Log24

Monday, February 28, 2005

Monday February 28, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 7:00 PM

The Meaning of 3:16

From The New Yorker, issue dated Feb. 28, 2005:

Time Bandits,” by Jim Holt, pages 80-85:

“Wittgenstein once averred that ‘there can never be surprises in logic.'”

Miss Gould,” by David Remnick, pages 34-35:

“She was a fiend for problems of sequence and logic…. Her effect on a piece of writing could be like that of a master tailor on a suit; what had once seemed slovenly and overwrought was suddenly trig and handsome.”

Suddenly:

See Donald E. Knuth’s Diamond Signs, Knuth’s 3:16 Bible Texts Illuminated, and the entry of 3:16 PM today.

Trig and handsome
:

Remnick on Miss Gould again:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050228-MissGould.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Miss Gould,
photo from
Oberlin site

“She shaped the language of the magazine, always striving for a kind of Euclidean clarity– transparent, precise, muscular.”

Figure from           
3/16 2004:           
Intersecting altitudes
Einstein on Time cover

Einstein on his
“holy geometry book” —

“Here were assertions, as for example the intersection of the three altitudes of a triangle in one point, which– though by no means evident– could nevertheless be proved with such certainty that any doubt appeared to be out of the question. This lucidity and certainty made an indescribable impression upon me.”

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050228-Graveyard.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

   “I need a photo opportunity,   
      I want a shot at redemption….”

Monday February 28, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:16 PM
All Alone at the
End of the Evening…

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050228-Kingdom.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

So put me on a highway…

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050228-Highway.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Monday February 28, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 1:23 AM

Terrain

On the 77th annual Academy Awards:

“… in the Sarabande of Suite 6 Ma’s phrasing suggests we are in the same spiritual terrain as Beethoven’s late quartets.”

Thomas May

Amen.

For more on Bach, quartets, and film, see Eight is a Gate and 8/8/04.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Sunday February 27, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:00 PM
Necessity

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050227-Tie4.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Above: Detail from the
New York Times obituary page
of Sunday, Feb. 27, 2005:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050227-Obits.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

 “The form, the pattern”
T. S. Eliot

“We symbolize logical necessity
with the box (box.gif (75 bytes))….”
Keith Allen Korcz

“4 x 4 = 16”
Anonymous

“Es muss sein!”
Beethoven

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Saturday February 26, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 1:23 PM

Four Quartets

"The form, the pattern"
— T. S. Eliot

"4 x 4 = 16"
— Anonymous

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050226-Quartets.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Related material:
The Form, the Pattern
and
  1. Opus   18 no. 1:
    String Quartet No.  1 in F major
  2. Opus   18 no. 2:
    String Quartet No.  2 in G major
  3. Opus   18 no. 3:
    String Quartet No.  3 in D major
  4. Opus   18 no. 4:
    String Quartet No.  4 in C minor
  5. Opus   18 no. 5:
    String Quartet No.  5 in A major
  6. Opus   18 no. 6:
    String Quartet No.  6 in B flat major
  7. Opus   59 no. 1:
    String Quartet No.  7 in F major "Rasumovsky 1"
  8. Opus   59 no. 2:
    String Quartet No.  8 in E minor "Rasumovsky 2"
  9. Opus   59 no. 3:
    String Quartet No.  9 in C major "Rasumovsky 3"
  10. Opus   74:        
    String Quartet No. 10 in E flat major "Harp"
  11. Opus   95:        
    String Quartet No. 11 in F minor "Serioso"
  12. Opus 127:        
    String Quartet No. 12 in E flat major
  13. Opus 130:        
    String Quartet No. 13 in B flat major
  14. Opus 131:        
    String Quartet No. 14 in C sharp minor
  15. Opus 132:        
    String Quartet No. 15 in A minor
  16. Opus 135:        
    String Quartet No. 16 in F major

Friday, February 25, 2005

Friday February 25, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 10:53 AM

Mr. Holland’s Week,
continued

“Philosophers ponder the idea of identity: what it is to give something a name on Monday and have it respond to that name on Friday regardless of what might have changed in the interim. Medical science tells us that the body’s cells replace themselves wholesale within every seven years, yet we tell ourselves that we are what we were.

The question is widened and elongated in the case of the Juilliard String Quartet.”

Bernard Holland in the New York Times,
    Monday, May 20, 1996

“Robert Koff, a founding member of the Juilliard String Quartet and a concert violinist who performed on modern and Baroque instruments, died on Tuesday at his home in Lexington, Mass. He was 86….

Mr. Koff, along with the violinist Robert Mann, the violist Raphael Hillyer and the cellist Arthur Winograd, formed the Juilliard String Quartet in 1946….”

Allan Kozinn in the New York Times,
    Friday, February 25, 2005

“One listened, for example, to the dazed, hymnlike beauty of the F Major’s Lento assai, and then to the acid that Beethoven sprinkles all around it. It is a wrestling match, awesome but also poignant. Schubert at the end of his life had already passed on to another level of spirit. Beethoven went back and forth between the temporal world and the world beyond right up to his dying day.”

Bernard Holland in the New York Times,
    Monday, May 20, 1996

Words move, music moves
Only in time; but that which is only living
Can only die. Words, after speech, reach
Into the silence. Only by the form, the pattern,
Can words or music reach
The stillness, as a Chinese jar still
Moves perpetually in its stillness.
Not the stillness of the violin, while the note lasts,
Not that only, but the co-existence,
Or say that the end precedes the beginning,
And the end and the beginning were always there
Before the beginning and after the end.
And all is always now.

T. S. Eliot, Four Quartets

Related material: Elegance and the following description of Beethoven’s last quartet.

Program note by Eric Bromberger:

String Quartet in F major, Op. 135
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

Born December 16, 1770, Bonn
Died March 26, 1827, Vienna

This quartet – Beethoven’s last complete composition – comes from the fall of 1826, one of the blackest moments in his life. During the previous two years, Beethoven had written three string quartets on commission from Prince Nikolas Galitzin, and another, the Quartet in C-sharp minor, Op. 131, composed between January and June 1826. Even then Beethoven was not done with the possibilities of the string quartet: he pressed on with yet another, making sketches for the Quartet in F major during the summer of 1826.

At that point his world collapsed. His twenty-year-old nephew Karl, who had become Beethoven’s ward after a bitter court fight with the boy’s mother, attempted suicide. The composer was shattered: friends reported that he suddenly looked seventy years old. When the young man had recovered enough to travel, Beethoven took him – and the sketches for the new quartet – to the country home of Beethoven’s brother Johann in Gneixendorf, a village about thirty miles west of Vienna. Here, as he nursed Karl back to health, Beethoven’s own health began to fail. He would get up and compose at dawn, spend his days walking through the fields, and then resume composing in the evening. In Gneixendorf he completed the Quartet in F major in October and wrote a new finale to his earlier Quartet in B-flat major, Op. 130. These were his final works. When Beethoven return to Vienna in December, he took almost immediately to bed and died the following March.

One would expect music composed under such turbulent circumstances to be anguished, but the Quartet in F major is radiant music, full of sunlight – it is as if Beethoven achieved in this quartet the peace unavailable to him in life. This is the shortest of the late quartets, and many critics have noted that while this music remains very much in Beethoven’s late style, it returns to the classical proportions (and mood) of the Haydn quartets.

The opening movement, significantly marked Allegretto rather than the expected Allegro, is the one most often cited as Haydnesque. It is in sonata form – though a sonata form without overt conflict – and Beethoven builds it on brief thematic fragments rather than long melodies. This is poised, relaxed music, and the finale cadence – on the falling figure that has run throughout the movement – is remarkable for its understatement. By contrast, the Vivace bristles with energy. Its outer sections rocket along on a sharply-syncopated main idea, while the vigorous trio sends the first violin sailing high above the other voices. The very ending is impressive: the music grows quiet, comes to a moment of stasis, and then Beethoven wrenches it to a stop with a sudden, stinging surprise.

The slow movement – Beethoven carefully marks it Lento assai, cantante e tranquillo – is built on the first violin’s heartfelt opening melody; the even slower middle section, full of halting rhythms, spans only ten measures before the return of the opening material, now elaborately decorated. The final movement has occasioned the most comment. In the manuscript, Beethoven noted two three-note mottoes at its beginning under the heading Der schwer gefasste Entschluss: “The Difficult Resolution.” The first, solemnly intoned by viola and cello, asks the question: “Muss es sein?” (“Must it be?”). The violins’ inverted answer, which comes at the Allegro, is set to the words “Es muss sein!” (“It must be!”). Coupled with the fact that this quartet is virtually Beethoven’s last composition, these mottoes have given rise to a great deal of pretentious nonsense from certain commentators, mainly to the effect that they must represent Beethoven’s last thoughts, a stirring philosophical affirmation of life’s possibilities. The actual origins of this motto are a great deal less imposing, for they arose from a dispute over an unpaid bill, and as a private joke for friends Beethoven wrote a humorous canon on the dispute, the theme of which he then later adapted for this quartet movement. In any case, the mottoes furnish material for what turns out to be a powerful but essentially cheerful movement. The coda, which begins pizzicato, gradually gives way to bowed notes and a cadence on the “Es muss sein!” motto.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Thursday February 24, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM
Three Days

Religious symbols that might
have been appropriate for
February 20, 21, and 22:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050224-Symbols.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Recall that this is Black History Month,
and that the octagon has a special
religious significance (here and here).

The second and third symbols
are derived from the first symbol,
which is itself derived from
a well-known commandment on
the New York Times obituary page:

The image “http://log24.com/log/pix05/050224-Enlarge.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
 

Thursday February 24, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:45 AM

It’s Quarter to Three
(continued)

I could tell you a lot
But you gotta be true to your code….

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Tuesday February 22, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:20 PM
The Past as Prologue:
Grand Rapids Revisited

For some background, see the
Log24 entries of Feb. 18-20, 2005,
which include the following illustration:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050218-Highwater.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

John Constantine,
cartoon character, and
Donald E. Knuth,
Lutheran mathematician

“…. recent books testify further to Calvin College’s unparalleled leadership in the field of Christian historiography. More than anyone else, the historians at Calvin (along with their Dutch Reformed publishers at Eerdmans) have led the way in first-rate thinking about the relationship between faith and history. One does not need to be a Calvinist, or a historian for that matter, to appreciate this thinking and its influence on a wide variety of intellectuals. I say this as a Lutheran who must confess in all honesty that his own American Lutheran tradition cannot hold a candle to the Calvinists in Grand Rapids….”

— Douglas A. Sweeney,


 History Wars: 

Taking a Shot at Redemption

Tuesday February 22, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 12:48 PM
A Shot at Redemption

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050222-T2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Hunter S. Thompson, photos
from The New York Times

Excerpt from Fritz Leiber's
"Damnation Morning," 1959:

"Time traveling, which is not quite the good clean boyish fun it's cracked up to be, started for me when this woman with the sigil on her forehead looked in on me from the open doorway of the hotel bedroom where I'd hidden myself and the bottles and asked me, 'Look, Buster, do you want to live?'"

"I need a photo-opportunity,
I want a shot at redemption.
Don't want to end up a cartoon
In a cartoon graveyard."
 

See also

Monday, February 21, 2005

Monday February 21, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:45 AM


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Monday February 21, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 1:09 AM
Spider

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050221-Spider.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

 

"You are Spider Jerusalem.

Spider is THE journalist of the future. He smokes, he does drugs, and he kicks ass. The drugs are going to eventually kill him but not before he gets his way. And his way is the demise of the failed American dream. Although full of hate, he cares about his city. All he wants to bring the world is truth. Spider Jerusalem, conscience of the City. Frightening thought, but he's the only one we've got."

What Gritty No Nonsense Comic Book Character are You? brought to you by Quizilla

The following references to the Fritz Leiber story "Damnation Morning" seem relevant:

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Sunday February 20, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — m759 @ 11:47 PM

Hunter Thompson
commits suicide


"Fear and Loathing" author dead at 67

 

Sunday February 20, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 2:20 PM

Relativity Blues

Today, February 20, is the 19th anniversary of my note The Relativity Problem in Finite Geometry.  Here is some related material.

In 1931, the Christian writer Charles Williams grappled with the theology of time, space, free will, and the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics (anticipating by many years the discussion of this topic by physicists beginning in the 1950's).

(Some pure mathematics — untainted by physics or theology — that is nevertheless related, if only by poetic analogy, to Williams's 1931 novel, Many Dimensions, is discussed in the above-mentioned note and in a generalization, Solomon's Cube.)

On the back cover of Williams's 1931 novel, the current publisher, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company of Grand Rapids, Michigan, makes the following statement:

"Replete with rich religious imagery, Many Dimensions explores the relation between predestination and free will as it depicts different human responses to redemptive transcendence."

One possible response to such statements was recently provided in some detail by a Princeton philosophy professor.  See On Bullshit, by Harry G. Frankfurt, Princeton University Press, 2005.

A more thoughtful response would take into account the following:

1. The arguments presented in favor of philosopher John Calvin, who discussed predestination, in The Death of Adam: Essays on Modern Thought, by Marilynne Robinson

2. The physics underlying Einstein's remarks on free will, God, and dice
 
3. The physics underlying Rebecca Goldstein's novel Properties of Light and Paul Preuss's novels  Secret Passages and Broken Symmetries

4. The physics underlying the recent so-called "free will theorem" of John Conway and Simon Kochen of Princeton University

5. The recent novel Gilead, by Marilynne Robinson, which deals not with philosophy, but with lives influenced by philosophy — indirectly, by the philosophy of the aforementioned John Calvin.

From a review of Gilead by Jane Vandenburgh:  

"In The Death of Adam, Robinson shows Jean Cauvin to be the foremost prophet of humanism whose Protestant teachings against the hierarchies of the Roman church set in motion the intellectual movements that promoted widespread literacy among the middle and lower classes, led to both the American and French revolutions, and not only freed African slaves in the United States but brought about suffrage for women. It's odd then that through our culture's reverse historicism, the term 'Calvinism' has come to mean 'moralistic repression.'"

For more on what the Calvinist publishing firm Eerdmans calls "redemptive transcendence," see various July 2003 Log24.net entries.  If these entries include a fair amount of what Princeton philosophers call bullshit, let the Princeton philosophers meditate on the summary of Harvard philosophy quoted here on November 5 of last year, as well as the remarks of November 5, 2003,  and those of November 5, 2002.

From Many Dimensions (Eerdmans paperback, 1963, page 53):

"Lord Arglay had a suspicion that the Stone would be purely logical.  Yes, he thought, but what, in that sense, were the rules of its pure logic?"

A recent answer:

Modal Theology

"We symbolize logical necessity
with the box (box.gif (75 bytes))
and logical possibility
with the diamond (diamond.gif (82 bytes))."

Keith Allen Korcz,
(Log24.net, 1/25/05)

And what do we           
   symbolize by  The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/Modal-diamondbox.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. ?

"The possibilia that exist,
and out of which
the Universe arose,
are located in
     a necessary being…."

Michael Sudduth,
Notes on
God, Chance, and Necessity
by Keith Ward,
Regius Professor of Divinity
at Christ Church College, Oxford
(the home of Lewis Carroll)

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Saturday February 19, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 4:01 PM
Highway

From previous Log24.net entries:

Eight is a Gate:

“There is no highway in the sky.”
— Quotation attributed to
Albert Einstein.
(See Gotthard Günther’s website
“Achilles and the Tortoise, Part 2”.) 

“Don’t give up until you
Drink from the silver cup
And ride that highway in the sky.”
—  America, 1974    

In Hoc Signo:

“So put me on a highway….”
The Eagles, 1975  

Stephen Yablo, draft of
A Paradox of Existence,”
Nov. 8, 1998, section heading:

“III. Quine’s way or the highway”

From that section:

“Burgess & Rosen begin their book A Subject with No Object with a relevant fable:

Finally, after years of waiting, it is your turn to put a question to the Oracle of Philosophy…you humbly approach and ask the question that has been consuming you for as long as you can remember: ‘Tell me, O Oracle, what there is. What sorts of things exist?’ To this the Oracle responds: ‘What? You want the whole list? …I will tell you this: everything there is is concrete; nothing there is is abstract….’

Suppose we continue the fable a little. Impressed with what the Oracle has told you, you return to civilization to spread the concrete gospel. Your first stop is at [your school here]….”

The Concrete Gospel
of Donald E. Knuth:

In Hoc Signo
(from yesterday),
continued —

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050219-Signo.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

This holy icon
appeared at
N37°25.638′
W122°09.574′
on August 22, 2003,
at the Stanford campus.

See also
Cognitive Blending
and the Two Cultures
.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Friday February 18, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:33 PM

In Hoc Signo

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050218-Highwater.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Sources:

Hellblazer: Highwater,
from a graphic-novel
series that is the source
of Keanu Reeves’s latest
spiritual adventure —


The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050218-Poster.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Another source…
The home page of Donald E. Knuth.

For those who prefer a more
  ecumenical spiritual experience,
there is
  Knuth’s collection of —

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050218-Signs.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors..

“When there’s nothing to believe in
Still you’re coming back,
you’re running back
You’re coming back for more

  So put me on a highway….”
The Eagles, 1975  

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Thursday February 17, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 1:00 PM
Modal Theology

“We symbolize logical necessity
with the box (box.gif (75 bytes))
and logical possibility
with the diamond (diamond.gif (82 bytes)).

Keith Allen Korcz,
(Log24.net, 1/25/05)

And what do we           
   symbolize by  The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/Modal-diamondbox.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. ?

On the Lapis Philosophorum,
the Philosophers’ Stone –

“‘What is this Stone?’ Chloe asked….
‘…It is told that, when the Merciful One
made the worlds, first of all He created
that Stone and gave it to the Divine One
whom the Jews call Shekinah,
and as she gazed upon it
the universes arose and had being.'”
Many Dimensions,
by Charles Williams, 1931
(Eerdmans paperback,
April 1979, pp. 43-44)

“The lapis was thought of as a unity
and therefore often stands for
the prima materia in general.”
Aion, by C. G. Jung, 1951
(Princeton paperback,
1979, p. 236)

“Its discoverer was of the opinion that
he had produced the equivalent of
the primordial protomatter
which exploded into the Universe.”
The Stars My Destination,
by Alfred Bester, 1956
(Vintage hardcover,
July 1996, p. 216)

“The possibilia that exist,
and out of which
the Universe arose,
are located in
     a necessary being….”

Michael Sudduth,
Notes on
God, Chance, and Necessity
by Keith Ward,
Regius Professor of Divinity
at Christ Church College, Oxford
(the home of Lewis Carroll)

See also
The Diamond Archetype.

For more on modal theology, see

Kurt Gödel’s Ontological Argument
and
 The Ontological Argument
 from Anselm to Gödel.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Wednesday February 16, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 1:25 AM
Fahne Hoch

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050216-Fahne.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Nicole Bengiveno in
The New York Times

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Tuesday February 15, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 5:28 PM
Answer

“Are you now, or have you ever been?”

— Question posed to Philip Johnson,
entry of Feb. 12

“In the case of the Cartesian question, the answer is affirmative, and metaphysics has produced, in the four hundred years since, nothing much better than this. It is not only interesting but supremely practical. What could be more useful than having the means of convincing oneself that one exists whenever the question should arise?”

— Rebecca Goldstein,
   Properties of Light

“… a nightshirted boy trying desperately to awake from the iridescent dizziness of dream life. Its ultimate vision was the incandescence of a book or a box grown completely transparent and hollow. This is, I believe, it: not the crude anguish of physical death but the incomparable pangs of the mysterious mental maneuver needed to pass from one state of being to another.”

— Vladimir Nabokov,
Transparent Things

“Le terme que l’on traduit par dédicace est en japonais ekô, littéralement ‘se tourner vers’. Il est composé de deux idéogrammes, e qui signifie ‘tourner le dos, se tourner, revenir en arrière’ et , ‘faire face, s’adresser à’.”

La dédicace universelle:
  une causerie d’Eric Rommeluère

e: Tournant le Dos

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050215-Light.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

kô: Faisant Face

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050215-Goldstein.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Rebecca
Goldstein

For more on Goldstein, see
The New York Times,
Feb. 14, 2005, and
Eight is a Gate,
Dec. 19, 2002.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Monday February 14, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:21 PM
Valentine

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050214-Valentine.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Sunday February 13, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 8:00 PM

Eight is a Gate,
continued

“The eighth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is called ‘Chet’ (rhymes with ‘let’) and has the (light scraping) sound of ‘ch’ as in ‘Bach.'”

The Letter Chet    

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050213-Chet.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Akhlah.com    

Sunday February 13, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:00 PM
Eight is a Gate

“The old men know
when an old man dies.”
— Ogden Nash

“Heaven is a state,
a sort of metaphysical state.”
— John O’Hara, Hope of Heaven, 1938

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050213-Three.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

But in a larger sense…

Mais il y a un autre sens dans la dédicace que je trouve plus profond encore. Il s’agit de se dédier soi-même. Le terme que l’on traduit par dédicace est en japonais ekô, littéralement “se tourner vers”. Il est composé de deux idéogrammes, e qui signifie “tourner le dos, se tourner, revenir en arrière” et , “faire face, s’adresser à”.

Dans l’école Tendai, on explique que ce terme possède trois sens:

– tourner le dos (e) aux phénomènes et faire face () au principe;
– tourner le dos (e) au soi et faire face () aux autres;
– tourner le dos (e) aux causes et faire face () aux effets.

On pourrait dire regarder l’essentiel, regarder autrui et regarder le futur. Le terme évoque un retournement. Il s’agit d’aller à rebours de nos fonctionnements habituels, de bouleverser nos attitudes, se détourner de l’égocentrisme pour aller dans le sens de l’ouverture, ne plus se fourvoyer dans l’erreur mais s’ouvrir à la clarté.

Ekô a bien dans les textes bouddhistes un double sens, c’est à la fois dédier quelque chose comme la récitation d’un texte mais également se dédier soi-même. Dans cette deuxième attitude, c’est soi-même, tout entier, corps et esprit, qui est l’objet de la dédicace. Plus qu’on donne, on se donne. On trouve les deux sens chez Dôgen qui n’ignore pas le “transfert des mérites” mais qui sait que ekô se confond avec la voie de l’éveil. Il y a par exemple ce passage dans le Shôbôgenzô Zuimonki:

“Dans le bouddhisme, il y a ceux qui sont foncièrement doués d’amour et de compassion, de connaissance et de sagesse. Pour peu qu’ils étudient, ceux qui en sont dépourvus les réaliseront. Ils n’ont qu’à abandonner le corps et l’esprit, se dédier (ekô) dans le grand océan du bouddhisme, se reposer sur les enseignements du bouddhisme et ne pas rester dans les préjugés personnels.”
[Buppô ni wa, jihi chie mo yori sonawaru hito mo ari. Tatoi naki hito mo gaku sureba uru nari. Tada shinjin o tomoni hôge shite, buppô no daikai ni ekô shite, buppô no kyô ni makasete, shikiyoku o son zuru koto nakare.]
(Shôbôgenzô zuimonki, Edition populaire, cinquième cahier, première causerie)

Le français ne peut véritablement rendre la subtilité du choix des mots de Dôgen qui utilise des figures de style typiquement chinoises comme le chiasme, l’opposition et l’appariement. Il emploie des verbes d’état d’une part : se reposer, rester, de l’autre des verbes d’action, abandonner (hôge su, lit. “laisser choir”), se dédier (ekô su, lit. “se tourner vers”, qui a presque ici le sens de “se jeter”). Réaliser l’amour, la compassion, la connaissance et la sagesse nécessite une transformation, une conversion, un saut dans l’ailleurs. Ce dynamisme permet de quitter le soi égocentré pour entrer dans la dimension de l’éveil, ce que Dôgen appelle ici le bouddhisme.

Ce retournement, ekô, possède une double dimension, à la fois interne et externe. D’un point de vue intérieur, nous nous dédions à l’éveil, d’un point de vue extérieur, nous nous dédions aux autres. Mais l’intérieur et l’extérieur sont comme les deux faces d’une même feuille de papier.

La dédicace universelle:
une causerie d’Eric Rommeluère

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Saturday February 12, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 1:00 PM

Resurrection Blues

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Saturday February 12, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 12:00 AM

Memorial

For Abraham, Arthur, and Murray

Friday, February 11, 2005

Friday February 11, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:07 AM

Portfolio Analysis

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For more on portfolio analysis, see
Michael J. Best and Tribute.

Friday February 11, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:09 AM

The Blues
and the
Abstract Truth

An obituary of jazz artist Jimmy Smith, who died on Mardi Gras, leads, via his album Got My Mojo Workin’, to a 1961 album of Oliver Nelson that in turn suggests the following quotation:

“After this it was noised abroad that Mr. Valiant-for-truth was taken with a summons by the same post as the other, and had this for a token that the summons was true, ‘That his pitcher was broken at the fountain.’ (Eccles. 12:6) When he understood it, he called for his friends, and told them of it. Then said he, I am going to my Father’s; and though with great difficulty I have got hither, yet now I do not repent me of all the trouble I have been at to arrive where I am. My sword I give to him that shall succeed me in my pilgrimage, and my courage and skill to him that can get it. My marks and scars I carry with me, to be a witness for me that I have fought His battles who will now be my rewarder. When the day that he must go hence was come, many accompanied him to the river-side, into which as he went, he said, ‘Death, where is thy sting?’ And as he went down deeper, he said, ‘Grave, where is thy victory?’ (1 Cor. 15:55) So he passed over, and all the trumpets sounded for him on the other side.”

— John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress

“And all the trumpets sounded…”

For example:

Windows
Media
Real
Player
Yearnin’ Listen Listen
Stolen Moments Listen Listen
Cascades Listen Listen

These clips are from
the Amazon.com page
for the Oliver Nelson album

The Blues and the Abstract Truth.

Tuesday, February 8, 2005

Tuesday February 8, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:32 PM
The Crimson Passion

(last year’s Mardi Gras drama)
continues with…

The Usual Suspects

(See previous entry.)

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The theme of last year’s drama
is still valid:

“The teenagers aren’t all bad.
I love ’em if nobody else does.
There ain’t nothing wrong
with young people.
Jus’ quit lyin’ to ’em.”

Jackie “Moms” Mabley   

Tuesday February 8, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 10:00 AM
New from the
Oscar-winning producer,
director, and screenwriter

of “A Beautiful Mind” –

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With apologies to Dan Brown

“The Divine Proportion

is an irrational number and
the positive solution
of the quadratic equation

x2 – x – 1 = 0,

which is (1+Sqrt(5))/2,
about 1.618034.

The Greek letter ‘phi’
(see below for the symbol)
is sometimes used
to represent this number.”

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Don Cohen  

For another approach to
the divine proportion, see

Best Picture.

“The rogue’s yarn that will run through much of the material is the algebraic symmetry to which the name of Galois is attached and which I wanted to introduce in as concrete and appealing a way as possible….

Apart from its intrinsic appeal, that is the reason for treating the construction of the pentagon, and our task today will be to acquire some feel for this construction.  It is not easy.”
 
— R. P. Langlands, 1999 lecture (pdf) at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, in the spirit of Hermann Weyl

Sunday, February 6, 2005

Sunday February 6, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 3:33 PM

The Equation

David Thomson on The Last Tycoon in The Guardian on 1/29/05:

“There’s a passage in the book, early on, where Cecilia’s narration says: ‘You can take Hollywood for granted like I did, or you can dismiss it with the contempt we reserve for what we don’t understand. It can be understood, too, but only dimly and in flashes. Not half a dozen men have ever been able to keep the whole equation of pictures in their heads.’….

That phrase stuck in my head: The Whole Equation was a title, waiting to have its book written.  And the book might be all the more intriguing (and difficult to do) because Fitzgerald had never been able to give us the equation itself, a tidy little e=mc2.  That equation was as elusive as magic: it was a vision, a power, a passion, a kind of perfection that could change the world.”

David Thomson’s book The Whole Equation was published recently.

Friday, February 4, 2005

Friday February 4, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 7:00 PM

Fountainhead

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Dominique and
Dominique

Sources:

A blog entry on The Fountainhead,
  a 1949 film featuring archltect
Howard Roark and his patroness,
Dominique Francon,
and a web page on
architecture patroness
Dominique de Menil,
who, with her husband,
commissioned
a house in Houston

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050204-MenilGarden.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

in 1948 from
architect Philip Johnson.

Related material:

“Architecture is a dangerous profession,
because it is a poisonous mixture
of impotence and omnipotence,
in the sense that the architect
almost invariably harbors
megalomaniacal dreams
that depend upon others,
and upon circumstances,
to impose and
to realize those
fantasies and dreams.”

— Rem Koolhaas,
Conversations With Students,
quoted at http://www.treyf.com

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