Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Random Thoughts Part 6

Sometimes I feel truly alive and thoughts come to me and I see the beauty that exists in the world. Then I am reminded that I am at work and it is in my job description to squash such feelings. Here are some thoughts I managed to scribble down and sneak out of the corporation that owns me 8 hours a day:

Too often we submit to the herd instinct rather than tap into the group intelligence.

Have you ever found yourself cursing at an inanimate object, a wrench or tool that slipped and smashed your fingers? Of course you have, it happens all the time. How many times do we blame people equally as innocent? The dice are against me. The world is against me. In truth, the world is likely as indifferent to you as a pair of dice.

Even our sense of smell is better equipped to judge the outside world than our intellect, but the intellect is better at convincing us it is right. Think about it, if something does not seem right but our mind cannot find a reason against it, we say that “something smells rotten” or “it doesn’t pass the smell test. For one day, abandon reason for scent and see if it does not make you happier.

Simplistic ideas are the weapons with which the thoughtful are clubbed.

I often hear people ponder about humankind, what is so unique about us that we have come to dominate the planet over all God’s other creatures. What vanity. It is like Babylon pondering what made their civilization superior to all others, or a child contemplating how he got to be king of the hill. It is a thing of the moment.

When we abandon our gods, we cease to be human.

The gulf between liberals and conservatives is not as vast as the gulf between the people and their leaders. But our leaders do everything in their power to keep us focused on the former rather than the latter.

The essential knowledge of the virtues civilization needs is embedded in the great religions. I cannot think of another institution they inhabit.

Once art served to educate and edify, now it distracts and amuses.

We used to base our hopes in the idea that tomorrow would be the same as today. Now our hope lies in a future radically transformed from what we have. We have switched from relying on the natural world to relying on technology. We base our hopes on our ability to game the system.

Sometimes you cannot trust the goodness in another until you can see it in yourself.

There are books that contain within them more life than many who draw breath, ideas and words that are worth living for and dying for.

The problem is not that the right path is seldom known, it is that it appears to be the more imposing path to take. But in reality, while it starts out through brambles and rough road, it is in the end the straighter one.

Art helps you connect to the world, not escape from it. That is the difference between art and entertainment.

We live in a world of distractions, and distractions--by definition--are never important. Nobody has ever been distracted from a video game by a novel or a philosophical treatise.

They call them living rooms but they are not, they are shrines to television. In them, no living occurs, merely passive viewing.

Though there are advantages to it, never allow yourself to become too practical. It is a short step from practical to cynical.

My doctor just diagnosed me with attention deficit oh, look, a clicky pen.

All religions have begun as a movement to counteract previous religions.

Christianity was founded on faith, hope, and love, not on a book.

People are always being forced into choosing either A or B. Just remember that there’s always at least a third option. That is what makes humans better than computers.

The larger world is mostly built by little men with little minds who have little idea of what it is they have helped form.

A society that spends its wealth on machines that can read genes cares no more about morality than one that spends its wealth on churches cares about science.

The movies and books I enjoyed as a child usually had villains that were sympathetic and were simply good people twisted by misfortune. Now it seems rare to find a story where even the hero is very sympathetic.

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