Wednesday, October 24, 2012

What is Truth?

What is truth?

In economics, the numbers add up or they don't.

In politics, the strategies either or work or they don't.

In History, the facts can be checked or they can't.

    There is what we believe and what we don't; There is what we can prove and what we can't. However, is there such a thing as truth in this world of confusion?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Answer to Bullying

    Bullying has a simple operating concept. Logically, there has to an inferior for a superior to exist, because the superior has to have something to be superior to. Therefore, the key to becoming superior is to create an inferior. This is how bullying works.

    The natural reaction to this is to try to become the superior when people try to make you into an inferior by escalating the violence, gossip, or talking others to join in isolation punishment (ignoring) until your dominance is clearly displayed to all. The problem with this natural reaction is that its fighting bullying with bullying.

    The reason why fighting bullying with bullying is wrong is that it continues the circle of violence and is not taking the feelings of the person acting out (the bully) into account. Violence is the sound pain makes when it tries to regain control of its life. Any psychologist worth their pay check will sense the crying for attention that acting out is based in.

    There is a massive potential that the bully is in as much pain as the people he or she is bullying either physically or verbally. In fact, the bully is most likely not starting the violence, but continuing violence by transferring it onto others in a form of crying for help.

    All humans are interconnected, which is why a problem in part of society is all of society's problem. Humans only escalate violence by constantly acting and reacting in violence. To understand this fully we must understand what violence is.

    Violence is the most basic form of control. The control is simple and logical "do what I say or I'll verbally, emotionally, or physically hurt you". The concept of violence is the most basic form of control we have. The ability to put others in pain and the control that comes with that is violence.

    Violence is no more than control. Control is based in power, therefore, we need to understand power. Power is based the ability to influence people with or without their consent. This can be done with violence, money, or other means of mental or emotional control.

    The difference between discipline and abuse can be found in how power is used. Authority is a person that uses power to correct a behavior which society has agreed can't exist (murder, stealing, cheating on tests, etc). Abuses start when power in of itself is the goal instead of a means to an end. This was talked about in my blog post "Addicted to Power".

    This is both why concepts of authority and power are both needed and corrupt. Positions of power are suppose to protect us, but are still run by humans that are have the ability to become power hungry. For all have fallen short of the glory of God. Humans are both the creators and victims of the societies they create.

    There is another way to deal with bullying at all levels of society. Dealing with bullying is not about retaliating or continuing the superiority/inferiority complex that drives violence, but about having enough respect for yourself, your ideas, and your emotions to not let others hurt you. It's not about pushing back, because we are all interconnected; it's about having enough respect for yourself to not let others push you down.


Monday, October 22, 2012

What is Intelligence?

Am I intelligent if other people say I am?

Am I intelligent if tests say I am?

Am I intelligent if I'm well read or am I just well read?

    There are many ways to measure intelligence. However, what good is intelligence without the courage to act on your thoughts and ideas; what good is courage without wisdom?

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Addicted to Power

    I've been thinking about the concept of money. Money changes from time period to time period. Money in the early Colonies was tobacco; money has been gold, silver, cash, check, and now digital. Money has been fought over. Countries have sent men to die for money. People have spent a lifetime working for money. This has led me to think that there is more to money than money itself. 

    I've been mediating on what could be the deeper meaning. My mind dwelled on this until I remembered when I dwelled on the concept of "discipline vs abuse" and I believe the conclusion is the same. I came to the conclusion that discipline is power used to correct behaviors that are mutually beneficial to the group (don't murder, steal, cheat on tests, etc). Abuse of power begins when power itself becomes the object; when power is no longer a tool in the authority's tool box, but the object itself is when abuses of power begin.

    Money is the same way. Money is an access point to the goods and services we need to survive and thrive. Therefore, money is a blessing to our lives by raising our standard of living by gaining more of it. Saved money provides stability in hard times. Yet, money causes abuses to happen when the money itself becomes the objective. The purpose of money is to make trade easier for humans and life better by raising standards of living. However, where is the point between money being a means to an end (better living) and being the end itself (the goal). Another way to put this is when do we stop using money to live, thrive, and gain stability; but start living to make money.

    The reason I thought about both power and money at the same time was because politics and economics are the same thing. Politics is the art of power; power is the ability to influence others; the main reason people use influence is to get money. Therefore, politics and economics go together at every level of our society.

    All this thinking has led to me a simple series of questions. If money and power operate on the same concepts and people can get addicted to power, then can they get addicted to money? If yes, then what is the addiction? Is the addiction status, power, attention, or something else? What is the addiction to money that drives our world?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

What is Education?

What is Education?

Am I educated because I have a degree from Veritas Classical and soon will have a degree from Georgia Gwinnett College?

Am I educated because I have close to 400 books in my private collection and working to expand it to 500 by graduation? (I spend a lot of money buying books from amazon)

Am I educated because I spend my spare time watching History, Psychology, and Theology lectures online?

     There are many ways to judge education. Education is all about exchanging and thinking about ideas. It is this exchange of ideas that advances societies. This can be done in many formats. It can be done in author to reader (books, articles, etc); it can be done in researcher to listener (lectures), and in friendly conversation.