Cracks and Bridges (symbols)

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by Julie H, Jun 17, 2017.

  1. One of the definitions of great architecture is if it " still great as a ruin." Perhaps what our modern cities are missing are great ruins? We routinely design buildings with an intended life expectancy of 50 years. Most minor buildings don't make it even that long, and the materials used in many modern buildings are only viable for about that long. We live in a world that has become acquisitive of the disposable. Those artifacts that outlive their first use are becoming rare, and collectible, while the objects around which our lives seem to revolve, such as cell phones, cars, etc., are tossed away in a moment. It will be very interesting to see in the coming years if we re-evaluate our valuation of things, or if the cycle of acquisition and disposal continues to accelerate.
  2. Norman

    Norman Norman T Naffington

    david, if it's not too much to ask, could you stop mentioning architecture in every post u make? or, at least, get Jules/Sup. to p…
  3. I think the architecture of the future will be more adaptable to changing needs, rather than disposable. There are skyscrapers being built that incorporate vegetation like a living organism. Cities around the world will become these huge interconnected hubs without boundaries.

    Time is a passageway.

    DavidTriplett likes this.
  4. Norman

    Norman Norman T Naffington

    cool , and cheap at 1/2 the price. no doubt phil's sales are going to pay for them.
  5. David, I like your third photo. It has so much dynamism going on. The mountains and the valley seem so alive. We have a phrase in my native language, "to view the ocean in a water drop". This huge glacial valley started with a few cracks in the ground, the embryo. If I am allowed to reach a little further, the shape of the canyon in your photo is reminiscent of a womb.
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  6. Never heard of Octavio Paz?
    Octavio Paz - Biographical

    Honestly, I didn't find the poems that hard to decipher. If there is any doubt, the text quoted right below the first poem expands and provides hints that are hard to miss. As for the second poem, poetry fills the space between our conscious outer world and inner world of thoughts and imaginations. If I think of it further, poetry fills the crack/fissure between both worlds, and like David's glacial valley, expands and grows. A poet can realize that by looking at the crack in a teacup. That was IMO the point of the first poem.
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  7. Norman

    Norman Norman T Naffington

    c'mon supriyo, don't be so derogatory. everyone's heard of OP
  8. I have a longish post to follow this one that will be, as it should be, on the topic: Cracks and Bridges in the Philosophy of Photography forum. For those of you who've contributed to the discussion of that subject so far, thank you! Please wait about twenty minutes for me to get my post semi-organized and posted, below. But first, this has to be said:

    As I've noted a number of times before, it absolutely fascinates me that people who hate my posts nevertheless read them obsessively, and seem to hang on my every word. If you don't like what I write, don't read it. How hard is that? I will continue to write what I want to in the way I want to write it — on the topics posted.

    If my words make you unhappy, click on my avatar and do this:


    Thank you!
  9. something wants to get out

    Science describes cracks in mathematical terms that have to do with tension and compression and material strength. It's all dry and tidy and "just" physics. That's not as it should be. Physics should be scary: you should feel it. Because:

    something wants to get out.

    I love that. Think about it in conjunction with an egg hatching. What is it about the crack(s) that is so interesting? Is it what we know, or what we don't know about what's happening?

    something wants to get out

    There is *something* important (dangerous? desirable?) on the other side. Even in a teacup that cracks, it's not the tea that makes the crack fascinate us: it's that it's not the tea, because we've had tea in that cup a thousand times before and it didn't crack.

    something wants to get out

    When Doris Salcedo installed an enormous crack in the floor of Tate Modern, it was noticed that, in addition to people being fascinated by and/or fearful of the crack, many of them went to great lengths (lying or kneeling on the floor) to see what was inside of the crack.

    something wants to get out
  10. Butt cracks are beautiful. Or at the very worst, very interesting. You have to look.


    That was the origin of my post just prior to this one. Why do butt cracks draw the eye?

    First I'm thinking, because they point to genitalia, because excreting is funny, because they are the join (bridge) of the two legs, because they're not supposed to be seen. And I'm thinking ... [shaking my head]. No ... that's not it. If there were only one butt bump and no crack, it wouldn't work (there are creatures like this: with just a hole and no crack). There's something about cracks ... a single big butt or breast with no crack is just a bump. A crack has two not-quite matching sides that need each other (otherwise it becomes a hole, which is "damage" which can be purely accidental). Not parallel, and not too far apart. And you can't see inside.

    Good thing that wasn't what I posted. :)

    [again, thank you for those who are contributing pictures and thoughtful discussion to the topic]
  11. Norman, if you go onto read the rest of my post, I was actually agreeing with you. I was cautioning against getting hung up on the word "prove" as a means not to take up your challenge to spell out why someone is thought to be creative. Just because someone's creativity may not be provable in the same, formal way as a mathematical proof doesn't mean one can get away with calling anyone they want "creative" without backing it up. I was suggesting that creativity has certain qualities and that those qualities could be looked for and enumerated with reference to the so-called creative person's work. Instead, what normally seems to occur is that the word "creative" gets tossed around like hot dogs at a picnic and loses all sense of meaning, purpose, and significance. Kind of like what happens to art in many circles. Everyone's an artist, so art loses in the end.
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  12. Norman

    Norman Norman T Naffington

    the best cracks aren't the most immediately obvious

  13. Norman

    Norman Norman T Naffington

    ditto. took mea while to find. cheers bill.

  14. Actually, physics gives an answer to that question. What wants to get out is energy, and sometimes more crack. Cracks have a past history filled with tension and stress, and all that is released in an instant creating a crack. In that way, a crack can be (not always) relatively at peace with its surrounding. That's physics, but an amusing analogy may be drawn with our perception of cracks as follows.

    First off, symbolically, the released energy can be emotion, lost memory that wants to get out. Cracks can release tension caused by the mismatch between old and new, nature vs manufactured. Photo of a flawless building that is perceived as old can seem out of place. Same goes with a shiny teacup left in the woods. In both cases, mismatch between the subject and its environment builds up tension, which is partly eased by the appearance of cracks, analogous to the physics based process. This is however only a partial take on the topic. How a crack is perceived in a photo will depend on a lot of factors contributed by the context, surroundings of the crack etc.
    DavidTriplett likes this.
  15. At risk of annoying the bejesus out of Supriyo, scientists don't actually know what energy "is." o_O

    I am told that by scientists (amazingly, I don't know what it "is" either). They do know that it is always conserved.
  16. No annoyance Julie. We sometimes draw analogy between events that we don't completely understand, but can still feel and perceive. Its fun, and sometimes insightful.

    Energy is the ability to do work (mental or physical), and be active. I think, that part of the energy understanding is common between science and philosophy. :)

    Science is very good at taking inventory of what we understand and what we don't. Philosophy then questions, what is understanding itself. I think both are necessary to keep a check on each another.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2017
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  17. Ahem. I think they enjoy specifically not making claims about "understanding." For example, in quantum physics, most of them will tell you they have no understanding — in the sense of being able to "see" the stuff in their mind — of what they know. This does ... bother many of them, but it 's not a problem for science.
  18. When I said understanding, I meant scientific understanding, not metaphysical understanding. To me (and to many scientists I know), scientific understanding is to know the mechanism that can explain observable data. Thats why I said, they have a good idea of what they don't understand as well (which would be the lack of a mechanism or model that explains observations). Such an understanding is subject to change if new data comes up. The question is, whether such an understanding is really anything at all. Thats why I said, science and philosophy keep a check on each other.

    IMO, the quantum physicist who says he/she cannot 'see the stuff in their mind' is of course trying to map an intangible concept onto the observable world. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, but I wouldn't call that evidence of lack of understanding.

    One example, if its not too much digression. General relativity is based on the premise that speed of light in vacuum is constant at all reference frames (whether you are moving, or standing still, speed of light will look the same to you). All the nice results and predictions on the universe are based on that assumption. A lot of understanding of cosmological phenomena comes from that premise. However scientists doesn't understand why light behaves in such a way, and they know they don't. This is an example of what science understands and what it doesn't. However, you can always argue that is no understanding, since the premise is not understood.
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  19. Supriyo, I think, I think ... (checking again), I completely agree with your entire post #58.

    I hope my previous did not in any way suggest to other readers that I devalue science. I love science. It is that from which all understanding must begin.
  20. Again, you don't define what that is just on what you observe. It's too broad and subjective.

    And to be clear what you are really seeing since I'm the one posting it is my seeing a lack by those of knowing how to play the room or what I call a lack of effective communication.

    But, Phil, I do have to thank you for being my antagonistic muse or else I wouldn't have spent one second responding to this thread.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2017

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