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On talking heads
> ... of this human body which is only determined by itself, out of itself, yet in which there is no arbitrariness of play, only meaning, only essence.
What is the language of a head? Beyond that of facial expressions; that is, conveyed by head itself. We nod, for instance, as a gesture of submission; a little bow—whether to a form imposed by the other (as affirming an order) or some broader structure, social status, etc.. Do you nod to the homeless as you walk by? Perhaps you might if they asked for money, then offered up; otherwise shake your head—or ignore them, quick walk away.
If asked something, if a thing is proposed, then we might tilt our head back; thus we look towards the sky in considering a thing—and here note:
late Middle English: from Old French considerer, from Latin considerare ‘examine,’ perhaps based on sidus, sider- ‘star.’
Thus we look up, consider the state of the sky; as the shepherd might check the weather or, more so, as astronomers minister to sidereal time. We consider a thing by turning to the sky, to the climate and stars, that is, to consider the qualitative nature of time and timing—wherein we might read whether we ought to do so or otherwise. The king comes to an astrologer, asks whether the time is right for war, whether the stars bode well; or otherwise, when they might. The astrologer considers, responds; so also we look up in consideration. Yet the constellations we consider are within rather than those hung upon the starry sky. When we look up in such abstract consideration we do not see the sky, yet what we do is much the same; as we consider an imagined reality and, for instance, see whether some proposal is coherent with the likelihood of a thing, our interests, etc. This is further so for a decision is unified in action but, in our consideration, as that of the astrologer, a constellation is composed of various aspects; either in terms of the nodes that constitute it or its placement in relation to the whole. The same is so for us.
We look up because that is where time is, and it is time, of course, that determines the proper timing; that is, what ought be done. The position of the sun, what time it is, or the nature of the sky more broadly. “Red sky at night, shepherds delight; red sky in morning, shepherds take warning.” We may read omens in the movements of birds or, simpler yet, see clouds on the horizon or some such sign of the coming weather. Of course, today we do not so much consider the sky as check the time by a watch or timing by way of a weather service; it is thus instead we do now consider but instead tilt down our heads. Indeed, in this we almost seem to bow to the technical objects which procure for us this information—hence we lower ourselves before the power of man and thereby calculate rather than consider.
And what of a nod, then, what reason is there in this? Thus we lower ourselves, as perhaps upon entering an enclosed space. We act out our entry into an agreement; or our further submission, as a respectful nod might move slower and lower. Thus a deeper bow places us below another, we hold ourselves there. Thus we render ourselves small and vulnerable; it is a gesture of trust and submission. See the man to be decapitated is lowered also and alike with neck exposed. Hence why prayer requires we assume a proper pose, as we thus enact our relation with the deity by this fundamental gesture. Prayer in this embodied sense is a basic word, not so much something said as a place spoken from; to do otherwise is as to say no when nodding.
We will show them Our signs in the horizons and within themselves until it becomes clear to them that it is the truth. Is it not enough that your Lord is a Witness over all things? Lo, they are in doubt about the meeting with their Lord. Surely, He encompasses all things.