Friday, January 1, 2010

REPOST- This I Know

This is a repost from the first day of last year. I had hoped to extend the list but it's the same so I guess I haven't learned anything in the last year.

I thought I’d start the year with an infodump. Here are some of the aphorisms I’ve picked up or written over the years that have helped me to understand the world. Hopefully you will find something helpful for the New Year.

God is far too fond of irony.

Spirituality is inversely proportional to self-righteousness.

Over the long haul, correctness is proportional to doubt.

Quae nocent docent: Things that injure- teach.

Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained as stupidity.

Common sense is not so common.

Never assume that everybody else is like you.

Argue with a fool and there are two fools arguing.

One of the primary purposes of religion is to separate people into us and them. One of the primary purposes of enlightenment is to break down barriers between us and them.

All too often, Christianity isn’t the religion of Jesus; it’s a religion about Jesus.

The opposite of love is fear.

You quit learning the minute you stop thinking that you might not be wrong.

Expecting gratitude when you help someone is ridiculous.

The more you love, the less you care.

The Democratic fallacy is that everybody’s opinion has equal worth.

Everything in the world conspires to keep you from actually being in charge of your own life. Including you.

Lotto is a tax on the mathematically challenged.

The two most common things in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity.

The only thing in the world you can be sure that you can change is your reaction to it.

We are stone-age brains dealing with twenty-first century technology.

The police work for the status quo. They are not employed to protect or serve the citizens.

Human society is an outgrowth of human nature.

One of the earliest things children learn is possessiveness. Lying is another.

Being sure is not the same as being right.

Psychology derives from biology, sociology derives from psychology, thus sociology derives from biology.

You are never in control as much as you think you are.

If you don't believe in luck, flip a coin and prove it.

It is never a bad idea to look for more evidence.

All governments eventually become malignant.

Gender roles were not imposed on either sex. They were inherited from biology.

No matter how wrong an idea is, there will be smart people who believe it, conversely there is no idea so right that it doesn’t have some idiot involved. (The popular expression of the second part of this is “even a broken clock is right twice a day”.

No person can be more than 50% of a relationship. A 50% correct relationship still gets a failing grade.

It may not have been your fault, but thinking that teaches you nothing.

One of the best courses in psychology you’ll ever have is driving in traffic.

Mentally retarded people rarely get angry. Stupid people get angry a lot. Smart people get angry less and control it better.

Democracy isn’t a system for making the best decisions, it’s a system for correcting the worst ones.

By the time they reach adulthood most people have figured out if they aren’t beautiful, athletic, or rich. However, they will go on thinking they are smarter than other people for the rest of their lives.

Insanity is continuing to do the same thing and expecting different results.

Class warfare has been being fought since the invention of money but it’s only called that when the poor fight back.

Life is a school. If you don’t learn the right answer to a problem you will keep seeing that problem repeatedly until you do get it right. This is why your cable keeps being turned off.

If you worry more about being respected than you do about respecting others, you’re doing it wrong.

Usually, not always but usually, when people are about to do something they shouldn’t do, they know it.

The golden rule isn’t “do unto others” it’s “love one another”.

We tend to dislike things in other people that we don’t want to admit about ourselves.

Spirituality is about making yourself better, making other people better is their job (not to mention impossible for you to do).

Unwanted help is always “unwanted” first and “help” second.

In college they taught me:
A class in statistics
And that generalizations were bad
These things are mutually exclusive.

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