Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Dani Rodrik — It’s a war of ideas, not of interests

Note that what is required here is not one more well-designed program. It is a narrative, a marketing device – a bumper sticker.
Must-read. Short.

Dani Rodrik is correct but changing minds, let alone a cultural mindset, is easier said than done. But without doing it, progressivism is wandering in a swamp of identity issues.

It's about building a vision and articulating it persuasively through a narrative that Joe and Jane Sixpack can relate to and identify themselves and their cohort with.

Here again I come back to the enduring question, "What does it mean to live a good life as an individual in a good society."

Dani Rodrik's weblog
It’s a war of ideas, not of interests
Dani Rodrik


Bob said...

Here's an idea for white, male, unemployed voters: kill yourselves
I don't know who is pushing this idea except that it is showing up in suicide statistics.

So much for the theory that people will act in their own self-interest. Mike has found that a person's world view is more important to them than making money.

jrbarch said...

It’s a war of ideas, not of interests

This cuts directly to the chase, but I don’t think people realise how deeply. ’War begins in the minds of men’.

I have learnt there are layers of conflict. When there is conflict in an individual’s mind, and he/she meets with a similarly conflicted person, then chances are it will lead to conflict between people, and conflict between people will inevitably lead to conflict between nations.

Ergo, what is the simple solution Dear Watson ....? War?????? That is an incredibly dumb-arsed solution. It completely ignores the root cause of the problems people are facing. If you cannot feel joy and gratitude for the simple fact of being alive, and extend this feeling to others, you are missing a key part of your existence. There is a sickness eating away at humanity, and this sickness is ignorance of the root cause of all conflict; and even when it is recognised, ignorance of how to deal with it.

Instead, nations point a finger at one another; no one can trust anyone else. It all happens in people’s minds and mind has gone completely off the rails. Arrogant to the point where it will sacrifice a whole country, and the people living in it. It will kill its own citizens. Mind believes its causes are more important, than humanity itself.

Remember the days when the King had to be out in front, leading his troops. Discussions were of the utmost importance in those days. Today our ‘leaders’ sit safely behind video screens, pressing buttons while the troops get blown to kingdom come. We vote to give them nuclear buttons to play with. This is not sanity. War should not be an option for a sane human being. Being alive is the greatest gift, the greatest success that any human being can be gifted. To unpack this gift, to discover and uncover the secret that your life holds, for you, are the greatest privilege and the greatest challenge. Everybody wants to live. To kill for your own reasons, to desecrate, demolish, demonise, this gift, should never be accepted. Human dignity should be accepted and the effort made to make war only a robust discussion of ideas and interests, in the effort to establish peace.

But above all, peace needs to be felt by the human heart, before the mind can begin to know its place. Conflict begins in an individual’s mind.

Bob said...


You might find this book interesting (if you haven't already seen it):

Even in mass movements, "war begins in the minds of individuals".

jrbarch said...


Yes, well the ingredients are personality types, mass movements, glued together by beliefs. Recipe for unconsciousness and its outcomes. The whole of society is a mass movement in that sense. If no one knows where the hell our society is headed to, then it’s a mass movement without an agreed destination, compass heading, or map. With X-Perts on the bridge and Captain Hope at the helm, possibly drunk or completely delusional, with no connection to the rudder (and the next nuclear storm brewing). That to me is our situation (which we ‘vote’ on). Ahhh what fools we mortals be ....!

Bob, it’s hard to be clear about this in a world full of concepts: - if you die and you have no idea who you are or why you came to this earth, or where you are going to and what is going to happen to you – that’s unconsciousness. Unconsciousness breeds FUD. It doesn’t really matter what happens on the outside (in that sense). But whatever happens has our signature on it.

There are mass movements that arise from unconsciousness; then there is a movement that arises from within. Kabir knew about that and laughed, saying his ‘meditation’ was done for him; all he had to do was sit in the swing. He said ‘oh world – get to know the Self, and wake up’. :-)

jrbarch said...

Haven’t made this disclaimer for awhile.

I have two teachers: - one for my heart and one for my head. They do not quarrel within me, and so far in my life, I have not met anyone else within whom these two so significantly reside, so that makes for a lonely path at times (when I am stupid enough to feel sorry for myself). Just about anything I say has been learnt from them, and tested in the light of my own experience; but anything I say is not said in their name. I am responsible for that.

If anyone is curious they can check out (message of Prem Rawat – at least stay on the home page long enough to hear Daya sing ‘Imagine’) or the work of a Tibetan llama around 1930~40 through his amanuensis A.A. Bailey - then make up their own minds.

In my view, the reason why we are here on this earth is to know the Self, and however one chooses to go about that business is a matter between their heart and them. My voice is very small and should be of no real interest to anyone, other than as a tiny signpost; their voices reach millions in the case of Prem and maybe a few in the case of the Tibetan. The same message echoes throughout the Ageless Wisdom and one of my favourites is Kabir who laughed a lot.

None, for me, have as much wisdom, gentleness and love as Prem. I am very proud of everything he does. Beyond words, concepts, he simply puts people in touch with their Self. It is a gift that he has. Over a million of them now, and he speaks to millions more, every year. And that is a good thing.