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    • A Question about Love (Last post by Alexandre Orion)
    • Quote: “There are some people who would never have fallen in love if they had not heard there was such a thing.” ~ François de La Rochefoucauld, Maxims It is a recurrent topic, but maybe not as recurrent as it needs to be, the question of just how separate love and sex actually are. There is a megaton or twenty of shame inducing thoughts, armed and ready for detonation in our psyches when this becomes an issue for us. It is one of those areas of life that everyone knows something about and nothing about at the same time thus, it becomes a tabou subject and lumped into the hamper of "mental illness" with all the other stuff we have made anti-social. Ever been the only "single" person at a dinner party ? Sometimes one begins to feel like that obnoxious person who farts in the lift or who lights up a cigarette in the cinema ... As usual, we take the easy way into it : stipulating how love is a separate phenomenon from sex, how there are many kinds of sexless relationships which are quite rewarding &c. &c. ... And, by and large that is true. But that is skirting the subject a bit by trying to Reason it out this way. In fact, it is quite like trying to Reason with a brain-tumour, saying "Don't you see how destructive this is ? Please, stop ..." There isn't a lot known right now about why one falls in love with a particular person. There are some indices (kindness & charisma, age, income/educational level) that float pretty conveniently on the surface, but there are untold fathoms of psycho-affective currents underneath what we can readily see in social interactions. Sexuality and (true) gender ambivalences lurk - and feed - down there. We really do not have as much choice about whom we fall in love with as our liberated, atheistic, self-driven illusions about our social organisation lead us to believe. One can walk into a room full of charming people in our age-group and economic/educational class and we do not fall in love with all of them. Quite commonly, we fall in love with none of them -- although there are generally one or two we wouldn't mind having a shag with ... As this is the case, it is very probable that, when one does meet someone who takes on a 'special' significance, it may very well turn out to be someone who is not of a corresponding sexuality or just, for whatever incongruity in the situation, not available. There is no cause for guilt or shame in this (except, of course, if one or the other is cruel about it -- if the one "in love" resorts to ruse or pressure to obtain 'favours' from the other, or if the one who is not interested puts down insultingly the one who is enamoured) ; as it were, it is noble to love from afar, not expecting anything in return even if the hope, the dream, the longing may remain to various degrees. There is as much separation between loving and being loved as we're trying to put between love and sex : we never get them entirely "separate," but just far apart enough that we can get on with our lives. What has struck me as funny sometimes over the time that I've read about (social psychology, sociology and anthropology -- NOT "Cosmopolitan" or "The Sun" columnists) is just how embittered one can be about someone one doesn't want feeling love and hope of its eventual reciprocation. Although probably most of the burden of unrequited love does fall on the one who is in love, there is a certain degree (sometimes intense) of awkwardness and humiliation for the person who does not share the feelings. On both sides, sympathy and understanding are warranted. No one deserves being put down or told to "come to their senses." This too is a very old dilemma : Quote: "We are nearer loving those who hate us, than those who love us more than we desire.” ― François de La Rochefoucauld, Maxims For as much as we bang on about how nonreciprocal love is difficult and damaging, maybe we ought to dig it out of the hamper and smell it to see if it isn't a little more wear-able than one might ordinarily think -- despite the stains. It is, after all, pretty durable. The most fragile sort of love is when two people decide to have a go at making one another fit all the needs of one another ; disillusionment ensues when realising that the other is just another human being. Then, without some right properly practised perspective-taking, it becomes the partner's fault that s/he is only human and quite incapable of dissolving a life-time of existential angst. And quite commonly, they are both doing it to one another at the same time. Then they break up, just to go meet someone else 'normal' and 'wonderful' (and who they don't know as well) to get the whole mess going again. On the other tentacle however, what makes a more one-sided love resistant is that it doesn't have a disappointment aspect like actually trying to live with someone else does. There is that hope that "everything would be alright, if only..." that can be quite sustaining. Whereas that hope can be a positive motivator (even if that hope is never realised), a reciprocated relationship that cannot be sustained (as in, one of the two potential partners isn't of the right sexuality), that motivational hope gets crushed under the pressure of a disappointing break-up. Sex can be a quite separate behaviour from love, but it is not very convincing when talking about close, loving relationships, that love can be separated from sex. The love may not necessarily die without it, but the relationship might. Sex - of the "love-making" variety - is the ultimate of acceptance. Not the "my beloved can do no wrong" sort of acceptance, but the acceptation of being, for a time, of one body, of one flesh (to use a very old metaphor). When two people feel that close to one another, a sexual consommation is the equivalent of sharing for a brief time the most socially un-acceptable part of ourselves - our bodies - with one another in the most open and genuine way. And that is why that hope remains and why we perhaps ought not discourage it. Now, I must emphasise again that I'm talking about "love-making" sex, and not the mutually pleasing, satisfaction seeking, "let's get each other off" type of sex. That latter type is nice, and it indeed does have its place in healthy living (and can, actually be the sort that people who really do love one another have most of the time too) and it is nice if one has a friend or two who offer it now and then, but all things considered, one can buy that sort of sex. If this sort of sex is what the hope that one is harbouring entails, confused with 'loving' the intended, then we ought to very honestly suggest alternatives. We're not going to solve this here. Actually, we'll never solve it until we just don't love anyone any more. I'm not sure that it would be a solution if we all just loved everyone ~ that could risk getting us into bigger tangles. But, I, for one, do not wish to see the day where no one loves anyone, or if one is in love with someone who doesn't return that love, 'no worries, there's a pill that can cure it.' I've been on both sides of this particular quandary and know how how uncomfortable it can be for both persons. What I'll like to offer in the place of a conclusion is merely to persevere. Feel what you feel, for whom you feel it ; hope what you have to hope (even if the probability is small : there is no such thing as "false hope"), be honest, use no ruse, trickery nor subterfuge for "getting what you want" (that is the cruelty I was talking about above), and be compassionate and patient with everyone involved. Realise that the person who doesn't love you back is not being "mean" - this isn't a moral issue - and that it is a difficult situation for her/him also. I hope that helps a little ... ;)
    • Monthly Council Reports Transparency (Last post by Snowy Aftermath)
    • Quote: Quote: While it's nice to actually get something out of the Council, the reports don't tell you what is being discussed that hasn't been decided on. The Council could be discussing extending apprenticeships to a minimum of 2 years and we'd never know unless they told us or had already made the decision. I know this won't satisfy everyone, but bear in mind that nowadays the vast majority (as far as I'm aware?) of conversations of this nature are put to the Knights for debate - the Knights now being quite a sizeable pool of members. It's quite some time since I've seen the Council implement something (beyond administrative matters) that the Knights weren't already aware of. So, whether or not we think that the Knights ought to be the sole beneficiaries of this privilege, it would not be true to say that no-one knows what the Council are discussing or that they are keeping secrets amongst themselves. :) That's not a solution, but it actually does help to know that there is a larger group participating. Thanks.
    • What do you hope for? (Last post by JamesSand)
    • That my caesar sauce has the right amount of tang to it. Oh, err, to be serene and calm even if it doesn't? To be the master of my domain?
    • How to Find Out If Your Penis Is a Normal Size (Last post by JamesSand)
    • Quote: I wonder if there is some sort of correlation between what you posted regarding "don't look weak" and the affinity between men and the "jedi persona": cool, calm, collected, invulnerable. I'm just buying into the stereotype here, but it's worth it - That explains casting Hayden Christiansen as someone who "falls" from the Jedi ideal B) Anyway, that thought reminds me of the following (either by Gaiman or Pratchett, not sure which of the two actually "penned" it) Quote: Most books on witchcraft will tell you that witches work naked. This is because most books on witchcraft were written by men.
    • Why Not... (Last post by Manu)
    • There are many "flavors" of Christianity as far as I can tell. Anyone who wants to live his/her life similar to what we know about Jesus is A-OK in my book. :) But many Christians I know still uphold the idea that their religion is the only right one and everyone else is wrong, and I'd rather not get associated with that.
    • Love vs Attachment (Last post by JamesSand)
    • Quote: being cynical is not the same as being wise Fake it 'til you make it They're also not mutually exclusive. I am cynical in many ways, Perhaps it is genetic, or perhaps it's something I developed from experience. As per the OP Quote: subscribe to the idea of minimizing attachment to free the self from unnecessary physical and emotional burdens. - That applies to me, but that's something I've come too after many emotional attachments (people and things) have in the long run been a burden. Your mileage may vary, and I don't think you can read a book, or "buy" someone else's wisdom on the subject. If someone asks for mine, I give it (and occasionally people find value or comfort in it), but I am not prepared to label it as the solution to life the universe and everything.
    • Have you killed a human ?? (Last post by MadHatter)
    • Ok so I have never killed someone. However I will tell you the story of coming close twice. Thankfully both times the presentation of the firearm along with the sound of a pump chambering a round or in the second case the safety coming off were enough to make the person/s run. The first time it was around 0700 and I was woken by my brother yelling that someone was in the house and that they had a knife. I fought with my locked gun case and then the locked ammo case because I was a responsible owner and locked all those up in different cases. Well let me tell you I have never known panic like that before. Then I grabbed three rounds for my shotgun and loaded them. Chambering a round I screamed for my brother to get down and keep in his room. That is when he yelled that the person was running. I never even got to see the man other then the flash of clothing and sneakers as they whipped out the door. Thankfully the police got him before he got to far. The second time was much worse. I ended up distracted on the bus and went one stop too far into an area near my house where you did not go after dark if you didnt live there. Well that block and a half was all it took. Trying to get home I suddenly hear snuff that white boy. I turn to see four people starting to run down the street and one of them had something metallic and long in his hand. I drew my pistol and snapped the safety off yelling to stay back. They thankfully turned around and ran. Now what did those experiences teach me/ feel like? 1. a locked up and unloaded gun is useless when you need it. 2. Even thinking about having to take a life made me sick to my stomach afterwards. I almost threw up, was shaky, and then very very mad. But in the moment there was a clam at my center that I have felt at no other time. So any other questions? I hope that those are the only experiences I have like that because I dont want to think about having to take a life for real. I came close enough to know that I would have if need be but I also know that it would be worse then any of the abuse I have suffered in my life time. Because even if you want to live taking a life takes something out of you, or at least that is what I feel it would have done to me.
    • Waging Peace (Last post by Adder)
    • With International Peace Day coming up on Sept 21, it could be a good time to consider 'how to make peace'!? She talks about 'negative peace' being a condition of peace, perhaps a type of effort, defined by the absence of conflict. So then 'positive peace' effort gets divided into 8 distinct work areas, the 'Pillars of Peace'; [image] Seems pretty normal to us in the West, but perhaps they are actually quite vital!! I guess the theory is the Pillars of Peace reduce the chance of conflict developing, and while negative peace is the main metric of peace, its probably not the most useful focus to create and maintain peace. Sure the ability to control (read; stop) conflict is vital for restoring the condition of peace when violence starts, but perhaps there is more to peacekeeping then the promise of a strong armed response. I"m sure no-one wants to live in a Police or nanny state, but I've always considered Jedi to be peacekeepers... at least in belief if not conduct. For more discussion, here is a conference playlist titled the Future of Peace from earlier this year; www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzyGLFG67...BsjC28h9t95SiFyX0hke economicsandpeace.org/ www.visionofhumanity.org/ www.peacecorps.gov/ internationaldayofpeace.org/
    • Potential : Dr. Jordan B. Peterson (Last post by Adder)
    • Quote: On to the consciousness thing. I for one do not know that he is referring to the hard problem of consciousness when he says that we - and I quote "can't account for it at all" (emphasis present in original tone). To me, this sounds a lot like he is saying that we have no account at all for consciousness and the article you link to says otherwise. Speaking of that article, I'm not positive that "Why is it conscious?" is a question "we can still meaningfully ask" "even after we have explained the functional, dynamical, and structural properties of the conscious mind". It is not self-evident to me that there is anything more to it. But regardless, by saying that we have no account at all for consciousness, I am left to believe that Dr. Peterson means that we basically know almost nothing substantive about this and because of his credentials I think he probably knows better and could, nay, should have worded it in a less obviously false way. At best one could argue that it was not intentional, not scripted, but then that's not my responsibility. I am left to respond to what he said, not what he meant. It's a psychology lecture, not a neuroscience lecture! He likes to go into depth but this format doesn't allow it... so he is stacking abbreviated concepts to keep it short. His topic seems to be an alternate way to understand reality (by looking at looking at it), and he makes the point we don't have universal knowledge, and that the very experience of consciousness, awareness, sentience itself falls within that domain of ignorance. I really cannot see that his point is to indicate the degree of maturation in neuroscience, and so I think its unrelated to the video to blame him for not doing so. Same thing with his use of materialism. I think he is just talking about perception, how it can limit us if we don't actively improve it. Personally, I tend to view it as a tensor field initially, and then ascribe structure by defining 3 types of gauges. That is how I like to perceive feelings, and on top of that as thought becomes more abstract I populate it with a more complex structure which ends up at a decision making matrix modelled around virtue ethics of self, deontology of society with a final pass of higher order effort to consequentialism. I think his point is having a relationship with perception, we can redefine our experience of it. He compares that to the normal approach of being indoctrinated into using scientific knowledge to unnecessarily limit out potential in that field of perception.
    • From time to time a poem (Last post by Edan)
    • You do not need me You do not need me Though I know you cling on And hope I might lead the way For you; and even though I walk behind, Over your shoulder you look to see If I am still in your shadow. You do not need me Though I know you call me Whenever it gets tougher For you; and alone silently pray That I might be the solution To take all that suffering away. You do not need me And I know you give me credit For all the times you made it Yourself; I didn’t actually do It for you, only helped you find The strength to bear it.
    • Rants far and wide (Last post by SecondVariation)
    • When you can feel a cold coming on, but like, super slowly. So right now I'm not sick enough to be like "Bleh, I'm sick, I'll stay home and rest", but at the same time I can feel that light haze and the stuffy nose and slight cough. If I'm going to be sick... make me sick for real so I can get through it! Gah.

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