html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="en" lang="en"> From the archives: Lovingkindness, motherfuckers.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Lovingkindness, motherfuckers.

If you are going to expose yourself on the Internets, you will need to have some way to respond to criticism. I can't say I consistently manage this, but it is good to reach high.

In the same way, monks, others may use these five modes of speech when speaking to you — speech that is timely or untimely, true or false, gentle or harsh, with a good or a harmful motive, and with a loving heart or hostility. In this way, monks, you should train yourselves: 'Neither shall our minds be affected by this, nor for this matter shall we give vent to evil words, but we shall remain full of concern and pity, with a mind of love, and we shall not give in to hatred. On the contrary, we shall live projecting thoughts of universal love to that very person, making him as well as the whole world the object of our thoughts of universal love — thoughts that have grown great, exalted and measureless. We shall dwell radiating these thoughts which are void of hostility and ill will.' It is in this way, monks, that you should train yourselves.

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17 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps, but I prefer Browning: he hated a lot because he loved so much...he hated the things that prevented him from loving.

Or, Ecclesiastes: there is a time for anger and a time for hate, a time for kindness and a time for love.

This means, as you say, "not giving way" to hatred but that is not the same thing as not speaking up against mean spiritedness or injustice or other things.

As the woman said: "beware false infinities" (Simone Weil).

Train your minds? Fair point. But this is the way of angels. The way of human beings is higher....

3:05 PM  
Blogger Dubin said...

Am I just hopeless? I don't even see why I should aspire to this. It's too much work. I'm usually a nice person, and very few people really get me going. So isn't that good enough? I AM KIND, Ms. Poopypants!!!

3:43 PM  
Blogger Dubin said...

Yeh, what Billo said. He said it better.

3:44 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Dubes! YOU ARE KIND!!! I put that up for *me*, 'cause I can't always remember my goal. Don't aspire to that crap, if you don't want to, and keep being my fierce and awesome defender.

3:50 PM  
Anonymous John Hughes said...

Now, you are making my day harder.

Here I am trying to find a middle path between the Puritan control freaks at sacbee.com and the Libertine blogosphere and you have to "ruin" a perfectly good post. Pooh.

I am hoping to push sacbee.com toward accepting the free-speech side of the blogosphere, but you are just never going to see motherfucker under a mainstream media web site, certainly not at sacbee.

Which probably says a lot about my chances of getting a regional blog watch that REALLY watches the local blogs wrapped inside sacbee.com.

Bummer.

Anyway, you can see what I'm trying to do here.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

I know, but try saying it out loud a couple times. It scans so well. Besides, there wasn't much content to that post. Does having that anywhere on the page mean that you can't link my blog until motherfucker is off the front?

3:57 PM  
Anonymous John Hughes said...

No, that's not how this demo project works. I monitor blog feeds and "tag" posts that make up the feed that sacbee would put online.

Monitoring the content is the only way sacbee would even discuss the concept. The idea of raw blog posts flowing into sacbee scares the powers that be there to no end.

4:03 PM  
Anonymous jens said...

John Hughes - is it a coincidence that your link leads to:

"At the risk of being even more widely despised than I currently am, I will lean over the plate and take one for the team on this,. It is not uncommon to meet pastors' wives who really let themselves go; they sometimes feel that because their husband is a pastor, he is therefore trapped into fidelity, which gives them cause for laziness. A wife who lets herself go and is not sexually available to her husband in the ways that the Song of Songs is so frank about is not responsible for her husband's sin, but she may not be helping him either."

OMG. OMFG. I'll have to try that with MY wife..."If you don't wear that crotchless pantyhose for me tonight, I just might go out for some gay massage instead!"

Not sure it would fly.

4:10 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Jens:
It would be totally awesome if she called you on that. "Enjoy your gay massage, dear."

4:13 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

Monitoring the content is the only way sacbee would even discuss the concept. The idea of raw blog posts flowing into sacbee scares the powers that be there to no end.

I can see why it would be worth having someone filter the good posts. You want ipsoSacto to be more than a Sacramento-themed RSS feed.

How come you don't have a Personal, or Life in the City-type category? It would be hard to fit my blog into the traditional news categories.

4:22 PM  
Anonymous John Hughes said...

I would love to have "city life" category, but the internal politics don't allow proposing that right now.

My immediate supervisor, who is a strong supporter of the blog watch concept, wants to focus on the official blogs and the (mostly boring) political discussions among insiders.

My theory is that once I get something in sacbee it will be easier to get something more. There's a big camel behind that nose peeking under the tent.

4:29 PM  
Anonymous jens said...

> "Enjoy your gay massage, dear."

How did you know she was going to say that? You haven't been talking behind my back, have you?

8:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Each to their own I guess, then, Megan.

Personally, I don't think projecting "thoughts of universal love" to each and every person, child molesters, rapists ...is the way to go.

I'd be surprised if you extended such thoughts to your ex or *that* girl, or to those who were mean to you when you were a kid in school.

And what should we say to Kashmiris, Chechens, Palestinians? Don't resist power and oppression but take the "higher" path?

Sorry, don't buy it. Can love ever be universal or is it always particular: coffee, snickers, *this* particular woman...

Man, even God is "vengeful"! :)

2:24 AM  
Anonymous thelonious_nick said...

"And what should we say to Kashmiris, Chechens, Palestinians? Don't resist power and oppression but take the "higher" path?"

Let's compare the success of their movements with the movements of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and Nelson Mandela.

7:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nick, I'm not sure if comparisons are that useful; I mean, it is widely recognized that England was on its way out from India or thinking about it from the 1910's onwards (pull back in investment).

I don't know much about Martin Luther or America's history but after centuries of slavery and a century of segregation I wonder if freedom was *only* a result of peaceful movements. It is quite plausible to suggest that the plantations became economically less feasible with the growth in agricultural productivity in Europe and , in a similar vein, segregation became more problematic in an era of 'liquid modernity' where more people have to be incorporated into the capitalist system.

the point being: i don't think we can make comparisons without looking at the political and economic contexts.

And one could come up with all sorts of counter examples. Do you think lack of military resistance to Nazi Germany would have been feasible? Or Communist Russia?

Shouldn't we count those as "successes" as well?

7:19 AM  
Blogger Megan said...

Lovingkindness to good people isn't a particularly demanding practice.

Don't want to give the wrong impression; I'm not a Buddhist or nothing.

4:29 PM  
Anonymous jens said...

Lovingkindness to good people is uncontroversial. I think there is some difference of opinion among us imaginary beings about who the good people are.

Slightly off-topic, but on-topic for compliments....I'm reading Nietzsche's "Beyond Good And Evil" at the moment, and it has a quote about "compliments":

In accordance with the slowly arising democratic order of things (and its cause, the intermarriage of masters and slaves), the originally noble and rare urge to ascribe value to oneself on one's own and to "think well" of oneself will actually be encouraged and spread more and more now; but it is always opposed by an older, ampler, and more deeply ingrained propensity -- and in the phenomenon of "vanity" this older propensity masters the younger one. The vain person is delighted by every good opinion he hears of himself (quite apart from all consideration of its utility, and also apart from truth or falsehood), just as every bad opinion of him pains him: for he submits to both, he feels subjected to them in accordance with that oldest instinct of submission that breaks out in him.

It is "the slave" in the blood of the vain person, a residue of the slave's craftiness -- and how much "slave" is still residual in woman, for example! -- that seeks to seduce him to good opinions about himself; it is also the slave who afterwards immediately prostrates himself before these opinions as if he had not called them forth.

6:14 PM  

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