virus: E.F. Schumacher/please hold the raw eggs/Manson

Fri, 08 Jan 1999 23:24:07 -0500

In response to your discussions about consciou... (you know, "the word"):

I wonder what you think about E.F. Schumacher's ideas:

"What enables a man to know anything at all about the world around him?
'Knowing demands the organ fitted to the object,' said Plotinus (d. A.D. 270). Nothing can be known without there being an appropriate 'instrument' in the makeup of the knower. This is the Great Truth of 'adaequatio' (adequateness), which defines knowledge as rei et intellectus-- the understanding of the knower must be adequate to the thing to be known."

"It is not unduly difficult to appreciate the difference between what is
alive and what is lifeless; it is more difficult to distinguish consciousness from life; and to realize, experience, and appreciate the difference between self-awareness and consciousness (that is, between z and y) is hard indeed....While the higher comprises and therefore in a sense understands the lower, no being can understand anything higher than itself. A human being can indeed strain and stretch toward the higher and induce a process of growth through adoration, awe, wonder.....and by attaining a higher level expand its understanding."

Okay, I don't go for the adoration, awe, and wonder either. But I am interested in your thoughts on the rest of it. I mean, within the spiritual stuff and if you don't look at the top of Schumacher's ladder (at God), there are some interesting ideas on the rungs.

Of course, Schumacher (with his levels of being) weaves a sort of necessary faith into things. I know that isn't the topic of choice here. But I'd like to ask then about memes which might be absolutely necessary to survival, at least psychic survival. Which ones are indispensable? Has anyone written about this?

Also, are we just lacking one "instrument" to know our consciousness, and if so will we evolve into being which have this "instrument" which will make us "adequate"? And if we do, will it be via the growth of another piece of brain to add to the "triune brain" (Dr. Paul MacLean)? Interestingly enough, Robert Bly wrote an essay on the triune brain (as inspired by Dr. MacLean), which was much better than his poetry, in my estimation anyway.

Also, I don't think Manson is a genius. I think he has good instincts. And this is another question I have about consciousness... I am not unlike Manson: we are about the same age, from the white trash Midwest, grew up on religion and Captain Crunch, etc... Yet, I don't fit my environment intellectually, spiritually or socially. I find that these
"good instincts" of my own (and this is mere experience talking, not
theory) put me into a sort of match-up game with the rest of the world. When I read something inspiring or enlightening, it is as if it adds language and structure to an idea that existed in me already, only in another, more amorphous and shadowy form... The challenge is to give those ideas form and turn out something (maybe art) that meets an aesthetic standard and a degree of usefulness to other people. I could have tried to become friends with Trent Reznor and become some inudstrial rock star, but I didn't. Because that didn't meet my own criteria; it wasn't art to me. I guess being a music "journalist" (also like Manson), I became jaded about rock 'n' roll. I've interviewed Manson twice, before he became huge and platinum. Okay, nuff said. Comments? Anyone?