Colorless Green Ideas Sleep Furiously.

threadless:

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Colorless Green Ideas Sleep Furiously

The sentence, “Colorless green ideas sleep furiously”, was presented by Chomsky, as a great example of a series of words strung together randomly. Not only is it grammatical according to the lexical classification, and non-sense on a semantic level. Or so goes the claim. But is the claim correct?

A green idea is, according to well established usage of the word “green” is one that is an idea that is new and untried. Again, a colorless idea is one without vividness, dull and unexciting. So it follows that a colorless green idea is a new, untried idea that is without vividness, dull and unexciting. To sleep is, among other things, is to be in a state of dormancy or inactivity, or in a state of unconsciousness. To sleep furiously may seem a puzzling turn of phrase but one reflects that the mind in sleep often indeed moves furiously with ideas and images flickering in and out.

So what is the poet telling us? (One assumes that the quoted line is from the work of a poet working in a medium of studied precision and ambiguity. Or rather, as we shall see…) Very simply the poet seems to be saying that new ideas, not yet sharply defined, circulate in the unconscious, rapidly altering at a furious rate.

One is left then with a question. Why is this nice bit of poetic imagery cited by its author as a quintessentially meaningless sentence? Here we have an exquisite bit of irony. The author evidently has a turn for poetry, a turn which he turns his face against. And the hidden face, the denied self, has taken its revenge. The scientist has called on his creative self to exhibit a bit of nonsense. The poet denied has replied with a sentence, apparently meaningless, which is no such thing when listened to with an attentive ear. And yet consider; this sentence is a very intellectualized production - it is indeed “colorless”. It was, we suspect, a new idea, a variant of a possibility, still new at the very moment of production, one occurring by chance in the froth of the unconscious.

In short, the cited sentence was a colorless green idea that had slept furiously. ”

http://home.tiac.net/~cri/1997/chomsky.html

sirmitchell:

Oscar The Grandiose
Second piece from the upcoming show “The Lovers, The Dreamers, And Me - A Jim Henson Tribute Exhibition.” at Gallery Nucleus.
This was the first idea I had for the show. It took me about 10 tries before I got it right, but I was dead set on making it work.

sirmitchell:

Oscar The Grandiose

Second piece from the upcoming show “The Lovers, The Dreamers, And Me - A Jim Henson Tribute Exhibition.” at Gallery Nucleus.

This was the first idea I had for the show. It took me about 10 tries before I got it right, but I was dead set on making it work.

Journal Entry

If simply being is an action, then being your best is also doing your best. We create our own Hell when we knowingly slack, and we may even become depressed - dead in spirit. Paying attention to what we really want, we each kindle a light and carry them in our own directions. We expand our threshold of pain when we follow our hearts. We cripple ourselves when we don’t; we are hollow. The more pain the can endure, the greater the challenges we can eliminate. 

I’m not exactly sure what I want to do long term, but if I hone my skills then it will take very little drive to move toward those goals. I would ride smoothly without need for tremendous momentum. However, I’m excited about whatever it is. 

I’ve been practicing a sort of introspection in which I acknowledge my assumptions as what I want to believe, regardless of whether I consciously fabricated them or not. In doing so, my attitude toward life has become more moderate and less polarized; consequentially I see the value in work. I have been told that I gratuitously make lists; granted, I don’t much anymore aside from the brief notes highlighted in my mind. The objective is to live with a sense of balance and attention devoted toward every random, interesting, unprecedented thing that comes my way.

Experimenting with intoxicants and indulging in swaths of games reminds me that this luxurious lifestyle is tapering off into an end. Following my heart is no longer something I tinker with, it’s a matter of strict necessity. It follows that daddling is no longer an option, and that there is no need to be nervous or repulsed by my path in life.

For instance, while I tagged along with friends in the past for amusement, my drive for blending in has solidified like iron. The world does not work as efficiently as its paperwork, and its paperwork can be tampered with anyway. I need to have a crowd so that someone with vouch for me when our capricious world turns against me. I don’t need a stable support structure, I need a flexible one. 

It’s ironic how the words that may have shaken you to the very core hold little power in the eyes of their speaker. The past 2 years of my life have been molded by a code I took to heart but ultimately held the most meaning to me. Based on my decisions, I would say that it is paramount that I live a loving life.