Wednesday, March 5, 2014

PPM21 March 5, 2014 6:...

Today was a very special day, as I visited with the family of the great artist Jan Sawka, whose wife and daughter welcomed me into their home and showed me the genius of Jan's art, and the studio where he made it.  I am most grateful and look forward to the project that is unfolding with them!  In turn, I read today's meditation in a spirit of elation.   The meditation itself was an example of what I have been calling in my commentaries 'compression,' because there is so much that is being repeated from previous mediations.  This was not intended, and what happened was very much a matter of habit and routine: as the experiment unfolded some of the writing was akin to a warm-up exercise  or routine that I would complete before getting into the zone of making something new.  In some sense it was what the medieval philosophers and theologians called 'excitation' of the spirit via prayer that would take them into contemplation.   Again, this wasn't so much by design and was just what happened.  What is quite new in this mediation are two very key quotations from Heidegger, which I spend some time talking about in my commentary.   Alterity is described as the showing of beings, and I emphasize why the perception of alterity, the strangeness of beings, is not anomie or alienation, which remains an experience of the subject.   The perception of alterity takes us into the phenomenological relationship because the focus is on beings, and 'the nothing' is described as that space (gap) or absence that allows for the presencing of beings.  The nothing, then, as the excess of Being's presencing can now be understood as absence, or space, which is also the possibility of freedom.  Hence, I cite Heidegger:  "without the original revelation of the nothing -- no selfhood, no freedom."  And, further, "In the clear night of the nothing...the original openness of being as such arises:  that they are beings -- and not nothing."

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