the body sources a mind that defines the body


‘Nutshell’ Introduction to ‘What is going wrong with [Western] society’?

Nutshell: – Psychologists [the discipline] don’t understand physics to the point of being able to challenge it and physicists [the discipline] don’t understand psychology to the point of being able to challenge it, so each domain settles for treating the other domain as a ‘separate’ domain.  But the point of departure for physicists is ‘psychology’ (sensation) and the point of departure for psychologists is ‘physics’ (physiology).  Mach argues for the psychophysical (one domain).  If Mach is right, and I have at least 20 years of investigative work that, for me, point to him being right, then space is ‘relational’ and there are no ‘things-in-themselves’ [they are relational sensa], so the ‘mind’ and ‘body’ do not split into two.  But because we treat them as if they were split and we treat things as ‘things-in-themselves’ rather than relational nexa or ‘sensa’ [centres of perception/experience], our modern western society mistakenly [mis]takes for ‘reality’, an intellectual scientific concept based [linguistic idealization based] world of ‘things-in-themselves’ and ‘what things do’.  What remains hidden beneath it is the world of sensation, the basic world of sensory experience, which we have ‘paved over’ with purified scientific concepts.  Society’s ‘disconnect’ is that we are using our intellect to engage with this non-real world of purified scientific concepts, which is not the world of our sensory experience.  This is a major source of ‘incoherence’ in our societal dynamic. Currently, we are ‘stuck’ and prevented from communally discovering [acknowledging] ‘our disconnect’ because of our continuing treatment of the realm of the psychological and the realm of the physical as two different realms, rather than as one psychophysical phenomenal realm.

‘What is going wrong with [Western] society’?

An insight-giving document I have added to my references on this topic is an article that Mach wrote at the behest of Alfred Binet, entitled ‘Sur le rapport de la physique avec la psychologie’, L’Année Psychologique, vol. 12.  [see URL below].  This article (discussed below) adds clarification to where Mach is coming from, and how his view differs from where modern psychology and modern physics have gone.  Continuing discoveries in biology, such as ‘epigenetics’ [which recasts the cell from a thing-in-itself to a center-of-perception/experience] add credence to Mach’s views, but the problem is that the implications are so big, that few people other than those whose opinions ‘don’t matter’ will have the ‘impertinence’ to proffer and stand up for these contra-to-cultural-grain views.  As Nietzsche, who is in ‘the same camp as Mach’ says;

“I am only too well aware of the conditions under which a man understands me, and then necessarily understands. He must be intellectually upright to the point of hardness, in order even to endure my seriousness and my passion. He must be used to living on mountain-tops, – and to feeling the wretched gabble of politics and national egotism beneath him. He must have become indifferent; he must never inquire whether truth is profitable or whether it may prove fatal… Possessing from strength a predilection for question for which no one has enough courage nowadays; the courage for the forbidden; his predestination must be the labyrinth. The experience of seven solitudes. New ears for new music. New eyes for the most remote things. A new conscience for truths which hitherto have remained dumb. And the will to economy on a large scale: to husband his strength and his enthusiasm… He must honour himself, he must love himself; he must be absolutely free with regard to himself. … Very well then! Such men alone are my readers, my proper readers, my pre-ordained readers. …”  —Friedrich Nietzsche from “The Antichrist”

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The following is, in my view, a viable understanding of ‘what troubles us’ about modern society; i.e. the feeling that ‘we are the bus that we are passengers on’ and we don’t understand what is animating its unfolding travelogue.  We have the sense that the lack of response from our attempts to control the unfolding of our social dynamic with determined, powerful and purposeful wrenchings on the steering wheel, is telling us that the linkage between the steering and the wheels has been severed [or never connected].  In other words, we have the sense that there is a ‘disconnect’ of some sort between the world as we are seeing and engaging with it, and the world as it ‘really’ [i.e. ‘physically’] is.

My view is that Mach and Nietzsche [and again, Poincaré, Bohm, Peat, Schrödinger, Rovelli and others] have given us the answer to this, and that both ‘psychology’ [the discipline] and ‘physics’ [the discipline], are obscuring this answer, by promoting the concept of the human organism as a locally existing ‘thing’, a physiological system ‘with a psyche’ as a separate system.

In the Machean view, there are no such things as ‘things-in-themselves’.  Mach’s ideas are being born out in biological cell research, where the ‘cell’ which was seen as a ‘thing’ with a ‘mind of its own’ [our models implied that ‘it knew how to reproduce itself’, the cell centre or nucleus being the director of such things, … without dependency on outside direction.].  The ‘new science of epigenesis’ models the ‘cell’ as a ‘unit of perception’, wherein the reproduction of the cell is informed by ‘signals from the environment’ giving us a concept of the ‘cell’ that corresponds to the ‘storm-cell’ in the atmosphere, suggesting that such things as we thought were ‘things-in-themselves’ are instead, in the case of cells, are purely relational ‘sensa’ or ‘nexa’ within the ‘flow’ [within the continually transforming relational spatial plenum] consistent with modern physics.

The ‘relational space’ view of Mach, Nietzsche, Poincaré, Bohm, Peat, Schrödinger, Rovelli, in which there are no ‘things’; i.e. in which ‘things’, including the ‘thing-with-a-psyche’ view of psychology and physics, are intellectual constructs that have no basis in physical phenomena.

The ‘Double Error’

Both Nietzsche and Poincaré have discussed the ‘double error’ [petitio principii] which splits apart a nexal centre of perception into a subject ‘perceiver/experient’ [doer] and a ‘perception/experience’ [deed].


Our judgement has us conclude that every change must have an author”;–but this conclusion is already mythology: it separates that which effects from the effecting. If I say “lightning flashes,” I have posited the flash once as an activity and a second time as a subject, and thus added to the event a being that is not one with the event but is rather fixed, “is” and does not “become.”–To regard an event as an “effecting,” and this as being, that is the double error, or interpretation, of which we are guilty.” – Nietzsche, ‘Will to Power’, 531

Experiencing/perceiving is a case in point.   We are aware of our continual perceiving/experiencing, but where is the physical-phenomenal justification for intellectually breaking this experiencing into two components, the ‘experient/perceiver’ as doer of the deed, and ‘experience/perception’ as the deed?

“[Descartes’ ‘I think therefore I am’ reflects] … our grammatical custom that adds a doer to every deed. In short, this is not merely the substantiation of a fact but a logical-metaphysical postulate” … “That which gives the extraordinary firmness to our belief in causality is not the great habit of seeing one occurrence following another but our inability to interpret events otherwise than as events caused by intentions. It is belief in the living and thinking as the only effective force–in will, in intention–it is belief that every event is a deed, that every deed presupposes a doer, it is belief in the “subject.” Is this belief in the concept of subject and attribute not a great stupidity?” – Nietzsche, ‘Will to Power’ 484

This same philosophical problem crops up in mathematics in the guise of ‘Cantorism’, which Poincaré describes as a ‘disease that mathematics will have to recover from’.  It is the same problem in that it involves an unjustified splitting apart of the definer and the thing defined.  The set of whole numbers is defined by a process which reeks of ‘petitio principii’ [Poincaré] and we come away a category, integers, that we can indefinitely ‘make more of’ by recursive incrementing; i.e. N(n+1) = N(n) + 1.  For some mathematicians, ‘infinity’ is already established by this relation [Poincaré refers to these mathematicians as ‘Cantorian realists’] while for other’s, this incrementing process cannot be bypassed, and since it would take an infinite time to increment to infinity, the existence of infinity is not proved by ‘induction’.

Here one can imagine counting storm cells that emerge in the atmosphere.  Since the storm cell is a visual pattern recognized by an observer, we need the observer or observers to count the storm-cells and thus we can’t have more storm-cells than observings; i.e. we can’t jump to the conclusion that the number ranges to infinity.  As Poincaré says in ‘Dernières Pensées’, Ch. V., Les Mathematiques et la Logique;

Let us attempt therefore to study the psychology of the two opposing schools  [‘Cantorian realists’, ‘pragmatist-idealists’] from a purely objective point of view just as if we ourselves were not a member of these schools, as if we were describing a war between two ants’ nests. We shall first of all observe that there are two opposite tendencies among mathematicians in their manner of considering infinity. For some, infinity is derived from the finite; infinity exists because there is an infinity of possible finite things. For others, infinity exists before the finite; the finite is obtained by cutting out a small piece from infinity.

What Poincaré is saying here is that in mathematics, the only meaning we can take away is the meaning that comes from mathematical proofs; at least this is the view of the pragmatist idealist, such as Poincaré.  In this case, there must be a mathematician present to witness the proof.  If one says that if the sequence N(n+1) = N(n) + 1 is true for n = 0, 1, 2, 3, … it is true for all n, … this ‘proof by induction’ is a conclusion that we might usefully use, but it is not a ‘verifiable conclusion’ since the verification is ‘postponed’ and the mathematician verifying it would have to wait around well beyond his lifetime in order to verify it.  Here we see again this question of whether the observer can be split apart from the observed, the prover from the proved; i.e. whether the subject can be split apart from the object, so as to suppose the existence of an objective world independent of the observer.  Or, on the other hand, as Mach would claim, ‘observING’, in general, is a psycho-physical unitary that cannot be split apart, as far as physical phenomena are concerned, into ‘doer-and-deed’, ‘observer-and-observed’, definer-and-defined, … the physical phenomenon being ‘observING’ and the split into ‘observer-observed’ being an intellectual idealization.

“Does a theorem which does not result in any verifiable conclusion have a meaning? Or, more generally, does any theorem whatever have a meaning apart from the proofs which it involves? This is where the mathematicians differ. Those of the first school, whom I shall call pragmatists (since it is necessary to assign them a name) say no; and when a theorem is brought to their attention without giving them a means of verifying it, they see in it only unintelligible verbiage. They wish to consider only objects which can be defined in a finite number of words. When in an argument an object A is mentioned as satisfying certain conditions, they understand an object which satisfies these conditions, whatever may be the words used to complete its definition, provided these words are finite in number.  Those of the other school, whom I shall call for short Cantorians, do not wish to allow this. A man, however talkative he may be, will never in his lifetime utter more than a billion words. Consequently, shall we exclude from science the objects whose definition contains one billion and one words ? And if we do not exclude them, why should we exclude those which can be defined only by an infinite number of words, since the formulation of the first type of definitions is, like that of the second, beyond the scope of mankind ?

Now, Poincaré is discussing here; “the psychology of the two opposing schools  [‘Cantorian realists’, ‘pragmatist-idealists’]”.  This is central to our quest to understanding what is going on in our society since we [globally dominant Western society] has ‘institutionalized’ one of these two ‘psychologies’; i.e. Cantorian realism.  This is Nietzsche’s ‘complaint’, as well, where he effectively chides Descartes for his ‘I think, therefore I am’, saying Is this belief in the concept of subject and attribute not a great stupidity?”

In a relational space, as implied by the physical-phenomena of our sensory experience, space itself is the engenderer of observer and observed; i.e. ‘consciousness’ is a property of the relational space in this Machean/Schrödingerian view, and individual perspective arises from the unique, relational situation of ourselves as ‘nexa’ or ‘sensa’ within the continually transforming relational spatial-plenum.

The ‘disconnect’ that arises from splitting apart the unitary of ‘observING’ into observer and observed ‘thing’ introduces mucho confusion into our social dynamics.  Starting from ‘observING’[‘perceivING’, ‘experiencING’] and breaking this psycho-physical unitary into ‘observer’ and observed thing forces us to RE-render dynamics in terms of ‘what things do’, yielding a notional world dynamic in which ‘observING’ is no longer part of the dynamic.  There are things that move and other things, called observers, that capture in intellectual conceptual terms [e.g. linguistic idealizations], the story of motion in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves are doing’.  ObservING is no longer the primary physical phenomenon; it has been reduced to an internal process animated behaviour on the part of a local, independently-existing thing-in-itself, ‘the observer’.  Thus do we have the internal psychological realm of this process of observing, and also the external physical realm of ‘what physical things-in-themselves are doing’.  In other words, we have intellectually split apart the psychophysical unitary of ‘observING’ [‘experiencING’, ‘perceivING’] into the doer-deed duality of ‘observer-observed’ [‘experient-experience’, ‘perceiver-perceived’].

That is, confusing the intellectual concept of a ‘thing’ and the associated view of ‘dynamics’ as ‘what things do’, for physical phenomena, gives rise to our modern, globally dominant  quote-unquote ‘reality’ that we model in terms of ‘sovereign states’ and their institutions of government, corporations and justice [morality applied to ‘thing’-behaviour].  This ‘thing-based’ reality is ‘linguistic idealization’; i.e. it is based on the logical constructions of thought and language that employ ‘purified scientific concepts’ and which is otherwise known as ‘rationality’.

The ‘bottom line’ is that the physical phenomenal ‘reality’ of our psycho-physical experience is being over-ridden by ‘linguistic idealization’.  That is, the dominant organizing of the globally dominant Western-culture [SAE language idealized] social dynamic that supports war and peace, commerce and justice, as managed by our institutions of government and justice is ‘DISCONNECTED’ from the ‘physical-phenomenal reality’ of our psycho-physical experience.


Our psycho-physical experience is our only primary source of understanding the world dynamic that we are included in, and it not only informs us of a relational world dynamic, it is itself a relational sensing.  In psychology, one first assumes the existence of the ‘thing-in-itself’ inhabited by the psyche, and understands the behaviour of the thing as ‘its behaviour’ though directed by a complex psyche [Jung] where the individual is informed by his consciousness and at the same time by a ‘personal unconscious’ and a ‘collective unconscious’.  The problem here is with the notion of ‘individual thing-in-itself behaviour’.    In the Machean view, the notion of ‘the behaviour of an individual’ is an ‘intellectual concept’ born of convenience or ‘the economy of thought’ as in the case of the behaviour of an ‘individual storm-cell’ [‘Katrina is growing, strengthening, moving north, ravaging New Orleans, dissipating’, … is linguistic idealization rather than physical phenomenon].


In a paper by Hayo Siemsen, ‘Alfred Binet – Ernst Mach: Similarities, Differences and Influences’, … under the section heading ‘Psychophysics’, Siemsen describes the dialogue between Binet, coming from psychology and reaching out tie into physics, and Mach, who started out in physics which led him into psychology and the attempt to understand the connection between the two.   The following excerpts describe how, Mach, unlike Binet, refused to allow any dependence in his psychophysical Erkenntnistheorie, on the intellectual notion of a ‘thing-in-itself’ while Binet did;


“Contrary to psychologists, such as Binet or James, Mach instead distinguishes clearly between the intellectual concept of an “object” and the phenomenal concepts of bodies, colours, etc. “The thing is therefore an intellectual entity (a complex of views or a scientific concept) ; the phenomenon on the contrary is a sensual entity, which can concur with the intellectual entity and can achieve the expectations, which it induced, but which it can also completely disappoint.“ (Mach, ‘Sur le rapport de la physique avec la psychologie’, L’Année Psychologique, vol. 12 ). What Mach does in this case is to use Binet’s critique of the abstraction from the physiological in the concept of perception also on the physical part of perception. The world as we can know it consists only of the relations between objects or things, not of the objects themselves.”


Mach’s critique of the Kantian thing-in-itself goes beyond physics into philosophy. The thing-in-itself is not a physical, but an intellectual (i.e. philosophical) postulate. “When we analyze our thoughts, even the most abstract, we have to notice that they directly or indirectly contain the elements of our sensual perceptions in an undefined form and newly interconnected.” (Mach, ibid.).  These sensual roots should not be abstracted from in order to keep them hidden in intuition. “[…] it is not enough to replace the instinctively acquired opinions of everyday life, which have crept into philosophy under different guises, by a purified scientific perspective. One has to lay bare their psychological roots ; otherwise they will continue to tiller.” (Mach, ibid)

[‘tiller’ (verb): -A shoot of a plant which springs from the root or bottom of the original stalk; a sapling; a sucker.]


The bottom line here is that ‘the disconnect’ is to confuse the ‘purified scientific view’ in terms of ‘things-in-themselves’ and ‘what they do’ for ‘physical phenomena’.  They are not physical phenomena because there are no ‘things-in-themselves’.  ‘Things’ are purely relational and from our sensings of visible form and tactility, and with the ontologizing support of language, we intellectually idealize the relational form as a ‘thing-in-itself’.


Currently, we are ‘stuck’ and prevented from discovery of ‘our disconnect’ because of our continuing treatment of the realm of the psychological and the realm of the physical as two separate realms.  The lock is further ‘cemented’ by the massive Western social investment in (institutionalizing of) linguistically idealized pseudo-reality, which has been paving over the ground-level psychophysical phenomena of our experience.




* * *


from final paragraph in; Mach, ‘Sur le rapport de la physique avec la psychologie’, which can be found in .pdf form at  (it is the last article of the first part of that issue, pages 303-318)


Mach is saying that, for the physicist, the world of psychology is inaccessible to him, but nevertheless, it is his point of departure.  On the other hand, the psychologist’s point of departure is the physical world; i.e. he has to trust the physicist’s views in regard to the physical aspects of man and the world.


N.B.  Here, in this crosswise mutual dependency where the definitions of psychology depend on the definitions of physics and the definitions of physics depend on the definitions of psychology, we have a ‘re-enactment’ of the ‘double error’ of Nietzsche and the ‘petitio principii’ of Poincaré; i.e. physics and psychology become mutually defining whereas the physical phenomena is a unitary psycho-physical phenomena.


The philosopher of physics, meanwhile, understands that the real physical world is inaccessible to him and that while he commences with psychological intuitions/sensations, he ‘refines them’ into intellectual concepts that appear certain, but which are built upon these uncertain ‘sensations’ that now hide beneath them.  Both the physicist and the psychologist, therefore, have to work with ‘two worlds’ that are ‘heterogeneous’, the physical and the psychological because of this ‘mutual dependence’ of each one on the other, … but this situation is not inevitable, it is an artefact of the splitting of inquiry into these two realms.


* * *



Extract from , ‘Sur le rapport de la physique avec la psychologie’, by Ernst Mach

Le physiologiste étudie l’organisme de l’homme ou de l’animal en pur physicien et en pur chimiste. Mais, aussitôt qu’une induction analogique le conduit à attribuer des sensations à l’objet de ses recherches, il se figure qu’il abandonne le palpable, l’objectif, et qu’il s’engage dans le domaine de l’incertain et de l’insaisissable. Il ne songe pas que le physicien use perpétuellement aussi d’inductions analogiques de cette espèce, qu’il considère comme une masse palpable la lune accessible seulement à la vue ou qu’il attribue à un conducteur traversé par un courant toutes les propriétés d’un tel conducteur, bien qu’il ne puisse les vérifier à nouveau dans chaque cas, et que parfois il ne soit point du tout en mesure de le faire. Quoiqu’il en soit, le naturaliste considère le domaine physique qui lui est familier comme le monde véritable, la sensation, au contraire, et, en général, le domaine psychique, comme un monde entièrement étranger et inaccessible. Le psychologue, docile au préjugé de la physique, — tant aussi les nécessités biologiques poussent tout homme à se comporter en physicien, — le psychologue accepte à son tour l’opposition de deux mondes hétérogènes; mais, tandis que pour le physicien le monde psychique semble insaisissable, c’est dans ce dernier qu’il voit justement la donnée immédiate et le point de départ nécessaire; en revanche, du point de vue philosophique où il s’est placé, le monde physique recule pour lui à une distance inaccessible. Ce résultat paradoxal est-il inévitable? Je ne le crois pas. Aussi bien, dans les deux domaines, la fin de toute recherche est identique : établir des équations de la forme F (A, B, C,…)= 0.

Ernst Mach



This part II of ‘What is going wrong with [Western] society copies a forum discussion that starts with an interview of an aboriginal who is commenting on a protest movement, ‘Idle No More’.  This discussion brings out how the philosophical dualism of splitting apart the ‘physical’ and the ‘psychological’ come into play in societal dynamics.   In particular, it brings out why ‘non-dualism’ [‘reality’ in terms of relational space and the psycho-physical as phenomenal unitary] should prevail over ‘non-dualism’ [‘reality’ in terms of absolute space, absolute time and ‘what things-in-themselves are doing’].  It also gives insight into why ‘non-dualism’ is NOT rising into its natural primacy over dualism.

Zig Zag on Idle No More: “In any liberation movement there are internal and external struggles”

Tue, 01/22/2013 – 13:35 |  Anonymous

From Sketchy Thoughts

We are living in exciting times, with large numbers of people clearly fed up and taking action, no longer content to wait for the right moment or the right ideas or the right leadership to tell them what to do. Whether we think of Occupy, the Arab Spring, or the current Idle No More upsurge, spontaneity and taking a stand seem to be the order of the day. For those of us have lived through less exuberant times, it is a welcome change. That said, this new environment that clearly comes with its own potential pitfalls and weaknesses.

In order to try and understand this better, i asked some questions of Zig Zag, also known as Gord Hill, who is of the Kwakwaka’wakw nation and a long-time participant in anti-colonial and anti-capitalist resistance movements in Canada.  Gord is the author and artist of The 500 Years of Indigenous Resistance Comic Book and The Anti-Capitalist Resistance Comic Book (published by Arsenal Pulp Press) and 500 Years of Indigenous Resistance (published by PM Press); he also maintains the website

Here is what he had to say…

K: What are the living conditions of Indigenous people today within the borders of what is called “canada”?

ZZ: Indigenous people in Canada experience the highest levels of poverty, violent death, disease, imprisonment, and suicide.  Many live in substandard housing and do not have clean drinking water, while many territories are so contaminated that they can no longer access traditional means of sustenance.  In the area around the Tar Sands in northern Alberta, for example, not only are fish and animals being found with deformities but the people themselves are experiencing high rates of cancer.  This is genocide.

K: Dispossession has been a central feature of colonialism and genocide within canada. Can you give some examples of how people have resisted dispossession in the past?

ZZ: Well in the past Native peoples had some level of military capability to resist dispossession, which ended around 1890.  More recently there have been many examples including Oka 1990, Ipperwash 1995, Sutikalh 2000, Six Nations 2006, etc.  At Oka it was armed resistance that stopped the proposed expansion of a golf course and condo project.  At Ipperwash people re-occupied their reserve land that had been expropriated during WW2, and they still remain there to this day.  At Sutikalh, St’at’imc people built a re-occupation camp to stop a $530 million ski resort. They were successful and the camp remains to this day.  At Six Nations they re-occupied land and prevented the construction of a condo project.

K: The canadian state has an army, prisons, police forces, and the backing of millions of people – not to mention the fact that it is completely integrated into world capitalism, both as a major source of natural resources and as an imperialist junior partner, messing up peoples around the world. What kind of possibilities are there for Indigenous people to successfully break out of this system, and resist canadian colonialism? What is the strategic significance of Indigenous resistance?

ZZ: Indigenous peoples must make alliances with other social sectors that also organize against the system.  The strategic significance of Indigenous peoples is their greater potential fighting spirit, stronger community basis of organizing, their ability to significantly impact infrastructure (such as railways, highways, etc, that pass through or near reserve communities) and their examples of resistance that can inspire other social movements.

K: What are bills C-38 and C-45, and how do they fit into the current global economic and political context?

ZZ: Bills C-38 and C-45 are omnibus budget bills the government has passed in order to implement its budget.  They include significant revisions of various federal acts, including the Navigable Waters Protection Act, environmental assessments, and the Indian Act. These are generally seen as facilitating greater corporate access to resources, such as mining and oil and gas.  The amendments to the Indian Act affect the ability of band councils to lease reserve land.  The move to open up resources, by removing protection from many rivers and lakes and “streamlining” environmental assessments is clearly meant to bolster Canada as a source of natural resources and to overcome public opposition to major projects such as the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline and others.

K: Is this something new, or more of the same old same old from the canadian state?

ZZ: These bills are new in that they’re designed, in part, to facilitate greater corporate access to resources, primarily in the changes to the environmental assessment and Navigable Waters Protection Act.  These are measures designed to re-position Canada as a major source of oil and gas for the global market, and particularly Asian markets, while diversifying Canadian exports of such resources away from a US focused one, as the US economy continues to decline.  At the same time they are indeed a continuation of policies adapted by the federal government for many years now, which include major projects such as the Alberta Tar Sands and proposed pipeline projects.  These policies are the result of the neo-liberal ideology that states have been following for the past few decades.

K: What is one to make of this Idle No More movement that has sprung up over the past six weeks?

ZZ: It’s similar to Occupy in that it reveals a yearning for social change among grassroots Native peoples, but it is also reformist and lacks any anti-colonial or anti-capitalist perspective.  It is fixated primarily on legal-political reforms, specifically repealing Bill C-45 (which passed in mid-December).  Although it has mobilized thousands of Natives, this is only to create political pressure on the government.  The four women from Saskatchewan who founded the movement are lawyers, academics, and business managers, so it is no surprise that the entire trajectory of the movement has been focused on legal-political reforms.  Another prominent speaker on behalf of INM has been Pam Palmater, a lawyer and Chair in Indigenous Governance at Ryerson University.  Last summer, she campaigned against Shawn Atleo for the position of “grand chief” of the Assembly of First Nations (AFN).

As it isn’t anti-colonial or anti-capitalist, it has been a safe platform for many Indian Act chiefs and members of the Aboriginal business elite to participate, and many have in fact helped orchestrate the national protests and blockades that have occurred.  In fact, INM allied itself early on with chiefs from Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario.  It was chiefs from these provinces that made the symbolic attempt to enter the House of Commons on Dec. 4, an event that in many ways really launched INM and built the December 10 day of action.

These chiefs oppose Atleo, support Palmater, and have been the driving force behind most of the major rallies and blockades that have occurred in their respective provinces (with notable exceptions, such as the Tyendinaga train blockades).  

The involvement of the band councils has helped stifle any real self-organization of grassroots people.  The reformist methods promoted by the original founders has included the imposing of pacifist methods and so has dampened the warrior spirit of the people overall. Another factor in the INM mobilizing has been the fast carried out by the Indian Act chief Theresa Spence in Ottawa.  This has motivated many Natives to participate in INM due to the emotional and pseudo-spiritual aspects of the fast (a “hunger strike” to the death).  Despite the praise given to Spence, she revealed her intentions in late December when she made a public call for the chiefs to “take control” of the grassroots.

K: What you are outlining seems to be a class analysis of the INM movement. Some people have suggested that class analysis is incompatible with anticolonial analysis, that it is divisive, or amounts to applying a european framework that is not relevant to Indigenous people. What do you make of this?

ZZ: Under colonization the capitalist division of classes is imposed on Indigenous peoples.  The band councils and Aboriginal business elite are proof of this.  Under capitalist class divisions, there are new political and economic elites that are established and who have more to gain from assimilation and collaboration, despite any movements for reform they may be involved in.  As separate political and economic elites, they have their own interests which are not the same as the most impoverished and oppressed, which comprises the bulk of Indigenous grassroots people.  Middle class elites are able to impose their own beliefs and methods on grassroots movements through their greater access to, and control of, resources (including money, communications, transport, etc.).

For a genuinely autonomous, decentralized and self-organized Indigenous grassroots movement to emerge, the question of middle-class elites, including the band councils, must be resolved.  I would also say that in any liberation movement there are internal and external struggles.  The internal one determines the overall methods and objectives of the movement, and therefore cannot be silenced or marginalized under the pretext of preserving some non-existent “unity.”  In fact, only when internal struggles are clarified can there be any significant gains made in the external one, against the primary enemy (state and capital).

K: January 11 was the day that Harper was initially supposed to meet with Spence and other chiefs from across canada. But on the day of the meeting, due to Harper’s shenanigans, Spence and most other chiefs opted to boycott it, and Spence declared she would be continuing her hunger strike. How deep is this split, and does it signify that some chiefs are breaking with the neocolonial setup and developing a radical potential?

ZZ: There have always been divisions within the AFN and between regions.  As I mentioned, some Indian Act chiefs, especially in Saskatchewan, Ontario and Manitoba, have been spearheading many of the Idle No More rallies and breaking from the AFN’s agenda.  This shouldn’t be interpreted as proof that they are more radical, but rather that they have their own agenda.  “Grand chief” Nepinak of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, the AFN’s provincial wing, has been very active in promoting INM rallies and blockades, etc.  But Nepinak’s AMC also suffered massive funding cuts announced in early September.  His organization will see their annual funding cut from $2.6 million down to $500,000.  He is fighting for his political and economic career and has little to lose by agitating for more grassroots actions, but that doesn’t mean he’s now a “radical.”  Rather, the band councils and chiefs must be understood as having their own agenda in regards to their power struggle with the state.  Many are easily fooled by militant rhetoric and symbolic blockades, but these are old tactics for the Indian Act chiefs.

Along with chiefs fighting for the maintenance of their provincial or regional organizations (such as the AMC or tribal councils), which is contributing to band council participation across the country in INM mobilizing, the chiefs in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario have a political struggle with Atleo and have their own vision for greater economic development.  It was the chiefs from these provinces that boycotted the meeting between the PM and Atleo, and who called for the January 16 national day of action.

Delegations of these chiefs have travelled to Asia, Venezuela, and Iran seeking corporate investors, especially in the oil and gas industry.  Chief Wallace Fox of the Onion Lake Cree Nation, one of those at the forefront of recent events and an outspoken opponent of Atleo, is the chief of the top oil producing Native band in the country (located in Alberta and Saskatchewan).  Fox and other chiefs have also attempted to gain access to OPEC, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, for partnerships with corporations.  Nepinak and other chiefs also met with Chinese officials in December, also looking for potential partnerships.

The rationale of these chiefs, Palmater and their allies in INM (the four “official founders”) is that Atleo is collaborating with the assimilation strategy of the Harper regime.  Meanwhile, it is they who seek to take control of the AFN and impose their own version of Native capitalism, based in part on foreign investment in resource industries.  Ironically of course, many INM participants are rallying to defend Mother Earth, in many ways being used as pawns in a power struggle between factions of the Aboriginal business elite.  Many INM participants, I would say, are unaware of these internal dynamics.  Their mobilization under the slogans of “stop bill c-45,” “defend land and water,” etc., are positive aspects of INM, and show the great potential for grassroots movements.  But this is something that is in the early stages, and the movement will have to overcome the parasitical participation and control of the Indian Act chiefs as well as middle-class elites for it to advance.

K: There were hundreds of Idle No More actions on January 11. Here in Montreal, roughly three thousand people demonstrated, by far the largest protest related to Indigenous issues i have ever seen in this city. At the same time, the demonstration was overwhelmingly made up of non-Indigenous people, ranging from radical anticapitalists to members of Quebec nationalist and social democratic groups. This seems in line with the INM strategy of framing the movement as representing all canadians. How compatible is this with an anticolonial perspective, and what are the strengths and weaknesses of such diverse support?

ZZ: The first priority and main focus for an anti-colonial liberation movement must be its own people.  This is how it develops its own autonomous methods and practise, free from outside interference.  This helps to unify the movement and establish it as an independent social force.  Alliances are clearly necessary, and while the ultimate goal might be a multi-national resistance movement, colonialism and the unique history as well as socio-economic conditions of Native peoples means they must be able to organize autonomously from other social sectors.

I think in principle to frame Idle No More as one representing all Canadians is correct, but the way in which they are doing this waters down and minimizes the anti-colonial analysis that is necessary for radical social change.  By trying to appeal to the “Canadian citizen” it may broaden its appeal but to what end?  In the process it will have weakened the anti-colonial resistance.  Even now you can see the renewed calls for “peaceful” protests from INM’ers, as well as statements from the “official founders” that they don’t support “illegal” actions such as blockades.  They’re very sensitive to any loss of public support, claiming it is now an “educational” movement and that they don’t want to inconvenience citizens.  The reformists might claim that in this manner we can build a bigger movement to defeat Bill C-45, but clearly such bills are just part of a much larger systemic problem we can identify as colonialism and capitalism.  Without addressing the root causes we’ll just be doing the same thing next year against another set of bills. And of course, basing one’s anti-colonial resistance on the opinion of the settler population will never lead to liberation.

K: We seem to have entered a period of spontaneous upsurges like INM internationally, be it the Arab Spring or Occupy or the recent anti-rape protests in India; in each of these cases masses of people are clearly fed up and willing to throw themselves into action, but for better or for worse they often bypass any of the organized anti-imperialist or anti-capitalist groups or traditions. Is this a sign of a failure on our part, that when circumstances finally give way to revolt we are not connected to those doing the revolting? Or is there something else going on?

ZZ: I would say a part of these mobilizations is the use of social media in spreading information and coordinating actions. Certainly in the Arab Spring, Occupy and now Idle No More, this has been a significant component of the mobilizing that has occurred.  It seems that there are more people who have been influenced by these ongoing social revolts and mobilizations, that then decide to take action of some kind, and the internet empowers them to organize rallies, etc.  They don’t need the already existing radical groups to do this, and may not even know of their existence.

This leads to the situation where mobilizations are called, gain traction and then expand — but they have a very shallow analysis of the system and lack experience in real resistance.  In both Occupy and INM we see inexperienced organizers who believe they have re-invented the wheel, who feel they know best how social movements should conduct themselves, etc.  At best, these mobilizations show that there is a yearning for social change among a growing number of people, but social media enables them to bypass more experienced and radical groups, and their naivete leads them to think that these groups fail because they’re too radical. Therefore they appeal to the most basic and populist slogans, the least threatening forms of action, etc.

I don’t know if I would characterize it as a failure on the part of radical groups that they are somewhat disconnected from these types of mobilizations.  They’re not revolts, they’re largely reformist rallies without a radical analysis dominated by liberals and pacifists, middle-class organizers, etc.  Until these movements are radicalized there is little possibility for radicals to be fully involved.  Another aspect of these types of mobilizations is their relatively short duration.  Occupy was largely over three or four months after it began, with some exceptions (such as Oakland).  How long will INM endure?

K: Although their leadership may be neo-colonial and middle-class, surely many of those in the grassroots who are attracted to surges like INM are not. How should established Indigenous anti-colonial groups relate to these mass mobilizations? Are there specific approaches that are more effective than others? And are there things to avoid?

ZZ: I would say Indigenous anti-colonial groups should engage such movements critically, and not simply take the role of cheerleaders. When large numbers of people are aroused and mobilized, it means they’re thinking about, and discussing, concepts such as colonialism, tactics, strategies, methods, etc.  So it is an opportune time to contribute radical anti-colonial and anti-capitalist analysis, even though some participants in the movement think that such debate “divides” people. I would avoid denouncing such movements, or opposing them, of course, because there are both positive and negative aspects.  Promote the positive and try to illuminate the negative, the contradictions, etc.  As many participants are new and inexperienced, anti-colonial groups can contribute a lot to expanding and radicalizing the movement.

(Traduction française par Média Recherche Action d’une entrevue originalement réalisée par Sketchy Thoughts… Dessin de Zig Zag)

Vous pouvez retrouver Média Recherche Action sur la Coop média de Montréal à



Permalink Submitted by emile on Wed, 01/23/2013 – 16:12.

Reports by indigenous

Reports by indigenous aboriginal spokespersons, in English, French or any of the SAE (Standard Average European) languages are inherently confusing, as has been pointed out by Sapir and Whorf because they will IN ALL LIKELIHOOD be interpreted in the ‘usual way’ (in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves are doing’) by people whose first language is an SAE language.

Communications from indigenous aboriginal groups and from anarchists ‘who are coming from the same worldview’ would benefit from, at a minimum, adding some clarifying symbols to the text, as follows;

҈ to stand for a ‘centre’ like the eye of the hurricane; ‘the universe expressing itself’. [hold down ‘alt’ and enter 1160 to get this character]

This is the aboriginal’s view of himself, all organisms and organizations in nature, and it conforms with modern physics and with the physics of storm-cells in the atmosphere; i.e. the storm-cell is not animated from out of its own centre, it is the flow it is included in, expressing itself.

The SAE language, as pointed out by Sapir, Whorf, Nietzsche, Poincare and others, IDEALIZES the ‘local cell or organism’, by dropping out the relational spatial plenum and imputing subjecthood to the centre, as in ‘the earth rotates’, … giving us, a ‘nonsense’ view, wherein the animative sourcing of the form is imputed to be coming out of the centre of itself. Therefore we need a new symbol for this centre;

ʘ to stand for a ‘centre’ like the linguistically idealized [subjectized] ‘local system with its own locally originating, internal components and processes driven and directed development and behaviour [hold down ‘alt’ and enter 0664 to get this character]

Authoritarianism is based on a governing centre like this ʘ while indigenous anarchism [non-authoritarian] is based on a governing centre like this ҈ .

The ‘dot’ in the centre of the authoritarian centre of governance symbolizes the ‘leader’ who is going to put some or other ‘rational plan’ into action, through this inside-outward asserting leader-follower structure.

When we see a person’s lips move and his tongue flap, we must decide whether what is coming out is ‘the universe expressing itself’, or some idiot rational plan that he has concocted. [The representative democracy of authoritarian sovereign states, is where the people actually put the person with the most impressive rational plan into the central seat of leader-follower authority!!!] Of course, once in power, he can look for some newly arising data to fit his personal rational plan to, …. not the one he ‘sold’ to the crowds to get elected.

What is ‘rationality’, this thing that authoritarian leader-follower organization ʘ uses as the basis of organizing the masses via leader-follower directives.

If we interviewed different ‘authoritarian leaders’ we might get some very different understandings of what was ‘rational’ to the man ‘at the centre’ ʘ who is rolling out the leader follower action plan;

(a) What is most important is that our actions are consistent with what is written in our holy books. It doesn’t matter how the relational-spatial environment is transformed when we fire our nuclear missiles, what will matter is that we will have done our best in the fight of the good against the evil. – Benjamin Netanyahu (or Mahmoud Amadinejad)

(b) I made our very challenging profit plan objectives five years in a row. We paid our fines for pollution and we paid our workers far more than did the farms they left behind them when we talked them into leaving the farms and coming to work for us. – Allen Jones, CEO Cadillac manufacturing division

(c) What is real, is my celebrity status, my mark in the history books. No-one has wasted more students in a single session than I have. Check me out in the Guinness Book of Records, mass murder section, right next to Pol Pot who wasted 26% of the Cambodian population of 8 million [it took him years]. – Adam Lanza

(d) What was good for my grandfather is good enough for me. The way we do things around here has been proven to work over many generations. – John Bull

“The German sociologist Max Weber proposed an interpretation of social action that distinguished between four different idealized types of rationality. The first, which he called Zweckrational or purposive/instrumental rationality, is related to the expectations about the behavior of other human beings or objects in the environment. These expectations serve as means for a particular actor to attain ends, ends which Weber noted were “rationally pursued and calculated.” The second type, Weber called Wertrational or value/belief-oriented. Here the action is undertaken for what one might call reasons intrinsic to the actor: some ethical, aesthetic, religious or other motive, independent of whether it will lead to success. The third type was affectual, determined by an actor’s specific affect, feeling, or emotion – to which Weber himself said that this was a kind of rationality that was on the borderline of what he considered “meaningfully oriented.” The fourth was traditional, determined by ingrained habituation. Weber emphasized that it was very unusual to find only one of these orientations: combinations were the norm. His usage also makes clear that he considered the first two as more significant than the others, and it is arguable that the third and fourth are subtypes of the first two.” —Wikipedia

As in Weber’s analysis, there is usually a combination of ‘rational arguments’; e.g. Authorities can claim that both Libya’s Qaddafy and Syria’s Assad are ‘evil’, but the economics look a lot better for going to war on Qaddafy than for Assad. In Rwanda the good-against-evil ‘rationale’ could have been used, but the economics looked really poor, thus the US authority kept the white knight costume in the closet on this occasion.

RATIONAL ARGUMENT IS NOT THE BASIS IN ABORIGINAL CIRCLE-PROCESS GOVERNANCE [RESTORATIVE JUSTICE]. The circle-process is a ‘relational process’ which becomes a portal for ‘the universe/community expressing itself’ ҈ It allows actions to be guided by heartfelt input coming from the real physical world.

‘Peacemaking circles’ in aboriginal restorative justice are based on assuming that the behaviour of a member of the community is ‘the community expressing itself’, ҈ rather than seeing the behaviour as the emanation of a [subjectized] local system with its own local internal centre driven and directed behaviour ʘ . The relational social plenum is thus seen as the source of conflict in the community and it is the restoring of balance and harmony in the relational web of social context that defines ‘justice’ in the aboriginal peace-making circle ҈

In the authoritarian state which demands leader-follower submission as defined by laws governing individual behaviour ʘ conflict is portrayed as an ‘offender-victim’ transaction and justice is ‘retributive’, focusing on punishing the offender [and often ignoring the victim since the ‘case’ is seen as ‘the offender versus the state’; a failure to comply with authoritarian leader-follower dictates].

In any case, when leadership arises in the aboriginal community, it can be of the ҈ type or it can be of the ʘ type, and more than that, an individual who starts off showing himself as a leader of the ҈ type can, as people begin to gather around him, … quietly transform into the ʘ type; e.g. he can get on a Netanyahu/Ahmadinejad crusade or on a money-seeking campaign.

In terms of ‘violence’ or not and the ‘right image’ needed to ‘grow’ the movement, that is all ‘rational’ stuff that orients to ‘what the participants should do’ ʘ . the actions of the participants in the movement should be defined by ‘the universe expressing itself’ ҈ which means that the participants must become ‘portals’ for the universe/earth/community to defend itself against the rational plans being pushed out by authoritarian leader-follower action roll-out centres, while continuing to cultivate a shift from ʘ leader-followership to ҈ becoming a portal of the universe/community expressing itself.

the person who is a portal for the universe to express itself ҈ does not have to respond to questions from the authoritarian centres like ‘what do you want’, … ‘how can i pay you off’, … what is needed is dissolution of authoritarian centres ʘ so that the highest level of organization will be portals of universe/community expressing itself ҈ .

Permalink Submitted by Anonymous on Wed, 01/23/2013 – 19:48.

But language follows the

But language follows the uniformitarian principle.

Permalink Submitted by emile on Thu, 01/24/2013 – 00:41.

Sapir was a pioneering

Sapir was an early proponent of uniformitarianism in linguistics, and is quoted as follows;

“When it comes to linguistic form, Plato walks with the Macedonian swineherd, and Confucius with the head-hunting savage of Assam” — Edward Sapir, ‘Language’ (1921)

Sapir saw no conflict between “uniformitarianism”, which he subscribed to, and the ‘Sapir-Whorf’ hypothesis. Uniformitarianism, in his view, discredited attempts to link language to race (superiority);

“Uniformitarianist assumptions helped clear the air of nineteenth-century race theories and, as formulated by Sapir’s teacher Franz Boas, were a powerful weapon against the various twentieth-century attempts to link race, intelligence, and inherent ability [e.g. by fascist Germany and Italy, and for different reasons, Stalinist Russia]. … since the oldest language that we have on record—the earliest samples of Bayblonian, Chinese, Greek, and so on—manifest the same grammatical devices as modern languages, one has typically concluded that there is no overall directionality to language change. That is, human languages have always been pretty much the same in terms of the typological distribution of the elements that compose them. …”

“… the extension of uniformitarianism to the denial of links between language, culture and world-view was manifestly not Sapir’s position. Indeed, he believed strongly that such links exist. Such a belief even has his name enshrined in it: the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis. Sapir believed that the structure of one’s language directly shapes one’s view of the world, and that different structures impose on the consciousness a different perception of reality.”

—Frederick J. Newmeyer, “Uniformitarian Assumptions and Language Evolution Research”

Sapir and Whorf are not saying that Turtle Island aboriginals are a more ‘highly-evolved species’ due to their language, … a language whose relational constructs do not ‘hang it up’ on the notion of linear time like ours does. As Whorf put it, the Hopi language is more tied to physical reality than the Indo-European languages, and this view is also in Nietzsche’s critique of European languages’ ‘grammar’; i.e. this practice of creating doer-deed structures DOES NOT reflect physical reality [e.g. ‘lightning flashes’ and ‘the earth rotates’ and ‘farmers produce crops’ DOES NOT reflect physical reality].

“Benjamin Whorf published three articles in the MIT Technology Review titled “Science and Linguistics”, “Linguistics as an Exact Science” and “Language and Logic”. He was also invited to contribute an article to a theosophical journal, Theosophist, published in Madras, India, for which he wrote “Language, Mind and Reality”. In these final pieces he offered a critique of Western science in which he suggested that non-European languages often referred to physical phenomena in ways that more directly reflected aspects of reality than many European languages, and that science ought to pay attention to the effects of linguistic categorization in its efforts to describe the physical world. He particularly criticized the Indo-European languages for promoting a mistaken essentialist world view, which had been disproved by advances in the sciences, whereas he suggested that other languages dedicated more attention to processes and dynamics rather than stable essences. Whorf argued that paying attention to how other physical phenomena are described in the study of linguistics could make valuable contributions to science by pointing out the ways in which certain assumptions about reality are implicit in the structure of language itself, and how language guides the attention of speakers towards certain phenomena in the world which risk becoming overemphasized while leaving other phenomena at risk of being overlooked.” — Wikipedia

it should be clear that the sort of linguistic idealization in European languages; i.e. the reducing of ‘dynamics’ to terms of ‘what things-in-themselves-do’ fits right into the fact that speakers of these languages focus on ‘doing stuff’ out of the context of the physical reality that “The dynaics of the inhabitants are conditioning the dynamics of the habitat at the same time as the dynamics of the habitat are conditioning the dynamics of the inhabitants.” [Mach’s principle].

focusing solely on ‘doing stuff’ is why the habitat is going to hell. as Mcluhan says, the real physical dynamics are the transformation of the relational space we all share inclusion in. this physical reality fact doesn’t even show up on the radar screen of the capitalist enterprise that is focused on ‘making things happen’, ‘getting things done’. for all practical purposes, our European language mesmerizes us into believing that ‘dynamics’ can really be reduced to ‘what things do’. if it was good enough for newton, it was good enough for us. except that it wasn’t good enough for newton. he put ‘user beware’ not only in the ‘author’s prologue’ to Principia, he put it in the summarizing scholium as well. the english language clearly had an architecture that reduced dynamics to ‘what things-in-themselves do’ prior to newton coming up with ‘local force’ in conjunction with cartesian coordinates to make the same reduction, but science was given a huge boost by working on the same simplified view of dynamics. newton warns, … ‘look, you guys, this here’s a neat way of idealizing dynamics and putting them in a form to make time-based predictions, but i had to leave out all the ‘relational spatial’ stuff, the spatial harmonies and interdependent connectedness in the celestial dynamics, so it’s really only a system for describing ‘what’s already in place and persisting’ like the planets in their orbits. this stops radically short of addressing how everything seems to be participating in a continuing relational-spatial transformation.’

ok, few people listened to the warnings of the turtle island aboriginals that we should ‘tread lightly’ because ‘since we are included in the relational space of nature, what we do conditions the space we do it in. we can’t just assume that we are doing our stuff in a big infinite box where the inhabitants are disconnected [independently-existing] causal agents that roam around and interact, the sum total of whose ‘doing of deeds’ adds up to the ‘world dynamic’.

the reason that ‘humanity is killing us’ as philosophers like neyrat say [‘biopolitics of catastrophe’] is for the very reason that we, as a culture [our authoritarian governments and our institutions] actually ‘believe’ that physical dynamics can be realistically rendered in ‘doer-deed constructs’ [linguistic idealization] such as ‘the earth rotates’. hello! it is not ‘the earth’ that is doing the rotating and more than it is the hurricane-pinwheel doing the rotating’. that is just ‘linguistic idealization’ that, like whorf says, has us ‘forget’ about the physical reality, which is that the pinwheeling storm-cell dynamic IS THE ATMOSPHERIC FLOW EXPRESSING ITSELF. i.e. the ‘subject’ that we need to associate the animative sourcing of the turning pinwheel, is the atmospheric flow and the celestial dynamics including solar irradiance etc.

we don’t ‘tread lightly’ in our actions within the transforming relational space we share inclusion in, which really does ‘hurt us if we hurt it’, because our language structures deliver mental models in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves-do’ as if they/we do it in an absolute fixed, empty and infinite operating theatre [euclidian space].

Permalink Submitted by Anonymous on Thu, 01/24/2013 – 06:51.

What about the use of art or

What about the use of art or symbols as communication?

Permalink Submitted by emile on Thu, 01/24/2013 – 20:19.

What about the use of art or

What about the use of art or symbols as communication?

Not only Sapir but also McLuhan pointed out that the symbols we use in our phonetic language have no meaning in themselves, so, symbols used in this way, as stand-alone lego parts that take on meaning in ‘constructions’, keep our minds in the realm of ‘linear time constructions’. I don’t know whether a word starting in L O is going to finish as LOVE or LOATHING and so it is for sentences and paragraphs and entire books [the ending may invert everything said to ‘date’] that are written in phonetic language. ‘Sign language’, as used by aboriginals, does not put you into the linear time realm, but puts your mind into the spatial-relational realm. The skull and crossbones elicits thoughts of death in association with whatever it appears on. That is, it, itself elicits in the viewer a zillion possible relational situations that happen in physical reality. The word masa ‘ytaka is one and the same Hopi word for multiple english words ‘airplane’, ‘dragon-fly’, ‘aviator’; i.e. the word-symbology in the Hopi language ‘communicates’ in terms of relational-spatial context rather than in terms of ‘things-in-themselves’ and ‘what they do in a linear-time causal sequence’ .

So the main issue is whether the symbol-based communications keeps us in the linear time construction realm (rationality, which implies intention or ‘doer-deed events’) versus letting us into the spatial-relational [timeless] realm. The two animated gifs signal the difference, the point source transmitter (jumpstarting causal agent) ʘ implies start and stop cycles while the ‘eternal return’ of the resonance form ҈ implies pure relationality as in a continually transforming relational space.

People living in a culture that has institutionalized linear time based constructions aka ‘rationality’ become frightened by the prospects of letting their mind roam beyond ‘rationality’ into the timeless realm of ‘relationality’. They ‘don’t want to go there’ because the whole rational structure they are grounding their thoughts in starts to shiver and shake, like the support timbers in a mine shaft that is about to cave in. Duality melts into non-duality like a Salvador Dali clock etc. etc.

In the timeless world, space is ‘ONE’ relationally transforming thing and we, as forms that gather and are regathered within in it are ‘space expressing itself’;

And do you know what “the world” is to me? Shall I show it to you in my mirror? This world: a monster of energy, without beginning, without end; a firm, iron magnitude of force that does not grow bigger or smaller, that does not expend itself but only transforms itself; as a whole, of unalterable size, a household without expenses or losses, but likewise without increase or income …” –Nietzsche, ‘The Will to Power’, 1067

“Space is not empty. It is full, a plenum as opposed to a vacuum, and is the ground for the existence of everything, including ourselves.” — David Bohm

The following is an excerpt from conversation between David Bohm and Renée Weber, philosophy professor at Rutgers University, on why the multidimensional medium of space [the plenum] is capable of unfolding the forms we experience in the sensual three-dimensional [plus ‘time’] world.

“Weber: So space is more fundamental and more real than the objects in it. Applying your theory to time, we would have to say that the interval between the moments is the real.

Bohm: It could be considered to be that. But see, if we take the view that the space is what is real, then I think that we have to say that the measure of space is not what is real. The measure of space is what matter provides. So space goes beyond the measure of space. It’s the same with time. If we want to say that the interval is real, then the measure of time cannot be taken as fundamental. Therefore we are already outside of what we ordinarily would call time. But rather, if we have silence and “emptiness,” it does not have the measure either of space or of time. Now in that silence there may appear something which is a little ripple which has that measure. But if we thought that the little ripple was all that there is and that the space between was nothing, of no significance, then we would have the usual view of fragmentation.”

So, to come back to symbols and language and rationality and spatial relationality and tie it all together;

1. Out of the transforming relational spatial continuum [plenum] we select out an ‘event’ so that we are able to ‘discuss’ it, … thanks to ‘language’ and ‘symbols’.

2. Let the event be an aboriginal ‘anarcha-indigenist’ shooting a soldier in a standoff where the aboriginal is defending a sacred forest or an ancestral burial ground.

3. As Nietzsche points out, our SAE language will do this by artificially deconstructing the event “the scenario-that-we-are-considering-in-itself” that we would like to split out and reduce to “the scenario-in-itself”, leaving colonizing history out of it.

4. A person could ‘discuss this’ non-discursively via sign-language [symbolic] gestures by making the barrel of a pistol with his finger and hand and making sounds that sounded like the ‘pew pew pew’ of fired shots, then moving opposite and ‘playing’ the victim and collapsing to symbolically portray dying.

5. In the European language RE-rendering, we use language to SYNTHETICALLY CREATE a notional ‘being-in-itself’ that has the internal capability of jumpstarting his own behaviour; i.e. a language that delivers such constructs as ‘he did it’.

6. The aboriginal ‘takes it for natural’, as Nietzsche and Bohm would, that he is ‘the universe expressing itself’; i.e. he is not ‘where the buck starts and stops’ as the source of the result. The source of the ‘result’ (the physically real story continues with one less participant in the web-of-relations) is, in the mind of the aboriginal, the relational web of social context that he is uniquely situationally included in.

7. ‘Restorative justice’, which seeks to restore balance and harmony within a relational web of social context is natural to the aboriginal’s view of dynamics. ‘Retributive justice’ which sees the ‘causal agent’ as the full and sole jumpstart causal source of the result, follows directly from the European language construct; i.e. ‘he did it’, which splits the relational-spatial unfolding out of the continuum and RE-renders it in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do in time’. In such European language constructs, events ‘unfold in time’ and are seen in a linear time succession as in frames in a video film sequence which portray characters doing stuff ‘in the space out there in front of us’ [could be on another planet and sometimes is, in the films].

8. As McLuhan has observed, our phonetic alphabet based language allows us to RE-render dynamics in ‘visual space’ terms, which takes us [psychologically] out of ‘acoustic space’ cognition, although ‘acoustic space’ is ‘everywhere at the same time, like gravity’; i.e. it is a relational spatial continuum, where the continuum that we are included in is the source of our sensory experience, and we can’t reduce our inclusional experience to something ‘that is out there in front of us’, such as ‘what things-in-themselves are doing by way of a linear time-based succession of actions’.

* * *

So, ‘symbols’ can ‘communicate’ to us in two different ways; by way of ‘rationality’ where ‘context’ is constructed over linear time by ‘content’ or by way of immediate ‘relational context’. If John used European language to say to Mary; ‘I ….. love…. Jane’, her rational cognition has to work like a computer CPU cranking out the solution to a problem, and if she forms her conclusion and runs off in tears, she will miss hearing, ‘… but… I … love… you … more…. than … I … have … ever … loved… anyone.” Instead of ‘spelling it out’, John could have walked over to Mary and given her a love-filled embrace that she had never felt the likes of in her life. Mary would ‘get the message’.

Obviously, as a parent, we can convince our children BOTH (a) that they can develop their own identity as something that jumpstarts out of themselves, where they are to understand themselves as ‘things-in-themselves’ defined by ‘what they do’; i.e. by their intentions and causal achievements, … AND (b) that they are ‘the universe expressing itself’ so that their development and behaviour derives from the relational web of environmental/social context they are, and will always be, uniquely situationally included in.

While the aboriginal languages and grammar, which give time-less renderings, emphasize (b) over (a), the European languages which give time-basd renderings emphasize (a) over (b) which then ‘short-circuits’ access to (b).

In ‘The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha (El ingenioso hidalgo don Quijote de la Mancha)’, Miguel de Cervantes satirizes how a man jumps out of his sense of self as a portal by which ‘the universe/community expresses itself’ and chooses to define himself by his own actions. Like a George W. Bush who sits at the controls of immense power but only briefly, his rationality seeks to achieve greatness for himself with the powers he has in hand; i.e. he is not going to be cheated out of his opportunity to greatness by having the bad luck to live in uneventful times, times without ‘purpose’.

Liberating himself of any trace of a definition of himself associated with his being a portal through which the universe/society is expressing itself, he sets out putting his rational intent to achieve greatness in top priority [ (a) over (b)], fitting the facts together so as to furnish himself with the opportunity he needs to ‘achieve greatness’; i.e. the decadent windmill that is darkly hiding a cache of WMDs that threatens not only Dulcinea, the beauty in the world, but the entire world, … a threat whose vanquishing will establish his greatness for all time, as a single branch in an Aristotelian linear-causal logic tree is wont to do.

The establishing, artificially, of seats of supreme authoritarian power is already the artefact of seeing the world in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do in linear time succession’; i.e. leader-follower organizing falls directly from deconstructing the relational continuum into a [time-based] sequence of doer-deed events, … the incumbent that is put in the driver’s seat with all the levers and knobs controlling the mighty machine right there in front of him, is likely to ask himself ‘what should i do with all this power at my fingertips’. That is, he is likely to think in (a) over (b) mode since that is characteristic in Western society, and according to Whorf and others, our European language and grammar play no small part in shaping our view of self and other in this way.

The downside of putting (a) over (b), of course, is that one cannot realistically ‘disconnect’ ‘what people do’ from ‘how the habitat is conditioned by what people do’, and how the conditioned habitat can condition ‘what people do’ [Mach’s principle and Bohm’s et al view of ‘how the world works’]. E.g;

“Britain’s former MI5 chief harshly criticized (July 21, 2010) the 2003 invasion of Iraq, saying Tuesday that her spy agency warned that Saddam Hussein had no known links to Al Qaeda, that Iraq posed little threat, and that so many in a generation of British Muslims had been radicalized by the action. … Ms. Manningham-Buller’s statements to Britain’s Chilcot Inquiry panel, which is investigating the country’s involvement in the Iraq war, are seen as a dramatic criticism of the testimony former Prime Minister Tony Blair [Sancho Panza] gave to the panel earlier this year supporting the toppling of Saddam Hussein.

The ‘proof’ that rationality, deriving from European language constructs, or in other words from ‘pure being-based symbols’ that are seen as ‘their own jumpstart-causal-authors-of-results’ is everywhere in the institutions of our globally dominating Western culture. At the very core of a community is its sense of ‘justice’ and in Western societies the standard is ‘retributive justice’ which accepts as ‘truth’ ‘rational concepts’ such as ‘he did it’, as if an event, rather than emerging from a relational web of social context [an understanding that leads to restorative justice], is instead seen as rooted fully and solely in the locally originating, internal process driven and directed behaviour of a notional ‘subject being’ or ‘local, independently-existing thing-in-itself’.

finally, i would suggest that exploring answers to your question;

What about the use of art or symbols as communication?

leads inevitably to the figure-and-ground ‘gestalt psychology’ of Mach and McLuhan; i.e. questions of whether the symbols, as used, put our minds into the ‘dualist frame’ of visual space where we see the world as if it is ‘out there in front of us’ and in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves are doing in a linear-in-time based succession of doer-deed actions,… or into the non-dualist non-frame [sense of relational-spatial inclusion] of acoustic space where we understand ourselves as portals through which the world is expressing itself; i.e. where we are continually invited to ‘rise to the situation’ within the transforming relational spatial-plenum, that we are uniquely, situationally included in.

The globally predominating worldview, the one which has been institutionalized in authoritarianism and its cohort institution, ‘retributive justice’, follows from using symbols in such a fashion as puts us into ‘rational’ (a) over (b) mode.

This gives us the ‘Don Quixote Disconnect’ where we understand ourselves as being a ‘thing-in-itself’ defined by ‘what it does’, in other words, a disconnect that allows our ego to hijack our self as the portal through which ‘the universe expresses itself’;

“In its origin language belongs in the age of the most rudimentary form of psychology. We enter a realm of crude fetishism when we summon before consciousness the basic presuppositions of the metaphysics of language, in plain talk, the presuppositions of reason. Everywhere it sees a doer and doing; it believes in will as the cause; it believes in the ego, in the ego as being, in the ego as substance, and it projects this faith in the ego-substance upon all things — only thereby does it first create the concept of “thing.” Everywhere “being” is projected by thought, pushed underneath, as the cause; the concept of being follows, and is a derivative of, the concept of ego. In the beginning there is that great calamity of an error that the will is something which is effective, that will is a faculty. Today we know that it is only a word.” – Nietzsche, ‘Twilight of the Idols’

Permalink Submitted by emile on Wed, 01/23/2013 – 18:29.



The topologies of . ҈ . and . ʘ .


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Permalink Submitted by Anonymous on Fri, 01/25/2013 – 00:51.

Very informative! Further

Very informative! Further reading or resources??

Permalink Submitted by emile on Fri, 01/25/2013 – 05:33.


There’s lots of reading ‘on

There’s lots of reading ‘on it’ that’s been out there for a couple of millennia (e.g. since Heraclitus) but there’s two problems with what’s out there; the first is that it tends to be mono-disciplinary, and the second is that the individual disciplines have gate-keepers that keep squelching it. That ‘works’ because the disciplines fragment our understanding of natural phenomena so that within the disciplines [within the particular fragment], the logic of fragmentation ‘rules’.

Some philosophers have pointed out that in order to ‘get’ the non-dualist view, you have to look ‘across the disciplines’ and that’s ok, but most of the ‘experts’ in the world [who are the gatekeepers of what’s legitimate and what’s not] are only ‘experts’ in ‘their discipline’. So, Richard Dawkins and his cronies are able to defend the orthodox view of biological evolution against Nietzsche’s anti-Darwinism because they have risen to the top of the discipline and are the ‘high-priests’, the supreme authorities. You can’t make it in evolutionary biology if you don’t accept Darwinism you’ll be ‘expelled’ if you go against it. They even made a film on the topic called ‘Expelled’ but they screwed it up by confusing the alternative with ‘religious views’ (‘Creationism’ and ‘Intelligent Design). Nietzsche’s anti-Darwinism wasn’t based on ‘religion’, it was based on ‘non-dualism’; i.e. Nietzsche was on the same page with Mach, Bohm, Poincaré, Schroedinger, understanding the basic world dynamic in terms of a transforming relational spatial-plenum, and Nietzsche did attack all across the various disciplines; he attached mainstream science in general, saying it was anthropomorphism based on human ego. That’s clear from his quote that cited from ‘Twilight of the Idols’. He was saying anything that was contradictory to the view of the physical world of Mach and Bohm et al, … but he had the guts to go after all the disciplines and point out that they were all infected with the same ‘delusion’ of ‘dualism’. That’s why he remains one of the most influential philosophers of all time, because people suspect he was right, and he was. Of course trying to explain non-dualism in a non-mysticism based way is not easy. But, in my view, he did a great job.

So, here’s my recommendations for reading in various disciplines wherein, in each case, the guy with the non-dualist views is ‘squelched’ by the dualist gatekeepers in each discipline. In other words, lots of us have already read some of the works of these ‘heretics’ but if you ever want to discuss their views, holding them to be legitimate, you get comments like;

Also, Mach was a complete crank who denied atomic theory and relativity long past the point at which they had been proven true

These are the ‘A’ students in physics and they get A’s because they subscribe to the orthodox view in physics; i.e. the orthodox view certainly doesn’t buy into ‘non-duality’ of Mach, Bohm, Schroedinger, Poincaré. And they are naturally confident that they ‘know their stuff’ better than the run of the mill student of physics, because the full support of their teachers.

This happens in all the disciplines because every discipline in the sciences is ‘dualist’ and you will be ‘kicked out of the church of orthodox science’ as Mach claimed he was, if you don’t subscribe to ‘dualism’, the notion that matter and space, ‘habitat’ and ‘inhabitant’ are ‘mutually exclusive’. That is what it is all about in all of the disciplines. The ‘A’ students in each discipline are out there policing the crowd when they are not getting stroked by their high priests.

In biology, not only Nietzsche, who was not really a biologist (does this matter in the realm of basic philosophical assumptions?), but also Lamarck, Rolph, Roux and Rüdimeyer were all non-dualists; i.e. they did not split ‘evolution’ into two parts, the ‘organic realm’ and ‘the inorganic realm’. They viewed ‘evolution’ in terms of the transformation of relational space; i.e. something that operated on the ‘whole thing’, the ‘plenum’. As you know, the orthodox view is that each species, those forms that we split out by language; i.e. by word-labelling and word-defining them, are ‘really’ separate things, ‘local, independently-existing material systems’. This is a total ‘crock’ but if want an ‘A’ you are going to have to go with it, and therefore you are going to have to go with all those bullshit inventions to give logical consistency to dualism, the notion that organic forms are local, independently existing material systems with their own locally originating, internal process driven and directed development and behaviour.

Hey, if we can do it for hurricane Katrina, and cover over the physical reality that Katrina is ‘the-relational-space-she-is-included-in-expressing-itself’, then we can do it for anything that looks like it has ‘its own development’ and ‘its own behaviour’. And that’s what we do, and Nietzsche says, we get that from our ‘ego-view’ of ourselves, which is burned into our brains over and over again by our language; ‘I produced those crops’ etc. etc.

How many of those bullshit concepts are we asked to believe in; ‘genes that determine the development of the ‘independent’ organism’, ‘the brain’ as the jumpstart source of consciousness and the director of behaviour, … and it should be made clear right up front that ‘non-dualists’ do not argue with these ‘pictures’, they argue that these pictures are foreground views based on the notion that ‘space is empty’. They are saying that space is not empty, space is full, so that these foreground forms are resonance features that we use our European language to ‘subjectize’ so that we don’t have to explain them as ‘ripples in the relational spatial plenum’ but we can instead impute these forms, these flow-features in the flow, to have their own local jumpstarting powers of driving and directing their own development and behaviour, … hence ‘Katrina, the hurricane’ we portray in the same manner as our ego portrays ourselves, as local, independently-existing form with our own locally originating, internal process driven and directed development and behaviour. ‘Dualism’, the absolute [Aristotelian logic of the excluded third] separation of ‘inhabitant’ from ‘habitat’, is foundational to our orthodox sciences, to all the scientific disciplines. Don’t think for a moment that Mach, Bohm, Schroedinger, Poincaré buy into this, … but their philosophical views don’t count. They are all excellent sciences in the sense of orthodox dualist science but they didn’t believe that ‘orthodox science’ equated to ‘physical reality’. As Mach said;

“Science itself, … may be regarded as a minimization problem, consisting of the completest possible presenting of facts with the least possible expenditure of thought” –Ernst Mach

that was mach saying that, not me, and the highlighting was mach’s, not mine, but you heard what was said about Mach, which might well have been said by a physicist of the stature in his discipline of Dawkins, in his discipline of evolutionary biology [Dawkins would do it with a bit more sophistication in his snarkery];

Also, Mach was a complete crank who denied atomic theory and relativity long past the point at which they had been proven true

so, for the reading list of the non-dualists in each discipline whose views are being de-legitimized by the high priests of the discipline.

Linguistics: Sapir, Whorf, Dan (Moonhawk) Alford (MIT). Sorry, Noam Chomsky and George Lakoff don’t make the cut. They are amongst the high priests of their dualist discipline. As Moonhawk says, Chomsky was the lead assassin in what Moonhawk calls ‘The Great Whorf Hypothesis Hoax’; i.e. the successful attempt to build a strawman in place of Whorf’s hypothesis of ‘linguistic relativity’ and demolish the strawman, claiming to have demolished Whorf’s hypothesis.

See also Dan Alford’s connecting with F. David Peat (co-author with David Bohm).

Again, this is a case of the ‘dualists’ putting down the ‘non-dualist’ views. In this case, the non-dualists are the aboriginals whose language does not infuse ‘linear time’ into its mental models, and Whorf is saying that the aboriginal language ‘passes’ non-dualism while the SAE language reject it.

Biology: Well, lots of biologists have been ‘expelled’ from biology because their research suggested that ‘dualism’ could not possibly explain what their research was showing them (e.g. stem cell research, etc.) and that non-dualism as in Lamarckism was [which conflicts with Darwinism] was a ‘fit’ for their findings. The basic finding that redefines the concept of a ‘cell’ as a local system-in-itself which ‘knows how to reproduce’, wherein the cell nucleus is the ‘brain’ behind the reproduction process, is ‘epigenetics’ and the ‘epigenome’ which show that the cell is really something whose internal inside-outward asserting processes and ‘outside-inward environmental influences are in continual conjugate relation; the cell thus does not jumpstart its own cell-reproduction processes so it does not have to have within it ‘the knowledge’ of how to reconstruct both halves of a cut-in-half planarian back into full organisms. ‘epigenesis’ is the ‘new science’ that acknowledges that environmental conditions orchestrate, from the outside-inward, through cell ‘receptors’ what the cell’s ‘effectors’ need to do. As Bruce Lipton observes, the ‘cell’ can no longer be seen as a ‘unit of being’ but must instead be seen as a ‘unit of perception’ its development is the environment expressing itself.

Now, Lipton is a bit of a ‘loose cannon’ in my view but he is on the right track and that is, that he sees biology through non-dualist lenses while orthodox biology continues to insist on the ‘dualist’ lenses and excommunicates its heretics like Lipton who say things ‘in public’ like the following, in ‘The New Biology’ ;

As is described by Nijhout, genes are “not self-emergent,” that is genes can not turn themselves on or off. If genes can’t control their own expression, how can they control the behavior of the cell? Nijhout further emphasizes that genes are regulated by “environmental signals.” Consequently, it is the environment that controls gene expression. Rather than endorsing the Primacy of DNA, we must acknowledge the Primacy of the Environment!

‘Epigenetics’ is now being used for cancer treatments etc. but it is still ‘fringe stuff’ but because it works, it is being used and you can even see reports on it on ‘Nova’ but that still doesn’t make it ‘mainstream’.
Medicine: Here we have a whole successful field of non-orthodox [non-dualist] medicine known as Oriental medicine and ‘holistic medicine’ which claims that ‘health’ is defined by one’s outside-inward orchestrating — inside-outward asserting dynamics. Yes, you got it. the same view as in epigenetics, and the same view as in Lamarckism and Nietzsche’s anti-Darwinism [Nietzsche’s view of evolution was that it was the conjugation of outside-inward endosmosis and inside-outward exosmosis, and it applied to everything in the universe, as Lamarck had said; i.e. it was the outside-inward influence of ‘les fluides incontenables’ and the inside-outward influence of ‘les fluides contenables’; i.e. the outside-inward influence of ‘the fluids that can contain but which cannot themselves be contained’ such as electricity and magnetism, gravity, thermal flow, in conjunction with the inside-outward influence of regular mineral saturated fluids.

This relates to both biology and medicine and you can read Lamarck’s ‘Recherches sur L’Organisation des Corps Vivans’ online in French. It was never translated into English because the dominant English speaking scientific world was hardline ‘dualist’ and they picked up on one thing that Lamarck had said about a giraffe’s stretching its neck and that such experience within a lifetime was assimilated by its next generation. Lamarck may have the last laugh because this possibility of intra-life-time experience being ‘passed’ on is being confirmed in ‘the new science of epigenetics’.

Meanwhile, for a modern day geneticist and biophysicist’s non-dualist heresy, one can look up Mae Wan Ho, a well-respected scientist who had to quit mainstream biology because of her anti-darwinist views, and started up the ‘Institute for Science in Society’. Mae says;

So I went into biochemistry thinking I would find the answer there. But it was very dull because biochemistry then was about cutting up and grinding up everything, separating, purifying. Nothing to tell you about what life is about.

Biology as a whole was studying dead, pinned specimens. There was nothing that answered the question, what is biological organization? What makes organisms tick? What is being alive? I especially detested neo-Darwinism because it was the most mind-numbing theory that purports to explain anything and everything by “selective advantage”, competition and selective advantage.

I spent a lot of time criticizing neo-Darwinism until I got bored. What neo-Darwinism leaves out is the whole of chemistry, physics, and mathematics, all science in fact. You don’t even need any physiology or developmental biology if everything can be explained in terms of selective advantage and a gene for any and every character, real or imaginary.

Mae is also a signatory to ‘A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism’, but if you look that up on rational Wiki, you will see that she is being smeared with the charge of coming from ‘Creationism’ and ‘Intelligent Design’ [religion], which she is not. At least rational Wiki allows objections posted on their articles and in this case there is one posted that says;

We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged. There is scientific dissent from Darwinism. It deserves to be heard.

Justice: Those who are heaving into ‘restorative justice’ are non-dualists; i.e. they hold the view that the inhabitant’s behaviour is NOT independent of the habitat’s or community’s behaviour. This is just common sense, but our Western dualist Justice system would have us believe that that the behaviour of an individual derives fully and solely from the interior of the individual, and it therefore formulates ‘laws of individual behaviour’ while remaining blind to how crony groups can condition the habitat so as to screw individuals who are not in the crony group (and their families and children) to the point that they can put up with the INJUSTICE no more and lash out against the crony collectives who are protected by the police because the dualist view of Western Justice is blind to non-dualist ‘Mach’s principle effects’; “The dynamics of the inhabitants are conditioning the dynamics of the habitat at the same time as the dynamics of the habitat are conditioning the dynamics of the inhabitants’.

You can read Kay Pranis’ books on restorative justice ‘Peacemaking Circles’ etc. and you will find the aboriginal non-dualist view as the grounding principles.

Politics: Well this one is easy. Western politics is the epitome of the dualist view, which as i have been writing about here, is the foundation of ‘authoritarianism’, so there is plenty of reading material expressing ‘anti-authoritarian’ views, but not all of is ‘non-dualist’. For non-dualism one has to go the Zapatistas and to ‘decolonizing’ initiatives, which takes you into governance systems based on non-dualist ‘restorative justice’, as already mentioned.

Let’s see now; so far, Physics, Philosophy, Linguistics [key], Biology, Medicine, Justice, and Politics have been mentioned as all having within them a conflict between ‘dualist’ and ‘non-dualist’ views, with the dualist views common to all scientific disciplines continuing to hold on to the ‘gate-keeping’ power, but in all cases, ‘beginning to lose ground’.

There’s also ‘Anthropology’ and you can see how that has the conflict through Franz Boas, Sapir and Whorf, and there’s ‘economics’ and you can see the conflict in Frédéric Neyrat’s Biopolitics of Catastrophe (economics related);

“In extending his living space in a manner that destroys the space of others, he destroys his own space. Not initially his inside space, his ‘self’, but his outside space, this real outside-of-self which nourishes his ‘inside-of-self’. The protection of this outside space now becomes the condition without which he is unable to pursue the growth of his own powers of being.” — Frédéric Neyrat, ‘Biopolitics of Catastrophe’

And then there’s “History” where Howard Zinn gets into it ‘implicitly’ in ‘A People’s History of the United States’, where he points out that ‘executioners’ and ‘victims’ have polar opposite irreconcilable views on history. This is termed a ‘starkly dualist’ representation but Zinn is saying that one can’t split it apart into ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’ and says that perspectives in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ are bogus.

“The deaths caused by the Allies were less, but still so massive as to throw doubt on the justice of a war that includes such acts.’. It becomes quite apparent that Zinn simply does not view war as the fault of one people as compared to other people, but the fault of man kind as a whole.”

McLuhan would say that instead of looking at what the two war machines do, we should look at how our relations with one another and the habitat are transformed. Zinn is implying the same thing by showing how historical perspective in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do’ is ‘illusion’. That is, he is speaking in the terms of ‘restorative justice’ wherein the behaviours of individuals [states and/or humans] must be understood as deriving from the relational web of social context the individuals are included in.

To sum-up, … ‘united we stand, divided we fall’. The non-dualist views [we are all capable of both and it is matter of whether we put dualism over non-dualism or non-dualism over dualism] don’t ‘build’ because of our public acceptance of fragmenting ‘how the world works’ into separate dualist ‘disciplines’ [this fragmentation is self-similar to the fragmentation in the dualist view] and putting faith into the ‘high priests’ of each discipline so that ‘non-dualism’ is always a bridesmaid and never a bride. The ‘non-dualist scientists’ are not going to change the views of those whose respect and rewards and sense of self derives from their status within a discipline. This is a tremendous ‘lock-in’ to dualism.

As the arguments between the non-dualist physicists with the dualist physicists have shown, … physical phenomena can always be described in terms of ‘linguistic idealization’ which reduces the ‘transforming relational spatial-plenum’ to dynamics constituted in terms of ‘what things-in-themselves do in time’.

But the ‘incompleteness’ of dualist science shows up in the fact that while science can describe very accurately ‘what things in themselves do’, dualist science cannot even ‘touch’ how the space we all share inclusion in is transformed in conjugate relation to ‘what things do’. There is no ‘conjugate relation’ between ‘what things do’ and the space that we are included in, in dualist science because dualist science uses the assumption of absolute space as a measuring frame for ‘what things-in-themselves do’. That’s the whole non-dualist point, the measurements themselves, which are in ‘absolute space’ and ‘absolute time’ are ‘not physical reality’. In Bohm’s terms, ‘the little ripples’ are what we measure but they are not the physical reality, the physical reality is the transforming relational spatial-plenum in which the ripples emerge;

“Weber: So space is more fundamental and more real than the objects in it. Applying your theory to time, we would have to say that the interval between the moments is the real.

Bohm: It could be considered to be that. But see, if we take the view that the space is what is real, then I think that we have to say that the measure of space is not what is real. The measure of space is what matter provides. So space goes beyond the measure of space. It’s the same with time. If we want to say that the interval is real, then the measure of time cannot be taken as fundamental. Therefore we are already outside of what we ordinarily would call time. But rather, if we have silence and “emptiness,” it does not have the measure either of space or of time. Now in that silence there may appear something which is a little ripple which has that measure. But if we thought that the little ripple was all that there is and that the space between was nothing, of no significance, then we would have the usual view of fragmentation.”

What has been discussed by Whorf and Alford et al, applies to language in general, including the languages of science;

“Finally, our Euclidean geometry is itself only a sort of convention of language; mechanical facts might be enunciated with reference to a non-Euclidean space which would be a guide less convenient than, but just as legitimate as, our ordinary space ; the enunciation would thus become much more complicated, but it would remain possible. Thus absolute space, absolute time, geometry itself, are not conditions which impose themselves on mechanics ; all these things are no more antecedent to mechanics than the French language is logically antecedent to the verities one expresses in French.” – Henri Poincare, Science and Hypothesis

what we are waiting for is when the ‘riff-raff’ like ourselves no longer believes the high priests of science in all these disciplines because they are all ‘dualist’. its not that it is not useful to model Katrina using linguistic idealization that endows subjecthood on her. It is very useful in the sense of ‘predicting in time’ ‘what notional things-in-themselves do’ or ‘may soon do’ etc., … but such prediction obscures the more comprehensive non-dualist reality that the storm-cell is ‘the relational space that it is included in, ‘expressing itself’. Katrina is a response to differential concentrating of thermal energy in the flowing, relational space of the atmosphere, her behaviour does not jumpstart out of her notional ‘local self’, the notional aspect which comes from our European language, as Nietzsche, Whorf et al have observed. Storm cells are manifestations of the non-duality in Mach’s principles wherein the ‘inhabitant cells’ and the ‘habitat’ are not ‘mutually exclusive, but mutually inclusive’. to say that the cells are ‘things-in-themselves’ is ‘all talk’, … all ‘European language talk’. You can say that to an aboriginal ‘individual’ as well, but not to an egotist member of the Church of Dualism aka Western Authoritarian, Retributive Justice-imposing society.