Surfing the Eternal Waves of Novelty to the Sands of Time
Wow. Speaking of "infinite plenitude," the internet is an amazing place. In a matter of seconds, I actually tracked down the exact quote I was thinking of: Sinatra "leans into the front end of 'Strangers' and starts singing all the way to 'The End.' And there's no chop-choppy phrasing along the way. No dit-dit-dit. It comes out mmmmmmmmm all the way. If he runs out of gas on a phrase, which is a very rare bird for the man, then he runs out of gas two-and-a-half miles after anybody else would. He sings like he's got an extra tank of Texaco in his tummy."
That's the point I'm driving at: that the object world always appears before us as if it's got "an extra tank of Texaco in its tummy." For example, we know when we look at the world that "the possibilities of life are infinitely more abundant than what is actually on display.... There is an incomprehensible prodigality in the very essence of life." I remember something Whitehead said along similar lines, that out of the infinite pool of possibilities, only a relative few undergo the formality of becoming.
Of course, the higher up the ladder we ascend, the more this becomes apparent. For example, one of our unavoidable existential "owies" is that a single lifetime could never be sufficient to actualize all that is latent within us. This is a very odd situation that should be noticed by more people, but I think the problem is that most people foreclose their infinite potential so early in life, that they don't really feel the sting in the manner I'm talking about here.
Then again, it would be Raccoon error to dwell on this inherent "lack," because life could never appear as rich as it does if it weren't floating atop by this infinite sea of potential. Rather, just consider the alternative. Imagine if existence were as simple as imagined by the metaphysical Darwinist or bonehead atheist, deprived of its intrinsic mystery. What a boring life!
As Swami Kahuna said, we cannot stop the ceaseless waves of novelty, but we can learn to surf them. And I believe this is one of the purposes of a valid spiritual practice -- not to sit safely on the shore like the village atheist, nor to drown in the ocean like the non-dual mystic, but to ride those waves of novelty all the way to the end of the line, which is none other than O-->(n).
As Balthasar expresses it, we cannot look at the reality of undeveloped possibilities as "a realm of limitation and poverty." Rather, "the very purpose of this fullness in the womb of life is to illustrate life's richness and superabundance. It would betoken the poverty of being, and ultimately of the Creator, if everything possible were also actual."
Imagine the horror! Some musician might come along and write the last song! Or a poet might compose the last poem! "That's it. We've run out of songs and poems." But that can never happen. This is obviously a mercy, not a privation. Existence is a gift that keeps giving -- although there are obviously people who specialize in "realizing" this, e.g., true artists and other creative types.
Which I think is why we often inappropriately idealize artists, who seem to live on that shoreline between the the infinite potential and the finite actuality. This is the "dream world," or to be precise, the world where the dreamer transforms O into (n). It is also the world of childhood, of their innocent natural mysticism.
In turn, the purpose of a secular education is to crush this natural mysticism and to replace the infinite world with their cold and godless abstractions. Then, once the soul is sufficiently materialized, it vainly searches for the "missing infinity," i.e., O, in the outer world. Thus is born every spiritual perversion from leftism, to scientism, to liberation theology, to environmental hysteria, to you name it. It is the elevation of Ø to O.
However, it is not exactly correct to say that the infinite cannot be found in the finite, for in truth, that is the only place it can be found, just as it is impossible to locate essence in the absence of form. Rather, form is precisely where you will find essence.
Thus, "the finite appearance as such is the coming to light of a certain infinity." Do you see the point? The realization of finitude is at once the "revelation of its intrinsic infinity. This infinity truly becomes visible in its appearance as the excess that does not become visible." Again, finite reality always croons as if it's got an extra tank of Texaco in its tummy.
As such, any knowledge is surrounded by a penumbra of mystery, which gives it its... tang. Again, imagine how dreadful life would be if there were some one-to-one correspondence between object and subject! Obviously, subject and object are stuck with each other until death do they part, but a statically bi-polar situation would be a marriage made in hell.
And that is no joke, for "Raccoon Hell" is a place where everything just "is what it is." But as Hegel cracked, identity is the identity of identity and non-identity, which ultimately means that you are only you because of who you're not, mainly God. Which in turn is why atheists are so boring.
In psychoanalysis we call this "non-identity" the unconscious. However, as I have mentioned before, it is incorrect to visualize it as a conscious ego floating over a a kind of unconscious ocean. Rather, it must be looked at dialectically, in that there can be no ego without an unconscious, and vice versa. They co-arise, in the way that shining a light in the dark illuminates a spot, but also "unShows" you all the darkness surrounding it. Therefore, knowledge of any kind is always surrounded on all sides by the great unKnown.
And I emphasize un-Known, because this dimension is surely "known," just not in a wideawake and cutandry way. It is this unKnowledge that allows us to tend toward a true self which isn't yet known to us. This is also the higher unKnowledge of faith, the "luminous darkness" that allows us to approach the unKnown God who will increasingly become known to us through that very link of faith-infused unKnowledge.
Well, I guess that's enough for today. I could keep writing forever and never get to the bottom or top of this Subject or object. All quoted material from Theo-Logic: The Truth of the World.