Log24

Monday, January 25, 2021

Illuminations

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:43 PM

For the title, see Illuminations in this journal.

Another approach —

These images were suggested by Creamy and Sweaty.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Coming to Meet

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:30 PM

Hexagram 44:
Coming to Meet

"This hexagram indicates a situation in which
the principle of darkness, after having been eliminated,
furtively and unexpectedly obtrudes again from within
and below. Of its own accord the female principle
comes to meet the male. It is an unfavourable and
dangerous situation, and we must understand and
promptly prevent the possible consequences.

The hexagram is linked with the fifth month
[June-July], because at the summer solstice
the principle of darkness gradually becomes
ascendant again."

— Richard Wilhelm 

To counteract the principle of darkness—

The Uploading (Friday— St. Peter's Day, 2012),

Thor's Light Bulb Joke, and …

 .

Friday, December 15, 2006

Friday December 15, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:02 AM

 Putting the
X
in Xmas

“It’s all in Plato, all in Plato;
bless me, what do they
teach them at these schools?”

C. S. Lewis

Apparently they teach them nihilism, empty rhetoric, and despair, as reflected in Borges, Baudrillard, and Benjamin, according to the art review below from today’s New York Times.  Let us hope that the late Peter Boyle, who died on Tuesday, Dec. 12, has moved beyond these now– singing “Heaven, I’m in Heaven,” rather than “Puttin’ on the Ritz.”

Ritz and Heaven

Black, White, and
Read All Over

by Randy Kennedy
in The New York Times
Friday, Dec. 15, 2006

“In one of Jorge Luis Borges’s best-known short stories, ‘Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote,’ a 20th-century French writer sets out to compose a verbatim copy of Cervantes’s 17th-century masterpiece simply because he thinks he can, originality perhaps not being all it’s cracked up to be.

He manages two chapters word for word, a spontaneous duplicate that Borges’s narrator finds to be ‘infinitely richer’ than the original because it contains all manner of new meanings and inflections, wrenched as it is from its proper time and context….”

[An artist’s version of a newspaper is]….

“a drawing of a copy of a version of what happened, holding a mirror up to nature with a refraction or two in between.  In a way that mixes Borges with a dollop of Jean Baudrillard and a heavy helping of Walter Benjamin, the work also upends ideas….”

The Work:

Pennsylvania Lottery
December 2006
Daily Number (Day):

Borges,
Menard’s Quixote, and
The Harvard Crimson
Mon., Dec. 11:
133
Baudrillard
(via a white Matrix)
Sun., Dec. 10:
569
Benjamin and
a black view of life in
“The Garden of Allah”
Sat., Dec. 9:
602

Click on numbers
for commentary.

Borges and Benjamin are
  referenced directly in the
  commentary. For Baudrillard,
  see Richard Hanley on
  Baudrillard and The Matrix:

“There is nothing new under the sun. With the death of the real, or rather with its (re)surrection, hyperreality both emerges and is already always reproducing itself.”  –Jean Baudrillard

Related material:

To Be,”

The Transcendent Signified,”

and…

Postmodern Religion


.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Wednesday September 15, 2004

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:00 PM

Shakespeare
for Rosh Hashanah

From “Walter Benjamin,
1892-1940,”
by Hannah Arendt
(Introduction to
Benjamin’s Illuminations.):

THE PEARL DIVER

Full fathom five thy father lies,
Of his bones are coral made,
Those are pearls that were his eyes.
Nothing of him that doth fade
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.
THE TEMPEST, I, 2

“… we are dealing here with something which may not be unique but is certainly extremely rare: the gift of thinking poetically.

And this thinking, fed by the present, works with the ‘thought fragments’ it can wrest from the past and gather about itself.  Like a pearl diver who descends to the bottom of the sea, not to excavate the bottom and bring it to light but to pry loose the rich and the strange, the pearls and the coral in the depths, and to carry them to the surface, this thinking delves into the depths of the past– but not in order to resuscitate it the way it was and to contribute to the renewal of extinct ages. What guides this thinking is the conviction that although the living is subject to the ruin of the time, the process of decay is at the same time a process of crystallization, that in the depth of the sea, into which sinks and is dissolved what once was alive, some things ‘suffer a sea-change’ and survive in new crystallized forms and shapes that remain immune to the elements, as though they waited only for the pearl diver who one day will come down to them and bring them up into the world of the living– as ‘thought fragments,’ as something ‘rich and strange,’ and perhaps even as everlasting Urphänomene.”

For examples of everlasting Urphänomene, see Translation Plane for Rosh Hashanah and The Square Wheel; recall that on this date

“In 1935, the Nuremberg Laws deprived German Jews of their citizenship and made the swastika the official symbol of Nazi Germany.”

Today in History, the Miami Herald

(For some further reflections on square wheels, see Triumph of the Cross.)

Wednesday September 15, 2004

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:56 PM

On Translation

From Illuminations, by Walter Benjamin, translated by Harry Zohn:

“If there is such a thing as a language of truth, the tensionless and even silent depository of the ultimate truth which all thought strives for, then this language of truth is– the true language.  And this very language, whose divination and description is the only perfection a philosopher can hope for, is concealed in concentrated fashion in translations.  There is no muse of philosophy, nor is there one of translation.  But despite the claims of sentimental artists, these two are not banausic.  For there is a philosophical genius that is characterized by a yearning for that language which manifests itself in translations: ‘Les langues imparfaites en cela que plusieurs, manque la suprême: penser étant écrire sans accessoires, ni chuchotement mais tacite encore l’immortelle parole, la diversité, sur terre, des idiomes empêche personne de proférer les mots qui, sinon se trouveraient, par une frappe unique, elle-même matériellement la vérité.’*  If what Mallarmé evokes here is fully fathomable to a philosopher, translation, with its rudiments of such a language, is midway between poetry and doctrine.  Its products are less sharply defined, but it leaves no less of a mark on history.”

* “The imperfection of languages consists in their plurality, the supreme one is lacking: thinking is writing without accessories or even whispering, the immortal word still remains silent; the diversity of idioms on earth prevents everybody from uttering the words which otherwise, at one single stroke, would materialize as truth.’

Stéphane Mallarmé / Crise de vers

(The Benjamin is from a copy of Illuminations I purchased exactly 12 years ago, on Sept. 15, 1992.)

Monday, August 25, 2003

Monday August 25, 2003

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 3:31 AM

Gates to the City

Today’s birthday:

On August 25, 1918, composer Leonard Bernstein was born.

From Winter’s Tale, Harcourt Brace (1983):

Four Gates to the City

By MARK HELPRIN

Every city has its gates, which need not be of stone. Nor need soldiers be upon them or watchers before them. At first, when cities were jewels in a dark and mysterious world, they tended to be round and they had protective walls. To enter, one had to pass through gates, the reward for which was shelter from the overwhelming forests and seas, the merciless and taxing expanse of greens, whites, and blues–wild and free–that stopped at the city walls.

In time the ramparts became higher and the gates more massive, until they simply disappeared and were replaced by barriers, subtler than stone, that girded every city like a crown and held in its spirit. Some claim that the barriers do not exist, and disparage them. Although they themselves can penetrate the new walls with no effort, their spirits (which, also, they claim do not exist) cannot, and are left like orphans around the periphery.

To enter a city intact it is necessary to pass through one of the new gates. They are far more difficult to find than their solid predecessors, for they are tests, mechanisms, devices, and implementations of justice. There once was a map, now long gone, one of the ancient charts upon which colorful animals sleep or rage. Those who saw it said that in its illuminations were figures and symbols of the gates. The east gate was that of acceptance of responsibility, the south gate that of the desire to explore, the west gate that of devotion to beauty, and the north gate that of selfless love. But they were not believed. It was said that a city with entryways like these could not exist, because it would be too wonderful. Those who decide such things decided that whoever had seen the map had only imagined it, and the entire matter was forgotten, treated as if it were a dream, and ignored. This, of course, freed it to live forever.

See also

Lenny’s Gate:

Fred Stein,
Central Park,
1945 

Thanks to Sonja Klein Fine Art
 for pointing out the Stein photo.

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Wednesday October 23, 2002

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 6:35 AM

Eleven Years Ago Today…

On October 23, 1991, I placed in my (paper) journal various entries that would remind me of the past… of Cuernavaca, Mexico, and a girl I knew there in 1962. One of the entries dealt with a book by Arthur Koestler, The Challenge of Chance. A search for links related to that book led to the following site, which I find very interesting:

http://www.geocities.com/Athens/2740/.

This is a commonplace-book site, apparently a collection of readings for the end of the century and millennium. No site title or owner is indicated, but the readings are excellent. Accepting the challenge of chance, I reproduce one of the readings… The author was not writing about Cuernavaca, but may as well have been.

From Winter’s Tale, Harcourt Brace (1983):

Four Gates to the City

By MARK HELPRIN

Every city has its gates, which need not be of stone. Nor need soldiers be upon them or watchers before them. At first, when cities were jewels in a dark and mysterious world, they tended to be round and they had protective walls. To enter, one had to pass through gates, the reward for which was shelter from the overwhelming forests and seas, the merciless and taxing expanse of greens, whites, and blues–wild and free–that stopped at the city walls.

In time the ramparts became higher and the gates more massive, until they simply disappeared and were replaced by barriers, subtler than stone, that girded every city like a crown and held in its spirit. Some claim that the barriers do not exist, and disparage them. Although they themselves can penetrate the new walls with no effort, their spirits (which, also, they claim do not exist) cannot, and are left like orphans around the periphery.

To enter a city intact it is necessary to pass through one of the new gates. They are far more difficult to find than their solid predecessors, for they are tests, mechanisms, devices, and implementations of justice. There once was a map, now long gone, one of the ancient charts upon which colorful animals sleep or rage. Those who saw it said that in its illuminations were figures and symbols of the gates. The east gate was that of acceptance of responsibility, the south gate that of the desire to explore, the west gate that of devotion to beauty, and the north gate that of selfless love. But they were not believed. It was said that a city with entryways like these could not exist, because it would be too wonderful. Those who decide such things decided that whoever had seen the map had only imagined it, and the entire matter was forgotten, treated as if it were a dream, and ignored. This, of course, freed it to live forever.

Powered by WordPress