Monthly Archives: June 2011

‎”The blues is the difference between what you want and what you got” – more or less as was told to me by a Chicago Jazz musician.

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Posted by on June 6, 2011 in Quote


The experience of name-dropping

You have a famous friend called Serena*. When you mention that “Serena is a friend of mine” in conversation, does it FEEL different when you are ‘name-dropping’ that she is your friend vs. when you merely describing that she is your friend? How does ‘name-dropping’ FEEL different from just ‘describing’?

* ‘Serena’ could also be a e.g. famous university/institution you worked at, or a noteworthy accomplishment etc.



Does ‘sorry’ mean ‘I regret causing you pain or suffering’ or does it mean ‘Please don’t disapprove of me, reject me, think I am bad, tell other people I am bad etc.’?



Generalisation temptation: The motivation or ‘temptation’ to generalise a very limited number of examples (even one) to a ‘fact’ about reality for egotistical purposes. For example – so as to feel knowledgeable, to reduce uncertainty, to impress others with your knowledge, to increase one’s confidence in making negative judgments about people/groups and so feel superior etc.


An 8-year old girl, pointing to her arm asks: “Daddy, where is my ‘self’? Is it in my arm?”


Truth is an acquired taste. Its easier to spend your whole life honing your skills in proving yourself to ‘be right’ and to put truth firmly aside. Work hard enough and you could become a Grandmaster of self-deception. But even then there will always be small gaps in your armour …

Part 2:

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Posted by on June 6, 2011 in Observation, Politics


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Style is enchanting, but when they are in competition, choose substance. If you can tell the difference.

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Posted by on June 6, 2011 in Self-deception


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Truth is an acquired taste – in the same way that vulnerability is an acquired taste. Why would anyone willingly expose themselves to being wrong, again and again and again …?

“Winning does not tempt that man.
His growth is this: to be defeated
by ever greater forces.”


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Posted by on June 6, 2011 in Aphorism, Poem, Quote



Empathy and egotism 1

Empathy is the capacity to recognize/share feelings with another.

But could/should you empathise with someone who says:

“I just saw this deformed man on the street. He made me feel horrible. Those people should just stay at home!”

Perhaps our capacity to empathise with another human being depends on whether we share a similar level of egotism?

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Posted by on June 6, 2011 in Ego, Ego-threat


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What if we were to think of happiness ‘spatially’? e.g. I am not happy, but happiness feels ‘close’. I am ‘in’ happiness now / in the presence of happiness now, but yesterday happiness felt like it was a million miles away.

This is not an ‘original’ idea, but I have not yet seen it used it in surveys or in psychology.,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=bb87acda14707407&biw=1007&bih=427

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Posted by on June 6, 2011 in Measurement, Psychology


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