Saturday, 20 February 2016

Review 5: Martin Heidegger, Basic Writings

Sensitive and Otherwordly, A Review of Basic Writings, an anthology of German philosopher Martin Heidegger

This is a strong collection, benefiting from an excellent and up to date critical apparatus and providing a decent, if not exhaustive, overview of the thinking of German philosopher Martin Heidegger through a well judged collection of essays by that author. These include the introduction to Being and Time, The Letter on Humanism, The Question Concerning Technology, The Way to Language and more. 

It is indeed the collection's main strength to show the development, spanning several decades, of Heidegger's thought albeit with a larger emphasis on later pieces, as Heidegger's shorter writings tend to belong to the post World War Two period. 

I read, or should I say re-read, this collection after having taken a year long break from my forays into the captivating world of Heideggeriana, looking into other ways of interpreting history, the world, morality and so forth. Over this period I have become more sensitive to the role of conspiracy in human affairs, including the occult, Natural Law, the monetary system and methods of mind control and mass manipulation. 

With this in mind, Heidegger's writings as contained in this book, for all their poetic beauty, sensitivity to the nuances of language, awareness of the predicaments of our time and attempts at providing new foundations for thinking the now, lack gravely in worldly knowledge and street wisdom when it comes to assessing actual as opposed to fictitious motors in human history. 

While I am not prepared to discount the role of the metaphysical tradition in the shaping of today's world, including modern technology and this very web page, that is far from being the whole story, if one samples one's reading widely, and that is not something Heidegger will tell you.

Thus I would characterise this collection and Heidegger's writings generally as otherwordly, not quite of this world, but as nonetheless shedding light on basic phenomena such as the difference between beings and Being (the ontological difference), the origins of modern science, what technology actually entails on a planetary scale for the human species, the meaning of freedom, the relationship between thought and language, etc.

Thus with a bit of recule, as the French say, I would heartily recommend this compendium of Heidegger's but with the proviso that however seductive and totalising a narrative Heidegger provides, it is far from being the whole story and any genuine quest for truth will require study in many more areas - including political history, the occult, the works of independent researchers worldwide - than that provided by a single philosopher, however genial. 

For as Heidegger himself says in his essay on technology, the destining of revealing that sends into enframing also contains within it the seeds for a more primal and dignified existence which is to observe all essential unfolding on this planet. And that includes the step of reading authors besides Heidegger who look(ed) deeply into the fabric of the world but with different, less philosophical, lenses on. 

All that being said, this is philosophy of the first rank and deserves nothing less than five stars. 

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Review 4: Friedrich Gulda's Well Tempered Clavier

My Definitive 48: A Triumph of Musical Content over Musical Performance

A Review of Friedrich Gulda's recording of Bach's Das Wohltemperierte Clavier

It's been twelve years since I started exploring interpretations of Bach's Well Tempered Clavier, beginning with Richter, then Gould, then some lacklustre version I won't do the honour of mentioning by name, then a harpsichord version of Book 1, then Edwin Fischer's, then Angela Hewitt's, then Andras Schiff's and lastly Pollini's. 

Only now has my search for the perfect 48 ended. I have found in Friedrich Gulda my definitive recording of these pieces. It pains me to think of the money and time I could have saved had I been made aware of this version sooner but fate wanted me take the long haul it seems.

When it comes to Bach, I value transparency of playing so that each line can be isolated in the mind and meditatively absorbed in the integrated whole of the perfect music that is is. I quite liked Gould's 48 for this reason but his bravado and loud playing - either taken too fast or too slow - have always alienated me somewhat and many of the preludes and fugues become deadened and boring through his over-interpretation; over-interpretation also mars Richter's version which also lacks a clear base line, preventing clear appreciation of all the voices of the fugues and of the counterpoint technique.

Friedrich Gulda's recording has in its favour an immediate, one might say intimate, non concert hall sound, the microphones having been placed directly above the strings. Adding to the transparency of the sound is Gulda's extra delicate playing, slow and soft at the same time, where base and treble are clearly audible, which force one to pay attention to each note, each phrasing, each development and come away mesmerised. This is the most sensitively played Bach for piano on the market. 

Gulda's tempoes are also the most convincing I've heard - for example his very slow playing of Prelude I/8 and the fast pace of Fugue II/18  - and I have never enjoyed listening to these pieces as much as now. It's like all these years I'd been drinking watered wine until two days ago when, having purchased this set,  I had my first sip of undiluted wine.

This set pleases me so much in its understated mastery that I cannot listen to it for too long out of fear of jinxing the spell of perfection it has me under. So long have I sought this exact interpretation, without even knowing it existed, that now I know that this has to be my favourite disc not only of classical music but of all musical genres - everything else can go to the dogs as far as this version of the 48 is concerned. 

It only half surprises me that Gramophone gave a poor review of this set because it is hard for me to understand how critics could overlook such perfection but then I am also aware that critics are no more clued up than I and in many cases are plain wrong.

Others may prefer more performance heavy versions of these Preludes and Fugues but for those seeking the intellectual and spiritual content of these works, Gulda's is the one to buy, at least in the opinion of this reviewer who has over a decade's worth of exploring interpretations of this work.

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Thought 69: Uni-Verse

While not etymology in the conventional sense, i.e. the origin of words, but nonetheless etymology in the Greek sense of the true, the actual - otherwise known in occult thinking as 'green language' - the word universe, far from supporting forays into astronomical physics that are all the rage, supports rather the more modest enterprise of poetry if one understands the verse in uni-verse as being a reference to that specific creative use of language; indeed they say that the universe is spoken into existence for as the Bible states
in the beginning was the word. 
Of course verse can also mean 'side' - as in verse and re-verse - and universe can thus be understood as the one-sided, the mirror for our microcosmic existence, in the sense of as above, so below, otherwise known as the Natural Law principle of correspondence. The body, for example, is a universe unto itself and even our faeces is made of star stuff - at least according to author Carl Sagan. It is this insight that informed the famous injunction of the Delphi oracle in Ancient Greece
know thyself and you will know the universe and the gods. 

Monday, 8 February 2016

Thought 68: Plato and The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray by celebrated author Oscar Wilde contains within its midst the teachings of Plato, for Plato taught that the soul of man had an independent reality rather like the painting of Dorian Gray in the book which, as the artistic representation of Dorian's soul, has a life of its own. 

As Dorian proceeds from innocent youth to corrupt maturity, ultimately committing first degree murder as well as coercion and leading innocent friends astray, so does his painting gradually grow in ugliness and deformation, even showing, at the latter stage of the book, signs of hypocrisy for good deeds performed with ulterior motives. 

It is clear to me that Wilde was familiar with the Greek thinker Plato and The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of the best novelisations of Plato's ethics, at least concerning the intangible emanation that is the ψυχή. 

Indeed, for Plato bad actions and immorality taint and mutilate the soul just as much as battle wounds leave scars on the physical body. Plato took this concept so far that in his dialogue Gorgias he painted the afterworld as a ruthless process of judgement of the naked souls of human beings, devoid of all appendages such as body, wealth, friends, family. 

The soul in its unique isolated reality was to determine whether one was sent to Hell or what the Greeks called Tartarus or to the Heaven that was the Isle of the Blessed. In other words both Plato and Oscar Wilde believe in the absolute reality of the soul which is coloured by one's deeds and thoughts in earthly life. 

Although one to stretch the boundaries of public morality, Oscar Wilde reveals himself in his novel as being the opposite of a moral relativist who denies any objective difference between right and wrong, thinking that anything goes. 

Rather the moral message of the book is unambiguously clear, speaking against murder, blackmail, or service to self above all else, for such ill deeds cause the soul, whether for all to see through the medium of a painting or not, to be denatured, diseased and corrupted. 

Wilde thus joins the tradition started by Plato according to which our thoughts, emotions and actions leave a trace on our soul which may or may not be judged in the afterlife, as is the case in Christianity. 

In summary, Oscar Wilde may have played with the superficial aspects of public morality, such as the prohibition against sodomy or the preaching of assistance to the poor (see, in this regard, his formidable essay The Soul of Man Under Socialism), but when it came to the deep internal realities of private morality which impact the individual soul, Wilde was as aware of Natural Law principles as the thinker Plato. 

Addendum - The title of the book is semantically quite rich and it should be noted that it is not: The Portrait of Dorian Gray. The 'Picture' of Dorian Gray refers both to the painting of him in the book as well as the image the character projects or is perceived as having by his contemporaries (his 'picture'). Moreover the novel itself provides us with the full picture of Dorian Gray. 

Thursday, 4 February 2016

Thought 67: Money

As independent researcher Mark Passio rightly claims (see his website, money - mon-eye, one eye, meaning third eye vision by proxy (if one takes 'green or 'alchemical' language seriously and the fact that one dollar bills used to have the masonic all seeing eye on the reverse) - is a religion of slavery for slaves. It is the one and only religion in so far as its reach extends light years further than any organised mainstream religion.

As religion, money enslaves for the word religion comes from the Latin religare which means to hold back, to tie back. Money holds people back, forces them to 'make' or 'earn' a 'living' by selling their labour to causes which, by and large, are nefarious, in that often they are human and planet destroying. It is also the leading cause of time poverty.

Money is proxy currency, i.e. a current of energy, which has talismanic qualities in so far as a talisman has properties of magic when worn, carried and passed on. Money regulates the flow and - along with Big Oil - the motion of the Modern World. I say it is a proxy currency because true currency lies in spending time and paying attention which are freely given and do not falsify life on earth to the extent that money does. 

Money is the religion of the New World Order. The end goal for the occult psychopaths who rule the world is to have us 'chipped' from birth so that money is integral to your and my body and if we choose to be a 'fugitive of the system' - to use an expression of said occultists - we will be barred from any interaction with monetary society.

The dollar sign, an 's' with a line in the middle - $ - can be seen as a wave pattern, for matter is wave energy at a quantum level, and wave and flow are the same thing. It can also be seen as whip, a fascist symbol of the master's control over his slave, or even as spelling the world 'is'. 

Let there be money, fiat pecunia - harking back to the fiat lux 'let there be light' of the God of Genesis. It is no accident that our economic system is based on fiat currency, money coming to existence from the say so of the 'gods of money' to use William Engdahl's book title. And 'is' also links to the Egyptian goddess Isis, goddess of human activity, of the waters and flow. Genesis itself contains the words gene and isis

Until as a species we free ourselves from the great enslaver that is money through time banks, even complementary currencies that aren't rigged like fiat money, we are doomed to pitiable existences lived at the mercy of psychopathic controllers and their minions, such as Daily Mail readers

It is worth googling 'living without money' to discover resources on how to live without money and follow the example of exceedingly brave souls - such as Mark Boyle in the UK and Heidmarie Schwermer in Germany - who have ditched the enslaver that is money and felt happier, yes happier, as a result despite the loss of amenity that money typically provides.  

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Poem 11: Illusions perdues

A poetic appendix to the novel Illusions perdues by Honoré de Balzac.

Lucien Chardon
Bel homme garçon

Prey to an ambition
Nourished by illusion

Sought the company
Of High Society

But gained no ground
Lacking in background

As he lived off the funds
Of cherished loved ones

Condemned to misery...
The fate of so many

Suffering the injustice
Of that brutal artifice:

Monetary currency!
For economic scarcity

Serves ever to control
Your and my small role

In the absent Heaven:
The Comédie humaine!