Sunday, September 04, 2011

Poised on the Edge of Oblivion

The Scream, 1893, Edvard Munch
From Play It Again Sam, 1972

WOODY ALLEN:  That's quite a lovely Jackson Pollock, isn't it?
GIRL IN MUSEUM:  Yes it is.
WOODY ALLEN:  What does it say to you?
GIRL IN MUSEUM:  It restates the negativeness of the universe, the hideous lonely emptiness of existence, nothingness, the predicament of man forced to live in a barren, godless eternity, like a tiny flame flickering in an immense void, with nothing but waste, horror, and degradation, forming a useless bleak straightjacket in a black absurd cosmos.
WOODY ALLEN:  What are you doing Saturday night?
GIRL IN MUSEUM:  Committing suicide.
WOODY ALLEN:  What about Friday night?
GIRL IN MUSEUM: [leaves silently] 

In a constant state of dread wanting only to understand with the full knowledge that is impossible.  G. K. Chesterton thought the madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything but his reason.  Reason is the giver of false hope.  If it's reasonable, if it can be measured, is that the same as knowing, as understanding?  I don't think so.  All one Knows really is the metric, that by which measurement is made and that metric when reduced to the lowest common denominator is the thing, our physical body.  Measurement is not understanding but it might lead to same.  When attachment arises wisdom is shut out.  That something is reasonable ends up being such attachment.  Any answer worth anything can only be intuited.  It's direct, unfiltered, knowledge that satisfies the heart.  The darkness that is ever dogging us, the dread of meaningless and essentially empty purpose leaves one with only one choice, to be taken with infinite resignation, and that is the leap of faith.  The reasonable man wants to own truth but what's true is that truth owns him.

If the whole of reality is an apotheosis then it seems obvious every instance is new.  "G_d" wouldn't waste time doing the same thing over and over.  This obviates Nietzsche's  notion that its the same thing  repeated infinitely.  The very fact that species mutate is proof enough the process more resembles a fractal than a simple progression; and any eventuation is rooted in a universal principle.  Light, e.g., is not just light, but an expression on many levels of the principle of illumination.  The nucleus of an atom illuminates its electrons follows the same principle that a star illuminates its planets and a lord his disciples.  Likewise, the star confers universality on the planets and they confer on the star individuality.  Aristotle thought matter conferred universality, form individuality.  In the same vein, God gives man universality while man confers on the Deity individuality.  He is the author of apotheosis, his creation the instrumentality.  He doesn't just live in his creatures, but through them he knows himself, has the illusion of sleeping and waking, dieing and being born.  It is infinitely self-inventing, and every instantiation increases and enriches the pregnancy for ensuing evolution. All that will ever be is already actual in the "beginning" even though all that will ever be is an elaboration on the infinite stream of prior instances. Every new instance is a new beginning and a new boundary for the new. Every new instantiation is an elaboration of its predecessor. And, our heavens are self made as are our hells. It's all about individual responsibility and self-reliance. Belief in nothing gets you just that.