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Decision Making

February 7, 2008

Making a decision, and sticking with it, can be one of the most difficult things to do in life. Oftentimes people just can’t decide what to do with themselves, and don’t understand why others seem to have no trouble. This really is a huge subject, so I decided to write about it in intricate depth.

Some people have such confidence and strength, everyone admires them. They know what they want out of life, they pursue it through all odds, and end up standing on top of a mountain somewhere screaming, “Yeeaahhhhhh! I did it everyone!” They have some sort of unflenching will-power and determination you just can’t help but admire. Others keep jumping around here, then there. Never satisfied, and have no idea what to do with themselves. Aimless and randomly they wander life, oftentimes not knowing what’s wrong with them.

The “go-getters” seem to have contempt for those who can’t figure out what to do with themselves. They look upon them as “weak”. “Why can’t you make a decision? Here I’ll make one for you. Do this!” Then the person who is in indecision, sits quietly with a frown, and walks away. Unfortunately this dynamic is not as easy as the go-getter seems to think it is.

Upon closer investigation, you find this is the the most complex of questions you could possibly ask yourself or anyone else. I’ll start by simply throwing some of the problems out in the air, and then we’ll closely inspect these problems, and see what conclusions we come to.

The first problem I seem to come across, upon thinking about this issue, is does a decision need to be motivated by anything, or can decisions be made without any motivation? This problem is crucial.

Greg and I met the other night, and as we sat in the car he was telling me of encounters he’s had with women. A problem arose in Greg’s mind as he was dating one of these women. Everything was going perfectly, and the girl was crazy over him. But a question arose, “Does this girl like me? Or am I just hitting the right buttons?” Greg has been studying women, and how to create attraction with women, and he came to feel that now, as he’s mastering a lot of the techniques, that the women do not really like “him”, he’s just pressing a bunch of mechanical buttons in the women, and getting a positive response. Whether you believe women’s emotions are so easily controlled is another issue entirely, but for now, we’re dealing with a particular set of beliefs, and what a person believes is oftentimes what’s most important, when we’re dealing with emotional health.

I then posed a question back to him, “What are you, other than a free will which can press buttons?” He thought for a moment, than said, “Yes, good point.”

I brought up this specific example because I find it very interesting. Now in many couples, people can fall in love because of a “magic” bond. Women say that the man just makes her feel a certain way. It just feels “right”, as they say. You often hear, “When I find the right guy, I’ll just know.” That’s another way of saying, “I’m making this decision based on how the guy makes me feel.” Now not all women are this way, but I have come across many who are. And I think how emotionally happy a person is when around another person does greatly influence the decision making process when choosing a lover, even if they don’t understand every reason WHY the person makes them feel so good.

Greg’s angle is somewhat the same. If he felt he understood WHY the girl liked him, and felt it was just mechanical attraction which caused her to like “him”, he no longer had interest in the girl. After all, she doesn’t really like “him” so much. Just as the girls often want a magic attraction between herself and the guy, which she doesn’t neccessarily have to understand, Greg also wants magic.

What do I mean by magic? Well, oftentimes people want to be swept away. Romantic exchanges often talk about providence. The two were “meant” for each other. Other times it’s “God planned for us to be together”. Some higher purpose, or the fundamental forces behind what created reality, brought the couple into existence, magically – in some unspeakable fashion.

When people speak about magic, God’s plan for them, being ‘meant’ for each other, etc, what they’re really saying is they don’t want to make the decision as to who they choose for their life partner. On one the hand, if you were to ask them if they chose each other, they would most certainly reply that they did. What good would their love be if their lover didn’t choose them of all the others in the world! Yet on the other hand, they also claim that their coming together was instituted by some higher power. Fate has brought them together. It couldn’t have been otherwise. Now what is it, did fate bring them together, or did they choose one another? Strangely they seem to think both, and are unconscious of the contradiction.

I bring up this dilemma mainly because anytime you want ‘God’s plan’ to make your decision for you, or fate, or magic, or any other non-understandble force or entity, you are avoiding making a decision, and since this entry is about decision making, this is a central note to make.

Now it’s common knowledge that people want deeper relationships than just sexual attraction. A beautiful woman wants men to like her for her “deeper” aspects, such as her mind, and values. Why is this? Just as Greg has pressed buttons in the women and made them attracted to him, this woman is using her sexual attraction to push mechanical buttons in the men. She doesn’t feel the men like “her” for “her”. They only like her good looks. She’s an object, not a person.

But there’s many important questions to ask. What fundamentally is the guy? What fundamentally is the girl?

This philosophical problem caused me great difficulties for many years. It caused me to avoid relationships all together. I’d see a girl and say to myself, “Don’t like a girl for her sexual attraction. Jason, value the REAL her.” So I’d try my best to ignore a girl’s looks, and go for her other qualities. Then you meet a girl who is successful, with a good head on her shoulders. Then I say to myself, “Jason, don’t date a girl for what you can get out of her! Love her for her.” I wondered, “If I’m attracted to a girl who has money, and intelligence… How is that different than being attracted to a girl with good looks? I would only value intelligence so it can come off on me. I would only value money the girl has so it can make our life together easier.” I then thought, “This is bad. You shouldn’t love someone just because of what you can get out of them!” So I started to contemplate altrustic versions of love.

Now why is this repulsive to a person? Why is it bad to like a girl because she’s good looking? Why is it bad to like a girl who has money? Why is it bad to like a girl who is intelligent? Why? Because it’s not liking “her” for “her”. My Christian upbringing seemed to tell me that relationships were all about giving, and it seemed wrong to just take. Well, if she’s not how she looks, not her mind, and not what she possesses, for goodness sake, what is she?

I’ll readily admit, whatever the girl really is, she isn’t her body. I forget how long it is, but I think every couple years the body is completely renewed by new matter based on the food we eat. She’s certainly not her possessions. She could lose all she possesses, yet she would still remain. And we can’t say she’s her intelligence either, because people can change their views on things.

So what is she? Well she is a free will, trapped in that particular body, and has a certain capability of changing the world around her based on her decisions. This brings up the subject philosophers call “authenticity”. Basically, everything the girl has asserted her free will to change, leaves a mark behind of who she really is. Almost like her perfume lingering on the furniture after she’s gone. Every decision she makes leaves a mark on reality with her signature.

Yet this also isn’t what she is. For, as we all know, she can change her actions. Just because she used to be a certain way, does not mean she has to continue to be that way. If she used to be a Buddhist, does not mean she has to stay true to that particular faith. Maybe she reads a book, and becomes an athiest, or a Christian, or who knows. Maybe she used to be a lawyer, but tired of that way of life, becomes a school teacher. You can’t trap a person in one particular way or walk of life and say that’s who we are, because we always can change.

So, this leaves us to say that a woman, or man, basically is a free will potential. The ability to make decisions, and leave your mark on reality. Ok, easy enough. We are our free will trapped in the present, moving toward the future. Our past may or may not be attached to our present, depending on how we’ve chosen to deal with our past. Whether a past event influences your future decisions or not depends really on whether you’ve chosen to keep dragging it along or not (assuming no unconscious motivations). But basically, we’re a free-will trapped in our body for the present, and moving toward the future. Ok.

Now back to our original problem. As the guy, wanting to fall in love with this woman, what am I supposed to fall in love with? I can’t fall in love with a free will. The free will is intangible. It’s imperceptible. It exists, yet it doesn’t.

Maybe I could fall in love with her authenticity? I could fall in love with that signature she’s left behind in the past? I could fall in love with her past decisions? Though to me this seems like we’re smothing our faces in the furniture she was sitting in, hoping to catch the smell of her perfume, we’ll still seriously consider this as an option. Maybe this is the best way we have to capture the “real her”.

To be technical, I can’t really fall in love with “her”. I have to fall in love with things. Even if she is the author and molder of these things, I must love things. But falling in love with her “authentic signatures” she’s left on reality is terribly difficult.

Say she chooses to get her hair done. Now, us as guys are not supposed to fall in love with the hair itself, but only how the hair has changed. Good luck with that. So she has long hair, then she gets it styled short. I’m supposed to fall in love with some sort of non-existent difference between the two, based on a comparison of what she once was in my memory (the images of her with long hair) compared with the present view I have of her (the images of her with short hair).

Now we come to futhur complications. Oftentimes a girl makes changes to herself, yet, us as guys, as we normally do, do not notice these changes. Now what causes us to notice the inital states of the girl to begin with? I can speak for all us men, we do not normally notice every detail about a girl. I have met women, and I don’t always notice their ear-rings, or what shoes she’s wearing, or even sometimes (if my mind is thinking on other things), what she was even wearing.

If we don’t notice the original states to begin with, we won’t always notice what changes. It’s hard enough most of the time to keep track of everything going on in the present, much less an omniscient photographic memory view of everything that’s also happened during every experience you’ve shared together. Girls spend so much time getting ready before dates in front of the mirror, forgive me, but I readily admit all the work you go through is under-appreciated. Forgive me for not noticing all the work you’ve done to yourself. This makes trying to love the authetic aspects of a girl near impossible to achieve practically.

Now I suppose this situation could be futhur explained. It’s true, as the guy, I am forced to fall in love with the things, yet the girl has things. The girl is not mad that you fall in love with a thing, it’s only when her things are not good enough. She’s not good looking enough. She’s not smart enough. She does not have enough connections and things to offer.

Now I only went into that long discussion to dismiss any sort of weird abstract thoughts people may be having of what it means to love a person for “who they really are”. Whether you’re worried they’re not loving “you for you”, or you’re not loving “them for them”. I wanted to show that this problem ultimately reduces down to things, and you can’t fall in love with their “free will”. You can’t fall in love with some sort of mystic shroud around the person, or within them. You have to fall in love with something tangible and physical. This could be their body, their cooking, their kindness in the way they treat you, etc., but not some intangible “them”.

So we come to yet another difficulty, which is what we’ve been preparing for. Can you, or can you not choose what you fall in love with? Can the guy choose to love the ugly girl’s body, or must he be motivated by her sexual attraction to love her body? Can an intelligent guy love the stupid girl, or must he be motivated by interest in the depth of her knowledge in order to respect her mentally? Can a guy love the beat up car the girl has, or can he only love good cars which accord with his nature?

These are some really powerful questions. Very powerful indeed. I’ve pondered this at great length.

Most people run from these issues, by using providence, the will of God, fate, etc. They want to say they didn’t make the decision, something else did, and brought them together. That way they get around the problem of justifying all that’s going on. The Christian guy says, “I prayed, and God told me she’s the one!” Uh huh. It’s a nice way to rationalize instinct. The cute girl at Bible study… She’s the one! The “Holy Spirit” is leading you! I’m a little sceptical that it’s more likely the old divining rod between his legs.

I find statements of this order quite sad. One time a pastorial position opened at a church which offered a high salary paycheck. It was amazing how many Christians felt it was the “will of God” that they be the pastor. Over 30 ministers felt the will of God moving them to that church. Right. Don’t you think that discredits them from being ministers to the voice of the Lord to begin with? Obviously 29 out of the 30 do not hear from God… That’s another entry, however.

I was telling Greg the other day that this ‘magic’, this ‘providence’, they’re hoping in is really a desire to let go of their own freedom to control their emotions. This is really what magic and being “swept away in romantic passion” is. As Sartre says, they’re running from their own freedom. They don’t want to be in control. That would give them responsibility for their actions and outcomes. With all the complexities and intricacies to such decisions, I suppose we cannot blame them for resorting to much easier systems to make decisions. If people had to understand it all before making a decision, I don’t think many decisions would ever happen. I’m guilty of such fears myself, so I don’t look down on others who pray for God or some higher power to lead them into every aspect of life.

Though it must be stated that running from responsibility is not a healthy mental state to develop. It’s much easier, when things go sour in life, to say God appointed that life to you, and you can’t help it. Fate ordained that you have a horrid relationship. They fear they’ll make a bad decision, and this fear starts to overcome them, so they throw off responsibility and the fear to some invisible entity or force, then say, “It’s not my doing. If things go good, wonderful. But if things go bad, don’t blame me.” It has an overwhelming tendency to stunt personal growth, by running from things you fear, and blaming invisible entities for your problems. People look for meaning and purpose in life when they are in fear of what to do next.

Now Greg, being in complete control (or supposedly anyways) of the woman’s emotions, yet being unsatisfied, is a different case. Greg is in control, yet he doesn’t like it. Greg knows what’s going on. He’s not being swept away in emotion like the women are. In fact, he finds it all rather trivial, and boring. He’s waiting for a girl whom he can’t figure out, and that will attract his interest.

Now this brings us to the point of knowledge. Whatever a man or woman has knowledge of, they also have control of. If you understand the workings of the mind, and emotions (say you’ve studied a lot of depth psychology and psychoanalysis), then you can control what you understand… But we start to ask ourselves whether we like the control we gained?

Greg was frustrated. He told me, “These simple people have it better off than me. I understand all these workings and can get women’s emotions to do anything I please, yet it all bores me. The simple man, he just thinks, ‘God wants me to marry this girl’, and ‘God wants me to work this job’, and he’s more happy than me, even though I know this other guy is just under delusion. I have infinite potential to get any girl I want, but I don’t want any of them. I have freedom, yet I don’t have anything I care to do, as it’s all purposeless. I need some way to direct this mental power I have and invest it into things. I have this high power lazer gun which could destroy any problem I could care to tackle, yet since it all seems meaningless, I just store the gun away and ask myself, ‘What’s the point?'”

I can say this. If you’re looking for magic and unpredictability in life, don’t pursue knowledge. Knowledge removes unpredictability and excitement, and also elimiates all magic clouds around things. If knowledge is not gained in order to serve another less fortunate, then it only leads to boredom. All thrills in whatever it is you study will go away over time. This is the all so popular law of diminishing returns. As I’ve stated in other journal entries, free will requires resistance, and a desire to change something, but knowledge leads to better and better ways to do things, eliminating resistance. So as we see, knowledge and selfishness cannot co-exist without idleness. An omniscient being cannot be selfish without being completely idle. (Possibly this is why God is unchanging?)

We both reflected on the nature of knowledge. As you gain more knowledge, the things you once found perfect, you start to find flaws in. All the imperfections in all around you start to become more and more glaring. In fact, the more “awesome” you become, the more coming down to “crappy” levels bothers you.

If you’re intelligent, hanging around a moron speak a bunch of stupidity bores you to death. In fact, it’s almost as bad as listening to random prattling. It’s just jibberish. Greg told me about a guy who came up to him, to “witness” to him. Greg already knew all about Christianity, and the religion, but the guy just wouldn’t stop talking about the basics of salvation, like he was an idiot who needed to be explained some deep principle he didn’t understand. Greg just wanted to get out of there.

If you’ve never experienced this state, where being around the much less intelligent’s person’s company annoys you, then I can only relate it to you this way. If you’ve spent your life studying, or at least, considerable time improving your mind, listening to a person who has not done so speak on major problems, is kind of like going over to Africa, and having to take part in their fireside rituals, screaming nonsense to their Gods. You tell them you’re having trouble making a decision, then they’re dragging you off to circumcise you, and telling you to drink the chief and your fellow man’s blood. (Note: Just if you’re interested, this ritual really does exist in Africa, when a boy is initiated to become a man. The circumcision symbolizes removal of protection, the boy is taken away from his mother, and the drinking of the other men’s blood symbolizes that he must now live and work with them as one, or the tribe will not survive. The only nourishment he’s allowed is this blood he can drink.) Anyways, you can only take so much, and oftentimes don’t need such cryptic symbolism and painful tortures to learn valuable lessons.

The more knowledge you gain, the sharper the distinctions between yourself and others starts to draw, and the more others faults are more glaring and annoying. The girl you were in love with in high-school, who you thought was miss perfect, with new englightened eyes shows herself to be a self-centered, insecure, boring airhead, with nothing going for her nowadays. You’re running a huge company, travelling the world, studying the nature of the laws which govern the universe and politics. She’s… watching shallow movies, and wasting away in the world of all that’s trivial.

These sorts of problems started to bother me. I started to think, “My goodness, knowledge is poison!” Then I furthur reflected and thought, “Well, this poison existed beforehand as well, knowledge just revealed to me where it was all hidden.” It’s not much different than meeting a girl in a very dimly lit room. “Oh she’s so pretty.” You bring her into a well-lit room and then scream, “Aaaggghhhhh. She’s a monster!” She was ugly in the dark too, unfortunately.

I can remember with me, I began to say to myself, “This is really leading to hatred, and I don’t want to hate people.” Then I thought, “Well, what is a person?” Then I thought about all the aforementioned things, and thought, “What is there to love?”

I can remember in high-school, I was the guy with insecurities. I used to feel I wasn’t good enough for the girls. Girls liked me, but the girls I really liked I never could get. I’d always come in some sort of second place. I’d get hurt when the girl I’d fall for would choose some other, better guy than me.

This partially led to my “mass leveling up” phase, where I wanted to drastically improve myself. I had the crappy car, but I worked hard, now have the awesome car. No money? Now I have the money. Physical attraction? Worked on all that too, and got to where I was looking a lot better. Need things going on? I got to where I was at a way higher level than most people ever achieve. I’m raising capital, running businesses, meeting people, doing stuff.

It’s weird how the roles flipped. I used to not be good enough for the girls, now they’re the ones who’re insecure when around me. But upon meeting these girls, and watching them back in the seat I used to be in greatly disgusted me. I thought, “What are we doing to each other?” Now she’ll go home, after our date, feeling bad about herself. She’ll work hard and improve. By then, I’ll be gone. She’ll meet another guy, and then she’ll do the same thing I did to her. How ridiculous.

It’s hard on people when they see your pearls compared to theirs. They tell about their life, and you see a small pea sized pearl. They speak of it with great pride and joy. Then they ask you about yourself, and you’re put in an awkward position… You don’t want to pull out your pearl. It’s as big as a basketball. She’ll be crushed. Even if you are nice about it all, and don’t look down on her, it’s oftentimes very hard on her to take that in. So you get to where you just kind of slightly open your cloak, she sees the top part of the gigantic pearl, and you leave it at that.

But as stated before, can it be helped? Can you love something when you see everything wrong with it?

It made me wonder if love is like falling in love with a gold balloon. Make sure to keep your distance from it. Keep telling yourself it’s a perfect, solid gold sphere. If you get close enough to it, you’re going to find out it’s a distored, elongated gold-spray painted balloon with air leaking out of it, and paint chipping off.

The only real solution that I’ve found to this problem is to take these steps:

1) To remove all differentation between yourselves and others
2) Believe and try to help bring about change in others, as you did yourself. (Or if you’re behind someone else in an area of life, and see your own nastiness, to set goals and try to improve).

If you compare yourself with others, you find a double-edged sword. It’s true you can always have someone to look up to, even if it’s only an ideal in your mind, but it’s problematic when you turn back around and see others beneath you, and you’re filled with pride. Christians always say, “Keep your eyes on Jesus”, but you always see the ones who live good holy lives in pride, always feeling themselves better than the sinners. It can’t be helped. They look at the sinner, and they see the faults.

The art of removing differentiation between yourselves and others is a big subject. It can’t be explained very easily. I don’t know all there is to know about it, so I don’t completely know how to reach such a state. The best advice I have to give is this. I have found that some sorts of knowledge seem to possess counter-measures against depressing, fault-finding knowledge.

Take psychoanalysis, and Freud’s books for example. I used to view emotionally troubled people as just “messed up”, and “weak minded”. Now with proper knowledge I’ve come to see that they have the same mind and bodily constitution that I have, but in differing circumstances. I see that the problems they’re suffering from, I could easily suffer from as well, if I didn’t have this knowledge to know how to deal with the issues they’re dealing with. I can only speak empirically here, but it seems the more I understood the other person’s weakness, I am both repulsed by it’s nastiness, yet at the same time filled with compassion.

I don’t like to be yelled at, but when I understand why the person is yelling at me I seem to be in a different state of mind when handling the situation. It becomes comparable to someone with a huge bruise. You watch some other person come along, and lightly punch another’s heavily bruised arm. The person with the bruise screams and gets angry. The other sits back with a dumbfounded glance and bickers, “I didn’t hit you that hard man! I was just kidding around! Geez!” As the observer aware of the bruise, you are a lot more compassionate and want to go up to the man hitting the other and say, “Look, you don’t understand this. There’s other things going on here. Please, just be quiet and leave this other person alone.” Unfortunately the person with the bruise doesn’t even know the bruise exists either. He just got very angry out of nowhere when he was filled with anxiety and pain brought forth in the unconscious realm.

I don’t think it’s much different with any type of problem or fault. When you’re financially intelligent, you’re repulsed to see people buried in debt, and seeing poor financial decisions. At the same time, you also have compassion when you find a man buried in debt, and not able to do anything anymore. You see the education system, and how it provides no instruction on these types of affairs. You can’t help but have compassion.

The religious enthusiasts can do crazy things. They come up to you on the streets, telling you to join their group, and if you don’t, awful things are going to happen to you. But if you understand the psychological states which drove them to the religion, instead of looking at it from the perspective of how they’re annoying you, you’re also filled with compassion.

Being able to rid yourself of a distinction between yourselves and others isn’t some state of mind. It’s really knowledge of the other person. It’s being able to leave your own self for the moment, and place yourself in their shoes, and accurately see things from their perspective. This laying yourself in their shoes is what I mean by ‘lack of differentiation between yourselves and others’. You then feel their pain, and understand why they’re at where they’re at, and are the way they are.

You can’t fake this state either. If you’re not intelligent, don’t try to place yourself in the shoes of a Nobel prize winning athiest’s mind. You’re not going to be able to unless you’ve read all his books, and see where he’s coming from. If you’ve never grown up in a home where you’ve been physically and verbally abused, don’t try to act like you understand when you haven’t really studied it or experienced it. It’s hard to place yourself in someone else’s shoes. People oftentimes have a very long past history and a lot of reasons they do what they do. If you’re not willing to really get to know someone, then don’t try to quickly pull off this method. You’ll just make a fool of yourself, and also draw the indignation of the very person you tried to help.

But I said all of this because compassion seems to be love of things which are ugly. It’s not quite as beatific as love of what you believe to be perfection, but it’s the next best thing I suppose. It’s also not an easy thing to do. You can only have compassion on others when you understand how life is from the other’s perspective.

This is why people of low self-confidence and low self-worth come to love compassion. They know it’s better than nothing. They make up stories that they’re sick, and even stories that life is going horrible for them. They talk about being addicted to things. In fact, in circles of people with low self-confidence, it’s the in thing to be addicted to various mild drugs and pills, and talk about who has the worst past, the worst anger issues, etc. They even come to love poverty, as it always draws them more compassion. I met one girl who lied saying she was pregnant. Went around telling everyone that a guy knocked her up, and then left her. Everyone came to her aid. She was surrounded by mourners, all giving her love and attention. “How could he do this to you? You poor thing.” After all the frenzy dissipated, you find it was all a lie. You ask about their past, and you get long stories about how their loved ones were murdered, how they’re an orphan, how their step-father’s a drunkard who beats the step-mother and injures them physically, how they’ve had to sleep in the woods during these bad nights, etc. I’ve met several people like this. Low self-worth leads to either lies to get compassion, or lies to elevate themselves to a false status, hoping you’ll love them with the beatific form of love.

I at one time had self-confidence issues. When I see this in others, and they lie to me, or make up stories, I always want to hug them and tell them, “You don’t have to lie to me. I like you how you are.” It seems people are most compassionate about things they once suffered themselves, but this is probably only because they have a more intricate understanding of it all than someone who doesn’t.

At church, I run the sound board. One guy came to church, apparently an ex-sound man. He kept telling me about all the big bands he’d ran sound for, and how he knew all these rock-stars. I really didn’t believe him though, he seemed like a guy with confidence issues. His son definitely had them. His son would always tell about some crazy thing he did. Him and his friends did the craziest thing over the weekend! Sometimes this really happens, but when people’s only conversation is about something “crazy” they did, they really are just insecure, and have confidence issues. They’re worried you won’t like them if they come across as boring.

Also, to speak more on this subject. People with self-confidence issues also do not want to be figured out. They don’t want you to see things from their perspective, because then you’d see that things aren’t really as bad as they want you to believe. Remember, they have their false stories to keep up, and to figure out what they really are is their ultimate fear. That’s their only source of love and attention in this life.

They are the greatest antagonists to any form of knowledge of people. Worst of all they hate the concept of stereotypes. Every forum and message-board where they gather has a long discussion thread about how the human mind is way too deep to figure out. It’s impossible. Why try? (I don’t say this to say that stereotyping is a good thing, I only say this to show how utterly repulsed they are by it, and how they have the extreme opposite view that they could never be figured out (a cover for their own fears)).

To try to seek love through compassion doesn’t come without its consequences. You’ll have to live with the continual fear others will figure you out. And this fear seems to get very great sometimes.

Talking to some people, I’ve seen myself starting to direct the conversation toward certain things about their life. I could tell I was lifting a veil to something they really didn’t want me to see. They’re in the awkward position. “If there’s nothing to hide, I can’t let on like anythings wrong.” So they get nervous and fidgety. They try to violently change topics, or sometimes their mind just seems to go blank. They want to jump up, and tackle you and push you as far away from that veil as possible, but yet, that’d give them away as well. That’d draw even more suspicion. So everytime they give you a tour of their life, they are in continual apprehension and fear. Always rushing you hurriedly through certain portions of the the house, then taking you to some falsely set up room they want you to stay in.

It’s hard to romantically love someone like this. You want to get to know them, and become one and a couple with them, but they can never let you. These people are bound to be without true love from another person, unless they can finally trust someone to lift their veils. Yet the more lies they have, the more difficult this will be for them. When someone’s addicted to compassion, they only become more isolated. They want love more than anyone. Oh how they wish someone knew all about their deception, they could get some help in life. But they first have to start being truthful.

So as for compassion, we see we can give it to people, but that it is a dangerous thing as well. It’s not much different than a drug, which destroys the person you give it to. It comes to where it takes more and more of it to satisfy them, so the stories get crazier and crazier. People start to become sceptical, so the intensity of the false stories must now increase. Instead of progressing and getting better, the person gets worse and worse hoping they’ll draw more compassion. Their value structure gets all out of balance, loving the bad things that happen to them (source of attention), and not focusing on improvement. These people are very excited when something bad happens to them, and they rush out of their home with joy to tell everyone. Also, this drives people away because everyone catches on to them. The one who feeds off compassion lives like a virus, always killing their host through depression. Their relationships all end in death and termination, mostly in the form of avoidance.

Strangely within their own circles, when a group of those addicted to compassion come together, they all seem immune to the virus. A normal man or woman comes into contact with them, gives all his compassion away, they leave him depressed, then he leaves feeling horrible and wanting to avoid them all. But when two or more compassion addicts compare sad stories, they all seem to unconsciously know what’s going on. Their immunity seems to be, “Oh, that’s your story? Well take a look at mine!” Then they make up a much worse story. And the battle as to whose imagination can create the worst and most sad tale ensues. This dynamic is kind of like the famous, rich, beauty queen complaining her life is bad to a struggling college girl, working two jobs, and going to school full time. The beauty queen says, “Oh oh! *waves her hand* Hunky celebrity won’t make love to me three times a day! Oh oh!” It’s hard to have compassion when you’re in a much worse position yourself.

There’s no end to this if you let it get out of hand. Simply work on building up their self-confidence by complimenting them, and showing them that you admire them. When I say admire them, I really do mean admire them. Not fake that you like them, but say things you genuinely admire about them, even if they’re small things. I tend to ignore the stories I know are fake, then compliment them on something much smaller that’s geniune. Hopefully you can get the snow-ball rolling this way, and help them find that people can like them when they’re geniune, and don’t have to make up stories to be accepted and loved. Their eyes seem to shine bright when they receive a small geniune compliment, as they find it’s much greater than all the compassion they’ve received for their lies.

So now I think we’re now in a position to where we can finally conclude the answer to our first question. Does a decision have to be motivated by something, or can decisions be made without motivation? The answer? The only reason this question was every brought up was because people are not good enough to be loved by someone they want to be loved by. When it comes to asking whether we can love ugly inanimate things, there is no reason why we should care. Why should we spend our thought processes debating whether a man can be attracted to a rotten apple? Nobody cares. People only care about this issue because they want some form of relationship with another person, yet they cannot get it because they are not good enough at the time when they desire the thing in question.

People don’t seem to get offended if you prefer one house over another house, unless it somehow relates back to them, telling them they’re not all they should be. People don’t care if you don’t like a specific food dish, unless they are the ones who prepared it. People don’t care if you like a painting unless they’re the ones who painted it (or that painting somehow defines who they are, which makes insulting the painting insulting them).

So can a person love another person, when everything about the other person is nasty and less than their ideals? We saw that they can love the good aspects, and as for the ugly aspects, only have compassion on what’s less than what they believe to be ideal. We saw that compassion is love of what’s ugly, mainly because you are able to place yourself in the shoes of the other person, and see things from their angle.

We saw that compassion can have a negative influence, and must given with care, especially when given to those with low self-confidence and self-worth. These people are especially vulnerable to compassion addiction, which modifies the addicts value structure, and sends them in the wrong direction, which only leads to isolation, deceit, and fear. They have very little experience of being genuinely loved, so they resort to compassion addiction, mainly through poor reinforcement. The cure is simply to help the addict by building confidence through geninue compliments, and giving them a taste of true love that is genuine.

This discussion has covered around half of the issues surrounding the motivations of decisions. People really care about motivations of their decisions for two reasons: 1) They don’t or do love things when they think they should or shouldn’t love them, or 2) Wish to find a state of contentment, and wonder why they can’t let go of the things they desire (this is probably the same issue as #1, just looked at from a different angle).

Issues for the first reason (which is what we’ve been discussing thus far), wanting to love or not love things you don’t or do love is rooted in ambivalent desires. You both want something, yet you don’t want something. This is the source of the conflict, and such conflicts cause guilt and anxiety. For example: You have sexual desires, yet maybe your religion prohibits these desires. You’re attracted to a co-worker, but have promised to stay in a committed relationship to another person. You want to spend your day doing one thing, but have made previous promises to someone else to commit to something you really don’t want to do (even though maybe you did when you made the promise at the time). This includes things like wanting to maintain a certain character and honor, yet you’re not exactly thrilled about maintaining such standards sometimes.

The only solution to these types of conflicts is to understand why you have this ambivalent structure going on in your mind, to lay everything out, analyze why you’ve made such commitments, and why you desire things, and try to organize your desires to a peaceful configuration.

If your religion is causing you perpetual mental conflicts, leaving you with continual guilt, then you have two options available to you. 1) Ask yourself if you have any control over why you desire the thing in question, or 2) analyze why you’ve chosen to adhere to the religion if it’s only bringing you misery. Lay out why you joined the religion, and why you want the things you do, and why you’re wanting to make a change in yourself to begin with. Though this technique is dangerous as well, because people are very quick and lazy to attribute that they have no control over why they want this, or why they want that, when they oftentimes do. When dealing with this, however, we get into deep realms such as the unconscious and repressed issues, where people start having motivations and impulses they’re not even conscious of. It gets incredibly hairy and complex very fast.

None of these are easy questions. People oftentimes don’t understand why they do the things they do. This very involved process of self-realization is a deep one, and one that takes a lifetime, and is probably never mastered. People adhere to religion for a lot of reasons, and I could easily write an entire entry on that subject alone and barely scratch the surface. Psychology and motivation is a deep deep subject matter.

Will power is required whenever you have such ambivalent desires. There is a girl I know, whom I greatly admire. She has a very high honor code and values, but sometimes I see her struggle keeping her values because she gets tired of being so nice and good to people who annoy her. It would be worthwhile taking a short discussion into will-power, since it directly relates to decisions.

In this girl’s case, whenever she is feeling strong, she can keep up her values and be nice to people. But whenever life events start happening to her, and everything becomes too much, she begins to snap. She then starts to bite, is irritable, and at times, is all out mean. You see in her a seesaw of kindness, coming in and out, going up then down, in her dealings of others.

This brings up an important question as to who this girl “really is”. Is she a mean person, or is she a nice person? If we were to shallowly judge her based on our experiences of her, with no insights into the mind, she would be both. She’d be “moody”. One of those girls you just “never know” with. But really, such distinctions are too vague and won’t help us. I suppose we could say she’s trying to be nice, but isn’t always capable of delivering.

So it seems she has the best intentions in the world, but there is some sort of emotional leak somewhere in her system. Certain good events happening to her seem to charge her up, but then she tends to slowly drain over time, hoping to make it to the next emotional gas station to charge her back up, to give her strength to deal with tomorrow.

No need to pick on her specifically, as this is the story of all of us. We all seem to have things we dislike but are forced into, which drain us, and things we love, which give us new strength and hope for tomorrow.

I will say this though. Some people seem to have much better systems to deal with emotional energy than others. I’ve seen some people who have much worse circumstances, yet are far more happy. Then there are others who have much better circumstances, yet are very unhappy. Celebrities go insane, and even commit suicide, with millions of dollars in the bank, good looks, fame, and loved by millions of people. Then there are monks, living in poverty, eating beans and rice, over in Buddhist temples in India, who greet you with a smile, and will tell you how wonderful life is, as you sit down with them out in the open air.

I know those are vague generalizations. Some celebrities are happy, and some monks aren’t happy. The point I was making however is that things and circumstances do not seem to be the determinant factor as to this psychological emotional system. As Jesus said, “Life does not consist in the abundance of the things you possess.” As Paul said to Timothy, “Godliness with contentment is great gain.” As the great sages of old seem to tell us, “Peace is not dependent on circumstance.” Gandhi said, “Each one has to find his peace from within.” Gandhi also said, “Freedom and slavery are mental states.” Since we’re dealing with decisions, and decisions require freedom to make the decision, it is essential we understand these things.

Will power, and control are important subjects. Whenever we use the word ‘control’, you have to be trying to keep control of something. In most people’s cases, they are wrestling within their own mind and desires. This is the main source of their drain. I think it was Bertrand Russell who said there was nothing so exhausting as indecision. It’s like a big game of tug of war, with you pulling both sides. Then you just fall down from exhaustion.

The tug of war analogy is quite a good one. If you could imagine all of your desires tied together in a network of ropes, you’d get what I’m saying. Sometimes you’ll try to go for something, but then other forces inside of you will say, “Whooa hoo hoo buddy. Hold up. We’re not going anywhere.” One group of your desires try to stay put, while another starts pulling trying to get their way. And as this war for what direction the mind, and ultimately the body following, seems to go is determined by you, the commander, who is in control of energy invested in each of the pullers. But there is a third group of pullers who also have strings tied to them, but they are pulling from a black hole. These are unconscious desires. You feel their tug, but do not see them. You do not have control of them while they are in the invisible black hole, but oftentimes they are very strong pullers and can have a strong influence on the mind. Other times, they’re quite weak and have little influence. You do see the rope going into the black hole, however. You simply fear going into the black hole. It’s a scary looking portal. In order to get control of their tugs as well, you have to follow the rope you see them tugging into the black hole, and pull them back out and back into sight. But once you confront them, they are once again back and ready for command.

This tug of war, network of ropes scenario, is what will power is. It is you, standing as commander, being able to invest different amounts of energy into different desires and then your body and life move based on that energy investment decision. This is also what value is. Value is invested energy into things of the mind.

If you do not have an orderly mind, and do not thoroughly understand this process, your life and mental energy will be spent fighting yourself. This is the nature of indecision. Indecision is not so much not being able to make a decision. Indecision is not being able to decide between two different desires. If there were no conflict, there’d simply be the decision. All forms of indecision come from conflicting desires.

Now to go back to our example of the girl who falters when life becomes hard on her. Her values and high codes of honor are posts she drives into the ground of her mind. But, like any pole, they can only take so much of a tug before they are uprooted. Now a lot of other desires in her mind are networked to the same mental network as this pole. They look at the pole, urinate on it, spit on it, and laugh at it. They say to her, “Why are you doing this? You hate these poles!” Then she also says, “No, I won’t listen to you. I will be a good person.” So, she creates a fractured self-dynamic. She is both the pole, and the hater of the pole. But sometimes life events start demanding things from her, and the poles get in the way. As commander, more energy is invested in the pole-haters, and they rip the pole out of the ground. This of course causes her pain, but circumstances demanded it. She had to react to what was going on, and get something done. Something had to be pushed out of the way, and in many circumstances, it is her values.

This happens to people who promise too much. They promise this person this, and that person that. They work this job, they’re going to school, they also have this this and that personal goal. Then everything begins to conflict. One person is demanding fulfillment on one promise, yet the job says, “Now I need you.” Now comes the indecision… Do I uproot the pole of, “Keeping my word”, or do I say, “I have to make money to survive.” The pole-haters are the “I have to make money to survive.” The pole-haters do not always hate the pole. They only hate the pole when it gets in the way. They stare back at her and say, “We can’t both do this job, yet keep this word. They dangle from the pole, hanging there, saying, ‘I cannot reach the ordered destination.'” The pole doesn’t budge, and the job-puller pulls with all his might against the pole. The two sit there in indecision, until she makes the decision to uproot the pole, or not. And remember, all of this pulling is using up mental energy as we go.

Mental peace is not a “state of mind”, “flip of the switch” sort of thing. Mental peace is carefully calculating where to place your poles, and how to structure your mental network. Sometimes poles can keep you together when wild passions can come out of nowhere. Like a dog seeing a shiny car out of nowhere takes off at full-speed. He runs off as long as the rope’s slack allows, then BAM…Sorry bud, no furthur. You always have to have your poles or these desires will run all over sometimes, yet, you have to keep everything efficient and organized as well, with slack.

You will not have mental peace if you do not keep adequate slack. You can’t tie a dog on a one foot leash, and expect it to be happy. At the same time, they all can’t run wild either. Dogs are stupid. They’ll get too far away from home, starve, die, and get run-over. Following any passion to extremes will do this to you. An extreme passion is when there’s no rope tied up to this passion. It does whatever it wants to do. The art of setting proper rope-slack, which lets you fulfill the desire, but still keeps you out of trouble, is temperance.

But just as dogs get all tied up on their leashes, so do desires. That’s what self-searching and studying are all about. It gets to be a tangled mess of ropes, all knotted up. You have to get in there, take responsibility and say, “I didn’t manage myself well.” Untie the knots, rearrange your poles, and ropes, and desires, and set off again. Relieve yourself of commitments that cannot co-exist, restructure yourself, and try again. People normally do this with mental reflection and describe it by saying something like, “I got some straightening out to do.” As we can see, it’s a very good description of the process too.

This girl who has this seesaw emotional behavior, she keeps putting her poles back where they were before, and keeping her desires similar. Einstein said to keeping doing the same thing, yet expect a different result, is insanity. This oftentimes happens however, because people view right, wrong, and ethics as absolute (pole setting), and they do not believe they can choose what they desire. But when you view your poles “right/wrong/ethics/etc” as absolutes, the same for everyone, you somewhat miss the point. If you do not understand the REASONS why the poles should be placed there, you won’t understand why things aren’t working for you. When you read a book like the Bible, I’m not going to say the ethics being taught are wrong. But it’s one of those things where if you’re going to set your poles here, you’re also going to have to align your energy investment into desires the way the Bible says to. If you try to set down your poles one way, but do not also strive for contement, and valuation of different things, your poles will be ripped up every single time, over and over again. You will keep failing, and causing yourself pain, over and over.

This is why I oftentimes tell people that “half-assing” religion is more harmful than it is good. The sages teach good mental configurations, but then you go off, setting your poles here, then investing wrong amounts of value into the wrong things, don’t blame the system for not working. You’d oftentimes been better off without it. But this is how the majority of society is structured. Old religious underpinnings are widespread and everywhere, yet people also don’t follow most of what the sages taught.

Before we leave the subject of pole setting, it’d be worthwhile to speak on prejudices. Decision making, and progress, is oftentimes hindedered greatly by prejudices. Well what is a prejudice?

A prejudice is very similar to indecision, but instead of two forces equally pulling on each other, it ends up that the poles are much stronger and the person does not move. Take for instance, trying to convert a religious person over to a scientific point of view as to creation and the origin of life.

You can argue with such people all day long. You can have iron-clad arguments, proof, and every form of evidence imaginable, yet oftentimes the religious person seems blindly to ignore this, and act like, “what does that matter?” This is an example of a prejudice. When someone blindly refuses to look at evidence, and believes things which aren’t rational, there are other reasons the person believes the things in question.

Take my family for instance. My father is a pastor of a church, and the church body is all friends of the family. Say you were to approach my father with the doctrine of evolution, and say you presented him with so much proof that the passages in Genesis are ridiculous. Regardless however, you’d probably find my father not budge in his beliefs. Why is that? There’s all kinds of other things holding him to his beliefs, not just that one thing you disproved.

If you were to take an independent college student, with an open-mind, and present the argument to him, chances are he’d take in this view as his own. Why can he take it in so easily, yet my father, avoid it? Well the college student can take on the new view with no loss or consequences.

If my father were to take on the view of evolution, first off he’d have to recant all he’s been teaching for over 30 years as a pastor. Second all of his friends and family would go into a turmoil. Thirdly a great many people look up to him as a holy man, a teacher of the word of God. Basically asking him to abandon his religious viewpoint is like asking, “Ok, scrap everything and everyone you love, and start completely over.” That’s not easy for a person who is over 50 years old to do. Even if he was convinced that God was a fiction invented by man, and that evolution was the key to our origin, he’d still have great difficulty taking on the view. The college student can take on the view, and little to nothing of his life changes. These sorts of dynamics are why prejudices exist.

Consciously or even unconsciously, people see the consequences of the view you’re advocating against their prejudice, and the reason they’re ignoring you is not because your argument was not better, but that they don’t want to see what it is you’re trying to show them. If you’re going to try to work with a person with a prejudice, you’re going to have to tackle the other reasons the person does not want to look at what you’re saying.

Now most people understand the dynamic of setting poles. People understand boundaries and ethics. They understand trying to control themselves. They know all about tieing ropes, and feeling the tugs of passions. Now we get another issue which most do not understand: How to control the energy distribution of desires. This is the subject which is a lot newer to me in my philosophical studies.

This will also be the answer to understanding attraction to things, which is what we were discussing earlier. We will also get to the dynamic that was taking place in Greg, not being attracted to the girls he was in complete control over.

Now most people feel that it is impossible to control what it is you desire. A man falls in love with his co-worker, and tells the psychologist, “I hate that she is so attractive. She constantly trys to seduce me to cheat on my wife. I can’t help but want her. To top it all off, my wife does not please me at home. In fact, we’ve been fighting lately.” Another person eats potato chips and thinks, “These are the best things ever.” Another person loves a particular band’s music. Is it possible for them not to desire these things? If so, how can we remove the energy and attraction to these things, and direct them toward something else instead?

I can speak from experience on these issues (for the women example I’m simply meaning experiencing attraction to women), and say for certain that attraction can indeed be redirected in many instances, possibly all. You can actually completely change your mind toward these things. How is this possible? With knowledge.

Knowledge will curb you desires because the same object’s appearance will change based on what eyes you’re using to look at it. We’ll cover the potato chips example first.

I used to love Pringles chips, and Doritos chips. I thought they were wonderful. Now I will not touch them, nor am I tempted to do so. You may think, “What? You cannot program how good they taste in your mouth, and tell yourself, ‘No that doesn’t taste good!'”. I will concede that point, no I cannot, yet I can through knowledge see future ‘dread’ and negative consequences to actions.

With the chips, I learned that many chips contain MSG (Monosodium glutamate) within them, which not only screws with your heart, but also is a cancer causing agent. It’s not much different than when people see a potato chip dropped onto a dirty floor, with roaches crawling around, then picks it back up and hands it to you to eat. Somehow the attraction to the object is now gone. Knowing there’s sprinkles of deadly poison all over the object has a nice way of taking all desire for the object away.

Let’s talk about desire to listen to music. I used to listen to a great deal of music, of many different styles. Now over the years I have studied a great deal of philosophy and psychology, and my views as to what music I care to listen to has changed greatly. As my knowledge grew, I started to avoid listening to a great deal of songs. Why is this? Their music became “childish” to me, and low in quality lyrically. Many of the lyrics came off to me as rather pathetic. Instead of love and passion for the songs, it was instead replaced with compassion for the poor bands, whose psychological conditions I now understood. It’s hard to read children’s books when you’ve discovered Dostoevsky, Joyce, and Tolstoy.

Music lyrics will be appealing or unappealing based on the mood you’re in, and whether or not they hold affinity to the ideals you hold. We could simply say affinity for ideals because all a bad or good mood does to you is reinvest energies into different aspects of your mind. If the music’s tone and lyrics resonate similarly to what mood and views you’re holding at the time, you’ll find it appealing. This is simply because there is no conflict. It is only intensifying your current mood. If you’re in a bad mood, hearing Sinatra’s “Fly Me To The Moon” is going to be like dumping a few bags of ice into your warm bath-water. Depressing music can make you more depressed, and happy music can make you in an even better mood than you were already in, but it’s rare that people can take the clash of the two when the song’s mood does not match their own.

When my religious views changed, listening to Christian praise and worship music, which I used to really get into, became bothersome and annoying.

The last example of attraction to women, I can speak on as well. Now when it comes to sexual attraction, I don’t completely understand every factor there is to that. I myself am most attracted to smaller girls. A small girl, with a pretty face. *mmm*. 🙂 I do not completely understand why that appeals to me. I have some ideas why this may be the case, but we’ll save those for another time.

I know this isn’t all there is to the picture, because oftentimes people form sexual fetishes for various body parts, races, etc. Some guys really are into Japanese women. Some guys like large massive breasts. Some guys like short hair, others long hair. Some guys like me care most about a girl’s face, and like a smaller girl. Others its all about the body and its curves. I have studied in psychoanalyses the basics of a fetish, and have seen how past events come to form the fetish. I don’t think past events completely form our views of sexual attraction, however. I can tell you why a man is likely a foot fetishist, or why he is highly aroused when a girl treats him like a baby and puts him in a diaper (sexual regression), but I don’t think that covers everything there is about sexual arosal and attraction.

But similar to the potato chips example, if you know the girl has various STDs (sexually transmitted diseases), I think that will certainly hinder her appeal.

There is also another factor I’ve personally experienced with women. Attraction to them will be much less if you have other things you care a lot more about. I’ve spoken about this a lot in my other journal entries. If you’re busy doing other things in life, which are a much higher priority to you to accomplish, when an attractive woman comes on to you, you will be less attracted to her than another man, actively pursuing a relationship.

With me, I would encounter cute girls interested in me, but I had other things on my mind. In my mind, I viewed the girl as something that would get in the way, and was something I could come back to later. In these cases, women lose a great deal of their appeal.

In all these cases you find one common thread among them – anxiety or dread of something bad you’re expecting to happen. As for the potato chips, you find them harmful to your health. In the music example, you find it a waste of your time, and also possibly even pollution for your mind. As for the women, you may view them as a hinderance of you getting something you’d much rather have instead.

So we can see that desires are something in which a person is partially in control over. It seems the mind takes two factors into account when evaluating a desire. First off, how much pleasure do you believe you’ll receive from the experience, and secondly, how much dread does the mind expect from this experience. If you know a good tasting potato chip is going to make you dreadfully sick, you’ll stay clear of it, unless you desire to be sick for some neurotic reason (expiation for sin or something).

Old people begin to more highly value their health over time, and view good health as greater than experiences. They begin to eat bran-flakes in the morning, because they’d rather feel good throughout the day, than have the short-lived experience of eating high fat eggs and pancakes, which leave them drowsy, and plug them up.

A religious man curbs his desires when his beliefs cause him to value a relationship with God (even if it may be only imaginary) over other sensual pleasures.

I’d like to lay stress on the fact of EXPECTING DREAD. I want to stress the EXPECTING aspect. A thing can cause anxiety in someone, and be completely unappealing to someone, even if it is completely harmless to them in reality. In the saint example stressed earlier, who felt all kinds of guilt for eating the last piece of chicken, had built a complex religious view to where she believed that if she ate this last piece of chicken, her relationship with God would be severed, and since this is what she valued more than anything, eating that chicken made her feel terribly awful. Her best friend, God, was sitting over her shoulder saying, “How could you! I’m so hurt! Why would you hurt me so!?”

So your beliefs as to the negative consequences of your actions is how you control your desires. In fact, technically there is no difference between these ‘poles’ we’ve been talking about, and desires. Really a pole is just a desire to stay away from something. In the ultimate sense, a desire is a pull in a certain direction.

If I could use a physics analogy, desires are like unit vectors, pointing in a direction, but have a magnitude of only 1. All extra subsequent magnitude is either added by the mind, or by instinctive impulses.

So mental peace is contingent upon knowledge. Knowledge will guide you toward what you value, and what to avoid. As I’ve stressed over and over in many other journal entries, what you value and pursue, and what you avoid, is everything. What you spend your time developing, and what things you stay away from, will completely dictate where you life takes you.

Before reaching our final conclusions, let’s ask ourselves what has happened in Greg’s situation. In quick review, he has immense success with women, but they now bore him. He knows how to control their emotions, and there is no mystery to any of it. They love him, but he thinks it’s all mechanical, so it bores him.

We stated earlier that knowledge combined with selfishness is a bad combination. The self, to assert free-will requires resistance. A desire to change something from one state, to another. He has now reached a state where there is little resistance when he tries things, therefore little effort exerted by his self. There is no challenge, so he is bored.

His solution will not be found in furthur, deeper knowledge of women. That will only make it more boring. If he wishes to pursue the self, then he will simply have to move onto something else after he has mastered relationships with women. Maybe he should get into physics, or mathematics, or something very intricate, which can keep his mind entertained.

His other option is to let go of self in some way. He can then move toward giving to the other person. But this view will lead ultimately to the same problem as before, once the girl has reached the same level as him. She will become bored of his knowledge, as he has no more to give her. And you cannot give to a person, when they have no need of what you have to give.

Serving others breaks down to imparting your knowledge to the next generation. As wonderful as it sounds, the teaching of the same thing over and over can also be monotonous. Boringly seducing women, or boringly teaching the same subjects over and over to new people, as far as the self is concerned, there will be no difference.

People seem to need resistance to stay alive. Something new and challenging to keep them going. I guess he’ll have to find a girl who wants to walk the same path as him studying some indepth subject, or else he’s going to always be terribly bored himself, and with her.

Or for kicks, maybe he should date a completely insane woman, and work on seducing her? LOL. Strangely, I love psychology so much, that appeals to me, though unfortunately as I figured her out, I would lose my love for her, which is the opposite of how it should work.

I think we’re finally ready to conclude this beast of an entry. Throughout this entire discussion I’ve only tried to show what can keep a person from making a decision. Nobody can make a decision for you, including me. My goals of this entire talk have only been to show you how it all works, and then hand responsibility back to you.

We concluded several main points:
1. People only care about the motivations of decisions because of social relationships. People want to form relationships with each other, yet wonder why it doesn’t work out.
2. People do not care about motivations to decisions regarding likes and dislikes of inanimate things unless it somehow involves them or someone they love.
3. Indecision, guilt, and anxiety are all caused by ambivalent desires pulling on each other in a big tug-of-war battle. Mental conflicts ensue when two desires do not go together.
4. What you desire can be controlled with knowledge of the negative consequences of your actions. (dread of future pain)
5. Mental peace is not light-switch flipping state of mind, but an orderly mental configuration of desires not conflicting and under proper control.
6. Prejudices are complex mental networks. If you’re going to persuade someone with a prejudice, you’re going to have to do a lot of work on everything attached to the prejudice as well.
7. Compassion is love of the ugly aspects of people, or the ugly things they create.
8. Be careful giving compassion to those with self-confidence issues. They are particularly vulnerable to being a compassion addict because they have never experienced geniune love, and compassion is the best thing they’ve experienced. Their stories are often made-up to get attention, and it does them more harm than good playing along.
9. Compassion addicts fear being found out, which causes anxiety, fear, and isolation in them. You cannot truly have a romantic love relationship with them as long as they’re in this state.
10. Compassion addiction inverts a person’s value structure to love the bad events that happen to them, in order to get compassion from others.

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