To the scientist the aim of alchemy seems only to be the transmutation of base metals into gold. Though some alchemists were concerned solely with this, many were serious and dedicated thinkers who used alchemical symbols and ideas to probe religious, philosophical and psychological issues.

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Haiku is a form of poetry which is written in seventeen syllables. Each poem contains a word that refers to the season described in the haiku. The following haiku are by the three greatest haiku poets of Japan. (All translations are by R. H. Blyth)

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Some speak in terms of good and evil. Some in terms of justice or the lack thereof. Some prefer the political, while others choose the spiritual route. I, on the other hand, intend to speak here as much as possible, in purely material terms.

Not who transcends but who goes thru. Not who prays to which god but who affects what life forms.

I don’t want to speak here in the traditionally binary mode: beginning-end, reason-madness, father-son. I want to suggest a clever pseudonym to make our conversation more audacious. I’d like to offer as a simple exercise to replace the word integrity for the word Viscosity.

Viscosity should be an important attribute for a man, considering how much Time dilutes it all.

Our dreams need viscosity, otherwise days, sometimes hours later, they dissipate into thin air.

Our beliefs need viscosity, otherwise the system’s friction tends to make them run thin… making them uselessly ‘slippery and stale’.

Our projects need viscosity. This translates into solidity by the way. Which is to say: they aren’t made of evanescent smoke.

It is no longer enough to have ideas… one has to project Ideographies.

Ideographies are dense, they have viscosity -from a purely physical standpoint, they possess mass-. ‘Ideas’ are ghosts of themselves staring at you thru the mirror of language. Ideas depend on your eloquence, ideographies need only time and gravity to ascertain their weight. Ideas inhabit books and lecture halls, Ideographies are residents of the things they’ve become. There is no index in no library for Ideographies: you either bump into the thing or you do not. Everyone can read anyone else’s ideas. Not everyone however, is capable of even recognizing Ideographies standing still, invisible to the naked eye. Ideographies are like the word vehicle: the vehicle isn’t the spark plug, nor is the rear wheel. The vehicle is all of it and none. 

Ideographies then, are abstract maps. Specific instructions on how to unfold ideas into three-dimensional objects. The unfathomable: your neurons actually in synchrony with your heart & hands. And from there, you’d understand that Ideographies are themselves weapons, tools, the very ‘State-of-the-Art’.

Why so much digression about viscosity, about ideographies? Because anything possessing materiality is highly necessary if one is to create an impact, or if one is to create, period…

There is a world still to be made: ours. There is a time still to be defined: the present. There is one final and decisive battle where you and I cannot escape enrollment on either side. And so it’s time to check our individual positions.