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The #Compassion #Project, Only #Compassion #Defeats #Dehumanization

Different from empathy and sympathy compassion is the strength to be willing to try and ease someone's suffering, to help them ho...

Monday, October 3, 2016

The #Compassion #Project, Only #Compassion #Defeats #Dehumanization

Different from empathy and sympathy compassion is the strength to be willing to try and ease someone's suffering, to help them hold on and eventually stand up, or to let go at the end, yourself included. Equality, love, forgiveness, and peace, all require compassion to be real and lasting.

Compassion doesn't have to be a "deep sorrow", just the willingness to be moved to ease the pain of another, the willingness to care. It is hard, maybe impossible, to take compassion too far.

You cannot win a war against something that you are actively creating or promoting, such as Poverty, Drugs, Crime, Racism, or Unemployment. AIDS was human-created but the epidemic was spread through irresponsible conduct, ignorance, the War on Drugs, the War on Poverty, the War on Sexuality, the War on Terrorism, and the Privilege War created by hierarchy.  All wars of dehumanization. 

Continuing its generation while trying to destroy it creates an infinite loop that becomes a downward spiral. 

Most, if not all of these are disorders of personal, moral, social, or systemic health. Do we want to destroy or heal? 

Civilization is a compassion project created to help not harm. First, do no harm.

Total empathy, actually feeling each other’s pain, would just multiply and spread it, traumatizing everyone. Compassion tries to share and reduce everyone’s pain. It starts with the self and expands, rather than sucking you into internal misery. 

We can end pain. Pain is part of life, development, love, and healing. We can try to make its smaller and easier to bear. Without compassion even love is toxic.

We can wilfully try to dominate and destroy or we can try to nurture, treat wounds, and improve general health rather than inflicting more damage. Weapons and war can never heal.  Only compassionate care can.  Treat don’t defeat. You only end up defeating yourself.  You don’t improve health by attacking but by dealing with the problem.  Our antibiotic war on microbes, including preventive strikes, perfectly demonstrates this. You end up attacking allies and enemies and your body, the weapons only making the enemy stronger.  We don’t usually destroy diseases, medicines and vaccines usually help the body to deal with them so that they are no longer threats and might even become helpful. 

That’s adaptation and evolutionary fitness. That’s compassion.

Compassion disarms while making us all stronger and healthier.

Compassion is the purpose for which we are here, for civilization, and perhaps life. Life is evolution toward compassion, the ultimate practical guarantee of genetic diversity and continuity. That is the only right nature grants us and the root of all others we define. 

A single cell doesn’t create anything but clones through division, without help and a level of cooperation. Without a level of compassion for self, group, and life itself , the ability to treat the other as more similar than different than the self, there can be no ability to work toward a common purpose or goal, only individual benefit, contribution, and competition. 

That’s how sacrifice, heroism, civilization, and positive revolution are possible. Otherwise life is trapped competitive self-reproduction through the destruction of others. An ecosystem is more creative, adaptive, and fit than the most rugged individual but neither can exist in a state of healthy progress without the other. 

The Compassion Project is the universal human project but it starts with yourself. You only need enough will-power to choose to try. Addictions to drugs, violence, risk, food, hate, judging, anger, privilege, or wealth, can’t be defeated, but they can be treated with compassion and potentially healed, if only enough to stop it being a disorder to life. Greed, pride, lust, sloth, anger, and the rest, are all addictions that are disorders in thinking, society, and life; sins against progress and compassion. 

Will-power alone is not enough. Manipulating reality through sheer will-power would be magic. It only enables you enables you to choose compassion. Only then is true recovery and health possible.

According to the Christian Bible, compassion gave Jesus the love to experience total empathy with our pain, enabling his sacrifice to have meaning. Compassion redeems, resurrects, and perfects, life, but only the divine can bear total empathy.  

The Compassion Project has one central principle/axiom/law/regulation/commandment:

Thou Shalt Not Be An Ass-Hole, Even To Thy Self.

Love is far too complicated an idea for us to mange to Love Thy Neighbour as Thy Self.

First, you need compassion for yourself. This enables you to have more for others.

Don’t be an ass-hole. Promote compassion for yourself and others. You deserve it. We all do.

There is no justice without it.

There is no civilization.

There is no humanity.

Only compassion defeats dehumanization.

Compassion doesn't have to be a "deep sorrow", just the willingness to be moved to ease the pain of another, the willingness to care. To see another person and their suffering as  like your own, regardless of cause, because they are like you. The Golden Rule is based on nature's laws, physics, not belief or faith. Actions get returned with equal force. Compassion is the straightest path that prevents the action from being bounced off at an angle, distracted from its intention and altered to produce a different effect.  Love has too many angles. Deep sorrow would be too close to total empathy, actually experiencing the pain of another. According to the story, there was only one person capable of actually feeling all our pain and surviving, but he sweated blood.

We don't have to sweat blood, just be willing to care and do something.

You don't have to be the sole cause of brilliant, widespread, irresistible, earthshaking, change, just a part of the critical mass needed to start a chain-reaction. 

That’s the Project.

If he didn't say it, he should have.

Even an anus gives a crap occasionally, only an ass-hole doesn't. An ass-hole only forces through undigested assumptions.

Conservatism is supposed to be based on caution not ruthlessness, caution through tradition and restraint in politics, economics, society, ethics, etc., while being liberal is supposed to be more adventurous, open, experimental, hopeful, and not judgmental.  Both should be based on compassion. Many modern conservatives call #compassion evil, a weakness, while they #dehumanize everyone but themselves. Evil always claims sole virtue, value & quality. The heart bleeds into the arteries to keep the body alive. If it doesn’t the heart becomes cold, hard, and dead, a zombie, ghoul, or vampire feeding on society, like conservatism has in modern times, nothing positive to contribute, only negativity.  They forget that wedges sever permanently and can kill their users.
Armstrong urges us to follow the lead of the Buddha.
"The Buddha looked at the world… with compassion and saw the world in pain and spent the next 40 years of his life trying to help people to live with their pain. This is our message now. This is what every one of us can do: to increase awareness of the pain of the world, to let it disturb us. It's not easy... We should all be sweating with the effort of how to bring the message of compassion - that alone can save our world - to public awareness."
 An essential part of my Compassion Project is debunking terms of oppression, creating a firm, clear, definition of good and evil upon which to build an ethical foundation that is acceptable from both a religious and philosophical viewpoint, and to identity humanizers, dehumanizing actions, and evil in general, to call it what it is instead of a hard-liner or bad. You never hear of a hard-libner dbeing oso over something beneficial and a misbehaving dog is bad. Evil is evil and evil is dehumanization, as further explored in the linked post below.

#Compassion & #Dehumanization, Firmly #Defining #Good & #Evil

The following is a copy of my post

 #Debunking #Terms of #Oppression

"There are no people who actually have true black, white, red, or yellow skin."
 Everyone has the right to choose a word as a name to help define themselves. Please be careful which word you pick. Don't pick words like "garbage", "object", "tool", "resource", "victim". or "Hitler". The weight of prior associations may keep you down. Trying to change "Hitler" to define "goodness" may require far too much struggle, time, and blood, to be worth it. Choose a less tangled word or create one that helps point to your individuality, uniqueness, or common humanity.

Skin Color Adaptation
Human skin color is quite variable around the world.  It ranges from a very dark brown among some Africans, Australian Aborigines, and Melanesians to a near yellowish pink among some Northern Europeans.  There are no people who actually have true black, white, red, or yellow skin. These are commonly used color terms that do not reflect biological reality.
Skin color is due primarily to the presence of a pigment called melanin , which is controlled by at least 6 genes.  Both light and dark complexioned people have melanin.  However, two forms are produced--pheomelanin , which is red to yellow in color, and eumelanin, which is dark brown to black. People with light complexioned skin mostly produce pheomelanin, while those with dark colored skin mostly produce eumelanin.  In addition, individuals differ in the number and size of melanin particles.  The latter two variables are more important in determining skin color than the percentages of the different kinds of melanin.  In lighter skin, color is also affected by red cells in blood flowing close to the skin.  To a lesser extent, the color is affected by the presence of fat under the skin and carotene , a reddish-orange pigment in the skin.  Hair color is also due to the presence of melanin.

Created and maintained by Dr. Dennis O'Neil
Behavioral Sciences Department, Palomar College, San Marcos, California
Copyright © 1998-2013 by Dennis O'Neil. All rights reserved.
Paleness isn't a blessing that signifies superiority but a curse that renders sunlight painful and dangerous to eyes and skin. I'm practically vampiric myself. White superiority may be similar in some ways to penis envy, hatred self weakness transposed upon the truly superior adaptation of the visible other, as well as resentment of their purity, when you think of Africans as being the original and pure homo-sapiens, lacking other genes and influences. We're all their descendants.

The institution and protection of power and privilege through division, exploitation, and oppression are universal corrupting evils within and between groups regardless how they are defined. Skin colour is the simplest visual division, false like most excuses, but effective as a uniform that draws justified hate away from those deserving of revilement rather than profit. 

Humans are earth-toned. We're ALL brown.

Race and Class are invalid concepts created by those trying to use them to support their claims of quality of a higher nature than that of those they oppress. The idea of Race was created by racists, Class by the privileged, both used to convince the oppressed that they deserve and can't change it. Both create "natural orders", levels of privileged infantilization that provide the oppressed the change to oppress those below them in the tradition of bullying. Bullies blame their victims.

Class may be correctly used to describe quality of behaviour but not person. Race more closely describe the differences between homo sapiens and neanderthals than among homo sapiens.

We are variations of one race, one colour, our actions determining our class. The rest is ethnicity, culture, and opportunity. We must reject the divisive false labels of oppression and its false benevolence. We don't need them. Their privilege can't exist without us. Its is our power that they wield, our wealth that they enjoy. They stand on our backs telling us to be grateful for the employment. Regardless of appearance, gender, sexuality, location, belief, background, or work, the oppressed are the oppressed. We are legion. We are one.

Class and race aren't separate, they are a continuum, a spectrum, a hierarchy, created to protect the privilege and control of the few.  Class creates false division within a group, race is the class applied to outsiders. Once some consider the English, French, and Germans to be separate "races". Race is the class lower than the lowest, beyond untouchable. Sub-human. By extension, the middle-class are sub-human compared to the so-called upper-class, who consider themselves to be the only pure/quality humans. Women have long been oppressed by the concept of purity and viewed as lesser humans.

If you accept racist-created categories to define yourself you help the oppressor by perpetuating the false divide. Divide and conquer. Turn the oppressed against each other. That's how 1% can control 99%. By definition, white and black are irreconcilable absolute opposites. One positive and one negative. Brown, as a third division has no relation to either as a colour. The acceptance of the division prevents any common ground. Focusing on differences, especially essentially minor ones, is the basis of discrimination. We all deserve basic respect.

Dehumanization is the universal evil whether you are reduced to a surface colour, facial features, a level of wealth, an accent, a religion, a consumer, a job, a market, an investor, a tax-payer, a gender, a sexual orientation a body size, or a medical condition. It has been the historical norm that anything we view as less than human gets abused, exploited, or destroyed. No one is less than human.

Facts are the only defense against false belief and lies. Fear always dehumanizes and division only makes it stronger.

We are all created equal and are stronger together. The struggle is ours, not theirs.

It is a fact that Black Lives Matter because all lives do, including those with mental or developmental disorders. We can't change history but we can make changes now. Or we can continue to let fear rule by division.

Ideas can have more power than the sun and be more destructive than a black hole. They are what makes us unique, as far as we know. But what do we really know? Facts are vital for survival.

The first act of war is dehumanization and the first casualty the truth.

The Privilege War began long before humans. Nature's laws make survival and mating privileges. Life only has the right to try.

Only we have the ability to make more compassionate laws than Nature. We have the Right, Reason, and Responsibility, to try. That's what makes us human.

Just as there are no such things as truly black or white humans, the idea of a "pure" human is absurd. The human body contain more microbe DNA than human. Each of us is a ecosystem, a diverse community working for the common good, when in healthy balance. Unbalanced, some work against the community and everything can break down. The body rejects its own parts as foreign and attacks itself. It's protection system kills it.

"Common sense" says that objects possess colour. Colours actually exist as frequencies of light that are either absorbed or reflected by pigments in the objects. The rejected frequencies are what we observe as an object's colour, when really it contains every colour except the ones visible. Black is produced by a total lack of light or its complete absorption. It contains no colour or all colour. Green pigments reject green light. White rejects all colours equally. Should we define ourselves  by what our skin rejects, by what we are not?  Then why not call ourselves Martian gods?

Colourblindness is a medical disorder usually created by a lack of colour sensors in the eyes or brain. We shouldn't be colourblind, but we should see the colours that are actually entering our eyes.

"Black" is darkness.  A "black" mood, experience, day, or life can only be negative, a deficiency, a void, an abyss.  Otherwise it is no longer "black". Light enters the darkness and we can see.

Symbols are what we define them to be. Colours are symbols, like stars. Some people claim to be blue (bloods), implying purity and quality of lineage. The only reason that we don't have purple people is that we haven't assigned a moral or social status to it beyond the clothing of Roman emperor. And that went out of fashion. Ultramarine blue replaced it as the colour of "nobility".

Facts are the only steady, real light we have in the darkness of ideology. Don't let them be filtered through a colored lens, particularly one created by those who are half-blind to humanity. Those unable to see a clear reality. A lens rarely provides better vision than its creator's. You come to see as they do and we tend to believe what we see.

We've become trapped in a shared illusion created with the darkest magic of the  mind. We need to see through the glamour to what's real. Change will appear impossible and nothing will seem to change until we BREAK the spell. We need to see what's real to take effective action and stop fighting ourselves.

According to existing, repeatedly verified, evidence, other races exist only in fantasy literature. Racism is a real ideology that devours everything it contacts. Evil is dehumanization.

Recognize it as what it is and call it such.

Their glamour is our nightmare .

Wake Up!

No one is less than human.

The problem with shouting "Black Lives Matter" at racists and a racist system is that they would largely agree. Except, they view blacks lives  as mattering no more than any subhuman animal, even though humans are animals. Another oppressive false division because we're not mineral or vegetables. To them you are saying that "black" lives matter more than theirs.They can only think in hierarchy. You have to stand on someone. As long as they fear being dragged down, Trey will punch down. The weight of oppression pushes down, each level upon the lower multiplying and building until it explodes upward. But, instead of destroying the hierarchy it is usually used to reorganize it.

Individualism and hierarchy have declared war on community and egalitarianism. If we don't try to establish a balance, it could destroy us all. Especially if we fight it for them. If we oppress ourselves. If we compete in a Oppression Olympics instead instead of recognize that we all have value talents and knowledge, and a role to play.
If being "Black" means having an African ancestry, then we are all "Black". Humanity is ancient, ongoing African diaspora. We all descend from a small number of early humans. We're all cousins, or closer. dysfunctional, but a family by blood, relation. We're not strangers, just estranged. There are no "others", just "the othered", the disowned. We're teenagers forming cliques. 

We're just a large family competing violently over an inheritance that we all share.

The universal good is compassion. It's the basis for for human laws and really the only law we truly need. Goodness is compassion.

Dehumanization and compassion are black and white.

Humanity is not a privilege. It is our responsibility to be compassionate. Otherwise we are actually less than the other animals. They have no reason and no choice.
You cannot have effective communication without agreed upon, firm definitions as a beginning. Otherwise, you end up talking about two different things and there can never be agreement or negotiation, only confused disagreement and escalating anger. Both sides could be right or wrong but there is no way to tell. They're just throwing apples and oranges at each other. They aren't speaking the same language. Language divides as powerfully as it unites.

You aren't considered truly conscious until you define yourself as a self, forming a theory of mind to become a self-aware individual. Only then can you consider others. Language is how we form concepts and express them in life. If mind is a theory, it can be altered by additional concepts. A word can make all the difference. Ideas are harder to defeat than armies because they attack invisibly from within. They can become self-realizing and self-defeating. Defines are the basis of organized thought. Blueprints are definitions. Laws are definitions. Genomes are definitions. It is madness without them.

Colours mark, identify, protect, warn, attract, and confuse. They don't define. White, red, pink, yellow, and black roses are all roses.

That's just my view from the outside edge.

Mistaken Identities: Colour - Kwame Anthony Appiah argues for a world free of racial fixations

In Part 3 of 2016 BBC Reith Lectures, philosopher and cultural theorist Kwame Anthony Appiah argues for a world free of racial fixations.
In Part 3 of 2016 BBC Reith Lectures, philosopher and cultural theorist Kwame Anthony Appiah argues for a world free of racial fixations. (BBC Radio )

In the 2016 BBC Reith Lectures, philosopher and cultural theorist Kwame Anthony Appiah considers Creed, Country, Colour, and Culture. He argues that we over-emphasize scripture in our view of faith; that our concept of nationhood is usually mythical and romantic; that race is 'something we make, not something that makes us"; and that the idea of "Western" civilization is far too limiting. But, he suggests, a broader perspective on all of these offers genuine hope for the world. Recorded in London, Glasgow, Accra in his native Ghana, and New York.

**Please note: This episode is not available to download. Streaming audio is available for listening until February 10, 2017

What makes us who we are?  Is it our religion?  Our nation?  Our race?  Our traditions? None of these things? All of them?

In the third of his Reith Lectures, philosopher and cultural theorist Kwame Anthony Appiah argues for a world free of racial fixations.

He tells the story of Anton Wilhelm Amo Afer. He was 5-years-old when he was brought from the Gold Coast to Germany in 1707, educated at a royal court and became an eminent philosopher. He argues that this elaborate Enlightenment experiment illuminates a series of mistaken ideas , including that there is a "racial essence" which all members of that race carry. Modern science long ago disproved this, as almost all of the world's genetic variation is found within every so-called racial group.

The lecture is recorded in front of an audience at the British Council in Accra, Ghana. The series is presented and chaired by Sue Lawley.​

Kwame Anthony Appiah grew up in Ghana and in London, the son of a Ghanaian independence leader and an English mother. He's taught at some of the world's top universities, and has written extensively about ethics, honour, and cosmopolitanism.  He's also a novelist, and now teaches philosophy and law at New York University.

Related websites:
**The producer of the Reith Lectures for the BBC is Jim Frank.
**The producer of this episode for IDEAS is Dave Redel.

Everything is Always in Process
Only Compassion Defeats Dehumanization