Posts Tagged ‘reality’

From the Editor’s Perch

October 3, 2014
I Promise to Keep All Speculation Under 25 MPH

I Promise to Keep All Speculation Under 25 MPH

Rampant Speculations

 

Perhaps Poets describe this best, because they seem to rock the mental boat more often than most.  But it seems we live upon a raft of assumptions floating upon a reality that is often quite fluid.

 

At one time we assumed the earth was flat and that the sun passed overhead of us and that the Gods and Angels would from time to time visit.   Now we assume the earth is round, that we orbit around the sun, and have our suspicions that those odd creatures which visit us from time to time might be aliens, or government agents or most likely the hobgoblin of susceptible minds.  Our assumptions about the Creation have changed.  Assumptions about our place in the Universe has changed.  Enter quantum mechanics and our assumptions about physical laws have changed.  But as to these odd manifestations who visit us; largely only the names have changed.

 

In John A Keel’s book, The Mothman Prophecies, which is largely an examination of paranormal experiences in and around West Virginia in the early 60s, he points out the various assumptions concerning reported paranormal experiences.  He details the parallels in descriptions of meetings with Angels, Demons, Gods, Aliens and Men in Black, down through the ages and across cultures.  And he speculates that it makes more sense to think that these representatives of another world might have happened through what he imagines as portals to another dimension than as aliens who have travelled light years through space.  He speculates that this might explain their presence in tales of the obscure down through history.  That it might explain their purported foreknowledge of events coupled with a rather bumbling understanding of our ways.

 

In effect he is speculating that it makes more sense to attribute events to imperfections in the fabric delimiting one dimension from another, than to aliens with such supernatural intelligence as to travel light years from their homes and then to appear clumsy, inept, incommunicative and without a discernible purpose when they finally arrive.  They appear more to want to study us, than to harm us.  Which is what one might expect of some creature who has found themselves suddenly adrift in a strange world.

 

After all, there is hardly anything more common to our lives’ experience than imperfections.  Imperfections and deterioration seem to be the natural nature and course of events.  What Keel seems to be suggesting is that there might also be imperfections in the natural laws confining one Universe from Another.

 

And if we have imperfections in natural laws, might this most likely be due to deterioration.  After all, life’s battle is largely one against the forces of deterioration.  So why should Platonic Ideals not be victims of wear and tear like everything else in the Universe?  For example, has the force of gravity always been thus – or is it a remnant of a much more coherent and enveloping (shiny and newer!) physical law?

 

We look back and theorize what must have been and what must have occurred to create what we have now.  But isn’t that assuming the same natural laws?  What if the past were created under physical laws which may have functioned quite differently prior to their deterioration.  If we understood what those laws might have been, might the historical record make more sense, or arrange itself quite differently?  Is there a physical law we might hypothesize to explain concordances which currently appear random?  What might be the next physical law to deteriorate?  Can we find evidence of the deterioration of physical laws currently, either nearby or in deep space?   What would happen to a traveler who has passed into a region where a further deterioration of a physical law has occurred?  Would their ship be rendered useless?  Would they die?  Would they have strange powers?  Would it create a hell of a problem, or just a tiny one – say, if they kept their speed down below 25 mph?

 

We make a lot of assumptions when we peer into the past.  And then we extend those same assumptions into the future.  Is anything else in Nature so confined by the present as our mental capabilities?  It doesn’t seem so.

Photo by Tin Tin Nelson

From the Editor’s Perch

March 18, 2011
Ur Editor

“Over thirty years ago I worked for a local moving outfit where most of the endless days were spent loading or unloading vans at one of the many loading docks.  One of my fellow workers, Dale, was a huge Italian, who grew up in Hell’s Kitchen.  He would skip on his toes across the warehouse floor – like one of those dancing hippos in Disney’s Fantasia – flicking jabs, to amuse himself on slow days, while he went from here to there collecting bits of stray string or torn sections of cardboard in order to appear busy.  He was tall and powerfully built with olive-skin, oily black hair, large fleshy features, liver lips and an enormous beer belly – so enormous in fact, that in order to stay upright he had to lean backwards while skipping forward.  He was a former ‘deep-water sailor’ who harbored in Belltown and drank with his cronies at the Two Bells.  He was a binge drinker who now and then just wouldn’t show up for a while.

But when Dale was there, if he were in a talkative mood, he share with us the ‘adventures of the sea’: about sailors who’d strap bras to their back while out at sea to make a little extra money, and about visiting his retired pals who spent their days keeping track of the whores on First Avenue with red pins stuck in a large map of downtown Seattle – as if conducting military maneuvers.  Dale generally stayed above any argument that would break out from time to time in the coffee room.  But when he did voice an opinion, it was always the same one:  “The question is,” he would say with a chuckle as he lifted his meaty forefinger to make his point: “are you da Fucker, orderda da Fuckee?”  And I had to admit, Dale’s comment almost always hit upon the crux of whatever was bothering those guys.  His gnome-like silence notwithstanding, this ‘one-thought’ intelligence-of-his was downright uncanny, in fact.

One boring winter afternoon I asked Dale how his Christmas had gone.  He had been looking forward to spending the holiday with a woman and her young son in a cheap motel room along Aurora Avenue North.  I assumed she was probably a hooker who came with the room.  “Not so good,” he said.  “We got in an argument and I ended up throwing the tree and the turkey out the back door.”  In retrospect, the dark humor of it seemed to be its saving grace.  I had the feeling Dale was perplexed, and more profoundly depressed than he could admit. There was something in the nuance of a relationship which seemed to trip him up.  Nevertheless, he seemed to admire the dark humor of it – of those fragile Christmas tree ornaments hitting the asphalt with a pop!.  It was the kind of world he might have designed, himself.

Over the years, I’ve encountered numerous bright people who’ve tried to explain to me again and again the reality of the same situations Dale could have summarized with greater and more accurate ease, in a phrase.  I guess they repeat themselves again and again because they think I don’t get it; I can’t face it; I’m poorly read; I can’t understand it; I’m ignorant; I’m weak; I’m a waffler…    I miss Dale.  I think the reason we sort of liked each other was because we both grasp that their  ‘reality’ – just doesn’t work.  I could look at him and realize that he got the joke.

Photo by Scot Bastian

 


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