Shadow of the Groundhog # 6: Kubrick Labyrinth (When Is a Detour Not a Detour?)


Answer: when you get lost in it.

In lieu of an update, here’s a taste of what’s been going on today with the shadow-seeking groundhog, via a Google chat with sweatyk:

me:  just had a tweet convo with Kubrick’s daughter
 Keith:  Is she still a Scientologist?
 Sent at 5:46 PM on Sunday
 me:  ohho
i dont know
I will sic M* on it
 Keith:  Read the exchange.  She sounds buttoned up
 me:  tight
does this mean I am getting close to the secret?
 Keith:  It would seem.  Send me your piece
  me:  is that an order?
 Keith:  What’s the password?
 me:  overrated
 Keith:  Haha
 Keith:  He’s an asshole
 me:  SK?
 Keith:  Yes
 me:  i have more sympathy for him now i have glimpsed the secret
 Keith:  That he’s self obsessed and ocd?
 me:  SK = JT
 Keith:  Right
me:  it is more than one sort of confession
 Keith:  Moon landing?
 me:  besides that
 Keith:  He hates his audience
 me:  woody allen syndrome
 Keith:  None more than those that claim to understand him and his work
 me:  the truly fooled
or hood-winked
here’s a riddle and if you get close to the answer i will send the piece: if Kubrick is a sorcery, what’s the end of his sorcery?
 Keith:  Nihilism?
 me:  take your time (like a couple of days at least)
not a one word answer
 Keith:  Oh
 me:  and not just one answer either so you have a better chance of hitting the bard
or bard
clue: think about what sorcery means
 Keith:  By the end you mean his intention
 me:  yes, and the achieved result
he was a master
 Keith:  Grand master
 me:  yeah yeah
Click on the first link about the shining
Shot by shot analysis with time codes and everything
And camera angles of degree.  Holy shit
 me:  ok but the answer isn’t found in any esoteric fancy schmancy synchromystic BS
 Keith:  I just wanted to show you that
 me:  that’s all just stanley;s red herrings
the 2nd matrix if you will
 Keith:  Of course
 me:  it’s enough to know the first matrix kubrick built
the existence of th 2nd kubbrick matrix itself is a clue, but there are no clues IN it
only herrings
didn’t hamlet’s mill come up elsewhere?
 Keith:  Think so
 me:  donde?
was in in strieberville?
 Keith:  Maybe Phil was talking about can’t remember
 me:  nope
it was part of some metanarrative,
is it in Room 237?
 Keith:  I just watched it don’t think so
“The question about 2012 is really very simple: will the world be destroyed or not? We know that there was a period of horrendous upheaval about 11,000 years ago, and that classic books like Hamlet’s Mill have made the case that a warning of future catastrophe is contained in the symbolic writings of the past.
 me:  whitley, meet stanley
me:  the link you sent is odd, doesnt allow selecting text
must be an image
Keith:  Its some kind of flash page
 me:  it mentions a quote from hamlets Mill but i dont see any quote
 me:  did i ever tell you about the Kubrick lookalike who was my neighbor in Hampstead in 2002?
 Keith:  No
 me:  He would sit at his desk in the window of his house, writing
i saw him all the time and Mike LaBurt saw him too
we jokingly called him Kubrick because he was a dead ringer
now i wonder
  Keith:  Ha
 me:  I guess the syncbook guys know about this site
how did you find it?
 Keith:  Leclair
Chatted with him on skype
 me:  the url has word zero in it twice; zer0 books my new pub.
how was the chat? did mark let you get a word in?
 Keith:  I didn’t expect to after listening to him.  I tried my best
 me:  what is telling about this site and all the other theories about SK – you know what it is?
one word answer
 Keith:  The assumption that everything he did was by design.  There are no mistakes
 me:  have you actually read all this?!
that’s lots of words
 Keith:  Fuck no
 me:  condense into one?
begins with 0
me:  (clue no 2: you may not see it coz you have it)
come on slopokes
one scroll of the shining page  and it screams in your face
Keith:  im not following you
 me:  never mind
i am going to post our chat in lieu of today;s post
are you OK with that?
i will let my readers solve the 2nd riddle, and give them a shot at the first too
if you dont beat them to it
  Keith:  I did actually read most of that page after scrolling through it
 me:  😮
you should get an award
 Keith:  but other than that its fine
 me:  that only proves my 2nd clue
you have what it is I am drawing your attention to
so you dont see it
(tho i am sure you really)
 Keith:  ? the last line?
Keith:  ? the last line?
 me:  say what?
 Keith:  “(tho i am sure you really)”
 me:  do
 Keith:  seems to be missing a word
 me:  know
see it
 Keith:  ah
 me:  anyway, riddle 2 is a lesser version of riddle 1
if you like Kubrick you like riddles
so i dont feel bad about feeding your….
Keith:  addiction

 me:  close
but no cigar!
 Keith:  obsession
 me:  bingo
it doesnt matter whether any of the clues these people find mean anything
what matters is that they looked
going to post this now and rewatch Room 237
coz I have fallen into Stanley’s trap

14 thoughts on “Shadow of the Groundhog # 6: Kubrick Labyrinth (When Is a Detour Not a Detour?)

  1. Jasun,

    I knew (felt) something was in the making, so I checked your blog after months of absence.

    I am deep into Heidegger. Keith’s first link made me realize something important about Heidegger. I can’t put it into words yet, but I have a hunch that Kubrick’s art [“Dichten”] and Heidegger’s philosophy [“Denken”] are related.

    Reading on…



    Technically Human: Kubrick’s Monolith and Heidegger’s Propriative Event

    Leonard, Garry


    Film Criticism; Fall 2011, Vol. 36 Issue 1, p. 44

    The author uses a critique of Stanley Kubrick’s film “2001: A Space Odyssey” to discuss the science fiction genre’s fascination with a technologically forward way of thinking, which develops from an attitude of discovery and desire for progress. The author uses German philosopher Martin Heidegger’s concepts of enframement and proprietary discovery to explain the ordering of time within the film and how the futuristic setting and mise en scene lends itself to understanding the human condition.

  2. going to post this now and rewatch Room 237
    coz I have fallen into Stanley’s trap


    Pauli fell ill with pancreatic cancer. When his last assistant, Charles Enz, visited him at the Rotkreuz hospital in Zurich, Pauli asked him: “Did you see the room number?” It was number 137. Throughout his life, Pauli had been preoccupied with the question of why the fine structure constant, a dimensionless fundamental constant, has a value nearly equal to 1/137. Pauli died in that room on 15 December 1958.

  3. When Is a Detour Not a Detour?

    Answer: when you get lost in it.


    Heidegger: Off the Beaten Track

    (originally published in German under the title Holzwege)

    In German, the figure of speech “auf dem Holzweg sein,” which literally means “to be on the wood path” (a “wooded path” would be a “Waldweg”), stems from the lumberjack trade.

    When lumberjacks work in the woods, they carve out a path near felled trees expressly for the transport of logs out of the forest. This is known in German as a “Holzweg.”

    This path, however, tends to end somewhere in the heart of the forest for obvious reasons. So if anyone hikes into the woods and follows such a “Holzweg,” he or she will not end up at a desired destination. Instead, this path will literally lead to a dead end. Hence the expression “auf dem Holzweg sein” literally means to be on the wrong path.

    Wood is an old name for forest. In the wood are mostly paths that wind along until they end quite suddenly in an impenetrable thicket.

    They are called ‘wood paths’ (Holzwege).

    Each goes their own particular way, but in the same forest. Often it seems as though one were identical to another. Yet it only seems so. Woodcutters and foresters are familiar with these paths. They know what it means to be on a woodpath (auf dem Holzweg sein)”.

    ~ Martin Heidegger

    In colloquial German, harkening back to Luther’s metaphorical usage of this phrase, to be “on a wood path” (auf dem Holzweg sein), refers to approaching a problem or matter of thought in a way that ensures one will never reach one’s goal.

    We nicknamed Heidegger ‘the little magician from Messkirch’ … His lecturing method consisted in constructing an edifice of ideas, which he himself then dismantled again so as to baffle fascinated listeners, only to leave them up in the air. This art of enchantment sometimes had the most disturbing effects in that it attracted more or less psychopathic personalities, and one female student committed suicide three years after such guessing games

    What has happened to those who, like Heidegger, have tried to find their ways in immediacy, in intuition, in nature, would be too sad to retell—and is well known anyway. What is certain is that those pathmarks off the beaten track led indeed nowhere.

    One can forgive many Germans, but there are some Germans it is difficult to forgive. It is difficult to forgive Heidegger.

    Martin Heidegger (1889-1976) was the most important and influential philosopher in the continental tradition in the 20th century. Being and Time, first published in 1927, was his magnum opus. There is no way of understanding what took place in continental philosophy after Heidegger without coming to terms with Being and Time. Furthermore, unlike many Anglo-American philosophers, Heidegger has exerted a huge influence outside philosophy, in areas as diverse as architecture, contemporary art, social and political theory, psychotherapy, psychiatry and theology.

  4. Heidegger’s writings are notoriously difficult, requiring careful reading.

    [Heidegger] lies notoriously always and everywhere, and whenever he can.

    If I may add: Heidegger’s specific term for man was “Da-sein” (being there). The “Da” (there) is characterized by two aspects: the “Da” (there) is always already (pre-theoretical) a mood (German: Stimmung, Befindlichkeit) and is always already (pre-theoretical) an understanding (German: Verstehen). Both intersect. Now, Da-sein (being there) *is* primordial time (German: die ursprüngliche Zeit), not to be confused with physical time! The mood correlates with the past (German: Gewesenheit), the understanding with the future (German: Zukunft). The primordial time structure is held together by what Heidegger called care (German: die Sorge), that what I am concerned about, which is – ultimately – understanding of Being (German: Seinsverständnis). The “Da” as mood-understanding (past-future) is also called “Wahrheit” (truth) and “Lichtung” (clearing).


    In German the word Lichtung means a clearing, as in, for example, a clearing in the woods. Since its root is the German word for light (Licht), it is sometimes also translated as “lighting,” and in Heidegger’s work it refers to the necessity of a clearing in which anything at all can appear, the clearing in which some thing or idea can show itself, or be unconcealed.

    In other words, by following a “Holzweg” (wood path), you will reach a “Lichtung” (clearing), which is you as a mood-understanding (past-future), and that mood-understanding, which is you, is the undisclosed Truth of Being (German: die Wahrheit des Seins). [Truth = a-letheia (greek) = un-disclosed (open), not to be confused with rightness (German: Richtigkeit)]

    You summed it all up:

    it doesnt matter whether any of the clues these people find mean anything
    what matters is that they looked


    What is it all about, one might ask.

    [UNORIGINAL] Answer: Thatness (German: Faktizität).


    It’s not about a result, it’s about a process of concealment and un-concealment of Thatness. Many people are brought into despair by the un-concealment of Thatness, because it smacks of nihilism. But this is a misunderstanding. Sorcery is not all bad. In Heideggerian terms what it aims at is the transformation of an animal rationale –

    Rational animal is a classical definition of humanity.

    – into a Da-sein. It is actually an attempt to unplug you form the Matrix. The Matrix is – again in Heideggerian terms – a particular kind of thinking, what he calls metaphysics of presence. We are used to thinking about everything, including ourselves, as objects – objects either to look at [German: Vorhandenes] theoretically or for practical use [German: Zuhandenes]. We self-objectify us and nature, hence we create technologies and conceive of ourselves as machines (commodities) using machines and being used by machines! That’s the Matrix. It’s also how we look or search for meaning, as an object (idea) to be grasped by the mind. All wrong. This way we are locked into “the desert of the real” (Morphius), what Heidegger called “Geschichtslosigkeit” (being without history), and this is the real nihilism – and people do not even notice it : forgettfulness of being (Heidegger: Seinsvergessenheit).

    Instead, we have to experience ourselves as Da-Sein, as “Geschichtlichkeit” (historicity), as our own time! We are not objects! Meaning is not an idea! Instead, meaning is an experience (German: Erlebnis), an experience of what? Of Being as time. (This cannot be explained!)

    “Der Weg ist das Ziel.”

    What does it mean?

    Essentially, it implies that the goal or destination is not as important as the metaphorical journey taken to get there, and that the experiences or emotions gained are the true reward.

    IN the midway of this our mortal life,
    I found me in a gloomy wood, astray
    Gone from the path direct: and e’en to tell
    It were no easy task, how savage wild
    That forest, how robust and rough its growth,
    Which to remember only, my dismay
    Renews, in bitterness not far from death.

  6. Room 237

    @ 37:12

    “White man’s burden, Llloyd, my man, white man’s burden.”


    I know that “White Man’s Burden” comes from the Rudyard Kipling poem supporting colonialism, but why does Jack say this? What is he referring to?

    Abe: crazy! I just looked at this two days ago:

    [Wilfrid Scawen] Blunt is also known for his relatively enlightened views against imperialism:

    His most memorable line of poetry on the subject most memorable line of poetry comes from Satan Absolved (1899), where the devil, answering a Kiplingesque remark by God, snaps back:

    ‘The white man’s burden, Lord, is the burden of his cash.’

    Here, Longford explains, ‘Blunt stood Rudyard Kipling’s familiar concept on its head, arguing that the imperialists’ burden is not their moral responsibility for the colonised peoples, but their urge to make money out of them.’

    Satan absolved : a Victorian mystery (1899)

    Their poets who write big of the ” White Burden.” Trash !
    The White Man’s Burden, Lord, is the burden of his cash.
    – There. Thou hast heard the truth. Thy world, Lord God
    of Heaven,
    Lieth in the hands of thieves who pillage morn and even.
    And Thou still sleepest on ! Nay but Thou needs must hear
    Or abdicate Thy name of High Justiciar
    Henceforward and for ever. It o’erwhelmeth Thee
    With more than temporal shame. Thy silence is a Sea
    Crying through all the spheres in pain and ceasing not
    As blood from out the ground to mark crime’s murder spot :
    ” There is no hope no truth. He hath betrayed the trust.
    “The Lord God is unjust. The Lord God is unjust.”

  7. Daughter of Stanley Kubrick Speaks Out

    @ 10:30

    It’s just now that technology has given them [the power elite] a kind of omnipotence that is terrifying.


    M. Heidegger:

    Agriculture is now a motorized food industry, the same thing in its essence as the production of corpses in the gas chambers and the extermination camps, the same thing as blockades and the reduction of countries to famine, the same thing as the manufacture of hydrogen bombs.

    Four Lectures on Technology (1949)

    Everywhere we remain unfree and chained to technology, whether we passionately affirm or deny it. But we are delivered over to it in the worst possible way when we regard it as something neutral; for this conception of it, to which today we particularly like to do homage, makes us utterly blind to the essence of technology.

    The Question Concerning Technology (1954)

    In its essence, technology is something that man does not control.

    Der Spiegel Interview with Martin Heidegger, 1966

  8. Russia and America, seen metaphysically, are both the same: the same hopeless frenzy of unchained technology and of the rootless organisation of the average man. When the farthest corner of the globe has been conquered technologically and can be exploited economically; when any incident you like, at any time you like, becomes accessible as fast as you like; when you can simultaneously “experience” an assassination attempt against a king in France and a symphony concert in Tokyo; when time is nothing but speed, instantaneity, and simultaneity, and time as history has vanished from all Dasein of all peoples; when a boxer counts as the great man of a people; when the tallies of millions at mass meetings are a triumph; then, yes then, there still looms like a specter over all this uproar the question: what for? – where to? – and what then?


    The spiritual decline of the earth has progressed so far that peoples are in danger of losing their last spiritual strength, the strength that makes it possible even to see the decline and to appraise it as such. This simple observation has nothing to do with cultural pessimism – nor with any optimism either, of course; for the darkening of the world, the flight of the gods, the destruction of the earth, the reduction of human beings to a mass, the hatred and mistrust of everything creative and free has already reached such proportions throughout the whole earth that such childish categories as pessimism and optimism have long become laughable.

    M. Heidegger, Introduction to Metaphysics, 1935

  9. Kubrick:

    You’re free to speculate as you wish about the philosophical and allegorical meaning.

    Plato’s Secret Doctrine & the Logic of Discovery

    @ 39

    “Plato would present a problem, puzzle, anomaly, apparent contradiction or incomplete result, intending that the attentive student would abduct an explanatory hypotheses.”

    “Abduction is the process of forming an explanatory hypothesis. It is the only logical operation which introduces new ideas.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s