Monday, December 7, 2009

Interpreting Greek spirit/soul distinction

I've just discovered that the daimon I was refer to is actually a guardian spirit and separate from others conceptions. I was wrong, never mind.

So we have the Breath, which is the capacity for life within a body. That is the person. The person exists in the world and can act upon it. Then there are the ghosts. Let us take a story because it is easiest. It is necessary to carry the story within us, so this concept works better in an oral culture, but there are a few stories all of us can tell. I know the story of Cinderalla, for example. I can get all the points down, and some of the magic and beauty. That story exists apart from me but it needs me. It needs my Breath (this is why the word is so suitable) to actualize it. I make it part of myself and as such make it a living thing.

Although fascinating it is also very irratating to muddle through such a mess, and keep in my that this is my interpretation only. Partly I note this because it's true, but also because this concepts are so bloody hard to deal with I am probably making more of a mess.
Firstly, in every language I have explored there is a word for something like spirit and it translates to breath. The Greek definition calls it the propensity for movement and life. Under this definition Aristotle declared that potatoes had souls becuase they have the ability to grow upwards.

Secondly, I must define the spirit. I would prefer to use the word daemon, as in the Aristotilian Eudaemonia or 'happy spirit.' That word, however, has peculiar connotations in our language. To avoid confusion I will use 'ghost'. In this context I will expand the definition of ghost to: that which lingers apart from a body. Ghost could be concept, story, supernatural being, idea or anything else of that sort.. Anything that has potential but needs a living body to actualize it. So there is a ghost of an oak tree in an acorn. It would be better to use 'form' but I don't feel comfortable with Aristotilian terminology.

I take the inner editor as my ghost. As soon as I start to write I will attract one because of my mental state. If I do not I will be taught to through the criticism of others. This means that not everyone will have that voice. In order to acquire it, and allow it to live through you you must be in a certain state of readiness equivalent to Aristotle's Ah-hah! moment.

But what does your inner editor do? Bother you all the time. So you tell it to behave according to it's element. Instead of looking down it acts as a way to draw you up towards the place where other ghosts exist. It does much better bringing in new material and solving the issues in your story then mourning it's mutability and imperfection. So it's a gateway ghost. Having it allows you to access the rest of the a priori. Just watch out for God, I hear it has tentacles.

1 comment:

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