Do You Consider Yourself Wise?

do you consider yourself wise?

like, I consider myself wiser than the average person

meaning I search out the answers more readily

like, chase down the implications

so someone tells me my car needs a new clutch

so then afterward I’m like, “how can I change my driving habits in order to lower car maintenance costs?”

for instance, if you always keep your gas tank more than a quarter full then the fuel pump lasts longer

or regularly checking the oil

but I don’t really consider myself intelligent

I always feel confused

I mean, even the smartest mathematician is confused about some problem right?

and it will always be like that

there are infinite layers of complexity, with no final theory that explains everything

so even though I may have a few ideas that are more abstract than other peoples’

I still look at them and am unsure where to go next

well, when I write it’s not that hard, because I just put down whatever I think of, without editing

huh, I guess that’s part of why I prefer handwriting over typing: you can’t edit what you’ve written

you can scratch it out, but otherwise it’s pretty static

huh. see, this is why I love writing

always teaches me something new

but like, I teach kids

for an after-school program

and it’s just crazy to me

when they can’t yet do 6+6+6+6

and I can’t yet do vector calculus

but they will learn, and hopefully I will learn

that’s what I mean when I say I don’t feel smart

but I do feel wise

or “wiser”

because obviously you can always improve

I look at people who don’t ask for others’ ideas

like an older person’s advice

and I’m like, you’re not taking advantage of a great resource

like my friend got a moped

without talking to anyone about it

ie, older people

and they’re so dangerous

she ended up getting hurt so she sold it

cost $800

a few months later sold it for like $450

I mean, you can use “intelligent” here as the term

and that’s fairly justified

that’s why I kind of like the idea that wisdom is about chasing down implications

“intelligent” doesn’t really capture that meaning, I don’t think

also I like talking about “death”

because it’s illusion

it’s fallacy

but you kind of have to build an intricate case for why, perhaps

like, does the number 2 “die”?

and if we take it as true that the universe is physical, and physics runs on math, then can the universe “die”?

so it’s more like patterns, patterns of sensations, leave for a time

but did they “die”?

sure, in a certain sense

they’re gone

but not in principle

in principle their effects are still playing out in the world around them

like the egyptians

the ancient ones that built the pyramids

if their ideas

their creations

their buildings

if they’re still affecting us today

are those egyptians really “dead”?

sure, in some sense

but if we look at the universe

at nature

as one thing

with no division or separation

then isn’t what a person is really the bundle of ways they interact with the environment?

like how you talk, socialize, write

what you say, how you say it, what you write down

if we look at it from that angle, where what a person really is is a bundle of those patterns

like layers and layers of patterns, with no core

then is there anything that really “dies”?

like a fish in a stream

it makes a little cave by moving pebbles

then the fish dies, and another fish moves into the cave

isn’t part of the first fish still alive?

like a part of the way the first fish lived its life?

how it interacted with the environment has continued on, even after the biological form faded

this idea I think is actually meant by a “spirit”

it’s not “woo-woo”; it’s a precise mathematical way of looking at why things are the way there are

an atheist that rejects the spiritual out of hand, without realizing this fish example is essentially demonstrating the usefulness of the idea of a spirit, a higher pattern that is not limited to the physical plane, is doing themselves a disservice

it’s easier to be an atheist than a nondualist, perhaps

it’s easier, perhaps, to believe there is nothing rather than accept it all depends on the starting definitions

not that nonduality is necessarily correct

I’m just saying it’s helped me, so maybe it’ll help you

(nonduality: mind comes from body comes from nature, so really what you are is all of nature, not one lonesome human)

(nonduality can also mean that if you have two ideas there is always some way to make them consistent with each other, to find a higher idea that both will fit in)

(eg, “God” as defined as an immortal creator, but then allowing for a universe to be a computer simulation, so a being outside the simulation is immortal to the simulated beings, and can affect things however it wants)

“in essence we are ideas: patterns interacting

how does this change how you live?

it allows you to recognize that all the stories you have about who you’re supposed to be and how you’re supposed to act are made up. they aren’t set in stone, they’re just patterns that have been imprinted on you through nature and nurture

through automatic imagination you can rewrite these stories and change your reality for the better

when you realize you’re math: just patterns of neural feedback, you can accept that your senses move along sense objects like a river through a canyon. When you realize you can actually be the boat on the river watching the beauty of the landscape around you, you can detach yourself from the fruits of action and enjoy yourself more fully.”

“I believe that by accepting that nature is one thing, that God and Nature are one thing, that we, as expressions of nature, can be freed from the belief that we have to be a certain way or do certain things. We are freed from materialism, from the search for Truth, for ultimate Happiness. Instead, we live in the Now. We recognize that nature cannot violate its own order, so nothing we do can be wrong, according to nature.

Nothing we do is the wrong thing. Everything you do is exactly the right thing.”

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