the lost man chronicles
the contradictions of learning to be real .32
"In this man there are two opposite tendencies: always to regret any wasted time, and always to waste it willingly. For Mercury makes one inclined to amusements, games, and other light pleasures. …Since his caution with money kept him away from play, he often played by himself. It must be noted that his miserliness did not aim at acquiring riches, but at removing his fear of poverty—although, perhaps avarice results from an excess of this fear…"
~ The Watershed, A Biography of Johannes Kepler, Arthur Koestler
I love having sincere conversations with people. They are so enlightening.
Recently, someone wrote to me: " …just as any system, person, or God contains apparent contradictions, the more complex something is—the more real it is."
I found that to be an extraordinarily wonderful point and an insight that beautifully summarized a lot for me. The more real it is, the more contradictory it will be. Indeed this is quite true.
I know a few too many people who need to stay true to one point of view, or one system of perception, or one moral matrix, and as a result end up being plastic, hypocrites and quite unreal.
They are just following the code and subsequently end up being just as programmed as my computer.
Those who truly understand what being non-conformist means, do not rebel or revolt just for the thrill of it. No, breaking or bending or going around or underneath or flying above the rules, is done because one knows that she cannot be fulfilled otherwise. Time is ticking and opportunity equally tocks away. So sometimes one has to say "phuck it," and risk. The wisest do it prudently.
"Turner could be penny-wise and pound-foolish,
but contradictions are typical of the man.
In his seat behind the Braves dugout, he'd watch with a sinking heart as foul balls sailed up into the stands and were scrambled after by fans. "Hey, throw that ball back," he'd shout, hoping to save a few bucks. But when it came to big money, he could be utterly reckless."
~ Citizen Turner, The Wild Rise of an American Tycoon,
Robert & Gerald Jay Goldberg
And thus, we contradict ourselves often because we are constantly experimenting and learning to make our way through the world. Learning to see what works best for us. Learning not to blindly trust tradition and other's experience, but likewise being open to it knowing that you do not live long enough to make all the same mistakes yourself.
But as some of the greatest minds have known, you really don't understand something and you cannot see its potential without going through all the steps of what is already known yourself. It is only then that you can be creative, innovative, discover, learn, and contribute something new to the world. And by going through this process you also must be willing to appear contradictory.
You see, since you have done as others have done along the way to your very own destiny and epiphanies, you gradually build the expectations that you will hold to this middle road. Thus, when at last you see that sign that tells you to veer off the beaten path, knowing all along that it was there somewhere to steer off onto, others are bound to become rankled and riveted to accuse you of being contradictory. It happens all the time.
But the redeeming principle is that those who do, those who have indeed conversed with the sublime, will know something wonderful that the vexed will never know.
"He explored various fields of mathematics as if he were the first man to do so (and made a number of discoveries), which later on he found to have already been discovered. He argued with men of every profession for the profit of his mind. He jealously preserved all his writings and kept any book he could lay hands on with the idea that they might be useful at some time in the future."
~ The Watershed
all the gems .31 33. the voices