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Monday, 04 July 2005

Comments

> Am I onto something or should I be taken to the looney bin?

I'm going to go with looney bin on this one.

I will point out that there are already plenty of people trying to solve this problem. Pharmaceuticals is big business, and they know an awful lot about brain chemistry. I hear they make a killing off of this "Prozac" thing.

If you are going to continue to follow this rabbit, I'd suggest at least reading up on brain chemistry and bio-feedback mechanisms.

However, I find that when I get trapped into a "I must fix everything" mindset, reading Zen Budhism (Koans) helps me unwind the analytical knot I've tied myself into. When I say read, I mean READ, not glance at and try to solve. Take some time out on a Sunday afternoon.

American culture can become overly obcessed with problem solving. Just remember you are a human and not a happiness machine.

At the same time, I don't mean to be discouraging. Your trials are more poetic than effective, and I think you're well aware of this =o)
Jordan

Just saw this and thought it might apply, amazing how interconnected thoughts are in the blogosphere.

http://www.aaronsw.com/weblog/downhillbattle
> Unfortunately for one, however, it is precisely this self-conscious monitoring that is the primary cause of poor dancing.

Consider, perhaps, that it is precisely the monitoring of happiness that is the primary cause of unhappiness.

As an alternate to Zen Koan's, listen to more Jazz (start with Miles) or hip-hop (start with Tribe or Common). All this punk shit up in Seattle is driving me insane (seems to be a common fate =o)

I think this is a great idea.

Reminds me of Ayn Rand's 'happiness is the attainment of ones values' definition.

Also the definition in 'Mega Tip 1' here:

http://www.neo-tech.com/megatips/

I find the Neo-Tech site kinda creepy. But it certainly fits in with the experiment.

> Am I onto something or should I be taken to the looney bin?

I vote for onto something. I assume this is all in ruby via RoR? You have achieved some mythical level with all this integration and statistical whateverthefuck...as always I want to play with this system meself, but understand if it is defacto closed ("a crazy tool that only I'd ever be able to figure out how to use")...etc etc gush gush...

Umm... based on the info you have recorded maybe look into Alcoholics Anonymous

I have to admit that I see a lot of the things you produce as having questionable value, though I'll also admit that I'm a mean old curmudgeon who hates the "blogosphere" and pointless self-congratulating social networks. But I really like this particular idea. I don't know whether it will work for you, or in general, but something about it definitely pleases me. Good luck!

Practicing restraint in any context can be beneficial whether it be in the use of drugs or alchohol, spending habits, sleeping, analyzing yourself, speaking your mind, etc.
But as I'm sure you've figured out, it can also feel incredibly good to completely indulge yourself. I've found that I am most content when I practice restraint no matter what the situation, but I wouldn't be able to practice restraint if I didn't first push my limits and overindulge myself. For much of my life I have felt confused, twisted, and guilt ridden for my own self destructive behaviors. But what I've realized is that by acting purely on the pleasure principle I am doing myself much more harm than good. That immediate rush of satisfaction is almost always followed by grief or regret when done excessively. But I've also realized that I am able to better appreciate the good things in life by experiencing some of the worst. Life is just as much about maintaining balance as it is about experiencing extremes. The higher you get, the harder the fall. But the reverse is also true. The sweetest fruit tastes much sweeter if you've eaten the most bitter. Don't be afraid of feeling pain because it will teach you to appreciate pleasure. Learn to let go of everything you know and believe, and it will reaffirm your faith in those same ideals. Everything will come full circle, just be thankful that you get to experience it at all.

Practicing restraint in any context can be beneficial whether it be in the use of drugs or alchohol, spending habits, sleeping, analyzing yourself, speaking your mind, etc.
But as I'm sure you've figured out, it can also feel incredibly good to completely indulge yourself. I've found that I am most content when I practice restraint no matter what the situation, but I wouldn't be able to do so if I didn't first push my limits and overindulge myself. For much of my life I have felt confused, twisted, and guilt ridden for my own self destructive behaviors. But what I've realized is that by acting purely on the pleasure principle I am doing myself much more harm than good. That immediate rush of satisfaction is almost always followed by grief or regret when done excessively. But I've also realized that I am able to better appreciate the good things in life by experiencing some of the worst. Life is just as much about maintaining balance as it is about experiencing extremes. The higher you get, the harder the fall. But the reverse is also true. The sweetest fruit tastes much sweeter if you've eaten the most bitter. Don't be afraid of feeling pain because it will teach you to appreciate pleasure. Learn to let go of everything you know and believe, and it will reaffirm your faith in those same ideals. Everything will come full circle, just be thankful that you get to experience it at all.

this was good

Practicing restraint in any context can be beneficial whether it be in the use of drugs or alchohol, spending habits, sleeping, analyzing yourself, speaking your mind, etc.
But as I'm sure you've figured out, it can also feel incredibly good to completely indulge yourself. I've found that I am most content when I practice restraint no matter what the situation, but I wouldn't be able to do so if I didn't first push my limits and overindulge myself. For much of my life I have felt confused, twisted, and guilt ridden for my own self destructive behaviors. But what I've realized is that by acting purely on the pleasure principle I am doing myself much more harm than good. That immediate rush of satisfaction is almost always followed by grief or regret when done excessively. But I've also realized that I am able to better appreciate the good things in life by experiencing some of the worst. Life is just as much about maintaining balance as it is about experiencing extremes. The higher you get, the harder the fall. But the reverse is also true. The sweetest fruit tastes much sweeter if you've eaten the most bitter. Don't be afraid of feeling pain because it will teach you to appreciate pleasure. Learn to let go of everything you know and believe, and it will reaffirm your faith in those same ideals. Everything will come full circle, just be thankful that you get to experience it at all.

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