Funstuff and Inspiration > Enlightening Conversations

Discussion in 'Funstuff and Inspiration' started by Larinda McRaven, Nov 2, 2008.

  1. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Same here. This topic is ... not sure what, to me lately. Sardonic and or ironic humor probably won't go over big, with me, at this point. Attention must be paid.

    What I will say is that I think, a lot of times, people equate faith with religion, so it can be a bit ... squiggly. I don't equate faith and religion (although I think faith is an important component of most religions I've been exposed to.) I don't believe the two are synonymous, or I wouldn't have made my original post in this thread. DF and religion? Not so much.

    One quick example of faith unrelated to religion is that my posting here after lo these many months is an act of faith that is not in the absence of fear. Nothing to do with religion.

    Just sayin. :wink:
  2. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    I thought about this statement, sub. I don't know hether you actually believe this statement or not, but my take? Sometimes people who think they've eschewed faith really haven't. It's just that different people have faith in different things/people.

    Example: I remember a conversation I had with a GF maybe ... 25? years ago, about the value of money. She was an intense saver. Intense. Not big on the stock market. Just piles of cash in the bank. In the event of emergency, GF was covered, no questions asked.

    Anyway, she got very offended when I, unknowingly, stepped on her faith. I expressed my opinion that money, these days, is largely a theoretical construct.** Back in the day when people used gold as currency, money was real, or at least more real. These days, it's 1s and 0s that are being moved around. Even paper money that you can touch is not representative of anything real. Money is money because the world economy has bought into the idea that it has value. The second people don't buy into that idea, everything collapses, as in Black Friday of 1929, or Black Friday 1987 or Black Friday recently (when was that? when the stock market recently plunged by a huge amount because of a computer glitch.) This is a gross oversimplification of my view, but still... my views on money aren't really the point of my post.

    When I said this, my GF became really shaken and upset, because I had inadvertently questioned her faith, not just in her bank account, but in her ability to provide for herself.

    I found that conversation enlightening enough to remember 25 years later.

    People can have faith in a lot of things. That doesn't mean they don't have faith. My $0.02.

    ** Not saying that I don't want theoretical lots of it. Just sayin. :tongue:
  3. bordertangoman

    bordertangoman Well-Known Member

    Wasnt Jussayin' the Greek Goddess of Always Being Right??
  4. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Yep. :wink: :tongue:

    Hey wait a second! My very first response on this topic conceded that TT was right; wording does matter and that Larinda was right; faith and fear DO coexist.

    I think you're just messing with me... not that this would be anything new, mind you. :rolleyes: :p
  5. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    See, without knocking anyone else's faith, Sub's statement is pretty much exactly the sentiment that led me to my "enlightenment." No cynicism at all (although I am extremely cynical in a lot of life). Really, truly, it is that thought that brought me peace and enlightenment.

    Not that it works for everyone, and not that others don't walk their own path and find their own way of going through life, but that statement can be a very enlightening thought.
  6. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    It can be liberating. I agree. And "faith," in one way it is often defined, can be very constraining -- not to everyone, just some people. Leaving my parents' church (aka "faith") was one of the most liberating moves I ever made.

    My only point is that faith can have multiple definitions. Self-reliance is one definition. Trust in another person is one. Building financial security is another manifestation of faith. Belief in a Higher Power is another. That's all I was saying.

    I wonder if it's possible to be truly without faith in anything or anyone. Hmm. Dunno. Lack of any sort of faith would be a crisis point for me. Not necessarily everyone, though.
  7. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Oops. I wrote that whole post thinking you said liberating rather than enlightening. Freudian slip?
  8. Peaches

    Peaches Well-Known Member

    Either that, or you know me well. ;-) It was, indeed, both liberating and enlightening.
  9. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    moving. beautiful. inspiring. love elephants. love the cello. love this.

  10. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Really interesting story on NPR (All Things Considered) this evening, about why and how people lie, cheat and steal. The Duke university professor who designed a bunch of studies ans had written books on the subject theorizes that MOST people lie/cheat, but they cheat in small enough amounts that they can keep their self-esteem intact.

    In one study of 30,000 he conducted, he said there were only about a dozen "bad apples" -- people who lied/cheated in a major way, and that dozen cost the study about $150. The remaining 30,000 ish "small" cheaters cost the study $36,000. According to him, everybody cheats.

    Neat story to give a listen to. I won't spoil all your fun by telling you everything he said.
  11. chomsky

    chomsky Well-Known Member

    I am trying to read something for the first time after 20 or so years. Reading a book...Anyways, let me recommend it to you, though I think someone at DF already did recommend it to me a while ago. It's called THE ELEMENT by Ken Robinson! It's a nice read!
  12. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    just discovered www dot indiegogo dot com, a "crowdfunding" platform. wow, what a great instantly inspired by knowing that many people's visions and grass-roots projects, creative ventures and humanitarian efforts will be able to find support in a way that wasn't possible, previously.

    felt it belonged in this thread, because it's like a hole being punched in the wall of a global paper bag, shedding light on personal & collective potentials.

    love to see technology & social media serving a truly constructive purpose.
  13. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    found above site through having watched a very disturbing vid, though... elderly woman on a school bus, being tormented by middle-school-aged young people (YT vid "making the bus monitor cry"). brings thoughts to mind on how to truly constructively deal with bullies...

    there's so much in the world that needs attending to...
  14. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    I saw that poor lady on CNN. My God! What kind of world are we living in? Who is raising our kids?
  15. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    these kids have received the twisted message that to harm and berate others gives them power. what they need is to be shown that it shows how weak and powerless they really are. they need a lesson in how "projection" their behavior toward others shows them to be exactly what they fear and try to protect.

    but we generally just want to punish them, thinking that's "discipline". they need leaders to set limits for them, for sure, but there's another piece i haven't seen enter the equation yet. problem won't get fixed til that degree of awareness is understood by those who are in charge of correcting their behavior.

    it is so sad to see such barbarism, though. reminds me of the kids in greece who would throw stones at an addled elderly relative of mine...psh.

    you're right, P - who's raising these kids?
  16. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Yes, sami. Yes. The kids in that scenario were even more powerless than the grandmom. It breaks my heart. It breaks my heart. Brutality is not power. It's giving in to ones base instincts.

    Vincit qui se vincit. (The motto of my high school.) He/she conquers who conquers her/himself.

    Yeah. We can bully retiree grandmas. Or we can stand up and support what we know is right. Who is raising our kids?
  17. samina

    samina Well-Known Member

    when their community sees the bully kids as pathetic rather than engendering rage, that will be a huge stride of progress.
  18. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Yes. It is very sad. I don't know. I don't know. I was blessed with a child who has his own moral compass and who does not stray from it.

    I don't know the solution, sami. I don't even know if there is a solution. The Lord of the Flies on a school bus? OMG.
  19. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    This was sent my way this morning via the Sikh ashram I frequent. I know we had talked about Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor previously in the thread, but here is another video of her retelling her experiences not only of her stroke but how she came through the other side and more importantly what she learned from it.

    What I found interesting was that during her stroke even though she was unable to recognize language, she still understood the intent behind the garbled words. And she theorizes so do babies and animals.

    The next thing I loved hearing was how she insisted that people replay the same tired stories of hurt and pain. And if one could simply stop replaying the track endlessly inside (or outside) their head, the pain miraculously disappears in 90 seconds. It literally only takes your body 90 seconds to "get happy" if you let it.

    This video inspired me to go buy her book My Stoke of Insight.
  20. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Wow. That is powerful stuff, Larinda.

    I don't have a lot to say in response, because I have to digest first.

    Tangentially related: When DS was about eight months old, I took him with me to Target one day. My habit, back then, was to chat with him like I would a sister or girlfriend, pretty much non-stop. While we were at Target, that day, a lady laughingly said, "Oh. You think he understands you, huh?" My response? "Yeah. He does."

    I believe that. Children do "know" the intent of what you are saying, even if they don't know the words yet. I also think they know words a lot sooner than might be comfortable for a lot of us. How else could they start forming (short) sentences in fifteen to eighteen months from birth?

    Kids are smart on a level that a lot of adults aren't. They are intuitive and observant. And often, they are uncomfortably honest... until we adults teach them to lie.

    I can't respond to the stroke thing right now because I had two this year, so it hits close to home.

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