The Difference Between Should Not Be and Is

It is my estimation that many people suffer and find it difficult to come to terms with, when things are not how they are supposed to be. People can tend to have a view of how things should be and when they aren’t it can be difficult to accept.

When someone dies young, perhaps a well-liked and popular father of two, it is a tragedy in some people’s eyes. {Why is it never an anti-social loner?}

It should not happen like that. But life is life. As John Lennon said, “life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.” Is it tragic to get cancer? No not really, it is a fact of life that some people get cancer. Yet if we frame it as a tragedy, with a bit of it is not fair sauce, does that make it any easier to handle? I doubt it. Feeling hard done by does not exactly enhance the quality of life.

I am due my first Covid PCR test in about four weeks’ time. If it is negative, I get to drink four litres of industrial grade laxative and then have a colonoscopy. If it is positive, I will develop covid symptoms and the colonoscopy will be put off until such time as I am no longer an infectious being.  If I die of Covid I won’t get a colonoscopy nor have to drink the laxative of doom. I am not entirely sure which is preferrable.

There is no should here. There are simply a few different event trajectories.

The likelihood of Covid is small given a lack of human encounters and my double vaccination. I have to take my Covid passport to the meeting with the anaesthetist in two weeks’ time. I don’t see what the fuss is all about, I have been showing proof of vaccination on and off for nearly fifty years. We had to prove we did not have tuberculosis to get let into Australia in 1970. I can still remember having the X-rays taken at Llwynypia Hospital where my grandfather later died. This hospital is now called Ysbyty Cwm Rhondda. They were excited that we were going to Australia. I foresee as the years go by that I will be visiting the hospital more regularly.

People can spend, and this is the correct word, a great deal of time bemoaning about how things should be and how things should not be.

It is the difference between supposition and reality which causes mental angst.

I can sit here this afternoon and say with a high degree of confidence that for the foreseeable future my life will be gardening, DIY, cooking and the occasional walkies. The only imminent caveat is what happens with the colonoscopy. I have no plans to try to change my circumstance any time soon. This is how it is.

I personally do not see why anyone else might have a problem with that.

There is a vague possibility that others may think that this should not be the case.

To re-sate the hypothesis then.

The difference between supposition, conditional preconception, and reality causes suffering. It is a root cause of suffering.

Decisions and Paths

Look at every path closely and deliberately, then ask yourself this crucial question: Does this path have a heart? If it does, then the path is good. If it doesn’t, it is of no use.

Carlos Castaneda {don Juan}

Despite all my comments on this blog about being whacko, perhaps a star-child and an Aquarian being, my self-assessment is that I am way more decisive than most people. I can make a life changing decision in an instant. Not because of being hot headed, but because I have been accumulating data, mood and feeling in my decision-making funnel over a long period of time. When the time comes, I seldom hesitate or prevaricate further.

I have surprised many with decisions which to their perception are “out of the blue”. They are not, it is just that people can be very self-obsessed and as a consequence lacking in observation. If your head is up your arse it is difficult to perceive with any accuracy the world surrounding.

Something which may appear to be good and enjoyable, can lose its heart slowly and inexorably then I can have a “fuck this for a game of soldiers” moment and off I ride into the sunset. One has to be ready to let go of the old.

I going to make a hypothesis here and maybe develop it when I find the words.

Decision is a fundamental part of any true spiritual journey because evolution as a being requires that you make decisions.

Decisions and Actions with Unforeseen Consequences

I’ll start this with a hypothesis.

As a rule of thumb many people imagine that their understanding of any given situation is way more comprehensive than it actually is. In other words, people can be unaware of their level of ignorance and do not factor this possibility of ignorance into any decision they make.

If you are a regular reader of this blog you will note from time to time, I take the piss out of the self-diagnosed omniscient, where people imagine themselves wise and all-knowing prematurely. They have no doubt in that omniscience.

I worked at place where intellectual arrogance was common, and I have met many young guns who imagined themselves ultra-smart. It most cases they were very one dimensional. Their imagined knowledge pertained to science and stopped there, pretty much. One can be good at science and absolutely pants at inter human relations, that is why “Sheldon” is such a successful franchise. It is funny how when many of these self-diagnosed geniuses are faced with an oral exam for their Ph.D. they get nervous. They may be full of braggadocio but when the time for testing comes, they metaphorically shit their pants.

As an aside this braggadocio is one of the things that I like least about how things are in the UK. Things it seems, must be bigged up, hyped and inflated with hot air. One must show off.

I was completely and utterly relaxed for my Ph.D. viva. Why? Because of the six Ps.

Preparation and Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance. You will note than planning here is present participle, ongoing, it is never finished. I had prepared way ahead and nothing was last minute dot com.

In de Bono’s hats I am the one who thinks about thinking.

I have made way more plans that I have executed because I have come across something that is a showstopper. I feel no remorse in ditching a plan because I enjoy planning.

It is a human behaviour to discount good advice especially if one badly wants to do something. If someone says, “have you thought about this consequence?” It is so often ignored. People are hell-bent on something and will use confirmation bias coupled with justification to do whatever it is they want to do. They will be blind to any reason.

I can think of many occasions in which I warned people about the consequences of their actions and decisions and have been completely ignored. Some have gotten angry with me and metaphorically shot the messenger. I am being negative and a downer, apparently! Oh dear! Denial and not wanting to hear can often be found. Self-importance does not like to be questioned.

Perhaps my best tutorial on human nature came when I was in a student pastoral care role. I learned many things. I think for me it was a great chance to express detached compassion. I am a very good listener when I choose to be.  Some students tried to bend the rules by feigning illness for which they needed a medical certificate. Few of them imagined that I was on first name terms with the medics at the health centre and under confidentiality able to discuss. I developed a system whereby for those prone to pre-exam illness I would arrange a meeting a couple of weeks before exams to inquire as to their wellbeing. Such a simple thing reduced the exam-sickness epidemic without need for vaccination.

I’ll wager that anybody who met me on the physical plane prior to our move to France would not have foreseen the scope and content of this blog as being somehow in me, under the surface. There would have been an ignorance about what I am and how I think which they would have been completely unaware of. Anyone interacting with me might imagine a comprehensive understanding of the situation which is largely unfounded.

To my eyes many people have thought they know me and had me “sussed”.

It is a strange old world so full of omniscient beings.

Recapitulating Through My Journals – Temptation

I have just gotten to where I “trashed” my 130,000-euro job and the dream that instigated that process.  One journal was almost entirely full of the meditation thought form building.  The next is full of dreams pertaining to the petty dramas of day-to-day life and hardly any meditation notes.

It is just possible somebody from the space agency contacted my old employers and “had a word about me”. It is a small world.

In the meditation journal it suggested that I am somehow on the line of Avalokiteśvara, there is some flavour of this in me.

In my journal I make the hypothesis that this job with its large salary, kudos and fancy lasers to play with was by way of a temptation for me to turn away from the spiritual and back toward the material. Given that we were in the act of downsizing house to save rent money, it was pretty well timed and well designed. The not accepting the job had a number of knock-on effects in the material world.

Way back somebody told me that my predilection was Dreaming Man of Action. But I started getting loads of 18s and the wife dreamed of me being severed and I did have one very unpleasant energetic experience. Whilst I was recovering from this, moving house in the snow, the shit started to hit the fan on the material plane.

So given that and the tricorn hat dream I started a new hypothesis that I am indeed a three-pronged philosophical nagal who is also a dreamer. I am pretty out there from time to time.

It is not entirely beyond the realms of possibility. I had been trying to live life in a way that someone else suggested.

These themes of temptation run continuously for much of my adult life and by and large I have resisted temptation fairly well, not always I might add, but usually the big ones.

Only eight A4 journals to go and I’ll be up to date.

Interestingly in 2008 I had a vision of living near a river and of the Breton countryside. Oh yeah and a blue, red and black Triskelion, which kind of links across to the three-pronged nagal hypothesis.

Towards Whom Have You Been a Complete and Utter Dick?

In our ignorance we imagine a degree of omniscience which is largely unwarranted. This is especially so if we are one of THE gang, the boys club, the jack the lads, who slap each other’s backs in the full and extensive knowledge that they, we, know it all. We are the best.

I have a very weak and loose hypothesis based on visions and dreaming, that it is possible that I am an incarnation of one of Buddha’s closest disciples namely the scholar Bakula.

In Tibetan terms that would make me some kind of a tulku. It would be I who pass the white scarf of blessing over to you.

But if you have and continue to “diss” me and belittle me as a loony, what would be the implications for you?

It is one of those “place your bets” situations.

I am JUSTIFIED in being a complete and utter dick towards this being. He is wrong and we are the righteous.

There is no such thing as karma, I am right, I know best. My wonderful career is tantamount!!

There is no karmic implication for our nation in treating this being so poorly.

Or is there?

It is funny how people in ignorance despite imagined knowledge, fail to appreciate that other people have different values.

Oh well, perhaps over thinking, pass the Merlot…

The Phenomenon of Instant Experts

I’ll kick this off with a hypothesis.

Many people imagine that their depth of knowledge is more profound than it is.

What do think? Is this a sound hypothesis?

It seems to me that the phenomenon of instant experts is becoming ever more prevalent and this medium, the internet, has facilitated the pandemic of assumed expertise. Moreover, few check the provenance of their so-called knowledge. If THEY say it then it must be true. However, THEY say a whole bunch of things. We have a global game of Chinese whispers, which gives rise to some strange ideas.

I have been very fortunate in that many people over the years have felt that I needed the benefit of their wisdom. They never checked what I might know, being eager perhaps to soapbox or evangelise. By and large I have not argued the toss nor made an attempt to make them look foolish. I can usually tell if people are disinterested in listening quite quickly and because I am introverted, keeping quiet comes naturally.

Maybe the above hypothesis fits me?

Perhaps I am an arrogant being?

Having been a science academic it is easy to spot those who relied on rote learning or parrot wisdom, when they first tip up. Many want to know the answers and are not at all interested in understanding, they simply want a good degree. They want to know how to pass exams. So, there is a bit of a challenge, how to sneak some learning in under the exam orientation and grade fascination.

When I asked someone who new me in my previous metaphorical incarnation how good his Maths was, he was hesitant to respond because he knew the types of minds I was accustomed to working with. Other people may not suspect what I might have under the hood so to speak.

People place a lot of stock in being clever, brainy and top of the class. Parrot wisdom, “general knowledge” is not very deep.  THEY are not the font of all knowledge. Wanting to be seen as clever is a strange thing.

Is clever the same as wise?

Are “facts” the same as knowledge?

What is the difference between knowledge and wisdom?

Do you agree that we have a pandemic of assumed expertise?

Almost Inconceivable

Partially because of a dream and partially because of an interaction I am going to delve into this a little today.

I’ll start with something of a hypothesis.

“If someone changes radically in their orientation towards life it is very difficult for others to accept or believe in that degree of change.”

I base this on my own personal experience, people tend to see one through the old lens which they have constructed for you and through the lens of their group-mind imagining that one shares a considerable fraction of that group mind. Perhaps they find it difficult to conceive that one does not share similar motives and motivations.

To give a simple example, back when I first started doing deep voice chanting, my family rather than inquiring as to what was going on preferred to write it off as me simply being weird. They sought to treat me as the piss-artist rugby player of old rather than countenance that I was changing radically.

If my former career, gaining large amounts of research grant funding, publishing articles is high impact factor journals, getting invites to conferences, getting a tenured chair at a prestigious university and maybe finally becoming a fellow of the royal society, were all symbols of success and kudos. It is almost inconceivable that someone from such a go-getter background as this would resign a job willingly and go into what was tantamount to unemployment. It is a DNC, a does not compute.

The whole basis of promotion in such a system is based around some “agreed” goals, targets and milestones. People therein are goal oriented. It is almost inconceivable for a goal-oriented person that anyone might not be goal oriented in any way whatsoever.

For people who are materialistic a decent salary is a target, a measure of success. And in the UK the housing ladder is an obsession. To only want enough to get by, is an anathema.

Way back I genuinely was involved in some very high technology stuff, fancy femtosecond lasers, semiconductor clean rooms and ultra-high vacuum, I even did some ab inito quantum chemical calculations. It is hard, almost inconceivable, that someone with near a decade left on the clock, so to speak, would swap that life for gardening, DIY and cooking in a very rural location. It would be difficult for people to get their head around. There might be some weird idea that I would return from gardening leave to the fold like some prodigal. It is possible that people might imagine that I am running in submarine mode.

Someone suggested that I might like to be on an advisory board, I said that this wasn’t necessary they could ask me anything they want or send me stuff to comment on for free. I said that I do not like contracts and would much rather do things informally. In one world people are expected to pay for things and  recompense is seen as a motivator. But if I say I will do it for free, I mean exactly that. It is almost inconceivable in our grasping world. I expect nothing in return.

If people are attached say to money, family, house, car and job, the notion on non-attachment is beyond comprehension. There are degrees of non-attachment or rather weaking levels of attachment. To be completely non-attached is beyond mind, for the vast majority of people. I phrased this deliberately in this manner. The tendency would be to think, “he says he is not attached but what he really means is he is not strongly attached”. The mind cannot or will not accept the concept of non-attachment as a conceivable reality, so it fudges it.

If you like attention, respect, power and kudos it is difficult to adopt the mindset of a quasi-hermit. People cannot live like that, surely.  Especially if previously, they had some respect, a little power and a degree of kudos. Luckily here nobody knows anything much of my background we are just les anglais.

The simple fact that I do not have a personal mobile ‘phone, in this day and age, is hard to believe on one level and more than a little eccentric on another. You should see the reaction of the, often young, salespeople when they are trying to sell you a ‘phone when one informs them of how few calls and how little data one uses. There is no plan available which goes low enough to match. The mobile ‘phone companies cannot conceive of such low usage.

I have changed my orientation towards life radically…I know this but only I am fully aware of the extent of that change.

I’ll wager for a whole bunch of people it is a DNC.

Here is an interesting question:

What for you is almost inconceivable?

A Little Thought Experiment

I have a minor hypothesis that various people once known to me are in some way monitoring this blog. I could be one complete loony-tune. Or I could be spot on, or somewhere in between.

Question:

Why would any bunch of highfalutin dudes monitor the blog of a private individual who is retired and living in another country, one who has had cancer and a broken hip?

Response:

It is unlikely but not beyond the realms of possibility given their control freak nature.

Question:

If “they” were monitoring would they read ALL the material?

Response:

No but some underling would / might, and they would report back.

Question:

Could one use this imagined phenomenon as a teaching vehicle?

Response:

Yes, one could get them to read vast tracts of uplifting text. They might even ponder upon some of it, that is unless they are just scan reading looking for something juicy and controversial, something to gossip about as per usual.

Question:

WTF would they make of it?

Response:

I have absolutely no idea.

Question:

Can they stop you doing this?

Response:

Maybe, but after Brexit things are different.

Question:

Is spying on a single individual as a collective a form of bullying?

Response:

Yes.

Question:

Do you think that they would be able to justify this travesty to themselves in their minds?

Response:

They will feel that they are TOTALLY entitled so to do and thoroughly justified in monitoring a heretic, an apostate of the church of reason.

Question:

Is that karmically bad for them?

Response:

It depends, if you believe in karma and the notion of non-returners.

Question:

Would they heed any warning you might offer?

Response:

No, “they” know best and have self-diagnosed their own utter omniscience.

Scientist Quotes

A physicist is just an atom’s way of looking at itself.

Niels Bohr

 

No, no, you’re not thinking; you’re just being logical.

Niels Bohr

 

Your theory is crazy, but it’s not crazy enough to be true.

Niels Bohr

 

When it comes to atoms, language can be used only as in poetry. The poet, too, is not nearly so concerned with describing facts as with creating images.

Niels Bohr

 

Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real.

Niels Bohr

 

And thought struggles against the results, trying to avoid those unpleasant results while keeping on with that way of thinking. That is what I call ‘sustained incoherence.

David Bohm

 

The ability to perceive or think differently is more important than the knowledge gained.

David Bohm

 

What we observe is not nature itself, but nature exposed to our method of questioning.

Werner Heisenberg

 

Every word or concept, clear as it may seem to be, has only a limited range of applicability.

Werner Heisenberg

 

Think of colour, pitch, loudness, heaviness, and hotness. Each is the topic of a branch of physics.

Benoit Mandelbrot

 

There’s no sense in being precise when you don’t even know what you’re talking about.

John von Neumann

 

I can calculate the motion of heavenly bodies, but not the madness of people.

Isaac Newton

 

We build too many walls and not enough bridges.

Isaac Newton

 

Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy.

Isaac Newton

 

To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction.

Isaac Newton

 

Nothing is too wonderful to be true if it be consistent with the laws of nature.

Michael Faraday

 

Scientific views end in awe and mystery, lost at the edge in uncertainty, but they appear to be so deep and so impressive that the theory that it is all arranged as a stage for God to watch man’s struggle for good and evil seems inadequate.

Richard P. Feynman

 

It is in the admission of ignorance and the admission of uncertainty that there is a hope for the continuous motion of human beings in some direction that doesn’t get confined, permanently blocked, as it has so many times before in various periods in the history of man.

Richard P. Feynman

 

God used beautiful mathematics in creating the world.

Paul Dirac

 

I am become death, the destroyer of worlds.

J. Robert Oppenheimer

 

Access to the Vedas is the greatest privilege this century may claim over all previous centuries.

J. Robert Oppenheimer

 

Of all created comforts, God is the lender; you are the borrower, not the owner.

Ernest Rutherford

 

It is a good morning exercise for a research scientist to discard a pet hypothesis every day before breakfast. It keeps him young.

Konrad Lorenz

 

Truth in science can be defined as the working hypothesis best suited to open the way to the next better one.

Konrad Lorenz