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traynor
07-24-2013, 10:33 AM
An interesting review of an interesting book.

http://agile.dzone.com/articles/software-development-fast-and

traynor
07-24-2013, 10:40 AM
Major New York Times bestseller
Winner of the National Academy of Sciences Best Book Award in 2012
Selected by the New York Times Book Review as one of the best books of 2011
A Globe and Mail Best Books of the Year 2011 Title
One of The Economist’s 2011 Books of the Year
One of The Wall Street Journal's Best Nonfiction Books of the Year 2011


In the international bestseller, Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, the renowned psychologist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. The impact of overconfidence on corporate strategies, the difficulties of predicting what will make us happy in the future, the profound effect of cognitive biases on everything from playing the stock market to planning our next vacation—each of these can be understood only by knowing how the two systems shape our judgments and decisions


http://www.amazon.com/Thinking-Fast-Slow-Daniel-Kahneman/dp/0374275637

DeltaLover
07-24-2013, 11:45 AM
I have read it, and surely it is one of the most influential writings of our era. Can be seen as an epitome of the behavior economics, a field where the author despite holding a phd in psychology earned a Nobel Price.

Thinking fast and slow should be read in parallel with Malcolm Gladwell's “Blink who seems to hold a controversial view of the topic. Another related book is Black Swan which is also very influential and interesting reading.

Naturally, reading TFAS, I was trying to find applications of its theories to horse betting and gambling in general. Among others, I found quite interesting his example with the fireman trainees and the simple questioner he developed outperforming experienced professionals applying their judgments.

When it comes to software development, of course we have a lot to learn from TFAS.

Most of the times, when we initiate a project, we mostly rely to intuition than in pure logic to derive founding components, usually failing to view the solution from a high level perspective, something that eventually leads to a dead-end as far as the evolution of the system goes and exactly this is the reason why we have so many projects rebuild every 4-5 years.

On the hand, as software architects we are always are facing the possibility of over engineering and even worse perfectionism, factors who are usually responsible for project failures.

I am a firm believer that software development is not a 'pure' engineering domain (at least is not yet one) but instead consists of a combination of science, engineering and art, making talent the most critical component for success.

This is exactly what I was talking about yesterday to a junior colleague of mine, explaining that the most important decision he has to make as a software developer, is to draw the dividing line between abstraction and specializations in any project he is working on.

This is not as simple as it sounds and certainly is extremely important for the quality and expected lifespan of the solution and definitely this type of decisions rely more on talent than in anything else.

Bottom line is, that I think TFAS is a useful reading both for software writers and horse players as it presents a lot of important and though provocative applicable ideas and examples.

Clocker
07-24-2013, 02:44 PM
There is a detailed summary of the book and a video of Charlie Rose's interview of the author HERE. (http://newbooksinbrief.com/2012/11/13/24-a-summary-of-thinking-fast-and-slow-by-daniel-kahneman/)

traynor
07-24-2013, 10:11 PM
I have read it, and surely it is one of the most influential writings of our era. Can be seen as an epitome of the behavior economics, a field where the author despite holding a phd in psychology earned a Nobel Price.

Thinking fast and slow should be read in parallel with Malcolm Gladwell's “Blink who seems to hold a controversial view of the topic. Another related book is Black Swan which is also very influential and interesting reading.

Naturally, reading TFAS, I was trying to find applications of its theories to horse betting and gambling in general. Among others, I found quite interesting his example with the fireman trainees and the simple questioner he developed outperforming experienced professionals applying their judgments.

When it comes to software development, of course we have a lot to learn from TFAS.

Most of the times, when we initiate a project, we mostly rely to intuition than in pure logic to derive founding components, usually failing to view the solution from a high level perspective, something that eventually leads to a dead-end as far as the evolution of the system goes and exactly this is the reason why we have so many projects rebuild every 4-5 years.

On the hand, as software architects we are always are facing the possibility of over engineering and even worse perfectionism, factors who are usually responsible for project failures.

I am a firm believer that software development is not a 'pure' engineering domain (at least is not yet one) but instead consists of a combination of science, engineering and art, making talent the most critical component for success.

This is exactly what I was talking about yesterday to a junior colleague of mine, explaining that the most important decision he has to make as a software developer, is to draw the dividing line between abstraction and specializations in any project he is working on.

This is not as simple as it sounds and certainly is extremely important for the quality and expected lifespan of the solution and definitely this type of decisions rely more on talent than in anything else.

Bottom line is, that I think TFAS is a useful reading both for software writers and horse players as it presents a lot of important and though provocative applicable ideas and examples.

Some day when all the tracks are dark and you have nothing else interesting to do, you might dig a bit into the field of business analysis. The BAs are the linchpins between the IT department and the executives who employ and direct them (through the BAs). It puts software development into a completely different perspective.

Before the first line of code is written, before the first requirement is defined, it is the BAs that are tasked with interpreting the "wants, needs, and fantasies" of senior management about what the software should do, then translating that into a set of instructions that will (initially) define the (initial) requirements given to IT.

What is the most important point in software development? According to BABOK and most BAs, it is "find a champion in senior management who will run interference when we run over budget (inevitable) and run out of time (inevitable)." Cost overruns, missed deadlines, and scope creep are considered facts of life, and it is usually the BAs (with the help of their champion(s) in senior management) who get the few projects completed that actually get completed.

The increase in the need for BAs has risen in parallel with the increase in popularity of extreme programming and SCRUM. Or--stated another way--the increase in the need for BAs has risen in parallel with the decrease in the ability of senior management to clearly define requirements before the coding starts. MBWA does not work well for defining software requirements.

thaskalos
07-25-2013, 12:26 AM
I bought this book for $4.99 on the kindle...but have not read it.

I consider it a great weakness of mine that I can never get past the introduction in books of this sort.

traynor
07-25-2013, 09:59 AM
I bought this book for $4.99 on the kindle...but have not read it.

I consider it a great weakness of mine that I can never get past the introduction in books of this sort.

Then you miss a great deal in "books of this sort." Their value is in making one aware of deficiencies, defects, and shortcomings in one's own cognitive processing--and in suggesting ways to overcome, surpass, or at the very least compensate for, those deficiencies, defects, and shortcomings.

The greatest lie that has ever been foisted on a gullible public eager to be stroked may well be, "you are already perfect just as you are." That may stroke the ego, but it also utterly destroys any motivation (or potential) for improvement--regardless of what says, thinks, or believes on the surface.

The greatest value of books of this sort may be in stimulating the reader to think critically about what they are reading--and to cling less tenaciously to preconceived ideas and opinions.

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 11:34 AM
Some day when all the tracks are dark and you have nothing else interesting to do, you might dig a bit into the field of business analysis. The BAs are the linchpins between the IT department and the executives who employ and direct them (through the BAs). It puts software development into a completely different perspective.

Before the first line of code is written, before the first requirement is defined, it is the BAs that are tasked with interpreting the "wants, needs, and fantasies" of senior management about what the software should do, then translating that into a set of instructions that will (initially) define the (initial) requirements given to IT.

What is the most important point in software development? According to BABOK and most BAs, it is "find a champion in senior management who will run interference when we run over budget (inevitable) and run out of time (inevitable)." Cost overruns, missed deadlines, and scope creep are considered facts of life, and it is usually the BAs (with the help of their champion(s) in senior management) who get the few projects completed that actually get completed.

The increase in the need for BAs has risen in parallel with the increase in popularity of extreme programming and SCRUM. Or--stated another way--the increase in the need for BAs has risen in parallel with the decrease in the ability of senior management to clearly define requirements before the coding starts. MBWA does not work well for defining software requirements.



I do not quite agree.

The role of a BA has certainly been diminished as agile methodology has substituted the classical waterfall approach that was the standard several decades ago.

Today's project are usually defined by very tight deadlines that do not allow for the luxury of clearly defining a complete business model and I assure you the code is written in a parallel fashion with requirement gatherings. In most of the cases specs are going to change radically from sprint to sprint and releases are way more frequent than in the past. I do not agree that the increased popularity of EX, Scrum and agile are increasing the need for BAs; quite the opposite is what is happening. For the last 10 or so years, I have never worked in a team having a BA role which seems to have been substituted to a very large extend from the PM (project manager) who usually is a developer who has been working on the business for long time, implementing several related solutions and made the transition to a manager.

Requirements are usually not gathered by senior management (an exception to this can found in teams with very flat hierarchies) but from middle layers and senior users. Senior management knows the why, middle level managers and PMs know the what and architects and developers specialize on the how.

traynor
07-25-2013, 12:27 PM
I do not quite agree.

The role of a BA has certainly been diminished as agile methodology has substituted the classical waterfall approach that was the standard several decades ago.

Today's project are usually defined by very tight deadlines that do not allow for the luxury of clearly defining a complete business model and I assure you the code is written in a parallel fashion with requirement gatherings. In most of the cases specs are going to change radically from sprint to sprint and releases are way more frequent than in the past. I do not agree that the increased popularity of EX, Scrum and agile are increasing the need for BAs; quite the opposite is what is happening. For the last 10 or so years, I have never worked in a team having a BA role which seems to have been substituted to a very large extend from the PM (project manager) who usually is a developer who has been working on the business for long time, implementing several related solutions and made the transition to a manager.

Requirements are usually not gathered by senior management (an exception to this can found in teams with very flat hierarchies) but from middle layers and senior users. Senior management knows the why, middle level managers and PMs know the what and architects and developers specialize on the how.

Senior management has to support the concept, or all the great ideas of the IT staff are pretty much worthless. Middle management may submit proposals or make suggestions, but it is senior management that must authorize the projects. That senior management is (often) out of touch with the techhies in IT--they speak a different language. The BAs translate (and facilitate) communication between them.

The failure to explicitly define the end deliverable before the coding starts can be directly attributed to the "develop on the fly" concepts of agile programming--guaranteed employment for developers up to the point senior management realizes it can't get what it wants unless it doubles the budget, halves the scope, and generally settles for whatever the IT people come up with.

With all due respect to the IT staff--and middle management--they are only employees who do what they are told to do. They may make suggestions, but it is senior management that makes the decisions. Those decisions are--to a very great extent--made based on information and evalutions by BAs.

traynor
07-25-2013, 12:58 PM
I assume everyone is aware that the cost overruns and delivery schedule failures in software development can often be directly attributed to the "Ready, Fire, Aim" principle. Specifically, make work strategies for the IT staff. "Projects" are started with poorly defined goals, poorly defined requirements, a "budget" that no one really expects to comply with, and an unrealistic time frame that no one really expects to meet.

The success of the strategy is based on implementation of the sunk cost fallacy.

Unfortunately, it is a bit like running in large, looping spirals to get from Point A to Point B. Unless one knows where Point B is located, the majority of effort exerted to get there is wasted. "Frequent deliverables" sounds--in theory--like a great idea. In practice, it is often a flurry of activity that accomplishes little. If one does not know where one is going, why is one in such a hurry?

I refer anyone interested in the topic to explore the works of Weick for some interesting observations. Or the $25 million Inko's dumped when a (new) manager realized the technology they were implementing (SAP, to be specific) would chain them to an endless bleeder of $300/hr "consultants" to keep it running.

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 01:24 PM
I agree with what you say.

In contrary to any other kind of engineering, when it comes to software development, in the vast majority of the times, deadlines are not decided by the developers but by the marketing team if it is a consulting project or the higher management. Development teams consisting in their majority from H-1B employees who are eager to please, almost never challenge the unreasonable demands, pretending that they have sufficient time and complete specs, converting the project to a nightmare, making 12+ working days the norm as it is simple impossible to deliver on time.

The true is that the domain of SD is clearly inferior to any similar one, requiring comparable training and expertize. The prestige and recognition of a software developer is very low as it is our career path, that most of times reaches its plateau to a VP title translating to a minor project management role with no real authorization but a lot of responsibilities.

You can read more here:

http://www.halfsigma.com/2007/03/why_a_career_in.html

thaskalos
07-25-2013, 01:50 PM
Then you miss a great deal in "books of this sort." Their value is in making one aware of deficiencies, defects, and shortcomings in one's own cognitive processing--and in suggesting ways to overcome, surpass, or at the very least compensate for, those deficiencies, defects, and shortcomings.

The greatest lie that has ever been foisted on a gullible public eager to be stroked may well be, "you are already perfect just as you are." That may stroke the ego, but it also utterly destroys any motivation (or potential) for improvement--regardless of what says, thinks, or believes on the surface.

The greatest value of books of this sort may be in stimulating the reader to think critically about what they are reading--and to cling less tenaciously to preconceived ideas and opinions.

The argument could also be made that the greatest lie to have ever been foisted on the gullible public is that you can "fix" yourself by reading a book.

I have been a voracious reader of non-fiction books -- especially the "self-improvement" kind -- for most of my life...and have built a personal library the size of which is unlikely to be found in any other home. And yet...the most self-improving aspect of all this proved to be when I recently decided to start giving my books away to relatives and friends. I invite people to my basement library, and freely give to them any books that they like...while trying to persuade them into selecting my most prized possessions -- the books that I valued the most.

It has taken me almost 52 years...but I have finally realized that TRUE self-improvement is not a process of addition; it's a process of subtraction.

Robert Goren
07-25-2013, 01:59 PM
It has taken me almost 52 years...but I have finally realized that TRUE self-improvement is not a process of addition; it's a process of subtraction. Ain't the truth. Most books of this sort are more interesting than helpful.

traynor
07-25-2013, 02:10 PM
The argument could also be made that the greatest lie to have ever been foisted on the gullible public is that you can "fix" yourself by reading a book.

I have been a voracious reader of non-fiction books -- especially the "self-improvement" kind -- for most of my life...and have built a personal library the size of which is unlikely to be found in any other home. And yet...the most self-improving aspect of all this proved to be when I recently decided to start giving my books away to relatives and friends. I invite people to my basement library, and freely give to them any books that they like...while trying to persuade them into selecting my most prized possessions -- the books that I valued the most.

It has taken me almost 52 years...but I have finally realized that TRUE self-improvement is not a process of addition; it's a process of subtraction.

Yuh. Thoreau. “A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone.”

My favorite is, “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms.”

One may learn more by hunting with a bow in solitude than in almost any other endeavor.

traynor
07-25-2013, 02:15 PM
Ain't the truth. Most books of this sort are more interesting than helpful.

That is why it is essential to read critically, and thoughtfully. Way too many read for nothing more than support for their existing beliefs and biases, and studiously avoid anything that conflicts with those beliefs and biases.

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 02:20 PM
Self improvement relies more on spiritual growth and faith than knowledge.

thaskalos
07-25-2013, 02:23 PM
Yuh. Thoreau. “A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone.”

My favorite is, “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms.”

One may learn more by hunting with a bow in solitude than in almost any other endeavor.

Yes...Socrates, Thoreau, the Buddha...I read them all when I was 18. So...why did it take me an additional 34 years to finally heed their advice?

Here is what the self-improvement writers, and their readers, fail to realize:

The teacher won't appear, until the student is ready.

traynor
07-25-2013, 03:35 PM
Yes...Socrates, Thoreau, the Buddha...I read them all when I was 18. So...why did it take me an additional 34 years to finally heed their advice?

Here is what the self-improvement writers, and their readers, fail to realize:

The teacher won't appear, until the student is ready.

Perhaps. I think it may be more that Castaneda's view is more accurate. The folly is the belief in one's own immortality--that there is an infinite amount of time available to do whatever one chooses to do. When one realizes--fully and completely, without illusion--that one's death is continually stalking one--it puts an entirely different perspective on one's actions. And non-actions.

traynor
07-25-2013, 03:42 PM
Self improvement relies more on spiritual growth and faith than knowledge.

It relies even more on one reaching the end of one's rope--and realizing that they either have to let go, or pull themselves up--because no one else can do it for them. They have to do it on their own. Alone. By choice.

By then one realizes how truly insignificant he or she really is, and discovers the real meaning of the haiku:

sitting quietly, doing nothing,
cherry blossoms bloom,
and spring comes of itself.

Of course, one could call that spiritual growth. Or monumental self-indulgence, depending on one's inclinations.

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 03:47 PM
It relies even more on one reaching the end of one's rope--and realizing that they either have to let go, or pull themselves up--because no one else can do it for them. They have to do it on their own. Alone. By choice.

We cannot do anything be ourselves.

This way of thinking comes from the Orient, consisting the base of nihilistic religions like Buddhism.

Help has to be given from the outside.

thaskalos
07-25-2013, 04:13 PM
It relies even more on one reaching the end of one's rope--and realizing that they either have to let go, or pull themselves up--because no one else can do it for them. They have to do it on their own. Alone. By choice.

By then one realizes how truly insignificant he or she really is, and discovers the real meaning of the haiku:

sitting quietly, doing nothing,
cherry blossoms bloom,
and spring comes of itself.

Of course, one could call that spiritual growth. Or monumental self-indulgence, depending on one's inclinations.
Excellent! :ThmbUp:

It could not be said any better.

thaskalos
07-25-2013, 04:15 PM
We cannot do anything be ourselves.

This way of thinking comes from the Orient, consisting the base of nihilistic religions like Buddhism.

Help has to be given from the outside.
Nothing coming from the "outside" can be trusted...if it doesn't resonate from within.

Saratoga_Mike
07-25-2013, 04:19 PM
Excellent! :ThmbUp:

It could not be said any better.

I enjoyed the haiku most!

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 04:44 PM
Nothing coming from the "outside" can be trusted...if it doesn't resonate from within.

It boils down to the concept of FAITH.

thaskalos
07-25-2013, 05:11 PM
It boils down to the concept of FAITH.

IMO..."faith" and "wishful thinking" are dangerously close to one another.

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 05:28 PM
IMO..."faith" and "wishful thinking" are dangerously close to one another.

Thask, your statement is very deep.

Several books have been written about it.

The following is a good starting point:


http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/216YCTQZ90L._AA160_.jpg

traynor
07-25-2013, 05:58 PM
We cannot do anything be ourselves.

This way of thinking comes from the Orient, consisting the base of nihilistic religions like Buddhism.

Help has to be given from the outside.

I could not disagree more.

traynor
07-25-2013, 06:08 PM
Castaneda has an interesting explanation for something he calls "gazing." That is, more information can be gathered from the shadow of a thing than from direct observation of the thing itself. In the current context, the "shadow" of faith would be the admission--not necessarily consciously, but definitely outside of consciousness--that one is helpless, incompetent, and unable to do for one's self that which needs to be done.

That shadow reduces one's capabilities even further. That is the basic problem--that, in seeking "help," one in essence is telling himself or herself that she or he cannot do it alone. That, of course, is not the case. "Faith" is all well and good, but I am a big fan of Liam Neeson's monologue with "heavenly spirits" toward the end of The Grey. I am an even bigger fan of his conclusion at the end of that monologue.

DeltaLover
07-25-2013, 06:22 PM
I could not disagree more.

You are not alone.

The battle of Gnosticism against Hesychasm dates back to the first centuries of our civilization. It represents an extremely important confilict that to a large degree shaped the world as we know it today.

Although I respect your opinion, I think you need to do deeper research. The bibliography is very extensive.

For starters I suggest the following two:

http://www.amazon.com/Gregory-Palamas-Classics-Western-Spirituality/dp/0809124475/ref=sr_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1374787228&sr=1-8&keywords=Hesychasm

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_13?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=sailing+from+byzantium&sprefix=Sailing+From+%2Cstripbooks%2C131

traynor
07-25-2013, 09:47 PM
You are not alone.

The battle of Gnosticism against Hesychasm dates back to the first centuries of our civilization. It represents an extremely important confilict that to a large degree shaped the world as we know it today.

Although I respect your opinion, I think you need to do deeper research. The bibliography is very extensive.

For starters I suggest the following two:

http://www.amazon.com/Gregory-Palamas-Classics-Western-Spirituality/dp/0809124475/ref=sr_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1374787228&sr=1-8&keywords=Hesychasm

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_13?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=sailing+from+byzantium&sprefix=Sailing+From+%2Cstripbooks%2C131

I am one of those odd people who believes more in direct experience than being told by others what I should experience. This is an area in which my skepticism is paramount. It is not that I "disbelieve." It is that I have no respect for the perfectly ordinary people who presume to tell me what to think and what to believe. I have done an immense amount of research on the topic, and it all boils down to (my reluctance to take) that final "leap of faith" that the phenomena being described, or the events being described, actually took place and that the descriptions of those phenomena and events are accurate, objective reports--rather than attempts to persuade me to "believe" with zero proof.

I don't mean to denigrate anyone else's beliefs or faith. All I am saying is that from my perspective, I want more than the writings, words, and interpretations of ordinary people.

CincyHorseplayer
07-26-2013, 12:26 AM
I am one of those odd people who believes more in direct experience than being told by others what I should experience. This is an area in which my skepticism is paramount. It is not that I "disbelieve." It is that I have no respect for the perfectly ordinary people who presume to tell me what to think and what to believe. I have done an immense amount of research on the topic, and it all boils down to (my reluctance to take) that final "leap of faith" that the phenomena being described, or the events being described, actually took place and that the descriptions of those phenomena and events are accurate, objective reports--rather than attempts to persuade me to "believe" with zero proof.

I don't mean to denigrate anyone else's beliefs or faith. All I am saying is that from my perspective, I want more than the writings, words, and interpretations of ordinary people.

Everything you describe reminds me of Gurdjieff although I only know of him from Colin Wilson's book "The Occult" under the chapter "Two Russian Mages".It's a pretty interesting book.

traynor
07-26-2013, 12:48 AM
Everything you describe reminds me of Gurdjieff although I only know of him from Colin Wilson's book "The Occult" under the chapter "Two Russian Mages".It's a pretty interesting book.

Long ago, when I was involved in such things, I knew a number of people who were very serious about Gurdjieff's teachings. They seemed very reasonable people.

SchagFactorToWin
07-26-2013, 09:44 AM
...the most self-improving aspect of all this proved to be when I recently decided to start giving my books away to relatives and friends. I invite people to my basement library, and freely give to them any books that they like...while trying to persuade them into selecting my most prized possessions -- the books that I valued the most.

I enjoy doing that, too, but draw the line at Hemingway's short stories and Plato's dialogues- the only 2 books I need to enjoy life.

CincyHorseplayer
07-26-2013, 02:29 PM
I enjoy doing that, too, but draw the line at Hemingway's short stories and Plato's dialogues- the only 2 books I need to enjoy life.

Men Without Women and A Moveable Feast I absolutely love.Hemingway had some good stuff at the Parisian tracks in the latter book.

IrishRail76
07-26-2013, 08:34 PM
Such great books, great authors, and truly genuine and insightful replies make this forum a comfortable and educational island in the sea of internet "stuff."

I love it when you share thoughts about authors and their craft. We all learn from your conversations.

As Hemmingway said, "There's nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed."

DeltaLover
07-27-2013, 12:18 AM
I am one of those odd people who believes more in direct experience than being told by others what I should experience. This is an area in which my skepticism is paramount. It is not that I "disbelieve." It is that I have no respect for the perfectly ordinary people who presume to tell me what to think and what to believe. I have done an immense amount of research on the topic, and it all boils down to (my reluctance to take) that final "leap of faith" that the phenomena being described, or the events being described, actually took place and that the descriptions of those phenomena and events are accurate, objective reports--rather than attempts to persuade me to "believe" with zero proof.

I don't mean to denigrate anyone else's beliefs or faith. All I am saying is that from my perspective, I want more than the writings, words, and interpretations of ordinary people.

The problem is that what you call experience might very well be a illusion.

The greatest mind of the humanity is teaching us about it: Allegory of the Cave (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_Cave)

DeltaLover
07-27-2013, 12:22 AM
I enjoy doing that, too, but draw the line at Hemingway's short stories and Plato's dialogues- the only 2 books I need to enjoy life.

These two names do not belong to the same sentence...

traynor
07-27-2013, 02:33 AM
The problem is that what you call experience might very well be a illusion.

The greatest mind of the humanity is teaching us about it: Allegory of the Cave (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_Cave)

Of course. It is a bit like the bozo guru prattling on about how everything is illusion. Including the bozo guru prattling on about how everything is illusion.

I don't buy the greatest mind of humanity teaching anything. That is probably illusion, too.

The problem with that illusion bit is that it has no limits. Of course, it may just be that the entire concept of experience being illusion is itself an illusion--just another bothersome little ripple in the fabric of reality to be smoothed in one's passage from here to there.

Or, to use Castaneda's terms, it may just be the petty little tonal defending it's petty little domain, and declaring anything beyond the limits of the tonal as unknowable. Poppycock.

DeltaLover
07-27-2013, 06:54 AM
Of course. It is a bit like the bozo guru prattling on about how everything is illusion. Including the bozo guru prattling on about how everything is illusion.

I don't buy the greatest mind of humanity teaching anything. That is probably illusion, too.

Sure..

You, Castaneda, Liam Neeson and your professors in the graduate school where you went to learn how to handicap horse races (http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showpost.php?p=1351682&postcount=122) know better and do not need any of his 'teachings'...

Yes...

YOU KNOW BETTER THAN THIS BOZO GURU

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

traynor
07-27-2013, 10:40 AM
Sure..

You, Castaneda, Liam Neeson and your professors in the graduate school where you went to learn how to handicap horse races (http://www.paceadvantage.com/forum/showpost.php?p=1351682&postcount=122) know better and do not need any of his 'teachings'...

Yes...

YOU KNOW BETTER THAN THIS BOZO GURU

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Absolutely not. I listen, I read, I think--and then I make my own decisions. It is a process called calibration. The effectiveness or futility of that process is directly proportional to the degree of self-efficacy of the calibrator. And the inherent honesty of the cognitive processes from which the self-efficacy is derived.

To the degree to which one seeks (and accepts) an external locus of control is one bound by, constrained by, and trapped by that external.

Who said that? I did. Just now.

If one finds comfort and solace in the words, concepts, or beliefs of others, I wish them well, and a long and happy life. As for me, I view them much like the friendly indians inviting don Genaro to stay with them awhile in his Journey to Ixtlan. Nice people. Friendly people. People filled with good intentions. But no more than a distraction, because they do not know the way to Ixtlan.

A clarification. I really hope you did not interpret what I wrote as referring to you (or to the link you cited) as a "bozo guru." My reference was to the eastern concept of maya (illusion), and the "leap of faith" (or suspension of cognitive processing) required to accept that the "guru" is somehow exempt from the "all is illusion" description. I have a great deal of respect for you and for your intellectual prowess--even if I totally disagree with you at times.

CincyHorseplayer
07-27-2013, 01:11 PM
The problem is that what you call experience might very well be a illusion.

The greatest mind of the humanity is teaching us about it: Allegory of the Cave (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_Cave)

I know this was directed towards Traynor but I have to chime in.It all depends on what experience you subject yourself to.If you are in an insulated world of comfort and security,experience very well may be an illusion.If the only experiences you have are "good times" and a change of thought there's not much raw material.When I was a young man I believed in Baudelaire's proposition that all experience good and bad was the raw material for not only the poet but a great human being.Subjection to glory and suffering could only produce a real take.So I set out with my copy of Nietzsche's Beyond Good And Evil and Kerouac's On The Road and did just that=put my thumb in the air on the highway!They don't let you even on the interstate these days but you get the point.Intellectual idealism is nothing without the raw experience.Being loved,hated,fistfights,jails,hopping trains between states,being in love with 3 women between 3 states,penning immortal words while the town preacher is buying you a meal at the local diner,being unafraid of what the new day brings,living life on a string and throwing the hands up to chance.This type of experience is no illusion!

traynor
07-27-2013, 05:04 PM
I know this was directed towards Traynor but I have to chime in.It all depends on what experience you subject yourself to.If you are in an insulated world of comfort and security,experience very well may be an illusion.If the only experiences you have are "good times" and a change of thought there's not much raw material.When I was a young man I believed in Baudelaire's proposition that all experience good and bad was the raw material for not only the poet but a great human being.Subjection to glory and suffering could only produce a real take.So I set out with my copy of Nietzsche's Beyond Good And Evil and Kerouac's On The Road and did just that=put my thumb in the air on the highway!They don't let you even on the interstate these days but you get the point.Intellectual idealism is nothing without the raw experience.Being loved,hated,fistfights,jails,hopping trains between states,being in love with 3 women between 3 states,penning immortal words while the town preacher is buying you a meal at the local diner,being unafraid of what the new day brings,living life on a string and throwing the hands up to chance.This type of experience is no illusion!


That pretty much describes what Castaneda referred to as un viaje de poder--a journey of power. It is that which pushes the limits of the tonal until it shrinks and realizes it is not all there is. Something that those who find comfort and solace in the safe, predictable, understandable world of lala land avoid like the plague. A pity. They give up so much to have so very, very little.

thaskalos
07-27-2013, 06:32 PM
Absolutely not. I listen, I read, I think--and then I make my own decisions. It is a process called calibration. The effectiveness or futility of that process is directly proportional to the degree of self-efficacy of the calibrator. And the inherent honesty of the cognitive processes from which the self-efficacy is derived.

To the degree to which one seeks (and accepts) an external locus of control is one bound by, constrained by, and trapped by that external.

Who said that? I did. Just now.

If one finds comfort and solace in the words, concepts, or beliefs of others, I wish them well, and a long and happy life. As for me, I view them much like the friendly indians inviting don Genaro to stay with them awhile in his Journey to Ixtlan. Nice people. Friendly people. People filled with good intentions. But no more than a distraction, because they do not know the way to Ixtlan.

A clarification. I really hope you did not interpret what I wrote as referring to you (or to the link you cited) as a "bozo guru." My reference was to the eastern concept of maya (illusion), and the "leap of faith" (or suspension of cognitive processing) required to accept that the "guru" is somehow exempt from the "all is illusion" description. I have a great deal of respect for you and for your intellectual prowess--even if I totally disagree with you at times.

There have been some fascinating people who have walked the earth...and they have had quite a story to tell. And some have told their story in a most delightful way.

All of us like to think that we are "warriors", who are leading fascinating lives...when the truth is that most of us are "slaves", who are leading lives of desperate quietness. I applaud the true warriors among us, and I devour their books, when I am fortunate enough to find them. Their words stay with me forever...just as Castaneda's have stayed with you. They don't dispense universal truths...nor do they look for disciples. They just live their lives to the fullest...and then they sit in front of their typewriters, and bleed.

Robert de Ropp -- Warrior's Way

Robert A. Johnson -- Balancing Heaven and Earth

My heartfelt thanks go out to both... :ThmbUp:

traynor
07-27-2013, 06:56 PM
There have been some fascinating people who have walked the earth...and they have had quite a story to tell. And some have told their story in a most delightful way.

All of us like to think that we are "warriors", who are leading fascinating lives...when the truth is that most of us are "slaves", who are leading lives of desperate quietness. I applaud the true warriors among us, and I devour their books, when I am fortunate enough to find them. Their words stay with me forever...just as Castaneda's have stayed with you. They don't dispense universal truths...nor do they look for disciples; they just sit in front of their typewriters, and bleed.

Robert de Ropp -- Warrior's Way

Robert A. Johnson -- Balancing Heaven and Earth

My heartfelt thanks go out to both... :ThmbUp:

de Ropp was great. So was Joseph Chilton Pearce. John C. Lily. Oscar Ichazo, down at Arica in Chile. Lots of thoughtful, insightful people. They all seemed to share the same quality, that spoon-fed knowledge is worthless. One must seize it for himself or herself and make it her or his own. "Do it yourself and then you will know it works" is far more significant than "if you believe, lots of good stuff will happen. Someday. And if it ever does, it will be because you believed."

SchagFactorToWin
07-28-2013, 02:52 PM
These two names do not belong to the same sentence...
They certainly do: one for the rational life, one for the artistic life. Insert replacement artist for your taste. I am, of course, assuming it's Hem you don't think belongs.

DeltaLover
07-29-2013, 12:33 PM
They certainly do: one for the rational life, one for the artistic life. Insert replacement artist for your taste. I am, of course, assuming it's Hem you don't think belongs.

The only 'artist' belonging in this sentence is Homer.

Be careful though...

In Repuplic, Plato is exiling the poets from his ideal state! ;)

See here for more:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/0226567273#_

turninforhome10
08-25-2013, 09:44 PM
I have found listening is sometimes better than reading.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuGhDA-5Wkc