The Poison and Wine of Laughter – Part 2 (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 200)

A much different energy, whether isolated or commingling in its flow, accompanies the willful humor which may be implemented to tickle our awarenesses.

I believe that this delicious and relaxing wine of laughter can only be properly served and shared in the gobleted prisms of sparkling and chiming clarity. Its consumption  ebbs and flows only amongst those who prefer the good hearted spirit of celebrated comradery, understanding and reflection for all; toasts and counter toasts of sloshing wine, teasing and playful contemplative joy, to dull the razor’s edge for another, as much or even more so, than for yourself. It is the polished reflection of an acknowledged and shared higher awareness that may only arise out of the union of genuine engagement in which we mutually decide to smile and dance and frolic despite whatever else may be.

This vino of laughter is a magical elixir of lightness which brings counterbalance to the heaviest awareness of the dark realms of existence by protecting the totality of focus via its gulping defiance of complete surrender to the piecemeal density of the gloom. Jovial levity is not denial of or withdrawal from that infinite gloom or its unrelenting presence which is woven into all things; it is only a refusal to sink into the fathomless darkness, a refusal to allow oneself to hopelessly suffocate in the pure nullifying oblivion which lurks in depths below. The jesters of chosen levity have learned to whimsically walk upon that malignant swell and  even dance upon its blackwater when they find a kindred spirit who dares to stride along with them in the same defiant movements. It is a defiant communion that may properly align and balance all of the lightness and darkness gracefully and cursedly beknown to those who possess a highly enlightened awareness.

It is a saving grace of higher transcendence for those who might easily go mad or succumb to suicide without its tickling touch of perpetual light, love, and perspective.

As amusement most readily aligns with psychopathy/sociopathy and apathy, willfully aware humor most readily aligns with empathy. Where psychopathy and apathy typically find themselves engaged in laughter that flows from the ridicule or harassment of another (over-dominance) or the passive aggressive patronizing of others (over-nurturing) for some ulterior motive, empathy typically engages in the stable and balanced satirical laughter of perception, comprehension, and the hope to bring about a better existence for all parties involved. The poison of amusement employed in psychopathy and apathy creates only a marketed pseudo-union of exchange which perpetuates the delinquency of  delusional perception and thus, potentiates isolated destabilization for all. On the other hand, or perhaps I should say instead, in the other glass, the wine of humor employed by empaths is a swirling interaction of genuine union and thus, its magical liquor bathes all in the warm glow of bonding synergistic stability.

When the laughter of willfully aware humor is faked, bastardized, exploited, and/or  weaponized it becomes a numbed and zombified sensation of the pseudo-reality of the living dead. It becomes amusement.

When we let go of our egos and acknowledge the imperfect and bemusing flaws, glitches, and defects of our existence and coexistence, we move beyond ourselves and connect our energy much more readily with all of the other creatures and forces within the realm of existence; we connect to the rest of existence not only through pattern recognition, alignment, consistency, and  the refined establishment of perfected order and precision of purpose, but also via the vast pervasive and permeating “dark energy” of confusing, puzzling, and often entertaining chaos; we exist and connect not piecemeal and fragmented, but in isolated union with our own multidimensionality and even more importantly, in the greater communal multidimensional union of higher transcendence.

If we are to truly live, we must love, and if we are to truly love, we must. . .we must,  laugh. May the wine of love and laughter flow through your veins forevermore.

Cribb          2017

 

 

 

The Poison and Wine of Laughter – Part 1 (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 199)

The difference between these two forms of laughter, better stated as amusement or willfully applied humor, might be the most tragically misunderstood and misinterpreted experience in the universe.

The Poison

Amusement has become the expected and the demanded law of the land by the herd. People declare their overt fondness and preference of friends and mates that keep them amused on a perpetual basis while they discount or minimize the need and importance of all of the person’s other qualities and character traits. Internet dating sites clearly display this knee jerk regurgitated “Isn’t it obvious, just like everyone else knows and says, duh?” proclamation; being amusing is the one trait cherished above all others and an absolute must have in any potential suitor interested in a possible relationship or even one simple encounter.

It is also a prime defining trait of psychopaths and the psychopathic manipulation of others. The uncanny ability of a psychopath to intoxicatingly bedazzle their “victims” into a giddy state of apathy and unconcern for reality, consequences, and ramifications, is well documented in the psychological and behavioral literature. Players seducing their prey for the night, slick willy businessmen sealing a deal, con-artists conning, heretical revival preachers enunciating and gesticulating their flock into hyper-emotional overload just prior to the passing of the collection plate, and corrupt politicians charming the masses into blind passionate obedience via the bombast and hyperbole of vitriol against a scapegoat, all exemplify amusement being implemented in its more malignant version.

A more benign form of amusement involves much less overt manipulation and a significantly lower conscious awareness of  intent by the implementer. This manifestation typically expresses itself via more basic, mundane, crude, unintelligent, and a lowest-common-denominator-bonding-experience that thrives and energizes itself on folly, ridicule, debasement, trash talking, or blubbering non-contemplative mesmerization. Fart jokes, burp songs, practical jokes emphasizing cruelty, engaging in trash talk with rival sports fans or about a previous romantic experience, and the subtle influence imposed on specific independent individuals by their larger group amusement state or more accurately, their larger group – pseudo, pretend, and feigned – amusement state, all exemplify this dynamic. Even the use of boring and uninteresting conversation, or numb and fake conversation, with only a subconscious intent to unconditionally ensnare another’s attention, is an example of this woeful benign amusement.

While the benign form of amusement may sometimes be harmless and/or a simple break from reality and contemplative awareness, typically both forms are dastardly and heinous. They both promote delusion via withdrawal and distraction from visceral perception and awareness; they negate reality, serving the same effect on people as that of an addict succumbing to a fix or a hit. But the drug of amusement is tragically and counterproductively swallowed under the satiating pretense of enlightenment and a desired interaction with the best aspects of life. Nothing could be further from the truth. Amusement is the doublespeak-doublethink bastardized child of, the Bizarro antivilian to, and the Dark Sided Sith, of aware and willfully applied  humor. Do not mistake this poison for wine, no matter the sparkle, spectacle, and charmful elegance of the decanter it resides within.

(continued and completed in Part 2)

Cribb          2017

You Have Awoken Them (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 195)

Pretext Note: For those interested in a more detailed understanding of some of the psychological or behavioral  terms I have used in this piece, I have included a few definitions as a postscript. The definitions are limited in greater scope, but suffice to give the reader a general understanding of these terms.

There are those who have always focused on trying to control others, who come up with every excuse in the book to justify their own personal superior authority or the superior authority of the “cause” they have chosen to champion so that they might impose their rule or ideals justifiably on others. The weaker people who are compelled to do this, but lack the drive and skill necessary, turn to association with a larger group, often lead by a powerful psychopath, which harbors the same demented over-dominating compulsion and intent. The “cause” may be the righteousness of the mighty dollar, patriotism, religion, family values, or company loyalty, to name a few. The demented group might be a business/corporation, a church/religion, a socio-economic association, the military, an aspect of the government, a bonded group of those who have attained a higher education, or even a street gang. The forms of the “cause” and the demented group may vary tremendously in appearance and proclaimed purpose, but the root intent is always the same for those, individually or collectively, who possess this pathologic desire within their psyche. The package matters little and is often only a disguise to their acknowledged consciousness, but the telltale sign is when they implement their agenda and it quickly becomes sacred doctrine which may not be questioned or opposed in any manner whatsoever. They judge and the only unforgivable sin is for others to not comply, to not obey, to not submit to their over-dominance. These “controllers” are apaths, destabilized empaths, and lesser psychopaths, who are damaged and broken in many ways, but especially by their insecurity and personal feelings of ineptitude and worthlessness. This is why they are so susceptible to the manipulative charisma of a psychopath and the thought of being warmly enabled and unquestioned in their delusion as a member of a delusional group. Those standing against all of this, against those who are trying to control others, dare I say everyone, through any of the various forms of infectious destabilization, are empaths. The empaths have finally had enough. They are tired of ignorance, apathy, unawareness, hatred, scapegoating, bullying, imperialism, war, the whip of the mighty dollar, and prejudice. The empaths are now rising up once more. You have awoken them with your insanity, and if you are lucky, they might just save the world again. If you are luckier, they might even save you from yourself and your beloved psychopath.

Cribb          2017

The sociopathic-empathic-apathic-triad (SEAT) is a real psychological dynamic of relevance. This isn’t some obscure mysticism or mumbo-jumbo of fiction. For clarity of those unaware, but interested, I provide the brief definitions below.

Apath – Constituting the largest percentage of humanity, probably somewhere around 60% of the total. Apaths tend to lack awareness and empathy. They may be intelligent or not, but regardless they are always highly prone to following the orders or succumbing to the orchestrations of a psychopath (aka sociopath).

Empath – Approximately 36% of the population are empaths. They tend to be independent and highly aware of others feelings and perceptions. They will most often disobey orders or collective behavior (peer pressure) if they feel such behavior is unjust. Empaths are often readily able to see a psychopath for who they truly are. Psychopaths most often target empaths because of this.

Psychopaths/Sociopaths – Perhaps somewhere around 4% of humanity classifies primarily as a psychopath. This does not mean these people are serial killers. A psychopath is defined primarily as lacking empathy, lacking fear, possessing excessive charisma, often being highly intelligent and manipulative, and focusing only on over-dominating the rest of the world. They love to pull puppet strings, turn others against one another, and display how much power they possess.

 

Back to the Future Fascism; 1935 to 2017 (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 163)

He used to surprise persons who were about to shake hands with him by suddenly bending their fingers back till they almost broke. Most people didn’t like it much.

Doremus Jessup could not explain his power of bewitching large audiences. The Senator was vulgar, almost illiterate, a public liar easily detected, and in his “ideas” almost idiotic, while his celebrated piety was that of a traveling salesman for church furniture, and his yet more celebrated humor the sly cynicism of a country store.

Certainly there was nothing exhilarating in the actual words of his speeches, nor anything convincing in his philosophy. His political platforms were only wings of a windmill.

He was an actor of genius. There was no more overwhelming actor on the stage, in motion pictures, nor even in the pulpit. He would whirl arms, bang tables, glare from mad eyes, vomit Biblical wrath  from a gaping mouth; but he would also coo like a nursing mother, beseech like an aching lover, and in between tricks would coldly and almost contemptuously jab his crowds with figures and facts—figures and facts that were inescapable even when, as often happened, they were entirely incorrect.

But below this surface stagecraft was his uncommon natural ability to be authentically excited by and with his audience, and they by and with him. He could dramatize his assertion that he was neither a Nazi nor a Fascist. . .

. . . make you see him veritably defending the Capitol against barbarian hordes, the while he innocently presented as his own warm-hearted Democratic inventions, every anti-libertarian, anti-racist (anti-foreigner) madness of Europe.

Aside from his dramatic glory, Buzz Windrip was a Professional Common Man.

Oh, he was common enough. He had every prejudice and aspiration of every American Common Man. He believed in the desirability and therefore the sanctity of . . .

. . . and the superiority of anyone who possessed a million dollars. He regarded spats, walking sticks, caviar, titles, tea-drinking, poetry not daily syndicated in newspapers, and all foreigners, possibly excepting the British, as degenerate.

But he was the Common Man twenty-times-magnified by his oratory, so that while the other Commoners could understand his every purpose, which was exactly the same as their own, they saw him towering among them, and they raised hands to him in worship.

And it was Buzz’s master stroke that, as warmly as he advocated everyone’s getting rich by just voting to be rich, he denounce all “Fascism” and “Nazism,” so that most of the Republicans who were afraid of Democratic Fascism, and all the Democrats who were afraid of Republican Fascism, were ready to vote for him.

Pushing in among this mob of camp followers who identified political virtue with money for their rent came a flying squad who suffered not from hunger but from congested idealism: Intellectuals and Reformers and even Rugged Individualists, who saw in Windrip, for all his clownish swindlerism, a free vigor which promised a rejuvenation of the crippled and senile capitalistic system.

It Can’t Happen Here

Sinclair Lewis          1935

Empathy and Objectification (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 162)

My definition of reduced empathy is when we cease to treat another person as a person, with their own feelings, and start to treat them as an object. But it could be reasonably asked: Don’t we all do this all of the time to each other? We enjoy a friendship because the person gives us something, we enjoy a sexual relationship because the person’s body is an object, we employ a person because they provide a service we need, and we might enjoy watching someone for their beauty or athletic grace. These all involve aspects of the person as an object.

My reply to this would be that if our empathy is turned on, then all the while we are treating the person as an object, we are simultaneously aware of their feelings. If their emotional state changed, such that they were suddenly upset, we would not just continue with our current activity, but we would check what was wrong and what they might need. If the friendship is based purely on what we gain from the relationship, such that we abandon the person when they are unable to still provide that, that would be not just a shallow relationship, but an unempathetic one. But I should qualify the definition of empathy by adding that the point at which we objectify another person while simultaneously switching off our sensitivity to his emotions is the starting point toward zero degrees of empathy. It is not the end point because as we have seen in the catalog of crimes that people commit, such a state of mind simply makes it possible to behave in more and more hurtful ways.

The Science of Evil

Simon Baron-Cohen          2011

The Financial Reward and Favorable Electability of a Persona that Ills, Endorses, and Enables (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 153)

My first boss out of veterinary school was a man that I looked to for admiration, respect, leadership, skill, and inspiration. I was hungry to begin my career as an associate veterinarian under his tutelage. At the time, I believed the profession to be saturated by exceptional professionals who prioritized empathy, exceptional knowledge and skill, integrity, and honor towards everything and everyone. I believed that the reward of money would follow those attributes naturally, secondarily, and in a balanced truthful fashion. It did not take long to discover how wrong such a premise had been. It was like that point in time when you finally figure out that your parents are not invincible, that they don’t know everything in the world, that they never did, and that in many ways, they are as damaged and confused as you are in your own childhood misperceptions.

I learned quickly how he polished the image of his ineptitude with insincere charming bullshit spewed towards anyone who would listen, towards anyone susceptible to his tactics of entertaining deception. I learned how much he loved to manipulate clients into spending massive amounts of money for unnecessary diagnostics and treatments when he did not care or even have a clue about the reality of the case. I learned how he lied to everyone about everything; his wife, his associate, his peers, his staff, and his clients. His relentless pursuit, his unquestionable priority, was selling without conscience, without validity, almost always absent of a fair exchange over a service or skill of objective need. Being a veterinarian seemed to mean nothing to him beyond serving as a mask of respectable authority and having a license to ill. I honestly don’t remember him ever doing the right thing even once when he knew that he could get away with doing less. I witnessed overt malpractice and unethical manipulation of clients on a number of occasions, but fearing unemployment, the associated possibility of being blacklisted by him in the veterinary community, and quickly realizing that in truth, maybe there were more of his character types in our profession than mine, I was frozen in indecision, and thus controlled by the fear of him for a time. The truth was also apparent to many of the staff, but like myself, most were also caught in the employer fear trap. To be fair, I suppose others liked his tactics and the emboldening sense that they felt from carrying out his passive-aggressive manipulation and revenue depletion of others. There are always those minions who prefer such a destabilized approach to their interactions with others.

This man became a very successful businessman and eventually was elected President of my state Veterinary Medical Association. He deserves those accolades. They should be acknowledged, but what should also be acknowledged is that you should hope he never tried to diagnose or treat your pet for anything. He spoke bullshit and sappy charm to all of his clients and most of them ate it up. It was/is almost like most people really want(ed) the bullshit, the show, the song and dance. They just want to be entertained and have their assumptions and beliefs, no matter how far fetched or off the mark they might be, endorsed and enabled. It makes me sick to even think about the insanity of it all for too long. I still can’t fathom how the system became so broken that it props up people of that nature to become financially successful and to become esteemed as elected leaders who supposedly have everyone’s best interest at heart. Such a system leaves all of the “patients” under the care of an incompetent doctor of malicious intent whether those patients know it or not.

Cribb          January 20, 2017

Dunbar’s Number and the Bonding of Reciprocal Exchange (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 151)

Pretext Cribb Comment: I performed some minor editing and paraphrased a portion of the first paragraph. The credit of content remains attributable to the authors. The principle of Dunbar’s Number and the ramifications of understanding such in relation to behavioral dynamics cannot be understated. This knowledge and observation is prime reasoning to argue against centralization (communism, fascism, democracy, corporatism, and whatever other forms). It explains the most common and probable nature of corruption in the human psyche regarding relationships and interactions. Turning humans and universal empathy into perceived “Its” which deserve only apathy or worst, monstrously destabilizes all of the perceived, as well as all of the perceivers. It clearcuts humanity and the autocorrection of natural law. One wonders if such a behavioral change is not meant to promote war, killing, and carnage amongst people in some attempt to prevent overpopulation and the exponential loss of our true inherent humanity.

Cribb          2017

What allows chain-linked tragedies in “communities” or “groupings” of people is the absence of local (direct) personal shame. Auto-correction or natural correction of personal/individual behavior within a group occurs much more readily in small scale communities where no one can escape public scrutiny and judgement. Such tragedies become inevitable only when the group size exceeds our species’ capacity for keeping track of one another, a point that’s come to be known as Dunbar’s number. In primate communities, size definitely matters.

Noticing the importance of grooming behavior in social primates, British anthropologist Robin Dunbar plotted overall group size against the neocortical development of the brain. Using the correlation, he predicted that humans start losing track of who’s doing what to whom when group size hits about 150 individuals. In Dunbar’s words, “The limit imposed by neocortical processing capacity is simply on the number of individuals with whom a stable inter-personal relationship can be maintained.” Other anthropologists had arrived at the same number by observing that when group sizes grew much beyond that, they tend to split into two smaller groups. Writing several years before Dunbar’s paper was published in 1992, Marvin Harris noted, “With 50 people per band or 150 per village, everybody knew everybody else intimately, so that the bonding of reciprocal exchange could hold people together. People gave with the expectation of taking and took with the expectation of giving.” Recent authors, including Malcolm Gladwell in his best-selling The Tipping Point, have popularized the idea of 150 being a limit to organically functioning groups.

Having evolved in small, intimate bands where everybody knows our name, human beings aren’t very good at dealing with the dubious freedoms conferred by anonymity. When communities grow beyond the point where every individual has at least a passing acquaintance with everyone else, our behavior changes, our choices shift, and our sense of the possible and of the acceptable grows ever more abstract.

The same argument can be made concerning the tragic misunderstanding of human nature that underlies communism: community ownership doesn’t work in large-scale societies where people operate in anonymity. In The Power of Scale, anthropologist John Bodley wrote: “The size of human societies and cultures matters because larger societies will naturally have more concentrated social power. Larger societies will be less democratic than smaller societies, and they will have an unequal distribution of risks and rewards.” Right, because the bigger the society is, the less functional shame becomes. When the Berlin Wall came down, jubilant capitalists announced that the essential flaw of communism had been its failure to account for human nature. Well, yes and no. Marx’s fatal error was his failure to appreciate the importance of context. Human nature functions in one way in the context of intimate, interdependent societies, but set loose in anonymity, we become a different creature. Neither beast is more nor less human.

Sex at Dawn

Ryan and Jethá          2010