Saturday, September 26, 2009

Einstein's Better Half

Not too long ago various idiots savant pondered whether Einstein might have stolen his ideas from his wife. I have proof that he couldn't have. As I tell my friends who haven't seen me for a while; "I've aged well, I have the body of a god (Buddha) in the mind of a lunatic (yours if you believe it)". See, it depends what you mean by better half, and in whose mind ideas might reside.

I was wonderfully gratified today to learn that Bill Clinton secretly cared more for his daughter than for the obligations of world leadership. You can go ahead and contrast that with GWB if you'd like, including the part about sexual transgressions. Some sins are just more serious than others, George, and just because you got in with the wrong crowd doesn't let you off the hook.

So, being a man, of course Einstein forgot to complete his wonderful insight. The part he got for us - the scientific discovery which entailed no moral reasoning on his part since it was and still is just wondrously true for whoever happens to think about it - is the part that made the bomb possible.

The better half - the part which now it might already be too late to reveal, and for that I can only apologize that I'm not a woman - is that he should have and could have noticed that once you've pinned the speed of light, you've also turned accident right on its head.

Things which aren't connected perceptually, which we now understand to involve the exchange of force-defining sub-atomic particles limited in their exchange by the speed of light, are "only" connected conceptually, which means, by definition, in some "mind".

Things with some future connection which can't be established by a chain of causation are - now this is obvious to the point of banality - connectible only by accident. Now I'm making shit up here, but if you really think about it you'll see that it's true - this accident when it's anticipated by some mind can be called an emotional connection, a wanting, a gap to be fulfilled. OK, there's the part you're going to choke on, but think about it now.

You make something happen you want to happen, and you work like hell to avoid the things you're terrified of. I'm not so very sure at all about free will and prestigipredestination, but honestly I could care less. It sure feels as though I'm the decider some of the time.

Now it's easy enough to claim no connection at all when accidents happen, but looking backward, you might simply say that the connection was emotionally prefigured, prior to its perceptual realization. It can be lots of fun to look around at the subconscious, but I'm going way farther than that. I know, I'm messing with sacred words we think we understand here, but give me a little chance . . . I mean that literally, of course! At the extreme, fate and the subconscious are identical, as any good psychotherapist will have to agree.

Emotion is a direction toward, say, something bound by love, and away, perhaps, when that direction is impelled by hatred, and it exists only in the absence of causal proof. Once contact is made, well, then you have causation.

The really cool part is that all reality is always an interplay among and between these aspects, so we needn't bother very much at all with the silly chicken and egg question of which came first, mind or matter. Because it doesn't, well, really matter. Both are fundamental, fundamentalists be damned!

But there is a reductive necessity, in any language which is going to make any sense, for concept, percept, mind and particle, motion and emotion. Otherwise, well, what's a wavicle to consist in, for goodness sake? Paradox (well, yes as a matter of fact, but Žižek can be really tough to read)!? There's no ether, there is simultaneous "action" at a distance when a de-Broglie wave is collapsed by an act of perception, but what's happened, strictly speaking, is conceptual, and is tough to prove by simultaneous measurement (not so tough to prove by other more clever types of measurement).

So the strong anthropic principle, the Goldilocks principle which posits that of course the cosmos beats all the wildest lottery odds to suit us perfectly [because we wouldn't be here if it didn't] can be restated to say that we were wanted. Absolutely nothing else changes. Or everything does. It's only semantics after all.

Now, I've got to go comfort my daughter whose boyfriend is too obtuse to see her charm anymore. Now that their freshman college year has begun, I'm sure he doesn't want to be constrained in what turns his head. If I were a woman, I'd tear him to shreds, but well, I kind of like the guy, so he has no worries from me, and for Pete's sake they're way too young to get serious. Even at my age promises are hard to keep.

All's fair in love and war, but pity the fool who hurts my kids. Now that right there is nuclear power. If only we could harness that stuff, you know, like that toddler energy we all comment about.

Oh, wait, we can!!! We can do the right thing, avoid the haters, steer clear of the magical thinkers, stop thinking in algorithms, religious or scientific, and learn to behave decently, in civilized fashion, with feelings expressed politely. Not a bad idea, if I do say so myself.

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