Good morning. We meet again…. What? Who is Emma? Oh, just a lovely young cat I met, while off playing in the BBR this last week…. She’s a peach, for sure. But, since we have much to do, we’ll leave Emma to go chasing her lizards, and get on with our business….
Shall we Pearl?
“Beyond a critical point within a finite space, freedom diminishes as numbers increase. . . . the human question is not how many can possibly survive within the system, but what kind of existence is possible for those who do survive.” — Frank Herbert, Dune
Today’s video selection is a concert, from 1991, by two string instrument virtuosos, who played for a long time together. Their first album together, called Old And In The Way, which is what they called their two-man group for a while, changing it to Grateful Dawg later on. Together, they gave us some of the finest music of the twentieth century…. Enjoy!….
Jerry Garcia & David Grisman
“The effects which follow too constant and intense a concentration upon evil are always disastrous. Those who crusade, not _for_ God in themselves, but _against_ the devil in others, never succeed in making the world better, but leave it either as it was, or sometimes even perceptibly worse than it was, before the crusade began. By thinking primarily of evil we tend, however excellent our intentions, to create occasions for evil to manifest itself.” — Aldous Huxley — The Devils of Loudun
I’ve seen, and probably used, this quote previously, to act as the centerpiece of a rant…. I’m not quite ready to write any fresh ones, so, again, here is the piece created for the first time this situation occurred here on ECR…. Don’t fret, ffolkes, it’s a short, but, pithy one, not a long, passionate one….. No drama today…. Well, no huge drama, anyway….
“I have often wondered how it is that every man loves himself more than all the rest of men, but yet sets less value on his own opinions of himself than on the opinions of others.” — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
See? There, now, I’ve been saying this for years, and here’s old Marcus Aurelius, that Roman cogitator extraordinaire, putting it straight out there way back around the time of J.C.’s failed attempt at societal reform. A very cogent, yet poignant description of human nature and the preponderance of Ego that drives most of humanity to act out of their own ignorance, rather than consider the veracity or usefulness of someone else’s ideas. This format for stating this answer to one of the great questions is one that all the best philosophers choose when creating aphorisms; clear, simple language and brutally honest self-examination provide us with true wisdom, like it or not……
What particularly gets me about people at large is the high percentage of folks who fall into the trap that Ego sets; for some reason, people seem to prefer the cozy blindness with which ignorance can cover them to the cold, harsh light of self-knowledge. The very ego that sets them apart from the rest of the animals who inhabit this planet becomes also the greatest threat to survival, when it is allowed to dictate how one views reality.
The state of society in today’s world rests on the brink of total collapse; any number of issues currently in play in the world can lead us to upheaval unseen since the last Ice Age. Pollution, created by mankind, is pumping tons of carbon monoxide into the air every minute, and all those precipitates are eventually bound to cause changes to climate that we will have no power to stop, or reverse.
The economy of the world is constantly on the verge of collapse in these times, due mostly to the unacknowledged crimes of the 1% of mankind who controls 99% of the money and resources. These crimes arise, again, out of Ego, as the elite of the world believe that they are “different” from the rest of humanity, and deserve to make all the decisions, which oddly enough, are only beneficial to themselves….. again, the power of Ego trumps virtue…..
I’m a smart guy, pretty much, but this is a problem for which even I cannot find a solution, other than the age-old, time-worn, and always ineffective war between the classes. That solution has been tried innumerable times throughout history, and each time the same structure of society re-settles into the same old shape, with a few people at the top, making all the important decisions for the rest of humanity. All because we, as individuals, and as a species, cannot learn to control our ego, to persuade it to act for the benefit of all, rather than just looking out for itself….. I figure that whatever happens will be what we deserve, and I can’t say that I think it will be very pretty, for the species….. or for a lot of individuals…..
Maybe there is a solution…. as a matter of fact, there is one that has been around for as long as mankind has been writing stuff down…. and it’s always the same little piece of advice, a little idea that can change one’s entire life and world-view….. but only if it is accepted, and believed, and applied to reality…… Everybody knows this, but, how many actually live it?…..
“Do unto all as you would wish to have done unto you, and reject for others what you would reject for yourself.” — Mohammed
That’s right, the Golden Rule…. a basic tenet of EVERY philosophy that Mankind has ever formulated; even most religions will acknowledge the wisdom of this, though it doesn’t serve their interests as well as they would wish. But, throughout history, we have always known what is the right way to act…. we’ve just always chosen not to apply the principle in interacting with others…. Instead, we allow our ego to dictate how we behave, thus bringing us to the current world, with all of its problems and dangers…..
SIGH….. It’s really quite easy, and it’s the only answer that will work, in the long run. It really is too bad that most of humanity isn’t buying into it, isn’t it?……
leave marks of salvation, often in pain.
Such sharp reminders of yesterday’s remorse
fight heavily to keep a straight course.
Rash moments, bright, and routinely immense
Give us pleasure, bereft of common sense.
Still the night comes soft and eternally dear
to bring out wishful dreams so vitally clear.
Life’s myrmidons give freely in protest
lifting with skill, soul pieces first to infest,
Loudly brash, with no such voices to remain
Sealed in infamy, branded ugliness all too plain.
Now come brave signs of chapter and verse
Shielded by ignorance, irritable and terse.
Gravid portions of in-between retaliation
leave only pale marks of initial gestation
With hope even pallid warriors grow brave
Leading all humanity, to a warm, stale grave.
Hope never falters, nor leaves any trace
Yet lingers forever in a welcoming space.
Cheerful faces yet shine out of time
for tricking and fumbling sweet melody sublime.
Fill in the spaces with a long, strong retort
life is ever visible, if only as last resort.
~~ gigoid ~~
The very first time I failed to post a Pearl, after beginning in August of 2011, was on 9/14/2012. Since I missed a few days here in 2015, (though yesterday was not one of those…), I went back to find the pearl I first created back in the day, on the occasion of my first failure to post…. This is one of the offerings from that day’s Pearl…. It’s a good one, so, you won’t be missing out on anything you might otherwise have seen today…. Got that?…. Good, because I’m totally confused…..
Here is an old-school pearl, using quotes from fairly famous people….. and some not so famous outside SF fandom. All of the quotes, when co-mingled and mixed up like a smoothie, will give you a really good philosophy of life, and lots of good advice for living with a serene mind….. good luck!….
“He who knows does not speak, He who speaks does not know.” — Lao Tzu
Water wears the rock — Smart Bee
“Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship.” — Buddha
“Human beings do not survive on bread alone … but on the nourishments of liberty. For what indeed is a man without freedom … naught but a mechanism, trapped in the cogwheels of eternity.” — Harry Mudd, “I, Mudd,” stardate 4513.3.
“Virtue is the golden mean between two vices, the one of excess and the other of deficiency.” — Aristotle (B.C. 384-322)
“Being a woman is a terribly difficult task, since it consists principally in dealing with men.” — Joseph Conrad
“Yeah, but you’re taking the universe out of context.” — Smart Bee
There, see how painless that was? You’ll never even know you’ve been enlightened, until you wake up in the middle of the night, mumbling something about “he who speaks….”….. Onward into the fray!….
Gosh! Will you look at that? It’s a Pearl….. Moreover, it’s done. Wow, Moms, look what I found….
Okay, I’ll stop. But, it’s all true, so, we’ll fly with it. Besides, what else can I do with a finished Pearl, but, post it? Nothing, that’s what. So, I’ll go do that, and, when you’re done reading all this nonsense, you can do that, too…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, should the Universe decide to give me one more break….
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
and everyone else, too…
When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.
Which is Why….
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.
gigoid, the dubious
The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.
PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.
“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch
À bientôt, mon cherí….