Monday, February 06, 2012

A few areas for possible upcoming posts...or perhaps short takes...

I'll be on travel much of this week, but I wanted to sketch out a few ideas that might make interesting posts for the future:

  • "Rights" - do they exist?  I'm remind of this by reading a post on Kos about the sexual agenda of the Religious Right. A passage appears there to the effect of "Maybe you don't believe in common descent or evolution. Even though I think that's a foolish belief, you are entitled to it, but common descent is nonetheless true."  While for the purposes of everyday social engagement and politesse it's useful to treat people with the respect the presumption of rights would entail, and while for legal purposes it's crucial, especially at present to act with the presumption of certain rights and powers arranged, the construction of such rights, to me, appears at odds with how the world is experienced.
  • The Dalai Lama appeared on a Michael Palin travel documentary show.  (See here.) To be honest, the reactions of the Dalai Lama when he sat down with Palin were interesting to say the least. Two things stood out: Firstly, the Dalai Lama seemed to laugh a bit too much - I frankly couldn't figure out why, because the laughter seemed in some spots either forced or not exactly matching the tenor of the conversation.  But the other thing that stood out was a point where Palin noted that he was bound for Tibet after visiting Dharmsala.  It was strikingly clear that the Dalai Lama, like any of us, still deals with attachments.   The only other thing that stood out here - alluded to by Palin - was the degree to which the Dalai Lama/Tibet in exile thing is an enterprise.  The tragic implication is that people have quite a bit invested in this "in between" condition of Tibet/China/Dharmsala.  
  • On doing things that are difficult: I have been meaning to address this.
  • Interesting times: I'm living in them. Hopefully some mistakes will be profitable.

2 comments:

Sabio Lantz said...

Wow, I had to look up the word "politesse" - I thought you had misspelled the word "politeness" but only found that they mean the same thing. That made me wonder if the is a word like, "snobeeshe"!


Thanx for the new word, though I doubt I shall use it. But now I know its nuances.
Joking -- well sort of. :-)

On a serious note, I think I agree with you. "Rights" is a manipulative word. "Rights" triggers the notion of morality and ethics and all the religious tones that are layered nuances on that word.

There are no natural rights -- only rights that are fought for, agreed upon, struggled for and violated and redefined. Rights are a temporary contractual arrangement between people.

There is no natural "right to life", "right to choice", "right to health care", "right to food, clothing, sexual partner" or any such thing.

Is that what you meant. Do you agree with me about the power of nuances?

Mumon said...

Sabio-
Yeah. We agree.

But I gotta say, every now and then it's good to put an unusual word in one's writing. It's just not good to whelm the reader too often though. :-)