December 23, 2009 by mlq3
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See my previous entries, Platforms and Platform time begins November 30.
In chronological order, the platforms thus far, are the following.
Manolo Quezon is a gem. He has compiled all published platforms of Presidential Candidates to the 2010 National Elections of the Philippines.
At the very least, free will is a useful illusion, leading us to be more prosocial and ethical. Because even if we are just “a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules,” we’re a vast assembly that feels like so much more. William James, as usual, said it best: “My first act of free will shall be to believe in free will.”
The quoted blog post links to three studies on free will that is very interesting and you would do well to read (at least the original blog post and if that wasn’t enough for you the linked studies.) I generally believe in living rationally and the importance of truth in everything, but if for some people the truth is a little too hard, maybe for some delusion would be okay!!!!
A call to bring the world together…
The principle of compassion lies at the heart of all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions, calling us always to treat all others as we wish to be treated ourselves. Compassion impels us to work tirelessly to alleviate the suffering of our fellow creatures, to dethrone ourselves from the centre of our world and put another there, and to honour the inviolable sanctity of every single human being, treating everybody, without exception, with absolute justice, equity and respect.
It is also necessary in both public and private life to refrain consistently and empathically from inflicting pain. To act or speak violently out of spite, chauvinism, or self-interest, to impoverish, exploit or deny basic rights to anybody, and to incite hatred by denigrating others—even our enemies—is a denial of our common humanity. We acknowledge that we have failed to live compassionately and that some have even increased the sum of human misery in the name of religion.
We therefore call upon all men and women ~ to restore compassion to the centre of morality and religion ~ to return to the ancient principle that any interpretation of scripture that breeds violence, hatred or disdain is illegitimate ~ to ensure that youth are given accurate and respectful information about other traditions, religions and cultures ~ to encourage a positive appreciation of cultural and religious diversity ~ to cultivate an informed empathy with the suffering of all human beings—even those regarded as enemies.
We urgently need to make compassion a clear, luminous and dynamic force in our polarized world. Rooted in a principled determination to transcend selfishness, compassion can break down political, dogmatic, ideological and religious boundaries. Born of our deep interdependence, compassion is essential to human relationships and to a fulfilled humanity. It is the path to enlightenment, and indispensible to the creation of a just economy and a peaceful global community.
I couldn’t agree more. People are just so fucking annoyed with two bit, multi faced interactions that it is personally dragging to interact with people. I remember this scene from “The Office” probably season4. Where Kelly kapoor and Darryl from the warehouse fights and kelly says. “I don’t understand him who says exactly what he means!” can’t help but feel this when talking to people I interact with hesistantly. What I mean is I tend to hang with simple people , people like darryl. Call shit on me when I am shitting them, tear me a new one when I am getting too arrogant and all in all telling me when; Incidentally If i had only listened to them a couple of weeks ago, I probably would not be depressed and extremely fragile right now. I am like a tinderbox ready to explode any second. Well to sum up, try to minimize the fog, speak simply and clearly, tell it to me straight and we will get along fine! In some ways I don’t like erecting walls that separate , but this is very important to me. Enough of the lies, enough of the deception tell it straight!
Which means that even if you have a really good reason, no, you can’t call me on the phone. Which means that even if it’s really important, no, I’m not going to read the instructions. Which means that god forbid you try to email me something I didn’t ask for… you’re trashed. It’s so fashionable to be skeptical now that no one believes you if you attempt to do something for the right reasons.
Selfish short-sighted marketers ruined it for all of us. The only way out, I think, is for a few marketers to so overwhelm the market with long-term, generous marketing that we have no choice but to start paying attention again.
We live in a culture of self absorption and in this world were we are ever connected to Die Alone is a great tragedy. I try to see the silver lining, I imagine that the dead man who wore pajamas was someone like miyamoto musashi, self recluse for purposes of enlightenment, but this is just me not wanting to see what I fear maybe the way I may go.
Then I thought of the dead man in his pajamas, of solitude so utter and abysmal that for twenty years nobody in this whole wide world had realized that he had simply disappeared without leaving a trace. And my conclusion is that worse than feeling hunger and thirst, worse than being jobless, suffering for love, in despair over some defeat – worse than all this is to feel that nobody, absolutely nobody in this world, cares for us.
Let us at this moment say a quiet prayer for this man and let us offer him our thanks for making us reflect on how important our friends are.
I come from a very religous family , I have friends from both spectrum of religousity /belief . What I find that is grating me personally is that need by a lot of people to assert their correctness by tearing the other guy a new one. I used to feel that need when I was younger , but with age comes nonchalance, you just realize that people live within their own worlds and the true miracle is that any group of people exists as a group.
What helped me get to this is the realization that although “Good Ideas Need To Be Nurtured, They Don’t Need Anyone Trying To Shove Them In Anybody’s Throat”.
Although, based on what little I pretend to understand of the mathematics of evolution, the goodness/fitness of an attribute over that of the norm does not mean it would be carried over in successive generations, it depends on how well it helps the species survive. Which I interpret to mean in the case of ideas : How right an idea is does not mean that an idea would survive, it is how well an idea gives rise to other people believing in the idea. In some ways what my analysis is pointing me towards the feeling that their strategy is counter productive; as I believe the quoted article is saying.
With religion, I think atheists have the same dissonance going on. If they really think the world would be better off without religion, they shouldn’t hate religion and call believers fools. Any successful new belief system must appreciate the beauty of what it’s replacing and strive for backwards-compatibility. If Matthew 1:1-16 hadn’t explained how Jesus’ lineage fulfills the prophecy in Isaiah 1:1-5, it wouldn’t have gotten where it is today.
So I put it to declared atheists– the ones who fly the flag about it, not the ones who are quiet or closeted: Do you think that most of humanity is A) hopeless and doomed to kill each other because of their stupid religious beliefs, or B) capable of coming to and benefiting from your views?
I think closeted atheists who participate in other religious activities are the future of atheism. They know that prayer feels good without a needing brain scientist to tell them, and they know you don’t need God to want to feed the hungry, heal the sick, and provide homes for the orphaned. What if they simply stopped reciting the words that they didn’t agree with during religious services, without calling attention to it? In many places I don’t think they would be kicked out or turned upon and beaten just for that.
I suspect there might not be. One reason why I think I’m happier now than when I was younger (despite the U-shape in happiness over the life cycle) is precisely that I’ve stopped giving a damn what anyone thinks about me. If you care about your reputation, you end up worrying about things you can’t easily control. You become like Heather Mills, ranting hysterically about the press.
This is pretty much the exact opposite of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s recipe for happiness – flow. He says we maximize happiness when we lose ourselves in an activity – playing music or sport say – when we are in control, and yet oblivious to our own ego.
Happiness is that thing that I yearn for and actually try to find. I haven’t but all good things take time. What am I trying to do to find happiness? Here are some:
-Trying out new thing. This includes hobbies etc. I am trying to skew towards activities that do.
-Connecting with people. Trying to interact with people and increase my circle of friends. This also include improving connections with my friends now.
-Connecting with your family. We tend to take our parent and siblings for granted. I try to smooth things over and try to maximize my time spent with my parents.
-Self Improvement. A most overused word but its overused for a reason you are never perfect. What you can be is a person that is totally comfortable with yourself! The best way (for me) to be comfortable with yourself is to face the harsh realities of life and your rough edges head on. This means being honest to yourself with the things taht are painful for you, the things that irk you, things that give you joy, the activities that gives you a lasting joy. The good thing about being honest to yourself is that when you do it often enough it becomes a habit thatbrings you closer