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Category Archives: culture

we all have an achilles heel
those of us who work out diligently in the gym
have more visible ones

in the land of the trees
the bark is of far greater value
than the bite

it seems now to be completely possible to be wrong while standing firmly on the foundation of what is considered right, …and equally possible to be right while aligning to what is considered to be essentially wrong

in knowing so much, we seem now to know almost nothing at all, …and even that which we so dearly cling to slips between our fingers as our fists flay away at those whom we think oppose our own views

the obsessive fascination with words, numbers, pictures, socially determined ideas, constructs and popular values, results only in the loss of the real language of life

we all hate being told what to do
yet we love being in control

we all resist change
yet we all want to try change others

we all like to express ourselves to others in order to spread our own perspectives
yet we all get bored when hearing others do the same

everything in our lives is always only about ourselves

constructive, persistent, brutal, self criticism is the greatest tool to world peace

there is no such thing as universal subjectivity
subjectivity is … subjective
when subjectivity gains a social conformity it is always at a cost
this cost is primarily to the individual
it demands a compromise that subjugates reason and sensibility and elevates primal insecurity in all individuals
it needs no policing because if any individual thinks, speaks or acts independently they are censured, marginalized and if necessary expelled
it is also at great cost to the whole group as it lowers the honesty, integrity, intelligence, morality, ethics, functionality, productivity, etc. … to the lowest common denominator
one of the most deceptive forms of social conformity is democracy
democracy is manipulative and coercive at its root and masquerades brazenly as individual and corporate freedom and power to and for the people, but in effect only emasculates a group or even a nation and reduces its value and effectiveness to the level of the scum at the very bottom of the collective gene pool
religion and capitalism are the identical murderous twins of democracy
it is difficult to say which came first, but they are all equally diabolical
socialism and communism are merely democracy at an even more mindless, vulgar and violent level

unquestioned answers

 

One of my young ones questioned me about the importance we place on planning and time management, on setting goals, on thinking ahead and thinking about things deeply.

“Why do you older guys always want us to think and make plans and be accountable with our time?  Why can’t you just chill?”  “Things are what they are, … why can’t you just let it be?”

I answered,

“One day you too will be older like me and then you will remember this conversation, and I’m sure at that time you’ll see things from a very different perspective.”

 

“Maybe I won’t.”  he replied.

“Maybe none of us will be here anymore?”

“You say you make plans and prepare for the future.  Then how come is the world in a worse state than ever before?  And why does it seem so highly likely that it’s going to continue getting worse, and that it most probably cannot ever recover, that it’s probably on an inevitable course towards total destruction?”

“Is this what you planned for?”

“Is this what your thinking achieved?”

“Is this what you worked so hard for?”

 

I remain silent.

It is difficult to hear and speak at the same time.

 

 

I’ve begun to think that maybe we desperately need to have an idol? … and a ‘physical’ one at that

… that maybe we’ve created “God” in our own image to substantiate and justify our very subjective world views … that we participate in institutionalized religious activities primarily to abate our own insecurities? … to try shift our shaky and subjective views as far away from their desperate subjectivity as possible by joining together with others who seem to share our beliefs … or at least a fairly similar perspective?  …joining together with others who seem to affirm the views and values we hope are true, … those who encourage us and make us feel good about ourselves and our frail choices… the ones we really never chose for ourselves, but that which we picked up from our own social and cultural contexts?

… and that maybe we are indeed profoundly frail … and that possibly we know deep down that our perspective is merely guess work at best

… but this is so extremely frightening for us, … some unmentionable

so we flock together…

just in case?

… and that it’s not really worship of God we seek to participate in and be part of, … but rather a grasping to hopefully obtain a sense our own ‘worth-ship’? .. as we stumble about, trying to make sense of our existence and the meaning of it all

 

… but maybe it’s all ok?

maybe God’s not so upset about this?

 

maybe God really is omniscient?

who amongst us would have guessed that?

and maybe God’s okay with it because at least we are searching … and hopefully asking questions?

 

and hopefully this is true?

 

… can I get an ‘amen’?

we watched and studied others like flies on a wall … and not having a life of our own we found directionlessness in the vicarious apparition before us and this we celebrated as reality … it’s not that the indecision was emphatic, it was more that the next steps were backwards… so, not satisfied with an unlimited imagination we ventured headlong into the game of deceptive charades

 

and/or or not

 

so, not satisfied with an unlimited imagination we ventured headlong into the game of deceptive charades … it’s not that the indecision was emphatic, it was more that the next steps were backwards… so we watched and studied others like flies on a wall … and not having a life of our own we found directionlessness in the vicarious apparition before us and this we celebrated as reality

Recently I have been having discussions with some about the way we think and act. More specifically about the easy access we have to immeasurable data juxtaposed to the apparent lack of original, individual thought and action. I was expressing my frustration over what I see as the prevalence of mindless ‘groupthink’ in almost every dimension of our lives and especially the way on social interactive media that we flood our lives with glossy, full colour photo-shopped memes with warm-fuzzy quotes from “famous” people and at best, superficially regurgitated opinions of others… with very little, if any well constructed personal thought or individual perspective

Maybe the scientific revolution with the dominance of all its legal referencing and quoting of prior research publications to substantiate a claim has unwittingly muddied the waters of honest, open and free debate irreparably? Religion especially has seemingly fallen prey to this modus operandi where sermons and arguments are substantiated on “established” quotes and opinions of others (doctrine, dogma) rather than well thought out individual perspective. Even universally known scriptural text references seem to have lost some of their accuracy and sometimes even relevance if not accompanied by a literary ‘topographic grid-reference’ (John 3:16) and even if a concept is rephrased in normal, contemporary English it is often barely understood and most often rejected.

One response I got in the midst of this complex discussion was a colourful picture of our planet posted on my wall with an artistic rendition of a surrounding communication network graphically superimposed over the circumference of the globe.

Underneath was the meme: “We are all connected. One world, one love!” (a very common anthem in our day)

The person who posted this seemed to feel this meme would “piss me off” and they wrote as much in an accompanying comment to the meme.

My reply was as follows:

… I seem to have perhaps hit a bit of a nerve, … and yes, we are all connected, we are all one, as you suggest, one love, yes, indeed… but these ideas sound so appealing until we really begin to understand them …
in reality if we are so very “one” then we are so “one” that we are also “one hate” and if we all share as one in all things it stands to reason that in our universal oneness we also rush along towards a shared fate, … together…
… and of these and many other memes we seem to love to speak so evangelistically over ourselves and others … what are we really trying to say? … or are we perhaps shouting louder and louder lest our real voice is heard?

Perhaps it is true that none of us really seek for truth, … we seek only for those ideas and contexts which confirm our preconceived ideas …

… wide and narrow are the two ways, as they say …
and few and many are the responses to this journey… one man’s meat is another mans poison, but we all eat from the same banquet…
… indeed, we are one, absolutely one, inextricably one…
…and so we invent ideas about a ‘heaven’ and a ‘hell’ to position ourselves more favourably

nevertheless, as we the multitudes say, we are indeed all one … an inconvenient truth, … or a reassuring lie?

heaven and hell

a powerful understanding amongst many is that of there being a “heaven” waiting for the faithful and obedient …

a glorious realm out there where a personified God dwells in all power, perfection, peace and presence

… a place that is reserved for those who are the faithful and obedient down here on earth…

however, as with all things there is always more than one angle to it all and in this instance a powerful statement is also made, …

“people will not say, ‘here it is,’ or ‘there it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you”

it seems reasonable that this heaven is not somewhere else but actually inside us … not “out there” somewhere but “in here” somewhere… very close indeed

and perhaps not necessarily a physical place, but more a perception, … a tangible concept… a consuming state of awareness … a reality that stems from within … which flows up and outwards … perhaps like rivers of living waters?

an equally powerful understanding amongst many is that of there being a “hell” waiting for the unfaithful and disobedient …

some realm of eternal torment out there where personified evil dwells in all vulgar violation, violence and degradation

… a place reserved for those who are the unfaithful and disobedient down here on earth

… and perhaps not necessarily a physical place, but more a perception, … a tangible concept…

and as with all things there is always more than one angle to it all…

 

so it appears that there are these two opposites, heaven and hell

…two different places?

or perhaps two different ends of the same string?

 

… could it not be equally true that the kingdom of hell is within us…?

gaga

she’s in our country doing her thing at the moment and there’s great commotion this way and that about all that’s happening…

but in reality Gaga may just be far less controversial than we make her out to be?

it well may be that she is merely a representative of the vain plasticity of the world we have created… and maybe she’s no more or less ‘righteous’ than anyone of us?
perhaps when we hate her we judge ourselves in our own hypocrisy…

and when we love her we also judge ourselves in our  addiction to superficiality, mediocrity and vanity?
… more alarmingly maybe we are her and she is us?

and maybe that’s why we love to hate her and we hate to love her… and all other ‘popular’ persona

after all, in the end it’s all about us … you and me… and perhaps we deserve her and she deserves us?

are we able to consider that possibly the only reason she exists is because we give her life and we sustain her present and ongoing dominance in our consciousness?

could it be that we need her as much as she needs us?

and maybe Gaga is not alone?

… there’s the Zuma’s, Malema’s, Obama’s (and virtually every politician and pop celebrity there ever was and ever will be), social, cultural and religious leaders …

… and of course, then there’s you and me