(Above: that’s me on September 14, 2019.) (Header: that’s a picture I took of City Creek in Salt Lake City, Utah. Flowing water, such as a stream, tends to represent life to me. In that way, it makes sense for a header for this blog, which consists of a lot of my impressions of life.)
My name is Mike Michelsen and I live in Utah in the U.S. I’ve studied a lot of psychology (especially psychoanalysis), history, and monasticism. These influence a lot of my thinking.
I have always loved to think about things and have often loved to tell them to people. But, over the years, I’ve found that most people never cared that much for them (or they don’t act like it). Typically, they went through one ear and out the other (see my article Thoughts on blog writing after 800 articles . . . questioning the value and meaning of ideas ). But, someone happened to say that I should put my thoughts in a blog. At the time, I didn’t know what a blog was and I eventually had to research it out. This eventually led me here. And so I put my thoughts here . . . well, just for fun really . . . and maybe someone might find something interesting. I have actually been writing my thoughts down for many years. I have been writing my thoughts down since the early 80’s. I did not begun to write them on the computer, though, til about 2007 and started to write them in this blog in 2010.
I have always sought thoughts that originate from “within me”. In other words, I try to avoid restating known ideas, things originating from other people, or common knowledge. The great joy of writing these thoughts have come from discovering what “I” think, not what society or someone else thinks. As a result, I have sought to be completely on my own, independent of any ‘formal education’ or common point of view. I try, always, to seek what my intuition tells me. In short, I let my intuition lead me.
My general stance is that I inquire for inquiring sake. In other words, I do not do it for some other ulterior motive (such as to make money or some sort of prestige, as at the University or as a profession). I also do not seek or profess to find any “ultimate truth” or great discovery. What I think, and write down, are only “as it appears to me” while trying to be as honest about it as I can. As a result, they have been primarily solitary endeavor, something I’ve done on my own, for my own sake, to satisfy my own curiosity. I have always felt, and still feel, that this is when any inquiry is the ‘purist’, the deepest, and the most profound.
In following my intuition I have found that there is a need to avoid the following of pre-established viewpoints, such as from ‘formal education’ and popular viewpoints. These only hampered me. I did go to the University for a year but that was enough for me and about as much as I could take (see my article Thoughts on the damaging effects of education, with remarks about describing the education process, undoing the damage, “personhood”, and over-education). I dropped out which is why I call myself a “University dropout” (which I take great pride in). While there I learned quick that the University was only for those interested in money-making jobs and some sort of prestige. You don’t go there to ‘learn’, so to speak (at least, I saw no real evidence of it). Once I left I found that I became very productive (see my article Some thoughts I had while walking through a University campus: the revulsion in becoming a “systemite” and the “war for humanness” ). This is because, not being at an education-related, or work-related environment, has made it so that I can think and do whatever I want in whatever way I want. In addition, I don’t have to do things to satisfy anyone else (such as a professor, the school system, the administration, other people, the establishment, etc.). This has allowed me to truly seek how things appear to me and to follow my intuition. What I found, over the years, is that these conditions have had amazing effects and giving me an incredible freedom that I have seen no one else ever display.
Sometimes my thoughts can be very insightful. Sometimes they’re not insightful. Sometimes they seem important. Sometimes they don’t seem important. Sometimes I just seem to be rambling. Sometimes I agree with what I wrote. Sometimes I’m not sure what to make of it. Sometimes I think what I wrote was nonsensical or stupid (which happens often). Sometimes I’ll write something, thinking it’s the greatest thing I ever wrote, and forget it a month later. In many ways, this blog is a ‘brainstorm of thought’, ranging from the believable to the not-so-believable.
What I write usually describes my mood and condition at that time. This, naturally, can change. As a result, I may say something that seems true one day and refute it as ridiculous the next. It’s an ongoing evolving process that never ends. Sometimes I’m amazed at what I had written years before. Sometimes it can make me ashamed or feel stupid. There are even times where I can’t even determine what I was trying to say! In short, then, nothing I write is written in stone but only describes how I feel at that time.
In general, I call things out as I see them. That is to say, I say how things appear to me at the time. I do not modify my statements to make them sound more ‘pleasing’ or ‘acceptable’. To me, that’s like lying. The very idea of things like “politically correct” is completely ridiculous and asinine to me. The thought of having to modify what I feel because someone might be “offended” or “upset” is one of the most absurd ideas I have ever heard in my life. Do not expect such absurdity from me! The intent here is to say what comes to me, being as honest to myself as I can, without distortion, without alteration.
I have never claimed to be “right” nor have I claimed that what I say is the “correct” version or the “only” version. One thing that I have learned is that thoughts are variable and change to circumstances (experience, age, stance, point of view, etc.). To say that ones thoughts are truly “correct” or that one has the “right” point of view seems arrogant to me.
I’ve always had difficulty explaining things to people. Sometimes, its almost impossible. Its something I have always struggled with. I find, though, that I can explain things easier when I write it down than in a conversation. When I write, for example, I have the luxury of having the time to find the right words. I also have the time to dwell on it and formulate better explanations. I’ve always said that I was “slow” this way. But, even then, I think that my difficulty in explaining comes out in writing as well. As a result, when I look at what I wrote, at a later date, I often find that I didn’t explain it adequately and I have to modify it. From observations like this I can see that much thinking and writing is nothing but a perpetual quest to explain things that can never be explained adequately. Its like a never-ending process that goes on and on. In this way, what I write in this blog is part of that never-ending process and quest to explain things.
I have a tendency to repeat myself oftentimes. Sometimes it’s because I forgot that I had already written something about it already. Other times its just because I thought about it in a different way. And, at other times, it happens to be related with something else I’m writing about. But, regardless of the situation, writing about the same thing, even only weeks apart, often reveals a different angle or point of view about it and are often worth putting down.
A lot of what I write are often notes to myself. I typically write as if writing to myself. As a result, I am really giving myself ‘advice’ and suggestions of what to do or how to do things or what things mean. It’s almost like I’m explaining things to myself. Because of this, I often use techniques to help me find things if I ever read them again. A common thing I do is using a lot of bold and italics to emphasize the important points in a paragraph. This way, I can scroll down the page and, just by reading the bold and italics, I know what the important points are without reading the whole article, almost like a synopsis. In addition, it helps me to determine where specifics subjects are located by making them easier to find. I also have this habit of giving ideas and concepts specific “names”. Often, these originate from the first thing that comes to my mind at the time. Interestingly, when I look at them later they often appear weird, or even funny, to me. I often wonder why I create these “names” as I seldom remember any of them . . . but it seems to help me when I write.
Much of my writing is like a free association. I write what comes to me, often without thinking beforehand what I’m going to say. By doing this I have found that they have become an avenue toward truths about myself and how I perceive the world. Often, these truths can be difficult and can bring out conflict. But that, to me, is what real writing is about. That’s what I like about it. As a result of this, it is part of the ongoing process of experiencing and living life.
Keep in mind that what I write consists of nothing but “passing thoughts”. By this, I mean that they are ‘for interest’ only and should not be taken too seriously. If a person finds something of interest, then great. If not, then its no big deal. My intention is only to express some of the thoughts that I have.
It is all . . . for what its worth.
This blog, and everything in it, consists of ideas and writing that I created and are my intellectual property and are copyrighted by Mike Michelsen.