Posts Tagged ‘Wisdom’

Want More Wisdom? Get More Life!

January 2, 2017

ANTI-AGE REVOLUTION NEEDED FOR EXTENDING WISDOM

What is the primary strategic goal of anti-aging? Extending not just life, but wisdom!

(Some may sneer that strategia, generalship in Greek, is about war. But life, preserving life on Earth, is a war, and fighting that war, what wisdom leads to.)

In the European Middle Ages, a colossal discovery was made, which made civilization much smarter, wiser, and far-sighted: glasses. Glasses changed everything, by making plenty of other inventions possible. Glasses were an invention amplifier..

By age 40, in the European Middle Ages, aside from the Black Plague of 1347-53 CE, the death rate was slow, but artisans could not engage in precision technological work, because they lost their short distance vision (as people lived outdoors a lot, they tended to be far-sighted, thus lost proximal vision early).

The same vision problem affected intellectuals: they could not read, write, or copy, anymore, by the time they reached their 40s, and the heights of their mental powers.  Mental power is something which grows with age. A cephalopod observes, learns, and then duplicates. On the left below, the mollusk: 

Nothing Here But Us Algae. To Build A Civilization, One Needs The Functional Equivalent Of Hands, But Also Speech, Society And More Of What They Require, Longevity. All These Cephalopods, However Bright, Do Not Have.

Nothing Here But Us Algae. To Build A Civilization, One Needs The Functional Equivalent Of Hands, But Also Speech, Society And More Of What They Require, Longevity. All These Cephalopods, However Bright, Do Not Have.

[Cephalopods have typically 500 million neurons, five times the number of neurons a rat has; they use it to instantaneously mimic the colors and patterns of their environment, not just by changing colors, but even shape, as seen above, for all sorts of dissemblances; and also for manipulation…]  

Reading glasses changed everything having to do with WISDOM. Shortly afterwards, precision mechanisms could be developed by artisans and scientists: the telescope (late 16th century), the advanced mechanical computer (Pascal, early 17th century), and the mechanical clock, which enabled mariners to know where they were (thus enabling the conquest of the world by civilization, and global trade, the excesses of which we are presently experiencing now…)

Glasses were industrially fabricated in Italy by 1286 CE. They were an extension of rock crystal magnification known, and used, for centuries.

The invention of glasses corresponded to the mood of deliberately helping, or even beautifying, life by new technology through national invention programs, the archetype of which was the invention of stain glass windows and metal architecture in Cathedrals, Frankish style. Or the use of giant hydraulic hammers to bend giant iron, one thousand times too strong to be bent by hand, also for cathedral construction.

That mood, of developing technology to facilitate and prettify life, was not new, it dated from the early Imperium Francorum, but gathered momentum as the Middle Ages advanced.   The Tenth Century was full of newly invented (cultivars of) beans. Beans brought lots of proteins without having to go though the less efficient meat production…

So here we are. We went through considerable revolutions in energy and telecommunication, and produced antibiotics industrially (instead of gathering them in the forest, as prehistoric men did).

However, it has been a long time since our civilization made a drastic extension of useful life time. Sophocles was in his nineties when he wrote (or, rather, dictated) some of his work.

Glasses doubled the number of decades intellectuals could spend furthering their studies. It is no coincidence that full-blown printing with movable type appeared within two centuries after the invention of reading glasses: the glasses augmented the availability of books, and the reading of books. Glasses basically doubled the lifespan of intellectuals. Basically doubling the wisdom (doubling the time to gather,.distill and teach wisdom).

The easiest way to double wisdom again, is to double lifespan again.

Further anti-age revolution is needed now to help wisdom. And, as the biosphere totters under the blows of our irresponsible civilization, more wisdom is not just desirable, but necessary.

So extent lifespan. Bill Gates, who got his fortune from his mom’s influence, pontificated recently that the search for life extension, as pursued by, say, Google, was fundamentally “selfish”. Well, no. Bill Gates is an early college drop-out (see mom, an IBM director, above), Bill Gates does not have much formal education. Gates does not have the conception that it takes years to learn esoteric knowledge. And digest it. And forget it. And reconstruct it, to become a master of wisdom.

We need more time. This year, it was learned that Greenland sharks apparently can live more than 500 years. And that some Bowhead whales live more than 280 years.

So why do we live so little? We, the wisest of them all? Because that was the optimization between fast generation renewal and the wisdom we needed to gather, teach and transmit for the new generation, the whole thing protected by enough war-like instincts. So our wisdom, so far has had a lot to do with how to make war wisely, accelerating the evolution of our species.

Well, we need more wisdom, more gathering thereof. We need a different sort of wisdom, of a less bellicose type, a different sort of war, against fate, rather than men. And thus more time, to find out carefully what is really going on, even inside ourselves. it’s not just about ourselves. Earth needs it.

Patrice Ayme’

Wisdom Is In the Details

May 10, 2016

Contemplate the Details To Explain Holocaust, Israel, Clinton, Wall Street:

I rarely mention Israel. Not just because the country has suffered enough already. Not just because the situation is not interesting. But mostly because Israel is such a special case that it is hard to extract generalities from it. Also its fate is mostly controlled by external factors. However, something important happened there recently: not just the commemoration of the Holocaust of the Jews by the Nazis, but how deputy chief of staff Yair Golan, the second in command of the Israeli army chose to kick it off by comparing today’s Israel with Nazi Germany.

I salute the following comment, which has long been pretty much at the core of my own philosophy, for decades. IDF Major General Yair Golan, reading from a prepared text:

“The Holocaust in my eyes must bring us to deep contemplation of the nature of man, even when that man is myself. The Holocaust must bring us to deep contemplation on the matter of the responsibility of leadership, on the matter of the quality of a society… Shoah [Holocaust of the Jews by the Nazis] must impel us here and now to reflect fundamentally on how here and now we take care of the stranger, the widow and the orphan.”

Morality, like logic, can be anything. This being said, the IDF has not been too immoral yet...

Morality, like logic, can be anything. This being said, the IDF has not been too immoral yet…

Yair Gollan went all out in warning Israel: “If there’s anything that frightens me in the remembrance of the Holocaust, it is identifying some horrifying processes that took place in Europe in general and in particularly Germany up to 70, 80 and 90 years ago, and finding evidence of their repetition here in our society today in 2016. It is easier and simpler to hate a person. It is easy and simple to arouse fear, to scare-monger. It is easy to become dehumanized, callous, sanctimonious.”

90 years ago brings us back to 1926. But actually, Nietzsche was denouncing strident tribal anti-Judaism in Germany in the 1880s. Inspection of the historical record shows that state legislated anti-Judaism originated in Prussia in the eighteenth century. As a British ally against France, anti-Judaism thus became something that Great Britain condoned, and even outright supported. After the French were defeated in 1815 CE, Anti-Judaism became the law in German-speaking land (Jews could not be doctors and lawyers, etc.)

Yair Golan is a proven hawk in matter of defense, although he started the practice of treating Syrians wounded in the Syrian civil war in Israeli hospitals. Like all the leadership of the Israeli army and the Mossad (Israel CIA, complete with assassinations in what became also the French way, and also, more recently, learning from example, the US way… That the Jews and French decided that to become way nastier, in some circumstances, was more moral, after their experiences with Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini should surprise no one…), Golan sees the present situation as an opportunity to make a real peace with the Palestinians. (An assessment that neither the Likud, Hamas or Hezbollah share, as it would undermine their reasons for being…)

How did the whole anti-Jewish madness start? It was a long story, started in Pagan Rome. It should be its own essay. The evolution of a lucrative madness always presents many twists and turns…

The worst part of anti-Judaism is not that it happened, but that, sometimes, and for centuries, it did not exist, at all. This means that something terrible, only founded on the admittedly very satisfying urge to hate somebody, or an entire category of people, can be reborn after centuries of eradication. In other words, the rebirth of fanatical anti-Judaism from its ashes show that cannibalism and slavery as an industry could well reappear in the future. Let alone strict laws enforcing state sexism, etc.

Speaking of evil reborn, Wall Street has raised already $23 million for Clinton in this election cycle. At least $4.3 million from Wall Street has gone directly into Clinton’s presidential campaign, and another $18.7 million has gone to the super PAC backing her, The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday.

Wall Street is a vast army, and its morality is greed. It’s not about orphans.

One third of financial executives’ donations went to Clinton in 2015 and the first quarter of 2016. Now Wall Street donors to (ex) Republican presidential candidates Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush have thrown their weight behind Clinton. Trump received less than 1% of Wall Street donation, and the best financed “candidate” until now has been that of rich Republican donors, AGAINST Trump. (This means that the hysteria against Trump is financed by bedfellows who want to devour each other.)

So how did one get to “The Holocaust”? First “The” Holocaust was part of a much more general, and older pattern: Auschwitz was initially created for Poles, for exterminating Poles, not Jews (although no doubt they were thinking about Jews). And that, in turn was part of a program of extermination of Poland which was at least two centuries old, and itself motivated by greed and world domination: hence the deliberate attack on the world on August 1, 1914.

All this could develop because, all too few saw it for what it was: although Nietzsche condemned the system of thought which would come to be called “Nazism” a generation later, his voice was lonely. Let me notice in passing that the Will To Extermination is the ultimate expression of the Will To Power.

Thus Yair Golan is right: One “must bring us to deep contemplation of the nature of man, even when that man is myself. The Holocaust must bring us to deep contemplation on the matter of the responsibility of leadership, on the matter of the quality of a society.”

After World War Two, the Germans, that is, the German intellectual leadership denied responsibility, as usual. That was an egregious lie. Yet, anxious to fend off Stalin, the Western democracies acquiesced to this fiction. In truth, most of what came to be known as Nazism was the significant essence of (a very significant part of) German society, before Adolf Hitler was even in diapers.

Today’s Israel is in not in such situation, by a very long shot. However, one could imagine that it could well get there if the Jewish “Orthodox” fanatics keep growing in power: they are the ones who had brought the mood conducive to first, and completely pointless Judean War of 66 CE (Greeks had sacrificed birds in front of a synagogue). (The Orthodox Jews escape the military draft, thus don’t intersect with the IDF!)

By, the “leadership” one should not just understand elected politicians. “Leadership” does not mean just elected puppets such as Obama, or the Supreme Court and their meager contributions to the debate. It means mostly the Main Stream Media and the intellectual leadership: those who are viewed as wise, from Paul Krugman to the likes of Bill Gates, or popular authors.

To change minds, we have to change moods and the first mood to change is attention to significant details.

The easier way to destruction of an evil go through its explanation, and that starts with its contemplation. Lack of contemplation gives diabolization an election.

Wisdom is in the details. It may make it sometimes a bit too diabolical, but the ways of goodness are mysterious.

Patrice Ayme’

Love Without Wisdom: Ruin of Humanity.

November 20, 2015

Love without wisdom is only ruin of humanity? Lying, too, is the ruin of humanity, which is truth, if nothing else.

Lying about Islam will not seduce youth. Just the opposite.

If there is no love of wisdom, there is no wisdom in love.

Attack of the day, this time Al Qaeda on Bamako’s most prestigious hotel. Ten Muslim Fundamentalists versus 200 guests and 30 employees. What could go wrong? “God is great!” screamed the gun totting Radicals. Therein were airline crews from Air France, Turkish Airways, and many Members of Parliament from many countries, including France (of course), Senegal, Quebec, etc.

Human Spirit Is Indomitable

Human Spirit Is Indomitable

Well what could go wrong is that there were 40 French gendarmes from GIGN (Groupe d’Intervention de la Gendarmerie Nationale) plus French and U.S. Special Forces in the immediate area. The siege got resolved very quickly with only two dozens killed.

The deepest problem we are facing is philosophical. There is the Islam we have, and then there is the Islam we wish to have. The Islam we have, is the one in the Qur’an. Nobody reads the Qur’an, everybody talks about it, as if they had. Well, nobody reads it, except for the Islamist State, and other Muslim Fundamentalists, or “Radicals”

The West says:”The Islamist State is not Islam, it’s terrorism”. The Islamist State, and other Muslim Fundamentalists reply:”Just read the Qur’an”. Young, dissatisfied people (rightly dissatisfied from austerity, discrimination, inequities, etc.) then decide to make a little experience for themselves: who is right? They read the Qur’an and discover that the Muslim Fundamentalists told the truth: the Islamist State is the Qur’an, unadultarated. As long as the leadership of the West (political and intellectual) lies in a blatant way, and is easily caught lying, it will have no credit, and will only enrage youth ever more. (Maybe that’s what they want? As war serves plutocracy well?)

Islamism Is Terrorism, Wisdom Is Love

It’s as simple as that. Don’t agree? Well read the Qur’an oh you silly ones who talk about books you never read and were mostly told lies about. Before reading comprehension, one needs reading. Right, normal people prefer reading novels than reality.

In the Qur’an it is famously said that who kills someone, kills all of humanity. Never mind that Muhammad himself killed more than 1,000, including an entire tribe of Yathrib (now Medina). Yet, the Qur’an says this. However that verse is ABROGATED by tens of later verses which order all sorts of people (remember that later verses take precedence over earlier ones):

Imams bemoan “Radicalism”. But “radical” means about roots, and in the case of Islam, it means the Qur’an. Radical is the Qur’an. The Qur’an itself is a fabrication of Uthman, not Muhammad, as Aisha pointed out. Entire pieces of it were removed (notably the famous “Satanic Verses”).

So why not rewrite the Qur’an in a new version, the “Real Message of God According to Muhammad, Which Uthman And Others Hid From You”?

That will allow to remove the verses in the Qur’an which are in conflict with civilization.

Meanwhile the comedy of stupidity unchained, keeps on unfolding. I showed an educated lady from California hyper-threatening verses from the Qur’an, which should be unlawful, just because they are hate crimes. She quietly told me: ”Oh, there is the same in the Bible.” She has been a professional woman earning her keep as an engineer for decades.

So the pan is hot?’ Say who pass nowadays for smart, well-balanced people. ‘No problem, the fire is hot too.” Surely, the argument that we should be happy with the Qur’an, because it is similar to the rule book of the Inquisition belongs to those who hope keenly to bring back the Inquisition.

If there is no love of wisdom, there is no wisdom in love. It’s not enough to love God. You have to check first it’s not the Devil, as the Cathars pointed out.

The Vatican had the King of Paris (also known as “France”) annihilate the Cathars, using a Bible Fundamentalist army. One million dead. And all the Cathars’ writings.

But not, as you can see, all their ideas.

Meanwhile in Algeria, the local dictator, Bouteflika, had cartoonist Tahar Djehiche imprisoned 6 months in jail for cartoons ‘insulting the president’ -https://t.co/nJ9tF5xafX”. When the mood is around that insulting the Prophet deserves death, surely insulting the president deserves 6 months. Islam is the bed of gory dictatorship.

Who is Bouteflika?  A terrorist who became a general. He is one of the original principals from the FNL, a terrorist group to whom the French dictator (the one who dictated), De Gaulle, gave power in… 1962. De Gaulle, a famous racist, thought that Bouteflika was perfect for Algeria. De Gaulle thought he could keep “Muslims” or North Africans at bay, and away, by giving them to the wolves. That mood persisted, although its racism had to morph a bit. So the children of the North Africans who fled to France, or Europe, were mistreated by austerity (no schools for you, Muslims, the Qur’an is good enough, and selling drugs, too). So here we are. (Fully describing the relationship between France and North Africa deserves 1,000 pages, I am myself a byproduct; this was just an appetizer…)

If there is no love of wisdom, there is no wisdom in love. People are born from love, and thus have a capacity, and a need to love whatever, including evil. Love is not enough. Love without wisdom is only ruin of humanity.

Patrice Ayme’

Lao Tzu Rejuvenated

October 10, 2015

Lao Tsu, Lao Tse, Lao Zi  mean “Old Teacher”… Or “Old Master”. Teachers are very respected in China, and have been very respected, for 26 centuries (Mao would add forcefully: ‘all too respected’). “Tse”, “Master” is used routinely, from primary school on, with the appropriate concentrated respect.

(Lao Tse, Tzu, or Zi? it all depends how you transliterate the Chinese sound for “teacher”, using Latin, or Anglo-Saxon pronunciation). Here is my running commentary of one of Lao Tse’s most famous poems (chapter 33), from the  foundational text, Tao Te Ching:

***

Lao Tse: “Knowing others is intelligent. Knowing yourself is enlightenment.”

Enlighten the world you thought you knew, with a more faithful reality,

Teaches cosmic humility,

Tells you a world about how you think,

What makes you tick, and how you err.

So enlighten yourself, with learning, about learning,

And from appraising, what does not hurt,

About the world, and cosmos, inside out,

Not forgetting those old errors in fact, thought, deed, mood and feel, once held to be the truth.

If you want to know yourself, learn to travel the world, the world of thought, of moods unchained,

Lao Tse: 26 Centuries Young. Yet Wisdom Has To Grow Now As Never Before

Lao Tse: 26 Centuries Young. Yet Wisdom Has To Grow Now As Never Before

Learn to master yourself, as you learn to know and master, all what is out there,

And the more exotic, the better.

Learn how you got, how one gets, out of yesterday’s logical and emotional boxes.

Lao Tzu: “Bending the world to your will, takes force. Willing yourself to bend is true power.”

Yet you shall not bend so much that, you cannot stand straight anymore,

Yet you shall not bend,

To empower those infamous ones whom wild abandonment to cruelty drives,

To degenerate into their obsequious, all so very serious servant.

Warlords, bankers, legal tax cheats, plutocrats, generals, fanatics, money changers,

Ought not to be allowed to rule states, heavens, and Earth,

Grow ever more powerful, call it democracy, chuckling, joining insult, injury,

To humiliation and dehumanization.

It takes force to be a master, and weakness to be a servant.

Both are addictive. Learn about neurohormones, and how the organs which produce them grow.

Do not reward others’ violence with your abject, decerebrating submission.

Tolerating violence goes hand in hand, with applying it viciously.

Letting it happen, or happening to let it be, a crime either way.

Man was born free, and carries chains willingly,

Because it’s easier to feel, exist, blossom and thrive as a servant,

Just kissing the mighty’s dirty feet, celebrating that as fortitude,

Never making the effort of mustering the will, and wits, to rule over goodness.

Do not abuse of either force, violence, surrender, or submission.

Anger and humility have their use, but it is no use to religiously avoid either, as a matter of principle.

Principle can be intelligent, wise, kind, and helpful,

Yet only when it is best adapted to improving the situation at hand.

Lao Tzu: “Succeeding in the world yields riches. Being content with what is yields wealth.”

Yet the meaning of success is to be questioned,

While we should not forget,

That the planet is a garden,

And our forlorn species the fateful gardener,

Since well before cities rose, and domesticated species fed, protected, and dressed us.

There is nothing supernatural, but for man, who is above the world,

Just as the mind is above the body.

Lao Tzu wanted to: “Apply Tao to the physical world and you will have a long life.”

Long life is dear, yet other values are dearest.

The Tao, at the very least, all of human ethology includes,

While the longest life we have is that of human values,

As incarnated with said human ethology.

Thus the Dao itself is the life, which our species aspire to.

Lao Tzu wanted us to: “See past the physical world to the enduring presence of Tao and death will lose its meaning.”

Yet, we are the physical world,

So strong, that we think about it.

We can see past ourselves though, this is what the best of our ancestors,

Have always done, and what we are meant to do, be it just to live life to the fullest.

Lao Tzu hopes to kill death.

However, if death loses its meaning, don’t we lose something?

What is the ultimate test of strength?

If not the avoidance of death?

Humanity is a strength that goes. It needs its challenges.

Any claim it ought to be otherwise,

Surrenders to the Darkest Side, the exact opposite of what man is.

Fight nature if you wish, but pick your fights.

Of all the nature there is,

That of man is the hardest.

Be forewarned.

Patrice Ayme’

Fear Fear Not Too Much

August 30, 2015

Fear! That gripping of the inner organs. Fear of past losses, now consumed, yet pain keep them alive to freshly torture anew. Fear of the future, assuredly all about getting weaker, sore, deformed, degenerate: “old man look at my life, I am a lot like you were”, sang Neil, Neil “Young” of all people. Aging: death, slow and cruel. Human life starts as a comedy, to end as a tragedy, alleviated by torpor. With pain always.

I walked up along a wild mountain torrent with my nephew, an innocent victim, and the higher we got, the fiercer the rushing waters were.
Sometimes the world is upside down with its own sense we cannot comprehend. Why would waters increase as we went up? It was not just the slope, other mysterious factors, elucidated since, were at work.
Finally a tributary, fiercely erupting down the mountains, gushing out of enormous glaciers far above, stopped our obdurate progression.
Oopss. Plenty Enough For An Honorable Death. I Thought, Therefore I Am Still Around.

Oopss. Plenty Enough For An Honorable Death. I Thought, Therefore I Am Still Around.

So much for the strategy of going around the difficulty by getting higher. And the night was falling, in the shade of giant peaks. My companion, suggesting engineering to cross nevertheless, started to drag huge tree trunks, in the apparent hope of somehow reaching the other side, be it only symbolically. The torrent swallowed one of them. Older, wiser, better read, and more measured, I recognized defeat, and that a long, ignominious retreat was preferable. Preferable to a desperate task, which could only end with death, flushed down the mountain, in ice-cold tons per second of liquid bricks. A guaranteed stupid death. Many an experienced mountaineer has died in mountain streams.

In Patagonia, one of the most beautiful peaks, Aiguille Poincenot, is named after a French guide who was swept by a stream during the first approach by mountaineers of the Fitz Roy range (his bereaved comrades succeeded the first ascent of Fitz Roy). I had close calls with raging mountain rivers at least twice before, once in France, once in Bolivia (where I got carried away for a few seconds).

Human philosophy is not just about accepting death, because we have no choice, anyway. Human wisdom is prone to redesign death as something milder, happening later, and with less pain.

The raging torrents blocking us, we had to accept retreat without any further loss of time. Only then could hope to go back to civilization, a road, with some vague daylight left.

Fear can be debilitating. When fear takes control of human beings, they can crawl, trembling, down a mountain side, shaking so much gripping the life saving holds becomes difficult.

Are great depression and suicidal moods a form of fear? Certainly so. Just as the mountaineer, shaking with fear, can lose grip, and thus life, so can everybody, unable to endure the pain, even the pain of fear, loses grip on one’s life.

Fear. Fear, not just of what will be, but fear of what could be. Existential fear. And why not? What will be is terrible: a personal apocalypse. Only imperial happiness can colonize it, and throw it, laughing, down the abyss.

Imperial happiness can colonize fear. Less noble passions can even abolish it entirely (Jihadists live off this). Thus the seduction the basest passions exert. The will to power, the urge to blood, mayhem, or silly, but all consuming adventures, such as so-called romance, or sex, are mighty medicines against fear.

Passions, in the instant, can erase a heavy heart… If they are overwhelming enough (otherwise, despondency does it). So there is more to war than happenstance, or a few deranged individuals. War is a way to escape fear, even pain. At least, for a while.

As he died, Socrates asked that a sacrifice be made, as if he had been cured from a disease. Did Socrates view life as a disease? How wise is that?

Life is a disease when one views it for what it seems: from some fun, to pain, handicaps, suffering, death.

The engineered equivalent of endo cannabinoids to make one forget about the incoming pain are all passions, strong enough to forge another universe where our actions reign supreme, as directed by us.

Yet, in the mountains, and elsewhere, fear can be a good adviser, a teacher and friend. Fear teaches self-reliance, and the will to power. Experiments show that, if, to get food, a rat has to go through a particular pain, it stresses out much less when it is the one to decide when to administer the pain.

We have to learn to live along fear, as if it were a friend. We have to learn to live happily, not just in spite of pain, but because of pain.

Nietzsche wanted us to mysteriously love the “eternal return of the same”. As if there was such a thing. Instead we have to embrace the eternal return of the universe, never quite the same, complete with fear, and pain, and how to dominate them, with happy self-reliance, as much as we can in all ways, most of them spiritual and intellectual. Not the least because we, and our entourage, will feel better that way.

Fear ought to be used as a passport to a better world. That’s why many dangerous sports blossom. And that’s why we did not try to cross that torrent.

Oh Humanity, hear!
Pain, suffering, dread and fear,
Do not neglect them, horrors,
Often, they are teachers,
Mean, cruel, pitiless, atrocious,
Yes. But what else?
How else to be dragged to spurn,
The gravest errors and worst moods?
Ultimately cruel, fear and pain can be,
Yet all too often, ultimately kind!

Fear Is A Spur,

Lest we be tortured by remorse,
Paralyzed by terror,

A pain without a life

Patrice Ayme’

 

Really New Philosophy Fights, Or Is Not

April 14, 2015

When we look back on history, considering the greatest strides which were ever made, most, if not all, originated in strife.

Take the Heliocentric system. How many people got killed for suggesting it? Many. Millions were terrorized. There is an extant dialogue, deep in the Middle-Ages when the Duke Of Normandy relentlessly questions a top religious authority and professor about why is it that the Earth is not moving.

The eminent scholar insisted that the guy who suggested this heresy to William is no scholar, but a perpetual drunkard.

Nature Is Ruled By The Physical Law Of Basic Forces

Nature Is Ruled By The Physical Law Of Basic Forces

Correct ideas threaten the establishment.

But, then, one may want to ask, why is it that the establishment so often foster idiotic ideas?

I have a spectacular answer: the establishment fosters idiotic ideas, precisely because they are idiotic.

Idiotic ideas have two main advantages:

  1. The very idea of plutocracy is idiotic. Idiotic in a major way. So, should one be in the habit of ferreting out idiocy, one would ferret out plutocracy.
  2. Conversely, if one learns to tolerate idiocy, one would be naturally led to tolerate the biggest idiocy of all, plutocracy.

By making We The People stupid, herd like, the establishment, the oligarchy, the plutocracy, can rule better.

Those who love wisdom though, view idiocy as a prey. That does not mean they eat it with delight. Wolves are often hated because they enjoy killing and maiming much more than they can eat (ask French herders: sometimes dozens of sheep are found killed or otherwise mangled by a wolf).

Why wolves do this has to do with who they have evolved to become: not just eaters of vegetarians, but guardians of ecology.

Similarly, the philosophical drive in the genus Homo may have evolved to be guardian not just of wisdom, but the terror of brute force.

Hence we can tell real good philosophy by the power of the enemies it makes.

In particular, philosophy that caresses the masses the right way, is assuredly philosophy that fit their masters just right.

One may want to consider the following assertion: in the last 4 centuries, the politics and policies of the Anglo-Saxon immigrants to America were diabolically clever. Demonstrate. In full, to make sure of acquiring lots of enmity.

In particular the exact role played by the USA in the World Wars of the Twentieth Century, I suggest, have to be carefully considered.

My thesis differs vastly from official history’s main truth. It is a sort of meta-truth, a higher way to look at what happened. A good suggestion for leads to elucidate a crime is by checking to whom the crime profits. It is not too difficult to find out that:

The Equality Liberty Fraternity Republic of France was attacked by German fascists, in WWI and WWII, at least in part, because the latter were helped, aided, & abetted, by racist American plutocrats. 

I have written many essays demonstrating this in detail. Not surprisingly conventional historians would, correctly, view such an examination as a career killer. An overall interrogation, though, is what good would it make, to demonstrate this.

An excellent good: when We The People realizes how manipulative and lethal the present, plutocratically controlled political system can be, and how good a it is at covering-up its crimes, We The People will realize how serious the situation is.

Patrice Ayme’

Wisdom, Science: The Eternal Saw

April 13, 2015

Philosophy, the love of wisdom. But what is wisdom? A little research on the origin of the word is enlightening: in all languages it turns out that the concept of wisdom has to do with knowledge. The Proto Indo-European (PIE) root is “WEID” which means to know, to see (hence the “Veda” , I know, in Sanskrit “Videre” in Latin, hence French “Voir”, “Vision”, the German “Wissen” to know, etc.)

(Weirdly, “Sophia”, one of the two Greek versions of divinized wisdom, is an outlier, of unknown origin.)

I will show here that wisdom, and science, have a war-like behavior at their heart. The ability of sawing and cutting. Thus real wisdom and science is all about a mood not conventionally associated with them.

Real Wisdom Is Certain, Certain Wisdom Is Real

Real Wisdom Is Certain, Certain Wisdom Is Real

Lao Zi (previously known as Lao-Tzu, the Old Master), 26 centuries ago, the famous contemporary of Confucius, insisted that the knowledge of the self was superior, while knowing too many things could be inferior. Also not knowing that one did not know was a “defect”.

(Yes, Lao Zi’s wisdom is quite similar to some of the wisdom coming from various Greek sources at the same time; the difference with China, is that Greece, or, at least some city-states such as Ἀθῆναι, Athēnai, were able to enact superior wisdom into superior political systems. The Greek political enactment of superior wisdom in turn inspired many others, as superior Greek democracies were established from Anatolia (Phrygia, Phocea, Miletus, etc.) to “Great Greece” (South Italy) to a small empire in Southern France and beyond (based in Marseilles, Nice, and Athenopolis, aka Saint Tropez).

One should think of systems of thoughts, and moods, in one word, mentalities, as axiomatic systems, highly hierarchized, yet, entangled, as causal webs.

These are actually neurological structures… And that make them very stable.

Superior mentalities discard and throw away axiomatic bits that are inferior. Superior wisdom has to do with amputating. This is why the very concept of science is all about cutting.

The Latin scire, to know, is thus originally from the Latin scindere, to cut, divide; interestingly the French scier, to saw, is thus at the root of science:

Je Sais, Donc Je Scie.

This is not a play on words; it is serious. However, it’s untranslatable in English (‘I science, thus I saw?’)

An example I gave on my essay on the “Flat Universe”, or in “100 Billion Years Old Universe” is my proposal to cut-off (decide, see below), the hypothesis of Big Noise Inflation (“Cosmological Inflation) as we already have another inflation, all too real, Dark Energy.

Gunther Grass died today, he wrote down a piece of imagination, about a boy who was a drummer under the Nazis. Grass helped teach the Germans how Nazism worked. Literature has to be made appealing. Philosophy, though, is not literature, it does not have to sneak in some truths with bed time stories for children. It focuses on reality: somebody has to do it.

Science does not have to be nice, it cannot be nice: after all, it is about sawing off some parts of other people’s neurologies. This is why the Greek goddess of wisdom, Athena, is also a warrior goddess. Not that the concept was just Greek. It may have originated where a lot of Greek ideas and theories originated, Egypt. The most ancient Egyptians, in the Predynastic period, more than 5,200 years ago, worshipped a goddess whose Egyptian name was Neith. Neith was identified, by both Greeks and Egyptians, 25 centuries ago, with Athena (Herodotus, Histories 2:170–175). Neith was the war goddess and huntress deity of the Egyptians. (Neith was also identified with weaving, the high tech of the times.)

To find the truth, one has to decide what the truth is. From the Latin de-caedere, what comes from caedere, from “cut”, literally: cut-off.

Science is about sawing. Science can get over-enthusiastic, and amputate parts of knowledge (wisdom) that, after all, were true.

The Ancient Greeks, or more exactly the Hellenistic dictatorships which followed the independent city-democracies of Greece at its peak, were rife with massive, ill-advised amputations of knowledge.

Non-Euclidean geometry got amputated, Greek algebra and numeration (a proto-modern system) was also amputated, and then emigrated for further development in India. Archimedes’ Infinitesimal Calculus got discarded. The Heliocentric system of Aristarchus, also. Even Mechanical Computers, although extensively developed, were then thrown away.

All these amputations happened because the philosophy at the helm, plutocracy, was antagonistic to creative thinking (And Aristotle has a lot to do with it; at least, so I think).

Philosophy acts as meta-controller on all mentalities, including science.

This is why modern science was launched by Middle Ages philosophers (Buridan, his student Oresme, etc.), who then found that they had to make their discourse more precise, inventing inertia, momentum, stating Newton’s First Law, inventing coordinates, graphs, etc.

A deep strategy of Buridan was to refuse to study theology. Still he was elected rector of the world’s greatest university, Paris. I have in my hand the brand new book of Steven Weinberg (Nobel discoverer of the Electro-Weak theory). “To Explain The World”, 2015. Weinberg gives the greatest place to Buridan ever found in an English speaking book written by a physicist. (Weinberg still makes a hash of Buridan’ throwing out Aristotle’s vertical arrow experiment, as Weinberg conflates the refutation by Buridan from Buridan’s exposition of Aristotle error! This an error traditionally made in secondary American literature. Not everybody reads Medieval Latin!)

Why is it important to give Buridan, and other Middle Age French philosophers and scientists their correct place? Because it is giving reason its correct place.

It is not just about showing that the real Renaissance was in the Middle Ages, or that how exactly Europe pulled ahead of the rest of the world in technology.

To understand how wisdom proceeds, one has to look how it proceeded before.

And to understand well that the mastermind of all important progress in understanding is philosophy. Science without philosophy is like a chicken with a freshly chopped head: spectacular and vigorous, but not for long.

Patrice Ayme’

Wisdom, Most Devouring Beast of Them All

March 17, 2015

New Philosophy Mostly Blossoms Multi, and Meta, Culturally:

Any culture is wise, and loved. Thus, it is a philosophy. To use philosophy for diplomacy among cultures mandates, and thus needs, a greater wisdom to adjudicate among smaller wisdoms.

To any logic is associated not just one, but many, metalogics. Any of the latter is bigger than the former.

This is a direct application of the proofs of the Incompleteness Theorems in metamathematics.

Thus wisdoms, or cultures, by themselves, are the germs for bigger, greater wisdoms, or meta-cultures (thus, germs for their own enlargements). They contain their own spontaneous generation for greater transmutations.

Pine Island Glacier Crack Philosophically Transmutating

Pine Island Glacier Crack Philosophically Transmutating

The easiest way to enlarge a culture is to entangle it with another. The resulting union is automatically meta. Thus the greater wisdom of travelers.

However, what comes out after a while, is not harmony, but battle. Indeed a simple union of logos, and intricately entangled emotional systems is not possible, as some elements will generally come to contradict each other.

This is what those who confuse multiculturalism with tolerance, overlook. In their colossal naivety.

Paradoxically, true multiculturalism is not tolerant, at least not tolerant of lies and ossified thinking. Instead, it learns to pick, chose, abandon, adopt, and decide. It does not tolerate everything: it selects the best, rejects the bad.

Any wisdom is a system of logos, entangled with systems of moods associated to it. Local wisdom is often weird: associate a picture of Buddha to a party in Burma, and you will be condemned to years in prison.

The entanglement of cultures results into, not just synergies, but, before that, competition, conflict, even extermination, between different ideas and emotions.

The situation is similar to, but even more frazzled than in the biological survival of the fittest.

Any new wisdom comes from forcefully introducing at least one new idea, fact, or emotion to an old wisdom. The resulting entanglement brings a dynamic conflict between the old wisdom, and the union of it with the new element.

So one can say that any new, better, and improved wisdom is intrinsically multicultural.

This happens in the clearest way when new science arises: Relativity as defined by Poincaré (1904) arose from the earlier realization (Lorentz, Poincaré) that time and space (contribution of Fiztgerald) were local.

Einstein’s name got associated to Relativity (although he had invented none of it), just because had written down a neat abstract of the new wisdom in just one paper (“hiding sources”, as he admitted, helped!)

Why did Einstein become so famous, if he invented nothing (aside from the obvious nationalist and tribal aspects of the discrimination)? Because he presented a neat synthesis of the ideas and concepts of the new culture, Relativity. By the time Einstein wrote his paper, the new culture exposed by Poincaré the year before in the USA, had to be recognized as a coherent whole in the German language, the language of very serious and obviously superior people.

By 1905, Relativity had thoroughly digested the idea of Poincaré that the constancy of the speed of light, as measured in all frames, was a new law of nature. And also the proof of Poincaré, from 1900, that the emission of energy by a body decreased its mass, according to E = mcc. One just had to wrap it in one text.

How is a philosophical wisdom found to be superior to another? Because it is closer to the truth in matters pertaining to survival.

Picture this; in Western Antarctica, the Pine Glacier rests on the bottom of the ocean, two thousands meters down. It is bathed in increasingly warmer waters. Its catchment basin, under sea level, is larger than Texas. If Pine, and some of its colleagues, melted, and they could, very fast, billions of refugees would be on the march.

Clearly, something impacting survival, but not envisioned by philosophical systems in the past. This is the sort of possible truth that philosophy has to envision. Add increasing ocean acidity (from conversion of CO2 into carbonic acid), and one has new facts that require clearly drastically new philosophies.

So the most drastic transculturalism comes from mixing philosophical obsolescence, let alone bigotry, with exotic cultures, brand new science.

If we want to survive, we need to be right, and that involves firing lethal torpedoes to sink the biggest lies, and turn attention towards the real problems, whatever is left, an approximation to truth.

Philosophy, some suggested, is a way of life. Yes, the one that maximizes survival, and that means, now more than ever, the pursuit of veracity, is the most superior philosophy.

Maximal culture shock can only help constructing that superiority. Even the worst culture has some mental elements that can be integrated somewhere into superior wisdom.

Some may object that the preceding was all too theoretical: it may be true that new systems  of entangled thoughts and emotions arise according the (metalogical) mechanic that is explicitly described in the proofs of the Incompleteness Theorems in logic. However, they will complain, what does that bring?

As I said, transculturalism, well done does not mean falling asleep, it means conflict, or replacement. Therefore when, as in Europe, conflict is avoided cost, and replacement is not instigated (as in the USA), transculturalism does not arise, only apartheid (to use the notion of Manuel Valls, the French PM used, to depict the situation in France).

Conflict and replacement can be effected by rising the cult of the republic above others.

In the USA, Americanization is both fine art and massive enterprise. It involves sports and high rewards. (This is one reason why some financial compensation, in sports or ‘equal opportunity’ “leadership” jobs are so high in the USA: to make the attraction of absorption in American culture irresistible, for the befuddled masses out there).

The best and highest philosophy swallows, integrates and transmutate accordingly to whatever it can swallow. That mood is already in Rabelais. What is new now, what is better now, is that never before have so many new fats come to light, so many cultures, so much history, and so much new shattering devastation.

This disastrously destructive, and all too global situation out there, is excellent, for the birth of vastly superior wisdom. Bring it on.

Patrice Ayme’

NEW WISDOM, NEW TURMOIL

August 11, 2014

NEUROGENESIS IS NEVER CALM

Abstract: Wisdom requires turmoil. Too much calm brings neuronal, intellectual, and even moral disaster. A case in point is the devil-may-care attitude of the USA in the 1930s, lauded by those who celebrate calm and peace, yet condemned by common decency.

Wisdom is about embracing turmoil, and then, dominating it. It requires heavy construction inside the brain, and the greater the new wisdom, the greater the new effort. Prometheus did not just discover fire, but a multiverse of expanding possibilities.

This is why the biologically given philosophy of Homo crushes that of theocrats and other superstitious, ravenous plutocrats. Men are all about overcoming themselves. At least those men who think hard enough so as not to finish as the main course.

Learning > Neurogenesis > Effort, Pain, Struggle

Learning > Neurogenesis > Effort, Pain, Struggle

[Neurogenesis in the Hippocampus.]

Careful meditation is often helpful to establish new wisdom. Yet, turmoil is always necessary, to foster higher wisdom, in individuals as in societies. It’s important to know this, because promoting too much calm comes at the expense of wisdom. Let me explain.

Whenever we try to define a mental state, nowadays, we have to remember that there is more than 100 neurohormones known. Some are correlated to rage, others to anxiety, fear, love (oxytocin).

Neurohormones define chemical states, somewhere in the brain. Maybe in just one place, maybe in many places. Those correlate with emotions, often through the activity of sub-units in the brain (say the amygdala for fear). Which neurohormones are tightly connected to which emotions, and how, is yet to be ascertained in nearly all cases.

We just know that, to define which emotion a brain, or part thereof, is undergoing, it will be necessary to determine neurohormones, their presence, secretion, or suppression.

People love to project “calm”. When “calm” is faked, is it real? “Calm” is not far from stealth. Any predator, be it the average cat, or the ancient Chinese strategist Sun Tzu, knows that stealth is of tremendous advantage for a successful aggression (Sun Tzu’s book, various treatises on war, and a casual look at history show that surprise is half the victory).

Is there a neurohormone of “calm”? That’s unlikely: the lion stealthily, crawling on his belly in the grass toward the prey projects “calm”, but for the occasional twitch. Yet its neurohormonal war systems are primed up for maximum violence. At the time of the attack, they will be unleashed with great fury, demonstrating that feline clam is just a tactic.

A sleep hormone does exist: that’s Melatonin.

Conclusion? “Calm” is rather deceit, or computation, or then relaxation and laziness (something brains need, just as they need sleep… probably because they need to establish a hierarchy-network of knowledge).

Alex Jones wrote a second post on “Wisdom comes out of calm”. He explains that calm is how to deal with dogs. Meanwhile he explicitly said in a preceding reply to me, that the Americans were wise to calmly wait for Hitler’s attack (see below).

Alex’s position is interesting, because it reflects the popular expectation about what wisdom ought to be: something calm, a form of torpor. No wonder, calm is typical of herd behavior. The herd calmly grazes and ruminates, when lions are not pouncing. Here is Alex:

“The mind that has no calm is like a drunken person, it has no wisdom, rushing from one crisis to another, lacking the anchoring of wisdom, the drunk does stupid actions and ruin is the drunks ultimate reward. When a cat comes to me inviting me to stroke it, I gain opportunity to find my inner calm in a world of war.”

Equating lack of calm with being “drunk” is alien to me. I drink water, I find that smart. A mind that is not calm, does not have to be angry: there are other moods. When the anger neurohormones are on, the mind is certainly not calm, but that does not mean that, when the mind is not calm, the mind is angry. It could, simply, be an attentive, or hard thinking mind.

Defining “calm” neurologically has not been done. Yet. The only calming hormones I know of, serotonin and melatonin, rather induce sleep.

Too much calm puts morality to sleep, if nothing else. In a preceding comment of Alex, one finds:

“Calm provides the opportunity for wisdom to emerge, metaphorically like soil waiting for the seed. The mind that is angry, in emotional turmoil, acts like the drunk, and they will never make wise choices or actions.

The Americans were wise to avoid war, and they were wise to stay out of other peoples political problems until those aggressors began to attack them.”

Here Alex is alluding to my position that American calm while Hitler raged, killed and attacked, was monstrous. Hitler had given explicit instructions not to make Americans angry. Hitler considered white, racist America to be half Nazi already, and thought of the USA as a natural ally. Hitler’s plan went awry, in great part because enough Americans had the great courage to get angry, in spite of their compatriots’ selfish calm tolerance of infamy.

The Americans refused to support France and Britain, and the Commonwealth, in 1939-1940. Calmly supported by hordes of American plutocrats and their corporations, the Nazis came very close to annihilating France and Britain in 1940.

Consequence? More than 70 million people died, including six million Jews assassinated calmly. I understand that this vicious American policy calmly established the empire of the USA, and its famed “American Century”. And that calm propaganda has made most people believe that the intervention of the USA was purely to rescue democracy, instead of the much greater plot that it truly was.

In 1945, and thereafter, the USA supported massively at some point, Stalin, Mao, Ho Chi Minh, Nasser, the FNL, Saddam, even bin Laden, or the Taliban. Those details have to be forgotten: the Devil dwells therein.

I refuse to call that “right”. I call it wrong. I even call it an infamy, or a whole succession of infamies.

Something the USA ought to be eternally ashamed of was the support American political and business leaders gave to the Nazis. Consider this telling detail: the USA, as a state, had to wait for Hitler to declare war to them to find something wrong with him. It was more than despicable, and unwise. It was outright criminal. That, of course, is my calm opinion, forged by decades of calm, careful considerations.

And the real truth is even worse: German generals asked for American and British help to get rid of Hitler. Would the democrats please make clear that they would join France in a war against Hitler?

Calmly, British and American authorities denounced the generals… to Hitler.

So calm is definitively not wisdom, but something that can masquerade as wisdom.

In truth, no new wisdom can be reached without turmoil. Most great creators lived in turmoil. And that’s no accident. There is an obvious neurological reason for it.

Emotions build reasons (neurohormones guide the construction of new neuro-geometry, by growing axons, dendrites and synapses just so). To have new, better ideas, one needs to wipe out the wrong brain geometry, thus new neurohormones, that is new emotions, have to invade, submerge, and grow new geometry.

Thus fresh passions and actions bring new and better reasons. To model the world better, we have to engage the world, further. Experiments do this.

Indeed exercise itself, let alone challenges, bring higher mental performance. And it’s not just performance, that they bring, but also even neurological existence. Rats with a non-stimulating environment see their neurology shrink. Neurology was evolved for turmoil. Without it, the very reason for its existence disappear.

And so it goes for entire civilizations: the more turmoil, the more wisdom. The Greeks, a notoriously bickering lot, as Nietzsche pointed out, were not just about Apollo (calm, beauty, poise, balance), but also about Dionysus (agitation, turmoil, passion, mess, craziness). This is the main idea of Nietzsche’s “Birth of Tragedy”, an analysis of the genesis of Greek greatness.

Civilizations which are too calm produce nothing, not even their own survival. This may be the problem of Europe now.

Pathological calm was certainly the problem of the civilizations that Genghis Khan and his generals overran. The Mongols said so explicitly. The fierce horsemen accused those they invaded to be sleepy plutocracies mistreating their own people.

Notice that Greek civilization, although it was conquered, greatly survived, so strong were its animals spirits. There is nothing calm about the main Greek notions. Nor is there anything calm about science. Physics has energy at its core. In physics, calm does not exist.

Truth comes out of trial, error, and the passion to engage in them, which rampant imagination. Really new ideas disturb all brains, that’s why they are new. I have had many of my comments censored, all over the Internet, because they contained what was perceived as new, thus inconvenient, ideas, or facts.

Latest example? Scientific American publishes carefully controlled articles on the climate. I dared to mention that there was coral in the Mediterranean. The six words comment was censored. (An email informed me of this.) I guess that, as long as I stay calm, I will keep on paying for “Scientific American” (which is neither scientific, nor American). But is that the wisest course? Would not anger be a better adviser?

Highly conservative types may object that they do not see why we need new wisdom, and thus the exhausting task of neurogenesis. Indians, Egyptians, Pythagoricians, Stoics, and their parrots, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, believed in Eternal Recurrence, the fact that nothing is really new under the Sun. Wisdom consisted into accepting what had been, as it sure, will be again. Related to this is the Arabic “Inch Allah” (If God wants it.)

However, an achievement of modern science, was to disprove these philosophies of Amor Fati (Love of Fate).

Starting with the discovery, and subsequent disappearance, of Sun spots in the Seventeenth Century, and then the discovery of biological, and geological evolution by Jean-Baptiste Lamarck and his somber company, turmoil was found to reign all over. The universe, biology, man himself, let alone technology and civilization, are never, ever standing still, nor repeating themselves. Everything is a force that goes.

New wisdom is necessary for survival. It’s not a matter of choice, and esthetics. Those who will still stand in the future, individuals or civilizations, will have thought anew, and their brains will have mutated, from their own volition, or dismal condition. Others will have turned into the main course, literally, and figuratively.

Patrice Ayme’

 

Calmly Thinking Up A Storm

August 9, 2014

Buddhists, Muslims and other Christians, often make the argument that human society is a terrible place, a false world, that it has to be fled at any cost.

Saint Augustine famously recommended to leave that “City of Man” (Rome), and join instead the “City of God”.

Soon all Romans joined the City of God, which happened to also be that of the Plutocrats. There was no more money for real things, like the military. By 400 CE, the Franks were put in charge of defending the North West of the empire. In 406 CE, the Rhine froze, and several German nations broke through, surprising the Franks. There were no hinterlands military reserves.

The Vandals, one of these nations, charged across Gallia, Hispania, and landed across, in Africa.

Soon the Vandals were below the walls of Saint Augustine city of Hippo (of which he was bishop). Hippo fell, a case of divine justice, no doubt. Augustine died. The Vandal occupation, overall, lasted a century, before a puny, but successful Roman counter-attack.

Within three centuries, North Africa, the world’s most Christianized place, would fall to the invading Arabs. And it fell the hard way: after a war that lasted many years, the cities were annihilated.

A characteristic of Roman North Africa is that the presence of Roman soldiery was very light. Eight centuries of peace were enjoyed, aside from episodic violence during Vandal rule. Now contemplate this:

Here is Alex Jones, a successful blogger, in “Finding calm in the storm“: “Human society encourages you to become anxious, always in a state of panic. The adrenaline constantly runs like an angry river… The news is always ugly, full of fear and worry. Human society is a constant raging hurricane of angry fear.” He then recommends to pet a cat: ”You are calm, the cat enjoys your company. The cat has pulled you out of the storm into a calm centre.”

I am myself a great apostle of Nature, and the realism it fosters. Using a human body, and a human mind, the way they were evolved to be, in nature, allows us to enjoy what we are meant to be. That’s why I hike, run, dive, climb, and work on my garden.

Yet, a purring cat, per se, comes rather short, as a full expression of nature. And why are some people so disturbed by… nothing?

The argument can be made, and ought to be made, that, in this raging storm, being calm should be the least of our worries. There is all too much calm about big things, and too much tempests in tea pots.

Alex Jones kindly replied this to me: “A calm mind is a wise mind.”

There we have the naked truth: a blatant identification between calm, and wisdom. They are related, but far from identical. It’s true that a wise mind will often be calm, when others are not. That’s because the wise has anticipated the situation, and those who are less wise, when confronted to reality, get all excited while they are trying to adapt to it. They have no choice.

Conversely, those who were never excited never learned anything.

If one believes that “a calm mind is a wise mind”, the Americans were sure wise to keep calmly supporting Hitler in 1939. The Japanese were sure wise to calmly support emperor Hiro Hito, from 1937 (Nanking) to Pearl Harbor (1941), and beyond.

And those who do not give a hoot about whether humanity is poisoning the biosphere, are certainly remarkably calm, thus very wise. Meanwhile, Nile crocodiles, who barely move for months in winter, deep in the watery depths, have got to be the wisest.

Believing that calm is wise, renders the calm acceptance in the UK and the USA of Bush’s attack on Iraq in 2003, really wise.

In truth, unveiling truth often demands not just excitation, but outright violence. Even if that’s just the violence of changing one’s own mind. Nietzsche pointed out, courageously, that he made “philosophy with a hammer“.

Conventional wisdom is always calm, because it is so sure of itself. Calm also are the deepest errors, those harder to expugnate. It’s easier to keep one’s mind at ease, and regurgitate the past, as one learned it at the age of four.

To identify wisdom with calm is, thus, a fundamental error.

Building the correct ideas and moods requires work, thus energy, thus, one could say, violence. A child has to accept a lot of force to be perpetrated on her mind to fabricate all that knowledge and wisdom, which shows up in immensely subtle neuro-geometry.

When one looks in the small, at the Quantum scale, one discovers extreme agitation. And the smaller one looks, the greater the agitation. Most of the mass of a proton is created by the kinetic energy of the quarks zooming around inside, thanks to E = mcc. (E, the kinetic energy of quarks, creates m, the mass of the proton.) Agitation itself creates mass.

Last night, I watched a tremendous thunderstorm. Nature herself is violent. Truth itself is what’s left of the imagination, once all trials and errors one could think of have been made.

Truth is not calm, nor is it arrived at calmly. Believing otherwise was all the excuse authorities often had to send many a thinker to death.

Patrice Ayme’