Deeper truth about politics

A place to bring a contemplative / Dharmic perspective and opinions to current events and politics.
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Sam Vara
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Deeper truth about politics

Post by Sam Vara » Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:18 pm

David Reynolds sharing some thoughts about the radical political impulse in general, as opposed to specific ideological demands:
So lately, people are agitating and protesting and rioting for “progressive reform,” which for all they know wouldn’t even work if they got it. There are some people who aren’t even chronically messed up, and who weren’t even brainwashed in the Liberal Arts department of a university, who naturally assume that a globalist socialist welfare state would be a significant giant step in the general direction of Utopia. But Utopia can be found, if anywhere at all, only within one’s own mind. Habitual malcontents will never find Paradise or anything resembling it, regardless of political or economic systems, or anything else external. Rather than try to change eight billion others, just change yourself—or just observe yourself with some introspection, and learn something.
https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blog ... tence.html

I ought to add that exactly the same applies to the mobilisation of conservative and reactionary sentiments, although he does tend to downplay that aspect.

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binocular
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by binocular » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:07 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:18 pm
David Reynolds sharing some thoughts about the radical political impulse in general, as opposed to specific ideological demands:
1. Most people aren't educated enough to appreciate the complexity of psychosocial and economical processes and factors, so they think that the solution to the world's problems should be pretty easy.
2. Our old friend, the Dunning-Krüger effect makes sure that people remain unable to see the error of their ways.
3. Even without the DKE, the prospect of complexity is so daunting to, probably, most people, that they have to deny it, because the difficulty associated with attempting to solve complex problems is overwhelming for them.

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binocular
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by binocular » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:15 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:18 pm
So lately, people are agitating and protesting and rioting for “progressive reform,” which for all they know wouldn’t even work if they got it. There are some people who aren’t even chronically messed up, and who weren’t even brainwashed in the Liberal Arts department of a university, who naturally assume that a globalist socialist welfare state would be a significant giant step in the general direction of Utopia. But Utopia can be found, if anywhere at all, only within one’s own mind. Habitual malcontents will never find Paradise or anything resembling it, regardless of political or economic systems, or anything else external. Rather than try to change eight billion others, just change yourself—or just observe yourself with some introspection, and learn something.
https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blog ... tence.html
This is where Mr. Reynolds lets us down.
Simply by observing oneself, one doesn't learn anything. Just like life doesn't teach lessons.
If introspection would in itself lead to something, all the Freudians and their psychoanalysis patients would be enlightened.

If Mr. Reynolds says things like this --
People can be happy in totalitarian dictatorships, or alone with no money, no food, and no friends in a wilderness (although if one is starving, or one’s baby is starving, or one is in a torture chamber, then naturally it’s very much more difficult)
then he needs to explain, on the spot, how one can be happy under such circumstances, or else he deserves to be accused of the same shallow political, utopian rioting that he's accusing others of.

Every dimwitted self-help, life-hacks blog writes things like that -- "Rather than try to change eight billion others, just change yourself". And some even offer up some ideas on how to do that.
It's a characteristic resort to utopian, romantic individualism, based on intense greed for sensual pleasures, relying on a specific, small aperture for self-observation and cognitive inconsistency.

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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Sam Vara » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:38 pm

binocular wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:07 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:18 pm
David Reynolds sharing some thoughts about the radical political impulse in general, as opposed to specific ideological demands:
1. Most people aren't educated enough to appreciate the complexity of psychosocial and economical processes and factors, so they think that the solution to the world's problems should be pretty easy.
2. Our old friend, the Dunning-Krüger effect makes sure that people remain unable to see the error of their ways.
3. Even without the DKE, the prospect of complexity is so daunting to, probably, most people, that they have to deny it, because the difficulty associated with attempting to solve complex problems is overwhelming for them.
Indeed.
A fool who knows his foolishness is wise at least to that extent, but a fool who thinks himself wise is a fool indeed.
https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitak ... .budd.html

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Sam Vara
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Sam Vara » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:49 pm

binocular wrote:
Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:15 pm
This is where Mr. Reynolds lets us down.
Simply by observing oneself, one doesn't learn anything. Just like life doesn't teach lessons.
If introspection would in itself lead to something, all the Freudians and their psychoanalysis patients would be enlightened.

If Mr. Reynolds says things like this --
People can be happy in totalitarian dictatorships, or alone with no money, no food, and no friends in a wilderness (although if one is starving, or one’s baby is starving, or one is in a torture chamber, then naturally it’s very much more difficult)
then he needs to explain, on the spot, how one can be happy under such circumstances, or else he deserves to be accused of the same shallow political, utopian rioting that he's accusing others of.

Every dimwitted self-help, life-hacks blog writes things like that -- "Rather than try to change eight billion others, just change yourself". And some even offer up some ideas on how to do that.
It's a characteristic resort to utopian, romantic individualism, based on intense greed for sensual pleasures, relying on a specific, small aperture for self-observation and cognitive inconsistency.
Yes, he takes it for granted that the observation of oneself should be appropriate attention - yoniso manasikara. He probably should have spelt that out, in order to differentiate himself from those you criticise, but in his defense this entry was intended to be the first of his new overtly "political" blog after concentrating on overwhelmingly Buddhist themes.

Mere introspection isn't particularly useful. In the same vein, I've heard it said (Ajahn Chah?) that contemplation of corpses in itself is not beneficial, or undertakers and those performing autopsies would be spiritually advanced.

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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by rightviewftw » Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:24 pm

fwiw:)

As i understand it his position is basically that politicians are muppets and are not in position to solve anything and are in general upholding the existing institutions. Increasing the standard of living and solving the problems of humanity is done by those who have the appropriate training in the particular areas. I think he is partially right and that it is a funny video
How to Destroy any addiction
How to Meditate: Satipatthana Mahasi
Медитация Сатипаттхана Випассана
How To Develop Factors of Enlightenment & Perceptions
Complete Manual of Insight by Mahasi Sayadaw
Tyranny of Words - An Introduction to General Semantics
Ledi Sayadaw's Anapana Dipani (Samatha) @ ffmt.fr/articles/maitres/LediS/anapana-dipani.ledi-sayadaw.pdf
Dhammapada @ myweb.ncku.edu.tw/~lsn46/tipitaka/sutta/khuddaka/dhammapada/dhp-contrast-reading/dhp-contrast-reading-en/
don't feed the trolls

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Thu May 03, 2018 3:48 am

Sam Vera, what do you make of this https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blogspot.co.uk blog?

I believe ethical Buddhist wants for much less "political correctness" but this blog gives me great pause. I wonder what this writer means by the phrase.

As I understand it one entry suggests that foreign aid is a mistake because it encourages population growth when what we need is more people dying off. Is this writer endorsing the idea or offering it up as an example of a very bad idea?
To make matters worse, some of the obvious solutions to our environmental problems are politically incorrect, like causing sub-Saharan Africans to stop multiplying like rabbits, for example by not sending them billions of dollars/euros of humanitarian aid handouts, and letting them starve down to a manageable level.
-- https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blog ... al_15.html
Seems to me that one has to have a "tin ear" to merely describe that as "politically incorrect".
As a practical matter what is the key to "observe yourself with some introspection" in order to improve the skillfulness of one's own (arguably very unskillful) speaking? Broad experience teaches that a good editor with a big red pen tends to be far more effective.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Sam Vara » Thu May 03, 2018 6:40 am

Leeuwenhoek2 wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 3:48 am
Sam Vera, what do you make of this https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blogspot.co.uk blog?

I believe ethical Buddhist wants for much less "political correctness" but this blog gives me great pause. I wonder what this writer means by the phrase.

As I understand it one entry suggests that foreign aid is a mistake because it encourages population growth when what we need is more people dying off. Is this writer endorsing the idea or offering it up as an example of a very bad idea?
To make matters worse, some of the obvious solutions to our environmental problems are politically incorrect, like causing sub-Saharan Africans to stop multiplying like rabbits, for example by not sending them billions of dollars/euros of humanitarian aid handouts, and letting them starve down to a manageable level.
-- https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blog ... al_15.html
Seems to me that one has to have a "tin ear" to merely describe that as "politically incorrect".
As a practical matter what is the key to "observe yourself with some introspection" in order to improve the skillfulness of one's own (arguably very unskillful) speaking? Broad experience teaches that a good editor with a big red pen tends to be far more effective.
I think DR has some excellent insights, but they are surrounded by some very suspect material that requires careful reading. He is certainly a maverick, and - like many mavericks - attempts to shock his audience. He is great at countering the New Agey, soft liberal tendency within Western Buddhism (he also attacks the complacency of Eastern traditional Buddhism in his older blog) but a lot of what he writes makes me shudder. The bit you quote about Afrcia is certainly one of them. Truly horrific.

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Leeuwenhoek2
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Leeuwenhoek2 » Thu May 03, 2018 7:07 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 6:40 am
a lot of what he writes makes me shudder. The bit you quote about Afrcia is certainly one of them. Truly horrific.
So what I ask is this: Copy, borrow, edit, modify this better thoughts and post them without citation.

If you have to cite the URL put a warning on it and say that you curated the worthy content and removed the horrific.

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Sam Vara
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Sam Vara » Thu May 03, 2018 9:36 am

Leeuwenhoek2 wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 7:07 am
Sam Vara wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 6:40 am
a lot of what he writes makes me shudder. The bit you quote about Afrcia is certainly one of them. Truly horrific.
So what I ask is this: Copy, borrow, edit, modify this better thoughts and post them without citation.

If you have to cite the URL put a warning on it and say that you curated the worthy content and removed the horrific.
Sorry, I'm not going to bother doing that just because there are political views which people might not like. Part of the ToS are that people take responsibility for their own emotional responses. The view that millions of people be allowed to starve to death without intervention is one that I find morally repugnant, but reading it has not harmed me. I've read far worse. They didn't harm me either. I'd rather treat people on here like autonomous adults, rather than children that need protecting from ideas.

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Grigoris
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Grigoris » Thu May 03, 2018 10:22 am

To make matters worse, some of the obvious solutions to our environmental problems are politically incorrect, like causing sub-Saharan Africans to stop multiplying like rabbits, for example by not sending them billions of dollars/euros of humanitarian aid handouts, and letting them starve down to a manageable level.
-- https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blog ... al_15.html
Racist Malthusian BS posing as environmentalism (and Buddhism???).

Here is my politically incorrect recommendation: Block first world (let's start with the U$) exploitation of developing countries. Do not allow them to steal resources from developing nations. This will lead to a natural reduction of their population to sustainable levels, since they will only be able to maintain their current rate and volume of consumption based on their locally available resources.

You see, based on consumption rates, the planet can easily support a thousand sub-Saharan Africans for every overfed American that is allowed to die. ;)

Feed the world, starve the rich...
ye dhammā hetuppabhavā tesaṁ hetuṁ tathāgato āha,
tesaṃca yo nirodho - evaṁvādī mahāsamaṇo.

Of those phenomena which arise from causes:
Those causes have been taught by the Tathāgata,
And their cessation too - thus proclaims the Great Ascetic.

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Pseudobabble
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Pseudobabble » Wed May 09, 2018 7:14 am

grigoris wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 10:22 am
To make matters worse, some of the obvious solutions to our environmental problems are politically incorrect, like causing sub-Saharan Africans to stop multiplying like rabbits, for example by not sending them billions of dollars/euros of humanitarian aid handouts, and letting them starve down to a manageable level.
-- https://politicallyincorrectdharma.blog ... al_15.html
Racist Malthusian BS posing as environmentalism (and Buddhism???).

Here is my politically incorrect recommendation: Block first world (let's start with the U$) exploitation of developing countries. Do not allow them to steal resources from developing nations. This will lead to a natural reduction of their population to sustainable levels, since they will only be able to maintain their current rate and volume of consumption based on their locally available resources.

You see, based on consumption rates, the planet can easily support a thousand sub-Saharan Africans for every overfed American that is allowed to die. ;)

Feed the world, starve the rich...

It makes sense, until you realise that 'steal their resources' actually means sign contracts to trade goods for those resources, via the exchange of money - goods which those third world countries cannot produce on their own, like medicine. So not quite 'theft' in the common sense, though I note you don't point that out.

Communistic types never realise that the default mode of interaction between humans is not the touchy-feely exchange of goods lovingly crafted for the betterment of others (though that can occur), but the exchange of blows. History bears out that assertion. The commercial exchange is so far the only existing form of large-scale, self regulating, non-violent interaction known to the human race. History, biology, and psychology say that the alternative is more likely war than smoking the peace-pipe together.

Sometimes nasty problems have nasty solutions, and rejecting viewpoints because they make us feel uncomfortable is not a smart way to approach problem solving.

grigoris wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 10:22 am
Feed the world, starve the rich...
I guess that since you use a computer, and have the spare time and energy to write on it, that you are one of the 'rich' in the first world (correct me if I am wrong...) - and that you are therefore volunteering for the starvation programme?
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

'Some fart freely, some try to hide and silence it. Which one is correct?' - Saegnapha

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Grigoris
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Grigoris » Wed May 09, 2018 7:43 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 7:14 am
It makes sense, until you realise that 'steal their resources' actually means sign contracts to trade goods for those resources, via the exchange of money - goods which those third world countries cannot produce on their own, like medicine. So not quite 'theft' in the common sense, though I note you don't point that out.
Ah, okay. So the populations of Third World countries signed contracts to have their natural resources stolen from them, leaving them hungry and destitute. They chose to be ripped off blind. There you go, you learn something new every day... :thinking:
Communistic types never realise ...
Overfed white western capitalist types never want to realise that their wealth is based on other's poverty. Mainly because it does not validate their entitlement delusion. ;)
ye dhammā hetuppabhavā tesaṁ hetuṁ tathāgato āha,
tesaṃca yo nirodho - evaṁvādī mahāsamaṇo.

Of those phenomena which arise from causes:
Those causes have been taught by the Tathāgata,
And their cessation too - thus proclaims the Great Ascetic.

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binocular
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by binocular » Wed May 09, 2018 9:12 am

grigoris wrote:
Thu May 03, 2018 10:22 am
You see, based on consumption rates, the planet can easily support a thousand sub-Saharan Africans for every overfed American that is allowed to die.
And can you sketch out the logistics of carrying this out in practice?

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Pseudobabble
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Re: Deeper truth about politics

Post by Pseudobabble » Wed May 09, 2018 9:13 am

grigoris wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 7:43 am
Pseudobabble wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 7:14 am
It makes sense, until you realise that 'steal their resources' actually means sign contracts to trade goods for those resources, via the exchange of money - goods which those third world countries cannot produce on their own, like medicine. So not quite 'theft' in the common sense, though I note you don't point that out.
Ah, okay. So the populations of Third World countries signed contracts to have their natural resources stolen from them, leaving them hungry and destitute. They chose to be ripped off blind. There you go, you learn something new every day... :thinking:
Communistic types never realise ...
Overfed white western capitalist types never want to realise that their wealth is based on other's poverty. Mainly because it does not validate their entitlement delusion. ;)

Lol.. entitlement delusion. You have swallowed equalist ideals it seems. In reality, people are ultimately entitled to whatever they can take or are given.. unless we sign up to a rules based system, and even then, the strong can break that morality with impunity. To think otherwise is literal delusion. It is demonstrated every day. Nobody has any rights or entitlements that are not given to them by power, or taken by them using power.
grigoris wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 7:43 am
So the populations of Third World countries signed contracts to have their natural resources stolen from them, leaving them hungry and destitute.
You beg the question. I have reasoned that there is no theft going on, since the transactions occur within the framework of commerce. You merely reassert theft. I don't disagree that Third World governments are corrupt, and likely there is actual theft going on with regard to resources, say, mineral rights concessions. That Third World governments are corrupt and are selling out their people in fact bolsters Reynolds point about the reduction of aid to Third World countries - that reduction would go a long way to reducing the amount of resources that 'western capitalists' are 'stealing'. In fact they are being sold those resources, and when the price is right, they buy. If it isn't, they don't. So the 'theft' only occurs when the parameters for a commercial transaction are fulfilled - interesting...
grigoris wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 7:43 am
Overfed...
Again... wondering if you are an emaciated Third Worlder, or just an overfed westerner fully using the benefits of western civilisation while trashing it to make yourself feel good.
grigoris wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 7:43 am
white western capitalist
White - does skin pigmentation have something to do with economics and international trade..? I'm not sure. Perhaps someone out there can inform us on the specific relation between the level of skin melanin and capital, liquidity, or the quality of iron ore in Zimbabwe?
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

'Some fart freely, some try to hide and silence it. Which one is correct?' - Saegnapha

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