I am a computer programmer by day and philosopher by night. I post once or twice a week. I aim to prevent blogging from taking to much time, while allowing time to develop each idea before posting it. Each has some reference to human, universal, or societal truths, while presented in an organized, understandable & consise way -- this is the plan anyway. Results may very as what rings true for one may seem false to another. Also becuase sometimes I get things wrong.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Alienated from the One

My grandfather sent a couple books to me that he wanted me to have before he passed away. One of them was Markings, by Dag Hammarskjold. I thought of this book because I feel it is one of the sources of inspiration for my blog, and I turned (totally at random) to something that sounds a bit like what I was thinking the other night.


Result and reaction -- The intense blaze of your anxiety reveals to what a great extent you are still fettered, still alienated from the One.

However, don't worry about this or anything else, but follow the Way of which you are aware, even when you have departed from it.

"Nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt."

Trying to obtain inner peace just seems to lead to agitation, as do all such concerns. I'll try to accept my non-peace and see where I end up. Thinking in the back of my mind this may lead to peace, but taking care to stay emotionally disengaged from the question.

This is not apathy because apathy is resignation to a subjectively bad situation but all the while is bitter toward said situation. It is not that I don't care about inner peace. It is only that I cease to concern myself with it for a time.

Sunday, October 23, 2005


Truth is the sowing of trust. The ultimate fruit of which is community.

But, being truthful is much more important then this.

Being truthful to others inspires truthfulness to self. How can you be truthful to others without first being truthful to yourself?

Truthfulness to self requires internal reflection.

Internal reflection requires insightful self observation.

When all of these are well cultivated this is deep sincerity.

Deep sincerity allows one to live in accordance with ones own values in a harmonious state. That is to say, free of internal conflict.

We cannot realise Rama by reading the Ramayana, or Krishna by reading the Gita, or Allah by reading the Koran, or Christ by reading the Bible; the only means of realising them is by developing a pure and noble character. Character is based on virtuous action and virtuous action is grounded on Truth. Truth, then, is the source and foundation of all things that are good and great. Hence, fearless and unflinching pursuit of the ideal of Truth and Righteousness is the key of true health as of all else.
- Mohandas Gandhi

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Courage & Caution

Living is like going swimming. While caution is needed, so is courage.

First prepare yourself. Now test the water with your foot. The temperature is fine. Now collect your confidence & jump in.

If you don't test the water and consider its temperature you maybe in for a shock when you get in.

If you are too cautious and get in little by little you will waste the afternoon with no time to swim.

Thus, in swimming & living a balance of courage and caution is needed.


I wrote this in my private journal on 11/22/2003, I've made few corrections & changes for this online posting. Seems like a long time ago.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

"Can’t we all just get along?"

You might be tempted think I am schizophrenic after this post. I'm not. This thought just seemed to express itself better as a conversation.

Voice 1: "can't we all just get along?" it seemed like silly wishful thinking back when I first heard it. Of course we can't get along!

Voice 2: Well, why not?

Voice 1: We can't accept other people if we can't accept ourselves.

Voice 2: why can't we accept ourselves?

Voice 1: Yes, exactly, "can't we all just get along" is a pretty profound question.

Voice 2: Maybe we can. Maybe we just don't want to???

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Better in the right place then kept close by

It bugs me when I reach for something and it isn't where it 'should' be. It bugs me more when that something I've been looking for is something that I was using only a day or two before. While my apartment may look like total chaos to the eyes of an outsider. Things have a place here or at least a general area. If I need a programming book it is on the shelf by my computer on one of the first two shelves or laying on my floor if it is one I use often. If I need the scissors they belong under the TV with string, tape and playing cards. My videos are predictably on a shelf just under the TV. If I need the directory for the meeting (ie Church) that I attend, that is on the book shelf near the window, except when I've misplaced it.

This is precisely what has been happening recently. I've been asked to review the directory's contact sections for this year's directory (which by the way is already late). I keep picking it up and leaving it somewhere near the computer. But, I never remember this so even if I am sitting at the computer the next time I need it I don't remember that it is right there and get up to go get it. I find that it isn't where it should be and then I start wondering where it went.

Somehow I've gotten the idea that if I leave things close by they will be in a more useful location. This is rarely the case sense I don't remember where I put things (unless it is the 'right' place). A second problem is that if I leave them 'near by' the place where I last needed it I may need it somewhere totally different the next time. So even knowing where it is, I still may not save any time when I need it next. In any case I don't often have someone else rearranging my stuff (although this has happened) so I really only have myself to blame.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Counting in Chinese

When I decided to place a web counter on my page, I noticed that one of the possible counter styles was in Chinese. Cool, I thought this will fit right in. (My interests include Tai Chi and eastern philosophy/spirituality.) I took a class in Chinese language two years ago, and the numbers (1-10) are just about all I can remember (of these I only remembered some of the symbols). At least trying to read my counter will prevent me from forgetting this tiny bit that has stayed with me this far.

In case you also forgot the numbers, here is a quick cheat sheet!

While at it, I'll post this image just so I can attach it to my blogger profile. I looked over a bunch of dragon images and I thought this one was the only one to be dynamic, 'real looking', and be colorful. He (or she?) looks a bit mean so this isn't my ideal, but it will do for now. :)

Friday, October 07, 2005

Turning Life & Death upside down

I love this passage from Chuang Tsu. He has such a masterful way of turning our beliefs upside down and getting us to reexamine them bottom side up:

How can I tell if love of life is not a delusion? How can I tell whether a man who fears death is not like a man who has left home and dreads returning? Lady Li was the daughter of a border guard of Ai. When the Duke of Chin first took her captive, she wept until her dress was soaked with tears. But once she was living in the Duke's palace, sharing his bed, and eating delicious food, she wondered why she had ever cried. How can I tell whether the dead are not amazed that they ever clung to life?

Those who dream of great feast may weep the next morning. Those who dream of weeping may enjoy the hunt the next day. While they dream they do not know they are dreaming. They may even interpret their dreams while still dreaming. Only after they awake do they know it was a dream.

By and by, there will be a great awakening; then we will know that this is all a great dream. All the while, the fools think they are awake, appearing to understand things, calling this man ruler and that man herdsman. How stupid! You and Confucius are both dreaming. When I say you are dreaming. I am dreaming too. These words may sound like double-talk. Yet after ten thousand generations, we will meet a great sage who can explain all this. Or is may happen any time now.

This is taken from the Gia-Fu Feng/Jane English translation of the Inner Chapters. It is part of a larger story, the only hint of this is the mention of Confucius.