Tuesday, November 11, 2008

getting back to science...

STILL MORE: favorite quote from this book it's actually a re quote of Oscar Wild: "we are all in the gutter, but some of us are gazing at the stars..." D.


some things I always had a problem with:

the analogy used to explain basic relativity: is the train moving or is the platform moving? what a silly question... you must burn energy to have that behemoth of a train move! there is no energy spent for just... standing on the platform... (if you have any doubt as to what is ultimately moving in that situation, just have somebody in the train pull the emergency break...or better still, have the train run out of fuel)

quantum mechanics: the idea that you have a measuring instrument interacting with what it's supposed to measure and thus the measurement turns-out wrong and that's a problem we just have to live with... you should be able to at least estimate the error, take it into account and move on... it's an *error of the measuring process* -- has nothing to do with the underlying reality...

a lot of things that are currently main stream appear beyond ridiculous and I think Einstein was correct (although deemed wrong according to current ideas) to question the foundation of quantum mechanics.... D.

MORE: well... I just have to give up on trying to get G. to read it (he's read a couple of paragraphs I pointed-out and said "cool!" -- not exactly the heated discussion I was hoping for... D.
Einstein's mistakes


P.S. science and the like may not be a perfect way to figure out what's going on but it seems to be the best we've got... D.

Monday, September 8, 2008

I took a look at fractals, a way back...

... doesn't seem to be very promising, although I wonder if we "see" fractal-like images before falling asleep and somehow end-up hallucinating as a result; I seem to be able to lucidly dream to some extent (are some people lucid all the way through? seems hard to tell -- how do you know you are not dreaming that you are lucidly dreaming?)


P.S. this Claude guy was a trip... (did confirm some thing I noticed and seems odd to me: having a dream that uses information from a prior dream, sometimes a very old dream)

P.P.S. I also read a bit about hallucinations in schizophrenia (interesting that one school of thought holds that there is nothing "wrong" with these people... in a medical sense... (just a different kind of "normal") D.

I need to get out of the funk with this...

... but I just don't know which way to go; G.'s been asking me to "dump Archy McNally" (and his ilk) and read some Dostoevsky instead (I didn't quite like his writing in the past, seemed like a boring guy that rambled on and on... and never quite got to the point, I just I never really stuck around for the ending...)


P.S. So I guess I'm going to give the guy chance , G. says it all comes together at the end -- we'll see... D.

Friday, August 1, 2008

are we in a self created bubble?

do we have any idea of what's really going on?


P.S. are things like truth and reality -- human concepts -- really "real"?

the great puzzle or the great absurd?

I often get the impression that it's really a game... a puzzle of some sort that we all get a chance to figure out -- that the pieces are all there, we just need to figure out how to make them work...

we have decent control over a lot of things in our environment... so is it just a matter of time and persistence? Is one of us or more likely humankind collectively going to solve it in the end? or are we going to run out of time? is there a clock ticking away? and what does it all matter? so what if we figure it out? so what if we live forever? ultimately... it all seems absurd anyways...

is it all just a bizarre dream?


fast forwarding

it's hard not to think that if we could fast forward long enough nothing would really matter... (no matter what you do, you'd still be dead in the long run...and not just you, everything gets erased and becomes irrelevant)


P.S. unless we (humans) pull something extremely unusual...

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Unitarian church (gave it a try...)

I really didn't feel like going but G.'s been after me to give it a try (he's got this idea that because they use symbols from different religions they must be an open minded bunch -- the kind of non-dogmatic people that can have real conversations on religion and the like).


P.S. it was mostly boring although I had to excuse myself at one point and rushed out of the room so I would not have to explode in laughter right in the middle of the "fellowship" (they were singing Kumbaya and praying for the gas prices to come down...) D.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

sustainable hedonism

this is what people appear to seek in this life (or any other future life); it's just that they have or believe to have different pleasures (e.g. a religious person derives or believes the religious path will bring her/him most pleasure in the long run) D.

Monday, April 7, 2008

William Barrett: Irrational Man

not a bad book but it could have been much better if he would have separated searching for the truth (rationalism, in his book) from searching for a way to deal with life (religion, in his book) D.

Friday, February 8, 2008

digging into G.'s stash of books...

William's Barrett: Irrational Man (A study of Existential Philosophy)

we had an hour wait to get into the restaurant for dinner so we ended-up back in the car, reclined the seats, got comfortable and I started reading out loud... (G.'s read this book a number of times -- his copy is quite worn -- but not recently, so we are going over it together).


P.S. had to ignore some startled looks... some passers by must have thought we were on a pretty odd date... (my bare feet were resting against the windshield -- I can't get really comfortable in a car without doing that...) D.

Friday, January 25, 2008

looking into "secular meditation" (just reading for now)

MORE: done with Herbet Benson's "The Relaxation Technique"; used Transcendental Meditation for his research... I see that as a weakness (not exactly secular), he claims you'd get the same response if you did it from a secular stand point... maybe, maybe not...I give him credit for mentioning possible side effects (such as hallucinations for those who meditate for hours for a period of weeks --> seems to be consistant with this TM horror story) D.

I think there may be something to it... (although the idea of repeating things over and over seems unhealthy to me even when outside of a religious context) D.