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Life & Philosophy Nature Psychology

How the mind designs itself

We are always making predictions about our future. When we infer, we ignite consciousness.

Within the complex system of our neurocognitive wiring comes transparency we can’t explain. The external world processes through a symphony of brain loops.

Thinking is on a mission to remain consistent, predictable, while wildly variable. To err is to make strides.

The mind’s chaos is why it works, just as New York City operates a clear system amid bustling streets.

Minds are a byproduct of evolution, structurally optimized to clean themselves out of their internal wiring kinks.

“Evolution depends on the existence of high-fidelity copying but not perfect copying, since mutations (copying errors) are the ultimate source of all novelty.”

Daniel Dennett

Design is simultaneously intelligent and unintelligent, devised to keep pace with our internal weather.

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Life & Philosophy Nature

What are we missing here?

We either open up possibilities for inquiry or close them.

The open-minded tend to include those around them. The shallow-minded prefer to isolate others as a means to an end. Such subjectivity halts the evolution of ideas.

“Our view of the world is truly shaped by what we decide to hear.”

William James
‘Our view of the world is truly shaped by what we decide to hear’
Image via Deaf Hearing and Communication Center

Attitude predetermines whether we discover facts and establish truth.

We put our minds in the world, shaped by the rhythm of nuance and complexity and weave it into a geometry of thought.

We never know for sure when the old world passes away and a new one begins.

All that’s certain are the infinitude of blind spots.

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Life & Philosophy Nature

A barometer of aliveness

Consciousness — “I think therefore I exist” — is not a prerequisite for aliveness.

The non-thinking plant is still very much breathing and communicating with its brethren through an interconnectivity of roots.

Meanwhile, the overly conscious octopus contains a half a billion neurons in its arms which allow the tentacles to function independently from its nine brains.

Programmed robots, aped after humans, may develop mentally but remain devoid of physical life.

Many humans, herd-following automatons in their own right, die with the music still in them.

The barometer of aliveness depends on how dead one feels, appears, and grows.

All things were once plankton. Now, a fish out of water — some of us are lucky enough to evolve like a baby caterpillar into a restless butterfly. 

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Arts Life & Philosophy Nature

Adventure by design

A step into the wilderness with no path in sight, only the certainty of the next crunch of leaves.

One can’t see the forest for the trees without first seeing a tightly sealed version of the world. Each stick of bark aggregates into a sum of parts individually wrapped and bending into each other — passing signals above the shrubby floor.

Nature holds the strongest connection.

For better or worse, it is the humans who have the elemental need to keep moving on terra firma. Unlike running water over rocks, we force progress by messing up the Earth that feeds us.

We put our minds in the void and bleed design everywhere. We build societies, unplanned, over and over again on top of ruins to get history started again. While the left brain was fixated on the individual trees, the right brain was planting new ones.

As they say, “the best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second best time is now.”

gif via tumblr

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Life & Philosophy Nature

Nature doesn’t care

Nature doesn’t care — it devours everything and moves on. The problem becomes when we try to control it.

Like the mind, the more we try to alleviate tension in the world around us, the worse it gets.

We are not directors of the environment. “It’s really the wand that chooses the wizard,” as J.K. Rowling writes in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

We can’t rule nature. The force is too strong.

Instead of seeking to dismantle our surroundings, it would behoove us to make the most of the opportunities that come our way and adapt to the circumstances accordingly.

It is never an escape from the conditions but an expansion of our comfort zone.

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Arts Life & Philosophy Writing

Tying together the world’s attention triggers

Walking with our steady cam, our eyes scan the world. See enough, we write it down.

The more we get down, the more connections we can make — the more disparate items we can intermix the better.

Should we not lace anything, we wait. We given the brain a night’s rest so it can untangle shaggy shapes into coherent bodies of thought.

All of a sudden the ideas come without asking for them, all by turning off.

Reality is a catalog of attention triggers. It is our job to draw analogies across divergent subjects.

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Nature Video

The ultimate leap of faith 🐤

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If you think you’re brave, think again. This skydiving chick makes a steep jump and somehow (somehow!), survives multiple crushing hits on the way down. Unbelievable.

“The resilience of barnacle goose chick is extraordinary,” says the show’s commentator. Yes, indeed.

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Health Life & Philosophy Nature

Prescribing a walk in nature

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Get yourself a prescription to nature. It’ll improve your mental and physical health. That’s according to doctors in Scotland who are recommending that people in the Shetland Islands get outside more often.

The program outlines a recommended outside activity per month. For instance, in January you can create a windsock to grasp the full power of the wind. In March, one can “borrow a dog and take it for a walk.”

Looking for more advice on improving your mental health during these challenging times? Get in on online therapy with BetterHelp, the largest online therapy & counseling platform in the world.

Prescribing a walk in nature
via tw

We belong in the wild, unmoored from the tyranny of our seats. When we disconnect and move outside, we connect with terra firma and reconnect with ourselves. Take your body and thoughts for a walk.  

Categories
Nature Photography

Meet the shoe-billed stork

Talk about a badass beak. This shoe-billed stork lives primarily in swamps from Sudan to Zambia. The bill itself takes 1.5 months from hatching to fully develop. But some think it's the most frightening bird on the planet, as chicks are known to fight each other off to the death with even Mom picking favorites. The five-foot birds are also known to take on crocodiles without any hesitation.  #nature #birds #photography #art

Talk about a badass beak. This shoe-billed stork lives primarily in swamps from Sudan to Zambia. The bill itself takes 1.5 months from hatching to fully develop into its slipper-like shape. But some think it’s the most frightening bird on the planet, as chicks are known to fight each other off to the death with even Mom picking favorites. The five-foot birds are also known to be patient hunters that rip their prey apart, including crocodiles.

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Nature Video

Penguins turn to a life of crime

Penguins can be thieves. They can also be nihilists