Brancusi did his best…

Bird in Space (L’Oiseau dans l’espace), 1932-1940, polished brass

…Nature didn’t even have to try.

NGC 4676: When Mice Collide

‘Let art be content with its lofty, splendid mission of being a substitute for reality in case of its absence, and of being a textbook of life for man. Reality stands higher than dreams, and essential purpose stands higher than fantastic claims.’

N.G. Chernyshevsky, ‘The Aesthetic Relation of Art to Reality’, MA thesis, 1855, in Selected Philosophical Essays, Foreign Languages Publishing House, Moscow, 1953, 379

Images: top/bottom

Reply to all those who put the determinations of consciousness before those of objective reality and fail to understand the relationship between the two

Biden, Johnson and what’s ‘is name from down under

I listened to the 1st 1/2 hr of the video and pulled the plug – the level of ‘ideas’ was so unrelentingly stupid. Not once in that 1/2 hr did either White (for whom I used to have some respect) or the thug and standover merchant Mearsheimer use the words ‘capitalism’ and ‘socialism’ – they spoke of everything but. Another word they didn’t use is ‘necessity’ – the engine of the world. It was necessary that capitalism emerge from feudalism – nothing could stop it. And it is necessary that forms of socialism will replace capitalism. Again, nothing can stop it. Engels wrote to a friend in the US (I have posted on it) that the US would have to become socialist in order to compete with China. Similarly, Europe will become socialist as will that fearful, utterly servile nation Australia. These things will happen not because I like socialism or hate capitalism but because I recognise what necessity is and how it functions. You were born, will age and die. So was and will I. And the working of necessity goes on…

If you want a good understanding of the Jewish/Palestinian conflict, watch this

Do to others as you would have done to yourself.

From a grain of sand…

Pearl in an oyster
NGC 602 and beyond

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This is not a pipe…

René Magritte, ‘La Trahison des images‘, oil on canvas, 1929

…and this is neither an aurora nor an image of one.

STEVE over Copper Harbour

Images: top/bottom

All things come to pass through conflict

UGC 1810: Wildly Interacting Galaxy from Hubble

‘The counter-thrust brings together, and from tones at variance comes perfect attunement, and all things come to pass through conflict.’

Heraclitus, The Art and Thought of Heraclitus, LXXV

What is truth?


NGC 2442: Galaxy in Volans

‘Appearance…constitutes the actuality and the movement of the life of truth. The True is thus the Bacchanalian revel in which no member is not drunk; yet because each member collapses as soon as he drops out, the revel is just as much transparent and simple repose. Judged in the court of this movement, the single shapes of Spirit do not persist any more than determinate thoughts do, but they are as much positive and necessary moments, as they are negative and evanescent.’

G.W.F.Hegel, Phenomenology of Spirit, Trans., A.V.Miller, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 1977, 27-28 (Preface, 47)



There is nothing in the world but matter in motion




Lenin: the theory of knowledge of dialectical materialism – part three

Immanuel Kant by Karl Friedrich Hagemann, 1801, marble, Kunsthalle, Hamburg

The ‘Thing-in-Itself’ (continued)

The question at issue is Marx’s second Thesis on Feuerbach and Plekhanov’s translation of the word Diesseitigkeit.

Here is the second Thesis:

“The question whether objective truth can be attributed to human thinking is not a question of theory, but is a practical question. In practice man must prove the truth, i.e., the reality and power, the ‘this-sidedness’ of his thinking. The dispute over the reality or non-reality of thinking which is isolated from practice is a purely scholastic question.”

Instead of “prove the this-sidedness of thinking” (a literal translation), Plekhanov has: prove that thinking “does not stop at this side of phenomena”. And Mr. V. Chernov cries: “The contradiction between Marx and Engels has been eliminated very simply…It appears as though Marx, like Engels, asserted the knowability of things-in-themselves and the ‘other-sidedness’ of thinking” (loc. cit., p. 34, note).

What can be done with a Voroshilov whose every phrase makes confusion worse confounded! It is sheer ignorance, Mr. Victor Chernov, not to know that all materialists assert the knowability of things-in-themselves. It is ignorance, Mr. Victor Chernov, or infinite slovenliness, to skip the very first phrase of the thesis and not to realise that the “objective truth” (gegenständliche Wahrheit) of thinking means nothing else than the existence of objects (“things-in-themselves”) truly reflected by thinking. It is sheer illiteracy, Mr. Victor Chernov, to assert that from Plekhanov’s paraphrase (Plekhanov gave a paraphrase and not a translation) “it appears as though” Marx defended the other-sidedness of thought. Because only the Humeans and the Kantians confine thought to “this side of phenomena”. But for all materialists, including those of the seventeenth century whom Bishop Berkeley demolished (see Introduction), “phenomena” are “things-for-us” or copies of the “objects in themselves”. Of course, Plekhanov’s free paraphrase is not obligatory for those who desire to know Marx himself, but it is obligatory to try to understand what Marx meant and not to prance about like a Voroshilov.

V.I.Lenin, Materialism and Empirio-criticism: Critical Comments on a Reactionary Philosophy, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1975, 89


Part three/to be continued…

Marx’s Theses on Feuerbach

Lenin: the theory of knowledge of dialectical materialism – part two

Immanuel Kant by Karl Friedrich Hagemann, 1801, marble, Kunsthalle, Hamburg

The ‘thing-in-Itself’

In the theory of knowledge, as in every other sphere of science, we must think dialectically, that is, we must not regard our knowledge as ready-made and unalterable, but must determine how knowledge emerges from ignorance, how incomplete, inexact knowledge becomes more complete and more exact.

Once we achieve the point of view that human knowledge develops from ignorance, we shall find millions of examples of it just as simple as the discovery of alizarin in coal tar, millions of observations not only in the history of science and technology but in the everyday life of each and every one of us that illustrate the transformation of “things-in-themselves” into “things-for-us”, the appearance of “phenomena” when our sense-organs experience an impact from external objects, the disappearance of “phenomena” when some obstacle prevents the action upon our sense-organs of an object which we know to exist. The sole and unavoidable deduction to be made from this – a deduction which all of us make in everyday practice and which materialism deliberately places at the foundation of its epistemology – is that outside us, and independently of us, there exist objects, things, bodies and that our perceptions are images of the external world.

V.I.Lenin, Materialism and Empirio-criticism: Critical Comments on a Reactionary Philosophy, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1975, 88


Part two/to be continued…