I am beginning to wonder if ignorance is the new science. Once of course alchemy ruled all, the fruitless and foolish search for that wonderous substance the philosophers stone that could through purely physical means and the interaction of the four pure elements of air, fire, water and earth transform one substance into another, hopefully gold, that being the most sought after precious metal of any age.
Unquestionably the science behind alchemy, I use the word science extremely loosely and without any connectivity to its presently held understanding, is purely allegorical, the philosophers stone being in truth a wholly esoteric object capable of transmuting matter, spirit and idealism with equally ease. The physical transformation of say lead to precious metal was but a practical proof of an all-encompassing theory, of little or no real significance to the alchemist beyond conformation that his or her individual underlying belief in some all-encompassing explanation behind life, the universe and everything was somewhat different from the number forty two so cleverly formulated and fully propagated by Douglas Adams in his three volume masterpiece of highly logical absurdity.
Much to the chagrin of my dearest friend I am inclined to play a rather absurd game. I will state, support and then qualify the most irrational and obvious falsehood with such absurd and impassioned emotion as to make it momentarily seem wholly believable. My reasons for this oft annoying form of jocularity are many, I find repeating absurdity quite delicious and the subtle coloring of the truth equally irresistible, Perhaps most of all I enjoy airing considerations that whilst extremely questionable have sufficient flavor of believability to make them quite irresistible to the palate. In my defense I do immediately admit to my levity, to defend the indefensible would be inappropriate and insulting, completely spoiling the jape. Another subtler reasoning for the continuing usage of such an irreverent gesticulation to moral decency is the inexplicable onset of the disproportionate belief in conspiracies, in imaginary webs of deceit, overtly sectarian societies, in cabals, covens and unsavory posses of all persuasions. By ridiculing, even momentarily the simplistic promotion of such whispers and rumors I find partial release from their general digestion by the masses.
I should also explain that this game, which Kipling was inclined to call ‘The Great Game’, must be conducted incommunicado, entirely without chance of unsolicited eavesdropping, simply for fear of the undesired spread of inane and wholly unfounded tittle-tattle. Years ago I recall playing a parlor game named ‘Chinese Whispers’ that involved a chain of individuals passing quite innocuous but alliterative phrases along the line by way of furtive messaging. If you wish to see how the simple and truthful quite quickly metamorphs to the complex and inane but put this simplistic experiment to a test.
Three or more facts leading to a similar conclusion are quite liable to be wholly unrelated, for reality to be truly as convoluted as the average individual’s paranoia might suggest there would need to be more conspirators than conspired against. The internet, for all its educational benefits has quite successfully and unfortunately created us all equal parts expert and idiot.