Category Archives: Thwart em Thoughts

What we strive for

As a race, humans or anything else for that matter, strive for only one thing. To continue living. To perpetuate their respective bloodlines. Survival. Call it whatever you want – purpose, duty, instinct or whatever. In the end that’s what we are all designed to carry out, designed to do no matter what. Reproduce.

As humans, however, we are a little evolved. We do not just have mad sex and reproduce. Our duty’s a little different. We need to get the cogs of the world moving because we have this little thing called society and all the luxuries it has to offer can only be had if everything works in order and everyone does their job as a cog. What do we strive for? The answer is simple. We strive to reduce the effort our life takes and reproduce; to lessen the amount of effort put into survival and extend our survivability through an offspring. We are well on our way to achieve this.

With many intelligent people in the past few centuries we’ve exponentially cut down the effort required to achieve something. I bet if the pyramids were to be built now, it’d take less than a 10000th the man power that was required back then. That’s how far we’ve come to achieving one of our goals. If we were focused more on furthering our line, that’d be a little problem because we’d be vulnerable and wouldn’t have gotten any work done. Seriously. So we’ve all these little constraints and societal norms that prevent us from getting it too easily, so we can put effort into the other task that requires attention.

So far so good. However, there’s a new problem now. We’ve reached a good production rate. The factories are pumping out their boxes for the billions. Everyone’s working in a factory line to purchase something someone else is pushing out from another factory line. We’ve achieved process efficiency, turnaround times have lessened considerably, the turnover is good and we’re showing a good progressive growth in the industry. But, as the amount of effort required to make something goes down, so should the amount of people that’re required to make it. In the 1900s, it would’ve required about 8-20 people to assemble a car. Now it’s all fully automated and requires only one person to watch over the entire plant. But the population. Has it gone down? No!

We’ve cut down the efforts required, we show results that, we’ve achieved efficiency. That’s all ok on one side, but why do you go on pumping kids and complain they’re unemployed? People do not have to work. That’s what we strive for. Do dogs work? They just eat, yawn and fuck if they feel like it. Now that we’ve machines to do the work for us and every company wants to show profits on paper, cutting down personnel cost is the best way to do this. Of course, a software doesn’t demand money every month. It’s a better investment.

If we’re all thinking as a progressive society we should see the bigger picture of what we’re actually doing. Lessen the effort required for survival, lessen the people now that we require less effort for survival, survive! Ta-da~

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Inaqeuacy Convos

Every loneliness is a pinnacle.

    -Ayn Rand

Hmm.. What are conversations all about? Inadequacy. Inadequacy.

They are always about inadequacy. Conversations are mostly about people complaining about one thing or an other. Inadequacy. They talk about how it’s too hot or too cold, too damp or too dry, how their boss fucked them up or how their spouse killed their day, about how tough their job is and about how their pay is so low. Inadequacy. Behind all the complaints lie inadequacy if you keep digging. They get help from a friend on this or that, they do not know how to do this or that. Inadequacy.

Nothing unites two as hatred for something. Or the love for something leading to or stemming from the hatred of something else that’s not the something that they love or hate. They complain about inadequacy and get close.

Conversations of good times? What are those but reminiscences of a good time that point to inadequacy in the present, that they enjoyed back then, but they are not enjoying now. What about when people get together over drinks and discuss future prospects. They are inadequate to form their own decisions.  What about idle gossips? Jealousy. Jealousy stemming from inadequacy.

I am not saying this is a bad thing. When we see the human race as one organism, as one existence, that as a whole knows everything there is to know, then there is no inadequacy. We are all parts of this single entity. We are all but little inadequacies that seek solace in others’ inadequacies.

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Self-worth, Inner-happiness and other Interiors

I kind of have to go back on what I’ve said in some of my earlier posts, unfortunately. Stuff like why do you care what the other person says, why are you bothered with what someone else might think about you and such.

As promised by lots of books, movies and celebrity quotes, one can hardly find happiness inside themselves. It doesn’t exist like that. Happiness, sadness, the sense of victory, pride, power and every other feeling arises inside a person through another. Though the source could be said to be in oneself, it doesn’t originate there. It comes from empathy. We look at ourselves through another’s eyes and that’s how any and every value is identified with an object or action.

So, of course the teenage girl cares about what others think of her. This is about the time we become conscious of our consciousness. The period where our self-awareness develops by experiencing nothingness. Before this period, we are usually involved in something that keeps our mind busy. We are sponges before this, when our minds have not fully developed or attained equilibrium with its surroundings. As a person hits the teenage, s/he develops an understanding of most things and the mind slows down, gaining an inner-perspective. There are bouts of boredom and though we consciously are not aware of what we are experiencing, our consciousness is able to grasp some things itself, gain a deeper understanding. Understanding what our consciousness understands takes a few more years.

So, here we are after our grumpy teenage years, when we either go down the path, the rebellious path, which was nothing but an inner-conflict where the consciousness developed on its own, beyond our conscious understanding of our consciousness, or we refrain and indulge in normal activities, which are easy and do not involve ourselves understanding our consciousness.

But back to the topic at hand. Our value. We only derive it from other people around us. We are only as good as the other says we are. A song is as good as our friends say it is. So, we are all little balls of foggy consciousnesses that do not understand themselves very well. These little balls though, are able to connect to other balls through empathy and derive worth and value in themselves and the actions they birth.

“Find happiness within yourself”? Pfftt.. That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve heard. A person feels happiness when s/he parties or achieves something or gets lauded for anything at all. It’s when you are better off than other people. That’s everything that happiness is.

And while we are on this page “Stop comparing“? If we are to associate value to anything at all, if we are to have a perception of quality, of good or bad, one has to compare. In fact, the primary premise on which the human mind works is itself comparison. It compares any previous data it has and considers the present situation. It compares, it draws results. Comparison is the most important function of the human mind. That’s how it gets anything done at all. Even our conception of beauty is by comparing facial features.

Finally, there’s self-worth. There’s no such thing. Straight-up, there’s no such thing. What is worth, how do you define it? You define it by comparing yourself to what others are capable of, or any other trait that might occupy your mind at the moment. That’s worth. “Self-worth”? How does that work? Do you assign a faux value higher than what the society would normally deem you fit to have? Is that how it works? Or do you live in an imaginary bubble where you are the king and have the highest worth. Worth isn’t assigned by one to oneself. It’s how you think others think about you. It’s an assessment of yourself in the eyes of your friend or neighbor or a colleague. How do you increase it? How do you just have a higher self-worth?

Funny thing is how the feminists among others proclaim that they are wearing make-up, fancy clothing and beautify themselves “for themselves”. Yeah right. Ok, carry on. This again is (draws an arrow to 3rd and 4th paragraphs) back there. Consciously you know that you cannot derive value for yourself from yourself. You have to go out and flaunt that back-less black velvet dress. Well, suppose in a way you are right. That  you do it to gain value in  your eye. Maybe. But how does it actually work. You gain value only because others evaluate you. You look at yourself through the eyes of a loved one or any other person and think of what they might think of you. More often than not you don’t don your finest attire and slump down on the bed and gain value or feel good. It’s like saying “Hey John, you know what? I only eat pork and beef and ham because I help the world and the environment by eating them since they release a lot of methane and other green-house gases. By eating them, I cut-down the amount of gases released. In fact I’m personally responsible for the 2% cut-down in green-house gases last year”. No Jeff, you douchebag, you drive your big fucking hummer which releases a fuck-ton of carbon-di-oxide and other gases, then you go eat those pigs and cows that are being domesticated and mass produced with techniques such as artificial insemination because your fat ass wants more of the jumbo double patty burger. You are not saving anything. You should shut up and watch super bowl like the other stupid people do.

Well, let me just wear this eye-liner and eye-shadow and stay home all day.

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Funerals: Self Gratification

When will people admit they do everything for themselves. From attending a funeral, to bringing-up children. The “I bought you up by hand” argument is kind of getting out of hand. Do you do it for the kid? The kid did not ask for it. You had coitus and dropped the screaming pile on Earth. You did it for yourself, you did not selflessly decide to drop a baby on the sweet fast-deteriorating green-blue sphere . So deal with it, take care of your mess. Don’t blame the child and make the child feel indebted to you for the rest of his/her life. The child owes the parent nothing.

Funerals are the stupidest thing. Most people are always going around gawking about happiness this, happiness that but when it comes to funerals they all go like a zombie procession to the casket and look at the solemn face once more wearing their best sad face, wearing their best grim reaper black suits that do not reflect light, so that they do not shine anymore and reflect gloom and sadness. Well, the dead person certainly will not care if you dance around naked. You’re doing it for yourself! His soul isn’t going to get attached to a potted plant in the porch if you do not go. He’s dead. He’s gone.

Help! When  you help someone you get self gratification. You might give your life to help someone, literally die and save some; even that gives you something. You do have a take-away. However extreme the case, if you do it, you’ve a nice neat package in your hand at the end of it.

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Apriori Cognition

Children do not have well developed cognition. For example, when someone hides their face behind their hands and does the peek-a-boo thing, they become all excited because they do not have a fully developed sense of a-priori cognition. A-priori cognition here is as Kant states it. We do not have innate knowledge but from a-posteriori knowledge, a-priori knowledge can be derived. That is, if we see a ball rolling down a particular path and it disappears from our eye-sight, we still have an idea of where the ball lies. Seeing the ball rolling away is a-posteriori cognition and knowing where the ball would be is a-priori cognition. As we grow older, our a-priori cognition gets strengthened. Although, most people, it seems put a stop to the development of their a-priori cognitive sense.

Let’s go back to my first example. As children, the peek-a-boo thing would amuse us, probably because we were fascinated with all the sudden appearances and disappearances. One shouldn’t expect the same thing to work on a grumpy teenager. S/he probably punch your face as you pop out from behind your palms, “peek-a-b…ouch”. The teenager knows that you haven’t disappeared and magically reappeared. The teenager knows you hid behind your filthy hands and revealed your displeasing face again.

Most human emotions are based on the absence of consistent a-priori knowledge. Fear, because we do not know how something would go down. Anger, because we feel inadequate, or unable to help a situation or simply an outburst of emotions that force us into action. Sadness, because we face a loss. These emotions can be overcome easily. Say, you’d have fear if you did not study for an exam but if you did study for it, it can be overcome. Otherwise, it can be overcome by playing out in your mind what would happen if you did fail the exam and what course of action you could pursue. By action or reasoning any emotion can be overcome.

Let’s see what emotions most humans overcome this way and which ones they do not overcome. Fear of the dark. This is a splendid example. Initially when we have a poor grasp on a-priori cognition, we are scared. We are caught unawares as to what creepy-crawlies, what predators may lurk in the dark waiting for us to switch off the lights, only to pounce on us and devour us despite our bloodcurdling screams. As time goes on, we gain a-posteriori knowledge that nothing is going to attack us and we gain a-priori cognition. We take a look at things before switching off the lights and know that the things exist the way they were even when the lights are switched off. We can navigate in the dark now and have overcome our fear, a base response from an untrained mind. Humans overcome a bunch of emotions this way.

What intrigues me is how they stop developing their a-priori cognition. They develop it to brave their fear of the dark, fear of heights, to deal with sadness and control their anger by gaining a-priori knowledge by the process of reasoning, but then they stop completely at a point. They do not go on to develop it beyond a certain point. For example, the death of a loved one. Everyone is going to die. Chances are you’ve already seen a person die or even a whole bunch of people you’ve known. Everyday in the news, we hear thousands have been killed off in one corner of the world or another, be it natural disasters or army invasions or civil wars. Hell, there’s even an obituary column to remind you daily that you are temporary. Still, I’m confounded by the fact, I’m totally stumped when I see people crying. They saw it coming, all their life but still they grasp at straws instead of seeing the light. For a less morbid example, take how teenagers react when they see their friends at the mall or the sidewalk. They go crazy! Like yeah, you live in the same city and what do all folk do except go to the mall or some other stupid place. They go haywire when they see their friends,  like they won the noble prize for running hundred meters under 7 seconds, underwater in a zero gravity field.

So, yep. Develop it.

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Do I want to do this or that!

I just can’t figure out how, when I want something and even if there aren’t any physical barriers or when it’s not beyond my ability to do the thing, why am I still unable to do it. Writing or speaking to someone has often helped me organize my thoughts and come to the answer. Let’s see if I’m able to get to it now.

I’m not exactly sure how to write this as generally as possible. So I’ll just go with an everyday example. I want to talk to a person. I have all the skills I require. I can speak. Well, what else do I need? This is what I want in my mind. To speak to the person. For some reason however, there’s a contradiction of this want in my very own mind. How can there co-exist such a contradiction! But is it even that, when only one of those thoughts present in my mind wins. Is it a want, that I cannot fulfill? It’s not like I’m lying down a grassy field with the cold moonlight showering over me, a pleasant breeze caresses me and I reach out and try to hold the moon in the palm of my hand. No, this is very doable. But still what’s stopping me? The bizarre thing is that both these thoughts of action originate in the same brain. What leads me to want to do it and what is stopping me from doing it!

Something comes to mind. Earlier I just reached home and was cleaning up the place. I lifted a chair over the PC’s monitor to clean the corner and in my mind I’d already seen this happen, the chair’s legs tripping over the monitor. I knew a couple of milliseconds ahead that it was going to happen today. Though theoretically I knew it was going to happen, I practically was incapable of stopping it. I had not even theoretically devised my course of action in case that it should really happen as I feared. Is this it? Oh yes, I believe this could be it. There’s bridging required I suppose, between one’s theoretical mind and one’s practical mind.

Even considering the above situation, I can come to the same conclusion. People can only do what they’ve been doing for a while and it comes to them easily. Anything else that’s been put away for a while becomes really really hard. Without the first step, everything is hard. I have practically not spoken to many people, honestly. I hardly speak. But why do I feel the need to do it in the first place! Again there’s a conflict of ideas here. We are born as blank slates and ideas are fed into us from a very early age. We do not get to pick which ideas would direct our life in which direction. We just absorb them initially, all of it. I believe it’s this that’s causing the confusion and muddle up in my head. The second part, which does not want to allow the action of talking to happen is the newer part of the brain, which I’ve populated with ideas that have come to me after logical reasoning. However there’s a legacy part of the brain upon which everything is built. If this were to collapse, the entire structure of it would collapse because everything in the mind is just bits and pieces linked together on a little delicate base. Every thought, idea, emotion piled up like little boxes. Over the years, I suppose the old boxes could be overpowered by the new ones, but they still exist as a nagging eerie voice inside our hollow heads.

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Marraige Longevity

In todays issue, why marriages last longer in some cultures while in others they don’t!

It’s pretty simple actually. I live in India. Here people have to wait for 20~25 years to get laid.. I mean married. It is the most powerful driving force. And when people have been kept away from it for their whole life and are comfortably awarded with it by the society at their own disposal, they would not want to do anything to fuck it up and lose it. That’s why married people are more responsible, clutching at the only socially approved means for them to perform what every animal has to do and has done for the past million of years.

In western cultures, you can fuck around earlier. So the value of the product diminishes. Hence, when you marry you need not feel the need to put in effort to protect it; you could always get it from somewhere else if required. It’s a pretty fluid commodity.

Arranged marriages do not last longer. Those are falsehoods, misinterpretations.

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Unentropatized

You’d know a bit of what entropy is if you’ve read my previous posts,or if you’d paid attention in your physics classes. I’m about to equate it to something else. I’m turning it into a human quality.

Unentopatized human beings are those beings that have minimum entropy and are really random. They break out of the crowd and do things that are different.

Everyone is unentropatized in the beginning. I don’t mean in the murdering, animalistic way, but just the non-conformity thing. Then as we go on living we gain entropy, it sort of maxes out, we lose all the randomness and we start following the crowd. Now when this happens and every human being gains the most entropy and evens out, that is the end of our species. There can be no apparent development after that.

These entropatized beings, these jagged rocks and edges that stick out of our history are what cause the evolution of the race to happen. So, do not gain entropy, be unentropatized! Gaining entropy is easy, that is what comes to us naturally. The sun’s gaining it, the stars are gaining it, hell every object is gaining it. Going against the flow is what’s hard but keep pushing and you’ll reach a point where you never gain it.

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The Balancing Law of Positives and Negatives

I have been wanting to write this for a while. Every little thing in the world has a balance. If something pushes you right, say the wind pushes you right, you push left with appropriate force to keep the balance. This balance can be found in every thing. This post is mostly going to talk about the impact of this positive and negative balance in our emotions and on contexts in such level, not on a base physical level, but to form a bigger picture of it.

Okay, now everyone has positive emotions and negative ones (no matter how you term whatever emotion you have, let’s just say you like some, you don’t like some). Now, the thing is, it’s really simple – can there be light without dark?  No. If there is no scale for comparison, you can’t differentiate between the two. Here’s a poem I wrote to that effect. Anyway, coming back to our topic – similarly there cannot be happiness without the presence of sadness! You drink you get a hangover, you eat too much sweets, you get diabetes, you run, you get tired, but each one of these things gives you a reward for you doing that thing  you do not want to do (get hungover, run, get diabetes)

If you lock yourself out of sadness by forming a shield, you protect yourself from it by all possible means, then there can possibly be no happiness. This applies to a lot of things. It’s not that the more prone you are to sadness, the more potential for happiness you foster. No, it’s not that at all! But if you want happiness, you have to also be open to sadness. The emotions can either flow both ways or stay at the center where you don’t feel anything and sit coolly.

Now, let’s go a little more into this, into a spiritual (bullshit) level. I’ve experienced that storing up my desires, maybe not pursuing them or not acknowledging them has worked to my advantage (or has it?). As everyone does, I too have many desires, but I actively pursue about five percent of so of them. Likewise, when I really want something and I pursue it, I get it most of the time! Almost all the time, I get something for which I put in some real effort. Only some real effort is required on my part. Is this as a result of me storing up my deservance?

What I have also found is one can channel such emotions and happiness itself. One can consciously determine (through a little bit of training) which sources provide happiness. Most people find happiness by hanging out with friends and partying and performing such social activities, but for me, it has been channeled into the admiration of the arts. When I look at a good piece of writing or a good drawing or a good dance, happy tears well up in my eyes, It is intense because of all the stored up emotions. I guess it’s like semen or something. Spiritual semen!

There’s also a little thing more that I want to write though it might deserve a separate post altogether, I won’t. We appreciate some emotions and discard some, as if they shouldn’t exist. I’ve come to the point where I’m almost stranded in a small floating boat, in the calmest of the calmest seas, no wind, no tide, the sky is a thick blue like someone poured out ink on a bloating paper. It’s calm, there’s no difference, everyday I see the same thing, nothing. I get happy nowadays that I can feel sadness, when there are rough winds, I feel happy, the birds chirp for me and the climate is warm and friendly. Maybe I’m nearing the Zen state or something… You, discriminate against emotions much?

EDIT: I found this gem.

Premise of Emotions

Premise of Emotions

I had lots more to write, it was a grand theory, but it seems, unfortunately, I had forgotten most of it. Anyway this is it! You can’t have one without the other, Two sides of the same coin, two edges of the same blade, and such might apply.

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A Little Extra Motivation

When left alone, you contemplate certain things that no one should have the misfortune of doing. Especially, if you do not have deep-rooted beliefs of any sort. The inception of the planets, life forms and purpose.

There is no God, no heaven, no hell. There is no one waiting on the other side, not your father or grandfather, or your best friend or husband. There are no epic battles going on. No Zeus with thunders in the background or Poseidon, to sink your ships. Once you are dead your are gone, that’s all. Imagine. You wouldn’t have to actually because you won’t feel a thing. It really is nothing.

Wonder why and how our planet has evolved this way, this particular way, so that life was and is possible. What are we to do with it?

In the movie, The Art of Getting By, there’s this awesome line

Death doesn’t scare me, no. It’s life that scares me.

Same.

Do you know what entropy is? Please read. It’s the reason everything is as it is. Even humans have entropy. Immense amounts actually. Entropy is the state of chaos. In physical terms, it is randomness, that makes action and movement inevitable. Consider a ball at the top of a slope. This might be considered as minimum entropy. When it drops to a level surface and stops rolling, it’s at thermodynamic equilibrium(this is actually kinetic energy, but just imagine something like that. And electrons don’t actually spin). Entropy, once it hits the maximum cannot be reversed. Universal entropy, that is. When the galaxies have expanded far enough, when the stars have burnt long enough, when the electrons have spun fast enough, there’ll be nothing left then. Energy can only be transferred when there is a place with higher quality than others.

So that’s that. If nothing fortunate happens, that’s how the world will go out. Like a candle that burns out slowly. Not with a boom, not with an explosion, but with a silent fizz.

So, now here we are. Insignificant specks. Compared to the length of the time line of evolution that has made our lives possible, *snap* that’s how long we are going to exist on this wretched piece of spinning rock. And we take everything to our head! As Insignificant as we are and as small, whatever we do, it don’t matter. So, go out and do those things you have always wanted to do!

There’s no purpose but the one you make for yourself. Don’t let anyone tell you what you can or cannot do. As a rule, everyone is seeking maximum entropy, unwittingly. Everyone wants the other to be similar to them, having similar likings and taste, do things they do and appreciate and in their way. Yeah, people will deny this vehemently, but it is a fact. Don’t give a flying fuck and do what you want.

Remeber there’s nothing but emptiness on the other side. So we might want to extend our stay on the conscious side a little bit. Don’t go too YOLO and you are going to be fine. The only regret you will have is the one before you die. Not on the escalator to heaven. So live life. Eh?

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