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Your Ideology Should Be *No Ideology*

 
 
Fil Albuquerque
 
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Reply Tue 9 Apr, 2013 09:58 pm
@vikorr,
Yes we can't do away with ideology's nor that seams to be the underlying critique in this thread has ideology's serve a vital functional purpose...perhaps what is after all meant to say is to rather do away with linear polarized ideology's as new degrees of complexity in our world seam to require further steps of adaptation, a reorganization of the "software" operating our institutions and their underlying belief systems...in layman terms, a better appreciation for the gray scale. A cleverer more sophisticated moral code would be a step on the right direction.

...when your washing machine is broken you don't repair it by blaming its malfunctioning, you open it up and go check what is wrong...
vikorr
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Apr, 2013 09:46 pm
@Fil Albuquerque,
Perhaps a closer analogy would be :

When your washing machine isn't cleaning your clothes as it should - connect the water hose, turn the power on, and don't put oil in the detergent dispenser...and of course if all else fails, then you know it's likely the machinery isn't working as it was designed to (and it's time to look under the hood, as you say)...for likely someone tried to make it into a (let's say) vacuum cleaner without realising it...

They after all, both have electric motors.
Fil Albuquerque
 
  1  
Reply Wed 10 Apr, 2013 09:54 pm
@vikorr,
Fair enough... Mr. Green
0 Replies
 
medium-density
 
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Reply Thu 11 Apr, 2013 03:20 pm
@JLNobody,
Quote:
Zen thought, as I see it, advises us to see them for what they are: useful fictions.


Yes I appreciate this line on the ideology question very much. It is their utility which should concern us. How do we utilise them? Simplification is of course central, but if we interrogate what the simplification entails we may overturn more hateful practices. How often, for example, is the simplification made at the expense of needful nuance? I think racial prejudices can work in this way. Difference is difficult, scapegoats are easy. In getting around the hard work of confronting reality we make things worse for ourselves, ultimately. One of life's awful ironies.

I also think where ideology is doing the heavy-lifting for you on an issue (people will have their favourite examples of this) it should be harshly criticised. We all give up on reasoning after a certain amount of time/effort. The ease with which we do this depends on how much the ideology activated by the information means to us: What is the meaningful content of its' utility? How much better off are we, psychologically, in the comfort of belief versus the open flux of reason?

I would be very interested to hear how Zen practice could possibly lead to mind-expansion sufficient to encompass the world. I very much doubt this is anywhere near possible, but perhaps you and/or others could elaborate on this point?
medium-density
 
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Reply Thu 11 Apr, 2013 03:28 pm
@vikorr,
Quote:
Without both systems, we would be unable to cope with the day (automation makes life manageable)....why then would I want to do away with those systems?


I'm not exactly saying we should do away with organising principles. I'm saying I'm pretty confident that we can't, and that this is a shame given their destructive qualities.

Quote:
Language is a useful system...and yet language has power within my system. Do I then stop using Language because it has some power over me? Or do I start developing my Language to produce the results in me that I wish? Is choosing the latter ideology?


Choosing the latter might be ideology, depending on what course your development of language takes. The question is what is the proximate reason for you doing something. Once we have answered that we can examine whether the reason was bespoke to the needs of the situation, rather than readymade and simplifying (ideological).

The question of what exactly is driving all this gets towards the free will debate, which I'm wary to approach having recently exhausted a thread on that point.

JLNobody
 
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Reply Thu 11 Apr, 2013 05:52 pm
@medium-density,
Medium-density asks, what I feared someone would ask, "... how Zen practice could possibly lead to mind-expansion sufficient to encompass the world. I very much doubt this is anywhere near possible, but perhaps you and/or others could elaborate on this point?"

I should have said something like "mind-expansion" in the sense of identifying with the world. My comment about "shrinking the world to the size of our brains" was, of course, a metaphorical stab at the sin of "misplaced concreteness", of treating our abstract constructions of the world as if they were their referents.
0 Replies
 
vikorr
 
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Reply Thu 11 Apr, 2013 06:43 pm
@medium-density,
Quote:
I'm not exactly saying we should do away with organising principles. I'm saying I'm pretty confident that we can't, and that this is a shame given their destructive qualities.
Wouldn't you say that 'organising principles' can only become destructive if (note, this if is a possibility, not a certainty):
- there is a lack of awareness; or
- the organising principle is poorly formed; or
- the wrong organising principle is chosen?

I understand most peoples concept of ideology, but due to how our brains work, I see little way of avoiding such...without a resulting litany of choices 'not to act' (which in reality is rarely the only way to handle a conflict, or even your life - which will face many conflicts...more if you act)...

...so my view is that philosophy should and can enhance 'doing' as well as 'being'

...part of doing is awareness, and part of doing is our numerous automatic systems. Expanding awareness is good, but I've found that awareness will often be subverted by your automated systems if they are poorly developed. I don't accept a general inaction as truly living (and I view 'passive being' as a poorer cousin of 'active being')...so the choice left is to develop both my awareness AND my automatic systems (The latter actually seems more difficult, and as you go about improving it, you gain a much greater understanding of both yourself, and other people, in relation to both systems, and awareness)

It is this fundamental view of mine that seeds itself in many of my answers (not all), and finds itself in my initial reply to this post.

Fundamental though it is - the repercussions of it seem to be always developing

--------------------

To me 'no ideology' at all isn't an important goal. But testing my beliefs and systems is (an important goal). Likely it achieves the same outcome, but the focus is on activity, rather than on a phrase that may have power to stop activity (as I mentioned earlier, language has power)
medium-density
 
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Reply Sun 14 Apr, 2013 01:40 am
@vikorr,
Quote:
Wouldn't you say that 'organising principles' can only become destructive if (note, this if is a possibility, not a certainty):
- there is a lack of awareness; or
- the organising principle is poorly formed; or
- the wrong organising principle is chosen?


Those are some good stipulations. "Destructive" is not the right word for what I meant. Perhaps I should have said "harmful", or even "unhelpful". Basically I'm saying that whenever we organise our informational intake via one principle over another we neglect some aspect of that information. There are ways of seeing, knowing, and understanding which we necessarily neglect in order not to spend a lifetime figuring out each individual iota of information. We're concise.

Coming decisively to an interpretation of any values-issue, without a political persuasion to guide us, is hard. This, to me, is a lamentable feature of our evolution. I'm not recommending a course of action to remedy this. I live within ideologies as much as the next person, because I can't invent beyond the parameters of my biology. It simply pays to notice this, I think. It helps in catching yourself out.

Quote:
To me 'no ideology' at all isn't an important goal. But testing my beliefs and systems is (an important goal). Likely it achieves the same outcome, but the focus is on activity, rather than on a phrase that may have power to stop activity (as I mentioned earlier, language has power)


Rejecting ideology is an active process, it makes strenuous mental and philosophical demands. Although, as you say, "testing my beliefs" could almost be a euphemism for the same. If you find that formulation more powerful or effective then I mustn't grumble.
vikorr
 
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Reply Sun 14 Apr, 2013 08:30 pm
@medium-density,
Quote:
Rejecting ideology is an active process, it makes strenuous mental and philosophical demands. Although, as you say, "testing my beliefs" could almost be a euphemism for the same.
I would think that one of the fundamentals ingredients to rejecting ideology would be to test your beliefs.

There are three spheres to test : self/individual, others, and social (I could include environmental but it's usually straight forward, and not necessary to this topic).

The first first requires a great deal of self-awareness...you can take that self-awareness to the nth degree.

The second requires selfless awareness - an ability to look at others and see them for who they really are, and what they are really feeling.

The third, requires that you take the above two awarenesses, and perform a bit of artistry - interpret how you affect each other through each and every emotion, intonation, eye contact, facial expression, body language, volume, spoken words, etc.

Interpreting your own emotions requires quite a deal of awareness. For example, do you know all the signs that something makes you discomfited or even mildly discomfited? Do you know what the feeling of discomfort actually is (ie. what it is actually a mild form of?). Do you know the repercussions of feelings discomfort in your life? Do you understand how much unecessary discomfort we experience because of our personal 'beliefs/ideologies'?...and do you know how to remove/ease away those discomforts that no longer serve you well?

To me - this is all just one part of testing my beliefs. I chose discomforts, because it is a fascinating area to learn about yourself. And removing unnecessary discomfits from your mind has numerous positive affects on your life.
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