May 1, 2018 (Tallahassee):
I’m thinking of another book title:
Seduction: why going and leading astray can be the right way.
Seduction takes place when something of beauty is found to be desirable, such that the one desiring it leaves their place to pursue it. It is neutral: the beautiful thing so desired may be a ripe berry full of nutrients or the bio-luminescent lure dangling in front of a deep-sea fish’s fangs. In any case, it is a feature of our world and the journey of Life toward its future fulfillment.
The value of seduction on a universal scale is this: for life to evolve, current configurations must eventually change and expand. Forms must transform. For forms to become other forms, their boundaries must be at times crossed and other times dissolved. Such transgression of boundaries is, in seduction, induced by the allure of beauty and desirability. But there is great resistance to this boundary violation. The ‘good’ in conventional morality is about protecting and preserving boundaries. The ‘bad’ is about transgressing them.
Life in the biosphere requires the protection and preservation of the boundaries of bodies and relationships to survive, and death of bodies and relationships requires the transgression and dissolution of boundaries. In the the mind, knowledge is created through the crystallization of concepts, categories, and grammars, while learning requires the breaking of those epistemic crystals to form new, more complex and connected ones. Neurologically, a state of equilibrium is achieved when neuronal networks are stable and habituated. When remote and/or novel connections are made, new networks are formed, leading to greater overall integration….
As a translator, I am a transgressor of the boundaries of languages. I seduce – lead away/astray – the meaning from one linguistic pattern into another. For example, the alluring beauty I see in English words and grammar seduces me toward its charms, and the beauty of Ik pulls me magnetically in its direction. Then, meaning must be seduced – led away – from the English forms and transfigured into the fantasy of Ik forms. A translator is one who literally ‘carries across’ or ‘carries through’ the boundaries of linguistic forms. As such,
A good translator must be seductive and seducible.
To convention and consolidated power, translation is often a threat and a scandal. And rightly so: by it sacred texts are prostituted out to the ‘vulgar’ tongues of the masses. But look at the gains made for human consciousness by the translation of literature and information around the world!
An idea intuited but not yet verbalized, an insight felt but not yet seen, a translation foretasted but not accomplished, a woman desired but not had – all these are fantasies, deceptions, as-yet falsehoods – in a word, seductions. Fantasy – dreaming of what could be, what would bring pleasure if realized and what brings pleasure in the imagining – seems to be an integral component of Life itself. The journey of Life is one long pursuit of a FANTASY, a dream that not only could be realized but will. We feel it in our bones!
The stronger the resistance to transgression, the greater the pleasure in imagining it and the greater the pleasure in the moment when it occurs.
How can someone like me who’s spent the most of his life in the thrill of the chase, settle down and be content once and for all? Indeed, I cannot. For I don’t just want MORE. I want it ALL – all knowledge, all feats, all women, all pleasure, all meaning, all joy, all life, all experience – ALL. My desire is INFINITE. It knows no absolute boundary. Boundaries to it are flat, two-dimensional. They do not rise as a rigid obstacle. They are permeable.
Robert Greene says the consummate seducer must be AMORAL, neither moral nor immoral, but utterly innocent of the judgements of right and wrong. Since intense pleasure arises with boundary-crossing, the one devoted wholeheartedly to pleasure must live in a state of habitual transgression.
I want to become pure SEDUCTION, where my body, mind, soul, and spirit act as a beautiful and irresistible invitation to others to transcend their limitations, surpass the boundaries they need to outgrow, and embody the spirit of unfurling Life. I want to delight with them in the pleasure and hold them through the pain. I want to take them by the hand and lead them to the Bedchamber and brace their arms on the way to the Cross.