Saturday, September 17, 2011

Moving My Main Ideas to WordPress

Thanks for following me on Blogger at BunzBlog. I’ve moved my philosophical stuff to a new WordPress blog.
If you like please read my new post(s) there and follow me.

I'm doing this mainly to consolidate my ideas and gather feedback to complete a book I am writing on my discoveries inside and outside my "Self" -- the book is called Intelligent Life:  How Can the Meaning of Technology Transform Us?  Please let me know if you're interested in learning more.


Friday, August 19, 2011

Food for Thought Amid Financial Confusion

Here’s a logical extension of where we are headed with unbridled “free enterprise” capitalism, combined with computer technology:

In a few decades, after Steve Jobs dies, Apple as the most powerful company on the planet no longer needs a CEO or board of directors – it is run entirely by artificial intelligence in computers. Most if not all of the workers are in third world countries working for minimum wage.

It makes amazing profits – but there is no one to spend the money – no one to take vacations, send children to college, make love, read a poem or enjoy a sunset.

It’s just technology accumulating more money and tabulating it in spreadsheets – some shareholders may be pleased, but the few remaining wealthy families will die of depression, because there will be no one left to envy them.

On the other hand, if we use computers consciously we might be able to connect with some amazing higher energies—as suggested in this video. As I wrote last time—perhaps the Sun has feelings? It seems that there are energy patterns based on human emotions pervading our planet.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What If... The Sun Has Feelings?

The following is a fictional “article”—one wonders, however, if the fields of biophysics and astrophysics evolve at their present pace, whether it might not one day be true…


Editors at the prestigious scientific journal Insight made a startling discovery today, when two papers they were about to publish from divergent fields overlapped in their findings.

Neuroscientists at UCLA had used Cranial Telemetry to measure brain waves of thoughts as they passed through synapses between neurons in the prefrontal cortex in the temporal lobe of the brain to a sensitivity never before attained, and come upon a wavelength in the electromagnetic spectrum never before discovered—a higher frequency and shorter wavelength than even gamma rays--and simulating light in its combined wave/particle structure.

The lead scientist had named the new waveform Prometheus wave radiation and published its frequency at far less than even gamma rays. Gamma rays have a (wavelength) nanometer of .01 and a frequency of 3 x 109 Hz; the new wave found in the brain was measured at 0.001 nm 8 x 1011 Hz.

What is even more startling is that at the same time that the Cranial Telemetry findings were submitted to Insight, astrophysicists at the M.S. Observatorio Nacional in Brazil used a refined version to create an ultra sensitive Gamma Ray Spectrometer, and discovered a new level of radiation on the Sun at the same wavelength and frequency: 0.001 nm 8 x 1011 Hz. They named their new discovery Copernican radiation and also submitted their findings to Insight, which is the only way that the connection became apparent.

While the lead scientists from the two disparate laboratories had not communicated, as they were in far different disciplines, the synchronicity of the two discoveries startled the editors at Insight and a conference is planned online to discuss the relative similarities and perhaps differences in the two waves.

However, since the prefrontal cortex is the “executive” function of the brain, regulating emotion and thought, is it now fair to wonder, what is the Sun thinking (or feeling)?

After all, the Sun provides the executive function for our Solar System.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Why Corporations Aren't People

Almost twenty years ago, when my mother passed away, I had occasion to do some transactions with various banks. Most were straightforward but one of the largest in California gave me a very hard time, and I determined not to do business with them again.

Then recently another bank credit card had a limit on its cash back rewards which I reached, and at the same time the large bank advertised a friendly no limits reward policy. So I signed up.

After my first two purchases I received a phone message with no identification from “Credit Card Services” asking me to call back. When I did they wouldn’t tell me which bank and said it was a “courtesy call.”

I wanted to know who it was and called back, finally learning that it was the new credit card bank, not a surprise, and they said my account had been flagged for security.

I asked for what purchases they needed a confirmation and they indicated a $20 grocery charge I had made that day. I suggested that if they continued to call me for every charge and didn’t identify themselves on the phone I would not be a customer, and the calls stopped.

Then I finally had a cash reward available for $52.55 and wanted my cash. To get the cash sent online was a very complicated process and it had to be in $25 increments, meaning I could not get the full amount.

So I called and was told that the reason for the $25 increment was simply their “policy”, which was repeated by an indifferent supervisor with no attempt to empathize or see my point of view.

I understand their—obviously by withholding some money they keep me using the card. But at least make an attempt to see the customer’s perspective—not even the usual saccharine “we apologize for the inconvenience” from the supervisor.

I chalked it up to business as usual until I got a Customer Service survey form in email. I thought, wow, maybe they really have some semblance of interest and I can comment on my experience. That’s when I saw this in the email:

When you reach the login screen, please enter the following information:

Your project ID is: y8234x

Your login ID is: 9823456

Your password is: nrtfs

(Information is changed in the above example)

I mean really, what human would come up with a procedure like this for providing feedback, presumably to show a level of concern for the customer?

Human life is complicated enough. But as motivated as I was to perhaps indicate to them how unfeeling and indifferent they had already been, this proved to me that they had no comprehension of just how inconsiderate this request is.

This is just a small but meaningful example of the hoops that institutions put us through that make our lives so challenging today—because if we fail to comply with these “arbitrary policies” which are always for the institution’s benefit and not for ours, we know that we are in for a nightmare of bureaucratic red tape to straighten out the inevitable mess.

What makes it even worse is to watch the commercials for these companies on TV, or God forbid, to read their mission statements. One would think that the needs of the customer and care and consideration would be uppermost in their priorities. We’re always “part of the family”, dysfunctional as that family might be.

Give me a company that tells the truth. They didn’t invent the product to make our lives better and because they care—they are in it to make money.

And that is of course the crux of the matter.

Companies aren’t human because that is their real purpose, to increase the digits on a balance sheet.

The fact that humans (more or less) set the policies that maximize profit is irrelevant; the reality is that corporations are an abstraction that exist for an abstract concept: profit.

One can hear arguments that they do community work (for PR to increase profits) and provide jobs (which pay very little these days except for the exalted policy-makers)—and some of this might be mitigating factors if it weren’t for one thing.


The example of the log in procedure, the unwanted phone calls and the televised offer of a user friendly credit card all point to the unlevel playing field between corporations and humans.

Because of our humanity—we experience the fear that lack of compliance can engender and the overwhelming presence of their megalithic intrusion into our lives and find ourselves at the mercy of these figments of human imagination.

The power struggle that looms, now that the Supreme Court has qualified them as “human” entities with rights, may well mirror or rival the intensity of the current conflicts in the Middle East.

The central problem is the worship of money and the imbalance in power between these giant electronic entities and the humans that need to deal with them.

If humans don’t wise up, things will get worse. Of course we can always fill in a customer satisfaction form – then everything will be ok.

Monday, March 7, 2011

A Matter of Scale

Lately I’ve been “wasting” a lot of time thinking about strange things. For example…

DNA has been on Earth for 3.5 Billion years – within the first bacteria.

Human software maybe for 60 (circa 1950 early mainframe computers).

As we know from geneticist Juan Enriquez, among others, speaking at TED, both programs work on the same basis—change the Code and the output changes. Change the code in MS Word, the font changes. Change the code in DNA, the species characteristics change.

If both are based on an intentional idea, perhaps we can put aside for a moment the idea that life began spontaneously in the oceans, and play with the notion that maybe DNA software was “downloaded” from somewhere, someone or something.

I know it begs the question where did it ultimately originate – but we can certainly sense that it’s been running its Evolutionary “program” for a lot longer than we’ve been running Microsoft Word.

When we consider how long we’ve been using technology, that span of time is dwarfed by almost everything even in the most recent era.
When we look at our civilization in comparison to the age of primates, everything human is pretty much flattened into a relative minute of time.

And, if we take a larger perspective than that even the entire span of human history becomes almost insignificant…

Based on longevity alone one might surmise that a much Higher Intelligence has been “at work” on Earth for a span of time that is almost infinite in comparison to our own Science.

One might ask if other cultures have been in closer touch with this intelligence. I would submit that the Egyptians, with their mathematically and astronomically precise pyramids and a philosophy that did not seem to distinguish between philosophy, science and religion, or spirit and matter, might have been so connected. This would be supported by renegade archeologists who claim that the Great Pyramid is an astronomical marker and observatory and that the source of Egyptian wisdom predates the pharaohs by centuries if not millennia.

One of these archeologists puts the actual date of the Sphinx at 5000-8,000 years BC—altering our sense of the span of civilization significantly. The basis for this is the apparent presence of water erosion at the base which would have presumably been caused when the area was still fertile (not a desert).

One might well speculate how a civilization that used a different set of symbols and deities to represent what we consider psychological and metaphysical concepts might have experienced life on earth—in many ways they could be considered to have been running an entirely different “operating system.”

Of course even more “far out” theorists, starting with Erik von Daniken, author of Chariots of the Gods, have speculated that ancient monuments around the globe are evidence of visitations by extraterrestrials that might have altered the course of evolution with scientific wisdom (genetics) that we are only now discovering.

These speculations have been derided by conventional science as unfounded – but if we consider that only 750 years ago everyone in the western world believed the world was flat and now we “know” that the universe is about 14 billion years old, we might wonder what else we don’t know.

Von Daniken himself has been exposed as unscrupulous, making him almost a modern day Trickster, whose methods might be questionable but whose beliefs and theories seem eerily provocative.

For example, if you think about the Bible as a historical account of humans without technology, and consider that perhaps beings with advanced technology were present, then the “chariots in the sky” of Ezekiel would suggest flying craft, while the concept of preserving species from extinction with an “Ark” might similarly suggest a genetic storage facility—like the seed banks that the government is now creating to store the genetic source of the earth’s food supply in case of disaster or war.

Why are these issues so intriguing?

We base so much of our beliefs on left brain science without questioning it.

We take a lot of things for granted—starting with Existence.

Where did a universe with billions of galaxies that is still expanding after 14 billion years come from?

Is it an accident or a matter of chance? What would that even mean?

One might ask if such knowledge is not as far beyond our comprehension as the difference between the span of time of our own species or civilization, and the span of time of life on Earth—or the age of the solar system or our own galaxy, the Milky Way?

It is interesting to consider that our own software development in the computer field often refers to matters of “scale” –which are influenced by physical storage and computing power but also can be a function of programming acumen; in other words, new concepts like an algorithm can exponentially scale the power of a program to perform its task.

In the case of genetic decoding itself, it wasn’t until we reached the capacity of a Supercomputer that storing all of the genetic information for an individual or a species (its Genome) was possible.

So, are “primitive” cultures that “worship”, or relate directly with something Higher really so backward, compared to us, or do they have a relationship with a reality that we have lost, in spite of our magnificent scientific progress?

What would it mean to have such a relationship with reality?

Might it mean changing our own inner programming in some way, as to be able to literally connect with something much Higher and greater than ourselves?

How would that be accomplished. Does meditation begin to open such channels?

That’s what I sometimes meditate on when I have twenty minutes to spare.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Thoughts on IBM Computer v. Jeopardy Champs

IBM v. Jeopardy

I was amazed as I watched the PBS Nova program about how IBM has built a computer named “Watson” to play against Jeopardy champions, starting tonight.

The program followed advancements in artificial intelligence, competitions in chess, which is essentially entirely mathematical, and then the challenge of Jeopardy, where the “questions” are really answers and are filled with tricky language and idioms that are meaningful to humans but very difficult for a machine to “understand.”

The program describes how the IBM programming team solved various stages of the problem getting Watson to be able to process greater and greater levels of nuance and meaning. Some of the issues involved having the machine be able to “hear” the incorrect answers of other contestants so it doesn’t repeat their mistakes, and learning a strategy for wagering on Final Jeopardy.

The big realization is that the computer never really understands anything.

Computer “gets” nuance by performing incredibly complex searches through data, and it plays chess by analyzing a greater set of probabilities mathematically than a human can, but in both cases, what is apparent from these incredible feats is not what it can do, but what it isn’t capable of remotely doing – which is living as a natural organic life form.

While the human contestants on Jeopardy also have a huge processing unit in their brains, they are competing using their feelings, sensations and emotions, all of which are crystallized in their grasp of he language that represents reality in human terms.

Watson is using this language entirely differently, but performing calculations and searches on words and never really “taking in” the meaning.

To me, there are two aspects of this experience that are significant.

First, the human achievement of simulating language and human understanding is incredible, rivaling perhaps going to the moon, building the Internet or decoding the genome.

But Watson defeats its human competitors through brute data processing power and technology, reminding us in the process that our own logical mind is not the entirety of what we are—as authors like Eckhart Tolle point out to us when they suggest meditation to notice that our thoughts are only part of who or what we are.

Actual organic life, of which we are a part, is a vibrant expression of sensation and feelings including love, compassion, and a myriad of other emotions, all of which the human Jeopardy contestants call upon to understand the questions in the contest. Their processing of the information is slower than Watson, but their grasp of the meaning is infinitely deeper.

This should serve to remind us that what we are a part of, and what we take for granted as we worship at the altar of science and technology, is infinitely more complex and alive than the machines we create in our image.

Neuroscience, biology and quantum physics are only beginning to penetrate the previously unknowable boundaries of what life is.

In their hubris, scientists have suggested that they have created life by manufacturing DNA, but they have inserted the DNA into organic cells that were already energetic with whatever it is that animates ordinary matter as organic – call it spirit or what have you.

Watson for all of its mathematical power doesn’t have it.

Even the simplest life form does. My cat is connected to existence and the universe in a way Watson never will be. It understands a great deal of my behavior and possibly some of my language with its body, sense and perhaps intuition.

When we examine the complexity of our DNA and see that it works on the same principles as a computer—capable of being decoded symbolically—it suggests at least to me that there is also an intelligence at work within the very nature of life. And perhaps our development of computers, programming software like that which “animates” Watson, is a resonance with whatever it is (spirit, mind, energy) that is behind existence itself.

At its most basic the intention of life is simply to be--and to survive. That is the programming explained by Darwin in his theory of natural selection and evolution.

It is the belief of some scientists like Bruce Lipton, the author of Biology of Belief, that human evolution is the process of life becoming more conscious of a higher purpose through our own growth both individually and collectively. Perhaps technology itself and projects like Watson are lessons along that path, which may serve to hopefully educate us enough to evolve and survive as a species rather than use that same technology to make ourselves extinct.

The ultimate source of our own programming may not care whether the human expression of life survives or not—it may well have infinite variety of life forms to experience itself through.

Up until recently the concept of a higher intelligence has been the province of religion which has named it God, or perhaps science fiction.

Science has avoided this area for lack of evidence; and even the creation of a Watson does not speak to higher intelligence, except for the humans who programmed it to perform its incredible calculations.

But as we watch Watson compete against humans on Jeopardy we might get a vague sense that what Watson is showing us, and which we take for granted moment to moment, is precisely what Watson is NOT, and what we ARE – sensory beings capable of some of Watson’s processing power but also infinitely more in terms of love, touch, wisdom, grace and community.

Watson might win Final Jeopardy one or more of these nights, but it will never sense itself as alive. It will never have the capacity to connect to the source of its being on an organic level, because it is not a being but a thing.

I believe that this is at the root of much of the despair and isolation that people feel as they are literally overwhelmed and consumed by technology that seems to be its own reward, continually “upgrading” to achieve a level of perfection that can only come by being natural and human.

In my own life technology has reconnected me to many old friends and given me the means to pursue many human endeavors—in that way it has been immensely empowering. But I have to be careful that the allure of technology does not also make me deadened to what truly makes me human, and disconnect me from the very source of my humanity—my connection to a higher power—and perhaps my soul.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Emotional Freedom and Positive Energy by Judith Orloff

Recently I was turned on to some great resources in the form of two books, Emotional Freedom and Positive Energy by Judith Orloff – her web site also has some excellent videos.

What I really like about Dr. Orloff’s work is its warmth along with its practicality.

While both books have the usual set of self assessment tests, and are filled with anecdotes and case studies from Dr. Orloff’s practice, they both also provide pragmatic and positive steps to achieve growth and a more fulfilling life, difficult and worthy goals in our current cultural climate.

In Emotional Freedom Dr. Orloff uses the concept of “transformation” of negative emotions as a basis for being happier and more fulfilled. This is a much better foundation in my opinion that beginning with the idea that something is fundamentally “wrong” with you; for example, you’re diagnosed or feel like you’re depressed.

The fact is that life is challenging and filled with emotional issues ; alternatively avoiding these issues leads to a disconnected existence of isolation which is equally challenging.

The impressive structure of the book addresses four dimensions of emotions that Dr. Orloff suggests must each be in balance for a harmonious existence: the physical biology, a spiritual meaning of one’s state of being, the energetic power that can deplete or revive you, and finally the psychology or sources of the various feelings that can overwhelm us at various times.

She deals with each of these aspects as she identifies seven main emotions, describes their effect on us, and provides concrete recommendations for transforming the negative states into their positive counterparts.

She refers to this as “alchemy” and for those who face challenging feelings in their daily lives, learning techniques to transform emotions is worth its weight in gold.

Particularly for men, who sometimes are not as adept at articulating or identifying what they are feeling, specifically naming both the negative and positive states is particularly helpful. Here are the seven transformations Dr. Orloff cover:

In each case, the negative conditions are thoroughly described and identified along with practical steps to transform them into their positive counterparts.

What I found particularly useful was merely the ability to pinpoint common causes or triggers for the negative states and then the payoffs that ensue when one successfully transforms them through positive steps.

In Positive Energy, and earlier book, Dr. Orloff covers similar ground but from the perspective of a series of therapeutic “prescriptions” which are actually best practices for daily life. This book also features interviews with famous people who have put these practices into action in their own careers or personal lives.

Another aspect of both books that I appreciated was the identification of how our energy or emotions can become sapped. Frequently I have thought “what’s wrong with me – why can’t I cope with what others seem to handle effortlessly?”

Dr. Orloff describes toxic people and relationships as “energy vampires” and provides suggestions for how to combat their negative effects.

She also identifies societal drains – such as “techno-despair” – which can overcome us as we feel overwhelmed by the complexities and demands of the many media with which we’re constantly assaulted.  (My previous blog on the stresses of working with Microsoft software are a good example of techno-despair).

Part of the benefit of her descriptions is the “aha” moment when one realizes that one is not alone in feeling challenged by these kinds of experiences, and that there are solutions.

Though she is a medical doctor and a psychiatrist, Dr. Orloff also describes herself as an “intuitive” healer and strongly suggests that as we work with our emotions, we pay particular attention to what dreams may be telling us about our waking lives.

The way that I have used Emotional Freedom is to quiet myself when I feel agitated or overwhelmed and to notice the negative emotion that seems to have me in its grip; for example, as Dr. Orloff describes, the grocery store and a checkout line might frustrate me if I feel rushed. Taking a greater perspective, however, and focusing on being patient (and creating some space for myself internally) can allow me to not only negotiate the current circumstances, but feel better about my own capability to handle other issues going forward.

Either of these books provides a helpful set of practical suggestions for getting through challenging times and situations. Taken together, they are a resource a heartily recommend.