The only thing to persist forever is change. The most natural way of life is a changing one, it's not just one way, but then again this changes the whole meaning of a 'way.'

A pure soul must never grow attached to anything.
Orson Scott Card

The more I change, the more I stay myself. My simple plan for the future is to be in a position which I could not in my wildest dreams have imagined.

An aura of change has an orange colour. For a long time, orange has been my favourite colour. Do you really think this can be a pure coincidence?

Freedom of information, ideas and everything

Probably the worst mistaken assumption of the Western man is that he can own things. Information, by its nature, is free, but it can go further into material objects as well. It is a common observation that by sharing things the utility per capita is increased. The open source software movement is a prime example of the power of sharing. But it is the profound idea of the unity of everything that makes sharing completely natural.

The Internet, itself a product of free innovation, has showed that any attempt to restrict the freedom of information is hopelessly cumbersome, unnatural and will not work in the long run. Without free software, the Net would not exist as we know it. In fact, scientists think the commercialization has ruined the original idea of the net in information sharing, to such an extent that the original Net is being reborn as 'Internet ]['. But if it will be for scientists only, is there a contradiction here?

Finally, the most important thing to keep free is your mind. Manage that, and you can manage anything.

Learning: the hard way

During the time with Linux (since September 1999) I've learned more about computing than in ten years with M$ systems. I believe in self learning by trial and error. After thrashing my entire system a few times (and recovering ;) I've gained a deep insight into how things work.

At school you may be told how to do things correctly, not to do mistakes. But by mistakes and trying out everything you can learn much more.

Quasi-Freudian hedonism

Freud called it sex, I shall call it more generally pleasure. The single driving force in our lives. Whatever you think of this, it is a self-consistent system of explaining the deeds of man, certainly not the only one.

Evolution is based on doing what one likes. It is the obvious result of natural selection that those who disliked eating would starve. And if there's a gene for celibacy, it's unlikely to propagate very far down the generations.


Unity is. Many times I have experienced a powerful impression of "There is no me" while doing Metta Bhavana meditation, sensing the universe as a single organism.

Towards enlightenment

Since early childhood I have occasionally had brief visions of a different consciousness: a feeling of being detached from the rest of the universe, as if observing it from outside. Sometimes I have thought we are merely passengers in our bodies, but perhaps it would be better to think of passengers in the universe. Some day we may become pilots, but things will get really interesting once we discover alternative means of travel.

Style over Substance

Some people might say it's vanity, and I don't care. However, in my opinion one's style is a very practical way of expressing him/herself. I find it strange that often even the very controversial and creative people dress so damn traditionally. Why not let the world know how they view things? But then again, sometimes it's fun to wear a cool suit, if only for the contrast.

Why is it OK for a woman to wear trousers but men in skirts are often mistaken for faggots, transvestites or plain weirdos? I see a problem here, and it is not the only self-contradiction in the Western idea of fashion. Generally, how can the Western lifestyle be based on individuality while there are strict, unwritten codes for clothing?

"Who wouldn't want to wear a skirt? It's the most comfortable thing you could have on." -- Mark Holt.

We are all humans. Each of us has a living body at their disposal. For some it happens to be male, for others female. Humans wear clothes. Besides anatomical inevitabilities, there is no reasoning by which the body a person has should define what the person wears.

I first saw a kilt in December 1996 when visiting Cambridge for my entrance interview. At a pub there was a guy wearing a Royal Stewart kilt (the traditional red-dominated tartan), boots and a denim jacket. I thought that was totally cool, and since then I've been obsessed with getting a kilt.

I came out as a skirt wearer in May 2000 with a TopMan sarong. Got my first kilt a year after. I'm amazed how something so traditional can be so comfortable and cool (in both senses). I'm getting more and more biased towards non-bifurcated garments. (See also this rant and my fashion page.)

The paranormal, and the definition of physics

Until the 18th century, most people thought lightning was a supernatural phenomenon. Later, it was accepted into common physics.

Physics is the study of nature, that is, everything. Nothing is 'supernatural' - if it's real, it's a part of nature. The concept of nature has to be extended to accommodate things such as lightning, maybe even a soul. Telepathy, psychokinesia and ESP are currently known to be sufficiently real as to become 21st-century physics.

Besides, we already have a pretty spooky field of physics - quantum theories. (See also this rant.)

<moral>Do what you like.</moral>


In October 1999 I found out, through meeting some amazing people, that I'm not alone with this way of thinking. It is called Buddhism.

The end

Risto A. Paju