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Great idea

Sunday, 12 July 2020 at 21:34

Forest of Bowland on Dr John Dunn. It had been my Dad’s idea from the start. I do not no why he introduced me to motorcycling. He had never ridden one. I suspect he thought a motorcycle would give me the freedom and independence I needed to leave my gauche and awkward early teens behind and enter adulthood. He was right; this was the earliest stage in a very slow awakening.

I passed my driving test on Friday and my motorcycling test on the following Monday. It was all uneventful really. Praise from my Dad was always hard to come by. He just seemed to assume that I would always succeed in anything I attempted. I had his confidence in my abilities and I just lived with this. If anything this left me with a trait of quiet diffidence in any personal successes for the rest of my life.

But I lived for motorcycling. When I wasn’t on the bike I was reading The Motorcycle, a weekly tabloid and the Motorcycle Sport and Motorcyclist Illustrated, both monthly magazines.

I progressed to a larger Honda twin, a CB360, and explored the north of England on it, especially the Yorkshire coast, the Dales and across the moors to the Lake District, always alone on these occasions, seeking out towns, villages, roads, lanes and landmarks that I had read about in my growing pile of topographical books. Ever the late starter, the world of books was finally opening up to me.

I did have a couple of motorcycling companions in those early motorcycling years. Speedway was a regular Saturday night ride out in the summer. We would ride to the Shay stadium in Halifax and race back home after watching Eric Boocock and his team of Dukes power-sliding at speed on their single cylinder JAPs and Jawas around the banked gravel track.

I only recall less than a handful of other shared rides in those teen years, to the Yorkshire seaside town of Bridlington, Windermere in the Lake District and the Forest of Bowland (pictured above) on the Yorks-Lancs border. Shared rides were not for me. I needed the geographical objectives that I sought out in books to give shape and purpose to a ride. I did not ride as a means to company and friendship. I was a loner.

© John Dunn.

Violation comes first

Friday, 3 July 2020 at 17:48

Ourobobos on Dr John Dunn. Violation comes first

“In an infinite Cosmos without man, there would be no ‘that is’, there would be no ‘be’ing.” (1=0 See Blog)

“Where there is no being, there is void, no-thing; there is 0. Without man, 1=0.” (1=0 See Blog)

Nietzsche and Heidegger grappled with the issue, but remained necessitarians. They advocated an independent and freely chosen life, an amalgam of the aesthetic, frivolous, improvised and authentic, but failed to recognise that the forest had to be cleared first.

Violation comes first; the wilderness must be beaten back and equilibria overturned. For what is life? It is violation at all levels, from the human individual to thecosmic. Life must be actively chosen over 0.

The wilderness is never conquered. Admittedly Heidegger was wise to this. There is a natural and eternal tendency to return and ouroboros is the symbol. This return is the passive fatalism of a sub-humanity that obeys the tendency in its various iterations: Spinozism, Marxism, Kabbalah, and mind lost in the Heart of Darkness.

There can only be struggle against the wilderness, constant violation, if there is to be life. Struggle is life.

The global pandemic has taught us that nature is the enemy. There is no working with nature, man must work against it. Man must violate nature.

Fire and metaphors hold back entropy; the forest has to be burnt back. This applies hierarchically at a number of levels. First must come the awakening violation of the self through encounter and love.

Man enters the still darkness of the cave to paint on the walls and art is born - metaphor for the violation of the equilibrium of womanhood.

The Earth is violated for the stored fruits that it holds. Beyond Earth there must ultimately be a reaching out into space.

What will be the measure of success?

For the individual it will be by how much he is distinguished from the herd.

For mankind as a whole it will be by how much we are distinguished from nature through art, architecture, feats of engineering and the active control and management of the Earth. The ultimate measure will be the density of the population made possible by man’s marshalling of the Earth’s resources to his own health and benefit.

Beyond that it will be by how far into space the mind of man has penetrated.

What of the Orphic egg metaphor? It has its chicken and egg limitations. Yes Eros broke free; but only after an egg itself was penetrated and fertilised.

A 1=0 equilibrium has to be violated from outside; there has to be an outsider.

In the Creation, the equilibrium of 0 was violated by God.

The equilibrium of the Garden was violated by the Devil.

The equilibrium of Adam was violated by Eve.

The equilibrium of fallen man was violated by the Incarnation.

Man, in the image of the first Violator, is the proof of God.


© John Dunn.

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