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By Jonathan Carroll

In Jonathan Carroll's surreal masterpiece, Bathing the Lion, 5 those who reside within the similar New England city nod off one evening and all proportion an identical hyper-realistic dream. a few of these humans be aware of one another; a few don’t.

When they wake day after today them all recognize what has occurred. All 5 have been at one time “mechanics,” a type of cosmic repairman whose activity is to maintain order within the universe and freshen up the messes made either via sentient beings and the totally fearsome but inevitable Chaos that periodically rolls via, wreaking mayhem anyplace it touches down—a type of infinitely robust, cruel twister. as the activity of a mechanic is grueling and onerous, after a definite interval them all are retired and despatched to assorted components of the cosmos to dwell out their days as "civilians." Their stories are cleaned and new identities are created for them that healthy the locations they visit reside out their ordinary lives to the tip.

For the 1st time all retired mechanics are being introduced again to responsibility: Chaos has a brand new plan, and it's now not taking a look reliable for mankind...

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17 (a) A sensation of a blue rectangle. (b) b l u e r e ctangle. W e A causal connection producing a sensation. (c) might call it a sensa- Light rays. (d) The Mind. tion of a blue rectangle. When we are perceiving the book and, in some special sense, seeing the blue and rectangular surface of the book, what we are seeing is out there in this tough sense, right where the book is. Philosophers tended to say, "Well, really that's somehow a radical illusion of some kind. " This is a move which is very tempting to make: we are conscious of the blue rec­ tangular expanse but it is a sensation.

But, with the development of modern theories of light, this reasoning vanished because all you need to see blue is a certain wave­ length of light at your eyes; you do not need to suppose that the object is blue, in any interesting sense. Let me speak of the aesthetically interesting sense of blue, the sense of blue which artists are concerned with, the kind of blue which is exciting, depressing, makes a nice contrast and so on. You see, in ordinary naive experience, we think of color in the nice, aesthetic sense as where?

Take that seriously: in some sense there ob· viously are meanings. " I made a parallel point in the case of minds; in one sense there obviously are minds. Jones has a good mind; Smith has a bad mind. What is going on in his mind? How can we speak of his mind if he has none? In some sense there are minds, in the commonsense sense. It's trivial! it's a truth that there are minds. But, then, what are minds? Once you ask, then you start getting a theory of minds. You have all the interesting kinds of theories as to what minds are.

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