Science is the reasonable application of reason to expand knowledge about life, the universe and reason. It consists of the creation and testing of theories. Scientific theories are tested with experiments that always utilise test tubes, microscopes and bubbly, coloured liquids. The results of science are published in scientific journals, such as Science, Nature and Wikipedia.
In the ancient past (pre-1950), science was a ramshackled affair with every man and his toga making haphazard guesses as to why rocks don't fall up and who the gods will smite next. In those days. a single human could know everything because there was so little to know. Nowadays, science has expanded knowledge so much, it has made the world incomprehensible. No human with a normal social life will ever be able to enjoy quantum theory, string theory or the big bang theory (in either its scientific or sitcom forms).
Despite science's inability to be understood by anyone other than Stephen Hawking and Krang, it is more popular than ever. Every man and his Facebook account promotes the scientific method as the saviour of mankind from the evils of misguided religion. Rational man is the hero of the day, and five thousand years of religious development has been shown to be a complete waste of time.
In order to advance science from the early days of god-smite theory to the dizzying heights of relativity and the Reebok Pump, the method of performing science has also advanced. The scientific method, known on the streets as "meth," is the process by which a scientific theory is experimentally tested and published for review and/or pillory by other scientists. Get your meth here!
Question Through curiosity, or the pursuit of a government grant, the scientist formulates a question. E.g. "Why am I still single?"
Hypothesis From this question the scientist will create a statement of explanation, called a hypothesis. E.g. "I am single because women don't give me a chance."
Prediction The hypothesis is used to generate one or more predictions that can be tested for veracity. E.g. "A woman who is forced to spend time with me is sure to love me."
Test An experiment is created that allows observations that prove or disprove the prediction. E.g. "The test subject will be placed in an elevator with me when the elevator stalls and the emergency phone doesn't work because someone cut the wires and we stay trapped for 48 hours."
Control To highlight the effect of the experiment, its results must be compared with a control, which is a separate experiment or historical data that demonstrates how the prediction affects the main experiment's outcome. E.g. "My entire life, wherein women are not forced into my loving embrace, is bereft of women."
Analysis The experimental results are used to determine if the prediction was correct or incorrect. The next questions and hypotheses may also be suggested. E.g. "Test subject did not survive the ordeal. Perhaps knowing that I loved her was enough and she was content to leave this life. This must be tested."
Once an experiment has been written up and any court proceedings have concluded, the report is published in a scientific journal. This gives other scientists the opportunity to scrutinise the results and repeat the experiment if there is any chance it could have a different, happy ending.
When a human looks at itself with its mind's eye, it sees
itself its self, which is all the stuff that makes up the human's 'I'. This I-stuff is impossible for a human to see because it is too close to the human for close examination by the human. Asking a human to describe its self is like asking a human to look at its own eyeballs without the aid of a mirror.1
A human cannot describe its self explicitly, but it can describe it implicitly. The self is implied by an I-shaped hole cut into the universe. The surrounding universe implies the self. Ergo, the universe is implied by a universe-shaped hole cut into the self. In this reciprocal relationship, the self relies on the universe for existence, and the universe only exists because of the self.
"I am not the rest of the universe." - I
When a fish is able to see what water is, by leaving the water and gaining a new perspective, it dies. When the self leaves its natural habitat, and gains a new perspective, it dies. But the death of the self is not the death of the human. Freed from its natural, selfish habitat of self, the human survives with a new perspective: if what existed while the self was alive is the contrast of universe and the self, then what is left after the death of the self is only the oneness, from which the human is no longer separate.
Self-esteem is a human's opinion about its own worth. Low self-esteem occurs when a human holds a negative opinion of itself, providing that opinion is incorrect. High self-esteem occurs when a human holds a positive opinion of itself, regardless of correctness. A society's self-esteem is the sum of its members' selfs-esteem. Modern societies have a low opinion of their self-worth. The evidence suggests this negative assessment is accurate, therefore not technically low self-esteem.
Lowering a human's self-esteem is difficult because humans are imbued with a fundamental worth that is part and parcel of being alive. This hasn't stopped human society from developing effective self-esteem countermeasures.
In addition to technological esteem-busting measures, a human that wants to lower its self-esteem can do so by exposing itself to a relentless stream of negative messages from loved ones, e.g. parents and advertising executives. This barrage of truth bombs replaces the human's opinion of itself with self-talk that mimics the original negative messages. If a human is exposed to these put-downs for the first thirty years of life, the negative self-talk becomes immortal.
Because societies with high self-esteem are happier and more profitable, attempts to boost self-esteem are rolled out to improve welfare and profit margins. The quick and easy remedy for low self-esteem is to replace negative self-talk with positive self-talk. A human can counter thousands of hours of negativity from magazines, television, friends, family and advertising by looking in the mirror every morning and saying "You're worth it."TM
Beyond replacing unjustified negative self-talk with unjustified positive self-talk, a human can overcome low self-esteem by ceasing all self-talk. This lets the world be what it is without the filter of unhelpful interpretation.
"We do not see things as they are. We see them as we are." - The Talmud
First attempt failed. Stop. Will remount expedition at the break of winter. Stop.
Social stratification is the categorisation of humans based on shared socioeconomic conditions and those stereotypes that have proven to be correct or hilarious. An example is the category that contains humans that possess great power, wealth and noses. With all humans assigned to their correct categories, they can be ranked to determine who the best people are.
In the Western world, humans have helpfully organised themselves into three categories: upper class, middle class and other. Within these layers, there can be further pigeonholing, e.g. by occupation and religion.
Social stratification is not perfect. Within a category for wealthy, powerful big-noses, there will still be variations in wealth, power and nose size. This issue should resolve itself as people evolve towards their final clichéd forms.
Every human would like to live alone in a luxurious, centrally-heated cave with nought for company but the box-set of The Sopranos and a 52-inch, 3D-plasma, retina-display, OLED, curved, HD television (or 523DPRDOLEDCHDTV for short). Realising that DVDs don't box themselves, and that televisions are not naturally curved, humans reluctantly work together to produce these goods in groups called societies.
The look and feel of a society is determined by the collective ego of its human members. An ego is the sum of the stories a human is told - and repeats to itself - about what it should be, e.g. rich, married, happy, fit, author of a best-selling, spoof encyclopædia. A society, being a collection of humans, is the sum of these egos. It strives to be everything its members tell themselves to be. This drive leads to the creation of rules about how humans in society should behave, look, work and relate.
Society's rules include important matters like how leaders are chosen, who is allowed to sleep with whom, correct use of the word 'whom', and whether or not pineapple is a real pizza topping. The society then persists as long as its members adhere to these written and unwritten rules.
The use of money to settle debts. (Written law)
Marriage can only be between a man and a woman, or a man and a donkey, or two donkeys, or a woman and a cupboard. (Written law)
Children should never be punished with physical violence. (Unwritten law)
Pineapple is a great pizza topping. (God's law)
Written law, in particular, can fall behind society's changing ego so that behaviours, such as homosexuality, become accepted by society but not by the law. Therefore, the agreement needed to be a society is often under threat. It must adapt or perish. Perishing then adapting is not an option.
Socrates was a man. All men are mortal. Therefore, Socrates was mortal. Apart from his inferred mortality, little is known about this alleged man. Having never written anything down himself, his ideas are only recorded in his students' writings and a low-budget, made-for-TV biopic starring William Shatner as Plato.
In addition to being the originator of his philosophy of "hit it and quit it," Socrates is remembered for his penchant for asking questions when someone voiced a belief or opinion. His interrogation would lead the believer to respond with an answer that contradicted his or her original claim. For example, if one of Socrates' many girlfriends accused him of sleeping around he would employ his Socratic method to undermine the accusation.
Aspasia (Socrates' current squeeze) Socrates! You said I was the only woman in the world.
Socrates Do you have a mother?
Aspasia Of course.
Socrates Am I an intelligent man?
Aspasia Yes, that's why I love you.
Socrates So why would I, an intelligent man, ever say something as stupid as you being the only woman in the world when you obviously have a mother?
Aspasia You're right. I'm such a fool. Can you ever forgive me?
Socrates Yes, my love. Now I have to go. I have a date with your mother.
With his Socratic method of questioning and manipulation, Socrates exposed what the target didn't realise they didn't know. Apart from notches on his bed post, not knowing was the most important thing to Socrates because accepting that one knew nothing is the foundation of learning anything. With his revelation of not knowing, Socrates was also the originator of plausible deniability, which he employed with great success.
Socrates enraged more people than just his gullible harem of nubile maidens. He sought to confirm that he was the wisest man in Athens. He believed this was the case because he was the only man aware of his ignorance. He met with Athens' wisest men and made them look like fools by employing his usual method of playing dumb and asking lots of inane questions. This insult enraged the supposedly wise men of Athens. Socrates made many enemies.
His mischievous ways cost Socrates his life. His enemies conspired to have him found guilty of corrupting the youth of Athens by asking them questions and making them think about things. For his crimes, Socrates was executed with a poisonous brew of deadly nightshade.
A human being often fails in being the type of being it thinks it should be being. For example, a human may think it is a great writer then isn't for reasons demonstrated by this paragraph.
After cobbling together an ideal self-image under the influence of flawed role models, problematic family members and toxic life partners, a young human strives for and falls short of its arbitrary ideal and fails to achieve its arbitrary goals, e.g. to marry, have children, author a bestselling ebook. For this common disappointment humans hold an existential get-out-of-jail-free card, a soul.
A soul is a repository of worthiness that is redeemed for one human salvation at the end of life. Each possessor of a soul is free to hurt, kill, destroy, manipulate, exploit, mansplain and lie safe in the knowledge that its soul is unstained and unstainable by any sin for all eternity.
The soul has no beginning and no end. Its size is only known from the human's birth to the human's death when it is always exactly the same size as the human. At birth, or at conception depending on whose lies you choose to believe, the soul is plucked from the nothingness and stuffed into the human body.
Because there are so many lies to choose from, some humans doubt they have a soul at all. They believe the world is only made of things that can be touched, such as tables, belly buttons and toxic life partners. A soul cannot be touched except by the skilful art of a talented composer of human verbiage! And if the soul cannot be touched then it cannot be real.
This rejection causes the soul to suffer and a human must be careful not to let its soul escape. The belly button is a common escape route with an outie belly button indicating at least one failed attempt. A human must be vigilant against soul-escape especially when having surgery, getting its ears pierced and manspreading.
Another common way to lose a soul is in a shortsighted deal with the Devil. A human in a rush to achieve fame and/or love will trade its soul for some skill that guarantees riches and adoration, e.g. literary prowess. Any human considering this option is warned that the pain inflicted by the Devil on its soul for eternity can never justify any short-term gain in skill, even if one's verbiage ABOUNDS!
Life without a soul is possible but not recommended. A human with no soul possesses an existential hunger that cannot be satisfied by those things that normally provide sustenance. The greatest paintings become drab. The greatest music becomes repetitive. The greatest literature becomes drab and repetitive for reasons demonstrated by this paragraph.
A spiritual human believes its body is a mere vessel that temporarily contains a spirit or The Spirit. When a human is born the spirit enters the body and when the body dies the spirit is released or returned. Between birth and death the spirit experiences existence from the perspective of its body without knowing it is a spirit.
Opinions vary about which bodies can be inhabited. Some humans say every body, including each tree, rock and flat tyre, contains a spirit. Some say only animals and humans are spirited. Some say only humans have spirit. And some say only certain humans, such as Jesus Christ, contain spirits.
A spiritual human believes it is spirited so makes a lifelong effort to experience its spiritual side. Meditation, yoga and prayer may help to do this.
- Etymology of Yoga
From Sanskrit, meaning union and the steps taken to achieve the union of body and spirit.
Experiencing spirit is a contradiction because its true nature is beyond the body, which is the means of experience. A human cannot experience the loss of experience, if the loss is achieved then the experience is lost too.
The only way a human can glimpse spirituality and live is to stop its own experience as much as possible. The human must look without seeing, hear without listening, be without being. Meditation, yoga and prayer may help to do this.
Spirituality's opposing view is that humans, rocks and flat tyres are only bodies without an internal spirit. Nothing exists before birth or after death.
"Man was matter, that was Snowden's secret. Drop him out of a window, and he'll fall. Set him on fire and he'll burn. Bury him and he'll rot, like other kinds of garbage." - Catch-22, Joseph Heller
Some humans find this view harsh but undeniable. They are advised to accept and use the pointless nature of existence, as well as its abrupt end, as motivation to enjoy the present moment. Meditation, yoga and prayer may help to do this.
Known scienterifically as a night sparkle, a star is a super-massed spheroid of plasmaotic matterium whose explosile energy is matched neatly by its tremendulous force of gravitude. Stars form from the dispersed matteration that exists in the interstecular mediocrity of space. A star spends the majoration of its life fusilating hydrogen into helium in a processtation known as nuclear fusion. Once its nuclear fuel is consumpted, a small star will desizify to approximile Earth before extinguifying over a long time. When a large star undergoes a decommencation, it transmogrifights into a supernova: a dying star that shines so bright historical observers describe it as a new star being born where none was before.
When a human wants to lie to your face and get away with it, it will quote a statistic. A statistic is a number stripped of truth and accountability. It begins life as part of a scientific study, where it is used to summarise a specific phenomena observed under controlled circumstances. For example, a soldier in a controlled environment and wearing army fatigues will lose body heat, with 20% of heat lost being through the head, face and neck.
Once the statistic has freed itself of scientific rigour, it will mutate in the wild into something more general. For example, 40% of all body heat is lost through the head, face and neck. After mutating and shedding all of its original meaning, the stat will mutate again and again until all of its useful information is lost. At this zenith of evolution, the only way a statistic can continue to grow is to become exaggerated. Extending the above example, 80% of body heat is lost through the top of the head.
Statistics evolve in this way because, while it is important that a human understands the world, it is more important that a human not understand the world more than it has to. The mental effort required to accurately comprehend the world is formidable. A human conserves energy by eradicating extraneous details (read truth) from its world view. 100% of humans think this way.
Some notable statistics are,
humans only use 10% of their brain power,
100% of humans reading this book are intelligent, attractive and witty, and
99.9% of body heat is lost through a 1cm square of scalp.
Humans have two choices for viewing and understanding the world, subjectivity and objectivity. When approached by an elephant, an objective human says, "that is an elephant." A subjective human has more options.
I found an elephant.
This elephant is in my way.
Elephants don't like me.
The common element of subjective existence is the presence of 'I', 'me' or 'my'. Anything that happens to a subjective human is related back to the human. The human is the fixed point from which the world is understood.
A subjective human faces problems where an objective human would not. Consider a human that played the piano but no longer does. How would the two types of human explain this on the sliding scale of ob-sub?
The piano is silent. (Very objective)
I am not playing the piano.
I quit playing the piano.
I failed at playing the piano.
Pianos don’t like me. (Very subjective)
With each progression towards subjectivity, the human becomes more important. Being purely subjective makes a human feel responsible for everything.
My marriage failed because I was the problem.
I can’t meet anyone because there is something wrong with me.
Elephants don’t like me because my piano is made from ivory and I don’t even play anymore.
The human that says these things would benefit from a more objective perspective, as seen here.
- Shit happens.
The greatest success in a human's life is the attainment of success. No one can definitively say what success is but, like pornography or a rhinoceros, humans know it when they see it. Interest groups, such as GQ and Cosmopolitan magazines, do their best to define success. They provide monthly goals that humans should strive for in order to achieve it. Allegedly wise humans say that experience tells them success is an uncontrollable by-product of a life well lived. However, this attitude is not profitable in the cut-throat industries of publishing, cosmetics, fashion and fault-finding.
Here are some example of success.
Purchasing a home.
Having lots of sex with people you don't care for.
Being paid a lot of money for ruining a bank.
Being on television.
Being re-tweeted by a celebrity.
Wise (read old) humans claim that success is unmeasurable because it is an intangible side-effect of the way a human lives. Faced with this challenge, humans developed technologies to enable accurate measurement of success. These success counters are called hits, views and likes.
"The New History was the record of the expression of demographically significant preferences...In the New History, nothing was judged - only counted." - Within the Context of No Context, George W. S. Trow
The opposite of success is failure, also known as American foreign policy. It is the inability to achieve a desired goal despite significant military spending. For example, failing to force freedom onto one's primitive and violent enemies. Failure is the only sure path to success because each false step is a lesson in what not to do. Whatever doesn't kill you can only make you stronger. However, it may kill you.
The most delicious drug a human can consume is sugar. Sweet like candy (read sugar), sugar is the main ingredient in human food. It is usually taken orally, via the face. Heavy addicts also smoke it, inject it, and crumble a cube of it directly onto the eyeball while freebasing a Mars Bar. Sugar is a popular alternative to nutrition, so processed foods contain at least lots of sugar. Some foods, such as breakfast cereal and icing sugar, are 99% pure.
As with all drugs, having too much sugar can cause negative side-effects, such as headaches, weight gain and chronic heart stopping. It is wise for humans to moderate the amount of sugar they consume. Humans use a 4-stage medical gauge, called the Too Many Lumps Scale, to determine when they're sweet enough.
No diabetes A human with no diabetes can safely consume all the sugar it wants.
Type 2 diabetes At this stage, a human needs to control its sugar levels with diet and exercise.
Type 1 diabetes With type 1 diabetes, a human must monitor and regulate the sugar in its body with emergency injections of insulin and jellybeans.
Type 0 diabetes Also known as sweetened corpse syndrome, this is the most severe level of sweet dreams. At this level, the human is completely immobilised by sugar and any further sugar intake would be miraculous.
Sugar can be difficult for a human to give up, unless it wants to see its kids grow up. Under this condition, it becomes mildly easier. This list rates, from easy to difficult, the ease with which a human can give up sugar compared to other addictive behaviours.
Eating fatty foods (Easy)
Consuming sugar, if wanting to see children grow up
Saying "sorry" repetitively and unnecessarily
Consuming sugar, if indifferent to children's future
Checking Facebook repetitively and unnecessarily (Difficult)
Humans like to explain everything. Providing explanations is a useful skill; when one thing explains another, a human can know how things got the way they are and what will happen next.
Apples fall down becuase of gravity.
Lung cancer is cuased by smoking.
No one buys my book becuase it is full of spelling mistakes.
Nature abhors a vacuum, and human nature abhors an explanatory vacuum. A human can’t stand a lack of explanation, even when none makes sense. For a situation where no logical explanation exists, a human uses a cover-all explanation called ‘superstition’. Here are some examples.
Walking under a ladder cuases bad luck.
Apples fall down becuase of bad luck.
Lung cancer is cuased by bad luck.
Poor book sales are cuased by spelling mistakes.
The creation of superstitions is unregulated, so humans proliferate these incorrect explanations. To combat them, humans created science, which systematically tests and peer-reviews superstitions to prove their worth. Some proven superstitions are,
Newton’s Law of Gravity,
Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, and
Why won’t anynoe buy my book?
Humans like to survive and are difficult to kill. This is seen whenever they endure hardships that easily finish less-motivated lifeforms, such as bears. These hardships include,
being trapped in a sunken submarine,
being trapped in a bear trap, and
being trapped in a loveless marriage.
Surviving is something a human does without much effort until the age of thirty. After thirty some effort is required, mostly to belay the rising existential doubt caused by the realisation that death will come.
This early, easy life is brought to you by evolution. A human has an evolved body capable of achieving homeostasis with very little input. All a human needs is food, water and shelter. Some humans say they also need to love and be loved but this has been proved false by the long periods humans have survived alone in loveless marriages and sunken submarines.
The question will a human survive is less important than the ultimate question, should a human bother to survive?
“There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide.” - Albert Camus
From time to time every human considers whether continued survival is worth the effort. To make its decision a human should use this handy list of survival's pros and cons.
Pro The TV series Friends. Con Yet more repeats of the TV series Friends.
Pro The laughter of a child. Con Increasing probability of being caught in a bear trap and laughed at by a child.
Pro Experiencing true love. Con Living a long life without experiencing true love.
Pro Chocolate icecream with chocolate sauce on top. Con Diabetes.
Pro Postpone funeral costs.
The list shows there is one more reason to survive than not. A human should be encouraged by this during its next reflective contemplation or submarine entrapment.
It seems that endless survival (immortality) is the obvious choice for any rational human because funeral costs are postponed forever. But this small gain is swamped by the huge cost of the endless Friends repeats and loveless marriages that eternity would afford. A human is wise to do as the bears do and succumb.
Or a shiny piece of metal, or a still pond, or a Polaroid camera, or a scalpel, or a sharpened spoon, or an accomplished artist.↩