Category Archives: blogging

Explorations Change In Emphasis

Alumen Roccae - Stephen Calhoun

Alumen Rocca (2017) Stephen Calhoun

Over the next months, leading into 2018, I am going to shift my blogging emphasis toward using the Explorations Blog to bookmark compelling content across the range of my interests without also including a great deal of personal commentary. This blog will fold in the old music studio blog’s content, nogutsnoglorystudios. This will also afford me the chance to include new music oriented content. Finally, after over a decade of musings about my personal wandering and its shifting contexts, this new direction will dial those kinds of essays back.

These changes are all due to the sudden manifestation in my life’s mission of its missing expressive aspect, my original experiments in creating mirror symmetry-based numinous images. One result of this new chapter is that the blog will softly arc away from its prior principal (and multiple concerns,) and cast a new arc toward the cultural cosmos.

In the background, my interests also have been lightly altered, yet, core concerns remain grounded and just what these have been for decades. As always, juxtaposition will be deployed for the sake of ‘hiding’ my own sense.

“I live in an unethical society, that coarsens the sensibilities and thwarts the capacities for goodness of most people but makes available for minority consumption an astonishing array of intellectual and aesthetic pleasures. Those who don’t enjoy (in both senses) my pleasures have every right, from their side, to regard my consciousness as spoiled, corrupt, decadent.” Susan Sontag

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Spelling Troll? Anyway, Happy Birthday to the Blog


I make it hard to interact with the blog and myself. You have to register to comment, and next your comment will await my moderation. I will allow any comment that is sincere.

Very rarely does someone not comment on the blog, but, instead comments by email. This has happened, perhaps, three times in ten years.

It happened today.


Ouch! …except, despite being weakly educated and of middling intelligence, I’m also the son of a college English professor, so, my personal attempt for something like being literate does cover spelling. Yet, I figured Mr. Stanfield had run across typos that reflect my sometimes rushed proofreading. I also pondered the behavioral economics behind his being so motivated to email me his impressions.

I checked the link he supplied. I checked the thirty-nine pages of text under the ECONOMICS tag. There were no spelling errors except for the pile-up discoverable on the top most, and most recent so-tagged post.


Okay! John Donne was either a very bad speller in 1624, or. . .

This blog turned ten years old on February 5. The first post was: From the Hermetica. I am a dogged blogger, semi-literate, and a fairly competent speller.

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Re: Sam Harris Solves the Problem of Islamic Faith


(My friend L was turned back at the comment guardhouse on October 23. I have entertained her response to the post about religion and Ken Wilber here, and, provided some clarifying comments.

I’m familiar with ken wilbur’s work, and always enjoy his take on matters philosophical and anthropological, psychosocial. at least, i did when i read his books many years back. i am not aware of this ‘integral theory’ as so-named. so in reading the above, this is the possible reason why it is not clear to me why the chagrin is so obvious.
i’ll also admit to not having seen the maher and affleck face-off, although i did of course hear reports.

and, one more thing is that, for me, ‘religion’ is a very broad term  – i see it as mainly institutional, despite the exhortations around the christian teaching i experienced as a youth, to see JC as a ‘personal saviour’. i always found this a bit of a cop-out, although i understood what they were getting at.

i also do not believe in god – or any overseeing entity.

islam i see as a set of prescriptions, christianity also in some ways, and buddhism too. each have their sets of ‘leeways’ for these prescriptions. different people are attracted to different prescriptions as it suits their way of thinking. buddhism makes sense to me as it is logical, and does not depend on a discrete entity outside the self and the general. it does not, at base, believe one can ‘petition the lord with prayer’ (although prayer itself is another thing, and not merely owned by one religious institution).

but beyond religion, there is also personal experience of.. being.

one aspect of religion, linked to their prescriptions, but not at all the same in many instances, are the teachings, the helpful aids in deciphering one’s sense of ‘being’ – the guides from those who have gone before, who reach out and say, you’re not the only one to have experienced this.

this is helpful.

OK, but because of all these drawbacks on my part, i am unable to understand the seeming vehemence of your stance re the ‘integralists’.

i have not read alain de botton’s latest ‘religion for atheists’, but i think i will.
that is all for now.


Vehement was part of the impression I evoked–hmmm.

“Religion” is the term any person might deploy to signify and describe whatever it is he or she is willing to, able to, gonna offer, about being–I like that–and about stuff greater than one’s self, and, about all the other stuff which might inhere to answer to the question, “What to you is religion?”

Religion would be so broad in this meta-sense that it could encompass all answers to the question. This could be a good way to start an inquiry that isn’t anchored in developmental suppositions. The present Integral view is almost entirely developmental, so it misses a great deal of stuff about religion.

Gregory Bateson: In the purely material world there could be no irony, and a monstrous lack of humor of all kinds. But in the world of patterns and ideas, irony is everywhere; and by irony you may (perhaps) reach that small enlightenment which is a moment of seeing the larger gestalt. [from Sacred Unity]

Although I think it unnecessary to qualify this insight in terms of the material world, still the insight seems to me to point in the direction of comprehending what I would term the ‘religious abduction.’ What does a person understand to be the explanatory domain of religion? This move for the sake of clarifying the varieties of explanation about religion should next encompass the believer, the unbeliever, the atheist, and agnostic; and I am certain the patterns would be profuse.

Religion? What has been learned, what could be learned, and what are the messy, dangling ends? What are the boundary conditions?

I am a Humean agnostic, which is to say that the normative religious ideas able to be projected upon me by either the non-ironic believer or atheist, (“as if” my main metaphysical deficit is to not see what is obvious to such a person,) strike me as being nonsensical on their face.

Am I really just a lapsed Catholic living in a Universe entirely created to unfold the glorious scheme for my coming to know as much–that it was created for this purpose? And, atheism?

Religion when taut and not playful and miserably antagonistic toward irony, and, worse, not able to sketch out its scope for learning aims to erase all the answers, or at least subsume responses from the creatura. The Integral nowadays reaches for its own version of a joyless ‘we’ve figured it out so you don’t have to do so.’ Nonsense too, not funny, and only ironic if you are standing out of it far enough way to see the buzzing of its gestalt and contextualized by, among many gestalts, the gestalt given by all the prolix answers to: ‘what to you is religion?’

(Related: what to you is self-development?)

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Under the Self-Development category, author and thought leader Dick Richards gets his link updated because he’s now blogging at his Riding On Dragons. goes away because it seems to be embedding feeds but isn’t showing original content.

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I’ll be rationalizing the sq1:explorations blogroll for a few months, starting with this first installment. This means ejecting the defunct and injecting new blogs from my diigo archive. I also hope to seed some traffic my way since it has dropped 75% in six months. I’ve always aspired to make the blogroll a great one, yet this will be the first time I’ve gone back to each and every outpost.

And, I’ll narrate this process. For example, jeff Larsen’s Dried Sage blog made the roll under sociology, but it turns out Larsen blogged at his Dried Sage for all of 3 months in 2007! Sayonara.

The South African Blog, specializing as it does on Capetown, is active and remains pegged to special places. Table Mountain is the number one mountain I wish to visit.

Grant H. Potts’s Faces in the Moon, Armies in the Clouds:Comments on Religion, Society, and Life has 4 posts in 1 year. Its stays for the time being. Baheyya: Egypt Analysis and Whimsy stays too, although it is similarly low in activity. However, the photography is striking.

Finally, Grant McCracken’s blog, THIS BLOG SITS AT THE Intersection of Anthropology and Economics, has acquired a ton of authority over the years, and I’ll be venturing there to bring back a report soon. ‘TBSA’ also has a fantastic blogroll.

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…added “Vacuum – Edward Vielmetti in Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104” to the blogroll. Evidently Ed is a librarian and so his attention surplus disorder is expressed through his blog’s rich captures of diverse resources. This earns his blog the ‘all over the place category’ here.

The curious thing is that I learned of Vacuum when Ed picked up two posts, one recent and one olden, with quotes from Karl Weick.  This is neat and Ed is obviously a galumpher.

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Walter Logeman and yours truly go back a bit. 12 years. The first person I added to my virtual karass. We initiated some experiments and adventures.

I’ve never met his body. I wish I could go visit him in New Zealand.

His new blog In This Moment. Then there is his Psybernet.

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In refashioning and reviving the explorations blog, I’ve back whacked. Which is to say, inventively, a slew of unpublished posts are being distributed and time stamped as if they had appeared on the actual date each is time stamped with. This method was applied to the blogspot archive carried to here and back whacked.

Unpublished posts I term the back stack. Ha! Deal with it! Spread the whack new memes.

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