Video Games – our very human desire for escapism

 

2011-09-19-01-19-46.jpg Video Games – our very human desire for escapism

 

I love video games. Ever since playing DUCK HUNT on the (NES) Nintendo 8-bit, I’ve been sold on them with a vengeance. Despite still enjoying them now, as I’ve gotten older I’m starting to see video games with a new perspective. If video games have proven anything to so many people it’s that the fantasy of new experiences trumps reality. Experience demands freedom, and this is a powerful thing, and what a varied and crazy mix of experiences offered in a video game (ones of sufficient decent depth.)

Anyone who knows me, knows I grew up as an avid gamer, and truth games that offer compelling and immersive stories (or huge worlds) compel me the most. Sorry to disappoint anyone, but this won’t be a specific video game review, but perhaps something a bit deeper, so stick with it! As of late I’ve been trying to focus more on increasing my experience points and level with a very important game; the game of EXISTING, I’m giving more credence every day on the idea that REALITY actually trumps FANTASY…but I’ll admit it’s been a hard sell, because the sort of freedom found in so many games is intoxicating; not only the freedom of action, skill and movement, but most intriguing, the freedom from consequence. Most of all, these open-world design games grant us the ability to be totally reckless (even “evil” for a time) – Stealing from and killing people, committing all manner of crimes (think: Watchdogs, Grand Theft Auto, etc.), and we don’t think twice about doing it in these games…well, many of us don’t. (I usually have somewhat of a moral qualm, even though I’ll suppress it often to “experience” what happens next.)

The truth is, if we dig deeper into these video games and their characters, we realize that there is no way (most of us) would choose be those characters at all, even if we were somehow afforded divine power and could make it happen. It’s a fun thought on the surface as we sit there holding a controller, but most people would shy away (and many run away screaming) from so many of the events that occur in games like Watchdogs, Halo, Gears of War, Grand Theft Auto and so many others. We wouldn’t be the heroes featured and controlled on the screen; we would more likely be the innocent passerby being gunned down or ran over by some crazed sociopath collecting “points” or “credits”.

Video Games – our very human desire for escapism

As humans, we are overwhelmingly attracted to what we don’t already have. We want to escape from the common things and try something else…even people who profess to have everything they need, still want something. This is true even in the short term…If it’s too hot, we want it cold. If it’s too cold, we want it hot. If it’s perfectly temperate, we’d like to drink something hot or cold…so these feelings of satisfaction are ALWAYS temporal, and this appears to be ingrained into us. Guilty as charged!

In my own life, being older now, at 37, I’ve come to realize that it’s new experience most people lack in life that leaves discontentment and a longing in the heart; the experience of meeting new people, the experience of going to new places (this is a huge one), and these all creates a deep emptiness in us, demanding to be filled. Some video games fill this void in a very artificial way (for a brief time), but they can’t give a person the long term satisfaction that a life; one better LIVED with REAL EXPERIENCE can provide.

I want to encourage you to start doing exactly this. Find more time to do the things you love, and when possible with the people you care about (yes, even if that’s playing video games), but above all, mix it up and experience new things, force yourself out of habits and patterns of a “typical day”, because we all have a temporary amount of time in this world, and we should make the most of it.

For me, I do this with the dream of granting myself more time to cherish my life by broadening my experience and skills. To grow where otherwise I would stagnate. One way to do this for many of us is to contribute in what small way we can toward others and THEIR experience…always remembering that we have the potential to leave a legacy behind for those we love when it’s time to check out…

Do you also want more time to do the things that matter to you “out there” IN REALITY, or are you content mostly living mostly in fantasies created by other minds? Do you live your life doing the things you hate while only dreaming of what you love? Share your thoughts below.

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Business OR Virtue? No, they must be one and the same.

 

Principles Matter Most, principles in business, business tips, business ethics, business, virtue

Principles Matter Most

  CREDIT TO: principlesmattermost.com – for the image!


Business OR Virtue?

Are you grounding your business with a principled approach? Don’t roll your eyes…is this even a consideration for you in the race to acquire more and more $$$$? Does the well-being of those that depend on your leadership and your example to prosper really matter to you? (By ‘really’, I mean beyond what it profits you financially?) Does providing a quality product or service that gives a fair and reasonable chance of giving them success make you happy for more reasons than your commissions, residuals or increased advertising? Have you cultivated enough compassion in your heart for others by learning to truly appreciate and value what those relationships can give to you in intangible commodities, in the essence of a smile, a handshake, a hug, or even tears?

If your answer to any of the above questions is NO, then you are losing far more than money and you are failing. You are losing something more important and more vital to your own growth than the amount of dollars you can pile up in a bank account, you are losing what it means to be human.  This is more than a matter of business ethics, it’s a matter of your own virtue, how that affects your relationships and your life overall.

You see, Milton was really on to something profound when he wrote that “No man is an island” and the same is true in business as it is with any relationship. This doesn’t mean everyone you associate yourself with, or interact with should be afforded the same honored position of a close friend or family member in your life (that’s impossible), but it does mean that everyone who shows that they are serious, that they have some degree of integrity and motivation and sincerity should be granted the same POTENTIAL to be in the lofty positions in your life. EVERYONE.

Will everyone that you come across in your business make it? Of course not…and we can breathe a huge sigh of relief.  Is that mean-spirited and contradictory?…NO! We simply can’t be a friend or even a close acquaintance of everyone. (Even the most altruistic among us accepts this or perishes) – This is true for two reasons:

1.) Before a person can reach out more and more with compassion, that person must focus real effort on oneself first…they must develop the habits that make them successful and often-times get dragged in the mud of life a few times (alone!) in the process, and by success I don’t mean merely financial success, I don’t mean merely success in a business, I’m talking much deeper here. Ask yourself: If you removed all money and all business and all work from your life, (and still could survive) what would you really have left? Would you stand up and say you were proud of what remained, or would you slink to the nearest shadow to conceal yourself?

2.) Real growth and success requires some sacrifice (including some failure) and sometimes that comes in the form of taking time away from the things you enjoy most or even people you love, but always with understanding that you have the correct spirit and motivation for doing so… it requires patience and dedication to uphold a higher standard; one that you’ve set for yourself, one that you aren’t about to relinquish for anything. I’ve come to understand on a deeper level that I want to grow my business and adopt the most valuable traits in myself that promote it, not for the potential only of being filthy stinking rich (I mean who wouldn’t enjoy that?) but rather, because I know these things will empower me to accomplish what I truly want and need: more free time to be with the people I love (my wife, daughter, mom, family & friends) and to improve their quality of life in the process; and simply having more time OVERALL to experience things that matter more in the end. Having more money generally means having more time to ENJOY THIS LIFE, not merely SURVIVE through it.

Are you working for your own dream OR for someone else’s dream?

If you believe it doesn’t matter which, just ask yourself:  Am I empowering my own principles and enriching my own life in what I do, or am I just paying some bills and wasting time whenever possible and only LIVING on the weekends/time-off? I’ve spend many years of my life doing the latter, but my mindset has changed and I’m working toward more independence in my life now! More posts to come as I continue to share my epic journey to greater success in LIVING, thanks as always for reading my posts! I hope this has given someone out there something to think about, as it’s something I think about quite OFTEN.

I started a Squidoo page about: Atheism, Agnosticism and the rationality (or not) of maintaining a belief in God.

Atheism, Agnosticism and belief in God

For some arguments/articles I’ve written, with the primary focus being on the theme of the rationality (or ‘lack’ from my perspective) of Atheism and it’s modern variant (New Atheist) claims of intellectual superiority, please see my Squidoo page here:
http://arts-humanities.squidoo.com/sensiblebelief

Marriage and my Vows, and what it means to me.

wedding vows
Marriage and my Vows

From John Lennox’s book, ‘God’s Undertaker – Has science buried God?’ – p. 40,41
“Let us imagine that my Aunt Matilda had baked a beautiful cake and we take it along to be analyzed by a group of the world’s top scientists. I, as master of ceremonies, ask them for an explanation of the cake and they go to work. The nutrition scientists will tell us about the number of calories in the cake an its nutritional effect; the biochemists will inform us about the structure of the proteins, fats etc. in the cake; the chemists, about the elements involved and their bonding; the physicists will be able to analyze the cake in terms of fundamental particles; and the mathematicians will no doubt offer us a set of elegant equations to describe the behavior of those particles.

Now that these experts, each in terms of his or her scientific discipline have given us an exhaustive description of the cake, can we say that the cake is completely explained? We have certainly been given a description of how the cake was made and how its various constituent elements relate to each other, but suppose I now ask the assembled group of experts a final question: Why was the cake made? The grin on Aunt Matilda’s face shows she knows the answer, for she made the cake, and she made it for a purpose. But all the nutrition scientists, biochemists, chemists, physicists and mathematicians in the world will not be able to answer the question – and it is no insult to their disciplines to state their incapacity to answer it. Their disciplines, which can cope with questions about the nature and structure of the cake, that is, answering the ‘how’ questions, cannot answer the ‘why’ questions connected with the purpose for which the cake was made. In fact, the only way we shall ever get an answer is if Aunt Matilda reveals it to us. But if she does not disclose the answer to us, the plain fact is that no amount of scientific analysis will enlighten us.”

—–

If there is anything worth learning, it’s that we DO NOT know everything, and no single system of understanding will EVER give us such knowledge. The above example stuck to my mind as I was about to be married, not only as a powerful refutation to the validity of scientism (” the dogmatic endorsement of scientific methodology and the reduction of all knowledge to only that which is measurable”), but I was imagining someone attempting to give such a comprehensive explanation of my love and commitment, laying it all out…in the hopes of removing any spirituality behind it, just trying to make it all physics and biology…just imagine this: A man in a nice suit shows up, a very well educated person who just ran all of the correct tests on the subject, and he’s going to break it all down for me and explain every physical molecule and how they moved and interacted to make this all possible, and the thought made me want to laugh. How much more mysterious, complex and glorious is this human life, and so much more then what we give it credit.

Marichu and I was married on October 5th and we are now a happier couple. Personal Vows were exchanged. Shiny gold rings now adorn us, and I kissed my lovely bride with a mild tipping motion which officially sealed it.

I think about what this all means, these VOWS we give during a wedding in particular…and the first thing that seems obvious about any marriage, (regardless of it’s actual love-content) is that a person gets to have less taxes taken out of their paycheck, as the law recognizes me as a married man (cool, I guess, but not motivating at all to me as a REASON to marry)…beyond the legal ramifications involved in no longer being ‘single’ according to the law, what does this union of two lives really mean? In particular, Why do we humans take the time to give vows at all? Certainly these deep assurances being spoken are already understood at some point during the relationship, in order for it to be agreed that we should be standing there in the first place, getting married, and words can hardly be considered the most reliable and sincere vehicle of human intention (as the saying goes: “put your money where your mouth is”), and not all (I’d guess very few) people cling to HONESTY as an actual Principle..it’s something you “try” to live up to, sure…because like the golden rule, “you treat others as you would have them treat you back”, (but only when the risk is low enough) …certainly for most HONESTLY is not something so important you’d do virtually anything to avoid damaging it, but yet here we are, getting married and speaking the most meaningful words we can bring forth in our life that we have ever spoken (and getting very emotional over them), to that one special person that completes us. We make bold promises about our future, hoping against all odds that our ability to be honest IS seriously valued by our special someone as something more than a pragmatic “best attempt”.

Most people highly regard the sincerity and integrity in others (even those that lack it them-self), and they do so regardless if such things are weighed against any divine judgment that can later make amends of any falsehoods, or by weighing it more tenuously against the opinions of men/women they respect; but there is something about words so wrought (in VOWS) that brings about a very profound trust that as human beings, we can rise above the base animal-physical-mammalian level of merely existing, procreating, evolving, exploiting for gain, etc.. so much so that perhaps even the most adamant materialist among us can for a moment experience something akin to the non-physical (God), something transcending the “random unguided/undirected process of life” that is so blindly (pun-intended) championed by such a purely humanistic person. As humans we enjoy much phenomena that exists beyond mere physicality, these experiences and choices that MAKE us distinctly human are not something any other creature can partake in. Human choices and relationships not driven by a blind mechanical process, but rather a designed, intelligent, intentional one. What OUGHT TO BE (vs. what IS) is not easily decided by those that would demand and insist to measure it with their already intelligently-designed instruments before coming to terms with the answer.

Any methodological human system (science, philosophy, religion, etc) that is divorced from the entire scope of humanity and it’s experiences (and ALL that it includes, EX: that data which falls outside of it’s purview), will never be able to prove or explain my love and my conviction to Marichu on our wedding day, of how much she matters to me, of what this commitment we are making means; forever these things are powerfully subjectively mine and uniquely human. Because I have come to accept there is something higher, something more perfect, something of which my perfection tries to mimic and clearly never WILL match (at least in this life) as a standard for myself, this will motivate me and inspire me to continue to improve myself for her, and for us. Our willingness to make such vows during a ceremony and subject it to the criticisms and evaluation of others, all while existing in a less than stellar level of perfection than the ideals we hope to achieve, acts as a promise to one another (in the most sincere way) that we believe it’s possible to exceed what it means to be human, and any limits the world or others would place upon us in the future; and I believe that level of excellence is worth fighting for.

————

Wedding Vows

these are vows I spoke to Marichu on Oct 5th, 2013, they are what I’m fighting for, and always will:
“How do I express the depth of my heart for you with mere words, to speak so briefly and somehow do it justice? It’s just that I know how easy it is to merely say words of love and commitment, how little effort it takes a person to merely open their mouth and form words, but…

My love, if ever the strength of my words should be lacking, now or years from now; or if my ability to even speak someday be compromised, I vow that my heart would still beat just for you, and as strong as it does right now, standing here, in the witness of God and family, and friends, and I vow to you that it will never fail to find its most sincere expression, in some way, perhaps where words can be discarded as useless or irrelevant, because whether it be in light or darkness, in sunshine or rain; I vow that THIS love will always be for you, and you alone.

Even if the world should crumble around us, I vow that I will commit myself to keeping us both safe in the arms of God, always focused on our joy and passion, always aiming for greater sincerity and truth. My resolve to love you, protect you, keep you, and to cherish you every day of your life is beyond reproach. I vow with not only these words, but also with every deed of my life from this day forward, that I will stay true in my love to you, until my very last breath, and if God would see fit, if He would bless me so abundantly yet again, I will find you even when all the lights go out, to continue loving you beyond death, even beyond time itself.

I have been blessed to learn from a wisdom far, far greater than my own, a profound truth, and that truth is this: that, Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, and it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails, and I vow that our love will never fail.

All of this and so much more I vow to you, my only love. Now, and forever. ”

I love you Marichu!

Music Tracks – Some of my favorite songs using the metaphor of: FIRE

Some of my favorite songs using the metaphor of:

 

Some of my favorite songs using the metaphor of fire, image from confluencecapitalpartners.com

 

FIRE

The primal natural force that is at the heart of our very existence. From the sun above us, to the many billions of stars that we can see and never touch; forever to be used as a symbolic representation of love (“‘I’d give the stars to you”) and it’s the reason we conquered the darkness of ancient nights,long before we reached the level of technological advancement to flip a light switch or a heater on (avoiding real flames), fire’s warmth kept us alive to survive the most bitter nights; as a fireplace at home, a campfire during the respite of our travels, or a torch lit to show us the path through the most treacherous paths. it’s power is undeniable and its necessity for life, inescapable.

Fire’s red signature color is the color of passion, and it’s no mistake that our lips and tongue are faded imitations of it’s true deepness.  A depth we struggle to embrace with our love and passions.

The following songs represent my personal favorite songs that use fire, and similar expressions (‘flames’, ‘fiery’, ‘burning’, ‘heat’, etc…) so well. The songs here are each worthy of full reviews as I’ve done for other tracks on my page, and a couple already have such reviews (they are noted)…and most of these will have such a treatment done, later at some point.

For me, these are fantastic songs that capture both the scope of fire’s awesome destructive power, but also it’s more subtle ability (as a metaphor) to leave a profound mark on those so afflicted by the touch of it’s flame.

(not ranked in any particular order of personal fondness, except for what I think works well as a playlist.)

Enjoy these Music Tracks and lyrics!

1.  Song: Song Reckless Burning
Artist: Jesse Sykes & The Sweet Hereafter

Lyrics:

Pretty thing, I’ve got you
Right where I used to be
We ride across this city
Starting fires recklessly

And everything is closing
But tonight, we’ll stay awhile
And if this darkness lingers
I’ll fall to you just like a child

Pretty thing, I’ve got you
Right where this trouble lands
With reckless burning
I have been charged again

Goodnight, Irene

2.  Song: Set Fire to the Rain
Artist: Adele

Lyrics:

I let it fall, my heart,
And as it fell you rose to claim it
It was dark and I was over
Until you kissed my lips and you saved me

My hands, they’re strong
But my knees were far too weak,
To stand in your arms
Without falling to your feet

But there’s a side to you
That I never knew, never knew.
All the things you’d say
They were never true, never true,
And the games you play
You would always win, always win.

But I set fire to the rain,
Watched it pour as I touched your face,
Well, it burned while I cried
‘Cause I heard it screaming out your name, your name!

When I lay with you
I could stay there
Close my eyes
Feel you here forever
You and me together
Nothing is better

‘Cause there’s a side to you
That I never knew, never knew,
All the things you’d say,
They were never true, never true,
And the games you’d play
You would always win, always win.

But I set fire to the rain,
Watched it pour as I touched your face,
Well, it burned while I cried
‘Cause I heard it screaming out your name, your name!

I set fire to the rain
And I threw us into the flames
When it fell, something died
‘Cause I knew that that was the last time, the last time!

Sometimes I wake up by the door,
That heart you caught must be waiting for you
Even now when we’re already over
I can’t help myself from looking for you.

I set fire to the rain,
Watched it pour as I touched your face,
Well, it burned while I cried
‘Cause I heard it screaming out your name, your name

I set fire to the rain,
And I threw us into the flames
When it fell, something died
‘Cause I knew that that was the last time, the last time, ohhhh!

Oh noooo
Let it burn, oh
Let it burn
Let it burn

3.  Song: Burnin’ for you
Artist: Blue Oyster Cult

Lyrics: 

Home in the valley
Home in the city
Home isn’t pretty
Ain’t no home for me

Home in the darkness
Home on the highway
Home isn’t my way
Home will never be

Burn out the day
Burn out the night
I can’t see no reason to put up a fight
I’m living for giving the devil his due

And I’m burning, I’m burning, I’m burning for you
I’m burning, I’m burning, I’m burning for you

Time is the essence
Time is the season
Time ain’t no reason
Got no time to slow

Time everlasting
Time to play b-sides
Time ain’t on my side
Time I’ll never know

Burn out the day
Burn out the night
I’m not the one to tell you what’s wrong or what’s right
I’ve seen suns that were freezing and lives that were through

Well I’m burning, I’m burning, I’m burning for you
I’m burning, I’m burning, I’m burning for you

Burn out the day
Burn out the night
I can’t see no reason to put up a fight
I’m living for giving the devil his due

And I’m burning, I’m burning, I’m burning for you
I’m burning, I’m burning, I’m burning for you

4.  Song: Grapevine Fires
Artist: Death Cab for Cutie

Lyrics:

When the wind picked up
And the fire spread
And the grapevines seemed left for dead.
And the northern sky, looked like the end of day,
The end of days.

The wake up call to a rented room
Sounded like an alarm of impending doom.
To warn us it’s only a matter of time.
Before we all burn
Before we all burn
Before we all burn
Before we all burn.

We bought some wine and some paper cups
Near your daughter’s school when we picked her up
And drove to a cemetery on a hill,
On a hill.

Watched the plumes paint the sky gray
As she laughed and danced through the field of graves
There I knew it would be alright
That everything would be alright,
Would be alright
Would be alright
Would be alright
Would be alright.

And the news reports on the radio
Said it was getting worse
As the ocean air fanned the flames.
But I couldn’t think of anywhere I would have rather been
To watch it all burn away,
To burn away.

The firemen worked in double shifts,
With prayers for rain on their lips,
And they knew it was only a matter of time.

5.  Song: In Your Room
Artist: Depeche Mode

Lyrics:

In your room
Where time stands still
Or moves at your will
Will you let the morning come soon
Or will you leave me lying here
In your favourite darkness
Your favourite half-light
Your favourite consciousness
Your favourite slave

In your room
Where souls disappear
Only you exist here
Will you lead me to your armchair
Or leave me lying here
Your favourite innocence
Your favourite prize
Your favourite smile
Your favourite slave

I’m hanging on your words
Living on your breath
Feeling with your skin
Will I always be here
In your room
Your burning eyes
Cause flames to arise
Will you let the fire die down soon
Or will I always be here
Your favourite passion
Your favourite game
Your favourite mirror
Your favourite slave

I’m hanging on your words
Living on your breath
Feeling with your skin
Will I always be here

6.  Song: Sol Solis
Artist: Moving Mountains

My review of this track is here
My full review of this incredible album is here:

Lyrics:

take your hands away from your face
so i can see everything you are
and everything you used to be
you used to be to me
something you dont wanna be, i know.

you, you’re like the sun
and i am earth
together we’re one
but someday
your fire will die
and i’ll grow cold
without sunlight.
and i will freeze, baby
i will die, i’d freeze, i’d die for you.

things, they always die
just give it time.
but we, someday we’ll see
our love will shine,
our love will shine.

your love wont fade, darling.
lover, i cannot do this alone
things like this are better off untold
someday the sun will die and i’ll grow cold
i hope someday your love finds it’s way home.

(cause you are the sun and i am the earth)

7.  Song: Your Heart is an Empty Room
Artist: Death Cab for Cutie

Lyrics:

Burn it down ’til the embers smoke on the ground
And start new when your heart is an empty room
With walls of the deepest blue

Home’s face
How it ages when you’re away
And spring blooms and you find a love that’s true
But you don’t know what now to do
‘Cause the chase is all you know and she stopped running months ago

And all you see is where else you could be when you’re at home
And out on the street are so many possibilities to not be alone

The flames and smoke climbed out of every window
And disappeared with everything that you held dear
But you shed not a single tear
For the things that you didn’t need
‘Cause you knew you were finally free

‘Cause all you see is where else you could be when you’re at home
And there on the street are so many possibilities to not be alone

8.  Song: Salvation Army
Artist: The Gloria Record

[No Video Version is Available, please click link below to play the MP3 audio file)

Note:  Amazing Eargasm(soulgasm) at the 4:45 mark and beyond, so please let it build up and get to that point (it takes awhile)…and enjoy.

Lyrics:

got a job for the salvation
army come and find my
come and save my soul
i got a job for the salvation
army come and find my
come and save
my soul got lost along the way
my soul got lost i cannot say
‘may be down, but never out’
i got a job for the salvation
army come and find my
come and save my
got a statue of my heart inside my chest
got a statue of my heart inside my
dropped it just to see if it would break
but im picking up the pieces
and im saving everyone
im saving everyone
‘may be down, but never out
my sould got lost along the way
my soul got lost i cannot say
‘may be down, but never out’
got a statue of my heart inside my chest
got a statue of my heart inside my
dropped it just to see if it would break
i got a job for the salvation army
ringin a bell   [Note:  EARGASM starts!]
the worlds attached to strings
that pull us to the sun
where we’ll burn for what we’ve done
where we’ll burn for what we’ve done
im saving everyone
im saving everyone
ringin a bell
ringin a bell

9.  Song: Slow Dancing in the Burning Room
Artist: John Mayer

Lyrics:

It’s not a silly little moment
It’s not the storm before the calm
This is the deep and dyin’ breath of
This love we’ve been workin’ on

Can’t seem to hold you like I want to
So I can feel you in my arms
Nobody’s gonna come and save you
We pulled too many false alarms

We’re goin’ down
And you can see it too
We’re goin’ down
And you know that we’re doomed
My dear
We’re slow dancing in a burnin’ room

I was the one you always dreamed of
You were the one I tried to draw
How dare you say it’s nothing to me
Baby, you’re the only light I ever saw

I’ll make the most of all the sadness
You’ll be a bitch because you can
You try to hit me, just hurt me
So you leave me feeling dirty
‘Cause you can’t understand

Go cry about it, why don’t you
Go cry about it, why don’t you
Go cry about it, why don’t you

My dear, we’re slow dancin’ in a burnin’ room
Burnin’ room, burnin’ room

Don’t you think we outta know by now?
Don’t you think we shoulda learned somehow?
Don’t you think we outta know by now?
Don’t you think we shoulda learned somehow?
Don’t you think we outta know by now?
Don’t you think we shoulda learned somehow?

10.  Song: the Earth and the Sun
Artist: Moving Mountains

My full review of this incredible album is here:

Lyrics:

Take your hands away from your face
So I can see everything you are
And everything you’ve been to me
Something you don’t wanna be
Something you don’t wanna be

You, you’re like the sun
And I am earth
Together we’re one
But someday your fire will die
And I’ll grow cold without sunlight
And I will die, baby
And I will freeze

Science: Response to ‘A is for Atheist’ web blog, to an article supposedly refuting the Intelligent Design argument

Response to ‘A is for Atheist’ web blog

Response to 'A is for Atheist' web blog post supposedly refuting intelligent design

Response to ‘A is for Atheist’ web blog post supposedly refuting intelligent design

The article responded to is on the: a is for atheist5760 blogspot.com site  (had to remove the link because now it attempts to install a malware/flash installer when accessing it)

I posted my response as a comment on this article, but as you can see there are almost NO comments on the site on the bottom, and this article has been posted for a couple years now; so I thought I’d put this, fleshed out more, on my blog.

Here was my reply to the above “refutation”:

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“I reject both premises as false as neither are necessary, hence Stephen C. Meyer’s ID theory as an explanation of origins doesn’t fail. There is no scientific need to explain more than what is “possible” [edit: or probable] to be a valid explanation in science.

I reject the notion that a theory leading to a supposed infinite regress = FALSEHOOD. The logic simply doesn’t follow that something is false because more data is not forthcoming at the moment. Such reasoning would invalidate many of the sciences that study past phenomenon. If we are seeing signs of intelligence in the biological facts we do currently have, then that’s enough to conclude it as a best explanation (as per current scientific knowledge, but the testing, the theorizing, the experiments, etc. aka: THE SCIENCE doesn’t STOP there and that is KEY)

…but we can still INFER and conclude one theory makes more sense vs. another given the available data, but one thing a person should NOT do is refuse to allow intelligence as an explanation (in order to conform to some materialist bias) because ultimately the TRUTH (facts) of the matter is what IS important.

If a person rejects intelligence primo de facto as a cause, it certainly should not be done solely because a person WANTS to A.) Avoid an infinite regress or because B.) They don’t have the full rap-sheet on the designer in question…in the first objection, how do you propose to resolve such an infinite regress as the multiple-world hypothesis which is the leading materialist explanation of the origin of the universe?

Let’s face it, no matter what we do, concerning discussions of ‘origins’, it ALWAYS comes back around to either an infinite regress  or an “unmoved mover” (something not suspect to an infinite regress) as a starting foundation, and so it seems clear to me at least that this is a philosophical (not scientific) argument at its root of whether mind or matter is being primary, and then we go on arguing what else we accept/reject from that bedrock, so I say to all:  Take your pick I guess.

Thank you for the interesting article.”

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Refuting the Intelligent Design argument? – I think not.

Refuting the Intelligent Design argument? – I think not.

To further clarify (both generally and concerning my point B above.) I mentioned above anyone can come up with a premise they feel will negate someone’s position if they can prove or disprove that premise (note: the premise only).  In reality such a tactic does no such thing IF that premise can be logically rejected. (Of course doing so doesn’t prove the counter position either, but that’s not the point)

ID Theory is clearly based on a study of causality and the inference (from observation) of the FACT that intelligence does in everyday life reveal for us a solid uniformity of experience (in being responsible for the creation of many things that cannot arise through “natural means”) as an example of this:  imagine a computer evolving if given enough time….never needing a mind etc..now stick with me, this is NOT an argument by ‘false analogy’, just an idea to get a basic point across. The truth of the matter (as far as all human experience and science tells us) is that complex specified information has one “known” cause in the universe, and that cause is IS intelligence, but in this article the author is attempting to refute the ID position on the grounds that the conclusion “intelligence most likely did it” must ALSO somehow necessarily (absolutely) provide additional explanations before it can be taken seriously. (for EX: “what” intelligence is it exactly? Is it God? Which one? or is it Aliens, or a powerful sentient floating teapot, etc..?)

The fact of the matter is we don’t know & likely cannot know according to the limitations of ID (not to mention the scientific method itself, the assumption that science MUST explain all of reality alone is NOT a scientific claim, it’s a philosophical claim and that’s a whole different argument…) , but this isn’t good enough for this militant atheist web blogger and his “hidden premise” argument,  so many people like this aren’t happy with the missing answers they wish were not the case, so they assert boldly that ID cannot be science.  This is an ABSURD perspective (and quite corrupting to the very nature of science) I would argue.  Charles Darwin himself employed the same foundational form of reasoning that ID does when speculating evolution; he didn’t have all the answers (he had no clue as to the level of sophistication in biochemical system either), yet now as time progresses we see clear signs of evolution occurring at the micro-cellular level of organisms all the time. Claiming victory against a theory because you don’t have ALL the answers you would WISH you had that naturally follow from questions that reasonably arise from a theory is tantamount to invalidating most of the historical sciences we consider worthwhile (Archeology, Historians), not to mention scientific fields that deal with intelligence as the foundation of their study. (Cryptography, Detectives).

The same objection swings both ways, and is equally true for ID as well, by understanding that just because a materialistic explanation doesn’t exist, it doesn’t follow IT CANNOT…but ID isn’t the one claiming a monopoly on the truth of the subject and dismissing the opponent due to semantics & adding burdens of proof that it doesn’t (shouldn’t) need to bear, it’s merely asserting itself as the best casual explanation. (currently)

While it would be nice to know all these details of WHAT this intelligence is from the science itself, and where it is, and even what it’s favorite salad dressing is, it’s purely optional and is not incumbent upon ID to provide any more than the most generic indicator that an origin (in its case, specifically that the origin of complex specific information) can only arise as the product of a creative intelligence.  Lacking any materialistic explanation (as we do currently), this is the most rational position to hold, even in the absence of a robust step by step process (filter) available to determine a positive process of which to find such an intelligence in a system vs. it’s absence when discussing anything beyond absolute origins.  Why? Because given what we DO observe as the products of intelligence, that these all have complex specified information, Ex: your software, your computer, writing on a notepad, Mount Rushmore, etc.. and in all of the world the only natural phenomenon that literally contains the same type of information, is the “digital code” at the very foundation of biological life itself. (DNA) which has yet to be explained through any naturalistic pathway for its origination.  They are not even close to explaining it.

Present day attempts are being made to use RNA as an materialistic evolutionary explanation in the ‘RNA world hypothesis’ but they aren’t even close…the problem is more severe than many realize because chance isn’t going to do it alone (not once, least of all trillions of times, and they admit as much), so it’s commonly accepted that it must be chance acted upon by natural selection, but that isn’t even feasible in this case, we aren’t talking about macro or even micro evolution (modification of a preexisting system at this point… This is WAY earlier…Natural Selection cannot even be in operation at this point (DNA’s creation) because Natural selection REQUIRES a self-replicating molecule to even function as a starting point, which comes along long after DNA!!  This is the most foundational chicken or the egg argument that has ever existed.  Complex specified information is not MATTER, it’s not Energy, it’s wholly different and yet it exists, contradicting the entire Materialism/Physicalism worldview.  The best (most rational) explanation (given what we DO KNOW) even though being admittedly incomplete at this time, is that this complex specified information IS the product of  “an” intelligence. (Only, at least until something NEW comes along in reality to explain it in naturalistic terms.)

Just to address this, concerning a common objection to ID: this is NOT a “God of the Gaps argument”, and don’t believe that for one second if you hear such nonsense.  The easiest way to dismiss a position you vehemently disagree with it, is to be intellectually lazy by dismissing it out of hand, claiming some fallacy of reasoning you can’t even explain by itself…all this so you you don’t have to address the specific arguments that position makes, and so obfuscating details is preferred.  Why is it NOT a Gaps argument?  because the gap IS clearly already there and IT MUST BE FILLED WITH SOMETHING, the question is…filled with what? (in much the same way an archeologist may find an artifact and WISH he knew WHO the man was that shaped it, but all he can conclude is that was shaped by the activities of a conscious mind and nothing more.)

Imagine for a moment that this archeologist doesn’t know who exactly created the artifact, perhaps it’s too unique or even damaged, and so he changes his mind and concludes that an intelligence was not involved and did NOT create it. He instead resolutely states that it must have been formed by wind erosion, all by an unguided, unintelligent natural process…because he didn’t learn about the inventor, and doesn’t want to commit an “archeologist of the gap fallacy.”… So silly, and yet according to the logic of many who are so antagonistic toward ID, this is their logic when taken to its natural (pun intended) conclusion.

MUSIC TRACK REVIEW – Songs I love, and why. Brothers on a Hotel Bed by Death Cab for Cutie

MUSIC TRACK REVIEW

Band:  Death Cab for Cutie

Song:  Brothers on a Hotel Bed – from the Album PLANS

 

Music Track Review, Death Cab For Cutie, Plans, Brothers On a Hotel Bed

“I want to do things so wild with you that I don’t know how to say them.” – Anais Nin to Henry Miller

Do you remember the vigor of your youth?  Do you recall the feeling of waking up earlier and being the more excited to embrace what the day could bring you, and having far less groans about it?

Has your passion for life (or for someone you used to love so powerfully) been snatched away, kidnapped by the memories you wish you could visit back into time, leaving this now dreary present to some obscure place in your past, discarded and abandoned?

Why?  Has regret filled your heart so much, and left no room in it to breath, to laugh, to experience a new and exciting joy?

Do you not remember your first kiss, how that felt? When someone told you the first time that they loved you, or What about your first dance? What about your first embrace alone in the dark with someone you would wish that experience could forever endure?

I love this song because it’s a powerful song in capturing a spirit of a person whose once burning heart has been dominated (conquered) by the cold passage of time; as sad as it is…

I believe it’s important to remember that this awesome love we feel, expressed as primal passion and given to someone we love doesn’t change in the least in WHAT IT IS, or WHAT IT’S CAPABLE OF, but rather it’s US that changes. We replace youthful naivety with a bitter sort of reservedness.  We do this to hold back to some degree, perhaps spare our-self some theoretical future pain, but at what cost to those who deserve our full measure of love, our most raw and powerful passions?  Will the person you profess to love now become numb and distant to your half-hearted advances someday, forever being cut-off to the overwhelming love and intimacy you COULD show it only it arose from the wellspring of a younger heart? Will they become as the person in this song is, expressed as being little more than a brother (sibling) in your bed, cold and distant…where the spark is truly gone??

Short of some terrible physical infirmity that prevents such a powerful love from seeking it’s absolute highest physical expressions, let it not be so!  May your feet forever “break from the concrete” and may you never let a day go by that could have been spent in the arms and the smiles and ridiculous unbridled laughter of such a fiery and all-consuming embrace.

LYRICS:

You may tire of me as our December sun is setting ’cause I’m not who I used to be
No longer easy on the eyes but these wrinkles masterfully disguise the youthful boy below
Who turned your way and saw something he was not looking for
Both a beginning and an end
But now he lives inside someone he does not recognize when he catches his reflection on accident

On the back of a motorbike with your arms outstretched trying to take flight, leaving everything behind
But even at our swiftest speed we couldn’t break from the concrete in the city where we still reside
And I have learned that even landlocked lovers yearn for the sea, like navy men,
‘Cause now we say goodnight from our own separate sides like brothers on a hotel bed