Bouquet #6: Eclectic Mind Food (Why Viral, Watercolors, Krishnamurti, Hitozukuri, Human Mind)

Feast on very insightful content - Why things go Viral, Japanese Watercolors, Krishnamurti's pathbreaking speech, Hitozukuri, Panasonic andJapan, Human Mind and the entomologist

Bouquet #6: Eclectic Mind Food (Why Viral, Watercolors, Krishnamurti, Hitozukuri, Human Mind)
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Indian masala burning incense stick with white smoke on wooden dark surface.
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“I cannot make speeches, Emma...If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me. I have blamed you, and lectured you, and you have borne it as no other woman in England would have borne it.” ― Jane Austen, Emma

1. Why do things go viral?

A podcaster, Shankar Vedantam, has been running a podcast called "Hidden Brain".  It shares information and very insightful discussions and programs on human behavior and social science research.  He had this idea of “the hidden brain.”  

This episode is called The Snowball Effect.  Shankar investigates why things go viral.  Very informative!  You can listen to it here.

The Snowball Effect Hidden Brain

But do visit the website for many other extremely interesting podcasts.

The Snowball Effect | Hidden Brain Media
Why do some companies become household names, while others flame out? How do certain memes go viral? And why do some social movements take off and spread,

2. Exquisite Japanese Watercolors

Serbian artist Endre Penovác paints Wild and domestic animals in Japanese watercolors.

Fubiz is one site which is a visual treat.  If you want some quick creative inspiration, head over there.  I have been following it for 4-5 years now.

The Beauty of The Unexpected
Under the expert hands of the Serbian artist Endre Penovác, the ink flows. Living its story naturally, it occupies the space on the paper. The painter comes th

3. Truth is a pathless land

J. Krishnamurti was groomed to be the next "World Teacher" (after Buddha and Jesus) by Theosophical Society.  He was to head the Order of the Star in the East.  On August 3, 1929, the opening day of the annual Star Camp in Ommen, Holland, Krishnamurti (then in his 20s) stood up and with one speech broke many hearts and also announced the arrival of a truly amazing spiritual intellect by dissolving the Order in front of 3000 members.

Truth, he said, was a pathless land and no one can take anyone there.

The Order that he was to lead, he dissolved as his first act.

The speech that he gave is one of the most exquisite in spiritual realm.  Worth reading and listening to.

| J. Krishnamurti

4. Hitozukuri - Making Jpaan by Making People

In 1960's the Japanese Prime Minister sensed a fundamental issue with people in his country.  The religiosity was lacking.  He equated basic morality with religion.  His ideas came from the Buddhist framework that pervades other spiritual groups.

For Ikeda, religion was a bare necessity akin to food or shelter. ‘Some say that Japan lacks sufficient housing, but I think what we really lack is religiosity,’ he remarked at an event in 1961. ‘Whether it is [praying to] the kami or the buddhas or the sun, whichever is fine,’ he said in another context. ‘Sincerely praying and reflecting – we’re going to make that kind of person.’ The prime minister was on record stating repeatedly that religion was indispensable for generating national prosperity. In short, Japanese workers did not just need technical skills. They needed a sense of vocation.

But it all started because of realization of sorts on part of Matsushita Kōnosuke, the founder of Panasonic.  When he visited the headquarters of religion Tenrikyō.  Material and religous (spiritual) pursuits had to go together.  And so, the work was to be ‘holy pursuit’ (sei naru jigyō).  He worked to inculcate the most important principle - to ‘make people before products’.  This became popular as the hitozukuri (make people) principle.

How Japanese educators used religion to ‘make’ ideal humans | Aeon Essays
Japan’s Cold War education policy used religion to ‘make’ the ideal humans needed by its nascent economy. Did it work?

5. Human Mind and an Entomologist

Charles Henry Turner was an amazing man.  He lived from February 3, 1867 to February 14, 1923, in times where blacks were discriminated and treated without much rights.

Without a proper laboratory, without access to research libraries and university facilities, he became the first human being to prove that insects can hear and distinguish pitch, and the first scientist to achieve Pavlovian conditioning in insects, training moths to beat their wings whenever they heard his whistle and concluding that “there is much evidence that the responses of moths to stimuli are expressions of emotion.”

Read his amazing story specifically his contribution to intelligence and emotion.

The Ants, the Bees, and the Blind Spots of the Human Mind: How Entomologist Charles Henry Turner Revolutionized Our Understanding of the Evolution of Intelligence and Emotion
“The handicaps under which Dr. Turner’s work was accomplished were many, and were modestly and bravely met.”

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