Brain on Brain

Meditations on Psychology

I’m bias, being that I’m majoring in psychology, but I think psychology is the most important scientific field. The moment we created the atomic bomb, there could no longer be any doubt. We must understand the mind now that we, humans, are capable of destroying the planet. We are the first organisms, that we are aware of, that have an active influence on the course of our own evolution, the evolution of all other planetary life, and who hold the ecological fate of the planet in our hands. The factors that drive and control us are imperative to understand. I think psychology is the discipline that best addresses this issue.

There is no escaping the paradox that humans use the mind to study the mind. All scientists are dependent on the accuracy and objectivity of the tools they use to measure phenomena. Our minds cannot be objective in a strict and absolute sense. This train of thought could be expanded on much further, but it wasn’t the point of this post.

I had a thought a few moments ago that was triggered by the picture above. We use the mind to understand the mind. We have both conscious and unconscious dimensions of our mind. I can’t help but believe that there is a Platonic knowledge within all of us, a deeper and intuitive knowledge that most of us aren’t aware of, some catch glimpses of, and others are tormented by; why this is, I don’t know, but its existence is something I believe in.

Here is where it starts getting metaphysical and mystical. What if this deeper self is always there, knows you so completely that it understands you better than you are able too, and willingly withholds knowledge from you, knowledge it thinks you would not use well or that may cause you harm? What if for some reason it can’t help you? What if, what if, what if? What if this part of the psych is what we label God?

Is meditation, religion, psychedelics, forms of mental illness, or dreams glimpses of this deeper self?

Is our definition of science correct, or are we limiting what is understandable by the limitations of language?  The truest irony I’ve experienced the last four years is that the more I learn, the more I understand that I know so little, and that there will be things I will never grasp. It’s a hard axiom to accept. I happily remain delusional to it for the time being. 


The moment had arrived.

As I sprawled across the pavement, staring up at the vast openness of the Texas night sky, trying to comprehend what all those little white dots represented, I began to cry.

I rarely cry, yet I know the feeling that preludes it. There was none of that this time. The tears were some uncontrolled response to something that had clicked below my awareness. All my conscious mind could focus on was the ecstasy. I had never felt a deeper happiness in my life.

My friends, scattered around me, in there own worlds, all silently acknowledged my response, as if it was expected, as if it was required.

As the night grew, and as the tears became an unrepeatable fact of the past, my happiness persisted. My friends and I marched with the suburban night. We played with language, laughing at its limits, mocking its paradoxes, appreciating its beauty.

It was in the midst of this walk that my consciousness finally caught up to what I had realized while staring at the 8 billion year old masses of light. I had, for the first time in my life, seen my life, and all human’s life, from a nonhuman perspective.

It was my attempt at grasping what 8 billion years meant that caused this tectonic shift in understanding. With Carl Sagan’s “Pale Blue Dot” playing in my mind, I saw the crushingly humble insignificance of even my greatest problem; my ambition.

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar,” every “supreme leader,” every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.”

That all this is temporary, changed me. I glimpsed The Void.

I can become stressed by schoolwork, by managing the rapport of multiple beautiful females, and with the pressure my ambitions place upon me. This is only because I have forgotten that place I had once been, that peak of understanding, that verge of hinging to humanity but peering, unguarded, into the abyss.

A abyss that didn't resemble Nietzsche's woe, but the bliss of Buddha’s Void. The meaningless was beautiful, relieving, and liberating. By glancing this meaningless vastness, I had my evidences of meaning’s non-omnipotence. I understood that I am the creator and gardener of my meaning. I have the absolute responsibly of my happiness.

This was the moment I broke through a perspective barrier. I am tempted to say I will never experience another moment like this because I assume I have reached the highest level, but, secretly, I think there are many more levels to ascend too. It is truly a metamorphosing moment when one realizes that all of life is a game, and that we can chose whether or not to play.

To my ambition I repeat Shelley's ironically long lasting words:

"I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desart. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away."



The ancient Greek believed that within each person lay a voice. They called these voices Daemons. I think we would call them our consciousness, but I’d like to propose an alternative theory. I think these are our Gods.

Everything about us, our memories, our personality, our goals, our beliefs, our behaviors, are byproducts of our models of reality that we have created. Most of our model is constructed by our subconscious assimilating physical factors like gravity, light, textures, and so on. Our models are consciously changeable to the extent that our reason adheres to physical nature. (Insert fads like The Secret)

However, there is a way to bypass this “reason adhering to physical nature,” and that cheat code is the concept of God.

Without mudding the waters too much trying to define God, I’ll claim only that the word inspires an idea in all of us of an entity or something that transcends physical nature. For those who believe, they have at their disposal a tremendous power.

If they would dare listen to themselves, and ignore the Gods others offer them, they could create a God at harmony with themselves. Just try to imagine the fucking impact of accepting an idea of God that supports your true nature. How happy would that kind of person be? How motivated would that kind of person be? How powerful would that kind of person be? That kind of person could change the fucking world...given they believe in a God who cares about the outcome of this world.

And my mother fucking fellow atheists, we can do this too. Don’t let the word God scare you away. We’ve got a deeper, dormant part of ourselves we adamantly strain to keep asleep. Don’t shy away from unknown, mystical ideas. (Keep in mind that being atheist is to claim the same thing as any religious person, that you know what happens after death, that you know there is no God. Take a moment to let the irony waft over you. Be rational yet open-minded.)

I consider this idea of God to be the subconscious in a Platonic, Jungian, McKennain light; that I have within me a true and transcendent knowledge. I don’t know how to access this part of me at will and it seems to come in glimpses.

The point of this post is to claim that our ideas of this deeper part of us can be manipulated to give us the most happiness and power possible. There is no universal rule on how to do this, because we are all different. You have a voice in you head, a daemon. Get to know it. I think it has something to tell you.

(I can’t help but feel a twinge of shame after I finish one of these. They never turn out as profound as it feels in my mind. Suppose I should be proud I have the taste to tell I’m far from being “there.” Well, hope you enjoyed the chaos.)

The tool.


There is a system in america. The system can be given many labels. All informed voices agree upon this; it favors the minority. It favors the rich.

But what is America? America is a large, powerful tribe. The American tribe, like its primitive brothers, must maintain, excert, and defend against Power. Thus, one can measure America, and all other nations, by their most powerful entities. These entities used to be Governments, they are now Corporations. 

It is easy and popular to jump from this conclusion to screaming "corporations are evil!" Corporations don't have to be evil. They simply wield the most power. 

However, looking upon the state of the world compared to what is possible with given knowledge, resources, and creativity; Corporations are not "the best of all possible worlds," to be polite. 

Corporations have the power to feed the world, end war, end poverty, reverse global environmental damage, connect the world virtually, and bring 1st world knowledge to every part of the earth. Yet, corporations profit from putting 3rd world countries in debt; thus causing starvation, profit from waging wars, require the pillage of earth to continue to maintain themselves, and need the majority of people to remain stupid, and at the very less, uninterested, so they will continue consuming. 

Think of all the ways corporations keep us distracted.

Corporations have an incentive to maintain the american system, which has become the world system, commonly referred to as Capitalism.

Now, you may jump to the conclusion I am anti-capitalism and therefore pro-socialism. 

American media is to blame for this knee-jerk reaction--that anyone who denounces Capitalism is Socialist. This way of thinking is a logical fallacy called The False Dilemma. This faulty reasoning is induced by another cognitive shortcoming called "Priming.' 

You've Google. If you care, research it. Look, links included. 

I am not advocating Socialism. I am not condemning Capitalism. I am claiming that Capitalism is the most powerful system the world has ever known. 

The first major point being; Capitalism is the optimal tool to manipulate in order to bring about positive change in the world.

If we want to change the world, as any informed person should wish to do, we can play the game, learn the rules, and take their place. For the more ambitious, create your own corporation. But pay heed, you know the old saying about power and its potential to corrupt.

Don't be reactive. Proactively engage life. 

On being Offended

"Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves." -Carl Jung.

We get offended. Or at least that is how the offended phrases it. To ‘get’ offended, is to remove the responsibility from the person being offended.

No, we
take offense. We believe that we, semipermeable membranous sacs of fluids and bones, are justified in our anger at another’s opinion, and we go so far as to claim they caused our displeasurable feelings.

You chose to be offended.
But take a second and think about what it means to be offended. The implicit position of the person being offended is that they are entitled to be a judge. This is harmless because, well, we must be judges of reality in order to function.

"Knowing a great deal is not the same as being smart; intelligence is not information alone but also judgment, the manner in which information is collected and used" -Carl Sagen

The issue arises when we start believing we, as judges, have power, sway, influence, or entialitment. Many things can lead to the fleshy sacs, also known as humans, acquiring this view of themselves. Maybe blame can given to family or friends or peers or teachers or institutions. However, the most powerful factor towards the fleshy sac’s entitlement is religion.

I need not elaborate on the example offered by the followers of Islam this past week.

They were offended.

But they are not alone, the christian God, in the first chapter of the Bible is offended that his children ate of the tree of knowledge, so he condemned women to painful childbearing and men to toil the earth. The same God, as Jesus (confused?), who said:

"Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven."  -Luke 6:37

Thankfully, God didn't take offense to man's sin and drown everybody on the planet but a drunkard and his family...

Taking offense is a silly. No good comes of it, and at its worse it destroys; both lives and ideas. It suppresses the free exchange of ideas (The Inquisition, as one example) that we desperately need in order to tackle the immense problems facing the planet and it's inhabitants.
Chill the fuck out.


I'm full of shit. I have bias. I will never be completely objective. Everything I spit out has been churning beneath my consciousness for an unknowable amount of time.

I also have no answers. Be wary of any who claim they do. What I offer is a particular perspective. I believe this perspective, if I am capable of communicating it properly, is worth sharing.

I believe we have unique problems and tools that the great thinkers of old did and could not have predicted.

Ultimately, I am just one man. A relatively young and naive one. But it is this naivety that allows my audacity. I wish to always carry this delusion along side my skepticism. I hope you enjoy.

*I will continue updating this as I become more aware of my bullshit. I want any potntial reader to get a good taste of my intentions.

Thank you.

Is it moral to have children?

Have you heard about the monkey’s?

The fundamental rule that governs all biological life is the compulsion to replicate and pass on one’s genes. This is our most primitive instinct and one that has served us well the last few million years. It doesn’t anymore.

Humans have done what all gene inhabiting organisms wish to do. We have become the top of the food chain and have populated the planet. Our genes have won but our planet is losing.

Humans are, as far as we know, the only animal able to override their instincts. Its time we do so. We need to choose to stop reproducing.

Now, obviously this won’t work if applied to all people. Its not meant to be. You need to use that higher thinking you’ve been endowed with and evaluate yourself.

Chances shouldn’t be having any kids.

I’m not quite sure how best to implement an idea like this. The feelings sex elicits are such devastating rebuttals to any idea of this kind that it will have a hard time adhering to any large scale demographic. Have all the sex your body can handle, but use protection and contraception. The root of this problem amongst those who have the option of contraception could be argued as being religion or politics, but I think its something deeper. The problem is our whimsical idea of love.

We need to revolutionize our idea of love. Thats for another post though.

Our compulsion with wanting kids is largely a biological need, but it is also our response to our confusion about life. We don’t know what we’re here to do, if anything. We don’t know how to play this game of work, get loans, buy shit, and repeat. So we just have kids. We think thats the next stage in this life. Its not. This planet doesn’t need more children raised by parents unable to offer an ideal upbringing. For the pseudophilosophers (Its laymen):

1) Humans harm the planet more than they help it. A) They could do otherwise and choose not too.
B) To know and choose otherwise is immoral. 2) Having children adds to the immorality. 3) Having children is immoral. And for those aware of this, and still choose children. Understand; you are being selfish. Now before you react, selfishness isn't necessarily a bad thing. Think on that, but regardless, you are being selfish if you choose your individual happiness over the well being of the planet.

Mom and Dad; thanks for being heathens.

My Generation

I hate my generation but I'm compelled to have their approval.

We have so much god damn potential. I mean, we literally have more access to information than the president had 30 years ago. We have almost every scientific fact ever established, along with every half ass theory ever created, at our fucking finger tips. We can send our thoughts across the world at thousands of miles a second.

And what do we do with this?

We sext. We watch the lowest of our species degrade themselves infront of cameras. We sit on our asses and shove processed food into our gullet at such high volumes our body literally expands at a rate so quickly our skin begins to tear. The same skin that evolved with us for millions of years. We feel entitled. Entitled to be entertained. Entitled to not be offended.

Fuck that perspective. Probably your perspective.

You are not entitled to a single fucking thing, but recognize; you are statistically one of the luckest humans who as ever had a chance to exist.

I hope my whinging will give way to something of substance.

"Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Sahara."

Yin and Yang of Ego and Enlightenment

My humbleness comes in waves. I really like the analogy of emotions to waves, because I can’t seem to fucking hold on to any of mine. I have these frustratingly fleeting moments of supreme humility and empathy to the struggles of all those around me. I realize.

People are shitty and fucking rude because they are suffering.

Their stupidity leaves them in this perpetual state of stagnation. They wake into shit situations surrounded by shit people doing shit work. They play the game as if it were mandatory. They are purposeless people. And yet, where I stand on my moral high ground, judging these fools as if I am not their blind brother.

But unknowingly, and sometimes knowingly, I compare myself to these child like people, and I feel good about myself. I feel that I am truly living my life. I feel that I am this transcendent being. This illusion of my greatness is only because my contrast is so piss poor.

I will fucking fail and live a life full of regret if I continue to compare myself to the people who surround me.

I have a nanometer of self awareness. Enough so, that in fleeting moments, I realize how egotistical I am. My ego is fucking huge. It attempts to hide under a veil of humilty but it is a fucking wolf. It feeds on knowledge. I devour book and aricle alike, aggrogating as much information on as many topics as I can inorder to always maintain the number one spot amongst people perfectly content with knowing no more than sport scores and celebrity gossip.

I am the lost one. I am competing for the respect of people whom I do not respect.

But then there are those moments, moments where my ego falls asleep, and I see all people as equals. I see their prisons and suffer with them. These moments are blissful.

But then my ego returns, and takes control of my consciousness again. More powerful then before the bliss, because it realizes the power I am capable of. It wants that power. I want it. I want my ego to coexist with enlightenment.