Monday, January 16, 2006

The Question Concerning Dots

Once there was a sea of disparate dots. Some dots were more beautiful than others. Some were more funny. Some were just wise. but it remained a sea of un-connected dots. Some of these bigger dots had an idea, eidos, and they came together and built an island where smaller dots could come and be revealed to other dots. So this island of the day after was born, brimming with pure potential, what Plato would call ekphanestaton, a poetical revealing.
It is ekphanestaton because the island embodied both poiesis and aletheia. Poiesis being the bringing forth of something into presence while aletheia means the revealing into the truth. This was made possible by technology, the word being Techne which in its oldest form referred not to machines and such, but simply the bringing forth of truth into the splendor of radiant appearing.

In Greek times, Techne was the fine arts, the fine arts is not a separate cultural sector as it is commonly perceived today, it was part of the process of society to bring forth truth into a veiled but splendid presence in which the veil itself is also visible. Poiesis and aletheia.
So in a then lawless sea, the bright dots came together and built an essence of techne which could bring forth other dots into presence and reveal other dots into truth. It is a freedom of the open because all revealing comes out into the open. It is the essence of freedom because what conceals is also in the open and opens into the light. It is freedom.

But there is a danger in poiesis and aletheia. Extreme danger because poiesis and aletheia relies on the framing by the pioneering dots. Because the dots themselves shoulder the island every day, every night, they stand always on the brink of a precipitous fall. And the extreme danger when one is so threatened, is to exalt dot-self to the posture of a lord.
And the essence of revealing is lost and freedom is lost because even as they reveal small dot after small dot, they only encounter themselves.

But where danger is, grows the saving power also.

Because before the island was built; in and of themselves, the dots already had the ability to poeisis and aletheia. Remember techne is a word which means the bringing forth and revealing into truth. Because as the danger is closer and closer, the saving power of the dots, in and of themselves, starts to shine brighter and the dots begin to question more and more (the realm of the poetical).
"And this questioning is the piety of thought."

Note : Totally adapted from Martin Heidegger's "The Question Concerning Technology".

Quote of the Day --
"But where danger is, grows the saving power also .... Poetically dwells man upon this earth" -- Friedrich Holderlin


Blogger Molly Meek said...

Dots are also commonly understood as stains (hence their prominence) and moles (who's that famous model with a sexy mole again?).

At the same time, the bull's eye is also a dot in people's eye. They want the bull's eye to get bigger, all the better for targeting.

3:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amidst this whole messy affair, your quiet voice is the fairest and most penetrating analysis. It is a pity that Tomorrow gets dragged through this and I think your entry (if of course I read it right) has been understanding of the onerous task of the editors too. This is poeisis and aletheia then? Keep it up.


10:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


9:31 PM  
Anonymous Zyl said...

The good fortunes of this world are light as feathers, yet none estimates them at their true value. The misfortunes of this life are weighty as the earth, yet none knows how to keep out of their reach. No more, no more, show off your virtue. Beware, beware, move cautiously on! O brambles, O brambles, wound not my steps! I pick my way about, hurt not my feet! (The Zhuang Zi)

12:25 PM  

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