Saturday, November 12, 2011

An Empirical Proof That Satan Exists

We have all struggled through the plight of doing what is right versus what is popular. The wise, loving, rational side of our conscience urges us to do our duty. The wily, hateful, instinctive side of our conscience nudges us to do what everyone else is doing to avoid a drop in social standing.

God is an individualist doing De's own thing without much regard for community approval or disapproval.

God's orientation to and treatment of nature reveals who God is by how God conducts Deself,  while encountering nature. God created nature and supervises nature. God decisions and actions are original, creative and alter how nature is, looks and operates. In society, we humans are to live like God does.

Satan is more similar to Nature than is God, but Satan is not the same as Nature. Nature is that battleground, which along with society, are where good and evil duke it out. Satan has immersed Saself in nature and arises up out of nature to infest and take over communities everywhere possible.

Satan is a demagogue and is the leader of the pack. As the hidden, invisible leader of the social pack, all social labels, ranking, the official narrative, the names, ranks and roles assigned and the relationships allowed and nurtured are directed by his whispering into the ears of his social favorites.

Satan is a joiner so joining becomes the desired trait to display in order for social worth and rank to be allotted to each person in question. Satan's brilliantly manipulates the human herding instinct to keep humans natural, subjugated, communally directed, ignorant, oppressed, exploited and yet proud of their wretched lot. In the group what is bad is called good and all or ordered to accept this. What is good is called bad and all are ordered to avoid this. This Big Lie technique has billions of joiners convinced that their lives are admirable and worth replicating.

In the group, in the social setting, is where Satan's core power base is operating. This accursed center of darkness is a natural, supernatural and social phenomena that makes it exceedingly difficult to dislodge and defeat. Little in human history has wrecked so many lives as that social craving to become or remain popular at any cost.  That this primordial motive weighs so heavily upon human minds is proof that Satan the puppet-master is at work here, adroitly pulling the strings like Satan always has.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Maintain That Balance

One need not be hardheaded or rigid about living according to one selected life plan, but, nevertheless, one should construct a wise plan and then generally follow it.

It is no secret that I promote the strenuous life as did Teddy
Roosevelt. One should self-realize one's potential while making  a living and living an ordinary, everyday lifestyle.

I promote generally maintaining the balance between making money to support one's family and doing all the mundane chores that fill up daily life, while adjoining this carrying out of basic duties with leading an artistic life of adventure and original output at what one is brilliant and productive at.

Some wise thinker once advised that we have our feet on the ground while our head is up in the clouds. Being grounded keeps one focused, practical, humbled and practical. The passionate, fierce pure-in-concentration-and-energy-applied artist or idealist can do things, the fruit of which are destructive to society as her greed, cruelty, ruthlessness, fact distortion and unreasonableness accept no limits or restraint.

The life lived by that idealist is not only without balance, but she has thrown it under the bus. As her self-esteem plummets, her self-loathing can drive her to execute acts of great evil. In her hubris and arrogance, she was unable to heed God's injunction to maintain the balance.

Learning A Bit More About The Ways Of Nature

The great Minnesota deer hunting season is underway. We participated once again, and enjoyed ourselves immensely. It was my most successful hunt ever. Why do I say this when we harvested does in contrast to when I shot an 8-point 250 pound buck three years ago?

For years I hunted alone and rarely sighted even a doe. I was totally raw and unskilled, enjoying little success considering the level of effort and expense invested. For a few years in northwestern Minnesota we party hunted with some friends and began to harvest animals, and see deer. But our success and outcome was due to dependency upon the skill and knowledge of deer and terrain as shared with us by our friends.

We bought a smaller property 89 miles north of town. Last year we hunted alone and again did not even see one deer, antlered or anterless of either gender.

At my job this summer I worked with the plumber Mike who owns a property around Aitkin. They enjoy successful hunts almost every fall. I asked him what his secret was. He related that over time he got better and better as he learned his property and how the deer moved about on it, where they fed, traveled and slept.

Here was a man with a simple system of hunting but it worked over time. I knew that we would apply Mike's technique. We had a deer stand and a ground blind to hunt from. I had spent some time scouting the property and knew from from personal observation and from knowing neighbors where the deer quartered, traveled and fed. The afternoon before opener I was staking the tent and putting a metal folding chair in the blind/tent. I heard loud grunting, and snorting about 30 feet away. I knew it was a dominant buck very close by. I sat on the chair and did not move. After a couple of minutes I looked out and watched the 8-point, 200 pound buck amble away leisurely to the north until he disappeared.

Thirty minutes later I was sitting in the blind 800 feet away enjoying the afternoon sun when I watched a 4-point buck trail a 130 pound doe northwest until they were out of sight. They did not know I was there. I would not see those two again for the remainder of the hunt.

Saturday passed with many hours in the stand (the strong wind was southerly). About 11:00 a.m., out of the corner of my right eye, that big buck burst into a full trot and ran around the swamp into some timber to the southeast. I thought he was scared and had busted me. That was not the case. He sniffed out an eligible lady in heat and pretty soon these 150 pound lady came trotting passed me, with him sauntering 50 feet behind, paying her rapt attention. I did not see them again, but Sunday morning we filled out our tags with does, from the same stand. Why did I not shoot at the buck? It would have been a running shot and I likely would have missed, wounded the animal or sent lead flying for no reason.

I have always known that people that are 'lucky" fisherman or hunters really are mostly skilled predators, who are tenacious, patient researchers that learn to know the ways, habits and thinking of the prey they seek after.

It took me twelve years to gain some level of skill as a deer hunter. I feel now that I have made it, though in future years there will be learning more about the property and where to post or stand, and how these beautiful, clever creatures use cover to move about on their own highways unseen like ghosts only a few hundred feet--or closer--from the house. Sunday morning when we bagged our does, I spooked a deer in the dark about 30 feet away as I left the farmhouse to go out to the stand.

The hunt was a chance to measure our skill against these savvy, worthy opponents. To enjoy the woods, sunsets, blue jays and ruffed grouse were rewarding extras.

Only this fall do I feel that I have made it as a deer hunter, with the forest-craft and hardiness to make it on one's own. To become somewhat skilled at what one endeavors to master is an exhilarating feeling like few others. Finally, to do something well bolsters the self-esteem.

We will have some annual hunts go better than others, but we have broken the code. never again need we be dependent on others to succeed in this area. Never again will we not have command of the skills basic to wrapping our arms around a property, a chunk of Nature, knowing how to proceed and work with her local, special features.

Friday, November 4, 2011


There are many emotions that propel humans to act. Some of them are positive in influence, and some are quite destructive in impact.

One of the most--if not the most--destructive emotions felt by people is jealousy. The reader may ask why I bother dusting off this old criticism for new visitation when this subject was covered in the Bible thousands of years ago.

Notice that the subject has been covered for thousands of years and yet the moral imperative as traditionally brandished by well-meant reformers has had little lasting influence.

Note that jealousy is the emotion of envy communicated between two people where one doubts the trueness of the other's affections, or is torqued off at attention shown to her. That kind of jealousy is not what I am discussing here.

The very dangerous jealousy occurs as Muslims are jealous of the more successful Israelis or how non-individuators hate and mistreat an individuator. This type of jealousy has driven many collective acts of evil and systemic persecution through out human history. No force can rival jealousy in retarding human advancement. How does this play out?

The individuator is independent, self-reliant and actualizing his potentiality. He is psychologically secure. He loves himself and is at peace with himself. How others, superior or inferior to him in some way or talent, perform is irrelevant. He enjoys being free, neither controlling another, or being controlled by her.

He applauds the other that does well and who is pursuing his dream.

It is the joiners that are jealous and worried about what their neighbors are up to and achieving. No one is to be free and apart. No one can be successful. No one can leave the group and do his own thing. All must loathe themselves, indulge themselves, baby themselves and expect little from themselves. All are to keep an eye on their neighbor to prevent anyone from rising up and amounting to something. Where neighbors watch over each other, jealously spying on each other to keep everyone down, they are reminding everyone that is is never acceptable to stand out and excel.

Jealousy is a groupist, wicked emotion that we must grow out of. Class warfare and robbing from the neighbor what he has earned are  variations of this theme.

When we are jealous of another, we will take steps to humble him, and such atrocious acts hurt and hold back all. Dispense with this jiggery-pokery.

Be free. Be well. Rejoice for another as he succeeds, while taking your steps to succeed too.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Abraham Maslow Revisited

The other day I stumbled across the famous Maslowian triangle illustrating his hierarchy of the five level of needs to be successively met in order that a person can move up the scale, finally reaching the commendable state of self-actualizing and enjoying peak experiences.

Indirectly more than directly his humanistic psychology has profoundly influenced my own intellectual development. His theory of self-realization has totally intruded upon my worldview, permeating deep and wide. Indeed, I am convinced that this is the duty that God summons us to practice.

I am no Maslowian scholar but here are a few reflections about his work that have come to mind. First, his school of psychology seems to be how the world works, and presents people with a chance to lead a most fruitful life.

Second, he is incorrect in proposing that to self-actualize is an innate drive shaping people's life ambitions. Oh that innate drive is there, but it is a weak, subordinate drive beaten down by groupist living with its concomitant emphasis on selflessness, laziness, same-thinking, deadly conservatism, low-self esteem (It takes a strong ego to believe that one is worthy of fulfilling one's potential and be recognized and rewarded by the self, others and God for so performing.)

Third, as we learn how to live and so that we can raise generation after generation of self-actualizers, then instilling self-love, a strong sense of ego, the drive and original thinking of an artist, rational interests ambition and work ethic, then each child so raided will individuate successfully.

Finally, where the culture rears youths to so live and experience, the four lower levels of being satisfied are less important, for if one or more is missing, the supportive milieu can launch the child right to the fifth level and they can fill in the missing levels as they can in future years.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

What To Do About Suffering

Awhile back I was listening to the incomparable Dennis Praeger on talk radio. His subject that day was that bad things happen to good people (they do, and good things happen to bad people). He advised that people should ask for a heavier load not a lighter load. I am not sure that I agree.

Praeger said our burdens sent by God are a test of faith (I agree). Praeger admonishes that without suffering there is no free will and we are just robots. I would add that robots suffer too, but that their suffering is not meaningful.

I think he is correct in claiming that suffering makes us reflect and introspect and ask questions of God, life and ourselves. It is also so that how we react to suffering indicates our moral character. A good woman takes what comes and envelopes it in love, reason and flexibility to make things better all around. A bad woman ends up despising herself further after suffering so much, and she must lash out internally an externally to exact a sense of revenge for her suffering. Her negative reaction to suffering needlessly extends the boundary of suffering in the world. And it is the type of suffering that degrades and hurts, not ennoble and uplift the victims.

Beyond, some identifiable point, suffering and pain felt degrade rather than exalt the individual. Suffering cannot be eliminated from life but it can be minimized. What events unfold upon us, sent by God, Fate or Satan (Identifying the source of a happening and identifying it as bringing joy or suffering to us is not easy to differentiate.).

How we react to bad thing happening to us is what determines our moral orientation. When we convert what happens to us into an impetus stimulating us to make things a little better for others and ourselves, that is an act of love.

Suffering leaves us shocked, disturbed and discombobulated. That uprootedness makes us alert, wondering and looking for answers and reassurance. At that point we are alive and sentient beings of free will. W have become accountable for our actions. The steps that we take in response to suffering renders the steps taken to be memorable, significant and meaningful

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Time To Get Better

Why is there so much suffering, cruelty and injustice afflicting the world? First of all we are all sinners doing bad things to others while bad thing are dumped upon us. Second, bad living has become custom guiding each new generation into sinful, wayward misbehaving.

Third, this world belongs to Lucifer so wicked people ruling here and imposing their nasty ways is to be expected.

You may ask what can be done about it. The best answer is to adopt  a more progressive, civilized moral program, which over time will make a huge difference.

Altruism, our traditional ethical mode, teaches people to be groupist, selfless and to loathe the self. These self-approaches render the persons so regarding the self into slaves of Lucifer, for those are the characteristics comprising his personality.

Egoism, the modern ethical program, will train its adherents to love the self, to be self-interested and to live alone and apart. That is where and how God lives, and so emulating God makes one more like De to be rewarded by De.

Monday, September 12, 2011

To Whom Do You Belong?

In Before The Sabbath, Eric Hoffer wrote the following: "Nations tend to see their great men as the expression of their quintessence and uniqueness. Great men are also assumed to embody the spirit of their age. Actually, the essential characteristic of a great man is his timelessness and universality. The great man of any age is our contemporary.

It is by their commonness that  people are linked to their time. Hence, by how much a great man is of his age by so much is he less great."

What does Hoffer mean here and what does it indicate? The great-souled person is a thorough-going individual. He will be a loner not a joiner. He will be a brilliant, extraordinary, uncommon and accomplished  loner. In his social circle, he will encounter few or no peers, and have few companions or friends. To be great is to be misunderstood. It is to be regarded as an eccentric stranger, not quite respectable or credible.

No one can self-realize under the Mavellonialist system without separating from her peers and dedicating her life to self-development, a lifestyle that is an active prayer submitted daily for God's approval. As she develops as a person, she reaches greatness at some point, and that journey has landed her beyond the border of commonness and everyday interests.

The average person, undeveloped and immersed in mundane matters seriously regarded by the local in-crowd, will belong to that immediate generation. He is bound by local time and space.

As the Mavellonialist system spreads and gains wide acceptance, it will become that tradition out of which the majority of citizens live lives of great-souledness. They will be timeless and universal too. They will be contemporary with people from all cultures, and all generations.

The self-realizer is objective and global. The average existent is subjective and local.

As a corollary, it occurred to me that if the self-realizer is answering God's call, and in the process, becomes great and timeless. This could serve as a proof for God's existence: if individuating leads to greatness and connecting with eternal things, then the origin of these beckoning messages is objective, developing, accomplished, timeless, universal and individualist.  This source exists and welcomes doers.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Love Truth First

Dennis Praeger may be the wisest man of this generation. He recommends that each thinker love truth before peace and justice. Only one that loves the truth primarily will be a realist about evil bothering the world. That realistic thinker is still an optimist.

Praeger castigates Leftists naive about the chance of peace and justice in the Middle East. Their delusional optimism compels them to force the Israelis to make concession after concession as if they are the cause of the problem.

The truth is that their Muslim neighbors hate them and have no qualms about morally and religiously plotting their destruction. There will not be peace in the Middle East until the Israelis are wiped out.

The Left has never understood or appreciated the pure fanaticism that drives Islam, especially in its mass movement, vigorous phase. There is and has never been a more committed enemy in the world. They learn nothing. They forgive nothing. They hate Jewish infidels forever and will never cease working for their annihilation and elimination from holy places.

Adherents of Islam must accept the truth about their faith: it is the most dangerous and destabilizing world religion that the world has ever known. Couple that with missiles and weapons of destruction and they have the ability and desire to bring about Armageddon and the end of the world. This theocratic culture is tribal, warrior-driven, violence-loving, empire-building and out for world conquest. They are on the march and the denial of their wicked culture by the Left will bring the world injustice, mass suffering, world war and a new Dark Age. It may bring about the end of human kind.

All Muslims must modernize and abjure claims to use violence against non-believers and believers alike. Chances are nothing will get better until it is way to late if even then.

Dennis Praeger

Monday, September 5, 2011

Labor Day

Ever since Adam and Eve were ejected from the Garden of Eden by Yahweh, it is has been the human assignment to work for their daily bread. Some have classified the requirement to work as the human curse. Others, more level-headed, would ascribe to working the opportunity to become fully human.

We work because we must. We must earn enough money to support our families, to pay for the basics, to keep the wolf from the door.

We work because it is adult behavior expected of us by our parents, siblings, spouse, children, neighbors and society in general.

We work because our personal American identity and value are inextricably interwoven with what we do to make a living. Fellow Americans rate who and what we are by what we do professionally. This commendable practice and custom tells us many things about Americans.

First, to work is to be alive and to work is to be esteemed by others. Second, humans are naturally lazy and passive. Only the culture that values and rewards industry and activism will be a progressive society every reforming, prospering, changing and growing. Third, this society of the common man, historically, rated each person by what he did. A society of aristocrats/drones would not prize what a worker made with his hands. A corollary to this culture that expects personal industriousness is that none can restore his laurels. He is only as successful as what he did yesterday, and he must prove himself tomorrow and forever.

The moderate philosopher would advise that leisure, play and luxury have their place. The healthy adult must arise each day to work for his daily bread. He must also pursue the self-chosen path to personal fulfillment best matching who he is and what wants to become. Work makes that possible.

Agatha Christie in her novel Nemesis describes the expert to select who will be the best at that endeavor. That person must be experienced, knowledgeable and skilled. The best in her field will be the one who has a flair for this task.

May this Labor Day be a pleasant respite for you. Conduct your vision quest and discover what it is that you have a flair for. Plan you work and work your plan. This way your dream will come true, bestowing glory and accolades upon you. The world gains too, as you have made it a little better and made people a little smarter through you life-long efforts.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Bringing morality to rioters

Katherine Kersten, in her Star Tribune column, on August 28, 2011, lamented that something is very wrong in the West and in England in particular. She and her sources blame the outburst by riotous looters as emblematic of 50 years of moral abandonment of the Western tradition of self-restraint. I agree.

Traditional Judeo-Christian morality has been supplanted by materialism (I agree) and radical individualism (I disagree strongly here. The superficial individualism exhibited by an assembled mob of lawless youths arises rather from their sacrifice of the self to collective thuggery.)

We cannot solely return to our classical moral and religious heritage. Of course, all children must be raised by a mom and a dad, with a conscience instilled, within the value system of self-development accompanied by ethical self-restraint.

Morality springs from faith, be it Christian or non-Christian. The internal desires and passions that drive each youth must be controlled by that well-brought youth, as she never allows her peers to direct her choices or behavior.

Morality and religion are largely discernible even if not objectively knowable. Their probable certainty is certain enough and universal enough to apply to all members of society without bias or unfairness.

Kersten insists that to remoralize society and re-religionize society are the ways to avoid the ethics of lawless, subjective hedonsim. She calls it right: Out of faith grows morality. Out of morality grows the virtuous citizen that makes democratic system possible, while maintaining civil order.

Like I believe, I think she believes in original sin. Unlike I believe, she is a conservative altruist, whereas I am a conservative egoist.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Rioting In England

It is shocking and depressing to spectate while law and order disintegrated the last few days in several major cities in England. Rioters and looters rampaged, attacked, stole and destroyed private property. How did this happen in one of the most civilized countries on earth?

My first response is that it can happen anywhere for the veneer of civilized behavior restraining the masses can be shedded quickly and easily when mob fever is rampant and coursing through the veins of assembled young people, angry, unemployed, without focus or self-censoring.

My second response is that each moral agent is half-demon and half-angel. Where utter unity and self-effacement are demanded and complied with, the gathered young people can do anything to anyone. Anything goes. Our demonic side as ascendant.

Bad news can be transformed into good news were parents of such young people wise and in control of their youngsters. There would have been no thousands of young people to  get together and tear down society. Where youngsters are supervised, taught to work and dream, and be working hard towards their personal dream in line with their modern version of their vision quest (already undertaken, pondered upon with meaning assigned and a course of action for the future laid out), rioting does not occur.

Were these youngsters trained to develop as Mavericks pursuing their enlightened, self-actualizing self-interest, they would have neither the time, opportunity or inclination to run in packs, preying upon society and neighbors.

With about 95% probability, the angelic sides of children's natures can be nurtured and accentuated to the degree and point that it becomes natural to live an angelic adult life. Where parents begin to so raise their children, spontaneous rioting will become a rare occasion indeed.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Regretting so much when it is too late

It is easier to get into trouble than to dig one's way out of it once one realizes that one has made the wrong choice.

For example, we often will drink way too much, becoming very drunk. Once we get sick, cannot drive a car and will miss work the next day, then we admit we should not have screwed up again.

What is that perverse streak in human nature that makes us misbehave? There may be many motives, including our being wired to do the wrong thing: this original sin is our rebellious streak against obeying God's natural law that makes us flout it. Another motive is that the pressure for leading the "perfect life" is more than we can bear, so sinning relieves the pressure for awhile.

For many misbehaving and sinning are simply fun. Other fill their life with cheap drama: They sin during the week so they can confess, repent and atone on the weekend, perhaps even announcing it in front of the congregation on Sunday morning. Returning to the saintly path is much more a poignant,  sweet victory after a binge of real sinning. The prodigal daughter returns to the fold.

God wants us to sin a little and to hate a little, but mostly love and be virtuous. We cannot ever be perfect angels anyway. Less drama and more consistent performance is order. God will be more pleased with us as our actions and words become less theatrical and more sincere. We likely will get to heaven sooner. We will also see an increase in our self-esteem.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Job Fulfillment

It used to be in America that the man of the house was the breadwinner, likely to sole earner of a paycheck. His identity, his sense of self-worth and his sense of purpose were all wrapped up in the job he had.

Of course this has all changed and that is acceptable, even desirable. Here is my question:

What elements derived from the  patriarchal model of wage-earning are admirable, and, once extricated from their source, would serve as exemplary characteristics for any self-realizer to model?

First, God put us here to work and develop our God-given talents to the nth degree. Our identity should be inseparable from the work we do and the way that we go about it.

Second, leading a busy work life should be highlighted as the most purposeful life imaginable.

Third, doing something worthwhile and creating or bringing into existence something of worth corresponds to and should correspond to the type and caliber of activity proving the doer's worth. His sense of worth is not just how he feels about himself, but it is also a matter confirmed in action by his substantive output.

To be is to do, and impressive doing renders the doer worthy of accolades, respect and praise.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The Truth

The truth will set you free, but it sure can hurt too. There is no way to love God and live the authentic life like God does unless one receives the truth, lives in the truth and struggles to live according to the truth.
Discover the truth. Learn to recognize its presence or the lack thereof in personal and acquaintance speech and behavior.
Those living in the truth and by the truth will not portray good people as evil, while depicting evil people as good. They can and must call them as they see them, allowing the chips of life to fall where they will.
Good people are as they do and when they say what they really mean.
Bad people are as they do and when they say what they really mean.
 Jesus taught 2, 000 years ago that a tree is judged by the fruit that it produces, and the adage is as apt today as it was then.

Just show up

Just show up and your very presence will make a huge difference as staff in nursing homes caring for grandma, teachers at school, city council members and elected officials behave better when they realize that the public is scrutinizing every step that they take.
Step Two is unleashed when a group of people show up in sufficient numbers to seek to implement the political program, selected and agreed upon in advance to showing up.
They can transform and redirect the way their community, state and government are run.



Thinkers like Hoffer pooh-pooh the romantic stereotype of the creative genius as that socially inept crank, dreaming up new concepts and making new products out of the blue, in a blinding flash of original, brilliant, imaginative work. He fabricates something from nothing, generated in a complete vacuum devoid of ancestral or social input to build upon or to reference by comparing and contrasting what is with what one imagines that can exist or come to pass.
More typical, of the garden-variety individuators to be born and to design and to make new concepts, poetry forms and to introduce technological wonders in the near future, will be their stunning aptitude for regarding what is commonplace in a new way, or to build upon what others have done before them, going a little at a time beyond those that got them this far. These pioneers appreciate and readily acknowledge their antecedents and helpful mentors. They build upon what others before them have accomplished. And the trail of development is detectable and obvious.


Saturday, April 2, 2011

Breaking through routine

The lazy, negative, immature guy, unable to hold a steady job, has no discipline or focus. For one grown up in mental outlook as well as in years of living, boredom must become an irrelevant response to drudgery and repetition of duties at work. Monotony is what he will tolerate to get a paycheck while holding a permanent position with a respectable firm.
Joining and staying a productive, wage-earning member of the middle class public is the basis of individuating. Each mature grown-up will earn his bread full time while self-actualizing on the side. Should he be able to make enough money at his sideline to do it full time, more power to him,
Each citizen of adult years is to take on the adult role. Constant leisure, pleasure-seeking, playing, ease-seeking and being supported by others are games that he plays only in his spare time. In the main, he does his duty and makes his living, supporting his family and himself. Doing his duty makes him happy in a deep, fundamental, sound fashion. He loves the self but it is a disciplined self, not a self-indulgent self.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Nature of the Observer

What makes one observer a penetrating judge of people’s character when the assessment of the same person by another observer renders a characterization that completely misses the mark? Why is one investor instantly leery of the sales pitch of a con man while another investor is quite impressed by his sales pitch?

The answers to both questions lay in the nature of the observers. The first observer is an individualist: he knows himself well: he sees himself pretty much as he is, so he has nothing to prove, run from or deny in seeing others as they are.

The second, gullible observer is a joiner, only superficially in touch with his inner self. Because he knows himself not, his perceptual fog and self-deceptive, perceptual preconceiving carries over in how he misconceives people that he encounters.

In the group setting, the second, gullible observer will be far quicker to sense the mood, the mores, the clothes worn by, the fashions advertised and watchwords passed among the insiders. The first, isolated, outsider/beholder will miss most of these communicative flags, thus highlighting his apartness and tone deafness to social subtleties. In the world of illusions held and shared, there are subtle signals sent to tell the attentive, responding, second observer when to twist and turn, like two hundred starlings flying as one black cloud, without error or misstep.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Laurence A. Ramsey 1920 - 2011

 Dad died on January 30, 2011. He was over 90 years of age and died in his sleep in his own bed. He lived life on his own terms. He died on his own terms. He was fiercely independent and made us promise not to put him in a nursing home.
He was an intellectual and a farmer. He was what I referred to as a conservative hippie. He admired the capitalist system and spoke glowingly about other farmers that were efficient, competent and prosperous businessmen. Yet, he was an idealist and conservationist long before being green was the prevalent ideology of the ruling class. He had many delightful experiments and projects that likely had few practical implications, or profitable prospects. He was a most interesting man to visit with.
He admired the entrepreneurial sorts, but money was not his ultimate motivator. He occasionally talked about eking out a living.
He was the unheralded Pembina County version of the Renaissance Man. He was a brilliant horticulturist. He was a Class A rancher. He was an accomplished carpenter. He could do some foundry work. He was a fair plumber and electrician. He was very handy.
He enjoyed philosophy, birdwatching, some hunting, geology, local history and Indian artifacts. He was very intelligent and interested in everything.
He was hot-tempered. He was smart, very skilled, and knew it. He could be arrogant. He could be sarcastic. He had his favorites among the children. He could be sexist, but he made my adopted Korean children love him, because he really welcomed them as he did the other 8 Irish grandchildren.
He was a World War II vet. He was married to Helen O’Sullivan for over 63 years. He was a skilled, fastidious technician, a well respected civil engineer.
The village priest at Dad’s funeral said that Laurence struggled with faith. I disagree. Three years ago I asked him if he believed in God. Dad thought for a minute, and then replied, “There is so much order and regular process in the way the universe operates. That cannot be an accident. Someone set that up and guides it.” I believe that Dad was a Deist like I am.
Dad is resting is some level of heaven right now. He was very kind. He was proud of his family and protected them. He loved animals and they loved him. He cared for the sick and disabled as best he knew how.
 He had a kind heart, and I believe that moral goodness flows out of spiritual goodness, even were the kind person to proclaim himself to be an atheist.
Two anecdotes: in about 1985 (maybe earlier), it was winter and he was gone somewhere. He left careful, detailed instructions for feeding his cows. They were fed hay on the south side of the grove in the snow. They were not to be rushed. When done eating, they would lie down and chew their cuds for an hour, out of the prevailing winter winds, soaking up the sun. A little after noon, they would start drifting through the grove towards the heated water fountain to get their drink. I was to open the gate to allow them to get their drink. About four o’clock they would be fed hay again in the yard where they could then lie down and rest for the night out of the wind.
I fed them on the south side of the grove. I gave them one hour to eat. I then herded them into the yard. They got their drink and their afternoon feeding by two o’clock and then I was off to do something else off the farm. Most ranchers feed the way I did. Dad did not believe in pushing animals to meet one’s needs, goals or deadlines. He worked with them as they were and coaxed them along at their pace, the way that they wanted to muddle along.
Dad did not like to go against natural patterns and behaviors. I am much more human-centered, activistic, goal-driven. I am not process-centered like Dad was.
Another time I visited him in those years and spent a Saturday with him in the winter. He did not seem to have a dog at his farm site but he had a half-wild, huge tabby farm cat that had wandered in from the neighbors to be adopted and fed.  I watched in wonder for 3 or 4 hours as Dad worked around the yard. The bond between him and that tomcat was so strong that where ever he went, the cat would like down near by, moving and removing several times to stay near him. Dad was not even aware of the cat. No cat has ever followed me like that.
He was ambitious in his funny, artistic way. He ended up with about 700 acres of land, modest middle class farm machinery, and a large family.
His journey here is over now. The next phase for him has now begun. He is headed the right way. One day we will meet again.