"The unedited musings of a recovering madman"

This latest rant was triggered through an excerpt from Andrew Cohen's newsletter here

Here's the portion that did me in:

Finding the Light

Hi mike,

I trust your summer is going great. Let's savor every moment of it . . .and then we will enjoy what comes next. That's all there are - moments to be appreciated.

Do you think there are any situations that are hopeless or incapable of change or healing? It is not so. A jasmine tree proved this to me when I took some cuttings and planted them in pots. After a few weeks the bare sticks began to burst forth with tiny bright green blossoms. Then I noticed that the buds on one of the cuttings were growing downward. "Look," I pointed out to Dee, "I must have planted this one upside down; the leaves are headed toward the ground."

"Don't worry," she answered, "They'll find their way to the light."

Sure enough, after a few days the little leaves changed direction, and soon they were all moving rapidly toward the sun.

I marveled that the jasmine bush was intelligent enough to figure out where the light was and head for it. Surely, I reasoned, we embody the same wisdom to find our source of strength, and we have the ability to transform errors, no matter how seemingly insurmountable.

Ok, this is out of context, but the assumption being made is that this story can be applied to human being and doing.

In my opinion, this is the reason that we have so much strife in the world.  It is not the essence of this story--that a built-in intelligence exists--but the idea that if only we following our hearts everything would be hunky-dory.

Quite frankly, I feel (this is just me now) that this is pollyanna and VERY DANGEROUS.  This "projection" onto people and the inference to societal problems is not only failing in actionablility, it fails to accommodate the parallel streams of consciousness occurring among people.

Plants (according to the Santiago Theory of Cognition) cognize just like people do, although they don't have reflective self-awareness.  They act out of a simple set of rules that drive replication.

Humans on the other hand have a reflective consciousness that moves far beyond replication.

To substitute simple actions of a plant and then to superimpose them onto a complex adaptive system with an reflective consciousness goes from a stretch to ludicrous.

Plants don't blow themselves up in buses!

The oversimplification of life leads us to take simple approaches to very complex problems--in itself creating even more complexity.  While I rant against driving this chain too far, it is critical to stop using these stories to correlate between non-reflective life and reflective life.

While we can learn many things about life from life, we have to be careful about projection to forms that have no correlation, or limited correlation to the context.

I think we'll all just sit back and let the millions in Africa dying of aids and infecting needless victims (with their rituals of light finding) with HIV...and we'll just let the Palestinians and Israel work it out and we'll just let them all find the light...no worries....

The oversimplification and application of unrelated paradigms to each other may be a very inefficient way to solve problems--to put it mildly.

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