Materialistic science makes us feel less human. He thinks the arts can change that |304|

Discussion in 'Skeptiko Shows' started by Alex, Feb 9, 2016.

  1. Ah I can see that. And, admittedly, if someone in my family wanted to transition at a young age I would be wary of such a drastic shift given the potential for regret.

    OTOH I know people who have transitioned and are happier for it.

    I guess to me a soul being gendered and sleeved into the wrong body doesn't seem out of place in the backdrop of everything else that might potentially exist. I wonder if a less materialist science could help us understand and help distinguish people.
     
  2. Ah I just meant politics in a broad sense, in that individuals will act in the communal reality in some manner.

    But yes, as we've seen with the way science has been restricted by prejudice and academic politics the control can impede spirituality to the point of trying to choke it to death.
     
  3. Michael2

    Michael2 New

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Messages:
    271
    So yes, "wipe the slate" is a lengthy process that depends on a collective recognition and acceptance of the injustice and crimes that were committed by individuals and institutions.

    In the case of South Africa:
    Still,
    http://justice.uaa.alaska.edu/forum/18/3fall2001/b_safrica.html
    http://www.justice.gov.za/trc/report/
     
    Alex, Sciborg_S_Patel and Nicole like this.
  4. Alex

    Alex New

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    Messages:
    2,608
  5. mattvw

    mattvw New

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    First an apology of lurking. I have listened to most all of your shows Alex and have loved most of them. I am usually out walking my dogs while I listen and have all sorts of ideas to respond with but when I come back the forum has a couple pages of comments and I don't have time for a proper reading of the comments before I make my point that might now be confusing, given the direction of where the forum was going. I have responded before and enjoyed and appreciated the group of people that frequent this forum. Ok, long wind up to say what's been said and wouldn't you know it would take not liking a show to finally respond again. I was stunned at this interview and could only think, thank god or whoever people thank these days, that neither of my daughters went to Prescott college. I would have gone there and personally dragged them out of the school after hearing this interview. Certainly everyone has a right to an opinion but what nonsense.

    I have been amazed at how much you take on materialists. There are shows that are almost hard to listen to as you take on these stubborn stuck in old thinking and tradition, "scientists". So how you could go through a whole interview with someone like this, I just don't understand. I mean what the .... is social justice? Could someone define that for me? I understand the rule of law but social justice. Then to say our young college kids should change the world in regards to social justice. Have you been around college kids? Do you want them changing the fabric of our culture? Many of them haven't worked a day in their "privileged - now there's an abused and overused word, lives. They then are going to teach us about "social justice". How about getting them to pay their college loans back. Now that would be social justice.

    I have meditated for over 40 years and spent 15 years in an alternative healing business. That said, I'm just sick of what I consider "spiritual" stuck thinking. Here's just one thought, as an example. Do you realize that to give money or other "freebies" from one person or group to another, you have to empower someone with the "right" and "authority" to physically take it from the first person? Can that be done spiritually? Do you justify that by saying you owe them that because of their ancestors?

    A great book on this subject is "Wealth, Poverty and Politics" by Thomas Sowell. Just an example of one point he makes in the book where he quotes someone in Rome saying that British slaves were the worst kind to own because they were too stupid to be trained. Slavery has been around for thousands of years. Freedom is relatively new. Let's not give freedom away.


    I don't want to bore anyone with more of my rant and personal philosophical opinions but I just couldn't let my silence show approval for such a show.
     
    Ian Gordon and Trancestate like this.
  6. Alex

    Alex New

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    Messages:
    2,608
    funny... yep, totally relate. I gotta do better job that re the shows I listen to.

    I get your point. It's hard because I like Drew and since his topic is a little bit outside of what we normally talk about, I wanted to give him a lotta leeway. I was thinking/feeling some of the things you're saying during the interview, but didn't want to totally derail things. Then, when he whiffed on the science thing with regard to HIV/AIDS (a point where I thought we might have an interesting discussion) I just kinda wrapped things up.

    right, but I'm not sure that settles the books for either side. I think (and maybe this captures some of your frustration) the issue is how to forward in a more just and "spiritually enlightened" way rather than getting mired in the guilt game. to that end, I would suggest we set as a top priority ending the widespread global epidemic that is slavery today: https://www.freetheslaves.net/donate/

    lessening today's suffering might be the best way to start healing old wounds too.
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  7. mattvw

    mattvw New

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    I would say on giving Drew a lotta leeway, to remember that some of those scientists that you ask to challenge their long time friends, mentors, inspirations or teachers, might want to give them a lotta leeway as well - just saying. Might allow you a little more empathy for some of these guys or might challenge you to ask some of these folks who sometimes seem to spew thoughts without much thought to a question that might have them honestly look where they might not have before. Doesn't need to be aggressive.

    1st, who are you referring to that hold the books that need to be settled? You may need your books settled. My books are just fine. I'm not trying to be snippy, just trying to put a boundary there where you might want to infringe your thoughts on my life process. Thanks for the slavery link. I watched it and will investigate further. The problem I have with your sentence though is where you say we. Who is this we? Will we compel "them"? I love the thought of you and me (not we) choosing to do it. That is an individual choice. Are my individual freedom thoughts perfect? Far from it. Now though we're talking politics and that is an individual choice, to some degree. We could go into the political part of the conversation but that's tricky to do.

    I personally don't get the guilt and old wound thing. I grew up in a family with both parents being alcoholics and bit abusive. I spent years figuring out my life process and am not about to all of a sudden take on the world's guilt because someone thinks it's a good idea. Guilt is a choice and if you choose it, there is no bottom to it.

    It's funny I'm a very spiritually oriented person and at the same time I love business. I don't like crony capitalism nor fraud. When two people come together and trade with money - that's a beautiful thing. That's how I'd change the world. I'd change the school system 1st, which is going backwards quickly. Then I'd do my best to give people the opportunity to innovate. I'm one of those that believe a rising tide raises most boats.

    Thanks for your response Alex.
     
    Trancestate likes this.
  8. Alex

    Alex New

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    Messages:
    2,608
    agreed... it's the right direction to go... but it's a case-by-case thing. for example, I'm glad I was able to Steven Bachelor room, and acknowledge his contributions, but I wouldn't want to look past the silliness of the atheistic Buddhism.


    ok, but collectively this seems to be the big issue... i.e. the one that generated the most impassioned social discourse. and to Drew's point... by analogy... you may not have much of an opinion on drunk drivers, but when your family is destroyed by a guy with 3 DWIs driving on a suspended licence this "social issue" becomes real personal.

    I get some of that.

    right. a friend of mine offered a terrific refinement on this idea... what if we changed "discrimination" to "discernment." so, I'm not interested in getting in the whole race discrimination thing, I am about making more refined decisions about how to handle injustice and social equality. part of that requires honestly looking at our history.

    nice.
     
  9. mattvw

    mattvw New

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    I really appreciate you taking the time to answer this Alex. I was going to send this as a personal email originally, but when I saw a few comments that had similar sentiments to the show, I thought I'd do it here so you had a choice to answer publicly or not.

    What I like about your show is the huge heart you walk into every interview with. While holding the caring position you then hold a boundary with the scientific community that is admirable. There are a few times that I've thought your aggressive nature of confront with them might cause more confusion though and thus put them in a defensive posture, possibly losing the thread of the conversation. Certainly though they should be used to that, having their ideas challenged.

    I would question though your thought process in challenging (or not) some of your case by case decisions. You become the judge and jury as to the veracity of the person's point of view and don't feel that some of them have the tolerance to have that viewpoint questioned? Shouldn't you logically approach all the interviews in somewhat of a similar manner, challenging each at least at some level? Couldn't there spiritual perspectives be questioned at a level of usefullness in theirs or other's lives. I say this because I've had many years of spiritual experiences that had value for me in a multitude of ways (and I can express most of those). I hear some of the comments from the "new age" spiritual people and they seem to be parroting what's in their socially acceptable group though many have never taken the time to personally figure out why that might be important for them. Challenging these thoughts may make them come to your interviews more prepared and ready to answer a couple challenging questions. I would hope their spiritual journey's have enabled them to be able to be a bit more challenged.

    Again, I'd love some definitions here: Collectively? What does that mean? I think our history is replete with instances of collective madness. I don't know about you but I find life a crazy thing. There are all sorts of experiences for us to have. Actually I think there are as many experiences as there are people. If you feel connected to that collective action group, knock yourself out. Just know that many other injustices have been done in the name of justice. I think that was one of the beautiful things about the rule of law, though it's a long ways from perfect.

    One of the things I think about almost every day is how life spews out into the world everyday, from trees, veges, animals, stars, planets, parasites to people. That's what happens in this universe. The wild thing is from what we can tell there are no 2 things that are created equal. So if you're trying to create social equality I'd say you're going against nature. I would say historically that more murder and mayhem has been done in the name of righting social injustice and creating social equality than maybe even religion - could be a neck and neck race though.

    My intent here Alex is not to spend days of your time or paragraphs of your blog space in challenging you. That said I think some of your spiritual concepts have not been challenged by you or those that are feeding them to you. I was at Findhorn in the 80's when free love was going on. What a failed spiritual experience that seemed to be, unless that is you were interested in experiencing the pain that came with bad breakups. I've been in retreats in Nepal where everyone sat around nodding the same ideas. It seemed that to question these ideas was not loving or spiritual. That's just not true and is furthering stupidity. These spiritual perspectives can stand on their own. I used to work on people's health from a distance. There's a way to measure that and only apply it if it brings the person receiving the work a change. You have had that experience. You don't need a double blind study to tell you that your health changed because of it. In my experience though, each person needs to find out for themselves if these spiritual practices create changes for themselves or not. They have to question their life experience.

    How about instead of "looking at our history", we look to our own personal history and clean it up. Have you every stolen something from a store or anyone else in your life? If yes, can you clean that up? Have you caused others pain in this life that you can clean up? Have you borrowed money that you didn't pay back? Have you not been there for someone who you told you would be. Maybe it's easier cleaning up the culture's history (whatever that means) than our own personal lives.

    Thanks again for the dialogue. I appreciate your willingness to be challenged.
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  10. Alex

    Alex New

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    Messages:
    2,608
    thx. I always appreciate when folks post rather than email. I like all this stuff to be public :)

    I get what you're saying, and I try and do some of this, but I really just follow my nose... call bullshit where I see it... and maybe go easy on folks that I think deserve a pass. again, my directive is "a journey shared"... so, I just wanta do my thing and then share it with y'all. but I don't mind feedback like this either.



    right, but I think you know what I mean. these kind of social action/resposnibiilty issues are by definetion collective endevors. kinda reminds me of my interview with James Corbett (who I like and admire) where he was advocating volunteerism... I mean, come on... talk about pie-in-the-sky utopian silliness. we live in a hold-you-nose-vote society... no getting around it.


    ok, like what?

    sure, but one doesn't preclude the other (not that you're saying otherwise). moreover, not sure why we wouldn't want to "look at our history." why wouldn't we to "clean it up."
     
    Sciborg_S_Patel likes this.
  11. How much do you get paid for your podcast?

    How is the government funded science doing in the area of consciousness research?

    Before we had government social programs, local communities helped the poor in their own ways. It works. Some countries experience famine today, but government doesn't prevent that, usually it is the cause.
     
  12. Michael2

    Michael2 New

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Messages:
    271
    How does that work (the part I bolded) when the community is an entire country of local communities? Are you saying that existing government infrastructure cannot ever be used to support local communities helping themselves? What happens when a local community is not in a position to help itself?

    I was listening to a report on the radio a few days ago, that compared internet broadband access in two school districts in Mississippi, one rural and one more urban. The urban district schools had excellent broadband access which benefitted the students providing them with easy and free access to online educational resources. In comparison the rural district had extremely slow web access, and students had practically no access to online educational resources. The local internet infrastructure was all old copper wires, and while the school district approached the local provider to upgrade the wiring, the provider maintained it was too costly and could not be done.

    Students in the rural district were at a clear educational disadvantage compared to the other district. The students and parents recognized this but were unable to change the situation. Just so happens that the FCC has a program that provides financial support to local school districts in this exact situation. This program makes funding available to districts so they can built out their own internet infrastructure. So, the district applied for a grant under this FCC program and got it approved. They then used that fact to ask for proposals from the local provider and other providers to built out their intrastructure. Turns out when faced with the certainty they were about to loose this customer, the local provider did a 180 and now said that they could indeed upgrade the infrastructure.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2016
    Alex and Sciborg_S_Patel like this.
  13. mattvw

    mattvw New

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    Totally understand Alex. It IS your show and it's your vibe that draws me, so I'd really rather you not change much. I guess like your bullshit detector turns on for those in the science field who don't actually read or follow the current science literature but make pronouncements. My detector turns on for the "spiritual" dogma that is, I believe, shared but not often personally examined.

    I guess you and I differ here. I don't accept your social action/responsiblity issues. That statement would make sense why you liked Dr. Dellinger's work and why I didn't. Where does this responsibility come from? Is this a spiritual concept? Does someone owe you something? Do you owe others something? I've heard this sort of thing sold often and rarely delivered. I appreciate your belief in it and if it works for you, all the better. I'm not trying to be glib, just not interested in that type of evangelism.

    Alex I really like what you're doing with this podcast and as I type this, I'm pondering how to question your statements without being rude or flippant. I really don't mean to be. The challenge for me as I look at a number of these statements is your use of words and concepts like we, collective, social responsibilities - you get what I'm saying. Do the scientists tell us what we should clean up? Can we trust them to follow the science? Who decides what we should be doing? What powers are they given to force those of us who don't see it that way? Do we have college kids (as Dr. Dellinger is efforting toward) decide this sort of thing and then go out and change the world meanwhile many of them haven't worked, are in debt, have no life experience. Having raised a couple teenagers it seemed they thought they knew how to do everything already. Selling them on the idea of telling others what to do is like selling Marijuana to people in Colorado (very easy to do - in case you weren't sure).

    I totally understand, if this is getting too personal or you see we're just different people and no need to effort at communicating to this guy - wouldn't blame you. In my experience there are as many ways to live these lives as there are people. The longer I live the less I know. That said I'm not easily sold on what I should know, experience, feel, do, be responsible for or believe. I also believe that force and spirituality are terrible bed fellows.

    I truly wish you every success Alex.
     
  14. Most people pay more in taxes than they realize, they pay income taxes, property taxes, if they rent they pay higher rent because the landlord has to consider property taxes when he sets the rent. When they buy something they pay sales tax, and the prices are higher on everything because all the corportations involved in putting the product on the market have to pay taxes and they condiser that when setting prices, this includes the product they buy, the store operator, the transportation that brought the product to the store, multiplied by all the components of the product, plus propterty tax direct or in rent for all the companies that provide supplies that make a product. All these taxes corporations pay doesn't just make things more expensive for poor people to buy, it means there is less money for the corporation to spend on salaries so it reduces what poor people can earn. Also consider the drain on the economy of all the taxes and unneeded regulations that restricts economic growth which keeps incomes lower than otherwise and makes it harder to get a job.

    Then after all this money, some obvious, some unrealized is kept from the taxpayers, so much money that people don't have enough left for their own needs, when the government actually spends some it to benefit the tax payers, they are properly thankful that the government spends their own money on them. And so they vote for more government that spends more money and they have less of their own to spend on their own needs.

    The main cause of poverty is bad government.


    http://www.cnn.com/2010/TRAVEL/05/23/haiti.doctor.volunteer.holiday/
    Mulitply by numbers of other volunteers and numbers of disasters. Why can't governments take care of the people who fund them?
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2016
  15. Alex

    Alex New

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    Messages:
    2,608
    I was trying to make a different point. I was countering what I thought you were saying about "the collective"... i.e. that there isn't one.

    so, it's not a matter of whether you accept "my" social action/responsibility issues... it's a matter of whether you agree there are social action/responsibility issues. and I'm saying that "as a collective" (as a body of people who are gonna vote on shit in order to make laws and then follow those laws) there are always gonna be "social action/responsibility" issues because almost everyone agrees there are. and they might not be the ones you like. that's why Utopian ideas like volunteerism don't work... because at the end of the day you gotta hold your nose and vote (i.e. choose among imperfect options) in order to create rules that create the nice orderly society we all seems to like. anarchy sound like a good idea until someone sticks a gun in your face and says "gimme your shit."
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2016
    Roberta and Steve like this.
  16. Michael2

    Michael2 New

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2015
    Messages:
    271
    I'm not convinced that the problem is as simple as the notion that we pay too much in taxes. Because...while tax rates have gone down in the US....income inequality has gone up. This strongly suggests to me that the solution to poverty is more complicated than simply cutting taxes.

    http://www.epi.org/blog/tax-policy-curb-income-inequality-growth/
    http://www.cfr.org/united-states/income-inequality-debate/p29052

    And of course this
    also strongly suggests that pulling ourselves up by our own bootstraps hasn't been working as advertised for quite some time. We may need some help.

    http://money.cnn.com/2016/01/17/news/economy/oxfam-wealth/index.html

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2016
    Steve likes this.
  17. mattvw

    mattvw New

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2013
    Messages:
    19
    Thanks for clarifying. Yes I missed your point and apologize for shooting off in another direction. I think you an I are now talking about politics, at least the philosophical thought process around the best management system of people, part of politics. Yes there is always an illusion of a collective and it seems like life, whether you believe in the illusion or not, happens. Philosophically speaking the farther we get away from a basic voluntary system and the more into the illusion of a collective system the more chaos will rein - my opinion of course. I'm in my 50's and volunteered for a number of things in my life. Though I don't know if it's something people are doing much of these days. I'm just coming out of the busy time of life raising kids and all, so I've lost track of it. Bye they way, if someone sticks a gun in your face, good luck with police being around. My experience of that part of life is the police are good at collecting information after something happens or charging for tickets and that sort of thing - but I get your point.
     
    Alex likes this.

Share This Page