Archive for the ‘eightfolds’ Category

Seven Sermons to the Dead, V2

March 19, 2019

We must, therefore, distinguish the qualities of the pleroma. The qualities are pairs of opposites, such as—

The Effective and the Ineffective.
Fullness and Emptiness.
Living and Dead.
Difference and Sameness.
Light and Darkness.
The Hot and the Cold.
Force and Matter.
Time and Space.
Good and Evil.
Beauty and Ugliness.
The One and the Many. etc.

— Carl Jung, from Seven Sermons to the Dead

I previously mentioned two fourfolds which are perhaps better combined as an eightfold. These concepts or entities are from Carl Jung’s “Seven Sermons to the Dead”.

To the left are the “principal gods”, who are said to be in one-to-one correspondence with the “world’s measurements”. What then are these measurements? Are they the coordinates of relativistic Space-Time or something else?

  • The God-Sun: The beginning
  • Eros: Binding of two together, outspreading and brightening
  • The Tree of Life: Filling space with bodily forms
  • The Devil: The Void, opening all that is closed, dissolving all formed bodies, and destroyer of everything

And to the right we have:

  • The Pleroma: The spiritual universe as the abode of gods and of the totality of the divine powers and emanations.
  • The Creatura: The living world, subject to perceptual difference, distinction, and information
  • Abraxas: The supreme power of being transcending all divinities and demons and uniting all opposites into one
  • Philemon: Jung’s spiritual guide and the narrator, also said to be Simon Magus or Basilides

Further Reading:

[*10.76, *11.49]




The Visions of W. B. Yeats

March 8, 2019

William Butler Yeats published two editions of his book, “A Vision”, the first in 1925 and the second in 1937. They are interesting amalgamations of metaphysics, poetry and esoteric speculations. After years of neglect I return to mention these works briefly.

Previously I showed the fourfold of the Faculties (Creative Mind, Body of Fate, Mask, and Will), but ignored the complementary fourfold of the Principles (Spirit, Celestial Body, Passionate Body, and the Husk). Here I present an eightfold of both Faculties and Principles, and it makes a bit more sense with all its accompanying structure.

Each of these eight elements has certain dual properties which I have indicated by the second diagram: Primary (+) vs. Antithetical (/), Solar (Sun) vs. Lunar (Moon), Static (=) vs. Active (~). Primary is also called Objective, Antithetical is also called Subjective, Solar is also called Core, and Lunar is also called Changing.

In my diagram I have the Faculties as down-pointing triangles (+ and /) and the Principles as up-pointing triangles (Sun and Moon). Elements that are Active (~) are in the upper-left and lower-right squares and those that are Static (=) are in upper-right and lower-left. Since explanations of these elements usually involve interpenetrating cones and gyres and such, whether this diagram has any value is left for a later time.

I also just found out that Neil Mann, the author of the excellent and enduring web site about “A Vision”, has a new book out. It’s called “A Reader’s Guide to Yeats’s ‘A Vision'” and is published by Clemson University Press. It’s a bit pricey but I’m sure it’s full of valuable insights into these works. Perhaps I’ll just have to raid my piggy bank.

Further Reading:;

[*7.199, *7.200, *8.1, *11.56]


Four New Synthetic Base Pairs Added to DNA

February 27, 2019

All life on earth uses DNA with four types of base molecules arranged in a “double helix” to encode information as sequences of Adenine-Thymine (A-T) and Cytosine-Guanine (C-G) pairs. Because A pairs only with T and C only pairs with G, DNA can be split into two halves and then each half may be completed so that two double helices with the same information can be obtained. Nature also uses the “genetic code” to translate the information in DNA into specific amino acids via its molecular machinery that assembles proteins in the correct sequence.

Now scientists have doubled the number of base pairs of DNA by adding four synthetic ones to the original four natural ones. Four new base molecules S (a Pseudo-T), B (a Pseudo-B), Z (a Pseudo-C), and P (a Pseudo-G) have been created so that S only pairs with B and Z pairs only with P. Now you have twice as many options as you had before and so this “hachimoji” (eight letter) DNA can have much greater information density. Plus if you re-engineer the molecular machinery to use these new bases you can have a brand new extended genetic code to build all sorts of synthetic proteins.

Further Reading:




February 25, 2019

Octonions are the fourth, the last, and the greatest of the so-called normed division algebras based on the Real numbers. When I first learned about the Octonions way back when, I didn’t like them because they weren’t associative like the Quaternions, the Complex numbers, and the Reals. But now I’m fine with that, and they may be important for new theories of physics!

Octonions have the general form:

a0e0 + a1e1 + a2e2 + a3e3 + a4e4 + a5e5 + a6e6 + a7e7

Where the coefficients ai are Real and the bases ei have (something like) the following relations:

e0 = 1 (and -1 = e12 = e22 = …)

e1 = I = e2e3 = e7e6 = e4e5

e2 = J = e5e7 = e3e1 = e4e6

e3 = IJ = e1e2 = e6e5 = e4e7

e4 = K = e5e1 = e6e2 = e7e3

e5 = IK = e7e2 = e1e4 = e3e6

e6 = JK =e5e3 = e1e7 = e2e4

e7 = IJK = e6e1 = e3e4 = e2e5

In addition, if any of the products like e2e3 = e1 are reversed you get the negative, so e3e2 = -e1.

Non-associativity is demonstrated by going through the list of triples:

(e1e2)e3 = e32 = -1

e1(e2e3) = e12 = -1

(e1e2)e4 = e3e4 = e7

e1(e2e4) = e1e6 = -e7

(e1e2)e5 = e3e5 = -e6

e1(e2e5) = e1e7 = e6

so it is hit or miss I guess. Also note that e7 = (IJ)K = -I(JK). And for all (eiej)ek and ei(ejek), if they are not equal, is one equal to the negative of the other? And do I have to multiply them all out to find out?

Further Reading:



Spiral Dynamics

February 21, 2019

Spiral Dynamics is an intriguing model for the different levels of development and interaction that individuals (and even cultures) may exhibit towards each other and the world. It has interesting parallels to Erikson’s Eight Stages of Psychosocial Development and even Leary’s Eight Brain Circuit Model of Consciousness.

Below is a list of these levels by (Catchy) Name, Social Structure, Motives, and Means of Coping:

  • SurvivalSense, Loose Bands, Survival, Instinctive
  • KinSpirits, Tribes, Magic/Safety, Animistic
  • PowerGods, Empires, Power/Dominance, Egocentric
  • TruthForce, Pyramidal, Order/Morality, Absolutistic
  • StriveDrive, Delegative, Autonomy/Achievement, Multiplistic
  • HumanBond, Egalitarian, Approval/Equality/Community, Relativistic
  • FlexFlow, Interactive, Adaptability/Integration, Systemic
  • GlobalView, Global, Compassion/Harmony, Holistic

And maybe another, further step if we don’t destroy ourselves and the Earth by just being stupid.

Further Reading:

Don Edward Beck, Christopher C. Cowan / Spiral Dynamics: mastering values, leadership and change

Don Edward Beck, et. al. / Spiral Dynamics in Action: humanity’s master code

[*11.41, *11.45]


Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences

February 16, 2019

Next we examine (oh so superficially!) Howard Gardner’s Theory of Eight(-ish) Multiple Intelligences. To wit (ha-ha):

  • Intra-personal
  • Interpersonal
  • Bodily-kinesthetic
  • Nature-existential
  • Visual-spatial
  • Verbal-linguistic
  • Musical-rhythmic
  • Logical-mathematical

Further Reading:

Howard Gardner / Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences (1983)

Howard Gardner / Multiple Intelligences: The Theory in Practice (1993)

Howard Gardner / Multiple Intelligences: New Horizons in Theory and Practice (2006)



Erik Erikson’s Eight Stages of Psychosocial Development

February 12, 2019

Erik Erikson developed an eight stage developmental model of the psyche for the full life of the human individual. Each stage has a key conflict (with both positive and negative sides), its resolution into a “virtue,” and the typical age range for that conflict.

  • Trust vs. Mistrust, “Hope”, Infancy (0-1 years)
  • Autonomy vs. Shame, “Will”, Early Childhood (1-3 years)
  • Initiative vs. Guilt, “Purpose”, Play Age (3-5 years)
  • Industry vs. Inferiority, “Competency” (or “Ability” or “Skill”), Schooling (5-12 years)
  • Ego identity vs. Role confusion, “Fidelity”, Adolescence (12-18 years)
  • Intimacy vs. Isolation, “Love”, Young Adult (18-40 years)
  • Generativity vs. Stagnation, “Care”, Adulthood (40-65 years)
  • Ego integrity vs. Despair, “Wisdom”, Old Age (65-? years)

I would think that these ages would depend significantly on cultural norms.

Further Reading:



The Eight Circuit Model of Consciousness

February 7, 2019
Timothy Leary’s dead…
No, no-no, he’s outside, looking in…

— The Moody Blues

Timothy Leary came up with this scheme of eight circuits of consciousness and Robert Anton Wilson expanded and renamed most of them. It’s basically a “great-chain” of evolutionary brain circuitry, leading from lower to higher states of consciousness.

I’ve labeled my diagram with RAW’s names, but below I also list Leary’s names in parentheses.

  • Oral Bio-survival (Vegetative-invertebrate)
  • Anal Territorial (Emotional-locomotion)
  • Semantic Time-binding (Laryngeal-manual Symbolic)
  • Socio-sexual (Socio-sexual Domestication)
  • Neurosomatic (Neurosomatic)
  • Metaprogramming (Neuro-electric)
  • Morphogenetic (Neurogenetic)
  • Non-local Quantum (Neuro-atomic Metaphysiological)

Pretty wild stuff!

Further Reading:



John Beebe’s Eight Function Model

February 5, 2019

After my last post about an ad-hoc eightfold metaphysics, I spent a few minutes trying to create an eightfold psychology. Feeling insufficient to the task, I quickly put this aside and instead wondered if there was any prior work for this, and lo and behold, I found a wealth of such things. Eight seems to be a popular number for the enumeration of the psyche and related subjects.

I’ve already mentioned Robert Plutchik’s Emotions and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow, which are both sort of psychological dissections. If you’re into Jung and related psychologies, Jungian analyst John Beebe developed his eight-function model of personality types that blends Jungian concepts together into an interesting system. The eight types are split into two sets of four: for every type in the first “positive” set (ego-syntonic) there is a corresponding type in a “shadow” set (ego-dystonic). Each set of four has a superior, an auxiliary, a tertiary, and an inferior function.

  • Hero/Heroine (superior function)
  • Father/Mother (auxiliary function) (or good parent)
  • Puer/Puella (tertiary function) (or eternal child)
  • Anima/Animus (inferior function)
  • Opposing persona (shadow of superior) (villain?)
  • Senex/Witch (shadow of auxiliary) (or critical parent)
  • Trickster (shadow of tertiary) (added deceiver for balance)
  • Demon/Daimon (shadow of inferior) (daemon?)

In my diagram, I’ve shown each function paired with its shadow function. And of course being Jungian, the terminology is full of gender distinctions, which could fairly easily be eliminated. There are also lots of arcane associations to MBTI and such, so this will take more than a quick look. Please just wait here, and I’ll be back with an update soon (or not)!

Further Reading:

Also see my posts:

[*11.41, *11.43]


An Eightfold Metaphysics

February 1, 2019

If one juxtaposes the fourfold Space-Time-Matter-Energy with the fourfold Structure-Function-Part-Action, one sees that there are several relations between them. These are simple common-sense relations, not modern-physics types of relations. Below they are listed by Space-type relations and Time-type relations.

Space is required for the extension of Structures.
Matter constitutes Structures.
Parts in an arrangement make up Structures.

Structures extend and are organized in Space.
Matter is located in Space.
Parts occupy Space.

Time allows the expression of Functions.
Energy is required for the operation of Functions.
Actions in a sequence constitute Functions.

Functions have duration and reoccur in Time.
Energy requires and is dependent on Time.
Actions take place within Time.

Several analogies are also evident in this diagram.

  1. Space : Structures :: Time : Functions
  2. Space : Parts :: Time : Actions
  3. Space : Matter :: Time : Energy
  4. Structures : Parts :: Functions : Actions
  5. Structures : Matter :: Functions : Energy
  6. Parts : Matter :: Actions : Energy

Notice that analogies 1.-3. are “contains” relations, and 4.-6. are “part of” relations. One obtains the nesting of entities:

Structures > Parts > Matter
Functions > Actions > Energy

I suppose that any analogy could be shown in a figure like the one on the right (or even written as A / B // C / D) or with the two squares side by side, and that sets of four or six analogies that overlap could be nicely shown as above. If so, I wonder what can be gained by such representations? Probably individually not so much but with overlaps I think it would be interesting.

Further Reading:

The study of parts and wholes relations is called Mereology.

[*10.157, *11.26, *11.34]




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