A Radical Definition of Radical

In Short: Radical — to be radical means to oppose the orthodoxies of the times, be they religious, political, social, institutional, economic, etc.  One is more radical, the more fundamental and total the change for which they agitate. In more detail: Because the meaning of radical has been overdetermined, we have fallen prey to many … Continue reading

Festival Night

Note: These posts are not meant to be plot summaries, but commentaries. While we do not go out of our way to spoil, hints if not spoilers about later chapters and even books are occasionally discussed. We recommend reading this post after you have read the parts we are discussing. Mars has meant many things … Continue reading

Making sense of Occupy Wall Street

One of the criticisms I often hear regarding the Occupy movements is that it is unclear is to what they’re all about.  To help shed a little light, here’s a terrific interview with author and scholar, Chris Hedges, and Democracy Now host, Amy Goodman.

Tao 61

The ideal polity collects where rivers empty at the bottom of the world From this place emanates a powerful stillness: the female. Through stillness the female. Overcomes the ambitions of man. Yet, the female does so by yielding the high place. The path to lasting conquest is yielding. Therefore the large nation yields to the … Continue reading

Tao 46

Should Tao ever prevail as a form of governance, Order will emerge as a product of our natural inclinations. So long as Tao does not prevail, Order is premised on coercion. The challenge to Taoist governance is ambition. No greater threat than desire, No greater misfortune than discontent, No greater calamity than wanting and taking … Continue reading

The Debate over Wikileaks

With the most recent release of documents by Wikileaks, a wealth of cables between American embassies across the globe and the State Department, the limits of freedom of expression within the Western World, and in particular in the USA, are being put to the test. Here is a fairly recent interview with Julian Assange, defending … Continue reading

Us Now

As we tend to mention on this site quite frequently, modern communications are altering our ways of life in a variety of incredible ways. One thing we always try to focus on when we talk about this stuff is how new all this stuff is. In the grand scheme of things, all this wonderful, technological … Continue reading

The self-organizing system: An example

At a very blatant level, a level of details and specifics and focus, this video is about an innovative new way of education.  At a broader level h0wever, one that is concerned with looking for grand, over-arching patterns, the ideas here give insight into the potential for self-organizing systems. Sugata Mitra shows by example a … Continue reading

The Whiny Sage: A Note on the Translation of Tao 20

While we ended up being fairly happy with our translation of Chapter 20 of the Tao Te Ching, there were a few issues of interpretation that seem to be worth mentioning. Chapter 20 is pretty unique when compared to most other chapters. It is written in the first person and, at least in the three … Continue reading

A Definition of Anarchism

Anarchism is one of the most consistently misunderstood words in the English language. Even amongst those who would claim it as their guiding philosophy, there is much argument over what it actually is. To put it a little too simplistically, there are two ways of understanding Anarchism. The first — which is by far the … Continue reading