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"How many hypocrites are there in America? How many trembling lambs fearful of discovery? What Authority have we set up over ourselves, that we are not as we Are?" --Allen Ginsberg

What’s the use in living if you don’t explore and learn? And what’s the use in exploring and learning if you don’t take risks and explore previously uncharted territories?

I’m starting this new journal to tell myself and the world: Ich zittere nicht mehr. I tremble no more. Maybe if I chronicle my search in a public place such as livejournal, it will keep me going. Knowing that other people may be watching will give me that external push when I start to loose momentum.

*Raises his glass to the Universe.* Here’s lookin’ at you, kid.

Feb. 14th, 2006 @ 10:35 pm Curious...
Current Search
Hey guys,

Go here and here. I'm curious to know what you think about me.

Don't worry about offending me! :)
Feb. 3rd, 2006 @ 06:51 pm GUERILLA RADIO!!!!!
Current Search
Just to let anyone know who might read this, Laurie and I now have a radio show at the campus station WRKE. You can listen to streaming audio of it at www.wrke.org It's gonna be on Saturdays from 5-7.

Our radio show is called Mix Tape Radio. People send in themes for mix tapes. We take the good ones and compile a playlist then play it on the air.

We just finished prepping our show and it's gonna be awesome! This week's theme is "Yes, we're Hippies"

TUNE IN AND BE WOW'd!

Love you all!
Feb. 1st, 2006 @ 11:38 am Ok, so I kinda dropped this as I expected...
Current Search
But, I'll pick it up now! I have three things to talk about.

Ok, the first:

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/01/31/sheehan.arrest/index.html

I'm not a big fan of Cindy Sheehan, OR Michael Moore, but guys... c'mon... A T-SHIRT FOR GOD'S SAKE! THE T DOES NOT STAND FOR TERRORIST, MR. BUSH! Besides, she was a guest of a Congresswoman. This has clinched it for me. There is absolutely NO room for descent(sp?) in Bush's mind. And before I move on:

"Sheehan has pestered the Bush administration since August, when she and hundreds of fellow protesters began demanding an audience with the president and camping outside his ranch in Crawford, Texas."

Pestered. At first glance, it doesn't seem like much, but isn't there a thing called ethical journalism? Aren't you supposed to report facts and not give oppinions? I'm not one to nitpick, but to me, "pestered" has much too much of a negative conotation to be unbiased.

And, the second: I know my stint in Libertarianism back in August didn't last long, and for all I know, it could be the same with this, but something feels different; exciting; alive.

http://www.infoshop.org/

Yes, anarchism. Before you go ape-shit, browse the FAQ a bit. Do a bit of research. There are lots of links to different sites, and lots of information at the site itself. Anarchism is far from the "throwing pipe-bombs into crowds of businessmen, chaos and disorder" story we've been told since we were kids. Anarchism can be and is becomming a viable political movement once more. I'm not saying I am an anarchist, but I'm damn sure thinking about it. I'm so fed up with politics in this country, right now this seems like the only option I can put my all into.

Think about it.

And, lastly:

http://www.question911.com/

I'm not going to say much about this one lest I do the story injustice. But I will say this: at least watch the short intro movie near the top of the page. Think about the questions posited. If you think there might be some validity to those questions, download the documentary "Loose Change" for a more in-depth look. There is a lot of information out there, some valid, some less than. Do some searching and decide for yourself what is plausible, and what is bullshit.

Anyway, I love you all. I'll try to get back to bloging again soon.
Aug. 16th, 2005 @ 05:06 pm Political Dichotomy and Libertarianism
Current Search
I hate how polarized we are in this country politically. Republican-Democrat. Liberal-Conservative. As though there are only two ways of looking at government! There are so many shades of gray within and between these two party's philosophies. And I hate how the parties hold a monopoly on representation. There are so many road blocks and hoops for third party candidates to get around and jump though just to get on the BALLOT, let alone raise enough money to run a campaign. I thought we were a country of freedom, a country of choice!

I've long been philosophically in support of third parties. Hell, even fourth, fifth, and sixth parties (most of all I'm in favor of sex parties)! But, I've never done anything actively to support them. So, I began researching them. In my search I found the Libertarian party. There are quite a lot of things I like about them, for example: they are in favor of gay rights, they support the repeal of laws relating to victimless crimes such as drug use, they want to end the "doctrine of sovereign immunity", they support completely unabridged free speech, recognize the military's sole role is for defensive purposes and shouldn't have the right to attack another country, and they support vast spending cuts in all aspects of government.

However, there are a few things I don't like. They want an end to ALL taxation, they want all schools to be privatized, and separation of Bank and State, even when it comes to minting money. Granted, I am not listing everything I like and dislike, just some of the bigger ones.

I understand that someone needs to be extreme in order to pull government in the right direction. But, there are too many issues on which I differ greatly to justify becoming a Libertarian. I was happy to find something called the Libertarian Reform Caucus. They are a group who recognize the Libertarian Party is too radical to gain a wide support base, but see the merit in their philosophy. Some are active members within the party, some are former members, and some are like me, but all are working to make the party more moderate. So, I joined the LRC. I hope that I can help in turning them into a party which can be a real positive force in American politics.

If not, I'll continue my search for a political philosophy with which I can align myself.

The Libertarian Reform Caucus
The National Libertarian Party Platform
Aug. 15th, 2005 @ 05:30 pm What the Bleep, Indeed...
Current Search
From www.whatthebleep.com"

"WHAT THE BLEEP DO WE KNOW?! is a new type of film. It is part documentary, part story, and part elaborate and inspiring visual effects and animations. The protagonist, Amanda, played by Marlee Matlin, finds herself in a fantastic Alice in Wonderland experience when her daily, uninspired life literally begins to unravel, revealing the uncertain world of the quantum field hidden behind what we consider to be our normal, waking reality.

continued...Collapse )

Trailer

I saw this movie a few months ago. I'd kinda forgotten about it until last night. Well, not forgotten about it, but stopped thinking about it. It was my introduction to quantum physics. You need to see it, and I need to watch it again!
Aug. 15th, 2005 @ 02:53 pm Literature, Drugs, and the Trembling Lambs
Current Search
"How many hypocrites are there in America? How many trembling lambs fearful of discovery? What Authority have we set up over ourselves, that we are not as we Are?" --Allen Ginsberg

For roughly the last three years, I have prided myself on the fact that I search for Meaning, and Truth within myself, and the Universe. I have told myself and others that I try my hardest to challenge my own conceptions of the way things Are.

But have I really done this? Let's examine my life since the Fall of 2002.

At the beginning of my Freshman year of college, as most if not all of you reading undoubtedly know, I was at the beginning of the long and arduous process of getting over Juli, my girlfriend of two and a half years. Less than two months after starting college, and nearly a year before I truly moved on from Juli, I began dating Rachel. Love, hate, jealousy, confusion, lies, and insecurity ensued. Amidst this strife, I renounced my previous steadfast (or so I thought) faith in Christianity. This is where I mark the beginning of my "search." After a short stint in spiritual limbo, I became more and more interested in Buddhism. I studied a bit, but I realized, and rightly so, that I couldn't truly practice a religion (or philosophy, or whatever you want to classify Buddhism) with no solid belief in it. I did have belief in the practice of meditation which is a big factor in Buddhism especially that of the Zen persuasion, in which I was most interested. Whether or not I became a full blown Buddhist didn't really matter. I knew then and now, meditation has practical applications in life. But, I was too caught up in my own sadness and naiveté to put any of my newfound knowledge into practice. Sure, I contemplated it, but I never really followed through.

At the beginning of my Sophomore year in college, I was coming out of an amazing summer. I had put Juli behind me, and I really felt that Rachel and I were at a new beginning. I was thinking less about spiritual matters (though I was still reading and contemplating) and thinking more about starting with a clean slate both in my life with Rachel, and my life in school. Rachel broke up with me soon after the year began, and we spent the rest of the year doing the on-again off-again thing. I was thinking even less about the Universe around me and focusing again on my pain. As the year was nearing its end, I was introduced to marijuana. I spent every few weekends getting high with friends, and exploring the newfound effects on my perception. The year ended, and Rachel and I called it off for good.

That summer was a big one for me. I took on a job in Charlottesville, VA working for an organization called The Wesley Foundation. I was helping to plan and run a Christian day camp for underprivileged kids in the area with 10 other college students. I took the job not because of its Christian aspect, but because a) it was a job with somewhat decent pay, and b) I got to reach out to and hopefully teach kids who desperately needed positive influences in their lives. Initially I was worried that my co-workers would be close minded, conservative Christians much like I was in High School. Half of them were, but the other half were at least a bit more open minded, and fairly if not extremely liberal. I got along swimmingly with even the more conservative of them in terms of friendship (I even considered going back to Christianity, but ultimately decided that was not for me any more). I was, for the most part, distracted for those months from my burgeoning depression. No, not distracted from, but blinded to its existence. This blindness continued into the better part of my Junior year.

I threw myself into a heavy, near daily regimen of pot once the year began. I became addicted, not in the sense that I needed it to function, or experienced withdrawal symptoms as a heroin or coke addict might, but I used it to escape my feelings of self-loathing and inadequacy. My grades suffered greatly as a result (Not that they were great to begin with. I’ve always considered myself an intelligent person, who just doesn’t live up to his potential; or so my mother would have me believe). I thought at best I was having fun, just being a crazy college student, going through a “bad boy” phase, or even exploring the expanses of the universe, the human mind, and the realm of the soul; chemically aided meditation, and at worst I was just being lazy. As a friend put it, I was simply replacing “whacking off and reading science fiction” with pot. It’s nothing too different from what I would have been doing anyway. I never suspected it was depression. But it began to dawn on me during spring semester that year. I got three D’s and an F the previous semester, with no marked improvement the second time around. I made myself believe I was making an effort to cut down on the smoking, but it never materialized. Then I got caught. As I walked through the literal and proverbial downpour that day, realization hit me full in the face.
All this searching I thought I was doing was just superficial. I was too caught up in my relationship woes, or living in a purple haze to truly learn anything about the enormous universe in which I live. I wasn’t even learning in my classes because I slept most of the day away. Anything that truly challenged my conceptions of the world, I was too afraid to explore.

I’ve come to believe over the last few years that the universe is unknowable. It’s too expansive to truly understand ANYTHING. While this is scary to me, it is also, in a sense, comforting. It’s not within my power to understand the answer to life, the universe and everything; therefore, it is not my burden either. So I’ve settled for exploring myself, and at least exploring my world in the historical, and political sense. Use these things to better myself, and change what I do not like about me. I’ve settled for writing as a way of exploration, and creation. If I can’t understand the god or Being who created me, I can be a mirror of that Being. I can create people and things in my mind, and I can create myself.

To quote my friend Peter’s journal:

"Literature is great because it's about connecting to the author and personal connections to thought, but it lacks that objective strive unity and principles that is so inticing to me, the kind of stuff in science and philosophy. Sure, deconstruction and subjective post-modernism is fun and can help you see the 'guts' of thought, but it lacks that drive for unity, the desire for taxonomically categorize and understanding Everything. Literature helps to dream the dreams and think the thoughts, but it lacks the actual reasonable and empirical search for What It Is. Literature dreams, Religion hopes, Philosophy plans, and Science finds. So many people I know refuse to acknowledge the importance of inter-disciplinary studies and integration of knowledge. It is so easy to get off on counterculture and ignore the time-tested principles and search for something outside yourself. That diversion seems to lapse into moral relativism and solipsism instead of trying to unify knowledge. Both science and philosophy touch raw nerves in literary and religious folk because of its proximity to the most intimate knowledge one has about God, the world, and the soul, and step on the toes of the dreams and hopes in its quest for Truth. Even Truth offends literary people moreso than religious people because literature is a quest to "find yourself" and define who you are, while science, philosophy, and religion seek to unify and objectify. This unification is the abyss that can terrify people because it says maybe you are not so special and a universe exists outside you.

"The consensous of intellectualism sees reality as constituted by the collection of subjective observations and objectivity coming only from the consensual facts, while I'd say the universe is more like a car accident: a car crashes and the chaos ensues and obfuscates investigation (in the beginning...); some people tell their witnessed story as truth and think there are too many different stories to ever find What Actually Happened (literature), some know their story, but realize the falability of their story and deduce What Actually Happened from reasonable investigation, yet cannot convince others because of the lack of empirical investigation (philosophy), some overheard a police scanner and use that to guide them and take no other story, or very little of stories, as more than a supplement to this revelation (religion), while some hear the people searching for the objective truth and try to model, using toy cars and diagrams, to explain what happened and find bits of fender and shrapnel to piece it together in a story often contrary to the police scanner reports (science). There may never be an answer found, but this searching in the pale moonlight and buzzing streetlamps with the confusion and chaos of police and emergency services flashing lights and pushing people back makes for a damn fun evening, even if you hopped out of bed in your boxers after hearing the Big Bang. There may never be an answer or end to investigation, but that speculation is the best time of your life even if some people want another car crash or ignore what you saw."

When I read that last night, I realized I focus too much on the inner. I’ve never been one for math or science. My brain doesn’t seem wired for numbers and logic. But is that true? Is my aversion to more logical avenues of investigation hard-wired, or am I, as Ginsberg would say, “a trembling [lamb] fearful of discovery?” Have I set up an authority over myself blocking the road to the way things truly are?
I don’t know. I may never know. I’m not saying I believe completely in what Peter is saying, but I intend to search until I find an answer, or die. What’s the use in living if you don’t explore and learn? And what’s the use in exploring and learning if you don’t take risks and explore previously uncharted territories?

I’m starting this new journal to tell myself and the world: Ich zittere nicht mehr. I tremble no more. Maybe if I chronicle my search in a public place such as livejournal, it will keep me going. Knowing that other people may be watching will give me that external push when I start to loose momentum.

*Raises his glass to the Universe.* Here’s lookin’ at you, kid.