You Begin From Within The Part That You Are Whole In

Judgment Day Conversation Continues
Presentation Of My Freedom Philosophy—First Attempt

“I guess you could say, I replied, “that it all began with my
discovery of how freedom coexists within the physical constraints of
cause and effect. Freedom got a whole lot more meaningful after that.”

“How so?” said MV.

“Well, as best I can remember,” I said, “it all had to do with how
different types of freedom come together in our day to day experience.
Our sensed freedom—the freedom to avoid the unpleasant while pursuing
the pleasant—for instance, had the indirect effect of creating the
environment where all our other freedoms get expressed. We are free,
for example, to question our place in the environment and, hopefully,
those investigations lead us to the further discoveries of reliable
predictions concerning our environment. As knowledge accumulates,
expectations and goals change. The value and meaning of relationships
change. What at one time was sought for pleasure becomes unattractive
and so on and so forth. Sociologically, as regards the logically
consistent answers to our questions, we are free to change our
behavior. We are free to grow wiser and emotionally mature. What all
this means for freedom, and this is what I tried to communicate in my
presentation way back when, is that the dynamic of freedom must be
understood in terms of a liberation process that is in constant flux,
especially if one values freedom!”

“Okay, I kind of get it,” MV replied, “so how did it go?”


“The presentation,” MV responded, “How did it go?”

“Why ask me? You were there!” I said. “It went fine; maybe too good,
in fact.”

“Just because I was a witness doesn’t mean I was `really’ there,”
replied MV. “I’m not your twin, let alone privy to your inner
feelings. So what does `maybe too good’ mean, anyway?”

“For a know-it-all,” I responded, “you’re not very bright. For as
many times as I’ve been at bat on this one, I haven’t exactly hit the
ball very well! My first time was beginner’s luck. The applause at the
end was nice, too.”

“Beginner’s luck,” MV replied. “It’s just that they didn’t get your message, right!”

“Why do you think I stopped giving presentations,” I said. “People
couldn’t or wouldn’t understand. My inability to speak well probably
had something to do with it, though. It wasn’t all a waste; as I said
before, freedom is growth, and I experienced a whole lot of that.”

“Yeah, as I recall, at the presentation you even recited a poem on
the subject,” MV replied.

“That’s right,” I said. “I was lucky to remember it. In fact, the poem
was what made it a good presentation. I invited Dr. Clifford to my talk,
the Professor who taught quantum mechanics at my university, and he brought
with him another physics professor. I guess he was curious, or maybe he just
wanted to pester me with questions. God knows I pestered him with more than a few concerning quantum mechanics. In fact, the questions he asked at the end of my presentation turned out to be instrumental in the development of the ideas that
would later turn into my full-blown philosophy. Unfortunately, at the
time, however, I was only able to answer one of his questions, the one
about “why I do what I do.” I responded by referring to the poem that
Faith Johnson, my long retired Botany teacher, wrote on the blackboard. She loved
teaching so much that with another Professor she team-taught my Botany
class without pay. Back then I could remember the poem. Today, I have
to look to where it hangs on my wall, glued to the letter that confirmed my
CMU janitor’s job. Here it is:

They set the slave free, striking off his chains…
Then he was as much of a slave as ever.
He was still chained to servility,
He was still manacled to indolence and sloth,
He was still bound by fear and superstition,
By ignorance, suspicion, and savagery…
His slavery was not in his chains,
But in himself.
They can only set free men free…
And there is no need to do that;
Free men set themselves free.

James Oppenheim


About bwinwnbwi

About me: Marvin Gaye’s song, "What’s Going On" was playing on the jukebox when I went up to the counter and bought another cup of coffee. When I got back, the painting on the wall next to where I was sitting jumped out at me, the same way it had done many times before. On it was written a diatribe on creativity. It was the quote at the bottom, though, that brought me back to this seat time after time. The quote had to do with infinity; it went something like this: Think of yourself as being in that place where infinity comes together in a point; where the infinite past and the infinite future meet, where you are at right now. The quote was attributed to Hermann Hesse, but I didn’t remember reading it in any of the books that I had read by him, so I went out and bought Hesse’s last novel, Magister Ludi. I haven’t found the quote yet, but I haven't tired of looking for it either.
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4 Responses to You Begin From Within The Part That You Are Whole In

  1. “As knowledge accumulates, expectations and goals change… What at one time was sought for pleasure becomes unattractive and so on and so forth”…I think I’m gonna stop reading you for while…this hurts… It’s true, but doesn’t help.

    • I forgot to put the smiley…there it is 🙂

    • bwinwnbwi says:

      I understand. I totally sympathize! My young brain wrote this stuff, and now my old brain has to deal with it. Even though the X/Y form has much the same meaning as b~b~bb, i.e., our experience of discontinuity occurring in continuity–the part we are whole in–while occurring in continuity occurring in discontinuity–temporal dependent physical events, there is still a subtle difference in meaning. If you imagine the X/Y form as the entrance into b~b~bb then you can also imagine some of the frustration these posts are causing me. Thanks for all your comments and support. I don’t expect this to help but it helped me–more on the X/Y form:

      (-(-(X/Y) (X/Y))(-(X/Y)(X/Y)))=implicative affirmative of the not-me-self, personhood, reason,–ability to make the changes necessary to perpetuate life and civilization while seeking truth, justice, happiness, and spiritual growth….purple quadrant.

      Unfortunately, before I found a way to simplify the X/Y form to ~~b =X/Y, ~bb=~(X/Y)(X/Y), b~b~bb=(-(-(X/Y) (X/Y))(-(X/Y)(X/Y))), I used the X/Y form version in my explanation of the observer/observed relationship—making the communication of this new version of the observer/observed relationship very difficult to wrap one’s mind around; get a feel for; make sense of—in a word, understand. In my defense though, the X/Y form is more a record of the genesis of my version of the observer/observed relationship than it is an explanation of the observer/observed relationship. In other words, the b~b~bb idea would be incomplete without an explanation of its genesis.

  2. The poem spoke and speaks to me. Thank you. Catching up time.

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