how do you win at three card monte?
whenever i critize the subject of history (the study of it) i am met with the same response: we mustnt repeat our mistakes; we must learn from the past; those who dont know the past are doomed to repeat it. i am fairly certain these are widely held beliefs that have been passed around as decent arguments for the study of history. also, let me clarify, i dont believe the study of history is not to be pursued, i just believe it is not any more important than any other study. in fact, my interest in physics i believe to be extremely useful to mankind; however i dont believe it to be that important. and i believe history is in the same exact position (naturally, im biased in the way of saying physics is more important, but im aware of that bias, and removing it for the time being). now, on with the show.
they must have known.
learning from the past? avoiding historical mistakes? repeating ourselves? fuck that. learn from the present. the present is so unlike the past that history is barely even relevant most of the time. remember, history also enables resentment. its history that has created the problems of kashmir, the problems in rwanda, the problems between israel and palestine. its history that created the first and second gulf wars. it was history that the nazis believed to be righting when they killed millions of jews. not that i think history should be banned, im just saying, lets be honest about its contributions to society. physics hasnt just contributed the principles behind nearly every comfort of modern living, its also responsible for what was probably the largest uncomfort in modern living: nuclear weapons. and i suppose to further clarify, its not historians who are responsible for these idiotic wars and genocides, its psychotic leaders and groupthink mentalities enabling them.
on thursday dr Wolf told me it was too much at once, to expect all humans to treat each other well all year long. so i guess i should promote baby steps?
its so bizarre, Corey's confidence in knowing enlightenment. i suppose my problem is due to other people: if one is enlightened, are they then qualified to declare that others are enlightened? are they qualified to declare that others are not enlightened? could i be enlighteneed and not know it? no, i believe Corey stated you would know. but how can he say that without being enlightened?
i left the contents of my stomach in san francisco (actually it was keene).
the original argument began when i stated that there is no difference, (to the one experiencing it) between 'premature enlightenment' and 'the real thing'. i should have gone the one step further to use that as an argument against the concept of true enlightenment altogether, but alas, i did not conceive of it in that moment. Corey responded by explaining that he believes that i would know if i were enlightened, unequivocally. which is odd, because that just plain violates the rule that we should ultimately always doubt our senses on some level. as a strict physicalist, it seems very obvious to me that my perception of the world is just a complex pattern of novel chemical reactions, in which case, the idea of 'enlightenment' and the associated physical feelings, are nothing more than a defined state of those patterns, and in which case those patterns can occur without any logically meaningful insight... dammit, im rambling a lot. i also want to add now, what the fuck does enlightenment even mean? some vast secret revealed? there are no secrets! some deeper meaning? there is no meaning! these questions are all so poorly defined they will always fail under minor scrutiny and bend to personal interpretation. yet i keep going.
if one is not enlightened, can they detect enlightenment in another person?
all of this quantification i do, it destroys humans. i think humans are much more interested in qualification. and feeling. i want to learn to feel for a while. but ill need someone to teach me.
those were all things i wrote about while doing my laundry this evening.
ive been learning/hearing more and more recently about depression of mothers after childbirth... and its weird. id say id like to learn more about it, but i suppose i dont want to ever experience it (which makes it sound like i myself might have a baby one day, which i will not).
i wonder if the severe limitations that internet communication introduce promote our ability to articulate.
when Chris left tonight, he said, "see you cody" so i responded "see you later" except the way i said it made it sound like i was calling Chris 'later', which made me felt awkward, cause i felt like it meant i didnt remember his name or something. but he didnt seem to even notice. then i told Bryant.
tonight i read this about Einstein: His was not a life of prayer and worship. Yet he lived by a deep faith — a faith not capabIe of rational foundation — that there are laws of Nature to be discovered. His lifelong pursuit was to discover them.
His realism and his optimism are illuminated by his remark: "Subtle is the Lord, but malicious He is not"("Raffiniert ist der Herrgott aber boshaft ist er nicht."). When asked by a colleague what he meant by that, he replied: "Nature hides her secret because of her essential loftiness, but not by means of ruse." ("Die Natur verbirgt ihr Geheimnis durch die Erhabenheit ihres Wesens, aber nicht durch List.")
and i thought it neat.
for a second i thought i might be 25 years old... that was a really weird feeling...
also, i read some stuff about Paul Erdos (umlaut o): he called god the "supreme fascist", and blamed him for things like hiding his glasses, visas and other stuff, when he couldnt find what he was looking for. this included the most elegant proofs of mathematical problems that Erdos was working on. "the supreme fascist created us to enjoy suffering" he said, "the sooner we die, the sooner we defy his plans".
why cant we get fucked up everywhere we go?
its dollar draft night down at the botanical garden. - Doug Stanhope
i think he once said that if he wins in '08 and you voted for him he will let you take a dump in the upstairs bathroom of the whitehouse, so hey, its worth a shot!
as hard as i am to read is as hard as it is for me to read other people.
you get someone to play.
(do these silly puzzles i build entertain anyone?)