Archive for the ‘Systems Of Mind’ Category

People Need Faith, Not Philosophy?

September 5, 2017

No, just the opposite:

PEOPLE NEED BETTER PHILOSOPHY TO BUILD BETTER FAITH(S):

Faith arises from philosophy. Saying one needs faith, not philosophy is as if one said one needs lungs, not air. I will defend a very different thesis: people need to have faith in philosophy, in the philosophical approach. Such an attitude is not very popular in the USA, where philosophy seems only second to Conspiracy Theory as a subject worth studying.

The word “faith” comes, through Old French as usual, from the Latin “fides”, trust. Anything we believe in, be it a physical law, or a historical fact, we have to trust it’s true. So trust, faith is at every corner, every step of the way.  

To have faith in philosophy never has been, and never will be, as long as the US population doesn’t make a deep analysis of the deliberate stupidity the USA used as a cover-up for 4 centuries of exploitative criminality and counting…

“People need faith, not philosophy” suggests a faithful commenter on Thoughts, Eugen R. The idea has been frequently brandished by intellectuals in the jungle of ideas out there. Some basic concepts cause problems here. “People”, and “Faith”. Their considerable, multidimensional bulk has to be examined. Moreover, I deplore the mood behind the entire aphorism: indeed, a correct, most appropriate faith can only be established by a more advanced philosophy. All and any faith is the fruit of a philosophical process. If not yours, then someone’s else (Zarathustra, Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad, etc.)

Contrarily to repute, “faith” is eminently practical. Because, in its most frequent form, it’s laic, not superstitious. “Faith” is necessary to operate: one has to have faith that, whatever one is engaging into, it will bring something good.

Take for example the plight of the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, which used to be called Burma, and whose PM is An San Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace prize laureate (who deserved it, unlike Obama!). One has to have faith that the abominable situation they are in can be mitigated, if one pays enough attention to it. Myanmar claims that of almost 400 people killed since Aug. 25, nearly all are insurgents. Apparently Rohingya toddlers are very rebellious, and deserve death. Myanmar officials have accused insurgents of burning Buddhist monasteries and statues.

Well, I have faith in the good nature, overall, of most people, and that good things come from exhibiting this faith. This is why mentioning infamy leads to fighting it. Or so I believe. Faith, you see?

***

As life, or any project, ends in death always, faith in the desirability of daily tasks, is a triumph over the prospect of death. It’s an act of the deepest faith. That doesn’t mean that faith should be blind: one has to desire to indulge in worthy pursuits.

But of course, by “faith”, Eugen R implicitly meant the sort of fanaticism Abrahamists are known for. Consider Catholic priests in Japan, refusing to put their foot on an image of Christ (as if Christ would feel the foot, which it deserved, anyway; see the book and movies “Silence”)

Assuming “People” need “faith” but rulers do not, is a perpetual stand-by, as long as there are rulers and they rule. The nature of the faith varies: to oppress and subjugate other people, one has to oppress and subjugate their minds.

***

Toyotomi Hideyoshi Or When Rulers Decide What The Faith Of The People Is:

Toyotomi Hideyoshi correctly perceived that Christianity, known and perceived as the cult of equalitarian Christ, would have revolutionary consequences in Japan. Toyotomi Hideyoshi unified a warring Japan, thanks to an extremely hierarchized society where peasants had been disarmed. Christianity, under the guise of generalized goodness, threatened to undo all of this. So it had to be extinguished, and this started by extinguishing its symbols.

 

A Given Faith Can Be Revolutionary There, Anti-Revolutionary Here:

Overall ruler Toyotomi Hideyoshi in Sixteenth Century Japan put an end to peasant revolts by making illegal for peasants to have swords (and a fortiori firearms). At the same time, he crucified 26 Franciscans in Nagasaki, and made Christianity illegal (although he had to embrace Christian traders). Toyotomi was a man of many strong faiths: for example he tried to conquer China (that involved conquering Korea first, and that he did; but next the Korean navy sank his fleet, a problem, considering that China had been pulled into the war…).

In 1600 CE Japanese society, Christianism was revolutionary (all men were equal in the eyes of Christ). Whereas in Fourth Century Rome, Christianism was debilitating, distracting and by 390 CE, a way to not just subjugate, by actually assassinating free spirits.

It’s actually fascinating that the same religion could be liberating in Japan, and subjugating in the Roman empire. The reasons are clear, albeit complex: Rome started as a republican democracy, Japan as a military ruled society (where Rome ended, yet not so well, because it didn’t start this way).

***

Constantine, Theodosius, & Other Roman Emperors Imposed Faith In Catholic Terror:

In all societies, religions of the rulers is different from that of those they rule: Charlemagne wanted the Saxons to submit to Christianism scrupulously, under the penalty of death, but he personally took king David of Israel as a model, and in his realm Christians were free to convert to Judaism, while he himself, like all the top Franks, lived with a harem.

Nietzsche spent much time exposing the hypocrisy of Christianism as practiced in Europe: the military hereditary class known as the “nobles” or “aristocrats”, similar to the one in Japan, had, in practice, a very different religion from the “People”.

(By the way, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who achieved immense power, even trying to invade China after invading all of Korea, was of unknown peasant stock, he rose through the military hierarchy, all by himself, a story not found in Rome, and Europe, because, there, those who reached ultimate command, were themselves children of individuals who had reached power by themselves: for example the uncle of emperor Justinian, or the parents of emperor Constantine, etc; most of the others were part of dynasties, some of them last centuries).

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The Roman Republic Had Faith In Itself:

In other words the Roman PEOPLE, during the full Roman Republic, had faith in itself, and reason, not some fascistic, capricious, jealous Bible god.

Continual, overwhelming, astounding heroism, fortitude and obdurate will characterized the Roman Republic for centuries. Many times, the Republic should have perished, facing desperate military situations, as when the Gauls seized Rome, and a few geese saved the Capitol. These were the times, and they lasted for ever, when the religion of the Romans was the Republic.

That mood, that faith, was so strong, that it survived the collapse of the Roman government, and transmogrified into faith in what was called the “Christian Republic” (basically an early form of Liberté, égalité, fraternité “liberty, equality, fraternity”.

Actually the original motto of the French Republic was: “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, Or Death”.

“Liberty, Equality, Fraternity”: a faith worth dying for. At least so have thought many Western societies in the last 26 centuries.

Liberty Or Death! The death part, which is very Roman Republican (and later, Roman Catholic), was dropped later, because it was too reminiscent of the “terror” of 1793-94… itself an answer to earlier terrors…). (Bibliothèque Nationale de France; republican poster from circa 1793.)

People don’t need “faith” in a superstitious religion as a motivation to rule; the fruits that exploiting others bring, are obvious enough. However, subjugated people do need faith, to justify their own subjugation (Abrahamism and Buddhist like faiths have proven highly suitable)…

That “people need faith, not philosophy”. That was an idea imposed sneakily in the PRINCIPATE period of the Roman empire, which lasted 3 centuries. It became clear when some dead rulers were proclaimed to be gods.

Then faith in superstitious faith was imposed loud and clear by emperor Diocletian with the cult of SOL, around 300 CE. (The Cult of Sol was similar to the Japanese one in some ways… Japan also had a military government, by its own admission, from the middle of the Middle Ages). At that point, the emperor started to be recognized as a living god, although Constantine backed that down to himself being only the 13th Apostle; Theodosius would further back down by recognizing the primacy of the bishop of Milan (Saint Ambrose) over himself (the secular leader, who had to beg public forgiveness to the bishop over some massacre, under the threat of excommunication).

A fully liberated people is emperor of its own realm. The realm is secular. Faith of the superstitious type, irrelevant.

Full democracy means no rulers, but for We The People themselves.

It’s no utopia, but increasingly, as pragmatic, no-nonsense Switzerland is governed. Athens, at her best, was governed that way.

***

Faith In Tyranny Is Requested By Tyrants:

Instead what we have nowadays, increasingly is structures like the Eurogroup, the government of the Euro Zone. The Eurogroup, made of finance ministers of the Euro Zone, has huge powers. However, its unelected, uncontrolled, and not even formally acknowledged by the European Constitution.

Common people are supposed to have faith in their in their European masters. So we see that faith in masters replaces democracy, people-power.

That was excusable to some extent in societies such as the Late Greco-Roman empire, where most of the country folks didn’t know how to read and write, whereas the aristocrats and top urban types did. At least this is what some will say.  

However, when people have power, and thus take the decisions, faith in masters is replaced by attention to detail.

Thus, and conversely, throughout history, the greatest rulers tended to be contributors to top intellectual debate. Darius, Alexander the Great, Caesar, Constantine, Saint Augustine, Clovis, even Genghis Khan, Saint Louis or Louis XIV have contributed heavily to the history of thought. They all understood that having faith in what they viewed as philosophy was at the core of their essence, as rulers.

***

To Rule Best, One Has To Be Ruled By The Highest Faiths

Education had been front and center with the Franks, for centuries, causing a strident conflict with the Papacy (for which knowing god was enough). Weirdly, Charlemagne’s father had not given a full literary education to his two sons. However, when he became ruler of what was in many ways, the most advanced empire, Charlemagne was fully aware of the necessity of knowledge. He was an admirable speaker in Frankish and Latin, his mother tongues, and also knew Greek. He surrounded himself with some of Europe’s top philosophers, making the British thinker Alcuin his Prime Minister. Charles spent hours in study to improve his writing.

Charlemagne had faith in knowledge. He knew that Augustus’ will to leave a undefendable frontier in Germany was absurd. So the last tribe had to be reduced into submission, the Saxons. He fought them for 32 years, including 18 main battles. Charlemagne had faith that this last corner in north-east Germany had to be civilized. His faith bore fruit: 150 years later, the Saxons had become the main force of the Renovated Roman empire.

We need faith in knowledge too. And faith in ourselves as we confront cannibalistic thermonuclear punks (Kim and his allies).

The higher faiths are grounded in the highest philosophy.

Proof?

Look at physics:

***

New Physics, New Philosophy:

Buridan proposed the heliocentric system around 1350 CE, from his new mechanics (the completion of which is now called “Newtonian Mechanics”). He observed that one didn’t have experimental means to make sure heliocentrism was true, directly (those would appear in the Seventeenth Century, a careful observation of the phases of Venus, the way the Sun was illuminating Sol). However Buridan ruefully scoffed that one may as well believe in geocentrism, because “Scripture” said so.

In 1350 CE, physics was thus philosophically decided. Should one believe the Bible, something written by some exiled Jews in Babylon, 19 centuries prior, or should one believe that the little, presumably less massive thing (the Earth) rotated around the giant thing (the Sun)? A philosophical choice said Buridan (and it was clear that the most rational thing was not to follow “Scripture”).

In the Twentieth Century, Einstein made a big deal that one should incorporate as fundamental laws in a theory only what one observed. Einstein was actually parroting Science and Hypothesis (La Science et l’Hypothèse) a book by French philosopher, physicist and mathematician Henri Poincaré, first published in 1902. When Quantum Mechanics, Copenhagen version, arose, a few years after De Broglie’s thesis, an incensed, hyper famous Einstein confronted the junior Werner Heisenberg about the craziness of Bohr-Heisenberg Quantum Mechanics. Calmly, Heisenberg replied he was just applying the philosophical insights Einstein himself had defended, and that he, Heisenberg, had learned by reading Einstein…

For example,  Poincaré had observed that light was always observed to be going at speed c, thus that had got to be a fundamental law. Bohr and Heisenberg similarly put in their theory of reality only ingredients which were observed (or, more exactly, observable). (Einstein chomping at the bit, tried for years to ruin the notion of reality of the Copenhagen school; ultimately, after a wise debate with the philosopher Popper, Einstein came out, in 1935, with the famous EPR paper revealing that Quantum mechanics was nonlocal… Amazingly nobody, aside from yours truly, seems to have noticed that this showed that a crucial part of Einstein 1905 Photoelectric Effect paper is nonsensical… This is an error which led to the absurd “Multiverse” Theory…)

Any significant, fundamental advance in physics, the nature of nature, is always accompanied with trusting new elements of reality, and less so, previous ones. As we change physics, we change faith.

Any cognition entails faith. We know, because we trust.

Patrice Ayme’    

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All We Need Is Truth

July 30, 2017

People are simple. And love to be simple. That’s why, for most of them, aside from their profession, all they know is “sports”, and it’s a new religion. Being complicated is expensive.

One commenter on my site, Benign, apparently obfuscated by my broadside against the delirious sexism of past and present Catholicism, called me deluded to think that “rationality” even exists. Evolution does not “progress.” The Soviets “rationally” outlawed marriage from ~1918 to the 1940s, before realizing that this “rational” decision didn’t work.”

The USSR outlawed marriage???????? Same source which saw them drinking blood of “capitalists”? Logic is easy, truth is hard.

Modernist, Postmodernist, Metamodernist Jargon Is Jargon, and jargon ain’t truth! “Meta”, though, is a serious operation we all practice. See “Mind From Meta“.

Marriage is a fact of human ethology, the natural behavior of humans. To outlaw it would not have been irrational, because reason can always be found, but futile, as going against marriage goes against human nature. This is exactly why the Soviets didn’t outlaw marriage: they were not that dumb.

By the late 1920s, Soviet adults had been made more responsible for the care of their children, and common-law marriage had been given equal legal status with civil marriage. Is that what Benign alludes to? By 1944, the Soviets went back, and recognized only legal civil marriage, to encourage more steady families.

Rationality exists, but as I have emphasized in the past, as a constant rolling of the drums, a logic can be anything. That evolution “progresses” is a battle from 1800 CE, when Lamarck asserted this thesis. It’s correct: clearly some of today’s lifeforms are the most complex ever.  Some day all biologists will proudly view Lamarck as right, and their predecessors of the 1960s, who were fanatically anti-Lamarck, as deluded bigots.

How do I know Lamarck was right? Tons of knowledge that those who scream Lamarck was a maniac (following the slave master Napoleon) never heard of these tons, they are children.

To see evolution’s progress, don’t look at sharks, or oysters, and other animals in evolutionary stasis. Instead, look at Blue Rorquals, most massive animals ever, & look at us, most clever. The most advanced animals are the most complex, and they are complex in ways beyond what we understand of genetics.

Beatles sang: “All You Need Is Love!”. Silly stuff: we all got love, otherwise we won’t exist. We have all the logics, at our disposal, and all the love we got as children.

To order and discipline our logic, and even our loves, most of what we need is truth

“Postmodernism” was the realization that many ideologies were the fruit of tribalism, not truth (as they malevolently claimed). This is not really new. See  vérité en deçà des Pyrénées, erreur au-delà de Pascal (a thought unpublished in his lifetime: truth before the Pyrénées, error beyond them)..

“Deconstruction” consisted in finding out where things came from. It’s not conceptually different from analysis (a unloosening), a concept found in Aristotle, and obvious centuries before him.

All this is to say that those who have pretended to introduce new ways of thinking about thinking have eschewed the truth: there is no truth, but truth, and, in the human species, it’s as old as dinner . There is no truth, but truth! In the human species, truth is as old as dinner. No truth, no dinner for the human, but one for the lion. The truth was in the dinner. In how to get dinner!

Right, truth is dangerous, because some claim to have it, and they don’t. But they always have, and always will. The Wise can’t go around, claiming they don’t have the truth, as Socrates did, or, worse, as Socrates claimed again and again, and the self-declared “post-modernists” parroted, that there is no truth… Because if they do that, they do exactly what German Jews (among others) did with Hitler and his Nazis: leave a wide open field for infamy to proclaim its own version of truth. And everybody, or, at least, most Germans, believed them. And others, like most Americans, pretended that it was OK with them.

The scientific method does NOT opposes the notion of truth, as those who have only a shallow knowledge of pop science are all too often led to believe. It’s exactly the opposite. Euclid’s theorem or the classical laws of optics are still true… They are actually more true than ever. In their domain of application. They are more true than ever, precisely because now we know where their domain of application came from. In other words, we control their meta-logic. We know where their truth come from, and where it’s located. And how to control it.

There is no logic without a metalogic, establishing therein, a notion of truth. Thinking is, and always was, an experimental process.

All we need is truth. But it’s the hardest thing. Truth never was, nor will ever be, a safe place. But it’s the safest place.

Patrice Ayme’

Trump, Macron Don’t Understand The First Thing

July 25, 2017

Trump, Macron Didn’t Understand the First Thing these times need: the right emotions, moods, ideas. And those can only spring from democracy. But what contemporaries call democracy, isn’t democratic enough to ripe the fruits of the democratic process. PR. Public Relations, is PC, Politically Correct, but not brainy enough.

Who are these arrogant would-be alpha apes who claim, to themselves, and to us, as loudly as they can, that they can lead humanity? OK, the Constitutions say so. But doesn’t that mean they should be changed? Apparently, the alpha males in a rut, have a large following in the USA and France. The French Army Chief of Staff resigned: he said no man should be followed blindly.

That provision was finally installed in the Bundeswehr’s Constitution. German soldiers’ obedience is now to the Constitution, not the “leader” (guide, Führer…) the same should be made clear to US soldiers.

Trump and Macron have huge military power at their disposal. No single man should have such powers.

What is the country spending the most on the military? The USA, in part by cheating on what “deficit” means (or, to put it milder, by defining the “deficit” completely differently from the way the European Union does. France spends more on the military than Russia, but still it’s not enough: at this point on France rests the defense of the entire European continent from Africa and the Middle East, where a religion has made the place so bad, nobody wants to live there anymore. Much better to bring the mess to Europe, where it’s still clean.

The way for France to pay for it’s military is to do like the USA: with a colossal deficit (no, not the one they talk about, the other one!)

In some ways, Macron is the French Trump. In other ways, Macron is the French Obama: he met with singer Bono yesterday, and is exchanging educational tips with Rihanna, a pseudo-singer, or pseudo-thinker (about how others hold her hips), famous for holding her chest in place during “music” videos, and other Crazy Horse Saloon antics… No activity is ridiculous enough to prevent Macron to luridly engage in it. 

Indeed a French Trump: consider the banking connection. Macron came out of nowhere, to be showered with money, many millions of dollars,  even housing, by bankers.  Trump came out of his father’s wealth to become much more, thanks to bankers, who showered him with money.

The global plutocratic elite “hates” Trump because Trump is a loud mouth, an elephant in a porcelain store. The elite is deadly afraid that Trump will make global plutocracy obvious. Thus the global plutocratic elite much prefer Macron: Macron looks like a meritocrat, when, actually, his main merit was to become the man of plutocrats and bankers, who see in him a new Jesus. 

The Economist has found a watchdog it loves. Unfortunately, the way Macron is going, that won’t last… He walks on water, but will finish like May (the leopard shoes sticking out in the background).

France’s military chief of staff,  five-star general General Pierre De Villiers, quit, in a loud and very public spat. Emmanuel Macron had declared that defense spending would go down 850 million Euros, after making a campaign where he claimed he would augment military spending by a considerable 12%.

The French Republic is at war in Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Chad, Syria, Iraq. In the last 40 years, the French military was deployed in 70 combat operations.

Macron didn’t say to the French military:”I am your leader”, as The Economist pretends he did, by mis-translating “chef”. Macron said:”Je suis votre chef” (“I am your CHIEF”).  Do we need a tribal chief, millennia after tribes were rejected as optimal governance?

Macron clearly lied: he said he would augment military spending. As clearly needed, right way. Instead he slashed the military budget. It looks like the screwing of someone who likes to screw people. (Since then the military budget would have been re-established, and then some; a good way to economize would be to withdraw the French military from its operation inside France, which is costly and ridiculous; outlawing nasty Salafist Islam is the way to go.)

This incident also denotes that Macron has understood nothing. Nothing at all. Macron understood nothing at all of what ails the West most. The lack of democracy.

What ails the West most is the lack of democracy. One can’t have democracy, when inequality is too great. Clearly, little chief Macron intents to magnify said inequality further. Usually, when people talk inequality, they evoke the number of the wealthiest versus the number of the poorest, and how far they are. But the ancient Greeks would have looked at something else when quantifying democracy: the lack of isegoria (lack of equality in publicly addressing the People’s Assembly, the Ecclesia). The lack of isegoria would have been viewed as part of a more general lack of isonomy (equality management). In any case, No isegoria, no democracy.

Lack of democracy has led our world to disastrous decisions in economic and sociological matters. It has also led to massive, runaway inequality. Macron was brought to power by the explicit intervention of “adoptive fathers”, such as David Rothschild, who indirectly gave Macron millions, while another plutocrats (lent and) gave him a million Euro apartment in Paris, when Macon was basically a babe. But a babe who had direct oversight on taxing the plutocrats, including Banque Rothschild, which then employed Emmanuel Macron.

Obama didn’t do much, if anything, of what he claimed he would do. Instead, his tenure served the plutocrats. And the proof is that inequality has never been so great in the USA. The case of Macron is clearer: he clearly became “chief” as an instrument of the wealthiest, dirtiest few who have fed him like a hungry baby crocodile. When voters realize the  crocodile is just that, a crocodile, growing fast claiming he leads humanity, they will see only barbarity in his whole tenure. Fear the streets. And the army will not rush to Macron’s rescue.

We don’t need to be led by self-aggrandizing psychopaths. We need to be led by the best emotions, moods, and ideas. Clearly, having Macron or Trump as “chiefs” to obey blindly is not one of them.

Everything is wrong with civilization nowadays: the poles are melting, and fast (ice VOLUME is collapsing in the Arctic; some will scoff; however I was evacuated from my house by a giant fire, this essay is written under mental distress, knowing landscapes I loved just burned out to a crisp… the fire is still going on: “austerity” made it so that there were not enough anti-fire planes…). Our great leaders organized all that.

Common people pay lots of taxes, so that, and because, billionaires pay none. Some then sung: all you need is love, all important things in the world are free. Right. Until you realize this: Macron’s educational adviser is Rihanna, the one who holds her chest, as a new form of dancing with self.

The wealthiest people in the world have so much money, so so much power, that they have made, and are making ever more, most people so incredibly stupid, they have no idea what’s going on. They are like bleating sheep going to slaughter. Watch those lesser beings get so thrilled about “sports”, namely tribal frenzies.

Common people pay lots of taxes, so that, and because, billionaires tell them how to think, how not to think, and even how to feel. This is not 1984 anymore, it’s worse.

Patrice Ayme’

The Letter & The RE-ENTRANT MIND

July 19, 2017

Yesterday I got a letter from Barack Obama.

This gracious gesture left a lasting impression. This real fact in the real world, brought my mind to create, all on its own, a reality that had never been before. And will ever last, as far as I am concerned. It’s not just the multiverse, it’s the private multiverse.

Before you think that I am, at last, humbling admitting I am nuts, let me perfidiously add that we all do this, I am just ahead of my time, in observing it, as Nietzsche would modestly point out, if he was writing on my behalf. A core way in which wisdom progresses is by introspection. Introspection: one does not get more core than that. Deeper, more penetrating introspection is future civilization. Perceiving more correctly what perception is was central to the Quantum revolution. Don’t laugh, the inventors of Quantum Mechanics analyzed in-depth what to “experience” meant; an indignant Einstein was reminded by Heisenberg that he and his colleagues were just following the general philosophical principles set by Einstein of considering carefully what was experimentally perceived.   

Last night, I had many dreams, on many things, but in one of them, pretty short, figured Barack Obama, sleeping like a babe, on a makeshift black leather couch system. A running commentary said he was sharing the (very large) room with the US military chief of staff. I was milling around. Something tense about the state of the world was coming down…

After I woke up, I remembered the dream as if it had really happened. So now in my memory system, there is a vivid picture of Obama sleeping as described above. Although it never happened. (I never met Obama in such circumstances.) 

We mostly perceive… what we think. Thus the world as we perceive it, is the exact opposite of what the ancients imagined it to be.

So there was a part of my history, relative to someone else, created by my own mind in the context of the relationship with that person. And it’s pure fiction as a historical fact outside of me, yet, a historical fact as far as my neurocircuitry is concerned.

Plato never talked about such things, nor the parrots who repeated that tyrant lover, ad nauseam.

Plato’s Cave is a rather stupid, certainly very condescending picture of the universe. Moreover, it misunderstands the wall of the cave: it’s actually the universe itself, a universe we partly created ourselves, the universe of our minds, and it’s much richer than the outside world, which only excites, entices, encourages our perception further along.  

This sort of self-made movies does not pertain to my fertile imagination alone. Everybody does it, although the degree of awareness of its genesis varies. From the real world input of sensations and experiences, human minds create a much more complex world amplifying that input in special ways pertaining to their own history. It’s Plato’s cave, in reverse, with much added.

***

Sad was my mood:

What happened is that, after I got the letter yesterday, I had a poignant feeling of what a waste my friend’s presidency has been. Nothing that the innocence of sleep can ever repair, however strong we imagine differently. I remembered the spark of hope, ten years ago. True, a few things were achieved by his presidency (the fact that health insurance companies can’t deny from pre-existing conditions). But much was lost too (inequality has never been so great, and Obama has his name written all over that, including the unresisted and wildly encouraged rise of tech monopolies and the demolition of the Patent System). Pluto-Democrats devoured it all…

***

While my guitar gently weeps…

Patrice Ayme’

Dark Matter Theories Enlighten Obscure Concept of Explanation

July 14, 2017

I have struggled with the Foundations of Quantum Physics for decades. Yes, struggle is the meaning of life, as our irascible friend the close-minded Jihadist said, and Albert Camus, too, maybe stimulated by the former, among his colleagues, the Natives of Algeria. I did the deepest studies, I could imagine, plunging in esoteric fields, so deep, I was laughed at, by those who prefer the shallows. Long ago. For example, I thought Category Theory (referred by its critics, then, as “Abstract Nonsense“) should be useful. Then even mathematicians would veil their faces, when Category Theory was evoked. Now, Category Theory is very useful, both in pure mathematics and physics.

The deepest mystery in physics is to understand the Quantum.

Some have sneered:’oh, you lunatic, there is nothing to understand.’ Let them sneer, they are amusing, in their obscurantism. This was always the answer of those who wanted to understand nothing new, in the last ten million years. But the rise of advanced animals is the rise of under-standing. Standing under the appearances of the universe. It is a case where we have to understand what understanding means. 

Giant Galaxy, 1,000 times brighter than Milky Way, ten billion year old, discovered July 2017. It is seen as portions of ring from gravitational lensing by (I suppose) a galactic cluster in between…)

An incontrovertible mystery in physics is Dark Matter. Since the 1930s, we know that there is a massive contradiction between galaxies and gravity. (Between rotations and motions  of galaxies and the theory of gravity, more exactly; be it Newtonian, or its slight modification, Einsteinian gravity.)

So far, physicists have trained less and less conventional explanations of Dark Matter. My own SQPR (SubQuantum Patrice Reality), built to explain the Quantum, provides readily with an explanation of Dark Matter.  It’s completely out of the plane of conventional physics (if you condescend to consider Quantum Field Theory conventional…)

The Superfluid-Anyon model of Dark Matter (“SAD”) supposes that there is a type of particle (anyon) with a strong self-interaction, making a superfluid. In my own theory, SQPR, none of this is supposed.

Some will sneer that I suppose the existence of some properties which give rise to Quantum Physics, and this is what SQPR is. Didn’t Newton, assuredly a greater creature, proclaimed he didn’t make up hypotheses? Right. (Actually the Universal Attraction law was not hypothesized by Newton but by French astronomer Ishmael Bullialdus. So easy for Newton to say; Newton also hypothesized that light consisted of particles, and that he had proven strict equivalence between Kepler’s law and mechanics plus gravity…)

However, to under-stand Quantum Physics, to stand under it, one will have to suppose new, underlying hypotheses explaining the physics of the Quantum. If fundamental, paradigm shifting progress in physics is possible, this is how it will happen.

The leaner those hypotheses, the better. The heliocentric theory of planets’ orbits made FEWER hypotheses than those who believe “heavenly bodies” were special. Why so special? How special? The natural thing

An enormous meteorite, streaked through the skies in a fiery manner, and landed in Northern Greece. It was visited for centuries. Clearly space was full of rocks, no crystal balls…  

Considering other evidences (distance of the sun, computed to be large, thus the sun, enormous), the heliocentric theory was most natural.

Dark Matter may well be the equivalent of that theory. My own SQPR predicts a slow apparition, and built-up of Dark Matter. The latest observations (2017) of Dark Matter and ancient galaxies show no Dark Matter say ten billion years ago.

SAD does not predict that: it predicts Super Fluid Anyon Dark Matter was always there.

Science does not just teach facts and how to organize them in theories. I also teaches what explanations are.

Ex-planation is generally viewed as meaning to spread out. But there is a more striking etymology: An explanation is how to get out (ex) of a plane. In other words, acquiring a further logical dimension.

There is no fundamental new dimension, logically speaking, by supposing one more type of elementary particle. But deducing observed facts from effects which go beyond Quantum Physics would be really a new dimension of logic.

I make hypotheses, but fewer. And they are more natural. That’s the key. When one thinks about it, it was more natural to suppose that, out there in the heavens, matter was as we knew it. Similarly, out there in the Quantum, it is more natural that interactions are as we know them: at finite speed, to preserve causality. This is the most fundamental intuition of SQPR: it supposes that the Quantum Interaction (because spooky action at a distance is still an interaction of some sort) has preserved that fundamental property we observe in all interactions…

By the way, some of the skeptical ones come around, and they sneer that all this science is a wild goose chase after a goose which does not exist. They are mistaken: we are chasing after ourselves. We are chasing after how we explain things.

Even attempted scientific explanation are real, and fruitful. Because scientific activity, even when mistaken, consists in chasing after how we could explain things.

Patrice Ayme’

***

Technical description of SAD from Theory of Dark Matter Superfluidity:

…”a novel theory of DM superfluidity that reconciles the stunning success of MOND (MOdified Newtonian Dynamics) on galactic scales with the triumph of the ΛCDM (Cold Dark Matter) model on cosmological scales (where MOND fails miserably: MOND modifies gravity at some specific distance, way too small for galactic clusters; whereas ΛCDM leaves gravity alone, just adding mass, lots of mass, mass by a factor of ten…).

In the SAD model, the Dark Matter component consists of self-interacting axion-like particles which are generated out-of-equilibrium and remain decoupled from baryons throughout the history of the universe. Provided that its mass is sufficiently light and its self-interactions sufficiently strong, the DM can thermalize and form a superfluid in galaxies, with critical temperature of order ∼mK. The superfluid phonon excitations are assumed to be described by a MOND-like action and mediate a MONDian acceleration on baryonic matter. Superfluidity only occurs at sufficiently low temperature, or equivalently within sufficiently low-mass objects…

 

Why The Crusades Were Lost: Saint Louis’ Racism Against The Mongols!

July 9, 2017

Islam came to near annihilation in the Thirteenth Century as Franks and Mongols unified and took the Islamist capitals, Baghdad and Damascus. A little known episode. At the time, the overall Mongol Khan was a woman (another little known episode!) But she didn’t cause the problem. Instead Saint Louis’ jealous racism, and unbounded hatred of “infidels” made the difference.

Richard the Lionheart lived in France, where he was supposedly vassal to the king of France, Philip II Augustus his companion in arms (who left the so-called “Holy land” after a while, leaving his soul mate Richard, in charge). Richard may not have lost major battles. But, a century later, Saint Louis, Louis IX of France, did, and ruined France in the process.

It became clear nothing good was achieved by all this crusading. On top of that, the climate started to wobble. Instead, the French switched to the trading model with Islam (rendered possible by treaties consecutive to the Crusades). Immense fortunes were made (Jacques Coeur, born a commoner, became the richest man in France by trading with the Levant in the fifteenth century, and soon, master of the mint, and a most important European diplomat).

Arab chroniclers used the correct term, “Franki” (Franks) to qualify the Europeans trying to (re)conquer the Middle East from the religion of Islam, which had smothered it.

By the time the Crusades were launched, direct Muslim aggression against Europe has been continuous since 715 CE, a full four centuries (the word “Europe” was used first by the Franks in the context of the Muslim invasions). This continual Muslim attack was viewed, correctly, by all concerned, as the continuation of the war of Islam against Rome. (Naturally so, as the Franks so themselves as “Rome”. By 800 CE, the Franks had officially “renovated”, as they put it, the Roman empire…)

Painted in 1337 CE. Notice that the Franks are covered in armor, and the Muslims are not. Obvious technological superiority. The Romans already bought light steel helmets in Gaul! Muslim tech superiority is a lie. In plain view.

There is plenty of evidence that the Franks were more advanced than the Muslims in crucial military technology, as early as 715 CE. How could they not be? The Muslims were just coming out of savage Arabia, all the technology they had, was stolen, or, let’s say, adopted from others.

Four terracotta hand grenades, with “Greek Fire” inside, used by the defenders of Constantinople against the Turks. Greek Fire had many variants, some secret to this day. The Chinese developed dry versions, with salpeter, which turned into black powder later.

The Franks, who had been the crack troops of the Roman empire, as early as 311 CE, had better steel, better armor, better steel weapons, and giant war horses capable of wearing armor themselves. That’s why the Franks were able to defeat the Muslims, overall, in the first phase of the war with Islam, which was in Europe (711 CE, attack on Spain, until the counterattack on Jerusalem, 1099 CE).

This European technological superiority was obvious during the Spanish reconquista. An armored Spanish horse was like an intelligent, indomitable battle tank, which would charge again and again, rarely seriously wounded. By contrast, Muslim cavaliers wore little armor, their relatively small Arab horses were excellent but all too little (I used to ride my own very combative Arab stallion in Africa, which nobody else would, or could, ride… Its name, appropriately chosen, was Napoleon…).

Horse archers were not effective against heavily armored cavalry. They could bother it, but not defeat it. This is why the Mongols decided wisely not to attack the Franks again, after invading, suffering huge losses, Hungary, and Croatia. The Mongols debated what had happened to their ancestors the Huns, eight centuries earlier, in France (annihilation spared only political decision). The Mongols used rocket artillery.

Noah Smith wroteWhy Did Europe Lose the Crusades?“. Said he: “A little while ago, I started to wonder about a historical question: Why did Europe lose the Crusades? The conventional wisdom, at least as I’ve always understood it, is that Europe was simply weaker and less advanced than the Islamic Middle Eastern powers defending the Holy Land. Movies about the Crusades tend to feature the Islamic armies deploying fearsome weapons – titanic trebuchets, or even gunpowder. This is consistent with the broad historical narrative of a civilizational “reversal of fortunes” – the notion that Islamic civilization was much more highly advanced than Europe in the Middle Ages. Also, there’s the obvious fact that the Middle East is pretty far from France, Germany, and England, leading to the obvious suspicion that the Middle East was just too far away for medieval power projection.

Anyway, I decided to answer this question by…reading stuff about the Crusades. I read all the Wikipedia pages for the various crusades, and then read a book – Thomas Asbridge’s “The Crusades: The Authoritative History of the War for the Holy Land“. Given that even these basic histories contain tons of uncertainty, we’ll never really know why the Crusades turned out the way they did. But after reading up a bit, here are my takes on the main candidate explanations for why Europe ultimately lost.”

He pursue by fingering “lack of motivation” as the main cause of the loss of the Crusades. That is true, in part: Europe opened to the ocean. However, the Crusades won in important ways (opening up trade). But the Europeans also really lost, when it would have been easy to win.

Noah Smith’s analysis focuses only on the English (so to speak) aspect of the Crusades. He does not quite say that a rogue frankish army seized Constantinople in 1204 CE. And then he omits completely what happened in the Thirteenth Century (because Richard Lionhearted was then dead, and history is all about the Anglois?).

For politically correct reasons, some of them ten centuries old, some more voguish, allegations have been made of the superiority of Islam (or China, for that matter). These (often self-serving from racist self-declared anti-racists) assertions are not grounded in fact.

By 1000 CE, the Franks had the highest GDP per capita in the world, and its history. European technology was, overall, the most advanced. Europeans were stunned by how little the Chinese used machines and animals.  

The Arabic numbers were Greek numbers perfected in India, where the full zero was invented, and were reintroduced through central Asia. Out of the 160 major work of Antiquity we have, 150 survived in European monasteries, the universities of the time (and the ten remaining were saved by the Persians, initially).

The Middle East, long the cradle of most invention, has been clearly a shadow of its former self, ever since Islam established its dictator, intolerance and war friendly terrorizing culture of god obsession.

Crusades in the Middle east until 1204; The image Noah Smith uses, which misinforms the reality of what happened…

Europe didn’t “lose the Crusades”. Saint Louis did. Europe didn’t just decide the Middle East was hopeless, in all sorts of ways. Europe had got reopening of the Silk Roads from Saladin. Meanwhile in 1244, the Khwarezmians, recently pushed out by the advance of the Mongols, took Jerusalem on their way to ally with the Egyptian Mamluks. Europe shrugged (by then “Roman” emperors such as Frederick I Barbarossa had used a Muslim company of bodyguards… So there was strictly no anti-Muslim hatred and racism… contrarily to what happened with the Mongols, see below…) 

It is also true that Saint Louis, a weird mix of a dangerous religious fanatic of the worst type, and a modern, enlightened king, lost its entire army (to a woman, the only female leader Islam ever had!) in Egypt. Saint Louis was taken captive at the Battle of Fariskur where his army was annihilated. He nearly died, was saved from dysentery by an Arab physician (impressed Arabs offered for him to rule them). A huge ransom had to be paid, comparable to the French budget. Then Saint Louis died in front of Tunis, in another ridiculous crusade (1270 CE).  Louis fell ill with dysentery, and was cured by an Arab physician

The Seventh and Eight Crusades were disastrous military defeats

Saint Louis, a racist, was the direct cause of the survival of Islam. The Mongols, allied to local Franks had destroyed Baghdad (siege of the Abbasid Caliphate) and Damascus (siege of the Umayyad). The Mongols asked respectfully to make an official alliance with Christianity, and eradicate Islam.

Instead the Pope called Nestorian Christian Mongols heathens, and him and Saint Louis promised excommunication to all and any Frank joining the Mongols in war. Thus the Mongols attacked Egypt without Frankish help, and were defeated by the Mamluks Turks.

Dejected, the Mongols decided that they were Muslims (Islam has no pope, and the Caliphate had been destroyed by the Franco-Mongol alliance ) Under Timor Lame, they would carve a giant Mongol-Muslim empire all the way into India.

This is just a fraction of the common operations of the Franks and Mongols, when they were allied against the Muslims, destroying Baghdad, seizing Damascus. Saint Louis and his pet the Pope saved Islam by calling a halt to the cooperation. Mongols and Franks actually took Damascus together, and the commanders entered the conquered city, side by side…

The Spanish were more serious. They, Isabella, Ferdinand and their advisers, planned to pursue the reconquista by extirpating Islam from North Africa and the Middle East.

The extremely well-trained, battle hardened army was prepared, but then the Americas had just been discovered, and war with France for the control of the world in general and Italy in particular, became everything. Spain engaged in a war with France it took nearly two centuries to lose. The conquest of the Americas changed the world, though. The reconquest of the Christian empire from the Muslims was given up…

It could have been done: the Spanish occupied many cities of North Africa, including Algiers and Oran. Power was divided between Ottoman pirates (“Barbarossas”) and the kingdom of Tlemcen. In any case, in 1525 CE, while Cortez was conquering Central America, defeating among others, the Aztecs, pirates retook Algiers in the name of the Turk Selim 1. At the same time, Selim defeated the Egyptian Mamluks, taking control of the Levant, Mecca, and Egypt.

Islam, a pretty deleterious religion in its literal, Salafist form, survived. North Africa and the Middle East, previously long the world’s wealthiest place, is now the poorest and most war-ridden…

And the war goes on, the ideology of Salafist, literal Islam, being fundamentally antagonistic to civilization.

For the USA, the Iraq war has been an enormous victory: it boosted the price of oil for a decade, enabling the massive deployment of US fracking. Now the USA is again the world’s number one fossil fuel producer. Also French and US military forces are fighting from Mali to Afghanistan, maintaining economic and military control over an area still crucial for energy production (although it will soon become economically irrelevant, from renewable energy).  

All the regimes from Mali to Afghanistan, are, officially, friendly to civilization. So why does the war goes on? Because the ideology is islam is centered on Jihad, no holds barred. Thus Islam gives a ready ideology to those who want to make no holds barred. This is why the Turks converted to islam. Within a generation, they had invaded a huge swathe of Central Asia, and overran very old civilization: Georgia, Armenia, and the Oriental Romans (“Constantinople”).

Then Christian pilgrims going to Jerusalem were massacred (up to 10,000 at one time) by various Muslim potentates. Constantinople, having lost half of its territory, to the recently converted, ferociously invading Turks, asked the “Occidental” Roman empire to come to the rescue.   

In 1095 Pope Urban II called for the First Crusade in a sermon at the Council of Clermont. He encouraged military intervention for the so-called Byzantine Empire and its Emperor, Alexios I, who needed desperately to stop the westward invasion of the migrating Turks colonising Anatolia.

Morality of all this? What people think they know about history has little to do with what really happened. The forces presently in conflict have been in conflict ever since Islam exists, as Muhammad wanted it. The Quraish, in Mecca, the dominant tribe Muhammad belonged to, didn’t trust Muhammad: he was an analphabet and an epileptic. To boot, Muhammad succeeded in life by marrying a wealthy business woman, and then switching from caravan trading, to caravan raiding.

Just before he died, Muhammad led the first attack against the Romans (who had not attacked him, and refused combat). War is the great arbiter of human destiny. The enormous Roman field army, horrendously led erroneously, was annihilated on its third day of battle at Yarmouk against the Arab Muslim army. Emperor Heraclius, a great general had not been present, he was in Alexandria.

War is a great arbiter, but it is also extremely fickle. Crucial battles are won, and lost, which should never have been won, or lost. Sometimes by sheer happenstance, sometimes from hubris, sometimes by having top generals with top armies not considering the worst imaginable case (as happened to the Romans when fighting the Arabs at Yarmouk, or with Yamamoto at Midway, or the French mid May 1940…).

To learn from history, it has to be learned in full. Civilization missed a chance to eliminate the Islamist war ideology when it aborted the natural alliance with the Mongols. But it’s not very surprising: the overall leader of Europe, then, was Saint Louis. Saint Louis invented the modern justice system, and put his mother, Blanche de castille, in charge of France for many years. So he could be viewed as non-sexist and all for justice. He is represented to this day, rendering justice below an oak. However, Saint Louis was also a savage. He really believed that unbelievers should be killed painfully. Interestingly, Saint Louis came to believe that the Muslims were believers: his fanatical rage was oriented towards Jews and those who, in Christendom, did not believe. So it’s entirely natural that, by considering the Mongols heathens, and forbidding a further alliance with them, he would, in the end, save Islam!

It’s not just that Saint Louis burned 12,000 Jewish manuscripts in Paris, in 1243 CE (5 years before he led the disastrous Seventh Crusade). Saint Louis wrote abominable descriptions of the atrocious ways in which he would kill infidels (I read it in the original texts long ago; however, I was unable to find a source today…)

We have Jihadists around, ready to kill the innocent nowadays, because Saint Louis was actually one of them!

Patrice Ayme’

NO BEAUTY, NO IDEA!

July 3, 2017

Does creative thinking have to do with beauty? Yes it does. Mathematicians often say this, that equations, or a theory, are beautiful. But I have never come across any attempt at an explanation of why it is so. I provide the missing link here: rarity, preciousness!

Beauty Versus The Viciously Stupid Beasts:

Let me tell you a little story: for thirty years I watched four rare and endangered trees grow in a park where various animals roam (deer, raccoon, skunk, various large birds of prey, etc. A Mountain Lion was observed a kilometer away, among houses!). One of these endangered trees was a Monterey Cypress (a local, but rare tree, named after Monterey, California), another was a Yew tree (even more precious), still another a rare cedar, and another a native, but very rare now, in that area, Douglas Fir.

All those special trees had self-planted, or been planted by birds and grew on a hill next door overrun by (non-native) Blue Gum Eucalyptus and a few (non native) Monterey pines (Monterey in Mexico, not Monterey in California). I used to look at the growing Yew tree and the Monterey Cypress, and the rare cedar everyday. The city of Berkeley, which is politically correct, judged that the rare trees could only be “invasive”. They looked funny, different from Poison Oak and Eucalyptus, so they had to be invaders. 

The Yew Tree Destroyed By the PC Savages Was A Smaller, Younger Version Of That One. Beauty Shall Be Killed So Stupidity Can Rule, Say Plutocrats and their obnoxiously obsequious servants...

Poison Oak, for those who don’t know, is a plant with many different aspects, often forming impenetrable thickets, laden with the most acute carcinogen found in nature. It causes agonizing inflammation, burns readily, and inhaling its smoke, kills. Poison Oak also loves human destruction and is more present than at anytime in the Native American past. Instead of destroying endangered Yew Trees, one should destroy the square miles of Poison Oak in Berkeley…

In any case, the Politically Correct city send crews to search and destroy the four trees (located in four different places, hundreds of meters distant). They left the hundreds of Blue Gum Eucalyptus (originally from Tasmania) alone, and targeted the rare and precious conifers. Those trees were my friends.

But I shouldn’t not have been too surprised my friends got destroyed. I talked in the past with crews cutting trees, and they are so incredibly ignorant, I could bore readers with a long list of their absurdities. They view endangered trees as dangerous aliens.

While some were destroying some trees they viewed as invasive once, I asked them why they didn’t plant sequoias. They told me sequoias didn’t grow in the sun (false).

This tree cutting mania is grave: as fire chiefs point out, it augments considerably the risk of fire, as trees get replaced by chaparral.  In coastal California, trees catch fog and make rain, especially conifers. But PC cities keep on cutting. Just like they keep on calling themselves “Sanctuary Cities” when all they are, to tell the truth,  “Slave Cities”, where terrorized unlawful immigrants work quasi for free.

***

Do they hate Trump so much because, deep down inside, they’re so much like him?

This tree annihilation by the PC crowd made me reflect on the Trump hatred. Many friends I used to have make hysterically hateful discourses against Trump, and, often said even worse things against me. When I asked them why the hatred, they tended to redouble their insults and “block” me.

In retrospect, I had problems with them well before Trump appeared on their radar (Trump had been on my radar for decades, and I viewed him as the poster boy of what was wrong with US banking; I still do).

Attributing all the violence of US society to Trump is beyond ridiculous. It is beyond ridiculous, but it’s efficient, because it’s a cover-up. The violence of anti-Trump protesters is an attempt for them to pretend that they disagree with a system they profit from so much that they don’t intent to change it.

How do I know they don’t intent to change it? Because they propose nothing new. (For example Obamacare does not work, but democrats don’t have a replacement plan; result: Republicans argue among themselves!)

***

NO BEAUTY, NO IDEA:

The violence perpetrated against beautiful trees by Politically Correct cities in parks which are supposed to be natural is a tell tale sign. Anybody with a sane mind would stop before destroying obviously rare trees. But not here: they are searched, and destroyed. What is the mood behind that?

Is there in the USA, more of a desire to search for beauty, and destroy it, than, say in more civilized places? Could it be that this is related to the fact that the US enjoys an extremely ugly healthcare system, an even uglier tax system, the highest incarceration rate, and the highest birth death rate among advanced countries?

Could that also be related to the fact so many of my friends turn against me well before they became conscious of Trump? After all, like those trees, I was different. So I had to be cut down.

How could this psychological mechanism work exactly? Anything beautiful is beautiful because it’s rare. Anything rare does not belong in the herd, except if it is the leader. But, in some countries, herd following is valued more than in others. Now here is the rub: any really new thought is initially not just rare, but infuriating to those who didn’t think of it first.

Hence any society which does not have a great sense and appreciation of beauty, of what is rare, does not have a great sense and appreciation of the human spirit.

***

Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer, Ein USA!

In many ways, the USA is the world’s most conservative country: Trump is no accident, but a system. US has led on CO2 pollution since ever. The USA clings, alone in the world, to obsolete units of measurements from the Middle Ages. But, most of all, among advanced countries, it clings to the idea of “leaders”. European… leaders were a bit taken aback when they went to Camp David, and Obama and his goons referred to them as “leaders”, in an obsessive manner. “Leader”. Shall we translate “Leader” in German?

Leader (ˈliːdəʳ  ) noun

  1. Führer m (Führerin) (f)
    1. [of union, party] Vorsitzende m f (Vorsitzender) (m adj)
      1. (military) Befehlshaber m (Befehlshaberin) (f)
    2. [of gang, rebels] Anführer m (Anführerin) (f)
    3. [of expedition, project, choir] Leiter m (Leiterin) (f)
      1. (sport, in league) Tabellenführer m

The USA is Führer obsessed. Young people in the USA, in the Space cadet mentality, better take a leadership school if they want to be esteemed by all sorts of authorities. Outward Bounds, Scouts, NOLS (National Outdoors Leadership School), etc

Here is Zuck, the Facebook Führer. Zuck says: Facebook is new church where “Leaders set the culture, inspire us, give us a safety net, and look out for us.”

Facebook will give people a sense that they are part of “something bigger than ourselves” akin to a religion. A religion where the showing of the human female breast brings exclusion. As I said, the US is a very conservative country. And Zuck Zuck his prophet. Zuck Zuck has beaucoup brains, he looks out for us:

As I’ve traveled around and learned about different places, one theme is clear: Every great community has great leaders. Think about it. A church doesn’t just come together. It has a pastor who cares for the well-being of their congregation, makes sure they have food and shelter.”

Amen, Zuck Zuck. (Because he pays little taxes, Zuck Zuck is a very great man working for CIA, so as we wait for him to become also president as another great CIA puppet-men did, one gives hospitals his name…)

This is all pretty ugly, and it’s no wonder that, of all countries, since 1990, the USA has been the most ardent defender of fossil fuels. Because getting rid of fossil fuels was a new idea… And great undermining great US superiority. (Add the college dropouts.)

***

The idea that we need leaders to think, get inspired and see is the very crux of the plutocratic mood: 

Zuck Zuck Zuckerberg is not just a parody, he is a paradigm. Only leaders can provide with the culture, the inspiration, the safety, and looking out for us. Because, presumably, we have no eyes to look out with.

This means that a few college dropouts like Zuckerberg, Gates, Jobs, Branson (recently hosting Obama on one of his private islands), Ellison (Oracle, owner of the sixth largest island in the Hawai’i archipelago), Dell, Ted Turner, the first of all the Rothschild never went to school. Such ignoramuses are supposed to lead the world. And lead they do, and did. College dropout and Nazi startup genius, Henry Ford, was the first, and crucial financier of the Nazi Party…Hitler owed Ford everything, and let it be known.

The whole strength of democracy is that ideas come from the multitude, all the brains in parallel. That’s what made Athens incomparable: 80,000 could debate with each other, think back and forth. The Achaemenid Persian empire, although ultramodern and remarkable in many ways, had too few thinkers and they were afraid to think aloud. China, overall, had the same problem, especially under the unifying emperor Qin, who had a liking for burning books and burying scholars.

Intellectual fascism got even worse under hyper Catholic Rome, circa 400 CE; in both cases, books were burned as if there were no tomorrow. It’s no coincidence that Rome and China got crazy roughly at the same time, in the same way (Rome knew of China very well, and we have reports of Chinese visitors singing the praises of Rome)…

Calling to be led by leaders in matter of culture, inspiration, safety and even vision, as Facebook wants to do, is as ugly as it gets, it tells people creative individual thinking is a sin. It tells them new ideas should not sprout.

***

A new idea is rare: so rare, because it never existed before. And it is precious. “Precious” comes from the latin for expensive, costly. How costly? Because the brain uses up to 43% of the energy a human being consumes. Thus a new idea, a new organization of some networks in the brain is costly in energy, it’s precious, hence beautiful…

Patrice Ayme’

We War, Or We Are Not: Chimpanzees On Patrol

June 29, 2017

WAR AS “COLLECTIVE INTENTIONALITY” IN CHIMPANZEES, And HOW:

Most advanced animals are territorial. (It’s also true at sea: that was discovered with Orcas, Killer Whales, recently: the high sea races don’t mix genetically and culturally with the land-hugging races!)

Where does this territoriality come from? Researchers have no guesses. I do: it’s as simple as supposing that animals are smart. I run through the woods all the time among dangerous animals, and I can see them thinking fast, across many species, and adjusting their attitude accordingly.

It’s easy to see why, economically speaking, territoriality should arise. Economy means: environmental management. At this point many feel like writing a few equations that would justify everything, and such equations have been written, and those who wrote them achieved fame.

Equations tie concepts together. Concepts which can be measured. However, one has to be careful. The case of gravitation is famous. The master equation, call it Einstein’s equation, says:

Curvature = Mass-Energy

As Einstein himself pointed out, the right hand-side is not well-defined. However, one can still draw non-trivial consequences from it. But do those “prove” the equation? No.

Posing With That Special Attitude Can Speak Louder Than Words!

Researchers used 20 years of data from Ngogo in Uganda to explore collective action in chimpanzees.

When male chimpanzees patrol the boundaries of their territories they walk silently in single file.

Normally chimps are noisy: it’s a deliberate tactic to scare everybody. But on patrol they’re like silent death. They sniff the ground and stop to listen for sounds. Their cortisol and testosterone levels are jacked 25 percent higher than normal. Chances of contacting conspecific enemies are high: 30 percent.

Ten percent of patrols result in violent fights where they hold victims down and bite, tear, hit, kick and stomp them to death. It has been observed that a chimpanzee tribe could completely annihilate one next door.

The result of these savage acts of war? A large, safe territory rich with food, longer lives, and new young females wandering into the group.

Territorial boundary patrolling by chimpanzees is one of the most dramatic forms of collective action in mammals. Patrolling, and killing, together benefits the group, whether individual chimps took part in the action, or not.

Some Chimps In The ASU Study, While On Patrol

A team — led by Arizona State University Assistant Professor Kevin Langergraber of the School of Human Evolution and Social Change and the Institute of Human Origins — examined 20 years of data on who participated in patrols in a 200-member-strong Ngogo community of chimpanzees in Kibale National Park, Uganda.

Males joined 33 percent of patrols that occurred when they were in the group and young enough to take part. Young females have been observed to join patrols.

The behavior is evidence of what’s called group augmentation theory. What is good for the group is ultimately good for the individual. Some sacrifice from each member translates into a larger, safer group. By 2009, the Ngogo chimpanzees expanded their territory by 22 percent over the previous decade.

“Free riders may increase their short-term reproductive success by avoiding the costs of collective action,” Langergraber’s team wrote, “but they do so at the cost of decreasing the long-term survival of the group if it fails to grow or maintain its size; nonparticipants suffer this cost alongside the individuals they had cheated.”

“Cost” though, is a human concept tied to record keeping.

Chimpanzees are one of the few mammals in which inter-group warfare is a major source of mortality. Chimps in large groups have been reported to kill most or all of the males in smaller groups over periods of months or even many years, acquiring territory in the process. Territorial expansion can lead to the acquisition of females who bear multiple infants. It also increases the amount of food available to females in the winning group, increasing their fertility.

The researchers found no consequences for those chimpanzees that did not join patrols (but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist). Most studies have focused on short term benefits of cooperation, said lead researcher Kevin Langergraber, “but our study shows the benefit of long-term data collection, and also that we still have a lot to learn from these chimpanzees.”

Male chimpanzees remain in the group they were born in their entire lives (females wander to settle somewhere else). Because they can live for more than 50 years, patrolling when they’re young produces personal future benefits.

However, if they don’t patrol, there aren’t any consequences — no sidelong glances, snubs or being chased out of the group, claims anthropologist David Watts of Yale University, who worked with Langergraber on the study.

“We know from a lot of theoretical and empirical work in humans and in some other specialized, highly cooperative societies — like eusocial insects — that punishment by third parties can help cooperation evolve,” Watts said. “But it doesn’t seem to us that chimpanzees punish individuals who do not patrol. Sometimes individuals will be present when a patrol starts, and thus have the opportunity to join the patrol but fail to do so. As far as we can see, these individuals do not receive any sort of punishment when this occurs.”

Chimpanzees are extremely intelligent, but usually they aren’t considered to be capable of what’s called “collective intentionality,” which allows humans to have mutual understanding and agreement on social conventions and norms.

“They undoubtedly have expectations about how others will behave and, presumably, about how they should behave in particular circumstances, but these expectations presumably are on an individual basis,” Watts said. “They don’t have collectively established and agreed-on social norms.”

What Watts seems to want to say is that he didn’t see punishment. Thus, he says, there is no enforcement of norms. Thus there are no norms. Thus norms were not collectively established.

There are several problems with this reasoning. First all is not stick: there is also the carrot. A chimp may not be punished, but them he may lost opportunity. One opportunity lost? The pleasure of the hunt of the biggest game, fellow chimp, the pleasure of killing.

To expects animals establish norms as we do is, with all due respect, a bit silly. They do it, as we do when we don’t have language at our disposal.

“… this tendency of humans to cooperate in large groups and with unrelated individuals must have started somewhere,” Watts said. “The Ngogo group is very large (about 200 individuals), and the males in it are only slightly more related to one another than to the males in the groups with which they are competing. Perhaps the mechanisms that allow collective action in such circumstances among chimpanzees served as building blocks for the subsequent evolution of even more sophisticated mechanisms later in human evolution.”

Yes, sure. And what are these mechanisms? Can we imagine them?

We know how WE do it in civilization, and the million of years before that: we talk. We talk digitally, enabling us to communicate extremely precise information: this is the interest of equations.

What did we do before digital speech? Well we could whistle and do other sounds… which animals readily understand: a whining sound in humans of the sort my seven-year old daughter is expert at when she wants cake, is readily understood by a dog from 100 feet away. And by another 500 species besides.

There are other languages: action, gestures… They can vary. Most animals though, understand man is the top dog. I have been charged by bull elks, weighing 1,000 pounds, horns down, until they realized I was no mountain lion. Similarly, a bear or lion will immediately be reminded of human supremacy, from just the proper attitude. Then they instantaneously deduce they should moderate their rage, hunger, and other animals spirits inhabiting them.

The point is that they reason. They fear humans not “instinctively”, but because they were taught, by parents, or circumstances. Chimpanzees are also taught. From their first months on Earth. Then they deduce, in particular, friend from foe. Friends are in the tribe, foes are not in the tribe.

When I run in a National Park, all the dangerous animals out there, even the dangerous snakes, not just the bears, lions and various ungulates, know who I am, even before meeting me in person. They also know what a creature such as me is expected to do: left alone, I, and my ilk, will leave them alone.

So the missing link is that animals spent a lot of time thinking: their lives depend upon it.

“Collective Intentionality” results from all this collective thinking out of the same initial conditions. Chimps, from the earliest ager, learn that defending their traditional fruit trees enable them to survive, because they need to eat, to survive. And so on… It’s basic neurogenesis…

Patrice Ayme’

Entangled Minds, Entangled Knowledge

June 27, 2017

HOW DOES THINKING WORK? Not straight, and beyond twisted!

Does thinking work linearly? No, not at all. Linear logic is how mathematics is presented to the masses. Yet, research mathematicians do not proceed that way the first time they figure out theorems. Mathematicians typically work out explicit baby examples, and then try to generalize, guided by these particulars; physicists do the same; they are all following the same method used by all small children!

Not only is linear logic not really the way the mind explains things to itself, but there is plenty of evidence that even what are viewed as the foundation of basic logics need to be discarded, if one wants to understand the way things are really understood.

What’s below is increasingly supported by neuroscience. The brain “connectome” is ever more important. As I have said in the past, it lives (so to speak) in high dimensional space. Plato had a two-dimensional wall and a three-dimensional world. But now we understand dimensions better!

This illustrates a research article on the importance of the Brain “Connectome”, a much more general spaces than those used to depict experiments in Quantum Physics

A professional philosopher opined in Aeon that Indian philosophy which is more than 3,000 year old compared knowledge to a banyan tree, whereas Western philosophy just said it was a vulgar tree as they are known in Europe, with a single trunk. Silly stuff, because, in any case, knowledge is a forest (knowledge of how to write haikus, or making beer, has nothing to do with ship hull construction!)  

Silly stuff, because we have learned so much more in the meantime! Overall the philosophy of 35 centuries ago can carry a long way, indeed: all our civilization rests on it. Indian mathematicians completed the so-called “Arabic numerals” which they got from the Greeks in a very tentative form. Actually the origins of writing and counting systems are probably 8,000 years old (that we know of; counting animals, and communicating that, is probably a basic hunting skill hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of years old).

Lots of thinking has enabled, meanwhile, to establish certain knowledge which we can know reverberates towards general wisdom. “Certain knowledge” is another word for science.

***

So several points, in  support of the ENTANGLED MIND, as the state-of-the-art of civilization has it:

First modern logic (post Turing) shows that a logic can pretty much be anything. None of the axioms viewed as mandatory in the past are actually necessary: even allowing (A and Non-A) works.

Second, how is that wealth of logics possible, and still we call them logics? The answer is simple: logic is actually neurology, and neurology is a collection of sets of networks in what physicists call a “configuration space”. In neuroscience this is now called the “Connectome”. In Quantum Mechanics, those spaces are Hilbert Space. In neurology, hence logics, those spaces are much more general. In any case, at the very least, the topology of these neurologies and logics is not simply connected. Here is your banyan tree, 35 centuries old, as mathematical concept:  

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simply_connected_space

Unions of banyan trees and the ground they arise from, are not simply connected. Well beyond that, thinking is a superbly high dimensional activity involving extravagant topologies and geometries: 

Many, many dimensions therein this “connectome”!

Third, evolution itself is not simply connected. All sorts of genetic messages go this way and that, across species. Co-evolution of species actually show that beyond the evolution and co-evolution of species and the ecological niches they evolve, what matters most is the evolution of traits inside ecological systems. Yes, quite a bit as in the movies “Avatar”!

https://www.nature.com/news/biodiversity-moves-beyond-counting-species-1.22079

Or, more generally, the co-evolution which matters most is that of the traits of ecosystems.

Quantum Physics posits that reality is much more, infinitely more, than multifaceted. Reality is not just multispecified, but multispacified. Indeed, each quantum experiment defined well enough to exist posits the existence of a Hilbert space. Each different experiment has a different Hilbert space. Some can be two-dimensional, some can be infinite dimensional. Measuring a quantity is identified to an “operator” inside said Hilbert space.

Science is certain knowledge. But it is subject to circumstances, conditions and context. In a sense, it is more important how we established sciences and guess new ones. We don’t need yesteryear’s quaint concepts. Too much knowing nothing kills better thinking (Internet civilization, as it is, is going nowhere intelligent.) Example: Monads (- single entities) exist, say those infused with obsolete philosophy. Instead, we moderns have the quantum & neurological networks!

There all the interconnections of the human mind, its incredible spaces of immensely complex topologies and geometries come in play mixing logics, pathos, ethos, wishful thinking and metaprincipled stances within, and against, the universe.    

“The Greeks are barbarians,” said the Garga Samhita, a Sanskrit text on the life of Krishna, “yet the science of astronomy originated with them and for this they must be reverenced like Gods.

The Greeks invented astronomy, precisely because they were rough. Passions lift the spirits, after resting them in their vigorous embrace.  The Gods are barbarian, just go out there in nature, listen to thunder roll, and tremble.

Patrice Ayme’

 

Consciousness Divided

June 13, 2017

The Ancient Greeks recommended to examine life. Actually, Homo is an examiner. The examiner. Homo finds out about the world, thus becomes powerful. Part of the world, what we see the world through, is ourselves, though. So examining the world means examining ourselves.

(Famously, to establish Quantum Mechanics, Niels Bohr and his “Copenhagen School”, pondered what it was, for human beings to experiment.)

I mountain run. Alone. A good occasion to study how the human mind works. And I found something I feel is interesting about the problem of consciousness: it’s much more divided, multiple and hierarchized, than is generally assumed.

Mountain running is one of the great dangerous sports out there, and the one most eminently human. Human superiority over other beasts, which is undeniable, was founded upon mountain running. Why running? Because only Homo can run in full heat all day long, catching up with dogs (who have a poor cooling system) and even horses (capable of more perspiration than dogs, but still not as good as humans). This helped make humans the ultimate predators.

Why calling running out there in the wilderness mountain running? Because wilderness running, except on a beach, is always on very broken-up ground. There were no roads, for the last 100 million years, when our forebears learned to run. But plenty of holes dug by ground squirrels, even on the prairie, in which to break one’s leg.

The first challenge in running mountainous terrain, is that the ground is full of rocks, roots, and loose terrain (by definition). This has all to be processed well and faster than any supercomputer can. Failure will be ignominious, potentially lethal. I remember that trail I ran on many times where, once, in a three weeks span, two women fell off it, and died.

Fly Over Country: When the Rattler Is Across the Trail, And They Tend To Be Across Trails, One Second Away, You Take-Off, And Fly Over, Or You Die! A full bite from the rattler below, Crotalus Oreganus, from the genus Viperidae, will make you unconscious in 15 seconds.

In the last month I hit two branches from above (one from a poisonous vine). In another incident, I slipped on a loose slope, accidentally catching a root with my right hand while falling, breaking two bones, tearing three tendons with bone attached, etc. The soles of my shoes had become too smooth. This was the result of a fraction of a second of deficient logic (I had to observe the root, which I didn’t, and anticipate what would happen if I slipped, which I vaguely anticipated, and caught the root). The surgeon said I will never fully recover, and it will take ten weeks anyway.

Death can occur in other ways: lightning (which I experienced too close many times) and wasps and their kinds. Two years ago, I was stung more than 40 times in a swarm attack, from a non-identified nest. I ran out… Having decided that was the best strategy (supposedly running is not advised with snakebite).

Yeah, I still mountain run (but more carefully, considering the state of my multiply fractured right hand, although I nearly impaled myself with a perfidious sharp brown redwood branch lying on the brown sequoia redwood forest floor! You put your foot on such a branch, it sticks up, you die…).

The first problem with mountain running is to have a brain which can process the unfolding ground fast enough to know where to land one’s feet, and affect overall balance. On the sort of stupid track common sport activist favor, any step is similar to the one before: one could run blind. However, on a mountain trail, every step is different and tricky, and there will be several such hazardous steps per second. Tripping on a sharp rock and crashing head first on another will kill  the runner.

A related problem is the deeply existential question of snakes. If you are ten miles out in a forest with 100 meters tall trees, deep in a twisting canyon, out of phone range and you encounter a viper, you will have to think quickly. Rattlesnakes can be huge: up to seven feet long! (I saw one once around that sort of length across a trail; since it refused to move, I interpreted that as aggression, I threw him two stones, two hits, and it fled to the side, threatening from the bushes rattling away… I do not attack vipers which get away, but will punish aggressive behavior!) Actually, if you are moving at three meters per second, when coming upon a rattler across the trail, you will have to take off, faster than a pelican, and hope to fly over the startled reptile before it can know where to strike (I did this once; arriving a four meters per second on a twisting single track, with impossible terrain right and left, I found a large rattlesnake in the middle of the trail, and jumped over it; by the way, baby rattlers are also lethal).

When I run, part of my brain is on a constant snake watch. However, a root, or a branch can well look like a snake, and, at sustained speeds up to 20 feet per second (6 m/s), as when descending, something interesting happens. When the snake watch system identifies a plausible snake, it immediately gives avoidance orders to the neuron motor system, the balance system, and the neurohormonal system. Consciousness itself, gets informed from the sudden modification of trajectory, and some neurohormonal effects having to do with activating attention circuitry which are even faster than a massive adrenalin shock (which itself takes about one second). At that point, consciousness knows a snake alert is underway, and dread prevails. Before consciousness gets aware of anything at all, there is actually a suppression effect. Probably because all central nervous system power has to be mobilized, consciousness first shuts down, as all ongoing processes get instantaneously stopped.

Then the visual system turns on to the max to identify the threat and find where the head could be. Consciousness follows to find out whether that’s more probably a root or a snake.

I have observed this effect thousands of times, having found myself avoiding potential snakes thousands of times. (My latest close call with a rattler was three feet, three weeks ago, it was going away while rattling in thick grass, didn’t see it; I walk heavy through grass to alert the beasts.)

This clearly shows that consciousness role is that of a supervisor. The time I had to jump over that snake, I detected it 5 meters away, a second away. Consciousness had no time to get involved, but higher level processing determined instantaneously that there was no possibility of braking, and the only hope was to jump above an animal which can strike so fast, high-speed photography is needed to catch the action. Then I had to land on the other side. By the time full consciousness returned, the danger was passed.   

***

Consciousness Divided:

Some will sneer: what did you prove? That there are parts of the brain reacting automatically? That there are reflexes, instinct? A reptilian brain, as the saying has it? An unconscious mind?

All those terms are time-honored, yet vague. And they don’t fit what is really perceived: actually, the point is that there is consciousness involved, a sort of ultrafast consciousness, not deliberative consciousness, but consciousness nevertheless.

A proof is this: if one stops concentrating on the trail, one crashes very quickly. Actually higher level decisions about where to go have to be taken all the time: imagine running in a boulder field from metric ton block to metric ton block. You will have to decide continuously where to land next, and how, while anticipating a few moves after that. 

Let me repeat slowly: It’s more “divided consciousness” than “unconscious mind”. It only LOOKS “unconscious” because most of it is not recorded in short-term memory.

As I said, the proof is that one needs to stay concentrated while running. That’s crucial. So actually the frontal cortex elaborating strategies is not on vacation. If not building up strategies for the next two seconds, one crashes, and pretty fast, and pretty bad. Potentially lethally…

Thus, although part of the mind can wander, there is definitively extreme consciousness of the terrain as it unfolds. Why? High level strategies have to be investigated and deployed, often with a time horizon of less than two seconds. For example in descent the terrain has to be analyzed carefully (which I didn’t do enough of when I broke my hand…) The terrain has to be used to brake and chose the best trajectories getting oneself where one wants to go, without too much accelerations, or terrain which is too hard, or too soft, or too sharp, or potential collision with various objects, on the ground or in the air (branches), unknowable dark ground to be avoided, bushes not to be approached too much less an ambushing snake lurks, etc…

Simply all this intense mental activity is not registered even in short-term memory, most of the time. It’s pure consciousness, no strings attached. Meanwhile, the rest of consciousness can roam, but when a serious problem arises, like a looming snake, all of it concentrates on said problem, right away, and with a computing power never used in normal life.

***

Examining Life Thoroughly Means Questioning Existence, Best Done In Extreme Situations:

So we are supposed to examine life. But what is it to examine? It means considering what was not considered before, getting out of set neural patterns. And doing this deliberately, forcefully. And nothing beats a life and death motivation. One can do this by activating the flight or fight neurology. Socrates had killed four men in combat. He was also famous by the courageous fighting he did, covering a retreat of the army, after a disastrous Athenian defeat at Potidea, 33 years before his execution, saving the life of the wounded Alcibiades, pierced by an arrow, in the process. Also Socrates had “loved” everybody, for decades, Plato said… So much so, adds Plato, that led Socrates to a wise abstinence later.

To examine, we have to embrace all that can be embraced, take it all in consideration. That does not mean visiting all the restaurants, and jetting around the world. It means a rich and diverse wealth of experiences. And extreme, and in particularly extremely dangerous ones, are an indispensable part of the mix.

An amusing aside, then, is that some of the individuals engaging in the most dangerous hare-brain pursuit, are, deep down inside, motivated by the examination of life, which is at the core of the essence of the genus Homo. It’s hilarious to think that some of the most apparently dim-witted brutes (like your average Jihadist) are thus motivated by the nobility of the human spirit, but so it is!  

I think, therefore I am? Not so simple! What is “I”, if “I” is multiple, as a method of division of work, evolutionary selected?

Consciousness is not only experienced dependent, but a much divided experience. Some will say: we knew this already, aren’t we multitasking already? What I tried to show above is something different. Just as there is the ship of state, there is the ship of mind. There may a captain to the soul, sometimes, but it has also a crew. With a mind of its own.

Patrice Ayme’