It is always time to write thoughts.
We visited the Ganghwa dolmens. There, the 53 ton slab upon its two uprights. Standing there since the bronze age. A mere 3,000 years. Younger, far, than the pyramids. Yet, it has seen a cycle of ages.
The island is now 300 square kilometres, but that’s after land reclamation works. Once, it was smaller. Before, in the ice ages, it was probably no island at all.
When the dolmen was set up, it must have been a great feat for that chief. Their domain, perhaps the whole island, perhaps half? That domain must have felt immense. To those far off islanders who hauled that rock, where did the world end? The mainland tribes? The other islands speckled down the fringe of the West Sea? Zhou, Shang, or some other empire?
They must have been convinced their way of life was best; that their tribe would live forever since they could build such an impressive monument to the ages.
All gone now, the polity that built that dolmen. Their language and faith, their convictions and their fears. Woven into a past inaccessible to us. Part of the tapestry, but invisible.
Through the Ages.
I played a six-hour board game called Through the Ages. I suppose the game might become a little shorter with familiarity. My eyes become like cardboard after so many hours staring at cards and tokens.
I got the iOS version to figure it out better and it’s quite nice. I think I have an understanding of why it grips me.
It does an interesting thing, for all its scope. Each individual decision the player makes is relatively small and simple. Do I invest one of these resources or five of those? The numbers are never over large. But the layers of those decisions, their consequences, and how the player faces constant tradeoffs and temptations, that is what reels me in.
Anyway, I uninstalled it after a couple of days. Don’t want to train my brain to such a temptation again.
I’ve chosen three habits to break, change, or replace this year. I’ve done this before, so I’m fairly confident I’ll succeed with at least one out of three, and that’s fine.
I wrote out the three habits. What triggers me to fall into each habit loop. What I get out of the habit.
Then I wrote down three habits with which I’m going to try and replace the dysfunctional ones. My goal is to satisfy the need each habit scratches in a more helpful way.
Finally, I wrote down a list of all the negative habits I’ve already broken over the years to motivate myself.
It’s good to have little projects like this.
The Best Way.
Once there was a very powerful kingdom. Its people were rich and satisfied.
“We are the best people and our way of life is the best,” they said to one another proudly.
When they saw a weak republic they told its people, “You are weak because you are a republic. We are strong because we are a kingdom. You should have a king, too.”
The people of the republic said, “No, thank you. We are weak because we are a small state, burdened with neighbours and history and …”
The people of the kingdom said, “You deny that what we say is true and good? You are evil! A king you must have.”
And the very powerful kingdom sent its soldiers and its diplomats and toppled the republic and picked an exile and made her king and said, “Now you are a kingdom too. Now you will live like us and become rich and satisfied and admit that ours is the best way.”
And the people of the very powerful kingdom congratulated themselves for making the world better and more like themselves.
And the weak republic became a weak client kingdom and its people did not become rich and satisfied.
Is there any cake better than a cheese cake?
No. There is not.
Low More Hey What.
I discovered the band Low thanks to the Spotify Mechanical Assistant Mind. It astonished me.
Bon an hic an neu, mi mund.