Nis's Blog

Living Reference / Term



A term where every usage is itself bearing an instance of the word's meaning because it's referent is something you care about on an always-ongoing basis. All living terms are ultimately some take on, or closely related to 'I'.

Similar to the way transhumanists refer to "AGI complete" problems that can only be solved by a general intelligence, but at the level of semantics, and without the outside view that term invokes (I'd instead say "choice complete", maybe1. choice complete). There's a sense in which no grammatical structure can nontrivially modify the meaning of a living term e.g. a living term cannot be truly negated (in the sense of 'anti-').


  • Good (in the sense of as opposed to evil)
    • There is no true negation of the word good, as e.g. every evil is different, and all evil is broken.
    • Living terms can neither be wholly positive or negative concepts. e.g. Good people actively care about other people, and are not evil. People are mutually exclusively good or evil (or e.g. in the case of children living / unknown): "Equivalently, in choices made long ago, cares about good at all" - Ziz (but note that humans have two hemispheres, and so single goods are a seeming (but not actual) "exception").
  • I
  • Justice
  • Words that you should never cede to someone else's definition
    • Everything / Reality / Prime
    • Life / Living / Healing / Growth
      • TODO: Quote Ziz's multiverse post here.
    • Choice
      • See 'fictive'
      • Want / Like
        • "Diswant" is modifying what you want to do about the thing, not "antiwanting it" (vs I once considered using the word "antiwant" to describe the inside-out nature of death knights)
        • Good / Bad / Right / Wrong
          • Used grammatically to describe what you want
    • People
      • Animals are people
    • Truth

Broken Placeholder Term

A living term viewed from the outside, causing the "carried forward through every reference in an unbroken chain" aspect to be especially noticeable because you're constantly maybe on the verge of figuratively "dropping the ball" insomuch as you're using the term, as long as you're confused about why you're using the term.

If you would ever become [a death knight], even choosing to die downstream of the proof that [a death knight] became what they are *for no reason*, then you could have chosen for them not to but didn't.

In some sense you can never know whether you would become [a death knight], because "knowing" it is mutually exclusive with choosing it. Taking in any information about what your choice is is making it not your choice.


Choice and self-fulfilling prophecy are weirdly dual.

Like self-fulfilling prophecy is choice from the outside.

Ziz, in a private channel

Related concepts: Outside View, Frame of Puppets, False Faces, Saidar (TODO: link).

TODO: Uncategorized primordial terms:

  • experience
  • time
  • how would I relate this to "fate minimization"? (for which I'm also reconsidering the name itself)
  • I have two of the "Buddhist" "3 marks of existence" on this page ("suffering" and self), what about "impermanence"?

Dying Term

A dying term's meaning slips away even as you use it. All dying terms are ultimately some take on 'evil'.


  • Evil
    • See cancer terms
    • Every evil is different, but I am going to kill them all
  • Lies, as they die even in their capacity to have ever had meaning in the first place, with the death of their target, or speaker

  1. "Intelligence" (choice regarding discernment), "optimization" (literally from "optimist"), and "agency" ("one who acts") all evoke something ultimately less than me.