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MEslaymaker

MEslaymaker

 

 

Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid - Douglas R. Hofstadter I've been keeping this bedside and reading devotionally, like some people read the Bible, and "The Basic Laws of Arithmetic" hit me like a bunch of begats. Thought about skimming and skipping ahead, but no matter how far I flipped it felt like being stuck in the Pentateuch, in Leviticus, or Numbers! Maybe it's seasonal (it is spring), but it is going to be such a while before I return to this that I'm moving it to had-to-stop-hope-to-finish. I'm still listening to a lot of Bach and would like to keep him in the reading mix, but other titles are just too tempting right now.


Notes from my status updates on what I've read so far:

""Beethoven tells you what it's like to be Beethoven and Mozart tells you what it's like to be human. Bach tells you what it's like to be the universe." — Douglas Adams"


"The plot thickens: Just as mathematics seemed to be recovering from one set of paradoxes -- those related to the theory of limits, in the calculus -- along came a whole new set, which looked worse! The most famous is Russell's paradox."


"Sounds from a strange loop: the enigmatic Canon 1 à 2 from Bach's Musical Offering (1747). A single musical sequence that is played front to back and back to front. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xUHQ2ybTe... "While in the course of study one may discover unending subtleties, one is never at a loss to grasp the unity that holds together every single creation by Bach.""


""Magically, after six modulations, the original key of C minor has been restored. In this canon, Bach has given us our first example of the notion of the strange loop. The strange loop phenomenon occurs whenever, by moving up or down through the levels of some hierarchical system, we unexpectedly find ourselves right back where we started. As we go on, the theme of a strange loop will recur again and again.""

"Published 1979 but timeless, so I'll not fret about being behind. I expect its 800 pages to remain on the bedside table for some while (speaking of time), my idea of a bible to which I'll turn at the start or close of the day, or in the middle of the night. Devotional reading, inspiration, revelation."