modmyth

Coming Out: Confessionals

787 posts in this topic

@Raptorsin7  I never thought too much about it growing up, but whenever I go back to visit my parents, the differences between different parts of Metro Vancouver are way more obvious: e.g. Burnaby, different parts of Vancouver, New West. Now that I think about, probably most of the small buisinesses near my house are Indian owned.

My mom used to teach and a lot of her students were Indian. I acquired a taste for Indian snack foods and sweets because some of her students would randomly give her samosas and Indian sweets and what not. Those sweets were delicious but definitely felt like they were going to make me fat, haha.

I used to go to an elementary school which was across from the most ghetto school in Surrey, or at least, it had that reputation both inside of Surrey and outside of it (West Whalley, which then became Kwantlen Park). It was pretty bad. I got bullied because kids thought I was poor because I was not at all brand and image-conscious when in reality my parents were fairly thrifty and saving money for vacations and me and my brother's university (which is a pretty Asian parent thing to do). Also, I dressed like a tomboy. I heard the high school was much worse though, just anecdotally, with drugs and gangs and whatnot.

There was a girl in my grade that used to go to that same elementary, who I ended up meeting with years later during uni. She ended up going to a different high school because she had excellent grades, and her friends told her not to go because it's not where "people with a future" go to. Harsh. I also went to a French Immersion high school in a different area because I hated going to that school.

Where I grew up, around my actual house, it felt pretty safe/ sheltered.

Edited by modmyth

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10 hours ago, modmyth said:

@Dumuzzi I'm curious what it looked like, where you used lived. And also, just about Singapore in general, I don't know too much about the place, other than just generally, they have their shit together by Asian standards.

I definitely don't miss the heat or humidity either. Walking off the plane feels like being smothered in a giant blanket, although once you leave the metro area proper, it's a lot more tolerable.

I was actually going to do another post about public housing, including what it looks like inside. It's unfathomably small by most standards of living, and very small even for the limited amount of space available in a pricey, metropolitan core.

Well, you can just do an image search, I don't have any of my own photos:

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=singapore+hdb+flats&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiV6tmW88bpAhVL-yoKHZ1sBn0Q_AUoAXoECA0QAw&biw=1920&bih=969

The unit I used to live in was on Commonwealth Drive, in Queenstown. Although an old building, it was spacious, with marble flooring, only ten stories, plenty of green spaces around and plenty of spacing between the individual HDB units. It felt very comfortable and relaxed. It was near Holland Village, which is a major expat area, with a lot of great restaurants, food courts, cafes and expat supermarkets like cold storage. It was only about a 4-minute walk from the MRT station, which is a godsend in the tropics. Unlike in Hong Kong, there is no cool season, so the heat and humidity are constant, but at least you get a nice sea breeze in most places.

Yeah, Singapore is great, it is like a cleaner, more modern, better run, tropical version of London, though overall I prefer London for many reasons, where I also lived for a while. 

 

 

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@Dumuzzi  I wasn't sure if there was great variability in the public housing, but that sounds a lot more luxurious than pretty much all the public housing I've seen. Especially the older buildings from the 60s-70s; those all look a bit (or really) on the decrepit side. It's like the government is just waiting for them to be practically falling apart and possibly a safety hazard before they rip it down and build something new.

I've never been to HK during the cold season, but I've heard that it can get relatively chilly and drafty (since a lot of people don't using heating there at all).

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STUFF RACHEL BLOOM DOES: So I wanted to see what Rachel Bloom was up since I watched her on youtube about 10 years ago. She had a viral video ("Fuck Me Ray Bradbury", very literal and to the point, right?) Apparently she has a tv show that ended fairly recently. She's pretty funny. 

GENTLEMEN DON'T PREFER BRUNETTES: Sometimes metaphors get abused, literally. For art.

A FRED ASTAIRE ANTI-ROMANCE: Heartwarming. And statistically probable. Which means your marriage, and your marriage (you're probably not the exception, but by all means, beat the odds!).

IT'S RAINING MEN (How unfortunate): The premise of this is like some kind of alien ritual to me; I have never done what this video is satirizing about.

So there is a video somewhere of an almost 90-year-old Ray Bradbury in his apartment watching Rachel Bloom's video on youtube; it's possibly funnier than the video itself. Apparently he approved and she got to meet him before he died.  Kudos for getting to meet your literary hero, however you do. 

Humour doesn't fix or heal everything, but it helps.

Like a party in your brain.

 

Edited by modmyth
Ever the lighthearted cynic.

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6 hours ago, modmyth said:

@Dumuzzi  I wasn't sure if there was great variability in the public housing, but that sounds a lot more luxurious than pretty much all the public housing I've seen. Especially the older buildings from the 60s-70s; those all look a bit (or really) on the decrepit side. It's like the government is just waiting for them to be practically falling apart and possibly a safety hazard before they rip it down and build something new.

I've never been to HK during the cold season, but I've heard that it can get relatively chilly and drafty (since a lot of people don't using heating there at all).

Yeah, it's interesting, Sing was largely copying the UK in terms of its public housing programmes, but did a much better job of it. The ones in the UK tend to be desolate, post-apocalyptic wastelands, except for the few that were unaccountably put in upscale neighbourhoods, like Chelsea and Kensington.

This is a long discussion, but Sing, like HK, faced a major problem with lack of space, it is actually only about a third the size of HK, although the land is largely flat, so most of it can be built on. This is why they established the Housing Development Board (HDB) and started public housing developments in the sixties, alongside public transit developments, building them around public transit hubs, especially the new MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) and LRT (Light Rail Transit) stations. They also made sure to create mixed use neighbourhoods, unlike in the UK and US, were single-use zoning was a hallmark of postwar development. This is important, because single-use zoning creates dead suburbs, with no facilities, whereas mixed-use zoning developed shops and amenities around new neighbourhoods, so you can access a lot of services within new HDB developments, such as shops, restaurants, banks, GPs, libraries, etc... 

My HDB building had a food court in the basement that was open 24 hours, with Malay, Indian and Thai dining options. A few minutes walk took me right into the heart of the Commonwealth HDB development, with a large open-air hawker centre, with dozens of food stalls, doctor's offices, all kinds of shops and a large Malaysian supermarket. If I needed my ex-pat items, Holland village was a 15-minute walk or 2-minute taxi ride away. Like most Hongkongers, Singaporeans don't generally own a car as it is just too impractical and taxes and road fees are ridiculous. But, it works, because I've never encountered a traffic jam in all my years living there and the air in unfathomably clean compared to other major cities in the world, let alone Asia in general.

Another thing I like about Singapore is that it really is an English-speaking city. About a third of the population are native English speakers (despite having Chinese, Indian, Malay or Eurasian heritage) and the rest are also fully fluent in English, or at least the local dialect known as Singlish. Culture-wise, HK is a lot more interesting and vibrant, but I think when it comes to the standard of living for the average citizen, not the super-rich, it beats HK hands down.

Edited by Dumuzzi

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ON CHILDHOOD, PSYCHOMETRY, HALLUCINATED BEINGS, AND “THE VELVETEEN RABBIT”:

Quote

“Real isn't how you are made,' said the Skin Horse. 'It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.'

'Does it hurt?' asked the Rabbit.

'Sometimes,' said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. 'When you are Real you don't mind being hurt.'

'Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,' he asked, 'or bit by bit?'

'It doesn't happen all at once,' said the Skin Horse. 'You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand.”

From "The Velveteen Rabbit" (if you want to read it with the original pictures, here it is; it's very short. https://digital.library.upenn.edu/women/williams/rabbit/rabbit.html

I did sometimes read children's books when I was a child, even though I also read adult books voraciously. Now, I wouldn't say this book traumatized me directly (not like "Watership Down" did), but it's impossible for me to read this book still without 'ugly crying' even as an adult. Guilty as charged: I am very sentimental and sensitive at my core.

A CHILDHOOD INJUSTICE: When I was a child, I had a huge collection, probably at least 50, and a whole corner of my bedroom was devoted to being their home and hangout spot. In retrospect, I find myself wondering if this made it impossible for me to give away any of my stuffed animals; even up to the age of 10 or so, I was convinced by this idea that stuffed animals had souls, so I continued to treat them and think of them as if they were sentient. Even if I didn't talk to them directly, I was constantly concerning myself with how they were feeling and made sure to put them all together in a specific and comfortable way so that they wouldn't get lonely, and many of them had specific personalities, preferences, feelings and thoughts, etc., along with specific names. You know, what it is typically considered very childish stuff. Anyways, I came back home one day and my mom had given away at least 80% of my stuffed animal collection because she thought I was too old for that shit. I did actually feel traumatized by that, to be honest. She told me: now it's going to go to a child needs them more. Big surprise: I really didn't care though. I kept thinking about how they were at the second-hand store, stuffed in some bag, or possibly going to get thrown out and then in a landfill somewhere or BURNT, and probably reading "The Velveteen Rabbit" didn't help... (I kept thinking of these souls that were possibly trapped in those "bodies" but had no way to communicate normally, and that stressed me the hell out.) And also, they are all FRIENDS and now know each other, how could you split them up?!

ANIMISTIC THINKING?: I think on some level, I was totally convinced that souls or thoughtforms could come into them (or technically, also in other objects, if intended, it's just that we don't relate to other objects like that especially as adults unless they're idols (in the traditional sense of the word) or objects of religious worship or spiritual significance. What's the material difference between said object and some other object? Nothing, really. We believe that it means what we want it to mean, and then we imbue it with energy and intention, most often over time.) Anyway, I have had this tendency to continue to believe this even as an adult; like if a child was very lonely, for example, some combination of desire and attachment would either create a strong thoughtform of sorts or attract a thoughtform to said object (that might be considered autonomous or semi-autonomous in some ways, and so could be said to have a "soul" in that way.) Sometimes as an adult, I have returned consciously to this notion and contemplated it, here and there.

To be honest, some of the strangest and most vivid thoughtforms I have seen with my "full-spectrum vision", whatever I want to call it, has been at places that children go regularly, like at schools and playgrounds, and not anywhere else. Like different sorts of monsters, and these 12-15 feet tall spindly, long-limbed, long-fingered beings. Tiny little hobbit/ gnome shaped things. Some of it's like classically creepy; some of it is just odd. The feeling that I have gotten is that these are some combination of being manifested (both attracted to and created) by children's loneliness and propensity towards a certain type of fear... 

Also, have seen some really questionable looking beings/ things in mental health hospitals; I wonder why. Like these literal products of people's dissociations and WHOLE PIECES OF PEOPLE'S PSYCHES just wandering around like that; and other things. For example: a human-shaped figure wandering around that was very intensely dark like a black hole, in both appearance and 'feeling' [like the complete absence of anything positive; although not necessarily feeling malevolent or sinister. It felt quite powerful. It behaved like it was completely amnesiac or unselfware, as if it was a person with Alzheimer's that was perpetually grasping for something that it could not quite remember. Based on empathy: this particular one was a product of a complete and severe conscious dissociation as a result of someone's trauma. Someone had clearly wanted to sever and cut out this aspect of themselves (deemed ugly, unacceptable, unredeemable) completely and had succeeded well enough in doing so and leaving these aspects of themselves here in this mental hospital.

PRAYER BEADS: I have a few antique items, including a necklace from Tibet that's a couple of hundred years old that I acquired as a teenager when I went to China; Buddhist prayer beads. These sorts of artifacts are pretty common; they cost a decent amount, but didn't fetch a very high price compared to if it had been in a better state of repair. It hadn't been so well taken care of or preserved through time; it had clearly seen better days.

It looked a lot like this:

PM-K04_1024x1024.jpg?v=1527361145

Well, something drew my eye and my heart to it immediately. I had to have it.

Later, after holding it in my hands for a bit, I could feel the strong imprints of the person who used to own it. Their conviction and intent (this was in fact an object of intense focus), and it had been “loved” and used for years in this way. Like grooves embossed into the invisible energy body of this object through daily devotion and focus, over and over again. And I saw spontaneous flashes of a person's house, this person's face (?), the beads being used for their traditional intended purpose, moved between thumb and index finger. A powerful echo of the way they thought, felt, and processed; the mind. The sense of their soul. The fusion and intimate marriage to their landscape, religion and culture. Their beliefs, the overall shape of it.

We are not objects like that, but we are not so different, in a way. Our energy bodies also tell similar stories. Who loved us and how we loved ourselves. The stories we've done ourselves, the paths we've tread. There are these stubs of desires that appear like questions in us all: who do we want to become and what do we want to experience?

(This is how I've found my way back to people who I have loved across lifetimes; people are open books, in that way. We are shaped the most by the ones we love truly, and that love us. Or whatever it is that we love and hold an affinity for the most.)

My parents traveled to historical sites a lot while I was growing up; we went all over Europe and Asia. Sometimes I would go to old ancient ruins and would have similar experiences simply standing there, or would be drawn to touching old buildings or stones for this reason. I feel the weight of history and intention in my body like a sensation and weight passing through me like a breeze, or maybe like running water. It starts speaking to me, especially the more open I am.

Actually, I think a lot of people get this sort of feeling and sensation when it comes to old places or objects, don't they(?) But they don't think of that feeling as being “real” in the sense of possibly being a gateway to universal reality or experience, and from there you can get very distinctive, vivid, and incredibly specific information if you're open and you know how to read, and because you want to read.

For those of us where natural objects give us flashbacks; for when some combination of metaphorical and literal is inseparable. Sometimes you find yourself utterly sucked into the cycle of life.

Edited by modmyth
Apparently when interviewed by Stacey Schmeidel for the Spring 1999 issue of Amherst Magazine, David Foster Wallace said, “The truth is I don’t think I’ve ever found anything as purely ‘moving’ as the end of The Velveteen Rabbit when I first read it.”

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3 AM OBSESSIVENESS: This may or may not be the most coherent//

Well, it's 3 am and I should probably be sleeping. Except I'm not. I have unleashed a certain obsessive part of my personality. I admit, that the last little bit (like a week or so), I have been a terrible girlfriend due to inattentiveness (and it's when I'm like this I wonder if I should be dating anyone at all). I can be not the most pleasant person to deal with when someone or something gets between me and my work, with the tendency to make myself conspicuously absent.

And I just want to work, work, work at this. There is a part of me that does not understand what work-life balance when I get so involved in something it consumes me.

All I'm doing at the moment is eating, exercising, meditating, writing, drawing (/doing art shit), and counting the time in between, at times. The pendulum has swung again towards a sort of extreme asceticism for the purpose of getting certain things done. Just this demanding peak performance of my psyche and consciousness over and over for extended periods of time. I am hammering my mind and psyche into something which will make me process, synthesize and create exponentially with this information processing/ synthesizing thing. It's the biggest energy sink at the moment.

METAPROCESSES: I practice both scripting and glyphing daily to shape and command the so-called subconscious/preconscious mind (a fiction too, of sorts). There are things that are not yet quite recalled or created, but you need an in-the-field approach to provide feedback, like just get the process moving, plus probably at least one more extra perspective in order to observe this while it's happening, and also retrospectively.

Yesterday I read Sapiens (400-450 pages I think), reread part of Dhalgren (150 pages, testing the way my mind processes different types of texts + noting different approaches/ “lens” which do or don't work), two architectural books (to be fair, there are almost no words so processing it visually at a rapid pace works. I'm not going to lie, it's difficult and frustrating. The sporadic approach I used as a child and in my earlier teens isn't going to cut it; following my own sense of interest and curiosity which can be really fickle. I need thoroughness and a sort of informational omniscience. Structurally speaking, it does not work by design. It will never work for what I need to do. Some aspects of processing are being recreated from scratch as I take note of everything which appears flawed intuitively (so there is a sort of examining of metaprocess going on simultaneously as I'm processing/ reading which I am relying on here).

Everything is chaotic and breakneck at this speed. It's frustrating and painful. It tests my patience and ability to hold peak consciousness without a sort of narrowing of my lens of focus plus distractability. I have to find a way to stay calm and open despite this. My consciousness keeps shifting shape in response to stimuli, as if like water or air. If I become rigid or too fix, it no longer works as it should, as it once did when I was a child. Become information. Be the lens, the process, the writer, the soul of it all.

It's completely ridiculous. I make myself nauseous (literally) with my demands, but such is life. (Once I stop, I'm completely calm. No accumulated stress or psychic residue; so at least that is changed.)

Today, I did it again, but with different books. It didn't get any easier, but I did notice more issues. That's good. So the metaprocess part gets adjusted again with the scripting. So soon enough, I predict it will get exponentially easier. We'll see.

So tomorrow, note to self, organize my time a bit better and be less self-indulgent with my scheduling, the better I get at this, the less freedom there is in a way. In a comparable way, I must bind myself and push (at times, straight-up force myself without being so violent) to focus perfectly in specific ways for at least 1-2 hour intervals minimum. Also, be more emotionally present. It will get easier (and then, it will get harder. Such is life. I rescind my 'freedom' to choose otherwise).

***I guess I should meditate and get some sleep.
***I may be wired for this sort of intensity but I still find it very difficult.

Edited by modmyth
pushing myself towards the periphery of "actual peak capacity" + then some.

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CONFESSIONALS: PAST LIFE WEIRDNESS// “EGO” + On Practicing Openness as Principle

There is the most peculiar feeling of recursion of holding a text in my hands which is the product of thinking in a past life; and I am immediately struck by how similar my way of thinking and processing is, regardless of the time period, at the root of it. It's not that hard for me to identify myself, particularly the way I react relative to a certain time period and culture. It's inescapable, and at times crushing, for when I aggressively have no desire to hold onto the past. It's not like I'm running around trying to squeeze pegs into holes over here, although sometimes occasionally, I feel inclined to test it out a bit like that. Mostly no. It's that crushing sense or like being hit over the head with said book.

I know myself quite well.  (Do you know yourself that well? And do you want to?)

I could write books about it (but I would prefer not to).

The farther you go back in time, the more certain things I've done have had a massive scope far beyond the scope of that particular lifetime (as in, it sets the course for a whole cycle culturally of thousands of years), especially in the sense of creating knowledge, a future field of inquiry, or discipline directly. There is a reason for this. There is the most space for expansion and inquiry (what will we do next?) near the beginning of an era usually. The further we have gone in time towards the present over the course of the past thousands of years, the more we have been trapped in our own atomistic thinking within an everexpanding labyrinth of culture, information, and the individual variations of collective experience.

It's the weirdest feeling. Sometimes I feel very proud of what I have done, if you define pride as a sense of I have made good use of that time on Earth and it resulted in a sort of germination of knowledge and culture that has created the sort of space and questions necessary for other people to do worthwhile work. Sometimes I have felt pain or concern in the last 10 years, as in a sense of responsibility for the outcome of certain disciplines and fields of knowledge have gone over said time, even if I had ceased to be directly involved with that field at all for many lives. I still feel responsible for it in a way, as if it was a child, or something to that effect. (Again, I will draw attention to the fact that I do not really have any normal sense of time on any scale. Past lives = this life// there's no intrinsic sense of separation. I am a continuum). What I dislike most of all is this cramped feeling; what story am I supposed to tell other people about this? Maybe I can just say nothing at all?

I find myself wanting to talk about it in a public way, and challenge this other deep-rooted tendency; it's gauche to talk about what I've done in a past lives, “achievements” and whatnot. It's always: what does this have to with the present. How does this relate to the work you need to do right now? You have to deal with people thinking you're full of shit. But at the same time, openness is the way of the future, isn't it? Also, you have to deal with people thinking you're full of shit regardless, so really don't let that get in the way of doing anything that matters. If I am obliged to reflect on my own past and other people's experiences and to make sense of it openly, it's the same with past life experience, especially on a larger or total scale. It's not a point of obsession; I don't think about it constantly, it's just that when it comes up naturally in the way that happens when I am just living, reflecting, and perpetually generating understanding. Then I have this complex reaction. Where do I draw the line with what I share? And this decision is not based on my own preference, exactly; it's based on other people and where we are collectively as a culture and in our psychospiritual evolution. How much openness are we prepared for right now? (Openness is "unity consciousness" by definition.)

Ok. Reorient myself. Try again.

Maybe I should just say whatever I want unless there's a really good reason not to. Maybe I shouldn't waste time creating conflict with myself in this way (as this conflict will inevitably influence other people if I at all have influence). I should probably just stand with myself on my own side and ignore everything else at this point. After all, I am “destined” (so the soul writes) in this lifetime to do something at least as big or influential as anything that I've done in the very early years of human history, and will inevitably be able to match that exercising of scope and skill which is completely relative to where everyone else is collectively. There is no choice or option about that aspect. And there is no mystery about it either for me.

It's the same game, really.

How much am I obliged to talk or show about myself though? And why, for what reason? What higher purpose does it serve? There is always this same question that I had been asking myself in the past, although actually, I have not asked myself so much lately, because I don't feel like I have really been holding back in my writing at all here.

Maybe I should just talk about the past lives. Do I really have to keep this in the closet? It's always easier to talk about the nonfamous ones (aka. nonrecorded or nonmythic) because I don't have to deal with the pretense about pretense. (Aka. "ego" or accusations about ego or just generally being nutters). Although, if you're gonna call me nutters, can it be at least be about something I find funny? Can we make a game of it or something? Like if you find me very odd and that makes you uncomfortable, well, probably on some level I'm going to want to poke some fun at that and probably at you too.

Seriously though, why do I still have to play this game with myself? (Why am I internalizing projections of other people's opinions still, even though it doesn't quite stick like it used to?) Will I endanger my work being taken seriously now or in the future (this is the only thing that really matters in the long run). Why can't I just say who I am and what I've known myself to have done? And anyway, to what degree will my ability to do work that is of enough significant value of others (in both the present time period and in the future) offset the amount of outlandish shit I've said and inevitably will continue to say if I'm truly and totally committed to this premise of openness? These are questions that I still ask myself all the time.

Just keep walking.

I always have to keep testing people's boundaries, watching and waiting for people's feedback, and then adjust. The same damn game.

A TENDENCY: There is always this tendency and desire to be the first person to do this or that, which means that I look for untapped potential. I am a proto this-or-that. And when there is nothing to do, it's not a great feeling. There are few things I dislike more than being in civilization with nothing worth doing. I absorb the spirit of an era.

 

Edited by modmyth
'Modmyth, why do you think you're such hot shit?' A: Go be your best self and do your thing, for real. I don't have to much more time and energy to allocate towards this. Sigh.

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Wittgenstein and the "Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus"// This is just a rant about philosophy:

So I was once told that I didn't really understand this philosopher by someone I respected intellectually. Like, I just didn't get it. Once in a while, I will read it and re-read it to see if I missed anything, particularly with this text. Every time, I approach it with an (honestly) open mind hoping that I missed something and to "see the light", but it never happens. Like seriously, prove me wrong, I'd be happy to be wrong. Or at least help me see it from your perspective and not from mine. Because this is about hyperlogical clarity, isn't it? 

I am in this practice; if there is something I really dislike or think lacks redeeming value, I will try very very hard to see the value in it from pretty much any possible perspective. I will keep trying over and over again.

OBCURANTISM: In academia, it's like some kind of goddamned cult. And with some people, if you're not on board, you're some kind of pleb who just doesn't get it.

Well, every supposedly profound insight I have ever read from people about how they interpreted about him... I think to myself well yea, that's obvious. These insights into nature of language and the interpretation of reality, and stuff apparently people take for granted, is expressed in the most obscure and convoluted way possible (I mean, at the level of concept and ideas here, which yes is a "real" thing, which is real in the sense that you can work with it functionally completely outside of language, ok? Also, stop blaming Platonism and comparable thought systems for your lack of ability to either process "aconceptually" or communicate the "aconceptual". Stuff that is outside of language is not an invention of Platonism, haha. Also, it's an entirely feasible goal, not some kind of unicorn fantasy.) Reading this text is like reading "water is wet", "water is wet", over and over and over again, but in a conceptual sense he can barely write or express himself. Yes, language can suck. It is inherently creative and metaphorical in away. And you know what? The more you embrace those features, curiously, the more you can express yourself as clearly and directly as language allows concisely. Also, as a piece of absurdist writing (something which is intended to be self-collapsing at a conceptual level), this seriously sucks. It's hard to express yourself coherently with language when you keep trying to collapse it on itself conceptually in that way that he is.

Metaphors and stories work incredibly well for communicating and impressing meaning, which we have been doing time immemorial since there was spoken language. Spoken language = stories. All communication = narratives = stories. Symbols, signifiers, postmodernism. Blah blah blah... it's all be said before and much earlier, in a different cultural context with different languages, but coming to the same conclusion. Jesus just express things in the vernacular unless there is a very very good reason not too. Is this fun? Why do people take this shit so seriously?

Anyway, there is this well-known anecdote attributed to Huineng, as recorded in the Platform Sutra. This sentiment repeats itself in Chinese thought over and over again. I think collectively, we might have a much looser grip on language and more expansive and flexible view of it, like we have a very different experience of language period, probably at least partially due to the amount of time Buddhism has been circulating in Chinese thought. I read this stuff when I was a child. The point of it isn't that hard to understand, is it?

"The story goes as one of his colleague monks had read the scripture of Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra for years and still didn't get it.

Huìnéng askes her to read it to him and see if he can help explain. She laughs, you don't even read and how can you understand? Huìnéng replies, "Truth has nothing to do with language. Truth is like Moon in the sky and language is like the finger that points to the moon. A finger can point out where the moon is, but the finger is not the truth. You can see the moon without help of any fingers, can't you?"

Great, that's technically all you need to say.

giphy.gif

What is the best way to put this? Every time, I reread the "Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus", I have this thought. This is the most textbook autistic thing I have ever read. In my whole life. Like, it is by definition, with everything I have ever read about it. Legitimately I am wondering, was he on the spectrum? This is not meant to insult him as a person or the condition, but I do think this sort of work is super pointless intellectually and aesthetically. Yes, I understand that he's historically relevant and that he marks the split between the continental and analytical philosophy. That doesn't mean he's great to read now. But if reading him is what it takes to come to those sorts of conclusions. Well, have at it, I guess? I tried to relate, apparently, I cannot.

Wittgenstein's later works on language games, fine. I have no issues with them. At least he learned how to write and express himself better. I still don't think it's brilliant, but at least you can do something useful with it. If it was novel at the time, as in, it appeared first in that cultural vacuum. I get that. 

GENERAL ISSUE: Also, expressing yourself well actually comes from a level that is actually outside of language completely. Processing quickly or instantly (aka. "gnostically") comes from a level outside of language completely, like inspiration. It's not an invention of platonism. This isn't me being mystical. I am describing a process. FFS.

It is possible to observe this directly with full consciousness of it.

On Universal Judgment: Hey, I'll hit myself with this the hardest of all because I'm not afraid of being wrong, and also ideas are just ideas. A perspective is just a perspective. So I'm not bothered by asking myself, tongue-in-cheek:

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Edited by modmyth
resurrected meme

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THE LIMITS AND LIMITLESSNESS OF UNDERSTANDING:

Also, I explain myself in a complex and convoluted way via language at times. I am aware of the irony of complaining about someone else doing it, haha. I have done this the most in my journal METACOG, trying to map aconceptual space (aka. non-symbolic communication). I have been wondering before, during, and afterward if I have been wasting my time completely.

My current mode of thinking about it at the moment is this: understanding is given or transmitted first, or the space is cleared out and created for it, the seeds of understanding are sown through collective desire and the desire of specific individuals, and then it is germinated. All intentions follow their designated trajectory as it is projected in the moment of conceiving that intention (just because you're not aware of it, doesn't mean that it doesn't exist and can't be read). 'God' is the original intention. This world, everything we see, society, nature, is created from intentions running their course in a causal way. (Not really a revolutionary thought here.)

After that, then you are capable of having the experience of understanding consciously, but not before. The fabric or matrix of understanding (as a sort of groundwork) has to be created, willed for, or envisioned first. This is how it tends to work here on planet Earth, historically on the micro and macro level (as in, cultural movements, e.g. the European Enlightenment). I see no reason it will work any differently.

I made the shift towards this line of thinking: All understanding is direct transmission. (In every sense of this. And so now, communicating everything clearly and fully now is possible. I have to believe it is possible and make reality conform now, in a sense.)

Anyway, this is not a "mystical" perspective, in the sense that universal cause and effect applies. Being mystical in this way, as in obscuring things for its own sake, is stupid. So by mystical, I don't mean "transcendental appreciation" here. Just generally, don't make things harder than they have to be wherever you happen to be perceptually and work at your actual natural limits, wherever they also happen to be. There is more than enough to do that's worth doing without wasting your time with that shit.

Hilariously, someone messaged me on Fetlife saying that intellectually (also including perspectives about spirituality and sexuality) I am harder to grasp than anything he's ever read in university, in philosophy. I... that's not really compliment. I'm not proud of being difficult to understand at times. It's a barrier or obstacle to communication. (This is my populist side showing, I guess. I really would like everyone to get what I'm saying, even if it's not of personal value.)

Edited by modmyth

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MY CHINESE NAME + A CHILDHOOD MEMENTO:

So, being biracial, I have two last names. Which is pretty cool. When I was very young, I didn't think it was strange at all that I used one name in Hong Kong and in mainland China (as well as around people who primarily only spoke Chinese and in Chinese school) and another name most of the time otherwise. My Chinese friends also used their Chinese name when they went to traditional Chinese school on Saturdays, but they just had one last name. Also, my dad's last name is very German-sounding.

My Chinese name is 張 依 韻 (zhāng yī yùn, in Mandarin) (In Cantonese, it's zoeng1 ji1 wan5, which sounds roughly like "jerng e-won". Based on this, you might be able to guess what my English first name is, as my parents deliberately picked an English name that would sound about the same as my Chinese name). I have mentioned earlier in this blog that my mom is from the Hong Kong area, so her native tongue is Cantonese.

So in Chinese, your last name goes first. For emphasis. Because your family, as a collective, is more important than you are. .... "Zhāng" is a pretty common last name. Also, it is the same surname as a very famous warring states period general, Zhāng Fēi (張飛).

If you are around in China or anywhere where there is a significant Chinese population, especially if there are older people (e.g. in a Chinatown), you might see a guy with an epicly long beard in an ancestral shrine. It's probably Guan Yu, also a very famous warring states period general, who with Zhang Fei, served under a military warlord named Liu Bei. Out of all the three of them, Guan Yu gets enshrined the most. I have no idea why he was deified more than the other two. Occasionally, I have seen Zhang Fei as a statue or enshrined, but I have never seen Liu Bei ever just by himself, the subject of a shrine. I also have no idea why.

Guan Yu, Liu Bei, Zhang Fei, in that order:

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Liu Bei, Guan Yu, Zhang Fei: the physical characterizations are usually pretty consistent.

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Here is Guan Yu in a personal shrine (it could either be in a public place like a shop, restaurant, or studio. Or in someone's home). He often sports a red face, a long beard, and the Chinese version of halberd (I think). So back when I used to take martial arts as a teenager, my sifu told me that those weapons were for foot soldiers to chop off the legs of horses of mounted soldiers. I must have looked really upset or like I was going to cry, because he said something really unsentimental like: well, that's war.

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When I went to China when I was 7, my parents bought me a replica of the Flying Horse of Gansu, which which is an artifact from the Han Dynasty. I'm not sure why I was so obsessed with it, other than I liked horses, and this horse was like Chinese pegasus. I must have read the description for it or had been told about it by my parents, as occasionally they explained things here to me; I probably saw this in a museum and bought it in the gift shop there. So, I probably learned this horse sculpture was found in a tomb, and about how in that era, they were still burying small replicas of lifelike objects to bring with them to the afterlife, mostly in the form of servants, horses and animals, furniture, as well as jewelry and other personal belongings.

Dude must have wanted a flying horse in his afterlife. I can't blame him.

Anyway, I may have mentioned that as a child, I was very obsessed with history and I read a ton of books about it, and when my parents carted me and my brother to museums, I was the one who mostly read every single caption for the descriptions for all of the artifacts while my brother was bored to tears for spending 2-3 hours in a museum. Sometimes we would spend all day if there was a lot to see. I would get tired mentally after these excursions.

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I did actually play with it occasionally. But it was a bit awkward playing with a metal sculpture.

Also, I had a seal made with my Chinese name on it as a souvenir, which also had the flying horse on it. I got to pick the design and I was so very obsessed with the flying horse.  Sometimes I have looked at it as an adult thinking, what am I gonna do with this? I have actually considered using it on my own artworks.

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My parents owned a lot of interesting historical replicas like this, sculptures and art that they brought back from their travels, especially Asian art. Sometimes I would spend hours as a child just looking at all of these things and observing them very carefully and in meticulous detail because they were so interesting to study, and I actually did respect my parents' insistence on not playing with them and was very careful with whatever I touched.

 

Edited by modmyth
For reference, I did have normal toys!

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So awesome!
 

It’s funny, i feel I have a natural alien ? lingo I speak in that sounds Chinese. It just comes right out if I try to speak jibberish. For all I know it is, but would be interesting to hear someone’s thoughts on it xD

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@DrewNows  There is an official name for that, it's called "glossolalia". Some singers sing just using that, their own made-up language, and often it does sound like bits and pieces of other languages. As for whether your language actually sounds like Chinese, I would have to hear it in order to tell you. :D

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2 hours ago, modmyth said:

@DrewNows  There is an official name for that, it's called "glossolalia". Some singers sing just using that, their own made-up language, and often it does sound like bits and pieces of other languages. As for whether your language actually sounds like Chinese, I would have to hear it in order to tell you. :D

"glossolalia!" How bout that xD

brb going to tell a little birdie to pass on my glossolalia, be on the look out! 
here’s the spunky little guy

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I’ve never been berated so much in my life, I kid you not (has a real ‘suck it’ attitude) 

Edited by DrewNows

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7 hours ago, modmyth said:

@DrewNows  Cute! What kind of bird is that?  Any guesses?

No idea. It just so happened to be a bird very moved by my presence. Continuously chirping and flying around me, and all I was doing was checking out these cool flowers next to the tree (maybe there was a nest) The funny thing was the bird would only come about 6 ft away and fly around as if there was an invisible ball-like force field surrounding me 

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Edited by DrewNows

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@DrewNows Were those pictures taken close to where you live? It looks very green. Wild birds and animals are usually hyper spatially conscious like that, unless they're crows (DGAF) or ones that are used to getting something from humans. I live near a park where we have very chubby squirrels which will practically run right up to your feet because they're used to getting fed constantly.

It's usually noisy with birds here in the spring, starting at 4 am in the morning. I think this is main reason I'm sleeping with earplugs at this point, haha. Are they everywhere or are they just directly outside my window all of time?

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6 minutes ago, modmyth said:

Are they everywhere or are they just directly outside my window all of time?

xD
I do live in a green city with parks and plenty of life. I can really hear it in the moment, also I tend to really appreciate it at night if I’m walking around. The city park is where I encountered this pair of birds, the one in the pic gave me trouble. Wanted to capture him/her in mid flight, just too fast  

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@DrewNows Me too, Metro Vancouver is very green. I used to live in a city where the tagline was, "The City of Parks".

It seems like they never take a break, haha. Also, it wasn't until I was an adult that I discovered some of those bird sounds were actually angry/ territorial squirrels, mainly the Douglas squirrel, for reference here in a couple of these videos:

Mostly I just think everything is a bird. They are sooo cute. Once, I was taking a walk with my bf in a park, and one bounced off his leg. Maybe it's because we had no food for him; I honestly don't know! Super sassy though.

Edited by modmyth

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SORRY WITTGENSTEIN: Maybe I have gone through at least 3 academic books in the past week that have mentioned you, and I asked myself, was it really necessary to mention you here in this particular analysis of the Achaemenid empire or the interpretation of the Buddhist Pali canon? Or is just more trendy academic namedropping?

You know with anything, what is the actual point of in this particular work and in the widest sense?

You do make some important observations, even if I think they should be obvious to everyone; clearly it isn't. It's cool if you're odd and hard to understand and apparently people think you're intimidating and mysterious, haha. (I read that he intimidated Bertrand Russell and some other notables.) So people decided to start a cult of you. You didn't ask to start the cult of yourself, as far as I know. I don't actually dislike you. (I just don't get the big deal and you lack writing flair, but it seems like you were aware of that, that communication was difficult for you in the normal sense of the word.)

INFINITE SOUND PERCEPTION// THE FUTURE SOUND OF MUSIC: Last summer, while I locked myself inside the proverbial infinity chamber, I heard music in a completely different way that I still really have no idea how to explain at all. Only to say that I heard a degree of distinction and structure that I wasn't even aware that was possible. Suddenly I became aware of a level of patterning, or multiple levels of patterning simultaneously all at once that I am pretty sure extends significantly beyond the normal ability to perceive order and meaning in sound...

Intuition dictates that the future of sound is here.

Here, I experienced sound and music as an entire world. I find myself stuck with wordiness: I want to call this sort of multilayered, multihierarchial sound perception: “recursive nomenclature”, which is what simply comes to mind. Where I might normally notice a few, or maybe 5-10 distinctions at most, suddenly I can perceive what might be hundreds or thousands of distinctions simultaneously. It is a rawer, more absolute perception. I have the intuition that there are no names for some of this stuff yet, no language that exists to explain it. Some of it is already perceived by those that work with sound professional and have a sharp ear, and I suspect some of it is off the range because it is atomistic in its detail and level of distinction. It is higher sound perception relating and overlapping highly with the psychic senses.

It is like being able to walk into a crowded space, say a food court in the mall (using this because I have actually had this distinction) and giving relatively EQUAL valuation to each individual voice, so you get the sense of hearing each individual voice simultaneously, but also as a collective (instant headaches at the time). It's not that you can exactly understand what each individual voice is saying, but you can hear the character and sound of their voice and also get intuitive impressions about singular voices (as if you had never heard human language or speaking before, so it doesn't intrinsically mean anything) as a distinct phenomenon. In a state of openness, this has happened to me occasionally, but not the degree described above.

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It is in a way, it is also comparable to my way of processing reality visually which happens normally all the time (“particle vision”, where visually, reality is experienced in a visually unified way, intensely vivid, unsolid, as an uncountable number of light particles, and with other layers of (what's considered nonphysical reality) is overlayed ontop. (you could just as easier say that it's the other way round though, visible reality is constantly and totally projecting out of an infintessmally tiny singularity)).

I could massively refine or reattune my hearing by reorientating back towards this point, I suppose it's inevitable that I will. Then this gets implanted into the collective consciousness. At this point, it's a free for all, if it comes to you and you can make sense of it, you are free to do something amazing and mindboggling with it. Even a small fraction of this will take you places relative to your current experience and knowledge base. I thought originally I was supposed to share it with particular people (or a particular person), but I'm not feeling very precious about it anymore. There may be a need to do a bit more than simply embedding or channeling that consciousness, but we'll see a guess. Put that one on the list.

I have thought at times that I would probably make a much more skilled writer of music than a visual artist, but here I am with the visual arts, and also a million other things to do. I lack experience in writing music, although I have had some moments in childhood which I have written about here. I have sometimes thought of starting again, for fun. But you know, time. Priorities at the moment.

Edited by modmyth

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