You are currently browsing the monthly archive for March 2010.
I would have otherwise titled this “Love the Sinner, hate the sin — my ass” quote James Allen:
“It is better to love than to accuse and denounce. There is that outburst of passion which is called “righteous indignation,” and it appears to be righteous, but looked at from a higher conception of conduct it is seen to be not righteous. There is a certain stamp of nobility about indignation at wrong or injustice, and it is certainly far higher and nobler than indifference, but there is a loftier nobility still, by which it is seen that indignation is never necessary, and where love and gentleness take its place, they overcome the wrong much more effectually. A person that is apparently wronged requires our pity, but the one who wrongs requires still more our compassion, for he is ignorantly laying up for himself a store of suffering: he must reap the wrong he is sowing. When divine compassion is perceived in its fullness and beauty, indignation and all forms of passion cease to exercise any influence over us.”
1. I constantly find the Sin-Sinner dichotomy hard to believe as the common saying “Love the sinner, hate the sin” constantly goes. If you look at it objectively, it is the sinner that is punished (in crude christian terms, going to hell) plus the sin is within the sinner, by hating the sin you hate the committer of the sin. (Makes sense?)
2. And to put things in ugly perspective, most of us probably “love the sin and hate the sinner” instead. We love the pleasures of (some) sins and how it brings delight to our human flesh — but we cannot stand it when some other person does it. Something indignant rises within us to accuse them to reaffirm out self superiority. But lest we look judgmental, we need to cover up with a rosier and politer saying, “love the sinner, hate the sin”.
3. I’m more amused by the line “Love the Christ, hate the Christian” (not an actual quote =P)– which is a reality quite common these days. Like Mahatma Gandhi said “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”
It is disturbing/interesting that its easier to separate Christ from the concept of a Christian than sin from the concept of the sinner. After the long ramble, I point to the above message again. Perhaps more emphasis needs to be given to that instead of “you’re going to hell, heathen!”
But as I would always emphasise — is this Love a root or is this merely a fruit of something greater?
I want a trip inside your head
Spend the day there
To hear the things you haven’t said
To see what you might see
Miracle Drug – U2
Not so easy lol. Ever played a Labyrinth?
I’ve been told multiple times by multiple people that they never really know what goes on in my head, its impossible to get into what I’m thinking, that its all a mystery etc. This comment comes from even the sharpest, the smartest and the closest to making good guesses about my behaviour — three separate individuals of course, i’d be very scared if they combined ><
(I can hardly see how this is a likeable trait at all though) But wouldn’t it be boring if people were so predictable, with nothing out of the blue. Maybe some people just have a fascination with things they do not understand and mysteries — much like a scientist and a Rubik’s cube syndrome. I know some people like the thrill of challenge that comes from trying to break a lock, and others the feeling of futility that comes from pushing against a wall.
Hmm! Putting two and two together, I just came up with an entrepreneurial innovation — the Rubik’s Chastity Belt! “A Code you cannot Crack!”
No worries, even I have no idea what goes on in my head. But at the core, all I want is simply — simplicity.
I keep on playin our favorite song
I turn it up while you’re gone
It’s all i got when you’re in my head and you’re in my head so i need it
In My Head – Queens of the Stone Age
“I must assert that in my opinion the exercise of writing is an indispensable part of any genuine effort towards mental efficiency. I don’t care much what you write, so long as you compose sentences and achieve continuity.” – Arnold Bennett (1911).
Findmuck is now more intense and rough than a mere game — games are for kids, this is not.
A passionate pursuit to maintain the potency of my monster within, that of my mind.
A violent struggle against the dysfunction of the “Sodjer Brain”, through continual stimulation of my mental lobes.
With attempted spurts of penetrative insights to keep my brain juices flowing, lest my performance be dulled in future and my peaks short-lived.
In short — YOU CAN TAKE MY BODY, YOU CAN CRUSH MY SPIRITS, YOU CAN WASTE MY TIME, but you cannot touch my mind.
I will remain as Good Steel.
(That being said -don’t get me wrong- I actually really enjoy my life for now….for now. I’m not looking forward to the change to come.)
Life is like an RPG game, I wrote in my philosophy of discipline (Nonsense subject) a few years back. And in many aspects for mine:
- You have a mentor
- You have a barely present mentor.
- You have tasks.
- You have mundane tasks from random people
- You learn things
- You learn mundane things (I recall in Star Ocean 2, there are things like Cooking and Music to be learnt to fulfill certain tasks/master certain Attacks)
- You collect Items to go to a Destination to collect another Item to present to a Character…who then asks you to do collect item to go…
- You collect keys and open a series of doors — with some skill
and STRENGTH USED ON THE DOOR
- There are Non-Playable Characters who are ever present at the same places at the same times doing the same things on a daily routine
- And it feels like a completely different world away from reality.
To think I used to like playing RPGs… I still do actually, and am rather deprived of one. But I sort of lack the patience and time to indulge in a fantasy world these days.
Instead of trying to Level Up character strength-agility etc, I spend my time trying to level up other things in real life (or should I say try to avoid levelling DOWN my mental efficiencies).
Physically, you might say in some sense that I’m trying to level down though…heh.
This is what deBono would call reversal — actually it is the RPG that is modelled after life, not the other way round. Its a bit like saying that strawberry tastes like strawberry shortcake.
One small difference though — I don’t get to fight villains. But who needs fantasy when reality tastes better.
Previously I mentioned a t shirt with “Dulce et decorum est” written in classy Cloister Black font (the deathnote L font) on the front and at the back, written in red Chiller font, THE OLD LIE.
Now I want this: A t shirt with the word “SERVE” bold in front
At the back, “Why do we….“
I’m such a fan of subtlety.
I recently picked up a library book on Lateral Thinking by Edward de Bono because 1) its cover was appealingly damaged 2) I realised that the book was not written by an Irish singer. It dawned upon me that I have actually been using quite a number of methods recommended for ‘creativity’ already, if not the attitude for seeking alternative views. Actually a lot of it stems from being trained in indecent humour on a regular basis! Lateral thinking in chinese might be loosely translated as xiang wai wai.
One of the methods recommended is the use of analogies, which is closely linked to his other technique of Random Stimulation (this I am trying to learn). In his book, he compares gossip spreading to a snowball — which is similar to my bate time “Ever-growing Avalanche” as a substitute phrase for “slippery slope effect”, while meaning a problem that is getting out of hand.
So here I shall present to you an analogy of three women, namely, the Wealthy one, the Easy one and the One you actually want. Almost in story form.
You are not sure which of the three you want — you do know that you don’t want this Fourth one (whom I’m tempted to call the King’s daughter) who happens to be overly popular, and probably near impossible to get. Out of your defiant pride (and lack of self-delusion), you do not even consider this pursuit.
The Wealthy one is seemingly the most appealing on the outsider, or at least to outsiders. Well-dressed and ravishing with an intelligence (or at least a curriculum vitae) which could humble your teachers, the wealthy one is very reputable and respectable among the three. You sit and think about the riches that may await you and the trophy-like sense of pride as you tell all your friends in future. The downside is that she is awfully sought after as well as probably demanding in future.
Of course, this is your parent’s ideal choice — for they want bragging privileges as well. It’s only human. As that old poem goes:
“Mother, come mother, come riddle to me,
Come riddle it all in one,
And tell me whether to marry Fair Ellen
Or bring the Brown girl home.”
“The Brown girl she has house and land,
Fair Ellender she has none,
And there I charge you with the blessing
To bring the Brown girl home.“
The Easy one, as suggestive as it sounds, is easier to get and easier to maintain. Poor as a Non-shopping-centre-Church mouse, but lacks all of the Wealthy one’s downsides. Ah, its paradise for the lazy person who waits at the tree hoping for a rabbit. Who cares if everything else is mediocre? That’s the downside though…and your parents don’t like her very much.
And the One you really want seems to strike the nice balance between the two, perhaps some of it is even just plain gut-feel more than anything. Of course there’s some downside, but you’re not exactly Rational for now.
Life however is dictated that by a few simple rules:
1. The rule of life dictates that you can only pick One… although you still have to show some level of special interest in each of them for now!
2. The rule of life also dictates that not everything will go as you please. There is the chance where they all say No. You are then Left by yourself to be Independent (HAHAHAHA. That’s just awful!)
3. The rule of life further dictates that all judgments may be based on Temporary Illusions. Things may change in future and you simply are not making an informed decision. It’s information asymmetry! Many look back thinking, “what was I thinking then?“, “I must have been thinking with my codpiece and not my headpiece” or “how much she’s Morphed” — sparking off a very common Midlife crisis when going to work and staying at home are both equally dreary.
And while undecided, you realise that actually any of them will be fine for each a different reason.
Because ultimately, it is -as my parents tell me, both with different meanings- not what you have been given, but how you use it.
The human decision making process is inherently flawed. But expectedly so, mainly because human beings are not omniscient. We make decisions about the distant future based on a perception of present circumstances, with no idea about what might change.
Earlier this year I made a small wish list (in place of a new year resolution, since i didnt believe in making To Do lists, i made a To Get list instead). They were obviously not material possessions…
But of the four things there (before i quickly scrunched up the paper to avoid it being seen), i achieved one. And the other three — are starting to flounder in value. I never expected it.
As I always say, everything is temporal — your wants included. Which leads you to question: How do you know what is it that you want even now? How do you tell which wants are more temporal than others?
You realise that not only is everything temporal, but everything starts to be seemingly meaningless as well. Vanity, vanity, all is vanity — as the wise man wrote. Meaningless since if you could make do without it under some circumstances, you could be satisfied without it in other circumstances as well.
wished a week would pass faster; there are many things to tell you and some i need to ask you for your help soon — in person.
So i wake up at a timing which i go to school (at around 6)
I put on my school pants, which are so damn comfy and have served me for three years — i never do put on weight, do i?
and my school shoes for the past two years that lasted me even during boston where the sole came loose a bit.
And in my pants are my usual items of wallet, phone, clorets and Zen.
I spend the time before the day starts lazing on a bench. A key difference to note is that i dont actually have assembly which is a COMPLETE UTTER WASTE OF TIME IN A WARM PLACE.
I still get chocolate vitasoy
I spend the day in an aircon room, sitting around, doing nothing much
I spend a lot of time stoning, thinking about what a waste of time it is and looking forward to the end of the day
where i can go play with my ho where i can go home.
I get home at around evening time, in time for dinner like a normal school day.
Okay maybe not the last bit, many a times i got home only when it was dark — either for work or for play.
There are many bits of last year and the year before that I miss, and it comes back in nice flashes. I miss mainly the sitting around doing nothing actually (in addition to the skipping of many things) — unfortunately this time I have no one to keep me company during the day and after the day. I occasionally get this lonely bouts where I feel a compulsion to SMS but realise that people are slave to wage, slave to Ahem, or worse yet, simply overseas.
So you can take the ACS out of the boy but you cant take the boy out of.. ugh.
Human behaviour never seems to be consistent. There are always exceptions and irregularities in human Character, in other words, we cannot generalise behaviour in the way of a Flat literature character. (All too common in literature. Scoff)
The seemingly cold person can be warm to a special few. The miser can occasionally show signs of generosity and exuberance. The Idler might bother with a lot of work and trouble some times.
And it is surprising that in Jerome K. Jerome’s book “Idle Thoughts of An Idle Fellow”, he has a chapter “On Getting On In The World” in which he criticises the lack of ambition, which contrasts his first chapter “On Being Idle”:
It may be true that “a contented mind is happy anywhere,” but so is a Jerusalem pony, and the consequence is that both are put anywhere and are treated anyhow. “Oh, you need not bother about him,” is what is said; “he is very contented as he is, and it would be a pity to disturb him.” And so your contented party is passed over and the discontented man gets his place.
If you are foolish enough to be contented, don’t show it, but grumble with the rest; and if you can do with a little, ask for a great deal. Because if you don’t you won’t get any. In this world it is necessary to adopt the principle pursued by the plaintiff in an action for damages, and to demand ten times more than you are ready to accept. If you can feel satisfied with a hundred, begin by insisting on a thousand; if you start by suggesting a hundred you will only get ten.
It was by not following this simple plan that poor Jean Jacques Rousseau came to such grief. He fixed the summit of his earthly bliss at living in an orchard with an amiable woman and a cow, and he never attained even that. He did get as far as the orchard, but the woman was not amiable, and she brought her mother with her, and there was no cow. Now, if he had made up his mind for a large country estate, a houseful of angels, and a cattle-show, he might have lived to possess his kitchen garden and one head of live-stock, and even possibly have come across that rara-avis–a really amiable woman.
It’s like the typical aim to jump further than you can for Standing Broad Jump. (hahahaha, and i recall that i could jump 2.5m – which is more than my sportsman neighbour heh- before mangling my leg. sigh)
Ah Jerome K Jerome writes amusingly — feeling like philosophical reflections of life in a biography that is written in a literary style.
And ironically, it is precisely due to my slight lack of contentment (an anomaly for my easily satisfied character) and my desire for more, some may say its the pursuit of excellence, that will cause me slight troubles to fuss about.
Oh, on a completely unrelated note, the same chapter makes this amusing point:
I am sure the wooing of Fortune would prove quite as interesting a tale as the wooing of any flesh-and-blood maiden, though, by the way, it would read extremely similar; for Fortune is, indeed, as the ancients painted her, very like a woman–not quite so unreasonable and inconsistent, but nearly so–and the pursuit is much the same in one case as in the other. Ben Jonson’s couplet–
“Court a mistress, she denies you;
Let her alone, she will court you”–
puts them both in a nutshell. A woman never thoroughly cares for her lover until he has ceased to care for her; and it is not until you have snapped your fingers in Fortune’s face and turned on your heel that she begins to smile upon you.
Heh, things that I will never have to experience/learn about — not through the hard way at least.
What it means to snap your fingers in fortune’s face and turn on your heel — I have no idea.
I’m fully aware that productivity is supposed to refer to, in analogous terms, the student who sleeps in class, skips a lot of class, spends the pre-exam period spending time with people and still does well in the exams. (The alternative view would term this as “Undeserving”.) The politically favourable way would be to call this the success of “Teach Less, Learn More”, which we don’t hear of anymore these days. Teach less, learn more does sound like the embodiment of productivity though.
Of course, it will be politically incorrect to compare a productivity drive to a student who works less but produces more.
And it almost sounds as if the so-called “productivity” called for in this “marathon without a finish line” is really….
Earn Less, Work More.
In principle, it is probably untrue (Creative means and technological/skills upgrading!) and just a funny thought. In reality, somethings are easier to resort to than others — and will probably be the case.
Eh, wait — isn’t that the opposite of productivity….
(It’s the good student who takes notes in class, mugs her balls out and ends up only mediocre. Pardon the unintended sexist reference)
I think I’m going Crazy.
(and I don’t mean it as a Metaphor)
Today I did all sorts of mundane tasks from the strenously laborious to the unglamourously dirty to the mechanical paperwork — which is honestly no surprise.
The surprising part is — I actually took pride and found happiness in doing it and doing it efficiently, in marked contrast to the previous post as well as my entire character/philosophy that praises the mind, idleness and freedom of time.
Its as though a subtle external influence rubbed off on me.
I then go home slightly tired but very satisfied (I used to call this a Consolation Prize), getting to relax in my bed reading mindless things instead of my usual routine of reading the news online (where else to find reliable news!). Of course some things don’t change, like having tea.
Even personality is something seemingly temporal and never certain.
For now at least. I think its a good thing though (since either way I have to go through this time)! Might even make me more employable.
Some lessons from basic Soviet history:
When completing work is rewarded with more work instead of free time or any form of monetary compensation, incentives are not just missing — they’re distorted. The incentive is not then to be efficient, but to be inefficient and drag out the task for as long as possible. Not only is it permissible to relax and work idly, it is more beneficial to do less in more time! This is especially when there is no end-point in mind or no greater purpose.
The exception is if your worker is
a moron that is susceptible propoganda easily persuaded by the use of strong rhetoric and appealing to his sense of pride to make sacrifices in the name of MOTHER RUSSIA.
It’s the very backward and decadent communist incentive system… Yet still strangely present in a post-communist world — almost as if there are remnants of dead leaves that are yet to have been swept away.
It makes you wonder if some things are any more relevant than the communist ideology in the present day -_-
don’t get me wrong. I’m no idler — typically, i can do more in less time
as long as it is purposeful, meaningful and beneficial.
Each time there is a change of location, I become separated from the people I became closest to in the previous location. In total I have changed roughly four times by now, and at each barrier the people I actually talk to and like being in the company of get less and less and less. The people whom I really really want to see but don’t get to even hear.
All that’s left…. is the inner sanctuary of my soul, the limitless imagination of my mind
and a box of clorets.
Lord Keynes (the Curve guy) actually said this before in 1930:
For at least another hundred years, we must pretend to ourselves and to every one that fair is foul and foul is fair; for foul is useful and fair is not. Avarice and usury and precaution must be our gods for a little longer still. For only they can lead us out of economic necessity into daylight.
And in E.F Schumacher’s book, “Small is beautiful” (slightly philosophical and environmentalist on top of the economics. I’m reading it because of the philosophical aspect but DESPITE the environmentalist aspect — a rare find), he refutes this quite well.
What is enough? Who can tell us ? Certainly not the economist who pursues “economic growth” as the highest of all values, and therefore has no concept of ‘enough. There are poor societies that have too little; but where is the rich society that says ‘Halt! We have enough’? There is none.
And how is this relevant to us? When increasing productivity is compared to a “marathon with no finish line”, how long do the “short term growth at all costs” stretch till? This i realised while writing an essay on success, putting forth the politically correct view that success is about continual growth lest it led to stagnation — when in reality I believe that success is a state of satisfaction.
I thought this phrase should have been used by The Other Side instead.
For foul is useful and fair is not — seems to be a very striking pragmatic line.
Occasionally, to catch people who hide a knife behind their smile, I intentionally drop several obvious Openings that are not to my advantage, or would apparently screw me over — just to see if they will make use of it and turn it against me. The openings are so obvious and so several, that one who is ill intentioned cannot help but to take the opportunity to steal a goat. It’s essentially hitting the grass to scare out the snake.
Of course, because I am cautious, even if they were to, it would have no effect…. They don’t know that of course.
It’s a bit like Jesus testing Satan in the wilderness. I’m inclined to believe that it is this way and not the other way round (ahem invulnerability ahem) — turns out that Satan failed.
Unfortunately I lack the same invulnerability. (heh, i like my bad chinese translations)
While digging up my MO memo/MO ammo, I read through my reports slowly and it is only NOW that i realise that the shit sounds quite bad.
And worse still — upon some time, i realise that on one of the slips of paper. The doctor wrote the wrong knee. FML.
It baffles me — how was such a mistake made!!
I’m no better — it took me two years to notice this mistake, thinking that the slip always wrote abt the right knee.
As the saying goes about earrings (and i cheekily said this in front of an interview panel before): “left is right and right is wrong”