Modernity and Perspectivity

As an undergraduate at university, my chief area of interest was the history of propaganda. I was particularly interested in how propaganda affected, or interfered with, consciousness and perception such that “false consciousness” (ie delusion) could become a social problem.

Even after I graduated, I continued in my studies of propaganda. Around 1999, though, I began to feel I had taken my studies about as far as I could and felt I wasn’t making any further progress in my understanding. I came to the conclusion that I needed to expand my horizons and deepen my understanding of the matter by situating the phenomenon of propaganda, as a technology of social and psychological manipulation and control, within the broader historical context of the history and philosophy of science and technology. So, in 2000, I returned to university to further my studies in the history and philosophy of science and technology as these pertained to culture and consciousness.

One day, while I was trundling through abstracts and indexes in the university library looking for some arcane bit of information I took note of how many academic citations made reference to taking a “perspective” on this or a “perspective” on that. There were perhaps hundreds of citations that included the word “perspective” in their titles. It was then that the fateful question occurred to me: “what does it mean to have a perspective?” and whether this was an absolutely necessary requirement of good methodology.

Of course, I knew that perspectivity had been an innovation of the European Renaissance, but it now struck me as odd, as I was purusing the abstracts, that what was an aesthetic innovation in art could be transposed to a methodology and to a more general approach to interpreting reality and a worldview. I felt that there was something really important here that had been largely overlooked. Much to the chagrin, and even hostility, of some of my professors, I dove into the subject of perspective. I had become quite certain that the key to understanding the history and philosophy of modern science and technology lay in this innovation of the Renaissance artists — perspectivity, the rational organisation of spaces in three-dimensions. What I thought of then as an insight was met with either incomprehension or complete hostility. In fact, I was told to let go of the whole matter or face nasty consequences. It was a reaction that I hadn’t anticipated. I was quite taken aback by it but also determined to pursue that research despite the nasty consequences. Eventually, matters got so bad that I just quite the programme and left the university.

During this whole kerfuffle, though, I was gathering more and more evidence for my initial intuition about the connection between the aesthetics of perspectivism and subsequent developments in the history and philosophy of science and technology (whether that would eventually connect with my studies of propaganda was still undetermined). But I was up against some pretty anachronistic dualistic thinking in terms of the “two cultures” — liberal arts and hard sciences. Art was art (and irrational and totally subjective) and science was science (and completely rational and totally objective) and never the twain shall meet, as it were. The hostility was understandable in those terms. It was academic and faculty “identity politics”.

And since it became a matter of a double-bind — conform or face the nasty consequences — I preferred to get out. I left.

Bit by bit, though, I kept filling in the “missing links” between the invention of perspective and the Scientific Revolution, and the gradual diffusion of perspectivity and perspectivising perception through the general population as the very meaning of “the modern outlook”. If I were to return to university today, I would be much better armed with evidence and argument than I was then, when I was struggling to find the linkages (that I knew were there somewhere) between Giotto’s first fumbling attempts at perspectivity in the 13th century through to Copernicus, Galileo, and Rene Descartes.

Some historians of science, I discovered, had sensed a tacit connection between Renaissance aesthetics and the subsequent Scientific Revolution. Thomas Kuhn, in his biography of Copernicus, remarked in passing that he couldn’t see how Copernicus could have come up with his heliocentric theory without some knowledge of perspective. Historian George Santayana mused over the influence of the Renaissance draughtsman Albrecht Dűrer (1471 – 1528) on subsequent developments in science and technology. It was after I had already left the university that I also discovered that Galileo himself had once applied to teach perspective at the Florentine Academy (he was rejected). That was one of the “missing links” I had needed to seal the connection between perspectivism and the history of science and technology. Science historian Margaret Wertheim’s The Pearly Gates of Cyberspace also all-too briefly touched on the importance of perspectivism for the development of the objective attitude and the scientific intellectual organisation of space. As fate would have it, ironically, she was interviewed about that on the CBC the very day I walked out on the university. It was an odd coincidence. But listening to Wertheim, a thrill went up and down my spine. I felt vindicated. I recall being quite euphoric about that.

Discovering Jean Gebser’s The Ever-Present Origin, and his description therein of the “perspective structure of consciousness” (or what he also calls “the mental-rational structure”) was one of the great discoveries of my life, though. So lucid. So clear. Everything that I had puzzled over about the connection between perspective and the history science and technology (and the shape of modern consciousness) now made perfect sense, except for one thing. I still didn’t know how the perspective attitude or mode of consciousness diffused through the general culture and became “the common sense” or synonymous with the idea of “Western Man”.

Crane Brinton had once stated that the chief idea of modernity and the meaning of the “Modern Era” itself was “the invention of a system for creating systems”. It was Gebser who revealed, though, that the master system of which Brinton spoke was actually perspectivism — the rational organisation of space (and time) in three-dimensions. Not only did perspectivism teach the mind the “point-of-view” and the objective attitude (via psychological distancing or “distantiation”) but it also made precise technical blueprints possible (hence, also, Dűrer’s significance for Santayana). The master system — that which made the mental-rational consciousness possible at all — was perspective.

My own research while at university had highlighted the role of Leon Batista Alberti (1404 – 1472). Alberti stood out for me because he was the first to really formulate the mathematics of perspectivism, the axioms of perspective construction — the rational organisation of space and spaces in terms of ratios. Da Vinci, as noted by Gebser, simply improved on Alberti’s innovations. And here we come to another riddle and “missing link” that has been resolved for me in, of all places, Daniel Bell’s The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism.

It’s in the Foreword to the book — a true “Eureka!” moment for me — that Bell, citing the work of German economist Werner Sombart, mentions also the significance of Alberti in the subsequent development  and values of the emerging “middle class” or “bourgeois civilisation”,

“Sombart located the main areas of capitalist undertaking not in the Protestant countries, such as Holland, England, or the United States, but in the Florentine world, and he argued that the same kind of prudential bourgeois maxims associated with Benjamin Franklin (who in personal life was a bon viveur) could be found several hundred years earlier in the writings of Leon Batista Alberti, whose book Del governo della famiglia was a classic in its time, and whose views of middle-class virtues, the proper coordination of actions and the profitable employment of time, were adopted by large numbers of bourgeois entrepreneurs and commercants in Italy and France.” (p. xix)

This struck me like a thunderbolt, for I was not aware that Alberti had been also the “Miss Manners” of his day, and I did not know of Del governo della famiglia, or its widespread popularity — that Alberti had taken the principles of perspectivism — the rationalisation of space and time — and had extended that into a social ethos!

Good Heavens! What a revelation that was! There was the “diffusion” I was looking for, and Bell was essentially saying here, too, that “bourgeois civilisation” and capitalism is, itself also, a perspectivist construct, also conditioned by perspectivism!

Does this signal, then, that the “eclipse of distance” that so concerns Daniel Bell, a distancing which has its roots in perspectivism and in Alberti’s social ethos based upon perspectivism, also has implications for the shrinkage of the middle class and for the meaning of “post-modernity”? It’s pretty clear, too, that Bell’s concerns with this eclipse of distance (social and psychological, if not also geographical) corresponds to Gebser’s diagnosis of the breakdown of the perspectival or mental-rational consciousness.

One riddle solved, yet another, even bigger riddle arises. And that is, what is the meaning of “the eclipse of distance”, at least for Bell who finds it disorienting, and how is this related to Gebser’s breakdown or collapse of the mental-rational, and for the prospects for capitalism and the middle-class and liberal democracies?

Those are very big questions.


26 responses to “Modernity and Perspectivity”

  1. Scott Preston says :

    Well… I did find an excerpt from Alberti’s Del governo della famiglia online. Haven’t yet read through the whole thing, but I certainly will, with this question in mind. How did Alberti translate his perspectivism — his rationalisation of spaces and times — into a social value system and social ethos for the emerging bourgeoisie?

  2. Leo says :

    Eclipse: an obscuring of the light from one celestial body by the passage of another between it and the observer or between it and its source of illumination

    What is it that is obscuring Bell’s perspectival vision? Does he elaborate on the metaphor in his book?

    • Scott Preston says :

      I haven’t yet discovered by Bell refers to it as an “eclipse”, except in relation to his critique of what he considers “anti-cognitive”, or “anti-rational” tendencies in “modernism” (the art movement). So, I’m thinking that by “eclipse” he’s meaning an eclipse of the light of consciousness, as he understands this.

      And as he understands this, it is perspective consciousness and its rational ordering of spaces and times. So far, that much is clear about his meaning, and that’s also tied into his cultural conservatism. I’m confident, though, that by “consciousness” he understands only the mental-rational/perspectival mode, and this is what he thinks of as being “eclipsed” or darkened.

      I imagine Bell will articulate more precisely what he means by “eclipse of distance” as I work my way through his book.

    • Scott Preston says :

      After sleeping on it last night, I think I have an answer for you this morning, Leo, about what Bell understands by “eclipse of distance”. And it’s an odd one.

      The word “perspective” actually means “seeing through”, connected in that sense with “perpiscuity” (transparency). In effect, then, by “perspective” early Renaissance artists used a term borrowed from optics, and the “seeing through” meant, in some fashion, a seeing through space itself, penetrating into depth rather than surface. It meant “seeing through” the two-dimensional into the third dimension, or what Bell calls “the interior distance” in a painting, for example.

      The “eclipse of distance” means, for Bell, also the loss of profundity in that sense, for him anyway. This “interior distance” (of perspective illusionism) disappears from modern art, which he thinks of as being all surface effect without depth of perception represented in perspectivism.

      This is very odd, because Gebser sees it quite differently, especially in Picasso, who he highlights as an example of “transparency”, or rather “perpiscuity” (which would be, in effect, the real meaning of “perspectivity” as “seeing through”). Picasso paints objects as if he were seeing through the object itself in its full transparency. What is “hidden” (or “behind”) is brought to the foreground.

      Gebser calls this holistic perception “aperspectival”. (not unperspectival) or authentic perspectivity as perpiscuity — a genuine “seeing through” or “transparency” — not just seeing through space, but also into the hidden dimension which is eclipsed by the foreground effect, ie, what is also “behind” or “before” the foreground.

      In post-modern jargon, that would be the simultaneity of text and context, corresponding to foreground and background effect in visual arts, which is, in some respects, the same as “coincidentia oppositorum”. The hidden or invisible is made “transparent” to perception (perpiscuity).

      In Picasso, the object ceases to be opaque, and becomes “transparent”. In Renaissance perspectivism, the artist peers into the distance or into the depths, but is drawn up short by the opacity of the object (ie, what lies behind is invisible or hidden or “occult”). Insight is attenuated or truncated. True perspectivity, for Gebser, is also perspicuity (transparency), ie, real insight, not just seeing through space, but through (“behind”, “before”, or “beneath”) the object itself.

      This is what fascinated Gebser about Picasso, and what he refers to as “the transparency of the world”, and which constitutes an attempt at “holistic” or “integral” perception.

      So, this is really odd. Bell only sees the “eclipse of distance” and modernist art as all surface effect or abstraction or unnatural. Gebser sees, rather, the fact that what is hidden in the depths as being foregrounded (“concretion”) and in that sense, yes, “distance” disappears because it now becomes transparent. This is what Gebser calls “aperspectival”. It’s quite a paradox.

      • Leo says :

        Hi Scott, thanks for that, very interesting! I’ve also recently been revisiting EPO with reference to transparency and diaphaneity, and your post has stimulated some additional thoughts re how they might be expressed in visual vs. linguistic modes. I’ll write more when I have more time and have clarified my thoughts further.

  3. Scott Preston says :

    This is something I’m probably going to post about in the near future in relation to Bell’s “eclipse of distance” but I thought I would offer it up here, first, as an interesting pattern.

    Augustine recorded, once, his shock and surprise upon entering a room and finding his teacher reading SILENTLY to himself. Apparently, such things weren’t done, then. To read was to read aloud.

    But what the anecdote illustrates is the new sense of inwardness, and intensification of inwardness brought by the Christian revelation. And you still see that sense of inwardness still in Petrarch’s account of his ascent of Mt. Ventoux (as Gebser recalls it too). He turns away from the vista of expansive space back into his soul. (This will only make sense, I suppose, to those who have read the first part of Gebser’s Ever-Present Origin where Gebser discusses Petrarch’s ascent of Mt Ventoux and his reactions to that).

    Yet, what we find in the Renaissance and with perspectivism, is the turn outwards, and an intensification of interest in the external world, especially in perspectivisation, and in the rational organisation of space (and time).

    Now, again, what you find in “post-modernity” is another inward turning. This is what Bell means, I think, by “the eclipse of distance” and, instead, the quest for “wholeness” or “self-realisation” or “self-fulfillment” — that the culture has become fundamentally at odds with the techno-economic realm, which is the essential contradiction, for him, of the present.

    You see the rhythm of history here? It’s also what Gebser describes in terms of inhalation and exhalation. And so, you could say, too, that the long waves of history very much resembles Holling’s Adaptive Cycle for this cycle, too, does resemble inhalation and exhalation.

    But you could also map that to Rosenstock-Huessy’s “cross of reality” also, and his description of the shifts between subjective and objective in spaces, or “trajective” and “prejective” (past and future orientations) in time.

  4. Scott Preston says :

    Here’s an interesting article in today’s Guardian about hunter-gatherer societies and which questions the value of “progress”, as we understand this anyway. But what’s more interesting about this is the author’s questioning of whether we can reclaim the values of equality and participation characteristic of hunter-gather societies, and that is a question pertinent to the notion of “integral consciousness”

    This is especially pertinent in the context of what some are also calling “re-tribalisation”, corresponding, somewhat, to Gebser’s “magical” structure of consciousness also. One doesn’t want to over-idealise or over-romanticise tribal life and hunter-gatherer society. It had its own deficiencies.

    The article, though, does highlight widespread doubts about the value of “progress”, and, in that sense, also recalls Daniel Bell’s remarks about the revival of a sense of “limits”. — limits to growth, limits to self-indulgence, limits to consumption, limits to “work”, etc, and how you would actually effect that in the context of capitalist society and culture, or whether it is desirable or feasible to do so.

    • Dwig says :

      The above comment provides a nice hook to introduce a site devoted to a systematic comparison of civilization with so-called primitive societies. A good place to start is an essay by Richard Heinberg, The Primitivist Critique of Civilization. I think it could be read as a possible way to achieve the integral consciousness through an integration of the “primitive” and “civilized” lifeways.

      Heinberg’s article is one of a number of interesting explorations of primitivism.

  5. Scott Preston says :

    Stiglitz prefers the Nordic Solution to the problems of globalisation and its discontents

    There’s quite a bit of talk about “the Nordic Model”

    I’ve not yet given it much attention.

    • InfiniteWarrior says :

      There’s quite a bit of talk about “the Nordic Model…”

      …which ignores the rather pressing problems with which Nordic countries, e.g. Norway and Sweden, currently find themselves wrestling — the same problems as all other members of the International community.

      It’s difficult not to pay attention to it in the US as the Nordic Model is continually cited by Hedges, Sanders and others as the model for the US to follow given the quality and standard of living enjoyed by the populations of Nordic countries since their peoples came together to avert the rise of fascism, but these countries are currently embroiled in the exact same brand of the radicalization of politics that has seized the rest of the globe.

    • Risto says :

      Hi Scott et al!

      Thought I should share couple of thoughts about Nordic welfare model, since I live here. (BTW we celebrate today our 100th birthday as independent nation, so national questions are on my mind anyway.)

      It’s true that free education and strong welfare net makes living here feel more secured than I could imagine in lots of other places. But like IW said Finland and other Nordic countries are not immune to down sides of globalisation and capitalism.

      I think that one large reason for the development of Nordic Model, which the Wikipedia article doesn’t mention, has been the dominant position of Lutheran church in Nordic countries. Strong position of church has enabled people to share common value base. So basically Nordic social democracy is secularised version of the Lutheran creed. Also Nordic countries have had very homogenic population.

      When the position of religion and church loses it’s ground in people’s thinking and population becomes increasingly heterogenic, it becomes harder to maintain the social democratic welfare model alive and running. There are signs that this is happening here.

      I think the right wing thinking, here in Finland at least, rises from people’s fear of losing gained advantages. Finland was basically a developing country long to the 20th century. It’s easier to blame immigrants for social problems than faceless capitalism.

      • Scott Preston says :

        Yes, thanks. It’s an interesting connection. I’m still reading through Daniel Bell’s The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism, and he is much impressed by Weber’s The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism.

        But there was this other side to the Protestant Ethic called “The Social Gospel” which hardly ever seems to get much attention. My own province of Saskatchewan turned to the Social Gospel in 1944 (the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation), the first awowedly socialist government in North America. And it was led by a charismatic Baptist minister named Tommy Douglas — still revered as an historic figure in Canada. Bernie Sanders in the US does remind me in some ways of Douglas.

        The Social Gospel preceded Marx, who simply seized on it and attempted to make it “scientific” despite its theological origins and inspirations. But utilitarianism associated with Bentham and capitalism also originally started life as a theological doctrine, too. In fact, as I’ve noted earlier in The Chrysalis, all ideology originally began life as theology, even if it tries to hide or disguise those roots.

        (Bentham, by the way, was the fist to declare “there is no such thing as Community”. Thatcher was a Benthamite. Ironically, too, Bentham was the inventor of the “panopticon”, the first mass surveillance technology that Orwell adopted for his 1984).

        So, part of the modern condition, and “modernity” itself, is the persistence of Reformation and Counter-Reformation (revolution and reaction). Those root sectarian tensions have never really been resolved. Sectarians simply became partisans, and their theological justifications and orientations became secular ideologies.

        So, even if the Protestant ethic favoured capitalism, it wasn’t the whole story.

        Bell’s interest in The Cultural Contradictions is principally what happens to capitalism when the Protestant ethic no longer effectively provides its justifications (subsequent to Nietzsche’s “death of God”).

        In the US, of course, there is still a strong fundamentalist component that has its historical roots in the Reformation, so that when the CEO of Goldman Sachs, Lloyd Blankfein, states that he is “doing God’s work” (the old Protestant justification for capital accumulation) many find that completely uncontroversial.

        What that exemplifies is, I think, that large social groups within one society are living within different time horizons — some may be called “pre-modern”, some “modern”, some “post-modern” or some “meta-modern” (or “trans-modern”). That certainly seems to me part of the present “chaos”..


        • Leo says :

          What do you mean by meta or trans-modern here? Are you referring to integral / trans-personal, or the trans-humanists?

          • Scott Preston says :

            “Metamodernism” has a formal definition, described by Wikipedia


            In some respects, Rosenstock-Huessy’s “metanoia” and “metanomics of society” are also a form of metamodernism, “meta” having the connotation of “beyond” moreso than “after”.

            “Transmodernism” might be thought of as also the same as “metamodernism”. The term “transmodernism” is also found among some Islamic intellectuals, and seemingly to describe integralism or global interconnectivity, and how to situation Islam within that global community. (Ziauddin Sardar in “Desperately Seeking Paradise”, or, in Western terms, “utopia”).

            I use the term “transhuman” also, but not in the sense of “post-human” as is the contemporary meaning, but in Nietzsche’s meaning — the self-transcended human — something beyond the “normal”, which is a disintegrate state. I have in mind here Aurobindo’s “supramental consciousness” in that sense or Gebser’s “diaphanous” consciousness (aperspectival consciousness) or Rosenstock-Huessy’s “metanoia” (or “New Mind”) also.

        • Risto says :

          The flip side of the coin concerning Lutheranism and Reformation is the Left Brain dominant thinking.

          Large part of post-WW2 growth in Finland came from exploiting the forests. The gap between global civilization and local rural or maybe even hunter-gatherer style way of living is very narrow in Finland. My grandfather on my father’s side was the first to get higher education from my line of ancestors. Before that they wete farmers in Central Finland as far as records go. My father’s cousin still runs the family farm.

          I think the transmodern question is largely how to combine the civilized mind to healthy relatioship with Nature. Gladly there is growing interest in Finnish lutheran church to ecological questions which may be indicator of larger shift in awareness.

      • InfiniteWarrior says :

        It’s easier to blame immigrants for social problems than faceless capitalism.

        This is one of the things that has me completely buffaloed these days, especially about Trump supporters.

        In the US, the vast majority of Trump supporters (by my very unscientific estimations) do not blame immigrants for our troubles at all, likely because they’re well aware of their own ancestry — indigenous and otherwise. Whereas their Clintonite counterparts blame corporations (and — notably — not the anonymous diffusion of consciousness corporate culture inherently promotes), these Trump supporters blame the federal government exclusively, apparently simply not recognizing the wholesale worship among our supposed “leadership” of the “free market” and its “invisible hand.” They can’t be told, of course, that Trump himself represents the sealing of the deal of the corporate coup that sought to overthrow all the world’s governments from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution (and obviously succeeded). I suppose that’s something we all have to glean for ourselves.

        At any rate, this is why I don’t blame anyone among the public for our ills. It’s our idiotic “leadership” that must fall in line with our far-more-“integral”-than-we-might-think will.

        • Risto says :

          Yes, it’s no use to play the blame game. We’re in this together, no matter where we live or what we think.

  6. Charles says :

    Scott, The writing of E.M. Adams is insightful. He writes about the change from a humanistic paradigm to a what he calls a descriptive/explanatory conceptual system paradigm. A change of perspective. His writing is clear.

    • Scott Preston says :

      Good review, Charles, of that book The Meaning of Things. Makes me want to read it

      • Charles says :

        Scott, thanks. It a fascinating book. Unfortunately, I misplaced that book years ago (or gave the book to someone) and I don’t want to get another copy. This library is filled with books similar to that one. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi went on to write books on Flow and similar ideas. I could have qouted Emerson “Things are in the saddle and ride mankind” Another similar book from that time is The Poverty of Affluence – Paul L. Wachtel

  7. Scott Preston says :

    Here is another great irony, perverse outcome, and contradiction.

    Seems the information technologies designed to boost productivity are having the exact opposite outcome

  8. Abdulmunem Othman says :

    Last night I was reading Antonio Dias post titled , Reams. How to position, in which he made a reference to your post. Dias is unhappy with the visual perspective that dominate our knowledge scene, the single vision. He talked about the enquiry inlets to the field of knowledge mentioning the what , thewho and the how in both its quality dimension and quantity dimension. That reminds me of the ten inlets Ibn Arabi spoke about, the above three, and the why, the time,the space the effector and the effected the essence and the appearance, and emphasizing the necessity for utilizing both our external perceptual faculties and our inner faculties. Our tragedy resides not only in the exclusion of our inner faculties, specially the heart but highlighting some of our external perception tools specially the eyes on the expense of the complete negligence of the ears. The why and the essence are no longer addressed because our thinkers think there is no need for such myth and primitive concepts. Even they are no longer interested in the exploration of the higher realm of meaning, the god of meaning ,truth, justice and purpose the one who has put all these faculties in us and has even given us the guidance of how to use and enhance them. It is a crisis of misuse where language is no longer is used for corrective purposes but for the dissemination of fake news and disinformation no wonder McLuhan expected the war of information. It is the self behind the language. Talk is easy but living the talk is the problem, The Six values of the Nordic new party are good and the crises they want to address are also good but we have to wait and see. it is eclipse of human understanding not of distance or depth. It is accumulation of information that does bot know how to enter the house of wisdom. Wisdom is a chain on knowledge to save the humans from sinking in the endless sea of the words of knowledge. Some time I get confused in front of the avalanche of the theories, ideas, solutions submitted to address our crises. It is the violation of the simple divine code of values and the arrogant of those who want to play the role of god are behind the multifarious crises we are facing and will continue to face, if we do not change the direction and the arrogant mentality behind the scene. The mentality of money accumulation and gluttonous consumption. The mentality that has closed the doors of honest devotion and sincere meditation in the way of the serving the others.

    • InfiniteWarrior says :

      Our tragedy resides not only in the exclusion of our inner faculties, specially the heart but highlighting some of our external perception tools specially the eyes at the expense of the complete negligence of the ears.

      Thank you. Thank you. Thank you — from the bottom of my heart — for that. I attribute this to a civilizational neglect throughout history of the “Sacred Feminine,” which I associate with hearing and most often refer to as “Cosmos,” along with the Sacred Masculine, with a strong emphasis on the musical sense of harmony.

      Obviously, the “Sacred Masculine” is associated with “sight” (and masculine archetypes) and we human beings tend to possess an inherent tendency toward one or the other, which is not necessarily confined to physical gender or supposed, societal “roles.” Such tendencies are part and parcel of our true natures from birth, not “learned,” and it is the Sacred Feminine that I believe Susan Blackie was actually describing and highlighting in her post on the subjects of “resistance” and “myth.”

      This has been much on my mind for many years. What is myth but story-telling and oral transmission of knowledge and wisdom? I am increasingly concerned about calls to completely abandon the vehicles of stories and story-telling in favor of one or another kind of pure, unadulterated, “sight-“and-nothing-but-sight-based logic and ways of thinking, being and doing.

      it is eclipse of human understanding not of distance or depth.

      I agree 100%. Gebser’s insights regarding perspectivism during the Renaissance and beyond are impressive, but are still only a fraction of the whole story. As far as I can tell, there has never been a time in a human history when harmony among us wasn’t being “eclipsed” by dissonance, war and power-or-profit-or-both mongering, and I’ve yet to hear any explanation for that other than pure, unadulterated hubris. Let’s not forget that, while Narcissus was apparently the historically-proclaimed star of the Greek myth of the same name, there was a “secondary” character who also played a part in it and was, “herself,” named in the title: Echo.

      Echo! {Echo…. Echo….}

      Name the “social media platform” anywhere and I will describe it back to you as naught but an echo chamber.

  9. Abdulmunem Othman says :

    I can not IW but return my thanks doubled from the same in-depth source.

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