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RE: [existlist] Re: I'll have fries and a side of existentialism with that...

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  • Ryan Dewald
    If I may weigh in on this. The organizational structure of the Third Reich was, as we all have been told a gazillion times, fascist. We have also been told
    Message 1 of 193 , Aug 31, 2001
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      If I may weigh in on this. The organizational structure of the Third Reich
      was, as we all have been told a gazillion times, fascist. We have also been
      told as many times that fascism is evil. I'll leave the judgement up to
      each of us, but I do think that I can make a case for stating that fascism,
      and therefore Hitler's Reich are in conflict with the notion of successful
      existential fruition, as a person, as an individual.

      The Third Reich co-opted Nietche and Hegel to do away with concepts of
      social propriety that would otherwise have militated against singling out
      races and classes and systematically killing them. However the Reich did
      not grant individuals the same liberty to devine their own path and value
      system. In fact such individuality was vigorously opposed.

      Ironically, when a person is subject to such a regime, and that regime
      collapses, s/he is faced very prominently with the reality that their
      leadership and values are vacuuous and often existential crisis ensues.

      I wonder what the best overarching governing structure would be for a nation
      of existentialists. Anarchy is a clear favorite. What about democratic
      capitalism? In such a regime, one has a lot of freedom to evade dominant
      social norms. However the possibility for mob-rule are high (and proven
      frequently in the U.S.)

      Anyway, sorry if that's entirely off-topic, but it came to mind and I had a
      need to express. I'm new to the group too. So "hello everyone!" I look
      forward to reading the dialogue.

      Ryan


      -----Original Message-----
      From: William Harris [mailto:bhvwd@...]
      Subject: Re: [existlist] Re: I'll have fries and a
      side of
      existentialism with that...

      Eduard, Certainly the US was not beaten in Viet
      Nam as badly as was
      Germany in WW2. Hitler was an Iron cross awarded
      vet of a defeated army.
      Viet era vets here suffer a particular
      degredation even within the service
      itself. They are not trusted and are often
      excluded. It must be particurally
      galling to preform admirably under fire and then
      be ostrasized for it. That
      negativism flowered brutally in the brown shirts.
      Hitler was actually
      rebelling against the colonial powers of Europe.
      He was trying something new,
      but he was very embittered and the hate and
      negativity flowerd along with
      his movement. Viet vets have seething resentments
      here. With forecasts of
      world wide economic downturn, they could become a
      strident voice at the core
      of a new constituancy. Old warriors are not
      frightened by words, they have
      gone far beyond them befor. Bille
    • Eduard Alf
      The idea of Serendipity comes from an Arabic tale of the three princes of Serendip who had the faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident. It has
      Message 193 of 193 , Oct 5, 2001
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        The idea of Serendipity comes from an Arabic tale of the three princes of
        Serendip who had the faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident.
        It has nothing to do with religion or the divine or of metaphysical
        presence. The application of Serendipity requires that one be open to
        things new.

        As to Occams razor, I much prefer the definition that, "sometimes the best
        answer is the simplest".

        eduard
        -----Original Message-----
        From: William Harris [mailto:bhvwd@...]
        Sent: Friday, October 05, 2001 12:18 PM
        To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [existlist] Existentialism as Industrial Tao


        Ryan, Occams razor is a tool of logic that postulates: In a situation
        where no
        definite causality is apparent, the most likely of agents is the best
        choice.
        Divine intervention always takes a leap of faith and since no natural
        laws are
        broken there must be a more proximate solution. Where did this concept of
        serendipidy come from? I have seen a movie with John Cusac that deals
        with it.
        It seems to hold the attention of the under thirty crowd. Your view of it
        Ryan
        seems very normal but others take it as some manifestation of metaphysical
        presence. The steel gerder in the shape of a cross seems to be garnishing
        a
        serendipidous following. I always preferred a Oujie board so I could rub
        knees
        with some cute coed. That was serendipidy, Bill

        Ryan Dewald wrote:

        > Heya Bill,
        >
        > What's Occam's razor?
        >
        > Serendipity is one of my guilty pleasures. There is enough randomness,
        in
        > my opinion to account for the occasional unlikely encounter, like say,
        > running into a high school fling on a remote beach in Thailand. Despite
        > believing that it is nothing but chance, I still file a little piece of
        the
        > event under "magic" just because it makes me smile.
        >
        > There is a really good reason, I believe, to NOT consider serendipity a
        > divine event. If you leave it to the Higher Powers, you're not going to
        > help along those occurances. But if you consider the events leading up
        to a
        > serrendipitous encounter, you're likely to come up with at least a few
        > important principles that form a pattern of serendipity.
        >
        > For example, smiling at strangers, looking around rooms, helping out
        people
        > liberally all contribute to an extended network of people you know.
        These
        > actions also inspire others to do the same making it more likely in the
        > future that someone who happens to have jumpercables will stop and help
        you
        > in the middle of Death Valley at 2 in the morning.
        >
        > As for religion: I have a 2-bit definition for that too. I'm a big fan
        of
        > 2-bit definitions. Mind you it doesn't define a cause of religion, just
        what
        > all religions do.
        >
        > Religion: A story, real or otherwise, that explains from whence we
        came,
        > how ought we live our lives and what happens to us when we die.
        >
        > I wouldn't care what people believed in religion-wise if it didn't have
        > direct impacts on me and my life. Bill, the difference between
        recreation
        > and religion is that when I go biking, I don't tell other people how
        they
        > have to live their lives. When I practice religion, I often do (where
        this
        > is not true, I have no problem with religion).
        >
        > Even when religion doesn't impact other people, its benefits to the
        > practicing individual must be debited against the disadvantage of
        holding an
        > incorrect world-view. I'm not calling any one religion wrong, but they
        > can't all be right, which means some people have deluded views of the
        world
        > (not a real news flash there hey?). They are less able to respond to
        > stimulus around them in the most long-term healthy way becuase they have
        > incorrect information. blah blah... science blah blah... evolution.
        have a
        > great friday everyone!
        >
        > -----Original Message-----
        > From: William Harris [mailto:bhvwd@...]
        > Sent: Friday, October 05, 2001 9:10 AM
        > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        > Subject: Re: [existlist] Existentialism as Industrial Tao
        >
        > Eduard, In order to combat excessive drinking I have four major
        activities I
        > can
        > engage in at almost any time. This group is beginning to encroach on
        some
        > of my
        > play time, and I like it. I am reminded of the concept of the fruit of
        the
        > poisoined tree. Religion rests on a basis of unreality. Many use it like
        I
        > use
        > skiing or bicycling, as a diversion to keep me out of the whore house or
        > saloon. O.K. but as Stevie Wonder says, "When you believe in things you
        > dont
        > understand you suffer superstition anyway" Which brings me to a
        question
        > about
        > a new to me reason of faith I was exposed to recently. A occurance
        referred
        > to
        > as serendipidy seems to give some a reason to see divine guidance in
        > temporal
        > happenings. I asked the "serendipidist" if any physical laws were broken
        in
        > these unlikely chains of events. He said no, but the occurances were so
        > ordered
        > as to remove the possibility of chance happening. He therefore infers
        divine
        > intervention. Imust ask him if he has heard of Occams razor. Any
        comments?
        > Bill
        >
        > Eduard Alf wrote:
        >
        > > Bill,
        > >
        > > I would suggest that there is always a way back to simple serendipity.
        It
        > > is a matter of letting go. Letting go of the things that we consider
        to
        > be
        > > of importance, yet really do not make much of a difference in the end.
        > >
        > > I like the definition of religion which is, "A cause, principle, or
        > activity
        > > pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion".
        > >
        > > The thing that we are seeking is a singularity upon which to focus our
        > > minds. The problem that we face is that we have too many
        alternatives,
        > > especially in the Western World. The existentialist concept is
        laudable,
        > > but it still leaves the question of making "what" choice. The
        religious
        > > fundamentalist has a much better time of it. His/her path is defined
        in
        > the
        > > most narrow sense. It is easier to fly an airplane into the World
        Trade
        > > Centre than it is to find a way to balance one's bank accounts or
        deciding
        > > whether to go out to a restaurant or to order in a pizza.
        > >
        > > Going into the woods is an attempt to cut down on the choices. With
        the
        > > thought that with less choice the greater the chance of choosing the
        right
        > > one. But as you imply, such expedition, does not really solve much.
        What
        > > is desired is to find the woods in our urban lifestyle. And any tool
        > which
        > > facilitates this end [be it existentialism, religion or metaphysics]
        is of
        > > worth the candle.
        > >
        > > eduard
        > > -----Original Message-----
        > > From: William Harris [mailto:bhvwd@...]
        > > Sent: Thursday, October 04, 2001 3:28 PM
        > > To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
        > > Subject: Re: [existlist] Existentialism as Industrial Tao
        > >
        > > Ryan, thats rich,"a good pithing" made my day. I just returned from
        > three
        > > days
        > > in the woods. I go there to escape but then come back here to escape
        > from
        > > that.
        > > The idealism of the simple life seems to appeal to thinkers. We are
        much
        > > to
        > > needed here to go live with the bears. You notice I said needed not
        > > appreciated.
        > > Slapping neandertahls upside the head does not add to ones
        popularity. I
        > > learned
        > > a great deal in comparative anatomy so as I watch instinctive
        behaviour
        > > operant
        > > in animals I get a better fix on our progression beyond. Metaphysics
        and
        > > religion are memorised behaviors not much different from instinct.
        The
        > > spark of
        > > innovation which once fuled them is long since extinguished, yet the
        > > dreary
        > > train of thought trudges on in dim intellects. I see little chance
        of
        > > utopia
        > > with these raw materials. I also see no way back to simple
        serendipity.
        > > Bill
        > >
        > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        > >
        > >
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