/ Cosmology … Theology /
When I was a kid it seemed to me that the congregation of my church was on the same page as my Sunday School teacher: God would judge us, our sins would be exposed. God would be right. Human institutions –media, government, academia — would serve God, serve judgment, serve the truth. We’d all see it, we’d all understand it. If we hadn’t understood our sins before we’d understand them then, at judgment, we’d see that God was right, we were wrong; but we’ve got it right now. Now we understand what Jesus was forgving us for. We woudn’t be worthy of the forgiveness, but we never thouht we would be: that’s what’s so miraculous about divine forgiveness.
After judgment people who didn’t know shit from Shinola would get out of the way of those who did. Society would finally work. Science, history — future history if not past history — would agree. The philosopher might have a better understanding of the details the way this or that commentator might have a penetrating understanding of Hamlet; but it wasn’t a situation where Hamlet alone understood .01% of things while the bosses committed every sin but understood nothing.
Hamlet was tricky: but we all understood what was what: a little course correction and we’d be fine, forever. It wasn’t one of these things where no one, including Shakespeare, has a clue what the play is about: especially not Polonius or Rosencrantz: and certainly not poor Ophelia! But Polonius-etc. are the ones in charge of church, state … State, state, and more state. Shakespeare knew and we knew too, even if less well. The playwright knew perfectly, like God. The teacher knew too: better than the student, but not as well as Shakespeare: Student-A knew better than Student-B …
Now I believe that Beckett knew, so did Billie Whitelaw: Phil and I knew better than Rosencrantz or Guildenstern: the New York Times critic knew enough to bullshit a few paragraphs. Newton understood part, Halley understood more than anyone except Newton, but after a few years, the whole Royal Society, greedy for funding, was back to shit on Shinola.
How ‘about that for an actress!
Reality Theater scrapbook scribble
Steven Johnson has been presenting us with a magnificent series of books on culture, markets and evolution: I love his image of Darwin bumping near a major invention at a reef in India. Darwin discussed some of his ideas with his ship’s captain, Fitzroy. But he knew to tread lightly, not to go too far: not to let himself see more than a fraction of where the evidence seemed to be pointing. A century and a half later Johnson still has to be careful how he says what he says. (You want proof? just see that he absolutely doesn’t know who I am, who Illich was, what Illich (and pk) said! or tried to say: at least tried to bring up!
I still haven’t make my title point as clearly as I intend, but a little thought will show you a bulk of it.
more in a sec