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dream_weaver

Dream_Weaver's Allusions

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The Creators

I looked out at the starry sky; my thoughts gave way to awe.

I reminisced about my day and some wonders I had saw.

A drive nearby a building site where skilled men with tools toil,

A structure began to take its shape and rise above the soil.

In a quarry by those who plied their trade, cleaved granite along its rift,

A foundation worth every penny paid, once set, it would not drift.

The wood from trees was hewn then cut, some lumber thus was made,

It was sorted out in several piles, according to each, their grade.

From a mine deep ‘neath the ground, the ore brought up by rails,

A smelter’s furnace burning hot would help to make the nails.

He retraced in his mind what had guided his hands,

As the architect studied his blueprints and plans.

I looked out at the starry sky; my thoughts gave way to awe.

I reminisced about my day and some wonders I had saw.

The structure began to take its shape and rise above the ground,

Creation based on reasoning, helps to keep the process sound.

Gregory S. Lewis

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Words

The dictionary’s full of them on each and every page,

They’re listed alphabetically each in its own cage.

The definition sometimes gives some insight to a referent,

While other explanations tend to homage blatant deferent.

A newspaper has journalists who craft their lines to fit

between the narrow columns into which it all must sit.

The wordsmith picks so carefully the terms and formulation,

much more concerned with how it’s perceived within the publication.

An author pens a book to read or get a point across,

sometimes missing how the form might render it pathos.

Poets seem a different breed engrossed in metaphor,

rhyme and prose with metered sway and sometimes anaphor.

People use them every day just to communicate,

listening is how to hear precisely what they state.

To understand just what they mean and to what they referred

Study how they come to be and grasp just how they’re formed.

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If I Could Put Time In A Poem.

The pendulum swung to and fro within the etched glass case,

to numbers hands were pointed sure affront its ornate face.

Motion built into the piece through gears and springs Relates,

with skillful understanding that the clockmaker collates.

The sun announces each morning enlightening east horizon,

ensconcing clouds can make it seem as if it were bedizen.

When nightfall brings its splendor forth for those who wish to gaze,

Cycles of the moon from night to night reveal its phase.

Seasons follow one another successions Regularized,

Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall, quite Temporalized.

Days sequentially keep the pace a new moon would appear,

Months served the same purpose for the passage of a Year.

Historians study for the Future many eras Past,

and if analyzed properly it may prevent aghast.

Finding information when the records are obscure,

requires extra research when one wants to be for sure.

.

As the Disc began to rise it touched both sides to earth,

some water thus was set aside determined by its Girth.

More water through a hole was let until the dawn returned,

then measured very carefully by those who were concerned.

Seven hundred twenty parts were one full trip Ole Sol,

from that an hour was set to be just thirty of the Whole.

The distance walked in that short span they called a parasang

thus motion measured motion pictured here with rhyming slang.

Advances in the Sciences soon required more precision,

seconds split from minutes got another sub-division.

The study of the atom did reveal an Oscillation,

and this gave Chronology a different Alteration.

Many things the universe has always on the move,

with varying velocities and other stuff to prove.

Complexity of measurement, standards of selection,

beyond a doubt the unit must avail to detection.

Movement presumes that which moves, in short causality.

This we grasp from observations of reality.

Duration too, we can apply this form of quantity,

exempted though’s a special case that’s called eternity.

When an axiomatic concept’s formed it takes a conscious act.

What’s retained metaphysically’s a fundamental fact.

One genus of a magnitude remains to be omitted,

irrespective of the While awareness was committed.

Gregory S. Lewis

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Word Casserole

“Words transform concepts into (mental) entities; definitions provide them with identity.”

“The process of forming a concept is not complete until its constituent units have been integrated into a single mental unit by means of a specific word.”

“an integration, i.e., a blending of the units into a single, new mental entity which is used thereafter as a single unit of thought.”

“A unit is an existent regarded as a separate member of a group of two or more similar members.”

from Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology

Forming a word is kind of like baking a cake.

The process of making or forming a cake first involves mixing or blending the ingredients together into a batter.

The process of forming a concept first involves the blending of the units together into a single, new mental entity.

In the case of a cake, the ingredients or units are flour, sugar, milk, butter, etc., which are mixed together into a single, new entity.

In the case of forming a concept “tree” the units are an oak tree, a maple tree, a pine tree, etc. which the similarity between them, given perceptually are abstracted into the single, new mental entity.

The process of making the cake is not complete until it has been baked.

The process of forming the concept is not complete until it has been assigned a word.

While the analogy is not exact, it can provide some other analogies that can be drawn from it.

The cake, once baked, cannot be separated into the individual ingredients with a fork. To analyze the constituent units which make the cake up requires a different process.

The word, once formed, is a single unit. To analyze the constituent units which make it up requires a process.

The cake, once baked, can be used without knowing how it was made.

The word can also be used without knowing how it was made, much like a floating abstraction.

If you do not know how to bake a cake, you may not do it properly.

If you do not know how to form a concept, you may not do it properly.

If you put the wrong ingredients together and/or cook it incorrectly, the results will be terrible.

An invalid concept is one that the constituent units have been either misintegrated or disintegrated together, usually an attempt to integrate a contradiction.

It is much easier to learn how to bake a cake.

Gregory S. Lewis

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An Analogical Validation of A is A

As children, before we formulated our first words, we were surrounded by sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and feels. Most of us had parents, and other people around us and occasionally we found ourselves alone.

There have been experiments done that support that self-movement and interaction with our environment is essential to the brain integrating the various data from our senses into percepts. Moving around, wordlessly, we might reach out and grab a chair, our brain integrating the solid feel from our hand with the visual appearance of the leg we grasped along with the sound emitted, should we have moved it on the floor.

This experience is different from the one we found ourselves in the kitchen sink, where the sensation of water surrounded us. Touching the water was different from the memory of touching the chair leg. The sounds of splashing were nothing like the scraping of wood across the wooden floor.

When we encountered Fido for the first time, and reached out to touch him, the texture of the fur felt nothing like the water. While the skin beneath the fur was solid like the chair, but it yielded somewhat to the touch. Unlike the chair, Fido moved around while being watched, as did the people.

Having the opportunity to visit other places, there were plenty of new objects to observe. Seeing a new chair, reaching out to touch it, it was solid, like the one from before. When it moved, it squeaked on the linoleum floor. The other people in the room were making sounds. Hearing the sound “chair” sparked a recollection of a memory of hearing that sound back home by the other chair that looked similar.

At one point, the child recognizes that he can control the sounds he makes, much like he automated the ability to move his limbs, and move about his environment. Soon he discovered that he could make sounds similar to the ones he heard from the people around him. Integrating the past memories of the different sights, sounds, textures, taste and aromas, he began to identify the objects in the immediate awareness from around him. With much interaction with those around him, he learned to associate “chair” with the chairs, “water” with water, “Fido” with Fido, and “shoe” with shoes. The fundamental method of associating the auditory symbol (to become a visual symbol with writing) with the percepts had begun.

One day, he had some visitors in his home. He was busy exploring, when he discovered a pair of shoes. “Grandma?” he inquired. Grandma was not to be found. He put the shoes on his feet and wandered about the house looking for grandma. He remembered having seen “those” shoes before. They belonged to grandma. If grandma’s shoes were here, then grandma should be here as well.

Frustrated, and confused, he searched the entire house. He knew for sure that the shoes belonged to grandma. After some time, it was explained to him that the shoes belonged to the one of the visitors. It turned out that the shoes he found happened to be the same brand, color, style and size shoe as his grandma wore. He discovered that the conclusion held in his mind was wrong. He had thought the shoes, which looked just like grandma’s shoes, were grandmas, when in fact; this particular pair of shoes was not grandmas.

One day, at the local store, he found himself in the shoe department. He saw more shoes than he could ever remember having seen in his whole life. They came in many styles, colors and sizes. Moving further down the aisle, he came across a section that resembled his grandmother’s shoes, but he wasn’t going to fall for that trick again. He knew now that there could be more than one pair of shoes that looked just like grandmas. If there were so many of them here, he realized, there could even be more of them out there.

Later he discovered that water, which quenches thirst, was comprised of hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen and oxygen, while they could not be seen, had properties they possessed that had been discovered back around the 1800’s. Every element, in fact, could be distinguished by the different properties they exhibited, which could be determined from a variety of methods depending on what you were trying to identify. In fact, every object he had encountered up until now could be recognized and identified by specific properties he had learned to associate in his mind with the objects he observed. Identification itself, as it turns out, was taking on the shape of being a methodological approach.

Chairs were chairs. Tables were tables. Water was water. Water could be broken down into hydrogen and oxygen, but it was no longer water at that point. Instead, the hydrogen was hydrogen, and the oxygen was oxygen. H2O was chemistry’s way of notation for water, another auditory, visual symbol that represented the same thing. Shoes were shoes, but sometimes the shoes you thought belonged to grandma, belonged to someone else. This was a contradiction that had been resolved earlier in life. Sure there were likely other contradictions discovered along the way, but every contradiction turned out to be an error held by the mind about one aspect or another of reality. Even a contradiction, as it turns out, is a contradiction.

Chairs, tables, water, shoes, hydrogen, oxygen, contradictions are all considered to be things of one nature or another. No matter what entity was considered, no matter what relationship was pondered, the simple fact always came back to the same point: that a thing, regardless of what the thing was, was in fact what the thing was. A thing is what it is. A is A. There is just no way, using reason, to get around it.

Gregory S. Lewis

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In pursuit of the Identification of Identity.

The essence of the law of identity is; that a thing is what it is.

In my backyard is nearly 60 tons of rock. Each rock is itself. Each rock has its own shape. Each rock has its own weight. Each rock has its own color. Each rock has its own location. Every property or characteristic that has been discovered about rocks, to date, each rock in my backyard has independently of the others.

An average lawn that had 320 blades of grass per square inch would have 46,080 blades of grass in a square foot.

Since the ‘average’ American lawn is 8,712 square feet, there would be approximately 401,448,960 blades of grass in the ‘average’ sized American lawn.

Each blade of grass is itself. Each blade of grass has its own shape, length, width, thickness, color, location, etc. Every property or characteristic that has been discovered about grass, to date, each blade of grass in my yard has independently of the others.

The same conclusion can be drawn of trees, birds, apples, dishes, silverware, glasses, and of each and every other entity that exists.

A word is an auditory, visual symbol. A symbol is something that stands for or suggests something else by reason of relationship, association, convention, or accidental resemblance. In the case of a word, it is a symbol for a concept.

Each word is itself. Each word has its own letters, definition, etc. Every other property or characteristic that has been discovered about words, to day, each word has independently of the others. The word, “word” has been used six times in this paragraph. Each of the six instances has its own unique instance of the letters that comprise it, its own unique location within the paragraph, and every other property, discovered and undiscovered.

Each and every concept has its own properties, known and unknown.

The concept rock allows me to refer to each one of the hundreds of rocks in my backyard individually. I could point to indicate a specific rock to mean the specific rock I pointed to. When I indicate the rock that serves as a step off the back porch, it has its own unique shape, weight, color and location. When I refer to the word “rock”, which appears seven times in the first paragraph, each one is its own unique instance with it’s specific properties. When I refer to the “concept of rock” it has its own unique properties. The rock which serves as a step off my back porch, is an instance of one of the percepts I used to “fortify” my concept of rock,

As a symbol, I can use the word rock to identify a new percept of a rock and integrate it in with my current concept of rock. As such, rock refers to every rock I’ve ever encountered, every rock that has ever been, and every rock that is, or will be.

To state: a thing is what it is, integrates each rock is itself, each blade of grass is itself, each word is itself, each concept is itself, etc., into a single propositional principle: A is A There is just no way, using reason, to get around it.

Gregory S. Lewis

Edited by dream_weaver

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The Parametrics of Objectivism

I have been fortunate to procured a living as a draftsman. During my tenure, the mechanics of the position have gone from mastery of compasses, straightedges, triangles, protractors and calculators to a mastery of computer programs that use unseen algorithms to produce a more efficacious means of transmitting the knowledge created.

The early computer programs included attempts to provide the user with visual “instruments” to be moved about the screen. Electronic triangles, protractors and dividers soon gave way to a language-based interface. Lines, circles, arcs, ellipses, and bezier curves where summoned by command, located and implemented in the program.

Changes were still time consuming and tedious. If you moved a line, and you desired other lines to maintain a predetermined relationship, you moved the other lines as well.

Recently, computer programs began to make use of a new kernel within the hardware identified as parametric. The predetermined relationships you wanted to be maintained before could now be established more directly via the interface. If you moved a line, the lines established relative to the moved line, also moved. If you moved a threaded hole in an embossment, all the geometry associated would relocate as a group.

This functionality greatly enhanced the ability to manipulate geometry more quickly, but soon revealed another contributing factor. Moving an embossment that had a fillet attached to it, if the fillet encountered a condition that was not geometrically possible, it would fail. An intersection between two lines would fail if later they were made parallel.

The order of the features yielded similar situations. Adding a radius to an edge of a square cube produced a surface that is known as a quarter of a cylinder. If you then add a draft angle, the produced surface could be described as a quarter of a cone. If you wanted the surface to be cylindrical in nature, you had to execute the draft angle first, and then implement the radius.

By now, I am hoping that you are wondering what on earth has this to do with Objectivism.

Most people have a little familiarity with ideas. Deep down, we all want to believe that we are right, that the ideas we have are correct. If we compliment an outfit selection, the person being complimented is flattered. Their choice at the store was right. If we agree that there are problems in the world, again the feeling about being correct in their assessment is confirmed.

An acquaintance of is nearly finished Lockitch’s presentation on Intelligent Design: Creationism in Camouflage. He was having an issue with the file. It had stopped playing after 57 minutes. I told him the entire presentation was just over 64 minutes. He replied that there were still 7 more minutes of fun. When I suggested he was enjoying the presentation he replied: “Not bad. Nothing new, but an interesting listen.”

I mentioned that I thought that was Lockitch’s point. It’s the same old song and dance, once you recognize the tune.

He was upset over the use of the term “creationist”. He wondered if they were biblical followers, or just anyone who thinks there is a God? I had to ask if it mattered.

He asked if I thought he followed the Bible. I replied with a question: “Why would whether I think you follow the Bible or not make whether the distinction of Creationist is exclusive to Bible followers, or open to anyone who thinks there is a God, matter?”

He said, “No, it matters to me because, apparently, I'm lumped, incorrectly, into that category. It only doesn't matter to those that, apparently, do not understand.”

I pressed on, “You have been lumped, incorrectly, into a category, by whom?”

“Those that consider my proposal of RM to be incorrect.” (RM is an acronym for Rule Maker – that which set, established or implemented the rules for existence.)

I had to suggest that he chose the category of a "creationist". After all, it is his proposal. He chose it.

When I asked him how does I.D. differ from Creationism on the issue of existence, especially with regard to the primacy of existence? He responded,“I don't believe it does.”

So why wouldn't it be the creationist's category?

In Objectivism, we recognize how ideas are inter-related. When confronted with a contradiction that I have difficulty putting my finger on, it is often accompanied with a feeling of frustration. It is like having the fillet fail when trying to move the threaded embossment. I have to identify what caused the fillet to fail and implement corrective action.

He summed up our discussions pretty well.

“I thought that is, pretty much, one of our main opposing arguments. In effect, I say the universe required at a "starter" to set rules in place, for existence to exist with natural laws - and (from our countless arguments) you are arguing (somewhat successfully) that an existence cannot follow a consciousness and therefore must exist on it's own accord.”

Earlier I had point out “Does it matter what you "label" it? You view existence as "caused". You say you cannot imagine an existent that is not "caused", but you posit an existent ("RM") that is exempt from the blue colored proposition. To me, that is a contradiction. I ultimately reject it on that basis. What other factor need be considered?”

Until an individual understands the ideas of Objectivism, they cannot accept them. We cannot “understand” for them. But we can help facilitate that understanding if and when they are ready.

Borrowing from Miss Rand, I'll repeat what I started this year off with: "I will list these essentials for your future reference. But do not attempt the shortcut of accepting them on faith (or as semi-grasped approximations and floating abstractions). That would be a fundamental contradiction and it would not work."

Acquaintance: What a great rule to ensure the sales of many a book.

Clever is not a good enough word for her.

She was a master saleswoman; there is no doubt in my mind of that.

She knew her product better than anyone else that tried to peddle their second-rate merchandise beside her.

I'll admit, it took a lot of effort on my behalf to grasp the material. Trust me, I grasp it much better than I present it.

Acquaintance: You have no argument from me on her abilities - she certainly seemed like an extraordinary woman.

Gregory S. Lewis

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'splain it to me.

Understanding's nature eludes those who lay claim to desiring it, leaving barren the substance which should have filled their otherwise hollow words.

The want of explanation to serve as proxy, desire to fill the void left vacant by the machinery of comprehension left idle in the field of abundance.

"Et tu, Brute" the claim they lay. "The answers are not what you say." They have a mind but have not grasped just how it operates. All the floating abstractions keep on gumming up the works.

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Objectivism: The Best “After-Market” Owner’s Manual for the Mind.

You are the owner of one of the most complex piece of equipment discovered. How you choose to utilize this equipment determines everything that you can imagine.

An owner’s manual will not determine this for you. As an owner, you have to discover this for yourself. How to discover this is outlined in great detail within this “after-market” owner’s manual. Please note, that the great detail outlined in this “after-market” owner’s manual will not discover it for you. You will have to discover this too, for yourself.

Objectivism has started the greatest conversation ever, a conversation that has set the course for the future of human history, a conversation focused not on how to cope with suffering, rather how best to achieve a state of happiness.

Objectivism, while it contains many answers within, is not the answer; it is a guide that can assist you in discovering the answers you may seek. You still have to discover, not only the answers, you will also need to discover the questions you must ask in order to discover those answers. Again, the best “after-market” owner’s manual can assist you in understanding this too. Ultimately though, you still have to discover how to understand this for yourself.

Gregory S. Lewis

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“then who is God?”

The light dimmed in the room where I sat composing a response at the computer to a conversation about entities.

“Brown-out” I thought, glancing up at the light and back to the unfinished response on the monitor. I arose and walked out into the kitchen. The digital clocks on the stove and microwave were out. I walked back into the room where the computer was. The computer and light were both dark.

I walked back out to the dining room and retrieved my copy of Free Market Revolution and headed out the door to drive up to the local Big Boy restaurant. As I approached the first traffic signal and came to a stop behind the vehicle stopped ahead of me. Looking up at the light, it too was darkened, powerless to assist the normal flow of traffic through the intersection.

I could see the traffic lights ahead where functioning and when the semi tractor with its trailer proceeded to move forward, I removed from the brake my foot, and applied pressure to the accelerator pedal with it.

Arriving at the entrance of Big Boy’s parking lot, I observed a man and woman walking across the pavement. I selected a parking spot that was located directly in line from the front doors and moved the gear selector to the park position, turned the key to the off position and removed it from the ignition switch. After exiting the vehicle, I closed the door and pressed my thumb on the button with the closed padlock image drawn in white ink on the black key fob twice as I began to walk across the lane that separated me from the building. The click of the locks engaging followed by the beep of the horn confirmed that the fob battery still had some charge to it.

“Excuse me, sir.” I heard. I looked in the direction from where the man’s voice had come. His face and posture struck me with sense of years of despair, frustration and resignation. He could not have been much older than I.

“Yes?” I replied.

“We’re trying to get to Flint.” gesturing with his lower arms in the direction of the woman accompanying him.

I pointed in the direction Flint lay relative to our location as he continued, “We know where it is. We were headed there when the radiator hose on our car gave out on the expressway.”

“Ok?” I replied.

“We found out that there is a commuter bus that leaves from Great Lakes Crossing to Flint.” he continued.

I pointed toward the mall he mentioned.

“Yes. We know where the mall is, and we are willing to walk over there, but the fare to get there is $8.” He paused briefly. “Can you help?”

I shook my head saying, “No, thank-you.” and proceeded once again toward my destination.

I reflected on the exchange after placing my order.

They tried to sell me their story for $8. If they believed their story worth $8, why not sell it directly to the provider of the service they desired, the bus driver? Of course they know the bus driver, bound by the work agreement existing between the driver and the State of Michigan, would make the sales pitch more challenging.

I looked out the window I was seated at and read “Existence is Identity, Consciousness is Identification” affixed in silver-gray lettering to the rear window of the cap.

I remembered discovering “then who is God?” pushed into the dirt that had collected on the surface of the glass by an anonymous someone’s finger 39 days ago. “Some creation reports are greatly exaggerated.” I thought.

Gregory S. Lewis

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If you want to understand reason, understand concepts. If you want to study reason, study concepts. Concepts are where we store reason. – Harry Binswanger

To understand man, or any other human concern, one must understand concepts. One must discover what they are, how they are formed, and how they are used, and often misused, in the quest for knowledge. – Leonard Peikoff

Arbitrary

The arbitrary, a will to judge, not always decreed law

He who hears and decides based on what his mind’s eye saw.

In cases where the law’s preset, and testimony’s clear

Just verdict rendered per the facts shows truth has naught to fear.

Arbitration used today outside the state run courts,

Insist both parties do agree to bide by its reports.

Integrity and honesty earn both respect and trust

The arbiter who knows these things, consider them a must.

Over time the arbitrary, tradition, robes once worn,

Despotic stains, capricious care, whole cloths once, now are torn.

Gradually descending, giving up its former meaning,

About a century later was in thought much more demeaning.

It’s chequered past; its history, is carefully enshrined

In language as we use it, comes inexorably entwined.

What things that we’re confronted with should we simply dismiss?

Or examine with a careful eye, reviewed somewhat coulisse?

How to discern the evidence is not that widely taught,

Though proof’s onus is usually clear on who ought to be fraught.

This method must be surely learned before it can be taught,

The mind must first absorb what ultimately must be wrought.

Gregory S. Lewis

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Psychobabble

 

Psychobabble, one two three,

Words exchanged ‘twixt you and me.

The mind you study is your own,

Inference thus, some say’s a koan.

 

Cadavers on the gurneys lie,

Brains exposed to naked eyes.

MRI’s and EEG’s

Just show a blip when patients sneeze.

 

The words we use are sensual symbols,

Sight, sound and touch - they act as gimbals.

To infer others are aware,

In-deed’s a delicate affair.

 

Let’s toss the words into a salad

No want for dressing, keep it pallid.

Brush inconvenient facts aside,

Groom psychobabble as a bride.

 

Gregory S. Lewis

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Orchestration

Music intermingles sounds and rhythms from within,

This combination brings about elation or chagrin.

An integrated melody can lift a distraught soul.

An incongruous cacophony can really take its toll.

 

The major and the minor keys often frame the mood,

And fluxion ‘twixt the two of them is occasionally pursued.

The beat, you see, while temporal, establishes a cycle,

Thus the role that cadence plays, helps meter a recital.

 

Melody and harmony are often found together,

Flocking with each other as if made from same feather.

Dissonance is oft’ compared with racket or a din,

The Prince of Darkness sure can play a mean ole violin.

 

Thirds, fourths, fifths and sevenths – even in a capella,

Place in musicology, soundly with their own umbrella.

Resultant chords mixed from these spans result as intonations,

Structured well within a song can lead to modulations.

 

Notation’s sometimes left aside in favor of impromptu,

Extemporaneous adlib is sure to rise anew.

Composed of several phrases pitched, as operatic lief,

Orchestrated progressions reprise this key motif.

 

Gregory S. Lewis

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Poetic License

 

Rhyme and verse, some metered prose, all carefully arranged,

Words selected, oft’ appraised, for meanings interchanged.

A driving thought, or vague idea, thus served up as a theme,

Helps organize or focus on a goal reigning supreme.

 

Subplots in the narrative must really coexist,

A way as such, support it lends, for interest to persist.

Interspersed, spread throughout, keeping with the topic,

Open to examination, even microscopic.

 

Reaching out to grasp a point that might be so obscure,

May serve as fuel to engineer a new entrepreneur.

Philosophy doeth under grid; its framework must transmit,

Yet poetry can acquiesce, with artistic permit.

 

Gregory S. Lewis

 

Dante, DonAthos, softwareNerd, Devil's Advocate, and Plasmatic, thank-you for your appreciative acknowledgements.

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Selective Recreation

 

The painter with his bush in hand, stretched canvas set on easel,

Upon his palette, pigments lie, while pondering his resile.

The vision held from deep within, guiding his selections,

Took shape before him with each stroke, based on these introspections.

 

With each color he did blend ‘til it met expectation,

Placing on the once blank slate with others t’ward summation.

From each expression of his brush, from mind to painting went,

Transferring with self-made soul until both were content.

 

Spots of paint dotted the floor, where the tripod stands,

Irrelevant to the graphic scene, where artist sets demands.

Some streaks of paint were in his hair, through which his fingers drove,

In an absent-minded gesture, done while studying this trove.

 

Behind him, on the table laid an uncompleted meal,

Interrupted by a thought, most urgent to reveal.

The drapes were drawn, illumined by the lighting in the room,

Creating an environment, now serving as a womb.

 

With each and every aspect of the portrait to detail,

Doeth coalesce from start to end, becoming holy grail.

As you ruminate the substance of a piece of art,

At its core, its essence is disclosed, the artist’s heart.

 

Gregory S. Lewis

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Inspired by David Harriman’s presentation: “The Inductive Way to Understand the Sky

 

A Sonnet To The Movement Of The Heavens.

 

O’er east horizon riseth Sun, ‘tis seen as clear as day,

The shadows shorten toward high noon, then stretch back as sets eve.

While dropping down past west skyline ‘till casting final ray,

Twelve hours of light on equator ‘til ol’ sol doth take leave.

The Moon, in contrast, it doth wax and also doth it wane,

Some times it is not seen at all, while others, in full gleam.

The phases of this orb of night, when unknown, seem arcane,

Lunation points throughout the year help to reveal a theme.

Both Lunar and Solar Eclipse; quite something to perceive,

Once aberrations of the sky, to see, we now expect. 

It’s through Synodic Periods, predictions we achieve,

celestial events observed o’er time interconnect.

The Sun and Moon both demonstrate, an ethereal dance,

providing much more over time than discerned at first glance.

 

In Winter, crops are scarce, this sets Orion on the chase,

the Spring sets forth the waters into Big Dipper’s domain.

As Summer blooms across the land, the Swan appears with grace.

and Fall, majestic colors frame Cassiopeia’s reign.

Orion’s shoulder’s Betelgeuse, while Rigel serves as foot.

Big Dipper’s second magnitude, its shape’s easily shown.

Swan’s tail’s, Deneb, in Arabic, is simply how it’s put.

The Queen’s distinctive W is also quite well known.

Four guideposts move across the sky as the seasons rotate,

containing three bright luminary markers in their midst.

These constellations subdivide and showcase what to locate,

and isolate three stars by name in short triadic list.

Night after night the stars do shift by almost one degree,

as thus arranged, may serve to some, an astronomic key.

 

Next, to meet the wanderers, considered quite nomadic,

for Saturn, Jupiter and  Mars, have similar tableau,

To early watchers of the sky, they were enigmatic.

Distinctive objects to the eye, e’er roamed with steady glow.

At dusk and dawn are often seen the morning/ev’ning star,

as Venus, sometimes Mercury, have both been know as these.

In rather novel way they are essentially on par,

both Orbits bound interior, do grant them this prestige.

Bodies five, all heavenly, are seen by eye unaided,

Nicolaus Copernicus suggested hel’ocentric,

Tycho Brahe’s notes left Johannes Kepler quite persuaded,

unique movements as produced were each one’s own elliptic,

When Earth was found to be a planet, knowledge sprung anew,

changing ways that things were pondered; a world altering view.

 

The Hunter’s Great Dog follows him just off to the southeast,

his collar sports the brightest shining star called Sirius.

The Twins with Pollux at their head, play off to the northeast,

Procyon, in betwixt the two, now less mysterious.

The Bull, Taurus, sets off afield of Twins, just to their west,

Aldebaran, Bull’s bloodshot eye, gaze south of Ecliptic.

Auriga’s known as Charioteer, north of Hunter’s chest,

Capella, its most northern point, helps make this less cryptic.

Featured in this Winter cluster, seven constellations,

where six bright lights within them make the Winter Hexagon.

These verbal star maps, so arrayed, form these presentations,

as bounded here together in a sort of lexicon.

The Solstice in north hemisphere, comprises longest night,

to amateur astronomers, could serve as a delight.

 

The two stars in Big Dipper’s bowl by handle point the way,

to Regulus, the Lion’s heart, where on Ecliptic, beats.

When lining up bowls outer two, Polaris doth, still, stay,

with North Star, sailors guide their ships, when wind fills up their sheets.

East along Ecliptic, Spica marks where sits the Maiden,

Virgo must have feinted when she heard ol’ Leo roar.

The Herdsman used Big Dipper as a plow, per Greek legend,

Arcturus, “Guardian of Bear”, the Dipper’s home of yore.

These four main Spring constellations, set somewhat in a square,

add here three stars of special note, and one used oft’ at sea.

The Sun sets the Ecliptic from which Regulus strays ne’er,

an unseen pathway through the sky, doth skirt this fine marquee.

On Equinox, this early Spring, to north doth move the Sun ,

while Regulus, in opposition, stays on the same run.

 

Cygnus, Swan, swims gracefully, o’er empyrean expanse,

follow line from tail through head, ‘till it meets the southern edge.

The Archer, Sagittarius, on bow, arrow advance,

‘tis Antares, Scorpion’s heart, that he intends to wedge.

Beside this line, Altair, known as the flying Eagle, soars,

to warn the Swan distracted by Lyre’s uplifting strain.

Playing music, universal, composed on ancient scores,

the coda: Vega will ascend to be North Star again.

What’s known as ‘Summer Triangle’, began some years ago,

described in text “conspicuous” in eighteen sixty six.

A triad of the brightest objects stand out by their glow,

from each apex and time of year, the new name simply sticks.

Summer Solstice coincides with the shortest northern night,

along with warmer weather, some stargazers find all right.

 

When Queen Cassiopeia entered into the great hall,

she so boasted of her beauty, she was considered vain.

Banished forthright to the sky by the gods she did appall,

five stars in all make up her throne, upon which she must deign.

The Arabic word for the phrase: mouth of the [southern] Fish,

as Ptolomy did translate years ago, as Fomalhaut.

Search low on southern skyline to visually plenish,

for this one does both rise and set with less time to be caught.

These fifteen stars, first magnitude, plus one used as a guide,

reoccurring through the years, as broke down, each per season.

With short sagas, used to convey, intended to provide,

an organized collection, to apprehend by reason.

Fall Equinox, south heads the Sun, the cycle to do o’er,    

pre-telescope astronomy, delivers this, and more.

 

Gregory S. Lewis

Edited by dream_weaver

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An Ode for Miss Ayn Rand

 

The world began for Miss Ayn Rand to win.
on Groundhog’s Day in Nineteen Hundred Five.
Saint Petersburg of Russia formed the bin,
where first of three, did find herself alive.

 

On paper, all through life, did thoughts get stored,
With samurai precision, offered ken,

Observations honed, keen, like edge of sword,
wielded with might, her power over pen.  

 

Throughout the ages, unsung heroes hid,
in plain sight to mankind’s un-grasped peril.
By opening the vast historic lid,
found in this trove a most fetching carol.

 

Along the path less trod this journey led,
where nature had placed universal key,
through everything did run a common thread,
for this was she decried as a banshee.

 

A moral compass she did calibrate,
the antidote to altruism’s bane,
with reasoning used to emancipate,
and egoism’s crown thus to attain.

 

The rights of man can guide him socially,
when used to limit edicts of the tribe,
the freest times produce abundantly,
the unknown ideal, to this, does ascribe.

 

As consummate artist she did aspire,
ascending in a rather novel way,
to set the hearts of men she touched on fire,
with an eternal flame that will hold sway.

 

A gravestone, where her corpse interred, depicts,
of Valhalla, New York, awareness - none.
On sixth of March, year Nineteen Eighty Six.
The world ended for Miss Ayn Rand had won.

 

Gregory S. Lewis

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A Brief Allusion About Copyrights
 

CUI-11. Patents And Copyrights

Originally in The Objectivist Newsletter, May 1964

 

Patents and copyrights are the legal implementation of the base of all property rights: a man's right to the product of his mind.

 

Both of these articles belong to Ayn Rand. In fact, they are the same article; verbatim. The first time it was printed was in May 1964, when it was sent to her subscribers of The Objectivist Newsletter. The second time, it was under a contract negotiated with a publisher as part of her book: Capitalism, The Unknown Ideal.

 

It was in this article she identified the notion of intellectual property as the subject of patents and copyrights. Ok, so she renamed the article from “Intellectual Ammunition Department” to “Patents And Copyrights”. As the owner, she was entitled to do so.

 

Starting with the identification of the fact that every type of productive work is a combination of mental and physical effort, thought and physical action translating thought into material form, where the ratio of these two aspects vary according to what is being done. Observing someone gather dead grasses, twigs and an assortment of larger branches and piling them up to build a fire is a technique that most children can perform with little parental intervention required. Copying an inspiring novel letter-by-letter, punctuation_mark-by-punctuation_mark, is a task most literate individuals can do.

 

For nearly two centuries, (starting with Plato around 400 B.C. till 1400 A.D.) this was the way literature was replicated. Until Johannes Gutenberg invented the movable type printing press, the physical labor of copying was a significant part of the object’s value – over and above the value created by the originator of the idea.

 

The development of the mimeograph machine, by Thomas Edison, and the later Xerox machine, by IBM, reduced the time and effort required to duplicate the printed page to a fraction to that of copying by hand. With the advent of computers and the connectivity provided by the Internet, anyone that can use a computer and has access to the web can copy just about anything. No longer is the physical labor of copying a significant source of the object’s value, especially in the realm of literature.

 

So wherein does the value lie? In the fourth paragraph, Miss Rand posits the crux of her discovery and puts it forth her formulation. While a scientific or philosophic discovery which identifies a law of nature, a principle or a fact of realty not previously known is not the exclusive property of the discoverer because he did not create it.

 

“Intellectual property” is a discovery Miss Rand made during her keen exploration of existence. As such, a philosophical (or scientific) discovery which identifies a law of nature, a principle or a fact of reality not previously know, cannot be the exclusive property of the discover because she did not create it. She can copyright the book in which she presents her discovery, and she can demand that her authorship of the discovery be acknowledged, that no other man appropriate or plagiarize the credit for it-but she cannot copyright theoretical knowledge.

 

By committing her understanding of  “Intellectual Property” onto paper, she can make this theoretical knowledge available to her readers. And she does so, by utilizing the trader principle. When two people agree to the terms of an exchange, it is to the mutual benefit of both parties to do so.

 

The United States has had copyright laws on the books nearly from its inception. While in her copyrighted work she cites the Great Britain’s Copyright Act of 1911 as the most rational, the article was made available under the protection of U.S. copyright law. When an individual purchases an item that has been copyrighted, they are agreeing to the terms of the exchange.

 

The Intellectual Property is the text of the work as put forth by the author. The theoretical knowledge contained therein is made available via the copyrighted work. It is the readers’ responsibility to discover the idea which the work embodies, should they so desire. Even so, nature does not guarantee the success of any human endeavor.

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Paper Route Newsflash

 

About 15 years ago, I was sitting on my glider on the front porch of the house I owned in a fairly densely populated community. A young girl who delivered the local newspaper was out collecting the monies owed to her from subscribers.

 

When she got to where I lived, she turned and walked up the sidewalk and stepped up onto the porch and engaged me with a rather strange question.

 

“So, when are you moving?”, she inquired.

 

“Well,” I hesitated, “I wasn’t planning on moving. Why do you ask?”

 

Looking into my eyes, she responded, “There are blacks moving into the neighborhood.”

 

I leaned forward and looked down the street to my left. Then, turning my head, I looked down the street to my right. Then I looked back at her, leaned forward a little further and indicated with a hand gesture for her to move in a little closer – which she did.

 

As she leaned forward, I quickly glanced up and down the street again, then put my hand up near my mouth as if to cover my words. In a lowered voice, I told her, “There are blacks living on this planet.”

 

We pulled back from each other. As I watched her, her eyes got real wide; as if a thought had struck her that went way past the dinnertime conversations she was probably accustomed to having.

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Changing the Culture

 

Stephen R. Covey wrote many years ago in his book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” a guiding principle he identified as: “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”  This is closely aligned in my mind with Dale Carnegie’s advice in “How to Win Friends and Influence People” where he penned his advice: “You can close more business in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get people interested in you.

 

Ayn Rand sought first to understand, then to be understood. Albeit, Mr. Covey’s context was to first understand people, then to be understood by them. An aspect of this can be seen in Mr. Carnegie’s advice, by being interested in other people, other people think you have their interests in mind. Miss Rand sought first to understand human nature, and then to pass on that understanding. Mr. Covey qualified his advice with listening so you really, deeply understand another human being. Rand qualified her advice by advocating an understanding of reasoning and reality.

 

All three of these individuals have insights about human nature. All three indicate positive values that might be achieved via judicious application of their respective principles.

 

Carnegie’s book originally listed twelve things his book would do for you. The audience he appealed to he envisioned as looking for new thoughts, visions and ambitions, friends, popularity, persuasiveness, influence and prestige, new clients or customers, increased earning power among others listed.

 

Covey’s list of potential benefits was more generalized. He offered advice for being effective in life, identifying character values and life goals, and setting prioritization. He also offered advice on interdependence; strategies for working with others.

 

Rand examined values, and identified what the criteria are for things to qualify as values, and why happiness is pursuant to their achievement. The tool she identified as the only one best suited for dealing with others was reason, with the only alternative for humanity to resort to being force.

 

Both Carnegie and Covey appeal to an implicit sense of selfishness, telling their readers what they should expect for themselves by reading their books. Rand, on the other hand, painstakingly leads her readers through the virtues of selfishness explicitly.

 

Carnegie and Covey offered suggestions on how to be more effective when dealing with others. Rand simply presented her ideas to others, relying on the soundness of her arguments to stand on their own merit. 

 

One of these suggestions was to: Begin with praise and honest appreciation. Rand advocates this principle: One must never fail to pronounce moral judgment.

 

Another suggestion was to call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly. Falling in line with the pronouncement of moral judgment, make it as clear and concise as possible.

 

Where it was advocated to give the other person a fine reputation to live up to, Rand pointed out that a man is a being of self-made soul.

 

In the spirit of the titles of both books, Carnegie points out: Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct. Rand addresses this in her pithy remark cited by Leonard Peikoff in his Epilogue: To save the world is the simplest thing in the world. All one has to do is think.

 

Carnegie’s last suggestion was to make the other person happy about doing what you suggest, Covey’s win-win solution, if you will. Here, Rand speaks though John Galt, pointing out that “Happiness is the state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of one’s own values.

 

Supplemental listening: http://traffic.libsyn.com/philosophyinaction/2013-11-10-Q1.mp3

Edited by dream_weaver

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A little ditty I wrote back on Dec. 11, 2008.

Barack, the magic puppet
Who pulls his strings?
Chicago style politics
May have gave him wings.

His dance of vast evasion
Keep delusions going strong
With the right appointment picks
Some canaries quell their song

Those leftist old world policies
Down that path again we're led
They have not worked out in the past
Isn't communism dead?

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