Amartya Sen ‘Identity and Violence: The Violence of Illusion’


"Hippies weren’t really offering any alternatives other than colorful short-term ones, and some of these were looking more and more like pure degeneracy. Degeneracy can be fun but it’s hard to keep up as a serious lifetime occupation." Robert M.Pirsig ‘Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance’!A18BF3FCC5E126A2!2123.entry
Some, ‘Notes Of Dad’s’!A18BF3FCC5E126A2!3036.entry And look up more! ‘Love The One You’re With’ BBC2 TV ‘Rock Family Trees’ Series 1,2,3 "Forget the prophets of doom – I’m proud to be a baby boomer – The world is a happier place thanks to my generation, and the next will look after itself, says Boris Johnson." Saving Planet Earth – "To have a society of labourers, it is of course not necessary that every member actually be a labourer or worker, not even emancipation of the working class and its enormous potential power, which majority rule accords to is decisive here, but only that all members consider whatever they do primarily as a way to sustain their own lives and those of their families". Hannah Arendt ‘The Human Condition’. "What shall we tell the children?" Or!A18BF3FCC5E126A2!1871.entry

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts.
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are set forth.
Kahlil Gibran from ‘The Prophet’. 

Growing Up
(Science and Politics)
"No other way of knowing is based on a set of rules explicitly designed to transcend the prior belief systems of mutually antagonistic tribes, nations, classes, and ethnic and religious communities in order to arrive at knowledge that is equally probable for any rational human mind. Those who doubt that science can do this must be made to show that some other tolerant and ecumenical alternative can do it better. Unless they can show how some other universalistic system of knowing leads to more acceptable criteria of truth, their attempt to subvert the universal credibility of science in the name of cultural relativism, however well-intentioned, is an intellectual crime against humanity. It is a crime against humanity because the real alternative to science is not anarchy, but ideology; not peaceful artists, philosophers, and anthropologists, but aggressive fanatics and messiahs eager to annihilate each other and the whole world if need be in order to prove their point." Marvin Harris (1979a, 27-28) "Harris has consistently argued that the compelling reason for developing science of culture is to provide guidelines for action directed at fundamental social problems, and to discover effective humane alternatives to the brutal and dehumanizing consequences of systems taking their own course. If our science is still rudimentary, that is all the more reason to try harder." "A few scientists follow their religious beliefs rather than the scientific method. Biological evolution is just one of the most important of many broad issues on which substantially all working scientists agree. There may be a few persons with scientific credentials who disagree, but they do not contribute to the progress that is the hallmark of science. It is not simply that these dissenters are wrong, because wrong answers can sometimes stimulate controversy that helps lead to correct answers." 
Rather, as the physicist Wolfgang Pauli liked to say, "They are not even wrong. That is, their arguments are useless and even detrimental to the pursuit of further knowledge."" Religious Education (RE) Dorset For You. SALED, NASACRE, SACRE. RE Search – Agreed Syllabus. "Children, I’ll argue, have a human right not to have their minds crippled by exposure to other people’s bad ideas – no matter who these other people are. Parents, correspondingly, have no god-given licence to enculturate their children in whatever ways they personally choose: no right to limit the horizons of their children’s knowledge, to bring them up in an atmosphere of dogma and superstition, or to insist they follow the straight and narrow paths of their own faith. In short, children have a right not to have their minds addled by nonsense. And we as a society have a duty to protect them from it. So we should no more allow parents to teach their children to believe, for example, in the literal truth of the Bible, or that the planets rule their lives, than we should allow parents to knock their children’s teeth out or lock them in a dungeon." ‘What Shall We Tell The Children?’ ‘Amnesty Lecture’ Oxford – Nicholas Humphrey.
"The truths contained in religious doctrines are after all so distorted and systematically disguised (for any rational human mind – above)," writes Sigmund Freud, "That the mass of humanity cannot recognize them as truth. The case is similar to what happens when we tell a child that new born babies are brought by the stork. Here, too, we are telling truth in symbolic clothing, for we know what a large bird signifies. But the child does not know it. He hears only the distorted part of what we say, and feels that he has been deceived; and we know how often his distrust of the grown-ups and his refractoriness actually take their start from this impression. We have become convinced that it is better to avoid such symbolic disguisings of the truth in what we tell children and not to withhold from them a knowledge of the true state of affairs commensurate with their intellectual level". Global Gullibility ‘For Dawkins, religious gullibility is not only an illustration of, but may be a precursor to, a more global form of gullibility. As he said, if you can believe “something as daft as the transubstantiation [then] you can believe anything", and (witness the story of Doubting Thomas) these people are trained to see that as a virtue” (p. 141). In other words, training children to accept nonsensical religious notions may predispose them to accept all kinds of other nonsense with a similar blind trust.’ Global Gullibility Index. Ref, Amartya Sen the above lecture, and varying degrees of religiosity that would hold true for the majority of Christians, Muslims and Jews (‘true’ or fundamental beliefs of the leaders, dogmas and goals being so disconnected for any rational mind, preposterousness) so on…, "What I concluded was that this was not a body of believers (in the church), but a body of behavers. Each week people showed up, sat where they should, performed their roles, and the church went on, despite the disparity of belief. Behaviour was observable and predictable; meaning, at least in the sense of Christian belief, was multiple and somehow beyond the point of what held things together." ‘Infrastructural Determinism’ R. Brian Ferguson – writing on, ‘The Nature of Cultural Things’ Marvin Harris. "Freedom must be taught, because conformism and not freedom is natural. Most education is directed to producing conditioned and behaving animals." Forster, p123.  Why do a lot of young people self-harm? Young people & self harm – Child Development Centre, Poole General Hospital Moved to: And, Margaret Singer Ph.D. "Six Conditions for Thought Reform".
"A new hard hitting advertising campaign starts today to help reduce the number of teenage girls who suffer domestic violence at the hands of their boyfriends. It comes after NSPCC researchers found an alarming number of youngsters believe physical and emotional abuse is normal within relationships." "The number of young people admitted to hospital after cutting themselves deliberately is up by more than 50% in five years, according to new figures."  – And, be aware of Stanley Milgram  "A controversial TV documentary in France shows people who think they are taking part in a game show, administering what they believe are near-lethal electric shocks to their rival contestants. Producers of the spoof game show wanted to see if people would act against their own principles when a reality TV host asked them to do something. Emma Jane Kirby, reports."
Religious Education (RE) Dorset For You. SALED, NASACRE, SACRE. RE Search – Agreed Syllabus – PSHE & Educational & Health Propaganda (Behaviourism’s, working amongst young in ‘reverse mode’ – ‘exposure’ & ‘reverse psychology’) The amazing amount of superstition (at a very young age), with the consequential lacking of Philosophy as a ‘Subject’ in Education, ‘proper’ science that is not muddled with RE, so on…The disconnection of ‘ancient and core-beliefs’ (of most, Authorities), with (normal) everyday life, in a modern enlightened, scientific and knowledge based culture. Ref, ‘countless experiments in our cousins the apes (Primates): appalling neophobia as a very strong urge in humans – Education Systems UK and Authorities, "Calls to raise the age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 12 have been rejected by the government."
‘Knowledge or Certainty’ & ‘The Ascent of Man’ Jacob Bronowski Education UK, GB – 20 to 30 yrs out of date, ‘Cultural Relativism’
The best answer to most types of violence: person to person; violence that is perpetrated against (adult) sexual privacy by any Authority, in the private choices ‘person to persons’ and most forms of domestic violence. Peace and Love! "More than 5,000 people have shed their clothing on the steps of the Sydney Opera House to pose for a photograph by the American artist Spencer Tunick."
Authoritative violence or denial –!A18BF3FCC5E126A2!1531.entry 

There is a school of thought that holds that no person is evil, that only acts may be properly considered evil. Psychologist and mediator Marshall Rosenberg claims that the root of violence is the very concept of "evil" or "badness." When we label someone as bad or evil, Rosenberg claims, it invokes the desire to punish or inflict pain. It also makes it easy for us to turn off our feelings towards the person we are harming. He cites the use of language in Nazi Germany as being a key to how the German people were able to do things to other human beings that they normally wouldn’t do. He links the concept of evil to our judicial system, which seeks to create justice via punishment — "punitive justice" — punishing acts that are seen as bad or wrong. He contrasts this approach with what he found in cultures where the idea of evil was non-existent. In such cultures, when someone harms another person, they are believed to be out of harmony with themselves and their community, they are seen as sick or ill and measures are taken to restore them to a sense of harmonious relations with themselves and others, as opposed to punishing them. Psychologist Albert Ellis makes a similar claim, in his school of psychology called Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy or REBT. He says the root of anger, and the desire to harm someone, is almost always one of these beliefs:

  1. That they should/shouldn’t have done certain things
  2. That someone is an awful/bad/horrible person for doing what they did
  3. That they deserve to be punished for what they did

He claims that without one of the preceding thoughts, violence is next to impossible.

And, Spencer Tunick "Hundreds of volunteers have stripped naked for a public photo shoot marking the 10th anniversary of the Lowry art gallery in Salford." "A relationship counsellor’s bid to challenge his sacking for refusing to give sex therapy to gay couples has been turned down by the High Court. Gary McFarlane."
The continuing evolution of humankind – from Homo sapien to Homo interneticus – ‘The Virtual Revolution’

The curious case of Sex, Faith and Government Denial

We’ve been working hard on the Children, Schools and Families Bill, especially on PSHE, which includes Sex and Relationships Education (SRE). Ken Purchase MP, member of the All Party Parliamentary Humanist Group, had already tabled amendments to the Bill to make it even stronger and that sought to promote children’s rights, to stop parents being able to withdraw their children from SRE, and to ensure that all schools must teach PSHE in ways that promote equality and diversity. Although they didn’t pass, there was a lot of support from MPs for our position.

So we were aghast last week when we noticed that the Government had tried to slip through a last minute amendment of its own. This amendment effectively exempts “faith schools” from having to teaching SRE accurately, in ways that are balanced, promote equality and respect for diversity, and reflect different views. This was a u-turn from the original commitment in the Bill.

Together with the Accord Coalition and the Children’s Rights Alliance for England (CRAE), the BHA broke the story to the press, with a fantastic response in the broadsheets, online and broadcast media. Andrew’s article on the Guardian’s Comment is Free site remained in the top most-viewed articles for days!

Within hours, the Government had “tweeted” its denial that it was making such disgraceful concessions to religious groups (the Catholic Education Service had taken the credit for this amendment being tabled). It then made formal responses to our condemnation of its proposals in the papers and on Radio 4’s Today. None of their excuses held up to the reality that their amendment did not just “clarify” the law but significantly changed it in favour of faith schools and against the rights of children and parents to have full SRE taught.

It wasn’t just us, or even our allies in Accord and CRAE, that made the difference. Well over 1000 (over 700 in the first 24 hours!) of you responded to our special e-bulletin asking you to use our facility, set-up exclusively to allow you to email your MPs and ask them to oppose the Government’s move. That is the kind of joint-working that forced the Government to make a statement in the House of Commons about the subject, and although their amendment has gone through we will continue to fight for its removal, and the huge public support and media coverage our actions precipitated have been a powerful statement in themselves.

luckyme0: Selfish downing, Britain by Catholic Church. Cathnik (Beatniks of Equality Bill) Parliament Party And, luckyme0: A message to the Bishops in the House of Lords to become part of our modern democracy, or get out of it! And, "The Pope not only opposes the right of women to have an abortion but also their right to contraception to prevent the need for abortions. He also opposes women’s access to IVF fertility treatment to give childless couples the chance of parenthood. He condemns potentially life-saving embryonic stem cell research. Pope Benedict denounces the use of condoms, even to stop the spread of HIV, as well as claiming falsely that condom usage “increases” the rate of HIV infection. This puts millions of lives at risk. He opposes legal equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, and their full protection in law against homophobic and transphobic discrimination. The Pope has authorised the Catholic Catechism, which condemns same-sex relationships as a “grave depravity” and “contrary to natural law.” In 1992, he criticised gay sexuality as a “tendency ordered towards an intrinsic moral evil.” While condemning loving, consenting adult same-sex relations, the Pope played a role in shielding Catholic clergy guilty of child sex abuse from prosecution, as revealed in the 2006 BBC Panorama programme, Sex crimes and the Vatican." "Pope Benedict has written a pastoral letter to the Catholics of Ireland with guidelines on preventing and punishing sexual abuse of children by priests. Or, Trevor Baylis, the inventor of the wind-up radio, has revealed that he was sexually abused by a curate at an Anglican church as a child. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Broadcasting House, he described how he thought he had been taking part in a "religious ritual", and called the man responsible for his abuse "absolute scum". The Catholic church has been hit by revelations of child sex abuse in a number of countries recently, with the Pope apologising to victims of abuse in a pastoral letter to Irish Catholics.

Protest the Pope!


The Pope is planning to visit the UK on a Papal visit later this year.  The Pope’s opposition to women’s reproductive rights, gay equality, embryonic stem cell research and the use of condoms to prevent the spread of HIV has a huge effect on the human rights of millions of people across the globe. We want to make sure that the UK government understands our concerns, takes the opportunity to speak out against these practices and does not make the taxpayer cover the cost of the visit. You can:   Sign a petition calling on the Prime Minister to act      Join the facebook group on this issue

The politicisation of parenting is damaging family relations and education, an academic has warned. Professor of sociology Frank Furedi said there was a pervading prejudice that virtually all of society’s problems were caused by poor parenting." Education UK, GB – 20 to 30 yrs out of date, ‘Cultural Relativism’ For my children – "The world free of demons and full of light" (for the grandson of) Carl Sagan ‘The Demon-Haunted World’. ‘Without a map orientation is impossible’ Russell – ‘What shall we tell the children?’-

Love, Sex, and God. 

The only thing we can do is to hazard a hypothesis, to create a mythological figure, call it Human Personality, and hope that circumstances will not, by destroying us, prove our imaginative guesswork too hopelessly wrong. But myth for myth, Human Personality is preferable to God. We do at least know something of Human Personality, whereas of God we know nothing and, knowing nothing, are at liberty to invent as freely as we like. If men had always tried to deal with the problem of love in terms of known human rather than of grotesquely imagined divine interests, there would have been less `making of eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake, less persecution of ‘sinners’, less burning and imprisoning of the heretics of ‘unnatural’ love, less Grundyism, less Comstockery, and, at the same time, less dirty Don-Juanism, less of that curiously malignant and vengeful love-making so characteristic of the debauchee under a Christian dispensation. Reacting against the absurdities of the old mythology, the young have run into absurdities no less inordinate at the other end of the scale. A sordid and ignoble realism offers no resistance to the sexual impulse, which now spends itself purposelessly, without producing love, or even, in the long run, amusement, without enhancing vitality or quickening and deepening the rhythms of living. Only a new mythology of nature, such as, in modern times, Blake, Robert Burns, and Lawrence have defined it, an untranscendental and (relatively speaking) realistic mythology of Energy, Life, and Human Personality, will provide, it seems to me, the inward resistances necessary to turn sexual impulse into love, and provide them in a form which the critical intelligence of post-Nietzschean youth can respect. By means of such a conception a new fashion in love may be created, a mode more beautiful and convenient, more healthful and elegant, than any seen among men since the days of remote and pagan antiquity. ‘Do What You Will’ (1929) Aldous Huxley. Ref, create: ‘Global Love Index’ – Viagra for Warlords ‘Global Web Index’ & ‘Social Web Involvement’ Global interconnectedness is lethal against mass religions, nationalism, racism, sexism, and other destructive memeplexes. Let us connect everybody; they hate it in restrictive regimes and many organisations, including religions, as they see their power and their people move away from the many tentacle like grasps.

"The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) must close at the end of 2011 for up to a year to address design issues, according to an LHC director."

‘World’s Apart’. "US Vice-President Joe Biden says there must be no delay in resuming Mid-East peace talks, despite a row over Israeli plans for new homes in East Jerusalem." "Brutalizing Palestinian Children – by Stephen Lendman. As an isolated incident, it would be appalling and criminal. As a regular occurrence, it’s state-sponsored terrorism against defenceless children, subjected to barbarism by Israeli soldiers committing crimes against humanity to crush their will for wanting to live free on their own land – what Westerners take for granted; what Palestinians since 1948 haven’t had, and since 1967, under military occupation denying their very humanity."

Hi, I just sent a message to the Bishops in the House of Lords calling on them to provide principled leadership to take us through our current political crisis. You should ask them too: Thanks! I support the Power Pledge because it is an advance (a growing up) of the relationship between science (anthropology, infrastructural determinism, globalization and interconnectedness, by it’s very reasoning leading to greater egalitarianism and redistribution – hopefully, within the scientific based restraints that is set by our Earth’s vulnerability, climatic, and those of its limits to many basic resources) and politics.

"Tributes have been paid to the Labour MP Ashok Kumar, who has been found dead in his home, aged 53. Mr Kumar was also a supporter of the British Humanist Association. Chief executive Andrew Copson said: "Ashok was especially interested in education, and was opposed to the divisive and discriminatory faith schools system, preferring inclusive schools and objective religious education, not religious instruction. "In fact, Ashok spoke of the dangers of segregation and religious indoctrination consistently over the last decade, and in almost every Education Bill.""

OOOO! There is a difference, and letting the side down! Monkeys pay more attention to females than to males, according to research. Scientists studying wild vervet monkeys in South Africa found that the animals were better able to learn a task when it was demonstrated by a female. Ref, Mothers are better at helping children with prep and homework; women are better teachers, but can be ‘toxic’ to boys. "Females are core group members with higher social status than males, and more knowledge about food resources in the home range," explained Ms van de Waal. She said the results revealed valuable insights into "the evolution of traditions and culture in species living in stable groups, including humans". "To our knowledge, [this is] the first experimental field evidence for social learning in primates," she added. ‘Boys, brains and toxic lessons’ Feminism and Antiscience ‘Science, Materialism, And The Study Of Culture’, "The corpus of positivist-scientist theories about gender issues was impoverished when not counterfactual prior to the rise of feminism. Feminists, therefore, tended to identify science with androcentrism. They saw scientific theories as male concoctions designed to confuse and disempower women (Gross and Levitt 1994, 108ff.)." Ref, Amazing amount of ‘superstition’ and religiosity in Primary Education UK, which I thought, was purely down to the, ‘wonders of the new-born’ – parent and teachers alike; gullibility, and invasive Church – Religion / religious – cultural propaganda, so on…, ‘feminisation in the nursery’, because of the inherent belief (Catholic Church, its appalling record and its involvement in Education UK, and the prevalence of child abuse of the 1950’s and 1960s’, and many other times in the past) in male wickedness, Original Sin – sexual, or otherwise. ‘The Genius of Charles Darwin’ Richard Dawkins. Channel 4 – TV. "Poor Richard Dawkins. He took a bunch of kids from a school science class to the seaside to collect fossils, hoping to enthuse them about evolution and to persuade those who were afflicted by religion to think again. There’s the problem. How can you think again, when you haven’t done much thinking in the first place? Dawkins waved his hand at the cliffs, mentioning how many million years ago they’d have been under water, while one or two of the kids seemed to be wondering where Adam and Eve fitted into this story". Sexism and sexualisation (Bible) in the Nursery Shool UK.  ‘Are You Even Half Educated. Not Totally Stunted Just Ignorant’ – Hardly any of our country’s schools give our children more than the haziest outline of the history of our planet. Because ignorance is such a delicate exotic fruit and like all fruits a means of dispersal the ignorance fosters itself. This is why the almost complete absence of Geology from Schools continues to be accepted with such phlegm by the Great British Public. They have never heard of it. However it seems to me that where the planet came from, how long it took to get here, what happened on the way, and how life evolved on it, is every bit as serious as the parallelogram of forces, the properties of nitrates, the manufacturing out put of Sweden or the interior decor of some luckless earthworm. Geology faces issues which other sciences cannot reach. Asks some of the profoundest questions humankind can ask. Questions that cannot be answered anywhere else. Without at least outline knowledge of its tenants, no one in this century can consider themselves even half-educated." An extract from an article by Ted Nield in ‘New Scientist’ 6 March 1986 – Read, ‘The Earth’ or ‘Life’ Richard Fortey.

40 Years Of Foreign Aid – Ring Fenced "The tragedy of aid, as been shown in numerous evaluations and by World Bank research, is that donors are part of the problem of corruption; aid often underpins corruption, and higher aid levels tend to erode the governance structure of poor countries." Childcare UK – Not Ring Fenced (appalling)

About luckyme0

My First family, second marriage, bringing up my 18-year-old twins, boy, and girl. I am a third generation Humanist, who has some old handwritten information and notes; collected over many years. Someone may find the articles interesting, or helpful. They could bring back a little ‘reality’, after being ‘shocked’ and ‘brainwashed’, by some malicious group, or institution (REBT Therapy). People should know better, than to do this, to our very young, and the ‘obviously’ vulnerable! Go to easily accessible, non-superstitious knowledge that is not charlatanism! The blog has given me an incentive to order my thoughts, learn, and read up again, after a few non-thinking years of (very silly) imagination and passion. Why not, get your own key to a ‘door’, customise it to suit you, and it can be, all of your very own! Don’t believe, or be led by someone else’s; inherited, stupid, and a very likely (past, and not of today’s) ‘totally preposterous reality’s’. Only some interest in the ‘really big questions’, keeps life above the level of a farce, and very little else! KEEP THINKING! Some of the posts may need some correcting. Interests: REBT Counselling, Atheism, Secularism, Humanism, Psychology, Reading, Popular Science, School Ethos, Philosophy, History, Family, Parenting, Psychology, Horse Riding, Sailing, Rescue Boat Driver, Skiing (Teppichswinger), TV Documentaries, Motorbike Cross Country Riding, Volunteer Sports Stewarding, Writing, Primitive Man, Pre-history, Social Anthropology, British Humanist Association, BHA, Meaning of Life, The Big Questions, Where am I, What am I, Why am I, Hippie Love, Knowledge, Education, Globalisation. Favorite quote: “The world belongs to those who, at least to some degree, have figured it out.” Carl Sagan, ‘The Demon Haunted World’, ‘Contact’, and other famous books DVD ‘Cosmos’. The warning of another and horrendous, “Age of Superstition”. “Isn’t there something deeply absurd in the presumption that children ought to inherit beliefs from their parents. It can be deeply damaging, even lethally divisive. A ‘them’, with an ‘against us’, mentality” – Professor Richard Dawkins. “The will to believe is stronger than mere reason in the vast majority of people” – Dr J.Brown, Army Psychologist of the 1960′s. Humans will believe in almost anything, in fact, they seek it! Why? “98% of us, trained to be just good consumers, let’s train our children to be the 2% who have their very own creativity and discernment”; quote by a famous surreal artist. “The lack of reason brings forth monsters”. “Global interconnectedness is lethal against mass religion, nationalism, racism, and other destructive memeplexes. Let us connect everybody they hate it in restrictive regimes”; from the ‘meme learning group’, Richard Brodie’s book, ‘Virus Of The Mind’ (Richard Brodie a designer for ‘Microsoft Word’). Following on, J.Bronowski, and ‘The Ascent Of Man’ TV series, and a book with the last DVD in this series, ‘The Long Childhood’ being especially revealing. ‘Prehistory’ and the ‘Making of the Human Mind’ by Colin Renfrew, with P.Wilson’s, ‘The Domestication of the Human Species’, and Nigel Spivey’s, TV series and book, ‘How Art Made The World’, offers some further explanations. Latest reading: Jared Diamond
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