Strange title. I’m not sure it means what I was thinking. However, that is exactly the point was hoping to hit on. Language as an inprecise tool.

I’m taking part in a symposium at MALS that deals mostly with the concept of prison and incarceration within the larger system of democracy. However, that doesn’t matter very much right now. What I’m concerned with is a technical aspect of how this class runs. We have to respond to or create questions involving the weekly readings online. It’s an academic version of this thing with a whole bunch of users actually. Interesting. Anyway, when you’re writing these things, there isn’t a lot of emphasis on writing the way you would for an actual paper (though we all try to write properly). What sometimes (often) happens is that we use the wrong word. All the more so when we’re trying to describe obscure aspects of raw ideas without a lot of concrete references.

It is important to note that when I talk about anything, the words themselves (unfortunately) aren’t my top concern. Any given word I use isn’t chosen out of the technical definition. Rather, I’m passing through the cloud that is the idea of the word and taking with me some aspect of it. Maybe the whole thing, maybe just the feeling the word invokes, maybe some part of it. I don’t mean to be inprecise, but at the same time I’m not going to worry about the meaning of every word so that if you didn’t know English but had a dictionary you could get my exact meaning. I’m much more quantum mechanical than that.

Final words that might help anyone having to deal with me and my ideas. Quantum, rhizome, monad. Sun Tzu’s “Art of War” and interdisciplinary thought. Gadfly.

Global influence | How others see you |

How sad that America has this role. Of course, I don’t know anything about the sample, but Economist has a left slant without being obnoxious. Take it as you will.

beavis on Flickr – Photo Sharing

I’ve seen this before, and it might have had something to do with Danielewski or House of Leaves research… either way, it’s very sobering and amazing. I’ll have to ask my friend Emeric (do you read this thing?) if he can find Beavis. He’d be all about it I bet.

Big Spanish Castle

This is a cool illusion I wasn’t aware of until this morning. Just a color trick with your eyes… the good thing about this link is that it works on Firefox 2. Some of the other sites don’t seem to work. Plus the image is big enough to make it really interesting.

Mr. Bland Goes to Washington – New York Times

I didn’t know anything about this guy until this came up on my RSS feed. Very interesting point.

I recently had a conversation with a friend who claimed to be searching for some sort of answer. Our conversation revolved around where did we come from (because of the up front conclusion that the Bible is bunk) so the answer supposedly being sought was also involving cosmology.

What I encountered was the firm belief that this individual was operating with an open mind, and thought only closed minds accepted what they read or were taught.

I don’t think I argued this properly or clearly enough, but what I was trying to get at with her was that you can’t say you are working with an open mind and then say you won’t accept any systematized truth as being the answer. If you do this you are working with as many artificial rules and boundaries as those who seem to buy into that “false” sense of truth. The way I’m perceiving this situation – if truth presented itself, no matter the form, this open-minded person wouldn’t accept it. The “doubt everything” perspective seems to look like a genuinely inquisitive and searching point of view, but in fact it is as blind as someone following an incorrect teaching.

(messed up graphic but it works for now)

I am not arguing for any particular cosmology at the moment, but I want to argue that when one has an open mind, they cannot rule out anything until they have rigorously determined that falsehood… and even then they have to be open to the fact they might have been wrong in their estimate.

I want to know how to inoculate a mind (my own included) against the arrogant self-interest of thinking that I will know truth when I see it yet not have to analyze a thing. A simple question can be useful to test if one is convinced of their own ideas, which is fine. But if one thinks that those simple twisting questions will determine for themselves the truth, I just don’t see much success for them.

Wired News: The Game of Art

Just read the article and you’ll know why I like it. Well, so long as you know me to some extent.

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