Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Nine is a Vine

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:01 PM

Thursday, August 20, 2015


Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:25 AM

(Continued)  See posts of August 9, 2015.
See also a death on that date.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Nine is a Vine

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 6:50 AM

Backstory:  That phrase in this journal.

““The serpent’s eyes shine
As he wraps around the vine….”
– Don Henley

With Derrida, as usual, playing the role of
the serpent, see a philosophical meditation from
October 9, 2014, by a perceptive and thoughtful Eve
that includes the following passage:

“But, before this and first of all, there is
the resistance posed by the work itself,
the hard kernel formed when the intelligibility
of a universal ‘message’ is joined to the
unintelligible secret of a singularity.”

See as well the word “kernel” here.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Nine is a Vine

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:29 PM

See also Concepts of Space and  “Launched from Cuber.”

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Nine is a Vine

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM


IMAGE- 'Old Man Down the Road' video

See also the above upload date in this journal.

"You've got to pick up every stitch." — Donovan

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Nine is a Vine (continued)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

In honor of a famed architecture critic,
here is a link to Bruno's Atria.

See also Giordano Bruno  in this journal.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Nine is a Vine

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 PM

"We need a Steve Jobs of religion." — Eric Weiner


"Design is how it works." — Steve Jobs


Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Nine

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:00 PM

"Nine maidens kindle the Cauldron by their breathing."

Related material:  Nine Vine.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Nine Stories

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

See a search for the title in this journal.

See also Stories about Nine.

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Vine*

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 9:00 AM

See "Nine is a Vine" and "Hereafter" in this journal.

IMAGE- Matt Damon and the perception of doors in 'Hereafter'

As quoted here last October 23

Margaret Atwood on Lewis Hyde's Trickster Makes This World: Mischief, Myth, and Art

"Trickster is among other things the gatekeeper who opens the door into the next world; those who mistake him for a psychopath never even know such a door exists." (159)

What is "the next world"? It might be the Underworld….

The pleasures of fabulation, the charming and playful lie– this line of thought leads Hyde to the last link in his subtitle, the connection of the trickster to art. Hyde reminds us that the wall between the artist and that American favourite son, the con-artist, can be a thin one indeed; that craft and crafty rub shoulders; and that the words artifice, artifact, articulation  and art  all come from the same ancient root, a word meaning "to join," "to fit," and "to make." (254)  If it’s a seamless whole you want, pray to Apollo, who sets the limits within which such a work can exist.  Tricksters, however, stand where the door swings open on its hinges and the horizon expands: they operate where things are joined together, and thus can also come apart.

* April 7, 2005

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Fragments Against My Ruins, by Odd Thomas

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:42 AM
  1. "Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read"
  2. "Alpha Dog"
  3. "B. J. Leggett is professor emeritus at UT Knoxville"
  4. "Seven is Heaven, Eight is a Gate, Nine is a Vine"

Update of about 6:40 AM ET on June 22, 2016 —

"Que cantaba el rey David."  Happy birthday to Kris Kristofferson.

Sunday, March 20, 2016


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 AM

"Where indeed might the literary scholar expect to find, 
if not in literature, the measure  of modern thought?"

— "Ruins of the Ogdoad," by Michael Keefer

"Seven is Heaven, Eight is a Gate, Nine is a Vine."

— Mnemonic rhyme; author anonymous

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Death Link

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:29 PM

Continued from a post of August 20, 2015 —


(Continued)  See posts of August 9, 2015.
See also a death on that date.

The death link above leads to an obituary for one
"John Henry Holland, Who Computerized Evolution."

A book by Holland published July 13, 2012, by The MIT Press

Signals and Boundaries

Building Blocks for Complex Adaptive Systems

By John H. Holland


Complex adaptive systems (cas), including ecosystems, governments, biological cells, and markets, are characterized by intricate hierarchical arrangements of boundaries and signals. In ecosystems, for example, niches act as semi-permeable boundaries, and smells and visual patterns serve as signals; governments have departmental hierarchies with memoranda acting as signals; and so it is with other cas. Despite a wealth of data and descriptions concerning different cas, there remain many unanswered questions about "steering" these systems. In Signals and Boundaries, John Holland argues that understanding the origin of the intricate signal/border hierarchies of these systems is the key to answering such questions. He develops an overarching framework for comparing and steering cas through the mechanisms that generate their signal/boundary hierarchies.

How nice to have an overarching framework.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

A Dark and Stormy Night

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

This journal on the morning of January 27, 2010,
the day of J. D. Salinger’s death, had a post on
Nietzsche and Heraclitus titled “To Apollo.”

Related material:

“… the wind was noisy the way it is in spooky movies
on the night the old slob with the will gets murdered.”

— From the opening sentence of the first Holden Caulfield
story, published in the Collier’s  of December 22, 1945

See also Peter Matthiessen on Zen,   Salinger and Vedanta,
and Heraclitus in this journal.  Some background—

A quotation from Nietzsche…
(Sämtliche Werke, Kritische Studienausgabe in 15 Bänden  (KSA).
Herausgegeben von Giorgio Colli und Mazzino Montinari.
Berlin: De Gruyter, 1980):

“Nietzsche wrote:

‘Seeing the world as a divine game and beyond good and evil:
in this both the Vedanta and Heraclitus are my predecessors.'”

— KSA vol. 11, page 26, as quoted by André van der Braak
     in a chapter from his 2011 book Nietzsche and Zen

(Darin, dass die Welt ein göttliches Spiel sei
jenseits von Gut und Böse —
habe ich die Vedanta-
und Heraklit zum Vorgänger

Saturday, May 17, 2014

It’s Time for You to…

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:30 PM

See the Field

“There have long been rumors of a mythical Ninth Element
that grants ultimate power to the Wizard who masters it.
The Order of Magick says there is no such thing. But….”

— Website of Magicka: The Ninth Element Novel

William Worthy in Beijing —

This journal on the date of Worthy’s death,
May 4, 2014, had a link to…

    The Holy Field

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

For some context, see Holy Field
and Krauss Grid.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Green Fields

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 PM

Some narrative  notes in memory of a
Bowling Green State University math professor
who reportedly died at 72 on Feb. 13— 

That date in this journal and Green Fields.

See also Nine is a Vine.

Those who prefer mathematics to narrative may 
also prefer to read, instead of the notes above,
some material on the dead professor's specialty,
Diophantine equations. Recommended:
Mordell on Lang and Lang on Mordell as well as
Lang's article titled

"Mordell's Review, Siegel's Letter to Mordell,
Diophantine Geometry, and 20th Century Mathematics

Some background —

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Eve’s Menorah

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 9:00 PM

"Now the serpent was more subtle
than any beast of the field…."
Genesis 3:1

"“The serpent’s eyes shine
As he wraps around the vine….”
Don Henley

"Nine is a vine."
Folk rhyme

Part I

Part II

Part III

Halloween 2005

The image “http://log24.com/log/pix03/030109-gridsmall.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Click images for some background.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Many Mansions

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 3:27 AM

John M. Johansen, architect, who
reportedly died yesterday

"It wasn't until reading Carl Jung,
Joseph Campbell, and Thomas Merton
that I understood what a symbol really was."


"Nine is a vine."

Memory rhyme

(See also that phrase in this journal.)

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Matrix Problem Revolutions

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:28 AM

(The sequel to yesterday's Matrix Problem Reloaded)

Wikipedia on the sci-fi weblog  io9.com

Newitz explained the significance of the name "io9":

"Well, io9s are input-output devices that let you see into the future.
They're brain implants that were outlawed because they drove
anyone who used one insane. We totally made that (device) up
to name the blog."

Jenna Wortham at wired.com, Jan. 2, 2008

From io9.com itself—

"Science fiction writer Ken MacLeod has another term for io9ers.
He calls them rapture fuckers.*"

— io9.com/explanations/

For the relevance of the term "revolutions" in this post's title, see
Wikipedia on Ken MacLeod.

I prefer to associate the number 9 with The Holy Field.



* MacLeod used this phrase in one of his novels, Newton's Wake.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

The Void

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 5:01 AM

(Continued from March 10, 2012)

An inaccuracy in a passage linked to yesterday

"The created universe, the whole of things, is, 
in words from Joyce's Ulysses , 'predicated on the void.'"

The "predicated" phrase seems to be absent from Ulysses .

Joyce does, however, have the following (from ricorso.net)—

William Blake” (March 1912) – cont.: ‘Armed with this two-edged sword, the art of Michaelangelo and the revelations of Swedenborg, Blake killed the dragon of experience and natural wisdom, and, by minimising space and time and denying the existence of memory and the senses, he tried to paint his works on the void of the divine bosom. [See note, infra.]To him, each moment shorter than a pulse-beat was equivalent in its duration to six thousand years, because in such an infinitely short instant the work of the poet is conceived and born. To him, all space larger than a red globule of human blood was visionary, created by the hammer of Los, while in a space smaller than a globule of blood we approach eternity, of which our vegetable world is but a shadow. Not with the eye, then, but beyond the eye, the soul and the supreme move must look, because the eye, which was born in the night while the soul was sleeping in rays of light, will also die in the night. […] The mental process by which Blake arrives at the threshold of the infinite is a similar process. Flying from the infinitely small to the infinitely large, from a drop of blood to the universe of stars, his soul is consumed by the rapidity of flight, and finds itself renewed and winged and immortal on the edge of th dark ocean of God. And althought he based his art on such idealist premises, convinced that eternity was in love with the products of time, this sons of God with the sons of [MS ends here].’ (Critical Writings, 1959, 1966 Edn., pp.221-22; quoted [in part] in Richard Ellmann, James Joyce, 1965 Edn., p.330.) [For full text, see RICORSO Library, “Major Authors”, via index, or direct.] Note – for “void” [supra] , cf. Stephen in “Scylla & Charybdis”: ‘Fatherhood […] is a mystical estate, an apostolic succession, from only begetter to only begotten. On that mystery and not on the madonna which the cunning Italian intellect flung to the mob of Europe the church is founded and founded irremovably because founded, like the world, macro- and microcosm, upon the void.’ (Ulysses, Penguin Edn. 1967, p.207; [my itals.].)

Some academics may prefer a more leftist version of
"predicated on the void"—

Friday, April 6, 2012

For Good Friday

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 3:00 PM

From St. Dismas, a link: http://www.scribd.com/doc/62700189/9/nine *

And in this journal… "Nine is a Vine."

* Aquinas, Ethics, and Philosophy of Religion:
  Metaphysics and Practice ,
by Thomas Hibbs,
  Indiana University Press, Bloomington and Indianapolis, 2007

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Nothing That Is

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM

"The 'one' with whom the reader has identified himself
has now become 'the listener, who listens in the snow';
he has become the snow man, and he knows winter
with a mind of winter, knows it in its strictest reality,
stripped of all imagination and human feeling.
But at that point when he sees the winter scene
reduced to absolute fact, as the object not of the mind,
but of the perfect perceptual eye that sees
'nothing that is not there,' then the scene,
devoid of  its imaginative correspondences,
has become 'the nothing that is.'"

Robert Pack, Wallace Stevens:
An Approach to His Poetry and Thought
New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1958.


IMAGE- The Ninefold Square at Ninevine.net

Monday, December 27, 2010

Church Diamond

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 3:09 PM

IMAGE- The diamond property

Also known, roughly speaking, as confluence  or the Church-Rosser property.

From “NYU Lambda Seminar, Week 2” —

[See also the parent page Seminar in Semantics / Philosophy of Language or:
What Philosophers and Linguists Can Learn From Theoretical Computer Science But Didn’t Know To Ask)

A computational system is said to be confluent, or to have the Church-Rosser or diamond property, if, whenever there are multiple possible evaluation paths, those that terminate always terminate in the same value. In such a system, the choice of which sub-expressions to evaluate first will only matter if some of them but not others might lead down a non-terminating path.

The untyped lambda calculus is confluent. So long as a computation terminates, it always terminates in the same way. It doesn’t matter which order the sub-expressions are evaluated in.

A computational system is said to be strongly normalizing if every permitted evaluation path is guaranteed to terminate. The untyped lambda calculus is not strongly normalizing: ω ω doesn’t terminate by any evaluation path; and (\x. y) (ω ω) terminates only by some evaluation paths but not by others.

But the untyped lambda calculus enjoys some compensation for this weakness. It’s Turing complete! It can represent any computation we know how to describe. (That’s the cash value of being Turing complete, not the rigorous definition. There is a rigorous definition. However, we don’t know how to rigorously define “any computation we know how to describe.”) And in fact, it’s been proven that you can’t have both. If a computational system is Turing complete, it cannot be strongly normalizing.

There is no connection, apart from the common reference to an elementary geometric shape, between the use of “diamond” in the above Church-Rosser sense and the use of “diamond” in the mathematics of (Cullinane’s) Diamond Theory.

Any attempt to establish such a connection would, it seems, lead quickly into logically dubious territory.

Nevertheless, in the synchronistic spirit of Carl Jung and Arthur Koestler, here are some links to such a territory —

 Link One — “Insane Symmetry”  (Click image for further details)—


See also the quilt symmetry in this  journal on Christmas Day.

Link Two — Divine Symmetry

(George Steiner on the Name in this journal on Dec. 31 last year (“All about Eve“)) —

“The links are direct between the tautology out of the Burning Bush, that ‘I am’ which accords to language the privilege of phrasing the identity of God, on the one hand, and the presumptions of concordance, of equivalence, of translatability, which, though imperfect, empower our dictionaries, our syntax, our rhetoric, on the other. That ‘I am’ has, as it were, at an overwhelming distance, informed all predication. It has spanned the arc between noun and verb, a leap primary to creation and the exercise of creative consciousness in metaphor. Where that fire in the branches has gone out or has been exposed as an optical illusion, the textuality of the world, the agency of the Logos in logic—be it Mosaic, Heraclitean, or Johannine—becomes ‘a dead letter.'”

George Steiner, Grammars of Creation

(See also, from Hanukkah this year,  A Geometric Merkabah and The Dreidel is Cast.)

Link Three – Spanning the Arc —

Part A — Architect Louis Sullivan on “span” (see also Kindergarten at Stonehenge)

Part B — “Span” in category theory at nLab —


Also from nLab — Completing Spans to Diamonds

“It is often interesting whether a given span in some partial ordered set can be completed into a diamond. The property of a collection of spans to consist of spans which are expandable into diamonds is very useful in the theory of rewriting systems and producing normal forms in algebra. There are classical results e.g. Newman’s diamond lemma, Širšov-Bergman’s diamond lemma (Širšov is also sometimes spelled as Shirshov), and Church-Rosser theorem (and the corresponding Church-Rosser confluence property).”

The concepts in this last paragraph may or may not have influenced the diamond theory of Rudolf Kaehr (apparently dating from 2007).

They certainly have nothing to do with the Diamond Theory of Steven H. Cullinane (dating from 1976).

For more on what the above San Francisco art curator is pleased to call “insane symmetry,” see this journal on Christmas Day.

For related philosophical lucubrations (more in the spirit of Kaehr than of Steiner), see the New York Times  “The Stone” essay “Span: A Remembrance,” from December 22—

“To understand ourselves well,” [architect Louis] Sullivan writes, “we must arrive first at a simple basis: then build up from it.”

Around 300 BC, Euclid arrived at this: “A point is that which has no part. A line is breadthless length.”

See also the link from Christmas Day to remarks on Euclid and “architectonic” in Mere Geometry.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Some Like It in the Pot

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:59 AM

Seven is Heaven, Eight is a Gate, Nine is a Vine

"And the serpent's eyes shine…."

Thursday, December 31, 2009

All About Eve

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:57 AM

NY Times obituaries on New Year's Eve, 2009-- Carlene Hatcher Polite and David Levine

Genesis 3:24
So he drove out the man; and he placed
at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims,
and a flaming sword which turned every way,
to keep the way of the tree of life.

"The links are direct between the tautology out of the Burning Bush, that 'I am' which accords to language the privilege of phrasing the identity of God, on the one hand, and the presumptions of concordance, of equivalence, of translatability, which, though imperfect, empower our dictionaries, our syntax, our rhetoric, on the other. That 'I am' has, as it were, at an overwhelming distance, informed all predication. It has spanned the arc between noun and verb, a leap primary to creation and the exercise of creative consciousness in metaphor. Where that fire in the branches has gone out or has been exposed as an optical illusion, the textuality of the world, the agency of the Logos in logic—be it Mosaic, Heraclitean, or Johannine—becomes 'a dead letter.'"

George Steiner, Grammars of Creation

Carlene Hatcher Polite–
"Shall I help you?" asked a bass voice.
"If you can," answered a contralto.
"Trace down this tree. Let me show you
men in its stead. Leaf through this bush,
extinguish the burning fire…"
The Flagellants, page 8

"How much story do you want?"
George Balanchine

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday August 30, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM
Nine is
a Vine

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Thursday January 29, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:23 AM
Dagger Definitions

From 'Ulysses,' 1922 first edition, page 178-- 'dagger definitions'
Midrash by a post-bac:

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

“Horseness is
the whatness of allhorse”:
Thingism vs. Thisness

By Amy Peterson

Jacques Derrida once asked the surly and self-revealing question, “Why is it the philosopher who is expected to be easier and not some scientist who is even more inaccessible?” As with philosophers generally, literary critics come with their own inaccessible argot, some terms of which are useful, but most of which are not and only add more loops to literary criticism’s spiraling abstraction. Take for example, James Wood’s neologism thisness (h/t: 3 Quarks Daily):

The project of modernity in Wood’s eyes is largely in revealing the contour and shape, the specific ‘feel’ of that essential mystery. He even borrows a concept from the medieval philosopher Duns Scotus, haecceitas or ‘thisness,’ to explain what he means: ‘By thisness, I mean any detail that draws abstraction toward itself and seems to kill that abstraction with a puff of palpability, any detail that centers our attention with its concretion.’ (my emphasis)

Wood is clearly taking his cue here from the new trend in literary criticism of referring to realism by its etymological meaning, thingism. Where thingism is meant to capture the materialism of late nineteenth and early 20th century Realist literature, thisness, it seems, is meant to capture the basic immaterialism of Modern realist literature. In this, it succeeds. Realism is no longer grounded in the thingism, or material aspect, of reality as it was during the Victorian era. In contemporary literature, it is a “puff of palpability” that hints at reality’s contours but does not disturb our essential understanding of existence as an impalpable mystery. So now we have this term that seems to encompass the Modern approach to reality, but is it useful as an accurate conception of reality (i.e. truth, human existence, and the like), and how are we to judge its accuracy?

I think that, as far as literature is concerned, the test of the term’s accuracy lies in the interpretation of the Modernist texts that Wood champions as truthful but largely abstract depictions of human experience:

‘Kafka’s ‘”Metamorphosis” and Hamsun’s “Hunger” and Beckett’s “Endgame” are not representations of likely or typical human activity but are nevertheless harrowingly truthful texts.’

For brevity’s sake, I’ll pick a passage from a different Modernist text that I think exemplifies the issues involved in the question of thingism and thisness’ reality. In James Joyce’s Ulysses, a pub discussionhttp://www.log24.com/images/asterisk8.gif of art’s purpose arises in which the writer Geoffrey Russell asserts that “Art has to reveal to us ideas, formless spiritual essences”; in his thoughts, Stephen Dedalus prepares to counter this:

Unsheathe your dagger definitions. Horseness is the whatness of allhorse. Streams of tendency and eons they worship. God: noise in the street: very peripatetic. Space: what you damn well have to see. Through spaces smaller than red globules of man’s blood they creepy crawl after [William] Blake’s buttocks into eternity of which this vegetable world is but a shadow. Hold to the now, the here, through which all future plunges to the past.

To give my best translation of Stephen-think: The physical being of the horse (“horseness”) grounds the over-arching, abstract idea of the horse (“allhorse”) in reality (“whatness”). God—the ultimate abstraction—is elusive and rarely manifests himself as a material reality (when listening to children playing earlier in the book, Stephen asserts that God is a “shout in the street”). Space—the material world—must be observed to make sense of abstract ideas (like God). Stephen’s opponents who believe that art must depict the abstract and the essential make claims about existence that have very little basis in material reality so that they can grasp at the divine through the work of such famously fantastic artists as William Blake, whose unrealistic poetry and paintings Stephen evidently holds in little esteem here, though he’s kinder to Blake elsewhere. Finally, the present makes concrete the abstract possibilities of the future by turning them into the realities of the past.

Ulysses elucidates the distinction between abstractly based and materially based realism because, while abstract to be sure, Joyce’s writing is deeply rooted in material existence, and it is this material existence which has given it its lasting meaning and influence. The larger point that I’m trying to make here is that material reality gives meaning to the abstract. (As a corollary, the abstract helps us to make sense of material reality.) There can be no truth without meaning, and there can be no meaning without a material form of existence against which to judge abstract ideas. To argue, as Wood does, that the abstract can produce concrete truths with little reference to material reality is to ignore the mutual nature of the relationship between material reality and truth. The more carefully we observe material reality, the more truth we gain from our abstractions of its phenomena, or, to state it in the vocabulary—though not the style—of literary criticism: thisness is a diluted form of thingism, which means that thisness is productive of fewer (and lesser) truths.

http://www.log24.com/images/asterisk8.gif “Space: what you
  damn well
     have to see.”

Amy Peterson
has failed to see
that the unsheathing
of dagger definitions
takes place not in
a pub, but in
The National Library
of Ireland

The Russell here is not
Geoffrey but rather
George William Russell,
also known as AE.

Related material:

Yesterday’s Log24 entry
for the Feast of
St. Thomas Aquinas,
Actual Being,”
and the four entries
that preceded it.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Friday January 9, 2009

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 5:01 PM
for Mary Karr

"In reality, my prose books
probably sit between
I Was a Teenage Sex Slave
and some other contemporary
memoir written in five minutes…."

Mary Karr in the NY Times
of July 6, 2007

Story of M, Story of N, Story of O

See also
Ballet Blanc
and the true story
0, 1, 2, 3, ….

"In a dream scenario, my memoirs…
would find another shelf.
They’d sit between St. Augustine
  and Nabokov’s Speak, Memory…."

— Mary Karr, loc. cit.

Recall the
mnemonic rhyme
"Nine is a Vine."

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Sunday November 9, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

“Beauty is a riddle.”

— Dostoevsky

“Seven is Heaven
 Eight is a Gate
 Nine is a Vine

— Folk rhyme

Monday, February 25, 2008

Monday February 25, 2008

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 4:00 PM
A System of Symbols

A book from
Yale University Press
discussed in Log24
four years ago today:

Inside Modernism: Relativity Theory, Cubism, Narrative

Click on image for details.

The book is titled
Inside Modernism:
Relativity Theory,
 Cubism, Narrative

For a narrative about relativity
and cubes, see Knight Moves.

Related material:

Geek chic in
this week's New Yorker

"… it takes a system of symbols  
to make numbers precise–
      to 'crystallize' them…."

— and a mnemonic for three
 days in October 2006
following a memorial to
 the Amish schoolchildren
slain that month:

Seven is Heaven,
Eight is a Gate,
Nine is a Vine.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Sunday December 23, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM
The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/grid3x3.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

  “Nine is a Vine.”

Monday, July 30, 2007

Monday July 30, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM
Garden Party
"And the serpent's eyes shine    
As he wraps around the vine…"

In The Garden of Allah

"But not, perhaps,
in the Garden of Apollo":

The Garden of Apollo: The 3x3 Grid

— "Garden Party" —
Log24, April 9, 2007

Related material:

"When, on the last day of February 1953 Francis told her excitedly of the double helix discovery, she took no notice: 'He was always saying that kind of thing.' But when nine years later she heard the news of the Nobel Prize while out shopping, she immediately rushed to the fishmonger for ice to fill the bath and cool the champagne: a party was inevitable."

— Matt Ridley on Odile Crick (The Independent, July 20, 2007), who drew what "may be the most famous [scientific] drawing of the 20th century, in that it defines modern biology," according to Terrence J. Sejnowski, a neuroscientist at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla quoted by Adam Bernstein in The Washington Post, July 21, 2007

See also "Game Boy"
(Log24 on the Feast
of the Transfiguration–
August 6, 2006):

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060806-Einsatz.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Thursday June 14, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:00 PM
A Time
for Remembering

June 9, the birthday of
Aaron Sorkin, a writer
mentioned in recent
Log24 entries, was also
the birthday of writer
Patricia Cornwell.

An illustration
from that date:

The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/grid3x3.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Cornwell's first book was
a biography of
Ruth Bell Graham,
A Time for Remembering.

"Seven is heaven,
Eight is a gate,
Nine is a vine."

Monday, October 9, 2006

Monday October 9, 2006

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 AM
To Apollo
The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/grid3x3.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

"This is the garden of Apollo,
the field of Reason…."
John Outram, architect

To Apollo (10/09/02)
Art Wars: Apollo and Dionysus
Balanchine's Birthday

Art Theory for Yom Kippur

A Form

A Form, continued

Deep Game
Gameplayers of Zen
And So To Bed
Translation Plane for Rosh Hashanah
Derrida Dead
The Nine
From Tate to Plato
Art History
A Miniature Rosetta Stone
High Concept
High Concept, Continued
Analogical Train of Thought
Today's Sermon: Magical Thinking
Seven is Heaven, Eight is a Gate
Nine is a Vine
Apollo and Christ
Hamilton's Whirligig
On Beauty
Sunday Morning
New Haven
Washington Ballet
Catholic Schools Sermon
The Logic of Apollo
Game Boy
Art Wars Continued: The Krauss Cross
Art Wars Continued: Pandora's Box
The Pope in Plato's Cave
Today's Birthdays
Symbology 101

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Saturday September 16, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:07 AM

Pandora's Box

Part I:
The Pandora Cross

"There is no painter in the West who can be unaware of the symbolic power of the cruciform shape and the Pandora's box of spiritual reference that is opened once one uses it."

— Rosalind Krauss in "Grids"

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060916-Art.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

(See Log24, Sept. 13)

Part II:
The Opening

Remarks by the Pope on Sept. 12,
as reported by the Vatican:

Faith, Reason, and the University:
Memories and Reflections

For the result of
the Pope's remarks, see
a transcript of
 yesterday's Google News
and the following
from BBC today:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060916-Benedict16.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Click to enlarge the screenshot.

Part III:

The New Yorker (issue of June 5, 2006) on the late Oriana Fallaci:

"In September [2005], she had a private audience with Pope Benedict XVI at Castel Gandolfo, his summer residence outside Rome. She had criticized John Paul II for making overtures to Muslims, and for not condemning terrorism heartily enough, but she has hopes for Joseph Ratzinger."

For further details, see yesterday's Log24.

Part IV:
The Sibyl's Song

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060916-MC7.GIF” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

— From The Magic Circle,
 a spiritual narrative
 by Katherine Neville

For more on "the long-mute voice
of the past," on "darkness beneath
the volcano," and on uncorking,
see Glory Season and Harrowing.

Related material from
Log24 on Dec. 2, 2005:

Benedict XVI, before he became Pope:

"… a purely harmonious concept of beauty is not enough…. Apollo, who for Plato's Socrates was 'the God' and the guarantor of unruffled beauty as 'the truly divine' is absolutely no longer sufficient."

A symbol of Apollo:

IMAGE- The ninefold square

and a related
Christian symbol,

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the Greek Cross
(adapted from
Ad Reinhardt).

Moral of the Pandora Cross:

"Nine is a very powerful Nordic number."
— Katherine Neville in The Magic Circle…

quoted in The Nine, a Log24 entry
for Hermann Weyl's birthday,
November 9, 2004.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Monday July 31, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:00 AM

For the feast of
St. Ignatius Loyola…

Final Arrangements,


“Now you has jazz.”
High Society, 1956 

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060731-Deaths.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

— Today’s online New York Times

Also from today’s
New York Times

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/060731-Kreuger.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Kurt Kreuger
in the 1945 film
“Paris Underground.”
Kurt Kreuger,
a German-born actor
who reluctantly played
Nazi soldiers
in many films
about World War II,
died July 12 in
Beverly Hills, Calif.
He was 89.

Log24, Wednesday,
July 12, 2006

Band Numbers

“Some friends
 of mine
 are in
 this band…”

— David

Seven is Heaven
Eight is a Gate,
Nine is a Vine.

The Prime Powers

Related material:

A Log24 entry commemorating
the murder of six Jesuits
in El Salvador.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Wednesday July 12, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

Band Numbers

“Some friends of mine
are in this band…”
— David Auburn, Proof

Seven is Heaven
Eight is a Gate,
Nine is a Vine.

The Prime Powers

Monday, July 10, 2006

Monday July 10, 2006

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:48 AM
Knock, Knock, Knockin'

An obituary in this morning's New York Times suggests a flashback. The Times says that Paul Nelson, 69, a music critic once famously ripped off by the young Bobby Zimmerman, was found dead in his Manhattan apartment last Wednesday. Here is a Log24 entry for that date. (The obituary, by Jon Pareles, notes that Nelson "prized hard-boiled detective novels and film noir.")

Wednesday, July 5, 2006  7:35 PM

Dance of the Numbers

A music review:

"… in the mode of
 a film noir murder mystery"

"For Bach, as Sellars explains,
 death is not an exit but an entrance."

Seven is Heaven,
Eight is a Gate,
Nine is a Vine.

Wednesday, July 5, 2006

Wednesday July 5, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:35 PM

Dance of the Numbers

A music review:

“… in the mode of a film noir murder mystery

“For Bach, as Sellars explains,
 death is not an exit but an entrance.”

Seven is Heaven
Eight is a Gate,
Nine is a Vine.

Saturday, January 7, 2006

Saturday January 7, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:09 PM

Strange Attractor

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/051123-Star.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Epiphany Star

(See also the star as a
“spider” symbol in the
stories of Fritz Leiber.)

For Heinrich Harrer,
who died today…

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06/060107-WhiteSpider.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Harrer was one of the 1938 team that first climbed the north face (the Nordwand, also called the Mordwand, or “death” face) of the Eiger.

Wikipedia on the north face of the Eiger:

“A portion of the upper face is called ‘The White Spider,’ as snow-filled cracks radiating from an ice-field resemble the legs of a spider. Harrer used the name for the title of his book about his successful climb, Die Weisse Spinne (translated… as The White Spider).”

Connoisseur of Chaos,”
by Wallace Stevens,
from Parts of a World (1942):


After all the pretty contrast of life and death
Proves that these opposite things partake of one,
At least that was the theory, when bishops’ books
Resolved the world. We cannot go back to that.
The squirming facts exceed the squamous mind,
If one may say so . And yet relation appears,
A small relation expanding like the shade
Of a cloud on sand, a shape on the side of a hill.


The pensive man . . . He sees that eagle float
For which the intricate Alps are a single nest.

Related material:

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Saturday December 24, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM
Nine is a Vine

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/051224-Stars.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

The figures are:
A symbol of Apollo from
Balanchine’s Birthday and
A Minature Rosetta Stone,

a symbol of pure reason from
Visible Mathematics and
Analogical Train of Thought,

a symbol of Venus from
Why Me?
To Graves at the Winter Solstice,

and, finally, a more
down-to-earth symbol,
adapted from a snowflake in

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/051224-RebaCard2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

an online Christmas card.

Those who prefer their
theological art on the scary side
may enjoy the
Christian Snowflake
link in the comments on
the “Logos” entry of
Orthodox Easter (May 1), 2005.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Saturday November 12, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM
Nine is a Vine

The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/quat-1.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

of a quaternion

Related material:

“Oh, I wasn’t about to hole up
in a monastery.  I still wanted–
  What did I want?
      I wanted a Roc’s egg….”

Robert A. Heinlein
  Glory Road

   And So To Bed.

(Log24, St. Peter’s Day, 2004)

Friday, July 1, 2005

Friday July 1, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 8:00 PM

Big Dreams

“For more than a century, Los Angeles has been synonymous with big dreams. The Australian writer and critic Clive James said it this way. ‘Call Los Angeles any dirty name you like… The fact remains that you are already living in it before you get there.'”

— Today’s inaugural address by Mayor Villaraigosa

See also the previous entry.

Update of 2:24 PM July 2:

Yesterday afternoon I picked up a copy of George Steiner’s Grammars of Creation I had ordered.  A check of Amazon.com to see what others had to say about this book yielded the following:

“Steiner’s account of Hope as something exclusively transcendental and relative to the future is poor and superficial: the person who hopes is not only walking ‘towards’ Eternal Life, but is already walking ‘in’ Eternal Life, walking the Kingdom.”

— Matías Cordero, Santiago, Chile

See also an entry of April 7, 2005, Nine is a Vine.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Sunday May 22, 2005

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 4:09 PM

The Diamond in the Labyrinth

From the labyrinth of Solitude:

  1. An Invariant Feast
  2. Columbia News obituary of Robert D. Cumming
  3. Solitude

    (Phenomenology and Deconstruction, Vol 4
    by Robert Denoon Cumming)

    On page 13 of Solitude —

    From Heidegger’s “Letter on Humanism” —
    “… so long as philosophy merely busies itself with continually obstructing the possibility of admission to the subject of thinking– that is, the truth of being– it escapes the danger of ever being broken against the hardness of that subject.  Thus ‘philosophizing’ about the shattering is separated by an abyss from a thinking that is shattered.”

    This suggests a search for
    “Heidegger” + “diamond,” which yields —

  4. The Diamond at the End of Time,
    which leads to
  5. Orson Welles Interviews Jilly Dybka,
    which leads to
  6. Poetry Hut Blog,
    which leads to

  7. Fair Territory, by Jilly Dybka,
    which contains the following —
  8. The Quickening

    I hold my breath, the plane’s
       wheels under me
    still suspended in the minutes after
    takeoff, when the planet’s brute gravity
    statistically can cause a disaster.
    We are flying low enough that I scan
    civilization in miniature.
    Blue pill swimming pools, and
       roadways that fan
    out like ribbons in the wind. On the sure
    crust, too, a baseball diamond.
       Young boys race
    across the tilted surface, mute and small,
    kicking up red dust. First base, Second base,
    Third Base, Home. We ascend into nightfall
    and beneath the broken stars one kid bunts.
    I remember I was a rookie once.

  9. From yesterday’s online New York Times:

    The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050521-ConeyIslandCrash.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Nine is a Vine.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Saturday May 14, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:00 PM

Today’s New York Times:

“Horton Marlais Davies, Putnam professor emeritus of religion at Princeton and an author of many books about church history, died on Wednesday at his home in Princeton, N.J. He was 89…. Dr. Davies specialized in the impact of Christianity on the arts.”

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050514-Cover2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

A book edited by Horton Davies,
apparently first published by Eerdmans
at Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1990

The Catholic Encyclopedia (1908) on the communion of saints:

“One cannot read the parables of the kingdom (Matt., xiii) without perceiving its corporate nature and the continuity which links together the kingdom in our midst and the kingdom to come. The nature of that communion, called by St. John a fellowship with one another (‘a fellowship with us’ — I John, i, 3) because it is a fellowship with the Father, and with his Son, and compared by him to the organic and vital union of the vine and its branches (John, xv), stands out….”
Related material:

Religious art in the entry Art History of 11 AM Wednesday, May 11, the date of Davies’s death.  See also the following direct and indirect links from that entry:

To a cruciform artifact from the current film Kingdom of Heaven, to an entry quoting John xv, Nine is a Vine, and to Art Theory for Yom Kippur.

For less-religious material on the number nine, see the entries and links in the Log24 archive for June 17-30, 2004.

From Rosalind Krauss, “Grids”:

“If we open any tract–
Plastic Art and Pure Plastic Art
or The Non-Objective World,
for instance– we will find that
Mondrian and Malevich are not
discussing canvas or pigment or
graphite or any other form of
matter.  They are talking about
Being or Mind or Spirit.”


Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Wednesday May 11, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:00 AM
Art History

Reuters – "Joe Grant, a legendary Disney artist who designed the Queen/Witch in 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,' died of a heart attack while doing what he loved most, drawing, the Walt Disney Co. said Monday.


Grant, 96, died at his home in the Los Angeles suburb of Glendale last Friday while sitting at his drawing board."

"With a little effort, anything can be
shown to connect with anything else:
existence is infinitely cross-referenced."

— Opening sentence of
Martha Cooley's The Archivist

From Log24 last Friday,
a Greek cross:

Pandora's box, according to Rosalind Krauss

Click on picture for details.
And from Sunday, May 1
(Orthodox Easter)

Rosalind Krauss,

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050501-Krauss.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Columbia University's
Meyer Schapiro Professor
of Modern Art and Theory:

"There is no painter in the West
who can be unaware of
the symbolic power of
the cruciform shape1
and the Pandora's box

The Wicked Queen's Box

of spiritual reference2
that is opened
once one uses it."

Click on pictures for details.
Related material:
Nine is a Vine3.

1, 2, 3 Today's birthdays:

1 Natasha Richardson, born 11 May 1963,
   Jedi wife and costar of Nell
2 Martha Quinn, born 11 May 1959,
   MTV wit
3 Frances Fisher, born 11 May 1952,
   dazzling redhead

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Saturday April 30, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM
Nine is a Vine,

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/HopeOfHeaven1938-2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Larry Gelbart on the film
Up Close and Personal:
“A Brenda Starr is Born.”

Related material:
O’Hara’s Fingerpost,
Eight is a Gate,
Art Wars,
In the Details,
and the words
“White Christmas.”

Thursday, April 7, 2005

Thursday April 7, 2005

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:00 AM
Nine is a Vine

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

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/HopeOfHeaven1938.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

 “Mathematical realism holds that mathematical entities exist independently of the human mind.  Thus humans do not invent mathematics, but rather discover it, and any other intelligent beings in the universe would presumably do the same. The term Platonism is used because such a view is seen to parallel Plato’s belief in a “heaven of ideas”, an unchanging ultimate reality that the everyday world can only imperfectly approximate. Plato’s view probably derives from Pythagoras, and his followers the Pythagoreans, who believed that the world was, quite literally, built up by the numbers. This idea may have even older origins that are unknown to us.” — Wikipedia


Related material:

In memory of Jesus of Nazareth,
the “true vine,”
who, some historians believe,
died on this date:

The Crucifixion of John O’Hara.

In memory of the Anti-Vine:

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

See Dogma and
Heaven, Hell,
and Hollywood.
Related material:

The Usual Suspects


Thursday, December 26, 2002:

Holly for Miss Quinn 

Tonight’s site music is for Stephen Dedalus
and Miss Quinn, courtesy of Eithne Ní Bhraonáin. 

Miss Quinn



Sunday, April 3, 2005

Sunday April 3, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:26 PM

Pennsylvania Lottery Daily Number

for yesterday evening,
Saturday, April 2, 2005:


Related material:

From 6/13 2004

An 8-rayed star:

Another 8-rayed star:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/050403-StPetersSq.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

St. Peter’s Square in Rome
From 6/13 2003

A link to a 2001 First Things essay,

The End of Endings:

“Here is the heart of the matter:

The underwriting of Hebraic–Hellenic literacy, of the normative analogue between divine and mortal acts of creation, was, in the fullest sense, theological. As was the wager (pronounced lost in deconstruction and postmodernism) on ultimate possibilities of accord between sign and sense, between word and meaning, between form and phenomenality. The links are direct between the tautology out of the Burning Bush, that ‘I am’ which accords to language the privilege of phrasing the identity of God, on the one hand, and the presumptions of concordance, of equivalence, of translatability, which, though imperfect, empower our dictionaries, our syntax, our rhetoric, on the other. That ‘I am’ has, as it were, at an overwhelming distance, informed all predication. It has spanned the arc between noun and verb, a leap primary to creation and the exercise of creative consciousness in metaphor. Where that fire in the branches has gone out or has been exposed as an optical illusion, the textuality of the world, the agency of the Logos in logic—be it Mosaic, Heraclitean, or Johannine—becomes ‘a dead letter.’

That passage bears rereading.”

— Richard John Neuhaus quoting
   George Steiner’s Grammars of Creation
   (Yale University Press, April 1, 2001)

Friday, September 17, 2004

Friday September 17, 2004

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , — m759 @ 12:00 PM

God is in…
The Details

From an entry for Aug. 19, 2003 on
conciseness, simplicity, and objectivity:

Above: Dr. Harrison Pope, Harvard professor of psychiatry, demonstrates the use of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale "block design" subtest.

Another Harvard psychiatrist, Armand Nicholi, is in the news lately with his book The Question of God: C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud Debate God, Love, Sex, and the Meaning of Life.





For the meaning of the Old-Testament logos above, see the remarks of Plato on the immortality of the soul at


For the meaning of the New-Testament logos above, see the remarks of R. P. Langlands at

The Institute for Advanced Study.

On Harvard and psychiatry: see

The Crimson Passion:
A Drama at Mardi Gras

(February 24, 2004)

This is a reductio ad absurdum of the Harvard philosophy so eloquently described by Alston Chase in his study of Harvard and the making of the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski.  Kaczynski's time at Harvard overlapped slightly with mine, so I may have seen him in Cambridge at some point.  Chase writes that at Harvard, the Unabomber "absorbed the message of positivism, which demanded value-neutral reasoning and preached that (as Kaczynski would later express it in his journal) 'there is no logical justification for morality.'" I was less impressed by Harvard positivism, although I did benefit from a course in symbolic logic from Quine.  At that time– the early 60's– little remained at Harvard of what Robert Stone has called "our secret culture," that of the founding Puritans– exemplified by Cotton and Increase Mather.

From Robert Stone, A Flag for Sunrise:

"Our secret culture is as frivolous as a willow on a tombstone.  It's a wonderful thing– or it was.  It was strong and dreadful, it was majestic and ruthless.  It was a stranger to pity.  And it's not for sale, ladies and gentlemen."

Some traces of that culture:

A web page
in Australia:

A contemporary
Boston author:

Click on pictures for details.

A more appealing view of faith was offered by PBS on Wednesday night, the beginning of this year's High Holy Days:

Armand Nicholi: But how can you believe something that you don't think is true, I mean, certainly, an intelligent person can't embrace something that they don't think is true — that there's something about us that would object to that.

Jeremy Fraiberg: Well, the answer is, they probably do believe it's true.

Armand Nicholi: But how do they get there? See, that's why both Freud and Lewis was very interested in that one basic question. Is there an intelligence beyond the universe? And how do we answer that question? And how do we arrive at the answer of that question?

Michael Shermer: Well, in a way this is an empirical question, right? Either there is or there isn't.

Armand Nicholi: Exactly.

Michael Shermer: And either we can figure it out or we can't, and therefore, you just take the leap of faith or you don't.

Armand Nicholi: Yeah, now how can we figure it out?

Winifred Gallagher: I think something that was perhaps not as common in their day as is common now — this idea that we're acting as if belief and unbelief were two really radically black and white different things, and I think for most people, there's a very — it's a very fuzzy line, so that —

Margaret Klenck: It's always a struggle.

Winifred Gallagher: Rather than — I think there's some days I believe, and some days I don't believe so much, or maybe some days I don't believe at all.

Doug Holladay: Some hours.

Winifred Gallagher: It's a, it's a process. And I think for me the big developmental step in my spiritual life was that — in some way that I can't understand or explain that God is right here right now all the time, everywhere.

Armand Nicholi: How do you experience that?

Winifred Gallagher: I experience it through a glass darkly, I experience it in little bursts. I think my understanding of it is that it's, it's always true, and sometimes I can see it and sometimes I can't. Or sometimes I remember that it's true, and then everything is in Technicolor. And then most of the time it's not, and I have to go on faith until the next time I can perhaps see it again. I think of a divine reality, an ultimate reality, uh, would be my definition of God.



Gallagher seemed to be the only participant in the PBS discussion that came close to the Montessori ideals of conciseness, simplicity, and objectivity.  Dr. Montessori intended these as ideals for teachers, but they seem also to be excellent religious values.  Just as the willow-tombstone seems suited to Geoffrey Hill's style, the Pythagorean sangaku pictured above seems appropriate to the admirable Gallagher.

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