The Law of Noncontradiction

The Law of Noncontradiction is the second single from the forthcoming album ‘Heraclitus Flow’ by Thomas Riffmatch, produced by Andrey Bokovikov and featuring the electronic compositions of Nikita Nikitin. The Law of Noncontradiction also features backing vocals by Primavera.

The idea behind the song is that the logical law of noncontradiction is primarily experienced by us in terms of relationship. The position “If I’m right, then you’re wrong” is something familiar to all of us who have engaged with each other on social media or in the context of familial or intimate relating. This “excluding the middle” is what gives us a sense of our own essential “rightness” and feeling that we proceed from a “moral conviction”. However, it’s obvious that nobody has a monopoly on “rightness”! As my dear mother likes to jest: “When they said I had finally met Mr Right, I had no idea his first name was ‘Always’!”

This theme is central to the concept behind ‘Heraclitus Flow’: no man steps into the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and it’s not the same man!

Cover design by Katya Fomina
Although people say I’m a bit of a one, to tango or foxtrot takes two;
Still, having the same sense at the same time, both of us cannot be true;
For a state to willingly give up its sovereignty, that would be gross dereliction:
On behalf of the crown, I therefore lay down the law of noncontradiction.

For every system that’s sufficiently expressive, there’s a provable – or not – proposition;
If I’m right, then you’re wrong – that’s the dialectic that structures our personal mission;
But all analytic statements are somewhat tautologous: is it a fact or a fiction?
I don’t care what you say if you don’t disobey my law of noncontradiction.

In violating each other’s identities thus, we find ourselves in a situation;
We run to extremes, excluding the middle, to obviate equivocation;
We aim to be justified, strive to always proceed from a moral conviction;
Though blissful, such ignorance is no defence against the law of noncontradiction.

If 'fire' and 'not fire' are thought to be equal, the thinker’s subjected to burning;
Since feasting and fasting are one and the same, the student through hunger is learning;
We’re all of a surety lacking security, all of us facing eviction;
But, on my high horse, I still have to enforce the law of noncontradiction.

Like the self-amputation of a broad-snouted caiman undergoing a caudal autotomy,
Or the diachronic change in a epileptic’s brain following a frontal lobotomy;
Dividing into two antagonistic parts results in a vasoconstriction:
Permission dispensed to go up against the law of noncontradiction.

We are and are not what is now or to come, in a constant and fixed state of flux;
Though the road up and down are one and the same, both entail the giving of fucks;
Our action consists in the mills and the grists to work up the requisite friction
To find an explanation for each and every violation of the law of noncontradiction.

The one that is and ever must be is a truth that is always immutable;
The other that’s not – and must always not be – is a path that is wholly inscrutable;
For you cannot know what is not, or is so, to refute my despondent prediction:
All that’s desired must be paid for as required by the law of noncontradiction.

Respect things that are in the sense that they are, preserving the ship and the treasure;
Show all proper deference when making reference to that of which man is the measure;
Take on this handyman to feed the biters, all due to his excellent diction:
The collection of rent is ninety percent of the law of noncontradiction.

It’s both mutually exclusive and jointly exhaustive, now that I’m giving the flag salute;
But everything must be absolutely relativised in order to relate to the absolute;
Elenctic negation results in stagnation, all due to a chronic addiction
To think yourself better than the spirit or letter of the law of noncontradiction.

Restricting reaction in the same part or relation, a utopian state is thus frozen; 
At the same time, on the contrary, somehow, must always an action be chosen;
To be fixed like a hero on the frieze of the Parthenon’s to suffer a grievous affliction:
Till the day that I die, I’ll never comply with the law of noncontradiction.

©Lyrics written and performed by Thomas Riffmatch to a backing track composed by Nikita Nikitin with backing vocals by Primavera, recorded and produced in Ekaterinburg by Andrey Bokovikov.

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