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On the Equality of People [Friday | 24 August 2007 | 8:27pm]
It is dangerous to confuse society's beliefs with one's own. The opinions a society should hold should sometimes be, as in the case of the Equality of People, contrary to the the individual's.

Society should believe that everyone is equal. But to do so disregards individuality. Even "different but equal" puts everyone in the same category. Individuals should not do this. To consider everyone equal is to assign some value to them -- but that it is all. It is as if saying everyone is worth 1,000,000. It is meaningless, except to know that everyone is greater than nothing. We could be large when compared to 10, or small when compared to one trillion. If a person considers everyone equal, he does not distinguish himself. By adopting society's opinions he sacrifices his own, and diminishes his individuality.

To be a strong individual, to hold unique opinions, one must be unfair and unjust from the perspective of society. To admire someone, or to consider someone a friend, is meaningless, unless you value that person more than average. You must be able to compare that person to others and say, "I value him more; he is more important" -- exactly what society must not say. To society, all people are equal; but can you tell that to the woman you love?

One must believe that some people are worth more than others. This is not to pass judgment on their inherent value, but their value to oneself. Which is more important? I like to think they're not equal, that my opinion matters more.
3 intellectual starting a discussionintellectuals engaged in discussion | voice your opinion

Mr. Kamin [Saturday | 3 March 2007 | 5:35pm]
He taught the curriculum well. But he taught life even better. He respected our intelligence and common sense, and skipped over familiar phrases such as "don't drink and drive" to teach us valuable lessons as only Mr. Kamin could.

He knew that when we enrolled in 'Principles of Mathematics 12 Enriched', that was what we expected to get. He delivered on 'Principles of Mathematics 12', each class hoisting the triangle of whiteboard, marker, and graph paper by their centroid, the pertinent example. With this unstoppable force Mr. Kamin crushed misconceptions and common fallacies and conquered a new facet of our course with characteristic efficiency and well-timed humour. Under his leadership every topic to be covered became a battle to be fought: solving equations against extraneous roots, inverse and reciprocal functions against bad notation, justifying our answer against illegible handwriting. When we left the classroom the ink of victory was fresh on our pages.

But when he covered the 'Enriched' part of our course we got more than we signed up for. In the intervals of fighting collectively for The Correct Answer, he engaged us in a subtler but more important mission: to seek out individually Our Best Answer, to discover what was most valuable to each of us, personally. Year after year problem solving had been taken out of the course and replaced by reinforcements of modern society's view of standardized tests, that smiles on our faces should come not from what we wrote on our exam, but from the number somebody else wrote on top. As children of this era, we entered Mr. Kamin's classroom with the knowledge that to society, in a sense, the closer this fractional number was to 1, the closer we were to being a whole person. As with all other logical and sincerely-formed ideas, Mr. Kamin did not denounce this knowledge. "I know you care about marks," he would say, "you want to get into university." But he explored alternative perspectives and, by example, taught us to do so as well. "Why should you write math contests?" he would ask us. As with all questions he asked, we relied on Mr. Kamin to give us the answer. "It looks good on your application," he reminded us, as a prelude to his true response: "Because you're supposed to enjoy problem solving, this is Math 12 Enriched. It's good for you!" He didn't use more words to fortify his position. The decision to accept his first reason, his second, or our own, was left up to each one of us. But through his impressive command of voice and relaxed but firm posture, we saw that we couldn't go wrong in following his lead.

In this way Mr. Kamin taught us to always obey the rules, but when we got the chance, we should consider their merit. Guided by this simple mantra we would always succeed, and never stray too far down the wrong path.
2 intellectual starting a discussionintellectuals engaged in discussion | voice your opinion

What is as pure as yearning? [Monday | 10 April 2006 | 10:09pm]
One thing I yearn for: true love. If I ever get it.

Maybe it's not a problem with women, and it's just in my head. . . . As if the two are mutually exclusive. Actually, if the two perspectives are represented by coplanar nonparallel lines, then they only conflict at one point. Which means that I can't look down both perspectives at the same time, unless I live in three dimensions. But when I depart from the plane, I miss the experience.
7 intellectual starting a discussionintellectuals engaged in discussion | voice your opinion

There's something better than being smart [Friday | 24 March 2006 | 6:30pm]
If I'm traveling at a constant velocity in two dimensions, from a given one-dimensional perspective I could be moving at top speed, very slow, not at all, or even backwards.
voice your opinion

Freudian Slip [Monday | 22 August 2005 | 12:58pm]
Apparently I unconsciously wanted my (real-life) friends to find my livejournal. My conscious mind will not have this, and thus I have locked my previous entries, and this journal will become friends-only.

I have left one entry unlocked to give new readers a taste of the journal. If you are at all intrigued, send me a message or email, or reply to this post. Don't be shy; I will be flattered.
7 intellectual starting a discussionintellectuals engaged in discussion | voice your opinion

Meaning of life, etc. [Wednesday | 2 March 2005 | 9:58pm]
[ mood | contemplative ]

It is relatively easy to make solid arguments to the relative effect that life has no meaning. Generally such an argument would explain how everybody is born, and then dies, and how we have no existance outside of that, and thus our life has no significant meaning, as we are just part of "the state of affairs" of the universe.

I say that such arguments are solid, because they are not directly refutable; however, I believe they are (dualistically) sophistic in that they do not recognize the mind-half of dualism.

These arguments rely on the fact that meaning does not exist inherently in the universe; meaning is created by the mind. To evaluate the nature of meaning, we must first evaluate the nature of the mind, which is impossible. It is inexplicable how, out of the corporeal firing neurons in the brain, we get the incorporeal mind. And even if, at some time in the future, specific patterns were to be discovered relating the states of brain and mind, the singular holistic feeling and sense of existance of the mind would still not be able to be explained.

How I feel to be a single being is inexplicable. There is absolutely no logical reason that a single identifiable entity, me, should come out of my brain; and that this entity considers itself to be a single entity, takes responsibility for itself, and still identifies itself as the same entity, though changed, at different times in its existance. There is no way to describe myself other than to state that I exist; in other words, to say, "I am".

And thus, if there is no logical reasoning as to why I exist, yet I exist nonetheless, the same logic can be applied to other things deriving from the mind. That is, any concept deriving from the mind has no logical origin in the universe, since the mind has no logical origin; however, these things, deriving from the mind, still have validity of existance just like the mind does.

So, while physically there is no meaning of life, I exist and I feel there is a meaning of life; and thus, this will be the case for me.

1 intellectual starting a discussionintellectuals engaged in discussion | voice your opinion

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