The Virtual Gardens of Social Media

I exist on Facebook. I do not exist on any of the other social media sites (twitter, instagram, snapchat, etc… )—mainly because I have avoided getting a smart phone.

In any case, I find Facebook to be a really useful tool.

I like it.

I find out about various events and I use it as an information feed about various stuff going on in the world. Yes, there can be lots of memes and spam—but I’ve diligently spent time removing such things from my newsfeed—whether that meant hiding particular sources of information or removing particular people from appearing in my feed.

In other words, I weed my feed on a regular basis.

Facebook is, in my view, a kind of virtual garden. It is a place where stuff comes into existence, grows (or doesn’t if people don’t comment and build upon it), and then fades—only to be replaced by new stuff.

cybergarden

It is a virtual environment. It is not reality—not even close. It is clearly a construct, and it is always under the control of a private group who can manipulate it at will (See the latest facebook manipulation of users’ feeds..). Despite all of this—I find myself at home on it, and I will continue to use it as long as it is useful.

Not all of my friends see it that way. I have a number of friends who have left facebook. Some of them did so because of privacy concerns—which are legit. I mean, this useful venn diagram speaks the truth…

privacy1

Others, however, have talked about leaving facebook because of the content of their news feed. They’ve talked about how they don’t like all the negativity and conflict.  And, indeed, if you have certain people on your friends list who are assholes, your feed can become an ongoing list of reasons why to avoid certain humans.

But it doesn’t have to be like that.  Facebook is not reality.  It does not show you what reality is like–it merely shows you how a collection of people want to construct and shape their own reality.

This collection of people form the virtual environment.  But we have the power to shape this environment.  Although we do not have absolute power in shaping it, we do have powerful abilities if we just have the will to use them.

This is why I think of my facebook as a garden.  And my feed is lot like my own garden.

garden

It can be somewhat wild, but it is full of healthy and fruitful interactions.  Sometimes weeds get into it–or their are infections that spread to parts–but careful pruning and the application of smart rules of conduct keep it growing and productive.

This is also partially why I still like my facebook–because it is a garden–and I like working in my garden.

This metaphor–and that’s all it is–does not accurately describe everyone’s interaction with FB, of course, and I make no claims that it does.  All I would say is that FB–like most other social media technologies–is a kind of environment.  It is a space filled with many different subjects and agents pushing their own conscious and unconscious agendas.  Some of these will be in conflict, while others will be in harmony.  For me, it’s important to maintain a certain level of basic structural harmony, even if I let low level conflicts exist within this controlled space.

So–if you are avoiding facebook because you don’t like how the content is–then know that you can change it–but it does require work.   Gardens do not take care of themselves–whether physical or virtual

Posted in Sociality | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

20 grams of protein

A post about food again–one that I meant to write about 2 months ago–but didn’t have time to.

This post actually came out of a kind of experiment I did to myself as I decided to eat something new.

In specific, I was at the store buying a bunch of Clif Bars–and I saw that there were these clif “builder” bars with 20gm’s of protein in them.

I’m a protein fan.  When I want to lose weight, I cut out most extraneous carbs and focus mostly on protein and fruits/vegies (there are carbs in there–but mostly “fibrous” carbs that take longer to digest)–and that tends to work with me to slowly lower my weight.  This kind of “dieting” tends to happen every spring (late-ish in spriing)–and this long winter had made my desire to shed some of my body’s previously sensible decisions to create extra insulation so that I didn’t freeze to death even more prominent in my mind.

So I thought–heck–let’s try one of these builder bars.  This is the one I got:

c26-B000GPRZSO-1-l

I like chocolate-mint flavored stuff and I thought it might not be so bad.

Taste-wise–it wasn’t bad–at least not initially.  It was chewy and dense–but I expected as much.  It did tend to leave me with a strange–what I would describe as “chemically”–aftertaste–but that’s common with a lot of food products these days–especially processed ones.

Later, however, I didn’t feel so well.  My body was not particularly happy with me–it just felt off.  Not quite a Mc. Tummy Ache–but something like that..   I’ve come to recognize this feeling–and it usually occurs when I eat something heavily processed.  I’m pretty sure I felt it when I was younger and ate processed foods–but it wasn’t as strong or I just wasn’t paying as much attention.

Now that I’m older–I listen to my body–and it wasn’t that happy.

In contrast, I should note, I have long eaten an equivalent 20 grams of protein for lunch–and that was in the form of a can or sardines in mustard sauce.    This thing….

811xWw2A1iL

I had never had sardines from cans until a couple of summers ago when I was looking for new sources of protein and decided that maybe something like canned tuna would be good.  These sardines were in the same aisle–and so I bought some.

I ended up really liking them and also discovering that sardines are not endangered like other fish species and that the harvest of them is a lot better than in most other cases.

Now–I should note that this is also a kind of processed food, but the processing is different.  It is generally just a combination of a few ingredients and cooking.

Eating sardines also never gave me any kind of weird digestive signal.  It was just food to me.

And I think that’s what I’m getting at here.

My body likes food.  It doesn’t really like “food products,” however.

Looking at the ingredients and nutrition facts of these two different products makes for an interesting comparison:
For the Clif Chocolate Mint Builder Bar:

WMB11_1355_-Builders_CMSo.. 20 gms of protein, 31gms of carbs, 8 gms of fat.  That’s not too bad.

In terms of specific vitamins and minerals: 100% of Vit C, 25% of Calcium, 25% of Iron… all of which is also good.
In terms of the specific scientific nutrients, it looks like something good to eat.

However–when you look at the ingredients.. things change a bit..

Ingredients: Soy Protein Isolate, Beet Juice Concentrate, Organic Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Dried Cane Syrup, Palm Kernel Oil, Unsweetened Chocolate, Organic Rolled Oats, Cocoa, Organic Soy Protein Concentrate, Organic Sunflower Oil, Vegetable Glycerin, Natural Flavors, Organic Almonds, Rice Starch, Cane Syrup, Inulin (Chicory Extract), Cocoa Butter, Organic Flaxseed, Organic Oat Fiber, Soy Lecithin, Salt, Colored with Beet Powder, Carnauba Wax.

Its not that these ingredients are all horrible–in fact, there are a lot of organic ingredients in there.  The fact that they are organic is a good thing.

However–the combination of these things together and the way they are combined–especially the “Soy protein Isolate” and “Soy Protein concentrate,”–this is not how our body evolved to work.

It evolved to eat foods–and foods were usually weird mixtures of compounds and structures—rather than extracts and isolates.

In comparison–here is the nutritional information for my sardines:

sardinesnutrition

It has a similar amount of the main components–namely 21gms of protein, 9gms of fat, but only 5gms of carbs.  Similarly, it has 50% of calcium and 25% of Iron, but only 6% of Vitamin C.

This makes sense in that fish don’t usually contain any vitamin C in them–and the vitamin C that is there is most likely from the mustard sauce added to it.

In terms of the ingredients–they are a lot simpler:

Ingredients:  Sardines, Mustard, Water, Vinegar, Soy Bean Oil, Corn Flour, Turmeric, Salt.

These ingredients are relatively “old” in the sense that you could produce and consume them a thousand years ago–and people did.

In the end–my body seems to consider the sardines to be food–and the Clif Builder Bar to be something else–and that’s why I’m sticking with my sardines.   I don’t begrudge anyone their clif bars–far from it–but I would tell people to listen to their bodies and pay attention to how they feel after eating various things.  We live in an age where there are lots of things that can be purchased and consumed that the human body has never eaten before–and the variety of such things has grown tremendously over the last 30 years—as has the growing, worldwide level of obesity (note–one should be careful of those statistics, however, as they rely upon the BMI index–and that number is not nec. the most accurate way to determine real health-damaging weight levels.. ).

So think about what you eat–but listen to your body when you eat.. as it will probably try to tell you stuff..

Posted in Eating & Food | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Time and change

Although I tend to be a rather temperamentally conservative/cautious guy by nature (do not mistake this for political conservatism or I’ll eat you alive..), I do appreciate change–and especially the cyclic change in nature contrasted with the conscious progressive change that humans can effect.

IMG_0931

For example–this was our front yard on March 11th of this year.  We had a long winter that was only just beginning to think about leaving us at this point.. but the appearance of something other than whiteness at this stage was remarkably welcome.

In the foreground–off to the right, you can see the three raised garden boxes that I grow food in for my family.  I do this because I’ve discovered I love growing food–and that shouldn’t be that surprising to me–considering that both my mom and my paternal grandfather liked to keep gardens–although theirs were more flower oriented and geared towards victorian styles.

In any case–this is the same spot by May 4th of this year.

IMG_0935

What you can see–beyond the obvious disappearance of the snow (FINALLY)– is that I have fashioned a 4th garden box for food (I needed a separate spot for peppers after the tomatoes totally shaded them out last year..).  In front of those boxes, there was also a rather extensive hole (pictured below) where a half-dead, entirely ugly ground evergreen bush/tangle monstrosity had been removed.

IMG_0936What was not so fun about taking this monstrosity out was that it’s root structure was fairly deeply embedded into the ground and this ground was composed almost entirely of rocks that the previous owners had put in underneath it.

Digging that up was terrible–it took hours and many, many wheelbarrows full of rocks are now in the backyard.

In any case–the front yard had been even further changed up through just yesterday, as seen here:
IMG_0948

As you can see–all of the garden boxes have migrated to their new–hopefully permanent spots on the lawn.  In addition, I’ve tarped off (with super not-playing-around weed barrier tarp..) the space between the boxes and covered it with recycled rubber tiles to make mowing (that hated activity) less bothersome and to improve the accessibility to the boxes.

IMG_0953

In terms of food, I’ve planted pole beans with the zucchini in the top right, then tomatoes, cucumbers (with trellises to climb), borage, and a few peppers at bottom right.  In the top left, I’ve planted mostly tomatoes, some basil,some borage, and a leftover pepper, while in the bottom left, it’s entirely hot peppers (Jalepeno, Serrano, Hot Banana, Fajita, and a Carolina Reaper) with oregano interspersed amongst them.

All of this endeavor took some time–and it entails (as seen below) some reseeding of grass where two of the garden boxes used to be located.

IMG_0954

Change. A lot of it.

Some of it through no work of my own, but a lot of it through conscious effort.  This is what it can create and build.

This is also where I find my happiness… working in the world and making it better for my family and friends.

Posted in Eating & Food, Nature | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Three months of my life…

It’s been nearly 3 months since my last post–but there are reasons.  Any reader of this blog will note the rather seasonal and sporadic nature of my posts.

A brief analysis with a look at the calendar might lead one to suspect that I was a teacher of some kind–as I tend to disappear late in what would be American Semesters.

Such is the case.

However–such time is well spent–as every semester I learn much.  My day job is spent teaching engineers how to write, present, and generally how to think.   This entails forcing them to do an extended technical research project on a subject of their choosing (with guidance and selective vetoing by me..).

The results of this past semester were, with but a few exceptions, rather solid.  I will list the topics below from my 65 students.  Looking through them, you’ll see that they range over a wide variety of topics–which makes evaluating them both a tad stressful, but also rewarding.
borg
It also lets my true self (pictured to the right) assimilate a new semester’s worth of technological development as researched and reported by my new crop of minions—er.. students.   It is, actually, fascinating to see what they come up with and to watch the steady progression of certain kinds of technologies–to see what used to be considered “totally not ready” become utterly commonplace, while other technologies that seemed like they were gonna become the next big thing–fade away.

Without any further ado, this is where I’ve been for the past 3 months:

1. Analysis of Light Scattering Techniques in Thin-Film Solar Cells: A Comparisonn of Spherical Metallic Nanoparticles and Textured Substrates

2. Analysis of Biomaterials Used in Tissue Engineered Skin

3. A Comparison between ODM and AE Analysis for Wind Turbine Gearbox Early Defect Detection

4. An Analysis of Multimodal Sensor-Networked In-Home Healthcare Systems

5. Electro-chromic Windows: Solving the Flaws of Slow Response Time to Changing Outdoor and Indoor Conditions and Poor Visual Clarity

6. Graphene as a Potential Alternative to Reverse Osmosis Membrane Filtration

7. An Analysis of Graphene Electrode for Fully Flexible and Transparent Piezoelectric Zinc Oxide Nanogenerators.

8. Passive vs. Active Safety Systems in Nuclear Power Plants

9. Organic Light Emitting Diodes Manufacturing Techniques for Mass Production: A comparison of Vacuum Thermal Evaporation, Organic Vapor Phase Deposition, and Inkjet Printing

10. A Comparison of the Effectiveness of Two Triage Methods to Decrease the Wait Time in Hospital Emergency Departments.

11. A Recommendation for Implementing a Human Factors Application in the Automotive Industry: An Analysis of Employee Cost Benefits and the Comparison between Lifts and Pulleys..

12. An Evaluation of Differing Void Shapes Used in Biaxial Hollow Concrete Slabs

13. Corrosion Mitigation in Molten Salt Nuclear Reactors–Recommendations for the Focus of Continuing Research

14. An Analysis of the Cognitive Human-Robot Interaction of the Exoskeleton Robot in Rehabilitation

15. A Recommendation for Rigid Fixation of Soft Tissue Grafts in ACL Reconstruction: A Comparative Analysis..

16. An Analysis of Recycling Polymers Through Dissolution and Mechanical Recycling

17. An Analysis on Effective, Non-invasive Diagnostic Methods for Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome (CECS)

18. Attenuation of Cancer Metastasis: Using CAM Inhibitors to Artificially Alter Cellular Adhesion

19. Use of Pedicle Screws in posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion: Adjusting Screw Characteristics to Increase Spinal Fusion Rate and Decrease Fixation-Related Complications

20.A Recommendation for Polychlorinated Biphenyl (PCB) Remediation: An Analysis between using Landfills and Bioremediation to Remove PCBs from the Environment.

21. A Recommendation for the Mitigation of Inset Residue: An Analytical Comparison between Chemical Coatings, Krueger Flaps, and TKS Systems

22. Mitigating Memory Bottlenecks in Mobile System Architectures

23. Quick Detection Methods for Carbapenem Resistant Enterobacteriaceae: A Comparison of Real-Time PCR, MALDI-TOF MS, and Carba NP

24. A Recommendation of a Technique to Minimize Blood Loss during Arthroplasty Surgeries

25. An Analysis of Current Aviation Training Policy and Licensure Requirements on Pilot’s Weather-RElated Decision Making Skills

26. Variable Speed Limits to Reduce Freeway Congestion: An Analysis of Three Case Studies to Propose the Optimal VSL Implementation Strategies for U.S. Freeways

27. The Financial Barriers of Implementing Electronic Health Records in Primary Care Practices in the United States

28. A Recommendation of Taillight Following Techniques used in Low Light Conditions by Autonomous Cars

29. A Recommendation for Long Bone Femur Analogous Materials for the Validation of Human and Animal Bone Tissue Mechanical Testing: An Analytical Comparison between the use of Polyurethane Foams and Fiber-reinforced Epoxies.

30. Alternatives for Toxic and Scarce Materials in Traditional Solar Cells: A Comparison between Copper Zinc Tin Sulphide, Quaternary I-III-IV2-V4 Phosphide, and Dye-sensitized Solar Cells

31. Conditions for Maximizing Pollutant Removal in Bioswales During the Conveyance of Stormwater Runoff in Small Urban Watersheds

32. Improving Capacity Constraints using Variable message Signs: A Comparison between Variable Speed Limits and Dynamic Route Guidance

33. An Analysis of Sulfur Removal Techniques for Coal-Fired Power Plant

34. Mitigating Side-Channel Attacks in Asymmetric Encryption Systems

35. Hydraulic Fracturing Wastewater Treatment Procedures for Total Dissolved Solids

36. Feasibility of Using Crumb Rubber in Extensive Green Roof Substrate Layers

37. Energy Consumption Reduction Methods of Sea Water Reverse Osmosis Desalination

38. Analysis of Low Cost Model-Based Eye Gaze Systems as an Effective form of Alternative Communication for Physically Disabled People

39. Battery Safety Improvements for Electric Vehicles: Analysis of Lithium-ion Battery Safety Challenges in electric Vehicle Collisions

40. A Recommendation for Anaerobic Digestion of Thin Stillage for Ethanol Production

41. Modifying Turbine Spacing and Array Geometry in the Optimization of Tidal Power Plants

42. Resolving the Uncertainty of Receiving Annual Mammograms: A Comparison between the United Kingdom Ae Trial and the National Canadian Breast Screening Study.

43. Suitability and Characteristic Evaluation of Major Type High-speed Internal permanent Magnet Synchronous Machines for Electric Vehicle Applications

44. Water-Free Dust Cleaning Techniques for Desert Photovoltaic Solar Power Arrays

45. Recommendation for Ergonomic Haptic Gloves for Virtual Environment Manipulation

46. A Recommendation for Illumination Invariance for Facial Recognition in Surveillance Cameras: An Analytical Comparison between Preprocessing, Infrared Re-illumination, and Illumination Invariant Feature Extraction

47. Cost Barriers to Implementation of Electronic health Records for Primary Care Physicians and Recommendations to Address Them

48. An Analysis of the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of Linux Platform on the Server Side

49. A Recommendation for Roundabout Modification due to Bicycle Safety: A Comparison between Integrated and Separated Bicycle Placement

50. Research into the Current Limitations of Metal Hydride Storage Systems in Light-duty Vehicle Applications

51. Research on Light Duty Diesel Engines and Nitrous Oxide Exhaust after-treatment Methods in the Passenger Vehicle Market

52. An Analysis of Techniques to Reduce Retained Foreign Objects After Surgery

53. An Analysis of Power Minimization for Location-based Services in Mobile Phones

54. Analysis of Free Air Cooling to Reduce Data Center Energy Consumption

55. Viability of Carbon Fiber in the Automotive Industry to Increase Fuel Efficiency: A Comparison Between Renewable and Recyclable Precursors

56. Research on the prevention of fire in NYC tunnels through their ventilation systems

57. Lowering Operating Temperatures in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells for Possible Implementation in micro Combined Heating Processess

58. A Recommendation for an Alternative Thermal Barrier Coating for Advanced Gas Turbine Applications

59. RFID Technology in Healthcare: Security Risks and Solutions

60. A Recommendation for Active Noise Reduction Headsets for Flight Applications in the Military: An Analytical Comparison of Feedforward and Feedback Control Systems for Improved Communication and Noise Reduction]

61. Advanced Methods of Regeneration of Spent Pickling Solutions from Steel Processing: A Comparison between Membrane Distillation and Diffusion Dialysis

62. Neutron Irradiation Reduction through Comparison of Shielding Materials for the Traveling Wave Reactor

63. Comparison of Compressed Air And Pumped Hydro Energy Storage Methods for Grid Stabilization of Photovoltaic Intermittency

64. A Recommendation for an Implantable Treatment Option for Sensorineural Hearing Loss: A Comparison between Cochlear Implants, Esteem brand Middle Ear Implants, and Bone-Conducted Ultrasound Hearing Aids

65. Comparison of the Tokamak and Stellarator as First Generation Fusion Power Devices

—————–
Hopefully more posts will follow this one shortly.. but I wanted to get the ball rolling again..

Posted in Human Nature and Mind, Identity, Writing and Communication | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Winterdämmerung 2014

The Twilight of the Winter has finally arrived here in Wisconsin.  It has been a long winter, and a cold one at that.  Unlike the rest of the world that has been enduring a hotter than average winter….as seen below…

landoceanjan2014

.. we here in the midwest and eastern US have been party to the literal visitation of the North Pole to our area on at least three separate occasions–go look up polar vortex –when it decided to migrate down from Baffin island to come visit us.

Anyway.. this shit appears to be done in any serious sense.  Yes, it snowed this morning–but it’s now sunny and tomorrow will be above freezing again and it looks to stay there.

The Twilight of the Winter has begun.

Visually, the results can be seen in the ongoing melt that has commenced–something that was notoriously absent for the 3 solid months of temperatures not even close to the freezing point. Here is the front of our house… to the left…

IMG_0930

and to the right….

IMG_0931

Note the patches of greenery and darkness on the ground.

This is amazing stuff when you’ve only seen whiteness for nearly 100 days.

Although Spring has not yet arrived, Winter is receding.. and we have survived it.

If just barely…

 

 

Posted in Nature | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Grokking feelings, feeling music…

I’m certainly a weird one.

Let me explain.

I don’t really feel things.

Or at least, the way in which I feel things appears to be different than most–more like the vast majority–of the people I know.  In specific, when most people interact with each other, there is an ongoing communication of emotional states that is conveyed along with any kind of verbal information through body language, tone, facial expressions, volume, etc.

In a nutshell-with a lot of people–when you say something to another person and you are attempting to “connect” with them in some way–whether to persuade you of a point–to bond with them–to relate an experience–a good portion of the “meaning” in this conversation/communication is intended to be of an emotional nature–i.e. that the person will then “feel” the way you do in some manner.

The amount of this kind of communication that is consciously controlled by the people involved varies, of course, with some people being much more self-aware on this score than others.  This kind of emotional connection can often even the entire point of holding such conversations for many people.  The entire–or perhaps maybe just the primary–intent of communication is, for them, focused on this kind of emotional translation and transferral.

Now it need not be always uni-directional–it can also just be a kind of mutual interaction–the sharing of emotional information with each other.

This is what I’m talking about–and it is something that I’m often atrocious at, because when I’m communicating with people–this kind of intent is usually absent from my mind.

I don’t feel conversations.

Instead–they are almost always just factually driven and they are an attempt by my mind to understand reality in a fairly objective sense.

Now–despite this natural proclivity of mine in my approach towards communication–I have at least become smart enough over the years to recognize that my approach to communication is the abnormal one.   I have also recognized that there is truly SIGNIFICANT information that is conveyed in this kind of emotional transferral–and to ignore that is not only limiting to understanding–it’s downright stupid.

Now–I’m not sure when this recognition became a fully conscious thought.  I know that I learned as a teenager to create various masks to represent myself to others to help make communication easier.  This was most likely a defensive reaction though.. and it was not without its problems–as it was primarily reactionary and without forethought.

Then–in my twenties–I was in a relationship that I like to think of as emotional bootcamp.  It started off well, but ended up being amazingly stressful and destructive towards my identity.  But, perhaps that destruction was necessary for me to realize that a chest full of masks was not a healthy way to go through life–and that I did have a core identity that I would not ever again deny.

Towards the end of my twenties, I came across MBTI type of stuff–and it was here, I believe, that I first started to acquire a kind of language and perspective to think about these things.  Now the MBTI system, in my view, is not ever going to be an accurate representation of the totality of reality or human behavior.  Not at all.  But it was a step towards letting me understand how my brain and consciousness approached the world in a certain way–and that others did so in different ways–and that to truly understand my reality, I would need to focus and learn about how these different approaches interacted and manifested in human society.

So–it was from that point on (although it was based on stuff I had also learned in emotional boot camp) that I really paid more attention to how to interpret and understand human communication–and to not just focus on the specific words and language that people used–but also to try to get beneath to understand the emotional stances and foundations from which people acted.  To create better models and simulations of how other people in my mind.

That was over a decade ago.

In that time, I’ve become a lot better at communication with others, and I think my friends would say that I’m pretty good at communication.  At the very least, I’m really persistent at it–and always willing to go further to understand something and to revise my understanding with new data–rather than trying to think that I’ve ever achieved some sort of permanent and absolute knowledge of the GRAND STATE OF THINGS.

But I still don’t feel these feelings that people often see at the heart of communication.

Instead–I grok them.  I observe how people are acting, what they’re saying, what their history is–and from these perceptions, I then reason out–using accumulated past experience and reflection–what might be going on.

This is a conscious effort–at least at first–and it is a synthetic one–in that I bring a lot of different aspects together and try to integrate it into a model that I can then evaluate.

But I don’t feel the model.

I know the model.

Because of this–I sometimes get things horribly, horribly wrong, and my errors are also compounded by the fact that while I don’t often consciously feel things–I do ACTUALLY have feelings–but they tend to arrive much later in my experiences–and their influence is usually more like a subtle, but steady shading of my thought processes.

I grok feelings.

At least, most of the time.

Perhaps this will give those who know me and read this a better sense of my actions.  Perhaps others who are like me in some way will see this in themselves.

In any case, this whole realization didn’t really coalesce until I also then realized that there are places where I do feel things. Where feelings are natural and even primary for me.

One such place is listening to music.  More than any other activity, listening to music can tap into my emotions and make me feel things without there being any conscious deliberation or analysis.   Songs can bring tears to my eyes, whereas other major emotional events–say like losing a job or getting hurt–don’t even come close to provoking sadness  or any other kind of emotional response.

I recognized more of the truth in this when I reflected on the fact that I really don’t care to analyze music or to hash out the different and fine points of genres or songs.

With songs–I like them or I do not.  Trying to convince me that I should or shouldn’t like something because of facts about the song–that seems utterly and fundamentally foreign to me.

I could give a rat’s ass about those things.  I like songs because I like them.

I like them because they make me feel things.

Posted in Human Nature and Mind, Identity, Sociality, Uncategorized, Writing and Communication | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Creation of Worlds

Where do you create your worlds?

I create mine on the inside.

Within me.

Millions and billions of them.

multiverse1

I have always done this–it always came naturally–and part of me–despite knowing the differences between how people see and experience the world (see the numerous and detailed posts here about mbti etc…), it had not occurred to me that others didn’t do this with ease.

I mean–how else would you just solve certain problems and work through certain stuff.

But that’s just the point..


The act of creation is something that is not the same for people.  How people create, with which materials, and where they do so are particular to the person and to forget this is to become lazy and to forget the diversity that is present throughout humanity.
creation

This has been clear to me for a long time, especially since I have so many artistic friends–in particular musicians–who are constantly creating new stuff.

I am entirely “non-artistic” though.. I don’t make music and I have never wanted to–I’ve never wanted to be a rock star.

This doesn’t necessarily mean I am not creative, however.  Instead, my creativity lies in different places–in making all kinds of spaceships with legos when I was a kid (each of which was like a Star Wars Battle Cruiser… )–or drawing huge murals with monsters fighting–or creating entire worlds for role-playing games–including maps and cities and city populations (see the Duchy of Hirakith that I created…)Maphir1

That’s where my personal creativity usually expresses itself.

These worlds all came from the inside of me… but that’s not the only way you can create a world.

Creating an abstract model.. a visualization of a complex process… this is also creating a “world.”   It may be a very small world–but it’s a world nonetheless–as it is a space that abides by certain rules and concepts.

Thus–constructing  an internal representation of a supply & demand graph in your head and then playing forward how different factors would shift this graph–that’s all something dealing with an internal world.

I had never realized this until my best half pointed this out to me two days ago.

Specifically, we were talking about the whole process of learning economics–she’s taking a class in economics–and she was noting specifically that it sometimes took her a bit of time to figure out these kinds of answers, because, “I have to create an entire world in my head to figure this out… “

And that’s when it struck me that she was 100% right about that.  You do have to create a world for that mental process.

This was something that did not come natural to her.  She was picking it up quickly (she learns fast as the dickens..)… but it wasn’t natural yet to create these worlds.

This does not mean that she doesn’t create her own worlds all the time.. She does, but she usually creates worlds in the external, objective reality.

She creates a world when she performs (as seen here as the lead singer of Sensuous Enemy…  )
cyber_perversion___sensuous_enemy_by_lauren_v-d6ezv75

She creates a world when she decorates our house.  She creates a world when she creates a menu or a schedule for the conferences that she helps to manage at her work.

She is an extravert–and her primary and natural reality is the external cosmos.  This is where things are “real” in the most easy sense for her.

Internal worlds, on the other hand, are the playground of introverts by and large in my experience.  That is where they are more comfortable–and thus that is where they first and most naturally create their worlds.

Not that there aren’t crossovers.  Being an extravert does not restrict you to the external world any more than being an introvert would restrict you to the internal world.  People may have natural tendencies–but they also can learn and become more than what they were.

I, for example, also create worlds when I cook and when I garden.  As it stands, I’m chomping at the bit to rebuild and expand my garden…

IF

It is but a small thing so far–but it is a world for me–and not an internal one.  It exists out here and while it may have significant meaning on the inside for me–the reality of it is external and something I enjoy the physicality of it.

If anything–gardens are a great example of created worlds and I’ll leave everyone with a view of a very famous garden that I once got to walk through–the Herrenhaeuser Gaerten outside of Hannover, Germany.  Created by Sophia–the Electress of Hannover–they played an important role in the political affairs of the early 18th century..and they are a world unto themselves.

herrenhaeuser-gaerten-ii-ff695e4b-ce0a-432b-aa8e-1d59a74fe927

 

Posted in Human Nature and Mind, Images and Visualization, Nature | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment