Re: MD The final solution or new frustration.

From: Scott R (
Date: Thu Oct 02 2003 - 01:54:14 BST

  • Next message: Richard Loggins: "Re: MD Intellectual level - New letter from Pirsig"


    > > > [Platt prev:],
    > > > Intellect (thinking) is not a response to DQ. Thinking is the
    > > > patterning of pure experience (Quality) into static symbolic forms.
    > > > What responds to DQ is not intellect but a vague sense of something
    > > > better. One's initial reaction to great art (or getting off a hot
    > > > stove) isn't intellectual. It's immediate, involuntary, instinctive,
    > > > intuitive, visceral, spontaneous. Thinking about experience is
    > > > secondary. Thinking about thinking is even further removed from DQ.
    > [Scott prev]:
    > > ????. Apparently, the fourth and highest level of SQ is the furthest
    > > removed from DQ. Something's backwards.
    > [Platt]:
    > If you think being a mindless lion is better than being a mindful
    > human, then I'd suggest you have something backwards.

    I don't think that. Apparently you do, since a lion will jump off the stove
    just as fast as a human but will not move away from DQ because the lion does
    not think about it.

    > The creative
    > force of DQ makes for higher quality patterns. A pattern with the
    > ability to think is better than a pattern that can't. It's better for
    > doctor to kill a germ than a germ to kill a doctor. It's better to
    > think independently than to simply regurgitate a party line.

    I agree with this. But if thinking just takes one away from DQ why do you
    agree with it?

    "The creative force of DQ makes for higher quality patterns". If you throw a
    dozen lions or people on a hot stove, they will all jump off immediately.
    What's creative about that? The only way you'll get anything different in
    this situation is if someone thinks "I will not jump off", and has enough
    mindfulness to carry it off.

    > Platt:
    > Maybe you can explain the passage in Chp. 9 of Lila where Pirsig talks
    > about DQ in relation to a baby of which the following is a brief
    > excerpt:
    > "From the baby's point of view, something, he knows not what, compels
    > attention. This generalized "something,' Whitehead's "dim
    > apprehension,' is Dynamic Quality."

    To the baby it is, since the baby is experiencing these things for the first
    time. Grownups are supposed to "put childish things behind them" and, I
    would think, focus on the cutting edge of DQ: the intellect.

    > Not "supremely mindful" would you say? If you'll review what Pirsig
    > says about the nature of DQ in Ch.9 (the song, the heart attack, the
    > baby) you'll see that "mindful" has nothing to do with it--until after
    > the event.

    I am referring to "mindful" in the sense that Zen does: to be as aware as
    possible of what is "in your mind" at the moment, whether that is the pain
    from a hot stove or thinking about Quality.

    > As for DQ being a "static response," you're right in the sense that we
    > know the quality of an experience before thinking about it:

    We know the experience of our sense perceptions before we think about them,
    but we do not know the experience of our thinking before we think.

    > "When the person who sits on the stove first discovers his low-Quality
    > situation, the front edge of his experience is Dynamic. He does not
    > think, "This stove is hot," and then make a rational decision to get
    > off. A "dim perception of he knows not what" gets him off Dynamically.
    > Later he generates static patterns of thought to explain the
    > situation." (5)
    > Call it a biological reflex if you wish. I know of nothing in the MOQ
    > that suggests our response to Quality (experience) is supernatural.

    I don't know what you mean by supernatural.

    > Finally, I'm I right in assuming you believe in Berkeley's philosophy
    > of idealism?

    No. If you want the name of an old philosopher that I do think I am close to
    I would say Plotinus. Or Coleridge. Not Berkeley.

    - Scott

    MOQ.ORG -
    Mail Archives:
    Aug '98 - Oct '02 -
    Nov '02 Onward -
    MD Queries -

    To unsubscribe from moq_discuss follow the instructions at:

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Thu Oct 02 2003 - 01:56:08 BST