Ship of the World

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Lomelindo
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Ship of the World

Post by Lomelindo »

Since this forum is predominately inspired by nautical terms, I will post a map from the Lost Tales where the world is fashioned like a ship.
Ship of the world.PNG
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” - Haldir

“We’re not in decent places.” Gollum
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lúthien »

That’s a fascinating concept, all the more because it makes me wonder what that ship is supposedly sailing through - or towards?

It is not unlike Terry Pratchett’s Discworld which rests on the back of four giant elephants who stand on a even more giant turtle (named A’Tuin); and some philosophers on Discworld busy themselves with the question where (or what) A’Tuin is headed towards.
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by stevelewis1825 »

He/she is heading for the mating ground. I think I read that somewhere in the books.
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

@Luthien: I go into a bit of attempted elucidation on this in my first T-e Ainulindalë lesson {attached}, endnote 10.
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lomelindo »

stevelewis1825 wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 1:42 am He/she is heading for the mating ground. I think I read that somewhere in the books.

Mating ground?  Where did you read that?  
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” - Haldir

“We’re not in decent places.” Gollum
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lomelindo »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 6:23 am @Luthien: I go into a bit of attempted elucidation on this in my first T-e Ainulindalë lesson {attached}, endnote 10.

I love that article you posted as a link in footnote 10, what is outside the observable universe.  I often wonder what it would be like if anything.  Like if you teleported there, would you lose your mind from the sheer nothingness? Like staring into the Void and the Void stares back.
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” - Haldir

“We’re not in decent places.” Gollum
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by stevelewis1825 »

@Lomalindo - I can't remember. I'll have to dig around. I've read all but the last two books, so it may take awhile. Or I could have dreamed it. :)8 I love discworld! It's like middle-earth with a sense of humor.
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lúthien »

stevelewis1825 wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 1:42 am He/she is heading for the mating ground. I think I read that somewhere in the books.
Ah yes! Of course!
That’s one of the plot elements of “The Light Fantastic” 😁

stevelewis1825 wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 5:26 pm I love discworld! It's like middle-earth with a sense of humor.
I’ve often thought about how the the work of different authors, for instance like Tolkien’s and Pratchett’s, compares in that respect.

My first thought is that Tolkien is probably much deeper, and he pursued describing it purely for its own sake, and it acquired a transcendent function along the way; while for Pratchett, the narrative function of Discworld in any case started mostly as a kind of satirical mirror to Roundworld (our Earth).

One of my colleagues in my first real job in IT, back in 1999, introduced me to Terry Pratchett exactly as you describe it: “it’s like Tolkien with nitrous oxide added”.

Of course it is also a significant factor that Pratchett was not a religious person, though I remember reading that he was having some second thoughts at some point.

But still, Pratchett does touch very profound spiritual / Gnostic issues, but I don’t know whether he was doing so consciously or not. There is for instance Death’s speech about the purpose of fantasy, imagination and belief in Hogfather, when he defends it towards his granddaughter Susan:



Pratchett’s personification of Death is beyond brilliant 🥰 ... when he passed away some time ago, someone wrote this one-line tribute:

“AT LAST, SIR TERRY, WE MUST WALK TOGETHER.”

That was one of the most touching tributes I ever read.
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lomelindo »

Lúthien wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 11:51 pm
stevelewis1825 wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 1:42 am He/she is heading for the mating ground. I think I read that somewhere in the books.
Ah yes! Of course!
That’s one of the plot elements of “The Light Fantastic” 😁

Oh, I thought Steve was referring to something Tolkien wrote.  I am not really a fan of Pratchett. When it comes to other "fantasy" authors I like The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan, A Song of Ice and Fire (though the show is crap) by GRR Martin, Dragonlance, and Robert Holdstock.
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” - Haldir

“We’re not in decent places.” Gollum
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lúthien »

Meneldur Olvarion wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 6:23 am @Luthien: I go into a bit of attempted elucidation on this in my first T-e Ainulindalë lesson {attached}, endnote 10.

Hey thanks! That is a great overview, I like the diagram.
 
4 Music as an element of creation is rare in mythologies. See “Physics and "The Ainulindalë": The Greatest Creation Story Ever Told” [link] {PDF}

Now that is interesting! One of them synchronicities again 😁: jut his afternoon I was watching a video of that famous “The Unanswered Question” Harvard lecture of Leonard Bernstein and he exactly goes into that: that it would have made more sense to sing “let there be liiiiight!” than to say it (as if ordering lunch 😉)

(Video should start at 25:50, if not forward to there, it’s over an hour long)

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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lúthien »

Lomelindo wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 1:38 pm I love that article you posted as a link in footnote 10, what is outside the observable universe. 

You mean this article?
Lomelindo wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 1:38 pm I often wonder what it would be like if anything. 

That emptiness is an interesting concept, but as far as I could read that article (it seems to cut off in mid-sentence) it describes the current understanding how the part of the universe that we can see is only a (small) part of the actual whole universe. Not because there is nothing outside of that “observable universe” but because the light from it can never reach us as that area of space moves away from us faster than the speed of light (which is not a violation of Einstein, btw).
In that sense you can never know what’s out there unless you find a way of going faster than light. But still, there is no reason to assume it would be fundamentally different than the part we can observe.

The notion of a void or emptiness, as “that what the universe is expanding into” is a different one. The idea makes some sense, if you think of the universe inflating as something like a balloon that’s growing in size. But that analogy is off because it considers a regular 3D shape expanding in a regular 3D space. As far as I’ve understood it, it is not that the universe is expanding into something, but it’s space (and time) itself coming into being and becoming ever larger. In that sense there also isn’t “a time before the Big Bang” because time itself - being intrinsically linked with space - started only with the Big Bang.

Still there could be higher dimensions that sort of contain our universe / space, and that you could say antedate the Big Bang - but that’s a different time-line altogether, as it were. There’s a branch of string theory called M-theory that studies those concepts, and which allows for multiple universes like our own existing in parallel, each on its own “membrane” of the higher-dimensional space.
Lomelindo wrote: Wed Dec 23, 2020 1:38 pm Like if you teleported there, would you lose your mind about from the sheer nothingness? Like staring into the Void and the Void stares back.

For that you’d have to teleport to higher dimension, though I wouldn’t know if that would be like nothingness, or why it would stare back?

I would think “nothingness” would simply amount to the same thing as being in a darkened room: nothing to see. Of course that would eventually become quite uncomfortable, but I’d think it would be mostly boring.

I have no idea why, but many authors have described the effects of hyperspace on people as detrimental, varying from merely “unsettling” (as Larry Niven does) to something over-the top as that you’d blow up the whole universe of you tried travelling through it. 
Even Stephen King wrote a typical creepy story about it called “The long jaunt”.

I find Larry Niven’s description a lot more interesting (though not very convincing either): in his stories, human cannot process the supposed “nothingness” that looking out of a window of a ship that uses its hyperdrive comes down to, and therefore people experience it as a kind of blind spot, with the brain filling in the gap.

in one particular story (from Niven’s short story collection “Neutron Star”) the protagonist and a friend travel in a ship of which the whole hull is destroyed at one point: it still functions and they have a kind of inflatable bubble to live in, but piloting the shop through a hyperspace jump requires them to be outside that bubble in a space suit, at the controls. So when they switch the drive on, everything around them, apart from the instrument board, becomes a huge Blind Spot that wraps itself around them. They make it home safely, but it’s a rather nerve-wrecking trip. It’s a great story, very well told - I like Niven a lot. 

I wrote about it on the forum years ago, in a topic called “Manichean Opposites”, it’s here

And here is an article on TV tropes that describes a huge number of ways in which hyperspace could be bad for your mental or physical health.

However, the real interesting question is (at least I think so) why people invest so much effort to come up with so many variations of the message “Unknown = Bad”
I would think that giving the unknown the benefit of doubt makes more sense, but maybe that doesn’t sell so well 🙄



 
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Meneldur Olvarion »

Lúthien wrote: Sun Dec 27, 2020 9:10 pm [...] The notion of a void or emptiness, as “that what the universe is expanding into” is a different one. The idea makes some sense, if you think of the universe inflating as something like a balloon that’s growing in size. But that analogy is off because it considers a regular 3D shape expanding in a regular 3D space. As far as I’ve understood it, it is not that the universe is expanding into something, but it’s space (and time) itself coming into being and becoming ever larger. In that sense there also isn’t “a time before the Big Bang” because time itself - being intrinsically linked with space - started only with the Big Bang.

Still there could be higher dimensions that sort of contain our universe / space, and that you could say antedate the Big Bang - but that’s a different time-line altogether, as it were. There’s a branch of string theory called M-theory that studies those concepts, and which allows for multiple universes like our own existing in parallel, each on its own “membrane” of the higher-dimensional space.

The second is the effect I was going for as it matches my perceptions in Salvia-space, but I was a bit pressed for time in finding links for that commentary. The best situation for a commonality of comprehension would have been if everyone reading it had experience with Salvia, or failing that entheogens generally, but that wasn't going to happen (and likely will not).
[...] or why it would stare back?

I think that's a reference to the Nietzsche quote:
Nietzsche (Beyond Good and Evil: Prelude to a Philosophy of the Future) wrote: [...] if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.
[link]
 
I would think “nothingness” would simply amount to the same thing as being in a darkened room: nothing to see. Of course that would eventually become quite uncomfortable, but I’d think it would be mostly boring.

I just get "neurological static", if, for example, I'm trying to get information on a shamanic target and there either isn't any or the Salvia-people choose not to reveal anything, although this isn't exactly the same situation.

Added: Since I'm visually oriented, these are phosphenes [link].
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Re: Ship of the World

Post by Lomelindo »

Yes, I did work in some Nietzsche in there, plus a nod to Lovecraft whose writing makes ample use of the fear of the unknown and the possibility that there are aliens beings out there who may be hostile to humans and that the human mind would not be able to process, thus the idea of going insane. In the RPG game Call of Cthulhu, sanity is an attribute possessed by the player.
The sheer size of things in space are so mindbogglingly large or crazy small (Planck length). I'm exploring panpsychism which would suggest that there is a fundamental Mind behind all things.

And yes this stuff can be hard to visualize which is why I like metaphors to be able to expand our understanding of things from a bird's eye perspective. Like the ravens of Odin, Thought and Memory, who brought to Odin news of Midgard, flew from a great height.
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.” - Haldir

“We’re not in decent places.” Gollum
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Re: Ship of the World

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I love this drawing in the Lost Tales Lomelindo!  Thank you for sharing this here! <3
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