Check out how a Shaolin Monk approaches life in general. I love it when I hear he says the middle way is not extreme left or right but a big circle in the video. He uses the example of eating meat as a monk is not OK when there is a vegetable, but he is practicing the middle way and so when he only has a choice of eating meat at the moment because someone offers him meat only — he would not deny since the animal is already dead. For example, this person would tell him that he or she could throw away the meat as waste if he isn’t going to accept it — thus he must do so since the animal is already dead. Moreover, he said that embrace change and middle way and do not stick to extreme concept since in life things are changing naturally and never stay the same, and by not saying eating meat is bad or eating vegetable only is bad — he is practicing the middle way by being a monk and yet he eats meat when a good samaritan is offering him meat only. So, looking at both extremes and yet don’t deny any and only do what is making sense at the moment could allow a person getting closer to the middle way.
I don’t usually think in a mathematical sense but I rather think in a philosophical sense… I think! Anyhow, I love to wonder about the realm of randomness and probability from time to time. It’s intriguing to me when I think about how large is the universe; it seems to go on endlessly without a border in sight like how earth got its own boundary. Thus, I would think — could we ever calculate the possibilities and the probabilities of each possibility and the possibilities of each probability within our own universe?
The universe is so large and so we may not know where it would end so there could be a beginning of something else. Multiple universes? We don’t know really! But I guess scientists out there got their own mathematical formulas and scientific theories to provide them some basics of a foundation to provide many inputs into a computer model so we humans can simulate a known universe. Nonetheless, what we don’t know may not allow us to calculate what we want and wish to know — that is the beyond!
Quantum computing is gaining innovative developments each day. This could allow us to have a much more powerful mean to calculate whatever. I guess we could simulate a known universe in a quantum computer with more ease than how we’re doing with the traditional computer technology. The question is, can a quantum computer help us sprinkle the probabilities and the possibilities of what is known and what is only a guesswork into our computer models so we could arrive at a point where we may discover more about our own universe?
I even question on the rigidity of theories and known facts because I think to go beyond one must take a risk in traveling the unknown seas — in a time when we have no idea and not a clue of what would lie ahead. Could the rigidity of theories and facts prevent us from developing more knowledge? Nonetheless, we cannot just simply enter a magical element into a well-developed computer model to simulate what we truly want to know about the universe, right?
But to think a fish cannot fly could be right on earth, it could be wrong on another planet when everything could fly! Of course, I truly do not know if there is such a planet. This is the magical element I’m talking about! Thus, entering the probabilities and the possibilities of what if as if how we explored the unknown seas back in time. Right now, our new unknown seas are the new boundaries and borders and stuff within our universe.
I also think if such magical element could help us discover more about the universe, could it allow us to calculate the probabilities and possibilities of a possible future — giving that we’re knowing some known facts and theories that would be married to a magical element or elements? I guess the quantum computer technology could really help us here. I skim some texts on probability through the web and they describe probability as events with yes and no such as 1 and 0. Nonetheless, I question this as I ponder a fish could fly. Why? Sometimes, could yes also mean no?
In the last blog post “Can Our Universe Expand Forever Or Expand Then Contract Later Just So It Could Die?” I surmised that the universe (our universe among many others) could have been expanding and contracting according to how it got fed with external energy — where such force would have to wander outside our very own singularity. Without such external nursery of energy, I surmised that our universe is like a quantifiable fish aquarium. Nonetheless, we all know that even a human being could be intelligibly randomized things at will — thus I think according to the universe we’re sentient beings are the AI (artificial intelligent). How about let me surmise some more and say that — what if the universe itself is a higher artificial intelligent force in which it could randomize things at will to expand and contract according to circumstances?
We human beings could only see the results of why the universe is expanding and contracting according to our very own whatever theories — but why would the universe do such a thing? What’s the point of expanding or contracting? Expanding to create more empty space for what? Contracting is like a suicidal attempt of killing itself off so the existence of the universe itself would cease to exist. Furthermore, perhaps the universe itself is like a smart TV or fishbowl/aquarium in which it was designed by a higher being. This way the purpose of expanding and contracting won’t be the burden with which the universe has to carry. This burden could be carried by the designer of the universe.
At this point, I think it’s more like a philosophical thinking than anything concrete on this matter, but it’s so intriguing nonetheless. In my opinion, philosophical or not, it’s rather important for us sentient beings to dig deeper into our origin. After all, if we could not remember how we’d come into being, then we would forever aimlessly forget about our root and forever lost — wandering in a dark forest (Three Body Problem’s sci-fi trilogy second book is also titled as The Dark Forest). I think only when we could figure out our true root of how we’d come into the existence, it is then that we could evolve to be something greater. Perhaps in such a quest, we could discover new technology to bring us to new heights; we could grow into even more capable and intelligent sentient beings.
In a time of war and competition, do strategies from fictional and non-fictional historic works amount to anything in reality? I like to think some strategies and tactics in such works do encourage self-reflection and humbleness for the creative mind and out of the box thinking do shine some light on whatever matters that are at hand. I have always loved Romance of Three Kingdoms story because this work does carry some really cool fictional and non-fictional strategies and tactics.
If you don’t know about Romance of the Three Kingdoms, then you wouldn’t know why it’s a great piece of work! Basically, this piece of work is rather ancient as it was penned by ancient Chinese authors. Ancient Chinese authors exaggerated a lot of things in Romance of the Three Kingdoms, but these authors had also included a lot of known real historical facts.
I like how the intricate plots and interactions among the characters within Romance of the Three Kingdoms play out. Especially, the coolness level rises to the max when the advisers among different factions try to best each other by using amazing tactics and strategies, both in the battles and out of the battles. Liu Bei’s smartest adviser Zhuge Liang is especially cool as this guy is being portraited as one of the smartest if not the smartest advisers on earth at the time, in ancient China. His reputation proceeded him because he could predict ancient weather patterns and devise winning strategies, both in the battles and out of the battles, for his lord.
Cao Cao got some smart advisers too! In this blog post, I like to focus on one of Cao Cao’s smart advisers who is known as Gou Jia. According to Wikipedia, Gou Jia flattered Cao Cao with Cao Cao’s ten advantages over Yuan Shao and Cao Cao was so flattered that he hired Gou Jia to be a Libationer. To tell the truth, I don’t know what is a Libationer in ancient China, but for sure Cao Cao’s many victories were won through Gou Jia’s well-thought strategies and tactics.
In this blog post, I like to think that Gou Jia’s Cao Cao ten advantages over Yuan Shao are still relevant today. Let me list these ten advantages. Actually, let me quote Wikipedia’s Gou Jia article:
“Everyone has heard of the rivalry between Liu Bang and Xiang Yu. Liu Bang won by strategy; Xiang Yu was very powerful but he still lost to Liu Bang. Based on my observations, Yuan Shao has ten disadvantages while you have ten advantages. (Yuan Shao) may have many troops but they are useless.
- Yuan Shao is overly concerned with formalities, while you behave naturally. You win him in principle.[Sanguozhi zhu 4]
- Yuan Shao attempts to achieve supremacy from an opposing position, while you use the Han Empire’s authority to command respect. You win him in righteousness.[Sanguozhi zhu 5]
- The Han dynasty declined due to a lack of discipline and law enforcement. Yuan Shao condones his followers and their ill discipline, so he fails in administration. You uphold discipline sternly and firmly among your followers. You win him in management.[Sanguozhi zhu 6]
- Yuan Shao appears to be welcoming and accepting but he is actually jealous and suspicious. He never fully trusts his followers and places faith only in his family members and close relatives. You appear simple on the outside but you are actually very discerning on the inside. You fully trust those you have placed your faith in, and you promote meritocracy. You win him in tolerance.[Sanguozhi zhu 7]
- Yuan Shao likes to listen to many ideas but is indecisive and he hesitates before he makes any move. You are decisive and you adapt to changes well. You win him in strategy.[Sanguozhi zhu 8]
- Yuan Shao uses his fame to attract people to serve him and boost his name. His followers are mostly people who are able to disguise their flaws through persuasion and glib talk. You are sincere towards your followers and do not recruit them for the purpose of increasing your fame. Many loyal and truly capable people are willing to serve under you. You win him in virtue.[Sanguozhi zhu 9]
- When Yuan Shao sees others suffering from hunger and cold, he will express his concern towards them. However, he will not do so if their sufferings are not obvious. This is a form of unwise care and concern. You sometimes neglect less important things but when you handle big situations, you are connected to the masses within the Four Seas and the rewards you give out are far greater than Yuan Shao’s fame. Even though this may not be obvious, your care and concern towards others are complete. You win him in benevolence.[Sanguozhi zhu 10]
- Yuan Shao’s followers are often bickering and politicking and they give libelous and troublesome advice. You govern your followers with the right principles, so corruption does not occur under your leadership. You win him in wisdom.[Sanguozhi zhu 11]
- Yuan Shao cannot distinguish between right and wrong. You respect someone when you think he has done right and you punish someone when you feel he has done wrong. You win him in culture.[Sanguozhi zhu 12]
- Yuan Shao likes to display bravado and is not aware of the crucial elements in war. You overcome an enemy superior in numbers with a smaller force, just like a god of war. The soldiers look up to you, your enemies fear you. You win him in military skill.”[Sanguozhi zhu 13]
Do you think in today world, these advantages that Gou Jia mentioned to Cao Cao are still wise words? Personally, I do think these words are still wise. I like the advice #3 (management capability matters), #4 (to employ someone is to believe and trust that someone otherwise it would be counterproductive), #5 (don’t be indecisive), #6 (use capable people in important roles and positions), #7 (be very practical and honest when interact with a faction, whoever and whatever), and the advice #8 (destroy corruptions). To conclude I say these wise words are still relevant today; these words could still be employed by wise leaders of today world!
As earth’s population grows larger and automation gains traction each day, how many job categories and niches would dwindle each time before there would be none left for onlookers? More people mean more jobs are needed to sustain a vibrant society where equality gap could be lessened instead of widening. More automation means more people will lose jobs. These two factors are like pouring gasoline onto the fire.
Unethically, such a society could demand people to have fewer children, but such a society needs a strong authoritarian government. In the West, most governments are democratic, and so such demand would be outrageous. Furthermore, such a demand is for a weak society, because the society doesn’t have a solution thus resolving into forcing a reduction of population headcount.
A wiser society would not demand a reduction of population headcount — it got a solution for what’s coming! What solution? As of now, there is no clear solution for the two detrimental factors I stated in the first paragraph! By the way, what is a society? In my opinion, a society is a group of people that stick together for the benefits of the majority. The two detrimental factors I described earlier would chip away most benefits of the majority in our modern societies.
Few governments and groups are trying out basic income as a testing case for trying to solve the inequality gap between classes of groups of people in our modern societies. Nonetheless, small-scale basic income test trials most likely won’t yield any good result. Furthermore, basic income for large countries like the United States and China would be an insane proposition. No amount of money would be enough to give out to each person in a large country.
I think basic income is kind of screwy too! For an example, the more money the government prints to give out the more people will spend thus requiring the money printers to print even more money so the government could have enough doughs to give out to even more people. Get the gist? Once the government tightens the belt such as stopping giving out money, the basic income scheme would collapse immediately. A society that is addicted to basic income could also collapse!
By the way, how inflation would work in a basic income society? I don’t think I know the answer to this as I’ve seen nothing like it has ever applied to a large country like the United States or China. We all know that if inflation goes north too much everything would become rather pricey because the supply of money is too large — simply put, too many dollars would chase too few demands.
As job loss number increases and automation gains worldwide prominent, the tipping point would become too real when a society becomes desperate and mad. Nonetheless, as an advanced society could produce just about anything with little effort using automation, the tipping point once again could occur positively as people would no longer require making a living by working the field, factory, office and so forth.
The question is, in the between the transition from a working society to a leisure society, how many people would have to die and how many revolutions would have to occur before the storm could pass and peace could form? The basic income could work as a dirty solution till the modern society could completely transform into a leisure society! The question is, will the governments of the world dare to print an unlimited amount of money before inflation hits and destroys the hope and dream of attaining a transformation of a modern society into a leisure one?
Perhaps, basic income is too draconian and would not work. Perhaps, providing a fair playing field for the newcomers would work? What do I mean? Imagine basic income is not basic income but a one-time thing for the poor and the newborns! What do I mean again? Well, basic income is too hard to carry out as it requires the governments of the world to continuously print an unlimited amount of money each year. Instead of basic income, why not basic equality for the poor and the newborns?
What do I mean by basic equality for the poor and the newborns? Well, let’s say the government would go about to calculate the right amount of money each person needs to have a fulfilling life as long such a person would not do anything too crazy to destroy the money cache quickly such as using drugs, gamble, and whatnot — then a government would give a one-time basic income to all the poor in his/her own country so to provide a fair level of playing field. Obviously, the rich won’t need any basic income so the government can save money by not giving any to the rich through basic income channel!
Basic equality would save the prudent government a lot of money and yet his/her society would be able to function in a jobless era. All the newborns could also receive one-time basic income in a form of a trust fund that the government would create for them. The trust fund would go out to the parents of the newborns for a while till the newborns become adults. Once the newborns reach adulthood, the government then could give them basic equality (one-time basic income) according to the inflation rate in their time.
Of course, the hope is that the basic equality would buy time for modern societies to transform into leisure societies across the world. The idea of basic equality, one-time basic income, is to leave nobody behind yet buy time for the governments of the world to see their societies transform into leisure societies where automation would provide everything everyone needs. When everybody got everything and more, money would become so irrelevant! In such a society, money won’t buy anything! In a leisure society, only the smart, funny, easy going, talented ones could become real assets of the world!
Just another poem I’d written thus far. Enjoy!
If God is here today,
sitting in the kitchen to eat,
to drink and to brighten up the mood,
when a cockroach runs by,
would he just smash it to hell???
or would he just ignore it and dine on???
keeping his spirit high,
even though he feels ill,
for the cockroach is one hell of a sight.
You can hate me for thinking that,
how God is similar to us,
when something is unwholesome as a cockroach,
skipping by us, scrambling quick and dirty,
dirtying our mood as we dine our blessing,
but it’s all going to hell,
for a cockroach is in the house,
and we are quick to grab hold onto something,
big and strong and sturdy,
so we could smash the damn thing,
smash it into little pieces,
so we can feel even more disgusted,
by the sight of its splattered ooze,
but a spider had scrambled by earlier,
we did nothing to it,
and laughed on while we dined,
as if the spider was meant to run free by us,
and here is the smashed ooze from the cockroach,
disgustingly forcing us to scramble,
for something to clean up the unwholesome sight,
the ooze that is.
If God is dining with his friends,
sitting up high in heaven,
drinking and smiling to brighten up the mood,
when a human runs by,
would he just smash it or…