Category Archives: philosophy/mysticism

Being Blessed

We each study the world outside of ourselves and the others who inhabit it with a careful eye. We hold in our mind  a stick. It is with this thing that we measure ourselves and use as a point of comparison with those who live beyond us.  Some are smarter, stronger, richer, prettier or more popular and in the spectrum of things it matters not except with respect to that stick we hold in our mind. This stick could be short or long, thin or fat and when it comes down to the point it is practically useless as a tool of measurement except in that it provides data. This raw data drawn from the point of comparison must be interpreted and here in lies the catch.

The stick is constructed of materials found in a great dark place, swampy and fetid it is that space that all people go to find the stick they will use to measure their lives and value with.  Its is there among the decaying good deeds, rotten best intentions and slippery and poisonous expectations that we may find this stick.  It is a permanent leaning into the dark and that is a weight we must deal with.

We can choose to interpret our data darkly or lightly and these methods of study can be simple or complex in the extreme. These things, these structures of thought are based on assumptions and definitions. We can choose assumptions, definitions, or reasons that are self-centered, picked on, singled out, lonely hopeless things and in that way they blind us.  They leave us living in an evil world where everyone is out to get us, against us and that we are alone.  We can also chose the opposite. Generally people don’t like to choose the opposite, being hated and picked on and facing a cruel world has a seductive quality like a cigarette or a gun.  It feels good and it is self reinforcing. In this way we chose to believe the worst of the hearts and minds of our fellow human beings. This is a choice about a thing of which we can know nothing, the heart and mind of another human being, even our selves is a thing we can know very little or nothing about. The greater world beyond is much the same, just because a reason exists doesn’t mean you’ll ever know or understand it. This is a thing that is unfathomable and in order to believe you must make a leap. You could choose to leap into the darkness or into the light and once the leap is made it will change the way the very world looks sounds and feels to you.

I once heard a person, on the radio say, that as your attitude improves and becomes more positive than good things will appear for you…much like magic. This idea is not correct inherently, things don’t appear and disappear like magic. They were always there and the only thing that has changed is a person’s ability to see these good things. This is what being blessed is about.

Being Blessed is difficult as so many that share this world with us are dark and play to the dark…after all its good for sales. This darkness wants to creep back into your heart and extinguish the light there much like a lonely candle faced with a hurricane. It takes effort and can be seen as a form of prayer, it is the idea that everyday there are wonders in the world there for anyone with the determination and fortitude to simply see. Much like the knight of faith from Kierkegaard’s work FEAR AND TREMBLING you live in the glory of a gentle kind world that, even in your worse times, offers simple gifts and blessings, gentle caresses of a smooth cool breeze just before dawn in the shadow world before the sun first shows is light.

Being Blessed is simply walking in Blessedness, seeing the beauty and kindness and relishing it as for many of us it is only small things that we are given. So throw away the stick and be in the moment and walk in the blessings you are given, like rain on a dry day, a smile from a strange, a gentle word, a precious moment of time or a shared song or meal.

For beginnings let me show you how…

Say to yourself or to the air the following words: IAM BLESSED…  You have to finish the sentence.  I’ll give you a few examples from my own existence.

I AM BLESSED By A wife that has taught me that a thing can be good even though it isn’t new.

I AM BLESSED by a wife that taught me that treasures can be found in the bottom of a dumpster.

I AM BLESSED By knowing to take pride in the work of my hands and how I am rather than my money and prestige.

I AM BLESSED as I have learned not to resent other people for decisions I have made

I AM BLESSED By being able to learn to cook from scratch, by myself.

I AM BLESSED by making my first action in any situation, hesitation.

I AM BLESSED by the kindness of strangers.

I AM BlESSED that my health isn’t worse.

I AM BLESSED with a wife I can spend eternity with.

I AM BLESSED with a sense of child like wonder in the world I live, that spreads from birds on the wing to rude squirrels and the colorful leaves of fall.

I AM BLESSED like the simple pansy, I live without pain or toil and am resilient from the most crushing blow.

I AM BLESSED with plenty of space in my heart to love many people.

I AM BLESSED that my enemies are far fewer than my friends.

Clarification: The Fall of the Age of Empires

Globalism, Love it, Hate it, don’t have any idea what its all about, where ever you fit, it’s here to stay.
Many view Globalism as a direct threat to national sovreinity others as an intense conspiracy to enslave the entire population under the dictatorial rule of a few elites. Illuminati, Reptilians, Insectoids from the planet Remulack, the mysterious inhabitants of the Blue list…Not to be confused with the independent traveler. Everything gets so muddy when there is so little clear information available, and there are reasons for that as mundane as they maybe.

First what exactly is Globalism? First we need to look back to a African Colonial of English Descent by the name of Rhodes, John Cecil Rhodes to be exact. The founder of the colony that use to bear his name, Rhodesia. You can look him up in any self respecting dictionary if your not in the mood to google him. In my beaten old dictionary they call him a statesman but really he was an industrialist with interests principally in mining. Gold, Diamonds and South Africa, if that chain of word doesn’t invoke less than pleasant images in your minds eye than your education is sorely lacking. Rhodes, that’s John Cecil, whether you loved him or hated him, either then or now was a surprisingly influential man. His legacy was the Rhodes Scholarship so that future captains of industry, political players or any other individual with serious prospects of holding a position of influence would be able to meet each other and network. It was much easier to accomplish change on a global scale if all the players knew each other and where on speaking terms.

I can hear my friends in the realm of conspiracy starting to howl already and as conspiratorial as this may seem nothing illegal was being done. For Rhodes before all else was a business man, business before all else even God, now what self-respecting capitalist could have problems with that.  By the way, the greys and the reptilians don’t like it any more than you do.

Rhodes, Remember John Cecil, had a vision and this vision was shared by others like Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, Rothschild just to name a few.  They were all making fortunes at about the same time, the 1890s.  This was a time when very little stood between a man, excuse me, a Company and profits and the idea was not only to maintain this atmosphere but to expand it,  All of this would be accomplished through legislation in the industrial world and the iron boot in the third world.  Of course this is a clear answer to the question in the first place.

So here we go:  Globalism is the movement to eliminate any barrier to the practice of business whether the barrier be the criminal code, labor laws, environmental laws,  tax laws, governments or populations.  Business is here to stay and you best get put of its way, of course there was always civil law for those of us whom could afford it.  At least that is the way it was but now this bloat rotten system of profit regardless of the human cost in starting to tetter,  But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

The world in which Rhode existed, don’t forget, John Cecil, was much different than ours.  It took weeks if not months to ship good from africa to the United States or England.  It was a time that telephones were just starting to reach there peak but we had yet to reach national telephone networks much less global.  Flying was a thing that only a lunatic would do, in the United states this is the time of the early birds before Airmail became the industry it would be by WWII or shortly there after.  Shipping was powered by steam, mostly coal and I am uncertain exactly when diesel took over the top spot as fuel for ocean transport but it was after Rhodes Death in 1902.  As much as the early industrialists longed for a world open to be wantonly plundered by business the were limited by the technology of the time.

It was with the evolution of three things that Globalism came into adult hood, 1) Communication, 2) Transportation and 3) production.  The last piece of that puzzle was communications by way of the internet.

Before I take this any further we should put this in a place in time.  Not time with respect to a date but in time with a sense of our own progress as a nation on a planet thick with the same.  We, the United States, are one of a group of nations collectively referred to as the west.  That’s west as in Western History ergo europe and the mediterranean basin and these people’s outward progress.  In this go around the West was the first to venture into the industrial age, through it and into the post industrial period.  When trying to understand the industrial age think factory.  The startling similarity between the communist and the capitalist during this phase is that all centers around the factory.  The factory, manned by labor to produce parts and finished goods for use or simply sale.

School, students file in and out of classrooms by the signal of the bell, like the factory whistle, given their lessons in an environment that is intended to be highly structured.  This is the institution that fabricates the next generation of the tools of production, like parts of a machine.  The teachers are highly educated for the purpose of fabricating these parts.  To understand the industrial restaurant go to any fast food establishment where those who wish to eat line up in the que and wait to order their food from an assembly line.  Healthcare where doctors function like an assembly line treating one patient after another, to see this for your self check out out patient pre-op.  In the University the material must be digested and mastery obtained by a strict regime, tested again and again, non destructive, to be sure the part is ready for the giant factory.  When the part is broken it is thrown on to the trash heap…Food stamps, disability or retraining.  As the tools of the establishment, labor, organize and gain benefits such as wages, reasonable working conditions and hours, and a serious voice in the government, business begins to look for greener pastures.  This is from which we in the United States are passing.  It leads to the rise of the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China) who are emerging into the industrial age.  Nations that are heavily industrial can keep their business by taking the opposite in tax policy that we have here in the United States but that is neither here nor there.  We are now a Global community, business roams looking for cheaper labor, production, resources and over head.  It is the nature of the beast, business seeks a higher income and at some point it comes down to divesting from labor.  The end result is that fewer and fewer of the population on the whole are capable of purchasing the goods that are produced.

This leads to a subsidy system.  We like to think about entitlements as a way or supporting lazy people.  the reality is that entitlements, government charity are a subsidy channeled through the parts to support the factory.  This is where we are at.  The old factory model is failing, it no longer applies to the reality in which we americans exist.  Now it applies to the BRIC nations.  Our Government, as a point of interest all governments in the west to a greater or lesser extent are subsidizing their factories.  In this hope they wish to sustain the industrial model which is failing around them.

In the beginning Government…Kings for example, existed to keep power in the hands  of a few chose by whatever god for just that task.  In time, through hardship and resistance government became an institution of and for the people.  Both to maintain order and to enforce laws for the common good,  With the rise of ADAM SMITH and capitalist, government found itself enslaved or representing, if you rather. the moneyed few.  When we think of the size of government, its tax revenues it strikes us in an intensely personal way.  Everything seems so disconnected but our government has become a channel for raise capital through taxation and delivering it to industry.  The institution, Government has become bloated with dead wood.

Government is intended to serve its people, all of its people.  When a Government adjusts to caring for a very few its perspective becomes skewed.  It generates systems for control.  It looses its interest in regulating business ans becomes a beast more interested in keeping its own population under control.  As crazy as it may sound this isn’t political really.  We the people are wandering into unknown country.

We are use to the idea of working through out or life time in a factory and having all the we need provided by a factory.  Its time to rethink.  Its time to reappraise worth, value, meaning and productivity.  We are living amidst the ruins of the factory.  The advantage is the internet for through it we can communicate.  If the government cracks down on this freedom it will hurt business as much as us.  So I say Simply, welcome to globalism, we all have a place in its realm to dwell.  Forget about suffering over the sherrade in far off washington sand start paying attention in your home town.  We need genius.  Its been with us before and maybe it is still with us and you today.

An Open Letter Concerning Ohio citzen and 9/11 incident

Her Names is Shoshana,

If I am saying her name correctly in my head then I can say safely that it is a beautiful name. I have no idea what to say as far as her detainment and the treatment that followed. It most certainly could have been much worse, but that is no consolation. I could say that I am sympathetic or empathetic and that would sound right but it would not be true. I read her Blog, I read Some Real Shock and Awe, I liked it. It was honest, parts of it were simply angry reflex all very human just like me but I don’t really have any idea what that is like, personally. I feel bad for everybody, including the hot discourse that I sampled in the comments.
I’ve had my home broken into on more than one occasion, I know what that feels like. I understand the constant threat of being institutionalized against your will for the common good, I live with that. I know what its like to be singled out by the cops because I am big, not fat, and weird looking, I understand how that feels. But all of that is just my feelings, I can’t say I truly understand what Shoshana was feeling during the process. Imagine not knowing why, having no contact with a lawyer, no clock, no sense of time and place and the entire idea of remaining silent and demanfding a lawyer, well, its cute and somewhat niave. Forgive me.

All I can say is I feel bad. I wish I could comiserate better, walk around in her shoes for a day. But I can’t, my feet are too big.
I don’t like the word race, honestly it comes from a time when race meant different species. We are all human regardless of our continent of origin and the shade of or skin. As far as profiling, that’s been going on as long as I can remember and that’s way before 9/11. Back then if ones skin was a tad to dark or hair too red and they were poor they would be routinely acousted in some neighborhoods and many municipalities throughout Erie County Ohio. The fact is the no one really cared because regardless of the shade, they were all poor. Poor people represent a threat, they are guilty until proven innocent. It wasn’t until an officer slipped and took a swipe at someone who could afford legal defense that things would get sticky. In the end the local courts would be run by the same cultural interests that were on the police force and nothing would come of it. People from the big cities would laugh and make comments aboput small town hicks never realizing that one day this set of attitudes would gain enough momentum to run the country.

Yet Shoshana did nothing wrong, said nothing, threatened no one so when it comes right down to it what happened to her has little to do with laws and a great deal to do with power.

Back in the 1850s, when the two political parties were the Whigs and the Democratic Republicans. or at least around that date Milard Filmore, the president at the time, was forced to call out the regular military to quell a serious civil disturbance.  The Whigs were the Anti-immagrant, Anti-Catholic and Anti expansionist party and with their help, there was some encouragement of nativist groups to commit acts of violence agaist first generation Irish and German immagrants as well as Free African americans some of which had never been slaves.  Priests were lynched along side African men, Churchs and imagrant businesss were burned, nuns and siaters were defrocked and “Freed” from cloister.  Now I can’t say that African, Irish and german stock all got along like the greatest of friends before the rise of nativism, but when the situation became life threatening they armed themselves and fought back.  So Millard Filmore sent out the army to act as peacemakers in a war zone, in this case New York City.  This is just an illustration of why the color line is so important.

It took a long time to draw the color line, that’s the divison between shades paler and shades darker and in the process cracked the largest political force in this or any other country.  The lower classes no longer saw themselves as having comon interests and began to fight amongst themselves.  They have it harder than us, we suffer more than they do, they have it too easy and finally, if you don’t like it then get out of the country…My oh My it doesn’t matter which shade you put on which side it only matters that there are sides, division.

What about other Shoshana’s, the one’s disappeared never to be heard of never acknowledged, are they out there?  Will they be in the future?  By denying the detained contact with the outside it is in fact as though they never were.  All the authorities have to do is deny, not acknowledge and ignore and many of us know how accomplished our government is at such things.  This is terrifying whether I side with Shoshana or not.  It forces or demands trust in a government that hasn’t not inspired even their own employees to such a state.  Its a lot to ask a free people.

Then are we free?  I guess if the argument stays where it should then we are, but don’t disent in some odd way, don’t stick your head out, don’t rock the boat.

In the comments there was a great deal of talk about rights which was sort of strange. I suggest that, if you can afford it, all of you order a copy of the Patriot Act and take a look at it.  Its a substantail work and I haven’t been able to get through it all the way. You see the bill of rights can be suspended individually, regionally or natiuonally at any time National Security is threatened.  There are two prescendents for this in American history, first the Civil War and second World War Two.  In effect peoples rights couldn’t be violated because they had no rights, now we are involved in the war on Terrorism and again, in esense the bill of rights is in effect only when the government decides that it is.  The whole thing is really simple, its called scapegoating.  You chose someone or a group conciously or through prejudice and create an air of suspicion and fear.  The history of this tactic in the United States goes all the way back to the beginnings of the cold war and the invisible menace, the red scare, nuclear terror.  Culturally the population has to clearly define itself asd good and fighting evil, it is an assumed definition so that we never question our, my, indivdual motives.  When some one is pulled out of line, skin shades too dark, different ethicity, or different religion or just weirder than the rest, those not chosen, at the surface feel relieved that this hidden mysterious undefined threat has been removed but more deeply we are just happy it wasn’t us individually that got pulled into detention.  Fear is a powerful motivator.

 

So for Shoshana I simply say sorry, I understand as best as I can and really wished it had never happen to you or and anybody else.  To the participants in the hot conversation in the comment section of her blog I only wonder…when are we gonna stop pickinging with each other and start working together to try and figure out, just exactly who or what is terrorising whom.

Yet more Babbling on the absolute sense

Why do we preceive what we do about ourselves, others or the world around us?  Do internal mental or emtional states influence what we preceive?  What does it mean to preceive? does preconception affect preception?

Here’s is a little experiement you can do yourself.  Find or purchase a small note pad/ stenopad, you know like the kind people use to make lists.  Label three pages in a row day one, the first of these three also labeled morning.  When you wake up for the day, sit on the edge of your bed for just a few minutes and let your thoughts clear and then, before you begin your morning write a short sentence, or if you prefer a string of adjectives about how you feel, emotionally or physically, and put a line under them.  You don’t need a great deal of detail to start but be honest.  After you done you bathing or whatever you do, avoiding the mirror as much as possible, before you leave for work or begin whatever project you maybe undertaking look in the mirror with intent and write down, under the line on page one the first word, words or sentence that comes to your mind.  Turn the page, at the top of page number 2 for day 1 write midday.  In the middle of your day, at lunch or when that time comes depending on your routine answer the following questions with a yes, no or ?.  They are, Do I feel attractive? Do I feel competant? Do I feel confident? Do I feel appreciated? and finally do I feel anxious?  This should only take a few minutes and when your done turn to page three.  This page, with day one labeled at the top is marked evening.  Before, or when, you get home for the evening, before interacting with your family or roommates give yourself a few minutes to clear the thoughts of the day from your mind and when they clear ask yourself, quietly, focused inwardly, how you feel.  Write a short chain of adjectives or a brief sentence and put a line beneath it.  In the evening before you go to bed for the night take a last look in the mirror, and record the first words that come to your mind.  Repeat this process for a week minumum, two weeks is ideal.  Once the pages are written don’t look back over them, leave them exit your thoughts, refrain from looking in the mirror more often than instructed, and finally don’t fret over the experiement.  Just be honest and be yourself.

When you have finished collecting the data then, when you have an hour or two, go over the information and ask yourself the following questions:  Has the level of my internal awareness changed, Have I become more aware of my moods and feelings and thoughts?  More importantly, does these internal moods affect my preceptions of myself in the mirror, in other words do my moods change the way I look?  How considerable do you suppose this change is?

I remember one night sometime ago while listening to my favorite radio program, Coast to Coast, when the guest, who’s particular name is unimportant, and the host, again whose identity is unimportant, had reached an impasse in their conversation.  The host and the guest had different points of view on the subject and the hosts efforts to make his point were being hung up for one simple reason.  The two kept using the same word or phrases to describe their slightly opposed views and didn’t seen to be able to communicate.  In other words it sounded as though they were making the same statements, saying the same words, but because of variances in meaning, the effort to express the differing view resulted in a fustrating experience for the host.  I could feel his frustration through the radio.  It wasn’t angry or nasty between the two but vexing.  The words in question were preceive, preceiving and preception.  The statement that started the dialog was, and I’m paraphrasing as I am unsure of the exact words, “If I preceive a threat, to myself or my family, then I will use any tool at my disposal to eliminate said threat.”  This was expounded apon tp include neighborhood, nation and such and I have heard it stated in one form or another since I was in my middle teens.

What does it mean to preceive a threat?  Often examples like this are used, “If you saw somebody about to shoot you then you would try to shoot them first? wouldn’t you? or if you saw a missle about to be launched and you could knock it over while it was still on the ground you would, its the only thing that makes sense.”  (Refrence the documentary, “Why We Fight.”)  This statement seemes obvious and direct but it logically presupposes intent.  This presupposition tends to automatically, more times than not, draw aggrement even though most of us, myself included don’t natural study said presupposition.  The argument presupposes both intent and some godlike omniscience on the part of the preceiver to know something that is otherwise unknowable.  I simpler language its dependent on two great big assumptions.  Question, have you ever been in a public place when a person whom looks familar in someway to you waves in your direction and when you wave back it becomes apparent they weren’t waving at you at all but someone else in your vicinity?  Remember the embaressment or feeling foolishness.  They looked somehow familar, where motioning in your direction and you assumed to were the object of said motions.  Has anyone yelled your name in what appeared to be your direction and as it were someone else near you just happened to have the same name?  Did you feel silly reacting to someone in a familar way or responding to your name when no one was talking to you in the first place?  If it this easy to draw a incorrect conclusion based on a simple assumption should we just start popping of rounds at some idiot who is only guilty of brandishing a firearm.  If you think that’s O’kay, then you can alway move to my home town, people around here fire off their guns for any old reason.

The reality is nothing more than a simple case of basic logic.  A statement is either true or it is not true.  Think about this:

Is it always true that possession of a weapon, be it a nuclear missle, conventional bomb, fighter plane, tank, battleship or even a hand gun implies or infers in anyway a person’s intent to use said weapon?

Or

Is it not always true that possession of stated weapon or weapons imply or infer a person’s intent to use said weapon?

People always get pissed at me when I ask such questions, stateing its not that simple or some other phrase that is generally specific and equally vague.  The fact is that it either is always true or its not always true, there is no moral presupposition or any other preconception involved, it is just the place were the conversation starts.  The United States has the largest aresnal in the world.  Our government borrows money to add to this stockpile.  If the first case is true, that intent is always implied and inferred then what does that tell you?  Remember that when someone starts ranting about the threat from Iran, Pakistan or China.  But wait, before you start to fume, What if the second case is true, that ownership of a weapon(s) does not imply or infer intent to use?  Then why borrow money to build weapons?  If they are not ever definitely going to be used then how will our government ever pay off all that debt?  The more I think on it the crazier the whole thing seems and it simply make less and less sense.

One last question, I do blather on, is feeling threatened the same thing as being thgreatened?  Both feeling and being are based on the act of preceiving.  As I have said, I am a paranoid schizophrenic so I understand the feeling of threat, especailly since I have heard it said, through the mass radio media of the 90s that people like me should be buried up to our necks and have our heads run over by bulldozers.  It was a long time ago and I felt very threatened even though I understood the source of the rage.  It involved a school shooting by an ex-employee who had a “history of mental health issues.”  I had not shot anyone yet somehow, by simple association, I had become a thing that should be elimuinated.  Just throw open the furnace doors and march me in.  I realize with thought that the talker on the radio may have been using an extreme position to raise awareness of serious issues in the mental health care system.  It was Meta who helped me grasp that, but what if I took the earlier position, “If I preceive any threat to myself or my family I will use any tool at my disposal to eliminate (Terminate) it.”  If any government or group has the moral imperative to act in self defensein such a way then so do I, don’t I?  In short, no, not I or any one else is in the moral right to, simply by acting in a violent fashion first, premptivelt elimante a preceived threat.  People feel threatened all the time, some act others, do not.  For some people here in my home town living on the far right, the election of a black president was intensly threatening.  Young African Americans walking our city streets with pride at finally being fully equal members of our society was seen by these individuals as strutting with lawlessness on their minds, after all. now they can get away with anything.

Always start your thought with a simple statement and a question.  Is your statement always true or not always true.  People feel threatened all the time, they say threatening things to each other on a daily basis.  If just feeling scared, or hearing or saying threatening sounding things is all it takes to give people the god given moral impertative to start killing each other, well, then, I guess the game called planet earth is just about over.

Babbling on in The Absolute Sense

Who, what, where, when and why were the most important questions when writting a theme on any given topic, even a short story, Sister Louise informed all of us in the first session of our freshman english class. Sister Marilyn’s speil stressed the same five words in sophmore english as a way to approach and gain an understanding of classical literature. Yes indeed I attended a private school, catholic, and in both cases these statements lulled me into a state of total unpreparedness from just exactly how demanding those classes, as it turned out, would actually be. If it hasn’t occurred to you yet, english is something of a second language. My native tongue is a combination of grunts, growls and barks with a liberal mix of maculine gastric sounds.
The five W’s are great but I always like to include How along with them. I suppose with proper application, when, where and what one might incidentally or entirely cover the domain of How but for the moment I will insist How stay in the mix. When it comes to our preceptions or senses, Where, When, Who and What, it could be said are the results of the exact interpetation of incoming data by our physical sensory apparatus. Why and less often, how often require some reasoning or logic as well to complete the process. But that isn’t really what the topic I’m writting to you is about, instead what I’m examining is how and why we preceive whatever we may be preceiving.  To rephrase, how do we sense or preceive the world and its objects and why do we preceive them in the manner we do. At first this may appear redundant so I ask your patience as I continue.

In Physics, for example, a complex problem or concept is broken down into parts through a method that isolates a single variable.  It is from there the real examination begins.  So with my topic, first, I think, the how of preception is important and a good place to start.  In simple terms, as I am a simple person. Light strikes the eye (sounds violent) the iris constricting or dialating depending on conditions needed to keep the volume of light with in an optimal range.  The lens behind the pupil refocuses the light so that it makes contact with the retina in an ordered and focused manner.  The photons (light) produce a chemical reaction within the cones and rods that compose the retina which produces an electric signal or blip, each of which is only a tiny bit of data.  The blip, or many blips as it were, travel along the optical nerve and are eventually deposited in the occipital lobe (at the rear of the cortex) where they are reassembled and used to create the picture we see.  That’s how I was orignally instructed in eighth grade biology and later in Sophmore biology.  It is simple and direct and an excellent example of scientific materialism.  My mother, a registered nurse, often described doctors as electricians, plumbers or automotive mechanics.  In her mind the human body was identical to any ordinary machine, thus the term, Scientific Materialism.

I accepted this for a long time, until somewhere around the age of twenty a peculair observation occurred to me.  I was sitting in my bedroom letting my thoughts drift as I often still do to this day when I was suddenly struck by both the above definition of the mechanics of sight and the sheer volume of my room.  That probably sounds odd, but if you stop for a few minutes on any day and simply look about at your enviornment, how much depth, height and width you can observe contigiously, any furniture, the flooring, things hanging on a wall or even, heaven forbid a cobweb in the corner.  Its immense, if your in the outside world it becomes huge and I haven’t quite figured out how it all fits inside my head.  The space between my ears is vastly inferior in volume then the space it is preceiving and conceiving.  Thomas Aquinas, early reniesance philosopher and Saint explained this by useing the term Phantasm.  This phantasm or phantom was a construct in minuture of the world outside and by some trick of the divine we could transpose it so that our view oif reality was flawless in its accuracy.  Imagine that there stood a huge hole in the floor but your phantom was not of high enough quality so that you would be aware of it, a treacherous situation indeed.  Of course Thomas Aquinas, My wife Meta informs me, borrowed the idea from the ancient greeks.  I guess all great ideas occur in people thoughts far more than once,

As strange as it maybe a version of this is still favored by some neural scientists and philosophers of late.  Useing terminology that startlingly resembles computer babble the brain translates the data to code that is being transcribed into the visual imagry that we understand as sight.  The act of seeing is itself something of an illusion allowing a seemlessness to our world.  Illusion is an interesting word for me, or anyone else, to chose.  There has been a position held by some that conciousness as we understanding is do to two competeing and more times than not opposed chains of extremely complex algorithms (Say that ten times fast) and in reality it is a phantom or an illusion.  If you substitue the word imagination for illusion in the above statements quickly become patently ludicrous.  Imagination is a term given to something concious, for instance, does a chair or a table have an imagination?

If you look at all the data being processed and all the traveling it has to do from here to there in the nervous system and around the brain it really makes one wonder why there doesn’t seem to be some sort of a drag in our preceptions, like a flutter or a stutter.  All that processing doesn’t happen instanteanously does it?  Maybe the individual lag in processing and understanding sensory imput is constant for all human’s.  Since each of us processes and responds at the same rate whatever lag there might be seemes nonexistant, after all we wouldn’t want to have a drag.  Wait a minute, we don’t all have the same drag or lag, just uses reflexes for an example.  Some people have faster than average and other people have slower than average reflex time, in this case physical reaction time, as it has the most processing distance to accomplish.  So some people lag drag more and others less yet some how everything is fluid and constant.  I think I’m confusing myself.

If a tall man’s reflexes are faster than a short man’s, in the extremeties, something mundane like catching an ice cube as it falls from the freezer then in a sense the tranmission of data, at least in some cases must be nearly instantaneous which violates the natural laws as described by physics.  At the same time, without regard to individual variances in reaction, a group interacts with a fluid seemlessness inplying that at some level each is processing at this near instantaneous rate which is even a more profond violation of natural scientific logic.  Maybe I’ve reached a dead end with How.  What about Why?

Why do we see or hear the world the way we do.  Is it possible that anticpation on how an event will sound or the way something will look affect what we actually see or hear.  While in therapy, once many years ago during a dark time, my therapist suggested an affirmation I should do every day.  I told him I would try at which point he asked me a most strange question, “Does the word try imply failure?”  I automatically said “No.”  But the notion that a phrase or even an honest statement of obvious fact could imply anything other then the denotative meaning of the words fascinated me.  It would be years before I would hear a phrase and spend enough hours observing a person before I would find a great example.  Meta’s son Red would often respond to questions about getting a job with the phrase, “Takes money to Make money.”  This seemes to be a truism, yet the reality is Red doesn’t really want to do anything towards his own support, even clean up after himself.  Thus the phrase is really a coded answer and when the code is properly translated it means, “I want you to take care of me,” or “No I don’t want to do any work,” or, maybe, “I can’t/won’t engage in mrenial labor,” or in the extreme, “I can’t get ahead so why bother.”  Most curiously the phrase is self reinforcing, meaning everytime it is said or thought it reinforces the view that working never helped anyone but the person you’re working for.  The reality becomes as certain as concrete, proven again and again, a fact that can not be challenged.  With a little thought any of us can think of examples within ourselves or others that reinforces a contrary position to a point that we or they no longer feel the use of trying.  If this pattern goes on long enough we forget the reason we first began useing the verbal device and it has become as real as a bullet.  Getting back to the word illusion.  In this context it describes foolishness but the word it self deals with the act of not only creating a illusion or delusion but also the ability to become illuded or delluded.  Do you thing a couch might be able to trick itself into believing its concious?  Its a riducolous question, you see it seems the only things that can be tricked into believing their concious are things that are concious.  You can negate this and it still holds, a conciuous being can also trick itself into unconciousness.

In the Absolute Sense

I remember some many years ago while reading an expansive collection of rather thin volumes on the subject of psychology, stumbling across a quote that has stuck with me ever since. I realize that I was somewhere between the ages of eleven and thirteen and the subject matter was mostly of a popular nature but for reasons that were beyond me at that time, my mind fastened onto those few words and have stayed me with to this day. I may not be repeating this quote exactly as it has been over thirty years since I laid mine eyes apon it and I have not seen it elsewhere nor have I been able to find it anywhere that I have looked. You are free to make of this fact what you will. “Physics and Psychology are Facets of the same Concept,” C.G. Jung.
I, like many other people whom have ever come to age in the world without ever feeling the need much less the interest to question what I was preceiving. If my eyes saw it, ears heard it, I tasted it, felt it or smelt it then it was beyond question real in the most absolute sense. The people around me, friends, family or other all seemed to agree with this conclusion, superfically in the very least, that if you preceived it then it was so, without a doubt. Much went on those years as I grew and discovered college, I learned much and faced many acedemic challenges but the greatest challenge of all came after college was done with me. It was the discovery that I happened to be a paranoid schizophrenic. It was as if some strange ancient spell had been cast and, practically overnight, my ever reliable eyes ears and such had been changed into tricksters full of deception. Now how could that be?
Chemical imbalance they would say. I had neither the interest nor the energy to fight the diagnosis.  Instead, over time, I found it increasingly curious how the difference between absolute, accurate senses and senses that lied to you all came down to a handful of neural transmitters and buffers (generally salts in solution).  Trying to grasp such a thing was overwhelming so instead I began to pay careful asttention to the little world in which I lived and the people that on occasion would pass through.  When we as people begin to ponder the notion that our ability to preceive the world with absolute accuracy is dependent on biochemistry then it becomes easier to understand the effects of things like narcotics, alcohol, industrial chemicals, tobacco and even mundane things like coffee, sugar, chocolate and certain foods or spices that, as the Suffi might say, “get your blood up.”  I even found myself wondering about the effects of Financial, Family, Health or other stressors on the shade through which we preceive the world.  Simply by watching I have found that even the simplest preceptions vary from individual to individual.  My wife, Meta, has a difficulty differentiating between  green and blue but whatever color I say I see, she, and it never fails, will correct me by instructing me in what color it actually is,  I see blue she sees turquoise, I say yellow she says tangerine and so on.  Eyewitnesses to a crime in common often see very different things.  It took time, but I finally reached the conclusion that my preceptual weirdnesses just interfered with my life more and fell further outside the range of culturally acceptable preceptual perculiarities.  In time all I became certain of was just how uncertain our flawless, absolute and perfect physical senses really were.

Remember the quote, “Physics and Psychology are facets of the same concept” C.G. Jung.  Facets encourages my mind to visualize a stone, a diamond for reasons I can’t immediately fathom.  Maybe its because of the way a large, finely cut diamond sparkles as if it has a light all of its own.  This has a great deal to do with the optical qualities of diamond.  Such a stone with high quality clarity, size and cut has an effect on light, two effects I believe, but I could be wrong and if so will happily admit it, which are called diffraction and rarefraction.  The light from the outside strikes the stone, if it comes in contact with any given facet at the right angle, perpendicular to the face or plane of the facet, then it will pass into the interior.  Once inside, the light will diffract slightly lending hints of color to the stone.  But only so much of the light that has reached the interior will easily pass back through into the greater world outside.  Whatever facet it comes in contact with it must be at the correct angle in order to pass through, otherwise it will bounce around the interior until the proper condition is met.  Thus the spectacle of a large clear diamond, sparklers as my mother was known to call them.  The process is easy to imagine and if you remove the stone from the light it will quickly dim as it has no light of its own.  Can you imagine such a thing, a diamond before you either set or loose.

If you can picture it in your own mind clearly, then try to imagine a light within the diamond.  Call it what you will, soul, mind, spirit, current, god energy, vibration or conciousness.  Also imagine that light comes from the greater world outside the stone as well.  The simple principles we illustrated above still apply.  So put directly, what the being inside the stone preceives is in part some of its own light reflected back at it and some of the light from the greater outside.  It can not tell which is which giving its reality a seemless fluidity.  Nor is the entity within aware of all the light that fills its tiny world, in reality only a tiny portion of said light fills its thoughts and awareness.  Finally, adding to the complexity of the situation, each facet of the stone respresents a school of thought, academic discipline, cultural or spiritual prespective.  It seems our little friend lives in a surprizingly complicated world that he or she is only slightly aware of, maybe in the future we could consider giving the little critter a break because after all, he or she is we.