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Messages - serendipity

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Bring and Brag / invent a system of divination
« on: February 04, 2022, 04:16:21 pm »
i'm not sure this is quite the right place, but it seemed like the most appropriate one. i thought some people here might be interested in this thing i'm running:

You can tell if you're heavily influenced in this way by whether significant group paradigm shifts, cause you to tune out completely, as opposed to redirecting your focus on adapting to the new paradigm and/or fighting it/supporting it. Maybe a fact comes out about some political topic that makes your "Tribe's" Reality Map fall apart. Front-brain auto-pilot will favor incorporation of the new information into your personal Reality Map and presenting it to your Tribe for review. Back-brain auto-pilot will take you offline for a few weeks, and then you'll be back to beating the same dead horse. Or maybe you don't even need the downtime to escape, and you're able to forget the information or use memes to (in your mind) refute it without extra consideration.

hmm, that's interesting - i would usually interpret that sort of scenario in terms of the narrativist framework (it's formulated about cults, but we're all a little bit narrativist) - our core beliefs are usually too abstract to be refuted by a single fact coming out, and the beliefs that can be refuted like that usually function as excuses for an underlying belief generally of the form 'there is an evil power which is responsible for injustice, and a good power which is coming to destroy it and give us and them what we and they deserve'. i suppose there's no conflict, narrativism is the back-brain approach and that's how it convinces itself that the old horse still has some beating left in it

that's a good point - funnily enough i think i saw someone writing recently about not mistaking a deliberately adversarial environment for a neutral one. i really should get around to learning about marketing

Think for Yourself, Schmuck! / thinking for yourself is a group activity
« on: January 23, 2022, 08:47:53 pm »

(in which i demonstrate the traditional arrogance of youth without any evidence or relevant experience, thus:)

when people do (or don't do) important things, it's usually for a good reason. or at least a reason no worse than anybody else's - sure, we could say that nobody has good reasons for anything because as a species our brains are just fundamentally not very good, but because that applies to everybody and probably always will there's not really any useful action to take in response to it. i prefer to frame it as a good reason, because drawing a distinction between 'good' and 'less bad' is rhetorically cute but not very helpful when it comes to reality where no available choice can really be believably called good.

what i'm getting at is, if you've told someone* to think for themselves, explained what you mean, directly shown why it matters and why they personally should care and just how much fun it can be, you may be wondering why - even after trying it out - they aren't making a habit of it. yes, it's effortful and sometimes painful, but isn't it worth it? the thing is, a lot of that effort and pain depends on context. if you start asking awkward questions and everyone around you just looks confused and asks if you're okay (or offers to fire you) then it's going to be a lot more work to keep it up than with people who'll run with it. when someone insists on keeping their head down and instrumentalising themselves, it's often because they're surrounded by institutions that make it especially painful to interact with them in your capacity as a human being.

if you think someone should Think For Themselves(tm) then you can smack them with the sharp edge of the nearest handy metaphor and watch them rub their head, look around, take a few tentative steps over broken glass and go right back to hiding outside of themselves. it might be funny. or you could try to make contexts and cultures (like discordia) that actively reward a bit of criticism, where we can help each other be for ourselves and survive in that state for longer. it's quite enough effort to work around our inconvenient neurology in order to be alive without being in an environment that works against us as well, it's a pretty long shot to expect many people in a hostile environment to hang on to the Horrible Truth long enough to fix that environment, so as far as possible what about starting from the environment?

* for instance, yourself

« on: October 06, 2021, 12:47:51 am »
bump because I came across this thread and, while (unsuccessfully) trying to find a full version of any of her songs still on the internet, found out that she died a couple of months ago.

Apple Talk / Re: Introductions, Part VI: Welcome to Our PD Party
« on: April 16, 2021, 12:10:45 am »
Hey, I'm new. Well, I've lurked here on and off for a while, but new to saying anything (not that I'm likely to say very much, I suspect).
I found discordia five or six years ago, thought it was funny, and kept coming back to it for some reason. I have trouble expressing why it seems important, maybe I'm just scared of never doing anything that matters.
At the moment I'm into theoretical computer science and stories that are wholly metaphorical, but part of why I'm here (other than probably needing to get some social interaction somewhere) is that I keep running into the same ideas and it seems like being here might make it harder to let myself get stuck.

As far as recipes go, all I've really got to share is my housemate's halloween drink, consisting of lemon juice, sugar, peach schnapps, green food colouring and as much shredded mint as will fit in the bottle.

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