Protest art-The Rise of American Facism

So I am deviating from my normal topics of autism and aphantasia, but still sticking to my guns of looking at humanity’s context.  The problem with ultra-nationalism is that it is completely predictable and often cyclical in nature.  The feelings and attitudes don’t just blossom into existence, they are already there and people with power frequently utilize this to their advantage.  The reality is, 50% of the population is below average intelligence, this is a statistical reality, that is not a judgment call, but with that comes a decreased ability to perceive cause and effect. As the world becomes more nuanced, more complicated, more grey, it also creates more fear, trepidation and anxiety in the population.  As I have stated many times, no individual human can fully understand objective reality, we have limited senses and limited intellectual capability, the fact is our primate mind is still adapted to the African savannah and many trappings of modernity are showing some individuals as being maldaptive to it. I am from a sensory perspective, there is simply too much data, both knowledge and sensory out there for my brain to handle, I have to fight consciously against black and white ideation, I see the appeal of a simple explanation that suddenly makes the world make sense, and that ideology reduces stress and anxiety on some levels.

In the case of fascist ideology, it is a perfect tool to manipulate people who lack the faculties to engage in extensive introspection of themselves and their own flaws and instead seek to apply the problems on external sources.  By creating fear of an external threat, you tap into this population, who by their very primate nature seek sense, order, and security in a world they simply cannot understand.  It comes in waves and surges, nationalism is not always facism, but it is a fine line. Fascism is a capitalist political system the connects protectionist economic policies with ultra-nationalist politics, and fosters xenophobia of difference.  And it is not just one population that suffers as a result, anyone who diverges from the desired “superior” culture is at risk.  I am not Jewish, but I am on the autism spectrum and during WWII , especially as a child with my frequent outbursts, I would have qualified as a mentally deficient, and I too would have met a state sanctioned end, maybe not a gas chamber, instead they got parents to sign off on euthanasia, left us exposed to the elements during winter, kept us in massive group bunkhouses and did not treat for fatal communicable illnesses, more passive aggressive in nature, but again the culling of difference that was perceived as undesirable.

Now onto the role art plays in this.  Protest art has a long history, my first exposure to Renaissance political art was Heironymous Bosch’s painting of a monkey.  In the case of protest art, it has the power to communicate in a way words simply do not convey well.  I can talk till I am blue in the face about Donald Trump and Facism to a Trump supporter, but it hits that subjective filter where their fear and anxieties are over-riding their frontal lobe, they are thralls to their amygdala and they process a challenge often as a hostile threat and thus a fight or flight reaction.  A visual medium is able to target the brain in a different way, it may be offensive, it may still elicit a hostile reaction, but the imagery also has a chance to plainly show what words are unable to convey. In my case I love to explore dichotomy and juxtaposition,  so in this case a treasured symbol desecrated by a symbol most find abhorrent.   I am a disabled veteran from a multi-generational military background on both maternal and paternal sides.  For me the flag is a powerful symbol, it means a great deal to many, some positive, some negative, but seldom neutral in it’s nature.  Until the rise of Trump’s fascist worldview I had considered using the flag in art off limits, it had too much chance to be divisive.  And yet, I don’t think many Trump supporters actually realize how far down the fascist road they have traveled, so I chose to create an piece to illustrate this, to show the symbolism of the flag, the swastika, a physical wall, the hand of a brown person behind bars, to call out his rhetoric as well. Not easy for me, since planned and conceptualized art is not my strong point, I do far better creating as I go and letting my state of mind influence the final outcome.  Yet, I felt the imagery was needed, that some needed to see images they may hold sacred juxtaposed with imagery they have a visceral reaction to.  And maybe, just maybe for some it will cause a cognitive stirring, it will get them to engage in just small amount of self-skepticism and introspection, even if it is just assessing their present image and saying “you are wrong we are not like that at all”, to which I say “then prove it.”

 

 

Chaos, morality, Christianity, difference, and part of my world view.

This is almost pure moral philosophy, my philosophy, some will take offense, some with think I am way off base, but for all who dare to read further, there is truth in this, maybe not your truth, but mine, so I take this chance to make public a few thoughts on Religion I have kept close to my chest, it is not an attack, it is an attempt to illuminate.  It also includes some of the very chaotic nature of how I think, and thus has some academic value for those who wonder about such things.


My mind has been exceptionally chaotic of late, I have wanted to write so many things but cannot maintain the focus I want, I am stressed and overwhelmed as usual, unable to sequester myself away from the myriad of distractions in my world. My mind is ever seeking more and more knowledge to prove what I have already hashed out as a worldview.  I worry I am re-inventing the wheel, or that I will offend, or a host of other things.  My mind is chaos, by it’s inherent nature, where one person may see one clear path or a very discernible paths, I see a multitude that is so overwhelming, I cannot shut out the voices of individuals, I try to hear and listen to them all, in this the internet is not proving to be my friend. I am trying to stop, trying to spend less time learning and adding to my extensive body of knowledge and instead put together a world view, an ideal, my interpretation of massive patterns of human thoughts, fears, and difference into a manageable form, and I am not sure I can.  My mind does not prioritize well at all, unless something becomes an immediate concern in the here and now, it will go beneath notice, I am a truly cerebral being to such an extreme I fail to even take proper care of myself at times save for forcing it into ritualized behavior.  This mind craves structure though, which is why it is so easy to imprint another perspective onto my own conscious thought patterns, where a book or movie I watch can alter the very cadence and tenor of my thoughts, because I am unable to do so on my own.

In regards to autism, I have wondered why I have been so hesitant to not simply lump myself in with say Asperger’s, besides the mirror neuron function which is so common, because I am not high functioning at all. To even get this blog as messy as it is required a shocking amount of hand holding from my wife, I cannot focus enough to translate my thoughts into action well at all, and the constant bombardment of stimuli makes it all the worse.  I understand now the pull and desire to be a hermit, but I do not wish to cut myself off from the world, but I cannot sanely remain mired but feeling ever impotent at the same time.  My daughter is both a source of great joy and extreme distress for me, a conundrum in a small package, a beautiful, wonderful, intelligent, and sadly hyper sensory child, who is precious to me beyond words, and it is for the children today and ones yet to be born I feel so compelled to define humanity’s context, to demonstrate as clearly as possible just how wrong we have been, how cultural detritus and a failure to understand inherent and fundamental difference continues to create societies filled with haves and have nots.

It comes down to healthy self identity, and for me, that may be forever out of my grasp, but I know one thing, I am special, special needs but a special view point as well.  The same ability that allows me to act, to imprint another’s thought patterns onto my own is the same ability that allows me to empathize with anyone, no matter how horrid, no matter how damaged, I can put on any pair of shoes and walk in them for awhile.  And this is an ability that is both crippling and valuable, that of the tortured soul seeking to stop the insanity and cycle of demeaning difference and harm, that seeks to speak out about how no one worldview as it stands is even close to ideal, because there is too much difference inherent in our brain’s wiring, let alone the differences of culture and society for folks to grasp it easily.  When you are part of the dominant paradigm the universe makes sense too you, but a safe sensible universe for some is phenomenologically speaking  impossible, a confounding and confusing hell.  The ABCD approach to life and credentialing seems so sensible for so many, but for people like me it is insurmountable, the never ceasing questioning of a mind that must get to the underlying functions, I am so tired of seeing so much human endeavor wasted throwing itself insanely at the symptoms and not even looking for the subtext, the underlying cause, why do we see these patterns repeat, why do individuals and cultures and nations rise and then inevitably fall, we have missed something, and that something is being made clearer every day through science and understanding, but that does not mean spirituality and faith must be sacrificed upon the alter of science, some aspects are being proven false, whatever form a supreme being may take, there are rules and laws found in object reality, the possible and impossible as far as our limited comprehension goes, to even attempt to qualify or quantify such a nature is an act of hubris.We cannot understand truly that which we have no context for, it is like shooting darts in the dark hoping something hits the target and sticks.  Some feel individuals channel the divine, that prophets have an open communication pathway with the divine, but there is no solid evidence of such, often it flies in the face of logic.  I often think of Paul/Saul, logically speaking alone there was no need for a prophet after Christ, I see him not as anything divine, but an earnest mind trying to understand the teachings of someone he never met, and he translated it well to the needs of his culture at the time, with the best of his understanding, but so much harm as come from it as well. I see more quotes of the Old Testament and Corinthians than the true words of Christ, Christ who found disciples from various walks of life, who interpreted his words in different ways based on their understanding of him, but we excluded 2/3 of those different voices when the Bible was put together, we muzzled difference in exchange for a more black and white and simple understanding, the Gnostic texts show differences, but so does the Bible.  Did Judas hang himself or did his guts spill out upon the ground? Biblical literalism certainly does not hold up under such scrutiny, but the different disciples had different perspectives and it is through the understanding of all we have some notion of the mind of Jesus.  When you silence some in favor of another you lose context, you disregard some voices because they may not have thought in accord with the belief system you have, and what a shame that is.  Let me state this now, I am a pattern thinker, I personally perceive Christ in terms of a man seeking understanding much akin to me, if I did not triangulate my logic and the correlations I see in my patterns, this is how one would end up with someone who has a Christ complex, but I see it as a specific part of the minds hardwiring, certain minds cannot stand the pain and trauma in the world, they cannot carry that burden alone but for some reason we continue to try, like any one individual could have all the answers, absolve the world of perceived sins, while tackling the real demons and real sins of false knowledge and ignorance, the demeaning of difference instead of at least trying to understand just how different one human can think to another. We must expand our understanding, we must make room, even if you do fundamentally disagree, if there cannot be an accord on some matters, than maximum self determination and arguments based on principle are the answer, not demeaning, or attacking.  I used to read the Daily KOS frequently, but I see it as demeaning as more conservative media, it calls folks who think different idiots and uses fear mongering as much as the right to get their point across, instead of trying to understand why we think so different, why somethings threaten one group but not another, and we cannot get passed that without communicating that difference, without understanding how the animal mind is alive and well living in tandem with our conscious mind, that we all have a little bit of fate tied directly to how we think and understand the world around us.

I wish at times I could stop caring, use my gifts to ensure the thriving of my family and the rest of the world be damned, but that is so against my fundamental nature, and that is something many should be thankful for, I do not lie when I say I can conceive of myself breaking bad, in a horrible manner, someone like me who succumbs to the damaged and scared animal part of their mind can do untold damage to others, though it is lost in my writing because I always provide too much context, I know it is well within my power to utilize my face to face charisma for poor ends, to take the truth as I understand it, which is not everyone else’s truth, and abuse it for my own gain. But I refuse, much like I sucked at sales, because I refused to manipulate folks into spending their limited income on things I knew would not live up to expectations, fulfill them, or add greater meaning to their life.  I do not like lies, I do not like lies of omission, I do not see myself as a predator taking what I want from the world without repercussion, because I see children in adult bodies, damaged, scarred, scared, and demeaned, I see the repercussions of all my actions constantly, ever single choice I make, even the small ones not anchored in ritual as having the potential to do both great harm as well as be beneficial.  This again talks to the chaos of my mind, ever branching probability and options, a world of color and patterns, a world filled with joy as well as trauma, we must expand our understanding of difference, it is a moral imperative to stop demeaning and start understanding, the dominant paradigm will not remain the dominant forever, it will be over turned at some point and replaced, and in this culture of bullying in the US right now, were we speak words of sophistry but fail to truly communicate we are in danger of fracturing, of turning upon ourselves, because we lack the understanding to reach out and communicate. We label one side or the other as evil, and thus believe we are good, false dichotomy.  We must move beyond, seek morality and fight against amorality and succor the immoral so they can see and understand the harm done to them and thus transferred via cultural meme like a virus to others.  The spirit of the Sanhedrin is alive and well and even flourishing right now, but instead of trying to divest them of power, we must learn to share it.

I need translators, I am sure I am missing huge points of my worldview here, it is expansive, such a large pattern, but the underlying causes are there…stop fighting the symptoms, and start finding the underlying cause, and for much of that, it lies in the failure to understand the difference that drives us forward but currently often drives us apart, and that is a human tragedy writ large.  I yearn for the days of Old Toledo Spain, when Muslim, Jew, and Christians worked side by side trying to understand the universe as well as each other, and there are so many more voices than that, so many faiths and world views. Once upon a time, like many, I viewed religion as a source of great evil in the world, but religion itself is inherently neither, there are atheist traditions that have also caused great harm, it is rigid ideology that cannot make room for difference that is the root cause, it is the failure to expand understanding even when it is frightening, to play it safe, to enclave, to avoid that which you cannot understand or comprehend that is the great failure of all cultures and ideologies up to this point, as I have stated before some have done better than others, but in the modern world those who are maladaptive suffer, or become scapegoats, or who pay for privilege hoisted upon them by external powers in the form of market dominant minorities a la Amy Chua. No one path leads all folks to the same end point, we need different paths for different minds, we must expand, we must grow, and we must nurture that difference, for within this diversity is the key to not just our success, but the survival our species, it is in short a moral imperative that we get this right.

A cleaner, clearer look at Autism spectrum from the verbal autistic perspective

Moved this to working memory, a lot of decent ideas, but the empathy part needs a complete overhaul, so not fully flawed as it has potential, but not right either, definitely gotta dive into Mirror Neurons more before attempting to evolve this further.

Note: After the first three chunks of text there is a section with three points, for the majority who do not want to even begin to read all of this.

Been a bit quite the last few days, wrenched my neck and right shoulder pretty bad so I have been out of commission when it comes to getting my thoughts down or even just mucking around in the Mechwarrior online Mechlab for a bit (I spend more time making and testing mechs than dropping for matches, guess they are my giant robot dolls).  So other than that, I have spent a good deal of time deconstructing myself more as I continue to expand my understanding, been seeking out folks via email to try and communicate, one hit back on maybe using me in research, wish I had more haha, you would be hard pressed to find a person who wants their brain scanned and studied more than I do, but I am still focusing very hard on separating what is baseline for many “high functioning” autistic children, and what is mental illness as a result of internalized fault.  And I have some insight on that little gem that is certainly worth exploring by someone, maybe some grad student who can’t figure out their dissertation topic might steal it and run with it, would require 5 to 7 years more schooling before I felt able to pursue something like that, freaking strict, inflexible, compartmentalized, credential happy academia and all that.

So, let me start with what I have been exploring, now as someone who falls under verbal autism and has not insignificant, but a decidedly specialized intellect, I have been doing a lot of comparing and contrasting, especially trying to hammer down the difference between myself and someone with Asperger’s, we are both “high functioning” (some more than others) but there are substantial differences, mostly in the form of empathy, something Aspergian’s are considered “deficient in”, but honestly I see it more as a basic survival function and just a more constrained circle of people, if someone’s life does not intersect their own in any meaningful way, the rational aspect found in autism would make one seem cold, and would be if you did not contribute to their survival, comfort, etc (it is not true selfishness, it is just very grounded in life context).  I am very empathetic, this is the fundamental difference between myself and someone with Asperger’s and indicates to me that the empathy function is important in understanding autism, but is not really unique to it, many people vary between being empathetic and thus socio-centric and being egocentric, totally normal human variables here.  In my case, though I lack currently a means to quantify this, I am an extremely empathetic person, and this combined with a preference for rational/knowledge based thinking, it what gives me the extreme compassion I have for humanity writ large, and can still not be shaken to my core by tragic events unrelated to me directly, I will feel sympathy for their families, I may even weep a bit, but that is it, that is the maximum depth, I weep readily even watching movies, I should, my brain is wired closer to an ideal female than a males, though I am quite happy as a male and appropriately have a spouse who has a much more driven, masculine mind set, we did a role reversal and it makes sense, thinking styles are not anchored in sexual dimorphism, no matter how much society wants to say men are supposed to be this certain thing and women this certain other thing, other than pre-disposition to certain things, like one could argue very naturally that hyper-sensory seems to effect men more often, could be true, also could be that the masculine ideal is pretty far from  how the Autistic mind thinks, that boys get broken more due to social pressure here (or a lil from column A and a bit from column B).  An advantage the Aspergian has over me, the socio-centric mind which is the mind that will alter perception of reality, subsume themselves to the dominant paradigm, etc.  And Aspergian’s as more egocentric, can weather this a bit better, but not completely, the urge to conform and just not stick out can be pretty strong in most anyone.   I have also been considering ways to clearly separate the two, I watched something on Brony’s not long ago that had a young British Aspergian in it, but I saw a tremendous amount of empathy in that individual, and I believe we need to tread carefully here, and make sure we are not missing that empathy function, social cues and social functioning are still impaired in both, but one will be able to read human emotional and one will miss those cues.  I read the social cues, over complicate everything and basically become stuck, I have to start a conversation off by going through a few basic hoops to make sure I am getting their context and my context right before I could even hope to ask a simple basic question other’s might find easy to ask, I am better than I used to be, but honestly I practice so much of what I am going to say over and over again in my head, both for memory encoding as well as making sure I have a template I can quickly reach for and utilize in a pinch, because my working memory, for all of my intellect, is poor, I have to rely a great deal on external sources for memory manipulation, part again of what makes the autistic mind a specialist mind.  So, Empathy, don’t miss it, do they learn pretty quick what a pet does or does not like? Solid way to try and gauge empathy, because this empathy function is going to have a very big impact on how they develop and how they get harmed, and I feel very safe is saying that high empathy autistic children have a tremendous fragility to them, and even with earnest attempts they are going to be prone to mental illness as they get older if they cannot establish a solid sense of self-identity.

This links back into something else I mentioned earlier, the wonderful world of depression.  So, depression is linked to a bit of the brain referred to as dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, it is seen as active when a person is depressed, but this part of the brain is also used for problem solving, utility, decision making, moral choices, relationships, trust, etc are represented in this area of the brain (decent source here), now if our qualitative and quantitative sciences would actually talk to each other more, seeing this area highly active in depression would make sense, especially if you have an inherent epistemology that likes problem solving naturally.  See, here we have a possible strong neurological connection between internalized fault as a source of depression and what we are seeing here, seems like a pretty obvious line of questioning and that is; the internalized fault, the crap you beat yourself up about, berate yourself, wonder why you are broken, hijacks your brain and tendency to trouble shoot and begins applying it in earnest to yourself, if you favor figuring out problems, it would be nigh impossible, I would speculate, to not go at yourself over and over again trying to figure out why you are faulty. So, if we have someone who is depressed, the cells in their brain in this region are generally the same type, but the more of the processes are hijacked by depression, and the results are telling if you look at the rest of what this brain structure does…poor decision making, difficulty problem solving, problems with trust, low self value that can lead to self harm. Combine this with social interaction and expectations, even without a hypersensory function an individual who is neurotypical as well would be hard pressed to function well. So, right now the burden of understanding and navigating the world is still mostly on the shoulders of the autistic mind, we teach proper etiquette and behaviors, and rightly so in many ways, proper context for communication and such are important, but we also drive them away from their natural body tendencies, people see things they associate with instability and insanity or a host of other issues in simple actions such as self grounding, comfort, distress, or even just mumbling to oneself because the auditory component is soothing or even useful, clever folks just hum a lot.  See, we need to do more than force conformity while saying we are teaching to the difference, we really need a hard look at the pedagogy currently out there since right now most folks cannot even begin to separate mental illness from internalized fault and low self-worth, because it is critically important we see what is truly going on.  What my brain does right here is it seeks out connections and correlations and asks questions about what I see, and right now it looks to me like existentialist psychology and neurology just met up finally after years of trying to anchor, and the answer is simple…internalized fault becomes depression for the minds that favor trying to solve problems and puzzles, and if one views oneself as faulty, that makes finding that top priority, and for an autistic mind, the results will drastically degrade their capabilities, interfere with their development of a solid sense of identity, and lead to trauma, mental illness, and even a loss of self, and we must do all we can to prevent this, we must stop arguing and screaming, and start communicating, the issues here transcend political squabbles and get to the heart of what it means to be human, our context as individuals and as a species, Autism is great for shedding light on these issues, but we see the demeaning of difference everyday in the form of sexism, racism, and a host of other ways we show our fear of change or difference.

     So if you want a clearer look at Autism what must we understand?

  1. We must separate mental illness from the underlying neurological function, we have to find when nurture hijacked nature.
  2. We need to firmly look at not just Hyper-Sensory functions, but how a mind manipulates that data, the visual component of this for example is a big factor in Temple Grandin’s visual, pattern, or verbal autistic. I am verbal autistic because I am unable to effectively manipulate visual data, I cannot think in pictures, patterns, etc at all, I think in words with a few tactile tricks for using my working memory, so don’t expect me to do stellar on the image tests 3 cards back, I have to translate each image in between into something I can hold in memory, but since my internal working memory is poor, yeah, I can’t do it worth a damn with images, words, now that would be a different story I think, but numbers would be pretty crappy if they were greater than two digits.
  3. Connected to the Hyper-sensory senses and manipulation is going to be the importance of empathy, this is what I believe is the biggest trait that separates me from Asperger’s, at some point the brain favors one over the other, and it can be by degrees, slightly empathetic, very empathetic, slightly egocentric, very egocentric, etc.  So, Temple Grandin’s groupings do not directly talk about empathy, but facility with animals and herd thinking, etc are solid clues to a socio-centric personality, which means if highly empathetic we will take abuse if we think we are defective, or even to just prevent pain and harm to others, in an autistic child with social communication issues, this is a bad scenario if mental illness creeps in, and I have plenty of first hand experiences I hope to share someday with just how many truly bad, truly horrible situations I have found myself in, especially after depression was in full swing and my decision making was so far gone, that honestly folks, I want my last 30 years back, wasted a lot of time trying to figure out what was broken in me, and I refuse to accept it as broken if I can socialize and do basic subsistence, this culture right now makes basic subsistence a complicated and terrifying nightmare for me to navigate, but 200 years ago in a more sedate less sensory heavy environment, my chances to developing a healthy self identity would have been greater, which is a nice correlation for my circadian cycle favoring the night, far less stimulus, I feel safer at night than I do during the day, but I should, I am hyper-sensory in all of my senses, that is a pretty good asset when one cannot rely on their eyes alone, throw in hyper vigilance from complex PTSD and I am a right mess, but damn can I navigate in the dark haha. But hopefully someone can learn from this mess of a different mind that I have, because so much of it could have been prevented or at least mitigated into being non-traumatic.

Below is Half-formed Hypothesis that devolves into a scolding and rant with little editing, because I am pretty much bored staring at this screen and contemplating how to better convey emotion via textual communication, hand writing conveys the emotional state of the writer so much better than silly emoji’s, maybe we need a few other functions besides bold and italics to convey certain emotional states, not too many, wow this bold text section became it’s own tangent…pretty proud of myself right now =P

So If I was to break down my current notions of Autism (so half-formed hypothesis warning, research worthy though) the hyper-sensory function combined with rational thinkers seems to fit, with empathy varying but being extremely important given the socialization functions.  I favor the rational mind vs feeling as one of the key factors combined with hyper-sensory, pattern thinking lends itself to this, I also tend to favor logical over what I call empirical thinking because it would manifest differently, but right at this moment,  since empirical thinking is even more compartmentalized than logical, that might be where we find savant syndrome, the specialist mind amongst specialist minds…I am unsure, but there has been research scrambling the section of the brain tied to savant syndrome, and could even explain some other non-verbal functions given the region of the temporal lobe effected, not sure, fun question though.  There are so many more questions I could keep asking, but we really need to tackle the mental illness aspect and we need to do more than teach “high functioning” autistic minds to conform, we need to be able to expand the public understanding of very natural behaviors, because the stress of controlling these behaviors, is more damaging than you may realize, think of the studies in regards to making left handed people write using their right hand, the brain is naturally wired a certain way, curtailing certain things will have a neurological impact, so we need to make some of these behaviors “ok” in more than just the “absent minded professor” role, if I wear a corduroy Jacket and a bow tie and rub my head while muttering a bit, I can be an eccentric scholar, if I am wearing jeans and a hoodie while doing the same thing, people read that very differently, and sadly because of how many minds like mine are snapping and losing their shit, I can understand this, but if you want to preserve human life and dignity, allow us our natural body language, please stop forcing us to be something we cannot be in a healthy way, challenge us, make us learn, but stop teaching us to not trust our own body movements and body language, in my youth, in class, sports, school, etc I was seemingly clumsy and awkward, take that same child out of the social setting and into the woods with a friend or two and you would assume I was an athletic agile little monkey, that is not neurological damage at the core there to my understanding, it is internalized fault, often self learned behavior to not engage in certain things because folks misunderstand, a lot, and as the one least skilled in communicating, guess who usually is on the losing end of that as a child.

If you want to stop those constant break downs the verbal autistic kid is having, communicate with them, even if it is hard, you must and you need to not lie to them if they have high empathy function, their social cues may be messed up, but I am telling you that at least some of us, get those cues just fine, and we become very confused when you tell us a line of bullshit and the lie is written all over your face, add in the social issues and extreme cautious nature, plus the tendency to not meet eyes since it is still a tremendous amount of data, I feel like If I stare into your eyes too long, I am violating you, and if you truly could understand just how well I can now deconstruct someone with micro-expressions, you might feel really really uncomfortable knowing just how much data my hyper-sensory ass coupled with empathy and an excellent mind for patterns and correlations, yeah, I trust my gut now, I didn’t for years, and it is not steering me wrong these days, give me enough context on a person, I will break them down to the point I understand how they prefer to learn, how they prefer to approach a problem, how they arrive at conclusions, etc.  As I have said before, con-artists know this well too, I choose to not abuse it, ever…I would be lying if I claimed to never have manipulated people, it comes easily to me, but I dislike it, probably because of empathy, but also life experience, as an underdog, I dislike the tools of the privileged being used against people, manipulation, marketing, lying, fear mongering, all these things I loathe. But the frustration in the form of temper tantrums is what you see manifested as a result of mostly frustration related to communication (or not getting their own way, standard kid stuff still applies here too), a decent example from my childhood was at one of my oldest friend’s houses, his parents were a wonderful influence on me, why even as a very stolid atheist these days I have a soft spot for Mormon’s, because they judged me so much less than others, even when I bashed my head on their walls after being challenged over a basic decency issue, his sister left her door open, I was good and dis-associating and not paying any attention, I was naturally challenged as folks do not realize often that my eyes are open, but they are not focused on a damn thing, they are checking the established pattern of human behavior and responding to abnormalities.  So anyhow, my response was pretty close too “I have sisters, nothing new to see here”, because there wasn’t, I am not enthralled in a sexual way by basic human anatomy in a natural context, but in this specific case, I got chastised on the inappropriateness, and was totally confused as to what was going on, it is the often false attribution of sexual desire as much as real sexual desire that can mess a poor kid up pretty darn good, and so…I lost it, I started smashing my head into the wall as hard as I could, so frustrated, so angry that what I said did not register, it was internalized fault at this point, had my friends mother understood what we understand now, I know she would have handled that entire scenario differently, and she did try to be gentle, but as she should be, she was protective of her daughter too.  Miscommunications go both way, and if the autistic mind has to work so much harder at it, the least people and the public can do is put in a little damn effort to understand what is just difference, and that these different ways of thinking are beneficial to human progress, and right now, minds like mine are not fairing well.  I would be pretty damn close to being “girly” in my pain reactions, empathy reactions and a host of other things, but it is not sexual dimorphism that causes issue, it is breaking gentle males like myself trying so hard to fit a social ideal we cannot by own inherent epistemology and way of thinking be. I was  (am) exceptionally sensitive, and that…in a not so well off small city in central Maine filled with other damaged minds, I never stood a chance guys, throw in that I stopped trusting my parents for the truth, I always trusted they had my best interest in heart, but I still would not confide in them, because I stopped trusting pretty much anyone to tell me the truth. And a lot of this might be a function of intellect, some verbal autistic children may not have as much natural facility with these things, it was determined my senior year in High School when the senioritis kicked in bad and I just did not show up to school or do assignments, that the only reason I made it as far as I did without drawing more attention was due to native intellect, well I would argue attention was on me no matter what when I was younger, but my intelligence is why I was not put into special education classes, I was strong academically save in more advanced math where I could no longer mask my deficiencies, and instead of asking for help from my math teacher father, I took the bare minimum and denied myself access to the knowledge I really needed for hard sciences, but without assistance I am not sure I can find many good work-arounds for my working memory and visualization issues, such as it is.

I do want to write more specifics about my life experience as a verbal autistic man, but that is a lot more work, let me state it involved a shocking amount of putting myself into extreme potential harm, at least two good stabs at ending my existential existence accidentally, repeat sexual trauma from a peer when I was young, a sexual assault in my mid teens (female against me, but I was deer in the headlights scared, and this may be TMI but it is pertinent, men can have erections as a result of fear and anger and intense emotions other than lust, so like when a girl says “no”, an erection on a male is not consent, period….), and several funny stories that could have had very different endings as well, add in the chronic bullying outside the home and fairly common inside the home, not to say I did not start my fair share after a point, once my big brother broke my naive trust, it was game on and I did, literally, try to end his existential threat to my existence, and he did likewise, screwdrivers at the head, blunt force trauma, me jumping out a second story door with no stairs attached onto a tree that got snagged and landing 12 feet below me on a pile of broken appliances, etc. Not to mention other gems like repeat forced confinement from him, force feeding me grass in the rabbit hutch, yeah the list goes on and on and on…I did not have “good days” in my childhood, I had the days I was left alone in my misery and days folks would not let me be alone in my misery.  This connects to temper tantrums too, remember the hyper-sensory in many ways is the animal part of our mind, fight or flight is a big issue, if an autistic child has lost control of themselves, they are going to seek to escape or force away the threat to them, fight or flight, so the kid needs a safe place to retreat too, their room, or other nurturer’s such a family or family friends nearby, do not pursue them into a corner, that will trigger a fight response and it is going to be a bad one, either verbal or physical, you need to let them have the time to take control if possible, yes if they are a threat to themselves, it is worrisome, head banging, self harm, these are tough things, but if you let them know it is ok to escape a bit and collect themselves, do so, let them, give them time to process all that data that the hyper-sensory have to process, and in public, sadly this is gonna be hard, and do not listen to the snap judgments and presumptions of people around you, spanking me was not a productive means of disciplining me, mostly because I should not have needed to be disciplined over something out of my control, and it is a damaged kid who willing eats, chews, and swallows Irish spring soap when he got caught using foul language, I knew it was wrong too, did not mean I even meant to say it….but I love my family, and like many others, I cannot hold them accountable anymore than myself, because we did not know what was going on, we could not communicate, my experience of objective reality is so very different than so many other people.  But, I still fear leaving my house, because when I go out, I have to put that mask back on, curb my natural desires again, but at least now I recognize it, but…it sucks, and I am not going to overcome all the somatoform damage done to me if I must keep suppressing my own natural body language and activities that interest me, if I want to hang upside down in a tree to see how the blood flow influences my thought process, what the hell does it matter a lick to anyone else?  And I see a lot “high functioning” autistic minds leaning towards libertarianism or in my case a form of Social Libertarianism, why? because the massive laws, social constraints, expectations of this current society, are freaking damaging to us, we cannot thrive under these circumstances, we can barely even survive it, let alone function in it, and shit needs to change on all sides, we need to make room for difference, we need to teach in the way the individual child learns, and stop basing what is “normal” on the dominant genotype which freaking varies geographically and culturally to begin with.  Harmony, morality, stop demeaning and devaluing, human progress will not even reach it’s full potential until we embrace the difference instead of trying to “fix broken people”, there is value in my strange way of thinking, there is value in the honest compassion of someone with Down’s syndrome, there is value in the pure rational calculations of a mind not distracted by an overwhelming amount of empathy. We need our difference, collaboration in science flourishes if not all the collaborators think the same, the current big argument on the need for or the desirability of genius, is irrelevant, genius is very beneficial in that it is unconventional in how it approaches things, this is insightful even when wrong, we all benefit greatly from great minds that still constantly ask interesting questions. Difference in culture drives innovation, but so does individual difference, melting pot cultures have a shockingly wide diversity of interesting ways of thinking, the heterogeneous nature of the gene pool and cultures really spur innovation, but the homogeneous culture, though it may spur less raw creative innovation is fantastic at applying, testing, and improving these things since a more balanced societal makeup facilitates implementing new technologies and ideas when they are acceptable to them culturally.   We do not want to muck around with our genetics to the point that we get less difference and variety, the garbage DNA of today is unexpected saving grace of the future sometimes, and we want that difference.  Could we put a bit of effort into upping intellect? Maybe, but we need to make sure we do not turn all humans into do’ers or just teachers, we do not want “A Brave New World” of genetic determinism, the random make up of our inherent epistemology as long as it is not an extreme detriment to quality of life, should be allowed to occur, we all benefit from children who are nurtured, taught the way they learn best, and are at least taught to not ridicule or demean difference, especially if that person is smart enough to get into the tech industry hahaha (yeah, not for me unless they hire me as the worlds weirdest sounding board), might rue burning that bridge someday, meh probably not, but even still, no child should feel they are faulty or broken on a deep visceral level, just differently-abled and maybe has to face a bit more adversity, but still not inherently morally or socially inferior to any other, to disdain difference is to spit on the notion of self-determination and liberty itself, and if you are a person willing to blame a child for a host of possible difficulties they may face, then I am gonna argue that you are a damaged child yourself, that your decision making processes are probably hijacked by self doubt and loathing, and that you are no more accountable for that ire than anyone else, not your fault either, we have simply failed to understand the extreme levels of difference in the world and failed to ensure all our children develop a healthy and positive sense of self identity to absolute best we can possibly do, and that is before we throw medication at the problem, trying to change inherent biochemistry to think, act, and function better in the dominant socio-cultural paradigm then it is reasonably dystopian in a real not at all off the deep end sort of way, we confuse valuable difference with fault and try to medicate it into conformity…yep nothing possibly a little off base there. And, if I feel I need to go back on meds for a bit to cope, my choice, my brain, my body, my self-determination.  Ugh got ranty there, and wrote way too much again, calling it a night.

Autism from my perspective and growth into the differences

So I want to tackle an elephant in my room at least, other folks who don’t have my context could be confused about a few things, at this time the evidence points to overlaps with Asperger’s, as a result of most likely the “high functioning” cross-over, but do not think of me in strictly those terms, there are some definite differences.  Now, I may fall into this definition at some point, but the obfuscation of what is inherent and what is socially or self-imposed mental illness needs to be cleared out.  So I want to go through some of the steps I, often accidentally, went through in determining what for me was inherent fault and not difference, and how that impacted my development and my understanding of the world. Do not doubt that I am “damaged goods” in many ways, I am, I am still trying to dissect learned vs inherent abilities, where my baseline grew and where it was negatively impacted by internalization of societal norms, values, and activities as fault. I will also carry many scars, and those scars will fade a great deal more than they have, but by their nature will remain, so um yeah for all the folks who catch me weeping these days, that is pretty much me processing my past or seeing the same crap being done over and over again, in public, with no understanding of how badly we are damaging each other. But, back to the topic at hand, I will tackle a bit that I can and call it good, not sure my kiddo can tolerate two days in a row of me being engaged in cerebral or intellectual activities, vs making sure Optimus Prime has the best outfit for the catwalk.

So, First things first on the ole autism spectrum, not fault, difference.  In some cases, especially in extreme non-verbal autism, this difference can be so substantial, that the difference does inhibit ones abilities to move in the world and experience it the same way as others, but part of that might be just having to reach out in non-verbal communications, I mean I am pure verbal pretty much, and even I find the rules of language limited, inhibitory, I would prefer a far more nuanced way of communicating, but such as it is.  It reminds me of back in my undergrad days before the Neanderthal hyoid bone was discovered, and for some the lack of this little bone attached to the tongue was the basis for saying Neanderthal did not have language.  Now, if language is the means by which we convey abstract and subjective thought, the very notion that a single bone was the source of this seemed asinine, and I promptly pointed this out, the assumption was language was tied specifically to speech, and we know this is not the case, extreme non-verbal visual autism is but an example of this.  Body language is another, and even if they did not have that bone (they do, it just does not survive fossilization well so it was a hard one to find), that simply limited the ability of the tongue to form certain sounds, it did not prevent sounds being formed in the larynx, through expelling breath, etc.  The basis for understanding was skewed because of a rigid black and white link to what we knew we utilized with speech, we built our understanding out from ourselves first, missed some details, and made some bad conclusions.  I would say that my current understanding of Autism is going through a similar area of growth, at first I had myself, the center of my multiverse as my model to go off, as I build up my understanding, I am expanding and seeing where things have been wrong and not.  So at any rate, there is a point to this in regards to fault and difference, the Neaderthal’s are but an example of how easy it is to assume difference is fault or inability, that is not the same.  But right now, a lot of folks with “high-functioning” autism, do not only tend to either internalize the fault, or let the label of that fault become self-determination in the form of “I’m not good at this stuff naturally, why bother”, which can be self defeatist. Myself as example as usual, I assure you, I do not like spending much time of things that do not come naturally to me, so to get this stuff done, I have to build up my own understanding of the value of it, from my baseline, my inherent way of thinking.  I am an extreme skeptic, and so is my daughter (this will be a wild ride), so many times I do have to fail at something on my own and I am not going to just accept someone’s own perspective.  It can be silly, it takes awhile to trust another person’s perspective, especially when you have socialization or trust issues.  But, to learn the proper social skills, one has to be able to understand their value as it relates to their inherent epistemology. In short, many people with Autism specturm disorders get to view themselves as defective and not just different, this is mental illness, and it will snowball over time getting bigger, maybe monstrous, maybe just masochistic.  Mental Illness is a result of being maladaptive to the current dominant socio-economic model as often as not, but since our focus is on the underlying neuropathy and wiring, it is easy to forget how powerful the socio-cultural epistemologies are that we internalize.  So before someone with “high functioning” (btw I use the terms, my use of quotes normally indicates from my perspective, a tone of dislike but sullen acceptance of the common vernacular) can really find their stride, their value, and in many cases a career that will fulfill them instead of a dour crap job.  We see in laughter and other expressions, that Joy is not denied to people with autism, if anything I could argue a remarkable ability to find Joy almost anywhere, since often that joy is inside our own heads, and that means, if someone is not finding their joy everyday, they have internalized some faulty crap and are holding onto it for dear life, because to be genuine right now can cost people their job, friends, families, all because we have to keep lying to each other, instead of understanding and accepting something seemingly as simple as understanding difference, but we are not communicating it right, we are failing ourselves and our children, and this can be seen through the increase in autism, there may be some environmental factors, but I do not see enough correlation to just that, maybe somethings do increase hyper-sensory functions in vitro, but for the most part, the spectrum disorders should still be able to function on some level, I am quite certain that Mozart born today to a middle class family that is struggling in someway, would be a very non-functional and damaged individual.  Buddha needed to remain safe behind his family’s walls until he felt compelled to leave on his on terms, with rigid life schedules, public schools, the high cost of nurturing a rarer type of human thinker, it is nigh impossible to safely and sanely raise a child such as that, the stimulus is too great, the means of subsisting so chained to a rigid economic means of exchange, and the “Culture of Personality” a la Susan Cain demeans that which is not extroverted, contrary to the facts and statistics that show great value in both approaches to life, this stuff is harmful to us.  Especially a verbal pattern person like me, not only do I see the great thoughts of great teachers over and over again, I see the insults, the demeaning language, the failure to even attempt to understand another perspective, and it horrifies me, because it is everywhere, unless you disconnect from the internet and never go into a town center, it overwhelms me these days, crap I digressed.

So finding one’s baseline, I used the Myer’s-Briggs because it was adequate for the task, not going to ignore 100 years of qualitative observation, I am just baffled that it has remained un-grounded in neuroscience as long as it has, seriously, the introvert vs extrovert stuff is a metabolic function, now it has gained more depth in my mind of late, for example, the use of energy by extroverts during testing, the effects of forced focus for too long for some folks can be noticeable in the form of mental fatigue as well.  Science seems to indicate that mental fatigue is far more than a caloric deficiency though, so though Introversion vs Extroversion is inherently in my mind a data processing vs data intake metabolic function, the act of suppressing one’s tendencies to accomplish something required has a distinct drain. I know mental fatigue well, there is a correlation between forcing one’s self to do things they find hard, or overwhelming, or just unpleasant.  Mental fatigue is a definite factor in fighting against one’s own inherent nature, thus by finding one’s baseline way of thinking, you are able to stop attacking yourself as someone with a fault, understand how you think, and once you do, you can direct your growth consciously in areas of interest.

The problem for me right now, is that my path to mental health has inhibited my ability to function in society, how screwed up is that?  I still cannot articulate the difference in my understanding of my own differences, the hyper-sensory functions I managed to long suppress, and I mean that, it is substantial, I now have to wear sunglasses most places, but it sure beats my looking at the ground all the time (made me fairly good in Archaeology, Prof and I used to joke about how we made bad tourists constantly scanning the ground, but we sure did manage to find a decent chunk of lost change over our lives). When you get rid of the cultural detritus, the internalized socio-cultural epistemologies that are damaging too you, you do in some ways really have to start again.  I remember many times, and it still happens now, looking at my body and just wondering when I got so old, it is like my conscious mind continued to progress as an adult, but the subconscious baseline that was repressed, has finally thrown off most of the shackles of self doubt and fault, reset to being a child, and it makes sense.  I have to relearn things from my baseline way of thinking, so in many ways I did revert to a childlike mental state in some areas, the temper tantrums are going away though, I understand my frustration as a the basis of most of my anger, and I am able to put that into a healthy context.  But at the same time, holy crap I suck at day to day living, I do not like leaving my house anymore right now, though I frequently want too, but I am so scattered, so all over the place with only my growing understanding of autism and my faulty context and human communications parity equation giving me any real focus at all.

Right now, I am still earnestly trying to wrap my mind around multiple things, I have ordered some books written by people with Asperger’s but my bias is already chewing at something I do not have context for, I see in one of the books that it has devoted some time to “fitting in” and I tell you what, that sounds far more ominous to me than beneficial, I worry I will see yet again more well intentioned advice that sends a subtle message that we are different, and because we are different we have to change our persona to fit the dominat social model, and I call Bullshit, pure and simple. It would be better to humanize our behaviors so other people understand them, accept them, and do not fear them out of ignorance. I refuse to go back to being what everyone wanted me to be, expected me to be, I am sick of going into public and fighting my own natural tendencies, which are not insane, or crazy, or anything else, they might be grounding behaviors, my be a reaction to over stimulus, I might just be thinking and dis-associating from my current surroundings as much as possible to chase a great chain of logic in my head…not fault, and society is fully capable of making room for this, as a child if I failed to notice or respond or stand up to an elder, I was chastised and punished for failing in my manners, which the bulk of the time were not all that bad, but one slip up, one mistake, and back I went to being the bad kid, the devil child, the questioner, the one who could not hold still and sit through class, and when I cracked with anger under the frustration, it again was all my fault, my difficulties, I was the issue and that is not the fucking case, yes my problems were an issue that needed to be addressed in the form of how extreme my difference was, but I never deserved to be beaten (EDIT: on the way to school, sheesh that could have been read in a few ways), I did not deserve to have to go out and pick my own willow switch, for fucks sake I am hyper-sensory, do you know what that experience does to the hyper-sensory, to get spanked yet again for a miscommunication or a misunderstanding, see I am not against logical consequence and punishment, but adults…you had best be goddamn sure that the behavior you are seeing is what it is, and in the case of my childhood, no one around me had a damn clue, and as a result of ignorance, the belittling and fear of difference, I suffered unnecessarily, and that sucks big time, it did a lot of damage, and now at 37 years old I get to put humpty dumpty back together again.  So let’s stop this, we must clear the air and not just let a few folks talk about the experiences, we need a massive effort to communicate and discuss this, and right now it is all over the place, trying to find good science amongst psuedoscience amongst the desperate attempts by adults to understand what the hell is going on.  And in my case and other’s it takes so long to get a solid sense of self identity because society is constantly attacking, devaluing, and demeaning difference, and this our healthy self identity becomes a flawed self identity based on internalized faulty bullshit.  Ok I am gonna stop here, I a dropping “bullshit” and f-bombs again, means my frustration level may begin to interfere with my thought process.

But know this, as calm and compassionate as I often am, I am also angry, and rightly so, we must make room for difference, we must allow for the self-determination of people within a robust and healthy social contract, to do anything less is to continue to sentence some of us to an unintentional hell, and I mean it, the fear, the self loathing, the masochistic vigor of self destruction in an effort to root out fault…that was never there in the first place, just difference, and difference has value, i am not gonna go all Aldous Huxely  and recommend that based on inherent epistemologies folks have a self-determined role, that role needs to be discovered based on our baseline and difference, but yes as a social species, we do have folks better at certain things, it makes sense, my best friend is far quicker to act on information than I will ever be, he is more of a leader, but I can generate so many possible scenarios in just a matter of moments, then I pick the best and most likely using mental tools like Occam’s razor, relay them to my friend, he integrates the new information and takes a definitive course of action, it is synergy.  We seem to despise the notion of accepting limitations in ourselves, it sets us up for big falls when our expectations are crushed under the weight of object reality or when someone proves us wrong, and a host of other bullshit.  I rely on my intellect as one of the foundations of my self esteem and sense of self, but to assume I am not allowed to be wrong, make mistakes, and fail in internalized fault or pure hubris, my self esteem should never suffer because I was wrong about something, I once hear this and I will paraphrase it as my conclusion, wish I remembered the source, and I apologize for not being able to give credit on this “Show me a perfect man, and I will show you someone who has never attempted anything at all.”

Pulling it together

So, I have decided to try and pull together a few key thoughts in a more succinct format and see how it goes. So I am going to start with a few definitions of words I use constantly, then a break down of what I see when I look at the MBTI typologies, and a more simplified definition of my Faulty Context theory and communications parity equation, folks might be able to read this even. (Completion update: I did okay here, I am still grappling with some decent succinct language when it comes to my theory, it is so easy to just run off and apply it to a host of issues, generates tangents and hypothesis very well, not great for succinct understanding though)

So, I have a few favorites words I like to use that are pretty much Jargon, but at the same time, do work well for how I think, I pick words that are the absolute best for what I intend to say, and sometimes just the effort of editing that chain of thought fails, so…I might as well define a few.

Epistemology:  By far one of my favorites, it means a way of knowing something, now that does not mean someone knows something right or without error, it in no way infers a rightness or wrongness to how we know. I see two important epistemologies in my work, the inherent and the socio-cultural ones as I define them. One is the baseline for how your brain thinks from conception, but trauma and damage can change this. The other, is our social ways of knowing, what we value, the activities we prefer, etiquette, etc. For example we “know” nodding up and down is a “yes” answer in western society, that same motion may not mean the same thing elsewhere, it is learned social behavior, we “know” what that gesture means.

Dichotomy: Two things in relation to each other that define their place subjectively in object reality, in my own definition, but really it is simply two things viewed in opposition to each other, so “good” vs “evil” is a dichotomy, the “conservative” and “liberal” labels in politics are dichotomies, I often reference false dichotomies, ones that are based on faulty context, I certainly include the two dichotomies I used as examples to be false, but many, for example the Myers-Briggs uses dichotomy, but it is inherent, a baseline, not stuck in a rigid black and white structure, so I would not call it a false dichotomy, because it is two end points on a spectrum.

Context: Well, context is a word with multiple definitions and use, when talking about context in regards to a source of information for example.  When I use context I mostly use my very denotative improved definition of the word, in particular in regards to personal or human context.  Context in regards to communication between two parties is a combination of their inherent and socio-cultural epistemologies in regards to a discussion and the object of the discussion, be it assets, theories, interest in art or peace negotiations. Context is the basis upon which we build our understanding about life, the world, the spirit, it all has some context. My theory focuses on the notion of Faulty Context, mostly seen in the form of false dichotomies.

Schema: Ok, so Piaget, a brilliant mind who studied his children for great insight into how they learned and stored knowledge, came up with his idea of Schema, schemata in plural, as how we build our knowledge. Now, the way Piaget describes Schema, it seems to be very empirical, which is to say learning in concrete compartmentalized cognitive structures, and this applies to a very large chunk of the population.  But, as I will mention below, logic is a form of Schema building as well.

I have more definitions as well, but they are best viewed in the context of the Myers-Briggs, and I use that model because I believe it really has isolated in solid qualitative ways a great deal of difference in personality types, I just want to re-orient it a bit with some new perspective, because I believe it is insightful, and when combined with my Faulty context theory, it becomes a powerful tool to understand what makes humans great, but also how we continue to inflict massive amounts of trauma on individuals and entire cultures.

Introvert Vs Extrovert: This drove me nuts for sometime, I tried to wrap my brain around it and I am so glad the slippery thought coalesced into something so, testable. What we are witnessing is a function of metabolism, the Introvert takes in more data than they can process in that given environment and the extrovert is able to process the data as fast as it comes in.  The two big ways we take in and prioritize data is the object reality as our physical senses take it in, and these sense do influence the other major source of data, social data, to include conversations, use of specific space, body language, etc.  So the Introvert will get fatigued over time the brains metabolic rate stays elevated to process the data, the Extrovert does not need to use as many calories processing the data and thus feels no mental fatigue as a result of this. Ambiverts are folks who are just at the cusp of real time data intake and processing, so depending on the situation can switch between the two roles, and may easily identify with practice what scenarios are draining, is it the social or the sensory that tends to tip the balance towards introversion.

Logical vs Empirical: To tie this back to the Myers-Briggs, this is Intuitive vs Sensing. I seldom use sensing at all in my blog, and prefer observant when referencing the Myers-Briggs, but honestly…I just did not like the break down and this was the first big chunk I tied together to help get my theory moving forward.  So Logical vs Empirical is how our minds process what we learn and dictates our preferred baseline method for building Schema a la Piaget with an added component, the logical mind. So to keep it simple, the Empirical mind naturally favors compartmentalized knowledge acquisition, they build up a solid construct of thought that is phenomenal with facts, figures, etc.  When an empirical mind “knows” something, it is a solid understanding. Piaget referred to index cards in the mind, each card a specific bit of knowledge, I prefer a modern city scape, Manhattan is a good example of bottom up empirical thinking, engineering in particular. So each building represents their knowledge, and each building may have a specialty with subdivisions within.  When an Empirical thinker grows and understands logical thinking and the value it has, I like to say the metaphor looks like Minneapolis, the Skyway bypassing some of the usual barriers to connecting information.  In the case of the logical way of thinking and learning, I like to use a metaphor of a pattern that starts at central point, the individual. Through cause and effect and the use of correlations the logical mind builds up understanding of the world through connections and inter-relations, were the empirical mind constructs great models and thoughts, the logical mind constructs one ever changing patterns, with empirical information and data woven into it, like a spiders web and the objects caught in it are empirical constructs that the logical mind has found value in and adapted.  So the empirical mind is going to like facts and figures, be more “grounded” in the here and now, the logical mind likes correlations (and can be prone to faulty logic if they do not learn to do things like triangulate and vet their information sources, psuedoscience, etc can really hijack a good logical mind) and if more dis-associative by nature, less “grounded” in the here and now, logical minds enjoy their heads in the clouds, it is where they will always do their best work.

Rational vs Feeling:  Ok, this was my breakthrough one that helped me identify the faulty internalized ways of knowing in my own head, so I have a special, but arguably more prone to biased outlook on this, then again I am naturally going to favor my own inherent baseline anyways.  So rational vs feeling is a social function, it is the evolution of animal instinct and emotional responses into what allows us to be connected emotionally to other beings, it is the basis for our compassion, our ability to take joy in other people’s actions (compersion), and is also where people usually demonstrate best that they are broken, mentally ill, or otherwise suffering.  Let me start with rational here, do not confuse rational for a lack of feeling, a lot of folks do this, the cold rational person is either truly suffering an underlying neuropathy or has simply been harmed socially enough to have withdrawn emotionally instead of seeing healthy growth over life into being more comfortable with feeling deeply. The healthy rational mind feels with breadth vs depth, often quoted in regards to this is “the good of the many outweighs the good of the one”. Likewise, the rational mind is also what I would consider to be a dis-associative personality trait instead of a grounded one.  Feeling people on the other hand put their natural social empathy towards the immediate with greater depth and thus are often very attached and grounded in the here and now more. A good example of the difference is that a feeling person will cry and feel deeply saddened by an event, where the deeply moved rational person is more prone to just weep, depth vs breadth. So rational and feeling are our baselines for how we prioritize social needs and existential threats as they apply to the social unit and not just the individual.  I feel I need to do more research here on the neuroscience, I have some good generic understanding, but I would like to get this more solidly connected to some good ole fashioned empirical data.

Expansionist vs Reductionist: (Still unsure of what I want to use, but that was not it, carry on) Trying these words out here and seeing how they fit (result: I hate them), this is my take on the Prospecting vs Judging function for people as a form of analysis and execution of decisions. The expansionist mind approaches a problem by looking at the branching possibilities, building up an understanding and making a tally as they go before coming to a decision and executing it.  The Reductionist approach looks at the problem in the here and now, figures out what context the decision needs to be made in and reduces down the background noise of their thoughts to execute a decision.  The expansionist or prospecting analysis, ever branching until the trunk is firmly defined from amongst the branches, is likewise what I consider a dis-associative personality and focuses on subjective context. The Reductionist/Judging analysis is more grounded in the here and now, in objective context.  And these can be easily confused, especially when dealing with an Introvert per Isabel Myers, the auxillary function as identified by Jung could be seen as very reductionist and grounded, but the Introvert has been hiding those ever expanding analysis, so folks may see a fairly grounded black and white decision out of the expansionist analytical process, but that is because they have been chewing on it for sometime.  In regards to personal growth, the expansionist thinker can learn tools to help prevent too much unnecessary analysis in the form of reducing down the options into a more concrete framework, such as an outline for writing (I need to use those more…). The Reductionist analytical process can learn the value of making sure they try and see other potential outcomes, brainstorming some ideas to help ensure they do not accidentally cause more harm than good if they miss a big picture moment or detail.  Oh before I forget, the definition of reductionist I am using is the reducing complex problems to more manageable or simple ones, which can be helpful in execution, especially in the face of an existential threat, but can be prone to over simplifying and missing the big picture.  So, both ways the mind analyzes data in regards to executing a decision are good approaches, the extremes are over thinking or over simplifying, but they find great balance in positive dichotomies such as the advisor and the leader, the thinker and the do’er, and we tend to devalue these things, which is a shame and leads to faulty context.

Sensory data input vs manipulation: This is my own category, that is a series of subcategories as well, but it is an important part of how any one person will think, and that is how we manipulate our sensory data.  If our rational/feeling social function is how we manipulate social data and understand it, then our Sensory data is part of how we augment and manipulate the data from our senses physical and objective point.  So sensory data input, how we take in our sensory view of objective reality is distinctly different from how we may manipulate it.  The empirically grounded sensory data is integrated into various ways of thinking consciously, but we are also able to naturally (and improve them through practice) manipulate sensory data.  And the difference in manipulation capability can be substantial.  Using myself as an example, I am my own best case study, as biased and subjective as it can be, it is useful and insightful, but I digress, I have fantastic ocular vision in a measurable way, at one point very proud of my 20/15 and 20/17 vision in each eye, called them pilot’s eyes since my father was a Naval aviator and he had good vision too.  Much to my anger for a very long time, I took for granted that folks might actually visualize things, unaware that I was what folks are calling these days “mindblind” and when I discovered I was deficient in college, oh my I was mad, angry, I felt so ripped off.  But as my blog points out, it is probably for the best, as it prevented me from retreating from the world as a result of complex PTSD, would not be writing this today I imagine had I been able to.  So, the ability to visualize has been connect to the ability to manipulate math in one’s head, sight reading sheet music, and some of the best examples are folks able to render from their own mind almost photo quality artistic endeavors, amazing stuff.  Likewise we can vary on our ability to manipulate auditory data, some hear the voices of the speakers in their heads, other hear their own voice with a change or cadence, and would not even rule out monotone conversations as a possibility.  Smell and taste I lump together, these are senses based on chemicals interacting with our nervous system, as a result I am unsure of just how much talent one can have in these categories, an area I need to investigate further, I know with a little conscious effort I can turn off an offensive smell after several minutes, so that is manipulating scent data in real time, but I am pretty sure my neurological system is still well aware of that scent, I have just compartmentalized it so as to not be a distraction, could be more a function of rating high in dis-associative qualities, being able to check out mentally has its advantages.  So, more room for me to explore there, writing this stuff helps identify these areas that are still half-formed hypothesis vs more structured and verified logic.  Finally, tactile senses, this get’s tricky, having experienced tactile hallucinations, the most extreme one being me reaching to feel my pulse on my neck, while very anxious after a stupid idea to experiment in college, I literally felt my fingers go into my neck, rest on my heart valve, I could feel the fluttering of the valve, I could feel the sticky warm blood, it was a pretty darn traumatic event. But it informs us on somatoform illness nicely in regards to my theory, so folks who are traumatized and damaged, who are dis-associative by nature could have a schizophrenic break, but if their auditory and visual functions are impaired enough, the result will be somatoform illness as a result of tactile hallucinations made manifest via the body’s own neurological connection to the mind, kinda crappy. But, the ability to manipulate tactile data is an interesting question, I would say I tend to translate visual data into kinetic/tactile data, but I do not seem to manipulate it much, and that might be because the body mind connection needs to maintain that definition between fantasy and reality more strongly than in a visual or auditory schizophrenic break.   Smell and Taste I believe would also apply to somatoform illness as well, but we know the brain can be tricked into smelling something different by using similar volatile organic compounds (I once convinced my wife, dog, and both cats I was cooking a hamburger, when I was using bread crumbs, egg, and ground coffee grounds, because roasted coffee gives off the same volatile organic compounds as the cooking red meat). or our brain will mix up tastes when we go to take a drink and we think it is something else.  These functions though, our ability to rely on how we manipulate or at least actively use our senses, are important in understanding how people think when we want to get down to the nitty-gritty.

Faulty Context Theory: So this is my baby, my life’s work and insight, taken from such a vast web of correlation and logic that, well I was frequently told I reached to far, I wanted to tackle to unwieldy of ideas, bah I say phooey to that, I will continue to shoot for the moon and if I miss, can’t say I did not try.  So, my work is a result of my ardent refusal, often subconsciously, but consciously as well to stop letting the current educational and academic system inhibit my ability to seek an understanding of humanity and the individual writ large and to identify why we have things like universal moral truths, which some would argue don’t exist, I am siding with Lao Tze and calling it morality as far as a healthy human who gets their baseline should. So, at the heart of faulty context is the notion of the over application of false dichotomies to how we understand the world subjectively and objectively.  Examples of false dichotomies I like to tackle are “masculine” vs “feminine”, I have a blog post already on this subject, the notion that gender is the result of faulty context in regards to there being more than one way of thinking inherently and then connecting these different inherent ways of thinking to sexual dimorphism, which is understandable, we do tend to see some inherent ways of thinking more apparent in certain sexes, but we also see differences in cultures and physical genotypes, it is a false dichotomy, based on a faulty understanding of context.  Gender is therefore an illusion based on a faulty understanding of how different people think and linking it to biological sex, when it has not connection to biological sex, and it a nurture factor not a nature factor in one’s sexual identity, which has an underlying natural trigger, it is not determinism, you can be a “feminine” man by current standards and still be quite hetero-normative in ones sexual behavior. So taking my new definition of personal context, that the inherent and the socio-cultural epistemologies must be known to communicate, we have a big problem.  Right now many folks have internalized faulty epistemologies and try to live by those ideals, ideals Susan Cain points out in Quiet began being marketed to us around 100 years ago.  To be successful one needs to be this, this, or this, etc.  When you view the world through men’s work and women’s work, instead of the many varied personalities, you force individuals in each of those gender roles to have to fight against or internalize the dominant paradigm as best they can, and this is damaging, especially to autistic minds who take more nurturing to achieve a solid sense of self identity.  Because we have a faulty context on how to teach, for example Piaget’s theory favors empirical thinking, we see individuals with Attention Deficit Disorder instead of a likely introverted and very logical mind, quite possibly brilliant and not as learning disabled as folks think, it is just maladpative to the current mainstream education model, in this case, a lack of proper understanding of a dichotomy seen in human Schema building, so not everything is based on false dichotomies. This can be fixed, and of course it not always horribly damaging if they have good home support or we make sure our public educational space can expand to better enable them to reach their full potential as well, a lot of charter schools now favor the logical thinker, these are good existing models to integrate on some level, effort over performance, unstructured self learning time, which will often look like play.  False dichotomies are best understood as rigid thinking from a black and white perspective, this form of empirical or often reductionist thinking has a survival function, but that survival function has held on long past it’s time in regards to other humans.  We need to clear the air to understand much of what we are seeing, and right now the world of the Introvert (solid example is the internet and reading) is fighting back for space against the dominant perceived desire for Extroversion, which is very silly, since as I state, the difference here is a metabolic function, so we need to make sure both have adequate space to thrive. The overstimulating world we live in is particularly dangerous to hypersensory folks, especially autistic children, we need to find a little balance here.  Likewise, right now, often seen in political discourse (The fact based empirically driven, faulty context ridden Fox News, or the faux News of John Stewart’s unrelenting logic and correlations that inform us of current events, which is it, comedy and current events news as satire) is a fight between logical and empirical thinkers, and we will continue to struggle until we see this as a bonafide biological baseline dichotomy that folks favor from birth, and that to communicate effectively we need to understand how other people think and learn.  We also need to de-obfuscate a lot of our current data, my posts on autism should be informative as to how we have gotten somethings pretty much backwards, not a lack of social skills, but intuition that sees the body language and facial expressions of folks easily and are damaged and confused when an in-authentic, or damaged, or non- self-actualized person lie to them, the body movement betrays them, the extremely logical can do these things fairly natural, empirical science now understands it as the science of micro-expressions, some folks come to it naturally and easily.  When you keep getting negative reactions when you call “bullshit”, well that child is probably going to end up harmed in someway, demeaned, devalued.  So my theory states that we will continue to traumatize, demean, devalue, and dehumanize people until we understand our personal inherent epistemology as well as humanity’s context. In a simple form, Faulty Context is the root of most trauma, miscommunication, and disharmony as we see it in the world today, based in part on cultural divides and in part on the devaluing of a natural and fundamental way of thinking that may be different from you, thus making us Aliens to each other.

Communications Parity: So, my communications parity equation, which I touched on already briefly is a pretty simple thing, you need to know how you are wired to think, your strengths, weaknesses, and areas of personal growth or trauma, just knowing these things give one power over how they learn and allows one to figure out where to find their joy in life.  If you also understand your cultural values (often without needing much thought) you can balance your options and choices against that. For example, the US is seen as extroverts, empirical thinkers, reductionist in their approach to life, rational and feeling both in good measure the feeling speaks very loudly), this general sense of the overall culture is informative in, say, engaging in globalized economic markets and the response to certain news. Individuals may not think the same way as the dominant culture, but when trying to make decisions, ones social and cultural norms certainly play a role in it.  If both sides know themselves well, inherently and socio-culturally, and they can communicate this difference, then you have parity and can facilitate a productive, honest, and mutually beneficial conversation, there may still be times when object reality and social considerations still prevent a compromise as well, but by and large, without false dichotomies obfuscating the truth, the parties should be able to come to a mutual understanding of each other at the very least that informs them of how they might get past other problems, where one might give a bit in exchange for taking a bit elsewhere, etc.  From a corporate and mass communications perspective, having folks who know their baseline, know their strengths, and are able to communicate the value of this difference, invaluable.

So the equation looks a bit like this: (Inherent + socio-cultural epistemologies) + context of communication understood on both sides = parity in communication. Yeah, still pretty math inept.

This was almost a facebook post…oops, too much

DISCLAIMER: This post is actually a Facebook response I felt got too long for that forum as it also ties back into things I have said already, but it shows a better structure to some of my thoughts, so it is useful.

My poor blog is a hideous mess of not half formed hypothesis, but logical correlations that are so freaking messy I have trouble sorting them out, which is why I blog them, more an open diary just in case object reality suddenly and permanently ends my stream of consciousness, which would be most unfortunate as I am just now getting to the most exciting part of my life.  Most of my focus is on human communication, the notion of finding parity in conversations between individuals and groups by understanding their ways of knowing things (epistemologies) and we have two sources for knowing things, one is the inherent way we are going to think at conception (I favor science here, but honestly the soul works just as well, fairly indicative of being useful to more than a few) and the other ways are Socio-cultural in origin, the shared knowledge, experience, traditions, and values of the society we are born into.  And right now, with no more room for different ways of thinking to escape, like the Puritans to the US, Mormons to Utah, etc (of course there was not any room to actually escape, de-valuing indigenous peoples coupled with disease artificially created a space), but today it is even harder, and the results are very bloody, but I digress, often actually. So, right now I am trying to integrate the work done by the folks who developed the Myers-Briggs test to understand what I call our baseline way of thinking, because many of us internalize the socio-cultural stuff to our detriment in what is usually an earnest effort to not cause disharmony, becomes a catch 22 often because of faulty context, what is lying behavior in one child is not in another, some body language is cultural, some is found in all humans, and some are natural to one way of thinking and different too another.  I avoided this stuff for years because I perceived psuedoscience, it is just solid logical deductive reasoning based on correlations and some empirical data. Currently, I am trying to integrate that model with a better understanding of the neuroscience currently around, such as breaking down metabolically why introversion and extroversion exist as we see it and why the strongest correlation is in the form of socialization, my theory has it as the result of a simple equation, I am bad at manipulating numbers and such, but I am decent at qualitative math equations, and a person in any given situation is taking in sensory data from their surroundings and processing it, data transmitted via human communication is both very complex and has a naturally high processing priority as a function of survival as a social creature, but there are other processes going on as well, and these are our closer to objective sensory inputs, sights, sounds, etc.

The extrovert can process data faster or at the same rate usually as it is taken in, intelligent extroverts take in a lot of data and process it in real time, and this might not just be intellect, their is intelligence behind a nurturer or an athlete as well. LIkewise, a “less”, how I dislike the word, intelligent extroverts may not take in as much data for some reasons, of course we call it “less” because it is a measure of value, we need our solid, here in the now, get crap down folks too and their focus and attention to detail, even if it is limited in scope compared to others, is fantastic human endeavor, and never “less” because of it.

The introvert takes in data faster than they can process it, this has no correlation to intellect, it is just a difference between the two, one can be of high intellect and need a tremendous amount of processing time because they suffer from hyper sensory conditions, in my case as a “high-functioning autistic” person as currently defined (i.e. abnormal and faulty and not just a different way of thinking being maladaptive to this time and place) and thus needs a lot of time and energy to process the data, something impossible to do if they are still taking in more data than they can process, it becomes a function of metabolism. In my case it becomes debilitating as a result of childhood complex PTSD, but currently autism spectrum kids and in the past for being so different become targets, de-valued, bullying, etc, and hypervigilance over inflates possibility, forcing a naturally disassociative personality type to be grounded in the here and now, forced to keep taking in all data, all threats, all social cues that are often just fake because so many folks have broken themselves just a little bit (or a lot) to fit the dominant socio-cultural ideals.  As someone who is not very good with visual or auditory manipulations when I broke, along the lines of a schizophrenic break, instead of visual or auditory hallucinations, you end up with somatoform illness, in a way tactile hallucinations, hypersensory by natural exacerbated through trauma in the form of hyper vigilance, what a freaking mess.

Anyhow, right now society can be pretty hostile, unintentionally, to some of the extreme logical thinkers, this is not unsurmountable though, but everything is so obfuscated, we are misinterpreting data as humans being faulty or broken and then try to medicate that difference in an earnest attempt (usually) to help people be happy in their lives, when what we really need to do, and it sounds so simple, but it is not because people are not able to readily identify faulty internalized ways of thinking and like any addiction, because it is, it hijacks your survival mechanisms, uses your own inherent way of thinking to find fault and devalue yourself and makes us think it is a critical part of who we are, when it is really the baggage, insecurity, and inability to communicate with other people.  Internalized self doubt, anger, fear, sadness, and even happiness that others might think in inappropriate (like wistfully smiling at a funeral as your remember a good time instead of the sad moment in the here and now) becomes twisted and warped when social creatures cannot use each other as sounding boards. Remember, no one person can take in all the data about object reality, much of our science can not even directly observe much of the universe, one individual, alone, unable to talk or share, well that world becomes twisted, you misinterpret things constantly, hyper vigilance may take over, or someone like myself may actually train themselves to reflect through body language and facial expressions non-genuine thoughts, someone who seems perfectly comfortable in who they are, but is so far away from that, they do not even realize for over 30 years, even with studying the subject casually but frequently, that they are autistic. I am thankful I broke compassionate, I took the martyr approach which seems very natural to me and internalized the harm, self punishment instead of harming others even when my repressed feelings exploded in irrational anger and rage, it was directed as I got older not at others save to push them away, the punishment came from myself to myself.

So, our success, as a species is a combination of being able to individually observe and infer from objective reality a subjective experience in the form of abstract thought.  But, it is brought to its greatest potential when we all room for all of our different ways of thinking to find joy and meaning in their endeavors, and not just be slaves to the grind because we have to subsist in a rigid system, that has many benefits too, just has failed to make enough room for everyone.  Ayn Rand was an empiricist, she saw honest benefit to humanity in her work, and I am repulsed viscerally by the notion of it. I do not de-value her thoughts, especially with her background and trials and tribulations.  But her ideal world, where progress and harmony seem to work like clockwork with noble producers, is a horrifying nightmarish hellscape to me. So how do we get past these impasses? Communication, and to do that an individual has to know their own inherent way of thinking and how it applies to their socio-cultural understandings, and then one needs the basic context on the person they are trying to communicate with, their culture and how they approach understanding object reality, we are all unique, even small variations in commonly seen mental operating systems combined with unique life experience makes it impossible to know everything about another, but if you know someone is logical or empirical, if they favor extroversion or introversion (good idea on where to have a meet and greet, a vibrant occasion or a subtle dinner for example), if they are prospecting (cautious/analytical thinkers) or judging (decisive thinkers), and even some other things, like if they are decent with visual data, then charts and graphs are a good thing (I can read, but I can’t remember what the heck they look like or how the data was visually recorded, I have to break it down mentally and translate it, so charts not a great way to sell me, personally an idea or show data, I would prefer to just read it or hear it verbalized).  Anyhow, we must make room for everyone, to prevent anyone from having to live in a dystopia, and my life has been an experience in dystopia, unwitting, unplanned, it crept up on us, the trauma sometimes outpacing progress, and right now, rightly so, I fear for the current cycle of trauma starting in earnest as people scream to be heard by those who cannot hear what they are saying, because with so many false dichotomies, with faulty context on how individuals and entire cultures think and view object reality, we cannot communicate right, we cannot hear each other, instead we hear the internalized ideals, that when someone like me points out flaws readily apparent too me, that I am attacking or de-valuing you, in my case it is the opposite, I want you to be successful, and if I can share some thoughts now that will prevent heartache or failure for you in the future, it would be immoral to me to not to try and share it, if I can. Sadly, I keep stretching myself too thin, my sense of urgency is too great, I am desperate for feedback, for validation, for rigorous debate, because humanity has to find it’s context, holism from the anthropological perspective cannot be just a pipedream, we must progress, strive, and dare to find out personal context and context as a species, and when we do, it is a whole new ballgame folks, it could be something truly wonderful. Hope is not yet lost, but we are in exciting but dark times, fighting for a voice, fighting for space, fighting for understanding, when we have to stop fighting long enough to listen, to at least attempt to understand and forgive, as well as forgive ourselves.  We must be able to trust each other again, to understand we are of the same species, that we are social creatures (some more than others) who do our best, only when we work together and stop de-valuing difference.

I have to take the kiddo to the pumpkin festival, or else I would edit this better, hope I did not miss too many connecting thoughts.

Context and some feeling..oops nope, almost a darn book.

Alrighty, I am not feeling just cerebral tonight, had several intense conversations today, and though I am certainly glad I found the faulty internalized bullshit in my cranium, it has sadly reset my operating system in a few ways, and now I have to rebuild a great deal of cognitive constructs to properly function in civil society. Which means, at the moment I still tend to over intellectualize or I tend to be almost violently overzealous in my ability to finally speak my mind and not just be stuck mute, ineffective, and simmering with internalized rage.  So, while I view this as a healthy transition point, having a temper tantrum and visibly shaking while trying to articulate the expansive nature of what I am trying to say is not so useful; borderlines on being intimidating. This is bad communication and is certainly not something my friends deserve, little too much earnestness and feeling, or too little, gotta get that happy medium going; for example, I have decided not to care about grammar as much, I can do the academic assertive crap and avoid vernacular if I need too, but as someone who is naturally analytical and cautious, it feels like I am lying to not use a great deal of passive voice, because I am presenting a theory, a large logical construct based on my understanding and integration of other ideas and theories, it is not yet substantiated with a tremendous amount of empirical data, because the purpose of the theory is to spin off hypothesis, compare them then to existing empirical data to look at it through a new filter, and to also create new hypothesis to be tested.

So now I want to take a look at some of the shortcomings of the current system, In US academia the logical is too often discarded and disregarded due to an institutionalized preference for empirical thinking and data.  But the two approaches are both vastly valuable, to devalue one and over value another is a waste of human endeavor. When people learn and build schema the way their brain is wired to do, when they know what brings them joy and seek it out, when they understand themselves from a biologically hardwired perspective specific to them, their endeavors are fantastic, inspired, genius in their own way, be it athleticism, logical theories and thoughts, solid empirical cognitive structures of great worth. So to even begin to truly tap human potential we need to stop devaluing difference and embrace it and let people utilize their strengths, whatever that may be, and the dominant social paradigms need to make room for these differences to flourish and make a living and stop labeling a misunderstanding and forcing us to internalize it as a fault.

Let me give some personal context here, in the case of someone like me, that internalizing conflicting socio-cultural ideologies become extremely damaging, I will admit to being an exceptionally frail inherent thinker, since someone like me must have context to understand something, when we are forced to internalize something without context, we have a big problem, it fundamentally inhibits my ability to discern object reality (as best as one can) and separate fantasy, the two blur, and that causes great harm, you end up with a child afraid of everything, who even until almost 13 years old was still afraid of vampires, werewolves, and cujo’s second cousin, they all had the same weight, I could not discern a difference other than dogs being the most likely threat, all the other options were a possible reality, my world was hell, my life was fear, and if I could have visualized in my head I would be long gone, disconnected from object reality as much as possible to chase the joy in my thoughts and ideas. But the sad thing is, someone of my inherent epistemology, my less common operating system, raised in the right culture, the right household, can in fact grow up just freaking fine, the damage done to me and others like me, is a tragic lack of communication, it is not evil intent, it is not someone’s fault because according to my faulty context theory, we cannot effectively communicate if we cannot truly, and I mean truly understand that we can be aliens to each other, that we think and manipulate data in some fundamentally different ways.  It is a tragedy, because I know the massive effort my parents put into understanding and communicating with me, but they did not have my context, I was labeled as faulty, defective, broken, and I have a laundry list of labels that I became, I internalized them, it was all my fault, and as someone inherently exceptionally logical as well as rational and over analytical, the vast amount of my intellectual rigor, which is substantial, was then subconsciously and then consciously turned against itself, a horrific act of metaphorical psychic self mutilation, spending decades literally trying to destroy fundamental aspects of who I am, having falsely identified myself as being overly feeling, having a problem with feelings and emotions, that rationalizing is unhealthy, I must never trust rationalizing, it must be destroyed for it is a symptom of the trauma I knew I had suffered…it is tragic beyond words, minds like mine become self-traumatizing. When you realize just how much we seek harmony, how much we hate lying, but we learn to avoid eyes because when we reflect it back, we get in trouble, when we avoid the eyes it is taken as a sign of guilt though, and then we get to go pick our willow switch because since we are showing signs of “lying” we are guilty, people so often assume guilt before innocence, and then damaged or maladaptive people such as I, stop trusting authority, we stop asking for help, we shut things out and stop communicating, because no one fucking understood what we are like, that we would not ever want to lie, it is why we reflect back what we see written in the creases of your brow, your posture, the set of your jaw, but always and forever with the greatest intensity, what we read in your eyes and surrounding muscles. But when we reflect back inauthenticity, when we so easily see and understand you are lying to us, even when you think it is for our own good, you are causing harm, and when we call the bullshit, especially if you cannot see it yourself, you react with great intensity, sadness, anger, it causes you harm, we do not ever want to cause anyone fucking harm, so we become natural victims, we begin to accept our fate, we martyr ourselves while all the while tearing apart our own psyche trying to figure out why we are broken, when we are not, we are just different, and when we are allowed to question and get answers with more depth than “just because” and “Because I told you”, we are learning, and it seems intimidating because we easily parrot back ideas and concepts the dominant current social paradigms deem beyond us, and sometimes we get noticed, labeled as gifted, if our native intellect is good enough (in my case cannot escape a warped view of reality, no matter how hard I tried and I did, so many years, for so long I fucking tried to escape), we stand a chance of making it through, even severely impaired and damaged by the failure of the dominant inherent epistemologies in control of our cultural direction to get our context.  I do not have an “attention disorder” for example, I have an extremely active and logical mind that does not do it best learning and building of schemas by being forced to learn something via an A,B,C,D approach, it is actually inhibitory to me, you retard my potential and growth by forcing too much of it. I am not saying I cannot put some effort and work into getting some important A,B,C,D structures, but that type of learning is exhausting, you can direct my understanding of it through by allowing my thoughts to wander, to let me play and toy around with the ideas, by simply and earnestly communicating why this is important, but your message is not going to be heard if you do not understand my context so you can successfully communicate.

The damage that has been done to me is, profoundly tragic, and it may be hard to truly believe some people, such as me, are born atheists.  This does not mean I am going to grow up an atheist, but I will never take anything just on faith, I must have the context, and if I am forced to internalize a notion of God for example, and I am unaware for sometime that others do not believe the same things, I have no context, it becomes truth to me, but it is at that time a virus.  But if an autistic mind is given some broader context, that not all people believe the same or in anything divine at all, if you communicate the values and importance of it from your perspective to ours, we can over time find our own way to relating and understanding, but we must find that path on our own, with guidance, it cannot be forced on us. We are not letting the devil in, we are not “possessed”, we are not insane or violent due to a flaw, when you force us to internalize what to us is unknowable, you have caused great harm. And you can see these behaviors expressed in our extreme frustration, our violent out bursts, head banging, biting behaviors, explosive temperaments, and what you are seeing, is a child who cannot communicate with you, everything we try to say seems to fall on deaf ears or elicits a visceral reaction, or most tragically of all truly causes you pain…it is the frustration of those, who have no authentic voice, because those around us do not understand our context, hear and interpret what we say through their own mental filters and misinterprets the data, we become liars, know-it-alls, faithless heathens, disrespectful…the list goes on and on, and by our very nature, we will not self advocate, because we learn it never goes well, so it is desirable to shut everyone else out, being an ultimate skeptic you cannot trust or believe what others say, but because you internalized the unknown and are faulty as well you cannot trust your own logic, your own mind is the enemy, reality does not make sense, and you send us to hell, the minute you start judging us and forcing us to fit a mold that is not natural to the way our brains are neurologically wired, and I mean that, you, with no intent to cause harm, often with the best of intentions, send us to hell, and we are our own keepers, no one is better capable at punishing us, than ourselves.  So when I got my mouth washed out with soap and bite a huge chunk out and chew it, that is not defiance, that is me…punishing myself, because once again, I was bad, once again I caused pain or disharmony, I punish myself with unrelenting vigor.  People need to truly understand, even those of us extremely disassociated from object reality, we are not broken, we are not faulty, we are simply different, but we are fragile, our minds are prone to breaking easily, mental illness is a side effect of being unable to get our context and our inability to figure out what we internalized that is mucking up the works, and this does not just apply to the rare personality types, if your inherent epistemology is at odds with your family’s dominant one, or your parents are also already damaged themselves through forced internalization and vigorously impose the same internalized crap on you, then we have a problem, we have mental illness, and we need to clear the air and get each other’s personal context, because if we can, we can get down to a proper baseline, we have obfuscated our data and as a result have faulty conclusions based on a faulty understanding of a person’s inherent context and how it intersects with our social ways of knowing and learning, we must make room for the differences, we cannot keep forcing people into a mold.  We can see this represented in the battle over ownership of a persons own gender, the dominant social paradigm favors certain inherent epistemologies, an American male should be ideally extroverted, empirical, rational, and assertive/quick to act, it is flexible enough to handle a few variations off this ideal, but it vastly favors those grounded well in the here and now, the empiricist dominated social paradigm favors being observant, attentive to detail, focused and on task in an ideally quantifiable way. The further a males inherent epistemology is from this, the more we are targeted and devalued, my desire for harmony makes me overly sensitive and feeling, I become a loser, a wuss, and all that I really am, is at this time, in that place, in that cultural context, simply maladaptive to the dominant social paradigm because of nothing more than my fundamental way of thinking is different.  And the less grounded one is, the more our “heads are in the clouds”, the less masculine we become, and often that confusion becomes labels and people will call someone a “fag” or other emasculating words, which in truth may have little to no actual basis in our sexuality at all, but damn when we internalize that we sure as shit have some gender dysphoria issues going on, thanks again for that….sorry, that was sarcastic, it is a tragedy, it is not fault. But, it took me a long time to nail down my notion of who I am in relation to the gender polemic, I denied myself things that very naturally are enjoyable and comforting to me, and not “girly” we confuse different ways of thinking with our faulty idea of how the other sex thinks. In my case, I was raised later in life around a lot of gays, lesbians, and a “big brother” who was so flaming we joked about it and I chased him around the house with a lighter (miss ya bro, lost ya too soon), and that allowed me to be comfortable with that fact that, no, I am not gay or even particularly sexual at all, but in many ways I internalized that I was somewhat a “girl” so I sought out to destroy that, I began to disdain any public reflections of things folks might call…cute, I like cute, the world is hell for me as a child remember? it is scary as hell, so yeah, things that are safe, non-offensive, and bring comfort? damn important too me, do not take the things that anchor me and bring me comfort, do not take these things away from me, because if someone like me is damaged, I need them, so I can think of that story about the “red boots”, we really do need our stability, we need to be able to discern fantasy from reality, which means we need to be taught in a scientific way, we need the facts and context, we need to observe or at least infer the existence of things, forcing us to do otherwise, is to sentence us to a possible eternity (to us), in hell.

If you are grasping the gravity of this at all, if you can understand that much of what we call even laziness is in fact the expression of either underlying neuropathy, trauma, or being maladaptve and thus bullied and forced to internalize alien thought processes through punishment, derision, shaming, marketing, and propaganda, the result is mental illness, but we have confused it, and we continue to try and treat difference with medications to make us more like others (once again credit to L. Ron Hubbard, whether ya believe the rest or not, he saw this quiet clearly), to balance us (when we may prefer naturally moderation via extremes), it informs us, through our own inherent way of thinking about the objective reality we live it, it has meaning, it is difference, not necessarily fault or damage, but we cannot know, until people utilize, implement, and understand the truly diverse and beautiful ways we all learn, find value, and find happiness in life. Even when you do not get why someone finds joy, if you can at least get that folks really do inherently have differences in how we perceive and understand reality, then we have a more rounded socio-cultural worldview, that allows for greater self-determination for different ways of thinking, that allows everyone to follow their joy, contribute meaningfully, and expand their understanding of things, that they can find the meaning in their life in balance with the way they naturally think and the way society learns and values things.  As tragic as this seems though, it also gives us hope, so many humans are finding their voices and joining together, but sometimes we get lost screaming at each other, trying to intimidate, to bully each other into understanding what to us seems so obvious, so very plain to see, “how can you not see God’s hand in everything?” is an honest question from someone who can feel and believes firmly in the spiritual, but my response is equally valid “How can you not see natural forces at work?” for I have trouble putting the notion of the divine into context, that does not mean my thinking is right or wrong or someone else’s ardent belief is wrong, until we force each other to internalize something damaging to how we fundamentally think, so then you end up with “Religious Trauma Syndrome” or other problems, and the sad part is, it did not have to be, but because neither side could achieve parity in communication because we simply have failed to understand just how truly alien each of our worldviews can be, we keep miscommunicating, we get frustrated, we shout, we shake our fists, and when we cannot take anymore, the masses act violently, a group think temper tantrum bred from intense frustration over constantly having one’s thoughts and ideas fall of ears that are always mishearing.  And though I framed some of this through my own understanding of trauma, complex ptsd, gender issues, and notions of the divine, we can see the expressions of these frustrations everywhere, with varying degrees of violence.  The genius of Gandhi and Martin Luther King, jr. (who I have always been proud to share a birth date with) was to try to redirect the anger into actions that, though are very emphatic, very potent, favor de-escalation and reconciliation over violent outbursts of frustration. I can find parity to a degree in the thoughts of Arthur Janov and primal scream therapy, the value of it can be seen, and though childhood trauma may only be an effect of being simply unlucky enough to have a maladaptive metaphorical operating system, but in the words of the great Tears for Fears, there is certainly value for those of us fighting everyday against our inherent nature to just function in a society that does not get and value us, hell yes “Shout, shout, let it all out”.

Ok, I have written over 3000 words in this, I am pretty sure this is umm exceptionally long, but it is solid thinking, it gives people some of my context so they can identify some of my own biases better as well as understand where I am coming from and how I think and view the world.  Faulty context theory in essence states, that we have failed to understand each other’s natural and innate differences, that no society has successfully yet integrated in a healthy way all the truly different ways folks can think, that some of us, right here and right now, are denied our own idea of liberty and our search for happiness is inhibited, and we are being selected against, because many us finally decide, life is not worth living, it is hell, so many people who should have made it, didn’t, because when you believe you are the problem, then you can “help” the people around you, by no longer being able to harm them, too many great logical and rational minds are removing themselves from the equation, be it withdrawing from the world, seeking solace in drugs and alcohol to the point of dependency, or suicide or just self harm and destructive acts, the will to live becomes suppressed and it becomes easy to put oneself in dangerous and compromising situations, or even worse…we break bad and no longer have anything to lose, and then such great harm befalls others, the trauma becomes viral and is passed on in a social sense, a meme ala Richard Dawkins takes on a sinister form, and the result is a cycle of trauma, mental illness, and harm.  We must learn to understand our differences, we must forgive ourselves and each other for a tragic mistake, and we must make a conscious effort to stop inflicting more trauma, we will never get harmony from inflicting more disharmony, even if we eliminate the external “threat” we harm ourselves, our brothers and sisters in arms (IYAAYAS in my case, and yeah that is a specific reference to my Air Force days, oh yeah….I served in the military, disabled non-combat veteran) return with deep and lasting trauma and scars on them as well, the cycle perpetuates, it continues, we must admit our fears, be brave enough and principled enough to let people know our subjective understanding of an objective universe is different, but damn it, difference is not bad, as long as one can take personal care of themselves and can function as a social creature, we are not damaged, just different.