Filed under: brave new world | Tags: Bertrand Russell, self denial, torture
When your creed is cruel, you become cruel. Creeds include any form of fundamentalism that demands austerity, self denial etc.: market (today’s worst), religious, racial, sexual, etc.
When your creed is human you behave like a human. No pain, gain.
The ascetic depreciation of the pleasures of sense has not promoted kindliness or tolerance, or any of the other virtues that a non-superstitious outlook on human life would lead us to desire. On the contrary, when a man tortures himself he feels that it gives him a right to torture others, and inclines him to accept any system of dogma by which this right is fortified.
Bertrand Russell, Ideas That Have Harmed Mankind
If you don’t want anyone to know where you are buried and you have a lot of trustworthy henchmen:
Periander (628-588 BC): Like Thales, Solon and Chilon, Periander of Corinth was considered one of the Seven Sages of Greece. To others, like Aristotle, he was simply a tyrant. However, there is a bizarre story about the lengths to which Periander went in order to conceal his place of burial: he instructed two young men to meet a third man at a predetermined place and kill and bury him. Then he arranged for four men to pursue the first two and kill and bury them. Then he arranged for a larger group of men to hunt down the four. Having made all these preparations, he went out to meet the two young men for he, Periander, was the third man.
The Book of Dead Philosophers, Simon Critchley
Filed under: brave new world, departure lounge | Tags: Hofstede, power distance index
Hofstede’s Power distance Index measures the extent to which the less powerful members of organizations and institutions (like the family) accept and expect that power is distributed unequally. This represents inequality (more versus less), but defined from below, not from above. It suggests that a society’s level of inequality is endorsed by the followers as much as by the leaders.
My notes on power distance based on the chart below:
small power distance / large power distance
power: controlled by law / uncontrolled by law
children: equals / obedient
elders: neither respected nor feared / respected and feared
education: student centered / teacher centered
hierarchy: regarded cynically / accepted as natural
subordinates: expect respect / expect orders
government: plural, democratic, peaceful / autocratic, manipulative
corruption: rare, consequential / common, hidden
income distribution: even / uneven
religion: stress equality / hierarchical
Wikipedia, Hofstede, Power Distance Index