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the old young man
So even a town that I’m positively fond of can’t hold me for long. I’ve decided not to stay. Going back to where things make sense, where I belong. Where my actions matter and decisions I make are the difference between life and death, instead of some long drawn-out attempt at filling life with meaning.
“The ride does not require an explanation, only occupants.”
When every day is new and exciting and I have everything I need to live on my back. Where competition is an irrelevant concept. Come with me, I’ll show you how exciting it is being alone...
Context and self-knowledge. What do you consider to be your most important possessions? Your car? Your TV? I'm betting it's more like letters, photos, books and your writing. I think they provide context for life. Without them, you might feel the same panic as when you're asked to describe what you know about international politics. You probably know a lot about international politics, but it's the way of drawing out that knowledge that counts.
I also believe that it's forgotten principles more than fluctuating emotional states that radically change your assessment of complex phenomena... like (once again) international politics.
Feynman once said: “I don't understand anything I can't do myself”. The ultimate affirmation of learning by doing. It's especially interesting because it comes from someone who was not a bumbling, self-defeating headcase, but someone who rose to the top of his field. Someone whom physics superstar Niels Bohr came to for level-headed criticism of his theories. (Everyone else was too busy being in awe of Bohr) Maybe Feynman was smarter than most of us, but just maybe he was a product of his philosophy. Perhaps only laziness holds us back from a fuller understanding of our universe.
Lying in bed this morning, listening to my mind go through its idea-feasibility-defeat cycle. Two sides of my consciousness constantly at war, but mysteriously keeping the peace. Thinking about people pushing for a result from society, who have missed a detail so that they are unknowingly pushing in the wrong direction. But they are doing something.
Thinking of people I’ve known who’ve gone down a foolish path and ended up in the same place. Greater knowledge would have told them it was a folly to begin with. But they had fun getting fucked up.
Meanwhile I’m getting tired doing nothing.
The problem with striving to remove bullshit from society is that there won't be much left afterwards.
We are all well-acquainted with the concept of dole-bludging (thanks to 'A Current Affair', TV's best bullshitting service) but I wish to expose a more insidious and widespread condition: truth bludging.
Truth bludging is wanting something to be true so much that you cease balancing arguments and evidence in a rational fashion. I find it interesting that some of the most marginalized in public debate are precisely those who endeavor to avoid truth bludging.
So, do you avoid thinking time too?
To have no idea. To not want to be aware of complexity. To use people to your advantage but balk at reciprocation. Running away at the slightest scent of complication, into your overused barley-state of depression. To never grow up, never reach sentient consciousness. To let right and wrong mingle, and grin as your moral boundaries float away like so much hot air. To punish those who try for something better and encourage those who wallow with you.
Behold, this is the face of modern alternative thought; I’m forced to choose between them and car-wife-house rat racers.
I have two cutouts from the paper in front of me. I’m looking for a job, after a year of jobless travel thinking. I have to fulfil the competing demands of income, low moral compromise, and larrikin eccentricity.
Am I a pushbike postie in Hobart city? Can I ride 36 hours per week competing with motorbikes? Or am I a professional ‘layperson’ working for the Australian Antarctic Division ethics committee? Does that increase my chances of living my dream life with the seals and seaweed on Macquarie Island?
Maybe not, but at least I get government-subsidised internet in the meantime.
stream of consciousness soul human energy field morphogenetic fields oneness odic force aura vibrations seven middle-physical layers energy planes of creation astral travel existential poles chakra Why can we not be sober? Reincarnation clairvoyant kirilan photography psychic MORAL RELATIVISM thetan exorcist jesus mohammed god doublethink spiritual realm It doesn't matter what you think, everyone will keep believing in their delusion, knowingly or not.... but what if the truth doesn't even matter any more?
Douglas Adams. Richard Dawkins. Daniel Dennett. Albert Einstein, you are honored for your truth-searching amongst so many who don't care and don't want to know.
What’s it like to be inside your mind? Sometimes I wish I could grab your head firmly with both hands, close my eyes and see inside. Individuality has its advantages, but so much of what I believe hinges on what happens inside other minds. I don’t want to only guess. I don’t want to be limited by my own assumptions. Your knowing smiles were once enough, but now my empathy is clouded. By time, by distance, by a butterfly’s wingbeat I don’t know. Assumptions are all I have. I remain alone inside my mind - for all eternity.
Dear ‘Discovery Institute’, you justify my rage. You are as duplicitous as we imagine, as childish as we presume. You claim you seek to save society but are the face of a major agent contributing to its reactionary slide. You forget that the universe just is, that it does not conform readily to what you want it to be. The world is bigger than you and your beliefs. You make the choice to live in denial of reason personally, not on behalf of all the people. Celebrate your ignorance, invest in insanity. The drumbeat of science will continue with or without you.
What would it be like having sex with yourself? Not someone like you, but actually you. Would they know exactly what you wanted and indulge your deepest fantasies? Or would the passion fall away because there was no mysterious other soul to connect with? Like living (fucking?) inside a clock, life (sex) would be somewhat predictable. That begs the question – if sex with yourself wouldn't be enjoyable, then what makes sex with someone else so damn exciting? Is it the surprise that comes out of discovering a hidden detail in their libido? Or is it truly a communion of souls?
I wonder if other people actually research what others tell them. I devote a lot of my time to verifying claims that seem to be important. For example, a seemingly intelligent person claimed that asian bodies are inherently more efficient than caucasian ones. Racial theories make me nervous, as they can be used to justify so much latent hate. However, if 'sensible' science shows these sorts of things to be true, then I feel I should be prepared to present the facts, limiting the dangerous extrapolation to race superiority. Does anyone else keep long lists of these questions to research?
The more I think I know,
the less I have anything interesting to say.
The more I learn,
The less interested I become in hearing other people's opinions,
And the less I feel like talking to people,
(and the lonelier I get...)
A physics professor once told us half this story
In terms we were trained to visualise --
That knowledge can be represented by an expanding sphere,
Surrounded by and immersed in a soup of ignorance.
The sphere's surface, the edge of knowledge,
Would then grow ever larger as the sphere expanded.
No truer statement I have heard since then.
Ever wondered what it's like to woo women? Here's a taste of the frustration...
I'm looking for a guy who calls me beautiful instead of hot, who calls me back when i hang up on him, who will stay awake just to watch me sleep. Wait for the guy who kisses my ford head, who holds my hand in front of his friends, Wait for the one who is constantly reminding me of how much he cares about me and how lucky he is to have me. Wait for the one who turns to his friends and says, "...that's her."
Today I'll try to write about something happy. Unsurprisingly, my joy today comes from Wikipedia, that mighty repository of life, the universe and everything. In a magazine, I read a stunning quote attributed to Leo Tolstoy. His last words were: “even in the valley of the shadow of death, two plus two does not make six.” I was even more happy to discover that he was the author of the famed book 'War and Peace'. Famed to me, I must admit, because it is the shining example of a long book. Marriages of half-knowns make me very happy indeed.
Once someone complained that people take better care of their pets than other people in need. A little younger, a little more ignorant and more hopeful, I nodded in agreement. Now I can't blame people because I feel the same.
People are usually guilty as charged.
Pets employ their right to silence.
You can only wonder what that look in their eyes means; and nevertheless every day you are greeted with unbounded exuberation at your presence.
People are expected to talk. Always talk. Silence makes you strange, even when there's nothing to say. Never miss an opportunity to shut up.
Climate change: It's like we've been shoplifting for years, been caught, and trying to argue that we have a right to shoplift in order to have more children.
We need a leader now to lead the people. Not to their own short term interests, but the interests of the planet. As the Greens so rightfully say, the economy is a wholly owned subsidiary of the environment. What's the alternative? That we keep smiling as people dig their own graves of selfishness and materialism? The facade is being eroded rapidly, but most of us aren't ready to face truth and morality.
Hope is more important than anything else, right? No matter what happens, no matter what comes and what goes, hope is the keystone that holds everything together. Well why do I feel so sad ring-fencing my hope?
Amongst so much truth searching and self-correlating, my only patch of sacred ground left is hope. That would be okay if all the evidence pointed in that direction.
But I must make the final commitment to truth and let go. Truth is the primary seed -- always has been for me, and I must hope that I find hope in truth. Somewhere.
An Ode to Bob Brown.
You are the true hero of this country, indeed – this planet. All true revolutionaries are ahead of their time and are subject to the shit end of the stick of public opinion. You believe in reality, even after such long exposure to the surreal and rarified atmosphere of suit-land. White collar communities, where change can be truly effected, but where people like us least belong. You have inspired a generation and you will not be forgotten. You are cause for great hope for our species. I only hope I can continue the noble fight.
Despite my major contribution to Wikipedia being deleted for some obscure and novel reason (The word Transwiki hasn't entered my vocabulary yet) the cuddlebuddy concept still seems to exist. I have found someone who is:
b) soulful and
c) likes the idea of nonsexual touch.
I suppose that means she's special because those three criteria exclude many people. I'm on the comedown from the first cuddle now, and it's an amazingly similar state to serotonin depletion after ecstacy. It's wonderful to have a positive outlet for powerful longings to be connected. Where living is not just a show.
Hey, you know what? I don't care that some people are coordinated or have lots of friends or can recite stories and jokes with ease. I won't waste time worrying about skills I don't have. I have a simple answer for the paranoia that comes with feelings of skilllessness. (Triple L score!)
It is this: People are quite welcome to find their worth in random skills you don't have. It's their thing, that's fine, it's peaceful. Your job is to get on with exposing the truth, self-awareness and true freedom. Raw passion can replace my lack of juggling ability...
Butterfly economics. The application of chaos theory to the quite bizarre field of economics. The facts are startling; widely-reported economic predictions aren't worth the electrons that produced them. The uncertainty in the prediction is generally the size of the signal!
The only thing that seems to stand up is a slow, plodding, overall growth of two percent per annum in capitalist countries. Perhaps thinking about a zero-growth economy is beyond even the mavericks outside orthodox economic theory. I may need several lifetimes for this problem – a couple for theory formulation and a few more to do some convincing!
Ever noticed how flies fly for so long? Okay, so you've seen those graphs that show you that flies are overall inefficient travelers, but heck, they do buzz around for a long time before getting tired. Makes you wonder how they manage to store all that energy and convert it into wing flaps so readily. I can't imagine a human running until they lost most of their body fat. I can imagine, however, silicon chips with inherently conducting polymer wings flapping about a lab pretty soon.
Just one of those everyday things that makes you stop and rediscover nature's genius.
Processing information, capturing, channeling, sorting data. Caching, timing, correlating, streamlining. Reading, thinking, writing. Hand to mouth action. So much to know. So much information. So much research required to reveal fact or fiction. Rely on gut in a complicated world? Choose not to care? The truth is dynamic.
Dynamic too in the sense that dealing with this lifestyle requires boom and bust emotional cycles. Times absorbing of massive amounts of information, times of escaping the input and clearing one's head with a clear compass direction.
The data or the jazz. The data is ones and zeros. Life is the jazz.
I wonder if anyone has killed themselves while feeling happy about themselves but unhappy about humanity.
Would that not be the ultimate freedom? Or does being unhappy about self necessarily demand unhappiness about humanity, and vice-versa?
I fantasize about jumping off some of the great sheer drops in the world. Half dome in Yosemite. No longer need to worry about the fear you might fall. To die free and on your terms. It seems so beautiful against the backdrop of pointlessness of life and being dead forever anyway. Like the final middle finger salute to a non-existent god.
Why do people bother wearing underpants? I only have one pair of boxers, and I can't remember the last time I wore them. Don't get me wrong; it's not about fetish (unless you're turned on by the track pants, moccasins and beanie look) it's all about convenience.
If you don't buy socks your shoes start to smell like moon cheese. If you leave the milk out it'll acquire a novel tang. But why refrigerate butter? I mean, nobody puts their undies in the fridge do they?
We are creatures of habit, but some habits wither in the light of reason!
Everyone needs to have a secret life. To feel like a double-agent, to reserve one's true nature. So I'm going to start a secret society. It's going to be called the Lost World society. There are people out there who are sane, logical and emotional, and I want to find them. We, the pessimistic but truthful, seek to mourn the loss of precious reason. Mourning all that could have been – but privately celebrating the virtues of truth. Taking comfort and building strength that we are united in our aims – to make humanity realise our houses are built on sand.
It struck me today that a common thread between greenies and rednecks is freedom. Rednecks want freedom to do their thing – drive their car as much as they want, go dirt biking wherever they please, do burnouts to display their driving prowess and thus attract mates.
What sort of freedom do greenies want? I would argue they are interested in freedom of will, which seems to carry with it an inherent responsibility.
Responsibility is certainly a swear word in redneck circles, so it seems they won't be finding common ground with greenies just yet, but at least it's a start!
Religion as a survival trait.
Religions tend to have rigid moral codes, where the wisdom of past ages has worked out all the answers for you previously, and all you have to do is follow.
I spend a lot of my day searching, worrying, questioning, on my quest for truth. Wouldn't it be lovely if someone had done all the work for me already?
Then I could get on with work, life and, most importantly – reproduction, without succumbing to doubt and introspection. Indeed, I regard bearing children as somewhat paradoxically antisocial.
My beliefs will die with me, but not religion....
Me with my theories, functions and explorations.
Me with my reasons but dark loneliness.
Sitting with Erin at the top of the field and telling her I loved her.
Holding Mel in my arms, her face buried deep in my chest.
Saying goodbye to Shoni on our last night together.
Kissing Natalie for hours because she was beautiful.
Listening to Anthony saying that he couldn't hold on to life much longer.
Watching Jane fold inward with such mysterious sadness.
Bleak, uncertain, beautiful;
Nervous, sad, poor.
Hope, awareness, freedom.
Deny us no fear.
This is my way, now attack my soul.
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