20231201

Edinburgh; Abe's early-bday-celebration trip

I am at a long table in a bright window-clad room. The latest beta of Umami Friends is going down to my right. The other half of the crew is off filming with Abe for his celebration project.

I am pleased. :)

Some things I said last night

  • Since you asked: you can help me (in the aftermath of my autism diagnosis) by making sure your invitations to me (to conversations, to events, to shared presence, to anything) are genuinely and consciously offered, and that they are meant for me as I am, to the very best of your knowledge

  • I love everyone the same. "Friend" might mean something different to me than it does to you. Y'all are my friends, but I think that might just mean that I know more things about you, and that we share more history. It's not that I love you more than a non-friend. My friendship with you might be different than your friendship with me.

  • Feels strange to say this, but thank you for hurting with us. I wouldn't ever wish that experience upon you, but since it's yours, I'm grateful that you allow it here, and that you don't try to check it at the door.

Pay attention to any friction in loading the game

I've taken to describing our pattern of iteration as loading, playing, and saving the game. I talk a lot about how to save the game. I haven't talked a ton about the loading part.

Realized a couple days ago that friction in loading ("this part's annoying", "this part wasn't detailed well", "this part is hard to load into my brain") is how we get better at understanding what needs to be saved. A game that's saved effectively can be loaded effectively, and we don't learn what's really needed at load-time until we get around to loading. Remember the hard parts of loading, and be kind to your future-self (and maybe lovingly apologetic to your past-self) when saving the current round.

Gratitude is a tacit acceptance of a thing into your personal timeline

Getting stoned makes me a terrible programmer. My short-term memory goes out the window. But, that effect makes philosophy even more fun than it usually is. :D We live in a fractal, and zero short-term memory means I get to ride its curves without subconsciously trying to smooth them out.

In such a state, I realized: gratitude is positive acceptance and awareness, i.e. gracious admission that you will include the thing in your future, to positive ends.

Gratitude is:

  • a release of resistance to the fact of a thing's existence

    • it exists, either way; why waste time trying to push it away? pushing it away makes it real, too, and you'll have to keep pushing. gratitude allows it to be, which curiously enough gives it a chance to be forgotten, which allows it to fade from existence in the realm of your experience

  • a positive incorporation of a thing into your own timeline

    • it's here, and it is inherently neutral -- a puzzle piece with multiple sides. you can rotate it around, and let it interact with your life as you will. will you find an angle that fits well, and feels good, and lets you rest? will you take the time to rotate it around, get to know it, and find a way to hold it (or to be held by it) that feels like rest? you don't have to, but the alternative is a hell of a lot more work in the long run.

Most chosen patterns work. Feels like this universe wants things to work.

There are so many ways to live. So many.

Software barely works.

Life works in a million ways, and those ways all co-exist. Some shift into and out of existence over time. (Or maybe/probably they all do?) But it's all concurrent, and there's room for more.

Feels like this universe wants things to work.

Footprints on a painting; Painting the gods

We toured Holyrood Castle yesterday. There's a hall filled with portraits of dignitaries. The tour audio said something about a revolt or an invasion or something, and how if you look carefully at one portrait in particular you can still see a footprint from where it was stepped on.

Separately:

"A set of 1,400-year-old Buddhist statues have been damaged by innocent villagers in China who painted them with bright colours to thank the gods for helping them fulfil their dreams. 'It's too far away and there is little we can do [...] Those villagers are all in their 70s or 80s. They said they painted the figures because they wanted to thank Buddha for answering their prayers. For now we can do nothing about this matter except criticising and educating them.'" -South China Morning Post

Angry violence can be a notable curiosity, from a distance. Earnest giving can be an abhorrent violation, from a distance.

But what if you were there? What if you felt it as it happened? How would you feel?

What's your "probably always" list, and how does your life fit?

There are some things that will "probably always" be true of each of us. I'm probably always going to want/need/love plenty of unstructured (read: self-structured) time, in particular quiet mornings while my brain boots up. I'm probably always going to want/need/love β–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆβ–ˆ. I'm probably always going to want/need/love the free exploration of concept and meaning, and to build experiments that prove the moving balance of life and death in a given conceptualization. My life fits all of these things really, really well.

I tune my life (gradually, partly consciously but for the greater part unconsciously) to better and better fit the things that will probably always be true of me. I think it's tantamount to asymptotically approaching complete rest.

What's probably always gonna be true for you? How well does your life fit those things? How can you gently nudge the shape and posture of your life to fit those things just a little bit better? Each iteration you do in this work will pay off daily, for the rest of your life. It is maybe the best investment you could make.

Leastwise, it is maybe the best investment I make. :)

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