Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Gymnasium: "Naked Training"

Gold’s Gym.

Synectics it was called, back in the 70’s—
brain storming;  group process. Philip
Phenix called it Noetics.  Edification:
building up a shared  point  of view—
an emergent revelation.

Hard to practice putting ideas in play
when the aim  &  purpose is to cover
ground in some  discipline driven by
measurable goals,assessable outcomes,
major, minor, and capstone experience.

Just on my hall: a Phenomenologist, 
Modern Colonialist,  Creative Non-
Fictionalist, Playwright Sociologist, 
Theologican.  Poet, Grammarian & 
Rhetorician, Hagiographist,  Coyote
Documentarian & Ornithologist, Mao 
Apologist… All that surface difference
&  each one: a critical thinker, & that’s 
just one floor in Jensen: 

In such an environment, IT  remains 
rigorous and principled: scrupulous 
disciplinary  security systems kick in. 
Right & Wrong,  Good & Evil. A  moral
matrix: rough beast like some Sphinx 
has me in thrall, Narcissus & Procrustes
as well as Epimenides not with standing: 
caught inside a mythological web,  
insensitive to its descriptive accuracy.  

Never the less, I confess my love to snipe
at other  Critical Thinkers and  engage in 
critical-thinking  duels, skirmishes, brew 
ha ha’s, yes-but’s, on-the-other-hands—
sandals and togas in the groves of  academe
& it don’t matter what the subject object
matter is or content-topics –the more 
trivial the  better;  seeing as profundity 
eclipses the process and it’s the Critical
Thinking Dueling going on that  counts, 

Getting better and even good at it. 
Need we argue?

Gymnasium: “naked training.”


  1. Free speech aborted at University. Words from Canada's best commentator. We must be able to compare creeds and their effects, have a Gold's Gymn and then judge. http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2014/04/12/rex-murphy-on-ayaan-hirsi-ali-universities-have-become-factories-for-reinforcing-opinion/

  2. "Damn it, a university exists to unsettle, to throw down established attitudes, to shine the searchlight of reason on all ideas. Universities are supposed to be bold, confident, courageous institutions, whose biggest duty to their students is to expand the range and depth of their ideas, not confirm their prejudices."

  3. Sam quoting Sam? An article of faith.

  4. My Alma Maters' mottoes are 1) Quaecumque vera--Whatsoever things be true. 2) Timor Domini sapientia initium--The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

    Both assume that there are things that are true and wise. Not to mention just, righteous and loving--"wise" probably means that in the appropriate mixture for the situation. A "prejudice" is not the same as first premises. (Though I have to admit that I don't know what I am talking about when saying "first premises"; I am imagining things like natural law, assuming some sort of transcendence beyond what can be seen... Reason's search light can't go everywhere. It seeks its own glory and is easily mutated to fit agendas... It can become quite stupid and "unwise".

  5. I was quoting from your article--not mysefl. And I agree about reasin: my exquisite lucid rationality occludes the darkness it would investigate--like lighting a candle in a cave to study dark..

  6. Sorry, I only read it once. It sounded like you with the damn it.

  7. Sorry, that didn't come out quite right either. This is the sentence about universities that had lodged itself with me: "Universities are losing their halo. They are now factories for reinforcing received opinions, what the market holds as right and true — so-called “progressive” ideas. They have a deep hostility to ideas and opinions that wander outside their small circle of acceptability. They choose which protests they endorse and which they deplore." There seem to be too many no-go zones among those who pride themselves on their liberalism and progressivism, just the people who should not be succumbing to the fear of backlash. I liked the contrast between daycare and university. Which are we dealing with. There is appropriate language and different modes of operating for different times and places. -- I had never heard the word "cant" before. Somewhat related loosely to your favorite "shibboleth", another word one never hears around here.

  8. Secular & Sacred HUMANISM. Defenders of the faith all around. I once described Warren Wilson as Daycare for Hippies to a reporter and the phrase got spread all over.

  9. Only the Lutherans got it right but the rest of the world is reluctant --recalcitrant one might say if not incorrigible .

  10. There are only two religions: free righteousness in Christ or glory in the works of man. I've thought lately how Paul says he is the worst of sinners, persecuted, etc. and how I am not like he in terms of seeing myself this way. The only time I really know myself as sinner is when I am at the communion rail receiving forgiveness. Then I know it. It's a two handed thing, too.

  11. So, when are you going to have the guts to say something about Islam and in defence of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who was shamed for her courage to speak against those who want to earn heaven even by imperialism and injustice?

  12. Guts? Westboro Baptists? Thailand child slavery? Plenty to be outraged against. School and synagogue shootings? I don't think guts are an issue. Guts are an issue maybe when one stirs the shit that's close to home--.Guts galore or else got to be nuts.

  13. The issue is: a heart of flesh or a heart of stone.

  14. Heart of stone and trying to make virtue of it. A student tells me being sensitive is both a blessing and a curse, and I say being oblivious is both a curse and a blessing.

  15. Each in its time, sensitivity and oblivion, as with ordered loves. It takes prayer to work on the situation. But a heart of flesh speaks to me more about motivation. Or passion. As well as zeal for what is right and helpful.

  16. I agree. Obedience (listening, hearing)--to be at work on any situation.

  17. Which is not the same as situation ethics.