Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Are We Ego-, Geo-, or Heliocentric?

HA! Trick question. We are a self-evident sphere of Being Aware of Becoming, whose "center is in each of us but whose circumference is NoWhere." Is that Scottus Eriganus, Professor?

From Scott Horton's blog No Comment

Beneath this there is nothing save the mortal and perishable, except the souls bestowed upon the human race, the gift of the gods. Above the moon all things are eternal. The earth, which is the central and ninth sphere, has no motion, and is the lowest of all, and all heavy bodies gravitate spontaneously toward it.”

When I had recovered from my amazement at these things I asked, “What is this sound so strong and so sweet that fills my ears?” “This,” he replied, “is the melody which, at intervals unequal, yet differing in exact proportions, is made by the impulse and motion of the spheres themselves, which, softening shriller by deeper tones, produce a diversity of regular harmonies. Nor can such vast movements be urged on in silence; and by the order of nature the shriller notes sound from one extreme of the universe, the deeper from the other. Thus there in the supreme celestial sphere with its clustered stars, as it revolves more rapidly, moves with a shrill and quick strain; this lower sphere of the moon sends forth deeper notes; while the earth, the ninth sphere, remaining motionless, always stands fixed in the lowest place, occupying the centre of the universe. But these eight revolutions, of which two, those of Mercury and Venus, are in unison, make seven distinct tones, with measured intervals between, and almost all things are arranged in sevens. Skilled men, copying this harmony with strings and voice, have opened for themselves a way back to this place, as have others who with excelling genius have cultivated divine sciences in human life. But the ears of men are deafened by being filled with this melody; nor is there in you mortals a sense less atuned than that of hearing.”

–Marcus Tullius Cicero, De re publica lib vi (44 CE) in the Loeb edition of the works of Cicero, vol. xvi, pp. 268-73 (S.H. transl. following A.P. Peabody and C.W. Keyes).

I have said elsewhere that ours is an egocentric Ptolemaic cosmos. Above, Prof. Horton, on his No Comment blog, provides a remarkable description of the more familiar geocentric arrangement. Below is our new self-portrait, which image I found on The European Homepage for the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope

This is the largest self-portrait we humans have made (to date). This is all of us. And all of us, all the planets, all the gravel and dust in the Oort Cloud, and all the space in between, we're all moving through the larger universe. So, like a sailboat, we have a center of thrust and a bow shock.

What do we Lunatics and Poets make of this? I don't know, but it sure makes me wonder.


Cosmonaut Tchaikovski lost in open Space,
Rocking in his rocket counting down the days.
Son of Mother Russia, Hero of Ukraine,
Dreaming of his girlfriend, calling out her name.

Masha, Masha you driving me insane,
Masha, Masha I'm calling out your name.

Cosmonaut Tchaikovski lost and never found,
Going kind of crazy, jumping like a clown,
Lunatic and poet, prince of yellow stars,
Making love to Venus, talking shit to Mars.

Masha, Masha you driving me insane,
Masha, Masha I'm calling out your name.

Cosmonaut Tchaikovski, out of his mind,
Circling his orbit twenty million times,
Memories of snowflakes, vodka, borsht and babes,
Balalaika music, eggs by Faberge

Masha, Masha you driving me insane,
Masha, Masha I'm calling out your name.

All songs written by Igor Yuzov
©2004 Shooba-Doobah Music, BMI


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