Re: MD Undeniable Facts

From: Platt Holden (
Date: Thu Apr 24 2003 - 16:14:50 BST

  • Next message: Paul Turner: "MD What is a living being?"

    Hi Johnny:
    > >I don't agree that wanting to break free from static patterns "maligns"
    > >static patterns in any way.
    > "Thumbing ones nose" at morality is disrespectful, isn't it? As Sam says,
    > people have a tendency to fetishize DQ and ignore SQ, and to treat SQ as an
    > annoying parent, recognizing only that it is necessary for our existence
    > but not respecting it at all.

    Not many people I know "fetishize DQ." Most are stuck in familiar
    patterns and enjoy their routines.
    > >I'm denigrating morality? How so?
    > Denying that things should do what they should do. Obviously false, right?
    > Yet this "why should I?" mentality has taken hold and is breaking apart
    > the whole ontological meaning of everything! The damage "why should I?"
    > causes is infinitely worse than possible effects of misunderstood
    > post-modernism (wanton "why should I?"s are one of those side effects, but
    > post modernism answers that, for anyone listening: because the culture says
    > so). Implying that anything thing that a thing probably will do, it
    > shouldn't do, is destroying morality, aka the universe, at the very core.
    > Saying that it would be better for things to break the moral patterns that
    > define them denigrates morality. The whole point of morality is that it is
    > good for patterns to be followed, for expectations to be made real. That's
    > the ontological mechanism of morality.

    To question the "shoulds" of the prevailing culture is the key to a better
    life. History proves that again and again, beginning with "Why should I
    not eat this apple?"
    > >OK, what's the "law of art?"
    > Get laid, be cool, express yourself, etc, all in some sort of artful
    > balance. Do what artists should do.

    "Get laid" is an important part of the code of art? That's a new one on
    me. I missed my calling.

    > Well, bands need a new record every couple of years. I'm not sure that
    > music is better than it ever was, in some sort of "absolute sense." My dad
    > would certainly not think so. How would you measure that?

    Maybe measurement is the problem between us. Not everything
    worthwhile can be measured you know, like ideas, for instance.

    > >If all change is a result of static patterns, where did the first static
    > >pattern come from?
    > The first static pattern was the Word. A word is an expectation of
    > meaning.

    So the universe was created from an "expectation of meaning." That's a
    new one on me, too.
    > The first word was a sort of meta word that defined wordness itself, or,
    > expectation itself, static pattern itself, morality itself (those are all
    > synonyms, apologies for excitedly typing them over and over). "Word" is
    > the only thing in the universe that is what it means, besides the whole
    > universe itself, perhaps (but they are the same!). Everything else
    > involves a little flux being its meaning and its being, they adjust to each
    > other constantly and only achieve near correlation. Where the word came
    > from requires perhaps more peyote than I'm prepared to eat this early in
    > the afternoon. But thinking of it as expectation itself makes for an easy
    > answer: it naturally existed because it should exist, it is the nature of
    > expectation that it come into being. How do you answer that "where did it
    > come from?" one?

    I need some peyote to comprehend this.
    > > > Aren't you a
    > > > determinist like me and our mutual favorite Schopenhauer?
    > >
    > >I like what Schopenhauer says about the central role of beauty in the
    > >world. I'm not a determinist.
    > Ah! Well, have you read his essay on Freedom of the Will? He's at his
    > crabby best. How could you not be a determinist? It is unreasonable.
    There's nothing reasonable about the effect Rachmaninov's 3rd piano
    concerto has on me.

    > > > Why does not every new record strike us as great, then?
    > >
    > >Because not every new record is any good.
    > Based on static patterns, obviously, right?

    Wrong. Based on your innate sense of beauty whose "pattern" has yet
    to be discovered. Otherwise, every painting would be a Rembrandt.
    > > > The ones that we
    > > > like are ones that fit our existing static patterns and extend them,
    > > > affirming our expectations of what good music is.
    > >
    > >To some extent, yes. But once in awhile a whole new and totally
    > >unexpected sound blows you away. That's DQ.
    > It may be "DQ" to you, but to the band that put it together, it was lots of
    > work and practice, and every single note is there because the writer's
    > brain was influenced by static patterns to put it there.

    DQ is always "to you."

    > > > On those occasions when
    > > > we hear something totally foreign to our ears and we like it, it is
    > >because
    > > > we hear something in it that isn't foreign, some more fundamental
    > >pattern
    > > > that we hadn't heard under the artifice of our favorite genre.
    > >
    > >Can you site an example?
    > Oh, listening to an album of Austrailian Aboriginal music, you may hear a
    > basic human quality that seems pure and good. It is there in your Eminem
    > too, but buried under lots of other patterns that we focus our attention
    > on.

    Whatever turns you on. I'm not into rock or jungle music.

    > >Your whole philosophy boils down to, "There's nothing new under the
    > >sun."
    > There is nothing new under the sun.
    So, I was right.

    > > > What my metaphics precludes is unreason.
    > >
    > >What your metaphysics precludes is evolution.
    > How so? Evolution is itself a static pattern and all patterns have been
    > changing and evolving constantly as they interact with others.

    It's the little word "interact" that's the key. Why interact? Why not just
    stay the same? That would be the most moral from your point of view
    wouldn't it?
    > >What's nice about static Quality is we wouldn't be here without it. Nor
    > >would I be here without Dynamic Quality. As Pirsig says, both are needed.
    > >But, given a choice, I'll always favor the new and the better over the old
    > >and adequate.
    > Of course, you've been marketed to for 40 years. The new and better come
    > about fast enough that we don't need to tear down SQ patterns in general in
    > order to speed their replacement by just anything someone says is better.
    > It is bad for the environment, consolidates power in corporations, and
    > distracts us from loving each other and appreciating life.

    Oh, oh. Enter good old stale, static left-wing political thinking.
    > That said, there are changes that are called for, in my opinion, but they
    > are called for by static values: we need to change our driving and energy
    > habits, we need to loosen the grip of corporations on our government, we
    > need to remember the purpose of marriage, and a law to prevent genetic
    > engineering and manufacture of individual humans according to the needs of
    > the Giant. (Hmm, I suppose those are all 'backwards' changes, how about
    > "we need a new system of electronic cash, that eliminates banks and
    > interest (usary) and taxes" - I got one if you want to hear it)
    I'm all for eliminating taxes. I never heard a liberal say that. :-)


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