No Self

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  1. @Mesopotamian Interesting footage. They never like it when their time is up. Still probably better than Muammar Gaddafi's end.
  2. After his glory days of the '70s, Saddam did wind up being a primitive and inhumane ruler, but I have no idea how to assess whether his deposition was a good thing overall for Iraq. I would not totally trust the Western media on this, which is largely all I have access to. Many countries with bad rulers (Yugoslavia, Syria, Democratic Republic of the Congo) have wound up in even worse trouble following the demise of the dictator. No doubt this syndrome has at least partly afflicted Iraq; to what degree I cannot say. That's where my knowledge ends. It's human nature to want to demonise some people whilst venerating others, which is how our egos define their boundaries. But actual reality always winds up being more nuanced.
  3. Honestly, GWB had a background in the oil industry and was motivated by supporting it. The US previously supported Saddam when it was convenient. There are worse leaders than GWB in history, but environmentalism is the last thing we should be thanking him for.
  4. He by himself would have been unlikely to cause much trouble. Ditto for Hitler and others. Humanity wants to blame everything but itself, which unfortunately ensures progress will be minimal. I believe there are mechanisms in the bigger picture to balance the extremes of unfairness and injustice that we appear to witness here. But if there is only one of us, it becomes harder to judge anything as good or bad.
  5. Hydrogen cars are out there, and can derive their fuel from water (but usually it's a fossil fuel byproduct). They may not catch on as they still require electricity, and it's more efficient for a vehicle to be a full EV without the middleman. Claims of perpetual motion machines, etc., are considered pseudoscience. If I can call my solar panels 'free energy', they are pretty awesome, though.
  6. People forming into tribes is a tendency going back millions of years. The intellectual excuse-making to relieve cognitive dissonance might be a bit more recent, though. No doubt there is some value in each of the religions' teachings, too, but community is the real name of the game.
  7. Definitely relatable. I think I try - where possible - and offer a counterpoint/contrarian perspective in every possible situation to encourage people to expand out of their closed-minded bubbles. My subconscious intention is probably creating a more enlightened world so I would feel more accepted and less of a misfit. I don't know how effective this is - probably creates the opposite of what my mind intends.
  8. I still remember the crude example he used to illustrate the point, too! But the mind must be even more than that since it remains to some degree even after the death of the body. Using art as an example, the brain must be capable of connecting with infinity, but by definition it is itself finite, having a limited number of neurons.
  9. Of course. But so is everything else in my mind.
  10. Xenu ...was, according to Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, the dictator of the "Galactic Confederacy" who brought billions[4][5] of his people to Earth (then known as "Teegeeack") in DC-8-like spacecraft 75 million years ago, stacked them around volcanoes, and killed them with hydrogen bombs. Official Scientology scriptures hold that the thetans (immortal spirits) of these aliens adhere to humans, causing spiritual harm. Yes, indeed. Has there ever been a more incendiary word in all of history? Surely, truth is truth regardless of what words we use.
  11. Truth be told, I had never paid attention to the term anti-natalist until someone brought it up here the other day. I find it interesting, but environmentalism rather than 'life is bad' would be my reason for thinking similarly. As for experiences, my grandmother spent the last few years of her life in an aged care facility, unable to recognise her own family, unsure of where she was and almost in a vegetative state. I had an uncle hang himself after turning 70. It was pretty barbaric. Then consider the huge financial cost of keeping people alive for those last few years... Meanwhile, there are kids on the streets. Pure insanity.
  12. Yes, it's a difficult one. The pep talk and can-do attitude of motivational speakers is indeed the optimal approach for constructive self-improvement, yet this does not mean that anyone can do anything in practice. This sets up certain people to fail, then fall through the cracks due to age, physical/mental disability or whatever, only to be further put down by society since we only like to hear success stories. Having a bias towards stories of overcoming hardships and heroic survival is a mindset with an evolutionary/survivalist significance, but is not the same thing as unbiased truth. Offering people humane end-of-life choices is something that I feel we should support, even if we do not understand what might lead people to need such a thing, and regardless of whether it is in our own evolutionary self-interest to turn a blind eye to the darkest aspects of life.
  13. Sadly, due to Dunning-Kruger, the end result is that the most incompetent and narcissistic people will gleefully pump out new life, while the more thoughtful will abstain. It takes intelligence to recognise a lack of intelligence.
  14. A master would say something like, "Find out Who You Are, then do whatever you please."
  15. Main thing will be buying a house and establishing a small passive income, perhaps a second house to lease out. You'll be free to travel and explore while still having a home to return to.
  16. It's well and good to have a wish-list, but who is going to implement it? The billionaire class own the entire media (CNN, Fox, Facebook...) and set the tone for political discourse which in turn gives us governments and law. Even when the population is angry, their frustration can easily be manipulated to result in further tax cuts for the rich, or to encourage poor people to cannibalise each other, both of which were themes during the Trump era. It becomes a runaway effect in which having too much power results in amassing even more power at an ever-faster rate. And something has to give. I do not know what the result will be.
  17. This is a very natural response for most people. The huge flaw is that we taboo into oblivion the voices of people who are actually living through some sort of nightmare scenario. We dismiss them as 'negative' or 'sick' and instead bombard society with imagery of people who are young or beautiful or wealthy for 'inspiration'. Through this grossly distorted lens, we then conclude that life is peachy and nobody should have a right to leave.
  18. Wait, you're using commonsense? Get outta here! A question of this magnitude deserves a deep exploration. The amount of suffering visited upon a being with shithouse parents is absolutely unimaginable; the 'gift' that keeps on giving. And yet, the most thoughtless people will have the most children - cult leaders, religious extremists, drug addicts, etc. being extreme examples. Added to this, our economic reality is gravitating towards a scenario where the majority of people are serfs who have little or no hope of ever achieving freedom or financial independence. And did I mention the dwindling state of the environment? Or the toxic political climate at just about every level? What does make sense, at least in theory, is trying to help children who are already here.
  19. There is a very real effect that causes distress and symptoms to sufferers, but psychosomatic illness is ultimately created by the mind. The prevalence of fake news factories on social media has turned the situation into a much broader societal health problem with no end in sight. My favourite anecdote was a woman who reported that she couldn't sleep with Wi-Fi on. The kids would pretend that they turned it off and she then slept like a log!
  20. Ah, the old pro-life vs. pro-choice debate. Any humane person would support a terminally ill person who would otherwise go through a final few days of unimaginable suffering to instead die with dignity. Any reasonable person would not support a moody 13 year old ending their life. So it instead becomes a question of where to draw the line. Spain's latest proposal, whereby an individual must request multiple times over a period of time and pass certain requirements, sounds spot on. But for most of the world, the dominance of pro-life dogma will force many to resort to barbaric methods like hanging, unless one pulls a rabbit out of a hat to obtain Nembutal or similar. How very stone age.
  21. The main issue with present day capitalism seems to be the emergence of younger generations who will never be able to attain a basic standard of secure living no matter how hard they work. Conversely, the billionaire class cannot help but rake in more billions no matter what they do. This takes us dangerously close to the monopoly of power held by aristocracies or communist governments of bygone centuries, all of which were ultimately failed societies.
  22. Trump himself seems to rely on a sort of intuition. His supporters are mostly a part of a mob mentality (as with many of his opponents). They say intuition is a skill that can be enhanced with effort. I cannot comment from experience, though.
  23. Would be interested to know what is meant by the term 'flow state'? Cheers!