Friday, December 17, 2010

Taking stock

So where have I/we been? And where are we going with Conservative tendency?

1. Interaction. I want the site to be more interactive, so, if you have an interest, please click on the followers gadget and/or comment or email me (engmar3 [at] gmail [dot] com). And thank you to those who have already shown their interest, and I hope you will continue to find the time to drop by.

2. The human condition. My interests are various but are centered around fundamental questions about the universe and our place in it. I see our situation in fairly bleak terms, actually - no religious comforts. Which is why social and intellectual comforts - a compliment, a probing question, a shared interest - are so very important.

3. Randomness. I'm interested in developing my knowledge of the philosophy of mathematics and logic, especially aspects of these subjects that may relate to fundamental questions. The various types and levels of randomness which appear to underlie physical processes is my current focus, as it has potential relevance to how we see ourselves and our lives.

4. Politics. My inclination is towards quietism, not activism; but I respect activists and those more politically engaged than I am at the moment. I think the long-term political trends we are witnessing are unfortunate - especially to the extent that they involve government-initiated solutions (or supposed solutions) to social problems. Generally it is a healthier situation if individuals and families work out their own solutions to their problems as far as possible.

5. The decline of the West. I am fascinated  by the rise and fall of civilizations, and there is an awful lot of rising (in the East) and falling (in the West) going on at the moment. Cultures must be underpinned by political stability and economic prosperity and arguably we are witnessing the last throes of a two-and-a-half thousand year cultural and intellectual tradition. What can be salvaged from the wreckage?

6. Minimalism. My conservatism is a minimalist conservatism - or perhaps my minimalism is a conservative minimalism! I seek out simplicity and clarity in matters of the mind and in aesthetics. I may try to develop this idea explicitly in the new year, but it is implicit in everything I write.