We have always thought the world was made of discrete objects, and interactions happened between individuals that existed prior to the exchanges. But what would we think if our frames of reference were disrupted by a new, convincing theory that asserts the exact opposite, namely that individuals exist because of the existence of given interactions: and, furthermore, that even matter exists as a phenomenon, i.e. as the materialization of relationships?
— from an interview with Karen Barad by Adam Kleinman in mousse 34 (my italics)
Op mijn uitvaart
O, de dragers, ze zullen
mijn moeheid voelen
Eérste, zal je
— Levi Weemoedt
tree of the year
congratulations to this awesome oak on the A58 near ulvenhout that just took out the prestigious tree of the year prize! not sure what the prize is but well done you! 🎉🎂🎈what an achievement!
ps they wouldn’t chop down the tree of the year because the road needs widening would they? or maybe they will just wait until next year and then say, ah well it’s not the tree of the year anymore is it?
On the fruiting structures of mycorrhizal networks
Our toes, our noses
Take hold on the loam,
Nudgers and shovers
In spite of ourselves.
Our kind multiplies:
We shall by morning
Inherit the earth.
— Sylvia Plath
One of the joys of spending six weeks walking in Dutch forests was encountering funghi, mushrooms, paddestoelen in het Nederlands — that is toadstools, but who would call them that now? For Miriam Darlington, who wrote this lovely piece in the Times today, they are “the fruiting structures of vast mycorrhizal networks lying unseen beneath the soil.”
It was a serious thrill spotting fly agarics and one time, walking with Fieke and Misch, we saw an enormous one. It was as big as a human head but flat and it said ‘Eat me, eat me!’ but the article says you shouldn’t which is probably sound advice since they are toxic and can paralyse the nervous system. People used to break them up and put them in milk to kill flies and the Vikings would eat them and go berserk and kill everyone.
The fly agaric can also be used to produce “purging and intense emotional states”. Various studies are being conducted by scientists to investigate the benefits of psilocybin for people suffering depression, anxiety and existential angst but they use psilocybin synthesised in a laboratory.
Humans who think/feel that they would benefit from some purging and/or experiencing intense emotional states might be better off using the sclerotia, the persistent, vegetative, resting spores of certain fungi which contain psilocybin. In The Netherlands these are grown commercially and sold in ‘smart’ shops, but they are probably illegal in the ‘normal’ world.
Goodnight Jos Alderse Baas (1957 - 2018).
In een passage uit zijn lezing `Wissenschaft als Beruf´ uit 1922 spreekt Max Weber over de onttovering van de wereld. Volgens Weber leiden de toenemende intellectualisering en rationalisering niet zozeer tot meer kennis van de manier waarop we in het leven staan: ze leiden veeleer tot het rationele geloof dat het leven geen principiële geheimen meer voor ons heeft. Dat we uiteindelijk alles door nadenken kunnen beheersen. Weber wijst erop dat door dit rationele geloof het besef van magie verloren gaat, de toegang tot de wereld van de geesten.
— via Maxim Februari Pianissimo Nexus, 55, themanummer Hoop en vertroosting, 2010, pp 160-164 link
An entirely different realm
Everyone wants to believe in something. I want to believe in m-theory, one of the theories in quantum physics. M-theory proposes that there are eleven dimensions and ten-to-the-power-of-five-hundred universes, all running in parallel to this one. But only electrons are able to move between them. And yet to me it seems as if, on rare occasions, we get a sense of one of the other universes, like the feeling when you experience déjà vu. It’s a glimpse … or glimmer. And sometimes it’s almost as if you’re presented with an opportunity to sidestep into one of the parallel universes, or we encounter a wormhole and we just fall through it, into an entirely different realm.
I like the word ‘realm’. It contains the word ‘real’, and I believe the realm in which we dwell is culturally determined. It’s the result of our understanding of reality and our belief system, and the history of that understanding and belief system. I want to believe that if we change our idea about reality and how it works and what it is, as a result of a realisation, we can find ourselves in a different realm.
i am here
A.L. Snijders : De zinloosheid van het leven
Hij slaat de plank nét mis — en volgens mij doet hij dat meer mij wijze van een soort performance — maar het is wel leuk om te lezen.
the soles of john lennon’s feet
In Russian there are two words for truth. The one most people know is pravda, which is the kind of ‘truth’ associated with the eponymous Communist Party newspaper, but the ‘real’ truth, the underlying, cosmic, unshakable truth of things is Истина : istina.
more than half a million animals are killed each day to provide meat for humans in the netherlands.
there was a long, sad story in de volkskrant magazine last weekend about my favourite writer in het nederlands, maarten biesheuvel, 84. he has not been well. for some reason i thought he’d overcome his madness, but apparently not — and he can’t write anymore.
here is biesheuvel at the height of his powers : het wonder from 1995, which begins :
Vader; je bent nu dood, maar deze geschiedenis herinner je je nog wel: Het was een wonderschone dag toen jij en ik op stap; op vakantie gingen.
Father you are dead now but you’ll remember this story: It was a beautiful day when you and I went away on holiday.
(apologies for the inadequate translation — and for taking the liberty of removing the extremely idiosyncratic punctuation :p)
i had a nice interaction with someone in australia. i was talking to my bank and when they were spelling out my postcode they said ‘K for kangaroo?’ it sounded so lovely. at the end they asked, is there anything else i can do for you? and i said, can you say ‘kangaroo’ again? and then they said it. it was quite moving 😢