Saturday, December 1, 2007

The Root of Friendship

Friendship, the effect results from this cause: confident recognition of your morality in another individual. The root of friendship is therefore common values. This fundamental fact raises two prerequisites that must be met before friendship can occur:

Prerequisite #1: All parties must know their own values. This relates to volatility of friendship. Someone that does not understand their values is volatile because they are a moral blank slate that may discover a conflicting value at any time. Before this perquisite can be met, time and effort must be dedicated to knowing your values.

Knowing a standard of value is also required to meet this prerequisite. A standard of value makes conflicting values impossible and demands moral continuity. A Catholic advocating abortion is conflicted in their standard of value. A Catholic advocating tithing is not. A student taking recreational drugs is conflicted in their standard of value. A student studying for a test is not. A husband unfaithful to his wife is conflicted in his standard of value. A husband being a friend to his wife is not. Without a standard of value no values can be known. When values are not known, friendships that follow will be volitile.

Prerequisite #2: Identification of your values in another party. This relates to the degree of friendship. A friendship is strengthened over time by consistently identifying with the values of the other party. Consistent identification of one's values in another individual is the root of trust among friends. Trust is a measure of confidence in knowing another individual's morality - it is knowing their system of values.

Friendship is not the product of sacrifice - it is not friendship that is earned by the sacrifice of what you value to what you do not. Friendship is not the product of common interests when principal goals are different. Friendship is not the product of non-action - if common values are present, a friendship will only occur if the effort of discovery is applied. Friendship is, and only is confident recognition of your morality in another individual.

Personal Update

I am amazed how fast December came this year. I hardly remember what I did in November because I was so busy meeting an end of the month deadline at work ... by the way you need go buy something from using GoogleCheckout!

Even with the long hours at work I still have had some time to do some fun things. I read some very interesting research related to the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis by Kenneth Iverson. His paper was titled "Notation as a Tool of Thought" and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in the philosophical aspect of linguistics, computer languages, and mathematics.

I also made it through a good part of "Objectivist Epistemology" by Ayn Rand. Atheism not considered, I am able to relate to much of her ideas. I chose this book in particular because I believe it will help me understand my own religious beliefs (this will certainly be a future topic - once I fully understand it myself).

Rebecca and I also decided in November that we were going to convert some of our assets into gold. This decision was based on the declining value of the U.S. Dollar, the intrinsic value of gold, and other factors. We purchased pure gold coins to be stored in a bank deposit box close to home. If anyone is interested in purchasing through Monex please let me know as we get a referral incentive.

Last but not least, I have had the opportunity to start learning about the Spring Framework, which I am using for an application. This application will track the price of gold and other currency real-time and valuate our investment daily based on market prices. It will also send out notifications to us if configurable conditions are triggered. Features will be exposed as web services so it should be easy to tie in other functionality as time goes on. I expect to be completed within the next week or so, I will give an update then.