Tag Archives | Philosophy

Ping Pong, Taoism and The Big Lebowski

the big lebowski & the long goodbye with an almost full moon  : castro street theater, neon marquis,  san francisco (2013)Guido Mina di Sospiro considers The Big Lebowski to be the greatest movie of all time. His popular essays An Esoteric Take on The Big Lebowski and The Importance of Living: Lin Yutang Meets the Dude – An Esoteric Take on ‘The Big Lebowski,’ Part 2 were both published by disinformation. Now he has a new book out, The Metaphysics of Ping Pong; in that connection he was interviewed by Oliver Benjamin (described by CNN as “the man who founded a religion based on ‘The Big Lebowski'”) for his Dudespaper site:

You’re a big fan of The Big Lebowski and have even contributed an article to our book Lebowski 101 about how the film is influenced by Taoism. Do you feel that Taoism informs the sport of ping pong as well?

Absolutely. And in fact China consistently produces the best players in the world. East Asia, really, remains the place for sublime table tennis: China, Japan and South Korea.

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Chelsea Manning and the Power of Empathy

Chelsea Manning when she was known as Bradley Manning.

Chelsea Manning when she was known as Bradley Manning.

Can there be righteousness without compassion?

Nozomi Hayase writes at Common Dreams:

It is 3 am. Something in me is unsettled and I cannot sleep. Earlier today, the Israeli military intensified its assault on Gaza Strip as a kind of collective punishment of the Palestinians; those vulnerable and marginalized who have been locked up and denied their humanity. After more than 440 air strikes since the beginning of the week, I saw photos of injured and dead men, women and children by the dozens.

I hear a man walking on the street outside my window shouting loudly; “you are a liar, a liar”. In this explosion of anger, I feel his pain. Life does not have to be this way. We can live with dignity and treat each other with respect and kindness. We can do much better.

When we see suffering of others, it upsets and saddens and keeps many of us awake at night.

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Should We Have the Right Not to Work?

This is the logo used for egalitarian/ equality beliefs. Similar to the well known anarchy "A", a capital "E" inscribed in a circle is used in political imagery to show a belief in the equality of different types of people.

This is the logo used for egalitarian/ equality beliefs. Similar to the well known anarchy “A”, a capital “E” inscribed in a circle is used in political imagery to show a belief in the equality of different types of people.

John Danaher examines Andrew Levine’s argument that the right not to work “is entailed by the fundamental principles of liberal egalitarianism.”

via Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technology:

Voltaire once said that “work saves a man from three great evils: boredom, vice and need.” Many people endorse this sentiment. Indeed, the ability to seek and secure paid employment is often viewed as an essential part of a well-lived life. Those who do not work are reminded of the fact. They are said to be missing out on a valuable and fulfilling human experience. The sentiment is so pervasive that some of the foundational documents of international human rights law — including the UN Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR Art.

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Set Your Good Vibe Blasters on High! Liam Wilson of Dillinger Escape Plan Talks Yoga, Meditation, Psychedelics and More on Midwest Real.

Via Midwest Real

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Yoga, meditation, float tanks, psychedelics, philosophy, creativity, freedom nuggets and shit on the water slide of life.

Liam Wilson Liam Wilson is best known for playing bass in the spastic, technical, incredible progressive metal mainstay, Dillinger Escape Plan. If you’re a fan of heavy music and you somehow haven’t heard of them over the course of the last 15 or so years, I don’t even know what to say.

For those in the “not so much into metal” camp, fear not! This man is likely the opposite of what comes to mind when you imagine a guy with millions of head bangs under his belt. He’s a voracious reader, a practitioner of Transcendental Meditation, a yogi, a psychonaut, a student of many philosophies, and a bunch of other things I can guarantee he’d never be comfortable calling himself.

We spent very little time hovering around the surface in this conversation. In fact, I think Liam might have been a little bit excited to be on a show that welcomes fare beyond the discussion of his bass rig (which is glorious, by the way).… Read the rest

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Communing with the Muse, Letting History be its Sexy Self and Coping with Tragedy. With Philosopher, Author and Top-Notch Human, Daniele Bolelli

Via Midwest Real
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Daniele Bolelli“Once you lose attachment to how you want things to be because you realize you don’t control anything, there’s a curiously liberating aspect of that. I’ve always been a control freak, I’ve always felt that if I try hard enough, everyone I love will be kept safe and everything will be okay. Being shown, in such brutal terms, that that’s simply not the way it works, in someways, it messed me up.  I’ve been through hell, but on another level, if you pile up so much tragedy, it either destroys you, or you just start laughing about it. Because at the end of the day, no one gets out alive.” Daniele Bolelli

When a certain type of person achieves monetary success and notoriety, one of their first moves is to cultivate some sort of bullshit persona.  I’m talking a VIP, tinted window, sunglasses on indoors set of behaviors.  What exactly is that?  I’ll tell you, it’s fear.… Read the rest

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Utopia Through Digital Cooperation, Bitcoin and a Little Bit of Gin. Featuring Jeffrey Tucker

PIC: Philafrenzy (PD)

PIC: Philafrenzy (PD)

Via Midwest Real

“You can look at the historical trajectory.  From a technological point of view, we’ve gone to ever-more aggregated collectives… And now, in the last 15 years we’ve seen this great innovation of open source distributed networks and peer-to-peer relationships that distribute power equally… Bitcoin fits into this because it’s the ultimate peer-to-peer monetary system.  You don’t have to depend on some powerful third party… You just take the power on your own and possess it and own it and control your life, and that’s what we all want.” – Jeffrey Tucker

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Kenneth Smith: Self-Knowing

KenIn my archives, I have a large amount of terrific Kenneth Smith emails. This one is an exhilarating journey through the psycho-therapeutic idea of “knowing yourself.” (Smith’s paragraphs are in maroon.)

———-
From: Kenneth R. Smith <kensmith@——.net>
Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2005 15:34:40 -0500
To: cbelan <c——@——.com>
Subject: Re: kernel of thought

on 1/6/05 11:54 PM, c—— at c——@——.com wrote:

Hi Kenneth:

Okay, there is a small rumbling deep in the dark recesses of my mind.   I’ll toss it and trust you to run with it.

Rumblings do set me to running.  Never mind to where or with what.  If it’s not an earthquake then it’s something visceral.

After years of therapy I thought that the goal in knowing oneself well was to apply that knowledge and awareness to a range of life experiences.   But looking back at my life I wonder if there are parts of it (namely that faith issue combined with work life) that one should just barrel through in trust of their principals and not analyze or try to make it match that “logic” side of me.

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Matthew Calarco: Animal Rights Beyond Anthropocentrism

calarcoTraditional contemporary animal rights issues are mostly founded on an assumption that we have solid definitions of what constitutes a “human” and what constitutes an “animal”. What if our definitions of these terms are called into question? What does the animal rights issue look like if we construct our ideas about humanity and animality in different ways? Are our lines dividing humanity and animality solidly drawn, or can they bleed and bend, perhaps be drawn in completely different ways?

Philosophy professor and author of Zoographies Matthew Calarco approaches animal rights from a standpoint of continental philosophy: if our definitions of what a “human” is and what an “animal” is are not firmly set, then our consideration of animal rights, if not all of ethics, can enter entirely different areas the current dialog excludes.

via On Human-Nonhuman Relations:

1) Why do you think is important to employ continental philosophy for the animal question?

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You Have Dormant Primal Powers. This Guy Can Unleash Them.

Via- Midwest Real

“You can blend respectfully and mindfully with your environment as you move. This is a high level of mindfulness requested here. In my opinion, this is a physical manifestation and experience of my spirit… I would even say it’s a spiritual experience of my body.”

Do me a favor- stand up. No problem, right? Now walk around. That’s pretty easy, huh? Next, smash the nearest wad of food into your mouth hole. Isn’t this fun? Ok, sit down, look at the screen, and you’re done! Sound familiar? I know to me it does. I practice that sequence of movements with devoutly religious regularity. I’m going to make a tremendously presumptuous leap and assume that you do the same. Isn’t it sad that the mediocrity of our physical habits is that god damn obvious? Yet, if you’re lucky enough to be a normal-ish, healthy-ish human being you’ve got some serious untapped potential.… Read the rest

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George Carlin’s Guide to Life

Jesus is coming.. Look Busy (George Carlin)We know that George Carlin is a disinfonaut favorite so enjoy Jason Bailey’s curation of Carlin wisdom at Flavorwire:

The late, great comedian, actor, writer, ground-breaker, provocateur, and raconteur George Carlin would have turned 77 years old today, and while that’s not the kind of nice, round number that usually accompanies a tribute, it also doesn’t make a helluva lot of sense to play by the rules when it comes to Carlin. Over his nearly 50-year career, Carlin became one of our most astute political commentators and social critics — and, like the best stand-up comics, his material seldom (if ever) ages. So we’ve assembled some still-relevant words of wisdom from Carlin’s books and stand-up specials, in honor of the brilliant comedian and his truly one-of-a-kind voice.

On language:
“Griddle cakes, pancakes, hot cakes, flapjacks: why are there four names for grilled batter and only one word for love?” (Napalm & Silly Putty, 2002)

On airline announcements:
“About this time, someone is telling you to get on the plane.

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