Tag Archive: Russell_Wisdom of the West

Indubitable proof of my existence

Friday, January 12, 2018. 🌌
But here is the peculiarity– Though I myself may have indubitable proof of my own existence as a mind and as a thinker, I cannot provide the same indubitable proof to someone else! For, from the outside, I may appear to be no more than mere “automata” — an animal devoid of soul and of mind.
And the only way to break the illusion of my being an animal or some mere automata, I must speak!
But, what if I cannot speak? What if I am not permitted to speak? What if I have no voice? What if I lack the precise words to express my mind and my thoughts? Or, what if I do speak but cannot be heard or understood? Do these things prove to them that I lack a mind and a soul?


The artificial man

Wednesday, January 10, 2018.
Presumably, the “reason” that he speaks of is a finished/polished “product,” and not merely the undeveloped raw ability. (This is the only way that I can make sense of what Descartes thinks here.) But if so, then “reason” isn’t something objective like something mathematical. Rather, it means something quite closer to a concept like “socialization” — which is something idiosyncratic (ie, not universal) and something quite artificial and not natural. In other words, one’s so-called “reason” — as well as one’s reasoning-processes — are basically socio-culturally determined things.

To exist

Wednesday, January 3, 2018. 🌩️
I am invisible to them — and being seen is a big deal too. It works in tandem with the seeing, since being seen makes me “real,” just as a world that is seen is also made “real” simply in virtue of being seen. And when I am seen, not only am I not alone as when I am in the company of others who can see the world that I myself can see, I myself exist and am real in the same way that the way that gods and God also exist and are real by being seen. I am not saying that I am “the God.” But I am Kendi, and I want to be seen and to exist and to be real…
To see is only a part of being complete and happy. Being seen is the other half.
It is very much like loving and being loved in return.

My gong-fu

Wednesday, December 20, 2017. 💎
Finally, when “功” is paired with “夫,” the word would literally mean to have respect for, or to be attendant to, the “excellence in a skill” — whatever this may be. Thus, it seems to me that the word “功夫” embodies the spirit of pursuing excellence. It implies great dedication and effort. It also implies a sincere and profound respect for the object of one’s pursuit.
So this is what “功夫,” gong-fu, is to me. And I think that this is the work that I am engaged in when I do philosophy, and when I say that I am “studying.” My gong-fu is philosophy; it is my work, my craft, and I am in pursuit of excellence in it.

A Ghost in the Shell

Monday, December 18, 2017.
I think that it is the human body, and not the brain, that is the “strongest” attribute of being human — not the brain. And in fact, the human brain is not much more than a product of the body; the body comes first, then the brain. The brain is just simply a tool for governing and organizing a complex body, as a whole; it’s existence is not more than the necessary product of the existence of the kind of complex body that we happen to have.

Beyond metaphysics

Friday, December 15, 2017 🥇 🏆
It is also distinctly anti-Platonic. According to Plato, the truth can only be known by seeing the world outside of the Mind-cave. Even if one somehow begins inside of the Mind-cave, the goal isn’t to simply remain there. At least, this is what I take to be Plato’s intended message when he makes the analogy of the cave in Republic.
But, Aristotelians like Augustine seem to be content with remaining inside of the Mind-cave. And so, despite the so-called European “enlightenment,” the so-called philosophers like Descartes and Kant did not lead their flock outside of the Mind-cave as all good philosophers were supposed to have been doing (according to Plato’s plan, anyways). And it wasn’t until Nietzsche came along that those who were able and willing to follow him were finally able to be free of Aristotelian metaphysics. (That said, Nietzsche is a gnarly and twisted character, and he speaks in metaphors and he is a master-trickster whose skill over the illusory power of mirrors has caused some of his more naive followers to lose their way; Hitler is one such example of a naive follower. One would do well to remember that Nietzsche’s anti-Semitic or misogynistic comments are mirrors revealing the truth of one’s own painful and “ugly” scars, as a German Christian and as a male. But the übermensch eventually plows himself, his scars, and his pain under — and when he ceases to be “anti” anything, then he finally becomes free to just be his own beautiful self.)

A reminder

Wednesday, December 13, 2017. ✍️
I think that the most important thing about this space, is that it reminds me of my Uncle’s love for me. It is a real and concrete reminder of his love. In this space, I was able to spend doing what I love doing the most in this life — studying philosophy. And that is love; to let me have the freedom to find and be my truest and best self.

For the sake of happiness

Monday, December 11, 2017.
Why are the philosophers always punished so? Goodness — knowing things like this, nobody in their right mind would ever wish to become a philosopher, if they also wished to be and do well in life. It could only be for the sake of happiness that one would ever be driven towards such a fate. Or, perhaps, one must be possessed by some daemon (δαίμων)…

What is “God”?

Sunday, December 10, 2017.
But, now, the problem with a statement like this (ie, that “faith is required before rational knowledge may be pursued”) is that the meaning of the statement changes depending on what “rationality” amounts to. Some philosophers think that rationality is about pursuing self-interest. Other philosophers think that it has to do with being able to do mathematical calculations. And still others think that rationality is to be able to have speech. I myself am one of the philosophers who think that being “rational” really just means being “the same” as those now in political power.
And the meaning of the statement also changes depending on what we take to be the object of faith in this context. Presumably, the object of faith is “God.” But what is “God”? That’s the tricky bit. Some philosophers and theologians (eg, Stagyrites) think that it’s the “Mind.” More mystical people (or literal people) think that “God” is Zeus. Some other philosophers (like Spinoza and other pantheists) might think that “God” is simply the whole universe. Perhaps some mystics or numerologists (eg, some Jewish sects) might think that “God” is some number or a numerical formula. A philosopher like myself (and Plato) might think that “God” is simply another word for the “self,” in its most abstract, non-linguistic, and purely existential sense.

When we can each be free to pursue our truth

Monday, December 4, 2017.
Well, it’s clear that in this passage Gauthier is here speaking of things like “caste systems” and other such social inventions (eg, slavery) when he uses words like “higher level of artifice.” And it’s also clear that Gauthier doesn’t think that “natural harmony” is a realistic goal.
But, I think that “natural harmony” can be achieved — that is, when everyone actually gets to do, be and have whatever is truly in their hearts. When we stop trying to universalize (ie, Catholicize) values, we can each be free to pursue our truth. And only then can we ever have genuine, true and everlasting justice in this world.
This is what I call ‘Platonic Existentialism’ (or, Socratic Existentialism, take your pick).

In God We Trust

Thursday, November 16, 2017.
Now, communication involves sending out an encrypted message (because language is made up of arbitrarily designated symbols) followed by some correct decryption on the other end by the receiver. In truth, however, the decryption is up to each individual’s mind (which is what Augustine, Aristotle, and some others call “God”) since, the meaning is neither in the symbol/label itself nor in the cipher itself. In other words, what is revealed to each person’s individual mind is up to the individual’s mind and the sender of the message cannot determine/control what the receiver will get.

Once upon a time, anti-semitism was an anti-racism

Wednesday, November 15, 2017.
According to this hypothesis, the gnostics didn’t like this attitude of semitic-superiority. And so, the gnostics attempted to assert a strong anti-racist view. Now, if it’s true that Semites were the only ones being racist at that time, then an anti-racism would end up looking very anti-semitic . And so, it’s possible that what began as an anti-racist attitude for the gnostics probably got interpreted into an anti-semitic attitude in expression, because for the gnostics of the time, anti-racism=anti-semitism.

Platonic Existentialism

Thursday, October 5, 2017 🌲
If Socrates discovered any new way of thinking, it is away of thinking about existence. As I had said earlier today at 1304 hours: “For Plato, the good is rooted in nature — ie, the world outside of the cave, where the sun is. The good isn’t some metaphysical ‘idea.’ For Plato, there is something real that the shadows in the cave are merely representing. The real and genuine good is therefore the sun, and it is found outside of the cave. It is a kind of ‘pure love.’ . . . I am myself the form/shape of the Good. Thus, Plato’s philosophy is the first known case of an ‘existentialist philosophy’ in the West. And ‘essence’ is an Aristotelian favorite, and not a Plato’s.

Things deliberately created for the sake of being my food

Saturday, August 26, 2017 🌎
I don’t want to have to recycle and be vegan because the world stops being so nice when there’s so many people doing the same thing all at once. That’s really the only reason why I recycle when I do. I want to eat meat, but I don’t want animals to be mass-slaughtered as if their lives were nothing more than a number. I want to murder the cow with my bare hands, and skin it and tear out its guts and feel its warm blood on my hands and face before I eat it — if I eat it. Maybe if I realize that I have to do that every single time I want to eat a side of beef, I won’t want to eat it so often, or at all. But if I do kill the cow, I want to know that the cow lived his/her best life, and that I also lived my best life. I don’t want to breed cows and truly turn them into things deliberately created for the sake of being my food. This is what Aristotelianism, Stoic intellectualism, and Macedonian-values does to the world.

Manliness consists in: Justice, Courage, Wisdom, Sensitivity…

Friday, August 20, 2017.
The “Socratic” way of life, Russell says. This is the language used to describe the so-called stoic model. Little do these scholars know that Socrates is Plato’s interpretation of Achilles. If I suggest it, they deny it. Socrates was a real-life, ordinary man whose heroic qualities paralleled the legendary deeds of the mythological hero Achilles.
But nobody thinks of Achilles as being “Stoic,” do they? But if they don’t, then why do they consider Socrates as being “Stoic”?