Thursday, May 15, 2008

Book2: Mistakes i made on the road homeward

This is a work in progress, its my second book called "mistakes i made on the road homeward". It is far more personal than the first book detailing some of my suppsedly worst mistakes, some of my traumas and hopefully a way out from them. Comments are welcome.

Book 1


Mistakes I made on the road homeward.

The tentative working title for this book is “Mistakes I made on the road homeward.” Hopefully after I am done writing it will still be an accurate title. One of the most important steps on the road home, the road to the inner self, the core self and in essence to who you are and who you want to be is admitting once mistakes. The second step on the road is letting go of the blame. Could just as easily be the millionth step because when one lets go of the blame one is almost to the goal anyway so it’s all relative really.

My biggest mistake is … self hatred? Or perhaps it is my rational mind or my obesity. Or the very search for the mistake that is the mistake itself. I don’t know that yet and I hope that by writing this book I will. It is difficult to hold all the thoughts in a coherent form for long, over the last 10 years I have gathered so many thoughts and ideas about myself that it is getting impossible to hold them all for any period of time and try to integrate them into who I am and still remember not to lose more when I integrate less. So I wrote the first book in an effort to teach healing, views on the universe and go through my personal purgatory emotionally. What I called books in the first book are closer to acts or parts. In the future I will attempt to refer to them as parts or acts instead of individual books. So this is my second book by the new calculation. This second book then will be more about my study of my own mistakes on a more personal level as I go through my own healing journey now that I am out of the emotional purgatory I was in during the first book. Having just recovered from emotional breakups and the likes I start this second book from a far more balanced approach, ready to come out of the emotional sauna and take my first uneasy steps on this road. Soon I will leave my country of birth, Finland, and go on a journey I do not know where to. This journey was started by me long before I was born, by the choices I made in the past lives that lead me here and through the infinity all of my existence has culminated on this one point, this point that will lead me away from the womb. Of course every step of the road is a step that the entire universe listens to with silent reverence as well as a cacophony of applause.

Even the smallest of ants taking the smallest of steps warrants a symphony of ecstasy from a universe that knows nothing but beauty. So, now I am sitting on the doorstep looking out, where will this new path lead I wonder, who will I meet, what will I laugh about, what will I cry about, how will I suffer, how will I enjoy. All that my mind is focused on is how exciting it will be. All the feelings of dread, fear, anxiety, and horror are mixed in a pot in my stomach and my soul throws in one breath of spices and it is all transformed into loving anticipation for the journey ahead. I will try not to bore the universe with too many details of how this journey came about but it is best to write it down at the beginning.

I am a conscientious objector, when I was assigned to work at a government facility, the supervisor and I did not exactly see eye to eye, and eventually the situation reached a point where the supervisor forged documents against my wishes and postponed my service illegally. I sued and I was returned to service but by that time the situation was so inflamed that another incident was bound to happen, which did when they first refused to give me a mandatory work assignment in effect once again delaying my service illegally and then refusing to compensate any of the trouble they caused. After this I was forced to admit that Finland despite my deep love for my country and commitment to it, was and still is a class society. Thus I refused to serve as I was being seriously mistreated and threatened for doing my job as a conscientious objector. I took the matter to case and lost, as I am writing this I face four and a half month in prison because I refuse to be a warrior, because in essence I refuse to kill others to defend a state that does not defend its own.

Like Mahatma Gandhi I refuse to accept tyranny and a silent class society as the way forward. I refuse to live in a society where it is accept that the government teaches how to kill for free but to learn first aid you have to pay. I refuse to live in a country where there are tens of thousands of homeless people risking death every day, and we spend billions on defense, preparing for a war that nobody can win. It is like a man spending his entire life building his sons funerary pyre but never having any children. So I leave, in the hope that Finland will wake up and see what it is doing to itself. I know there is little chance for that as my life is too small and too insignificant, yet I do it anyway. It is not about how small or insignificant my life or my actions are. It is about standing up to tyranny and oppression.

So I leave, I leave my country of birth, I leave the country where my family has lived for more than 10 generations. I hope I will come back one day, what the future holds in store for me I can not say.

It is so hard, so hard to think I have to leave. I know I should simply lay back and let it happen, to go with the flow and let what is going to happen to happen. I always have a choice but I’m not sitting here to make a choice, I am here to try to understand it. Then again, I’ve made my choice and I do not write about it here in the hopes of changing my future, I write about it here in the hopes of changing your future. There is divine beauty in everything in fact everything is nothing but divine beauty. I do not refuse to serve because violence is wrong by definition a man who makes a choice to kill is as beautiful as the man who makes a choice to love. In the eyes of God, if I dare to even think what he would see, all are equal and all acts are one. So I am here, choosing to refuse armed service not because killing is wrong but because killing is unnecessary. In a world where we struggle for resources with too few for too many killing would be necessary, or more accurately, death would be necessary. But in a world where there is more than enough to go around for everyone and as societies develop birth rates decline we no longer need to kill and no longer need to struggle.

When we are threatened with violence we should first avoid our attacker, then embrace our attacker and if nothing else works, prevent our attacker. Meaning that we should seek to avoid confrontation, then reconcile differences and only then seek to defend ourselves with force and never strike in anger or in vengeance. If our neighbor takes our land in a war it is theirs and we should not seek to gain it back years or even generations later. As long as there is a way to survive on the kindness of friends we should never seek to survive on the weakness of our foes. A strong friend is always better than a weak enemy. If you surround yourself with weak enemies you can rule and dominate, one spell of weakness and you will find yourself surrounded by stronger enemies. If you surround yourself with strong friends no matter how weak you might be you will be safe.

So, we should seek to be friends to all and enemies to none. Not because it is what weaklings or cowards would do but because it is what a true leader amongst nations would do. Seek to be friends with all and enemies with none. Even those whom we hostile to us would be our friends, and like friends in error we should wait patiently for them to correct their ways so we can welcome them as brothers and sisters! All nations just as all living creatures need a system to defend themselves with. Countries need armies but before that they need something to defend. Is there a purpose for a defense if all you are defending is a system of inequality, illogicality and injustice?

Love is the answer, when you act out of love and not out of fear or hate you will be acting in accordance with your higher desires and through that, the will of god. When you defend your country or your land with the force of arms and do so in accordance with love combined with wisdom and courage you will do great things. A country governed by fear, by a fear of the foreign, fear of the alien or the strange assaulting a country governed by love will succeed if the country governed by love does not defend itself. The country governed by love can strike with the smallest amount of force needed to incapacitate the enemy and tend to those who no longer threaten it, with equal love as it does to those that love it. When your immune system fails and you get ill your body has to kill those viruses or bacteria that are already in and threatening you, but before that happened your body had to have a long series of weaknesses leading to the eventual illness. When tissue or cells don’t get energy and release of toxins as they need to they slowly build up until they get ill and eventually a sickness sets in, by which point the immune system has to step in. It is possible to tend to your body well and reduce the amount of viruses and bacteria that can enter you at all but some bacteria will always enter and your choice to stay alive is stronger than their choice to kill you. But still it is possible to vastly reduce, even if not completely eliminate death in your body by making it impossible for bacteria to get a foothold in it.

This is of course just my view as the universe and god, at least as I understand it, has no preference what so ever so you are just as right as I am. One of the hardest things I’ve had to do is realize that abusers, the dirtiest child molesting pedophiles and Stalin’s and Hitler’s in the world are just as beautiful as you or me or Jesus Christ or any other creature that has ever lived. They were not born with the tag on their forehead that reads, sinner, their actions were not and are not inherently bad any more than our actions are, by negative, inherently good. Their actions simply are. What defines us and them is how we want to be in relation to them. What do we want our existence to say about pedophiles and mass murderers? Looking at the recent fairly popular movie 300 about the Spartans and the hero worship that their culture had I couldn’t help but feel saddened by the lack of mention that Spartans considered it a proper education for young girls age 13 to be given to older men to do their sexual bidding, though I must point out it was only anal sex. The Spartans thought it was all right if it was simply anal but they forbade vaginal intercourse for these sexual pupils until they were properly married or so has been told. In their society it was the thing to be and the way to be, had our supposedly modern values been used in that era it would have been considered barbaric and godless.

So who am I to go back in time and say they were wrong and I am right, just as I wonder, who am I to go sideways in time and say they are wrong and I am right. That the act of killing or raping is badly simply because. It is bad because I choose that I do not wish to be so. I do not wish to kill and I do not wish to rape but it is not inherently so. I’ve gone through a development that led me to this point where I choose to be something other than a killer or a rapist. But knowing that there are still killers and rapists in the world means I have to defend myself as I see fit or risk having my existence over-ruled by their desire. So towards that end I have to be in the physical and be in the now. That is also why a country must have an army, to enforce the collective ruling of the country against other countries. The only way to completely eliminate war and organized pain and suffering would be to change or force everyone to be peaceful and agree and such a world is a world where change is no longer happening, a world that is standing still. The wonder, the beauty and the horror of Earth is that we are a world that is not standing still, that we are a world that is fast moving from one disaster to another simply because objects moving fast get to make more choices and we as humans are a fast developing people, mere 10 millennia’s ago we were living in mud huts and running after deer with sticks in hand while now we are blasting rockets into space and a few years from now we will begin to really settle into space. Just so we don’t miss the adventure we will come across some new universal danger we have to face, resist, struggle, lose or overcome and head to the next challenge.

The more people resist and struggle, the more people seek to be more, to be less, to be enlightened, to be earthly, to be tall to be short the more choices we need and the faster we go. Like a fast beating heart making love, we will fill with all that the universe has to offer before we explode in joy and start it all over again. It is the fear of the end of our journey as well as the love of our journey that keeps the journey going. As the end of our journey approaches we are filled with both fear and love, fear of the end of our journey, what truly lies beyond and love at the end of our journey and the beginning of another. Love truly has no opposite love simply is. Opposite of love isn’t fear since fear is an expression of losing love and to lose something you need to have something. Fear and love are deeply connected and will remain that way for all time. It is fear we do not face and love we do not face that is the opposite of love. Opposite of love is that which we do not meet and that which we do not feel.

Were a meteorite to strike the earth today and I to watch it come down I would be filled with fear as fear is a part of the human existence, I would also be filled with love, I would be filled with love at the end of the journey and return to the beginning. If I were to deny myself the feeling of fear I would deny myself a large part of my existence, a large part of what can bring me joy. It is like a rollercoaster, if you do not fear it there is no joy in it, it does not grip your stomach it does not make you love life if it is all safe. So enjoy your fear, enjoy your limited existence, enjoy all the limitations as they are in part what define you, they are also a great important part of who you are and who you’ve chosen to be. If you fear losing love then rejoice in that fear, it tells you that you value your love, you value what you love and be true to yourself. Act as you feel, if you feel fear don’t turn it into anger if it did not come to you as anger, let the fear come to you, let it flow to every cell and every fiber of your being, let it be everything you are. Go with the experience until something else comes along for you to play with. God answered to Neale Donald Walsch in terms he could understand because he asked the questions, God answers to you in terms you can understand because you are asking the questions. God talks to all of us in our terms always saying precisely what we want to hear because there can be nothing else. I would venture as far as to say that god speaks to the schizophrenics in their terms just as he speaks to the saints in theirs. Both of them have chosen their path and need their support, when I blame myself it sounds the same as when I praise myself. In my darkest moments the voice of god is there just as in my brightest moments the voice of god is there.

God spoke to Mohammad in terms he could understand, he spoke to Buddha in terms he could understand, he spoke to Neale in terms he could understand and speaks to me in terms I can understand. God speaks in every small piece of universe and every large piece of creation in the sky. There is no boundary to creation and we can do what we wish. So love when you hate, love when you love, love when you fear, love when ever you are and what ever you are. Some times let go and forget it all, sink back into oblivion and rise again slowly reaching realization, cry about your mistakes, shake, throw up, feel sick, enjoy, laugh, promise to never make the same mistakes, lie back and start all over again. What ever you do God loves you because God could do nothing else. God doesn’t tell you to enjoy life and do something, God tells you to enjoy life because there is nothing but joy, you simply need to be reminded of it every now and then simply for the joy of remembering it.

I’ve been here 3 times or more in this life time. Come to the top, realize it all, spin around and jump back into the water and climb again. Some people climb mountains, us spiritual enthusiasts climb truths, we scurry to the top, we fight clean, we fight dirty and once we get there we laugh, party, sigh and jump back into the water laughing the entire way down.

I can understand the true face of god but never talk about it any word I use to describe it always marks away something that it is as well. How do you say where to shoot to hit a target when you are in inside a bubble? No matter where you aim you will always hit the bubble and no matter where you say you shouldn’t aim you will always hit the same bubble. So it is pointless to describe gods love directly, I can only hope to describe its actions, but even that is impossible as all actions are of equal value, I can’t say you should love and not hate as God loves hate as much as God loves love. God is the absolute everything, from the most judgmental pieces of existence to the most all loving piece and everything in between. That is the difficulty in describing God, no matter how you describe it you will always be wrong, just as much as you will always be right. You can be a judgmental preacher and be right, you can be a loving and be right, you can be neither, both, all, or the box by the door and always be right and always be wrong. There really is no up and no down, no left and no right, nothing at all. Let there be light, let there be matter, sound, electricity, sports cars, MTV and pop music, though hopefully less of the last two. The thing that brought all of this together, all of this energy to matter was a thought, when a choice is made in a state with no choices that choice twists matter itself, forms it into a shape of your choosing. So the spark that set off this chain of creation was a simple thought that shaped the background energy of clay, to put it in biblical terms.

So what links all of these creations to each other, was it simply one background word, one creator somewhere far hidden that set it all in motion and decided how gravity will work, how all the forces of nature will work, how they can be bent, how they can be broken, how they can be used. Or is it us, is it our thought, is it the self realizing machine, the world exists because we exists and we exists because the world exists. Information, wishes, electricity and even matter travel backwards in time. What if when I stand up and flex and look back in time and scream. Let there be light! That thought, that scream, that energy travels on the winds of time back to the very moment the universe was born and plays some part. Moments later and moments sooner someone who lives next to me would scream. Let there be darkness! That thought as well, that scream, would travel back in time and disrupt the process, setting off a chain of events that influences us both billions of years later. A chicken or the egg spanning billions of years!

So, back to the topic at hand, I don’t leave Finland because what my government did is inherently bad, I don’t refuse to do armed service because it is inherently bad, I refuse to do armed service because the Finnish armed forces no longer serve our country’s interests and they no longer serve my interests. I refuse to stand by a ruling that is unjust because it doesn’t serve the interests of Finland or my own to let an unjust ruling become the norm.

So, now that I’ve got that written down its time to get back to the topic of the book, mistakes I made on the road homeward. I don’t know if I’ll ever get home, if I’ll ever find the peace I’m looking for, probably not but I should at least try. So this is a collection of my worst mistakes, my worst blunders and how I came to make them and how I got a way out of them, from many different perspectives.

Let’s start off with the big one. Love

Mistake Numero Uno; Love!

Or how you are and always will be unworthy of love.

Or at least the perception that you will be, since that is what the world is, simple perceptions of something that is not in the perception but what the perception hopes to point to. So, the truth is you are and you always will be unworthy of love, simply because love isn’t earned, love is given. You don’t give love to those who deserve it through actions, you simply give love. You can never be worthy of love because love as it is, is universal and pure and to live a human life is never to be universal and never to be pure, there are only varying degrees of impurity and varying degrees of filth. So stop trying to earn love, stop trying to strive to become something you can never become. Accept that all human life will eventually fail and all human endeavors will eventually come to an end when the stars and all of existence grows cold and dead. At best you can stem the tide for a few years, to create something more, to hope that your actions will speak well of you when you are no longer around. Trying to earn love and trying to strive to actually accomplish something is akin to trying to earn all the money in the world. You can never accomplish it as the moment you have all the money it become worthless, people invent another form of money and what you hold will have no meaning and no value. So don’t strive to be perfect to earn love, accept love when it is given, love when you wish to give it and stop trying to be perfect because you’ll never be.

This is one of those things I would tattoo on my eyelids if I could. “You are unworthy of love” to stop fooling myself that I could possibly ever earn love and accept that love is given, not earned. But all that true nonsense aside. True because it happens to be true and nonsense because even if it is true it still makes little sense. Fact of the matter remains that all of us, through the virtue of reincarnation are the worst scum in existence, we are all rapists, murderers, pedophiles, serial killers. There isn’t one of us that is above any other of us and as soon as we forget that and start to think that I am worthy of divine love, earthly love or even the base love of good food and they are not is the moment we are judged. It is the proverbial black hole calling the kettle black. The reason earthly love, the love between people is judgmental is because there is death. If death did not exists then we would all be equal in our spirit and eventually nothing would differ from one another, for creation and for judgment and love to exist there must be death and there must be separation. What this changes for love is simple, universal love and the love of the divine, the love of all that is can never judge simply because we are all the same, a murder in this life can be mother Theresa in another. God knows this and so God does not judge, God gave judgment to us so we could judge as we see fit, gave us the power of good and evil, so we can decide for ourselves what we love. While it is impossible to ever earn love in the universal sense from the divine source, it is possible to act in accordance with other peoples desires and have them reward you. That may not be the same as the universal love but in a world of relatives, in a world where all life is truly relative and nothing has any real substance everything is relative, even love. So love is never earned in the grand sense but it can be earned from others for acting in accordance with what they want. So to get the physical relative love what one must do is not try to seek some higher universal purpose to life simply because there is none, there truly is no meaning to life, but to seek what the other person desires and act in accordance with that.

In that goal lies the real mistake I made, I always assumed that what people want is to be happy and to do happy things and all things of that nature. I painfully learned that this is not the case. People do not wish to be happy, people do not wish to be content, what people wish for is to be beaten around emotionally and physically. But more than anything else, people wish to feel superior. Being married to an abusive partner fills that desire, so does working for some illusionary position in an illusionary company on an illusionary existence, it makes one feel superior to those who work less. Our existence amounts to a contest to feel superior to others, even in a society designed to eliminate the desire to compete and the desire to feel superior will breed little more than a competition on who feels the least superior. People will compete in anything they can, especially love. So the mistake I made here is making myself readily available emotionally, assuming that people want happiness and offering to give them happiness. This lead me to a great many bumps and bruises in life. When I saw into the minds of people I realized that the key to receiving earthly love is to be difficult, to be distant and to be hard to get. I got more action than I wanted to, it didn’t make my life any easier but now I understood how to get what I wanted. So I was equally as lost as the people on the street, the people who wanted to feel superior. After I got what I thought I wanted I was still unhappy, still lost, getting the illusionary price of an illusionary love was still not enough, so the next logical question was what I really want since this illusion was clearly not it.

This has always been the center of my spiritual quest, love. I could stop, click my boots twice and I would be home faster than I could say Kansas, in home in heaven. But I don’t want to and I don’t do it so there must be something here I want.

The archangel and the girl in the mountains

I sit here once more, in front of my computer with thoughts running in my head, am I truly back here, back in the state of nirvana, back in the state of buddhahood. To even say it gives me shivers, have I truly fallen so far from knowing what is proper that I might say I’m in a state of Buddhahood? That I’ve once attained what can’t be described. Yet my mind comforts me with what the great once have said before me, the wisdom of others fills my mind and whispers to me things I know to be true. That it would be the height of arrogance to say I am anything but what I am simply because to accept a gift I am given would offend those I mean to help. That I would be so tied to the world and the people in it that I could not dare to be myself out of fear that they would be offended, that what others think matters to me more than what I know to be true. It would be like Siddhartha abandoning his quest for Buddhahood when he was called a failure by his ascetic brothers, had he chosen to value illusionary bonds over his goal of Buddhahood he would have surrendered and never sat under the bodhi tree. To forsake what I know to be true simply to fulfill what others desire of me to do. Am I truly ready for this I wonder, am I truly ready for the steps I need to take if I finally surrender to the realization that I’ve reached buddhahood again. All the pain and all the emotions in my life have been set in motion by me and I can see how I did this, I did it when I was in this state the last time, I carefully chose my words an set in motion a chain of events which lead me here. Truly I must accept that it all returns back onto me, when mere weeks ago I would have cursed the world for giving me what I asked for now I feel differently, I am in state of Buddhahood. Yet even when I say those words I can feel my stomach turning, I can feel my fear, my sadness all my feelings crying to me; “Let others do it, let others lead, don’t stand up, don’t act, don’t help, you know it will hurt, you know how much it will hurt, some weeks back you called to us in pain, you asked us to end it and now you wish to do it again, you wish to start it again.” I know how much power words have and how many ripples on the sea of souls will expand if I truly take this step. There is no going back, there is never the possibility to go back, only to stop going or to go forward and eventually we all go forward.

I would trade all of this, I would trade all of what I have attained for a chance to simply lie in the grass, to lie next to someone I love and look at the clouds as they dance in the sky. Yet that is not my path that is not what I have chosen to do. Sometimes the desire to go home, the desire to go back to where it all began and simply lie still for an eternity overwhelms me and I forget why I am here. In time I must go through it again to continue my work but that time is not now. To have a pupil, to show someone the way you must be on their level, it is of little use to be so high no one can see you, the real teacher is exactly where others are, not above not below. When the pupil builds a mountain of repressed emotions so they may look down on others when they try to reach heaven you must build a mountain of your own repressed emotions. Sometimes the pupil must struggle to reach the master, sometimes the master truly must be on the mountaintop simply because that is where the pupil thinks he should be. It is equally true that sometimes the master must be in the gutter, must be the worst drunk, the worst addict, the worst pedophile to teach us the highest things, to teach us sometimes the master must do this. But this is so simply because the master must be like a mist around the student, never hindering their vision but always gently guiding. If the student falls into the ocean the mist must follow. To clear a vision is to allow one to see. This is why you must, as a teacher, be ready to do what is asked of you. I have enough scars on my heart, soul and body to prove that I’ve been down in the thorn bushes with the addicts, the drunks and the pedophiles. So, in the end, I would not trade all of this away for anything, I have had my greatest wishes within reach, all I needed to do was reach out my hand and I would have had all I wanted to and this is when I always realize that I am already doing what I most want to do. Many masters forget why it is necessary to be high, they meditate and remove themselves from the community they are meant to help because this is what Buddha or Christ did so many years ago and so this is what they do now, they don’t realize that they didn’t do it because the action itself was important, they did it because that is what the students wanted, they wanted Buddha to be the way he was, he is and was the precious wish fulfilling jewel. The wish you have when you go to him is what he will give you, you ask him for help and he will help you in what you ask. Same is true for Christ, he gave to his followers and the people he met only what they asked of him and no more. When you as a teacher forget that the student is not there to help you but you are there to help the student you lose your way and if you are not careful you will not find it again this lifetime. When the Buddhist monks in Tibet forgot that the country was not there to maintain them, but that they were there to maintain the country they invited the karma of a Chinese invasion. Truly it is painful to watch as the Tibetan exiles still yearn for a country they know they can not have, to return to a time they can not return to. I would carefully remind Tibetans that just as Siddhartha had to leave his palace to find his way so must you leave your home to find your way. In time you will return to your home but it will not be before you have found your way in the world.

I was just in the mountains with a pupil of mine, a young girl no older than I when first attained this state and was aware of it. We were not in mountains of earth and stone but in mountains of repressed emotions, in mountains of our own making. For so long she had pushed down everything she could not deal with and try to reach higher and higher. After a while all that was left of her was her soul and her heart and she was starting to cut those into small pieces too and push them down as well so she could try to reach the heaven she always sought. She would have reached it but she would have rejected it, she would no longer be able to live in heaven because that mountain of repressed emotions would contain all she ever was and when you have no more dreams you can’t be in a place that fulfills your dreams. You would find only nothingness. When you discard your emotions and your feelings to be lighter you become like a hot air balloon, with nothing but a sack of skin to protect the balloon that is where your heart used to be and everything that touches you will be a danger to you. You can’t let anything close because to hug you too tight would be to release the air and you would collapse like an empty bag onto yourself. You must always guard yourself more and more closely because the more of yourself you abandon the bigger the bag becomes and more dangerous it becomes for someone to be close to you. After a while nothing more remains than skin and armor, a heavy armor to protect the balloon that is your skin and eventually you start to sink as the armor becomes heavier and heavier and you have nothing left of yourself to throw away. The way out of this is to slowly bring back inside all the things you threw away, to stop trying to climb, sit down and start shifting through the mountain you were walking on. This is where the teacher must remember, to have gone through what the pupil is now going through, to remember what it was like and to remember what is important. To show the student that despite all the piles of emotions they were walking on side by side it is easy to come down again, the mountain can be cleared away in a fraction of a second if the will is there. To always show that it is possible, if the student strives to do it they will liberate themselves and no longer need a guardian, no longer need a teacher.

So there I was, mere days ago, on the mountaintop of repressed emotions side by side with my student, who for the first time in a long time stopped and looked in her heart, looked at all the things she had thrown away, turned around and look at the path she had taken. She had always done as was asked of her in the spirit, always been there to help others and been there to do the bidding of others, so I reached a time when I had to leave her to clear out the mountain herself, I poked a hole in her bubble and handed her a shovel and a bucket to clear it all out and left. The most difficult part about the state and path I am on is that I must always leave in the end.

The other part of the name for this chapter, the archangel, is one of my forms, just as it is one of your forms. Simply because I choose to hold true to that form in my life does not mean I am any higher than you. If you react with anger to someone saying this then study your feeling, why would it make you angry? Why does it make you angry that a normal man can become Buddha or an Archangel or anything he chooses to be. Siddhartha was a spoiled prince with no knowledge of the world until he was 29 and saw the world for what it was for the first time. Jesus was nothing more than the son of a carpenter born to a insignificant town in a poor part of the world yet he rose to great things, perhaps not the son of god, perhaps son of god but the lesson is the same non the less, never judge someone based simply on what you think they are. In your heart you should always remember that it all comes down to you, all the strands of destiny, all the Buddha’s and Christ’s and the entirety of existence is at your fingertips begging for you to play with it, so perhaps I, the old archangel, will stay here for one more show, for one last hurrah.

The maiden, the tramp and the young man

When you live in the past you are always struggling to get over the stuff that happened long ago. When you live in the future you are always struggling to get a grasp of the things in your life because you always aim too far. I use my love, I use the people I fell for in my past as a way to avoid my future and I use my future as a way to avoid the present moment and I use the present moment to avoid everything else. Instead of living in the time I am meant to, the future to the future the present to the present and the past to the past I am stuck. I use my mind and my energy in a way that is non supportive of what I truly wish because I use it all to avoid that which I do not wish to face. Most people go through the same stages when they are born and grow up, they are not who they wish to be because for some reason or another they choose its not good for them. Perhaps their parents tell them it is not the way to be or perhaps the stress of actually living here is too much and they flee, they can go up, they can go down, left, right, back, forward inward and outward to avoid the center of their being because to be in the center is to be where it all resides, where all the pain you have pushed away for your entire life is. So we spend our energy and our focus on avoiding that which gives us pain, even after the pain is long gone we still avoid it. It is like a broken bone that never heals because it never gets the blood and the nutrients it needs. We are like that, we refuse to give nutrients and we refuse to love the parts of ourselves that are hurt because to do so would make us relive the experience that hurt so much in the first place. Better to be away than to be hurt, better to be fat and hate ourselves than to take another chance at love and do what makes us feel better, better to hold up an armor that will never break lest we feel the imagined sting of love. That is how we live our lives from moment to moment, keeping up walls and barriers to keep things out and to keep things in and we wonder why we don’t have telepathy and we wonder why we slowly die inside day after day. It is no surprise that societies that are more developed and require more complex systems of operating also have a very high degree of depression and other mental problems. It comes mostly from the mixed signals we receive because our society truly requires an overhaul to make it in line with what we desire.

To reform our society we need to reform ourselves, every moment of our lives we decide what kind of society we desire to live in and every moment we are living in a state that is not in accordance with what we want, in a state of disease we will make the wrong choice. We will sign up for wars that we know in our heart are wrong, we will work in a system we know in our heart is wrong, we will commit to relationships that we know in our heart are wrong. Yet we keep doing this, from day to day and night to night month after month until the years finally stack up and we let out our last dying breath. Of course the soul doesn’t mind, the soul never minds, we could be plunged into the depths of the most carnal hate and butchery imaginable and the soul would only rejoice, the soul will always rejoice because it knows nothing but joy for it is nothing but the most perfect joy and the most perfect love. So it is not a matter of soul or a matter of God’s desire, it is a matter of our own desire, what do we want our short moment on earth to say? If we want it to say what our existence screams for us to say then we must start to reform our minds and face our inner fears before we start to face our external fears. Before we commit to changing our world we must be at peace with our self regardless of what happens outside. We must be able to live with our actions when we go wrong and to live with our pride when we go right and that is in the long run the true challenge, to reform society is easy, to give birth to the perfect system is easy, what is difficult is maintaining it when all our desires mix and create a mixture that can only lead to war and suffering.

I cant promise that we will succeed, I cant promise that there will be any kind of utopia, ever, what I can promise you that when you go to bed at night and wake up in the morning, if you follow what your heart tells you and are at peace with yourself you will never know fear and you will never know death. To touch the end of your life with no fear in your heart is to know eternal peace, if life truly ends the moment you die then is there no better legacy than to go out with no fear in your heart and know you did all you could to fulfill what you want to do. If there is life after death then what ever is out there fear will not help you, the only thing that will help you is to be at peace with yourself and if you truly accomplish that then no matter where you are you will always no peace, be it the highest heaven or the deepest pit of hell. I am not saying that belief in God and hell is wrong, I am saying however that if in your heart you believe you must do good things and believe in the Bible or Koran or any other holy book then act in accordance with that, if you believe something else then act in accordance with that. Follow your heart and always follow what love and the kind path tells you.

When you open your mind to your heart you will see things in such unimaginable beauty that you will cry for the time in your life you spent in the dark. Before you take that step if you only seek pleasure I should say that you will also see all the horror of the world in such unimaginable shape that you will shrink away in disgust. It takes a great man to be able to stand up to all the worst people can throw at you day after day, it takes a truly epic man to go out looking for more. What separates the saints and the holy men from everyone else is not breeding, holy or otherwise, status, age, gender, or anything like that, what separates them from the rest of humanity is their ability to go back in after they can stand up again and ask for more. The reason why spirits like Jesus are so famous and so good at what they do is not because long ago they did something great and we still remember that, it is because even now they still continue to do great things, pray and you shall receive, despite the almost 2000 years of persecution and blood spilled by Catholics, Orthodox, Protestant and all of the subgroups of Christianity, Christ still answers. Despite all the thousands of years Christians have spent defaming Christ he still answers their prayers. In the same vain, despite the fact that Buddhists have forgotten all Buddha said and are trying to do something as incredibly silly from the standpoint of Buddhism as building a huge statue plated with gold and huge temples for a man who himself said should never be worshipped he will still come and help you and hold your hand on your road to where he sits. But I digress here, the point I wished to convey was that follow your heart and you will not need a cathedral to worship in, you will not need to follow a Buddha for you will become a Buddha. Eat when you are hungry, sleep when you are tired.

I feel I’m simply circling around the same topics I have covered so often, hate, love, religion, how to be enlightened, how to no be enlightened, how not to die in a bathtub. So let us return to a more mundane topic, to what I set out on this book for originally. To the mistakes I made, or perhaps more closely, the regrets I have. I don’t so much regret what I’ve done as I regret or perhaps fear growing old. I have this romantic notion of meeting a girl and falling in love. Doing things together for the first time, going to the first date for the first time, the first movie, the first kiss and all that, I’ve done all those things so many times they no longer mean a damn thing, I could go on a date with a 33 year old burly serial killer named Ted and it would feel the same. It’s not that people have changed, its that I changed, I thought that love would be enough, to love another person would be enough to bring them to me or bring me to them and I would be happy, yet all the time I tried to convince myself I was in love I was simply looking to fill something I lacked in my life that they could never fill, I was simply looking to be content with who I am and in the process I destroyed what could have and perhaps should have been the most important thing in my life, falling in love. I did it in my hurry to find my peace outside, to find the peace outside that I could never find inside. So now I find myself stuck, I still pine for the feeling of love I held when I was young and then curse at myself for never finding love when in reality I’ve never looked for love, I’ve looked for acceptance and peace, both of which are necessary for love but they are not love. I hate the women and girls in my life but in reality it is not them I hate, I hate myself for pushing myself to go through this again and again, time after time and perhaps, lifetime after lifetime. I Want out of it all, I want out of the circle but once again in my haste I might overshoot and instead of leaving the circle I push myself into I might leave life altogether. So here I am, stuck, I fear that to let go of the circle I’ve been running in for what feels like an eternity would mean to die so I feel that to die is to let go of the circle but that is not necessarily true. To reproduce one must have sex but not all sex leads to reproduction. To leave the circle I must face my fear of death, my fear of letting go and that feels like a death yet it is not death. And to die I might not let go of anything for it would all simply remain with me for another lifetime where I would get to do it again.

I always fall for the tramp, the maiden, the perfect or the perfectly imperfect. To love someone like me and through that redeem myself. Even if I only fell for books or cars or butterflies it would all be the same. It seems to me that I always fall for that which is the certain way to bring out all out from within. The more I think about it the more clear it becomes, I fall for the once I know will fail not because I want to hurt myself or because they are mean. I fall for them because of the pain and disgust I feel inside. What I’m supposed to use naturally I use unnaturally, I use it in a way that brings out pain. A knife lodged in the chest will hurt most when one dances. That is in essence how I feel. I go for what I truly love yet in the process I will always bring out the pain within because as long as I don’t get it out I will always harbor it close enough that it is knocked loose and starts to wonder around my body every time I try to fall in love. So it is projecting, I attempt to love others when I carry out a fetus built of nothing but anger, shame, fear and pain and when that fails I blame them for it. Everything looks black when you wear shades. Everyone looks angry when your heart beats so fast you see nothing but red. How am I to love when all I feel is disgust and the stench of vomit when I’m touched, this is perhaps my burden to myself, to know how to love myself before I love others and to go through this again and again to show others it can be done. When I was a young boy I prayed not for happiness or money, I prayed for spirits who have problems to come to me and ask me for help and I will do my best. Am I then truly ready to forsake this path for a while and work on myself, to finally give time to myself to heal from 20 years of emotional trauma? Even as I ask that my mind floods with images and feelings of my youth, how happy I was, how content I was and how it all went wrong. I still have time to fix it all, I still have time.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

A study i proposed for psych class

A study on the effects of hands on healing [Therapeutic touch] on the growth of plants in a controlled environment versus control group and standard deviation

As proven by earlier studies [referenced at the end of the essay] hands on healing (Referred to as HH for the remainder of this essay, also goes by the name of Reiki, Chiqong, Therapeutic touch and a wide variety of other names) has an effect on the growth speed of cells as well as a moderate decrease in pain reported by patients. HH carries a heavy social and psychological burden in the scientific community because of its perceived status as a sham, hoax or a snake oil healing method. Despite strong evidence to the contrary this status has not changed in the eyes of a vocal part of the medical and psychological community. Most of the argument against HH rests on its perceived status as a placebo treatment regardless of its proven effectiveness far beyond what normal placebo treatments would indicate. To study the effect of HH in a controlled environment against a placebo group can be difficult as HH usually requires a close contact with the patient and under these conditions a sham healer used in the placebo control might be exposed and lower the accuracy of the results as patients would be aware of being in a placebo control. Thus the study I propose would work around this problem by working with plants instead of humans.

If HH is an effective way to boost health as is claimed then these effects should be same on all forms of living matter, human or animal and should act in a roughly similar manner. To study this in more detail I propose the following test regiment. A hired gardener who is unaware of the nature of the test plants 100 saplings of 3 different plants each for a total of 300 saplings. These plants will grow in identical conditions as far as possible in controlled closed greenhouses where all will receive an equal amount of nutrients and sunlight at the same time. These 300 will be divided into groups of 25 each assigned to one of the 3 groups. Group A consists of certified healers of at least 5 years of proven experience. Group B consists of sham healers who are skeptical to HH and have not studied it and are only instructed to mechanically follow the healers and copy their actions. Group C is the control group and will receive no healing. Each group of 25 plants in groups A and B will be designated to a single healer or sham healer and be under their energy care only to prevent a potentially harmful healer from influencing the results. Groups A, B and C will be placed in different greenhouses under identical conditions and placed under video surveillance to insure impartiality and to avoid what healers describe as an area healing where patients not directly healed still receive energy. By eliminating the healer’s knowledge of groups B and C an accidental healing can be avoided.

The healing itself is carried out over a period of 3 months and regular measurements of the plants in question are made once per week, measuring plant weight, height, growth stage. Healings are done 3 times a week and consist of distant healing given over a span of 1½ hours, Healers are allowed to sit in the same room as the plants but are not allowed to touch or come within 2 meters of the plants to prevent an increase in CO2 intake and the resulting growth from that. Sham healers only sit in the room with their plants for an identical amount of time as group A does.

The hypothesis is that plants in group A should grow more than plants in group B or C with group B potentially doing slightly better than group C. So in essence, the question I wish to answer or at least bring to the surface with this study is, in its simplicity, do plants grow faster when subjected to HH? If so, is the increase statistically significant? This study is simple in nature as the test subjects themselves are non human and by most definitions non sentient so ethics and in fact most of the fields of psychology itself are not relevant to this study. The nature of this study is similar to medical trials on animals before human tests are undertaken and as HH is popularly considered placebo the only real way to eliminate the possibility of placebo is to undertake the tests on primitive organisms not capable of producing a placebo reaction.

Healers used in this study will be collected from the greater Helsinki area based on the snowball action where one healer will contact others and so on until a desired group is achieved. Healers who drop out before the study is finished will have their plant group assigned to another healer.

Information gathering will be done purely by measuring the plant growth and comparing groups A-B-C and the subgroups of A and B per healer and comparing and analyzing the growth patterns versus the control group C and known growth speed for the plants in question from previous information. At the end of the test total plant mass in groups A-B-C will be compared against each other to see which has accumulated the most plant mass. Various other methods of analyzing plant health will be undertaken including chemical analysis to determine plant health.

There is a serious problem with the accuracy of the method of analysis in this study due to the large natural variance on plant growth speed and the difficulty of assessing the health of an individual plant. Accuracy of the test results will have a large dependence on the reliability of the gardener hired to take care of the plants and the reliability of the measurements of the plant size. Methods for an accurate analysis of plant conditions need to be devised before the test can proceed with satisfactory accuracy.

A step by step list of the stages in this experiment with explanations

Step one: Procure a sufficiently controlled greenhouse space that allows for the test to be completed, requires 3 separate spaces with some distance between them to try to work around what healers describe as healing presence. Distance is important for the same reason why it is important for 2 organisms subjected to different bacterial infections for research purposes to be kept separate. Failure in this step will either invalidate or seriously distort the test results resulting in a far higher probability of a false negative.

Step two: Set up the space and hire the gardener to take care of the plants. Both steps are important as the gardener is the only individual who should be allowed to handle the plants directly to prevent possibility fraud. Interview of the gardener using various psychological assessments for reliability as well as potential background check due to the importance of his status for the experiment and potential bias towards one or other belief might cause the individual to tamper with the plants. The healers will also be contacted at this stage and asked to come in for interviews where they will present their previous healing experience and present proof that they are an acclaimed healer. Proof of healing abilities will not be required due to the controversial nature of such proof, simply proof of status as an acclaimed healer.

Step three: Plant groups A, B and C each in their individual greenhouse and set up a video surveillance system to video the growth and to dispel potential claims of fraud by researchers. Assign group A and B to their respective healers and sham healers. Begin the testing and proceed to data collection.

Step four: Once all necessary data has been collected proceed to analyze it for a statistically significant variation. Dispose the plants and conclude the test phase of the trial.

Step Five: Once analysis has been completed present the results for peer review and to be questioned by the scientific community.

Potential application and follow-up testing

If the results are positive and there is a correlation between plant growth and healing then as an immediate follow-up I propose a study to see if a similar result can be obtained by subjecting various different tissue samples of humans, animals, moss and other living organisms to HH and measuring their growth rates. If there is a proven correlation between the test I proposed and any follow up tests then a field test in hospitals or medical centers would be a logical next step. Access to the general population and healthcare facilities would be crucial for any potential application and as such is beyond the scope of this proposal.

Analysis of faults and suggestions for improvement

While this research can potentially be groundbreaking for modern medical science it goes without saying that it could stand improvement. Due to the scarcity of resources for such a fringe study many of the steps I would like to take such as outdoor testing, crop yield studies under similar conditions, studies in more than one city/geographic area are impractical or would cost too much to feasible. The biggest potential problem for the test as it is now is the inability to verify the healer group as being legitimate other than by reputation which opens the study for serious problems. The biggest benefit from studying in plants instead of living organisms is the plants uniform or close to uniform DNA due to thousands of years of selective breeding, because of this any proven result can be quickly replicated and this test can be potentially used to prove or disprove a claimed healing ability. If the plants do indeed grow quicker under true healers than the control group there is also another potential use for this test. If we gather a group of common people from the streets and ask them to perform a similar test and then measure the plant growth rate and drop the low 80% of participants and ask the 20% to do the same again and we once again measure the results we could potentially develop a method of picking out natural healers from a crowd. Or in other words those who have undeveloped healing abilities. This could open up a potentially critical benefit for modern healthcare as hands on healers could simply be screened from the general population in school level testing and those with abilities could be offered a training regiment similar to how talented people in their own field have special schools.

But back again to the potential errors in this study. Any point where all the data depends on a single person or a single variable not itself measured, such as the gardener, plant seeds from a single location and so on, the accuracy of the test is seriously in question. Due to the nature of the energy under observation and debate in this study internal and external validity should be fairly high. Most healers study in a hectic real world situation and as such should already be highly competent in real world healing situations so while the study itself is done in a controlled situation simply to make measuring any change easier it should also be fairly easy to transport to a real world situation and thus vastly increase external validity. Internal validity can prove a bigger problem as dropout rate of healers and sham healers can increase to such a point that by the end of the study healers will be healing far more plants than by the start and as such the amount of energy one plant gets can decrease to a point where the validity drops or vanishes all together. The only efficient way to prevent this is to pay the healers and use all available methods to try to convince them to stay such as making the test situation a work assignment for them as healers and by that make leaving the study an unethical thing for them. However due to the ethical complications in this the only realistic way to increase the accuracy is to simply remove the plants where the healer has quit.

This would not be a problem for a quantative study if the group of healers used was sufficiently large but due to the difficulty of procuring healers and spaces required for such a large long term study even a minor fluctuation in the healer group can cause vast deviation over the long term. If the healing energy is present in everyone at all times and healers simply learn how to channel or focus it on a particular area then even the perceptions or beliefs of the testing personnel can alter the end results. To correct this potential fault would require extreme measures and render the test unethical, lobotomizing or drugging the scientists involved in studying the results would be impossible, impractical and illegal. The only way to influence this variable is to simply ask the research staff to keep an open mind and try to avoid making any kinds of decisions in their mind and to try to not focus on any expected results.

Because of the nature of the study and the fringe nature of the phenomena under study stricter control over the test needs to be carried out as opposed to an already accepted field of study. As the burden of proof lies on those who claim new things it requires meticulous effort and accuracy at all stages of the study. Extensive interviews and psychological profiles of all the research staff as well as surveillance of the test area to prevent tampering for or against a positive result would also be beneficial but once again outside of the financial possibilities.

Closing thoughts

Although I’m tempted to carry out this research myself as my post graduation doctoral thesis or under similar conditions. Due to my intensive study of HH the accuracy of the test might be corrupted by my own awareness of both groups and of the test conditions. This study for me is one of those studies I would find very difficult to do but would be very tempted to carry out some day. From my personal experience and testing I can safely say that HH works, the principle and conditions under which it works are still not certain to me. Therefore this study will be of interest to me even though I know HH works, mostly because it will be an interesting analysis on the extent of its function as well as the ability of healers in the general community.

References to similar studies:

PubMed database under Therapeutic touch produces 628 studies, reiki 493 studies, as well as a wide variety of other results for less known methods and variations of their spellings. I’ve listed some of the studies above for the interested researcher.

Militarism and National Defence [Not Finished]

Thoughts of the conscientious objector Aki Greus on militarism, armed forces, crisis management and proper organization of the Finnish Armed Forces.

I know I’m just a civilian and a conscientious objector and as such have no right to question the wisdom of the present military machine of Finland. The all encompassing wisdom of spending hundreds of millions of dollars on buying armaments that in a real war against Russia would be next to useless. When I say that and voice my opposition to the present military architecture I am often greeted with the same three responses. Either I don’t know the situation as I have not been in the army, I advocate disarming Finland completely or that the present military leadership knows what’s best.

I absolutely do not advocate complete disarmament of Finland, I only advocate a more reasonable level of spending and readiness. We have to face the fact that in modern warfare the attacker has a massive superiority in the early days of war while the defender has an advantage in close quarters combat. I’m going to approach the military problem from the traditional setting of Finland versus Russia. It is clear that from an equipment standpoint Finland has no reasonable comparison with Russia. A country as small Finland does not have the industrial or resource base to establish the same level of military machine as Russia has. The very fact that Russia is a nuclear superpower with one of the largest nuclear weapons stockpiles in the world is a good indication of the kind of military might Finland could be up against and against such a power a level playing field would be impossible to establish or maintain for any meaningful time. For the sake of argument I’ll rule out the use of nuclear weapons or other WMD’s aimed at civilians simply because if Russia is willing to engage Finland with nuclear weapons any defensive preparations Finland undertakes are moot anyway. I’m also going to assume that any Russian declaration of war would elicit a Europe wide war that to keep this thought process going would tie down a substantial portion of Russian military and somewhat limit their military options. It is clear that a wide scale 2nd world war style invasion is not going to happen in a 21st century world unless preceded by a long preparatory stage beginning either with an act of war or by an obvious act of troop movement which would cause Finland to mobilize. The start of the war would have Finland mobilized fully as well as Russia in a position to strike against Finland.

First task of an invading army as made obvious by every minor and major war in the past 60 years is to gain air superiority, Finland’s only reasonable air defence are our fighter jets which by modern military standards are outdated and out gunned. In many cases we would also face an enemy that has had years of training in ground warfare against a well motivated guerrilla army and an air force that maintains enough state-of-the-art airpower to deter any potential adversary from attacking. This would put our air force in a situation where it would face 10:1 odds against a superpower 20-30 years ahead of us in technology which has fought in countless minor wars over the past 60 years. Even if our air force by some twist of fate manages to keep its planes from being shot down the airfields they launched from will be destroyed by long range missile barrages we have no hope of stopping. After our airplanes have expended their fuel they need to land and rearm. At which point the military intelligence will be able to easily and efficiently pinpoint their location on the ground as they land and destroy them from bombers outside our reach, effectively destroying the entire Finnish air force within a day of the onset of the war.

After Russia has destroyed our fighter cover the rest of our air defence is limited in its functionality and would not be able to do anything to high altitude bombardment. At which point they could destroy all civilian infrastructure at will as they have done in previous wars and prepare for any ground invasion for as long as they would require from a day to a few months. During that time any troop movement could be detected and intercepted as they would have to work under constantly diminishing safety. As large scale destruction of Finland’s civilian infrastructure begins civilian traffic will slowly grind to a halt and massive civilian casualties will begin to mount as modern bunker buster weapons would be used against the civilian population effectively making sheltered civilians prime picking for an invading army. After several weeks of near constant bombardment and civilian casualties approaching the 100.000 range, the supply and fighting ability of the Finnish army would quickly begin to deteriorate. An army marches on its belly and an army unsupplied is not an army. Any attempt to supply quarter of a million men in the field would be easy to detect and destroying bridges and roads and supply depots would not be a difficult task for an opponent who at that point would have uncontested aerial superiority. A few weeks after that the Finnish armed forces would be at a point where they have yet to fire more than a few shots but are suffering from horrible moral and worsening supply shortages. The desire to fight the enemy but lack of any meaningful way to do so as the enemy would not be inclined to make themselves visible would have an deleterious effect on the fighting morale, combined with the increasing news and rumour of all major cities in Finland being systematically reduced to little more than 19th century towns with no electricity, no running water, no fire department to speak of, no food transportation, no gas and nothing but a few AA guns and a popgun to defend against air raids from 10-15 miles high could prove devastating.

After about a month of this the enemy could stroll in at their leisure and occupy any target they so choose while the Finnish armed force would be able to put up at best, nominal resistance. When any major artillery or armoured vehicle movement would be immediately detected and destroyed the only method left would be small uncoordinated squads faced with up to a month of in the forest with low supplies against a well supplied and coordinated enemy with air superiority and vast long bombardment capability. This would be the first point in the war when the Finnish armed forces would get close contact with the enemy and have the ability to inflict damage on them but by this point most of our preparatory planning would have been for nothing and a vast majority of Finland’s military might would have been destroyed. After the initial stage of bombardment and war has concluded the only remnants of the Finnish armed forces would be small units separated from their proper chains of command due to the destruction of any communication networks as one of the first targets in an invasion. These small units would have to organize some form of guerrilla warfare against the now occupying Russian army in the hopes of causing as much damage as possible and driving the invading army back. This has however proven ineffective and vastly destructive to the civilian population as any invading army would certainly retaliate against the civilian population after any strike against their units, even if ordered not to do so. The civilian population which at this point would be unable to defend itself as they have neither the arms or the training to do so as most of the men capable of defending Finland would have either died in the first month of the war in the aerial bombardment or captured in the early stages of the occupation.

Finland would then be in a bad situation that simply keeps getting worse as days go by. The occupation would slowly turn into escalating guerrilla warfare and most of what remains of Finland’s infrastructure would be destroyed similarly to how every invading army in the history of the world has dealt with guerrilla warfare, by indiscriminate killings and destruction. After the weeks turn into months the occupying army would, depending on its goals in the war slowly begin to crush the resistance and start to turn Finland into what ever suited their interests best. Total Finnish casualties would be in the 500.000-1.000.000 range or more. And any realistic hope of pushing the Russian army out of Finland would have to be done either with massive EU/NATO backing or through decades of guerrilla warfare which would result in a Finland reduced to the dark ages in technological development facing a reconstruction effort that would take decades or more. The centralised system where all the water is supplied by one point, heat by another and electricity by a third one is extremely vulnerable. A single cruise missile against a power plant and the entire power grid shuts down. One shot at a water purification facility and everyone is without clean water. And we are not facing an enemy with one cruise missile or one bomber, we are facing an enemy that can launch a thousand cruise missiles and not even break a sweat. The only way we can realistically defend against an enemy that has such crushing superiority is not by trying to match them in a level playing field but by using the most force where they are the weakest.

The Alternative

The alternative I propose is cheaper, better able to maintain cohesion during war and more useful in peacetime. Our defence policy should be focused on small self contained units working with their own guidance to do maximum damage to any invader while taking minimum losses and causing no collateral damage to civilians. Towards this end I emphasise survivability of civilian population during wartime even if major infrastructure is destroyed. As a comparison I will use the Finnish Defence Force budget estimates against market rate estimates for the various items I would suggest we use. The Finnish military budget for 2007 is roughly 2 billion euros, of which roughly 50% are spent on wages for personnel. I will aim to maintain the 2 billion euros level and slowly reduce it over the next 20 years to its peacetime level.

To start off with Finland should sell all the military hardware that can’t be moved by hand in a hurry as they are too bulky and easily detected by satellites and various other methods of spying and too vulnerable to bombardment and air strikes. Such equipment would be either sold in the market or where such is not feasible would be returned to the seller as time and contracts permit. The money gained would be spent on modernizing squad equipment starting from the weapons and moving up towards individual armour and survival gear. As squad level organization permits the aim of the modernization would be to form squads of no more than 10 people who live in the same geographic area and would work as a war time unit that would be able to survive in their local environment without support from the community at large. The squad would also be expected to operate without orders from command and be able to survive in occupied territory while maintaining strike potential and unit cohesion. Towards that end optimal squad armament would be predominately light weapons, long distance weapons. Explosives would also be supplied. Basic operation of the squad would be loosely modelled after the various special force units in the world with a strong emphasis on guerrilla and harassment operations. Realistically not everyone presently serving in the Finnish Armed Forces would be capable of the type of service proposed here. Under this model they would be better suited for civilian crisis management while in service and would not be called for permanent service.

The present draft model would be completely reworked from the ground up so most of the resources would be utilized for civilian purposes such as crisis management. While a portion of the drafted workforce would not be asked to do any work everyone, both male and female would be called to service for a 3 month period during which they would be instructed in the various skills needed to survive in crisis situations. Teaching such skills in the present school environment would be extremely difficult due to the nature of the topics covered and the average age of school students. During the 3 month period everyone would be instructed in first aid to such a level that they could provide paramedic service if required to, they would also learn how to survive in the Finnish countryside and forage for food and shelter should it be required, proper methods of cleaning contaminated water and any other wilderness survival methods, how to handle and operate a gun, various skills needed to socialize in a group environment and finally a quick but complete overview of the Finnish legislation and its effects on the normal person. In other words various skills required to know and navigate once way in society. This training would have the added benefit that since everyone would be required to spend the 3 months mostly away from previous family and societal ties it would be a practical learning experience in group coordination outside of what can be instructed in a class. After the 3 month learning period everyone would be present with a choice, they could either choose not to do more service at which point they would be given a certificate explaining how well they did in service and what they learned. If they were however willing to do more service they would be present with various alternatives, they could either work for the state in various manual labour tasks such as cleaning environmental damages, constructing highways or state facilities such as airports, they could also work in various low income jobs that would otherwise be difficult to fill such as paramedics, with the caveat that it has to be a state owned firm with no commercial interests, such as a hospital. Or finally they could decide to do military service. If they decide to do military service they would then be given another 3-6-9 months of training depending on their preference and at the end of which they could sign on as training personnel or they could move to the reserves and return to normal life. They would be given their war time equipment to be kept at home under proper guard or asked to keep an up to date address information available which would be used to deliver the weapons should the need arise. Home storage would be strongly recommended due to its advantage in potentially quick deployment.

The supposed citizen training side of the present military infrastructure could be taken out of the military’s hands and placed in the hands of a civilian organization which would oversee that the required training be undertaken. The other supposed use of the present military infrastructure, the crisis management, would also be placed where it properly belongs, to a crisis management agency working side by side with the military. This would leave the military with its one real goal, national defence. The practical effects of this system on Finland’s military capability is that a practical strike against a guerrilla force such as the one described here is near impossible and will elicit massive civilian casualties while doing little damage to the combat ability of the unit. The proposed system would also increase the education and practical skills of all Finns, leading to a point where an appreciation for nature as well as human life can be increased due to the required nature survival and first aid skills. On a societal level outside of the scope of the individual this system would also encourage de-centralised power/water/food and strive to increase local power generation and local water production to maximise peacetime as well as war time performance of a modern society under stress. The recent water crisis in Nokia has proven beyond a doubt how vulnerable a modern western society is to even the smallest malfunctions, luckily there were few fatalities in the crisis. However it could have been a lot worse if no access to clean water was provided as well as the relatively quick medical response. The worst possibility is that as people in western societies have an already declining physical health a pandemic could arise from unclean water due to warfare and quickly incapacitate or kill a great many people. To avoid this and other already proven weaknesses in the Finland I propose giving government tax breaks to renewable locally generated power and water purification as well as local heating in winter. Although this would take a long time the benefits in peace time are apparent to any observer. A systematic breakdown of the power grid as happened in the US northeast some years ago caused vast damages in work slowdowns and lost data and trade, if even one such power outage can be avoided or ameliorated the economic benefits will outweigh the costs. To this end I propose a government tax break to alternative locally generated power such as solar, hydrothermal, wind and anything else that can be locally supplied for a competitive market price. I do not however advocate government subsidies, what I do advocate is a tax break for power generation and similar productions that match the required criteria of local production. The tax cut can be justified by its national security effect of providing Finland with a viable method of environmental home power instead of imported power from either Russia or mid-east.

Essay on psychopathy for school

Psychopathy and society, a short essay

By Aki Greus

Helsinki Open University

Persoonallisuuspsykologia I

Definition of Psychopathy

For the sake of clarity, I will refer to Psychopathy instead of Antisocial Personality Disorder or Dissocial personality disorder. Psychopathy as I see it and as I believe is commonly seen is different from APD or DPD despite the stance of the American Psychiatric Association [1]. What differentiates between Psychopathy and APD is that essentially Psychopathy is caused by a lack of empathy for others that does not necessarily cause destructive or illegal activity. I believe that APD can only successfully diagnose a portion of psychopaths and even then clumps together a great deal of other problems alongside psychopaths. The difficulty with diagnosing Psychopathy is the same as with diagnosing any psychological illness where the patient has no desire to be diagnosed. While we are relying essentially on statements by the patient as well as past records of activity it is easy to confuse various different disorders with one another. While it is true that diagnosis of Psychopathy does rely on tests of varying degree of accuracy, while these tests are publicly available there is nothing to stop the test subject from reading the tests and their proper answers and thus learn how to fool the tests. Due to the nature of open society and the nature of the psychopathic behavior which seeks to hide deviant behavior and conform to societal norms as best they can for as long as they can without truly understanding the nature of society it is possible for psychopaths to read all they can find on their own personality in an effort to increase they chance of hiding. Which is why publishing the results of studies as is necessary in an open society can be counterproductive [2]. There is nothing stopping a potential serial killer with knowledge of the testing procedure to learn how to lie and fake it as they have learned to fool the community they live in. The situation is essentially the same as with publishing police or government procedures regarding crimes or emergencies which can lead to serious problems as criminals know how the police will behave and can plan accordingly. This is already obvious in the crime streak in south Sweden or in the more distant past during the era of prohibition in Chicago. When criminal knew how the police planned to catch them they were able to form good counter measures and avoid capture for a long time. Thus the worst case scenario is that as new methods of diagnosing psychopathy are found the methods themselves become extremely quickly outdated as ways to fool them are invented.

So the problem is not with diagnosing psychopaths who commit crimes and are caught. The problem is with diagnosing psychopaths who have yet to commit any crime that will warrant enough police attention that they will be caught. If we compare the Cleckley's list for Psychopathy [3] with the DSM list for ASPD [4] or Hare's items [5] it will immediately be clear that Hare and Cleckley are talking of a disorder that differs greatly from the ASPD as described by the DSM list. It is stated in the ASPD list that since things such as lack of remorse are difficult to assess in a patient that is adept at lying they were excluded from the list for ASPD. Perhaps the greatest difference between ASPD and Psychopathy is the lack of interest in the internal mindset of a psychopath by the ASPD diagnosis criteria, focusing instead of purely external factors such as criminal history and external actions. This certainly makes diagnosis of psychopathy easier but it also increases the probability of diagnosing various other behavioral problems as ASPD and no longer focusing exclusively on psychopathy itself. The same is true for the ICD-10 diagnosis criteria for psychopathy, known in this list as Dissocial Personality Disorder or DPD. The problem with these differing diagnostic criteria is that, as stated in the wikipedia article regarding psychopathy: “A sample research finding is that between 50% and 80% of prisoners in England and Wales meet the diagnostic criteria of dissocial personality disorder, but only 15% would be predicted to be psychopathic as measured by the PCL-R.” Which leads back to the initial problem with psychopathy, the glibness, ability to lie, no remorse and no empathy make a reliable diagnostic criteria that relies mostly on past actions and at best half lies by the patient themselves will be exceptionally inaccurate.

I lack the medical expertise, funding and the research facilities to accurately study psychopathy and associated behavior patterns, so it is safe to say that I cannot possibly verify the claims of brain activity difference between psychopaths and non psychopathic criminals as described by various medical sources [6][6.1]. Perhaps most disturbing is the reported increase in the rate of criminal behavior by psychopaths after therapeutic work is done on them [7]. Psychopaths also have a markedly different reaction to stimuli when compared to non psychopathic population [8].

The behavior of psychopaths is so strikingly different that it is potentially cause for a restructuring of human society to avoid the increasing chances of psychopaths to pray on those with no psychopathic tendencies. As the world grows ever smaller and the chances for a single individual to cause harm to others increase exponentially, which leads me to the point of this article. It is obviously very difficult to diagnose psychopathy in humans as well as in animals. Due to their marked difference from non psychopathic humans psychopaths have been referred to as the other race or interspecies predators in popular culture as well as some less than reputable medical papers. The fact remains that there is little consensus in the scientific or popular culture as to what a psychopath really is. However, for the remainder of this essay I will refer to psychopaths as defined by Hare and Cleckley and not ASPD as defined by the APA.

Successful VS Unsuccessful psychopaths

The measure of success for any creature is divided into 3 subgroups, ability to survive, ability to pass on its genes and ability to adapt to new environments. Survival in the environment the creature is currently in is the most important characteristics for the short term. Ability to pass on its genes is the second most important characteristics as a great deal of the adaptive ability of a any species is dependant on its offspring and their ability genetic variances and the faster a lifecycle a species has the faster it will adapt to a new environment, thus an extremely fast lifecycle such as is present in bacteria will allow a species to outpace any environmental changes except for the cataclysmic sudden change. While the ability to pass on the genes, the ability to adapt to new environments and the ability to survive are linked they are not mutually inclusive. A species that is too adept at passing on its own genes at the expense of the environments ability to support it will quickly find itself heading for a population collapse as the environment turns unsuitable due to overuse. If we view the human species as an inherently competitive system, its own ecosphere if you will, we can start to see various interesting behavioral patterns that closely mimic that of the earth as a whole. If we split the human species into smaller subspecies divided those into smaller casts and groups and families and finally the individual, we receive a new look at what human interaction is really about.

Since the vast majority of individuals will always operate with the 3 basic ideas, eat, survive and reproduce. A more modern way of putting it, physical survival, reproduction either directly or indirectly and procuring food or things required for food. We can break down human behavior in the grand scale into a biosphere like behavior, with each subset of humanity providing a role comparable with something we would see in nature. Against this backdrop of neutral nature psychopathic behavior starts to make sense. In a system where the vast majority of people need to and do indeed work together for a common goal, be it gathering food or generating electricity a predator willing to go outside the rules has a huge market for opportunities. The very nature of society is such that group behavior for a common goal can not be enforced strongly enough that a motivated predator will be unable to take advantage of the situation. It is necessary for the function of a modern society to assume others are friendly or at worst neutral towards you, even walking down a street would become impossible if mutual neutral behavior could not be anticipated, not to even mention complex finances or sale of stocks or goods. So the very nature of society has to be neutral or society would start to collapse into smaller niches that no longer communicate with one another and the potential hunting ground for a predator would become smaller and an increased risk of capture and early death due to deviant behavior would increase. So, I propose then, that there is an imaginary tipping point in society, beyond which an increase in the number of predators would cause an adverse reaction and the ability of the biosphere to support the predators would decrease leading to a massive extinction of the predators. To put it in a more socio-psychological term, an increase in deviant illegal behavior by a separate distinguishable part of a larger group will lead to cure, expulsion or incarceration of the small group by the large group.

History is full of examples where a small group has been imprisoned, either justly or unjustly by a larger group because of perceived deviant behavior. Jews, Native Americans, Indians, Africans, Japanese Americans, Germans in the UK and various other groups too numerous to mention were all expelled from a larger group because of perceived danger or deviant behavior. In modern times when it is possible to diagnose brain disorders directly and say, this man is incapable of emotions, this man has the brain of a criminal the temptation to use the technology in mass screenings of the population is only held back by our devotion to freedom and liberty, both of which are arguably under attack by more and more stringent police measures from within and war from outside. So, where is the mathematical breaking point of the population, beyond which the acts of the predators become so outrageous that our love of liberty will lose to our love of hatred? If you can argue that a psychopath has a 95% chance of committing a crime could she be sentenced to jail as a pre-emptive measure simply because of probability? Of course it is easy to say that our justice system does not judge a person for a crime he has not committed but that is not entirely true. There are such crimes as conspiring to commit murder, planning to commit murder and with a recent court ruling there is now precedent for even talking about committing a crime. With the closure of the kotikemian foorumit website and now with the charges against Nikki, a Finnish blogger actively protesting the website blocking law which allows the Finnish police to block any website they deem fit without listing a reason with no channel for protests it is obvious that the mere thought of crime, or mere mention of crime has indeed become a crime [9]. The Finnish police do not see the inherent problem with charging a person with distributing materials when all he is doing is posting a list of websites which have already been blocked by the police and as such are inaccessible from Finland. So the crime is not that he is distributing materials, he is distributing a list of actions the police have done, which should on its own be legal in Finland. So clearly there is both theoretical and practical law and precedent for imprisonment for merely thinking of doing a crime. So can it not be argued that a person who is incapable of empathy and views others as little more than cockroaches [10] is constantly thinking of committing a crime?

If it is this easy to moralize the incarceration of psychopaths then I can only ask, how difficult would it be if there were 5% or even 10% psychopaths in a population instead of 0.5-2% as is currently claimed[11]. Would society collapse under the weight of so many predators or would it figure out a way to deal with it. Either way this is somewhat besides the issue at hand. As long as the number of psychopaths remains under the population tipping point then psychopaths have an easier time than non psychopaths to succeed as non psychopaths are cumbered by emotions that assist them in functioning in a group while psychopaths have no such burden and are indeed free to roam as they see fit. If we view the actions of a psychopath from a purely selfish reproductive standpoint what they do is smart for them, they receive a great deal of potential mates and are free to pick the ones they want because non psychopathic humans are for the most part just as unable to view the mind of a psychopath as they are the mind of a non psychopath, in the words of a prison psychiatrist, “It was like he is from another planet” [12]. So, from the 3 ways to define success a psychopath who does not get caught and does not kill their mates they are indeed very successful. Their behavior guarantees them mates, food and survival and thus a chance to pass on their genes to the next generation. It is no accident that our present societal structure has started to favor those without conscience and those without care for others[13]. When one looks back in history to the different eras of humanity it becomes obvious that every now and then a sufficiently warped mind can lead humanity in a direction of its choosing before we wake up as a whole from its grasp. I hate to make sweeping statements but it is not a great stretch to compare most governments with clinical psychopaths. It is even less of a stretch to compare most multinational corporations with psychopaths.

After the 2nd world war many of the low echelon Nazi’s expressed disbelief at how easily they were taken into a system of organized psychopathy, a system that essentially was as far remove from humanity and what they thought they were doing as black is from white[14]. This disbelief at what they did and what was done to them as a people is strikingly similar to the disbelief exhibited by victim of psychopaths after the psychopaths mask of sanity is removed. It is quite common for people to say they had no idea the man next door was a serial killer or that the nice uncle who liked being with the kids was a serial pedophile[15]. A system of government which emphasizes ruthless competition for limited resources with any means available as long as one doesn’t get caught will inevitably lead to a situation where those who reach the top are the most ruthless players. It should come as no big surprise that this same system breeds politicians who express no remorse when their policies kill millions and joke about how as a child they liked to torture animals to death [16]. So then, what I see as the difference between a successful and an unsuccessful psychopath is that a successful psychopath has the ability to remain hidden or cover up his crimes well enough not to arouse suspicion in his potential victims. Indeed the history of the western society seems filled with wonderful case examples of psychopaths and their collected crimes, from Adolf Hitler to Stalin to Emperor Nero and so on. It is pointless to try to diagnose someone who lived a thousand years ago but studying the actions of long dead people has always been a hallmark of history and a hallmark of psychology, from the names like Oedipus complex to the still present trend of naming everything in Latin. To study psychopathy is to study history as history is filled with very clear examples of psychopathic behavior that by present day moral terms would be repugnant.

If the present day society, as I believe it to be, is very favorable to the psychopaths at the expense of everyone else, I must ask how this society came into existence. Did the present societal structure form on its own and then slowly turn into one that let psychopaths come into power or did psychopaths indeed form the societal structure. To answer this it is necessary to study other species and their hierarchy and society. While it is obvious that the hierarchy of a primate or an ant is nowhere near as sophisticated as that of humans they are still a very valuable source of information. There seems to be two general styles of society in existence in the animal world. There are of course more than two styles but they generally fall under the 2 prime groups, those that are ruled jointly and those that are ruled by a single individual. Those ruled by a single individual are generally careless with a single life and are predatorial in nature, where every member has to fight or cajole other members into supporting them in the power struggles, and failure to survive this power struggle can lead to quick annihilation of the individual as survival depends on the ability to fight. The other type of society is characterized by high emphasis on individual life and a high emphasis on children and the health of the entire pack as opposed to simply care for the leader. It does not take a great deal of thought to find both these basic structures on a great many animal societies, ranging from the Ant’s to the migratory birds or butterflies. So there are clearly different kinds of animal societies, some value the life of one individual over all others and some value all individuals roughly equally. There are even cases of rape [17], murder [18], and various other supposedly human behaviors evident in animals. What separates humans from animals in this context is that humans have a great deal of different societal structures while most animals have one or at best a few different societal structures. As an example of different societal structures in the same non human species is from several monkey species that have different societies in human encroached jungles than in jungles with no human presence [19]. Evidence would indicate that the societal differences between the two previously mentioned monkey societies is so drastic that one group is dominated by violence and what we would easily term Machiavellian behavior with complex political connections and complex political structures between the various families and bloodlines of monkeys, while the other group lives in an evidently peaceful setting where violence appears to be rare [20].

It is a common understanding that violent behavior and psychopathic behavior, even though violent behavior is not always psychopathic behavior can be caused by social relations and potentially even some deep traumas, thus the name sociopath. There is a fundamental disagreement on the wording used to describe psychopathy as indicated before. Psychopathy, Sociopathy, ASD, DPD have all been used to describe, with varying accuracy, the same psychological makeup. So the difference in animal behavior based on how humans have interacted with them leads to one possible explanation for the psychological condition I refer to as psychopathy. It is potentially possible that it can be promoted if not outright caused by deep enough social traumas. So is it possible that psychopathy is similar to schizophrenia, the underlying cause can be neurological but the trigger can be social interactions, if not in all cases then at least a significant minority of cases. Before I proceed to the next topic I would like to point out that even the most abhorrent behavior makes sense to the person committing it. In my admittedly short stay on earth I’ve yet to see a madman or a sane man who would seriously admit that their behavior is not what they want to do and keep doing it. Most behavior is a way of avoiding an imagined or real danger and as such behavioral therapy can reduce or eliminate most mental disorders. However, this depends on the persons desire to change or confront their fears and as such psychopathy is theoretically either incurable or prohibitively difficult to cure as the person has no desire to change. From the standpoint of a person who suffers from OCD they have a problem and they want to change or rid themselves of the problem, even if it takes them a long time they at least have a chance. From the standpoint of survival and from the standpoint of success a psychopath is heavily in control of their lives even if they lack some of the higher emotional abilities that non psychopaths have. Higher and more developed is not necessarily always a good thing, a great many highly developed life forms have perished in the course of time while the amoeba still survives.

Biological VS Societal

To return to the point I made earlier, is psychopathy biological or societal, nature or nurture if you will. To answer that question with any accuracy I feel we must step outside the normal scope of psychology and biology and look at human society as a large scale organism onto itself as I stated earlier. To understand biology and history we must take into account the fact that all organisms are inherently selfish, granted it is possible to be selfless and act to benefit others if enough willpower is used, on the basic level however almost all actions are likely to be motivated either directly or indirectly by selfishness. So observing the actions of psychopath we must for a moment set aside our own mask of sanity and try to put on the mask of insanity. Perhaps a bit too poetic but as the psychologist I quoted earlier said, they are like from another planet so setting aside the mask of sanity the mask of humanity and putting on the mask of insanity the mask of the beast is an apt metaphor. Viewing the world from behind the goggles of the predator the world is divided squarely into 2 types of people, pray and stronger predators. As stated by a convicted criminal who also scored very highly on the psychopathy checklist revised [21], doing it is just so easy. As repugnant as the behavior of psychopaths is to non psychopaths to the psychopaths themselves there is nothing wrong, people are so deserving of what the psychopath does that it is the victims who are at fault, they were the ones who presented the psychopath with such a good opportunity, they were the ones who needed a lesson. To return to the point of Nature V Nurture, I might be so bold as to argue that psychopathy is the logical and proper behavior for those who exhibit it, they drive the wheel of evolution forward by their actions, at least as far as their DNA is concerned. If we must ask is psychopathy the proper way to proceed we need to hold a mirror to our own society and ask if war is the proper way to proceed. If it is proper to cause 2 billion people to live in near constant danger of dying from either hunger, thirst, or easily preventable disease and let the top 0.0000005% of humanity hold so much money that most of the problems relating to poverty could be solved if that money was used on humanitarian work[22]. So before we use our moral and judge the psychopaths we should keep the goggles of psychopathy on for a while longer. Instead of focusing only on the psychopaths who make their presence known by their actions should we not also focus on the actions of non psychopathic people who behave in a psychopathic fashion. It is often easy to set our sight on a single societal group, be it the Jews, Germans, Gays, Lesbians or Psychopaths and blame them for all our problems instead of looking in the mirror. It is certainly true that from a societal standpoint psychopaths cause a great deal of crime and a great many of the violent offences in particular. It is also equally true that it does not take a great deal of effort to save the lives of thousands of people, the fact that people so hate psychopaths can be partially explained by projection. It is easy to project our own failings and our own problems onto the psychopaths and use our internal guidelines to try to correct the behavior of another instead of simply removing the other from the societal context. Instead of a live and let live policy civilization exhibits a strong live and let die policy. The utter disregard that people have for the welfare of other people and the incredible lack of ethics that such thing as industrial animal farming shows is perhaps more telling of us than it is of the psychopaths. So is psychopathy an expression of the nature of humanity simply brought up for us to see and perhaps change our ways?

Viewing Psychopathy from a neurological standpoint it is clear that the brain of a psychopath is markedly different especially in the pre-frontal cortex from that of a non psychopathic human. However it is also clear that a person who is a dry drunk or a homosexual or even artistically talented has a markedly different brain. Does the brain arise as a result of the action or the action as a result of the brain, the age old question of predetermination versus freewill? There is definitely compelling evidence for both from a neurological standpoint, there are certain brain tests which would indicate that all actions are predetermined, the way the brain decides to press a button is quite striking. The areas of the brain responsible for the movement light up before parts of the brain responsible for the decision to move light up. So in essence the brain knows you are going to move your hand before you do [23]. There are a wide variety of potential explanations for this ranging from misunderstanding of the functions of the brain to time traveling electrons. For the present moment however the debate has not been answered conclusively and is unlikely to be any time soon. While the underlying biological differences between the brains of psychopaths and non psychopaths are clearly understood it is impossible to say if this is caused by nature or nurture. Long term stress exhibited by victims of sexual assault or sufferers from PTSD has shown to significantly alter the brain. As I said it is potentially true that psychopathy is caused by Nature or Nurture, both have a strong case to make and neither has been able to disprove the other. It is a point of strong speculation on how nature and nurture should be divided. It is clear that the DNA of the child is definitely an act of nature, but what genes are active and how the child acts can be both of nature and nurture. Any hormones that affect the child while in the womb can be attributed to nurture as the mental state of the pregnant mother can greatly affect the hormones and thus the mind of the child. While it is beyond the scope of this essay and beyond the scope of my knowledge and abilities to truly classify psychopathy into one or another category I can try to view it from an evolutionary standpoint.

As I stated earlier the actions of the psychopath makes sense from their point of view, equally the actions against psychopaths makes sense from non psychopathic point of view. As life is inherently a struggle between different forms of life even inside the same species it is obvious that most actions arising from this struggle are designed to further the survival of the self or those directly linked to the self. As such humanitarian aid is frowned upon by those with a narrow definition of self or whose interests are being threatened by aid to the poor. If once Business Empire depends on the ability to farm cotton or gather mineral from Africans at dismal wages and sell them for exuberant profits to their prospective markets or oil from economically and socially devastated countries that suddenly rises in value 15 times after it leaves the war zones and reaches the western markets. It is obvious that any attempt to raise the living quality of the areas needed to produce goods will meet stiff resistance even if the psychopathic mindset is not used. So the snakes in suits or psychopaths in office, is perhaps not the real problem, psychologically or otherwise. The real problem is the society that promotes and perhaps through subconscious actions even causes psychopathy. I hesitate to guess on the potential of millions upon millions of people suffering so the rich can have their private yachts on children. How the soul anathema as it is in western psychology might react to being born into a world with an organized system of suffering to feed it, would it let go of its humanity and become what we have created for it. I understand that to even mention the word soul in a western psychology essay is as unpopular as mentioning that the earth is round or that earth orbits the sun was in western intellectual circles in the 14th century.

So then I ask, how have we come to this point that, even if we exclude the existence of souls and things of that nature, that humanity considers it the best course of action for itself to sit on a proverbial pile of skulls and struggle with one another eternally for the top position. Rolling that boulder up a hill like Sisyphus eternally trying to accomplish the peace and standard of living that is ever elusive as it depends on others not having it and those that have nothing will always try to gain everything. So our very society is formed in a way that promotes ruthless competition for limited resources and the competition itself has taken on an absurd form. With the US yearly military budget now so grossly overpowered that the limited resources they are competing for are being used to keep competing for even less limited resources. Sadly this seems to only strike those who are struck by the US military budget as odd and rarely evokes more than a curious joke from the present western intellectuals. The very word, disorder, means something that does not fit into the accepted norm, if the accept norm of society is as seems likely the procurement of resources at any means available from others then psychopathy is really not a disorder. If we however view society as some form of altruistic all for one and one for all utopia then it becomes obvious that psychopathy as well as most human behavior is deviant from the norm however, realistically speaking human society is hardly any kind of altruistic utopian society.

So can it not be argued, even if psychopathy supposedly has organic causes in the brain dysfunctions that the true cause is in a society that espouses psychopathic values? Or is the charge that there might truly be something wrong with our society as repugnant as saying that the victim of rape might also have a responsibility to bare for the action? Perhaps these questions are better left to more capable hands but I must still point out that our society is truly psychopathic in more than one way as I pointed out before. That the only real difference between a psychopath who abuses randomly and a healthy man who abuses purposefully those in the distance is the randomness of the psychopath’s actions. The psychopath has no compassion even for those close to him like normal humans do. If I run a factory or a corporation and kill thousands or even millions over the course of decades to bring my products to the western markets I make the Forbes 500 lists. If I do the same with a gun I make the FBI’s most wanted lists. This irony does not escape the mind of a psychopath either.


The conclusions I have drawn from writing this essay and spending the last decade reading a great deal of material about psychopathy as well as other forms of disruptive behavior is simple, whatever the cause of psychopathy, Nature or Nurture we must face psychopathy as a whole far more seriously than we have now! If psychopathy is caused by our own societal choices then we must look in the mirror and see what it is that is making us as a society bring forth psychopathy in such a way that is causing billions to suffer needlessly? If Psychopathy is caused by biological factors then we should try our best to find a cure and a way to prevent psychopathy from ever surfacing, even then, I believe it is of the utmost importance that we as a society look into a mirror and see what we have become. While it is normally not the task of psychology to act as philosophy and ask these hard questions I feel compelled to do so. Why are we as a society still complacent, why can we not expand our sphere of family to cover the entire humanity, why is it that we can so easily stand by and allow billions to suffer when in reality it would only take us less than to move a finger to help them. I’m hesitant to say this but if there truly is a God out there that is looking down on us I’m certain that we would not be judged favorably. Instead of marching people into the concentration camps, two by two we march them to our mines and factories and tell them to work until they die of the poisons and the dangers we bring upon them. That it is alright to abuse by ignorance but not by design. That it is alright to kill if you know not what you are doing.

During the Nuremberg trials many tried to appeal that they were only doing their job and it did not work then and it will not work in the eyes of any moral judge. As long as psychology describes illness based on inability to fit into mainstream society and as long as main stream society is as it appears to be dominated by its lack of empathy. Psychology will always miss the big picture regarding psychopathy as well as other illness of that nature, that they are only doing openly what others do covertly and true enough, psychopathy is detected only by its outer actions and what people with psychopathy get caught doing, thus the distinction into successful and unsuccessful psychopaths, those who abuse and get caught and those who abuse and don’t get caught.

Psychopathy is right at home in our society.

Bibliography and Citations







[7] Psychopaths and response to treatment Rice, Harris and Cormier (1992). Text can be bought online if searched for, I have a copy from a friend in Cardiff university.



[10] Dr. Robert Hare; Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us. One of the quotes from psychopaths.


[12] Dr. Robert Hare; Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us. One of the quotes from psychologist.






[18] Various primates as well as wolf packs or bears can intentionally kill another after long term planning to gain something even if it risks its own long term survival. Single source difficult to acquire but reading on animal behavior will produce an acceptable source.

[19] Source is a little fuzzy here as well as, there are discovery channel documents about the different behaviors of primate groups under stress but finding an appropriate one here is difficult.

[20] Previous points are valid for this as well, I would recommend reading up on the social structures of small monkeys for an appropriate reference.

[21] Dr. Robert Hare; Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us. One of the quotes from psychopaths.

[22] 476 billionaires total net worth is 1.7trillionUSD. With an UN yearly budget of 20 billion USD to 5 billion depending on source. That 1700 billion could be spent to fund the entire UN for 85-340 years. For example, the cost of a vaccination program for Africa and Asia that would save up to 10 million lives is 4 billion USD At a cost of 0.2% of the total worth of the top 476 billionaires of the world.

[23] I apologize for not being able to provide the source for this, I’ve seen it several times in scientific magazines but can’t track them down anymore.