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About GeorgeLawson

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  1. Yes, you could say that - technically youtube can do whatever it likes. The question is, if an organisation gets so large, such as youtube, google, twitter, etc., does its censorship need to be regulated by an unbiased third party? After all, it seems youtube has become the new TV now for a lot of people, so it is therefore likely to have power over people's perceptions. Then again, is there even such thing as an unbiased third party? Anyone who censors something will have motivation for doing so, be that 'good' or 'bad,' (and of course judging whether or not a decision is 'good' or 'bad' is motivated by the person holding the judgement). By censoring what youtube are or are not allowed to censor based on ideals of free speech or whatever, you're essentially taking the problem back a level. For example, who censors the censor who is censoring youtube? It just becomes a paradoxical chain with no resolution. Therefore the decision on whether to allow or ban a video has to lie with one person or organisation. And in this case, I agree with you, Space Coyote, it should probably be youtube's decision because it's their private platform. And as Leo just mentioned, leadership comes with great responsibility, and youtube has a great responsibility in today's media world. With all the God-knows-how-many videos uploaded every day, I certainly don't envy the careful balancing act youtube management have of sifting through each one, censoring the potentially harmful videos and allowing the videos which have a right to be there because of free speech. If you're going to be truly free, shouldn't youtube just allow every single video that gets uploaded? No, that would be a disaster! Like the video Leo shared earlier of the girl who got coronavirus after believing the narrative that it's not harmful when in truth it is, it's definitely possible for the spread of certain information to have a harmful effect on people's behaviour. Meanwhile, you have to maintain free speech as well, which is what I mean by it being a careful balancing act for the censors. Interestingly, I don't think youtube used to have such heavy censorship in its earlier days, but that was probably before it reached the popularity it enjoys today. I agree with you there - wisdom is not the same as freedom, and is, to me, more valuable than freedom. In fact, counter-intuitively feeling free doesn't come with having freedom, but having self-discipline, which itself stems from wisdom. Here's what I suggest: There's no reason why people should love anything. People love things regardless of the moral obligation to do so. As for your concerns about youtube's censorship, in the end, it doesn't matter. Even if youtube became some devilish propaganda machine, it's your responsibility, and the responsibility of every youtube viewer to determine for themselves what is true and false. If you allow youtube, or any media for that matter to shape your perceptions, then you're responsible for the behaviour that results from those perceptions. It's called critical thinking. The issue not with the information coming from the media, which may well be full of lies anyway; it's with whether or not you are lazy enough to believe what youtube and the media tell you, or whether you are open-minded enough to entertain a truth claim, and then test it in your own direct experience to see if it holds mustard.
  2. The word 'conspiracy' comes from the latin 'conspirare' which means 'to breathe together.' So all the word itself means is people working together towards a common purpose, whether you interpret that as evil or good. You could conspire with others to do something seen as good, like plant trees, or something seen as bad, like murder people. So I agree with the point made earlier that society itself is a conspiracy; it's people realising that it's better to conspire than to work things out on our own. There's nothing mysterious about that. Why do people believe in theories, be they true or false, about groups of people working towards a shared goal (in other words, conspiracy theories) ? The same reason people believe anything, I suppose; it supports their ego's survival. A more interesting question for me to contemplate, though is; "how can we as a society conspire towards greater consciousness?"
  3. As I'm sure many of you on this forum share, I have always been fascinated by the question; 'How do you discover what's true?' and yet am still unable to answer it. It appears that during the current virus lockdown we have had a lot more time than usual to self-reflect and contemplate what truth means to us. Then again, we've also had a lot more time to get dragged into conspiracy theories, because we have a fear of not knowing, and want to fabricate assumptions of what's true from the comfort of our own bedrooms and youtube videos. I don't know about you, but after everything, I've got to be completely honest with you all; I don't know. I never have and I don't know if I ever will. But I don't mind this. In fact, if I knew then there wouldn't be anything left to discover, learn or be curious about. The game would be over, so to speak. As Peter Ralston said in The Book of Not Knowing: 'Whenever you or I learn anything, “not-knowing” has occurred – whether we intend it, or we haven’t a clue that it is taking place. Even when we try sliding quickly through not knowing to get to knowing, somewhere in there not-knowing has occurred or learning didn’t happen.' Not knowing, then must be the foundation of discovering what's true. I can't begin with any truth claim, because that would bias my investigation - I'd much rather begin with a clean slate, and be prepared to clean off the slate all the bullshit that will undoubtedly worm its way onto there. The hypocrisy of conspiracy theories lies in their claim that authority systems such as governments get the people to believe their ideologies through fear. All the while, the conspiracy theories are guilty of the exact same mechanism - the spreading of fear in order to get people to buy into their ideologies. The etymology of the word 'conspiracy' originates from the Latin 'conspirare,' literally 'to breathe together.' A group of people could conspire together to do something either 'good' or 'bad,' whichever way you interpret it. You could conspire to murder someone, conspire to build a hospital or school, or even conspire to create a conspiracy theory. Either way, a conspiracy is simply a working together of people, by definition, be that for 'good' or 'evil.' Who do you trust to tell you the truth? Whoever you trust, you're delegating the responsibility of truth to an authority. That seems too lazy a solution for me. I would rather allow direct, first-hand experience to guide me. I went for a walk in the fields earlier, where there no people, (luckily), and the information I was receiving through my direct senses; the sight of bright yellow rapeseed scattering the fields, the sound of a bee buzzing by, the smell of the pines, the taste of fresh air, the feeling of the blades of grass in my hands... These experiences seemed to speak truth more genuinely to me than the bullshit we've been using to make sandcastles with online. So can we, the people of this forum, conspire together to discover what's true? I don't think so. That's what religion and science have been trying to do for a long time and their progress is questionable, to say the least. This is probably because truth-discovery is an individual, not a collective endeavour. What we can do, though, is share techniques and methods for discovering truth, and report to each other the effectiveness of these techniques after doing the hard of work of trying them out. So let's have it. What are your favourite truth-discovery techniques and why?
  4. I lived in China for two years and yes, you can access the forum, but none of the videos work. I tried using VPN but the connection was really unreliable so in the end, I downloaded the mp3 audios to the videos so I could listen to the content uninterrupted. I hope this helps - It can be frustrating trying to access high-consciousness resources like this in China.
  5. @Alex bAlex I'm not sure I can help with the psychedelics part, but going back to your original question; 'How do we develop creativity skills?' I have some advice: One of the main obstacles to creating works of art is resistance. No matter what you want to create, be it a book, painting, film, etc. there will always be a deep sense of fear about actually getting started, along with a plethora of potential distractions like social media or youtube that can take you away from your work because, to your resistance, those activities are so much easier than focusing on the task at hand. One way to overcome resistance, I suppose, would be to begin by noticing where it manifests in your life specifically, because it's different for different people. Finally, having overcome resistance, you can get started on actually creating the art you want to make, and you'll get more creative the more you practice overcoming resistance and getting on with the work.
  6. @John Lula Thanks for the advice. I'll try it out.
  7. About a year ago I downloaded microsoft onenote after Leo's advice in his episode on keeping a commonplace book. I think this is a fantastic idea and the commonplace book has been extremely useful in keeping all my self-help notes organised. The problem is is that it's now starting to freeze whenever I try to type something new and I have to keep restarting it. Could it be because I'm using a mac with this instead of a PC? Having a mac also means I can't save my notes locally, which is another issue. Does anyone have any advice on how to solve this problem? Has anyone experienced anything similar using onenote on mac? Any advise would be much appreciated. Thanks.
  8. Thanks guys
  9. I've always had conflicting advice about sleep. Some people have recommended I wake up early, as early as 5:30am so I can be productive and get things done, whereas others have recommended I wake up late because I can't be productive anyway if I'm tired and need the extra rest. I suppose this all boils down to four questions I'm still confused about: 1. Assuming you want to be healthy, how many hours of sleep should an adult human being get every night? 2. When should you go to sleep? 3. When should you wake up? 4. What should you do if you have insomnia or can't get to sleep? Any advice would be much appreciated as I would love to sort out my sleeping patterns once and for all. Thanks.
  10. Neil Young - Cortez the Killer Angus & Julia Stone - Yellow Brick Road Israel Nask Gripka - Rainplans Bettye LaVette - The High Road Townes Van Zandt - To Live is to Fly James Vincent McMorrow - We Don't Eat Scott Matthews - Piano Song Jackson Browne - Farther On Rodriguez - Sandrevan Lullaby (Just some of my all-time favourites...)
  11. Hi @Michael569, thanks for the post. I can empathise as I'm in a similar situation myself, along with probably many others. My advice is that, if you are trying to actualise on your purpose but are stuck in a dead-end job to pay the bills until you make that all important job transition, then make the most of the pockets of time you have now. Presumably you're not working all the time, so you'll be able to fit in an hour here and there and focus completely on purposeful work. These might be small steps, but they're better than nothing. Also, have a vision to get you through the bullshit situation and toxic people. You could have a mission statement, which includes your life purpose statement and a brief description of it which you review daily. Just re-reading this and developing it will keep you inspired and keep your head above the sea bullshit for the time being.
  12. As it turns out I broke up with my girlfriend a few weeks after commenting on that post. It was true that she was meeting physical and emotional relationship needs but was providing hardly any intellectual or spiritual needs. In fact, the reason I was staying with her was mainly out of comfort and security rather than what I knew in my heart was right. It was very emotionally challenging but I gained huge growth from leaving that relationship and felt a lot more centred and authentic. That's a good idea to define would I really need out of a girlfriend. Otherwise I may lack a sense of direction in my future relationships. Thanks.
  13. @tashawoodfall Thanks for sharing. It turns out I have what seems like the same problem in my own intimate relationship and I came to this forum today to ask for advice on the same thing: How can I reconcile the fact that I have a great relationship with my girlfriend; she loving, supportive, funny, sexy and kind and yet she's not in the least bit interested in self-actualisation? In fact, I've asked if she'd be interested in meditation but she just dismisses it as 'bullshit.' And to be honest, I don't want to force self-actualisation upon her because I know that that's something she has to discover for herself as I did myself a few years ago. Is it possible to have a satisfying, intimate relationship with someone who is not interested in self-actualisation or ready to hear about it?
  14. I've been struggling with this one too, but realised that if you take it slower, and aim at 'pleasing her rather than yourself,' the climax is so much more satisfying. I found that reading 'Way of the Superior Man' by David Deida really helped me get in touch with my sexuality. Here are a couple of quotes I think might help you: p.51 ‘Every moment of your life is either a test or a celebration. The same is true about every moment with your woman, only doubly so. Not only is her simple existence a test for you, but one of her deepest pleasures in intimacy is testing you, and then feeling you are not moved off course by her challenge.’ a.k.a try and think of it as your woman testing you; she's seeing how much self-control you have so that she knows she can trust you in the relationship. This idea of 'testing for trust' is expanded upon in the next quote: p.51 ‘The most erotic moment for a woman is feeling that you are Shiva, the divine masculine: unperturbable, totally loving, fully present, and all-pervading. She cannot move you, because you already are what you are, with or without her. She cannot scare you away, because you already penetrate her in fearless love, pervading her heart and body. She cannot distract you, because your one-pointed commitment to truth will not bend to her wiles. Feeling this hugeness of love and freedom in you, she can trust you, utterly, and surrender her testing in celebration of love.’ I wouldn't consider myself Shiva yet, and can give in to temptation quite easily, but this is definitely what I'm aiming for... Good luck!
  15. This is a particularly interesting question to contemplate for me because I'm British, grew up in the UK and met my Chinese girlfriend at University there. Now I'm currently living in China with her and about to start work here as a TEFL teacher. I have to start by saying that this relationship has been a truly positive, growth-inducing experience so far. It has given me the opportunity to develop compassion for human beings regardless of cultural background and race. Not that I was particularly closed-minded beforehand, but having been raised in a generally middle class, white, conservative British background, I feel as though I've been thrown in the deep end and out of my comfort zone by moving over here. The thrill of the experience has really lifted my mood as well, and my girlfriend has been caring and understanding every step of the way. Yes, we have our conflicts, and the main one is, unsurprisingly, to do with language. She's pretty amazing at English, (our relationship is based on this language as I'm only beginning to speak basic Mandarin), but we still encounter a few issues when trying to have 'deep' conversations. Sometimes she gets quite upset because she's trying to explain complex emotional feelings which simply doesn't have the language for. I hope that one day I can develop my Mandarin to a point where I can communicate with her complex emotional feelings and attitudes through language... I've also discovered that the Chinese have deep-rooted Confucian values (similar to the traditional Christian values I experienced in the West). These seem to either consciously or sub-consciously run people's lives here and show-up most boldly in their group-mentality. The Chinese, in general, therefore seem to want to do EVERYTHING together, which is great if you're an extrovert I suppose - but I'm not; I am and always have been an introvert. I sometimes worry therefore that I have less time for solitary activities I enjoy like meditation, reading, writing, contemplation, etc. because I'm constantly being invited now to gatherings for extended family and friends (which my girlfriend's family seem to have every night)! I don't mean to criticise their culture in any way - they're incredibly loving and welcoming people - but sometimes I feel as though I lack to the time to enjoy one of my highest values in life; solitude. Luckily, though, I've discussed this with my girlfriend and she's more than willing to give me space whenever I need it. As mentioned by others, I agree that it's not really a good idea to look for a partner based on race/culture, whether they're from yours or not. Just find someone based on their qualities as a human being and go from there. And if you really want to avoid a relationship with someone from your own culture, my best advice is to go travelling.