Ambivalence Part 3 - Transcript

Shownotes

0:00 Introduction to Ambivalence Part 3
6:33 Ambivalence Rooted in Life
8:54 The Human Mind and Opposite Tendencies
11:10 Manifestation of Opposing Forces in Language
14:13 Complexity in Religious Representations
16:11 Ambivalence Towards Capitalists
19:13 Ambivalence as History of Life
20:37 Pounding Back Projections into Personality
22:52 Eliminating Puppet Strings of Projections
23:50 Desiring Central Authority and Eliminating Ambivalence
27:42 Addressing the Fear
32:59 The Rule of "Don't Think"
36:03 Contradictions in Rules
42:58 The Mecosystem
47:40 Conquering Ambivalence
49:35 Effects of Rank Contradictions

Long Summary

In this lecture, I delve deep into the concept of ambivalence in humanity, emphasizing that individuals harbor a multiplicity of not always consistent opinions. I draw parallels from the animal kingdom to cellular biology to underscore the inherent opposing forces present in all living beings. Life, as I discuss, thrives on opposing characteristics such as healing and hurting, nurturing and aggressive tendencies, highlighting the essential role ambivalence plays in our success as a species. Furthermore, I explore the unique ability of humans to recognize and process ambivalence, attributing it to our capacity for language that enables us to weigh arguments, make decisions, and engage in philosophical debates. This analytical ability to navigate conflicting thoughts and emotions, I argue, is a defining aspect of humanity, forming the foundation of philosophical inquiry. I also connect ambivalence to ancient mythologies, showcasing how different cultures have tried to encapsulate the complexities of human nature through deities and belief systems. By challenging simplistic views of good and evil, I advocate for a more nuanced understanding of human nature and societal dynamics, illustrating how ambivalence is projected onto entities like capitalists, reflecting a complex mix of dependence, jealousy, and resentment. We delved deep into the concept of ambivalence, advocating for understanding and accepting its presence in our lives. By embracing complexity and multiple perspectives, we can aim to balance and integrate conflicting emotions and thoughts within ourselves, not allowing ambivalence to stagnate our personal growth. Through anecdotes and philosophical musings, we navigate the complexities of ethical living, confronting our ambivalence towards virtues and truth. By acknowledging and accepting our conflicting emotions, we gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and others, striving towards self-reflection and acceptance for personal transformation. Ultimately, we emphasize the importance of navigating internal conflicts and biases to avoid external control or manipulation. By confronting our ambivalence and fostering genuine self-awareness, we can engage with the world authentically and empower ourselves in the face of external influences. The lecture underlines the significance of embracing opposing thoughts and emotions as a natural part of human existence to foster personal growth and harmonious interactions with others.

Introduction to Ambivalence Part 3

[0:00] Good afternoon, everybody. Hope you're doing well. It's Stef.
It is the 3rd of April, 2008, and the snow has melted to the point where we can actually get out into the woods again and get a little leg on in the old philosophy walk and talk.

[0:18] So, this is Ambivalence Part 3, which is going to make, frankly, Ambivalence Parts 1 and 2 seem less coherent, but we shall do our very best to tackle the topic.
And it's an important topic because, as we have talked about recently, there is this little doodad that we are rolling around in our brains called the mecosystem.
And the mecosystem, in its essence, is the understanding of, or a theoretical framework for understanding the fairly consistent and simple, actually completely consistent and fairly simple, empirical observation that we are composed of more than one set of opinions, that we are composed of a multiplicity of not always consistent and and sometimes wildly divergent or opposing, opinions.
And that really is the core of this question of ambivalence, that we feel both X and non-X or Y or anti-X about just about every conceivable topic.

[1:36] Now, part of this I would view to be endemic to human nature, and it's pretty much endemic to life.
I mean, all animals possess both, well, let's say mammals at least, possess both ferocity and nurturing.
So when the lion is going after the gazelle, I'm sure it is full of the lion-ish equivalent of anger or the desired attacks.
When the lioness is nurturing and suckling her cubs and carrying them around in that way that makes it look like she's biting their heads off, then she is nurturing, of course.

[2:22] So, all animals, I mean, this is just to take a very simple example, but all animals above, I don't know, lizards maybe, have both nurturing and aggressive aspects to their personality.
Nurturing towards their young, aggressive towards their prey.
So, that's not too hard to understand, I'm sure.
Now, similarly, of course, even within our own bodies, there are cells that produce oxygen or synthesize it in the lungs from the air, and there are cells which consume oxygen in the lungs and so on.
There are cells that build, or there is the capacity within cells to repair, say, a flesh wound or something like that, or even heal a broken bone.
And there are of course cells within the body that or aspects to the body which are primarily concerned with.

[3:19] Attacking and destroying other organisms such as viruses and so on, bacteria.
There are those bacteria which our organs let live, the ones in the digestive tract without which digestion would be impossible and there are bacteria which we do not let live because they're harmful to us if you get strep throat or something like that.
So these are just some examples that life, in a very real sense, is founded upon the concept of opposing forces and a multiplicity of opposing forces.

[3:55] And that also, again, to stretch the metaphor, as I want to do, when we develop these opposing forces, they stick around forever.
I mean, just using, looking at it biologically, they just stick around forever, so... And that's good, right?
I still have the scar on my arm.

[4:18] From when I got my... I'm this old, right? I'm this old that when I got my smallpox inoculation, when I was five or six, I think.
No, I was six, because I remember being at boarding school when it happened.
We all would compare scars to see who jumped the least when we got the series of needles. And I think they stopped that in the late 70s.
But I have this smallpox antibody now until I'm dead. and even then, for some time afterwards, I'm sure.
Similarly, there are about, if I remember rightly, about a hundred varieties of the common cold.

[4:57] And when you get a cold, and you develop the necessary antibodies to combat it, you never get that cold again.
You just get a different damn cold later on.
So when a threat to the organism is perceived by the autonomous defense system, nervous system, immune system, antibodies are developed, which then stay around forever.
And that doesn't mean that they're always working.
I mean, if you get cold number 34 and you get the antibodies, they don't kick in again until you get cold number 34 again.
The fact that there are only about 100 varieties of cold means that at one of the conferences about getting old, is you get fewer cults. So, I'm sure there's a geriatric white-ass rap song in there somewhere.

[5:50] So, life is composed of opposing characteristics, healing and hurting, nurturing and eating, the production of oxygen or synthesis of oxygen from air to the consumption of it, healing cells, attacking cells.
We have lots of opposite characteristics. Life is itself sort of impossible without these opposite characteristics, a fundamental one, of course, of which is opposite but complementary, sort of male and female, right?
The fact that all but the simplest forms of life need the X and the Y chromosomes, the opposing genders, even plants. It's the whole point of pollination.

Ambivalence Rooted in Life

[6:34] So, this question of ambivalence is deeply rooted in life.
It's deeply rooted in the success of human beings.
And within our own minds, one of the things that differentiates us, or you could say one of the main things, if not the only thing that differentiates us from the rest of the species, is the ability to recognize and process ambivalence.
I mean, I shouldn't say it's the pure differentiator. If you throw, like if you're playing a catch with a dog, and you throw a stick into a fast-moving stream, by mistake, let's say, let's hope, then you can see this in the sort of whining and trembling haunches of the dog, because the dog desperately wants to get the stick, but at the same time is frightened of going into the stream.
It's too fast, it's too cold, or whatever.

[7:32] And the dog just waits for one desire to win over another.
For instance, you can't get a dog, I should imagine, certainly don't try it, you can't get a dog to voluntarily jump out of a moving plane, even if you throw the biggest, juiciest T-bone steak out the back.
But, of course, you can get a human being to jump out of a plane, as I did in my foolish youth, if you are interested in parachuting.
Because you can look at the fear, and there's a desire which you can rationally measure, or in this case, not so much rationally.
But human beings can look at the pluses and minuses, and weigh the arguments, and hopefully make a correct decision, or a positive decision.
And this is really why we do what we do, right? This is why there is such a thing as philosophy.
There is no philosophy for dogs, because as I talk about in the Free Will series, you can't get a dog to compare thoughts against an abstract standard, or actions against an abstract standard. and lack language, conceptual ability.
And so a dog doesn't have that ability to have... Sorry, I'm just crossing a big ice thing here. Make sure I don't get too wet.
It's melting now, baby. It's quite the thunderous river.
Well, thunderous relative to its normal language meandering.

The Human Mind and Opposite Tendencies

[8:55] So why... I mean, sorry, this is the basic, the rhetorical question, sort of why would the human mind be any different from everything else in life, which is composed of opposite tendencies in a balanced ecosystem.
If your immune system doesn't attack enough, then you have immunodeficiencies.
If your immune system attacks too much, you have, what is it, arthritis, or you have cancer, I think it is. Oh no, that's when it produces too much and doesn't attack enough.
But when your immune system starts attacking the healthy cells, you have some not insignificant health problems and so on. So it's all a balance, right?

[9:31] So I'm sort of proposing that the human mind is part of that.
And why I want to talk about this is, well, a number of reasons, but there are two main ones.
One is to sort of explain or help us understand the ecosystem.
When you first come across the ecosystem, when you first start to really encounter these inhabitants, you know, that close encounter is a we are not alone kind of thing.
When you first start to encounter the mecosystem, don't you feel kind of broken and crazy?
I know I did. But on hindsight and upon reflection, it would be weird if it wasn't that way, in my opinion.
Not just because of the challenges of history that we face to one degree or another within our families, but also because it would just be the only organ in the known biological world that wasn't an ecosystem of opposing tendencies all aligned for the sake of health and well-being and strength, hopefully.
So, if we were.

[10:40] Ego, if our ego was the master in its own house, so to speak, then it would be weird.
It would be like the most complex organ you would expect would have the most ambivalence, right?
I mean, what does an amoeba have to do? Eat, consume, divide.
So, you know, there's only a couple of, so to speak, opposing tendencies within an amoeba, but within a human mind, which is almost infinitely more complex,

Manifestation of Opposing Forces in Language

[11:08] wouldn't you expect there to be opposing tendencies?
And because the human mind is so innately developed to the analysis and production of thought, wouldn't you expect those opposing forces to be manifested in language?
They're not manifested in colors. I mean, they may have aspects of colors, these characteristics of these characters, but they're manifested in language.
So if life is an ever-increasing series of ambivalences or or balancing forces all designed for the promotion of health, if in balance, an ecosystem, then to me it would stand to reason, though it's not a logical proof, it's just a, you know, according to every prior understanding or knowledge of what life is, it would be weird if it wasn't this way, that's sort of all I'm trying to say.
It would make sense that the human mind would have ambivalence, and that ambivalence would take the form of language.

[12:06] And we know that ambivalence goes back to, I mean, at least Socrates, if not, I mean, certainly before then, you can find lots of evidence of it.
But Socrates would stand for 20 hours straight when he was in the army trying to think about, think his way through a problem.
That's because he's having a debate with himself. If you look back even further at the ancient Egyptian gods, set and all this kind of stuff, those weird jackal-headed freakazoids, no more freaky than an undead Jewish zombie, but we can see that within the mind of the Egyptians was a constellation of mythological creatures, all of which represented the nurturing side, the warlike side, the wise side, the angry side, the loving side, the sexual side, the trickster side, which is often the role assigned to or taken, in fact, by the unconscious in a time of over-controlled rationality.
The Apollonian side, the Dionysian side, particularly, is talked about by Nietzsche.

[13:13] And when you try to contain the complexity of human ambivalence in a sort of lexical mythological set that isn't enough to contain the complexities of the human ecosystem, then you get some very strange effects.
I mean, if you look at the richness of Greek and Roman culture compared to the devastating paucity of culture in the Middle Ages, you can see that attempting to squeeze the massive complexity of the human ecosystem, into a good God and an evil devil, it's not enough. It's not enough.

[13:56] That's why the flourishing cultures have a kind of paganism to them.
And that's why strict Christianity produces such crappy art, right?
Or strict monotheism of just about any kind include Islam and so on in here as well.

Complexity in Religious Representations

[14:14] And this is why self-mocking religions like Judaism, well, certain aspects of Judaism tend to produce some really good art, although tortured, right?
Because there is room for more than this simple play of light and dark, black and white, but complexity.
And so, for instance, where does jealousy sit in the Roman pantheon or the Greek pantheon, well, you have jealous gods who can also be good, but are human and brawly.
And so there can be a good characteristic or a good personality which contains some aspects of jealousy.
On the other hand, in the Christian world, and you think sort of the Middle Ages and so on, we have this situation of this world where...
Sock out. Cut down the wind here.
Oh, it's all too technical for words. Sorry about that.
That should be a little better. Nope. Okay.

[15:07] Scratch that. Sorry about the wind. But here we have a situation where all of the evil characteristics, all of the ambivalence is poured into an evil vessel that, of course, is lord of this world.
All greed, gluttony, anger, and so on, and rationality and independence and so on, all the good things that come out of that stuff sometimes.
It's just stuffed into a massive bag of evil called Satan, which is not satisfying, right?
It doesn't give any room, doesn't give any artistic growth. Everyone gets tense and everything is about self-management, self-control.

[15:45] So there's no spontaneity, there's no jazz left in human life when you have this dualistic, Manichenean kind of religiosity.
And of course the same thing occurs with the state.
And of course we have ambivalence towards capitalists. I mean, of course we have ambivalence towards capitalists.

[16:06] Because they create jobs, and so we feel dependent upon them.

Ambivalence Towards Capitalists

[16:11] And they make more money, and so we feel jealous and resentful of them.
And they tell us what to do, and so we feel jealous and resentful of them and angry towards them, and we need them.
And this, of course, is one of the reasons why people have a strong tendency, to project all of their ambivalence about their parents into capitalists and capitalism, right?
It's the, well, again, complexity. So, a weak people tend to come up with, and this is Nietzsche talked about as well, credit me on this one, but a weak people tend to come up with dualistic deities, simplistic black and white deities, because they're not allowed to have any complexity.
A slave is not allowed to have any complexity.
A master can be angry and then laugh, and then he can be jealous, and then he can be tender, and then, right?
But a slave doesn't just shut up and get me the wine, right?
Slaves don't get complexity, and so slaves create stupid-ass, simple, dualistic deities, which they then remain enslaved to.
Two, that God is just the slavery of certain Jews writ large into Christian deity.

[17:28] And Muhammad, of course, is the same. It's the same damn thing.
It is a rich culture that accepts ambiguity.
It is a rich culture that accepts, worships, relishes ambivalence.
Now, I would say that should not be, you know, the end of the road, because we are celebrating ambivalence, but we are also trying to heal ambivalence, to bring ambivalence into balance and into just proportion, so that we do not reject anger for the sake of anger, but we do not enact anger for the sake of anger, but everybody gets a seat at the table.
Right that's an ecosystem out of balance i mean we know all of this stuff from the environmentalists it's still useful to mention it right an ecosystem out of balance is like when rabbits i think were introduced to australia and they bred well like uh you know and they then stripped the entire landscape bare and then they um all starved to death And then the plants grew back that they'd formerly eaten and so on.

[18:40] And that, of course, is an ecosystem wildly out of balance because it's managed to control. Hi.
And if you look at the history, should you care to, of the Yellowstone National Park in the United States, well, you have a similar situation.
You have one animal being introduced, which causes an imbalance.
Or they introduce another animal, which causes a further imbalance and it's about toast the entire landscape through a deft series of government ineptitudes, you have the same sort of issue. Manic-depressive, same sort of issue.

Ambivalence as History of Life

[19:14] So, this is just a sort of brief introduction to how the history, the very rapid history, of ambivalence is really the history of life, the history of our species.
And as I talked about in Ambivalence Part 1, one of the main purposes of a rational and psychologically aware philosophy is to pound back projections into the personality, back into the personality.
We are not afraid of the thunder. The fear of thunder is within us.
Because of our fear of the thunder, we do not attempt to appease the thunder gods. hearts, we attempt to work with our fear as a phobia, as a self-generated and self-sustained state of emotional being, of emotional experience.
We look for the thoughts which generate our fear of the thunder as an internal state, not as something that is pushed within us from outside, from gods, devils, and so on.
So it's all about pounding back the projection into the personality so that it can be managed for what it is, which is an internal state, which is an emotional state that follows particular thoughts, supremacists.
I'm talking the realm of emotion, not sensation, right? If you stick me with a knife, it's not my intellectual, it's not my thought which produces the emotion, it's my nervous system.
So we're not talking sensation, we're talking emotion.

Pounding Back Projections into Personality

[20:37] So this is all about pounding the stuff back. And this is what we've been doing from the very beginning.
Countries don't exist, they're no more real than a thunder god.
God. So, if you claim to love a country, then you can't be loving a country.
You must be loving certain ideas.
Let's find out what those ideas are so they don't get hijacked and they're not used to manipulate you by others who claim to represent this non-existent being.
Politicians, of course, are to countries exactly as priests are to gods.
Because we have not internalized that which is truly internal, we are not conscious of it as being an internal state, then our projections are like these massive levers that other people can work to our detriment.

[21:22] If I am terrified of the Thunder God, then some ass clown can come along and say, I can control the Thunder God.
You know, give me half your crops and I will give you peace with this.
And I will, you know, of course you don't. All you're doing is managing your fear, but you think it's external, right?
And because you think it's external, you are open to being exploited by other people.
This, of course, is exactly how it works with the family, right? Father.
Father doesn't exist. Bob exists, right? Bob who had sex exists.
Father as a category is just an abstraction.
We can't love the category father. We can only love or not love the actions of Bob.
But if we have this thing out there called father, which is worthy of respect no matter what Bob does, then we immediately lower the quality requirement for Bob's actions.
And if you have to buy a product no matter how shitty it's made, then inevitably that quality is going to go down. Natural.
If you have to buy a product, no matter how shittily it's made, quality is going to go down.
If you have to love your parents no matter how they behave, their actions will always get worse.
That's why I've talked about privatizing the family and people can be fired.
It's just around improving quality.
Works in the free market will work in the family, will work with religion and in terms of eliminating it, we'll work with the state.
But it's just about pounding these projections back.

Eliminating Puppet Strings of Projections

[22:52] Because every projection that's left out is just another puppet string that every asshole on the planet can grab and twist and make you dance and make you cry, make you laugh, make you swell with false pride, and just leave us.

[23:08] Might as well have electrodes implanted in your brain. Every trailing wire is a projection that you think is outside yourself. It's actually inside yourself.
And that, of course, is RTR as well.
You state your feelings. You do not state conclusions, because conclusions is mythology.
You state your thoughts. You state your feelings. You do not state conclusions, conclusions because conclusions eliminate ambivalence.
It's because of X. Well, you've just stopped asking questions, you've made up illusory answers, and now you will be controlled by whoever claims to represent those answers, or you will try and control other people by claiming to represent those answers.

Desiring Central Authority and Eliminating Ambivalence

[23:51] And of course, this mad hunger that we're not born with, but which is very quickly provoked within us.
This mad hunger for one voice that will drown out all the others, for one central authority that will blow away all of the complexities and discomforts and glory, unfortunately, and joy and richness and depth and power of ambivalence, we desire that within ourselves.
Or rather, that desire is inflicted upon us.

[24:24] And because we desire that voice, like I want the voice that's going to be right and I want to shout out all the other voices, I want to push away all the other voices, I want to kill all the ambivalence, I want to kill the complexity and opposing thoughts within my mind with one central authority that is the way it is, well, that's the family. Do as I say, not as I do.
When you're in my house, you go by my rules. No negotiation.
Orders. Yubble.
That, of course, is religion.
What would Jesus do? What does Jimmy Swaggart tell me to do?

[24:59] That is the state. Who is the final arbiter? It's the guy with the gun.
Yeah, we get to vote, but we get to vote for one voice, one solution, one answer, one gun that tells everyone else what to do.
And this is why libertarians make no fucking progress at all when it comes to debating, because they don't understand.
Because libertarianism is just another rank substitution of one thing for complex things.
The founding fathers, the Constitution, Ron Paul.
Even the free market.
The free market is like the word ambiguity, right? Unless you really get it, saying the free market does stuff or solves stuff or doesn't help, right?
Well, of course, just by the by.

[25:49] Libertarians both love and hate the free market, right? As libertarians love the free market, except the free market of ideas, right? Because they lose. Always.
They've made no progress whatsoever over the past, I don't know, as long as these statistics have been kept.
It's always 7 to 8 to 9 to 10 percent libertarians, that's it.
Even with the internet, even with Ron Paul, that's it.
They don't win. And the reason that they don't win is because it's just important to understand how projected people are.
Then when they're talking, and we've talked about again this from the beginning, when people talk about the world, they're just talking about themselves.

[26:31] So someone says, I'm terrified of the thunder god. The libertarian comes along and says, we should have a smaller thunder god.
Or there is no thunder god. But what they don't talk about is the fear.
You address the fear, you'll never get anywhere in addressing just the effects, right?
It's like putting a band-aid over a hemophiliac's wound, right?
Until you get to the source, right?
Lack of clotting cells, right? It's like bandaging up a diabetically rotting foot, right?
Until you deal with the source, you get nowhere. Nowhere.
And the veterans know that, of course, because they're doing the same thing.
Just dealing with their desire to be different, desire to be superior, a desire to be beyond the pale, a desire to be smarter, a desire to be rejected, a desire to be humiliated, a desire to be ineffective.
I mean, it's all a Simon. The Libertarian is a big goddamn Simon the Boxer thing, if you know from the book Real-Time Relationships.
But when you say to somebody, there should be no government, what they translate that to, and it's not even a translation, because when they think of the government, they're thinking of self-government.

Addressing the Fear

[27:43] When libertarians or anarchists, when we say there should be no government, what are people here?
There should be no self-government. I should surrender to every single one of my contradictory impulses, and I should welcome, relish, and embrace the dear instantaneous process of going completely insane.

[28:03] When you take away, when people are afraid of the thunder god, you take away the thunder god. It doesn't get rid of their fear.
They just invent a new god, right? I mean, we've seen this over and over again in human history.
We can't get rid of the effects of this kind of emotional projection where we put our justly internal ecosystem out there in the world.
This is another reason why government power always grows, right?
The more you repress your anger, the more angry you get.
That's why it's important to talk to people when they're young.
By the time you're talking to some 50-year-old about his anger, his anger has turned so rancid and aggressive that, of course, he's going to immediately think of Mohawk, leather-headed, motorcycle-driving, shotgun-wielding, rocket-launcher-propping, stereotypical anarchists, because that's where his anger has become. come.
It's like academics, right? Academics have... I mean, this is Hayek's theory.
Academics are socialist because it gives them more power, creates more work for them, right?
In a free market, the number of intellectuals that are required is far fewer than it is in a centrally planned or controlled or managed status system.

[29:15] So, academics...

[29:19] Sorry, academics are the ones who are exploiting, the masses exploiting the working man, right?
They get their lovely professorships with tenure, and they get summers in Italy to study Tuscan architecture.
And, of course, what is their big concern and their big worry is that faceless corporations out there are going to exploit the working man.
But that's all projection, right? It's all projection.

[29:49] And so, when you say to an academic, there should be no government, you're basically saying to him, you're a parasite.
You are exploitive and you live off the blood money of evil, right?
And he knows that. He knows that.
So, given that he knows that, what's he going to do with it?
Well, he's just going to create an artificial enemy, right?
Corporations and maybe even the government if he's more on the libertarian side.
But this is the danger, the power, the horror of mythology, right?
Pounding these projections back into people's souls is really hard.
It's really tough. And we all know this, right? When it comes to actually living our values, that means that we stop projecting.
And we live with the ambivalence we have about virtue, which helps us to understand the ambivalence that others have about virtue, right?
The fear and horror that we have when we ditch aggressive friends who are corrupt or evil and not friends.
That horror, that fear, that loathing, that nausea, that's what other people feel.
It allows us, right? So once we understand that we both love and hate ethics.

[31:05] I'm ambivalent as hell towards ethics, right? on the plus side overall, but once we understand that it's we ourselves who are ambivalent about ethics, even those of us who love the truth and who love philosophy, it's what the brave Tuttle was talking about, how hard it all is. It is hard.
It's hard to withdraw projections. It's hard to live rationally.
It's hard to live right. It's very hard.
But when we do that, we're no longer controlled by other people tweaking us with their hostility towards philosophy.
I don't know that there are many people out there who've gone through more hatred and hostility towards philosophy than I have.
Maybe there are. I don't want to sound grandiose, but if I ever put out my crazy talk book, you'll see what I mean.

[31:53] Because of that, because I have come to terms with my own hatred of the truth, my own hatred of philosophy and of ethics, and I accept that as a valid seat at the table, right?
It's that guy, it's that part of me who hates ethics that keeps me away from the disaster scenarios, the lifeboat scenarios, the flagpole scenarios, quote of the day.
Brilliant. A listener on the board said about these flagpole scenarios, why are there flagpoles in Ancapistan?
That's quite right, of course. Let's just hope that they're banners for DROs.
But because I have, I think, come to terms with my own ambivalence about philosophy, the truth, the pain of the truth.
When somebody is angry at philosophy, passive-aggressively angry at philosophy, like this Ron Paul guy came into the chat room the other day and was all up in our face about how impractical we were and so on.
I've gone through that. I've been through that. I'm I'm comfortable with that.
He can say that. It doesn't offend me. It doesn't upset me. I understand.
I've been there. Worked through it. It's got a seat at the table.

The Rule of "Don't Think"

[33:00] But if I am angry at philosophy, and I'm angry at being angry about philosophy, and I feel that it is bad of me, if I self-attack for being hostile to, for myself being hostile to or skeptical of philosophy.

[33:18] Then, of course, when somebody else comes along and is hostile to or skeptical of philosophy, it triggers all of my attacks designed for myself.

[33:27] The habits, right? When we manhandle parts of ourselves out the room, all we do is hand that control to other people.
Everybody who's exiled joins a foreign army and wars against us.
That is the price of attempting to manage ambivalence through self-rejection, through self-control, through self-management in the negative way.
Everyone we evict joins a foreign army and...
And so the last thing that I'll mention in this topic is this question of the genesis of the mecosystem.
And there is always going to be this aspect to human life, to human nature. And we like that.
Imagine how ambivalent Shakespeare was about so many things.
It's what produces some great art, to be or not to be.
So we don't want to get rid of ambivalence, and we can't.

[34:23] But that having been said it doesn't mean that we shouldn't inoculate ourself against the worst forms of it and that of course is reversing the immediate natural trend which is you know to avoid inoculation or smallpox because it was painful as hell actually and to avoid the discomfort of experiencing our own ambivalence withdrawing our own projections so that we're not susceptible to the control of other people but it comes about in its most virulent sort of present day and I think historically, so form, it comes about because we are manipulated as children, right?
I take a very, very simple example, and you can, of course, extrapolate this to kingdom come in your own history, in your own childhood, but it comes about very simply and very powerfully very early on.

[35:16] And it's when we receive hypocritical bullying instructions, whether they're aggressive or passive-aggressive, And I got a million of them, I remember. I'll just talk about one from when I was a kid. Don't worry, it's not traumatic, particular, overtly.
That I was doing something. If I remember rightly, and I don't know if this is true or not, but my mom asked me to go and get a cup from the kitchen.
And I picked up a mug instead or something like that. And I came back and she was in one of her short-tempered and irritable moods, which lasted, well, actually, that was just her personality. But I came back with the wrong mug, right? And she said, I told you to get me this cup.
And I said, but I thought, and she said, don't think.

Contradictions in Rules

[36:04] And that, of course, is a huge axe through the firewood of the South, right?
In terms of splitting and shaving and so on into more than two pieces.
Don't think, of course, is such a fundamentally contradictory position.
It's a self-definiting statement, right? I think you should not think.
Well, if it's you should not think, then it's not a rule, right?
It's just an imposition.
But if I shouldn't think, then I couldn't even get up to go and get the cup, right?
Because I have to process, go get the cup. I have to think that, think about going to the kitchen, thinking about picking the cup up, bringing it back, and so on.
So, don't think is just a fundamentally contradictory.
And of course, you have to want to follow rules, which requires thinking, analysis of rules, understanding of rules and thinking.
You have to want to follow rules or feel that rules are a value in order to accept and act upon the rule, don't think.
So you have to want to think in order to process don't think.

[37:13] It is fundamentally a kind of murderous statement, right? Those that don't think are dead.
Don't think is don't live, right?
And of course, the reality was that don't think translated to be convenient.
Don't irritate me, don't bug me, do what I want, not what I say.
If there are any mistakes, they're yours.
Even though I'm the older person, I'm the adult here, you as the four-year-old child are the one who is to blame for any mistakes, right?
So the inexperienced child is to blame, the inexperienced dependent child is to blame, the adult who chose to have the child is not, right?
So we have such an enormity of contradictions that are brought into being.
You must value rules in order to process don't think, but if you don't think, you can't process any rules.
I want you to do what I want, which is to not think. But if you do not think, you cannot do what I want.
I mean, you could spend half a day, and I'm sure that I have over the course of my life, just looking at that statement, don't think, and peeling back all the layers of contradiction, right?
Don't think is as contradictory as I order you to not obey any orders.

[38:32] It's the do as I say, not as I do. It's the while you're in my house, You will obey my rules.
There are so many contradictions. And there is something that is put forward as...
I mean, what I distinctly felt was that I was bad because I was irritating my mother, right?
So an innocent mistake, like getting the wrong glass, makes me a bad person because...

[38:56] Irritate your mother. However, for my mother to humiliate and confuse me for getting the wrong glass apparently is a just and right action, right?
So there's such a twisted Gordian knot of rank, evil, and self-serving hypocrisy and brutality contained in that one statement, that of course it's going to create as great a degree of complexity and contradiction prediction within me.

[39:27] So now I have a rule called, don't piss off your mother, but I don't know what is going to predict that, right? Other times I'd make a mistake and she'd laugh.
So I have a rule which can't be followed. I must value rules, these rules can't be followed.
I'm told to value rules, so rules are good, but I'm told not to think, and therefore trying to process rules is bad.
So thinking is good and bad, obedience is good and bad, rules are good and bad, right?
And overarching all of this, of course, is the simple knowledge or realization that my mother is depending upon my desire to please her, to humiliate me.
If I didn't care squat about my mom's opinions, then I wouldn't feel at all bad. head, right?
So, at the same time, I get this whiff of truly satanic evil, which is using the virtue of a child, using the desire for goodness and praise of a child to control and belittle and humiliate a child, right?
Which is, you know, like a sadist going to medical school so he could learn exactly where the nerve clusters are so that he can do more damage, right? Cause more pain.
Only it's a little bit more different because, well, we'll have to get into all of that.

[40:42] But so I have to obey my mother, but then if I genuinely try to obey my mother, right?
If she says, don't think, what she's saying is don't do anything that I don't want you to do, of which, of course, the natural consequence would be to do whatever she tells me to do.
And if I don't understand something, then I should ask, right?
But of course, since I tried to do that, I very quickly found out that that was not going to work either.
So if my mother says, don't think, and then what I do is I say, so you want me to get the cup, the cup in the kitchen? Yes.
I go into the kitchen, I come back and I say, there are four cups in the kitchen.
Which cup do you want? Can you describe it to me more closely?
The blue one. There are two blue ones.
There's one on the stove and there's one in the sink which one do you want me to get if I do that.

[41:44] Then, of course, she gets angry. And she says, oh, easier to do it myself.
Why don't you think for yourself?
Why do you always have to come running back to me? Right?
So now, right, and we've all been through this, whether it's priests or teachers or parents or siblings or whatever. We've all gone through this.
If you disagree with someone when they want you to agree with them, then you're stubborn and difficult and contrarian argumentative you have oppositional defiant disorder you are odd if you agree with somebody when they want you to disagree with them then you are compliant and you can't think for yourself too conformist right so if my mother says don't think or always check with me first and then i check with her about everything when people are over she will get irritated at me and say think for yourself right because of course and And this is all wrapped up in the complexity of what happens when you're alone and what happens when people are over, and so on.
So when we were alone, it was one way. When the Jehovah's Witnesses guys came over, it was quite another, and so on.
So all of these whim-based, contradictory, convoluted rules produce the...

The Mecosystem

[42:59] Or, I should say, more accurately, exacerbate this aspect of the personality, exacerbate the mecosystem. And we normally have this, right?
I want to know, I don't know, I feel uncomfortable, I close the gap by learning.
I mean, that's all part of life and I think part of the healthy growth of an intellectual life.
And this process of an infinity of rules and all of the emotional horror that that infinity of contradictory rules creates, right, about how.

[43:29] Rules are being used to control you, that your desire for order, for consistency, for predictability, that all of that is being used to control and fragment you, that your desire for food is causing you to be starved.
All of that horror that occurs emotionally, that the value of rules is perceived by those in authority only to the degree that they can be used, or they can be used to destroy rules, which of course is what those in power are all about, to have no rules but themselves, right?
That's why power hates philosophy. That's why untruths, why parents hate philosophy.
That's why bullies hate philosophy. That's why priests hate science.
Limits their capacity to, right? It withdraws projections which limits their capacities to lever people around the way they want them to.
I mean, if all the Mormons on the planet accepted science and philosophy, right, these spiritual elders, the head parasites would not be able to lever 10% of the income out of their people's wallets, right?
That's the levers they use to control people. So philosophy is about panning those levers back in.
Not good for people in power. Not good for those who wish to abuse, control, manipulate, undermine, humiliate, and prey upon others.

[44:49] When we're kids and we go through this process, that everybody tells us what the rules are and we are attacked any time we try to put those rules into practice consistently.
I mean, what is it? Somebody posted on the province of Quebec, there was some government thing.
Oh, I wish I could be in the future where you people are listening to this without government. Oh, I wish maybe I'd get myself frozen.
I'll wake up to see you all, but it It would be a beautiful, beautiful thing.
But kids are told that taxes are good because they're used.
The money is taken and used to buy library books, right?
But then, of course, if you steal from your mother's purse and go and buy a book for the library, then, of course, that's theft and that's bad, right?
So all of this kind of nonsense is just all over the place, and we can all remember countless examples of this in our education, right?
That we are only supposed to be sensitive to the feelings and prejudices of those in power, and that they only use our sensitivities and prejudices, desires, preferences, to control and humiliate us, right?
To make us laugh at each other and tease each other in the horizontal efficiency of slave-on-slave brutality.

[46:08] So, I believe that we have a natural ecosystem, a natural series of opposing thoughts and emotions, and that's healthy.
The body couldn't survive if all the cells only ever did one thing, right? Without balance, without opposing forces, right?
Cancer isn't cells doing one thing, reproducing, right? Without the opposing force, balance. So, I think that would be natural, and I think that's healthy.
I think that's wonderful. I think that's the essence of life, and for sure the essence of being a human being, is to hold opposing thoughts and to negotiate with them.
And the people who can't imagine DROs working are the people who don't negotiate with themselves.

[46:59] One DRO would grow to dominate all the others and crush them out of existence. We'd get a new state.
They say that so immediately and with such emphasis, you know they're not thinking about the future, right?
You know that they're talking about their psychological history.
That that's what they did with their own doubts. Just swelled one indignant part up at the expense of the remains of the personality.
Crushed them all, drove them all out. and now they are chronically porcupined with little irritation levers that anytime they brush up against anyone it all goes off, right?
Damn it, how could you people be so impractical and stupid as to think of a stateless society? Come on!

Conquering Ambivalence

[47:41] It's nothing to do with us, right? It's just they have conquered ambivalence, with brute self-authority without negotiation so they can't conceive if DRO is working.
The reason I say to everybody, every part of you gets a seat at the table, is so once you get used to that kind of negotiation with yourself, first of all, you won't be so fussed by disagreements from others.
Once you've worked through the majority of volatile disagreements with yourself, other people disagreeing with you, it doesn't, it's their issue, it's their business, right?
It doesn't, you're withdrawing all these levers, right?
All these hot buttons.
And you'll really get the DRO thing when you have, you know, let your own bulls gore you, so to speak, and live to tell about it and giving them a seat at the table.
And of course, when children are exposed to fewer contradictory rules.

[48:41] Then their mycosystem, sort of the cancer mycosystem won't come about.
I mean, the natural, healthy and normal ambivalence of having different opinions about things and needing to work them out is natural. It's healthy.
But it won't turn leprous. It won't turn destructive. It, black market, right? It'd be like a free market as opposed to a command and control economy.
A command and control economy is always unstable. It feeds on itself. It's doomed to demise.
Prickly, defensive, and aggressive.
And that, of course, is why we talk about parents and parenting and the voluntarism of parenting and the voluntarism of adult relationships with your parents and self.
So that people can teach their own children fewer contradictory rules and they'll be exposed to less contradictory stuff, right?
Like, my dad says this is good, but my granddad does us the complete opposite, and my dad just sits there and smiles, that's going to provoke more freaky-ass mycosystemics.

Effects of Rank Contradictions

[49:35] It's going to exacerbate the mycosystem in the kid beyond what is healthy, right? Too many rank contradictions, right?
And when you see those contradictions come to light, the confusion and the fear and the upset and the suspicion in your child's eyes, of course, that makes most people, almost everyone, it makes them more brutal, right? We don't want that.

[49:59] Reducing the brutality to children is the only way that the liberty of the future can be secured, right?

[50:07] So, anyway, I hope that this has been helpful. Thank you for your patience as I've gone through this series. It's been complex and challenging, I think.
Certainly was for me to, you know, come up with all of this stuff and try and find a way.
I'm sorry that I wasn't able to come up with a central metaphor, but I guess being somewhat what comfortable with ambivalence.
I was relatively able to live with that.
And hopefully it makes good sense as it stands. Thank you so much for listening as always.

[50:34] Thank you so much for your donations. I hope that you will consider throwing a few more shekels my way so that I have to go back to advertising.
That's the thing these days. There's no substitute for the ads for drawing people in. There's just no other way to do it.
So costs are up a little from that standpoint.
So I hope that you will see a way clear to throwing a few shekels my way.
And thank you so much for all your support.
I will talk to you soon. Well, thank you so much.



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