Perspective: Making Sense Of It ALL
“Ramblings with Nate”
“The question: “What would you do differently?”
is not only foolish but a costly indulgence.
The useful question is… what will you do now?”
-The Secret Knowledge: David Mamet-
HBO Series “TRUE DETECTIVE” – Season 1 Episode 4
“Well, you got to get the hubris it must take to yank a soul out of non-existence into this meat and to force a life into this thresher.”
“Human evolution was a tragic misstep in evolution. We became too self-aware. Nature created an aspect of nature separate from itself. We are creatures that should not exist by natural law”.
“Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think”
“If you don’t get what you want, you suffer; if you get what you don’t want, you suffer;
even when you get exactly what you want, you still suffer because you can’t hold on to it forever.
Your mind is your predicament. It wants to be free of change,
free of pain, and free of the obligations of life and death.
But change is law and no amount of pretending will alter that reality.”
-Way of The Peaceful Warrior: Dan Millman-
“A warrior is not about perfection, or victory, or invulnerability.
He’s about absolute vulnerability.
That’s the only true courage.
Life is choice.
You can choose to be a victim or anything else you’d like to be.
How do I start? There is no starting or stopping, only doing.
Life has three rules: Paradox, humor, and change.
Paradox: Life is a mystery. Don’t waste time trying to figure it out.
Humor: Keep a good sense of humor, especially about yourself.
It is a strength beyond all measure.
Change: Know that nothing stays the same.
The journey is what brings us happiness, not the destination.
Where are you? Here
What time is it? Now
What are you? This moment
– The Way of a Peaceful Warrior: Dan Millman-
“Happiness is a function of accepting what is.”
“Of course, there is no formula for success except perhaps an unconditional acceptance of life and what it brings.”
“I had a terrible education. I attended a school for emotionally disturbed teachers.”
“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”
– Mark Twain-
“Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value.”
“There are these two young fish swimming along and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, “Morning, boys. How’s the water?”
The two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, “What the hell is water?”
“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as
what you become by achieving your goals.”
-Henry David Thoreau-
“Never give a sword to a man who can’t dance.”
“To forgive is to set a prisoner free and realize that prisoner was you.”
~Lewis B. Smedes-
“We do not quit playing because we grow old; we grow old because we quit playing.”
-Oliver Wendell Holmes-
“Nobody can hurt me without my permission.”
– Mahatma Gandhi-
“It’s much easier to ride the horse in the direction he’s going.”
– Werner Erhard-
Everything in the Universe has a lifespan.
There are trees that are thousands of years old.
A Bowhead Whale has a lifespan of about 200 years.
A May Fly has a life expectancy of 1-24 hours.
Our sun will die in about 6 billion years.
Humans have a lifespan of about 78 years.
There is no spiritual or wondrous meaning to life and death.
The moment we are born we start to decay like everything else in the Universe.
“If you cannot find the truth right where you are, where else do you expect to find it?”
“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once,
I fear the man who has practiced 1 kick 10,000 times”
“There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.”
“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”
“America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed it ourselves.”
“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
– Henry David Thoreau-
At the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started,
and know the place for the first time.
– T.S. Elliot –
This is what they would have you believe:
“Critical thinking” is the single most important lesson we can teach to our species, but the more I use it the more relevant it seems to be. When I first read about “Charlotte’s Web” cannabis, I immediately thought “I gotta get me some of that stuff”. Before I clicked the “buy it now” icon I decided to do some research because the ingredients of the many products that are now legally available marketed as Hemp CBD were different and didn’t make much sense. It seems if you keep digging through the hundreds of links on the internet you eventually find unbiased “truthful” information or better yet well done scientific research. Most of our species are incredibly biased for a number of reasons. Most rely on perceptions that are almost always extraordinarily inaccurate, and yes I have the research to support this. This accompanied by our fear of being wrong is a powerful deterrent to critical thinking. We learn very early on in life that being wrong makes us very uncomfortable and lowers our self-esteem. This is the gift of our education system when we raise our hands in school we feel stupid by getting an answer wrong. It is then reinforced with the tests we are given and punished for with low grades or worse yet the word “FAILED”. We resist believing undeniable scientific evidence because we either don’t want to believe it, for fear of being wrong, not wanting to change our behavior or because of the power of indoctrination.
Being okay with being wrong and being okay with failure is the trademark of all those who created the most valuable accomplishments.
Indoctrination and propaganda (WMDs in Afghanistan, “people are too stupid to know what’s good for them so we need to make more and more laws and regulate everything”), teach us to simply accept the current thinking of our culture, social norms, politicians, media and much more without questioning them.
For 70 years our government has outlawed marijuana use, having us believe it is a dangerous drug. It seems our politicians never seem capable of learning from their past mistakes. Prohibition was one of our biggest blunders. The war on drugs, another federal catastrophe has been in force for more than five decades with absolutely nothing to show for it. Politicians are guilty of continually making laws and regulations based on their perceptions rather than facts and science.
Marijuana has never been linked to an overdose death
- The hippocampus — responsible for memory
- The cerebral cortex — responsible for cognition
- The cerebellum — responsible for motor coordination
- The basal ganglia — responsible for movement
- The hypothalamus — responsible for appetite
- The amygdala — responsible for emotions
Interestingly enough, these same receptors are also found in every animal species, all the way down to the sponge. According to Martin Lee, author of Smoke Signals:
“Cannabinoid receptors are more abundant in the brain than any other type of neurotransmitter receptor and function as subtle sensing devices, tiny vibrating scanners perpetually primed to pick up biochemical cues that flow through fluids surrounding each cell… When tickled by THC or its endogenous cousins, these receptors trigger a cascade of biochemical changes on a cellular level that puts the brakes on excessive physiological activity. Endocannabinoids are the only neurotransmitters that engage in such ‘retrograde signaling,’ a form of intracellular communication that inhibits immune response, reduces inflammation, relaxes musculature, lowers blood pressure, dilates bronchial passages, and normalizes overstimulated nerves. Retrograde signaling serves as an inhibitory feedback mechanism that tells other neurotransmitters to ‘cool it’ when they are firing too fast.”
Dr. Dustin Sulak, a leading practitioner in naturopathic medicine said this during a lecture at the 2010 National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) conference:
“The endogenous cannabinoid system, named after the plant that led to its discovery, is perhaps the most important physiologic system involved in establishing and maintaining human health. In each tissue, the cannabinoid system performs different tasks… But the goal is always the same: homeostasis, the maintenance of a stable internal environment despite fluctuations in the external environment.”
In essence, the endocannabinoid functions like a central processing center that keeps many important systems in balance.
Molecules in the brain limits impacts of too much cannabis
In addition, scientists have now found that the brain produces a hormone called pregnenolone that appears to protect the body from marijuana’s intoxicating effects. Study author Dr. Pier Vincenzo Piazza explained:
“When the brain is stimulated by high doses of THC, it produces pregnenolone – a 3,000 percent increase – that inhibits the effects of THC.”
When the THC binds with receptors, as explained above, there is a release of pregnenolone, which weakens the THC’s action on the receptors — this creates a negative feedback loop that could prevent users from getting too high.
Although the study was originally conducted to look at ways to manage cannabis “addiction,” this new information adds valuable insight into the fact that an overdose is not possible.
Stop “Trying” To BE Happy
What is the difference between a thought and an experience?
What is the difference between a thought and a feeling or an emotion?
The simple answer is that experience or emotions do not require language or thoughts.
Before humans invented language they must have certainly experienced emotions.
Scientists have demonstrated that animals experience emotions.
How can we observe this in our daily lives?
Infants experience a wide range of emotions without language.
Love and happiness are not emotions, they are concepts we invented with language.
They have no meaning without context.
Just think about the thousands of ways we use the word love every day.
I love my mom and dad, I love my friend, and I love chocolate ice cream with sprinkles on top.
I love to watch the sunset, I love my puppy, I love my girlfriend.
I love that dress, I love those shoes, I love yoga, I love the smell of napalm in the morning.
Happiness is an incredibly nebulous concept.
We say we want happiness as if once we “get it” it’s ours to keep forever.
It waxes and wanes from moment to moment, day to day, that is a reality we need to accept.
Things change, nothing stays the same.
Joy is an experience. We can observe it in infants and children.
Fear, anger, pain, joy, sadness, loneliness, anxiety, and depression, are experiences that cannot
be understood with words unless you have experienced them yourself.
There are an endless amount of experiences that people have had that cannot be experienced by another person simply with the use of language.
There are still primitive cultures in the world today that wouldn’t understand what the hell we are “talking” about because it is not in the realm of human experiences; they are simply concepts we have created.
So my advice… stop “trying” to be happy and experience the joy in life whenever possible.