Place of Refuge

Place of Refuge

28 August 2010

Some Current News That Coincides With My Recent Channelings and Articles



I really want to thank
anyone 
who follows this blog
with any 
regularity.

I know it's damned hard work.

What's even harder,
is this:

Working a regular job
while this stuff
keeps pouring through.




Some of my entries are pure channelling,
some is pure
intellectual work
done by my poor
feeble mind
as it puts together the pieces
I've been studying 
for a very, very long time.
If you follow the logic that I am channeling,
I mean:
seriously channeling,

then I'm also recognizing texts

done by previous channelers.

I'm putting together
a huge 
puzzle.


You must be patient.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

In the meantime,
check out these recent newstories
that bring some 
interresting correlations
when read along side my recent
more intellectual
entries



Space Squid Takes Sci-Fi Back to Clay-Tablet Age






And two that are not directly related,
but
I just like it because I see
an indirect relation
to other stuff I wrote in the last six months:






(I'll probably have more to say about that last one.  looks a bit like a skin disorder,
doesn't it?)






With Gratitude To The Blogger, LunarWisdom

I really want to thank the blogger
named 
whose blog I joined through
Networked Blogger, I think,
on Facebook.
* * * * 
So I was going through the stream of blog entries
from the blogs I joined there
on my own 
"Makro Makropoulos"
Facebook page,
when I came upon an entry by
CricketSong
aka:
Lunar Wisdom,


and I read it.


There it was,
amidst the countless entries from
the Huffington Post:
CricketSong's
lonely chirping,
sort of like the way
Makro Makropoulos'
murmurs
might pop through on your NetWorkedBlog site,
if, that is,
you were to join the Facebook NetWorkedBlog service.

Anyway,
I read CricketSong's 
chirp,
and what I heard 
explained to me why
I feel a need to be 
Emilia Marti
aka:
Makropoulos
aka:
Makro Markropoulos:

 


 (Raina Kabaivanska sings Emila Marty in Janecek's opera Vec Makropulos (The Makropulos Affair))





Cricket Song introduced me to the concept of
psychic empath.

Now I've known for a little while
that I fit, in nearly every way,
the profile of an empath


( zenya )


A few writers see the empath
as the exact opposite of the sociopath.
Whereas the sociopath has no ability to empathize
the empath has an excess of ability to do so.

Notably, though, empaths have some of the same features as sociopaths:
people are naturally drawn to us.
People will immediately tell us
their deepest darkest secrets,
and if we want to,
we can use that power to our advantage.

Some empaths do, on occasion.
I know I do, either consciously
or not,
when it will serve me.

But since empaths have this terrific desire to
save the world,
most of us are more likely to not
abuse the power we have.

Because we're so good at empathy,
sometimes we can even enter another person's mind:

and that's where this enters into the realm of
what might be called the psychic.

According to a certain "Grace,"
empaths have ten levels of
psychic traits that they might draw on.
And I quote:
 "
sychometry - the empathic ability to receive energy, information and impressions from objects, photographs or places
Telepathy - the empathic ability to read people's thoughts
Mediumship - the empathic ability to feel the presence and energies of spirits
Physical Healing - the empathic ability to feel other people's physical symptoms in your own body (and often the ability to heal, transform or transmute them)
Emotional Healing - the empathic ability to feel another person's emotions
Animal Communication - the empathic ability to hear, feel and communicate with animals
Nature - the empathic ability to read, feel and communicate with nature and with plants
Geomancy - the empathic ability to read the energy of places and of the land - geomancers can feel the energies of the Earth, such as Ley lines. They can also get headaches, pain or anxiety before earthquakes or other disasters occur anywhere on the planet.
Precognition - the empathic ability to feel when something important is about to happen (often this can be a feeling of inexplicable dread or doom)
Claircognizance or Knowing - the empathic ability to feel what needs to be done in any given circumstance, often accompanied by a feeling of peace and calm, even in the midst of a crisis
 "
(askgrace.com)

Thank you, Grace;
I would say I have at least eight of those abilities,
though that's not something I admit to
in polite circles.

In fact, for a long time I prefered to not deal with it at all because,
well,
it can be downright scary sometimes.

But recently I haven't had too much choice in the matter:
it's just been flooding in --
it being tons of different
energies,
perceptions,
precognitions,
inspirations,
intuitions. . . .

you name 'em, I get 'em.


That's where Cricket Song's column on
"Empaths and the Shift"
comes in.
Read it.
Decide what you want to decide on it.
I'll tell you something honestly,
when I started to read it, I thought:
Oh, this will be amusing; another woman who claims to be
a witch.

About half way through,
I was stunned, thinking:
she's explaining what the hell
has been happening to me
for the past five years or so.

And she also helped make me more confident
in asserting the following:


I've been alive for a long time,
and I have memories.

Even though I may have
slept the sleep of death,
I still feel like I've been living
424 years
give or take
a century.

Really:
I showed up during the Rennaisance,
or that's my earliest memory,
right now.

This doesn't mean 
I don't have earlier memories.
No.

Check out my recent entries on Ancient Greece.

Yeah.

And while you're at it,
check out the postings

I'm about to make 
from recent news.


There's a strange coincidence
going on right now,

and it's oh, so bigger

than me.




http://cricketsong-lunarwisdom.blogspot.com/

26 August 2010

Dear Mr. Cortazar, It didn't happen near Paris . . . .


, no,
it happened in China.

Julio Cortazar wrote a story
that I have always admired,
and wondered if it could ever really be possible.
It was called "The Southern Thruway"
("Le Autopista del Sur")

Here is a brief summary of it:

The southern thruway

Summary:The Quiller
Julio Cortázar describes a huge traffic jam on the thruway between Fontainebleau and Paris. It’s a Sunday afternoon and, as the hours go by, the travellers get knowing each other. Two nuns in a 2HV, a young woman in a Dauphine, a pale man who drives a Caravelle, a countryside couple with their little daughter in a Peugeot 203, two irritating youngsters in a SIMCA, a Peugeot 404, a Taunus, etc. They’re totally stuck under the summer heat. Some get out to stretch their legs and, as they return, bring disturbing and almost always false news about the reasons for the traffic jam. Everybody talks about the facts. They hear of a collision between two cars (three casualties and an injuried boy), or of a collision between a Fiat 1500 and an Austin full of tourists, or of the fall of a bus with passengers from the Copenhagen’s plane. Everything is supposition. The latest piece of news is that a small plane had crashed, with a total of many casualties, onto the very thruway.
  As the night comes, the column makes its first important advance, of only 40 metres. Soon the water and the food begin to end and, although everybody helps one another, they must ration everything all out. Most sleep in the cars, and others on the field next to the thruway. In the morning, they advance very little, but no one loses their hopes that, in that afternoon, the route to Paris would be open. However, nothing happens and all remains still. Groups with a representative ahead are formed in order to coordinate the assistance to the weakest. Some fall ill, and the worst happens at the night when the cold starts. So that they can go away walking, someone deserts the place and leaves their car abandoned. An elderly woman passes away, and, in general, the story abounds with descriptions of how terrifying can be human behaviour in an impossible situation. When they finally begin to move, the characters return to their normal lives, and there’s even a romance that had started and cannot have a happy-ending.
The southern thruway Originally published in Shvoong: http://www.shvoong.com/books/353369-southern-thruway/


Well,
Cortazar thought it would happen near Paris.
He was off by a few thousand km --

it happened in China.

Here's the NPR story about it:


Cortazar imagines people starting relationships,
getting entangled,
giving birth,
and then suddenly,
as traffic loosens up
the relationship dissolve
and people disappear from each others' lives
as quickly as they entered it,
in this most accidental way:



 Recent reports say 
the Chinese traffic jam has just disappeared,
just as in the Cortazar story.





23 August 2010

. . . . on channelling . . . .



OK, so it's true:
some of the entries on this blog
are channeled
(for lack of a better word)
and some are not.

(Keep in mind,
as you read these words
that Makropoulos is
424 years old --- soon
to celebrate her birthday, too, in fact --
and she receives messages
from the heavens
about the next coming of Jesus
in her sleep.

Soooo
Makropoulos 
who is me
could be just a fictional character,
and could be
real
if you believe that the messages 
I've received
could be real,

but

if you prefer to treat them
as fictional
which is sometimes the safest way to treat them,
then also treat as fictional

the fact that on some occasions

I empty my mind of all my social
hang-ups
I erase the rather erasable woman
I have been in this lifetime

and receive messages.)

Cool, eh?



This is something that I don't fess up to
all the time,
and definitely not at cocktail parties
or business meetings
or family reunions.

But let me tell you a little about this channelling
that Markopoulos
does:

it requires that I give my body
and my mind
so totally to the voice inside
that guides my fingers
or my pen,
that has something
so urgent to say.

That voice has very little regard
for the body it occupies 
because it knows
that body is just a vehicle
an avatar, if you will
that carries this brain
and this heart
and this soul
and gives them the physical stimuli they need
to make sense
of this physical world
at this plane of its evolution.

It's all pretty damned complicated, but 
simple
as humble pie.

When I'm channelling, the words
come from my higher selves, and
they're kind of interesting to me
and maybe kind of relevant
to what the hell is going on
right now,
and they appear to agree
and coincid with what others
like me
are saying right now:

ie:

There's a big change coming
on, and we have to be ready
for it.
The signs are present
everywhere; we
simply have to read them.



In some of my entries, too, I'm reading the signs: 
you see, when I'm not channelling, I'm
thinking
with this painfully logical brain
I was born with.
Far too logical, in fact,
for any woman to be burdened with.

Please note:
I'm not done.
I still have plenty to say.

~ ~ ~

I'm telling you this, 
so you know
(if you dare to dabble in this dubious blog)
that not all my entries are channellings
for the simple reason that
it's very tiring,
and sometimes even dangerous 
to channel,

and sometimes

Life, The World and Everything
(aka: my job and family and friends)
demands me to put my creative energy there.
On those days, I post
music
or 
cat videos
because cats are always true to themselves.

We have to fact it:
cats are the most superior beings on the planet.

We're just the monkeys.



So anyway,
I realize some of my patient readers
(and I do thank you, patient readers)
may only  want to read
the channellings.

For that reason, I've marked all of them with the keyword
"channelling"
so you can focus just on those if you so desire.

Some of the other entries are 
semi-channelled:
ie:
they're written with
a great influence of channelling, but 
intended to explain
some aspect of a previous channelling --
in other words, they are meager attempts
to put the jumble into "layman's terms"

If you recognize the patterns of 
often-used keywords,
you'll see where those are.

The others are general interest.
My general interest,
at that.
And I'm kind of odd,
a little spooky,
and quite spiritual,
if you haven't noticed
by now.

Thanks for reading.




( sprott )       

22 August 2010

The Ones Who Move and The Ones Who Talk: A Channelling


You see,
I've lived through so many lives:
I've seen the patterns played
over and over again:
and we're deceiving ourselves to think
that no one knows
what the fuck is going on.

Somebody does;
they're called the Inner Circle.
Really.


A village in any country
displays the same characteristics,
the same stereotypes,
from generation to generation.
It doesn't matter if it's
in China or India or Syria
or Africa or Argentina
or Nebraska.

It doesn't matter.


There's always the bully
There's always the freek
There's always the angel
There's always the geek
There's always the status quo,
the ones who don't know
that the extremes of society
talk to each other
to keep the rest
under control:
The ones who stick out; the noticable ones
who stay in one place all their lives
who see each other
over and over again and who know
exactly
who are the angels
who are the devils 
who are the beauties
who are the beasts
who are the kinds
who are the swingers and the ones
who know everybody's business
in any given place at any given time:
they're the ones who stay and 
talk
to each other.
2.
Those are the personality types;
there are also the talents:
those things we all do well
naturally:

we can be a freak
but be very good
at building a house;

we can be a beauty
but be very good
at fixing cars;

we can be a beast
but be good at ceremony
because we understand the meaning of the sacred;

we can have the desire to create
and not have any hands.


But as long as we are true
to the essential spirit within us,
we have an amazing
kind of beauty
that others see and admire,
and if we could all just be true
to the essential thing we are
then, well, 
we wouldn't have all the troubles in the world,
we'd just all be amazed
at the beauty around us




 3.

The talent we know is true 
to us
that makes us beautiful when we practice it
is our part of 
the spirit that runs through us
like a thread through the cloth,
that binds us
makes us one,
makes us God,
makes us Son.

The Manifestation of the Diverse
features of the All:
we are it.
We are one.
4.
But wait a minute ---
I may run 
far too far ahead
of myself.

THINK ABOUT IT THIS WAY:

Think about high school --
(high schools, in general, are the closest many of us
in America
will ever get to village life):
For some of us, it was
 a misery
because we were convinced there was
something we had to know
but nobody would tell us.

And we didn't know how to ask;
didn't think we had the right
to talk.

So we stumbled through
trying hard to figure out
the social game
while also trying
to deal with our growing
brains;

they grow so fast, but so does
our capacity to reproduce ourselves
so without knowing, our essential personalities showed
while the hormones 
made us insane;
we could control it,
so we became --
ourselves, flagrantly, and mutated.



Unfortunately, high school is also a place that doesn't tolerate
difference much.
So many of us are happy to see it end;
as soon as we leave, and
go somewhere else,
we can hide; we can be
something other than what we are 
essentially.




5.
What I describe is human
nature, and these patterns have gone on
for as long as humans have been
social, have recognized themselves
as different from each other.

You see: humans,
be they Adam or Eve,
Sonny or Cher,
Cain or Abel,
Donnie or Marie,
Romeo or Juliet
or 
Emre or Esen,
Noah or Abraham
Buddah or Jesus or 
Mary Magdaline, Cleopatra, Ghengis Kahn, Charlie Chan . . . 
or all the other nameless
thousands,
have always had those patterns,
age to age,
generation to generation.

The big difference between 
then
and now
between a small town and
urban mindlessness

is the People Who Move.

6.
The Ones Who Move are the ones
who hated high school
(or hated the village)
because no one told
what everyone knew

because the ones who moved,
were the ones that everyone ostracized
for one reason or antoher,
so they moved
to new places,
full of other Ones Who Stayed There All Along.

The Ones Who Stay take advantage 
of what the ones who stay in one place know:
who are the geeks;
who are the fools;
who are the beauties; 
who are the tools;
and the ones who have power
are the ones 
who talk
and walk
into the right circles at the right times


( about )

They keep a kind of power over
the rest of us,
by talking only
to the ones
they want to share
their power with.

7.
Now the ones who move and talk
are the ones who move into
the inner circle quickly
and gradually create
a larger world.

They're the ones who know, 
well, 
just about everything about everyone
in a number
of different places
and they figure out the categories
of the ones who are in any given place
pretty quickly
because they know that that kind of knowledge
is power


~ ~ ~ ~

You see, I've lived so long.
While everyone else has died and returned
at least four or five times
each
I just trudge on through,
in the same old young body,
but ancient inside,
while your dying always provides you
a new masquerade.
And in your dying
you're forgetting
the growth you made in the years before --

you return to your old patterns,
the social lies you constructed
to mask
the old essential you,
and you have to learn it all 
all over 
again.

(Your forgetting is so deep
because the sleep of death is so great,
that it seems that everyone thinks
their short time on earth
is the only incarnation:
it's the one shot deal.
But it's not:

I meet people, and I know
I've met them
somewhere before; in fact I've bumped into them
many times before,
in their different lives,
their different places,
and they just don't see
they keep playing the same mistakes over and over
again;
they don't recall anything because they slept the sleep of death so deep.

(The sleep of death doesn't have to be
so deep
No sir;
But it is.
If we knew the sleep of death was
but a sleep,
a sleep during which 
our spirits seek out the best
avatar
in which to return and learn
the lessons needed to be learned
on our journey to perfection
as we seek
to come back, hoping
to get it right the next time
so we too can be
one of the ones who stay
and talk
and get into
the inner circle, but also bring
 the wisdom of how to live in the world
sanely and justly
to those who keep forgetting.


You see, I also see that talking
and getting into
the inner circle
right now
doesn't require
memory,
doesn't require
intelligence,
ethics,
wisdom
talent
NO
it only requires beauty
and the ability to manipulate
beauty.

Only rarely does an inner circle being
possess deep wisdom,
and when they do,
they become immortal,
because people keep talking about them
for ages to come.
They become 
stars in the firmament
of our collective souls
the ones who tell us how to do it right,
and how to do it well,
and how to do it,
beautifully



but also
there are those heroes who show us
how to do it wrong, so we
never do it wrong
again



8.

We've just gone through an age
when everyone thought
it was wrong to think
in stereotypes
because people believed
they were individuals and deserved
individual rights.

We'll call that
The Age of America.
It was a 
selfish Age
in the History of 
Humanity,
and lasted about
600 years, give or take
a few; 
it began with 
the Renaissance, the Age of the Growth of the Human Mind.

The only way the collective
Human Mind
could grow would be for 
everyone to believe
that they were alone
abandoned,
miserable.

So each mind had to grow,
on its own
and find a variety of ways 
to get us out of that state
of being divided and alone
and miserable
and into United States.

And we did
precisely that.

***

Because at its best,
the United States has been 
populated
by The Ones Who Move,
those who didn't know
what everyone who stayed home 
was saying and caring about.  No.
The United States 
has historically been populated
by the Ones 
Who Were So Busy Thinking or Doing, so 
they didn't see
what everyone who talked
to each other saw:
they were too busy being creative individuals,
and they refused to see
the geeks,
the beauties, 
the nerds,
the squirrels,
the trains,
the guy 
who sits on the corner and is there every day.

Why didn't we see that?
Because we were probably 
tending a farm, or
writing a book, or
composing a song,
or
designing a house, or
playing with electricity 
in the garage,
and not talking to the people who talked
because we recognized they really had
very little to say.

So we (or our ancestors) left
the small town,
the homeland,
the place 
where patterns were familiar
and went somewhere else and
actually believed
it would be different.
But it really isn't.

We just created a new place
with geeks and freaks
and queens and kings
and nerds and gays
and ordinary joes:

It's all the same, and it 
repeats itself from
generation to generation
in every town, in every 
neighborhood, 
in every high school,
it's all
the same,
even in the land of individual liberty, 
even in America.

* * * * *

America is at its best when people
work together united by one purpose,
despite differences,
working side by side
despite jealousies,
living, even loving, past
the surfaces we fear.

The Age of America is Over
and will never return
if we cannot do that.

8.

We have reached the
Age of the Grid,
the age
of a union that extends far
beyond national borders,
that lives largely in the mind,
transmitted on the weave of frequency
and
if we talk, and talk enough
and talk to the right people,
we will find 
our likenesses,
and the fact we're different
just won't give a damn,
because it just doesn't matter 
in the Age of the Grid.

It's not the Age of Aquarius,
though that was as necessary
to the evolution
of the human mind
as the Age of 
America
was.

The question stands, now:
will we let 
the Age of America pass 
into disrespectful squallor
like the Roman Age,
or will we let it end
heroically
as in Ancient Greece,
and thereby let it last
Eternally?

That's up to U.S.

Right now the Gods of America,
the Inner Circle -
the Ones Who Talk
and get Talked About
are creating an infernal,
eternal pattern
of selfishness and gluttony

Yes, that's what keeps humans human

If only the Ones Who Talk
and get Talked About
could change their ways unanimously,
could right their wrongs
selflessly,
the Age of America would enter
history
heroically.



It's up to U.S.



~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

It's a strange ride to be on,
what appears to be
a roller coaster of
life
        and death
life
       and death
and life

The fear of death would diminish if we could
only see
that what seems to be a windy, 
upside down journey
is actually a clear
straight line,
revolving within
and around
eternity.


19 August 2010

Here Piggie Piggie, I mean Kitty Kitty


I know I know I know already.

If you pay any attention to my

Other Blog,

I posted this there today too.

Am I being lazy?

Or just really overworked this week?


Call me whatever,
but I just think this is fabulous:



Somewhere in Thailand, a zoo is having a pig
help raise the baby tigers.



Just a week or so ago, 
on this blog,
I wrote an entry about
Eleusis,
in which I contemplated
pigs
a little bit.

I'm beginning to think pigs
are quite sacred,
kinda smart,
and as recent genome testing has proven,
maybe more kin
than din-
ner.


Anyway,  I am way too tired and busy to do any channeling 
or deep thinking
over the past few days,
but I do love this story.  
Please follow this link
for more info:






18 August 2010

Happy Birthday 19th Amendment



Wow.
I've avoided this blog for a few days,
hoping I'd be inspired to write
something funny.

I know my entries can be
so damned serious,
and perhaps even
difficult and dull.

And I don't mean to be so---
so---
well, I don't know.
Sorry about that.

*

Then I realized what today is:
the Anniversary of the 90th Amendment
of the United States Constitution,
the amendment that gave women
the right to vote in the USA.

Well, let me tell you,
in the larger scheme of things,
that happened just yesterday.
(Don't forget, Makropoulos is
424 years old,
or thereabouts.
(It's been so long, 
I kind of lose count)
And when you've been around that long,
well,
90 years isn't really 
all that long.)

90 years can embrace up to four generations in
any given family,
sometimes more.

I know that in my own current
lifetime,
the women I claim as my grandmothers
were born before
1920,
indeed, they were both young women by 1920;
one was trying to start her own cosmetics company,
the other was driving her own car,
so I imagine they both might have been
quite involved in
the fight.

Actually, now that I think of it:
in Seneca Falls, NY
around 1998,
at an event that I think was the 150th anniversary of

Hillary Clinton was there, too.
I actually have some problems with Hillary,
but on that day she gave a good speech,
and reminded all the women and men present
to not squander that right 
that our ancestors worked so hard to gain for us.

We should really never forget that.


(loc)
(Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony)


(Lucretia Mott - from same source as above, the Library of Congress)


Alice Paul
(same source as first graphic)










19th Amendment: How far have women in politics come since 1920? - CSMonitor.com

19th Amendment: How far have women in politics come since 1920? - CSMonitor.com

Harvey Pekar, October 8, 1939 – July 12, 2010




This may seem totally out of character for this blog,
but I recently learned of the death of

You see, Makropoulos deeply appreciates
anyone
who is bold enough to stand up for what they stand for, and
anyone
who is what they are, without any pretensions,
and that's one thing you can say 
for
Harvey Pekar,
the creator of the comic strip,
American Splendor.

He was born,
raised,
lived,
and died
in
Cleveland, Ohio,
and Makropoulos also
has a special place
in her heart for
Cleveland, Ohio.



re: Harvey Pekar:

He was what he was.


May he rest in peace.











15 August 2010

read the letter


I'm an absolutely miserable blogger.
When I write,
I write in abundance.
When I don't write it's because my mind is
a blank,






an empty page waiting for the words to form.
Blankness is frustrating.
Sometimes it's far more useful
when a creator at least has
a mold,
a model
of some kind
in which to shape
the message.


* * 



Remember when paper looked
like that?
When the challenge of writing was not
to produce meaning,
but rather,
to produce shapes within a prescribed space?

I really loved learning to print because
it was like artwork;
it was also a little like
playing bumper cars,
or something like that.
My pen was the car,
bumping from hard line to hard line
passing through the dashed line,
grateful that it was there to guide me on my course.

There were certain letters I loved 
to produce:

SSSSSSSSssssssss

GGGGGGggggggg

AAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaa

RPRPRPRPRPrrrrpppp

fabulous shapes that arched through those lines
in such interesting ways.


I loved looking for the points of balance:
the two corresponding curves in the
S,
the slopes of the
V

There was something else about those letters
that I love the most: 
I really felt they were shaped
like the sound they made.
I felt that writing them was the act
of finding an exact graphic representation
on the sounds I made in my mouth.

So too was the case with

XXXXXXXX
KKKKKKK
TTTTTTTT
UUUUUUU
VVVVVVVVVVV

and of course

OOOOOOOOOO


***





While I was in Greece
recently,
I had the pleasure of being with Greek people
who had some knowledge not only of how to read 
Modern Greek
but also
Ancient Greek.

It is interesting to stand at an ancient site
and hear people sounding out the letters there.
When the sounds and the shapes were put together, they even made sense to me.

And I had a little revelation.

Well, it was and is one of my funky little theories,
one of those things
that happens in my mind
when everyone else thinks
I'm zoning out.

It went like this:


***



( omniglot )


I recently met a Chinese woman who explained to me
the evolution of written Chinese.

Fundamentally, written Chinese is a series of pictographs --
each sign contains
a series of strokes
the work together to produce
an impression of a complete idea.

Originally,
the script was more recognizably pictoral,
but over time it became more abstract:


( commons.wikimedia )

This type of writing is called hànzi and I'm a little afraid
to try to explain much else about it,
because it's such a different
system for me.  I'm just beginning
to understand it.
Follow the link on the word hànzi and it
will bring you to yet another site
that explains the strokes
and the writing a little more.

Keep in mind that within this system,
one block of strokes
represents an entire concept,
and as new concepts have emerged,
different combinations of existing signs
have been used to signify those new concepts,
as you can see below,
and the translations are
amusing:


(the wikipedia article on this system
also appears to be
pretty helpful)


Notably,
when a young Chinese student is learning to write,
she doesn't use that three-lined paper
that we in the West use.

She does have paper to help her,
but notice how it emphasizes isolated squares;
it's really much more like
a grid


( cantonese )

For anyone who
has dared to read other entries
in this blog,
especially those
where the keyword is
"grid"
you can imagine I might
go a little crazy right now with the implications of this.
But I won't because that's not the purpose
of this entry.

Rather my purpose here
is to think about
the writing system itself,
how it is produced,
and the fact that it is,
at its very root,
historically,
representational.

Chinese writing began as an attempt to represent,
as an artist would,
the world that the writer viewed.
Its basis is concrete
and grounded in
observable outside phenomenon.
Unlike Western script.



or so we have thought, for a very very long time.


****


( ancientscripts )

I had had this rather fascinating introduction
to written Chinese
right before I left
on my trip to my own
ancient homeland.

And then I found myself wandering through ruins,
looking at an ancient script
that my guide claimed
any Modern Greek
could read today.

My own Greek
is long gone,
forgotten on the waves or torments
of time and history,
but I read along with my companions
as we looked at the worn inscriptions,
and I was amazed at how much
I could actually hear in my head.
My amazement continued
when I began to feel I knew why:
it was fairly easy.

Because of the way they were presented for me,
with each letter framed by a box,
I imagined that the box itself
was the frame for creating the form of the letter, and
I decided that those ancient letters were
representational.
But they did not represent
a cow, or a mountain, or a mother,
no
I decided that the boxy frame
defined the space of the mouth,
and the drawings within that box
represented where I was supposed to put
my tongue inside my mouth,
and how to hold my lips,
as I produced sound:

Θ, for instance,
told me to put my tongue
between my teeth
with my lips slightly open --
th is the sound it makes.

Γ told me to hold my tongue
pressed against
the top of my mouth,
and curve the tip of it
down to the bottom of my mouth
and press it there.

Do it, the sound you produce will be "g"
which is what that represents.

Δ is the tip of the tongue
against the front of the mouth,
a harder obstruction to that frontal space
than Λ,

Δ, by the way, is "D"
Λ is "L".

Now if you look at the chart above,
you can see the letters
changed from place to place,
but in general
my funny little rule applies,

and I began to think that writing,
as we know it in the Western World,
may actually be more representational
than we give it credit it for.

In fact, here is an alphabet
that precedes the Greek
that even more fully exemplifies
my thoughts:



( historian )


Many today may argue
(like Saussure)
that Western words and letters are
arbitrarily chosen,
and demand a high level of
abstract thinking.
I'd agree with the latter part of that
equation,
because clearly,
the Western alphabet,
just like written Chinese
has evolved over time
and moved so far away
from its original source
that  it is all abstraction and
seemingly random.
We don't so clearly
see the original pictures;

If you agree they are pictures.

And what I'm thinking is they are pictures
of the inside of the mouth:


( soundsofenglish )


graphically representing the face
and the contortions it must make
to produce the sounds
that make up words.

In a sense, reading languages that use this type of alphabet
is much more
laborious
than Chinese,
because you must be
much more patient
to read Western languages,
putting one sound after another
in a line, until words, then sentences,
then paragraphs
are decoded.

This type of writing dooms us to
linear thought.
(Linear writing and thinking
are two parts of a trinity,
and the third is
time.)

Yet, it also allows for more flexibility,
more words, and perhaps
more subtlety of meaning.

*/*

The other point my mind went to,
as I contemplated this theory
was the relationship between the scribe and the exterior world
suggested in both types of writing systems:

As I say above,
the Chinese system represents
concrete, identifiable
objects that exist
outside of the writer/scribe/viewer.
It is a system
where the writer
represents his ideas by showing the world
he observes.
There is little sense of the person doing
the actual writing.

 (Metropolitan Museum postcard)
( brooklyn.cuny )


Whereas in the Western system,
it's all about representing something
that is happening in the writer's body--
it's a very somatic and physical form of representation
located solely in the body
of the writer.
It has everything to do with the changes
that the outside world
does to the body of the speaker,
and has little to do
with representing the outside world itself.

If you get what I mean.



Historically, Chinese script is more about external objects,
representing them,
knowing about them;
while
Western script claims a subject,
and the subject is
the writer himself.

Notably,
the first-person pronoun
in Greek
is

"ego"