The human Ego is a fascinating force for both good and evil. Ego can drive someone’s greed, or it can drive innovation. It can cause destruction, or protect against it. Your ego is like a firearm, it’s only dangerous if you use it with hostile intentions, against good people.
Out of control, our Ego will demand that we be “right”, and will savagely resist being proven wrong. A weak Ego will cause us to brag about our accomplishments, and be offended when our weaknesses are exposed. A weak Ego will feel pain when our friends improve their lives, or outshine us. Instead of cheering you on, people with a weak ego will diminish your accomplishments so as to preserve their own identity.
Ego is a force amplifier for ignorance. Ignorance is the rejection of information, without examination…which is sometimes exhibited as faith.
Our personal belief system is almost entirely faith based, though most would argue vehemently otherwise, as if they were defending their children from a vicious animal. Most people like to think that their beliefs and decisions are based on logic, science, and previous experience, though that is rarely true. The truth is, upon close examination, our decisions are made largely based on our trust, or faith in what we believe to be a credible source.
Sources of faith:
- Our own judgement
- Our perception of what constitutes Science
- People with what we perceive to be “credentials”
- Gut instinct (intuition)
- The intuition of others
- Others who inspire confidence
- Our perception of history
- Our perception of our own personal experiences
- Those in authority
- The “News” from sources we judge to be “credible”
Social media is chaulked full of statements of “fact”, which are exclaimed as the unblemished “truth”. Often the phrase “credible sources” is used as a baton to beat senseless, those who question the validity of the sources. How short our memory seems to be, when our “credible sources” get it dead wrong time and time again, yet we continue to give credence to their blathering.
My question I’m asking you to ponder is this: What do you REALLY know for certain? If you were to make a list, it may look something like this:
- The world is a rotating sphere, in orbit around the sun, and is the 3rd rock from the sun.
- I am a human being
- Science is reliable and trustworthy
- Most Medical Doctors have our best interests at heart
- Perpetual motion is impossible
- Free energy does not exist
- The Covid19 Virus is very dangerous, and I should be afraid for myself and others
- Gravity works
- Aliens are not real
Pick any of the above, or choose a “fact” of your own, and I will show you how you don’t actually “know”, but instead you are assuming the truth in your belief.
Lets try the first one, “The world is a rotating sphere, in orbit around the sun, and is the 3rd rock from the sun”. Is this a belief, or is it a fact? I personally believe it is true, and I can make a strong argument as to why I believe it is true, however I can not prove this to be true, and neither can you.
- I am not an astrophysicist
- I have never personally been to space
- I can not prove that pictures from space are real, and undoctored…because I did not take them myself.
- I can’t prove that I’m not experiencing a computer generated simulation, and that I myself am only a computer program.
Although I trust that the world is very likely a sphere, I can not prove it. Instead, I prefer to trust the accounts of Astronauts who have gazed from space in wonder at the glory of creation. They say that the planet is a sphere, and I choose to believe them. I choose to have faith in both their honesty, and the accuracy of their perceptions.
If your information is not first hand…then no matter what the topic, you are putting your faith in your sources. If you’re not the scientist who did the research, or performed the experiments, then you are simply reciting what you were told. You don’t know..you are acting out of faith. If you are listening to the scientist who didn’t do the research, or perform the experiments, then you are basing your opinions on the second hand information of someone who doesn’t actually know.
Soctrates was reported as saying, “The only true wisdom, is in knowing that you know nothing”.
Do I know for a fact that this quote is from Socrates? Nope. I don’t know for sure, but I agree with the sentiment all the same. I don’t speak ancient Greek, nor do I know of anyone who does. I have not verified the authenticity of the volume in which this quote was recorded, nor do I personally know anyone who has. I’m guessing. I’m placing my faith in the internet, but I do not know for sure.
Humans like to be certain. Certain of their environment, level of safety, and of their personal identity. Often, we mistake people with higher education as being more certain, but unfortunately, having more information in your brain, doesn’t mean you have a higher understanding of that information. Nor does having information necessarily mean you have the ability to be totally objective. Objectivity is a skill which is accumulated only by those who have a high level of self awareness, and have the ability to accept new information instead of rejecting it without examination.
RE: Covid 19: We don’t know what is true, and what is not. All we can do is our best, but we must be cautious about the motives of our Government during this crisis. Now is not the time for blind faith in Government, it is the time for critical oversight. People with power tend to expand their power at every opportunity. Power is the greatest aphrodisiac known to humankind, and Government power has expanded around the Globe at an alarming pace. Is this all for our own good? I hope so. I also believe that now is the time for vigilance, and critical thinking. The cost of not thinking for ourselves, could be more than any of us are willing to pay.
Asking questions comes at a price. You will be socially shamed, accused of being a conspiracy theorist, and told to put on your tin-foil hat. Just know, the attacks are being generated by weak Egos, which NEED to be certain, and can not tolerate the uncertainty which results from asking questions. It’s not a personal attack on you, it’s a defense of their own fragile Ego…though it certainly feels personal.
It is curiosity, not certainty which is the sign of higher intelligence. The great part, is that you can CHOOSE to be curious, just as you can choose to pretend to be certain. Neither choices require either a high IQ, nor an advanced education.
Which do you choose?
For more stories, visit Todayville Calgary
Graffiti artist completes world’s tallest mural in downtown Calgary
CALGARY — It looms on the edge of downtown a stone’s throw from the Calgary Tower, a splash of colour amid aging buildings, railway tracks, parkades and a steady stream of traffic.
It’s billed as the world’s tallest mural, painted by one of the globe’s top graffiti artists, and is part of a project to turn an austere area of downtown into an expansive open-air urban art gallery.
“The brutalism and dystopian look of this area with the giant parkades and the spiral ramps and stuff — it feels like Gotham. So turning this wall from concrete nothing to this is really fun,” said Peter Oliver, president of the Beltline Urban Murals Project, or BUMP.
The mural is an abstract painting in various shades of orange, black, grey, blue, white and yellow and is the creation of DAIM, an internationally renowned German artist. DAIM, whose real name is Mirko Reisser, has been creating public artworks for more than 30 years.
“DAIM’s work is rooted in graffiti art. It’s abstract and he was actually the very first graffiti artist to start exploring three-dimensional works. So his work kind of obeys the laws of light and shadow but defies the laws of gravity,” Oliver said.
“I think his work really marries well with the brutalism of this building and it’s just a massive flat wall of concrete. It’s the very first prefabricated concrete building in Calgary, built in 1980.”
The mural is 95 metres high, making it the tallest mural in the world “by a long shot,” said Oliver.
He said most cities don’t have giant concrete walls available, with the majority being glass, steel or aluminum. So this was a perfect marriage.
DAIM, who was assisted by three local artists, spent over three weeks painting and went through more than 500 cans of spray paint after a base coat was added to the bare concrete. It is to be a permanent addition to the area and, as of last week, was awaiting a coat of UV sealant to make it complete.
Facing toward the east, it can be seen from a long way away.
“If you’ve got the window seat on the airplane, you can see it on the approach into the airport,” Oliver said.
“I think what we’re really doing with BUMP is re-architecting the identity of this city.”
The project will be unveiling about 60 new murals during its annual festival, which runs from Aug. 1 to 28. Before that, the new art work can be viewed by visitors at the annual Calgary Stampede, which begins this week.
“If you’re coming down, I’d check this out over the parade any day,” Oliver said with a chuckle.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 4, 2022.
Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press
Calgary Stampede receives $10M from federal government to aid recovery from pandemic
Calgary – The Calgary Stampede has received more than $10 million from the federal government to help it bounce back after last year’s event was scaled down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
A report to the city this week showed the Stampede had an operating loss of $8.3 million in 2021.
Last year’s Stampede ran at half capacity because of COVID-19 public health measures and was cancelled all-together the year before.
Daniel Vandal, the federal minister for Prairies Economic Development Canada, says the money aims to support a full-scale Stampede to deliver the “authentic western experience” this year.
He says it would also help to reignite Alberta’s visitor economy.
The 2022 Stampede is set to run from July 8 to 17.
“Festivals large and small were hard hit during the pandemic,” Vandal said in a news release. “They are events where families and friends come together and take in the exciting atmosphere.
“The tourism industry is facing a strong comeback providing quality jobs across the country, showcasing stunning landscapes and offering exciting experiences right here in Alberta.”
The federal government also provided about $1.8 million for four other tourism projects in southern Alberta: Charmed Resorts, Cochrane Tourism Association, Heritage Park and Tourism Calgary.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 30, 2022.
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