Wordcarpenter Books
From the book Zeitqualia

The Inflected Matrix:

When I opened my eyes I immediately felt the tightness of my skin. I reached for my water bottle and for food in my bag and feasted. For a moment I didn't know if it was dusk or dawn. Doppel was hunched over reading Kant's Critique of Pure Reason.

"Good to polish up on my Kant."

"Why's that?"

"Well, because the guy is such an intellect!"


"Maybe, but with purpose. Has some good ideas about time."


"He says that man has a natural intuition of time and space, and that time is quanta continua, meaning it must be looked at as continual because otherwise time and space would just be an empty point. An instant in the time continuum can only be a point, and a point in time by definition is void of any length of time. Therefore points of time would be 0 + 0 + 0 + 0. Time therefore must always be considered as duration. Kant says ‘the continuity of time is ordinarily designated by the term flowing or flowing away.' See, he's got it."

"But Kant never traveled more than 40 miles from his home over his entire lifetime. Not much a Viking-Poet."


"So a point in time becomes an instant merely at the beginning or end of a finite duration."

"The problem with that is that we are forced, it seems, to define the present as the end of the past and the beginning of the future."

"The now would then be void."

"So that's why it must be duration. And in that duration there should be qualia."

"How can we see both duration and points in time?"

"Ah! You put your finger on what I was just reading about. Kant calls it transcendental schema. It is the magical function we have in the imagination that bridges between instants in time and the sensibility of time as duration. He says this schema is the synthesis of perception with the representation of time. It is the filling in of time."

"What does the word schema mean outside of the world of Kant?"

"Schema is the orderly arrangement of parts, as in a philosophic system. It's the rover force that makes time, as defined as an infinite series of instants, intelligible as a quantum flow. He says of this that it is ‘art concealed in the depths of the human soul, whose real modes of activity nature is hardly likely to ever allow us to discover, and to have open to our gaze.'"

"That's some heavy stuff there maestro."

"Well, Kant never undertook exploits. That's why it was never revealed to him. But it has been to us. I think Kant's transcendental schema is that faculty in us that inflects logic, like I was talking about before. If this schema is a product of the imagination, like he says it is, then it could be that sensible thing that bridges our sense perception and bends our natural logical apparatus to that sense data in the natural world." I sat down and he sketched out what he meant on a piece of paper and handed it to me.

"See, this is what I mean. An inflected matrix."      



"See, the illusion of a perfect match eludes even the keenest of logicians."

"What exactly is inflection?"

"Think of the word ‘flex.' Inflection is an angle or bend, or a modulation in the voice. It is a change in a plane curve from convex to concave. It's a pattern of change in form undergone by words to express grammatical and syntactical relations. To inflect is to vary the tone of pitch of the voice, or modulate. It is to turn from a straight or usual course, and to bend. To inflect is to give or recite the inflections of a word by conjugating or declining. It is to alter the form of a word by inflection. Comes from the Latin inflectere, meaning ‘to bend.'"

"Thus the bent lines in your sketch."

"See, Kant believes that we don't learn math, we discover math. He believes that we are born with a logical system in our heads and that reading mathematics is discovering a dormant language. It awakens the logical system. If the logical system is accurately represented by, for example, symbolic logic, then a logical system must be linear in nature. But the way we actually intuit logic from the empirical world is with this organic, time-sensitive bendable logic. And it's this transcendental schema that Kant mentions that is the bending agent."

"As you said, fills in the corners."

"Makes it all sensible. Are you starting to see my system?" I was about to say yes but I stopped.

"Here, let me give you a bird's eye view before the sun sets." He sketched as he spoke.  


"See, you have zeitqualia at the top. It's the synthesis of both systems and represents the mastery of the perceiver (subject) over the empirical world (object). On one side you have linear logic and on the other you have inflected logic. Linear rationale comes from proper syntax while inflected logic comes from experience, namely the exploit. One is static in nature and the other is dynamic in nature."

I sat in amazement, looking at this structure, shocked at its sweeping distinctions and clean divisions.

"Yes, now I can see your system."

"See zeitqualia at the top is what we all gun for. Even Kant mentions it but not in name. He writes of the ‘quality of sensation, as for instance in colors, taste, etc. is always merely empirical, and cannot be represented a priori. Empirical consciousness can in inner sense be raised from 0 to any higher degree, so that a certain extensive magnitude of intuition, as for instance of illuminated surface, may become excited as great a sensation as the combined aggregate of many such surfaces less illuminated.' He's tough to read but this is Kant talking about the degree of qualia in experience. This ‘quality of sensation' is my ‘qualia' in a priori time and space. It is a sensation of magnitude experienced through in time."

I was quiet for a while as darkness overran light.

"So what does all this mean? It means that if the fundamental logic of inflection, found in languages, is a mirror of man's a priori logical apparatus, then we could use that skeletal structure to create a better logical system to analyze the natural world. Also, if we could ever apprehend and decipher and duplicate, then we would have a blueprint of our fundamental cognitive structure."

"It also explains why Symbolic Logic falls short."

"Yes. It would show the form of logic we use in our daily lives. Mountain bike logic takes into consideration the quantum phenomena not considered by traditional linear logic, like undergraduate Symbolic Logic. The random oddities of an exploit cannot fall outside of the domain of inflected logic. The dynamic of inflection allows the ride to become a flow."

"Sorry, what does it all mean again?" Irony.

"It means, my twin brother, that a mountain biker who sacrifices quality at the cost of time has a lower degree of inner magnitude." The delivery was deadpan.

"It means to have poor inflection is to have a "blind spot" or is to be "missing the middle part." It means that having excellent inflection increase the magnitude of quality. It means, my brother, that ones rationale isn't purely logical or purely poetic; rather our rational foundation has the pillar of logic and the pillar of poetry that are balanced using inflection. It means, von Schöngait, that one shoe is straight and one shoe is curved."

Doppel had connected the two poles of logic in our discussion, and had discovered that one of the biggies in Western philosophy had pinpointed that aspect within us that could apprehend the now and was the cause of understanding the importance of time in the Socratic project: the art of living.

A wolf cried in the timbers.     



Note about the text 

Traditional systems of logic, such as binary and symbolic logic, fall short of matching the curved and imperfect reality most exemplified by how motorcyclists and mountain bikers co-ordinate and interpret stimuli when they ride. This is because there is a need to make leaps of faith between the cracks of a manmade logical system, or to fill in the gaps. A perfectly symmetrical logical system falls short of the reality riders face. Therefore Doppel suggests that the best system of logic is the logic inherent in language. That is, if we could extrapolate the logical structure in any language it would be a better match for the motorcyclist. This is because the inflections and bending of grammer are a product of man and thus are a truer reflection of how our innate logical thinking operates.

This is one of the two central themes in Throttling Time. The other is the life philosophy of zeitqualia. In the passage here, zeitqualia is touched upon, but the reader would need to have read the previous chapters to fully grasp the concept of zeitqualia.  






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