Lust for knowledge. The sin of our era…

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A new computational-model reveals that serotonin, one of the most widespread chemicals in the brain, can speed up learning. (1)

Researchers have found that piano lessons have a specific effect on kindergartners’ ability to distinguish different pitches, which translates into an improvement in discriminating between words. (2)

We live in a knowledge-centric world. Wanting to add more and more into the sea of knowledge. While what we should be doing is trying to empty it. And see that it is a bottomless sea. With every knowledge added, a new question arising. With every mystery solved, ten more appearing. Like the Danaides, cursed to complete a feat which is from the beginning destined to fail.

Stop trying to understand.

There is nothing to compute.

There is nothing to discover.

Every time you look at that sea.

You are looking at yourself on the calm surface…

Let the slightest drop fall in and the simplest and deepest of the truths will emerge. The image is distorted. There is no you. There is nothing to see. Dive deep to the bottom of the sea. And see for yourself. There is nothing there. Only the thing you bring with you… Suddenly you are standing dry. Next to a big old tree. You hold water in your hands. You are thirsty. But… look at that small pond. There is a fish in it. You put the water inside… And without knowing it… You kill yourself…

Credo!

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Tertullian is widely regarded as having originated the expression “Credo quia absurdum” (est) (I believe because it is absurd) and the phrase often appears in contemporary polemics about the rationality of religious belief. Patristic scholars have long pointed out that Tertullian never said this or meant anything like it. (although as I have explained many times in Harmonia Philosophica, there is nothing wrong with the irrational – it is the logical which is unfounded and full of fallacies) However, little scholarly attention has been paid to the circumstances in which this specific phrase came into existence and why, in spite of its dubious provenance, it continues to be regarded by many as a legitimate characterization of religious faith. A new paper shows how Tertullian’s original expression – “It is certain, because impossible” – was first misrepresented and modified in the early modern period. In seventeenth century England a “credo” version – I believe because it is impossible – became the common form of Tertullian’s maxim. A further modification, building on the first, was effected by the Enlightenment philosophe Voltaire, who added the “absurdity condition” and gave us the modern version of the paradox: I believe because it is absurd. These modifications played a significant role in Enlightenment representations of religion as irrational, and signal the beginning of a new understanding of faith as an epistemic vice. This doubtful maxim continues to play a role in debates about the cognitive status of religious faith, and its failure to succumb to the historical evidence against it is owing to its ongoing rhetorical usefulness in such debates. (1)

People once understood the irrationality of existence.

Then they invented Logic.

And they tried to formulate logical ways to believe in God. Let’s not forget that the founder of Logic believed in the Unmoved Mover. And the second greatest logician of all times (Gödel) formulated a renowned proof for the existence of God.

Then came “Enlightenment”.

And tried to convince people that logic has nothing to do with irrational things like religion. That rational people cannot believe in absurd things like the soul, the spirit, Jesus or God.

They were both wrong.

Logic itself is absurd and irrational. Based on axioms selected arbitrarily, without any solid foundation whatsoever. The only thing we know for sure about any set of axiomatic theories – logic included – is that it cannot prove everything.

Life IS absurd and irrational. We exist without reason, we die without reason, we love and hate with no reason, we just Are. Any attempt to rationalize life will hit the wall of reality and collapse as soon as it started.

So believe what you want.

No you are not irrational.

Because there is no such thing as “rational”…

Philosophy of the Irrational!

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Harmonia Philosophica has for a long time shown the way towards irrationality. Thinking is over-rated. Non-thinking is the way to the truth! The cosmos is inherently irrational – humans cannot comprehend it via the usual “logical” tools at hand…

After all, who says that Logic is… rational?

No logical axioms can ever be proved.

So essentially, every “logical” argument is inherently illogical…

This presentation was sent to Newton Fund Conference on the Philosophies of Mind, Language & Action conference [MiLAct16], held at Sao Paulo on September 2016.

One can find a YouTube presentation here.

 

 

Knowledge is NOT power… (or: 知識は力ではありません) :)

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Taro Aso said that bankers in Japan had not been able to understand the complex financial instruments that were the undoing of major global players in the 2008 crisis, so had not bought them.

“Many people fell prey to the dubious products, or so-called subprime loans. Japanese banks were not so much attracted to these products, compared with European banks”, Mr Aso told a seminar in Tokyo.

“Managers of Japanese banks hardly understood English, that’s why they didn’t buy”, he said. [1] (!!!)

Who said knowledge is power?

In this case, LACK OF KNOWLEDGE proved life saving! 😛

> Help translate the Harmonia Philosophica book in 6 new languages and get valuable perks in return! Support the Indiegogo project now!

Ulysses, Moby Dick, Lolita v2.0

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> Help translate the Harmonia Philosophica book in 6 new languages and get valuable perks in return! Support the Indiegogo project now!

Researchers have created a program to catch pirates by their commas… to trap them with paragraph breaks.

The new program, still under development at the Darmstadt Technical University in Germany, automatically creates subtle alternative versions of an e-book by moving words around, using synonyms, or adding or removing grammatical marks, the blog Torrent Freak reports. If a pirated version of the book appears online, then publishers are able to narrow down its source by looking at which version it is. The program also creates some invisible marks to help track e-books. [1]

If publishers adopt the program, it could be part of a system that protects copyrighted works while allowing people who have bought e-books to do some small-time sharing, such as copying the book onto all of their devices.

Besides the obvious problems with the copyright and property issues (“small sharing” includes copying a book you own to other devices you own?!?), the whole concept is totally absurd. Changing a book (automatically!) for copyright reasons?

Oh, Plato! Oh, Kant! Oh, Melville! Oh, Joyce!
Come out of your graves! And kick their ass!!!

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