Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 13 Share on Twitter 1 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
Exclusive to OpEdNews:
Positive News   

Are we critical thinkers or "useful idiots?"

Become a Premium Member Would you like to know how many people have read this article? Or how reputable the author is? Simply sign up for a Advocate premium membership and you'll automatically see this data on every article. Plus a lot more, too.
Author 71296
Message Blair Gelbond

Thinking gorilla
Thinking gorilla
(Image by Tambako the Jaguar from flickr)
  Details   DMCA

This piece is written to support us in "thinking about our thinking."

Although the subject can at first seem rather dry, the issues are of the utmost importance in our personal lives and the survival of our species.

*

Why is it that we don't express the natural response of vehemently protesting being exploited and deceived, again and again? Why do we imbibe the pap that passes as news, instead of demanding truth? Why does our thinking tend to be narrow, rather than penetrating?

Introduction

Field Marshal Göring - one of Hitler's earliest, longest-lasting associates, the top German military figure during World War II, and for a long-time Hitler's designated successor, said:

"Why, of course, the people don't want war," Göring shrugged. "Why would some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best that he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece. Naturally, the common people don't want war; neither in Russia nor in England nor in America, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood.

"But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a Parliament or a Communist dictatorship.

"The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

**

We have just passed the anniversary of 9/11. What stands out is the American public's lack of interest in the data that strongly suggests that this was a "false-flag" operation. Many still cling to emotions such as: 1) indifference - the sense that, "That was in the past, and I can't be bothered with it," and 2) aggression and defensiveness, which emanates from the idea that we were attacked by "outsiders." There is a clear absence of discernment re- the massive domestic and world-wide implications of this event. To date no one in our government has been prosecuted. If 9/11 was in fact a false flag, and the public remains in the dark, what message does this send re- our government using such tactics again? (See Fromthewilderness.com, The New Pearl Harbor Revisited by David Ray Griffin, and 9/11truth.org.)

It is widely accepted that we have used this approach to initiate wars in the past; e.g., the Gulf of Tonkin, the Spanish-American War and Operation Northwoods (proposed). In regards to these wars the population simply bought what the government was selling and remained disinterested in questioning further.

**

Beyond this, we see the same trends the concerning increasing revelations regarding extra-terrestrial visitations. Despite the enormous implications of these probable facts, we hold to our naivete re-our own and other countries' penchant for false-flag operations as the raison d'être to initiate wars. Our lack of interest and knowledge may in fact be setting up the human population for a near-future false-flag operation utilizing human-made extraterrestrial craft.

The goal of such a scenario would be "forcing" the need for the establishment of a world dictatorship to fight off our putative off-planet enemies. Until his death, Werner von Braun (a luminary in the realm of rocketry) maintained that these plans are all lies, and are a manifestation of the MIC's need for enemies. ("Cosmic Hoax" by Steven Greer -Youtube; Paul Hellyer - Youtube; siriusdisclosure.com; paradigmresearchgroup.org.)

Then there are expanding questions as to whether the coronavirus and the vaccines - purported to save our lives - are themselves bioweapons, focused on preparing us for further depopulation strategies and anti-democratic coercion, in a war against human freedom - moving us toward a "global reset." (Globalresearch.ca and Dr. Vernon Coleman, click here.)

Edward Snowden masterfully demonstrated that we now live in a surveillance state that dwarfs the one in Orwell's fictional 1984.

The fact that some 70 million people still support the Mafia don-like-wannabe Donald Trump, an authoritarian who has clearly demonstrated major fascistic trends, remains a serious conundrum.

The Need for Critical Thinking

It seems fair to say that the public is not particularly interested in the above issues, even though our present and future are at stake.

In many of the developing countries, the issues are more nitty-gritty: having enough food and water, decent shelter and clothing, having access to appropriate medicine, medical expertise, and basic employment.

We, in the "developed" countries, should be immensely grateful that we even have the luxury to contemplate the quality of our thought process. Yet, as we are preoccupied with the pandemic, employment, and childcare, as well as the instability of our politics and the world at large, we, too, are distracted, tired, and currently have limited attention to give to larger issues.

Subconsciously, no doubt things like rampant racism, global warming, and the growing gap between the rich and the poor exist in the back of some of our minds. Some react to the accelerating rate of change and instability by embracing fundamentalism with its black and white answers.

Understandably, many of us tune out in the face of a world and domestic situation that feels so intractable and complex. The "You can't fight city hall" meme works its magic, allowing us to function and sleep at night.

Yet, our denial does not prevent us from remaining the pawns of large trends that will severely affect the world and, in turn, ourselves and our families. Our denial only increases the probability that these trends will strengthen.

There will always be people who choose not to care or think about larger issues. And for many of us, when things are relatively copasetic, it is easy to become complacent and indifferent, going along and getting along. The question is - as a population - where will this lead us?

We know where these thought patterns led the Germans pre- and during WW2.

The games being played this time have to do with world hegemony. Can we allow ourselves to simply drift along, watching the news and other forms of entertainment, while limiting our concerns to our own immediate circle?

What is critical thinking?

Critical thinking is "thinking about thinking."

We have been named Homo Sapiens sapiens - "the human who is doubly wise." This refers to our capacity to "step back" and observe our inner processes of perceiving the world. Too often, this is a muscle we ignore or simply don't choose to utilize.

Critical thinking involves an objective, unbiased, open critique.

A critical thinker is an active questioner of ideas while maintaining a deep and wide perspective, instead of being a passive recipient of answers developed by someone else.

Critical thinking can discern logical fallacies and cognitive biases. It has been defined as: "the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, self-regulation, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action." Its aim is mental clarity and effective problem-solving. This can become a habit, our baseline.

To become better critical thinkers, we can ask simple questions, challenge common assumptions, become aware of our biases, and carefully evaluate sources of information, while seeing through sources that are projecting propaganda or dogma.

Attitudes that foster critical thinking:

--- Dedication to reality.

--- A broad, deep comprehensive knowledge base.

--- Non-attachment to any given knowledge base, and an absence of rigidity.

--- An openness to looking at a problem from multiple points of view.

--- An understanding of the maps of reality we have unthinkingly absorbed from parents, teachers, peers and media.

--- Healthy skepticism.

--- The art of thinking for oneself.

--- The willingness to allow emotions and a bodily "felt sense" into our decisions.

--- The need to clearly define terms.

--- Transcendence of conformity and fear of not following the crowd. The ability to recognize the dangers of group-think.

--- The willingness to tolerate discomfort, if this is what emerges when we face a data that contradicts conventional, consensual answers.

--- Courage and commitment to facing and acting on what we perceive to be true, even it means bucking the crowd. This is not as easy as it sounds.

--- Lack of ego-investment in conclusions and letting go of the need to be "right".

--- Letting go of the need for control.

**

Obstacles to critical thinking

--- Unexamined assumptions and slanted emotionally based, egocentric thought.

--- The habit of closed-mindedness and fear of expanding one's point of view. Attachment to narrow perspectives and unquestioned ideologies.

--- Authoritarianism: following a charismatic leader, ideology or dogma. This includes the insistence on "being right and the willingness to admit when we are wrong."

--- Passivity and mental laziness: unwillingness to check the reliability of our sources of information to determine their merit. Failing to discern research bias. Not bothering to obtain confirmation from multiple sources. Feeling it is "too much work" to scrutinize evidence and dissect opposing arguments.

--- Absence of an adequate fund of knowledge about the world.

--- Inability to use a variety of types of thinking: symbolic, intuitive, archetypal, metaphoric.

--- The craving for stability and fear of "rocking the boat" re- one's own life.

--- Overconfidence.

--- Immersion in and attachment to fantasies.

---- Habitual disregard for the truth.

--- Lack of awareness re- our emotions. This can include unconscious, seething anger.

--- Cynicism, indifference and the lack of a sense of the human community. Ego- and socio-centrism.

--- Lack of self-knowledge. Too often our motivations, emotions and thought patterns remain unconscious. Some of these emotionally fueled patterns include prejudice, preconceptions and unexamined assumptions., and non-objective thinking.

----An acceptance of government and business prevarication as "just the way things are." Further thought stops there.

--- Being busy with work, raising a family and multiple distractions via television, the internet, etc. "I have no time to think about such things."

--- Reductionistic thinking, complete with thought-stopping memes.

--- Denial, rationalization, projection, displacement and other psychological defense mechanisms.

Where this leaves us

Without the skill of critical thinking, it is all too easy for us to function like sheep, where a herd-like instinct holds sway.

Much comes down to fear, as well as the educational experience we have endured. Schooling rewarded us for memorizing, rather than for the kind of thinking that challenges assumptions (especially the teacher's). This leads to a lack of curiosity and a robotic approach to learning. We are also inculcated with the need to "follow orders." (The "just following orders" defense, was made famous in the post-WWII Nazi Nuremberg trials, and featured heavily in Eichmann's court hearings).

Regarding fear, we often do not want to admit having been fooled or misled. We commonly have difficulty facing the truth - if this entails thinking thoughts or feeling emotions that make us uncomfortable or frightened. We may have a desire for control, which will be upended by facts that lead us into uncertainty. We may choose to focus on the past, as if the future will be a replication, rather than an unpredictable endeavor.

So it is that we elected Donald Trump to the highest office in the land, despite his history of sexual assault, not paying those who work for him, threats to jail his opponent and his racist, xenophobic, misogynistic campaign for the White House. It is evident (for those who have eyes to see that he was corrupt, dangerous (playing with the notion of using nuclear weapons) and cruel (caging children of immigrants who had crossed the border, likely scarring them for life). His actions and interminable blatant lies meant that the country was in an abusive relationship with its supposed leader. Besides his constant gaslighting of the public, he demonstrated an overabundance of hostility - a characteristic of a malignant narcissist.

Trump:

If [Hillary Clinton] gets to pick - if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is. I don't know.

**

You have to dominate. If you don't dominate, you're wasting your time. They're going to run over you. You're going to look like a bunch of jerks. You have to dominate, and you have to arrest people, and you have to try people, and they have to go to jail for long periods of time.

**

You know what I hate? There's a guy, totally disruptive, throwing punches [false or questionable], we're not allowed to punch back anymore. I love the old days. You know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They'd be carried out on a stretcher, folks. Oh, it's true. ... I'd like to punch him in the face, I tell ya.

Statistics

The New York Times reported that some 71 million people voted for Donald Trump.

Biden won by more than seven million votes and dozens of courts rejected Trump's challenges to the results. Yet, a May 17-19 Reuters national poll found that 53% of Republicans believe that Trump, their party's nominee, is the "the president" now, compared to 3% of Democrats and 25% of all Americans.

An estimated 21 million Americans believe that Joe Biden is an illegitimate president and that former President Donald Trump should be restored to the White House by force.

Meanwhile, a Brookings poll found that Trump's consistent appeals to his base bore rich fruit. His campaign for reelection was supported by 94% of Republicans, up from 92% in 2016; by 84% of white evangelical Protestants, up from 77%; and by 65% of rural voters, up from 59%. At the same time, he held the support of about two-thirds of whites without college degrees, and his support among white women rose from 47 to 53%.

**

America lost much status and the trust of the rest of the world, not only through our policies under Trump, but through our lack of discrimination in electing him in the first place. There are other Trump-like potential candidates waiting in the wings.

And, where does lack of critical thinking lead us?

The recent global survey, conducted by WIN/Gallup International, polled residents in 68 countries on everything from the global economy to politics and living conditions.

According to the poll, 24 percent of the surveyed countries ranked the United States as the greatest threat to world peace today, followed by Pakistan at 8 percent, China at 6 percent and four countries (Afghanistan, Iran, Israel and North Korea) tied at 5 percent.

Conclusion

Psychiatrist John Mack asserted the simple, stark reality that the existence of life on our planet hangs by a thread and that: "Unless we act quickly to take responsibility for our fate, we [all] may well be - like the 'good Germans' of the 1930s and '40s, permitting the final holocaust to be committed in our names."

Clearly, we need to teach children, in both our homes and our schools, the benefits and capacities needed for critical thinking. Workplaces need to reward divergent thinking. And we need to intensify our own self-awareness, as well as call out distorted thinking and conclusions whenever it is possible.

We have been given the evolutionary gift of a pre-frontal cortex capable of self-awareness and complex thought. Will we use it?

It would seem that many at the pinnacle of power think of the population as stupid, gullible, "useless eaters." Whether we accept and live out these designations is up to us.

(Article changed on Sep 25, 2021 at 2:24 PM EDT)

(Article changed on Sep 25, 2021 at 2:29 PM EDT)

(Article changed on Sep 25, 2021 at 10:40 PM EDT)

 

Well Said 3   Inspiring 2   Valuable 2  
Rate It | View Ratings

Blair Gelbond Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

I work as a psychotherapist with an emphasis on transformational learning - a blend of psychoanalytic and transpersonal approaches, and am the author of Self Actualization and Unselfish Love and co-author of Families Helping Families: (more...)
 

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Enzo and our Planetary Marathon

Self-Actualization for the Benefit of the World

Loving Awareness

The Scapegoat

Bodhichitta - Opening the Heart-Mind

The Farther Reaches of Human Nature

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

7 people are discussing this page, with 38 comments


Lance Ciepiela

Become a Fan
Author 14196
Follow Me on Twitter (Member since Apr 4, 2008), 53 fans, 58 articles, 224 quicklinks, 5783 comments, 216 diaries (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

Yes, 'this was a "false-flag" operation' - 'had to be'. Our #NORAD air defense system was 'nowhere in sight' to defend our skies on 9/11 AM, not even at the Pentagon while Cheney was conducting 'live war games' - "these exercises were under Dick Cheney's management" - and 'terror drills', 'if you can imagine that".

Bush put Cheney in charge on 9/11 by Executive Order months in advance, and Cheney put our NORAD air defenses on "stand down" over the target areas at the Pentagon and World Trade Center Towers resulting in the orchestrated 9/11 attacks.

Then World Trade Center 7 'explodes' at 5:20 PM. #FederalCrimes. 9/11 Treason - MEMO - to Congress.

Submitted on Saturday, Sep 25, 2021 at 1:15:05 PM

  Recommend  (2+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Lance Ciepiela:   New Content

Lance,

Thank you for your response. I believe that:

1) we need to keep drilling down and spreading the word re- 9/11 (as you do), given its massive implications; and

2) expand our vision to include the whole "false flag" matter.

As I see it, 9/11 was just the beginning of the current strategy. (See "Cosmic Hoax" on Youtube). Narrowing our focus to 9/11 as a heinous crime ((important as it is) distracts us from a larger frame of reference that is key to our freedom and survival.

Submitted on Saturday, Sep 25, 2021 at 1:50:39 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

When it comes to the macro-level, citizens tend to feel paralyzed, crushed, and be unconsciously in denial to avoid the discomfort of cognitive dissonance. What would happen if we all woke up to the fact that we are recipients of massive deception from governments that is putting our species and planet in danger and moving us toward dictatorship?

Paul Levy says it this way:

"We have become blind. This blindness is fourfold: we don't realize we are blind (we are blind to our blindness); we are blind to our shadow and our complicity in the darkness that is operating in the world; we are blind to the light of our true nature; and we are blind to recognizing that what is playing out in our world encodes a hidden revelation that can wake us up."

Submitted on Saturday, Sep 25, 2021 at 1:40:25 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

I recall a conversation I once had with Ram Dass at his father's house. He said: "If we can't have truth, it's not worth playing." That exchange has stayed with me.

And I wonder...what will become of us if we don't demand truth from ourselves, and the powers-that-be?

Submitted on Saturday, Sep 25, 2021 at 10:25:56 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

We can say that one dimension of "critical thinking is "complex thinking." Edgar Morin has illustrated the meaning of this phrase. John Ringland writes:

"Lived experience, in this view, simply cannot satisfactorily be reduced to the perspective of one discipline. Morin's approach has always been both planetary and personal.

"Morin's work does not come from an attempt to escape life for an ivory tower, or to control it through intricate theoretical frameworks and maps, but from an effort to immerse himself in it more deeply, and to provide the sciences with tools to account more adequately for the lived complexity of life, and indeed to assist the reader in that process of immersion.

"Morin characterizes his later work on Complex Thought as an attempt to develop a method that does not "mutilate," that does not fragment and abstract, that does not do violence to life, that is not unidimensional, anemic, antiseptic, homogenized"

"Exploring such phenomena as self-deception, cognitive dissonance, groupthink, and authoritarian thinking and behavior in himself and in "the party," we find another theme that was to run through all of Morin's future work.

"In his Seven Complex Lessons in Education for the Future, a document he wrote at the request of UNESCO, the first lesson is about self-deception and combating 'error and illusion.' How is it that we let ourselves literally become possessed by ideas, by the party, by our 'faith,' by our 'cause,' even by what we believe to be 'science?'

"While we normally assume that we have ideas, it became clear to Morin that ideas can also have us literally possess us. Human beings can literally be possessed by ideologies and belief systems, whether on the Left or the Right, whether in science or religion.

"Henceforth, Morin's effort would be to develop a form of thinking and of being in the world that is always self-reflective and self-critical, always open and creative, always eager to challenge the fundamental assumptions underlying a system of thought, and always alert for the ways in which, covertly or overtly, we create inviolate centers that cannot be questioned or challenged.

"Knowledge always requires the knowledge of knowledge, the ongoing investigation and interrogation of how we construct knowledge."

Submitted on Sunday, Sep 26, 2021 at 3:27:18 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

As Morin, an advocate for "complex thinking" points out, whenever oversimplification occurs, a vicious cycle is set in motion, for:

"the more problems become multidimensional, the less chance there is to grasp their multidimensionality. Incapable of seeing the planetary context in all its complexity, blind intelligence fosters unconsciousness and irresponsibility. It has become the bearer of death."

Submitted on Sunday, Sep 26, 2021 at 9:13:11 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Irene Fowler

Become a Fan
Author 514273
Follow Me on Twitter (Member since Sep 24, 2019), 7 fans, 29 articles, 344 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linked In Page Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Blair Gelbond:   New Content


"Yet, our denial does not prevent us from remaining the pawns of large trends that will severely affect the world and, in turn, ourselves and our families. Our denial only increases the probability that these trends will strengthen."

The frightening thing is that the capacity for self-deception, seems boundless. Despite the currency of the proverb; " fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me," Trump and his goons continue to speak and act from the same morally depraved, sick playbook; chapter and verse.

A case in point, is the recently announced results of the Arizona 'fraudit," which confirmed the election win of Biden, by an even greater margin. However, Trumpsters continue to believe the Big Lie. At this stage, we have to agree that not only is evil mass- manipulation going on, but that something is irretrievably broken in the psyche's of those that are being led, trance-like, down this "Primrose Path" to doom.

This will not end well for the world.


Submitted on Monday, Sep 27, 2021 at 6:28:03 AM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndent

Irene Fowler

Become a Fan
Author 514273
Follow Me on Twitter (Member since Sep 24, 2019), 7 fans, 29 articles, 344 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linked In Page Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Irene Fowler:   New Content

BYW, primates are social creatures and co-exist successfully in groups, which is more than I can say for our species.

Submitted on Monday, Sep 27, 2021 at 10:47:38 AM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndentIndent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Irene Fowler:   New Content

Irene,

No doubt primates have some sort of thought-process. Out intellect has been both a gift and a curse, getting us in deep trouble.

Will we destroy ourselves, leaving primates and dolphins as the most advanced creatures on the planet?

In the brilliant novel, Ishmael, by Daniel Quinn, there is a poster which reads:

"With man gone,

will there be hope for gorilla?"

Submitted on Monday, Sep 27, 2021 at 11:33:36 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Irene Fowler:   New Content

Thank you, Irene.

The question in my mind is - what will dissipate self-deception? Might large-scale catastrophe (God forbid) wake people up?

I believe fear and anxiety are bottom-line precursors to the conditions of denial, rationalization, and lying to oneself. .

Submitted on Monday, Sep 27, 2021 at 11:18:06 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Philip Pease

Become a Fan
Author 10841
Follow Me on Twitter
(Member since Feb 8, 2008), 6 fans, 1240 comments, 1 diaries (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

How can we know what is true or false? The Constitution wants us to trust a "free press" to investigate and inform us as to what is true and what is false. Does the "free press" live up to the expectations of our founding fathers to give us the truth?

In my younger days there was an underground press that provided an alternate view to the main stream media. Today there is the internet that gives everyone the means to express their version of what is true or false.

Trump, in being a presidential candidate and then after being elected, says do not trust the main stream media but trust me. The main stream media claims they "fact check" what Trump and other politicians say; and tell their readers that Trump lies. They present numbers that they claim are factual; but Trump says the main stream media are the liars; that there is a "deep state" that is out to get him. Trump says do not trust the institutions that our founding fathers said we should trust to tell us when politicians are lying and to give us the truth.

I suggest that we used to rely on trusting certain sources to provide us with the truth. What happens to society when that trust is lost? Insurrection? Violence/civil war? Chaos/confusion? Are we headed toward a dystopian society where (in an attempt to bring order out of chaos) we create a "ministry of truth" and a "ministry of order" that makes freedom of speech a crime to be dealt with harshly?

Critical thinking? If you don't trust your sources to present facts vs falsehoods you have no basis to assume what you think is true is so; and you are stuck with believing it is so. Perhaps for a small number of intellectuals they can use critical thinking skills to weed out sources of error to arrive at more likely conjectures; but for the general population beliefs are what is so.

Submitted on Monday, Sep 27, 2021 at 11:53:44 AM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

Thank you for this powerful comment, Philip.

It seems clear that the masses are hypnotized.

From Paul Levy in the rather amazing book - Radical Reconciliation:

"We need to understand the self-created hypnotic trance in which our species is currently immersed, as we rush as fast as we can toward ritual suicide on a global scale. We are enacting a monomaniacal persistence in error, revealing an inability or unwillingness to learn from our mistakes.

"What Jung called the 'shadow' element of our psyche is overspreading the world. Healing begins with shining a light on this darkness through a psychological and spiritual awareness."

As for myself - to discern truth I make generous use of my intuition, spiritual heart, and gut-feeling (2nd brain). I also use my intellect in terms of having a map of what is going on and what agendas are in play. Accessing multiple sources helps.

I think that being aware and truthful with oneself is a way of detecting authenticity in others. Finally, being familiar with psychological defense mechanisms, such as denial, rationalization, projection, etc. can help us to sort the wheat from the chaff.

As far as the American people go, I'd say we're 'up sh*t creek without a paddle.' It may take a cataclysm to wake us up"if we are *lucky*. 1984 and Brave New World were certainly prescient.

Submitted on Tuesday, Sep 28, 2021 at 11:40:19 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Derryl Hermanutz

Become a Fan
Author 64335
(Member since Apr 27, 2011), 50 fans, 26 articles, 1 quicklinks, 1740 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

I agree Philip. Advice and solutions that might work for the 10% of the population who are intellectually gifted are like advice and solutions for the 10% of the population who are wealthy or rich. The solutions are simply unavailable - out of reach - to the vast majority of the people.

Of the 10% who are intellectuals, how many have been bought and paid for to promote 'facts' and 'truths' that serve the agendas of their paymasters? Being intelligent does not mean knowing or telling the truth. You have to begin by valuing truth, by wanting to know what is really going on in this world, then you have to embark on a lifelong research project to weed out the bits of truth from the mountain of lies and propaganda and misconceptions and disinformation.

Most people have neither the desire nor the ability to do that. We live in a teacher-student, shepherd-sheep society where the few who are able to understand are supposed to be responsible for the education and government of the many who do not. If the shepherds are wolves and the teachers work for the wolves, there is little chance for the students and sheep to learn the truth.

Submitted on Wednesday, Sep 29, 2021 at 8:53:43 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Derryl Hermanutz:   New Content

I thank you for your comment to Philip.

A few things:

I was in error in recommending the book to him.

The title is actually Radical Regeneration. and offers this scenario: due to the momentum of our negativity, it will likely require major catastrophe - if we are very fortunate - to awaken us out of our slumber... To awaken our compassionate hearts and hard earned wisdom after witnessing, hearing of, and living large-scale death and misery. We certainly seem to be heading for such a collapse.

A more or less new human species may emerge.

Submitted on Wednesday, Sep 29, 2021 at 11:29:55 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndent

Philip Pease

Become a Fan
Author 10841
Follow Me on Twitter
(Member since Feb 8, 2008), 6 fans, 1240 comments, 1 diaries (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Derryl Hermanutz:   New Content

After I retired I had lots of time to engage with others on social media sites as well as reading articles about topics that interests me. I did spend a good deal of my time and effort trying to discern truth of claims made by others on those social media sites to the point of being disturbed by what I considered to be misinformation.

I learned that most of the misinformation can be traced back to organizations that deliberately spread their lies in order to further their agenda (usually greed but sometimes to promote hate and division in order to gain greater power). I think they have adopted the idea that the ends justify the means. My effort to speak truth to their lies will not change their actions because achieving their end goal is more important (to them) than having them exposed as a liar who are attempting to deceive the public. In short, their "values" and my values are so different that there is no common ground on which we can meet. The desire for money and power is turning America into a dystopian society with no common ground for moving forward. There does not appear to be a set of common values on which we agree.

I went through a period of introspection to uncover what is important to me, my values and examined my life to identify what I want to change. As a result, I choose to smile more and frown less. I choose to live in the now with greater awareness and less in the past or hoped for future. I have accepted that I cannot change others; but I do still speak out because I care about America and its people, our children and their children.

My critical thinking was to search myself to identify what I value and to learn how to live those values no matter what life brings. Know oneself and be true to oneself.

Submitted on Thursday, Sep 30, 2021 at 12:15:54 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndentIndent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

The problem with self-deception today is that it not only affects the individual; it affects entire populations. It appears that the movers and shakers at the top of the pyramid, are invested in people not seeing the truth re- what they are up to.

Interestingly, besides any outer actions we can take to remedy the situation, there are are inner remedies as well. Vipassana mediation (translated from Pali as, "seeing things as they are") provides powerful tools for gaining more clarity. Jack Kornfield, Tara Brach, and Christopher Titmus are skilled teachers of this form of "seeing clearly."

Submitted on Friday, Oct 1, 2021 at 12:25:28 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content
There is a state of mind beyond critical thinking - these days known as "mindfulness."

Mindfulness meditation teacher, Joseph Goldstein describes it as:

"the quality and power of mind that is aware of what is happening, without judgement and without interference."

The Buddha referred to this way of being as "the path to enlightenment. Thich Naht Hanh said: "Living mindfully and with concentration, we see a deeper reality and are able to witness impermanence without fear, anger, or despair."

Mindfulness facilitates us living with a greater sense of awareness and connection to the people and world around us. It can be translated as "seeing things as they are.

Here, thinking is secondary. The primary muscle we are exercising is awareness.

Submitted on Saturday, Oct 2, 2021 at 11:12:26 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

Instructions for mindfulness meditation - from thelionsroar.com

(Mindfulness is simply paying attention in a focused way)

To achieve peace of mind, we must make sure our body is at peace. So it's important to choose a position that will be comfortable for a long period of time.

The Breath During Meditation

6. After sitting down, what should you do?
Close your eyes. Then place your attention at the belly, at the abdomen. Breathe normallynot forcing your breathingneither slowing it down nor hastening it. Just a natural breath.

7. What will you become aware of as you breathe in and breathe out?
You will become aware of certain sensations as you breathe in and the abdomen rises, and as you breathe out and the abdomen falls.

Developing Attention

8. How should you sharpen your aim?
Sharpen your aim by making sure that the mind is attentive to the entirety of each process. Be aware from the very beginning of all sensations involved in the rising. Maintain a steady attention through the middle and the end of the rising. Then be aware of the sensations of the falling movement of the abdomen from the beginning, through the middle, and to the very end of the falling.

Although we describe the rising and falling as having a beginning, middle and end, this is only in order to show that your awareness should be continuous and thorough. We don't intend you to break these processes into three segments. You should try to be aware of each of these movements from beginning to end as one complete process, as a whole. Do not peer at the sensations with an over-focused mind, specifically looking to discover how the abdominal movement begins or ends.

9. Why is it important in this meditation to have both effort and precise aim?
It is very important to have both effort and precise aim so that the mind meets the sensation directly and powerfully.(con't)

Submitted on Tuesday, Oct 5, 2021 at 10:44:48 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

10. What is one way to aid precision and accuracy?
One helpful aid to precision and accuracy is to make a soft, mental note of the object of awareness, naming the sensation by saying the word gently and silently in the mind, like "rising, rising . . .," and "falling, falling. . ."

11. When the mind wanders off, what should you do?
Watch the mind! Be aware that you are thinking.

12. How can you clarify your awareness of thinking?
Note the thought silently with the verbal label "thinking," and come back to the rising and falling.

13. Is it possible to remain perfectly focused on the rising and falling of the abdomen all the time?
Despite making an effort to do so, no one can remain perfectly focused on the rising and falling of the abdomen forever. Other objects inevitably arise and become predominant. Thus, the sphere of meditation encompasses all of our experiences: sights, sounds, smells, tastes, sensations in the body, and mental objects such as visions in the imagination or emotions. When any of these objects arises you should focus direct awareness on it, and silently use a gentle verbal label.

During Practice

14. If another object impinges on the awareness and draws it away from the rising and falling, what should you do?
During sitting meditation, if another object impinges strongly on the awareness so as to draw it away from the rising and falling of the abdomen, this object must be clearly noted. For example, if a loud sound arises during your meditation, consciously direct your attention toward that sound as soon as it arises. Be aware of the sound as a direct experience, and also identify it succinctly with the soft, internal, verbal label "hearing, hearing." When the sound fades and is no longer predominant, come back to the rising and falling. This is the basic principle to follow in sitting meditation.

(con't)

Submitted on Tuesday, Oct 5, 2021 at 10:49:22 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

During Practice

15. What is the best way to make the verbal label?
There is no need for complex language. One simple word is best. For the eye, ear and tongue doors we simply say, "Seeing, seeing"," or, "hearing, hearing"" or, "tasting, tasting . . . ."

16. What are some ways to note sensations in the body?
For sensations in the body we may choose a slightly more descriptive term like "warmth," "pressure," "hardness" or "motion."

17. How should you note mental objects?
Mental objects seem to present a bewildering diversity, but actually they fall into just a few clear categories, such as "thinking," "imagining," "remembering," "planning" and "visualizing."

18. What is the purpose of labeling?
In using the labeling technique, your goal is not to gain verbal skills. Labeling helps us to perceive clearly the actual qualities of our experience, without getting immersed in the content. It develops mental power and focus.

19. What kind of awareness do we seek in meditation, and why?
We seek a deep, clear, precise awareness of the mind and body. This direct awareness shows us the truth about our lives, the actual nature of mental and physical processes.

Ending Your Meditation

20. After one hour of sitting, does our meditation come to an end?

Meditation need not come to an end after an hour of sitting. It can be carried out continuously through the day.

Submitted on Tuesday, Oct 5, 2021 at 10:51:35 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Philip Pease

Become a Fan
Author 10841
Follow Me on Twitter
(Member since Feb 8, 2008), 6 fans, 1240 comments, 1 diaries (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

If you do a search on the definition of Meditation you will find there isn't any clear/concise definition. So, after years of practicing meditation I offer this: Meditation is the practice of just being aware. There are two types of practice. One is to choose something specific to focus on, to be aware of. The other is to just allow whatever catches your attention choose for you. The former develops concentration, the ability to focus your awareness on that which you choose (such as being aware of your breath flowing in, flowing out). The latter develops contemplation (such as watching your thoughts as they arise one after another). In both types of practice the same method is employed; to just be aware. In practicing focus meditation and you become aware that you have lost focus return your awareness to the object of your focus. Gradually you will develop your ability to maintain focus on whatever you choose to focus on. In practicing contemplation meditation you uncover your inner self.

Submitted on Wednesday, Oct 6, 2021 at 10:55:00 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

Thanks, Philip.

This is my understanding as well.

Submitted on Wednesday, Oct 6, 2021 at 11:51:41 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

Philip,

A glimpse of work in progress:

Edgar Morin has clearly articulated that one of the most crucial dilemmas facing our world today can be described as "meta-problem" - a problem which is not limited to "real-world" issues such as world hunger or poverty, but which is revealed in the way we think about and formulate solutions to these external problems.

He takes us to task for a sort of "good guy/bad guy" cartoon caricature of events and processes which in reality are multidimensional - involving a multitude of forces and recursive loops.

Yet, as Morin points out, whenever this kind of oversimplification occurs, another vicious cycle is set in motion, for, "the more problems become multidimensional, the less chance there is to grasp their multidimensionality. Incapable of seeing the planetary context in all its complexity, blind intelligence fosters unconsciousness and irresponsibility. It has become the bearer of death."

Submitted on Thursday, Oct 7, 2021 at 11:26:47 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
IndentIndent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Blair Gelbond:   New Content

We have been thoroughly conditioned to look to external world for the answers to our problems and as a way of solving our problems. Likewise, we have been taught to forgo the kind of introspection that enables us to observe our very own thought processes, which on a global basis have set our problematic situations in motion in the first place.

Edgar Morin, age 100, is one of the leading systems theorists alive today. He has originated and popularized the term "complex thinking," and his writing exemplifies this fresh approach to thought. Complex thinking can be thought of as a "kissing cousin" to critical thinking.

He argues that our very approach to solving problems is fatally flawed. Morin presents an alternative to the traditional assumptions and methods of inquiry in our time.

Morin's method outlines a way of approaching problem-solving that does not reduce or separate, and does justice to the complexity of life and experience. In his sociopolitical works, such as his prescient studies on the USSR and totalitarianism, on the nature and concept of Europe, and his "manifesto for the 21st century," Homeland Earth, Morin applied this method to the global crisis which he calls this "planetary Iron Age."

Complex thought involves a meta-re-organization of knowledge that goes against the grain of our accepted habits of mind which emphasize analysis, reductionism, either/or thinking, and the quantitative over the qualitative.

Complex thought brings in the knower, circularity, systems, uncertainty, and possibility, all of which are not part of the education of the average western student; indeed, they are all-to-often the very things they have been discouraged from exploring.

Submitted on Thursday, Oct 7, 2021 at 11:29:04 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Philip Pease

Become a Fan
Author 10841
Follow Me on Twitter
(Member since Feb 8, 2008), 6 fans, 1240 comments, 1 diaries (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

I agree with this. One example is where people, that are tasked with solving social problems, fail to consider/account for human nature. Let's take the problem of violence in society and how governments respond. First, government's primarily think about passing laws and allocating money to deal with the problem. An example is they pass a "stop and frisk" law and give the police money to hire more officers to carry out that law in high crime rate areas around the city. So they put police out on the streets stoping mostly young black men not wearing a suit and tie. These new police hires perceive that the person they are stopping and frisking are likely to be armed and may use their weapon against them. That these police officers will have this mind-set is human nature. The result is these officers will act agressively from the start to protect themselves in this "dangerous" situation. They will then "see him reaching for a weapon" when he may be reaching for his wallet or phone; and then react according to what they believe is happening (this is human nature). From the civilian side the police actions are perceived as violent/abusive/discriminatory/opressive and that an out of control police force is perceived as a problem that requires government to act to deal with this social/political problem. This is also human nature. I should not be treated like this by the police; it makes me mad as hell and I am not going to accept such treatment is human nature. There are numerous ways to try to reduce violence; why the law makers chose stop and frisk? It is simple and direct, take guns away from those who look like they might be likely to comit a violent act. Simple thinking that directly solves the gun violence problem; but fails because their thinking was too simplistic in that it failed to consider human nature. One example that illustrated the point that we tend to think to simplistically and that might give poor results.

Submitted on Friday, Oct 8, 2021 at 11:25:04 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

Hi Philp,

Thank you for your thoughts. I agree with most of what you wrote.

Where I would disagree is with your use of the term 'human nature.' Research indicates that 5-7000 years ago patriarchy swept the globe leading to "man over nature, men over women and men over other men."

I myself would use the term "our social character today." Human nature is malleable and in this sense different from animals, whose instincts are more or less fixed.

There are a plethora of reasons for police attitudes toward Black people, and complex thinking would attempt to discern the complex dimensions of police, citizen and government behavior. As Morin says - problems are spatially and temporally interdependent with many other issues. And the more we utilize simplistic thinking re- multi-dimensional problems, the less capable we are of beginning to actually solve them.

As I've been saying, it may well require a massive cataclysm to get people to stop and re-think their thinking. (Radical Regeneration - Baker and Harvey- Choosing Earth - Duane Elgin).

Submitted on Friday, Oct 8, 2021 at 2:22:25 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

Hi Philp,

Thank you for your thoughts. I agree with most of what you wrote.

Where I would disagree is with your use of the term 'human nature.' Research indicates that 5-7000 years ago patriarchy swept the globe leading to "man over nature, men over women and men over other men."

I myself would use the term "our social character today." Human nature is malleable and in this sense different from animals, whose instincts are more or less fixed.

There are a plethora of reasons for police attitudes toward Black people, and complex thinking would attempt to discern the complex dimensions of police, citizen and government behavior. As Morin says - problems are spatially and temporally interdependent with many other issues. And the more we utilize simplistic thinking re- multi-dimensional problems, the less capable we are of beginning to actually solve them.

As I've been saying, it may well require a massive cataclysm to get people to stop and re-think their thinking. (Radical Regeneration - Baker and Harvey- Choosing Earth - Duane Elgin).

Submitted on Friday, Oct 8, 2021 at 2:24:20 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Philip Pease:   New Content

Hi Philp,

Thank you for your thoughts. I agree with most of what you wrote.

Where I would disagree is with your use of the term 'human nature.' Research indicates that 5-7000 years ago patriarchy swept the globe leading to "man over nature, men over women and men over other men."

I myself would use the term "our social character today." Human nature is malleable and in this sense different from animals, whose instincts are more or less fixed.

There are a plethora of reasons for police attitudes toward Black people, and complex thinking would attempt to discern the complex dimensions of police, citizen and government behavior. As Morin says - problems are spatially and temporally interdependent with many other issues. And the more we utilize simplistic thinking re- multi-dimensional problems, the less capable we are of beginning to actually solve them.

As I've been saying, it may well require a massive cataclysm to get people to stop and re-think their thinking. (Radical Regeneration - Baker and Harvey- Choosing Earth - Duane Elgin).

Submitted on Friday, Oct 8, 2021 at 2:34:26 PM

  Recommend  (1+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

The need for clear, complex (as opposed to simplistic) thought - and intuitive insight - is clear, followed by skillful action. But first it is essential that we see the full-scope of our predicament.

From Paul Levy:

"We are living through a world-transforming evolutionary crisis - a planetary rite of passage - in which modern industrial and technocratic civilization is collapsing upon itself. We are truly at a choice-point of human evolution. We can deny the reality of what is happening - and in a self-generated feedback loop, deny that we are in denial - or snap out of our denial and open our eyes and look at the collective nightmare that we are unwittingly co-creating."

--- Radical Regeneration - Baker and Harvey

Submitted on Saturday, Oct 9, 2021 at 2:44:51 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Robert Adler

Become a Fan
Author 88362
(Member since Jun 11, 2013), 2 fans, 25 articles, 281 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linked In Page Instagram Page

  New Content

Blair, At your suggestion, I just read the article and agree with almost everything in it. I certainly agree that 9/11 was seized upon by Bush and his cronies, with the eager help of Congress, to push us into 20 years of fruitless war and to justify the current surveillance state. As to whether it was a false flag operation, I'm agnostic. Your list of aids and obstacles to critical thinking is excellent.

Submitted on Saturday, Oct 9, 2021 at 8:01:40 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Robert Adler:   New Content

Thank you Robert, for the serious way you related to what I wrote.

If you are interested re- 9/11, I can recommend Fromthewilderness.com and also Michael Ruppert's book, Crossing the Rubicon and David Ray Griffin's book, The New Pearl Harbor Revisited. Ruppert was a former detective and Griffin was a professor emeritus; both books and the website go into much specific detail re- this event. 9/11 appears to be "one of the dots."

To take this to another level (another one of the dots) I would invite you to see "Cosmic Hoax" by Steven Greer on Youtube. False flag operations have been used for many years to drum up support for countries to go to war.

Thank you for your praise of the critical thinking piece. As I say in the next article on OEN- "Are We Learning Disabled?" - 'complex thinking' is very closely related to 'critical thinking.'

Submitted on Saturday, Oct 9, 2021 at 8:31:58 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

One aspect of critical thinking that has not been taken into account is an experiential understanding of our unconscious motives. While this may sound like a contradiction, the breakthroughs of Freud, Jung, and Assagioli show that this is quite possible.

Immersed in our predicament - unconsciousness - while we continue to function in a compensatory way on the surface of this vast inner universe, we create endless suffering for other humans, our animal brethren, and plants, without whom we cannot survive.

Jung suggested that, rather than curse the darkness, we light a candle that illumines our inner world.

Submitted on Thursday, Oct 14, 2021 at 12:44:58 AM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Blair Gelbond:   New Content

There does appear to be a "herd instinct" among humans. Critical thinking can help is avoid the fate of being "sheep."

Submitted on Thursday, Oct 14, 2021 at 10:15:25 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

On today's OPED or can be found online:

How Far Down the Road Towards Fascism Has America Gone?

Thom Hartmann

While there's apparently "nothing to see here" when it comes to conservative media outlets and even, in many ways, mainstream media, it's worth asking the question: "How far down the road toward authoritarian oligarchy, or even outright fascism, have we gone?"


Submitted on Thursday, Oct 14, 2021 at 10:31:54 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

The danger inherent in a lack of critical thinking is that people can be "stampeded" or simply be shaped by the power of conformity to follow the leader. With today's sophisticated methods of persuasion - including television and the internet we can easily fail to think deeply and discern carefully.

One example has to do with the Covid vaccine. There is disturbing material readily available suggesting that what we are told is simply not true. Yet, who is researching this? And who is questioning the rush to embrace the "party line?" Or ostracize those who question it? Fear will do that. (See Globalresearch.ca).

Covid and the vaccine may be early moves in a depopulation and anti-democratic campaign. Similarly - the secret chemtrails and the HAARP program in Alaska. But who is questioning these? Where are the articles on Oped News?

It is essential to - as an old bumper sticker used to proclaim -"question authority." Each of our futures and the futures of our children lies in the balance.

Submitted on Saturday, Oct 16, 2021 at 1:37:37 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

A very real danger for our species is the ease in which we can thoughtlessly be "stampeded." Our tendencies toward conformity may do us in.

Examples are our lack of curiosity re- 9/11; (Fromthewildrness.com; 9/11truth.org)

Our lack of adequately researching the Covid virus and vaccines, despite the documented material suggesting that these may be the early steps in a de-population strategy - and the potential long- and short-term destructiveness of vaccines. (Globalresearch.ca)

The growing evidence that we have shot down and then re-engineered extraterrestrial crafts and plan to use these on a false-flag attack on Earth, "necessitating" global authoritarian rule. ("Cosmic Hoax," Youtube; Siriusdisclosure.com)

It is easy to "pooh-pooh" these situations. Yet, doing so leaves us in the position of being blind victims.

Submitted on Sunday, Oct 17, 2021 at 5:10:05 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?

Meryl Ann Butler

Become a Fan Follow Me on Twitter (Member since Jun 5, 2006), 82 fans, 743 articles, 2144 quicklinks, 6558 comments, 8 diaries (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

  New Content

Critical thinking skills are essential yet sadly not universal. I have often thought that logic and critical thinking skills should be taught in elementary school (or maybe start in Pre-K!) ...having live in Louisiana for a decade, I saw what sub-par education does to students...it leaves them with no way to figure things out on their own, and then they grow up to live from the reptilian brain, reacting from fear, rather than initiating positive steps from educated analysis.

Submitted on Tuesday, Oct 19, 2021 at 9:19:12 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?
Indent

Blair Gelbond

Become a Fan
Author 71296
(Member since Sep 8, 2011), 7 fans, 63 articles, 1 quicklinks, 2634 comments (How many times has this commenter been recommended?)
Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Reply to Meryl Ann Butler:   New Content

Thank you, and right on, Meryl Ann. Such people are easily led down the primrose path. They can become the backbone of authoritarian power....and destruction.

Submitted on Tuesday, Oct 19, 2021 at 9:35:55 PM

  Recommend  (0+)
Flag This
Share Comment More Sharing          
Commenter Blocking?