Overpride is humanity’s bane


Confucius encounters Rong Qiqi, an elderly recluse who has chosen a life of ascetism. Rong is starkly in contrast with the Confucian ideal of a successful man; he is elderly, poorly dressed, with no material possessions or ambitions. And yet, despite his poverty, Rong appears happy to Confucius. He responds to Confucius’ bewilderment with a cheerful song, happily accompanied by his playing of the lute. The Han Dynasty classic Huainanzi reports that “when Rong Qiqi plucks one chord of his lute, Confucius, moved by its harmony, rejoiced for three days.”

Confucius requests Rong provide reasons for his happiness. Rong Qiqi, Confucius surmised, has nothing to be joyful of; he has no possessions, no hope, and no future. Rong replies that he is happy for living to an old age. That, for him, is enough.

After all, Rong surmises, most men are poor and all men will die, so why should he worry himself? This is consistent with all lives, so instead of waiting with everyone else for it to eventually end, why should he worry himself with anything? Why should he deny himself happiness? Instead of being miserable, waiting for his fate, he chooses to be happy. Says Rong Qiqi:

“ For humans, a life of hardship is the norm and death is the end. Abiding by the norm, awaiting my end, what is there to be concerned about?

Confucius was known for his emphasis on filial piety and on the importance of education and studying. This makes him a perfect foil for Rong Qiqi, who rejects his personal responsibilities in favor of pursuing happiness.

Rong Qiqi’s appeal was his complete abstinence of material desires. He was similar to his Western counterpart, Diogenes the Cynic, in rejecting all societal norms and physical comforts for a life of ascetic virtue.

Being destitute was, by itself, not an appealing trait. But being liberated from societal pretension was a mind-
blowing positive feature.

The philosophy of the possibly Rong Qiqi was widely admired among writers, with artists viewing it at as a more natural, more fluid, more liberating way to live life. The poet Ruan Kan wrote approvingly of Rong, applauding Rong Qiqi’s fatalistic view of life as a way to achieve the tranquility and harmony valued in Daoism as integral to the Tao.

Of slave & storyteller Aesop — like those who dine well off the plainest dishes, he made use of humble incidents to teach great


The poor are accepted as constituting the primary recipients of the Good News and, therefore, as having an inherent capacity of understanding it better than anyone else. That’s pretty threatening for any comfortable Christian. For not only do we have to help the poor, not only do we have to advocate on their behalf, we also have to see them as perhaps understanding God better than we do.
But that’s not a new idea: It goes back to Jesus. The poor, the sick and the outcast “got him better than the wealthy did. Perhaps because there was less standing between the poor and God. Less stuff [pride]. Maybe that’s why Jesus said in the Gospel of Matthew, “You will have treasure in heaven, and follow me. Like I said, pretty disturbing, then and now. It’s hardly “the opposite of the Gospel, as Beck said. The opposite of the Gospel would be to acquire wealth and fail to work on behalf of the poor.


¦. There was an outfielder on that team named Hank Thompson. Bobby Thomson was white and Hank Thompson was black. I asked my father if they were brothers. He laughed and said: “No. You know how you can tell they’re not brothers?
I said I didn’t. He said, “Hank Thompson spells his last name t-h-o-m-p-s-o-n. Bobby Thomson doesn’t have a ‘p’ in his last name. If they were brothers they would spell their names the same.
It was years before I realized what a terrific thing that was to say to a kid.


Gifts, especially of wisdom, are to share,
per John 6:63. Not to constrain to oneself. Which is why I share Steven Kalas’ gift of
wisdom w/those like myself most in need.
From sage Steven Kalas on the immense power of forgiveness — When reconciliation is real, the injuries sustained and healed in relationships become perhaps the strongest part of the bond. Scars are made beautiful. Even treasured in some peculiar way.
We don’t aim at forgetting. Yet, when the power of forgiveness is asked for and given, the delightful paradox is that then we often do forget.
I accept my foe’s apology. Shortly and simply. I hope, graciously. Where there was once silent emptiness there now abides freedom and the exchange of peace.
I’m happy for both of us.



We have freedom to find meaning in what we do, and what we experience, or at least in the stand we take when faced with a situation of unchangeable suffering, such as the Holocaust, of which Frankl was a survivor.

The use of the term spirit is not “spiritual” or “religious.” In Frankl’s view, the spirit is the will of the human being. The emphasis, therefore, is on the search for meaning, which is not necessarily the search for God or any other supernatural being. Frankl also noted the barriers to humanity’s quest for meaning in life. He warns against affluence, hedonism, and materialism in the search for meaning.

We can find meaning by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering and that “everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances”. On the meaning of suffering, Frankl gives the following example:

Once, an elderly general practitioner consulted me because of his severe depression. He could not overcome the loss of his wife who had died two years before and whom he had loved above all else. Now how could I help him? What should I tell him? I refrained from telling him anything, but instead confronted him with a question, “What would have happened, Doctor, if you had died first, and your wife would have had to survive you?”: “Oh,” he said, “for her this would have been terrible; how she would have suffered!” Whereupon I replied, “You see, Doctor, such a suffering has been spared her, and it is you who have spared her this suffering; but now, you have to pay for it by surviving and mourning her.” He said no word but shook my hand and calmly left the office.
— Viktor Frankl

Frankl emphasized that realizing the value of suffering is meaningful when creative possibilities are not available, such as in a concentration camp, and only when such suffering is inevitable – he was not proposing that people suffer unnecessarily.


Contempo existentialism postulates that
one must make his and her own values in an indifferent world. One can live meaningfully [free of despair and anxiety] in an unconditional commitment to something finite, and devotes that meaningful life to the commitment, despite the external vulnerability inherent to doing so. I love history. I love life. My existential definition lies right here, right at this instant.

Grace shapes our ideas about suffering and healing. Grace shapes the way we apprehend human dilemmas and proceed in our attempts to ameliorate those dilemmas.

God’s Grace allows for Redemption, unearned and unmerited, but for the Grace of God. We all fall short. Most unfortunate, but such is our indifferent human lot.
Yes, we try our best to be authentic, however clumsily we plod forward, and in this sense, as with life overall, Redemption is key, brought on by God’s Grace.

The most beautiful and erotic [as in lovers Jack and Rose in the 1997 movie Titanic] expressions from Ms. Toni Robert — “Just remember, your future is mine too. We are in this together. Sigh….

Who undyngly poured their lives into your own just because it made them smile to see you happy, thriving and victorious? Can you see their faces? Can you feel their love? Can you experience Divinity?
Recount their legacy. Right now. And be grateful.

How do I find meaning and identity, comfort and consolation, in an indifferent world??

Does love truly come to everyone? Or may I die alone, having never been loved or given the chance to love?
Love life, even if love does not come to you. You shall be rewarded in the afterlife, brah’/sis’

I measure up in my love and devotion to you, even
if I don’t measure up in your eyes. I shall move
on, knowing that my love for you is true.
When I am ignored/forgotten, or when I await a minus/negative communication as one unburdens of me, I repose and take comfort that love lives on in my heart and in the afterlife, and that just the same, romance never dies, now or in the hereafter.

“There, but for the Grace of God, go I” has its analog in Psalm 124: “If it had not been the Lord who was on our side,…when men rose up against us, then they would have swallowed us up alive.”

Sista’s memoir takes a sympathetic look at people who find hope at an end, as in suicide to end emotional or physical pain. Paradox is that Sista’s memoir of 40 yrs. ago in the thread “What is the meaning of life” is the most life affirming recount I’ve seen. The characters have real struggles — but at the end of the storyline, I see more beauty in it and in life, even in its most difficult moments. And it’s such a short allegory! Sista’ conveys so much in relatively few paragraphs.

An overprideful person “swallows one’s own stomach. Such nature entails endless self-aggrandizement and vanity, and ensures incomprehensibility at the moment it compels authenticity/truth.

It is true, the strength behind the leader is the
person who mystifies me, the so-called unspoken one, like baby brother Andrew was to Peter [Bible]. God has no use for pride, such that the meekest of the meek went on to lead, like Moses/Gideon. Look at King David. Lowly Nathan chastened shell-shocked David. Look at Joshua/etc. All unheralded/unsung
heroes. Tremendous symbolism of “never judge a book by its cover.










She is a figure both of the epic tradition and of tragedy, where her combination of deep understanding and powerlessness exemplify the tragic condition of humankind.


In 1963, psychologist Melanie Klein provided an interpretation of Cassandra as representing the human moral conscience whose main task is to issue warnings. Cassandra as moral conscience, “predicts ill to come and warns that punishment will follow and grief arise.” Cassandra’s need to point out moral infringements and subsequent social consequences is driven by what Klein calls “the destructive influences of the cruel super-ego,” which is represented in the Greek myth by the god Apollo, Cassandra’s overlord and persecutor. Klein’s use of the metaphor centers on the moral nature of certain predictions, which tends to evoke in others “a refusal to believe what at the same time they know to be true, and expresses the universal tendency toward denial, [with] denial being a potent defence against persecutory anxiety and guilt.”


A Sullivan nod is executed by nodding slightly, by approximately 10–15 degrees, when the item it is hoped the customer will choose is reached. The key is to make the nod perceptible, yet subtle, so as to not distract. Originator, restaurant consultant, Jim Sullivan, claims that it works up to 60% of the time. (This in itself is another subtle form of manipulation, as “up to 60%” is essentially meaningless.) Sullivan developed the nod technique as a method to increase appetizer sales.


Obama’s Wars query whether the Constitution remains an operative document. The Constitution explicitly assigns to the president the role of commander-in-chief. Responsibility for the direction of American wars rests with him. According to the principle of civilian control, senior military officers advise and execute, but it’s the president who decides. That’s the theory, at least. Reality turns out to be considerably different.

Grecian hamartia is seen as an error in judgment or unwitting mistake as applied to the actions of the hero. For example, the hero might attempt to achieve a certain objective X; by making an error in judgment, however, the hero instead achieves the opposite of X, with disastrous consequences.

President Obama tries to avoid the oracle of endless war but is bogged down by the very thing which brings about more war, counter insurgency operations by us.
Another characteristic of Grecian hamartia/oracles is that they are almost always misunderstood by those who hear them. So that by trying to end war, Barack creates more war. By trying to win over Woodward, Barack loses Woodward via Barack’s failure to command respect among his medal popper color guard. Pandering to Woodward supersedes the public’s reaction.
Barack’s euphemism of honorable retreat instead of
the reality of losing a war plays into his Oracle/
Fate of a forsaken failed tragic hero. He tries to make
sense of being forsaken by Fate/history, but is
unable to grasp the reality of overpride, or what
Christians like Obama call the sins of egotism/vanity.
Barack’s powers of intellect/cunning override simple common sense. The terminal tragedy which plays out proverbially is that Barack becomes an unwitting prisoner of our own American imperialist/expansionist narrative, a carrier of the host toxin of hubris of his immediate predecessor Bush, but waylaying itself way back in time to our Puritan Exceptionalism of the White Man’s Burden/Colored Man’s Bestiality.
Pride/vanity are the most pernicious/pervasive
sins, so to speak [via Barack’s Christianity],
afflicting all social classes high & low. Greed
afflicts more so the rich, ergo the richer you
get, the greedier/more avaricious you become.

We then all become prisoners of war, vs. our higher truth.


Our two-party system [Dems/GOP] is vital to our
quality of life.
Dialectic (also called dialectics or the dialectical method) is a method of argument, which has been central to both Indic and Western philosophy since ancient times. The word “dialectic originates in Ancient Greece, and was made popular by Plato in his Socratic dialogues. Dialectic is based on a dialogue between two or more people who may hold differing views, yet wish to pursue truth by seeking agreement with one another. This is in contrast to debate, in which two or more people hold differing views and wish to persuade or prove one another wrong (and thus a jury or judge is needed to decide the matter), or rhetoric, which is a relatively long oration conducted by a single person, a method favored by the Sophists.
The dialectical method requires focus on opposite positions at the same time. It looks for a transcendence of the opposites entailing a leap of the imagination to a higher level, which (1) provides justification for rejecting both alternatives as false and/or (2) helps elucidate a real but previously veiled integral relationship between apparent opposites that have been kept apart and regarded as distinct.
Yes, the idiomatic Marxist thesis-antithesis-synthesis extrapolation, dating earlier to Kant/
Hegel, but finding its genesis in Grecian &
Asian [Hindu] literature.


KL Ching —
I completed today a update of my understanding of the accomplishments of the
100th and the 442nd with a very detailed update of date, events and
relevance of events. I had not realized the 100th/442nd had received more
Presidential Unit Citations (6) than any other Army unit during WW II.
This includes being compared with the most elite US Army units such as the
82nd and the 101st Airborne. We were THE BEST of the best. We were the
elite killing machine that “strutted our stuff” (to quote Ted Tsukiyama)
which was why the 100th/442nd was able to breached the previously invincible
Gothic Line in 2 days to effective end WW II in Europe. The 100th/442nd
strung together 3 CONSECUTIVE Presidential Unit Citations. This is true
Bushido! –KL Ching


Borreca on House Speaker Cal Say: Along the way he has made enemies by repeatedly trying to cut the budget by trimming state benefits to public workers and refusing to consider raising the general excise tax to balance the budget.

Rep. Roy Takumi, another legislative veteran, is being boosted by some in the anti-Say block.

Takumi is an employee of the Hawaii State AFL-CIO. the Hawaii Government Employees Association, the state’s largest public worker union.

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