What do you believe?

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Francis Buck

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« Reply #15 on: November 05, 2013, 05:45:10 pm »
I just realized that in commending Royce's English, I myself made a mistake in the first damn word of the sentence.

Callan S.

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« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2013, 01:16:04 am »
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More down to earth, I believe we are all piecemeal handing away our liberty for the convenience of buying food. And in regard to that the more you grow your own food, if only a few herbs, the more bargaining power you reclaim for yourself and others.

+1. Urban farming, IMO, might offer a chance to emancipate people from the system more than any anarchist revolution.
Aww no, urban farming is totally anachist, wild man renegade breaking all the rules!

Oh, okay, it's not! It's more Ghandi than Chuck Norris! But I'm inclined to perpetuate the feeling that it is bad ass - call me a bad person for doing so! heh! Breakin' all da rules...

Danke for the +1! :)

jamesA01

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« Reply #17 on: November 06, 2013, 06:26:26 pm »
I'd prefer an urban soylent lab - 3d molecule printing ingredients and growing some in bacteria vats, if thats possible.


Madness

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« Reply #18 on: November 06, 2013, 07:13:42 pm »
Well, I might have to clarify what I am trying to say :) Collectivism does not exist. Only individual choices do, and individuals can be manipulated into believing that "collectively" this or that is good or bad and what not. I think the size of tribes around the world is insane. A tribe with 300 million people, collectively agreeing what is good or bad through the highly symbolic action of voting? It sounds like a tragic comedy, but it is actually happening.

I think we contribute to collective embodiment much more obviously with our 'purchasing power', but yes, voting is one of the few remaining ways to exercise individual agency in the Western Empire.

I think a more healthy focus on yourself, through whatever means you feel works, to get rid of stress, uncertainty, and fear, would help many people make better choices for themselves. Meditation works for me, it has helped me not to take life so seriously. There is absolutely no way you can be in control of anything, the "now" is impossible to predict, so stop trying. Same with the "future", it does not exist. Anything can happen at any moment, so just relax and try to enjoy this fascinating journey :)

Hm... you must have read enough of my words to know I disagree, Royce. Certainly, focusing on one's self is paramount to 'healthy living' - I'm an avid, if sporadic, meditator. However, we aren't alone in the world. Our way of life, where some of us can enjoy the luxury of 'focusing on yourself,' is a minority experience. If I manage escape the poverty and impoverished agency of my youth, it'll have been through a dose of luck, certainly, but also major perseverance. Many others aren't so lucky and experience more obstacles in social mobility. I can't abide while a privileged and fearful minority manipulate the populace while destroying the world to better preserve themselves - especially, with the common experience of reality being transient as you highlight.

I'm reminded of Bill Hick's closing "it's just a ride," except I don't agree with refusing to play for good as a result of that cognitive mindset.

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Religions generally seek to pad a bleak existence that seems to feel otherwise unbearable?

This is correct. Although it is a complex issue. I do not know about you but I am happy with my life at the moment, I do not need to be convinced there is a happy and never ending life which awaits me when I rot in the ground. Plenty of people actively seek this assurance for reasons I can totally understand. A mortal life which is pure horror every day is probably hard to live with. If this religious deception helps them, I do not feel I can judge them. Is it my right to take that little hope away from them? This issue will never cease to exist either, since there will always be people in need, especially the way the world works today.

My argument is against inaction, when we might better the lives of us all, especially those in most need - religion has historically served as motivator of very morally bankrupt intentions despite the solace you describe.

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I can't support any mindset that suggests nothing good is possible in the world without intervention - Alien, Metaphysical, or Divine

No, but I do enjoy a healthy dose of metaphysical speculation now and again, although my feet are planted on the ground :) It is kind of funny when you see this distinction that has arisen lately between religion and spirituality. People say things like "I am not religious, but I am very spiritual". That is basically the same thing. The "spiritual" person only takes the positives from religion (chanting,community,mystical experiences and so on), and just leave out the negative ones (male dominant,rigid,literally believing in the word of god,exploitation,wealth obsession and so on). All these negative aspects are not really religion either, it is politics, geopolitics, and many egoes flexing their muscles. We call this organized religion I guess, and when religion gets organized in this way it ceases to be a religion and becomes a political party. I am not religious, I am just rambeling :)

Gladly FB mentioned Alan Watts earlier, and I also have him as one of my favorites. I have to admit to a certain liking of taoism because of him. To me it is the only ism that makes sense so far. Although I do not quite grasp it , the simplicity attracts me.

I wish I could dig deeper in this discussion with you guys, but my skills in English restrict me. Hope I make some sense though :)

You are doing amazing, Royce. Perhaps, we should all bend ourselves to learning Norwegian to better facilitate your thoughts.

My gripe arises from the idea that it seems impossible to attribute the better aspects of humanity to human agency itself. Whenever a person does, says, or writes something profound, we're so quick to attribute it to intervention - which is supreme BS, in my opinion. We should celebrate human accomplishment as human accomplishment before positing ridiculous fantasies because 'humans are inherently evil' or some such.

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I think too many answers are locked into some of the better short-story ideas of mine

I would love to read some of those sometime :) I am hoping I can shear some of mine in the future too, if I can get someone to translate them for me :) Lots of great stuff on this forum too ;)

Sometime, Royce. We should absolutely work to translate your stories... facilitating language is extremely healthy for a community. I wonder what would happen with a "Translation Subforum."

ETA: I also wanted to mention that I should clarify my earlier point about the whole "follow your dream" thing. Obviously people need to live, and feed themselves, and so on. I mean my dream is to be a writer and filmmaker, but I still work regular jobs. The greater point is to never give up on the dream, and especially don't treat it as something that one shouldn't do because it's not what you're "supposed to do". There's a strong social pressure in the west (and I presume many other cultures worldwide) that if you don't follow this specific sort of lifestyle, then you're somehow not doing it right (it being life), or that you're lazy, or naive, or whatever incarnation the criticism takes, and that's what I think people need to consider.

How do you deal with being ostracized for 'having a dream?'

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More down to earth, I believe we are all piecemeal handing away our liberty for the convenience of buying food. And in regard to that the more you grow your own food, if only a few herbs, the more bargaining power you reclaim for yourself and others.

+1. Urban farming, IMO, might offer a chance to emancipate people from the system more than any anarchist revolution.

I can see this quickly becoming another thread but... this is a major crux of the global economic system.

The two things I DO believe in is love and family.  IMO, those are the keys to a happy and successful life, despite whatever your culture tries to force feed you.

To be honest I am genuinely surprised that this "belief system" hasn't sent me in a downward spiral into deep depression. I like to think it is because I try to only focus on what I can control and deem important; I love unconditionally until someone proves to me I shouldn't and there is nothing that I wouldn't do for my family. 

If I only measure myself with those two things, I can convince myself that I am happy and successful.

Edit: I meant to say Royce, English is my first language and I feel you have a better handle on how to use it than I do.

Humanity can cultivate a perspective of a global-human family.

Which "belief system" do you mean, your own? Or the versions force-fed in dissemination?
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Callan S.

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« Reply #19 on: November 06, 2013, 08:00:59 pm »
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But I think the question is something of a trap, Royce

Well, I might have to clarify what I am trying to say :) Collectivism does not exist. Only individual choices do, and individuals can be manipulated into believing that "collectively" this or that is good or bad and what not. I think the size of tribes around the world is insane. A tribe with 300 million people, collectively agreeing what is good or bad through the highly symbolic action of voting? It sounds like a tragic comedy, but it is actually happening.
I could get an arguement that they might all think that they could never vote for something which then turns out to be bad.

But other than that, what do you mean?

Callan S.

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« Reply #20 on: November 06, 2013, 08:02:48 pm »
I'd prefer an urban soylent lab - 3d molecule printing ingredients and growing some in bacteria vats, if thats possible.
That sounds like it's dependent on outside corporations to work, or if a device it uses breaks, it's again dependent on outside corporations to work. Thus eliminating the whole bargaining power element entirely.

Am I wrong?

jamesA01

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« Reply #21 on: November 06, 2013, 08:06:28 pm »
Yep. The soylent recipe is online, and all the ingredients are easy to buy in bulk. Corporations sell them cheap, thank you corporations, I love you and your inhuman use of instrumental reason more than any agrarian hippie!

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« Reply #22 on: November 07, 2013, 01:19:23 am »
Is the ink still drying on the contract that both ensures that price remains the same as well as ensuring the income from another corporation is basically on tenure, James?

You seem really sure.

Francis Buck

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« Reply #23 on: November 07, 2013, 02:59:58 am »
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How do you deal with being ostracized for 'having a dream?'

Well, I don't think it's ostracization for having a dream so much as following that dream with determination. For me it's less people outright telling me my dream is stupid or something like that, and more just a general social atmosphere of our youth being led to believe that "it's great to have a dream, but you have to be realistic". Which, as I said, basically boils down to, "it's great to have a dream, but you also have to be a worker bee". Honestly I think it's something that might transcend culture, because it actually makes sense, from a practical standpoint, for people to think that way. If everyone followed their dreams of being artists and athletes or whatever, then not much would get done (which is why I similarly believe the average person is naturally predisposed toward "sleep walking" through life, avoiding difficult questions about existence and reality, since they're not exactly useful things to devote your time to -- again, from a remote, evolutionary standpoint).

But, in the few cases where I recall people actually straight up ostracizing me for wanting to be a writer and pursuing it adamantly (or otherwise implied such a concept), I either ignored it, or proved myself -- the latter being more difficult, given the nature of writing and reading (it's not like if I wanted to be a singer and I could just bust out singing, writing doesn't really work that way obviously). But, I know there were people among my friends (and to a lesser extent family) who knew I wanted to be a writer but never really took the notion seriously until they actually read something I wrote.

I think I've actually faced a lot more ostracization (though I use that term lightly) for being into philosophy and the nature of reality and all that, and wanting to discuss it with people. So many times I've come up against the mindset of, "Why think about this stuff when none of it matters?" -- which, as far as I'm concerned, is absurd. It only doesn't affect because you haven't engaged it. Again though, I think this ties into people being naturally inclined not to engage with these concepts, often because they lead to scary and uncomfortable areas that make you question the entire foundation of your reality. And, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), most people simply don't want to do that.

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« Reply #24 on: November 07, 2013, 02:57:34 pm »
I'm of a subtly different mind, I think - but I felt that was the best question to ask to sound the perspective.

Which, as I said, basically boils down to, "it's great to have a dream, but you also have to be a worker bee". Honestly I think it's something that might transcend culture, because it actually makes sense, from a practical standpoint, for people to think that way. If everyone followed their dreams of being artists and athletes or whatever, then not much would get done (which is why I similarly believe the average person is naturally predisposed toward "sleep walking" through life, avoiding difficult questions about existence and reality, since they're not exactly useful things to devote your time to -- again, from a remote, evolutionary standpoint).

Just riffing but I think it's a pretty pressing historical discussion actually. I mean, leveraging agriculture, in a way, led to all of what our civilization calls achievement. It took a leisure class to make advancements. Else all is war and food. And even with individuals freed up to bend themselves towards reality, we still fought about food (land) and the ability to leverage a leisure class.

Class dissociation, as far as we have prevalent historical evidence, is insanity.

We should partake in all aspects, I'd think. We can't afford class specialization as a species.

As to the "sleep walking," I'd hazard that our social and cultural embodiments do far more than evolution to bury a child's possible 'unfolding.' And that is probably my "if the worst were to happen" social scenario: if those who profit from human ignorance were to protect their intellectual holdings (better diet, education, money-greased through the social gears) they might affect both the dumbing down of the plebletariot while continuing to secure their own increasing knowledge. Should that knowledge gap ever become too great, between what the common majority hold as true and actionable knowledge and what the intellectual elite know to be the leading edge of human understanding, my descendants at least, should I have children, will likely be enslaved for a time, that puts the fearful minority in a dangerously secure position (this is excluding, say, a worse monetary division determining availability of neuroaugmentation... and it spirals out from there)

I'll gladly spend my life trying to affect differently. Shouldn't everyone get a chance to push the bar up and contribute to our human achievement board?

But, in the few cases where I recall people actually straight up ostracizing me for wanting to be a writer and pursuing it adamantly (or otherwise implied such a concept), I either ignored it, or proved myself -- the latter being more difficult, given the nature of writing and reading (it's not like if I wanted to be a singer and I could just bust out singing, writing doesn't really work that way obviously). But, I know there were people among my friends (and to a lesser extent family) who knew I wanted to be a writer but never really took the notion seriously until they actually read something I wrote.

I think I've actually faced a lot more ostracization (though I use that term lightly) for being into philosophy and the nature of reality and all that, and wanting to discuss it with people. So many times I've come up against the mindset of, "Why think about this stuff when none of it matters?" -- which, as far as I'm concerned, is absurd. It only doesn't affect because you haven't engaged it. Again though, I think this ties into people being naturally inclined not to engage with these concepts, often because they lead to scary and uncomfortable areas that make you question the entire foundation of your reality. And, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), most people simply don't want to do that.

I think you've nicely captured my question in these two paragraphs. Basically, I've never been able to turn off that second paragraph mindset, you described, which then motivated my going against most, and any, social grains. However, I meet very few people who can actually tolerate me (I picture myself as Ciphrang now, an odd, indescribable ebb and warp that people retreat from quickly). Lol - I'm seriously lucky I have friends from growing up.

But that doesn't stop me from theorizing dynamic models of engagement with the collective as individuals. Changing curriculum at the moment is best. More purposely subversive entertainment (a la Bakker). Greater dissemination of practical and sustainable knowledge (permaculture, as is being highlighted in the thread), anything that leverages our time from monetary obligations, if we so choose.

Anyhow, just freestyling as always. I've been practicing stream-of-consciousness writing for so long, I think it has had a permanent affect on me.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2013, 02:59:49 pm by Madness »
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Royce

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« Reply #25 on: November 07, 2013, 06:58:06 pm »
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Hm... you must have read enough of my words to know I disagree, Royce. Certainly, focusing on one's self is paramount to 'healthy living' - I'm an avid, if sporadic, meditator. However, we aren't alone in the world. Our way of life, where some of us can enjoy the luxury of 'focusing on yourself,' is a minority experience. If I manage escape the poverty and impoverished agency of my youth, it'll have been through a dose of luck, certainly, but also major perseverance. Many others aren't so lucky and experience more obstacles in social mobility. I can't abide while a privileged and fearful minority manipulate the populace while destroying the world to better preserve themselves - especially, with the common experience of reality being transient as you highlight.

It was not my intention to give the impression that meditation could save a poor guy from starving. That is of course insane :). I am talking about people who are completely "trapped" in the game. Always wanting more and more, thinking they someday end up happy. It is possible to be happy without donating your existence to the machine. I think that if more and more people focused less on commodity and more on what you really want in life, the machine will eventually start to move slower. With so many brains involved, it seems unlikely that we can agree on a certain path, and that is why I am not so very positive when it comes to the future of the western empire. There should be no doubt that the West is an oligarchy, and for that to change, some kind of revolution has to come.

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I'm reminded of Bill Hick's closing "it's just a ride," except I don't agree with refusing to play for good as a result of that cognitive mindset.

Completely agree with this.

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My gripe arises from the idea that it seems impossible to attribute the better aspects of humanity to human agency itself. Whenever a person does, says, or writes something profound, we're so quick to attribute it to intervention - which is supreme BS, in my opinion. We should celebrate human accomplishment as human accomplishment before positing ridiculous fantasies because 'humans are inherently evil' or some such.

Yes, I have heard many people talking about their "muse", this being whispering into peoples ears profound sentences,harmonic tunes and what not.
I always want to scream at them "No, it was YOU who wrote that, please do not give the credit to some invisible angelic being that does not exist".
It is weird that we are so afraid of giving the credit to "humanness".

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I could get an arguement that they might all think that they could never vote for something which then turns out to be bad.

But other than that, what do you mean?

I do not get what you are trying to say in that sentence. Sorry about that.

I guess I was trying to say that I do not believe that the current system of voting is working very well, unless you are rich. Does it matter who you vote for in an oligarchy? The whole system needs to go, the experiment needs to be shut down.

I might add that I like your idea of growing your own shit, instead of buying. It does give you an advantage. I practically live in the woods, so there is a lot of potential in growing herbs and vegetables. I have not quite started yet, but we have the greenhouse ready to go :)


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« Reply #26 on: November 07, 2013, 10:05:01 pm »
There should be no doubt that the West is an oligarchy, and for that to change, some kind of revolution has to come.

I believe.

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I'm reminded of Bill Hick's closing "it's just a ride," except I don't agree with refusing to play for good as a result of that cognitive mindset.

Completely agree with this.

He tried speaking truth, in our limited capacity.

It is weird that we are so afraid of giving the credit to "humanness".

Super strange.
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Francis Buck

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« Reply #27 on: November 07, 2013, 11:04:34 pm »
Meant to mention this earlier, but I agree with you guys on the whole "give credit where its due" thing regarding humans. This also for me ties into the pseudo-pessimistic viewpoint that seems to be popular, even if I generally think it's more of a shallow, trend-following reaction rather than a carefully reasoned out perspective ("I don't want to live on this planet anymore," etc.). This, in turn, goes into line with the idea that the world is somehow worse now than it has ever been, and is getting even more horrible, and also the idea that humans are inevitably going to destroy ourselves. I think part of it is ironically fed, as I mentioned in my earlier re-post, by a sort of arrogance, and an insistence that humanity now is at some sort of "peak" (just as, say, the Romans thought), when in reality it's more likely to be just another random spot out of what may be an incredibly long history going forward.

Somewhat of a tangent here, but I remember being kinda pissed (and disappointed) when Stephen Hawking made that comment about how we should be afraid of alien life, since it's likely to be violent and aggressive, a conclusion he arrived at by looking at humanity's history. It pissed me off because I knew that since Hawking said it, a bunch of people (or more people than already do) would latch onto the concept thinking it suddenly has credence, and I was disappointed because it seemed like a really close-minded concept from someone that is otherwise clearly one of the most intelligent people in history. I just find the idea that advanced civilizations, or even ones near to the most advanced societies of our current time, are going to go around finding other life simply to war with it, is kind of...dumb. For starters, there's virtually no practical motive. Any resource on Earth (aside from life itself) can be found in abundance elsewhere in the universe. Beyond that though, I think using our own primitive history as a way of predicting how an advanced alien species might interact with us is almost hilariously shortsighted, not to mention anthropocentric (which is why I bring this topic up -- it's the same sort of "humans are inherently bad" viewpoint, only placed onto the entire universe). There's an incredibly vast difference between something like what happened between Spanish Conquistadores and the Aztecs, and what would happen between two spacefaring civilizations that likely were forced to travel incredible distance and overcome enormous technological hurdles just to meet each other in the first place. It also speaks to how modern civilizations act. We're hardly perfect by any means, but there's also a very notable effort to undo damage we've caused, and to conserve the preciousness of life, which a lot of folks tend to completely gloss over in these discussions. The important thing, too, is that these tendencies appear to grow more common as a civilization grows more developed and intelligent. I don't think it's going to suddenly stop, or turn the other way around.

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« Reply #28 on: November 08, 2013, 12:16:08 am »
Is the ink still drying on the contract that both ensures that price remains the same as well as ensuring the income from another corporation is basically on tenure, James?

You seem really sure.

I have no idea, recipe is online though.

You may have a good point but I sold my soul to Skynet a long time ago.

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« Reply #29 on: November 08, 2013, 06:31:58 am »
Then skynet owns nothing of you...


Francis,

I'm inclined to think the same as Hawking. The key factor being religion (no one really thinks of religious aliens, do they?), and not resources in the sense we think of. There's really not much point talking about how we try to repair the damage afterward - I'm sure any alien race is not going to be a hive mind and there will be quite different cultures amongst it who try to do different things than the zealots. Heck, earth could be in a designated 'preservation zone' right now for all we know?

But the thing is, if your first contact is with the zealots, and they can cross the stars, they've probably brought enough nukes with them to be the equivalent of a death star.

It's not just a question of how many murders there will be and then folks on both sides latter try and patch it up and feel bad about it together.

It's funny - I used to believe in UFO's/alien visits, 'like a calculator believes in numbers', I'd say - until I found how much people delude themselves (as well as the f ton of cameras around now but no footage). But now I wonder again, because pretty much all the stories I heard had the aliens acting in really quite batshit insane sorts of behaviours. Which isn't quite the way we make up stories, but would match with a self modifying race, post their own semantic apocalypse (oh, one of my pet theories was that the greys aren't aliens. Just time travelers)