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Case for Tolerance in Religiously Pluralistic World

Author: Dr. Leo Igwe

Numbering: Issue 1.B, Idea: African Freethinking

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: African Freethinker

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 11, 2020

Issue Publication Date: TBD

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 818

Keywords: Leo Igwe, pluralism, religion, tolerance.

Case for Tolerance in Religiously Pluralistic World[1],[2]

Dr. Leo Igwe is the Founder of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, the Founder & CEO of Advocacy for Alleged Witches, and the Convener of the Decade of Activism Against Witch Persecution in Africa: 2020-2030. He is a friend, and boss at AfAW.

I thank the Polish Mission for the invitation to address this virtual launch of the Group of Friends of Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief in New York. I commend this initiative that fosters dialogue, tolerance, and understanding across cultures and societies.

This event could not have been organized at a better time because as I speak acts of intolerance and violence based on religious differences rage in many parts of the globe. I am drawing your attention to the plight of religious non-believers – such as Mubarak Bala in Nigeria – in reference to acts of religious violence and bigotry. Persecution and discrimination based on religion or belief are too often linked to de facto and de jure laws against apostasy and blasphemy in many countries.

The Freedom of Thought Report, published by the Humanists International has noted some of the egregious violations of religious liberty and the legal discrimination against persons whose religion or belief are not part of the mainstream.

Apostasy and blasphemy laws impinge on the full exercise and enjoyment of the right to freedom of religion or belief. Humanists International’s 2019 Freedom of Thought Report states that 69 countries still have blasphemy laws. These countries have stiff penalties including the death penalty for those who renounce their religious beliefs or express non-religious views. Blasphemy laws institutionalize religious discrimination and make religious persecution a state affair. Apostasy and blasphemy laws legitimize impunity for crimes committed in the name of the mainstream religion including forced disappearance and extrajudicial killings of persons who belong to minority religious or belief groups. Laws against apostasy and blasphemy violate safeguards and respect for diversity because these laws target minority religious and belief groups in various countries.

Incidentally, there is no one religious or belief group that is in the majority everywhere. All religious and belief groups are in the minority somewhere in the world. So it is pertinent to protect and uphold the rights and liberties of religious and non-religious minorities worldwide.

In Muslim majority countries, blasphemy laws target Muslim minorities and other minority religious or belief groups including Christians, Hindus, Traditionalists and Atheists. Apostasy legislations hamper and stifle the exercise of freedom from the mainstream religion or faith. In Hindu dominated societies, blasphemy legislations are used to persecute Muslims, atheists and other minority groups. Apostasy and blasphemy legislations endanger and threaten human rights everywhere.

Distinguished delegates, to eradicate acts of intolerance and violence based on religion or belief, it is important to abolish apostasy and blasphemy laws. It is imperative to dismantle structures and mechanisms that legitimize religious intolerance, oppression and discrimination.

In a religiously diverse world, individuals hold different, conflicting, critical, and contradictory ideas and views. People express thoughts and beliefs that others may find offensive or annoying. The essence of diversity is dissimilarity, not similarity, disagreement, not agreement, variety, not sameness. For the full exercise of the right to freedom of religion or belief and preservation of diversity in the world, tolerance is necessary. Tolerance is the glue that knits together disparate ideas, and beliefs, turning religious diversity into a resource, into a source of strength, not weakness, cultural enrichment, not impoverishment.

Tolerance has no meaning if it is predicated only on views and expressions that one finds pleasant, agreeable, and acceptable. Tolerance is of no importance or consequence if it is only about respectful positions and concurring propositions.

In a world plagued by religious persecution, violence and oppression, tolerance is needed to safeguard the plurality of views and beliefs and guarantee peace, stability, and progress.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Founder, Humanist Association of Nigeria; Founder & CEO, Advocacy for Alleged Witches; Convener, Decade of Activism Against Witch Persecution in Africa: 2020-2030.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 11, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/case-for-tolerance-in-religiously-pluralistic-world.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Waleed Al-Husseini on Women and Islam

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 1.A, Idea: The Tale of the Tribe: International Apostates

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: Apostasia

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 10, 2020

Issue Publication Date: TBD

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Once Per Year

Words: 635

Keywords: ex-Muslim, France, Islam, Waleed Al-Husseini, women.

Waleed Al-Husseini on Women and Islam[1],[2]

Waleed Al-Husseini founded the Council of Ex-Muslims of France. He escaped the Palestinian Authority after torture and imprisonment in Palestine to Jordan and then France. He is a friend. 

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: For women who leave the religious fundamentalism seen in some of the world, what is the consequence to the family, especially if the culture is based on honour?

Waleed Al-Husseini: Women, they have the most complicated situation if they stay Muslims; imagine what the situation is if they left Islam, some of them if they just stop wearing hijab the family will stop talking with her, and the others will start to call her whore!

That is why some ex-Muslims women still wear hijab, even here in France. If you talk about the closed society, yes, many got killed in the name of honour, because they just did something not consonant with Islamic values!

Jacobsen: Can a woman lose the financial and family support system if they renounce the faith?

Al-Husseini: That is what happened for some of the women who leave in a modern society like Europe. The family just stop talking to her and cut all the relations with her. Some of them had this result just because she had a non-Muslims boyfriend. She went to live with him! Not just about faith!

This situation of women was one of the main reasons for me to leave Islam, because I refuse to treat my mother and sister or my girlfriend with Islamic values, which look to women like today’s citizens in the society.

Jacobsen: Many ex-religious people continue to fear hell while not believing in it. It becomes a form of long-term, even lifelong, trauma for them. Are there any unique forms of trauma experienced by women who leave the faith?

Al-Husseini: The same one but what is most insulting is the treatment of her like a whore.

Jacobsen: What have been some hopeful stories of recovery from the fundamentalist religion that you have seen in France among the ex-Muslim population?

Al-Husseini: Yes, we had a hard story for a girl. She was with her family and forced to wear hijab since 10-years-old, during her school time, and in that time she was thankful for French law, which made forbidden the hijab in school.

After when she started working, she was happy for the work of the law that forbade the hijab, but after all this, she started her life alone after her family wanted to let her marry the age of 17 for some man. This was the main reason for her to leave the family and be far away from them.

Now, she has a good life and is happy! She left her family since 15!

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Waleed.

Image Credit: Waleed Al-Husseini.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Founder, In-Sight Publishing.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 10, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/waleed-al-husseini-on-women-and-islam.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and Apostasia by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, In-Sight Publishing, and Apostasia 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and Apostasia with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Mubarak Bala: In Defence of Free Speech and Critical Inquiry

Author: Dr. Leo Igwe

Numbering: Issue 1.B, Idea: African Freethinking

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: African Freethinker

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 9, 2020

Issue Publication Date: TBD

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 817

Keywords: Africa, freedom of expression, Leo Igwe, Mubarak Bala, Nigeria.

Mubarak Bala: In Defence of Free Speech and Critical Inquiry[1],[2]

Dr. Leo Igwe is the Founder of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, the Founder & CEO of Advocacy for Alleged Witches (AfAW), and the Convener of the Decade of Activism Against Witch Persecution in Africa: 2020-2030. He is a friend, and boss at AfAW.

In the rabid quest to justify the disappearance of a Nigerian Humanist who made an innocuous post on Facebook, some Muslim fanatics have continued to peddle the notion that the said post crossed the limit of free speech. Did it? They have been relentless in voicing out this misguided notion and in publicizing a mistaken thesis: “You have a right to free speech, but you cannot insult another person’s religion”. One wonders if this set of Muhammadans ever listens to themselves or tries to discern the contradictions and inconsistencies therein. In this piece, I argue that this proposition encapsulates an acute misunderstanding of the limit of free speech amongst the jail-or-execute-Mubarak-Bala Muslims. Blinded by hate and ignorance, these Muslim fanatics have not understood the inherent contradiction and the counterproductive nature of their supposed limit to free expression.

Expressions that highlight other sides of a prophet or a religion are consistent with the values of free speech and critical inquiry because they are manifestations of independent thinking. Such expressions enrich knowledge and understanding of the prophet or the religion. They are not violations of moral or religious decencies as Muslim fanatics suppose. To hold a critical view is not a crime. Free speech and critical expressions are important for the generation and spread of ideas and beliefs. They are necessary for meaningful navigation of a world characterized by a diversity of thought and rapid flow of information and misinformation. Islam owes its origin and spread to free speech, to an unfettered expression of ideas. Islam is a religion that is critical of other religions. Islamic teachings contain views and opinions that differ from pre-existing notions; they make a caricature of faiths and beliefs. The prophet of Islam was critical of other religions and espoused ideas that ridiculed and sometimes radically departed from the knowledge and ideas of his time.

Thus if views that are critical of any religion are insults then Islam is an embodiment of insults, contemptible, and provocative ideas. If holding views that are critical of a prophet or a religion means insulting the religion or prophet, then, the prophet of Islam was a partaker in this exercise. The prophet of Islam proposed teachings that could be interpreted as insulting to pre-existing and successive prophets, to Christianity and other religions. By implication, the Quran is a codification of insults, of disrespectful and annoying propositions. The Hadith is a scroll of blasphemies. If, as some Muslim fanatics have proposed, the said Facebook posts by Mubarak Bala crossed the limit of free speech, then the teachings of Islam and the preaching by Islamic scholars and clerics also cross the limit of free speech. Muslim sermons are verbalized disparaging remarks on other religions and other prophets or philosophers.

But critical views are not insults on any religion or any prophet. To hold a critical idea is not a crime but an intellectual duty to humanity. Unfortunately, for centuries, Islamic demagogues have held people intellectually hostage in many places. They have censored the thoughts and writings of individuals. Islamic authorities have demonstrated a disdain for freedom of expression and criminalized Islam-critical expressions. Muslim clerics and theocrats have used various means and mechanisms to silence the voices of dissent while trying to perpetuate their religious doctrines, dogmas, and absurdities. It is pertinent to draw attention to their mistaken sense of limit to free speech, and the necessity of critical inquiry and independent thinking, tolerance of religiously offensive remarks in a culturally pluralistic Nigeria.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Founder, Humanist Association of Nigeria; Founder & CEO, Advocacy for Alleged Witches; Convener, Decade of Activism Against Witch Persecution in Africa: 2020-2030.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 9, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/mubarak-bala-in-defence-of-free-speech-and-critical-inquiry.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interviewer: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 23.A, Idea: Outliers & Outsiders (Part Nineteen)

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020

Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 5,844

ISSN 2369-6885

Abstract

Marv Westwood is a Professor Emeritus in the Counselling Psychology Program, and recipient of the Royal Canadian Legion Professorship in Education. His major areas of teaching and research are focused on program development, teaching and delivery of group-based approaches to help clients make effective life transitions. Prior to coming to UBC, he taught at McGill University (1973-80). and prior to that St. Francis Xavier University (1971-73). Over the past 25 years he has led the development of the UBC Veterans Transition Program to help promote recovery from war related stress injuries for which he received both the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals in 2005 and 2013. In 2012 he established the Centre for Group Counselling and Trauma (CGCT) for teaching and research in the area of group work. He is advisor to the President’s initiative for the development of UBC Veteran Friendly Campus. Currently, he is Senior Advisor for the Institute of Veteran Education Transition (IVET). George Belliveau is Professor of Theatre/Drama Education at the University of British Columbia, Canada, where he currently serves as Head of the Department of Language and Literacy Education. He co-produced, directed and performed in Contact!Unload. His research has been published in various arts and theatre education research journals and books. He has written six books, including a co-edited one with Graham Lea, Contact!Unload: Military Veterans, Trauma, and Research-based Theatre (UBC Press, 2020). They discuss: culture; particular issues around masculinities; forms of trauma; actors; mythologies about masculinity; some of the fallouts; we give them these bribes socially; recruitment into the army or the armed forces; play by Rzgar Hama Rshed, Soldierland; different issues men and women have in the military; and recommended researchers or organizations.

Keywords: drama, George Belliveau, Marvin Westwood, men, recovery, trauma, war.

An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery[1],[2]*

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

1. Scott Douglas Jacobsen: What are the gender associations within various parts in our culture?

Professor Marvin Westwood: There are masculinities in first responders, military, and police, where there are definite roles and cultural conventions that traditionally socialized males adhere to. It plays out in all aspects of their life for better and for worse. So, what you see, sometimes, in the military is the traditionally socialized masculinity, they value being protective. They mention to a female troop, “You stay back. We’ll protect you. Don’t worry.” They get pissed off [Laughing]…

Jacobsen: …[Laughing]…

Westwood: …because they’ve signed up to do the action. Then the guys feel misunderstood and the women feel misunderstood. So, we do have a modern day kind of reckoning about “let’s get clear about what culture of masculinity you’re ascribing to.” It can be helpful when we think about working with men as particular cultures because it becomes depoliticized to a great extent. Thank, God! [Laughing]

2. Jacobsen: Yes! [Laughing] George, when you’re coming at this, when we’re talking about this particular issues around masculinities, how are you viewing this? How is this playing into some of your professional work?

Professor George Belliveau: I am not an expert in this area. Theatre is definitely my domain, and education, but I can speak in relation to having worked with the veterans and a lot of the challenges that we kind of face. Sometimes, we didn’t really face them. We, often, get feedback from audience members. That they were grateful for the stories. They were longing for stories of women’s experiences, and how we could integrate more of a narrative of women. Sometimes, it was easy to answer that question because the call out was a Movember men’s health project. So, we were funded to work with men. That was the easy answer. Maybe, the second level answer was the work that Marv does in therapeutic enactment with the veterans is to create this space, where they’re going to open up and work through some of their injuries. They’re going to keep moving forward. The theatre was an extension of that. In some ways, to fill a curve, and say, “It was going to be a mixed group.” It didn’t feel right in that moment. As the project advanced down the road, new iterations came up, we had achieved some of what we wanted to achieve in terms of the combination of therapy and theatre. Then we were a little bit more nimble to include more women on stage. In terms of masculinity, I’m not making a claim for one side or the other. This project happened to be situated with men. We honoured that. That was it.

3. Jacobsen: Marv, within the field of counselling psychology and psychology even generally, what is the current state of discussion around issues that men deal with disproportionately negatively? Those forms of trauma that tend to be more male-specific, men-specific.

Westwood: Okay, there are conversations, which are going on now. Again, it has to return back. When you think about therapy and counselling, there’s something referred to as cross-cultural counselling. That’s respecting the norms and the influences of sub-groups. What we try to do is teach clinicians to understand that the issues that men have a major in because of their cultural shaping for the most part, they have a very strong sense of self-reliance, individualism. It is a sign of a weakness if they have to ask for help. So, unlike the gendered culture of most women in our culture, they are socialized to be more affiliative and seeking help to get what they need to become healthy again is not a threat to their identity. For many traditionally socialized males, to get help, it is a called a failure of self. They’ve internalized that as weakness. Now, the problem is, of course, you can be upset about that. You can blame them. Or what you can say, “Let’s understand their culture, where they come from.”

I’ll use an example of the police or the military. They are acting very badly and recklessly sometimes, when they are scared and threatened. So, they might start medicating more aggressively because they are scared inside, but they will never acknowledge it. Fear gets manifested as rage and anger. Because it is very threatening to their psychological self if they feel fear. They cannot ever admit that they are fearful. So, they project this out in other ways and get into trouble. What we would say, “Okay, it is time for us to not be judgmental about these males who do this, but try to understand this in a therapy context and create an environment to getting them moving from a sense of defense of self-sufficiency to affiliative nature and being allowed to deal with the traumas and injuries.” One of the great things about understanding culture and masculinity. Traditionally socialized males, they maty never approve help, but they approve helping others. So, our groups have become very successful with the veterans is we meet them. We say in groups of 6 or 8. They have trauma-related injuries with deployments overseas or traumas drawn up even as kids – believe it or not. We say, “None of you are here for help. Are you?” They say, “Nope!”

Jacobsen: [Laughing].

Westwood: We say, “Good, welcome! But how many of you are here to help other guys?” “Yup!” All their hands go up. So, what we do, we built a program, “So, let’s get down to work then.” You have a whole team of people who are extremely helpful. In the process of helping others, George depicts this in the theatre of the military to some extent. In that, it is very empowering for injured males to get in touch with their emotional “baggage,” as they call it, that they’re carrying through the enactment of helping others drop their “baggage.” You can see what I’m saying. They are very ready to help. We use enactment to do this. In the process of doing this, they say, “Hey, that’s me too. That happened to me! I got fucked up too!” We really don’t criticize or judge them when they come into therapy, “You’re not a compliant client.” We have to understand their culture. That way, they become very cohesive as a group. They become very helpful. They become very caring. Of course, underneath all of that, as you can imagine, they see how they suffered a great deal in childhood with emotional deprivation as young males because they usually have fathers who were traditionally socialized males, at least in the military. We are unpacking that whole thing. It seems very, very successful with one of the principles of traditional masculinity. Does that make sense to you?

4. Jacobsen: Yes, I want to touch on the terminology they’re using too, but, first, I want to go to George as well. George, when you’re working with actors or those who will be that which the actors will represents, individuals, so say veterans with trauma, observing, interacting, learning from their experiences. How do actors who may not have that trauma to that level derive from within themselves that form of resource that they can call upon when they are trying to act out a particular scene that’s replicating, to some degree, traumatic event(s)? To convey to the audience, this is a fact of life for those who have gone through a wartime scenario.

Belliveau: So, first, I will speak from a theatre side as opposed to the project Marv and I collaborated on. As actors, you’re trained to play all kinds of roles. Most great plays are either wounded individuals from the classics like Arthur Miller to contemporary work with Tennessee Williams. In many ways, they are broken families and broken individuals. As an actor, you’ve arrived to play, even if it is a classic piece like Shakespeare. You want to play the tragedy. Depending on the theatre tradition and training, there is a misnomer of Stanislavsky acting, where people try to feel everything the character feels. You do get caught in the tropes as an actor. But really, it is about technique and figuring out what you can relate to, and keep distance from, so you’re in control of the emotions. It is not the emotions in control of you. In terms of that, I think that’s acting. That’s why it is called acting. There’s no real thing bigger than if you’re playing someone who is broken-hearted because of a family incident, etc. There are variations of authenticity, etc. But it is all part of the work belt of the actor.

With our project with the veterans, the veterans performed, for the most part, their our stories. We’re all making up stories in the process. We’re all pretty close at the truth in some part of the process. But as I listening to Marv, some of the veterans would start to tell the stories of other people. That they were quite comfortable with.

Westwood: Yes.

Belliveau: Eventually, they would tap into their own story. We were interested in their stories. So, they could authentically share their stories. My initial goal was none of the veterans/performers would tell their own story. But then, we got into a situation. One of the veterans said, “I don’t want anyone else to tell my story because they might fuck it up.” But actually, the next levels of that had nothing to do with not being authentic. He didn’t want others to feel the pain that he felt because he was still distinguishing between what is theatre and what is life. So, the levels of them sharing stories of self and others waxed and waned. As Marv said, they really, if anything would bring them back, said, “How am I supporting my fellow veterans?” At the height, we ha 6 performing veterans. One of them was just starting the process of joining the military. 5 core people had either served in Afghanistan, Rhodesia, and other places, other conflicts. But they not only want to support one another. What became vivid, they wanted to support the actors, the cast, the counsellors, to help counsel them. They event wanted to help the actors. In many ways, they did. The three graduate students who were on it and others on the periphery really got unstuck with some of the challenges that they were facing in their own lives because of the sensitivity of the veterans.

So, I think the later version, as I think more about it, of Unload, which is a variation of Contact!Unload: Military Veterans, Trauma, and Research-Based Theatre. It highlights how a veteran is actually there telling their story, has gone through this kind of therapeutic process, is still struggling with these things never fixed, but really shines by helping others/civilians to enable them to move into civilian society. That’s very military-still oriented, and still pretty masculine in some ways.

Westwood: Yes, it is. Scott, the goal here is doing the project. It had quite a change in social perception in the military community as recognizing that a healthy masculinity does include expressing – they would call it – and releasing the “baggage” of trauma, as they called it in therapy, “Unfucking their shit.” “Unfucking their shit” are the terms that they used. Once they saw others doing it, and being successful, they started doing it. It has changed a lot of the attitudes of the people in 2 or 3 of the armories here in Vancouver who attended the performance because George’s play. They were shocked when they saw it because they were military performers, not actors. It legitimized the conversation that they could talk about back in the regiments that they carried back from Afghanistan or Yugoslavia, or wherever. So, it had an educational outreach function. Also, for women in the audience, I think it had a compassion and understand in breaking stereotypes of masculinity because Hollywood continues and the media people tend to reinforce that these guys are real assholes and uncaring, but it is all a real defense, Scott. It is being reinforced by the movie industry, the pretense of autonomy. As a group, I think they undermined some traditionally held beliefs about not getting the tools to get healthy again, and where you might kill yourself.

5. Jacobsen: Even with the dramatic statement at the end there, you did diplomatically state it. If people are portraying this on the big screen, in a false manner, they are profiting off stereotypes.

Westwood: Exactly.

Jacobsen: So, these are mythologies about masculinity and then profiting off the stereotypes based on the mythologies. The real question for me, then, “In what manner did you fractionate, break apart, some of those stereotypes based on some of the responses coming back from individuals who had seen themselves in a play?” You can say, “I broke apart stereotypes about masculinities.”

Westwood: Yes!

Jacobsen: However, what manner did they break apart? What was broken apart about the stereotypes about masculinity? Other than a general statement using one word: autonomy.

Westwood: Oh, okay, you want to do this one.

Belliveau: That’s a good question. Again, I am not talking from the therapeutic side. The therapy was continuing as they kept doing the theatre project. They did hold on. There was a still a masculinity to hold on and a rah-rah camaraderie. In some ways, some of them needed that because they – Scott, and you may know this, Canadian military is very different than American military – are spread out, come home. One is in Port Coquitlam. One is in Port Moody. One is in East Van. The idea of the legion of them coming together. That was another generation. So, the camaraderie and the masculinity. They needed some of that. To create the space, it was wonderful. Theatre mimics it as well; there is a camaraderie because there is an understanding. I think where they were able to parse it out and break it down, when they were conveying that to a general audience. Part of our job in creating the theatre piece was helping the audience because they weren’t an insider. We need to go step-by-step with not only therapeutic enactment on stage, but also what it is like to be in the military, to transition home. Everything had to be translated in ways. I think during the translation, a lot of things occurred with their lived experiences or experiences themselves. It opened up a lot of discussion amongst themselves. I will pause there.

Westwood: Also, the other stereotypes that got altered. The audience could see these individuals on stage who had been injured terribly badly in a military context. They talked about having empathy. They never, ever thought about how much grief some of the soldiers carry when they come back when they lose their buddy who dies beside them in a military vehicle. They really show very clearly that their buddies are as important to them, as their partners in life or as close as a family member. So, when they get killed or die, the loss is extreme. Some of them never recover. They say things like, “It should have been me that died.” Some of the suicides that take place, as we know from interviewing them; they feel they don’t deserve to live because their buddy fell. And they didn’t. The audience became very aware of how the military reinforces this helping each other. But if something goes wrong, you didn’t have your buddy’s back. They carry a lot of guilt and shame. They do an enactment, recreate the scenes. For example, the buddy who got killed and they cannot save, or whatever. We bring them back alive. They actually speak to the person and say, “You have to go on with your life. I died. You didn’t. Will you live for me? So, it releases them. It isn’t just a stereotype about masculinity. You also buy into the idea of “at all costs. You’re there to protect your mate.” If something happens, there’s a lot of guilt and shame. That’s a lot of injuries that happen to people. When you unpack that, you realize it can happen to anybody. The audience is surprised by the amount of pain, psychological pain, that they can endure in battlefield when the losses are great. If a child, a friend in Afghanistan, dies who brought them water all the time, he had to be killed because somebody in deployment had it reported that he was carrying weapons and ammunition, and was going to blow up the compound. So, to save the compound, they took his life. It haunts them forever.

6. Jacobsen: How prevalent are some of the fallouts of this? The mental health issues, the suicidal ideation, etc.

Westwood: Oh! If you look at returning military, only about 25% of people in deployment have what is called PTSD, but untreated PTSD leads to acute depression, isolation, and then suicidality. Suicidality rates can be as high as 12% both in the United States and, I think, here, if untreated. Some of the suicides happen years after. They call it post-war casualties, but because without therapy. They never dealt with regrets and the observances that they had made. In our program, that’s the main goal, get them in as soon as they get back. Suicidality risk goes down very significantly and with depression rates. They get on with their life. They see the injury of war as normal into an abnormal event. It is all the ones who don’t get help, don’t get seen. They’re at risk. The audience understands that. Look, in my family fighting in the Second World War, of my dad’s friends, over half of them were alcoholic. All they were doing were self-medicating because of the all the shit they experienced and the things they had to do. They’d go to legions and become chronic alcoholics, where they died. People call them “heroes.” So, there’s nothing. That masculinity thing is false heroism. Fortunately, projects like George and I are doing help break those stereotypes.

7. Jacobsen: Why do we give them these bribes socially, these titles?

Westwood: Why do we give them these bribes? It is for compliance. Because you want to use them up. You want them to join and give their lives away. The military, unfortunately, is a real reason why they invest in stereotypes. However, as I learned from the vets over the years, they say, “All I wish they had said to me was that when I signed up. I should have signed up with informed consent. I never had any idea as to what I was signing up for. I was 17 or 20. I am glad I signed up. It was a great event. It was a great training. I represented this country. It is very honourable. But nobody signed me up for the psychological pain of what I would have to absorb endure that could threaten me.” Now, we are teaching people. When they go into the military, you should know that you’re heading into something, but there is treatment when you go back.

Belliveau: When I think of that, soldiering is an old, old profession as well. There’s an honour. There’s a sense people belong to something. There’s an appeal to that. There’s a cost in the reality of it.

Westwood: I wanted to say, Scott. You should know. Some of the veterans that were in Afghanistan, when I went back to Afghanistan. They took me to where these things had happened. Many of them wanted to see the water projects they worked in or the schools they helped build. When they are on the deployments serving, they are, often, not there as combatants. They are there as world servers and peacekeepers. They really like to get attached to the people. In Quebec and Ontario, the Canadian military went into the seniors’ hospitals. We couldn’t handle it. They wouldn’t think twice about going. They go into spots to do those things. Most are very worthy and important parts of any society. It is just that because there are many males. They [Laughing] don’t know that they are entitled to a very effective treatment when they get out. That’s what they are starting to learn.

8. Jacobsen: If we look at the history of the United States with regards to recruitment into the army or the armed forces, often, they are not going to be rich, white families sending their children to these things. Often, it is going to be men of colour, poor men, etc. Is that the same case here, in Canada?

Westwood: Yes, it is. I’ll tell you. Until recently, the majority of our recruits, especially post—WWII, came from the poor areas, the Prairies, and some of the Maritimes, who have a higher military representation than southern Ontario or the West Coast. Because it was a way out. It had security. A lot of these young men came from divorced families, the army was symbolic of a positive father figure. They were, often, quite traumatized in youth due to poverty or race. They will do anything to get some security and recognition. One thing that they do is recognition. They get to belong again. I think humans in general are very affiliative and want to belong to a group. If you look at gangs, why do people join gangs? There is good motivation. They want to be with other people doing things. It is just that what they end up doing, if they are criminal gangs, is getting into trouble, but sports and military are a healthy way of getting some identity, some recognition. But hey get punished, of course, and bullied in the process, and so on. Those are some of the injuries that we deal with, which is the shame and the bullying happening in the army, whether language, skin colour, indigeneity, nerd behaviour. It doesn’t matter.

It can be quite brutal. So, those are some of the therapeutic corrections that we attend to when they come back. It is helpful for them to acknowledge that it occurred there. It isn’t just sexual harassment in the military. There are all sorts of other darker stories playing out, as in the busines world, but just different things. They are vulnerable that way.

9. Jacobsen: Now, George, I recall a 10- to 15-minute commentary by Marv and you on the play by Rzgar Hama Rshed, Soldierland. There was a general conversation around the ways in which the actors had moved. When you’re training actors to represent military types, military psychology, in behaviour, how do you or how would you bring about that realism in terms of how they are controlling their body, being very methodical, and almost semi-robotic in the ways in which they are pacing a stage and approaching a performance?

Belliveau: So, again, with this particular project, because, for the most part, the military men were representing military men, that was wonderful. But in our first iteration, we had civilians who had to be trained. This was beautiful because when you’re doing these community-based projects; it’s not about creating artistic verisimilitude, which doesn’t exist anyway. Because what is depicted in society, it can be so diverse. But there were some key things that any military audience member would see if a civilian as starting to march on the right foot versus the left.

Westwood: Yes [Laughing].

Belliveau: That their arms were swinging higher. But what became wonderful, they could, as military people, go, “Oh, he’s definitely British. This person is from a particular era because they march and salute this way.” So, we really relied on the veterans teaching civilians. I don’t know how far they got with the civilians because the amount of rehearsals was probably insufficient. I think we had probably already reached part of the goal because the veterans had shared some of their insight and tacit knowledge. Skilled actors can play a veteran than a veteran can play themselves.

Westwood: [Laughing].

Jacobsen: [Laughing].

Belliveau: Good actors just do. The physicality, good physical actors would get everything, every beat, bang on. So, audience members might say, “They did this wrong.” If you investigated it, the actor is very skilled. The reason it was “wrong” was because it was on purpose. We were not dealing with veteran actors. We were dealing with volunteer civilians for the most part. That became a really important part. The veterans really want the civilians if they were playing those people to move and act in a particular way. Again, it was country-based to a certain extent. Even Luke was commando, the royal marines would do things this way [Laughing]. It was all part of it. As we toured with it in other places, that conversation continued.

Westwood: Also, Scott, some of the civilians, a minority of them in the performance really valued being taught by the soldiers about stance, posture, discipline. It was good for the esteem of the military because the military were teaching things about themselves to the civilians, which they really appreciated, about their discipline. It benefitted them as well.

Belliveau: You mentioned Paul Martin earlier [Ed. off-tape.]. Harjeet Sajjan saw the tail end of the performance at one of the armories here. He had come for an event there [Ed. Beatty Street Drill Hall.]. He saw it when we were in Ottawa on Parliament Hill. Same as Erin O’Toole, Erin has seen different iterations. Certainly, he has been in touch with us more. They would, as politicians as well; the authenticity for them, who didn’t have the movement and language of military. They saw something in it. That probably none of the politicians could see. That was always very powerful to get it right.

Westwood: When people came from their regiment to see the performance, and the actors were prepared as performers, the guy who saw it said, “This is really authentic,” and would really buy into it. “They’re like us. They’re really soldiers. If they go for help for depression and dysfunction, and so on, I can do that too.” It was really good for the authenticity. On a lighter note, I would say. We had an example of getting validation when they performed this in Canada House in London, Ontario for Prince Harry because he had just come back from Afghanistan. He was quite affected during the show because he stood [Laughing]…

Jacobsen: …[Laughing]…

Westwood: …during the whole performance. Eye to eye with the actors, I thought it was so military. They just looked at each other. He was affected in a positive way. That was validating for them because the regiment that he belonged to was a sister regiment to the Canadian company. So, their whole travel to the U.K., participating in this, expanded their awareness. We all really appreciated how they represented us at the Canadian High Commission.

10. Jacobsen: Are there different issues men and women have in the military?

Westwood: You’re like this story. When we decided to run therapeutic groups for military, we knew that we would have to have a women’s group and the men’s group. They had to be the same kind of group, but divided by gender. I should say, “Sex,” not gender as we found out, because so many of the women had experienced the trauma of sexual harassment of males with whom they serve. So, of course, they can’t be in a therapy to community, but not all did. We found out when we created a women’s program. Some of the women, a few of them said, “Look, why are you putting me in the women’s program? I want to be with the soldiers,” and the majority of them were men. So, it is a more masculine gendered focus in a woman or a person who is a female. They were really annoyed that they couldn’t be in the other group because they identified with the culture of the military. That they are a minority within a minority. We had to accommodate them as best we could, but we didn’t expect that. We thought: a women’s group and a men’s group. Some of them went, “No! I don’t belong there. I belong in the men’s group. I serve with them. That’s where I want to be.” So, the binaries that we hear about all the time don’t always work. Scott, sorry, but I have to wrap this up. Do you have anything else to ask me before I go?

11. Jacobsen: Sure, real quick, any other recommended researchers or organizations for individuals who want to look more into this, or books?

Westwood: I would say right off: go on the website or look to the VTN, Veteran Transition Network. It is online. It is Canada-wide. They have access to all the questions that people might have, the public and the military. That’s a very good start. The other good start is Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health and Research, CIMVHR. I would say, VTN will be one thing to get them going. They can be contacted. They are very helpful about getting help for family members. Our program runs through them. There is another link. The whole play is on the UBC, Peter Wall site. The whole Contact!Unload is on the site with a pre-discussion. It was done in the BMO Theatre. People were talking about military before. Then the veterans speak a little afterwards. So, that’s all professionally filmed. The play highlights Marv’s therapeutic enactments. You get to see it with veterans. So, the play is only 30 minutes long. That’s another resource that people can tap.

Belliveau: And Scott, another thing I want to say to you. Do you know that some of the people that we have worked with who have some of the most acute traumas were the journalists who covered the military?

Jacobsen: Yes, I am aware of this. I know some, not personally, but I know of some, even Pulitzer Prize winning, who have spent extensive time in war-time and talk about being haunted during the day by some of the things that they have seen.

Westwood: Yes, what we do, one of the Ph.D. students who has approached, not you personally, other journalists is that they get so much other vicarious trauma because everyone loves a journalist to be upfront about all that stuff. It takes a real toll on them. Anyhow, it’s really good talking to you, man.

12. Jacobsen: Thank you very much.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Professor Emeritus, Counselling Psychology, University of British Columbia & Recipient, Royal Canadian Legion Professorship in Education; Professor, Theatre/Drama Education, University of British Columbia, & Head, Language and Literacy Education, University of British Columbia.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau; Full Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020: https://in-sightjournal.com/insight-issues/.

Appendix II: Citation Style Listing

American Medical Association (AMA): Jacobsen S. An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery [Online].August 2020; 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau.

American Psychological Association (APA, 6th Edition, 2010): Jacobsen, S.D. (2020, August 8). An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and RecoveryRetrieved from http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau.

Brazilian National Standards (ABNT): JACOBSEN, S. An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery. In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A, August. 2020. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau>.

Chicago/Turabian, Author-Date (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott. 2020. “An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery.” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A. http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau.

Chicago/Turabian, Humanities (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott “An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery.” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A (August 2020). http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau.

Harvard: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and RecoveryIn-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A. Available from: <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau>.

Harvard, Australian: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and RecoveryIn-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A., http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau.

Modern Language Association (MLA, 7th Edition, 2009): Scott D. Jacobsen. “An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery.” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 23.A (2020):August. 2020. Web. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau>.

Vancouver/ICMJE: Jacobsen S. An Interview with Professors Marvin Westwood and George Belliveau on War, Men, Trauma, Drama, and Recovery [Internet]. (2020, August 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/westwood-belliveau.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees co-copyright their interview material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two)

Interviewer: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 23.A, Idea: Outliers & Outsiders (Part Nineteen)

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020

Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 1,997

ISSN 2369-6885

Abstract

Anas El-Husseini is a Member of the Glia Society. He discusses: high-IQ societies; why the high-IQ societies seem to congregate online more than in-person; such a turnover in the number of high-IQ societies; the ethical leanings and political orientations of these high-IQ societies; ethical leanings and political orientations; the Glia Society; founding by Paul Cooijmans in 1997; the Glia Society focused on Europe; joining the group; qualifying for the Glia Society; Thoth; contributing to it; “A Megalomaniac’s Waterloo”; and the high-IQ community.

Keywords: Anas El-Husseini, ethical leanings, Glia Society, high-IQ, high-IQ societies, political orientations, Thoth.

An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two)[1],[2]*

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

1. Scott Douglas Jacobsen: When we’re looking at high-IQ societies, what are some areas for improvement?

Anas El Husseini: First is communication, especially in Internet-based high I.Q. societies. Private forums, email newsletters and journals belonging to high I.Q. groups had lost a lot in terms of member activity in the last decade. It seems that the older members were more prolific, whereas the newer generation got more busy with their own lives or more distracted in the Internet. It seems that people nowadays tend to communicate more through their smartphones and favorite apps, so older web technologies have become an obsolete way of communication to them. The second area of improvement is collaboration, and that’s also correlated with the group activity level.

2. Jacobsen: Why do most of the high-IQ societies seem to congregate online more than in-person?

El Husseini: It costs more to create physical rather than a virtual (online) high I.Q. societies. For instance, someone has to pay for rents, take care of logistics, etc. On the other hand, an online presence of a society costs much less and is easier to manage. Moreover, members are usually dispersed over the world, so it may not be ideal for them to travel to one place at the same time to congregate. The relatively small number of members is also another factor. One can see that, in I.Q. societies with lower I.Q. threshold like Mensa, they periodically hold meetings and physical events for members living within the same country or area.

3. Jacobsen: Why is there such a turnover in the number of high-IQ societies? Many either defunct, in limbo, or functioning merely as branding cover for a personality, a theory, or as a parody on the whole notion of super-high-IQs and accurate measurements at those levels.

El Husseini: The lifetime of a high I.Q. society depends first and foremost on its administrator. If the administrator is persevering, and gives enough of his time to satisfactorily complete his administrative duties, then the society will usually survive for very long. If the administrator or few members in the group are successful at engaging other members in discussions or activities, that is also a big plus. Societies lacking those traits do not last long and die silently. The intent and the motivation of the founder, the rules of conduct within the society and whether they’re enforced well or not, and the strictness in the requirements for admission also determine whether the society is standing on a firm ground or will soon go down with the slightest quake.

4. Jacobsen: What tend to be the ethical leanings and political orientations of these high-IQ societies, e.g., democratic, authoritarian, or anarchic?

El Husseini: The ones I’m a member in are democratic. I suspect most of the others, if not all, are so too. I doubt any of them are anarchic. Members of high I.Q. societies are both intelligent and have high self-esteem. They will naturally reject any sort of dictatorship or chaotic ruling enforced upon them by a group that they willingly opted to join and are free to leave.

5. Jacobsen: Out of those forms of ethical leanings and political orientations, what one seems to bring out the best behaviour and community construction for the high-range?

El Husseini: Since we are talking about people belonging in the same high range of I.Q., democracy seems like the best fit. Depending on the society, the range of I.Q. can vary widely between members. Some societies accept those with I.Q. at 120 or above (S.D. 15) such as Tensa society (they rebranded themselves later and changed the admission I.Q. to 125), while others require an I.Q. as high as 190 (S.D. 15) such as the Giga Society. There are also unique societies like the Grail Society where the admission I.Q. is higher than 200 (S.D. 15), although it does not have any present members so far. One person out of 20 possesses an I.Q. of 125 or more, but the rarity of an I.Q. of 190 is at 1 out of a billion. So even if we call all members of high I.Q. society intelligent, there is still a large I.Q. gap that may hinder reaching consensus or make political/ethical leanings vary to a certain degree. There are also people who qualified to I.Q. societies by fraud, or the rules were too lenient and admitted them although they were not qualified. Those are the kind that usually brings out trouble and controversy within an I.Q. society. The stricter the admission rules, and the higher the I.Q. score of admission, the more the society is peaceful, organized, and civilized.

6. Jacobsen: What is the Glia Society?

El Husseini: The Glia Society is an Internet-based high I.Q. society that admits people at the 99.9th percentile (which approximately corresponds to an I.Q. of 146.6 at a standard deviation of 15). That means that theoretically 1 out of 1000 of the adult population qualifies to join that society.  One must submit an I.Q. test report that demonstrates he has the required I.Q. or above to be admitted. There is a long list of accepted I.Q. tests for admission, and those include many of Paul Cooijmans’ unsupervised high I.Q. tests. Upon admission, the member has access to a private journal called Thoth, a member-only email newsletter, social media groups, and the ability to take Paul Cooijmans’s I.Q. tests for free, among other privileges. The society was created to facilitate contact and collaboration between intelligent people

7. Jacobsen: When was it formed?

El Husseini: The society was founded by Paul Cooijmans in 1997, who is also currently its administrator. It has gathered several hundred members from all over the world since then.

8. Jacobsen: Why is the Glia Society focused on Europe?

El Husseini: Although the society was nerve-centered in Europe in its early years, it grew to be more global with time. It is more accurate to say that the majority of members now originates from Europe, North America, and East Asia.

9. Jacobsen: When did you join the group?

El Husseini: I joined in December 2012.

10. Jacobsen: How did you qualify for the Glia Society?

El Husseini: I qualified by obtaining an I.Q. score of 149 (S.D. 15) on the “Psychometrically Activated Grids Acerbate Neuroticism” test.

11. Jacobsen: What is Thoth?

El Husseini: Thoth is the Egyptian moon god. It is also the nickname of the future Grail Society member. Moreover, Thoth is the name of a journal that only Glia Society members can access and read. The journal publishes the content of authors verbatim and allows them complete freedom over what they want to publish. Non-Glia members are allowed to send content to be published in the journal as well, although they are not allowed to read it.

11. Jacobsen: Have you contributed to it?

El Husseini: Twice several years ago.

12. Jacobsen: I love the phrase “A Megalomaniac’s Waterloo” by Cooijmans. It is the coda on the separation of the wheat from the chaff of the high-range. Many come to these tests thinking rather highly of their innate gifts, which seem apparent while not as high as assumed by them. How would you describe the world of the high-range?

El Husseini: Megalomaniacs are annoying living beings. Yet, their delusion with themselves can become a good source of humor sometimes. I believe Paul Cooijmans published many megalomaniac messages that were sent to him, either because of a dissatisfaction of a score on an I.Q. test or due to reasons related to admissions to Giga Society. One can find some of those messages on a page entitled “Expressions of gratitude from satisfied candidates” in Paul’s I.Q. tests website. Needless to say, the world of the high-range does not open its doors to this kind of people. People of the high range are able to correctly observe and assess their own abilities, and they all possess a great amount of inner order that correlates with being very organized, more knowledgeable and remarkable in their verbal and logical abilities. Megalomaniacs usually lack at least one of those traits.

13. Jacobsen: Why did you join the high-IQ community in the first place?

El Husseini: I joined in order to be in contact with other intelligent people, especially with the absence of I.Q. societies that have physical presence in my neighborhood. I was also fond at the time of I.Q. tests, and high I.Q. communities were a source of tests and puzzles of a rare and high quality.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Member, Glia Society.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two; Full Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020: https://in-sightjournal.com/insight-issues/.

*High range testing (HRT) should be taken with honest skepticism grounded in the limited empirical development of the field at present, even in spite of honest and sincere efforts. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population.

Appendix II: Citation Style Listing

American Medical Association (AMA): Jacobsen S. An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two) [Online].August 2020; 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two.

American Psychological Association (APA, 6th Edition, 2010): Jacobsen, S.D. (2020, August 8). An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two)Retrieved from http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two.

Brazilian National Standards (ABNT): JACOBSEN, S. An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two). In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A, August. 2020. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two>.

Chicago/Turabian, Author-Date (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott. 2020. “An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A. http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two.

Chicago/Turabian, Humanities (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott “An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A (August 2020). http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two.

Harvard: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A. Available from: <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two>.

Harvard, Australian: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A., http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two.

Modern Language Association (MLA, 7th Edition, 2009): Scott D. Jacobsen. “An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 23.A (2020):August. 2020. Web. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two>.

Vancouver/ICMJE: Jacobsen S. An Interview with Anas El Husseini on the Glia Society, Community Sensibility, and Tests (Part Two) [Internet]. (2020, August 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/husseini-two.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees co-copyright their interview material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interviewer: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 23.A, Idea: Outliers & Outsiders (Part Nineteen)

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020

Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 1,511

ISSN 2369-6885

Abstract

Anja Jaenicke is a German Poet and Actor. She discusses: the common emotive themes; highly productive; “Pen Gwyn – The white head”; “Das Spiegelbild des Seins”; “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton”; and the books at Amazon.com.

Keywords: Anja Jaenicke, Germany, Isaac Newton, John Dee.

An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four)[1],[2]*

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

1. Scott Douglas Jacobsen: For some of your artistic productions, based on the images you sent me, there is a sense of dreariness, angst especially in “Das Spiegelbild des Seins” the sense of not know what is going on what is going to happen while desperately wanting to know what will happen. What are some of the common emotive themes of the work for you?

Anja Jaenicke: If you are referring to the scene photos of “Das Spiegelbild des Seins” (The Mirror Image of Being”) it is very easy. The Film is based on a novel written by me and it is a crossover between mystery and classical psycho thriller, where psycho implies angst and the fact that you do not know what comes next is the suspense or the thrill.

Regarding my other works I think I am rather versatile and there are not many common themes in my creations.

2. Jacobsen: You have been highly productive. Yet you lament a culture of mediocrity in the country. You are not the first to note that to me. Why?

Jaenicke: Well if there are others who say so, maybe there is something to it?

Now during the Covid 19 Pandemic the whole misery becomes visible. But I am an optimist. Art has survived many crises since the dawn of time. It might adapt and it might change but as long as there is humanity there will be art.

3. Jacobsen: For “Pen Gwyn – The white head” It is a very self assured critter. What is the inspiration for this particular production?

Jaenicke: The Pen Gwyn has a human face inside of him. It characterizes his human nature. His name is Werner.

The inspiration for the adventures of the penguin Werner and his friend Klaus is the film maker Werner Herzog and his favorite enemy the actor Klaus Kinski.

The books are in some way a homage to them.

4. Jacobsen: In some more of the photographs sent of “Das Spiegelbild des Seins” some of the central characters are portrayed in the same dismayed position, especially the actor Joachim Bernhard known from the Academy Award nominated movie “Das Boot”..

Jaenicke: The storyline of the film “Das Spiegelbild des Seins” is about Sophia and her mother who live in a twilight reality based on religious fanaticism. Joachim Bernhard excellently plays the character of Dr. Leid, a psychiatrist who wants to understand more and by doing so he is pulled deeper and deeper into the abyss of Sophia’s schizophrenic world until the realities collapse and melt with each other to leave the audience without a compass in the midst of chaos. (See IMDb – Das Spiegelbild des Seins 2016).

5. Jacobsen: What is the meaning of the piece “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton”? I am reminded of a famous phrase from Newton. For the connection with John Dee, what is it?

Jaenicke: We as a species are one. Every thought that can be thought of has been around for some time before. But it can only come to frustration and fully materialize at the right moment and under the right circumstances. Newton was so close to a theory of relativity but he couldn’t grab the last pieces. He was caught in his time and his conventions of thinking. It needed Albert Einstein hundreds of years later to fully understand the concept. John Dee was a great Mathematician and Astronomer in his own time and some of his ideas might have influenced or even illuminated Sir Isaac later. Every knowledge is based on knowledge gained by people before us.

We carry this old knowledge within us, like a demon until it is ripe to be released and understood.

6. Jacobsen: People can find some of the books at Amazon.com written by you. What books took more time, more focus, became a point of intrigue and emphasis?

Jaenicke: Every work is different, some come spontaneously others need more time but they all need focus and they all are loved. Luckily I am a very focused and systematic person.

Some people think art and creativity come easy but that is not quite true.

All creations need logos. Only if you walk down the path of logic until its end, where it becomes illogical you can open yourself to imagination and creativity.

It is a bit like in the poem “Page d’ecriture” by Jacques Prevert, where we find us in the middle of a math class at school “Two plus two equals four” says the teacher, “repeat!” and the child sees the wonder bird at the window and the child and the bird play with each other while the teacher shouts “Stop the nonsense!”

All the children hear the song and they play with the wonder bird until the two and the two disappear and the one and the one are no longer two, the blackboard becomes rock again, the ink becomes water and the pen becomes bird.

Maybe we all should become a bit child again.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] German Poet and Actress; CEO, HIQ-MEDIA-POOL INC.; Member, Poetic Genius Society.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four; Full Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020: https://in-sightjournal.com/insight-issues/.

*High range testing (HRT) should be taken with honest skepticism grounded in the limited empirical development of the field at present, even in spite of honest and sincere efforts. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population.

Appendix II: Citation Style Listing

American Medical Association (AMA): Jacobsen S. An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four) [Online].August 2020; 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four.

American Psychological Association (APA, 6th Edition, 2010): Jacobsen, S.D. (2020, August 8). An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four)Retrieved from http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four.

Brazilian National Standards (ABNT): JACOBSEN, S. An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four). In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A, August. 2020. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four>.

Chicago/Turabian, Author-Date (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott. 2020. “An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A. http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four.

Chicago/Turabian, Humanities (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott “An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A (August 2020). http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four.

Harvard: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A. Available from: <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four>.

Harvard, Australian: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A., http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four.

Modern Language Association (MLA, 7th Edition, 2009): Scott D. Jacobsen. “An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 23.A (2020):August. 2020. Web. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four>.

Vancouver/ICMJE: Jacobsen S. An Interview with Anja Jaenicke on Productivity, “Pen Gwyn – The white head,” “Das Spiegelbild des Seins,” and “John Dee on the shoulders of Issac Newton” (Part Four) [Internet]. (2020, August 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/jaenicke-four.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees co-copyright their interview material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Letter from Mubarak’s Wife

Author: Amina Ahmed

Numbering: Issue 1.B, Idea: African Freethinking

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: African Freethinker

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020

Issue Publication Date: TBD

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 792

Keywords: Amina Ahmed, Nigeria, Mubarak Bala.

Letter from Mubarak’s Wife[1],[2]

To:

 

The Senate President

Sen. Ahmad Lawal

 

And

 

Speaker of House of Representatives

Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila

 

The National Assembly

Federal Republic of Nigeria

Three Arms Zone

Abuja, FCT

 

6th August, 2020

 

PLEASE GIVE ME PROOF MY HUSBAND IS ALIVE – AN OPEN APPEAL TO THE SENATE PRESIDENT AND SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

I am Mrs. Amina Ahmed, the wife of Mubarak Bala, the President of the Humanist Association of Nigeria.

 

My son, Sodangi, was born on March 17 this year. On March 31, my husband had to travel to Kaduna for work and we said our goodbyes. Little did I know then that Sodangi and I would not see Mubarak for months and by August we would not know if he is alive or dead.

On April 27, 2020, S.S Umar & Co of Zoo Road Kano, Kano State made a complaint about a comment that my husband had posted to his Facebook page. They said the comment was “provocative and annoying to the Muslims”. The next day, Mubarak was arrested in Kaduna and he has not been seen, or heard from, since.

The Kaduna police informed Mubarak’s lawyers that he had been passed to the custody of Kano police on April 29. Despite many requests, Kano police have flatly refused to allow Mubarak’s lawyers to see him or to contact him by ‘phone or email. Even after his lawyers secured a court order on June 25, that ordered the Kano police to allow defence counsel access to Mubarak, Habu Sani, the Kano Police Commissioner has refused to cooperate with the order.

I swear my heart stopped beating when I heard Mubarak was in Kano. He had received death threats from that state in the preceding weeks including one from a police officer who said he would kill Mubarak if he should set foot in the state. Given Kano’s history of religious violence and killing, these threats must be taken very seriously.

On May 8, Mubarak’s lawyers petitioned the Federal High Court for enforcement of his fundamental human rights. I hoped this high priority case would resolve matters quickly, but it did not. Four hearing dates have been issued but the case has not been heard: May 25 was a bank holiday; June 18, the judge was absent; July 9, defence counsel was absent; July 16, defence counsel was absent. Mubarak’s lawyers were told the next available date would be in October. I am reminded of the saying, justice delayed, is justice denied.

I am not a lawyer, but I do know that every person in Nigeria is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. And that means, Mubarak, has been incarcerated as an innocent man for more than 3 months. I also know that every citizen detained is entitled to meet with their lawyers for legal advice. This right has been denied to my husband. Finally, I believe, citizens should be charged within 24 hours or be released. This right too, has been denied Mubarak. My husband is a chemical engineer, a kind and gentle family man who would never hurt anyone. Why is he denied important rights that are freely given to the most violent armed robbers?

I pray that my husband be treated according to the laws of Nigeria. I pray that he be tried so we can find out if he is guilty of any wrongdoing or not.

 

But, above all, I beg you Senators and Honourable members of House of Representatives, the men and women who swear to God to uphold the rule of law in my country, on my bended knees, I beg you please let me have proof that Mubarak is alive, please let me see my husband and let Mubarak hold his son again. This is all I ask of you.

Yours sincerely,

Mrs. Amina Ahmed

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Wife of Mubarak Bala.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 8, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/letter-from-mubaraks-wife.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Ask Takudzwa 5 – Revivatory Democracy: Civic Awareness, Colonial Repression, and Human-Centered Politics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 1.B, Idea: African Freethinking

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: African Freethinker

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 6, 2020

Issue Publication Date: TBD

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 555

Keywords: Humanist Society of Zimbabwe, Takudzwa Mazwienduna, Zimbabwe, Zimbabwean Secular Alliance.

Ask Takudzwa 5 – Revivatory Democracy: Civic Awareness, Colonial Repression, and Human-Centered Politics[1],[2]

Takudzwa Mazwienduna is the informal leader of Zimbabwean Secular Alliance and a Member of the Humanist Society of Zimbabwe. This educational series will explore secularism in Zimbabwe from an organizational perspectiveand more. He is a friend and former boss at the now-defunct Cornelius Press in South Africa.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: If we’re looking at the ways in which Zimbabwe lost one of its leaders, and the ways in which religion continues to influence political life, how can a secular outlook, a humanistic worldview, provide an alternative to the pervasive religiosity in politics?

Takudzwa Mazwienduna: A secular worldview would definitely inspire citizens to participate in the political discourse, becoming active members and reviving democracy. Most Zimbabweans turn to religion rather than facing their political problems like corruption. Civic awareness would also increase if the Zimbabwean population cease to see their leaders as gods whose faults they choose to ignore although they suffer the consequences. Zimbabwean politicians also endorse and appease churches that allow child marriages and deny children medical care or vaccinations to ensure their votes. This definitely comes under scrutiny from a secular perspective.

Jacobsen: If this is done, and if this is accepted, how might this change the overall landscape of policymaking?

Mazwienduna: Policymaking will be based on reason and human-centred, rather than blindly nationalistic and culture centered. Both the government and the society would have more respect for human rights and repressive legislation from colonial times that is still in law today would be removed.

Jacobsen: What have been the central laws preventing full equality of the freethinkers and humanists in Zimbabwe?

Mazwienduna: The Zimbabwean constitution upholds secularism, but people act as if it was a theocracy anyway because of low civic awareness. The majority of Zimbabweans believe that the country is a Christian nation when the constitution says otherwise. There are however anti-gay laws in the constitution and homosexuality is punishable by lengthy prison sentences. There are colonial repressive laws that have been maintained to outlaw protests and free speech such as the Public Order and Security Act (POSA). Zimbabwean leaders still use these laws to silence activists, civil society and their political opponents.

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Takudzwa.

Mazwienduna: It is always a pleasure Scott!

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Founder, In-Sight Publishing.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 6, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/ask-takudzwa-5-revivatory-democracy-civic-awareness-colonial-repression-and-human-centered-politics.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and African Freethinker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.  All interviewees co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

Freedoms for French Ex-Muslims

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 1.A, Idea: The Tale of the Tribe: International Apostates

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: Apostasia

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 3, 2020

Issue Publication Date: TBD

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Once Per Year

Words: 556

Keywords: ex-Muslim, France, freedom, Islam, Waleed Al-Husseini.

Freedoms for French Ex-Muslims[1],[2]

Waleed Al-Husseini founded the Council of Ex-Muslims of France. He escaped the Palestinian Authority after torture and imprisonment in Palestine to Jordan and then France. He is a friend. 

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: If you could change the laws in France to better reflect the interests of the ex-Muslim community, what would the change in the laws be for you?

Waleed Al-Husseini: In general, I would increase the freedom of speech and make it include everything, because we are in France.

We have more than 300 issues against freedom of speech. It is just 7 in the USA. If I could do this in France, it will be great.

Jacobsen: How are fundamentalist groups attempting to hijack the conversation about ex-Muslims?

Al-Husseini: They just talk about us like cheats of the nation. That we should be killed. Also, this has been said by many French imams. On the internet, there are many Muslims attacking, insulting, accusing, or threatening us.

That is why some of us even close their social media after so many bad threats.

Jacobsen: How is the assertion that criticism of Islam is racism simply illogical? Why is this used as a tactic? In short, how is a set of ideas plus suggested practices not to be conflated with a race?

Al-Husseini: That one of big debate leftists do not want to understand it for their own goals. Islam is not a race. Here the issue, Islam is not African or Arab, so that has never been a race. It is one of the ideas the Left idolizes.

We should criticize all ideologies. That is why we really need a redefinition of terms and to use things for their actual names, not mixing like what happening now everywhere in this world.

Jacobsen: Where do Muslims make legitimate criticisms of ex-Muslims?

Al-Husseini: Nowhere yet.

Jacobsen: Where do Muslims make incorrect assertions about ex-Muslims?

Al-Husseini: This exists everywhere; any Muslim you can meet.

Jacobsen: How is the public conversation changing around religion in France, and about those who leave religion?

Al-Husseini: In France, things become more limited, like what I said before, in the name of peace for society. Nothing to offend Muslims, or increasing the hate for Muslims, these things have always limited our speeches.

Jacobsen: Thank you for the opportunity and your time, Waleed.

Image Credit: Waleed Al-Husseini.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Founder, In-Sight Publishing.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 3, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/freedoms-for-french-ex-muslims.

License and Copyright

License

In-Sight Publishing and Apostasia by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at www.in-sightjournal.com.

Copyright

© Scott Douglas Jacobsen, In-Sight Publishing, and Apostasia 2012-2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Scott Douglas Jacobsen, and In-Sight Publishing and Apostasia with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. All interviewees and authors co-copyright their material and may disseminate for their independent purposes.

An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interviewer: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 23.A, Idea: Outliers & Outsiders (Part Nineteen)

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: August 1, 2020

Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 7,956

ISSN 2369-6885

Abstract

Christian is a Philosopher that comes from Belgium. What identifies him the most and above all is simplicity, for everything is better with “vanilla flavour.” Perhaps, for this reason, his intellectual passion is criticism and irony, in the sense of trying to reveal what “hides behind the mask,” and give birth to the true. For him, ignorance and knowledge never “cross paths.” What he likes the most in his leisure time, is to go for a walk with his wife. He discusses: boxing; the greatest boxer of all time; what boxing gives him; psychology; does psychology qualify as a science in some ways; does psychology not qualify as a science in other ways; originally become interested in the question of psychology; mathematical codes in the Kabbalah; found anything so far; the original Kabbalah; looking for mathematical codes; the central purpose of looking for codes in the Kabbalah; the health risks in boxing; any definitive conclusions on psychology as a science or not; the beatings; Tyson; biological father; mother’s defence and/or reaction to the beatings by his stepfather; the boxing gloves and the pushing ball; Catholic school; years in the Catholic school; corporal punishment; the bullying; win:loss ratio; flesh of the ear; psychology; psychological constructs; apparent reflections of real knowledge about human psychology; Noetics; a legitimate form of inquiry and thinking; What would delegitimize it as a form of inquiry and thinking; the roots of Noetics, etymologically; the neologism; objects of study, relations orienting objects of study, and operations by which to perform studies on the objects and the relations in Noetics; siblings or extended family during the beatings; the rest of the family’s opinion; biological father and stepfather; to physical beatings or emotional-verbal berating; lifelong impacts; the psychology of the abuser; the Catholic hierarchs; parts has psychology mistaken for the whole; some of the more modern manifestations of this automatism in psychology; a Yeshiva; the Catholic school; Rabbi Akiva and Shimon bar Yorjai; (White) kabbalah and “black kabbalah”; Madonna; 14 years of familial, schoolmate, and educational authority beatings; “methodological reiteration” and “constant and indefinite process of trial and error tests”; biological father; divorce; a son of a divorced family and someone abused by a replacement male authority figure; forming the parts of a systemic structure; a systemic structure; evolution of homo sapiens tell us about such a hypothetical systemic structure via its biological substratum; zero connect between the conscious and the unconscious; “burst”; the difference in treatment of siblings; intelligence is carried via the mother; the sociocultural strictures on women in our societies; the cathectized energy; women “bear everything”; the two pure substrates and the mixed substrate; this mega-structure; mega-structure means something like a complex; the more intelligent tend to have fewer children; separated, disenfranchised, and left apart, estranged, from parents and siblings; the hypochondriatism; the existential humanistic theoretical models failed; why traditional religion failed; atheism and Humanism failed in current form; the differences one might find in the brain; fear of rejection and loneliness; the reckoning for high-IQ societies; others of high intelligence; common misconceptions of noetics; “logical principles”; “validity” and “truth”; confusing validity with truth; the unifying bases, premises in its field of inquiry; critical while friendly inquiry; mis-use or abuse as a system of inquiry via faith-based traditions or through purely empiric traditions; others who pioneered this field; current leaders in this field; frauds proposing to be part of this field; and the real and Truth.

Keywords: Christian Sorensen, Gnoseology, Noetics.

An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine)[1],[2]*

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

1. Scott Douglas Jacobsen: When did you get into boxing?

Christian Sorensen: That was when I was about eight years old, and my godmother gave me a pair of gloves and a pushing ball, that I hung on a tree in my house.

2. Jacobsen: Who was the greatest boxer of all time (to date)?

Sorensen: In my opinion Mike Tyson.

3. Jacobsen: What does boxing give you?

Sorensen: The chance of being able to relive, the constant beatings my stepfather gave me, and they gave me in a Catholic school of wealthy people, for being physically weak and different, but facing this time, from the opposite lane, bigger and stronger fighters than me.

4. Jacobsen: What is psychology?

Sorensen: It is a discipline, that studies the behaviour and the human mind, their conditioning factors, and the variables that can modify them.

5. Jacobsen: How does psychology qualify as a science in someways?

Sorensen: Currently, besides from presumptuously claiming to be a science, it does not qualify with anything else.

6. Jacobsen: How does psychology not qualify as a science in other ways?

Sorensen: I think that psychology throughout its history, has constantly placed the wagon before placing the oxen, since it has been quite proliferating from the point of view of its models and theoretical systems developments, but at the same time, has done it as if building a house of cards, because ultimately these are almost completely devoid of any scientific basis. In this sense, unlike the empirical-experimental sciences, basic stages that are necessary and are fulfilled by any one of them, have been skipped, due to the fact, that psychology has ignored what should always precede as a must, any type of theoretical construction. The aforementioned is evident enough since this discipline has not even been able, to adequately define until now the most basic issues, such as occurs for example with the object of study, and with the adaptation of the scientific method, in relation to its characteristics and nature. Consequently neither has been capable, to define the research hypotheses associated in turn with the independent and dependent variables, which aren’t really empirically refutable, nor has it had the scope to propose no kind of scientific law, as a logically unavoidable preamble for any further progress.

7. Jacobsen: When did you originally become interested in the question of psychology as a science or not? It is an inherently interesting question, especially when I was working in three psychology labs at once. It was a tacit assumption in the affirmation, in some, and in the negation, in others.

Sorensen: I was interested in that problem during my doctorate in Philosophy, because I was struck, by the presumption through which it was as an undeniable fact, that psychology is a science. I think that by doing so, psychology runs the risk of taking the parts for the whole, in other words to fall into an automatism, when imagining that because there are theoretical models with a clear experimental inclination, such as occurs with the radical behaviourism of B.F. Skinner, and with cognitive-behavioural and systemic approaches, that then wrongly it could be assumed as something necessarily, its scientific status. Therefore according with the above, what actually happens, is that the attempts to flirt with science, can only be accepted as nothing more than mere manifestations of a sort of scientific mimic, similar to what occurs when it is said, that a swallow does not make Summer.

8. Jacobsen: When did you become interested in mathematical codes in the Kabbalah?

Sorensen: It was a process, some years ago that coincided when I lived with my family in the orthodox city of Bnei-Brak in Israel. There I was studying in a Yeshiva, and after visiting the tombs of Rabbi Akiva and Shimon bar Yorjai in Meron, although in that environment it was generally not considered correct to do so, I was motivated to study deeply the Zohar, since I had the hypothesis that there were mathematical codes, which are susceptible to be deciphered.

9. Jacobsen: Have you found anything so far?

Sorensen: I think that at least, I have the certainty of what it is not. In my opinion, the Kabbalah has different levels of depth or elevations, and from that point of view, its highest level would have to do with mathematical codes, but not in the form of numerology and gematria, which is how it is usually conceived, when assigning a numerical value to each of the twenty-two characters of the Hebrew alphabet, from which different combinations and interpretations are made afterwards. Rather, I believe that these mathematical codes, need to be found in what I will denominate as Black Kabbalah, which would be the opposite of the aforementioned, since they should be deciphered along and between the unwritten spaces, of the rows or lines that form the Torah texts.

10. Jacobsen: When did the original Kabbalah begin?

Sorensen: I believe that the origin of the Kabbalah, coincides with Abraham’s life as a patriarch. What is relevant about this historical landmark, is that it corresponds to the change in the nature of the Kabbalah, since at that time, it was a popular knowledge to which everyone had access. It was a little after that, that took a radical turn by becoming a hidden and secret wisdom, regarding which only a few had access, in concrete those that were expert in Torah and who lived strictly according to the Halacha. This last, was until about twenty years ago, indeed after that it was opened again, in order to spread its wisdom among those who were interested in acknowledging this path and put it into practice.

11. Jacobsen: How does looking for mathematical codes in the Kabbalah differ from looking for mathematical codes in other things?

Sorensen: The mathematical codes in other things, allow to reach some result, while in the codes of Kabbalah no results are reached, since their codes as such are an end in itself.

12. Jacobsen: What would be the central purpose of looking for codes in the Kabbalah?

Sorensen: The purpose is to take the reason beyond its own limits, that is to say, to be able to cross this dimension of which we’re aware in order to enter another, without knowing what we are going to find out, or what are the laws that will act on it, but at the same time by pre-sensing it as existing, since in certain way the latest implies no matter what plane is alluded, some degree of effective reality. Somehow it is similar, to expect to have an encounter with a loved one, after having only seen its silhouette, nevertheless with the intuition that once the veil is removed, it will be possible to contemplate the truth of its figure through the eyes of the soul.

13. Jacobsen: What are the health risks in boxing?

Sorensen: All the conceivable risks, including death. I somehow think, boxing is a way to get in touch with one’s own thanatian drive, and lastly to dance with death.

14. Jacobsen: Have you come to any definitive conclusions on psychology as a science or not, or, at least, on sub-disciplines within the remit of psychology?

Sorensen: Nothing is definitive, since nothing is more definitive than change. I think that it may still take about two or three centuries for psychology, to reach a scientific status, because in some way, it is similar to a chain that still lacks links, therefore can’t be recognizable as something delimited and distinguishable. For now, in my opinion, it is only a discipline that doesn’t own a respectable body of knowledge. Therefore, practically nothing can be said about its validity or not, due to the fact that occurs with it almost the same which happens with arts. Indeed both are legitimate knowledge, in an aesthetic sense, but are not valuable regarding their theoretical structure, from a measurable perspective. In other words strictly speaking, basically in the case of psychology, is not possible to determine if it is or it is not, a reflection of a given object in reality, in consequence can be concluded, from a scientific prism, that its theoretical models and systems, actually aren’t knowledge.

15. Jacobsen: What age did the beatings start? What age did the beatings stop?

Sorensen: They started when I was about two years old, when they forced me to walk with a belt pulling my stomach, because I didn’t want to do so, and they ended up at school when I was sixteen years old.

16. Jacobsen: Have you seen that clip of him ducking and dodging in latter middle age with incredible adeptness and speed, Tyson?

Sorensen: I did see him training for his fight with Evander Holyfield. He is in very good shape, and despite his age, Tyson has maintained his power and speed.

17. Jacobsen: Where was your biological father?

Sorensen: A few blocks from where I lived. I think, he never realized what was going on with the abuses. I believe that even though this topic, regarding the episodes of abuses and my adulterous origin, were an open secret, around it there also was a sort of very good compartment of information. Until his death, he was a partner in businesses with my stepfather. When I was a kid, I used to go to his house to play with my two half brothers, however when I had to do my preparations for the Bar-Mitzva, which we were going to do with one of them, since we had the same age, my stepfather suddenly objected it, and prevented me, from having contact with him and my half brothers again.

18. Jacobsen: What was your mother’s defense and/or reaction to the beatings by you stepfather?

Sorensen: Actually apart from praying, I think that nothing else.

19. Jacobsen: Do you still have the boxing gloves and the pushing ball?

Sorensen: They were kept in my parents’ house until not long ago, but I think that after they moved; they got rid of those things.

20. Jacobsen: Why attend Catholic school?

Sorensen: Because apart from the fact, that this school was socially very well seen, since it was frequented by wealthy families, my mother despite being of Jewish origin from her mother, and coming from a family that for generations, was secular and freemasonic, suddenly decided in life, while being married, to deny her origins and family traditions, by becoming an extremist Catholic, and by convincing my stepfather, to convert from Lutheranism to Catholicism.

21. Jacobsen: How many years in the Catholic school?

Sorensen: Six years.

22. Jacobsen: Was corporal punishment part of the school system?

Sorensen: In my particular case, I think so, since it was evident that the teachers and authorities endorse it, despite this situation, was not a generalized fact seen with other students. The way it was channelled, was through my classmates, and higher-level students.

23. Jacobsen: Why the bullying in the school? I recall Professor Noam Chomsky describing anti-Semitism so ‘thick that you could cut it with a knife’ back in his day.

Sorensen: As with all the actually unopened secrets, this case was not the exception, since everyone knew my story, but cynically nobody spoke openly and straightly about it. Here there was a lethal mixture, because on the one hand there was a strong anti-Semitism, due to the fact that my mother and I were considered pigs marranos, and also because she was seen as a whore, who was called to atone for her sins. I remember that several times, while my mother was seen passing by the large window of the classroom, the teacher and my classmates began to make anti-Semitic comments, and to say insults treating her as a prostitute, which right away triggered me to come to her defense, by being indeed openly sarcastic and scathing. Every time this occurred, I confronted them as usual, except on one occasion when the pan turned. That time as usual, they were laughing at my mother, but instead of having several fronts opened, I focused exclusively on the teacher, and like a belldog I did not loosen him, until he had no choice but to remain silent, and withdraw flushed with shame and rage from the classroom. Afterwards the priests wanted me to apologize, but since I refused to do so, they punished me suspending me from classes. Anyhow it was useful what I did, because even though the insults towards her continued as hallway rumors, at least they stopped uttering them in public.

24. Jacobsen: What is the win:loss ratio for the boxing bigger and stronger fighters in general for you?

Sorensen: 0:1 respectively, since regardless of the record of battles won, I don’t know any of them, that either for health reasons or for leading a life dissipated and wild, hasn’t lost everything in their existence.

25. Jacobsen: Any thoughts, or emotions really, onTyson’sappetite for flesh of the ear?

Sorensen: It was a desperate cry of helplessness, for not tolerating the frustration of being defeated in that match, and on his return to boxing, when he was already old, and after having an undefeated career.

26. Jacobsen: Does psychology qualify as a “discipline” on this level or merely as one on paper and not in practice?

Sorensen: I think that psychology, is similar to a paper tiger, since without even judging it, feels itself as if it was a science, when actually it is not in any sense. Nevertheless, it could be treated as a discipline, but not as an art, because unlike the latter, and although possesses a theoretical body, that strictly speaking, and due to the reason that is not validatable, from an empirical-experimental perspective, is neither knowledge, has from the other side, the intention of constituting scientific theoretical systems, through its work. In other words, while it is holding a deficiency in this context, on the other hand guides its intentionality, towards a last end. Therefore it is deducible to infer, that the scientific status for psychology, in a perfeasibility sense, which in turn, I would denominate as methodological reiteration, is associated with a constant and indefinite process of trial and error tests, based on a temporary asymptote, where the goal searched, should be reached at a certain indeterminate point, although this must be identified with a theoretical infinity.

27. Jacobsen: What psychological constructs seem to be delving into some level of deeper truths about the human condition and the human being?

Sorensen: I think that psychoanalytic models, as they deepen the understanding of the functioning of the unconscious and of conscious mechanisms, and the systematic procedural cognitive models as well, because they manage to study and integrate cognitions and feelings, with behaviours and inter-individual relationships, as forming parts of a systemic structure.

28. Jacobsen: What parts of psychology as currently practiced, in doctoral research and after, seem to hint at some roots – maybe using the aforementioned psychological constructs? Not necessarily “knowledge” as previously defined, but, rather, partial images or apparent reflections of real knowledge about human psychology.

Sorensen: I think that fundamentally it is circumscribed to neuro-psychology, since through it, the psychological functioning, that is to say the behaviour, cognitions and affections, are landed to a biological base or substratum, which means that between the psychological and the biological factors, one of them tends to be automatically scientized.

29. Jacobsen: What is Noetics?

Sorensen: It is the critical study of knowledge, that seeks to value it, in relation to its formal logical validity, and to the ontological reality.

30. Jacobsen: What demarcates this as a legitimate form of inquiry and thinking?

Sorensen: The logical principles.

31. Jacobsen: What would delegitimize it as a form of inquiry and thinking?

Sorensen: To confuse validity with truth.

32. Jacobsen: What are the roots of Noetics, etymologically?

Sorensen: It comes from the Greek word noetikos, which means, what is related to the nous, that strictly speaking signifies the capacity to intellegy immediately an idea, that is to say without the need, as occurs with logos, of the intermediation of discursive reasonings.

33. Jacobsen: Why the neologism?

Sorensen: Because a man is like a planet, since it doesn’t have holes. Therefore needs neologisms, to emphasize the fact of having its own world, and for leaving spaces in language, due to the reason that metaphor cannot give it.

34. Jacobsen: What are its objects of study, relations of orienting the objects of study, and operations by which to perform studies on the objects and the relations in Noetics?

Sorensen: Noetics is equivalent to gnoseology, therefore encompasses all the objects of thought, including those that regard intuition, in the sense of intus legere, and of the epistemic ones as well, which are related to science.

35. Jacobsen: Where were your siblings or extended family during the beatings or the talk within the family, if any, about the beatings?

Sorensen: I was the oldest one. I had a godmother, who was Jewish and a psychologist. She was always very concerned about me, and several times confronted my stepfather, when he found out that I was beaten or mistreated. Every year, in my birthdays, we spent the whole day together. Once, she gave me a pair of sneakers, that I loved very much, and I had wanted them for a long time. When I got home, my stepfather forced me to return them, threatening me not to tell her the real reason, because he had warned me not to ask those sneakers, since as a Jew I had to get used to receiving only second-hand gifts. When I went to her, I was very scared, but even though I tried to find justifications, she realized what was going on, and immediately went to confront him. The short story of it, was that I managed to keep the sneakers, and my stepfather had to resign himself and could not reprimand me.

36. Jacobsen: What was the rest of the family’s opinion of your stepfather?

Sorensen: My stepfather, as father, was absolutely different with all my half brothers. He has always been very loving and concerned, and has never beaten or mistreated them. In turn, they love him very much, and have always seen his parental figure as a good role model. My mother, for her part, has suffered a lot with being married in every way, but has never done something, because she has always preferred her comforts above anything else. The rest of the family, has always been clear about the abysmal differences he made with me in relation to my half brothers. Even it could be said, that they were scandalized by these abusing behaviours, and in fact many times they teared their clothes for this reason, but in summary, they preferred never to get too much involved into it, as a manner of avoiding any kind of conflicts.

37. Jacobsen: How many times did your mother marry or remarry? What about your biological father and stepfather?

Sorensen: My mother has been married only once. What happened to me, was a slip within the marriage, that has been kept with seven locks in order to maintain social appearances and a good reputation. When my mother was dating my stepfather, she introduced him with my biological father, who was, in turn, the boyfriend of her best friend since they were girls, so that they could do business with each other. With the passage of time, my mother lost her best friend, because this last never forgave what she did being friends. After a while they got divorced, and they both continued to have businesses in common, although with a tense and distant relationship, until he died almost thirty years ago.

38. Jacobsen: What do beatings do to children? How do young men and adolescent boys, even quite young boys, react to physical beatings or emotional-verbal berating?

Sorensen: They harm them in every way, by leaving wounds, that although they can lick them alone, as dogs do to heal themselves, can never be erased, because they remain as indelible traces of suffering. I think that they react depending on each case, with a lot of frustration, anger and fear, for feeling powerless, of not being able to do anything to change that situation, and at the same time, they feel guilty and responsible for believing that they are the cause that ultimately provoked these abuses.

39. Jacobsen: Do you believe there are lifelong impacts from these things, these actions, on the young?

Sorensen: For this life and the other if there is any.

40. Jacobsen: What is the psychology of the abuser?

Sorensen: To joyfully take advantage of the weakest, and if suffering is showed and mercy is implored, then to continue until they burst.

41. Jacobsen: How did the Catholic hierarchs react within this context of the beatings?

Sorensen: By supporting them, and participating with psychological abuses.

42. Jacobsen: What parts has psychology mistaken for the whole?

Sorensen: I think that the existential-humanistic theoretical models, including the transpersonal and bio-energetic psychology.

43. Jacobsen: What are some of the more modern manifestations of this automatism in psychology?

Sorensen: Everything that has to do with the development, and sale of techniques and therapeutic approaches, that offer outcomes that in most cases only have placebo effects, and when they could have any results, these are not sufficiently objectified.

44. Jacobsen: Why were you studying in a Yeshiva at the time?

Sorensen: Because I wanted to accompany the son of my wife, who was living there, and because some rabbis who were considered Tzadikim, estimated that I was blessed by God for the intelligence I had, and they proposed to me to study for becoming a rabbi.

45. Jacobsen: Do you believe the Catholic school wealthy, elite, and anti-Semitic environment carved an independence of mind and a steadfastness in spite of the difficulties of life for you?

Sorensen: I think so. I also think, that it taught me to relativize things, to integrate the good and bad aspects of the objects, and to have a very sharp tongue as well. Sometimes though, paradoxical things happened, due to the fact that many times my mother caught my attention, when I was a child, because according to her, since I was five years old, I had done psychological bullying to my stepfather, who afterwards reacted with anger. I take advantage of mentioning this, because he was also involved in the mistreatment of the school, matter that was recognized by himself, since he had asked the authorities of the school, to do what was necessary, in order to teach me to be more humble. In this regard, I remember that when I was about eight years old, to some extent I liked to debate existential issues, since in this way I had the access key to place him at a crossroads. In concrete, I enjoyed to get to the point in the discussion, where I heard that his stomach was starting to make strange noises, and he had to interrupt abruptly the conversation, for going right away to the bathroom. The fact that he had indigestion, for listening to me, was the moment, in which without the need of using violence with aggressive words or blows, I felt the certainty of having achieved a victory, through a gesture that meant more than a thousand words, and that had a subtlety and cynicism that exceeded that of the priests.

46. Jacobsen: Why focus on Rabbi Akiva and Shimon bar Yorjai?

Sorensen: Because Rabbi Akiva, was one of the most memorable Tzadikim, and since he had been the teacher of Shimon bar Yojai. And regarding the latter, due to the fact that I consider that he is the father of the Kabbalah, because by was capable to put in written form, what represents its most important text, since until then this was only known by oral tradition, and which in turn has allowed to perpetuate the knowledge and study of this wisdom, throughout the centuries.

47. Jacobsen: Have you been juxtaposing and working on the relations between (white) kabbalah and “black kabbalah”? Why did Madonna get into it?

Sorensen: No, since I think that white Kabbalah takes the wrong path. Why Madonna got into Kabbalah? I think that for the same reason why she eats Sushi.

48. Jacobsen: 14 years of familial, schoolmate, and educational authority beatings. No doubt, this would leave an indelible impression. What is the symptomatology for you?

Sorensen: I think that I have gone through several symptomatologies during my life, some of which still persist today. When I was a child and adolescent, I tended to somatize my anguishes and fears in different physical ailments, which in adulthood have mutated and have led me to be a hypochondriac. And as horizontal symptomatology, historically speaking, the fear of rejection and loneliness.

49. Jacobsen: With this “methodological reiteration” and “constant and indefinite process of trial and error tests” aimed at an ‘infinite hypothetical point,’ where does this leave us in comprehension of the full human being, i.e., of the human “soul”? 

Sorensen: In the letter h of the word human.

50. Jacobsen: Why was your biological father so disconnected?

Sorensen: I actually do not know. I think that with my mother there was a kind of folie de deux, since she suffers from the same syndrome. An example that demonstrates the aforementioned, was when once, taking advantage of the fact that my stepfather was travelling, she invited him to the house, but instead of being both alone, she profited off the opportunity for making a blind date with a friend of hers, who was a top model of the time.

51. Jacobsen: Why did they divorce?

Sorensen: Because apparently, she never got over his infidelity, and all the farce that was created around this story, for trying to save social appearances. According to my mother, she never spoke to her again, and unlike him, who never remarried or had a partner again, she literally untied herself, to make her ex-husband suffer in the same way, and that’s why she first married a footballer from the low leagues, and after a while she kept jumping from one partner to another.

52. Jacobsen: As a son of a divorced family and someone abused by a replacement male authority figure, did you ever fear this manifestation in later life from you – in either case?

Sorensen: Before marriage yes, after being married no. I think, it is necessary to distinguish between being afraid of something, and being aware of the evil of it.

53. Jacobsen: Of the “forming parts of a systemic structure,” what seems like the true substructure here?

Sorensen: The black box.

54. Jacobsen: With the “biological base or substratum,” does this seem to hint closer to the “systemic structure”?

Sorensen: The psychological functioning, is mediated by neuro-biology, and the outcome from that intersection, is what I will denominate as neuro-psycho-biological substrate or biological base. Therefore, and strictly speaking, there would be three systematic structures, of which I am going to name respectively the two formers as pure, and the last one as mixed.

55. Jacobsen: Why should there be a systemic structure?

Sorensen: Because in each of them, there are parts that form a whole, nevertheless that whole is not equivalent to the mere sum of its parts, but rather to the different interactions that the parts maintain with each other.

56. Jacobsen: What can the evolution of homo sapiens tell us about such a hypothetical systemic structure via its biological substratum?

Sorensen: What it indicates, is that it evolves through the biological substratum, and that this last, is what makes the systemic structure increasingly complex.

57. Jacobsen: Could this be a systemic theoretical framework for understanding while the system itself lacks a true integration to such an extent so as to remove the possibility of a systemic structure – akin to the idea some time ago of zero connect between the conscious and the unconscious?

Sorensen: I think that in this context, the idea of system goes beyond itself as such, since more than one are interacting with each other, therefore it is reductive and simplistic to think univocally and singularly about it. In consequence rather than believing in one systemic structure, I would say that multiple systems form what I will denominate as mega-structure, due to the fact that all of them simultaneously belong to the same main system, which is not equivalent to be sub-systems, since they have in common an identical operational or functional sense, but on the other hand, each of them has an independent structure with its own and different properties.

58. Jacobsen: Did you “burst”?

Sorensen: I do not think so. In this sense, since I believe that energy is a constant, and then that it cannot be eliminated, but only transformed and channelled through something, is that I decided ultimately not to exploit. What I actually did, was to intentionally accumulate all the energy, and afterwards to focus it on a predetermined objective as a target. In other words, what I managed to do, was to drive it by cathectizing its force through alternating forms, in order to use them chameleonically depending on each circumstance, and of what I was needing according to them.

59. Jacobsen: Why the difference in treatment of siblings, at root?

Sorensen: Because I believe that when my stepfather, saw the intelligence difference that he and my siblings had with me, he realized that it was equivalent to what he and my siblings have with gorillas. And perhaps, he surely imagined, that this has happened because my mother, unlike to what occurred when they were making my brothers, touched the stars of pleasure when she was making me with my biological father… With these last words, I am only repeating what she herself has said.

60. Jacobsen: If intelligence is carried via the mother, what do the siblings do now? How is this intelligence manifested?

Sorensen: They are vile puppets handled and dominated by my stepfather. It should not be forgotten, that although the intelligence is inherited from the mother, this is a hereditary polygenic characteristic, therefore there is no guarantee, that they inherit the same intelligence, and in fact statistically speaking, it is highly improbable, not to say it’s pretty impossible, to repeat more than once, the same event of having a son with immeasurable intelligence.

61. Jacobsen: Even with the high heritability of intelligence from the mother, and even with the abusive environment never escaped, what does this state about the sociocultural strictures on women in our societies?

Sorensen: That unfortunately almost all women are like paper, since they bear everything.

62. Jacobsen: What have been some of the uses of the cathectized energy?

Sorensen: Generally, it has been for exercising what I denominate the right of reply, which translates in knowing how to wait for a space, that I will name as timing, and then to use the hidden meanings through what is said, but is not articulately expressed within the language, that ultimately I will objectify by utilizing the mechanism of the joke and its effect, as an empirical parameter, in order to evaluate its effectiveness.

63. Jacobsen: Why do women “bear everything”?

Sorensen: Because they seek a master and lord, over whom they can reign.

64. Jacobsen: With the two pure substrates and the mixed substrate, what can estate about each substrate?

Sorensen: That respectively the neuro-biological substrate, has a purely material nature, in the anatomical and physiological sense, that the psychological base has a purely immaterial nature, that it could be viewed as psycho-spirituality, and that the neuro-psycho biological order, has a mixed nature, which I will denominate as transitional, since constantly and dynamically flows through a continuum, that goes from the extreme of pure psycho-spirituality, towards the other that is purely anatomical and physiological.

65. Jacobsen: Will this mega-structure be forever opaque given the subjective nature of experience and the use of subjective experience to gather some approximations of the material phenomena correlated to experiences?

Sorensen: I am not sure of that, because the fact that the subject points out his experience, as something to which he can attributes a transcendence, in the sense of not giving to it any spatiality, and of presuming it with a sort of life of its own, does not imply necessarily that objectively speaking, this could not be found in any part of the mega-structure, and even more, that probably the root of its origin could not be limited to this last. Therefore, it’s plausible to deduce that further behind its origin within the mega-structure, nothing else would exist regarding the subjective experience. I think that perhaps what occurs, is the opposite, since actually this would be the mega-structure that makes opaque the latest.

66. Jacobsen: Does mega-structure mean something like a complex in this orientation?

Sorensen: The mega-structure, is a systemic body, that apart from being subject to feedback mechanisms, integrates material and immaterial natures, as relative entities, since rather than integrating them into a mixture, where each one would maintain their intrinsic properties despite the whole they form, what it does, is to hybridize both through states, that are in permanent dynamism, and that are constantly changing.

67. Jacobsen: Why do the more intelligent tend to have fewer children while the highly intelligent and beyond trend towards no children whatsoever?

Sorensen: I think that there is an evolutionary force, that interprets intelligence to the extent that it becomes more extreme, as if it was a genetic mutation, and therefore nature operates on it, in the same way as it generally does with malformations. Consequently, natural selection, would also act in order to limit its survival, which could be seen as an expression of pettiness or envy. Nevertheless in this context, instead of doing this with the weakest, does so with the intention to exclude the excessively intelligent as strong individuals, since these just occur with the weakest and the most defective ones, would lastly break the balance within nature.

68. Jacobsen: Have you largely been separated, disenfranchised, and left apart, estranged, from parents and siblings in adult life? In either case, do you have any wishes regarding it?

Sorensen: I think that all of the above, has happened to me in different measures, and everything has been magnified in my adulthood, since despite the consideration that my siblings and stepfather, as well as my mother with her accommodating attitudes, towards luxuries and her comfort zone, think of themselves, that is a model of a Catholic family, who preaches Christian charity permanently, and attends mass daily, they have completely excluded and excised me from their family, due to my origins and for being a free lay thinker, to the point that literally, I do not have the right to enter to the house of my parents, not even for using the bathroom in case of need. All of the aforementioned, is a story that I am just describing, nevertheless, I think that to forget, first it’s necessary to remember, and since I still remember, and I wish to continue remembering for a long time, I’m not in a hurry to forget. Besides, neither I am willing to milk cows that are dead. Anyhow, the positive matter about this tale, is that even though apparently anything belongs to me, materially speaking, due to the reason that they intend by all means to disinherit me, I am on the other hand fortunate, because regarding love, I have a certainty that few can have.

69. Jacobsen: How is the hypochondriatism directed?

Sorensen: Making my wife dizzy with it several times per day, and visiting the doctor often with the phantom of my imaginary diseases.

70. Jacobsen: Why have the existential-humanistic theoretical models failed?

Sorensen: Because they have become a sort of religion.

71. Jacobsen: In turn, with the elephant on the chopping block, why has traditional religion failed?

Sorensen: Because they are all totemic cults, that have idealized the murdered father, by turning this figure into a deity to venerate.

72. Jacobsen: Following the previous question, why have atheism and humanism failed in the current form?

Sorensen: More than humanism, it is the existentialism that has failed, at the same time that on the other hand, atheism is not equivalent in this context to atheistic existentialism, since I think that what has failed, is rather the latest, and not atheism as such. What’s been occurring, especially in the case of the french existential-humanism or existentialism, is that they have straightly become a light or soft vitalism or nihilism, that’s unable to explain enough, the notion of none-ness or existential emptiness, which leaves in my opinion, the concept of existing-being locked in a tautological circle.

73. Jacobsen: If I remember right, with a 185+ (S.D. 15) on the WAIS-R, then this means a highest score known to me on the most consistently legitimate tests with the WAIS, SB, and RAPM as the top three. Of individuals “known to me” with two tips of the hat to Kirk Kirkpatrick with 185 (S.D. 15) on the SB and Katsioulis 180+ (S.D. 15) on the WAIS-R, you’re the one. We have covered this ground. The stars appear to have aligned that time. Now, this leads to some interesting neuro-biological, neuro-anatomical speculation, Einstein had more glial cells. Any speculation as to the differences one might find in the brain for you?

Sorensen: They will surely find many more neurons than the ones Langan & Co. have, and that the rest of the ones who are at the top of the loop have.

74. Jacobsen: How did this fear of rejection and loneliness play out in life, personal and professional?

Sorensen: When I have felt one of both, I have replaced the original feeling associated to it, with another that has opposite valence.

75. Jacobsen: With much defunct societal status, inflated IQs, and the like, in the high-IQ world, the falsehoods cannot last forever. When will the reckoning for high-IQ societies come down on them even more, as they have – given the graveyards and the personality controversies?

Sorensen: When it is found, that none of those gods of Olympus, of imaginary ego-inflating games, is capable of solving any important problem for humanity.

76. Jacobsen: Have others of high intelligence been demonized within the family? Who? Is it the same reasons over and over, or various reasons depending on context (or both)?

Sorensen: You, should respond yourself that dilemma. Next.

77. Jacobsen: What are common misconceptions of noetics?

Sorensen: The fact to believe that noetics is equivalent to the philosophy of science, that this last differs from epistemology, and to think that the latest would be an activity of science, which is supposed to be developed with respect to each of its particular fields of knowledge.

78. Jacobsen: What “logical principles”?

Sorensen: They would be respectively the principles of non-contradiction, identity, and excluded third party. Additionally would be the principle of sufficient reason, since although it is not logical, because it is ontological, it is nevertheless related to the previous ones. From my point of view, there is a fifth within them, that’s also ontological, and which I will denominate as the principle of necessary reason.

79. Jacobsen: What differentiates “validity” and “truth” in this context?

Sorensen: The fact that validity, refers to truth from the point of view of complex or logical discursive reasonings, while truth as such, has relation to the correspondence between the essence and existence of being.

80. Jacobsen: How would one confuse validity with truth?

Sorensen: To the extent that both can be part of a deductive affirmation, in the same or opposite senses, since they can be invalid and false, valid and true, invalid and true or valid and false.

81. Jacobsen: With noetics as gnoseology, what are its unifying bases, premises in its field of inquiry?

Sorensen: The concepts of logos apophantikos in relation to the ones of essence, existence, and being.

82. Jacobsen: As a critical while friendly inquiry, how does this add to the discussion now?

Sorensen: By adding the rest of the discussion, from the beginning and from the end, so that this looks like a sort of ham in the sandwich.

83. Jacobsen: How could this be misused or abused as a system of inquiry via faith-based traditions or through purely empiric traditions?

Sorensen: I think that by taking, what I consider to be the fundamental noetic concepts, as if they were sort of rocks, which would mean to interpret them unequivocally, as if they were pieces of reality, and without recognizing that their value is precisely the opposite, since they never reach to fully squeeze the reality, because noesis as an act of perceiving or intellectually conceiving the thing, would necessarily be imperfect, due to the fact that a part of the thing itself, is going to always be hidden or veiled in terms of gnosis.

84. Jacobsen: Who are others who pioneered this field?

Sorensen: Unless you consider that I pioneered this field, there can’t be others, since yet I have not named anyone.

85. Jacobsen: Who are the current leaders in this field?

Sorensen: There are no who, since nobody is.

86. Jacobsen: Who are frauds proposing to be part of this field?

Sorensen: Scientists, who intend to do epistemology of their own sciences.

87. Jacobsen: In this reality of the opacity of apprehension of the totality of the real, why are the search for, attempt to define, and efforts to encapsulate ultimate truth, penultimate truth, absolute truth, utter truth, undivided truth, perfect or pure truth, or non-relative or non-variable truth, or whatever other name one wants to use to grasp at the same idea of Truth, simply futile for thousands of years in the past to the present, even now, and forever into the future?

Sorensen: Fortunately this attempt is useless, since otherwise, the advance of knowledge would have already been stopped. The only thing that identifies with the truth, in terms of an absolute, is a nirvanal state, that actually would be identical to death, due to the fact that as such, is the only moment, in which what there is, undeniably is a forceful response, which does not need any questioning or completion by something. For this reason, if the aforementioned wants to be seeing from an existential point of view, then death, is a blind point in where a state of perfect equilibrium which equals zero, and a state of vacuum totality coincide.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Independent Philosopher.

[2] Individual Publication Date: August 1, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine; Full Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020: https://in-sightjournal.com/insight-issues/.

Appendix II: Citation Style Listing

American Medical Association (AMA): Jacobsen S. An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine) [Online].August 2020; 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine.

American Psychological Association (APA, 6th Edition, 2010): Jacobsen, S.D. (2020, August 1). An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine)Retrieved from http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine.

Brazilian National Standards (ABNT): JACOBSEN, S. An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine). In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A, August. 2020. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine>.

Chicago/Turabian, Author-Date (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott. 2020. “An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A. http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine.

Chicago/Turabian, Humanities (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott “An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A (August 2020). http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine.

Harvard: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A. Available from: <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine>.

Harvard, Australian: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A., http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine.

Modern Language Association (MLA, 7th Edition, 2009): Scott D. Jacobsen. “An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 23.A (2020):August. 2020. Web. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine>.

Vancouver/ICMJE: Jacobsen S. An Interview with Christian Sorensen on Noetics or Gnoseology (Part Nine) [Internet]. (2020, August 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/sorensen-nine.

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