Posts Tagged ‘Mercifulness’

Mercifulness: The Smart Way Out Of Violence

January 13, 2021

When a situation gets real bad, good people work to make it better. To do this, forgiveness helps. This is one thing Catholicism got right (and it was duplicated later in Islam: Allah declares he is “merciful” every time he reaches some oftentime gory conclusion). 

Those motivated by the Dark Side, though, will make a bad situation worse… because such is the royal road to their abode, hell… Or a good situation bad: “Democrats” got control of the government, a time for reform, if reform was really what they are after. Instead it seems that what they are after is making a bad situation worse. An excuse to do nothing.. Obviously what their sponsors want.

***

To progress, one sometimes need to shake things up. Mandela, as he said himself, “was not a saint”. But is a devil saintly when a devil is what is needed to make saintly work?

I am a devilish philosopher, not a simple coyote. I don’t howl with the others, just because they howl all together now. Throughout history, coyotes have howled one way, and philosophers have not heeded the call, making themselves unpopular with the four legged. There were deaths in my family in the past, from racism, strife, fascism. I had plenty of time to think what it means, and how to avoid this kind of nefarious evolution. I embrace, for real, the Mandela approach, of truth and reconciliation, not the fundamental historical American approach of violence and sheer force, after carefully analyzing how to make the situation as bad as possible… That strategy, pretty much institutionalized in the USA, favors the wealthiest and most powerful. It is also why the USA ended with the worst civil war known (yes, it was worse than the worst of the French Revolution, “1793”, by an order of magnitude).

***

When Mandela was imprisoned on Rat Island, he learned Afrikaner… the language of his enemy. Mandela, an ex-boxer, then a lawyer turned violent freedom fighter, and leader of an African National Congress which took the turn towards violence under him, had the time; he spent 27 years in prison. Mandela turned to the violent struggle (bombs, attacks with firearms, etc.) after, he said, the government left the ANC no choice. The ANC was financed by the Soviet Union. Mandela was removed from the United States “Terror Watch List” by Bush in July 2008… After his presidency of South Africa. 

Mandela was an astute observer of how violence grows: he had been in the thick of it, and was very lucky to survive it [1]. He also knew that good people sometimes have to turn violent, compelled by the circumstances (“the government left us no choice, we had to turn to violence”…). How do you break the cycle?

With truth. 

Truth leads to reconciliation, if it is nothing but bare truth, and all the truth. Mandela set up a “Truth and Reconciliation Commission”. It worked.  

Patrice Ayme

***

[1] Mandela did not just survive because he was intelligent, but also because those he confronted were intelligent enough to understand him, and thus forgive him. At some point the (white, Afrikaner) president of racist South Africa proposed to forgive Mandela… If Mandela officially renounced violence as legitimate. Mandela refused to condemn violence as inappropriate. He spent several more years in prison. Then the South African government accepted all of Mandela’s conditions.

SMART IGNORANCE, DARK NAIVETY, Enlightened Hatred

May 16, 2016

Sorry for those who cling to the notion of “Politically Correct” like rats do, with a sinking ship. This title is probably rather discombobulating for them. I will justify it thereafter. Yes, it can be smart to ignore much. Yes, it can be cruel and vicious to be naïve. Yes, it can be enlightened, to hate.

Yet, what does the Dark Side thinks of the text “Vous n’aurez pas ma haine/You will not have my hatred”? Does it smirk? Or does it approve of the text, totally? Surely, the latter. The technique advised by Leiris, a selective shut down of one’s mental, not to say neurological, system, is a basic functionality the Dark Side needs to operate, selective attention. There are indeed, neurological reasons for it.

Leiris’ text explores, advocates and celebrates, a crucial, actually life saving, strategy. It is a neurophilosophical approach. That is a neurological approach endorsed by the most sophisticated philosophy, as I will explain presently.

One can go much beyond what La Rochefoucauld smartly observed, more than three centuries ago.

All & Any Human Behavior Can, & Should, Be Used In All The Many Ways Circumstances May Require, For The Greater Good, Of The Greatest Sentience.

All & Any Human Behavior Can, & Should, Be Used In All The Many Ways Circumstances May Require, For The Greater Good, Of The Greatest Sentience.

The key observation is that one can be of many minds, on many things. More exactly, the brain can, and has to, use different Modi Operandi, according to circumstances.

***

The American People Is Too Naïve For Adult Material:

Is the preceding too ethereal, theoretical, vaporous, nothing to do with day-to-day reality? President Bush, the invader of Iraq, removed 28 pages of the official report on the 9/11 attack. Why? CIA Director John Brennan appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press”, on May 1, 2016, arguing that the 28 pages should not be released because the American people are incapable of evaluating them. Americans are incapables.

Brennan explained: “I think some people may seize upon that uncorroborated, unvetted information that was in there that was basically just a collation of this information that came out of FBI files, and to point to Saudi involvement, which I think would be very, very inaccurate.” High caste Saudis, of course had nothing to do with 9/11, as demonstrated by the fact that Bush ran several flights to allow them to flee the USA when no plane was allowed to fly, inside, or out of the US.

Brennan in his stupidity, let it slip by denying it: it is known Saudi “civil servants” seem to have help the Islamists of 9/11. That would be no surprise: the SIA and CIA activated Bin Laden, and launched him as a terrorist.

Not only naivety has a Dark Side, but it can be imposed on We The People.

***

Forgetfulness Can Be A Lifesaver:

When one fights for survival, nothing should matter to the brain, but for activity conducive to said survival. Neurological concentration on the situation can become close to 100%.

What happens in ultra emergency? Time stretches, while the brain mobilizes well beyond 100% (namely neurons, including motor neurons obviously work beyond their normal maximum. Thus superhuman strength and reflexes). The brain is fully in survival mode, and has no thought considered, only strategy implemented. Even sensations not useful for survival are not felt, especially pain.

This is what Mr. Leiris advocates, on the mental level. He excludes from his mind all what is not conducive to provide his son with what the baby needs, a maximally loving environment, even in harrowing circumstances. .

Had I been exactly in Antoine Leiris’ circumstances, I would have actually embraced the same mental strategy. I know, because I have already been in similar circumstances, where my mind had to concentrate absolutely: I was caught in avalanches twice, and saved my life through action which was nothing short of incredible, and resulted from extreme mental concentration. Once, an improvised Explosive Device was thrown on me by some fascists and exploded on a gentleman just in front, who acted as an unwitting human shield. from terrorism.

Why? Because at this point the brain has become god, master of life and death. Its mission is only about survival, whether insuring that of the brain, or the termination of the survival of the adversary. How does the brain focus on survival? It decides what the universe is. And it operates with an extremely simplified version of the universe, and not just of the universe of consideration. The brain also admits only a simplified version of the universe of sensation. The universe of sensations which matters for survival. The rest plain does not exist, because it is outright not perceived.

***

Naivety Is Part Of The Dark Side:

Naivety can be very useful. But naivety can also kill, has killed, and nearly got me a few times. Naivety is what enables much nefariousness to produce evil industrially. Reconsider Mr. Brennan, the CIA chief, above: why is he allowed to think We The People are a bunch of unteachable idiots, hopelessly infantile, a danger to ourselves, while keeping his job?

In “You will not have my hatred“, Mr. Leiris says that, sometimes, hatred is better left out of it. Is that a new idea? No. The idea is actually central to Christiano-Islamism.

Ironically, the Qur’an reminds us every few lines that “Allah is merciful” (however, it’s not clear we should be merciful too). That obsession, that Allah forgives all day long, was directly inherited from Christianism… Where, indeed, the faithful has to be merciful.

As there is much I dislike in Islamism and Christianism, does this mean I dislike all their concepts? Far from it. I actually love a beautiful mosque or church.

And I love mercifulness. Not just because it’s pretty, but also because it’s necessary.

I think mercifulness is totally fundamental. Mercifulness is not just wise: it’s a fundamental part of the behavior of any social animal. It’s a code to correct errors. A small human group could not function without an error correcting code. The name of that code is mercifulness.

But does that mean that hatred unworthy always? No. Far from it.

***

And what does “hatred” consists of, anyway?

Let’s suppose something that has happened before, on more than one continent: Patrice is out there, trying to terminate a cockroach infestation. Cockroaches are smart, fast and flat: they can squeeze in the smallest crack in the blink of an eye. So here I am, trying to kill lots of cockroaches, in all sizes from one millimeter to several centimeters. Am I animated by hatred? No. I am just concentrated on all the possibilities, the thinnest cracks. So, to commit mass murder, hatred is not necessary.

So what does hatred consist of? When is it called for? Why is it so bad? Well, the answers are rather surprising.

Hatred is called for, when it is needed. Hatred does not happen by accident. Hatred is, often a supplement of passion needed for an otherwise unsavory task. Faced with something objectively really bad, hatred is not called for. No need for hatred to eliminate mosquitoes. Hatred is needed when other passions are in the way, and these passions prevent the accomplishment of what is viewed, deep down, as a necessary task. For example, when common sense and decency are in the way. But not only. It could be love which is preventing the accomplishment of a needed task.

For example, the Nazis needed hatred to launch the Second World War. They needed the hatred to overwhelm decency, basic common sense, and whatever humanity they still harbored. However, as the war went on, the attitude of the top Nazis, say towards the French, changed. The Nazis did not need hatred anymore: the war was long launched, and was not going well. However, hatred was now in the way of many behaviors the Nazis needed to see deployed such as decency, mercifulness, common sense, humanity… and the more so, the more the war was turning against them. Well before the end, the top Nazis started to disobey Hitler’s orders.

In the end, even Himmler negotiated with the Swedes to save… Jews (they saved thousands!). It’s not just that Himmler was trying to save his precious skin from the cyanide pill in his mouth. It’s also that hatred was not needed anymore.

Hatred against the Islamist Pseudo State is obviously not needed. There is no love, decency, or common sense in the way, which we need to overcome, to accomplish the task at hand. Eradication will be plenty enough.

Finally, the president should tell the CIA that it is naïve, haughty and cruel,  to consider the American People too naïve, ignorant and malevolent, for the truth, while hoping that they are going to  live with that contempt and the trampling of their right to know, much longer.

Patrice Ayme’

***

 

“You Will Not Have My Hatred”

May 14, 2016

Six months ago, the Wahhabist attacks in Paris killed and wounded 500. The number of victims to get financial compensation from the state is now 2,500. A young mother, one of many, including many that some would define as “Muslims”, was killed at the Bataclan, a well-known theater, where a Californian band was performing. She was perforated by bullets. Her husband of 12 years, Antoine Leiris, was watching at home their 17 months old son. The world has been talking about Antoine Leiris’ mood and system of thought.

Hours after the tragedy, Antoine Leiris posted the following touching and admirable thoughts and feelings on Facebook, which became “viral”:

“Friday night you stole the life of a being of exception, the love of my life, the mother of my son. But you will not have my hatred. I don’t know who you are and I don’t want to know it, you’re dead souls. If this God for whom you kill blindly, made us in his image, then every bullet in the body of my wife will have been a wound in his heart.

So no. I won’t make you the gift of hating you. You looked for it well, yet to respond to your hatred by anger would be giving in to the same ignorance that has made you what you are. You want me to be afraid, you want me to look at my fellow citizens with suspicion, that I sacrifice my freedom for security. You lost. The same player is still playing.

Helene Muyal Leiris with Her Son Shortly Before She Was Assassinated By Islamists In Paris

Helene Muyal Leiris with Her Son Shortly Before She Was Assassinated By Islamists In Paris

I saw her this morning. At last, after nights and days of waiting. She was as beautiful as when she left that Friday night, as beautiful as when I fell head over heels in love with her more than 12 years ago. Of course I’m devastated by grief. I’ll grant this small victory, but it will not last long. I know she will be with us every day and that we will meet again in this paradise of free souls that you’ll never have access to.

We are two, my son and me, but we are stronger than all the armies of the world. I do not have anymore time to devote to you, I have to be with Melvil who is waking up from his nap. He is barely seventeen months old. He is going to eat his afternoon snack, as he does everyday. Then we will play as we do everyday, and during his entire life, this little boy will make you the affront to be happy and free. Because no, you will not have his hatred either.”

Antoine Leiris

***

For the original French version, see Facebook “Vous N’Aurez Pas Ma Haine”.

Mr. Leiris has now a vocal version of his message, and has been spreading his philosophy.

***

So what do I think of this?

Sometimes, silence is the best discourse. Respect, sometimes, is best. But I can only take that much:

Naivety Springs, Eternal. But Eternity Did Not Spring From Naivety Alone.

Naivety Springs, Eternal. But Eternity Did Not Spring From Naivety Alone.

Well, it’s a bit more complicated than that. Mr. Leiris is apparently confusing Christianism and Islamism. Same god, but there are subtle differences. In Christianism, we have been created in the image of god, indeed. Whereas in the direct Qur’an, we are his slaves. And in the Qur’an, it is ordered to “set every ambush” for the Non-Believers. Such is the “Verse of the Sword”, Sura 5, verse 9, an ABROGATING verse (meaning it makes all verses which contradict it, invalid). Sura 5, verse 9 follows Luke 19; 27 in the New Testament, showing that Christian viciousness inspired many, and far away, for centuries to come (a Christian monk arguably set the basis of Islam in the mind of his close relative, the “Prophet”, PBUH).

When god is nuts, naivety is no long term strategy.

***

So what do I think of this avalanche of haughty goodness? Well, it’s a long story. I can see perfectly why Mr. Leiris decided to feel, and think, the way he did. I approve of it. It is a defense mechanism which I have, myself, used many times. Hatred is too serious a subject to be embraced frivolously.

Thus, surprisingly for some, no doubt, ignoring hatred is  not a fundamental contradiction from what I deeply advocate. As it turns out, a fundamental debate of the same sort happened during the establishment of the state of Israel.

Same as Israel, or Julius Caesar, a creature born of many subtleties will have many Modi Operandi. Everybody has many Modi Operandi. Real, habitual, virtual, potential… Like everybody else, it turns, out, but even more than everybody else, a would-be philosopher will cultivate perversely an exuberant garden of Modi Operandi (Modes of Operation in Latin; Airbus, a company which makes large flying computers uses a more arrogant concept than M.O., the word “law”. Boeing is affected my the same syndrome. Changing “laws” inappropriately will make a plane crash).

Antoine Leiris’ text is beautiful, it conveys the awesome will of putting love, freedom, play, the positive appreciation of the world,  above anything else. Putting only the positively awesome above everything else, is awesome. I will make sure to inform god of this astonishing revelation, reheated a trillion times again. I could, some will say I should, leave it at that, before I become positively obnoxious anymore. And I will restrain myself, in an exceptional moment of respectful self-control.

Just one point: Antoine observed (in an interview on ONPC) that in other people, or in other circumstances, completely different reactions would be much more appropriate. And of this we will talk later, pretty much as we did before. Here is a foretaste:

Grass is made to be trampled on, we are not. That’s how we play, and appreciate. That’s why we can play, appreciate, love, and be awesome. Survival is also a humanism.

Patrice Ayme’


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SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

Where The Eagles Fly . . . . Art Science Poetry Music & Ideas

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Patterns of Meaning

Exploring the patterns of meaning that shape our world

Sean Carroll

in truth, only atoms and the void

West Hunter

Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

GrrrGraphics on WordPress

www.grrrgraphics.com

Skulls in the Stars

The intersection of physics, optics, history and pulp fiction

Footnotes to Plato

because all (Western) philosophy consists of a series of footnotes to Plato

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

Striving For Ever Better Thinking. Humanism Is Intelligence Unleashed. From Intelligence All Ways, Instincts & Values Flow, Even Happiness. History and Science Teach Us Not Just Humility, But Power, Smarts, And The Ways We Should Embrace. Naturam Primum Cognoscere Rerum

Learning from Dogs

Dogs are animals of integrity. We have much to learn from them.

ianmillerblog

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

Defense Issues

Military and general security

RobertLovesPi.net

Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

How to Be a Stoic

an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century

Donna Swarthout

Writer, Editor, Berliner

coelsblog

Defending Scientism

SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

Where The Eagles Fly . . . . Art Science Poetry Music & Ideas

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Patterns of Meaning

Exploring the patterns of meaning that shape our world

Sean Carroll

in truth, only atoms and the void

West Hunter

Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

GrrrGraphics on WordPress

www.grrrgraphics.com

Skulls in the Stars

The intersection of physics, optics, history and pulp fiction

Footnotes to Plato

because all (Western) philosophy consists of a series of footnotes to Plato

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

Striving For Ever Better Thinking. Humanism Is Intelligence Unleashed. From Intelligence All Ways, Instincts & Values Flow, Even Happiness. History and Science Teach Us Not Just Humility, But Power, Smarts, And The Ways We Should Embrace. Naturam Primum Cognoscere Rerum

Learning from Dogs

Dogs are animals of integrity. We have much to learn from them.

ianmillerblog

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

Defense Issues

Military and general security

RobertLovesPi.net

Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

How to Be a Stoic

an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century

Donna Swarthout

Writer, Editor, Berliner

coelsblog

Defending Scientism