This is the name of Umberto Eco's final book, to come out in English in a few days with the title "Chronicles of a Liquid Society".
Eco is smarter than you. A man with a library with tens of thousands of books - more than half of them read - you can consider him the "leading
edge" of the human psyche, taking a look around the corner from the vantage point of his copious knowledge base - from a scholar of Thomas Aquinas,
to a semiotician who helped bridge Peirces semiotics with biology and psychology, and a founder of the field of biosemiotics, to a medieval scholar
and world renown novelist - Eco's perspective is a very informed one.
Eco is also the exact opposite of the personality that prevails at ATS. He is a skeptic. His novels are about mocking the naiveté, gullibility and
carelessness of occultists. His characters are pretentious, ostentatious, and chronically deceiving themselves as they idealize the presence of a
"secret" which they are forever just on the verge of receiving. Such a world is insane; and as a resident of Milan, it's perhaps reasonable to
assume it derives from his real-life experiences of the way life actually works.
Liquidity - the Flood of Noah - the Collapse of the Tower
Is the bible just a book, or are we, rather, the book, which cannot help but allegorically encode into its deepest narratives the nature of its
self-organization as a creature? What are the animals in Noah's boat? What is the boat? Or for that matter, what is the flood?
Is the flood a reference to the collapse of civilization that archeologists believe occurred in 1177 BCE? If so, the flood speaks to a set of
conditions which, once they obtain, leads to the collapse of civilization. But this still says nothing about liquidity.
This chart will give you a sense of what "liquidity" means - and why it is a lawful precursor of major suffering - the flood - which teaches
arrogant human minds what they still don't know about themselves.
A book I'm working on extends the ideas of CS Peirce's triadic semiotics - the basic view that reality is made of "semiosis", and that all
communication/meaning is triadic in structure. Thus, all of reality, as conceptualized by me, is a communication between one pole and another pole
through the mediation of a "third" property. Firstness, secondness, and thirdness, are profoundly real phenomena permeating everything that exists.
Here, I show how firstness, secondness and thirdness exist in human minds, in terms of the way social-emotions control, or gate, the flow of
capacities so that the social is considered as the unit of selection - not the individual.
The logic is obvious once you unpack shame, pride and compassion from their mundane usage, and think about it in terms of the effect these
emotions/affects/feelings have on our experience of time i.e. our experiences of ourselves as temporal beings. Temporality is the source of the self,
and thus, whatever extends temporality is basically that which provokes the self into existence.
The ancient Hebrews seem to get how significant shame was
25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
In the Hebrew, this is:
וַיִּהְיוּ שְׁנֵיהֶם עֲרוּמִּים, הָאָדָם וְאִשְׁתּוֹ; וְלֹא, יִתְבֹּשָׁשׁוּ.
The modern project is based upon a fantasy that a human being can exist without shame; but look at how this fantasy is falling apart as we speak.
Apparently, females don't like being sexually violated, but up until now a culture has existed in Hollywood and elsewhere in which females are
systematically exploited for sex by rich, powerful (and often ugly) males. Do these females actually like being groped, touched, molested, even when
they find the other person weird, creepy, or unattractive? A normal person doesn't assent to a sexual relationship they don't want; but in Hollywood
- a land of idealizations (i.e. perceptions, not truths) human beings we call "celebrities" more or less evolve into people with dissociative
disorders where one part of their consciousness knows the truth of what people do (criminal acts) and why they do it (what philosophy or set of
beliefs motivate this behavior), while another part, the part that goes in public and presents himself and the business he's a part of in a certain
way, acts as if that other part doesn't exist.
A mind this shrivelled and patchy on the inside cannot possibly think coherently about the nature of reality; all that the mind (very little) is good
at is charting its own interests (in the social world he lives in), but even then, he's not very good at it.
Take Kevin Spacey. Is this man happy? Do you think his consciousness at the present moment is relaxed and at ease within itself? With itself? Does he
even have a sense of who he is, and why he feels as he feels? A developmental psychologist like myself can try to be compassionate, knowing that a
Neo-Nazi father and being exposed to the shameful abuse of his older brother and sister, Spacey's mind learned to 'latch on' to those qualities
which his idealizing and psychopathic father privileged. He avoided the same abuse by "hiding" from the knowledge that he had; in other words,
before dissociation kicked In as his regulatory strategy, traumatic affect via observing your father abuse/rape your brother/sister forced his brain
into taking this strategy to defend itself.
This is fact. This is how reality actually works. Human's are not involved in any allegory in the world, and if it seems that way, it is truly an
astonishing emergent property of our collective meaning-making - not anything any individual can claim any sort of sense of individual identity from.
So what is the flood? It is the dissociation of shame states (slowed down consciousness) and the idealization of self that operates on a largely
defensive going-on-being state.
“A preliminary view might be that the flow of temporality, an awareness of time passing, is what is most basically human, but we can become
frozen in time or caught in mere, defensive going-on-being; shame is a signal of the new and the strange, the uncanny and even the monstrous. The
disruptions of temporal flow may deeply disturb us, but they are crucial for any process of freedom and individuation.” – Ladson Hinton, Hessel
Willemsen, Temporality and Shame: Perspective from Psychoanalysis and Philosophy; pg. 2, Routledge, 2017
This book, just recently published, is providing what appear to me to be astonishing insights into the deep relationship between temporality and
shame, and thus, the localization of our being in the sort of experience which our cultures absolutely hate: shame.
To be an individual, and to seek your individuality, yet not want to address the shame which marks you off from different people, is an absurdity
which leads to the "liquidifcation" of human minds which are addicted to states which make them feel pride, but don't much care for the
contradiction, hypocrisy, and so, insane unpredictability, which exists between states, all for the sake of keeping reality "fast and fun", but of
course, this is only how the "victory" minded self-state experiences reality. This state is not sustainable, which is why it isn't a good idea to
philosophize from the perspective of such a state - given its proneness to over-inflation (i.e. a pridefulness driven by a deficiency consciousness).
As even Jung once wrote about a letter he sent to Freud,