Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sexism

That word up there, wew, seeing it there makes me like I’ve loaded a ton of responsibility over my shoulders and I’d be making tons of enemies soon. Well, I’m not going to be criticizing anyone’s opinions or offering up my own on the various sex terminologies that have come up in the past decade or so. I was watching The Mentalist, the TV show with the blond guy who’s always smiling, and there was this one statement he made. He says something along the lines of “You wouldn’t drive your sister’s pink bicycle all the way across town for…”, I think he meant unless it was really important for the 10 y/o, he wouldn’t have driven long on a pink bicycle.

At that point I kinda recalled my childhood, me being reluctant to drive this cycle called the Ladybird and also not wanting to enter this shop called Sri Muruga Sarees, because it had the word ‘Saree’ in it which is a female attire.

So where do these ideas come from and where does sexism begin? From the earliest of years, we are taught to associate pictures with words. Take the picture book from your elementary school for instance. The small shiny book, with a shiny red thing in a particular distorted non-geometrical form, that had five little letters written next to them ‘a-p-p-l-e’. We form an idea there. An idea that says if you see this red thing (or green or whatever color we want it to be, we later learn. Thanks genetic-engineering) in this particular peculiar shape, it’s an apple. Similarly what images do you associate when you say man or woman. The term is broad but I see very specific images. The first thing that pops up in my mind is of a very muscular person (imagine Goku), waist-up half portrait, camera angled up from below, portraying a towering, fearful, strong person, light effects that emphasize it. The image speaks for itself. When I think woman however, I see a full body image, she’s actually lost in the background with weak colors blending in, wearing a headscarf, sitting down with both her legs bent half in one direction, I can’t see her face, she’s probably holding a baby, I’m probably thinking about Mary in the stables(?), though I am unaware of how that story goes. It’s a weak image. It speaks of love and care primarily, but it if you take the layers apart, the underlying tones sing of cowardice and frailty.

That is the first image that pops into my mind. It’s the unconsciousness part of my mind kicking in, the auto-pilot. I, consciously do not have opinions that lie anywhere close to what my mind projects on first thought. That however is the base on which the rest of my thoughts and ideas are assembled. The base. These ideas are thus what were fed into me when I was a kid, unreasoning, pure and paper white.

Every word goes with an idea. We usually draw from a well of ideas but for collectives such as man or woman we have strong pre-processed images attached with the words. When we see a man or a woman, we already have an impression of them, because we are able to categorize them, they fall into something already though you have absolutely nada inkling about the smallest thing they have done or had done to them.

Sexism is inherent, (kinda?) we were into all this hunting and things ages ago. We still have the flight or fight thingies going on inside our head though we face a fraction of the dangers we used to back then. Similarly, the roles that were asserted aeons ago are still with us in a way. Television conforms to these gender roles mostly. Unless, the story itself revolves around a strong female lead. And what do we have even then? Charlize Theron, in her tight clothing and boyish haircut. Where’s the girly stuff in the strong female lead? We only get to see them as outliers and they in no way affect our deepest impression of the female being. We see qualities that are inherent to men, and we think they’re different, brave and strong like a man.

I blame the media!

Chaosity

Struggle is what men thrive upon. Imagine a life without strife. It’d be boring, pointless as ever and depressing. A new struggle presents itself, however, across the timeline. Take fear, for instance. The early man must’ve feared the cold, wild beasts like lions and tigers. Now how does fear stand? Man fears failure, he fears rejection, he fears getting kicked from his job, he fears the future and he fears public speaking. Whenever something’s been cleared, something new pops up – a small problem, something life threatening or maybe a slip-up that turns things awry. But chaosity is ever present. It has to be. For existence to go on, there has to be an element of chaos, the balance of scales, between light and dark, good and evil. If there was no conflict, no movement or transfer of energy from a higher state to lower, life would end.

I think we can agree we’re beyond the point of Necessity is the mother of all invention. We have all our basic needs taken care of and much much more beyond that. The most basic needs must’ve nessesiated man’s utmost effort like, food storage, galleries and garrisons. After that it’s been a smooth transition to A higher level of Comfort is the father of all invention. 200 years ago, I highly doubt people’d have felt the necessity of something such as the internet. He would’ve yearned for the letter he sent to be delivered faster however, and voila we have something far greater in terms of communication than the average man, let alone the greatest minds could’ve envisioned at that time.

So what is it one must do? Do not be a passive observer. Increase chaosity. Brew chaos. Think of something wild, work on it. Take people under your wing and push forth with your ideas. Let it create a whole bunch of new problems. Let men thrive on what they thrive on best. Struggle and strive.

Imagine stability. We’ve created the ideal society. Everyone’s good. Every person drinks tea and utters pleasantries. They’re so polite that when two people run into each other, a deadlock happens because neither of them are able to move forward because they’re too polite. But wait! We’ve the DPE (Deadlock due to Politeness Extermintor) organisation for that. Non-profit of course. They remove you from the spot and watch video footages of your arrival at the location and figure out who’s supposed to go first and puts the person ahead when they put both of them back. There’re no robberies, no murders. The most interesting news in the last 8 months was that piece about the guy who accidently made a dildo out of anti-matter. You go to the bar. There’s a system, a form you’ve to fill up, a procedure to be followed to pick up girls. It works 100% of the time because people hate failure, get disheartened by it and thus it was removed. The government’s first policy is failure removal from every individual’s life. Would it be worth it? *shudders*

The War Games

War is stupid. There I said it. Army is made up of idiots or psychopaths. Honestly, think about it. Imagine if a scrawny gaunt person with thinning silver hair sits in his basement all day with an overhanging light in his dank basement thinking of how to kill people, you’d label him a psychopath and call the cops on the person immediately. However, when the government you elect pays people to do it in designated, centralized air-conditioned buildings with canteens and discount shops and give them medals and bestows honors, we applaud their effort, salute them and celebrate them.

War is like a sport with less rules. During war, the world is like a giant Roman Colloseum where people hack each other to their deaths. Each side trains their teams, they practice their stuff and plan out their attack strategy. It’s like a hardcore football game with weapons instead of balls. Like seriously, isn’t that sick? You can call it “defense training” or what not but basically it’s training to kill people. You train all day to kill people effectively and all those high ranking officers think about nothing but killing people. Sick.

Why can’t we just host a battle Olympics or something? Like the runners muscle it out in the field and throw short-put balls or swing javelins, the loser team relinquishes control of the territory or the resource or pays the winner on an annual agreement.

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Objective View of Things

Having an objective view of something means to see the truth as it is, without being clouded by prejudices and emotional fallacies. But truly, can a person live while having objective views? To be objective might mean to not change anything, to be of no consequence. Only then can you see and think in terms of absolute truth. Otherwise, always there would be some kind of prejudice layered on your thoughts because we would be forced to think in terms of the outcomes and results and our past feelings and limited experiences.

Let us consider you are a single person. You are in no immediate contact with anyone else and of no consequence to anyone else. Then your view is the absolute in regards to a particular object. The object exists because you acknowledge its existence. Now your view is objective. Your subjective view becomes objective here since it’s the absolute. There are no other views available. Now if you have someone to whom you are of consequence and someone who is of consequence to you, your view might remain the same but now there’s an additional view to which you are empathetic. Now, there are two subjective views.  Through empathy both of you can decide upon a view as the absolute and both of you can enter the objective state of view. Now, there were two subjective views that let’s say, differed. One of them had to be let go to reach a state of objectivity. One person had to let go or the person saw the truth and had to alter their previous state of principles and beliefs since the person saw that the truth was different from what the person had initially believed. There had to be a compensation in one wing or the other to reach the compromised truth. This is the common truth. The truth is, when multiple parties are involved, the result reached, the belief held that spreads across most of the common denominating factor.

In our existence we run across a vast number of people, each with a subjective view of their own. It is impossible to live objectively or have a view that’s devoid of the subjective for a human being because if a human were to live entirely objective that would be akin to not existing hence, impossible. Truth is simply a conglomeration of different subjective views, where one or the other had to let go of their subjective view to reach a common ground, also know as the objective view, the truth. For two sects that hold different views, the truth might be entirely different, but each would hold their ground and have a strong base to say that this is indeed the truth, showcasing their beliefs because of the number of people that acknowledge it. Hence for a person living a disrupted life, devoid of contact nothing is the truth and everything is the truth. The views the singular person holds could be the absolute, but this isn’t ideal as such a living structure is hard to reach from the current structure which we are thrown into upon birth and, in which most continue to live in for their entire lives being blithely unaware nor having  a single thought on why things are the way they are. Also, since it’s a single person’s view, the absolute here is easy to change because the number acknowledging the said truth is minimal or one. This throwness, as Heidegger puts it, where we are thrown into a world and into circumstances that we have no control over makes it impossible for us to conceive new world views, since our perception and our thought process has been considerable narrowed to fit with the current proceedings.

To be entirely liberated and have the widest and have the most open of views is impossible because of the data we inherit. The first thing we see, hear or feel will ingrain itself into our brains and the emotions associated with it would change our perception of every single thing we see afterward. We think in terms of things we have learnt before, anything and everything. Learning or feeling a single thing can permanently alter our being and our perception. The most we can do is to explain and associate our feelings with the metaphysical world and control them.

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Gyms Workout Our Brains

I was faced with a predicament. My job needed me to come in early but my sleep cycles had gone beyond me control. Some days I was going to sleep after the birds started chirping and a few other I pushed further and had my breakfast before getting some much needed sleep. My job needed me to come in early though and it wasn’t going to accept excuses. I told them I need time to adjust and was wondering what I could relate to, to make them understand. The first thing that popped up was If I asked you to drop down and give me thirty push-ups now, would you be able to do it?

I knew the response to this would be that while one is a physically demanding activity, the other is more of a mental activity. I needed to tackle this. I needn’t employ the dialectical to do that because when I thought about it there seemed to be a scientific thing behind this; more of a behavioral thing actually.

We’ve heard of stories where scared mothers do things, stories in which they experienced an adrenaline rush as their kid got trapped under a car or got attacked by a bear and these ordinary moms lifted 2 tons of steel and fought off bears. These may or may not be true but let us consider them to be true and move on. I’ll set things in order in a while.

Remember when you hit the gym and were hardly able to lift 15 pounds? Then as you spent more time you were hitting wild reps of 50 pounds and more and more. Did you body actually get stronger here or was it just your mind removing the safety barrier? The brain meticulously sets up a safety limit and when you go beyond this, you get hurt, that is your neurons send pain signals. Consider boxing or the method used to strengthen your knuckles. Initially even a tiny punch will hurt but as you keep punching, your pain sensors dull down and you can punch with more force. Did you get stronger or did your brain remove the barrier that was preventing you from putting out more power, more force? Going by this logic, it wouldn’t  be surprising if people could lift cars when their mind temporarily shuts off, puts its priorities in an upheaval and unlocks everything.

I’ve already elaborated a bit on how every like or dislike is, how used to something we are, in some posts in my blog. So how about the view point that our brains are coded in such a way that we are cautious about every little thing and only when we do something over and over again, and incorporate it into our routine, only then does our brain sign it off as safe and gives it access to more power. Similarly, I can’t just wake up early if I wanted to. I have to condition my brain first.