the only easy day was yesterday

Thursday, July 26, 2007

I was just thinkin' I shoulda thought

Today I had a thought. It was one of those thoughts that I was sorta embarassed to not have had much earlier. I thought how I was so involved in criticizing the world that I live in and the way in which people operate within it, but still seek to be somewhat objective and not dogmatic in how I deal with those people, and in thinking in these ways, I've neglected to even think of how I'd actually act in the ideal world which I would like to see. It may be that I don't have a real vision of a perfect world, it may be that I don't strive toward anything in particular, I just try to see what is not working for the human community and analyze how life can be changed and improved upon. The question has also come up in my mind about whether it is appropriate to act in a way that you see fit in an ideal time and place for human beings, or whether it is better to be more concerned with fixing the problems at hand. My vision of an ideal world may be a time where people can all act in the way that they see fit for human beings to act and still cooperate, so in that case all I can do is act as I see fit, rather than devoting my attention to solving problems outside of myself, and influence people as they come into my life and share with them my vision. Peanut gallery, speak...

7 comments:

The W said...

Regaurding "whether it is appropriate to act in a way that you see fit in an ideal time and place for human beings, or whether it is better to be more concerned with fixing the problems at hand." I see the two as being connected as one. In being concerned with fixing the problems at hand (and acting as an intellectual to confront these problems and work towards a possible solution), are you not in fact acting as you would see fit in a more ideal time? It should be noted that I diverge from your thinking on the note of ideals and perfections (utopias i suppose). I hold that there is no ideal, no perfect, and no utopia in our future. There are simply infinitely "better" forms of social, political, and economic structures that we as human beings have the duty to strive for.
Back to your point: the problems at hand are in fact those problems which prevent us from moving foward. We must be just as concerned with them as with those more theoretical problems that exist in our collective psyches (and thus have more application to a "better" more far off society). It should be added "if we continue to keep the ideal in mind as an ideal, it will continue to be just that." It is therefore our duty to act as "idealy" as possible in the present (as long as we are still able to function and interact properly enough in present day society whereas the masses would still be interested in what be have to say and not dismiss us as crackpots.)

Regaurding: "so in that case all I can do is act as I see fit, rather than devoting my attention to solving problems outside of myself, and influence people as they come into my life and share with them my vision." I see your vision as slightly limited. If you have suggestions for a better society than the one we have today, then it is your duty to disseminate your ideas to as many people as possible. By acting as you see fit, you are doing a great thing, however it is not enough to wait for people to come into your life. You are denying General Human Culture of greatr thoughts by keeping your ideas to yourself and those who are close to you. This way you can both act good yourself, and solve problems outside yourself.

This post reminds me of that one you put up regaurding partaking in activites that you know are "bad", but doing them anyway knowing full well their detrimental effects on society. I see everything as a constant balence, being able to cause change without completely isolating yourself from those around you (despite their "improper" actions, habits, and whatnot)...

Jasper said...

This is the problem; I don't have any ideal society structured in my head, but I do have Ideas, just like you, about how society can be improved, but the way that the human mind works, it is impossible to classifly the results of those changes as anything other than ideals, even with a different word, the connotation is still 'a place or a thing that we strive for'. So in seeing that the idea of ideals is essentially inescapable, then only do I come to the crossroad of acting as I would when things are like I would have them be in an ideal world (a world after all the social and cultural changes I could think of were executed), or acting as I need to to steer myself and others towards those changes and views. The question bugs the nihilist in me because I would always like to be doing the good for myself and my ego and my well being; in which case I would act as if the world were perfect and go about my bussiness accordingly. But it seems, conceptually, that being what I want a human to be ideally, and bettering the human race and staying away from nihilism are two very conflicting goals. To strive towards change requires vigorous work and effort and may compromise many other areas of one's life, making it nearly impossible to be the kind, social, and honest person that your morals call for at the same time. The most immediate example is being a social and loving person, while maintaining studies and any such intellectual pursuits can be compromising to those relationships. Another example is enlightening those close to you to the ignorance of the way that they live their lives, it is emotionally draining; if my changes were implemented (there isn't a list in stone, this is more theoretical) I would not need to have these emotional struggles with people closest to me, and I would not need to worry about balancing my study with my pleasure because it would be more pleasure being respected as a thinking human being, rather than having to go out and pay for and earn that respect in the ways that others have set out for me. This is mainly an internal struggle that I'm going to have to get over on my own and try to compromise the person that I'd want people to see in me and everyone else, and the person who needs to see change. This blog is part of my change the world mentality - the person I'd want to be wouldn't have people talking over a computer rather than in person, but the person seeking change knows that it's a way to bring more people together than would be willing to talk otherwise and that this is a good way to get ideas out to many people...

lyneric said...

i agreee with "the w". acting in the way you see fit is connected to fixing the problems at hand (as you perseive them to be). in identifying and analyzing what you "don't think is working for the community" you ARE visualizing the ideal world (accoring to jasper). i also agree with "the w" that you need to reach beyond yourself in anyway way you can in the given moment. this may be as simple as behaving in the way you wish others would, threby seting an example, which is no smaall feat. or it may be on a larger scale through more organized efforts to challenge and or influence and affect larger groups of people. either way, you don't need to have it all figured out before acting. you are living your life with reflection and introspection and you are in te process of identifying the "ills" of society as you see them. this is a life-long, noble pursuit but one that becomes meaningless and perhaps even hipocritical if kept in reserve. to reflect on "society" but rermain insular in your thoughts does little or nothing to affect society. the smallest action can and does have great effect. do not wait to have it all figured out before acting nobly not simply thinking as such.

Jasper said...

The W is warner by the way, if you didn't know. As for my question, it is not one of whether acting in the way that you want is the right thing to do, that is obviously true. It is rather a decision of whether to act as you would in the place and time that you would see as the best that humanity can acheive versus acting in the ways necessary in order to change society and culture for the better that you believe can be acheived. An easy example is my want to treat people in loving, respectful, and intelligent ways versus how I see it necessary to 'enlighten' the many, many ignorant people that I come across; this can seem dogmatic and actually opposing to how I would like people to treat each other, but that is my problem - one has a much better chance of changing the world but it contradicts what I would have them believe if I convinced these people, and the other fulfills these qualities, but like Warner said, is not nearly enough to change anything. I'm fully aware that the only conclusion is to do as any situation demands; compromise, live as I'd have people live, but if need be resort to other tactics, however often that is - and even though it is the logical conclusion, it isn't satisfying.

lyneric said...

oh boy. some big points to attempt to address. first off i know "the w" is warner. his photo helped to clue me in. : )

god, i hate smilies in emails, they are like laugh-tracks; if you didnt get the joke or dont find it humorous why should canned laughter (or a smiley) make it different. but i digress.....

ok, back to what i was saying, some big points: first off i want to say: "dude, relax!!" and i dont mean that in a pejorative way!! i mean it in-so-far-as lending unsolisited advice as to how to affect change. if you simply let yourself be, ie: relax! you will respond in the moment to address and influence those in your company through action, example and/or words. trust me when i tell you, enlightening the "ignorant" is iimpossible unless the so called ignorant are even the slightest bit open to what you have to offer. if instead you live your life with high standards and expressed ambition and respect of yourself and others (no matter how ignorant) you will not need to resort to dogmatic measures of enlightment which are doomed to fall on deaf ears. people are able to hear and see when they are able to hear and see. some messages may never be absorbed but i firmly believe you stand the best chance of enlightening through example. continue your investigations and questioning and diolog but when it comes to action, lead through example. think of all the teachers who droned on and who you eventually tuned out (as my old apple computer remided me in its annoying drone"....ms. j no one is listening to you....") yep! true. no one was, but i'd like to think some were at least noticing my actions and in so observing and being influenced. of course that could be a pipe dream but dont burst my bubble just yet, ok.

btw, what do you think about all the doping crap going on in the tour de france? probably no more than any other sport but they are actually considering cancelling the whole thing!! amazing! do you think doping is just a part of sports now? like any other modern invention or research, just something to help aid the peak performance of the athlete? hell! even with steroids i couldnt handle the pyrenees in any kind of cempetitive time. so perhaps dope is just part of training??????? not that i'm advocating doping but i wonder how we distinguish betweeen what is acceptable training an enhancement and what is not.

The W said...

i wonder what miss madeline has to say about doping in sports...

Madeline Mindich said...

I'm not only responding to this because i have been summoned by the W's captivating inquisitions"i wonder what miss madeline has to say about doping in sports..."

and though Jasper and the W's stubborn conviction that i would not respond did put me in the mood to prove them wrong...

I am also pretty concerned with the weight of human responsibility that most existentialists bow down to in fear, and most of human kind (non-people) manage to evade through being complacent.

On fixing problems at hand versus acting in an ideal human way (and possibly losing the self-expression to a sort of Bermuda Triangle between idealists and humankind functioning in the global society) I have committed myself to functioning towards some unknown ideal. It seems to me that fixing problems is mostly theoretical, involving a lot of possibility lost to study. What is practical is starting somewhere- even if it is on whim- just to recognize that we have some power to change.

Theoretically, the more i think about the condition of the world- the loss of pride and culture, the muddling down of understanding so that everyone can be "equal" (at one time everyone understood English because everyone read the bible. With English also came the allusions to the bible in many other works. The standard of learning and people rising to it instead of moving the bar to people which is what is occuring now is probably why the standard learning of the Koran has managed to unite soo much of the world), the isolation of people because of social stature and type of education...- the more i feel that change can't happen. Thinking about the condition of the world takes up the possible time of thinking about possibility and acting upon that.

(recent actions:
-obsessively picking up garbage-
-throwing biodegradable stuff outside so it can be of use outside of a landfill
-attempting conversations with 'strangers'- I tried to hold a human conversation with the taxi driver as he obviously charged me 113 dollars to take me to the airport. We lasted the whole hour ride and marvelled at astrology, cultural anthropology and the prerequisites of being an actor (getting outside the self)
-distributing ducks, supplying mystery and chance to engage the human mind
-preventing harmful substances and the cheap and accessible stuff in supermarkets from being registered (ex: crisco and sugar free fat free strawberry banana flavored generic gelatin)
(i must admitt i feel a bit eccentric)
Any Suggestions?

On doping...
"so perhaps dope is just part of training"
that inspired me to think of marathons and the different heats. Doping seems like an unfair advantage unless everyone is using them. It pushes peak performance but for the purpose of exceeding natural limits and the limits of other people. It seems a little stealthy since it is done in secret probably for the purpose of defeating an opponent by unfair advantage (similar to metal in boxing gloves and NAS? in fast and furious cars). I'm not sure if it is just a rumor that doping has bad effects. Or if the effects are actually bad if these athletes bodies are trained to handle it as they are trained to handle other bizzare exercizes that are just about as absurd as being on bed rest. Or if these athletes are not afraid of the damage and are just in it for the gold which seems absurd because who would want to win to burn out and then fade away as soon as their record is exceeded by some faster person, or some stronger drug? Plus- if everyone is doing drugs, and it is on all sides of the competition then doesn't it make sense to take it away from all sides and be a little les pumped, a little less fast, a little less deceitful?