More God Stuff…

Jim Jeffries, comedian: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o5TlR0K7ASA

Gets a big laugh out of rubbishing people who believe in God.

But he leaves something out.

The existence or otherwise of God depends on your definition of God.

Self evident.  But largely ignored.  I’d say about totally ignored in any and all discussions on God/religion.

My God exists without any doubt at all.  Because of the definition I have for my God.

I have the same God as the first human being had.

I turn my face towards the same God.  I plead with the same God for safety, food, warmth, shelter, happiness, health, good fortune.

And I do it the same way, at the same time.

At times of distress, need, panic, danger, hurt, turmoil, etc…

And I do it instinctively and inchoately.

My being puts out a plea for help, for mercy, for abatement of suffering, for chance to bend my way…..

and it doesn’t specify the target of that plea.

Specification of the target comes later.  With reminiscence.  With retrospective contemplation of what one has done.

And then begins the construct, the religious construct, the mapping out of the unmappable, the defining of the undefinable, the naming of the unnamable…..

Having sent a message out from the self to something other one in retrospect needs to understand to at least some extent what one was sending a message to.

And we come up with all kinds of explanations and they usually devolve into some kind of supreme being, some kind of ‘divine’ being – a god or gods.

But all those explanations beg the question, they don’t answer it.

We are praying to reality.

We invent those gods after we’ve prayed. Not before. First is the impulse and the act, later is the rationalisation and the con men and the bullshit.

And when we pray in the first instance we are praying to reality. We are asking reality to change itself to suit us.  We want circumstances to change,  our ‘fortune’ to change.  We want changes in physical reality – food to appear, game to be got, crops to be harvested – and changes in the more insubstantial aspects of reality  –  good ‘luck’ to come, happy coincidences and opportunities etc…

Physically substantial or more ephemeral they’re all changes in reality.

We are talking to, praying to, Reality, and asking it to change. For us.

That’s our God: Reality.

That’s who we pray to: Reality.

That’s where the answers come from: Reality.

That’s my God and my God is real: Reality.

 

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Remembering Nothing

Anzac day tomorrow here in Australia.

That’s the day when we remember our soldiers and most particularly those who fought in a place called Gallipolli in Turkey in the First World War.

It’ll be covered for Australia Radio National by an Australian lady journalist of Turkish heritage I believe.

Highlighting the fact that we’re the best of friends now, Turks and Australians.

Nothing surprising about that is there?  Germans and English. Japanese and Americans.  We’re all the best of friends.

Until the next time.

When our leaders tell us it’s time to pick up our guns and go on the warpath to maim and kill our ‘best of friends’.

Turn the clock back and we were the best of friends then, too, if only we’d known it.  If only we’d been able to know it.

Like blind cattle we mill around in our staging camps and home garrisons waiting to be sent forth to the slaughter. Either to slaughter or be slaughtered.

For we know not what.  For ‘our country’, for our leaders…. for nothing but to follow like sheep, for nothing but to avoid shame before our peers….

The tragedy of the world is how we prey upon ourselves.

I think war memorials are a time to reflect upon that tragedy just as much as to reflect upon the bravery and the agony.

We owe it to their bravery and their agony to reflect upon the broader picture.

 

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Wonderful Words From A Teacher

Here’s what one teacher has to say – a Principal, no less, said it to me (or showed me the text) :

” I’ve come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element in the classroom.

My personal approach creates a climate. My daily mood makes the weather.

As a teacher I possess a tremendous power to make a child’s life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration. I can humiliate or humour, hurt of heal.

In all situations it is my response that decides whether a crisis will be escalated or de-escalated and the child humanised or dehumanised. ”

I think this is a totally excellent understanding.

Those words are from Haim Ginott author of the celebrated book ‘Between Parent and Child’.

Here is part of his Wikipedia entry:

Haim G. Ginott (originally Ginzburg) (1922–1973) was a school teacher, a child psychologist and psychotherapist and a parent educator. He pioneered techniques for conversing with children that are still taught today. His book, Between Parent and Child, stayed on the best seller list for over a year and is still popular today. This book sets out to give “specific advice derived from basic communication principles that will guide parents in living with children in mutual respect and dignity.”

Brought to my attention by the Principal of Murray Bridge Primary School: Mr Graham Alder, and I’m grateful for that.

It seems to me to be of such tremendous importance because I feel it applies to all of us in all our interactions – not simply to the teacher/child interaction.

It is a kind of fundamental human truth that we all should be schooled in from the earliest years.

Though it is presented as material for the consideration of teachers it’s just much material for all of us.  And not only that, but it is just as much material for the growing child, of course.

It should not be at all a startling or illuminating concept. It should be a ‘taken for granted’ concept, a knowledge within which we all live.

🙂

 

 

 

 

 

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Things Are Worse Than You Think

Bit Awful (with a capital ‘A’) that last post, wasn’t it?

Doomy. Gloomy.  Sad. Depressing.

But the facts are even worse than that.

It talked about the facts of the history of the human race, all the bloodshed, the shocking violence, the awful calamities, whatever…

But it is worse than that.  Because it is all happening right now. Today.

I was thinking this the other day. And today. And a few days ago. Recurring for a few weeks now.

It goes like this:  Think of the most awful thing you can. The most awful agony. The most terrible, painful, horrible way to die.

Imagine you are an author making a living by writing horror stories, or dramas or something – with the fertile imagination of such an author…  given that it is fiction just let your head run wild…

Think of anything you like. In the most graphic detail. Sort  of like watching an execution in slow motion, or going over the details of a witch burning with great precision, leaving nothing out, measuring the effect of every increase in heat, every wound inflicted…

Something like that.

Dwell on pain and horror for a while. Build a picture. Get the whole terrible fictional thing built.

And then think: somewhere in the world it is happening now.

No matter how terrible it is, how awful, how  horrible, the chances are it is happening right now either accidentally or by design.

The accidents of fate easily bring about the most terrible lingering deaths – imagine crushed to death in an earthquake… caught by a limb, alive but trapped, moving only centimetres of wriggling room.. slowly dying of thirst, hunger… pain throughout….

Easily imagined in earthquake building collapse.

And the consider what people deliberately do to each other when in conflict….

And consider what they accidentally do to each other when in conflict ( ‘collateral damage’ )….

Yes. Don’t consider it. It is too awful to think about.

It’s all  happening now.  Right now.

Wonder what’s on t.v.

Maybe a nice cooking show.  Wonder if I can find a recipe for cream cake with chocolate and icing….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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It Should Die Out

The whole human race should die out. It is a joke, a sick joke. It is Hell. This is where Hell is. This is where Heaven is. This is where it all is. This is it. And it is, on balance, awful, terrible, painful, shocking, disgusting… and so on.. endless list of downer adjectives.
Anyone with children knows how awful they are by nature, what a totally insane world they make you live in.. anyone with any interest knows what a mess the whole world is in with people in dire trouble by the millions in every corner of the world and those in luxury (us, me, you) caring nothing. Anyone with any sense of the history of the human race knows how it is a history of terrible ferocity, part of humanity eternally preying on the other part, inflicting terrible damage, terrible wounds, terrible suffering…
A shocking, awful, dismal history. A disgusting, disgraceful present. Peopled by animals that start off demonstrably awful, unfit.
And for what? Has anyone ever demonstrated a purpose? No.
Religions, particularly the Islam/Judeo/Christian claim to have found a purpose: ‘to please God’ but it is unsupported by any evidence whatever.
It seems obvious the ‘purpose’ is simply the reality doing its own thing part of which turns out to be becoming conscious of itself as manifest by ourselves.
Or: the stardust that makes up the universe or the totality of all universes or whatever, the whole of everything – that inanimate matter somehow naturally organises itself in such a way that ultimately it arrives at where it has created such as us. ‘Human’ beings that can see the universe and contemplate the universe and know we are part of it, we are of it. We are nothing else but it.
What it is, we are. We are inseparable. The cosmos cannot be separated from us and we cannot be separated from it. We are one and the same. It penetrates us continually by radiation, etc., the energetic manifestations of it penetrate us eternally quite apart from the gross penetration of breathing. And we penetrate it in a reciprocal way.
So we are one. One.
Se we are the universe and we are conscious of ourselves.
We, the universe, are/is conscious.
And that’s all its all about.
And that’s all it needs to be about.
And having done it, having achieved it, having become it – a sentient universe courtesy of our own selves – then what’s the next step?
No one knows. No one can know.
But all indications are that a good next step would be to abdicate. To vacate the stage.
Clean the place up by getting out of it.
In a natural way if we can ever do anything in a natural way.
Just die out.
Stop having children and let the race die out.
And let the universe continue without the added nastiness, drama, filth, hurt, hatred and awfulness of ourselves.

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New Way To Live

Some time ago I surmised we need a new way to live.

I don’t have one. I don’t know. What I do know is that part of it would be the idea of taking individual responsibility far, far more than we do currently.

It is time for human beings to stop slavishly following ‘leaders’ and fashions and trends.

They all lead into mobs and witch hunts and stupid agressive arguments.

All over the world people fighting and killing each other or horrifically maiming men, women, children indiscriminately and where are most of the casualties?  With the combatants?

No. Never, I’d say. Just about never.  The casualties are always with the non-combatants.  Who then, if they survive, have a greater likelihood of  being combatants.

Stands to reason. With the best will in the world if you come and kill or injure my people it is going to be very hard for me not to want to come and kill and injure you and yours.

Unless one gets so effected by the stupidity and horror of it all that one sheers off from all violence and hatred.  That’s not infrequent, I think. A fairly well known reaction.

But more commonly, turn into a hatred-filled fighter yourself.

But why did this begin? Why were the civilians attacked, if it was deliberate?

Because of their ‘leaders’. Nominally their leaders. i.e. the organisation they ostensibly belong to.  Most particularly religious organisations but not exclusively so at all, of course.

So Sunni attack Shia and vice versa.

And Muslim attacks Christian.

And what I’m saying is we need personal responsibility in at least two ways right there:

1.  Don’t attack anyone simply because your group says that’s what we’re going to do.  Especially don’t simply attack another group. That’s non-specific to an illegitimate extent.

2. Don’t belong to a group without a good reason – and religious groups don’t have a good reason for the most part.  Our job is to make our relationship with our own God good.  To have things straight between yourself and your God.

There’s no need whatever to belong to some association or group of motley people with motley beliefs and actions and all loosely directed by some self-styled leader who dictates what you believe before you even know it yourself and what you should therefore do, who you should hate, who you should attack.

Yes, it may well be that some religions say precisely the opposite to that.

Well those are clearly religions not to ‘belong’ to.

But it is time to stop ‘belonging’ because the price is too high.

‘Belong’ to those who think independently.  That’s who you should belong to.

And shun wholesale condemnation and indiscriminate attack and callous indifferent murder.

That’s pretty obvious, surely?

 

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Still Befuddled

I am still here. Haven’t died or gone away or anything. Still here. But struck dumb. Can’t think of anything to say. Everything is just so  bad and there’s so many people saying it (that’s how come I know it) that adding my voice to the chorus seems pointless.

 

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Nothing New…

Long time since I wrote anything.  Nothing new to say.

For a long time now I’ve been learning almost on a daily basis of faults, nastinesses, bad things, terrible things in our world, our civilization….

It has been a rude awakening for me because I’ve never been in the habit of looking at anything beyond myself.

I was quite shocked. Startled. Amazed. Affronted.

Leapt into print to tell the world about it….

But finally tired of it…  because I learn there’s thousands of people concerned about these things… they are really well known…

I am not needed to tell the world about these things. There’s enough folks doing that.

What is needed is someone to tell of the answers to all this.

And I can’t do that. I don’t have the answers.

So what to do? Fall silent? Disappear from the web? Fall back into the sea….

So that’s what I’ve been meditating on, trying to figure out…

I haven’t got very far.

As far as deciding that’s what’s needed is a whole new idea, a new paradigm, a new concept of how humans should live together on the world….

Something new.

 

 

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Google and British Library

How about this bit of news from Radio National’s pm page on the web ( radio national PM )  :

18:44:00 21/06/2011

Thousands of British Library texts to be digitised

The British Library has announced an historic deal with internet giant Google to digitize 250,000 works from its
collection spanning the period 1700 to 1870. They will be available for free and every word of the texts will become
searchable.

How about that? Isn’t that one of the most wonderful gifts that human race has ever received?

And how much notice does it get in the media? How much does the world care about it?

Peals before swine, mate.

Google is doing what amounts to incredible things for us. Incredible technologically. Incredible sociologically.

They are making the world.

And what does the world care about it?

Look at the list of ‘news’ items Yahoo puts on its Yahoo Mail login screen and you’ll see what is probably a fair representation of the obsessions, the concerns, the values, the current interests, of ‘the world’, our world at least.

They’re always there.  A list of five and  if you want more another five which is an earlier five, the list constantly having new items added to it.

Here’s the current top five:

1. Cop guilty of child sex crimes

2. Virgin passengers sent foul message

3. Surgeon hangs himself over botched surgery

4. When does a woman become a man?

5. Are pippa and harry an item?

There you go. That’s our world.

Presented with riches, prefer…. the dross…

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Send Some Killers

 

Australia has this big problem with their livestock exports to Indonesia.  Apparently they are often killed in an unacceptable manner.

So will someone explain to me why we don’t send, with each shipment, a team of Australian Killers? Complete with power generator vans and stun guns?

One needs an abattoir to deal with meat once the animal is killed.  And abattoirs have a finite capacity. Which is why attempting to send all the animals to the few acceptable abattoirs may not be a practical solution.

But all the animals could be farmed out to abattoirs as usual and each abattoir could receive, along with the animals, a team of Australian Killers and associated equipment.

Quietly. Politely. With some apologies. And pending discussions – amicable, adult, intelligent discussions between Australian and Indonesian officials.

Who pays for these teams could be worked out later.

Let it be done, rather than kill a whole industry and cause incredible damage within Australia.

Which is quite apart from the laughing stock we make of ourselves when we are prepared to cripple a whole industry over inhumane animal deaths but turn a blind eye and are complicit in refugee mistreatment up to and including possible deaths.

Why’s that, then?

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