If You Want to Know What Came Before Infinity, Then You Don’t Understand Infinity

There is a wide yawning black infinity. In every direction the extension is endless, the sensation of depth is overwhelming. And the darkness is immortal. Where light exists, it is pure, blazing, fierce; but light exists almost nowhere, and the blackness itself is also pure and blazing and fierce. But most of all, there is very nearly nothing in the dark; except for little bits here and there, often associated with the light, this infinite receptacle is empty.

This picture is strangely frightening. It should be familiar. It is our universe.

Even these stars, which seem so numerous, are, as sand, as dust, or less than dust, in the enormity of the space in which there is nothing. Nothing! We are not without empathetic terror when we open Pascal’s Pensées and read, “I am the great silent spaces between worlds.”

The words above are credited to Carl Sagan when he was an undergraduate student in the early 1950s at the University of Chicago. They seem a fitting introduction to the essay I’ve pasted below, which is copied verbatim from one I posted in this space on 1 January 2008. Yes, it’s naive. But it was written a long time ago. I’ve added the song embedded directly below.

Not so long ago, humans believed the watershed was everything. Their world was restricted to a tiny area, and traveling beyond the area was undesirable — even dangerous. But some daring traveler took the leap and discovered a world beyond the watershed.

Rinse and repeat, from the watershed to the continent, from the continent to the world, from the world to the solar system, from the solar system to the galaxy, from the galaxy to the universe. If the Church hadn’t killed a few daring travelers along the way, we’d have discovered a lot more a lot sooner. Call it the collateral damage of controlling the empire.

Human discovery represents a continuum, with our part diminishing along the way. The world was large, but we were large, too. Discoveries and our ability to travel made the world smaller. And then the solar system, and so on, so that now we’ve explained the universe in physical terms and we understand our inconsequential role (and our hubris, which is quite consequential).

Religious believers like to believe we’re special, that Somebody is watching over us. And they use the most stunning logic to explain the notion of Somebody: Science only explains our universe back to the Big Bang. What about before then? And what caused the Bang, and all the matter associated with it? It must have come from something. By which they mean Somebody.

As if pointing to Somebody explains it all.

Stephen B. Hawking tried to explain the idea of a singularity to the lay public in his dreadfully incomprehensible 1988 book, A Brief History of Time. I suspect this was one of the most-purchased, least-read books of all time. Needless to say, Hawking’s prose failed to provide an explanation convincing to the masses. But here’s the bottom line: Universes come and go, and they collapse and arise in events called singularities.

Fast-forward to the Russian physicist Alex Vilenkin and his 2006 book, Many Worlds in One. Vilenkin explains that ours is one of many universes — an infinite number, in fact. If you buy the evidence behind an expanding universe (which is overwhelming), then it’s a short, simple, and logical step to ours being one of an infinite number of universes. We’re part of the multiverse. The continuum rolls on.

Most universes likely blink out as quickly as they arise. They persist only a few nanoseconds, and fail to produce even a single flower. Some of these universes, such as ours, are relatively stable. They persist long enough, and have sufficient initial conditions, that life arises. Eventually, intelligent life arises, if you’re willing to stretch the definition far enough. Count up all these universes, come to terms with the concept of infinity, and you’ve got an infinite number of Guy McPhersons typing these words now.

This explanation accounts for all matter, and all energy, for all universes, for all time. Thus, it explains our universe, and the universes that preceded ours, and so on, back to infinity ago (and also from now until infinity).

Many of you are thinking, “Yeah, but what about before that?” If you want to know what came before infinity, then you don’t understand infinity.

Since the brains of most of us are somewhat smaller than infinity, religious believers will never admit that physical processes might explain more about the universe — or even the multiverse — than that “explanation” to trump all explanations, “Somebody did it. Somebody big and mysterious that we’ll never understand.” Somebody like Gawd, Yahweh, the Great Spirit, or the unicorn on the dark side of the moon. But invoking Somebody is choosing to remain ignorant. That’s a personal choice, of course, and I’m happy to let religious believers keep believing instead of thinking. Especially if they let me think. It’d be even better if they encouraged their children to think, but apparently that’s asking too much.

It’s pretty demoralizing to think there are an infinite number of Earths dealing with peak oil and runaway greenhouse by promoting destruction and ignorance. But it’s pretty cool to think that there are an infinite number of planet Earths that produced humans with empathy, compassion, and creativity. On these Earths, humans persist a very long time and humbly share the planet with many other species. On these Earths, there is no runaway greenhouse. Passing the planetary oil peak is a cause for celebration because, on these Earths, the demise of cheap oil doesn’t spell the end of civilization and the likely demise of four-fifths of the humans on Earth.

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Catch Nature Bats Last on the radio with Mike Sliwa and Guy McPherson. To catch us live, tune in every Tuesday at 3:00 p.m. Eastern time, or catch up in the archives here. If you prefer the iTunes version, including the option to subscribe, you can click here.
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Looking for San Francisco Bay Area folks to raise $$$$ to bring Guy to San Francisco. Please contact amyvegan@gmail.com if you are willing to donate towards Guy’s travel here.

Comments 138

  • 4/5 of humans? You must be particularly optimistic today.

  • You must have skipped over this part, Ken: “Yes, it’s naive. But it was written a long time ago.”

  • Enjoyed the essay Guy.

  • Hey Doc:
    I think you guys got the Dark Matter thing all wrong. And from that you derived this ludicrous theory of infinite multiverses even to the point of having “Many Dr. McPhersons” writing this essay. Rubbish. Then you go on to criticize “The Church” as if the Catholics were the sole representatives of “Christianity”. There were many other churches besides Rome.
    The correct reason the Universe is expanding has nothing to do with Dark Matter. God says in the Bible that He “stretched out the heavens”
    which is why they are expanding and even now accelerating.

  • “Die Wirklichkeit in wirklichkeit ist nicht Wirklich Wirklich …. Aber wirlich ist sie doch !
    HUMANIC Passt immer ..
    This was a shoe store commercial For The Humanic shoe store chain on radio in the eighties in Germany and austria
    translation
    “Reality in reality is not really real ….. and still it is ”
    Humanic always fits

    Did they already know something ?!

  • Guy said that universes come and go. I understand our universe began with the big bang. And there’s a nice symmetry to our universe ending with a big crunch, with all energy/matter being sucked into the infinite density of a black whole, precipitating another big band and on and on. However, physicists say that this won’t happen. Instead the universe will expand forever with entropy running its course resulting a cold, ’empty’ ever expanding universe, which is rather depressing.

  • “The Church” as if the Catholics were the sole representatives of “Christianity”. There were many other churches besides Rome…..”

    You’re absolutely correct! In fact, there are well over 20,000 different denominative interpretations of the Old Testament……I’m sure one of them knows exactly what gawd really meant to say. That’s the beautiful thing about fiction, the reader can imagine whatever suits their particular fancy.


  • Quote Carl Sagan:

    But most of all, there is very nearly nothing in the dark; except for little bits here and there, often associated with the light, this infinite receptacle is empty.
    This picture is strangely frightening. It should be familiar. It is our universe.

    The term “Nothing” isn’t that simple as it looks at first sight. Philosophers of all times struggled with it’s meaning. In modern physics the socalled “Vacuum” represesents the “Nothing”. The latin root of “vacuum” is “vacuus” for “vacant” or “void”.

    The problem of “Nothing” (or Vacuum) is, that, no matter what, one always thinks and talks about SOMETHING when one tries to formulate Nothing, hahaha (and even silence is something). One maybe think of “great, dark, blackness” or an empty “black box” (a coffin?, harr harr), but that’s not Nothing at all (remember that, when you try to imagine your own Death^^)…

    (The Vacuum in Modern Physics) Is not ‘nothing at all’
    Need not be unique
    Need not be stable
    Can change with time

    The vacuum is what is
    left after all that can be
    removed has been removed

    James Clerk Maxwell

    This what remains when everything has been removed can be just named with anything, it doesn’t matter in the long run if you call it “God” or “Void” or “Vacuum” or “Abyss” or “Blue Guitar” or whatever. There is just no word, no quality to describe what’s left when everything has been removed. It’s the abyss of language, the abyss of thought, the abyss of mind, the abyss of the Kosmos, the Abyss within ourselves…

    “i>… That is symbolically called death here, and further, it is described as the hunger of things to grab other objects.

    Now, what is this hunger mentioned here – aśanāyayā hi mṛtyuḥ? It is the urge that is simultaneously present in the process of creation for an involution of things. When there is a separation of one thing from another in creation, the seer becomes distinguished from the seen, the subject is separated from the object, they struggle to become one; because that which is separated has hiddenly present in itself the capacity to unite also, as the two are nothing but the substance of the one. So, the indivisibility of the one presses itself forward even in the divisibility of the two.

    So, there is restlessness everywhere. Our sorrows, our difficulties or problems, our griefs and every kind of unwanted things here, are a tussle between two elements in our soul – the urge for diversity and the urge for unity, fighting with one another. This struggle is Samsāra, right from the original Creator, Brahma, down to a blade of grass. This Aśanāyayā, the hunger of the spirit, is the activity of the cosmos, where, on one side, it struggles to become more and more wide in its physical quantitative expanse, and on the other side, it struggles to become one with the Universal Spirit.

    So, we have two elements present in us always – the tendency to unity and the tendency to diversity. We ask for expansion in quantity, and at the same time, we ask for a heightening of our value in quality. However, the Upaniṣhad here mentions, in a very difficult word, that the origin of creation is indescribable, and it is indescribable merely because it preceded a state which requires the presence of the effect in the cause, and which was also preceded by a state which has within it, invisibly present, the capacity to multiply and also the capacity to unite…”

    http://www.swami-krishnananda.org/brdup/brhad_I-02.html

    … here we go again, Atma Svarupa (symbolically)^^:

    http://tinyurl.com/pg9vrzr

    Here an excellent discussion about the subject of “Nothing” from a modern, more scientific perspective:


  • Another fairytale for your amusement during your voyage on the great infinite ocean of woo:

    http://www.intellihub.com/geoengineering-deliberate-melting-arctic/

    Geoengineering and the deliberate melting of the Arctic

    ————————-

    Photons may indeed have mass?
    http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/physics/ParticleAndNuclear/photon_mass.html

    More woo vicar?

  • Guy, a special thanks for all your re-postings like this one–inspiring windows into an evolving person.

  • Even tho’ my brain is getting older and losing it’s magnetic forces and the wiring may not always make it’s connections, I can feel my body (it is still warm). I can close my eyes into infinity and float. But, I still have to wake up to the masses of us and am appalled how fast we forced our own extinction.

    The native Hawaiians have fought the cold; and, arresting policemen on top of Mauna Kea Mt. to try to stop the construction of the billion+ dollar telescope on their sacred mountain. They have been “promised” no more building after this one, but someone has the expensive need to look out into the universe to find that distant star that may be on the edge of infinity.

    I had to put my dog to sleep yesterday. It got torn up by a hunting dog. She is buried in the yard with flowers; I can feel her past presence and ache for the little warm body…but, she is now decaying in the soil. Fuck infinity; we are here now!!! And, she is gone now.

    Governments are now in the New Testament of fighting to become one.

  • “Since the brains of most of us are somewhat smaller than infinity, religious believers will never admit that physical processes might explain more about the universe …”

    Yes, physical processes are what explanatory science uses to explain what happens in the world.

    Conscientious scientists always focus on physical processes – it’s what scientists do.

    Famous Fynman diagrams show a “physical process.”

    Physical processes & their energy cost are inescapable & mandatory for understanding our world, as some of us have learned from global heating & NTE.

    SO, THINK BEFORE YOU CREMATE – CREMATION IS A PHYSICAL PROCESS.

    It is super expensive & super energy intensive with a massive carbon footprint.

    I don’t mean any meanness, disrespect, contempt for the dead, or hatred for cremation business people …

    They are trying to cut the mustard too.

    But, if ONE MILLION people opted out of the energy sucking cremation end game, we could save enormous amounts of fossil fuel energy.

    If SIX MILLION intelligent energy aware people opted out, we would save at least TWENTY MILLION GALLONS of gasoline/diesel equivalent, when one calculates start to finish.

    Sure, a mad dog murderer might want to cremate his victim(s) in order to hide the physical evidence – no body, no murder.

    Dirty murdering bastid murderers know that only physical evidence can readily & easily convict his arse.

    An average human body takes from two to three hours to burn completely and will produce an average of 3 to 9 pounds (1.4 to 4.1 kilograms) of ash. The amount of ash depends usually on the bone structure of the person and not so much their weight [source: Ellenberg].

    In modern crematories, the body is stored in a cool, temperature-controlled room until it’s approved for cremation.

    The body is then put into a container or casket made out of flammable materials such as plywood, pine or cardboard. In some countries, workers remove other external items such as jewelry or glasses, while other countries prohibit workers from doing so.

    When the incinerator is preheated to about 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit (593 degrees Celsius), the mechanized doors are opened and the container slips quickly from a rack of rolling metal pins into the primary cremating chamber, also referred to as a retort.

    Once the door is sealed, the body is subjected to a jet-enginelike column of flame, aimed at the torso. The heat ignites the container and dries the body, which is composed of 75 percent water. As the soft tissues begin to tighten, burn and vaporize from the heat, the skin becomes waxy, discolors, blisters and splits. The muscle begins to char, flexing and extending limbs as it tightens. The bones, which are the last to go, become calcified as they are exposed to the heat and begin to flake or crumble.

    A 68 kg (150 lbs) body which contains 65% water will require 100 MJ of thermal energy before any combustion will take place. 100 MJ is approximately equivalent to 32 m3 (105 ft3) of natural gas, or 3 liters of fuel oil (0.8 US gallons). Additional energy is necessary to make up for the heat capacity (“preheating”) of the furnace, fuel burned for emissions control, and heat losses through the insulation and in the flue gases.

    As a result, cremators are most often heated by burners fueled by natural gas. LPG (propane/butane) or fuel oil may be used where natural gas is not available.

    These burners can range in power from 150 kW per hour to 400kW per hour.

    150 kW = 4,500 big 100 watt light bulbs per dead body for 3 hours cooking well done.

    If electrical furnaces are used — between 0.13 and 0.18 megajoules for each body – about 220 lbs wood per body.

    http://science.howstuffworks.com/cremation2.htm

  • Today, I heard “Ours is a world ruled by the aggressive use of force” Rush Limbo ” Always has, always will” . This capped of my listening to an interesting debate, Alex Epstein vs Bill Mccibben, discovered on YouTube. Bill M. came prepared with cited study after study to prove that the pollution of our atmosphere with CO2 must be stopped. Alex Epstein merely replied that fossil fuels is the most wonderful thing that ever happened and it would be tragic if it was taken away.

    Alex was surprisingly attractive and pleasant to listen to as it embodied total non-comprehension and disbelief that the doomsday scenario that Bill M. put forth was in any way real or possible. From my couch I realized that how could I judge the veracity of the possibility of a Near Term Human Extinction (NTHE) when challenged with the retort that there have been claims of doomsday many time before, never with any truth to them!
    After 4 billion years, could I possibly be sitting at the moment when Humanity truly passes the tipping point and is launched into NTHE? Could Nature Bat Last and in the bottom of the ninth, score is tied and NBL team hits a lead-off Home Run ending the game. The Billionaire Humans knowing what they know, could they truly believe that NTHE is avoidable with their Billions at hand to save the day ? Or could it be inconceivable to them that all of the billions of dollars in the world cannot stop the inexorable changes that Nature has planned now that the CO2 trap has been sprung on a nearly unsuspecting Humanity.

    Or will it be as if the outfielder must only leap 15 feet in the air to catch this Home Run wannabe , and Bill Gates and Warren Buffet team up to start making Solar Panels and Windmills and some Hopium technology to start sucking CO2 out of the atmosphere to bring CO2 down to 300 ppm rapidly and Humanity is saved even in its last hours!

    Why didn’t Michael Moore make this movie 20 years ago so that we would all understand it better instead of that ‘Inconvenient Truth’ gibberish that didn’t convince anyone. Its payback time……

  • @Helene, I’m really sorry about your little dog. I know what you mean about “expensive needs”. Curiosity has killed more than one cat, and it is poised to kill us all. “No more building after this one..” A friend of mine told me about a cute kid he saw playing at the playground: his parents said it was time to go home, and he said “just one more!” slide on the slide or whatever. After that, “just one more!” and “just one more!”. When the parents were getting fed up, and said that he’d already had one more, the kid said “I’ll tell you when it’s just one more!”

    So, they’ll tell us when it’s just one more…

    I like the idea of science, as opposed to the alternative (unfounded belief in the writings of random maniacs), but it’s part and parcel of the diminishing returns of The Human Project upon this planet.

    I guess we are all asking for just one more: one more day, one more meal, one more drink, one more sunrise, one more chance to love someone or something or some little critter (creature).


    @John Lynch: Why is it that the people who insist that the universe must have its origin in a god character.. never have an answer for the origin OF the god character? It’s like they just want to insert their little extra pet step into the proceedings without resolving anything at all.

    You would think the people who are hell-bent on convincing us of certain fictions would’ve come up with something -something good- for the god character’s back story. Does the Christian god character have a mother and/or father? Siblings? What did he do with himself before creating the heaven and the earth? Was he just sitting around picking at his toe jam? Why bother creating other planets if they aren’t to host beings whose lives he can fuck with vicariously? Were Venus and Mars created just so that people could by gypped by astrologers? So that McCartney and Wings could get rich(er)? Inquiring minds want to know.

    Sorry, but this whole proposition (gods) just cheeses me off. I called my Rapture-Ready™® sis before the TG holiday here in the US, and the conversation wound up with me just not being able to contain my contempt for her preferring a lie to the truth. I wanted to be kind, but I just could not, and I feel badly for that.

    This has to do with NTE, as well: If one cares about a person, is it better to allow them to wallow in illusions that make them happy, or burst their bubble, so that they might achieve a greater potential for dealing with the actual crises of our world?

  • You should read Job 38-39. Pretty cool information for ancient knowledge. Also Isaiah 24. Been reading that with close Hebrew texts for a long time and can say that there is something fishy about that knowledge, very cryptic yet revealing under certain conditions in Time itself, the fruit of wisdom or insight in human desire matching springs of religion along the way bringing forth an end result. The ancient rulers knew how to master the dragon using the prime ingredients in alchemy; philosopher’s stone, elixir of life, you know: shoot an arrow in a clear sky using the 3 base ingredients. You know, to combat the giant snake/dragon that make the places too warm for their comfort, el(god)-nino. Jesus did it with fish, using 2. It’s madness to imagine beyond our solar system as it is here we live and will never be anywhere but here, yet to say that we are alone is highly unlikely. To gaze upon a maze is not to know it by heart when walking through it. Religion is in my belief the thing that works to control and command but at what cost? That used their knowledge to be worshiped as deities, reflecting a path to salvation while instead created monsters that did nothing but control the very foundation we build upon. Divide and conquering without any regard of their impacts. It is man that was set over nature to take care of it; while filling the earth, makes sense in wisdom. That makes more sense than turning the cheek and letting the unrighteous and stupid rule the world as has been now achieved. Even it means to eat dust to cool things down, we will find a way.


  • The ancient rulers knew how to master the dragon using the prime ingredients in alchemy…

    It is true: They perform the Empire through Magick. Religion, Myths, Propaganda is Magick. It is the Magick of Images and Words, the Magick of Stories. Images and Words create Worlds, Worlds of History, the Worldview of people.

    Religion, myths, Imagination, (I)magick can’t be replaced by Science. You can’t replace Magick, because it is the Magick of the cosmic Matrix (Maya), hahaha. It is the Magick of “seing things”, the Magick of Dreams, Visions, Images, Imag- ination. There would be no history, no nothing without Stories, without Myths, without Magick. Look at the TV, cinema, advertisement, magazines, fashion, books, art in general, look at the stories we give to our own personal lifes ect ect. That Magick can’t be replaced. Even Science can’t replace Magick:

    What is the Creation out of Nothing other than Magick? 😎

    Problem is, they missused Science to gain technical control over Nature, over the planet, over the Matrix. But they will fail, in fact, the magicians of Empire are already falling.

  • @Helen Love

    I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of your beloved dog. You have my condolences.

  • @Gerald Spezio

    For the longest time I was firmly in favor of being cremated. However, in recent years and reflecting daily on NTHE, I have slowly wobbled about the possibility of being buried. I wasn’t aware until only recently just how much heat is needed to cremate a human body. The information you posted in detail has made me commit now to being buried… unless some hungry cannibal gets me into his dinner pot when the shit hits the fan. 😉 Seriously, thank you for the informative bit on cremation. I intend to feed the worms when my time is up. Thank you! Those are my two posts.

  • Infinite Earth-like planets flourishing with species who co-exist in long term balance. Luckily small bits of natural balance still exists in the deepest Amazon and out on the African plain.

    Long past native hunter-gathers, mastodons, dinosaurs, eons of pre extinction species devoured in their own forms of balance. Bloody tooth & claw. But never before like humans do it here and now.

    Maybe when we finally build 500 Fukishima’s by 2017, we will have refined just the right amount uranium meltdown for the next evolutionary stage. Will our GMO Tardigrades co-exist in radioactive peace or will they mutate into another species with opposable thumbs?

    Dogs of science, nobody will remember our DNA tinkering times here. Future species may develop from our plastic prints…Mother nature and the necessity of invention may be very very very queer.

    CUNTAGIOUS – Possibly the super massive black hole at the center of our galaxy is compacting for another big bang. Very likely Singularities are active all over the known universe. Maybe Other big bangs are being created constantly while this one known universe slowly goes cold.

    Very possibly this universe with end in cold Entropy. Yet even in that dark vacuum, the debris of dead planets must continue to decay. Is entropy like a cosmic recycler? Does entropy reduce to dust the laws of Energy where matter is always transformed yet energy can never be created nor destroyed? Transformation even in thermal-dynamic laws? Uncertainty in the spectrum’s of quantum waves we may never in time touch or explore?

    Helen, Love to your beloved cat. In energy as we understand it now, every element of every animal is never totally lost. Even your love and memory contain the heart of the relationship. That lives on in you and with love that matters the most.

  • Helen LOVE to your little dog. I meant to say PET not cat. Please forgive me and a few other missed words above. At that exact moment I was thinking PET and Schrodinger’s cat being alive. Sorry for your loss.

  • @Tim

    In a recent book, “The Myth of German Villainy” by Benton L. Bradberry, the author researches the 21 million German dead from WWII.

    8 million Germans died during WWII. 13 million Germans died in the eight years after WWII.

    This genocide was no accident. It was an all-Juden wet dream.

    FDR approved the Morgenthau Plan, and Ike ran the death camps.

    http://www.zundelsite.org/rheinwiesenlager.html

    Churchill’s Science Advisor, Prof. Frederick Lindemann, dreamed up Terror Bombing, whereby Allied bombers destroyed densely populated German cities instead of factories.

    Minister of Hate, Ilya Ehrenberg, viciously motivated Russian soldiers to kill Germans and rape millions of German women.

    It was to cover up this Holocaust that another one was invented.

  • Nummo Nemesis, nobody demonstrates complete asininity better than you.

    You is a real prevert.

  • @ Lidia

    You ask:

    “This has to do with NTE, as well: If one cares about a person, is it better to allow them to wallow in illusions that make them happy, or burst their bubble, so that they might achieve a greater potential for dealing with the actual crises of our world?”

    How we answer that question I suppose first depends on how honest we want to be with ourselves in getting to the center of the tootsie pop.

    We might need to first ask ourselves a few things such as: What difference will it make either way? If a person is capable of believing in utter nonsense, what makes us think they’ve the capacity of parsing together empirical evidence for themselves? How is the knowledge of NTE advantageous? What does it mean to “care about a person”, for do we actually care about them, or do we care more about the idea of who we think they are or once were? What makes us believe we know the difference? What makes us believe we know anything of significant relevance outside of our individual lived experience?

    Nonetheless, I’ll give you my answer. On days I’ve a burr under my saddle; I let loose on others, because in spite of my best intentions, I still remain sad, angry, vain and egotistical. But most days, especially these days, I keep my mouth shut, more or less, and allow whoever to be whatever they want to be, for I’ve learned that no one responses well to being told what they don’t want to hear. Most everyone here at NBL, is naturally inclined to be here.

    Throw in the opinion that few are wired for truth seeking, where most are wired for hopium, and anything I might have to offer, isn’t going to change a damn thing anyways. Just be and let be…..no matter how daftly ignorant we choose to remain.

    Being aware once had its rewards, because we once believed knowledge beget the power to affect change, but if we’ve accepted that this in no longer an option, then knowledge is no longer as it was once advertised.

    At this late stage, attempting to disabuse others of their cherished delusions, probably speaks more about “us”, than it does “them”.

  • Daniel, I don’t think that truth seeking or not truth seeking is a matter of (brain/genetic) wiring.

    The basic brain meat is the same regardless of culture or geography.

    But yes, whether we are truth seeking or not is a critical question that must be answered.

    Environmental & social conditioning is supported by the most sound science.

    Behavioralism is the science of environmental & social conditioning by material & physical forces.

    If a human in a primitive native culture didn’t grasp material & physical reality & proceed accordingly, she wouldn’t survive.

    Israeli Jewish youth, especially, are conditioned from infancy to see themselves as special children of a special Gawd & entitled to all manner of special divine exceptions.

    They are taught the most vicious hatreds, aggressions, justifications, & convoluted self-centered tribal politics before they can say no.

    Science can be seen as a universal culture of genuine & tireless objective reality assessment.

    Lying to a child, or distorting the receptive brain of an innocent smiling child is a crime w//o equal.

  • @Lidia:
    Q: “Why is it that the people who insist that the universe must have its origin in a god character.. never have an answer for the origin OF the god character?”

    A: “If You Want to Know What Came Before Infinity, Then You Don’t Understand Infinity” Guy McPherson

    Secondly, I asked a “Scientist” about the origin of “Everything” and they said they didn’t know either. That the now debunked “Big Bang” happened where “Nothing exploded into something and when its all over , the process repeats itself.” BTW I hear its been proven that everything is not going to be collapsing back into nothing this time and that all will just drift off into Eternity.

    To me, “In the beginning “God”… made more sense than “In the Beginning , “Nothing” exploded into something .

    As far as NTHE is concerned, the Bible clearly teaches the beginning AND the end. And the end looks like the Earth will be in full blown Runaway , Abrupt Climate Change. Just ask your “Rapture Ready” sister. Revelations is 1900 years old. Ezekiel , Daniel, Jeremiah , and Isaiah are about 2500 yrs. old and when they describe the end , it looks a lot like what we are about to experience too.

    I wish you well,
    John Lynch

  • @Daniel, thanks. You are right, and that’s how I do operate (mostly silent, with only very minor occasional public outbursts).

    I just had a bit of a set-to on this score with my husband a few minutes ago!! A well-intentioned local town-level pol (lives off-grid in a house he built himself, logs with horses, wife sells raw milk) just sent out an electronic appeal: he wants to get people more involved in town government and asked for public input.

    I want to tell him the way I see things, so that he and the town don’t keep going down the primrose path. He *asked* for input. Hubby gets angry, demanding of me, “what is the point? what is there to gain by being ‘polemical’?” He wants to leave people to do what they want, and not overly concern ourselves with anyone else’s mis-guided thinking.

    After hearing about Kevin Moore’s problems in NZ, I have to admit he has a point, but I also see, in this particular person, an ally. Husband is annoyed that I want to “kill hope”. He agrees that there is no basis for hope, but coming from a kind of anti-McPherson angle, he doesn’t want me to go about “killing hope” in others.

    You’re right in that I still cling to “knowledge” as having some sort of “its own” reward. I think some of that expectation is real but acknowledge some as talismanic. Even if knowledge hasn’t the power to effect global or even regional or local change, I think it might still render a few person’s/creatures lives less painful than they might otherwise be.

    I still think that having people refrain from stupid spending and veer towards defensive spending (let’s say town root cellar vs. town skating rink) could bring people together in understanding of our common fragility. I hate-hate-hate living this schizophrenic life, and would selfishly appreciate the relief of a.) not feeling as though I were crazy and alone, and b.) some kind of material exchange of support, resources and skills to last however long, as an alternative to leaving ourselves completely hung out to dry for the remainder… among people who are angry their X-Box/Hot-Pockets shipments have been mysteriously cancelled.

    I deeply appreciate your thoughts.

  • I don’t know about the infinity of Karma but it looks like we’ll be paying for this shit for a long time. Infinitely?

  • P.S. I wasn’t even going to lay NTE on them, “just” guaranteed de-growth and economical collapse. 🙂

  • I’m more focused on the universe right in front of me. The only one we can touch. The one owned by a tyrannical plutocracy which we allowed to rule us and which we try so earnestly to ignore. The one that wants us dead once it uses up our labor and steals the last bit we need to live on. The one that sucks the life out every living ecosystem that we are fortunate enough to observe. I like to contemplate how it came about, and why supposedly intelligent people do nothing to stop it and why we allow it to define and enforce its truth upon us.

  • Hey John Lynch, you need to stop trusting popular media – from any millenia.

    “Did the big bang really happen? Yes, despite recent claims to the contrary. A new paper in Physical Letters B has the popular press wondering if there was no big bang, but the actual paper claims no such thing.”

    http://briankoberlein.com/2015/02/10/beginning/

  • ‘I’m more focused on the universe right in front of me. The only one we can touch. The one owned by a tyrannical plutocracy which we allowed to rule us’

    ‘we allowed’?

    I don’t remember ever being given the option of not being ruled by them. And let’s face it, anyone who seriously challenges them quickly gets annihilated.

    The revolution won’t be televised because there will be no revolution.

    It seems that the best we can do is to not wear their clothes, not eat their food, not listen to their propaganda, not worship their heroes, not vote for their puppets, as we watch them gradually destroy everything that matters and wait for geochemistry and geophysics to demolish all their systems.

    Pity the children, growing up on a ruined planet which will soon be devastated.

  • For some reason, Guy’s essay reminded me of this song. I’m less inclined these days to question why…

  • Gerald says: “Israeli Jewish youth, especially, are conditioned from infancy to see themselves as special children of a special Gawd & entitled to all manner of special divine exceptions. They are taught the most vicious hatreds, aggressions, justifications, & convoluted self-centered tribal politics before they can say no.”

    Yes, Gerry, unlike every other fucking child on planet earth.

    You are truly a complete and total God damn moron.

  • If there are multiverses, does each one have it’s own god or is Yahweh a multi-tasker?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_sVbcbpfUo

  • Dr Carl said:
    “…the enormity of the space in which there is nothing. Nothing! ”

    This is just a presumption.

    Because matter, light, or other electromagnetic radiation does not appear to be present or emergent from large regions of space is no reason to assume there is nothing there.
    The frippery of the word ‘nothing’-no thing- is misleading.

    Maybe the issue is better stated: looking for ‘parts’ of a whole can look like there is nothing there, when it is the ‘whole’ that is present.

    Can’t say it any clearer than that.

    Oh, BTW, here is the beginning of the breaking of the social contract for aged people here in Afraidia.

    ‘Treasurer Scott Morrison says to forget about relying on the age pension’

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/treasurer-scott-morrison-says-to-forget-about-relying-on-the-age-pension-20151127-gl9q2i.html

    “Treasurer Scott Morrison has put ordinary Australian workers on notice that they should no longer expect to receive an age pension from the government when they retire.”

    The end of any socialism, or public community support is nigh. It will be work till you drop. Pretty clear.

    Just sayin… 😉


  • @Gerald Spezio

    Nummo Nemesis, nobody demonstrates complete asininity better than you.

    You is a real prevert.

    I send much LOVE to you 🙂

    Believe in a love that is being stored up for you like an inheritance, and have faith that in this love there is a strength and a blessing so large that you can travel as far as you wish without having to step outside it.

    ― Rainer Maria Rilke

  • Science cannot reconcile itself with the unknowable, or, from a human perspective, the not-worth-knowing, for which the word ‘God’ is simply a handy synonym.

    Where you stand, a few miles beneath your feet, a hell where nothing human can survive, or would wish to, the outer containment of a nuclear furnace. A few miles above your head, a hell where nothing human can survive, or would wish to.

    Caught in between, we survive, for a while, conditional on our participation in an inter and intra-species holocaust.

    In this situation, every phantom provisional security that human artifice can devise simply throws the inhospitable wasteland beyond into starker relief.

    Which is why the compulsive insatiable upgrading of phantom securities is the quintessential human activity. Even to the point at which the biosphere itself has to be sacrificed in the attempt to achieve them.

  • good morning everyone

    As scientists worry about rapidly warming world, U.S. public doesn’t – ‘If the American population were left to lead on the issue of climate, it’s just not going to happen’

    http://www.desdemonadespair.net/2015/11/as-scientists-worry-about-rapidly.html

    [the sample size of the survey that this opinion is based on is very small]

    [Of course the French, after just having had that false flag op happen (you know, conveniently, JUST BEFORE these climate talks) have BANNED any protesting (for the protesters well-being, of course), but the citizenry respond:]

    Video: French police fire teargas to disperse climate protest
    http://www.desdemonadespair.net/2015/11/french-police-fire-teargas-to-disperse.html

    Thousands of shoes were placed in the city’s sprawling central plaza to represent citizens urging a climate agreement [Reuters]

  • Space and time have no beginning and no end. There have been an infinite number of universes in time with no beginning and no end. After one universe collapses another one forms in a different part of space or in a different time. I suspect there are an infinite number of universes out there that are way too far for their light to ever reach us before our sun blows up. I suspect there have been an infinite number of universes in endless space over endless time.

    There is no beginning of time, there is no end to space. Because we cannot comprehend this, we assume time began somewhere and will end some day when all matter in our universe collapses. But, somewhere infinitely far away another universe is born. Stars are born and die with such frequency that life cannot exist in 90% of the universe due to supernova and the like. This explains why we can’t find signs of life out there. So while an infinite number of monkeys typing over an infinite period of time may result in one of them typing Romeo and Juliette, and while the odds of them actually doing so are exceedingly slim, there still might be life as we know it somewhere in the infinity of space and time, just maybe not in our universe and not in our time. And, just as it is very unlikely to conceive of one of those monkeys actually typing Romeo and Juliette, so it may be that life is anomalous in all the universes over endless time. Even on the time/space scales of infinity, life may be exceedingly rare and brief.

    We will soon be gone and unlikely to be missed. No one questions whether a doomer is right, they only question the timing.

    There are only 2 people who will try to tell you crazy things with a straight face, physicists and priests. There may be other parallel universes in addition to our own in the same time/space, but this shit is too thick to get past my bullshit detector. Mathematics only explains a small fraction of the universe. But, what do I know, I just a guy who cuts grass in a trailer park in Canada who always loved to get high and blow his mind thinking about this stuff.

  • Politicians and economists will try to tell you cray cray stuff with a straight face, but they don’t count.

  • Stars are like sperm, most of them are wasted, but while most of them die lifeless, sometimes one of them survives is destined to give life.
    Sometimes life begats intelligence, just not in my case.

  • Whoops, there goes another universe.

  • or is that galaxy

  • Vacle Smil says the new off peak load our gadgets place on energy infrastructure precludes renewable energy storage efficiencies required in a globalized economy. We will have to clean up the existing power infrastructure. Renewable energy is too resource intensive to retrofit our power demand infrastructure. We cannot give every child on earth a solar powered cell phone to blather on about biogeochemical energy economic ecology, and some such nonsense. Every letter we type is on an unsustainable planetary scale. This is why I over-post. It’s essentially a dairy of doom every day for breakfast.

  • @Apneaman:
    It takes more faith to believe in the current version of “Science” and the ridiculous stories you dream up for how we all got here than it does to believe in “God”, or “Great Spirit” or a “Power Greater than Yourself”. It seems like your story changes every time someone writes a paper. Well, “God” wrote several “Papers” and compiled them into the best selling book in history. THE BIBLE. And the story sticks to this day.
    It looks like you will be getting the “Proof” you seek soon enough. The only thing that will keep NTHE from exterminating Mankind will be the 2nd coming of Christ. The story has already been written and will most likely happen soon.

    I wish you well,
    John

  • Give it up John, that Book was not written by God, if you do any research, it wasn’t even compiled until at least a century after the victim of all-too-human savagery died. Not only that, but many “chapters” were deleted in the process.

    The proof you refer to IS BROUGHT ON BY OUR OWN POLLUTION and OVERPOPULATION – as decreed in your Book (ya know – “go forth and multiply,” and “subdue the earth” and all).

    Good luck with waiting for the 2nd coming.


  • I really like the book of Daniel:

    You saw, O king, and behold, a great image. This image, mighty and of exceeding brightness, stood before you, and its appearance was frightening. The head of this image was of fine gold, its chest and arms of silver, its middle and thighs of bronze, legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. As you looked, a stone was cut out by no human hand, and it struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces. Then the iron, the clay, the bronze, the silver, and the gold, all together were broken in pieces, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, so that not a trace of them could be found. But the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth.

    Sounds like bad news for those funny “Kings/Rulers” of Earth. Who can be so dumb to build a Statue/Idol/Image/Empire this way? Head of gold, feet of iron and clay, harr harr 3:-)

    Without music, life would be a mistake.

    Friedrich Nietzsche


  • The entire first page of seemorerocks post today deals with climate and “the talks”

    Monday, 30 November 2015
    COP21 – a New Zealand perspective

    No Climate For Change
    The Paris conference will deliver only paper promises on global warming

    http://robinwestenra.blogspot.co.nz/

    [in comments from kevin (hester), down the thread a bit]

    The significance of the word ‘Abrupt’ cannot be underestimated and brings into question the subject of ‘Climate Tipping Points’ and how rapidly they will tip the biosphere into a level of chaos that will make the current climate disruption seem like “ The Good Old Days”.

    Read Professor Guy McPherson’s monster climate change essay detailing over 50 positive reinforcing feedback loops / tipping points
    [link provided]

    My own position with regard to our climate catastrophe is that we are past “ The point of no return” as our polar ice caps are melting in an unstoppable death spiral, faster than previously thought with huge quantities of methane being released from both the permafrost, the sub-marine clathrate deposits and remarkably from peat bogs burning in Siberia and the 11,000 forest fires currently burning in Indonesia which are emitting more carbon than the USA which before these fires were deliberately started was the world’s 2nd largest emitter. The Indonesian fires alone are the equivalent of the second largest country in terms of emissions on this planet appearing out of nowhere, whilst we have 8.5 million acres burning in America alone and millions of acres burning uncontrollably in Siberia.

    Abrupt climate change is now upon us and we need to do Everything within our power to reduce our emissions which brings us to the issue of the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement. [much more]

  • I see Callaghan already has cabin fever and it ain’t even winter yet.

    Keep on mockin‘ in the free world!

  • At the end of the universe there is only the sweet trolley!

  • Hey Tom:
    I just wanted to express my point of view. I am not a religious zealot bashing people with a Bible. I agree with Guy and most of us here that the end is near for us Humans. I am just trying to make sense of all of this. I don’t think suicide is the answer. I am dealing with a lot of grief over this just like everybody else. I am just trying to share my faith with others in the hope that they will benefit from it and be able to live comfortably until the game is over. Please forgive me if I offended you or anyone here. I genuinely love you and everybody here. I think Guy is right that “Only Love Remains” and I find it very difficult to keep my views to myself when I know that there is a possibility that someone here could benefit from a different way of seeing things.

    I love you and wish you well,
    John.

  • .
    @Helene Love

    So sorry about your little buddy. Hugs.

    .

    What’s up with Obama and his last minute caveat that any results from Paris not be legally binding? What’s the point then? (Not that anything makes a difference anyway.)

    That means they could’ve done more good by just cancelling the talks and saving on the jet fuel they all burnt getting there on their private air yachts.

    Anyway. I’m more concerned about Helene’s heart right now anyway, frankly. Loves them little aminals I do. RIP lil’ buddy.

  • when we arrive at this point, eg nothing
    well, we’ve gone too far
    semantics/perspective

    If someone asks me, “Did you eat your cheerios?”
    I say, “Yep, NOTHING left here. Give me more, please”
    Now the asker doesn’t say, “No! Not truly empty.”
    Nothing must mean different things….

    Like Bruce sang,”Nobody knows where loves goes, but when it’s gone, it’s gone, gone, gone.”

    If you say it 3-times….

    Sometimes it is OK to just say out-loud, “I don’t know.”

  • And, just as it is very unlikely to conceive of one of those monkeys actually typing Romeo and Juliette, so it may be that life is anomalous in all the universes over endless time.

    We might make it in some other part of the multiverse or might have made it at a different time in this part, but here & now the dice were loaded from the start.

    @Artleads…thanks for the kind words.

  • John: no offense taken. i hope your faith sustains you throughout, though i gave up on that myth a long time ago. All the best, my friend.

  • Just to be a petty-minded grammar-hound, by my reckoning the verb ‘beget’ has been mis-conjugated twice already in this thread, so I’d just like to begot my own mis-conjugation, in case it’s a joke I don’t get..

    Karma remorselessly dictates that I will shortly be commiting an unintended grammatic blunder of my own, and your whole reincarnation schedule may hinge on your reaction… (or is it might hinge?)

    High stakes.. There is no ‘right’ answer.. just like it is for those poor suits converging on Paris right now? Yeah… I know…. but consider sending them some good vibes ‘n’ compassion… if you have any to spare..


  • i hope your faith sustains you throughout

    A great word from a great man, Respect.

    I consider myself some kind of agnostic, so I am lucky, I don’t have to decide who is right, science or religion, muhahaha.

    Yes, my condolences shurely fly out to you, Helene Love. I know how it feels, I had two dogs. Fuck infinity, I don’t cling to it, infinity can wait, hahaha 😀

    A Dog Has Died

    My dog has died.
    I buried him in the garden
    next to a rusted old machine.

    Some day I’ll join him right there,
    but now he’s gone with his shaggy coat,
    his bad manners and his cold nose,
    and I, the materialist, who never believed
    in any promised heaven in the sky
    for any human being,
    I believe in a heaven I’ll never enter.
    Yes, I believe in a heaven for all dogdom
    where my dog waits for my arrival
    waving his fan-like tail in friendship.

    Ai, I’ll not speak of sadness here on earth,
    of having lost a companion
    who was never servile.
    His friendship for me, like that of a porcupine
    withholding its authority,
    was the friendship of a star, aloof,
    with no more intimacy than was called for,
    with no exaggerations:
    he never climbed all over my clothes
    filling me full of his hair or his mange,
    he never rubbed up against my knee
    like other dogs obsessed with sex.

    No, my dog used to gaze at me,
    paying me the attention I need,
    the attention required
    to make a vain person like me understand
    that, being a dog, he was wasting time,
    but, with those eyes so much purer than mine,
    he’d keep on gazing at me
    with a look that reserved for me alone
    all his sweet and shaggy life,
    always near me, never troubling me,
    and asking nothing.

    Ai, how many times have I envied his tail
    as we walked together on the shores of the sea
    in the lonely winter of Isla Negra
    where the wintering birds filled the sky
    and my hairy dog was jumping about
    full of the voltage of the sea’s movement:
    my wandering dog, sniffing away
    with his golden tail held high,
    face to face with the ocean’s spray.

    Joyful, joyful, joyful,
    as only dogs know how to be happy
    with only the autonomy
    of their shameless spirit.

    There are no good-byes for my dog who has died,
    and we don’t now and never did lie to each other.

    So now he’s gone and I buried him,
    and that’s all there is to it.

    – Pablo Neruda

  • @ Robert Callaghan Says:
    November 30th, 2015 at 5:22 am

    Stars are like sperm, most of them are wasted, but while most of them die lifeless, sometimes one of them survives is destined to give life.

    Are you a “student” of Fractal Geometries? Are you channeling Benoit Mandelbrot? Your observations may be truer than you know.

    Sometimes life begats [sic] intelligence, just not in my case.

    Au contraire, mes ami.

    @ Zarquon Says:
    November 30th, 2015 at 9:04 am

    At the end of the universe there is only the sweet trolley!
    [embedded HHGttU video]

    Haven’t had the time to listen/watch, yet, but many thanks as that MAY be my favorite book of the original D.A. trilogy! (Hard to choose between it and “So Long and Thanks for All the Fish.”) Muchas gracias, where else to “see” dining dead rock-stars and starships with infinitely slippery paint-jobs, eh?

    @ John Lynch Says:
    November 30th, 2015 at 9:21 am

    …I am not a religious zealot bashing people with a Bible. I agree with Guy and most of us here that the end is near for us Humans.

    Well, that’s a start and, perhaps, a good one. Phraseology can be important in “effective” and “meaningful” communications… go figure.

    … I am just trying to make sense of all of this…

    Well, good luck with that. Seems this blog’s entire existence has been dedicated to that end and, well, there you have it. “Progress” is a “many-splendored” thing, especially in its regressive sense.

  • A new informative piece by Scribbler on the Amazon Rain Forest burning & cooking, including a great visual about the droughtin South America.

    Reading Robert’s comments is brain bending because Robert remains optimistic for a future solution.

    “The greatest rainforest in the world, sometimes called Earth’s lungs, is burning, blackening, and belching out a thick pulse of carbon dioxide into an atmosphere that is already greatly over-burdened with industry-emitted greenhouse gasses. The world’s largest watershed and remaining largest rainforest combined now finds itself in a crisis of human making. A set of insults that may not now be reversible as the forest begins to succumb to both drought and fire.”

    https://robertscribbler.com/2015/11/30/brazils-great-amazon-rainforest-burns-as-parched-megacities-fall-under-existential-threat/#comments

  • For Kevin Moore
    (and anyone who’d rather not sit through 5+ hours of the audio book)

    Or as Jimi might have said, “Oh, there ain’t no nothing nowhere…

  • yeah…love those bible quotes. great poetry.

  • There’s another sense in which we are living in a multiverse. According to my favorite philosopher, Jose Ortega y Gasset, each human being, and by analogy, each living thing is surrounded by a universe consisting of everything that occurs or happens within their lives. According to Ortega, as he is commonly referred to, “My Life consist of I and My Circumstance.” For human beings, this includes not only physical phenomena, which is sometimes treated by physical scientists as if it were THE UNIVERSE, but also by mental phenomena, social phenomena and even spiritual phenomena. It is well known that individual human beings have a whole range of differences in their ability to experience even physical phenomena. Even more so, when it comes to mental, social and spiritual phenomena. The variety is enormous. So each human person has a vast network of interacting phenomena with which they have to deal, which Ortega lumps together with the term “My Circumstance”. Through social conditioning infants are taught a somewhat unified set of interpretations of and responses to their circumstance that are customary for the culture in which they are raised. As they grow older, a few are able to escape this conditioning and learn about other ways of interpreting and responding to their circumstance or the phenomena they experience, and fewer still are able to create new ways of interpreting and responding. This is all a dynamic system in which not only are the physical phenomena themselves changing, as we now see with Climate Change, but also the range of interpretations and responses to these phenomena are possible. And so, as “early responders” to the possibility, even the probability of Near Term Human Extinction, we are in a special place among all other human beings. Whether we decide to continue our current activities and quietly share empathy with all those who will gradually become aware of what is going to happen, or those who decide to change their lifestyle as a response, we cannot block from our thoughts the impending fate that we, in combination with our physical circumstances, have in store. However, there is no prescribed behavior, since for all human beings living HERE AND NOW, as David Ray Griffin has illustrated in his recent book, Abrupt Climate Change and the resulting Near Term Human Extinction is UNPRECEDENTED! (For a few introductory essys of my feeble attempt (alas incomplete)to present the philosophy of Ortega y Gasset, see my webpage: http://longknowledge.wordpress.com/ortega-y-gasset-as-a-proto-environmental-pragmatist/. There is also an extensive bibliography of works in English by and about Ortega, alas also incomplete, here: http://longknowledge.wordpress.com/2013/07/13/for-many-years/.

  • @John Lynch: “when [biblical prophecies] describe the end , it looks a lot like what we are about to experience too.”

    A stopped clock is right twice a day, and many varieties of religious doomers have been preaching TEOTW for thousands of years.

    JL: “the only thing that will keep NTHE from exterminating Mankind will be the 2nd coming of Christ.”

    In fact, IIRC, Jesus IN THE BIBLE declared the apocalypse/Second Coming would occur within the lifetime of his contemporary followers. So your deity either lied to you all, or the Bible is not true. [Gee whiz! Nobody could have predicted!] My money is on the latter.

    “Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away till all these things take place.”

    “I tell you truly, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God.”

    Oops!

    Respectfully, I ask you to spare us any twisted apologetics as to why these statements should NOT be taken literally, while otherwise claiming the larger, entire, wacky, tour-de-force paeon to a narcissistic sadist to be literally true.

  • To paraphrase Guy: If you think immortality –- in either physical or spiritual form –- would be a good thing, you don’t understand infinity.

  • Helene Love: Sad about your dog and the loss to you.

    For those who follow a scriptural tradition, it is like a pole-vaulter holding securely onto a pole. A moment comes when one must let go of the pole or lose the medal. Letting go a moment too soon also ain’t good. As is holding it loosely, like many dabblers are wont to do. The same is true for all valid scriptural teachings. It is quite explicit in the Vedic and associated traditions, such as Buddhism.

  • “Clean Energy Could Fuel Most Countries by 2050, Study Shows”

    http://insideclimatenews.org/news/27112015/here%E2%80%99s-how-139-countries-could-run-100-percent-clean-energy-2050

    that’s actually true ! Except those countries would be empty countries devoid of people

  • .
    My not so very serious thoughts for the day …

    Could you imagine how much it would suck to die and find out that you actually couldn’t ever escape perpetual existence? To find out that earthly illusion was actually just a chance to escape from soul crushing foreverness for at least a short period of time by briefly entertaining the possibility of a finite existence? Then imagine the horror at finding out that you’d just destroyed the one place where you could temporarily escape from the horror of infinite being? Egad!

    Damn, going to have nightmares tonight now I think. (Naughtmares?)

    I’ll tell ya, this better be flap nappin’ over when I croak ! (shudder)

    🙁

    (Actually, I have no attachments to the outcome. To me, everything just sort of is.)

    Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream …

    (Reaches for Kevlar suit … )

  • @ Jackson Davis Says:
    November 30th, 2015 at 4:03 pm

    There’s another sense in which we are living in a multiverse. According to my favorite philosopher, Jose Ortega y Gasset,…

    WITHOUT ANY DOUBT, that is THE MOST poignant and profound (not to mention astute) comment I’ve EVER read on this blog or any other!!! I’ve not heard of or read anything by or about that philosopher but I, for one, have bookmarked your link for further perusal in the “near” future. Thank you! Alas, tonight is for “Fargo,” for which I experience shame and anticipate punishment.

  • Oh, yeah! I forgot. To repeat a previous poster: ” Fuck infinity; we are here now!!!”

  • @ Lidia:
    I will spare you the “Twisted Apologetics”. All I ask in return is that “Scientists” spare me their own “Twisted Apologetics” about how all things got here.
    ie: “Nothing exploding into everything”, and them constantly changing their “Theories” every time you turn around. There is lots of fraud in “Science” too. Look at Jan Hendrik Schön from Bell labs. He had a PhD in Physics that was revoked after he was caught red handed falsifying Studies that he was doing at Bell. He was putting out 2 papers a month or so and had the whole Scientific community hoodwinked until he was finally caught. The motive apparently was a desire for greatness in the Scientific community.
    In the Climate Change arena, you see all these so-called “Scientists” saying anything the Fossil Fuel Industry wants them to say just for a few lousy dollars. This is putting all humanity in jeopardy. Talk about “Twisted Apologetics”, these guys are Dr’s too and have no problem betraying us just for a check.
    Now, we are facing what appears to be NTHE and people criticize me just because I believe in “God”. If you guys had anything near reliable info about this stuff I would be happy to take your word for it but all I see is “Scientists” peddling their junk Science just for money or fame. They cant even tell me for sure how the Moon got there. Ask them and see. The best “Theory” says that a object the size of Mars collided with Earth and the Moon formed out of the ejected matter that was left over!
    Really !
    All that happened without the Earth losing its orbit around the Sun ! Then the Moon formed into a relatively near perfect orbit around Earth which just happened to be a vital element to support life on Earth due to tidal interactions ect..

    And people think I am nuts to believe in God ?

    If the Bible is true, we will be seeing a lot of “Miraculous” events happening as NTHE unfolds before our very eyes. We should be able to even follow a timeline of events as they happen. A fiction book called “Left Behind” by a Christian author attempts to put that timeline together. We will finally be able to see if the Bible is true or not. I pray that you and everyone here are able to survive this OK.
    Sincerely
    John Lynch

  • Colin. If you (or anyone else for that matter) wish to continue a discussion of Ortega’s philosophy you can send me a message via Facebook, where I am a member of the NTHE Support Group as well as the NTHE Love Group. It helps alleviate the despair I have been experiencing lately of seeing all my work to have been in vain.

  • John Lynch & Lydia & LWA
    Your wish is always granted for you are in mortal form you wish for immortality and voila You are immortal .. And than you wish to be mortal again …. You know why ? Only mortality can give you the experience of authenticity . Fear of loss giving you the real experience whatever that is the authentic the ultimate experience . You are immortal there is no real game you can`t loose . You would know in advance that you are coming out on the other side ok .. That`s uninteresting .This death thing is the coolest shit ever happening to anyone and anything some interesting ideas also along these lines http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=heGCdpuhLso and the poem to go with it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mUsDYuTZUmw and also a song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i4WV9799SBE

  • Science is self correcting.

  • The Bible starts with a disclaimer:
    בראשית ברא אלהים את חשמים ואת חארץ
    “By a beginning” (usually translated as “In the beginning”), in other words, “One way to tell the story”. And as the Kabbalah points out, when the Divine Spirit was breathed into the clay imoge thereby animating it, the Spirit did not separate off a portion of itself, since it is always whole. That is why the subtlest aspect of the individual, the Yechida, is the subtlest aspect of the Divine, the Ain Sof. That is why when Moses met the Divine it was “face in face” (usually translated as “face to face”). There is no possibility of “salvation”, since ultimately there is nothing to be saved.

    Ain Sof is “the Limitless Void”, a void that had to first create some room within itself for a universe, and then had to shield the universe from its radiance so that the universe would not instantly blend back in. The Kabbalistic world-view is not that different from the Vedic and Buddhist traditions.

  • How in the hell am I going to make money on infinity.Christian heaven? give me your soul and i’ll let you live there for infinity. Armageddon is coming who knew it was a CO2 molecule. What we need to find is another capitalist planet low on CO2 and sell it to them throwing in depleted uranium. Why do I find this all so funny? Must be an eighth stage .Like you can leave your body and hover above everything with complete understanding by being able to put yourself in everything else’s “shoes” so to speak.We shouldn’t be doing anything that fucks with mother nature but we do it anyway.Stupid monkey.

  • ‘God says in the Bible that He “stretched out the heavens”
    which is why they are expanding and even now accelerating.’

    ‘This has to do with NTE, as well: If one cares about a person, is it better to allow them to wallow in illusions that make them happy, or burst their bubble, so that they might achieve a greater potential for dealing with the actual crises of our world?’

    lidia, great question! one i’ve thought of from time to time for some time now, ever since i surrealized how fucked up and fucked things are. the thing is, radical change in knowledge/perception/understanding must happen one sherson at a time, resulting in great disruption of individual lives, families, communities, and societies, resulting in a good deal of misfortune, conflict, sometimes violent, suffering and death, because that’s just the way revolutions role, regardless of how peaceful and painless one might wish the process to be. so, the option of trying to be a radical slayer of ignorance, delusion, and misinformation (a.k.a. the status quo) is fraught with difficulty and danger. otoh, just sitting back and keeping yer yap shut, letting everyone go on their merry way to destruction… that path has it’s own thorns. we all know the personal familial social disruption to come when nature bats last will be even greater than any anthropomorphic revolution by far, so i guess it’s a case of pay the piper now by ‘choice’ and/or pay later by force. either way, u’re/we’re screwed.

    of course, the point seems moot considering that the vast majority of sheeple wallow in illusion(s) that that are virtually impervious to facts and logic.

  • How in the hell am I going to make money on infinity.Christian heaven? give me your soul and i’ll let you live there for infinity. Armageddon is coming who knew it was a CO2 molecule. What we need to find is another capitalist planet low on CO2 and sell it to them throwing in depleted uranium. Why do I find this all so funny? Must be an eighth stage .Like you can leave your body and hover above everything with complete understanding by being able to put yourself in everything else’s “shoes” so to speak.We shouldn’t be doing anything that fucks with mother nature but we do it anyway.Stupid monkey.
    Feeling bad for Mr Beckwith and his bargaining hope.One day people will realize and have to change . hehehe

  • Just some liberal class/doomer fun…

    ‘Angry Yoga’

    And,

    ‘Angrier Yoga’

    😉

  • Listening to Christians attempt to debunk the laws of probability has got to have its own special level in purgatory, somewhere between having to listen to young children shrill in public for eternity and being skinned alive with a compostable fork.

    Oh Dear Heavenly Fodder, please save us from your followers, or at least get around to rapturing the Jesus freaks already, so that we sinners can roast marshmallows down below in peace before we go extinct.

  • babajingo — you’ve caused me to skip (temporarily) over the rest of the posts from the fine minds huddled together here in Guy’s Refugee Camp, with one of my rediscovered favorite songs of this year: Under the Milky Way Tonight.

    And because it seems to be the larger theme of the thread, and a question I’ve wanted to post for awhile.

    When I get out of my car at night, especially on those few crisp, clear nights, and walk the 20 yards from garage to house, I am usually stopped in my tracks by the need to look up at the stars. (I can see the North Star just over the treetops, and I remember on my visit to Kevin Moore’s island when I “saw the Southern Cross for the first time…” CS&N)

    And more often of late, I think of those who are gathered here, and what we contemplate, which is that the last humans will be looking up at the stars, for the last times. The stars, of course, will continue to shine on, miraculously so.

    But, inspired by Guy’s prodding us to live life to the fullest, I now see these sparkly things with a larger sense of awe (maybe even shock), and out of my mouth, aloud, comes “HOLY F*&#ING S@*T!” which is about all an addled and newly-humbled human brain ought to be entitled to say about them.

    I wonder if (and hope that) all others here can see the stars from their homes, and do you have a similar sense of astonishment that this is actually something that my eyes can see, and not know the beginning of what really is up there?

    OK, back to reading…

  • Oh and the original

    ‘Blue Yoga’

    Does seeing this make a damn difference?

    Not at all, and I liken it to the level of revolutionary fervor the Simpsons has generated….? So adept at contemporary satire, it wags the tail that The Trueman Show so eloquently illustrated, that the screen will not free you, it merely allows a profit stream, and a feel good period while transfixed, ( not to be confused with transcended…ha ha).

    We all know what needs to be done, just not possible with Newtonian physics, that all but a few live by.

    One for Carl…

    ‘Carl Sagan’s last interview with Charlie Rose’

    Cheers.

    😉

  • The Ecstasy of GOLD.

  • There are an infinite number of ways of leaving our planet. One suggestion is that I “slip out the back”!

  • @Jackson Davies

    Jack, you could very well slip out the back.
    Or, Lee could just drop off the key.
    Gus could, well, you know the drill.

    .

  • Atmospheric CO2 401.42ppm

    One result does not a catastrophe make, but rather high for the time of year.

    http://scripps.ucsd.edu/programs/keelingcurve/wp-content/plugins/sio-bluemoon/graphs/mlo_two_years.png

  • Henry

    My father taught me the basics of the northern sky in Southampton, and as a teenager I took great interest in astronomy.

    The first few months of life in NZ felt weird at night because Orion was upside down and Great Bear and Pole Star were nowhere to be seen.

    The night sky in Auckland is often muggy and only bright stars are visible, but here on the west coast, away from most of the pollution (unless Australia is on fire) the night skies are spectacular. The major moons of Jupiter often are easily visible with standard binoculars, as is the Orion Nebula. On really clear nights the Milky Way really does look like a band of white across the sky to the naked eye, and binoculars or a telescope make it look spooky, such is the density of stars.

    On Moonless nights it is possible to see sufficiently well to walk a path by the light of Jupiter: I jest not. Which demonstrates the incredible range of photon sensitivity of human eyes.

    The down side to the clear skies is the horrific level of UV, which results in a very high incidence of skin cancer, especially amongst those who failed to protect themselves.

    http://www.niwa.co.nz/static/uv-data/uvi_forecast/uvi_forecast_n_plymouth.png

  • Thanks for explaining Hawkings book: ” Universes come and go, and they collapse and arise in events called singularities.” I didn’t get past the introduction! lol 🙂

  • This is what I mean to say too, which you say so well, Henry!

    “But, inspired by Guy’s prodding us to live life to the fullest, I now see these sparkly things with a larger sense of awe (maybe even shock), and out of my mouth, aloud, comes “HOLY F*&#ING S@*T!” which is about all an addled and newly-humbled human brain ought to be entitled to say about them.

    I wonder if (and hope that) all others here can see the stars from their homes, and do you have a similar sense of astonishment that this is actually something that my eyes can see, and not know the beginning of what really is up there?”

    I don’t think we ever had a handle on “The Truth”. And today, in our disconnected state, we are that much farther away from it.

    As many here would, I consider myself a truth seeker. And I often wonder if there is such a static thing as the truth. Perhaps it’s a moving target, ever changing, and always teasing and even mocking the truth-seeker.

    Daniel’s compilation of weird happenings a few threads ago is a case in point. We don’t know for sure exactly what’s going on in this hyper-connected world of ours. Despite living in the information era, despite having access to vast treasure troves of data and information at our fingertips, we are actually not privy to the most important and vital bits of information that could potentially throw our carefully cobbled-together worldviews into a spiraling spin.

    If epistemology is about answering the question: “how do we know what we know?”, we’re utterly clueless. It’s an epistemological clusterfuck of vast proportions that we’re having to live through.

    It wasn’t always this way. Human beings used to be more connected to the creation around them, in the absence of artificial barriers. Before we separated ourselves from the rest of creation, we were great listeners, ever attentive, always alert, and we knew, more certainly than we do today, the answer to the question, “how do we know what we know?” Ask an indigenous person how she knows so much about that herb or that mineral. Her response would be, in a rather nonchalant manner, “the plant told me”, or “the rock told me its story”. We laugh at such responses today, in our day and age of extreme separation from our original nature.

    Only a culture that has lost connection to land multiples the way our culture has. Only a culture that has stopped listening to Mother Earth goes ahead and builds cities. Only a culture that lives largely in cities believes in continuous progress. Only a culture that believes in progress ignores the prospect of NTE.

    A friend of mine recently said he believes in “human ingenuity” when I presented our predicament to him. I wasn’t surprised. It fits.

    But what we’re left with, even today, is the capacity to wonder about it all. We’re going to lose that too, if we’re not careful, with the onslaught of the deterministic worldview.

    So while we still can, let’s look at those shiny stars (or imagine them if they’re blocked by city smog) and wonder what our ancestors might have felt when they looked up at the very same stars. I find peace when I try and empathize with my tribal ancestors.

    We were all tribal at one point. All indigenous. All native to land. Our ancestors deserve a little respect for leaving us this beautiful planet that we have so quickly fucked up. Disrespect to native, tribal and indigenous peoples, and to our very ancestors goes hand in hand with our current situation. They are highly correlated. No surprises there.

    I wonder how I can do a better job of getting this point across to some of my friends. That brings me to another related issue: it’s about the people. It’s about the people around us.

    The scientist commits fraud to impress his people, his fellow scientists. The wealthy sociopath plays his ruthless moves to win that game he plays with his fellow sociopaths. The wealthy sociopath is not out to impress the scientist. It’s about his people. He’s not interested in hearing the commoner’s pleas because the commoner is not one of his people. As much as we talk about oneness, tolerance, empathy, etc., it seems humans have always connected with some more than with others. Back in the day, it was the tribe. Today, with a metastasized human cancer on the planet and the dislocation it has engendered, it’s one or more of many different factors that humans identify who their people are vs. who are not. But it’s always about who our people are, even in the last throes.

    And so, we come here to the beach of doom to share our hearts and minds with our fellows. To be in community, albeit virtual. We come here asking the question, “where are my people?”

    I’m very thankful for this community here. The “shared reality” that I don’t find with my real-life friends, I find here. I have seen some superb comments lately by many… very thought-provoking comments, highly informative comments, and some hilariously humorous ones. Thank you for being “my people”. Thank you to E. Farber, DJL et al. and Guy for the essays.

  • In this situation, I offer the same advice that Viktor Frankl wrote after his experience in the Nazi death camps. Even if there is no possibility of hope, we always have the ability to find meaning. People can live without hope, so long as they can find meaning somewhere in their lives. This is how I have lived since 2005, when I abandoned all hope that we might collectively fix the World Problematique. Since then I have lived by finding meaning, and it has led me to a far richer life.

    With climate at ‘breaking point’, leaders urge breakthrough in Paris

    PARIS (Reuters) – World leaders launched an ambitious attempt on Monday to hold back rising temperatures, with the United States and China leading calls for the climate summit in Paris to mark a decisive turn in the fight against global warming.

    In a series of opening addresses to the U.N. talks, heads of state and government exhorted each other to find common cause in two weeks of bargaining to steer the global economy away from its dependence on fossil fuels. French President Francois Hollande said the world was at a “breaking point”.

    The leaders arrived in Paris with high expectations and armed with promises to act. After decades of struggling negotiations and the failure of a summit in Copenhagen six years ago, some form of agreement – likely to be the strongest global climate pact yet – appears all but assured by mid-December.

    “What should give us hope that this is a turning point, that this is the moment we finally determined we would save our planet, is the fact that our nations share a sense of urgency about this challenge and a growing realization that it is within our power to do something about it,” said U.S. President Barack Obama, one of the first leaders to speak at the summit.

    The leaders gathered in a vast conference center at Le Bourget airfield. In all, 195 countries are part of the unwieldy negotiating process, with a variety of leadership styles and ideologies that has made consensus elusive in the past.

    Key issues, notably how to divide the global bill to pay for a shift to renewable energy, are still contentious.

    “Climate justice demands that the little carbon space we still have, developing countries should have enough room to grow,” said India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a key player because of his country’s size and its heavy dependence on coal.

  • Woke early, couldn’t sleep and am I glad I did get up. Sipped coffee and viewed a video concerning COP21/Climate Change. It seems “they” (the Greenies, I guess)have illuminated the pyramids and the Sphinx at Giza. It is done,now everything will be alright.

  • I can guarantee you’ll understand infinity after reading this my morning attack on Klein-McKibbenism.

    My omment posted on thebulletin.org:

    Klein/McKibben are funded by the Rockefellers, the Ford Foundation and assorted private corporate interests to insure public acceptance of government/corporate control over any future carbon taxes.

    If James Hansen’s idea that carbon taxes go 100% back to private citizens with 0% for corporate-government institutions, the power fiscal dynamic will collapse. I suspect she’s not smart enough to know what she’s doing after being thrust into greatness..

    The world is set to run out of water so fast that we won’t even have the time or money for transition to renewable energy as Vaclav Smil, who’s a “real” energy expert would tell you here:

    The Green Energy Trap from collapse

    Link:

    http://thebulletin.org/naomi-klein-climate-change-makes-hotter-and-meaner-world

  • The feel good Ferguson doc on HuffPo is about the level of Klein’s fairy tales although I have to admit the farm history and Indonesian segment are excellent.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/time-to-choose-watch-the-new-film-from-oscar-winner-charles-ferguson_565c5678e4b079b2818acee0

  • EtyerePetyere “Only mortality can give you the experience of authenticity . Fear of loss giving you the real experience whatever that is the authentic the ultimate experience . You are immortal there is no real game you can`t loose.”
    Which explains the appeal of ‘free soloing’ mountain climbing. one wrong move and you’re done! Check this out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=leCAy1v1fnI


  • One of the most intelligent comments I have seen on the internet so far, Robin Datta hits the nail:

    For those who follow a scriptural tradition, it is like a pole-vaulter holding securely onto a pole. A moment comes when one must let go of the pole or lose the medal. Letting go a moment too soon also ain’t good. As is holding it loosely, like many dabblers are wont to do. The same is true for all valid scriptural teachings. It is quite explicit in the Vedic and associated traditions, such as Buddhism.

    And also this one:

    The Bible starts with a disclaimer:
    בראשית ברא אלהים את חשמים ואת חארץ
    “By a beginning” (usually translated as “In the beginning”), in other words, “One way to tell the story”…

    I highly apreciate your contributions!

    @Jackson Davis

    Thank you very much for your Essay about José Ortega y Gasset! It is incredibly enlightening indeed! I like that one:

    When a doctor asked Fontenelle what discomfort he felt at being ninety-nine years old, the acute old fumbler answered: “None, none, except . . . a little difficulty at just being.” That is perhaps the best definition of fundamental [radical] reality, of what there truly is, of Life: being as difficulty.

    Hahaha, that sums it all up perfectly!


    Quote cuntagious:

    To paraphrase Guy: If you think immortality –- in either physical or spiritual form –- would be a good thing, you don’t understand infinity.

    One can get used to inifinity, if one takes time and courage to do so 😉


    Quote LWA:

    Could you imagine how much it would suck to die and find out that you actually couldn’t ever escape perpetual existence?

    Huuuh… sounds like the Gates of Hell^^… but also to Nirvana 😎

    http://www.poemhunter.com/i/poem_images/130/life-and-death-67.jpg



    If you are 100% a slave of your tendencies, life is predetermined…

    – Sadhguru