Aphorisms, Insights and Other Comic Resources for Modern Intellectuals
Sofa Indents: We leave no footprints in the T.V. world. We were never there.
Deluded Heroics: T.V. offers entrance to a world where we are the only people who are not actors and yet we cannot act.
Irrelevant by Remote: To idly surf by remote control is to confess that we have no clue what we want to be when we grow up. It is the medium preferred not so much by the lazy as by the comfortably irrelevant. Would a stranger please tell me who I am?
Gravitational Perspectives: You cannot know lots of stuff about celebrities, have them know nothing about you, and retain your own relevance. If you are in any way relevant, you are a satellite in orbit, never a star.
The Golden Age: In the ancient world the Golden Age was behind people but retrievable. Moderns imagine the Golden Age as ahead of them, a future that will arrive one day. In the “postmodern” world, the Golden Age is always elsewhere, at a distance, some place other than this one.[i]
How to Shoot Your Own Feet: The more information that people access that they either do not or cannot act upon, the more impotent they will be. Clearest case: college students who don’t vote and yet who watch world news while they ought to be doing their homework.
Defining Pornography: Some pornographic magazines have pictures of faceless, near bodiless, sex organs. Such porn is not hard to define: Despite the world’s rich diversity, its complexity of relations, pornographic images are overly reductive, a forced synecdoche.[ii]
One and Only One: Can any one photograph raise a highly specific and context-dependent question? If so, then I’d like to see a photograph convey that question.[iii]
The “I’m not Alone” Parade: Cell phones allow people to persuade others (and themselves) that they don’t feel alone. Seen publicly on the phone, we dance around and gesticulate the fact that we are “with someone.”[iv]
Not You, Not Here: Cell phones are a ritual medium for the displaced happily-ever-after. There is, quite evidently, more reality out there than there is right here, with you.
Look Purposefully Ahead: Cell phones have replaced wristwatches as strategies for declining interpersonal encounters. Simply have your cell phone out and ready. Start to walk forward, pull out your phone and pretend to take a call, preferably the call you’ve been waiting for. Keep walking.
The Question Advertisers Want Us to Keep Asking: Am I who I think I am?
Capitalist Anonymity: The more that people do not know who they are, the more time, energy, and money they spend on performing themselves.
Interpersonal Dialectics: If you cannot be a different person with different people, then all of those people will be the same person. What makes people who they are is who you are when you’re with them.[v]
Being Larger than Yourself: No one says, “I don’t like what you say, eat, wear, buy or own, don’t like your family, friends, co-workers or neighbors, don’t like your past, your beliefs, or even your aspirations, but I really like you!” Even children on the playground need to share in favorite colors and ice-cream flavors.
Memories of Umbilical Cords: Navel gazing is highly underestimated. We should celebrate meditations on the incontrovertible proof of our sociality. Look down. You bear the mark; you are caught in the web where beings emerge out from others of their kind.
The 12:00 Unmasking: Imagine the release of energy and social impact if people completely gave up all belief in an afterlife and simultaneously realized our common plight.[vi]
Many Ages: Because everyone ages, you can experience others’ experience of you as younger, older, or about the same age. As partly other people, we are never just one age.
Dialogue: If the bulk of everyday conversation is disguised persuasion or simply self-confirmation, then genuine dialogue is when two people risk not knowing who they’ll be at the end of their encounter.
Pecuniary Respect: As if on parade with a famous and well-respected celebrity, many people strut about when they are out on the town with Money.[vii]
Enviable Justice: Often the cry for justice is merely the howl of a green-eyed pain. If it were pruned of all envy, what would justice look like?[viii]
Love and Freedom: Imagine a love potion where anyone who drinks it falls forever in love with the next person they see. Who would use such a concoction? Would love be love if it could not be withdrawn?[ix]
What Evidence Do You Want?: Without a sense of freedom, you could never know love. That also means: if you’ve ever felt love, you can be certain that you experience free will.
Small Town Mentalities: A new neighbor was insulted when I tried to make him feel welcome. He retorted: “I grew up around here; lived just up the road my whole life.” The subtext was clear: “I’m not one of those people, you know, ‘strangers.’”
Gatherings: What must the nature of humanity be if, despite the fact that we had ‘forgotten all about it,’ we can unexpectedly feel remorse over something we did long ago?
The Taste of Soul Groves: Humans are the only kind of tree that can weep in the anguish of having failed to ripen its fruit. We are the only fruit that, ripe or not, must taste what it has become.[x]
Fall from Grace: Other animals are wholly spared the possibility of not liking themselves. To be human is to suffer from the possibilities of self-despisal.
The Root of Plastic Surgery: In class Lee Thayer once said that the mirror pulled God out of the center of the universe and put humans into it. Today, many people wake up and worship themselves at the morning altar.
How to Have No Friends: A friend is someone who likes you more than you like yourself. This means that some people have no friends not because nobody likes them but because they like themselves more than anyone else possibly could.
Not Having an Alibi: The most important words that you need to hear, only you can say. Too many things are left unsaid by those who forget that they themselves need to say them.[xi]
Having to Live with Yourself: Language is an otherization that leaves each speaker utterly alone and yet simultaneously makes any aloneness utterly impossible.
The Community of the Silently Speaking Self: Solitude is refuge for those who contain multitudes.[xii]
The Hypocrisy of Hope: We commonly think of people as either genuine or not. We thus forget the truth of moral history. We are the animal who can be a hypocrite, that is, the animal who can aspire.[xiii]
Time and Memory
Trust Your Becoming: The question is not can we relearn what we know we forgot but can we discover what we never knew we know? Can we become who we never knew we are?
Final Causes: As what we’re moving toward, the past is actually ahead of us, meaning that what we call the future is just as much a species of the past. It is the “certain but indeterminate past, the past that will-have-been.”[xiv]
Useless Recycling: Contemporary psychology has infected people with personal pasts in unprecedented ways. We learn from Nietzsche that most people today do not need any more self-understanding; they need to learn the arts of forgetting.
Time for Distinctions: Memory never feels much like thought until you can’t remember something. But the thought that we can’t remember we forgot is not even a thought temporarily forgotten. Who could say what it is?
Memory is Resistance: Is it possible to have a theory of rhetoric that does not boil down to persuasion? Who, exactly, would be able to know if persuasion had happened?
Remembering Forgotten Preoccupations: How many gray moods dawn by suddenly finding ourselves unable to remember some knot of concern that we suspect we left partly untied?
From the Other Shore: I wake up in the morning and start singing a song to myself, then, I think, “I hate that song; why is it stuck in my head?” The next thought to follow: “Well, someone must like it.”[xv]
A Call for Thought: Martin Heidegger has a book titled, What is Called Thinking? His title points not only to what we call “thinking,” but also to what could be called “called thinking,” that thinking which is done when what is to be thought about “calls” the thought.[xvi]
Distractions and Impositions: Sitting down to write, I’ve now twice checked the clock. Anticipating the later arrival of some dinner guests, I try to hurry up but it is here, precisely, that I should stop, for the guests rather than the substance of the writing are now calling the thought.
Kinds of Vegetables: You start the car, put it in drive, and suddenly realize, as if waking from a spell, that you just arrived and parked the car. So preoccupied by some thought or concern, you now don’t remember the driving. But how about this one: you are doing some handiwork, washing dishes or some other absorbing activity, when all the while you’ve been talking to yourself without fully realizing it.[xvii]
What Breathes Who?: Right now take a moment and try to stop thinking. Isn’t the first impulse to hold your breath? Speech–especially that inner speech we call ‘thought’–seems as semi-autonomous as breathing.[xviii]
Culture As Auto-Pilot: Without direct effort or conscious guidance, self-talk moves by its momentum, eddies swirling wherever they may: a continuing current of culture and background, this is thought without conscious direction.[xix]
Where to Attend: Initially vexed by the difficulty of ceasing inner dialogue, I prematurely concluded that it was impossible. But then I realized that one way to stop talking to oneself is to actually listen to other people.
Rhythms of Shrouded Self-Awareness: Could it be that people like to surround themselves with music, not to drown thought out, but so that they may think thoughts without having to think about the fact of thinking them?
For the Beautiful, Talented, Brilliant or Well Dressed: The works of Erving Goffman advise against openly claiming for yourself attributes that others would willingly grant. You only need to state what can’t be taken for granted.[xx]
Home of the Unthought Thought: Without questions you can’t recall all that you know. For example, what color are the walls in your kitchen? How, if not by words, would you have gained conscious access to that piece of knowledge? But you can believe you know something yet be unable to remember it when asked. So, how do you know what you know if you aren’t always knowing it?[xxi]
Who Knows?: Where is a thought before you think it? Which one?
Language as Order: Mental life is more than the occurrence of inner talk; we can find cognition, computation, inner images, sensations, and feelings. Still, if not by words, how could we identify, catalog, and maintain the boundaries between and among different aspects of mental life?[xxii]
Thought’s Registrar: If we admit the occurrence of some kinds of thought that are independent of language, we must quickly add that the thought that cannot be talked about is the thought that no one ever can remember. [xxiii]
No Thinker Outside of Thought: Thinkers do not think thought so much as thinking thinks thoughts of thinkers thinking thought.[xxiv]
Re-cognizing Non-sense: A mind is never solely one’s own. If you can make sense of what no other person can understand, you’d better watch out: yours might be broken. For example, try to say something that is perfectly intelligible to you but utterly unintelligible to every other person. Fortunately, “Eggplant lenses shoe participle without,” doesn’t make sense to me either.
Missing the Obvious: Because native tongues are learned from others, we thoughtlessly can conclude that language is not natural. Truth is, we are naturally social.[xxv]
Words Don’t Die: The you who can be thought about when you think about you, Alan Watts tells us, is the you who need not fear death; it is that you who never was born.[xxvi]
Speech & Language
Nameability rather than any Named: Language is thoroughly misunderstood when it is cast as discontinuous, as in: “I ran for a while, ate dinner and then I spoke with some friends, and finally, I went to bed.” A horizon that is present all along, language is the continued condition of trying to tell what is going on.[xxvii]
No Pity in Stupidity: When we learn a new word we often notice it used around us. This also means that we never hear all of the different words that we don’t know; all unknown words can seem the same, and so we easily pretend they are but a few.
Ed Lorenz’s “Deterministic Non-Periodic Flow”: Leonard Bloomfield suggests that no two individuals have the exact same lexicon nor use language in precisely the same way. Each and every person speaks ‘the language’ uniquely.[xxviii]
Sustainability: The great advantages of everyday speech are its economy of production, ease of use, and zero cost for post-production clean-up. At low low expenditure of resources, speech can be produced and made relevant for a one-time occurrence.[xxix]
Speaking of Possibilities: What could be more precarious than an animal that has learned to talk. Such strange and fanciful beings come mostly to concern themselves with what is not the case.[xxx]
What Was That?: Creativity is often the mishearing, that is, a mess earing or an I-play that can be eared.
Ugly Clarity: We imagine that communication would be improved if we could more clearly transmit ideas. We forget that we are living breathing organisms, creatures capable of aesthetic in-building through the slow and partly staggering grope toward meaning; conversational structure takes its aesthetic appeal not by any information transferred, but through the moment by moment forms of disambiguation.[xxxi]
Unsaid Truth Beside Itself: The truthfulness of an unsolicited statement is never a warrant for its assertion. No one is comforted by a departing guest who suddenly and quite truthfully announces, “Just to let you know, I didn’t steal anything.”
Always a Little Late: Words are often most apt for worlds that no longer exist. Language speakers are antique dealers.
Utterance as Revelatory Echo: Photos, like written texts or things already said, are expressions. Speaking, on the other hand, is an expressing where we commonly remain unable to examine our utterances until others already have them.[xxxii]
Singing an Advance: Speech is never merely for the things surrounding us. We spend the bulk of the time in a kind of echolocation; with words we navigate to distant and unseen futures.
Where and When: A dog never barks about the stranger who didn’t stop by yesterday.
Mirrors and Windows: Speech is no mere mirror of reality: it opens the window through which we may escape.
Mimesis (Or Repeat After Me): A toddler points to an object and says, “What is that?” The parent says, “It’s a fire hydrant.” The child’s question used the words “what,” “is,” and “that” despite the fact that none of these were learned as names for tangible things.[xxxiii]
Experiencing Our Interpretations: It makes sense to say that we interpret our experiences, but what we experience is always already an interpretation.[xxxiv]
Interpreting Interpretations: Because we interpret messages, we easily forget that all messages already are interpretations.
Ode to Epictetus: There is one and only one freedom: the freedom to interpret.
Freedom Actualized: I cannot make any interpretation that I desire; I can make only those interpretations that I actually make.
Forgotten Beginning: If at birth we spoke rather than bawled, we in all likelihood would talk often about the trauma.[xxxv]
On Sound Living: When asked which sense she would choose if she could have her sight or hearing back, Helen Keller chose hearing. Her reasoning? Sound is inherently alive and vibrant while vision, utterly silent, often epitomizes a distant and dream-like detachment from the world. The eye, unlike the ear, opens to the lifeless, the motionless, and the dead.[xxxvi]
Reading Drifts: Several pages into an interesting book, we can suddenly realize that we have drifted off from the reading. Now, why do we always seem to catch ourselves only after slipping off the reading?[xxxvii]
Ruminate: To read is to be unable to break down and absorb all we have swallowed. Later, after an event or perhaps talking with a friend, we cough up and give another go at what was previously indigestible.
Inspiration: Much writing writes itself yet provides itself with an alibi. It makes us the laborer, supervisor, and curious onlooker.
How a Writer Becomes a Language: Authors sometimes coin new words or bring new meaning to old ones. Their writings eventually become a language that others can learn to speak. With time and practice, you too could speak Thorstein Veblen, Marshall McLuhan, or perhaps Kenneth Burke.
Who Needs Not Remember?: Too many students have failed to learn that it is who we become by way of study, not merely what we remember afterward.
The Difference Between Books and Doorstops: At first pass, a book can seem to be little more than a physical object present in a room. From that posture, it’s easy to pretend that books and minds are easily separated. But, the “inside” of a book is more like the drunken stupor that can be found in a bottle of alcohol. As books make their way inside us, we fall under their influence.[xxxviii]
Questionable English Majors: I have heard some young would-be writers say, “Ya know, it’s funny. I hate to read but I love writing.” Have they ever thought who would want to read their stuff? Maybe they’re aspiring to be bloggers.
Old Saws with New Teeth: If a tree falls in a forest but nobody is there to hear it, does it make a sound?
–I don’t know, did that one?
–The question isn’t, “does it make a sound?,” but rather, “what sound does it make?”
–If a rainbow is in the sky but nobody is there to see it, is there a rainbow in the sky? [xxxix]
–If tree falls in a forest but no one is there, was there both the forest “and” the tree?
–If a tree falls in a forest, but you don’t believe in the natural occurrence of hypotheticals…?
Toe-Holds and Reductions: If we should be reluctant to essentialize, we should be just as reluctant to deny the essential.[xl]
Locating the Substance of Adjectives: Philosophers say that adjectives are used to predicate substances. This means that we can specify a quality of something by using an adjective. For example, “That was a hairy bear,” or “the cup is heavy.” How odd that the supposed quality, a predicate, is a comparison. To what does an adjective refer?
Who is Figure and Who is Background?: For Nietzsche the basic issue is how humans are able to equate the unequal. For Bateson the issue is the human ability to recognize differences. Which comes first, difference or sameness?
Non-Sense is No Constraint: Which option makes less sense: the universe arose out of nothing or it always was? Neither makes much sense and yet this does not preclude either option. Being is not limited by our ability to make sense.
A Pedantic Philosophical Argument: Which is more purple, purplish blue or bluish purple? Imagine two fools debating the question solely upon semantics. That answer is obvious: it is the sound of one hand clapping, a full bowl of snow, and three pounds of flax.[xli]
The Bane of Modernity: In the ancient world many people believed in the gods but not in a personal afterlife. Today the Western world is populated with countless people who believe in some kind of personal experience post-mortem but do not believe in the divine.
The Twofold Attitude: The proper attitude toward our parents is the same as to the Gods. We should thank them and forgive them in the same gesture.[xlii]
Look both Ways: Prayers should be offered as if others could hear and conversations with others should be had as if the Gods were listening.
Grow Up: The resentment toward life that many people feel comes from the fact that they never asked for all of the suffering and injustice in life and then they have to die in the end regardless. Still, what is more wretched than an animal unable to forgive life for its many imperfections?
The Lazy God: Maybe in the proverbial beginning, God was basically lazy and tried to get someone else to carry the burden of dealing with the created cosmos, and so, births and deaths and the whole lot of it are an old trickster’s way of having “others” perennially bear the weight of keeping the show on the road.
Life Strategies: Get a group together and ask each person to write in good detail what they would do if they knew for certain that they had only 1 month left to live. Collect the responses. Now, repeat the exercise but this time on the condition that in one month, the world itself would cease to be. Why are the two sets of responses so different?[xliii]
Gratitude Requires Forgiveness: Imagine there is no afterlife, just this world with all of its suffering and injustice. In light of this fact how many people would be able to forgive God?
No Egress: Christian doctrine prohibiting suicide partly makes people resent the fact of living. Isn’t that a central part of the trouble with being born? None of us asked for it.
You Must Be Kidding!: So much of Christianity today is pure individualism. It is hard to think of anything more presumptuous and self-aggrandizing than a cemetery plot.
Properties of the Soul: A self is a substance defined by property: Animals do not long for the afterlife because they have never known ownership.
Pretending We Haven’t Changed: Christmas is the grand capitalist guilt-expiation and ceremony of atonement. After spending the year hoarding and taking for ourselves, we spend a couple of days as primitives lived for centuries: givers.[xliv]
On Becoming a Person: Jesus is the perfect symbol of transcending both body and culture. Erich Kahler tells us that the life journey of the historically existing individual was destined to take on a spiritual significance. “My god, My god, why have you forsaken me?”[xlv]
Well Then There is No Hope: When asked if he was basically optimistic or pessimistic, devout Catholic Marshall McLuhan responded by saying, “I have never been an optimist or a pessimist. Apocalypse is our only hope.”[xlvi]
Death and Dying
Look Them in the Eyes: When you are dead you will never see your friends and family again. Always remember this when you talk with them.[xlvii]
Knowing Someone Personally: We say that things can be understood only by assuming many different perspectives. Remember this when a loved-one dies; be sure to consider the reaction of all the people who never knew the deceased.
Wake Up: Death is not simply a future event that will one day come to pass, as if our only possible relation to it is anticipation. Death is right here right now, life’s picture frame. Not knowing that you are going to die would be like being in a dream but remaining unable to realize that you’re dreaming. If you couldn’t see the borders around it, life wouldn’t be nearly as real. All living things die, but awareness of death is the pre-condition for life’s meaningfulness.[xlviii]
Kiarostami’s Fruit: Three kinds of people refrain from suicide: those who are too cowardly, those who are too obedient, and those who find the little joys of life to be enough.
You’re Not that Important: When people are utterly unable to forgive themselves for being unable to meet life’s responsibilities, they become sadists who take heroic meaning through self-inflicted punishment. How many suicides are but sadomasochism perfected?
Never Enough Time for Some: Some people so misunderstand time that they actually think it would be desirable to live forever.
Nietzsche on Heavenly Observations: Gods were invented so that human actions and deeds, down to the finest detail, could take on cosmic significance. When divinities are imagined for whom suffering matters, even the lonely whimpers of the deserted and dying take on a spiritual light.
What’s on the Menu?: If we must be food for worms, then let us hope to taste best to the bookworms.
How is Distance Possible?: I am not the world, but I am not not it either. I am of it, indigenous to it and my body has always already made room for itself. Even with all of this, the world is at a distance.[xlix]
Everyone’s Face But My Own: We don’t see our own heads for a reason; a face is a ‘room-making absence.’ Without our own headlessness, other people wouldn’t have a face.[l]
The Whole of Reality: Want to talk about the real world? It can’t just be nature untrammeled by humanity, for the real world already includes humans. If, as Alan Watts suggests, “Just as a tree flowers, so the earth peoples,” then we must add: people world.
Truth by Perspective: Perspective is not the obstacle to truth; it constitutes truth as a possibility. Only where there is perspective can truth be found.[li]
Allies at Great Lengths: Distance is the friend of Desire.
You Were There!: We think back over our lives and say, “When I chose to do X, I just as well could have chosen to do Y or Z.” Could there be a clearer case of pretending that we weren’t there? It is only your imagination that makes it possible for you to think you could have not been. Make no mistake, the only world that you could have not been in is the fictional one.[lii]
What a Waste of Understanding: It is best to avoid people who need to understand every one of their problems. As Thayer suggests, it’s often easier to solve a problem than it is to figure out what it is.
Worry About it After You’ve Started: So many people want to fix their lives but don’t know where to start, so they don’t. [liii]
Ideas Don’t Pick Potatoes: Intelligence is not how many things you can think about, nor the complexity of the things you can think about. It is a measure of how much good you can do for yourself and others without having to think about it. Some students will write that down so that they can later think about it while others, without a second thought, leave the room as vegetarians.
Bass-ack-Words: When things in life start to slide downward don’t try to understand how this happened. Simply set things straight, now.
Therapeutic Incantations: Magic lore holds that one cannot dispel demons without knowing their proper names. As William Gass suggests, the struggle to articulate our thoughts is the only way of being truly possessed by them. But don’t forget Burke’s insight that we can dispel most of our demons by comic misnomer.[liv]
Our Dreams and Longings: The problem is not that many people want something for nothing. It is that most people, thinking that nothing is something, don’t know what is worth wanting.[lv]
The Two Kinds of Error: We can say that something is different than something else when in fact it is not. But we also can say that something is no different than something else when in fact it is. How many problems come from ambiguities between these two kinds of error? How many thoughts owe their existence to these two errors?[lvi]
Being More Than You Achieve: The ancient Stoics openly scorned personal ambition. Today we see how social mobility–its ups and downs–is the greatest source of stress in most people’s lives.[lvii]
A Primer for Stoicism: Not everything that happens is good but it is always good to begin by accepting what already happened.[lviii]
The Wherein of Decisions: Many decisions are made only in reference to our habits. Some people can decide to have a drink while others must decide to not have one.
Recipe for Power: Access only that information that you can and do act upon. [lix]
Wandering Around: If you don’t know who you are nor what you want to be when you grow up, you are dangerous, both to yourself and to others.
All Implementation: The great enemy of decision-making is the illusion of it.
Contemporary Dostoevsky Agonizer: Unable to talk their parents out of sending them off, some college students have their revenge by dragging their feet, doing just enough to barely graduate, and then, as they move back home, jobless, they can have the last laugh: “I told you ‘it’ wouldn’t work.”
[i]Cf. Georg Simmel’s The Philosophy of Money.
[ii]Cf. Kenneth Burke’s “Four Master Tropes” at the end of A Grammar of Motives.
[iii]Cf. Walter Ong on the differences between the senses, also cf. Jonas and Straus.
[iv]Cf. Erving Goffman’s discussion of “Gloss” in Frame Analysis.
[v]From class notes in Thayer’s course Communication and Human Condition
[vi]Cf. Jean-Paul Sartre’s Being and Nothingness, and my Selfhood and Authenticity.
[vii]Cf. Georg Simmel’s The Philosophy of Money.
[viii]Cf. Friedrich Nietzsche’s Beyond Good and Evil.
[ix]Cf. Julian Barnes’s “Parenthesis” from his A History of the World in 101/2 Chapters.
[x]Cf. Walter Ong’s work on Gerard Manley Hopkins; also The Wisdom of the Sands by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
[xi]Cf. Mikhail Bakhtin’s Toward a Philosophy of the Act, and Michel Foucault later work, “About the Beginning of the Hermeneutics of the Self.”
[xii]Cf. William Gass’s Habitations of the Word.
[xiii]Cf. Friedrich Nietzsche’s Genealogy of Morals, also Kenneth Burke’s various writings on the “comic corrective.”
[xiv]Cf. Martin Heidegger, The Concept of Time.
[xv]Cf. Octavio Paz, The Bow and Lyre.
[xvi]Cf. Martin Heidegger’s book, What is Called Thinking?, also see, Eugen Herrigel’s Zen and the Art of Archery.
[xvii]Cf. Michael Polanyi’s The Tacit Dimension, and the phenomenological tradition’s distinction between thetic and pre-thetic intentionalities.
[xviii]Cf. Alan Watts’s The Way of Zen.
[xix]Cf. Jean-Paul Sartre’s Critique of Dialectical Reason.
[xx]Cf. Erving Goffman’s “On-Face Work” from his book Interaction Ritual.
[xxi]Cf. Lee Thayer’s essays, “How Does Information Inform” and “Deconstructing Information,” from Pieces.
[xxii]Cf. Ludwig Wittgenstein’s Blue and Brown Books.
[xxiii]Cf. William Gass Habitations of the Word, and Richard Mitchell’s Less Than Words Can Say. Both maintain we don’t have memories from infancy because we had not yet the language.
[xxiv]Cf. Jiddu Krishnamurti in Freedom From the Known.
[xxv]Cf. my Selfhood and Authenticity.
[xxvi]Cf. Alan Watts, particularly his poem “Om: Creative Mediations” from the book titled OM.
[xxvii]Cf. Hubert Dreyfus, Being-in-the-world.
[xxviii]Cf. Edward Lorenz’s work in The Essence of Chaos, and consider the work on linguistic variety by Leonard Bloomfield, in Language.
[xxix]From personal conversation with Frank E. X. Dance.
[xxx]Cf. George Steiner, After Babel.
[xxxi]Cf. John Dewey’s Art as Experience and Kenneth Burke’s Psychology and Form.
[xxxii]Cf. David Bohm’s On Dialogue.
[xxxiii]Cf. Walker Percy’s “Delta Factor,” in The Message in the Bottle.
[xxxiv]Class notes from Thayer’s course Communication The Human Condition.
[xxxv]Cf. Otto Rank’s The Trauma of Birth.
[xxxvi]Cf. Walter Ong’s The Presence of the Word and his Orality and Literacy.
[xxxvii]Cf. Jean-Paul Sartre’s Transcendence of the Ego and Aron Gurwitsch Studies in Phenomenology and Psychology.
[xxxviii]Cf. Richard Rorty’s essay in the Umberto Eco collection Interpretation and Overinterpretation, & Heidegger’s account of “in-being,” The History of the Concept of Time.
[xxxix]Cf. Alan Watts’s “The World is Your Body,” from The Book.
[xl]Cf. Diana Fuss’s Essentially Speaking.
[xli]Cf. Robert Sohl’s Games Zen Masters Play.
[xlii]Cf. David K. Reynolds The Handbook for Constructive Living.
[xliii]Cf. Zygmut Bauman’s Mortality, Immortality and Other Life-Strategies.
[xliv]Cf. Hugh D. Duncan on Christmas and guilt expiation, Commmuncation and Social Order.
[xlv]Cf. Erich Kahler’s Man the Measure.
[xlvi]Cf. Marshall McLuhan’s The Medium and the Light.
[xlvii]Cf. Martha Nussbaum’s The Therapy of Desire.
[xlviii]Cf. Gregory Bateson’s, “A Theory of Play and Fantasy,” from Steps to an Ecology of Mind.
[xlix]Cf. Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s The Visible and Invisible.
[l]Cf. Douglas E. Harding’s “On Having No Head,” and also Drew Leder’s The Absent Body.
[li]Cf. Mikhail Bakhtin’s Toward a Philosophy of the Act, and Soren Kierkegaard’s Concluding Unscientific Postscripts to Philosophical Fragments.
[lii]Cf. Mikhail Bakhtin’s Toward a Philosophy of the Act.
[liii]Class notes from Thayer’s course “Language, Thought and Communication.”
[liv]Cf. William Gass’s Habitations of the Word and Kenneth Burke’s Counter-Statement.
[lv]Class notes from Thayer’s course “Knowledge and Decision-Systems”
[lvi]Cf. William K. Rawlins’s The Compass of Friendship.
[lvii]Cf. Seneca’s Epistles, & The Enchridion of Epictetus.
[lviii]Cf. The Discourse of Epictetus.
[lix]Cf. Lee Thayer’s Pieces