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Saturday, May 4, 2024

RAW and the green grass

 The above image is via Brian Dean from RAW Semantics, who writes (on X), "From right at the end of chapter 6 of The New Inquisition, where RAW writes about Schrödinger's 'the sum of all minds is one' (see my latest blog scrawl). Bob then adds: 'Did you get it that time?'  (Non-plural implies non-local in this context)."

I asked Brian if he made the meme, and he answered, "Yes, with some help from AI of course. I fed it a ridiculously convoluted and not very specific prompt, expected nothing - and it returns this, complete with a sage who looks like RAW. Quite spooky, as if it read my mind!"

See the comments here for further discussion  of the latest RAW Semantics post. 


Lvx15 said...

Seems like another, novel way of restating the Buddhist concept of Emptiness. Didn’t recall this in that book, but thumbs up.

Lvx15 said...

Also, another plug for a deep discussion around this topic for Egginton's recent book, The Rigor of Angels.

From the introduction:
"The greatest wizard, Borges speculated, would be the one whose spell is so convincing that he would fool even himself into believing its appearances were real."

Brian Dean said...

At the start of The New Inquisition, RAW quotes Nietzsche, from Twilight of the Idols. To save me typing out the quote, I'll paste it from a different translation (a slightly different wording from RAW's):

'With the unknown, one is confronted with danger, discomfort, and care; the first instinct is to abolish these painful states. First principle: any explanation is better than none... A causal explanation is thus contingent on (and aroused by) a feeling of fear. The "why?" shall, if at all possible, result not in identifying the cause for its own sake, but in identifying a cause that is comforting, liberating, and relieving.' (End quote)

I think with different conceptual models, whether we adopt a more science-grounded "outward"-looking view, or a more "introverted" contemplative mode ("Who am I? What's the purpose of all this?", etc), Nietzsche's insight applies, but in a different way with each, so that the two (or more) different models may end up without any possible "reconciliation" that makes sense - but they nevertheless each still remain valid, in parallel, so to speak. RAW often prefers the more science-grounded framing, but not always.