The Wisdom of Solomon (and some others)
by Steve Solomon

    The apparency is that in the country of the blindthe one-eyed man is king. The actuality is that in the country of the blind, theone-eyed man had better keep his mouth shut.

    The apparency is that God is infinitely forgiving. The actualityis that God has the infinite capacity to be forgiven.

    A learning experience is what we say after everything wentwrong and we failed. When everything went right we don't call it a learning experience;we call it a success.

    The official denial confirms the rumor.

    Only the lead dog sees new scenery.

    When small men cast long shadows the sun is going down.

    Sympathy equals empathy plus contempt.

    The only thing I am entitled to in all of Life is a chanceto survive--if I am quick and strong.

    A system to create a really effective hospital where peopleget well fast, would be: once a week, the doctors choose the patient who has beenthere the longest with the least optimistic prognosis for recovery. This person iswheeled out into the courtyard, tied to a stake against the wall, snare drums rollloudly, and the worst sickie in the place is summarily executed by firing squad (whilemost of the rest of the patients look out their windows).

    The way to have a really effective mental hospital is todo the same thing: but executions happen one each day, Sunday's off. Oh! . . . andonce a year the patients get to select by secret ballot one of their "therapists"for execution.

    The apparency: If you're not part of the solution, you'repart of the problem. The actuality: If you even think there's a solution, you'repart of the problem.

    The apparency: Taxes are required to create civilization.The actuality: Taxes are the proof that we have failed to create civilization.

    Government seems important to a people to the degree thatit takes away their production in taxes. Correlary: The more the government takesthe larger proportion of a people work for the government. Correlary: Without waror threat of imminent danger the government can't take a very large proportion ofa people's production in taxes. Correlary: Without war or threat of imminent danger,government is not important. Correlary: Without war or the threat of imminent danger,the government will creat them.

    When peeling The Onion layer by layer, you have to shed alot of tears.

    The apparency: You can't step into the same river twice.The actuality: you can't step into the same river once.

    I am rarely if ever lonely: Trapped within my own mind isall the company a person could ever want to get rid of.

    The apparency: Politics is the art of the possible. The actuality:Politics is the art of making the impossible seem possible--and getting fools topay you to try.

    "We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.We are Spiritual Beings having a human experience." Teilhardde Chardin

    Great dying words: "I do not regret the journey. Wetook risks; we knew we took them. Things have come out against us. Therefore we haveno cause for complaint." Captain Scott's journal, writtenwhile freezing to death in the Antarctic.

    Life is a journey best taken with little baggage.

    A philosophic scale is a graphic representation of possiblestates or conditions from highly desirable to most undesirable. Thus philosophicscales are very useful aids to understanding. L. Ron Hubbard codified the best onesI know of, such as the Emotional Tone scale, the Know-To-Mystery Scale, and etc.The Quality of Life scale is my own discovery. From bottom to top it goes: in hiding(various forms of non-beingness that seem to opt one out of danger); victimization(both sides of this game); melodrama (ordinary human emotion and reaction at play);high drama (almost inevitably in this Universe, tragedy); and at the top, adventure.

    Ethics versus Morals. Ethical behavior may be defined asacting after thinking about what would produce the greatest good for the greatestnumber effected. Morals are a codification of prior ethical decisions, simplifiedinto easy-to-grasp rules. Morals exist because most people are very uncomfortablewith the uncertainties of attempting to figure out what the right course of actionmight be, and most and are reluctant to take responsibility for having made mistakes.Being ethical means making decisions based on inadqeuate data and acting anyway.Ethical actions frequently work out badly; the actor has no one to blame for theresults but themselves. Acting ethically while still desiring certainties means beinguncomfortable. Moral acts also often work out badly. The apparent advantage to beingmoral is that when a moral act works out badly no one is to blame because the actordid what was supposed to be done. Being moral is comfortable because a moral personalways knows what should be done, did it and is not to blame for the outcomes.

    Here's another way to say just about the same thing. If onewanted a way to evaluate the worth of an individual, it could be done by measuringhow much uncertainty a person could tolerate. Most people can't tolerate much uncertaintyat all and will create things to be certain about rather than stand with one footon a banana peel and the other firmly planted in mid-air.

    This one introduces a character I call "Everybody.""Everybody" is a person just like everybody else. Now, to get on with it:The ability to disagree may be the most important ability a person could have. I'mnot completely certain if its the most important. But certainly this abilityis important. Everybody has some firmly held convictions they're quite entirely certainabout. And Everybody is going nowhere but slowly downhill as a spiritual being. Butdespite slowly worsening, Everybody remains quite certain they are entirely rightabout just about everything. If you go into agreement with Everybody, you'll go nowheretoo. So the single most important thing a person can be able to do is to disagreewith every Everybody, no matter how hard agreement is being enforced. The main obsticalto disagreement is getting through infancy and childhood without being forced intoagreement with one's parents, peers and the Authorities in charge of your indoctrination.

    Another essential ability is the ability to Know. Especiallyto Know who you are. And Know other things as well. You don't Know by finding out.You just Know. Its a skill in that arena defined as "be still and Know."Either you've got it or you ain't. Knowing is a big help toward disagreeing.

    The Christian Soul is an immortal, little nut-like thingthat resides next to the heart. A Christian is a human made in God's image (but whorarely acts at all god-like because they are certain that God is infinitely biggerthan they are) who has been charged by God with a lifetime duty to care and cultivatetheir Soul. The Soul belongs to God, not the person within whose body it resides.It is the duty of every good Christian to guard their soul, to protect it from experiencingthe various sins the person might wish to commit, so that when the person dies, theSoul in their charge may return to God, from whence it came. If the Soul's guardiandoesn't refrain from sin, their Soul will go to hell. The thing I don't get hereis why a person should care, since they're not the soul.

    Considering the options, self-employment is far superiorto employment, but my real choice has always been comfortable unemployment.

    Health begins in the soil; healing begins with hygiene;liberty begins with freedom.

    The apparency is, that an "open-minded" persongives every viewpoint unbiased consideration. But I've never succeeded at convincingan "open-minded" person of anything. Give me instead a person with firmopinions, anytime! I'd prefer encountering someone with firmly held views that conflictwith my own. At least this person can make up their mind. Someone who can "make"their mind, can change their mind. In actuality, open-mindedness is one of two phenomena:either someone with nothing at all between the ears, so that all thoughts merelygo in one earhole and out the other, or, an "open minded" person is onewho gives the ideas and viewpoints of others no reality whatsoever.

    If you live for having it all, what you have is never enough.If you live for doing it all, what you have done was never enough. If you live forbeing it all, what you are at the moment is enough.

    Questions that carry foregone conclusions on the face ofthem write the questioner down an ass . . . . Dr. John Tilden, Appendicitis,1901.

    Evil comes often to a man with money; tyranny comes surelyto him without it. Louis L'Amour, The Walking Drum.

    I once met a man named Mr. 'Nertia, who was so lazy he wouldn'teven stop working once he had begun.

    A father walked into the bathroom to discover his 14 yearold son reading a pornographic magazine while practicing the manly art of self-abuse.'Son!' he pleaded, 'Don't do that! If you keep it up you'll go blind.'
    'But Dad,' the young man protested, it feels so good! SupposeI keep doing it until I get to the point that I need glasses. Then I'll do it lessoften.'
    So it is with all our bad habits.

    "The water will never clear up 'til you get the hogsout of the creek." Jim Hightower, Texas politician.

    Concerning prominent, well-known personalities currentlyin the public eye: Shit rises to the top; sometimes it sinks to the bottom.

    The apparency is that time heals all wounds. The actualityis that time conceals all wounds.John Dalmas, The Scroll of Man.

    People have very bad memories: we always estimate our capacityto make future efforts based upon our present condition, rarely considering thatour present condition may not be our future condition. In other words, when we feel"down," everything seems impossible.

    People have very poor memories: we generally believe thatwhatever we think and feel NOW is what we always thought and felt. And always willthink and feel.

    Academic education never made a stupid person become intelligentbut it often makes intelligent people become much stupider. The stupid who graduatebecome, as the Spanish say distainfully, instruidos, not genuinely, educados.

    "Look at a man the way that he is, he only becomes worse.But look at him as if he were what he could be, and then he becomes what he shouldbe."Goethe.