Sorry about the screwed-up links. The one to Steve Himmer's blog now works, as does the one to Amazon. (I really shouldn't blog after more than two beers.) And I'm serious about getting you a blog of your own.

I wanted to elaborate a bit on the figure of Blake's Urizon: When I said before that I was acquainted with Urizon, I might have meant that I had seen & read Blake's poetry & painting dealing with Urizon as subject. This would have qualified as knowledge in Russell's system of logical atomism; but what I really meant was something quite different: I am familiar with the actual character Urizon that Blake called into existence. From my perspective, it simply does not make sense to draw an artificial distinction between these two ways of understanding Urizon. Urizon himself is of course symbolically apropos to this discussion as well: a very Judeo-Christian Ancient of Days, he looks down from heaven & presumes to measure out reality with his compass. It's not that Blake rejected Reason, but he saw it as a circumference, a boundary against which Imagination must always exert its pressure. (And yet Imagination itself dissolves into a thin gas--the universe expands forever--without the limit of Reason to contain it.)

You write: "What I want to say in coming down in favor of appearances is there is only this world. We cannot step beyond it to find a deeper source of unity and truth that this world of surfaces and change merely partakes in." I'll drink to that; it is exactly the sense in which I have been using / understanding appearance. I am indebted to you for explaining the other sense of appearance, which I hadn't really thought about in regard to this discussion, but it is very useful to bear in mind. We can surely speak meaningfully about the need to cut through the appearances thrown up by ideology & false consciousness. I was implying something of this sort when I mentioned that contemporary science has a tendency to take the intellectual tool of reductionism & transform (reify?) it into a quality of reality.


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