Tuesday, October 23, 2007


The word “cipher” in former times meant “zero” and had the same origin (see Zero — Etymology), and later was used for any decimal digit, even any number. There are these theories about how the word “cipher” may have come to mean encoding:

In the course of my life I struggle with the attempting to "decode" the pursuits of my brain to those that might be interested in those pursuits. Some pursuits are well known, the concept and realization of power in society, the coming resource wars, the struggle with the inherent inefficiencies of emotions vs the need for experiential knowledge of how those emotions make us human.

Some things that I could never have hoped to explain I have since found elegantly depicted in books, art, comics and the insights of those I have had the opportunity to meet. Those moments of recognition of a thought tangent, an amoebic concept realized provide me with relief, comfort that what swirls is only a swirl because I have yet to happen upon the external realization of that swirl. I will also sometimes feel guilty that those depictions are almost never coming from me and thus in the comic scheme of things I am only a taker, never an enlightener. That guilt is partly what motivated me to start this blog. I thought if I took snippets of the things, information, images etc that find recognition in my swirl maybe it would be my own version of communication that someone else could recognize. I think it's fair to say that I am still a long way off, but here is another attempt regardless.

Recent events, some cumulative, some actually recent and visceral have forced a real necessity to work to align my internal model of "how things work" with how I interact with the world. I would prefer that part of my life work include truly walking through the world true to my perception the world I sometimes fear is really only in my head. I have had moments of real clarity in my life where the infinite connectivity is deeply obvious and operable. This is not one of those. I feel things that deeply conflict with my opaque sense of order. Irrational rage, disappointment, impossible connectivity and, to my complete surprise, no desire whatsoever to run from the conflict.

The moon is 94% full tonight, so maybe that is why. Maybe I really am not afraid anymore of the mess. Maybe I need to balance the impending doom of resource constraint, that threatens to eviscerate the painfully thin veil of civilization I have always known, with irrational hope and exuberance that by playing, participating in the mess we can escape a unimaginably dark fate.

So that is my plan tonight. I could quite possibly wither and retreat tomorrow. Right now, though, I am listening to Bruce Springsteen and working really hard to say fuck it and jump into the morass. There was a night in high school where someone got the bright idea to jump off the train track bridge into the reservoir. I felt terror then too and said fuck it and I jumped. It felt great and I remember smiling about it for months afterward. Of course there are those moments when I felt fear and said fuck it and ended up broken and bleeding on the rocks, but as much as that is true we have to remember the jumps that were great. There will always be fear, pain, confusion, anger and worse apathy. That is true. What the bitch is that those exist whether or not you ask for them. It's the exhilaration and joy you have to fight for. So fight.

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