Tuesday, November 22, 2011

On the Nature of Society

The Dialogues of Jeff & Kim: On the Nature of Society
by Alraune

Our conversation continues in the small apartment occupied by our young couple, somewhere in Pennsylvania.

Kim: Here is another mass-produced beer.

Jeff: Thank you.

Kim: Since you claim the way things are run are so horrible, why don't you just make your own home-brewed beer and be a small bug in the system?

Jeff: You make an excellent point, and I move closer every day to implementing such things, but the fact of the matter is (for example), if enough people simply made their own beer, the people for which this society was truly designed and intended to benefit would outlaw the making of such. They'd never allow it if it really threatened their money and their power.

Kim: I don't know about these elite people you speak of, but I think you are probably correct in thinking that someone (probably the major beer manufacturers) would push to outlaw home-brewing if it got to be a threat to their profits.

Jeff: Yes. Thankfully it is not a threat because it costs too much, so if one chooses they may take that route, at least as things currently stand.

Kim: But couldn't we just say that they dominate because they make a good product for cheap and so people are willing to pay for it?

Jeff: Yes we could, and I would go for that, but the fact of the matter is that corporations and individualsI'm not really speaking about beer right now—still use government to make profits by outlawing things or suppressing things, and that is not right. It is no longer the law of supply and demand when they use their money and power to squash the competition.

Kim: Yes. I suppose you are right.

Jeff: Such people are no longer playing by the rules of supply and demand, but instead are trying to cheat the game by buying off the referee. And that speaks directly to why I say society is not designed to benefit us, but to benefit a small few.

Kim: So are you going to tell me what society is supposed to be for and why it is not being used for that purpose already, or are you going to make me wait all day?

Jeff: Yes. I will. Now, what did we say the purpose of man was?

Kim: If by the purpose of man, you mean our purpose as humans in this life..."The purpose of this life is to sustain our existence in the least intrusive manner necessary in order to attain the greatest possible abundance of personal and communal experiences of a positive nature."

Jeff: And by the “least intrusive manner necessary” we mean "the least intrusive manner of necessary self-sustainment,” correct?

Kim: Yes.

Jeff: Well, society has no useful purpose to any individual human being unless it is purposed to aid in the acquisition of the purpose of man; that purpose being what we just cited.

Kim: So you are saying that the purpose of society is also to sustain our existence in the least intrusive manner necessary in order to help attain the greatest possible abundance of personal and communal experiences of a positive nature?

Jeff: Yes, that is precisely what I am saying.

Kim: Well, wouldn't progress be part of that?

Jeff: Yes it would.

Kim: Then I do not see what your problem is. I mean, I understand there are imperfections which need fixed, but you claim the entire thing is broken and never was intended for that. I just don't see it. Furthermore, it seems kind of hypocritical for you to be accusing society of all these wrongs while sitting in a house, drinking a beer, sitting on a chair, and listening to the radio.

Jeff: Look. Just because some dude who works for a major radio or television station tells you something, you shouldn't just go out and repeat it, because frankly, that's what that accusation of "hypocrasy" of your's just was, and we both know it. I am not saying the things we produce are wrong. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with that. I am saying it is how we obtain them and who benefits that is wrong. Furthermore, so long as I or anyone else has no choice in the matter, arguing that I utilize things made in the system is a meaningless argument.

Kim: You do so have a choice!

Jeff: Tell me, I'd love to hear.

Kim: Just leave. Drop out of society if you don't like it!

Jeff: And be arrested as a criminal, a vagrant, or mentally ill. Yeah, sure. Because that's leaving it. Having society come and lock you away for refusing to be part of it is hardly what I call a choice.

Kim: Well, then move to another country.

Jeff: It's all the same wherever you go. Different governments and cultures, but the same system. There is no where to go, Kim, so don't play that card. The fact is, I don't have a choice, and neither do you.

Kim: You're sounding like an anarchist again.

Jeff: What is it going to take to get through your head that I am not bashing your precious television or your running water or any of that? It's the root purpose of it all, don't you get that? I'm saying it is what stands at the heart, not what you see on the surface. I don't hate society, I despise the wrongful and manipulative purpose it is used and intended for.

Kim: So you want society to fall?

Jeff: No.

Kim: Then what do you want? You are confusing the hell out of me.

Jeff: That's because you are giving me all your pre-programmed defenses before you even bother to hear what I'm actually going to say. It's alright. You can get them all out and then we can have an actual conversation.

Kim: Don't do that to me.

Jeff: What?

Kim: Your "you are being programmed" hoo-dee-do. Don't even start.

Jeff: Fine. I am sorry if I offended you. I just want to speak without being labelled an "anarchist" or accused of hypocrasy or any number of things. Can we debate the matter and both leave attacks on the messenger out of it?

Kim: Yes. Let's do that.

Jeff: Fine. So tell me then who you think society is supposed to benefit?

Kim: I suppose the majority.

Jeff: And why so?

Kim: Because you can't make everyone happy, so the best thing would seem to be that society should seek to aid the purpose of this life by doing what is best for the majority.

Jeff: So if you believe society is supposed to benefit the majority, then why do you suppose anyone would "sign-up" for it, knowing that sooner or later they would not be in that majority?

Kim: Well, maybe it's not supposed to only benefit the majority then. If the purpose of each and everyone of us is to live as long as possible in order to have as many positive experiences as possible, in the least intrusive way, then I don't see how anyone in their right mind would want to be part of something which only benefited the majority, since you are correct. Sooner or later you will not be in that majority, and the benefits do not necessarily outweigh the negatives if the majority chooses to benefit itself in a way that greatly screws you.

Jeff: Like taking their tanks and their bombs and blowing people up so they can heat their homes in the winter?

Kim: Yeah.

Jeff: And maybe locking you away "just in case" because they just so happen to be blowing up your grandparents over in some foreign country where you originally immigrated from?

Kim: Yes.

Jeff: Or maybe taking your children because you smoke pot, and the majority don't think you should?

Kim: Well yeah, but the majority don't care if people smoke pot.

Jeff: Which would be evidence of why society is not meant to benefit the majority.

Kim: But it can't be intended to benefit the minority, because that's just as bad as benefiting the majority! Society should be in place to benefit the whole.

Jeff: Now we're cooking! It is my belief that the purpose of society is to aid in the sustainment of the existence of the whole of its members, in the least intrusive manner necessary, in order to help as many of its members as possible (all preferably) attain the greatest possible abundance of personal and communal experiences of a positive nature. And if possible, to improve upon the ways in which it seeks to carry out that mission.

Kim: Okay. I can agree with that, and I knew that's what you were eventually going to say, but how is our society (or any society for that matter) not doing that?

Jeff: Well, first let's look at how society aims to achieve anything in the first place. Our civilization, our society, is made up of four great pillars: economy, government, morality (or religion), and science and the arts as well as the dissemination of them (ie. education, language, etc.). Those four things are the tools any civilization uses to achieve its purposes.

Kim: Okay. Now, I'm not accusing you of being an anarchist, but are you suggesting that we should do away with those things?

Jeff: No.

Kim: Good.

Jeff: But I am suggesting they are all used improperly and that is why the world is screwed up. I would also suggest a complete revamping of the pillar of economy. I would not recommend any economic system that currently floats around out there as a solution (especially socialism). I would suggest something entirely different. Furthermore, I would state that the heart of the problem I speak of is that economy, government, religion, and the arts and sciences, particularly the dissemination of them via education, are all used to control us in a very intrusive, ignorant, and malicious manner.

Kim: That's quite the statement. What do you have to back it up?

Jeff: How about two very well respected and prominent philosophers, just for starters.

Jeff reaches for his cell phone and thumbs through it.

Jeff: Here's Socrates...I'll read to you directly from Plato's Republic. Socrates is speaking with Glaucon.

Socrates: And how can marriages be made most beneficial? That is a question which I put to you, because I see in your house dogs for hunting, and of the nobler sort of birds not a few. Now, I beseech you, do tell me, have you ever attended to their pairing and breeding?

Glaucon: In what particulars?

Socrates: Why, in the first place, although they are all of a good sort, are not some better than others?

Glaucon: True.

Socrates: And do you breed from them all indifferently, or do you take care to breed from the best only?

Glaucon: From the best.

Socrates: And do you take the oldest or the youngest, or only those of ripe age?

Glaucon: I choose only those of ripe age.

Socrates: And if care was not taken in the breeding, your dogs and birds would greatly

Glaucon: Certainly.

Socrates: And the same of horses and of animals in general?

Glaucon: Undoubtedly.

Socrates: Good heavens! My dear friend, I said, what consummate skill will our rulers need if the same principle holds of the human species!

Glaucon: Certainly, the same principle holds; but why does this involve any particular skill?

Socrates: Because, I said, our rulers will often have to practise upon the body corporate with medicines. Now you know that when patients do not require medicines, but have only to be put under a regimen, the inferior sort of practitioner is deemed to be good enough; but when medicine has to be given, then the doctor should be more of a man.

Glaucon: That is quite true, he said; but to what are you alluding?

Socrates: I mean, I replied, that our rulers will find a considerable dose of falsehood and deceit necessary for the good of their subjects: we were saying that the use of all these things regarded as medicines might be of advantage.

Glaucon: And we were very right.

Socrates: And this lawful use of them seems likely to be often needed in the regulations of
marriages and births.

Glaucon: How so?

Socrates: Why, I said, the principle has been already laid down that the best of either sex should be united with the best as often, and the inferior with the inferior as seldom, as possible; and that they should rear the offspring of the one sort of union, but not of the other, if the flock is to be maintained in first-rate condition. Now these goings on must be a secret which the rulers only know, or there will be a further danger of our herd, as the guardians may be termed, breaking out into rebellion.

Glaucon: Very true.

Socrates: Had we better not appoint certain festivals at which we will bring together the brides and bridegrooms, and sacrifices will be offered and suitable hymeneal songs composed by our poets: the number of weddings is a matter which must be left to the discretion of the rulers, whose aim will be to preserve the average of population? There are many other things which they will have to consider, such as the effects of wars and diseases and any similar agencies, in order as far as this is possible to prevent the State from becoming either too large or too small.

Glaucon: Certainly, he replied.

Socrates: We shall have to invent some ingenious kind of lots which the less worthy may draw on each occasion of our bringing them together, and then they will accuse their own ill-luck and not the rulers.

Glaucon: To be sure, he said.

Kim: Oh my God! That sounds like eugenics. And what was that about using medicines on the general public and lying about it? And that stuff about festivals and sacrifices and the pairing of the less worthy with the less worthy. That's not freedom! That's total control.

Jeff: Oh, you're quick. But hold it there one second. Allow me to quote a man who is considered one of the greatest philosophers of modern time. I am sure you have heard of Bertrand Russell, the man who wrote A History of Western Philosophy?

Kim: Yeah. I know who that is.

Jeff: Here's Bertrand Russell in his book, The Impact of Science on Society, where he says on pages 49-50: "Scientific societies are as yet in their infancy...It is to be expected that advances in physiology and psychology will give governments much more control over individual mentality than they now have even in totalitarian countries. Fitche [Fitche, as you know, was a prominent philosopher of the German Idealist school, and a proponent of German nationalism] laid it down that education should aim at destroying free will, so that, after pupils have left school, they shall be incapable, throughout the rest of their lives, of thinking or acting otherwise than as their schoolmasters would have wished."

"Diet, injections, and injunctions will combine, from a very early age, to produce the sort of character and the sort of beliefs that the authorities consider desirable, and any serious criticism of the powers that be will become psychologically impossible."

"Gradually, by selective breeding, the congenital differences between rulers and ruled will increase until they become almost different species. A revolt of the plebs would become as unthinkable as an organized insurrection of sheep against the practice of eating mutton."

Kim: Holy s!

Jeff: Hold on. I'm not done yet. Here's Mr. Russell in his book, The Scientific Outlook, "In like manner, the scientific rulers will provide one kind of education for ordinary men and women, and another for those who are to become holders of scientific power. Ordinary men and women will be expected to be docile, industrious, punctual, thoughtless, and contented. Of these qualities, probably contentment will be considered the most important. In order to produce it, all the researches of psycho-analysis, behaviorism, and biochemistry will be brought into play...All the boys and girls will learn from an early age to be what is called 'co-operative,' i.e., to do exactly what everybody is doing. Initiative will be discouraged in these children, and insubordination, without being punished, will be scientifically trained out of them."

"Except for the one matter of loyalty to the World State and to their own order, members of the governing class will be encouraged to be adventurous and full of initiative..."

"On the rare occasions, when a boy or girl who has passed the age at which it is usual to determine social status shows marked ability as to seem the intellectual equal of the rulers, a difficult situation will arise, requiring serious consideration. If the youth is content to abandon his previous associates and to throw in his lot whole-heartedly with the rulers, he may, after suitable tests, be promoted, but if he shows any regrettable solidarity with his previous associates, the rulers will reluctantly conclude that there is nothing to be done with him except to send him to the lethal chamber before his ill-disciplined intelligence has had time to spread revolt. This will be a painful duty to the rulers, but I think they will not shrink from performing it."

Kim: Did he just say they need to kill anyone who gets too smart for their breeches?

Jeff: Yes. That is exactly what he said.

Kim: Okay. I'll have to let these quotes you just read me sink in for a little bit. That's some pretty wild stuff. I can hardly believe such prominent and well-respected men really said those things. And to think, so much of our modern society is based upon and shaped around the ideas of these men.

Jeff: Precisely my point.

Kim: But just because they said some crazy things doesn't mean we are really doing them, does it?

Jeff: Just because Socrates and Russell actually did make those statements, does not mean they are being implemented, but they are being implemented nonetheless. However, that is not the point I am trying to make anyway, so it doesn't matter whether you believe those things are actually being carried out or not (although they are and have been for quite some time, and I urge you to research the matter for yourself). Those quotes were read to you to give you a glimpse of those things, but more importantly to show you that our society, our civilization, is a well-thought-out machine. It is planned and ordered, and neither you nor I are anywhere near those who do the actually planning and running of society. Furthermore, if you read the works of those who mold and shape society with their philosophical arguments, you will see that the four pillars we spoke of are not used to achieve the ends we stated society should seek to achieve. Society is not for the benefit of the whole, it is for the benefit of the guys up top.

Kim: I think you are hitting me with too much at once, Jeff. Let's stop for a little bit, maybe even call it a night. I really need to let this stuff sink in.

Jeff: Okay.

Kim: You'd better stay here tonight. You've been drinking for quite a while now, and you look like you are ripped out of your mind.

Jeff: It's the only way to live.

Kim: Alright then. Let's crash out and we can continue this discussion tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

On the Purpose of Man Part 2

The Dialogues of Jeff & Kim: On the Purpose of Man Part 2
by Alraune

Our young couple is just beginning a brief exercise in personal enjoyment when Kim interrupts.

Kim: Wait a minute! I think I want to tackle the issue of what it means to prolong your life so that you can have as many positive experiences in this life as possible for as long as possible.

Jeff: Ok. I'd love to hear it. This means I get to be the critic, right?

Kim: Yeah sure... I mean, I think I agree that our purpose in this life, barring any metaphysical explanation, is to have as many positive experiences as possible. Actually, I kind of like that, because you sort of rationalized the old saying, "If it feels good, do it." Now I can give people an explanation for my philosophy on life both from my heart and from my mind. I think I like that.

Jeff: Well you're welcome. I didn't arrive at that conclusion because I wanted too, but because it was the best I could do outside of metaphysical explanations. Granted it sounds alright, but you have to admit it seems sort of pointless in the grand scope of things if we don't turn to metaphysics to give the "what" a deeper meaning through the reason "why".

Kim: Agreed. However, I think we should take this as far as we can go without getting metaphysical because it keeps us honest, and we don't bring any preconceived prejudices to our questions. Like what you were saying, how both religionists and physicalists alike seem to base their philosophies of what this life is for and how one should act upon their preconceived notions on what exactly death is and whether or not there is an afterlife or such a thing as universal and equal justice.

Jeff: Yes. I agree. It is people who are overzealous about their belief concerning what happens at death or afterward who seem to kill the most people without hesitation. Consider the crusades, the inquisition, modern terrorism, the Darwinian eugenics of Hitler, eugenic concepts which force sterilization or killing on individuals and groups in general, greedy corporations, etc. It's people playing God because they think they know what's going to happen at death or in the hereafter who screw us all over in this life. People should be free to believe whatever they want concerning death and the hereafter, but once those unprovable beliefs start adversely affecting the rest of us, then we got problems. So long as the question is open-ended, we should all live like it is.

Kim. Yeah. So anyway, you got me thinking about what it means to prolong your life, because I knew you were going to bring up eugenics and stuff.

Jeff: I have too. I could care less if people think they can breed their family into a better breed of horse, but when they start saying that the rest of us need to die or be sterilized (like they do to africans and other minority groups, and also poor white folk) because we are wasting the resources they are entitled to because they are somehow "more fit," then I have a major problem with their psychotic conclusions, especially since I understand societies, how they are run, and what they are formed for.

Kim: As I was trying to say before you interrupted me with another one of your rants about "the man" and how they are trying to kill us all...

Jeff: And they are.

Kim: Ok, Jeff. Can I finish a thought?

Jeff: Sure.

Kim: I don't think eugenic policies that encroach on the lives of others are right, but I do think there might be something to be said for the survival of the fittest concept. Maybe not the mentality, but the concept.

Jeff: Go on.

Kim: Well, everything really does have a "survival of the fittest" type push behind it. I mean, if you are a dumbass you're going to get yourself killed, that will be the end of your genetic line if you didn't have any offspring. If you don't watch out for yourself, same thing. So, it would seem that it is at least a philosophy in play concerning extending your own life and the life of your genetic legacy, which is sort of self-directed.

Jeff: I agree so far.

Kim: And I also see how some might think that getting rid of the competition and the so-called "bottom feeders" will help extend their lives and increase the amount of positive experiences they have.

Jeff: Careful you are wondering into the land of the psychotic murderers.

Kim: Yes. However, there is something wrong with such people (as you said before) because they are trying to have positive experiences by unnecessarily providing others with negative experiences, and also they are violating the "sharing" of positive experiences concept that we were talking about.

Jeff: Yeah, they're crazy alright. If the people they want eliminated are really all that inferior (such as myself), I say let's let natural concrete forces decided, not a handful of inbred egomaniacs with a whacked out metaphysical philosophy who believe they have a right to rule because they happen to be more downright evil (not necessarily clever or intelligent as they would like to think) than the rest of us. Being more intelligent, more evil, or more clever does not equate to more fit, but ratheras is the case with the eugenic-loving types I speak of—less of a correctly functioning human whose natural intelligence and cunning happen to make them extremely dangerous individuals who often turn into mass murderers that have a fetish for justifying all the death and suffering they promote cloaked under the banner of a misguided metaphysical outlook that in all of their intelligence they are too stupid to realize is actually metaphysical. That being, that they are so whacked-out that they either assume they know there is no afterlife, or there is no judgement in it, or they are so screwed-up in the head that they don't care if there is any universal justice. Such people would have you believe the majority are less fit because they are naive, but I say the majority of people are mentally healthy and thus fit, and what appears to the sick to be naivete, which should be taken advantage of, is actually the healthy human behavior that these inbred scum lack. Most people don't think their leaders would do them evil because their not supposed too, and all healthy and well functioning humans know that, but those broken and malfunctioning egomaniacs look down at them like they are stupid rather than asking themselves if maybe what they are perceiving as stupidity is actually their own flaw in that they find pleasure in seeing others suffer and thus are capable of conceiving of cruel and terrible things which the rest of us would never entertain.

Kim: Okay Jeff, did you get it all out now?

Jeff: I'm just getting warmed up. And I suppose many of the types I am describing would suggest I throw meaningless words and concepts out there such as "justice" and "well-functioning" – people such as Jacques Ellul who wrote The Technological Society back in the 1960s, who talked about the Brave New World some very very sick technocrats would like to see us all living in because they are stuck in a primitive "survival of the fittest" mentality. But I'm ranting...

Kim: Yes you are, and you will have to elaborate, but hold it for now. Ok, so prolonging your life means being fit to survive (eg. be smart, stay healthy, etc.), but not knock as many others out of the game as possible, because it's not a game or competition, but rather an experience.

Jeff: Well, if it is not a competition, then how do you explain various things such as some plants growing talling than others, blocking out the sunlight, and consequently killing the other plants?

Kim: Are you saying the plants did that on purpose?

Jeff: Well, your Darwinian eugenicists would anyways. I'd say those plants weren't out to ruin the lives of the other plants, but rather were simply more enthusiastic about having a positive experience. Although I am not sure how you are going to explain away the inability of those plants to share because I don't have that answer myself.

Kim: Well, for starters how about you can only share what you do not require yourself, if you share more than that, then you fail to survive yourself. How is that for starters?

Jeff: Very good point.

Kim: Thank you. Which goes back to what we were saying a conversation or so ago, and which gets to my point: the prolonging of life in such a manner as to adversely affect others via the justification of survival of the fittest ends when you reach the point of sustainability. Once you reach a point of sustainability you no longer have a drive (or you do not an adequate justification for one) to put your positive experiences over that of others, and if you are well-functioning and intelligent, your drive should then be stronger to want to share your positive experiences with others, since we all know that we all require each other in order to continue to have positive experiences (everything supports the other in this world).

Jeff: Yes.

Kim: So prolonging your life means doing what is actually necessary to sustain it, not what you think might be necessary (like killing off the bottom feeders so you have food). The keyword being necessary, that is you don't step on others unless you have absolutely no choice.

Jeff: So you are saying that so long as there is another route which you're capable of taking which does not immediately hinder your sustainment, you should, if you are well-functioning, seek the alternative route to any which might encroach upon others?

Kim: That's exactly what I am saying! And the more focused you are on having and sharing positive experiences, in contrast to personal survival, the more "fit" you will be to think up and act in ways to sustain yourself without causing the negative experiences of others.

Jeff: Wow! I think I might agree with you, and I think we can find plenty of examples of this nature. Most animals, as we said before, don't fight simply for the sake of fighting, in fact if they are not sick they try to avoid conflicts unless they believe it is absolutely necessary.

Kim: Yes. And we have now exposed another major problem among societies and individuals, which is that they fail to cease surviving upon sustainment, and hence we have greed and the like.

Jeff: They are stuck in their lower and less evolved mindset.

Kim: No, I wouldn't say that because I think all life "gets it." I'd just say such people are, as we said, "sick." They are so focused on their survival that they forget what it is all about, which is, as we said, to live as long of a life as possible and enjoy it in as positive a way as possible, but to also share the positive aspects of life with others.

Jeff: Well, some would just say they are experiencing those positive things with their loved ones and they are justified in screwing the rest.

Kim: True, some would say that, but that doesn't mean their position on the matter is correct.

Jeff: How so?

Kim: As I said, we all need each other. At the heart of things we are all really one. I know that sounds a bit New Agey, but it is true.

Jeff: Yeah, but you're not saying we need to give up our individuality to be one.

Kim: No. I am not.

Jeff: Well, that's the difference, and it's why I disagree with the direction that movement is going in. We might all be one, and I agree, but we are also ourselves.

Kim: True.

Jeff: And you know? That's why I say we are all hypocrites. I say that because life is one big contradiction where we have to find the perfect balance between one extreme or the other in order to live as happily and as healthy as possible. We need to be individuals and communities, looking out for #1, but sharing with as many others as we can, trying to live positive, but forced to ocassionaly be the cause of the negative, etc. It's one big mind screw if you don't get the fact that that is how things are supposed to be.

Kim: I couldn't agree with you more. I wouldn't go so far as to call all people hypocrites, but I do understand and concur with what you are saying.

Jeff: So what have we established here, then?

Kim: That the purpose of life is to prolong it by sustaining it in the least intrusive manner possible so that we all can have as many positive experiences as possible while this life lasts, part of which is to share those positive experiences with as many others as possible, as a means by which to extend our own quantity and quality of positive experiences.

Jeff: So then you are saying that you are primarily defining the prolonging of life for the purpose of experiencing life as "the least intrusive manner of necessary self-sustainment"?

Kim: Yes. Though I would not separate my definition of the prolonging of life from your concept of the purpose of life, but rather use it to more correctly define one portion of your philosophy. In other words, I would say that "the purpose of this life is to sustain our existence in the least intrusive manner necessary in order to attain the greatest possible abundance of personal and communal experiences of a positive nature."

Jeff: I like it, very good. And it's only...Let me see...Thirty-three words. Thirty-three words to live by, and it fits right in with my take on society, cultures, and civilization in general. I think you could even use that statement to express what true (not religiously dogmatic) morality and immorality are. That is, morality would be that which is least negative and most positive for the individual and community as a whole, although it requires the individual to actually think about what is necessary and what is not and to maintain a focus upon intending and trying to create the most positive outcome. Are we asking too much of the individual? I mean, asking them to actually think and care and all?

Kim: I'd like to think not. We just need to quit projecting our own opinions about what happens at death and afterwards onto others and start worrying more about living with one another in the here and now. It is perfectly alright to form an opinion about such matters, even express them, but if that is all you think about and you base your life upon, so that the way you treat others is inconsistant with the reality, then well...

Jeff: You are the living dead.

Kim: Exactly. And as the living dead you are wasting your own life and usually ruining the lives of others. We could be putting all of that energy into finding new ways to be less and less intrusive and creating more and more peace and happiness.

Jeff: Yeah. Maybe people would be less worried about acquiring money and possessions to propel themselves and their genetic line forward and oppress the little man, and more worried about having fun, loving others, and lifting people up? Maybe instead of talking about reducing the world's population we'd be talking about expanding out into the stars to have more positive experiences and to discover more wonderous things? We wouldn't be competing anymore than we had too, and instead we'd be cooperating as much as we possibly could.

Kim: Sounds plausible, but didn't you basically assert that there is not a basic good in humanity?

Jeff: Wow! You're going back a few conversations, but you are right, I did say that. That is precisely why the things we are talking about are not happening.

Kim: Then how can you expect them to happen?

Jeff: We have to change the entire system. It's not that people are bad, it is that they are taught to survive and thrive in a bad system. It's this Cultural Mandate crap and all the other stuff, and the very structure of society and its misguided purpose.

Kim: How so?

Jeff: Did you ever read Plato's Republic?

Kim: Parts of it anyways.

Jeff: Well you should read the entire thing. And don't get some so-called intellectual to explain it to you, just read the thing for what it says. It's really not that difficult to read and understand. My point being that it sheds quite a bit of light on how our society operates and where it is going, but I'd really only call it an introduction to the whole scam. That's why I said not to rely on someone who has been schooled by the system to explain what the text is really supposed to mean, because they'll give you the official "spin" they have been taught, but if you keep digging and combining what you learn with what you have personally experienced you will very quickly understand just what sort of "jig" is up. But the issue goes much deeper than that, you have to start asking questions about what the purpose of society and civilization itself is. Once you understand that, then you'll understand why I call what we have a scam.

Kim: Well why not enlighten me?

Jeff: I intend too give you my understanding, but I really do emphasize the importance of studying such things on your own. It is probably one of the most important issues for anyone to take the time to fully understand, yet most don't even bother. Most are just born into this way of life and they take it as the gospel truth without even blinking. They think this is all they know and this is how they know to survive so they never bother really looking at what makes things tick and why we have this set-up we call "the system". And they wonder why the world is so screwed up and everyone is stressed out, but they just try to make things better from within that framework, never even considering that the entire framework is the problem.

Kim: Don't we all have a general understanding of what this system is for though? I mean, progress, Jeff – hello! We have electricity and everyone gets food at the grocery store; we have running water, etc.

Jeff: Please don't do that to me.

Kim: Do what?

Jeff: You are repeating what you heard and were told. I know that because they told me the same thing in school and on the television and in the books.

Kim: Well, wouldn't you call running water, plumbing and medicine progress?

Jeff: Sure I would. But how did you get those things?

Kim: Through the progress of society.

Jeff: Yeah exactly. You got running water and your plumbing and your medicine and your automobile because someone died so you could have it. Someone lost their life and their freedom so you could have it. Someone spent sixty hours a week pushing a button repeatedly for fifty years and missed out on most of their life including many experiences with their children and grandchildren so you could have a hot shower. Not to mention all the bull they had to put up with from cradle to grave that would have most likely been a fraction of the bull put up with three hundred years ago – the everyday bull that comes with this way of doing things. My point being, not that progress is bad, but that the system we use to attain it is. It benefits a few at the expense of the many. It's not right and we all know it isn't.

Kim: Well no system is perfect and we have to have the negatives in order to get the positives. We'll get it straightened out sooner or later.

Jeff: No we won't.

Kim: How do you know that?

Jeff: Because you need to understand how the entire thing is designed, that is how I know that. It is not designed for the benefit of the many, Kim. Our society, all modern societies are designed for the benefit of a few. And once more, if you are one of the many who does not like all the bologna, then you are the bad guy. You are deemed some sort of danger to the few. Your running water is given to you to keep you healthy enough to work and to keep you quiet. That is all! It's not for you the person, it is for you the worker and the consumer. If you think it's there to make you happy and provide you with progress, then try shutting it off once. They have codes and laws against that you know. It's not for you, it's for the few who need the resources (including human resources) of the many.

Kim: I get the feeling I am going to regret this, but I will entertain your thoughts. Go ahead!

Jeff: Well first I think I am going to need one of those mass produced beers, provided to me in one of those mass produced glasses.

Kim: I thought our system was bad?

Jeff: There you go again. I didn't say the "stuff" it makes is necessarily bad. I'm saying the way we get it and who it is intended to benefit is very likely at the heart of the issue concerning happiness for all of humanity and maybe even all life.

Kim: Well that beer sure seems like it is benefiting you.

Jeff: You gotta think bigger than me Kim, bigger than me. I'm just a consumer. You think I'd be allowed to benefit myself by whipping up a nice batch of grain alcohol for my personal enjoyment?

Kim: No. That would be illegal.

Jeff: Precisely. I drink what I am told to drink. Sure, I can choose between any number of given choices, but it has to be those choices and there is a reason for that.

Kim: So you don't kill yourself or add a burden to society by accidentally poisoning yourself.

Jeff: The first answer has nothing to do with it. I could accidentally kill myself a thousand ways and you don't see them taken from me. It has nothing to do with me and my welfare, Kim. But the second part of your answer is partly correctly. It is for the benefit of society, but I still maintain that the purpose of society is not for the benefit of you or me or anyone we likely know, or even for the vast majority. But how about that beer?

Kim: Ok. I want to hear this then.