You heard me. You already believe in God. Atheism is logically impossible. Why? Because the definition of God is so broad and wide-reaching that it is essentially impossible to disbelieve. If you live in the modern West, you cannot exempt yourself from this, unless perhaps if you are: 1. a traditional Buddhist (no, shitty individualized English sutra-recitation doesn’t count), 2. a real nihilist (of whom there are very few), or 3. a radical ultra-skeptic (you do not qualify for this title if you browse Reddit or watch Rick & Morty).
So what’s a decent definition of God? Let’s start with what the Bhagavad Gita says:
“I am the goal of life … I am the beginning, the staying, and the end of creation … I am what is and what is not.”
“There is no truth superior to Me. Everything rests upon Me, as pearls are strung on a thread.”
We can see here at least four things identifiable with God: the purpose of life, the entirety of the universe, Existence itself, and Absolute truth. What does this mean for atheism? It means that if you believe in any of these things, you believe in God. This is not something that most people can choose to disbelieve in. Although there are many who claim that human life has no meaning, there are few who are willing to say that the universe has no origin, that Existence does not exist, or that truth is not truth. Western atheism is, fundamentally, not about belief or disbelief but about definitions. If you believe that there is existence, you must believe in God.
Hello, no one. You haven’t missed me, but I have certainly missed [sharing stuff with] you! I am back, and probably I am here to stay.
You might have read an old anime review from me many years ago. Or you might be loitering around because of my Ping Pong soundtrack download (by the way, that show is still the best anime ever made). Perhaps you’re lacking in your consumption of strange opinions on the internet, in which case you’ll find my blog to be an interesting read. If you’re looking to hear a diverse and fresh voice, maybe you will find it here.
I won’t be writing much about anime or video games this time. What really interests me nowadays is classical philosophy, medieval history, esoteric theology, politics, and the pursuit of a good and virtuous life.
Why have I decided to start this up again? Not because I have any novel opinions to share with you — really, I don’t. Most of what I will talk about can be summed up by a few key authors synthesized together in interesting ways and applied to the particularly weird world we live in, which suffers from all sorts of modern diseases. The reason I am writing to you is because my world has changed, my ideas have changed, and I see not much public representation of these ideas, especially not by eloquent people. Friends, acquaintances, and random drunk people I meet at parties enjoy hearing me talk, so I hope that this particular type of person is satisfied by what I write.
My name is Theodore Kong, and I’m a layabout with a Bachelor’s degree in Medieval History and Applied Mathematics. I invite you to take a look at whatever I happen to write in these next few months!
Isn’t there something wrong with the fact that people like Chris Rock can simultaneously argue for diversity at the Oscars while making racist jokes at the expense of Asian people?
If an Asian man had brought three little black children to the stage during the Oscars instead of three little Chinese children, wouldn’t that have made you uncomfortable?
Don’t you think it’s funny how people shudder at the idea of making racist jokes against black people, but jokes against Asians are still considered perfectly acceptable in polite society?
Chris Rock will get away with his casual racism. After a few weeks, no one will remember any of this. No one will recall the pain that Asian-Americans felt during the Oscars. Why is this? Because no one, not even your white and black liberal friends, not even your non-Asian girlfriend or boyfriend or spouse, cares or understands anything about Asian-American issues.
Are you an Asian-American liberal Democrat? Aren’t you tired of all of this? Please consider the following points:
The widespread criticism of Jaden Smith tweets on social media like Facebook, Reddit, and Quora attests to a huge, unresolved hypocrisy in modern internet discourse. It’s insane how people who have never touched a work of classical literature in their lives have the nerve to throw insults at an innocent 16-year old who has, in all honesty, performed much more introspection and self-reflection than any of they have from their cozy, philosophical armchairs.
“night at the colosseum”
fried snacks and oil from a greasy pan,
booze trapped in containers far from home,
at night the windows shine bright with light,
as he reads on but remembers none.
at the gymnasium he strives to meet,
an image captured in statues and ideals,
yet he destroys and he steals with a band of friends:
in a life of brattish violence.
he’ll never see the bigger picture,
a life beyond his home,
for in his heart he’ll always be
a hooligan from Rome.
Saint Ambrose was the first man
To read for himself
In years long ago,
There was a man just like me,
Lost in a great sea
Wintry mists away,
A lumbering beast awakens,
Greeting the sun with a yawn.
What does it mean for something to be faithful to the original work? Producing a faithful adaptation involves more than just copying the precise happenings of a story. It’s about capturing the spirit of the original work. And unfortunately, Madhouse does an injustice to Hitoshi Iwaaki’s original manga, transforming the story from a classic horror story to a new age science fiction action anime.
As you might have guessed, I really like Don Hertzfeldt’s couch gag. I enjoy how deeply unsettling it is, dragging a 20-second couch gag into a long 2 minute demonstration of grotesque and absurd animations. Hertzfeldt turns Homer, Lisa, and Bart into caricatures of themselves who are only capable of saying bastardized catch phrases like “D’oh!”, “Don’t have a cow, man,” and “I am Lisa Simpson”. Maggie, who has very little personality at all in the show, simply becomes a vehicle for advertising Simpsons merchandise, and the entire kitchen-cube scene here seems to indicate that the quality and integrity of the Simpsons TV show will only decrease over time, eventually reaching such a low point as to become the absurd repetition of catch phrases. (On a side note, I dislike how Marge says “Praise the dark lord of the twin moons” — the line sounds cheesy and detracts from what Hertzfeldt has already presented.)
The future Homer then realizes that he “has memories,” and the couch gag launches into what is, in my opinion, the best part. We see Homer look back into post-modern snippets of “future” Simpsons episodes, each of which contain quintessential Simpsons themes. We see a robotic Homer and Marge standing on metallic stilts standing quietly on a jagged mountain range. Although robotic, the couple is still in touch with their core humanness, and Marge touches Homer and says, “Still love you, Homer,” a theme which is mirrored in many present-day episodes of the show. In the next scene, the Simpsons family is reduced to yellow, single-celled organisms, fluttering in a sea of liquid as if in a cohesive bacterial colony, declaring that they “are happy family.” Finally, in the far future, Homer and Marge are both warped into alien-like entities incapable of traditional speech, but even then they retain their fundamental selves. As the warped Marge Simpson speaks, a message appears on the screen: “I will never forget you.” — and as the two figures disappear, first Marge and then Homer, into an endless black void, Hertzfeldt beckons us to consider how meaningful such the promise can be.
Finished pondering, Homer looks at his family once again. The promise was broken. With the family reduced to robotic, characterless parrots only capable of talking in catch phrases, they have already forgotten Homer and themselves. Realizing this, Homer concludes the scene with a mournful “D’oh.”
This song is awesome. It’s catchy, has a lovely music video, and it’s philosophical. Watch it and share your thoughts.
“Common World Domination” is a modernist narrative about the fruitlessness of material obsessions. You can see this right from the beginning with the motif of the skeletons collapsing, which represents how no creature can escape from returning to skeletal dust. Meanwhile, the band-aid motif represents the superficial and artificial ways in which people try to escape from their problems. The narrator (whom I’ll just call “Miku”) is a classic modern intellectual filled with apathy and the burdens of consciousness, who compares and contrasts herself with “you”, the viewer.