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Life & Philosophy Nature

What are we missing here?

gif via tumblr

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. Evolution halts.

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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Categories
Life & Philosophy Nature

The world is colossal

gif via BBC Earth

The world is still colossal, a gaping map of mystery our brains fill in with imagination.

It’s delusional to think we know it.

Thankfully, any time we traverse the planet we’re awakened by our own trained incapacity, an ignorance blind to nature’s surprises.

The ever sprawling internet promises to teach us a few things, but it’s just an appetizer.

If we want to know the world, we have to drive around it. Exploration is the only way to coalesce the wonders out of the world.

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Categories
Culture world

Clash of civilizations

America and Western Europe have stagnated while China dives into its newfound riches.

Ethnic nationalism is on the rise while the liberal globalist elite does nothing to stem the tide, too occupied in complaining about the ‘deplorables’ on their devices while ordering more wine from Amazon and posting selfies on Instagram.

The myth that no two countries with McDonald’s refuse to fight each other appears to be just that. Realism is back, manifesting itself through the whims of protectionism.

Are we doomed to conflict?

Not necessarily. It is in these moments that pessimism and inventiveness coexist.

Wrote British historian Thomas Babington Macauley in 1830:

“We cannot absolutely prove that those are in error who tell us that society has reached a turning point, that we have seen our best days. But so said all before us, and with just as much apparent reason . . . On what principle is it that, when we see nothing but improvement behind us, we are to expect nothing but deterioration before us?”

We can get out of this rut. Doom and gloom is the end all for worrying times. Tribalism can be cured, as can the negative aspects of nationalism.

There is a good side to bad problems that expose a weakness in the international order. But instead of whining in our own filter bubbles, we can use the moment to cushion against discontent.

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Uncategorized

Arvo Pärt – Silouans Song

Image courtesy of Kaupo Kikkas

Arvo Pärt is Estonian composer of classical and religious music, known for creating his own minimalist style of “little bell” sounds which he calls Tintinnabuli. Here’s how he describes it:

“Tintinnabulation is an area I sometimes wander into when I am searching for answers – in my life, my music, my work. In my dark hours, I have the certain feeling that everything outside this one thing has no meaning. The complex and many-faceted only confuses me, and I must search for unity. What is it, this one thing, and how do I find my way to it? Traces of this perfect thing appear in many guises – and everything that is unimportant falls away. Tintinnabulation is like this. . . . The three notes of a triad are like bells. And that is why I call it tintinnabulation.”

His track ‘Silouans Song’ is a spiritual tune that came out in 2006 but I just heard it in a Benji B radio show co-hosted with Joy Orbison, so it’s fresh to me.

According to his Wikipedia page, Pärt has also been one of the most-performed living composers for the last five years. Bjork is also a huge fan!

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Categories
Arts Culture Life & Philosophy Politics & Society

Postponement…

The foundation pen: it slows down your writing thereby strengthening the complexity/simplicity of your thoughts. At some point the prose will need to be digitized.

Global warming: it accelerates the seasons so the weather is fickle all the time. We are living in the data without imminent catastrophe, hence the lack of urgency.

Nationalism: its rerise imbalances world order, making countries ripe to engage in games of zero-sum. An empire falls.

We sacrifice the long-game for short-term gains. The little things add up until they trigger an emergency. Yet, the alarm was on the whole time.

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Categories
Life & Philosophy Politics & Society

Reverting to inclination

‘America first’ breeds an architecture of fear. It compels other nations to cling onto their own nationalist tendencies in pursuit of their own primacy.

The internet flattened world only temporarily before mobile phones made people screen-obsessed and non-interactive, further pigeonholing them into online groups that merely reconfirmed their biased beliefs.

As conformity increased in the long tail, broader differences compounded. Today’s mob has repopularized coercion out of short term gains. What comes naturally puts a dent into the artificiality of freedom.

If America gives up doing the good work, others will fall like dominoes. Bad design is easy to replicate.

If you're an artist, photographer, writer, etc., I highly recommend creating your own blog and publishing something new every day (read my post on how to set up a FREE blog on Wordpress).