RSA Animate – The Power of Networks

Many thanks to Jan Terje Bakler – @jtbakler – for posting this on Twitter

If you don’t have 10 minutes, you can start at 6.00, when Manuel Lima describes how “the internet has changed the paradigm of looking at social structures from a hierarchic point of view”. His conclusion: 

Even more than the idea of representing these complex systems is the need for a new way of thinking. And this new way of thinking is about this pluralistic way of thinking that everything is interconnected, everything is interdependent.

We are almost going back to the polymath, the Renaissance man mentality that it’s not just about being a specialist in one area, you need to know a little bit of everything. Or at least create outbound ties that you are able to learn from other disparate areas.

And I think this is the most beautiful aspect of knowledge that we can take into consideration by looking at this networked thinking. It’s more important even that we make that mental shift because I think there is immense benefit that can come from this network outlook of the world itself

Thoughts on a Papal Abdication

Added next day:

Link to: The New Pope Will Continue the War on Women and Gays. Accept It.
By Amanda Marcotte

Earlier today I reread Bertrand Russell’s lecture on … 
Why I Am Not A Christian

After that I read that the Pope is going to abdicate.

And I remember the years I lived in Rome with my family during the Second Vatican Council,  the optimism and hope that fueled delegates from India that we had close contact with. I remember their wish to make the Church accessible and relevant … to speak TO and WITH people instead of AT them.

And I remember some wonderful young priests I met in my later teens in Norway, their social awareness, their intelligent questioning of conventional  wisdom, and the way they supported critical thinking instead of demanding blind obedience. 

I remember one of them saying that the old farts in the Vatican were already undermining the work of the Council … that must have been around 1967.

They had to leave the priesthood. The young priests, not the old farts. There was no room for them in there. 

Rudi Kessel was one of them, and he has written a book (in Norwegian) called: 

“Hva skal vi med religion?”
“What is religion for?”

There’s a review (in Norwegian) here:

And this extremely positive review has the incongruous title:  

“Modig tenkning fra en frafallen prest”
“Brave thinking from a lapsed/apostate priest”

In the cognitive frames of many people, and not only Catholics, I am also lapsed, a lapsed Catholic, a fallen Catholic, even. And in my frame, Rudi Kessel and I are autonomous entities that made a conscious decision to not believe in the teachings of the Church we grew up in. And we have been extremely lucky to be born into a culture that does not physically persecute non-believing. 

I am not yet capable of anger at the harm that the Church has done to me and to others, the harm it is still doing to so many.

So I am going to borrow some anger from Tim Minchin.
Here he is, singing the Pope Song with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra: 

And here are the lyrics:

Fuck the motherfucker, and fuck you motherfucker
If you think that motherfucker is sacred (fucking motherfucker)
If you cover for another motherfucker who’s a kiddie fucker
Fuck you you’re no better then the mother fucking rapist
And if you don’t like this swearing that this motherfucker forced from me
And reckon it shows moral or intellectual paucity
Then fuck you motherfucker, this is language one employs
When one is fucking cross about fuckers fucking boys

I don’t give a fuck if calling the pope a motherfucker
Means you unthinkingly brand me an unthinking apostate, and
This has naught to do with other fucking godly motherfuckers
I’m not interested right now in fucking scriptural debate
There are other fucking songs and there are other fucking ways
I’ll be a religious apologist on other fucking days
And the fact remains that if you protect a single kiddie fucker
Then pope or prince or plumber you’re a fucking motherfucker

You see I don’t give a fuck what any other motherfucker
Believes about Jesus and his motherfucking mother
I’ve no problem with the spiritual beliefs of all these fuckers
While those beliefs don’t impact on the happiness of others
But if you build your church on claims of fucking moral authority
And with threats of hell impose it on others in society
Then you, you motherfuckers, can expect some fucking wrath
When it turn out you’ve been fucking us in our motherfucking asses

So fuck the motherfucker and fuck you motherfucker
If you’re still a motherfucking papist (fucking motherfucker)
If you covered for a single motherfucker who’s a kiddie fucker,
Fuck the motherfucker he’s as evil as the rapist
And if you look into your motherfucking heart and tell me true
If this motherfucking stupid fucking song offended you
With its filthy fucking language and its fucking disrespect
If it made you feel angry go ahead and write a letter

But if you find me more offensive than the fucking possibility
The pope protected priests when they were getting fucking fiddly
Then listen to me motherfucker, this here is a fact
You are just as morally misguided as that motherfucking
Power-hungry, self-aggrandised bigot in the stupid fucking hat

Fuck the motherfucker, Fuck the motherfucker
Fuck the motherfucker, he’s a fucking motherfucker

PS: Someone did complain, and it was investigated: