I have some clarifications below in response to your comments. It
would appear that I am not explaining "the inside looking out" well,
so I have added some more verbiage. I tried to delete some previous
text, but did not get very far since it all seemed appropriate for
>> As I see it, definitions are terms of agreement. We can present an
>> experience in vague terminology as part of a discussion, but I agree
>> with you that to discuss DQ does indeed relegate it to perhaps
>> inappropriate definitions; but what can we do? I do not believe that
>> providing terms for DQ is necessarily destructive so long as they are
>> seen as a mode for discussion. I do not have a problem with the
>> "undefined" nature of DQ, so long as we do not let that detract from
>> our discussing it. As I have presented in other posts, any definition
>> of anthing is an approximation. It's use depends on the strength of
>> the agreement. It would seem that we could agree on DQ in order to
>> progress MoQ, without signifying that such agreement IS DQ. I am
>> against dogma or scripture as truth, for that destroys one's personal
>> relationship with the cosmos. More below.
> I'm not sure what you mean by 'depending on the strength of the agreement'.
> Apart from that I agree with all of this.
All I meant was that if a word is used, we must agree with what that
word means. Often the case in this forum seems to be that we cannot
agree on simple terminology. In such cases, the strength of agreement
on such words is weak. There are many examples of this which I am
sure you are aware of. What happens in such cases is that the
discussion deteriorates into semantic obfuscation.
>> Yes, "the inside looking out". It seems to me that you provide some
>> perspective on this in your answer to Marsha concerning the "lack of
>> need" (my quotes) for relatively comparing patterns. I will present
>> (as best I can) what I mean.
>> It would seem that for a static pattern to present itself, it must be
>> something that is encapsulated as distinct from other. We can say
>> that such pattern recognition (or creation) is distinct from the
>> absense of pattern, much in the same way that words on a page are
>> distinct from the page background. Metaphysically we must invoke the
>> concept of "no pattern" which is similar to creating the concept of
>> zero. Zero is an abstract value which allows the presentation of
>> something. So, we have static patterns formed as opposed to there
>> being none.
> I think the confusion here is that of perspective. From a static quality,
> logical, intellectual perspective, DQ both is and is not defined. In other
> words, from a static quality perspective the distinction between DQ and
> static quality must be made in order for the undefined Dynamic Quality to
> exist. But from a Dynamic Quality perspective however, this logical
> contradiction disappears as Dynamic Quality precedes logic.
Yes, perhaps that is the confusion. Where I am coming from is the
presentation of MoQ as a metaphysics. For purposes of helping us to
understand what Quality is, Pirsig has devided Quality into DQ and sq.
These do not necessarily have to exist to understand Quality, but,
since this is metaphysics this division is useful for understanding.
Once we understand what Quality is, the distinction between DQ and sq
is no longer necessary since then we see reality as Quality. MoQ is
like a book about Argentina. Once we live in Argentina we do not need
the book anymore.
> Therefore, it is logically true that for DQ and sq to exist - they must be
> distinguished, but that is only true on static quality logical reflection.
> It does not determine whether that static quality exists to begin with.
> According to the MOQ what's fundamental is DQ. The static quality comes
> later. This is why I say that such a relative comparison is not necessary
> for static quality to exist. All we can say is that these patterns exist and
> if we want to we can also say - that's better than nothing. :-)
Yes, they must be distinguished since that is how the metaphysics is
set up. If the distinction between DQ and sq was not established MoQ
would not be MoQ. We establish that DQ and sq exists for us to
continue with the set-up.
I do have a disagreement with you on the order of appearance. As I
see it, DQ and sq must arrise together. An analogy would be a window
in a house. Both the frame and the opening are linked so they cannot
come about in sequence. At the expense of seeming religious (which I
am not in the dogmatic sense), the same is true for the Metaphysical
split between the body and spirit (note that I said metaphysical since
this split is artificially created to explain a perpective). That is,
the spirit (as conceived in the particular metaphysics) and the body
cannot exist separately but must co-arrise. There is no human body
without spirit and no spirit without human body (although I can think
of a number of historical characters that seem to be without human
The conceptualizing of DQ and sq is not relative for this does not
make sense. For, is the wind relative to the air? In my
understanding, relative connotes that a comparison is made, or, that
something is seen within a certain context. Examples of these would
be "I am here relative to there", and, "DQ and sq exist relative to
MoQ". DQ cannot be relative to sq, IMO. It seems that the term
relative is used for something that it should not. But I am happy to
be corrected here.
>> In order to conceptualize the presense of static patterns we must
>> contextualize them relationally.
> I disagree. I think that we can experience static quality without having to
> contextualise it. We certainly can and do contextualise, but this is not
> necessary for static quality to exist.
What I am suggesting is that "conceptualization" requires
contextualization. Things become static through distinction. If
there is no conceptual distinction, we cannot discuss a static
I can see what you are presenting, however. When we drive into a tree
(heaven forbid), we experience some very static quality. However the
static notion comes after the experience when we say "officer, that
tree attacked me!" I would say that the feeling of going 90 miles per
hour is a dynamic feeling that we are not constantly referring to as
"gee, I am going 90 miles an hour" as it is happening (until it's too
late). In my current opinion, static quality requires some sort of
reflection. But I'm easy and I can go either way on this. Perhaps
the question is: When is something static quality, and when is it
dynamic quality (experience). Or maybe that is the wrong question for
we do not want to pigeon-hole DQ.
>> They then form structures with
>> relationships with other such structures and with relation to no
>> structure. (I am not invoking relativism since this is a direct form
>> of measurement. While we can say that the sea shore is relative to
>> the land and the ocean, but I believe this is misleading. We can say
>> that the seashore arrises from the interface of the land and the
>> ocean, and is therefore a relational arrising.)
> I disagree that these patterns need to create relationships with other such
> structures and no structure in order to exist. We can certainly do this but
> it is not necessary. As I've said to Marsha. Think of a first pattern. Now
> think of a second pattern. How did the first one exist if the second one
> wasn't there to compare it to begin with?
We can disagree on this, like I said, I'm easy and continually
improving. Maybe between patterns is not necessary, but we must pull
a pattern from somewhere, IMO. It must stand out. A mountain only
exists because there is a plain.
> On an unrelated note, why is it misleading to say that the sea shore is
> relative to the land and ocean?
This is probably due to the way I understand the word relative. But I
suppose we can say that the seashore is relative to the land/ocean
context. I am trying to avoid falling into a relativism trap, so
maybe I am just paranoid :-)
>> The contextualizing
>> of static patterns requires an "outside looking in" approach. That
>> is, an outside view of our place juxtaposed with such patterns is
>> created as is necessary. This then displays the numerous dichotomies
>> (or plurachotomies -my word :-) ), as "seen from above". Thus
>> differentiation marches on.
> I don't argue that differentiation is not possible. Of course it is. But it
> is not necessary to experience static patterns.
>> When I speak of the "inside looking out", I am referring to a view
>> which does not contain this form of differentiation. In MoQ, the
>> concept of "pre-static patterns" (my terms) is invoked. This would be
>> the "pre-intellect" or "direct sensing" idea that Pirsig and James
>> relate to. Through the course of a day, most of our experience
>> resides in the "direct" area, which could vaguely be termed the
>> subconscious (although this label is fraught with problems due to
>> modern psychology, although I mean anything we assimilate that is not
>> in our active consciousness).
> Yes, DQ is not the subconscious. Unfortunately, I'm not very fond of your
> "inside looking out" analogy though. It seems to bring to my mind a fixed
> 'inside' and a fixed 'outside'. Two very static things.
Yes, the is the problem with subject-objectification. It is the view
that I am referring to, not where they are coming from. The concept
of the inside or outside "looking" is what I am trying to explain.
Perhaps I will try a different metaphor, at the expense of confusing
the issue. The "outside looking in" could be analogous to "a pointing
finger", whereas the inside looking out would be "a finger pointing".
The first is an object, while the second is an event. The outside
looking in creates objects, while the inside looking out is experience
without "objects". Both are necessary, like peanut butter and jelly
for the PBJ sandwich, they both contribute to the Yummy. Such
"experience" is a human form of DQ. OK, there, I have added another
topic for confusion :-)