Thursday, November 5, 2009

Mini Blogs

Comments below are thoughtproducts that don't quite merit a full blog.


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  2. Similarly, you could be considered unlucky to be born outside the LDS church. Most LDS missionaries would tell you they wish more people cared about the truth and its pursuit, since the primary obstacle to the accomplishment of missionary objectives is apathy/complacency on the part of those the missionary desires to teach and baptize. Yet, there is a much lower burden expected of those born into the church- rather than an expectation to question everything one's been taught and to look outside one's faith and way one was raised and pay any price to find the truth, as LDS missionaries wish more would, those born in the church find themselves in the relatively comfortable position that they need merely conform with the social and religious scripts they're fed. This disparity of obligation (conform with what's familiar to you v. pay any price in personal change seeking in unfamiliar places, such as an unknown religion, for the truth) seems unfair.


    Yesterday I held up a poster reading "Free Hugs" in Brigham Square and the JFSB quad. I found what I would term the "capitalist" response surprising. One guy stationed himself next to me and started selling hugs for 25 cents, claiming that his hugs were longer and tighter. He didn't get any business. Many people asked me if I was doing it for a class or final. One fellow yelled over his shoulder that I should sell the hugs for 50 cents and that I'd get more that way.
    I guess it's hard for folks to observe a behavior without attributing a motive. Many people took it as I offered it, short and sweet, just because. I enjoyed it, because even those that didn't choose the hug usually smiled, and that's a great thing. Did I mention that I love hugs? Because I do.

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    Despite having an older laptop, I currently have 4 gigs of RAM (it came with one), Windows 7, and Windows 2010 Beta. I feel avant garde, riding the wave, cutting edge. The change in speed from 1 gig of RAM to 4, though my machine can only handle 3, has been phenomenal. Happy day, and thank you Christmas money!

  6. One theory out there is that men's primary interest in dating relationships is sex, whereas women's primary interest is emotional intimacy. Both genders are interested in both, but the priority level is disparate. If this theory is accurate, it evinces one reason why it rocks to be a girl (which I'm glad for, since there are 100's of reasons why it rocks to be a guy. I made a list of 5,032 such reasons last summer). That reason is that the LDS religion and society in general extols the emotional intimacy interest but denigrates the priority given to sex interest. Both priorities are equally natural to each gender, but the average woman is lucky enough to have her society and religion positively reinforce what is natural for her, whereas the man's pursuit of his natural interest is punished and stigmatized. Why valorize the one but vilify the other?

  7. This week at institute the teacher taught about goal setting for the whole hour. I talked with my friend the day after who commented that one doesn't feel the Spirit as much when learning skills rather than principles. I think I generally agree. I wonder: why is that? Why wouldn't the Spirit accompany learning true skills? What is it about methods that is not ratified by the Spirit as are doctrines? Hmm.

  8. In response to my "One theory out there..." note three comments above, I point out that I imply that both genders' pursuit of their primary objective is equally natural, which equality undercuts the basis for valorizing one pursuit while vilifying the other. This argument is half wrong, since, as I show in my "Playing God, Slippery Slopes, and the Fallacy of Naturalism" post a few days ago, the naturalness of a behavior is of no use in determining a behavior's worthiness of being judged better or worse. Therefore, though I was right that woman's pursuit of emotional intimacy shouldn't be valorized because of its naturalness, I was also wrong because I claimed that the naturalness of men's pursuit counters the conclusion of its moral wrongness. A more correct statement would be that naturalness or lack thereof doesn't move a moral judgment of men's pursuit of sex from its starting point toward either end of the rightness/wrongness spectrum. Therefore, my argument only holds if the extolling and denigrating of LDS culture either bases its judgments on 1) mistaken naturalness or 2) amoral criteria.

  9. A few days ago I noticed a girl holding and touching and getting close to and ga-gaing over an infant. I kind of laughed because of the image suggested by the comparison immediately below.

    Boy's reaction: physically attractive girl :: girl's reaction: infant (see references at bottom).

    Social acceptability: boy attending to naturally alluring object (NOT):: social acceptability of girl attending to her allurement.

    One more gender asymmetry of our zeitgeist.

    1) "Who looks at a baby in public"
    Ethology and Sociobiology
    Volume 1, Issue 1, October 1979, Pages 87-91

    2) "Pupil Size as Related to Interest Value of Visual Stimuli"
    Hess and Polt (1960)

  10. You first idea about how we hypocritically expect those not of our faith to be so devoutly seeking for truth...I am struck by it. So profound! Thus, I shall attempt to pursue truth more vehemently in the future.

    There were some lucky BYU students on campus on December 10, 2009 :).


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