THURSDAY, 16 FEBRUARY 2006
All the protests and fuss in some Muslim countries over the Mohammed cartoon is about one thing: The source, and sacredness, of the protesters’ identities have been offended, and since they feel threatened as it is in a world so different from the environment of their religious communities, they lash out, and they shout, and they burn, and they kill, and they destroy.
* * *
Their actions also manifest – as do that of fundamentalists of other persuasions – the idea that, “If everyone is not like us, it threatens and undermines the validity and greatness of our truths. So, the more people who believe like us, the better. And those who do not believe as we do, well, their lives are expendable because they deny the truth.”
THURSDAY, 23 FEBRUARY 2006
Living as if you only have one week left to live is not sustainable beyond that one week.
SATURDAY, 25 FEBRUARY 2006
There those who are ignorant.
There are those who know, and who live their lives in fear – or in fatalistic acceptance of the inevitable.
Finally, there are those who are feared.
I believe absolute statements are impossible to make because we do not possess sufficient data. Once you have accepted that and made your peace with it, it is often quite possible to continue with the rest of your life.
“How?” you may ask. By making choices every day.
Which choices are good and which choices are bad? That is what you have to figure out as you continue your daily existence.
MONDAY, 27 FEBRUARY 2006
A thought from my bike ride: “And so continues the life of Brand Smit. He has had an interesting life so far. He has met interesting people, lived in interesting places and visited interesting places. He has also spent a lot of time on his own – mostly not pleasant, but he eventually learned to use the time on his own productively. He has also managed to find love after spending many years on his own.”
TUESDAY, 28 FEBRUARY 2006
Forgot to mention something with yesterday’s thought from the bike: That text is supposed to be the introductory paragraph of a piece with a title like, “I am not Chinese – but neither are the Taiwanese.”
* * *
From my dream this morning: “Self-knowledge and stratosphere”