My IT guy has eliminated the cryptocurrency mining franchise which had apparently taken up residence on this site and also he has upgraded the template, so bear with me whilst I learn it anew.
Firstly, wow, what a device, see this link https;//ldrt.ch/tks127
And now, a random rambling cornucopia of bits upon reaching pensionable age: -
Old age doesn’t seem so bad when you consider the alternative, over the hill seems preferable to under it.
I gazed upon the star Aldebaran having discovered that due to its distance at 65 light years, the light I perceived (and hence became quantum entangled with) set off on my zeroth birthday. I hope that I have not inadvertently just invented yet another useless form of natal astrology.
Nevertheless, I do hope against all sense and reason to survive to see my Uranus return (84 years), much remains to do, sorting the cosmology problem took 20 years, quantum hyperspheres remain a daunting quest. We still lack a tight theory of the magical link.
A festive interlude in the Scottish Highlands visiting the expanding clan proved a delight. A six-mile hike to the top of Plodda falls through icy and beautiful terrain culminated in a magnificent view and a splendid experience of vertigo, and afterwards so as not to show weakness in front of the Scots we did a sub-zero outdoor barbeque.
Fort George on the Moray Firth provides examples of one of the largest Georgian artillery fortress in the world and the bizarre bonkers-ness of regimental life. It even has a cemetery for regimental mascots and officers dogs. Highland battledress seems designed to convince any enemy of the dangerous madness of the wearer. The fortress seemed awesomely overbuilt just to supress any unlikely further Jacobite uprisings after Culloden, perhaps it also serves to interdict the passage of monsters to the Ness. Thirteen-inch bore mortars seem a bit excessive for use against tartan-clad swordsmen; I think they actually threw depth charges.
A post festive trip to Barcelona brightened up the end of January; we did the inevitable tourist sights. The Modernista Sagrada Familia cathedral looks brilliant from a distance or as a monochrome scale model. Close up however it looks laughably kitsch and tacky. Catholic cathedrals usually have a dignified exterior and reserve all their gaudy sentimental and macabre religious tat for the inside. Unfortunately, here they have put it all over the outside as well, making it look like a castle in a religious Disneyland. Because they have used modern materials it probably will not last a century judging by the deterioration of the Park Gueli structures by the same architect.
The early Picassos impress with their superb draughtsmanship and eclecticism of styles. The late ones suggest a profound diminution of eyesight and mind.
A side pilgrimage to the Salvador Dali theatre/museum/shrine at Figueres proved the high point of the holiday, a day in the dreamscapes of the high priest of Pareidolia; hallucination and imagination and the subconscious running in splendid magnificent riot.
Do I worry about the POTUS? Not much. Politics has always consisted of a shitstorm of spin, misinformation, propaganda, and fake news. Technology has merely accelerated this and made it more obvious. Trump hasn’t actually done anything too terrible yet despite playing a mixture of madman strategy and dumbman strategy that has thoroughly confused his adversaries. We only used to find out about the downsides and clay feet of our glorious leaders long afterwards, now we get it in realtime. At least North Korea and South Korea seem to have made friends at last, loudmouth madman strategy can work you know.
Whilst away I read a copy of Dan Brown’s ‘Origin’, I got for xmas. This lively story revolves around the discovery of a bit of science that could overturn most of the world’s major religions.
I won’t spoil it for you except to say look out for the bits on Chaos and the Chaos symbol itself in the text.
The discovery didn’t turn out as I’d expected from the cosmological hints in the story, nevertheless it certainly would throw a spanner in the works of most creation myths if it pans out.
This led me to muse upon a discovery that would undermine ALL creation stories and myths, including the scientific creation myth, and I realised that we may have it already: -
WHAT IF THE UNIVERSE HAS NO ORIGIN?
That probably sounds crazy within almost everyone’s current thought processes, we remain accustomed to phenomena having a beginning and an ending, although they merely change from one state to another, but if we rephrase it as -
WHAT IF REALITY HAS NO ORIGIN?
Then it perhaps becomes easier to contemplate
It lies here -
Awaiting confirmation or falsification.
And in other news, asked to explain my aparently incomprehensible political position I came up with this:-
Inequality has come in for fashionable criticism recently, but do we really have too much of it or do we not have enough of it?
On one hand many of us spend much of our lives life trying to gain financial, social, and intellectual advantages over our fellow humans and to pass such advantages primarily to our offspring, and secondarily to our tribes of family, friends, and nation. We applaud ambition.
On the other hand, we tend to demand reciprocity from those who achieve wealth and power, and we find satisfaction in forcibly redistributing it through taxes and revolutions.
Yet wealth and power seem like heat in thermodynamics, they only do useful work when unevenly distributed.
Life itself, and lively societies, require entropy gradients.
Temporarily dominant individuals, polities and empires have created or sponsored most of our culture, science, art, religion and magic.
Ancient Egypt, Classical Greece, The Roman & Chinese Empires, The Islamic Empire, Renaissance and post renaissance Europe, The British Empire, The post WW2 American Empire, and now perhaps the New Chinese Empire. (Non – exhaustive list, I just picked some of the big players). A lot of people had, and will have, fun, liberation and enlightenment in building up and in attacking these structures.
Useful work occurs as wealth and power accumulate and then dissipate, as social friction, upheavals, revolution, and war occur.
Inequalities of wealth and power, empires and patronage, and the initiatives to tear such things down, have led to all the advances of our species.
As a Chaoist I do not have to have a set of opinions that conforms to other people’s standards of consistency.
Have you noticed how boring and dull equality gets? Strife seems so much more stimulating.
I reject the EU on the basis that it seeks to create economic and moral uniformity from the Baltic to the Mediterranean and from the Atlantic to the Urals.
Have you heard much interesting news from Denmark, Sweden, Norway or New Zealand recently?
Do you think that redistributive social welfare policies lead to the unnatural survival of feckless fools and apparent failures, and a resulting drop in collective fitness, or a useful broadening of genetic diversity?
Do you think that all cultures, societies, religions, and moral philosophies have equal value?
Alternatively, do you think some cultures, societies, religions, and moral philosophies have outlived their initial usefulness and gone bad and now need destroying?
Yes, I feel simultaneously conservative and radical. Inequality seems worth both striving for and against, depending on context and personal circumstance.
A healthy polity encourages both the accumulation and the dissipation of wealth and power.
Chaos, Discord, Confusion, Bureaucracy, Decadence.
The Zeitgeist revolves, hopefully in an upward spiral. Western civilisation currently seems currently on the cusp between Decadence and a New Chaos.
In the developed world we have sorted out the Discord and Confusion with many revolutions and a massive dose of Bureaucracy only to find that Decadence doesn’t seem all that satisfactory either.
Plus Also ::: I may yet collaborate on another book which we shall definitely NOT call '50 Shades of Gnosis'.
This will deal with a huge variety of methods of achieving altered states of mind, belief, and magic. (None of them involving chemognosis because that never lived up to the hype and I never met a wizard who made a success of it.)