Future Fossils

06 May 2022 03:43 - 21 May 2022 12:25
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    • A podcast from Michael Garfield, who has some connection to the Santa Fe Institute and covers somewhat woo-ish science. Interestingly, I have a lot more trouble digesting this than I do Weird Studies, although they are close in the podcast-space. I think it's because WS is art+woo, which makes sense to me, art is kind of woo anyway, and to the extent I have opinions about it, they are similar to those of the hosts. it challenges. Whereas science+woo produces a mental dissonance for me, and I have problems resolving it, I always want to start an argument.
    • Nonetheless there's a lot of interesting stuff here. I'm not going to give it a page per episode though.
    • 182 - Siv Watkins on Microanimism: Living with The Smalls

      • Siv Watkins is a microbiologist and "ritualist". This had something to say about attributing agency to microorganisms and relating to them as agents, but it was frustratingly confused from my perspective. A lot of talk about how we shouldn't think of (eg) a rabies virus as evil, its just doing its thing. That is the opposite of an agentive approach! Is it just a machine just doing its thing, or an enemy? They cited a lot of science fiction that involved the dissolution of boundaries or building collective hybrid organisms (Octavia Butler, Greg Bear). A notable omission: Norman Spinrad's Carcinoma Angels.
      • Anyway, her theory of microanimism is obviously in my wheelhouse and glad to have been exposed to it. It's a whole schtick
        • Microanimism is a platform for examining and developing how human beings can consciously relate to and engage with microbial organisms.
        • Microanimism I: Thinking Like a Plague examines what we know we know about the microbial universe, and introduces a ritual approach to developing a different type of connection to the smalls.
        • Microanimism II: Microbiological Dark Matter begins to probe what we know we don’t know about the microbial domain, expanding the ritual practice embarked upon during TLAP.
        • Microanimism III: And So, Ad Infinitum - an investigation of what we don’t know we don’t know about the microbial plane
    • 186 - A Manifesto for Weird Science

      • Riffing against Dawkins, a popular target, he symbolizes everything scientistic.
      • Our Lady of Fatima – it is interesting as a phenomenon, to dismiss it as "mass hallucination" is to miss the interestingness.
      • Oy vey leaning heavily into astrology, that's a bit too much for me
      • Wants a rigorous quantified science of the weird – but I thought the WS guys, at least, think the paranormal is inherently outside of the quantifying grasp of science, which certainly is convenient.