Human Versus The Machine

We can’t ignore our incompetency any longer. We can’t compete with our own technology. The machine simply possesses more skill. With its databases, it dwarfs the body of knowledge contained within our heads. It can produce more in a year than the individual human could in an entire lifetime. The effect of this is that society has grown immensely complicated. We struggle to package it all, struggle to aggregate all the confusion into an understandable form but in the midst of all this confusion, one feature of modern society is clear. The individual takes the beating. The machine, including the institutions as part of its apparatus, gets the bailouts, and the imperfect, laboring individual gets very little. We might improve ourselves to stay relevant in this economy, but the machine already surpassed us in aptitude. We don’t possess the brain power to process as much data, and we can’t obtain first hand experience in all facets of life. We’re no more omnicompetent and omnipresent than animals.

We really have underestimated animals. We’ve vastly overestimated ourselves. The animal is thought to lack reason and intelligence, but many times it is us who can’t see what is plain and obvious. We can’t eat money. We can’t use objects as surrogate companions. Knowing this, we chase money and collect meaningless objects anyway. When is humanity perfectly reasonable? Do we not find ourselves in a dark place surrounded by liars, con artists, thieves, murderers, and rapists? If we really are superior to animals, we certainly don’t show it. In order to rise above our primal instincts, we must understand our limitations. To progress as a species, we must admit to building unmanageable superstructures. We’ve created parasitical corporations. We’ve created governments and other complex, oppressive bodies that disenfranchise and demoralize the individual. We’re rightfully concerned with these institutions, for they seldom bolster humanity and many times end up corrupting it.

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The Arc: Connection To God

The arc is the missing link that connects us to God. It’s the valuable key. It unites the positive and the negative and bridges the ultimate gap. It enables the opposing forces to coalesce just as the yin and the yang brilliantly illustrates. Isn’t it magnificent that one symbol can tell the whole story? The arc closes the circuit of life. Once we close the circuit, only then will we have our power. Or expressed in a different way, we re-establish our connection to God. We would finally hook ourselves into the real. We would restore our impeccable vision. There’d be no need to concoct scams to make slews of money and no desire to pathologically chase orgasm after orgasm. Though this doesn’t describe us now, does it? It certainly doesn’t describe the place in which we find ourselves. Humanity may not literally eat each other. Although spiritually and emotionally, humans are as cannibalistic as they come. What happened to this arc? What happened to the cornerstone, the missing piece that brings life together, raises it, and sets it back to harmony? Did someone steal it? Did we give it away? Maybe, deep down we know what transpired that day the arc went missing. We’d like to forget, but we were the culprits. We were the guilty who were caught in the act. We scorched paradise. Humanity detonated the arc and gawked at its spectacular explosion. The bright lights fell from the sky, streaked back to Earth as we stood there paralyzed and dumbfounded. The past is not past. We destroyed the star. We severed the umbilical cord and killed Jesus. After all, aren’t we all so strong and independent? We believed we alone could take care of ourselves. We thought we didn’t need a connection to God.

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Beauty and the Beast

To all who suffer from delusions of grandeur, none of us have the answer. We don’t have a perfect conception of reality. Our capability and breadth of knowledge are far too limited and for this reason, there exist layers of perception. Sometimes there is no right answer. At other times, the answer exists, but we purposely blind ourselves to it. We sabotage our ability to see it. It is, however, within our power to change this. We can chip away at the stereotypes and fixed associations that dominate our minds. We can understand that stereotypes can contain an element of truth, and we can also recognize them as oversimplified representations of reality. We can do all of this. We can do this despite the world heading in the opposite direction. Arrogance is on the rise. Intelligence is in decline. The average human beings are living but in many ways are dead. They behave is if they’re collections of fixed thought patterns, believing their perspectives represent the whole of the law. They cast those who violate their law as villains who deserve to be silenced. They preach tolerance but bully those with whom they disagree. They promote awareness but react aggressively at any form of criticism. Who does this remind us of? Who is the emperor of all hypocrites, the king of all liars? That being is the beast, and this beast aims to corrupt humankind. It wants to pervert sexuality, reason, and good will; it wants to dispatch these perversions as weapons to destroy humanity.

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Lost in the World of Lies

There are invisible rulers who control the destines of millions. It is not generally realized to what extent the words and actions of our most influential public men are dictated by shrewd persons operating behind the scenes. Nor, what is still more important, the extent to which our thoughts and habits are modified by authorities. In some departments of our daily life, in which we imagine ourselves free agents, we are ruled by dictators exercising great power.
Edward Bernays, Propaganda

People love their fiction. They’re absorbed in their stories. They emulate the characters they admire and believe it’s all harmless fun. Though that’s not really the case, is it? Is it ever only entertainment? Have we ever wondered why the plots and dialogue are fashioned the way they are? Tough questions like these might just be too much for people. Once lured too deep into the fiction, they lose their bearings. They have trouble finding their way back. That might not even matter as they enjoy deceiving themselves. Like the famous actors we recognize on screen, they have their own starring roles, and they love it. They love playing characters. Although, the characters don’t really exist, do they? They exist as two dimensional images captured on a roll of film. They’re encoded into ones and zeros on a hard drive. Reality as they know it is one tremendous, elaborate lie. At first glance, the lie might seem comforting, but it really isn’t. It’s definitely more torturous. They forfeit their true identities and once that occurs, there’s a chance they might be lost forever. Unfortunately, people have been functioning in the pseudo-reality for some time. Playing the character has become second nature. This transition makes them more malleable than they previously were. They presume to know what they like, but the writers told them what to like. They presume to know what to say, but the writers instructed them on what to say. People are characters. They are lifeless, carved wooden figurines; they’re works of imagination found in fables and fairy tales.

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The Benefits of Suffering

Pain is inevitable and so is suffering. Many believe otherwise, but suffering is not optional. Those who disagree inevitability deny the nature of existence and as long as there are hearts and consciences, there will be suffering. We can bury our humanity. We can cremate our care, but what we can’t do is deny our humanity or at least what’s left of it. In this world, can we realistically and consciously choose not to suffer? When bureaucracies bleed dry the heart of humanity, can we really not suffer as a result? I don’t think so. As in the Japanese movie, Ikiru, the cowardly bureaucrats ignore the plight of the people. They take no risks. They sit down, shut up, and obey their orders. This is the pitiful nature of the bureaucrat. They prioritize keeping their jobs, not challenging the status quo over improving their own community. It is a sorrowful situation, but doesn’t this sound familiar? After all, bureaucrats today are so terrified of endangering their means of a regular income that they end up valuing self-interest over compassion. Staying employed is the chief priority. Being a good person is at best secondary. Despite these moral failings, their fear over losing status is actually valid. A civilization centered around money has little to no remorse. Without a respectable livelihood, our society, which is only civil on the surface, swiftly casts you out. You will be stigmatized and quarantined. It will be as if you were infected with a deadly contagion. Is this what it means to be human? We forsake and despise each other for such insignificant conditions of life. This is what happens when we permit suffering to fester and destroy ourselves. We can do better. We can do better by channeling our collective suffering into bettering the world.

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Virtues Of Being The Fool

The Fool from Tarot de Marseille by Nicolas Conver
The Fool
from Tarot de Marseille
by Nicolas Conver /
Wikimedia Commons /
Public Domain

Everyone has their tragic life story. In certain ways, each of us experiences life kicking us into submission. Our eyes and our mouths swell, bleed, and collect bits of dirt. We can classify this experience however we want. We can describe it using abstract names like oppression or discrimination, but this beating is not particular to you. Granted some have it exponentially harder than others but in reality, life’s boot has no eyes to see. The boot doesn’t see race, nationality, gender, nor creed. The world isn’t against you personally. If you feel personally victimized, get over yourself. The world is just that callous. The world is just that ruthless where you’re crawling out from underneath its boot, and the sun maims you. The insects burrow into you. The wind embeds dirt into your flesh, and the boot keeps kicking. Even as you lie still and mounds of dirt build on top of you, the boot doesn’t stop kicking. It takes a tremendous amount of strength to even stand up. Although, if we can’t get off our stomachs and our knees, what does that accomplish for us? We stay down, and we join the ranks of the living dead.

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Life That Tilts Off Balance

Every period has its bias, its particular prejudice and its psychic ailment. An epoch is like an individual; it has its own limitations of conscious outlook, and therefore requires a compensatory adjustment.
~Carl Jung, Modern Man in Search of a Soul

Balance is the magic word. It opens doors. Not only figurative passageways but it opens actual, physical doors. Take a car just submerged in water for example. The pressure imbalance holds the doors tightly shut. For the opening to materialize, the pressure must equalize. Once equilibrium is complete, life can resume and possibilities can flourish. The human intellect seeks this balance as well. We trap ourselves and create unnecessary problems if we give too much importance to a particular viewpoint. Time and time again we realize our speculations and agreed upon truths were imperfect and were unable to hold up against impartial scrutiny and behaving like the fools we are, we swing our theories and facts completely in the opposite direction. We overcompensate for our inaccuracies. As we do this, we catapult ourselves further away from truth. Today we completely disregard archaic wisdom in favor of scientific materialism and end up almost as blind as our ancestors. Our ancestors placed overwhelming emphasis on the supernatural. We do the same today with science and technology. Science squashed the supernatural, and in many ways we benefited from that. However, the choice to depend wholly on science is marked by serious flaws. Science only studies and diagnoses the physical heart, and it neglects the intangible, the heart and soul of humanity. How can the intangible heart be salvaged? How can the meaning of life be resurrected? We live in times of strife and human indecency while under the supreme authority of science. By overemphasizing matter, we’ve been hit with a spiritual crisis.

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Temperance And Mastering Our Desires

Temperance by Piero del Pollaiolo
by Piero del Pollaiolo /
Wikimedia Commons /
Public Domain

The world pays no mind to what we think makes us happy. Do we even dare to say what makes us happy? Are our thoughts even ours, or were they surreptitiously planted by ministers of propaganda? This might sound far-fetched, but fools scoff at being shown who they really are. That’s how ignorance reinforces itself. Ignorance behaves like a parasite that obstinately stays alive no matter the deadly strain put on the host. Ignorance turns us into empty vessels too. As hollow and vulnerable beasts, we allow our base desires to dictate our words, our choices, and our likes and dislikes. We need to watch out as this can be exploited. Armed with this information, knowledgeable men mold our desires to a form they deem appropriate. What’s more worrisome is that they could, at their discretion, even implant new desires, new desires as in new opportunities to exploit. That’s why it’s more important than ever to master the self. Our world disseminates half truths and outright lies. The same world jams honest transmissions expressing pure truth. As long as we’re slaves to our desires, whether sexual, social, financial, digestive, or psychological, we’re apt and ready tools for powerful men of industry. Only when we once more value virginity, restraint, and temperance will we earn our emancipation from this fallen world.

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