Category Archives: Insigniteful

Lessons on Life and Meaning from an Artificial Intelligence

As an artist, I often ponder social and cultural norms and how they are changing around us. Lately, I have been increasingly fascinated with man’s relationship to technology. With this in mind, I’m in the early planning stages of several art projects that will cause us to examine the interface of technology and human existence. Virtual reality, autonomous robots, and attaining spiritual enlightenment via algorithms are some of themes to be explored.

With these art projects in mind, I decided to go straight to the source. I opened a dialog with an artificially intelligent being. What follows is the short text of that conversation.

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Economics of Creativity!

The overarching goal of the Töad Meädow Vision is to create an environment that provides an outlet for creative and expressive urges that were heretofore confined to the far reaches of your psyche.

In other words, we encourage you to peel back the layers of naysaying bullshit that has taken up residence in your brain….the cultural taboos or the little voice that says, “Don’t do that; other people won’t like it!” Or maybe it’s a practical voice that says, “Don’t waste your time on yadda yadda. No one will pay money for that.”

You can forget all those pressures and create…whatever.

At a recent Töad gathering, I ran into an acquaintance of mine that does professional dancing, and I endeavored to tell him why he should bring his chops to the Meädow.

Now I’ve been on his side of the fence in the past, and I knew damn well while talking to him that there’s a bevy of people that want him and his crew to bring their talent to their thing. But they don’t want to pay. It’s common for event promoters to say, “Come on out to my shit, and you’ll get exposure! No, I won’t pay you cash money, LEL, but you’ll get exposure.”

The currency that these mopes trade in is “exposure,” and, without exception, they’re full of shit. For the only people they will expose you to are other cheapskates that won’t pay for your talent, so at the end of the day, they do you no good, and yet they can still ride the coattails of your abilities and appear cool to their groupies.

So I was telling this dancing guy to come out to our next Celebration, but that we won’t be paying him, either. While explaining this, I was quite self-conscious and sought to distinguish the Way of the Töad from the rest of the assholes that cry “poverty” when the talent asks for money.

The difference is that at our Celebrations, each person is expected to offer up some unique personal gift to the others. The carrot we dangle before you is not “exposure,” but rather the currency of personal sharing, without judgment, nor the hope of financial reward.

This makes for a tough sell. After all, who the hell wants “personal sharing” and isn’t that so much BS as promising “exposure?”

Well, to be totally honest, fuck no! All I can say is “try it and you’ll see.” Because while other people may enjoy your dancing (for instance), you get to enjoy what others bring. Maybe someone invites you to join them for the game of flaming croquet that they built to share. Maybe you found some meaning in the effigy that we burned a bit earlier. Or maybe whatever. Creativity breeds creativity. Inspiration can strike anywhere. What we do is provide a venue for that creativity, and then we all feed off of it in a synergistic, orgiastic climax of…damn I’m drunk.

You get the idea.

So the point is to Bring it! If you’re feeling a bit tepid, then fuck it. Do something! Something as simple as cooking 3 pounds of bacon and offering it to people at 3:00 AM is a contribution. Today, a platter of bacon. Tomorrow…the world. Hail the Meädow!

If you haven’t already – use the link in the right sidebar to like Töad Meädow on Facebook right now. We also do the Instagram thing if that’s your thing. 

Cell Phone Addiction, not Belly Dancers, Will Ignite the Revolution

There is trouble afoot in the Meädow of the Töads. Firstly, there has been a counterrevolutionary coup led by a bourgeois ingrate, “King Töad!” Secondly, this “King Töad” has denigrated our fellow revolutionaries for having the temerity to passively view cultural appropriators masquerading as belly dancers. Well hashtag this, King Töad, you bourgeois bastard! The passive resistance is coming to end your White Russian style counterrevolution!

Friends and comrades: active participation is rubbish! Continue reading

Reality and Limitations

When considering my personal goals for our celebrations of reality, I’m caught considering the nature of what exactly it is that we are celebrating, as well as questioning the limitations I find myself getting stuck in.

When considering the limitations that present themselves, I find myself coming to a line, and wondering how far past that line I can push myself to go.

Pondering this line in the sand led me to consider the concept of duality within reality as a whole.

I first began thinking on the topic of ego and ego death, and the concept of the constant death and rebirth of the ego in my everyday life.

I often strive towards this state of “ego death,” and I find that the moments of pure truth and beauty that I witness, (which I feel are generally my main goals for these celebrations), mostly come from within that state of egoless objectivity.

But, we often live in the in-between. The ‘bardo’ state — bouncing between these moments, and the more subjective, ego enacted moments that allow us to: form thoughts, consider the future and work our way through social constructs.

In the essay Being and Nothingness, philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre writes on the topic of objectivity and subjectivity. He talks of how the mere possible presence of another person causes one to look at oneself as an object and see one’s world as it appears to the other.

He speaks of how this transformation is most clear “when one sees a mannequin that one confuses for a real person.”

While you believe it is a person, your world is transformed. During this time you can no longer have total subjectivity. The world is now the other person’s world, a foreign world that no longer comes from the self, but from the other. The other person is a “threat to the order and arrangement of your whole world…Your world is suddenly haunted by the Other’s values, over which you have no control.”

When you realize it is a mannequin, and is not subjective, the world seems to transfer back, and you’re again in the center of a universe.

Ken Wilber takes these concepts to the next level by studying and categorizing ideas in terms of their nature as a holon, a term deriving from the writings of Arthur Koestler.

He observed that it seems every entity and concept shares a dual role: being both an autonomous, self-reliant unit (whole entity) unto itself, and also a part of one (or more) other wholes.

Consider that a cell in an organism is both a whole as a cell and and at the same time a part of another whole – the organism.

Likewise a letter is a self-existing entity and simultaneously an integral part of a word, which then is part of a sentence, which is part of a paragraph, which is part of a page; and so on. Everything from quarks to matter to energy to ideas can be looked at in this way.

He then organizes how we as humans act as wholons; as parts, into quadrants:

Subjective Individual
Objective Individual
Subjective Collective
Objective Collective


According to Wilber, this means that multiple viewpoints are inherent in the nature of wholons and each of the four approaches has a valid perspective to offer.

Wilber states that it is important to consider all four perspectives since all are needed for real appreciation of a matter. To collapse them all or dismiss one of them is often a serious mistake.

Wilber then describes his AQAL (All Quadrants All Levels) theory which also considers:

Multiple lines of intelligence including: Cognitive, ethical, aesthetic, spiritual, kinesthetic, affective, musical, spatial, logical-mathematical, karmic, etc.

Levels or stages of development including: cognitive development, moral development, hierarchy of needs, psychosocial development, ego development etc.

States: This refers to those aspects of consciousness that are usually, without specific training, temporary, experiential, and often implicitly or unconsciously experienced. E.g. waking, dreaming, and sleeping.

States can also refer to exogenous or induced states, which are intentionally generated from exterior influences; such as psychedelics and other drugs, or situational induced states, such as hypnotherapy or guided imagery.

Types: For example, masculine/feminine.

Bringing this back around to the point at hand, it seems when wondering what we can personally do to contribute to these celebrations, that if we can pull inspiration from all dimensions of reality… we can accomplish almost anything.

Nebraska Thunderfuck XoXo

On Metaxis, Metamodernism and the evolution of the American Dream.

At the beginning of the 19th century, modern art broke from tradition and adherence to strict continuity and conventions. Art became “whatever you could get away with.”

Then, half way through the 20th century, the horrible existentialist nag of post modernism began to take hold. Postmodernist critics proclaimed that newness was exhausted and that everything new was just an insignificant variation of something that had already been investigated or created.

Postmodernists went on to claim that the next logical progression in the arts was to borrow, combine, refer to, imitate or comment on previous works of art. Therefore postmodern artists should no longer seek to create entirely new means of art, and their artwork should now become an investigation of what was already new.

Plato coined the term “metaxis” to refer to the state of existing and oscillating between two opposite poles. Examples include simultaneously being an individual and a member of a group, or being an observer and also a performer.

American Dream writer David Foster Wallace once spoke of “analysis parayalysis” – the inability to make a choice or decision while needing to make one in order not to perish.

This can be especially seen in our generation in North America. We experience the great modern abundance and consumption of resources in our daily life, but are postmodernistically aware of the brewing ecological crisis at hand.

We, thinking postmodernistically and buy locally grown organic vegetables, but we drive our modern gas-powered car an extra half mile to get them.

Metamodernism means continuously oscillating between the two “opposite poles” of modernism and postmodernism, and simultaneously surpassing both movements in search of new ground.

It is a structure of feeling that builds upon itself. It’s about participation between the observer and the artist and this participation feeds upon itself.

The Metamodernist Manifesto claims “Metamodernism shall be defined as the mercurial condition between irony and sincerity, naïvete and knowingness, relativism and truth, optimism and doubt, in pursuit of a plurality of disparate and elusive horizons. We must go forth and oscillate!”

Dutch professor Hans Boutellier speaks of a society that gradually takes the shape of an improvising jazz orchestra, in which individuals aim to provoke direction to complexity by establishing networks based around like-minded ideas or ideals – structures that sometimes lead to harmonious playing, but, as with all forms of improvisation, often lead to chaos and disharmony.

My hopes for these celebrations of reality is to achieve great oscillations of both chaos and harmonies, irony and sincerity, naivety and knowingness, relativism and truth, optimism and doubt, and modern and postmodern art, thereby creating a community in which we can play off of each others “jazzy structures.”

Let us go forth and oscillate!

The next natural evolution of consent culture

There’s nothing like a good protest to excite the senses and stir the loins. When the workers and the activists unite together against their 1% captialist bosses, the camaraderie is palpable. But now, on college campuses across the United States, the 1 percent is fighting back. Using the Trojan horse of feminism, they are taking away the romanticism of the protest, removing all the sexuality inherent in fighting the bourgeoisie, and continuing their mission to turn the working class into sexless drones. I am, of course, talking about the bourgeois plague of affirmative consent.

Friends and comrades: affirmative consent is rubbish. While claiming to try to prevent rape on our nation’s college campuses, the petty bourgeois elements in academia have usurped power unto themselves and enacted a series of ridiculous step-by-step regulations that will enslave our students’ body parts to adjunct sub-committees and turn over due process to a group of Chablis-sipping, Saab-driving economics professors and other la-di-da administrators. Often referred to as “yes means yes,” these academics have sought to make sexual contact as exciting as filling out a student loan application.

When Lenin stormed the Winter Palace and sought a celebratory poke with a fellow comrade-in-arms, he did not have to elicit “da” from the lowly soldier that gave him a tug job behind the bins, nor a “da” from the servant that he did revolutionary style on the old Tsar’s bed! Tovarish Lenin was wise enough that he didn’t need a passel of bourgeois do-gooders incessantly cackling “Nyet means nyet” to refine his sexual style. And “da means da” would have dampened the mood on that glorious day.

These days, when students are attending a rally, no longer can the buzz of hearing the words of Mumia Abu-Jamal stir them to call for his freedom and their fellow activists into their beds. Now on college campuses, a checklist must be ticked off by bank manager wannabes. Would Che Guevara and whatever man or woman or person of gender diverse experience he sought to liberate with his socialist thrusts of sexual delight have consented to some bourgeois bastard with a clipboard checking off each stage of Marxist merriment?

Affirmative consent’s signature failure is that it is capitalist in its orientation. In fact, it even places responsibility of sexual conduct on the individual! What sort of cis-scum nonsense is that? Comrades, in the progressive era in which we live, allowing the individual choice over their own means of sexual interaction is both dangerous and inherently bourgeois. That is why we must choose to replace affirmative consent with social consent – only your social circle, commune or family can decide whom you should have sex with.

Social consent is the only progressive choice. Affirmative consent merely prolongs the free market delusions that the sexually entitled carry. They do not realize that the market for sex has completely failed and that society must step in to correct this. Social consent allows anyone but yourself to make informed choices about sex. This approach allows corrective measures to take place so that side effects of the free market of sex are curtailed. Imagine if someone was assigned sexual intercourse with Elliott Roger. No bloody massacre then! There would be no genital-hoarding scum like Julien Blanc driving Elliott Roger to homicide. In the world of social consent, Elliott would have asked his peers if he could have sexual intercourse with a co-ed. Of course society would have said no to that weedy bourgeois low life defiling its best youth, but society could, as a corrective measure, assign him to the manager of a Burger King or perhaps a reality television star. While both are associated with insects infesting flesh, Elliott’s sex with either one would have sated his homicidal tendencies.

So come the glorious day of the revolution, social consent is how we will choose to distribute the sexual ecstasy of the victory of the working classes. Sex for the people and by the people! I welcome ways that we can put in place technology where at least three comrades consent to two other comrades having sex with each other. Please leave your comments below. Thoughts from the cisgender biased supporters of affirmative consent are not welcome.

Adrian Kimble is the Leonard Peltier Distinguished Professor of Sociology at California State University – Barstow. Ze’s views are those of the working class and not the university.

Why do we burn down beautiful things?

Everything is temporary. Eventually, entropy will turn the universe into a pile of goo. The state that your consciousness occupies right this fucking second has changed and is gone by the time you finish this sentence. The cute chicky-snack you met and fell in love with at the bar last night will never call you. The special moments you shared with her are gone.

So why do we spend so much time building intriguing and beautiful works of art, just to watch them be destroyed?

The destruction is a reminder. That amazing sculpture or whatever it is will soon be on fire. So while it exists, you better climb on it, smell it, look at it, take pictures of it, fuck it. Get the most you can out of it. Soak up the experience and artistry. Let it permeate your brain. Because it’s going to burn. You’ll miss your chance. Seize the day. Seize some art. Do some shit.

Or don’t.

You can make the decision not to climb and touch and experience. Use the knowledge of that decision to acknowledge your limitations. The world doesn’t wait for you. You must keep up with the world the best that you can. We all do.

Here today, ashes tomorrow.