Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The cryptography of being, part II — some novel thoughts about consciousness, essence, and personality

Image from the Voynich manuscript

 As we encounter our questions about our own being, we do it in the midst of our own momentum, our own forward trajectory, which is a direction through time and space. In other words, we live; and this is a current that carries us forward in a wave of Being.

At the same time, we attempt to know who we are; and in this sense, we wish to know, to consciously cognate, that we are a particle of His Endlessness, a tiny but active manifestation of God Himself.

 The difficulty is that we become lost in the wave of Being, of living; we forget ourselves, we forget, in the midst of the activity that direction and speed impart, our own essential nature. As Gurdjieff put it, we become identified; our identity is absorbed by the wave of our lives. And this is exactly how it's described in uncertainty theory; as we decrypt the information about our forward movement, we encrypt the information about our nature. The opposite is also true. One can thereby either become a master of the world, of outwardness in forward motion; or a master of the inner world, a saint. The problem is that the master of the outward is a puppet of circumstances; and the master of the inward suffers from terminal myopia. A balance is necessary.

This idea of encryption relates to organization, form, and order. Information, as it acquires order that allows understanding, decreases its entropy; that is, it becomes more predictable and makes more sense. Understanding this way,  a decreased entropy of personality — greater understanding of personality — takes place only at the expense of increasing entropy in essence. This is because one, inevitably, steals from the other. Only consciousness, an effort to stand between both of these forces, can balance them so that information flows in from either side, allowing a delicate ballet of intelligence that draws from both sides.

The analogy is, I will admit, rough and conceptual; yet I think that we are able, within the context of our life, to see this in action — it is one of the capacities of our intelligence brings us. We have a wish to decrypt both of these entities, both of these sides of ourselves; and yet, according to natural law, it is more or less impossible. When we attempt to be aware of ourselves, and to live, we attempt the impossible; and this reminds me of the many times I have looked out at life in the world and realize that everything about it is, in essence, impossible. All of the things that surround us derive from this interaction between strange and opposing forces that encode and encrypt truth in innumerable aspects; even as we unravel one truth and discern the nature of its string, another one is tangling itself into a ball.

There will be some further thoughts on this tomorrow in the third installment on this subject.


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