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    • Forest and Trees (Last post by Alexandre Orion)
    • There is a book that you may enjoy -- the author is a delightful little old lady from Newcastle (who has a biting wit !), Mary Midgley. The book is called "Are You an Illusion ?" :cheer: It is a fascinating bit of writing ...
    • The Whole? (Last post by Senan)
    • Perhaps as a timely example, we can use the current social upheaval about the Confederate Flag? A "parts oriented" thought process might approach this issue from just a certain perspective. A historian might say that there is value in preserving the past by preserving the flag. The African American community may view it as a symbol of slavery and oppression that should be destroyed. KKK members and supporters may consider it a symbol of past white supremacy and the desire to bring it back. The ancestors of a Confederate General may consider the flag a source of pride in that their ancestor was a war hero despite being on the losing side. Even others may connect the confederate flag with the "general Lee" car from the Dukes of Hazzard television show or NASCAR. These are trees in a forest. The varying opinions about the confederate flag are all driven from a certain perspective. Southerners may agree with Northerners, Democrats may agree with Republicans, but it will still be to varying degrees, even in agreement. Trees will always be individuals, even in a forest of trees just like them. To take a whole-istic view of the issue would be to consider the merits of having the confederate flag fly over a state capitol building from as many of these perspectives as possible. One should seek to understand why this symbol holds the power it does for each person or group, and then try to determine an appropriate action based on the cost/benefit to the whole population. One should not simply look at it from one's own limited perspective, say a White Conservative Southern Christian or a Black Liberal Southern Christian. Perhaps both would benefit from applying Buddhist philosophy to the issue? One should strive to explore an issue from many directions, utilizing many philosophies, particularly ones that do not mesh well with the philosophies one is comfortable with. To me, it is more like studying each tree individually in order to better understand how they all make up the forest together. Then you can try to determine if an individual tree is benefiting the forest, or harming it. To see the Confederate Flag forest as a whole is to look beyond the opinion and rhetoric of the loudest voices in media and explore for yourself why this is an issue to so many in the first place. That's the best example I can muster right now, so feel free to shoot holes in my logic and understanding of your question.
    • Elliot Hulse on your Legacy (Last post by Khaos)
    • Elliot Hulse is a huge source of inspiration for me. Not just his talks, but watching his videos of training are better than a pre-workout supplement.
    • Shadow Jedi? (Last post by Williamkaede)
    • Maybe AMD is confusing Shadow with Grey? Shadows are an Aspect at the Force Academy, but aren't strictly Jedi. They tend to be very esoteric, experimental and have a solid psychological portion to their training. Jedi Shadows were a prestige class for the Jedi Consular in The Old Republic MMORPG. Quote: "A Jedi will always seek the truth... I will expose the dark side's deceit." A Shadow serves the Jedi Order by being a silent observer and, when action is necessary, a subtle hand. To avoid rash decisions on the part of the Council, Shadows go unseen, gathering information and quietly thwarting those who seek to threaten the Jedi Order. Employing Force techniques that cloud enemy minds, Shadows slip into hostile territory, and when necessary, they strike enemies down with deadly efficiency.
    • EVE Online? (Last post by Akkarin)
    • Quote: Flying the chimera was actually fun, I was able to use it for a few l5's briefly before there was just always people watching the area to gank it A friend in an old corp (who once just gave me 1 bil ISK :ohmy:) used to run L5s, he used to run 7 accounts with salvagers and scouts everywhere lol, he made silly money each week... Quote: The wyvern supercarrier, I put in 21bil isk into that thing. lol I wish I had that amount of money :P Quote: I had a suicide group come after my golem once, but I was omni-tanked and they didn't expect that at all, I actually managed to kill the tackler(cause they only had 1 there for some reason), but for the most part they left me alone. I try and keep my l4 ships around a bil or less for that reason, I also only hang out in mission hubs that have about 50 pilots in them on a good day. Well you see I think they target mission hubs, because they know they can be sure of lots of people being there (which sucks), but if I was ever to do it again I would probably fit a Golem because the EHP is so much higher than an active shield fit Tengu. Quote: I think they just changed all that crafting and factory stuff again too. I haven't looked at all the recent changes yet. Yup, they released an update for it 1/2 patches ago, that's when I decided to give it ago so I never experienced the old system but the new one is really easy and straightforward to use so I am greatly enjoying it! Quote: Again if there was a group here that wanted to do hi sec op's for awhile I may re-sub both my toons, at the very least I can plant my perfect buff orca outside a station in a system and buff the corp on one of my monitors while I'm programming all day, maybe do some mining too(which is what I was doing last time). I have the tech 2 cargo expander rigs on it so I can do the full 191k m3 of storage, and I think with buffs my main mining with his near perfect setup I was filling it up in about 1.5hrs at the slowest of ore. Sometimes 50-60minutes if I was on top of the mining and had some big roids where I wasn't constantly switching targets(a pain in the butt with strip miner 2's) Well I'm always up for whatever lol, but Incursions running would probably be a good pursuit to do, except my igh-sec alliance is currently in a war :P Yeah whenever I mine it's because I'm doing something else at the same time lol, for myself it's normally writing essays or reading or something, because you only have to pay attention once every few minutes lol. That being said my skills aren't amazing so I do it much slower than yourself!
    • Journals? (Last post by Hyrum Tigerprice)
    • Thank you so much both Adder and Jestor. Not long after posting the topic/question I found a few answers for myself, so sorry to bother you both. I hope that I didn't waste too much of you time. Thanks for the links though etc... as it gives me a bit of format to address those things and keep going. I really do appreciate your help. In fact most people I have encountered in this little pocket of cyberspace have been very helpful. been a pretty busy week so and moving forward with a few things though I get more opposition out there in the real world than I do online or in an online community like this. One thing I always goes by is Bricktop in Snatch - "Never underestimate the predictability of stupidity." He hit the bull's eye when he said that :whistle:
    • US Police set to Kill 1100 People in 2015 (Last post by Akkarin)
    • For a comparison if this held true between 2003 and 2014 then perhaps over 10,000 people were killed by the police. In comparison in the same time 4,491 US service members were killed in Iraq.
    • Is all altruism selfish? (Last post by Akkarin)
    • There's a chapter on this idea in one of the ethics books for my philosophy class: The Fundamentals of Ethics by Russ Shafer Landau. TL;DR? Altruism exists, or the arguments against it are certainly not strong enough to disprove of its existence. Think about the question like this: "I make the claim that no action can be selfless, every action is inherently going to be selfish." This is Psychological Egoism, the idea that what motivates us is our own self-interest, if it is true then altruism (the direct desire to benefit others for their own sake with no ulterior motive) does not exist. It is easy to think Psychological Egoism is the case, though if it is then such civilian acts of heroism as these: must therefore not be altruistic and must therefore have an ulterior motive? That seems an odd assertion, does someone who jumps on top of a grenade to save their fellows (such as Ross McGinnis who on December 4th 2007 sacrificed himself to save his squad mates on patrol in Iraq) do this with an ulterior motive? Here are some of the arguments an egoist might use: The Argument from Our Strongest Desires 1. Whenever you do something, you are motivated by your strongest desire. 2. Whenever you are motivated by your strongest desire, you are pursuing your self interest. 3. Therefore, whenever you do something, you are pursuing your self-interest. Let's leave aside premise one, because even if it is true premise two begs the question i.e it presumes the truth of its conclusion. It cannot appeal to fans and opponents of psychological egoism, because if you are a fan then it is inherently right, but if you're an opponent then it is inherently wrong... It is not a neutral statement. Further just because one has a desire does not define what the desire is for. One might have a desire, but it might be for someone else, the well-being of a friend maybe, and just because one might derive pleasure from providing such a service to someone else does not mean the pleasure being derived was the object of the desire rather just a consequence of it. The Argument from Expected Benefit 1. Whenever you do something, you expect to be better off as a result. 2. If you expect to be better off as a result of your actions, then you are aiming to promote your self-interest. 3. Therefore, whenever you do something, you are aiming to promote your self-interest. Premise one may or may not be true (helping someone who fell down even if it means you're late for an important meeting?), but moving on premise two is highly implausible. This is because it seems to be begging the question again, volunteering at homeless shelters might gain something from the activity, but this does not mean they are acting from self-interest. It is true we can never be sure of our motives however, but this does not mean the egoist must be correct. It seems there are counterexamples. The best way to support the premise is with: "(G) Whenever you expect your action to result in X, then your aim is to get X" except this is false, a lecturer might have several people fall asleep in class but this does not mean that is their aim. The Argument from Avoiding Misery 1. If we would never do an action that promised only personal misery, then all of our actions are done in an effort to avoid such misery. 2. We would never do an action that promised only personal misery. 3. Therefore, all of our actions are done in an effort to avoid personal misery - and that is a self-interested motivation. With premise two, consider a prisoner of conscience who allows themselves to be tortured. Each sacrifice might result in benefits, but this doesn't show egoism to be true. This is because premise one, which is support by the principle "(P) If I would never do an action that promised me only X, then I am always trying to avoid X." is suspect. Even if we wouldn't do an action if it promised only misery, it doesn't follow that our motivations are always to avoid such misery. If one would never do an action to avoid certain death it doesn't mean that all actions done all the time are done in order to escape certain death. The Guilty Conscience Maybe someone does something "altruistic" because they have a guilty conscience? Well if someone were truly good then of course they will be troubled at the thought of doing wrong or doing nothing in the face of wrong. This does not prove their actions are motivated by a desire for a guilt-free conscience. Indeed if one cared not for others then one would never feel guilty about doing nothing... Expanding the Realm of Self-Interest Maybe one's well-being depends upon the well-being of others, so to help them is to really help oneself? Except if one's well-being improves after helping another this does not prove that the object of the help was in order to receive this personal gain in well-being. Further this support the idea of altruism not egoism, because if one didn't care about others then they would not suffer when thinking of the misery of others. Letting the Evidence Decide Either we let the evidence decide or we don't. If we don't let the evidence decide then egoism is hardly a rational conviction. If we do let the evidence decide then altruism must be true, because people report that the primary motivation of them helping others is out of altruism and not personal gain. Maybe the reports are deceived, either the reporter is lying or they are suffering from self-deception. The evidence we rely on can be either testimony or behaviour, we can be told what motivates someone and we can see the behaviour they exhibit. But of course we can misinterpret behaviour and people can lie. But the problem for the egoist is they both point to altruism, and if we were to discredit all testimony or reinterpret all evidence of such behaviour then this is hardly an unbiased or rational approach.
    • Why does the application ask about offenses over $... (Last post by Gisteron)
    • Speaking as one of the harsher visiting douchebags of this here fine establishment, I shall say this: Seeing as an answer like yours to this question will have negligible to no effect on your actual time here, maybe there is a discussion to be had whether it should be asked then. Besides, on the one hand the question explicitly cautions against being answered vaguely. Yet it justifies itself through something as vague as the "protection of you and the membership [emphasis added]", where the membership could be referring to your own, or to that of other members or to the set of other members, and I have no idea what protection means in this context at all either. And now that we have been to a little exercise on the virtues of irony and self-awareness, what came to bother me, and this was not a question back when I applied in 2011, is the question for one of four phone numbers. Why TOTJO would need that sort of data is frankly beyond me and "for our records" doesn't quite make it make any more sense. Transparency, ladies and gentlemen, is the only way to gain a newcomers trust or to keep a long-time user's. Now lest I be accused of seeing but one side of this, after taking it out on TOTJO, let's turn to you, dear newcomer. You implied that TOTJO has no right to ask questions of the sort you are complaining about. That is false. Everybody has every right to ask any question they please. That being said, nobody, including TOTJO, is entitled to an answer. You are perfectly free to ask the administration why they need that information and if their answer is unsatisfying, refuse to provide it. If you are lucky you will be able to negotiate a membership without that and chances are, the form will be changed for future applicants based on that precedent case. Otherwise you will be refused membership, not so much because of the answer, but because you wouldn't provide one. Of course, you can skip all of that by simply not applying, if you feel like they are asking too much for memberships here, as do I. In the very next sentence you go on to claim that somebody asks that to pass judgement on you. Not only do you not know that, you have little to no evidence to even assume it, past experience with other organizations notwithstanding. You also tried to appeal to the emotions of the administration by trying to insult them and potentially other members. That is not what we call fine behaviour; however, rest assured, that only the substance of your posts will be adressed and not any angry outbursts or feeble attempts to push someone's buttons, which ever it is. It will be noticed, however. In the next paragraph you go on to assume that somebody is going to refuse your membership based on how you respond to that question. Well most people here tend to not waste their time with this much bureaucracy. If criminal offenses as low as 300USD are a problem enough to refuse membership, I think there would be an automated script where you hit the button for having such a record and it would kindly inform you that a membership is impossible. The very fact there is an application form that is manually processed already tells you that all this information is for records only and would seldom jeopardize anyone's potential for membership. You then go on being outraged at how anyone asks you to lie for membership eventhough the form very specifically states that you must enter truthful data. Seeing as you must have read the application form at least thus far, including the preceding text, it stands to reason that you know full well how nobody is asking you to lie and therefore are lying in this very post. Way to dig one's very own grave! Now, in the next paragraph you both ask and answer another question, namely what makes the leading bodies of TOTJO qualified to decide who is worthy of joining their club. Well, frankly, anyone sincere and honest and serene enough to answer one of a dozen simple questions without insulting anyone would, technically be enough, I presume. Seeing also how TOTJO in particular is indeed a club, its members and leaders are very much qualified to decide who they let in and who they don't and while you are free to question their standards, it is not your place to dictate any to them at this point. Besides, TOTJO is not the only Jediist community. There are others, active to varying degrees, with both higher and lower standards than these, and being a Jedi does not strictly require you to join any of them. You can be a self-appointed Jedi master if you want, and nobody will judge you for it, just as nobody judges self-appointed Hindu gurus or self-appointed Baptist ministers, if I may jump ahead into the post you did after that. TOTJO is not defining what a Jedi is, it is defining what a TOTJO member is, a TOTJO Knight, a TOTJO Master. As far as I know, most other sites wouldn't give a damn about anybody's rank here until they met their standards and likewise, wherever else you might be an order's Grand Master, you start as a humble novice on TOTJO. If you feel that this place is offensive to your particular sensibilities, that's too bad, and you are welcome to either deal with it or walk through our ever open door again; nobody here is responsible for what you are telling yourself, especially not when what we are saying is the opposite of that.
    • What are you reading right now? (Last post by hellisforhorses)
    • Quote: @Arcade: "Kadavermarch" (March of the cadavers) was one of the defining books for me growing up :) Currently I'm reading Hunter Thompson's "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" which is by far one of the weirdest and most brilliant books I've ever read. Just got a fresh copy after the last one literally fell apart. Next up on the list is "Last Exit to Brooklyn" by Hubert Selby Jr. That book is pretty trippy, but super-awesome at the same time! :)
    • How massive is a supermassive blackhole? (Last post by Adder)
    • How massive!? Depends how close you are :lol: I read a few days ago a NASA simulation of the destruction of dark matter produced what looks like a black hole. Here is a pic, the brighter colors are Gamma rays rushing towards the camera/POV as they interact close to the event horizon. Perhaps all the 'dark matter' is within black holes, or not... [attachment] Gamma-Ray Signal Produced in the Computer Simulation by Annihilations of Dark Matter Particles NASA/GODDARD SPACE FLIGHT CENTER

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