17 August 2023

The Chao of Discordia: Four



1. The chao is a cornucopia. The more issues forth the more still remains. The chao is the source of all that is. 

2. Where there is a sharp edge it is rounded,

Where it is tangled it is unravelled,

Where it gives light it is dim,

Its nature enfolded,

Dark as ocean depths it endures

3. It has no progenitor,

The chao is older than gods.

31 July 2023

The Chao of Discordia: Three



1. If you seek not to excite rivalry among your fellows, treat all among them, wise and foolish, as equals, for they are. If you seek to avoid thieves, do not prize or promote material objects. To avoid greed and addiction and embrace a peaceful mind, ignore those things that promote greed and addiction.

2. A pope in the exercise of their power, empties their heart of the illusion of desire, fills their bellies, tempers their dreams, strengthens their core.

3. So the people can be innocent of the illusion, remind them of the illusion. For those who think they know better, remind them that they are preoccupied with an illusion and it would be foolish to act on such false preoccupation. By acting within one’s own reality tunnel without infringing on another’s, all may live in peace.

18 July 2023

The Chao of Discordia: Two


1. All people in the world know what makes them feel safe and in so doing they know what they believe will threaten that safety. When they know the beauty of the Eristic then they can conceive of the Aneristic

2. Perceived reality depends on duality:

Being or not-Being are created in our growth; difficult and easy are created according to our own process of discovery; Long and short exist only where the context requires that contrast. High and low are matters of our own perspective; the harmonics of tone and voice are a result of our own biological wiring; leading or trailing are based in an illusion of hierarchy.

3. Therefore a pope manages affairs without action; preaches doctrine without words

4. Shit happens and a pope understands that to be the case. They create but know they do not own the creation. They create but neither advertise nor claim their creation. For their action they claim no credit and for that reason the credit for those actions cannot be taken from them.


14 July 2023

New Partwork - The Chao of Discordia: One


1. The chao that can be understood is not the infinite chao. The chao that can be named chao is not the infinite chao.

2. The infinite chao is the originator of the Eristic and Aneristic. She who is named Eris is the mother of all things.

3. One may attempt to strip themselves of illusions to perceive an objective reality. But the illusions we create make up all the meaning in reality. So we can never truly perceive objective reality

4. Objective reality and our reality tunnel, for this reason, are pragmatically one and the same to each person. Aspects of objective reality are given different names as a person apprehends them. They can both be called a lens to view the infinite chao. To understand the lens is the key to harmony between yourself and the maelstrom of infinite chao

23 March 2023

____________ is hard...

Were I the kind of guy who took risks on having huge amounts of tat manufactured and then tried to sell the tat at profit I would totally have hundreds of miniature whiteboards made with "________ is hard" written on them. It's a genius parody of all those secret vision boards that shallow airheads pin pictures of lambos and mansions onto. We could just single out the thing that we're struggling with and write it in the space provided.

Your amateur "is hard"-er could start easy with "life". Almost always true from a subjective point of view, everyone's life literally is hard, from where they're sitting. The feeling that "Everything is fine" is only ever a transient moment, as the words in the ring remind us "This too shall pass". The feeling that our life is a vista of dark, forbidding woods, unsettled waters, and threatening, all-consuming tundra would appear to be our natural state of being, scanning for threats, mentally rehearsing worst-case scenarios.

However, to someone accustomed to our natural anxiety spelling out that "life is hard" is, therefore a tautology, unhelpful and banal. So, we might re-consider, attempt to trap one of our difficulties on our miniature whiteboard. Name the demon and thus entrap it within our cutesie-poo dry-wipe summoning board.

"Parenting" is something else we could say is hard. In fact, I often think that people often look with pity upon their fellows in the midst of a small human rearing exercise. There's been a current cultural movement to actively excuse people from being entirely on-point with regards housework etc. when they are attempting to usher the next generation into civilised society (which civilised society they have in mind is a tricky one to answer at this stage in history).

The thing is "sailing around the world alone on a yacht" is equitably hard, as parents and lone sailors evince a similar level of habitual bedragglement and mental wear and tear. The way we treat our intrepid maritime adventurers however is entirely different to the parents. Who cares if there's a small pile of clothes forgotten in the corner of a maritime adventurer's berth? These people are heroes! They have achieved! They must be celebrated!

The reasons for this are easily hidden in fallacies of common experience and perceived social good. Make no mistake if an experience makes you look and feel like someone who's just sailed their own course round Cape Horn then you probably are worthy of the same amount of kudos. So, yeah, don't let those others belittle your efforts "Parenting is hard" and you shouldn't let that get you down, you're doing a bang up job.

Of course, one of the reasons that parenting gets on the board is that being a parent inevitably means thinking of something other than what's best just for you right now. In fact, that's one of the challenges of being any kind of caregiver. So, just once in a while you might want to get hyper-specific and put "Updating my blog" on the whiteboard. Not because you don't have anything to say but just because you have been so busy and finding time to spew verbiage into the journal is a challenge that escapes your grasp.

So there you have it. A profound moment of homespun philosophy reduced to a snivelling, self-pitying shaggy dog story of an excuse. "Apologising for not updating the blog no one reads" would have to go on the whiteboard in really small letters which would probably indicate that you've skewed the specificity far to far into the particular zone. So, probably best to stop there.

11 November 2021

A Word on "Woke" and anti-"Woke" sentiment.

A minor news trickle today tells us that John Cleese has cancelled a planned talk at Cambridge University because he disagrees with the University's "woke rules" that led to them blacklisting another speaker who had previously performed an impersonation of Hitler. He's not wrong that people should not be unfairly blacklisted because they criticised something as close to objectively evil as it is possible to be through the medium of parody/satire.

However, in damning such actions as being "woke" Cleese has fallen into a pernicious trap that many people seem to be struggling with at the present time. What he objects to is the performative and arbitrary actions of people with a poor understanding of what is required to respect others. Essentially, performative virtue signaling.

The concept of being "woke" is completely different. It is, and should always remain, a term that means being conscious of systemic bias and abuse towards minorities embedded in culture. To be woke if you are part of those minorities is to be "on guard" against the inevitable inequities and injustices that will infect your life. If you are part of the privileged majority to be "woke" is to be aware of the systemic inequalities and to make reasonable efforts on a personal level not to be part of the problem.

It is an understandable confusion to conflate being woke with acting out performative virtue signaling. There is a conversation about how to assess another's actions in light of the blurry line between one and the other. But going round banging on about how woke is a terrible thing that is a blight on our society is exactly the kind of behaviour that contributes to the climate where woke is even a necessary concept.

Also, it allows people who are engaged in performative virtue signaling off the hook somewhat. 

Performative virtue signaling is carried out in bad faith, where as trying to be woke should always be good faith. As a sentient species we are, and I believe always have been, very bad at recognising bad-faith actors when their impact on our lives is at a certain level of abstraction.

If I have a pie and someone steals that pie I have no problem with that, I call them a thief and react to that kind of bad-faith action in the way I have systemically deemed appropriate. However, if I have a concept, an important concept, that if I accept its existence and relevance and attempt to act in the service of, and someone else undermines it by, essentially, being the living embodiment of reductio ad absurdam in regards to that concept I am at risk of losing sight of what that concept is all about in the first place.

I have to say that I don't believe that Mr. Cleese ever knew what woke was supposed to mean in the first place, and I don't think he's alone in that. I also think that the previous incarnation of woke, political correctness, suffered from many of the same problems, but also the fact that the concept inherently allowed latitude to bad-faith actors to allow them to muddy the concept. Political correctness even sounds like a bit of a weasel-concept.

This is why woke is, essentially, a much better concept. It says know your boundaries, mind your business, don't presume to know what someone else is going through and don't be naïve about the consensus reality of the world you live in. It parcels that all up in a neat concept, single word. It's a concept of deep and valuable nuance.

For which reason right-wing concept-jacking of the term to rob it of power is exactly the kind of thing that should be deplored and called out. It's a gift to such people that the range of effects of performative virtue-signaling is so broad from "silly and pointless" to "unfair and hurtful" to "actually quite damaging". It also helps a lot that no one's come up with a nuanced word that means "performative virtue-signaling".

It would have been cognitively uglier and harder for Mr Cleese to say: "I believe these rules are an act of performative virtue-signaling and I will not be associated with an organisation that seems to have such lax consideration for those they damage with such arbitrary rules and the real struggles of people whose lives are impacted by real systemic inequalities." It's not snappy, or glib, or quotable. However, it would have been kinder, more accurate and, well, more woke.

6 September 2021

Staring Yourself Out In The Third Eye

Here's a pro-tip if you like to maintain a blog.

Don't, under any circumstances, get into a state of mind where not updating a blog or journal becomes a sort of staring contest with yourself.

Especially don't do this if your intention is not to kill the blog stone dead. If your attitude toward your blog is that it's a nice place to come and drop some words that may, in the long run, prove to be wise or foolish, confusing or interesting but always challenging and, dare I say it, provocative. If you think: "that's a thing that exists that I believe, on balance, the world is better off for having in it" then maybe don't initiate a game where the aim or reward is to not post anything to that blog or journal.

It does occur to me that subconsciously this weird hiatus may have served a purpose, and honestly whatever the serf of consciousness apprehends is only what the lord and master of subconscious wants it to apprehend, which is not that much usually. That purpose is that when last I essayed upon this journal I was getting pretty downhearted, to be honest. I began to believe that I had lost touch with what I could post that would be of value to others. I have to be that vague, I can't say "to the world" because I am self-aware that my Discordian Mystic ramblings are not for everyone, and I can't say for "my people" because as true as that might be my people, currently, aren't here, that's the issue. Or if they are they are lurking in the shadows so effectively I may as well be alone.

You get to reading about the people who used to have long, rambling philosophical discussions from which are born great ideas and great thoughts and what not. That's where I'm at, that's what I want, not all the time, just in a part of time. When I get into a conversation about the whole what and all of it I want to find things in that space only available when two people are trying to connect mentally.

This here, is supposed to be a waffle against a sounding board. I am supposed to be challenged, given fresh perspectives, hounded, insulted, exalted, told I am right, told I am wrong, told I am spouting nonsense, told I am spouting wisdom. Those thus impacted are supposed to come forth and bring me their own waffle, their own view, chopped and presented the way I do here and I can be their sounding board as they were mine.

It's the philosophical utopia. I think, honestly, it's a space we could all do with that's become dominated with op-ed forums about hot-takes on issues that press hot-buttons. And it's just another means of manufacturing unhelpful, constrictive bullshit because the topics provoke knee-jerk reactions and without philosophising about less controversial topics you lack the skill to find a way into these difficult subjects.

Essentially, as a Discordian I am bound to have a take on the whole Leary/RAW "Reality Tunnels" thing, and my take is that it seems like a solid theory. So, we should embrace a chance to do a little work on our reality tunnels.

But exercising our reality-building powers only in the service of those wires that risk setting fire to the core, or causing a rational short-circuit, or shutting down key rational systems to reboot seems like a terrible way to tune. Surely, we should learn our craft attempting to improve less critical systems. We should learn how to work by working all over the tunnel, not just on the load-bearing pillars.

I don't see a lot of that shit going on, you know? Or, maybe a bit, often in other Discordian blogs, usually long since abandoned and not so much of entries like that either.

The other option is that looking too hard at things like our own personal belief structures, the general, non-controversial ones, and our own personal systems of rituals is super-hard because it risks breaking things where things seem to work. It's like spiritual technical debt, we've hacked the system together so mostly it operates "correctly" but there are just these few things that can happen that show up that the system just really isn't working as well as we believe, you know, under the hood.

Anyhow. My conclusion, on glancing through my last couple of entries is that I was on a more-or-less correct path. And the staring contest has given me distance to see that, if nothing else.

We need to move on now. And I need to be posting for people who may come through and may wish to access me through other means.

So, that's the plan. And I'm blinking now.

Always remember to blink it, or you'll get dust in your third eye.