Friday, November 25, 2005


I get great amusement out of all these calls to transcendent action, whether Christian or Buddhist, calls to action with noble purpose or so clear of my humanity as to be devoid of purpose. How can any action be free of purpose since it must take place with the body's purpose even if only the purposes of the body to pee and to poop? For I am but a man, with the weakness of the frail, human man, and the unquenchable desires born of my biological nature. Philosophy and religion are always trying to make us poor humans commit ourselves to a pie in the sky dream of behavior.

Sounds hopeless to some, I imagine, yet, I think we do have a chance to clean up our acts, but we shall never clean them up until we cast aside morality and begin to consider the science of behavior. When we can ask and answer, "Is selfishness a moral dilemma or a scientific problem," then we can finally start to get to the bottom of my bottom and the breast of her breast.

[OPEN QUOTE] "Indeed, the BHAGAVAD GITA itself, as a chapter of this warrior epic [MAHABHARATA], is in aim and content a lecture of encouragement to a young prince afflicted with a qualm of conscience before giving the signal of battle, to free his mind from all sense of grief and guilt in killing. 'For that which is born, death is certain,' he is told; 'and for that which is dead, birth is certain. You should not grieve over the unavoidable.... The Supreme Self, which dwells in all bodies, can never be slain.' 'Weapons cut it not; fire burns it not; water wets it not; the wind does not wither it. Eternal, universal, unchanging, unmovable, the Self is the same forever.'

"'... Dwelling in all bodies, the Self can never be slain. Therefore you should not grieve for any creature.'

"And that, in sum, is the ultimate ground, in Oriental thinking, of all peace. In the field of action—which is to say, in life—there is no peace, and there can never be. The formula, then, for the attainment of peace is to act, as one must, but without attachment. 'Being established in yoga;' the young warrior prince Arjuna of the GITA is taught, 'perform your actions, casting off attachment and remaining even-minded, both in success and in failure. This evenness is what is called yoga. And far inferior is mere action to action performed with this evenness of mind. Seek refuge in this evenness. Wretched are all who work for results. Endued with evenness of mind, one casts off in this very life both good deeds and evil deeds. Strive, therefore, for yoga. Yoga is skill in action.'" [CLOSE QUOTE]

(from MYTHS TO LIVE BY, Campbell, pp. 201-02)


from HOUSE OF CARDS by Robyn Dawes, p. 104:

"A colleague of mine in medical decision making tells of an investigation he was asked to make by the dean of a large and prestigious medical school to try to determine why it was unsuccessful in recruiting female students. My colleague studied the problem statistically “from the outside” and identified a major source of the problem. One of the older professors had cut back on his practice to devote time to interviewing applicants to the school. He assessed such characteristics as “emotional maturity,” “seriousness of interest in medicine,” and “neuroticism.” Whenever he interviewed an unmarried female applicant, he concluded she was “immature.” When he interviewed a married one, he concluded she was “not sufficiently interested in medicine,” and when he interviewed a divorced one, he concluded she was “neurotic.” Not many women were positively evaluated on these dimensions, which of course had nothing to do with gender."


I got this out of my current NEWSWEEK: "I'm the one who presented it to the world, and [it] will always be a part of my record. It was painful. It is painful now." —Colin Powell telling Babara Walters how he feels after giving the 2003 speech to the UN which pursuaded many countries to support America's invasion of Iraq.

He's an outcast now, in the Republican Party and among decent people of the world. Persons with integrity ought to stay away from the fascisti in the Republican/fundamentalist Party. Come on over, Colin, and join the Democrats or Independents or Greens. We know just how you're feeling. The Republican Party is a real ripe smelling bunch of bad fish, and you should break free of them.

"The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you're hungry again." —George Miller

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