The Legend of Rationality
the next visitor to the tower was the legend of rationality. she had a question regarding the true nature of rationality: since the rationality of any situation is perceived in regard to the elements that comprise the situation, is there really a dividing line between what is "rational" and what is "non-rational."
the legend of rationality was able to communicate with all animals, and in searching for her answer, a few animals had advised her that some wise and beautiful cats lived in a creaky old tower and that they might be able to answer her question. she made herself into thought waves and momentarily made her way to the tower.
she and the woman in the tower had known each other for many years, and the legend entered the padlocked chamber. "still here after all this time, i see," the legend said as a greeting. none of these legends or the woman in the chamber were, obviously, ones to mince words. "yes, still here," the woman answered. both had gone way beyond the normal expectations of patience, and there was much they didn't bother to mention. they held a fondness for each other and shared a great sense of mutual support.
"i've come to ask a question of your cats," the legend of rationality spoke. "they aren't really my cats, the woman answered, they live in the tower, the universe put them here to help clean things up. yes, go ahead and chat with them all you like, they will enjoy the company."
so the legend of rationality went and chatted with the cats for hours. they had all sorts of things to talk about. they finally got down to the legend's question about the nature of rationality and was there really such a thing as a divider between rationality and non-rationality.
"see all these creatures flapping around here?" the cats asked.
"yes, i was noticing them," the legend replied. "i see a lot of cobwebs also." the legend of rationality was trying to be polite and not bring attention to odd unexpected creatures and lots of cobwebs. she did notice that the grey ghostly strawmen creatures were very unappealing in the way they floated around in bunches and bumped into things, but she often kept her personal opinions to herself.
"each of those creatures," the cats explained, "was created from someone's ideas that were a fallacy, but which they believed were real. these are only the ones that came from adventurers trying to climb this spiral staircase with songs. there are many many times more strawman creatures floating around in the regular world of people. the old rule used to be that the higher the population density, the more strawman creatures would be floating around. in regular cities these strawmen are invisible, but here in the tower they look like this." one of the creatures flapped by and bumped into the wall before following the contours of the building. "now, with radio, television, and the internet, the volume of strawman creatures has gotten way out of hand, but since they are invisible most people deny the existence of a problem. here in the tower the spiders had been controlling the strawman creatures at first but when the numbers became too much the universe sent us here to help out."
"what is your point in telling me this?" the legend asked.
"you are looking for the dividing line where what is rational would become considered non-rational," the cats explained. "every single person who has created these strawmen creatures believes they are rational. the strawmen creatures help them to believe in what they believe, and yet every one of these creatures is based on a fallacy. none of the people realize how thick the layer of strawmen creatures has gotten to be, since the creatures are invisible in the world. what part of that ongoing scenario could possibly be considered rational? .....yet most people see themselves as rational. if i were you, i would stop worrying about answering your question and just do what you feel like doing."
the legend of rationality felt that she needed some time to consider the significance of all the strawmen creatures. she thanked the cats for their time and promised to come back for another chat sometime in the future. the cats waved goodbye with their paws and tails and sent out loud purring sounds as her thought waves left the tower.
to be continued.......
©anita klinger 2006