It is a confusing thing, this story of being human. Being this particular human living at this point in space and time. It is a confusing thing for me ….. to be me. I don’t even know where to begin. These words have not been ordered according to some vague or exact recipe. They are just oozing into the world through an invisible opening at the very tip of my cheap plastic pen. And then they just sit there, arrogant and dumb, because the rule is they are not to be erased.
I had made a false start at this whimsical project last night. On the laptop. But I found myself writing about the so called technological singularity with some vague notion that the use of open source artificial general intelligence code could, perhaps through magic or analogy, somehow enable me to escape the confines of my mind. It had something to do with using a minutely operationalised language that wasn’t Maths or Science.
Well as you can imagine this path led nowhere. Or everywhere.I saw an endless proliferation of hyper links that in saying everything said nothing at all. So I erased the screen and went to bed rather relieved that I hadn’t let this wordy stillborn monster out, into the world at large. And if I am the only consciousness that reads my own words or thinks my own thoughts has anything new in fact been brought into the world?
I think that perhaps this, finally, is the question that is trying to be asked here. And it seems that I need to grapple with some of its parts before giving up. Knowing that a final elegant solution may well escape me but hoping / sensing that some useful clarification work would, at least, get done.
I think that the idea of a new thing, the complex part of the idea, is not the novelty but the thingness of the thing. Because I want to bridge the worlds of mental and the worlds of things. Bridge the ruptured wholeness of subject and object.
God alone knows why I should waste ink and bandwidth on this. It just amuses me, the enormity of the task, the dumb arrogance of a brain trying to understand not only itself but its place in the not brain part of the world.
You see to me all things are mental. Is this correct? I seem to be so sure of it. Because I only know what I know with my brain. But the brain is not mental. The brain itself is a thing. So I am a place where things become aware of themselves. If it seems that I am confused – well I am. Totally.
Anyway, moving on, this place where things become aware of themselves is called a self. Is this right? A self is a process that bridges thoughts and things. It would be nice if it were so. I will proceed as if it were so until it becomes clear that it is not.
But I need a self to do even more than this. I need a self that can stand outside of space and time. So that it can think space and time into being. Surely one needs more than an omelette in order to make an omelette.
And so. Quickly before the sun sets. I want to bring in the notion of narrative. Why, you may ask. Well it’s in the title and I may well be confused but never, ever, coy.
A self has to tell the story of itself to itself in order to persist through space and time. This storytelling binds the ever shifting patterns of states of being into a world that can stand proud against the backdrop of noise, chaos, unconsciousness.
Or not stand proud. Or not stand. But persist. Persist for long enough to become a thing.
Narrative allows selves to thingify undiluted everywhere and wheness.
So that’s it then. And I still have time to grab the camera and rush down to the rocks to steal another sunset.