Living in my time, not wearing a watch and doing things when I feel like it, seems to run against the self-control and personal interdependence that Norbert Elias, 1897-1990, called the civilizing process. He identified a dramatic reduction in homicides in England. The trend became the theme of Pinker’s tome ‘The Better Angels of Our Nature.’ He explained that youth rebellion worldwide is a counterculture against social time, when timeliness has become a personal battle, from A Clockwork Orange to the hippy movement.
In 2022 we have achieved historically low homicide rates worldwide, without the stress of obeying ‘Slessor’s little fidget wheels’ which would impose clock time. We can choose to have our cake of time freedom and eat it too, by allowing ourselves to flow timelessly, by optimal achievement, according to Mihaly’s theory of that psychological condition.
My novels ‘Time is Gold’ and ‘Turkeys Not Bees’ tell stories about high achievers who have let flow take over their time. Reviews: martinknox.com
Time Is Gold has a story of an endurance runner, Maxi who becomes a champion with psychology, biomechanics, neuroscience, zen and physics advice from her coaching team. Their dualist philosophies equip her to expand the limits of her endurance. Her mind and her body improve by traditional didactic coaching.
In Turkeys Not Bees, Megan becomes a world champion pole vaulter, by exploring her technique with phenomenology and self-coaching. With the help of her physicist boyfriend, she develops a kinaesthetic numerical model that she uses to improve, focussing on her lived experience without a coach.
These stories by Martin Knox apply academic theories to top athletes’ training and performances in elite competition, in romantic settings. Both women learn to train and compete in flow. Maxi relies on advice from experts whereas Megan analyses her performance herself.
Both are available on Amazon. Reviews: martinknox.com
Individualism began with the philosophy of John Stuart Mill. He gave the people liberty of personal rights, without religion. Expounded eloquently by Ayn Rand, it is regarded today as extreme.
It became unfashionable when the social philosophies of Rousseau, Marx and Bentham were promulgated. They invoked equality and attended to the welfare of communities. Today they underwrite communal approaches that solve climate change, prevent pandemics and supply cheap energy.
Nevertheless, most human endeavour strives to remain under individual control. Family, home, education, employment and recreation are pursued for individual interest, resisting the incursions of corporations and governments, whose intents are to exploit it, for their own benefit.
Turkeys Not Bees traces the lives and philosophical bearings of two young people whose journey together makes a stand for their own individual interests. The fiction story is exciting, exalting individual achievement, responding positively to forced engagement with collectivism.
Available on Amazon. Reviewed at martinknox.com
Are you uneasy about nanny state overreach and becoming encultured with ambiguous meanings, like George Orwell’s Newspeak in his totalitarian satire ‘1984’: oldthink; ungood; goodthink; doublethink; thoughtcrime; unperson? In 2022, individualism is under threat. That is the theme of the satire ‘Turkeys Not Bees’. Chance is an ambitious young physicist who, in frustration, quits a good job and goes back to university. His career is interpreted by the philosophies of Simone de Beauvoir and Nietzsche. His girlfriend Megan becomes an Olympic athlete, self-coached with philosopher Heidegger’s phenomenology and Mihaly’s flow. When the two are threatened with Covid vaccination, they adulate the solitary independent lifestyle of the brush turkey and reject collectivism. They campaign by non-violent civil disobedience to stop the profit-driven sport, health, employment and government industries from taking over. It’s not too late.
Book available from Amazon. Reviewed at martinknox.com