a certain Chinese encyclopedia

animals are divided into:
(a) belonging to the Emporer
(b) embalmed
(c) tame
(d) sucking pigs
(e) sirens
(f) fabulous
(g) stray dogs
(h) included in the present classification
(i) frenzied
(j) innumerable
(k) drawn with a very fine camelhair brush
(l) et cetera
(m) having just broken the water pitcher
(n) that from a long way off look like flies.

~ Borges


The Theoretical Fixed Point in the Turbulent Aeviternity

Today we know the heavens are not fixed, but in a state of ongoing motion. Physicists today talk of an infinite, gradient web of vectors, matter under the influence of four or five distinct tendencies, at the entire range of scales. As evidence, our age-old quest to measure and predict the precise movement of our planet, to know the length of a day, is continually confounded by variations in orbit, rotation, precession, nutation, and combinations of smaller, fuzzier movements.

The universe is, by definition, constant, pervasive action. All things in motion at all times, to paraphrase Aristotle. Every speck vibrates. Every galactic cloud is turbulent. You perceive the falling of a book, from table to floor, only as a motion relative to your own; because, remember, that you too, are in always in motion. A fixed point can only be the Eye of God. "Whole simultaneous" and "interminable" says Aquinas.

From the Catholic religion comes the notion of an alternative temporal reality, aeviternity, outside but integral to our plane of existence, lying between the fleet cosmos of human perception and the infinite dimensionlessness of eternity. This is the realm of angels, who neither suffer the passing of time as mortals, nor share in the omnipresence of gods. Aeviternity is distinct from other super-cosmological dwellings of the divine, from Heaven to Hell, Svarga to Naraka, the Happy Hunting Grounds or Mt. Olympus, in that it is identified specifically by its dimensional relationship to the universe of humankind. It is a scholastic solution for understanding what lies between us and the ultimate Divine Eternal, the proposal of which, incidentally, generates more puzzles. A mystery box packed with more mysteries, such is the way of the universe, and therein lies the charm of an Aeviternity, and therefore evaporates some body of conceptual doubt as to whether it contains some inherent analogical truth.