Monday, April 16, 2007

The Diamond Sutra with a Keg Halfway to OM

The hour is late, and I have nothing else to write about, so I might as well expand upon my brief response to the earthbound troll who left his crawling card under cover of dorkiness last night. Reader Pissquatomy wrote,

"I would say the Dalai Llama (sic) is higher up on the spiritual pecking order than Bob. I mean, c'mon -- Bob's very handy with words, does Yoga passably well, but still -- is he directly plugged into The Big OM like the Dalai? Unquestionably, no.

"There are certain others that are 'up there.' Byron Katie comes to mind, as does Eckart Tolle. Bob is a man on the ascent, but he is not yet playing in the majors.

"Bob will have to give Petey a larger speaking role if Bob is to make his bones as a mystic. The whole liguisto-philosophico-politco thing that Bob's into will never a mystic's reputation make."

My initial response was,

"It's called humor -- that was a joke about the Dalai Lama. He is obviously a sweet man.

"Having said that, it would have been a much more serious joke if this country had been founded by Tibetan Buddhists instead of Judeo-Christians. There are spiritual principles that work in one's head -- 'the big OM,' if that's what you call it -- and those that actually change the world for the better. If you want to speak of a spiritual pecking order, then give me James Madison over the Dalai Lama any day. One revolutionized (and helped save, but only repeatedly) the world, while the other can't even help Richard Gere think coherently. (I know, I know, you should have heard him before. Good point.)

"The other DL is harmless so long as people don't put his principles into practice on a widespread scale. There is nothing noble, moral, or praiseworthy about pacifism, for it simply rolls out the red carpet for the wicked to annihilate the decent."

*****

Now, to flesh out my response: first of all, I do not dismiss all of what the troll says out of hand. True, some of it is silly -- even bearing the unmistakable marks of idiocy -- but other aspects are worthy of a serious response. In this regard, I do recognize a glaring weakness in myself, which is that I do tend to forget that I used to believe virtually all of the stupid ideas that I now dismiss. In short, I have no hesitation in acknowledging that I was once an idiot with a lot of idiotic political and spiritual notions, but how best to help the current idiots is the question.

In this regard, intelligence is no defense whatsoever, so never assume -- as many trolls seem to do -- that my arguments are ever based on some version of "I'm smarter or more clever than you," much less that I am supposedly "handy with words." Our leftist looniversity bins are protected habitats for the "intelligent stupid" among us. If anything, intelligence and verbal facility will cause one to stray down a literally infinite number of false paths, since they easily engender pride and arrogance.

I say "infinite," because, paradoxically, the false path is many-branched while the true path is One -- even though the One path is infinitely diverse in its particulars. History demonstrates with great force that intelligence is no barrier to stupidity, and that more often than not it is simply the glossy surface of a bad or evil idea. This is why it is so stupid to suggest that President Bush is "stupid." First of all, he obviously isn't, but the only relevant issue is whether he is correct. How stupid to think otherwise.

What I am saying is that I am no more intelligent today than I was fifteen or twenty years ago, but that only now can I say that I know how to think properly. And although I am now generally able to think properly, it is still an evolving process. For example, in the last week I have had the unenviable task of rereading my book in search of typos and small errors. It is a jarring experience, because parts of the book no longer reflect who I have become in the interim, and if you think I'm hard on trolls, you should hear how I treat my past intelligent but stupidself. I don't even want to get into it.

A number of trolls have criticized what they perceive as a lack of compassion on my part, or maybe even whole. I am not going to try to justify myself, but will only say that some people are allegedly helped by what I write, others not. If I try to tailor the message to those who are not helped, then I will no longer be helpful to those who are helped, so it is a catch 22. Put it this way: I am only writing for those whom I am able to help (including, hopefully, myself), and no one can help everyone. I am not nearly that grandiose, and just grateful that a few people are helped, even "changed." That's all I need and much more than I ever expected.

This is even -- or I should say, especially -- true of psychotherapy. There are many different psychological theories, but ultimately what is most important -- assuming a certain level of competence -- is the relationship with the therapist, the chemistry, the rapport. And I would add that you want your therapist to be higher than you on the "pecking order," however you conceptualize it.

For what is the alternative? Trying to be helped by someone who is unable to even help himself, who has never mastered his own mind, who has not evolved to a developmentally higher level, who doesn't know how to live properly or have rewarding relationships, who hasn't reconciled life's many inherent polarities and conflicts, who blames the external world for his failures, in the manner of a leftist victocrat? You don't just want someone who knows more than you do, but someone who is more than you are. At least I did.

But in our flatland world of postmodern nihilism, it is arrogant and probably racist to say that one person or culture is higher or more evolved than another. I have never given a moment's thought to those who may or may not be "below" me on someone's cosmic scale, because I am too busy looking up to those who are above me. Truly, the flatlanders are the arrogant ones, for if there is no God, they are ipso facto gods, and samskary ones at that. In fact, I would be greatly distressed to learn that I represented the highest point in the universe. Thankfully, this is incoonceivable to me, and I am grateful every day that there are fixed stars in whose light I am able to navigate my life.

Now, as I said, I was once an idiot, so I feel well qualified to critique idiots who believe the idiotic things I once did. But I've thought about this, and there is no way to do it in the gentle and maternal way that these wimps demand. In fact, this feminized orientation to Truth is a symptom of the problem. In my case, the people who helped me most were fierce and uncompromising advocates of the Truth. They did not water down their message for my benefit, but simply put it out there for people to pick up or reject as they wish. There are people I now revere whom I once detested, in exactly the manner that people detest me.

(And trust me, they do -- I had a particularly vivid instance of it in an email correspondence this weekend, most illustrative of how the leftist mind works -- more later. Suffice it so say that we dispassionately regard them as ignorant and therefore misguided, while they passionately regard us as a priori evil and therefore everything which naturally follows from that, ultimately the dehumanization which is a prelude to violence, verbal or otherwise.)

At the same time, I am grateful that my nonlocal higher-ups, had they known about it, would have dismissed my girlish emotionality with the wave of a hand and said, "come back when you can handle the truth. And don't hurry." No compromise. And certainly no anger or resentment, much less a need for disciples or followers. St. Paul was an demanding jerk, which I say with the greatest admiration.

Here is how Sri Aurobindo handled it: "I do not readily accept disciples, as this path of Yoga is a difficult one and can be followed only if there is a special call." In another letter he balked at the notion of trying to create some kind of mass movement, because "for serious work it is a poison.... a movement in the case of a work like mine means the founding of a school or a sect or some other damned nonsense. It means that hundreds or thousands of useless people join in and corrupt the work or reduce it to a pompous farce from which the Truth that was coming down recedes into secrecy and silence."

Useless people?! That hurt my self esteem! Nobody's useless, except conservatives! We're all perfect, just as we are!

And Schuon probably made more bobnoxious statements than even Jesus or Petey: “Contemporary man, in spite of his being marked by certain experiences due to the senescence of humanity, is spiritually soft and ineffective and intellectually ready to commit every possible betrayal, which will seem to him as summits of intelligence.... In a general way, the man of the ‘last days’ is a blunted creature, and the best proof of this is that the only ‘dynamism’ of which he is still capable is that which tends downwards, and which is no more than a passivity taking advantage of cosmic gravity; it is the agitation of a man who lets himself be carried away by a torrent and who imagines that he is creating this torrent himself by his agitation.”

What a mean thing to say! I'm telling my lama!

Needless to say, you do not want a teacher who needs students, any more than you want a therapist who needs patients. One of the worst vibes you can send to a child is that you need them in the way they need you. The child needs to orient himself around someone who is not like him. Whatever his limitations, my father was at least a rock -- and the spiritual, which is to say, vertical, head of the house, which is far, far preferable to so many modern fathers who try to be on the same level as their children. The one doesn't exclude the other, but in a way it does, because a man can never truly unknow what he knows, assuming he knows anything useful.

"Bob is a man on the ascent, but he is not yet playing in the majors." Although I understand what the writer means by this, it is nevertheless a meaningless statement to me. My only concern is that I am actually playing baseball and not, say, soccer. I hope and pray that there are people who play better than I do, just as I assume there are people who play worse. Again, I don't give much thought to the latter, because there is a league for everyone -- little league, pony league, colt league, American Legion -- and you will rise from league to league in the natural course of events.

I personally made it up to colt league, but met my match the first time I batted against an American Legion pitcher. First of all, he looked very serious, therefore a bit intimidating. The pitch sailed at my head, but as I sat sprawled in the dirt a skipped hearbeat later, I learned from the umpire that the pitch had been a strike. In other words, the pitch started at the blessed Gagdad dome, but then darted over the plate -- from midnight to six, inside corner. This was the first time I learned that a curveball can be thrown with such demonic spin that you can actually hear it -- sort of like a mosquito buzzing around your ear. At least I thought I heard it. Maybe it was just the blood rising to my head.

That was the end of the line for me. However, I bided my time, nourishing a secret hope that I would one day return to the field, exact my vengeance, and triumph over these bullies. I didn't play any baseball, but I did stay in shape, waiting for the day I turned 40, in order to join one of those "over 40" leagues. You know, bunch of out of shape old geezers. Yes, the Gagdad frame is slender, but trust me, like Barney Fife, it is all muscle, my friends. Or at least gristle. Long story short, it was even worse. Why? Because these guys were just like me, waiting for the day that they could be the big fish, albeit in a smaller pond, and exercise the old libido dominandi.

So, what is my point? Have I gotten sidetracked again?

I suppose it is this: if you don't like my pitching, find another league. It is a natural reaction to think that the pitcher must be angry to knock you off the plate, but it's just business. There are no hard feelings involved at all. And in fact, he's doing you a favor, for evolution is a function of adversity. You won't get better if he comes down to your level.

And if you prefer the big fat slow-pitch softballs of the Dalai Lama, go for it. I have nothing against softball. Coons play it all the time, except in our case, we keep a keg at second base in order to at least make it a challenge.

88 Comments:

Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

"I suppose it is this: if you don't like my pitching, find another league. It is a natural reaction to think that the pitcher must be angry to knock you off the plate, but it's just business. There are no hard feelings involved at all. And in fact, he's doing you a favor, for evolution is a function of adversity. You won't get better if he comes down to your level."

B'ob-
You're the yoga bear-a of Coonball.
The OM-father of gno. Ow!

No designated hitters at the OC.

4/16/2007 08:20:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

"In this regard, intelligence is no defense whatsoever, so never assume -- as many trolls seem to do -- that my arguments are ever based on some version of "I'm smarter or more clever than you," much less that I am supposedly "handy with words." "

Yep. Smart people (who are usually referred to as Intelligent), not surprisingly, tend to analyze - to separate and focus in on parts. It takes more, to remember not only to put the pieces back together, but that you never really dissassembled them in the first place. The Whole, the One Cosmos, is always there, and if you lose sight of that, then you get... to paraphrase that wonderful general in louisiana "Stuck on ssssmart!"

4/16/2007 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

"Again, I don't give much thought to the latter, because there is a league for everyone -- little league, pony league, colt league, American Legion..."

For the trolls there's 20,000 leagues under the sea.

4/16/2007 08:36:00 AM  
Anonymous late convert said...

Dalai Llama (sic)...

Sheesh ... and here I was, thinking that PQ had misspelled "Dolly."

4/16/2007 08:40:00 AM  
Anonymous pissquatomy said...

This troll loves you, Bob. And that's why I threw you a hard pitch last night. You hit it out of the park--

I won't be trolling for awhile, just reading. But, one aspect of my "pitch" that you didn't touch upon was the role of Petey and of Mysticism in your spiritual life.

Don't you want to get deeper into Petey (or he into you?) Wouldn't it be cool to be Gagpete Bob or Petedad Bob 24/7?

I intuit Petey to be the sharpest blade in in your evolutionary pocket-knife, and I would like to read what happens when you use him more.

But then again, as you say, if I don't like your pitching I should join a different league. But I say, it never hurts to ask.

4/16/2007 09:17:00 AM  
Blogger juliec said...

Okay, this is completely off-topic, but I had to share.

Lileks has a link to a website called Finetune that lets you pick a playlist of 45 songs that you can add to your blog so people can listen to your music. The player is controlled by whoever is viewing your site; it doesn't start automatically, so no unexpected or unappreciated noise starts unless you hit "play." If you want to see what it's like, check out today's Bleat for a working example.

Anyway, I thought this might be a handy little gadget for the coonsmosphere.

4/16/2007 09:29:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Note to self re:managing to safely make it to the comment section is no reason to assume you are safe from Involuntary Spastic Spewage - remember to be particularly cautious reading comments by USS Ben USN (ret), he is a carrier of ISS, case in point:
"For the trolls there's 20,000 leagues under the sea."

Also remember to keep paper towel stash stocked.

That is all.

4/16/2007 09:45:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Gagdad, perhaps to satisfy your mystically deprived trolls, one of us could cook you up an animated spooky ghost .gif to swoop and 'wooo about the main page... seems like they need to see something to satisfy their itch, what with thoughts being unable to make it past the troll skull defenses....

4/16/2007 09:58:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

After hearing certain speculations as to the Dalai Lama's less-than-spiritual motivations in agitating for Tibetan freedom, I haven't been able to look at the old fellow in the same light.

4/16/2007 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger MizzE said...

> > > I am grateful every day that there are fixed stars by whose light I am able to navigate my life. < < <

Amen to that.

Color me 'map challenged', but I don't think the samskaries are on the same Enchanted Road to OZ that Dorothy Gale of Kansas, The Shaggy Man, Button Bright, and Polychrome the Rainbow's Daughter traveled.

wv: eeetd - yea, I did that

4/16/2007 11:03:00 AM  
Blogger Smoov said...

Recently we had a conversation about evil. Today we live it.

4/16/2007 11:05:00 AM  
Anonymous None The Wiser said...

Ever since I saw "Kundun" - the 1997 film based on the life and writings of the 14th Dalai Lama – I pretty much lost all respect for his “holiness.” At the end of the movie we are told that the Dalai Lama still lives in exile - and I found myself saying out loud (to the TV) "So what?" If he wasn't willing to stay and FIGHT for what was rightfully his, why should anyone else? I’d love to host a double feature of “Kundun” and “Braveheart” back-to-back with the Dalai Lama himself in attendance. Then I would turn to him and say: “See? Scotland is still Scotland. Tibet is part of China. And whose fault do you suppose that is?”

Of course, if the Dalai Lama STILL refused to take any responsibility for the negligence of his own pacifism, I’d probably flip out and try to knock some sense into him with a clue-bat, and then everyone’s evening would be ruined. But don’t miss the scene near the end of “Kundun” where we see his “holiness” standing in a sea of bloodied Tibetan corpses and Lama’s stoic voiceover assures us: “Oh well, they’re all going to be reincarnated again anyway. No biggie.”

Ah, screw it. Who am I trying to kid? I hate the Dalai Lama. I hope he chokes on a muffin and comes back as sewer rat!

4/16/2007 11:06:00 AM  
Blogger juliec said...

Smoov, Indeed.
I only just went to Drudge a few minutes ago.
Time to pray for a whole lot of people, I think.

4/16/2007 11:24:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

None The Wiser said "I hope he chokes on a muffin and comes back as sewer rat!"

One of the more unique curses I've ever heard.

4/16/2007 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

OMG - just realized what Smoov & JulieC were refering to at Virginia Tech... soul shuddering, absolutely Soul Shuddering.

4/16/2007 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

utterly vicious. Naturally we don't have details yet on the killer... speculation abounds, no doubt.

4/16/2007 11:54:00 AM  
Blogger MizzE said...

This is grim business and must be terrible for the families. Waiting to hear verified facts.

4/16/2007 12:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Jenny said...

I'm with you Bob. And people who denigrate your powers as "mystic" don't realize you have no interest in being anyone's mystic - but to simply find and tell the truth.

There's nothing mystical about it. Mystical is just another word for shallow bullshit.

4/16/2007 12:14:00 PM  
Blogger MizzE said...

VA Tech official praised defeat of student self-defense proposal in 2006

4/16/2007 12:26:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

By the number of shots fired, I would predict it was completely pre-meditated (over a period of time) and not simply a crime of passion...

But, the police will give a better report no doubt.

4/16/2007 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger MizzE said...

Wikipedia is covering the worst mass shooting in American history. It is surpassing the Luby's massacre of 1991, which saw 24 deaths and in which
my vice-principal at Meadows School was killed.

4/16/2007 12:54:00 PM  
Blogger MizzE said...

As a direct result of the Luby's Cafeteria massacre, in 1995 Texas lawmakers, led by Suzanna Gratia Hupp (whose parents were both killed in the massacre), passed a law over the veto of former Governor Ann Richards that allowed Texas citizens to obtain a concealed carry handgun permit in part as a reaction against the massacre.

I don't carry a concealed weapon, but I have several in the house. I learned how to swim at age 4, and I earned my sharpshooter medal at age 10. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

4/16/2007 01:03:00 PM  
Anonymous looptloop said...

“A number of trolls have criticized what they perceive as a lack of compassion on my part, or maybe even whole” … “But I've thought about this, and there is no way to do it in the gentle and maternal way that these wimps demand.”

It’s quite a coincidence that a certain Robert Godwin has lit up the letters to the editor board in the recent copy of WIE. It appears that some of the trolls are desperately trying to find a way to justify their agitation, whining until they get that motherly pat on the head.

4/16/2007 01:16:00 PM  
Blogger juliec said...

Mizze,
Indeed. I've seen it sadly noted in several places today that the campus was a no gun zone, which effectively meant that all of the law-abiding citizens on campus were sitting ducks, so to speak.
Such a horrible, senseless tragedy.

4/16/2007 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Looploop:

Yes, they apparently want to integrate everything except for classical liberalism.

4/16/2007 01:25:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

I think not really a "senseless" tragedy, Juliec, in that evil has a purpose, which is to reduce order to blind chaos.

I had horrible dreams last night, not predictive per se, just dreams of chaos and encroaching evil.

4/16/2007 02:06:00 PM  
Blogger juliec said...

I get your point, Will. Such things are senseless to me, inasmuch as I can't imagine the mindset required to perpetrate such an act, but a more accurate description might be a despicable act of depravity. I don't even know that it can rightly be called a tragedy, since tragic often implies something accidental.

I suppose I used those words because deep down, I hate to acknowledge even now that such evil really and truly does exist.

4/16/2007 02:49:00 PM  
Anonymous walt said...

Kind of awkward, commenting on today's post, with such Dark News hovering around. But my tendency to think "on the other hand" pesters me to do it...

Bob mentioned that, "I have had the unenviable task of rereading my book...It is a jarring experience, because parts of the book no longer reflect who I have become in the interim..."

But consider the alternative: if you re-view your own stuff, and feel warm, and comfortable, and even a little dreamy, in a sentimental sort of way... why, you might conclude that you had said it all, reached some sort of completion - or "worse," if you know what I mean.

If your growth torments you, and you clearly sense that you can say it all even better, and that perhaps YOU MUST, then just maybe we'll all be discussing Vol 2 a year from now.

Somebody or other said, "Evolution is a function of adversity."

4/16/2007 04:43:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

axwbmJuliec, fact is I *can* imagine the mindset it takes to commit such an act. To be honest, I think we all have to eventually recognize that, as human beings, we are capable of the greatest evil - which is to say that we, as human beings, are capable of becoming truly divine. And if we are to live seriously, we must recognize that these are the only two options we have: complete evil or complete good.

It has occurred to me that if in the long history of humankind there had only been one serial killer, then all of us are potential serial killers.

Similarly, if there has only been one Christ in the long history of humankind, then each of us has the potential to become truly Christ-like.

4/16/2007 05:24:00 PM  
Anonymous USS Ben said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bath_School_disaster

1927-My Grandfather was a Michigan State Trooper, and responded to the worst school massacre in US history.

He spoke little about the details, for obvious reasons.
I can only imagine (and not for long) how a 21 year old Cop would process an evil like that.

Or like the one that happened today.

I'm all for our Constitutional right to own and carry weapons.

4/16/2007 05:57:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

Walt-
You are right. Heck, when I read some of my early posts, they seem so...immature.

4/16/2007 06:05:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

Will said-
"And if we are to live seriously, we must recognize that these are the only two options we have: complete evil or complete good."

Absolutely!
We are capable of both. What we choose to be is critical not only to ourselves but to everyone around us.

4/16/2007 06:08:00 PM  
Anonymous joan of argghh! said...

How did I miss this clarion from Bob's comment-post yesterday?

There is nothing noble, moral, or praiseworthy about pacifism, for it simply rolls out the red carpet for the wicked to annihilate the decent.

"Blessed be the LORD my strength which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight" if only on the keyboard.

4/16/2007 06:25:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

MizzE said...
VA Tech official praised defeat of student self-defense proposal in 2006.

The leftists who force their denial and pacifism (defenselessness) on others is just as evil as the murderer at VA Tech.
Worse, really.

Because denying millions of people their Sacred and Constitutional right to protect their loved ones, neighbors and fellow man results in aiding the murderers among us.
Like opening the door to evil and inviting it in.

4/16/2007 06:27:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

Hey Joan-
You said it better than I (and with fewer words).

4/16/2007 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Did everyone notice the new Coony Tune icon in the sidebar? Thanks to Julie and Lileks, we now have a Coon soundtrack programmed for your listening pleasure. It's random, but I think you'll find a few interesting surprises programmed in there.

4/16/2007 06:42:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

That's cool Bob.
I can even hear about 5 seconds at a time with dial-up.
5 seconds of good music!

Excellent find, Juliec!

WV: osong (honest!)

4/16/2007 07:05:00 PM  
Anonymous walt said...

Works great! Same as Ben's, 5 second clips. Now I'll have some idea what y'all are yappin' about!

4/16/2007 07:19:00 PM  
Anonymous uss ben said...

The price of living in the wilderness Walt.
We have to rough it. :^)

4/16/2007 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

The selection at finetune is just amazing -- I larded my picks with some obscure alternate mixes of songs with which you are no doubt familiar....

4/16/2007 08:07:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Bob,

Got a late start om reading the blog today due to some unfinished business with Uncle Sam.
All I have say about todays offering is............. cool.

4/16/2007 08:30:00 PM  
Blogger Smoov said...

Cooney Tunes is great!

Can KOON FM 94.1 be far behind?

4/16/2007 08:54:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

There is nothing noble, moral, or praiseworthy about pacifism, for it simply rolls out the red carpet for the wicked to annihilate the decent.

"I think not really a "senseless" tragedy, Juliec, in that evil has a purpose, which is to reduce order to blind chaos."

"Because denying millions of people their Sacred and Constitutional right to protect their loved ones, neighbors and fellow man results in aiding the murderers among us.
Like opening the door to evil and inviting it in."


Opening french doors - "Come in Count... would you like a drink?"

"I don't drink... wine"

4/16/2007 08:56:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

The Beach Boys "Sloop John B"

ahhh. That helps.

4/16/2007 08:59:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Yes, just the backing track from the Pet Sounds box set. The bass player -- who is awesome --was a woman named Carol Kane. You have to hear it on a big stereo for the full effect, but with the vocals removed you can really pick out the different parts. A lot going on.... I also programmed some Beach Boy tracks with the vocals only. In fact, a Temptations song with the vocals only, and a Marvin Gaye song with only the backing track.....

4/16/2007 09:14:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

By the way, if you like the song you're hearing, you have to open a new window to comment, or else it cuts off the song and reshuffles....

4/16/2007 09:15:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Sounding pretty clear through the sys eq & headphones... got the zombies now - do we all hear the same songs?

Very cool - big tail wiggle to JulieC.

" if you like the song you're hearing, you have to open a new window to comment"

Or a new tab, if you've got the latest IE.

4/16/2007 09:33:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

No, I think it's random for everyone...

4/16/2007 09:38:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Sleepy time -- in-law swarm tomorrow -- must be rested....

4/16/2007 09:44:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

nity-nite coons, don't let the Beelzebub's bite.

4/16/2007 09:47:00 PM  
Anonymous wild, wild west said...

I recommend all raccoons go armed. A small, light handgun should be kept on the person while in public.

Never mind the "carry laws" because nobody will know your have a gun, unless you have to shoot it, in which case your going to be in a world of legal trouble no matter what.

As deputies of O, we should have the deadly force option about our persons. It is a duty to God and to the world.

So get to it. Buy, load, pack. A Kel-tec PAT-9 weights only about 11 ounces fully loaded.

4/16/2007 10:23:00 PM  
Anonymous friendly troll said...

Once again, the Raccoon Definition of a Troll: Anyone who disagrees with Bob.

Isn't there any room for disagreement here? Divergent voice? Or is it an "You're either with us or against us" mentality, ala George W Bush and the rest of the neo-medieval consciousness level?

Bob, you shouldn't listen to your friends--they have the same blind-spots you do.

4/16/2007 10:34:00 PM  
Anonymous in other words... said...

great post and comments...thnx!

4/16/2007 10:35:00 PM  
Anonymous sarah b. said...

Wild,

Your ideas certainly are the antithesis of progress(ivism).
The gun free zones are working out just fine thank you!

4/16/2007 10:44:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Walt,

See how the "law" works? ^

4/16/2007 10:49:00 PM  
Blogger juliec said...

I'm glad you guys liked the Finetunes! I was listening to the coony tunes earlier today - an interesting mix. I had to laugh when Scott Walker came of with Girls & Dogs :)

Too bad it won't work on my blog, though.

Walt, I do get what you're saying. There was a time, not so long ago, when I was better at "understanding" what might go on in the heads of people willing or driven to commit such atrocities; I grew up literally in the same neighborhood as the Green River Murderer, and my Mom was in a park on the same day Ted Bundy abducted one of his victims. I acknowledge that we are all capable of great good and great evil; these days, though, my mind simply doesn't want to "empathize" with the great evil.

4/16/2007 11:04:00 PM  
Anonymous USS Ben said...

Friendly troll said:
"Isn't there any room for disagreement here?"

Obviously. You're disagreeing aren't you?
Are you through trashing your room yet?

4/17/2007 02:07:00 AM  
Anonymous USS Ben said...

Van-
Er, um, sorry about that.
I had an outbreak of ISS recently.
But I was trying to be serious.
Know what I mean Verne?

4/17/2007 02:12:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seperation of Church and State is what will save Societies and will guarantee Democracy.

The Dalai Lama is more than a spiritual leader. He was the Head of State.

That's were the system failed. Especially when its own army was weak and outnumbered by the invaders.

Whether a philosophy is truly pacifist or on the contrary, in its true essence, tyrannical (Koran), History has shown that no Religious Institution should create our Laws, nor govern the people. But Help, Inspire, Free, Comfort. That's when Beauty will Shine. And Justice be Served.

That's my understanding of America's success. The perfect place of God is not to be found inside the Churches, but on the US Dollar bill!! A well deserved sacred place. Not an empty symbol.

"In God We Trust"

God means Liberty, courage and Freedom. Can't be reduced to men's Rules and Restrictions, Fear or Slavery.

Nowhere on earth, there is this sense of Freedom and Liberty than in America.

Money is higher than churches, higher than Governments, higher than (conditional) Love. She is Your Detached Friend.

Modern Democracies couldn't be created before its appearance. PRINT. Liberty/Succes accessible to all.

Exposure, Conquest and exchanges is what has guaranteed the growth and riches of Europe. Even the Muslim Conquest has brought a Golden Age to their society. Was it Islam or the simple law of exposure and openness. Even if thru conquest and submission. For a while they did what Europe has been doing forever and it did serve them well.

There is more danger in the spread of Socialist ideas in my opinion than the absence of God. Although more generally the two goes together. But religious people scare me as much. Fondamentalists can be very square and make the wrong choice equally. I say Give Power To MONEY. MONEY EARNED BY YOUR OWN SWEAT.

It's easy to be generous when you feel rich and free. When your heart is happy. Socialist laws creates more anger, envy, laziness, jealousy and selfishness. And more bigotry too. It rimes with nationalist. Something Europeans haven't found out yet.

Anyway, that's what I believe. And I am a huge Jesus fan. But only the association of Jesus and Rock and Roll makes sense to me.

The Jesus of the Vatican etc, not much.

I am truly sorry for disturbing you with my so many assertions,

dreamer.

And I promise, that was my last post; hopefully.

4/17/2007 03:17:00 AM  
Anonymous USS Ben said...

Dreamer-

4/17/2007 03:35:00 AM  
Anonymous walt said...

Hoarhey -

Yes indeed. And I am One with The Law.

4/17/2007 03:52:00 AM  
Anonymous coonpup said...

Even "Pissquatomy" should be able to enjoy that meal you served.

It was simply delectable!

4/17/2007 04:57:00 AM  
Blogger Smoov said...

anonymous:

I say Give Power To MONEY. MONEY EARNED BY YOUR OWN SWEAT.

Yeah. Hmm. I guess I pretty much fit that definition, what with being a successful corporate entrepreneur and all. I can tell you that having lots of money has little to do with the kind of spiritual enlightenment discussed here at OC. Contrary to what leftoids will tell you, wealth is not a barrier to spiritual growth--much less an "evil", but worshipping Mammon as you apparently are wont to do is in no way going to help you come to know the Absolute.

Objectivism is pretty thin gruel, as you'll find out soon enough when you graduate from high school and have some time to mature a bit.

4/17/2007 05:22:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Annonymous,
Money is not the source, but an effect, of people having the freedom to conduct their lives as they see fit. Government should not be involved in either their churches nor their banks, and for similiar reasons.

A proper Government is one based on Laws for the purpose of defending the Individual Rights of it's people. If the people are not a moral people, the Government made up of them will respect neither church, nor bank, or Individual Rights.

Truth is the root which morality must grow from, the center point of the horizontal and vertical; the uniter of 2+2=4, Individual Rights, and I Am that I Am. Morality must be based on Truth, and only that will lead towards The Good, The Beautiful and The True, within and without.

If your morality is based upon an effect, money, it will be unbalanced, wrong headed, and lead to the fall of all. If you somehow got the idea that money was the source of good, rather than a reflection of it from Ayn Rand, you misread her. Try again.

The rest of your assertions are too confused to defuse - nearly as bad as Wild West's. Good luck.

4/17/2007 05:43:00 AM  
Anonymous dilys said...

dreamer-who-can't-spell "separation":

One hopes you're very, very young, a kind of mean&narrow Alex Keaton, and will keep your eyes open. At least you haven't been taken hostage by what Dr. Sanity calls the Narcissism of Idealism. In fact, I suspect you are in part in reaction against its contagion.

As smoov says, the ability to get and spend is valuable, but it's only the beginning. Out of proportion, it is poison. And so is judging things by whether they're "square." Neither money nor cool will equip you for an abundant, resonant life. And more.

Leap levels by pondering this man. St. Maximilian Kolbe, welcome home your noble kin.

4/17/2007 06:02:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Smoov said "I can tell you that having lots of money has little to do with the kind of spiritual enlightenment discussed here at OC."

Little to do, as opposed to conflicts with...?

"wealth is not a barrier to spiritual growth--much less an "evil""

Yep.

"Objectivism is pretty thin gruel"

Hmm... incomplete yes, but not thin. Well understood, not just story gleanings, it is entirely supportive... insists on, One Truth at the core of all understanding. Also it seeks the Good, the Beautiful and the True... it just forgets to look up and inwardly outwards for it.

4/17/2007 06:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Call me 'conservative punk' - who listen essentially to Jazz.

Don't take me lightly.

I can't talk so well, but I can read your mind. God made me painter, not writer.

I was trying to express Pop Art ideas. The essence of America. The only place on earth where money is not synonymous with dirt but Freedom, Liberty and Joy. Nothing leftist about it.

Now please ignore me, as I always say. It never works well to hear your answer.

dreamer.

4/17/2007 06:56:00 AM  
Blogger Smoov said...

van:

In my experience with Objectivists (I encounter a lot of them among high-powered capitalists) I have found them to be overwhelmingly atheistic. Many of them are militantly so, and many others are that brand of atheist which is best summed up as spiritually autistic--constitutionally unable to appercieve the Divine.

There may be some good in objectivism, but for me it is overshadowed by the denial of the Divine.

4/17/2007 08:01:00 AM  
Anonymous ximeze said...

Smoov said: "...as you'll find out soon enough when you graduate from high school and have some time to mature a bit"

Snortslobberwipesnort. Nice going smoov. Good thing I had already put the java down & swallowed.....

4/17/2007 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Smoov,
Oh there's no doubt that what you say is the intended and official Objectivist conclusion.

But it's a bit like the ultimate Geometricians, having discovered and defined all conceivable proofs then concluding 'that's it - there's no higher mathematics than what we've found or to be found'.

Calculous anyone?

I never bought into the anti-divine part, anti-irrational sure, but anti-divine... seemed a bit like saying you were anti-martian - if you don't think there is anything to it, you dismiss it, you don't dwell on it.

I think in Objectivist language, when it comes to issues of the divine, their approach and method is out of context. They approach it on the literalist/fundie/athiest level and say "Talking snake? Nah, that's nutty talk. Case closed."

They (the ones who know what they're talking about anyway, Binswanger, Piekoff...) believe in the non-materialistic existence of Man's soul... they just believe that it starts and ends with birth & death and at no time reaches beyond the skinwall. Life somehow happened, it's here, there's nothing more to be known or sought, case closed.

I guess the short answer is that the Philosophy doesn't contradict the divine, only the people's application of it does. When I happened across One Cosmos, I found another context, a way of approaching the talking snake bit, that has fitted right in with all I understood before as an Objectivist.

4/17/2007 08:56:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Anonymous said...
"Don't take me lightly."

Doesn't go so well with
"I can't talk so well, but I can read your mind"

and

"I was trying to express Pop Art ideas.I was trying to express Pop Art ideas. The essence of America."

"Don't take me lightly."? Sorry, you don't leave much of an alternative. Your essense needs a bit more distilling.

4/17/2007 09:01:00 AM  
Anonymous anonymous for a dreamer said...

Van,
Why are you so angry?

What good is served except to...what? Further cement your status as a "heavyweight regular" on a blog site?

Balance out your earlier kindness to a troll?

Further incite ire in "dreamer", leading perhaps to some insight?

You are no better than the rank and file trolls you despise, despite your smarts, when you engage in this juvenile one-upsmanship. Get a clue. And let the guy have his say.

Once again: why are you so angry?

4/17/2007 09:45:00 AM  
Anonymous ximeze said...

Van: I have a question re this discussion with Smoov - need to say first I know little about Objectivism & never could get past more than a couple of pages of Rand before getting bored & tossing it aside in favor of something interesting, like Art History or a stack of Cookbooks.

The question comes from this:

"They believe in the non-materialistic existence of Man's soul... they just believe that it starts and ends with birth & death and at no time reaches beyond the skinwall. Life somehow happened, it's here, there's nothing more to be known or sought, case closed."

Sounds as tho they accept 'soul' or 'an immaterial something' in Man, but don't account for a source - ie O. Isn't that what Smoov was pointing out?

Perhaps I'm extrapolating improperly, but a 'soul' unconnected to Something Bigger, if you will, or a Cosmic Plan (etc), strikes me as closer to the A-hole metaphor, ie: everybody has one, no big deal.

4/17/2007 09:57:00 AM  
Anonymous ximeze said...

Van:
Never mind the above. Reread your 8:56 & you were quite clear. I just didn't get it on the first pass.

4/17/2007 10:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I say: a leftist believer wont be a very good leader. It's not enough to say I believe in Jesus Christ to end up in Heaven. Which Christ? I don't deny people the right to go to church. I say: only once Jesus reached the shores of America, did He become Real and truly Free. Out of the Church, back where he belonged, the Streets. And the American Constitution and the Army to Protect Him. Doesn't mean He had to deny His GOD.

Now if you want to misuse my own words against me, do it, but nobody will be fooled.

It will get you nowhere. Only "while you were judging me, I was judging you".

I was not born American. I thought it was clear. If I was such a narcissist, how come did you miss all the informations about me?

Van: I know you have problems understanding Picasso and Jackson Pollock. Maybe you are not yet an expert in every aspect of life. That's all right. Someone else once was criticizing Andy Warhol's Art. To understand God IS to understand ART. To be able to differentiate Art from its Imitation. The day people will truly understand Warhol's Art, that's the day they would have understood Life, Beauty, Universal Truths, America. That's the POP ART reference I was making. I am a follower of that same school. Although my work is abstract and with true paint... I couldn't be there if I was not such a Lover of America; without deeply understanding America's Values, I couldn't paint like a true Pop Artist. And deserve the title. You'll hear from me one day in the news.

The reason I crashed here at OC was only to give you a previous taste of what you will one day hear elsewhere. My own way to share and test at the same time my potential Friends and Allies. If you reject me, I wont miss you. I don't need phoney compliments.

And I don't need to flatter no one to succeed, thank God.

dreamer

Anonymous, thanx. I talk like a guy but I am a Lady.

4/17/2007 10:16:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

anonymous for a dreamer said...
"Van, Why are you so angry?"

Not angry - laughing.

4/17/2007 12:36:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Anonymous said...

"Now if you want to misuse my own words against me, do it, but nobody will be fooled.
"
I honestly have no idea what the words prior to this sentence meant.

"narcissist, how come did you miss all the informations about me?"
Aside from my not mentioning anything about narcissist's - what are you talking about? Maybe this is just a language problem you're having. Hope so.

"Maybe you are not yet an expert in every aspect of life."
Got that one right.

"The day people will truly understand Warhol's Art, that's the day they would have understood Life, Beauty, Universal Truths, America."
Have you read what Warhol said about his 'art'? He intended nothing to do with upholding 'Life, Beauty, Universal Truths, America'. The critics who fawned over him intended nothing of the sort either.

I look at art as something that concretizes the deepest metaphysical beliefs of the artist. It does so with imagery, mood, symmetry and clarity of line. For me, it should itself be a work of beauty, even in portraying the ugly, such as with Reubens's Head of Medusa. There is a large amount of subjectivity to the art we, as individuals, are drawn to, to what you consider Art, what strikes you as beautiful. I much prefer Bouguereau to Monet, but then out of left field for some strange and odd reason Van Gogh nearly transfixes me whenever I gaze on his paintings. I can't find a speck of beauty or value in Pollack. If you manage to, that's your business not mine.

"And I don't need to flatter no one to succeed, thank God."
Very true. You also don't need everyone to agree with you, or to take offense with those who don't. I do wish you the best.

4/17/2007 01:11:00 PM  
Anonymous anonymous for a dreamer said...

Van said,

"Not angry, laughing."

Boy you are one scary nazi, hoss. We could'a used a few more good men like you at Abu Graib, strippin em for the gipper.

Did you read Bob's post, or just skim it? Bob explains that it isn't fair to compare himself to an enlightened being, then sets about comparing himself to an enlightened being. He remarks how Aurobindo and Schuon both took a heavy hand when it came to followers, then excuses himself for doing the same. That's comparison, by the way. But at least it's Bob doing it. Yes, Aurobindo picks up a sword now and then. Jesus gets rowdy. A spiritul master should know how to enforce discipline when training a disciple. But you, picking fights with casual commenters, not even decent trolls, for some reason known only to yourself is getting RREAAALLLY tiresome. It drags down the whole spirit of the blog. Not to mention what it does to you. I can only pray that you are not actually "laughing".

That you are so stupid as to think that "Not angry, laughing." somehow excuses your bad behavior, not even seeing that this admission is even a raunchier character trait, is proof that you ain't Jesus, you ain't Aurobindo or Schuon or bob (not that he would compare, but he does compare, now that L Cohen is gone). You ain't even up to Van on one of his good days.

Laughing? Go laugh somewhere else. It sounds like a jackass braying. I ask again, and it's not rhetorical but it's not something you need to answer in public: What are you so angry about?

4/17/2007 03:07:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

anonymous for a dreamer said...

What are you so angry about?

I took another look back through the comments, and admittedly had I realized dreamers language difference, I would't have thrown in the 'assertions', but the rest stands.

You however... I'm not just laughing, I'm rolling on the floor laughing outloud.

Seriously.

4/17/2007 03:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

heehaw! heehaw! heehaw!

4/17/2007 04:52:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Hey Hey! There ya go Anninymouse! Always better to speak straight from the heart!

4/17/2007 05:17:00 PM  
Anonymous junior said...

Is somebody feeling Braay-ve?

4/17/2007 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Now, now, don't be muleheaded about it.

4/17/2007 07:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fair enough. I'll quit thinking of you as a pompous ass and start thinking of you as Don Quixote.

Hey DonQui! Grab your lance...its a..windbag!

heehaw! heehaw!

4/17/2007 10:27:00 PM  
Anonymous dreamer said...

Since people here lack attention and focus, just to make it clear, my former identity was f-reed (back in december). The reason I chose this new moniker was simply because I didn't want to make it too much about me but more about my ideas (my unfinished business) while it's a good way to test the awareness of your spiritual Friends.

Last time, I was 'invited' to leave prematurely thank to psychoprincess' bulliness. It's funny how van and few others are having their own P2 moment. Maybe finally she did manage to put a curse on some of us.

Anyway, I think this time I have accomplished my goal. I will be proved right or wrong in real life confrontation with all the parties involved. Nothing I can escape from. I welcome that day since Light is my best Ally. Again I am sorry I can not be more clear, but for someone who can't say much, you have to admit, I have been quite open and transparent.

anonymous, thanx again. It's people like you, and Bob, who give me hope, strenght and confidence in believing that the future will be bright, and the world could unite around all that's good, fair and free.

free-d

4/18/2007 03:37:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Anonymous,
Poor BFT.

;-)


(laughing)

4/18/2007 05:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

heehaw!

4/18/2007 05:25:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Tag - you're it!

4/18/2007 12:53:00 PM  

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