Monday, 29 July 2013

Scarcity Breeds Increased Value

The environment that you live most of your time in has a large impact on your worldview/beliefs. Wherever you live or spend most of your time, there will be things (material and immaterial) that are either abundant or scarce. If something is scarce then it usually makes it more valuable (but why this is so I simply don't know. Perhaps certain psychologies value things because they are scarce, whereas other psychologies do not consider scarcity to be important). Take for instance modern day city dwellers, they live in urban environments made of brick, steel, tarmac and concrete where vegetation and animal life is scarce (you don't see many horses, cows or chickes wandering around outside the local 7-11 or the high street). This scarcity thus makes plants and animals more valuable to the city dweller, where they are rare, compared to the country dweller, where they are abundant. Now, becuase they are scarce and valuable, the city dweller looks upon them as 'things to value' 'things to cherish', which give rise to city based beliefs such as Vegetarianism and Environmentalism. This exact same phenonmena occured back in India circa 500 BC when the Jainist belief system was founded in the cities of the time where animal and plant life was also scarce. And what is the prime practice of Jainaism? To be vegetarian and not kill or harm any living thing, just like modern day Vegetarians. Is it merely coincidence that Jainism and Vegetarianism, which are both similar in practice and beliefs, were born in Cities and not rural environments? Possibly, but it seems unlikely to me. It seems more the case that the beliefs formed as a result of the environment that the people lived in.

Just like with city dwellers valuing plants and animals which are scarce, other environments cause people to value other things which are scarce.
 - Hunter gathererers value technology because it is scarce in the jungle. (cf. Cargo Cultists).
 - Northern Europeaners value citrus fruits because they don't grow in temporate climates. (cf. rented Pineapples).
- Small pox is valued by scientists because only two vials of it exist on Earth.
- Prisoners value tobacco because they don't have easy access to it in prison. (cf. the blackmarket value of tobacco in prisons).

Conversely, where some people may value that which is scarce, these same people do not value that which is abundant. In modern day industrialised cities food is abundant and is often disgarded because of minor blemishes or imperfections. Take the staple grain of the world for instace, wheat: wheat is only ~$150/ton. Per ton! Which is food enough to keep a man alive for ~2.7 years (assuming he eats a kilogram of wheat, ~2500 kCal, per day).

What is the possible alternative to valuing things based on how abundant or scarce they are? Perhaps instead of valuing things for themselves, not in relation to anything else is the way forwarrd. Not valuing a thing because it is either scarce or abundant, but simply because it is. Perhaps by taking this approach then we'll be able to appreciate each thing as a unique item, independent of other things.


[End.]

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Havamal Snippets 76: Your thoughts and deeds outlive your physical life

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).

Your thoughts and deeds live on after your life has ended.  The work of the Medieval-era stone masons who built the Cathedrals, and the work of the Ancient-era farmers who developed agriculture still live with us, though the men themselves are dead.

76

Deyr fé
deyja frændr
deyr sjálfr it sama
en orðstírr
deyr aldregi
hveim er sér góðan getr

Cattle die,
kinsmen die,
the self dies likewise;
but the renown
[6] for the one who gets good fame
[5] dies never.

Friday, 26 July 2013

Men of Yore: Diogenes of Sinope

This is another in a series of posts about men from history who have either achieved great things in one form or another by pushing boundaries: either in themselves or in society or science or exploration of some form.  Boundary pushing and growth is what men do, it's their nature: to grow and push outwards.  We, as men, are the frontiers men, the first to discover/uncover new territory, in a metaphysical sense (i.e. including both material and the immaterial) that is later colonised and 'civilised' by the rest of humanity. 

It is also partly intended to show images, be they paintings, statues or photographs of the countenaces of men of yore.  Because, quite frankly, many men wear the countenances of women these days: smiling, smirking, cooing, rolling their eyes, looking smug etc.  It's a sign of the times, and by showing some images of men from the past, I hope to show some modern men why looking surly, frowning and giving hard-ball stares at people is something to do, something to practice.





The most illustrious of the Cynic philosophers, Diogenes of Sinope (c. 404-323 B.C.E.) serves as the template for the Cynic sage in antiquity. An alleged student of Antisthenes, Diogenes maintains his teacher’s asceticism and emphasis on ethics, but brings to these philosophical positions a dynamism and sense of humor unrivaled in the history of philosophy. Though originally from Sinope, the majority of the stories comprising his philosophical biography occur in Athens, and some of the most celebrated of these place Alexander the Great or Plato as his foil.It is disputed whether Diogenes left anything in writing. If he did, the texts he composed have since been lost. In Cynicism, living and writing are two components of ethical practice, but Diogenes is much like Socrates and even Plato in his sentiments regarding the superiority of direct verbal interaction over the written account. Diogenes scolds Hegesias after he asks to be lent one of Diogenes’ writing tablets: “You are a simpleton, Hegesias; you do not choose painted figs, but real ones; and yet you pass over the true training and would apply yourself to written rules” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 48). In reconstructing Diogenes’ ethical model, then, the life he lived is as much his philosophical work as any texts he may have composed.

Table of Contents

  1. Life
  2. Philosophical Practice: A Socrates Gone Mad
  3. References and Further Reading

1. Life

The exceptional nature of Diogenes’ life generates some difficulty for determining the exact events that comprise it. He was a citizen of Sinope who either fled or was exiled because of a problem involving the defacing of currency. Thanks to numismatic evidence, the adulteration of Sinopean coinage is one event about which there is certainty. The details of the defacing, though, are murkier: “Diocles relates that [Diogenes] went into exile because his father was entrusted with the money of the state and adulterated the coinage. But Eubulides in his book on Diogenes says that Diogenes himself did this and was forced to leave home along with his father” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 20). Whether it was Diogenes or his father who defaced the currency, and for whatever reasons they may have done so, the act lead to Diogenes’ relocation to Athens.

Diogenes’ biography becomes, historically, only sketchier. For example, one story claims that Diogenes was urged by the oracle at Delphi to adulterate the political currency, but misunderstood and defaced the state currency (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 20). A second version tells of Diogenes traveling to Delphi and receiving this same oracle after he had already altered the currency, turning his crime into a calling. It is, finally, questionable whether Diogenes ever consulted the oracle at all; the Delphic advice is curiously close to Socrates’ own injunction, and the interweaving of life and legend in Diogenes’ case is just as substantial.

Once in Athens, Diogenes famously took a tub, or a pithos, for an abode. In Lives of Eminent Philosophers, it is reported that Diogenes “had written to some one to try and procure a cottage for him. When this man was a long time about it, he took for his abode the tub in the Metroön, as he himself explains in his letters” (Diogenes Laertius, Book 6, Chapter 23). Apparently Diogenes discovered that he had no need for conventional shelter or any other “dainties” from having watched a mouse. The lesson the mouse teaches is that he is capable of adapting himself to any circumstance. This adaptability is the origin of Diogenes’ legendary askēsis, or training.

Diogenes Laertius reports that Diogenes of Sinope “fell in” with Antisthenes who, though not in the habit of taking students, was worn out by Diogenes’ persistence (Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 22). Although this account has been met with suspicion, especially given the likely dates of Diogenes’ arrival in Athens and Antisthenes’ death, it supports the perception that the foundation of Diogenes’ philosophical practice rests with Antisthenes.

Another important, though possibly invented, episode in Diogenes’ life centers around his enslavement in Corinth after having been captured by pirates. When asked what he could do, he replied “Govern men,” which is precisely what he did once bought by Xeniades. He was placed in charge of Xeniades’ sons, who learned to follow his ascetic example. One story tells of Diogenes’ release after having become a cherished member of the household, another claims Xeniades freed him immediately, and yet another maintains that he grew old and died at Xeniades’ house in Corinth. Whichever version may be true (and, of course, they all could be false), the purpose is the same: Diogenes the slave is freer than his master, who he rightly convinces to submit to his obedience.

Though most accounts agree that he lived to be quite old— some suggesting he lived until ninety— the tales of Diogenes’ death are no less multiple than those of his life. The possible cause of death includes a voluntary demise by holding his breath, an illness brought on by eating raw octopus, or death by dog bite. Given the embellished feel of each of these reports, it is more likely that he died of old age.

2. Philosophical Practice: A Socrates Gone Mad

When Plato is asked what sort of man Diogenes is, he responds, “A Socrates gone mad” (Diogenes Laertius, Book 6, Chapter 54). Plato’s label is representative, for Diogenes’ adaptation of Socratic philosophy has frequently been regarded as one of degradation. Certain scholars have understood Diogenes as an extreme version of Socratic wisdom, offering a fascinating, if crude, moment in the history of ancient thought, but which ought not to be confused with the serious business of philosophy. This reading is influenced by the mixture of shamelessness and askēsis which riddle Diogenes’ biography. This understanding, though, overlooks the centrality of reason in Diogenes’ practice.

Diogenes’ sense of shamelessness is best seen in the context of Cynicism in general. Specifically, though, it stems from a repositioning of convention below nature and reason. One guiding principle is that if an act is not shameful in private, that same act is not made shameful by being performed in public. For example, it was contrary to Athenian convention to eat in the marketplace, and yet there he would eat for, as he explained when reproached, it was in the marketplace that he felt hungry. The most scandalous of these sorts of activities involves his indecent behavior in the marketplace, to which he responded “he wished it were as easy to relieve hunger by rubbing an empty stomach” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 46).

He is labeled mad for acting against convention, but Diogenes points out that it is the conventions which lack reason: “Most people, he would say, are so nearly mad that a finger makes all the difference. For if you go along with your middle finger stretched out, some one will think you mad, but, if it’s the little finger, he will not think so” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 35). In these philosophical fragments, reason clearly has a role to play. There is a report that Diogenes “would continually say that for the conduct of life we need right reason or a halter” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 24). For Diogenes, each individual should either allow reason to guide her conduct, or, like an animal, she will need to be lead by a leash; reason guides one away from mistakes and toward the best way in which to live life. Diogenes, then, does not despise knowledge as such, but despises pretensions to knowledge that serve no purpose.

He is especially scornful of sophisms. He disproves an argument that a person has horns by touching his forehead, and in a similar manner, counters the claim that there is no such thing as motion by walking around. He elsewhere disputes Platonic definitions and from this comes one of his more memorable actions: “Plato had defined the human being as an animal, biped and featherless, and was applauded. Diogenes plucked a fowl and brought it into the lecture-room with the words, ‘Here is Plato’s human being.’ In consequence of which there was added to the definition, ‘having broad nails’” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 40). Diogenes is a harsh critic of Plato, regularly disparaging Plato’s metaphysical pursuits and thereby signaling a clear break from primarily theoretical ethics.

Diogenes’ talent for undercutting social and religious conventions and subverting political power can tempt readers into viewing his position as merely negative. This would, however, be a mistake. Diogenes is clearly contentious, but he is so for the sake of promoting reason and virtue. In the end, for a human to be in accord with nature is to be rational, for it is in the nature of a human being to act in accord with reason. Diogenes has trouble finding such humans, and expresses his sentiments regarding his difficulty theatrically. Diogenes is reported to have “lit a lamp in broad daylight and said, as he went about, ‘I am searching for a human being’” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 41).

For the Cynics, life in accord with reason is lived in accord with nature, and therefore life in accord with reason is greater than the bounds of convention and the polis. Furthermore, the Cynics claim that such a life is the life worth living. As a homeless and penniless exile, Diogenes experienced the greatest misfortunes of which the tragedians write, and yet he insisted that he lived the good life: “He claimed that to fortune he could oppose courage, to convention nature, to passion reason” (Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers, Book 6, Chapter 38).
Source: http://www.iep.utm.edu/diogsino/




A philosopher who practised what he professed.  It would be interesting to see how many modern day academic philosophers also put their Beliefs into Practice.


Check out some of the other entries from the 'Men of Yore' series:


[End.]

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Havamal Snippets 75: Love of money turns a man into a fool

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).

Many men become fools through their love of money (money is just something that other people value.  It has little value in itself, and derives much value because people want it.  A stack of thousand dollar notes means little to a hunter-gatherer in the jungle, though it is good for starting fires.)

75
Veita hinn
er vættki veit
margr verðr af aurum api
maðr er auðigr
annarr óauðigr
skylit þann vítka vár

He does not know,
he who knows nothing:
many a man becomes a fool through ores [money];
one man is rich,
another poor;
he must not blame his woe on him.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Men Being Herded Out of the Public Realm:

Rural American-Indians were herded off into the reservation
and
Married Western men are herded off into the garage.

One thing that you'll notice in is that the more feminised an area gets (either a house or a country) the more men get herded into progressively smaller and smaller areas. In the case of the rural American-Indians they were hounded and put into reservations. And in the case of married men they get hounded and after a while all their possessions end up in a man-cave in either 1) the garage, or 2) into a single drawer. This is what happens whenever a woman (or women collectively, or indeed, female instinct - which is also present in men) get the upper hand in (be it in society or a household): they progressively force men out of the public realm and into a small area that can be easily controlled and monitored. It's the female dream which is synchronistic with the 'Totalitarian State' (aka Big Mother, a more accurate description of Big Brother, credit to Ryu).

If you want to avoid getting all of your possessions harried into a single room of your house then learn how to keep hold of the reigns of power. You can do this by making choices instead of deferring to your spouse or letting her have the final say. You could also go on the offensive as X-Splat seems to do when he deals with his spouse and her choice of clothing:
It’s the man’s job to ensure the woman wears a proper housewife uniform around the house.

If she keep putting on the trash, take it off her and cut it up with scissors in front of her.

And tell her what to wear.

My girl occasionally backslides and I ask her “go get me the scissors”. She knows it’s no bluff, so she changes. (Source: http://xsplat.wordpress.com/2012/04/22/men-dont-realize-they-are-feminists/)

Or if for whatever reason you do not want to compete for power then stay single.


[End.]

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Havamal Snippets 74: Be prepared

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).


Be prepared for the unexpected (as best you can), within reasonable parameters e.g. there's no need to pack snow shoes for a vacation in Florida where the temperative may only fluctuate by 10 degrees, not 50.

74
Nótt verðr feginn
sá er nesti trúir
skammar ro skips rár
hverf er haustgríma
fjölð um viðrir
á fimm dögum
en meira á mánuði

He becomes happy at night
who trusts his journey-provisions;
a ship's sailyards are short;
an autumn-night is changeable.
The weather changes in many ways
in five days,
and more in a month.

Friday, 19 July 2013

Men of Yore: Samuel Colt

This is another in a series of posts about men from history who have either achieved great things in one form or another by pushing boundaries: either in themselves or in society or science or exploration of some form.  Boundary pushing and growth is what men do, it's their nature: to grow and push outwards.  We, as men, are the frontiers men, the first to discover/uncover new territory, in a metaphysical sense (i.e. including both material and the immaterial) that is later colonised and 'civilised' by the rest of humanity. 

It is also partly intended to show images, be they paintings, statues or photographs of the countenaces of men of yore.  Because, quite frankly, many men wear the countenances of women these days: smiling, smirking, cooing, rolling their eyes, looking smug etc.  It's a sign of the times, and by showing some images of men from the past, I hope to show some modern men why looking surly, frowning and giving hard-ball stares at people is something to do, something to practice.



Samuel Colt, 1857 (aged 43)



Samuel Colt (July 19, 1814 – January 10, 1862) was an American inventor and industrialist from Hartford, Connecticut. He was the founder of Colt's Patent Fire-Arms Manufacturing Company (now known as Colt's Manufacturing Company), and made the mass-production of the revolver commercially viable for the first time. 

Colt's first two business ventures ended in disappointment. His first attempt at manufacturing firearms in Paterson, New Jersey, occurred during an economic crisis in the US leading to poor sales, and was further hampered by his mismanagement and reckless spending. His next attempt at arms making, underwater mines for the US Navy, failed due to lack of US Congressional support. After the Texas Rangers ordered 1,000 of his revolvers during the American war with Mexico in 1847, his business expanded rapidly. His factory in Hartford built the guns used as sidearms by both the North and the South in the American Civil War, and later his firearms were credited in taming the western frontier. A second plant in London closed after four years because of poor sales to the British military. 

Colt died in 1862, before the end of the Civil War, as one of the wealthiest men in America. The company he founded is still in business as of 2013. In 1867, his widow, Elizabeth Jarvis Colt, commissioned the building of the Church of the Good Shepherd in Hartford as a memorial to him and is on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2006, Colt was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. 

Colt's manufacturing methods, directed at beating his competition, were at the forefront of the Industrial Revolution. He was one of the first industrialists to successfully employ the assembly line due to his use of interchangeable parts. Beyond building arms, his innovative use of art, celebrity endorsements and corporate gifts to promote his wares made him a pioneer in the fields of advertising, product placement and mass marketing. He received criticism during his lifetime and after his death for promoting his arms through bribes, threats and monopoly. Historians have stated that his patents acted as an impediment to arms production during his lifetime, and that his personal vanity kept his own company from being able to produce a cartridge firearm until 10 years after his death when a patent, filed by a gunsmith he had fired, Rollin White, expired in 1872. 

[...]
Early years
Samuel Colt was born in Hartford, Connecticut, to Christopher Colt, a farmer who had moved his family to Hartford after he became a businessman, and Sarah Colt née Caldwell. His mother's father, Major John Caldwell,[2] had been an officer in the Continental Army and one of Samuel's earliest possessions was his maternal grandfather's flintlock pistol. Sarah Colt died from tuberculosis before Samuel was seven years old. Christopher Colt was remarried two years later to Olivia Sargeant. Samuel had three sisters, one of whom died in childhood. His oldest sister, Margaret, died of tuberculosis at 19 and the other, Sarah Ann, committed suicide later in life. His brother, James Colt became a lawyer and his brother, Christopher was a textile merchant. His brother John Colt was a man of many occupations, killed a creditor in 1841 in New York City, was found guilty of the murder, and committed suicide on the day of execution.

At age 11, Colt was indentured to a farmer in Glastonbury, Germany|Glastonbury, where he did chores and attended school. Here he was introduced to the Compendium of Knowledge, a scientific encyclopedia that he preferred to read rather than his Bible studies. Its articles on Robert Fulton and gunpowder motivated Colt throughout his life. He discovered that other inventors in the Compendium had accomplished things that were once deemed impossible, and he wanted to do the same. Later, after hearing soldiers talk about the success of the Double rifle double-barreled rifle and the impossibility of a gun that could shoot five or six times without reloading, Colt decided that he would create the "impossible gun".

In 1829, at the age of 15, Colt began working in his father's textile plant in Ware, Massachusetts, where he had access to tools, materials, and the factory workers' expertise. Following the encyclopedia, Samuel built a homemade galvanic cell and advertised as a Fourth of July event in that year that he would blow up a raft on Ware Pond using underwater explosives; although the raft was missed, the explosion was still impressive.[3] Sent to boarding school, he amused his classmates with pyrotechnics. In 1830, a July 4 accident caused a fire that ended his schooling, and his father then sent him off to learn the seaman's trade.[3] On a voyage to Calcutta on board the brig Corvo, he noticed that regardless of which way the ship's wheel was spun, each spoke always came in direct line with a clutch that could be set to hold it. He later said that this gave him the idea for the revolver. On the Corvo, Colt made a wooden model of a pepperbox revolver out of scrap wood. It differed from other pepperbox revolvers at the time in that it would allow the shooter to rotate the cylinder by the action of cocking the hammer and a pawl locking the cylinder in place, rather than rotating the barrels by hand and hoping for proper indexing and alignment.

Colt conceived of himself as a man of science and thought if he could enlighten people about a new idea like nitrous oxide, he could in turn make people more receptive to his new idea concerning a revolver. He started his lectures on street corners and soon worked his way up to lecture halls and museums. As ticket sales declined, Colt realized that "serious" museum lectures were not what the people wanted to pay money to see and that it was dramatic stories of salvation and redemption the public craved. While visiting his brother, John, in Cincinnati, he partnered with sculptor, Hiram Powers, for his demonstrations with a theme based on The Divine Comedy. Powers made detailed wax sculptures and paintings based on demons, centaurs and mummies from Dante. Colt constructed fireworks to complete the show, which was a success

Colt's early revolver
Colt's great contribution was to the use of interchangeable parts. Knowing that some gun parts were made by machine, he envisioned that all the parts on every Colt gun to be interchangeable and made by machine, later to be assembled by hand. His goal was the assembly line.

Marketing
When foreign heads of state would not grant him an audience, as he was only a private citizen, he persuaded the governor of the state of Connecticut make him a lieutenant colonel and aide-de-camp in the state militia. With this rank, he toured Europe again to promote his revolvers.[53] He used marketing techniques which were innovative at the time. He frequently gave custom engraved versions of his revolvers, to heads of state, military officers, and personalities such as Giuseppe Garibaldi, King Victor Emmanuel II of Italy, and Hungarian freedom fighter Lajos Kossuth.[54] Colt commissioned western artist George Catlin to produce a series of paintings depicting exotic scenes in which a Colt weapon was prominently used against Indians, wild animals, or bandits in the earliest form of "product placement".[55] He placed numerous advertisements in the same newspapers; The Knickerbocker ran as many as eight in the same edition. Lastly, he hired authors to write stories about his guns for magazines and travel guides.[40] One of Colt's biggest acts of self-promotion was the payment to the publishers of United States Magazine $1,120 ($61,439 by 1999 standards) to run a 29-page fully illustrated story showing the inner workings of his factory.[31]

After his revolvers had gained acceptance, Colt looked for unsolicited news stories containing mention of his guns that he could excerpt and reprint. He went so far as to hire agents in other states and territories to find such samples, to buy hundreds of copies for himself and to give the editor a free revolver for writing them, particularly if such a story disparaged his competition.[31] Many of the revolvers Colt gave away as "gifts" had inscriptions such as "Compliments of Col. Colt" or "From the Inventor" engraved on the back straps. Later versions contained his entire signature which was used in many of his advertisements as a centerpiece, using his celebrity to guarantee the performance of his weapons. Colt eventually secured a trademark for his signature.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Colt



If you've got a good idea that you want other people to know about then you need to be able to communicate it. In human and immediate terms this means using your mouth to speak; but the bigger and more complex a society gets the bigger and more elaborate your means of communication needs to be. So in the case of Samuel Colt, he moved up from using his mouth to using 'marketing' in order to sell his message.

While I'm not keen on the notion of 'marketing', 'publicity' and 'selling yourself' because it seems ignoble to me (after all, you're shouting about how good your product is), marketing is certainly necessary if someone wants other people to believe their idea or buy their product. If Samuel Colt hadn't done that then no one would've bought his gun. If Louis Pasteur didn't publicise his knowledge then no one would've known about germ theory. If Henry Bessemer hadn't shared his knowledge, then no one wouldn've known about smelting methods; and so on. Without men speaking out about what they know humanity would not advance. It's no good having ground-breaking knowledge if it's going to remain hidden on a dusty bookshelf somewhere. The only way it can have an impact, have an effect, is if it is communicated, and some times that means marketing and publicity.

Vulture of Critique has highlighted this when he discussed 'debating' and that if you want to win a debate then you need to tailor your approach to your audience, of which there are two kinds:
- the cerebral kind (like introverts and mathematicians) who use reason to win the argument.
- the physical kind (like extroverts and television celebrities) who use 'glitz and glamour' to win the argument.


Check out some of the other entries from the 'Men of Yore' series:


[End.]

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Havamal Snippets 73: Use a tongue for destroying minds, swords for the body

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).

Be-ware of an unleashed tongue, for it can do more harm to a man's mind than an unleashed sword.  The dualistic prinicple is again demonstrated in this staza: mind and body; destroy the mind with words, destroy the body with swords.

73
Tveir ro eins herjar
tunga er höfuðs bani
er mér í heðin hvern
handar væni

Two men are the destroyers of one:
the tongue is the head's slayer;
[4] I expect a fist
[3] in every fur cloak.

Monday, 15 July 2013

From the Cradle to Beyond the Grave:

From the Cradle to Beyond the Grave:


The default position of the State is now to OWN your body.  Your personal views are secondary to the State.  The State does not care about your views or beliefs, all it cares about is owning your body and owning your mind.  To this end it will do anything.  And there is no end for what the State wants to do other than Owning everything, having Dominion over everything.  Ymir has nothing on the tyranny of the British State; At least Ymir actually created something (the race of Frost Giants - unchanging things), the state cannot even do that, all it does is consume other things and want more and more power. Dominion is the goal of the State.


[End.]

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Havamal Snippets 72: Better late than never

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).

Better late than never at all.  Better a late fatherhood than none at all.  Better a late new-thinker than none at all.  Whether you're forty, fifty, sixty years old being a father now is better than being no father at all.  A father to a new son (genetic legacy) or to a new idea/way of thinking (memetic legacy).


72
Sonr er betri
þótt sé síð of alinn
eptir genginn guma
sjaldan bautarsteinar
standa brautu nær
nema reisi niðr at nið

A son is better,
though he be late-begotten,
after a man is gone;
memorial stones seldom
stand by the road
unless a kinsman should raise [them] to kin.

Havamal Snippets 71: Respect all men, see the good in them

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).


Words to live by.  Have respect for all men.  Whether he is less-abled than other men in some regards, he is still useful.  Stephen Hawking proves this theory.  See the good in a man, and a the good that he can do, rather than let your view be dominated by his in-abilities.

71
Haltr ríðr hrossi
hjörð rekr handarvanr
daufr vegr ok dugir
blindr er betri
en brenndr sé
nýtr manngi nás

The lame man rides a horse,
the one-armed man drives the herd,
the deaf man fights and is useful;
it is better to be blind
than burnt:
no-one is helped by a corpse.

Friday, 12 July 2013

Men of Yore: Joseph Bazalgette

This is another in a series of posts about men from history who have either achieved great things in one form or another by pushing boundaries: either in themselves or in society or science or exploration of some form.  Boundary pushing and growth is what men do, it's their nature: to grow and push outwards.  We, as men, are the frontiers men, the first to discover/uncover new territory, in a metaphysical sense (i.e. including both material and the immaterial) that is later colonised and 'civilised' by the rest of humanity. 

It is also partly intended to show images, be they paintings, statues or photographs of the countenaces of men of yore.  Because, quite frankly, many men wear the countenances of women these days: smiling, smirking, cooing, rolling their eyes, looking smug etc.  It's a sign of the times, and by showing some images of men from the past, I hope to show some modern men why looking surly, frowning and giving hard-ball stares at people is something to do, something to practice.


Joseph Bazalgette

Sir Joseph William Bazalgette, CB (28 March 1819 – 15 March 1891) was a 19th-century English civil engineer. As chief engineer of London's Metropolitan Board of Works his major achievement was the creation (in response to the "Great Stink" of 1858) of a sewer network for central London which was instrumental in relieving the city from cholera epidemics, while beginning the cleansing of the River Thames.

Beginnings[edit]

Joseph William Bazalgette was born at Hill Lodge, Clay Hill, Enfield, London, the son of Joseph William Bazalgette (1783–1849), a retired Royal Navy captain, and Theresa Philo, née Pilton (1796–1850), and was the grandson of a French Protestant immigrant.

He began his career working on railway projects, articled to noted engineer Sir John MacNeill and gaining sufficient experience (some in Ireland) in land drainage and reclamation works for him to set up his own London consulting practice in 1842. By the time he married in 1845, Bazalgette was deeply involved in the expansion of the railway network, working so hard that he suffered a nervous breakdown two years later.
While he was recovering, London's short-lived Metropolitan Commission of Sewers ordered that all cesspits should be closed and that house drains should connect to sewers and empty into the Thames. As a result, a cholera epidemic (1848–49) killed 14,137 Londoners.

Bazalgette was appointed assistant surveyor to the Commission in 1849, taking over as Engineer in 1852, after his predecessor died of "harassing fatigues and anxieties." Soon after, another cholera epidemic struck, in 1853, killing 10,738. Medical opinion at the time held that cholera was caused by foul air: a so-called miasma. Physician Dr John Snow had earlier advanced a different explanation, which is now known to be correct: cholera was spread by contaminated water. His view was not then generally accepted.

Championed by fellow engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Bazalgette was appointed chief engineer of the Commission's successor, the Metropolitan Board of Works, in 1856 (a post which he retained until the MBW was abolished and replaced by the London County Council in 1889). In 1858, the year of the Great Stink, Parliament passed an enabling act, in spite of the colossal expense of the project, and Bazalgette's proposals to revolutionise London's sewerage system began to be implemented. The expectation was that enclosed sewers would eliminate the stink ('miasma'), and that this would then reduce the incidence of cholera.

Sewer Works
At the time, the Thames was little more than an open sewer, devoid of any fish or other wildlife, and an obvious health hazard to Londoners. Bazalgette's solution (similar to a proposal made by painter John Martin 25 years earlier) was to construct 82 miles (132 km) of underground brick main sewers to intercept sewage outflows, and 1,100 miles (1,800 km) of street sewers, to intercept the raw sewage which up until then flowed freely through the streets and thoroughfares of London. The outflows were diverted downstream where they were dumped, untreated, into the Thames. Extensive sewage treatment facilities were built only decades later[clarify].
The scheme involved major pumping stations at Deptford (1864) and at Crossness (1865) on the Erith marshes, both on the south side of the Thames, and at Abbey Mills (in the River Lea valley, 1868) and on the Chelsea Embankment (close to Grosvenor Bridge; 1875), north of the river.
The system was opened by Edward, Prince of Wales in 1865, although the whole project was not actually completed for another ten years.
Bazalgette's foresight may be seen in the diameter of the sewers. When planning the network he took the densest population, gave every person the most generous allowance of sewage production and came up with a diameter of pipe needed. He then said 'Well, we're only going to do this once and there's always the unforeseen' and doubled the diameter to be used. His foresight allowed for the unforeseen increase in population density with the introduction of the tower block; with the original, smaller pipe diameter the sewer would have overflowed in the 1960s, rather than coping until the present day as it has.
The unintended consequence of the new sewer system was to eliminate cholera not only in places that no longer stank, but wherever water supplies ceased to be contaminated by sewage. The basic premise of this expensive project, that miasma spread cholera infection, was wrong; however, instead of this causing the project to fail, the new sewers succeeded in virtually eliminating the disease by removing the contamination.
Bazalgette's capacity for hard work was remarkable; every connection to the sewerage system by the various Vestry Councils had to be checked and Bazalgette did this himself and the records contain thousands of linen tracings with handwritten comments in Indian ink on them "Approved JWB" "I do not like 6" used here and 9" should be used. JWB" and so on. It is perhaps not surprising that his health suffered as a result. The records are held by Thames Water in large blue binders gold-blocked reading "Metropolitan Board of Works" and then dated, usually two per year
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Bazalgette


A flushing toilet and a waste water system are something that we may take for granted in the modern world, but without revolutionary thinking and engingeering by men such as Bazalgette these sewerage systems would never have been constructed, and instead we would all still be using cess pits and 'night soil men'.

The notetworthy aspect of Bazalgettes thinking was his foresight, his ability to think ahead and ask 'what if'.  What if the population density of London increased beyond what current technology allows, would my sewerage system be able to cope with it?  He asked these questions and by asking these questions it meant that his system designed during the Victorian era has lasted for ~150 years and has not had to be massively overhauled.  That is excellent foresight.  The ability to see into the future, have one eye on the future, just like Odin when he dropped his eye into the well of Mimir so that he could gain knowledge of the future.


Check out some of the other entries from the 'Men of Yore' series:


[End.]

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Havamal Snippets 70: Better to be alive than dead

This is one in a series of very short posts containing snippets from the Havamal text (which can be found in full here - http://www.beyondweird.com/high-one.html)

Why post snippets of an old pagan text here, in a blog that's supposedly about the Androsphere?  I’m posting them because they contain helpful everyday advice that is applicable in the modern world e.g. being aware of your surrounding environment, drinking alcohol responsibly, how to score with women.  And for many of us, it is part of our heritage that goes back to Proto-Indo-European (PIE) beliefs that stretch back 4000 years or more.

Christianity and demi-nihilism offer the only other dominant philosophical view points in the Androsphere, the former represented by bloggers like Vox Day and Simon Grey, the latter by many PUA bloggers.  Christianity, and indeed the other monotheisms from the region draw, from the mythologies of the PIE culture.  For instance Noah’s flood is a replication of the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the story of the Angels rebelling against God in the bible is just a copy of the Giants rebelling against the Gods, which is present in both the Greek and Norse religious traditions, as Arthur Schopenhauer pointed out in the eighteenth century.

So, instead of offering you snippets of second-hand wisdom from the Bible, I will offer you snippets of first-hand wisdom from the (probably) older and much more concise Havamal text (roughly 5,000 words compared to the 190,000 words of the New Testament).

(My own thoughts/comments are in italics).

Better to be alive than dead.

70
Betra er lifðum
en sé ólifðum
ey getr kvikr kú
eld sá ek upp brenna
auðgum manni fyrir
en úti var dauðr fyr durum

It is better for the living
than for the dead, *
the living man always gets the cow;
I saw the fire burn up
before a rich man,
but death was outside the door.