Through observations I have seen that man, in his most widespread form, is stagnant. This motionless of the heart is tied to his misplaced will or the lack of it altogether (the possibility of this is debatable). Simply put if one does not have a strong will then his actions shall be dictated by other (exterior) factors. Furthermore his spiritual development will be hindered by the fact that he does not have the desire to seek.
However this "will" question is a far more delicate one. There comes a time when change has no more meaning and man is untied from "will", Schopenhauer has more on this. The fact of the matter is that by taking the oriental approach of minimizing your desires you eliminate frustrations and ultimately achieve happiness. In a way the will of having no will.
Maybe the issue is not in having a will or not having desires but in having a correct direction. How can we correctly assess such a thing? Let's leave it for another passing thought.
Nothing that man creates will live longer than this universe, a lonely space probe could still fly millions of years after humanity is no longer and seconds before the Big Crunch but after that, nothing, the snake bites it's tail, everything is recycled and reborn with another flash of light. If this is life, then life has death and if we have souls that don't experience death, do they experience life? Maybe souls are beyond life and death created before creation itself, emanating from Eternity.
If our true nature is that of a soul, why are we here, is life a punishment, a reward, a transition... or is there nothing beyond this universe and the universe itself is one strange thing that was born and will die like everything within itself... if it was created, it can't be infinite, can it? However, have you witnessed the death of an atom? Maybe we, like the building blocks of matter don't die, but change.... A part of me could probably make it into a sun, somewhere out there, who knows... who cares... it's death anyway you choose to call it.
My life is centered around books, the ideas in them to be more precise. Ideas some other dead or dying individuals considered worthy for posterity. In a way we should try to make our life as good and long as possible and be surrounded by the fiction of our minds, yet some of us are not satisfied with this and search for more, like I did.
Photo: painting by Tim Gustard
Photo: painting by Tim Gustard
Barack Hussein Obama II
The American president's performance (indeed it was somewhat of a show) was something a typical American could relate to. Simplicity enriched with idealism and a hefty does of shallowness. The idea of USA's exceptional role in the world is still strong as a mindset. In order "to prevent a third world war" the United States, after the Second World War "worked with many nations". Presumably also with the United Kingdom that under Churchill created plans to invade the Soviet Union. The US itself had plans to nuke Moskow. Furthermore "they supported the steady emergence of strong democracies accountable to their people instead of any foreign power", wonderful phrase but coming from the mouthpiece of the US is deeply puzzling. This country has a long history of interventions in other countries in order to place political or military leaderships favorable to their interests. In Afghanistan they armed the Taliban, remember? Not to mention South America, Panama maybe?
The speech goes on with interesting points but then you get to parts like "we see greater polarization (...) movements on the far right (...) calling for the building of walls to keep out immigrants" targeting Hungary but also, funny enough, the US itself, remember Mexico? Another example of dissonance between American speech and actions. Obama recognized Iran as "revolutionary", the third in order after "rising China" and "resurgent Russia". Rising implies evolution, resurgency implies regeneration, reviving after a bad period. Obama makes clear the fact that these three "old enemies, perceived adversaries" are getting stronger while America "cannot by itself impose stability on a foreign land", speeking of Iraq. The general idea is not that Obama says that the US is weak but that the US is searching for allies.
He mentions "revolutionary" Iran's violation of the NPT while omitting that Israel, despite the fact that it has nukes, is not a member of the NPT and does not allow international inspectors. "America has few economic interests in Ukraine", if it had, we would of known by now however it has many interests in making life hard for Russia. "For 50 years, the United States pursued a Cuba policy that failed to improve the lives of the Cuban people. We changed that." We will see what the Cuban president has to say about that but at least in western media it seems that something changed especially after Ukraine. The US tried to invade Cuba once and to assassinate Castro hundreds of times.
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin
Putin's speech had the following main themes: to strengthen the UN by building on the principles on which it was created (disdain from scheming and trickery and a spirit of cooperation) ; state sovereignty ; the Islamic State did not come from nowhere ; he addressed the Muslim spiritual leaders to intervene and counteract Islamic State propaganda; the WTO should be respected and states should refrain from imposing unilateral sanctions; economic selfishness ; climate change.
Climate change is almost unilaterally acknowledged as a problem. The Russians tried to adopt a different strategy from their American counterparts, they situate themselves somewhere above and don't want to interfere in other countries and they want these countries to know that. They don't care about corruption or human rights, these are internal issues to be addressed by the sovereign country in question, not by a foreign power. Russia doesn't propose to civilize the universe, at least not yet. The Islamic State issue is an almost open attack on the United States of America. This is indeed common sense because in truth ISIS was armed either directly or through third parties by the US to bring down Assad. Similar in concept to how the CIA used Ukrainian far right groups to bring down Yanukovych.
You can read the full transcripts here: Putin ; Obama
Kharim Khan Zand was a "Vakil", a ruler and founder of a short lived dynasty in Iran in the 18th century (1751 - 1794). His rule was not marked by glorious military conquests but by the stability and equilibrium he gave to the state, whose capital was in Shiraz. His time was a transition towards the modernity attributed to the Qajars.