Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Our Inheritance

This morning I made a Facebook post.

It is as follows:

Looking for feedback of my early morning conclusion:
Two male children.
The firstborn inherits the dominant behavioral characteristics from the father. The second born inherits the dominant behavioral characteristics from the grandfather on the mother's side.

Personal observations reflecting over 50 years would lead me to the conclusion that this is the general rule of genetics.

Soon afterwards I ever received this response:

Genetics are predominant and account for about 85% of our physical and psychological characteristics. People are reluctant to accept this and are always trying to manufacture or buy advantages for their kids. Bad news (such as the 50% chance of becoming an alcoholic, if either of your parents were) is just ignored rather than faced up to! 

With a high school education and only my personal life experiences to reflect upon, I often reach out for an opinion.  It can quite often lead to an aha moment! Are We There Yet?  No!  There is no destination that we refer to as “there”. What we experience is the here and now, the being in the moment, the steps along the journey.

Previously, I have discussed our human condition, that is, the development of our mind.  Modern psychology and biology has determined that it is complete, approximately at age 30.  Of course, we all know that you can learn something beyond the age of 30.  It would be silly to make an assumption otherwise.  With this in mind, I would like to present the following analogy.

Let’s take a quiet afternoon drive through the mountains on a beautiful sunny day.  Picture the surrounding landscape.  Picture one of these mountain slopes and equate it to your life.  That slope of the mountain represents gradual erosion.  In this quiet secluded valley, the slope that represents you, and the slopes of the mountains around you have many similarities.  Everything is beautiful.  Everything is in harmony.

Now I present to you a curveball, on the mountain slope that is “you”, or may be, perhaps the slope that represents someone in your social network.

It It was collectively decided that for the future advancement and benefit of our valley, we will log these mountain slopes.  Prosperity and growth will follow.  We will have jobs and economic development.  It doesn’t matter which slope we log on.  Perhaps this began on a slope near you, maybe on your own slope, over a century ago.

Within the first two decades of this initiative.  Economic activity is robust, and everybody is on a winning team.  The common thought of the community is that “divine providence” has smiled upon us.  Everyone agrees, life is perfect.

Move forward two centuries.  We see the results of the practice of clear-cutting over decades past.  Our community is at risk, the mountain slope is unstable.  Seasonal runoff saturates the ground, and a landslide could happen.

During those first two decades of logging, clear-cutting became the practice.  Everyone agrees.  Just as with the development of your early preteen years, logic and reason predetermined by the Democratic majority of the community establishes educational practices.  All children must recite the Lord’s prayer at the beginning of each school day.  We strongly encourage all families to join a local faith community and follow what has become “standard practice” of their group.

This example of “standard practice” is the process of indoctrination of young minds, pre-adolescence.  They have firmly established geographical community conformity.  There are no exceptions.

Two centuries later, after the practice of clear-cutting, it is self-evident regardless of the attempts at tree-planting, reforestation to the original slope can never be established.

Throughout the history of our human existence, it has become apparent that many of the attributes of society are inherited.  They are rituals and cultural practices  handed down.  There is one other interesting aspect to this hereditary situation.  That is this.  We pass the stress and hardship of individuals on through genetics; it mutates the offspring to establish future survival.  We have documented this with respect to indigenous people, and indigenous schools, the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the residential school survivors carry the genetic scars of life which they themselves never experienced.

Another interesting aspect of our species, and our lives, is that once at problem is identified within our behavioral context, it takes approximately five generations for the genetic mutation to be eliminated.  This then requires that for the next five generations.  We must acknowledge the past on knowledge and a conscious effort made to take corrective action. When we consider the social cohesion of our surrounding communities, it is highly unlikely that any family would continue for five generations to achieve a goal. Therefore, when I received a response that 85% of an individual is inherited, I arrive at another conclusion.  Family lineage is incapable of accomplishing a greater good for their future.  It is therefore only community-based initiatives with long-term goals that could achieve such an end.  This brings the forefront another dilemma.  Community initiatives are driven by democratic process.  To a high huge degree, the democratic process is driven by the populism of the moment.  Populism is self-serving to those in power and authority.

To understand the preceding cascading circumstance, it is highly unlikely that goals can be achieved for the greater good of our species.  Everything that is politically driven, has selfish goals, greed, and economic prosperity as the only endgame in town. Our species is inherently crippled both intellectually and genetically to achieve long-term goals.

Perhaps there is a positive outcome.  We are perhaps into our second decade of artificial intelligence, determining individual credit score.  Big Brother is deciding.  Whether you qualify for a loan.  For the first time in human history, your community, social status is not the contributing factor regarding qualifying for a loan. If we can extrapolate this into our future and use artificial intelligence to establish common goals and boundaries regarding communities’ greater good, we can set in place long-term goals.  For the first time our species will be free of theological determination, and “divine providence” guiding our future.  The establishment of broad databases of social, economic, biological, just to mention a few, criteria can provide the future boundaries.

Big brother needs to take the wheel.  The United Nations’ declaration of human rights, being a starting point for artificial intelligence decisions.  I would conceive that only be on geopolitical boundaries, for the greater good of all members of our species, can we manage our ecological conditions and circumstance.

Our own individual circumstance, our inherited characteristics from parents, and grandparents, even if recognized, have little effect on the navigation that is required.  The short temper and intellectual ability of a family member being inherited cannot be corrected.  Just as the clear-cutting of the mountain slope cannot be corrected two centuries later.  We have many mountain slopes as analogies within our Western world.  This past four years has been self-evident that genetic behaviors to have elected a president that is so disruptive, we must find a better way.  Further to this, it becomes more self-evident that since World War II, our community educational systems have failed us.  That such a presidency has occurred, is a failure on the education of the general population.

And thus, in December 2020, the prospect of new initiatives for 2021, new directions and goals have possibilities.

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Systemic Extortion

 This was my morning post on social media.

Overthinking again! I think therefore I am. Therefore I will depart. Or should I say retreat? Where?

Perhaps into the deep and dark secluded corners of the mind.

Conclusion: our individual perception of "the present moment" is the concatenation of life experiences. There are no two snowflakes alike. There are no two "realities" alike. As individuals reality is established through the lenses of life experience through which we view the natural world.

So off I go to my quiet secluded space, with my voice recognition software, Grammarly and the Hemmingway Editor, fighting procrastination all the way. Wish me luck! I will be back…


Systemic Extortion

Now isn't this an odd title for an article? Yes of course it is, because only with the harsh reality can we be enticed or forced to arrive at new conclusions. Through personal observation, I would suggest that important critical changes are only achieved after experiencing a variety of natural human emotions.

So you've been to the pet store, and you are now home with a new member of the family. What a cute puppy. Now begins the many many months of "puppy training". Treats in your pocket, and perhaps a rolled-up newspaper. Good behavior is rewarded with praise and a treat. Deterred behavior with a swat from the rolled-up newspaper. This continues day after day, many times throughout the day until automatic responses are generated in the puppy, and we now consider our "best friend" housetrained.

The same is true of our social communities, as young individuals we are groomed into the community. Praise and stroking of individual egos, and criticism for noncompliance. No two communities are alike. No two individuals within the community are alike. Each individual grows and develops as an adult according to their early life experiences.

The title "Systemic Extortion", because the "puppy training" of each of us as individuals in our early years is a process of "reward and punishment". Praise and ego-stroking, and harsh criticism or rejection. In extreme cases, individuals are ostracized. The cornerstone of Western civilization is perpetual "Extortion". We don't call it extortion, because when the shaping and grooming of social behaviors are done by individuals that have conceded, their right to do so, from "Divine Providence ". "Systemic Extortion", has become standard social practice, the fabric of "faith-based" social networks.

We live in a world of engineered reality, that has evolved over many centuries. The leaders, the facilitators, the perpetrators are elevated to layers of social standing everywhere around us. If we examine human behavior, for the term "narcissism", we may reflect a new and deeper understanding. With the underlying purpose of "Divine Providence", in the hands of leaders, facilitators, and perpetrators the label "narcissist" is conveniently dropped. Conveniently dropped because in the broader context a greater good for the social structure is perceived. This begs the question, why drop the term narcissist? Do not each of these individuals mentioned retain social status, power and authority? Therefore their community and social group standing is solely dependent on narcissistic traits to be perfected to maintain the social hierarchy. In all instances along the way, "a power greater than myself" as self-determination defuses any criticism.

How is it that we continue to perpetuate these chains of events? It begins possibly during times before the example I will give. The early Greeks and Romans established the social process of removing the young boys from the home environment and placing them in compounds with other young males. From the earliest age, young boys found role models in their every day new environment and were gradually shaped. These times were before the establishment of what we observe today to be modern-day Christianity.

Psychology today understands the development of the human mind in much greater detail than our ancestors. The overall conclusion is this, the biological and physical maturity of our human brain is completed approximately at age 30. Keep in mind the previous two paragraphs as we move forward.

In the early months of human development, young child is observing their surroundings. Language and communication have not developed yet, but observations are establishing conclusions in the young mind. Keep in mind that there are a variety of environments, each one uniquely different. The widest gamut possible is the possible reality for each of these new members of our species. It can be a well-meaning and dedicated evangelical Christian household. It can be at the other end of the spectrum and narcissistic and abusive, substance-dependent environment. Without communication, the young mind can only come to conclusions and make decisions resulting from observations. The "reward and punishment" is understood and conclusions arrived at. Both of these extreme examples of the family atmosphere and all deviations exist in our communities.

In those early preteen years, communication is established with the outside world through acquired language. Clich├ęs and phrases, shape the cultural lensing of the young mind. Dependent on geographical and cultural immersion, the young mind becomes a modified copy of both ancestors and community.

Now arrives adolescence. Language and cultural practices have been adopted, and now is the time to give responsibility to the developing mind. Stroking of the ego, reward and punishment go hand-in-hand with establishing the desired endpoint. Perhaps in the evangelical home, the young person takes on responsibilities to assist in their Sunday school program. At the other end of the social spectrum, substance abuse might result in the young individual beginning the use of these substances themselves. Why? Because in each case the young mind perceives a value in conformity. The young mind desires to mimic what is perceived to be advantageous traits. Throughout the teenage years, behavioural confirmation by the group begins to set firmly in place the personal conclusions. By the time the teenager passes through adolescence and reaches the age of 30, constructs in the mind can become firmly entrenched. No further knowledge or understanding is required, I have learned all I need to know, I am now an adult, I'm all grown up.

Here I will throw a curveball into the mix. As I had mentioned in a previous rambling, I attended a Congregational meeting in Saskatoon, perhaps 10 years ago now. It was suggested by a childhood friend that I attend, however, he had other commitments and would not be joining me. Innocent enough, I did. The meeting began with a recorded presentation of a debate between a believer and a nonbeliever. The presentation chosen was such that I can assume most people watching concluded the believer won the debate. After a brief interlude, perhaps 10 or 12 individuals from the congregation seated themselves on the stage. The lead facilitator of this gathering stood up and made a statement. "We are here to try and understand why more than 90 percent of our young people leave their faith after two years of higher education."

The reason I have related to this personal experience is that from the time the young mind leaves high school and enters institutions of higher learning, change is still possible. I recall out of context, from my preteen years, attending the rural Lutheran church service. "Maintain the innocence of a child." I do not recall the context or any other details, or even when in my early life this memory remains. I bring it forward at this time as an example that even upon completion of high school, "maintain the innocence of a child", has not solidified the possibility of a broader understanding by our human mind. In some individuals, even after the age of 30, conclusions are arrived at and major life decisions are made.

In conclusion, there are many facets of our human social interactions. We are all shaped by our life experiences. Those that claim to be the most caring, and for the greater good, clearly by example are the ones that practice "extortion" to the highest degree in the disguise of "divine providence". Collectively as members of the species, we must open our eyes to these practices and behaviours, and gradually through whatever processes necessary, stamp them out as detrimental to our collective advancement. During an earlier time, Hans Christian Anderson wrote "The Emperor's New Clothes", a poke in the eye of the social conformity during his time, of the obvious. Peter Boghossian, assistant professor of philosophy at Portland State University, defines faith as "pretending to know things you don't know."

Friday, December 25, 2020

2020 Christmas morning

Do you remember Alice in Wonderland?
Of course you do!

Come with me, and let us go for an adventure.
A stapler? Why?

Perhaps for at least the last few decades, this recognized tool, has played an instrumental part in our everyday world. It comes in varied shapes and sizes, for stapling together paper, stapling vapour barrier during construction, stapling bags closed, and many more. Let's not forget stapling wires or cables along the baseboard by the telephone or alarm system installer. Why such detail? Because this should all come together with the realization that regardless of the tool, the concept is the same. Take the shape designed for the tool, and get the job done. staples for cables, staples for attaching vapour barrier during construction.

Now let's extrapolate this, and perhaps go down a rabbit hole. Please consider that staples, regardless of the size or shape, represent the collective knowledge and understanding during the current era. That being established, let us understand that the stapler is the tool to establish greater common understanding.

Regarding cables and wires, and staples, we have now arrived at a time when many of the devices are wireless. Everything can be connected to everything else. Perhaps in this regard staples have become obsolete. If staples have become obsolete with the transfer of data, then what is the point of having a stapler? Yes for some jobs, we will always need one.

Vapor barrier, construction? Many building materials do not require this previous method, they themselves are a vapor barrier. Many methods of attaching building materials today use adhesives. Again the staple gun is obsolete, and only used in special applications.

A stapler is the method of delivery, of the staple. The staple is the common knowledge of the time. In an information and technological age that we exist in, communication is global and wireless. It knows no boundaries. At least very few boundaries. If we would consider that the stapler, as analogy analogy, to be the "College of Theology". Most if not all university campuses have one.

The very general purpose of the College of Theology, was to establish general consensus and cohesion in community or nation. Apply the common knowledge of the day in such a way that the general population understood the greater good. In this way the stapler, the College of Theology, established conformity. The fabric of community, the rule of law, for social and economic harmony.

Today, "common knowledge" is available to everyone regardless of social or economic strata. Available through many devices, in many languages, across cultures. A global network of data. As this decade moves forward past the year 2020, perhaps the most obvious observation, is that the "stapler" is relegated to the dustbin of history. A delivery method from an earlier time. Just as the textbook used in earlier medicine, perhaps from 500 years ago, is now a museum piece. We certainly do not accept as standard practice, curing ailments by a practice of "bleeding". We have advanced past the time when sickness and disease was accepted to be something in the air around us, a part of "the ether". We simply did not know any better!

Colleges of theology, over centuries, have evolved strategic methods to establish social conformity. The general population in our recent past accepted without question the opinions of the graduates. The power of the microbial world has been demonstrated to us globally in this year 2020. These graduates of theology, "stand down and stand by". Everyone recognizes this year the insignificance and assertions of certainty which cannot be measured or defined.

Two major disasters in our modern recorded history shaped our modern world. These two disasters were the earthquakes in Spain which caused the general population to question and reevaluate "The Divine". In recent history, the events of 9/11 precipitated the past two decades of divine purpose for a greater good. "The War on Terror". A concept for retribution, firmly based on the foundation of evangelical Christianity, the heydays of "Billy Graham" popularity. Reflecting back from 2020, we can clearly see that this firmly established "Christian arrogance" is simply attempting to apply obsolete staples through an obsolete staple gun. Perhaps more clearly, and attempt to apply concepts from early colonialism to our current era. Science and genetics, the knowledge of the microbial world, space exploration and astronomy have rendered the foundations of "the College of Theology" an elephant in the room which has not yet begun the process of fossilization.

This concludes my 2020 Christmas morning of "overthinking everything". Thank you for reading!


Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Through the centuries, we know more.

As you slowly scroll this website, the text will appear on alternate sides of the screen, giving you a slow and gradual explanation of the image in the center.

"Big-bang", no...
With time and the advancement in technology we, as a species, arrive at a new understanding of the natural world - including far distant space. Far distant space, that our ancestors had no concept of.

As I read more, over the years, there are a continuous number of "big-bang" events. These are natural phenomena beyond our earth's atmosphere. We come to observe this natural cycle of energy and matter, in a never ending cycle. It appears to be regional in parts of distant space. events occur that lead to the demise of stars and planets. There are events that lead to the creation of new planets and stars. These events happen over BILLIONS of years, a time scale that our human existence commonly is in DENIAL OF. As a "species" we are "self-centred", certain that our personal "life" is of some great importance, What we observe in these recent decades, is that this is not the case. 
One example to illustrate the "time-scale" is this.  Hold your arms out on each side of your body. At the far tips of your hands on either side, your fingernails extend. Now imagine taking a nail file and stroking the tip of the farthest nail. 
The fully extended arms represent the age of our planet.
The single stroke of the nail file at the extended finger tip represents "human existence" on this planet.
Will a single stroke of the nail file, you have removed our entire human existence on the face of this planet.

What we observe far off in distant space are events that happen during multiple time frames that would be measured by the distance to the fingertips of your extended arms. Let's call this "extended arm" time frame a "celestial year". We as a species are insignificant.
Our hereditary concept of afterlife appears to have no place in this time frame. We exist, and someday we will no longer exist. We are  but bugs in a slow moving storm of transitions of energy and matter. 

“Black holes are enormous sources of energy in the universe, and that is because material falls into the black hole. As it does so, it goes faster, and if it collides, those collisions can take kinetic energy and turn it into radiation. In terms of the lifecycle of a galaxy, the black hole at the center plays a major part in how the galaxy evolves.”

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Perfection and Procrastination


And so, "perfection" has finally brought me to a point where I am sitting this morning. First coffee done, fist done, and set up my laptop to begin. Am I too late? Too late for what? Good morning, people! And so it is you stumbled across this page. We all expected to see better, 20:20 in 2020. It doesn't appear that turned out as planned. Where do we go from here? The more I observe, the more I understand. The more I come to know my conclusion is I do not know. I guess we'll just all make it up as we go along. One day at a time! As you can see by the creation date of this post. It is October 21, 2020. We are well into a new season, this morning's temperature is only +8°C. Today begins my second morning with my kerosene heater. The season has changed and by the end of this week. The temperatures will be near freezing. With the seasonal change. I've cleaned out items that I have seldom used, and put them in my storage locker. And so begins my sixth year of "Van-life". Learning and growing and refining what is around me. "Perfectionism", aha there it is! The creation of this page, and the registration of the corresponding domain name. Aha, there is the "procrastination". Overthinking and rethinking and rethinking again because I might have missed something. Not bothering to put thoughts in place, why? Because tomorrow or the day after, those thoughts will be out of date, anyway. Sounds like a good excuse! "Are we there yet?" Am I too late?

Do we have a problem here?

 Sitting at the laptop at 5 AM! Captain, do we have a problem here?  (... Sometimes you need to just get up, and get back at it! Perhaps a l...