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Love/Hate, A Thesis in progress

by battenj 

Posted: 03 October 2003
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The tie-in with the works of Aristotle, and Edmund Spenser etc.. cinch this thesis and provide the necessary link with existing works. Now it is just a matter of working out the format, and wrapping a flowing explanation around the raw bits. The full selfish/unselfish spectrum chart as well as the Socratic debate re: when it's ok to stand up for yourself will be forthcoming.

I have given this to my son and daughter as well as all of our children as a present already. The nature of it is such that to not help you is to hurt you. The '42' approach (Hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy) is the correct one. We have been framing the question wrong.

Love is selflessness in all of its forms
Hate is selfishness in all of its forms

There are 2 'tool bags' to draw from: Love, and Hate.

Evolution has hardwired us to respond to an instinct to survive (Selfishness). It has also provided us the capacity to invoke all of it's counterparts as well (Selflessness). We are born inherently neutral. It is out of necessity that we adopt various tools out of the selfishness tool bag. We are also hardwired to explore, exploration of chemicals is a particular fascination of ours. It is through this exploration that we understand the complete aspects of all of our emotions (chemical reactions). We are judged by how we process and react to our chemicals. We make our mistakes based on our lack of understanding of others, and ourselves. The hardest lessons to understand are the ones that come from a lack of understanding on the part of others. This is due to our 'assumed superiority' drive (survival instinct), which comes in our selfishness tool bag. Tools from the selfishness tool bag have a progressively darker color to them. They cloud our judgment. Tools from the Selflessness tool bag however dispel the darkness (Provides Clarity). Absolution is one of the tools in Loveís toolbag. It is what 'wipes the slate clean' and allows us to release the pressures of responsibility for our mistakes. Survival also dictates that we persevere. We can only survive as a species intact if we work together for common goals. We must agree on basics to accomplish this.

Other than being born neutral, there is no neutral. This is what gets us in trouble. Absolution is forgiveness and is definitely in Love's Arsenal. It's the light that Love provides which creates the shadows and makes hate impossible to not see or ignore. I am not helping you by ignoring you (Neutrality). We must be able to rely on each other to a minimum degree. How fine does the decimal point need to be? It's still there.

Human beings are naturally bi-polar (i.e. left brain and right brain, selfish/unselfish). These 2 sides of our personalities must remain in balance. When we cannot reconcile the 2 sides we sense the conflict and recognize it as a 'problem'. We face problems all around us. It is how we deal with them that we are judged. Human beings have equal parts emotion (imagination) and rationality (left brain/right brain). The way we perceive our surroundings and the angle at which we are approaching a problem becomes evident in our decisions. For example: When you 'give up' on someone you may have done so for a variety of reasons - 'they were too much work', 'you can't help those who refuse to help themselves', 'if they aren't willing to put forth any effort, why should I?' and so on... All of these answers come from a selfish standpoint in some shape form or fashion. The opposite side of this same coin would be to take the 'To not help is to hurt', or 'If not me who?', approach and so on... These answers come from the unselfish hemisphere. The way a person rationalizes, is a clear indicator of which hemisphere they are operating in at the moment.

Sometimes people learn their lessons the hard way, sometimes they see the roadblocks in advance and swerve. The critical point seems to be in the fact that you are allowed to warn those around you, as well as having a responsibility to warn those whom you claim alliance with. If the people then knowingly chose to learn their lessons the hard way, you are 'standing in the way of progress' by trying to stop them. We each travel our journeys in our own way. As long as everyone reaches the destination then everything will be fine.

Not sure if this is unique to the male of the species; however we possess the ability to 'turn off', 'switch off', 'completely ignore' our emotions. I assume this is due to our predisposition for survival and what little boys love so much - playing hide and go seek (Hunter Gatherer) or playing soldier (war, survival of the fittest typically except in those rare cases when humanity benefits [US Civil War, India's independence (still needs some work there), The latest war in Iraq and so on... In times of crisis our 'override' buttons kick in, this is how soldiers can remain in a 'hot zone' for long periods of time. I submit that this mechanism can be turned off completely for indefinite numbers of years focusing the brains activities in only rational side processing.
There is a direct co-relation between physical exercise of a certain side of the body and the left brain/right brain growth/maturity. To test this theory, I purposely played handball with my 'dead' half (left hand) for several hours. The following day I experienced a form of headache that could only be described as a 'sore muscle' headache. I detected a sharp increase in creative functions as well as emotional awareness immediately thereafter. I am not making this stuff up :) This is why physical exercise and success often go hand-in-hand.

Not sure if this is unique to the male of the species, and doubt it; however we possess the ability to 'turn off', 'switch off', 'completely ignore' our emotions. I assume this is due to our predisposition for survival and what boys love so much - playing hide and go seek (Hunter Gatherer) or playing soldier (Practicing our skills at overcoming each other, selfish/survival of the fittest hemisphere functions (Strong tendencies for extreme 'right handedness')). In times of crisis our 'override' buttons kick in, this is how soldiers can remain in a 'hot zone' for long periods of time. I submit that this mechanism can be turned off completely for indefinite numbers of years focusing the brains activities in only rational side processing.
We are all empathic to a degree (I suspect it depends on the growth level of the emotional hemisphere of the brain). We have the ability to detect emotions and recreate them within ourselves based on the smallest of macro-gestures, breathing responses etc.. This ability coupled with understanding motivations based on interpretations of rationalities gives us the ability to read and verify our fellow man to a degree, which is scary (with power comes responsibility). I have been playing with the word 'transparent' (98+% accuracy ratings so far) over the last several weeks.
We draw 'lines in the sand' all around ourselves. Where we draw those lines depends on which hemisphere we are operating in. What we judge people on is based on where we think lines are appropriate. More often than not, the person being judged doesn't know where your lines are. The way to judge whether your lines are drawn in the appropriate place is to gauge which hemisphere (Selfish/Unselfish) are you operating in and how deep within that hemisphere you are when you drew those lines in the first place? Transparent......
Below is an example of being able to accurately spot the survival rationality/selfish hemisphere at work. In this case the angle of approach is one of prejudism. Things in the selfish hemisphere 'cast a shadow' when the light of the unselfish hemisphere is applied allowing you to pinpoint the motivation.

I finally figured out how to express what bothers me about the supposition that a Southerner would find it harder to survive in the North than Vice-Versa. My friend called this morning, I asked her if a black man from nowhere, no pace, little general education systems, Nairobi would survive once he got off the boat in Ellis Island? She replied 'Of Course'. I asked her why she wasn't willing to give Southerners the same respect.

When dealing with the world we must deal with our own bipolar natures. We must also deal with the bipolar nature of our mate who is likely to be operating from a completely different hemisphere. Opposites attract for a reason, it is to resolve our bipolar 'problems'. This is the purpose/problem with marriages. We either grow old and become wise (redraw our lines much closer to center), or we become bitter (Our lines and grudges have remained draw and fixed in selfish hemisphere never to be resolved and always to be remembered every time someone else in our lives pushes the same button (activates a chemical with the same or similarí flavor' - We can sort through our memories/chemicals/tastes/flavors/sights etc.. like a database searching for like fields. They are all 'chemical flavors' and cocktails after all). It is like recognizing the potato flavor within the stew.

Below is a response to what I typically perceive as a 'male bashing' email. Or the other side of the coin would look at it as a 'blowing off frustration' email. In my response I attempt to reconcile the 2 sides of the issue and point out the dual/quad nature of life.

Hilarious!!! Thanks!!!!!!!!!! It adds credence to some things I have been thinking about hehe Men are like ... Lava Lamps ... Fun to look at, but not very bright. Arenít we allowed to at least have a little dignity though? We ainít all bad :) Or as I like to look at it, Your kinda stuck with us, besides aren't we all the result of how well our mother's raised us? We are all a mother's son :) You all have to share in the responsibility too :)with the greatest and most sincere love,

For all practical purposes, we pick the lessons we want to learn/must learn to survive.. We do this in the form of relationships, job decisions etc.. The decisions we make reflect our understanding of the problems we are facing. Many times we underestimate the strength and addictive power of the chemicals (emotional and physical) we have decided to tangle with. The key is to remember that you are allowed to tell those around you what the lesson will be 'in advance' so they will be better able to deal with it and recognize when it has control of them and to recognize that sometimes if you are stopping someone from learning the lesson you may be standing in the way of progress. The seeds we plant today are what sustain our children through the hard times. Love is the most difficult chemical of all to 'taste' because we have to override our very survival instinct to truly find it (Absolution/Forgiveness is one of it's tools).

Bi-Polar resolution example:

Example - 'I've been 'on the wagon', 'in the wagon', 'under the wagon', 'fell off the wagon', and damned if I didn't get hit by the wagon coming up from behind.

Good - Did you learn?

Example - Yes

Good - Good Human

It is the combination of masculine/feminine personality aspects coupled with our need to resolve certain chemical cravings (ie what love tastes like, survival etc..) that creates a quad nature to our existance. It is the 4th coordinate that causes all of the problems and feeds all of the solutions, which drive humanity. This is the coordinate, which feeds our imaginations. I like to describe the physical? Location of pure love using the following coordinates: w,x,y,z as 0,0,0,0
The major pieces are in place :) Thanks for your patience :)

We trade work for reward in order to survive and provide for our families and ourselves as best we can. We inherently know which hemisphere this instinct operates in and try to compensate for it through our rationalizing sometimes by invoking the 4th dimension ie paranormal pieces (left and right). We have the ability to shield ourselves from ourselves (turn off the chemicals), the unselfish counterpart to this inherent survival mechanism is a sublime one - absolution. This is the realm religion operates in and why it works.
I have already walked this piece through in my notebook and will play it out for you as soon as the concept completely gels. The Survival-Instinct itself has as a counterpart is the self-defense mechanism. I have compiled a debate showing where this 'razor's edge' is as will share soon :) It revolves around the question of when it is finally ok to stand up for yourself.
Rough guess at this point, however suspicion is that there will be at least 4 primary columns (angles of approach) based on quad nature (2 selfish side, 2 unselfish side).

Who is Paying you to think? The subject above was a common __expression meaning that one should focus their attention on their cog and not worry about the wheel. In a bipolar world I would submit the following answer - No one is paying me to think about the big picture, and they shouldn't have to. Passing on knowledge to those your care about should always be freely required - hehe gotta love the interplays between dichotomies :)

Unselfish side approaches:

Where meek meets grim.
Where the rubber meets the road.
It's a dirty job but someone has to do it.
To not help is to hurt through neglect.

These approaches typically require an iron will to overcome our disappointment etc for the moment and be able to focus on the 'big picture'. It is through the work required to spot where we have drawn our lines wrong and having the strength left to correct them that the idea of redemption comes into play.

Did you learn?
Good Human.
I think the correct term is for the approach I seem to be defining is that we are 'reconciling two opposing dichotomies'. When we work through most (never forget the last coordinate hehe) of life's problems.

Not 100% sure about 'correctness' yet (everything seems to be fitting perfectly though). From my perspective the the legal responsibility shifts at age 18 it's true. I believe it is a lifelong 2-way commitment though. We are never too old to learn or teach, else we are spinning our wheels. When we are bound and determined to learn our '2X4' lessons ourselves (Wham!!!) typically it's becuase we have drawn our lines askew somewhere and no force under hell or creation will be able to deter us from finding it out 'for ourselves'. The only option left for the 'innocent bystanders' is to point out where the line really is and let them find out for themselves. If the right seeds are planted and we have a sense where the line should be we always seem to find a way back it in the end after we recognize the pWHEN THEY ARE GROWN IT'S UP TO THEM CORRECT: ) ?? WITH LOTS OF LOVE

The other end of this spectrum is the concept of 'veto power'. As parents we recognize that we have this ability and have to balance it with nurturing the 'iron wills' in our children which they need to survive (opposing dichotomies!)One way of framing this is through the concept of 'veto power':There are over 500 extremely well informed congress members who all have very smart people working for them and helping them make their decisions. However, there have been times in our history where the most popular idea ever (Flavor of the month) receives the ultimate public support and yet the president exercised his veto power to the consternation of everyone. Not every time did he make the right decision and congress had to invest more time in it (It it's worth doing, it's worth doing right) to see to it that it went through again. However more than once he has been proven correct in the rear view mirror of history. This is the role we have assigned him/her and we expect that person to exercise their power to protect us from ourselves with jealous zeal in the face of all odds. Occasionally they do their jobs. Sometimes it takes us time to recognize it. The thing to remember is that we are 'never to big for our britches' that someone doesn't have veto power over us, even as adults. In the case of adults, we exercise greatest leniency in what we will standby and allow occurring. Justifiably so, the dichotomy here being with the idea of personal freedom to 'learn for ourselves' versus public good.

Have you ever considered the dichotomies inherent in the free trade/economy system? How about Public Domain versus Private Domain? It will throw you for a loop hehe.

It is the leniencies built into a Democratic Republic where everyone understands where 'the rubber meets the road' that guarantees our survival and protects our right to grow as a species :) As President Bush so eloquently stated to the students @ Beijing University (am paraphrasing) 'We don't know why it works, it just does :) He hit the nail on the head and seems to be the embodiment of these ideas in action :) (I suppose I'm prejudiced on this one hehe)

The primary reason the Democratic Republic system works is the idea of checks and balances. This is the piece of the machinery, which resolves the dichotomies by creating a system where they can be recognized and accounted for. (Yeah, I'm prejudiced on this one I apologize :) )
A wonderful example of this type of problem resolution I am describing :). The number of dichotomies it recognizes is awesome. The 'Think Globally, Act Locally' slogan is right on target.

While walking through my neighborhood, I pondered the 'No Soliciting' sign we had at the entrance. I realized that we had essentially set up a firewall behind which we did not want commerce to 'attack us'. (The exceptions being the ones we allow through our firewall ourselves - TV, Radio, Mail, Email, ). We had designated a 'commerce free' zone behind which we might try to relax. Next I pondered Halloween and the lessons it teaches.

A couple of weeks ago I was trying to figure out how to perform CPR on a tangerine tree that my neighbor had given me. I knew it needed fertilizer of some sort, but I am cheap. While wandering through Wal-Mart I saw the bag of citrus fertilizer had been reduced to $5.00 or so and even though I didn't have it to spend I thought 'what the hell'. It is of some worth to note that I had tried once before to grow citrus tress to no avail. I was unable to figure out why because I had an unbelievable growth spurt right before it died the last time I had tried that fertilizer.

After getting the bag of fertilizer home I was glad to find that this bag had included the per tree dosage. I then realized 2 things - A bag of this stuff lasts about a decade (ok maybe a slight exaggeration hehe), and what had happened to my last trees.

At these prices ($20 per tree), I can set up a scavengers Welcome sign in my front yard and teach the values I prefer year round hehe.

We incorporate dichotomies into our machines and our systems so that they will be able to change with us as we reconcile and account for more and more dichotomies.


Living Languages (English)
Living Documents (U.S. Constitution)
Living Govt.'s (US Democratic Republic is example, consider the Dept of Homeland Security which until recently did not exist and will disappear as soon as no longer needed (indefinitely....)

We are living beings, our systems must allow for us to change as needed. They must acknowledge that dichotomies exist.

Dualities express the idea that things have more than one facet.
Dichotomies express the idea that things have more than one properties, and that those properties are equal and opposite. (Immovable object meets unstoppable force (the 4th coordinate))

Our natural tendency is to 'hide' behind different dichotomies. Usually 2 people will recognize that they are both fighting 'different wars' and will either decide to square off and fight it out or go in separate directions. In a good marriage, both entities are committed to reconciling all dichotomies.. This shows up as clear as day in our rationalities.

I'm fairly satisfied with the bulk of it. There is still a lot of 'fleshing out' to be done but it is all fairly apparent at this point. The future will be stranger than we can imagine :)

Socrates, the son of an Athenian sculptor, was born in 469 B.C. He was trained in his father's art, but gave it up early to devote his time to the search for truth and virtue. He took his part as a citizen both in war and peace, and bore the hardships of poverty and a shrewish wife with calm indifference. He did not give formal instruction after the fashion of the other philosophers of his time, but went about engaging people in conversation, seeking, chiefly by questions, to induce his contemporaries, and especially young men, to think clearly and to act reasonably. He made profession of no knowledge except of his own ignorance, and the famous 'Socratic Irony' was shown in his attitude of apparent willingness to learn from anyone who professed to know. The inevitable result of such conversations, however, was the reduction of the would-be instructor to a state either of irritation at the unmasking of his pretensions, or of humility and eagerness to be instructed by his questioner. It was natural that such a habit should create enemies, and Socrates was finally accused of introducing new gods and of corrupting the youth.

Plato - Beginning of his Introductory Note to 'The apology of Socrates'

Have you ever read Homer's 'The Odyssey'? (The journey) It is the story of a mans travels through life. Along the way he acknowledges and recognizes all of his demons (each of the 12 virtues of man as listed by Aristotle). After he has learned all of his lessons, (some he had to learn the hard way (2X4 lesson, Wham!)) He is allowed to return home, where he takes his rightful place. The hero in the story is Odysseus (The Ulysses figure). The personality can best be described in a single phrase, 'where meek meets grim'

By the way, those same 12 virtues are the same listed in the King Arthur legend and are represented by each of the 12 knights in the 12 books of Prince Arthur in the 'Faerie Queen' by Edmund Spenser. I have not correlated them to the 12 disciples but I have a sneaking suspicion that they will match...

I believe that each of those 12 will prove to be the major facets and counterparts of the selfish, and unselfish spectrums I mentioned earlier and contemplate.

Because Socrates was being accused of vague charges ie - 'corrupting the youth', or being 'mentally unstable', or using 'circular logic' (it is only circular logic in the mind of the person who refuses to yield to the truth because their minds twist the logic back around in a vain attempt to recolor it to suit their needs). He was forced to act as both the prosecutor and the defense lawyer. He was also being forced to operate under a cloud of presumed guilt instead of presumed innocence. The court sentenced him to death by poison although his arguments would have otherwise been sufficient to acquit him in any other age of reason. When his friends begged him to flee from the punishment, Socrates reasoned that he had profited through the system while a citizen therefore although his punishment was unjust, he accepted it as 'part of the roller coaster' of the marriage between a citizen and their city/state.

A good friend of mine, thanked me over and over for helping him over this past weekend. I explained to him that thanks weren't necessary, that this was how friends behaved, and still he wanted me to know how grateful he was. Finally I explained to him that the reason thanks weren't necessary was the same reason that apologies weren't necessary (within your closest circle that is - 'good' friends, family usw.). The reason is because we are able to recognize the humanity (ability to change, learn, and grow) and goodness within those closest to us and have the capacity to accept them and all of their problems. I have been pondering over what I had considered an odd habit of the British. Namely, the tendency to refer to people within their closest circle as a possession. For example One sister talking to another about their brother might say "How is our Richard doing? The use of the word 'our' had puzzled me, until I realized it was a subliminal reinforcement that they are truly 'bound together' and were 'married' in a sense

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Comments by other Members

old friend at 07:55 on 03 October 2003  Report this post
Hello John,

I read your writing (from beginning to end!). I found some parts confusing for I think I may have 'lost' the thread at times with your 'positioning'. However while there is in philosophy a general agreement to meaning of certain phrases and words, there is a dictionary full of words that mean different things to different people and in different circumstances. (reference Dean Inge)
I like your example of this right at the end (the word 'our'...)
How do you intend to use this and is it part of an expanded thesis?
I'm not sure if this site is the most suitable for theses of this nature. However, from the 'writing' point of view I enjoyed it. There are some typos...(example)'Its' before 'counterparts' and may I suggest that a 'trimming' here and there would help the flow.
Anyway, thank you John, it is nice to read something that makes one 'think'.

All success,


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