From 30.9.13, Uyurkulak Initially laboring in huge numbers not to produce goods, to cultivate the land, or to do exchange… They work to produce the very communal feeling; the symbol, myth, around which collectivity is imagined and structured in the first place. Maybe agriculture and settlement followed the mythic gathering and organization around a story, a representation…
II: The Forest Journey “I have not established my name stamped on bricks as my destiny decreed; therefore I will go to the country where the cedar is felled. I will set up my name in the place where the names of famous men are written, and where no man’s name is written yet I will raise a monument to the gods” (70-71). “if I fall I leave behind me a name that endures; men will say of me, ‘Gilgamesh has fallen in fight with ferocious Humbaba.’ Long after the child has been born in my house, they will say it, and remember’.” (71).
“I will proclaim to the world the deeds of Gilgamesh. [...], he brought us a tale of the days before the flood. He went on a long journey, was weary, worn-out with labour, returning he rested, he engraved on a stone the whole story” (61). “In Uruk he built walls, a great rampart, and the temple of blessed Eanna for the god of the firmament Anu, and for Ishtar the goddess of love. Look at it still today: the outer wall where the cornice runs, it shines with the brilliance of copper; and the inner wall, it has no equal. Touch the threshold, it is ancient. Approach Eanna the dwelling of Ishtar, our lady of love and war, the like of which no latter-day king, no man alive can equal. Climb upon the wall of Uruk; walk along it, I say; regard the foundation terrace and examine the masonry: is it not burnt brick and good?” (61).
The Sumerian city: a representation of totality Inside the walls: life, agriculture, labor, authority > order > civilization Outside the walls? Outside the circle: ??? From Mitchell 9.25.13
Transience Chaos Death Formlessness Fluidity Absence the Unknown Aging, Illness, Deformation, Disintegration Clay, Dust Permanence Order Everlasting Life Form Solidity/Stability Presence Known Youth, Strength, Beauty, Growth Sculpture, Architectural space, Tablets
III. The Death of Enkidu “They who had stood in the place of the gods like Anu and Enlil, stood now like servants to fetch baked meats in the house of dust, […] Belit-Sheri […] who is recorder of the gods and keeps the book of death. She held a tablet from which she read” (92).
“What is this sleep which holds you now? You are lost in the dark and cannot hear me” (95). IV: The Search for Everlasting Life “I looked at the face of the world and there was silence, all mankind was turned to clay” (111)
Edgar Allan Poe, “The Raven” Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary, Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore, While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping, As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. `'Tis some visitor,' I muttered, `tapping at my chamber door - Only this, and nothing more.' Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December, And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor. Eagerly I wished the morrow; - vainly I had sought to borrow From my books surcease of sorrow - sorrow for the lost Lenore - For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore - Nameless here for evermore. And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple curtain Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before; So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating `'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door - Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door; - This it is, and nothing more,'
Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer, `Sir,' said I, `or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore; But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping, And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door, That I scarce was sure I heard you' - here I opened wide the door; - Darkness there, and nothing more. Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before; But the silence was unbroken, and the darkness gave no token, And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, `Lenore!' This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, `Lenore!' Merely this and nothing more.
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling, By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore, `Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,' I said, `art sure no craven. Ghastly grim and ancient raven wandering from the nightly shore - Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore!' Quoth the raven, `Nevermore.' Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly, Though its answer little meaning - little relevancy bore; For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door - Bird or beast above the sculptured bust above his chamber door, With such name as `Nevermore.' But the raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only, That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour. Nothing further then he uttered - not a feather then he fluttered - Till I scarcely more than muttered `Other friends have flown before - On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before.' Then the bird said, `Nevermore.'
Mircea Eliade, The Myth of the Eternal Return “Their [settlers, colonists] enterprise was for them only the repetition of a primordial act: the transformation of chaos into cosmos by the divine act of Creation. By cultivating the desert soil, they in fact repeated the act of the gods, who organized chaos by giving it forms and norms” (11).