Sunday, May 8, 2016
F: 8 a.m. Rita, re-reading For Whom the Bell Tolls makes me realize anew how much of life I have missed, from the very beginning.
R: And maybe you lived something else, to come to where you are.
F: Maybe so. I was forgetting, for a moment, that my lungs never would have let me live a normal life.
R: As Hemingway’s character Pilar would say, que va, normal!
F: Hmm, that sent me down a different alley, for sure. Pilar is as real as any other character. So is Robert Jordan.
R: That’s right.
F: When I am in a different place, I may have to talk to Papa about this.
R: Why, what
F: Yeah, I know – why, what a perfectly splendid idea.
R: Isn’t it?
F: But not necessarily mine. I get it.
R: Not quite, you don’t. Not yet. It isn’t that it is your idea or my (or our) idea, or an idea shared by 3D and non-3D. Any of those ways of looking at it will do, usually, but on close examination you will see that ideas too are creations. Ideas belong not to those they “occur to,” but to the general situation, and to the specific situation.
F: In what way?
R: You know how some people think that ideas are objectively “out there,” and you may happen to snag one when you come into range for whatever reason?
F: I have had that thought, more or less, and now that you mention it I think I did read it (and it stuck, I guess), but long ago.
R: But what if you think of ideas less as things, even insubstantial ones, and more as personalities.
F: Can’t quite see how to make sense of that.
R: Then say, relationships. Can you see them as relationships?
R: Or as lightning-sparks, bridging and equalizing a gap in potential? Or as momentary bridges stitching the mental world together?
F: Not quite.
R: Your electrical engineers may find it easier to do. Your landscape painters may be able to see a waterfall as a transition between two levels of terrain.
F: That echoes something I read very recently, don’t know where.
R: You may see an emotion as a bridge like a flash of intuition is a bridge.
F: None of these analogies seems much like a personality.
R: No, I’m not doing a very good job of doing this impromptu.
F: Impromptu. Strange thought.
R: Do you not sometimes twit me on lesson-plans? Are you reverting to “on the other side, there is no time”?
F: Either I’m denser than usual this morning, or the material is less familiar, or something on your side is different.
R: Three ways of saying, the flow isn’t smooth as it is sometimes. Flow results from – expresses – a difference between two things, being equalized or rather normalized.
F: And so, quit for the moment and return to it later?
R: You could, or, pushing though these brambles, you could learn something from the experience itself.
F: All right, let’s. At least for a little while.
R: It is natural in 3D to think in terms of objects, solidity, identity.
F: Ice cubes, vis a vis water.
R: That’s right. But because it is natural to think in terms of objects, it is natural to think in terms of relationships between objects. The very way you are led by 3D conditions to describe the non-material, or the non-solid, let’s call them, reinforces and assumes that they relate between objects.
F: Like seeing ocean currents connecting and separating continents?
R: Like seeing currents as less solid (let’s say, lacking a better word) than the water itself.
F: Less definite?
R: Less definite in a sense, yes. Less defined and definable. You measure a current by its movement relative to its surroundings. You could measure the medium in which the current flows – water, air, oil, whatever – as itself rather than only in relationship to something else. [Re-reading this, I think it was garbled and should have read something like the opposite of what came out. That is, you could measure the relationship and see it as itself rather than only a relationship. But I hadn’t come to that yet.] You see.
F: I do now, but let’s rephrase it. In a way, current, or flow, is less substantial than the medium in which it is perceived, and so is likely to be thought to be less real – less substance, less solid – than what it exists in. It is a relationship rather than a substance.
R: We’re getting there. You can see how slippery this is.
F: I can. Hard to keep track of. I can’t tell, as I write, whether this actually makes sense or not. The sentences do, as sentences, I know. But whether they make sense – I don’t have time to think about it.
R: Perceive first, analyze later.
F: I know, I know. I’m just putting it on the record.
R: What is an idea? What is a fictional character like Pilar? What is an archetype, a role model, a generalization, a mathematical relationship? All these are expressions in various languages of changes in time, or of differences being bridged, or of progressive steps to a different place. What is music but any of these? Can you have music without difference in time and note?
You might say none of these is real, but what you would be meaning is that none of them exists, themselves, as material manifestation. The notes of music may be written down, but music isn’t written down. Music may be recorded to be played back, but that is a playing back of a physical rendition of something that itself cannot be recorded.
F: This is tenuous, but I think you are saying that the music itself is not the same as a rendition of the music.
R: Neither is a building more than a rendition of its architectural relationships, that’s correct.
F: Our world is less solid than it seems.
R: It’s solid in relationship to itself. Hit yourself with a hammer if you are in doubt. And yes, it is less solid – that is, solidity is less solid – than it appears, when you experience the 3D in terms of the non-3D. but beyond that, you can learn to experience your world not as a world of solids intermediated by relationships and “laws,” and can come to see it as flow – and then everything changes around you, because your experience of the non-3D dimensions will change, which changes your experience of time (as the residue of non-experienced dimensions). This is what happens when you leave 3D enchantment at death.
F: “And enough for now.”
R: Correct. Enough for now.
F: I am amazed to see how many sheets we have covered, and how quickly – though come to think of it, it is now 8:00.
R: Time doesn’t fly when you are having fun, so much as expands so that in one way you are less aware of its passing and in another you are in dismay at the fact that it fleets.
F: I’ll have to think about that. Our thanks as always.