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What are we afraid of?


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#1    coberst

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Posted 04 June 2009 - 10:09 AM

What are we afraid of?

Humans are pattern recognition creatures. We survive by the patterns of which we are conscious. Math is the science pattern; we use it constantly to explore the deepest core of nature’s pattern. To be an enlightened citizen is to be a citizen who has rationally organized a matrix of pattern detecting systems.

We have in our genes some pattern detecting systems. When hiking in the woods I am occasionally stopped in my tracks with a deep chill by some kind of form or movement. Among this infinity of movement and pattern one particular set penetrates my consciousness. We have evolved with this detection system so as to survive the predators.

Artifacts have replaced tigers and bears.  Our predators were once tigers and bears but today they are humans and artifacts (something created by humans).  

A steady diet of Twinkies and chips leads to a fat gut; a steady diet of sound bites and bumper stickers leads to a fat head!

Knowing is like day breaking, understanding is like lightening striking.

Comprehension is the payoff for struggle. There is a hierarchy of comprehension. Like a pyramid with the base being awareness, followed by consciousness (awareness plus attention) then comes knowledge with understanding at the pinnacle of the pyramid.

We are meaning creating creatures; we constantly create things in which we place value.  We create various ideologies such as nations, religions, political parties, economic theories, and we create wars, new technologies, cars, cell phones, shopping malls, bombs, complex financial systems, etc.  Many of our creations are too complex and their effects are far beyond our ability to comprehend and to control.  If we do not become more intellectually sophisticated our artifacts will destroy us.

Reading is the key to knowing and essay writing is the canvas for creating understanding.

Of all the creatures perhaps humans are the only ones who fail to live up to their potential. Obesity is the evidence of a lack of physical endeavor and boredom is the consequence of an apathetic and lazy brain.

Reading is fundamental.  Writing is the art and science of creation.

We can take any policy issue that might enrage any one of us and we can discover that the root cause of it is the fact that we the citizens are not doing our job. In a liberal democracy wherein the sovereignty rests on the shoulders of the citizen any outrage committed by that society can ultimately be traced back to the lack of enlightenment by the citizen.

Enlightened does not equal informed. Information flows over us in a daily deluge but consciousness is the missing catalyst for action. Our daily dose of information might be compared to our drive to work each morning. We are deluged with information reaching our perception on our drive to work and very little of that information becomes an object of consciousness.

I think that if we make the intellectual effort to understand some domain of knowledge and perhaps take the additional effort to write out our understanding of that matter, our essay will serve as our pattern for recognition for matters pertinent to that domain.

I consider that writing an essay is a major means for reaching an understanding of a domain of knowledge.

I think that these forums offer a great opportunity for practicing our writing skills. Do you agree? Is writing in your wallet?




#2    Mr Walker

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Posted 04 June 2009 - 10:36 AM

Nice post. As to the fears part, i was reading that many fears, particularly phobias, are created in childhood. Inherently, humans do not need to fear anything, but unfortunately, like many things, fear is a learned response. The good news is that, using modern psychology and science, all phobias can be overcome . Also humans can be taught how not to fear.
Fear has an evolutionary purpose, but it is often counter intuitive for a sapient being. Sapience produces a range of processes and responses which are much more productive and survival oriented than simple fear.
I enjoyed the rest of your post and agreed with much of it, but i think you are a bit hard on people. Learning to think effectively is a complex process. it requires a well functioning brain without damage or induced effects which diminish capacity.

It also requires a huge accumulated data base of knowledge to make the most of effective thought processes. But the main stumbling block is in recognising the complex organic and learned  factors which allow and encourage effective thinking.

Not only do we need to understand memory, to utilise it effectively, we should understand the significance of symbolism and the historical development of sapience/intelligence.

Finally we have to be taught to think using multiple intelligences. True logical/rational thought has only been recognised and developed late in mans evolution. Philosphical thought even later. Emotional/intuitive reasoning is perhaps the oldest form of thought/intelligence, and spiritual reasoning, using known qualities of the human mind to infer knowledge about our external environment and to categorise knowledge about ourselves is at least as old as the development of true sapience in humanity.

Thus, to think effectively we need to know, recognise, understand and be able to control / manipulate our thought processes, using all theses intelligences. Further, to be completely effective, we need to be able to consciously contact our subconscious and be able to recognise it and control /manipulate our subconscious mind as much as our conscious one. Very few humans ever fully achieve this. Most never even begin the voyage of discovery.

However, i agree with you ,that reading and writing are twin core processes, essential for effective thinking. Essay writing helps in organising and processing data, but many other forms also need to be mastered for different purposes. Even then, communication is limited by the misunderstanding and misapplication of words, and the concepts and symbols attached to words. Thus, one person's words and meanings can appear completely different to a second person who speaks the same language, but has different ways of attaching concepts and symbols to words.

I did enjoy your post original.gif

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#3    coberst

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Posted 04 June 2009 - 07:57 PM

Mr Walker

I think that most normal humans have the ability to learn CT (Critical Thinking).  I wish that our American school system taught our students not just what to think but how to think.

CT is an acronym for Critical Thinking.  Everybody considers themselves to be a critical thinker.  That is why we need to differentiate among different levels of critical thinking.

Most people fall in the category that I call Reagan thinkers—trust but verify.  Then there are those who have taken the basic college course taught by the philosophy dept that I call Logic 101.  This is a credit course that teaches the basic principles of reasoning.  Of course, a person need not take the college course and can learn the matter on their own effort, but I suspect few do that.

The third level I call CT (Critical Thinking).  CT includes the knowledge of Logic 101 and also the knowledge that focuses upon the intellectual character and attitude of critical thinking.  It includes knowledge regarding the ego and social centric forces that impede rational thinking.

Most decisions we have to make are judgment calls.  A judgment call is made when we must make a decision when there is no “true” or “false” answers.  When we make a judgment call our decision is bad, good, or better.

Many factors are involved: there are the available facts, assumptions, skills, knowledge, and especially personal experience and attitude.  I think that the two most important elements in the mix are personal experience and attitude.

When we study math we learn how to use various algorithms to facilitate our skill in dealing with quantities.  If we never studied math we could deal with quantity on a primary level but our quantifying ability would be minimal.  Likewise with making judgments; if we study the art and science of good judgment we can make better decisions and if we never study the art and science of judgment our decision ability will remain minimal.

I am convinced that a fundamental problem we have in this country (USA) is that our citizens have never learned the art and science of good judgment.  Before the recent introduction of CT into our schools and colleges our young people have been taught primarily what to think and not how to think.  All of us graduated with insufficient comprehension of the knowledge, skills, and attitude necessary for the formulation of good judgment.  The result of this inability to make good judgment is evident and is dangerous.

I am primarily interested in the judgment that adults exercise in regard to public issues.  Of course, any improvement in judgment generally will affect both personal and community matters.

To put the matter into a nut shell:  
1. Normal men and women can significantly improve their ability to make judgments.
2. CT is the domain of knowledge that delineates the knowledge, skills, and intellectual character demanded for good judgment.
3. CT has been introduced into our schools and colleges slowly in the last two or three decades.
4. Few of today’s adults were ever taught CT.
5. I suspect that at least another two generations will pass before our society reaps significant rewards resulting from teaching CT to our children.
6. Can our democracy survive that long?
7. I think that every effort must be made to convince today’s adults that they need to study and learn CT on their own.  I am not suggesting that adults find a teacher but I am suggesting that adults become self-actualizing learners.
8. I am convinced that learning the art and science of Critical Thinking is an important step toward becoming a better citizen in today’s democratic society.





#4    Virtual Particle

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 01:28 AM

There was a Personality Theorist in the 70s (her name escapes me) She postulated the conclusion that during the days of Abraham and Moses mankind did not really have good communication skills between the
Hemispheres of the Brain. This being a factor in why they heard the voice of God. She was not arguing that God did not exist, rather that this lack of capacity which today is the norm hampered mankind and so
therefore they heard voices which were applicable as a favorable quality as it aided survival. Things like for example the Magna Carta represent a change in perhaps how we reacted to problems. We are at this point now and yes a lot of garbage in, garbage out but clouded from the context of entertainment is going on, what we need to come to terms with is that we are all holding the batton.
.




Any thoughts?

Edited by Triad, 05 June 2009 - 01:28 AM.

Time is a form of communication
Consciousness transcends all states
that can be perceived as matter
Matter communicates its existence
to consciousness through time        
Man is infinite
God is more
Black Hole Creates Spectacular Light Show

#5    greggK

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 12:50 PM

Do y'all remember 'Kung Fu?'  You know, 'Grasshopper, take the pebble from my hand.'  David Carradine, he was my hero when I was a kid.  
What scares me is that a man 72 years old who was my hero might have developed a mind that would allow such a thought to enter that would lead me to commit an act that would wipe me out of the program of this world.  
They discovered David Carradine in a Thailand hotel closet yesterday morning dead of an apparent asphyxiation after a probable sex act went wrong.  Scary.

This is SHOCKING!  

Quote

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- David Carradine's wife and his manager disputed suggestions that the actor's death was a suicide, while rescue workers and police in Bangkok, Thailand, said the actor's neck and genitals were found bound with rope.
David Carradine was the star of the 1970s TV series, "Kung Fu," and appeared in more than 100 films.

David Carradine was the star of the 1970s TV series, "Kung Fu," and appeared in more than 100 films.
more photos »

Carradine, 72, became famous in the 1970s, when he portrayed the traveling Shaolin monk Kwai Chang Caine in the television series "Kung Fu."

Bangkok police said Carradine was found hanging by a nylon rope in a Bangkok hotel room closet Thursday morning.

A member of the emergency crew who was called to the hotel after a maid found Carradine told CNN that a yellow nylon rope was tied around the actor's neck and a black rope was around his genitals. Police later confirmed that information.






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#6    greggK

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 01:08 PM

Triad is waving the baton to direct the dirge.

It is me!

#7    Mr Walker

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 07:21 AM

Triad on Jun 5 2009, 10:58 AM, said:

There was a Personality Theorist in the 70s (her name escapes me) She postulated the conclusion that during the days of Abraham and Moses mankind did not really have good communication skills between the
Hemispheres of the Brain. This being a factor in why they heard the voice of God. She was not arguing that God did not exist, rather that this lack of capacity which today is the norm hampered mankind and so
therefore they heard voices which were applicable as a favorable quality as it aided survival. Things like for example the Magna Carta represent a change in perhaps how we reacted to problems. We are at this point now and yes a lot of garbage in, garbage out but clouded from the context of entertainment is going on, what we need to come to terms with is that we are all holding the batton.
.




Any thoughts?

I very much doubt that either evolutioary theory or that of cognitive development would allow for such a major development, organicaly or in processing, so late in human evolution. I suspect that cromagnon men  thought just as modern men do, and had brains with almost identical organic and processing ability.

Two identifiable differences with modern man is that we have a much larger pooled, and thus individual, data base of knowledge( ie children learn what the sun is and basically what gravity is almost from birth via the assumptions and knowlege of those around them.)

We have also recognised how brains work and actually learned how to teach and use systems of thought which utilise various aspects of sapience. One such is logical thinking , another formal form is philosophy, while music and mathematics offer other strategies for identifying patterns etc.

Through evolutionary thinking and biology we can see, understand, and utilise or counteract the environmental and biological imperatives which fundamentally drive us as a species and for so long  ruled our decision making processes.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#8    greggK

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 12:48 PM

Another thought:  Adam and Eve did not meld properly.   grin2.gif

You notice all the inner planets have comet-holes all over them like they were semi-solid planets at one time.  Look at a photo of Mars.  You can even see how the surface just flowed like lava.  Lovers just flow together into a mold; they meld.  
One of my distant relatives, maybe a cousin, Margaret Mead was an Anthropologist and sociologist.

Quote

And so, as Mead herself described the goal of her research: "I have tried to answer the question which sent me to Samoa: Are the disturbances which vex our adolescents due to the nature of adolescence itself or to the civilization? Under different conditions does adolescence present a different picture?"


She noticed in her research that other cultures were not as afraid as we are in the US.  We are Constrained and Restrained at the same time.  We are being forced back from something that we have not gotten to yet.  Laws have been made to prohibit you from doing something that you would not do in the first place.

It is me!

#9    Virtual Particle

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 10:14 PM

Mr Walker on Jun 6 2009, 03:21 AM, said:

I very much doubt that either evolutioary theory or that of cognitive development would allow for such a major development, organicaly or in processing, so late in human evolution. I suspect that cromagnon men  thought just as modern men do, and had brains with almost identical organic and processing ability.

Two identifiable differences with modern man is that we have a much larger pooled, and thus individual, data base of knowledge( ie children learn what the sun is and basically what gravity is almost from birth via the assumptions and knowlege of those around them.)

We have also recognised how brains work and actually learned how to teach and use systems of thought which utilise various aspects of sapience. One such is logical thinking , another formal form is philosophy, while music and mathematics offer other strategies for identifying patterns etc.

Through evolutionary thinking and biology we can see, understand, and utilise or counteract the environmental and biological imperatives which fundamentally drive us as a species and for so long  ruled our decision making processes.


Our inherent decision making process involve the collection and maintenance of women (no offence ladies innocent.gif ) and given today's style of living in the free world; lets face it we all want to be James Bond (we even have presented a significant amount of female equivalents and to be specific that is related to war). If Cro-Magnon thought as well as we did human life would not have the value it has today (I feel). I mean that in the old west (North American United States in the 1800's there really was a guy who killed another guy for snoring and he got away with it). Personally I would like to feel in respect to absolutes that mankind has not evolved with respect to recent history but specifically what examples would you like to provide?

Any thoughts?

PS:Puctuated Equalibrium can potentially explain somethings but to everything???

Edited by Triad, 06 June 2009 - 10:26 PM.

Time is a form of communication
Consciousness transcends all states
that can be perceived as matter
Matter communicates its existence
to consciousness through time        
Man is infinite
God is more
Black Hole Creates Spectacular Light Show

#10    Sherapy

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 10:27 PM

coberst on Jun 4 2009, 12:57 PM, said:

Mr Walker

I think that most normal humans have the ability to learn CT (Critical Thinking).  I wish that our American school system taught our students not just what to think but how to think.

CT is an acronym for Critical Thinking.  Everybody considers themselves to be a critical thinker.  That is why we need to differentiate among different levels of critical thinking.

Most people fall in the category that I call Reagan thinkers—trust but verify.  Then there are those who have taken the basic college course taught by the philosophy dept that I call Logic 101.  This is a credit course that teaches the basic principles of reasoning.  Of course, a person need not take the college course and can learn the matter on their own effort, but I suspect few do that.

The third level I call CT (Critical Thinking).  CT includes the knowledge of Logic 101 and also the knowledge that focuses upon the intellectual character and attitude of critical thinking.  It includes knowledge regarding the ego and social centric forces that impede rational thinking.

Most decisions we have to make are judgment calls.  A judgment call is made when we must make a decision when there is no "true" or "false" answers.  When we make a judgment call our decision is bad, good, or better.

Many factors are involved: there are the available facts, assumptions, skills, knowledge, and especially personal experience and attitude.  I think that the two most important elements in the mix are personal experience and attitude.

When we study math we learn how to use various algorithms to facilitate our skill in dealing with quantities.  If we never studied math we could deal with quantity on a primary level but our quantifying ability would be minimal.  Likewise with making judgments; if we study the art and science of good judgment we can make better decisions and if we never study the art and science of judgment our decision ability will remain minimal.

I am convinced that a fundamental problem we have in this country (USA) is that our citizens have never learned the art and science of good judgment.  Before the recent introduction of CT into our schools and colleges our young people have been taught primarily what to think and not how to think.  All of us graduated with insufficient comprehension of the knowledge, skills, and attitude necessary for the formulation of good judgment.  The result of this inability to make good judgment is evident and is dangerous.

I am primarily interested in the judgment that adults exercise in regard to public issues.  Of course, any improvement in judgment generally will affect both personal and community matters.

To put the matter into a nut shell:  
1. Normal men and women can significantly improve their ability to make judgments.
2. CT is the domain of knowledge that delineates the knowledge, skills, and intellectual character demanded for good judgment.
3. CT has been introduced into our schools and colleges slowly in the last two or three decades.
4. Few of today's adults were ever taught CT.
5. I suspect that at least another two generations will pass before our society reaps significant rewards resulting from teaching CT to our children.
6. Can our democracy survive that long?
7. I think that every effort must be made to convince today's adults that they need to study and learn CT on their own.  I am not suggesting that adults find a teacher but I am suggesting that adults become self-actualizing learners.
8. I am convinced that learning the art and science of Critical Thinking is an important step toward becoming a better citizen in today's democratic society.


excellent post... grin2.gif


#11    coberst

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 12:54 PM


I have been studying such things as our dread of death and how we repress this subject of our mortality because it causes us great anxiety.

In my effort to comprehend what this anxiety might be in its raw form I have constructed what I think might be useful in that understanding.

Suppose that we were placed on a platform high above the ground and were required to live there.  And suppose that there were no guard rails on the boundary of the platform.

Do you think that this might be a useful imagination to help us understand these matters?



#12    Virtual Particle

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 04:58 PM

A very valid threat exists to life in that circumstance I mean given how much movement is evident in sleep studies.

In my case (I means as an example) being forced to deal with that  angry.gif

Any thoughts?

Time is a form of communication
Consciousness transcends all states
that can be perceived as matter
Matter communicates its existence
to consciousness through time        
Man is infinite
God is more
Black Hole Creates Spectacular Light Show

#13    behaviour???

behaviour???

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 05:22 PM

Communication is the key to future as you always no it and so this forum gives us a lot of interaction through writing and every forms of human knowledge
Scientifically our knoewldge databse is opened immediately to make quick decesion which is directly being influenced by our brain which enable  our extra domian knowledge and why we have been classified as humans
Thanks
B???

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#14    Mr Walker

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 02:23 AM

Triad on Jun 7 2009, 07:44 AM, said:

Our inherent decision making process involve the collection and maintenance of women (no offence ladies innocent.gif ) and given today's style of living in the free world; lets face it we all want to be James Bond (we even have presented a significant amount of female equivalents and to be specific that is related to war). If Cro-Magnon thought as well as we did human life would not have the value it has today (I feel). I mean that in the old west (North American United States in the 1800's there really was a guy who killed another guy for snoring and he got away with it). Personally I would like to feel in respect to absolutes that mankind has not evolved with respect to recent history but specifically what examples would you like to provide?

Any thoughts?

PS:Puctuated Equalibrium can potentially explain somethings but to everything???

Im not at all sure i have a clue what you are talking about there.
Men today are biologically driven exactly the same as cromagnon men. Thus their basic drives towards women are the same. Society creates a set of social constructs and expectations which delineate how men should treat women. Men are taught these social constructs and expectations. Then men must decide whether to follow them, or resort to more primitive drives, attitudes, and instincts.

A mans choice will be driven /informed by many things, from his own genetics, through to how his own father treated women. It will have regard to his wider ethics/morality, and how far he is constrained by either public opinion or law.

Nothing has changed since cromagnon times, except for our knowledge /data bases, both public and private, which inform our decision making. Thus we treat women differently now, not because we are innately any better or more moral beings, but because, while exactly the same beings, our inner and outer environmental stimuli (and restraints) have changed We have personal and social knowledge which cromagnon man did not have. That knowledge largely(but not always) impells us to make different decisions.

Social knowledge includes religious teachings, manners and etiquette/social expectations,  along with a more informed knowledge of human biology and biological responses. Thus a modern man has many more productive responses open to him in his approach to a woman, than the cromagnon man did.
Personal knowledge involves the processing of social knowledge in many ways, from logic to emotional reflection, to make better /more successful and educated decisions, and  create internalised values, ethics, and moralities, which inform how we choose to interact with the outside universe
Some men find this confusing, others very empowering and liberating.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world..

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

#15    greggK

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 04:33 PM

Mr Walker on Jun 6 2009, 02:21 AM, said:

I very much doubt that either evolutioary theory or that of cognitive development would allow for such a major development, organicaly or in processing, so late in human evolution. I suspect that cromagnon men  thought just as modern men do, and had brains with almost identical organic and processing ability.

Two identifiable differences with modern man is that we have a much larger pooled, and thus individual, data base of knowledge( ie children learn what the sun is and basically what gravity is almost from birth via the assumptions and knowlege of those around them.)

We have also recognised how brains work and actually learned how to teach and use systems of thought which utilise various aspects of sapience. One such is logical thinking , another formal form is philosophy, while music and mathematics offer other strategies for identifying patterns etc.

Through evolutionary thinking and biology we can see, understand, and utilise or counteract the environmental and biological imperatives which fundamentally drive us as a species and for so long  ruled our decision making processes.


We have no other choice but to follow the direction of past decisions.  That, in my view, is not evolution, but adaptation.  Evolution is system-wide.  Just the gaining of knowledge is not a signal of anything but the duration of time and the ability to use the environment.  Mankind of whatever kind has always had the ability to use the environment the way they do now, the environment had to evolve.  It had to be built to match the ability.


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