Philosophy

A philosophy that minimizes philosophizing.

56
He who knows (the Tao) does not (care to) speak (about it); he
who is (ever ready to) speak about it does not know it.

He (who knows it) will keep his mouth shut and close the portals
(of his nostrils). He will blunt his sharp points and unravel the
complications of things; he will attemper his brightness, and bring
himself into agreement with the obscurity (of others). This is called
'the Mysterious Agreement.'

(Such an one) cannot be treated familiarly or distantly; he is
beyond all consideration of profit or injury; of nobility or
meanness:--he is the noblest man under heaven.
Tao Te Ching ch.56

Interesting that the church of the Subgenius promotes opening your third nostril.

Philosophical Problems

As far as I can remember, I've always approached philosophy as a set of "problems". It seems like a very "human" thing to do, here's the Wikipedia entry for List_of_unsolved_problems_in_philosophy, I've probably dwelled on every bullet point listed there, but here are my big 5:

  1. Nature of the Form_of_the_Good and True_Will
    • This is a fundamental investigation of what is a non-anthropocentric "good" and how to be in touch with one's True Will.
    • "Form of the Good" sounds a lot like the alchemist's Philosopher's_stone.
    • Human level morality vs. a morality of a grander scheme and seemingly the conflict between them, may actually be just phenomena experienced due to the structure of "Mind".
  2. Nature of mind/will, physics/mathematics
    • Locus of Control? and how that determines our philosophy, sort of a meta-philosophy mostly
    • Nature of memory and learning is also interesting, there are systems of memory I've played with that seem powerful.
  3. Aesthetics
    • Why do we find harmony, symmetry, etc. "beautiful"?
    • I also need to study general music theory
  4. Epistemology
    • I don't mess with this much anymore, a lot of this is based on the individual and their "imprints"
  5. Ontology/Phenomenology/Cosmology
    • Another one that boils down to "it's a dream" in a sense, cosmology of the origin of the universe/space-time can be fun

Inspirational Reads

Consider making books a category on their own vs. being lumped in with research, or maybe all this should be in with research, but it just doesn't feel the same.

  • Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
    • There are many translations, I currently have "A New Translation by Derek Bryce & Leon Wieger", it feels like one of the more "technical" translations, but comes with copious commentary. There are also online translations, for example here and here. Aleister Crowley also has a translation for those interested in The Beast's perspective. Contemplation of the poem, with an open mind to see things from different perspectives with different meaning. It's a very interpretive text, poetic at times, but things that deal with cosmology and the fundamental essence of the universe.

I learned my first big philosophical words listening to talks by psychedelic guru Terrence McKenna back in community college. I had a 64MB MP3 player that I'd load with his talks discussing culture as an OS (Operating System), psychedelic individualism, and other various explorations of the heady "Turn on, tune in, drop out" variety. Eventually ran into much more with the writing of Robert Anton Wilson, which I started with Prometheus Rising (highly recommended). More recently have found Nicholas Nassim Taleb and his risk centric musings, risk convexity is one of the most important takeaways from what I've read from him. Arthur Koestler's Ghost in the Machine is also excellent.

Concepts

Just ideas... maybe "concepts" could be a whole wiki group in itself instead of philosophy, I'll consider it before things get too complex and interconnected.

Scenius

Maltheism