A glimmer of the sort of stuff that mental masturbation is made of. Full podcast streaming and available for download below: Philosophy Bites presents Plato’s Allegory of the Cave.
It seems as though plato thought change was a sign of illusion. its as if the real world existed behind the change, the illusion of puppets, and was timeless: an immutable form of the real thing.
We compare ourselves amongst ourselves. Collectively, we perform culture, construct society, and chatter discourses that dialogue ideas concerning ideas. As individuals we are singular creations; however, it takes two to re-create one.
Within communities, we come to understand ourselves through our perception of those around us. Shift the belief or bias about a concrete and lackluster circumstance, or shift the circumstances to agree with a belief or bias: what is life but a capricious oscillation, phases of flexes and stasis, in a dance around a balancing point. The point? Similar to a flower that in essence exists as a rhizome before it appears as matter in the physical world, we exist before we are born and during our time in the world of shapes and forms we grow around obstacles of shade reaching towards the sun in a search for solutions to solutions, navigated by a compass rose directing a quest for questions. The hope is to find the outward thing which we basically are.
I find myself sitting in some unplaced moment behind my eyes. I remove myself because I perceive those around me as united and I am different. The barrier is a two-dimensional wall. I am removed; thus, I regain a locus of control through a reflexive defense mechanism. I remove myself.
Two truths hold simultaneously. We are all the same. I feel as though I am different. My sense of self situates like the dividing line between oil and water. We are one; I am.
I want to suround myself with people and environments that push and inspire me to be a higher me.
Memories, Dream, Reflection by Carl Jung and Anne Jaffe took me a good portion of the summer to read from cover to cover. This auto/biography has provided a great deal of meaning and symbolic significance to my personal perspective. I interacted with the text, reading and writing with a pen and highlighter handy; below are a few of many sentences extracted from the book that speak volumes in the space of a few sentences.
As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.
“Bidden or not bidden, God is present.” Carl Jung, the eminent psychologist, had this quote carved over the front door of his Zurich home, as well as on his tombstone. It is an English translation of the Latin “Vocatus Atque Non Vocatus Deus Aderit”, a quotation he came across when studying Erasmus. The words are said to originate from the reply given by Delphic Oracle to the Spartans when they were planning a war against Athens: “Yes, the Gods will be present, but in what form and to what purpose?”
Life has always seemed to me like a plant that lives on its rhizome. Its true life is invisible, hidden in the rhizome. The part that appears above ground lasts only a single summer. Then it withers away an ephemeral apparition.
When we think of the unending growth and decay of life and civilizations, we cannot escape the impression of absolute nullity. Yet I have never lost a sense of something that lives and endures underneath the eternal flux. What we see is the blossom, which passes. The rhizome remains.
When people say I am wise, or a sage, I cannot accept it. A man once dipped a hateful of water from a stream. What did that amount to? I am not that stream.
I am at the stream, but I do nothing. Other people are at the same stream, but most of them find they have to do something with it. I do nothing. I never think that I am the one who must see to it that cherries grow on stalks. I stand and behold, admiring what nature can do.
There is a fine old story about a student who came to a rabbi and said, “In the olden days there were men who saw the face of God. Why don’t they any more?” The rabbi replied, “Because nowadays no one can stoop so low”.
One must stoop a little in order to fetch water from the stream.
An idea struck me, and like a vessel with an opposable thumb, I will try to relay the message that shook me, through me, onto paper:
What if souls are oscillating travelers amongst and between the powerful forces of the universe–similar to plasma forms in a lava lamp.The soul’s energy manifests as matter, and eventually transforms back into energy, etc. When the energy takes shape as a body, the place on the trajectory path – ascending or descending- from soul to soul.
Personally, I feel as though I was born an old soul. Perhaps I rested on the abstraction of age, and a more accurate conceptualization for this sentiment and knowing of experiences I’ve yet to occur in this life, is that I was born from the crux ascending upwards from lowest point of decent. What if…?
Syzygy: (m.) gahasaṃyoga. (nt.) gahayuddha.Syzygial , adjective of syzygy, describes the alignment of three or more celestial bodies in the same gravitational system along a line.In broadest terms, syzygy (pronounced /ˈsɪzɨdʒi/ ) is a kind of unity, especially through coordination or alignment, most commonly used in the astronomical and/or astrological sense.  Syzygy is derived from the Late Latin syzygia, “conjunction,” from the Greek σύζυγος (syzygos).
- In astronomy , a syzygy is the alignment of three or more celestial bodies in the same gravitational system along a straight line. The word is usually used in context with the Sun , Earth , and the Moon or a planet , where the latter is in conjunction or opposition . Solar and lunar eclipses occur at times of syzygy, as do transits and occultations . The term is also applied to each instance of new moon or full moon when Sun and Moon are in conjunction or opposition, even though they are not precisely on one line with the Earth.
- The word ‘syzygy’ is often loosely used to describe interesting configurations of planets in general. For example, one such case occurred on March 21, 1894 at around 23:00 GMT , when Mercury transited the Sun as seen from Venus , and Mercury and Venus both simultaneously transited the Sun as seen from Saturn . It is also used to describe situations when all the planets are on the same side of the Sun although they are not necessarily found along a straight line, such as on March 10, 1982.
- In Gnosticism , a syzygy is a divine active-passive, male-female pair of aeons , complementary to one another rather than oppositional; in their totality they comprise the divine realm of the Pleroma , and in themselves characterise aspects of the Gnostic (known) God . The term is most common in Valentinianism . In some gnostic schools, the counterpart to Christ was Sophia .
- In mathematics , a syzygy is a relation between the generators of a module M. The set of all such relations is called the “first syzygy module of M”. A relation between generators of the first syzygy module is called a “second syzygy” of M, and the set of all such relations is called the “second syzygy module of M”. Continuing in this way, we get the n-th syzygy module of M by taking the set of all relations between generators of the (n-1)th syzygy module of M. If M is finitely generated over a polynomial ring over a field , this process terminates after a finite number of steps; i.e., eventually there will be no more syzygies (see Hilbert’s syzygy theorem ). The syzygy modules of M are not unique, for they depend on the choice of generators at each step.
- In philosophy , the Russian theologian/philosopher Vladimir Solovyov (1853–1900) used the word “syzygy” to signify “unity-friendship-community,” used as either an adjective or a noun, meaning:
- a pair of connected or correlative things, or;
- a couple or pair of opposites.
- In poetry , syzygy is the combination of two metrical feet into a single unit, similar to an elision. Consonantal or phonetic syzygy is also similar to the effect of alliteration , where one consonant is used repeatedly throughout a passage, but not necessarily at the beginning of each word.
- In psychology , Carl Jung used the term “syzygy” to denote an archetypal pairing of contra-sexual opposites, which symbolized the communication of the conscious and unconscious minds : the conjunction of two organisms without the loss of identity. Examples include Dieties of Life and Death or of Sun and Moon, which are frequently depicted as male and female, and having a mutually opposing and mutually dependant relationship.
- In zoology , syzygy is the association of two protozoa end-to-end or laterally for the purpose of asexual exchange of genetic material, the pairing of chromosomes in meiosis.
The soul never thinks without an image. – Aristotle
Therefore, psychotherapy, as a political discipline, witnesses, records, and transmits these on-going experiential communiqués from and dialogues with this numinous/ transformative realm of being. In some ancient cultures, every citizen was believed to be a vehicle for this living numinal dimension, for this living will and voice of the gods as mediated through human experience. The public sphere, the common marketplace of political interaction and achievement, was the Polis. This Polis was the living organism of Eros, of numinal energy flowing into the public heart and soul of things.
My work is revelation, not revolution. – William Butler Yeats
Every life had a Destiny that served an aspect of this living, shaping, creating, numinal core of individual and cultural psyche. A well lived life was a life unfolded in a conscious, loving seeking out of this Destiny and, then, serving it with as much thoughtful, loving, and compassionate dedication as possible. Privately, this service would be to loved ones and vocation; publically, this service would be an engaged political interaction with one’s fellow citizens.
All life is bound to carriers who realize it, and it is simply inconceivable without them. But every carrier is charged with an individual destiny and destination, and the realization of these alone makes sense of life. – C. G. Jung
Everyone is politically engaged. Some are simply more aware of and disciplined about that engagement and its attendant social responsibilities. Every act in the public sphere is a political act, an act that builds up more loving and compassionate connection to the living numinous or tears it down. But every act, conscious or unconscious, aware or unaware, is a healing or destructive political act. We are all citizen politicians. We all have a public duty. We all serve the gods in the fervent hopes that the gods will then serve us and our community and lead us to more light and not more darkness.
It may well be prejudice to restrict the psyche to being “inside the body.” Insofar as the psyche is a non-spatial aspect, there may be a psyche “outside-the-body,” a region so utterly different from “my” psychic sphere that no one has to get out of oneself…to get there. – C. G. Jung
This brief seminar sketches some clinical and cultural examples of these profound experiential psycho-political transcripts that emerge within or penetrate into depth therapy. Using frequent illustrative images from, especially, contemporary cinema and art, Friday’s lecture opens up the outlines of the model and Saturday’s seminar fleshes out that outline in more depth and breadth.
The psychological question now is, How do we house this greater subject that takes up residence in us, radically altering the center from which we live? How do we accommodate this “tremendous stranger,” or this “mysterious density of being”? How do we, how can we, live in relation to it?
The theological questions ask, Who has taken up residence within and among us? Who is the One? – Ann Belford Ulanov
Notes From the Underground: Furthermore,
For what is a man without desires, without free choice, without free will, if not a stop in an organ?
Reason is an excellent thing, there is no disputing that. But reason is only as good as reason and senseless to the senses.
Whereas free will is the manifestation of the entirety of man’s nature and life, including reason and all its impulses.
Man’s worst defect is perpetual moral obliquity.
Perpetual moral obliquity and lack of good sense, the later caused by the former.
Fantastic fatal sense: mans acts of ingratitude preformed against himself to convince himself that he is a man and not a piano key. Man would make himself go mad in order to ensure that he is a man and not a piano key.