I think people make sweeping generalizations and become careless when they feel small and vulnerable, so I am not sure Trump means everything he says. This has been a solid impression I have had from the start. A lot of this is likely posturing and ‘fear-allayment’ for those he courts; he knows a large majority of his supporters want exclusive, tough, conservative solutions and he deduced they won’t support him if he softens up. He also knows the average American is a “tough noogies” kind of person: we say “do what ya gotta do.” We walk past the homeless and say “I gotta take care of mine” and “get a job.” These are conservative points of view. We also do not show any shame for Vietnam, Afghanistan or Iraq. (I would like to add Greece, Iran, Latin America, but what Americans even know we transgressed in these places?) Look at the thousands we kill with drones, dwarfing the casualties killed in 9/11. So, what’s my point? No one should be shocked that Trump supporters — the ones who have to die in our wars — are endured to his draconian pronouncements. This is our culture of guns, discrimination and country cognitively dissonant music.
Is it just me or is it difficult talking to many women — especially those with whom we have some kind of relationship in family or love? In such situations it is as if reason, listening and personal interest (ours) do not count as they would in the outside world.
This is only a sample conversation, but it’s indicative of the kind of phenomena I have experienced talking mostly with women — more than with men– on many occasions.
My Mother: The coffee machine is broken.
I: Can we get it fixed?
My Mother: It doesn’t heat up.
I: Yes, I see.
My Mother: Use the Kurig.
I: Thanks, Ma, but as you know, I don’t like coffee that’s been filtered through boiling plastic. (Thus my behavior in using the Japanese tea strainer to filter the coffee coming out of the French Press — rather than letting it go through the plastic grill on top.)
My Mother: Just don’t go through all of them; they’re expensive.
I: I’ll just get some out; I haven’t been out all day. ( I go to the other room.)
My Mother: Here’s your coffee. (Bringing it into the room where I am writing this post; and of course, it was made with the Kurig).
TO COME: “Why didn’t you ask if you didn’t know you were unsure?”
I would like you to let me share with you just one or two points about a book I’m reading, by Bertrand Russell.
Russell was a British philosopher writing the book I am reading at a time when things Christians don’t believe today were well-believed or recently let go of by them. That is a monumentally enormous point.
What Russell does–amongst other things–is make you realize that the arguments used a long time ago to prove God, etc., have changed, meaning (as we know) that what is acceptable about God and religion has changed due to intellect; this has the surreptitious effect of showing we make God, not the other way around. That is not his point–or at least wasn’t where I am in the book, right now, but I realized from yet another angle of approach that it’s our story, not His–though Russell doesn’t say that, per se. It’s consequential and deductible from the reading. He suggests it, or you glean it reading his debunking of old standard arguments for the proof of a god.
Russell isn’t heavy-handed. He does what great philosopher do–like some comedians: he illustrates tracts of reasoning based on observations you realize should be plain to all of us. He gives you “Ah ha!” moments. You find yourself saying, ‘a child could see that; why didn’t I think of it?’
He is funny. He goes into “God is good.” That’s hilarious. But he doesn’t approach it as people often do, with a litany of disasters. He goes into it sort of like ‘good as opposed to what–by what other cause’s standard?’
That’s what I love about philosophers. Like comedians, they are so plainly and obviously insightful where others are stark raving blind that they can deconstruct the arguments “stupid” people take for granted, for lack of looking and caring– either because they wouldn’t even know to look or because they are afraid to.
The important aspect about philosophers and scientists is this: they approach their subjects out of honest and sincere naivte and innocence in a spirit if good nature. The fact that they come to conclusions religious people don’t like is a fact about the religious people, not about they who are the challendging philosophers and scientists; they don’t set out to hurt anyone or to aggrandize their situations, but rather their deeds indicate they are the epitome of lives utilizing free speech and free thought–to better the world and our misunderstanding of it.
These are some of the topics Russell covers on the existence of a god:
The First Cause Arguement
The Natural Law Arguement
The Arguement from Design
The Moral Arguements for Deity
The Arguement for The Remedying of Justice
The Character of Christ
Defects in Christ’s Teaching
Keep in mind this book was written in 1927. That fact stands to illuminate the debate raging now among prominant American, European and Muslim-American and Muslim-European intellectuals.
I first read Russell when I was nineteen. I am glad to be reading him, again. You should be enjoying this amazing thinker, too. His work is rather essential:
‘Why I Am Not A Christian’ by Bertrand Russell could do you and the world a lot of good, because you matter. That’s why he wrote it.
All around the world, in traditional cultures, female genital mutilation is a violent, terrifying, painful and medically problematic issue. Traditionally, if you were not cut, you could not be married. In some places this is changing as human rights and modern modes of fairness, compassion and reason seep into formerly tradition-run societies–and in this context, tradition equates to religious leadership, clerics, tribal chiefs, and male dominance.
The Fingers of Control And Marriage
I am not an expert on this issue, however, I can say that there are fingers of the concern that brought FGM to the world in many communities of the non-traditional (or still semi-traditional) world. Those fingers belong to long arms that connect to still male-male-dominated or tradition laden semi-male-dominated cultures where ethnicity and DNA expression (read “race”) are of paramount importance and status is right up there with that primitive concern. In such places, fathers–and mothers, perhaps to a lesser degree–insist their daughters–and sons–marry inside the ethnicity, the religion and the nation. I have seen and heard of this multiple times in my travels, and experienced this kind of traditional prejudice first hand. However, where FGM is concerned, it is an issue of reducing a girl’s and a woman’s amorous desires, and this is what I want to talk about. I will make a tacit mention of the issue of male genital mutilation, too–but as men have a more arguably superfluous protrusion of skin to be removed–beyond the human rights and sensitivity issues inherent–it is not as invasive or deleterious a procedure as that performed on women.
Teaching Love Instead of Marginalizing It
In my opinion, a lot of the traditional minds in the religious parts of the world could be relaxed and their concerns about promiscuity alayed if a practice of love were taught–even here, in the West–especially here.
Love is left to the realm of sex, “fantasy romance,” luxury and poetry–to tales of adventure in lwgend and in Hollywood, and that is, in my opinion, because it was taught that way in ancient religions.
Love (or mating–insofar as it is or was a part of marriage, by some association), has also been left to the realm of fiat, on the part of parents, clerics and royalty. In other words, mates have been–and still are–chosen by authority other than that which should choose mates: love. This still happens jn most of the Muslim world, in India and in parts of Asia–most notably in South Korea, where it is becoming less and less common but is still done–not so much with parents making the outright choice, but in their having the prerogative to pressure their adult children into “Seon” meetings of blind dating–and in refusing some suitors and choosing others.
Religion And The Love
In the Bible there is a passage that warns that the desires of the heart will lead one astray; this is terrible nonsense, and it is there because in ancient times–when male dominance protected bloodlines, fortunes, property and power–love could not be allowed to get in the way–and because humanity seems to have had a very primitively developed concept of what I call “the precepts of love,” which when understood and developed can foster very strong bonds of physical, emotional and honor-bound attraction, dedication and sustainable romantic states of mind–such that a need to curb promiscuity can be made to be almost non-existent; but this depends on virtually sanctifying love, freedom and personal chpice, not curtailing these virtues. However, traditional cultures have a long historical history of not liking freedom of choice.
Finally, and perhaps most succinctly, that passage was in the Bible (the Torah or Talmud), because love was not truly respected or understood as both a bonding force in human relations that renders chastity rules virtually unnecessary, and because love was largely separated from the desire of sex, which was demonized; we continue to do both, today today: “it was just sex.”
The desire for sex is actually the beginning of what can be love, but society teaches us not to honor that, because– ‘mommy and daddy (and traditionally, king, queen, prince and princess; cleric, bishop and Pope) don’t want you to love this one or that one or to love at all, right now; love is for later….’ This is the beginning of the parental and societal guidance toward the habit of “promiscuity” and why we have FGM and parental meddling in nature.
Anderson Cooper on 60 Minutes did an expose, tonight, about surgeons and hospital staff wearing faulty gowns from Kimberly Clarke–which transmitted disease into the gowns and made doctors and other patients sick. After all we have seen in business–from defective engineering in cars to drugs that kill people to spacecraft that explode in the atmosphere to factory farms and cancer-causing growth hormones in live-stock, I am convinced that anything coming from a private company that can affect our health should have to pass the snuff of an administration with NASA-like perfection and priorities.
This is a response to a letter I received at All Experts.com, where I counsel people afrom round the world on their issues in relationships–which in my opinion all boil down to one’s understanding of love as a practice, which I write about; it is not spychoanalysis or therapy, so I am not delving into those methods of helping people. I am answering questions taken at face value and applying my Precepts of Love Philosophy®.
I left out salutations and introductory writing because (1.), I find that useful, sometimes–to answer the sense of immediacy I suspect the writer feels and to dispense with pleasnatries he or she is likely to skip over anyway (like when you are reading an article and you skip over the first paragraph wherein the writer wants to prove to agents that he can write, se he or she wastes your time with poetic verse instead of telling you as soon as possible about the details of why a jihadist blew up a restroom in your town. You know the type of writing I mean:
Man Destroys Mayberry Bathroom
It was a beautiful spring morning…
To which I always respond, in my mind, ‘Buddy, you’re confusing your day job with your sabatical and it’s assinine.’
(2.) My responses at All Experts.com have a set signature that is time-consuming enough and polite enough.
Now that I have wasted your time, let’s jump in:
On the one hand, how do you know it will end badly if you tell her you like her? On the other hsnd, maybe you feel that way because your unconscious mind (some say “intuition”) is telling you it’s not that kind of relationship (yet)? So, what kind of relationship is it; is it “the same kind” of relationahip to her as it is to you? People rarely ask that, or they don’t ask that enough. Ask that: what kind of relationship is this; what stage are we at. Who is she? Who am I? What are we to each other? Am I willing to move slowly and get to know this person, her family, her language and her culture–developing deep understanding and a culture of our own? These are the foundations of love. A lot of people imagine the relationship they think they are in while they are actually in another kind of relationship.
Nature works by symbiotic interplay and mutaually beneficial interdependent players. It doesn’t work by force.
Then there is another way of looking at this: just enjoy the moments with her without milestones such as tellng her you like her in serious, a dramatic way; she knows you like her. She likes you. That’s a given–considering what’s happening. So, if you want to follow this train of thought and develop a tack for it, be natural, but also be smart. Let it unfold without labels for a while.
Telling her in a pivotal, dramatic or serious way might be considered to just say, ‘I wanna get serious.’ Is that necesary? Is that helpful (now, if ever)? Will it endear her or make her point of view change (now, or ever)?
In yet another mode of thinking and tack, be strong and confident and don’t imagine what she will say or do (that is fantasy, based on your very little experience with this person); or don’t think that she will pull away and it “will end badly.” Why would that be bad–if she pulled away? She might be a crazy person, once you get to know her, or she might be very immature and on her best beahvior, these days–or she might be methodical, intelligent and prone to taking her time; so she pulls away and comes back stronger. You actually don’t even know her or her world–so, sadly, it could be a good thing!
What if you say you like her in a fun way? But, again, why not just show her?
As far as her being too far away, that will only matter if you two do not grow in love for each other (“fall in love”). In true love, distance doesn’t matter.
Please consider donating to this cause of helping you by clicking the Donate button.”
My letters of response to petitions for help end with a suggestion that the client let me know how he or she feels and inform himnornher that he or she can write me with further questions.
I have had numerous enough relationships in my life to know that a lot more than live is going on and a lot of love is lost in the process. The main element in love is knowing it is a practice that began with being free to appreciate and grow with that which you are drawn to; this fosters live in yourself (not others indulging and supporting and controling you).
What do you think? I’d like to know.
People who adhere to deffective interpretations of dogma at the expense of good sense and neighborly behavior, fairness and survival are called crazy for a reason: they are fanatics and thus dangerous. On a deserted island peopled by castaways, they would have no power delegated to them or have that power taken away from them. They would be separated from the group and ignored–or killed, sadly–but for the sake of the virtues I mentioned above–for the children and the benefit of all; only in a corrupt society can they actually run things; and only in a delusional and corrupt society can that continue for very long.
© Carl 卍道 Atteniese 2016, All Rights Reserved.
You are a hero
You now are no longer
One of the most radioactive people
You now are cleansing
Instead of toxifying
You now are not a threat
To the global environment
Simply because of your body
And because of unnecessary emissions
You are in defiance
Of the most insidiously evil
And stupidly legal
Homocidal and DNA-destroying
And because of you
Others can breathe as they should
A little more
On a Facebook page dedicated to Buddhism for expatriates in South Korea:
I like most of what you said, however, there is one relative flaw, and that is in the idea that the most evil will change and become a better person when you change inside; I actually fully understand what you mean, and there is an across-the-board strong element of truth here that deals with perception and how we deal with others, adversity and conflict or challenges–but, there are people so ignorantly inculcated and abused–say those in ISIS, who won’t change in any practical time-frame relevant to your immediate dilemma with them; on this particular point I have run the gamut of thought, all the way to abandoning where ever they actually are–but if you look on my page and find the link to a recent ISIS magazine article, you will see that they do not attack us first and foremost over politics or past transgressions; they say, themselves, they attack us because they want caliphate and because we do not accept the supreme laws of Al ‘ah.
Yes, a Zen mind will create the personal and state policies necessary to reduce or eliminate anger and involvement with entities like ISIS, but in particular, ISIS and groups like it will seek you out to conquer you, anyway.
Oh for shame and sadness
And even for his own
Will sell their lives down river
Blind to his evil tome
For he tells straight what he will do
But the stupid aren’t scared
So Americans ignorant to the truth
Will be the last ones spared