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Veronique Coppens

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Philosophy

The state is that great fiction by which everyone tries to live at the expense of everyone else.

 

 

Claude Frédéric Bastiat, 30 June 1801 – 24 December 1850, was a French classical liberal theorist, political economist, and member of the French assembly. He was notable for developing the important economic concept of opportunity cost, and for penning the influential Parable of the Broken Window. His ideas have gone on to provide a foundational basis for libertarian and the Austrian schools of thought.

 

Friedrich Nietzsche

 

Philosophically, Nietzsche is a mystic and an irrationalist. His metaphysics consists of a somewhat “Byronic” and mystically “malevolent” universe; his epistemology subordinates reason to “will,” or feeling or instinct or blood or innate virtues of character.

Introduction to the Fountainhead
The Objectivist, March 1968, 6.

Philosophy

Byronic Hero

 

The Byronic hero is a variant of the Romantic hero as a type of character, named after the English Romantic poet Lord Byron.

Both Byron's life and writings have been considered in different ways to exemplify the type. The Byronic hero first appears in Byron's semi-autobiographical epic narrative poem Childe Harold's Pilgrimage (1812–1818), and was described by the historian and critic Lord Macaulay as "a man proud, moody, cynical, with defiance on his brow, and misery in his heart, a scorner of his kind, implacable in revenge, yet capable of deep and strong affection".

Philosophy

In my Beginning is my End.

 

Thomas Stearns Eliot OM (26 September 1888 – 4 January 1965) was an essayist, publisher, playwright, literary and social critic and one of the twentieth century's major poets. He was born in St. Louis, Missouri to an old Yankee family. However he emigrated to England in 1914 (at age 25) and was naturalised as a British subject in 1927 at age 39.

Eliot attracted widespread attention for his poem The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock (1915), which is seen as a masterpiece of the Modernist movement. It was followed by some of the best-known poems in the English language, including The Waste Land (1922), The Hollow Men (1925), Ash Wednesday (1930) and Four Quartets (1945).

He is also known for his seven plays, particularly Murder in the Cathedral (1935). He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948, for his outstanding, pioneer contribution to present-day poetry.

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Butoh

Every Butoh performance itself is an ultimate expression... If Butoh dancers were content with less than the ultimate, they would not be actually dancing Butoh, for real Butoh, like real life itself, cannot be given rankings. — Iwana Masaki

Butoh is the collective name for a diverse range of activities, techniques and motivations for dance, performance, or movement inspired by Ankoku-Butoh (Dance of Utter Darkness) movement. It typically involves playful and grotesque imagery, taboo topics, extreme or absurd environments, and is traditionally performed in white body makeup with slow hyper-controlled motion, with or without an audience. There is no set style, and it may be purely conceptual with no movement at all. Its origins have been attributed to Japanese dance legends Tatsumi Hijikata and Kazuo Ohno.

Jung tires me. He learned everything, he suspected it all, brought attention to the transpersonal, to the collective unconscious, to the ‘we’, but he remained locked in his elephantine ego.

 

Alejandro Jodorowsky, born 17 February 1929, is a Chilean-French filmmaker, playwright, actor, author, musician, comics writer and spiritual guru. Best known for his avant-garde films, he has been "venerated by cult cinema enthusiasts" for his work which "is filled with violently surreal images and a hybrid blend of mysticism and religious provocation."

Read more here.

Philosophy

I am looking forward enormously to getting back to the sea again, where the overstimulated psyche can recover in the presence of that infinite peace and spaciousness.

 

Carl Gustav Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist and psychotherapist who founded analytical psychology. Jung proposed and developed the concepts of extraversion and introversion; archetypes, and the collective unconscious. His work has been influential in psychiatry and in the study of religion, philosophy, archeology, anthropology, literature, and related fields.

The central concept of analytical psychology is individuation – the psychological process of integrating the opposites, including the conscious with the unconscious, while still maintaining their relative autonomy. Jung considered individuation to be the central process of human development.

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Why I am not a Christian

Bertrand Arthur William Russell, born in 1872, Trellech, United Kingdom. The mathemetician, philosopher, logician and essayist engages in a brief yet compelling discussion questioning the practical necessity for religion and theist dogma.

Russell described himself as an agnostic, "speaking popularly" and "in regard to the Christian God", and also "speaking to a purely philosophical audience". For most of his adult life Russell maintained that religion is little more than superstition and, despite any positive effects that religion might have, it is largely harmful to people.

He believed that religion and the religious outlook (he considered Communism, Capitalism, Secular Humanism, Socialism, and other systematic ideologies to be forms of religion) serve to impede knowledge and foster fear and dependency, and are responsible for much of the war, oppression, and misery that have beset the world.

Philosophy

Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.

 

Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, and social critic. At various points in his life he considered himself a liberal, a socialist, and a pacifist, but he also admitted that he had never been any of these in any profound sense. He was born in Monmouthshire, into one of the most prominent aristocratic families in Britain.

Philosophy

I offer a modest solution: Find the cracks in the wall. There are a very few lunatic entrepreneurs who will understand that culture and design are not about fatter wallets, but about creating a future. They will understand that wealth is means, not an end. Under other circumstances they may have turned out to be like you, creative lunatics.

 

Tibor Kalman was an American graphic designer known for his work as editor-in-chief of Colors magazine, an off-shoot of fashion label United Colors of Benetton. He was also a founder of design firm M&Co and worked as a creative director for Interview Magazine and art director for Art Forum. Until his death in 1999, Kalman was married to illustator and author Maira Kalman. 

Kahlil Gibran, Work, Henry Miller, Atlas Shrugged

Philosophy

Money and How It Gets That Way
Posted
Wednesday, 01.08.2012

All work is empty save when there is love; work is love made visible. These are the words of renowned author and poet Kahlil Gibran. Ever since we were born, we have been made to attain a distant calling, and what can be more edifying to our natural inborn gift when we are awaken to the realization that it’s a dream made real on Earth. We work because it’s our livelihood, our sustenance – and when it manifests itself as a passion, it doesn’t even feel like work.


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Alain de Botton

 

I agree with people who say I'm not a "real" philosopher. I only ever call myself a writer and leave the sacred term to academics.

Find more intellectual tidbits on his Twitteria.

Philosophy

Art that can not shape society and therefore also can not penetrate the heart questions of society, [and] in the end influence the question of capital, is no art.

 
Appeal for an Alternative, Social Sculpture

Philosophy

Appeal for an Alternative
Posted
Friday, 20.04.2012

Before considering the question WHAT CAN WE DO, we have to look into the question HOW MUST WE THINK?  


Beuy’s manifesto was first published in the newspaper Frankfurter Rundschau in December 1978 to later become the fundamental document of Germany’s alternative green party. Though expressing a utopian view which calls for an integrated social sculpture and collective human consciousness, it echoes our current global news climate. From the arms rice disguised under the façade of disarmament talks to the plundering of lifelines in our ecological system, strikes and lockouts and soaring unemployment rates worldwide, not much has changed over the past thirty years. Still there is the “monetary crisis”, the “crisis of democracy”, the “education crisis”, the “energy crisis”, the “crisis of legitimacy of the state”, the list goes on. But what then with the crisis of consciousness and meaning? 


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Philosophy

Substitute damn every time you’re inclined to write very; your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.

 

Mark Twain

Samuel Langhorne Clemens (November 30, 1835 – April 21, 1910), better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He is most noted for his novels, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876), and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), the latter often called "the Great American Novel."

Philosophy

Nietzsche on Stupidity

 

We are feeling the consequences of the doctrine, preached lately from all the housetops, that the state is the highest end of man and there is no higher duty than to serve it: I regard this not a relapse into paganism, but into stupidity. A man who thinks state-service to be his highest duty, very possibly knows no higher one; yet there are both men and duties in a region beyond, — and one of these duties, that seems to me at least of higher value than state-service, is to destroy stupidity in all its forms — and this particular stupidity among them.

Excerpt from Schopenhauer as Educator

Philosophy

There are five ways in which men pass through life: as gentlemen, warriors, farmers, artisans and merchants.

 

Miyamoto Musashi, was a Japanese swordsman and rōnin.

“When two flashing swords meet there is no place to escape, move on coolly, like a lotus flower blooming in the midst of a roaring fire and forcefully pierce the Heavens!”

 

By Tekisui, the abbot of Tenruji, Yamaoka Tesshu

Philosophy

Koan
Posted
Thursday, 01.12.2011

Upon meditating on an old koan from Tekisui, the abbot of Tenruji, Yamaoka Tesshu, one of the last great swordsman of Japan was finally able to defeat his teacher Asair Gimei in a decisive match.

Word mazes known as koans were created to release the mind from rational thoughts and allow intuition to find truth in the mystery. A Zen garden was also considered a visual koan just as nature which asks a person walking in its midst questions without answers. Each approach was an invitation to meditation and abstraction where one is left to find the key to their own quintessence. 

Philosophy

Posted
Wednesday, 30.11.2011

Throughout epic literature, fictional films and mythology, swords – especially those with names – were the marks of great heroes. King Arthur’s Excalibur; the image of Star Wars’ Darth Vader crossing saber beams with Luke Skywalker; Beowulf’s Hrunting; Ulysses’ Aor in the Iliad; Charlemagne’s Flamberge (“The Flame Cutter”); Japanese legend, Ama No Murakumo Tsurugi (“Sword of the Gathering Clouds of Heaven”); and Siegried’s Nothung from the Niebulungenlied – in each instance, the swords possess a form of mystical or superstitious undertow. The coltello d’amore is a real life example of this custom. In certain areas of central and southern Italy there was a widespread tradition of giving knives as tokens of engagement or marriage gifts. The blades were inscribed with hearts, doves, flowering branches or the initials of the lovers. It was also embellished with the “occhi di dado” a true amulet meant to ward off the evil eye.


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Philosophy

In swordsmanship, always train and discipline yourself, But don’t show it – hide it, be modest about it.

 

Yagyū Sekishūsai Taira-no-Munetoshi was a samurai in Japan’s Sengoku period famous for mastering the Shinkage-ryū school of combat, and introducing it to the Tokugawa clan.

Einstein and Freud on War

 

In 1932 Albert Einstein was contacted by the League of Nations, an international organisation upon which the United Nations is currently predicated. Asked to select an interlocutor to converse with about a critical problem or question, he chose to ask the following: “Is there any way of delivering humankind from the menace of war?” Einstein selected Sigmund Freud and the correspondence was published under the title On War.

Read full article here.

Tranquilize your mind every morning, and imagine the moment when you may be torn and mangled by arrows, guns, lances, and swords, swept away by great waves, thrown into fire, struck down by thunderbolts, shaken by earthquakes, falling from a precipice, dying of a disease, or dead from an unexpected accident; die every morning in your mind, and then you will not fear death.

 

From the he Book of the Samurai, Analects of Nabeshima or Hagakure Analects.

Video

How to Pronounce Pseudo

The prefix pseudo- (from Greek ψευδής "lying, false") is used to mark something as false, fraudulent, or pretending to be something it is not.

Heaven is a fairy tale.

 

I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail, Hawking told the Guardian's Ian Sample. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.

 

Read entire article on The Guardian.

Philosophy

Production is the application of reason to the problem of survival.

 

The philosopy of Ayn Rand
More Infos on Ayn Rand

If you don’t paint you can’t be a painter; if you don’t write you can’t be a writer; if you don’t film something you’re not a filmmaker.

 

The filmmaker says that transcendent moments of clarity and inspiration are what drives his art. Here, he describes a particularly inspiring moment from the filming of his second film "Before Night Falls."

Watch Julian Schnabel on BigThink.

Philosophy

Julian Schnabel on Creativity
Posted
Friday, 08.04.2011

If you don’t paint you can’t be a painter; if you don’t write you can’t be a writer; if you don’t film something you’re not a filmmaker.

The filmmaker says that transcendent moments of clarity and inspiration are what drives his art. Here, he describes a particularly inspiring moment from the filming of his second film "Before Night Falls."

Watch Julian Schnabel on BigThink.

The unexamined life is not worth living.

 

Socrates, Greek Athenian philosopher

Philosophy

Quote: Socrates
Posted
Wednesday, 23.03.2011

Socrates, 469 BC–399 BC, was a classical Greek Athenian philosopher. Credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, he is an enigmatic figure known chiefly through the accounts of later classical writers, especially the writings of his students Plato and Xenophon, and the plays of his contemporary Aristophanes. Many would claim that Plato's dialogues are the most comprehensive accounts of Socrates to survive from antiquity.

Philosophy

Greed is Good.

 

Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures, the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge, has marked the upward surge of mankind and greed, you mark my words, will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the U.S.A.

Click here to watch speech.

Philosophy

Greed is Good
Posted
Monday, 21.02.2011


Gordon Gekko is the main antagonist of the 1987 film Wall Street and the antihero of the 2010 film Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, both by director Oliver Stone. Gekko, a fictional character, was portrayed by actor Michael Douglas, whose performance in the first film won him an Oscar for Best Actor.

More on Wikipedia.
Watch the speech here.

Hollywood hates Capitalism?

 

Oliver Stone's uber-villain Gordon Gekko is back in the new film Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, which features greedy capitalists behaving badly. It might remind you of Avatar, Mission Impossible 2 or roughly a zillion other films in which capitalists destroy the environment, concoct killer viruses, harvest organs, and cover up murder in order to feed their lust of profit. Even when capitalism isn't the primary target, the representatives of commerce are often flat-out repulsive (think Jabba the Hutt).

Watch what Reason.tv has to say here.

The Big Interview:
Bill Gates

 

In an exclusive interview with the Wall Street Journal, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates discusses the challenges of philanthropy in an economic recession and how his tenure at Microsoft prepared him for his new job running the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Watch it here.

Philosophy

The Big Interview: Bill Gates
Posted
Monday, 07.02.2011

In an exclusive interview with the Wall Street Journal, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates discusses the challenges of philanthropy in an economic recession and how his tenure at Microsoft prepared him for his new job running the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Watch it here.

Money is the frozen form of energy – productive energy.

 

My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute.

 

The Philosophy of Ayn Rand.

Philosophy

You can’t move forward if you are always looking back.

 

Michael Cina, Creative Director

Philosophy

Quote: Michael Cina
Posted
Thursday, 27.01.2011

Michael Cina is an internationally recognized Creative Director who is currently leading a multi-disciplinary design studio, Cina Associates. Michael is known globally for originating YouWorkForThem, a graphic design boutique, and its' sister company, WeWorkForThem, an award-winning design studio. His design portfolio includes many prominent Fortune 500 companies including Apple, American Express, ESPN, Pepsi, Coke, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, Mazda, and Victoria's Secret. Cina's work is consistently featured in numerous publications and he has spoken at many global design conferences about his unique vision for design.

Michael's design expertise is sought after because he has successfully tested, innovated, and mastered unconventional approaches to the discipline, giving his work a fresh and unique flair. Over his career, he has applied and synthesized typography, branding, illustration, motion, web, music, photography, art and typefaces to produce an integrated approach to his design. He is passionate about his work and constantly elevates his work to new levels for his clients. That is why he has been named one of the leading designers today.

Read complete questionnaire here.

Philosophy

A Well-Earned Capitalist Christmas
by Richard M. Salsman

 

The evolution of the Christmas tradition has not been from an initially religious, ascetic vigil into a secular, commercial celebration, as many believe, but the reverse. What began as a secular celebration of the return of the life-giving sun so prized by productive, earth-loving pagans in antiquity was essentially hijacked, later on, by monkish kill-joys dying to escape into a fantasized afterlife and eager to make secular, life-loving men feel small, sinful and guilty. Slowly since the late 1800s, thanks to capitalism, its original meaning and spirit has been partially reclaimed. Christians annoyed by this worthy reclamation are perfectly free of course to practice with integrity what they believe to be the true meaning of Christmas – by marking the actual birth of Jesus in September, in somber churches and a properly monkish manner. For capitalists, in contrast, ’tis the season to be jolly and to herald the winter solstice, but also to be proud of their riches as they share them guiltlessly with loved ones.

Philosophy

A Well-Earned Capitalist Christmas
Posted
Friday, 24.12.2010

The evolution of the Christmas tradition has not been from an initially religious, ascetic vigil into a secular, commercial celebration, as many believe, but the reverse. What began as a secular celebration of the return of the life-giving sun so prized by productive, earth-loving pagans in antiquity was essentially hijacked, later on, by monkish kill-joys dying to escape into a fantasized afterlife and eager to make secular, life-loving men feel small, sinful and guilty. Slowly since the late 1800s, thanks to capitalism, its original meaning and spirit has been partially reclaimed. Christians annoyed by this worthy reclamation are perfectly free of course to practice with integrity what they believe to be the true meaning of Christmas – by marking the actual birth of Jesus in September, in somber churches and a properly monkish manner. For capitalists, in contrast, ’tis the season to be jolly and to herald the winter solstice, but also to be proud of their riches as they share them guiltlessly with loved ones.

Excerpt courtesy of Forbes.
Read full article on Forbes.

Philosophy

A Return to Economist Friedrich Hayek

 

Friedrich Hayek detested policy intervention of any kind. Keynes, Friedman, and Hayek were leading lights of the three most influential schools of economic thought of the last century. Hayek was associated with the Austrian school, ascendant in the 19th and early 20th centuries, which argued that the private sector should be left free to carry out the task of any readjustment in a downturn.

Read article on Newsweek.

Philosophy

A Return to Economist Friedrich Hayek
Posted
Thursday, 02.12.2010

Friedrich August Hayek CH (8 May 1899 – 23 March 1992), born Friedrich August von Hayek, was an Austrian-born economist and philosopher best known for his defense of classical liberalism and free-market capitalism against socialist collectivist thought. 

Who is Friedrich Hayek? Find out more on Wikipedia.

Socialism only works in two places: heaven where they don’t need it and hell where they already have it.

 

Ronald Reagan

Philosophy

Quote: Ronald Reagan
Posted
Friday, 26.11.2010

Ronald Wilson Reagan (February 6, 1911 – June 5, 2004) was the 40th President of the United States (1981–1989) and the 33rd Governor of California (1967–1975).

 

More on Ronald Regan on Wikipedia.

Philosophy

Not yours to give.

 

Every congressman who thinks it's his job to redistribute other people's money should read this classic.

Qompendium thanks the Foundation for Economic Education for this great essay.

Read entire essay here or on our site.

Philosophy

Not yours to give.
Posted
Wednesday, 10.11.2010

Every congressman who thinks it's his job to redistribute other people's money should read this classic.

Qompendium thanks the Foundation for Economic Education for this great essay.

Read entire essay here or on our site.

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