, would say that I have become or have always been no more than good at deceiving myself.  A good friend of mine thinks that and when I bring up the subject, even accidentally, he gets downright angry with me.  What to do?  I hold the beliefs I do because, to my mind, I see these things directly.  That seems to be rock- bottom.  We think differently.

 

 

 

4525  Imagine this guy in bed and the alarm goes off.  He pushes the bar, it stops and he …. he either gets up or he turns over and goes back to sleep.  So here we are, this guy, Jack, has taken on the property of getting up … or … of turning over and falling asleep again.  Two Jacks (if you so kindly will); one gets up; one turns over.  If either of those Jacks is the one in your world, then the state of affairs that he is has, ontologically, taken on actuality, and the "other" Jack of a different state of affairs is now pervaded by potentiality.  Maybe in another world not yours the situation is reversed.  Let's, for the fun of it, assume that both worlds exist.  Now what?  Well, what happens now is that most readers will moan thinking I am going to lead them once more into the multiverse.  Maybe.

 

We are dealing with states of affairs.  It is that that is pervaded by actuality or potentiality and not the object or the property.  And Actuality and Potentiality are things.  Now consider this: I am outside the house and it is a true fact that Jack is up there in his room.  And a bird is up on the roof and he thinks about the true fact that Jack is down there in his room.  Jack is up there in his room and Jack is down there in his room.  Both are actual and bothe are only potential.  Contrary states of affairs and both obtain.  But not in one act of looking.

 

Or maybe in yours and mine, because we have been considering this ontological puzzle, they do exist together.  Ontology is magic.

 

There, of course, will say that getting up and turning over are not monadic properties, but dyadic relations.  That each is relative to a point of view or angle of perspective.  Nonsense, they are monadic and they are of the particular that is Jack.  That is the kind of relation-ism that is so much out and about today.  This isn't the multiverse; it is this world right here.  I actually once read someone say that Red is a relation, ie. something is red relative to something else.  Oh my!  Red is not a relation.  To think it is is as bad as thinking it is an adverb – to see something redly.  That's also out there.

 

 

 

4526  An occurrence, an event, a happening – what is such a thing?  Every event has a character.  "Objects are elements in nature which do not pass. … In fact the character of an event is nothing but the objects which are ingredient in it."  - Whitehead.

 

Therefore, to get at just what the eventness of an event is we simply have to subtract or abstract away the objects in it.  Snow is falling on the green grass.  Snow and falling and green and grass and the relation "on" are all objects, permanent things, things that do not pass.  And if we take all that away we have the purity of the occurrence.  The objects of snow and falling and all the rest ingress into the simplicity of the occurrence, the event.

 

It is the magical moment in philosophy when the one contemplating such things is able to see each ontological piece stand in isolation from all the others.  When the tie holding it all together is broken and the Things appear.  And it is then that we must learn to speak few words.  Nothing can be explained or analyzed down any farther.  Name the things and let them be there before your mind's eye.  It's finished.

 

 

 

4527  Continuing on from two postings ago, Does Jack get up or does he turn over and go back to sleep?  Or both?  Make a detour here to consider Richard Feynman's Sum-over-paths and then come back.  Now then, from his position of being so finely awakened, does Jack reach the end of the day ahead by doing all possible things?  In other words, do the infinite worlds of infinite possibilities all reach actuality?  If so, how do we find our way about?  I suppose they do, but …. .  Yes, we can contemplate such things; it is the same as a medieval monk contemplating the infinity of God.  You can do it rather easily, but it will drive you crazy and the tedium is great. Still, I have no doubt that such infinite things exist, even God and the infinite worlds.  It's my pleasure.  And we will traverse all of it in the infinite time ahead of us.  As Parmenides said, Being is, non-being is not.  And then all things return.

 

 

 

4528  I'm sitting here looking at my computer screen.  Well, yes, of course.  There are those who insist that I am, in fact, not, but that I am a consciousness looking at a mental image of a computer screen.  That I am looking at only an intentional object and not the original.  That between me and the original there is a third, a deputy, an intermediary.  That the original is totally not here, out of sight, withdrawn, gone.  Bham! I'm alone with ghosts.

 

It seems, according to that philosophy, that even though I am not looking at the original screen but only at an intentional object, the intentional object is "looking" at the original.  At least there is some sort of nexus between the original and that copy.  Maybe a causal nexus.  There's a problem with this philosophy.

 

I am not just looking at the intentional object.  Rather I am that intentional thing that looks, thus I am looking.  It is not intermediary between me and it.  I am that.  Some things are intentional by nature.  We call them ideas.  There is, at times, the idea that the screen has gone blank.  I don't merely look at the idea in order to indirectly see the fact that the screen is blank.  I am the idea that it is blank.  And I, as idea, directly intend the fact of the screen being blank.  There are no intentional objects between me and the world.  I see the world directly, because that is what I as an intentional thing, an idea, do.

 

 

 

4529  What does it mean, in ontology, to say that something is real?  I suppose we could say that it means that it exists independent of or separate from mind.  It is not "created" by mind.  It is there even if no mind is aware of it.  And on and on, all the definitions are somewhat anthropomorphic and I think they must be.  Take an example: it seems there is a bird flying around in my bathroom; it must have gotten in through the tattered screen.  On inspection, I see it isn't a bird but that the belt has come off the fan and it's flopping around.  The fact of a bird trying to get out wasn't real.  Another example: a Phoenix is rising out of the ashes of my burned love letters.  Beautiful, but not real.  Or this one: the world needs more philosophers.  Hardly.  These are all facts that are not real; nonetheless, they are still facts.  Do they depend on mind?  It may very well be true that unless a mind was there thinking of them that they wouldn't have been there either.  Still, the mind, because of that, cannot be said to have created them.  It's just that they came together.

 

Some facts are real and others aren't.  They could have been real in another world or another place or time or whatever, but just not here.  Therefore, they are potential.  I think a better word than real, for philosophy, is actual.  The word "real" seems to me to belong to the everyday world and not to ontology.  Thus the division for philosophy is between actual and potential.  And the ontology I want to give is that Actuality and Potentiality are things that facts "have".  That sounds more traditional.  Some facts are actual and some are potential.  Not always or everywhere but only insofar as facts are there at all.  Not even potential facts are mind-created.  Facts exist.  And actuality and potentiality pervade them.  It has nothing to do with mind.  Or even the real in an everyday sense.

 

 

 

4530  Some phenomenologists see the world divided between real objects and intentional objects, the la