The August Tunnel

Exiting the Wild Woods

August can be a bit of a tunnel. It’s so hot it’s probably worth hibernating, or hiding in the Wild Woods like St. John de Monmouth has been doing. I threw a coin in the swimming pool and wished for rain, and since then the weather has been cooler, and it has started raining! It’s soothes my soul after such a hot, dry season. And I feel momentum building, hence my flurry of posts on my blogs lately.

Feels good to be blogging again. 🙂

The Underworld

I’m reading The Transcendent Function by Jeffrey C. Miller, which talks about “Jung’s model of psychological growth through dialogue with the unconscious”. I came across a bit that mentioned the “otherworld”, not as a place, but as a perspective.

There is one universe, there is no “this world” nor “that world”. Just THIS world, lol. The world, though, isn’t just material, there are Other aspects to it, psychological depths. The Otherworld isn’t hidden behind/beneath/beyond this world, it is just the hidden aspects of this world. When we have glanced something of this hidden perspective connections can be made between things that rational thinking can’t make, intuitive leaps of consciousness we wouldn’t ordinarily consider.

The Otherworld is there with us. We just need to look within and develop “eyes to see”. 😉

The Fiction Zone

You pick up a good novel, you press play on your DVD and you get involved with the story. It doesn’t matter if the world represented isn’t real, it doesn’t matter if the characters aren’t real, but you’ll happily enter into it, even invest your emotions as you follow the characters through their own journey. You feel sympathy, empathy, antagonism and worry. You’re fully involved, you are in The Fiction Zone.

And then you put down the book; you switch off the TV, and reality is still there. You’ve suspended your disbelief (it was in space, it was in Middle Earth, it was an alien armada, it was a dragon) momentarily to enter into a new experience, a new perspective, with the imagination as your guide.

You’d not lost your reasoning nor common sense, they just subsided into the background;  not gone, but not central. You don’t become delusional, because you have a sense of reality, a good orientation to it, and yet you can enter into another mode of thinking and feeling, in contact with the imagination. This is The Fiction Zone.

Science, Strength and Fallibility

The strength of science is its fallibility. This is a phrase I have seen many times in discussions on the Internet, and I am inclined to agree.

Science is a tool of exploration; it explores nature through observable phenomena. Through this it then tries explain these. These explanations, scientific theories, are not infallible, and it is better that they are not, because otherwise there would be no room for further scrutiny and experimentation; in other words no more science.

Science thrives on being examined and re-examined, and then put through the process again. Theories are refined, revised, and nothing taking for granted (in theory). If practice the scientific method, community and theories are all subject to human limitations and biases, but it represents an ongoing process, not an end result.

Sounds of Nature

I’ve been poring over this website: exo-canto, listening to various bird calls. In this valley we’ve identified just under thirty different birds by sight, and the cuckoo we’ve only ever heard.

I can identify some birds by sounds but not much, so there could be plenty of birds that I hear and yet never see that I can’t identify. So I’m relaxing here, listening to some bird songs, getting familiar with their sounds. And maybe I’ll hear something I’ve never noticed before?

Patterns of Speech

This is something that’s been a draft for a while, and I hadn’t published it. So here it is. 🙂

I’ve been asleep or something! It’s like looking at a computer program and seeing the code that constructs it, or like seeing the streaking green Matrix-code behind the Matrix-world. I’ve been learning so many grammatical concepts (some understood, some not and many in a twilight in between) and beginning to see the structure of sentences in a different light. It makes learning languages easier: I think once you have the basics of a languages grammar (word order etc.) then the only barrier is the vocabulary and its use (and that’s not too hard if you immerse yourself in it). I can look at another languages grammar and understand some of it without having to learn the whole language.

It can get very technical, but I think there’s something artistic in the structure of language: the concepts and the structure used. There’s something quite creative in it, and it’s fascinating to think that there are many different ways of explaining the same thing, grammatical structures that at first glance aren’t the same, and may have contradictory meanings across cultures, but actually mean the same thing!

Talking History

A while ago I had an idea about writing interviews with historical personalities. I did it before with Socrates and thought it was quite fun, and a couple of weeks ago I did one with King George III (the “mad one”). This one’s just a bit of fun, but I thought about more serious stuff (not much more, but a bit), perhaps talk with a load of philosophers, or even monarchs? Though always with an underlying humour.

MAD KING GEORGE

ACB (that’s me): Hello

MKG: I’m a teapot!

ACB: Yes, so I see. Not very convincing.

MKG: What!?

ACB: I mean…

MKG: Careful of the Kettle Republicans, they’re out to pour boiling water in me to make tea!!! I won’t have that, NO!!! not at all…

ACB: Erm, yes, terrible. Kettles shouldn’t do that to teapots… I suppose.

MKG: Tea?

ACB: …

MKG: Ich bin könig!

ACB: Sorry, I don’t speak German.

MKG: Tiddles! Where are you boy, come here, Tiddles? Dinnsey Timesey, you’d like that, wouldn’t you?

ACB: I see, I don’t think I’ll get much from you. Thank you anyway.

MKG: Babi bimbi boombi blaaaaah

ACB: Right, I’ll leave you to it. Bye.

Miracles of Nature

Do you know what I can’t believe? That the universe wasn’t designed. And yet I do. A contradiciton in terms, but those are my sentiments. On one side nature displays such complexity that it makes our inventions seem like kids’ toys, on the other, nature displays such a self-reliance that there’s no space for anyone/thing guiding/designing it.

Intelligent design? That’s easy. The miracle of this universe is that there is no designer/creator. So, okay, I may not believe there is a creator, but I do believe in miracles! Natural Miracles! And just looking at the marvellous diversity of wildlife on my doorstep feels miraculous.

Blah blah blah at you?

One of my favourites expressions: Don’t talk at me, talk to me.

(hey you)

Because “talking at” doesn’t consider there is another person on the receiving end, that they have thoughts and feelings of their own that deserve consideration.

(great new offer)

“Talking to” someone means you acknowledge their presence, their “sacred otherness”.

(100% effective)

We’re surrounded by messages that talk at us, and don’t allow us to feel or think for ourselves. We just numb ourselves to it, or learn to filter it out of our thoughts, but this still affects us. It’s just not conscious.

(but don’t buy it, because you don’t need it)

It’s easy on the Internet to talk at people. It’s so big and anonymous that it’s easy to forget that there’s another person at the other end, with their own thoughts and feelings, their own personal story that might or might not have anything to do with mine.

(I’m going to stare at some trees, they don’t have flashy signs, nor Facebook… yet)

Take care, you 🙂