How do you define happiness? What makes you happy? Money? A big house? A big fancy car? Maybe a lucrative career? Or something else…
What makes me happy most of all is love. I need someone to love and I need to be loved. It seems I have been looking for love my whole life. Usually in the wrong places or with the wrong person. Before any of my ex-lovers get insulted, what I mean by wrong places is that there was nothing inherently wrong or evil with that person. It is just they were not what I needed and I was not what they needed. In situations like that, the best thing you can do is move on.
I have been married four times, divorced three times and have had several other non-binding relationships. Not that I consider marriage something nonbinding. Human relationships are not written in stone. God has nothing to do with our interpersonal relationships. We manage to screw those up all on our own. Lord knows, I’ve done it enough times in my life. Nothing to be proud of, but also nothing to beat myself up about either. Relationships come and relationships go. That is human nature or nurture, whichever you choose.
Continue reading Happiness is….
“In fact, the realm of freedom does not commence until the point is passed where labor under the compulsion of necessity and of external utility is required. In the very nature of things it lies beyond the sphere of material production in the strict meaning of the term. Just as the savage must wrestle with nature, in order to satisfy his wants, in order to maintain his life and reproduce it, so civilized man has to do it, and he must do it in all forms of society and under all possible modes of production. With his development the realm of natural necessity expands, because his wants increase; but at the same time the forces of production increase, by which these wants are satisfied. The freedom in this field cannot consist of anything else but of the fact that socialized man, the associated producers, regulate their interchange with nature rationally, bring it under their common control, instead of being ruled by it as by some blind power; they accomplish their task with the least expenditure of energy and under conditions most adequate to their human nature and most worthy of it. But it always remains a realm of necessity. Beyond it begins that development of human power, which is its own end, the true realm of freedom, which, however, can flourish only upon that realm of necessity as its basis.”
Karl Marx Capital Volume III
For most people, those who qualify as vulgar Marxists, means of production means economic production, that is, things like factories, machines, and natural resources used in production likes iron and coal. However, as is clear from the quote above from Marx, the means of production go way beyond economic production to include things like ideas, religion, and other aspects of culture/society that we consider necessary. For a really good look at what I’m talking about, I suggest reading Marshall Sahlins Culture and Practical Reason. Sahlins discusses specially the production of advertising in Marxist terms. Very interesting! Continue reading Means of Production: Capitalism versus Socialism
In 1905 Max Weber, one of the most influential social theorists, published probably his most widely read book, The Protestant Ethic and The Spirit of Capitalism, in which he argues that one of the most influential ideas of the reformation was that material success was a measure of spiritual favor. Weber also argues that this was the main driving force behind the rise of Capitalism of Western Europe and, of course the United States. i am not going to discuss the theological trail or implications of Weber’s hypothesis in this blog. Rather, I will discuss it in my Christian Heresiology blog when we discuss the reformation as heresy, which it is. Continue reading The Protestant Ethic And The Spirit of Capitalism Revisited
A commercial predicting the “End of America as we Know it” has been getting some exposure recently on some cable TV stations. The commercial claims to be extremely controversial and sends you to this website to watch a somewhat lengthy video.
I watched most of the video, turning it off only when it became, as I expected, a sales pitch. The person who did the video claims to be, and perhaps is – I did not research him – an investment research specialist with a excellent, or so he claims, track record. The gist of his message is that the United States is facing an imminent currency crisis of apocalyptic proportions. What he appears to be selling, based on the little of his sales pitch that I did see is his advice on how to prophet from this catastrophe. To quote John Cougar Mellencamp, “Isn’t that America?” Only in America is it considered “ethical” to profit from other people’s suffering. Continue reading Gloom and Doom for Fun and Profit