Is 19 Too Old For Prom?

Chris Kluender wants to take his high school sweetheart Tiffany Gall to the prom. After all, they started dating a couple of years ago when she was a senior and the couple went to her prom.

But there's a teensy weensy problem now, when Chris wants to take her to his prom: at 19 years old, the school says she's too old to attend:

Tiffany currently attends St. Leo Universtiry with a major in healthcare administration. Chris also plans to attend St. Leo and is interested in sports management. They both feel their strong credentials, good grades and high morals should be enough to make an exception in this case.

As for the principal, Ray Bonti, he says rules are rules.

"If I have to make an exception for her, where does it stop? We know they are good people, but I can't have adults at a high school dance," said Bonti. "Parents trust me to take care of their kids. I can't have older adults there."

He went on to say, "We understand he is a great young man, and he can bring any one of the 2,100 other students to the prom."

Link | There's even a Facebook page to petition the school to let Chris bring his girlfriend

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Incidentally, MenOfTheInfinite philosopher Dan Rowden uploaded a clip addressing egotistical friendships and reality-avoidance strategies.
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Ironic! A co-worker of mine just praised me for my clarity and conciseness. He said "You speak clearly and definitively and you usually cover all the ways someone might misperceive you ahead of time."

I'm not saying he is right and you are wrong. I'm just saying its strange that you both criticized me in diametrically opposed ways. Its in the eye of the beholder perhaps.

Yes, people want reality to come to their level. I understand that, I can't bring reality to anyone's level. With risk of sounding nuttier than I already do, I would like to draw on Kabbalah for a traditional representation of what this is like. They insist that it is not reality who has to change, it is you who has to change and what should you change into? Reality! They call this "Equivelance of Form" where form refers to the modus operendi (mode of operation) of reality, which they proclaim to be love. Reality loves all, as the Sufi mystic Rumi said: "And still, after all this time, the Sun has never said to the Earth,
"You owe me."
Look what happens with love like that.
It lights up the sky."

Selfish love gets exactly what it deserves; heartache. All selfishness is rewarded with pain and suffering. But people don't see it, instead they externalize the cause and rally up some support against their perceived enemy.

I don't know if you are a fan of Rudyard Kipling, but his poem If is inspirational to me. Here it is in Typography:
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Ryan S,

I really wish you would stick to the topic without feeling the need to "enlighten" me with your convoluted philosophical musings. I feel I can't have a useful discussion with you if you intend on going off on such tangents. I see this is a habit of yours.

A piece of advice: If you wish to effectively get your point across, conciseness is key. Remember the medium by which you are communicating - a comment section of a blog post. This is not an effective or appropriate platform for such essays.

I apologise if this sounds patronising but know that I truly don't intend for it to be. You are clearly an intellegent person but if you want to really get your point across, you are going to have to work on your communication skills and learn to adapt your message to the medium and audience that you are communicating with. Otherwise you are truly wasting your time.
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Now, I also mentioned to you scientists and academic philosophers who are working on this same kind of theory. If you want to learn more about that approach, check-out Thomas Metzinger's The Ego Tunnel. Then, if you feel like getting into it deeper, pick up Metzinger's "Being No One". Being No One is a thorough functional analysis of conscious experience which takes a lot to wrap your head around. One said "The book wouldn't have been so short if it wasn't so long." It is meant for hardcore philosophy, Teh Ego Tunnel is more for layfolk.


No such thing as "I" or "self" exists in the world: nobody ever had or was a "I".

All that exists are phenomenal "I"s, as they appear in conscious experience.

The phenomenal "I", however, is not a thing but an ongoing process; it is the content of a "transparent self-model."

We are systems of ongoing process, we are not individuals, we only maintain a model of individuality. For some reason, these system fail to notice that their model of individuality is just a model, they mistake the model for the real.

This error is part of a broader misconception we have of mixing the representations of reality we have in our mind with reality itself. We regard the mental representation of an object as if it were the object itself.

The reason for this error is that the systems that map and represent for us the world and ourselves are "transparent" as the philosopher George Edward Moore used to call it. We do not see the mental processes that construct for us the representation of reality but see through them. This is the reason why whatever is represented to us is not grasped by us as a representation but as the reality itself.
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Okay, Jessss, this is a very elusive concept that I'm trying to share with you. In spiritual traditions it is claimed that people can spend a life-time in spiritual practices without ever becoming enlightened, so-to-speak, which just means they never understand what needs to be understood.

I want to stress that what I'm talking about here precludes all else. What I'm talking about maintains regardless of anything else, it is a requisite for the appearance or apparent existence of anything else.

What I'm talking about is essentially the formation of conscious experience - which necessarily comes before all scientific inquiry and all philosophical prose. It is the bedrock of all existence. There is an old Sufi saying; You can't hold running water in a bucket. The minute you put it in your bucket it stops running. Existence is the same way, if you try to encapsulate it in any system of thought or method of inquiry, you are going to come up short.

Instead what we need to do is reverse engineer existence. We need to begin with what is most incontrovertible and spiral out. All of this work has been done before us, and we merely need to follow the path laid by the great philosophers and prophets. But, we cannot get there quickly or easily, we need to understand beyond all doubt - everything.

We can talk about all kinds of things, but eventually we must realize that all "things" share a common criteria. A thing is demarcated, bounded, finite, limited. Any thing, whatever it is, even if it is just a passing thought, is bounded by what it is not. That which is not bounded, is not limited and extends for eternity. Such a thing does not exist, because if it did, there wouldn't be any-thing else in existence.

With that said, because all things are relative to what they are not, they are all causally bound to each other, thus the entirety of existence is boundless and interdependent. Existence therefor is not a thing, but all things are existent. Existence is a bottomless, limitless everything that cannot be encapsulated in any finite form. Thus, it is often said that existence has no name, or any name for it is misleading and inadequate.

The Tao that can be named is not the eternal Tao - The Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ - The Holy Bible, Exodus 3:14

“As air existing in space goes everywhere and is unlimited, so are all things in me.... I am the Vedic rite, I am the sacrifice, I am food, I am sacred formula, I am immortality, I am also death; also the latent cause and the manifest effect.” - The Baghavad Gita, Chapter XI

Human beings are things, finite in nature, and interdependent on the surrounding environment. Read God. The surrounding environment which we call "nature" in contemporary culture is the I AM THAT I AM, the infinite, immortal God. We do not see it that way because we are finite beings, we have to employ our reason and not our discriminating sensory apparti to discern this.

As we come to be as individual entities we also perceive the world as consisting of individual entities, not perceiving the continuity inherent in them. This separation of mind is said to cause us fear and desire. Now, there is a 'you' to protect, to be embarassed, to feel love and greed, to be envious and spiteful. And all of those emotions can be understood, best, within the context of egotistical individuation.

The desire to be loved is the desire to bring concretion to the self (ego). It is the to give fuel to the delusional notion that you exist independently. Free-Will is another such illusion of independence. Our whole lives are driven by the illusion of our own independence. We define and redefine ourselves in order to stand-out as definite things, as really existing independent things. If everyone is jumping off a bridge, I might not just to be different. This is why counterculture springs up in every generation. It's not "Innovation" it's egotism. We desperately want the approval of others, we want to fit into the herd. It's a strange antagonism, we want to be seen differently, whether feared or revered, but we also want to fit in somewhere, even if it's the villain. Otherwise we do not have an identity, nothing to identify with, no belonging to the tapestry of finite being.

All of this could be described by evolutionary theory and similar results would obtain. The main difference is that evolution sees things in terms of gene propogation which is a flacid tool for explaning a lot of human behavior. It can only explain selflessness, altruism with regards to alpha-male behaviors. But I know, for myself, the possibility of a completely selfless act. The trick is, I'm the only person who knows about it, nobody else knows about it except me, there is no praise or blame coming my way because nobody else even knows.

Take some money, a large sum, and donate it in someone else's name, and then, don't tell anybody. Resist the urge to make your good deed known, and feel the pain of having to give-up something without getting even praise in return. You'll begin to realize that doing things for the sake of others is not what humans are generally about. If we don't get a pat-on-the-back a hoo-rah, way to go buddy. We just don't do anything.

Love, in whatever form, high-school sweethearts, bed-buddies, life-long romantic partners, doesn't matter, it's all the same bag of tricks. In the final analysis nobody would ever get involved with anyone else if not for recognition of our own selves and our uniqueness. If I was not unique, then why would you love 'me' and not someone else? If we were all the same, love for some-one would be senseless. We want to be loved for who we are, just like everything else we do, it comes back to our selves and our relative and transient existence. We cling to life this way.
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