“The highest form of efficiency is the spontaneous coordination of a free people.” – Woodrow Wilson
As alluded to in my previous post, good friend, fellow collaborator and revolutionary, Ryan Frisinger and I are very close to rolling out a Patreon project promoting our brand of radical citizen science, bio-hacking, practical philosophy and change-the-world activism. Stay tuned for that.
In the meantime, here is a work-in-progress mission statement of sorts for our project. This will be fleshed out further as we dial things in. But this will at least give you an idea of our direction.
I’d love to hear your comments and ideas on this project. We intend to exist in a similar vein as Rhonda Patrick’s campaign, though more interactive, project driven, and practical. Keeping to the Theory to Practice ideal.
The NOSFIR mission is simple in design, yet ambitious in reach: we leverage informed citizen science, bio-hacking, and applied philosophy to revolutionize personal health, cognition, consciousness, and societal vibrancy.
NOSFIR (noospere): “a postulated sphere or stage of evolutionary development dominated by consciousness, the mind, and interpersonal relationships.”
On the commodification of knowledge
We at NOSFIR believe that the institutionalized Science of the establishment is not only not representative of, but in fact an implicit impediment to, the inclusive, open-source principle that is the true essence of the scientific practice and method. In fact, Science — far from being democratized and open-sourced — is now wholly commodified.
This commodification of the sciences has resulted in the funneling of vision, research and discovery through isolated conduits, to then reside segregated in silos only accessible by those who’ve been deemed (by the controlling establishment) as adequately blindered to influences beyond the particular silo’s domain. This reductionist model serves to disassociate the true seeker, scientific artisan, and polymath from access and integration of the vast array of tools, methods and knowledge that might otherwise serve him and society at large. In this environment, creative scientific artistry suffers; true craftsmanship recedes to vague remembrances. In time, the resources poured into the guarding of these silos exceed the value of that being guarded. Both the scientific artisan and the society in which the artisan finds himself are swallowed in the stagnation that results from the establishment’s attempted control and manipulation of knowledge.
As well, the very act of the establishment’s being the gatekeeper of those deemed worthy of access to this knowledge breeds an echo chamber of stagnation. Where there is no incentive for creative, “outside of the silo” thought (and, in fact, where contrarian opinion is virulently decentivized), progress is hamstrung. Or, to quote Max Planck:
A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.
… popularly stated as: science advances one funeral at a time.
This is the current state of Science today. But we can do better. In fact, we have in the not-so-distant past; we’ve just forgotten the path. And we’ve lost the initiative to fight.
At NOSFIR, we value critical thinking, scientific and esoteric literacy, and epistemocratic nature. We believe these virtues are of vital importance for a healthy individual, and a vibrant society.
Further, we understand that formal education may contribute to, but is no substitute for, skill, artistry, and literacy. One formally educated in a defined field of study has demonstrated (as defined by the establishment’s accrediting agency) some level of understanding; one literate in a field of study both understands and can affect meaningful real world results. A PhD in music theory does not make one a virtuoso. And yet, the virtuoso can affect perfection beyond what the accrediting agency can recognize, or even conceive of as being possible. We do not discount formal education as such, but rather treat it as one more dollop on the artist’s pallette. Above all, however, we maintain that real world results trump credentials.
We at NOSFIR encourage and elevate skill, artistry, and literacy, thereby empowering those who possesses it to be active contributors to their own health outcomes and, as a consequence, elevating the vibrancy of all sentient beings. And we challenge the establishment’s resolution that evidence is only valid if verified by the establishment’s approval. Our model is more apprenticeship than the standard digest-and-regurgitate method. We model how to think, integrate, and affect outcomes such that our patrons learn to merge with and manage the continuous epigenetic barrage that this bewilderingly complex world delivers.
This we believe: the master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house¹. That is to say, we cannot wait for science, as controlled by Academia, to become nimble, inclusive, decentralized and responsive. Time is valuable, and waits for no man. The old plantation has become obsolete; it’s once fertile fields are now no more than fallow potential; fresh ideas withering for lack of verve and cross-pollination. The artisan asked too many questions, demanded results in lieu of theoretical masturbation, valued outcome over tenure, and proficiency over pedigree. The artisan demanded a model supportive of outcome-based practice. In short, the artisan became a threat to the master’s superiority and status. And thus, the artisan’s access to commodified Science was restricted. Both by means and by pedigree.
We identify with the artisan who has burning questions, yet is denied an expressive canvass. The seeker who formulates hypotheses and working experiments and doesn’t see the point in pandering to an ossified establishment to deem those questions worthy of commission. Free of the establishment’s control, and armed with ravenous curiosity and the scientific method, we at NOSFIR work with our patrons to formulate and test hypotheses in order to find answers to the questions that burn in our soul. We publish our protocols, equipment designs and methodologies, and share our bench experience such that following artisans may validate, improve upon and expand on our findings.
Because we at NOSFIR are ourselves outside-of-the-establishment seekers, our only agenda is the uncovering of Truth. We paddock no sacred cows, least of which are our own preconceived notions. And we honor Nature’s abhorrence of both a vacuum, and the arbitrary territorial boundaries of established academic disciplines.
As such, we deplore any and all impediments to independent research. We believe in and uphold the fundamental human right to arrive independently at an understanding of the world, as well as to freely explore one’s own consciousness. We believe that curiosity and creative urge knows no boundary (political, socioeconomic, or otherwise), but that the opportunity to act on that curiosity and urge all too often hinges on the arbitrary boundaries drawn by those who would attempt to monopolize the act of discovery. Our aim is to dismantle the “master’s house” by creating decentralized systems and processes that lay beyond the master’s control. We criticize, not with mere rhetoric, but by creating a new and better alternative.
At NOSFIR, we champion the spirit of the citizen scientists who have so selflessly blazed the trail before us. Da Vinci, Copernicus, Newton, Franklin and Tesla. Those whose ideas and passions were scorned and constrained by the establishment precisely because they put a glaring and embarrassing spotlight on the establishment’s inadequacies. Furthermore, we reject any paternalistic attempt by the establishment to silence independent research by inspiring fear of reprisal within the community, or fear of the unknown among the masses. We work for the betterment of all sentient beings and refuse to be limited by the constructs and confines of the “master’s house”. We will not be dissuaded by the establishment-leaning merchants of doubt.
Further, we assert that defining “health” as the average phenotypic expression within a generally unhealthy society establishes and encourages conditions for a de-evolutionary “race to the bottom”. The expansive Truth of the human body cannot be fully defined nor contained within the arbitrary limits of traditional empirical mechanisms which value proof of the isolated and specific above observation of the dynamic that are obvious, though unsupported by the limits of traditional, variable-control research. New paradigms require new tools, new skillsets, the desire for exploration, and a risk tolerance for such exploration. We refuse to allow analysis paralysis and a fundamental disregard for the natural workings of the genome and its supporting molecules to impede the quest for ever improved outcomes.
“A million anecdotes does not one shred of evidence make”. True enough. And yet, what’s been tragically missing from the realm of science in the last 70 years is humility and common sense. A kind of elitist repulsion toward applying scientific rigor toward these accumulated anecdotes. As if the accumulation of anecdotal evidence in and of itself discredits the phenomenon from serious study. We aim to change that mindset, once and for all. That parachutes are wildly effective for their intended use is anecdotally evident; I’d gladly strap one to my back prior to jumping from a plane, even in the absence of a peer-reviewed study on the phenomenon. Getting to the root of why they work is another matter, the vigorous study of which may lead to design improvement, novel uses, or alternative methods. At NOSFIR, we embrace the yin and yang of uncovering truth; common sense and intellectual rigor.
Welcome to the new paradigm. We hope you’ll join us in helping create the future of research.
1 Lorde, Audre. “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House.” 1984. Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches. Ed. Berkeley, CA: Crossing Press. 110- 114. 2007.
Also, Ryan was recently featured on the Robb Wolf podcast. For a super interesting intro to Ryan and his work, check that out, here.
And for additional reading, consider:
Heal thyself, harden thyself, change the world –