Welcome to series three of the Great Humbling – ‘New Moves’. And given that we’re returning on the 1st of April, which is obviously no accident, your first move is… Keep It Foolish!
“A deliberately non-sensical parting farewell, popularised in the TV programme ‘Nathan Barley’. It approximately means ‘see you later’ and ‘don’t take life too seriously’.”
‘Totally Mexico! How the Nathan Barley nightmare came true’ by Andrew Harrison – https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2015/feb/10/nathan-barley-charlie-brooker-east-london-comedy
We catch up on what we’ve both been up to…
Ed saving ‘The Locks Inn’ www.savethelocks.com, publishing his poetry collection ‘Songs of Love in Lockdown’ and his ‘other podcast’ Jon Richardson and the Futurenauts – ‘How to survive the future’
Dougald references John Paul Davis – Small Magic – https://johnpauldavis.substack.com
Dougald’s got a book just coming out with the glass artists Monica Guggisberg and Philip Baldwin, Walking in the Void, mentions an extract running on the Dark Mountain website and a new Homeward Bound course starting in early May
Dougald reading Vanessa’s book, Hospicing Modernity, which is coming out later this year
Dougald talks about Resmaa Menakem saying I don’t bring white bodies and black bodies together to do this kind of work on embodied trauma, because that’s not going to be a safe environment for the people with black bodies
https://onbeing.org/programs/resmaa-menakem-notice-the-rage-notice-the-silence/ – Resmaa Menakem on the On Being podcast
‘Keep it foolish’, to be willing to see and sense and stay with your own ridiculousness
Ed talks about the origins of April Fool’s Day, Scotland’s ‘Huntigowk Day’ and the etymology of ‘Fool’ and explains why the Old Testament the word ‘fool’ is actually a crude translation of five different Hebrew words, which actually discern very different types of fool…
Dougald references Rilke – “I want to unfold. I don’t want to stay folded anywhere, because where I am folded , there I am a lie.”
The experience of feeling foolish, discovering your foolishness, being willing to own it – maybe it’s like a medical operation, having one of those lies removed, you’re more alive as a result
Dougald talks about Lydia Millet’s, A Children’s Bible: A Novel and how the parents in it are these smart people, successful in their own worlds, are fools once they stumble out of those niches…
Ed refers to “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself — and you are the easiest person to fool.” Richard Feynman
And then introduces Edward Docx ‘The Clown King: How Boris Johnson made it by playing the fool’: https://www.theguardian.com/news/2021/mar/18/all-hail-the-clown-king-how-boris-johnson-made-it-by-playing-the-fool
As Kierkegaard puts it: “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” Johnson has accomplished both.
Dougald talks about a fascinating essay by a man called Samo Burja who is a Long Now fellow and a founder of Bismarck Analysis, called ‘The End of Industrial Society’
“We have lost the implicit knowledge upon which our industrial systems functioned even as recently as a few decades ago. That knowledge cannot be regained absent the people who actually built and understood those systems.”
Ed talks about the tragic poetic image of the gargantuan cargo ship the ‘Ever Given’ and the paradox of the ‘Wise Fool’, Plato’s Cave, and the Socratic Paradox ‘I know that I know nothing’! The wisest of all fools?
Are we wise enough to play the fool? Or foolish enough to be played by one?
Dougald concludes What if the only chance we have is to reveal our foolishness to ourselves and each other? The only possibility of stumbling into some as-yet-unimaginable future. Maybe it’s what I was trying to get at back in the early days of Dark Mountain: ‘stop pretending’