Literature


innate knowledge Humanity created literature - it is an expression of human consciousness.

Knowledge and ideas conveyed through the form of literature are but one way humanity "professes" the products of human consciousness. That is to say, the human mind has something compelling the sharing of knowledge in many ways - but literature is among the most widely used, and historically has served as the baseline of
conveying shared stories and knowledge.

Literature is so much part of our daily lives, as books, movies, stories, and more - that we are
hardly aware of the fact that these stories come only from the human mind. Occasionally, an
author produces a work that captivates a large audience. In order for this to happen the author
must have experienced life within a culture to understand and write about it. And the audience
must share some aspects of that culture or their shared humanity in order to be able to connect
with the work, or it would be too foreign for them to comprehend. In other words, there is a very
close relationship between the culture an author is part of, and whether what they have perceived
and written about will be recognized and understood by enough people to make their work
successful.

Over time, as cultures change and human consciousness does also, the stories change in form, but those stories have a tendency for the essential content to repeat or be repeated.  We see the same themes endlessly told and re-told like a movie clip that is looped - and that in itself raises a question as to why these same stories are the ones that we choose to tell and re-tell. Given this tendency we have to ask what the purpose is of re-telling the same stories. What is it about them that we do not "get" or understand, what need do they fulfill in people that they gain so much attention and shared approbation which we see and understand as being the case with the way they persist over time?

What is the hunger for stories at all? It's an interesting question - what exactly do people seek in stories? Why did our ways of telling stories change from the earliest of oral traditions to having
stories in text form, then in picture form with the advent of 'movies'? 

There is another hidden purpose to the invention of literature that is part of the secret of human consciousness. Of course, in this we're referring to "good" literature, or the "great" literature of the classics, not some of the stuff generically called 'pulp' or other genres for which the term literature
is misused. Literature, good literature - is defined thus: literature /n. 1 written works, esp. those
whose value lies in beauty of language or in emotional effect.
 

There are of course many types of literature, the epic, romance, and so forth - but they all share
in common that they seek to understand something about humanity in a particular way - and that purpose is intentional. That purpose is never explicitly stated, it is simply implicit and inherent to literature at all - literature is meant to do something for humanity. It is meant to aid humanity in
some way - it is not by accident. That purpose is part of the broader stage of human consciousness and history - and it's been hidden in plain sight.

Can you imagine what it is?

Ralph Waldo Emerson, in his essay "Circles" had this to say:

Literature is a point outside of our hodiernal circle, through which a new one may be described. The use of literature is to afford us a platform whence we may command a
view of our present life, a purchase by which we may move it. We fill ourselves with
ancient learning, install ourselves the best we can in Greek, in Punic, in Roman houses,
only that we may wiselier see French, English, and American houses and modes of living.
In like manner, we see literature best from the midst of wild nature, or from the din of affairs, or from a high religion. The field cannot be well seen from within the field. The astronomer must have his diameter of the earth’s orbit as a base to find the parallax of
any star.


What is the phenomenon that culminated in humanity needing to find a way to stand outside
itself, outside its own thought and consciousness?  What tradition did we start from that requires change and remediation, and if it is true that humanity seeks remediation then how and what might
we understand ourselves to require remediation from? What occurred that humanity needed to find
a way to stand outside itself and how can we explain the need to see from outside the field? Do we take this to be a normal condition of the human mind?

Or is this an indication that something went wrong, or that something went missing in human consciousness that requires us to get out of ourselves. Plato suggested the same with the "Allegory
of the Cave", in which he suggested that humans were akin to sitting in a cave, with the only light coming from a projector behind them which they could not see - and the images of life they saw on the wall were only images - cast by the projector.

And too, we have to ask what images got loaded into the projector and by whom? Plato suggested that one day a person might stand up, turn around and see the  projector and see that they were in
a cave - and decide to leave. On leaving, he said, that person would find himself out in the full light
of day (reality) and would find themselves blinded having been in the dark so long.

And then, even Plato was writing - Philosophy is indeed a form of literature - and it too suffers the same vagaries of the limitations of awareness.

What happened? What was lost that we seek through literature in it many forms and genres?

What is the secret function of Literary Criticism? The truth is surprising.


More to come.
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