Marginalia are successful when you no longer notice them. They happily evolve from guides in a wilderness to trail markings one no longer needs but may be useful to others exploring the same text.

We are ever, only, selectively paying attention, from the most intelligent to the least. There is no difference between genius and fool. Each of us is the least significant part of the universe while simultaneously the whole.

Fu / Return

>The idea of a turning point arises from the fact that after the dark lines have pushed all of the light lines upward and out of the hexagram, another light line enters the hexagram from below. The time of darkness is past. The winter solstice brings the victory of light.

I Ching ยง 24, Princeton University Press, 1971

If you asked me to choose between Russell and Laozi I would not hesitate. I will always choose both/and over either/or.

>Once all under Heaven knew beauty as “beauty”; at that moment “ugliness” was already there. Once all knew goodness as “goodness”; at that moment “not good” was already there. Thus it is that presence and absence generate each other; difficulty and ease determine the sense of the other; long and short give proportion to the other; highs and lows are a matter of relative inclination; instrumental sounds and voice tones depend on one another for harmony; and before and after result from their respective places in a sequence.

Laozi, 2

Emily > AI

Computers have been able to calculate faster than any human could from their inception. The transition from that to artificial intelligence is trivial. Calculation is itself a kind of intelligence. Our only advantage as a species is not technology per se, but philosophy. Or perhaps better, poetry.

Desire can prevent us from seeing _dao_. This strikes me as correct, yet there is a fine line between this and Buddhism.

>He who by reanimating the old can gain knowledge of the new is fit to be a teacher.

Confucius (Giles, 8)

Reading Russell reminds me of why I love Peirce. The height of mathematical philosophy is as close as I can come to math, in the same way that assembly language is as close as I care to come to electrical engineering. I love the beauty of the underlying structures.

I’m reading [The Way of Awareness in Daoist Philosophy](https://threepinespress.com/) by James Giles. His writing is clear and the timing could not be better. I studied under one of the professors who wrote a review on the back jacket. At the time I thought Daoism was interesting at best, but ultimately wrong. How foolish I was.

At the same time, I am disheartened by the fact his publisher needs to print a bio and headshot. Who cares where an author studied and taught, or what he looks like? Especially a Daoist! That someone else approves of a writer has nothing to do with whether or not he’s worth reading.

Yet truth requires just that: consensus. Not in essence, but recognition.