Sunday, April 23, 2017

Suggested Reality


"You must suggest to me reality; you can never show me reality.

...all thinkers are apt to become dogmatic, and every dogma fails because it does not give you the other side. The same is true of all things, art, religion and everything else. You must find a third, as your standpoint of reason. This is how I came to work in the science of geometry, which is the only abstract truth."

- George Inness (1825 - 1894)

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

A Great Dream


"Coincidence is the simultaneous occurrence of causally unconnected events...If we visualize each causal chain progressing in time as a meridian on the globe, then we may represent simultaneous events by the parallel circles of latitude...Thus progressions of causal events proceed in one direction, while coincidences link these events from a completely different direction, in a completely different progression. One might say the "motives" of coincidence are of a different "character" or even from a different 'dimension' from causal events.

All the events in a man's life accordingly stand in two fundamentally different kinds of connection: firstly, in the objective, causal connection of the natural process; secondly, in a subjective connection which exists only in relation to the individual who experiences it, and which is thus as subjective as his own dreams, whose unfolding content is necessarily determined, but in the manner in which the scenes in a play are determined by the poet's plot. That both kinds of connection exist simultaneously, and the self-same event, although a link in two totally different chains, nevertheless falls into place in both, so that the fate of one individual invariably fits the fate of the other, and each is the hero of his own drama while simultaneously figuring in a drama foreign to him--this is something that surpasses our powers of comprehension, and can only be conceived as possible by virtue of the most wonderful pre-established harmony...It is a great dream dreamt by the single entity, the Will to Life: but in such a way that all his personae must participate in it. Thus, everything is interrelated and mutually attuned."

- Arthur Schopenhauer (1788 - 1860)

Monday, April 17, 2017

Nearer and Farther


"All architecture is what you do to it
when you look upon it,
(Did you think it was in the white or gray stone?
or the lines of the arches and cornices?)

All music is what awakes from you
when you are reminded by the instruments,
It is not the violins and the cornets,
it is not the oboe nor the beating drums,
nor the score of the baritone singer singing 
his sweet romanza, nor that of the men's chorus,
nor that of the women's chorus,
It is nearer and farther than they."

- Walt Whitman (1819 - 1892)

Saturday, April 08, 2017

Looking at Yourself


"How many of us now realize that space is the same thing as mind, or consciousness? That when you look out into infinity you are looking at yourself? That your inside goes with your entire outside as your front with your back? That this galaxy, and all other galaxies, are just as much you as your heart or your brain? That your coming and going, your waking and sleeping, your birth and your death, are exactly the same kind of rhythmic phenomena as the stars and their surrounding darkness? To be afraid of life is to be afraid of yourself."

- Alan Watts (1915 - 1973)

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Restructuring Consciousness


"The holistic mode of consciousness is complementary to [analysis]... this mode is nonlinear, simultaneous, intuitive instead of verbal-intellectual, and concerned more with relationships than with the discrete elements that are related. It is important to realize that this mode of consciousness is a way of seeing, and as such it can only be experienced in its own terms. In particular, it cannot be understood by the verbal-intellectual mind because this functions in the analytical mode of consciousness, for which it is not possible to appreciate adequately what it means to say that a relationship can be experienced as something real in itself. In an analytical mode of consciousness it is the elements which are related that stand out in experience, compared with which the relationship is but a shadowy abstraction. The experience of a relationship as such is only possible through a transformation from a piecemeal way of thought to a simultaneous perception of the whole. Such a transformation amounts to a restructuring of consciousness itself. … Whereas we imagine movement and change analytically, as if the process really consisted of a linear sequence of instantaneously stationary states (like a sequence of snapshots), when movement and change are experienced holistically, they are experienced as a whole. The elements which are experienced simultaneously in this mode are thus dynamically related to each other, and this dynamical simultaneity replaces the static simultaneity of the analytical mode."

- Henri Bortoft (1938 - 2012)

Monday, April 03, 2017

Mysterious and Unexplorable


"We need the tonic of wildness...At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature."

Henry David Thoreau (1817 - 1862)

Sunday, April 02, 2017

Saturday, April 01, 2017

Sit and Quiet Yourself


"Sit and quiet yourself. Luxuriate in a certain memory and the details will come. Let the images flow. You'll be amazed at what will come out on paper. I'm still learning what it is about the past that I want to write. I don't worry about it. It will emerge. It will insist on being told."

- Frank McCourt (1930 - 2009)