Emotion is the enemy

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by getbent, May 20, 2020.

  1. hepular

    hepular Tele-Meister

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    i study how people apply metaphors to make sense of stuff. Like, I spent one summer reading epic poems for the epic similes about super-power--only to confirm that they're all pretty boring before the discovery of steam and electric power. Here's the thing: if you went back to 1840 and told someone they were "wired" they would have no clue what you were talking about. Blowing your top (steam power), & a few electro-chemical concepts, they'd get (just btw, the gold-embroidered scarlet letter is an energy inducer-- a pickup & you can tell cuz Hawthorne goes out of his way to describe people sorta unconsciously arranging themselves around it like iron filings): but they're ALL models of what's happening.

    Not the real thing. & I've seen enough pictures of the inside of amps on this forum to tell you that even if you use the wiring metaphor, HOW the wiring was done also matters, & in a plastic (malleable) feedback-driven system what kind of information & the methods for processing that information also matter a lot. How we process and emerge from what happens to us--& given that we're social critters-what sort of messages we get about what matters--all of those individualize us.

    rambling, sorry, but I teach a lotta d3 college athletes who have been taught to value themselves almost completely in terms of sportsing. Pair that with 12 or so years of feeling like failures or worse in a classroom, & well . . . it can be tough for them.

     
  2. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    (WRT "expectations are premeditated resentments")

    Of course we don't carry out every plan we make in our heads, and we must expect things like the car to stop when we step on the brakes, or a check to come after we deliver services. Likewise we may expect our wife or husband to come home every night.
    I find the idea of unconditional love to be particularly ironic, since most of us expect things from those we love, and are hurt or angered when our loves let us down.

    More like living in expectations leads to resentments, because life is just not our delivery boy, no matter how much society may seem to tell us it is.
    So the idea is a concept, like you need to practice to develop skills, not a hard rule like those who don't practice all suck.

    Attachment and aversion are two basic human traits that are not really grounded in reality.
    We want the good and don't want the bad. And we tend to invest emotionally in outcomes we expect.
    But we really have little control over outcomes.

    An emotional investment in our expectation; that outcomes will deliver that Amazonian fulfillment?

    Where do attachment and aversion live?
    In the rational mind?
    Or in the emotions?

    I suppose an expectation that putting our hand on a hot stove will result in a burn lives in the rational mind, but as you said, "Depends on what I'm expecting". I'm talking about expectations tied to emotions, whether the cart is before or after the horse.

    I try to take beauty, joy, triumph etc where they come, rather than walk from one expectation to the next.
    I find it notable that when I expect an ice cream cone, I'm less open to a salad.

    Yet beauty and triumph barrages us all day every day, if we are open to it.
    To be bored or disappointed with life?
    Many are. How does that happen?
     
  3. getbent

    getbent Telefied Silver Supporter

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    that is a very cool thing to study on multiple fronts. It can be a hard thing for people to reimagine themselves... I think you'll help them with that! As great as sports can be for learning about yourself, they are nowhere near enough to discovering a life of the mind and the examination of a life.
     
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  4. RhinestoneStrat

    RhinestoneStrat Tele-Meister

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    Machete!:eek:

    [​IMG]
     
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  5. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Anger is an energy !

     
  6. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    The poisoning of a mind is not manifested by what goes in--but by what comes out.

    Nobody that is sane can make the excuse they have no control over their actions. Do it one too many times, and it becomes a habit and a crutch for weakness of will.
     
  7. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    DANG, now I want a few tacos!
     
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  8. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Well that is a solid theory: that repeated compulsive actions like eating too much, drinking too much, gambling too much etc are all just weakness of will.

    But it is not supported by all in the arena of behavioral studies.

    Then I suppose one might argue that a pattern of compulsive action indicates the subject is not "sane"?
    Which brings us to the range of theories about mental health care.
    The common assertion that problems like depression are just weakness of will tends to stigmatize mental health care.

    The medical community generally agrees that obesity is an epidemic in the US.
    For some the problem is in the physical systems that regulate weight, while for others it's just eating too much and not getting enough exercise.
    All that might also lead us to argue that height and weight standards are wrong.

    And at the same time we have eating disorders that result in wasting away to death, and also it seems there is a growing health and fitness craze that is for some just another compulsive behavior, and not a sign of some great strength of will.

    Or we can conclude that weakness of will is not the underling cause of all those compulsive behaviors?

    I've commented among 12 step fellowship friends that I can no longer afford to act on emotion, obsession and compulsion; when a member comments about being unable to control their eating.
    That of course goes over like a lead balloon!

    Judging (or appearing to judge) others for not adhering to MY idealized standards?
    Most of us know somebody who does THAT compulsively!
    My poorly articulated point in the context of working a 12 step program is that we have a solution to compulsive actions. Generally the compulsive behavior is not caused by the food, the booze, the drugs, or the scratch tickets!

    Obeying our emotions as if they were actual choices we made?
    That is a central focus in 12 step recovery.
    And there is a 12 step program for virtually every compulsive habit that results for some individuals in self harm.

    Another thing we do is learn to separate out the feelings we experience, which are not all emotions.
    Anxiety is experienced when we don't get enough to eat and our blood sugar drops.
    Also in situations of danger, anxiety is a chemical, thus physical response.
    Further, soldiers with PTSD do not have an "emotional" problem.
    Those are feeling that are not necessarily emotions, however, we may develop an emotional reaction to repeated brain chemistry reactions to traumatic stimulus.
    With practice we can separate out a multitude of feelings, and understand the causes of most of them.

    There is plenty of scientific evidence showing that past trauma creates a pattern of chemical reactions.

    Again, "weakness of will" is just a label, not a fact.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2020
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  9. Bluesboy3

    Bluesboy3 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I so much appreciate your point of view on this. Thanks.
     
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  10. 4pickupguy

    4pickupguy Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I can stop buying pedals anytime I want!!
     
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  11. P Thought

    P Thought Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    The best way to stop is never to start.

     
  12. Bluesboy3

    Bluesboy3 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Hmmm.... easy to say in hindsight..... Never have a beer? Never smoke a cig?
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
  13. boneyguy

    boneyguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    I'm a metaphor guy too!! My interest and study is in the area usually called 'embodied metaphor' rather than metaphor as a literary device, although they are of course related. The Johnson and Lakoff type metaphor work (Metaphors We Live By) although since their seminal work the field has really blossomed with lots of interesting ways of working with personal metaphor as a therapeutic tool. It's where the real juice is when endeavouring to understand an individuals model of the world I think.
     
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  14. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    My point had nothing to do with addictive behaviors. It was about controlling one's emotions.

    Committing a crime of passion and claiming insanity has been an accepted defense for a while now. The perp is either guilty of the crime because they were fully aware of their actions, or they are not guilty because they've been deemed insane by competent authority (and unaware of their actions) at the time of the commission of the crime.
     
  15. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Ahhh, interesting, that wasn't quite clear in your post.
    Easy to mix up given the current sort of out of control society, maybe made the more poignant by children that don't want to go out to play because they fear they will miss the fake social life on their smart phones.

    As far as insanity pleas go, I don't follow case histories but there was that case some years back where a fellow was deemed fit for trial and sentenced to death. He ate his special last meal, but saved his selected piece of pie for later, planning to eat it after the execution.
    One might wonder if genuinely not understanding his own death might be strong evidence that he could not understand other things like right and wrong, or life and death.

    You specifically referred to weakness of will.
    I suppose we all get a different strength of will, hard to say how it manifests, but it is not the same for every person.

    Then we might notice that some would call punching a guy in a bar who insults you; an example of strength of will, while others consider restraint to require more strength of will.
    In the discussion of emotion it would seem that punching mouthy individuals in bars is a sign of out of control emotions.
    Yet our barroom buddies might see that differently.
    Falls in the "don't mistake my kindness for weakness" camp.

    Then how about @getbent telling of giving money to a skilled grifter who told a moving tale?
    If that strength of will? Or weakness of will?

    I think the classic judgement of the will of others, and judgement of the strength of others; is a tradition steeped in a sense of innate superiority. One might actually and rightfully suggest that judging others is a sign of weakness of will.
    But again, it is a human custom that leads to wars and crimes, even as it claims to be a sort of backbone of culture.

    Morality is taste, not fact.
    Humanity that adheres only to one leaders taste in morality?
    To one standard for strength of will?

    Does anyone really want to live in a world like that?
    I bet many do, and I'd propose that those are not who I want in my lifeboat when intolerance sinks us.

    Interesting discussion!
     
  16. hepular

    hepular Tele-Meister

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    i wound up buying death is the mother of beauty the hard way from the tx am library since i inadvertently stole it.

    my big schtick for the last while has been the failure of literary concepts of metaphor and especially symbol to deal with what Hawthorne's actually doing with Hester Prynne's fashion design in scarlet letter and custom house.

    totally agree with last sentence. my kid's doing a possibly related thing (but more with narratives and anchoring events etc) in social psych at umass amherst
     
  17. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    WRT "emotion is the enemy"?

    Right now I have to agree, but I cannot go into my agreement, aside from saying no groups seem immune from becoming the enemy via their emotional reaction to current events.
     
  18. getbent

    getbent Telefied Silver Supporter

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    I think I regretted it (even at the time) not because of the money, but I was buying something for me and it wasn't what I thought it was. I was busy at work solving something and when I saw this, I was kind of, briefly, awakened from my focus and I saw what appeared to be humanity with a need.. and I thought a quick trip to the instateller would solve it.

    Having done that, I could go back to making gadgets for a harried and busy world. Then, I was reminded that that is not how you do change and not how you help people or do good or make things better.

    There are people at the fringes of things who exploit that selfishness (mine) for their gain.

    There is time, often, to think things through, to consider multiple options and outcomes. Love at first sight is usually not a good thing, and the insanity plea (if you look into it) is rarely successful.

    The best we can hope for are the fewest lapses of attention and forgiveness when we have them.
     
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  19. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I've long been an adherent to irony and metaphor as key communications tools.
    Even in Jr High I was well known for communicating in metaphors, with of course a mixed bag of results.
    My goal is more long game that instant gratification, and my friends often tell me after a couple of years that they only just understood things I said a year prior, things that baffled them enough to to ruminate on and recall for that duration.

    For my twisted mind, metaphor alone is inadequate, and I believe that liberal application of irony is essential to getting results.
    The new TLDR is really not new, and back before the internet we communicated with actual sounds recognizable as words with meanings. The first order of irony might be addressing the fact that many who use words care little for the meanings.
    That apathy in communication needs to be broken up before metaphor can be really effective as a communication tool.

    Maybe my use of metaphor is not the same as others refer to it?
    There would be clinical and scholarly consideration, but for me there is no separation between theory and reality.
    Same as there is no separation between life and art.

    So for my dollar, a dollars worth of survival cost to live for a single day, I'd like to address the larger issue I see in the survival of our species: The closed mind.

    Metaphor is a favorite tool in my toolbox when addressing the generally closed minds of humanity!
    It comes from a shape shifter perspective where in order to reach into a closed mind I must first identify with the occupant.
    Then I must deliver some idea product the occupant can identify with, but without pretending to be of the same mind.
    So once I establish that uncertainty, where I am not clearly ally or enemy; I choose to further confuse via the application of a harshly contrasting irony that may or may not be seen for what it is. BUT, it will be seen as an outlier in the incoming data stream I present.

    The goal is both for the listener to actually listen, but more for them to choose to think.
    I suppose this could be seen as communicational terrorism?
    But it isn't propaganda, rather it is anti propaganda.
    I suppose it could be seen as insanity on my part too.
    A hope that even the most closed mind has an innate potential for opening.
    Why anoint myself an opener of minds?
    That question I cannot answer.

    Again, years of results have shown friends inform me that after a few years they began to understand me.

    Of course there are many communications needs that do not benefit from this activity, and when dealing with contractual communication I prefer to keep the involved minds as closed as possible, because agreements that include money need to stay on point! That was harder to learn than the more natural inclination to communicate in a more open loop.
    One eventually discovers that the nature of a contract is a closed loop and needs to stay that way!

    ......xyz......
     
  20. boneyguy

    boneyguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    Specifically, the type of metaphor I'm speaking of and most interested in (and tune my ear towards) is people's unconscious use of metaphors. The 'metaphors they live by'...as the title of the Johnson & Lakoff book overtly suggests. The metaphors we use that we are mostly unaware of using. These are the metaphors that we organize our beliefs, behaviours, choices etc. around. They are typically out of our awareness until we turn our attention toward how we are using language. If we change the metaphors we use to describe our experience then we change our experience.

    Ultimately, to my way of thinking, there is only metaphor. Language, both written and spoken, is completely symbolic. Every word. Language consists of sounds and visual symbols that stand for or represent a thing but is not the thing itself. That's metaphor. So language doesn't simply contain metaphor it is metaphor.

    Our sensory apparatus operate metaphorically. Science tells us very plainly that our senses dismiss far more information than they permit entry into us. So the things we sense around us are only an impoverished representation of the thing itself. Again, that's the process of creating metaphor.

    According to my thinking, metaphor, I believe, is the bridge we use to bring the outside world into our inner world. It's the interface between our physical environment and our internal environment. Metaphor gives meaning and shape to experience.

    Here's a fun little metaphor party trick. The next time someone is speaking to you about an experience...perhaps a pain or discomfort in their body...or mind....as them "What's that like?". You may not get a metaphor from them immediately...you may have to tease it from them by beginning the sentence for them..."It's like.....?" Sooner or later they will describe their experience in a very clear metaphor..."It's like a big green snake is wrapping itself around my head and squeezing......" etc. Now, that's something to work with. If you begin to playfully ask questions about that metaphor and perhaps shift that metaphor gently then you will very likely noticeably alter that person's experience of thing the metaphor was describing. It's powerful sh*t. (notice that metaphors are neither 'powerful' nor 'sh*t'....that was just a metaphor about metaphors)
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
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