Monday, July 19, 2010

Forum on Vegetarianism

Interesting forum on the environmental implications of our food choices over at Blue Marble at Mother Jones: link. The guy talking about waste was interesting, and not something I've considered before. Essentially we waste a far greater percentage of vegetative food than animal based food- more veggies than meat end up thrown out, uneaten. Overall I feel pretty secure in my stance on the issue: we should eat vastly less meat overall and that which we do eat should be sustainably raised. A diet that features a small amount of grass fed meat is ecologically superior to an exclusively plant based diet.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Feeling philosophical

There is a staggering and insidious arrogance that is indigenous to the human condition. Staggering because its scope and ambition are so great, insidious because its origins are so inseparable from the experience of being human.

Humans have an incredible ability to predict and control the world around us. It has gotten better and better over time- our knowledge of the way the world works has become increasingly robust, and our ability to leverage this knowledge to meet our own ends has enabled technological development that could have never been imagined by even our great grandparents- very near relatives given the scale of human history.

Utilization of this wondrous facility of human comprehension is not in itself arrogant. Rather, it is the assumption that is implicit in human thought- "Because so much of the world around can be broken down and understood in measurable and predictable ways, it is possible to reduce the entire universe and all of human experience into measurable and predictable truths".

This, tragically, turns into a desperate struggle for control. When the operational assumption is that everything is governed by absolute processes, be they scientific or Godly, and that it is possible to know them, the temptation to strive to master them is nearly irresistible. Complete knowledge should logically lead to complete control.

Somewhere Frodo is hiking with a ring...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Freedom from expectations

There is without question a benefit to having a blog that no one reads. I have enormous latitude in selecting what I'd like to focus on, and I don't have any audience expectations to worry about. Of course, it could make you wonder about what the point is.

Well, I suppose I'll answer that. I would, at some point, very much like to have a blog that some people do in fact read. If I were to have a number of people reading what I am writing, I'd want the time invested to be worthwhile. So, this is practice. The difficulty is to write a blog that is coherent and integrated rather than tangential and unfocused. This would be easier if I wanted to write about one thing. I want to write about many things, actually, from a variety of perspectives- personal, experiential, professional.

In a lot of ways, I find this to be the conundrum of my life. In my clearest moments, I can glimpse integration and wholeness, and briefly see the patterns of possibility that animate my hopes and dreams. And at other times, those same patterns seem lifeless, frozen and rote. They don't inspire action, they don't even inspire alertness. At these times, the mechanical nature of the taxonomic mind renders even the most inspired vision to be but an overwhelming and insignificant set of tasks.

A blog is an attempt to utilize written language to convey a perspective on a given set of topics, unfolding over time. As the unfolding occurs, I'm left wondering if I can maintain fidelity to an idea- the original word that is the name of this blog- or if in my wandering I'll become unmoored from that altogether, left to start a new blog, that I can arbitrarily set as a marker for a point that denotes leaving one set of categorical experience for another.

If I had any remaining readers, I'm sure I've lost you now.

Perhaps next time I'll revisit the concept Permavorism, and see if there is still relevance, or if I've left the virtual building.