Thursday, December 28, 2006

It is a common delusion that you make things better by talking about them.
-- Dame Rose Macaulay

Pardon me, Rose, but it seems to me that you are either very cynical or very disheartened in life. If you include the broader range of expression and perception, then "talking about things" is practically the only thing which actually makes things better.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, December 28, 2006   28 comments links to this post

28 Comments:

At 28 Dec 2006 18:22:00, Anonymous terry said...

If you include the broader range of expression and perception, then "talking about things" is practically the only thing which actually makes things better. (Eolake said)

Agreed Eolake. Talking about them does help. When you posted the Loneliness/Divorce discussion it helped me tremendously. Thank you again for doing that.
You are such an understanding man. Your blog is worthwhile reading. Keep up the good work my Danish friend.

 
At 28 Dec 2006 18:54:00, Blogger Lucid Twilight said...

There is some truth to the quote. Idle chatter doesn't get anything done. Why talk if the only purpose is to complain, or assert the correctness of your view?

As with all things it isn't the action itself that determines its value, it's the motive behind it. If the reason you talk boils down to learning, problem solving (or healing) and an expansion of being, then it is a very worthwhile activity. If your words are spoken only to complain, if you dwell only on your problems and there's no opportunity for even a thin ray of light to enter or exit your mind then surely talking will do little to fix the situation.

All symbols lack significance until the individual grants them meaning. Talking, which is symbolic of communication, is no different.

 
At 29 Dec 2006 06:34:00, Blogger signalroom said...

in relationships between men and women, often women believe talking about "the relationship" will make it better, while in general, men communicate and make better by doing. I know I am generalizing.

 
At 29 Dec 2006 06:49:00, Blogger signalroom said...

more specifically, women want to talk about their feelings about the relationship (again, I'm being general), and men think, Why fix what aint broke?

I'm a real talker, and I've had to learn how to be quiet. In this sense I agree with the original quote.

I also really appreciate men who are able and willing to communicate well.

 
At 29 Dec 2006 06:56:00, Blogger eolake said...

Of course in this contex I mean Communicate, not just chatter like Italian fish wives.

 
At 29 Dec 2006 09:41:00, Anonymous terry said...

I also really appreciate men who are able and willing to communicate well.

But to find another is often like searching the haystack for that proverbial needle :(
Don't be sad I tell myself. It will happen "someday."
I think I'll get my buddy Pascal to give me an injection of patience while I stand in the corner watching other couples walk happily by.
But then I am reminded of what my Lord said long ago, "Greater is He that is in you then He that is in the world."
My Lord Jesus will send me my love. Don't be sad.....Yes my Lord.

 
At 29 Dec 2006 10:41:00, Anonymous Anonymous said...

not just chatter like Italian fish wives.

WTF?

 
At 29 Dec 2006 19:22:00, Anonymous Bubba Chubba said...

Anonymous said...
not just chatter like Italian fish wives.

WTF?

You don't watch many B Films do you? Don't really blame you, they're no brainers anyway.

 
At 29 Dec 2006 21:36:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

"Of course in this contex I mean Communicate, not just chatter like Italian fish wives."
Hey, I think Italian fish wives chatter is very musical and pleasant! I admit my opinion might be different if Italian was more than simple sounds to my ear... ;-)

"I think I'll get my buddy Pascal to give me an injection of patience"
Careful what you wish for : patience costs more than caviar in Lebanon today. Something about "increased demand", or whatnot...
But I'll try to find you a dose, tax free of course. (Shhh! Don't tell anyone!)

Communication is good. It is also rather specifically feminine. Ladies, if you find a good man but he's no communicating maven, remember this is why men don't complain about groups of women friends. We understand your needs. While you Eves were maintaining the fire and planning and analyzing, we Adams were out hunting uncooperative beasts. We're more "oriented" toward action by nature. And by Nature.

It is all a matter of degree, really. Women in average tend to talk more (no criticism meant). Each gender globally has its stronger suits.

Before I'm mistaken for a misogynist, let me hasten to add this : biology has shown that women's muscles are slightly less efficient than male, which explains the difference in sports world records... but the vast majority of men could never hope to compete with an average female athlete! Years of hard work are far more important than the letter of a certain chromosome. Plus, human variability means that many men or women will excell in domains traditionally not their own.

Which is perfectly okay with me.

Somebody (a guy) once said : "Free will for a man often means choosing the woman who'll take the decisions for him."
Maybe this is why women talk good. :-)

 
At 30 Dec 2006 12:59:00, Anonymous Proud Black Man said...

but the vast majority of men could never hope to compete with an average female athlete!

Pleasssssssse stop that. What do you expect with a comment like that? It appears bias. And didn't you once use the word "nigger" in one of your posts?
You are not a racist are you? A friend told me that some of the bloggers on this site were. I don't know for sure, but I hope not.
We have enough of that where I live.

 
At 30 Dec 2006 13:14:00, Anonymous king zod said...

A friend told me that some of the bloggers on this site were. I don't know for sure, but I hope not.

Mr Proud Black Man,
There are no racist people that dwell here. They are very kind and loving folk who have discussions about various topics.
You were mislead. Please do not assume something without first looking into it, eh? I am honored to be a part of Mr. Stobblehouses's site. He has good attributes and thoughts (some I may not always agree with) but nevertheless he lets me speak my opinions and let's others too.
Gracefully yours.

 
At 30 Dec 2006 15:09:00, Anonymous David Gallaher said...

Talking about things may not directly make things better, but very few processes are direct. Living is complex and requires many "steps" toward progress. In fact, 3 steps forward followed by 2 steps backward is not uncommon.

 
At 30 Dec 2006 19:42:00, Blogger Lucid Twilight said...

"Living is complex and requires many "steps" toward progress."

I don't think of these steps as required. They're more or less anchors for belief, reasons that we can justify allowing progress rather than actual bars to progress themselves.

The three steps forward, two steps back model is just another way of walking in circles. Nothing ever really gets done that way. Now, if that is what we know and accept, it's a good place to begin. Assuming we're looking for a better method while we're at it, it will serve a purpose. Or that process could be refined to the point where results actually do follow, even if they aren't as spectacular as what could be gained through a more direct method.

Life is actually very simple at its core. Our confusion arises from assuming complexity and then structuring models of existence around that framework. That's why there's so much toil and struggle involved in it. Simplicity eliminates all that. If it can be said anything is eliminated, as this realization merely removes illusion from our sight instead of actually changing anything.

To re-state my earlier point: Talking gets nothing done. Communication, now that can move mountains! And very quickly to boot.

 
At 31 Dec 2006 00:40:00, Anonymous David Gallaher said...

lucid twilight,
I think we may be defining complexity differently.
You see it as wringing of hands and angst. I'm talking about a process that humanity may be on the verge of understanding, and it's a good thing, or, at least, a progress-allowing thing.
One of the best examples of the complexity I'm speaking of is the "invisible hand" Adam Smith wrote about.

 
At 31 Dec 2006 02:46:00, Blogger signalroom said...

king zod, thank you. You always show up at the right time. You and Pascal ought to meet :) I think you have a lot in common...

proud black man, I like your name.

I am not racist, or race oriented, except the times I wished I had been born a beautiful black woman. Actually this is more often than you know. Every time I hear Yolanda Adams belt out "The Battle is the Lord's" I am no more a little white girl.... I am powerful too.

lucid, I agree, life is simple at the core.

Terry, I've also heard the H.S. whisper to me, Greater is She who is in you, than she who is in the world....

love to you all,
laurie

 
At 31 Dec 2006 05:31:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

Proud Black Man (I too like the sound of this),
The simple fact that you ask before judging shows you're the kind of people I love to talk with. Regardless of origin, color, language, gender, country, etc. You've instantly gained my respect there.
"We have enough of that where I live."
Well, I'd say we have too many of those everywhere. I'm Lebanese; my fellow countrymen have some common attitudes that put me to shame.
Your friend simply made a hasty opinion about me based on incomplete facts. I had made my beliefs quite clear as early as last July on this thread, please read it all and then tell me whether I'm insulting your legitimate pride.
"And didn't you once use the word "nigger" in one of your posts?"
I did MENTION the word, but not USE it. Like you just did here. Big difference, isn't it? As I recall, I quoted that scene in Rush Hour, where Chris Tucker greets a fellow bro' in a bar saying : "Whassup, my nigger?"
I then pointed out that Chris Tucker used that word but couldn't be racist, because he's black. (Then clueless chinese cop Jackie Chan tries saying the same thing to the guy to fit in, and of course a fight breaks up!)

The bottom line is, I don't fear words, only the intention with which they are used. A proper word may be used with a very mean intention, and reversely. Some sensitive people may have trouble seeing the difference. I can understand this, sometimes people will have very valid reasons to react quickly in case of doubt or suspicion. Their survival may depend on it where they grew up.
You're very much welcome here, Mr Proud. Every new voice and point of view is enriching to all. This is why I visit this blog.
I love to joke. I hate to mock and hurt. But some misunderstandings can happen in such a culturally diverse place. That's all there is to anything.

Speaking of which...

David Gallaher,
I recall that joke about a man setting off to visit his sick friend: "Man, what a blizzard! I thought I'd never make it. Two steps forward, and then three steps bacwards! -How on Earth did you manage to arrive, then? -Oh, that's because I gave up and headed back home."

"The three steps forward, two steps back model is just another way of walking in circles."
Isn't that also a French Renaissance dance? :-)
"Nothing ever really gets done that way."
Alas, I follow the news : everything that ever gets done in international politics seems to follow that rule. Which proves your point, Lucid!

David Gallaher said...
I think we may be defining complexity differently.

Well, language in itself is a complicated matter, isn't it? Some definitions and concepts vary greatly with people. :-)

"king zod, you and Pascal ought to meet :)"
Let's set this at your royal harem with my buddies this New Year's Eve, shall we? I'll bring some lebanese Arak that'll get your crown spinning! (It is said that some local batches can achieve more than 100 degrees of alcohol...)

"Signalroom said...
I am not racist, or race oriented, except the times I wished I had been born a beautiful black woman."

I'd say this is the exception that confirms the rule. :-)
It's perfectly okay to see the differences, and to talk about them, as long as you don't define them as criteria for putting down some people. We are all different, unique, and that's allright.
The physical specificities of african women can make for some stunningly beautiful features indeed. I once saw such a girl in college, who looked like a living doll, I swear! A truly *perfect* face. Too bad I was so shy I never spoke to her.
Today, my mother's fantasy is that I one day marry a lovely and happy wahina from Tahiti. Who knows?...

However we look, we are humans, therefore with sublime potential, and this in itself should be the source of great pride. Um... while remaining modest, of course!
Noble, not-full-of-itself pride.
The genuine stuff, if you like.

 
At 31 Dec 2006 05:42:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

(Nudity warning)
Now that I think of it, this girl looked a bit like Shondra. Thinner, with perfectly black skin, a rounder face, and fuller lips.

I know, I was such a fool to let her go! :-/

 
At 31 Dec 2006 13:21:00, Blogger Lucid Twilight said...

David,

I do believe we're actually on the same page. This is where we differ: I say that this process is worthless of itself. It is needless complication that gets nothing done. You say it is often necessary. I don't disagree, not because it IS necessary but because people are familiar with it so it is what they are most inclined to do.

If I understand, you think this process does get something done. I say it can't, but through using it one can learn of a method that is effective. We have to work with what we know before we can expand. As an ignorant student I wouldn't have dared to jump from first grade math to advanced calculus. The cognitive gap would simply be too large. I could eventually gain understanding of the advanced subject, but my progress would be inextricably slowed by my lack of understanding. By not making use of the mechanisms in between meant to serve as stepping stones I would multiply the required effort a thousand fold. That would be horribly inefficient. My pride might suggest that I should skip to the final step but I know I'd best hold back until my understanding has grown lest I swim into the ocean before I'm accustomed to the kiddy pool.

We agree on this: something does eventually get done. We differ on the whens and hows of it, but even then there is no major disagreement. Mine is a suggestion that we should open our minds during every step of the process so we can see beyond what we already know so progress can be accelerated. Work within your familiar constructs and move on to something else once you're on the verge of mastering them.

And again I would stress that the intent driving the processes is paramount. Anything will ultimately yield positive effects when good intention begins the process and is maintained throughout. I suppose it can be said, then, that no process ever gets anything done, it's always the intent that causes change. What I aim for is a method that gets rid of all the cumbersome complication and focuses only on the driving force of every thought and finding a means to communicate that directly to my fellow man. People are anything but direct under normal circumstances, so what I've described here would not work for them. Still I encourage them to at least open their minds to such concepts while they learn to communicate with each other via the tools already in their hands. That is how we will destroy the barriers between us and advance together as a people.

 
At 31 Dec 2006 20:46:00, Anonymous proud black man said...

I am not racist, or race oriented, except the times I wished I had been born a beautiful black woman.

To signalhome
I'm glad you are not a racist, but telling me you wished you had been born a beautiful black woman is stretching it quite a bit. That's very transparent.

To you King Zod
Thank you for your kind words.

 
At 1 Jan 2007 05:55:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

Proud Black Man,

I must break it to you : Signalroom is not your usual transparent politically-correct dudette. When you know her a little better, you'll find out she really is that innocently enthusiastic. She's the kind of woman you'd expect to spot prancing across the land throwing rose petals around, except she prefers to spread unbounded love with the absoluteness of a child.

Such rare people do exist, and you've just met one. :-)))


"Anything will ultimately yield positive effects when good intention begins the process and is maintained throughout."
I'd add : and intelligence to back the good intentions. Reflection must also be maintained throughout to avoid some well-intentioned clumsiness. (Archie Andrews© springs to mind...)

"What I aim for is a method that gets rid of all the cumbersome complication and focuses only on the driving force of every thought"
I'm getting an image here : Lucid Twilight©, the well-meaning super-powerful psionic mutant. Anything his mind believes in, he can accomplish immediately.
I may try and sell the idea to Marvel Comics®. :-)
We'll split the cash, of course.

What do you mean, "Green Lantern rip-off"? I never mentioned any cosmic power ring, did I?

 
At 1 Jan 2007 19:51:00, Anonymous David Gallaher said...

lucid twilight,
I think you continue to see complexity as a mental or "mind" process, while I'm thinking of it as more physical or external.
For example, the Santa Fe Institute (New Mexico) is devoted to the study of the complexity I'm speaking of.

 
At 2 Jan 2007 09:26:00, Anonymous proud black man said...

Such rare people do exist, and you've just met one. :-)))

Thank you Pascal. I consider myself a decent human being. I'm not really rare but I appreciate you honoring me.
Once you know me better I know you'll have further praise on my behalf.
I may even toss a kind word or two your way.

 
At 2 Jan 2007 23:16:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

My lame pun of the week:

"If I notice rare people, that probably makes me a rarist."

I know, it's awful, but my analyst says it helps preserve my mental balance. ;o)

A wee bit less jokingly, the worse it gets in Lebanon, the more my dubious humor will show up. Thank you everybody for your patience.
(Actually, the politics aren't too bad these days, but I've caught a cold, so...)

It's ONE way to make things better by talking. Right, Dame Rose?
Talking, communicating, joking with ZERO seriousness... I'd say it makes things notably better.

 
At 3 Jan 2007 01:56:00, Blogger signalroom said...

Pascal,

Did you know I'm Tahitian?

Proud Black Man,
you are rare indeed.

love,
Signalroom

 
At 4 Jan 2007 01:03:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

"Did you know I'm Tahitian?"

Never had a clue! You have the hair, but it's blonde, so...
True, you also have the cheerful serene nature.
Well, aloha, wahina. :-)

Will your next photos be in a straw skirt? :-D

 
At 4 Jan 2007 01:52:00, Anonymous Nildar said...

To re-state my earlier point: Talking gets nothing done. Communication, now that can move mountains! And very quickly to boot.

To you Lucid Twilight,
You say talking gets nothing done, then you say communication can move mountains? Don't you realize that talking is communication?
I'm not picking on you either by this statement, but i've read some of your other posts and you write extremely long paragraphs but actually say very little. Why is that?

 
At 4 Jan 2007 09:53:00, Blogger Lucid Twilight said...

"Don't you realize that talking is communication?"

That's my point. Sometimes people talk without actually communicating. Many times if you take someone's words and strip them down to their essence, all they're saying is, "I'm right" and they're unwilling to hear anything that contradicts that.

Basically, I'm saying the action isn't as important as the motivation. Go ahead and talk, but unless your aim is to actually communicate, ie raise your voice and still hear the concerns of others, nothing will be accomplished.

I usually write long paragraphs for two reasons: 1. To strengthen my point and explain it in as many ways as I can (within a reasonable boundary) so it is well understood by anyone who'll read it. I like to cover all my bases. 2. To show the line of reasoning behind my conclusion.

There is a third reason that sometimes enters into play, namely 3. I feel like it. I like to write, what can I say? And the stuff we cover on this blog often requires in-depth responses so it's a good fit. Not everyone will jive with my style of communication so I don't worry about it unless they approach me for further discussion.

 
At 5 Jan 2007 00:24:00, Anonymous Pascal said...

-Nildar said...
"you write extremely long paragraphs but actually say very little."

-Lucid Twilight said...
"That's my point. Sometimes people talk without actually communicating."


Hey, Lucid, is that a guilty plea? ;-)


"I like to write, what can I say?"
You don't need help with that, mister. Figure it out yourself!
*<:o)

Wow, I managed a concise post! Woohoo!

 

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