Musings

As humans, we tend to entrench our minds in rules and tribalism.  And yet ambiguity/chaos rears up again and again, forcing us to make an age-old decision:  do we stay in the trenches, knowing we’ll be steadily beaten down by our own stubbornness?  Or do we attempt a charge, even though it entails the discomfort of evidence-based scrutiny?  

I think the proper way to navigate this dilemma is to focus on effectiveness within ethical boundaries (which is subjective, and requires unflinching self-honesty to know).  This eliminates all labels, all ideals, all conflict between old methods and new.  It is simply striving to become a pure reflection of evidence-based harmony, while doing the best you can for others and seeking to do as little collective harm as possible.

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11 thoughts on “Musings

  1. Kindness, compassion, and love are core Buddhist values/standards. Like everything human, subjectivity is in your DNA. As a hard core original Star Trek fan, I always saw Mr. Spock as blind to emotion and intuition. He was cast as purely evidence-based. For me, life without love is fruitless; self-love, family love, intimate love, all have myriad emotional elements that must be interpreted in the framework of the people and cultural laws.

    I like the trench metaphor, but isn’t everything already you seek in the trenches unseen? What I read in your short essay is more of an awakening, not a rule book: a transformation, not a series of changes. I do not have the answers to other peoples lives, they do. Most are trapped by the “story” they create with others. “Everything goes wrong for me.” “They won’t let me.” “I must prevail.” These beliefs limit and direct them to make their story true. They must choose a new story that makes their lives joyous. “I am an honest, open, courageous man.” is the “possibility” one could declare, and start being that way right now, 100%, and they must convince the people in their lives that this is who he is. Compare this transformation to “change” which says, “I want to be honest, open, and courageous.” This is followed by making small adjustments to how they are now, usually not accepted by the people in their lives.

    Anyway, you got me going, but I am not going to write your blog for you, Tom Sawyer style;)

    Liked by 1 person

    • As far as other peoples’ problems, if I see them repeat the same predictable pattern, I just treat them if they have no free will.
      I treat them as kindly as possible, as if they are helpless, and adjust for their mistakes. Because from what I’ve seen, unless someone undergoes the hero’s journey (I like to call it Problem Solver’s Journey) and starts asking the difficult question “What is wrong with ME that is holding me back?” then they just act out their dogma. All I can do is go by the evidence in front of me, and psychologically and historically, it seems that discipline gives me a chance, critical thinking improves my odds, and it also lets me know when I’ve done all I can, and enjoy what I have. The rest—positive thinking, meditation, etc. etc.—are what I consider steroids, in that if you work out and watch your diet (discipline and critical thinking) steroids can help or change the game. But if not…then no. I’m not sure about transformation or change; I simply try and take things instance by instance, and first make sure an action is within my bounds of ethics (so I can sleep at night in the long run) and that it is as effective as it can be. This seems to cut through dogma and duality.

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