Yesterday wound up being an interesting day. Got the New Trick Podcast studio up and running last night and conducted the first production meeting. I haven’t talked about this project much, and I am not at liberty to go off just yet, but I will say that it is the type of radio show that won’t be for the easily offended. That being said, it will also be a radio show about the failings of our society, the solutions, and hopefully a fair number of success stories based around folks who see the deception and are changing their lives for the better. A few of you have likely noticed the “#newtrickpodcast” come up in posts from time to time with Steve Weimer. We’ve been working diligently when we could, between bad news and break-ups, to get this thing off the ground. After a few months of preparation, the show will air soon. I will keep everyone up to date.
So I talked more with the lass who felt so insulted that I would foist my hardline and extremist evolutionary rhetoric on her (my words not hers). I can tell she’s torn. Hell, I am torn. She is amazing and wonderful on every imaginable level except for this denial of physics. I imagine she thinks a whole bunch of wonderful things about me, leaving only this difference in how the world is seen.
The whole “mess” (that is how she put it) reminded me what Chris suggested a few weeks ago, which I have started trying to plug back into being, of course, writing about my atheism more often. I listened. Deciding to take his suggestion and to put my philosophy in context with the new habits of meditation and a new lexicon of memetical opinions, offshoots from the original foundations of philosophy that I have been studying for a decade unofficially, officially for the last six years. The integration of a spirituality into an atheistic format has been a challenge for sure, but one that has come more naturally than I think anyone could have predicted, or at least near impossible for anyone who hasn’t seen that type of transformation. Allow me, Gentle Reader, to provide a synopsis of my hypothesis for why this is.
As a man of certain scientific integrity, the respect I have for the placebo phenomenon is extremely high. Science is rife with evidence of self healing and I think that meditation can bring similar types of physiological behavior. More accurately, that the types of thinking one can find through different types of Mindfulness and Lovingkindness-and-forgiveness meditations will open the body up to self healing phenomenon observed in placebo situations. My hunch is that ritual can also have this patterned effect. If a person believes that they will get well, sometimes they can. There is a second level to this theory.
I have a FB acquaintance, Rick, who has had copious amounts of life threatening problems based on pharmacological malpractice. This makes sense. His doctors threw chemicals at him without once addressing the thought patterns he had under this bombardment of medicine. My guess is that truly effective drugs can only be administered healthily if the thoughts of the patient are being treated as well. Some medicine is strong enough to help, even on the most pessimistic of patients, but this doesn’t make the strategy sound and makes it even less sustainable.
The woman who is on the fence with me has commented to me before, and I agree, that I get my spirituality from science. Spiritual needs are just like the effects of placebo—they are all in our heads, but can cause a real enough effect to discuss and examine.
I had a good conversation this morning with my music student about the role of the soul. It is simple for me. As soon as somebody gives me a testable way to show me that the soul in fact, without belief, connects to physiology via a mechanism, tether, line of wonder stuff, or whatever then I won’t need to believe; it’ll just be part of reality. During the intervening period, I will stick to what spirituality does do for me: allow me to take a self administrated placebo as much as I want with the only side effect being time spent on meditation rather than television, playing within my own mind as opposed to playing Facebook games; providing a platform for playback so that when I do hurt somebody or am unkind to myself I can notice and make it right; and bring me into communities and helping me to discover connections with people new and old, like minded and otherwise. Outside of that, I don’t know what possible impact spirituality or souls could make in this life, in this moment, on this rock, right mother-fucking now. Prost!