Author Topic: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...  (Read 14383 times)

LMNO

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Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« on: February 05, 2008, 03:51:59 pm »
So, I was looking at that snazzy chao up top there, and I was thinking that perhaps the Taoism reference is a bit much nowadays.  I appreciate the sentiment, with order and disorder complementing each other in Chaos, but maybe one of you designers could try something else...

Re-inventing the wheel, I know, but maybe the questions could be "what is that" rather than "Why are you ripping off taoism?"

Jasper

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2008, 04:12:34 pm »
Hmm.  Golden apple in a pyramid, maybe.  Or an 8-pointed star.  Both have unrelated stigmas, but maybe that's ok.

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2008, 04:14:44 pm »
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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2008, 04:23:40 pm »
i dunno, it's a symbol. we have more of them, the five fingered hand of eris, the kallisti-engraved apple ..

in the case of discordianism, i like having symbols, simply for being able to stamp something "this has discordian origin", sometimes you want that (and other times you want to KYFMS)
((i also like symbols because i think symbolism is pretty and interesting, like metaphores in poetry, but i don't think that's really relevant in this discussion))

i dont think the "ripping off taoism" is much of a problem. if someone'd be giving you a hard time over the tao-ripoff of that symbol (which it is, it is a ripoff, no sense in denying that), i think you'd be in pretty much the same boat if we had a different symbol, but then they'd be nagging about something else.

finally, i would like to remark, to whoever made this particular pic, that it is wrong. if you trace the sides of the pentagon, you will find a downwards pointing pentagram. i explicitly read somewhere (i think it was in the Illuminatus Trilogy) that the pentagon is oriented in such a way that it forms neither the inside of a downwards pentagram, nor the inside of an upwards pentagram, but is exactly in between, resulting in a sidewards pointing pentagram.
the easiest way to make sure of this, is to not have the top or the bottom edge be exactly horizontal, but to have either the left or the right edge of the pentagon be exactly vertical (i personally prefer the right edge, for some vague aesthetical reason)
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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2008, 04:31:34 pm »
So, I was looking at that snazzy chao up top there, and I was thinking that perhaps the Taoism reference is a bit much nowadays.  I appreciate the sentiment, with order and disorder complementing each other in Chaos, but maybe one of you designers could try something else...

Re-inventing the wheel, I know, but maybe the questions could be "what is that" rather than "Why are you ripping off taoism?"

Thoughts:
The Yin and Yang might fit if we use the Renzai school metaphor (and Taoists don't usually mind the ripoff)... and I think it might work as a memetic entity, since it can make use of the existing memetic material in the mind of the individual, making it easier to add new material.

In support of the Chao I would say this:
1. The Sacred Chao has existed as a meme for 30+ years, its in the wild and not something likely to disappear... and I feel (as I do with all of the old memes) that exploring the new doesn't require abandoning the old.
2. Every religion appears to rip off symbols and memes from other religions. I think the Sacred Chao is a spoof of that tendency and thus makes a useful point.
3. The sacred chao (as I mentioned above) has some very useful features for metaphor/map/modeling.

In support of a new symbol I would say:
1. The more symbols we can create the better... symbols tend to make great vehicles for memes and ideas.
2. The Yin-Yang makes one think of balance and harmony. The Sacred Chao though, IMO, should evoke the idea of a teeter-totter (escalation of Order -> escalation of Disorder) rather than static balance and a cacophony rather than harmony.
3. There are a lot of new ideas which aren't in the PD, these new concepts should be included in our symbolism... not all of the old ones work.

"And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the new wine will burst the skins and will be spilled, and the skins will be destroyed. But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. And no one after drinking old wine desires new wine, but says, “The old is good.” " - Some Jew from 2000 years ago... or some fiction writer from more recently)

We have new ideas, but like new wine, they're still working and taste green. If we try to mash these new ideas into our old symbols the symbols will probably suffer a critical failure when the new ideas outgrow the old symbols. However, the old ideas and old symbols have been around working for ages. They taste good and they are filled with meaning...

Both appear necessary to me, otherwise we'd drink all of the old and have nothing left to pass to the next crop of Erisian Freaks.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2008, 04:36:04 pm by Ratatosk »
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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2008, 04:43:43 pm »
I see the point about the Chao, but don't quite follow your intent.  Yes, the Chao could be called a ripoff or mockery of the Tao, (albeit in a more lightheared and thought - out way than an inverted cross ), but I don't follow why anyone should shy away from creating inquiry or confusion, it does give an excuse to refer people to the Principia.  Depending on your angle, that may or may not be good.  

Hmm.  Golden apple in a pyramid, maybe.  Or an 8-pointed star.  Both have unrelated stigmas, but maybe that's ok.

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2008, 04:45:32 pm »
addition: i don't like the 8 pointed star because people will associate that with Warhammer, also i don't want to deal with War Hammer geeks making remarks about it (yeah i know a couple of ppl on this board play Warhammer, i dont intend to say you guys are geeks, but you gotta admit that a lot of them are).

then, the 8 pointed star is also a traditional symbol from Chaos Magick. TBH, while Chaos Magick has some definite overlap with discordianism, I would like to distance myself from that as well. Discordians practicing Chaos Magick, do what you will, but for me I do not want that instant association.

I like the Chao because i can scribble it on something (try and practice drawing a good pentagon, it's not as easy as it seems :-P), and when somebody asks me about it, I can tell them.

Of course the same argument of Taoism goes for Warhammer and Chaos Magick (although afaik, the Warhammer symbol is also a ripoff based on Chaos Magick). But I think the important distinction here is that Discordians have been using the Sacred Chao for nearly 50 years now, and I think we can call it our own now. Maybe we just need to plaster it all over the place more.

Another interesting visual distinction of the Chao vs the Tao, is that the two parts of the Tao are painted symmetrically with black and white, while the Chao isn't. Instead, sometimes, the little corners/points of both parts are sometimes made black and shaded to white outwards [as shown here: http://www.principiadiscordia.com/book/10.php ]
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LMNO

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2008, 04:52:05 pm »
In the spirit of comprimise what if we changed the S-shape divinding the two into a Z shape, or something similar?  or maybe even a blurred edge, to symbolize that orderly disorder, and vice versa?

Cain

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2008, 04:56:24 pm »
Our symbol should be a black swan, on a jagged line of infinite length, with a fractal in the background.

Jasper

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2008, 04:57:02 pm »
I think the absence of light and dark in the chao is good.  It's not a visual contrast between hodge and podge, it's symbolic.

Also, the black swan is a great idea.

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2008, 04:58:14 pm »
Our symbol should be a black swan, on a jagged line of infinite length, with a fractal in the background.




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Jasper

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #11 on: February 05, 2008, 04:58:51 pm »

Cain

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #12 on: February 05, 2008, 04:59:47 pm »
A butterfly is an acceptable subsitute, although the stylized black swan on the book cover is also pretty swote.

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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #13 on: February 05, 2008, 05:23:16 pm »
In the spirit of comprimise what if we changed the S-shape divinding the two into a Z shape, or something similar?  or maybe even a blurred edge, to symbolize that orderly disorder, and vice versa?

well all those things would be nice ideas if it was 40 years ago. we could make a new symbol, but there's no way ever to get all discordians in one line again in using it.

and personally, i like the shading in the points as it is now better than a Z shape or a blurred edge.
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Re: Actual PD discussion: About that Chao...
« Reply #14 on: February 05, 2008, 05:27:36 pm »
I support the use of a 7-pointed star, because it looks funky and it shows the world that even we Discordians can tell the Law of Fives to go suck on a toilet brush if we so choose.