Archive for August, 2017

Judaism, Fanaticism, Empire, And Self-Destruction

August 31, 2017

Our Civilization Is Not Just “Judeo-Christian”, Far From It, Yet All Too Many Think It Is:

Judaism contained the initial versions of Abrahamism. 2,000 years ago it gave birth to Christianism (in its many versions) and later Christianism was adopted as “Orthodox Catholicism” by Roman emperors as a metaphysical version of, and indomitable support for, their secular fascism.

Many scholars have argued that Christianism was the straw which broke the back of the Roman state. (Although it seems likely to me that Christianism gave an excuse to a much deeper rot, which, in turn, caused the altruism of Christianism.)

13 centuries ago, Meccan Arabs rejected their 365 gods polytheism around the goddess Moon, and adopted instead a hard-core desert version of Abrahamism, Islamism. Some go around, claiming that our civilization is “Judeo-Christian”, although neither Jews nor Christians invented the alphabet (Egypt, Sumer, Phoenicia did), nor basic mathematics (Egyptians, Greeks, Indians did), nor basic physics or engineering nor the idea of fairness embodied by the law (Babylonians did), nor basic state organization (Egypt, Sumer, Achaemenids), nor welfare (imperial Rome).

This cult of “Judeo-Christianism”, however mistaken, precisely because it’s so mistaken, has to be addressed.

Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, Largest (Herod’s) Version. Destroyed in 70 CE. King Solomon Built Part of It, A Millennium Earlier. Solomon was married to the daughter of Pharaoh. Only a 488 meters long retaining wall is left today, while Christians and Muslims built churches and mosques on top of the emplacement, in an apparent demonstration of whom owned what, the old fashion (jungle) way!

***

Paleologue O asks me in Aeon: “I would be interested to hear more about how the intolerance of the Jews led to the Judean Wars and their subsequent dispersal. What’s your thesis?”

Answer: More exactly it was the intolerance of some Jewish faction leaders, especially Simon bar Giora. Although the revolt started in part for tax reason, Simon instigated the war, if I remember well, with the surprise massacre of more than 600 Roman legionaries.

Simon was captured alive, although he fought to the bitter end. He was brought to Rome and executed by very public whipping (the leader of the Zealots, John of Gischala was condemned to life imprisonment). The first approach to the period is to read the (huge) entire work of the historian Josephus, adoptive son of emperor Vespasian. Josephus had been elected general by the Jewish People, but, after much valorous fighting, was besieged and had to surrender to (then) general Vespasian and his son, general Titus.

In general, the attitude of the Jews made little sense, except if one believed, as many Jews did, that they had a deal with god. Under Rome, the Jews could practice their religion, and even apply some of their most abusive theocratic laws: witness Saint Paul, a Jew named Saul who committed the (fatal) sin of having visited the Jewish temple in Jerusalem with a bodyguard who was not a Jew.

Saul had persecuted the Christians (supposedly) before becoming one himself. Saul’s work on behalf of the Gentiles infuriated Jewish theocrats.

So Saul was condemned to death, and arrested by the authorities. He was imprisoned 2 years by the Roman governor of Judea. As Saul was also an important Roman citizen (a prosecutor), he successfully asked to be judged in Rome, and not by the order of the High Jewish Priests, the Sanhedrin. Paul disappeared in Rome around 67 CE or 68 CE (executed by order of the evil Jews, said some Christians, or the evil Nero, said others, if he was not exfiltrated to Spain say still others…)

Meanwhile, by 66 CE, fanatical Jewish factions, the “Zealots” and “Sicari” took control of Jerusalem (full of hatred for each others, not just the Greco-Romans). When other Jews tried to flee the city they were crucified (with as many as 500 crucifixions in one day!)

In general, Abrahamism stinks, as the founding legend, Abraham, was ready to execute his son, just because his boss asked him to. (Imagine Google, aka God ask you to kill someone dearest to you?) Whereas I say that when a God asks for the death of one’s child, or any child, He should be told: F U! That’s a question of basic morality. If a god doesn’t deserve respect, it should get it.

One can compare how Celts, Punics and Jews reacted to the rise of civilization (in its Greco-Roman version). The former two laid low superstitiously speaking: they stopped pretending that they had better metaphysics than the Roman Republic (the Saxons would do the same after being beaten into submission by Charlemagne for 30 years).

After the Romans defeated (some of) them, Celts and Punics condemned their own religions, they said OK to Rome, and they helped build a constructive empire (defeated “Gaul” was the most important and powerful province of Rome after the First Century, and the relationship of Italy and Gaul got inverted, pacifically; soon enough, Carthage was again one of the Greco-Roman empire’s greatest cities).

Whereas some Jewish factions in Jerusalem opted to resist fanatically and murderously the Greco-Roman empire. Not all Jews did so, thus Judaism survived the eradication of the fanatics (differently from the Samaritans who fought as one, later, so only 3,000 are left, now…) Those vicious factions were based in Jerusalem, but not present among the dozens of thousands of Jews in Alexandria. After the second Jewish war, in 132-135 CE, the Jews were dispersed out of Israel, rebaptized “Palestina” on the occasion, so here we are…

***

Paleologue replied: “Thanks for the Cliff Notes version. I hadn’t realized they’d started off by killing 600 Roman soldiers. A fatal tactical blunder. Obviously the Zealots didn’t have a proper diplomatic corps, to put their case in more reasonable terms. Had they followed the advice of some in-house Gandhi figure, to suggest the non-violent way, they might have met with greater success. (They certainly couldn’t have done any worse.)

I do have a nice copy of Josephus sitting around. But it’s so heavy I have so far put off reading it. I do have kind of a long reading list already. Maybe I should bump it up a hundred places.”

Not just that, but an entire Roman legion, Legio XII Fulminata, was sent to re-establish order, and then, after evacuating Jerusalem, fell into an ambush. This time more than 6,000 Roman soldiers died, shocking the entire empire.

Reading Josephus is a must. One of the greatest classics ever, which even the crazed-out Christian monks found valuable enough to save. The Zealots, Sicari and others were into hatred and killing (as they showed by killing each other). Being out there to kill humans en masse is one of the most instinctive, if not the most sacred, mass behavior of humans. Because, without it, humanity would not exist anymore than it would, without love. Yeah, right, it’s crazy. But even more crazy to ignore it.

***

One thing is clear to me; those who claim to love Judaism should decrease their fanaticism, and tribal exaltation:

(Besides, it’s hypocritical as the inertness of American Jews demonstrated, when confronting Nazism: it’s the French Republic, which is not Jewish, but laic, which stood in the way of Nazism, not the Jews; as Hannah Arendt and Simone Weil pointed out, making lots of PC enemies in the process… Life among intellectuals would be devoid of spice without PC, Perfect Cretins…)

In particular, genital mutilation, a hallmark of Jews shouldn’t not have to be tolerated when visited on males more than it should be when visited on females. (Yes, there are good arguments for both; but good arguments can be found for anything, whatsoever, if one changes one’s parameters to crazy enough…)

Jewish fanaticism backfired many times in history. (Christian fanaticism was, mostly, done away with, and mostly an imperial tool, anyway; but Christians never claimed to have been given a piece of land by their own private god… Only the all too secular Charlemagne gave land to the Pope…)

Now the Jews claim they own the land of Israel. They have a good historical case, but moderation is key. Punics, Celts, the Franks, and all sorts of Germans and the Saxons saw the light, when confronted to higher civilization, and, after fighting it, learned the mistakes of their ways, and embraced it. (By 950 CE, the Saxons had become the pillar of the Franco-Roman empire, while Western Francia disintegrated in 63 political authorities…) 

The problem with, and the force of, Judaism is tribalism. Tribalism without a higher cause is just racism. Some will say the god of the tribe is enough of a higher cause. Not so. The tribal god himself needs a higher, universal cause: this is why Catholicism became universal (Catholic means universal). This is also why Islamism became universal (it has universal pretense, although it’s to call for the killing all sorts of people)

Now, pleasing the empire is more important than ever. Because the empire, and its enemies, have never been more powerful. A mistake or two, and billions of people could end up dead.

Thus those who cultivate tribalism and exclusion, as if they were delicate flowers of the greatest value, tickle the dragon. The thermonuclear dragon. Let us remind them their gods are of the highest immorality.

Patrice Ayme’

Increasing Greenhouse Means Increasing Floods, Droughts

August 28, 2017

Among other dynamic activities… As I long predicted, a decade ago, on theoretical grounds, namely the Equipartition of Energy theorem.

Part of Texas was struck by a spectacular hurricane and tropical storm, Harvey, which dumped, and is dumping, an unheard of quantity of rain. That was to be expected, it’s a long foreseen effect of the increasing greenhouse. It is even suspected that, hundreds of millions of years ago, when a greater greenhouse than now ruled, and there was just one major supercontinent, enormous weather systems, of a power unimaginable today, occasionally flooded the otherwise dry interior.

The US President Trump used to complain about CO2, when he was funding and  supporting the so-called “Democrats”, less than ten years ago. To be elected, he engaged in a masquerade denying the shattering potential of a brutal augmentation of the greenhouse. Now he is rising to the occasion, a modern Noah, engineer of his own destiny.

Flood in the Atacama Desert, Northern Chili in 2012. Atacama is the world’s driest desert.

Increasing greenhouse means increasing floods, and not just in the Atacama… Just as it means increasing droughts. The fundamental reason is the increasing temperature: warmer air carries more water molecules. Basically temperature is agitation, and greater agitation keeps more molecules aloft.

Similarly, greater temperatures means greater agitation of water molecules of water in the soil, which then escapes, thus dryer soil, ultimately.

Contradictory effect can emerge, from the same causes. An example: increased floods and droughts, from the same increasing greenhouse.

This has long been well-known in a great desert such as the Sahara.

It’s instructive that a state such as Texas, which produced so much fossil fuels over the last century was struck hard. But so will be the USA, overall: many of the great US cities are threatened by flooding, as sea level will rise.

Somebody just told me: it won’t be tomorrow, that the greenhouse bites. But, in Houston, tomorrow is today, as the city turns into a lake. What people may not understand that much of the greenhouse warming is spent on melting the poles. In particular, the giant frozen expenses of the north. Once all those will be melted, temperatures and storms will shoot up. Why? Because, first, melting ice requires a huge amount of energy. Once the ice is melted, all the heat will go towards other effects. Secondly, the ice creates a strong albedo, the reflectivity of the Earth. Once that’s gone, the soil and water expanses will be capable of much greater warming, as the Sun’s energy will dive deep down inside…  

Patrice Ayme’

Doctor Ordered: Roman Baths Alive Again

August 24, 2017

Roman baths were one the most striking features of Roman civilization. After the Roman state collapsed, so did the baths, bathing, and the will to bathe. This was partly due to the destruction of the Roman hydraulic system. But it was also due to Christianism, an artificial ideology, antinomic to humanity, which the Roman emperors imposed to turn We the People into We The Sheeple. It’s high time to become reunited to elements of Middle Earth Civilization, neglected ever since Christian derangement syndrome took over.

ASICS & The Dirt On Christianism:

Early Christians tended to cultivate dirt and inaction. Individuals, male or female, achieved sainthood, just because they stayed on top of a column, for years, or just because they never washed, nor washed their clothes, nor changed increasingly dirty clothing: they just waited for dirt to flake off. Not interfering with the will of god was viewed as a high achievement.

(Part of) Grand Bains in front, proud successor of their 2,500 year old Allobroge and then Roman predecessors. Two 1,000 year old churches behind. Roman Tradition & Divine Aspirations United in a multi-millennial embrace, in the middle of the Alps. In 2017, the French government minds the ecology fiercely, in its own special way, by assassinating wolves around this village, in full tourist season, and planning dams… (In complete and direct violation of European law protecting wolves, an endangered species, thus demonstrating that, when the French government favors plutocrats, under the pretext of European law, it’s because it wants to…)

Christianism despised the world, and, in particular, the human body. What is despicable shouldn’t rule! Thus Christianism made despising We The People, into a religion, debasing the masses into submission! Taking care, either of the world, or the human body, was to be condemned, such was the mood of early imperial Christianism. That was the reason of being of imperial Christianism.

Once the Christians took over the small emirate of Granada, they closed the 3,000 public baths of this Muslim enclave. (I hope foaming at the mouth Jihadists read this before attacking modern baths; knowing history has not been their forte).

Christianism’s mood of submitting to fate, by rejecting the existence of the real world, was the  exact opposite of the mood of the Roman Republic. And that was exactly Christianity’s main point: submit to fate in general, and the emperor in particular. Such is the will of god.

An important aspect of Roman mentality, ASICS: Anima Sana In Corpore Sano, a healthy soul in a healthy body, was particularly repugnant to Christian fanatics. (A variant from Juvenal’s “Mens sana, in corpore sano…”) After the collapse of the Roman State, Christians would spend much efforts, in the following millennium, trying to close baths, until public hygiene became abysmal.

***

The Christian anti-ASICS mood was also a completely degenerate mindset:

De-generate: what generates not, what undoes generation. What generate human beings in full was ASICS.

A portion of the exterior part of Monêtier-les-Bains Baths. Glaciers in the background High Alps are melting at a torrid pace. Entire glaciers are now fields of stones, after two decades of melting… I have computed that elevating the melt zone by 100 meters is roughly equivalent to shrinking the permafrost zone 100 kilometers to the north (or south…)

The destruction of the baths was actually progressive: early “Christian” civilization was not that “Christian”, and resisted Christianism for many centuries (Charlemagne was very Christian when Christianism was useful to conquer the Saxons and persuade them they were of an inferior moral sort, and intellectual primitives; however, in his personal life, and in his pushing of secular education and private fuming about the Pope, Charlemagne was not at all Christian, or then just Christian in a noble form…) It took many centuries for full Christian hatred of body, mind, health and world to take over. By then, even inside the “Church”, entire traditions of resistance to that sort of Christianization had risen. “Men in Black”, a sort of fanatical monks, destroyed books and libraries and intellectuals by 400 CE, but soon other monks were secretly saving around 93% of the texts of Antiquity which got preserved.

The hot, mineral laden baths have great curative properties, known probably already to Neanderthals (people used to have lots of skin disease). The destruction of bathing and basic hygiene in the Late Middle Ages, due to mass Christianization, brought massive epidemics. Proof? The nobility was often unaffected, because they bathed, and lived according to un-Christian morality, as Nietzsche, following Sade, forcefully pointed out…

Those texts were rediscovered in monasteries by the Late Middle Ages, including many by the secretary of several Popes, who detected the one and only copy of Lucretius’ De Natura Rerum, Of the Nature of Things, the only compendium of Greco-Roman science we have. Indeed the story of the Catholic Church was immensely complicated.  

***

Experiencing The Baths:

The Roman baths had many traditional sub-elements, such as the Tepidarium (tepid), the Frigidarium (frigid), the Calorarium (caliente! very hot). Going from the frigid bath to the super hot bath is really to be experienced: there is a variant where one walks through an even colder leg bath, before going back to warm water. One can feel nerves twinkle…

The high Alpine village of Monêtier-les-Bains has had baths, from natural hot water springs, for more than two thousand years. The Romans knew it well: the valley in which Monêtier-les-Bains sits had a major Roman road going through 150 miles of massive mountainous landscape, complete with passes above timberline and enormous canyons (in the flanks of which the Romans dug their roads, and their mines).  

One becomes more fully human by experiencing more and more significantly, as long as it’s rather innocuous. Experiencing the games one’s neurology plays from just changes in water, or air, temperature or the impact of powerful jets is instructive.

Les Grands Bains du Monêtier are strangely addictive. Maybe that’s the wrong adjective: why should it be strange to feel fully human? The Romans didn’t think so. But the Christians did, and that’s why Christianism put civilization in full reverse in crucial ways, and why it had to be wiped out as a ruling cult. Ruling out Christianism is what the Enlightenment did, but it took a while: teaching the theory of evolution was forbidden in English universities for most of the Nineteenth Century (although it was allowed, in Scotland, to teach the evolutionary theories of the French research professors of the Museum d’Histoire Naturelle in Paris: Buffon, Lamarck, Cuvier, etc…).

I am not the only one so addicted to Les Grands Bains: although the price is above 24 dollars for the shortest visit (including going through change of clothing, shower, etc.), I had to share the baths with at least one hundred other happy souls. However, the baths are very large, so it didn’t feel crowded. Although not as large by a very long shot, than the largest baths in the Roman empire, such as Caracalla’s Baths, the present baths have absolutely mesmerizing pools, such as the one where one can enjoy underwater music, while contemplating lighted wave patterns, made by underwater lights, on the domed ceiling, far above.

***

A whiff of pre-Christian religions, the religion of the baths, among others, is exactly what the doctor ordered, because it is a return to human sense, as evolved over millions of years, before the Abrahamism madness which devastated civilization, when the Middle Earth civilization nearly collapsed from a conjunction of factors where theocratic fanaticism, and rejection of reality, played an important part.

Right, it all originated from too few men having too much money, and then, power.

Nowadays, the stakes are higher: mad, yet powerful cretins play with, and brandish, thermonuclear bombs, and can throw them to the other side of the Earth. Ignore them to one’s own, and goodness’ peril. Antidote? Everyday I walk and take a long hot bath, reading in either case…

Patrice Ayme’

 

Islam, An Ideology of Murder Respected by Degenerates

August 18, 2017

Two attacks and one explosion in Catalonia last night, with deaths in Barcelona, Cambril, and Alcanar. There are at least 19 dead, and more than one hundred injured (including 17 French citizens in “urgence absolue”, that is extreme critical care). The attacks were claimed by the Islamist State. Apparently they were Moroccans. The next day, it was the turn of Finland.

A 18 year old “asylum seeking” Moroccan attempted to, and killed women. At least two Finnish women died, half a dozen others were stabbed. A few days later, it was the turn of Marseille, France, where a truck driver wounded and killed a number of people at bus stops. The cause of all this murdering, attempted and realized? The mythology of Fundamental Islam, or, more precisely, the respect it has enjoyed all too long, among civilized people.

Much could have been killed in Catalonia, if not for a single Catalan police woman who shot to death no less than FOUR drugged out Jihadists. In France the number of radicalized, dangerous known Jihadists, went from 13,000 to 18,500 (latest number, August 2017).

My nephew has close “Muslim” friends. At my urging, over the years, he recently read some of the Qur’an. He told me that the first impression is that “le Coran a été écrit par un fou” (the Qur’an was written by a madman).

Here we have a book which wants to “throw people into the fire”, every other page (the Bible does this more rarely).

As Surah 4, verse 56 has it, and this is the Muslim God allegedly speaking:

“Indeed, those who disbelieve in Our verses – We will drive them into a Fire. Every time their skins are roasted through We will replace them with other skins so they may taste the punishment. Indeed, Allah is ever Exalted in Might and Wise.”

Well, F your verses, Mr. God! Hopefully, we will grow thick enough a skin, one of these days. Western politicians go around, wondering how come so many Muslims get “radicalized”. Maybe they don’t how to read? “Radical” means from the root. Here we show some of the roots of Islam, they are vicious, by normal, decent, human standards.

The Qur’an is not just full of lethal threats, but also of rather funny insults.

So you want to end “terrorism”? End the literal preaching of this kind of hateful, lethal garbage.

And, especially stop telling us that throwing a critical look at this sort of lethal garbage is “racist”. Because all you will do, in the end, is to tell normal people that they are “racist” (the sort of reaction which brought the election of Trump, let alone the rule of plutocratic fascist rule which preceded it).

In Tunisia, a woman inherits only half of what a man inherits, and a Tunisian woman can’t marry a non-Muslim. And supposedly Tunisia is NOT an Islamist Republic. The 90-year-old Tunisian president want to change this anti-equality laws, but he is isolated, hated by the Jihadists, young and furious. Change requires physical courage. The chief of Islam in Tunisia came forward to support the president: no doubt he is high on the Jihadists’ list.

The “antifa” rage at the KKK and Neonazis, who are nowhere in power. Why don’t the “antifa” not rage at theocratic fascism? Instead some of the loudest of the opposition to Trump is theocratic fascist. Consider Linda Sarsour, who called for a “Jihad” against Trump.

Why did most “Western” “intellectuals” embrace (the respect of) Islam?

Because they were trying to please those who have the oil. Hint: not just the Saudis. We are enjoying the “Great Bitter Lake” conspiracy.   The Justice System followed: it gave right of asylum to Jihad criminals condemned to death in their own countries. That was confusing fascists and victims: laws which were made to accept genuine victims of fascism were turned into laws to protect the fascists themselves!

To fight Islam, in its fundamental version, one needs first to withdraw the respect it enjoys.

Withdrawing respect can, and should be, withdrawn to many infamous ideologies. This is the first step in fighting them. Know them, and then, when you know them well, and because you know them well, spite them.

Patrice Ayme’

 

 

HUMANISM: When TOP PREDATORS NEED LOVE

August 12, 2017

 

Yes, human beings, those top predators, need love. They do. But love is not all they need: there is no contradiction whatsoever, between being a predator and being loving. Lots of predators are loving. It’s actually the exact opposite: love generate the Dark Side. Humans can’t exist without love. But humans, even on their very best behavior, are not all about love, this is what traditional humanism thoroughly missed (although Caesar, Machiavel, Hobbes, Sade wrote a bit about the subject; Christianism acknowledges the Dark Side, just to excoriate it).

***

WE, HUMANS, DON’T JUST PREDATE, WE ARE PREDATORS. Why and What.

We, humans, are actually the top predators. We are greater predators than any other predators which ever existed. This is a simple fact, which changes all of the past’s wishful thinking. Predation defines us. Predation, received and inflicted, made us human, in the last five million years. This changes everything. 

We are also the most intelligent animals. Predation and intelligence are related.

We evolved by, for, from, predation. Predation provided hominids with high nutritional content, lots of concentrated energy. Eating meat THEN enabled to grow big brains. Such is the philosophical order of things, and it rules neurology. This is not a fancy elucubration: we have the fossils to prove it.

For millions of years, hominids learned to stand up, and evolved the genetics to roam around on two legs. At the time, hominids grabbed meat here and there, a task which probably involved quite a bit of scary scavenging. That tended to modify jaws and teeth, while hominids became ever more carnivorous. Finally the brains grew, and grew and grew, fueled by ever more meat, the most energy rich power source around.

The chronology of hominid fossils reveals the causal relationships. And it may well be a universal law valid in exoplanets: carnivores may well be, all over the galaxy, the brainiest. Most brainiest animals on Earth are carnivorous (with the exception of elephants and parrots; in particular all great apes are dedicated carnivores, even gorillas and Orangutans.) It takes a brainiac to catch fishes, as Humpback Whales and many species of dolphins, all the way to Killer Whales, testify… 

Some want to forget our creator, millions of years of predatory evolution. Call that basic denial of one’s own reality!    

Homo Ergaster, the most primitive type of Homo Erectus known (2017). From Georgia, 1.8 million years ago. Five Homo Ergaster corpses were found in underground dens of saber tooth felids, were they were dragged to be consumed. Humans are the realistic animals, realism having been learned one grisly lesson at a time! Humans could only think at the time, that the predation problem had to be mitigated. We have the opposite problem!

***

By destroying predators, we have been trying to dispose of the concept of predator, in a sort of final solution to our own nature, hell-bent to destroy and devastate the concept of humanity. A final solution exterminating what we are. How can that be? Why to self-destroy? Because denying our nature, to the point of not living according to it, profits the Elite, the Oligarchy, those among us who predate and think, and feel, accordingly.

How is this at all possible? Precisely from the spirit of predation. Human predation controls itself. It has evolved to do so, the survival of the species depended upon it. It’s its own meta feedback. Thus humanity instinctively devours humanity (and, historically, literally so!)

Hence when North Korea Kim, Japan Hirohito, Germany Adolf Hitler, engaged in confrontations they could only lose, they obey, modern weapons in hand, the oldest instinct: destroying humanity, lest there is too much of it, literally, or figuratively! This is why “reason” in a smaller context, can’t have any grip on them: their call is much greater than that! Asking them to not destroy, is asking them, not to do what motivates them, deep inside.

Human beings have been at the very top of the predation order, for millions of years. As early as Homo Habilis. That’s how humans survived in plains, steppe, desert and savannah, far from the trees. There was no refuge, except for the respect, not to say the terror, and certainly the worry, that human beings inflicted upon other beasts.

Masai children, ten-year old, can walk among the ferocious beasts, because the ferocious beasts fear human beings. I experienced and practiced the same, a little bit, at the same age, in Africa. Seeing an enormous lion communicate respect, as one respects back, is awe-inspiring. Then one knows intelligence rules, not just humans, but the beasts, the universe.

By rejecting the concept of predator and predation, thus, ourselves, recent “civilization” has been trying to reject our souls and our reality. Fanatical Pacifists will say:”Very well! High time! We have progressed! Alleluia” As if rejecting reality massively was progressive.

No, indeed. Fanatical Pacifists have not understood the most important thing: with their obsessive pacifism, they made themselves into ectoplasms lower than even sheep.

Pacifists, those admirable souls? Lower than sheep? Yes, indeed. Because, indeed, sheep themselves have a dignity, a courage, moral standards, and stand for themselves. Because indeed sheep, as a result, are not that pacific. In general, herbivores can be rather aggressive: horns and the like are not there by accident (I have had wild sheep, Ibex, pushing stones on me and others, from up high, deliberately, many times; But for a helmet, once, my spouse would have been killed, by an Ibex sent stone; also once a gigantic sheep, approaching me with a stupid, benign, absent-minded look on its face, then proceeded to push the unsuspecting me off the mountain with its sheer mass…Ever since I have known sheep can be Machiavellian).

Large predators should be reintroduced  everywhere outside of cities, and a few parks. Even in Europe. Large predators, by the way, are not the potentially most lethal: herbivores can be more of a problem. Elephants are the most dangerous beasts in Africa, followed by buffaloes (I was charged once by a cow). The key with elephants is to go up wind, and stay as far away as possible from the irascible, vengeful pachyderms with their enormously resentful large brains. All Maasai children know this.

Let’s reintroduce the entire megafauna, de-extincting species as needed (using latest genetics). Yes, megafauna will be frightening. That’s not a defect, but an advantage. Yes, it will mean we have to learn to instill respect, and make ourselves, respectful for the laws of nature, and the laws of the jungle.

By reintroducing megafauna, we will not just recover ecological balance for the planet, but mental balance, for ourselves.  

Be all we can be, and evolution meant us to be.

In particular, stop looking up at few other individuals, our leaders, as if they were gods, as if it were natural that they be our masters, with enormous powers when we have very little. No, they are not our leaders, we humans, the top predators are not meant to be led. Let’s learn that about ourselves.

Having leaders with their fingers on thermonuclear fire, fed and promoted by bankers, is not natural. Having leaders, except in a baboon troop sized organization, is not natural. It’s not a natural form of human organization. It’s not a natural form of ecology. We have organized an unnatural order of things, and conditioned ourselves to expect, and respect it. Thus the biosphere is going down the drain. Unimaginable wars are getting prepared: watch a few dictators’ antics (Venezuela’s Maduro, and the thoroughly hell-bent North Korean Kim, who affects to believe there are enough rabid pacifists around to make his thermonuclear blackmail, real cool and effective, an awe-inspiring key to a great future!)

Time to rebel. Time to rebel against an order which has imposed on us, chains and masters, because this order of  thoughts and… orders is rushing to catastrophe. Time to recover, to rebuild, a planetary environment which makes sense, and thus gives us sense, far from Absurdism. This the only planetary engineering worth having.

We are made to experience the megafauna, to be ourselves, in full. We can’t fully mentally function without that spur of evil intelligence, potentially observing and evaluating us. In particular, the laws of the jungle teach us the ever-present importance of truth, and realism.  Yet, remember: predation, received and inflicted, made us human, in the last five million years. When looking at human society, think:’This is what top predators organized.’ And how come we let it be? Are we what we are supposed to be?

How could we fix the world, the world we are destroying, if we are not fully ourselves? And how could we be ourselves if nature’s awe can’t educate and inspire us? Let’s reintroduce an environment which inspires us and teaches us respects for the laws of nature. Being able to experience living with megafauna is central to that.

Patrice Ayme’

 

Those Who Don’t Meditate Don’t Creatively Think

August 8, 2017

 

Thus meditation is at the core what it means to be human, let alone civilized.

This being said, there are many ways of meditating. Many  more ways than is usually considered, or believed.

The root of the word meditate, is the Proto Indo-European “med”: “taking appropriate measures”. Hence the Romans “meditari”, to reflect, consider, think it over.

The basic argument of some meditators is that they can put their mind in a different state, and logically and emotionally approach things anew. Calm and rest, slowing the heartbeat can do this. Right. It’s most appropriate, especially to hot heads. Those who tend towards road rage, ill-considered relationships, depression for shallow reason(s), drug, tobacco and THC addiction, abusing others, etc.

However, for more perfect, PC types, slowing one’s already supine mind will not bring mental perspective. The problem is the exact opposite to that of hot heads. The average, rather sedate and conformist Commons need to put their minds in different state(s) to reach greater perspectives, hence higher wisdom, through excitement, not anesthesia.

Hence violence and passion can lead to higher wisdom. Yes, they won’t slow down the heartbeat: that’s precisely the point. Indeed the human brain needs oxygen, nutrients, blood flow: the brain uses between 20%, 25% and 43% of a human oxygen… To try to change the brain by starving the brain of blood flow sounds more akin to hanging by the neck, than of conditions conducive to creative thinking.

Extreme situations can provide with extremely different perspectives, which, well interpreted, can provide with extreme wisdom as nothing else can.

For example, thinking about the same subject under very heavy exertion gives very different approaches and results than doing it half asleep in one’s bed as Leonardo Da Vinci, and quite a few other mathematicians or physicists have recommended to.

One can be swimming in the sea, and watch a giant shark pass by, and this will put oneself in a very different mental state. Irreversibly, most probably. I was personally caught in a giant rock avalanche, the largest rock avalanche I have ever seen, even on TV, and miraculously survived (meaning I won’t believe the story if someone told it to me). That changed me very deeply (not just the avalanche itself, but the near impossible survival)   

Actually, putting one in a completely different meditative state is the main advantage of extreme sports, and why they capture their practitioners so well. (Contemplate me!)

Enthusiasts sitting in a room, with high ceilings and a gong, can talk about approaching meditation through measured breathing all they want. Diving so deep in the sea, with just one’s lungs, so deep only the sandy bottom of the sea shines, FORCES one to master one’s breathing (and heart, and peripheral body, and brain). Meditate, or die. What could be more motivating, more thorough?

A human brain is a marvellous thing. Pain is generally experienced only when it’s profitable to do so, in light of the overwhelming necessity of survival of self, or significant other(s). The French solo sailor Alain Colas once calmly operated his giant sailboat with a nearly sectioned foot. He didn’t experience disabling pain (until he was in a safe situation). I experienced several torn tendons and two fractures on May 11. After the event, I calmly jerked back a finger which was out of its articulation. I learned that in B movies, but it worked. Then I started running again, as rescue was distinctly not on the mountain. I knew the pain was manageable if I got into action answering the situation. I did the same (on the same mountain!) when I was stung by more than 40 wasps.

The best, or at least the deepest, way to be reminded how powerful, and correct, the human mind can be, is to go extreme. Sitting in a lotus position without moving a neuron, won’t do it. Confronting the world will. It will not necessarily make you look, or sound, nice. But it will make you wise and good deep down inside.

Generally nastiness comes from sectarianism, and that, in turn, provides with comforts which, wisdom shows, should be denied.

Patrice Ayme’

Humanism Versus Buddhism

August 7, 2017

The very fact that there is a distinction to be made between, “Humanism” and “Buddhism” tells volumes. No ideology with pretensions to goodness should stand distinct from humanism. Because that means, contradicting human ethology. And Buddhism contradicts human ethology, big time. Arguably, it’s way worse than Abrahamism: even the disguised cannibalism of Abrahamism is more naturally anchored in human nature.

What’s the problem in not been occurred in human nature? Well, the more so, arguably, the more of a superstition: standing (“stare”) above (“super”) reality.

Another problem with Buddhism is that it was instigated by a Prince, Gautama Buddha. I am not a Prince, nor do I know any, but I suspect that any Prince would be partial to making the Commons into sheep. So that they can be directed where the shepherds of men when men to be led (to slaughter, or, at the very least, to be shorn and milked, as needed). The fact is, Buddhism instills passivity: passivity is perfect for Princes. Passivity is not a good propellant for evolution. Individuals are created as children, it’s very hard for them to quit their mental geometry later.

The next problem with Buddhism, as with Islamism and Christianism, is that there are many variants of this superstition. In particular, they are more or less superstitious. Tibetan Buddhism, which is extremely superstitious, is pretty far from Zen Buddhism, which is pretty secular. 

Tibetan Buddhists believe that if they rotate around unclimbed Mount Kailash, good things will happen. The PRC gave famed alpinist Reinhold Messner the authorization to climb it, but he declined… Good boy.

Variants of Buddhism are just as far from each other as Wahhabism/Salafism is far from Sufism (the latter having itself drastically different variants). The Mahāyāna (“Great Vehicle) Buddhism is the largest major tradition of Buddhism existing today, with 53.2% of practitioners, compared to 35.8% for Theravada and 5.7% for Vajrayana. The Great Vehicle is more altruistic: it may have been Christianized (personal opinion), as Christian missions reached Sri Lanka as early as the Third Century, and India by the 100s, Common era (just when Mahāyāna surfaced). (I have lots of idiosyncratic opinions…)

Just to give an example, Tibetan Buddhism comprises four lineages. Temperaments can run high: top associates of the Dalai Lama killed each other for reasons of great theological import, in the obscure spiritual caves they roam.  (Interestingly, I made a Google Search of this fact I know to be true; however, Google informed me that, under European Privacy Law, this search was omitted:I’m now in Europe…It took me a huge amount of time to find the link above, and I had to be crafty. This shows European law to be friendly to the Elite, AKA plutocracy…)  

The fundamental problem with Buddhism is its very secular foundation. The deepest intuition of Buddhism, that pain has to be avoided, at the cost of perception. It is as inhuman as it gets.

Some may object to this description. And the objection may be valid, depending upon the variant of Buddhism considered. Some Buddhists will say:”Pain has to be avoided, at the cost of most human emotion”. That’s still inhuman.

Why? The brain thinks, not just with strict implications, but also with emotions. This is even true at the level of pure logic. Emotions can’t be avoided, even if one restricts oneself to logic itself.

Even the parodic character in Star Trek, Mr. Spock, depends very heavily on emotions: after all, one has to have FAITH in the axioms of logic. Besides logics can be anything, by changing the axioms. One choses axioms of logic from emotion, not logic. Logic does not select logic. Logic is; volition, volition from emotion, does the rest.

Emotional computers are coming, make no mistake. Serious Quantum Computers will be emotional… (Yes, I know, that could be a problem…)

By then, when it becomes obvious that, for achieving true Artificial Intelligence, one needs emotions, Buddhism will suffer an irretrievable blow.

Many Buddhists say:”Wait, meditation is good, it changes the brain”. Right. No need to be a Buddhist to meditate, though. I meditate several hours a day, I am a meditation machine, but I usually never mention it, it’s a s natural to me as breathing, and I know the of the impudence of telling other people to “meditate”, as if they were such fools that they never meditate. Basically, if one never meditates, one is just a mechanical parrot. Because one has no indigenous thinking.

Moreover, to deflate further the Buddhist bandwagon, Buddhist meditation is only one type of meditation. However admirable. There are other types of meditation, fully incompatible with Buddhist meditation, and which give excellent results Buddhism can’t get at. An example is Taoist meditation.

Make no mistake: I welcome individuals with dubious behavior to engage in so-called secular Buddhism, if they didn’t gather such a level of wisdom yet, that they still insist to engage in road rage, drug abuse, drinking alcohol, smoking tobacco or THC, insulting their friends thoughtlessly, betraying their loving ones, clutching guns, potentially lethal behaviors, abusing the innocent, in being self-destructive, or in total incapacity to meditate in any way, etc.

I will just say that philosophy, full force, is vastly superior to Buddhism and other isms. Philosophy itself has its own isms, many of them. To quote a few: Stoicism, Cynicism, Existentialism, Marxism, Nominalism, Epicureanism, Positivism, Platonism, Neo-Platonism, Hedonism, Realism, Pragmatism, Materialism, etc.

Allright, the Politically Correct pseudo-left which rules, or, more exactly, ruins the West loves the Dalai Lama certainly the most famous incarnation of Buddhism known worldwide. I am cool with some of what Dalai says, but I have been known to agree even with Lamas in the high Andes. However, my harsh criticism of Buddhism, and other eastern religions (I barely got started here) was pleased to see that, last time my friend Obama received the DL at the White House, His Holiness had to skirt the garbage of the backside…

However interesting the debate, “Secular Buddhism” is pretty much an oxymoron. The mood of passivity Buddhism and its derivatives generated made East Asia fall behind West Asia (Europe). Now, of course, Buddhism and its derivatives or antecedents (Confucianism) has been wiped out as a leading mood, in places such as Japan, Korea, China and Vietnam. It has been replaced by the mood which enabled Western Europe to forcefully industrialize in the Nineteenth Century (If Czar Peter The Great read this, he would be outraged and point out that, three centuries ago, he did exactly what Mao, Chou En Lai and Deng Tsiao Ping did, in the last few decades… Right, I present my excuses…) The point is that PROGRESSIVISM is not compatible with Buddhism. All leaders in the East have concluded it’s not, and they have chosen the philosophical path forged by Europe (and now idiotically second-guessed there!)

Too many superstitious religions around, for this small planet. Respecting them, amounts to procreating them. We need hard-core secularism, and the religion of the planetary Republic.

Patrice Ayme’

Lessons From Sparta, Thebes, Athens, Macedonia, Rome, Greece, Franks, On How To Beat the Dark Side (In North Korea)

August 6, 2017

Countless intellectuals, for example Salman Rushdie, hold that the those Sanders supporters who didn’t vote for Clinton are contemptible idiots. But then he admits that, when Trump was elected, he realized he didn’t understand the USA. Verily, Rushdie didn’t understand the most important thing. He reminds me of a parallel universe with Jews advocating voting for Himmler instead of Hitler.

Rushdie claims the “left” is obsessed with purity. And he rightly points at Socialists, Communists, Marxists, Trotskyists, Anarchists, Maoists. Whatever: the same can be said of the extreme right, Nazis, Fascists, etc… Or even the center (that’s why there is no center in the United Kingdom).

In a French philosophical magazine, Rushdie claims that “we have entered the era of the impossible”. Little does he seem to know. The impossible made history countless times.

Part of the Famous Chigi Vase, Showing Hoplites In Formation. Complete With Musician. Upon Hoplites, Freedom Rested. Similarly, Constant War Made the Italian Renaissance, Starting With the Florence Republic Issuing Bonds To Pay for Its Army (killed centuries later by Medici plutocracy).

Actually, Rushdie understands nothing in exactly the same way as Trump, Macron, the Clintons and Obama didn’t understand anything most important: people have had enough of the inequality which is degrading civilization.

When asked why he didn’t reveal his work on (Gaussian) curvature, the tremendous mathematician Friedrich Gauss sneered in a letter to Bessel in 1829, that:”It may take very long before I make public my investigations on this issue: in fact, this may not happen in my lifetime for I fear the “clamor of the Boeotians.”

Boeotia was the city state, capital Thebes, north of Attica. Athenians viewed it as dull, insipid and brutish. They shouldn’t have. With crucial Athenian military help, Thebes destroyed Spartan supremacy forever by freeing the lands, and at least one city-state, that it had enslaved, for centuries. Sparta’s downfall was propelled by the same mood which had brought its war against Athens 80 years prior. Namely, obstinately taking itself for a superpower, and imposing that at all cost (a bit the same as Putin’s Russia nowadays; Sparta was also led by a charismatic king, Agesilaus II, who stayed popular in his eighties, although Sparta was clearly going downhill, big time).

Later, though, Alexander burned Thebes to the ground, while Athens watched (that led to the eradication of democracy). Demosthenes had warned against the Macedonians. Recently I read a history book, just written, which claims that Demosthenes was the bad guy, as Athens should have submitted to Macedonia, more readily.

This is to forget that Athens did submit to Alexander, but not really Macedonia. Antipater took the succession of Alexander after the latter’s death. The resulting war between Antipater and Athens brought Macedonian victory and the establishment, by Antipater, of a plutocracy in Athens (only the richest could vote: destitute citizens, most of them, got deprived of their citizens’ rights).

The Theban army, around 36,000 men was roughly the size of Alexander’s. The battle was long uncertain, as Thebes fought with the energy of despair, knowing it faced annihilation. If the Athenian army had joined Thebes, the Macedonians would have been annihilated.

The Macedonians were intrinsically fascist, because of their way of life: plutocrats owned vast domains where horses were brought up, gold mines, etc. The Greeks to the south lived in cities, from more intellectual tasks, where ideas hence democracy were more productive. The opposition was total, it couldn’t be remedied: either the Macedonian brutes would conquer intellectual Greece, or Intellectual Greece would defeat the brutes. Because the Greeks didn’t act when they could, with the Macedonians as they had with the Persians, democracy and intelligence got defeated by the rule of malevolence (which is what “plutocracy” means)

***

The lesson for today’s world?

The military side of things should not be neglected. One battle can decide the world. Nor should the endurance of plutocracy, and the mind control it can exert. After Antipater submitted Athens, the mental subjugation was such that, to this day, people have forgotten all what democracy consists of. They came to call countries “led” by Obama, Trump, Macron, let alone Putin and the Queen of England, “democracies” Whereas those countries are parodies of what the ancient Greeks called “democracy”.

Contradictors would point out that Athens had only 80,000 citizens at most, with plenty of slaves and subjugated women.  However, the subjugation of women was a phenomenon specific to Athens, not to all Greek city-states (Spartan women personally owned much of Sparta, as Aristotle whined).  The fact that, at the height of her power, during the Fifth Century BCE, Athens was attacked by the greatest powers, first Achaemenid Persia, then Sparta, then Sparta allied with Achaemenid Persia, has a lot to do with it, in my opinion.

In this world war, fascism against democracy situation, Athens was first a military empire fighting for survival. When Athens sent an expedition to Egypt to free her mother civilization (yes, Egypt) from Persian subjugation, it was no time to ponder who deserved to be citizens or not (in its final struggle against Alexander, Thebes made her slaves citizens). Ultimately the Egyptian expedition failed, but it was another fracture in Persian armor (later to be exploited by Alexander).

So what to say of today? The entire world is reminiscent of Greece plus Macedonia. The “West” consists in a number of nations (including Japan). That would be the equivalent of the Delian league, headed by Athens.

Except that, nowadays, the world is militarily led by the USA while intellectually led by Europe. That was exactly the Greco-Roman arrangement which lasted for 1600 years, until it was replaced by a Franko-Greek arrangement by 800 CE, to Constantinople’s fury; however, while Rome was a always mental subset of Greece, with a superior fascist republic, the Franks came to dominate Constantinople in all ways, precisely because Constantinople versed into fanaticism, for much too long and too deep.

Indeed, as everybody knows, Constantinople, Oriental Rome, went down. In no small measure because, by the Eighth Century, the Franks looked down on Constantinople’s Christian fanaticism. Whereas all what Constantinople could see what that the savage Muslims below its walls were successful because precisely they were fanatically religious savages, so they duplicated that global mood.

***

Conclusion: Debate and Think, in a Timely Manner. Change Moods:

Sparta’s failure to change its global mood in a timely manner led to its military and then demographic disappearance (the same fate threatens quite a few countries nowadays). Worse, Sparta nearly eradicated Athens, and certainly destroyed her remarkable mood of total inquiry, all azimuths. it would have been better to mimic Athens than try to destroy civilization.

Athens survived because, under Roman hegemony, Athens was the place of higher learning and higher wisdom. Centuries later, fanatical Christian emperors tried to shut down Athens by shutting down its schools. The result is that the Franks decided that the “translatio studii” had happened: Paris was the New Athens, a translation of studies had occurred, centred on Paris’ Cathedral (not the present Notre Dame, the one before; the change of cathedrals enabled the university to become physically independent).

Don’t forget that fascism and its version with a civilized veneer, plutocracy, are extremely sticky: we got overwhelmed by fascism and plutocracy, 24 centuries ago, and didn’t get out of it yet.

The “West”, whatever that is (is the People’s Republic of China in it, or not?) has to be broad and open-minded, yet military threats should be eliminated in a timely manner (that is, before they can become uncontrollable).

In the past, the mightiest empire (Rome, China, the Aztecs) fell to relatively small enemy forces (the Goths and Genghis Khan’s Mongols had no more than 200,000 warriors; subsequent German invasions were from much smaller numbers). Cortez conquered the Aztecs with less than 1500 men, and was repeatedly teased by the Aztecs that he could not make it, because of his tiny numbers. The Aztecs didn’t know that the Conquistadores were making shots with copper warheads for their crossbows, industrially, having recruited hundreds of thousands of natives to do so to their specifications.

Tiny enemies, like tiny rattlesnakes, are the more venomous, the smaller they are, precisely because their small size motivates them more. Thus, full severity with Muslim fanatics (Jihadists), is fully justified.  Same for North Korea, if it pursues its plans to nuclear blackmail the world (Athens didn’t wait for Persia to attack, doing nothing; first it armed itself to the teeth; thus, when Persia asked for submission, Athens had enough might to say no).   

***

Kill Infamy While You Can:

Says The Economist, all too mildly in “How To Avoid Nuclear War With North Korea”:

“There are no good options to curb Kim Jong Un. But blundering into war would be the worst

IT IS odd that North Korea causes so much trouble. It is not exactly a superpower. Its economy is only a fiftieth as big as that of its democratic capitalist cousin, South Korea. Americans spend twice its total GDP on their pets. Yet Kim Jong Un’s backward little dictatorship has grabbed the attention of the whole world, and even of America’s president, with its nuclear brinkmanship. On July 28th it tested an intercontinental ballistic missile that could hit Los Angeles. Before long, it will be able to mount nuclear warheads on such missiles, as it already can on missiles aimed at South Korea and Japan. In charge of this terrifying arsenal is a man who was brought up as a demigod and cares nothing for human life—witness the innocents beaten to death with hammers in his gigantic gulag. Last week his foreign ministry vowed that if the regime’s “supreme dignity” is threatened, it will “pre-emptively annihilate” the countries that threaten it, with all means “including the nuclear ones”. Only a fool could fail to be alarmed.”

Odd? Why odd? China uses North Korea as a form of sophisticated blackmail, why Mr. Xi tries to push the other way, namely in the South China Sea (while all these tensions stoke nationalism, hence his rule). The Economist to weakly recommend to “contain” North Korea. Just as is already done. Hitler, too, was contained. Until it became clear to Britain and France that the best choice was to declare war. Next recommendation from The Economist: breathe deep and carry on.

And why does The Economist pretend that “blundering into war” is the worst. No. The “worst” would be nuclear blackmail as far as the eye can see. Within a few decades, the young Mr. Kim could have the ability to annihilate the “West” in its entirety. The obvious remark is that a war with North Korea, a cannibalistic mafia state, now, would probably not go nuclear. Wait, and it will. Nuclear War has a high probability NOT to be contained (a strike, or attempted strike, on a US city would probably mean annihilation of North Korea and all its allies, real or imagined).

***

IMPOSSIBLE IS ALL TOO OFTEN, NOT REAL:

The impossible made history countless times. One has to be ready for the impossible, that’s how to contain it. 

History beats fiction, anytime. Want to learn something drastic? Learn real history.  It’s never weak.

Patrice Ayme’

Relativistic Philosophy Beyond Consensus

August 4, 2017

It’s good to focus on “General Relativity” and Cosmology without the cloak of mathematics gone wild and unsupervised, indeed.

Anything having to do with “General Relativity” has a lot of extremely debatable philosophy hidden below a thick carpet of computations. Abuse of philosophically unsupervised spacetime leads one to believe in time machines, wormholes, and similar absurdities. A recent discovery such as Dark Energy (ever expanding space faster than previously anticipated), and a not so recent one, Dark Matter, show one has to be extremely careful.

Einstein equation of “General Relativity” (GR) is basically Curvature = Mass-Energy. Einstein long observed that the left hand side of the equation was built of mathematical beauty, and the right hand side of a murky mud of a mess. The discovery of Dark Matter proved him prophetic about that. (BTW, I know perfectly well that, stricto sensu, it’s the Ricci tensor, derived from the full Curvature tensor on the left…)

First a philosophical trap: “General Relativity” (GR) is a misnomer. It’s not clear what’s being generalized. GR is certainly a theory of the relationship between gravity and local space-times (the Theory of Relativity of space and time which Poincaré named that way in 1904).

Einstein was initially motivated to explain inertia according to the Newton-Mach observation that the distant stars seemed to endow matter with inertia (because if matter rotates relative to distant stars, a centrifugal force appears).

That way, he failed, as Kurt Goedel produced spacetime models which rotated wildly without local consequences. Frame dragging exists nevertheless, and is crucial to GPS. So GR has local consequences.

Neither Poincaré nor Einstein liked the concept of “spacetime”.

There are massive galaxy cluster, such as Abell 370 (shown here). They can be made up of thousands of Milky Way-sized galaxies. This is beyond anything we can presently have a feeling for. The space inside this cluster is not expanding, that’s a fact, but the space between this cluster and other, unbound, galaxies and clusters, is viewed by today’s Main Stream Cosmology, as expanding. I’m robustly skeptical. Image credit: NASA, ESA/Hubble, HST Frontier Fields.

A question has naturally come up: if space expands, how come we don’t? An answer to this has been the raisin bread model of the expanding universe.

As Sabine Hossenfelder, a theoretical physicist in Quantum Gravity and High energy physics  puts it: “In cosmology, too, it helps to first clarify what it is we measure. We don’t measure the size of space between galaxies — how would we do that? We measure the light that comes from distant galaxies. And it turns out to be systematically red-shifted regardless of where we look. A simple way to describe this — a space-time slicing that makes calculations and interpretations easy — is that space between the galaxies expands.”

However, the entire area is contentious. The usual snap-back of haughty physicist keen to deny any brains worth noticing to the Commons, is to say that all those who don’t understand the mathematics at hand should shut up.

That’s a disingenuous answer, as NOBODY understands fully the mathematics at hand (those with snappy rejoinders know this, but they enjoy their power maliciously).

An example of the non-universality of the notion of expanding space is the following exact quote from Physics Nobel Laureate Steven Weinberg, author, among many other things, such as the Weinberg-Salam model of the electroweak interaction, of the most famous textbook on the subject, “Gravitation and Cosmology”: “…how is it possible for space, which is utterly empty, to expand? How can nothing expand? The answer is: space does not expand. Cosmologists sometimes talk about expanding space, but they should know better”

Well, they don’t.

Reference https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/raisin-bread-model-of-space-time.901290/

Personally, I think that both space and time are local concepts (as long as one does not add to consideration the Quantum theory, as it was created, post 1923, by De Broglie, and after 1924, by the Copenhagen School). Local space and local time are united by the speed of light, c, through naturally ubiquitous light clocks. Space and time are measured locally (although Poincaré proposed a slow motion to move synchronized clocks around, and Einstein copied and published that mechanism, verbatim, as he had with E = m c²).

It has been proposed that the redshift of cosmological photons, and its attribution, 100%, to the expansion of spacetime, is a proof of the expanding “spacetime”. One must say that this statement is the core of present cosmology. And anybody looking down on the idea will not be viewed as serious by famous physicists. However just saying something does not prove it. Especially when the conclusion seems to be the hypothesis.

Lorentz- Poincaré Local Space and Time theory was experimentally provable (electromagnetism proved it).

But where is the proof that the universe is like an expanding dough, spacetime, with galactic raisin grains in it? Just waving the notion that the atomic force is 10⁴⁰ the gravitation force at a small scale does not seem compelling to me. It’s rather a question of range: gravitation is much longer range, although, much weaker. Thus the geodesic deviations due to gravitation show up at a very great distance, whereas those due to atomic and molecular force cause enormous geodesic deviations, but only at very short range. We are these enormous local deviations, larger by 10⁴⁰ locally.

Yet, even this more precise argument smacks of hand waving.  Why? Because a theory of local forces as curvatures, although posited by Riemann in 1865, and the foundation of GR, still does not exist (that’s one thing string theory was trying to achieve, and failed). Gravitation remains the only force that is tautologically equivalent to a curved space theory.

Quantum Physics has provided that theoretical spacetime with a nonlocal causal architecture (through Quantum Entanglement). However that “causality” although geometric, is non metric (and thus manifests itself with no geodesic deviation, no force).

Einstein, after a debate on nonlocality imparted by the Quantum, with the Austrian philosopher Karl Popper, attracted the world’s attention on that problem in 1935, with his famous EPR paper. There Einstein denounced the way the “spooky action at a distance” affected distant “elements of reality”. Since then, the spookiness at a distance has been amply confirmed (and enables to encrypt space communications while knowing 100% whether they have been breached, as a Chinese satellite recently showed). Nonlocal effects show unambiguously that the metric (of “spacetime”) does not capture all the geometry (an notion which may surprise physicists, but not those mathematicians who have studied the foundations of their field).

This Quantum architecture has led, so far, to no prophecy, let alone theory, by established physicist. Entangled Quantum architecture is actually not part of the General Relativistic raisin cake model (or any GR model). However, I will venture to say one can view it as predicting Dark matter, at the very least. It’s just a question of baking something more sophisticated than raisin bread.

Patrice Ayme

Ctenophora Rewriting 750 Million Years Of Neural Evolution

August 2, 2017

Ctenophora were long considered just a kind of jellyfish. Turns out that was a gross mistake. Indeed a Russian immigrant to the USA, Leonid Moroz, found that these animals were unrelated to jellyfish. In fact, ctenophora are so profoundly different from any other animal on Earth, that it has been discovered they are much older, and unrelated, to sponges (previously sponges were thought to be by far the oldest animals; now this is known to be wrong).

In 1995, Moroz tested the nerve cells of ctenophora for the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine and nitric oxide, chemical messengers considered the universal instruments of the neural language of all and any animals. He didn’t find any of them.

Ctenophora were already known for having a serious nervous system, complete with neurons; but these first experiments by Moroz showed that ctenophora nerves are built from molecular building blocks – different from any other animal – using ‘a different chemical language’! says Moroz: he calls these animals ‘aliens of the sea’.

If vertebrates had not appeared, 200 million years after ctenophora, probably confining the latter into an ecological niche, civilization may have evolved from ctenophora.

An obscure force seems to compel the apparition of complex nervous systems to evolve. It is universal – not just on Earth, but also on inhabited exoplanets. And I will show roughly what it is, and where it comes from in a companion essay (to which this one is introductory).

Jellyfishes use muscles to flap their bodies and swim. Whereas ctenophora use thousands of cilia to swim. They can be very small, but the largest are 1.5 meter long (5 feet). Jellyfishes sting, ctenophora capture prey using two sticky tentacles that secrete glue. Ctenophora ambush their prey.  

Studies of ctenophora, starting 130 years ago, showed neuron masses, and, more recently, what looked like synapses. 

Ctenophore. It looks as if the ancestors of vertebrates MUSCLED out (serious pun intended!) the ctenophora. With sheer muscle power the cilia smarts ctenophora were thrown into a niche!

Moroz finally was able to make a “transcriptome” of the DNA of ctenophora in 2007.   5,000 or 6,000 gene sequences were actively turned on in the animal’s nerve cells. His team showed that Pleurobrachia lacked the genes and enzymes required to manufacture neurotransmitters seen in other animals. These missing neurotransmitters included the ones that Moroz found to be absent back in 1995 – serotonin, dopamine and nitric oxide – but also acetylcholine, octopamine, noradrenaline, etc. Ctenophora also lacked genes for receptors that to respond to conventional neurotransmitters.

As Moroz team put it in Nature:

“The origins of neural systems remain unresolved. In contrast to other basal metazoans, ctenophores (comb jellies) have both complex nervous and mesoderm-derived muscular systems. These holoplanktonic predators also have sophisticated ciliated locomotion, behaviour and distinct development. Here we present the draft genome of ten… ctenophore transcriptomes, and show that they are remarkably distinct from other animal genomes in their content of neurogenic, immune and developmental genes. Our integrative analyses place Ctenophora as the earliest lineage within Metazoa. This hypothesis is supported by comparative analysis of multiple gene families, including the apparent absence of HOX genes, canonical microRNA machinery, and reduced immune complement in ctenophores. Although two distinct nervous systems are well recognized in ctenophores, many bilaterian neuron-specific genes and genes of ‘classical’ neurotransmitter pathways either are absent or, if present, are not expressed in neurons. Our metabolomic and physiological data are consistent with the hypothesis that ctenophore neural systems, and possibly muscle specification, evolved independently from those in other animals.”

[Nature, June 2014. The ctenophore genome and the evolutionary origins of neural systems]

Further studies have confirmed that ctenophora have evolved earlier, and completely independently of other animals.

Ctenophora lack entire classes of genes that had been thought to be universal to all animals. These included so-called micro-RNA genes, which help to form specialised cell types in organs, and HOX genes, which divide bodies into separate parts, be it the segmented body of a worm or lobster, or the segmented spine and finger bones of a vertebrate.  Such genes are present in simple sponges and placozoa.

Ctenophora are the oldest type of animal known! (Moroz tried to publish a paper in 2009 which implicitly led to that conclusion; it was rejected. He then did more refined studies which led to the 2014 Nature paper.)

Moroz now counts up to 12 independent evolutionary origins of the nervous system. Including at least one in cnidaria (the group that includes jellyfish and anemones), three in echinoderms (the group that includes sea stars, sea lilies, urchins and sand dollars), one in arthropods (the group that includes insects, spiders and crustaceans), one in molluscs (the group that includes clams, snails, squid and octopuses), one in vertebrates – and now, at least one in ctenophora.

“There is more than one way to make a neuron, more than one way to make a brain,” says Moroz. In each of these evolutionary branches, different genes and proteins ensembles got elected through random gene mutations, to take part in building a nervous system. The details are completely different, yet, the big picture is the same!

And that’s no accident, as I will argue, there is an underlying Quantum force pushing towards intelligence… Thus Lamarck was right.

Moroz rejected much of what he was taught. Because his ‘initial hypothesis was exactly what was in the textbooks’, moving to the correct way of thinking about ctenophora took him 20 years.

Science is truth, but truth is not obvious. And searching for it is even more demanding.

Patrice Ayme’