Monday, June 7, 2010

ADD is normal

Attention Deficit Disorder is absolutely endemic in the human population. Virtually no one seems to have the capacity to attend (that is what attention means) to any single thought for longer than about 3/5 of a second. And if one observes carefully it is apparent that the cause of the vast majority of "accidents" is split attention.

There is no such thing as multi-tasking, but rather rapid, sequential, partial single tasking. The attempt to multi-task results in attention first here then there then elsewhere and back to here, etc. While attention is elsewhere habit can function effectively in the interim provided the habit is strong enough. When the habit is not firmly established for the situation there is always the possibility of a lapse. In that lapse is where "accidents" happen - in the thoughtless void provided by lack of attention.

This is particularly true because the typical human tendency is to act before thinking based on habit and reaction. And if the habit is underdeveloped, the reaction will be at best ineffective, at worst dangerous. As children we were taught to STOP - LOOK - LISTEN before crossing the street. It seems that this is a habit that would be valuable to develop in every action - to live deliberately and thoughtfully as opposed to reactively and habitually.

Mind training, not drugs, is the only solution to ADD.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

We must get rid of God!

The single biggest source of conflict in the world today is God. Throughout history more people have been killed in the name of God than in all other wars put together. Perhaps if we get rid of God we would have less to fight about...NOT!

Before you jump to conclusions, I am NOT an atheist. I don't believe in Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and I don't believe in the same God they don't believe in, but there is a major difference: the true atheist is certain there is no God. I am not so sure and I do not know how they arrive at such certainty. Voltaire once said, "If God created us in his own image, we have more than reciprocated." Rousseau also is quoted as saying, “God created man in his own image. And man, being a gentleman, returned the favor.” It is this man-created, geopolitical god that is the troublesome one. As far back as written history goes, and likely before, the ancients believed in a god that would give them an advantage over their enemies and look after their crops. Each city-state of the ancient Middle East had its own god and the most powerful city-state must then have the most powerful god. When the ancient Israelites brought the concept of one god, the people from Egypt in trying to envisage and conceptualize this god, only had the image of Pharaoh to go by. Therefore the Judeo-Christian concept of God is Pharaoh elevated to a cloud. This is the god worshipped by the vast majority of so-called Christians today. The deeply ingrained habit of thinking of God as someone to slay one's enemies and protect one's crops continues to this day.

Perhaps most atheists are not truly atheists at all but anti-religionists. This I could share. Karl Marx observed that "religion is the opiate of the masses." Religion offers a mythical certainty in a life filled with uncertainty...BUT is it real? Or is it merely a mind-numbing analgesic for the pain and uncertainty of this life?