Bodies Building HouseRealism is a corruption of reality.
Wallace Stevens ‘Those lectures form the foundation for Lecture Six.’ Those five previous lectures themselves are all that we have in order to build our house of Lecture Six. In Max’s terms, for all these lectures contain and all they exclude, lectures One through Five function as the image of Western thought that will be at the disposal of Lecture Six to be put to use as it sees fit; they form the way we can talk about what we are going to talk about, or as Jasper would state it, “No philosophical thought is possible unless lectures One through Five are present.” As we have reasonable (enough) evidence to assume from this background, we are the subjects of Western alphabetic literacy, which is to say that we can only be defined within our own realm of reason. According to Lecture One, however creative we think our thought patterns to be, we are forced to admit that they are simply the culmination of generations of cultural consciousness presented to us in the form of questions, ‘Who are we? Who am I? Where have we been? Where are we going?’ Lecture Two weaves the thought fabric of Lesson One into temporary answers to these questions with definitions, descriptions, and beliefs that are always, already coming to us. In this fashion it is up to each and all of us to reach across history in order to re-assort how we put these notions to modern usage.
This being the case, we delve into history in Lecture Three with the intent of making our existence somehow meaningful. To make sense of our self (and selves) we create symbols to help us come to terms with the fact that we are ‘human storytelling culture-dwellers.’ We make up for what we lack in our biological nature by moving deeper inside our culture of language. Following this thought, Lecture Four confirms that we ‘retain the image of Socrates’ in Jasper’s words in order to remind us of our cultural cosmology and to help us create bounds of context that are based on shared symbols.
In this way we put culturally created symbolism to use through writing and mythmaking in order to translate our unspeakable human expressivity. Lecture Five has us fully equipped with tools in our hands ready to attempt to build Heidegger’s ‘house of language,’ even though we have yet to grasp what to build and how to build it – for every wall that is constructed we become more enclosed and exclusive while at the same time other non-walls are being ignored. ‘What does this all mean?’ is once again and still the question we are faced with trying to answer. Perhaps instead of focusing on the building of walls, we should understand how to build ‘the foundations for Lecture Six.’ Only then can we even imagine the possibility of a Lecture Seven with its ocean view and beautiful children.