Today’s blog, I want to start with talking about philosophy. It’s better to say that I will discussing around philosophy. Sometimes I like to read about philosophy. Morals and ethics was an annoying class for me to take in college. It challenged by behavior and beliefs. I love to see something new in life and I don’t ever want to have beliefs, I want all of them gone — and reading philosophy is a good practice for me. You know all of philosophy starts by asking very basic questions. It will lead to so much insight on society, family, religion and cosmic nature.

Philosophy is general and abstract. Lately I’ve found value in thinking this way. Everybody else wants to speak about specifics. That is why I feel very misunderstood. I am trying to talk to you about the general and abstract patterns of the human psyche. It matters less about the specific contents of things. What matter to me is how one though proceeds the next. It is easy to uncover unconscious patterns and phenomenon this way. It is the reason why I write the way I write.

I often switch from first person to third person. While writing I toggle between addressing ‘you’, addressing ‘myself’, and addressing ‘they’. I speak prosaically sometimes and in the next moment I am speaking so abstract like it is poetry. I am not trying to be consistent and I’m not trying to be formal. I am just writing and they message is conveyed between my words — please understand this. If you try to ‘understand’ my message, than you will miss it. You just have to be imaginative and read it. Read it like I am your friends. I am not anything else but your friend.

I’m not advancing an agenda. I’m not even a writer. I’m not a blogger. Anything like that is consequential — I am just writing from my heart. And I am wrong all the time! I told you, I am not trying to be consistent. If I try to be consistent with myself — it’s saying that I am not just going with it! I’m just going along pretty much!

Philosophy is prevalent in my mind today because of what happened. There is an old homeless man who hangs out at the coffee shop where I write — we talk often. His name is Hugo and I have not met a philosopher in real life until I met Hugo. You can say you are a philosopher if you teach at University. You may have read all the books and you say you’re a philosopher. I have met people like this, but they’re not philosophers like Hugo.

Hugo is a philosopher. He is bonefide crazy. I am defining ‘crazy’ here by society’s standards. People look crazy when they don’t adhere to typical thought and behavior, and so they become socially incompatible. Hugo is socially incompatible. You should see this man. He’s an elderly un-groomed man, wandering from here to there, speaking fanatically about anything philosophical — and believe me, his manner of speaking is not conventional. He’s friendly and polite but he raves on in a thick accent to anybody he can get to listen to him. Don’t let his appearance fool you, the man is extremely well versed in theology, scripture, philosophy and psychology. You might have already given Hugo an impression by how I’ve described him, but let me tell you this — Hugo is by far the most intelligent and authentic man I’ve met around lately.

I feel happy to talk to him. He’s fun to talk to because I always walk away having learned something new, ya know and I think about it.

There is not doubt that his path has sunk soo deep into the seat of his being that now he is socially incompatible — a homeless retired philosophy teacher from Central America who is not trying — he’s just living life. But he does have heavy opinions about certain institutions — and I don’t blame him! Something curious to me is the look in Hugo’s eyes. They are familiar and intense. His entire person actually strikes me like the doppelganger of somebody else who I know about.

Today I sat outside on the patio with Hugo. It is difficult to follow Hugo. He rants on and his speech reminds me of how my thoughts proceed each other. In fact — his fashion of speech follows a similar style of rhythm to my blogs.

You understand how we have to organize our thoughts into speech. It happens immediately, you don’t even know it happens, but it contributes to your personality! Before you say anything, it is proceeded by a train of thoughts. And if your thought trains were spoken exactly how they are thought, then it would sound very non-chronological and abstract.. Hugo delivers his message somewhat this way. I wont talk too much about it, but I’ll tell you what he shared with me today — which I’ve heard him talk about before also.

Hugo says that there are Four Pillars to Society. I may get it wrong. In fact — it will be likely, because his philosophy is somehow deeply encrypted. I am saying it now how I understand. I have put my spin on it actually. He gave me the pillars, so he must understand it — but his message has a long way to travel to come to my understanding and there are a lot of barriers in the way. His message had to be coded into words and given in a foreign tongue. I listened to it, and as much as I could, I received it. But by then, I doubt the message reached me unscathed from modification and bias. I’m just Erik and this is what I’m saying about what Hugo said.

There are four pillars to society. The first is religion. A lot was said about religion and Hugo is quite Marxist in his view — and actually, I agree with him. Religions behave like an opium to the people. Yes, religion is soothing the people in the society. It is soothing them well, then the human psyche conjures up gods, heaven and hell. But I am saying that religions have a tendency to condemn natural things. I am not condemning now, I am just saying what I see.

The philosopher Einstein said, “If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed.”

This is what traditional religions is doing. They’ve caught humanity in a great conspiracy. Traditional religions are mobs. They pass on their mob mentality to their children, and it goes on! Hugo and I agree about this!

The second pillar to society is science. I love the convergence between science and religion. Fools might think they are only saying different things. They are saying different things because we have it in our mind that they are perpendicular studies. That is a difference in conception, not in truth. So they do differentiate in that respect, but they’re also parallel. The findings of science are testament to the spirit of religions.

Religious spirit is in the essence of things. It is very subtle, so you must be subtle to know it! Science is very gross. It is seeing physical things. Physical things are manifest of religions things. Religion and science as so broad, and I know very little in comparison. But from what I have studied, I’ve seen that science and religions are parallel. And also I see the contradiction in terms. Then it makes religion and theology really fun to learn about. You see how people’s minds are, because religion does do something to the mind! So the society need science also. Scientists are spiritual. They are looking at the Creator’s creation! Scientists love it! Ask a scientist — they are in a love affair with science. I can see why. A few years ago, I started wondering about the whole universe. I read these books about Cosmology and Quantum Mechanics. My favorites were Carl Sagan, deGrasse Tyson, Michio Kaku, and Stephen Hawking. I was into that before I was in to Religions, but that was the start of the spiritual path. That is the value of Science in society.

You shouldn’t be surprised. I can’t give justice to philosophy. I’m just a guy who reads books and writes a lot — I don’t know a lot about philosophy. In respect to how philosophy adds something deeply valuable to human society, I agree with another blogger Dan Little.

“Another area where philosophy is relevant to society is normative social philosophy — the theory of justice, human well-being, or communitarianism/liberalism, for example. Here the philosopher brings some organized thinking about values, ethical theory, and the messy facts of human social arrangements into the discussion. Here again, it is fairly clear how rigorous philosophical thinking can illuminate these questions; philosophy can help our understanding of these issues to progress.”

You’re cool Dan Little! So here’s my question; Is philosophy something that can add clarity to our vision? We could all use a little clarity. A little clarity to look at the religions — some more clarity to look a the science!

The fourth IS culture and arts. I’m writing this now in my room, it’s all fresh to me as I think about it. I am writing this and your reading, but you don’t know that I’m also hearing this for the first time like you. As I see it, the real beauty of art is in the opportunity it provides you to be in the present moment. You have to be! Whether you are dancing, painting, singing, writing poetry or anything else creative — you are being present when it is happening. Artistic expression is born out of people’s presence. They need to be creative. Creativity is actually what some may say is being close to God. You are just going with the way of the universe and artwork it being created.

Shree Rajneesh spoke so beautifally in this respect about Van Gogh.

“Nobody purchased Vincent van Gogh’s paintings. During his whole life not a single painting was sold; but that didn’t matter, he enjoyed himself. If they sold, good; if they did not sell, good. The real prize was not in their being sold and appreciated, the real prize was in the painter’s creation of them. In that very creation he has attained his goal. In the moment of creation he becomes divine. You become God whenever you create.”

“Van Gogh, appreciated or not, lived a tremendously beautiful life in his inner world – very colorful. The real prize is not when a painting is sold and critics appreciate it all over the world – that is just a booby prize. The real prize is when the painter is creating it, when the painter is lost in his painting, when the dancer has dissolved into his dance, when the singer has forgotten who he is and the song throbs. There is the real prize, there is the real attainment.”

Artistic expression in society seems to be testament to their being people in society who are awake. They are living! This reminds me of my hometown, Salt Lake City. Their is such beauty in the culture of Salt Lake City. They are very artistic. The amount of local art is amazing, and you can see that the people are open and that they are expressing themselves. They are saying, “I’m here. I’m alive!” I love that aspect of Salt Lake City!

This is is my spin on Hugo’s four pillars of society. Religion, Science, Philosophy, and Art.

Let me tell you this.

Philosophy is like a game for me. Yes, I enjoy studying and thinking, but I am doing it by choice. I know I’m thinking about it, but my life is not my thinking. I’m actually just handing out next to my bed, smoking weed, listening to music, reading and writing. Philosophy is of no consequence for me. In fact — when I speak with my family members about philosophical things (they can do it well), I never disagree with them. We can talk about it until we uncover enough to find common ground. That happens most the time.

I see what you’re saying! Come tell me what you’re thinking, I’ll agree with you! It is just like philosophy. I’m just looking at things, seeing what they are for me, and talking about it. I’m just writing an Inquisitive Thesis.

Sat Nam and Love

Erik H.

Edit: The cover photo for this blog is not a picture of Hugo — although it is strikingly familiar. When I saw it I just thought, “Perfect.” Thank you Photo by Katie Moum on Unsplash.

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