Saturday, July 28, 2012

Aurora shooting occurs at film that glorifies violence

Has anyone else noticed the irony that the audience in Aurora was gleefully assembled to drink in every frame of Hollywood's latest simulated snuff-film, a blockbuster extolling violence as a solution? Got a problem? Kill it! Someone hurt you? Hurt 'em back! Tit for tat! The shooter obviously agreed with this lofty editorial position: (a) other people have made my life wretched (b) other people are the problem (c) other people must suffer as I have suffered. A no-brainer. Literally.

Bob Dylan once wrote a song called "Who Killed Davey Moore?" about a prize fighter who died in the ring. The question is repeatedly asked, "Who killed Davey Moore? Why and what's the reason for?" Each subsequent verse is devoted to a person or persons involved in the "sport" who deny their culpability: "Not I," said the referee, the crowd, the manager, the gambling man, the boxing writer, and finally the opponent who dealt the actual death blow.

I think we should legalize snuff films--have poor people well-paid to literally be slaughtered for our amusement up there on the big screen. Wouldn't that be more honest?

People ask "Why?"

Because we've been trained to love violence that's why. The purveyors of this sick trash are insane and so are we when we support it.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Metaphysical basis for human insanity

1. Assume a state of infinite consciousness exists.

2. This state is absolutely unlimited. There are no unknowns, there are no limitations, there is no "other." There is only One.

3. The only conceivable limitation to being absolutely unlimited is the inability to experience limitation.

4. The inability to experience limitation is a limitation and makes the unlimited limited after all—a contradiction.

5. In order to be absolutely unlimited the unlimited must be able to experience limitation.

6. The only way the unlimited can have a completely realistic experience of limitation is to temporarily forget that it is unlimited.

7. The universe is the unlimited experiencing limitation in a state of amnesia.

8. The truth is infinite consciousness. Everything else is illusion.

9. Relating to an illusion as though it is the truth is insane.

10. This is why human insanity (a delusional state) is universal. We all live our lives as though we know who we are, what we are, where we are, when we are, why we are, what we’re doing, where we came from, and where we’re going. The truth is we don’t know. We are lost in space, wandering in an amnesiac fog and our ignorance—in spite of flush toilets and particle accelerators--is almost absolute.

The metaphysics is from our first book, “The Game of God: Recovering Your True Identity.” Oprah called it “A great book about God.”

We find this twenty year-old work supports our universal insanity theory very neatly.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Hurting others is an act of insanity

Do we think James Holmes is innocent by reason of insanity for the Aurora Colorado mass killing? Absolutely.

When you look at the crime itself, and think about how much preparation this man did ahead of time, it is understandable that many people would think he is sane. It appears that a lot of coldhearted, rational, logical thinking went into the planning. It’s easy to conclude that Holmes must be some kind of evil monster, even “diabolical” and “demonic” to quote Governor Hickenlooper of Colorado from Sunday's Meet the Press.

But according to the thinking of this philosophy, no one in his or her right mind could ever commit such an act. It is impossible to be sane and do such a thing. In fact, any act that hurts another person is the result of delusional thinking, from a driver cutting someone off in traffic to a trader on Wall Street purposefully deceiving her customers to Jerry Sandusky molesting children. Hurting yourself or another is an indication of insanity.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Planning Fallacy and the London Olympics

In his bestseller Thinking Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman discusses many common cognitive and decision-making errors. One that I’m certainly familiar with is called the “planning fallacy.”

Almost everyone, Kahneman says, creates forecasts that “are unrealistically close to best-case scenarios and could be improved by consulting the statistics of similar cases.” He uses as an example kitchen renovation projects. The average estimate for the job is about $18,000, and the average final cost is close to $38,000. But no one ever begins the renovation thinking their project will have those kinds of cost over-runs.

It’s not surprising that ordinary people fall prey to this common decision-making error, but you’d think people who are professional planners would know better. In the August 2012 Harper’s Index, there’s a perfect example of the planning fallacy on a large scale:
Cost of staging the 2012 London Olympics Games as estimated by the British government in 2003: $3.7 billion

Cost as currently estimated by the British government: $14.6 billion

As estimated by an independent study: $37 billion

When is the last time you heard of a large government or corporate project that didn’t involve huge cost overruns? You’d think the people involved in the planning of such projects would study similar projects, learn from the mistakes others have made, and plan accordingly. But it seems like we are all afflicted with the same prejudice: I’m different and I won’t fall prey to the same problems other people do.

What word describes the Olympics cost over-run better than “insane”? This is the confusion of subjective opinion with objective fact (our definition of insane) brought into the realm of public policy. (Not to mention the insanity of spending this kind of money on a spectacle with the austerity budget now in place in Britain.)

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Taking Responsibility

Personal responsibility. At first glance the philosophy espoused here seems to be saying no one should be held responsible for their actions. The song

Not Right in My Mind from Time Capsule Video on Vimeo.

seems to provide the excuse for every charge from the most minor bit of rudeness to premeditated murder:  “For every time I’ve scowled at you in traffic, Or honked or cursed or given the high sign, I just want to say I couldn’t help myself, The truth is I was not right in my mind.”

After listening to some of the songs from “We Are ALL Innocent by Reason of Insanity,” a person commented:
 The notion behind not being responsible for any actions, while a bit intriguing, just doesn’t jive with my beliefs; I believe only some of us are truly insane and the rest of us, who occasionally (or some, frequently) behave badly, are somewhere on the continuum of just immoral, all the way down to lazy, when we don’t behave well.
The basic premise of “we are all innocent by reason of insanity” is that everyone is delusional because we all confuse our subjective opinions with objective fact. Our subjective opinions slant our perception of reality. Everything we do and think is rationalized and justified in our minds. This is the path to compassion: we realize that people “behave badly” because they are confused in their thinking.

It’s also a path to personal responsibility. When I realize I’m crazy I realize my thinking is confused, therefore it’s easier to question the thoughts that led me to take an action that turned out badly.