Wednesday, September 30, 2009


how are you going to stop chimpanzees cats dogs starlings and whales from becoming human ... in an evolved society wouldn't the stones talk ... isn't all the universe headed to one common perfection and headed there mentally ... well maybe not ... maybe the increments are punctuated by perfections ... maybe the one true perfection at the end of time is not the only one allowed ... maybe there's a metaphysical principle of subsidiarity as well as one in politics in ethics and in economics and psychology too ... maybe perfection is too explosive a being too triumphant a force to be completely contained and it has to pop up every second or so in space as often as it can ... and still be perfect that is ... and it gives to all life and matter moments when everything's OK everything's just right ... and the only thing that spoils it is the arrow of time ... the thing itself is if anything the target of time with decades centuries and eons stuck to it like arrows and javelins in a shield on the arm of the warrior running across the plain in obedience to the god calling over his shoulder

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


myth is a necessary step on the stair ... not a necessary thing we humans do ... it would be there whether we stepped on it or not and we ignore or decry it if we don't mind being miserable benighted and dull all the days of our lives ... but we do mind ... hence the entertainment business overripe with melodrama ... that is too obvious stereotypes wannabe archetypes ... or for that matter the news business too with its sounds bites slogans and political caricatures ... if you want to board the plane you have to climb the stairs ... if you want to understand the past you have to step into the appropriate myths ... fall through the steps and enter the plane through the belly before you live in the clouds ... walk up and down the aisles sit in seats at random get to know the crew join a passengers' association ... look out the window and believe what you see ... look isn't it odd on both sides a wing ... no simple levitation or ascension for us ... but wings ... therefore something to do with wind work and finally grace ... but no solo flights either ... this is a big plane and no take-off till we're full ... each passenger strapped in ... each with a story and each telling it ... a chorus of myth and hallelujah

Monday, September 28, 2009


I do not know them in their identities and cannot claim to know them personally ... I claim to know them in the spirit ... as Lincoln ... the representative man of his age ... the aristotelian hero of moderation ... the cavalier the puritan and the new man of the west to decide between them and his name is Lincoln ... that kind of moderation ... the puritan's drive for excellence the cavalier's savoir-faire and good grace ... the man of law the man of emotion of compassion ... twirled together by society ... twisted together by war ... sucked into the vortex fallen into the abyss ... a shaft of light from the center of the one to the heart of the other ... ecce homo ... behold the man of myth ... only take myth seriously ... as devoutly as the puritan as deadly as the determined cavalier ... and you have what I mean by the spirit ... they talk to you if you read if you study ... if you listen ... the spirits of the past if not the future ... caught for a moment in their prisms filled with light and a variety of color or sloshing in filth and leaving a ring of misery ... if you leave your body and go out of your mind ... into myth

cf for example cawardine's Lincoln

Sunday, September 27, 2009


how far can we run with the secular saints ... with a socrates a shakespeare a lincoln ... well we know each is a saint because he fought a good fight ... each one against dishonesty ... each one for the truth ... socrates for the truth that there was a way of thinking opposed to others that we may call philosophy ... shakespeare fought for the right and the right way to tell the truth about the human soul ... and lincoln ... lincoln had one idea ... that the right way to be a soul was to be free ... and each fought a dishonesty in his opponent that had in it the essence of evil ... one by one they laid claim to it to expose it to destroy it ... that truth went out of fashion and into exile like any other temporary thing ... that it was itself the fair object of lust or false pride and in the end the story it told was ordinary dull and defeated ... and that finally there would come a disease of the soul ... that you could take the soul of other men but keep the body complicit to your desire ... till you took your own soul too ... till all the souls were taken and taken away ... till the body alone rose out of the muck and the slime ... the sperm and the egg ... till each was first before the other

Saturday, September 26, 2009


the one the many and the few ... why isn't that the most popular mantra when it's obviously so true ... admittedly there's something chronologically askew when we only go forward and can't take it back ... keep going on finding content only in retrospect even when young ... when you can't stop even when the music has told you plainly this is the place ... not just a door but a door to a city ... not just a city but the city is a port ... what does it matter ... the ship sailed without you all those years ago ... it gave its berths to the young the pure the good centurions history tells us lost to each of our generations ... the song you played over and over again you couldn't quite get ... of course it was beautiful you thought it was sung to you ... the timbre of the voice had an ankle and a knee ... that you could tell ... ah but her voice ... her voice in particular ... the handle that carries the bucket ... the core all of one piece ... the trill of a bugle ... no ... now a trumpet ... she wasn't singing to you ... you see that only now ... it was their anthem and we sang it to them together ... the few that went on board first

Friday, September 25, 2009


if we want more than anything else to talk to god are we not making a fundamental mistake ... I mean beyond the irksomely logical point that we're talking and god is not ... like a therapist in a fifty-minute hour not yet ready to give his opinion perhaps forever ... no I mean this emphasis is on talk ... isn't talk a servant to knowledge ... isn't it to know god that we should want more than anything else ... might it be that we've forgotten this and as a result talk so much we cannot listen ... yes I mean you silent deep thinkers too ... you who talk all the time inside your own skull ... not that talk isn't a fine thing but isn't knowledge better ... what else is all that talk about ... but aren't there some of us ... I think I know I've been there too ... who no longer know what knowledge is or think it's just a circle in a fist ... something you cram into one part of your brain even as it fades in another ... something the culture you live in in its heart it devalues ... yes use it exploit it monopolize it precisely because it's such a temporary being ... for we've forgotten god who makes it hold forever

Thursday, September 24, 2009


for two generations he brought the iron to the forge and some of the time the smith hit it with a thin metal sheet about the size of a flyswatter ... the rest of the time he used it to hit the apprentice ... needless to say the repeated blows had more effect over time on the messenger than on the message he brought each day to the forge ... the administrations of the smith had a positive effect on the iron ... they kept it sharp and free from rust ... their effect on the apprentice was harder to tell though they aged him dramatically in all the time they had to bear ... but he considered that a mere quantitative change ... what he intended and hoped for was a change in quality ... one so powerful it would feel like a change of being ... from pride to ascend to humility ... from luck to grace ... from good fortune to gratitude ... and from the expected perfidy otherwise of the rest of his day he hoped for some carryover in quiet attention if he couldn't manage devotion ... in respect without envy ... in nostalgia for a sense of wonder if he must fail to honor its original

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


it is incredible that you would define necessity by consensus ... no no just its perception just its reception ... the thing itself is what it is ... its instances its instantiations mere implications though they are necessary nonetheless ... anything that touches the one central truth of the one central being ... the only thing necessary ... flows back from it changed absolutely transformed ... such creatures gracefilled and exploding in peaceful glory sometimes are human ... or much less problematically ideas ... their triumph their exaltation is their relation to absolute truth ... what we call necessary implication ... a dependent relation but dependent on absolute simplicity making their own truth in the truth of their propositions ... necessarily true ... always ... eternally ... how the rest of us other people other ideas accept this doesn't change that initial relation between the truth of the idea and the one central truth but can only add or fail to add to its glory ... through a clear apprehension or one grudging or recalcitrant ... joyful or timorous cynical not triumphant

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


how do I know they're connected you can't see any connection ... it's a logical connection you can't see it not directly ... you must look to its results ... well that's all right if you're willing to pay the price of the definition when you say this connection this must between the result and the cause is a matter of custom habit something you've got used to ... well yeah a custom a habit but not mine ... it's as you say something I've got used to ... if it's not your custom your habit whose then ... well it's a bit mine I do add to the pattern ... I call my contribution creativity ... but it's just a trill playing in the wake of a really big ship and if you really want to get going you best get on board ... else you'll spend your life in the backwater maybe treading water just to stay afloat ... spitting out what you're not forced to swallow ... your mouth sputterful ... filled with indignation or despair ... least that's what I read from the writers last century ... more dignity perhaps but angry woebegone and depressing ... you're right there is something of an argument from consensus here ... it says sink or choose to swim

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


we humanity love to tell stories and none more so than to hear them well-told ... especially the stories we tell and hear the telling of in sex ... sometimes stories of frustration and disappointment ... sometimes stories of elation by crescendo ... pathos argument celebration and decline our stories tell them all ... but two things they almost all have in common are the goal and the attainment ... and in this as in the nature of their intensities in the telling of them ... the quest and its conclusion ... they are all our literature in a nutshell and we are all high poets both epic and lyric everyman and everywoman as we tell them ... which is not to say though high as we are we fly the thing well ... this master's piece of a story we're all trying to tell one way or the other just the telling of it comes first ... the technique as we know a poor second ... the greatness is in the story not the lovers telling it ... unless and until they tell it with self-abandon ... describe it sing it a golden bowl between them ... they would fill it with roses had they not first done so with themselves

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


let's begin with a belief ... at least an hypothesis ... we should seek only the best explanation of why we are here and what we are to do ... for instance those alternatives that preserve our identities sanity health and happiness we shall prefer to those which conclude in our death insanity disease or misery ... just as we can determine what has been from what is so we can decide what must be from what we want ... the trick I repeat is to want the best ... pie in the sky wishful thinking you reply ... no no I say just a logical procession in hypothetical mode ... given full reason and experience figure what's best then work backwards to see what gets it ... if you want to work incrementally from better to better-still all the way up to best that's one way to do it as long as you keep a map of the heavenly city in your pocket the roads in and the roads out ... and the landmarks plainly visible ... for the way is long and easily often lost ... perhaps to keep the mind straight and unlikely to detour you should plan what to expect on your arrival and then scrap each plan in favor of the lord's plan whatever that may be