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  • in reply to: Scientific American article on Bonobos

    nomad
    Participant

    Yes it is an interesting article with some honesty about how extraordinary bonobos are (Jeremy actually quotes from it in par 415 of FREEDOM). In analysing it, the first thing to remember is that, as Jeremy explains in Freedom Essay 2, before we could honestly defend our destructive behaviour, we had to use the false ‘savage instincts’ excuse to explain why we are so competitive and selfish. This is significant because people just loved pointing at chimpanzees and their ruthless competitive behaviour and saying that’s why we are ruthless and competitive as well (see par 514). While De Waal doesn’t get anywhere near the bottom of just what is so special about the bonobos, he does recognise that they might represent a model for what our ancestors were like, and even suggests that is the source of our morality, so that is significant. Despite this though, he still maintains that our destructive behaviour comes from a chimpanzee like aspect of our past. So while he is acknowledging the presence of cooperative insincts in us, he still essentially adheres to the old ‘savage instincts’ explanation for our destructive behaviour.
    As Jeremy explains in chapter 5:6 of FREEDOM, what is really so amazing about the bonobos is that they demonstrate the nurturing based love-indoctrination process that we humans went through. So if we go through his article, you can see De Waal recognises some of the unique aspects of the bonobos that have developed out the love-indoctrination process, such as their peacefulness, their use of sexual appeasement behaviour to overcome aggression, that they are a female led or matriachal society, and other aspects such as females migrating to other groups, but nowhere does he recognize that it is their extraordinary nurturing that lies behind the development of all these traits. (See chapter 5:10 for just how nurturing bonobos are.) In an attempt to explain why bonobos are so unusual De Waal suggests, “The answer may lie in the different ecological environments of bonobos and chimpanzees–such as the abundance and quality of food in the forest. But it is uncertain if such explanations will suffice.” This is known as the ‘Social Ecological Model’ and in Chapter 6:8 Jeremy explains just how inadequate it is in explaining bonobos loving cooperative society and behaviour.
    So yes Marty, De Waal does highlight some of the amazing aspects of bonobos, but in the end he is evading the importance of nurturing (which we had to do until we Jeremy’s real defence for the human condition!), and in De Waal’s essential adherence to the ‘savage instincts’ excuse, he is also evading the truth that our destructive behaviour is psychological in origin.
    Basically I recommend all of chapter 5 of FREEDOM about love indoctrination and how we humans developed our loving moral instincts. The stuff about bonobos, starting at chapter 5:6 is absolutely fascinating.

  • in reply to: Religion vs Human Condition

    nomad
    Participant

    High praise to you Adam with taking your time with this biological understanding, it is obviously highly challenging of your previous and current world-view, and to remain open is admirable. I have read in-depth all of Jeremy’s work, and I know he considers the Bible to be a repository of extremely rare denial-free truth, containing all the truth about human life albeit from a pre-science view, and Christ as one of the greatest prophets that humanity has known. The big difference is that without science religions could only manage our upset (eg. the ten commandments) and give us comfort, but the human condition could not actually be solved. As Tommy points out above, understanding of the source of our upset angry, egocentric and alienated (sinful) behaviour required knowledge of genes and nerves, namely why our conscious mind had to search for knowledge and why our instincts could not help but criticise that search – which is because nerves are insightful, whereas genes are not. With that key piece of knowledge found by Jeremy, the whole human condition ends, we no longer have to be defiant – our angry egocentric and alienated defiance is redundant. So that is why this understanding ‘solves’ the human condition. In terms of the fear of not having an ‘afterlife’, Jeremy writes beautifully about that in his book ‘A Species In Denial’ https://www.humancondition.com/asid-afterlife-explained/?scroll_to=afterlife&scroll_num=1. This information really does represent a huge demystification of our world, and it speaks for itself in terms of whether the logic stacks up, but the preference for more literal interpretations is respected.

  • in reply to: The Science of the Deaf Effect

    nomad
    Participant

    You might be over-thinking it Goldenruler! Of course the terror of the human condition causes us to repress and live in denial of the issue, and that includes blocking out or repressing memories, but the dark cave of denial in which humanity has lived, and the deaf effect ‘protection’ mechanism humans employ, are not produced by not having access to the full potential of our memory. The cave in which humanity has had to imprison itself is a reflection of our commitment to evasion; as Jeremy explains in F essay 30, once you Resign yourself to not being able to reconcile your own and the world’s corrupt state with the ideals, you are committed to living “a haunted existence, dogged by the dark shadow of its imperfect human condition, forever trying to escape it—the result of which is that we have become immensely superficial and artificial; ‘phony’ and ‘fake’, as the resigning adolescents so truthfully described it, and living on the absolute meniscus of life in terms of what we are prepared to look at, feel and consider. We are a profoundly estranged or alienated species, completely blocked-off from the amazing and wonderful real world, and from the truth of our self-corruption that thinking about that beautiful, inspired, natural, soulful world unbearably connects us to”. That is the cause of the deaf effect, and the whole cave existenc e—they are reflections of our psychological terror of the human condition, not a reflection of a mind without adequate memory.

  • in reply to: Songs of resignation and hope

    nomad
    Participant

    Ive just figured out Neil Young’s ‘Sugar Mountain’ is about resignation.
    Sugar Mountain is childhood innocence, but you’ve got to leave, though you dont want to…
    “Oh, to live on Sugar Mountain
    With the barkers and the colored balloons
    You can’t be twenty on Sugar Mountain
    Though you’re thinking that
    You’re leaving there too soon”

    wait, there’s more…
    “Now you say you’re leaving home
    Because you want to be alone
    Isn’t it funny how you feel
    When you’re finding out it’s real?”

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 4 weeks ago by  nomad.
  • in reply to: Songs of resignation and hope

    nomad
    Participant

    Im not a particular fan of Jackson Browne, but ‘Before the Deluge’ is the closest I have seen anyone come to connecting resignation with the real meaning of the ‘flood’ metaphor (see Freedom Essay 43). The chorus also says pretty plainly that one day the human condition was going to be solved!

    Some of them knew pleasure
    And some of them knew pain
    And for some of them it was only the moment that mattered
    And on the brave and crazy wings of youth
    They went flying around in the rain
    And their feathers, once so fine, grew torn and tattered
    And in the end they traded their tired wings
    For the resignation that living brings
    And exchanged love’s bright and fragile glow
    For the glitter and the rouge
    And in a moment they were swept before the deluge

    Let the music keep our spirits high
    Let the buildings keep our children dry
    Let creation reveal its secrets by and by, by and by
    When the light that’s lost within us reaches the sky

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 4 months ago by  nomad.
  • in reply to: The increase in skull size resulting in consciounsess

    nomad
    Participant

    True. But worth bearing in mind that cranial capacity is only an indication of intelligence – albeit a pretty good one. There are other factors such as body size and brain refinement and efficiency, as well as which parts of the brain were actually taking up the space. For example a lot of the Neanderthal brain was devoted to sight and movement, whereas the homo sapien brain has a far larger frontal lobe, which is where the real smarts are.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 8 months ago by  nomad.
  • in reply to: Kids and Teens

    nomad
    Participant

    WTM Email 45 is a really good introduction to Resignation. It would be a great way for adolescents to read about the concept I think. https://www.humancondition.com/wtm-emails/resignation/


  • nomad
    Participant

    Interesting character this Harry Harlow, and he did some really important studies. The impetus for his work with rhesus marques was a desire to see what affect institutionalisation was having on children – and so he developed his experiments with the rhesus marques where he would replace their mother with an inanimate mother made of wire. Not surprisingly, what he found was that the deprived infants had all sorts of psychological issues. And also not surprisingly, he was not like by the mechanistic science mainstream. Jeremy includes in FREEDOM the follow anecdote about Harlow: ‘For some scientists it was hard to accept that monkeys may have feelings. In [the 1979 book] The Human Model…​[authors Harry F.] Harlow and [Clara E.] Mears describe the following strained meeting: “Harlow used the term ‘love’, at which the psychiatrist present countered with the word ‘proximity’. Harlow then shifted to the word ‘affection’, with the psychiatrist again countering with ‘proximity’. Harlow started to simmer, but relented when he realized that the closest the psychiatrist had probably ever come to love was proximity”’
    The best place to read about the effects of depriving children of nurturing is 8:16C of FREEDOM. They are not easy truths, but they are ones we can now face with the full defence of the human condition.

  • in reply to: The new paradigm filtering into the modern psyche

    nomad
    Participant

    Any change takes time for people to get their heads around, whether its driving on another side of the road or whatever. And here we have this most incredible, profound change, where instead having to live in terror of the possibility that we are bad, and having to spend all our time just trying to prove we are good, we can now pop our heads up, because we have the rational understanding that explains why we are good, even though we appeared to be bad. It is a massive turnaround, and humanity is so traumatised, that it is going to take some time for this understanding to penetrate its collective consciousness.

  • in reply to: The new paradigm filtering into the modern psyche

    nomad
    Participant

    The greatest paradox of all time is that our ‘upset’ intellect appeared to be ‘bad’, and our altruistic instincts, appeared to be good. BUT it turns out our intellect is the hero, and our instincts, who in their ignorance, condemned the intellect’s search for knowledge, were the guilty party!
    Regarding the psyche, and new paradigms, the exciting thing is that the explanation of the human condition, i.e. understanding why our intellect was not ‘bad’ to challenge our instincts for management of our lives, renders all our intellect’s defiant behaviour redundant. In other words, in the absence of understanding why we had to search for knowledge, we could only defy the criticism from our instincts by becoming angry, egocentric and alienated, and so it follows that with that understanding we no longer have to resort to that defiant behaviour. What a paradigm shift for humanity!
    I would be really intersted, rmessing, in your thoughts on Chapter 2 of the little booklet Transform Your Life. It wonderfully describes how what appeared to be ‘bad’ turns out to be good, and vice versa, and how in the end, the two are reconciled! I would love to know what you think.

  • in reply to: Discoveries

    nomad
    Participant

    Hi Nigel, there is so much we all have inside us about the human condition. We are all full of selfishness and ‘corruption’ and all the rest of it. But the more I absorb this wonderful work, the more I am drawn to chapter 9 of Freedom. And what I take out of that, is that I can leave all that stuff alone because I know it is dealt with. And that freedom is so wonderful. Of course, we have to be honest about it (which you certainly are being), but then its just ‘put it all in a metaphorical suitcase and chuck it over your shoulder as dealt with!’ And I can use all of that extra space in my being to just being helpful, and thinking seriously about this information and how to get it out into the world. It doesnt matter who I am anymore, that is the beauty of it all – its just, ‘lets get on with this job’.

  • in reply to: The increase in skull size resulting in consciounsess

    nomad
    Participant

    As you say Nigel, a very interesting question. I would agree that there are other animals that are self-aware. For example, science uses the so called ‘mirror test’, whereby they anaesthetise an animal, put a mark on it on its back or somewhere that it can’t see, and then put the animal in front of a mirror so that it can now see the mark, and they note whether the animal then reaches around on its body where the mark is. I don’t know how conclusive that is of self-awareness, but it is certainly suggestive of self-awareness, and only a few species pass it, most of them great apes, but also dolphin and orcas.
    Regarding consciousness, I think the key here is Jeremy’s definition (from par 638 of F), which is that it “is the ability to understand the relationship of events sufficiently well to effectively manage and manipulate those events”. So while I agree that there is a continuum of intelligence, and that whales and elephants in particular are relatively conscious (and amazingly sensitive), I don’t think they are conscious enough of how events are related to begin managing them to the extent that humans can, and even as bonobos are beginning to. And its that level of consciousness that is then in a position to begin challenging the instincts for the day to day management of our lives, which as we now know, is what caused the whole ‘human condition’ to arise. If other animals were ‘conscious’ to the same extent we are, then it is unavoidable that they would all be suffering their own version of the human condition, because we know the nerve based learning system and gene based one have to come into conflict when the intellect starts to exert itself because the gene based system is ignorant of the nerves need to understand. That logic is pretty inescapable.
    The whole discussion in chapter 7 of FREEDOM about why other animals haven’t become conscious (of how events are related to be able to manipulate those events), which is because their circumstances haven’t allowed nurturing to develop in order to liberate consciousness, is obviously very on-point, not to mention incredibly interesting.

  • in reply to: Are you open-minded to reincarnation?

    nomad
    Participant

    Brad, reincarnation is an interesting question, but as with so many other questions, the real issue that we needed to resolve first, was the human condition – why are we so selfish, egocentric and alienated. Once that is solved (and it is this explanation of the human condition that Jeremy Griffith presents), and our terrible, all-encompassing insecurity and preoccupation with our self-worth can end, then we will be in a position to cleanly think about so many other aspects of our existence. But it really is a case of first things first. There is a very simple presentation of Jeremy’s core idea in video #3 on the top of the homepage that I would recommend you watch if you have not already. Anyway, thanks for the comment Brad.

  • in reply to: Welcome to the General Discussion forum

    nomad
    Participant

    Thanks Evelien. I can follow that logic. Certainly people have tried to explain the various mysteries of life, and counter the limitations of mechanistic science, but without the key explanation to why we humans are egocentric and selfish, not loving and selfless, they have never been able to really get to the bottom of anything. I think it is very important to realise that it is this fundamental issue that Jeremy is dealing with here — the question of why humans are not ideal; why we are selfish and aggressive and egocentric, when we should be loving and cooperative. This is THE fundamental question about being human. Everything else is just dodging the issue. Religions are totally based on recognising it, and they call it ‘the fall’ etc. As Verhulst and Bolk etc recognise, there have been all sorts of side issues to work out, but it is very very important to realise that it is this central issue in all our lives that Jeremy’s work deals with, and that to really answer all those other questions about neoteny, ADHD, and why science has been mechanistic, humanity needed to answer this central question first.
    So that is what is so special about Jeremy’s work. It finally explains the real psychological answer to why we are the way we are. And not the ridiculous excuse that we are selfish and aggressive because we have ‘savage instincts’, but the real explanation that admits that our condition is psychological! Its all there in the first 4 Video Essays!
    Obviously if it is the true answer to this question of questions, then all sorts of other mysteries will now easily make sense. As I’ve said, we can now easily explain why science has had to be mechanistic (see chapter 2.4 of FREEDOM); and why humans are so neotenised (see chapter 5 of F); and what ADHD really is, and why there is an epidemic of ADHD and autism sweeping the world (chapter 8:16B of F).
    Regarding reincarnation, Jeremy explains in para 840 of F that it’s hard for us to imagine how loving and empathetic humans once were but the emotion of love would have been so powerful that everyone would have been ‘near to us’ and remained ‘near to us’ after they died. So in earlier times although people died physically, their entire spirit lived on with us. Love and feeling and emotion and togetherness was everywhere and in everyone. It is only in more recent times that humans have become much more alienated and disconnected from our all-sensitive and loving soul, and thus needing to believe in a physical ‘afterlife’. But now that it is possible to understand the human condition and that we are actually good and not bad, in fact a profound part of the development of order of matter on Earth, it can be understood that each and every human life is extraordinarily significant and meaningful and that their efforts and real essence of their being do carry on and endure. To quote Jeremy from his 2003 book A Species in Denial regarding afterlife, ‘The spirit of humans, the enormous courage that they have exhibited on the journey to enlightenment through the incredible darkness, loneliness and hardship of having to live in denial, lives on in each of us and is carried on in all subsequent generations.’ You can read the full section on ‘afterlife’ here: https://www.humancondition.com/asid-afterlife-explained
    So there is a lot to think about there Evelien, but I do hope you can find the time to quietly watch those first 4 videos, because you will quickly see that it does all make sense at last.

  • in reply to: Welcome to the General Discussion forum

    nomad
    Participant

    Hi Evelien, I too spent a lot of time exploring ‘anti-mechanistic’ thinkers before I found Griffith’s work. I am familiar with Goethe of course, but had to look up Paul Levy and I won’t pretend that I have a real understanding of Verhulst apart from another cursory search. What I think I can say though, is that a lot of people have been intuitively aware that mechanistic science was not presenting the whole truth. The following passage from chapter 2:12 of FREEDOM, quotes the Templeton Prize winner Charles Birch who was Jeremy’s professor of biology at Sydney University, who expressed this view. He said, ‘[mechanistic] science can’t deal with subjectivity [the issue of our psychologically distressed condition]…what we were all taught in universities is pretty much a dead end’ (from recording of Birch’s 1993 World Transformation Movement Open Day address). He also perceived the stultifying, ‘truth’-‘prevent[ing]’ effects of dishonest, denial-based, mechanistic thinking when he said, ‘Biology has not made any real advance since Darwin’, and, some 10 years later, that ‘the traditional framework of thinking in science is not adequate for solving the really hard problems’, with the ‘hard[est] problem’ of all for truth-avoiding thinking to solve being the all-important issue of our psychologically distressed human condition. Yes, as Birch concluded, ‘Biology right now awaits its Einstein in the realm of consciousness studies’ .”
    The key to point to keep in mind though, is that while Jeremy’s work points out and explains what has been lacking in mechanistic science, it actually defends it. Just as his explanation of the human condition defends selfishness and egocentricity as being necessary in the search for knowledge, so does his work ultimately defend mechanistic science. As he says, the job of science was to find the pieces of the puzzle while not looking at the bigger picture, because until we found the defence for our upset behaviour, the bigger picture was unfairly condemning. And that’s what changes everything when trying to introduce this new paradigm to other people – it doesn’t criticise people, it defends them! Which isn’t to say it isn’t a huge change, and you wont receive some ‘malignant responses’, but the fact that this information defends mechanistic science (and ultimately all humans) can’t be emphasised enough. You will also find it completely accountable. At anytime, you can run through what is actually pretty simple logic, and that is a huge reassurance.
    I am thinking that with your interest in holistic science, you will particularly appreciate Freedom Essay 25: ‘The truthful biology of life’. Actually you will find all of the essays in that section ‘The other key biological explanations’ very interesting ie Freedom Essay 21: ‘How we acquired our altruistic moral conscience’, 22: ‘Fossil discoveries evidence our nurtured origins’, 23: ‘Integrative Meaning or ‘God’’, 24, ‘How did consciousness emerge?’ and 25: ‘The truthful biology of life’.
    Good luck with it all Evelien, but do take you time. There is a LOT to absorb, and if my journey is anything to go by, it does take time for your deeper self to come to terms with what is on offer here; patience is very important.

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