Fearless Reason

Fearless reason in an age of frightened absurdity.

Month: November, 2015

Into the Void

Occasionally I break the cardinal rule of anyone who values their sanity and peace of mind; I read the comments section of news articles. An while it can be a jarring and disheartening experience, I encourage you to do the same.

It reminds me that I have the privilege of living a manicured life. Over the years I have cultivated a circle of friends that I both cherish and enjoy, and have meticulously groomed my social media feeds to the point that everything I see is thoughtful, informative, or uplifting. As a result I have attained an artificial sense of the world being comprised primarily of thoughtful and intelligent people with good intentions.

Then I stare into the void of the comments section, and all my pretty illusions crumble like gossamer in a fire. The depth of the fear, hate, ignorance, and hysteria I see varies depending on the news source, but is always quantifiably present. What world do these people live in I wonder, surely it is not the same as mine. Who are these aliens that have such drastically different understandings of science, morality, and justice?

Then I take it a step further, and visit these aliens on their home worlds. In a click, I am on their social media profiles, looking at pictures, prior posts, and their self-identifiers. These aliens are human after all. They have families they love, friends, jobs, hobbies and passions.

They are human and we share a common Earth, but their manicured world is much different than mine. Their faces have a lot in common, old, white, and working class. Much like the family I love, but studiously avoid discussing politics and religion with. In these moments I feel empathy for even the most vicious troll. I am reminded that we are not so different after all, and that only time and education divide us.

As Thanksgiving approaches many of us will be seeing relatives who may or may not be like the comments trolls that degrade our faith in humanity. Perhaps this year, it would be useful to seek to further understand your similarities, instead of just avoiding your differences. You may not agree on politics and religion, but you’ll certainly have more empathy for these aliens at the dinner table.

 

 

Common Madness

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In the wake of the Paris attacks I have thought a lot about the madmen waging war on humanity. Many have adopted the mantra, do unto others as they do unto you. These warmongers in the West have made bellicose calls for war and vengeance, urging us to meet death with death, and terror with terror. These same voices call us to turn our backs on the refugees fleeing terror, choosing to paint victim and madman alike.

My heart breaks for humanity. My pain is for Paris, the refugees, warmongers, and madmen. We are one people, sharing a common humanity. We are citizens of Earth, and the problems of one are the problems of all. The same evil animates terrorists and right wing warmongers. I see the same lack of empathy and compassion. The same disregard and vilification of other-self. Both possess the erroneous notion that it is ever justifiable to kill, maim, and terrorize others. Both degrade the other to an object or demon, that must be exterminated and wiped from the face of the Earth. Never realizing they make war upon self.

The warmonger and terrorist are twin souls, infected by the same delusions. Neither will be exterminated until the delusion that justifies their behavior dies. War and terror will end when we start treating others as we would have them treat us, and recognize that harm to others is harm to self.

There are madmen among us waging war on humanity. They are terrorists waging jihad, and Western politicians making bellicose calls for war and vengeance. It is a common madness, that will end only when we recognize our selves in others. It will end, when we stop meeting violence and death in kind.

Family of Orphaned Souls

I want to get a house together, and invite all our friends. Lets make a world together, not just a home. We will grow what we eat, and need nothing more. We’ll have dinners past midnight, and conversations that last years. We will invite all our soul mates, and make a family of orphaned souls. We’ll make a village, and call it our home.

We will remedy this modern sickness, of isolation and fear. We’ll wage war on balkanized hearts and minds. We will find ourselves in one another. We’ll know we’re not alone. We will have a village, and call it our home. We’ll read books and share stories, and find comfort in tribe. We will learn together, and replace flickering screens with shinning eyes.

We will rediscover humanity, and find it in our home.

Sold, Traded, Exchanged

Infinite,
Yet scarce.

Precious,
Yet wasted.

Sold,
For,
Promises.

Traded,
For,
Tomorrow.

Exchanged,
For,
Happiness,
Security,
Prestige.

Present,
Forfeit.

Future,
Speculated.

Certain,
Present,
Gambled.

For,
What,
Might,
Be.

Alone Together

Alone together.

Thoughts trapped in bodies,
Seeking expression,
Finding meaning.

Thoughts,
Sounding,
Moving.

Seeking understanding.

Thoughts trapped in bodies,
Seeking thoughts,
Finding bodies.

Alone together,
Thoughts,
Imperfectly understood.

What is in you,
What is in me,
Is it the same.

Alone together.

Thoughts,
Seeking,
Thoughts,
Finding,
Bodies.

Seeking connection.

Thoughts,
Seeking,
Thoughts.

Bodies,
Alone,
Together.

Eyes,
Finding,
Eyes.

Fingers,
Pecking,
Scratching,
Meaning.

Alone,
Together.

Finding,
Thoughts,
Within bodies.

Heart Beats

Ceasing hearts.
Ceaseless minds.

Heart beats,
Beating in a maelstrom.

Sustaining,
Unbidden,
Restless minds.

Heart beats,
Wandering.

Seeking,
Hearts,
Minds.

Heart beats,
Pumping.

Pushing,
Onward,
Ceaseless minds.

Dead Hands

Bound by dead hands, we follow our captures to their graves. Pulled by convention – pushed by inertia. We travel well worn paths, ceaselessly following our predecessors’ footsteps. We are hoarders, clinging desperately to the useful and useless alike, unable to discern treasure from trash.

Look with fresh eyes at what dead hands have wrought.