Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

Good Gracious!

Originally posted on February 23, 2017

This blog has been inactive for a few months as we’ve been moving from Texas to California. We have reached an age where we need the help of our daughter’s family, and, indeed, more of us may well be able to achieve more of what we aim for. Meanwhile, our goals and aspirations have been cut back a little. So, starting over, a little more humbly.

No Problem: a contemporary meme. Is it pronounced meemetics or muhmetics? Meemetics. I just looked up memetics pronunciation. It’s a word that studies meanings beyond semantics or semiotics. That’s not the definition—look it up yourself. Dissecting word-meanings is not a popular pastime. There are several branches of language study that do this, from etymology to philology. There was no such word in a dictionary published in the early 1970s.

Goodness gracious! My land! Holy Cow! What exclamatory phrases are in and what are so passé that few people today know them. Indeed, I may be getting to an age that bridges multiple generations that I don’t know what young people today are hearing, using, understanding.

This has been quite a project, moving my mother-in-law and ourselves. There are a thousand-and-one details to arrange for. I envision my wife taking the lead, sort of like Don Quixote, while I am more like Sancho Panza. (I love the song from the 1960s play, Man of La Mancha (about Don Quixote), sung by Sancho Panza about why he pals around with that crazy old coot: “I like him.”  I really like Allee, and am deeply grateful that on the whole, she is a great mind and a great leader.
My latest project entails combining my theory of dimension-ality with the WoAR (World of Almost-Real) plus my Metaphysical Mandalas, plus Allee’s input! It works like this:

Akin to the Kabbalistic Tree of Life (about which I’ve also written), there  exist several levels of reality beyond the ordinary. Humanity’s purpose is to penetrate and appreciate them, and to understand them a bit. Not too much, because each level of reality has many aspects beyond them in both directions, more and less obvious.

Opening up this seemingly open-ended series of levels is one of our destinies, while another one is exploiting or applying whatever we open up. The pitfall is to think that we fully understand when in fact many mysteries remain, both on lower dimensions and higher ones, as well as at our more familiar dimensional level.

I use the term “dimensionality” to describe existence in terms of what dimension they reflect. Most of the world is thought about in terms of three dimensions—length, breadth (or width), and height (or depth). We can indicate how long, how wide, and how tall with our hands. Not so easy is indicating how it grew or diminished, much less died. That is to say, time does not have spatial coordinates. Yet that’s all we have as we live in three dimensions: Einstein supposed that time could be represented as another spatial dimension, though he knew it was subjective.

He knew about mind, subjectivity, but did not say it could also be considered a dimension because there were too many ways it was different from space. It’s less different from time. And I’m suggesting that mind can be represented as a dimension, too—the 5th dimension.

But raw mind only notices events. Animals have varying degrees of mind, though few or no animal minds think about mind itself. I assign another 6th dimension to that. That’s what most people do. The 6th dimension thinks about possibilities, could, should, would—in grammar it’s called the “subjunctive tense.”

But thinking about the subjunctive and other ways mind works takes it up to a 7th dimension! This involves philosophy, linguistics, anthropology, etc.  Higher mind includes music, art, social network preferences, etc.—other categories that rely more on intuition than cognition. 

At the 8th dimension what’s called mysticism becomes apparent. Admittedly, some weak intuitions about there being God or higher dimensions begins to occur at the 6th dimension and gets stronger at the 7th—and versions of mysticism are read about and practiced at lower dimensions. The apprehension that there are higher dimensions or perceptions of Heavenly Hosts or Levels of God-Stuff goes on and on to much higher dimensions.

Paradox also appears as sort-of normal. There was a cartoon on page 24 of the January 30, 2017 New Yorker where  God is pictured as a standard bearded old man in a gown saying to an angel or someone in Heaven, “Look, if I have to explain the meaning of existence, it isn’t funny.”  I like this because there are many overlapping dimensions including humor, paradox, and so forth at higher dimensions. The cartoon caption is telling because indeed it might well be true, at least to some degree.

The idea of “meaning” is powerfully subjective, though. That the meaning in the author’s mind will be the only “correct” one flies in the face of individual interpretation. Some people cannot “get” how there can be several possible “answers” or “interpretations.” Some postmodernist critics or philosophers note this, too. The author’s interpretation of anything may not be the only one, nor even the most evocative one, the one that brings you closer to the intention of the cartoonist or author.

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