Monday, September 15, 2008

How to Stop War

Maybe the key to stopping all future wars is in realizing that we are all different. It is in understanding those differences AND accepting those differences that we are able to live together. It is because this is so hard to do that war happens.

How can you accept values that are so different from yours? At the most basic level, people tend to put themselves in other people's shoes. But this could be the most fatal mistake that anyone can make.

No matter how hard you try to understand that person, no matter how you try to imagine yourself in that person's position, you can never be that person. You can never share what he feels, what he thinks, what he believes in, and the things he values most.

Saying someone is wrong... That can only be true by your own standards. Any person, to a great degree, will tend to do what is right and best by his own standards, regardless of the standards of society and ethics. Every person will do what he believes in is good, and though it may be hard to understand, good may involve killing, destroying, stealing, aside from the normal things we view 'good' as. This is because people have their own standard of 'good' in them.

Changing someone, because they are not 'good' by your own standards, is inciting a war.

-Contemplations on the Verge of Insanity

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

What's in a Name?

Through a name, I am me. You are you. What would a world without names be like?

It's a world where you will not be remembered. There is nothing that will distinguish us from each other. From one point of view, this can be scary. Memories are important for most of us after all.

From the other point of view, without names there is nothing that will divide us. In some way, we are more connected to each other. We are one, existing and coexisting in the balance of chaos.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

On The Power of Language

Language... is such a powerful thing. I am not talking about language as a way to just talk, or say a word. I mean language, which encompasses the language that is used by the visually-impaired, hearing-impaired, and speech-impaired. It is language that is written in books, shown in symbols, passed on orally from one generation to another, felt on the Braille system, typed through your keyboard, or passed from one mind to another.

It is the raw power of NAMES. Imagine a world without names. Nothing to separate one thought, one experience, one memory from another. Nothing to separate YOU from ME. We will merely be reacting to external stimuli without thought or judgment.

Language is the very thing that puts us above other animals. Take language away, let a child grow without exposure to language since birth, and that human will have a mind equal to or less than that of an animal.

Language, I must say, may even be the soul. The thoughts of one person, the ideals of one person, they can all be passed down to future generations through language. Even when that person dies, through language, his thoughts still live and continue to evolve in the body of another person. Through language, one thought can meld into other thoughts, other thoughts can meld into one thought. Evolving, changing, whether positively or negatively.

Yes, language is thought.

In animals, it may be possible to pass on behavior through imitation. But this passing on of behavior is very much limited. But in humans, with the help of language, the limitations are almost nil, when compared to a situation where there is no language involved.

Language allows for organization of thoughts. Without language, memories will merely be memories. But with language, memories can be organized. Related memories can be put together. This allows for a more effective use of mental resources. This is how the brain works, like thoughts attract like thoughts. But without language, there are no like or unlike thoughts.

An individual's body dies, but ideas and thoughts passed on through language will live as long as another individual holds them. Christianity, Judaism, Islam, they are all passed down through the generations through language. Imagine the impact of Jesus Christ on the world, that is made possible through language. Buddha, Zoroasther, Muhammed, they all utilized the power of language.

Without language, you cannot think! Yes, you cannot have the thoughts that you have now. You can only think because you have already experienced language.

Such is the power of language.

Monday, February 25, 2008

On Religion and The Existence of God

Right now, my heart does not belong to any religion. But I believe in the existence of the Creator, whether you call him God, Yahweh, or Allah.

The Creator exists. The reason why this is true is quite simple, yet so intricate.

I do not need to prove him. I can feel him.

I can feel him in the full breadth of the universe. I can feel him in the breeze. I can feel him beating with the heartbeat of every living being.

I can feel him in the sunlight. In the sprays of rain.

I can feel him in the tiniest divisions of matter: the cells, the elements, the atoms, the subparticles that compose all of us.

I can feel him in YOU. I can feel him in me.

The Metaphor of the River and a Raft

No one is entirely to blame.