Heb. for "Without End"
the process of development.
As I continue to read and learn more about the nature of this universe of ours, I've come to think that Jacob von Uexkull - the German aristocrat,
philosopher and biologist - captured the living process best with his term "point-counterpoint".
In essence, this idea really isn't that much different from the connotation suggested by yin-yang:
One can at least imagine the ancient Chinese mystics being led to accurate deductions about the phenomena they interact with in terms of this concept:
you are the yin, and the object you interact with is the yang. The "object" refers to anything that appears in your mind. The entirety of evolution
can be conceptualized in this way, with the cell being the 'yin', and the salient objects in its environment (such as glucose gradients) interacted
with as "yang".
If you accept this premise, then we can better understand how the Ein Sof and the process of human development are related.
I always talk about evolution because the nature of what we are, no matter how much your feelings tell you otherwise, is always a function of a
profoundly mysterious and simply inexplicable complementarity at the very root of reality.
Can you contemplate eternity? Yes. Will it overwhelm you and trigger an anxiety attack? Inevitably. In the biosemiotic scheme of things, the
contemplation of eternity is the 'highest scalar object' - the highest and most abstract thing to be conceptualized is the concept of eternity
vis-à-vis the process of living. See the point-counterpoint?
The problem with the human being in history is how the experience of eternity has been interpreted. Because eternity means "forever", which implies
not just "never-ending", but also, "nothing new", "nothing different", it's not very hard to imagine how a human being, living in a body and
and observing this concept from that vantage point, would experience its existence, self, and relationships, as somehow unreal.
The resulting experience of derealization of the external world accompanied by a depersonalization of the sense of your own realness, is a profoundly
grueling and painful experience of self. But the experience in itself does not come with a ready-made interpretation. Someone has to interpret; and
over history, there are plenty of different ways of interpreting this experience, but the most popular appears to be the one that was most compatible
with the civilizational process - its hierarchical structuring and non-stop "activity". This interpretation prevailed wherever the Indo-Europeans
went. In Iran and India, it became the Vedas; and spread across the Caucasus and into Turkey, southeastern Europe, and Eastern Europe, founding
cultures that eventually would evolve into the tribes known by the ancient Greeks.
But let's not mythologize the Indo-Europeans! They've been demonized primarily because they've been sacralised. They are humans. The Egyptians, and
ancient Sumerians similarly founded their own defunct cultures based in similar delusions. The response the human being takes to the elements involved
in civilization drastically changes him. The metaphor of Cain and Abel captures this archetypal human situation. Cain is invested in 'his land'. The
very commitment and level of work with inanimate life, for the purpose of building up a surplus to be held over others, interferes with Cain's
representation of being. YHWH means "being" in Hebrew. The metaphorical representation of Cain and Abel, when understood in archetypal terms,
presents Abel (from Hevel, meaning "vapor") and Cayin (from Qana, "to acquire") as different modes of being. Cain - or the acquisitive mode - is
already a perverted mode of being that fails to represent the intrinsically dyadic nature of reality. Nobody who understands Yin-Yang is going to get
caught up with the concept of 'acquisition', as it is basically sure-fire way of becoming unhappy, depressed, and caught up in perceptions of
'deficiency' in self and existence. Abel - or vapor - goes with the flow, yes; but he also tends to a living being; Abel is a pastoralist, and being
a pastoralist is metaphorically represented as 'tending to a living animal'. This 'living animal' differs from the inanimate life of Cain. YHWH,
or Being, accompanies the existence of Abel and not Cain.
These stories are of course no mere stories, but profound allegories for what even cognitive science could learn a great deal from.
Yet, also true, is that they were created by Humans. Whether in the orient, in the middle east, or in pre-socratic Greece, humans were certainly
evolving very profound understandings of the humans relationship to the Universe, but I am profoundly skeptical in Julian Jaynes bizarre theory that
consciousness is 'brand new'. Jaynes attempted to persuade the appropriately educated people in the sciences (not succeeding) that consciousness was
a brand new invention, essentially superimposing the behavioristic attitude towards reflexive cognition as being akin to being 'unconscious', and
even worse, asininely attempting to describe human beings with anatomically modern craniums - showing all the forebrain growth that we possess - as
lacking the power of reflection.
My feeling is, Jaynes had a jaded relationship to consciousness, as many people do.
Any why is that? This entire thread so far has focused on yin-yang, or point-counterpoint, even presenting the humans relationship with the universe,
or our own experience of time in relation to the timeless, as being akin to this dynamic. But this dynamic is not borne de-novo. It has preceding
metaphors which structure how the self represents the Universe - that is, what the self feels in its own 'counterpoint' - its body. How the body is
regulated by the caregiver in early life is a structuring process that will effect how you cognize later on. "Not being known" as a self will leave
your body with those representations. Motivation circles through these dynamics, taking from 'what has been done with me' to 'what I want to do'.
It's childishly obvious, yet we are far too late in life before we have the cognitive wherewithal to recognize how powerful early-life experiences
The Other person "gets into your body", informing expectancies. The Universe, when you get old enough to contemplate, "get in", long before you
ever know cognitively how your feelings have been structured by caregivers.
Everything is Yin and Yang. The metaphorical growth that our nervous system moves through transforms feelings from others towards the self into
feelings of body; from here, feelings of body inform 'what to expect from the Other'. In a world where Other's disown connection with one another,
where we've been bullied and hurt, is any real surprise that Gnosticism arose, or that the existing Universe and the temporal Order would be deemed