The Ascent Of Man

I purchased Jacob Bronowski’s beautifully illustrated book The Ascent of Man and the videotapes when first published in 1973 and have re-watched episodes throughout these years. With some effort, one can now watch The Ascent of Man on Youtube. I have posted here Part 1 ‘Lower than the Angels’ and then Michael Parkinson’s interview of Jacob Bronowski,  followed by personal reflections, which ends suggesting we reflect on our ascent – it can be managed!

Ascent Of Man Pt 1 Lower Than The Angels

Volume 1 of Jacob Bronowski’s epic examination of our rise from the apes and the development of civilization. (from May 1973) “Man’s imagination, his reason, his emotional subtlety, and toughness, make it possible for him not to accept the environment but to change it. And that series of inventions, by which man from age to age has remade his environment, is a different kind of evolution – not biological but cultural evolution. I call that brilliant series of cultural peaks ‘The Ascent of Man’.” Dr. Jacob Bronowski opens the programme at the Great Rift Valley of East Africa and traces the evolution of man’s great gifts – foresight and imagination. He follows man from Africa through the desert and Ice Age – Chapters 1 Shaper of the Landscape; Chapter 2 The Rift Valley; Chapter 3 Australopithecus; Chapter 4 Physical Gifts; Chapter 5 Precursors of Man; Chapter 6 The Hunter; Chapter 7 The Ice Age; Chapter 8 Cave Art.

Michael Parkinson interviews Dr Jacob Bronowski 1974

“A belief in a higher power” is a lower-level in man’s ascent as Jacob Bronowski addresses in his monumental BBC program The Ascent Of Man. One can re-watch this program many times, which I do and not tire. I recently did so and then added Michael Parkinson interview of Dr. Bronowski to complete this blog entry. While watching it, I took notes for how I might comment on it for a blog entry. Close to the end, it hit me square on, nearly knocking me off my chair, something like the shock Bronowski felt when he realized the results of applying mathematics to the analysis of early human teeth. Well, okay not quite as shocking but of the same quality of insight into what needs to be studied. Abraham Maslow defines these as peak experiences and Bronowski comments that the ascent of man is pursued today by insisting society provide every man and woman with a ‘quality working life’ designed to address the ‘highest self-actualizing need of Man’. Wow! My research ‘An Inquiry into QWL’ in my bookcase just rattled a bit and I am now wondering what to do with the message Dr. Bronowski is sending?

題名:  An Inquiry Into the Quality of Work Life in Hsinchu Science Based Industrial Park. National Taiwan University (1988)
作者:  徐木蘭; Scherling, Steven A.; 陳家聲 Hsu, Mu-Lan; Chen, Chia-Shen.

Tesseract communication through space and time. We hear you Jacob.

Here then is Maslow’s psychoanalytical framework for designing a ‘quality working life’ which ought to satisfy Maslow’s highest need, Self-Actualization.

Social interest. Negative emotions. Reactive anger. righteous indignation. Identification with the human condition. A desire to help.

Interpersonal relations: Levels of love. Be love. Deficiency love:

Awareness: Efficient Perception: Have clear eyes: has clear intuitions, can see that is the right conclusion. The hypothesis is SA has more efficient perception.

The freshness of appreciations: A miracle remains a miracle and one see this and enjoys this again and again.

Peak experience: feeling of awe and the feeling something important has happened. The mystic experiences.

 

G.W.F. Hegel on the Slave’s Development in the Master-Slave Dialectic – Philosophy Core Concepts

 

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Trumpty Through A Looking Glass

In a previous post addressing Donald Trump building his southern border wall, someone commented that “Humpty Dumpty had a wall”. Interesting, yes, we remember: “Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, had a great fall, breaking his head, which all the Queen’s men and horses could not put back to together again”. My immediate thought following this memory was, could Trumpty fall from his ‘imaginary wall’, crack his head, never to be put back together again – impeached and found guilty? Is this too much a fairytale? Alice was 7 years and six months old when she encountered Humpty and so was in 2nd grade, which took me back to Clara Barton grade school, when we must have read Lewis Carroll’s dialogue of Alice meeting Humpty Dumpty.

With the curiosity of Alice and seeing a rabbit hole, I crawled closer and closer…, losing my balance, falling in – down and down I tumbled, landing in a tree in the scene of Alice’s meeting with Humpty Dumpty. I sat where I had landed and listened in…, to my surprise I realized that Dumpty’s logic, ‘back-to-front’, is the same as Trumpty’s logic. However, a big difference is that Dumpty understands his logic and explains his use of language to Alice! Listening in to “Through the Looking Glass Chapter 6, we hear Humpty Dumpty, who, besides celebrating his ‘unbirthday’, provides his own translation of the strange terms in Jabberwocky. In the process, he introduces Alice to the concept of portmanteau words, which Trump is trying to produce as he is galumphing around his ‘imaginary wall’ in a triumphant manner. Alice ends her encounter with Dumpty as I imagine many Americans are thinking about Trumpty, “Of all the unsatisfactory people I have ever met”.

Now, what else is down this rabbit hole, are other of Alice’s encounters mirroring what we are currently encountering?

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The Century of the Self

The Century of the Self – Part 1: “Happiness Machines”
The story of the relationship between Sigmund Freud and his American nephew, Edward Bernays. Bernays invented the public relations profession in the 1920s and was the first person to take Freud’s ideas into the are of manipulating the masses. He showed American corporations how they could make people want things they didn’t need by systematically linking mass-produced goods to their unconscious desires.

Bernays was one of the main architects of the modern techniques of mass-consumer persuasion, using every trick in the book, from celebrity endorsement and outrageous PR stunts to eroticizing the motorcar. His most notorious coup was breaking the taboo on women smoking by persuading them that cigarettes were a symbol of independence and freedom. But Bernays was convinced that this was more than just a way of selling consumer goods. It was a new political idea of how to control the masses. By satisfying the inner irrational desires that his uncle had identified, people could be made happy and thus docile. It was the start of the all-consuming self which has come to dominate today’s world.

The Century of the Self – Part 2: “The Engineering of Consent”
This episode explores how those in power in post-war America used Freud’s ideas about the unconscious mind to try and control the masses. Politicians and planners came to believe Freud’s underlying premise – that deep within all human beings were dangerous and irrational desires and fears. They were convinced that it was the unleashing of these instincts that had led to the barbarism of Nazi Germany. To stop it ever happening again they set out to find ways to control this hidden enemy within the human mind. Sigmund Freud’s daughter, Anna, and his nephew, Edward Bernays, provided the centrepiece philosophy. The US government, big business, and the CIA used their ideas to develop techniques to manage and control the minds of the American people. But this was not a cynical exercise in manipulation. Those in power believed that the only way to make democracy work and create a stable society was to repress the savage barbarism that lurked just under the surface of normal American life.

The Century of the Self – Part 3: “There is a Policeman Inside All Our Heads; He Must Be Destroyed.”
In the 1960s, a radical group of psychotherapists challenged the influence of Freudian ideas in America. They were inspired by the ideas of Wilhelm Reich, a pupil of, who had turned against him and was hated by the Freud family. He believed that the inner self did not need to be repressed and controlled. It should be encouraged to express itself. Out of this came a political movement that sought to create new beings free of the psychological conformity that had been implanted in people’s minds by business and politics. This programme shows how this rapidly developed in America through self-help movements like Werber Erhard’s Erhard Seminar Training – into the irresistible rise of the expressive self: the Me Generation. But the American corporations soon realised that this new self was not a threat but their greatest opportunity. It was in their interest to encourage people to feel they were unique individuals and then sell them ways to express that individuality. To do this they turned to techniques developed by Freudian psychoanalysts to read the inner desires of the new self.

The Century of the Self – Part 4: “Eight People Sipping Wine in Kettering”
This episode explains how politicians on the left, in both Britain and America, turned to the techniques developed by business to read and fulfil the inner desires of the self. Both New Labour, under Tony Blair, and the Democrats, led by Bill Clinton, used the focus group, which had been invented by psychoanalysts, in order to regain power. They set out to mould their policies to people’s inner desires and feelings, just as capitalism had learnt to do with products. Out of this grew a new culture of public relations and marketing in politics, business and journalism. One of its stars in Britain was Matthew Freud who followed in the footsteps of his relation, Edward Bernays, the inventor of public relations in the 1920s. The politicians believed they were creating a new and better form of democracy, one that truly responded to the inner feelings of the individual. But what they didn’t realise was that the aim of those who had originally created these techniques had not been to liberate the people but to develop a new way of controlling them.

 

 

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Happy 21st Birthday Valentine Annah!

This is a very special ‘morning page’ as I have been planning to write it all of your life. Writing this just now has brought tears to my eyes, remembering how this day began 21 years ago. The emotions behind these continuing tears are very strong. I have wiped them away with my figure tips, which are now writing these words, sentences, and birthday essay to you. You know better than others that I now define myself as a writer, after all, efforts to keep busy teaching, photographing, and videoing have fallen by the wayside, the only thing left to do is write – no one has anything to do with me writing but myself – maybe publishing what is written but I will cross that bridge when reached. This reminds me of Laozi deciding near the end of his life to leave China and upon reaching a gate in The Great Wall he was stopped by a guard and told he could not leave China until he wrote a book. He returned home, wrote the Dao de Ching and then was allowed to leave China. This is where I am in life as you symbolically at 21 begin your life. I can only imagine reading what you will be writing when you reach 75 years. I will be there gathered around your writing desk looking on as pointed out by Robert Romanyshyn in his important book The Wounded Researcher – Reseach with Soul in Mind.

I remember most clearly February 14, 1998, as Amah had come to Fargo to help with your birth. She had a room in the lower lever and kept a close eye on Aaron now 3 years old. That night we got Fannie and you settled into bed and asleep until Mom woke about 11 with her water breaking, which freaked me out. I jumped out of bed, yelled at Amah, and rushed us to MeritCare, less than a mile away. Fannie’s doctor was not able to deliver and so another did and I was allowed to stand on Mom’s left side as you easily just popped out so opposite to your brother’s experience of entering the world – his big head caused us consternation. While Mom was attended, a nurse took us into an adjourning room and handed you to me. You were so beautiful and I soon returned you to Mom’s arms. We love you so very much, Annah, and we are still by your side watching your ‘Dao de Ching’ in his life and willing assist in any way we can.

I have memories of when I turned 21 on March 6, 1965. I was a senior at UND living in the Sigma Nu Fraternity House. That day grandpa, Orlando, come up to Grand Forks and delivered to me a large 3 gallon-sized bottle of whiskey. I am not sure what to make of this gift as I look back on my life experience with alcohol. Orlando and Billiette were social animals living in 1950s Fargo gathering in friends’ homes around a basement bar, which they all had built. I did not drink in High School as I felt it slowed my performance playing on the hockey team. However, when hockey was over and I turned 18, the legal age in South Dakota, a bunch of us guys drove two cars to Rosholt SD and invaded the two bars which were there. The fraternity next gave me an experience with alcohol and it was in some ways a protected private environment away from the public. My first experience with hard-liquor was a real hangover – not fun.  However, when I was 21 some brothers and lady friends gathered at a local pub for a few pitchers of beer. As I remember that night, I was cautious, concerned about driving home, which was done without incident. The rest of this story is waiting until being completed in a book on Granma-B’s life, ‘Billiette Calling…’ that is calling out to me this moment. Okay, Mom, I hear you and promise you it will be completed and published this year.  I now leave this unfolding story’s thread to pursue another thread that is more theoretical and of course, Annah, you know where I am going – to C.G. Jung’s ideas.

My gifts to Mom, Aaron, and you have lately been books some being passed on from the family’s library. Most of these have been from Arvid, Billiette, and my libraries in our home. This week, I kept thinking and looking at books that I might give you today when I came across this YouTube clip Carl Jung: What is the Individuation Process? (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssuDqTtUcKEw&t=391s), which is part of the Academy of Ideas (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCiRiQGCHGjDLT9FQXFW0I3A) series – these are well done!

As you know from our reading together and watching the movie “A Dangerous Method” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UH4BtJHkrD8) the process of ‘individuation’ is central in Jung’s thought of living a meaningful life. I hope you, enjoy, study, and apply these ideas to your life! This dream analysis scene between Freud and Jung points out a key difference in their approach to dreams and the unconscious. I selected it as central to understanding the analytical method, work with 

 

So, what physical book do I give you on this special day? I started my first reading of C.G. Jung Lord of the Underworld by Colin Wilson  December 22, 1988 in Beijing China and finished reading it alone December 31, 1988, at 21:26 a few hours before New Year’s Eve. Since then, I have re-read it countless times!  The Essential – Colin Wilson is Wilson presenting the central idea underlying his writing career – he wrote his first book at the age of 24, The Outsider, which was a worldwide bestseller in 1954 – he is a most prolific writer and when I am reincarnated I might like it to be with your spirit, Colin. I am going to select Lord of the Underworld’s Chapter 5 The Invisible Writing as a special birthday gift to you Annah, which Wilson does a fine job of weaving Jung’s ideas together. Let me see if I can do just to his work.

What possibly is invisible writing? I remembered in grade school being fascinated with ‘invisible ink’ – is this the same, I wondered? In some way they are similar. However, with invisible ink, we know what we are writing down but with invisible writing, we have to discover that is being written in our unfolding individuation project. Susan Rowland’s work on C.G. Jung’s Dramatic and Imaginative Writing.  is this deep-writing approach that Wilson addresses in Chapter 5.

So, to address this chapter, let’s examine each time Wilson mentions invisible writing. Colin’s first use of the term is in reference to his first book, The Outsiders, about 19th Century romantic writers, which Wilson suggests have the same motive force driving Jung’s work. Quoting Arthur Koestler invisible writing is described, “In my youth I regarded the Universe as an open book, printed in the language of physical equations, whereas now it appears to me as a text written in invisible ink, of which, in our rare moments of grace, we are able to decipher a small fragment.” Wilson goes on the state that, “Every major romantic has possessed this intuition: that the secret of the universe is somehow written in invisible writing” (92). The important point is to understand and use our Intuition.

The second and third mention of invisible writing follows in the next paragraph where Wilson comments on the topic of Rowland’s book and lecture – Jung as a writer. Jung being an intuitive type is not evaluated very highly in his ability to communicate his intuitions into words. Wilson finds that Jung’s attempt in writing Symbols of Transformation to be a “clumsy attempt to express this feeling that the secret is written in invisible writing.”  This evaluation of Jung’s writing skill is carried on to Jung’s later manuscripts. This should not be unexpected, if something is invisible, it is going to a challenge to visualize and write about! This is the question we need to entertain; how does one see, understand, and then write about the Invisible?

The next mention of invisible writing, Wilson examines the two-writing styles of Jung in writing his most popular book Psychological Types. Wilson suggests that it was written on two levels – but mostly in an “old fashion, pre-Freudian textbook style, with a cramped small script which was dry and scientific, however, at times Jung’s style changed into an open more open free-flowing Gothic script. For the most part, Psychological Types was written in a small dry script style but after this book Jung’s writing style opened up. This opening Wilson’s attributes to Jung reading, meeting, and becoming good friends of Richard Wilhelm translator of the classic Chinese book I Ching. What Jung found was a way to understand invisible writing. Jung wrote the foreword to the I Ching’s Egnlish translation.

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In Dialogue – Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson

Two of the most popularly significant analytical thinkers on challenges facing our World are Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson. These speakers are introduced, then briefly we listen to them individually speak, then presented are the series of four dialogues they participated in, and I attempt to write a note with Erich Fromm’s help on what is now unfolding.

I listened to  Video 1 taped in Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2OlRZUa and Video 2 also taped Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2CUQT0g on 10.13.18 and took some notes. I am planning to listen to Video 3: https://bit.ly/2CUa0HG and Video 4: https://bit.ly/2On6Y0a this week. However, I am starting to record my reflection on this experience in writing in order to capture the abstract conceptualizations driving these to thinkers with what is unfolding with my reflection

I have been reading and following Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson for some years now. I listened to Video 1: Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2OlRZUa and Video 2: Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2CUQT0g on 10.13.18 and am planning to listen to Video 3: https://bit.ly/2CUa0HG and Video 4: https://bit.ly/2On6Y0a this week.

Sam Harris (born April 9, 1967) is an American author, philosopher, neuroscientist, critic of religion,[3] blogger, public intellectual, and podcast host. His work touches on a wide range of topics, including rationality, ethics, freewill, neuroscience, meditation, philosophy of mind, politics, Islamism, terrorism,  and artificial intelligence. He is described as one of the “Four Horsemen of Atheism,” together with Richard DawkinsChristopher Hitchens, and Daniel Dennett.[4]

Harris’s first book, The End of Faith (2004), won the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for First Nonfiction[5] and remained on The New York Times Best Seller list for 33 weeks.[6] In The Moral Landscape (2010), he argues that science answers moral problems and can aid human well-being.[3] He then published a longform essay Lying in 2011, the short book Free Will in 2012, Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion in 2014, and, with British writer Maajid NawazIslam and the Future of Tolerance: A Dialogue in 2015. Harris’ work has been translated into over 20 languages.[7] In September 2013, Harris began releasing the Waking Up podcast, in which he interviews guests, responds to critics, and discusses his views (Wikipedia).

Jordan Peterson (born June 12, 1962[4]) is a Canadian clinical psychologist and a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto. His main areas of study are in abnormal, social, and personality psychology,[3] with a particular interest in the psychology of religious and ideological belief,[5] and the assessment and improvement of personality and performance.[6] Peterson studied at the University of Alberta and McGill University. He remained at McGill as a post-doctoral fellow from 1991 to 1993 before moving to Harvard University, where he was an assistant and then associate professor in the psychology department.[7][8] In 1998, he moved back to Canada, as a faculty member in the psychology department at the University of Toronto, where he is currently a full professor.

Peterson’s first book, Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief, published in 1999, examined several academic fields to describe the structure of systems of beliefs and myths, their role in the regulation of emotion, creation of meaning, and several other topics such as motivation for genocide.[9][10][11] His second book, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, was released in January 2018.[7][12][13] In 2016, Peterson released a series of YouTube videos criticizing political correctness and the Canadian government’s Bill C-16. The act added gender identity as a prohibited ground of discrimination,[14] which Peterson characterized as an introduction of compelled speech into law. He subsequently received significant media coverage, attracting both support and criticism [7][12][13] (Wikipedia).

These guys are prolific and following their work can be done at their websites and on social media outlets. I am only going to link one clip to introduce these fellows before we get into the main bout – the 4-part faceoff of Harris and Peterson.

Science can answer moral question Sam Harris on TED

Jordan Peterson On The Illuminati

There we have at least an introductory video of Harris and Peterson. Much more can be learned about their thinking by searching the web and you may want to get a better handle on these two fellows, so go at it. However, now these two popular speakers faceoff in four monitored sessions which are linked below for us to watch and work to understand. May I suggest we take notes on what is unfolding, reflect on our experience, and attempt to write about the abstract conceptualizations Harris and Peterson are using to comprehend life. The central thrust of this encounter is to understand the other’s processes of thinking.

01 Harris/Weinstein/Peterson Discussion: Vancouver

Jordan B Peterson Published on Aug 31, 2018 This is the first video of the four-part debate that Sam Harris and I undertook in June 2018. Audio normalizes at 4:40. Sam and I met twice in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, with Bret Weinstein moderating, for a third time in Dublin, Ireland, and for a fourth and final time in London, England. Douglas Murray joined the debate with us for the latter two occasions. Video 1: Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2OlRZUa Video 2: Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2CUQT0g Video 3: https://bit.ly/2CUa0HG Video 4: https://bit.ly/2On6Y0a Sam is a well-known Enlightenment rationalist, and a prominent atheist – one of the “four horsemen,” along with Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens (now unfortunately deceased) and Daniel Dennett. He believes (1) that our ethical systems should or even must be grounded in something other than arbitrary revelation or opinion; (2) that the world of facts can and should provide that grounding; and (3) that the grounding of values in fact can occur in the absence of much perceptual or cognitive intermediation. I agree with him with regard to point (1) but not point (2) and (3). I won’t present any of my argument here, however, because Sam isn’t here to respond, as he is in the videos. I have also written three blog posts on the Harris/Peterson discussions, here: 1. https://jordanbpeterson.com/philosoph… 2. https://jordanbpeterson.com/philosoph… 3. TBA A note on the release of the videos, and their delay: Any event of this scale occurs because of the collaboration of many people, including, in this case. Travis Pangburn and his staff at Pangburn Philosophy, who organized and promoted the four-part debate series, and who incurred substantial financial and reputational risk in doing so (as nothing like this has been attempted before at this scale). None of us were sure at the outset whether Sam and I would manage a useful discussion, let alone four of them, or whether there would be a positive public response. In consequence, we didn’t spend much time before the debate series thinking about release (or formatting/editing) of video or audio recording. Since the events went well, however – appearing both productive and well-received publicly – we decided to move ahead with the production and release of the recordings. The team at Pangburn Philosophy completed the editing, in consequence. Sam and I agreed to allow the initial release behind Travis’s Patreon paywall, for a two-week period, after which we would post the videos for full public access on our respective video platforms, and release the audio in podcast form. The team at Pangburn Philosophy plans to use some substantial portion of what was raised through Patreon subscription for multi-language translation of their previously produced and future content (including these four debates). Additional relevant links: Sam Harris Podcast: https://samharris.org/ 12 Rules for Life Tour: Dates, Cities and Venues: https://jordanbpeterson.com/events/ My new book: 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos: https://jordanbpeterson.com/12-rules-… My first book: Maps of Meaning: The Architecture of Belief: https://jordanbpeterson.com/maps-of-m… Dr Jordan B Peterson Website: http://jordanbpeterson.com/ Self Authoring Suite: http://selfauthoring.com/ Understand Myself personality test: http://understandmyself.com/ Blog: https://jordanbpeterson.com/blog/ Podcast: https://jordanbpeterson.com/jordan-b-… Reading List: https://jordanbpeterson.com/2017/10/g… Twitter: https://twitter.com/jordanbpeterson Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/jordanbpeterson

02 Sam Harris, Jordan Peterson & Weinstein Dialogue – Vancouver

Published on Aug 31, 2018. Harris/Weinstein/Peterson: Discussion 02: Vancouver This is the second video of the four-part debate that Sam Harris and I undertook in June 2018. Sam and I met twice in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, with Bret Weinstein moderating, for the third time in Dublin, Ireland, and for a fourth and final time in London, England. Douglas Murray joined the debate with us for the latter two occasions. Video 1: Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2OlRZUa Video 2: Vancouver: https://bit.ly/2CUQT0g Video 3: https://bit.ly/2CUa0HG Video 4: https://bit.ly/2On6Y0a Sam is a well-known Enlightenment rationalist, and a prominent atheist – one of the “four horsemen,” along with Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens (now unfortunately deceased) and Daniel Dennett. He believes (1) that our ethical systems should or even must be grounded in something other than arbitrary revelation or opinion; (2) that the world of facts can and should provide that grounding; and (3) that the grounding of values in fact can occur in the absence of much perceptual or cognitive intermediation. I agree with him with regard to point (1) but not point (2) and (3). I won’t present any of my argument here, however, because Sam isn’t here to respond, as he is in the videos. I have also written three blog posts on the Harris/Peterson discussions, here: 1. https://jordanbpeterson.com/philosoph… 2. https://jordanbpeterson.com/philosoph…

03 Sam Harris, Jordan Peterson and Douglas Murray Dialogue – Dublin

07/14/2018 This is the third time Sam & Jordan appeared live together on stage. They were joined by Douglas Murray. This event took place at Arena in Dublin, Ireland on July 14th 2018 in front of 8500 people. The event was produced by Pangburn Philosophy.

04 Sam Harris, Jordan Peterson and Douglas Murray – London

07/16/2018 This is the fourth time Sam & Jordan appeared live together on stage. They were joined by Douglas Murray. This event took place at The O2 Arena in London, England on July 16th 2018 in front of 6500 people. The event was produced by Pangburn Philosophy.

I hope you are still here and have begun to crystalize your own thinking on this topic. To help us we have moderator Bret Weinstein reflections on what he witnessed.

Reflections on Sam Harris vs Jordan Peterson, Bret Weinstein

There, now it is time to share my reflections on this experience in light of an abstract conceptualization we in the process of formulating by actively writing about what we have witnessed.

 

 

 

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Imagine The Strength To Dream

In a recent dream, I am sitting alone in the center of a darkened room like the Fargo Theatre. I could see lights in the projection room, coming under the two doors entering the theatre, and from around the screen. A man asked me what I have done in my life. My response is, “ask others”. Earlier I read the new Time Magazine 10.29.2018 issue 50 most influential people in health care. After reading this, I started to re-read Colin Wilson’s The strength to dream Chapter 7 The need for polarities, where Wilson defines “more precisely the function of imagination,” that he began addressing earlier in the book. Wilson suggests that “imagination means the power of creating images of something not actually present… the function of imagination is to foresee the future and to enlarge the present consciousness… imagination is the detonator of the will. When connected with purpose – which is necessary for the future – it can arouse the will… imagination must work on fuel; its fuel may be any spontaneously generated energy: fear, love, lust, jealousy, wonder, ambition… the great artists have learned to generate large quantities of fuel and to use them to drive the imagination… The fundamental and undeniable fact about imagination is that its purpose is to intensify the life in man” (175).

The Essential – Colin Wilson

I thought of my personal physician, also a medical researcher – and was looking for his photo in the Time essay but did not find it. However, the first researcher Diva Nag wants to put him, a doctor on my wrist – I will ask him about this when I see him in January. Then Dr. Devinsky’d work on revolutionizing medical marijuana, reminded me to vote “yes” on ND Measure 3 – legalizing pot. A memory then surfaces of accompanying my friend Ken to his  MeritCare pain doctor and asking him if he would prescribe Ken marijuana and his saying if it were legal he would not hesitate to do so. So, much for that effort as we smoked on the drive back Ken’s room.

Dr. Grossman and Langone announced that NYU med-school is now offering free tuition, which has to worry socialist-hating Republicans. Hansen and Kvale’s speeding up therapy really caught my attention on how it could quicken the processes of life coaching. They have been able to reduce the therapy for OCD from months to a week. Their study in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy presents this approach and is now being extended to panic disorders and social anxietyanxieties now gripping the US. Sinclair is testing a pill that appears to address and even reverse some of the topical signs of aging. Wyss.Cory is using blood as medicine in using blood-plasma treatments for aging brains. Long is the fasting evangelist and director of the Longevity Institute at the University of California and believes that the secret to staving off the ills of old age is a diet designed to trick your body into thinking it’s fasting, which he has published about in his book The Longevity Diet. The diet preaches a low-protein, plant-based eating style with regular periods of fasting. I just ordered this book so I can make it to my 60th Class Reunion.

Mccray is building happier cities and launched ThriveNYC to improve wellness and now is operating in all 50 states – looking for ND’s now. Shanafelt’s boosting doctor morale is focused on the finding that half of the doctors now report they are professionally burned out. Maybe Dr. Devinsky’s idea of revolutionizing medical marijuana is part of boosting my doctor’s low morale? The Franks founders of Talkspace, have an app that connects more than a million users with the therapists via text or video, a most interesting addition to the life coaching process. Wojcicki’s democratizing DNA had to be read several times to see how the idea of democratizing was operating. CEO Wojcicki of 23andMe was the first to offer an FDA-approved home genetic cancer risk test for $199. What I now understand is that democratizing is GlaxoSmithKline becoming the latest pharma partner, leveraging users’ anonymous genetic data to develop new drugs. Finally, Dr. Leana Wen fighting the politics of medicine is Time’s center entry outlining her fight against the Trump Administration proposed changes to funding Planned Parenthood.

These are all interesting efforts but especially diet and therapy as they are closer to what we can become personally involved in. However, we must realize that Trump and his Republican raiders are now actively dismantling these programs! Michael Lewis’s newest book The Fifth Risk details Trump’s  Administration carnage.

Imagine now, we see the advancing hordes from South Americans descending on our southern border and Trump orders DNA testing. This is expensive and time-consuming and when it is completed the results indicate that Trump is the father of 12 genetically different children. Trump lies tweeting that he was only grabbing. Sanders then announces it was the “holy ghost” that impregnated these maidens. Accepting immaculate conception, Saint Michael Pence leads the charge on the Walls of Democracy not aware that his inner Jericho Walls are disintegrating. Now, imagine writing about this next, I am looking forward to my dreams tonight!

10.26.2018 9:00am cst
I posted this blog entry Imagine The Strength to Dream last night and then this morning Joe on M.JoeShow talked about the hordes marching on the US’s southern border saying only 12 are in this dangerous threatening horde. These 12 were mentioned in this Blog post yesterday and this is synchronistic. I am now adding this experience to this Blog entry and am concerned about Pence’s inner walls of Jericho – he seems to be in danger and listening to Celldweller’s Deluxe Edition “End of an Empire” my concern extends beyond Pence to Trump ending the American empire’s experiment with ‘democracy’. TGIF, enjoy the weekend mulling this over, a few beers…

End of an Empire

Good L_ck (Yo_’re F_cked)

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Listening With The Third Ear

I recently retrieved from my bedroom bookcase Theodor Reik’s book Listening With The Third Ear and began re-reading Chapter 18 Insight. Reik is a Freudian psychoanalyst, trained by Freud, and the 3rd Ear is a skill of a psychoanalyst listening consciously and unconsciously – how the analysand’s conscious and unconscious are being communicated is the subject of his book. The first part of this chapter details the specific operation of how the 3rd ear listens and then Reik follows with two case studies illustrating the operation of 3rd ear listening. Reik’s operationalization of the processes of insight is developed elsewhere and here I wanted to cite a passage that caught my attention as it mirrors a contemporary experience unfolding with Brett Kavanaugh’s interview for a position on the Supreme Court.

Dr. Reik writes this about the first case he presents: “Everything he said that seemed logical and sound, clear and consistent.  Nevertheless, the presence in me of vague but decisive feelings suggested that factors other than those of the reality-situation were responsible for his state of mind.  There were also a few inconsistencies or slight inaccuracies in his tale.  Imponderable impressions indicated that his grief, genuine and sincere as it was, came from some other source.  When he tried to prove to me that the report of a building commission came to certain conclusions in guarded terms his argumentation, though persuasive, was not convincing.  His own statements at this point seemed somewhat ‘reached’ as a scriptwriter would say.
   His yarn was good but there were little imperfections in it, slight unevenness not apparent to the eye but perceptible to testing hands that glide slowly and carefully over the fabric.  Small imperfections caused by the twisting of the threads are known as ‘slubs’ to textile experts.  For there were a few slubs in his otherwise perfect argument.  Other inconspicuous features that elude description suggested that unconscious factors had a share in his depression (193).
… Those minute unevennesses, those small inadequacies I had noted at the beginning, paved the way for the reconstruction of the emotional processes, but it was actually made possible by psychological clues that seemed very remote from the scene, by causal remarks the patient made and treated as if they were irrelevant. It seems to me that the analyst must differentiate between psychological facts and psychological clues. Facts are the data that are known and fully acknowledged as to their significance for the origin and motivation of the emotional process under observation. Clues are material of a special kind, whose importance has not yet been examined and whose significance is not immediately clear. Such clues can contribute much to the solution of a problem. Facts help us to figure out; clues help us to discover things that were always there but that we did not see. Facts are to be used consciously; clues have to be found. Facts appeal to our powers of reason and reflection; clues evoke responses from our imagination (emphasis added). Facts are connected with solid knowledge; clues are related to hunches. Facts give us intellectual security; clues arouse suspense in the realm of thought and ideas” (196).

I have emphasized the word imagination as it operates in Reik’s theory as an aspect of insight, which needs to be carefully unwrapped. This also is done elsewhere in order to see if Reik’s imaginative-insight method can be applied to the collective experience taking place in the Trump-Kavanaugh happening. To begin, we close our eyes and meditate on what surfaces: disappointment, embarrassment, shock, shameful, pathetic, sad, worried, and on and on. These might be identified as psychological facts of what is happening. What are the psychological cues in this happening? The clues that arouse suspense might be: were Trump and Kavanaugh psychologically or physically abused as a child, raised by an alcoholic parent, sexually molested, were there other significant traumatic ordeals in their lives. The issue of inappropriate sexual behavior is a common theme in Kavanaugh and Trump’s lives – is it a psychological cue, raising a hunch, arousing suspense in what is hiding.

At his point, I listened, took notes to The New School event “Foreshadowing the Present: The Legacies of Theodor Reik” (Seven Parts) co-sponsored by the departments of Social Sciences of The New School for General Studies, and The National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis, founded in 1948 by Reik. The event was devoted to exploring the impact of Reik’s work on the current state of diverse psychoanalytic theories, and their major controversies. Participants include doctors Otto Kernberg, Harold Blum, Martin Bergman, Jeremy Safran, Anna Aragno, and Dany Nobus. Carl Jacobs, NPAP program chair, moderates the event. I have let this foreshadowing of the present settle and slowly allow myself to sense clues reaching out to me.

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 1 | The New School

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 2 | The New School

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 3 | The New School

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 4 | The New School

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 5 | The New School

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 6 | The New School

The Legacies of Theodor Reik Part 7 | The New School

Whew, getting through this was a task – a very interesting one! The first issue presented is the way Reik facilitates an analytical session. It is described as “unconscious to unconscious communication”, which is said to address a gap between theory and practice. Intuition is important, with empathy and trust key factors operating as they are in authentic relationships. Jeremy Safran points out that “ongoing reflections on one’s own associations while they are working in order to understand the patient is an unconscious communication between patient and analyst. Analysts’ “use their own associations and the subjective aspect of the relationship as a source of information”. Can we make an effort to sense the ‘unconscious’ that is present in our Kavanaugh experience 10/5/2018 5:55 am cst.

As we watched and listened to reflections on Kavanagh’s behavior we heard the psychoanalytical terms sociopath and narcissist describing his behavior. Each of these pathologies can be used to gain insight into both Kavanagh and Trump – two peas in a pod. However, in the Legacies of Theodor Reik sessions, we have the psychological pathology of masochism addressed. The full concept is Sadomasochism, which “is the giving or receiving pleasure from acts involving the receipt or infliction of pain or humiliation. Practitioners of sadomasochism may seek sexual gratification from their acts. While the terms sadist and masochist refer respectively to one who enjoys giving or receiving pain, practitioners of sadomasochism may switch between activity and passivity” (Wikipedia). The psychological clue now reaching out is that Kavanaugh and Trump have engaged in whipping women and probably being whipped by women.

Reik ends his insight chapter imploring that if this thought “proves valuable when we take it up again and subject it to examination, the requirements of analysis demand that we should, so to speak, let it sound till it fades away spontaneously. To get hold of an unconscious thought or emotion is only one part of the analytic process. To follow it, to observe its consequences, reverberations, and repercussions in the unconscious life of the person is the other part. It is important not to lose the thread one has a hold of. We shall then, certainly, allow the conscious intellectual effort to play a great part in following slowly and carefully, the further intellectual possibilities thus emerging. At the same time, it will not be possible to dispense entirely with the co-operation of the analyst’s unconscious. We might compare this pursuit of our own idea to the end, with the manner of bowing on the violin called molto sostenuto” (213). I hope the  Senate committee votes to reject Kavanagh so, we will not have to be further concerned with his life. Trump, however, is another very serious worry we will still have.

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