Re:

Can philosophers help resolve the real problems that people have in their lives?

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henry quirk
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Post by henry quirk » Tue May 03, 2016 2:23 pm

I have to admit, Gary, I don't get existential angst.

I'm breaking down too, piece by fleshy piece, and - like Doc - I find ways to cope with, to navigate around, or just make peace with, my disintergration.

Mebbe that's the true wisdom: seeing or seeking options that weren't obvious when young, and, just making do.

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Re:

Post by artisticsolution » Tue May 03, 2016 3:33 pm

henry quirk wrote:I have to admit, Gary, I don't get existential angst.

I'm breaking down too, piece by fleshy piece, and - like Doc - I find ways to cope with, to navigate around, or just make peace with, my disintergration.

Mebbe that's the true wisdom: seeing or seeking options that weren't obvious when young, and, just making do.
That's what "K" calls infinite resignation. ..lol. I think that is what everyone does to an extent....unless they are brave enough to kill themselves...in either case...it's so silly to worry about a life that is as short as the blink of an eye compared to eternity.

Just get on with it. Do what it is you're wont to do...it'll all be over soon enough.

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Re: Re: old age how I view its challenges

Post by hajrafradi » Tue May 03, 2016 10:00 pm

marjoram_blues wrote: It's just another phase you are going through. It's the pre-old stage. Like the pre-teens...but different.
You are most likely absolutely right on, MB. Except I don't "go" through phases... I "push" through phases. It is never an easy glide. With all the connotations included.

In fact, you made me realize how aptly I entitled my book of poetry (self-published) "Pushthrough".

The other thought your post invoked is that we go from phase to phase... no stagnation, ever.

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Life stages and states of being

Post by marjoram_blues » Wed May 04, 2016 8:33 am

hajrafradi wrote:
marjoram_blues wrote: It's just another phase you are going through. It's the pre-old stage. Like the pre-teens...but different.
You are most likely absolutely right on, MB. Except I don't "go" through phases... I "push" through phases. It is never an easy glide. With all the connotations included.

In fact, you made me realize how aptly I entitled my book of poetry (self-published) "Pushthrough".

The other thought your post invoked is that we go from phase to phase... no stagnation, ever.


HF, you know I am most certainly not absolutely right on, ever - and thanks for probing further 8)
The chopping up of life into different age stages is not particularly helpful when it comes to feelings you are going, or pushing, through. I was reminded of the 10cc song 'I'm not in love'. And also the 'counselling' at a 'difficult' age: 'Don't worry, you'll grow out of it'.

So, yes, we may go through stages of development, the process of change and formation. However that is not to say that there is 'no stagnation, ever'. Life goes on, but we clearly experience states of feeling stale or dull, of having ceased to live joyfully, or meaningfully.

Does your 'Pushthrough' poetry help in a 'counselling' kinda way?
Kierkegaard asks: ' What is a poet? An unhappy man who hides deep anguish in his heart, but whose lips are so formed that when the sigh and cry pass through them, it sounds like lovely music.' ( p43 Either/Or - a fragment of life )

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Re: Re:

Post by marjoram_blues » Wed May 04, 2016 9:19 am

AS - hi and great to hear from you too - and still with the K, I see :wink:

You write so well with so much substance that I'm gonna have to do the [...] thing. Not that the missing bits are not meaningful, just a fickle choice of mine. I've also highlighted in blue some bits I have questions about.
AS wrote:
Couldn't sleep so I finally just gave up and decided to start my day, and what a pleasant surprise to find your post! You know I'm K's girl...lol. He just cracks me up. I think the thing that helps me get through life is the aesthetic entertainment value of a world that you are pretty much damned if you do and damned if you don't.

The thing I love about Either/Or and most of the books I have read by K, is that I felt like we had a connection...sort of like my sister and I have...were we have a secret language that we share that no one else gets. We crack each other up and everyone always says they don't get out humor...but we know what we mean by that certain look or body language thing we do...lol.

I have noticed that people say that there was a hierarchy if you will...(I am having trouble using my words today...lol) in either/or and many of K's book where he suggests that the aesthetic way of life is somehow lesser than the ethical way of life. Arguing that the hedonistic aesthetic is shallow entertainment value and that ethical i.e.devoting oneself to another out of duty , or some other socially acceptable "good" is somehow a more profound. right, lofty way to live.

I did not read K that way at all. The way I read K is that it's all shallow...aesthetic...so called 'ethical'...and that when people believe themselves to be ethical (like the judge) they are missing the point...or they aren't being honest with themselves...a huge tragedy to be so unaware and never to become acquainted with a deeper understanding of oneself.
[...]

Anyway, for me, part of living an authentic life, is to laugh at myself. I must admit...I am more like the aesthetic in K's book. I do find humor and entertainment in others...but I am not laughing at them and using them as the butt of my joke/folly. I am laughing because I see myself in them (the judge included)...in a sort of been there done that way. I don't see them as a means to an end...I see them as another human being, like myself, sharing space on this earth for the time being. Damned if we use each other for comfort (love, sex, friendship, entertainment, etc.), and damned if we don't.
Right now, rather than me write out all my questions ( boring ), let's make it more 'amusing' and see if you can connect with my dotty thoughts, dot, dot, dot.
On another note re: [blank] - might all 'counselling' type questions stem from a lack of 'connection' ?
Or the fact that some people seem to 'get' life, as in your 'been there, done that' - and that some seem to seek a magic wand to wave all their troubles away ? A piece of written wisdom that they can cling to, or discard, as The Way ?

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hajrafradi
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Re: Life stages and states of being

Post by hajrafradi » Wed May 04, 2016 10:16 am

marjoram_blues wrote: Does your 'Pushthrough' poetry help in a 'counselling' kinda way?
Kierkegaard asks: ' What is a poet? An unhappy man who hides deep anguish in his heart, but whose lips are so formed that when the sigh and cry pass through them, it sounds like lovely music.' ( p43 Either/Or - a fragment of life )
A Hungarian novelist, Dezso Kosztolanyi, put it this way (roughly translated by me now, ad-hoc): "Poets make a garbage heap out of their lives only so that they will produce a colourful mushroom to grow on it." I can't remember if he used the word "mushroom" or "flower".

I think he got it wrong. Poets start with their life being a heap of garbage but they don't create it themselves, and don't even like it having their life that way arranged. Their inner sense and yearning for beauty then creates the colourful vegetation. I mean, poets are reactive, not pro-active. They deal with their lives like those who are given lemons. Do the best with what they are handed. But to a non-poet, who looks at him or her from the outside, the process is indistinguishable from the way Kosztolanyi saw it. Because having your life resemble a garbage heap is also a self-generating process: you spiral downward, by force of your lifestyle you amplify your lifestyle. Onlookers may not notice that this is not necessarily your choice, they attribute the beginning as your own design, because they see you go from bad to worse, so they figure at one point you went ON YOUR OWN ACCORD from good to bad. But that first step is never the poet's wish or desire or even doing.

In other words, you have to be one to know how it exactly feels.

That's A. B. is that sometimes (an awful lot of times) the colourful vegetation seems only beautiful to the author of the poetry him- or herself. At that point, loneliness multiplies in intensity, but a sense of specialness and a sense of consolation has already been obtained. And those poets won't be damaged by the criticism of their poetry. Thank goodness.

Does poetry have any psychotherapeutic value for me? It feels good to push out a poem. A good poem. Like pushing out a good story. I feel relieved, and more at peace immediately after putting it out. Although it also galvanizes me a bit. Very comparable to inhaling the scent of the body of a woman (female pheromones) for a man (or the other way around for a woman, I guess): it both invigorates and calms the inhaling person. A little bit also like when you unburden yourself in the washroom. You feel lighter, more nimble, and energetic, while more relaxed and more at ease with yourself and with the world.

So the value of creating poetry, at least for me, may be more of a physiological relief, which brings about a gentle and mild sense of euphoria.

Wow wee. I did answer you, didn't I.

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Post by Greta » Wed May 04, 2016 11:56 am

This kind of existential angst forgets about the relativities. No doubt many have been there. Me too.

So let's say that Gary is nowhere near as decent as he seems and is therefore worthy of "deletion" to save our scarce resources. That begs the question about all the thieves, bullies, sadists, idiots, wastrels, fundamentalists, etc who are most likely far less moral and made much less of a contribution. Then they deserve to go too. I'm feeling like the Queen of Hearts here - "off with their heads!".

So, once the unworthy are removed, do we draw the line at Gary or do we raise the bar further and keep ridding the world of the least productive people until only the worthy are left? It would be a quiet forum - not that I'd be there to see it :)

When you get older you move from doing to being. It takes some ego adjusting in retirement to the loss of status experienced as you get out of touch with the corporate world and start losing your skills. It's especially challenging in today's rapidly changing world, where so much of your "knowledge" has since been found to be wrong information, where your skills are superseded and not in demand. I had a few projects earmarked for retirement which appeared quaint by the time I was freed and ready to go.

So I'm in search for a compelling project. Gary, it appears that you are too.

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Re: Re:

Post by duszek » Wed May 04, 2016 4:08 pm

How about "slow reading" ?

We already have a slow food movement.

Sometimes I read "De Anima" by Aristotle in this way.
The German translation is weird so it is a challenge.

I read one sentence and then try to explain it to an imaginary interlocutor, sometimes complaining about it and making guesses and paraphrasing and interpreting freely.

I sometimes open De Anima or something else at random and do the same game.

Sometimes we are put off by too much input and perhaps our brain goes on strike. So it could be good to activate other areas of the brain and thus create some balance there. Commenting requires other skills.

A further option: comment preteding to be Donald Duck or Garfield or Kermit or some other fictional character.

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Re: Re:

Post by Dubious » Wed May 04, 2016 9:17 pm

duszek wrote:How about "slow reading" ?
Definitely recommended by Nietzsche when reading was much slower.

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henry quirk
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Post by henry quirk » Wed May 04, 2016 10:33 pm

"That's what "K" calls infinite resignation"

Haven't gone near Melancholy Soren in a coon's age so I can't comment on his 'i.f.'...will say I don't feel particularly resigned to anything...gettin' older just means adapting to certain losses and recognizing certain gains...more a shift of strategies than resignation.

But, of course, sometimes, as I say, you just gotta make do, though that seems less like resignation and more like -- again -- just adapting to what 'is'.

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Re: Re:

Post by A_Seagull » Thu May 05, 2016 12:10 am

Harbal wrote:I find the worst thing about getting/being old is having to put up with being consantly undermined by my body. It used to be so cooperative but know it just seems to resent being told what to do?
Dear Harbal, things work in reverse as you get older. You need to learn to do what your body is telling you to do.

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Re: Re:

Post by Harbal » Thu May 05, 2016 5:54 am

A_Seagull wrote: You need to learn to do what your body is telling you to do.
That would be disastrous, it would get me into all sorts of trouble.

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Re: Re:

Post by A_Seagull » Thu May 05, 2016 6:17 am

Harbal wrote:
A_Seagull wrote: You need to learn to do what your body is telling you to do.
That would be disastrous, it would get me into all sorts of trouble.
And why not? What have you got to lose (that you haven't lost already) ?

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Re: Re:

Post by Hobbes' Choice » Thu May 05, 2016 8:14 am

A_Seagull wrote:
Harbal wrote:I find the worst thing about getting/being old is having to put up with being consantly undermined by my body. It used to be so cooperative but know it just seems to resent being told what to do?
Dear Harbal, things work in reverse as you get older. You need to learn to do what your body is telling you to do.
Emphasyma is the body's way of telling you not to smoke.
Cancer is nature's way of telling you to look after your self.
Gall stones are nature's way of telling you to cut down on fat
Can you think of any more?

marjoram_blues
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Slow reading

Post by marjoram_blues » Thu May 05, 2016 9:21 am

duszek wrote:How about "slow reading" ?
We already have a slow food movement.
Sometimes I read "De Anima" by Aristotle in this way.
The German translation is weird so it is a challenge.

I read one sentence and then try to explain it to an imaginary interlocutor, sometimes complaining about it and making guesses and paraphrasing and interpreting freely.
I sometimes open De Anima or something else at random and do the same game.

Sometimes we are put off by too much input and perhaps our brain goes on strike. So it could be good to activate other areas of the brain and thus create some balance there. Commenting requires other skills.

A further option: comment preteding to be Donald Duck or Garfield or Kermit or some other fictional character.
Brilliant, duszek !
Reading philosophy of any kind is certainly a challenge. I recall being given various recommendations on how best to read an article - but kinda still do my own thing anyway. When I first get excited about/introduced to a new author, book or an idea, I tend to want to know it all, all at once. Google can be my friend and foe. A quick fix, if you like.

Lately, my reading has slowed down - for various reasons. Tiredness, eye problems, - not necessarily related to 'growing old'. However, I don't think I would have the patience involved to read only one sentence at a time, with a view to explaining, complaining, speculating, paraphrasing, and interpreting freely.

Does this process of slow-reading also involve writing, or taking notes afterwards.
I'm also thinking of your later option of pretending to be a fictional character when commenting.
I wonder if this could be achieved on this forum? As in the fun element of Ping and Pong ?

You are right about the brain overload and the need for balance. It is striking the right kind of match, isn't it ?
I'd love to see an example of how you push through 'De Anima' using your 'slow-reading' method ?
Or how it might be transformed into a more exciting and fun forum thread...ping-pong style perhaps...
Thanks.

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