By Brian George
If human meaning is the shadow of a shadow, how far back must we go to discover the source of illumination? A moon has obscured the superconscious sun.
Is knowledge of the world a matter of addition or subtraction? If the world is a subject, should the self then be regarded as on object? The self obeys the tutelary genius that has covered up its eyes. Existence is a phenomenon whose essence has already—and long since!—passed from view. Presence articulates its plan through absence, as a cargo cult sets fire to the few remaining books, and whole continents and their peoples are removed. Nature’s death suggests that there may be something wrong.
In fact, the error is a basic one—far older than the universe itself—and would seem to be implanted in our DNA. It is as follows: that the one is a number. The correct view is as follows: that the number one is not actually a number. It does not grow bigger when it is added to itself. So too, it can never become smaller. How strange that the simplest thing is also the most complex! Thus, as with the one, we cannot observe too directly the configuration of the self.
At the end of the world, there is never more than one consciousness left standing. There is no hook in the sky upon which to hang one’s hat. A Promethean technocracy floats on the pregnant waters of illusion. Signs camouflage the perfect guardians of the Zodiac. Though they know all, they are empty. Of the meaning of a life we can only say: “It was.”
(Illustration: Rene Magritte)