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culture

Ebb and Flow

A favourite pastime of mine is sitting in cafes, reading relatively complex academic books and pondering deep thoughts. I consider the noise and distraction of my environment as resistance training, as an incentive to concentrate mental focus upon the hidden layers of experience that dwell so intimately, viscerally and yet innocuously in these everyday moments, gestures, utterances, social forms and functions. After all, what better place to contemplate the everyday lives we live than firmly embraced by the noise and fluster of it all.

Every now and then I resurface to consider the ebb and flow of Others around me. Interested in the patterns and logical substrate of our human experience as I am, I wonder just how much these fluctuating tides and effervescing complexities of human experience represent underlying statistical laws and probabilistic biases. Are the patterns and specific encodings inherent to nature and only apparently unique in or as individuals, simply undercurrents of symmetry and physics that we experience as persons, identities, subjective selves and social contexts?

Inevitable, perhaps, for anyone who spends sufficient time down this rabbit hole of philosophical uncertainty is the reflexive bootstrap of self-inflection. I spend so much time wondering if everything I perceive is little more than the consequences of blind, unknowing forces. The destination may always be transient but every now and then I feel that I glimpse the unknowing void at the center of even these speculative reflections. I ponder whether even the subjective experience and conceptual architecture that approximates to understanding all of this fascinating complexity is itself and also really nothing more than so much random, meaningless and temporary pattern.

Coffee and cybernetics.

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