Archive for February, 2006

It’s nice to be important…

22 February 2006

…but it’s more important to be nice. To wit:

“Another Sunim, Zen Master Dae Bong, said, “When you live together, it’s like rocks in a stream: all the sharp points get worn away. Then you’re nice and smooth. Everyone loves river stones and wants to put one in their pocket. Why? Because they’re smooth. Make yourself smooth, and others will want to put you in their pockets,” meaning we can help and teach people but only once we ourselves have “worn away” our karma enough that we’re no longer in our own way. Meditation and the meditation hall is generally thought of as something you do after you learn how to play nice with others. “

This is from One robe, one bowl. Nice blog. Good sense of humour.

Convergence

21 February 2006

I’m not seeing much (any?) talk about the intersection of climate change and peak oil.

There’s a prima facie case to say, of course, that since we’ll be running out of oil soon that global warming will just end up being automatically corrected by us managing to run out of oil at an opportune moment. I don’t know how seriously to take this particularly since there’s still a lot of coal in the ground and it could be a huge global warming offender.

That said, the possiblity that really interests me is that we run out of oil and have an economic crash right around the time it becomes inescapably clear that we need to take radical steps to mitigate climate change. So, we end up with a coincident need to take probably incredibly expensive steps at the same time as our ability to do so tanks.

Ouch.

Meaning and failure

21 February 2006

If people don’t feel like they can really screw up then they can’t feel like what they do is important. Making it impossible for a child or a subordinate to fail is a recipe for meaninglessness.

Note that the converse isn’t necessarily true. It is possible to be held to account for success or failure in a meaningless task.

The former is a recipe for apathy. The latter is a recipe for despair.

Priorities

14 February 2006

So how’d you come out at the doctor’s then?
– Oh, not so good.
– What’d they say?
– Cancer. But I knew that going in.
– Prostate?
– Nope. Pancreas.
– So what you gonna do then? Chemo?
– Naw, I don’t want nothin’ to do with that stuff.
– How long they give you?
– A year, maybe a little more. That’s what he said.
– Well, they don’t know everything. Lot of guys still walking around who were supposed to croak years ago. Don’t give up, for Chrissake.
– I’m not giving up. I’m just not as interested in my pension as I used to be.

14 February 2006

We can be as aware as we want of the impending crises, threats or doom but if that awareness can’t be translated into action, then ulitmately it is futile. So then, the question is what paths to action can grow out of our awareness?

Apocalypse-a-phobia

9 February 2006

This is not the 1st time I’ve worried about the apocalypse. I lived through the late 70s and early 80s as a University student and young adult and I worried then, with good reason I still think, about nuclear annihilation. But the cold war ended and the fear that life on earth would be wiped out in a holocaust of nuclear fire faded away.

Well, apocalypse is back on the agenda again this time in the form of climate change/global_warming and peak oil. Read the rest of this entry »

And a one, And a two…

8 February 2006

Look, here’s what I’m thinking. This will just be a space where I can write about the things that I’m interested in that are fit for public consumtion. So that pretty much amounts to three topics: 1) Zen and Taoism, 2) sailing and 3) the politics of liberty.

Oh, and why Haddock Ailment? Let’s leave that as an exercise for the reader, shall we? Although, here’s a hint.