DaemonsDiabolusDervish (fictiony/early days)

Anon, Anon Dear Reader (readers render) delighted to find you still looking at my letter/s, my Epistle.

 

For this now, let’s simply concern ourselves with what in the world is meant by the word diabolus in the passage below*

 

“Other centuries sought safety in the union of reason and religion, research and asceticism.  In their Universitas Litterarum, theology ruled.  Among us we use meditation, the fine gradations of yoga technique, in our efforts to exorcise the beast within us and the diabolus dwelling in every branch of knowledge…[The] Glass Bead Game also has its hidden diabolus, that it can lead to empty virtuosity, to artistic vanity, to self-advancement, to the seeking of power over others and then to the abuse of that power.  This is why we need another kind of education beside the intellectual and submit ourselves to the morality of the Order, not in order to reshape our mentally active life into a psychically vegetative dream-life, but on the contrary to make ourselves fit for the summit of intellectual achievement. We do not intend to flee from the vita activa to the vita contemplativa, nor vice versa, but to keep moving forward while alternating between the two, being at home in both, partaking of both.” 1

Hesse, Hermann 1990 The Glass Bead Game: (Magister Ludi). New York: H. Holt pg. 237

 

One devil is the “beast within us”

The other devil (the ‘hidden’ one) is “dwelling in every branch of knowledge.”  This sounds like the The Devil who is in the details.  Where are branches of knowledge located?  In our minds? In the system of interactions occurring in our brains?  In the ether? In consciousness? Is this the same beast slithering in the branches of the forbidden Tree of Knowledge who met Adam and Eve in the Garden?

 

Upon eating from the Tree of Knowledge, did Adam and Eve gain nothing more than “empty virtuosity” or “artistic vanity” or the desire to possess and subsequently wield power?

 

Hesse says this “required a new type of education”  One that moved forward in both vita activa and vita contemplativa. We should be forever alternating between the two.  Instead of engaging in a binary opposition. The tension emerges from the dialectic theory and practice of weighing and reconciling juxtaposed or contradictory arguments for the purpose of arriving at truth especially through discussion and debate. This emerging tension should be the object of our inquiry.

 

Which side of a coin is really heads and which side is really tails?  That is a meaningless question.

 

In order to determine which face was Janus’ true face, shall we pit one face against the other in a death battle.  The surviving face must be the true face of Janus. (?) Well that is a dumb idea because there is one body serving two faces.  If the faces each could have their own brain, they would be in competition for control over the same two arms and legs. He would be injuring his own limbs in his effort to destroy the ‘wrong’ face.  Could such a fight even occur?

 

Knowledge is not necessarily knowing.  Knowledge only exists if there is a knower, right? I contend that there is only one meaningful way to use the word “Knowledge”: I know knowledge.

 

Consider the following:

 

“Many years ago, It was common knowledge that the Earth was flat.  Presently, it is common knowledge that the Earth is not flat. What was common knowledge many years ago disagrees with what is common knowledge today.”  

 

Is it true that the Earth is an orb?  I suppose it depends on who you ask, or to be more specific, when you ask.  

 

If you asked a common man many years ago, “Is it true that the Earth is flat.”  He would probably affirm that statement.  

 

If you asked someone today, “Is it true that the Earth is flat?”  She would probably say, “What? Of course not, they figured out that was incorrect a long time ago.  The Earth is round.”


So, does that mean that the people many years ago-who believed it to be common knowledge that the Earth is flat-were being untruthful?  Were they lying when they said it was true that the Earth was flat?

 

No-they just did not know their existing knowledge was delusion; anyone can have knowledge of (x).

 

Knowledge can’t be truly possessed in a tangible way; being able to transplant the eternal, energetic potential of verb-forms into the dirt of the transient, physical world of everyday life is no trick. lt is magic and it is also alchemy: as four fundamental processes can transmutate the eternal matter of a verb into a noun – a thing, person or place. Miraculous.

 

But, let’s consider 2 nouns: theChurch and theKnowledge, both nouns and both words of power, but the vibrations and reverberations resonate conscientiously when the etymology of theWord is paid proper libation prior to using theWord.of

 

Take theWord and theChurch. In my Tribe, aChurch is a place (noun). Sure they ofChurch sojourn to make Church a SacredPlace; and, yes, you, AngryScientist/S (ASS), I understand that the actions of aChurch make you feel all funny inside. It’s scary when your insides act weird. It is also confusing when someone rattles the bars of your howler monkey cage. Confusing b/c your monkey howls as a pig squeals-really GD loud&screeching. Confusing because why is someone trying to mess with your dumb monkey anyway? You didn’t do sh1te to theChurch monkeys……yep..mmh… you didn’t start the monkey cage-shake heard round the world.

 

Hey! A.S.S. zip it & find your seats again – we’ll get to this grievance later.

 

In the Battle of the Word/s above -theChurch beats theKnowledge for better conjurgation and for careful symbolic construction: an adept found time and resources to draft blueprints for theConstruction of theChurch, a holy man being sought to lead the emergent micro-community sojourningItself-into-existence by its own bootstraps. The edification of 1 noun,  theChurch, is made real in the transient, physical domain as soon as construction is completed.

 

thePathÖtheReligios, say whatever else you wilt, but I readily acknowledge Impeccability/n’ Word to theChurch, and to hell with however apologetic that ASS, as well as his, “less zealously” inclined contemporaries think I should be for endeavoring to speak about Affairs/ÖAcademia in such a seedy establishment as Church: filled with all sorts of monkey-cage shaking, ignorant WhiteTrash and/or unreasonable, irrational people who (infuriatingly) refuse to acknowledge Logical Positivism.

 

No?! You don’t know what LP is? Well, color-me-shucked & shocked. Bless their hearts, Religioso and Academia (both oh so concerned with their super-deep and super-meaningful, self-proclaimed quests: to abide in love, compassion, and dispassionate reason in order to transcend to a higher understanding about our world) don’t feel guilty for not having actually deeply investigated all the axioms that hold your worldview together. Yeah, it turns out there’s more to it than being able to list the steps in the scientific method. But trust us, we’ve seen how hard you are trying these days. One person holding 2 screens that pump information at your eyeballs.

 

Ahem-what was I talking about?

 

You cannot have knowledge, but you can Know knowledge.  I see no apparent disingenuous intent in the initial assertion that the Earth was flat.  My thought being that maybe there were no alternative propositions competing with the idea of a flat Earth.  In fact, the idea of flat Earth was possessed by man unawares. It informed his reality but did so without his awareness. The possibility of an alternative did not yet exist, had not been considered.  

 

Let us stop for a moment, and examine our basic object of inquiry in the scenario above-Earth

 

If there is one thing public education taught me about writing it is this—–if you begin your paper with “Webster’s Dictionary defines [insert object of study here] as [copy the definition verbatim from the dictionary here]”  you are a good writer. All textbooks say that doing this is a credible way to introduce your topic.

 

Merrium-Webster’s Unabridged defines the planet Earth as………

 

Okay, so Merrium-Webster’s Unabridged defines earth.

 

And abruptly, I now find myself stumbling through

a particular region of the world; Or else in

areas of land uncovered by water; or else in

the sphere of mortal life comprising the world with its lands and seas as distinguished from spheres of spirit life; Or else in

the fragmental material composing part of the surface of the globe

 

And finally, now at last, in the fifth core sense of earth, Merrium-Webster’s Unabridged defines earth as “ [a word] often capitalized : the planet upon which we live and which being about 93 million miles from the sun is the third in order of distance from the sun and which having a diameter at the equator of 7927 miles is the fifth in size among the planets — see PLANET table.

 

So, my object of inquiry is the planet Earth: specifically, the often-capitalized, proper-noun status, fifth core sense of earth laid out by Merrium-Webster’s Unabridged.

 

When did my object of inquiry come into existence?

 

Since the Copernican revolution of the 16th century, thinkers have regarded Earth as a planet like the others of the solar system. First, some Polish astronomer, Nicolaus Copernicus, proposes a Sun-centered model of the universe, next concurrent sea voyages begin providing proof that Earth is a globe, and lastly, some dude called Galileo goes and not only invents technology that allows him to peer far, far into the night sky, but also develops said technology into a physical telescope which he proceeds to look into, only to find himself seeing various other planets that appeared to be globes as well.

 

Wait, wait, wait, wait.  

 

Did I just say that the Earth came into existence in the 16 the century? Because, that does not sound right. The Earth has been around for….a long time.  My college professor James Bindon once told us, in class, that if you compress the amount of time the earth has existed (according the geological record) into a 12 month period of time, then humans would not have arrived at the global shindig until sometime after early morning on New Year’s Eve.  

 

To say that the planet Earth came into existence in the sixteenth century obviously feel to me to be resoundingly untrue and ridiculous.  

 

If someone told you that she had just today learned that the planet Earth came into existence in the sixteenth century, it does not seem unfair to imagine that you would be filled with confusion, disbelief, or think she was joking; because, surely no one would be avowing the verity of such a glaring and gross fallacy.  

 

I will.  I rebuke that assessment with great prejudice and here is why—-the diabolus of this conundrum does not dwell within my object of inquiry laid out above; this elusive diabolus dwells in the details-like those very long paragraphs of little, teeny-tiny words found at the bottom of the TV frame during commercials for car-sales events or pharmaceutical ads. This hidden diabolus whispers into my ear words and sentences filled with such axiomatic-like insistence that eventually I come to recite them all on my own. Constantly and involuntarily, in the manner of my heart’s beat and my eyelids’ blink, I catch myself silently singing the song of “all things are either true or not, right or incorrect, existence occurs in a void, you exist in that void too, that void is created by external boundaries which you will never surmount. There are truths about the things existing in the void with you, but they are knowable only from the other side of the walls which bind you within the void.”

 

My object of study-the planet Earth-(which I lay out with concise and explicit exposition above) is neither real nor unnatural, true nor false.

 

Here is how showing is different from saying.   

 

Author: writtencasey

New to the world of blogging, I have always been fascinated by the scientific endeavor and I read about or engage with those processes as much as possible. I am a compulsive reader and writer (predominately non-fiction and scholarly work) With a background in anthropology and as an arm-chair/backyard scientist, I hope to improve my writing skills and learn about any areas of weakness or misunderstanding in my analytic skills. I want to improve and am particularly interested in science blogging and creating science content as a freelancer. I work for a wonderful company procuring high asset/risk insurance coverage for niche businesses and professionals, not fitting typical underwriting models as a day job. I am excited to share my journey through scientific discussion, essays, how to's, technical papers, creative non-fiction, with some free verse prose thrown in for my own fun. Thank you for spending time here. Please reach out if you are so inclined. I'd be excited to hear from you.

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