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Stoner Thoughts #4

As much as I express scepticism about religion, I do actually like it. It serves a purpose, and it does help a lot of people. But, if the theory of it being a “software” means of organising masses of people to improve survivability, then it appears that many of the mainstream religions have reached a roadblock of how far they can progress. This is because the rules and guidance they provide no longer marry up to a technologically driven world.

             Although they had their evident flaws, old school religions do something that the modern replacements (e.g. Marxism, liberalism, humanism, capitalism, post-modernism, woke-ism) don’t bother trying to tackle, and that is trying to create a bigger picture. The old school creators had serious imagination. I mean, humanism is just humans are great. Marxism is just workers are great. And so on. That’s all pretty low-level in comparison to “there’s this big dude up there who made everything! Like, EVERYTHING! And this super powerful being, well, it cares about you.

             I know some people say science should belong into such a bag of religious-type beliefs, but it’s just a tool, it doesn’t give meaning (although it can help people find it), and you can’t organise people by proving dark matter exists or having an equation that would say “42 is the answer!” That being said, it’s the science that has been the pain in the arse for all these religions, even the newer ones. Like humanism, it barely takes any research to show that humans are not as great or individual as we like to pretend we are. While with the old school ones, the list of inaccuracies is a hell of a lot longer as they try to tackle many nuances in life.

             Why can’t we just ditch all high-level belief and get through life? Well, that seems to go against human nature. This need for a higher level of belief appears to be something ingrained into ourselves; forcing ourselves to think otherwise doesn’t seem to work. People are fucking miserable without a sense of purpose, and I think that’s palpably clear. There is an innate want for meaning and to be a part of something bigger. It’s biologically imprinted into us because that need allowed us to be better social animals, which made us better survivors. So, because of this, I sometimes think that the world needs a new religion. It would need to help give people the ultimate meaning to want a better world and help guide human development with rules that can evolve through time, like a software that can continually update to allow adaptation to an ever-changing environment. So, what I keep on ending up with during these stoner thoughts is that what’s needed is a belief that can combine the practical with the ultimate purposeful. I try to guess what this could be in my books. An example is that it’s humanity’s purpose to create God.

             As weird as it sounds, there are some sound structures to such a belief. It’s a belief about the future, so you can’t disprove it. It’s a big and fucking lofty ideal that is ultra-purposeful. You can’t get more meaning than that:

             “Hi, Tim. What are you up to today?”

             “Hi, Mr Tiddlywinks. I’m just trying to help facilitate the creation of God.”

             It’s a belief that would not regress or go against human/technological development as the whole purpose of the view relies on such progress. Also, any developed rules for it can pragmatically change with whatever the environment throws. Of course, that goes to the potential risk of such a belief; it’s the ultimate “ends justify the means” type of thinking. You’d be able to convince yourself that you could do anything at all, as long as it could be justified as helping humanity reach Godhood. You could quite easily imagine that life would become more than expendable, as long as such a goal was achieved as human life is insignificant compared to a god’s.

             Then again, I could be completely wrong, and maybe we should focus on the low-level thought and keep it basic. The human brain can help model this. One neuron in our brain has basic functions, and there is no complexity in thought derived from it. When you have 86 billion of them, it’s another matter, and somehow sentience is derived from it. These are all interlinked with around 32 trillions cells, trillions of bacteria, and the external environment. All of which helps us become conscious beings. If all those neurons were far more complex, competent, and got fucking uppity with each other, then consciousness would be far too chaotic to function. So perhaps, the actual opposite is needed. Maybe we’re supposed to regress into efficient automatons, so that individually we’re pointless, but when amassed with billions of others, we can coordinate to create a conscious superorganism somehow.

             Also, maybe no reason or purpose is needed for us as our transformation to this state is simply a natural process that’s fixed into us like a seed that germinates. Maybe any thought or reason that we attach to our lives and civilisations are just pointless noise whilst this fixed process takes place. We could believe in an omnipotent Spaghetti Monster or Jesus, and it would be irrelevant as our fate would be fixed.

             The annoying part, I can keep expanding on such thoughts but it’ll ultimately lead no where as such big questions can never be answered with such a small computer (the human brain). So, ultimately, I have no fucking clue. Even so, it’s pretty damn entertaining and fun to think about such big things as it’s like creating a story. Also, I can’t help but feel life would be far blander if I thought I had all the answers.

             Anyway, that’s enough stoner thoughts from me! I’m starting to feel peckish 🙂 .

Stoner Thoughts #3

One of you guys was kind enough to email me an article about some research which indicated monotheistic/moralistic religions emerging soon after complex societies started to develop. Such beliefs are, of course, greatly intertwined into our cultural perceptions of good and evil. It was quite an interesting read, and it indicated that potentially such beliefs rose-up to help complex societies coordinate and cooperate. Others have posited similar things in other books I’ve read, so it was nice to see some of the research attached to it. If anyone wants me to email across the article, I’ll be more than happy to oblige.

Anyhow, back to Fiorella, good, and evil.

In my last post, I rambled that it wasn’t that long ago that humans acted in a way that today’s society would perceive as total cunts. On a cunt-o-odometer, we’d find that we’re still hovering over that said region, albeit just less so than we used to. However, perhaps we are only in the eye of the storm, and it won’t be long until we head back to our old ways. I think even people with the smallest of imaginations would realise it wouldn’t take much for people to froth at the mouth and wish for bloody murder. Fucking hell, it only takes Facebook or Twitter posts from trolls to get people to such a level. So, you have to wonder, how would people act if some serious shit went down?

If society is that fragile, then you need systems in place that keep it ticking, keep it from going all Mad Max (hey, at least if it does, then I can wear my bondage gear out in public without causing an upset). This is where I think, devising a new and workable morality (good/evil) plays a role in developing workable systems for society. With morality being man-made and simply a set of evolving societal agreements, means that people can/should seek to derive new sets of complex group rules to create a more robust society that benefits more people than just the small elite few.

This is where I get on my tin-foil hat and say those in power who benefit from antiquated systems, want those below to think such systems cannot change and are derived from higher powers (e.g. God, the market, communism etc). They use their version of good and evil to keep their means to control/exploit. They will use ideology and repeat such mantras. These pricks might have different ideologies, but they’re just the same power-hungry piece of shit who’re just wearing different colours.

So, there’s no such thing as morality, and the world has plenty of elitist pricks all vying for control while quoting bullshit mantras from their own orthodoxy. What’s the fucking point then? Well, this is where I slick back my hair, put on my salesmen smile and say…welcome to the Church of Little Dog, where we live beyond such petty grievances. Just fucking with you. All I know is that the current systems we have in place are broken and benefit a minority who only know how to take. Also, my belief is that the purpose of this evolving set of group agreements for conduct stems from a unified need that we all share, the need for our genes to survive and spread, as working in such a large group ultimately benefitted our survivability.

Anyhow, that’s enough crazy talk from me (kids, this is what happens when you take too many drugs!). My next email / blog-post I’d like to talk about stoner guesses in how to utilise this innate need derived from our genes to develop a sense of morality that can evolve and cope with technological development.

Stoner Thoughts #2

More ramblings from me. Because I don’t get to talk about such things in real life and it gives me the opportunity to make my books sound smarter than they actually are. However, I’ll also update on the book writing front. I think I should be able to finish the first draft of Book 3 late Nov to mid-Dec. Anyhow, back to me rambling. 

Good and evil, one side must be good and the other evil. Of course, whatever side I favour is good and the other evil. You have to believe something like this otherwise how could you ever do things like shitting on your obnoxious neighbour’s rose bush—it’s advised not to do this drunk— or do the even more heinous, like murder?

We’ll stick with discussing the act of murder, as I’m sure people don’t want a philosophical rambling about using defecating as a means to piss your neighbours off, and because killing is the viewed as one of the worst things a human can do.

War is an easy murderous example when it comes to the discrepancies of good and evil. Both sides, of course, believe they’re fighting for the side of good. It is then the victor who writes the history and forces the doctrine that the loser was evil. Please, watch the documentary The Act Of Killing for a prime example of this. But, that is then, and this is now, a period where mass violence and wars are at a global low. So, perhaps that means there is an understanding that murder, any type of murder, is more and more seen as an evil action, no matter the reasoning. Perhaps a point is being reached where even the victor’s version of history is being challenged.

With the change in attitudes towards murder, the argument could be that the act has always been evil, and we are simply becoming more and more self-aware of this. But, if you really want to get pedantic, no matter what, we are still murderers in some shape or form as we’re killing lifeforms right now with our immune system. It’s a system built for fucking up invaders, and it has badass henchmen like the Natural Killer Cells. Less frivolously and more contentiously, there is, of course, eating meat, which involves regular murder. So when it comes to killing that is more likely to be seen as evil, it is generally attached to humans and whatever lifeforms we incorporate into our own little tribes (e.g. pets). However, that just further highlights the subjectivity of connecting evil to the act itself.

This change in attitude to murder is incredibly brand new when you look at it historically. Thousands of years, we were more than happy to kill another if we felt it was in the name of good (for ourselves or for the tribe). Then suddenly, in a blink of an eye, we’ve changed our minds and gone against the grain of nature and our historical upbringing.

If I was to think of how Fiorella would think about such development, she would talk about our most base of instincts, the will to survive. She would say our ability to survive has become far more effective, and this is why our perspective of good and evil has changed. As our survivability and perspective of our survivability has changed, so have what we rationalise as good and evil. Our actions change and adapt to the systems we put in place to benefit the person/group/society/nation, then the cultural doctrine of good/evil is used to explain it after. If that is the case, then good and evil simply does not exist, and are only a means to justify propagating the genetic code and ensuring it lives on. That is where I try to expand this line of thinking with Fiorella, to bring it to such absurd lengths where she sees it as the ultimate purpose and one which is needed to face the reality that everything (universe included) will die. 

Easy come, easy go…these systems came into place in a blink of an eye, they can disappear even quicker, as it’s always easier to destroy than it is to build. 

That is something which I will ramble on about in my next post/email. 

Stoner Thoughts #1

I wanted to touch on some of the themes and points raised in my books. I’ve had some pretty interesting discussions with readers about some of these points, so I figure I might as well bring them to my mailing list/blog and make it a regular thing. I always wanted to use fiction as a vehicle to bring up some of these thoughts and feelings. Feel free to email me back counterpoints and your beliefs. Also, these are JUST ramblings, not an academic paper, so please don’t expect much.

Does Good and Evil Exist?
As weird and as batshit crazy my books are, one of the things I want to try and convey is the subjectivity when it comes to things like good and evil. Let me start by saying my actual work involves helping people and ensuring that they can live the best possible lives, it’s work that I’ve done for the past 10 years. I’ve also done a lot of voluntary work for those who are vulnerable. That disclaimer is just so you know I am not a total arsehole and although I play with such thoughts, they do not play a major influence on how I live 🙂

I don’t believe in good and evil. I don’t believe that they exist. There isn’t actually anything concrete that can be attributed to such terminology unless it is within the realms of human societal interpretations. I’ll raise some points of why I think this in emails that I will send, but I will start with: 

The Animal Kingdom: Animal’s, insects, and microbes, they do some really fucked up things to each other. Like REALLY fucked up things. Infanticide and eating your own young isn’t even the worst of it. For example, look up the Jewel Wasp. This bad boy (well, bad lady), finds a victim (a cockroach), injects it with mind control venom. Guides it back to its nest, then lays eggs into the insect. The eggs hatch, eat the cockroach, leaving its nervous system until last, so the poor bastard feels every little thing. Then you can look at the amount of death and devastation that microbes cause. Thing is, we think this planet is ours when it is the microbes. We exist because they exist (I’ve been reading Bill Bryson’s book about the human body. A lot of ‘HOLY SHIT’ moments), and pound for pound there is far more of them than us. So the norm of this planet is lifeforms doing fucked up and “evil” shit to other lifeforms.

When we look at such animal/microbial behaviours, we see them as innate traits and quite normal for a species. We don’t actually see such behaviours as evil. So what makes us so different that our behaviours can be viewed as good or evil? We are more complex, but if something more advanced were to observe us (like Little Dog and Satan), would they see us as to how we view animals/microbes? If good and evil can be viewed in such different ways, then does that mean it is just a subjective human construct?

I will expand more on this in subsequent emails. Next one I’ll talk about what actions we view as “evil”. I like the Voltaire quote that helps with the understanding of this:

“It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets”.

If I get some good feedback about such emails/posts, I’ll carry them on.  Anyhow, drop me an email if you want to talk about ‘Good and Evil’.