Subobjectives

Subjective truth and objective truth coexist. Subjective truth exists within linear time and objective truth exists without linear time. The objectivity of the statement “subjective truth and objective truth coexist” does not disprove it, and likewise the objectivity of the statement “subjective truth exists” does not disprove it. Finally, the objectivity of the statement “objective truth exists” does not prove its existence.

The proof that subjective truth exists is that I say it does. Nothing else is required for its existence. Subjectivity is creativity; thought makes a something from a nothing. I think “subjective truth” and it exists in my mind. You think, “subjective truth does not exist”, and therefore it doesn’t. It’s subjective. Today it exists and tomorrow it doesn’t. Today I like fish, and tomorrow I don’t because the fishy flavor is suddenly too strong for my palate. Today I love her, and tomorrow I ignore her. Subjectivity equals change or flux; I myself am subjective, and you may claim that you aren’t, but by that you only prove that mankind is subject to variation. Actually, you didn’t prove this; I did by setting up this badly constructed, subjective argument. And therefore, subjectivity. Some weirdly solipsistic person might argue that linear time can’t be proved to exist, but this is a needless argument because I say time exists, and I say it exists subjectively. And therefore, subjectivity. You then argue that my statements about subjectivity are objective, but this is fruitless because tomorrow I may take all these assertions back. My argument is not strong, but it doesn’t matter. In any case, philosophy through the ages has waffled back and forth about this. And therefore, subjectivity. All of history, all of my life, all of yesterday, all of this minute, time exists subjectively. And therefore, subjectivity.

Emotions are subject to change and variation too. Age breeds resentment and cynicism. The willful inhaling of memories strains to undo the hoary growth of tumors, the seeds of which were planted by all kinds of abuse. Prideful Eros champions ecstasy yesterday, and today she wears only the shame of the bed covers, and yet “shame is pride’s cloak”, according to Blake. Self-hate is really self-love, but twisted; self-Eros instead of self-charity. Self-Eros gives birth to the most sublime and subversive artworks, but they are bastard. Yet only the pit of human depravity can make a true, subjective artwork that gropes desperately for the objective. This is because the true artwork itself is trapped in self-Eros, but it longs for self-charity, as man does. It can never begin as self-charity, because then it only condescends. “Blessed are those who thirst and hunger after righteousness.”

Notice the time-specific language we can’t avoid writing in to describe subjective experience.

Objectivity can only come in the form of a revelation from God. Kierkegaard talks about this, although not exactly in those terms. I can’t prove objectivity except by directing the reader towards God. Do not underestimate the importance of this, or dismiss it for any number of the reasons modern thought may dismiss it. Examine what you must examine.

Because we’re bound by linear time, the idea of a God unbound by anything isn’t comprehensible to us. And yet we get glimpses. I don’t remember being born, and I can’t comprehend the idea of being dead. This is all within my linear experience, but only the events on the timeline of life are what we experience as linear. The start and finish are unknown, and so we get a glimpse of infinity, of timelessness, of objectivity. We glimpse it in the fact that we can’t glimpse anything in particular. My experience of time is a one-dimensional line; the terminations of the line (birth/death) are non-existent in my experience of it. In theory the terminations exist, which would prove that I’m mortal, but I can’t comprehend their existence experientially, and so somehow, in a weird way, I can’t comprehend my mortality just as much as I can’t comprehend my immortality.

The only other proof of objectivity is in disciplines other than philosophy or religion. Math suggests objectivity more strongly than any other discipline. The controversy occurs when we try to apply these rules to metaphysical questions. Ironically, then, objectivity does exist outside of religion, but objectivity can only exist in philosophy through divine revelation. Using the objectivity of math and science to try to prove metaphysical questions is like trying to cook a frying pan on an egg. The egg will cook, but no thanks to the frying pan; it will cook and probably disintegrate because it’s pinned between the pan and the burner. Math and science exist within the universe, but to try to explain metaphysical questions with them is as absurd as this bad cooking analogy. Math and science is the framework upon which all our experience and the entire physical universe and all of linear time are built, but they don’t answer the question of why. Phenomenology is by nature a defeat because it digresses to simply observe; it’s inherently cowardly. The objectivity of math and science may be a glimpse into the divine objectivity, but they can never disprove it, as if some sort of evolutionary incumbent. True objectivity only comes from divine revelation, and the proof of this is only in the revelation itself. This, contrastingly, takes courage to accept.

But why bring such fickle, subjective emotions as courage and cowardice into this discussion? Because my understanding of all of this occurs in subjective, linear time, and so I must use all of my faculties: my reason, my emotion, my sense, my intuition. This is why, when we consider these questions, we need to consider divine revelation, because only divine revelation marries all human faculty into coherence. All other explanations for truth, be it objective or subjective, err on any and all sides of human faculty. The revelation of scripture marries them all, because it’s a revelation from God, who isn’t bound by all these human faculties; he supersedes them.

Subjective truth and objective truth coexist. Subjective truth exists within linear time and objective truth exists without linear time.

Catherine

Sea-bald claymore,

Your name, called sea

Be protector

Trajectory

 

I, mere sailor

For bail, fear-eye,

Try endlessly

She, dressed in sky:

 

Catherinest,

Jesting her path:

Math apart from

Sum-heart Sabbath,

 

She multiplies,

Plies ship hull scree –

Hell, she goes free.

She knows me well.

 

But stout hearts end,

Bend arts, out shut

Put faces, but

What essays trust?

 

Sea-bald claymore,

Your name, called she

Sea-edge Catherine

In tragedy.

Wedding Gifts for Widowers

You dream of a world

Of wedding gifts for widowers

Where the solitary tarriers

And the backyard universe

Carriers, fighting cosmic,

Can blood the status qualm,

Seismic, utilitieless –

 

But the earth, the form

Moves not outside, but instead

All your dreaming forms.

Illusioned/Illumined

Only a year out from college, I already recall the experience as something distant. The social environment is so wholly different than life after. Today, again in my favorite coffee shop (and noticing that the taste has improved since the ownership changed), I observed a social interaction perfectly commonplace in a college town like this. A young student came in and ordered coffee, and then proceeded to sheepishly ask the barista, “I have kind of a weird question…is it ok if I take your picture? It’s for a class. “Do I have to pose?” “No, not at all, I just need a shot of someone working.” “Of course.”

As much as I spent many of my college years despising the money-pit, bend-over nature of the education business, I do miss this strange alternate culture that higher education creates. Thankfully for now I’m still in the area and can observe it. This feeling almost harkens back to days of playing house in the backyard. Kids spend their childhoods imagining adult life, and imaginatively living out adult life the way a kid would if he were somehow an adult. And too, in college, we do the same. We’re truly on our own for the first time. The experience bears a strange, legitimate affinity with that childhood game. This is the first time the game is fully realized by the child. Truly alone and left to his own wits and untested adult sensibilities, the college student is free to roam in the adult world, still possessing some kind of illusioned, unconscious perception of this world. Classes dictate certain things, and a student finds himself asking that awkward question, and managing to navigate into a pleasant conversation with a stranger. Travel five miles away from this cultural petri dish, and you won’t find an interaction like this for months. I’m sure the 2-3 mile square radius of college kid mobility contains several of these interactions per day.

I wish I could remain in this state. I wish I could motivate myself strongly enough to continue my self-education in a way that gives me the courage to participate in this illusioned culture. Not because it is itself an illusion. The disillusionment of the illusion of the openness of the world hasn’t yet overcome these students. Education is still The Sword. Exploration and understanding and place and sex and beauty and friendship are still theirs to create. True, the devil is fighting here in this town, but so is The Counselor. The battle is everywhere, and here, at least, the openness of the world is almost illumined into reality. The sin may be greater, and the virtue not a match for it, but as Kierkegaard wants us to know, the opposite of sin is not virtue but faith. And in the midst of disbelief and doubt, faith truly does grow here. Like a weed it spreads through the sewers and forgotten catacombs underneath these crumbling walls, and breaths The Hallelujah into hopeless certainties and illusioned imaginations alike. Yes, the sin here is greater, and the faith too. Virtue grows where it may. It certainly does not grow in the lecture halls, though it thrives in the suburbs.

The clouds here are strung out like grey-blue squid tentacles. Or like behemoth branches miles above the city that mirror the permeating roots beneath it. The clouds change shape, and so does faith, so do the roots as they grow, as they are nourished or famished. An illumined reality will exist whether or not our faith in it remains constant. But somehow, faith is what brings it into being. For now I only get glimpses of it in the illusion of an educational microcosm. I didn’t know, and I don’t know…no, but we will.