Moulton Lava

Moultonic Musings

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Location: New England, United States

Friday, July 08, 2011

The Handwriting on the Wall

The phrase, "handwriting on the wall," comes from an Old Testament story found in Chapter 5 of the Book of Daniel. The (Hebrew) words written on the wall were "Mene, Mene, Tekel, uParsin" which we may poetically translate as "Money, Money, Token and Portion."

Nowadays, the writing on the wall is mostly found on Facebook, where it is occasionally as cryptic and foreboding as the ominous example from the Book of Daniel.

If one were to update these puzzling words to reflect the Daily Zeitgeist, the writing on the wall might read, "Lulz, Lulz, Psychodrama, and Fractiousness."

I reckon that "lulz" needs no explanation, as there is no shortage of gleeful schadenfreude in the modern age.

The difficulty comes in weighing the dreadfulness of the psychodramatic mind games that underlie the dopamine-driven pursuit of lulz. Some people laugh it off or shrug it off, while others are totally creeped out and/or phreaked out.

And thus arises the fractiousness, as the audience divides into polar camps, depending on the level of arousal of their amygdala (the brain's full-time fear-processor).

I tend to side with the sentiments of FDR, who said, "The amygdala has nothing to process but fear itself."

Or something like that.

2 Comments:

Blogger Higs; said...

You've been weighed in the balance and found wanting.

What you want is anyone's guess, however.

Another possible translation of the infamous writing on the wall would be: You killed my father; prepare to die!

8:17 AM  
Blogger Moulton said...

What I want is an enlightened culture where we diagnose, remedy, and repair our shortcomings rather than seeking a convenient scapegoat upon whom to exact a measure of retribution or revenge.

9:52 AM  

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