Cosmos Café [12/11] - Holiday Edition

You forget, this whole forum was inspired by Infinite Jest. Also: Borges. If you can find the center, you are probably beyond any circumference.


I felt the Center to be in my Navel,then I read Alan Watts & the Center was Every-Where & Now-Here,I Feel Right at Home In-At Cosmos Cafe’


I have no idea what that/you means, other than the inspiration of IJ was real, but only a part of you. Can’t we just sing some songs on line? Get stupid for a @ccafe session? Love those close to us and so on and so forth? Am I invited for Christmas dinner? Just kidding … … I’d bring a bottle(s) of wine, or weed. Just fucking with you. I’m fine. “ehhh” you know?
Cheers & Happy holidays,
love to you and yours, @madrush


I’m feeling up for anything for this upcoming café. Hope to see a few of you… :christmas_tree:


I think we should talk about the Crisis of the Frame, which seems to be what is happening. It used to be called ‘post modern drift.’ I think the Cafe has a bad case of it and the symptoms are getting worse. I am not interested in rescuing the Cafe as I feel a strong tendency to do that. I have a hundred things to pay attention to and I am willing to let go of all of that and direct my attention where? To what? Someone please direct my attention. Point to something. Show me something. Has anyone learned anything about anything? If the Cafe is running out of gas and no one has a direction, perhaps we should just accept that as a fact, and move on. I have library books to turn in or I will get a fine. So that motivates me to go in a certain direction. To the library. If there was a compelling reason to hang out here I would. I like everyone a lot and appreciate how smart we are but I don’t get a lot of enthusiasm for anything in the Open Frames. Good improvs can happen but I find they tend to need to be prepared for. I expect that we will be more focused in the next year. I will gladly watch the video when it comes out and share some views. Surprise me!

I have learned a lot this week and would love to share but I have other obligations and so must watch out for the signs of burn out. And
I wish everyone great seasons of jolly whatever. Ho! Ho! Ho!


I would like to think that we have different vehicles. We mentioned our bus in the past ran out of gas, no transportation alas…yet _we remained fueled all the same _. I would like to think that we have a great opportunity here to introduce something. I see the Cafe (or perhaps this particular Cafe as good place for the barcamp method, a didactical foundation @MarcoMasi mentions in his synopsis of his book Free Progress Education for our “education” here.

Marco's Barcamp description

The ‘barcamp’ or ‘un-conference’ modality might play a role in a future higher education environment also. A barcamp might be defined as an alternative way with which people could communicate their ideas, projects, studies, and even dreams. It works as follows. In the beginning, all the people convene in a hall, and everyone is allowed to present in a minute or two his or her session. And ‘everyone’ means just that: everyone. There is no hierarchy of sages, teachers, or professors. Also a perfectly unknown person could rush in and present a speech. ‘Mister nobody’ can propose for instance to discuss with those who like to attend ‘The future of humanity on Mars’, or instead of presenting his own project he/she might ask for solutions to questions such as how to find funds to publish a book on hand surgery, or discuss how far didactical and pedagogical optimism is justified, and so on. Once the session has been briefly presented, and if among those present some raise their hands to show interest, a room and a time segment for a discussion are assigned. The same procedure repeats itself for all the others who present a topic. In this fashion, several sessions will have been programmed, without any previous intervention or approval by a commission. On a board, in less than a half an hour, a huge programme of sessions is set. Then everyone attends those which are considered the most interesting. What follows is not a talk by the proponent of the session, but only a brief introduction, after which an informal discussion is opened to all those present. The idea is that the classical seminar format might be occasionally replaced also by ‘un-seminars’. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the traditional seminar is going to die. However, in several situations a barcamp-style seminar might be a better solution because seminars are used primarily to convey information. Instead, an un-seminar can function as a platform to ask for information. For example, one might have an idea for a research project, and might want to hear what other students and faculty members might think of it. Another might want to set up a research group, and to look for members wishing to join in. Yet another might wish to share opinions and impressions about a new discovery, and so on. The barcamp, un-conference, and un-seminar formats might prove to be a great tool for communicating among students and university members ideas, projects, findings, news, etc. That would also foster a real socialization and new forms of group work, which are not forced and imposed from above, as they are at the present time.

For example: If we see fit, we would all lay out some ideas or projects we would like to work on. I could state that I want to start CosmosKids, @madrush would state he wants to read x book, @Mark_Jabbour would state that he wants a Readers Underground group to form for his new book to receive feedback and spark a great discussion, @achronon states that he need help on learning to combat his curmudgeonous personality and wishes to have a one-on-one session to discuss plans on how to go about this. @KPr2204 wants everyone to visit Virginia and host a weekend retreat to discuss a re-writing of the Bible (KJV -Katina’s Jivin’ Version). @Michael_Stumpf wishes for everyone to bring their best images of metaphorical mapping to the next Cafe so he can compile a list of metaphors to suit his fluid personality.

It may be that only one proposal leads to a separate project. @Mark_Jabbour’s request is met and we make the RU group happen. Everyone elses request didn’t find the followers needed to bring the project into fruition…so they are on the backburner, perhaps. Or forgotten. But not neglected…it may just need the right time…the right place.

I see the Cafe as for EVERYONE (edit: EVERYONE who wishes to participate). Everyone must be here to have voices heard or not, to create a direction or not. or just to chat…that is partly what the Cafe is. To plan separate projects, the Cafe is a great place to try out the barcamp style. But Tuesdays at this particular time to try and cram in everything is not fruitful. We haveany other time available and the skills as adults to start our own projects. We have the tools here to make shit happen, to make projects real. All it takes is a Zoom link and a processing buddy. And a little bit of event planning. The Zoom link is easy enough. The processing needs a bit of work if we were to handle a load of 10+ individuals and their projects. But I believe that we can make things happen.


I like this, Doug, and thanks for showing some signs of life. We arent dead yet!

Yeah, I think we have developed that on the Social Dreaming meet up, And that is a good strategy, for developing a project that requires more attention that can be given at an open frame cafe.

Please note. I have studied improv. A good improvisor always has a purpose and they act upon that purpose with others who also have a purpose. To improv well is a very hard thing to pull off. When you have a processing buddy you can chunk down and chunk slow as we have demonstrated.


They also serve who stand and wait. And I have waited long enough. I still have a lot of living to do.


I would add it is for everyone who wants to participate. Some people may prefer to observe. And that is fine. As long as they keep that preference out in the open. If you are shy and want to protect your ideas you should be careful for they will get used by others here. We are willing to share. That is an aspect of the Culture we have developed here. If you want to be in observer mode that is okay too. But obviously we can’t all be observers all the time. We have to do something once in awhile unless you are extremely privileged.


I can’t wait for bar camp! Going out for a run & will be back with O2 in my blood :wind_chime:



KV: one of my absolute favorites. Even wanted to write a novella involving him. Go figure.


It was a simple/complex question: What is “cosmic time”? and out of that erupted a heated exchange and subsequent accusations, denials, and retreats. @madrush has labeled me the “DJ” (and I can’t recall if that was in private or a personal communication); and that in of itself (w/r/t labels) can/would/should lead to other “infinite conversations”.
Cheers, Merry Christmas etc., and so on and so forth …


My question about Cosmic Time has to do simply with how we would conduct our moment to moment, day to day, week to week (would we still have “weeks”?) or other forms and patterns of time, if our ultimate horizons were infinite and divine. How would we consider our days, and our lives, if we were (as we are) living in the 4th (or even 5th) dimension? What would that practically and concretely mean? And then what if a society organized its own cultural and productive activities in accordance with cosmic time (inclusive of bio, mental, subtle, virtual and other time-forms)—beyond money-time? What would our calendars be like? How would we divide things up…or not? When would everything happen, and by what inner logic or rhythm?

I would like Cosmos (the organization) to sponsor some kind of Cosmic time, which is actualized in our systems and rituals. What if we integrated and transcended mental-rational, as well as magic and mythic time, to establish a new temporal order (out of chaos)? What if we come from the future? What will the world be like then?


What I learned today. I can’t chunk down or chunk slow without a frame. So, Mr. Ed, if you want me to chunk down and chunk slow it would be nice to have a frame. With a frame and a clear outcome I can discover when we get off track or when we get on track. I can manage scales and scopes.

And that’s a very good thing for me to have learned. I hope others learned something, too. I am, however, very concerned that the Cafe is getting a bit chaotic. So each of us perhaps has a different threshold for that. Chaos, for me, is not about chunking down or chunking slow. Chaos happens when there is no frame and no outcome. I still feel we are in the midst of that Frame Crisis.

I worked at the Gay Men’s Health Crisis, Inc, for a number of years. Life and Death are very messy. We lived through weekly bomb threats, we had to take sick people out into the winter cold while we went through the building looking for the bomb. Chaos and order. Chaos I have found is almost always destructive. And I am not wanting to go into that kind of chaos again but hey we may not have a choice about that? Where I am coming from our Culture is complex, not simple. We have few good maps for this territory. Others may have a different kind of social arrangement to draw upon. If there are other patterns that others are picking up on that is great,

Cracking those nuts is not easy for a Crow who has no hands. We have a lot to learn from Crow.


I am not looking for much more to happen in the Café this year, 2018.

I think we’ve had a good run, with all the ups and downs, frames and no-frames. Next week we will discuss Gilead, which for me at least, will represent a fitting end to the year.

I think it would be helpful to start envisioning topics and potential guests for 2019 and get them on a calendar. I like being able to prepare in advance; it’s also helpful to have something to read or watch ahead of time, which gives the group a common object of discussion and gets us on the same page (as much as possible; there are limits).

It might be that we can’t sustain a new topic every week, but should aim for every two weeks instead, which would allow more time for development and follow-up, as well as other initiatves to unfold—including workshops, reading groups, and writing. (Did someobody say somebody was working on a novella? What other personal and underground projects can we bring forth in the coming year? How can I/we/Cosmos be of service to creative emergence?)

I think it would be also potentially good to chunk the Café in terms of seasons—i.e., winter, spring, summer, fall—and try to group together topics in terms of an overarching theme for the season. This would also provide for reflection breaks and transition times between seasons.

I am not sure I like the idea of “Second Order Culture”—it reminds me of Integral Theory’s “Second Tier”—but I am interested in learning more about the idea, and how it might be different. Might Second Order Culture operate on Cosmic Time? Maybe we would need Third Order culture for that? The Crow is puzzled. The Cosmic Crow likes puzzles.

Either way, I want continuing to explore “what’s next” for our culture, society, and civilization—and for us as a group and as individuals—whether this is called Second Order or something else—and I think the Café could be a good place not only to explore but directly experiment with and enact these possibilities in 2019.

I have asked @Douggins to more officially and formally help ‘manage’ the Café—tame the chaos!—so that together we can work on better communication and planning. Every Café needs an organizer, I think. Who’s in charge. This doesn’t mean he will direct all the topics, but rather help set the stage, schedule topics that members of the @ccafe crew initiate, coordinate with guests, and post the recordings.

I think we should also step more fully into the public sphere by promoting the live broadcasts and recordings via podcast and YouTube, etc. And I have talked w/ Doug about adding a short segment at the beginning of our sessions which would allow time for announcements regarding what’s going on on the platform as a whole (e.g., in terms of reading groups, new publications, creative work that’s being done)—something like “this week in Cosmos.” I am imagining this would be a fun segment, which could include guests who may be focused on other projects on this platform, and would help with overall communication, transparency, and developing our audience as well.


This is very Promising & Exciting.Looking forward to the moment of 2019 in Cosmic Time,:fire:within from Feet & Beyond.Prayers,Dancing,Conversation & Jazz,You have my Vote Marco on “What’s Next”…P.S…from M.C.Richards…Three Wisdoms-“Go slow"said the Snail.” Hop!Hop!said the Hare. “Pace yourself"said the Cheetah,” it’s a long Run.I Feel-Think this poem is a good metaphor?


Yes, there are overlaps and differences. What interest me is that Davor is demonstrating through archaeological finding how technology and mind/hand has evolved in groups. Sharing attention is essential. Creating a frame is established early in our development. Pointing and asking " What’s that?" A frame emerges.

A spear is a technological achievement. How do we reverse engineer this? How do we trace the mental processes involved? What is needed? You need a tool to cut the branch. You need a tool to shape the branch into a spear. You need a tool to shape and sharpen the rock that becomes an arrow. You need an adhesive to secure the arrowhead to the shaft. And you need attention to put all these materials and actions together. You need to know how to ‘make a cut’ in your attention. And this technology emerged before writing. There was no sketch pad. So the cognitive capacity of these early techno-cultural ancestors of ours laid down a process that became elaborated in the bow and the arrow and out of that technology advance emerged the use of a trap. There is a direction in complexity, from spear to bow and arrow to trap. When making a trap there has to careful consideration of the animal behavior that you want to trap. This gets more than complicated. The interplay of technology, mind, and culture is complex and follows a direction. It is inter-subjective from the get go.

A big leap happened when the flute was created. A technology emerged for aesthetic purposes. We are on a trajectory that is very directional, not ad hoc or free floating, accidental. There are desired outcomes and actions performed and shared attentions.

I think Davor is looking at the biological, cultural and technological overlaps and he draws upon the latest archeological evidences. He concludes by pointing out the collapse of a first order single eye view into something he calls second order. A cultural shared capacity to hold differences and learn at meta-levels. No individual can come up with these innovations alone. Preserving the sense of an orderly transmission of knowledge is what Culture actually does. And humans are extremely good at this.

We are, in his view, starting to make this big transition as our attentions are shared in ever wider circles and horizons. And this, he claims, is not arbitrary. So the necessity to re-draw our maps of cognition in tandem with others to support these cross overs and overlaps is crucial. As we are at the beginning of this ( Davor dates the start of this Second Order shift at 2010) There is a crisis in systems theory and in Capitalism. These changes are driven by technology. We are not doing a very good job of this.

He does suggest that we might de-couple from the physical and this may be well underway. This would change radically artistic process and audience participation. I wanted to model this kind of re-structuring as we move through the current chaos to a new kind of order. There is not a romanticizing of this chaos. It is extremely dangerous to keep in place the Neo-liberal agendas that are keeping us stuck in a psychic landscape that our technology is moving us beyond at an accelerated pace.Does any of this remind anyone of the internal processes of the Crow?

I think this is a huge leap forward in my sometimes phobic response to technology. I think we might develop alternate ways of thinking/becoming in our cultural set ups but this is a huge shift that is happening and requires in my view a lot more stability that we currently have.

I quipped about the outbreak of Alzheimer’s. I was not making a comment about individuals. I am stressing that this is a cultural trend. The first thing that goes in the onset of dementia is an ability to recognize a frame. There is a lack of capacity to know where the joints are in a social event, where to make the cut, share attention. This can be a harrowing experience. I suggest that without a frame in our current conditions on line it is very easy to start acting like a person with dementia. Timing is off, no one knows who’s in charge, subtle sensory cues, are missed.

So this is a big topic and one that can’t be done in an ad lib kind of way as I failed to make sense of this research yesterday. I just put out a couple of possibilities and you have done, Marco, and I hope something in our efforts will ‘strike a chord.’

I deplore, however, the lack of good feedback. Perhaps a planning session ahead of time, with Doug or anyone else interested, could give us a chance to rehearse feedback. I think this is an art and may need a little bit of practice before we get up to speed with this technology.

Happy Holidays and I imagine that after the first of the Year we will have a perspective on how each of us could better meta- communicate our intentions to one another. There is a ratio between signal and noise that we have to get better at so that our virtual spaces can make sense. I found yesterdays session has some good moments and also a lot of noise. I have yet to differentiate the noise from the signal. Especially as performance in public space can add shame to our already stressed out physiology. I do not want to be a party in shaming anyone in public space. I find that horrifying.


I would be happy to participate in this. Timing is the question. Could we add this as a potential to the chalk board, then schedule it, after feedback from @Douggins and/or others on timing, and maybe other questions?

I am able to provide access to update the board, as is Doug. It is fairly easy to do, and works pretty well. By referencing the objects on the board, Crow will see traffic patterns, Crow will learn where to drop nut. Other crows will see Crow and sees patterns of traffic and Crow, and pattern the patterns, and drop nuts, and eat…


I think pause is a good idea/response. The Christmas/holiday season is a stressful time. Let us get through this season/time, whatever, and rejoin our effect to discern “what the hell is going on?” come next year.
peace and cheers,
Thank goodness for the ‘barcamp’ and excellent therapists!