The Persistence of False Belief

Do we possess beliefs or do beliefs possess us? Are the distributed, integrated information artefacts and systems of belief actually entities in their own right? Are individual nodes in a networked, self-propagating information system really the storage components for the resilient continuity of an idea, a belief or an ideology? Are the intrinsic errors (within…

Worthless Chemistry and Orchid Dust

Fashion wears us more than we could ever be said to wear it; we only have these experiences and ideas in direct and reflexive proportion to the extent that they, in fact, have us. We do not search for meaning - it searches for us and there, finding us as so many yawning vacuums and…

Unravelling Tapestries of Cryptographic Entropy

The endless unravelling of assurance at one end of this cryptographic tapestry is simultaneously the enduring incentive, obligation and functional necessity of creating more sophisticated and impermeable logical entanglements at the other end. A question which springs to mind is as to the plausible inevitability of an acceleration of applied human or machine intelligence overtaking…

Ideology

Ideology is a tool, a technology of descriptive (i.e. algorithmic) information compression and generalised (over-)simplification through which complex realities and observed facts are rendered comprehensible.  Decisions, evaluations and strategic planning for continuity (of self, of organisations, of civilisation) are facilitated by compression. Having cultivated or procedurally-defined the conceptual boundaries and adaptive grammars of such systems…

The Gospel of Emptiness

Our images, our Self- or Other-portraits and all of our representational fantasies are always subtle dissimulations of a projected, doubly-inflected Self that we only ever feel that we need to cultivate - (in ourselves as much as in others), to construct, because it is precisely what is expected of us, what everyone else "does" (or…

On Writing

All writing is experimentation. Hemingway suggested that there is no good (first draft) writing, that all the quality emerges from rewriting and while I do not doubt that there is wisdom in this - I find that words flow most smoothly as though of their own accord; the essence of an idea, a concept, an…

Enigma: Everything is Self-Representation but Nothing is Self

Consider how all art, all self-expression can only ever be the hyper-inflating interior surface of some compound, complex emptiness; how from nothing we have made everything (possible) and how the rich curvature and self-inflected acceleration of all thought, all culture and all reality was always (and already) the mischievous logical negation of unity, of completeness…

Silence

These marble busts at the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg silently contemplate an ancient wisdom; that the metaphysical vacuum beyond ourselves and as represented by the deep mystery of Other minds is identical to that logical discontinuity and foundational uncertainty within our own minds and there is, as Wittgenstein said of these deep (but everyday)…

Curiouser and Curiouser: The Complex Emptiness of (Self and) Words

The curiousity of narrative is precisely the (very) many degrees of freedom available to the hyper-inflating interior spaces of language and an associated conceptual eloquence of psychologically-resonant teleology implicit to story-telling. The resonance derives from the ways that language and narrative reflexively shape experience, perception, culture and cognition. The degrees of freedom highlight the logical…

The Emptiness of Art

The true mystery of art lies not in the many ways that it is a "thing", in the mischievously multiplicitous subtleties of manifestation; it rests in the many (more) ways in which it is a vacuum, a void, a potentiality and the endless presence of absence. We seek meaning in matter but fail to understand…

The Implicit Resilience of (a) Limited Cognitive Dissonance

Errors of information encoding generate the novelty through and by which these cultural systems successfully self-propagate as continuity and change. Narrative dissonance is a necessary component of social communication; an autonomous method for introducing the useful information entropy of difference through which biological, cognitive and cultural systems evolve and maintain resilience against catastrophic disassembly.  This…

Psychology of Taboos

The curious thing about the psychology of taboos is that (generally speaking) the more a thing is prohibited, the more psychological currency and cultural value it (inversely) acquires, and - consequently - the more the associated behaviours self-propagate.  We might identify this counterintuitive displacement of value, meaning and fascination (or attention) as semiotic elasticity.