Otto Vangelis

The Experience that Smiles Back


ISSUE 66 | EMPIRICISM | JUL 2016

Empiricism, the theory that all knowledge is derived from sense-experience, is beautiful for all the swirls and loops we might find ourselves in when we remember what empiricists often forget: that all knowledge produced from sense experience is not produced as knowledge, but as bits and pieces of the world, scribbled on paper, typed up in books, depicted in graphs and hopefully imagined as more than just dry pulp and ink collecting dust in the downstairs stacks of the Library of Physics, Chemistry, Biology—the temples of interpreting The-World-As-It-Is (so long as we get results, so long as we can change the world and twist it into prettier things or, if it is pretty enough at as it is, keep it that way to save it from the destructive forces of human habits, from the lust, the war, the greed, from the laziness of leaving trash behind in the forest, or from the clumsiness of tripping over the yellow tape into an exhibition at the Natural Museum of History, upsetting the order of nature by knocking over the buffalo into the field painted under a blue horizon that stretches west like all blue horizons—because that is what knowledge is: clear and precise, mapping relations from subjects onto objects or predicates without ambiguity, so long as it is either true or false, as long as it is true, or mostly true, or truly true for the time being, or known to be false but only in the future, which can’t be known because the future can’t be experienced unless enough past experiences have prepared you, or someone you trust (based on past experiences) for a past future experience that you expected and adequately prepared for through a number of predictions that have been confirmed by you, or your colleague or by an author recommended by your colleague but not recommended by yourself to yourself because that would constitute bias and we all know bias isn’t pretty and things that aren’t pretty aren’t suitable partners for the lifelong commitment that is the road to knowledge because truly who would want to marry an idea that isn’t pretty, an idea with flaws or imperfections, an idea that might lead you astray, down the wrong path into a dark alley or seedy motel where thoughts are fleeting, impermanent, intense but ephemeral like mere feelings—no, proper knowledge ought to be experienced with more weight and heft, or like an ox dragging your face through the sand, with your foot caught in the yoke until you can see light, the blinding light of true experience, experience experienced as knowledge, a knowledge experience or, a knowledge-derived experience that experience-derived knowledge is derived and experienced from leading to an experience of an experience as knowledge which is of course known to be a knowledge experience by an unfortunate series of past experiences clearly summarized in the old adage “we know not to touch the pot because we touched the pot and the pot was hot” or was it, “we know not to touch the pot because we’ve touched things before that were hot and we can do the math”, or “we know we can touch the pot, so long as mother isn’t looking, ouch”, or “we know not to touch the pot because we know what a pot is and we know what hot is and we know that anything, including a pot, plus hot plus touching isn’t pretty except in the cases where ‘hot’ means ‘pretty’”, in any case an experience was experienced as an experience, or at least an experience was experienced and somehow experiences can be experienced as they are (as experiences) or as other things they aren’t (i.e. as knowledge), the former being not very helpful, and the latter being far more truthful and therefore helpful which let me assure you insures that the experience was truthful to begin with, not that there are any experiences that aren’t truthful, after-all all experiences are experiences, especially experiences that are clearly and unambiguously experiences because as they say, “how could you experience something unless you experienced it yourself?” or “wouldn’t you like to experience it, first hand?” or “Where's The Experience?”, “Keep going well, keep going Experience.”, “The magic of Experience.”, “Experience, since 1632.”, “Experience, it's a kind of magic.”, “Make Room for the Experience.”, “Get more from life with Experience.”, “Something Special In The Experience.”, “All Experience, All The Time.”, “Passion for Experience.”, “Experience - The Revolution.”, “The Experience that Smiles Back.”, “Put Experience in your pipe and smoke it!”, “Nobody doesn't like Experience.”, “Spreads Straight from the Experience.”, “The Experience man.”, “Can You Tell Experience From Butter?”, “All You Add Is Experience.”, “Experience, where success is at home.”, “Experience - You see this name, you think dirty.”, “Sometimes You Feel Like an Experience, Sometimes You Don't.”, “It's Not All Experience, Experience, Experience, you know.”, “Experience, you can't live without it.”, “One goal, one passion - Experience.”, “We All Adore an Experience.”, “Experience. It's What's For Dinner.”, “All The Experience That's Fit To Print.”, “Experience goes on and on.”, “Only The Crumbliest Flakiest Experience.”, “I'd sleep with Experience.”, “Experience on the outside, tasty on the inside.”, “Everyone wants an Experience.”, “It's A Bit Of An Experience.”, “Time To Make The Experience.”, “My Experience to Yours.”, “The Experience That Refreshes.”, “Experience the time is now.”, “I need Experience right now.”, “We're Serious About Experience.”, “We Build Experience,” because any knowledge system doesn’t actually produce “knowledge”, it produces a leap of faith whereby an experience is imagined as something else, as data, as a confirmation, as a piece to a puzzle and no matter how many attempts to reduce experience to something more primitive or fundamental like “sense-data”, the power of producing knowledge emerges from the recombinatory potentials that experiences are open to—the uncomfortable reality that experience is extendable, moldable, mod-able and essentially caught in up in derivations upon derivations such that empiricism is the theory that all that is derived is derived is derived—which apart from being circular is far from meaningless: it clues us into a fruitful moment between knowledge and experience, representation and represented, where an active translation occurs: a function capable of passing functions to functions: a map that draws experiences together, and despite being un-experienceable is mappable and yet, more importantly, remappable in all senses: from cartography to texture mapping: it is routes, paths, topographies, textures, and tones; it is representational, generative, sci-fi fantasy and mercantile; it is playable but bounded and like all video games there are the three aesthetic tensors from which you can build a number of aesthetic vectors, or judgments that define the range of experience in terms of a primitive logic for which the basic tensor units of this coordinate system are: 1) Slooty, 2) Immersive, and 3) Lore-friendly—categories that ought to keenly map onto the Hegelian categories of thesis, antithesis and synthesis—because it is the aspirational trifecta of slooty, immersive and lore-friendly that all knowledge platforms wish to emulate but can only ever approximate with shitty bootleg resolution, as each category is endlessness mod-able and extendable, reformulating the very base for measuring the vector length of any game or map between experiences such that even the most slooty, immersive and lore-friendly mod will exceed either the slootiness, immersiveness, or lore-friendliness of the experience function itself and thus to formulate any truth requires a laboring balance of the accumualtion of slootiness, immersiveness and lore-friendliness or, in other words, the knowledge product is always already an element of the experience economy whereby verisimilitude is achieved only as a shadowy projection of a much less “easy-mode” combination of a variables x sense-data that naive/n00b empiricism might attempt to formulate in a characteristic poser “beast-mode” empiricism as “the theory that all knowledge is derived from the experience economy,” even though this too fails to address the dynamic tendency of lore-friendliness to reduce to slootiness, while slootiness in turn degnerates parabolically into immersiveness, and immersiveness itself renders into the lore-friendly such that the three, interpreted logically produces a trilemma, but interpreted topologically inculcate an ouroboric Triquetra or, the Trefoil knot, whose operative tension Thomas Aquinas and J.J. Abrams termed Felicity—the ultimate happiness—and according to Wikipedia, “In 2007, Felicity was one of Time magazine's "100 Best TV Shows of All-Time."[1]” so clearly, ultimate happiness is the slootiest immersiveness in all that is lore-friendly. #blessedbe