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  #81  
Old 10-30-2013, 06:11 AM
InfinitePossibility InfinitePossibility is offline
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I agree very much with you about shame being destructive. Regarding bodies and nudity, I find it far more useful to be able to appreciate my body by thinking about the good things that it can do.

Running, sharing knowledge, working with dogs, programming computers, having sex spring to mind - lots and lots of good things. Things to be appreciated.

That way I spend less time worrying about being a bit overweight and less time focusing on the bits of myself that I don't like.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ColorsWolf View Post
As to your reference to myself, you have obviously not read my entire posts as it seems you may have overlooked some thing.~

I said when I was in highschool growing through puberty I had a very violent mentality.~

Being removed from that poisonous to me environment and homeschooling significantly changed my outlook on life, because I was lost, disconnected, and confused before and now I am discovering who I am as I live.~
I suspect that I haven't completely read all of your posts but I did concentrate a lot on the claims you made about non-humans and your use of them to justify your own world view. I prefer that non-humans be thought as individuals as much as humans are because they are and so I find myself a little irritated to read about all non-humans being lumped together in one mass as you seem to do sometimes.

Your words that I picked up on were:

From post 57
Quote:
BUT every one DOES have some 'basic form' of 'respect', like "Don't touch me unless I say you can or I WILL HURT YOU!"
Repeated in post 66
Quote:
My words of "BUT every one DOES have some 'basic form' of 'respect', like "Don't touch me unless I say you can or I WILL HURT YOU!"" I said LIKE AS IN AN EXAMPLE.~ This example is taken from the most basic of all seemingly natural "mentalities" of all "wild creatures".~
There is nowhere there that you say you now disagree with that sentiment. In fact, you were stating it as an obvious and 'logical' fact.

You also said:

From post 59
Quote:
Like I said once before: I say what I mean and I mean what I say.~

Please do not inject meanings into my messages that I did not put there plainly to see again.~
So I took you at your word and was pointing out that all non-humans do not have a single natural 'mentality' and that hurting one another just for being touched unexpectedly isn't a common part of interaction between non-humans. Nor is it between human beings.

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  #82  
Old 10-30-2013, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by InfinitePossibility View Post
I agree very much with you about shame being destructive. Regarding bodies and nudity, I find it far more useful to be able to appreciate my body by thinking about the good things that it can do.

Running, sharing knowledge, working with dogs, programming computers, having sex spring to mind - lots and lots of good things. Things to be appreciated.

That way I spend less time worrying about being a bit overweight and less time focusing on the bits of myself that I don't like.



I suspect that I haven't completely read all of your posts but I did concentrate a lot on the claims you made about non-humans and your use of them to justify your own world view. I prefer that non-humans be thought as individuals as much as humans are because they are and so I find myself a little irritated to read about all non-humans being lumped together in one mass as you seem to do sometimes.

Your words that I picked up on were:

From post 57

Repeated in post 66

There is nowhere there that you say you now disagree with that sentiment. In fact, you were stating it as an obvious and 'logical' fact.

You also said:

From post 59

So I took you at your word and was pointing out that all non-humans do not have a single natural 'mentality' and that hurting one another just for being touched unexpectedly isn't a common part of interaction between non-humans. Nor is it between human beings.

IP
I hope you can forgive my overgeneralization of non-Humans.~ ^_^

I have corrected myself with my post responding to your's and I hoped you noticed that as well:

"In regards to my statements on "wild creatures",: you are right, I'm sorry, I will say that "from my knowledge of interactions between non-wild Humans and and wild creatures" I have seen this kind of behavior of "caution" that could easily become "violent".~

Of course, our observations of other species can never be truly considered "the leading experts" as the only "leading experts" are those of the species in question themselves as our methods of communication with those outside our own species is still called into question as to their validity and to their stability: we just don't know any thing for sure.~"
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  #83  
Old 10-30-2013, 09:48 PM
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InfinitePossibility,

I like your point about all the good things there are to treasure in life, and how we can hopefully tend to focus on the good rather than get all depressed about the not-so-hot.

Re: shame ... gosh, I think we can all agree that it is destructive. Oh I don't know, maybe if you've done something really bad to someone, shame is an appropriate initial response as part of the process of repentence? I don't know.

Let's just say that most of the shame we (or at least I) feel for the little things we (I) do "wrong" is quite (emotionally) destructive, serving no beneficial purpose. Same with feeling shame about things we can't really help, such as our body shape and that. Ah, now if I could only convince my mental innards to give that grubby little brand of shame up.

I like your point that each animal is just as much a unique individual as is each human. For those of us with dogs and/or cats as pets, we clearly see that principle. And it's worth noting that some pets (as well as wild animals) come "infected" with painful cruel damage from their past, and it makes it harder for them to be "friendly" (towards any other living creature). Same principle with humans, of course.

Heheh ... I must here mention my favorite bit of Facebook page: a video of one of the weirdest spiders I've ever seen. This guy is in some kind of patch of flour or something, with a mirror-like wall on the side. It turns this way and that, looks at itself in the mirror, digs furiously in the flour for no imaginable reason, and then at the very end, buries itself with a bunch of flour! Goddamn that's funny. Who said spiders were all about catching prey? They have some very peculiar personal interests on the side.

Re: respect ... I, too, have a hard time with associating that word with physical violence. I guess you could argue that it's self-respectful to defend yourself in a life-threatening situation. But how much respect does one even show for oneself when a mere unpermitted touch is cause for violence? On the other hand, I guess anyone would "respect" a person such as the Godfather, who they knew was very powerful and could easily snuff their life out if he wanted. It's just that in most cases, I associate the word "respect" with being nice to people. You know, acknowledging their feelings and expressing common ground?

Re: touch ... it is surely more *common* for both humans and animals to react to "unpermitted touch" peacefully, perhaps (as in the wolf example you cited in your earlier post) a warning snarl at most. I mean that even makes sense. Evolution tends to imbue group animals with traits that will help them live together and get along. Even solitary animals, at most "touch" is a trigger of fear for them; that is, they're more likely to run away than they are to attack the toucher. Doesn't running away offer them the better odds of survival? Almost every animal, both meat-eater and plant-eater, lives in natural fear of predators (or fellow predators). It's not like they're on some mission to "kill all their enemies." (Whereas in the Godfather movies, the main character was indeed on a mission to kill all his enemies. Hey like I said, *humans* are the truly violent species, compared to all other species.)

The most "touchy" issue surrounding touch that I can think of in the animal kingdom is between mating spiders. The male has to be really careful about how he touches (or even approaches) the female, lest he become her next meal before he can even perform his reproductive duty.

But even going back to humans, the most violent of all animals: in *most* cases, humans do tolerate touch between one another. (Humans are, after all, ultimately social/group animals.) Just think of a subway in New York where people are constantly bumping up against (and crowding) one another. They tend to patiently endure that invasion of personal space. Most humans do have an understanding that we don't attack each other just because someone didn't get our permission to touch us. We may be annoyed by the unwelcome touch, but we don't go all postal on the other person.

But as all humans (and animals) are unique (with unique backgrounds), there certainly *can* be such a thing as, "Look out, if you touch that *particular* person or animal, you are likely to suffer a viscious punch or bite."

By the way: what on earth does all this touch/violence stuff have to do with the thread topic? I think it relates because it was once mentioned that "morality" was a fallacy as a concept and that (for example), "Hey, *this* animal will go apeshit on another animal if touched without permission, and that has nothing to do with morality, it just has to do with respect." Not sayin' I agree obviously, just observing that the subject arguably isn't a total hijack.
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  #84  
Old 10-30-2013, 09:57 PM
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ColorsWolf,

Please accept my sentiment that we have had a good run of it, and have both tried to get along with each other. Now, for the good of each other, and the good of the site, let's take into account the possibility that we may not be capable of getting along, at least not without hurting/offending each other (and making each other lose a lot of sleep).

I don't begrudge you your freedom of expression, and I'm not trying to compose a bunch of "rules" that you have to live by. You don't have to live by any of my "rules." I just hope you'll understand that I, too, have my freedom, and my participation in our conversation is voluntary. So if I bow out of the conversation, I'm not saying that there's something wrong with you, I'm just saying that I personally have my own boundaries that I have to honor if I am to take responsible care of myself.

In a nutshell, if our conversation is over, please don't be disappointed with me or hold it against me. Let's just agree to walk our different paths, and you have a wealth of Polyamory.com members to interact with, regardless of whether I'm personally available for interaction.

Am I saying, "It's over?" Not necessarily. It largely depends on how much my interaction with you matters to you, and on if it matters enough to you to honor the requests I am going to submit to you.

I am concerned that we are wandering dangerously close to the old cycle of me saying inappropriate things that will only make you more and more upset -- or more and more frustrated, whatever word you prefer. Then you try to "defend" yourself against me, which makes me all stressed out, and guess what? We both lose. Meanwhile, how has Polyamory.com benefitted? Has it become a more edifying site? or is it now harboring some distressing and unnecessary drama between two overly-different individuals? I'm actually worried that some of the moderators may be thinking about locking this thread. Can we perhaps avoid that by agreeing to "touch each other" less?

It doesn't make me happy to "cut someone off" from conversation with me. I've never done that before. So, I am willing to keep conversing with you if you can agree to a couple of conditions.

First of all, please make an effort to contain your temper. When I see a bunch of ALL-CAPS TEXT (commonly understood on the web as being shouting), as well as other "fortified text" (such as bold lettering, underlining, italicizing, and combinations of those), I immediately recognize that, "Uh oh, I have pissed this guy off, he is no longer talking to me, he is now shouting at me and lecturing me in strident notes." That can't be helping either of us.

I hope you'll take my word that I'm carefully, conscientiously, reading *everything* you write (at least on this thread). I don't need to be shouted at or talked to aggressively in order to get the point. The sad truth is, if I don't "get" what you're trying to say, then "increasing the volume" isn't going to help me gain any new powers of comprehension. In other words, there's no point in trying to get verbally aggressive with me. It doesn't help me understand you any better, and thus, it doesn't help you to get what you want out of the conversation.

So yes, if we are going to converse, then we need to do it civilly, without "raising our voices" as it were (as defined by internet protocol). Sorry, but I guess that means you'll need to practice *even more* patience where I am concerned. Express yourself and express yourself well, but do it without trying to "force" me to listen to you. Instead, have some trust that I *will* listen, without the use of force or aggression, even if I still (as usual) "don't get it."

Am I forbidding the highlighting of certain words? Certainly not. Especially if a particular word (or short phrase) calls for highlighting by way of its unusual definition or application. But that's a little different from taking a strident tone with your audience just because you suppose they aren't listening (or that they deserve to get hit really hard with the powerful words you're going to say).

Aside that very obvious way of measuring the tone of a conversation, I also ask that you extend some trust towards my sincerity and express that trust in the words you say, even if those words aren't fortified. It's just not going to work if you can't at least trust me to listen and try to understand what you're saying.

Finally, please be willing to accept the possibility that even when I "get you," I may or may not agree. For example, I *cannot* condone violence (especially if it's not bonafide self-defense), no matter how "natural" or "healthy" it may be. It's just not my cup of tea.

I'm sorry that your wearing of black/leather clothes didn't clue your fellow highschoolers into the fact that they needed to stay away from you. Sometimes highschoolers can be pretty clueless. Perhaps they actually thought you were actually trying to be cool in order to attract their company? Regardless of how stupidly they may have missed your point, that still doesn't make it okay to go off on someone physically for the mere sin of an "unpermitted touch."

We've talked a lot about the inherent hatred (often) involved in clothing oneself (i.e. shame = hatred), but man, physical violence is much worse than the misguided wearing of clothing. With all the sympathy I can muster for your hard experiences in life and point of view, that's one point that you and I are doomed to disagree on. Clothes are just clothes. In the end, that's the truth as I see it.

Now, I am sorry if I have asked you the wrong questions about your personal past, or trespassed on your rightful privacy in any way. As said in so many previous posts, I did not mean to offend.

And if you want me to agree with you that there are gray areas in life (versus black and white), you're in luck because I do agree. I also heartily agree that none of us needs to force each other to adopt our own beliefs.

In fact that's my whole point. You are still free to be your own person and think your own logical thoughts, regardless of whether other people react to your person and thoughts in the way that you feel they should. Above all, *I* am not a required part of your personal freedom and integrity. If you feel the need, then I am okay with you saying/thinking, "Screw this guy," and having nothing more to do with me. I wanted to understand you, I really did. But my understanding isn't necessary for either of us to survive, heal, and move on.

You could be right and the whole rest of the world (including me) could be wrong. I don't think of that as a tragic possibility, I just think of it as part of the mystery of what it means to be human.

Now, at this moment, I am still willing to converse with you -- on this thread -- *if* you want me to. If you don't that's okay too. But after this, if I sense that I am angering/offending/frustrating/whatever you again, I will regretfully withdraw.

Will I still communicate with other members on this thread? Probably. Will I still be willing to communicate with you on other threads? Maybe. We'll have to see. But on this thread, for the sake of both of us, and of the rest of the site membership, things will change in that respect.

I suppose you will now feel like I am trying to persecute you or something. Quite the opposite. I am trying to give both you and me the freedom to be ourselves. Yes, I believe we should both have that freedom, even if my way of being myself is unevolved and unwelcome. I welcome your way of being yourself and hope you will reciprocate.

Cautiously and candidly,
Kevin T.
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Last edited by kdt26417; 10-30-2013 at 10:28 PM.
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  #85  
Old 10-30-2013, 10:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdt26417 View Post
First of all, please make an effort to contain your temper. When I see a bunch of ALL-CAPS TEXT (commonly understood on the web as being shouting), as well as other "fortified text" (such as bold lettering, underlining, italicizing, and combinations of those), I immediately recognize that, "Uh oh, I have pissed this guy off, he is no longer talking to me, he is now shouting at me and lecturing me in strident notes." That can't be helping either of us.

I hope you'll take my word that I'm carefully, conscientiously, reading *everything* you write (at least on this thread). I don't need to be shouted at or talked to aggressively in order to get the point. The sad truth is, if I don't "get" what you're trying to say, then "increasing the volume" isn't going to help me gain any new powers of comprehension. In other words, there's no point in trying to get verbally aggressive with me. It doesn't help me understand you any better, and thus, it doesn't help you to get what you want out of the conversation.
I realize you're addressing CW directly here, but this is the thing I've been wanting to say on this thread (and the other) for a while now, and just haven't.

If I taught a course in a university setting, and a student tried to answer a question of mine, but obviously misinterpreted my intent, finding blame isn't the answer. Telling the student to listen more/harder isn't the answer. Pointing furiously at the book and saying it's all in there, read it again isn't the answer. Getting angry and talking sternly (or even yelling) at the student isn't the answer (and that really is what ALL CAPS is about - emphasis). You don't succeed in communicating knowledge and fostering discussion by telling the listener that they didn't do it correctly and you'll wait while they try it again.

Is the frustration level worth it to them to continue? Maybe. Maybe not.

Is this a university setting? No. So there's even less incentive for someone to stick around if they're not getting it. No skin off my back if I choose to leave the thread.

Kevin, that was a hell of a post. You're a good egg.
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  #86  
Old 10-30-2013, 11:42 PM
InfinitePossibility InfinitePossibility is offline
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Kevin, that was a hell of a post. You're a good egg.
I agree wholeheartedly with this.

ColorsWolf, I don't know you well enough but from what I've read on this thread, maybe it's possible that you have a little more to do to free yourself from your old, aggressive patterns of thought and behaviour? You have demanded several times that people read exactly what you say and have several times seemed frustrated and angry when your meaning has not been understood.

It comes across as quite controlling which is kind of the opposite of how you wish to be. Change isn't easy for anybody and maybe it is worth thinking about and considering if you have more work to do to free yourself from the old you.

I did notice that you had revised your opinion on 'wild animals.' I'm interested to know what sorts of wild animals you have heard about interacting with humans and under what circumstances?

Oh - and one final thing. This video is very much in line with my view on why so many humans have such hatred for their own bodies. I think that the media plays a much bigger part in it than any sort of worry about nudity being morally wrong.

http://www.upworthy.com/see-why-we-h...seconds?c=ufb1

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  #87  
Old 10-31-2013, 12:02 AM
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Hi YouAreHere,
Thanks for your post and vote of support.

Heh, here's the sad thing: I *was* addressing CW directly there ... however, the principles I was trying to explain do apply to any venue or situation, just as you illustrated.

Nope; yelling at someone does no good in the way of "forcing" them to understand your point. It just doesn't work that way. Telling them, "Read the damn book!" or, "Read my damn post!" also does no good in helping them comprehend, as long as they've already read the book or the post in question.

You can tell a listener they're stupid or stubborn or dense or Neaderthal all day, but none of those "drill sergeant techniques" will cause them to suddenly get "smarter." The *only* way to get your point across is to find a way to speak to the other person on their own wavelength, in a way that their experiences and way of looking at things can grasp.

Hmmm, other than that, I'll just say (without getting specific at this time) that I know all too well that my (last) post wasn't perfect. Much fault can be found in it. But rather than try to "make it perfect," I'd rather just "explain the imperfections" in another post later on.

And man, I better have my ducks in a row if/when that post arrives, because I don't want to follow it up with any further posts to CW unless my requests were already honored by then by CW.

God that sounds ugly. I sooo detest confrontations and ultimatums and shit like that. But everyone has a line of reason they have to draw in the sand, sooner or later.

Anyway, yes, to anyone listening: *please* try to keep your "tools of emphasis" down to a dull roar. If you find a really cool way to put someone else's ideas down, you shouldn't have to shout it out to make it effective.

And then of course there's that really weird idea that we could perhaps put some effort into getting along (yes even if it takes some empathy) rather than getting caught up in pissing contests with one another. "Ooh, I'm the smartest," "I have the best ideas," "You're some kind of a heretic," "I'm the best educated," or, fill in the blank. There's so many fun and creative ways to compete with people, and seemingly so few ways (all of them boring and uninteresting) of trying to play the diplomat and keep the peace.

But if you want to educate someone? Yes, do it from their level. Stop trying to force them to "rise" to your (superior?) level.

Wow, sorry about the rant. Anyway, thanks for your post, and its show of support.

Sincerely,
Kevin T.

---

InfinitePossibility,
Thank you as well.

Wow! What a video! I just loved how they transformed this woman (who arguably already had a perfect face and body) into something even *more* perfect. Gods, those advertising people just don't know when to stop, do they?

Anyways ... yeah. I am in agreement with your entire post.

Solemn regards,
Kevin T.
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  #88  
Old 10-31-2013, 06:44 PM
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Default feminism's critique of body image, beauty ideals, etc.

Colorswolf,

You might find looking at some articles, blogs or books that deal with body image, sexuality and so on interesting. Feminism in all of its variations deals extensively with these issues - and not just from women's point of view although that is a focus of course.

One place to start is Naomi Wolf's 'The Beauty Myth'. Not everyone agrees with Wolf but she does a good job in delineating the current situation in my opinion.
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Old 10-31-2013, 09:16 PM
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Covering a mishmash of miscellaneous items ...

My lady (hinge) had a look at this thread yesterday, and we chatted about many topics (since this thread has many topics). She has been to Europe, and can testify that things are pretty "easy-going" on TV with respect to both sex and nudity. A lot of Americans might be shocked at what they saw on European TV. But, said my lady, on the streets of Europe, as you're just walking along, you see the same amount of clothing that you'd see on any old American street.

Conclusion: they do have their "limits" in Europe, even if not in all the same areas. Seems perhaps there's a bit of that self-hateful shame/modesty/dignity trinity at work in Europe as well as in the States. Basically, they have the same rules as the United States. Nudity is confined to certain clubs and beaches. But hey, they did (somewhere along the way) loosen up in the TV areas, so maybe public nudity will follow sometime.

Another point she made: the United States is an awfully big country. What's that got to do with anything? Well, you have your "red states," your "blue states," and all kinds of variety with respect to opinions and life choices. The point is, be cautious about painting all Americans with the same brush. We're not all willing parts of the nasty evil empire-building bully/policeman of the world. In fact lo and behold, some of the most zealous anti-American people in the world live in America. So we may be the "bad guy country," but that doesn't necessarily mean we're chock full of bad guys.

Yes, she had her questions for ColorsWolf as well. She's toured battleships and aircraft carriers, and observed that space is awfully conservatively divvied out. How do you live with a bunkmate where there's barely enough room to maneuver if unpermitted touch makes your hackles stand on end? Sucks for your bunkmate. Also, if you have "triggers of frustration" that are set on a hairpin, how do you get along with your superior officers? Must be an interesting challenge, at the least.

What else have I to say? I'll tell you. Clothing for some people is a way of hiding and covering up stuff that they're ashamed of about themselves. But what about the other kinds of covering up that we do? What about our pasts that we're afraid to talk about? What about the particularly dark shadows in our personalities that we'd like to keep hidden from the world? Isn't all that a kind of "virtual clothing?" and doesn't the shame/modesty/dignity trinity play a role in convincing us to wear "attire" over our behavioral faults? Like Satan in the Garden of Eden: "See, you are naked. Run and cover yourselves! Father will see your nakedness." So when we talk about physical nudity, do we also have the guts to psychologically unclothe ourselves for all the world to see? Polyamory, after all, has so much to do with communication, honesty, and all that.

Re: the Middle East ... my lady speculated that breastfeeding is perhaps just done really really discreetly over there. I told her that the links Magdlyn provided really said to me that Middle-Easterners themselves seem to be uncertain about what the proper laws/customs/protocols are in their lands with respect to breastfeeding. Some locals seem to say, "The women in my village do it freely and open all the time!" Yet other Middle Eastern women seem to be afraid of what might happen to them if they get caught being "public breastfeeders."

Yes and I'll try once again to draw everyone's attention to the "Mother & Baby" quote I ran across well over a week ago. I beg you guys, can't I get a little puff of indignation out of that? My lady commented that it was a particularly crazy quote coming from a parenting magazine.

She was pretty skeptical about the idea that women can orgasm from breastfeeding, but admittedly, she's never had kids of her own, so, no personal experience there.

Oh God, what else is there. I have a persistent feeling that I'm forgetting something, but then that's rather a normal state of mind for me. So, some other post, some other time.

With bold self-concealment,
Kevin T.
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  #90  
Old 10-31-2013, 11:21 PM
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Kevin T,

I'm sorry, I do need to calm down when I respond to your posts.~

I'm sorry, I'm just so used to arguing constantly on other forums where many people don't even have a logical common shared agreed point to start and mostly are just insults directed at me for their amusement.~

I've learned that getting upset over those kinds of people is really pointless and just contributes towards their amusement, plus I feel so much better when I realize I'm not wasting my time by getting upset over these kinds of things.~

I didn't really mean to come off as "shouting and upset", but looking back I think I was upset some what every time I responded to one of your posts.~

Any thing I did with "text" I meant to "emphaize" it to draw more attention to important words I thought were "key" to understanding my points better, but I did go a little overboard with some of it and I realize now I could have gotten my point across in a better way.~

I'm sorry for that.~

As to your references and/or "analogies" towards "violence resulted from unwanted touch", like I said I don't think like that any more and I certaintly realize now that can really be more of an "individual" determined thing.~

I wouldn't do those all those things now and I don't want to think like I did in the past, but my mindset was different back then, and I just had so much rage and other things that lashed out of me like whips of fire and lava.~

My past actions are simply that: "my past actions", I don't regret any thing as living in regret especially for some thing that has already happened is pointless, sure if I ever meet some one from

that point in my past I would surely apologize to them, but I don't remember more than half of my life from then and often I don't rememeber people's "official names" let alone their "official last

names" so I wouldn't know where to start if I tried to track down the people I did affect in some way negatively: which was a lot of people and unfortunely I don't remember the names of most of the

people I hurt because most of them were not my friends.~

I'm sorry for bringing so much negativity between the two of us, hug?~ *open arms* ^_^

I promise to get less pointlessly upset and to take it easy on my methods of emphasization for now on, ok?~ ^_^

Love,

ColorsWolf
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Love yourself, you are beautiful!~ ^_^

*Believe in yourself, you can do anything*!~ ^_^

Appreciate every thing, every thing is precious.~

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