You wrote, "In 36, Wittgenstein engages in a meta-reflection on the indeterminacy built into ostensive definition situations that leaves us with a sense of the origin of the concept of mind as a locus of certitude. If the bodily action of pointing results in unpredictability or mistakes, then we want to be able to fall back on some deeper, spiritual activity that will ensure that there is potential for truth, accuracy, perfect understanding, in this context." Interestingly, in current debates about poetics, there has been some attempt to reground certainty in the body, whether through the use of breath as a metaphor (Olson) or the heartbeat as a substrate for regular meters & more recently, the time it takes for neurons to fire & recharge, or some such: "The rod of Moses and the caduceus of Hermes/Mercury combine the staff and the snake in a symbol whose meaning is ambiguous, but which mediates between biological and cultural forms of emergent order. The double-helix geometry of the Greek version of the symbol may be a natural diagram of growth through feedback, so that its resemblance to the shape of the DNA molecule is no coincidence. The mythical exchange of the caduceus for the lyre, symbol of poetry, implies a further meaning for the caduceus: human poetry and art in general." [Frederick Turner] Well, chaos theory, complex systems, etc. as far as I can tell amounts to the New Reductionism, to go along with the New Formalism in poetry. But, really, we're falling through space--all that is solid melts into air.


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