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on living in a world like this

The other week I read that Peter Thiel is leaving Facebook woops I mean Meta’s board, so he can reportedly “focus on supporting candidates running for office who align with the Trump…

2022: 自乐 (self-amusement)

I write one of these every year to pair with my year-end review. Part of me ponders again what is the point of setting intentions for the year when the marking of…

the paradox of the self

When I was younger (actually, not too long ago) I was often trapped in my own pain and suffering. I would wonder very often why did terrible things constantly seem to happen…

To experience the everyday sublime

To experience the everyday sublime requires that we dismantle the perceptual conditioning that insists on seeing ourselves and the world as essentially comfortable, permanent, solid, and “mine.” It means to embrace suffering and conflict rather than to shy away from them, to cultivate the embodied attention that contemplates the tragic, changing, empty, and impersonal dimensions of life, rather than succumbing to fantasies of self-glorification or self-loathing. This takes time. It is a lifelong practice.

on the process of learning to be less unhappy

Having been raised in a materialistic society it is difficult to uncondition ourselves from believing that success equates to happiness. Some of us turned our backs on conventional success and chose to…

To acquaint myself with nothing

I have just finished two books on the concept of nothing: a book on John Cage, titled “Where the heart beats“, and Jenny Odell’s “How to do nothing“. I picked up the…

Thus if we choose as our goal the state of happiness for human beings

Thus if we choose as our goal the state of happiness for human beings (a goal deservedly ridiculed by Aldous Huxley in Brave New World), and if we involved all of society in a successful scientific program by which people became happy, we would be locked in a colossal rigidity in which no one would be free to question this goal, because our scientific operations could not transcend themselves to question their guiding purposes.

Huxley’s Brave New World is frankly satire, but portrays vividly the loss of personhood which he sees as associated with increasing psychological and biological knowledge. Thus, to put it bluntly, it seems that a developing social science (as now conceived and pursued) leads to social dictatorship and individual loss of personhood.