Saturday, August 27, 2016

Is Technology Always Bad?

I've recently been sharing a presentation with friends and one of the slides in it is this -


What I say in this slide should come as no surprise for long-time readers of this blog. I have argued for a number of years that technology is not what it appears to be on the surface, that it is always open to question and always anti-nature. One of my earliest blog posts exhorts the reader to question technology.

Following the presentation, a friend of mine asked me a question by email:

"Now you've got me thinking if I can make some exceptions to the premise that all technology is anti-nature and therefore bad. I am skeptical of the words always and never. How abut a flashlight that I pump up with my hand or a bicycle powered by my legs. Do you consider those technologies as bad inventions?"

Here is my response to her:

It depends on the perspective we take. From the perspective of modern humans, both the flashlight and bicycle are benign inventions that help us in very practical terms. It is hard to imagine life without them. But from Mother Earth's perspective, from nature's perspective, they are both products of a long journey of separation from nature. By the time we invented the light bulb, the industrial revolution was well underway. The mass produced light bulb wouldn't have been possible without massive centralization of power and resources, mass schooling and all the other trends that have beset civilization, which we now know have been indicators of separation from nature. A modern flashlight requires plastic which is derived from petroleum, so we're really talking about an entire infrastructure that needed to be there to give us the flashlight. We don't get this fuller picture if we look at the flashlight in isolation.

Now, I am not at all arguing that we give up our flashlights and bicycles. My work is not about changing people's behavior but to only examine the current situation and find out how we got here. To the extent that I would like to see people change their behavior, it is only to see them prepare for the coming times. And in this process, I find that all our modern conveniences, even the smallest ones like plumbing and flush toilets, are, in the final analysis, anti-nature because of what it takes to make those at a mass scale. I might sound like a hypocrite when I use the Internet and deride technology at the same time. But that's a logical fallacy called Tu Quoque :) It's like preventing a literature major from criticizing the English language because they are using the very English language to do so.

I realize this argument is a bit philosophical at this point. For me to say a flashlight is anti-nature and that there are no exceptions to "technology is always bad" requires me to define what exactly technology means. Does making fire count as technology? Does using a tool to crack open a nut count as technology? Does language count as technology? My basic understanding of what technology is this - anything that we use to overcome our natural limitations. And it's a gray area even then. If we use a sharp stone to crack open a nut, it could be argued that it's technology because we can't otherwise do it with our nature-given hands. But seeing in the dark is a high degree removed from using a stone to crack a nut, or learning how to speak sentences. And it makes sense that the flashlight, or the light bulb emerged at the tail end of our civilization, a mere 150-200 years ago, Isn't that what a flashlight gives us? An ability to see in the dark? I'm a night owl and I should know :)

For almost 200,000 years, our ancestors lived just as happily, if not more so, without needing to see in the dark, without flashlights. And without bicycles. To me, it's as simple as this - we can have our modern conveniences but we will then have to face extinction sooner or later. It's mathematically and physically impossible to have the former without the latter. It's simply a question of time. Extinction is inevitable when we continue the journey of separation from nature. The system, the societal organization, the political economy and the culture that gives rise to the flashlight also gives rise to the nuclear bomb. It's not possible to have one without the other because underneath both of them is the basic reality of deviant behavior, a lack of respect for nature and other earthlings and a culture that looks down upon tradition and age-old wisdom. This journey of separation has been some 10,000 years in the making, if not longer, and we're in the last phase, it seems. A phase where we are given the means and the resources (thanks to the Internet, libraries, etc.) to take a real long and deep look at just how we got ourselves into such dire existential crises as climate change and nuclear war. When we take this opportunity to empathize with the primordial humans that walked on the Earth long long ago, we'd see that we live in a time warp, an era of make-believe. What an era! And a rather short one at that.

I enjoy spirited debates like this one. Hope you don't take anything here personally. I like making my point passionately :) Thank you for the question and for giving me this chance to elucidate!


There's been plenty of work done by critics of Technology such as Jacques Ellul, Ivan Illich, Lewis Mumford and John Zerzan. These are just a handful of people who have seen Technology in the larger context of how it impacts society and culture as well as where it leads us and the planet ultimately.

More here at the Wikipedia page "Critique of technology".

We are all familiar with Technology's "end points". These are the means by which we interact with the technological infrastructure we have today. The smart phone, for example, is one such end point. A smart phone is a fine example of our modern technological prowess but it hardly causes us to think of the cell phone tower it is communicating with, the vast network of antennas and towers all over the world, and the satellites in orbit and the under-sea fiber optic cables that connect them all up. And all that is only part of the infrastructure that's needed to enable a single voice call. There are many more components (computers, switches, etc.) not to mention the vast and complex electric grid that powers it all. Picking up a smart phone and making a call hardly invokes this set up in our mind. So the smart phone ends up being just one way of interacting with a highly complex global technological infrastructure. The convenience of using a smart phone masks the true impact of such monstrosity of an infrastructure on the sustainability and even viability of life on the planet as we know it.

This is how we go about connecting the dots. Or not!

152 comments:

  1. Here's my four part discourse on your technology topic Satish. Read all four parts, if you dare.

    To begin, consider this cute video. A computer in 1965, writing a song live on TV.

    Watch Video

    ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4Neivqp2K4 )

    Anecdotal experience time.

    The 'Bill Gates' boy in the video is Raymond Kurzweil, the inventor and name behind Kurzweil electronic pianos. He was the first person to digitally synthesize a convincing piano sound, and went on to sell some of the first electronic pianos. Before I rant about the destructiveness of this technology, let me comment about Kurzweil's 1965 appearance on that television show. His computer did not write a song that day ... it wrote some arbitrary random and nonsensical dissonance, which that clip 'snipped' out so you couldn't hear how terrible Kurzweil's randomly generated music actually was. The panel in the game was pretty clued in that some strange method had been used to compose the song ... because it wasn't a very pleasing song. The video kindly cuts that part out for us.

    Human musical composition is a complex merging of aural traits, including random discoveries, blending things together with knowledge about harmonic qualities and the affects they produce on the human psyche. Then there are techniques like repetition ... peppered with pleasing harmonic and rhythmic variations ... called tension and release. All of these nuances, as sounds, eventually all get assessed in the ears of the composer before they ever even get the green light into the final composition. Much of music is specifically subjective to a human.

    It's very important to realize that the intellectual dissection of music into ideas came AFTER music had already existed for millennia. Our rote 'knowledge' about music, including the notes on the scales we invented to try and 'describe it' ... are all just an incomplete afterthought to the music, and are all quite a bit less than a 'full' description of what digestible music is all made up of. Simply programming the rules of music into a machine, to date, fails to reproduce it's own music.

    No, Kurzweil's random number generator did not write a song ... it wrote nonsense (and that's why the people in the video knew something weird was going on there.) But to a dude who mistakenly thinks that all those notes, and the simple mechanical act of pointing to any note on a piano and then striking that note ... if a person thinks that's all that constitutes music, well then I guess he'd turn out to be like Kurzweil, and he would be falling for the false equivalency fallacy.

    His computer did not compose music ... it composed unpleasing musical nonsense. It's similar to your cat walking on your piano at home ... while you play a pleasing arpeggio underneath of your cat's random melody. Brian Eno would love it ... but it's pretty random. You get a lot of disinterest in your ears while you search for something musically sensible to grasp onto. It doesn't please. It misses the things that dependable musicians are able to produce on their mastered instruments constistently, be that alone or as a group.

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    1. Kurzweil eventually did create a keyboard company, and he actually invented one of the first convincing digital piano emulators (copying the sound of a real piano and reproducing it digitally.) I've played a few his electric pianos, but have never owned a Kurzweil piano myself. A buddy of mine has a Kurzweil synth, they're actually a pretty popular keyboard manufacturer among musicians.

      Kurzweil also went on to invent music sequencing devices ... which could play music on his synthesizers after you programmed into them whatever notes you wanted them to play. (In the music industry this is known as 'sequencing' ... it's how a lot of music today's is actually played ... both in the studio and even also live.) Unfortunately ... a lot of music we here today isn't even being played by a human anymore.

      The trouble with these systems (sequencers), is that they still require a human to compose the music for them, because the computer can never have the subjective reality equivalent to a human with which to judge and fine tune the song while it's being composed ... using ears and feelings as the final judge ... over and above any technical rules that may have been employed while composing a piece of music.

      Kurzweil eventually abandoned getting a computer to compose a decent song, obviously ... duh. However, along the way he managed to invent a computer that would now play any song back to you after you programmed that song into it ... an automated instrument. He just removed the musician ... and the music industry got "the sequencer." What a nightmare that's been for our musical world. Think of drum machines.

      As a professional drummer from the old days, my vocation for the first thirty years of my life was as a gigging drummer. I can tell you that when drum machines automated me out of my livelihood and left me unemployed in the late 1980's ... it really pissed me off. That's what swept through my area during that era ... musical 'duos' (two musician bands + drum machines + bass/keys/synths ... all programmed up on a Kurzweil like keyboard sequencer.) It absolutely overran the music community. Soon, clubs added extra tables and reduced the stage sizes in all the music halls, because you didn't need a drummer or bass player anymore ... that was all being programmed now and automated.

      It killed the economics and dynamics of a whole portion of the live music and club scene. It put a lot of people out of musical work in a short period of time ... and worse, in a specific demographic of instrument players too, instruments still vital to the 'sounds' created for modern music ... music we all still depend on and take for granted today.

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    2. Needless to say, these sequencers ruptured the fabric of the ages old traditional music scene, a culture which had evolved over centuries and even longer. It was a killer. What people don't realize is, in the short term, it all seemed to work. But in the long term, what happened is that eventually nobody played or took up drums or bass very often anymore ... along with a myriad of other synthesized instruments thanks to Kurzweil and others like him. Over a few generations, the craft of these specific instruments disappears ... bye, bye Stradivarius. We eventually lose the skill from the gene pool for all of those crafts. No more drummers, no more bass players, no more string players, or horn players, or even synth and organ and keyboard players ... BECAUSE THEY WERE ALL AUTOMATED OUT OF THEIR PURSUITS BY KURZWEIL.

      Once you lose those players completely ... how is it then that you are going to compose music anymore eventually? Music is composed by people who become inspired when they physically play it ! After automation, we lose a ton of incentive for people to pick up and learn to master a whole plethora of instruments. That's what's really happened to music over the past many decades. Now the computer plays it, and it's been programmed up to play (only) all the songs of yesteryear, because it can't create music, it can only reproduce music ( and somewhat stiffly.)

      So, a problem is ... there will be no more evolution of actual material for these computers to play eventually. Remember? The computer can't write it ... and fewer and fewer people play instruments anymore in our world because now the computer just plays it for us anyway... and so the knowledge of how to create music is now slowly being eliminated from being a common experience. Eventually, the knowledge will exit the gene pool. We used to almost ALL play music, going way, way, way back. It's why it's so intrinsic to our existence. Now we've almost completely outsourced it.

      Don't even get me started on how the internet and cloud computing has killed music even further in recent years. And don't buy into the cultural hype about bad music companies and how the internet was a revolution either ... it wasn't. We needed a recording industry infrastructure, a business, an industry... and the internet killed it. Of course, itunes and spotify certainly got rich recently as they gutted music like corporate raiders without a conscience (or, it seems, any awareness ... they seem to believe their own bullshit I think.)

      Technology seems to often be very destructive. It's the garden of eden fable I suppose; the apple of knowledge paradox in a nutshell.

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    3. One last note: those expensive music computers and all that synth gear you see in the music stores? Musicians can rarely afford very much of that gear. The people who fund that economy are mostly rich kids who stuff that gear away in their bedrooms ... they don't (and usually can't) even play the instruments. But they buy them and support the economy of their creation ... real actual musicians certainly can't afford all that fancy gear. lol.

      It's all such a mistaken choice we make ... to always think we need something 'better', instead of accepting 'now' as perfection already. And to think it's all just a quirk of thought too, it's sad. Kurzweil just wanted attention for his computing mind, his inventions were just random nonsense ... especially his music sequencers. Fuck drum machines. Like we see with the Bill Gates appeal ... I think people are just overly fascinated with (and grossly over estimate the value of) computers and computing.

      I don't own an Orwellian phone either, by the way.

      In summary, I know people come up with arguments like: but what about the invention of a Stradivarius violin, was that not also a technology, one that no doubt affected the trajectory of human music in some way? Well to that I say yes. But consider this: the Stradivarius made music greater ... in both music's social and musical aspects, as well as contributed positively to composition over the centuries since it's 'invention.'

      Well, here's the rub: you can't make the same argument for music computing since 1965. Capitalism, and it's extremely narrow considerations and interests, has allowed computers to completely decimate the arts ... to the point now of even sometimes socially discouraging it's serious undertaking. That's a pretty toxic outcome. Computers were certainly no Stradivarius. The implications turned out to have run incredibly deep, in several negative ways, and a lot of cultural damage was accumulated over a very short period of time. Economically, the life force ($$) accumulated entirely at the electronics manufacturers level, and the silicon valley itunes-spotify level ... and now they've exclusively siphoned out almost the entire financial stream from what had recently been a cultural human thing for eons ... the bohemian musician's life.

      Computing has proven to be toxic technology on both the music and the 'musician' frontiers. Combined with capitalism, it's killing a part of our culture ... not providing any vehicle for it. It's turning out to be toxic to the 'real world' of actual performed live music on actual mastered instruments. It's the 'human element'' that makes music what it is. Kurzweil's bad music in 1965 even proved it.

      LWA ... musician against drum machines and programmed music.

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    4. So nice to see you back, Satish. Haven't quite finished your piece, but will do so soon.

      ----------

      "Computing has proven to be toxic technology on both the music and the 'musician' frontiers. Combined with capitalism, it's killing a part of our culture ... not providing any vehicle for it. It's turning out to be toxic to the 'real world' of actual performed live music on actual mastered instruments. It's the 'human element'' that makes music what it is. Kurzweil's bad music in 1965 even proved it."

      And I feel great anxiety when I think about my neighbor's relative non reliance on technology. He got rid of his phone, and now only calls out through his computer. So he still has a computer and understands far more about its workings than I do about mine. Nevertheless, he hardly checks his email. "I check it every two or three days," he says, but it has recently been feeling more like two or three weeks. One feels that it's part of the same tendency that he does without packaged food and other products. He doesn't contribute to the waste stream the way I do. But he also doesn't create shelves and building blocks from trash like I do. He works 10 times harder than I--if he's digging a hole he'll not consider quitting till he removes that huge boulder. I instead will let the boulder be and try making use of it's mass. I pride myself on avoiding effort, which can work as laziness to some degree, and, beyond that, as a joyful breakthrough in do-nothing consciousness (which can be miraculous).

      Without his civil engineer technical skills, I wouldn't have my roof water catchment tanks. But he's admiring of my persistence in promoting catchment for the broader community, and at my civic activism in various regards.

      I don't quite know why I'm saying all this. Maybe I intuit that there's a sweet spot in there somewhere. If you believe that human kind can survive, as I believe it can, then the nasty technology is part of the reason why it can. Not in any clean, easily explained way. The decisive factor in how it's used is extreme modesty of scale. And extreme messiness and looseness applies as well. But sorry. I' might try to make this clearer to myself in future.



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    5. Hey Artleads,

      You said "The decisive factor in how it's used is extreme modesty of scale. "

      Exactly ... how it's used. I think in my anecdotal example, it was a particular combination with the age of mass capitalism that ran the boat onto the rocks with music. I think all of those little millions of digital music boxes sold since the eighties ... massed produced in economies of scale ... were mostly just about selling circuit boards, and not about music whatsoever.

      Let's call it willy-nilly technology. A 17 year old rich kid with a dream. He throws his musical devices at the market ... and poof ... wipes out a millennia old tradition in a few decades.

      Willy-nilly technology I call it. Random imaginings thrown at the mass market to see if they stick.

      You said it, "The decisive factor in how it's used is extreme modesty of scale." And limiting the scale in how it was used with automated musical devices should've been considered more thoroughly.

      To musicians, high tech was mass marketed like crack. Every guitarist immediately fired their drummer and bass player and worked as a duo with their singer. It was like crack to them, they couldn't help it. Every musician has had several 'boxes' by now over the years. Millions and millions of little circuit board boxes.

      lol.

      I just don't think it was done with any forethought. We have a technology clusterfuck on our hands.

      Ya, ya, ya ... so I'm a Luddite.

      Thanks for your thoughts Artleads. Hats off to the awesome performance by the Jamaicans at the O's. JA! Makes me iry.

      :)

      Little boxes.

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    6. "Do not give the monkeys crack"

      ... should've been one of the prime directives applied to technology.

      I think growth capitalism, as a technology, qualifies as crack like.

      lol.

      P.S. Artleads ... I meant that it makes me feel iry, not that it makes me iry. Pardon me. Haha.

      :)

      In The Summertime!

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    7. True. Monkeys should not be given crack. Terrence McKenna has an interesting theory that it was hallucinogenics that produced the HSS large brain. Would that mean we are highly addictive creatures, always looking for a fix? If the fix we're on is fatal, we'd best find a different, kinder and gentler fix?

      The trance now is the one of linear progress. The new thing is better than the old thing. (Except when the old can be brought back as a retro product that makes bucks.) And I'm totally out of my depth--nothing new I guess, but here goes:

      The new thing has a quality of verticality to it. It pays no attention to things lateral. It simply digs a hole deeper to the point of exhaustion. So, as an alternative to this, I conjure up an image like a CD disc, where all the information is on the same plain--like a sort of flatland. Or like a galaxy which is like a whiling, flat disc of light.

      What if technology were organized this way? Everything on the same level--hunter gatherer, high tech. We make no great distinction between them. The past, the present, no great distinction. Jesus, Buddha, they aren't in the past, their work having failed. They simply aren't finished yet... So do we endeavor to keep everything of every kind?

      Tell me now; am I deluded?

      Illusions

      http://search.aol.com/aol/video?q=%22want+to+buy+some+illusions%22+Marlena+dietrich&s_it=video-ans&sfVid=true&videoId=8B4FF5CFBB4368AB2A068B4FF5CFBB4368AB2A06&v_t=webmail-hawaii1-basicaol

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    8. Mungo Jerry's pretty rocking!

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  2. Satish, having now read the entire article, I return to thinking about my neighbor, who lives virtually off grid in our somewhat urbanized village. He CAN grow all his food, whether he does or not. And although he uses technology--a beat up old truck, a computer, hardware products--he has many behaviors that put him in the avant garde concerning response to initial collapse (or even longer).

    What makes me most ashamed in comparison is his use of email (which is very sparing). He's very preoccupied with home improvements right now, which makes him even less accessible to email than usual. He prefers that one knocks on his door to communicate with him. I very much dislike knocking on doors, and bask in the impersonality (word) of email. I almost live for email, even though most other things about my computer are mysteries. I feel that my neighbor isn't mired in the BS implied by mediation through email. He seems more real. He loves rocks, and uses them extensively to benefit his garden and house. He is advanced in building and preparing soil. He has studied permaculture and doesn't leave much to chance.

    So he ought to hold on longer post collapse than me. But I can't figure out what any of this means for survival or demise of civilization. I tend to think that we all find a way to survive, or we all do not. I think of my neighbor and his stony handiness. And I think of myself, who never gives up and gravitates toward the impossible. And I can't make any sense of it.

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  3. it doesn't matter what humans do with technology.

    other technology already has multiple offsite backup copies of humans, spread out all over the place, if humans get too destructive of themselves. also hybridized versions of humans, in dozens of different directions, for many dozens of different purposes.

    do human farmers care if some ants cultivate aphids? do the beings that are farming humans care if humans want to mess with iPhones? no and no.

    the only time the farmer cares about aphids is if they are harming his crops. same with human tech. it's only an issue if it can't be remedied by much more advanced tech, as need be. and if necessary, whatever is going on here on Earth can be remedied. not necessarily for the ultimate benefit of humans. that would be nice, but it is not necessary.

    humans themselves will have the ultimate say so on just which direction things go, but not in independence from the rest of the universe. cooperation cannot be forced, but it can be requested.

    every human knows instinctively what kind of cooperation will be beneficial. this choice has zero to do with human technology, and everything to do with human spiritual energy. the choice is actually exceedingly simple.

    current human tech is exceptionally difficult to create and maintain. ironically, tech that is many millions of years more advanced requires nothing more than simple spiritual choices, and it is as maintainable as the stars, and as easy as gravity. the universal life force has a wicked sense of both irony and humor.

    the basic rule is that only certain amounts of information are available at certain levels of vibration. with current collective human vibes, doing just about anything advanced requires massive effort, because it is working at low vibration, and greatly going against the larger flow of the universe.

    the higher the vibes, the more the love, the more information flow, the more flow of all kinds, the more connections, and the more things happen with much less effort. it goes on and on. it also goes exponentially, but not in the way Kurzweil envisions.

    technology is ultimately what Nature IS. but Nature likes to work in certain ways. Nature's technology is the application of Perfect Universal Knowledge to the Solution of Any Problem. Nature's ways ultimately require cooperation, harmony, and love, at many levels. conflict and competition are also key ingredients. but humans right now are like bad chefs. no idea what these ingredients are for, and how they are properly used in balance.

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  4. "the basic rule is that only certain amounts of information are available at certain levels of vibration. with current collective human vibes, doing just about anything advanced requires massive effort, because it is working at low vibration, and greatly going against the larger flow of the universe."

    Lovely, and says so much about why people do what they do.

    "Nature's technology is the application of Perfect Universal Knowledge to the Solution of Any Problem. Nature's ways ultimately require cooperation, harmony, and love, at many levels. conflict and competition are also key ingredients. but humans right now are like bad chefs. no idea what these ingredients are for, and how they are properly used in balance."

    :-)

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  5. Thanks for that write-up on the effects of technology on the music industry, LWA... Kurzweil is a nut case in many ways. I saw a screening of a documentary on him called "Transcendent Man" several years ago. The man was there on the Google campus to answer questions after the screening. He said he pops some 60 pills a day to keep himself alive for another 20 years. He said if he keeps himself alive for another 20 years, there will be enough technological advancement by then that he will be able to live forever. He fits right in with the culture at Google, which hired him as a director of Artificial Intelligence. They're all a bunch of nut cases :)

    mo, you think humans are being farmed? That thought has certainly crossed my mind and if we look around the 7.4 billion people today, it seems like a large human farm.

    Artleads, I like your neighbor... I like knocking on doors if there are no dogs :)

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  6. It feels preferable to push through with the technology mired program I find myself in. Improving my understanding of that technology program feels appropriate.

    I appreciate this discussion because it gives me a chance to affirm and even double down on what I am already doing. It seems impossible to desert my technology-conditioned way of thinking to the extent of stepping out of it and comparing it with a more nature-oriented way of life.

    DESPERATELY SEEKING THE INDIGENOUS

    (Note: To label somebody a peasant is fairly analogous to labeling a black person by the N word. I use the term here only because I haven't figured out a better or clearer way to describe social divisions in my native land.)

    I grew up with *relative* privilege. Because of the legacy of slavery, peasants, from whom I was separated, might have been hired to work in the yard, the field or the house at next to no wages. The social system and traditions required them to be deferential. There was also, generally, enough available land for most peasants to subsist and maintain a seemingly good level of health. But behind all this was sophisticated British colonial technical management of the society. There were health services, probably free in most cases, that peasants could afford.

    Field and yard workers might walk barefoot, with soles as hard as leather. Toenails might be rough, dark clumps of cartilage due to damage over the years. They walked everywhere, often many miles. I didn't understand that world, since I was denied (by circumstances) much contact with it. In later years, trying to bridge the social gap, I got access to a few of the shacks inhabited by the rural poor.

    While my own domicile was fairly ordinary, it had lace curtains, refined varnished furniture, copious silver and porcelain cutlery, a claw and ball bathtub, a flush toilet, sash windows. A painter was hired to "frost" the windows with white paint applied with wavy strokes. A thin, clear, straight line was incised into the paint about an inch away from the mullions, acting somewhat like a second border for each pane of glass. The front door probably contained an immovable window made of textured glass. That glass would have been pleasing, in its polished refinement, to explore with the fingernails.

    Peasant huts, by contrast, has no glass windows, no flush toilets, no bright colors. Everything was tones of gray-umber or taupe. Lighting was by oil lamps, or rather, a bottle with kerosene and some sort of "wick." Shacks were tiny and rough, often a single room per family. A pit toilet outside was perhaps close to being a luxury.

    I say all this to explain the almost unfathomable distance in technology between the peasant setting and my own. And this, even though I used the same roads, and, in primary school, might have shared classrooms with some of them, prevents me from understanding their way of life. Often, peasants never learned to read or write.

    Despite the British hegemony over the physical and cultural landscape, there must have been a massively hands-off policy to the countryside. Poor country people had access to enough growing space to prevent major uprisings. They also were allowed considerable rein to practice what remained of their rich pre-colonial African heritage. There were infirmaries (one of which my guardians ran), there was relatively free emergency health care in town. There were market places to sell food grown in the hills. There was work breaking rocks for gravel roads. There was work on private sugar cane plantations, but I have less sense of that world.

    My quest is to find a way to make sense of the degrees of nearness or distance from the natural world that characterize the world I grew up in.


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  7. Yoh, humans are being farmed like cattle, farmed by the funny, funny "elite", farmed by funny, funny capitalism, wich says "Ho ho, we are ALL responsibe, some earn just a little bit more funny money and therefore do a little less of work!" Farmed by aliens would be somewhat interesting, somewhat outstanding, somewhat super-natural- but man, being farmed by the "elite" is just boring. So what, finally, the "elite" will be farmed like anybody else by Mother Nature, muhahaha, I like that. Finally, we will simply all meet at the boneyard, that's for sure. Nothing to gain, nothing to lose, Mr. Moneymaker, you will surely learn that too :-)

    http://tinyurl.com/hw978wa

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  8. Satish, without technology, I wouldn't know you, I couldn't talk to you. There wouldn't be any books without technology either. Man, I would miss these books. And I couldn't play guitar without some technology. I agree with LWA, technology can kill creativity, inspiration. It widens the possibilities on one hand, but it can destroy musical creativity as well. To me, it is a matter of Balance, like mo said. See, the Kogi for instance have a spinning wheel and a mill too. But nevertheless they live in harmony with Mother Nature.

    @Artleads

    " DESPERATELY SEEKING THE INDIGENOUS"

    Yes, me too. But be sure:

    The indigenous, who is connected to the Nagual, is still within us, deep down inside we are all still indigenous, it is submerged, but still there.

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  9. When I look at it, the question comes down to suffering:

    Modern man causes pain to Nature and therefore causes pain to himself. After all, there has always been suffering since life began. The question is, how to minimize suffering. To achieve that, we need to get in Balance and avoid greed, hatred and ignorance. If we do that, we can handle technology without causing suffering. But anyhow, as long, as we are beings within time and space, we will suffer. To get into the realm of time and space, we need to get born, we need to age and we need to die. And in the mean time, we need to struggle for survival, every plant, every animal and also every human being. That’s suffering, with- or without technology. Nature is a seeker. She seeks forms, she seeks experience, she seeks for herself within the plants, within the animals, within us, even through technology. The entire Kosmos seeks to form itself, seeks to create itself, seeks to find itself, through all experiences any being or any thing might have. Through good and through evil, because Nature doesn’t know of good and evil, only human beings know of good and evil. To know about good and evil causes suffering, we were throughn out of paradise. But it was a dull paradise, without much consciousness, without knowing oneself, without much freedom, mostly based on sheer instincts. To find ourselves, we need to go through time and space and suffer and finally lose everything through death, to come home to our true self, beyond good and evil, beyond joy and pain, beyond birth and death, beyond , beyond, beyond. That’s the reason, why everyone and everything must die, because the core, the Fire is beyond time and space and therefore it burns down everything all the time everywhere one way or another. It can be learned, to handle that fire within ourselves, it can be learned, to tame and and to calm it and to use it in a creative, nondestructive way without causing too much suffering.

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    1. Erm, sorry for multiple posts, but maybe this guy sheds some light on the problem of knowing good and evil, knowing in general and handling the Fire (of knowledge and technology as well):

      " Prometheus (/prəˈmiːθiːəs/ prə-MEE-thee-əs; Greek: Προμηθεύς [promɛːtʰeús], meaning "forethought")[1] is a Titan in Greek mythology, best known as the deity in Greek mythology who was the creator of mankind and its greatest benefactor, who stole fire from Mount Olympus and gave it to mankind..."

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prometheus

      Prometeus is surely connected to technology:

      " Technology ("science of craft", from Greek τέχνη, techne, "art, skill, cunning of hand"; and -λογία, -logia[3]) is the collection of techniques, skills, methods and processes used in the production of goods or services or in the accomplishment of objectives, such as scientific investigation. Technology can be the knowledge of techniques, processes, etc. or it can be embedded in machines, computers, devices and factories, which can be operated by individuals without detailed knowledge of the workings of such things..."

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technology

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    2. Some very important details about Prometeus, the thief of the Fire:

      " The four most ancient sources for understanding the origin of the Prometheus myths and legends all rely on the images represented in the Titanomachy, or the cosmological struggle between the Greek gods and their parents, the Titans. Prometheus, himself a Titan, managed to avoid being in the direct confrontational cosmic battle between Zeus and the other Olympians against Cronus and the other Titans. Prometheus therefore survived the struggle in which the offending Titans were eternally banished by Zeus to the chthonic depths of Tartarus, only to survive to confront Zeus on his own terms in subsequent climactic struggles. The greater Titanomachia depicts an overarching metaphor of the struggle between generations, between parents and their children, symbolic of the generation of parents needing to eventually give ground to the growing needs, vitality, and responsibilities of the new generation for the perpetuation of society and survival interests of the human race as a whole. Prometheus and his struggle would be of vast merit to human society as well in this mythology as he was to be credited with the creation of humans and therefore all of humanity as well. The four most ancient historical sources for the Prometheus myth are Hesiod, Homer, Pindar, and Pythagoras..."

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prometheus

      Yoh, no doubt, Prometeus lives within us. And here we go again:

      Responsibility.

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    3. One last thought:

      Prometeus is the greek version of the problem of knowledge, described in the Genesis as "the fall of man", man, who bit the apple, gained the Fire of consciousness and therefore must suffer outside the paradise of childhood. So, there's only one way left, muhahaha:

      We need to grow up.

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    4. Such eloquence, Nemesis!

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    5. It's about the Music, man...

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yG0oBPtyNb0

      Tsch, tsch tsch, uh...

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    6. I know, I stole your song Nem, lol.

      Thanks. I hadn't heard it in years, and It was too good not to share.

      Hahaha. ;)

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  10. I guess I'm taking the long roundabout route to agreeing with Mo. I find it problematic to jump from my mysterious conceptual framework--to even begin to understand it--to having a meaningful grasp of indigenous life. The rural poor I saw as a child were, presumably, closer to nature than me. But when society began to change, they were the first to buy cell phones in a major way. A worker in my house couldn't afford many basic things, but she had cable TV while I did not. The gradually urbanizing underclass has trouble conserving resources. And if they started out close to nature, living among trees and using little modern technology, they've gone in the opposite direction in short order. They started out building with wood and earthen fill from their immediate surroundings, then switched wholesale to building with cement blocks from a highly energy-greedy and polluting cement industry.

    I first left Jamaica when it was still a primarily rural country (with the implied closeness to nature). Like everywhere else, population explosion coincided there with an explosion of energy use, as well as urbanization and deforestation. As in Jamaica, more people worldwide now live in cities than don't. Cell phone use has also been primary among the underclass there and elsewhere, starting perhaps in the 90s?. Can't say I quite understand what that means. But I do see a massive mental shift away from rural values. The peasant-to-lumpen proletariat movement has thrown out the rural-values baby with the social mobility bathwater.

    I assume that indigenous peoples have existed as long as they have because of their traditions--rituals, taboos, science, belief--and those traditions leave traces in colonial post slavery societies, while the essential elements of harmony with nature are easily abandoned. Does that indicate that a hybrid of westernization, with its tendency to conserve its advantages--family traditions, heirlooms, higher educations, etc.--and post-peasantry society is advantageous for the creation of a viable, durable society? In other words, then, those who start out benefited by technology can help those who originally had the least of it to retain a closeness to nature? Does any of this suggest that it is not very useful to make sharp distinctions as to groups' relative use of technology?

    Sorry for this tortured writing. I'm trying to figure out the subject for the first time.

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    1. " The peasant-to-lumpen proletariat movement has thrown out the rural-values baby with the social mobility bathwater."

      True in many ways. But that goes not for all lumpenproletariat (schönes, deutsches Wort) members, that goes not for me for instance :-) Also, the middle class has thrown out the rural-values baby with the social mobility and the upper class as well. We live in the modern times of sheer individualism, forced by the advertising industries, forced by the mainstream media ect. We live in a time of isolation and seperation on one hand, BUT we communicate with people on the other side of the globe and that's quite enriching: If I can't find soulmates in my neighbourhood, well, then I go to Kuku on the other side of the Moon, ah, sorry, Earth :-)

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    2. Thanks for pointing out that mechanism Nemesis ... we can look historically at the same phenomenon, such as when people in places like India were confused at how their children all wanted to wear jeans ... because all the American kids wear jeans, and they want to listen to rock and roll music ... just because the American kids do. We saw it in waves of farm children moving from the farms to the city during this past generation in North America ... mainly because they thought they were missing out on something. Not much to do on the farm, and they don't want to feel like a hick ... so all of the farm kids moved to the city where they could go nightclubbing, and party, and live the supposed good life. They thought they were hard done by and missing out on something exciting on the farm. They truly thought farm life was backwards, and that it made them look stupid, and that the bright shiny city lights were where all the fun action was at.

      It's like an addiction in a way, and I think (as you mentioned Nemesis) a lot of it was fostered by consumerism ... which creates competition among people; a hierarchy that's imagined based on material trappings. The advertising industry long ago admitted to instilling these inferior feelings in us all using simple psychology. Baby sees another baby with a candy that he doesn't have ... and he wants one too, or he feels inferior.

      I think that's at least part of the mechanism behind those rural Jamaicans all wanting cell phones, and cable, and indoor toilets ... because it gives them the illusion that they are no longer quite as poor when they have the same trappings as the rich man does. People don't need cell phones ... they just want them, that's all. Now, all those rural Jamaicans can feel almost on par with the rich man (or so it seems when they wear his clothes, drive a car like he does, and have a cell phone like him.)

      It's all about wanting to move up the hierarchy ... it's about competition. If they were the first person in their village to have that cell phone, I guarantee you that it was a big status changer for them ... and then the rest will follow suit like an addiction. People don't want to look stupid, or appear poor ... so they copy the ways of the people at the top of the hierarchy.

      The question is, is this a natural response ... or is it a trained response that arose because of the creation of patriarchy and power hierarchies?

      It's almost to similar to how the American blacks are now becoming racist themselves. They are just trying to be like the people at the top is all. People really are that base and automatic in their Pavlovian responses sometimes. Ring the bell, and they salivate ... and they aren't very aware of themselves either.

      I don't look at it like we are moving linearly towards organization and ever greater and greater things. I think it is possible to devolve ... and I think people have unwittingly made weak choices in recent history. I wonder how many ex farm kids regret that decision to leave the farm twenty years later, once they learn how ridiculous city living is, and after they are no longer in a position to move back to the farm because it's no longer in the family.

      Without being able to see the future or the full scope of situations, it's easy to make really poor choices. Things aren't always as they appear and people often behave like copy-cats.

      In my book, your not as guilty if you don't know you're harming something or someone as you are when you become aware you are doing something harmful ... and just carry on doing it anyway. Then there are those who dream up things that they know are harmful right from the start and do then anyway. IMO, there are shades of grey in the responsibility zone here. Accidents happen, but stubbornly repeating accidents is sort of stupid.

      I'm glad google has Kurzweil. They can have him. Bye bye google. Snarf de snarf snarf snarf. :D

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    3. Question: When did music stop being something we DID ... and start being something we CONSUMED?

      These two concepts are miles away from each other, and lead to very different places.

      The value in music is in the DOING of it, not in the HAVING of it. That's how much we've changed over the years.

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  11. When I was a child in the country, life had a feeling of relative tranquility and permanence. But by modern standards, it was grossly unequal. Police were there to protect people like me, and if it came to a court case, I would be likely to win. (That's still sort of the case, although safety from violence is much less assured.) In America, just substitute "white" for "artleads." In America, that would be a rough definition of racism. You have to have all the social and legal institutions on your side in order to be racist. But WTF would you call people of my class? Since we're not too physically distinct from the poor, our institutionalized privileges are weaker than are those of the white person in America. In the eyes of the larger world, we're no different from the peasants we once towered over. We have no place of honor other than to defy the hierarchy. Worse if you're illegitimate (what a word!!!!!) Conjecture: Just as black culture somewhat subverts racism in the US, peasant-derived culture in Jamaica--like reggae, for instance--subverts classism in Jamaica. A lot has to do with culture, it seems. If we could make digging in the garden cool and culturally hip, it could bring change. Were the Hippies exemplars of this? Are Rastafarians exemplars of this? Maybe so in both cases, but this "change" is so slow that it seems like standing still...

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  12. Back to technology. I'm having trouble entirely distinguishing between cultures that aren't "separated from nature," and those that are. The Kogi, for instance, are connected to nature, but they don't consider themselves separate from us (other than tactically?). They call us younger brother, indicating that we're part of their family. Through the acute observation of their world, they are aware that we are killing it. They themselves seek us out to discuss this alarming situation, not only to our world but to theirs.

    So I don't see a decisive divide between us other than our thoughts. Every time we throw out an old product, thinking that the new one is better, we may be cutting off the rung (sp) of the ladder we used to get to the one we're on. We are not only erasing the past, but also our connection to the base. It seems to me that we have the choice to stop doing this, and instead not destroy anything. I vote for Museum Earth. And the individualism that Nem mention doesn't have to engulf us. We can choose to share, as many millennials appear to be doing. It all begins with the thoughts, it seems.

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    1. It seems to me that the main difference, as you suggest, is in the thoughts.

      The Kogi are concerned about the health of their surroundings, the surroundings that support their existence. That's where their thoughts go.

      Westerners are concerned about climbing social ladders and fitting into the norm, their social status ... and are perfectly ok with shitting where they eat. That's where their thoughts go.

      All just thoughts.

      We're all connected to nature. Even in a city, it's right there out on the front lawn. It's the air we breathe, and it's the food chain, and it's even there in our own biology. For modern cultures though, it's just removed from their thoughts is all. It's not emphasized or focused on as being an important thing to think about.

      All just thoughts and perspectives and worldviews.

      Just thoughts.

      I think.

      ?

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    2. @LWA (sorry, inline reply button did not work)

      To me, to "consume" Music is a good thing (to "listen" maybe is a better term). If I wouldn’t have had the possibility to consume, better, to LISTEN to Music, I’d never started to play the guitar and started to sing. Man, I would go insane without listening to Music. In my early years, I listened to Music like crazy, like an addict and I still do that. And sure, it is about DOING IT as well. Listen, doing, listen, doing, all day long, yes, yes.

      But sure, there is a bad side to "consuming" music:

      It impacts music culture, as many people ONLY listen to music without doing it, consuming it like a TV show or some cheeseburger without really listening to it. And then the masses get their musical fast food just like all the other shit.

      But anyway, there is a lot going on in the Music scene globally. Just look at all these incredible amateur (= for the sheer love of it) talents on youtube:

      https://youtu.be/Jr3FsjTMZKY

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsIB-aYIJLI

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    3. Btw, here are these youtube living room talents I posted above some years later:

      https://youtu.be/2Xdzy_8-2mQ

      https://youtu.be/-NSNGWfxDnw

      Amazing to see these Music aficionados evolve over time. Without technology it would not be possible to enjoy all these talents. Phenomena like youtube are like a new kind of global community. Sure, you can get lost in shit at youtube, wasting time with nonsense. But it can be incredibly inspiring as well, if you know what to search for. I learned a huge amount of things on the internet (technology).

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    4. I wasn't using 'consume' as a synonym for 'enjoying and listening too.' I was sort of thinking of something else entirely.

      A chef might become a chef because they have a passion for cooking and for feeding people. However, it would be ridiculous for me to expect a chef to feed me for free in his restaurant 'just for the sheer love of it.'

      If you set aside the millionaire superstars at the top (which are themselves a modern anomaly, one created by capitalism and not really representative of the now almost defunct 'local community musician' scene of yesteryear) ... setting aside that anomaly, the flooding of music into our lives through car radios, ipods, grocery stores, elevators, etc ... has driven the value of the local musician down to nearly nil in most places.

      There was a lot of hullabaloo from musicians half a century ago when recording/playback technology suddenly let anybody that wanted to cut out the local musician, but still have all the music they needed for their establishment.

      Fast forward to today, and it's official now thanks to the internet ... music is free, and people just expect to have it. People now take for granted that it will be provided to them on demand and for free.

      Those artists we praise so much, DaVinci, Michelangelo, Raphael… guess what… they didn’t work for free. They were all commissioned for their works. The 'starving artist who does it for love' meme is an invention of the modern consumer ... not a notion that came from the artists.

      If you want to see how that all works, the next time you get a flat tire on your bike, go see if the bike shop will replace your tire for free 'just for the sheer love of it.' Forget notions of greed and excess ... a fair exchange has always been a good way to do things (up until capitalism perverted this notion of 'exchange.')

      A century ago you only ever heard music if you had the good fortune to have a musician in the area. Now, with technology pumping out music literally everywhere in our day ... it's 'value' has been reduced to zero. Ask a person under twenty and you'll find they are incredulous that anyone ever had to 'pay' for music at all. It's unfathomable to them. Recordings are free now.

      There always were the 'weekend warriors' locally who dabbled in music in the few hours outside of their regular jobs ... but their music was always only just a shadow of the quality created by the local people who did it full time. It's a matter of the amount of time invested in getting really proficient at your craft.

      Now, there are very few full time musicians left in my major city anymore. Nobody really remembers forty years ago and how being a local small time musician used to be a viable trade ... because there was a real demand, because music was more scarce back then. Then technology came and saturated every corner of our day with unlimited free music, and music subsequently became devalued and was taken for granted, and now it's just expected.

      That's what I was referring to by 'consuming.'

      People forget that music has been part of our psyche since before we even had language. I personally think it plays a far bigger role in our well being than we realize. That's why it's used everywhere ... even elevators and grocery stores and work places.

      Note that I find this conversation is usually lost on most people, unless they've actually been on the inside of the 'business.' Doesn't matter though. I just bring this up for the example of an effect of technology.

      "Hey chef-boy-ar-dee ... whip me up one of those good fillet mignons and a bottle of your best wine ... for the love of it. And make it snappy asshole."

      That's about the way many people behave toward local musicians these days. The appreciation is gone because of saturation through technology.

      I'm gonna laugh like hell when the lights go out and the ipods can't be charged anymore.

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    5. LWA, you talk about payed, professional musicians. But that’s NOT the natural type of musician. Real natural music is cultural music were everybody is involved without any payment at all. The professional musician came up with courtly music at the palasts of the "elite". Before that there were only spiritual music at the churches and cultural music, real FOLK music. Just look at Africa for instance, there you can still see real cultural Music just for the sheer love of it without any payment. There you see grandmother and grandfather and children play and sing together, without being specialized, payed musical experts. Or go into some flamenco bar in Madrid or Sevilla, there you can see natural musicians singing, dancing, playing without any payment at all, you see grandfather, grandma, the cchildren doimg real natural music for the sheer love of it without being a payed specialist. Real NATURAL MUSIC is a cultural thing, a community thing, not a payed expert thing. You talk about Michelangelo and da Vinci. Yoh, these are highly specialized, highly payed, courtly experts of art, elitists of art. Maybe that’s the reason why I am no professional musician, because I do it just for the sheer love of it. When Music and Art in general began to become comercialized, that was the day we lost contact to the roots of real natural Music and Art, FOLK Music, FOLK Art. Sure, now the traditional, multibillion dollar music industry is fucked up because of youtube, because of the internet and shit, muhahaha. So what? I give a fuck about Warner and Sony and all these funny big money machines. To me, the real problem isn’t technology nor civilization but greed and corruption.

      " I'm gonna laugh like hell when the lights go out and the ipods can't be charged anymore."

      I do understand that. But anyway, you can shut down your smartphone, computer and light any time you want, can’t you? Yes, you can, but obviously you don’t want to :-)

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    6. THIS is natural, native, original Music without any payment:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P8jujmxu_Bs

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cK1kLfm-N50

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xYwugI3do00

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sLFH01qJT3k

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXQzCkezezc

      I don't say, musical expert musicians shouldn't get payed for their work. But real NATURAL Music is FOLK Music, a cultural community thing without any payment at all.

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    7. About that "wonderful" life at the farm: Maybe look at it from a different angle:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eJxm58htzqc

      " Maggie's Farm

      I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more
      No, I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more
      Well, I wake up in the morning
      Fold my hands and pray for rain
      I got a head full of ideas
      That are drivin' me insane
      It's a shame the way she makes me scrub the floor
      I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more.

      I ain't gonna work for Maggie's brother no more
      No, I ain't gonna work for Maggie's brother no more
      Well, he hands you a nickel
      He hands you a dime
      He asks you with a grin
      If you're havin' a good time
      Then he fines you every time you slam the door
      I ain't gonna work for Maggie's brother no more.

      I ain't gonna work for Maggie's pa no more
      No, I ain't gonna work for Maggie's pa no more
      Well, he puts his cigar
      Out in your face just for kicks
      His bedroom window
      It is made out of bricks
      The National Guard stands around his door
      Ah, I ain't gonna work for Maggie's pa no more.

      I ain't gonna work for Maggie's ma no more
      No, I ain't gonna work for Maggie's ma no more
      Well, she talks to all the servants
      About man and God and law
      Everybody says
      She's the brains behind pa
      She's sixty-eight, but she says she's fifty-four
      I ain't gonna work for Maggie's ma no more.

      I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more
      I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more
      Well, I try my best
      To be just like I am
      But everybody wants you
      To be just like them
      They say sing while you slave and I just get bored
      I ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more."

      Bob Dylan, Maggie's Farm

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    8. Sure, now the traditional, multibillion dollar music industry is fucked up because of youtube, because of the internet and shit, muhahaha. So what? I give a fuck about Warner and Sony and all these funny big money machines. To me, the real problem isn’t technology nor civilization but greed and corruption.

      Ya ... that's how the myth goes. This is a very cliche perspective, and everyone makes this same argument. Bit, it was actually the roots, bottom level community musicians that took the biggest hit and got wiped out, not Sony.

      "... you can shut down your smartphone, computer and light any time you want, can’t you? Yes, you can, but obviously you don’t want to."

      I didn't file share or utube for music until just this past year ... quite on purpose and out of principle ... up until my local grassroots music scene was completely dead and when there was nothing to stand up for anymore.

      The argument you make is what everyone on the consumer side of the issue has said since day one. Give me my music to listen too ... who cares about the person who created it, it's not my problem, me me me.

      What the fuck do you care if a musician can replace his gear when it wears out? Well, what the fuck do I care if you have a record player in your ghetto then either, right? Or if you ever hear music?

      The bohemian life musicians had cobbled together in community music (similar to the African tribal musicians you speak of) is exactly what got wiped out with the advent of internet file sharing. You seem to be equating people who were scratching out a fair living on next to nothing (who were not connected to the likes of Sony in any way), you seem to be equating them with the mega rich industry stars as if they were one and the same. Funny how it's the roots musicians who've been eliminated ... while Sony is still here, and actually doing quite fine.

      I agree with Satish when he says:

      "So technology first makes inroads into the village, disrupts the current cohesion of the family and finally offers a semblance of connection through the smart phone. This is what they point to and applaud as a marker of progress and value that technology brings!"

      Yes, that was the trajectory for how technology suffocated grassroots music. It was the poorest who suffered the most from the technology ... not Sony. It's only been a few decades as far as electronics and their effect on music is concerned ... so most people are still back in the "hey, this is great" stage. They haven't felt the faustian consequences yet.

      For the consumer ... this has been a great short term gain. Consider music 'consumed.' It all depends on which side of the coin you're on, and whether you were advantaged or disadvantaged by the technology and the sudden changes that were inflicted by it. Like I say ... if you were a consumer, then technology has worked out great for you for the moment.

      I withdrew from playing music in nightclubs the last time my equipment needed replacing, because I hadn't made enough coin to replace it ... despite the fact that I was gigging every night and was a very popular musician in my city. I sort of had no choice in the matter.

      That was quite a few years ago ... it's progressed even further since then ... now the clubs pay nothing ... zero ... it's all just done for the love of it (they call it exposure, the utube argument), which very few people are wealthy enough to do. Rich children of oil moguls are the people who play in the last few remaining clubs now, because they can afford to play for free. And they all suck, and the clubs are empty because of it. Lately there's even a new rule for qualifying for a gig in these empty clubs ... you play for free ... AND you have to bring "your own following" (and they have to buy lots of beer while they're there too.)

      It's been a race to the bottom, not the great equalizer that the consumer myth claimed it's been.

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    9. " The argument you make is what everyone on the consumer side of the issue has said since day one. Give me my music to listen too ... who cares about the person who created it, it's not my problem, me me me."

      Erm, when did I say that? Maybe just read, what I actually said:

      I don't say, musical expert musicians shouldn't get payed for their work. But real NATURAL Music is FOLK Music, a cultural community thing without any payment at all.

      I wish you a relaxed sunday, just like I have ;-)

      ... back to my geetar, DOING it.

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    10. Well, I clarified that I was setting aside the mega stars of Sony as an anomaly and addressing the grassroots local musician in the post you responded to, and you proceeded to go straight for the Sony cliche, so I don't think you were really reading what I said either. ;)

      You seemed to be implying that it was greedy to expect to be compensated for hauling your expensive gear to a club and entertaining people for an evening. Surely you don't teach music lessons for free, how could you do that for long?

      The folk music of Africa WAS supported materially, even if that wasn't with monetary exchanges. There are exchanges that don't involve money ... like when you are given a hut, and fed, and given a place in the community as an acknowledgment for your musical contribution to the tribe. That's how that worked, but it was still an exchange of energy, of life force. Sustenance was provided because people valued those musicians and the music they created for the community. Now, with an ipod or smart phone in every pocket and unlimited music on hand for free 24/7 ... who needs to support local musicians anymore? And that's where we've ended up.

      But, it's not worth fighting about. What's done is done. It's like not realizing there would be a drawback to fossil fuel. Who could have seen the consequences, who could have foreseen where the tech would land us?

      It's like that with all tech it seems, from antibiotic resistant microbes to CO2 warming to depleted soils from the chemicals of the green revolution. All these advancements seem great ... until the entropy sets in. I don't think any of this could have even been avoided. It seems to all be part of the spiritual experience down here, lol.

      Enjoy your relaxed day with your guitar Nem. :)

      As an experiment, stop charging for guitar lessons and see how much time you can commit to that anymore once you're out finding sustenance elsewhere with your limited time in a day. Unless of course you're rich ... then you can do that no problem.

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    11. Man, why do you keep speakin round what I said actually?! Well, let me repeat myself for the third time now:

      I don't say, musical expert musicians shouldn't get payed for their work. But real NATURAL Music is FOLK Music, a cultural community thing without any payment at all.

      You can not deny that. Just go back some thousand years ago in history or just go to indigenous people in the Amazon forest or wherever- you will not find any payed musicians, that's just a fact. So, we have to distinguish NATURAL, tribal music, where everyone is involved from specialized, MODERN musical experts, who do Music as a payed profession, these are simply two pairs of shoes, my friend.

      " As an experiment, stop charging for guitar lessons and see how much time you can commit to that anymore once you're out finding sustenance elsewhere with your limited time in a day. Unless of course you're rich ... then you can do that no problem."

      You know, I paid very much for LISTENING to Music (ok, you call it "consuming"), I paid for countless records, I paid for compact discs, I paid for live concerts, I always love to pay when I go to some live concert in the club in my hometown and therefore I don't have any problem to get paid for guitar lessons either :-)

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    12. I heard that ... I just don't agree that there was no exchange of sustenance in those ancient cultures. I think there was ... it just wasn't done with money. Those musicians were given a place in the community and fed and kept alive because they were needed.

      With music in everyone's pocket now ... that valuing of musicians has been eliminated. And what do you know ... they are no longer given a place in the community and kept alive. So they eventually leave music to find sustenance elsewhere.

      Equitable energy exchanges don't have to include money. Those ancient music makers were compensated in other ways ... so that they were alive and available to provide the music that they knew how to create when it was time for them to do so.

      In that way there in fact was a compensation, and it was an exchange of energy ... not for free. If they had just let them starve because they were working on their music instead of out with the hunting party... then the music would have gone away ... so they ensured that didn't happen by feeding the music makers of the tribe. Now we just do that with money as a more universal exchange unit. Take away the money, and the exchange disappears. Replace the musician with utube ... and the musician disappears.

      Nowadays, everyone has utube ... so who cares if there is no musician down the street or in the community, see how that works? That was the picture I was trying to paint.

      But it's nothing to get upset over. I'm just having a discussion here. :)

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    13. " I just don't agree that there was no exchange of sustenance in those ancient cultures. I think there was ... it just wasn't done with money. Those musicians were given a place in the community and fed and kept alive because they were needed."

      But you can't compare that in any way to modern, multibillion music INDUSTRY, you can't compare that to modern live concerts, where you have on one hand professional, paid musical experts on the stage, doing it and sheer consumers/listeners who DON NOT DO IT on the other hand. You compare tribal musicians, who maybe get some food or some aplause from the community with high specialized modern musicians? Com on, tribal music is a community thing, not a consumer thing.

      " But it's nothing to get upset over. I'm just having a discussion here"

      That's fo sure, I am not upset, why should I. I just have my usual fun here :-)

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    14. But that multi-billion dollar industry is an anomaly, any grassroots musician can tell you that is not even related to the 'local small scale live music community."

      It's the local community that suffered when they were exchanged for the playlist on your smart phone. That billion dollar industry Sony has going on never has had anything to do with local live music. It's Sony's music that is actually what's ON the smart phones and why nobody needs local music anymore.

      Local small scale live music is where the majority of musicians (used to) eek out a modest existence. It's the convenience and cheapness of music being available on the smart phone that has put the final nail in the coffin of the small local music scene in many places. People listen to music on demand and anywhere they are on their smart phone. Live musicians are unnecessary anymore, so in many places live music has all but disappeared, and the musicians along with them. It was bad for the average (non Sony) musician.

      I never was talking about Justin Beiber and Sony mega records. That's not representative of the vast majority of musicians .. it's an anomaly and I was not addressing it in my discussion. I was addressing the millions of day to day musicians that used to make up local (and disappearing) music communities ... not Sony with their six planetary wide mega stars.

      Eliminating millions of local artists because now six artists are funneled out to the entire world on smart phones was sort of exactly the type of destructive imbalance I was criticizing.

      Take away those six mega stars on people's smart phones and communities would need their musicians again. Although I'm not expecting that to happen, lol.

      When I speak of musicians and music ... I'm usually never talking about Sony or mega industry stars. That's not where the majority of music existed just a short while ago.

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    15. Yes, yes, brother, I am with you:

      The multibillion dollar industry (Warner, Sony ect blah blah) killed the professional musicians, except for some very small minority who got millionairs. See, that's where all that funny money went, it went into some pockets of some funny celebrities and into the pockets of funny managers and shit, it SURELY DID NOT go into the pockets of the consumers, did it? The consumer still has to pay ~20€ for a compact disc, the musicians maybe get 5% of that money, the rest goes to the big, fat music industry.

      Delete
    16. And in a past couple of years it's narrowed even further. The consumer now pays almost nothing for music on spotify and itunes ... the artist gets 0.012% (almost nothing, not even worth doing anymore unless you're just squeezing a few last pennies out of music you already were compensated for in the seventies (RESALE of OLD music is all where it's at mostly now, musicians can't produce new music at 0.012% compensation, studio time is too expensive to warrant that now ... nobody has the coin to get loans for recording if there is no way to recoup that money.))

      It's all been funneled to a few players at the very top ... as happens with predatory capitalism. Lately, those players at the top are the computer technology and smart phone companies who are rich already and yet still squeeze every last penny out and hoard the entirety of the cash flow for themselves.

      It's that line of thinking that is the problem. I'm sure Apple and spotify have no concern at all for how their tech has wiped out local music in all but a few last pockets here and there. Not too long ago, local music was everywhere and the benefit was distributed widely. Now, a few at the top have captured all the benefit for themselves. That's the folly of the mentality of predatory growth capitalism.

      To me, the word 'consume' means to cannibalize ... to eat, to consume. It's pretty commonly accepted that once a song is released in digital format on the internet, everyone will go to napster and help themselves for free. It's already accepted that people will no longer pay for your expensive to make recordings. How is that viable long term? The last thing available has been to make your money selling T-shirts and swag if you can get a concert tour going for yourself, because nobody buys your album anymore ... that's settled now you must give it away for free.

      That wasn't ever the plan of technology though. It was just the consequence of the nature of digital files on the internet is all, an unsolvable consequence of the technology. The result we see is just something we've all merely had to try and adjust to. In the end, there proved to be no way to adjust. Now the tech companies are just grabbing what they can while they can ... they don't care if music ceases to exist in the future (except for the music that was already created in the past.)

      I used to try and point this all out to people in the early days of digital file sharing, but people live in a world of artificially created scarce resources. Once it was there for free on napster, nobody was ever going to go to itunes to pay for it. Instead of altering the technology, the foundational supports of the musicians livelyhood was what got adjusted ... and it wasn't good for musicians anywhere.

      Silly monkeys.



      Delete
    17. "predatory growth capitalism"

      Yes, to me that's the main problem, not civilization/technology, not the consumer. Man, we are ALL consumers, aren't we?! When you eat some bread, you are a consumer, when you use electricity, you are a consumer. When you use the internet, you are a consumer. When you wear clothes, you are a consumer. Ervery animal, every plant, every living being is a consumer. And the cosmic FIRE is the central consumer of it all. Btw:

      Btw, you play the keyboard, right? Why not let's have some fun and do some colaboration? I could give some vocals and some guitar first and you could add some keyboard stuff to it. What about that? I mean, just DOING it here and now 8-)

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  13. @Artleads

    "We can choose to share, as many millennials appear to be doing. It all begins with the thoughts, it seems."

    To me, this is the main task at hand: We need to get away from a vertical economy and establish a sharing economy. Btw-, love your thoughts aboutnthe Kogi and all. Yes, they STILL call us younger BROTHERS. They know and respect, that we are still relatives. There seems to be much love and respect within their spirits, like real elder brothers.

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  14. Hi Nem, good to see you... so, yeah, you're right... I wouldn't be able to communicate with you this way if there weren't any technology. There wouldn't be any books not would there be the modern guitar... and yet, none of those are required for simple contentment with life, and even to thrive. We made music for almost 200,000 years without a lot of messing with our habitats. We passed down enormous amounts of knowledge and wisdom through hundreds of generations without the need for a single book. And we had much intimacy and connection without the cell phone or the Internet. It's often argued that the smart phone brings people together. They point to the mother in a small village in the third world being able to call and talk to her son working in the city. Such magic! But exactly why the son is off working in the city is not considered. It's taken as a given. But it's because of technology that there are roads and vehicles that took the son to the city, rather forced him to move to make a living. It's because of technology that the age-old ways of making a sustainable living in the village have been eroded over time. It's because of technology that the farmer can no longer produce food for his family and for the village, instead forced to rely on the vagaries of far-away markets. So technology first makes inroads into the village, disrupts the current cohesion of the family and finally offers a semblance of connection through the smart phone. This is what they point to and applaud as a marker of progress and value that technology brings!

    What do we really have to show for today with all our thousands of libraries filled with books? Are people that much more knowledgeable? A 12-year old tribal child handily beats most of us in her level of awareness and sensitivity to her surroundings, to other beings and her respect for creation. Books are a sign of separation from nature. Sure, that's what we have today to learn from, in the absence of oral traditions. And I am personally indebted to books of all kinds that have helped me become more conscious of the world around me. But I can't say that books set the standard for transmitting knowledge. They are more often used for mass propaganda than for true education, as we all know. Books are the tool of choice for the state to spread its propaganda to every school child. And books put a heavy toll on the environment. We use so much paper today, it's hard to fathom. We cut down a 100 Million trees every year just for the low cost paper that's used in junk mail. The same set of conditions that have given us books have given rise to the junk mail industry. And technology is the culprit's tool in all these cases.

    The fact that we use technology today doesn't mean we shouldn't examine it critically. All I'm saying is there were times when we didn't need it and we were just as happy, and far more sustainable in our relationship with creation. In fact, many cultures across the world eschewed technology in favor of traditional ways because they either foresaw or soon learned of what it would eventually bring. It took just one culture somewhere (the mother of our own culture) to ignore the warnings and start tearing up Mother Earth.

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    1. I come from the ghetto, there were no books, no Music, no Art, no inspiration, no freedom, just eat, work, sleep, all day long. Man, that was sheer Hell I can tell you: To me, books and the record player were the way to freedom and inspiration.

      So, then please tell me, why don't you shut down you computer, electricity and all? Don't you read books, don't you use electricity, internet ect ect?

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    2. You're response is close to being the logical fallacy called Tu Quoque that Satish mentioned in his article. Like Satish, I'm not trying to change behavior here ... I'm just trying to analyze trajectories and looking at how we got places by analyzing cause and effect.

      A "Tu Quoque" is also used when climate change deniers say you can't criticize fossil fuel use if you're doing it on a computer made with plastics derived from fossil fuels.

      My use of a computer doesn't negate the the dangers of fossil fuel use, that would be illogical.

      I'm pointing out this logical fallacy because you've used it on both me and Satish today in two separate instances. Using a technology doesn't invalidate criticisms made about using said technology. If people still socialized face to face out of necessity like in the past, I probably wouldn't be socializing on the internet at all ... I find it to be a lot less fulfilling than the old fashioned face to face contact that disappeared with the advent of the star trek communicator. But what are you going to do ... our hands are sort of tied if you want to socialize with people. It doesn't mean it's better though, it sometimes just mean it's become the only choice.

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    3. "To me, the real problem isn’t technology nor civilization but greed and corruption."

      Greed and corruption have given rise to technology and civilization. We wouldn't have had the latter without the former. We didn't have the latter for 99% of our time on the planet because we kept any individual tendencies for greed and corruption in check. The larger community of a tribe kept the Wetiko characters in check, even excommunicating such sociopathic members of their own extended family if necessary.

      As LWA said, "It all depends on which side of the coin you're on, and whether you were advantaged or disadvantaged by the technology and the sudden changes that were inflicted by it." It would be fair to say that all of us reading and writing here are beneficiaries of technology in at least one way, even if we are victims in other ways. But there are billions of people who are mostly victims and they will never see a single benefit from technology. It's not because the others wouldn't let them have those benefits, in fact the others who enjoy access to technology are trying their best to distribute its fruit. But it doesn't work that way. In the short term, Technology ALWAYS leaves behind more victims than it seemingly benefits and in the long term, it leaves behind everyone. We're approaching the point where it will be evident that it has left us all, everyone of us who wrongly assumed we were benefiting from it, in the lurch. Why is this so? Why must it be this way?

      Technology is about manipulation. And when we manipulate the Earth (agriculture, mining and extraction, waste disposal, building cities, razing forests, etc.) we end up manipulating other beings that are close to the Earth (indigenous peoples, wild animals, plants, etc.) Again, this is the broader definition of technology. It's not the gadgets and the conveniences that such manipulation results in for civilized people. Most civilized people can't imagine their life without their conveniences so they defend what they are told brings it all to them - technology. Ultimately, technology doesn't bring things out of a vacuum... it helps transform what is already there in nature and in the creation around us into the things that we deem are more useful to us. Technology is a prime example of anthropocentric thinking and behavior. In fact, it's even worse than that, because it takes from the vast majority of people and gives it to a few. We, here, are some of those few at the top of the pyramid of civilization. To the extent that we defend technology and point to our conveniences and gadgets, we fail to see where they all came from and who were disadvantaged and dis-empowered in the process. Ultimately it's a failure to see the vast interconnectedness present around us because when we hurt the other, we hurt ourselves. And that is the theme of the times we live in. Technology is coming home to roost.

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    4. In a way I see technology as a basic form of greed in itself. To desire and lust after "easier, better, more convenient, more leverage, etc, etc."

      It's about not being ok with what you've got and desiring to have things be "better."

      It's almost like it's just another consequence of the overall wetiko tendencies. The desire for bigger, better, more leverage ... more, more, more.

      It's like technology is born out of greed and the dissatisfaction about what you've got at the moment. The negatives seem to always outweigh any short term gains.

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    5. Man, ANY musical instrument is civilization/technology, any knife, any clothes, any prepared/cooked food, any hunting weapon ect ect ect is civilization/technology. If you want to damn civilization, you have to start right with Adam and Eve. See, this for instance is civilization/technology:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_flutes

      And this for instance is civilization too:

      http://psgsc.wisc.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/89/2012/05/fire2.jpg

      So, what's your goal? Back to the apes? One thing for sure: The money "elite" will love your argument against civilization, saying, that civilization gave way to corruption, not greed of some funny "superior" money "elite".

      Delete
  15. @Satish

    Ok, but please, you didn't answer my question yet:

    Tell me, why don't you shut down your computer, electricity and all? Don't you read books, don't you use
    electricity, internet ect ect? Don't you damn exactly the things you are using right now to tell me
    your opinions about technology/civilization?

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    1. @Satish

      "Greed and corruption have given rise to technology and civilization"

      Man, ANY musical instrument is civilization, any knife, any clothes, any prepared/cooked food, any hunting weapon ect ect ect is civilization. If you want to damn civilization, you have to start right with Adam and Eve. See, this for instance is civilization:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_flutes

      And this for instance is civilization too:

      http://psgsc.wisc.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/89/2012/05/fire2.jpg

      So, what's your goal? Back to the apes? One thing for sure: The money "elite" will love your argument against civilization, saying, that civilization gave way to corruption, not greed of some funny "superior" money "elite".

      Delete
    2. It's not black or white ... all or nothing. There are nuances.

      Money as a universal exchange unit was actually a great idea. If I had buffalo skins to trade and you have shirts to trade ... what happens when you need a skin but I don't need a shirt? You have no way to trade me for a buffalo skin. So money was invented. Sell your shirt for money and NOW you can buy my buffalo skin even when I don't need a shirt. It was actually a good idea.

      The problem came when some people made it their goal to pervert the system and found a way to get all the money into their pocket alone ... they subverted the system. That's wasn't the initial intention behind money at all.

      Money isn't an inherently bad idea. Thinking you needed more money than you needed for ten lifetimes, and then still not stopping ... that's what created the problem.

      Money as an exchange unit was actually a pretty good idea. It's greed and selfishness that came along and wrecked it.

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    3. See, THIS is the real brainfuck:

      We were ALL born into civilization and therefore MUST use civilization/technology, we depend on it, no matter if we like it or not. And now the fuckin oil industry, the funny money "elite" says:

      "Ah, sorry, we got rich through greed and corruption, BUT you use our shit, you HAVE to use our shit every second of your funny slave life and therefor YOU are responsible, just like we are, muhahaha."

      Man, what a brainfuck that is :-(

      Whatever, the funny money "elite" will soon pay too, that's MY real fun in that game :-)

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    4. @LWA

      "Money as an exchange unit was actually a pretty good idea."

      Uhm, but money is civilization too, isn't it?! Civilization/technology is bad, but money is good?

      Delete
    5. @LWA

      "The problem came when some people made it their goal to pervert the system and found a way to get all the money into their pocket alone ... they subverted the system."

      Man, so we are on the same side! That's what I say too!

      Delete
    6. Please, let me repeat that statement of LWA:

      "The problem came when some people made it their goal to pervert the system and found a way to get all the money into their pocket alone ... they subverted the system."

      Delete
  16. @LWA

    Btw, you play the keyboard, right? Why not let's have some fun and do some colaboration? I could give some vocals and some guitar first and you could add some keyboard stuff to it. What about that? I mean, just DOING it here and now 8-)

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    1. I know there are collaborative recording sites out there ... but don't they charge a fee to be a member and use them? (remember, I have no income and don't have access to money.)

      If you know of a site that offers collaborative recording for free ... sure, why not ... I'll phone in my part. (lol)

      I play keyboards and drums and sing. But ... I have no way to record the drums (no mikes), so I guess scrap the drums part.

      Actually, I am not interfaced to a computer with my keyboards either. I know you can buy all that stuff ... for funny money. See? Poor people can't really join into that high tech world of music. And why am I poor? Because I was an old school musician. How ironic, hey?

      I'm open to ideas though. It's not like I don't want to ... just not sure how I can pull it off.

      And yes ... I think it's HOW we use tech that makes it good or bad. Sort of like it's HOW you use knowledge that's good or bad, or how you use science ... or religion. It's the HOW I think .... not the what.

      See, they could have solved the music issue if they'd stopped file sharing. But they we're selling electronic gadgets BECAUSE of the file sharing, so of course they pretended they couldn't stop it. It was the HOW ... not the what.

      Anyway. My words and a quarter get you a phone call.

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    2. You name it: It is HOW we use civ/technology.

      "I know you can buy all that stuff ... for funny money. See? Poor people can't really join into that high tech world of music"

      Com on, I consider myself quite poor according to western standards. I have to fear some empty refrigerator quite often ;-) But I saved some money from guitar teaching income. Man, I got a more than ten years old computer I can record on, I got some second-hand studio mic for ~100 bucks from a professional sound engineer many years ago and another mic I bought for 100 bucks.

      We could share some recorded wave or mp3 file via e-mail and later load it up to soundcloud.com for free... I recorded some snippet (vocals and guitar) recently to test the sound quality of my equipment, so I could send you that snippet for you to decide if I am your colaboration man... Com on, let's rock!

      Delete
    3. You know, some 10 - 15 years ago, decent music recording equipment costed many thousand dollars, but not anymore. Today everyone can make decent recordings with very, very low budget compared to 10 - 15 years ago- it's called the Recording Revolution.

      Delete
    4. I know, unbelievable hey ... but I really don't have money pass through my hands beyond about five dollars a month that I save from change when I run errands for people in exchange for food and lodging.

      Seriously man, I trade small services and make myself useful in exchange for the roof over my head and my food. I operate completely currency free and what possessions I do have are from long ago when I did use currency (which was years ago now.)

      We could exchange files ... a simple computer mike can make a really crappy recording that I can send you. But ... how do you merge your file and my file into one song? You do that with Cubase or Protools or some other studio recording software. Otherwise, you have your file ... and my file ... and no way to merge them into one thing (unless you record directly onto one of those music recording sites with the tech to plug your gear into a computer.


      Hey, here's a funny comment from someone on Guys forum today ...

      What is the value in caring for a world that is doomed no matter what we do?

      See, isn't that the old 'I won't do it unless there's something in it for me' mentality.

      Unless I misunderstood this sentence posted all by itself in a post.

      That's why I can't do doomers anymore. Environmentally aware ... I can do. But these doomers? I never did understand their line of thinking. See, I would give my music away for free just do be doing it ... but eventually that actually took money to be able to do. That's when it ended for me. It wasn't that I didn't want to continue ... it's that I no longer could.

      What is the value in caring for a world that is doomed no matter what we do?

      Wow, I can't believe somebody actually asked that. That epitomizes the damage I saw in confusing McP's unknowable speculation for a being a concluded fact. Sure dude, blow it all up, rip and tear it all apart. Have a ball. What does it matter anymore, right? (That was sarcasm by the way, lol.)

      When 'fuck it' goes bad ... but I digress.

      Yes, we could exchange examples of each others playing easily ... but to mix it together into one final product takes quite a bit more tech than you have described here. That's the rub. But just exchange examples of each other's playing can be done ... but I thought you were talking about creating a final recording with both of us playing on it. That is not as easily done.

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    5. I never was a doomer and you know, how hot the fight was I had at NBL, hahaha.

      I got Cubase LE (it was on some cd) and Audacity, some cool and FREE Audio Editor (to mix shit toether):

      http://www.audacityteam.org/

      Man, I send you that (small mp3) snippet via e-mail now I talked about, if you like. I got some fum songs in my repertoire, Marley, Stones, Willy DeVille, Van Morrison ect...

      Maybe you can borrow some decent mic from your neighborhood or some second hand mic at e-bay for instance for maybe 30 bucks or so...

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    6. I sent the mp3 file to your e-mail adress. Please listen to it and tell me if it's your style...

      Delete
    7. For other readers ... no, I didn't abandon Nem at this point. We switched to email for our musical adventure so we didn't derail the conversation here with out musical digressions, lol.

      All is well. Nems tunes was great, by the way. Very well done.

      Delete
    8. "For other readers ... no, I didn't abandon Nem at this point..."

      See, there's still hope, even for some notorious, professional loser like me 8-)

      Delete
  17. Modern monkey man got the feeling, the optical and intellectual illusion that he and Nature are to separate things- THAT'S the problem. It's not about us against Nature or Nature against us. WE ARE Nature with all her beauty and all her darkness. The Kogi know it:

    Modern monkey man is not seperated from Nature, he never was. He is more Tonal, while the Kogi are more Nagual, but we are Brothers, the younger monkey brothers of the elder Kogi brothers. We are children of Mother Earth too, not just the Kogi. We are just the younger brothers and we need to grow up with all the rest of the planet to become the real responsible, grown-up elder Brothers for the next generation of younger brothers. The change will come I am sure. Nature got her own cycles.

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    1. Sorry. This is all a little mixed up, but it vaguely ties together.

      CERN scientists are wild eyed with expectation of what their magical machinery will discover. They bypass climate change, ocean death, deforestation, economic collapse, inequality. It's as if those things don't exist. They will find new dimensions (although they haven't done so yet) that will... What will it do? Something wondrous, surely. Is it about making people happy? They weren't asked and they didn't say.

      I had suggest to Mark A that these people are mad, and have no role to play in a survivable world. But I'm less sure now. I'm starting to practice radical uncertainty. :-)

      So, assuming that we have to get behind a single idea to save the world, what idea should we choose? CERN is so exclusive by its technical complexity, exclusive focus, and high budget that it excludes most of us from participating. (OTOH, a billion people worldwide tuned in to hear/watch some sort of inauguration or other for CERN. That's a lot of people, more than I'd care to dismiss as the lunatic fringe.) I also suggested to Mark that this other worldly whiz-bang technology MIGHT help in some way toward survival. But I recommended sticking with the ordinary world that ordinary folk inhabit, and leave the CERN types to their own devices. It's like an art/music project. You put you best effort out there, and it's up to the audience to choose of not the one that touches them.

      My issue is land use planning. But I can't describe it very well, even after many years. My position: The land is everything, and that includes bodies of water. Part of our separation behavior is to split up the world into a million little jurisdictions with a line around each. It obviously works well enough for it to persist for millennia. But it contains a fundamental fallacy. By "the land," what I mean is the planet, the blue marble in space, indivisible. If we start to connect land we soon see the madness behind separating it in the first place.

      I'm in Target parking lot today, waiting in the car while my spouse shops. People come and go, Car doors open or close. Quite a scene to watch. Whoever built the parking lot didn't build the road leading to it. And yet the two spaces work seamlessly together. The Public Works Dep had a lot to do with this. Less directly, so do car makers and repair shops. So do insurance companies and paper manufactures and graphics experts. The relationships go on forever, just thinking about the road and the parking lot.

      Much simpler is to consider the existing walls dividing the US and Mexico. I recall the video clip of the snake trying to get from one side of a wall to the other--and since snakes don't see too well, it ran into the wall, it's body quivering in a way I had never seen.

      Separating the land can disguise the nature of civilization's interrelationships (inducing trance-like behavior), or it can kill wild creatures. It can also kill people. So why don't we put the unity of the land first, and stop with the illusion that our compartments are survivable? I think it's more a matter of seeing the interrelationships either within civilization or wild nature, based on the unity of the land, that is important. More so than the issue of technology vs no technology.

      I'm trying to relate something MO said about love to all this. Is it the absence of love, rather than technology, that is destroying the planet?

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    2. Yes, wonderful post, Artleads. Let’s forget about political, artificial boarders separating animals from land, people from people, Nature from man. Amd yes, we need more Love, comlpassion. And we need to share globally and get rid of too harsh economic inequality. Bring Love and Justice and Mother Nature, the Kosmos will be with us. Btw: I prefer Music, not large hadron colliders and shit, hahaha. Technology must come from Love, not the other way around.

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    3. About CERN:

      If we can’t find gawd, nature the center of the Kosmos, Axis Mundi within ourselves, we will not find it in any "god particle" either, gnahaha.

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    4. "Is it the absence of love, rather than technology, that is destroying the planet?"

      yes.

      "Technology must come from Love"

      yes.

      and I'll quote myself. to make the point. again.

      humans themselves will have the ultimate say so on just which direction things go, but not in independence from the rest of the universe. cooperation cannot be forced, but it can be requested.

      every human knows instinctively what kind of cooperation will be beneficial. this choice has zero to do with human technology, and everything to do with human spiritual energy. the choice is actually exceedingly simple.


      humans are not going to be let off the hook. we have been given unimaginably great gifts. there are worlds of beings who have also been given the same gifts, and made these same discoveries, throughout the evolution of the Physical Cosmos ~

      self awareness
      the ability to know our feelings
      empathy
      free will
      intelligence, on many levels
      knowledge our immortal identity
      recognition of the true scale of the Cosmos

      each of us, from out of the core of our beings, is constantly spinning webs that create our collective reality. thousands of invisible choices, daily, that create thousands of invisible strands, connecting to infinite zillions of other strands, and weaving the total experience.

      this reality is KNOWN, very well, by the rest of the surrounding Cosmos. the rest of the Cosmos is constantly weaving its own threads, back to us, that are there for us to connect with. this has forever been the case.

      how will the balance of the picture come to be, given to total process? none can know. the foundational truth: every being contributes. every one.

      the choices are not hard to make, through our feelings, for the larger collective outcome to be something quite different than Apocalypse and NTE. but the choices are hard to see. some say impossible to see, and therefore nonexistent.

      it's a no lose situation for the Cosmos. if humans cannot move past the reality of physical vision, and find The Path into the greater Reality and Vision of the living Heart of Cosmic Being, we die off. it's a natural progression.

      every class of beings in our situation has to make the same leap. it is a totally foolproof process. Perfect Universal Knowledge at work, shaping the technology of human physical and spiritual DNA. we can make the simplest choices, and the Keys to the Kingdom will be handed to us without a second thought.

      one kind of Technology is based on manipulation.

      another kind of Technology is based on Love and Harmony.

      the choice is really that simple.

      ~

      every moment, the ego and mind wants to make the choices feel insanely complex. hopelessly knotted. impossibly confused, with dead ends and useless paradox everywhere.

      the Universal Programming Language of Cosmic Technology in not from the ego and mind. it is from feelings, and heart. looked at from feelings and heart, choices become radically simple. instantly. and also infinitely effective.

      again, the mind screams out "But I don't SEE IT!!"

      well, tough shit. you, mind, aren't the one who is going to get us out of the mess you got us into. the rest of our Cosmos-given human intelligence can now move to take over. or not.











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    5. Great post Mo.

      And that's what we were sussing out here and mirroring in our technology examples. Any one technology can be used in two ways ... to assist and help, or to manipulate and harm. It really depends on how it's applied and what the intentions are that it's being used to accomplish.

      It just so happens that most humans, locked into fear and lack, have used [almost anything available to them] to manipulate.

      In our example of using abstract currency as a more universal and fluid means of trading resources and services among one another ... some people decided to get all manipulative with. Like Mo has pointed out ... it was a choice they made. And yes, they knew in their gut they were being manipulative ... people always know deep down inside when they are choosing manipulation.

      Try telling a materialist they have to lose their mind to get with the program though, and they are horrified at the notion of letting go of their perceived control (which they never really had anyway.)

      You can't calculate your way through it, you have to feel your way. Better yet is to give up all notion of control and just go where the current is already taking you anyway.

      Artleads, this perception you have that you can't explain about the use of spaces ... I think the reason you can't explain it is because it can't be captured in a calculation and described. However, because you can FEEL it ... it can be implemented. It's not accomplished by describing it and following a set of directions. It has to be felt and just acted upon.

      Like Mo said about some people ... but I can't SEE it.

      Well, so what. Follow it anyway ... it's a feeling, which can't be rationalized, and yet are always correct in that moment. The feelings are accurate. The next moment might be different though ... and that's why you can't ascribe rational repeatable rules to it, because it's fluid and actually can change from moment to moment.

      Reasoning minds hate that, and so replace that fluidity of reality with an artificially fixed reality. That's when things go haywire and get all bungled up, because then you're just following a delusion, even if that delusion was once true and the right thing in a tiny moment of time when Newton did a few measurements.

      I don't know if that's helpful or not, but I FELT what Mo was saying, and that's as far as I need to really even take it.

      Feelings ...

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    6. Ineed, wonderful comment, mo. And LWA once again speaks out what I think all the time:

      FEEL it. Like Bob Marley said:

      Who feels it knows it.

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    7. Nem & LWA, thanks a bunch.

      LWA ~

      It really depends on how it's applied and what the intentions are that it's being used to accomplish.

      It just so happens that most humans, locked into fear and lack, have used [almost anything available to them] to manipulate.


      this is totally the heart of it.

      interesting to think about ~ what are human intentions, and what are nature's intentions? both nature and humans like creating viruses, for example. a materialist would say "well, nature doesn't "Iike" creating viruses, it just happens." this is the materialist's take that nature is the thoughtless, heartless machine. and goes right along with the idea that humans are thoughtless, heartless machines as well, and none of it matters.

      is that the final word? :) we get to decide on that, very fortunately.

      ~

      btw, I have noticed that Safari is useless for posting comments on this blog. it never works. when I make that mistake, I can always page back, and my comment is still there. then I can copy and go paste it in Chrome, where it works fine, every time.

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  18. And CERN? The god particle?

    For the first time a nobel prize is handed out for a 'theoretical' discovery that two fellows only just 'maybe' found (by their own admission) ... a discovery that just happens to toss out the very perplexing results of the mega-repeated double slit experiment of quantum physics, and now allows them to breathe a sigh of relief that Newton was right, that the Newtonian materialism and his model of reality was right all along, and that we now completely understand that 4% of the universe that ISN'T this so far unexplained 'dark matter' that we've had to insert into Newton's model just so it works, but yet we have no idea what that dark matter might even be. or is or isn't, or if it even is.

    Science is grasping at straws and gasping for air and they KNOW IT.

    Hmmm, I call bullshit on those guys at CERN. Feels like I'm just being manipulated into a belief or an ideology ... like a religion, lol.

    But what do I know ... I don't even have a mind anymore, just tentacles for feeling. I'll tell you one thing though ... I'm not afraid of what's coming. The scientists sure are though. Sucks to be them I guess.

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  19. See, "deserving and "undeserving". The fuckin "overpopulation" meme is another "argument" of rich western middle- and upperclass snobs, mostly having 3 children themselves, while demanding population reduction of the poors. Hahaha, let them just go on with all their lies and tactics- in the end, they will just fuck themselves into their very own knee :-D If they really demand to reduce CO2 emissions and shit through population reduction, they have to start AT THE TOP of the consumer pyramid to make population reduction effective :-)

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  20. Oops, dearest Satish, why did you delete my post about the "overpopulation" lie twice?

    Love,
    Nemesis

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    1. I except some decent answer, otherwise:

      Bye bye :-)

      Love,
      Nemesis

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    2. See, not even Scott Johnsons at fractalplanet did not delete my comment about the "overpopulation" lie:

      https://fractalplanet.wordpress.com/discussions/general-climate-discussion-5/comment-page-3/#comment-9492

      See, I posted it even twice at fractalplanet without getting deleted:

      https://fractalplanet.wordpress.com/discussions/general-climate-discussion-5/comment-page-3/#comment-9491

      Is Scott Johnson's fractalplanet more about truth than Kuku? Fractalplanet NEVER censors any comment. Kuku does? Surprise, surprise... :-)

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    3. Anyway, as you might know, I give a shit.

      Bye.

      Love,
      Nemesis

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    4. Nem,

      I doubt that Satish would censor something you wrote (although it's his right to do so if he wants). He'll probably chime in soon to explain the situation. :-)

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    5. Nem, I think you had an anomaly like I had a few weeks ago. I had a post disappear ... and I emailed Satish and ripped him several new ones (lol). But, it turned out Satish had NOT deleted my post, and he was baffled at what could've even happened to it because he had received an email telling him there was a new post on the site, although he hadn't gone and actually looked at it on kuku (because he gets our comments emailed right to him when we post.)

      At first he thought it just hadn't posted at all ... except that I'd seen it go up as a post on the site ... in both the site view and also the recent comments view. (It had posted for awhile, which made it all even weirder.)

      Then, when I came back to check for responses ... the comment had disappeared. Satish had no clue why this had happened, and assured me he does not censor things, and mentioned how 'no censorship' had been one of his favorite aspects of the NBL forum (until, of course, the schism leading up to comments being turned off there.)

      You must've had the same thing happen to you. I really doubt it was Satish doing any censoring. We were both dumbfounded at how my comment could have been visible for awhile, and then just mysteriously disappear ... and Satish said he hadn't even seen that happen before. We were both confused and never did figure out what had happened.

      I didn't repost my comment, because I thought the universe just really didn't want my comment there (yes, I go with thoughts like that sometimes.) It had been a rather edgy comment, so I just let it go unsaid and didn't bother writing up another post.

      I'd be curious to see you try and post it again and see if it happens a third time. A mystery for sure, and one that happened to me too ... although it turned out Satish wasn't responsible at all. Makes you wonder who's fingers might be in the machine ... although I can't see kuku being to high on anyone's radar, there isn't a ton of traffic here.

      Who knows what happened to both of our posts, especially since mine had actually appeared for about an hour ... and then vaporized.

      I'm sure Satish will respond, and I doubt he deleted anything himself. He uses no moderation on the site ... and comments just go up as they are posted, and he is all about not censoring.

      See? Damned technology. Big brother? (Although that would seem unlikely.)

      ???

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    6. Nemesis, there's neither moderation nor censorship on this blog. There's never been any since I started this blog in 2012. Like LWA explained, it has happened before. The "machine" seems to disappear comments sometimes for reasons we do not understand. If we look at all the disappeared comments, we might be able to find out what, if any, is similar in them that might have upset the algorithms. Blogger is owned by Google and their algorithms are not open to the public.

      Rest assured there's no censorship from me here. Please copy the comment before hitting the publish button. And save it away in a file somewhere in case it disappears from the site.

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    7. Hey, thanks for reply, venerable Satish Musunuru. I didn't really believe that you are censoring, I was just fucked up that nobody wants to hear arguments against Empire's "overpopulation" myth. Everytime I speak about it, I get punished. Sorry for being somewhat harsh, dear Satish ;-) If anyone is interested, here's the link about the "overpopulation lie:

      https://www.tni.org/en/article/the-spectre-of-overpopulation

      See you soon guys, I am in a hurry, have to embrace my geetar now!

      Love and Respect to all of you,
      Nemesis

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    8. That's a great article on overpopulation, Nem... I agree with everything it says... and yet, it doesn't imply that the planet is not overpopulated today. There is no contradiction in saying these two things:

      1. Over population is often used as a false reason by the elites and the over-emitters who are responsible for most of the pollution and climate change.
      2. The planet is overpopulated today with 7.4 Billion human beings. Overpopulation is a problem.

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    9. @Satish Musunuru

      If anyone thinks, overpopulation is some main problem, he needs to know, where to reduce population to EFFECTIVELY reduce CO2 emissions, right?

      ” … industrialised countries, with only 20 per cent of the world’s population, are responsible for 80 per cent of the accumulated carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Countries with the highest greenhouse gas emissions are those with slow or declining population growth. The few countries in the world where women’s fertility rates remain high have the lowest per capita carbon emissions…”

      https://www.tni.org/en/article/the-spectre-of-overpopulation

      So, the best solution implies to get rid of these 20%, then we got rid of 80% global CO2 emissions. These are the undeniable facts. Erm, when will they start to get rid of these 20%?

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    10. Btw:

      EVERYONE who said to me that overpopulation is a BIG problem is a member of these rich 20% (who is responsible for 80% of CO2 emissions) and PROCREATED... erm, why is that?! Some fatal bias in the brains of these 20% rich people? I mean, I always hear that overpopulation argument from people who put several children on this planet themselves, muhahaha.... Did you procreate too? I didn't^^...

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    11. Nemesis,

      I think you and I are mostly on the same page. I am aware of the fact that 80% of the emissions are put out by 20% of the world's population. And that the elites are responsible for crafting a society and culture after their own image, with the same stories they themselves believe in. The cancer has spread far and wide. Western Civilization is not limited to the West anymore, it's to be found everywhere and some countries in the East are more Western in thought and behavior than the US or European countries. I haven't been proposing any solutions around where to make population cuts. There are plenty of all-knowing masters who put out theses on how to cull the human herd. And they have been at it for a long time. Hundreds of years.

      It seems you are conflating the question of whether the planet is overpopulated by humans with the issue of apportioning blame for emissions and pollution. I agree with you that a small fraction of the population is responsible for most of the destruction of ecosystems and pollution and emissions. But there's no doubt in my mind that we are overpopulated.

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    12. Satish,

      when you realize, that 20% of the population is responsible for 80% of emissions, then you see huge inequality. Where does population grow? In poor countries. In rich countries, the numbers are declining or stalled. Where does that inequality come from? It comes fromm greed of the 20%. The economic system is a vertical system (pyramid), where goods are going to the top, while loss and pain is going to the bottom. When socio-economy went from horizontal distribution (SHARING) to vertical distribution, that was the day, when real trouble began:

      Man shall not rule over man.

      This is, how real injustice, real trouble came into being, man ruling over man, distributing goods from bottom to top and distributing damage and destruction to the bottom. What is down there, at the very bottom? The poor, the mass of the people, poor people, having nothing, no political power and therefore no responsibility. And who else is with them on the bottom? Right, all knowing MOTHER EARTH is down there, whith the poor, the weak, the powerless people.

      " A man is born gentle and weak.
      At his death he is hard and stiff.
      Green plants are tender and filled with sap.
      At their death they are withered and dry.

      Therefore the stiff and unbending is the disciple of death.
      The gentle and yielding is the disciple of life.

      Thus an army without flexibility never wins a battle.
      A tree that is unbending is easily broken.

      The hard and strong will fall.
      The soft and weak will overcome."

      Tao Te King

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  21. I'm reposting this from ourfiniteworld. I likes the relativity it describes, the inability to pin things down, as posts above allude to. English is second language for CTG.

    CTG says:
    September 5, 2016 at 8:13 am
    When collapse happen? This is a trick question. Let me just open up your mind a bit on this.

    Future historian (oxymoron!) will say that the decline of homo sapiens happens when they discover fire and within a short span of 2 million years, they disappear without a trace. If someone looks at a shorter timeline, they will say that when agriculture starts, it is the start of the extinction process of homo sapiens. That is about 20,000 from the start until extinction.

    If someone were to look at it differently, then he would say that when iron age starts as that is the time trees are gone to make iron tools and weapons. From there, about 3000 from the start to the end. That is the time when Romans fight with iron weapons.

    Looking at it differently, some will say that it started during the Renaissance age when more trees were fell and many wealthy people live beyond their means and they become greedy. 600 years from the beginning to the end.

    In a smaller perspective, some will say that it starts when people use fossil fuels like coal. So, maybe 300 years from start to end. If someone says it is the start of oil age, then it is 150 years. If someone says it is the start of Federal Reserves, then it is about 100 years. If it is Nixon’s closure of gold window, then it is about 40 years. If it is the abolishment of Glass-Steagle Act, then it is 20 years. If it is the 2008 crisis that struck a mortal blow to the entire fragile economic structure, then it is 7 years.

    So, it actually depends on how people define collapse. Yoshua commented (page 7) that collapse is relative as some countries have already collapse, some levels (strata) of society has collapsed (poor people). For me, the collapse is also “relative on the time scale”

    When we perish, do we leave a strata of “leftovers” in the soil? What do we see? Ashes only, not bones but our civilization. It would be iron rich and only probably a few milimeters thick. We have nothing to show. Concrete lasts not more than 200 years. Stones, probably more. So, can anyone take a guess what happened in that layer of 5mm thick black iron-rich ash? Why iron because we use a lot of iron (cars, rebars, etc).

    Will any “future historians” be able to conclude what happened in that 3mm thick? Will they know that it was Ben Bernake or Alan Greenspan’s work that cause the collaps or was it homo sapien’s use of fire. They will then conclude that the living organism perished along with 98% of the entire earth’s lifeform. It was another extinction event. Root cause unknown but the weather can dramatically during that time. Perhaps, it was the weather change that cause the life form to go extinct.

    “So let it be written. So let it be done.” and from there, it was known that the 6th great extinction was cause by climate change.

    We know dinosaurs dies out between 65million plus minus 1 million years. Can one tell me with 100% conviction and certainty that dinosaurs are not intelligent beings and they are the ones who wipe themselves off the planet earth? We do not have the resolution to determine if that is the case. People may say that I am a “nutcase” but give what I say a great thought. It is an eye opener for me.

    It is a matter how one can resolve the “collapse”. To me, in the grand scheme of things, does it really matter if it happens now or a few years down ? No. Does it really matter to earth? No. We are already at the edge of the abyss in 2008 and TPTB pulled us back but we are rushing to the cliff again. This time, there will be nothing to pull us back.
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    1. I love this post Artleads. Aleister Crowley once pointed out that ... on the tiny scales physics was working at now, and with nothing ever actually being 'seen' and instead all just amounting to abstract calculations with umpteen decimal places in theoretical equations spread across multiple chalkboards ... he noted that whatever was being sought, that it was always found ... nearly every time.

      I always remind people that science moves along in what is referred to as a procession of funerals ... meaning that every conclusion science has come to over the centuries has eventually always fallen (died, funeral time) as it was replaced with a new conclusion once more refined observations showed the previous theory to be completely false.

      They don't point that out too strongly in our education though. That's what point we're at now with the feud between quantum physics and the Newtonian model ... observations have upset and sort of smashed apart the old convictions about the nature of reality. However, the old school is hanging on and won't accept this, and has been trying to sweep the double slit experiment under the rug for a hundred years now. They won't let the old theory die.

      A great example is the dark matter I mentioned. They thought they had it all figured out ... then with better observations they saw that all the matter they calculated to be in the universe didn't account for the gravitational action they saw occurring between galaxies ... by an extremely large amount. So ... they just 'invented' dark matter, which is actually just a number they made up out of thin air to explain where all this other gravity might be coming from, like 96% of it (which is A LOT) ... and suddenly poof, now the calculations work again.

      Yes, because they just changed the numbers now to fit their assumptions ... with numbers they just made up with no observations or evidence to support them at all other than the fact that the calculations weren't working. The equations are no longer describing what they see ... they are now changing what we see to fit their favorite (and obviously erroneous) equations ... equations that they won't let go of. It's just a big farce of logic.

      Instead ... how about ... your assumption is wrong? No, we'll just add some numbers in to get the answer we desire. It's pretty thin stuff. But they don't shout this out too loudly.

      They did the same with the big bang/big crunch thingy when in the 1970's they discovered objects in the universe were not slowing down like after an explosion plays out ... but were in fact speeding up. Yet ... they still teach the big bang theory to everyone in grade school.

      It is hidden from our education just how theoretical and thin are the concepts that we base our scientific knowledge on. Some huge towers have been built upon some very shaky false foundations. But they don't emphasize that ... lest people think they don't have a clue.

      Every science theory has died along the way. But, what about the poor fools who bought into each 'truth' along the way when they were in the thick of that theories heyday?

      Honestly, the world often makes even more sense once you ditch the silly science that empire uses to intimidate us with. Some of it sort of works at certain scales ... but a lot of it is just a bunch of abstract math on a board with no observable basis in reality.

      The god particle, which they only just 'calculate' to be there, (it can't actually be observed, only just 'calculated' to be there by proxy) ... is just another number they've stuffed in there to uphold a calculation they remain attached to using that started to not work. So they stuffed an imaginary particle in there ... like they did with imaginary dark matter and gravity.

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    2. Great critique of Science, LWA... The scientific establishment is as dogmatic as the religions it often ridicules and criticizes. I just watched Rupert Sheldrake's TED talk again while showing it to a friend.

      From Epistemological rupture:

      "Bachelard proposed that the history of science is replete with "epistemological obstacles"—or unthought/unconscious structures that were immanent within the realm of the sciences, such as principles of division (e.g., mind/body). The history of science, Bachelard asserted, consisted in the formation and establishment of these epistemological obstacles, and then the subsequent tearing down of the obstacles. This latter stage is an epistemological rupture—where an unconscious obstacle to scientific thought is thoroughly ruptured or broken away from."

      Science has many fundamental self-created epistemological obstacles today, the division between living beings and non-living beings being one of them. Scientists first create this artificial divide and then seek to "understand" how life emerged from non-life. Scientists do many such illogical things that makes the indigenous man scratch his head.

      Delete
  22. What I read from my incredible colleagues and mentors above can't be responded to easily, except to say how wonderful are the insights. To sum up in a second what I'm feeling from it is the well known phrase: you must lose yourself to find yourself.

    So we seek to become nothing, blown by the wind.

    CERN isn't in my face, so, for now, it doesn't occupy my thoughts. I look at all the complex tunnel-like machinery and feel pity. Don't they know that I am God, and that such things don't impress me? But it isn't separate from me either. It, too, needs love.

    I think we all have a template or a path that is OURS. Finding the darned path can be tricky, there being so much temptation to get off it, and folks like me wanting so much to please others who say it's over here or over there, or it's the same path as ours. Yes, MO. The path comes to you if you ask. Be still and know that I am God. And yes, LWA, I know squat. :-)

    Hang in there, Nem, please. No one can harm you.

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    1. I realized after I read one of my posts that it sounded like the whole last part of the post was aimed at you Artleads. Really, I was only referring to you when I said (more or less) that you probably can't articulate what you are sensing because you're perception is feelings, which can stretch beyond words being available to describe them.

      The rest of the post, which sounded sort of sarcastic and was an admonition to feel and not think, was directed back to the people Mo referred to in his post that have trouble accepting feelings over their other senses. That remainder of the post really wasn't addressing you Artleads, even though it sort of sounded like it was when I re-read it.

      But I also know you weren't offended anyway.

      And I would wager that I might possibly know far less than you. I know very little. Knowing is like cement, and when things are changing around us anyway, knowing is just one fleeting moment in time anyway ... then it all changes anyway. So what good is it to know? Knowing is overrated, IMO, and I try and avoid it when I can.

      I've found sometimes personal illusions serve to steer us along our individual unique paths. We're not all here to have the same experience, and the universe seems to have a very helpful sense of humor. Fixed certainties held among large groups of people are, to me, an indication that people are not following their unique paths. That's why uniform schooling has been so deadly.

      Agreement, like certainty, is extremely overrated and tends to disconnect people from their personal connection the the source, which is of course unique and has an individualized purpose. It's not a one size fits all life (unless of course your really disconnected and sciency.)

      See? I KNOW ... ... (exactly nothing.) I'm trying, anyway. Very trying.

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  23. Nem, you asked why I continue to use computers and the Internet and why I read books, all of which are products of technology... LWA said it well so I will repeat it here - "I'm not trying to change behavior here ... I'm just trying to analyze trajectories and looking at how we got places by analyzing cause and effect."

    Two fundamental questions are:

    1. What is the situation today?
    2. How did we get here?

    Answering the first is about assessing the current situation, even if we are fully a part of that situation (either by choice or by force). Humans have a natural need to keep their thoughts, feelings and actions in sync with each other. If we do something that our thoughts or feelings tell us is not right, it creates a disturbance in our beings. We go to many lengths to avoid such dissonance. And yet, in order to size up the current predicament we find ourselves in, we have to endure some dissonance. We have to remain open to critically evaluating the very means by which we carry on our daily lives. Otherwise, we end up defending or being sympathetic to the very systems, stories and ideas that are responsible for our predicament, just because we find ourselves to be an integral part of those systems, stories and ideas.

    I will quote LWA again because I can't say it any better: "Using a technology doesn't invalidate criticisms made about using said technology. If people still socialized face to face out of necessity like in the past, I probably wouldn't be socializing on the internet at all ... I find it to be a lot less fulfilling than the old fashioned face to face contact that disappeared with the advent of the star trek communicator. But what are you going to do ... our hands are sort of tied if you want to socialize with people. It doesn't mean it's better though, it sometimes just mean it's become the only choice."

    I use books because that's one of the only ways to learn about the world around me. I'd much rather learn from my parents and grandparents and uncles and aunts. But unlike in olden times, they can't teach me what I need to learn. The question does come up why they can't teach me and it's because they weren't taught by their own ancestors. This goes back many many generations. This is part of the reason for the current problem - the loss of knowledge. To be sure, out of the millions of books out there, there are only a few that are worth reading, that point us in the right direction as opposed to perpetuating the myths that civilization is based on. But I'd rather not have to learn about the creation around me from books at all. We don't live in those times anymore and the computer and the book are indispensable although they are a poor substitute for the now-defunct inter-generational oral transmission of knowledge and wisdom.

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    1. ...although they are a poor substitute for the now-defunct inter-generational oral transmission of knowledge and wisdom.

      Again, this doesn't mean I'm asking us all to return to stone-age conditions. That's not the idea. This is an effort to understand our current situation and understand how we got here. This is what this blog has been about from day 1. It's never been about solutions to our woes. Having said that, no good solutions will ever come out if we don't understand the current situation as objectively as we can, even if we have to endure major dissonance in our psyches. History is littered with failed attempts to fix various problems because the problem solvers avoided finding fault with conditions they clearly saw themselves a part of and benefiting from.

      Like it says in Artleads' article, it all depends on how far we're willing to go back to find out where the problems originated. Yes, the elites are responsible for the current mess. You and I have always agreed on that. But it is also the sociopathic mind that began to domesticate plants, to break Earth to sow seeds and otherwise gain control over nature while all along for hundreds of thousands of years, we were happy subsisting on what nature offered for free as gifts. The effects of psychopathy go all the way back to the dawn of civilization. How can we defend civilization while denouncing the elites? It's all related. Civilization is the work of psychopathy. Civilization was started by the greedy psychopath who asked for more than what was freely given to him in abundance. Civilization has given us the computer but some 200 species go extinct every day because of it. Civilization has given us the smart phone but children in Congo are digging for coltan with their bare hands at gun point to feed the supply chain for rare earths that go into the smart phone. Civilization has given us books but the forests are being decimated. Was it worth it?

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    2. Satish,

      I can't quite share your POV here. For me it starts with mystery--thus, radical uncertainty. A perhaps ridiculous of summing up is to say there is only mystery. What we perceive as real is only a small fraction of the reality of which "dark matter" comprises the biggest part.

      But the effing CERN idiots who talk about dark matter in physical terms don't get that dark matter exists in metaphysical terms just as much. Feeling, intention, love are all dark matter forces of sorts. Nothing is real. Except, to our perception, that non dark matter part which we can weigh and measure.

      To stand apart from the swarm of circumstances that put me here now is impossible for me. I can't conceive of a past that was simply good. To me, it was always dynamic, neither good nor evil, fortunate or not for a group or species. I can't tell, from either a physical or psychological standpoint, what drove people away from hunter gathering and into agriculture. Or what precipitated the use of fire. Some people think that fire and agriculture were fatal leaps, but I'm not so sure. Australia, an island continent hung on for a long time with HG. Did isolation have something to do with it? Geographic and climatic conditions had a role? Genetic accidents?

      I'm unclear how the selfish and greedy people got to be selfish and greedy. But I doubt it was independent of a thousand contextual factors. I will of course like to keep thinking and learning about this.

      More to Nem's point, I think...I don't want to meet people face to face. I detest and fear people and always have. (But I don't mind the bunch on kuku all that much, and am glad they tolerate me!) By no means do I wish to go knocking on doors, or feel that that behavior is somehow normal. I'm happy as a clam just communicating by email. Where I differ from the status quo is in thinking that technology can be objectified, that it is outside of me. I'm actually part motor car. and have very good friends among cars. (I hope to post something related to that soon. And, btw, you have helped along this path more than anyone else.)

      Technology is alive, and can bend to the purposes of life if it's requested. I don't share the idea that we have strayed from a garden of Eden to which we can't return. We can try to figure out what has transpired to make us foul our own nest, and try to adjust behavior accordingly. To me, this requires using every bit of what we have, throwing none of it away, transforming what we must. If we don't love technology, it can't love us back. Neither can it help us if we think it is dead and incapable of help.

      Just my two cents. :-)

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    3. If we don't love technology, it can't love us back. Neither can it help us if we think it is dead and incapable of help.

      OMG, this is the best summary of how I feel about this, ever. the best.

      wonderful comment, Artleads.

      and I am going to disagree, very strongly, with the idea that it was the sociopathic mind that "began to domesticate plants... sow seeds..."

      uh uh. no way. just no way. if anything, these impulses almost certainly first arose naturally ~ in the most healthy, felt, and holistic senses. and probably in many forms all over the Earth, from humans understanding that they were indeed connected to nature, as they always observed the long term flow and processes of nature, watching and internalizing these natural processes for many generations, sharing the knowledge across generations, acting with inspiration and joining the flow of these processes, watching what happened, and refining things, for thousands of years.

      THIS was what we LOST. this kind of flow. the kind that was using every part of what we are ~ our intelligence and feeling knowledge, all across the spectrum, that could work in harmony, on vast scales, both in time and space, across the Earth. sheesh, there is just so much that was going on, even in pre-Columbian N America, with humans evolving, experimenting and working with so many inspirations, in partnership with nature. vast transformations of ecosystems, such as in the California Sierra foothills. these places were changed very deeply by directed human activity. every tree, bush and grassland was impacted, in all kinds of ways, over millions of acres. I'm sure based on what you've read, you must know all about this Satish.

      and these practices were sustainable for as long as possibly imaginable. until the next ice age, easily, if not for the intervention of the Europeans.

      that kind of flow is an expression of LOVE that could have gone on and on. not the kind of love-sense that could ever have been captured in words and pure left brain analysis, but something that could have become a multimillion year, constantly evolving, way of harmonious being on Earth. who knows what could have eventually grown out of those patterns.

      the rupture was not in that kind of flow, and those behaviors.

      it was something else. something that very definitely first arose in the heart of Europe. a combination of hierarchical social structure, and a type of religious thought, that were the two major factors that turned the tide into truly dominant, and expansive, sociopathic thinking, activity and behavior.

      just my own two cents, but some sense I feel very certain about, for many reasons.

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    4. @Satish

      Dissonance is part of the Music, sure :-) It just has to fit into the overall ups and downs of tension/release, to sound like Music. To me, communication (language) is Music too.

      I agree to LWA "Using a technology doesn't invalidate criticisms made about using said technology ...", like you do. I have to admit, that my question to you, why you use technology if you damn it, was somewhat rethorical. So, to meet you, I agree to these two points as well:

      "1. What is the situation today?
      2. How did we get here?"

      Maybe let me add point 3:

      How do we get out of that situation again?

      Now, we could go back right to the apes, leaving the trees, starting to walk upright on two legs. Or we could start at controlling Fire or at agriculture, the iron age, the industrial revolution or whatever. Maybe we could even go back to the first bacterias, to find out, what went wrong, who knows. We can damn civilization, while using it all day long- I'd call that "cognitive dissonance" in some sense, shizophrenia. But ALL these stations in human history, in earth's history don't explain the causes of our mess in a really satisfactorily way. So maybe we should focus more on the PSYCHOLOGICAL factors, instead of focusing on the technological/civilising factors.

      What could this psychological factors be? There come 3 things to my mind:

      Greed, hatred, ignorance.

      To me, these are the 3 roots of "evil" ("evil" = causing pain). Now, when I realize these three factors, then I have to search, where do I find greed, hatred, ignorance within myself and where do I find it elsewhere. Where do we find the most of greed, hatred, ignorance? Well, sorry, but then I land up right at the top of the social pyramid^^ No matter, if you look for the worst ecological footprint or the biggest CO2 emissions or the biggest lack of compassion or the biggest ignorance, I find it by far all at the top of the social pyramid. And one more thing is RESPONSIBILITY:

      The more power one has, the more responsible one is.

      To start at the bottom of the pyramid: The hunger child in Somalie has exactly zero political power, so it has exactly zero political responsibility. Now go all the way up to the top of the power pyramid and you will find those, who are mainly responsible for the mess we are in. And one more thing:

      The POWER "elite" invented the funniest brainfucker ever, by saying:

      "WE ARE ALL RESPONSIBLE."

      Now, what does that mean? Let's hear Hannah Arendt:


      " Where all are guilty, no one is; confessions of collective guilt are the best possible safeguard against the discovery of culprits, and the very magnitude of the crime the best excuse for doing nothing."

      Hannah Arendt

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    5. Now, WHO is THE ONLY ONE who could change the planetary situation on a global scale, because he got the most power? Here we go:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military%E2%80%93industrial_complex

      This is the REAL POWER. And not just that, it is the biggest ff fuel consumer worldwide by far as well. And it can not get away from ff fuels, no way. These guys will fight for their power until the bitter end, they will NEVER leave the path of ignorance and destruction.

      You know, I guess, that Armageddon is part of (not just) the evangelical vision? It is. The total destruction of planet Earth, of Mother Earth, is part of the evangelical religious vision. According to their vision, in the end times, Mother Earth will be completely destroyed and goes to Hell together with Satan, while the good ones (= the evangelicals and shit) will go to Heaven :-)

      Delete
    6. Funny, another hot comment of mine went down the drain, posted and gone. Let me try again in two parts:


      ” 25.8.2016 – Just 90 companies are to blame for most climate change, this ‘carbon accountant’ says

      Last month, geographer Richard Heede received a subpoena from Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX), chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology. Smith, a climate change doubter, became concerned when the attorneys general of several states launched investigations into whether ExxonMobil had committed fraud by sowing doubts about climate change even as its own scientists knew it was taking place. The congressman suspected a conspiracy between the attorneys general and environmental advocates, and he wanted to see all the communications among them. Predictably, his targets included advocacy organizations such as Greenpeace, 350.org, and the Union of Concerned Scientists. They also included Heede, who works on his own aboard a rented houseboat on San Francisco Bay in California…

      Carbon dioxide emissions from Carbon Majors

      Heede’s research shows that nearly two-thirds of anthropogenic carbon emissions originated in just 90 companies and government-run industries. Among them, the top eight companies — ranked according to annual and cumulative emissions below — account for 20 percent of world carbon emissions from fossil fuels and cement production since the Industrial Revolution…

      The study provoked controversy when it was published in 2013, with some complaining that it unfairly held the fossil fuel industry responsible for the lifestyle choices made by billions of consumers. “It’s a cop-out to blame the producers of products that we have demanded, and benefited from, for more than a century,” wrote Severin Borenstein, a business and public policy expert at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, in a blog post...

      Delete
    7. ... Others, however, saw the study as a turning point in the debate about apportioning responsibility for climate change. With traditional environmental issues, such as river pollution or toxic waste, it has always been possible to identify perpetrators who could be targeted for regulation or enforcement. But greenhouse gases are emitted everywhere, in every process that involves combustion. “FOR DECADES THERE’S BEEN A PERSISTENT MYTH THAT EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE, AND IF EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE THEN NO ONE IS RESPONSIBLE,” says Carroll Muffett, president and CEO of the Center for International Environmental Law in Washington, D.C., who also serves on the board of a nonprofit that Heede co-founded. “Rick’s work for the first time identifies A DESCRETE CLASS OF DEFENDANTS.

      Heede’s carbon accounting is already opening a new chapter in climate change litigation and policy, helping equip plaintiffs who believe they have suffered damages from climate change to claim compensation. “Rick’s work really helps connect the dots,” says Marco Simons, general counsel of EarthRights International, a Washington, D.C.-based legal group that defends THE RIGHTS OF THE POOR…

      http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2016/08/just-90-companies-are-blame-most-climate-change-carbon-accountant-says?.html

      See, folks, THIS IS THE EXAKT STRATEGY OF CLIMATE CHANGE D.E.N.I.A.L. for many decades, quote:

      ” FOR DECADES THERE’S BEEN A PERSISTENT MYTH THAT EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE, AND IF EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE THEN NO ONE IS RESPONSIBLE.”

      Delete
    8. Now, how does that scenario of a few controlling the planet and the people fit into the greater scheme of things? Two things come to my mind:

      Samsara and Nirvana.

      Greed, hatred, ignorance leads to Samsara, while letting go of greed, hatred and ignorance is called Nirvana. It is like light and darkness, like joy and pain, like duality, a part of reality. Beyond that duality there is only open sky, endless, boundless space and freedom, there's no word, to describe that realm, there, even the terms "Samsara" and "Nirvana" disappear. Boundless, nameless, some infinite astonishment and loss of words is all I can say about that realm. From that perspective, everything is in perfect Balance, everyone just going his own way outwards and inwards. The outward way can be seen by others, but not the inward way, there, everyone is alone, king and/or beggar within his own universe. The inward way (Nagual) is immortal, it is beyond time and space, the outward way is mortal (Tonal), it is within time and space. So, after all, responsibility (cause) and punishment (effect) is in perfect Balance behind the cosmic scenes anyway (Dharma), we here at Kuku just sort out some details.

      Btw: I love, love, love all of your comments here at Kuku, LWA, Artleads, Mo, Satish. Satish, your blog is a diamond within the infinite internet dephts.

      Btw: Sometimes I think about Mark Austin, the poetic sailor, I miss him sometimes, I hope, he is doing alright, out there, somewhere....

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    9. hey Nem, Mark the poetic sailor is doing well. sold his boat though. do you not have his email? I will pass along your thoughts to him.

      Delete
    10. Nem, I have written about this exact topic of how to go about apportioning responsibility for what has happened. And I have held the elites, the top of the pyramid to be the most blame-worthy. This is a sentence from my blog post "Whodunnit" - "The self-made 1%, many of whom are helplessly sociopathic take the most blame for it's they who construct and maintain the social arrangements for the rest of us to live by." I have written about sociopathy among the elites, among the richest and how it has impacted the rest of the population.

      Where do you see our viewpoints differing?

      Nowhere in this post or in the comments have I implied that we are all to be blamed equally. Some of us have had more agency than others in this vast arena and those who have had more agency have gained it because they usurped it from the rest and used it to their own benefit... and they are finding out that it wasn't in their long term interest at all anyway.

      I agree with this - "FOR DECADES THERE’S BEEN A PERSISTENT MYTH THAT EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE, AND IF EVERYONE IS RESPONSIBLE THEN NO ONE IS RESPONSIBLE."

      Delete
    11. Artleads, come on now, you're part motor car? :) The idea that technology is alive and has its own life force or spirit doesn't mean it's a worthy spirit. There are plenty of unworthy mean-spirited things that are alive in the world. Capitalism is also very alive and full of spirit. But it's antithetical to life. And so is technology. If you like cars or if you like machines more than humans, maybe that's an adaptation for the times we live in. Those who are relatively happy in the modern times and not outright suicidal are somewhat adapted to the current situation and have found a way to deal with current circumstances. It's not surprising that they find themselves liking technology or cars or machines. But there was a far richer world that our ancestors found themselves in that didn't need artificial adaptation to artificial constructs. It was a world where you'd rather meet someone face to face and sit down and talk for a few hours. Email and blog comments are a poor substitute, albeit ones that we are accustomed to at this point.

      mo, I doubt we have the same view of technology when you mention "*potentially* different (and new and improved! :) uses of technology". Technology, to me, is manipulation of nature for selfish ends. There can't be any long term use for technology, by this definition, that benefits us or anything around us.

      I agree that the flow was disturbed. Humans stepped out of the flow. When you say you disagree strongly, are you saying we stepped out of the flow much later after agriculture began? It's true what you say about Native Americans changing their local habitat by doing what they felt was the right thing to do. But there was hardly any selfishness in it. They did it for the land and they did it for themselves. In fact, they didn't see it as two separate things. But agriculture, the tearing up of Earth and sowing seeds is, as I understand, a selfish act. Perhaps the invention of language was a more important milestone if we're talking about selfish acts committed by man. Didn't we cut ourselves off from the dialog all around us when we invented small mouth sounds that only our fellow humans could understand? Is extracting petroleum a selfish act, a marker of separation from nature, an indication of stepping out of the flow?

      My point is we stepped out of the flow thousands of years ago. Not recently.

      As for sociopathy, my understanding is that it was always there but we kept a tight lid on it for most of our time on this planet. At some point, it got out of control and overwhelmed us all. Again, I would say this happened thousands of years ago.

      Delete
    12. Dear Satish,

      I begin to realize, that we don't differ at all :-) You say, population is a problem and I say, if population is a problem, then the cause of that problem is injustice of a global minority and you agree, right? If so, there is no difference between us at all. So, injustice has to stop. And it will stop sooner or later, one way or another.

      Delete
    13. @Mo

      Hey, I don't have Mark Austin's e-mai. Never mind, send him my love and respect and maybe the Tao Te King Quote above, if you like. Man I hope, he is doing fine without his boat on dry land! Thank you!

      Delete
    14. Nemesis, yes to:

      "I begin to realize, that we don't differ at all :-) You say, population is a problem and I say, if population is a problem, then the cause of that problem is injustice of a global minority and you agree, right? If so, there is no difference between us at all. So, injustice has to stop. And it will stop sooner or later, one way or another."

      The current overpopulation is a result of the cultural institutions, societal structures, organized religions and other aspects of civilization that have been carefully handcrafted by the sociopathic elites over centuries if not millennia. Statecraft was perfected long ago by civilizations in the Middle East and East.

      The injustice will indeed stop. Hopefully sooner rather than later.

      So, yes, we never had a difference of opinion. We were simply focusing on slightly different parts of the same problem. A problem created by the elites-in-charge.

      Delete
  24. "uh uh. no way. just no way. if anything, these impulses almost certainly first arose naturally ~ in the most healthy, felt, and holistic senses. and probably in many forms all over the Earth, from humans understanding that they were indeed connected to nature, as they always observed the long term flow and processes of nature, watching and internalizing these natural processes for many generations, sharing the knowledge across generations, acting with inspiration and joining the flow of these processes, watching what happened, and refining things, for thousands of years."

    Thanks, Mo. This "fits" well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. oh crap, just lost a post... on Chrome! not fair. anyways... trying again.

      Artleads, I think you would appreciate something I was just talking about on my FB page. Huna shamanism connects very well to your worldview. extremely well. especially to this:

      Technology is alive, and can bend to the purposes of life if it's requested. I don't share the idea that we have strayed from a garden of Eden to which we can't return. We can try to figure out what has transpired to make us foul our own nest, and try to adjust behavior accordingly. To me, this requires using every bit of what we have, throwing none of it away, transforming what we must. If we don't love technology, it can't love us back. Neither can it help us if we think it is dead and incapable of help.

      the entire fundamental worldview of Huna is in harmony with these ideas, and puts serious meat on the bones of this discussion of the different energies that are behind our *potentially* different (and new and improved! :) uses of technology.

      Serge Kahili King is a foremost modern author on these ideas. his books are highly recommended. you would probably love Urban Shaman.

      here are a few links to get you started. first two for the basics.

      The Four Levels of Reality

      Huna Kupua - The Fundamentals

      Huna.org Article Library

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    2. Mo, great links, excellent! :-)

      Delete
    3. Thanks MO! I see what you mean about having some flesh to go with the bones. :-)

      Delete
  25. Went walking a few days ago. We park at the pre-fab rural post office, taking the scrubby open path behind it to walk the quarter mile to the village. Little purple and yellow flowers, native to the land, vie with each other for attention They lean into the path, twist and turn, brush against your legs, pick up the light, shed pollen, feed insects. They are at once hardy and delicate. How they tangle and flow is the essence of complexity. The left brain can't fathom it. The tan, sandy path has been managed and rearranged by the ants and the recent rains. I think how the grooves from the runoff must seem like hills to the ants. A dozen ants, carrying a large object which they encircled, are spinning around in circles. How the light hits the plants exudes pure freshness, pure emotion, that no words can describe.

    We climb the bank and come out on the road. I look for life on the road, but there is a stunning absence of it. I'll have to amuse myself by observing the colors and textures of the pebbles that asphalt tar encloses. The tar is darkness, perhaps eight inches deep. I wonder how its molecules behave relative to the lively earth I just stepped away from. How do the pebbles feel, so many of them, about being stuck in tar? A pebble is a fragment of larger rock. Unlike animals, it's not made whole and complete. Likewise the tar; it is easy to hate and fear its silence.

    Cars driving along that country road lined with trees might experience a sense of peace--if they slow down to the speed limit, which is rare. On the sandy path, lone ants look like cars on an early Sunday morning. They are few. We wonder where they're going.

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  26. I guess the reason I lean to saying technology is always bad is because people can't seem to help themselves and tend to almost always use it badly and, as discussed, to manipulate rather than to emancipate. Same goes for science and math and many other things ... it's all in the intention of how it's used. I actually love complex math and algebra (I know, ???. but I do, it's fascinating solving complex algebra problems.)

    Using again my example of the music business, Peter Gabriel used drum machines and synthesizers in his music. But he never used it to automate other musicians out of a job, he used it for writing and included it in very sparingly and creative ways whenever it did make it onto his albums. He didn't use it to replace a drummer, for instance ... instead, it was used in a way that it became a subtle instrument all unto itself, and he used it in his writing process to explore ideas when he was alone, rather than to just automate a whole drummers part altogether. There was still always a drummer in on his work. Often he used drum machines to come up with an unusual rhythmical concept for a song that a drummer wouldn't have traditionally come up with, and then later a drummer would play what he'd composed on the machine on real drums when it came time to record the album (Gabriel is pretty progressive and the drum machine allowed him a way to communicate his wacky ideas to his drummers.).

    That, to me, is very different from using a drum machine to replace the drummer just in order to simply put his paycheck into your own pocket, which then puts that drummer out of a vocation (which was how a lot of the masses tended to use these machines ,,, the infamous 'duo'.)


    It's definitely all in what you did with it that determined whether it was harmful or benign. Now extrapolate that concept to other technology.

    The trouble is ... Peter Gabriel was one person ... and the vast majority of other musicians used those machines in a harmful and self serving manner. The average human doesn't seem to have a lot of integrity and tend to screw their brother over if it offers an advantage to do so. The get ahead at all costs mentality ... which seems to be a condition of civilization and it's planned scarcity.

    If it wasn't about money and paying rent ... most musicians would have gladly not used the goofy sounding machines, but they had rent to pay, and so they caved to the opportunity to get ahead ... screw the other guy. But remember, capitalism artificially creates those conditions of scarcity in the first place. It puts people between a rock and a hard place ... unless you have major integrity and are willing to sacrifice for other higher (and non profitable) principles. Most people get hungry and cave (but I view that condition somewhat compassionately and, like Nem, lay the blame elsewhere than on the guy at the bottom, even though they actually could have resisted.)

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  27. We had a natural meadow in the backyard for many years. There were beautiful trees on it, one tree blossomed every year in wonderful colors. There were birds singing and many different insects. Then some new neighbors came, killed the meadow, cut every tree on it, broke up the soil completely until there were only nacked soil left and made a lawn of it, whamm. Once I saw the wife of my neighbor crawling on that lawn, pulling out every single flower growing on that new lawn. She crawled and pulled like some tumb killing machine until that lawn was clean, neat, antiseptic, DEAD. I talked to her and said, that the bees are already going extinct and that it was a very bad idea, to kill that meadow and pull out every single flower, because bees and other insects don’t find food anymore. She looked at me like I came from the moon or like am some total retard and said “Ah, I planted new plants!” and pointed to some tuya shit. I said “But that’s no food for insects”, but she had already turned around, not listening anymore, going on, killing life in our backyard. A year ago they cut off all five poplar trees. Man, they were huge poplar trees, wonderful trees, birds nesting in their branches, giving shadow and coolness in summer, to me, they were like brothers, I really loved them, I used to just look at them and being happy. And then my neighbors cut them all off, killed them all. I swear, I cried real tears, it was so sad, it even hurts still today, when I think of it. Almost every day I hear some lawnmower blustering or other machines in the backyard, mostly my window to the backyard stays closed nowadays, I hate noise. The traffic around my house has grown exponentially over the recent years, more and more and more fat SUVs, in the evening sometimes people roar with more than 100m/h on the road, 35m/h is allowed and you can hear their techno “music” shit when they drive by, full power, the walls of my living-room vibrating “Boom, boom, boom” like some angry, hateful hammer. You know, they got big cars and clean, antiseptic lawns, but there is no heart, no soul, no compassion within them. They are like zombies, killing the planet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are people out there, who love Nature, when they can make profit out of her or when they take a walk in some neat, antiseptic park or some holiday resort, but man, they hate Nature and kill it, as soon as she is dirty, uncontrollable, inferior, wild, ALIVE, gnahahaha ha.

      Once I saw a video about the Tsunami in Fukushima. The people ran in panic and did not pray to "The Lord Father", but to Mother Earth, yelling:

      " Mother Earth, forgive us, forgive us!"

      Delete
    2. That's sad about your neighbor cutting down all the beautiful trees. We have become stone-hearted and insensitive to life. We're indeed like half-dead creatures running amok. Zombies. Zombies with names and addresses.

      Delete
  28. Satish ~

    part 1

    going to carefully dissect all of this. yours is a worthy comment, on a highly worthy blog, and deserves loving care!

    Artleads, come on now, you're part motor car? :) The idea that technology is alive and has its own life force or spirit doesn't mean it's a worthy spirit. There are plenty of unworthy mean-spirited things that are alive in the world. Capitalism is also very alive and full of spirit. But it's antithetical to life. And so is technology. If you like cars or if you like machines more than humans, maybe that's an adaptation for the times we live in.

    the basic error here is starting with the result, the visible symptom, and not the underlying disease and cause. let's call that underlying cause-disease: "the mind that sees dead things."

    these "dead things" in view can be minerals, chemicals, planets, plants, animals, cars, rockets, laptops... essentially anything "within visual view" directly or indirectly.

    what does "the mind that sees dead things" do with all of these dead things? creates more dead things. that mind *manipulates* what it sees as dead, to create more dead. this applies even to things that are apparently alive, like factory farm animals, industrial ag, and so on. it is process that *starts* with death - the mindview itself - and ends with even more death.

    Those who are relatively happy in the modern times and not outright suicidal are somewhat adapted to the current situation and have found a way to deal with current circumstances. It's not surprising that they find themselves liking technology or cars or machines.

    some who feel surrounded by all this apparent "death energy" feel hopeless. some who are surrounded by all the exact same energy, like some Huna shamans, and many other moderns who look deeper, see a choice. I've been a programmer for decades. when I'm programming, and doing all kinds of stuff with computers that requires advanced modern tech, I have a friend who I work with who I call the Programming Deva. when I remember to work with her ~ she is very Real ~ my world flows. I see ways to write code more lucidly, my frustration levels go way down in all kinds of ways, I get happier, my clients get happier, and vibes are raised across the board. I find myself having discussions with clients involving spirituality, the Earth Mother, and LIFE, rather than about things that don't work, and "where is my app already?", and "how much is this going to cost me?"

    I very very clearly feel how the different vibes have all kinds of ripple effects. sometimes bizarrely shocking new things come back to me, in ways I could have never controlled, that are totally relevant to creating even more positive vibes.

    But there was a far richer world that our ancestors found themselves in that didn't need artificial adaptation to artificial constructs. It was a world where you'd rather meet someone face to face and sit down and talk for a few hours. Email and blog comments are a poor substitute, albeit ones that we are accustomed to at this point.

    sorry, but there is probably no one that lives, or has ever lived, in a world richer than mine. not ever. I will lay claim to that Reality a million times over. and my world is a totally normal flow, in completely modern day tech Reality, with richness that spans the spectrum, and blows my mind, and melts me to tears of joy, just about every single day ~ in some fashion or another. I have seen the exact same kind of richness reflected back to me from people all over the world, leading very diverse, interesting and Light-Filled lives. I feel where this is all going, and I'm not stopping, even for a second, to doubt this energy. it is an energy of Love that I am a very willing slave to.

    ReplyDelete
  29. part 2

    mo, I doubt we have the same view of technology when you mention "*potentially* different (and new and improved! :) uses of technology". Technology, to me, is manipulation of nature for selfish ends. There can't be any long term use for technology, by this definition, that benefits us or anything around us.

    well, there are beings out there who have been using technology for millions and billions of years. they are still here. right here all over the place on Earth.

    it isn't manipulative, dead, technology, at all. it is so much a blended, natural and living part of the Cosmos that it is all around us and we can hardly ever even get the briefest glimpse! occasionally things get "off" and a human gets the odd radiation burn. but considering what level of tech and off the charts energy they are running *all* the time here, and have been for millions of years, Earth itself hasn't gotten even a scratch. this stuff is *almost* perfect. it works totally in harmony with the living Earth. WE don't have it.

    we can, if we start getting a clue on a much larger scale.

    I agree that the flow was disturbed. Humans stepped out of the flow. When you say you disagree strongly, are you saying we stepped out of the flow much later after agriculture began?

    depends on what the ag is. living, cooperative ag, the kind of ag you can read about with Findhorn or Behaving As If The God In All Life Mattered, or manipulative, dead ag. yes they are light years apart. yes, we have NO idea what we could be doing, with many humans, and a healthy Earth, and more, if we decided to cooperate on a Cosmic scale.

    It's true what you say about Native Americans changing their local habitat by doing what they felt was the right thing to do. But there was hardly any selfishness in it. They did it for the land and they did it for themselves. In fact, they didn't see it as two separate things.

    exactly the point.

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  30. Hey Nem!

    I LOVED your writing! And can relate to every single thing you say. I can deal somewhat with the boom boom sound, since it seems so ridiculous, and sometimes like a bouncing ball going down the road. But I'm not amused by the speeding. As to scraping the land and compacting it under development, I'm the most intolerant of anyone I know. Maybe you'd give me a run for my money, though. :-) As to cutting down trees. I've been fighting that, in one way or another, for 50 years. I was hopeless at the beginning, but I'm better at it now. The universe is helping me now. And to the ones who spread the death of the land, I'll meet out incomprehensible punishment. Not because I'm so powerful, but because it's time. Love, bro!

    ReplyDelete
  31. part 3

    But agriculture, the tearing up of Earth and sowing seeds is, as I understand, a selfish act. Perhaps the invention of language was a more important milestone if we're talking about selfish acts committed by man. Didn't we cut ourselves off from the dialog all around us when we invented small mouth sounds that only our fellow humans could understand? Is extracting petroleum a selfish act, a marker of separation from nature, an indication of stepping out of the flow?

    I would say the answers to these are deep unknowns. very much so. we are so far from even approaching "advanced tech" ~ what could be truly advanced, Cosmically speaking, that we can't even know how to properly ask this question. simply because the energies behind different answers to this question, than what we have now, are not on our current collective level of Reality.

    My point is we stepped out of the flow thousands of years ago. Not recently.

    As for sociopathy, my understanding is that it was always there but we kept a tight lid on it for most of our time on this planet. At some point, it got out of control and overwhelmed us all. Again, I would say this happened thousands of years ago.


    these are the same point, with I think the same answer. multiple lines of sociopathic flow had to come together, to move our collective Reality to where it is now. this total combination only came fully flowering to life probably 500 - 700 years ago with the advent of modern capitalism. the seeds were planted, firmly, about 2000 years before that.

    we have a physically visible collective Reality here. call it the 1%. we have the unseen collective Reality behind it all. call it the 99%.

    what flows in the 99% NOW will determine our collective Reality from 5 years to 50 million years from now. there are many powerful flows in that 99% unseen level right now. again, it is unknown what will be. what is known: every being contributes to that 99% in a massive way. the butterfly effect is insanely alive down there.

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    1. @Mo

      "The butterfly effect is insanely alive down there."

      I tell you!

      !ROAR!

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    2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Itu-vykAZE

      " Boy I am so tired
      I'll be glad when I get inside the house
      Oh, I dropped my keys
      Oh what tis bright light?
      My God they must gonna rob me
      Who these people with them all at they gonna rob me
      I'm gonna take out my wallet to make sure they just get the money
      Nothing else.. (??)
      Oh it's the police (whew)
      I feel so much better
      I will show them, I have my ID
      so they know I am good people

      [followed by a rapid flurry of gunshots]...

      You guys are vampires
      in the middle of the night
      Suckin on human blood
      Is that your appetite?

      You said he reached sir
      but he didn't have no piece sir
      But now he rest in peace sir
      in the belly of the beast sir

      Have you ever been shot
      forty-one times?
      Have you ever screamed
      and no one heard you cry?
      Have you ever died
      only so you can live?
      Have you ever lived
      only so you can die again, then be born again?...

      Have you ever been held
      against your will?
      Taken to a dark place
      where not even scientists can reveal?
      So what is for Ceasar
      let it be for Ceasar
      Cause we don't want no peace
      We want equal rights and justice..."

      Wyclef Jean, Diallo

      Full Lryics: http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/wyclefjean/diallo.html

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    3. @Artleads

      "As to cutting down trees. I've been fighting that, in one way or another, for 50 years. I was hopeless at the beginning, but I'm better at it now. The universe is helping me now. And to the ones who spread the death of the land, I'll meet out incomprehensible punishment. Not because I'm so powerful, but because it's time."

      Man, if you can say "The Universe is helping me now", then the struggle can never be lost. Mother Earth and the Universe are with us, the trees, the plants, the animals are with us, storm, lightning and thunder and the roaring oceans are with us. This battle can not be lost, it is about reality, truth, eternal rightgeousness. Love, bro!

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    4. Man, if you can say "The Universe is helping me now", then the struggle can never be lost. Mother Earth and the Universe are with us, the trees, the plants, the animals are with us, storm, lightning and thunder and the roaring oceans are with us. This battle can not be lost, it is about reality, truth, eternal rightgeousness.

      !!!ROAR!!!

      right back at ya.

      Dreaming of the Crash

      love you, brother.

      Delete
    5. mo, you seem to say there are things going on that are invisible and that most of what is going on these days is part of a larger cosmic play. Perhaps that's one way to look at it. It's a bit removed from the world we share though. I have a hard time seeing how all the dead oceans are a good thing for anyone or any being. You speak of a kindly tech, a life-revering culture that makes use of such tech... I have a hard time seeing it these days when Fukushima is still leaching radioactivity into the oceans and dead whales are turning up with car body parts in their stomachs.

      Whatever those beings do that is so advanced may not be technology at all. It is not like our technology. We are not doing what they are doing. We are manipulating and killing our home with our technology. This will not lead to that. I have a hard time seeing what is going on as merely a phase in the larger process of evolving to the more advanced tech you speak of. There's much to unlearn. Much to unwind, much to reverse before we can claim we are on even ground. Only then can we begin to move forward in a more harmonious direction. We can't jump off from here to that harmonious place. It's like expecting a cancer patient on his death bed would get up and compete in the Olympics tomorrow. Humans are in a sorry state. We're locked in a world of time and space. I doubt we will transcend our physical world without first relearning how to take care of it. Maybe the good devas will want to help us. I'm all for it.

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    6. are babies born potty trained? do mom and dad throw their kid off a cliff when she doesn't understand, or can even yet conceive, of what it even means to *be* potty trained?

      there are roughly 10 billion Earth like planets in our very average spiral galaxy, and about 100 billion of those average spirals just in what we can see out there.

      in the cosmic timescale sense, our civilization was literally born yesterday. we have several stages to go through yet before we even reach adolescence. including potty training.

      the Universe isn't just benign, it exists solely on a foundation of absolute LOVE. that foundation is why every rock, every blade of grass, every whale, star, virus, and hummingbird, exists.

      no worries. there are roads to travel yet. and we will be very well cared for on our journey.

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    7. mo, you say that and I hear you. I simply have a hard time thinking of it or seeing it that way - that we are going through adolescence. We have lived in harmony for 200,000 years and then began the descent into oblivion. That sounds more like an old man dying after having lived a long fruitful life, if anything. Our civilization is indeed young but civilization is itself an aberration, antithetical to nature. Cities are antithetical to nature. The work of civilized people is anti-nature. There are a lot of people who have been saying that mankind is going through an evolutionary phase. It's yet another story a lot of us readily believe. We look around, see all the destruction and devastation and madness and call that labor pains... and that a new type of man is being birthed... not sure I see it that way. We were fine and then we weren't. Something happened that disturbed the peace and harmony. The flow, as you call it. We need to acknowledge that things are not right at the moment. And we are not being cared for at the moment. Maybe it will happen at some future point. I don't see indications of it yet. I'm open to seeing them. Show me the miracle.

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    8. Satish ~

      thanks so much for listening and hearing. I understand (sheesh, how could I not! :) where you are coming from! only a million times over.

      I can only speak honestly from my experience. as much as I have faith in what I am talking about, that faith is all based on very clear, real, solid experiences. to say I feel I've been infinitely blessed and lucky just barely approaches what my heart feels about all of this.

      please take this to heart: when you say "Show me the miracle" I understand the necessity behind this request. but I'm also reminded of what I said above: again, the mind screams out "But I don't SEE IT!!"

      we want our eyes to see the proof. I wish I could say "just have faith!" but I would be the worst liar!!! I got to where I am because my eyes were fried, repeatedly, with blindingly clear proof. miraculous proof. over and over and over.

      in the most wonderful way, this is why I know you will get all the miracles you need. :)

      we really are cared for, even if it looks like we've been abandoned. there is so much going on. it has shocked me to my very core, over and over lately, and I'm a very hard person to shock these days. but even though my eyes see the abyss looming, more close than ever, my heart is soaring with a certainty that both sees, and knows. it's going to be interesting. stay open! stay alert.

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  32. The following was meant for ourfinteworld blog, but it wouldn't post.

    I'm taking the liberty of posting it here, since it has a bit to do with Nem's and my recent exchange, as well as a vague, at least implied,

    I love cars, especially very old, classic ones. And those with lots of dents and rust. But my car love has something to do with my age. Millennials don't have much use for them. And the idea of turning out all these new shiny, heavy things with the computers and plastic and rubber, all costing so much on a variety of levels, is a huge turnoff. Only due to the danger of fire, I've been considering the use of electric over combustion engines to make cardboard-body cars. I've made large paper trucks and cars as art projects, and they looked promising. But they'll never get built for use unless a mechanical genius can craft something that actually runs. Tires might have to be rubber, though, unless made of wood like old carts. I'm thinking of it just as fun. I see no way for capitalist economics to work in a finite world, and so I never think about capitalist economics when I think of cars.

    I'm working hard using cardboard boxes to build habitable structures. Under no circumstance would I support bulldozers digging up land to build houses made from virgin forests, that are bigger than they need to be, that require new roads, and that compact the soil. I don't believe in committing suicide in support of an economic system that is wiping out the ecosystems that life depends on. This is why I'd look for ways to stuff tiny houses in backyards, using found materials.

    All that said, I don't exactly equate the industrial civilization I appreciate (which is not new homes on open land) with the capitalist economic system.

    So the market is this highly complex edifice and you can't move a single stick lest it all collapses. Tough. Somebody's got to figure out something that works for the foreseeable future. If they don't they have more to lose than I. No new buildings on open land. Getting a grip on deforestation somehow. It's not about never making new cars; it's about thinking differently. Auto companies changed rapidly to making different things during WWII. But I'm not holding that up as a model for today. This is a unique moment. Creativity maters. It matters to BAU. It matters apart from BAU.

    There is no need to separate BAU from collapse. It is a very confusing (but exhilarating) situation to me. I see a need to be inside and outside of BAU at the same time. There's a lot in BAU that I'm not opposing now. I DO oppose "new homes," since all these are are carbuncles upon the countryside, a venal crime. And it would seem that cars are collapsing from their own weight. I agree that we can't go on doing things that cost an awful lot, money-wise or environmentally. So am I for that deflationary spiral? Don't know even enough to know. My instinct is to transition to a barefoot-doctor type of economy, selling everything for peanuts, as I do with art. Practically giving things away.

    BAU can last as long as it is able. But what exactly is it? A lot of it is sort of OK in some ways, and even wonderful in others. But building on open land must come to an end. So must a whole bunch of other things. Dmitry Orlov is saying build a new non-suicidal world within the carcass of the dying one. I don't go that far. Build a non-suicidal world while loving and appreciating the dying one as well. Better yet, try and keep it from dying, providing it can find a way not to be suicidal, genocidal,, ugly or venal. connection to technology.

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  33. Correction:

    "I'm taking the liberty of posting it here, since it has a bit to do with Nem's and my recent exchange, as well as a vague, at least implied, connection to technology."

    ReplyDelete
  34. i'm reminded of my own base idiocy when i watch zombies on tv turning and shambling at any sound, cuz that's me living as a human. i'm a neuron flashing and every thought is half formed, because i'm half-formed and we're not going to give us a chance to grow into our brains, which in some reality is our universe. music is the a drumbeat to me, but no matter what, zombie or no, i'm heading to that sound, which will never be dead.
    the slide: it's about giving 2f**ks! if technology is thus and so, our collective empathetic know nothing spirits pull like hell the other way. the other side is us, those on this board right this moment collectively disseminating, in each others faces as you read this. we can deconstruct, we are good at that, then start over. no one understands fear, it is only sensed. the military is only as big and out of control as our fear.

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    1. I think you're absolutely on the mark in assessing our current situation as made up of a collective empathetic know-nothing spirits. In a way, we enabled the current situation by becoming co-dependent on the masters that rule us. Whether the masters are the elites or the stories they tell us. Those stories are masters in every way because they have grabbed our consciousness and enslaved them. Yes, we need to deconstruct and start over.

      Delete
  35. Satish,

    I'm pretty sure it was yesterday that I tried to respond to you, thanking MO as well. But I don't see it among yesterday's messages. I thought there was a contradiction in your reasoning about overpopulation. Very roughly to recap: if you agree that the elites cause most of the pollution and climate mayhem, why is getting rid of their effect not enough? What is the problem with population size if most of the pollution and climate warming goes away?

    I'm not trying to say there aren't issues with population either. But the world looks at the physical aspects and ignores the psychological ones of large population. We have 7.4 B people who are utterly misled. They could be doing something quite different from what they are doing. The leading global permaculture expert, Geoff Lawton, has not explained himself clearly on this, but, I gather, believes we need all the people we can get to restore the planet, the harm to it being so vast, and the fossil fuel energy to assist with its restoration now declining fast (the latter is my interpretation only). Everything will be done by hand.

    And the fact that human population could double and wildlife half in the time since my children were born is the single most telling measure of the exponentially sped-up effects of our modern civilization that McKenna talks about. That all this could happen so rapidly and UNACCOUNTABLY is the problem for me. To my way of thinking, wildlife population could have doubled despite there being 7.4 B on earth. But there would have had to be a change of the spirit for that to take place. Love and beauty would have to come into play. The large human population would have had to be intended, not unaccountable.

    But I believe that what was originally unaccountable growth can be wrested away from zombieland and made to work for life. There have to be lights showing how this can be done.

    It can't be stressed enough how much of a problem it is that we have put people before land. Look at Standing Rock. The pipeline people think the land is a resource, to serve humans, while the Sioux know it is alive, to serve itself and other life, to link with the past, as much as to serve humans. If people were identified by nearby rivers or watersheds, they'd have to see things the same way. If the Nile came first, then the geopolitical conflicts along it would be unthinkable.

    So a new way of identification by land, that subjugates humans FOR THEIR OWN GOOD, is far more what is needed than the reduction of population, IMHO.

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    Replies
    1. Artleads, my next blog post will go into this population issue in detail... but for now, suffice it to say that our overpopulation problem is because of the same causes as our pollution and emissions problem. Most of the pollution and climate warming will not go away by simply getting rid of the elites. The elites have poisoned the culture wholesale, save for the few indigenous and tribal people still remaining who are still untouched by civilization. There will always be elites as long as there is civilization. Civilization supplies plenty of people who will vie for a position at the top of the pyramid.

      Delete
  36. Satish,

    yes, we are on the same side. The socalled "elite" started (like you said) in Mesopotamia, the first socalled "godkings", who domesticated and exployted the land, animals, plants and people. Legendary Gilgamesh was one of the first godkings, the prototype of a godking. These are the socalled "herders" and we are their herd. That’ how they see it. And they want to rule the world and Mother Nature forevever or die trying. This "elite" and it’s sheer vertical pyramid of socio- ecomomy/ecology and power is the real cause of our mess. But they are in captivity, they can’t leave the planet like they dreamed of. They are stuck.

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    Replies
    1. Nowadays, these guys aren’t called "godkings" anymore, we live in a democracy, you know, therefore these guy are called "Global PLAYERS"nowadays. Maybe the term "global gamblers" would be more suitable.

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    2. I looked up "global player" in my personal dictionary and it said ...

      mudda fugger ...

      A neighbor a few doors up cut down three huge poplar trees a few years ago. They were amazing guardians ... had to be over sixty feet high. (I don't know how tall they were ... but they were huge.)

      Of course all the birds in the neighborhood gathered over at my place because I'm one of the few people who hasn't bought into this idea that trees in the yard are, I don't know, some sort of hazard to everyone's personal property.

      I too was almost in tears as I watched these huge trees come down over the course of several days. I was also furious. I couldn't figure out how nobody could be affected by the birds all of a sudden flying to and fro and chirping frantically. That was obviously a familiar place to them, and they were in a panic. A few squirrels ran around in a panic too over those few days ... even more of a panic than squirrels usually seem to be in.

      It was obvious that those tress had been home to many, or at least a refuge as they went about their day. I couldn't figure out how anybody could just be oblivious to all this protest from the animals as the crews worked to take down the majestic trees.

      I was heartbroken, but I watched from my yard as a way of paying homage to these old trees that had stood for longer than anybody who lived here had been here (nobody here is a long time resident on my block.)

      Ya. It's a level of consciousness. Thick skinned and cold hearted. Oblivious to the connection among things.

      People think those little birds are just random birds flying through their yards. Many don't realize they live in the same few blocks their whole life, and the ones that don't migrate are the very same ones that are always flitting through your yard day after day. Most people think it's just a random bird as if they have no permanent home.

      I love the little chickadee that travels with the same nuthatch family instead of his own kind. He's sort of weird that he's chosen that life for himself, but he seems to think he's a nuthatch for some reason. The other chickadee's don't do that, like ever. That's how I know it's him, and he's been here for many years now. He cracks me up.

      I even noticed a robin migrated back to our very yard once a year later, where it had been born the year before. I knew her by an unusual white circle around one eye that made her look quite distinct. That's pretty admirable ... to find your way back to the same spot from thousands of miles away where they spend the winter.

      Ya, those trees were these creatures homes.

      mudda fuggers ...

      At least they still have my yard to roost in.

      Peace Nem. Thanks for the tree story. Me too, happened exactly the same way.

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    3. Lovely story, LWA. I love the little chickadee just from your description. I envy you your good eyesight. Mine is too poor to make out bird faces, or even identify one from others of the same species. A gray bird with a long tail seemed like one of a kind, however, taking a long time to get comfortable, till he'd be just a couple feet away doing his thing. He just seemed to have decided the backyard was his special turf. Then there was a fatter bird of brownish gray, who, at a different period, did the same thing. I believe it stayed all winter, for I saw it digging around in the snow a few times.

      It's a horrible shame that I don't know the names of birds. Doves frequent the power lines above the backyard...and many birds live in our trees. I keep my backyard as wild as I can get away with, and am blessed with the presence of numerous critters. Nice, healthy bull snakes on a couple occasions. The tiny one from last year must have been the 4' long one seen this year. A miraculous creature (although I shy away from snakes through upbringing). There were toads this year, since we had a little rain.

      Great to have like minded people to share with. We are a special breed, and we have special work to do.

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    4. Nem and LWA, well said... it's incredible how much the elites actually despise the masses. Most people don't get this dynamic. They go out of their way to defend the very elites who spit on their faces first thing in the morning. There are some interesting books that let us peek into mind and soul of the ultra rich. They are not similar to the common man, despite what the common man thinks. This is one - The Natural History of the Rich: A field guide

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  37. Satish,

    Sounds like you're saying there's something in the water of civilization that will produce more elites if the current ones are eliminated. I was, however, careful to say "the effects of the elite," and wasn't suggesting how those effects might be eliminated. So, whether there is something in the water of civilization that will recreate those effects once eliminated is a moot point for the moment. Then, you're painting civilization with a very broad brush. No doubt you will go into that further in your next article. Look forward to it.

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  38. It often gets murky when there are winners and losers as a technology gets introduced. Each side makes a case for or against the tech and it gets hard to come to a clear conclusion as to whether it was good or bad.

    Is there possibly a bigger picture indicator we can look at here?

    Tying tech into the population explosion equation ... I'll introduce the technologies of fertilizers and antibiotics for consideration. At first both of these technologies seemed like clear winners. However, antibiotics eventually lost their edge and we wound up with even stronger 'bugs' as result, and were left with antibiotics that didn't even work anymore anyway ... and stronger bugs now as a result of our efforts.

    With fertilizers, at first the miracle tech of the green revolution at a time when it looked like the world might starve to death for lack of enough food to feed the growing population with. However, we eventually learned that these chemical fertilizers (any and all of them) just eventually strip the soil of it's nutrients and leave crop land sterile and unable to grow anything at all anymore after awhile anyway.

    Both of these technologies just seemed to make the initial problems even worse in the end.

    I often looked at these two examples as almost a warning from nature not to mess with the order of things, as if nature only just worked even harder then to bring things back into a proper balance. After all ... never discovering antibiotics would have proved to be a pretty decent check against over population. So would have not discovering fertilizers ... we'd reached our limit of food production without them. That would have been a pretty good population check if we'd taken it as a warning that we'd now reached our limits for human poulation growth.

    If you think about it, that was three pretty stark backlashes from nature for presuming to mess with the natural order of things, like warnings. Stronger bugs and no antibiotics that work after awhile anyway. Sterilized soil from chemical fertilizer use. And with both combined and pressed ahead with anyway ... we then got a big wallop of overpopulation.

    To me these always seemed like indicators that it's just not wise to mess with the natural balance of things. Actions seem to be met with equal and opposite reactions in order to just try and restore the situation back to the initial natural balance anyway.

    I always thought that was a pretty good indicator that we weren't really benefiting from these technologies really at all, so when would we just learn to simply let things be and to respect the natural balance of things?

    I know. Everybody always argues that it's all fine ... but what happens when YOU'RE the one who's dying from a simple infected tooth?

    Well, maybe we just stopped accepting death is what happened. With people who've had near death experiences, the one's who see that death is not final and that reincarnation is actually a real reality, there is often a loss of the fear of death in these people. If we accepted death as part of a cyclical process ... we probably wouldn't fight so hard to stave it off with these technologies. Maybe we wouldn't bother with things like antibiotics and fertilizers. We might just be happy to let circumstances play themselves out naturally.

    Same goes for our destruction of wildlife too, when you think about it. We won't stand for a bear gobbling up our child. No, no, no ... we keep those bears dead so that we can be safe and alive.

    Imagine how different life would would be if we didn't fear death the way we do?

    But that's where you lose people I guess. Everybody fears death, fears snuffing out into nothing. Don't they? Or do they? Maybe some don't. Do those people who don't live their lives differently from those who do?

    Antibiotics and fertilizers just contributed to over population. I don't see how they were necessary or even good inventions at all in the end. I can see those sorts of downsides arising out of many technologies.


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    1. Exactly... a lot of these technologies seem to work in the short term but always come up short in the long term. Synthetic fertilizers have ruined soils. They have allowed for mass scale mono cropping at the expense of soil quality.

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    2. I doubt that it's ever about one technological breakthrough or another. What appears to be behind it all is some kind of dream. We have the American Dream, for example. And the technologies would likely all conform to the dream...

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    3. RANDOM THOUGHTS ON POPULATION

      Separation Thinking:

      Taking a position that human population should be reduced imposes huge responsibility. If we say that technology (or whatever process) brought about separation thinking--separation from nature, from each other--we can't detach our individual selves from the "people" we want fewer of. And if we are to be the change we want, recommending population reduction is recommending that one oneself contribute to that reduction...by removing oneself from the scene. Most people who recommend population reduction would start with themselves.

      It may serve us better to examine population size in context of major world issues that relate to it.

      Abortion:

      Abortion Rights are consistent with population reduction. Abortion rights have a highly "stacked function." Controlling population, freeing women are two of those functions.

      Adoption:

      if we are to counter separation thinking, the overwhelming mass of unwanted children in the developing world must be cared for. Adoption of those children by Western people is a prospect for global unification and goodwill. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are prominent exemplars of this process. Foreign adoption and abortion rights seem to be complementary.

      Wildlife Depletion:

      If human population were to be reduced, even drastically, in a post fossil fuel age, the forestation that wildlife depends on wouldn't necessarily fare better than it does now. It might quickly vanish in the search for fire wood for heating and cooking. A dramatically smaller population would come with many associated breakdowns in order and knowledge. (This is if we're thinking in practical terms, and not just theoretically.) It's not clear that fewer people with less structure, no organized food production, etc., would be any kinder than now with wildlife.

      Conclusion:

      AFAICS, and ethical stand on population requires that one lives what one proposes.

      1) A life of action, rather than just reflection, is required. Such action requires love and nurture for all the world's children. There needs to be an action path toward that.

      2) Analysis of the political struggle against white, male hegemony must figure in the analysis of population control.

      3) A world where women are free to decide on the issues of optimal population size must be envisaged and pursued. A very large portion of the anti abortion establishment comprise evangelical white MEN. Needless to say, there's something wrong with this picture.

      4) Population size is not just for women to decide; it must be negotiated universally among the world's people, including the analysis of planetary restoration, universal justice and food production in the post fossil fuel age. But women would undoubtedly lead that movement.

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    4. Artleads, It should be possible to separate the following two actions -
      1. Assessing the current situation as objectively as possible.
      2. Proposing solutions to address the problems, if any, uncovered during action number 1.

      If we try to do both these things at the same time, we don't end up performing step 1 thoroughly. Consequently, step 2 and any other steps following it will suffer. This is, in fact, what has been happening for many decades and centuries. We haven't been able to perform step 1 thoroughly. We haven't taken a deep enough look or gone far back enough. Instead, we have been confusing ourselves with incomplete proposals that attempt to solve an ill-defined problem.

      I'm not proposing any solutions to the over-population problem here. I'm simply stating that the current levels of population are abnormal, unprecedented and unnatural. Let's not define the problem based on the feasibility of a proposed solution. If, on the other hand, you disagree with the definition of the problem itself, we can talk more about it.

      I'm sure you have seen this lecture by Albert Bartlett - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_VpyoAXpA8 (it's been mentioned many times on NBL over the years)

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    5. Satish,

      This seems to be a good approach for the moment. My plan is to first read your post, then see if I can look at the issue in terms of the two-part approach you recommend.

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