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Tea and no tea

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Jun. 20th, 2003 | 09:01 pm
mood: hungryhungry
music: 808 State - Lift

Presumptive of me to "answer" a rhetorical question, but I feel compelled. My response (as with most of my responses to life) is intended as abstract rhetoric, not directly personal to you. So:

I've got great optimism in my life. Self-confidence through the roof, and a feeling of being able to do whatever I put my mind to. I'm a really happy person. I enjoy living, and have really good thoughts about my future.

At the same time, however, I'm really pessimistic about the human race as a whole. Basically, I think the human race is fucked. We won't change the path we're on until we see definite and immediate repercussions, and, by then, we'll be in such a shitty place.

How can I reconcile these two ideas?
- anonymous

You can't, so don't. And, you don't need to. I've learned that a coherent worldview is not always desirable. I'd even go so far as to say that this is true no matter what you intend (unless your main intention *is* to reach a reconciled state, as an end unto itself. But I'd argue that state to be illusory. I think you could only do it by minimizing some truths.)

We have too many necessarily different subsystems that make up how our brains/souls understand the world to worry too much about reconciliation.

Both of your ideas are correct

It is possible to be consistent without being monolithic.

For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple,
and wrong.          - H L Mencken

Triple Entendre
- All this is somewhat ironic coming from me, since I'm someone who tends to reflexively generalize from one or two examples. ;-)

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Comments {4}

positive thinking in a negative world

from: sorortzaddi
date: Jun. 20th, 2003 08:06 pm (UTC)

I have a Hermetic perspective on this apparent contradiction. I have found that extreme pressure ( in the form of experience, or even perception of experience) is required to bring about the type of change that furthers our evolution. Simplistically: if it doesn't hurt you won't change it. And boredom, curiosity, or restlessness are all in a sense pain - the pain of sameness, lack of understanding, or too much undirected energy.

As a nurse, I've seen a lot of pain, and I've seen it bring out the best and worst in people. As a shaman, I've experienced internal pressure to change my thinking - and therefore my behavior - in ways that have definitely led to self improvement. I have a lot of stressors in my life, some that I volunteered more cheerfully for than other. All of them lead to changes.

Have you ever read Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower (a spec fiction novel)? Her articulated "god" in the novel is change. We fear it, we crave it, it makes us angry, it feeds us and starves us. At some level life looks like Godz mill; the whet stone grinds us down, removing the unuseful from the useful. Many religious texts restate this idea.

I can't swear on, well, whatever, that this idea is true; but I can say that it helps me keep a positive attitude to believe that all that appears negative is actually for a benign purpose - that this is the driver of evolution.

Just a thought.

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from: anonymous
date: Jun. 20th, 2003 08:47 pm (UTC)

Hey, when you quote from a friends-only entry, would you mind making it friends-only? I've been trying, lately, not to air my grievances to the whole world, as I don't know when it will come back and bite me. Mostly, though, I don't want people I don't know reading my journal.

Either that or take my username out of the entry.


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Triple Entendre

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from: triple_entendre
date: Jun. 21st, 2003 02:01 am (UTC)

D'oh! Point taken. I've removed the username. You write so well, I felt the need to quote, and I'm all public. Best of intentions....

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