Failed Attempts at Being You

I keep encountering this quote and keep liking it, so here it is:

"The world in which you were born is just one model of reality.

Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you; they are unique manifestations of the human spirit." --Wade Davis

I'm not sure I have much more to add, beyond some related queries to chew on:

  1. In what ways do I assume that my model of reality is everyone else's model of reality?
  2. When do I hold other people and other cultures to a standard of success that is defined by becoming or being me?
  3. What threatens me about people and cultures that have different goals and hopes than I do?
  4. How can my sense of spirit and life be nurtured by appreciating other (sometimes radically different) manifestations of spirit and life?

Book Review Shorts: Spycraft, Religion, and Conspiracy

Body in dumpsterQuick reviews of three books I've taken in lately:

  • Spycraft: The Secret History of the CIA's Spytechs, from Communism to al-Qaeda by Wallace, Melton and Schleshinger
    Fascinating, scary, and geeky. With great diagrams and photographs explaining how spy devices were constructed and worked, and with interesting stories about various successes and failures, all told from the perspective of the "techs" working behind the scenes to support operations. For someone interested in geopolitical history, technology, security issues and government secrecy, it was a must read and I enjoyed it thoroughly. Warning: the book minimizes any discussion of the ethical/moral/legal implications of the spycraft, and the human toll takes a backseat to the geekery.

Continue reading "Book Review Shorts: Spycraft, Religion, and Conspiracy"