Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Not So New

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:48 AM

"I just found me a brand new box of matches …"

— Soundtrack of the  trailer for "Ocean's 8"

" matchwood, immortal diamond …." —

Click the above definitions for further information.

See as well Blue Diamond in this journal.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Unity and Multiplicity (continued*)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:48 AM

Heisenberg on Heraclitus

From Physics and Philosophy , by Werner Heisenberg, 1958, reprinted by Penguin Classics, 2003—

Page 28—

… In the philosophy of Heraclitus of Ephesus the concept of Becoming occupies the foremost
place. He regarded that which moves, the fire, as the basic element. The difficulty, to reconcile
the idea of one fundamental principle with the infinite variety of phenomena, is solved for him by
recognizing that the strife of the opposites is really a kind of harmony. For Heraclitus the world is
at once one and many, it is just 'the opposite tension' of the opposites that constitutes the unity
of the One. He says: 'We must know that war is common to all and strife is justice, and that all
things come into being and pass away through strife.'

Looking back to the development of Greek philosophy up to this point one realizes that it has
been borne from the beginning to this

Page 29—

stage by the tension between the One and the Many. For our senses the world consists of an
infinite variety of things and events, colors and sounds. But in order to understand it we have to
introduce some kind of order, and order means to recognize what is equal, it means some sort
of unity. From this springs the belief that there is one fundamental principle, and at the same
time the difficulty to derive from it the infinite variety of things. That there should be a material
cause for all things was a natural starting point since the world consists of matter. But when one
carried the idea of fundamental unity to the extreme one came to that infinite and eternal
undifferentiated Being which, whether material or not, cannot in itself explain the infinite variety
of things. This leads to the antithesis of Being and Becoming and finally to the solution of
Heraclitus, that the change itself is the fundamental principle; the 'imperishable change, that
renovates the world,' as the poets have called it. But the change in itself is not a material cause
and therefore is represented in the philosophy of Heraclitus by the fire as the basic element,
which is both matter and a moving force.

We may remark at this point that modern physics is in some way extremely near to the
doctrines of Heraclitus. If we replace the word 'fire' by the word 'energy' we can almost repeat
his statements word for word from our modern point of view. Energy is in fact the substance
from which all elementary particles, all atoms and therefore all things are made, and energy is
that which moves. Energy is a substance, since its total amount does not change, and the
elementary particles can actually be made from this substance as is seen in many experiments on
the creation of elementary particles. Energy can be changed into motion, into heat, into light
and into tension. Energy may be called the fundamental cause for all change in the world. But this
comparison of Greek philosophy with the ideas of modern science will be discussed later.

* See earlier uses of the phrase in this journal. Further background— Hopkins and Heraclitus.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Welcome to the Ape Stuff

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

NY Times obituary of Knox Burger,
book editor and agent, who died at 87 on January 4

"As a magazine editor in the 1950s, Knox Burger published Kurt Vonnegut’s first short story….

During Mr. Burger’s tenure at Collier’s, a short story by Vonnegut, whom he had known slightly when both were at Cornell and who was then working in public relations for General Electric, crossed his desk. He asked for changes, which Vonnegut made, and the story, 'Report on the Barnhouse Effect,' appeared in the magazine in February 1950. It was the first published work of fiction for Vonnegut, who recounted the episode decades later….

At least half a dozen authors… honored Mr. Burger by dedicating books to him. Vonnegut, who died in 2007, did, too. His dedication of Welcome to the Monkey House, a 1968 collection of short stories that included 'Report on the Barnhouse Effect,' read:

'To Knox Burger. Ten days older than I am. He has been a very good father to me.'"

A Jesuit at the
Gerard Manley Hopkins Archive

"Bisociation": The Act of Creation

"Koestler’s concept of ‘bisociation’… enters into the very ‘act of creation.’ In every such act, writes Koestler, the creator ‘bisociates,’ that is, combines, two ‘matrices’– two diverse patterns of knowing or perceiving– in a new way. As each matrix carries its own images, concepts, values, and ‘codes,’ the creative person brings together– ‘bisociates’– two diverse matrices not normally connected."

– Joseph J. Feeney, S.J.

Robert Stone in A Flag for Sunrise
(Knopf hardcover, 1981)–

"The eye you see him with is the same eye with which he sees you."

– Father Egan on page 333

Pablo on page 425–

"'…You know, he told me– that old man told me– the eye you look at it with, well, that's the eye it sees you with. That's what he told me.'

Holliwell was moved to recall an experiment he had once read about; he had clipped the report of it for his class. An experimenter endeavoring to observe chimpanzee behavior had fashioned a spy hole in the door of the animals' chamber through which he might watch them unobserved. Putting his eye to it, he had seen nothing more than what he finally identified as the eye of a chimpanzee on the other side of the door. Ape stuff."

More ape stuff from a Jesuit–

"This Jack, joke, poor potsherd, patch, matchwood, immortal diamond,
                Is immortal diamond."

— Gerard Manley Hopkins,
"That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire
and of the comfort of the Resurrection

More ape stuff from myself–


Problem: Perform this transformation
by combining the sorts of permutations allowed
in the diamond puzzle. A solution: click here.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Thursday January 8, 2009

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:07 PM
Report of Arrival

A PBS broadcast of Cyrano de Bergerac was shown yesterday nationally and this evening, a day late, by WNED TV, Buffalo.

From the translation by Anthony Burgess:

Cyrano speaks of falling leaves–

They fall well. With a sort of panache.
They plume down in their last
Loveliness, disguising their fear
Of being dried and pounded to ash
To mix with the common dust.
They go in grace, making their fall appear
Like flying.
ROXANE  You’re melancholy today.
CYRANO  Never. I’m not the melancholy sort.
ROXANE  Very well, then. We’ll let
The leaves of the fall fall while you
Turn the leaves of my gazette.
What’s new at court?
CYRANO … There have been some scandals
To do with witches. A bishop went to heaven,
Or so it’s believed: there’s been as yet no report
Of his arrival….”


CYRANO … See it there, a white plume
Over the battle– A diamond in the ash
Of the ultimate combustion–
My panache.”

Related material:

Today’s previous entry
and the Epiphany
link to the
four-diamond symbol
in Jung’s Aion
with an epigraph by
Gerard Manley Hopkins:

That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire…

Friday, January 13, 2006

Friday January 13, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Beyond the Fire

“Who Needs a White Cube These Days?”
Headline in today’s New York Times

That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire…
— Poem title, Gerard Manley Hopkins

“… Sleep realized
Was the whiteness that is the ultimate intellect,
A diamond jubilance beyond the fire,

That gives its power to the wild-ringed eye.”

— Wallace Stevens,
   “The Owl in the Sarcophagus”
III 13-16,
    from The Auroras of Autumn, 1950

Related material:
The five entries ending on Christmas, 2005.

Thursday, December 8, 2005

Thursday December 8, 2005

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 2:56 PM
Aion Flux

That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire…
— Poem title, Gerard Manley Hopkins  

From Jung’s Map of the Soul, by Murray Stein:

“… Jung thinks of the self as undergoing continual transformation during the course of a lifetime…. At the end of his late work Aion, Jung presents a diagram to illustrate the dynamic movements of the self….”

The image “http://www.log24.com/theory/images/JungDiamonds.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

“The formula presents a symbol of the self, for the self is not just a stable quantity or constant form, but is also a dynamic process.  In the same way, the ancients saw the imago Dei in man not as a mere imprint, as a sort of lifeless, stereotyped impression, but as an active force…. The four transformations represent a process of restoration or rejuvenation taking place, as it were, inside the self….”

“The formula reproduces exactly the essential features of the symbolic process of transformation. It shows the rotation of the mandala, the antithetical play of complementary (or compensatory) processes, then the apocatastasis, i.e., the restoration of an original state of wholeness, which the alchemists expressed through the symbol of the uroboros, and finally the formula repeats the ancient alchemical tetrameria, which is implicit in the fourfold structure of unity. 

What the formula can only hint at, however, is the higher plane that is reached through the process of transformation and integration. The ‘sublimation’ or progress or qualitative change consists in an unfolding of totality into four parts four times, which means nothing less than its becoming conscious. When psychic contents are split up into four aspects, it means that they have been subjected to discrimination by the four orienting functions of consciousness. Only the production of these four aspects makes a total description possible. The process depicted by our formula changes the originally unconscious totality into a conscious one.” 

— Jung, Collected Works, Vol. 9, Part 2, Aion: Researches into the Phenomenology of the Self (1951) 

Related material: 

  The diamond theorem

“Although ‘wholeness’ seems at first sight to be nothing but an abstract idea (like anima and animus), it is nevertheless empirical in so far as it is anticipated by the psyche in the form of  spontaneous or autonomous symbols. These are the quaternity or mandala symbols, which occur not only in the dreams of modern people who have never heard of them, but are widely disseminated in the historical recods of many peoples and many epochs. Their significance as symbols of unity and totality is amply confirmed by history as well as by empirical psychology.  What at first looks like an abstract idea stands in reality for something that exists and can be experienced, that demonstrates its a priori presence spontaneously. Wholeness is thus an objective factor that confronts the subject independently of him… Unity and totality stand at the highest point on the scale of objective values because their symbols can no longer be distinguished from the imago Dei. Hence all statements about the God-image apply also to the empirical symbols of totality.”

— Jung, Aion, as quoted in
Carl Jung and Thomas Merton

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Thursday November 13, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:30 PM

The Tables of Time

Implied by previous two entries:

“This Jack, joke, poor potsherd, patch, matchwood, immortal diamond,

                Is immortal diamond.”

— Gerard Manley Hopkins,

That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire

and of the Comfort of the Resurrection

New York Times, Nov. 13, 2003:

Peace Rune
Hexagram 11,
Jan. 6, 1989

Picnic Symbol 

Picnic site symbol,
British Sea Scouts

See, too, Art Wars and Time Fold.

Monday, January 20, 2003

Monday January 20, 2003

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 5:00 PM

Shine On, Robinson Jeffers

"…be in nothing so moderate as in love of man, 
      a clever servant, insufferable master.
There is the trap that catches noblest spirits,
     that caught — they say — God, when he walked on earth."
Shine, Perishing Republic, by Robinson Jeffers

Robinson Jeffers died at Big Sur, California, on January 20, 1962 — a year to the day after Robert Frost spoke at the Kennedy inauguration.

"The poetry of Robinson Jeffers shines with a diamond's brilliance when he depicts Nature's beauty and magnificence.   His verse also flashes with a diamond's hardness when he portrays human pain and folly."
Gary Suttle  

"Praise Him, He hath conferred aesthetic distance
Upon our appetites, and on the bloody
Mess of our birthright, our unseemly need,
Imposed significant form. Through Him the brutes
Enter the pure Euclidean kingdom of number…."
— Howard Nemerov, 
   Grace To Be Said at the Supermarket 

"Across my foundering deck shone 
A beacon, an eternal beam. | Flesh fade, and mortal trash 
Fáll to the resíduary worm; | world's wildfire, leave but ash: 
In a flash, at a trumpet crash, 
I am all at once what Christ is |, since he was what I am, and 
Thís Jack, jóke, poor pótsherd, | patch, matchwood,
    immortal diamond, 
Is immortal diamond."
— Gerard Manley Hopkins,
    That Nature is a Heraclitean Fire and of the Comfort of the Resurrection

"In the last two weeks, I've been returning to Hopkins.  Even in the 'world's wildfire,' he asserts that 'this Jack, joke, poor potsherd, patch, matchwood, immortal diamond,/Is immortal diamond.' A comfort."
— Michael Gerson, head White House speechwriter,
    in Vanity Fair, May 2002, page 162

"There's none but truth can stead you.  Christ is truth."
— Gerard Manley Hopkins

"The rock cannot be broken.  It is the truth."
— Wallace Stevens 

"My ghost you needn't look for; it is probably
Here, but a dark one, deep in the granite…."
— Robinson Jeffers, Tor House

On this date in 1993, the inauguration day of William Jefferson Clinton, Audrey Hepburn died.

"…today, the Rock cries out to us, clearly, forcefully…."
Maya Angelou, January 20, 1993

"So, purposing each moment to retire,
She linger'd still. Meantime, across the moors,
Had come young Porphyro, with heart on fire"
— John Keats, The Eve of St. Agnes (January 20), IX

Top view of

Top view of
Hearts On Fire

Advertising Copy:

What you see with a Hearts On Fire diamond is an unequalled marriage of math and physics, resulting in the world's most perfectly cut diamond.


"Eightpointed symmetrical signs are ancient symbols for the Venus goddess or the planet Venus as either the Morning star or the Evening star."

"Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is strong as death, passion fierce as the grave.  Its flashes are flashes of fire, a raging flame."
Song of Solomon

"The last words from the people in the towers and on the planes, over and over again, were 'I love you.'  Over and over again, the message was the same, 'I love you.' …. Perhaps this is the loudest chorus from The Rock:  we are learning just how powerful love really is, even in the face of death."
The Rev. Kenneth E. Kovacs

"Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again."
The Who 

See also my note, "Bright Star," of October 23, 2002.


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