Patterns Of Psychopathy And Other Fractal Anomalies
“If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.” - Lao Tzu
Patterns are all around us, in us, and part of every dynamic process that defines our behaviour and the world in which we live. They can be beautiful to look at, such as the microscopic view of a crystal, or they can be disturbing, like the image of prisoners lined up in orthogonal rows at a death camp. In this essay I'd like to talk about some patterns that exist both as the highest and lowest examples of man's creativity and ingenuity. On the one hand we can explore some fascinating iterations of our intellectual capacity through mathematical algorithms that bring forth intricately beautiful graphic images. As well, we can look at a darker side to human artfulness in our ability to arrange patterns of behaviour for power and greed. If we are to survive the current changes being wrought upon our world, we must first identify and understand those systems of control set to manipulate us, only then can we realize our own potential in charting a course that is truly and freely our own.
"Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, and bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line." - Benoit Mandelbrot, 1983
Frac·tal n. A geometric pattern that is repeated at various scales to produce irregular shapes and surfaces that cannot be represented by classical geometry. A fractal has a fragmented geometric shape that can be subdivided in parts, each of which is approximately a reduced-size, self-similar copy of the whole. Fractals are used to model irregular patterns and structures in nature.
Benoit Mandelbrot was a mathematician who coined the word "fractal" in the early 1980s. At its simplest definition, a fractal is any quantity or pattern that displays self-similarity and reveals greater complexity as it is enlarged. The graphical representation of a fractal illustrates the idea of "worlds within worlds" or "self iteration", concepts that are innate to most Western cultures. Fractals are generated from what is known as a "positive feedback loop". Data, or something else like physical matter, goes in one "end," undergoes a modification, and comes out the other. Fractals are produced when the output is repeatedly fed back into the system as input again and again. These models demonstrate to us how a simply defined instruction set can generate intricate and elaborate patterns. We see these types of formations in the natural world, and in the realm of human behaviour.
"The process of creation is the same in art and nature." - Wassily Kandinsky
Traditional geometric patterns appear simpler the more they are magnified, reducing in complexity to a straight line as you draw closer. Fractals, on the other hand, reveal greater complexity and detail when magnified, like the bifurcations of a lightning bolt or the variegated surface area on a piece of broccoli. The standard example used for explaining fractals is the Coastline Paradox. If we measure the length of a coastline with a mile-long ruler, we will get one number. If we use a yardstick, we will get a larger value, because a yardstick can more accurately map the convoluted boundary of such a natural shape. As the scale of measurement decreases, the considered length increases without limit. Therefore, as the instrument of measurement approaches zero in its length, the estimated length of the coastline approaches infinity. This irregularity of the object being measured is characteristic of fractal curves and surfaces. Any section of a self-similar fractal curve when magnified in scale, will appear identical to the entire curve in question. This repetition of pattern is found everywhere in nature and is revealed in the organic growth patterns of seashells, vegetation, and many other examples which illustrate the principle of self-similarity, especially genetics.
Each child is born into our culture as a blank slate, and in that helpless state of dependency our egos are molded and shaped by society from the very beginning to believe that we are the centre of the universe. This pattern is set within the first few years of a person's life. Born out of a parent's love, then nurtured and manipulated through an education system, along with the mentally crippling effects of controlled indoctrination through television, we grow up believing we are the best. Once outside the family circle we will naturally come up against a multitude of others who are also trained to think the same thing. Indeed, they too have a very egocentric view of the world and believe themselves to be most important. There will be competition, fights, and a lifelong struggle to prove we are better than the rest. Everybody is trying to dominate, to outshine everyone else and prove that they alone are the focal point of all creation. Wealth and power are the signs of success, and in the adult world skewed by moral relativism, all means - lies, hypocrisy, deceit, pretension, anything it takes to be on top and be better off than the next guy - are employed to win the prize.
Psy·chop·a·thy –noun, plural -thies. A mental disorder in which an individual manifests amoral and antisocial behavior, extreme egocentricity, lack of ability to love or establish meaningful personal relationships, failure to learn from experience, etc.
Patterns of behaviour are instilled from an early age. Education has become another system of societal control. Much like health and law enforcement, it started out being a service but has turned into an authority. Eventually every level of government will be standardized according to mandated directives from the United Nations. My 6 year old daughter showed me her new ID card from the Elementary school. It has a bar-code, her picture, and some other information encrypted on it as well. Now, why would a 6 year old need an ID card at school? The truth is, they don't - but it is one tiny bit of social conditioning along with thousands of others designed to get the next generation accustomed to the idea of being identified and controlled - always under the guise of safety or some other perceived social benefit. In reality, it is to train people for how they will be required to live in this brave new world. You can't get into these areas or access these special privileges without this card, or without that biometric identifier, or this new brain-chip.
"All active tyrants and oppressors holding the reins of administration feel their existence endangered if men develop their faculty of thinking. There is a possibility of revolution in all successful quests after Truth. The so-called organized societies, religions, and kingdoms have their edifices founded on untruths. Hence?. A collective effort is made the moment a baby is born to fetter him in bondage and make him dependent on beliefs. All types of educational systems so far have been doing only this. The avowed aim of education is to liberate man. But actually what is achieved is this. In the mind of the individual, restraints of subtle mental slavery are shrewdly infused. The system does not impart thinking but it inculcates beliefs. Since it does not encourage doubts and revolts, the products of such a system of education are usually incompetent to think independently." - osho
And the training continues throughout our entire life. You can't get the sale price without the store's special membership card. You can't be a good citizen and fight the drunk drivers without giving up your rights. You can't fight the drug war without suspending logic. You can't fight the terrorists without believing in lies. There is always a sacrifice where some piece of your individuality and personal integrity is given up to achieve a desired result, and it's always for the greater good. Or else. I used to think that as long as I didn't bother anybody I could just live my life happily and let all the politicians say and do whatever they wanted in order to satisfy their narcissistic power hungry egos. In that happy little arrangement of a life, I could close myself off from the rest of the world and not care what was going on outside my immediate sphere. Of course, I couldn't see that I was being manipulated into living an unconscious existence, cut off from the rest of the world, placated into a dull, senseless state where I didn't have an ounce of empathy for my own kind. Think about it; if you don't care what happens to somebody else, then this trait falls into the category of psychopathy. What makes you think that somebody else is going to care about your rights when the wave of oppression drifts up to your door?
Worlds Within Worlds
Perhaps you have seen an ornamental design known as the Chinese Puzzle Ball. These intricately carved spheres contain a number of smaller, freely moving orbs enclosing each other in concentric circles. This ornament contains great symbolism for different concepts like the eternal circle of life, four layers for the compass points or natural elements, yin and yang, etc. Imagine each of our own perceived realities as being a point on one of those spheres. We move independently, believing that we occupy a place on the outermost circle, just like we believe that everything in our life happens spontaneously and in real time. Each floating sphere is a different perception, a unique consciousness that believes itself to be the centre and on top, until it becomes aware of another layer. You ultimately come to the realization that this is just a contrived reality. Now you see the pattern. It's your own sphere, spinning inside a more complex layer which contains and defines the reality you thought was your own.
How does one come to a realization of this contrived reality? We see a consciously directed agenda unfolding everywhere, independent of which political party is in power. We see it written by the Think Tanks and the NGOs. We can study the United Nations and Agenda 21, the writings of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bilderberg Group, the Club of Rome. We are aware of certain arrangements throughout our whole life which keep repeating, and many things just never seem to make sense. The points of incongruity are all around us at this very moment. We have mercenary armies paid for by the government with our own tax dollars. We have police acting as agents provocateurs trying to incite riot among peacefully assembled citizens. We have the inhumane practice of torture codified into law. We have a campaign of aerial spraying above our very heads for all to see, yet every government will deny existence of the program. We have case after documented case of government led experiments on domestic populations with horrifying and deadly results. We are funding law enforcement agencies who torture people to death with electricity just because they won't answer a question, or because they asked a question, or maybe they are confused and don't speak English and can't understand the question, or maybe because they just refuse to move their car. We are supporting the systematic genocide of our brothers and sisters "over there" in Iraq and Afghanistan. It doesn't matter how you equivocate in your own mind that it's okay; that they live like animals, they mistreat women, they don't worship our god, they don't like soft-boiled eggs on Tuesday, whatever. It's not okay. It's just plain murder. These patterns we live day to day are supporting all manner of atrocities. The trick is that we are made to believe that the sphere we occupy is real and good. We get so absorbed looking at the marvelous intricacies and endless diversions of culture, art, and entertainment, that we don't see the layers on top that are just using us to make up more complex arrangements. Instead, we can remain blissfully unaware if we like, or merely choose not to think about it. Our lives are simple; go to work, pay your taxes, watch TV.
In Germany during the 1930s, a young man worked on an assembly line in a baby carriage factory. His wife was going to have a baby, and he conceived the idea of stealing a part from each factory division. So, every couple of days, he stole a part. When he had all the parts at home, he assembled them. What he wound up with was not a baby carriage, but a machine gun - which illustrates the fact that in the beginning Hitler built his war machine using subterfuge. By the time the world became aware of his plans, it was too late. Even more ribald is the fact that Hitler was funded in part by New York and London banking interests. Indeed, there was a sphere of reality on top of the one our grandparents believed in and gave their lives for. The same thing is happening today . Well meaning, patriotic people are killing and dying for a cause which is a total fabrication. The same thing has always happened. There's a book called, "War Is A Racket" by Major General Smedley Butler. He testified to Congress in the 1930s and blew the whistle on the current President's grandfather, Prescott Bush, who was plotting a fascist coup of the US Government. This attempted coup was being bankrolled by a German industrialist named Fritz Thyssen, who happened to be one of Hitler's main financiers. How's that for an example of a genetic self-similar repetition of pattern?
Once you gain awareness of the bigger pattern of which your life comprises a necessary part, you must say goodbye to the old paradigm that was your interpretation of the world. Since that moment when I apprehended the truth about 9/11, I've never been comfortable with the idea that mass-murderers are running the show. The situation is not acceptable to me anymore. People are being subjugated to unspeakable horrors so a few egregious excuses for humanity can obtain obscene wealth and uncontrolled power, and everybody is supposed to look the other way because it's just too uncomfortable to talk about.
Look at just a few facts which we are supposed to be comfortable with:
· We must make war in Iraq and Afghanistan so we can bring them peace.
· We must strike Iran first with nuclear weapons of which we have thousands, because in a few years they might develop one. This despite the fact that the Director of National Intelligence publicly states, "We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program".
· The troops were lined up to attack Afghanistan months before the US government staged 9/11 and blamed it on the "terrorists".
· We must fight Al Qaeda, even though the CIA is inexorably tied to Al Qaeda.
· The money wired to Mohamed Atta didn't come from Al Qaeda, so ultimately it's not important who funded the "terrorists".
· The very fact that anybody speaks about "terrorists" on 9/11 when they have not produced one shred of evidence for the existence of these 19 men on that day.
· The financial entity that placed the "put options" before 9/11 is not connected to Al Qaeda, so it is not relevant to talk about it, even if it turns out to be connected to the CIA, who created Al Qaeda.
· On June 5, 2006 the FBI stated, “The reason why 9/11 is not mentioned on Osama bin Laden’s Most Wanted page is because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.” As well as saying, “Bin Laden has not been formally charged in connection to 9/11.”
· The missing 2.3 trillion dollars from the defense budget announced by Donald Rumsfeld the day before 9/11.
· The obvious controlled demolition of the 3 World Trade Center towers hit by only 2 planes.
· The Patriot Act & Military Commissions Act & Homegrown Terrorist Act & every other Act put forth by these traitors.
· The Department of Homeland Criminals.
"This earth, this beautiful earth, we have turned into a great prison. A few power-lusty people have reduced the whole of humanity into a mob. Man is allowed to exist only if he compromises with all kinds of nonsense" - osho
Patterns of Politics
Our entire culture is one big pattern, carefully created and manipulated according to a plan. For this plan to work we must all be quantifiable, predictable, and generally hypnotized into complacency. Those who fall outside the established norms with be deemed by "experts" to be mentally imbalanced. We see it already with the ridiculous laws being set up to criminalize dissent. There is no way we are ever going to see truth and justice from these people regarding 9/11. There may be more than enough compelling evidence to bring them to trial, but that would presuppose there was a sphere of justice in control. There is not. It's like asking the serial-killing pedophile to look after the girls dorm for the weekend. And so the mantra of the psychologically diseased gets repeated ad nauseam. War on terror. Al Qaeda. Bin Laden. Radical Muslims. On and on. That's all they have. The impetus of their conspiracy theory dissipates on a daily basis as the numbers of awakened individuals is increasing exponentially.
"Advertise, go on repeating to the public, and don't be bothered whether they believe or not -- that's not the point. Hitler says there is only one difference between a truth and a lie: the truth is a lie that has been repeated very often. And man can believe any lies. Man's gullibility is infinite. Man can believe in hell, man can believe in heaven, man can believe in angels, man can believe in devils, man can believe in anything! You just go on repeating." - osho
“See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda." - George W. Bush
Ever notice how politicians can profess diametrically opposite viewpoints, yet still manage to convince themselves of the truth in their words. They are so genuinely concerned about your needs when they are running for office, but once elected they don't want to acknowledge your existence. It's human nature in this system. When I bring back the empty beer bottles to the liquor store "Returns" counter, the person takes a long time in the back before coming out to gruffly sneer at me without so much as a hello. Then he slaps down the change and brushes me off like I'm some kind of a bum. Now, in my mind, I can't help but think that just a few days ago it was "good day, Sir" and "thank you, Sir" when I was just a few feet away from this hell's corner starring "Shleppo the Wonderboy". There I was, standing in the line-up, apparently deserving of all the respectability in the world as I was waiting to shell out the bucks for some booze in this government-controlled liquor store. There should be just as much dignity to the process of returning the empties as there is in buying the full, shiny, new bottles. The point is, when people want your vote or your money, they are among your best friends, but when you want something from them, then it's "please fill out the form" or "press the pound key now".
How do we break free of these patterns? First we identify them, which means elevating our level of awareness and understanding, then we must have the courage to let them go.
Searching for Buddha
A monk set off on a long pilgrimage to find the Buddha. He devoted many years of his life to this search until he finally reached the land where the Buddha was said to live. While crossing the river to this country, the monk looked around as the boatman rowed. He noticed something floating towards them. As it drew closer, he realized that is was the corpse of a person. When it drifted so close that he could touch it, he suddenly recognized the dead body. It was his own! He lost control and shrieked at the sight of himself, dead and lifeless, floating along with the river's currents. Now he didn't need to get to the other shore, all that was him and his past floated away with the corpse. That moment was the beginning of his liberation. He started laughing because he had spent so much of his life searching for the Buddha without, and all the while Buddha was within. All he had to do was let go of that image he carried of himself. In another telling of this beautiful parable we have the monk arriving on the riverbank. Just as he is about to give up his search he sees a great teacher on the other side of the river. The monk yells over to the master, "Oh wise one, can you please tell me how to get to the other side of the river?" The teacher ponders for a few moments, looks up and down the river and yells back, "You are on the other side."
The patterns ingrained deep within us tell us there is only one way to be victorious in this world, and that is to fight our enemies and be better than everyone else. It has become an integral part of our survival mechanism. When you move inside your being, you naturally bring this same methodology, only here it will not work. Employing the old techniques of cunning, aggression and deceit will not help, for inside there is no one to trick but yourself. The greatest battles are fought internally. The worst hell is that which we impose on ourselves in our own mind through our misinterpretation of the world. Instead of inculcating our young psyches with relativistic notions of who is best, we might try cultivating a mindset that seeks true understanding through awareness. That sense of mindfulness involves becoming a witness to your own life. Every thought and action has a ripple effect, and is therefore significant. It requires seeing yourself as not being separate from and in contention with your fellow human beings, but an integral part of all things.
Heaven and Hell
A huge, rough Samurai once went to see a little monk, hoping to acquire the secrets of the universe. "Monk," he said, in a voice accustomed to instant obedience, "teach me about heaven and hell." The little monk looked up at the mighty warrior in silence. Then, after a moment, he said to the Samurai with utter disdain, "Teach YOU about heaven and hell? I couldn't teach you about anything. You're dirty. You smell. Your blade is rusty. You're a disgrace, an embarrassment to the Samurai class. Get out of my sight at once. I can't stand you!" The Samurai was furious. He began to shake all over from the anger that raced through him. A red flush spread over his face; he was speechless with rage. Quickly, menacingly, he pulled out his sword and raised it above his head, preparing to slay the monk. "That's hell." said the little monk quietly. The Samurai was overwhelmed. Stunned. The compassion and surrender of this little man who had offered his life to give this teaching about hell! He slowly lowered his sword, filled with gratitude, and for reasons he could not explain his heart became suddenly peaceful. "And that's heaven," said the monk softly. - Zen Proverb
Being a witness to your own life can elevate you to the perspective where you don't have to fight against the world. There is no need to prove anything, nobody to defeat. There is a higher consciousness which can be obtained by truly living within this moment, in no longer being a slave to our desires. We realize that our physical body withers with time, the ego fades, but rather than becoming some sad caricature of our former self, we can lift ourselves above what we once believed were the limits of our being. That realization requires bringing a mindfulness to each moment as if it is the only time we have left. It is. The past is gone. Tomorrow is never certain. But within that state of true conscious awareness, we have the eternal capacity to renew ourselves and throw off those patterns that are but chains upon our life. We don't need them. Rather than defining us in any life-affirming way, they only serve the designs of others and pose limitations on our true potential.
"Life repeats itself mindlessly - unless you become mindful, it will go on repeating like a wheel. Thats why Buddhists call it the wheel of life and death, the wheel of time. It moves like a wheel: birth is followed by death, death is followed by birth; love is followed by hate, hate is followed by love; success is followed by failure, failure is followed by success. Just see! If you can watch just for a few days, you will see a pattern emerging, a wheel pattern. One day, a fine morning, you are feeling so good and so happy, and another day you are so dull, so dead that you start thinking of committing suicide. And just the other day you were so full of life, so blissful that you were feeling thankful to God, that you were in a mood of deep gratefulness, and today there is great complaint and you don't see the point why one should go on living.... And it goes on and on, but you don't see the pattern. Once you see the pattern, you can get out of it." - osho
Last updated 07/01/2008