Friday, July 07, 2006

The Conservation of Energy (Valuing One’s Own Efforts)

One of the great principles governing life and the universe, is the need for the conservation of energy -- rather than in thinking that energy is unlimited and cheap, if not free. In this way, people have been taught to value their own efforts as nothing -- if nobody else pays them for that effort, and so they become conditioned to the thinking that what somebody else pays them for it, is its real value -- rather than what they themselves value it.

In the past, it was mostly the artists of various callings who thought otherwise -- and often, many never received the validation they deserved until after they were dead -- too late to honor their valiant efforts on the behalf of humanity. That still happens today -- that we do not honor the living, while they live, and think that it can be rectified, in honoring the dead -- when it is too late, to do them any good.

Often in the news, people are hounded endlessly until a few are driven into distraction, madness, or even death -- for that torment to end, mercifully. That is the other extreme of giving too much or too little attention -- and almost never the proper and appropriate attention to any and all efforts. That neglect and indifference, shows up in one’s appearance -- as part of one’s health. Obviously if a person doesn’t care and can’t tell the difference in being one way or another -- that randomness and arbitrariness will be conveyed as their essential nature -- the tendency for order to deteriorate utterly to randomness, chaos, death, entropy.

So while the general rule of the universe is this movement towards randomness and increasing disorder, life is the notable and remarkable exception. Life creates and predisposes increasingly greater order and organization -- as its organizing principle. This is a very critical misunderstanding of many who have a fashionably contemporary but shallow understanding of reality and all it entails. The methodology of study presumes randomness and looks for confirmation of it -- while ignoring all evidence to the contrary, that there is intelligence at work.

It is a tremendous flaw in the study of human behavior -- because such a model of understanding, must presume that that which is studied and observed, has no awareness of what is being studied -- instead that, it might even be more important, to understand that awareness. In 1988, I named such a study, “Understanding Conditioning.”

Just like scientists studying the movements of the atom in the early 20th century came to realize that what they were observing was their own limits of observation, perception and understanding -- that essential failure in understanding, limits the success of most human behaviors and activities, outside of the laboratory conditions of most of life. Rather than in establishing laboratories in which to study behaviors, it is vitally important to understand them in action as the only reality because what one thinks he may be studying in the laboratory, may not be what is happening in the actuality.

Those studies may actually be just a waste of time and energy -- if there is no awareness of what one is doing.


At July 07, 2006 3:45 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

This valuing of one’s own efforts as worth nothing, of course, makes all their efforts predictably worthless and futile. If one does not value their own effort first, how can they expect anybody else to value it highly also. That implies the mentality of getting something for nothing -- rather than value for value -- in a free exchange. In one’s work, one is creating value -- and not that one is merely fooling another by looking busy in that manner.

That’s why some people’s efforts pay off and are highly productive while many will just go through the motions with little purpose, meaning and productivity -- despairing that any effort can make a difference -- thinking nobody will be able to tell the difference anyway. Thus they complain loudly to the universe, and in op-ed sections, that all s futile and despairing., which has a tremendous resonance with the many editors of all the newspapers across the land, who feature such perspectives as the dominant worldview of their readers.

The fitness and health section of their papers will be a litany of everything that doesn’t work -- because they don’t want to believe anything else. And so their faithful readers are “stuck” with everything that doesn’t work -- because it is “free,” they read about it in the newspaper, or saw it on an infomercial.

The success of such programs, it is claimed, is that it is a superior way to “burn” energy -- as though that was an intelligent, productive thing to do. It is the greatest violation of intelligent and purposeful life and living -- as the conventional wisdom to know! Which of course values the least efficient and least productive way to do anything -- as the highest attainment of people conditioned in those values. Not surprisingly, the highest consumption and waste of energy and resources, is the underlying categorical imperative of such cultures/societies.

Waste is the end-product of that society’s every activity. One has not done something, unless one produces waste as a testimony to having “been there.” That is the underlying cultural message that even the least educated, are unmistakable about. Excess, fat, waste -- are the cultural ideals of beauty and success, in such societies.

One must be clear about these things -- or one will think that randomness just happens. Cultures and their preoccupations, predispose such achievements. The health and well-being of individuals are the most reliable indicators of that civilization and culture. The people are the end-products of any society -- well-conditioned or not. That is the bottom line.

Their fitness is their survival value.

At July 08, 2006 6:48 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Because most people won't be "paid" to get into shape, many people won't get into shape -- because they won't do something unless somebody else pays them to do it. In the case of athletes, people will pay them, or there is a payoff in recognition, popularity, respect, etc.

The danger in that is that one is still doing it for the approbation of others (compensation) -- rather than as the reward to oneself, of inner direction. Thus, many athletes will not do anything unless their coach/trainer demands it of them -- rather than that they be inner-driven for improvement and perfection.

Every coach/teacher should recognize that it is this latter type of individual who will be the winner -- and not those who must be coerced, bribed, tricked and manipulated into doing what is good. Yet that is the approach that a lot of the fitness programs take -- which necessitates the need for fitness and health care professionals to tell them what to do.

Many people don't realize that professional health care is not what produces health in the individual but largely their own efforts -- but in the absence of that, health care must make up for the neglect. Health care is not synonymous with health; real health decrease the need for health care.

So when we hear the demand for more health care, we have to be careful we understand this relationship. In a really healthy society, the need for health care goes to zero -- and not explodes astronomically out of control demanding that we fund greater reliance and abuses on that system. The people who are most aware of this, ironically, are the honest physicians themselves.

At July 09, 2006 12:37 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

The expenditure of energy (resources), does not create more energy, and any successful athlete must assess that reality in determining when it is appropriate to go “all out,” and when the battle is not worth fighting. In this manner, the individual, does not expend their energy in the subterfuges and feints, but remains focused on the lethal blow, the coup de grace.

The simple fact of the matter is that exercise is a very poor way to burn calories, and use of the body; the calorie imbalance must focus on putting it in -- because two wrongs don’t make a right. If one is overeating, one needs to stop that effort. And then one doesn’t excessively wear and tear the body in trying to get rid of those previous sins. Far better than exercising to lose weight, is commencing immediately not to consume further calories. The real value of exercise is not in burning calories arbitrarily, but in using that expenditure of energy to shape the body -- while leaving ample reserves for further growth -- which requires energy.

Not eating is not as monumental an achievement as the overeaters of the world make it seem. One simply has to find something more interesting to do. When one is absorbed in any other activity and purpose, one is not consumed with thoughts of one’s next consumption. For that purpose, exercise is a worthy preoccupation -- mainly because one is usually not eating as an integral part of that activity -- rather than the amount of calories they expend in it. When people are clear on this, the intelligent thing is not to put it in the body in the first place. The deception is in thinking there is a better way to get rid of that excess after the deed is done.

Does that mean no pleasure should ever be derived from food -- as some will go to the other extreme to make eating therefore, punitive? All those extreme behaviors are the problem in the first place. One has to merely develop an attitude of moderation (mindfulness) in everything -- including eating and exercise, because the same people have those self-destructive tendencies (addictions) of extreme behaviors. They also come to binge and purge, consume all protein, carbohydrates, fats, fiber, whatever is the fad of the moment.

All this is especially true as people get older and seem to lose their recovery ability, or so the balance becomes much more precarious. It takes longer to fully recover from an exhaustion of the body -- or an injury, sickness, disease. What used to produce growth, may just produce irrecoverable fatigue -- and more exercise, higher workloads are not the answer. One has to probe the least expenditure that gets the most return.

In most activities in life, it is the 5% that produces 95% of the benefits. The other 95%, produces the 5% that may be a difference if one is carefully attuned to that degree of difference -- as in a highly competitive event between equals. However, the biggest difference in high-level competitions these days is that they are not equals but the one who emerges victorious is likely to be a genetic freak that the others cannot match no matter how long and hard they work at it. Therefore, the difference is not likely to be in effort, but in genetic advantage -- which has been recognized by the world’s top coaches and trainer for at least the last 50 years. It’s not politically correct to say so, so it is not a well-known fact. Thus, many labor under the delusion they have an equal chance at anything with anybody.


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