This page contains my fun quotes. The character I’m now using with them is called Telebot. I created Telebot a long time ago – I can’t even remember why – and he/she/it has stuck around and become a fond character. Many of these quotes came out of a science-fiction novella I wrote, many moons ago. That novella has morphed into something else but I didn’t want to lose the ideas, so here they are. They’re meant to be funny as well as thought-provoking (at least, that’s the plan). I’ll be tweeting them as they come out, at @scipsiguy. This page will contain them all, as well as an explanation of each one. As far as I know, they’re all my own work.
I’ll gradually be replacing the original character for these. quotes, Astro Guru, with Telebot. Astro Guru was fun but he doesn’t fit the style of this website. I also prefer an androgynous, non-human character to illustrate the quotes. I enjoy a non-human character talking about the human condition; it seems more objective and, as I say, I like Telebot. 🙂
#1: Being free is like wild game; tough and rare.
Today’s Scarf Guru quote draws upon a thought I’ve had for a while, that freedom isn’t some lovely thing that brings relaxations and joy. Instead, freedom is something that is tough to achieve and a challenge to maintain. Few people genuinely find freedom, because slavery, either physically or mentally, is, in many ways, a far easier existence. It is a sad truth that many people, after being freed as slaves, return to their old masters. They do it because they can’t handle the uncertainty and the self-reliance needed to be free. There is also the problem of being mentally enslaved, being mind-controlled or indoctrinated. This harder for the person to spot than a chain around their ankle. They can be convinced that their view of reality is normal – the way things are – even though it is a lie, a fabrication designed to restrict and control them. This situation is often talked about with reference to cults, but as I explain in my article domestic violence, religion, and civilisation, the problem is much more widespread.
#2: With our delusions, we make the world.
Today’s Astro Guru quote (#2) is a play on the Buddhist idea, ‘with our thoughts, we make the world.’ I believe the Buddhist idea is true, both spiritually and scientifically. For more info on that, check out my book Solving Reality. The Astro Guru quote makes a dig at our propensity for believing all sorts of rubbish, and then mentally distorting what we see to fit with that erroneous view. D’oh! For examples of that trend, check out my article on twelve famous psychology experiments.
#3: If you hate it, you’ll only get it again.
This is an interesting idea that ties into deep ideas about why we live lives at all. As far as I can work out, we live our lives in order to face challenges and thereby improve as spiritual individuals. Part of that personal development involves returning hate with love, and embracing difficulty; it’s not an easy task! This challenge, of facing persecution, aggression and other negative behaviour, and responding with compassion, is very difficult, but we have to do it to progress. If we instead react with anger, violence, vengeance, condemnation and other negative behaviour, we’ve sunk down again, spiritually. If that happens, then we have to do another life, like it, again. We have to keep taking on that challenge, like someone who has to keep going around an obstacle course until they complete it. Therefore, if you start to hate anything, instead of viewing it with compassion, then you’ve failed; you will just get it again.
#4: Truth is repetition.
This quote is cryptic but I do have an explanation for it. Nowadays, there’s a lot of talk, and argument, about what is true and what isn’t true. Ultimately, it’s very difficult to know what is true unless you see it in front of your eyes, but in our modern, technological age, even that’s not reliable. How can we establish what is true, especially about things that people can’t see in front of them, with certainty? The way our forebears dealt with this problem was by developing science, or more particularly, the scientific method. A core feature of the scientific method is that a phenomenon is shown, through testing, to be reproducible; in other words, that it happens every time. Once that’s established, then the scientist can come up with a theory about why that phenomenon happens. But fundamentally the core of the truth lies in the repetition.
This idea, that truth is repetition, isn’t just about science. At the moment, we have politicians who say one thing and then a month later, they say the opposite. They are also completely unconcerned about their complete change of view. This, unfortunately, is part of sociopathic behaviour. Sociopaths have little interest in the past, due to their poor levels of imagination and mental activity. They are also incapable of apologising for these complete turnarounds, or statements that aren’t even logical, as they feel they can say whatever they like, whenever they like, whatever that may be. They are hopeless at a consistent message.
There is also a dark, flip-side to ‘truth is repetition’. Some people adopt the approach that if they say something enough times, it must be true. Also, there’s the belief that if enough people say the same thing, it must be true. These are both wrong. They are paths to ignorance, prejudice and institutionalised lies. Science was developed to stop such an approach. Therefore ‘truth is repetition’ is both a statement of truth and a perennial warning.
#5: Life is a miracle. Death is science.
This quote naturally follows one made by Albert Einstein: ‘There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as if everything is.’ Einstein’s idea touched upon a key aspect of science. According to thermodynamics, our entire universe should be nothing more than a chaotic soup of fundamental particle, due to the disordering effects of entropy. Instead, our universe is ordered and filled with highly-complex living things, like us. This. from an orthodox scientific view, is effectively impossible; it’s a miracle. In comparison, the decay and death of things does fit with the orthodox scientific view, hence my quote. Clearly, something is seriously wrong with our orthodox scientific view, as it’s saying that no life should exist. In my book Solving Reality, I explain that this massive flaw is present because our scientific establishment keeps insisting that only physical things exist. A century ago, many brilliant physicists saw differently, and showed what view did work. Sadly, their insights were ignored. It’s high time they were accepted.
#6: Time flies, and lands badly.
This quote is fun but also touches upon a sobering idea. Time can pass very quickly and effortlessly for us, especially when we’re young. The problem is, it can pass too easily. It’s very easy for many of us to procrastinate, to put off difficult decisions, or ignore worrying trends, until the opportunity has gone, or the problem is too large for us to overcome. This is a perennial issue and it may not even go away after we die. Many people who have suffered Near Death Experiences, when a person temporarily ‘dies’ and leaves their body, report that they reflected on their lives during that out-of-body experience. When they reviewed their lives from a distance, so to speak, they were extremely unhappy at how little use they’d made of their time, and their opportunities. Therefore, if we don’t want time to ‘land badly’, it’s definitely recommended that we ‘seize the day’, whenever we can.
#7: Now is mostly ‘ow!’.
This quote plays on a perennial philosophical puzzle. If the universe is supposed to have been created by a loving god, then why are our lives filled with heartache, random disasters and other forms of suffering? The philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer said this on the subject: “There are two things which make it impossible to believe that this world is the successful work of an all-wise, all-good, and, at the same time, all-powerful Being; firstly, the misery which abounds in it everywhere; and secondly, the obvious imperfection of its highest product, man, who is a burlesque of what he should be.” Fortunately, there is a solution to this dark puzzle. None of us are perfect beings but we want to improve. To do that, we need difficult, challenging lives in order to become better and in order to prove to ourselves that we have the right qualities. We therefore need Now to be mostly ‘ow!’ so we can become the people we want to be… but it still hurts!
#8: We don’t make love, we just swap lust.
This quote is fun but it’s also partly true. Science shows us that having sex does create a closer emotional bond between people, but it has nothing to do with love. Love is a selfless activity that comes from the soul. Desire, by comparison, comes from the brain, from our animal selves. Romantic love is created by the brain so that we’ll mate with a genetically-strong partner. This biological mechanism works for around two to seven years, according to the research, after which it dies away, thus explaining the ‘seven-year itch’. Our biology isn’t too concerned about that fade-out as, by that time, it assumes that we’ll have produced babies. Having babies triggers more biological-emotion mechanisms, such as oxytocin release, and the cycle continues. I think the biggest thing I’ve done in my life, in terms of making love, was apologising to a woman, even though I didn’t believe I’d done wrong, because my action had upset her. Having said that, swapping lust is a lot of fun! 😉
#9: Space is like promises, mostly empty.
This quote is a topical one. The current leaders of Britain and the United States are not doing a good job of sticking with their promises, or making accurate statements. This may reflect a more general problem with humanity, in that we can talk very easily but we are not good at following through with what we said, since that requires much more effort. Another quote from the Astro Guru, along these lines, is ‘pay a cent for everything you say and receive a dollar for everything you do.’ It’s too long for these twitter cards, but the idea is the same. Fortunately, there have been cultures in history where people honoured what they said, and didn’t take promises lightly. Hopefully, we can return to such a state soon.
#10: ‘There is no good or bad, only goäd.’
This quote is silly, but also challenging. Most of us like to think that there are good and bad things in the world. The problem with this view is that it divides the world into two groups, intrinsically good people and intrinsically bad ones. Eventually, the bad people will be punished for their wickedness by God, or some other Judging Deity. But no one is perfect in this world. Therefore, if we follow this ‘badness logic’, then we’re all bad to some degree. Therefore, we’re all in the fundamentally bad group. The ‘bad category’ now encompasses everyone. This is a deeply negative idea and it’s often used by abusive controllers to make their victims think they’re fundamentally flawed, as can be seen in certain religions or cults. If we instead take the opposite view, that all people are fundamentally good but they are sick to some degree, because of various reasons, then no one is bad. There is just various degrees of sickness. Everyone is ill, to some degree, and they need compassion and help, so they can get better, hence goäd. It’s also a fun word! 🙂
#11: ‘When we fall in love, we hit the ground eventually.’
Falling in love is often portrayed as the most important moment in our lives, and yet it’s an animal-biological event. When someone talks about getting butterflies in their stomach, or being swept away, this is down to their brain. It has spotted that that person is an optimal mate, according to the person’s symmetry (genetic health), their smell (an indication of their immune system health) and other features. It has then flooded the person’s system with positive, psycho-active chemicals to make them excited every time they see that person. Our brains keep doing this for two-to-seven years, according to scientific research, at which point the effect wears out. This is the biological basis for the well-known ‘seven-year itch’. By that time, we should have produced offspring, at which point a new set of positive psycho-active chemicals are released, such as oxytocin. Therefore, biologically, the quote is accurate. The spiritual side is for another day…
#12: ‘No things outside can ever fill the holes inside.’
Most of these Astro Guru quotes are designed to be funny but sometimes, I stick a straight one in just because it seems important. Over the years (I’m now over 50), I’ve realised, thanks to times when I could buy a lot and times when I could only buy food and replacement clothing, that it really didn’t make much difference how much I had. As long as I had the basics, as an individual, I was fine. What was much more important was that I steered my life to a place where I was being the person I wanted to be, and doing the things I felt I should do. Once someone is in that place, then all that extra stuff is irrelevant. If someone isn’t in that place, then all that extra stuff won’t help them. They might have shiny and impressive things but those things can’t fill the holes inside. Erm, this is probably not the most popular Christmas message but there you go…
#13: ‘Violence isn’t the answer; it’s not even a question.’
After many years of thought, I’ve realised that violence comes from fear. It can also come from a person viewing the target of their violence as being inferior, a lesser being. If you overcome all fears, and regard all living things as kin, and deserving of help and compassion, and you realise that all negative behaviour is a sickness, not an evil. Once you understand that, you can’t be violent any more. Some people might respond to this by saying that you are vulnerable to violence if you behave this way but if you display no anger-fear-violence, you are much less likely to receive any. Also, death is just us leaving our bodies. I’d rather leave my body, and be happy with myself, than stay in my body and hate myself. Interestingly, many people who have had Near Death Experiences have retuned with a strong desire to not be violent. Several police officers and soldiers had to change career, as the idea of violence had become abhorrent to them. This is discussed in this Guardian article, What do Near Death Experiences mean, and why do they fascinate us?
#14: ‘We make our choices and we live with the consequences.’
Often, when I mention this idea to someone, they say it’s depressing. ‘That’s so horribly negative!’ was one reaction but this sentence doesn’t have to be negative. If we do the right thing, something that we’re proud of, something that helped other people, especially people we care about, then the consequences will be great. We will get to live with the positive effects of our choice. This sentence is therefore a test. If you find it depressing then perhaps you’re not making the right choices.
#15: ‘Everything is weird; it just looks normal.’
I’ve been writing a non-fiction, popular-science book called Solving Reality. the book endeavours to explain how our reality works and how it’s constructed. It does this by drawing upon insights gained by Nobel Prize winning physicists. They discovered that our minds must create reality in order for reality to work. This idea is very old, and is explained by ancient Hindu and Egyptian texts, but our modern, materialistic world has rejected it. Instead, we’re stuck in a materialistic mentality that’s destroying our planet’s environment. This is suicidal lunacy but everyone just continues with their day as if nothing’s wrong. Therefore, the universe is weird; it just looks normal. Our modern world is also crazy but everyone treats it as normal too. Hence the quote.