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Karma? posted 26 July 2004 in Author Q & AKarma? by FuraxVZ, Candidate

“That which comes before determines that which comes after.”

This principal of the Logos seems to be the concept of karma. Am I reading too much Buddhist thought into what Kellhus and the Dunyain are?

Throughout reading TDtCB, I kept drawing parallels between Dunyain thought and Buddhist philosophy. Was this intentional? Perhaps I am using this parallel as a crutch to understand the Dunyain. And as a Buddhist, I tend to see the dharma in everything. view post


Karma? posted 26 July 2004 in Author Q & AKarma? by Replay, Auditor

I would say it's partly similar to Karma.

As for drawing parallels with Buddhist thought, yeah, there are a few similarities in there. But there is also a lot that is different. Perhaps the main thing is is that the Dunyain think they can reach some kind of enlightenment through the logos, whereas a Buddhist would say that that is impossible. If anything, in many ways it is the logos itself that needs to be woken up from. view post


Karma? posted 26 July 2004 in Author Q & AKarma? by FuraxVZ, Candidate

Mmmm, interesting. Thanks Replay.

I guess I need to grok more on what the Logos is, and I feel I'm missing out by not having read The Warrior Prophet yet.

To me, the Logos seemed to be the vehicle for Enlightenment and/or the laws of the Universe. So I equated Logos to Dharma. Where the defintion of Dharma can vary depending on the context, so I thought the Logos might as well. From what I've seen the Logos is more like the techniques of study, etc.

Again, perhaps my question is premature by not having read TWP. view post


Karma? posted 26 July 2004 in Author Q & AKarma? by Replay, Auditor

Well I always figured the logos was to do with the intellect (as in logic). Looking it up though, it does appear as though it can have more than one meaning. Im sure Scott can clear it up for us. view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q & AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You assume too much, Replay! <!-- s:wink: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=":wink:" title="Wink" /><!-- s:wink: -->

No, there was no intentional parallel to Buddhism and the Dunyain, though I think I can see how you might suspect one, Furax: both are concerned with the 'appetitive soul.' But where Buddhism (as I understand it) seeks to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to end suffering, the Dunyain seek to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to better master the origins of their thought - to become a 'self-moving soul,' one free of the myriad darknesses that come before. The Logos, or Reason, is their principle instrument. Unlike the Buddhists, the Dunyain draw no line between what must be mastered and what must be accepted. For the Dunyain, anything that impacts the origins of our thoughts, be it animal lust, historical caprice, or the words of another, must be mastered.

This actually makes the Dunyain the antithesis of creeds such as Buddhism or Stoicism, I think. view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And to think I was about to ask if you were secretly discusssing logocentrism in your stories! Can you tell who's been busy reading through Derrida's Of Grammatology recently? <!-- s;) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=";)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;) --> view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well now, logocentrism is a different story (so long as you take it in the expanded sense)! What is the darkness that comes before if not differance? view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You're revealing too much now, Scott. You might just talk one of those contest people into believing that they must relate differance to TDTCB in a very detailed way! <!-- s;) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=";)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;) -->

But I'm slowly beginning to grasp part of what Derrida is saying there. It's going to take a while to retrain my mind to think that way. I'm still in my Foucault stage, ya know <!-- s;) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=";)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;) --> Something about archaeologies of knowledge appeals to me more than what Derrida wrote then (but to be fair, I'm reading an early work of Derrida's, even if it's the "corrected" edition). But I am finding his discussion on the tyranny of writing to be very thought-provoking. Part of it is starting to worm its way into how I'm conceiving part of a writing I'm doing. But I don't think I want to get into that discussion of how symbols are related to oral/written cultures just yet - it'd only detract from the overall focus. And then's there's the thought of post-literate cultures and the methods of communication that they use to convey meaning...or to break it down into possible "untruths." I suspect we're nearing the point where even photos cannot be trusted, due to Photoshopping techniques of creating forgeries.

Then again, I'm still scarred by reading Danielewski's House of Leaves this past fall. That work is haunting in a way that I haven't seen a fiction ever be done before. Might be the most original (and baffling) thing I've read.

And what did I say about getting off-track? <!-- s;) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=";)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;) --> Anyways, thought you'd enjoy the thoughts spilling out, so deal. view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Replay, Auditor

Quote: &quot;Cu'jara Cinmoi&quot;:1qqheagc
...the Dunyain seek to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to better master the origins of their thought - to become a 'self-moving soul,' one free of the myriad darknesses that come before. [/quote:1qqheagc]

Would you mind expanding on what you mean by this? Especially the bit about a 'self-moving soul'.

The Logos, or Reason, is their principle instrument.


That's the thing though, trying to master thought with even more thought (Reason) just isn't going to happen. I guess you could say it's like trying to wash off mud with mud.

Unlike the Buddhists, the Dunyain draw no line between what must be mastered and what must be accepted. For the Dunyain, anything that impacts the origins of our thoughts, be it animal lust, historical caprice, or the words of another, must be mastered.


Well Buddhists don't so much accept things, as try to see through them. As it's only through this that true mastery comes.

I may be reading this wrong, but you what you said about the Dunyain almost makes it seem as if they are afraid of uncertainty and are in an endless struggle to try and force their will or control over everything. But if they truely wish to be free from all that comes before, should not they also try to rid of themselves of this very need to be certain? Of this need to be in control of everything around them? view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Would you mind expanding on what you mean by this? Especially the bit about a 'self-moving soul'.


If that which comes before determines that which comes after, this means every thought is moved by something stemming from the 'darkness', and that agency and purposiveness are illusory. What the Dunyain are after, in effect, is free will - which they see as an accomplishment rather than a pre-given faculty.

What impresses them so much about the Logos (and its brethren, geometry, mathematics) is it's its timelessness, the fact that it does not seem to fall within the 'circuit of before and after.'

That's the thing though, trying to master thought with even more thought (Reason) just isn't going to happen. I guess you could say it's like trying to wash off mud with mud.


Only if you look at thought in performative terms. If thought is representational (or something like it), then this isn't the case. Just think of the way various insights over the course of your life led you to greater self understanding and self-control. This is implicit in your comments regarding the Buddhists achieving mastery by 'seeing through.'

But if they truely wish to be free from all that comes before, should not they also try to rid of themselves of this very need to be certain? Of this need to be in control of everything around them?


For the Dunyain, certainty or knowledge is just a means to the end of becoming the Absolute - or a self-moving soul. In more philosophical terms, you might say their primary concern is ontological (the attainment of a certain mode of unconditioned (which is to say, transcendent) being), and that the epistemology has value only as a primary means to this end.

Excellent questions as always, Replay! Does this answer them? view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

But I'm slowly beginning to grasp part of what Derrida is saying there. It's going to take a while to retrain my mind to think that way. I'm still in my Foucault stage, ya know Something about archaeologies of knowledge appeals to me more than what Derrida wrote


I actually think that the Archaeology Foucault is the worst of the many Foucaults - still too caught up in the structuralist backlash against phenomenology (Sartre was too popular to be cool). Otherwise, though, I agree: there's a formalism to Derrida that I (now) find very problematic.

If you want help deciphering him, though, just throw some questions/quotes my way. It'd do me some good to shake the rust off! view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Quote: &quot;Cu'jara Cinmoi&quot;:1tq7s8ul
Would you mind expanding on what you mean by this? Especially the bit about a 'self-moving soul'.


If that which comes before determines that which comes after, this means every thought is moved by something stemming from the 'darkness', and that agency and purposiveness are illusory. What the Dunyain are after, in effect, is free will - which they see as an accomplishment rather than a pre-given faculty.

What impresses them so much about the Logos (and its brethren, geometry, mathematics) is it's its timelessness, the fact that it does not seem to fall within the 'circuit of before and after.'[/quote:1tq7s8ul]

And here's where I thought of Derrida's discussion of writing and its tyrannical control of the discourse (if I'm understanding him right, that is). If I remember correctly, Derrida discusses mathematics as being a method in which discourse can side-step the temporality of writing. Or maybe I'm misunderstanding things quite a bit (as I often suspect I am as I'm reading Derrida). I really need to re-read Part I of Of Grammatology to see if I can follow better his arguments on logocentrism. Needless to say, yet another layer to the narrative text? <!-- s;) --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=";)" title="Wink" /><!-- s;) -->

That's the thing though, trying to master thought with even more thought (Reason) just isn't going to happen. I guess you could say it's like trying to wash off mud with mud.


Only if you look at thought in performative terms. If thought is representational (or something like it), then this isn't the case. Just think of the way various insights over the course of your life led you to greater self understanding and self-control. This is implicit in your comments regarding the Buddhists achieving mastery by 'seeing through.'

But if they truely wish to be free from all that comes before, should not they also try to rid of themselves of this very need to be certain? Of this need to be in control of everything around them?


For the Dunyain, certainty or knowledge is just a means to the end of becoming the Absolute - or a self-moving soul. In more philosophical terms, you might say their primary concern is ontological (the attainment of a certain mode of unconditioned (which is to say, transcendent) being), and that the epistemology has value only as a primary means to this end.

Excellent questions as always, Replay! Does this answer them?
view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Quote: &quot;Cu'jara Cinmoi&quot;:31yoq7fr
But I'm slowly beginning to grasp part of what Derrida is saying there. It's going to take a while to retrain my mind to think that way. I'm still in my Foucault stage, ya know Something about archaeologies of knowledge appeals to me more than what Derrida wrote


I actually think that the Archaeology Foucault is the worst of the many Foucaults - still too caught up in the structuralist backlash against phenomenology (Sartre was too popular to be cool). Otherwise, though, I agree: there's a formalism to Derrida that I (now) find very problematic.

If you want help deciphering him, though, just throw some questions/quotes my way. It'd do me some good to shake the rust off![/quote:31yoq7fr]

I'll certainly take you up on that! (See above reply) As for my readings of Foucault so far, I've noticed what you're saying about his move away from the Structuralist model (did notice that Derrida zinged him on that one). Thing is, I haven't read the earlier Foucault until now - I really thought what he did with Disclipine and Punish was incredible, but that might be one of his more accessible works, now that I think about it.

I'm curious about this formalism problem - anything specific you can point out to me?

I'll ask more later - received my copy of Miéville's latest novel just now and will be reading that tonight before dipping back into Derrida and then Foucault. view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by FuraxVZ, Candidate

Quote: &quot;Cu'jara Cinmoi&quot;:1uyz0427
You assume too much, Replay! <!-- s:wink: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=":wink:" title="Wink" /><!-- s:wink: -->

No, there was no intentional parallel to Buddhism and the Dunyain, though I think I can see how you might suspect one, Furax: both are concerned with the 'appetitive soul.' But where Buddhism (as I understand it) seeks to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to end suffering, the Dunyain seek to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to better master the origins of their thought - to become a 'self-moving soul,' one free of the myriad darknesses that come before. The Logos, or Reason, is their principle instrument. Unlike the Buddhists, the Dunyain draw no line between what must be mastered and what must be accepted. For the Dunyain, anything that impacts the origins of our thoughts, be it animal lust, historical caprice, or the words of another, must be mastered.

This actually makes the Dunyain the antithesis of creeds such as Buddhism or Stoicism, I think.[/quote:1uyz0427]

That's very much, Dr. Bakker. I need to digest this response a bit (and I'm certainly over my head with the discussion of Derrida).

I'm still clinging to the Buddhist/Dunyain parallel a bit; when you said 'the darness that comes before' I translate that as samsara (suffering). Though, I agree that Buddhists try not to master the origination of thoughts per se; it's more of an exercise in self-awareness to discover how to recognize errant thoughts.

As I said before, interesting stuff. Very gripping material in the book that transcends any genre. view post


Karma? posted 27 July 2004 in Author Q &amp; AKarma? by Replay, Auditor

What impresses them so much about the Logos (and its brethren, geometry, mathematics) is it's its timelessness, the fact that it does not seem to fall within the 'circuit of before and after.'


Whilst I agree the Logos is impressive, I can't really see how it can be said that it doesnt fall into the circuit of before and after. And even though the Logos is very useful tool for examing the relative world around us, when it comes to absolute, all the Logos can do is paint pictures of what it like and never actually touch apon it.

Only if you look at thought in performative terms. If thought is representational (or something like it), then this isn't the case. Just think of the way various insights over the course of your life led you to greater self understanding and self-control. This is implicit in your comments regarding the Buddhists achieving mastery by 'seeing through.'


Even though that does make sense, it's not quite as simple as that (I wish it was!). Yes, there are times when you read something and it can have an impact on you. You may even act a little different afterwards. But all that is happening is that one set of conditioning (or programming) is being replaced for another. And besides, even if you understand something intellectually, that does not necessarily mean you totally understand it.

A good example of this is the subject of thought. Intellectually, it is not all that hard to see that there really is no such thing as a thinker - that thought arises by its own volition (mainly due to cause and effect). I mean, if you spend a lot of time looking in to it it doesn't take long for you to agree with what those old spiritual masters having been saying about the illusion of self. But to understand this with your whole being, so that every moment you live with this truth, is another matter entirely.

For that to happen requires a lot more, and no amount of words (however wise) or thinking (however deep) will ever get down to the root of it. Only awareness can do that. It's only through perhaps years of paying attention to say the motion of thought, until something finally clicks and your perception does a total flip, can it be said that you understand it with your whole being. And this is more what I meant by 'seeing through' than anything.

I'm not saying the Logos isn't useful - infact it can be very helpful in pointing the way and quickening the path - it's just that I would say it can only take you so far. It's like in sports if some top player writes a book on everything he has learnt: even if digest everything in it and understand all that he says, it doesnt really make you into a better player. Whilst what he said will obviously be useful to show you the way to be better, it is only through years of practice that you can ever really achieve this.

For the Dunyain, certainty or knowledge is just a means to the end of becoming the Absolute - or a self-moving soul. In more philosophical terms, you might say their primary concern is ontological (the attainment of a certain mode of unconditioned (which is to say, transcendent) being), and that the epistemology has value only as a primary means to this end.


Well it's certainly a noble goal, it's just the means that I question. For instance, what does certainty have to do with the absolute? How do their attempts to control everything around them bring them closer to their goal? view post


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