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    Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

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    Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by Ren's View on Tue Oct 18, 2016 4:28 pm

    I'm going to start this topic off with something from Paul Chefurka.  Here is a year-past interview where Paul shares a history of the trails (or you could flip the vowels and get trials) that helped him to his view of awareness: Paul Chefurka interview, Adrastia

    In my view, awareness may or may not be a possible aspect of consciousness.  I leave that possibility open for now.  The following will be found on Paul's home page of his blog, Approaching the Limits to Growth:


    Climbing the Ladder of Awareness

    When it comes to our understanding of the unfolding global crisis, each of us seems to fit somewhere along a continuum of awareness that can be roughly divided into five stages:


    1. Dead asleep. At this stage there seem to be no fundamental problems, just some shortcomings in human organization, behaviour and morality that can be fixed with the proper attention to rule-making. People at this stage tend to live their lives happily, with occasional outbursts of annoyance around election times or the quarterly corporate earnings seasons.



    2. Awareness of one fundamental problem. Whether it's Climate Change, overpopulation, Peak Oil, chemical pollution, oceanic over-fishing, biodiversity loss, corporatism, economic instability or sociopolitical injustice, one problem seems to engage the attention completely. People at this stage tend to become ardent activists for their chosen cause. They tend to be very vocal about their personal issue, and blind to any others.



    3. Awareness of many problems. As people let in more evidence from different domains, the awareness of complexity begins to grow.  At this point a person worries about the prioritization of problems in terms of their immediacy and degree of impact. People at this stage may become reluctant to acknowledge new problems - for example, someone who is committed to fighting for social justice and against climate change may not recognize the problem of resource depletion.  They may feel that the problem space is already complex enough, and the addition of any new concerns will only dilute the effort that needs to be focused on solving the "highest priority" problem.



    4. Awareness of the interconnections between the many problems. The realization that a solution in one domain may worsen a problem in another marks the beginning of large-scale system-level thinking. It also marks the transition from thinking of the situation in terms of a set of problems to thinking of it in terms of a predicament. At this point the possibility that there may not be a solution begins to raise its head. 


      People who arrive at this stage tend to withdraw into tight circles of like-minded individuals in order to trade insights and deepen their understanding of what's going on. These circles are necessarily small, both because personal dialogue is essential for this depth of exploration, and because there just aren't very many people who have arrived at this level of understanding.



    5. Awareness that the predicament encompasses all aspects of life.  This includes everything we do, how we do it, our relationships with each other, as well as our treatment of the rest of the biosphere and the physical planet. With this realization, the floodgates open, and no problem is exempt from consideration or acceptance. The very concept of a "Solution" is seen through, and cast aside as a waste of effort.


    For those who arrive at Stage 5 there is a real risk that depression will set in. After all, we've learned throughout our lives that our hope for tomorrow lies in  our ability to solve problems today.  When no amount of human cleverness appears able to solve our predicament the possibility of hope can vanish like a the light of a candle flame, to be replaced by the suffocating darkness of despair.

    How people cope with despair is of course deeply personal, but it seems to me there are two general routes people take to reconcile themselves with the situation.  These are not mutually exclusive, and most of us will operate out of some mix of the two.  I identify them here as general tendencies, because people seem to be drawn more to one or the other.  I call them the outer path and the inner path.

    If one is inclined to choose the outer path, concerns about adaptation and local resilience move into the foreground, as exemplified by the Transition Network and Permaculture Movement. To those on the outer path, community-building and local sustainability initiatives will have great appeal.  Organized party politics seems to be less attractive to people at this stage, however.  Perhaps politics is seen as part of the problem, or perhaps it's just seen as a waste of effort when the real action will take place at the local level.

    If one is disinclined to choose the outer path either because of temperament or circumstance, the inner path offers its own set of attractions.

    Choosing the inner path involves re-framing the whole thing in terms of consciousness, self-awareness and/or some form of transcendent perception.  For someone on this path it is seen as an attempt to manifest Gandhi's message, "Become the change you wish to see in the world," on the most profoundly personal level.  This message is similarly expressed in the ancient Hermetic saying, "As above, so below." Or in plain language,  "In order to heal the world, first begin by healing yourself."

    However, the inner path does not imply a "retreat into religion". Most of the people I've met who have chosen an inner path have as little use for traditional religion as their counterparts on the outer path have for traditional politics.  Organized religion is usually seen as part of the predicament rather than a valid response to it. Those who have arrived at this point have no interest in hiding from or easing the painful truth, rather they wish to create a coherent personal context for it. Personal spirituality of one sort or another often works for this, but organized religion rarely does.

    It's worth mentioning that there is also the possibility of a serious personal difficulty at this point.  If someone cannot choose an outer path for whatever reasons, and is also resistant to the idea of inner growth or spirituality as a response the the crisis of an entire planet, then they are truly in a bind. There are few other doorways out of this depth of despair.  If one remains stuck here for an extended period of time, life can begin to seem awfully bleak, and violence against either the world or oneself may begin begin to seem like a reasonable option.  Keep a watchful eye on your own progress, and if you encounter someone else who may be in this state, please offer them a supportive ear.

    From my observations, each successive stage contains roughly a tenth of the number people as the one before it. So while perhaps 90% of humanity is in Stage 1, less than one person in ten thousand will be at Stage 5 (and none of them are likely to be politicians).  The number of those who have chosen the inner path in Stage 5 also seems to be an order of magnitude smaller than the number who are on the outer path.

    I happen to have chosen an inner path as my response to a Stage 5 awareness. It works well for me, but navigating this imminent (transition, shift, metamorphosis - call it what you will), will require all of us - no matter what our chosen paths - to cooperate on making wise decisions in difficult times.

    Best wishes for a long, exciting and fulfilling  journey.

    Bodhi Paul Chefurka
    October 19, 2012


    I'm not sure if a ladder or a hierarchy is really the best way to wrap my mind around these thoughts.  I think it may offer a way to map, or if you prefer, to structure the ideas for our thinking mind, but a map is not the territory as Alfred Korzybski once pointed out.  I do think the awareness that Paul calls to our attention can be differentiated, and even observed.  So a map can be useful, as long as we remain clear in our own awareness that its only a map. But I also believe that the way we use our mind to make sense of things is also part of the sense itself.  I also tend to sense that a way of thinking that is less linear might be a better approximation of stages of awareness.  Just a thought.  And I do believe this is worth some.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by dleet on Sat Oct 22, 2016 5:22 am

    Limits to Growth was required reading when I was in school at UC's DAA (now DAAP).

    I also visit  Brain Pickings regularly for a dose of awareness or just awareness maintenance.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by Ren's View on Sat Oct 22, 2016 10:18 am

    In his above 2015 interview Paul Chefurka lists the following key books as highlights in his journey to drawing the above map of his awareness spectrum:

    Silent Spring by Rachael Carson


    Limits to Growth commissioned by the Club of Rome


    "I didn’t become fully aware of what is happening in the world until I began to investigate Peak Oil in 2004"

    Collapse by Jared Diamond


    Ishmael and The Story of B Novels by Daniel Quinn

    The Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph Tainter

    The Ascent of Humanity” by Charles Eisenstein

    Overshoot: The Ecological Basis of Revolutionary Change by William R. Catton

    Significant Website: Die Off

    As he says, the moment of awakening for him was 2004.

    He writes that map of awareness and puts it on his website Oct. 19, 2012.  The website is a self-revealed chronicle of his path that he sees beginning in 2004.  I think it's rare to get something so well defined out of anyone.

    What I noticed intuitively when I stumbled upon his website not long ago is some parallels in our individual paths. These parallels are somewhat confirmed by those books and issues (like Peak Oil) he highlights. Naturally I expect that personality differences, age, experience, to name only a few significant individual aspects, will bear on any individual's path.  No two, therefore, will be duplicates.  To see anything of value, I think it's necessary to look at patterns, and to recognize that process is always at play.

    I don't see myself as "in" any one of those stages he defines. My sense of where I am is more six dimensional and flowing than easily defined and mapped. It doesn't seem to detract from that in any way when I take the trouble to look and map at any detail. I am always doing the inner path no matter what else I may attend to.  I think that inner path began for me in 1967 at a consciousness level, but I also can see how I was always moving towards that in my explorations, going way back to childhood.  Questing seems an apt word for it. I can't remember exactly when my sense of the complexity of all that's going on hit the notion that it's far beyond my ability to detail and begin to fix.  It wasn't an Aha! kind of thing. There was a letting go, but it was also mixed with efforts to convince myself there is some hope that can somehow be applied at my direct experiential level.  That's pretty much non existent in my awareness now.  I offer thoughts like those that Paul suggests as the outer path focus at his level 5 as options for others who aren't seemingly comfortable with abandoning activist hope.   I've explored them in some depth because I found them interesting.

    Paul notes: "More than any other, I was deeply moved, both intellectually and emotionally, by William Catton’s magnificent little book, “Overshoot”."  I'm guessing he didn't read that until after 2004.  Because I read it in 1980 and it was also a "more than any other" kind of read, both before and since.  The very language of ecology became a conscious effort on my part after that.  Anyway, I agree with him, and I now recommend it with The Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph Tainter as the two most insightful reads on this subject.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by dleet on Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:35 pm

    https://www.brainpickings.org/2016/05/23/against-self-criticism-adam-phillips-unforbidden-pleasures/
    Is a recognition that many interpretations are needed to better perceive reality. Many different perspectives hedge a designer's fatal flaw of falling in love with a single solution that keeps being rewritten to become more unitary and almost  gets relegated to what amounts to the convinced just shouting it louder instead of explaining the other pieces that are a part, or the ecology of parts. There is a bit of freud, and superego,  which is appropriate.
    A little card in the column, "Sit next to a stream and listen" reminded me of you, too.

    With an eye to Freud’s legacy and the familiar texture of the human experience, Phillips makes his central point:
    You can only understand anything that matters — dreams, neurotic symptoms, literature — by overinterpreting it; by seeing it from different aspects as the product of multiple impulses. Overinterpretation here means not settling for one interpretation, however apparently compelling it is. Indeed, the implication is — and here is Freud’s ongoing suspicion, or ambivalence, about psychoanalysis — that the more persuasive, the more compelling, the more authoritative, the interpretation is, the less credible it is, or should be. The interpretation might be the violent attempt to presume to set a limit where no limit can be set.
    Here, the ideological wink at Sontag becomes apparent. Indeed, the Sontag classic would’ve been better titled “Against an Interpretation,” for the essence of her argument is precisely that a single interpretation invariably warps and flattens any text, any experience, any cultural artifact. (How tragicomical to see, then, that areviewer who complains that Phillips’s writing is too open to interpretation both misses his point and, in doing so, makes it.)
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by Ren's View on Sun Oct 23, 2016 6:04 am

    First thing that now comes to my mind after taking a long, skeptical look at the field of pscho-analysis, and after observing the mess I see it has created in the minds of people I've known intimately, is that the "great" patrician of that field was a product of civilization.  His very rational and hierarchical way of organizing his view of the minds he studied (Id, ego and super-ego) was like a chiropractor studying the backs of farmers after a lifetime of shaping them through the burden and toil of farming, rather than studying the backs of gatherer/hunters (of course not available to the chiropractor or Freud), and thinking that's the way the back should be formed.  Many of the things that chiropractors had me do to relieve my back pain, like enhancing rather than straightening the curve at the neck and the lower back are the opposite of what I learned to do with tai chi, which was what I finally used as a way to free myself of years of neck and lower back pain that began in my mid teens while working on a farm, and get the energy flowing through my body again so that I felt good all over.  When I feel good I have no problem telling that little inner dictator to go fuck itself.

    Of course I went to chiropractors because the doctors wanted to put me under their knives and other medical technology whereby they would permanently fuse the spine and remove sections of it from its innate potential for mobility, which of course to them was the source of my pain.  Well.  I'm seventy now, and I got myself out of pain by studying tai chi 26 years ago as a holistic set of movements and posture, which introduced me to a very different view of how to be in the world, physically and mentally.

    In a simplified way of expressing it, a way that appeals to association by analogy and the necessary context of shared reading, what I see your brain picking selection talking about is that notion of the "dictatorship of reason in the West" that John Ralston Paul is trying to bring to consciousness in his trilogy of books that begins with Voltaire's Bastards.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by Ren's View on Sun Oct 23, 2016 8:20 am

    dleet wrote:https://www.brainpickings.org/2016/05/23/against-self-criticism-adam-phillips-unforbidden-pleasures/
    Is a recognition that many interpretations are needed to better perceive reality. Many different perspectives hedge a designer's fatal flaw of falling in love with a single solution that keeps being rewritten to become more unitary and almost gets relegated to what amounts to the convinced just shouting it louder instead of explaining the other pieces that are a part, or the ecology of parts. There is a bit of freud, and superego,  which is appropriate.
    A little card in the column, "Sit next to a stream and listen" reminded me of you, too.

    Some familiar terrain in the brainpickings side bar:

    An Antidote to the Age of Anxiety: Alan Watts on Happiness and How to Live with Presence

    Alan's The Way of Zen came to me in late 1967 after my eruption and a vain attempt to break the chains of the military institution that came down upon me as the budding American Empire invaded Vietnam for what turns out to be non defensive purposes, though of course defense of and within the empire can always be rationalized.

    Presence, while I was sitting in a jail cell, reading The Way of Zen, became something I could actually take some time to examine directly.  Directly versus abstractly is a big part of the doing of now.

    Maria Popova wrote:

    This concept of presence is rooted in Eastern notions of mindfulness — the ability to go through life with crystalline awareness and fully inhabit our experience — largely popularized in the West by British philosopher and writer Alan Watts (January 6, 1915–November 16, 1973), who also gave us this fantastic meditation on the life of purpose. In the altogether excellent 1951 volume The Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety (public library), Watts argues that the root of our human frustration and daily anxiety is our tendency to live for the future, which is an abstraction. He writes:

    Alan Watts wrote:

    If to enjoy even an enjoyable present we must have the assurance of a happy future, we are “crying for the moon.” We have no such assurance. The best predictions are still matters of probability rather than certainty, and to the best of our knowledge every one of us is going to suffer and die. If, then, we cannot live happily without an assured future, we are certainly not adapted to living in a finite world where, despite the best plans, accidents will happen, and where death comes at the end.


    What keeps us from happiness, Watts argues, is our inability to fully inhabit the present:

    Alan Watts wrote:

    The “primary consciousness,” the basic mind which knows reality rather than ideas about it, does not know the future. It lives completely in the present, and perceives nothing more than what is at this moment. The ingenious brain, however, looks at that part of present experience called memory, and by studying it is able to make predictions. These predictions are, relatively, so accurate and reliable (e.g., “everyone will die”) that the future assumes a high degree of reality — so high that the present loses its value.

    But the future is still not here, and cannot become a part of experienced reality until it is present. Since what we know of the future is made up of purely abstract and logical elements — inferences, guesses, deductions — it cannot be eaten, felt, smelled, seen, heard, or otherwise enjoyed. To pursue it is to pursue a constantly retreating phantom, and the faster you chase it, the faster it runs ahead. This is why all the affairs of civilization are rushed, why hardly anyone enjoys what he has, and is forever seeking more and more. Happiness, then, will consist, not of solid and substantial realities, but of such abstract and superficial things as promises, hopes, and assurances.


    Watts argues that our primary mode of relinquishing presence is by leaving the body and retreating into the mind — that ever-calculating, self-evaluating, seething cauldron of thoughts, predictions, anxieties, judgments, and incessant meta-experiences about experience itself. Writing more than half a century before our age of computers, touch-screens, and the quantified self, Watts admonishes:


    Alan Watts wrote:

    The brainy modern loves not matter but measures, no solids but surfaces.

    [...]

    The working inhabitants of a modern city are people who live inside a machine to be batted around by its wheels. They spend their days in activities which largely boil down to counting and measuring, living in a world of rationalized abstraction which has little relation to or harmony with the great biological rhythms and processes. As a matter of fact, mental activities of this kind can now be done far more efficiently by machines than by men — so much so that in a not too distant future the human brain may be an obsolete mechanism for logical calculation. Already the human computer is widely displaced by mechanical and electrical computers of far greater speed and efficiency. If, then, man’s principal asset and value is his brain and his ability to calculate, he will become an unsaleable commodity in an era when the mechanical operation of reasoning can be done more effectively by machines.




    !!!!!

    I didn't get my hands on that book with those thoughts until I finally escaped the machinery of the military industrial complex and got back to a life of study.  They lay somewhere within, not consciously recalled, but certainly not dormant, until reading those quotes.  But, wow. I see the influence in a confluence with my present. I have left the horrors of cities to live here in close touch with a living environment, in a county with less people in total than a very smallish city, around 22,000.  Yes, its ecology has been seriously damaged by the extractive processes of industrial civilization, but the natural processes are at work, completely present and unconcerned that a possible apocalypse is brewing, steadily building new ecologies all around me, again, present and unconcerned that Weyerhaeuser is waiting for the trees to get to about forty years of age again for the next harvest.

    And another link with an author to whose class I'd managed to gain entry just when my life went into a tailspin as my ex decided to... I don't know, leave I guess.  But I never stopped being writerly, and I doubt the class would have made much difference about that:

    How We Spend Our Days Is How We Spend Our Lives: Annie Dillard on Choosing Presence Over Productivity

    Maria Popova wrote:

    From The Writing Life (public library) by Annie Dillard — a wonderful addition to the collected wisdom of beloved writers — comes this beautiful and poignant meditation on the life well lived, reminding us of the tradeoffs between presence and productivity that we’re constantly choosing to make, or not:

    Annie Dillard wrote:

    How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing. A schedule defends from chaos and whim. It is a net for catching days. It is a scaffolding on which a worker can stand and labor with both hands at sections of time. A schedule is a mock-up of reason and order—willed, faked, and so brought into being; it is a peace and a haven set into the wreck of time; it is a lifeboat on which you find yourself, decades later, still living. Each day is the same, so you remember the series afterward as a blurred and powerful pattern.


    She goes on to illustrate this existential tension between presence and productivity with a fine addition to history’s great daily routines and daily rituals:

    Annie Dillard wrote:

    The most appealing daily schedule I know is that of a turn-of-the-century Danish aristocrat. He got up at four and set out on foot to hunt black grouse, wood grouse, woodcock, and snipe. At eleven he met his friends, who had also been out hunting alone all morning. They converged “at one of these babbling brooks,” he wrote. He outlined the rest of his schedule. “Take a quick dip, relax with a schnapps and a sandwich, stretch out, have a smoke, take a nap or just rest, and then sit around and chat until three. Then I hunt some more until sundown, bathe again, put on white tie and tails to keep up appearances, eat a huge dinner, smoke a cigar and sleep like a log until the sun comes up again to redden the eastern sky. This is living…. Could it be more perfect?”


    Dillard juxtaposes the Danish aristocrat’s revelry in everyday life with the grueling routine of a couple of literary history’s most notorious self-disciplinarians...


    Ah yes, Annie goes on to share what she knows about the self-disciplined writer/artists.  I was warned to expect that she would be similarly expectational of self-discipline in those wannabe writers who sought to attend her classes, as well.

    Meanwhile, as Annie lives out on Orcas Island, writing her thoughts, then commuting by a ferry made in a ferry factory in Seattle through the lovely island scenery to Bellingham, WA in order to teach a few days a week in the MFA writing program at WWU, working people, not thinking deeply about their daily programmed lives in these lofty idyllic ways, routinely clog freeways as they follow a lifetime of scheduled discipline, working, producing, purchasing, objectified and objectifying, all embodied in the systemic networkings of institutions that make up the complex societies of an ever progressing industrial civilization.  If they think of it at all, they imagine themselves evolved and evolving over an invention they think of as the far behind primitive life. So, after all, a "schedule defends from chaos and whim." Meanwhile, ecologies all over the planet are destroyed and dying by the spread of this human institutional machinery -- as Alan Watts noticed in his writing, the what that it actually is.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by dleet on Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:15 am

    Thanks, ren, and I think we're swimming in the same pools of water or tapping those souces for the rich flow and sounds of continual renewal and crisp scenes of undiscovered life forms, now I was talking of the streams and flows in my mind. I hadn't used a water metaphore for awhile.My mind may eventually be the only place I can find such images or to quench. 

    I found myself described in http://bostonreview.net/forum/avishai-margalit-assaf-sharon-confronting-religious-revivalism  3 responses are offered 1 is nuanced, 1 is militant, and the 3rd was amazement or just confusion. Guess which one is my type? I am so much safer from myself over here.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by Ren's View on Mon Oct 24, 2016 7:53 am

    dleet wrote:Thanks, ren, and I think we're swimming in the same pools of water or tapping those souces for the rich flow and sounds of continual renewal and crisp scenes of undiscovered life forms, now I was talking of the streams and flows in my mind. I hadn't used a water metaphore for awhile.My mind may eventually be the only place I can find such images or to quench. 

    I found myself described in http://bostonreview.net/forum/avishai-margalit-assaf-sharon-confronting-religious-revivalism  3 responses are offered 1 is nuanced, 1 is militant, and the 3rd was amazement or just confusion. Guess which one is my type? I am so much safer from myself over here.

    Yes, I think we may be swimming in the same murky pools.  Let me expand a little on how that swimming goes.

    I presume you mean these:

    Avishai Margalit & Assaf Sharon wrote:

    Traditionalist revivalism tends to evoke three types of responses. One is fascination. Michel Foucault’s embarrassing embrace of Iran’s Islamic revolution is a prime example. Another, typical of revolutionary Marxists and scientistic atheists, is militant rejection of religion as such. A third is more nuanced, advocating neither reckless romanticism nor blanket rejection but critical engagement.



    I see that:

    • "romanticism" equals fascination (amazement or confusion?);
    • "scientistic atheism" equals militant rejection;
    • "critical engagement" equals nuanced


    All in relation to an argument being carried out in the Boston Review regarding "traditional revivalism."  A abstract description for some sort of notion about a social process involving a huge and complex process taking place within society that intellectuals like to think and argue about in their ivory towers.  What follows on that page is a view put forth by a couple of philosophy professors at two Israeli universities.

    Though the argument I'm looking at there seems to have its primary focus on what's taking place in Israel, it waxes general enough to cover any nation with any sort of movement towards traditional revivalist goals.  I suppose a rallying cry like "I'm going to make America great again" might even be considered within that categorization.  The whole thing is so loosely abstract to begin with it seems like there's plenty of room to fit that in.

    In this opening gambit, they mention Michael Walzer's argument for critical engagement:

    Avishai Margalit & Assaf Sharon wrote:

    Walzer’s recipe for combating religious revivalism is critical engagement. “Alongside the ongoing work of negation,” he writes, “the tradition has to be acknowledged and its different parts ingathered” so they can “become the subject of ongoing argument and negotiation.” This is primarily an intellectual endeavor, focused on textual and cultural interpretation. As Walzer has written elsewhere, “The texts of our tradition are important, not holy. Every generation must read them again, and must debate them, to choose some and reject others,” with the aim of developing democratic, egalitarian versions of traditional texts and customs.


    Yeah, well, if only...

    One of my neighbors is a retired military conservative; he's religious, and he's a non believer in the findings from the sciences of ecology and climatology while a believer in the Bible and whatever God might have in store for us.  I'm also aware through a friend who knows him well enough to say this with some confidence: that he has gone through some personal dilemmas regarding his current option for the Republican candidate for president, which helps me explain the following, which I happened to have noted to my friend in a discussion we were having over coffee on Saturday.  First there was a Trump sign on his lawn last Spring.  Then the sign came down.  It stayed down until just last week.  Now it's up again.

    My friend tells me that the sign came down when Trump stated that John McCain was not a war hero but a loser, because he got captured.  Losers get caught, winners, or heroes, don't.  Something like that anyway.  This of course violates a basic fundamental tradition of respect in the military.  Then he compounded that affront by attacking a Gold Star couple who lost their son in Iraq, who happened to be Muslims.  For a lifer in the military, those are both very sacred traditions that are untouchable, and require, in their minds, a very fundamental respect in response from the general population. 

    Now, you would think that this would be an unrecoverable position for Donald Trump in the mind of this particular conservative who holds these traditions strongly in mind.  But it turns out there is another tradition that he puts above those and to which any threat is sufficient to overcome his distaste for Trump at this point.  It's written in the sacred text called the U.S. Constitution. We call it the Second Amendment.  He has a number of guns and he just bought an AK47 which he keeps in his bedroom in case his house is invaded while he is asleep.  According to the latest rumors I've heard being shared by the conservatives in my area, as soon as Hillary gets into the Oval Office she intends to write up an executive order negating the Second Amendment, and further, that Order will instruct law enforcement to go around and confiscate all the weapons held by these gun toting, Second Amendment true believers, putting those who refuse to relinquish their arms in jail, should they manage to live through the gun battles that undoubtedly will ensue.  So one can see how the term "nasty woman" might have a galvanizing effect in no matter what context it might be uttered during a debate.

    I'm just trying to imagine how to go about reasoning with this guy and his gun worshipping confederates at this point.  My only hope is they don't constitute a majority.  But if they are, and we do get Trump, will there be room for negotiations later on if I attempt to remain critically engaged?

    Sadly, I think you may be correct; our minds may be the only sources for quenching our need for "continual renewal and crisp scenes of undiscovered life forms."
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by dleet on Sat Oct 29, 2016 5:13 am

    http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/LiberalFAQ.htm#Backcarterreagan  I put this site on my toolbar for quick reference because there are so many. I couldn't even make a file.
    I have 4 2nd amendment too, you know the 2/3rds to repeal and 3/4ths of states to sign on, and NO presidential action what so ever is involved and can affect nothing. Civics is not taught in home schooling genres.
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    Re: Paul Chefurka's hierarchy of awareness

    Post by Ren's View on Sat Oct 29, 2016 8:38 am

    dleet wrote:http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/LiberalFAQ.htm#Backcarterreagan  I put this site on my toolbar for quick reference because there are so many. I couldn't even make a file.
    I have 4 2nd amendment too, you know the 2/3rds to repeal and 3/4ths of states to sign on, and NO presidential action what so ever is involved and can affect nothing. Civics is not taught in home schooling genres.

    Everything on that site I already know pretty well myself.  I could have written it.  Knowing it has nothing to do with talking to the true believers who don't enter any of their own doubts about it into their minds, nor allow anyone else to raise them in some sort of critical engagement process, which I recommend no one should begin if they don't come to the table well armed these days. It used to be sufficient if you just knew how to defend yourself in a fistfight. There's a similar site on the fallacies involved in the libertarian cult's views of the world.  They overlap like Venn diagrams, but each has different paradigmatic philosophies to order the information in the true believers' minds.

    So the problem isn't knowledge of these kinds of abstract ideas that people use to make sense of the world (or nonsense of it, if you prefer), it is a problem of achieving communication through a paradigm of ideas that distorts whatever is presented to it into that paradigm. If you understand the paradigm, you can easily anticipate the answers to questions.  I've been told "back atcha" when I suggested that, and that's a fair response, and one that's not easy to counter without a lot of one on one time with facts; and that's mostly with facts that aren't overly abstract.  Forget it if the facts are abstract and require a lot of theoretical physics and other complex math-related science. In that video about brainwashing -- it's somewhere on this site, I'll look for it later -- we watch as the mom, home schooling her young son, creates the anti science paradigm using fear of authoritarian mind control procedures he would have had to deal with in a public school while presenting the more "open-minded" view of creationism.  Another word for this is "framing" the issues, which all propagandists understand, including Thom Hartmann who wrote one of the books on the subject.

    Not all right wingers are home schooled.  Not even all religious right wingers are home schooled.  The ex military conservative I was referring to, though religious, went through and graduated high school right here in Raymond. Then he was programmed by the military to be a patriotic gun-toting machine.  He was at least introduced to civics in a required course in that process. I suspect he may be an example of the majority of today's walking, talking right wingers.  They have a fairly coherent cult-(s)ure, and yes, they'd love to remove the insidious, evil influence of those damn liberal teachers from the educational environment of their children.  They've tried a number of ways of doing that, including getting the funding for public schools funneled into their own faith-based schools.  If you want to view some comforting liberal-view reinforcing explanations, you can always indulge in this: The Brainwashing Of My Dad

     

    Just because people are taught something like civics doesn't mean they are going to understand how it plays out in the more complex arena that adults must figure out while watching the TRiUMPh of spectacle that is modern day politics presented in a medium that's designed and controlled by corporations, for corporations, etc.

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