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The universe      (which others call the Library)       is composed of an indefinite,

perhaps  infinite number  of hexagonal galleries.   Self-organize !    O  beehive,

o basalt, o benard cell !   Do yr pious service to six !   All things flow according 

to    the          whims                      of                  the          Great        Magnet 

( speaking of which, you ought try  :  resonate !   align yr spin !     look inside! )

My Existence Is Rather Unlikely,    thinks      Claude        Shannon        browsing

hexagonal stacks,         thumbing volumes,              contemplating the variation

of the 23 letters.   We ... want ... information!  Hidden as statistical unlikelyhoods

throughout        the       universe     (Library)  :  maybe   chock   full   of   honey,

or some devil's tower, or a pan of oil.                      We all live in a little Village.  

Stairs up,                                                                                     stairs down.  

And if your labrinyth recurs,       cycles back eternally,         will Eris in her terror

whisper    in    your    ear?   Speak six?   Lead you down spiral steps, the sound

of your shoes echoing back again, return of the same, books all the way down?

My   solitude  is   cheered   by                                      that    elegant     hope.

I wanted only to try to live in accord with

the promptings which came from my true self.

Why was that so very difficult?

                                                                           Hermann Hesse

Become who you are.

                                                                           Friedrich Nietzsche 


Psychoanalytic Dispatches

I: The Ghost of Freud



Modern psychology had to abandon Freud's metapsychology (the sociological & political import of his late work) because, at base, it constituted a critique of Enlightenment values.  Psychology could not develop itself into a "proper science" while it continued this Freud's final line of inquiry regarding the nature of civilization.  Instead, psychology reduced itself (its scope and approach) to a functional or medical apparatus: diagnose & cure.  This transition was impossible while the field still recognized Freud's metapsychological thesis: that civilization itself requires a repression of individual instincts before it can proceed.  If we are all sick and necessarily so, psychology cannot justify its paradigm of illness & remedy.  And so it exorcized its demons and designated these problems the work of philosophy, refashioning itself as a "real" science with a desperate obsessiveness that reveals its base insecurities with every insistance at its legitimacy.  And in the process, psychology sold out: it dropped the serious (and difficult) work it could have done in exchange for an academic and societal status that is always necessarily in danger of disintegrating. 


This process, in a beautifully ironic turn, requires the field to repress the memory of Freud, at once paying brief lip-service ("Of course Freud was the father of psychology") and simultaneously attempting to aggressively humiliate him with a parade of his worst ideas.  We are right to be critical of Freud, but the consistency, tone, and attitude with which he is attacked in modern academic departments might be driven by more interesting motives: an embarrassment that where the father sought and may have failed, the children fear to go.  All this, of course, assumes that he is still read and not simply rejected through a hereditary line of graduate seminar Powerpoint slides.




The House of Asterion


extinction / megafauna







Fig. 1: homo economicus has an Existential Moment



, rethinks   the beggin question   "rational agent"

, or maybe,  what is pleasure?  what is pain?

 lightning calculations in quantum clouds

      slightly    off.     Chaos   always

          riding     fiat      currency

              :  a conventional



ygg's wiki, life and ever his mind seem to careen around big gravities;

but when he looks closely, he finds nothing at the center: substantial absences abound.

and so the task this hour appears - to describe the method of approach,

                                        THE ORBIT

by means of its own playful and careening illogic: by spinning spirals,

weaving loose approximations around the impossible locus of being,

sketching dotted lines that surround a fleeting ghost: a definition.


lorenz has checked in, bags sent upstairs at luxurious casino &

            hotel : babel

built on no foundation. and words spill out

of tower windows, designated sections of non-tower that

let out sound: words meant to orbit specters, ghosts that haunt

this architecture [called concepts] that most the clientelle

sight late night and gossip over at the bar.  lorenz, asleep or mad

sketches jumbles of data onto graph paper, dropping two

great pools of nothing into his model, his two

eyes staring down at this newfound mirror: a mask!

ever orbiting the absence, lifelong in worship

to blank space... sacred ceremonies spring up within,

one man's absent-minded mythology taking the form of his times:

eyes of the cheshire cat, ever coming or going or

both or neither, fragile existence of nothinghood under his

pencil, while he sits poolside drinking mint julep, mind drifting

like fog from weather systems on to journalism, feeling it

coming on strong now: who am i?   (turned loose inside)

chasing after the shadow of some authorhood and gripping

a rolling stone and thinking deep on one of sgt. pepper's sutras:


"...i'm fixing a hole where the rain gets

& stops my mind from wandering

where it will go...."


a communications primer [1953]



"...then in certain cases and for irresponsible men it may be that non-existent things can be described more easily and with less responsibility in words than the existent, and therefore the reverse applies for pious and scholarly historians: for nothing destroys description so much as words, and yet there is nothing more necessary than to place before the eyes of men certain things the existence of which is neither provable nor probable, but which, for this very reason, pious and scholarly men treat to a certain extent as existent in order that they may be led a step further towards their being and their becoming."



   - Albertus Secundus, or

            Hermann Hesse or,

                Joseph Knecht, or


                        M A G I S T E R  L U D I

                          (or, Das Glasperlenspiel)



The Glass Bead Game ( which others call the Library ) is composed of an indefinite and perhaps infinite number of signs.  One sign: It is 1895. Hesse is in Tübingen, and throws a stone into the Neckar, dreaming: Meaning is decending into us from we know not whence. As it breaks the surface of the water, great concentric rings ripple outward, placing our concept of time into motion-picture.  He thinks, We fools! and laughs sadly, already wrestling with the ghosts of this place [1 2 3].  Simulatenously and nearby, The Anti-Christ is first being published seven years after its author declared: "...one need only say the words 'Tubingen Monastary' to understand what German philosophy really is - a disguised theology."  The man himself is... ill disposed, subject alternatively to syphilis/dementia/cancer, though Bataille & I prefer the romance of his thoughts overcoming his capacity to express them.  As the old man affirms the entropy reclaiming his body, I am years away on a beach in California, pointing my camera at a world in motion and trying to place it feebly within my comprehension. 


With a click: the shutter opens, my eyes close. 


I am three years ago, watching a mother and her child float the Neckar and watching great ripples pour out from their Stocherkahn, tearful for poor and pretty humankind, feeling deep and terrible love for time and her victims.  This too shall pass.  My head throbs in horror and despair; I am Hesse, 15 years old suffering Nietzsche's migraines in Maulbronn and buying a revolver, scribbling a note that cannot express what prompts it.  All is lost to the flow, and ever the Neckar flows forth...


Long ago the Ephesian speaks, and that sign strikes the water; centuries later, its ripples crash our shores.


In sequence: the man with the mustache collapses before the horse, dies eleven years later signing letters Dionysus; Hesse calms, begins his apprenticeship at a bookstore; slowly the pain eases as the river flows forward.  I breathe deep, listening to the water and scribbling a new note: "So much decay, so much thriving."  I hear these words reverberate, recurring eternally, strumming the deep strings of this Bead Game which cannot be articulated but only played, and by way of lazy orbit: there is resonance in these waves, amplifying a deep gravity which we feel only once as we careen past, screaming and burning out: my life in amor fati.  A gasp, amazed, and gone.


With a click: the shutter closes, my eyes open. 


A gift!




Leary at Folsom

and the rest of the

Timothy Leary Archive



DIAGRAMS     ONE     &    TWO



"Multiplicity is the inseperable manifestation, essential transformation and constant symptom of unity.  Multiplicity is the affirmation of unity; becoming is the affirmation of being.  The affirmation of becoming is itself being, the affirmation of multiplicity is itself one.  Multiple affirmation is the way in which the one affirms itself.  'The one is the many, unity is multiplicity.'  And indeed, how would multiplicity come forth from unity and how would it continue to come forth from it after an eternity of time if unity was not actually affirmed in multiplicity?  ... Return is the being of that which becomes.  Return is the being of becoming itself, the being which is affirmed in becoming.  The eternal return as law of becoming, as justice and as being."



                   { gilles deleuze, nietzsche & philosophy }





            - the laughter of heraclitus -



tears and laughter within the human comedy hold a special bond: weeping slips easily into hysteria, deep joy brings sobs of elation or despair.  that heraclitus is called the weeping philosopher seems an unkind evaluation in history's part. perhaps the old man suffered melancholia, as we're told... and grappling with flux is unsure ground.  [dukkha] .  but one cannot help but imagine Eris seducing him even as she haunted him, calling up some new sound from his throat:


ἐκ τῶν διαφερόντων καλλίστην ἁρμονίαν

ek tōn diapherontōn kallistēn harmonian

out of discord comes the fairest harmony.


this question of resolving being and becoming (how the one is ever many) the whole experience of plurality finds at its center: return.  no statistical or probabilistic recurrance, but the multiple sense of a single throw of the dice.  return affirms life immediately.  nietzsche's whole project was to shape dionysus into zarathustra: to create a final yes or overman.  heraclitus knew that flux created a kind of harmony, and felt the beauty of that experience.  he laughed, i say!  and weeped and danced and fought deeply with this awful and miraculous affair, and i imagine him like this, wrestling to grasp the strange consequences of such absurdity for human life.  within his tears were love for this great pain and elation, a sacrament within this lifelong bacchanalia: prayer throes.






the sustainability bifurcation



consider the gradient of equilibria possible given nature's tendency toward greater stability (lower energy, eris supreme):

equations correlated (contingent upon) nondiscrete scenarios of energy production that will fuel our own daisyworld:

all along the curve, there are relative stabilities (free energy supplying degrees of suspended entropy):

we entertain a smooth curve, a sliding point of hypothetical civilization riding the function of energy input:

she doesn't work that way:

chaos delights in the details, and a biosphere is nothing if not variables:

a few: whole ecologies, economic scaffolding, possible phenotypes of post-humanity:

the noosphere herself rides that wave, and she bucks like none other, outliers abound:

self-amplification within the system suggests more discreet attractors of sustainable living:

let's say two: high / low, and we're riding down the back end of a strange and beautiful parabola:

leaving its toys behind for scrap metal, mythologies, shelter and awe:

back to daily chores, more healthy and tired and wary of reason.





ygg stretches branches wide to new techno-poetic media




The Importance of Villains

     why I choose to fear the CERN collider



just imagine it.  particles you'll never see, fired through massive, restricted underground tunnels by foreign scientists in white lab coats for reasons beyond your comprehension.

amazing.  now that's what i call a villain.

as part of an ongoing experiment, i have been liberally assigning elements of my experience with radical value judgments, partially to render such evaluations arbitrary (guerrilla daydream), and also just to entertain myself.  this private project - a few years running - has a tendency towards the grandiose... filling in the outline of strangers with weird colors, a sort of rolling daily paint-by-number on subways or in coffee shops.  i give the faceless some quick character, allow them to be a butcher/spy/genius/druggie/saint for a few moments as they flitter through my life.

i like to think of it as a gift to them.

imagine my delight, years ago, when i discovered the LHC.  sound it out.  Large...  Hadron (?!?!)... Collider.  yes, there it is.  the hidden malice.  long corridors, brightly colored i-beams, the unmistakable barrel of a gun... suddenly, with horror, some giddy paranoia, and a swift leap of the imagination:



indeed... the empire never ended.  the bastards... they've infiltrated earth, our home. 

join this karass.  join the resistance.




....and more?!?!









charles said knock you out!







What the Wiki is Going On Here ?!



Thank You! For Taking My Wallet


              - an open prayer to Eris -



O Great Goddess! 

Many your forms, and each is glorious! I bow to you today: your Discordia runs deep, and permeates this world.  Hail Eris! 

I bow to you, who graced my pocket with your holy Chao!  I bow to you, Liberator of leather, plastic and paper! 

You have done me great service:

Liberated, Pennsylvania Driving Priveledges!  Amen!

Liberated, Social Security Card!  Amen!

Liberated, Debit Credit!  Amen!

Liberated Petty Cash!  Ye!  Ye!

And I bow again, o Godess!  The greatest gift of all: In giving my wallet to streets of Palo Alto, you offer an Apple of Discord, thrown squarely at my own divine brain: a proper pink laser of your love and chaos.  SMACK!

I am not Andrew Halley, Organ Donor!

I am not First Aid Trained!

I am not A Preferred Customer!

I am not Getting One Free When I Buy Ten!

I am not A Number!

I am No One!

Graces, Eris of Discord, for your blessings today!  I bow to you!

Hail Eris!  Amen!  Amen!



personalizing mysticism



some find ourselves in the bizarre and delightful circumstance of being enamored, horrified, and (ultimately) overwhelmed with our lives.  the scenes which unfold around us are exceptional, not by their own right (they are ordinary) but by our process of experience.  we proceed through the 'ordinary' with passions flaring, screaming love and hatred and goddamnit 'alive!'.  this marks the participation we undertake in the living of our lives.  this is our yes.


the yes requires a rhetoric of its own.  no godawful dissection table, explanatory model or mathematical formula.  in fact (pay attention) no lingua franca at all.  resign yourself to a private poem, ongoing and whispered only to yourself on your walk home: let it be your expression at being and living, having said yes to this unlikely pain and elation: give it special form and character: decorate, mythologize, and cast spells around it until it starts to take shape: recognize that it now resembles your own life, a rabid orgasm of olympic feats: bolts thrown, cities burned, pyramids and miracles and lakes of fire.  old testiment shit.  get excited about it.


waking up is always grandiose.


but remember (this is key) to finally relax... shake the tragic flaw and drop the curtains.  laugh, have a drink, realize it's all kinda stupid and pretty because of it.  see if you can let your yes be a calm.  breathe in, breathe out... and drop out.


This Drive Home is a Loud Rush of Vibrating Sacrament


                              (around the world, around the world, around the world)


First, the windows roll down.  The Moment will come later, but its beginning is here.


Winding through hills of Marin, gulping lukewarm coffee [mind like razor] - my work here is finished, cruising past millionaire compounds with sun pouring in: 85F, dialing up Daft Punk priests of vinyl doing their Homework.  The smile creeps in, the volume cranks itself <BOOM BOOM>, and richfolk stare wildeyed at someone actually using the potential their automobile.  Christ, if ya gotta drive, drive like you fuckin mean it.  And I do, accelerate changing lanes onto Richmond bridge, pedal down and flying to my side of the bay >>> there she is! The Great Snake of Fog, cruising cross the city and into the bay, and she always touches down this time of day: into Oakland, into Berkeley, sometimes north, and the temperature of this whirlwind always drops fast.  No stopping now.  Higher vibrations will keep me warm : let the bass excite these electrons composing me : let them quantum leap around : this too shall pass.  Seconds later, I am released, micro-to-microclimate in this strange place of Cali-fornia.


Here Comes The Sun King!


Warmth tears through the car, mind racing screaming laughter to heavy beats, maniac trying to dance in his drivers seat but keep the car on the road.  Traffic ahead : time to improvise.  Offramp to north Berkeley, swing University to San Pablo, I know this place.  I have been here before.  Music BOOM BOOM gets louder (did i do that?!) and The Moment approaches: waiting for green to catch a shortcut right turn, around the world around the world, and




Great Vibrations reverberate the strings of our Universe, and in 1996 I was eleven kissing for the very first time Christina Watson on a playground in Phoenixville while an ocean away, two Frenchmen crafted their masterpiece debut, knowing (they knew) that years later, around the world, their Homework would pump out the open windows of this Audi, setting off a parked car alarm in Berkeley California BEEP BEEP perfectly to BOOM BOOM, Around the World, over and over, Eternally Recurring, Om Gate Gate, Amen: the Holy Moment arrives to the sound of my own laughter, which makes me want to cry seizure dance to









Take your 1, if you will, and place it promptly upon an alter of 0.  Try to experience this 0 below you.  Feel its pull, its absence, its naught.  It is no gravitation, believe me... let us kill the spirit of gravity!  It is a lightness, the lightness of fragmentation, as 1/0 pluralizes your world and you feel ego s h a t  t  e  r    a    p     a     r       t

[nonlocalization error]

"The body is the inscribed surface of events (traced by language and dissolved by ideas),

the locus of a dissociated Self (adopting the illusion of a substantial unity),

and a volume in perpetual disintegration"

- Foucault's Nietzsche, Geneology, History


Pluralism (1/0 to infinity) is naught-driven, and Truth bursts into scattering truths, clambering into our words, our gods, our Selves (sic).  Dis-integration, and perpetual to boot.  Perhaps the greatest hurdle... allowing the plurality full-time access to your programming.  No vacations, no time shares.  Dedication in action, in expression and articulation.  Focus.  Nietzsche's praise of the short peace.  Self-overcoming.

Take up this sign system web, and hold it with your hands.  How does it feel?  Check it out... and maybe, just maybe, try SQUEEZING it a little.  Hmmm.



reporting from yonder bay:



successful transfer of body and possessions across great union. stop.

ubiquitous beauty encountered permeating everywhere, excepting idaho.  stop.

positive IDs: bear, bison, coyote, elk, moose, and dung beetle. stop.

sunburn, blisters, exhaustion, and general elation: affirmative.  stop.

job acquisition underway.  stop.

the tree grows new roots in yerba buena! stop.

life and times forthcoming. 


over (and over) and out.



Application essays for 23andMe position as "science writer"


Cover letter


Synthia Essay


Prince Displays His Semiotica






       OBJECT        >       ICON           >     INDEX        >      SYMBOL      



I - I - I - I - I - I - I - I !!!

 So... you want information??  Okay, then...

You Are The Prisoner!*


"We all live in a little Village" - Patrick McGoohan


The Village (which others call the Library) is a mirror.  Quite literally, psychedelica: mind-manifesting.  And if the Village is a cage, you are Prisoner, GateKeeper, Warden, Judge Jury Executioner.  Imprisonment is the VR you're projecting, from the Pennyfarthing & Umbrella to your very own number: 6!  And if you come to kill your father, remember his power is in his death, and patri-/regi-cide will only fold itself into your ego-I-#1: you will find the Totem screaming echoes of your I, masked as any mirror.  Your lust for individuality [indivisibility/1] left you anything but "a free man".



"Sir, you approve the proceedings?"

"I... note them."


The Empire - the Village - never ended.  Your ascension to the throne cements an ego which will only find its power in death:


1 - 1 = 0


Your real number all along.  And who were you really?  Information distributed within a fractal, a hologram, a sign system recurring itself eternally.


And just as #6, you will find your #1 apes you, a mere icon of your shattered experimental being.  Your mirror-image breaks the mirror itself, renders it deceptive... and the defect is not the mirror, but your own one-derlust.  And as mirror shards hit the ground, you shoot your way out, rockets firing, extraterrestrials exposed... zooming out of the Village, wheeling round and round your 0, singing...


All you need is love!





"...like a music that becomes less and less audible..."







way to da bay






On Reaching Zero, or Breathing In




"Thought runs you."  We are subject to our mental flow, our ego a series of pebbles tumbling along the bed of a vast and mighty river... thought is the torrent surrounding, the baseline flux of our experience: it gives our being substance, allows us the bizarre and wonderful feeling of being human. Thought fertilizes, and we spring up ourselves.


No wonder non-thought is counterintuitive.  Give yerself up to ego-death, throw your body-mind down and inquire, approach, and fantasize zero/death/nought... gosh, ya might lose yrself in the process!  And that might be precisely the point:




and then

one is left to master the thought process, making it

creative through discipline

rather than

reactive through prejudice


Taking up the power it holds over us - breathing into it, as it breathes into us.  Never forgetting that reciprocation.  Approach the nought in reverance of yrself disappearing, the being you depart and the becoming you take up.











feel that?? roots springing up, under-mining yer feet... er, stance?  that, friend, is NATURE, the silly baseline we've been attempting to circumvent for n-generations too long.  reason-worship has a short half life, as our lives feel so goddam passionate ! too emotionally charged to allow the sort of objective god-sight we might masturbate on : an anti-poetics that kills the sexual instinct, which may well be basic (see Freud, Miller, your life). 


does knowledge of sexual display make us cynical ? or creative ? does the experience of death provide a veil ? or clarification ? are these thought experiments worth it ?


try it out : just let your roots grow long and wide.  feel it out : not intellectually or in cerebrum ; but in-being, experientially, actually : see how it tastes.  resolve yourself to a dedicated experimentalism.


can't hurt.  right ?





Steve Reich:


A Tonal Architecture for Thought !



    Thought runs you. Thought, however, gives false info that you are running it,

    that you are the one who controls thought.

    Whereas actually thought is the one which controls each one of us.


            (David Bohm)


Simple structure as base camp : as levels accumulate, ideas multiply : flourish, complicate, procreate : and still the ground remains : repetition (recurrance) prevails, the common space : elaborations unbound into eternal remix, research, reconsideration : music for 18 musicians is hero of 1000 faces : collective / personal : a path of thought-process, discipline of mind, training the brain to untrain : a task barely begun and never finished.



A unique voice of beautiful Modern, and rare... Hail to Grandmaster Reich of Tonal Architecture; Merry King of Unbound Repetition; Laughter of the Abyss! 


thesis intro and outro








Hot Chip says Yes to Eternal Return, appropriately via dancetrack:


"Over and over and over and over and over

like a monkey with a miniature cymbal,

the joy of repetition really is in you."



Your Over-Soul Wants A Body



        "When it breathes through his intellect, it is genius;

        when it breathes through his will, it is virtue;

        when it flows through his affection, it is love."

                                        RW Emerson


    I feel it, and I hope you do too. 

    Something profound in your experimental person, something possible in who you could, can, just might be... a process of becoming you are undergoing, towards no absolute end but only some plural, remixed ego..  Being-play... isn't that what becoming really is?  You experience fractures in your perceived self... begin to reconsider yourself... and there's the fork in your path:

    To congeal into solid & comfortable form?  Or to roll the dice anew each time?

    To feel yourself changing... concluding one process only to let another emerge, to allow multiple (often contradictory) becomings occur within you at once, and to rejoice and not despair in their multiplicity: to philosophize yourself with a Hammer...

    Break down under your own semios, undergo metanoia, die and be born...

    And to call the mind that emerges genius.  To call the action virtue.  The emotion, love.

    That is your Yes and your Calm.


TekeliLi agrees, you gots to re:create.




Feelin' ya Ygg my brother! A most Virtuous righteous Wiki posting. And mobius finds that that lovin' feeling allows itself to


most revealin'


we gets silent &

go to Zero

We let that ego start



yours in wiki love






ygg in depths all sticky surroundish,

hears big megaphones like 'live this!'

insides organs all 'be this way' mmm

maybes a 'noway' pertains

a big No! fr the empire nvr ended

aint no code r law

boy, just idears, puddin on theWall

blah on napkins thoughtful

and big big Kisses.





A Haiku remixing TankYou...:

Begun N Finished Floating:


Thank you, tank, you say

'One knowing you are no One,

Become who you are'




O'er the Tightrope and Through the Woods

John Dewey Tells Me to Have an Experience




Cabin Fever!  Ygg-feet feel stuck in the mud, down with disease and watching Old Man Winter have his laugh at Spring Equinox... muscles atrophied, mind muddled, holed up in this room for multiple eternal recurrances without so much as a Yes!  Conversations resemble tape-recordings of B-movie dialogue, awkward space-filling and "Let's Recap the Plot".  Neurotic loop to say the least, as lethargy makes itself known in non-action, cranky and not-much-fun-to-be-around.  "If you're bored then you're boring."  Indeed, Mr. Danger, but which way out?  Methinks spring cleaning's in order, dust out the Sucli of Mine Cortex.


What's needed, dear friends, is the elbow grease self-discipline of my coal-mining ancestors.  Dewey, in his wisdom, tells us not just to have an experience, but to have an experience: to feel its progression and transformation towards consummation, fulfillment... to activate ourselves in it, undertake the experience, and thereby engage our creative role in its being & becoming.  The map/theory should transform the territory/reality, if it's any good at all.  Otherwise, all talk and no walk!


To live passionately, oft-quoted, is to take up Sisyphus as a model for becoming and undertaking... engaging ourselves in suffering for creation, lest we find ourselves lazing as the Last Man.  Seeing our experiences through: giving them the space and time to breathe and bloom, as an Ygg-seed planted in the March Snow.   And in the participation of creating an experience, in truly having one, the tightrope is walked and the genius roused from herd-slumber.  A sharp slap across the face from Bodhisattva, wake up boy!  No more cerebralizing yr philosophy, but instead enacting it, suffering it and letting it sprout into action-in-the-world: bike rides, listening eyes-locked, laughter in innocence, meaning-play, capture the flag, living like you mean it, quiet pagan rituals in the morning, stretching body/mind and chewing your food.  Shake the map til the territory tears right through.


That being said (a weight lifted), the author leaves the keyboard, and laughs.






Donny: "These are Nazis, Walter?"

Walter: "No, these men are nihilists, Donny. There's nothing to be afraid of."





    - Ygg is Egg ; Wyrd is Word -




Fimbulvetr-March!  As the End approaches (Ragnarök: regin "gods" or "ruling powers", and rök "fate") we give final glances at our collective experiments... Thor and Odin find death in battle as Eggther plays his harp to the fight, the final band-stand as Titanic sinks into her tomb.  O Bard of the Fall, Egg is laughter and innocence in tragedy, affirmation of life, ye Zarathustra.  Egg is harpsman, remixing the instrument of the heavenly choir... Ygg, world tree, is forever Egg: maybe hardboiled dropping into a toilet.  Georges (Jorge) Bataille (Borges)... "Ygg > Egg" brings chaos to order, breaks metanarrative, and chuckles the joy of Vonnegut in face of war, real tragedy.  We are drawing our heavy revolvers, in a dream which is life, a real which is surreal, a step away from Unity.  And what is Ragnarok in Danish?


Chaos!  Yggdrasil herself, Mother-tree, trembles at the violence of the Gods warring.  And the awful & beautiful irony (the tragic irony, we might even say) is that the Gods knew their fate long before the fight: the moment was caught in eternal return, each event cast into being by its own becoming, one throw of the dice...

Amor Fati

Ragnarok ends in flame, and rebirth... as the Great Cycle of Nataraja, a circle and a returning eternally.  Surtr becomes Phoenix in the act of creation... and we realize, finally, that Ygg was shaking from the roots, its karma-food Wyrd, and that Wyrd=Word, oh gods we shook the tree!  Semios back again, twisting our Axis Mundi into double-helix plurality, into experiment, into toilet-eggs.  Word feeds yr tree, whose branches form the reality tunnel of the Grand Experiment of Your Becoming.  So choose your Word wisely, and your Harp... er, Egg.


-----To Creative Education, As Such, UnTeaching Our Metaprograms-----





"Student" quakes at the label -- lamenting his position in the power dynamics of his process-of-learning -- comes to hate teacher, hate father, knowledge only felt as something done to him... a subjection, an oppression, a suffered affair.  The traditions of his situation, the pressures of expectation, all make-the-grade awful striving for Respect assigned from above.  Teecha!  Teecha!  Dusty bones of what could be Education, decomposed into the sickly sense of information poured into the brain,,, ugh boy, but I know better than this, says yr Hate, resisting yr urge to tear up old books, piss off yr parents, retake, unflate, and recreate!


"Education is a process of living, and not a preparation for future living."  Yee Dewey!  Engage yrself, if you feel the genius within, in a persistent process of experimentation, the most serious play... Relish yr shattered ego, write silly things, dance stupid and string together some protocol for yr life, full of sound and fury, signifying, er, some... thing!  No thing at all perhaps, one idea to play with.  But maybe a weird collage worth seeing to its end, in an endless battle between yr info and its inevitable confusion, a late-night crapshoot of interpeting, integrating, floundering;;; Yr more than capable you know!  Step up (!!uber!!).


Also Sprach the true Teachers, unteaching in the process, contradicting themselves in joyous remix of idea, semios, garbage and uplift.  Ye who break down yr own walls... expose yrself to You, and the Teach You Are Capable Of, and reJoyce in yr imagination-play, broke-down form, blasphemies and spit-trails... Those which compose yr Grand Experiment, good or ill, found or lost, complete/broken, smart/dumb, still picking up the next Weird Try... Yr Blessed, and don't Ye dare Forget It.






"Nietzsche's philosophy cannot be understood without taking his essential pluralism into account.  And, in fact, pluralism (otherwise known as empiricism) is almost indistinguishable from philosophy itself.  Pluralism is the properly philosophical way of thinking, the one invented by philosophy; the only guarantor of freedom in the concrete spirit, the only principle of a violent atheism.  The Gods are dead but they have died from laughing, on hearing one God claim to be the only one, "Is not precisely this godliness, that there are gods but no God?"  And the death of this God, who claimed to be the only one, is itself plural; the death of God is an event with a multiple sense.  This is why Nietzsche does not believe in resounding "great events", but in the silent plurality of senses of each event.  There is no event, no phenomenon, word or thought which does not have a multiple sense.  A thing is sometimes this, sometimes that, sometimes something more complicated - depending on the forces (the gods) which take possession of it.  Hegel wanted to ridicule pluralism, identifying it with a naive consciousness which would be happy to say, "this, that, here, now" - like a child stuttering out its most humble needs.  The pluralist idea that a thing has many senses, the idea that there are many things and one thing can be seen as "this and then that" is philosophy's greatest achievement, the conquest of the true concept, its maturity and not its renunciation or infancy."


Deleuze, Nietzsche and Philosophy




  (Field Study in Simulacra)

CrimeScene: Baltimore Inner Harbor

Perp: BodyWorlds Exhibit

Charge: Hyperreal in the First, Second, and each Subsequent Degree



"Everywhere we live in a universe strangely similar to the original - things are doubled by their own scenario.  But this doubling does not signify, as it did traditionally, the imminence of their death - they are already purged of their death, and better than when they were alive; more cheerful, more authentic, in the light of their model, like the faces in funeral homes." - Jean Baudrillard, Simulacra and Simulation


Agent dispatched to Maryland Science Center with charge to investigate suspected breakdown in distinction of map & territory.  Suspicions aroused in lobby of said museum, as plastic-cast extinct Tyrannosaur specimen loomed over Agent's head, causing flashbacks to Jurassic Park and related childhood horror/awe, further spurring imaginary rampage of bone-monster on hyperreal body "world," plastic jaws crunching bio-plastic exhibitory victims frozen in their death and wiring...  Agent moved on, but with rising suspicions... only to find.. ah... a body of evidence.


Exhibiteers have accumulated, dissected, scrambled, and remixed Homo Sapiens into twisting, unravelling, and exploding sculptures of skin, vein, organ, muscle, and bone... morbid, you say?  Yet the queasy can rest easy: no blood, spit, or bile here.  In fact, the body is entirely dehydrated, sick and glistening liquids drained out and replaced with palletable plastics.  No stink of decay, no flies or maggots... only a dead body, without all that gross dead-bodyness.


Agent is confused.  The bodies... they don't look, well, real.  Colors are too bright.  Flesh is too dry.  It all looks... plastic!  Anatomy class models, made with actual tissue instead of plastic.  The map becomes the territory, and in the process, both lose their roles and come out: Hyperreal.  Agent suffers an out of body experience (!!), overcome with the image of himself witnessing the body, and the body witnessing him, er, his own body, which is losing its moisture, dehydrating, and ultimately freezing into a plastic model itself, plastic made of tissue, or the other way around, and the Agent is dimly aware of screaming behind him, whether organic or plastic in origin he cannot be sure...


Suddenly, the Tyrannosaur bones tear into the exhibit, her cast teeth hungry for bioplastic, and the Agent is consumed into the iron-bar ribcage of the beast, er, model... and consumed into hyperreal, feeling rigor mortis settle in, he settles back into a comfortable position, drops some Ice-9, "grinning horribly, and thumbing my nose at You-Know-Who."







          (facebook cares about you and me)



The ego is the crucial factor here. A man on the scent of the White House is rarely rational. He is more like a beast in heat: a bull elk in the rut, crashing blindly through the timber in a fever for something to fuck. Anything! A cow, a calf, a mare--any flesh and blood beast with a hole in it. The bull elk is a very crafty animal for about fifty weeks of the year; his senses are so sharp that only an artful stalker can get within a thousand yards of him... but when the rut comes on, in the autumn, any geek with the sense to blow an elk-whistle can lure a bull elk right up to his car in ten minutes if he can drive within hearing range.


The dumb bastards lose all control of themselves when the rut comes on. Their eyes glaze over, their ears pack up with hot wax, and their loins get heavy with blood. Anything that sounds like a cow elk in heat will fuse the central nervous system of every bull on the mountain. They will race through the timber like huge cannonballs, trampling small trees and scraping off bloody chunks of their own hair on the unyielding bark of the big ones. They behave like sharks in a feeding frenzy, attacking each other with all the demented violence of human drug dealers gone mad on their own wares.


A career politician finally smelling the White House is not much different from a bull elk in the rut. He will stop at nothing, trashing anything that gets in his way; and anything he can't handle personally he will hire out--or, failing that, make a deal. It is a difficult syndrome for most people to understand, because few of us ever come close to the kind of Ultimate Power and Achievement that the White House represents to a career politician.


(Hunter Thompson, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail 72)



O Happy Display Day!




St Valentinus invites us all to openly and explicitly engage in evolutionary display!  Whether chocolate, poetic, floral or otherwise, sexual signalling permeates the human comedy in a grand web of alternately seductive, amusing, desperate or disgusting plays on display... the information age indeed!  Engaging ourselves in the semiosphere, with the final destination of genetic propogation.  Er, sparing intentions of contraception, of course.


Lonelies hate on the holiday, pointing to its capitalismo... but wait!  What about handicapping?  Sexual display via money is as old as money itself... Veblen knew that long ago, in a synchronicity of economics and evoluationary biology.  And perhaps conspicious consumption is the most American display imaginable.  Still, deep down, that impulse to shock and awe is as universal as a human trait can get.  So remember, dear reader, that though you might consider Valentine's to be shallow and obvious, it is merely one manifestation of a collective activity... the great display!


So participate as you see fit: whether you're wining and dining your chosen mate, chasing some pretty thing, or bitching on hating the holiday... we're all wrapped up in the sexual semiosphere of display, like it or not... so this author recommends liking it, cause hey, it's here to stay.



     Our Discontents



1. Dukkha & Hemlock



“Crito, I owe a cock to Asclepius, will you remember to pay the debt?” - Socrates

"I recognized Socrates and Plato as symptoms of decay, as agents of the dissolution of Greece, as pseudo-Greek, as anti-Greek." - Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols


Gulping his death sentence of Hemlock, Socrates offers up his final intention: that this life is sickness, and Death a cure.  Perhaps he felt himself returning to aether, Form... walk towards the light!  Nietzsche says that Socrates reveals himself in this scene... his last words betray his hatred for life, an ugly beyond the physical.  No affirmation: no tears, and no laughter.  Simply a trapdoor exit from our world of incidental & bastard Form, composed into the reality of our lives.


This echoes a human universal: despair at living, disgust at being.  The centralized notion that something is wrong.  The first of the four Bhuddist noble truths: Life is Suffering.


2.  Neurasthenia



"I take it that no man is educated who has never dallied with the thought of suicide." - William James



Here the response comes: spit it out!  Return your ticket!  Thank you, but no thank you!  If suicide is behavior specific to Homo Sapiens, it deserves rapt attention.  From where does it arise?  Our mind-science offers: pathology of the individual!  Psychology  isolates the mind-being from the external world, takes measurements, diagnoses, condemns/punishes/cures.  Psychiatry is constant power-play (Foucault).  Diagnosis is political.  Inevitably our cultural architecture shapes our treatment of the human, our social science.  The concept of the suicide, then, is shapes by our values and expectations: a natural and genuine horror, followed by a process of reconciling the action with our worldview.  In that reconciliation, interpretation is creative.  We participate in the end product, the moral of the story.  Easier, then, to pinpoint a mental disease, isolated and prepped for treatment, than to examine the individual's experience of life: their social being, their concepts of meaning, their drives and fears.  The alternative approach is dangerous to our collective knowledge, because it implicates society itself as pathological... or, at the very least, using social science to execute judgments along a power hierarchy.


Existentialism coincided/collided with the Industrial Revolution.  The modern era brought with it a new diagnosis: Neurasthenia.  James called it "Americanitis".  What philosophy calls the "modern condition".  Despair at seeing metanarratives collapse... the Enlightenment losing its charm in the battlefields of World War I, the telos of science getting hazier, experience seeming more plural and complex and... well, messy.  Despair at life becomes a collective experience, and the Modern World takes the hemlock herself.


3. Metanoia



"The child is innocence and forgetfulness, a new beginning, a sport, a self-propelled wheel, a first motion, a sacred Yes." - Nietzsche/Zarathustra


The etymology of dukkha brings us to a broader understanding of suffering: it is instability, imbalance, unsure feet.  It is a world in flux.  The modern, existentialist realization is that Truth is plural, Telos is lost, God is dead.  The trauma of the parents' death is recapitulated on a social scale: the mourning of a civilization, flowers for a newly-found unsure existence.  In that pyre, Thanatos overcomes Eros.  Will is lost.


Jung's "metanoia" (repentence) becomes our only way out of the flames, our Phoenix from ashes of lost purpose.  The individual breaks down in an attempt at redemption: the crisis is the painful healing of the wound.  From the loss of Truth, we embrace the existential responsibility of our value-play.  Words, having lost clarity and intention, become experimental.  Our self, ego-being, is shattered into pieces, multifaceted, plastic, malleable


Nietzsche gives us the stages of the human spirit: camel, lion, and finally child.  The camel takes up the burden of circumstance; the lion destroys circumstance; the child recreates, wills circumstance.  Rather than breaking under the weight of our past values, now burning, our task becomes to deconstruct them.  The lion destroys... and finally, in affirmation, the human will engages the world in creation, the stage of the child.  What better toys than plastic language, participatory values, information-play? 


Notes from the Empyrean, Part IV: Yr Brain is God



"A revaluation of all values, this question-mark so black, so huge it casts a shadow over him who sets it up - such a destiny of a task compels one every instant to run out into the sunshine so as to shake off a seriousness grown all too oppressive."

- Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols, or How to Philosophize with a Hammer



It was us all along!  Eden was a garden, the Empyrean right in our backyards.  Mix the Grand Canyon, the orgasm, some Steve Reich, your terror at Death, any and all communication, confusion at dreams, A Love Supreme... bake for 5 hours, let cool in your memories of Mom and Dad, ritualize and serve fresh: Heaven-on-High!  Ideal Form, Empyrean, God!  Who could've guessed we were participating all along?


We come to recognize that Form is actually a flexible, maleable, mind-manifested affair... our own creation, and no less important for that fact.  Indeed... so much MORE important!  Religion becomes jazz-play, a remix of inheritance, 100% participatory and democratic.  Don't despair the death of God!  Rejoice the neurotheological revolution, say Yes! to your existential responsibility!



I should describe this faith as the unification of the self through allegiance to inclusive ideal ends, which imagination presents to us and to which the human will responds as worthy of controlling our desires and choices.” - John Dewey, A Common Faith




Build a God or two... no one else should do it for you.


Notes from the Empyrean, Part III: PsychoSexualAnalogy!




Canto XXXI:

"All there, who reign in safety and in bliss

Ages long past or new, on one sole mark

Their love and vision fix'd.  O trinal beam

Of individual star, that charm'st them thus!

Vouchsafe one glance to gild our storm below."

There's yr pink laser!  Hail VALIS!



This author's been haunted by a certain lunar phenomenon, punctuating all our lives, which beams down, pulls up, and fixes our attention skyward... the eternal ring round the moon!  Seducing young passersby, dragging our gaze towards yonder Empyrean... Love stretching long!  Certainly atmospherical, iciclical, and deep-down mystical... and democratic in its show!  Like wiki!  Like Display!


Which brings us to Beatrice... !

Poor Virgil... so long the faithful guide to Dante's travels, his path ends at Paradiso, where he finds the big No!  The empire never ended!  Paganism cannot consolidate, and it's our loss {back to Nietzsche}//

Beatrice, Dante's dream-girl courtship fantasy, dies at 24... long fore the young man can even express his devotion.  Over Dante, she married a Banker... $$$ > Poetry.  Still, Dante gives her credit enough to guide him into Eternity... Paradiso and finally Empyrean!  The poet, drunk, twists his words among his Young Romance (Beatrice!) and the Awesome Eternal (Divine!).  Where does Woman end and God begin?!  Intoxication, Terror, Ecstacy... the woman, now in archetype, takes on ideal properties:

"Ecce Deus fortior me, qui veniens dominabitur mihu"

"Behold, a deity stronger than I, who coming, shall rule over me."



Suddenly we are rocked, and violently.  Freud, er, Dionysus has his, her turn.  Apollo's pure light is clouded in confusion of the actual woman, as experienced... a perfect circle holding Madonna, lover, whore, child, and stranger.  Dante never knew Beatrice, in the... Biblical Sense.  Instead he provided a perfect Empyrean, confused with the Girl, to contrast the world as we know it.  Bible-sense??  What's to be done of this Formal Woman/Mother wrapped in Aether?!




Notes from the Empyrean, Part II: Rhetorizing Ecstacy


Language is God is dead!  Er, that is to say, language looses herself in the woods, failing in the face of experience.  Dante coughs up his failure in the face of Empyrean, unable to express, er, relate, um... communicate God-in-Being:

"At this point o'erpower'd I fail,

Unequal to my theme; as never bard

Of buskin or of sock hath fail'd before."




O Paradiso!  There comes a point at which, despite ourselves, we find our letters falling from the page.  Rhetorical models high on precise reporting find their typewriters gunked in the slime of Plural truth... our wordwork loses itself in the dogma of its functionality, rhetoric quaking in the face of religious ecstacy... and finally, poetry becomes a medium, here or otherwise, to play with meaning and there, become meaningful.


Nietzsche, a budding philologist, writes in praise of the Dionysian chaotic to balance the Apollonian light & structure.  Dewey offers language as an emergent property of our experience... "Of all affairs, communication is the most wonderful".... or more broadly, "shared experience is the greatest of human goods."  PK Dick offers "It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane."


The primary word here is Experience... a weighty word for Dewey, and not to mention Wolfe: "The kairos!  The experience!



   (ladies n gents, yr driver)


The Furthur Bus becomes a grand mobile experiment in information play, language failing to pinpoint, but achieving approximation in poetics and experiment.  This is the key... admitting the failure of our words to define, and instead relishing in their capacity to create, invent, connect, seduce, reflect, self-reflect, and even destroy themselves. 


Ephemera Esoterica!  The Experienced, and her feeble models... "The map is not the territory?!"




Notes from the Empyrean, Part I: Word(s) of God





The Empyrean - "in or on the fire" - is Dante's final destination (telos?!) for the Divine Comedy.  Composed of aether, filled with light, the place of fire: here resides Platonic Form embodied in God.  Below the empyrean is the Primum Mobile, the First Moved: the Empyrean being the Prime Mover.  Aether, the Fifth Element - quintessence - fills this space of the empyrean.  For Aristotle, aether is idea; it is form.



Here we see Plato, left, pointing to the sky... to form/aether/idea.  Aristotle, right, stresses the importance of the incidental world in his gesture down.  What they share is the complete image: agreement in the binary nature of the universe, the higher and the lower.  Dewey traces the monotheistic revolution to the Greeks:

“Even with Aristotle, a coldly defining theory, called metaphysics, of the traits of Being, becomes a theology, or science of ultimate and eternal reality... It consists of pure forms, self-sufficient, self-enclosed and self-sustaining; self-movement or life at eternal full-tide.” - Experience and Nature, John Dewey


Ortega y Gasset imagines the Crusaders returning from the Middle East, infected with Arabic-Hellenic science:

"Christianity then found itself facing this dilemma: whether to give battle to science by means of the religious intellect, or to consolidate faith with Aristotelian science; whether to destroy the enemy, or to swallow him whole.  The first was impossible.  By itself, Christianity had not been able to make itself sufficiently strong to struggle with that marvelous force, the best intelligence of Greece.  Only the second solution offered a way out; and Albertus Magnus and Saint Thomas adapted Christianity to Greek ideology." -  Man and Crisis, Jose Ortega y Gasset


One echo of this consumption is felt in 1579 as Didacus Valades draws this scala naturae:



God on high, and subsequent levels of being below.  He names it Rhetorica Christiana - the wordwork of Christianity.  Hierarchy is common to both Greek geocentric models of the universe and later Christian natural orders... Darwin's violence was partially in violating the teleological view of nature: man as end.  He knew that man was more of a natural aberration, a mistake, the outlier that spun out of control... and perhaps, as George Carlin once put it, an "evolutionary cul-de-sac."





   This Author, As He Lay Dying, is Born a Reader




"Writing is the destruction of every voice, of every point of origin.  Writing is the neutral, composite, oblique space where our subject slips away, the negative space where all identity is lost, starting with the very identity of the body writing."  - The Death of the Author, Barthes


"Could it be possible?  This old saint has not yet heard in his forest that God is dead! " Also Sprach Zarathustra, Nietzsche


"(1) ID violates the centuries-old ground rules of science by invoking and permitting supernatural causation; (2) the argument of irreducible complexity, central to ID, employs the same flawed and illogical contrived dualism that doomed creation science in the 1980's; and (3) ID's negative attacks on evolution have been refuted by the scientific community." - Republican churchgoer Judge John E. Jones III




Barthes marches in the Death of the Author, and proves his point by stealing Emerson's idea a century earlier.  Nietzsche dances in his grave, having proclaimed the Death of the Big Author through Zarathustra's big woods.  And finally, back in Dover PA, Life Authorship is roundly rejected in our very own justice system.  One dead author, pictured above on his way out, psychedelically expanded his authorship to speak for a generation, only to find their collective death, "the high water mark - that place where the wave finally broke and rolled back."  There seems to be some blood on our hands... "out, damn spot!"


Yet, like any good Phoenix, this death cannon shoots fireworks!  The Birth of the Reader rises up from the flames, the "space on which all the quotations that make up a writing are inscribed without any of them being lost; a text's unity lies not in its origin but in its destination."  No longer is the reader's job an archeological dig into the Author's Intentions... let those Bones of Meaning lie.  Instead, we're handed glue and scissors and a book to play with... Naked Lunch already did it for us!


Finally, we salute the WikiMedium, the great cut-and-paste Authorlessness of our generation.  Collective collage of meaning and intention, self-correcting and self-propelled.  Like genes!  Salty old-tymers damn the Wiki for its plurality and its distribution of the Author... but were the old Authors always right?  Nay, we say!


So bring your favorite Book for None and All, tip your drink to Dr. Thompson, and intelligently design yer Wiki... just don't put your name on it.



Bicyclical Erotica and the Preservation of Normalcy



   (#2 loves his bike)




A psychiatrization of perverse pleasure:  the sexual instinct was isolated as a separate biological and psychical instinct; a clinical analysis was made of all the forms of anomalies by which it could be afflicted; it was assigned a role of normalization or pathologization with respect to all behavior; and finally, a corrective technology was sought for these anomalies.


Corrective techologies abound!  Social engineering at its finest, brings our sex to her knees and down off her pedals... No longer can consenting adults and bicycles enjoy the privacy of their, er, youth hostel room.  Hasn't Bataille been over this?!  "We soon found our bicycles and could offer one another the irritating and theoretically unclean sight of a naked though shod body on a machine.  We pedalled rapidly, without laughing or speaking, peculiarly satisfied with our mutual presences, akid to one another in the common isolation of lewdness, weariness, and absurdity."  Absurd, the word to (parenthasize & marginalize, suspect & reject, persecute & prosecute) patch up that crumbling Truth of Normal.  Save our Sanity!  Diagnose and Dispose!


Americana romances the automotive love-story, the mile high club, the love boat... wet gasoline dreams!  Why not the two-wheelers, those self-propelled wheels cruising for love?  Say Yes! to Plurality!  Love your bike as you see fit!




Before Sunrise


“One day, bigger dragons will come back to this world. For in order that the overman should not lack his dragon, the overdragon that is worthy of him, much hot sunshine must yet glow upon hot jungles. Your wildcats must first turn into tigers, and your poisonous toads into crocodiles; for the good hunter shall have good hunting.”









     Self Deception    


"What the Thinker thinks, the Prover proves." - Robert Anton Wilson

As a primer, an abstract of Trivers:

An evolutionary theory of self-deception-the active misrepresentation of reality to the conscious mind-suggests that there may be multiple sources of self-deception in our own species, with important interactions between them. Self-deception (along with internal conflict and fragmentation) may serve to improve deception of others; this may include denial of ongoing deception, self-inflation, ego-biased social theory, false narratives of intention, and a conscious mind that operates via denial and projection to create a self-serving world. Self-deception may also result from internal representations of the voices of significant others, including parents, and may come from internal genetic conflict, the most important for our species arising from differentially imprinted maternal and paternal genes. Selection also favors suppressing negative phenotypic traits. Finally, a positive form of self-deception may serve to orient the organism favorably toward the future. 


Does it work?  Jeff Kurland and Chris Byrne, of PSU's Anthrology and Mathematics departments (respectively), provide support in game theory:

Self-deception in an Evolutionary Game



Trivers provides the evolutionary model for a reality tunnel: that self-deception could have selection benefits to the organism.  How can we apply this logic to processes of Sexual Selection?  In a conversation between Trivers and Noam Chomsky, we see that self-deception comes into play in both male-male competition (Darwin's Law of Battle) and in courtship (Law of Charm?).


RT: There's an analogy here to individual self-deception. Information is often somewhere in the organism; it's just well-hidden. It's well down in the unconscious. And it's often inaccessible because you build up firewalls against it.

NC: Are there any animal analogs to this?

RT: Well, I don't know. I believe that self-deception has evolved in two situations at least in other creatures, and that it can be studied. I've suggested a way to do it, but so far nobody's done it.

For example, when you make an evaluation of another animal in a combat situation—let's say male/male conflict—the other organism's sense of self-confidence is a relevant factor in your evaluation.

NC: And that's shown by its behavior.

RT: Exactly—through its suppressing signs of fear and not giving anything away, and so forth. So you can imagine selection for overconfidence—

NC: —for showing overconfidence, even if it's not real.

RT: Yes. Likewise in situations of courtship, where females are evaluating males. Again, the organism's sense of self is relevant. We all know that low self-esteem is a sexual romantic turn-off.

So again, you can have selection—without language it seems to me—for biased kinds of information flow within the organism in order to keep up a false front.

NC: And it may be that the animal that's putting up a false front knows it's a false front.

RT: Yes, but it may benefit from not knowing—

NC: —because it's easier.

RT: Easier to do it and perhaps more convincing because you're not giving away evidence.

NC: Secondary signs.

RT: Exactly.


Self-deception, seemingly maladaptive and destructive to their organism's fitness, actually provides cerain benefits in both survival and courtship.





             (Crick's first sketch of the double helix)


Here we see the first moment of humans visualizing the basis of life: self replication.  The double helix, drawn crudely by a biodelic pioneer, polishes our understanding of living forms with a perfectly symmetical, Axis Mundi shape: the twisted ladder.  What begins as a scribble in Crick's notebook transitions into the mapping of our blueprints, the ATGC of our reality.  Programming life forms, muscles and nerves, hormone drives, behaviors and personalities... our four letter alphabet, given the space of time, provides us with the bio/noo/semiosphere of our existence: Body, community, and symbol.


We can flashback to Borges at this point, and take in the Library of Babel, lined in books of randomly (?) assorted characters.  Given infinite space and time, the Library, in its chaotic persistence, creates every thought, idea, book, play, word, or desire of any possible cognition.  And here we doubleback, thinking, oh Christ, the genome is riddled with nonsense, as the Library (which others call the Universe). 





Do they mean anything?  Eventually.





On Dec 19, 2007 9:00 AM, Rich Doyle  wrote:

Uncanny on the "yggdrasil" title - how did you come to choose that title for the page?


Yggdrasil, er, Odin's horse, the World-Tree Great Ash on which He rode the gallows spear-stuck for 9 Days, as per the Law of Nines (Fives?), and thereby gained the Will to Power, along the Axis Mundi, E-sag-ila, Empire State, and prepped the branch for Christ and others: Gaia going-under!  Noospheric metanoia!  Passion is Suffering, Shiva to Phoenix!


Or anyways, suffer > break > create!













Paper for Dr Colapietro:

Sexual Selection and the Deweyian Aesthetic of Language




"Recapitulating the Cycle


Most wonderfully, each of us has recapitulated this sequence of evolution in our own personal lives. We were single-celled creatures when we were conceived and we retraced in our mothers' wombs, the same genetic stages - embryonic fish, embryonic furry animals, finally being born as larval primates.

In our early postnatal years we recapitulated this cycle once again. As amoeboid babies, floating and sucking in our mothers' arms, we had neither the neurology nor musculature to handle gravity. Then as crawling infants we retraced the amphibian stage. As toddlers and running cubs, we recapitulated the mammalian steps. As parroting, mimicking children and as kids hanging out in gangs, we relive the neolithic and hunter-gatherer stages of our species past."


(From Your Brain is God by Timothy Leary)






My Judeo-Christian upbringing taught me that the meaning behind my name was "God's strength." I recently found that its root - the Greek andros - means "of a man." Strength is still implied, in a sort of archetypical male sense: strong, manly, warrior-type. The monotheistic version - God's strength - reflects the adoption of Platonic form into the Christian tradition. The Greek ideal - that of strength and the male - has, in the words of Ortega y Gasset, been "swallowed whole." What emerges is an instrument of the divine: he-who-is-strong-for-God, or he-who-embodies/executes-divine-power.




the apostle/saint crucified on an X-shaped cross having felt himself unworthy of Christ's upright execution.... the Greek island containing a temple to Dionysis... the wildly unpopular colonial governor caught escaping a riot in womens' clothing... the biggest Bahama and social hotspot for the Rat Pack and Jacques Cousteau...


...and my personal favorite, the Power Ranger:



I have a lot to live up to.




Michael Persinger and the God Helmet





On the Afterworldly








The treatment of the mind has been so historical that we should wonder how so many modern theorists are blind to the circumstantial bases for their models. Miller's criticism is a good one. The metaphor of mind-as-computer can certainly be useful; it can also become a dogma, an underlying assumption, which twists and distorts our actual experience of mental phenomena into programs, circuits, and viruses. (Is this what we mean by neuroplasticity?)


The storytelling monkey: the elaboration of our metaphors, perhaps beyond their practical limits, seems to be a common theme of our history. Useful stories are usually ones taken with a grain of salt; their truth is not in their Truth, but in their revelance, their practicality, the application of their wisdoms. William James used the term "the cash value of an idea" - the extent to which our experience backs it up. We can turn to the Greek bandit Procrustes, twisting and stretching his victims to fit the bed that he himself adjusted. Let us be Theseus, and place Procrustes on his very own rack. Our metaphors, once they must be stretched and distorted simply to match our experience... isn't that the primary feature of an idea outliving its usefulness?










If we are to follow Joseph Campbell into a psychanalytics of our mythology, consider Babel.


"The whole world spoke the same language, using the same words. While men were migrating in the east, they came upon a valley in the land of Shinar and settled there. They said to one another, "Come, let us mold bricks and harden them with fire." They used bricks for stone, and bitumen for mortar. Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the sky, and so make a name for ourselves; otherwise we shall be scattered all over the earth" (Genesis 11:1-4)


Essentially, we have the beginning of societal living, the agricultural revolution, and the establishment of permanent cities. Within the scope of our histories, we are witnessing an anthropological revolution. The great cognitive leap, alternatively attributed to: the extension of the human mind into abstract space (psychology); chronological time, first menstrual (Ridley); courtship, signalling and display (Miller). Or perhaps the dawn of language, as many scientists (and Genesis itself) suggest.


Whatever its root, Babel reflects the radical bio-socio-cultural changes this species underwent within the last half million years. The skyscraper - ziggurat - is blasphemous in its vertical thrust: phallic, violently humanist and post-God. In 1865, Gustave Doré engraves The Confusion of Tongues, above. The lower left shows laborers, hauling materials toward the Tower; we flashback/fastforward to 20th century industrial art to glorify the struggle of a disempowered lower class. The bottom righthand corner of the painting offers men in despair, and we know that their unitary language has already begun to disintegrate.


A man in the center throws his arms to the sky. His body follows the vertical movement of the painting, and his body's alignment with the Tower completes the symbol. We might call him Zarathustra. He is the self-propelled wheel: he strives, he reaches, he lifts himself off the ground. He has drawn his heavy revolvers.


God responds:


The Lord came down to see the city and the tower that the men had built. Then the Lord said: "If now, while they are one people, all speaking the same language, they have started to do this, nothing will later stop them from doing whatever they presume to do. Let us then go down and there confuse their language, so that one will not understand what another says." Thus the Lord scattered them from there all over the earth, and they stopped building the city. That is why it was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the speech of all the world. It was from that place that he scattered them all over the earth." - (Genesis 11:5-9)


Punishment for defiance of God's domain. But what is the fundamental human message? Stay low to the ground, bestial and simple. Vertical motion - that towards the overworld - is punished with division of language: misunderstanding, conflict, betrayal, confusion, despair. The apple of Eden: an item of human acheivement, soaked in the blood of Gods murdered in the process. The upthrust arms unite the actual with the ideal, bridge heaven and earth... and the motion is wrecked by divine intervention. Deus ex machina.

Within the context of Freud, we encounter the disapproval of the father. The child overcomes the failings of the archetype of the parent - man becomes God. How much of the God figure is developed around the notions of that which is beyond the capacity of the individual? In the context of our civilization: Zeus is lighting bolts: man is ICBMs. God is omniscient: man is logged on. When our species begins to approach the capacities of our God figures, how do we experience the movement?




What the hammer? what the chain?

In what furnace was thy brain?

What the anvil? what dread grasp

Dare its deadly terrors clasp?



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Comments (2)

dax said

at 9:52 pm on Sep 25, 2011

This is very Informative!

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