Re: SOCIO: Friends

Gregory Houston (
Sat, 08 Mar 1997 05:23:29 -0600

Lee Daniel Crocker wrote:

> What better way to expand
> your relationships with others than by dedicating your mind to the task
> of discovering what everyone shares--i.e., objective reality?

Objective reality is the least common denominator of shared, exogenous
reality. It is for me, the least interesting facet of reality. It is
important for many to "dedicate" their minds to it in order to further
extroverted science, but it completely ignores and often denies
subjective or endogenous realities. I find a much higher pleasure, and
even ecstasy, in interacting with a select group of people who I have
cultivated similar experiences with so that we can penetrate truly
unexplored and hitherto unknown realms of subjective reality.

It is because so many people have dedicated their minds to objective
reality and because so few people haved dedicated their minds to
subjective reality that we find ourselves rapidly expanding science and
technology while as a whole we have not matured much at all in several
thousand years.

There is an overwhelming taboo in society to prefer endogenous space
over exogenous space. So it has gone undeveloped, unaugmented. Whos to
say that if we had not spent the last 500 years focusing on internal
augmentation rather than or in combination with external augmentation
that we would not have discovered by now how to do for ourselves what we
now require external objects for? What if we had spent all this time
developing mental tools for observing our own minds, like we have
created so many tools to observe the exteranl world, e.g., microscopes,
telescopes, etcettera? What if we had started emotive education 500
years ago, and cultivated the skills for observing endogenous reality?
Why do we not teach visualization skills in our schools? Why do we
insist on being blind to what lies within? There is a whole frontier
waiting for us that we have not begun to explore. Are you certain that
if we had not focused on the external and had rather focused on the
subtleties of the internal that we could not have discovered telepathy
rather than radio? Are you certain of that? According to the Future
Fantastic series, the CIA and many reputable scientists [in contrast to
the CIA] are not so certain of that.

What propelled external science was its tools for observation which made
prediction possible, but we have never rigorously developed the mental
tools for observing endogenous reality. Most people cannot even hold an
image in their mind, not to mention keep it sharp and unmoving. Very few
people have ever attempted any form of bio-feedback, and fewer yet have
been successful at it. These things require more discipline than most
people are willing to have. We REQUIRE government because we lack
self-discipline, we are blind to and mostly ignorant of an entirely
different paradigm of reality because we lack self-discipline.

Our minds are unbelievable technological devices, yet we have put out
relatively little effort to understand them firsthand, we'd rather probe
at someone elses rather than enter our own. Its like trying to
understand a computer by looking at a monitor while using a multi-meter
to probe whats happening on the circuit board. We are completely
ignoring the operating language. In this case our emotions. What is
better, the psychiatrist that "cures" a persons depression by giving
them a drug, or the psychologist who cures a persons depression by
teaching them to think in a new way and thus to change their CNS
chemical content directly themselves. The former person is dependent on
the drug, where the latter needs no drug. The latter has a better
understanding of the operating language where the former only
understands the hardware.

Stripped of religious idealogy, I believe a subjective science could be
created that would eventually surpass or at the least, seriously
augment, objective science in its usefulness, but we are lazy.

laziness, laziness, laziness, laziness.

Our minds are more powerful than computers are today. We have idiot
savants to show us just how incredible our potential is. Yet we choose
to create computers rather than to truly enhance our minds.

Lets say we developed skills of internal observation, visualiztion,
emotive sensitivity, etcettera, and then we developed skills of
bio-feedback, the ability to control autonomous bodily functions. We are
matter, localized energy, whats to say that with sufficient
intermiediary steps that we could not move on from bio-feedback to
controlling our energy in new and profound ways. We are always
discovering new and profound things via objective science. We would do
the same if we took the other path. So just entertain me for a moment as
I scenario-spin what must sound absolutely ridiculous to you, but if we
did at some point learn how to directly manipulate the energy that makes
us up, could we not then eventually overcome our needs for shelter,
food, air, etcetera. Could we not travel great distances by merely
changing the structure of our own energy, modifying ourselves so that we
could propel ourselves at and sustain high speeds.

I believe people cannot imagine such today in the same way that once
people could not imagine a round world, or traveling to the moon. You
might say that what I am talking about has been tried before, and it has
failed, but it has not truly been tried before, not in the way objective
science has. The tools for observation necessary for subjective science
have never been adequately developed, and even when one person begins to
develop them, it is difficult to find another person with the
self-discipline necessary to do the same. Such has almost been entirely
defered to religion, which has its own goals which hinder the kind of
advancement I am speaking about. And even in religion, relatively few
religions teach basic observation skills, that which is most
fundamentally necessary to ever realizing an endogenous science.

We are so incredibly unaware of ourselves, and instead of developing the
enabling skills necessary to become directly aware of ourselves, we
create a stethescope, a middleman to do the job for us. There are many
people who are aware of their pulse and their breathing, people who can
even modify their pulse by merely thinking about it, people who can
modify their body tempature by merely thinking about it. But in general
we are too lazy to do for ourselves what we can create an object to do.
And thus we remain ignorant of our own workings and potential. Its much
easier to take a couple aspirin to reduce a fever than to spend a couple
weeks to a couple months learning how to reduce a fever via
bio-feedback. Again its laziness. Anything our body does autonomously we
can learn to become aware of and to modify ourselves. We could learn to
boost our own immune systems and not even require medicine, but we are
crude people.

Fear and dislike of self: These two things compound our laziness in
hindering the realization of an endogenous science. Most people are
terrified of psychedelics. But its not the psychedelics that scare them,
its the confrontation with their endogenous reality that scares them,
the confrontation with self. People see demons and have repulsive
thoughts and then are repulsed by themselves. But instead of accepting
that it is a repulsion of self and a lack of discipline that causes
their bad trip, they say its the drug. The drug is evil, the drug is
bad. The drug caused their bad trip. Most people have no desire what so
ever to enter endogenous reality. The thought of it is terrifying and
potentially there really isn't anything more terrifying. The
subconscious is where these people have spent their life repressing all
their trashy thoughts. Once they see whats there, they are so
overwhelmed they never want to return. Its much safer in the objective
world. There are lots of people[automotons] to comfort them, and
thousands of tasks to keep their minds preoccupied so that they can live
a productive life without ever truly getting to know themselves.

Eventually I imagine the human species will branch off into new and
separate species following different evolutionary courses. I don't find
it likely that we will continue evolving along the same path forever.
Looking at evoltion as a whole, it actually seems very unlikely that we
will not branch off. One thing that may affect this branching, perhaps a
hundred years from now or two thousand years from now or more, will be a
choice between endogenous and exogenous reality, internal augmentation
versus external augmentation.

So in conclusion, no, I do not plan to dedicate my mind to the task of
discovering what everyone shares, e.g. objective reality. That is the
path we take by default. There are plenty of people on it. We seem to be
genetically predisposed to make that decision. My mind is dedicated to
endogenous reality. Dead end? Perhaps, but science of any sort is about
taking chances. My sudden interest in Extropy has been in its interest
for attaining immortality. Though perhaps I might be delusioned, I'm not
dumb, objective science has a big head start on attaining immortality,
and if it makes such possible I will be the first to jump on that wagon,
buts once [if] I become immortal, I have forever to develop endogenous
science, endogenous realities, and thus a degree of autonomy that could
never be obtained via objective science which requires so many levels of
symbiosis, dependency, and conformity with the other. Nature is pretty
damn cool, but if I had several billion years, I think I could create
something a hell of a lot cooler.

It is very easy to deny what you have never made a sustained and
disciplined effort to experience and more importantly to develop. The
scientists who speak most adamantly against endogenous science are those
who are most ignorant of endogenous reality.

Objective science is a tool for observation. And every tool has its
limitations. I am suggesting the development of another tool, subjective
or more accurately, endogenous science [because its not absolutely
subjective, just as objective science is not absolutely objective] to
augment and perhaps one day [for some] to replace the former. This has
nothing to do with superstitions, mysticism, blind faith, or
irrationality. It is actually a response to the superstions, selective
blindness, and irrationality of objective science. Endogenous science is
about circumventing external tools of augmentation, and particularly
external tools of observation which are not necessary. Its benefits are
all the same that emotive education offers plus the realization of a
level of autonomy that could never be achieved via external
augmentation. The greater our autonomy, the less we need and are
influenced by the other [nature, people, government, devices, drugs,
etcetera], and thus the greater are our chances as immortals, to truly
live forever. Endogenous science is fantasy now in no less the same
sense that objective science is what science fiction was.

And with all that said, I still consider myself Extropian. Of the five
principles it is only the fourth that I must clarify for myself. For I
am all for intelligent technology, but if its possible for me to develop
my brain to do something as quickly and effectively or more so than
external technology can, then I will opt for the former. It would be
ludicrous for an idiot savant who has the ability to rapidly count or do
arithmatic to use a calculator, he/she can do so faster than he/she
could even turn the calculator on. I will not use technology as an
excuse not to take responsibility for my own self-development. Again
what is better, the psychiatrist that "cures" a persons depression by
giving them a drug, or the psychologist who cures a persons depression
by teaching them to think in a new way and thus to change their CNS
chemical content directly themselves. I believe the latter active person
has several distinct advantages over the former passive patient. Deny
them if you will. I guess its easier to just give someone a drug. We
should probably stick to whats easiest. A dear friend of mine went to a
psychiatrist for the first time, she had not been there more than 20
minutes before the psychiatrist prescribed prozac to her. Its nice that
we have such simple solutions today.

Its easier to be disciplined by the government than to discipline
oneself. Its easier to be disciplined by a drug than to discipline
oneself. Its easier to be a passive recipiant rather than an active
participant. Its my understanding that Extropians are advocates of
self-governing, self-responsibility, and dynamic participation ... then
why would we choose external technology solely over internal technology.
Why would we choose dependency on external objects when we can
potentially do the same for ourselves via a better understanding and
more disciplined control over what we already have? Humans are a
wasteful lot. I have simply chosen to attempt a degree a balance.

"And how could there exist a 'common good'! The expression is a
self-contradiction: what can be common has ever but little value. In the
end it must be as it is and has always been: great things are for the
great, abysses for the profound, shudders and delicasies for the
refined, and, in sum, all rare things for the rare." [Nietzsche]

Your fringe Extropian,

Gregory Houston