josh blog

Ordinary language is all right.

One could divide humanity into two classes:
those who master a metaphor, and those who hold by a formula.
Those with a bent for both are too few, they do not comprise a class.

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28 Aug '19 08:22:19 AM

A member of the clergy is advising a protege of some sort; a priest and a priest, I want to say, but the latter is a woman and I am next to the Catholic school so I assume all spiritual discourse—and there is a fair bit—in the vicinity is Catholic in nature, no doubt wrongly, yet given this she can hardly also be a priest, but in any case, he advises her as if her office differs in no way from his own, as if she has embarked upon some work of a pastoral nature, writing sermons against a liturgical clock and counseling a mass of parishioners, and what he stresses most, repeatedly, is: in the mornings, read, read. Read: what they call self-care now. He sounds like someone who knows from self-neglect.

22 Aug '19 05:39:51 AM

'… almost two and a half years after his death, the sadness I once felt thinking about him has been replaced entirely by gratitude.'

14 Aug '19 05:33:58 AM

'… the ground beneath me vanished when I read the news…'

11 Aug '19 10:49:17 PM

'They move with murmured intentions.'

20 Jul '19 11:47:41 PM

'… it was very careful and considerate of the other musicians, and it inspired a different sort of listening in me.'

20 Jul '19 06:34:49 AM

'I enjoy it, but I don't really believe it.'

19 Jul '19 04:18:30 AM

'The poets are not those who write poems, but those who know which of the things they write are poems.'

14 Jul '19 03:44:48 AM

'Although Descartes' cogito is created as a concept, it has presuppositions. This is not in the way that one concept presupposes others (for example, "man" presupposes "animal" and "rational"); the presuppositions here are implicit, subjective, and preconceptual, forming an image of thought: everyone knows what thinking means. Everyone can think; everyone wants the truth. Are these the only two elements—the concept and the plane of immanence or image of thought that will be occupied by concepts of the same group (the cogito and the other concepts that can be connected to it)? Is there something else, in Descartes's case, other than the created cogito and the presupposed image of thought? Actually there is something else, somewhat mysterious, that appears from time to time or that shows through and seems to have a hazy existence halfway between concept and preconceptual plane, passing from one to the other. In the present case it is the Idiot: it is the Idiot who says "I" and sets up the cogito but who also has the subjective presuppositions or lays out the plane. The idiot is the private thinker, in contrast to the public teacher (the schoolman): the teacher refers constantly to taught concepts (man–rational animal), whereas the private thinker forms a concept with innate forces that everyone possesses on their own account by right ("I think"). Here is a very strange type of persona who wants to think, and who thinks for himself, by the "natural light." The idiot is a conceptual persona. The question "Are there precursors of the cogito?" can be made more precise. Where does the persona of the idiot come from, and how does it appear? Is it in a Christian atmosphere, but in reaction against the "scholastic" organization of Christianity and the authoritarian organization of the church? Can traces of this persona already be found in Saint Augustine? Is Nicholas of Cusa the one who accords the idiot full status as a conceptual persona? This would be why he is close to the cogito but still unable to crystallize it as a concept. In any case, the history of philosophy must go through these personae, through their changes according to planes and through their variety according to concepts. Philosophy constantly brings conceptual personae to life; it gives life to them.'

9 Jul '19 02:36:27 AM

'By voluntarily giving up the freedom to do whatever momentarily comes to mind, we are, as a result, free of all that momentarily comes to mind.'