Saturday, May 29, 2010

Daniel June: Practicing to Master

Practicing to Master

 
This is an essay I’m writing out to help structure my practicing schedule. I am going to sit on it for a while—just a rough draft. Your feedback is welcome.

                Postmodern writing lacks content, other than its obfuscating style, and this is consistent for Derrida, Lacan, Delueze, where the main message is in how it is side, not in important ideas, but in a sneering attitude. The tone is clear, though the ideas are not, a sort of mood music, an incantation or magical spell over the intellectuals, a style aiming to paralyze, bully, and ultimately seduce the weak to join the intellectual bully. Postmodernism, which could be called the rise of the mediocre, or slave morality gone intellectual, is best ended by the tyranny of a master morality and its discipline: great art requires great practice – and greatness is the only proper goal to a noble man.
            Great prose takes much practice, and not only practice at writing, but the creation of a strong consciousness able to face the biting truth of reality, and sooth it into eloquence. Style is the setting of a piece, the tone and mood. More than anything else, a world is defined by the consciousness which creates it, the style of consciousness that structures it into an experience. Within one universe, there may be as many worlds as there are perspectives. The strongest minds will be able to reduce it to simplicity, to directly express its nature. In this, ornament is central, for just as syntax and grammar imitate the moves and attempts of a mind in time, so too does ornament and rhetoric evoke the heart that supports and feeds the mind in action.
            A walk through the woods is richer if you know the names of trees: names allow a man to see individual things separate from their surroundings. The ability to name a thing requires eyes that see without words, a vision that knows how to paint an object into existence by naming it.
            Language becomes a playing field, a recess of the mind from the work of life, with the joy of syntax, the idiosyncrasies of diction, the poetical densities, the genius of the perfect word, and the resonance of words with words, the long strong focus required to construct a period, balanced with antithesis, climax, and even teased out with rhymes, puns, and subtle games of self-reference, such as a sentence within a sentence, a play within a play, a god before the mirror, a child giving birth to herself.. What is deep speaks to what is deep; what is superficial speaks to what is superficial: we must be masters of both: the depth of truth, and the superficiality of beauty.
            Read your work out loud several times, and read your favorite authors the same way. Combine all the senses, especially voice and vision. Style is joy, the joy of personality. A personality is nothing more than a conscious style. Mind is a willing, unified, changing, self-owned focus, but it is language insofar as it thinks in time, through images, and the handles it places on them, words, names, or images, so to skip from one to the next easily.
            Master morality requires the antidemocratic morality, the morality of subordinating that which produces more subordinated, and ordinating that which produces more ordinated. This is de facto life, each man resolves into his place, like a marble down a hill, finding his nook to perch, as high as he can, but more importantly, as stable as he can.
            Cut your works by 50%, read them aloud, construct your sentences in parallel construction, plan your essays as an architect plans a building, prefer the thing to the commentary of the thing, and show thing in such a way that the commentary silently shows itself, be specific, be likeable if you can, but authentic even if you cannot, write about people, use anecdotes, examples, quotes, and quotations. Over years of work, develop a theme.
            It becomes apparent over an author’s career the undersense of a theme in his work. More and more his novels resolve to retelling the same story over and over again. Melville’s quest repeats through all his work, Whitman’s motherdeath romance never leaves him.
            Aristotle wrote that “no great genius was ever without some mixture of madness, nor can anything grand or superior to the voice of common mortals be spoken except by the agitated soul.” You must take your whole life, subordinate the difficult, but do not cut it off nor cut off the best in deference to it. The allistic method is to use all, leave each part as much itself as possible, but relate all things to a larger schema. Your goals must be cemented together into one goal, hardened into a unified purpose.
            Each man shines brightest in one narrow direction; his success is in aligning that light to the world, and working especially through that aspect. Every style is based on a trick, a sort of metatrope, by which, once mastered, you could predict him. In the same way, the skeleton of a situation is transparent enough to the piercing eye, but a full ambience requires a lifetime of study.
            True practice is struggling at the edge of your ability, to continually test yourself, to plan on it, to stretch yourself further and further, to set yourself to make many honest mistakes, and to continually wrestle to overcome them. In this way, your skill circuits in your brain will be well-myelinated, and you can exact the best effect from a little bet of practice. Practice a new style, a new trick a new idea, slowly, perfect, and then build up moment. Set yourself for immediate critical feedback, a ruthless commentary on your work – get that coach and internalize him. Practice deeply and obsessively. Practice in the boiler room: make conditions as difficult as possible. Minimize the slack space, so your practice is much harder than the performance you must make.
            See the gestalt, and break it into smaller bits, which you can repeat each till you have mastered them. Break a skill into small circuit – cut up your poems, memorize the small parts. Slow your sentence down – take a day on a single phrase. Observe, judge, and strategize your performance: coach yourself. Learn to feel what optimum practice is, and sink into it every time.
            Your long term self image, how you imagine yourself in the end, determines your success more than anything: let this image become your eidolon, a symbol of your purpose.
            The unconscious can compute 11 million pieces of information per second, the conscious only 40 pieces: so practice continually to make it all second nature. Acquire that one powerful idea that moves everything else in your life, and tie it into your primal drives for survival, importance, and love.
            Even Whitman, a loafer who slept late, and was lax with his schedules, was “all urgency and strain when it came to his writings.” So you must economize your mental energy, herd it away even from duty, and let your slowly building reservoirs of stay energy by directed again to the same goals. Energy slowly builds until it is ready to burst, and we seldom get excited about what we expected to, but if we learn to reinterpret every novel excitement as a part of the same immortal goal, we will have maximized our effort towards it. The ability to interpret a book becomes again our greatest tool in structuring our own lives.
            It takes 10, 000 hours of deliberate practice to master an art: monomania wins the day. Learn to practice as effectively as possible.


~~
Perfection
Is
Easy

www.msu.edu/~junedan
~~


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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Reaction to Rand Paul on Civil Rights is histor...

Reaction to Rand Paul on Civil Rights is histor...

Republicans Up Rhetoric on Eve of DADT Congress...

Republicans Up Rhetoric on Eve of DADT Congress...


GOP Gears up for fight;  Ups rhetoric on eve of Congressional DADT Repeal Vote 
Opponents of overturning the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy are cranking up their rhetoric and threatening roadblocks on multiple fronts, including what promises to be a fierce Senate floor fight, as the tide appears to be turning against them.

Elsewhere,  Americans for Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) director Peter LaBarbera is upping the ante with reports that gays in the military are 3x as likely to commit sexual assault as straights.  
Proponents of repealing the gays in the military policy appear poised to score a major victory today in the Senate Armed Services Committee, where they likely have the votes to attach repeal language to the defense authorization bill.  It is hoped that the  same language  will be adopted even as early as today on the House floor as part of that chamber’s consideration of the defense bill.
As repeal backers gain momentum,  the opposition is revving up its rhetoric:  
Senate Armed Services ranking member John McCain said Thursday that he would “without a doubt” support a filibuster if the bill goes to the floor with language that Sen. Joe Lieberman (ID-Conn.) plans to offer as an amendment during today’s markup.

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US Congress Set to Repeal DADT: US on List with Iran, N. Korea | NowPublic News Coverage

US Congress Set to Repeal DADT: US on List with Iran, N. Korea | NowPublic News Coverage

Journalist On Target re Palin and Rand Paul's Indefensible Stance | NowPublic News Coverage

Journalist On Target re Palin and Rand Paul's Indefensible Stance | NowPublic News Coverage
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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

O'Keefe, 3 others, plead guilty to charges re ...

O'Keefe, 3 others, plead guilty to charges re ...
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NY Senator Joseph Addabbo's B-Day Bash Disrupted by LGBT Protests | NowPublic News Coverage

Wagon with poster "We're a GAY and HAPPY ...Image via Wikipedia
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NY Senator Joseph Addabbo's B-Day Bash Disrupted by LGBT Protests | NowPublic News Coverage

New York State Senator Joseph Addabbo was among 8 NY Democrats who voted against the Marriage Equality bill in Dec. 2009.  This past  Sunday,  that came back to haunt him at his Birthday celebration and fundraiser  in Queens:  LGBT protestors showed up,  and yelled their protests.  
Call it fairness. Call it karma. Call it Joseph Addabbo getting a run for his money.
Members of the direct action group Queer Rising confronted Addabbo about the substantial financial and electoral assistance he received from gay groups in 2008.


Yelling  “Joe Must Go!” to a room that included the senator’s family, the gay advocacy protesters voiced their disappointment.  Some gays, though, have remarked that such tactics are unseemly, and work against the gay cause in the long run.  
NBCNewYork reached out to Senator Addabbo’s office, where he was not available for comment.

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Should Feds Reverse Arizona Immigration Law? | NowPublic News Coverage


Should Feds Reverse Arizona Immigration Law? | NowPublic News Coverage
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Sen. Scott Brown to Vote 'No' on Repeal of DADT : Wants Review | NowPublic News Coverage

Sen. Scott Brown to Vote 'No' on Repeal of DADT : Wants Review | NowPublic News Coverage

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Eternal Recurrence in the 21st Century : From Nietzsche, to Gurdjieff, to Peake



In the 19th century, Nietzsche, in his desire to escape Platonism and Christianity,  was gripped by the idea of the eternal recurrence of this earthly life,  which binds us to be loyal to itself,  and negates the transcendent and static realms of the Platonist Ideal and the Christian eternal heaven.


For the early part of the 20th century, Gurdjieff's idea of a spiral of time replaced the idea of the same exact things and events going forever in Nietzschean circles.  Giles Deleuze,  transforming Nietzsche and Kierkegaard,  expanded on this spiral  - as did, to a lesser degree,  Maurice Nichols  -  and wrote Difference and Repetition.  


For the 21st century,  we receive the eternal recurrence of binary mind theorist Anthony Peake,  the British author who gives us "the Daemon"  of his dyad of Eidolon and Daemon:  Who takes Nietzsche and Gurdjieff, along with Kierkegaard and Deleuze,   to undreamt of heights with 21st century brain science, quantum physics , NDE studies  and the world-as -Bohmian IMAX.  His American counterpart, Eric Steinhart,  does a parallel study of John Hick and recurrence as resurrection and replication.


History has been kind:  In each epoch, we have the appropriate teachers to keep alive the idea,  born in antiquity, and cherished by Pythagorus and Hericlitus,  of eternal recurrence.




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John Mark Karr Sought ; Facing Allegations of Cyber-Stalking | NowPublic News Coverage

John Mark Karr Sought ; Facing Allegations of Cyber-Stalking | NowPublic News Coverage

White House and Congressional Democrats Reach Deal on DADT repeal | NowPublic News Coverage

White House and Congressional Democrats Reach Deal on DADT repeal | NowPublic News Coverage
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Friday, May 21, 2010

Nebraska to Follow AZ on Immigration Law | NowPublic News Coverage

Nebraska to Follow AZ on Immigration Law | NowPublic News Coverage
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Arts Technica: How Wikipedia manages Porn Images and the FBI | NowPublic News Coverage


Arts Technica: How Wikipedia manages Porn Images and the FBI | NowPublic News Coverage

Expedia.com Launches LGBT Travel Website | NowPublic News Coverage


Expedia.com Launches LGBT Travel Website | NowPublic News Coverage
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Harvey Milk Day is May 22: Gay Advocates Will Honor Fallen Hero | NowPublic News Coverage


Harvey Milk Day is May 22: Gay Advocates Will Honor Fallen Hero | NowPublic News Coverage
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Twitter Fights PA District Attorney's Subpoena ...

Twitter Fights PA District Attorney's Subpoena ...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Global Protests after Malawian Gays get 14 Year Prison Sentence | NowPublic News Coverage

Global Protests after Malawian Gays get 14 Year Prison Sentence | NowPublic News Coverage

Rainbow Sash Alliance To Descend on Churches on Pentacost Sunday | NowPublic News Coverage

Rainbow Sash Alliance To Descend on Churches on Pentacost Sunday | NowPublic News Coverage

White House Embraces Upstart Who Beat Specter - NYTimes.com

White House Embraces Upstart Who Beat Specter - NYTimes.com
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Rand Paul, Tea Party Star, wins GOP nomination ...


Rand Paul, Tea Party Star, wins GOP nomination ...


Paul wins GOP  nomination for KY Senate Seat 
Son of Libertarian Ron Paul,  47 year old  Rand Paul is the never-elected ophthalmologist from the land of bluegrass who is so red he scares Dick Cheney,  according to the New York Daily News:

How conservative is he? The 47-year-old Paul - who trounced establishment candidate Trey Grayson in Kentucky's GOP Senate primary Tuesday - wants to abolish the federal departments of education, commerce and energy, as well as the income tax.
Like Palin,  this Tea Party Patriot is opposed to all government bailouts and earmarks, and President Barack Obama's  "socialist" health care law. He favors a constitutional amendment banning abortion, even in cases of rape and incest.
But in a show of libertarianism,  he favors legalizing marijuana.  
His remarks about Tiger Woods bringing cities and city youth to exclusive country clubs and golf courses is revealing in its ignorance. 
The New York Daily news called his political remarks on Woods "peculiar".  
Some of his positions frighten even staunch conservatives like Dick Cheney.
For example, the father of three wants to pull U.S. military forces out of all overseas missions. Like his daddy - former presidential candidate and libertarian Rep. Ron Paul of Texas - he views the Federal Reserve as a source of much trouble that needs to be clamped down.
A "Day of Reckoning"
"We are encountering a day of reckoning," Paul said Tuesday night,  using his favorite "end is near"  rhetoric.  "And this Tea Party movement is a message to Washington that we are unhappy. . . "
On  NPR yesterday, host Robert Siegel asked Paul in an interview , if he  -  the son of libertarian hero and former presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas)  -  thought the Civil Rights Act went too far. 
Seigel reminded Paul  that in the past he has said  that the Americans with Disabilities Act was an overreach of the federal government.
Paul said he saw no place for racism, and thinks disabilities could be handled locally, without the help of the federal government.   For example,  giving a handicapped person a first floor office rather than putting in an expensive elevator.  
Later on MSNBC's "Rachel Maddow Show" ,  when asked about ENDA,  Paul had this to say.  

"Should we limit speech from people we find abhorrent?" Paul asked. "Should we limit racists from speaking? I don't want to be associated with those people, but I also don't want to limit their speech in any way, in the sense that we tolerate boorish and uncivilized behavior because that's one of the things that freedom requires... that we allow people to be boorish and uncivilized, but that doesn't mean we approve of it."


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Under New Influence