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[OpNet] Negative Theory

Sakurako Hino

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Here is something to chomp on.

Recently, while bored, I started slamming the philosophical center of my brain on some quality thought cycling. Here's what came out.

Negative Theory:

The practice of not following a plan of action instead relying on chance and force. The practice of not thinking, but doing, in a rash and unplanned manner.

Many troubles in Nova and Human society stem from the practice of Negative Theory. From the dependance of emotion and gut feeling taking over logic and reason to come to an equitable and fair solution. Through practicing empty ritual which not only has no further meaning other than the act. Such as a superstition that has no weight in a modern world, stemming from a need in the past.

When the mind is locked on the tracks of negative theory, the only thing it can do is respond as trained, without planning or forethought. Like the lemming who follows his comrades over the cliff into oblivion.

This is in direct opposite of the Theory of Zen, of acting without thought, because of careful planning and practice. Where the act of continuing needless rumination would only hurt a proper course of action. Where only Action or Inaction is possible.

Therefore, Action in a vacuum of planning and forethought is of negative theory, or lack of theory. Doomed to failure because of the lack of actually planning out and practicing your art, and learning as much as you can to improve your standing and stance.

Okay, did I bend your minds? Or am I just chasing my own skirt?


That is, if I was wearing one...

Anyways, any takers to analyse what I just wrote on a napkin just 10 minutes ago and I'm posting here now?

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Stagnant thinking and needless ritual done for the sake of itself is a blind, stupid thing, you are correct.

There are two points I would like to argue regarding this matter, however.

Ritual often seems to be done for the sake of itself, but often has higher purpose. Growing up where you did, you of all people should know this. While even I will confess that many Japanese customs are hopelessly dated and no longer relevant, many of the seemingly needless ritual attributed to everything from the folding of clothes to the pouring of beverages to breathing was in fact a natural and very well-disguised extension of Zen mind, as such practice was designed to implement certain behavioral patterns over a length of time. By performing seemingly mundane actions in a seemingly asinine and overcomplicated way, you unknowingly learn temperence, patience, will, resolve and discipline.

I do not disagree with you statement, Sakurako. I simply mention this to caution you against generalizations.

And while it is often best and most wise to act with a cool head, to assume that all actions taken purely out of emotion are negative is as fallacious as assuming that all well-planned actions are positive. I have seen faith move mountains, Saku-chan, and I have seen anger boil the seas. I have seen tyrants toppled with the power of passion and the sorrow and sadness of a dying warrior steel his resolve to fight on.

Never underestimate the power of the mortal spirit. Our passion can betray us, but it is a valuable resource.


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To make a bad analogy, imagine your life is a car, your brain's operating the steering wheel, and your passion and heart is manning the brakes and the gas pedal.

Steering with no gas means you can fool yourself into thinking you're going somewhere when all you're really doing is sitting in the Safeway parking lot of the soul (to stretch a metaphor) while all gas and no steering means you're sure gonna go SOMEWHERE, whether it's straight to where you want to be or straight into the wall of the Safeway of the soul, possible mashing a takeout boy of the soul (to stretch a metaphor to the breaking point.)

As my grandpa used to say: "you got two halves to your brain, squirt, and God put them both there for a reason."

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*cross-eyed, then massages forehead...*

Okay... Vixen, you take the cake for metaphors. I think what I was trying to beat out of my head was something much simpler. To apply a K.I.S.S. method, what it rounds out to is this: Never jump in head first if you don't know how deep the water is.

There is an addendum to that stating: And don't wear floaties in the bathtub.

In other words, there is such a thing as over-planning, and acting rashly. Moderation is the key.

As you can see, my ruminations do lock up my brain at times, and I'm trying to pound out the little bugs that tend to make me over-analyse things. I really threw this out to... well... express guerilla philosophy. Sort of opening your mind and letting out what needs a walk. But I do get where both you guys come from.

Now if only I can figure out why I even posted this in the first place... Oh, figured it. It was, asking fellow souls if what I thought... no, felt... was on target...

Thank you. For the enlightenment.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 1 month later...


Poor kid. You remind me of my late twin sister.

Never could set her mind on a path and just go on it.

I'm glad though you're now coming around.

And yes, Neil, An unfocussed mind and Napkins are bad. Add a caffeine bender to that, and you get GENIUS!!!

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