The Voyage of Captain Obvious

Grading is satanic

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The joy of research.

So here I am, after all these years of damn grad school. I've got an idea for a research project of sorts, and I've been working out the details--but nowadays I have this paranoid fear that any idea I get will just backfire in my face and not work out. It weirdly leaves me productive, but also filled with a morbid dread.

I just need to goddamn graduate, methinks.


  • At 30 March, 2006 17:16, Blogger Impatient Patient said…

    Hi- I found your reply on cosmic variance, so I came here. My comment that biology predates morals, essentially, is correct. We do what feels good. What rewards us by feeling good is what we continue doing. We are also extremely social creatures, so if killing each other harms the group, then we tend not to do those things. Have you ever watched those animal specials on PBS? Right before I wrote that comment, I saw a special on animal behaviour and how positive rewards engender bilogical responses of pleasure in rats. As well they had interspecies play- a dog and some chimps. Think of horses. They have no morality as such, but if a horse steps out of line, we can see that that horse is dismissed by the group and made to be alone until either it makes gestures that indicate submissiveness, or until the dominant horse lets the animal back into the fold.

    This is not to say that this is not wondrous. It is amazing. It is to say that our brains, which invented language and code for certain behaviours runs essentially the same as any other mammal. We just have better tools and organizing skills.

    I have found this explanation to HELP rather than HINDER me as I raise kids. In fact, Jane Goodall references how she learned to parent back to one of the chimp mothers she observed. I can honestly say that it is much easier to parent thinking that your kid is just doing what comes naturally, than it is to be a kid who is parented and all problems are blamed on lack of religious motivation- a spiritual excuse. Now, do I have kids who go to church- yep. Did I take them there- yep. Do I still worship- not so much. Once I figured out that churches were social constructs that concentrated power in a few in order to control many, I figured out that it was like any other political or social organization. For years I watched as SINS that were sending me to hell all of a sudden became not sins. Did I change, or did the church? We are talking dancing, music and dating. When I realized that most people in church were fearful of the world outside, I was horrified. Their ideal situation- which had never really existed- was being threatened by gays, unwed parents and other religions......So they volume was turned up and people freaked. And still are.

    I was not willing to go with the crowd. It was easier to drop out, step away, and observe from a distance than fight over gay marriage, the morality of poverty, or the stupididty of fighting with other people who seemed to worship the same God- unless they were fighting with you on the other two moral issues. Does that make sense?

    I do not hate religion, I just see it as useless and false. I miss it, I miss the social aspect, I thank those who were kind to me and mine, but in all honesty, I do not wish to believe in anything that is politics dressed up as moral authority. Look what is happening in the West because of this already.


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