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Forum: Photographic Technique 08-05-2020, 05:32 PM  
Macro Are there any other microscope enthusiasts here?
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 29
Views: 1,178
With new (used) cameras in hand I'm back at it, and I've made something I'm hoping might spark more interest in this aspect of photography, so I'm adding it here.

I've found that I could quite easily make small videos of my stacks by batch resizing the intermediary images after I'm done with them. Then it's just a matter of loading the images to a stack in PS, dumping the layers to animation frames, with the final step being to export the video. Following is an example of my most ambitious stack yet, from a couple of nights ago. This is a mourning cloak butterfly's eye. The species has long been one of my favourites, so the chance to shoot them on this scale is a real win for me. I went all out, and it ended up being 1529 exposures deep. I sped this up to 60 fps for the video, so it takes less than a minute to play, but the actual shooting time was more than an hour.
















You Tube






Above, the finished shot, and below, a selection of others from this shoot. They're such beautiful butterflies.




This is one of the butterfly's knees, showing the joint. It's my favourite of the set, oddly enough.





These stacks range widely in depth, with a couple of them only using around 200 exposures, and a couple more around 800. They're all taken the same way with the same LED lighting.

Another fun thing that happened with the video aspect occurred to me while shooting a horse fly eye. These flies make great subjects because their eyes are huge with a kind of technicolor iridescence to them. It's the perfect time of year to collect them along roadsides and highways, as many get killed by cars. The stack looked so psychedelic while I was processing it that I dumped it to a brief video. Below that is the finished shot. It looks much nicer to me as a looping gif but I couldn't find a way to embed it in the thread, so here's the direct url. Trippy colours in this focus stack of a horse fly's eye.
















You Tube






I'm pleased to entertain any questions about process. I'm no expert but I sure am enjoying the process. This is a wonderful niche of photography, the barrier for entry is lower than one would expect (my microscope was a whopping $80 CAD), and it's a great way to pass some hours at a time. :)
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 07-27-2020, 09:06 AM  
Thematic Forest-walks_Lichen-Fungi-Moss-dead-leaves
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 2,007
Views: 115,538
They're lovely, thank you! I'll share more here soon, I'm too busy today.
Forum: General Talk 07-24-2020, 10:46 AM  
I hate Paypal... seriously I do.
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 47
Views: 2,724
I concur. EMTs are my favourite way to do business online. It's too bad they're Canada only. You'd think they could connect the networks easily enough.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-24-2020, 10:42 AM  
My K-r finally died, and I'm trying to figure out the cause of death
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 31
Views: 1,426
How odd, they seem to have every Pentax camera listed except the K-r. I was going to add mine.

Thanks both, interesting stuff.
Forum: General Talk 07-23-2020, 12:55 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
Mark, I have been trying to discuss the ideas. You're making it about me again. My state of mind. That's the basis for ad hominem arguments. We can't discuss the ideas if you keep making it about how I present them.

If you want to lock or bin this topic that's entirely your prerogative. You don't need to keep threatening me with it.

If I see further constructive replies I'll happily discuss this stuff with anybody who doesn't get belligerent about it. I accept PMs about this stuff. Otherwise, I think I'll leave it off here because it's clear the post isn't being accepted. I appreciate your feedback and initial interest.

Edit to add: I also want to make it clear to everybody who has read this that my primary motivation here is due to the way I have persistently felt so much better recently. How much I have been growing. The conviction borne of that makes me want to help others by sharing what I think I know. When people respond and ask me questions, I learn from them. That's all there is to it.

And Mark, you blew the teaching mention way out of proportion. If I share an idea with a person, and they remember it, and it in any small way affects them, what have I done? We should be teaching each other a whole lot more, not slamming people for trying.
Forum: General Talk 07-22-2020, 09:32 PM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
I really appreciate this reply. It's thoughtful and contains some very good ideas. I hope I'm taking sufficient time with myself to address it as best I can.

Part of the problem is indeed the breadth of the issue. We suffer many conditions, and we try our best to categorize them, but there are real problems with how we look at mental health. There is nothing wrong with any person expressing their own interpretations.

You bring up the subject of medications, and somebody else did earlier, but I dodged it. I will say firmly I will not discuss the use of medications with people here. It is not my place, and I am not a doctor. I will not interfere with any person's interactions with their doctors. I won't offer opinions on any other person's use of meds. I do not use them. I have never used them, and perhaps I suffered more, but I believe they could have affected me in ways that may have prevented me from finally solving many of my problems. That's all I will say about meds, and I'd ask everybody here please do not ask me more about this. If you have concerns about meds, ask a doctor.

We are all capable of considering new ideas and information whether we're on meds or not if we're capable of maintaining the composure to use forums like this. There is no prohibition in psychiatry on open discussion between people.

I think what I'm reacting to here, the bit of defensiveness I see in my words, is because there is no reason to protest my ideas with anything but clear factual corrections. There is no basis and no person has standing to argue their arbitrary view in competition with mine, because that's not what this dialogue is about. If they don't apply to you, if they don't resonate with you, they're not for you right now, and that's as far as it goes. The only reason for a person to feel a desire to argue against ideas like this is if they're insecure in what they believe, and that's a strong indicator of denial we can leverage to become more self honest if we choose to recognize it.

I have no illusions about changing the world or anything grandiose like that. What I have are some coping techniques that apply to what I'm currently, informally calling "self selected mental illness", and all of the feelings we endure that don't quite rise to that level. We experience a great deal of intolerable feelings (beyond depression) that are simply not classified as clinical conditions. They make our lives harder and less fulfilling. They impede our ambitions and deteriorate our quality of life.

I'm trying to find ways to articulate what I've learned so that people who want to can ask me questions about how they might apply this to themselves. It's they who are the target audience here. I would love to be able to help all people, but that's beyond my capacity. I can offer ideas that helped me. It's a waste of time for us to argue about them because if a person is already arguing against, rather than asking questions, their intent isn't to learn. If they really knew better, why would they be upset? We get upset when we refuse to accept things.

Working to acceptance is a long and difficult process. I'm trying to find the flashpoint, some arrangement of words that might inspire in others what I've compelled myself to explore. I don't care about any person's protests of why they think these are not good ideas, because I accept those opinions only matter to them. If everybody who disagreed with me showed me the same respect, they wouldn't be arguing. This is an example of the falsity of our expectations of each other, and how we can end up blaming each other for our own false expectations.

There's no reason for any person to be mad or upset by my post above. There is no honest reason for it to be as controversial as it has been. Those are feelings we cause ourselves. I'm trying to teach the act of taking responsibility for our feelings.

I'm not perfect and I'm not immune to my feelings. I think and feel like any person, and I have struggled hard. I've learned when I feel a strong emotional reaction starting to question it. I ask myself "Self, where is this feeling really coming from? Is it honest?" and if I can't answer that the feeling is already dissipating. It's not a trick, it's a simple technique, and to work it requires building a little trust with yourself.

I am also out of my depth, because as far as I know nobody has taken precisely this approach. Certainly nobody I've read. I'm searching for that on an ongoing basis, too. So I'm winging it here, people. Have a little sympathy for that which you'd more comfortably perceive as a devil, because those feelings are the problem. Not my words.



Some good stuff here, Mark. This is the kind of stuff to which I can add something. Feelings are just feelings, as you say, but it's not a question of reality. Feelings are real. All feelings that we actually experience are real. They're real cascades of chemical reactions in our brains, so they only matter in the space between our ears. Just like most of our opinions. Making it a question of reality leads to the all too common tactic of trying to repress feelings, and this is antithetical to what I'm suggesting. We need to accept our feelings for what they are so that we can control them rather than trying to live in this paradoxical state of being afraid of our own brains. This is why acceptance of physics and all it entails is paramount to self honesty. Without this foundation of science it is impossible for us to resist our fears and other feelings. We have a primal need to understand. We need to work on our acceptance of our understanding.

So while you're very right that we each feel things a bit differently, and we each value our feelings a bit differently, we're all much the same. We're all trapped in the same system, with much the same demands and hardships. We all have the same kinds of feelings. We all suffer them. Accepting this, accepting the emotional realities of other people helps us to accept ourselves.

Dialogue is good. Dialogue is very necessary. I'm not trying to suggest these ideas are a substitute for a personal support net, but they could be an enhancement. I'm just not really good at this, yet. So let's all try to exhibit patience and see if we can't help ourselves a little more collectively. This stuff is hard for me, too.
Forum: General Talk 07-22-2020, 09:29 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
I used the word I intended and believe to be most accurate. Dishonesty is absolutely a choice, a series of choices, or a web if we're trying to visualize it. It's the sapient choice to reject something real, or to accept something false as true while knowing it to be false. We describe these two extremes as denial and delusion, respectively. All dishonesty is a choice. The only thing stopping us from stopping is the dishonest value we put on our feelings.

Itís really very simple. If you try identify all of the false and imaginary things you believe, and you accept what is real in each case you will become more self honest. As you become more self honest you will organically desire to control your feelings. As you learn to control your feelings you will become even more self honest by reflecting on what youíre learning. Youíll stop being the victim of your feelings. And then you donít have to deal with the intolerable feelings anymore.

That simplicity of phrasing sums up the most important thrust of the entire rant I used to start this, and I could not have honestly conceptualized this paragraph as this paragraph without the three years of work on myself I did to reach each of the realizations I shared above. I am saying without a shred of doubt in my mind that this works, and what is the harm in honestly considering ideas? What idea is so abhorrent we should cower from its honest consideration? None, because we cower due to our feelings, and our feelings are drugs we give ourselves. We create this self validation mechanism, the confirmation bias, and we run with it until we die. We do not have to be victim to our own intolerable feelings in the absence of an underlying pathology.

As I said before, the mental illnesses that these ideas address are those we select ourselves. They start when we react badly to aspects of our selves, our environment, or our circumstance (or our lot in life, our random placement in the socioeconomic horror we've constructed). We think "I can't accept this" or worse "I won't accept this" and then we find some combination of false beliefs that enable reassuring feelings reliably. Even if the reassurance is in the misery of depression.

We can think our way out of any box we think ourselves into. We need honest inputs to get honest outputs. Life really is about how much we can honestly accept.
Forum: General Talk 07-22-2020, 08:46 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
While I realize this is an off-topic forum this thread is intended to discuss the ideas presented. I'm hoping to generate some discussion or dialogue.

It's not a place for people to discuss depression randomly while ignoring the content of the thread. The positive effects these ideas have had on me have about as much to do with depression as they do with photography, which is to say some, but this thread is not specifically about depression, and reading the original post should make that quite clear. Our root problem as people is a result of dishonesty. Improperly valuing and controlling our feelings, including feelings of depression is how we facilitate dishonesty, which is how we end up in depression. This is the vicious circle of depression, but it's not the only vicious circle of feelings we deal with. We could as easily discuss situational anxiety, or any of a number of other conditions that hinge upon our refusals to honestly accept aspects of our selves, our circumstances, and our environments. In each case we are prone to becoming addicted to the pattern of behaviour and feelings involved, turning it into a vicious circle of deteriorating mental health by enabling our dishonest beliefs.

I'd be pleased to entertain further discussion that's on topic.
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 07-22-2020, 08:28 AM  
Thematic Forest-walks_Lichen-Fungi-Moss-dead-leaves
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 2,007
Views: 115,538
What am I going to do with all these slime moulds and scrambled eggs? (to the ending theme of Frasier) :lol:

Awesome about the ID, I thought it looked like one but I've never actually seen one. If you love slime moulds you should check out the collective.

The wintergreen is pretty, I remember it from when I was a kid. Please post some Indian pipes! I haven't seen one in years.







Forum: General Talk 07-22-2020, 03:18 AM  
I hate Paypal... seriously I do.
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 47
Views: 2,724
My first negative experience with PayPal was when I was just starting out with freelance web work. I'd been working for a rather dubious client over a period of about two months. He developed issues paying, so I stopped the work. He filed chargebacks for every payment he had already made for work completed, like four of them. PayPal ruled entirely in my favour, but they still stole from me $30 per disputed payment with no recourse. Why didn't they take it from him is my question.

I have a funds transfer in progress from my bank to PayPal right now to cover a replacement camera. It says it takes 3-5 days and it usually does. It's taking 10 days. This has been a problem with PayPal in Canada for years, and I don't see any excuse for it. Why should it take any longer to send money from my bank to PayPal than it would to send an EMT from my bank to PayPal? Why don't they switch to EMTs for adding funds? That would be instant. Idiots.
Forum: General Talk 07-22-2020, 03:07 AM  
Windows 7/Windows 10
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 53
Views: 1,783
I'll be the happy dissenter and say I'd go back to Linux before using Windows 10. I don't like the privacy problems. I don't like the loss of control over device drivers. I don't like Microsoft, either. It's just familiar.

Windows 7 can be hardened a bit. It's a gamble like using any WIndows 7 computer these days, but it's a valid option. The problematic updates that backported the privacy problems of Windows 10 can be removed. There are tutorials around on how to do this complete with the lists of updates to remove and explanations why. Then you gut Windows Update so it can't mess anything up. What you're left with is a static installation of Windows 7 that doesn't suffer the privacy problems of 10. Whether it can or will be exploited is a risk anybody doing this is willingly taking. The risk is very low for any individual person per year.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-22-2020, 02:54 AM  
My K-r finally died, and I'm trying to figure out the cause of death
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 31
Views: 1,426
I'm committed to the Pentax system, I absolutely love it so I won't be selling any parts. I watched a video of K-r disassembly. I could get it apart alright. I'm a little concerned about getting it back together. It's probably something I just need to do and not worry about it.

I think my immediate needs have been surpassed already. I have a deal pending with somebody, and then another person has generously offered to contribute a body so I should be in good shape once it all goes through.

When I tear down my K-r I plan to either take pics or video, so I'll post the solenoids it has here and give you a heads up, but it may be some time. I'll wait for my replacement so I can record the process without resorting to a potato.

Thank you for the detailed information!
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 07-21-2020, 08:07 PM  
Thematic Forest-walks_Lichen-Fungi-Moss-dead-leaves
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 2,007
Views: 115,538
I could be wrong, but I think that's a slime mould! Lucky!




This fungus grew backwards and impacted its stump. Either that or there's a sloppy dev in the simulation we inhabit.



Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 07-21-2020, 07:52 PM  
Thematic Post your lovely lichens!
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 5
Views: 521
Yours are beautiful too! The second one is breathtaking. Here are a few more from last year.







This one has been partially eaten by a small slug or snail. They consume to outer fungal layer leaving the inner algal layers exposed.



I don't know what this thing is. I don't know what kind of life it is. Fungi? Some kind of micro-saprophytic plant? It's growing among the lichens on a tree trunk. I'll be looking for more this season, anytime now.



Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-21-2020, 07:39 PM  
My K-r finally died, and I'm trying to figure out the cause of death
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 31
Views: 1,426
I think this is very good advice, thank you. I'll read up on all of it.

I think what happened with my K-r may be that a gear or belt broke in the mechanism that raises the mirror. I was fiddling with it last night and when the motor does its thing it seems like it can't raise the mirror, so perhaps I was off base blaming the shutter.

I'll probably take it apart, and while I know there's no rational reason to wait, I'd just feel better about waiting until I have a replacement in hand. If nothing else I could photograph or video the process so I have breadcrumbs to follow when reassembling it.

Thanks again, I really appreciate the detailed suggestions.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-21-2020, 05:32 PM  
My K-r finally died, and I'm trying to figure out the cause of death
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 31
Views: 1,426
The old acquaintance dropped out of sight again, but that's alright because I had talked myself into overpaying for it anyway based on my unrealistic impressions. He bought that camera a year or two after I got mine in the hope we'd share a hobby, and I don't think he ever put 1000 clicks on it. It's too bad, but I guess it's not for everybody.

Somebody on the forum here has made me a very generous offer to help, so I think I have my immediate problem resolved. I really appreciate the candid opinions on prices.

I'll have to see how things go in the world between now and then, but perhaps by next spring I'll have saved enough for a more modern model with an electronic shutter. That should solve my ongoing problem of burning through so many actuations.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-21-2020, 10:37 AM  
Macro Are there any other microscope enthusiasts here?
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 29
Views: 1,178
This is the piece I needed. Thank you so much, that's so well explained. I understood a little about polarizers but not much, clearly. When I said "straightened" I did know that it was only permitting light through on the correct axis. I expressed it lazily. I'm in zombie mode with my insomnia.
Forum: General Talk 07-21-2020, 10:13 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
I might be a bit terse in tone due to my insomnia, and if I am, I apologize. I'm right at the end of my day/night/day. I think there are some replies I still haven't addressed, too, and I'll have to come back to those later.


I've noticed in the past that threads about this kind of subject demand a particular attention to clarity. If my post lacks clarity about this, please point out to me how you got here so I can articulate it more effectively. In any case, I'm only suggesting art as one component of improving health. It's useless without the analysis and reflection. I bought my camera in 2011 and used it often, loving every minute of it until I had to face other things. I didn't have my breakthrough on this stuff until 3 years ago.

The depression I suffered was clinical, and at times it was considered morbid. I have diagnosed PTSD from multiple traumas, and I had an abusive childhood unrelated to the traumas that left me with a lot to work out. I was clinically depressed for 33 years, from 11 to 44. Following that I realized I could beat it into remission about a year ago, and as of this spring it's all but gone. I still need to expend effort to keep it that way, but the process is still working and I'm still progressing within it. I don't know where it goes because my experiences with this are direct. What I'm saying here is the current state of it, but it's not static in anything but factual detail.

The people I think my ideas can help most are likely to have acquired depression from circumstance, environment, and so forth, or other conditions like anxiety and dread. Narcissism hinges on dishonesty, as another example. I haven't made an itemized list of every condition and whether I think it qualifies. I am not trying to speak to any mental health issue with a known pathology underlying it. I'm focused on the mental illnesses we cause ourselves due to poorly accepting our environment and our selves. It goes way beyond depression. There are many forms of mental illness that appear to me to hinge primarily on self honesty. It's an ongoing exploration and I'm not insisting I'm 100% correct, or even correct. What I can attest to is my own experiences, and I took notes and wrote throughout.

What any person does with these ideas is fair game. I don't feel possessive. It's my hope that perhaps people with more education and background than me will consider them as honestly as they can, because I hope other people further it in their own ways. I also think there are a lot of people with conditions not dissimilar in severity to mine who could directly benefit by considering these ideas.

Lastly, for now, I don't think a person needs to be clinically mentally ill to benefit from these ideas. Self honesty is humanity's greatest failing. We all live within an inherently dishonest system that demands we participate in kind. The system exists because we've all been addicted to our feelings for far too long. We don't even escape childhood without learning the "advantages" of dishonesty. Scale it up by 8 billion people in various states of denial and delusion. Most of us should be considered "functionally mentally ill" to mean mentally ill due to the effects of uncontrolled feelings, but not in a way or severity that impedes the expectations of society sufficiently to warrant exclusion from normal activities. It's a universal problem. It's why we're facing extinction.

And we are facing extinction. I'm not interested in debating it here, I don't believe there's a debate to be had. Just read up on RCP 8.5 and then mentally add the increasing scope of the permafrost crisis. Our climate crisis is bearing down on us, applying more pressures to our societies every year, making self honesty even less appealing to us from the perspectives we widely hold. These ideas are as much my personal protest against humanity as they are a means of perhaps helping some of us to deal with our last years of anything approaching normalcy. In hopeless situations, and in the absence of acceptance, people turn very ugly toward one another. We're watching it happen on national scales already.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-21-2020, 07:18 AM  
Macro Are there any other microscope enthusiasts here?
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 29
Views: 1,178
I have not but I am very thankful for the suggestion. I will try that, and I'll research it more, too. Interesting idea!

Would it help in the same way or produce a different effect? I'm trying to visualize it, and the polarizer on the light would "straighten" the light hitting the subject and stage, but from there it would scatter. I'm not sure how this would look in the picture but you've piqued my curiousity!
Forum: General Talk 07-21-2020, 05:45 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
I got about halfway through this. It's very difficult for me to pursue somebody's take on an idea after I've identified a false premise in their reasoning. Take this, for example:



The answer they wanted was #4, but this is dishonest. We do understand some mental illnesses quite well. But let's back up.

1. Is not factual because we've yet to identify the mechanisms by which all mental illnesses occur.

2. is not factual within the context because it doesn't even address the scope of the question.

3. is not factual because "chemical imbalance" is too vague. Every adverse biological condition we suffer could be called a chemical imbalance. Being thirsty or hungry is a chemical imbalance. All mental illnesses are the result of chemical imbalances if they have any biological process behind them, at all. It reduces the term to meaninglessness. It also conflates the chemical imbalances caused by either unknown or genetic or chemical causes with those we self select by abusing our feelings. Acquired depression and schizophrenia have little in common, and to call both chemical imbalances takes away from the utility of the term in dealing with the chemical imbalances we can actually affect.

4. While technically factual this is also a result of denial. We refuse to consider many aspects of ourselves when defining mental illness. We carve out huge exceptions for common cultural and religious beliefs that fly in the face of all things real. It's no wonder we're all a mess. Our psychologists and psychiatrists are trying to deal with their own denial within the very uncomfortable context of trying to help other people with that which they themselves cannot resolve. There is a great deal of denial in medicine, and it's evidenced by every once accepted medical practice that we have since obsoleted. Each version of the DSM categorizes mental illness differently, and while this may reflect our increasing knowledge, it also all but proves we won't be right, this time.

We won't be right until we deal with our dishonesty, and to do that we must accept where it comes from.

---------- Post added 07-21-20 at 08:49 AM ----------



We could pick another online format. I'm happy to chat about this with anybody who isn't belligerent. Drop me a PM if you like and we can go from there.



I don't think it's my place to help you with this. I think it's something you'll need to work through yourself. There are things in this world that have been very difficult for us to properly attribute to physics and chemistry, but I've never seen anything that appears to defy it outright. I don't think in this thread is the place for it, either, but if you feel strongly you can drop me a PM and I will honestly listen.
Forum: General Talk 07-21-2020, 05:17 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
Kind of. That's a good question. The chemical imbalance theory of depression isn't as widely accepted as it was. The issue is more nuanced.

I think we create our chemical imbalances over time by adopting habits of thought and behaviour that reliably produce unhealthy feelings. We become addicted to these feelings. We start to think our lives can be no other way. And so it goes. We all have some idea of what depression feels like. It goes far beyond just depression. Intolerable feelings of all kinds can result in endogenous addiction. Pleasant feelings, too. It's not about the feeling, and this is why the chemical imbalance theory is incomplete. It's not about depression. It's about dishonesty with our feelings.

The endogenous drugs we use, the substances underlying our feelings are extremely addictive. Our recreational drugs mimic them in both structure and properties. Recreational drugs work because of this mimicry, and in how they bind with receptors in our brains that affect how we think and feel. Over time, overexposure to these substances creates the "chemical imbalance". It's part habit, part addiction, and part dishonesty.

Thank you for giving this thread a chance. I think people may surprise you.
Forum: General Talk 07-21-2020, 03:50 AM  
What music are you currently listening to?
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 7,030
Views: 532,461















You Tube




Something different, and special.
Forum: General Talk 07-21-2020, 03:32 AM  
An Hypothesis Regarding Human Nature and How I Beat Depression Organically
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 19
Views: 1,076
I think humanity's root problem is a maladaption to our own sapience that we express as dishonesty. We enable it through endogenous addiction to the chemicals underlying our feelings. We're all addicted to our feelings in various ways, and this is the reason we find it so bloody difficult to remain honest, even with our selves. We dread the endogenous drugs we find intolerable, we lust for those we enjoy, and we deliberately forget if we ever knew that we are each our own pusher.

We're great gobs of matter exerting a form of influence over itself not observable anywhere else in the known Universe. We suck in more matter as we live, and we relinquish it through a variety of mechanisms. No part of us is truly static. More than 90% of us by mass is comprised of simple Hydrogen, Oxygen, and Carbon. The rest is just seasoning. It's the rules of chemistry that dictate genetics must occur where suitable conditions exist, and those same rules of chemistry govern every other process ongoing within our bodies - including those that result in our thoughts and feelings. Feelings are drug reactions we dispense to ourselves.

As I started to really accept this stuff into my worldview I became much more aware of the denial people employ, and the denial I employ. I'm still pursuing aspects of it. If you take the time to think it through, I think you will find yourself agreeing that unnecessary human suffering all stems from our acts of dishonesty. Even issues as vast as our climate crisis can be described in this way. For generations we told ourselves and our children the lies that our individual actions don't matter, and that our collective ventures could never harm our biosphere. Vasily Legasov asked "What is the cost of lies?" in Chernobyl, and I would offer this by way of response: Extinction.

I believe we will continue our downward spiral through collapse and into extinction within a century. I think our environment will cease to support us within that span of time. I think we collectively and consciously chose it by valuing the drugs we're born with over reality. I think our cerebral cortexes are so huge not because of the requirements for sapience, but from a million years of steady drug abuse, gradually bloating the affected portions of the brain. This is how much we dislike accepting reality.

I use my photography to offset the discomfort of thinking and learning to accept these things, and to supplant my old addictions to depressive thoughts and behaviours with something creative, and honest. It's therapeutic for me while also being a tool of personal philosophy, as it changes the way I think while I'm shooting, searching for subjects, staging composition, whatever. I don't overly care about the product, not compared to how much I enjoy the process. I frequently start writing after dumping my memory card, to work on ideas I considered while taking pictures.

There is a process I’ve devised. It’s not terribly organized yet. The scope of these ideas just keeps growing within me, and it’s taking effort and resolve to progress. What I propose to “fix” us is to freely offer a collection of ideas designed to inspire the desire to pursue self honesty in a person. These ideas detail simple self analysis and reflection, visualization techniques, exercises in improving sense of scale, and some ideas of what we might do with our newfound acceptance. I think this stuff is outside the scope of a forum post. It may one day end up being a book, if I have sufficient time. I am happy to discuss it with people.

I’m going to wrap this up with a series of statements, tenets if you will of my personal philosophy. I want to be clear about one thing, first. I’m not starting a cult here, so don’t ask me to. If I could have anything I wanted, it would be to found a school of thought centered on this philosophy. I just want to share it for the scrutiny of others, to see if I’m on the right track, and perhaps to help people feel better organically.

If this post is accepted here, my intent is to add to it a post about how I reached these views and beliefs, and then another to try to streamline how one might devise a similar process for themselves. This process absolutely must be self selecting. A person cannot be influenced or coerced, persuaded or even bribed to accept these ideas. Self honesty springs from self actualization while helping to reinforce it. It takes the conscious choice to want to be more honest. That can’t be forced, but perhaps it can be encouraged and nurtured.

There is no idea so abhorrent we should cower from its honest consideration.

There is no real thing so awful we should dishonestly reject its existence.

Life is not primarily about what we can do, but what we can honestly accept. This is because everything real we refuse to accept we push beyond our own grasp.

When we refuse to accept real issues and events in the world we leave ourselves vulnerable to them.

When we refuse to accept ourselves we become mentally ill.

When we refuse to accept our children they never talk to us again. I didn’t make this mistake, I had no children, but it’s the one my mother would have to learn to live with if not for her abject denial.

Our feelings are our perception of the endogenous drugs we release into our blood as we think and experience stimuli. This means our feelings are entirely of our own creation, and this means if we’re not in sapient, conscious control of them, we are mentally ill.

Acceptance fosters self control. Acceptance reached honestly empowers our ability to use conscience to take control and to assist us in self actualizing. In acceptance we do not consult our feelings when making decisions, we consciously think with our conscience heeded. This is the key to both preventing and dissipating intolerable feelings.

The expectations we hold of other people are inherently false. This is because we lack the information necessary to understand each other, and also because we lack the self honesty to accept this fact. There is a way to be freer. It’s in accepting that holding expectations of others, myself, is utterly irrational. By accepting my own expectations to be irrational I was able to accept the irrationality of other people’s expectations. Now they don’t matter to me in the same way, they don’t impede or intrude on my thoughts and behaviour in the same way. It is a liberating realization.

Dishonesty results in a pathology of its own. Dishonesty is the mechanism by which we acquire and suffer many forms of mental illness where no other pathological causes are present. It's how we choose to become mentally ill, even if that's antithetical to our goals. This is because dishonesty necessitates we dissociate from that which we reject as unreal, or that untrue thing we accept as real. Dishonesty splits to denial and delusion, simplistically. One is the rejection of reality, and the other is acceptance of imaginary ideas as real. When a condition impairs a person's normal enjoyment of life, their normal participation in activities, and results in physical symptoms, it's a bona fide mental illness. We have approximately 8 billion people affected, now, to varying degrees, and this is half of why we refuse to address it. The other half is our endogenous addictions to our feelings which we use to undermine our conscience and engage in dishonesty.

To realize a thing in its most literal sense is to make a thing real. We cannot change the nature of our reality, but we can learn to more honestly accept the reality of real things to make them real to us. This is realization in context.

I hope this post is acceptable here. I'd like to think perhaps I'm giving a little something back for the help I've received with my photography from many of you. I've been away from here for a long time, and since I came back you've all been every bit as nice as when I left. This community is special, and I hope it continues to endure.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-21-2020, 02:03 AM  
Extension tubes and aperture control.
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 12
Views: 880
I'd strongly advise against using any kind of paint on surfaces that experience friction while mounting or dismounting lenses or tubes. If you paint your tube where it mates with the camera, you risk getting sticky paint dust inside your camera.

A little electrical tape to insulate, and a little aluminum foil to short contacts is how I did it when I needed to. Also, if your extension tubes are black anodized metal you can carefully sand the anodizing away where it makes contact with the camera contacts with some very fine grit silica sandpaper if you need to short the contacts. I'd suggest doing this outdoors, and scrupulously cleaning the tubes afterward so as not to introduce dust into your camera.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-21-2020, 12:49 AM  
Macro Are there any other microscope enthusiasts here?
Posted By Philoslothical
Replies: 29
Views: 1,178
Thanks! There are 768 exposures in that one.
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