Updates from February, 2016 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • hardie karges 11:12 am on February 28, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , smartphone,   

    Zen and the Art of Smartphone Maintenance 

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    Buddhism in Sri Lanka

    For someone to say that they just want the Zen Enlightenment, without all the ‘normal’ Buddhist suffering is like a doctor—or patient—who only wants elective surgery, no cure for the common cold necessary, thank you. Of course that can be done, as thousands of the bored wealthy among us do, the elective surgery and the Zen enlightenment up at the Zen Center up on the hill, BUT: there’s only one problem…

    …that ain’t Buddhism, not really IMHO. It’s hard to have true Buddhism in a Christian country. Twenty Christians practicing Buddhism as a second language will be a very ‘Christian-y’ Buddhism. So that’s more like New Age such-and-such, or Transformational something or other, as American as apple pie a la mode du jour.

    There’s more to Buddhism than meditation, too, which is what Zen specializes in, that and the ‘crazy wisdom’ of unsolvable riddles designed to trick your mind into Enlightenment, the Sudden Enlightenment of stopped thought. That IS the goal of meditation, after all, isn’t it, to stop all thought, all linguistic thought, if only for a little while? I’d say so, though there IS some scuttlebutt about accessing other worlds—yeah, right…. (More …)

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  • hardie karges 12:50 pm on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , ,   

    Fall of America, Act III: Bread, Circuses, Conspiracies and Clowns… 

    So what’s all this (c)rap about ‘Establishment’ candidates, and the notion that D. P. Trump and Bernie Sanders are the desirable anti-Establishment alternatives?

    The Establishment generally denotes a dominant group or elite that holds power or authority in a nation or organization. The Establishment may be a closed social group which selects its own members (as opposed to selection by merit or election) or specific entrenched elite structures, either in government or in specific institutions…

    …In fact, any relatively small class or group of people having control can be referred to as The Establishment; and conversely, in the jargon of sociology, anyone who does not belong to The Establishment may be labelled an “outsider”–Wikipedia

    Got that? No? Well, it’s quite simple, really. It’s all about THEM: (fill in the blank). THEY can be anyone you want, anyone you just love to hate, be it the so-called Establishment, the military-industrial complex (cue rat-a-tat), the secret government (cue ghostly sounds), the Illuminati (remember them?), or you-name-it… See where this is going? Yes: how do you spell C-O-N-S-P-I-R-A-C-Y (Note capital letters)? Now, no one disputes the thousands of little conspiracies that occur everyday, but ‘conspiracy theory’ is all about the Big One: the idea that they’re all connected… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 8:29 am on February 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , secular humanism   

    Secular Humanism? Yeah, right: Gimme Religion, and ASAP… 

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    Buddhist shrine in Sri Lanka

    For better or worse, Bernie, “We’re-All-In-This-Together” is not a religion. Spirituality? Maybe, but I doubt it. Nice try, though. It’s okay to be Jewish, you know. It doesn’t mean anything bad, as long as you’re not a tool of the modern state of Israel. So feel free to clarify that, ASAP, but obscuring your ethnic origins by muddying up religious waters is not helpful…

    So Bernie sounds like a ‘secular humanist’ to me, and not a ‘practicing Jew’. But I’m not interested in politics right now. I’m interested in religion. So is ‘secular humanism’ a religion? Naah, not really. Why not? They’re all just belief systems, aren’t they, ‘secular humanism’ and every religion? So what’s the difference? Does a religion have to have a God? Buddhism doesn’t really have a God, and Islam allows no images of one. Hinduism has loads.  So what’s the difference?

    Short answer: plenty. In fact, secular humanism DOES have a God, and its name is mostly ME. That’s the difference, and that’s the opposite of what religion is all about. Religion is all about being a part of something bigger than you, and secular humanism is all about individuality, and individualism, specifically this individual, and all too often (drum roll here, please): ego.  God help us. (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 9:41 am on February 14, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , ,   

    Buddhism: the Path to Compassion… and Conciliation 

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    Buddhist shrine in Sri Lanka

    Buddhism is well-known for its compassion, but actually: shouldn’t they all be? In fact, yes all religions are pretty equal in that regard, to their own adherents, at least. Christians who rejoice in their style of communion might be surprised at the joy of two Muslims meeting at the unexpected random encounter in some disparate (and not necessarily desperate) country.

    So that’s the challenge, really, then, isn’t it—to expand the umbrella of inclusion, so that people can feel that feeling of brotherhood whenever and wherever and with whomever? Unfortunately it doesn’t always work out that way, as cultural baggage weighs heavily and racial and facial considerations rear their ugly heads in calculated derision… (More …)

     
    • davekingsbury 1:53 pm on February 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      An insightful blend of philosophy and personal experience which hits the nail on the head … I shall remember your phrase ‘umbrella of inclusion’!

  • hardie karges 8:49 am on February 12, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Albert Einstein, gravitational waves, James Joyce, , quantum mechanics, quarks   

    A Quark for Muster Mark with a Side Order of Wavy Gravy… 

    Scientists have come up with a new name for the recently discovered gravitational waves that Einstein theorized more than a hundred years ago: Wavy Gravy. So far there has been no word from Hugh Romney on the subject…

     
  • hardie karges 8:27 am on February 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , comedy, politcs, Stephen Colbert   

    Hot Grilled Bernie Sandwich? 

    Stephen Colbert stole my joke about the BLT community. I want compensation…

     
  • hardie karges 11:19 am on February 7, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , revelations   

    Religion 491: Revelations Now… 

    You know, Billy: we blew it.”–Wyatt (Captain America) to Billy in the movie ‘Easy Rider’, c.1969

    You had one job”– popular ‘post’ on a popular ‘social media’ site in the pre-Collapse Late Anthropocentric Age, called ‘The Book of Faces’. Archaeologists and anthropologists are still trying to determine its significance.

    IMG_1559Those words from ‘Easy Rider’ have probably echoed through your head once every five or ten years if you ever saw the movie and/or happened to have grown up in the The 60’s, and though the meaning may have never been clear then, the meaning is certainly clear now. When all the epitaphs have been written on and all the stories have been told, about our Anthropocentric Age, the verdict is clear: we blew it. We had it all and we blew it. All we had to do was be stewards of the land, watching over and taking care with respect and foresight, and what did we do? We blew it, man…

    Cogito ergo sum was Rene’ Descartes proud take on the human condition. “I think, therefore I am.” In retrospect maybe it should have been: ‘I waste, therefore I am.’ For that is what defines us, our arrogance and our lack of foresight, our taste for blood and our terrible math. We were supposed to go forth and multiply, and instead we went forth and divided—oops! Now here we are wondering what went wrong while we shop for the latest app for our smart-phones and the latest fashion accessories for our hair, without so much as a second thought to any connection between our consumption and our condition… (More …)

     
  • hardie karges 5:25 pm on February 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Democrats, , , ,   

    Big Losers in Iowa: Trump, Polls, and Demo-… 

     US Republican presidential candidate, real estate mogul and TV personality Donald Trump.…crazy, baby, like WOW, brother, like don’t f*ck with my ETERNAL NOW, sister, feeling the Bern and the rising tide, of the coming revolution and time on our side, blows against the empire and folks too proud to beg, quinoa muesli tofu granola and the gluten-free fertilized free-range yolk-free three-minute egg, man…

    So Trump takes his lumps like he planned it that way all the time, but the Big News is that he lost; not that Cruz is any better, for those of us of liberal bent, badly bent but not yet broke, thank you. Cruz is an ignorant moron, too, of course, but he can be beaten (thank you, evangelicals!). The Big Scare for those of us with working cerebellums was that Trump would run the primaries and it (the Republican primaries) would all be over before it really even started, and we Dems would be left to our own best guesses and the vicissitudes of Fate to determine whether we’d live or die, and how and why…

    But that won’t happen now, and by the time Trump’s lost two or three primaries, even if he’s won the same amount, he’ll likely give up, given the odds of losing, because if there’s one thing Trump’s not: it’s a loser; quitter maybe, but not loser. Narratives can always be adjusted and back-filled to mitigate any lack of initial logic, but defeat is hard to finesse and explain away. That, of course, depends on who the Democratic nominee is shaping up to be…

    So why do we Democrats have this death wish that refuses to quit? Why do we insist on being the losers that Repubs portray us as? Call us idealists, call us starry-eyed optimists, call us die-hard revolutionaries, call us conscientious objectors, but mostly… call us for a good time: 867-5309. Okay, so let’s call it idealism. That’s a good narrative. (More …)

     
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