Re: CHAT: What statement? abyss staring

From: Amara Graps (
Date: Wed Apr 18 2001 - 13:42:56 MDT

(going back in time.. off the list, presently)

From: Spike Jones (, Sat Apr 07 2001

>Followed to its logical extreme, one concludes if the universe is
>closed, we have been here before, having this exact
>discussion. Furthermore we have been here an *infinite* number of
>times before. Still further, we will be here again, having this exact
>discussion and an unimaginably large number of similar but slightly
>different versions thereof. Thinking about it causes one to zone
>out. Amara has so aptly described the feeling as staring into the
>abyss until it stares back.

I borrowed the expression from Nietzche, although our context was
likely different.

"He who fights monsters should be careful lest he thereby becomes a
monster. And if thou gaze long into the abyss, the abyss will also
gaze into thee" _Beyond Good and Evil_ Nietzsche

I didn't read _Beyond Good and Evil_, but he uses the abyss often in
his writings, and he has a fondness for this particular state of
mind. See _Thus Spake Zarathustra_

Nietzsche was also a little bit insane, but then ...

"I prefer to be only slightly insane. (Don't we all?)"
 --Characters Captain Sheridan and Garabaldi on Babylon 5
(see my special quotes

My context for the abyss is close to the Zen practices and their use
of the deep abyss. The deep abyss is that psychological place where
there's no support, no nothing, a complete free-fall, and you realize
that no one is going to save you but yourself. It can be a terrifying
realization, and it might require sitting there for a while and not
run away from yourself, in other words: 'having a tea with yourself'
(my context of staring into the abyss). However, once one realizes
that they are all they have, then the abyss is a very rich place to
plant seeds of yourself to grow. Then what comes of that abyss is
someone/something genuine and an integrated whole.

Actually everyone has that psychological place of the deep abyss, but
I would guess that many people don't notice because their lives have
many kinds of supports and distractions.



********************************************************************* Amara Graps | Max-Planck-Institut fuer Kernphysik Interplanetary Dust Group | Saupfercheckweg 1 +49-6221-516-543 | 69117 Heidelberg, GERMANY * ********************************************************************* "Never fight an inanimate object." - P. J. O'Rourke

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