Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Quiddity Means Quality 69

Quiddity as defined by the Free Dictionary
quiddity, noun
1. The real nature of a thing; the essence.
2. A hairsplitting distinction; a quibble.

Quality as defined by The Free Dictionary

quality, noun

1. a. an inherent or distinguishing characteristic, a property
b. a personal trait, especially a character trait
2. Essential character; nature
3. a. Superiority of kind
b. Degree or grade of excellence
4. a. High social position
b. Those in high social position
5 Music: Timbre, as determined by harmonics
6 Linguistics: the character of a vowel sound (based on specifics)
7 Logic: the positive or negative character of a proposition
Having a high degree of excellence

So Quiddity is whatness and quality is a specific whatness – generally the degree of excellence.

If you will, quality, particularly excellence, are the important manifestations of quiddity (though quiddity itself may be concerned with the essence of very trivial things and, as such, serves in trivial matters to be an invitation to quibble). We know we can trust the architecture of The Great and Secret Show because of the familiarity and sense made by the lessons the implied narrator is giving us. It is less than half a step to see that these lessons are about excellence and the avoidance of substitutes for excellence. We are most sensitive to excellence the day we're born, the day we die and the night we are with our true love.

We can assume that we are on track, since it was a breakdown in the proper evaluation of excellence that caused the musical war described in early postings. Further, excellence was missing from the auditing firms, banks and regulators in the lead-up to the present financial crisis.
In The Great and Secret Show, the purity of the Sea of Quiddity must be preserved. The Isle of Ephemeris contains no mediocrity. The enemies of this architecture of quality, the Iad Urboros, seek destruction of Quiddity and of sentient life here on earth (in the Cosm) in pursuit of singularity, which is oneness but also sameness, which is a quality-free utopia. The author, Clive Barker, has written a second horror fantasy about Quiddity, Everville, being the Second Book of the Art. The third book is overdue and not forthcoming; Barked tells us why. Everville was so difficult to write, so excruciating. All these difficulties are consistent with the blog author's assertion that quality represents the significant and dominant types of quiddity.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting statement by Barker. That deserves deeper meditation. And explains a lot about "the world".