An Autonomous Agent

exploring the noosphere

Category: strange loop

Prometheus Rising – Robert Anton Wilson

Prometheus Rising by Robert Anton Wilson describes the human mind with the eight-circuit model of Leary. Wilson explains how tunnel-realities are formed:

“Whatever the Thinker thinks, the Prover proves”

And he makes it clear that his book is itself a tunnel-reality written in English to appeal to the third circuit semantic logic of the reader. It is a book to help the reader escape tunnel-realities which is itself a tunnel-reality. That is meta! Meta-programming the reader’s own mental software to become aware of infinity is the subject of chapter 14. Topics include everything from physics to strange loops to Leary to UFOs to evolution to yoga.

Attempting to elevate the reader’s awareness to a higher state with verbal or written language is like trying to “fit a camel through the eye of a needle.” Hence the studying of Koans by students of Zen, religious fasting to deprive the mind, etc… Read Alan Watt’s The Way of Zen for more on that. This book was written by Wilson, who, in his terminology might be a thinker on a higher circuit, trying to communicate to the vast mass of humanity living on the 1st – 3rd circuits. Once a critical mass of humanity becomes aware, society will under-go a quantum leap in development. With that being said, the book is only an introduction, a starting point for a new perspective to grasp human psychology and human existence as “domesticated primates” on Earth. What is left is for the reader to explore the exercises at the end of each chapter and spread the word.

But some may argue that Wilson is himself subject to the same principals he outlines in his book; yes indeed, perhaps the entire book is the ramblings of a man attempting to brainwash his readers into having thoughts of freedom and liberty…

Jason Silva Videos

Jason Silva creates some incredible philosophical videos. He is noted for reiterating Timothy Leary’s description of the computer and internet as the LSD of the 90’s. And his short clips are intended to be such a psychedelic experience. Really great; as most of them are based on many of the books and ideas posted in this blog. Be sure to watch his videos:

Jason Silva on Vimeo

Jason Silva on YouTube

Here is Jason Silva’s film rendition of the strange loop from Hofstadter’s Godel, Escher, Bach.

The Creation of Stocks

Warren, Ben, David, and Taylor are four friends who meet on weekends to discuss various ideas and have a good time. They are together one night and begin discussing a business venture.

Warren: I know a great idea!

Ben: Sure, tell us another one of your “great” ideas. I hope this one is better than that silly farming device.

David: Alright, let Warren indulge us.

Warren: Ok… so, what if we printed pieces of paper and told people that they were worth the value of a certain company?

Taylor: Is that your idea? Hahahaha, what could that possibly achieve? I am leaving.

Warren: No, wait! Just think about it. If we printed a fixed number of these papers and said that the sum of the them are worth the value of the company, then we could sell them for that value to people.

Ben: Yes, but what fool would fall for such an obvious scam.

Taylor: What value? How can pieces of paper be worth more than paper? How can we claim that they are worth the value of a certain company?

David: You know, I think Warren has a point. All we have to do is sound reputable and create a way for these pieces of paper to be traded.

Warren: See! David is following me!

David: If this were a scam, we would just sell the papers and run off with the money.

Ben: But isn’t that your plan?

Warren: Hmm… True. But in this case, the people are able to trade with each other to get their money back and possibly a profit.

Ben: In fact the potential for a profit would be the only reason for buying these pieces of paper.

Taylor: Hahahah, so this is a giant Ponzi Scheme?

David: Yes, it does seem so, now that you mention it.

Warren: No, there is a difference. We will simply be selling pieces of paper. The “Ponzi Scheme” that Taylor mentioned would be caused by the infinite self-repeating pattern of people buying the paper from each other and then selling it to other people for a return.

David: That is a very strange concept. Kinda like a strange loop.

Ben: Ok, but wouldn’t each person value the pieces of paper differently, based on their opinion on the value of the company?

Taylor: Yes, person Expensive may be willing to pay ten the piece of paper; while person Cheap may only pay ten for the same piece of paper.

David: Then this is idea is doomed. It will never work.

Ben: Too much chaos!

Warren: No! Someone, perhaps seeing an opportunity to profit will establish a definite lower bound to the value of the piece of paper. Let’s say that lower bound is ten; i.e., there is a person who believes that he can buy a piece of paper for ten and, at a later date, sell it to people for more than ten.

David: Ok. I follow.

Warren: Then, someone else, seeing that there is a potential to make money, will offer 12 for the piece of paper.

Ben: AHH! Yes, a price will dynamically form based on the interactions of all these people.

Taylor: And then?!?!

Warren: Well, then we have a way to sell these pieces of paper for more than the value of paper?

Ben: Yes, precisely.

David: So, by simply saying we have pieces of paper which represent the value of a company we have made a handsome profit?

Warren: Exactly!

Ben: And, in the process we have discovered a way to find the value of a company!

Taylor: Wow! I must say Warren, this is a brilliant idea!

David: What will we do will all this money?

Warren: I think I will buy some of these pieces of paper.

Ben: Me too! And make even more money!

Godel, Escher, Bach – Douglas Hofstadter

In early November I ran across a book called Godel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas Hofstadter.  I began reading that book recently. Every page seems to be a remarkable insight into the universe. Highly recommended as one of the best books I have ever opened. Check out the following music by Bach: Musical OfferingNever-ending CanonDie Kunst Der Fuge (The Art of Fugue), and Kleines harmonisches labyrinth (Little Harmonic Labyrinth). To complement the book, I purchased the The Art of Fugue by Bach and Tatiana Nikolayeva. The book explains the concept of Godel’s Incompleteness Theorems and their relationship to cognition. (ISBN-13: 978-0465026562)
Also, check out the work of M.C. Escher: Gallery
My Favorites:

Convex and Concave
The Waterfall
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