Falsehood: An Analysis of Illusion's Singularity HTML version
Chapter 1. Conflicts
Who has not murdered an idea for true love? Our scholarly history is marked by crimes of
passion, but surely you have committed no sin and sit wondering why I hold all of humanity
accused. Innocent people, I presume, choose not to waste energy while waging battles against
concepts. They recognize that the art of academic argument is merely a type of assassination and
have sought more useful employment. Know that we thought-killers practice our art and science
over hours and centuries, awaiting the moment when our loathed ideas are captured and strung
up in preparation for the chopping block. On the block we can find satisfaction, but only the
experienced executioner will strike cleanly through deep meat. Practice is necessary. A sign of
life is failure.
But who truly cares for the thoughts of humanity beyond other humans? This second
question I pose for the sake of balance and to show that no crime has been committed in the
universal court. Our ideas will likely be extinguished along with the molten core of the earth in
a cataclysmic event. If impatient while waiting for nature’s local demise, we may instead
evaporate our physical selves with the aid of nuclear fusion, consume the environment down to
the dirt, or lose the game we play against microbial organisms. The possibility and high
probability of our eventual extinction must be calmly acknowledged before questions of value
can be approached honestly. We will not go forward in time eternally. With this scientific
thought one can begin an investigation.
I do not hope for an end of our line—we are having a magnificent run, one that I wish would
continue for some time. You and I, fellow companion, are the primitive men and women of
yesterday who will be looked upon with the nostalgia of simplicity by future minds. But we are
also the society of tomorrow that breathes today, and although the ancient cultures lacked
technological expertise and technique in art, I can while squinting see the same everyday
struggles in our culture today. I half lie when I tell you my vision for these things is poor. The
conflicts of aboriginal men and women are ostentatiously replicated in the metropolitan empires,
and I assume that we have not inherited these problems from the ancient Greeks, nor from the
first hominids who walked on two legs upon African plains. In fact, no creature at all is to blame
for the current dilemma.
Our struggle, although manifest in the oscillations of history, originates from the fabric of the
present. The present is to blame; like an electric power-plant it provides the voltage differential,
generating the alternating historical current that is viewed as a periodic waveform of past events.
We often fault poor memory for today’s mistakes, but history does not repeat itself because it is
forgotten—how can memories removed from existence or left in the past have influence upon the
present? Admittedly, over finite time periods, recurrence of a forgotten history may randomly
occur with infinitesimal probability, but this repetition would be a statistical fluke and should not
be expected to occur again in a world of infinite possibilities. Rather we conclude that history
repeats with regularity because it is remembered all too well, that those who should have
forgotten the past have not done so, and that those who do remember take action to repeat it.
Thus every repetition of history has its origin in the presence of the present, today, right now.