I predict that during the next decades, we will increasingly experience ourselves as failing beings. We will experience ourselves as beings who collectively and stubbornly act against better knowledge, who
even under great time-pressure are unable, for psychological reasons,
to act jointly and efficiently and to put the necessary formation of
political will into effect. The collective self -image of the species Homo sapiens will increasingly be one of a being caught in evolved mechanisms of self -deception to the point of becoming a victim of its own actions.

Thomas Metzinger, Spirituality and intellectual honesty, an essay. (via blackestdespondency)




What is a flotation tank?

500 kg of Epsom salts are added to 1000 litres of water, creating a 30 cm deep solution, which is heated to 35.5 degrees C (skin temperature).

The temperature of the water means that once you are settled in the tank, it is virtually impossible to distinguish between parts of the body that are in contact with the water, and those that aren’t, in effect “fooling” the brain into believing that the person is floating in mid-air.


I must try this

(via pineal-gland)

[T]here’s a more insidious form of human-centric ontology, as found in many version of scientism. On the one hand, scientism insists that human consciousness is nothing special, and should be naturalized just like everything else. On the other hand, it also wants to preserve knowledge as a special kind of relation to the world quite different from the relations that raindrops and lizards have to the world. Another of putting it… for all their gloating over the fact that people are pieces of matter just like everything else, they also want to claim that the very status of that utterance is somehow special. For them, raindrops know nothing and lizards know very little, and some humans are more knowledgeable than others. This is only possible because thought is given a unique ability to negate and transcend immediate experience, which inanimate matter is never allowed to do in such theories, of course. In short, for all its noir claims that the human doesn’t exist, it elevates the structure of human thought to the ontological pinnacle.

Graham Harman (via josephhenrystaten)

Intellectual honesty is a special case of spirituality. It developed long before science, but after religion; it is a self-critical practice of epistemic action that is not bound to adaptive delusional systems. This practice includes the stance of the philosophical skeptic. After being accused of blasphemy and of corrupting the youths of Athens, Socrates said in his famous apology before the tribunal of 501 Athenians: “I neither know nor think that I know.” The philosophical virtue of skepticism is the ability to continually question the possibility of a secure, provable knowledge of truth, and to do so in a productive manner—the opposite of dogmatism. Skeptics are dangerous, because they are incorruptible.

Thomas Metzinger, Spirituality and Intellectual Honesty (via ludimagister)

Science, however, cannot create ends and, even less, instill them in human beings; science, at most, can supply the means by which to attain certain ends. But the ends themselves are conceived by personalities with lofty ethical ideals and—if these ends are not stillborn, but vital and vigorous—are adopted and carried forward by those many human beings who, half unconsciously, determine the slow evolution of society.
For these reasons, we should be on our guard not to overestimate science and scientific methods when it is a question of human problems; and we should not assume that experts are the only ones who have a right to express themselves on questions affecting the organization of society.

Albert Einstein, Why Socialism?

My boy Einstein telling it like it is.

(via pulstars)

In a culture of fear, we should expect the rise of new mechanisms of social control to deflect distrust, anxiety, and threat. Relying on the analysis of popular and academic texts, we examine one such mechanism, the label conspiracy theory, and explore how it works in public discourse to “go meta” by sidestepping the examination of evidence. Our findings suggest that authors use the conspiracy theorist label as (1) a routinized strategy of exclusion; (2) a reframing mechanism that deflects questions or concerns about power, corruption, and motive; and (3) an attack upon the personhood and competence of the questioner. This label becomes dangerous machinery at the transpersonal levels of media and academic discourse, symbolically stripping the claimant of the status of reasonable interlocutor—often to avoid the need to account for one’s own action or speech. We argue that this and similar mechanisms simultaneously control the flow of information and symbolically demobilize certain voices and issues in public discourse.

Husting et al. in their article ‘Dangerous Machinery: ‘Conspiracy Theorist’ as a Trans-personal Strategy of Exclusion’ 

"To realize that all your life, all your love, all your hate, all your memories, all your pain, it was all the same thing…

It was all the same dream, a dream that you had inside a locked room, a dream about being a person. And like a lot of dreams, there’s a monster at the end of it.”

-  Rust Cohle

  • Reblogged from (XO)