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The order of order is the chaos of control...A Philosopher of Change - An Interview with Yasuhiko Kimura by Carter Phipps
"...not only is the body of information growing but also the accessibility of metaformational insight becomes greater. Compared to hundreds of years ago, people are really becoming much more aware of that which is eternal. So we live at an exciting moment in history, when both metaformation and information are gaining tremendous momentum. We are transforming transformation itself."
love
J.R. Mooneyham continues to put together definitive reports on the main issues facing our species and planetship. The hidden costs to society of 'right-wing' political governance
"Right-wing governments tend to accentuate feelings of isolation and lack of support in many citizens, which combined with less fortunate circumstances in the distribution of wealth leads to increased suicide rates. On the other hand, left-leaning governments are usually more community-oriented and inclusive, thereby reducing the isolation felt by many among the populace, and causing lower numbers of people to take their own lives."
gettin' totally down - Nanosocialism
"The case against capitalism is not very difficult to make. For example, the U.S. has an enormous underclass which does not share in wealth per se. Homelessness, infant mortality rates, childhood poverty, and illiteracy are unacceptable anomalies in the world's self-proclaimed economic archetype. They aren't anomalies at all; they are symptoms.

Capitalism's failure to foster "social technology" has been made elsewhere. Enough to reiterate, technology which happens to produce a pronounced social benefit is not the sine qua non of capitalism. At best, the humanitarian nature of capitalism technology is accidental."
Humanistic values for the 21st century must be secular, democratic, and pluralistic

If you are up for a sizable cognitive feast, Brian Rotman elaborates on Becoming Beside Oneself
"And what of becoming? Becoming beside oneself, is not to be identified with imitating, reproducing, splitting or doubling oneself; or identifying with, assimilating, or incorporating something into oneself; or being reborn; though it can couple with or be traversed by all these. It is rather a form of atemporal change, becoming party to a condition other than one's own, a question of self difference, of standing to the side of oneself. At the same time it engenders a condition of de-singularity in which, by acceding to an aboriginal multiplicity, one becomes not one."
love
Make the ultimate escape - create your own universe

Massimo Pigliucci has an animated internal dialogue with Bertrand Russel: On death, thoughts of an optimistic atheist; and wins. .
"..there is no reason to fear death, since where it is, we are not, and where we are, it is not."
Epicurus
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The use of torture is not confined to the Dark Ages or to any religious sect or government. People are being tortured at this very moment in places all over the world. A Heretic's Final Journey - warning, will cause nausea and an intense interest in Amnesty International.
"In order to justify their behavior, they turn their theories into dogmas, their bylaws into First Principles, their political bosses into Gods and all those who disagree with them into incarnate devils. This idolatrous transformation of the relative into the Absolute and the all too human into the Divine, makes it possible for them to indulge their ugliest passions with a clear conscience and in the certainty that they are working for the Highest Good. And when the current beliefs come, in their turn, to look silly, a new set will be invented, so that the immemorial madness may continue to wear its customary mask of legality, idealism, and true religion."
Aldous Huxley
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Corporations and the Global Village is a review by Victor Ferkiss of The Future of Corporate Globalization: From the Extended Order to the Global Village. Author Jeremiah J. Sullivan prognosticates that our profligate profusion will probably lead to a version of McLuhan's vision. Note: ...this book was written before Enron and other corporate scandals showed how corrupt major American firms were.
"...a shift from twentieth-century homo economicus rooted in a world of transactions aimed at future well-being to twenty-first-century communal man embedded in orderly, just, and virtue-enhancing processes focused on living well in the present."
"Will robots inherit the earth? Yes, but they will be our children. We owe our minds to the deaths and lives of all the creatures that were ever engaged in the struggle called Evolution. Our job is to see that all this work shall not end up in meaningless waste." Marvin Minski concludes that our future is indeed biologically limited. He also asks a vital question: Do cultures have rights?

A novel reality could be adjudged by grokking the Swedenborg Glossary of Theistic Science. On the other hand, this vomitive verbiage obfuscates, and is perhaps best left to the masochist. A more graphical display of honest enquiry may be had in Margaret Masterman's "Theism as a Scientific Hypothesis"
"I will now, with the help of a logical system derived from Boole's insight, construct a mathematical iconic vehicle of the Christian Trinity; and I do this in all seriousness, not as a gimmick, since I think that Boole, in setting up his Laws of Thought, had a Trinitarian revelation as well as an Idempotent one."
John J Reilly's review of The End of the World: The Science and Ethics of Human Extinction, by John Leslie, presents the case in far more succinct fashion than the tome itself that we must make our choices with utmost care.
"There are ethicists who argue that, since there will inevitably be unhappy people in any human population, it would be better if there were no such populations. As my grammar school principal used to say, it's just a few who spoil it for all the rest."
love
Brought to active attention by a Dear Reader (thanks Zac), I hustled off to investigate U. G. Krishnamurti; a name I had passed by often in my Jiddhu quests. Beginning with The Well (it may be remembered by future historians that everything began with The Well) I am at first startled to think that I had not reviewed his work earlier, since he appears to have an anti-meme approach to enlightenment. Digging for the dirt, I ran across A Critique of U.G. Krishnamurti, which would inter this odd little man under the weight of his hypocrisy. I decided to defer to Sarlo's Guru Rating Service. Of course, U.G. is not-a-guru.
"Never has a 'philosopher' become so famous while emphatically denying that he even has a philosophy."
love
Stephen Chilton sees that the creation of a just society is predicated on understanding the fundamentals, and offers Two Moments of Discourse Ethics that help us recognize relational reality.
"The bad news is that it doesn't say what's Right, or solve the problem of moral grounding, or enable us to persuade others willy-nilly to adopt our perspective, or tell us what institutions to use in our interactions.
love
On the other hand, the good news is that the theory gives us some indication of what's important, namely, actual discourse: dialogical vs. monological reasoning. It helps us understand what to let go of: being Right, and the burden of having to be Right. It gives us some indication of what we can hold onto, even in the face of outside pressure: our right to agree or disagree. And all of these give us a different sense of our relationship with others (or with the Other, if you like)."
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Finding Literary Kicks is an unexpected treat. Levi Asher invites us to Turn off your mind relax and float downstream on our choice of seminal mind-rafts; such as Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, Neal Cassady and many more.
When the voices of children are heard on the green
And laughing is heard on the hill,
My heart is at rest within my breast
And everything else is still.
-Blake-
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Whenever I read things like this Conversation with Dolores Brien and Robert Romanyshyn, the latter being author of Technology as Symptom & Dream, I somehow experience great elation at our potential and deep despair at our distracted attention; at the same time. I need a word for this. Or do I, for is not the label the first distinction; a layer of seperation? I want to be this feeling because I am.

This of course leads to Ben Goertzel, Mark Germine, and Allan Combs who collectively selected articles exploring The Dynamics of Thought, Reality, and Consciousness.
"Mind will be viewed as a collection of interdefining, interpenetrating forms, preserving itself through self-organization as it draws creative power from the ceaseless flow of time."
love
Brad DeLong and his Thoughts of the Week passed into my consciousness from a source I don't remember; but Deep Thanks whoever you are. Two Views of the Sources of Global Divergence: Jared Diamond and Jeffrey Sachs
"It was at the end of America's Constitutional Convention that Benjamin Franklin stood, and said that for the entire Convention he had been looking at the picture on the wall and wondering whether it was of a sunrise or a sunset. But, Franklin said, now that the Convention had finished its work and he had digested the plan proposed, he knew the answer: that it was a rising, and not a setting sun."
love
Species of Mind - The Philosophy and Biology of Cognitive Ethology by Colin Allen and Marc Bekoff is available in, albeit critical, part. The Preface, chapter 1, and chapter 9, linked here separately as there is no hyper-relationality, clearly illustrate the author's aim to explore how evolutionary accounts of mental phenomena can inform and be informed by philosophical accounts.
"Cognitive ethology need not model itself on other fields of science, such as physics or neurobiology, in order to gain credibility. Envy of the "hard" sciences is what led to the neglect of animal and human minds in the early part of the twentieth century."
To be, then, is the question; and th'answer 'rapped therein. The Mystic Rider conjures The Alan Watts Story, which illuminates his extraordinary ability to bring us to the point, to later realize that the closer we come to that the more impenetrable the veils of this.
"When you are told from childhood that you are expected and commanded to behave in a way that will be acceptable only if you do it voluntarily, you remain permanently mixed up. That, if anything, is permanent brain damage."
love
Still later by our re-cognition, though earlier as the prankster would have it, A.W. related grace in inimitable fashion with a lecture titled The World As Emptiness, (or, How the Dharma Bum Spent His Easter Vacation).
"The difficulty of Zen is the almost overwhelming problem of getting anyone to see that life-and-death is not a problem. The Zen master tackles this by asking the student to find out for whom the world is a problem, for whom is pleasure desirable and pain undesirable, thus turning consciousness back upon itself to discover the ego. But of course it turns out that this mythical "I" that seems to confront experience or to be trapped in the world is nowhere to be found."
love
Charles Tart gives a more prosaic yet also highly speculative exclamation to the point of my day. As Above, So Below: Five Basic Principles Underlying Physics and Psychology
In search of material on George Spenser Brown, and more particularly a book he wrote under the pseudonym James Keys, Only Two Can Play This Game, I came across The Obsever. This is an internetorical gem from '93 that has a very good discussion on GSB's Laws of Form among much else pertaining to Autopoiesis & Enactive Cognitive Science. I'm still looking for Only Two..., both in the carnesphere at used bookshops and in any kind of online form.
"Everything said is said by an observer"
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Our moral prowess had best catch up with our physical ability, and grey goo is hardly a psychedelic phantasy. Advances in the Philosophy of Technology brings us to a better understanding of Ethics and the Systemic Character of Modern Technology
"Can and may people resign from their individual responsibility and leave guidance and control to an integrated system?"
At the birth of a sexually concieved and urethral-orifice-born homo noeticus, the mother often needs a snatch snip; but I don't think that is what the authors of Artificial life needs a real epistemology are getting at. sorry...
"If artificial life is to inform philosophy, physics, and biology it must address the implementation of epistemic cuts."
Yehouda Harpaz has clarity of reasoning on his mind. The Irrefutability of nonsense-arguments, and (the) implications aims to help us recognize, diagnose and treat the gimcrackery that often passes for insightful polemic.
"It should be noted that if you think that you have spotted a nonsense-argument, it is not not necessarily because the other person used a nonsense-argument."
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Legal Realism and the Social Contract is a thorough review of the work of Lon Fuller, eyed from a current perspective. After soaking in the endlessly regurgitating foam of 'presentable law', from Judge Jude to Lawn Order, this is the real thing and well worth the effort.
"A total failure in any one of these eight directions does not simply result in a bad system of law; it results in something that is not properly called a legal system at all, except perhaps in the Pickwickian sense in which a void contract can still be said to be one kind of contract."
Lon Fuller
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Edward A. Shanken carefully places this ouvre d'amour into our perceptual basket, and with this statement: "I would like to propose, therefore, that technology and intuition are inseparable." provides incubation for a non-dual understanding; or a rousing round of cognitive masterbation. Technology and Intuition: A Love Story? Roy Ascott's Telematic Embrace is at once warm and cozy, and scary as hell.
"Kristine Stiles has suggested that the international intelligence community now has the educated classes right where they want us -- at home, in our computerized cottage industries where our behavior can be most easily monitored. In this light, it is doubtful that telematics or any technology will enable the radical reorganization and unification of global society in the near future."
love
You Have Infinitely Many Lives is the conclusion of the ultimate re-birth theory; Eternal Recurrence.
"Recurrence seems to me to be the best of all the theories of personal immortality, because it's the one that most preserves personal identity by preserving your body. Your recurrence replicas are your twins; some of them live lives that are exactly identical to yours, others live different lives. But, like real twins or clones, their bodies are the same as your body. They are you."
Steve Best lets us know the vital need for, and vitality of the (trans)historical analysis, in his essay Human Identity Politics: Homo Indeterminus.
"We truly are "in between stories," and a key task for the future is to continue to write a new story of creation, a cosmic narrative that emphasizes our responsibilities in the larger community that engulfs us, the biocommunity in which we are only one of millions of interdependent, co-evolving species."
love
Dimela Yekwai gave this lecture at Internet Galaxis in Budapest. Communication and Its Journey into the Modern World. Our loss of lingual diversity is analogous to our loss of biodiversity.
"In our modern times people as diverse as Afrikans, Chinese, Indians, Inuits all speak English as their first or more succinctly official language. In recognising these connections we see English as the language of enslavement."
love
Recently, the Ontario (very)Provincial Government decided that one answer to homelessness is to psychiatrically (de-de-)institutionalize those suffering, or daring to be, outside. Now, we don't provide adequate housing, but will spend fifty grand a year keeping you warm, dry, fed, suitably drugged and teletainmently occupied in a splendidly outfitted and secure facility. You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile. Beyond Forced Psychiatry: The Rights to Refuse and Explore Alternatives
"As this paper has presented, the right to refuse forced treatment is only a precursor to the affirmative right to chose alternatives."
love
The ideological parallel to this lousey (sic) situation is that of gender disparity; and we all suffer in a fundamental way, with countless affective effects. Annotated Bibliography: Gender and Sustainable Development.
"My assumption is that gender is inherently a social construct, and biological differences between men and women have been over-emphasized in order to justify and continue paradigms reinforced by dominance, power and control."
love
I very much want to ascribe (sardonic sigh) to this meta-theory of 'the Government in time'. It offers hope, a release from the hegemony of those who would control myour states. DonParagon's Vision of the Future ultimately leads to a post-government world
"in which people's actions will no longer be driven by coercive rules, but people's actions will finally be based on ideas they like and on their talent to improvise in order to work out such ideas. People will be able to develop their talents, listen to their intuition and follow their dreams."
Here we are, in interesting times.

One needle in the balloon of this probabalistic topia is that Our most powerful 21st-century technologies - robotics, genetic engineering, and nanotech - are threatening to make humans an endangered species. Bonus 'blopoints for guessing the author of quote below.
"These engineered human beings may be happy in such a society, but they will most certainly not be free. They will have been reduced to the status of domestic animals."
love
Murray Bookchin is able to put the present into historical context while exhibiting a remarkable prescience, that is nicely viewed in hindsight in this interview conducted by Kick It Over magazine in 1985. Radicalizing Democracy
"What we find today is a totally immoral economy and society which has managed to unearth the secrets of matter and the secrets of life at the most fundamental level. This is a society that, in no sense, is capable of utilizing this knowledge in any way that will produce a social good."
"In this fascinating conversation, Fred Alan Wolf reveals why he believes the mind/body question so central to spiritual philosophy is illuminated by the discoveries of modern theoretical physics."
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The Revolutionary League, Philosophy by Numbers detonates the thoughts of Carcerian Juan [not his real name], (who) speaks of the Politics of Anarchy. This explosion of unique verbiage really wricks my linguistic churl.
" 'Anarchy' is something of a dirty word these days in the Cage, used by Hardheads to denote anything that's against their creed, and Guvners to mean anyone who disagrees with their Laws. But it ain't like that, cutter."
love
Is Philosophy Dead?
"I bring the non-news that, as usual, neither our successes nor our failures are at an end."
"Will robots inherit the earth? Yes, but they will be our children. We owe our minds to the deaths and lives of all the creatures that were ever engaged in the struggle called Evolution. Our job is to see that all this work shall not end up in meaningless waste." Marvin Minski concludes that our future is indeed biologically limited. He also asks a vital question: Do cultures have rights?

Is sedition respectable? William Safire thinks so.
"I hold that what used to be the crime of sedition; the deliberate bringing of the government into disrepute; the divisive undermining if public confidence in our leaders; the outrageous verbal assaulting of our most revered institutions, is a glorious part of the American democratic heritage."
love
Nicholas Saunders, Social Inventor
Alternative England & Wales
Neal's Yard
E for Ecstasy
Ideas, Ideas, Ideas
cosmifly
Heretic's Heart: A Journey Through Spirit and Revolution, by Margo Adler, is a personal tale of how the dog wagged the tail, and the tale wagged, man; dig?
"True, my Berkeley was not the only one. It was a center of bohemianism, yet Ronald Reagan was the governor of the state when I graduated, in 1968, and his signature is on my diploma. Berkeley had the largest number of Nobel laureates and Peace Corps volunteers of any university, but also the largest number of federal contracts for nuclear weapons research."
As our rivers and creeks start to flow again, and the Yukon emerges from a rather easy sleep this time around, I am drawn to Alan Watts; The Mountain Stream.

While a student at Oxford, Peter B. Lloyd engaged in an e-mail dialogue with a disembodied entity, in which they pursued the question How Can You Tell Whether a Machine is Conscious?

Every time a person comes along with a deep insight into the transpersonal, someone else will turn it into a religion. Unless they are totally self-centered like L. Ron, in which case you have an extrusion; the human psyche enjoying a spiritual defecation. The Secular Sphinx: The Riddle of Ethics Without Religion shows us that the magic is there, for each of us, personally; if we care to see.
"Whether we like it or not, whether we know it or not, every encounter, every thought, every action, can and does make some degree of difference, ranging from virtually negligent to powerfully diverting. A seemingly innocuous decision, carefully placed in time and circumstance, may affect uncounted others in multitudinous ways."
love
Chris Lucas questions fundamental assumptions concerning Quality of Life.
"Many of our essays and the complexity ideas behind them relate to the re-evaluation of our thought patterns, of our way of treating the world. In essence this means a move from a static mechanical and materialistic perception of reality to an organic multilevel perception of a dynamic and changing reality."
love
In the final analysis it is relationship and not control, that will define our interaction with technology. How identity will fare in this common intellisphere is the subject of Is Human Identity an Artifact?.
"Emphasizing the circularity of the use of culture as a device for explaining human behavior, he recalls Clifford Geertz's observation that it is a mistake to interpret the way a group of human beings behaves as an expression of their culture while defining the culture as the way in which they behave."
An anthropology of reconciliation is called for by Sheldon R. Isenberg and Gene R. Thursby in the transcritical essay A Perennial Philosophy Perspective on Richard Rorty's Neo-Pragmatism.
"This kind of anthropology provides the possibility of breakthrough, of escape from the determinism of positivism as well as from the indeterminism of hermeneutics -- without neglecting the usefulness of each at its own level of inquiry."
Lest it be thought that the primary focus in my life is altered states of consciousness, it is not. I see all consciousness as an altered state (erk). I will now recognize the compulsive error of my webloggin' ways and go about fulfilling the rest of this 'blog's stated dedication. The first and prime among these is freedom, and here is a site probably without peer in ternetland. The Freedom Forum Online seems to have contained freedom without constraint.

I will leave any kind of qualitative review of Innovism: A Primer to you Dear Reader, except to observe that controlled novelty is an oxymoron.
"It does not, however, generally prescribe any particular course of action for a particular circumstance. Instead, it provides guidelines for evaluating the relative merits of available courses of action, and proscribes certain acts classified as crimes."
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Humor requires it and philosophy seeks it. Nick Black is a humilosophor of the first water; and quite a cosmoet. The Sacred Chou
"Flippity, floppity, flip
The mouse on the mobius strip;
The strip revolved,
The mouse dissolved,
In a chronodimensional skip."
love
"Cultural revolution is more important than political. Bugs Bunny should be adopted as the symbol of anarchists everywhere. Hoffman's discovery of LSD in 1943 was a manifestation of direct intervention by God in human affairs. The nomination of the boar hog Pegasus for President by the Yippies was the most transcendentally lucid event of the 20th century; mass orgies on every street corner is the most practical next step in liberating the world from tyranny."
love
All is One at the Nonduality Salon. Contained within is Collapsing the Dualistic Paradigm and other short essays which in fact compile a rather unique weblog of diverse contributers. Check out the Nondual Daily Nugget.
"Ultimately, the only truly indispensible yoga and "path" is life itself, which I suppose is karma yoga whether we call it that or not."
love
Alan Watts was a master at containing that which cannot be held, at pointing with form to the formless.
"Thus when the line between myself and what happens to me is dissolved and there is no stronghold for an ego even as a passive witness, I find myself not *in* a world but *as* a world which is neither compulsive or capricious. What happens is neither automatic or arbitrary...it just happens, and all happenings are mutually independent in a way that seems unbelievably harmonious."
love
Stoicism has an ancient history, and is here presented with a sunny disposition and a friendly interface.
"The Stoa del Sol is a contemporary forum for essays that reflect some of the historical principles of Stoicism in relation to a New Cosmology and New Spiritual Paradigm prompted by modern science and systems theories."
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Complexity, Problem Solving, and Sustainable Societies brings to attention that there is a point of diminishing returns; and reminds us that those who do not learn from history are destined to repeat it.
"We have the the opportunity to become the first people in history to understand how a society's problem-solving abilities change. To know that this is possible yet not to act upon it would be a great failure of the practical application of ecological economics."
love
Noam Chomsky's formidible observations are given a canvas in this interview by David Barsamian for Z Magazine. Expanding the Floor of the Cage begins by drawing attention to the American National Obsession with warehousing humans in jails and schools, and covers a gamut of other issues.
"Most people think the government has a responsibility to ensure reasonable standards, minimal standards for poor people. On the other hand most people are against welfare, which does exactly that. That's a propaganda achievement that you have to admire."
love
This excerpt from Arthur Kroker's Technology and the Canadian Mind explores Marshall McLuhan's ambivilance about technology and technoculture.
Digital Humanism: The Processed World of Marshall McLuhan
"That McLuhan could find no moment of deviation between his civil humanism, founded on the defence of "civilization", and his absorption into the intellectual appendages of empire, indicates, starkly and dramatically, precisely how inert and uncritical is the supervening value of 'civilization'. "
The Third Culture, Beyond the Scientific Revolution by John Brockman
"The third culture consists of those scientists and other thinkers in the empirical world who, through their work and expository writing, are taking the place of the traditional intellectual in rendering visible the deeper meanings of our lives, redefining who and what we are."
David Pratt looks at Theosophical teaching and finds many similarities with current thinking in physics. Worlds within Worlds
"These ideas begin to approach the philosophy of the ancient wisdom, which teaches that there are no limits to the number of interlocking, interliving worlds within worlds, or to the scale of space and time on which they exist, and that each of them is just as material to its respective inhabitants, relatively speaking, as our own world is to us."
Ignoring the lack of capitalized letters, generalizing on generalizations is an essay to relish.
"that is, the essence of what works out well, which we vainly try to capture in the generalized form of 'roles and scripts', goes beyond the limits of language; it comes through the eyes, the skin, the tongue, ears and nostrils --- all are gates where our body receives the nourishment of otherness."
David Stephens is a teacher at Summerhill, or was when he wrote this essay on Summerhill, Education and Anarchism. The key to our future freedom is children educated in freedom.
"If adult values are foisted upon children, they cannot be expected to grow up capable of making their own Judgements, thinking for themselves. Summerhill refuses to mould the child, for we do not presume to have a picture of what children should grow up to be like; we allow them to develop - free, so that the natural good that is in them may grow undistorted by indoctrination."
While the hypocritical wage war on our selves, there is hope in the heart of darkness. Visionary people have built a community that works. I think that this is also very strong evidence that radical decentralization is key to our sane survival; and if one can do it in Columbia one could do it anywhere. Steve Curwood Reports on Gaviotas, Columbia
"Not Utopia, but Topia. In Greek, a prefix U signifies "no." Utopia literally means "no place." It's just an idea. But Gaviotas is real. We've gone from fantasy to reality, from Utopia to Topia."
Utopia Limited An Anthropological Response to Richard Rorty by Stacey Meeker suggests that Rorty's (ulterior motive) vision is really just to try to bring the ultra-left back into the liberal mainstream.
"Perhaps Habermas is correct that Rorty's protean efforts to elaborate a convincing liberal utopia can best be characterized as a romantic nostalgia-resentment for a metaphysics that has disappointed and disillusioned him. But the impact made by his work suggests a more focused explanation."
From somewhere sometime in the third information revolution, Larry Kohl, PhO. provides an overview of the first two, and brings a sense of scale to our place in the present.
"In the microcosm, the most outstanding example of an information system is the double helix of DNA, the blueprint for organic life. On a cosmic scale, the formation of planets, solar systems, and galaxies are all examples of complexification, while burned out suns, dried up planets, and (perhaps) black holes are examples of entropy. Smack in the middle of these two extremes lies the world.of human intelligence and behavior."
Zeus and Emile engage in dynamic discussion and bring us to understand The Profane Parent-Child Geometry of Western Scientific Culture.
"Clearly, the flower in the rainforest, the product of a harmonious co-evolutionary relationship with its environment, ... if genetically modified, will no longer possess that completionally pulled harmony. The nature of the dissonance the genetically engineered entity may engender is another story, ... an innately unpredictable unknown."
Creating Livable Alternatives to Wage Slavery (CLAWS), shows great courage in promulgating ease. Let's spread the word folks, "we're tired as hell and we're not going to take it anymore".
"I would like to see people refusing to work in any job they felt was wrong. I would like to see work-dodgers: honourable and brave people who refuse to continue to feed this monstrous culture."
Chris Busby in his forward to Molly Scott Cato's book Seven Myths About Work
Jan Koster - Chomsky and the Reconstruction of Reason
"Contrary to what thinkers from Heidegger to Rorty suggest, this is the most significant philosophical development of the 20th century. It has restored Reason and therefore hope for a better future. Postmodernism, in contrast, not only is the uninformed pop version of the philosophical trends of the last two centuries, it also is a threat to human dignity because it destroys the notion of objective truth. This is what George Orwell, writing in 1943, feared more than the bombs of his days."
love
I have never known what to say in polite company about the teachings of Carlos Castenada, as Don Juan's exploits strike me as more Tolkien than Truth. You Only Live Twice, besides being a fine song, is a subtle yet somehow filling article from Details Magazine that adds focus to my-opia.
"You don't need don Juan," he said emphatically. "I needed him - so I can explain it to you. If you want freedom, you need decision. We need mass in the world; we don't want to be masturbators. If you recapitulate, you'll gather the energy - we will find you. But you need a lot of energy. And for that, you have to work your balls off. So, suspend your judgment and take the option. Do it. "Don Juan used to say, 'One of us is an asshole. And it isn't me.'" He paused a beat. "That's what I came to tell you today." Everyone roared with laughter and rose in applause as Castaneda left through the back door."
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John Moore performs the enviable task of dissecting, reassembling and textpectorating the Prophets of the New World; Noam (anarchosyndicalist) Chomsky, Murray (anarchocommunist) Bookchin, and Fredy (Michael Velli) Perlman.
"The colonization of the New World destroys the last free communities on Earth. The Enlightenment and the American revolution, with its libertarian tradition, are a cruel and gigantic hoax, mere rhetoric which conceals and justifies genocide aimed at communities of the Possessed, unprecedented ecological denudation and wholesale plunder which converts the entire planet into a huge forced labor camp."
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Leon Trotsky's The Stalin School of Falsification
"Our present party course is the main danger. It stifles the revolutionary power of resistance. What does your course consist of?"
Carbon tubes reach their limit
C. George Boeree reviews the existentialist Ludwig Binswanger, 1881 - 1966, and in the process reminds us that To live authentically means to be aware of yourself, of your circumstances (thrownness), of your social world (fallenness), of your duty to create yourself (understanding), of the inevitability of anxiety, of guilt, and of death. It means further to accept these things in an act of self-affirmation.
"Sometimes the world comes into you, such as with an artificial heart or a hip replacement. Sometimes you extend yourself into the world, with a cane, or a telescope, or a telephone. We are caught up in the world and the world in us, and there is no telling where one ends and the other begins."
love
Existentialism has nothing overt to say about our hedonist imperative; that which provides a point for our purpose. James W. Prescott dropped the bomb of Body Pleasure and the Origins of Violence on The Bulletin of The Atomic Scientists, November 1975. Besides leaving a limited impact crater, the neutronic insights of this mini-megatome assay have dissipated in the endless gale of mediated attention.
"A neuropsychologist contends that the greatest threat to world peace comes from those nations which have the most depriving environments for their children and which are most repressive of sexual affection and female sexuality."
love
Michael Ignatieff asks a question that puts the squeeze on a western tradition of moral liberalism and ethical conservatism.
"If moral perfectionism is in fact an alibi for inaction, then what kinds of arguments should we use to justify moral practices like intervening on behalf of people's right to free speech in other cultures and contexts?"
Coming soon to a home near you are Five Future Religions Waiting To Happen. The televisionary oracle Jay Kinney of the now defunct Gnosis Magazine looks toward the light, and says:
Visualize Whirled Peas

While the religious machinations turn, Erik Davis turns his attention to the religion that machines invoke, in Corpus Cybermeticum: Digital mysticism and the religion of technology
"Spiritually, we may be entering an age as vital and eclectic as that seen in Alexandria nearly two millennium ago, when Gnosticism, Judaism, hermeticism, Egyptian religion, Greek metaphysics, Zoroastrianism, and Christianity created a delirious dance, producing new forms of spirit from the mutant intermingling of traditions."
Whitecrow Borderland explores The Myth of Eden from the perspective of Native American cultural philosophy.
"I suppose one could argue that, while some of it may seem overly harsh in its judgment against European ideology, it is meant to suggest a simple necessity; namely, that the spirit world is alive and well and in process of becoming reintegrated into the world of flesh and living bone like it was before Europeans came to the Western hemisphere."
Theodore Adorno gives me a mental pat on the back, reminding me that to see differently, freshly is not to see wrongly.
"Whatever the intellectual does, is wrong. He experiences drastically and vitally the ignominious choice that late capitalism secretly presents to all its dependants: to become one more grown-up, or to remain a child."
The Social Alter, by Lloyd deMause, takes us deep into the ethical quagmire of owning personal responsibility for group behavior.
"Nations, home of our social alters, act out what seems to be a nonpersonal history because social events appear to exist "in reality" but seem not to be a result of the intentions or emotions of any individual."
You can't eat the cookbook, nor make love with a magazine. In mistaking the represented for the actual we lose our embeddedness; our sanity. How we confuse symbols and things is an urgent message to wake up.
"The real solution to excessive governmental power is education. People must learn the difference between a symbol (government) and a thing (effective group action), and they must come to believe in themselves and the natural value of individual experience. If people educate themselves to the point that they realize their own power and capabilities, huge governments will lose their audience. And make no mistake about it -- big government isn't just like show business, it is show business: no audience, no show."
An education with a difference may be had at Naropa University, where the first point of their mission statement says all I need to know.
"1. offer educational programs that cultivate awareness of the present moment through intellectual, artistic, and meditative disciplines;"
Tracing the concept of poverty across the centuries, How Poverty Lost Its Meaning shows that, once of an intrinsically spiritual nature, when increasingly aligned with unemployment poverty became a social sin.
"Things are as we say they are, a "virtual reality" extending well beyond our computer screens to encompass our entire social lives. As poverty theorist Michael Katz (1989: 7-8) has clearly recognized, poverty is not so much the existence of poor people as the prevailing discourse about them."
Fright is a conundrum. I can see a bear coming toward me in the forest and feel visceral fear while intellectually be interested/amazed/in awe. Here in my nice comfy house I am splanchnicly replete, warm, dry, fed and in good canine company, and yet upon reading as much of The Technology of Social Control as I could bear, I am terrified.
"The essential point that I am making is that science itself enters the social matrix of domination within which there are competing, fractionated groups -- all of whom wish to put the fruits of science to different purposes."
The Erotic Ontology of Cyberspace is one of the chapters of The Metaphysics of Virtual Reality by Michael Heim.
"In her speech in Plato's Symposium, Diotima, the priestess of love, teaches a doctrine of the escalating spirituality of the erotic drive. She tracks the intensity of Eros continuously from bodily attraction all the way to the mental attention of mathematics and beyond. The outer reaches of the biological sex drive, she explains to Socrates, extend to the mental realm where we continually seek to expand our knowledge."
Should there be a limit placed on the integration of humans and computers and electronic technology? Steve Mizrach poses the questions that need to be looked at before the implementation of technologies in the wild. The development of a cyborg bioethics is needed, and in my view there is also an immediate need for re-evaluation of Earthship's need for biodiversity, and an inclusion of this into a general planetary ethos.

Gene Roddenberry, whose name I inexcusably misspelled a few days ago, has had a great impact on western culture, especially in a more widespread acceptance of cultural relativity. In this interview he discusses a wide range of topics.
"What we humans are is really a remarkable thing. How can you doubt that we will survive and mature? There may be a lot of wisdom in the old statement about looking on the world lovingly. If we can, perhaps the world will have time to resolve itself."
While the line between virtual and actual reality continues to blur (and I wonder whether a cookbook is a compassionate gift for someone in a famine), we seem to be ethically monocular. There is more than privacy at stake here.
"In this paper we develop some of the critical issues raised by Allucquere Roseanne Stone in her essay 'Virtual Systems'. We set out to examine in some detail the relationship between embodiment, flesh and cyberspace."
The first book of GSB's that I read was written under the pen name of James Keys called Only Two Can Play This Game. Since he had cryptically referred to himself in a footnote, I was lead to his seminal work Laws of Form; a distinctive metamoment in my life.
"In 1969, George Spencer-Brown published a mathematical book called Laws of Form, which has inspired explorations in philosophy, cybernetics, art, spirituality, and computation. The work is powerful and has established a passionate following as well as harsh critics. This web site explores these people, their ideas and history, and provides references for further exploration."
It would be meet, and right to be aware of The Interrogator's Fallacy.

Written 25/12 '99, The Other Side of Time is a gift of insight into the "first cause" arguments.

The USA is a nation of states, but what's the difference between a Nation and a State? "The future of humanity depends on what happens to states and where "sovereign" decisions will be taken instead. These materials look at these questions and track some of the main trends."

Increased federalism with the commensurate decrease in regional authority is having an unintended effect(or is it...see conspiracy #69).
"Notice the trends. There has actually been a decline in the proportion of humankind living in free societies over this period; on the other hand, the percentage enduring unfree circumstances had only dropped slightly -- from 43% to 39%. It seems pretty clear that by Freedom House's own data, freedom has suffered some setbacks over a fifteen-year period -- not great leaps forward."
Speculative Microeconomics for Tomorrow's Economy takes a thorough look at trends, dangers and opportunities.
"Consider just two polar possibilities. On the one hand, one can envision a hybrid gift-exchange model, in which most people pay as much for access to Web content as they pay for NPR, and in which the few who value an in-depth information edge or speed-of-information acquisition pay more. At the other extreme, one can as easily foresee a world in which great efforts have been made to reproduce familiar aspects of the traditional model of profit maximization."
Sincere, in fact about as serious as one can get, is this investigation into Theodicy. The nature or even existence of evil is the penultimate religious discussion, and is here very well illuminated.

When done with sampling altered states of awareness, one might do well to ask "what is Buddhism and the True Value of Reality?" The Jeapordy pre-quest answer is <----------webgnome's note, do not coach contestants------------> 42.

Aldous Huxley warned us more than fifty years ago about the true nature of television and the affection of the effect. Neil Postman investigates the accuracy of Orwell's and Huxley's visions in Amusing Ourselves to Death.
"As Huxley remarked in Brave New World Revisited, the civil libertarians and rationalists who are ever on the alert to oppose tyranny "failed to take into account man's almost infinite appetite for distractions". "
"Consider the dance that has been going on between what I would call the elite and the people since the middle of the 18th century." Richard Moore writes a dead-on analysis of the real struggle for egalitarian existence.
"There is a brief window of opportunity - while modern democracies continue to survive - in which the people can wake up and peacefully seize control of their governments. After those governments have been devolved/downsized, it will be too late. And with modern weaponry under the command of the elite, there will be no possibility of the people arising anew in revolution."
I am energy, and mass, and the slow fire of transformation. Erich Shiffman presents The Spirit and Practice of Moving Into Stillness.
"You imagine a spinning top. Stillness is like a perfectly centered top, spinning so fast it appears motionless. It appears this way not because it isn't moving, but because it's spinning at full speed. Stillness is not the absence or negation of energy, life, or movement. Stillness is dynamic."
Jiddu Krishnamurti was one of the seminal thinkers of our time but few paid attention despite the renunciation of his Theosophical roots, either because the fire of his inquiry was too hot or we just didn't get it. In this excerpt he puts it as plainly and honestly as possible. Are we grown up enough now to see it?
He spoke now calmly, with incisiveness. "I will tell you what a religious man is. First of all, a religious man is a man who is alone--not lonely, you understand, but alone--with no theories or dogmas, no opinion, no background. He is alone and loves it--free of conditioning and alone--and enjoying it. Second, a religious man must be both man and woman--I don't mean sexually--but he must know the dual nature of everything; a religious man must feel and be both masculine and feminine. Third," and now his manner intensified again, "to be a religious man, one must destroy everything--destroy the past, destroy one's convictions, interpretations, deceptions--destroy all self-hypnosis--destroy until there is no center; you understand, no center. " He stopped.
A valid test of a world view is whether it stands the test of time. If few heed the call however, the picture may be static. Ivan Illich wrote A Constitution for Cultural Revolution in 1971.
"In the United States, for all its gargantuan prosperity, real poverty levels rise faster than the median income. In the capitalstarved countries, median incomes move rapidly away from rising averages. Most goods now produced for rich and poor alike in the United States are beyond the reach of all but a few in other areas. In both rich and poor nations consumption is polarized while expectation is equalized."
The Foundations of Collaboration is an exhaustive but essential read; by Peter J. Robertson
"What I mean is that it is possible to articulate a definition of "reality" that not only provides a context in which a collaborative paradigm is possible, but also leads to the logical conclusion that we are supposed to operate according to the principles of such a paradigm. What do I mean that a lot of things need to be changed? What I mean is that, since we are currently operating according to the principles of a competitive paradigm, we would be much better off if we changed human behavior and society to operate according to the principles of collaboration."
Jaffo writes a pointed essay on the need to see our political mediocrity clearly; and take a clear stand. I think he's right-(erk)-on in the assessment that our attention must be seriously drawn to the study of ethics. We are at the point when many fundamental decisions are going to be made, individual and collective, and we're largely going in blind; and perhaps uncaring.

Our perceptions of space and time change according to approach; representational and technological. Mike Sandbothe examines media and time in his essay
Media Temporalities in the Internet
"These relationships are in need of a differentiated analysis, one in league with neither the cultural critique of a post-historical media eschatology nor with the retreat of philosophy to a supposedly private domain of individual self-creation. What is needed is, in contrast to this, an active interplay between media philosophy and media politics in the Internet age, one which critically codetermines new technologies. "
John Pickering points out that Artificial Life Is Real. An incredible essay that enables a shift in view of world and mind. A movement away from Western humanism and towards Eastern post-humanism.
Technologically, we can now achieve man's historical goal - a post scarcity society. But socially and culturally, we are mired in the economic relations, institutions, attitudes and values of a barbarous past, of a social heritage created by material scarcity. Murray Bookchin wrote this more than thirty years ago in a leaflet called Toward a post-scarcity society: the American perspective and the SDS. So the years go by and a system that entrenches poverty in the name of a cheap and desperate labor force continues.

In religion all words are dirty words.
Anybody who gets eloquent about Buddha, or God,
or Christ,
Ought to have his mouth washed out with carbolic soap.

Aldous Huxley; complete poem here.

"And all our perceiving, the secret work of our eyes, our nostrils, our ears and our skin, is our constant communication and communion with the life of the whole." When the world is seen through new eyes everything changes. David Abram enquires into The Perceptual Implications of Gaia. The Gaia hypothesis, if taken seriously, has logical implications that call into question the mechanical model of perception upon which most contemporary scientific discourse is based.

This may be taking the analogy too far, but as the "brains" behind the wider "mind" we humans need to develop our social intelligence. We can presume to design artificially intelligent systems that don't argue violently, but when the creator is out of order can the creation be whole?

Last week Canadian PM Jean Cretien decided to engage (enrage) the Quebec separatists. I challenge both sides to injest the writings of Henry Flynt, and specifically his treatise The Legal Legitimacy of Sovereignty. Perhaps political dyspepsia will have them remain on their "thrones" for the holidays. Hey Jean, Lucien, read this.

Arthur Paul Patterson takes a look at the markers of our lives in a wonderful essay; Time and Time Again. "Viewed merely chronologically, life can appear like a Kafka novel; caught in the horror of mundanity it seems to contain very little significance."

"Will robots inherit the earth? Yes, but they will be our children. We owe our minds to the deaths and lives of all the creatures that were ever engaged in the struggle called Evolution. Our job is to see that all this work shall not end up in meaningless waste." Marvin Minski concludes that our future is indeed biologically limited. He also asks a vital question: Do cultures have rights?

A good measure of a culture's health is the tolerance of unpopular or even seditious literature. Judging by the Banned Books Resource Guide, we live in an age of deeply fried hypocrisy seasoned with spiced irony. Hmm, maybe I just need a walk in the snow.

An arachniography is a bibliography of web pages, such as this one (built using Arachnophilia no less). Autoscient is how I would describe the transhumanist dictionary.

Here is George Orwell's seminal essay Politics and the English Language.

Join Mr Objective and Mr Relative in the succinct neuro-drama Relative Ethics, by Steven McKinnon.

Time, time, time, is on my side... According to Meyen, time may be mine. " Each object has its individual time, and a class of similar objects has a generalized time or time archetype." I just don't like to be objectified as it rejects my relative state, generally speaking.

Pourquoi le lettrisme? A treatise from 1955 concludes that However it is put, it will be understood that we must start with everything. It has also been said that humanity has never posed problems that it cannot resolve.

Everything you wanted to know about knowledge and weren't afraid to learn is available in this text: "Implications of the Ecology of Knowledge for Multicultural Synergy" from Kognos.

On the other hand, Liane Gabora writes that "Knowing everything there is to know about how concepts or ideas can get represented in the mind of an individual would not take us far toward an account of why individuals understand the world the way they do, or explain why their understanding differs from that of their ancestors." in her essay A Day in the Life of a Meme.

Perhaps the most misunderstood Palestinian since Jesus, Edward Said is a remarkable human. It takes incredible courage to tell the truth when entire value systems and ideologies rest on mutually agreed upon deceptions. "One must always begin one's resistance at home, against power that as a citizen one can influence; but alas, a fluent nationalism masking itself as patriotism and moral concern has taken over the critical consciousness, which then puts loyalty to one's "nation" before everything. At that point there is only the treason of the intellectuals, and complete moral bankruptcy."
To be fair, here is a critical analysis of the man.

This is a book by Jeremy Bentham to remember!....."Deontology: or The Science of Morality: in which the harmony and coincidence of Duty and Self-Interest, Virtue and Felicity, Prudence and Benevolence, are explained and exemplified. From the MSS. of Jeremy Bentham. Arranged and Edited by John Bowring." This is from Chapter 12 of Henry Hazlitt's 1964 "The Foundations of Morality"

"Is the light I see in my mind the same light as the light I see in the world?" Alice in Quantum Land is a great little fable for the budding cosmic flower in us all.

Stanley R. Carpenter brought to my attention one of those words that brings more depth of understanding by its' very use. "I wish to build on the now accepted fact that anthropogenic activity, what has been descriptively termed "technometabolism," has grown in scale to the point that it rivals in environmental impact some of the earth's natural systems."

What is sophrosyne? The Greeks tried to cultivate it, we have no word for it; and this essay claims we have even lost the concept of it. I see it as yet another statement of the "perennial philosophy"

The insights and foresights in this article are great reading any time. Vannevar Bush writes in The Atlantic Monthly of July 1945 on the role of science, and especially physics, in the post-war, ante-information age.

""It" is not a thing, not a substance nor a subject. We cannot answer the question in a present-at-hand way. What we can do is to try to find the right way to be "with"it." Befindlichkeit is a term introduced by Heidegger to describe how I am with where I am. Choice is dealing with what is, rather than a projection of what might be or was. Robert G. Fox of The Institute for Existential-Psychoanalytic Therapy presents an essay on thrownness

"Yet how on earth are consciousness, mathematics and the quantum field(etc)-theoretic ontology of mainstream physics to be brought together in practice? " Why Does Anything Exist is a good start at asking the right questions, as well as laying a firm ground of not-knowing into which we may slide our understanding of what it's likeness.

Coming at this from the philosophical rather than mathematical angle, Arthur Witherall asks "why is there something instead of nothing?" Existence is mysterious, and the philosophically tantalising aspect of the awestruck response to something instead of nothing is the idea that we can come so close to the mystery as to feel it in our bones, even while we believe it to be irresolvable.

Huxley's satirical fiction Brave New World has caused a cultural resistance to happiness engineering, says this review. "And it is we, trapped in the emotional squalor of late-Darwinian antiquity, who neither know nor understand the lives of the god-like super-beings we are destined to become. "

Seymour Boorstein builds upon his classical training as a psychiatrist to show the dramatic results of blending the traditional with the transpersonal approach to psychotherapy. A review by Ken Wilber.

You could describe this book simply as a rather nice history of the number zero. You could also describe it as nothing less than a history of the human race's philosophical struggle with the idea of nothingness. In his tome 'The Nothing That Is', Andrew Leahy writes what is probably the only book-length history of a natural number ever written, and he does a good job of it. It is not flawless (-0-), however.

"Enlightenment thinkers knew a lot about everything, today's specialists know a lot about a little, and postmodernists doubt that we can know anything at all." Atlantic Monthly presents the idea that perhaps the thinkers of 'the enlightenment' had it right in the first place, in an essay entitled Back From Chaos

David Bohm makes a proposal that we ignore at our deepest peril. Dialogue, as we are choosing to use the word, is a way of exploring the roots of the many crises that face humanity today.

Here is a criticism of the Theist logic:
1.Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
2.The universe began to exist.
3.Therefore, the universe has a cause.
by means of scientific cosmology.

Ken Wilber's statement "That the ultimate state, you can never attain, because you literally have never left it.", neatly sums things up.

Apart from references to the arousal of kundalini in ancient documents and modern writings on the subject, there has been no objective demonstration of the phenomenon in recent times. Here's an in-depth look at the physical aspects of cosmic consciousness.

Here's another mind-bending postulation by Max Tegmark. In this paper, it is suggested that most of this (the universe's) information is merely apparent, as seen from our subjective viewpoints, and that the algorithmic information content of the universe as a whole is close to zero.

To fully immerse myself in the mid-week "can we be serious for a moment" state, I finally got down and read the full text of this Warning to Humanity.

This small monograph is not an exposition of new facts or theories, but an invitation to look at known facts and theories from another point of view, with new, different, integrating purpose. The seven features of all world views; and an invitation to keep an eye on the whole while investigating the parts.

Ben Goertzel presents his e-book "Wild Computing, Steps Toward a Philosophy of Internet Intelligence" And I take it for granted that computer programs can be conscious -- ignoring the "problem" of computer consciousness just as I ignore the "problem" of human consciousness every day, as I interact with other humans.
I do think that (this is a 140k download link)"Fred", my hard drive psychologist, is smarter than many human ones I have met.

The Alan Watts forum is a good place to get involved with discussion of fundamental issues.
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