About the Psyche and Poetry

August 1, 2009

7d

When I was working on my next blogpost, where I wanted to add ages to the zodiac to visualise different stages of human development, I was using words like spirit and soul all the time. But as those have so much different meanings, I thought it might be better first to clarify how I mean them. I did so before in a blogpost I wrote a year ago, read it again many time, but get confused every time myself when I do so. Now I thought to write the post again and try to follow the thought process more close. The core of the blogpost is a text I got from a book, which I will try to analyze more profound this time.
This is what I wrote:
What is on my mind, is something that is on my mind for years now. It is something I read a few years ago in a book by a Dutch writer, George Bode. His thinking is mainly based on the thoughts of a French philosopher, Jean Carteret. As far as I know, nothing is written on paper by Carteret, but Bode wrote a book called: ‘Het poetische denken van Jean Carteret’. A book in which Bode tries to give an impression of the thought process of Carteret. Deeply hidden in that book was the following (English translation of the Dutch writings of a French thoughtprocess, so something might get lost here):
Reading it again makes me realise it indeed is very difficult to use the right words in a translation. Especially when it comes to words that are about such invisable subjects like emotions or a soul. So here is the text, that I wrote almost exactly as it is in the book. Which sometimes is confusing in itself, as some words have a different meaning (even asside from different people) in different languages.
At a certain moment Carteret was very impressed by a line in Jungs book ‘Man and his symbols’: Matter and psyche are two aspects of one and the same phenomenon. Superficially from this comes that matter obvious is the visable side of the psyche. But if one stays in this stage, it becomes a formula and becomes a presence where you cannot go about. That never happened to Carteret, therefore was his analyzing quality to good. His second association by the phrase of Jung was: matter and psyche are sort of the same, but matter is also energy.
So this search from Carteret started with 3 subjects: matter, psyche and energy. And he tries to analyze the difference between the viewpoint of ‘science’ and ‘psychology’. So according to psychology the opposite of matter is the psyche. But according to science the opposite is already taken, because that is energy. Now, in the next part, he is going to arrange them all three and then finds out that something is missing.
Coming from this scientific fact, he then formulated: the energy in the matter can be seen as workable infinity, an infinity in action. And matter is a condition of limitation. So there is a couple of matter/energy and besides that there is also the psyche. But psyche also is invisible like energy. Psyche, which is an inner concept, asks for a fourth concept, that is to the psyche what energy is to matter.
I think what he says here is very important, but also very difficult to describe in the right words. First he looks at the couple matter and energy. He says matter is a condition of limitation, which means that as opposite to energy, that it is not infinite, not without end, and besides that it, it also is the opposite of active, which he calls here a condition. So the words he uses (I think) are infinite and action for energy, and limitation and condition for matter. Now the other concept, psyche, has one characteristic from both. It is infinite like energy (I wrote here invisible, but I am not sure anymore what it said in dutch) and it is the opposite of action, called condition here. So in order to make it fit, he needs a concept that has the opposite of infinite and condition. And it has to have the characteristics limitation and active.
The search for this fourth concept could start, a search which could take weeks, sometimes even months. But also sometimes only a blink of an eye. The latter was what happend here. Suddenly he thought of something from the psychiater Lacan about language. And apart from how Lacan meant that, he had found his fourth concept to use in a dialectic.
So this concept he found was language. Language that has the characteristics limitiation and action.
He formulated it about this: Matter is the ‘condition’ of ‘limitation’ from an ‘infinity’ in ‘action’ (energy). Psyche is just like energy an ‘infinity’ but a ‘condition’ of infinity. And language is the ‘condition’ in ‘action’.
So what he says is: matter is the conditioned limitation of the active infinitive energy as language is the active limitation of the conditioned infinitive psyche.
Because the psyche is the oceanic infinity and the ocean does not move, while on the contrairy the rivers do. So the psyche is the ‘condition’ of ‘infinity’ of which language is the ‘condition’ in ‘action’. So on one hand as a physical aspect of the world, there is the couple matter/energy: a condition of limitation and an infinity in action. And on the other hand, complemantairy to that and as a metafysical aspect, there is the couple psyche/language: a condition of infinity and a limitation that can work on that actively. The result of that, if maximum, is poetry and if this does not work then there is the language that totaly drawns in the actual unspeakable of the psyche, which gives the mystical.
My next step was to search for other words that could be used better for my purpose of describing the human development. The words I chose where as abstract as I could think of, but might not totally be in line with how Carteret might have meant them but I get to that later.
This kept getting around and around in my head for years, and as I was searching for a language to describe the human development, I decided to use body for matter. For energy I used spirit and the language became mind. The psyche Carteret talks about is something I thought could be translated with soul. For action and condition I used active and passive, and infinity and limitation became potential and structure; spirit: active/potential, body: passive/structure, mind: active/structure, soul: passive/potential.
Or in one line:
The Body is the passive structure of the active potential Spirit, as the Mind is the active structure of the passive potential Soul.
Now coming to the end of this long post I realise this is not even enough to clarify the whole zodiac, let alone the human development. In order to do that I need to get into the 3 different stages, that are essential to any development. So the next blogpost is about my understanding of what is called in integral theory, pre- trans fallacy. And in the zodiac primordial, individual and universal.

When I was working on my next blogpost, where I wanted to add ages to visualise different stages of human development, I was using words like spirit and soul all the time. But as those have so many different meanings, I thought it might be better first to clarify how I mean them in this context. I did so before in a blogpost I wrote a year ago, read it again many times, but get confused every time myself when I do so. Now I thought to write the post again and try to follow the thought process more close. The core of the blogpost is a text I got from a book, which I will try to analyze more profound this time.

This is what I wrote:

What is on my mind, is something that is on my mind for years now. It is something I read a few years ago in a book by a Dutch writer, George Bode. His thinking is mainly based on the thoughts of a French philosopher, Jean Carteret. As far as I know, nothing is written on paper by Carteret, but Bode wrote a book called: ‘Het poetische denken van (poetic thinking of) Jean Carteret’.  A book in which Bode tries to give an impression of the thought process of Carteret. Deeply hidden in that book was the following (English translation of the Dutch writings of a French thoughtprocess, so something might get lost here):

Reading it again makes me realise it indeed is very difficult to use the right words in a translation. Especially when it comes to words that are about such invisible subjects like emotions or a soul. So here is the text, that I wrote almost exactly as it is in the book. Which sometimes is confusing in itself, as some words have a different meaning (even aside from different people) in different languages.

“At a certain moment Carteret was very impressed by a line in Jungs book ‘Man and his symbols’: Matter and psyche are two aspects of one and the same phenomenon. Superficially from this comes that matter obvious is the visible side of the psyche. But if one stays in this stage, it becomes a formula and becomes a presence where you cannot go about. That never happened to Carteret, therefore was his analyzing quality to good. His second association by the phrase of Jung was: matter and psyche are sort of the same, but matter is also energy”.

So this search from Carteret started with 3 subjects: matter, psyche and energy. And he tries to analyze the difference between the viewpoint of ‘science’ and ‘psychology’. So according to psychology the opposite of matter is the psyche. But according to science the opposite is already taken, because that is energy. Now, in the next part, he is going to arrange them all three and then finds out that something is missing.

“Carteret then formulated: the energy in the matter can be seen as workable infinity, an infinity in action. And matter is a condition of limitation. So there is a couple of matter/energy and besides that there is also the psyche. But psyche also is invisible like energy. Psyche, which is an inner concept, asks for a fourth concept, that is to the psyche what energy is to matter”.

I think what he says here is very important, but also very difficult to describe in the right words. First he looks at the couple matter and energy. He says matter is a condition of limitation, which means that as opposite to energy, that it is not infinite, not without end, and besides that it, it also is the opposite of active, which he calls here a condition. So the words he uses (I think) are infinite and action for energy, and limitation and condition for matter. Now the other concept, psyche, has one characteristic from both. It is infinite like energy (I wrote here invisible, but I am not sure anymore what it said in dutch) and it is the opposite of action, called condition here. So in order to make it fit, he needs a concept that has the opposite of infinite and condition. And it has to have the characteristics limitation and active.

“The search for this fourth concept could start, a search which could take weeks, sometimes even months. But also sometimes only a blink of an eye. The latter was what happened here. Suddenly he thought of something from the psychiatrist Lacan about language. And apart from how Lacan meant that, he had found his fourth concept to use in a dialectic”.

So this concept he found was language. Language that has the characteristics limitation and action.

“He formulated it about this: Matter is the ‘condition’ of ‘limitation’ from an ‘infinity’ in ‘action’ (energy). Psyche is just like energy an ‘infinity’ but a ‘condition’ of infinity. And language is the ‘condition’ in ‘action’.”

So what he says is: matter is the conditioned limitation of the active infinitive energy as language is the active limitation of the conditioned infinitive psyche.

“Because the psyche is the oceanic infinity and the ocean does not move, while on the contrary the rivers do. So the psyche is the ‘condition’ of ‘infinity’ of which language is the ‘condition’ in ‘action’. So on one hand as a physical aspect of the world, there is the couple matter/energy: a condition of limitation and an infinity in action. And on the other hand, complementary to that and as a metafysical aspect, there is the couple psyche/language: a condition of infinity and a limitation that can work on that actively. The result of that, if maximum, is poetry and if this does not work then there is the language that totaly drawns in the actual unspeakable of the psyche, which gives the mystical”.

My next step was to search for other words that could be used better for my purpose of describing the human development. The words I chose where as abstract as I could think of, but might not totally be in line with how Carteret might have meant them, but I get to that later.

This kept getting around and around in my head for years, and as I was searching for a language to describe the human development, I decided to use body for matter. For energy I used spirit and the language became mind. The psyche Carteret talks about is something I thought could be translated with soul. For action and condition I used active and passive, and infinity and limitation became potential and structure; spirit: active/potential, body: passive/structure, mind: active/structure, soul: passive/potential.

Or in one line:

The Body is the passive structure of the active potential Spirit, as the Mind is the active structure of the passive potential Soul.

Now coming to the end of this long post I realise this is not even enough to clarify the whole zodiac, let alone the human development. In order to do that I need to get into the 3 different stages, that are essential to any development. So the next blogpost is about my understanding of what is called in integral theory, pre- trans rational, and in the zodiac primordial, individual and universal.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: