Notes on My Continuing Fascination with the Structure and Function of Ideas

I like sending letters, because sometimes it is necessary to share ideas.

I just realized that, in all my madcap letter writing, I have been acting very strategically for quite some time…albeit in a sloppy experimental way, because my life was falling apart and I was in the midst of a shift in consciousness that was less like a shift and more like:

( a shipwreck splintering on the shores of my true nature…which is an island…and it is rough-hewn by storms and it is very green in the sun, warm in some places, damp in others…there are rocks and passageways, underground tunnels and sharp surprises that fall from the trees in the form…of…

There is no need for strategy on the island.

You don’t try to leave, you don’t exactly try to stay…but it just goes on forever and even the ocean and the old boards become a part of it.)

Yet, in spite of all that, here in my walking-talking life, and in my sitting-writing life, and in my *pressing send* life…I have been acting in what could be considered a semi-consciously/consciously strategic manner. Even at the time, I was thinking, and in some cases actually declaring: “If I can lodge an idea in their mind, then the idea might grow.”

So, I wrote the best I could at the time, sometimes hoping for just a moment of befuddlement, a strange message on an otherwise unstrange morning…fumbling wry hooks and innuendo, double entendre for the mind to latch onto…and I tried to say something true (or what felt true to me) – in a way that someone might notice. I only spoke what I figured to be the best and most simple possible truths…framed in comfy postmodern relativism…some broken rants of my efforts to spell out the way that, in spite of how it all sounded, people like me aren’t crazy, that the sky is beautiful, that people need to listen…


“Listen to what?”

…I don’t know, themselves?

BeLoved's Bench

For an upcoming academic paper, I am going to be writing some about social contagion theory, cultural memes and shifts in consciousness (paradigm, value, and meaning, experience)…the way a small idea can affect the ideas around it…and they begin to change, like a callous grows round a splinter, smooths out into skin…the way a single spore can spawn a bloom, or a…”disease” can spread…

I do not like the sickness in the word viral, the word contagion. I prefer to think of such things in terms of verbs rather than nouns. I like to think about their action, how one thing leads to another.

It’s not a new idea. It’s how things work.

…even ideas.

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