Monday, July 10, 2006

Phaedrus Speak : Mirrors

Lila : An Inquiry into Morals:

It's like a hall of mirrors at a carnival where some mirrors distort you one way and some distort you another.

(There could be different mirror reflections at the same time from different people : A moral degenerate, a tedious old nerd, heroic)

Each person you come to is a different mirror. And since you are just another person like them maybe you're just another mirror too, and there's no way of ever knowing whether your own view of yourself is just another distortion. Maybe all you ever see is reflections. Maybe mirrors are all you ever get. First the mirrors of your parents, then friends and teachers, then bosses and officials, priests and ministers and maybe writers and painters too. That's their job too, holding up mirrors.

But what controls all these mirrors is culture: the Giant, the gods; and if you afoul of the culture it will start throwing up reflections that try to destroy you, or it will withdraw the mirrors and try to destroy you that way. Celebrity is like some sort of narcosis of mirrors where you have to more and more supportive reflections just to stay satisfied. The mirrors take control of your life and soon you don't know who you are. The culture controls you and when it takes away your mirrors and the public forgets you the withdrawal symptoms start to appear.

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