Monday, August 8, 2016

common useage

Denotation, connotation, definition and common usage are all different for lots of words. How can we keep it all straight? Well, we can't. Language is in a start of flux. Written is slower changing than spoken, and words vary over geography as well. For example, an American in America, being call a Yankee suggests that they are from the north. To the rest of the world, a Yankee is any American. Oh well.

Gluttony is the word that got me thinking. In biblical time, when ever that was- somewhere between 5000 and 600 years ago- gluttony was considered personal choice, and most have not examined this in detail since. We now know that it is epigenetic desire; we have little choice; that is why it is so difficult to lose and keep off weight.  In time of plenty, and of high sugar food sources, we overeat. That is true human nature. That does not mean that we can stop struggling against the weight gain, but rather that we will likely gain, long term so we lose long term. Gain is loss at the same time. Weight gain, life quality and quantity loss. Oh well. Myths are not true, however a general concept may be true.  

Biblical time are a wide range of time. On the start is oral tradition, before written works. The end is  because translation can put such a slant on what something actually says that we may not recognize the original after two translations. It is like the telephone game, the message is so garbled... And if the message was wrong to start with... the world was not created for humans - we are rapidly adapting opportunistic species that has flourished too well and overpopulated... The Co2 levels have been on the rise since the 1950`s, we are overpowering the natural correction of the planet. Oh well, we all just die in the end anyway.

Freethinkers bash religion, and there is a lot to bash and correct the understanding of. Oh well. Atheists do not believe in anything supernatural. Some even attended churches. Companionship and being seen to support the churches is/was important. Just look at the US election. Agnostics just do not care. And when we take things apart, there is some truth many things, and some outright false concepts. So when we start correcting what we think, and start to move forward in a positive way, what do we call ourselves? Humanists? Well perhaps, but even that term has drawbacks... It has been hijacked by groups who offer rituals for dollars. Militant atheist try correct everything that is understood wrong. Positive Psychologists accept spiritual existence and transcendence since these concepts can be powerful driving forces, even if in fact these concepts are hogwash. We are not driven by truth, but rather what we believe. Yet we claim to be truthful without studying, testing and cleaning our thoughts. We humans do not like to take responsibility for being wrong, yet we are and it is so natural. This may be what Socrates meant by 'we do not do wrong willingly.' Yet we have 20% sociopaths. 

Some of us are truth seekers, some are not. Some just rail against whatever, on and on, and never offer an alternative. That is probably the best term yet, a truth seeker, yet humanist manifestos are a collection of truths, more or less... presented in a positive way but without any moral reasons or explanation for each statement, nor defense for each clause.

Suppose we took the truths of the Stoics, Buddhist, Confucius, and modern sciences and mashed them together into a true and correct enmeshment. Note that Christianity and Islam are not in this list; it is doubtful that they would have anything to add. Buddhism has such a superior moral code. But that would be considering what people could be, not what they are. That has been the downfall of all the near socialist states.        


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