A MIND FOREVER VOYAGING THROUGH STRANGE SEAS OF THOUGHT, ALONE


This is my second blog.

My first blog chronicled my experiences over three years caring for my dad as he lived through and finally died from Alzheimer's. That is the book that is for sale.

This second blog kind of chronicles of life, what it is like to start your life over in your late 50's. After caretaking, you are damaged, file bankruptcy, and the world doesn't care what you did. After 8 months of unemployment, you wake each day knowing the world doesn't want you. Finally you do find a job, 5 weeks before homelessness, but doing what you did 30 years ago and getting paid what you did 30 years ago. So this is starting over.



The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

THE FALLACY OF OUT OF THE BOX THINKING

Out of the box thinking.  If you've been in the business world the last 30 years, you've heard of 'out of the box thinking' a million times, it's almost as brain numbing as paradigm shit, er, I mean paradigm shift.

Don't marketing psychological catch phrases have some sort of lifecycle, cause these should be pretty close to their end.

The fact is, there is no such thing as 'out of the box' thinking.

We are born, live our lives, in the box.  We are the box.

Science came along and defined the most popular box today.  It's the box that says only things that are observable and measurable exist.  Actually, Hume is there too, then Kant came along to redefine what Hume said because Kant realized the danger of Hume; that the rules of science are not provable, therefore don't really exist.  Kant was the philosophical equivalent of a public relations executive for Hume and tells us what Hume really meant was not what Hume said.

So science builds this box, only what is observable and measurable is factual, then they fill the box with a bunch of tools like logic and math that will be used to determine what is measurable, observable, and factual.  Except, those rules did not come from the science box, they were brought in with the assumption that these are the rules, but they first existed outside the 'science box' and were brought in while supernatural was excluded from the science box.

Of course, many things we are told by scientists, don't fit the requirements of the box.  Dark matter, for example, has never been observed, only 'measured' mathematically, never photographed, nada.  Much of science cosmology is nothing more than made up, not observable, not measurable, not provable by the very definition of science.

But science is not the only box.  We all live in boxes, those we create and those we share.  Our boxes are how we define reality.  What is true, what is real, what is false, what is fantasy.  The differences between us are not just what is in our box, but the size of the box.

Some people have very small boxes.  Those people are easy to spot, they are very very organized, very into planning, they think that anything bad that occurs in your life is because you failed to plan properly.  I use to know an ex military guy, retired living in the UP of Michigan, and on the old MSN newsgroups he constantly would harp about whatever happened in others lives, it happened because they failed to plan properly.  I genuinely liked the guy, and was internally torn between never wishing bad upon anyone and the desire to see a large boulder land smack dab in the middle of his controlled planned life just so I could say, "gee, you didn't plan for that?".

Everyone has their box.  Shared boxes are those who listen to NPR versus those who listen to Limbaugh.  The KJV only churches who think that the KJV of the Bible is the perfect Bible word for word and will never read or listen to anyone explain the mistakes in the KJV.  Denominations, like religions are boxes.  Politics are boxes.  Companies have boxes and boxes within boxes.  Bean counters see things quite differently than quality engineers than plant workers etc.  They share a box, but the boxes for each slightly overlap each other, but never completely.

I can't count the number of meetings I've sat in over the years where people who spent their lives toeing party lines, dotting i's and crossing t's, are asked to 'think out of the box' and they don't realize they are incapable of 'thinking out of the box'.

What defines creativity is not thinking out of the box, because we can't, but creative people have very large boxes.  The ability to see problems differently, to pull solutions from places no one else would think of, comes from having a very large box  - or, to put another way or use another simile, it's the difference between viewing an issue when you only wear a carpenter belt and your tools are hammers and saws - pound it or cut it - and having a complete tool room where you are skilled, not only in carpentry, but also welding, and other such skills.  The tool room provides more opportunity for possible solutions than the hammer and saw alone.  Creative people have many areas to call on in the large box of their reality, small box people are the carpenter, pound it or saw it just add to it with more wood and nails.  Bureaucrats, when you think about it, are carpenters, they just keep nailing on more and more wood, cutting, adding, nailing until an ugly monstrous mess grows uncontrolled.

How do you get a large box?  You expand the inputs, information, skills, and knowledge.  So, on a Saturday afternoon, you read, you go to youtube, you watch or read a liberal, a libertarian, a classical liberal, a conservative.  You watch or read people who are ostracized in their field of study.  Sutterfield, for example, has been showing for 40 years that the speed of light has not been constant, that the speed of light is varies, that the speed of light in the universe was faster in the past than today, and the implication of that throw all science facts about age and time out the windows and down the toilets.  Today, other scientists are now echoing his findings, though many ignore his 40 years of contribution.

You listen to shows like Coast to Coast for a 'far out' series of shows.  You don't have to agree with guests, just hear what they say, expand your box.  Are there really Black Eyed Kids who try to get you to invite them inside?  I don't know, but if you listen and read about them, should you ever actually run into the situation, you won't be totally freaked out like the person with the little box.

You ask why, you ask why not.  You listen to every argument, and this is very key, sit back and ask yourself, what are the assumptions, the givens, that all this is based on and then you dig into those assumptions to see if they should be granted.  Think of a courtroom, a witness is brought up and they start going thru the all the qualifications of the witness, and the other attorney stands up and says 'yea, we agree with his qualifications'.  Those are like assumptions.

Just like when science and Hume built the box, and just added in logic and math from the outside before closing the box, you should ask and question why logic, why math, why not something else?  That choice of science, just logic and math, predetermines every conclusion it will ever make.

Why do we assume, for example, just because some guy or gal spent 20 years in college and have a couple of PhD's that they really know what they are talking about?  Or what they say is a fact, just because they prolonged their adolescence into their 30's?  And let's face it, anyone who ever went to college knows many of those PhD professors were kind of nuts.

The funny thing, is science uses their superiority of PhD's all the time, yet defending any position based upon the person's school or PhD, is a logical fallacy - the same logic they use in their box, they constantly disobey - see Richard Dawkins debate.

Always question the assumptions, listen and read books outside your comfort zone.  Are you a Bible thumping Baptist?  Read Bart Erhman and figure out where he is wrong.  Read Michael Heiser to see what someone who can read the ancient Hebrew says it says - expand.  Listen to shows like Coast to Coast and expand the box.  But apply those same rules to the guests.

Small boxes, marching in lockstep - you can never be creative.  You also run a danger when your worldview is a small box, it's very easy to use successive approximations to move people in small boxes where you want them to go, it's how otherwise normal people will go along with evil things you and frankly they, never thought they would - like Lutherans in 1930's Germany - people with very big boxes are much harder to move, because they can see where things are going.  People with big boxes are dangerous to the bureaucracy, dangerous to the government, dangerous to the corporations.

Expand your box.

Gazing past the planets
Looking for total view
I've been laying here for hours
You gotta make the journey out and in

Wonders of a lifetime
Right there before your eyes
Searching with this life of ours
You gotta make the journey out and in
Out and in, out and in

Will you think it's a joke
That's all right
Do what you want to do
I've said my peace
And I'll leave it all up to you


Moody Blues

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