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24620Re: [existlist] Re: the nameless Persona

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  • George Walton
    Jan 31, 2004
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      Mary Jo,

      Not sure if you have ever read The Magus but, if not, the "projected" persona is a role one plays. Conchis and June and Julie weave a tapestry around Nicholas and he is "spun" into the story. It is as though, for example, you went to the theatre to see a play and the next thing you know you are up on the stage with the actors. They are spinning you around and around but since you are not part of the original "script" how you react is still, in part, spontaneous and thus changes the dynamics of the play. The difference being that it takes some time before Nicholas begins to realize he is ensnared in the web whereas when you go to the theatre, even if you end up "in" the play, you know it is one right from the start. What becomes fascinating, however, is that the spinning becomes both more and less contrived as it begins to dawn on Nicholas that he is perhaps "only a pawn in their game". And so, in turn, he tries to make them pawns in his rendition of the play. But it's a stacked deck,
      to say the least. Why? Because Fowles is writng the novel and he holds all the cards. Or does he? That is where more "postmodern" interpretations of the "text" come into....uh...."play", eh?

      David sees this, of course, as a psychological metaphor for human interactions both on and off the stage. In other words, you can begin to understand the way in which you are profoundly conditioned----but "you" are still ensnared. And the only exist is the last one. If you know what I mean.

      Biggie

      Mary Jo Malo <alcyon11@...> wrote:
      Biggie,

      By projected persona do you mean intentionally deceptive, or since we
      don't have a personality or self; we are projecting what we believe
      to be our true self?

      Mary Jo

      --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, George Walton <iambiguously@y...>
      wrote:
      > Mary Jo,
      >
      > No, you do not "get" me. Otherwise, I would be extending you an
      invitation to meet David and Annie...to consider participating in the
      Spin Cycle with The Troupe.
      >
      > But that is merely a point of view, right? And hardly an important
      one. It's not like The Troupe is the CIA or some super secret
      organization that moves the world. We are just a bunch of ordinary
      folks intrigued with transfiguring what John Fowles did in The Magus
      [re the relationship between Nicholas, Conchis, June and Julie] out
      into cyberspace. I don't even participate actively anymore. Just
      occasionally. And, again, I go fishing for minds---for nihilists of a
      particular bent.
      >
      > And you don't really like or dislike me at all. Why? Because you
      don't know me. You know only the persona I project in rooms like
      this. But, then, that flows the same way from you to me, right? That,
      in part, is what makes cyberspace discussions so intriguing---and
      surreal. And it is all about words, by and large.
      >
      > David is not a practising psychologist. He does not see patients.
      He does research, by and large. How he "influences" others, however,
      is by reintroducing them to language. Words acquire what he calls
      a "magical and mystical" quality in human discourse. We name things,
      in other words. But some things cannot be named. Not really. So, he
      is fascinated by the relationships between language and idealism and
      ideology and psychological defense mechanisms. It relates to Milan
      Kundera's conjecture about weighting down the unbearable lightness of
      being. And one of the easiest ways to do that, of course, is with
      words. We make them mean what we want them to name...and,
      concomittantly, what we want them to name is what we think will make
      us feel grounded psychologically.
      >
      > Biggie
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > Mary Jo Malo <alcyon11@y...> wrote:
      > Biggie,
      >
      > Clever is fun. Being the provocative or evocative "clown"
      apparently
      > gives meaning to your life, and you cause us to seriously question
      > what we say here. You force us to contemplate the words we use, and
      > that's something we need to do from time to time. I do "get" you,
      but
      > I don't always "like" you ;-) I have a question about your
      psychology
      > prone acquaintances which involves the practice of psychology
      rather
      > than the academics. How do psychologists NOT influence their
      patients
      > with their personal perspectives. I mean look at the abuses
      > of "recovered memories", "Christian counselors", and now, heaven
      > forbid the possibility of "Nihilist" shrinks. Seriously, I can
      > understand an existentialist psychiatrist, but a nihilist? Perhaps
      I
      > don't recall your explanation of all this, or this isn't related at
      > all. Perhaps I'm raising a general question for discussion in this
      > group. I can't say for certain ;-)
      >
      > Mary Jo
      >
      > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, George Walton <iambiguously@y...>
      > wrote:
      > > Ingenuity leaps to mind. ; )
      > >
      > > Mary Jo Malo <alcyon11@y...> wrote:Biggie,
      > >
      > > I admire your integrity, or is that stubborness?
      > >
      > > Jo
      > >
      > > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, George Walton
      <iambiguously@y...>
      > > wrote:
      > > > Mary Jo,
      > > >
      > > > Yes, from time to time I too feel compelled to squeak [and
      > squawk]
      > > in Existlist. If for no other reason it's one of the few venues
      in
      > > all of Cyberspace where I have not been kicked out. ; )
      > > >
      > > > Actually, I am just doing some recon for David and Annie. I'm
      > kind
      > > of a recruiter now for The Troupe. I plop down particularly bleak
      > > nihilistic rants---thus the preponderance of Emile Cioran---as
      > bait.
      > > Just trying to ensnare fellow nihilists, as it were.
      > > >
      > > > I'm beginning to think however that, alas, all 9 of us are
      > already
      > > ensnared!! Still, I sneak the occasional peak at posts from you
      > and
      > > Bill and Eduard etc to see if any of you have finally collapsed.
      > > >
      > > > Not so far, but God willing....
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > Biggie
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > Mary Jo Malo <alcyon11@y...> wrote:
      > > > squeak
      > > >
      > > > Yes.
      > > >
      > > > Jo
      > > >
      > > > --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "iambiguously"
      > > <iambiguously@y...>
      > > > wrote:
      > > > > From Simon Critchley's "Very Little...Almost Nothing":
      > > > >
      > > > > "We cannot speak of that which we would like to speak...and
      yet
      > > we
      > > > > cannot not speak, blissful though this might seem: 'you must
      go
      > > on,
      > > > I
      > > > > can't go on, I'll go on'. There is only this voice, this
      > > > meaningless
      > > > > voice 'which prevents you from being nothing' and all it has
      > are
      > > > > words 'and not many of them'. And even when Malone writes 'I
      am
      > > > lost,
      > > > > not a word..or Krapp says 'Nothing to say, not a squeak',
      this
      > is
      > > > not
      > > > > yet silence, it is yet a word, a squeak."
      > > > >
      > > > > Yet lots and lots of things can be named, of course. And with
      a
      > > > > rather high degree of objectivity: rock, tree, mountain,
      > gravity,
      > > > > molecule, arm, lightning, tornado, felatio, flute, rape,
      fetus,
      > > > Iraq,
      > > > > Congress, dictionary.
      > > > >
      > > > > Most of the words we use from day to day, in fact, are merely
      > > > > understood to mean what they do and almost no one questions
      it.
      > > Nor
      > > > > should they. They simply describe what is.
      > > > >
      > > > > But there are also words that name only what we think they
      mean-
      > --
      > > > and
      > > > > can never name more; words that can never be denoted
      > objectively:
      > > > > freedom, justice, right, wrong, good, bad...truth...being and
      > > > > nothingness. In fact, many of the words used to discuss human
      > > moral
      > > > > and political interaction, emotional and psychological
      states,
      > > > > identity, aesthetics, ontology, teleology etc. really are
      just
      > > > > squeaks for all intents and purposes. Yet these, alas, are
      the
      > > most
      > > > > important words of all in venues like this one.
      > > > >
      > > > > Right?
      > > > >
      > > > > Biggie
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
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