Paul Nervy Notes
“Jokes, poems, stories, and a lot of philosophy, psychology, and sociology.”

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Leisure, climbing.  ---  .This section is about climbing.  Topics include:   ---  1/24/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Climbing as a religious pursuit.  Nature in general, and the mountain in particular, is held in awe and worshipped for its size and power, like a god.  Makes man feel small and insignificant.  (2) Another view of climbing sees Nature, and the mountain, as a foe of man to be battled and beaten.  ---  01/06/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Climbing for the scenic beauty.  (2) Climbing for the joy of physical movement.  Especially strenuous physical movement.  ---  01/03/1994

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Dance analogy.  (2) Chess analogy.  (3) Sculpture analogy.  The rock is minimalist sculpture.  You are meant to look at it, feel it, move around on it. (4/09/93) (4) Flatland analogy: climbing is like being on the ocean, or in the desert, or on the plains.  It is two dimensional. (5/22/93) (5) Geometric analogy: the two climbers are points, the rope is a line, the wall is a plane.  An austere, severe, spare, simple environment, or world.  ---  01/01/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) How is climbing similar to traditional sports?  Both accomplish nothing.  Both do the useless.  (2) How is climbing different from traditional sports?  Climbing is not as bad as traditional sports in other respects.  ---  4/17/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) If a mountain is looked at as a form of sculpture, then what does the mountain "say"?  (2) If a route up a mountain is a sculpture, then what does the route "say"?  The route is a line resembling a bent piece of coat hanger.  The route exists as a three dimensional skewed line if you take away the mountain.  ---  8/2/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Meditative aspects of climbing.  Belay meditation.  At the belay one is still and quiet and focused on one thing, the safety of the climber.  (2) Yogic aspects of climbing.  Climbing moves are like yoga poses.  ---  5/16/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Psychological approaches to climbing.  (A) Freudian.  Death drive.  Sex drive suppression.  Sex symbolism.  (B) Risk taking personality.  Why not gamble in Vegas instead of climbing?  (2) The bio-evolutionary approach to climbing.  Human ancestors climbed in the trees of Africa.  (3) Sociological approaches to climbing.  (A) Climbers vs. non-climbers.  (B) The climbing community.  (C) Rope mates.  ---  8/3/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Psychology and sociology of climbing.  (2) History of climbing.  (3) Technology of climbing.  Tools and techniques of climbing.  (4) Philosophy of climbing.  Ethics of climbing.  ---  11/12/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  (1) Why do kids enjoy climbing trees?  (2) To what degree is adult mountaineering a continuation of the childlike joy of tree climbing?  (3) Why do not most adults enjoy climbing trees as much as children enjoy climbing trees?  (4) Why does the childlike joy of (tree) climbing continue into adulthood in some individuals whom we call mountaineers?  ---  8/26/2001

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Barefoot bouldering is so pure.  The ancients could have done it!  ---  1/1/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Bouldering and soloing is useless and physical.  Me now, with the philosophy, is useless and mental.  ---  11/27/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Bouldering.  Instead of merely brushing off the boulder, why not give the boulder a good sudsy wash, towel it dry, give it a powder, and then apply a pleasant smelling cologne?  ---  5/28/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Chess analogy.  Climbing is like chess.  Chess games are often described, using a notation system, as a series of moves.  Climbs can also be described, using a notation system, as a series of moves.  Types of climbing moves include strength moves, awkward moves, reach moves, thin moves on tiny holds, balance moves, etc.  ---  10/5/2002

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climb for the beauty, for the mental joy, and for the physical joy (many types of movement, and strenuous exercise).  ---  01/01/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climb name: Birdman.  After the ancient Easter Island cliff climbing contest.  ---  7/7/1998

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers cling to the rock like a baby baboon to its mother.  Climbing is the cling sport.  The clutch sport.  ---  04/24/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  (1) Climber as amateur.  Amateurs do it for fun.  (2) Climber as pro or wanna-be pro.  Pros do it for money.  There are several types of professional climbers.  Sponsored climbers try to make a living from endorsements from climbing gear companies.  Climbing guides try to make a living by leading amateurs up climbs.  ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  (1) Climber as hedonist.  Scrambling over sun warmed rock.  Having fun.  (2) Climber as masochist.  Freezing on icy belays.  Suffering high altitude sickness.  ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  (1) Climber as introvert.  It is easy to argue that climbers are introverts.  (2) Climber as extrovert.  Its not as easy to argue that climbers are extroverts.  ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  (1) Climber as mindless jock.  Athlete.  (2) Climber as intellectual.  Abstract.  Apart from world.  Thoughtful.  ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  Climber as aesthete.  Concerned with beauty.  Enjoys the views.  Enjoys the mountain as an art object.    ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  Climber as explorer.  Wants to be the first to climb the mountain.  Wants to be first to climb a line or route on the mountain.  ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  Climber as someone who wants to hide from the world.  Climber as someone who wants to hide from other people.  Climbing as a retreat to nature.  Climbing as avoidance, repression, denial.  ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbers, types of.  Climbing as obsession.  Climber as obsessed hobbyist.    ---  6/12/2007

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing analysis.  The standard is a ninety degree wall with hand holds that are four fingers wide.  1 inch holds = 5.5.  1/2 inch holds = 5.6.  1/4 inch holds = 5.7.  1/8 inch holds = 5.9.  Then start reducing the length of the holds from 4 to 3 to 2 to 1 finger, and the same width for foot holds.  Then tilt the wall backwards or forwards from slab to overhanging.  Then tilt the holds backwards and forwards from incut to slopers.  Then vary the distance between the holds, and also the direction of the holds on the wall.  Then find out how high the person can climb these holds before they burnout (distance and time).  ---  01/06/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing and other adventure sports are about seeing where the limits are.  (1) The limits of the physical world.  (2) The limits of the self.  (A) Physical limits of self.  (B) Psychological limits of the self.  Seeing how you perform under stress.  Exploring and developing character.  Seeing what you are capable of.  Finding out your abilities.  Pushing the envelope.  Testing yourself.  ---  2/24/2001

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing and sex.  Climbing as a suppression of sex urge?  What isn't a suppression of sex urge?  Only sex isn't a suppression of sex urge.  ---  6/24/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing and sex.  Mountains can remind one of  tits (ex. The Tetons).  Pinnacles can look like dicks.  Crack climbing can bring to mind the pussy.  Its like theories of art that see everything in sexual terms (see Arts, visual arts).  ---  6/24/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing and the East.  Consider climbing and its relation to both Zen and Yoga.  (1) Climbing and Zen.  When climbing, in one's effort not to fall and perhaps die, one becomes very focused and attentive to the holds at hand.  A by-product of this prolonged concentration is an altered mental state.  In this way, climbing is similar to Zen which also uses techniques of attention to create altered mental states.  Two very common Zen techniques are to focus on one thing and to focus on nothing.  The Zen technique of focusing on one thing (like a mantra or a mandala) is similar to climbing's focus on the next move.  The Zen technique of focusing on nothing is a step beyond, and it involves emptying the mind.  I would say here that the Notes attempts to add to this repertoire of techniques by asking the practitioner to try to focus on everything :).  (2) Climbing is similar to yoga in that it uses strenuous physical positions and body control to help us achieve a mental control that helps us achieve an altered mental state.  ---  8/3/2001

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing as escape.  (1) Escape from what?  Escape from self.  Escape from other people.  Escape from an environment.  Escape from an idea, emotion, or attitude.  (2) Climbing attracts the anxious.  Climbing is akin to running away.  If you are unconsciously anxious, then your need to flee may manifest itself in the form of climbing.  ---  5/28/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing as exploration is exemplified by the value that climbers put on first assents.  (2) Even if someone else has climbed it before, it is still personal exploration if I have not climbed it before?  (3) Even if I have climbed it before, is it still exploration?  ---  1/1/2002

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing as play.  Climbing as fun.  Its not so much that most adults have forgotten how to climb, its that most adults have forgotten how to play.  ---  5/28/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing as spirit quest.  (1) The following techniques are useful for a person to get an idea (or attitude) to occur to them.  (A) Fasting.  Reducing food intake.  Hunger.  (B) Physical exertion and perhaps even physical pain.  (C) Strange new environments.  (ex. the journey or the wild).  (D) Elements of danger.  (ex. the wild).  (2) Climbing has all four of the above elements.  Climbing is the equivalent of the American Indian notion of the "spirit quest".  These techniques help focus the mind on the important.  These techniques help us see clearly.  The "vision quest".  These four techniques are really about changing your brain chemistry in subtle ways.  Achieving the right mix of hormones and neurotransmitters.  ---  9/18/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing as symbolism.  From 1750 to 1950 climbing was symbolic of human attempts to achieve.  Climbing was symbolic to climbers and to society at large.  The period of climbing symbolism ended with the conquest of Everest.  Climbing changed after Everest was conquered in that climbing ceased to be symbolic to society at large.  I think that symbolic actions are sub-optimal.  Symbolism is too close to ritual.  Ritual is too close to obsessive compulsive disorder.  Constant hand washing and constant mountain climbing, what is the difference?  ---  8/15/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing attracts the depressed.  The unconscious mind symbolically equates the mountain heights with exhilaration.  The unconscious mind symbolically equates the lowlands with depression and despair.  If you are unconsciously depressed then you unconscious desire to improve your mood may manifest itself in the form of climbing.  ---  5/28/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing endgame.  Every hold on every rock in the world will be digitally recorded.  Every possible move from hold to hold will be graded.  ---  4/11/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing gets you thinking bigger, broader, and baser.  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing is a mixture of excitement and calm.  The risk of death in climbing triggers specific excitement-inducing neurotransmitters and hormones like adrenaline.  The space and the views in climbing trigger specific calmness and tranquillity-inducing neurotransmitters and hormones like serotonin.  So why do people climb?  Its like people who take uppers and downers at the same time.  ---  8/25/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing is about transcending and overcoming.  ---  2/9/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing just gets you very cold, very hungry, and very tired.  ---  04/01/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing means getting free of people (self reliance), getting free from society (freedom of values), and getting free from things (learning to live simply with little).  You learn what you can be and can't be. Sometimes you learn you can be more or less than you had thought.  ---  03/20/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing phenomena: self competition, dangerous, creative, social outsiders, outside in nature, aesthetic beauty, freedom.  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing provides beautiful workout equipment (the rock), in a beautiful outdoor setting (the forest).  The workout becomes varied fun or play, with a thought element too, not boring repetition in a sweaty, stuffy box, which is too much like work.  ---  08/14/1994

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing pure: solo, barefoot, with no prior knowledge of the route.  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing was fun because the mountains were awe inspiring, incredible and outrageous.  But after a while it became no big deal.  The height and exposure and size of mountains did not overwhelm anymore.  I stopped climbing because it was not fun anymore.  ---  7/18/1998

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing, like any other hobby, is a way to avoid thinking about your life and the world.  ---  12/5/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Climbing.  (1) Crud environment (cold, wet, rain, snow).  (2) Hard work (physically and psychologically exhausting).  (3) Dangerous, stressful, uncertain of success, and lonely.  (4) Air, food, and water are all deprived.  (5) All to prove to yourself and the world how much you can take, and that you are tough and brave.  (6) To do what no one has done before; to achieve glory.  (7) Intellectual enlightenment and emotional peace.  (8) It is masochistic.  It is ascetic (poor and celibate).  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Critiques of climbing.  (1) Climbing is useless.  Climbing accomplishes nothing productive.  Climbing is a useless, feel good activity, much like drug abuse.  (2) Climbing is dangerous.  Climbing magazines have obituaries of climbers who died climbing.  You don't see that in many other sports.  Besides dying, many climbers are seriously injured in climbing accidents.  Death and injuries have a negative effect on other people.  (3) Do something more useful and less dangerous.  ---  9/7/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Eco-friendly climbing: soloing barefoot with no chalk.  ---  07/04/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Egoism and climbing.  (1) Climbing is self serving.  (2) Climbing is useless, nonproductive, meaningless.  (3) Climbers die, hurt themselves, and hurt loved ones.  (4) Climbing is fun for fun's sake, or leisure for leisure's sake.  ---  5/15/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Egoism and climbing.  Climber as egoist says he just wants to have fun.  And he says he can climb any way he likes.  The egoist climber disregards any ethical concerns about ends and means, and that is a mistake on his part.  ---  4/28/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Egoism and climbing.  Climber as egoist.  What drives people in droves to the summit of Mt. Everest while the second tallest mountain is climbed far less often?  Ego.  ---  4/17/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Environmental climbing gear.  (1) Barefeet.  (2) Natural fiber climbing rope.  Brand slogan will be the adage: "The leader must not fall".  (3) Natural rock chockstones for protection.  ---  4/29/2001

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Evolutionary aspects of climbing.  Climbing the tree is dangerous and scary, due to possibility of falling and getting injured or killed.  Yet, climbing the tree also gives one feelings of safety, due to being out of reach of predators.  Climbing higher in the tree affords more safety from predators yet more danger from falling.  So we see that, even from prehistoric times, climbing balances safety feelings and danger feelings.  Climbing triggers fear-inducing neurotransmitters and calm-inducing neurotransmitters.  Uppers and downers.  ---  5/16/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Excited, yet calm.  (1) People climb because climbing produces simultaneous feelings of excitement and calm.  The height and exposure in climbing produces feelings of excitement.  The far reaching views and the meditative aspects of belaying produce feelings of calm.  Climbers seek simultaneous feelings of positive excitement and positive calm.  (2) Climbing also sometimes produces feelings of negative excitement and negative calm.  Climbing sometimes produces negative excitement which produces fear.  Climbing sometimes produces feelings of negative calm which produces boredom.  (3) Humans pursue many activities that produce simultaneous feelings of positive excitement and positive calm.  (A) Sexual intimacy produces simultaneous feelings of positive excitement and positive calm.  (B) Taking drugs, such as stimulants and tranquilizers (uppers and downers), can produce feelings of excitement and calm at the same time.  (C) When a person is absorbed in a task, in a state of "flow", or in "the zone", they often report feeling positive excitement and positive calm at the same time.  (D) People enjoy simultaneous feelings of excitement and calm.  People will often seek out experiences that produce simultaneous feelings of excitement and calm.  ---  12/1/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Five ways to look at climbing.  (1) Climbing teaches you how to deal with the big stonewall.  Stonewall as in dead silence.  You learn to read the featureless face.  (2) Climbing is about surmounting obstacles.  Slalom skiing is about going around your obstacles.  (3) Climbing as a way to confront the void.  A way to give meaning to chaos.  (4) The climb as graffiti.  Leave your mark.  (5) Accomplish a task.  Peak baggers.  Route baggers.  ---  2/26/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Hint for climbers.  Put a chalk sock in your briefs.  Keeps you cool and fresh all day long.  And it impresses the ladies.  ---  10/2/2004

Leisure, climbing.  ---  In the past, when climbers were few in number, the question was, "Why climb?"  Today, when climbers are many in number, the question becomes, "What are the reasons to not climb?"  ---  4/17/2005

Leisure, climbing.  ---  More ways to be into climbing.  (1) Physical aspect: fitness freaks.  (2) Intellectual challenge: vertical chess, climbing as puzzle.  (3) Beauty of physical movement: climbing as dance.  (4) Nature worship freaks.  (5) Pure aesthetics: rock as sculpture.  (6) Danger lovers and risk takers.  (7) Competition nuts: record breakers.  (8) Philosophical, mystical types.  (9) Psychological, sociological types.  (10) Historical types (me).  (11) Religious freaks.  (12) Mountaineers (peak baggers): rock, snow and altitude.  (13) Rock jocks and sport climbers (plastic walls).  ---  04/28/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Most people take one of two views.  (1) They think climbing is nuts.  (2) Or they are totally obsessed by climbing.  (3) Very view can look at climbing from both sides with sympathy to arguments pro and contra.  Few who understand climbing well can look at it critically.  ---  02/22/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Mountain climbing is like sex in that it provides an obvious accomplishment that cannot be undone.  It builds self confidence.  It can become addictive in and of itself because it gives one an endorphin boost.  So many other accomplishments in life are inobvious or can be undone.  ---  4/10/2003

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Mountains are interesting because flat land is boring.  ---  8/2/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Mountains give the aerial view, the overview, the general view.  Ascending has often been associated with progress, and transcending.  Thus we see how my leisure pursuits mirrored my personality and philosophical pursuits.  It was an unconscious predecessor.  Independence from parents, society, technology, life.  Freedom from life is death.  It is not so crazy.  ---  07/14/1993

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Nine views of climbing.  (1) Climbing as a physical metaphor for "progress" and "achievement".  This is why you see top business executives trying to climb the highest peaks on every continent.  (2) Climbing as being "above" everyone else.  The climber "looks down" on everyone else.  (A) One variation has the climber taking the view that he is of the same kind as everyone else (human) except a better person.  Cop a superior attitude to cope with feelings of inferiority.  (B) The second variation has the climber taking the view that he is not only better but also a different type (non-human).  He feels he has transcended himself.  He feels like a god.  (3) Climbing for safety.  Like you climb a tree to escape a bear.  Like you use a position of height for military advantage.  (4) Climb to be taller than everyone else.  Climbing as analogous to wearing platform shoes.  (5) Climbing as an escape from civilization and self.  (Run away).  As opposed to climbing in order to discover and explore the world and yourself.  (Run toward).  (6) Climbing to be able to see far and wide.  To get the "big picture".  (7) Climbing for the exercise.  (8) Climbing for the risk.  The feeling of "being on the edge of oblivion".  (9) Climbing for the feeling of playing with gravity.  Like surfers do.  Surf the rock.  ---  8/25/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Reasons for climbing.  (1) Adventure, risk, adrenaline junkies.  (2) "This is insane, let's do it!".  The useless, absurd and comic.  Dada.  (3) Exhibitionism.  Look at me!  (4) Commitment.  Multi-day endurance marathon.  Total immersion.  (5) Intensity of experience.  ---  9/5/1998

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Reasons why people climb.  People like to climb because people feel safe occupying the high ground.  Climbing makes people feel safe, not in danger.  (1) Our ape ancestors used to climb trees to escape danger.  Especially the female apes?  (2) Occupying the high ground has strategic value in warfare.  ---  01/23/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Rock climbing as a conversation.  (1) The rock speaks to us and we listen to what the rock says.  (2) What is the rock saying?  We read the rock.  The rock is a text.     PART TWO.  (1) What are you saying when you climb?  Climbing, like dance, is a type of communication.  Climbing is expressive.  We communicate to other people when we climb.  We communicate to those who watch us climb.  (2) Climbing is a type of communication with self.  We speak to ourselves and we listen to what we are saying.  We communicate with self through physical movement, emotional responses, and thoughts.  ---  7/7/2003

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Rock climbing is hedonistic, mountaineering is masochistic.  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Rockclimbing is not about danger.  Rockclimbing is about fear.  For if one does not fear, then one gets no thrill out of danger.  When I no longer feared the heights, I no longer was interested in climbing.  It became like work, a job.  Another example, if one does not fear dying, then Russian roulette losses its thrill.  When one solo climbs without fear, what does one call that?  Walking?  (2)(A) What is danger without fear?  Courage?  Fool-hardiness?  Just doing one's job?  (B) What is fear without danger?  Anxiety?  ---  3/11/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Sport climbing is to mountain climbing as masturbation is to sex.  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  The mountain exists as a three dimensional solid form.  The route exists as a line on the surface of the mountain.  ---  12/28/2006

Leisure, climbing.  ---  The mountains.  Candles fluttering in the wind.  Reminding me of pain of loneliness vs. desire for independence.  Also, the fragility of life and thus the value of life.  If, like life, something is rare, fragile, and can do much, then it is worth a lot.  Like me.  ---  09/01/1994

Leisure, climbing.  ---  The questions that made me start climbing were (1) How do they do that?  Tools and techniques.  (2) How does it feel, experientially, physically, emotionally?  (3) How does it change you?  How does it change your character (self reliance, risk, bravery, etc.)?  (4) I started from curiosity.  I stopped from boredom, and because I had developed other interests.  ---  05/18/1994

Leisure, climbing.  ---  The unconscious hope of mountaineers is to get away from it all, rise above it all, and see the big picture.  ---  12/30/1992

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Views of climbing.  Climbing as intellectual problem solving, pure and simple.  This view ignores the emotional, character building aspects of fear and bravery.  This view also ignores the physical aspects like jock or gymnast or dancer.  ---  01/07/1997

Leisure, climbing.  ---  What happened with me and climbing?  At some point it did not become necessary to climb the rock.  I would just scramble up the cliff and pick a spot with a view, like some kind of cliff animal, a mountain goat perhaps.  Or I would become a creature made of rock, like some kind of rock gargoyle.  Or I became part of the rock itself, like the spirit in the cliffs.  Or I disappeared, and it was just the rock, sky, river and forest.  And then I learned to take it with me.  Mountain mind.  ---  6/4/2000

Leisure, climbing.  ---  What is climbing like?  (1) When you face the rock wall you turn your back on the world.  Like an ostrich with its head in the sand.  (2) Staring at the wall looking for a hold is like searching the floor for a contact lens.  (3) When you take the hard way instead of the easy way, just for the fun of it.  ---  8/1/1998

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Why do climbers climb?  (1) The famous response by Sir Edmund Hilary, the first man to summit Mt. Everest, to the question, "Why did you climb it?", was "Because its there".  I will use his response as a starting point and make three additional observations.  (2) Another similar response that people often give to why they do a particular activity is "Because I can."  "Because I can" is different from "To see if I can."  For example, a runner often runs "Because I can" and not "To see if I can".  (3) Another reason a person may perform an activity is "To see if I can."  To see if they are up to the challenge.  (4) I suggest there is a fourth logical answer.  In addition to the three answers, "Because I can.", "To see if I can." and "Because its there.", there is also "To see if its there."  In some sense, a mountain does not become phenomenologically real to an individual person or to a society until it has been climbed.  There is a difference between the second-hand knowledge of hearing someone describe the mountain, and then seeing the mountain first-hand, and then actually setting foot at the base of the mountain and climbing to the summit of the mountain.  For humans, the highest form of knowledge seems to be touching an object.  People don't seem satisfied until they have held an object.  The mountains does not seem "most real" until we have climbed it.  Examples of this phenomenon are expressions like, "Coming to grips with x." and "Hands on knowledge of x."  ---  11/2/2001

Leisure, climbing.  ---  Why I liked climbing.  Climbing is a complete workout in mind, body and environment.  (1) Psychological.  (A) Drive: desire and motivation.  (B) Emotion: fear and happiness.  (C) Thinking: about holds and protection.  (2) Physical.  Aerobic and anaerobic.  (3) Environment.  Beautiful yet challenging.  (4) Social.  Trust, communication and teamwork.  ---  2/17/2000

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