Mar 092011

I have a continuing debate with a friend of mine about EQ, IQ and SQ, which, according to him are the three quotients that make up the human condition: Emotional, Intellectual and Spiritual.

Something like that anyway.

He says I have a very low spirituality level.

How’s my empathy? I ask.

Low, he replies.

You’re an idiot! I shout at him.

You’re a front-brain person, he retorts.

You mean I don’t believe whatever old shit people throw at me?

You need to be more in touch with your spiritual side.

Right, I said. Since you bring up the subject, here’s a picture someone I know took recently. What do you make of that?

Cigarette smoke, he said.

No, I told him.  Empty pub.  Photographer doesn’t smoke.

Smudge on the filter.

No filter.

Show me that again, he said.  A bit closer.

Ok, I said.

Jesus, he said.  That can’t be by accident.

Why not? I asked.

It’s too perfect.  That’s a man looking out at you.  See?  Eyes. Skull.  The whole lot.  It can’t be an accident.

You know what would worry me? I said.

You’re going to tell me anyway, aren’t you Bock?

I am.  What would worry me is this.  If some power out there was preventing this particular shape from happening by accident, then I’d be worried.  Why shouldn’t it happen by accident?

It’s too perfect.

You mean it’s highly unlikely.

No.  It’s impossible.

Why is it impossible? What makes it impossible?

You’re a front-brain person.

You’re an idiot.






  63 Responses to “IQ, EQ and SQ. Logic, Evidence, Emotion, Empathy and Spirituality”

Comments (63)



    There is such a thing as IQ, EQ and SQ. Only SQ means social not spiritual. It’s the complexity of human beings.
    But that’s not what you’re on about, right? :-)

    I once met the elderly sister of a neighbour. She lived in London in some poxy flat and all she had left was her Irishness and her religion. She came over to Ireland quite often.
    She was fascinating because she was the first person I’ve ever met in Ireland who really was into all this story-book stuff, things you’ve read about Ireland but never believed because it seems to be so, well. medieval. But bless her, she was a nice lady in a mad way.

    Anyway, once she showed me a picture she took in Italy at the grave or whatever of that Padre Pio, I’ve never heard of before then (before the time of google, mind).
    She cherished the picture because it showed some Italian scenery and some, ehm, smoky fuzz, blur smudge.
    Look at that, she said, Padre Pio popped up just when I took the picture (with her Kodak-throw-away).
    Isn’t it a miracle, she said. Padre Pio! He’s with us! I feel so blessed!

    Yes, I said, it’s a miracle indeed. Looked at the picture and nodded wisely.
    Not saying though that, if you take a picture against the sun theat there will be sun reflections. Or that cheap cameras aren’t exactly reliable.
    She was happy with her crap picture of probably the only man who ever showed her some attention. Why would I spoil it for her?

    Anyway, I can’t figure out your picture above. Interesting though. First thought was cigarette smoke, second was chemical cleaning stuff rising up the floor, third thought was just a technical illusion/mistake – fourth thought was that the ghost of my late Dad, in his time a friend of the drink and the ladies and general merriment, found out I’m living in Ireland and looks in every pub in the country where he could find his beautiful daughter and with her a free drink. Wouldn’t surprise me, if he works his way through EVERY pub…

    You see what you want to believe…


    He said it meant spiritual. Obviously he was trying to wind me up, as usual.

    Social, you say? I think I’m pretty sociable. Where is he so I can thump him?

    No, this post is about pretty much a variation on a theme. I’ve written it a hundred times before.




    Spookay.. I think you’re friend might be right about you Bock. You might be a front brained person. All though I’m not sure I know what that means.

    I think empathy is good. We might need it ourselves sometime.

    The photo? I wouldn’t have thought of it that way – a power preventing the shape from occuring by accident.. but rather it could be some creature from another dimension. Who knows.


    There you go. People talk about another dimension, but they never say what they mean by that.


    This is true. We can’t go into other dimensions it seems as our laws of physics are not the same.. so tis all conjecture. There is evidence of other dimensions apparently though.

    What’s that bit from Hamlet? “There are more things in heaven and earth.. than are dreamt of”.

    So we can’t prove everything really and what can’t be proven isn’t necessarily not true. That doesn’t mean you have to believe in any aul horseshit obviously.. but that we can’t dismiss everything off hand until it’s proven scientifically.


    Here’s what I ask people. Will your new dimension do away with the four we have already?


    You’d never know Bock.. there could be some erroneous quantum flux in our matter’s physical structure sometime and dimensions could collide and merge. :)

    Anyways I’m all for logic and provability.. just not to the extreme of not being a little teeny bit open minded to possibilities and theories not yet proven. You know, our existence itself is extremely unlikely.. so there ya go!


    I’m open-minded. After open-mindedness comes evidence.


    Great question…my head hurts now,……. also, I’m seein’ the photo in reverse ( seriously ) and it looks sorta like a ‘Terminator’ style effort , …Deep, eh ?


    I’ve often wondered, how is it possible to provide evidence for the essence of something?


    Easy. Start by defining the Something.


    I don’t think essence can really be defined though, in my opinion. Ok take a person.. how to provide evidence for the essence of a person? What I mean is, their personality, their characteristics.. their vibe.. etc.. You know, when someone walks into a room and you’re happy to see them.. that energy from a person.

    If you thought of someone you loved and thought.. ‘I wonder when they died how would I prove how they really were?’ . Ok you could show their bones or ashes possibly, but could you really show or prove anything to anyone else about them.. There are some things that can only be felt and experienced yourself. The essence of ‘things’.


    I think this is drifting into the world of subjective terminology. An endless loop of undefined words. Let’s get back on track.


    Yeah, tis subjective all right. :)

    All right back on track. Cool photo!


    “Will your new dimension do away with the four we have already?”

    How do we know we have four dimensions? Or more?
    We, the currently ruling creatures of this tiny irrelevant planet, know nothing. And don’t need to.
    Sometimes I see us as creepy crawlies trying to be intelligent for no other reason than to justify our existence. Which is the root of all evil.
    If I ask my dog she would tell me another story (food, walks, cuddles, play, chasing cars) and still thinks it’s all what life is about. Lucky her.

    We humans however are cursed to know about death and try to make sense of it.
    There is no sense. There is no purpose for life or death. We just happen to be here, evolved from chemical processes.
    Which is sad and that’s why we try to make sense and believe in some higher beings.
    Which is even sadder, because once you accept your are nothing to a supposed higher being you are doomed. But also free to chose how you want to live your short existence as an irrelevant being.
    It’s sadder because it’s harder and demands to live the life you want to live and not the one some power hungry, wannabe superior ancient or current being tries to force you with religion, politics and ideologies.

    But I do understand that spirituality, whatever that means, helps to cope with things we don’t understand.

    Sorry for ranting…. one of my pet topics…


    I think spirituality is something people invent because they need to believe it all means something. I can’t see what would be wrong with living well and then ceasing to exist.


    I think you could also find freedom in knowing there is no purpose or meaning to it all – to life or death and still believe or know there is a higher intelligence at work in the universe. Maybe it’s all a big game.. we wouldnt’ ask why does an artist create a beautiful painting.
    Personally I don’t try to make sense of anything because of death.. because well if that’s the end of it, sayonara then. I won’t know any different… but I choose to contemplate my own existence for it’s own sake.
    Contemplate isn’t the right word because I don’t think existence is something to be understood conceptually. Beingness can only be felt, in my opinion.

    There’s nothing wrong with living well and then ceasing to exist Bock.
    Personally, I don’t understand how we came from nothing – as in how you can get something from nothing? That’s where I start.
    How we just evolved into existence all by itself.. the rules were just set in motion, self fulfilling somehow for evolution, gravity.. all the natural laws – from nothing?


    There is nothing wrong with living well and ceasing to exist. There is nothing wrong with belief in life after death. Just different strokes filling an empty space on the basis of personal appeal.

    It is true, however, that scientists in the relevant fields agree that there is no proof that our physical reality exists or exists alone. All of our information is presented to us whole from our brain processes, and we barely understand how the brain works, therefore it is possible that our brains are presenting us with a ‘Matrix’-lke version of reality; a workable agreement amoung conscious beings that allows us to get on with things on some level. Consciousness exists, we all know. Scientists know. But it cannot be quantified in anyway; measured, weighed, sourced and the like. At this point, we just dont know. And of course quantum theory and the like have no final fixed and provable reality, they are theories. Mostly, we dont know – not the true nature of reality or the number or forms of dimensions. The sciences of cosmology, physics, neurology (sp?) are in large part educated guess work in lab coats.

    Actually, I like it this way. Mostly what we know is that mostly, we dont know.


    Last Halloween my friends wife took her two small kids out to ‘trick or treat’ and they dressed as ghouls. She decided to take a photograph of them down by the local graveyard. She used a good digital camera with inbuilt flash. She observed nothing spooky at the time but when she printed off some photos there was a wraith-like figure distinctly visible, right next to her 7year old son. There were also several luminous energy orbs of brilliant colours and various sizes that seemed to be floating about. I blew the image up 400% on my computer and all I can say is that it is very eerie. It does not look like a trick of light nor a lens defect, as all the other shots taken that night show no such phenomena. I cannot explain it, nor can anyone else I know including a very experienced professional photographer. I’ll look in my files for it and try post it on to you.
    There are more things in heaven and hell, Horatio, than man can ever dream of…


    From nothing?
    Where does this idea of “nothing” come from?
    It’s an invention arising from unfounded thinking.
    Yea, I remember, first of all there was “nothing”, then there was a world with me and a whole lot of other shit in it.
    Crap. This isn’t real.
    I don’t remember a “nothing.” You don’t remember a “nothing.”
    The idea of a nothing was put into your head by creationist indoctrination.
    Before you, there were your parents, grandparents, greatgrandparents, australopithecus, a few ratty things, a few wormy things, but there’s one thing we have never had in this family, my son, and that is, we have never had any “nothings.” Because nothings don’t have children. We are, all of us, the children of “somethings.”
    There is no beginning. There is no need for a beginning. The “beginning” of me is just stuff from my parents.
    When there is no beginning, there is no logical need for a nothingness before the beginning.
    Even this Big Bang business tries to talk about the beginning of time, and then it suggests that this entire process of timeflow may happen over and over, and even go into reverse.
    A monk takes a blank page and begins to write on it. First there is nothing, then there is text.
    Crap. He doesn’t begin anything. He is scratching on the skin of a calf that has been evolving for exactly as long as he himself has.
    As for the original photograph, yes, it’s definitely smoke from the front of an idiot’s brain.


    Well do me a favour and punch a hole in this theory. The first thing we are thought in Science is that energy cannot be destroyed but transformed from one form to another. We are basically energy so when we die the energy remaining goes somewhere right? Is this logic?
    As for the picture there is cig smoke that is all!


    We’re atoms. When we die, they become scattered.

    How did you establish the thing is cigarette smoke?


    Could be anything that behaves like smoke (aerosol, fine dust) and assuming that the statement that it’s not smoke is correct then who know what the hell the substance forming this is, or indeed if it’s not just some random trick of the light. Who knows? It’s impossible to tell from that image.

    Also, if that IS a spectre of some kind, I will be fucking freaked. It’s not human shaped, humanoid at best…..I think most people looking at the photo initially (me included) will see the shape of a man. But look closely; much of the “detail” your mind sees when you look at the picture is actually being given by textures and shapes from the background scenery; our minds do not like unclosed shapes and will subconciously use parts of the scenery to fool us into thinking that for example the “head” of the figure is a fully closed shape, when it’s not.
    But that’s just human nature, we subconciously anthropomorphisise stuff, innit?


    That’s right. We always try to see human characteristics in abstract shapes, and when we can’t find human, we look for something animal. After that we get to monsters. Didn’t everyone have a scary wardrobe some time in their life?

    I know the person who took the picture and he doesn’t smoke. I accept his assurance that he was in an empty pub taking pictures of the surroundings. If that was cigarette smoke, I’d be worried because it had to appear out of nowhere. Ghostly tobacco.

    It’s more likely to be some kind of optical phenomenon, and I’d be interested to know what people think it might be.


    If, after my demise, I decide to head to the pub for what passes for a pint, I would like to think that I wouldn’t return as an indistinct blob of smoke like substance that may or may not be a trick of light. Anyhoo, I would like to think I’d come back and scare the bejaysus out of staff and punters alike – much like I do now – and have the pub to myself.
    I once thought I saw a ghost in the pub but it turned out to be Slimey Pete.


    What will you be drinking — a bottle of smoke?


    Why was your friend taking pictures of a few tables and stools in an empty pub?


    I like to think that, if there is somewhere to go after you become worm food, that my love of drink will be recognised.


    It could be dust from someone sweeping the floor and highlighted by the flash of the camera, that might account for why the dust wasn’t noticed in the first place. As for its appearance, just pure coincidence!
    I really believe that ghosts exist in peoples minds only.


    It looks to me, like an extremely angry one eyed ram,seeking out the Bar owner “Wait till I find that bollicks, I’m going to give him a right good root up the hole”

    Do they serve Mutton stew in the Pub? Could you ask your friend?
    If they do? Then there’s you answer Bocky boy. Voila!


    I’m with you, Heedy. Good explanation too. Hadn’t thought of that. All I can tell you is what it isn’t . It is not some ghostly figure stopping in for a quiet pint.


    I don’t know why he takes these pictures. That’s just the sort of guy he is.


    I cant see any human shape at all. More like a decanter.
    Either that or its Jesus one-armingly holding the baby who in turn is dangling the cat by its eye-sockets.


    Kinda looks like the ghost of an outboard motor to me.


    I’ll have to ask him if the camera was in flames ay the time of shooting.That would explain it.


    Most new digital cameras often come with an infrared function to help with focus and flash settings. Even if the flash is off or blocked, if the infrared pulses it is reflected back at the camera. Many digital cameras can and do translate this reflected infrared light into a blue or white image. With digital cameras, there is the quirky problem of CCD-chip drop-outs. Digital cameras record information digitally composing images of pixels as a computer does.

    It would be arrogant for me to give hee-haw credence to a subject that basically cannot be proven either way. However, Glasgow sense tells me that it is not the dead you need to worry about, it’s the live bastards.


    That’s one of the more sensible suggestions I’ve heard.


    surely its ripley’s alien?


    I saw a programme once and the presenter was putting forward a theory that when you pop your clogs, God is there giving you a foresight into different lives that could be yours, and you choose one, and away you go. How sound is that?
    “I´ll have your man in the yellow hat and the villa in Rio, you OK with that God? Sound as a trout.”


    Excellent. That leaves the one where I’m George Best trapped in a hotel room with Miss World.


    Or Ridley’s alien, depending on our point of view.


    Jaysus Chief,
    I kinda got a handle on the multiple dimensions thing one night after watching this youtube video
    and seemed to all make sense when I dreamt about it, then woke up after the revelation but forgot to write it all down.
    Of course I naturally couldn’t remember a thing the following morning.
    (This was in my post drinking days n’ all)
    Watch some more videos about higher dimension (the physical rather than the spiritual kind)
    and maybe the thing in the photo is a remnant of a tesseract shadow in our three dimensions that is only cast in infra-red which can be picked up by the camera sensor

    Or it could be just a lumpa fly-shite on the sensor?


    To digress slightly for a moment. Even though I love science fiction, I think it has a lot to answer for. It gave people who have never put one second of effort into study of science the delusion that they understand the most abstruse theoretical concepts. What’s worse, because the same people have never tried to understand the basics, they don’t realise how hard it is and are therefore all the more certain in their ignorance.

    Now. Back to the point …


    Scientific explanation at last !

    Smoke + Mirrors = Dead Fianna Fail politician.

    No need to thank me Bock.


    L Ron Hubbard for example !!!!!


    And besides I’m fairly certain that If I did figger out multiple dimensions then the 4th or 5th dimension fuckers would just croak me and move me somewhere even more confusing, just to keep the secret like..


    Funny you should say that Geek, last night I was messing around with my home-made collider and I thnk I might have opened up a dimensional rift…anyway I managed to close it but not before…something…came through.
    There aren’t any words in this language to describe what I saw but suffice to say I’m now barricaded in my bedroom and am really fucking freaked out. I could hear it slithering and skittering all last night, but it’s gone quiet now. Maybe it’s gone, or maybe it dies. after this post I’ll take a peek and ‘klndgdfklghf.g.//……………argh…………………. fkddfklbnlgbfnkblfgb m,.cv


    Poor chap.




    I once had an out of body experience but it was back in my porn days.


    Back when I used to smoke, I often had an out of cigarettes experience.


    Caught this post late.

    FME 7: What evidence is there of other dimensions?

    Bock 10: “I’m open-minded. After open-mindedness comes evidence.” That’s a good one!

    FME 14: The energy you feel from that person – maybe it’s just the energy of your own reaction. Or maybe the person does send out some kind of energy – but that doesn’t mean that it remains after they die (not that that’s what you’re saying).

    Carrig 17 and Leo 22: Very well said – best I’ve heard that expressed in a while.

    Bock 18: Living well and then ceasing to exist sounds fine with me. What about responsibility to the world that remains, to to try to make it a better place, or at least not a worse one?

    FME 19: Something from nothing? Why not just say that the universe was always there? I know, Big Bang and all. Well, there’s a lot of people who think that “The Big Bang Never Happened”. That’s the name of a book published 20 yrs ago – check it out.

    Rmari 20: There IS something wrong with belief in an afterlife, if you then think that you know what it is and how to and who will get it, and then try to impose that on other people.

    Disposessed 21: Let’s see that photo!

    Jimmy 38: “Glasgow sense tells me that it is not the dead you need to worry about, it’s the live bastards”. Right on!

    About the photo: it does kinda look like an outboard motor. Or a being from star wars. I didn’t even see the face until I looked a second time. If it’s a face, why would only the right eye be visible? I see a helmet, with black eyes on the left side, right in front of the stool cushion. The “face” looks like the left side of something, the right side being the white whiff above it, connected at the bottom. We do tend ot see faces in places. The bottom of the whole thing is a little similar to the 3-legged table behind it. I think that Jimmy’s idea is probably closest to what it is. Maybe there was a partial exposure on the film before he took the picture (if it was film).

    Or maybe the guy is just hoaxing you.

    What do you see in this picture?


    Or how about this one? In the ads for CNN, look behind the boy (left pic) or to his right (right pic) – what do you see?

    Now in commercial stuff like this, there’s always the possibility that they slip some subliminal shot in there to influence viewers to do something. See, for example here, especially the Pepsi Max example (roll the cursor over the image to see the faces):

    Now of course, I’m not saying that your friend did this to this post’s picture. Just pointing out that these kinds of things are done. Have fun!


    “It’s impossible because it’s to perfect” “it couldn’t happen by accident”
    Isn’t that pretty much the basisof the Intelligent Design theory? I mean what are the odds of slum primival sludge undergoing seemingly random mutations in reation to it’s enviroment and eventnually, a few billion years later, turning into us. It couldn’t have happened by accident… yeah right.


    Looks like the boogying ghostly lovechild of the terminator and Alien.


    That’s the great Lead Belly returned to wreak vengeance on us all.


    Mr.Bock, Sir,

    I came across this article during my travel around your intriguing website.
    I have not read every single comment in response but I have scanned over them all.
    I may have missed something.

    Using my own medieval, “superstition-ridden”, “backward”, “unprogressive” reasoning I do not believe for one second that there is anything “spiritual” here.
    NONSENSE I shout! But is is a very clever trick especially if it was done using conventional equipment.

    Excepting the possible use of a very advanced digital camera my own offering is that the picture is a photograph of a re-reflection, (double reflection) using two mirrors, one slightly convex and the other slightly concave to produce a “ghost image” of something in the background. The “shoulders” on the image seem to coincide vaguely with the legs of the table in the right foreground and there is a “ghost mist” on the table legs themselves not observed elsewhere.

    The background needs to be examined very carefully for clues. (There appears to be a number on the wall at the back although it reads the right way around OK). Looking further.


    Correction: On the background examination, I should have said, the right side panelling above the bench —- those notices hanging there are just clear enough to discern that they read the right way. The “number” at the back is actually a fixture. Sorry.


    Most likely explanation: An ordinary photograph taken through an ordinary pane of glass with a transparent transfer applied to it. Available in any little kiddies toy shop.


    Add —– The only “spirits” you will ever see in that place are whiskey and rum and porter!!!


    Looks like the shadow of a pub touring martian, looking for a good music
    gig, he or she seems to have brought their guitar.

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