This is where everything begins.
I begin here; all of my actions, stem from this philosophy. Why do I act? How do I act? The answers lie somewhere on this website.
This post is the main body. It’ll lead you to other posts. Go on as you wish. Follow what appeals to you.
Table of Contents
– 1.1 Absolutes
– 1.2 Essential Knowledge
2. Reality & Self
– 2.1 This Reality
– 2.2 The Self
3. Units of Happiness
– 3.1 Contentment
– 3.2 Intrigue
– 4.1 Freedom
– 4.2 Independence
– 4.3 Ownership
5. Morality & Ethics
– 5.1 Morality (Individual)
– 5.2 Ethics (Society)
– 5.3 In Practice
– 5.4 Social Systems
6. Extra: Rationality
– 6.1 Rationality
– 6.2 Reasoning
– 6.3 Meta-Reasoning
Before You Read
The obvious: I wrote them for myself. I wrote them simply & concisely & reader-friendly, for myself.
But, for your learning:
- The point is to challenge, then understand.
- The point is to read, forget, and rediscover.
At some point, you’ll be ready…and start asking the questions.
Then the answers will come…
…from the heart…
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*You probably want to jump over here.
– 0.1.1 “Philosophy”
– 0.1.2 Subjects
– 0.1.3 Philosophy of Life
– 0.1.4 How It Came About
– 0.1.5 What It Brought
– 0.1.6 Did I Copy This Person?
– 0.1.7 More On
To most people, philosophy is “a subject so complex and confusing, that there are no actual answers nor applications in the real world.”1It’s somewhat true; philosophy hasn’t, indeed, yet helped anyone build their rocket ship. At least, seemingly.
I used to dislike philosophy. In my eyes, philosophers seemed unfit, unhappy, broke, envious, resentful, like most people…the subject looked like a whole bunch of lies.2E.g. People who study ethics don’t act more ethically.
And I now realize that (good) philosophy “does” matter.3And that, I’m only interested in those that do matter. The others are boring, personally.Truths exist in philosophy; there are answers to the important questions in life.
E.g. “What’s the meaning of life?”
Is there a good answer? Yes. Is it actionable? Yes. Does it enslave you? No.
And I ask you: Without knowing the meaning of life, aren’t you wasting your precious time? How do you know?
They’re all influence-less…I think.4I’ve had inspirations here and there, but at the end of the day, I came up with the logic.Except, my ‘theory of knowledge’ mostly comes from David Deutsch.5This might include Karl Popper.
(All other subjects don’t matter to me, except ‘logic’, which I’m studying.6Logic is more mathematical than philosophical. It’s not individual progress. I won’t find anything new (like math) on my own.)
I like to think of this philosophy as Newtonian physics7except for the academic significance (big time! LOL)—clear, but flawed, but not self-contradictory, and with fair accuracy & universality.
0.1.3 Philosophy of Life
The philosophy of life isn’t “really” philosophy…but it’s truth.
All the philosophy leads to the philosophy of life. That’s what this is about (for me).
0.1.4 How It Came About
I grew up miserable; I was always unhappy, and I was always anxious.
And I didn’t want that. I mean, would I have to keep being miserable for the rest of my life? That sucks! I was getting tired of it.
My mind wondered about it for quite a while. I read stuff on the internet, watched stuff on YouTube…over time, I found truths here and there, and recently, they’ve all come together. Not chronologically, nor backwards.8 I still have no idea how.
I didn’t realize that they were philosophical, for a long time. For one, I’ve never read a single philosophy book!9When I first wrote this, it was true. Then I read some…none of them made a difference. Except, the beginning of infinity.
0.1.5 What It Brought
- I’ve been dealing with anxiety(doubt) every night. Not anymore.
- I was resentful about my circumstances. Not anymore.
- I had severe focusing issues.10I literally couldn’t read a single page of a book without wandering off.It’s a lot better now.
- I now have clarity in life.
- I don’t get lonely anymore.
- I got rid of emotional volatility.11Although, I was naturally calm. But, I’m definitely more relaxed.
0.1.6 “Did I Copy This Person?”
Name any person that comes to your mind. Did I copy them? Yes. Even if I don’t know them, or any of their concepts, I copied their works.
I sincerely believe that none of this is original. The ideas just came to me, and these posts just organized them.
Don’t give me any credit.
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1.1.1 Information Tree
- ‘Sensory inputs’: Information communicated by the body.
- ‘Thoughts’: Information created by the mind.
- ‘Ideas’: Concepts from the mind; Imaginations.14Not interpreting colours as books, but imagining colours from the concept of books.
- ‘Explanations’: to concepts (& the interactions between concepts).
- ‘Beliefs‘: (Currently) unfalsifiable explanations.
- (Intellectual) ‘Knowledge’: Falsifiable explanations.
- ‘Trivia’: Unimportant knowledge.
- 2 things are absolute: ‘reason’15the way we (deductively) connect axioms16including its (logical) tools: “IF, AND, THEN, OR, TRUE/FALSE, EXIST/NOT, …”& ‘raw information'(experience).17Sensory inputs & Thoughts
- They’re foundational; all (essential) concepts/knowledge stem from the ‘absolutes’.
- They’re “absolute” because I can’t think otherwise20I can’t explain the means (+ tools) using the means—it would be circular reasoning (<- uses the means too)21E.g. How can I explain “if”?; anything beyond the ‘absolutes’ is beyond the concept of “absolute” itself.22Perhaps some things are beyond absolute (under different laws of physics). But then, it’s irrelevant to this reality.
- ∴ ‘Absolutes’ aren’t falsifiable/provable.23While necessary in all knowledge.24‘Falsifications’ & ‘proofs’ are “from” the absolutes. Falsifying/proving absolutes would be circular reasoning (which is false).
1.1.3 Do I Exist?
- Consciousness25the experience of raw informationabsolutely exists.
- Experience, per se, isn’t fallible; An illusion(“false” perception) is, still, experience.26E.g. If I look at a carrot and see a banana, I’m still “seeing”. An experience being incorrect doesn’t disprove the existence of that experience.
- ‘I’, the soul27the point of perception(experience)28I don’t mean “soul” in a religious sense; I don’t even know what it would mean., am consciousness; Consciousness is ‘I’.
- Experience is all there is;29The perception of reality is experience; the perception of self is experience.There’s no ‘I’, separate from experience.
- ‘I’ is the distinction from ‘other’; the boundary of experience.
- Consciousness absolutely exists;
- I am Consciousness;
- I absolutely exist.
1.2 Essential Knowledge
- All knowledge is fallible; no knowledge is absolute.
1.2.2 Essential Axioms
- All knowledge depends on the non-absolute axioms:
- Mathematical Axioms
- Cause & Effect: That, A. The laws of reality exist.32Though all knowledge is conjectural(guessing).AND, B. They’re causal.33Though causality could just be an illusion.
- Induction: That, A. The laws of reality stay consistent.34Though the laws could change tomorrow for an “external” reason. (Like rewriting scripts in a program.)AND, B. Reality itself continues to exist.35Though it could just end tomorrow for an “external” reason.36External means “beyond this reality.”
- Objectivity: That A. The sensory inputs are accurate.37Or that it may be “accurate enough” with peers/machines.38Though I could just be hallucinating like humans often do.AND, B. The interpretations of sensory inputs are consistent.39Though I could be interpreting the same colours as “pencil” not “books”.
- Knowledge creation isn’t possible without these axioms.
1.2.3 Facets of Reality
- Essentially, there are 2 facets of reality:
- ‘The physical’ is made up of A. Elements,
1.2.4 The Narrative & The Physical
- They coexist & correspond to each other, in different planes; neither comes first:
- ‘The narrative’ is an abstraction of the ‘physical’; it’s created/corrected upon ‘the physical’.
- However, ‘the physical’ (& its physics) isn’t absolute; its existence depends on ‘the narrative’.
- ‘The narrative’ is tied to the experience, which is absolutely real.
- The experience(absolute) is in the form of ‘the narrative’, based on ‘the physical'(not-absolute),
- ‘The narrative’ and ‘the physical’ are co-dependent, AND
- Like ‘the physical’, ‘the narrative’ is not-absolute, AND
- Both are necessary for reality to essentially exist.40Absolute truths lead to nothing on their own; reality doesn’t exist without ‘the narrative/physical’. Without ‘the physical’, reality doesn’t exist in the first place. Without ‘the narrative’, there’s no experience of reality, which is no different than reality not existing.
1.2.5 The Paradox, Simply:
- The ‘self’ is made up of the physical reality, AND,
- The physical reality can be perceived and understood only through the ‘self’.41Perceptions & explanations are narrative concepts.
- ∴ ‘The physical’ and ‘the narrative’ coexist.42It’s a circular dependence.
1.2.6 Knowledge Spectrum
- Knowledge lies on a spectrum (physical — narrative).
- Reduction goes left; Abstraction goes right.
- Through abstractions, it’s possible to go beyond the narrative43direct observations—they’re often called wisdom (or philosophy
1.2.7 Reduction vs. Abstraction
- The more reductive(=physical) a piece of knowledge is, the more essential it tends to be.
1.2.8 Ship of Theseus
- The problem comes from merging multiple levels of abstractions.
- (Purely) Narratively,44looking at the whole,the ship remains “Theseus’s ship”.
- In reduction,45looking at the parts,the ship doesn’t stay the same.46(Purely) Physically, the ship doesn’t even exist.
2. Reality Itself
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2.1 This Reality
– 2.1.1 What is This Reality?
– 2.1.2 This-Layer Reality
– 2.1.3 Sidenote: God
– 2.1.4 How “Real” Is This Reality?
– 2.1.5 What is Life?
– 2.1.6 What is The Meaning of Life?
– 2.1.7 What is The Purpose of Life?
– 2.1.8 More On
2.1 This Reality
2.1.1 What is This Reality?
- This is a reality question; It can’t have an absolute answer; It has to be answered with essential axioms—causality/objectivity.47Not necessarily objectivity.48All explanations of how this reality is in the form of cause & effect.
- This is the base-layer reality, OR the indefinite-th layer reality.
2.1.2 This-Layer Reality
- In all cases, this is the best layer, because I’m experiencing it.49I wouldn’t put myself into this reality(simulation) if it’s worse than the lower layer reality.
- I’m the main character, because my experience(existence) precedes reality.
2.1.3 Sidenote: God
- Absolutely, God is that which is beyond the absolute.
- Essentially, God is the entity that created this-layer reality.
2.1.4 How “Real” is This Reality?
- Essentially: From God’s (extrinsic) POV, it’s as real as a “bunch of lines of code”.
- From within (this reality), it’s totally real.50It’s all there is.51In a simulation, the point is to pretend that this reality is “real”. Otherwise, I’d know.
- Regardless, the experience of this reality is absolutely real.
2.1.5 What is Life?
- Absolutely, all experiences happen over a span of time.52“Swinging a stick” happens across a certain time frame.The past & present blend into an experience.
- Essentially, every explanation of real events uses ’cause & effect’; explanations are storylines(narratives).
- Physically, the cause is the past.53It’s a “how” question.
- Narratively, the cause is the past ‘and’ the future(motives).54It’s a “how & why” question.
- ∴ Life isn’t just the moment; Life is a story; Life is a set of experiences with a storyline.55I can’t reduce life down to the moment, because it then becomes inexplicable.
2.1.6 What is The Meaning of Life?
- This is a narrative question.
2.1.7 What is The Purpose of Life?
- It’s a “why” question; It’s an infinite regress, until the answer is for its own sake.
- The answer has to be about the experience.
2.1.8 More On
- If there’s pleasure/fulfillment, life is good enough; I don’t need an extrinsic answer.56Why do I watch a movie?57It’s only when the experience is unsatisfactory do I ask “why do I live…”
- More on
2.2 The Self
2.2.1 My “Self”
- The ‘self’ is the part of reality that connects ‘reality’ & ‘soul’.
- The ‘conscious’ is the reality-entity of ‘I’.58It’s the only un-removable part of ‘I’.
- It’s the part of the ‘self’ that’s connected to the soul(‘I’).
- The ‘unconscious’ is the group of processing units performing most work.
- (With multiple units) It can multitask, as a whole.
- It functions automatically (without awareness), according to its programming.
- The ‘unconscious’, as a whole, is always active.
- It has a strong(fast) processing power.
- The ‘mind’ is the generator of thoughts.
- Mostly, it uses the unconscious’ processing power to generate ideas.59Ideas are partially-randomized connections of information(stored information).
- It also creates emotional feelings, based on the unconscious’ analysis of information60interactions between concepts.
- It’s in charge of creating storylines.
- The ‘body’ is the part of the ‘self’ that’s connected to reality.
- The (un)conscious sends orders to the ‘body’; the ‘body’ returns feedback(sensory inputs -> feelings).
- Thoughts/Emotions are mechanisms that the (un)conscious uses to express itself.
- Those expressions lead to further actions, and are sent through the consciousness (paired with the sensory inputs).
2.2.7 Is there Free Will?
- Physically? No.61Physics is deterministic.62There’s no ‘self’ in the first place.
- Narratively? Yes.63I experience the making decision.64Also, reality is largely unpredictable.
2.2.8 Free Will
- Awareness is ‘free will’, narratively.
- The conscious can be aware; it can act in ‘free will’; it’s autonomous. The unconscious is the opposite.
- Only the conscious has ‘free will’; the ‘self’ without the conscious has no ‘free will’.65“I” have ‘free will’. My ‘self’ does not.
- Complete Free Will
2.2.9 Movie or Game
- Physically, life is neither.
- Narratively(extrinsically), life is a game.66With free will.However:
- The unconscious is in charge most of the time.67As it’s more powerful.
- The conscious has the capacity to reprogram the unconscious, and change the ‘self’ & its circumstances.
- ∴ Life is a movie where I’m the director.68The director who creates the set and guides the actor.
- Reality is the setting, my ‘self’ is the main character, and I’m the audience.
- Life is a movie
2.2.10 More On
- The ability to have complete control of the movie; that’s ownership.
- Any entity that doesn’t direct its movie is an NPC; NPC has no autonomy.69NPCs live completely reactive, predictable lives.
- The major separator between humans and animals is the capacity for free will, and the potential for ownership.
3. Units of Happiness
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– 3.1.1 Feeling
– 3.1.2 Peace
– 3.1.3 Delight & Suffering
– 3.1.4 Joy
– 3.1.5 Meaning
– 3.1.6 Contentment
– 3.1.7 Big Misery
– 3.1.8 Primers
- ‘Feeling’ is buying into the pure sensory input and/or the narrative.
- ‘Feeling’ is both physical & emotional.70They’re both sensory experiences.
- Overall ‘feeling’ is on a pain-pleasure spectrum (- to +)
- ‘Peace’ is:
- A. When the ‘feeling’ is at 0, (no +, no -).71The default state is 0(not negative)
- B. When there are little fluctuations(conflicts) in feeling.72In frequency & magnitude.
- On Peace
3.1.3 Delight & Suffering
- They are emotional feelings.
- The mind creates them using stories of the “(un)fulfillment of desires”.73A physical pain can be interpreted into happiness or suffering.
- This is another form of feeling.
- ‘Joy’ is intrigue; the beauty of the moment.
- It’s an artistic interpretation of information.74It’s tied to the “creative” part of ‘meaning’. (Not necessarily)
- ‘Meaning’ is buying into the stories of life; something matters.
- ‘Meaningful’ events lead to ‘meaningful’ life; meaning in life is meaning of life.
- Significant events that happen to/for which that matter, are ‘meaningful’.75Significant means it was creative/consequential.
- The overall sense of ‘meaning’ is on a ‘meaningless’–‘meaningful’ spectrum (0 to +).76‘Meaningful’ means: A. Something matters a lot, and B. Much significant things happen to that something.
- ‘Contentment’ is life satisfaction.
- Feeling + Meaning = Contentment77Not a literal math equation.
- Reality – Expectation = Perceived Contentment
- The spectrum of ‘perceived contentment’ is ‘misery’–‘happiness’ (- to +).
- Law of Diminishing Marginal Utility applies.78Repeated exposure “dulls” the misery/happiness.
- Loss Aversion applies.79Losing $10 gives more ‘misery’ than gaining $10 gives ‘happiness’.
3.1.7 Big Misery
- When contentment is (-), there’s less to live than to die.
- Depression is when life satisfaction is at its lowest.
- A. Meaninglessness + a lot of pain, OR
- B. Absurd level of pain (physical)
- ‘Primers’ are feeling-setups for an event.80A ‘primer’ shifts the baseline emotional state towards a certain emotion.
- I have to be ‘primed’ for a feeling to experience it fully.
- ‘Primers’ are sensory inputs(music, scenery, etc.) AND/OR narratives(imagined deviations from expectations).
- Anxiety/Excitement is a sign of being narratively ‘primed’.81Primed by the concepts.
- Fear/Confidence exists when there’s a perceived consequence(loss/gain).
- Recap: Life is essentially about the ‘intrigue’, not ‘peace’.
- Peace is nothing-ness;
3.2.2 What’s intriguing?
- The less probable it seems;
- The bigger contrast there is;
- The more creative it is;82If anything will always be interesting, it’s creativity(problem-solving). “Something new” will always be interesting. If not, nothing else will.
- The more unique the journey is;
- The more real it feels;
- The more romantic it is.
3.2.3 2 Parts of Intrigue
- The significance of the event (in the storyline);
- The beauty of the experience.
3.2.4 In search of intrigue (opinion)
- A way to maximize (emotional) contrast is to maximize the suffering.
- However, it comes at the expense of happiness.
- Also, it’s unnecessary to create suffering, as the default human state is misery.
- Of all moments of misery, only 1 (the lowest) period of misery is relevant in the moment of happiness, in a given story.
- It’s preferable to maximize other variables.
3.2.5 In search of intrigue (opinion)
- I could try to make life more romantic by creating more romantic events.
- However, intentional romantic events aren’t as real; they’re acted out.
- Also, it shifts the focus away from the results(desires), interfering with the actual outcome.
- Romantic events happen by themselves in the path of true-desires, just unpredictably.
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– 4.1.1 Freedom
– 4.1.2 More On
– 4.1.3 Freedom of Mind
– 4.1.4 Freedom of Body
– 4.1.5 Financial Freedom
– 4.1.6 Social Freedom
– 4.2.1 Unconscious Programming
– 4.2.2 General Deprogramming
– 4.2.3 Equivalence
– 4.2.4 Self-Image
– 4.2.5 Attachment
– 4.2.6 Independence
– 4.2.7 More On
– 4.2.8 Escape
– 4.2.9 Deconditioning
– 4.2.10 Sacrifice
– 4.2.11 True-Self
– 4.2.12 Side note
4.1.1 Freedom: Where I “Go”
- ‘Freedom’ is freedom from restraints.
- ‘Freedom’ is the prerequisite to boundless exploration.83Restraints of the mind/body/materials/people hold me back from exploring freely.
- With ‘freedom’, my actions are externally autonomous.
- Without ‘freedom’, I might have creative places to go to but I can’t actually go anywhere.
4.1.2 More On
- A side effect of freedom is peace, as the return to baseline (level of feelings).84By getting rid of things to suffer from.
- Freedom means I “don’t have to care”.
- Another side effect of freedom is energy.85By not leaking them in unnecessary ways.
4.1.3 Freedom of Mind
- It’s about resolving traumas (of the past/future).
- Uncontrollable thoughts.
- (Not having pain thinking about anything)
- (And also, getting off the mind, and being in the present)
- Mind restraints & freedom
4.1.4 Freedom of Body
- It’s about fixing physical problems.
- (Not having pain moving the body)
- Body restraints & freedom
4.1.5 Financial Freedom
- It’s about developing a 0-maintenance cost.
- (Not having to worry about money)
- Financial restraints & freedom
4.1.6 Social Freedom
- (Not having/wanting to depend on anyone)
- Social restraints & freedom
4.2.1 Unconscious Programming
- The unconscious functions (automatically) according to its ‘programming'(habits).
- As my unconscious is the main actor, the way it is ‘programmed’ determines how I think & act.
- Throughout my life, my unconscious has been ‘programmed’, by various motives.86Often in ways I don’t even realize.
- It has to be ‘deprogrammed’, before ‘reprogramming’ it in the way I want.
- Talent + Programming → Outcome
4.2.2 General Deprogramming
- Body movements87e.g. walking form, hand gestures, speaking tone, blinking frequency, etc.are habits—they can be deprogrammed.88Or reprogrammed.
- Simple emotional responses89to stubbing toes, broken glasses, strangled earphones, etc.are habits—they can be deprogrammed.90Or reprogrammed.
- Addiction is (primarily) a habit—it can be deprogrammed.91Or reprogrammed.
- Every action that isn’t conscious is a matter of simple habits.92If I can’t change my habits, I don’t have independence(ownership).
- Unless it: A. Is physical, OR B. Requires escape/deconditioning
- The unconscious programming is in accordance with my ‘self-image’; they always try to match each other.
- For every experience93interaction with reality, if there are mismatches: A. The program changes to fit the ‘self-image’, AND/OR B. The’ self-image’ changes to fit the programming.
- ‘Equivalence’ doesn’t happen if either part doesn’t exist: A. Some of my habits have nothing to do with my ‘self-image’. OR, B. Some pieces of ‘self-image’ have no corresponding actions/feedback.
- All major “habits”(behaviours) are connected to the ‘self-image’.
- It’s the collection of pieces that make me who I “think” I am:
- (My) Characteristics94body, possessions, associations, knowledge, experiences, etc.+ What matters (to me)
- ‘Attachments’ are the pieces of ‘self-image’ that I feel the need to protect (being closely tied to me).
- They resist change.95Pieces need to be removed/added to modify the self-image; attachments refuse to be removed.
- They cause emotional volatility/vulnerability.96By having more things to protect & be happy/sad about.
- However, ‘attachments’ are necessary to create actions.97E.g. With no strong desire, why should I act?
- On Attachments
4.2.6 Independence: “Where” I Go
- ‘Independence’ is:
- Independence from influences, by
- Deprogramming the unconscious, by
- Modifying the self-image, by
- Disattaching from the (harmful, strong) attachments.
- Modifying The Self
- It’s reducing the self-image down to necessary.
- With ‘independence’, my actions are internally autonomous; ‘Independence’ is free will.
- Without ‘independence’, I could go anywhere but wherever I end up going won’t be creative.
4.2.7 More On
- A side effect of independence is peace, as the reduction in fluctuations.98By getting rid of things to react to.
- Another side effect of independence is an unbiased, no-filter view of reality.99By removing distortions of attachments.
- ‘Escape’ is the escape from the ‘ego’.
- The ‘ego’ is an internal demon that craves status.100It’s the product of a strong sense of self.
- A lot of attachments stem from the ‘ego’.
- ‘Deconditioning’ is deconditioning from society’s conditioning.
- A lot of attachments are ‘conditioned’ by the society101other people, by: A. Me subconsciously adopting others’ attachments, AND/OR B. Others deliberately ‘conditioning’ me into attachments.
- The main theme of these attachments: goodness.
- ‘Deconditioning’ is about rejecting social conditioning.
- On Conditioning
- It’s a combination of time spent & pain(suffering).
- A lot of attachments come from ‘sacrifices’.
- They are sunk costs.
- Once, I remove all the attachments, particularly from the 3 sources, I’m left with my ‘true-self’.
- Pieces of my ‘true-self’ are the parts of me that:
- A. I can’t change, AND/OR
- B. Are unique to me.
- They are: natural interests & talents & desires.
- Attachments are explainable, and once understood, naturally go away.
- Then, I’m down to the unexplainable: the pieces of my ‘true-self’.
4.2.12 On a side note
- Reprogramming the self-image leads to a new self; it’s creating a new character that I will direct in making a new story(chapter).
- I don’t want to create a movie with too many themes.
- I don’t want to create a character with too many unnecessary details.
4.3.1 Ownership: “Where I Go”
- ‘Ownership’ is the complete ownership of the self.
- (The movements of the body, thoughts of the mind, emotions of the heart, pathway of life, etc.)
- ‘Ownership’ is Complete Free Will
- ‘Ownership’ is attained via freedom & independence.
4.3.2 Potential, Peace, and Journey
- Once I completely ‘own’ myself, I have access to my full potential.102There are no limitations left within.
- Once I completely ‘own’ myself, I have peace.103Nothing involuntarily affects my feelings.
- With ‘ownership’104peace & potential, every experience105even the negativeis voluntary and enjoyable.106In the macro, under the umbrella of a story.
- ‘Self-awareness’ is an absolute necessity; ownership is impossible without ‘self-awareness’.107Understanding opens the path towards ownership.
- The deeper the ‘self-awareness’, the more robust it is.
- It’s a product of self-examination.
- ‘Clarity’ is a byproduct of self-awareness.
- I know who I am;109What I want, What I have, etc. I know what I’m doing; I know why; I know how.
- It directly leads to potential & peace by:
- Having an ultra-clear, concentrated desire (knowing what I want), AND
- Having awareness of the present (knowing what I’m doing).
- Confusion, on the other hand, leads to paralysis/anxiety.
4.4.5 Towards Ownership
- All pillars of ownership110financial freedom, escape, etc.are connected to each other; improving one leads to another; the concepts overlap.
5. Morality & Ethics
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5.1 Morality (Individual)
– 5.1.1 Good or Bad
– 5.1.2 What Morality is About
– 5.1.3 Who Matters
– 5.1.4 Association
– 5.1.5 Sympathy
– 5.1.6 Selfishness
– 5.1.7 Levels of Experience
– 5.1.8 Ultimate Desires
– 5.1.9 Prioritized Entities
5.3 In Practice
– 5.3.1 What’s Good, Literally?
– 5.3.2 On a Deeper Level
– 5.3.3 Morality Comes First
– 5.3.4 Justice
– 5.3.5 Consequentialism
– 5.3.6 Deontology
– 5.3.7 Virtue
– 5.3.8 Trolley Problem
5.1 Morality (Individual)
5.1.1 Good or Bad
- Good/Bad ≈ Desirable/Undesirable
- Something is as good as it fulfills desires.
- ∴ Morality is essentially a personal preference.
5.1.2 What Morality is About
- Morality isn’t only about me; it’s about the interactions between entities.111Morality doesn’t exist with 1 entity.
- Specifically, it’s about fulfilling the desires of those that matter.
5.1.3 Who Matters
- Absolutely: No entity, other than me, matters.112First, the nature of their experiences is unclear.113Second, their existence is unclear.114Third, there’s no absolute reason anyway; it’s a narrative concept.
- Essentially, “who matters” is a preference; all standards of selection are arbitrary.
- One major (historical) standard is association.115Family, friends, colleagues, etc.
- The tighter the association, the more they matter.
- It’s tightly linked to meaning116goals, purposes.
- One major standard is sympathy.
- Sympathy is a projection of experience.
- Morality is ultimately selfish; selfish acts are moral.
- Acting for the associated is acting for myself.117Since I regard them as the extension of myself.
- Acting in sympathy is acting for myself.118Because I’m trying to feel good.
5.1.7 Levels of Experience
- There are distinct ‘levels of experience'(consciousness):
- Unconscious (No experience)
- No Self(-Awareness)
- No Free Will (Autonomy)
- Free Will
- The levels are arbitrary; some have the potential to be at the next level.
- However, it’s sensical (narratively) because it makes distinctions in the desires & who matters.
5.1.8 Ultimate(ly Preferable) Desires
- Desires come from what matters.
- Nothing ‘absolutely’ matters; nothing “must” matter. But things do matter.
- What does matter depends on the ‘level of experience’:
- Unconscious → Nothing matters.
- Conscious → Pleasure matters.
- Conscious & Self → Peace(Pleasure) & Purpose matters.
- Conscious & Self & Free-Will → Intrigue(Purpose) matters.
- Fulfilling that which matters is the ultimate good, and that depends on the ‘level of experience’ of an entity.
5.1.9 Prioritized Entities
- Reality is a simulation; it (most certainly) exists for entertainment. HENCE,
- ↑ Level(of consciousness)119I’d rather experience being a human than a fly (because the experience is “fuller”) = ↑ Likelihood of a soul (experiencing the entity)120The experience of being an ant (probably) exists. However, there (probably) isn’t a ‘soul’ experiencing it.AND,
- In the case where someone “voluntarily” experiences the lower-level entity, “doing good” destroys the intended experience.121Part of “the deer experience” is being chased by the predators. THEREFORE,
- I have a strong justification to prefer optimizing for the highest-level entities: fellow humans.
5.2 Ethics (Society)
- Society is a group of people formed around a particular concept(s): lineage/geography/idea/etc.
- Society ⇋ Association122Society leads to association, association leads to society.
- Societies create synergetic benefits by scaling: markets/protection/etc.
- There are many societies.
- Society is essentially collectivist(groupist).123It’s found upon associations: attachments: people being part of each others’ identities.
- For a society, at its largest scale124including every entity, at the most general level: The lowest common denominator for desire is pleasure.
- ∴ Maximizing pleasure, as a whole…is the basic answer.
- However, most humans:
- A. Don’t have free will. AND,
- B. Have the potential for the “higher level of experience”.
- ∴ The ultimate good for a person is: A. Ownership, then B. Intrigue.
- ∴ Society’s ultimate ideal is freedom (for as many as possible); excluding independence.125It’s inherently impossible(perhaps undesirable) for a society to bring independence to its members.
- Honor is the society’s reward for ethical acts:
- Although, it’s based on the “perception” of ethical acts.127Even if I did something ethical, if the public perceives the act as unethical, I get no honor.
- Honor makes me socially acceptable.128It’s synonymous with “likability”.
- The better I am to society, the better society is to me.
- What matters most to a society is the uniting concept (not the individuals).
- ∵ Societies form around ideas.
- Without the concept, it falls apart.
- ∴ In order to maintain itself, a society must cast out the heretics131because they weaken association.
- Heresies are socially unacceptable.
5.2.6 The Value of Ethics
- Unlike morality132which is a direct preference, ethics indirectly affect me.133My actions help others, others’ actions help me.
- The more ethical society is the better society to live in.
5.3 In Practice
5.3.1 What’s Good, Literally
- Morality/ethics is embedded in daily life; it’s not necessarily about life & death.
- On a surface level, whatever you desire is morally good.134Beauty is a moral good, nice tasting food is a moral good, annoying music is a moral bad, etc.135Harm is whatever you don’t want, and is immoral (to you).
- On a surface level, whatever’s good for society(≈ other people) is ethically good.
5.3.2 On a Deeper Level
- What’s truly good: fulfilling true-desires (depending on the ‘level of experience’).
5.3.3 Morality Comes First
- Fundamentally, I don’t live for society.136The individual is only part of society so long as it benefits himself.
- Justice is the “fairness” between morality & ethics.137Justice is justification.
- It’s collective morality.
- It’s what maximizes the moral/ethical good.138Both, if not, one. If one, with the least sacrifice of the other.
- Injustice creates conflict.
- At the end of the day, all that matters is the outcome(=experience).
- Good/bad is a judgement of the outcome, not the process.139E.g. “Eating cake” isn’t (un)desirable; the “experience(mostly taste) of eating cake” is.140E.g. “Killing” isn’t (un)desirable; the “loss of life(potential good)” is.
- No ‘action’ is good/bad, regardless of the outcome.141If an action produced good results, it was good.
- Deontology is a set of arbitrary standards used as substitutes for judgement.142Hence, the standards of which actions are good/bad has changed.
- Virtue is a pattern of behaviours that benefit others.143Hence, it’s praised socially.
- It’s an extension of deontology.144Virtuous acts are regarded as good, although they aren’t outcomes.
- Sympathy(caring about others) is particularly celebrated.
5.3.8 Solution to the Trolley Problem
- If the 1 person matters to me, pull the lever;
- If not, don’t pull the lever;
- If 1 is human, and 5 are chickens, pull the lever;
- If the chickens matter to me, don’t pull the lever;
- If 1 is conscious, and 5 are unconscious (that can’t recover), pull the lever.
5.4 Social Systems
- Law is a set of social contracts that (seek to) actualize justice.
- It’s based on the mutual agreement across all members of the society: “I acknowledge (what matters to) you.”
- It’s an extension of deontology, via coercion; law forces a (minimum) level of ethics145contributionupon members (of the society).146Law is an authority people can rely on, without having to constantly figure out what is (not) ethical.
- Since deontology is arbitrary, laws are constantly modified.
- Punishments are future-oriented acts of justice.147On their own, they’re unethical; they cause suffering.
- They exist to minimize unethical acts by creating moral consequences for them.
5.4.3 The Fundamental Obligation
- If I’m to participate in a society, I’m obligated to be at least a net-neutral (to the society).148In other words, give more than take.
- If the average member takes (more than gives), the system falls apart.149Society loses its purpose.
- It’s vital for a society to remove unethical entities.
- Responsibility is an extension of the fundamental obligation.
- Responsibility is the fundamental principle of reciprocation: “owning up to the consequences.”
5.4.5 Rights (& Welfare)
- ‘Rights’ are agreements: Every member of the society(group) “deserves” ‘x’, given ‘y’.
- Welfare(= Human Rights): Every member deserves ‘x’ just by being part of the society.150On the flip side, it means: Every member must “contribute” ‘z’.
- In a democratic system, ‘x’ is determined by consensus.
5.4.6 Determining Justice
- Larger society → More general(unspecific) unifying concept → Weaker association with other members of the society; I care less → Morality aligns less with ethics → Looser society
- “I am, at the Fed level, libertarian; at the state level, Republican; at the local level, Democrat; and at the family and friends level, a socialist.”151Not affiliated
- Thought: Looser societies require more force to keep themselves together.152Like a powerful concept.
- ∴ They don’t function well with collectivist approaches153also requiring more force.
*Click to fold
– 6.1.1 What’s Rationality?
– 6.1.2 Circumstance Awareness
– 6.1.3 Reasoning Methods
– 6.1.4 Abstractions
– 6.1.5 Contexts
– 6.1.6 Results
– 6.1.7 Knowledge of Irrationality
– 6.1.8 Essential Knowledge
– 6.1.9 Theory of Knowledge
– 6.1.10 Biases & Heuristics
– 6.2.1 Intuition
– 6.2.2 Logic
– 6.2.3 Intuition vs. Logic
– 6.2.4 Not Enough Logic
– 6.2.5 Intuition + Logic
– 6.2.6 Intuitive Judgements
6.1.1 What’s Rationality?
- Rationality is an approach to the processes/decisions that bring results.
- In a given condition & desired outcome;
- Via appropriate reasoning;
- Through multiple levels of abstraction & contexts.154Dimensions
- Rationality → Judgement155Rational process leads to good judgements.
6.1.2 Circumstance Awareness
- Rationality isn’t “following the heart” nor “following the head”.
- Rationality is being aware; understanding; It’s the opposite of “blindly” following anything.156This doesn’t mean “being realistic/idealistic”, which is irrational.
- It’s understanding “where am I” & “where I want to go”.
6.1.3 Reasoning Methods
- There are 2 ways to reason: A. Unconscious(Intuition), AND B. Conscious(Logic)
- Emotion is circumstance/outcome, not intellect.
- They can be used independently/together–depending on the appropriateness.
- Every circumstance has many levels of abstraction.157E.g. I can look at the tree, or the forest, or the chlorophyll.
- Reduction vs. Abstraction
- Every circumstance has multiple contexts; I can think about the same circumstance in multiple ways.158E.g. A “failing company” isn’t just financially failing, but also politically/technologically failing.159E.g. A school isn’t just a place for education, but is also a place for daycare/propaganda/feeding/socialization.
- Many unsolved problems are framed in the wrong context.
- The rationality of past decisions has to be evaluated based on the circumstance, not the outcome.[/mfn]“A mistake is not something to be determined after the fact, but in the light of the information until that point.”[/mfn]
- Although, fundamentally, rationality is about getting results.160“Rational way” ≈ “the way that gets results”.
- If a process consistently brings no results, it’s not rational.
6.1.7 Knowledge of Irrationality
- Regardless of “if I process through multiple levels of abstractions & contexts”, if the intellect fails, it’s irrational.
- Knowledge of fallacies is useful for correcting faulty logic.
- Knowledge of biases is useful for correcting faulty intuitions.
- Contradictions of “things that used to be regarded as truths(correct)” are useful references of irrationality.
6.1.8 Essential Knowledge
- Knowledge is the basis of all processes.161Information processing is impossible without information.162Even intuition is based on knowledge.
- If I have a lot of essential knowledge, it’s easier to have rational processes.
- The more objective(=falsifiable) knowledge is more likely to be true.163Politics promotes the exact opposite.
6.1.9 Theory of Knowledge
- A solid theory of knowledge is an effective foundation for all knowledge.
- It’s a guide for discerning if a piece of knowledge is true/false.
- The Beginning of Infinity
6.1.10 Biases & Heuristics
- Biases & heuristics aren’t necessarily irrational; they (usually) trade results164ideally insignificantfor efficiency165saving a lot of time & energy166which is another type of result.
- Heuristics may even account for biases(irrational thinking).
- Biases & heuristics are evaluated by meta-reasoning.167And that, if based on a solid theory of knowledge + essential knowledge, they’re better.
- ‘Intuition’ comes from the unconscious.
- It’s fast & creative; It doesn’t necessarily “make sense”.
- It’s often associated with emotions. It shouldn’t be.168We often mistake emotions for intuitions.
- ‘Logic’ comes from the conscious.
- It’s slow & logical; It “makes sense”.169That’s the job.
- It’s generally closer to rationality.
6.2.3 Intuition vs. Logic
- ‘Intuition’ & ‘logic’ often collide.
- ∴ Rational judgement is necessary.
- With little time, intuition is the only option.
- With ample time, logic is significantly better, generally.170If something can be determined by logic, intuition doesn’t matter.
6.2.4 Not Enough Logic
- People tend to rely heavily on intuition, which is irrational.171It’s because logical reasoning is intellectually taxing; the conscious is much less powerful than the unconscious.
- The vast majority of decisions are better made with logic.
- Intuition is only more effective than logic at the edges of intellectual capacities: time shortage, OR knowledge shortage, OR vast complexity.
6.2.5 Intuition + Logic
- A person typically:
- “Decides” by ‘intuition’, AND
- “Justifies” by ‘logic’.
- However, adding reasons to an intuitive decision is faulty.
- It’s motivated reasoning.
- Logical reasoning is a means of criticism for an intuitive idea.
6.2.6 Intuitive Judgements
- When dealing with vast complexities,172Everything except physics, more so humans/societies/etc.I have to use abstractions.173E.g. I can’t try to solve cancer with particle physics; I have to use chemistry (probably).
- I can add intuition on top of reasoning.
- More complexity → More Nuance ≈ More judgement(intuition)174Judgement is intuition + logic. If intuition is unneeded, there’s no need for judgement; it’s one way. (Computers have no judgement.)
- Rationality comes from meta-reasoning.175In order to employ the right way, I must figure out(=reason about) what doesn’t work.
- Meta-reasoning isn’t reasoning about the actual task, but reasoning about the processing(reasoning) about the task(s).
- It’s not exactly “finding the best way”; it’s applying constant skepticism to every (seemingly) rational process.176Reasoning has gaps; intuition is distorted by emotion; assumptions are false. Error-correction is absolutely necessary.
- It has a separate set of requirements:
- With self-awareness, I can account for my strengths/weaknesses.
- Clear Thinking
- If my head’s filled with junk, I can’t think straight.177Reasoning based on flawed knowledge & gaps in logic produces false conclusions.178Even intuition falters with a lot of untruths in the head.
- The “rational approach” is essentially anti-dogma—being “open-minded”.
- It means questioning everything: “Why? So what? Is it?“179Including other “qualified” skeptics–peer-reviewed literature.
*Click to fold
– 7.1.1 What’s Money?
– 7.1.2 Money-value
– 7.1.3 Peace
– 7.1.4 Intrigue
– 7.1.5 Almost Unmeasurable
– 7.1.6 Ethics
– 7.1.7 Competition
7.1.1 What’s Money?
- Money is: A. Store of value, AND B. Medium of exchange.
- It satisfies the conditions much better than barter.
- A: Added consistency & permanence
- B: Added efficiency & portability
- Unlike assets, it doesn’t inherently have/produce value.180Cash doesn’t catch fish; fishing rod does.
- Money-making is:
- Creating something(service) of value, and
- Exchanging it (with someone else) for money.
- The money-value of something (to a given person) is whatever the person is willing to pay for it.
- Value = Fulfills desire(s)
- ∴ Money-value is a measure of desire.
- Hence, money-value is face-value181fulfilling immediate desires, not intrinsic-value182fulfilling ultimate desires.
- Just because you’re willing to pay 100 for ‘x’ doesn’t mean it makes your overall life 100 better.
- For (most) people, peace is the ultimate desire.
- The path to true-peace is ownership. However, most of ownership can’t be bought.
- Independence can’t be bought; Freedom can be assisted.
- ∴ (Morally & Ethically) Providing freedom is the most valuable, applicable, service.183For most people.
- For those without peace, intrigue is only optional.
- For those with ownership, intrigue is the ultimate desire.184The desire for intrigue grows with more peace.
- ∴ Providing intrigue is the most valuable service.185Given: peace
7.1.5 Almost Unmeasurable: Time
- “Life itself”186survivalis worth ~∞.187In my deathbed, I’m willing to pay $∞ to live another day.188Given: it’s a positive experience; if life is net-negative, I’m willing to pay $∞ to die ASAP.189Enough pain is worth more than survival.
- “Extra life”190time isn’t worth ~∞, because paying for it comes at the cost of today(time).
- Basically, my time is worth my timely(hourly) rate; my time is worth as much as the amount of value I can produce in that time.191E.i. If I buy 5 life-hours for $5, but it takes >5 hours to make $5, it’s a losing deal.
- However, with financial freedom, time is worth ~∞.192I don’t need to recover the money spent.
- 1 life is worth as much as the cost to save 1 life. AND/OR,
- A life is worth as much as it can contribute to the society.1931 doctor (who can save more lives) is worth more than 1 teacher, ethically.
- In the short-term: Cost(Expectations)194A person pays by the expectations. – Value = Ethical-ness
- Wealth creation is ethical; wealth capture is unethical.
- Generally, a person will pay no less than the value of the service.
- ∴ Money-making is ethical.195because it is net-giving
- Stealing money is moral NOT ethical.
- If a certain product(service) already exists, creating the same product doesn’t add as much value.
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