Monthly Archives: October 2012
In order to become an ignoramus, there are nine basic steps you should take or guidelines you should follow. If you sincerely will follow these, I promise that you won’t learn a thing and will successfully waste your life. Moreover, by adopting these principles and implementing them thoroughly you may bear the honor of becoming the living proof of natural selection (is there any greater honor to have than that? Dare to challenge me). Your name may disappear from the annals of history, but your influence and example, will certainly have left its decisive mark on countless future generations.
Now, let me introduce you to the commandments you should know by heart. Continue reading
Why do you read so much? Why do you like reading? People usually give the following reasons:
– I want to learn more about the world and people around me. Reading is the short-cut to knowledge.
– Reading expands my horizon and challenges me. It makes me smarter and more interesting to talk to.
– Learning from the mistakes of others allows me to avoid committing a mistake of my own.
No doubt, much of what is mentioned here rings true to us. This is because we use the same alibi. And it’s flattering and seems plausible, does it not?
Now, allow me to muddle the water just a little. I have a slight suspicion that the actual reasons for our great delight in the art of reading have much less to do with acquiring new knowledge than with satisfying our basic egotistical urges (this might appear as an artificial dichotomy as the first might include the second and vice versa. Perhaps our greatest egotistical urge is precisely – to acquire knowledge ). Anyway, here’s why. Continue reading
Music (and perhaps art in general) has this wonderful power to uplift one’s mood and change one’s attitude towards life (even if only for a brief moment). In this, it reminds me a little of the promises of religion. Both religion and music actually act more in the realm of human feelings, passions and irrationalities, than in the realms of cold logic, reason and scientific precision. Hence there should be no surprise that many good musicians are actually quite religious folks (with notable exceptions, of course). Bob Marley was a Rastafarian, David Bowie – a Buddhist, Prince – a Jehova’s Witness, Madonna – an esoteric Kabbalist, Michael Jackson – a non-practicing, eclectic Christian of a kind . Being a musician makes you naturally more attuned to the religious lingo and more open to the spiritual experiences of any kind (see for example – http://www.adherents.com/people/100_rock.html). Continue reading
When I was a little child of 3 or 4, I dreamed of growing up. In fact, I could not wait for becoming an adult. I thought to myself, what kind of a man I’ll be, when I have all grown up? What will I look like at 20, 21 or 22? What will I be doing? Naturally, as every other kid, I envisioned my future in rosy colors (and to an extent still do). Continue reading
What would you do if a young American in a black suit approached you on a street and offered you his spiritual advice? Would you take the gamble and return the act of kindness (his invitation for an interaction with you) by sacrificing a couple of minutes of your valuable time? Would you listen to what he has to say and offer? Now, imagine, that this young and ignorant punk were a Mormon, would this make any difference to you? I can answer only for myself. In the past two weeks I have had the pleasure and honor of meeting three youthful Mormon lads – Reeves, Fox and one other guy, whose name I don’t remember (all American – from Washington D.C., Texas, Utah respectively). This is a remarkable accomplishment in itself of which I am quite secretly proud, amazed and amused at the same time. Ever since my early 20s I have had a fervent desire to discuss matters spiritual with the convinced knee-benders, involved shareholders and serious gamers of any self-congratulatory sect or religious enterprise. From then on, I have had many stimulating and boring conversations with all sorts of people – self-proclaimed gurus, notorious avatars, serious meditatiors, legion of New Agers, Micky Mouse Zen-masters, country priests and pastors, monks and nuns, psycho-babblers and herbalists, even with a guy who managed to convince himself that he had a direct communication line with God himself and his heavenly hierarchy. Continue reading
I have skimmed slowly through the pages of a book by German journalist Werner Bartens “Wie das Krankenhaus uns krank macht”. Here’s my two cents on it: Doctors as well as medical scientists all over the world make many mistakes, some of which have lethal consequences. Medics are especially prone to rationalization – they cannot simply admit their mistakes and live happily ever after. Ergo a culture of lies and taboos have cropped over the medical landscape. Some doctors can even get away with a murder (provided it is disguised as a scientific experiment for the benefit of future generations). Continue reading