Why do we need to Define our Terms?

[thoughts from   ~burning woman~   by Sha’Tara]

Sometimes, in trying to explain things, I know that I come across as annoying, or worse, dissing those wonderful time-honoured traditions and beliefs and “undefined” concepts that bring mental comfort in troubling times of discomfort. But why insist on well-worn concepts being defined, and re-defined, particularly at this time?

Which particular concepts? The standard “big” ones: faith, hope, love, miracles, peace, brotherhood, charity. There is never any lack of extolling of these “virtues” or events. Why can’t I go along with that?

Was it Plato who said, ‘The unexamined life isn’t worth living’? Why don’t we apply this to our great “positive” concepts we like so much to talk about, to bandy about, to shout from the streets in demonstrations, to paint on a sash or use as mission statements? How would that read? “The Unexamined Virtue isn’t worth Proclaiming!”

That to me is a truism. Why don’t we examine our virtues? Why don’t we demand of them that they function according to the claims we make of them, or for them? Take this time, somewhere between Christmas and New Year: peace is the leading contender in unexamined concepts. Peace, peace, peace, we write and say to one another.

Many years ago, I studied the Bible. As the world’s #1 best seller, I thought it deserved my time since so many people purportedly studied it. Here’s a passage guaranteed not to be called upon to illustrate any modern sermon. Harsh, more than harsh, but illustrative, oh yes! They call these “Jeremiads” remember? The ranting prophet, only problem is, he was right. Is the following truthful? Does it apply to us today?

Je. 6:10 To whom can I speak and give warning? Who will listen to me? Their ears are closed so that they cannot hear. The word of the LORD is offensive to them; they find no pleasure in it.

Je. 6:11 But I am full of the wrath of the LORD, and I cannot hold it in. “Pour it out on the children in the street and on the young men gathered together; both husband and wife will be caught in it, and the old, those weighed down with years.

Je. 6:12 Their houses will be turned over to others, together with their fields and their wives, when I stretch out my hand against those who live in the land,” declares the LORD.

Je. 6:13 “From the least to the greatest, all are greedy for gain; prophets and priests alike, all practise deceit.

Je. 6:14 They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. ‘Peace, peace,’ they say, when there is no peace.

Je. 6:15 Are they ashamed of their loathsome conduct? No, they have no shame at all; they do not even know how to blush. So they will fall among the fallen; they will be brought down when I punish them,” says the LORD.

Whether it is “the LORD” or a corrupt and decadent system that brings “punishment” we know from history that said “punishment” is unavoidable, unless there is a collective 180 degree turn away from the current way of conducting “business” between people and the planet. Pay particular heed to Jeremiah’s complaint: “Peace, peace, they say, when there is no peace.” Isn’t that exactly the case right now? When someone wishes me “peace” in the tradition of this time, I feel sick at heart, knowing the greeting is not analyzed, not defined, not ground up in the crucible of awareness to be offered as a priceless and unblemished gem. In fact it comes in the opposite guise because it is unexamined in the light of current reality. To me, it is a curse.

For who are those so quick to offer ‘peace’ to each other or their neighbours? Those who would never define it for themselves. Those who use it as a feel good thing, a sort of dessert. A sort of magic formula. That traditional wave of the hand by the queen as she rattles by on the street in her fancy carriage and the exploited sheeple happily wave back in glowing subservience.

But there is another reality: that of wars of resources, exploitation, profit, extortion, lust; of racism and bigotry. From those wars come millions of refugees, and how easy it is to see how those who promote the wars, support the wars and do not suffer from the wars but rather profit from them, hardening themselves against the dispossessed. How easy it is to see how ‘the haves’ choose to make themselves comfortable with their world; to overlook the growing intensity of its evil agenda, perhaps hoping against hope that if they make deals with an evil system, the system in turn will leave them have their fake bit of peace.

Understand that when I use the term ‘the world’ I don’t mean this planet or its natural environment. What I mean (properly defined) is man’s global civilization. So, unless one has made a “public” statement of non-collusion with that civilization (I have, by the way, because I know what “the world” consists of) everyone is a bona fide member of ‘the world’ and functions as a representative, a promoter, a worshipper, an agent, a member, at the very least, an adjunct of said ‘world.’

Because they are unexamined in the light of today’s reality, all the great virtues bandied about become nothing but curses. What good does it do when passing by a starving child to wish her health and well-being; to say, “be fed and clothe and praise God for your life”? But when the relatively rich give each other wishes of health, happiness, peace and love, aren’t they in fact cursing the rest of the world that stares at a life they can never have; a life taken from them and that slips away from them in excruciating pain and sorrow? But not to worry, when it comes time to vote, it will always be “the rich” who will garner the majority votes and predictably in a fake system nothing will ever change except for the worse.  And predictably there will be a collective sigh of comfort when it is discovered it is the rich “Democrats” who won.  We can go back to ruling our Empire through hypocrisy and feel good about ourselves.

In closing, another very annoying biblical quote: Brother James, have at it!

Ja. 2:15 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food.

Ja. 2:16 If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?

Ja. 2:17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.”

Here’s another from James:

“Ja. 5:1 Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you.

Ja. 5:2 Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes.

Ja. 5:3 Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days.

Ja. 5:4 Look! The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty.

Ja. 5:5 You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter. [Or yourselves as in a day of feasting]

Ja. 5:6 You have condemned and murdered innocent men, who were not opposing you.”

Any truth in this yet? You see, it’s really all about definitions. The world creates illusions to suit every need and desire. Whatever you want, it will proffer. For a price, of course, but it will also offer the credit card if you don’t have the cash. Conversely, if you don’t play the game, it will find ways to punish, some subtle, like being unemployed and forced out of your home, and some kept hidden in Guantanamo. Which makes me want to define the word: torture – another time.

Definitions. A life lived without being defined (or examined); when its virtuous or feel-good notions aren’t constantly re-defined against the light of the day, is a life, I wouldn’t say ‘not worth living’ but rather carefully faked. A life lived in an entertainment centre surrounded by images on wide screens, on cathedral tapestries, or wandering through museums and mausoleums.

Definitions. I had a recurring dream a few nights ago, of two very large, obviously GMO designed fanged and slavering black dog-like beasts chasing after unarmed people who, in terror, tried to run away from them. Some got away but only at the cost of others being caught and torn to pieces. You have to hear the screams, see the blood, experience such a thing to understand.

Defined: these are the dogs of war. And they are currently running loose throughout the Greater Middle East, much of Africa and wherever drugs are being grown or manufactured. They are also active in refugee camps; in worker slave camps; in sweat shops and in countries the US Empire holds as “non conforming” and a threat to its claims of planetary hegemony. The bits and pieces of the torn bodies I saw in my dreams are being sold at a discount at Walmart and on Amazon. Where do you shop, and do business? Where it’s cheaper and most convenient?

The real world doesn’t have to fear forgetfulness.
It’s a tough customer.
It sits on our shoulders,
weighs on our hearts,
tumbles to our feet.
There’s no escaping it,
it tags along each time we flee.
And there’s no stop
along our escape route
where reality isn’t expecting us. — Wisława Szymborska, from “The Real World”

 

 

14 thoughts on “Why do we need to Define our Terms?

  1. gserpent

    I agree with your message completely, but using a book written to deceive will only deceive.
    On the Old Testament of the Bible when they say Lord, they are referring to a Pharaoh of Lower Egypt. With Christianity, Islam and the Jews all seeing Jeremiah as a profit, I know I’m right. All three are pure Lower Egyptian.
    The people not going along with the Lord were Upper Egyptians. They had their own Pharaoh and saw the Lower Egyptian Pharaoh as a psychopath. Jeremiah was a High Priest in Lower Egypt. His job was to try to convert Upper Egyptians. But we are led to believe he was a poor little old prophet trying to get people to hear the poor bearded man in the sky.

    James was the brother on Jesus. The older brother who for some reason was not the chosen one. I think he had a blemish, you could not rule if you were not perfect. So it went to the next born. This family was very rich. They wanted to make Jesus the Emperor if Rome. James, as we’re all the disciples, were going around and trying sell this story of a chosen one born of Royal blood. Just like modern day politicians will try get people to vote for who they want as President. What is a favorite subject of politicians.? Berating the rich and promising more fore the poor. That is exactly what James was doing. “If my brother becomes Emperor, we will slam the rich and give to the poor.” Of course they were lies back then just like they are today. Everything in the Bible is the politics of the day spun to sound religious.

    Reply
    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Hi GS… I can see you have a serious problem with “the Bible.” I don’t. Let me explain it this way: if all I have is a work truck, and I use to to take the kids to school, or go shopping, I’m not saying it’s because it’s the ideal vehicle for that purpose. I’m saying it’s what I have and it serves my purpose. I’m not endorsing the truck, I’m using it for transportation because I have nothing more suitable. The Bible is suitable to explain many situations of earth. My “interpretation” is the proper one because it is accepted by billions of people. I use their language, a language I learned at my mother’s knees. If I lived in Beijing I wouldn’t insist that everyone there learn French so they could understand me. It’s not about a language, it’s about communication. You say the Bible was written to deceive, I don’t think so. I think it was written, period. That some of it was used to deceive later on; that some of it was changed, of course. Why should the Bible be exempt from being raped by those who fornicate with history? Believe all things, believe in nothing: that is my motto. If the Bible says a thing is so, it is so, within the context of that book. Arguing against it only demeans me, it doesn’t change the book, or the billions who cling to it as their god’s truth.

      Let me ask this: “Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you.” Was that written to deceive? If it was, all I can say to that is, please deceive me more!

      Reply
      1. gserpent

        A truck is way more dependable than the Bible. 😉
        Lets say you are renting that truck. The people who rent you that truck have raped children and they killed people so they could steal their land to build malls at the places you shop. Would you continue to rent that truck? Maybe you would, maybe you wouldn’t or maybe you would defend them so others would continue to rent trucks from them. But hey, you would still love them, do good to them and bless them. If that really happened the people doing the renting would go out of business quick, so why has it not happened with religion or “The Bible”? Maybe because the deception runs so deep that even people who are ‘awake’ will defend it.
        I can count on one hand the number of people who know the truth about who wrote the Bible, but when we try to bring truth out we get nothing but flack. If arguing against is demeaning then I guess that means that I or my work has very little worth. Which is true in the eyes of the religious. If Love your enemy, do good to those who hate you and bless those who curse you have been in that book since the beginning, than why did they burn Witches, Wizards, Druids or any woman who thought for themselves? Do those rules only apply to the followers? This Heathen knows better.

      2. Sha'Tara Post author

        None of that was my intent. Pushing the truck analogy (usually a pointless exercise) the truck can be rented with the intent to run it into a crowd of people to kill as many as possible, for whatever reason. Is the truck to blame? Are those who manufactured and rented out the truck at fault? I would say guilt rests entirely with the driver of that truck. I used to go into arguments about the horribleness of the “Bible” until the Teachers started using it themselves to make points since it was one collection of written materials and history I was familiar with. One can go after those who misuse a tool, but the tool itself? If I smash my thumb with a hammer, is the hammer at fault? If I remembered enough of it from my reading, I could probably use perfectly good quotes from “Mein Kampf” without endorsing Hitler’s ethnic cleansing agenda. Regardless of which side one chooses to be on, it is always counterproductive to demonize anything. God’s demonization of Lucifer and Satan hasn’t worked out so well. It’s made God look petty and exposed the fact that “he” is not omnipotent. Those who claim that the Bible is God’s word are really ignorant people: the bible exposes their God as a dangerous psychopath, more a Donald Trump than any sort of benevolent, loving deity. The world has two wonderful witnesses to God’s character: his followers and the Bible. If I were God I’d be seriously embarrassed about both.

  2. franklparker

    I’m with gserpent on this, Sha’Tara. Except that, whatever the original purpose for which the words you quote were spoken/written, they DO reflect many of today’s realities. Like gserpent I don’t trust those who would rob the rich to help the poor. And sometimes people are so cynical that they even distrust the one thing that has the power to eliminate poverty: education. Because they call it ‘brain washing’, or by some equally damning epithet. And, sometimes, it is. I remain an optimist and see that all is not yet lost. There are people doing good in the world, mostly through NGOs, organisations that get a bad press from both ends of the political spectrum.

    Reply
    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Thank you Frank. You say, quote, “whatever the original purpose for which the words you quote were spoken/written, they DO reflect many of today’s realities.”
      That was the whole point. To tear up the argument over the history of the quote is pointless. I don’t care if Jeremiah even existed, or Jesus, or brother James. These words are tools that express so much about human nature, how… the more things change, the more they stay the same and even if we manage for a time to develop a quasi-equalitarian society it’s but a matter of time before it is destroyed and we’re smack dab back in Victorian society, or the one in Ireland you wrote about {A Purgatory of Misery} and I finally couldn’t read because it literally broke my heart.
      You say you distrust those who would rob the rich to help the poor. Well, so do I. But Charles Dickens had it right about his Scrooge. It must come from the heart of the individual to be real and to have any lasting value. Both the French revolution and the Russian revolution were ostensibly to equalize resources. They robbed the rich… only it wasn’t the poor who got the windfall, it was another bunch of carpetbaggers who became the new oppressive elites. That is why I conclude so many of my posts by explaining a bit more about compassion as a result of self-empowerment. It is as individuals that we need to take responsibility for our society, our civilization, our world and all those others who try to survive in it whom we exploit, oppress and massacre for profit and pleasure.

      Reply
  3. Phil Huston

    Holy shit! Semantic wars! If I’m against them, does that make me anti-semantic? Deeds speak, words collude to obfuscate simply by their nature. The canons of rhetoric and the Briggs-Meyers graph make that blatantly obvious. Twenty five percent of everybody will disagree with something, no matter how carefully worded. No one can argue with, say, Mother Teresa. Peace starts between two people. If they can spread it, fine. If one is a giver and another a taker, so be it. Give and intent are everything. The rest is just words.

    Reply
    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      That is funny, and yes, you are definitely anti semantic… but that’s not a bad thing! Speaking of funny, I wasn’t intending to enter into semantics, or book meanings – I don’t do that. I wanted to point out that when we use certain “time honoured” terms, we should define (not change) to ourselves what exactly we mean. If I were of those bandying peace about (I used to be) I’d want to be sure that I wasn’t actually cursing someone. Before we wish each other “peace” let’s just determine how to stop our wars, wars that keep our economy, such as it is, limping along while innocents die by the millions. We have all these precious holy, sacred, woozy-warm, traditional words we use when the meaning of the word flies in the face of our reality. Either ditch the word and face the reality, or change the reality. It’s hypocritical to go about wishing peace, hope, love when there is no peace, no hope and no love.

      Reply
  4. stolzyblog

    So many topics ricocheting off one another here, I’m hesitant to enter the fray — for what value could I add? Taking a stab at 2 points percolating within the commentary… Defining Terms. Yes, there could stand to be more meticulousness (and less velocity) in all of our language and discourse, especially with ourselves — that is the root of it all. For many words we have not caught the thought; they simply automate and serve as vague symbols for things we have not reasoned out or sculpted out, to rightly signal the necessary artistic element needed as a compliment to the rational, the calculational. As to the Bible, Patricia Sun had a very good basic formula from where to start: it is an intuitive document. Not a text or a thesis or grist in any fashion for the analytical mill. Do we criticize the verity of a Navajo legend or Goethe’s Faust for that matter? No, we reflect and mull and live with it. Rhetorical approach does not apply; those who apply it are in the wrong frequency. A passage, especially from John’s Gospel, for example, will reveal itself to the careful observer in an entirely different way 15 years hence. And without the necessary mood of openness, one is not even reading it. It is as though someone were trying to comprehend the Mona Lisa by doing a chemical analysis of the blue pigment in the folds of the shawl. So I think and experience.

    Reply
    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Without having the same affinity for appropriate words, I can still honestly claim to understand your comment, and to appreciate it. This thing about the Mona Lisa, that is so true.

      Reply
  5. adamspiritualwarrior

    0 thoughts on “Is Stephen Hawking’s Death a Coincidence? [video]”
    adamspiritualwarrior
    March 14, 2018 at 4:05 pm
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Well said!
    ”We’re told when to be happy, when to be sad, when to mourn, when to be outraged, when to hate, when to love, when to relinquish our barely intact rights, when to fund a cause… what colours to wear and decorate with, what hairstyle to adopt… it’s all scripted by the controllers.”
    I refuse to have my perceptions of this reality, telling me what to believe and react to, like a Pavlov Dog, and told how to read interpret data of this reality around me. I refuse to have my reactions and thoughts guided like a cat following a laser dot, on cue. I reject all this and withdraw my Consent on all dimensional levels and timelines. I never consented to this BS.
    Instead I’m a self aware sovereign being getting stronger every day, helped and reinforced by the growing organic human DNA awakening upswell unstoppable Conscious awakening , linking in with other awakened souls, Their 5G network is not going to stop this. We are onto them.
    I mean this literally they can goto hell, the low frequency realm theyre creating for themselves. Our frequency civilisation dimension isn’t theirs. As Lada Ray explains in her QCS Quantum Calibration Scale. Its our guide emotional feedback way out of the Frequency Prison http://ladarayinfo.weebly.com/quantum-calibrations.html
    Reply

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