Introvert-at-Large

••• you are officially off the beaten path •••

Steve Rigell

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 06-10-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/unless-you-care/

Unless you care

Unless you care

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 06-10-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/unless-you-care/

You’ll probably ignore that, too, because it’s at least just as much of a pain in the ass requiring you to care about something you would prefer not to care about.

These are the things that will always bite you in the butt.

The things we ignore, and, the things we thing are true, but aren’t.

Everything that doesn’t exist for us falls into the category of what we don’t know. Everything that does exist for us falls into the category of stuff we think is true but isn’t.

You can’t win.

Somehow we’ve convinced ourselves we know enough about what we don’t know that we can just ignore it. Just filter it out and go on with our days. Not exactly blissful ignorance these days, but ignorance nonetheless.

Fish don’t know about water.

You don’t miss your water till your well runs dry.

And we have no idea what we don’t know.

That’s what science is about. Discovering things we don’t know. Done right, it’s a systematic way of asking better questions. Done wrong it’s a way of ignoring the obvious and believing whatever you want to believe, regardless of what you know.

That’s the way most of us operate. We don’t even consider what we don’t know.

Life has become so complicated, people have stopped caring, because there’s one thing about life you can’t escape. It’s fucking relentless.

That’s actually a good thing, but humans don’t like that aspect of life. I mean, how can you care about something that just won’t fucking stop. That’s what we call irritating. We’d rather just snuff it all out and simplify things so we can get a little relief from the relentlessness of life, cuz you can’t ignore it, because it’s always there.

Maybe once we get this relentlessness of life out of the way, we’ll have a little time for considering what we don’t know. I mean, jeez, a person can only do so much in a day.

The fact is that democracy, like every sustainable aspect of life, requires effort. In fact, the effort required is actually creating more value within your individual context than you extract from that context.

For some reason, this doesn’t sound like a good deal to the human mind.

Anyway, it’s the relentlessness that gives life some hope for continuing to be sustainable. The sustainable bits are those that create more value than they extract.

Relentlessly.

Humanity’s unwillingness to embrace this relentlessness doesn’t bode well for us as a species unless we change our thinking a bit. I mean, change our thinking a lot. Like, change our minds completely and start using our hearts more. PDQ.

Change Your Mind
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published regularly @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-25-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/the-reason-we-humans-are-so-willing-to-believe-lies/

The reason we humans are so willing to believe lies

The reason we humans are so willing to believe lies

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-25-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/the-reason-we-humans-are-so-willing-to-believe-lies/

We will even do something directly contradicting our best interests if it simplifies our perception of reality enough.

Witness the activities of mobs and cults and other group phenomena.

We are literally willing to believe anything if it seems to simplify reality enough. It’s why we always look for someone to blame. It’s why we prefer our autonomy—it’s hard to imagine we are all one meta-organism, or that all life is one meta-meta-organism.

This is essentially the impetus for all forms of communication, especially marketing and propaganda, which are essentially the same thing. The most effective communications simplify someone’s perception of reality. That we can also use this influence to gain advantage and exploit other humans for personal gain and profit is seen as a legitimate business opportunity if it can be monitored.

Our societies usually have some laws that are conceived to ostensibly limit some extreme activities of exploitation, but they rely on humans for enforcement, and few humans are able to override the human instinct to gain advantage (power) when the opportunity presents itself.

In our efforts to engineer greater certainty we have created a situation in which our species will have to endure greater uncertainty and less predictability than Nature would have ever required.

This makes our perception of reality a distortion field made of layer upon layer of lies intermingling with one another like maggots on a rotting carcass.

And this doesn’t even account for all the lies we tell ourselves. YIKES!

In the case of climate change, we tolerate incremental change because one day or week doesn’t feel that different from the previous day or week. And this is the wealthy who are in denial. Denial, like blaming someone else, is a convenient first response to increasing complexity used by millions. If you’re feeling like a passive response is better, go with denial. If you’re feeling a little more aggressive or angry, blame someone else.

The poor don’t have any time to do anything other than do their best to survive week-to-week.

This aspect of human nature won’t change overnight. Maybe never.

Our species, indeed, every species on our planet are in for some discomfort and inconvenience in the coming decades. Centuries.

If we’re true to our pattern, we’ll try to change nature before admitting we need to change our own behavior. Change our thinking. Change our ways. Change our minds.

Such thinking makes things so much more complex, and we can’t really handle that, because it would require us to see the way we see reality is an illusion.

But if anyone can get humanity’s attention, it is nature. Nature operates under a set of operational parameters that humanity, as part of nature, will eventually have to comply with or perish.

I’m pretty sure nature doesn’t consider humanity to be an asset, no matter how highly we think of ourselves. More likely, Nature considers humanity to be a huge pain the ass over in that remote galaxy they charmingly call the Milky Way.

Change Your Mind
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published regularly @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-22-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/we-need-a-new-definition-of-insanity/

We need a new definition of insanity

We need a new definition of insanity

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-22-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/we-need-a-new-definition-of-insanity/

We the people have to consider that we are the insane ones. We keep doing the same thing over and over expecting different results. So what is it we keep doing over and over?

We keep letting insane people run corporations and governments and keep thinking they will do the right thing. That sounds insane to me. Maybe insane is normal. Who knows.

Bullies. Psychopaths. Narcissists. Fascists. Sociopaths. Doing the right thing? That’s even more ridiculous than thinking ’normal people’ will do the right thing.

Let’s not forget idiots.

We’re all idiots who have no idea what we are doing.

If we hold true to form, we won’t even think about starting to think about getting started at doing something about the situation until it is too late. That’s just the way we roll. We don’t like changing unless we have to, and then, we only go kicking and screaming. Does that sound like insanity to you?

Maybe it’s childish if you do it when you’re going though a difficult phase, but to keep doing it over and over… that sounds like insanity.

Even so, wanting to be in charge of things should be a red flag for us. Wanting to be in charge should automatically disqualify anyone from even applying. In other words, wanting to be in charge ought to be classified as a mental illness.

It has always been the human birthright to screw up your own life. Being civilized means letting someone else screw up your life. Wanting to be in charge mostly means you want to be the one who screws up people’s lives.

There seems to be no shortage of people who want to screw up everyone else’s life. This means we can feel confident that things will be screwed up for the foreseeable future.

Those are exactly the people who shouldn’t be in charge.

If we hold true to form, we won’t even think about starting to think about getting started at doing something about the situation until it is too late.

I mean, how can that not be obvious to everyone? That’s insane!

We have to change the way we do things.

Of course, we’ll have to change our minds before we can change our behavior, and that’s the tricky part.

Still, we have to try.

Change Your Mind
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-21-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/humanity-yearns-for-a-hero/

Humanity yearns for a hero

Humanity yearns for a hero

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-21-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/humanity-yearns-for-a-hero/

This human mindset makes war inevitable. Call it what you will. War. Oppression. Exploitation. Colonialism. Evangelical outreach. It is what separates us into Us and Them.

It is our differences. It is the possibility of change.

The status quo must be violently protected from pending changes. At all costs.

This dogmatism always breeds disillusionment in the next generation. Sometimes the current generation gets it, but that doesn’t happen often. Sometimes the current generation opposes and defeats the status quo. But that doesn’t happen often.

Regardless of who mounts the opposition, the forces of conflict always end up, just like the hero, back where it all started. Thesis. Antithesis. Resolution. There is no progress. There is only the repetition of conflict.

Evil and Good depend on where you are standing when you look at them. They just change their masks and their uniforms. They adopt new slogans. They put each other on trial for show.

But they always return to where they started. That’s what Heroes do when they undertake the ‘Hero’s Journey.’

Humanity shows no sign of tiring of this story.

Facism against Democracy. Private against Public. Wealth against Poverty. Salvation agains Sin. Conservative against Liberal.

It is always Good against Evil, and everyone thinks their side is the good guys in a fight to the death, the fight of a lifetime, the war to end all wars.

We can’t seem to get past this one plot. All other plots are subsumed into the Hero’s Journey.

The real story is how we get past this plot line. How do we exit this story?

Well, first we have to change our minds—change our thinking—because that will be necessary to change the way we do things.

Then we have to learn to work together instead of following our instincts and opposing one another. We have to embrace unity over separation.

Then we have to practice working together and get really good at it. In short, we must transcend our own nature.

Then we have to keep working together to keep ourselves from falling for the Hero’s Journey plot line. There are no heroes. There are no villains. We are all in this together.

This will be the hardest work humanity has ever undertaken. We will not be saved by clever heroes. Each of us must do our part.

This is something we have never before been able to achieve. It may be something we can not achieve. If we don’t humanity will perish.

But we have to try.

It’s the least we can do.

Change Your Mind
Let’s Do Something Together
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-20-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/the-best-i-can-do/

The best I can do

The best I can do

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-20-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/the-best-i-can-do/

We are pebbles in a riverbed. Grains of sand on a beach. Molecules of water in the river of life. Quarks merging for a moment with space and time.

And yet this is what shapes life and its awareness of itself. This is what creates the consciousness that creates life. This is the act of creation.

What is is what is.

What is has never existed before. And yet everything is the way it has always been.

It is perfect and flawed. Some things work well, others seem like mistakes.

This is what is.

We humans do not really understand how insignificant we are in the grand scheme of things. We do not understand how significant the details of our lives are. The magic we take for granted. The mystery of the unfolding story of life. Our own inability to see the drama in the growth of awareness, and experience the tension in the awareness of growth.

Each of us on a quest of completion we don’t understand. We each must go our own way alone and this terrifies us.

Our insignificance terrifies us so we invent ways to convince ourselves we are gods by exploiting life and oppressing those whose minor differences offend our arbitrary sensibilities.

Our uniqueness terrifies us even as it impresses us. Our egos are the culmination of our uniqueness. Uniqueness means differences. All the differences that are insignificant. But we convince ourselves of their greatness and put ourselves on pedestals.

We push the limits of what is to make it conform to our desires. We demand that what is be entertaining and make us feel good, feel happy, feel fulfilled.

We believe the myths of our origins and we make cathedrals as tributes to our own greatness wherein we worship the gods we have created in our own image.

We have no idea what we are doing, so we do everything we can to be significant, to draw the right attention, to be recognized as successful, to assemble the trappings of prestige, and to engage in conquests that make our souls uncomfortable.

Who is to say this is not what we should be doing. After all—or maybe, before all—what we are doing has never been done before.

But what we are doing makes my soul uncomfortable. The way we do things is not sustainable. We try to ignore the consequences but they refuse to be ignored.

As a species, our destiny is to make some fundamental changes in the way we do things on a massive scale. It will happen one way or another.

If human history is any indicator, we won’t do it the easy way.

The best we can do is make the best of what is.

Change Your Mind
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-19-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/we-hold-back-the-tools-our-children-need/

We hold back the tools our children need

We hold back the tools our children need

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-19-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/we-hold-back-the-tools-our-children-need/

We have betrayed our progeny. Shamelessly.

More interested in shameless self-promotion today, we bumble in haste from one mess to another rather than give our children the purchase they need to position themselves to extricate their generation and future generations from the predicaments we’ve created in rush for what we call progress and success.

More to the point, we inhibit them. We put up obstacles. We try to keep them ignorant and uneducated. Education is little more than shallow babysitting and political indoctrination these days.

Exploiters and oppressors prefer for people to be ignorant and uneducated. This makes them more susceptible to manipulation and less likely to ask questions. Exploiters don’t like having to explain themselves or be held accountable for their shady accounting shenanigans.

Oppression is just a more extreme form of exploitation.

They only do get away with this because the rest of us are so easily distracted and are usually busy with wild goose chases assigned to us by the exploiters. We are also lazy. You have to stay on top of exploiters. They are alway up to something. You can’t turn your back for a minute.

Clearly this system isn’t working for anyone but the exploiters.

They aren’t going to change voluntarily.

The rest of us will have to change voluntarily. And we will, one way or another.

Whether we want to or not.

Change Your Mind
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-18-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/humanity-did-not-make-it/

Humanity did not make it

Humanity did not make it

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-18-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/humanity-did-not-make-it/

You know what that means…

We’re gonna have to figure this shit out on our own.

And… we still may not make it.

We have to change the way we do things.

What we are doing is not sustainable.

We have to make some fundamental changes on a massive scale.

Change Your Mind
Let’s Do Something Together
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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-17-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/the-people-who-live-next-door/

The people who live next door

The people who live next door

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-17-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/the-people-who-live-next-door/

And all this is accepted as normal.

Some people would rather everyone have guns than save a few innocent lives. And, a lot of these people call themselves ‘pro-life.’

Whatever happened to, ‘Love one another?’

There is nothing like the feeling of ‘getting away will something’ you were not supposed to do. That’s how we get our thrills.

Empathy, compassion, and dignity are in steep decline. Exactly what one would expect of humans. There is a darkness casting its shadow on the planet. The people are in peril. But the problem is, the people are the problem.

Our interactive mores are making isolation not only accepted, but preferable. We focus on our differences.

Pronouns. Religion. Pro-whatever. And of course, we don’t like to talk about sexuality so let’s pass laws that make talking about it illegal. Then let’s ban some books. That will fix what is wrong with society these days. Everyone else is wrong. Why isn’t that obvious to everyone?

Besides, things are changing so fast now, it is impossible to remember what was really happening in the past, so we just make stuff up. This is completely normal. Eventually, everything becomes imagined.

Exaggerating stuff that doesn’t matter in order to create a little drama because life has become boring. Staid. Civilized.

But our basic nature as a species is not civilized. We are primitive barbarians at heart. Not nearly as sophisticated as we imagine ourselves to be. Bullies and wimps mostly. Passive/aggressive. Narcissistic. Sadistic…

Not really worth getting involved with if you know what’s good for you.

No wonder the aliens next door haven’t stopped by to introduce themselves. We are the new species in the galaxy and are still figuring out how to work with nature. Our primitive understanding of Life allows us the illusion that we are separate… unique… superior…

But somehow, things are always, not the way we remember them being. That makes us uncomfortable, and it is always someone else’s fault. Why can’t those idiots realize how wrong they are?

It doesn’t matter that what we think is true is not.

Oh well. sighs, I have to do something to call attention to myself? It’s on my todo list. I need some stats, man! Some social proof. That’s what I need now. Data driven productivity.

Now that’s what I call social interaction!

And there are people who believe what I believe out there on the internet. That’s who I would rather hang with, you know.

It feels slightly better to hang with people who have the same darkness festering inside them.

We are all playing petty parts in our own dramas while our world collapses around us.

The devil really is in the details, if the details are differences.

This shit really isn’t working. It is not sustainable. There is literally no future for our species if we continue doing things the way we do things.

We have to make some fundamental changes on a massive scale.


Change Your Mind
Let’s Do Something Together
Express Your Self


Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-16-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/there-is-too-much-greed/

There is too much greed

There is too much greed

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-16-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/there-is-too-much-greed/

For the last few generations, there has been a change in the way parents treat their children. Before, each generation worked to give their children a life that was better than the one they lived.

Now, each generation betrays its children more egregiously than their parents did them.

Civilization is set up to serve the powerful, and ignore, oppress, or exploit those without power. Sounds a bit barbaric, doesn’t it? Civilization is just a superficial patina covering our otherwise barbaric tendencies.

The worlds powerful corporations, and their CEOs don’t care about people except to the degree they are exploitable or oppressable. If they are not exploitable, oppressable, or useful, they are considered useless, worthless, defective.

From a corporation’s perspective, people are almost always considered fickle and unreliable because they have personal lives in which unexpected things happen which cause people to make choices that are personally advantageous rather than advantageous to the corporation.

Democracy requires being involved, but that is just what corporations do not want.

People will believe anything. Just ask the Roman Catholic Church. Corporations and institutions like the Catholic Church prefer for people to be uneducated. That way they are more susceptible to deception.

Laws are written by corporations and then enacted by politicians whose votes have been bought. That’s what democracy has become.

Corporations have all the inalienable rights these days.

This system only works for the corporations, and the true believers who are willing to exploit anything for a profit.

And now, corporations have made it impossible for parents to give their children a life that was better than the one they had.

Just watch what corporations do when people start migrating away from scorched, waterless deserts and cities being inundated by rising tides and the devastation of unprecedented flooding.

It is impossible to be ethical in this system. There is always some some exploitation within the provenance of either side of a transaction. If you look deeply enough you can always find it, because it is always there.

Imagine… We have a system in which it is impossible to be ethical.

We have wandered waaaay off-course. We have a long way to go to get back on course, folks.

We can’t just do nothing. I mean, we can just do nothing. That’s what we are doing now. But doing nothing means we are condoning a system which exploits and oppresses.

This shit isn’t working for anyone. It is not sustainable.


Change Your Mind

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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-15-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/what-will-it-be/

What will it be

What will it be

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-15-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/what-will-it-be/

What will it be, humanity?

What will it be, humanity?
What is going to do us in?
We have set ourselves up
To participate in the end our age
And you and I
Will most likely die
As history turns the page
We’re the unlucky ones
Who will have to suffer
Through the hard times before The Fresh Start
It could have been
Another way
But we chose not to play it smart
We put ourselves into
The Prisoner’s Dilemma
To justify our crappy choices
And filter out
The pleas of prophets
Speaking with reasonable voices
Will humanity learn
Any lessons from this
And cease our destructive ways
To work within Nature
To cooperate
If we make it through the coming Dark Age?
What will it be, humanity?


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Jus’ Thinkin’ ‘bout Stuff is published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-14-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/blah-blah-blah/

Blah blah blah

Blah blah blah

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-14-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/blah-blah-blah/

The status quo has a smell. It smells like a hot blast of diesel exhaust blown straight into your face. It is the deceptive smell of progress and getting things done. It is the smell of wars, the smell of oppression. The intoxicating aroma of opportunity pregnant with profit potential.

The smell that hovers over poverty like the scent of a rotting corpse.

The status quo has an attitude. Good lord, does it have an attitude. It is get away with whatever you can with the understanding that the only people held accountable are people whom someone wants to oppress.

Cut those corners. Hack the system. Get away with a much as you can. Cheating and deception, they’re all okay. Just shake it off if you get caught. No one is gonna hold you accountable.

Exploit whenever, wherever, whomever you can. Gain that advantage. Leverage yourself up. Always up. Always stepping on someone else to get there. Get out of the way of the status quo; make sure you are not among those who are tagged and badged for oppression.

The status quo has an appetite. It loves extreme flavors. It consumes. And consumes. It wants more. Then it wants even more. There is never enough.

Every new flavor is a distraction and requires a reaction only to be forgotten like the litter left in our wake as we earnestly pursue purpose and pretend what we are doing is blessed by the gods we create in our own images.

The better to worship you with, my cherished Status Quo, for you are without equal among the pantheon of the powerful.

The status quo is a debilitating disease that is fatal for societies and civilizations. Even for situations. It numbs the senses as makes things seem they have always been this way. It is a disease borne by a parasite that sucks the life out of its host and then appears to wither away until a new host wanders into its territory.

It is a mutation of a mutation that mutates by finding flaws and exaggerating their negative attributes as it masks the opportunities inherent in them.

The status quo is aggressively complacent. Extremely mundane. Willfully indifferent. Ardently casual. Passionately denying its bigotry like a teenager caught in a lie.

The status quo pretends to unify while it polarizes. It contradicts itself and no one notices. A consummate con artist picking the pockets of its preferred marks while smiling into their eyes and making them feel special.

It appeals to everyone’s vanity and then easily moves on with the fluidity of a lubricious libertine seducing the unsuspecting rubes who have come to see what all the fuss is about.

It is supported by rituals that purport to be meaningful if only one surrenders ones soul to their cadences and facile incantations.

It is the embodiment of our collective desires.

How can the status quo be otherwise?

It can not be otherwise.


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Published daily @ steverigell.com/jus-thinkin-bout-stuff

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-13-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/they-fear-how-they-will-spend-eternity/

They fear how they will spend eternity

They fear how they will spend eternity

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-13-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/they-fear-how-they-will-spend-eternity/

We create elaborate systems and construct intricate realities to distract ourselves from having to recognize our true nature as part of life.

Time does not exist without motion. Therefore stillness allows one to transcend time.
Space does not exist without manifestation. So, non-being allows one to transcend space.

So what is left?

Everything else. Nothing. At the same time. Relatively speaking. It’s what is emergent from the fabric of what is that enables what we experience, but we created the experiences because we have to do something while we are manifesting on this plane. It might as well be constructive. Useful. Facilitating what is instead of fighting it with beliefs and superstitions.

Instead we focus on outcomes over which we have no control, and ignore the inputs.

Death is a way out of the uncertainties that surround us while we are alive, but there is no assurance in death about the uncertainties awaiting us after death. The possibility of uncertainty exists, so uncertainty persists.

Therefore, it is something to be avoided.

This is one of those elaborate mind-fucks humans use to generate justifications, to justify denials and to deny our lack of understanding so we can keep making the same mistakes over and over, generation after generation.

Clearly this shit isn’t working. We have to change the way we do things. We must change our minds. Trying to base a life on fear of anything is not an approach that enables life.

Who benefits when people live in fear? Hint: It is not the fearful.

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jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-12-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/clearly-this-shit-is-not-working/

Clearly this shit is not working

Clearly this shit is not working

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-12-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/clearly-this-shit-is-not-working/

Humans, with our customary aplomb and distinction have created a society in which one can not participate without being unethical.

It is impossible to stay alive in our current society without participating in a string of transactions in which, somewhere along the line, exploitation has occurred.

To support and condone such a system is a betrayal of morality.

Humanity has reached a state, you might say, ‘we have evolved,’ to a point, where it appears we have transcended morality. We have left it behind and moved on.

We have constructed a context in which everyone is implicitly immoral if only by condoning a system whose foundation is exploitation and oppression.

Everything isn’t just for sale these days, everything is exploitable from our planet to unborn generations, not just of our species, but all of Life. The more you exploit, the wealthier and more successful you become.

Exploitation can only be legal when laws are immoral. Profiting from the misfortunes of others is immoral. It is exploitive. Allowing it to happen is immoral. It is apathetic and hypocritical.

All financial wealth is built on a foundation of exploitation. Somewhere along the line, exploitation occurs that enables the accumulation and hoarding of financial wealth.

The wealthy are the people who have put themselves in charge by exploiting and oppressing.

They think it is better to extract value for themselves rather than create value for others. The stock market is a system designed to do just that. Extract value for yourself without creating value for others.

The only problem with this approach is that nature does not operate this way most of the time. Most things that operate this way are considered diseases because their objective is the opposite of Life’s objective.

Apparently, though, the people in charge think they can just keep on exploiting as long as there is something to exploit. Maybe they think they will stop after everything has been exploited and there is nothing left to exploit.

You could say, they are Daring the Devil.

And they are in charge because we allow exploitation.

Clearly this shit isn not working! Why do we do it?

It doesn’t really matter why we do it. The real point is we have to change the way we operate. We must change our minds, change our thinking and our awareness, our attitudes and beliefs about exploitation. Sooner or later we will get there.

Let’s get on with it!

Change Your Mind

Let’s Do Something Together

Express Your Self

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-11-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/predisposed-to-anger-and-dissatisfaction/

Predisposed to anger and dissatisfaction

Predisposed to anger and dissatisfaction

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-11-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/predisposed-to-anger-and-dissatisfaction/

We want what we want… and most of us want it now, or at least pretty soon.

When we think about what we want, we envision the preferred end-state, the desired outcome. That’s the way desires work. We want what we want without all the stuff in between here and there.

What we want is always somewhere else, some other time. That’s why we want it.

What we want most is control.

That’s different from relief from uncertainty.

The uncertainty is irrelevant if we think we can control it. It is the lack of control that really bumfuzzles us as humans.

After all, we picture ourselves at the center of the universe. We create our gods in our own image. How then does it happen that we do not control things? That should be impossible, right?

So we create the illusion of control by forcing things to be the way we want them to be without any regard for the consequences.

We are finally coming face-to-face with the consequences, and the picture isn’t that pleasant.

Turns out we don’t have as much control as we pretended to have.

And now, it’s time to change our ways. We have to change the way we do things. We have to change our behavior and our values. We have to acknowledge some of our most cherished beliefs are erroneous.

We are having trouble with that. We are reluctant to relinquish the idea of control.

It could be our downfall as a species.

Time will tell.

How are you going to handle this situation?

Change Your Mind

Let’s Do Something Together

Express Your Self

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-10-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/we-do-not-understand-value-at-all/

We do not understand value at all

We do not understand value at all

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-10-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/we-do-not-understand-value-at-all/

We do not understand value at all. We conflate value with price. Perhaps it is because value is harder to measure, and we’re lazy creatures.

Maybe it is our penchant for wanting to gain advantage, for seeing how far we can push things and what we can get away with that gives us permission to ignore value and focus on price.

Or, it could be our extraction/exploitation mentality. We see ourselves as separate from nature and see it as a field of conquest where everything is for sale and feel we must define value as a transaction.

Or… maybe we are just bullies and want to have things our way. Value is what we say it is.

As usual, we take things to ridiculous extremes.

But the ultimate test of value is whether more value is created than extracted.

Think about the value created by nurses, mothers, service workers, firefighters and educators. Compare that the the value created by entertainers, CEOs, and billionaires. The difference is qualitative and not reflected the transactions that accompany whatever value they create for their context. The former create value within their context. The later extract more value from their context and hoard it to themselves.

Nature’s processes are based on value as it relates to Life. In Nature, everything must create more value within its context than it extracts or it becomes very rare. Maybe even non-existent. The things that create the most value, that is, they are valued more within their context, become more stable.

But everything is temporary, and value is continually being redefined within every context. It is an eternal process. It is a way of defining relationships, not a way of setting oneself apart from everything else. That’s what price does.

Sooner or later we’ll have to admit price is not a sustainable way to measure value. Sooner or later, we will realize we must take a closer look at how we define value and measure it. To do that, we will have to change our thinking about what value is. We will have to change our minds about value.

As long as our economic system permits the extraction of value without creating any value whatsoever, humanity will continue to destroy itself. As long as we continue to refuse to recognize value cannot be measured financially, we will continue to undermine Life itself. We simply must change the way we do things.

The problems we see out there are just reflections of our own imperfections. We much change the way we do things. We need more heart and less mind.

Change Your Mind

Let’s Do Something Together

Express Your Self

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-09-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/it-is-a-good-thing-that-poetry-is-so-unpopular/

It is a good thing that poetry is so unpopular

It is a good thing that poetry is so unpopular

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-09-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/it-is-a-good-thing-that-poetry-is-so-unpopular/

We need more of that, but it is unpopular.

That’s the way we roll, irony all the way
Slipping by on either side of the long highway
The road that takes us from here to there
Treating the mystery like a casual affair
While we believe most of all the crap we hear
And we shed our warm self-pitying tears
As we consume our way to our graves
Our spirits broken like eternal slaves
With no place in our chests for a proper heart
We think it’s a game and we are playing our part
And keep moving, no time to contemplate
Gotta keep moving we don’t want to be late
Gotta keep moving we don’t want to be late
If you ain’t busy with a new beginning
You’re just stretching out the same old ending

We have to change the way we do things before it is too late.

What we are doing is not sustainable.

Change Your Mind

Let’s Do Something Together

Express Your Self

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-08-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/our-default-perspective-is-either-or/

Our default perspective is either-or

Our default perspective is either-or

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-08-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/our-default-perspective-is-either-or/

Everybody wants to be somebody.

Superficial and vain. Greedy and selfish. Destructive and partisan. These traits have been with us for millennia. We don’t seem to be maturing much as a species.

We live in the midst of the miracle of life itself and take it all for granted. The parts of it we acknowledge, we see as separate from us—something to be exploited.

We seem to be regressing, becoming less civil as we become more civilized. It is almost like civilization is the problem.

But what is wrong with civilization is what is wrong with us. We are clearly not as perfect as we imagine ourselves to be. The Dunning-Krueger effect, like Murphy’s Law, is alive and well, wherever humans go.

What we see wrong with our civilization is what is wrong with us, we just refuse to see it. We openly deny our flaws and justify our shortcomings.

The flaws in our character and the limitations of our awareness as individuals who are part of all that is are being exposed by the growing critical mass of civilization done in the human style.

Clearly human civilization is not working for any species, especially the human species. We will not make an exit from this predicament if we don’t admit what we are doing is not working, and change the way we do thing. The way we think.

What we are doing is not sustainable.

Change Your Mind

Let’s Do Something Together

Express Your Self

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-07-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/as-george-bernard-shaw-may-have-quipped/

As George Bernard Shaw may have quipped

As George Bernard Shaw may have quipped

jus' thinkin' 'bout stuff - 05-07-2022 - by steve rigell - https://steverigell.com/as-george-bernard-shaw-may-have-quipped/

Will we blame it on our parents?

Will we say they failed to prepare us, to educate us, to give us what we needed?

Will we say they failed to give us the right values or they failed to teach us to think clearly and make better decisions?

Will we blame it on our DNA or our irrational, emotional, fearful, selfish, greedy human nature?

Will we blame it on our cognitive biases and our parents prejudices?

Will we maintain we had no choice, that we didn’t know any better, that we were mislead.

Will we maintain we did not have the science until it was too late?

Will we fail to act even now? Even though we know what we are doing is not sustainable? Even though we know there is no way to stop the impending collapse? Even though we know we should be doing whatever we can to soften the landing for those who will have to live through it?

What will you do? How will you decide?

Change Your Mind

Let’s do something together

Express Your Self