Some Unconventional Philosophical Disturbances

If you think about the big names of philosophy, at least Western philosophy, but Eastern philosophy in it’s own way as well, and the conclusions that are promoted by them, we have to notice there’s an underlying assumption. It is the underlying assumption I think that no one wants to even touch.

These two major ways of sorting experience and knowledge, are no longer sufficient. In fact, they are unnecessary.

The re-post I put about agency there; I think it goes to this underlying assumption. As I put in my comment, I’m not really sure that it’s an issue of whether or not the words I am using are reaching anything, meaning, for example if I say shirt this word corresponds with that article of clothing over there that I put on. It is a simple fact that if I say hey bring me that pencil, it’s pretty damn likely that you’re gonna bring me a pencil. 

Of course, we all know the well-known linguistic turn proclamation of all things that words are totally arbitrary. That there is no necessary link between the word I’m using and the coffee table over there. That words are just conventions, random sounds, motions of mouths, mechanisms of my lung and diaphragm etc., and the words are just assembled in such a way because my neurons etc. etc.

My whole thing is if that’s the case, how could I possibly know it?

I think this is a question that we never really answer. Or, we answer it by relying on some sort of faith.

Now, I don’t mean this as a sort of self-confidence, self-esteem kind of mental health thing. I mean this in the sense that I just assume that my experience is foundational and I run everything through it, all my thinking, including thinking itself, including what I implicitly understand as thinking, but as well as I come upon human beings and the rest of the world. we have come to various conclusions about how we must go about being in the world if anything is supposed to make sense.

So here I’m gonna put something for that probably to 99% of the people just doesn’t make sense. I suppose we could call it speculative philosophy, and maybe it’s an extent of speculative philosophy, but, again, if my words really have no necessary correlation to anything I’m talking about, then how come if I say speculative philosophy everyone already has an idea about what it is?

Something else is going on. And I think there is a reason why people don’t like to ask this question. I think the reason is because of their faith. Because it offends their faith to ask such a question.

Beginnings

I’ve been doing Philosophy. for a while. I like to think that there’s nothing that I’m stumped about, at least so far as if someone’s putting forth an argument. But I will admit when my knowledge lacks as well.

But what most people don’t know is that really what started me maybe 30 years ago on this journey is I wanted to know what religion actually is.

This was come about through an even more basic query, if you will, into the situation: what is happening?

Some philosophers put doubt at the bottom or the beginning of philosophy, but I think the word doubt refers to a continual approach to the situation. I say the word “situation” because I feel it is more encompassing to what I’m talking about; if I say “existence“ then I’ll have a never ending series of people drawing from what other people wrote about it. If I say “universe“ likewise. So I say the situation. Because I’m talking about being, and I’m talking about existence, and I’m talking about the universe, but I’m also talking about so much more than that, such that I’m just actually talking about the situation right here. What is this? And I think even more basic is the question, what is happening?

Doubt simply doesn’t mean being critical, like our modern post modern structural ideological analyses want us to see it as.

Doubt is more a continual approach to what is happening, One that involves knowledge, but extends further than words.

To say that I can’t comprehend it, or We can’t know what it is, I think is an imprecise and faulty answer. Typically, when we look at any sort of epistemological ventures, ultimately at the end the Philosopher Hass to say “I don’t know”, or, “we don’t know”. Think Socrates: I know that I don’t know. That is the ironic beginning of a whole historical, tradition for epistemological method of how one is supposed to, say, properly, ethically, approach what is happening. It is a ironic, because we still talk about what the hell he was talking about. But, if he was talking about anything specific at all, it is the particular method that he breached which caused the whole problem of the method itself.

The problem of real method

These statements referred to a Situation of knowledge. Again, this situation Has to do with knowledge, so to pick out and start talking about “knowledge” really just avoids the question of what is happening. It might tell us some thing about what’s happening with knowledge or in knowledge, but it misses the rest of the 99% of everything. So it is with words.

Btw, I do not agree that words are arbitrary. I do not agree with the statements that we do not know or cannot know truths.

I say that those types of statements refer to a particular type of knowing that I call modern.

It is not difficult to sort through the history of written material that we have and find so many references to how the knowledge that we have right now is shaped in such a way along particular lines by particular conditions. Yet, it seems like when we go about doing Philosophy, we just throw that out the window.

Because of this act of throwing what we should know out the window when we go to posit and talk about things that we do know, it is a non sequitur to conclude that there are things that we don’t know or cannot know. It is this non sequitur that I say catalyzes, or creates the condition whereby people want to automatically ignore things for the sake of doing something, of producing something, of asserting arguing something. And the ultimate rebuttal to any question which challenges this method is that indeed: that’s what I’m trying to do. Indeed what I’m trying to do is I’m trying to make a name for myself somehow, I’m trying to make myself feel good, and in many cases I’m trying to make a living or a career so far as teachers, historians, philosophers, and people like that.

There must be two things going on. I would go so far as to suggest that the reason why we are in a “post truth” situation, even though arguably we’re not anymore— I don’t know — is because we do not want to look at what we’re throwing out through the act of trying to establish myself in self-confidence, self-esteem, self purpose, world ethics, I gotta put food on the table, I got a raise my children, I gotta look good for my peers…

It is not only “either/or”.

The kind of knowledge that uses reductive, either/or reasoning, is just that: a kind of knowledge. It is a particular method of using knowledge for certain kinds of ends, certain purposes.

Hence, it is a non sequitur to throw out the “either/or”because of the conclusions that were coming about it. It is a faulty way of understanding what is truly occurring, even as it is a valid way of engaging with the world.

Nonetheless, again, people will read my statement how it was faulty, and then they will recourse to say well it’s because our knowledge only reaches so far, or we don’t know that, or we can’t know that. It is this type of recourse to our faith, to this method of knowing, that I call redundant.

Again we’re not pointing fingers to say that something is wrong and so we need to fix it. We are suggesting what the truth of the situation is.

I would even go so far as to say due to the redundancy of our faith in modern knowledge, it is offensive to us to suggest that there is a truth that can be known and communicated, because it interferes with what we understand the method is supposed to be by which we find ourselves in the world, this modern way. Through this modern religion.

OK. That’s all for now. It got kind of long

🐮

Agency Is Gratefully Dead

Agency is going through the same fits as religion. When Nietzsche regarded society around him at the time, he declared that God is dead and asked now…

Agency Is Dead

—-Aaaaand of course, my comment.

I have never bought the idea that without some sort of God figure that everyone gets to do what they want. So, also I’m not really agreeing with the idea of agency here. I mean, yes there is some sort of crisis about this particular term and its role and how we show up in the world. That much I would agree.

However,

The plain fact of the matter is that probably a good chunk of the population of the globe does not “believe” in some sort of ethical judge ruler. In fact, I do not even think that most people “believe” in some sort of ethical standards. We simply run on them. I think that everyone just does whatever the hell they’re doing and then when we start talking about ethics or laws then we fall into this sort of black hole that we fill in with words that supposedly define the reason why I’m doing anything.

For sure when I’m walking my dog this morning, there’s nothing within me that is preventing me from stepping over and thrusting a knife into someone’s heart, you know, 20 feet away or something. Its only when I might ponder running over to this dude walking a dog and thrusting A knife into his heart that I begin to ponder these ideas about ethics and agency and God – if we I do at all ! But while I’m walking my dog there’s no such thing that’s preventing me from doing that simply because it has nothing to do with anything that I’m doing. I’m walking my dog taking in the cool morning and greenery that this early summer has to provide. There’s nothing ethical about it, there’s nothing about my agency that comes into play. It is only when I read this blog about agency and God but my mind begins to roll around in the dirt and pebbles of that thing or things.

Now, the only rebuttals that one could give to this sort of position would be to assume that there’s something underneath, some sort of Tetris like basis to my consciousness or my mind that has been filled in with ideas and values, and that my activity is kind of the blocks falling down from the sky that I’m trying to arrange into this foundation that has been settled before.

Literally, that’s the only rebuttal that can have any ground against what I’m talking about.

However, we would have to apply the same sense of God or agency or morality or ethics to the very fact that I might be able to read this blog about those topics and then have some sort of opinion about them. In this sense, we would have to argue something of the nature as to whether or not I have intelligence maybe. My point here is that someone would pick out some great idea to start talking about it as if it has some sort of existence or not existence that it’s informing all human beings or something like that.

We could just as easily have made the discussion about mind. Do I have a mind that is able to read the repost blog and have an opinion on it enough to write another post? How about An even more interesting one: gumption. Is there this essence of gumption that all human beings have such that I need to tell someone how it may or may not be the case, considering that someone was talking about God and ethics?

I could go on. in fact, I would suggest that we could go on and on and on in this direction about deciding or arguing about what things truly exist or have relevance and what things don’t, and if we had enough time we would have gone through to address the entire lexicon by which human beings communicate.

I personally would say, yes, the very fact that someone might be arguing of whether God exists necessarily requires that God exists. Because if God didn’t exist I would have no criteria, no way to reference what God is or is not. Same with agency.

Further, if someone wanted to argue that particular point of contention, I would say that what is it about the situation that feels like you have access to some essence of God that does or does not exist? Or even better yet, what makes you feel that there’s some sort of essence of yourself that has any ability to affect some other persons opinion as to whether or not they believe in God? Why should the existence of anything have to do with my reasoning about it? Whatever answer that person comes up with, ultimately would be another topic that could involve God or agency. Then even more revolting, why do I think that I have the power to know whether it exists or not exist in the sense that my argument would want to promote?

For whom, or to whom am I arguing?

What about this other person, or these people that I’m writing the blog to. How can I possibly know what “all of humanity” actually is, what they do, what they think, the reasons for it, or anything at all like that. Do the people that live on that island, I think in the Mediterranean, who are basically a xenophobic society that doesn’t let anyone else come onto their island – do they have agency? Do they “believe” in anything? 

I would think that they do, and they don’t. They have both not agency and indeed they have agency. 

So, I think there’s something else going on. And I don’t think it’s the question of nothingness, or some sort of enlightened Nirvana Ness. I don’t think that nihilism has any context here either, again, except in as much as I might think I’m getting somewhere by discussing what nihilism is.

Im just grateful that I might know what it is. 👽

The object of the discussion, like that rock over there. in-itself.

The arrogance! The Narcissism!

🧐

what am I talking about again?
x

RIDE THE TIGER | The Genetics of Mental Illness | PBS

http://www.pbs.org/ride-the-tiger/home/ RIDE THE TIGER Genetics plays a pivotal role in diagnosing mental illnesses. Scientists now believe many …

RIDE THE TIGER | The Genetics of Mental Illness | PBS

Nice.

and my Comment.

When it comes to mental illnesses, we are scared. I don’t think there’s anything more generally frightening than having a mental disorder. At least if you get cancer, or some sort of terminal illness, you know what the fear is: It’s that you’re going to die, actually cease body functioning dead.

When it comes to mental issues, the fear really is that we don’t know what the hell is going on. Not only the person who might have mental issues, but the empirical scientists who are studying it and trying to treat it, really have no clue what’s going on. Despite any of the arguments, this is a fact that can’t be denied — or, it can only be denied through repetitive assertion of progress pressed against hope.

I gotta say, whenever I hear things about how medicine or science might be progressing in the understanding of mental issues, I get kind of excited.

Even treatment options, some of them seem really exciting and helpful. when a treatment makes sense to me I get excited about learning it and helping someone with it, for sure.

Yet, there’s always the sour with the sweet in mental health. This is to say that however excited I might be about whatever new thing that someone is telling us about having to do with mental illness, knowledge of it, treatment of it, once I begin to explore what these people have to say, I inevitably realize that they’re 80% bewildered.

This kind of snake oil approach to mental health, where the placebo effect is functioning on such a grand scale, using statistics and headlines and basically driving good news off of the fear that just exists everywhere around mental health, really drives my philosophical work, but as well really, drives me to want to be there for people that are reaching out for help.

The Nay-Sayers.

Part of what I feel makes me genuine and effective as a mental health practitioner, if I say so myself —

— as I am saying so myself, but colleagues and instructors and mentors have said things very similar so I’m not basing this off of my own ego — that is, not entirely!!! —

– is that I understand the need to believe, but I also try to filter out the bullshit. But not only this; I feel one of the significant things to helping people with mental issues is involved with the attempt to realize that there is no clear reconciliation between mere belief and bullshit, which is to say, there is no sorting it out except in the way that someone actually sorts it out. There is no “pure belief”, and then the truth that lay behind the “pure bullshit”, when we’re approaching it in a certain light.

And I’m speaking to those who would be offended by me talking about the truth of the situation being that the scientists in this video, indeed the video makers, are trying to give us a certain amount of hope. The short video is really kind of saying like, hey, this terrible mental disorder has some sort of foundation in genes, and we’re working out to sort out just how that might be the case so people in the future, future generations may not have to deal with it.

Ok.

However, what they’re really saying is that they don’t know what the hell is going on.

I know that mental health relies heavily on a person’s belief, not only about themselves, but about the world, and about whether or not someone might be able to help them.

The reason why these scientists will not be able to find a gene that has to do with bipolar, or really any sort of mental disorder, is because of the history of mental disorders, which is to say, the way that “scientist/psychiatrist” came up with the idea that there must be something similar to mental disease as there is physical disease.

If I break a bone in my body we can point to the bone and we can say, there it is, and this is how we fix it.

Mental health, and mental disorder, is more like a person sitting in a room coughing. What is the cause of their coughing?  is it the smoke in the room? Is it the vapors coming off of the oil freshly painted walls with no windows? Is it the cilia in the lining of the lungs? Is it that they just took a bong hit and they’ve never smoked weed in their life? Is it because they smoke too much weed throughout their life? Did a fly just fly down their throat?

Now, this is a loose analogy, but it goes to the point of the difference between a physical disease and a mental health disease: 

There is nothing that is bipolar that we can truly find. It’s just a name that we give to a bunch of people that say certain things about their experience.

If you had 100 people called bipolar from whatever objective kind of disorder name that we wanna give them, and you go to talk to each of these hundred people about what is happening with them, you’ll find that there’s 100 different types of bipolar, and at one end, the person’s description will look nothing like the person at the other end. 

In mental issues, the thing that drives them together to cause scientists to look for a gene behind the mental illness is utterly one of faith. And not in the bad way you are thinking, by the way.

As we go down this route, because for sure science will continue going down this route, what will happen is you’ll have a whole group, perhaps a whole generation of people, that are calling themselves bipolar, that is are understood as bipolar, or any other mental issue, all going towards this science of curing the problem, and what will happen is a lifetime of just as much problem as they had before. It might be a different set of problem, it might appear a little bit differently than 20 years ago or whatever, but it’ll just be another set of problems.

The perfect example is what happens to people with the more acute mental disorders who take the antipsychotic medicines for their schizophrenia or their bipolar or whatever. After a time their body starts to react in certain ways. In general, they call this problem tardive dyskinesia. In fact, it is so prevailing now that we have advertisements on the TV on cable on the Internet marketing more medication to help people with their tardive dyskinesia that they’ve gotten from taking medicines for their “bipolar”.

In an ironic twist, it is actually the scientists who are the naysayers. They are saying “no” there is a thing an actual disease of the human body called xyz mental illness.  Their faith, leads them to solve one problem, and then another problem opens up. But of course, it may be easier to deal with the second problem, but one has to wonder just what does bipolar, or any name of mental disease, is, if it just leads one down a long chain of more problems. 

Solutions.

I think some of the problem that maybe some of my readers might have is that I sound like I’m naysaying all the science and all the stuff that goes into helping people with these mental issues. I am not.

What I’m saying is that I’m a realist. The fact of the matter is that no matter what initial mental illness may present itself, it is just something that the person is gonna have to deal with in whatever way that they’re dealing with it, or whatever way they don’t deal with it. There is not gonna be any magic pill for the people who suffer. There may be a magic pill that gets them 70% of the way, but anyone who suffers from mental issues will tell you that medicines never cure the disease. They only help with getting the person to a place where they’re able to decide that they need to deal with it themselves. And that is good ! Like I said: I am not a hater.

But what does that say about the genetic basis of mental disorder? 

Drugs and Reality

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with doing drugs. I think the question is personal. And I think the question is just, for our modern day, what drugs do I take.

I’m not being sarcastic or ironic, I’m not being pessimistic or cynical. In my blog I try to deal with things as they actually are.

Just as in my practice I try to deal with people as they actually are.

And often, the way things actually are do not match up with the way people actually are.

Maybe that’s the true problem.

🧠🌝❤️

Reality is Not All That We Make It Up To Be

Thursday night’s first hearing will feature firsthand witnesses to the violence at the U.S. Capitol as well as video clips of testimony from top Trump aides.
— Read on www.huffpost.com/entry/jan-6-committee-first-hearing-capitol-riot_n_62a10863e4b06169ca862faf

—— We get to make our own realities.

This is the basis through which all current political worlds can be found to be reducible to the explanatory of mental health.

That is a very common phrase that has become so ubiquitous to our modern reality, we forget it is a post-modern ideal. From a counseling and mental health standpoint yes, we make our own realities through making meaning.

However, a very simple and basic truth of it is, sure, we get to make our own worlds, but at some point the truth of the universe, big-R, REALITY is coming in and you are going to have to deal with it.

The way that mental health becomes explanatory is happens next.

Those who stick to the total idealism of semantic reality-making get defensive, and double down on the world they have made. This leads to one or both of two things:

  1. Mental break down, or what we like to call an existential crisis. This is where ultimately the person is faced with the truth of their situation and has to deal with it.
  2. Violence.

This is mental health, not an existential issue. An existential issue has to with with item #1. The true issue has to do with both items.

That is to say, how do we ethically reconcile our want to enact violence for the righteousness our ethical worlds?

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