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The Book You Would Have Received at Birth, Were This a Smarter World
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .THE UNIQUE & POWERFUL SOCIO-EXISTENTIAL INFORMATIONAL TOOL THAT EVERY HUMAN BEING MUST HAVE
- Your computer, smartphone, automobile, air conditioner, and washing machine all came with a User's Guide.
...Why didn't you?
HERE IT IS
VINCENT FRANK DE BENEDETTO
THE HUMAN BEING OWNER'S MANUAL incorporates the love ethic, or brotherly love, Agape in the language of Greek philosophy, and of Mr. De Benedetto's seminal volume LOVE. It also incorporates, perhaps re-purposed, material from Mr. De Benedetto's pending work NEIGHBORS OF DEATH.
Further back cover copy pending.
"Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder."
-- British Historian Arnold Toynbee
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Composition of this volume has just begun, September 2020, but will ultimately be extensive, developing incrementally.
INTELLECT, MATURITY, LOVE
If you think that young people, depending on specific age range, are not particularly educated, wise or life experienced--you're generally right, of course. Caution, however, because if you concomitantly imagine that becoming an adult, or interacting with adults, is going to change this--forget it. Adults, in the main, that is, most adults, at least evidently in American culture, continue to behave stupidly, with low levels of awareness of many, if not most, things, and a cavalier disregard for most people, save those from whom they need or want something, or, generally speaking, members of their immediate family.
Note, crucially, that I assert that most people continue to behave stupidly. I do not assert that most people are stupid--as easy and axiomatic as this latter assertion is generally considered by most people to make.
In moving through life, the two characteristics you'll likely encounter most frequently in other people are:
The qualities we see commonly in children.
In fact, and in sum, most adults remain children. Rarely, if ever, will you encounter an adult who is truly a loving person--and the trick here is that, because its likely that you, yourself possess only the most fleeting acquaintance with Agape, if you ever do encounter said individual--it's not assured that you'll even know it.
Yes, the year 2020 still finds the human race--our One Human Family, such as it is--in a wretched condition regarding how it treats itself, that is, how we treat one another.
Just this morning, for example, I learned that a neighbor whose house stands in extremely close physically proximity to ours, who appeared to be cooperating with my family on a matter of importance to us, is evidently not cooperating, after all. He deviated unilaterally from our plan with not a word spoken--and I just touched on the matter again with him only about 24 hours before.
The import, here, in the first place, is that he evidently possesses no (mature) love for me or my Mother, and by extension for my Father or my sister. Secondly, he evidently can't be trusted. His word means nothing.
You'd think, and certainly hope, that this individual, both 31 years old and an "orthodox Jew," married with several children, would have reached a minimal kind of standing by this time in life, in intellect and maturity, that is, in Love, to eschew such a treacherous action. He evidently hasn't, however--and like many, if not most, people, he likely never will.
The psycho-social reality is that most adults in American, and likely world, culture are essentially children. He and his wife are simply two more. To wit does Erich Fromm ask (temporary paraphrase):
"How many of us have ever seen a genuinely loving person?"
In some good measure the human race still comprises the inmates running the asylum, or the children largely prevailing over the parents. Speaking globally, who are the "parents"? Traditionally we might have pointed to POTUS, the President of the United States, above all, as our example.
But in this case, Donald J. Trump? He's an exemplar of a parent?
Or in earlier epochs, Richard M. Nixon?
ACTUALIZATION OF MIND
Your most important general task over your lifetime is the preservation of the health of your mind, and its repository, your brain: as you may eventually realize, much of Western, and other, culture tears down the mind. Sugar, for example, which is contained in just about every food and beverage item, is actually a poison, extremely toxic to the brain and body.
Ergo, keep away from sugar, as well as all artificial sweeteners. Your principal beverage should be water, from a tap with excellent filtration, or for store-purchased water, from a glass bottle, never plastic, as you don't want chemical contamination from the plastic leaching into the water. Kind of defeats your impulse toward health, would it not?
If existing American and global health choices remain poor, especially the present massive consumption of sugar in all its forms (sucrose, fructose, dextrose, etc.), expect global health to remain poor--and this means you, and your family. Expect continuing poor health in all respects, including that of mind and brain. Dementia, already a growing global scourge, will continue its insidious forward march, and ultimately come to define the mind of man.
Without a deliberate shift away from unhealthy food and beverage, environment, and stress, expect that in your lifetime you, yourself, and/or some of those around you, such as your own father or mother, will become demented. This disease, dementia, is insidious because it often develops incrementally, that is, a bit at a time, usually slowly, and is thus hard to detect--until it's too late. That's what happened in my family.
Stress also comprises a powerful and explicit antagonist to the health of the entire body and brain; worse than poor food, in fact. Avoiding stress in the modern world, however, is very difficult, nearly impossible, if not actually impossible in many instances--which is why the solution to the pain of humankind is to be found not in the physical, but social sciences, specifically that area of social science, such as my area, studying and promulgating the formal and official adoption of the Love ethic (properly understood).
My health site treats these critical topics, as well.
Ergo, def. "therefore"
In life you'll find that both human and non-human beings will encroach or intrude into your physical, and sometimes psychological, space if you're not diligent in protecting it.
For example, if you fail to regularly clean, declutter, vacuum and inspect your physical living space, whether a house, apartment, condo, or space you rent, lease, or barter from another, you'll find, sometimes sooner rather than later, that any number of likely unwanted squatters have taken up residence with you.
Your newfound friends would likely include such beings as mice, rats, squirrels, racoons, or birds, or even, depending on your location, larger friends such as bears, and on the more diminutive side of the spectrum: flies, fleas, ticks, lice, cockroaches, moths, carpet beetles, silverfish, millipedes, or termites.
The human end of the spectrum will have its interlopers, as well, ranging from erstwhile romantic partners whether spousal or otherwise seeking a renewal of the previous relationship, or perhaps a renewal simply of an element of that relationship, such as sex, to, in my own real-world dilemma, a two-bit lawn cutter who regularly trespasses on the property of my family in the course of his work for a next-door neighbor, though apprised and even warned repeatedly by me to refrain from such trespassing and keep off of our property.
This individual suffers from the ubiquitous social malady or maladaption / maladaptation condition that I conceive and label Gross Stupidity Syndrome (GSS), a condition whereby the sufferer "acts "stupidly," or "with stupidity," that is, engages regularly in one or more acts committed, or refrained from commmission, that cause substantive unnecessary injury to one or more persons or harm to one or more resources, or both.
Even your employment is subject to intrusion and possible usurpation by someone wishing your position, who may somehow insinuate themselves into your physical work environment to influence your employer or otherwise simply into their consciousness.
LEARNING TO KILL
Are you the kind of individual who wouldn't hurt a fly?
Well I suggest that you start hurting them, or, more mercifully, quickly killing them, because over the course of your lifetime you may find yourself in a circumstance where your life, or that of a significant other, is gravely threatened. If you have no experience whatsoever in taking a life, and have never thought about it nor grappled with its various implications, you may find yourself immobilized and unable to act in a life-threatening crisis, thereby unnecessarily abdicating a life that you value.
With the belief in Agape, or Brotherly Love that I advocate and teach, we value the life of any aggressor, as well as our own lives. But ultimately, self-love, a key part of the understanding and practice of Love, dictates that, as the absolute last step in a graduated response hierarchy (GRH), we take a life if absolutely necessary.
Accordingly, I recommend that throughout your life you embrace the opportunity to dispense small-scale death, in regard, for example, to the annoying insect that wandered into your home.
The Internet is virtue and vice connected at the technological hip. Along with its virtues the Internet brings decided vices.
In terms of harm to our physical organism, for example: Humankind did not evolve to sit in a chair for an extended period of time, as typically happens with Internet use.
Nor is it necessarily salutary to be exposed to every manner of moral and intellectual detritus on the Net.
Internet use should only occur with Internet 2 (not in existence yet), as defined, described, and advocated at my Internet resource TWONETS.COM.
I, as a philosopher, and any intelligent layman, will both advise against presumption. In life, it's best never to assume anything, about anyone or anything. Just FIND OUT. Things are often not what they appear--and this is true even for smart people. How much more true is it for the rest of us who, honestly, aren't really that smart.
For example, yesterday morning at 2:09 am I called my neighbor directly across the street because it appeared that someone in their family had left their car lights on. Though I have little respect for this family, my better-self often prevails, and in this case it directed me to call them to let them know, lest they find a dead battery in the morning. I've taken similar actions in the past to help them avoid injury, though not lately, since they destroyed our relationship.
Having two telephone number for this particular family I called both. The second call, to a mobile telephone, succeeded and i left a voicemail concerning what I'd observed. The first call, to their home landline, did not succeed. Upon calling, I heard their outgoing message and began leaving my incoming message. Before done I began to hear a series of noises on the phone, culminating in what appeared to be a hang-up. In other words, someone appeared to have hung up on me.
Now, adherence to the No-Presumption rule (NPR) means that I would not presume to have been hung up on, but would instead wait, and hold judgments and conclusions until information-gathering was complete. However, in select cases one may acknowledge "near-certainties," supplanting the NPR.
In this case, for example:
Accordingly, my confidence level is fairly high in this case that I know what occurred. I feel it highly-likely, a near-certainty, in fact, that one or both of these pitiful imbeciles hung up on me, and this pair of reasons is sufficient to support invocation of the ANC override.
Specifically, I base this conclusion on what I already know to be their mediocre intellect and value system, as well as the particular behavior of their answering machine as i was leaving my message. When an answering machine permits you to leave a message but as you're doing so the machine stops, perhaps regurgitating a bit, it's often because the recipient of the call terminated it as the message was being recorded.
ANCO (the ANC Override) guideline is meant to spare perceptive or otherwise extremely intelligent persons the possible humiliation, wasted time, and personal or social reversals in engineering events to hold a presumption, when that presumption is likely superfluous. In this case, for example, if I was angry at being hung up on, and wanted to approach the two imbeciles about it quickly with my anger intact, ready to present it to them before it began to eat at me, it could be psychologically injurious to me to hold myself in a state of uncertainty. It can be painful to feel anger but remain uncertain as to the specific cause of the anger, because if one acts in a responsible and loving manner and refrains from expression of the anger until it can be correctly directed, pain is caused. This process can be circumvented in select cases when ANCO is employed.
Trekkies, that is, dedicated fans of the Star Trek science fiction franchise, know the phenomenon of the distress call. A Federation starship, that's the United Federation of Planets, the controlling intergalactic fraternal body featured in the franchise, will receive a signal through space, typically from an alien starship, indicating a serious problem and soliciting assistance. Such an event is typically used to open and theme an episode of Trek, no matter the particular Trek series.
Trekkies also know that when a Federation starship or other Federation vessel is solicited with a distress call, it responds in some fashion, almost without exception, as the Love-oriented axiology of the Federation would permit no other response. It would be unheard of for the Federation to ignore such a plea.
Yet isn't our recent outreach to my Mother's affluent brother Joe, for financial assistance, akin to the broadcast of a signal for distress in the Star Trek universe? And while the morality of the Federation is established and sound, the same cannot be said of the morality of my Uncle Joe, or indeed his two brothers, S. and J., also my Uncles, as Joe took the plea submitted solely to him, and alerted his brothers, the group of which responded, "No."
The amount requested was $1000, which my Uncle Joe, as we understand his financial resource, could have easily given us. Alternatively, each of the three brothers, whom I now permanently term The Three Scrooges, could have easily given us about $333.00 each, for a total of $1000 requested. But they did not. In fact, none of them elected to give us--myself and my Mother, their Sister who will be 90 years old this Spring and is ill, a dime. Not one thin dime.
Such is the pathological individualism of the global system of ego-capitalism, the real epidemic to be feared, readily infecting even families. Nor will a mask prevent it, I'm afraid.
When the crackpot science-fiction imaginings of underpaid television writers exceed the full vigor of the moral code of established societies and the theorists and philosophers who designed them (such as Mssrs. Locke, Rousseau, et al.), it may be time to rewrite that code and re-establish those societies. And while we're at it, let's dispense altogether with the paradigm of society, in final favor of community.
HOW TO SOLVE A PROBLEM
Learn the True Nature of a Thing
To solve a problem you must truly understand the problem. Whether the problem is another person, a difficult life circumstance or situation, a health issue, a financial problem, or anything or anyone else, to address it, or they, you must clearly understand it, or them. You must know what or whom you're dealing with--you must truly and clearly understand the problem.
In my own life, for example, most of my problems have, and do, revolve around conflict with people, because they unthinkingly or cruelly commit misdeeds against me or my family. These are situations where other people are clearly incorrect in their behavior, but either don't realize it, don't fully realize it, or simply don't care--outward expressions or even declarations of theology or morality, aside. I'm only too happy to admit (and try to correct) my own mistakes, but as regards this entry, the mistakes were not mine.
For example, consider the "neighbor" who, some months ago, in trying for the first or second time to negotiate his food trailer into a tiny driveway diagonally across the street from my house, actually drove right up my embanked lawn with the SUV pulling the trailer, leaving a deep tire gauge, and mentioning nothing about it. While clearly his transgression, I'm left to mop-up the detritus, alone, including my own emotional response, especially anger, thoughts about compensation, formulation of a complex plan to restore the lawn, and a fresh bolster of my existing lack of trust in, and in fact years-long fear of, this individual and his partner.
See my pending volume NEIGHBORS OF DEATH for full account.
Figure #1 - Gouge in my lawn. Transgressing neighbor said nothing.
What was tremendously helpful for me in dealing with such negligent and/or cruel persons, and others, was realizing their true nature. When I genuinely and clearly realized what I was dealing with, the equivalent of children, I actually felt much better and more centered, and confident in my posture viz-a-viz such persons. When I realized that most people, very commonly including adults, had the personality structure, and therefore the behavior patterns, of children, it shifted my perspective on such individuals, their errant behavior, and how I would respond.
Of course, this is a standard theme in the work of Erich Fromm. If you've read nothing by Dr. Fromm, run, don't walk, to begin reading him. Start with The Sane Society and The Art of Loving.
More to come on this complex but critical life topic.
. . . . . . . .
Also see topic People, above.
MORE OF MY WORK
NEIGHBORS OF DEATH
BROTHERHOOD OF MAN
THE AGAPE ORDER
MESSAGE OF HOPE
OUR BETTER SELVES
KEYS TO GOOD HEALTH
VINCENT FRANK DE BENEDETTO
~ The Book You Would Have Received at Birth, Were this A Smarter World ~
HUMAN BEING OWNER'S MANUAL