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Charlotte Philosophy Discussion Group Message Board › HUMANIANITY: The Most Important Religion

HUMANIANITY: The Most Important Religion

Bill Van F.
wvanfleet
Group Organizer
Charlotte, NC
Post #: 1,434
(Continued from previous post)

*On the contrary, I would say that a model of the world is what is created neurologically by my brain. I do agree that your subjective experience is all you can know and all you have to work with, but you can construct models with it that are models of the way the world is independent of your experiencing of it. And those models will only be accurate to the extent that they allow you to predict what is likely to happen, and what is likely to happen if you do some specific thing.
Correct. Agreed. This is the application of logic. I define logic as recognizing effectively cause and effect.
Here I would have to disagree. Logic does only one thing. It determines whether a proposition is consistent with a defined set of propositions. Lack of such consistency is called “contradiction.” It has nothing to do with cause and effect. Cause and effect are terms referring to the predictability of events. It is the rules of evidence, not the rules of logic, that help us to identify what we call “cause and effect.” They are what, in addition to the rules of logic, have given us science and technology. All of this is explained in the mind-body problem book.

*But within that subjective experience, you experience that which you regard as you and that which you regard as not you but something or someone else. That is normal thinking. And being concerned about others is healthy and beneficial to the world that you live in, and should be beneficial to you.
Being concerned about others can have a cost to your survival if its your main purpose in life.
I don’t agree. Being concerned about others, even if it’s your main purpose in life, does not imply self-destructiveness. To the contrary, to do your best to help others, you have to be in as good a shape as possible, physically and mentally, and you therefore should be concerned about your physical and mental health, safety, and capabilities.
As long as there is no cost to the individual and it is not some moral duty, its fine.
Everything that is valuable has cost. When you do something, you are not doing something else you could have done that might have some value to you. When you use your resources in one way, you give up the opportunity to use them in another. I might agree with you about the “duty” thing, but we would have to define our terms carefully. Is it okay that I consider being a good citizen to be my duty? Is it okay to consider waiting my turn to be my “duty”? Cleaning up after myself?

*Yes, I am all for rationality, consistency with the rules of logic and the rules of evidence. Here we agree completely.
"FIST PUMPS GALORE!!"
*It is damaging your equipment and making you less able to do your part to make the world a better place, for others as well as for yourself.
More aggreement. Our selves are aligning.
Taking care of yourself and having a joyful life is very important in doing your part.
Again I dont like what this sentence seems to imply. I have no part to play except what I choose to play.
Being self-supporting and doing a good job and taking care of a family are not parts to play?
As long as I dont aggress, and as long as my personal survival is my goal in life, I see no wrong which I'm doing.
So you have no wish to contribute, to do a good job, to help others, beyond the bare minimum of keeping yourself alive? Or if you do, what is that motivation besides the wish to do the right thing?

*Yes and no. I understand where you are coming from, I think. For instance, my example is 200 years ago you tried to tell me we would be able to get in a vehicle and travel 60 mph down the road, and I laughed at you, telling you I would skid off the road into the woods and would scare all the horses. But we can indeed use our imagination. We see people that range all the way from angry chimps to caring saints, and all in between. And we have the capacity to study and learn how better to rear our children (for instance, stopping punishing them and doing things far, far better with regard to reward, teaching, and modeling for identification), so that we turn out far, far better adults than we do on the average currently.
Our goals are so far removed now from survival, that we cant compare ourselves accurately with other species, who are moving along the goal of survival. So there is no way of knowing if our development will work out or flunk out.
But there is a way of influencing the odds. Become a Humanian. Help me to make the world a better place.

*Yes, one of the many, many bad outcomes of our reliance upon punishment.
We always relied on punishment.
And what has it gotten us?
Its not because of punishment. Its because we have turned from survival as a goal in behavior and moved toward emotion as the goal in behavior.
We use different terminology. Yours is confusing. See what you think of mine, in the chapter on “Basic Concepts: Determinants of Behavior”
Hedonism leads to suicide ultimately. Our evolutionary goal has shifted because of society.
Hmmm. I would like to know more about what you mean.

*Yes, we have lost track of the importance of our own contributions to the welfare of our “tribe.”
This does not apply. We are no longer in tribes. Contributions are not made for welfare. Again, this is a good thing.
I think it would be more accurate to say that we are still in the equivalent of “tribes,” but we have lost our awareness of this fact.

*I would like to hear more about this. This is not the way I see it.
I cant help it if your wrong.
Sure you can. Help me to see where I am wrong.
(Just joking)
Seriously!
This is the conclusion that I have reached. Society has become a buffer leading into hedonism and away from survival. This has led to self destruction and inefficiency.
I think there is a lot of truth in what you are saying. The missing part, as I see it, is the awareness that survival is a group thing. Without the group, without your fellow species members, you will die.

(Continued in next post)
Bill Van F.
wvanfleet
Group Organizer
Charlotte, NC
Post #: 1,435
(Continued from previous post)

*It is because we have repeatedly produced self-loathing and self-disparagement through our continual acts of punishment and have emphasized the importance of competition, such that someone has to lose. People kill themselves because they can’t stand the pain that they have learned to induce in themselves, having taken over the function of punishing the self in the place of the parent(s) having done so.
Very much disagree. This is clearly a point of divergence.
Great! I look forward to our sharing and comparing our ideas about this. You are probably much more consistent with the majority. I am very alone in my belief about punishment.
Punishment has always been around.
Yes, and so have a lot of other awful things. But I believe we can make the change.
Competition is so basic that it goes down to unicelled organisms. Competition always leads to improvement and self confidence, not self loathing.
Tell that to the kid who simply cannot keep up with the rest.
Self loathing is attributable to idleness, laziness, ease, and comfort.
I say it is a taught self-evaluation. Some highly conscientious people suicide.
When things were more difficult we had less self loathing and more resistence to the struggles life presented us.
I would have to see the data.

*A Humanian would take care of himself or herself first and foremost, so as to be able to do a good job of making the world a better place for everyone. Doing a good job is difficult when you are sick and disabled and depressed and out of shape.
The second part of the first sentence. "so as to be able to do a good job of making the world a better place for everyone." This is my issue. This everyone is an abstract idea that should never be a goal of our pursuits. If that is your ultimate goal, then himself or herself cant be first and foremost. Its one or the other. The sentence is a contradiction.
I don’t see the contradiction. You do one thing so as to be able to do something else better. What is contradictory about that? You work out so you will be a good ballroom dancer.

*We must indeed pay attention to our production of children, in the face of increasing overpopulation and the threat of ultimate collapse in the face of insufficient resources. And we must learn how best to rear children, rather than assuming that that knowledge is inborn.
I feel that overpopulation is not a problem, but could become one.
See some of Terry W’s posts. Maybe you think it is not a problem because you have not yet experienced it. That doesn’t mean it is not a problem.
I feel the best way to battle that is let woman have the option of having abortions.
I believe she ought to have that option, but there are far, far better ways to reverse overpopulation.
Insufficient resources would not be a problem if we let companies have more of a part to play other then government and allowed more privatization.
Your head is in the sand, I’m afraid.
The reason being that companies that are successful will never use up all the renewable resources because it would present a cost to future profits.
So we will always have oil, right? For the next million years, right?
Privitization would work because people would have incentive to keep clean their own property.
Don’t we see private companies dumping their waste in land, water, and air that belongs to others and even everyone?

*Are we using words the same way? Actually, “Humanian ethics” would be better terminology, but the word did not exist when I first coined the “rational-ethical ultimate ethical principle,” to contrast with the “authoritarian-ethical ultimate ethical principle.”
I skipped the rest because it was all aggreement. I dont feel there should be a universally agreed upon ethics. There should be personal ethics decided by individuals which allow them to achieve goals.
I believe it would be great if universally we all had the REUEP as our Ultimate Ethical Principle.

*We will as a species continue to have friendly debate until there is consensus, and even then will remain open to the possibility of being wrong.
The idea of a group deciding what is rational is ripe for abuse.
Yes, of course, except to the extent that we do it better. Transparency seems to be an important principle. Education also. And friendly debate.

This should be especially true if we believe that there is a truth outside of our minds. What if 99% of the world becomes Catholic? Does that mean that Catholicism is true? Doubtful in my opinion.
Yes, we agree on that. So what does Humanianity offer to reduce that abuse?

This again ends in a lot more agreement. I hope to make it to the next philosophy debate. I love to sit and speak about deep things. I am always hammering away at my own assertions, and trying to narrow them down to points of more certainty and none contradiction.
And I especially respect you for your willingness to enter into friendly debate. We will learn from each other.
I want to meet that Amanda Mitchell. She is an exceptionally cute looking girl. Perhaps a deep thinking philosopher? What is more attractive then that?
One who also is into ballroom dancing.

But remember, when you’re not experiencing her, she doesn’t really exist. Care to change your mind on that?
vincent
user 8236565
Kannapolis, NC
Post #: 23
Dear sir,

*Do children owe anything to society? Do they have any obligation to contribute to the functioning of the family? Do you have any obligation to your children? Do you have any obligation to become educated? To become self-suppporting? To take care of yourself and avoid expensive illness?
This statement mixes true obligations with non obligations and treats them the same. We must understand what an obligation is. An obligation is owed to someone on whom your life has depended on by their concious care (your parents), or on someone who will die without your care (your children), or upon debts incurred due to an agreed upon transaction. (Paying someone back money you owe someone) No one owes anything to a society. So to answer this question: No, children owe absolutely nothing to society or to anyone. They are not really old enough to take on responsibilites such as debt, they are not relying to society for survival (this is done by the parents, not by society. Even if the argument were made that they lived because of what society does for them, it must be remembered that "Society" doesnt do anything. Society is a collection of individuals living together. Everything society provides it does not provide to anyone's children, only to other individuals) When a child reaches the age of reason, then perhaps he may owe something to the family unit. Once the child reaches the age whereby he can function with some form of self reliance and he is given anything by the parents, then yes he may owe something back depending on the situation. However, not in cases where he or she have bad parents. In that case parents can do far more harm then good. So it would depend. Yes parents are obligated to their children, to not care for them and to let them die is to commit murder. You do not have an obligation to become educated. You have every right to skip getting an education. You have every right to make nothing of yourself. If you are self supporting you owe nothing to anyone because you are "self" supporting. If you arent then you must owe someone who would be whoever it is that is supporting you. Once again you owe it to no one to take care of yourself. You can become ill due to neglect or fat due to overeating, it is perfectly fine if its your choice. This is not a statement that pertains to owing anyone anything.
*So what you do has no effect on the happiness of others? Or it does, but that doesn’t matter?
What you do can have plenty of effect on the happiness of others. However, no actions you lead your life by should have others as the end in view. Actions should be self centered, even helping others should be done because it provides self satisfaction. To let others conditions and not your own dictate your actions is to not live as an individual, but to sacrifice your life to be a cog in a machine, or a number in a system, or something else just as vague as "system' or "machine" because to have any end view in mind other then self satisfaction is to lose your life for what will probably be some sub standard group. The majority of people are substandard when compared with the innovaters of history.
*Which is what?
The "survival axiom" (which I made up just for that message by the way) is the idea that all lifes actions all should boil down to the ability to survive over all else. All manners, ethics, customs, and traditions would completely erode if your or my lives were on the line. The instinct for survival trumps all. It is this current condition of humanity, where hedonism has trumped survival instinct, that I think has led to suicidal tendencies in humans. Perhaps its just the lymbic system. This is my thought process concernnig that matter, I might very well be wrong. I am always opened to being corrected. However, if society were placed into a life or death situation, all we consider to be the glue of our culture would come undone and we would kill one another to survive. Altruism leads to people killing themselves ultimately, survival when pushed to extremes leads to people killing each other. If it came right down to it, I'd rather be murdered then commit suicide.
*Is it possible that you don’t know how much help you have received? Do you have a single example?
Of course its possible. An example of what? I consider help to have been given on a case by case basis, its never give by society.
*But without the help of others, you would be dead!
I disagree. I am upset you think me so incompetent that I have to depend that much on others.
*Your parents and teachers never did anything for you? I have provided the CPDG for you and others.
My parents have. My teachers have. My parents from love, my teachers for money. If it wouldnt have been me they helped, it would have been someone else in my place. It wasnt done for me. Lets assess things based off of causes of behavior, not from circumstances.
*How did the word “owe” get into the discussion?
Because you used the phrase "give something back". This illustrates that I would be giving something back to someone for something. That means I owe someone or something for one thing or another.
*They know that other people exist, and there are some of us who want to do our part to make the world a better place for others, even if we don’t know them personally. Are you unable to be concerned about the enormous suffering that is going on in our world, among people you don’t know personally, and if you have the ability to do something about that suffering, would you have no motivation to do so?
I want everyone to do well. I am powerless to help those suffering people. If I could rely on magic, I would fix this problem so that everyone had the basic neccessities. No more or less!! If you want to make the world a better place for others that is great and admirable. If you live only to make the world a better place for others, if that is the end in all your actions, that is quite deplorable.
*Would you prefer to live in a society in which everyone cared about the welfare and happiness of everyone, or in one in which no one cared about the welfare and happiness of anyone else?
How could anyone imagine a society which opperated at either extreme? Both would probably lead to destruction in one way or another. That is if we use our imagination really well to imagine this very unimaginable situation.
*You don’t think that we humans are looking for ways to promote our survival and ways to have better lives? You don’t believe we have division of labor, taking of roles, cooperation, dedication to goals outside of and in addition to our own personal happiness?
We are our looking for ways of promoting our individual survival. We pool together resources to aid in this goal on a selfish level. Its living for others or living for yourself. Which is to be chosen? One taken to an extreme leads to thriving and self fulfilment, the other leads to crucifixtion and cannibalism. I choose selfish fulfilment. Not through the domination of others, but through cooperation and mutual exchange.
*I think you are right.
This seems to be the case.
*I think you are wrong.
Does this mean that you want humanity to go back into living in little communes? Or perhaps would rather we adopt a guild system? Incidentally the unabomber also felt that we should go back to before the industrial revolution. Isnt it a little striking when you think about it that whenever people commit
vincent
user 8236565
Kannapolis, NC
Post #: 24
I just lost a major post here. I have studying to do. I will return to this later. I'm wasting time right now. I have much more to say, a lot I replied to but this freaking computer just lost it!!
Bill Van F.
wvanfleet
Group Organizer
Charlotte, NC
Post #: 1,437
Suggestion: Compose in a Word document (or some other text document), and then copy and paste into the message board. If something goes wrong, you still have it in your computer. I think that's always a good idea.
Bill Van F.
wvanfleet
Group Organizer
Charlotte, NC
Post #: 1,438
Vincent,
Do children owe anything to society? Do they have any obligation to contribute to the functioning of the family? Do you have any obligation to your children? Do you have any obligation to become educated? To become self-suppporting? To take care of yourself and avoid expensive illness?
This statement mixes true obligations with non obligations and treats them the same. We must understand what an obligation is. An obligation is owed to someone on whom your life has depended on by their concious care (your parents), or on someone who will die without your care (your children), or upon debts incurred due to an agreed upon transaction. (Paying someone back money you owe someone) No one owes anything to a society.
Why not? Without Society we would not be here. Without Society we die.
So to answer this question: No, children owe absolutely nothing to society or to anyone. They are not really old enough to take on responsibilites such as debt, they are not relying to society for survival (this is done by the parents,
The parents are a part of Society, and represent Society to the child, right?
not by society. Even if the argument were made that they lived because of what society does for them, it must be remembered that "Society" doesnt do anything. Society is a collection of individuals living together.
Okay, that is what I have meant by Society when I have used the term. How does that change anything?
Everything society provides it does not provide to anyone's children, only to other individuals)
Are not children individuals?
When a child reaches the age of reason, then perhaps he may owe something to the family unit.
When does the child learn to reason? Suddenly at 18?
Once the child reaches the age whereby he can function with some form of self reliance and he is given anything by the parents, then yes he may owe something back depending on the situation.
Used to be that at age 12 the child would leave the farm and go work in the city.
However, not in cases where he or she have bad parents.
So it is a binary choice? Parents can be divided into two groups, good parents and bad parents, right? And the child decides to which group his parents belong? Or is it settled in court?
In that case parents can do far more harm then good. So it would depend. Yes parents are obligated to their children, to not care for them and to let them die is to commit murder. You do not have an obligation to become educated. You have every right to skip getting an education.
Wow!
You have every right to make nothing of yourself.
And therefore have to be taken care of by others?
If you are self supporting you owe nothing to anyone because you are "self" supporting. If you arent then you must owe someone who would be whoever it is that is supporting you. Once again you owe it to no one to take care of yourself. You can become ill due to neglect or fat due to overeating, it is perfectly fine if its your choice. This is not a statement that pertains to owing anyone anything.
And you will pay my medical bills?

So what you do has no effect on the happiness of others? Or it does, but that doesn’t matter?
What you do can have plenty of effect on the happiness of others. However, no actions you lead your life by should have others as the end in view.
But why not?
Actions should be self centered, even helping others should be done because it provides self satisfaction.
Yes, it provides self-satisfaction to know that I am of help to others and doing my part to make the world a better place.
To let others conditions and not your own dictate your actions is to not live as an individual, but to sacrifice your life to be a cog in a machine, or a number in a system, or something else just as vague as "system' or "machine" because to have any end view in mind other then self satisfaction is to lose your life for what will probably be some sub standard group.
But why do you say that? What is the evidence? What is the reasoning?
The majority of people are substandard when compared with the innovaters of history.
Sure! 99% of people are not as good as the 1% that are best. But what difference does that make?

Which is what?
The "survival axiom" (which I made up just for that message by the way) is the idea that all lifes actions all should boil down to the ability to survive over all else. All manners, ethics, customs, and traditions would completely erode if your or my lives were on the line.
I don’t understand.
The instinct for survival trumps all.
I am not aware that there is such an instinct. Animals do have instincts, and most of these instincts, perhaps all, were acquired because they led to survival. But that does not mean there is an instinct for survival. What would such a term mean? We could imagine an animal (human or otherwise) that had a particular instinct which in one environment leads to survival and in another environment leads to non-survival. So is that instinct the instinct to survive? Only humans, probably, know about “survival,” and we acquired our instincts prior to such knowledge.
It is this current condition of humanity, where hedonism has trumped survival instinct, that I think has led to suicidal tendencies in humans. Perhaps its just the lymbic system. This is my thought process concernnig that matter, I might very well be wrong. I am always opened to being corrected.
You may be right, but actually I don’t understand what you mean yet.
However, if society were placed into a life or death situation, all we consider to be the glue of our culture would come undone and we would kill one another to survive.
I’m not sure about this.
Altruism leads to people killing themselves ultimately, survival when pushed to extremes leads to people killing each other. If it came right down to it, I'd rather be murdered then commit suicide.
To each his own. In my mind it would have to do with which would lead to the greater good.

(Continued in next post)
Bill Van F.
wvanfleet
Group Organizer
Charlotte, NC
Post #: 1,439
(Continued from previous post)

Is it possible that you don’t know how much help you have received? Do you have a single example?
Of course its possible. An example of what? I consider help to have been given on a case by case basis, its never give by society.
I think we vote on programs to help the disadvantaged.

But without the help of others, you would be dead!
I disagree. I am upset you think me so incompetent that I have to depend that much on others.
And I think that you have not yet realized that there is nothing you can have and nothing you can do (beyond the exceedingly trivial) that does not require others having done their part.

Your parents and teachers never did anything for you? I have provided the CPDG for you and others.
My parents have. My teachers have. My parents from love, my teachers for money. If it wouldnt have been me they helped, it would have been someone else in my place. It wasnt done for me.
Strange idea, it seems to me. They didn’t do it for you; they did it for someone else, but you got the benefit? How can that be?
Lets assess things based off of causes of behavior, not from circumstances.
I don’t understand.

How did the word “owe” get into the discussion?
Because you used the phrase "give something back". This illustrates that I would be giving something back to someone for something. That means I owe someone or something for one thing or another.
Sort of like if someone gives you a Christmas present, then you owe them something in return, right?

They know that other people exist, and there are some of us who want to do our part to make the world a better place for others, even if we don’t know them personally. Are you unable to be concerned about the enormous suffering that is going on in our world, among people you don’t know personally, and if you have the ability to do something about that suffering, would you have no motivation to do so?
I want everyone to do well. I am powerless to help those suffering people.
Every little bit of effort to make the world a better place has a fair chance of helping to do so.
If I could rely on magic, I would fix this problem so that everyone had the basic neccessities. No more or less!!
Why no more?
If you want to make the world a better place for others that is great and admirable. If you live only to make the world a better place for others, if that is the end in all your actions, that is quite deplorable.
Why?

Would you prefer to live in a society in which everyone cared about the welfare and happiness of everyone, or in one in which no one cared about the welfare and happiness of anyone else?
How could anyone imagine a society which opperated at either extreme?
Okay, most people vs very few people?
Both would probably lead to destruction in one way or another. That is if we use our imagination really well to imagine this very unimaginable situation.
But I don’t understand how the destruction would occur.

You don’t think that we humans are looking for ways to promote our survival and ways to have better lives? You don’t believe we have division of labor, taking of roles, cooperation, dedication to goals outside of and in addition to our own personal happiness?
We are our looking for ways of promoting our individual survival. We pool together resources to aid in this goal on a selfish level. Its living for others or living for yourself. Which is to be chosen? One taken to an extreme leads to thriving and self fulfilment, the other leads to crucifixtion and cannibalism. I choose selfish fulfilment. Not through the domination of others, but through cooperation and mutual exchange.
Do you feel an obligation to engage in that cooperation and mutual exchange? Why would you do it?

I think you are right.
This seems to be the case.
I think you are wrong.
Does this mean that you want humanity to go back into living in little communes? Or perhaps would rather we adopt a guild system? Incidentally the unabomber also felt that we should go back to before the industrial revolution. Isnt it a little striking when you think about it that whenever people commit
(Remainder missing.)
No, I want our species to undergo the third exponential change and become very different than it always has been so far. I am talking about going forward, not back. Do you want to be one of those who help us to move forward or who cause us to go or remain backward. Which people are more likely to help us move forward, those who try or those who don’t? I want to be a humanoblast, not a humanoclast. What about you?
vincent
user 8236565
Kannapolis, NC
Post #: 26
Once again I have to get to a freaking college class in a moment. I will expound on my views probably later tonight when I get back. I'm in kind of a funk tonight. Sort of a restless bundled up state of mind. These types of moods hit me every once and a while and I just dont feel like doing much of anything. Yet these are just the sort of times where I need to keep my mind on something. I didnt get to finish the post from the other night, but you have left me a whole lot to expand on here. i should be sitting at this computer in a couple of hours again. If you happen to check this message board one more time before I get back do me one favor. Tell me the definition of the word altruism. That is the center of this worlds problems. The quickest way to understand where it is I am coming from is to understand my hatred and opposition to altruistic philosophies. I dont hate the altruists understand, only that philosophical viewpoint. The different altruistic and destructive movements and attitides that I feel are out there include faith based religions, patriotism, liberalism, green party politics, and environmentalism. Having said this briefly I'm sure that you can tell that there is little that I agee with which is shared by the majority of "society". And on top of all else, how do you define that word and how can a society be behind any action as a society.
vincent
user 8236565
Kannapolis, NC
Post #: 28
*Why not? Without Society we would not be here. Without Society we die.
The reaosn we dont is that we couldnt possible owe something to an entity which does nothing for us in any purposeful way. Society didn't "give" you anything, you obtain benefits from society by circumstances you were born into. Society is not keeping you alive. Society does not care if you live or die. If you die right now society would keep on going. Society doesnt care about individuals, society is indifferent. Without trees we wouldnt have oxygen. However, I dont feel that I owe trees anything. Without the sun I wouldnt have warmth and couldnt not live. I dont owe the son anything either. What makes society different then the trees, the sun, all the animals I eat to gain nutrients, my liver, or my lungs. I dont owe my lungs anything. They simply do what they do. I'm fortunate that they do, however, I dont owe them anything. You cant owe a vague construct like society anything. Society has done nothing "for" you, you have benefited from society by being fortunate, not because society cares.
*The parents are a part of Society, and represent Society to the child, right?
I would say that parents are a part of society, I am not sure I would agree that they represent society to the child. What if they were raising the child in a cult. That most certainly wouldnt reflect society. I think that just sort of depends on the individual circumstances.
*Okay, that is what I have meant by Society when I have used the term. How does that change anything?
It changes things because the individuals in society do not act in concert. They have different goals from each other. Society is nothing more then a label for a group of people that live in an approxiamte location on the globe. Its a fuzzy concept. However, no one should really take to seriously concepts which state "society does....." because these people are not acting together. Only segments of society try to achieve results through causes.
*Are not children individuals?\
Yes.
*When does the child learn to reason? Suddenly at 18?
That would depend on the child. Arent you a former psychiatrist? You would have a better answer to that question then me. I didnt mean a concrete age that was universal, but a child becomes responsible for actions when he becomes able to reason for himself.
*Used to be that at age 12 the child would leave the farm and go work in the city.
I dont quite see the connection between this statement and what it is I'm saying. I guess that would be custom for that time>? That is not the same as owing someone something.
*So it is a binary choice? Parents can be divided into two groups, good parents and bad parents, right? And the child decides to which group his parents belong? Or is it settled in court?
I think it would be in cases where the parents were more destructive then they were constructive to the child. I have a hard time imagining a child being morally expected to admire a father who beat him or a mother who locked him away. Even if they did provide for the child, in cases of child abuse or neglect I have a hard time believing that the child could owe such a person anything. As far as settling this goes, I'm speaking idealistically and morally. These are principals I'm laying down. I'm not stating what is, but idealistically how it should be.
*Wow!
You have self ownership. You have every right to skip getting an education if that is your choice. A man can commit himself to being a total zero in life if that is his wish, however, he is immoral if he is doing it by leeching off of someone else. If he finds a way to survive and contribute nothing, that is perfectly fine.
*And therefore have to be taken care of by others?
Absolutely NOT!! You should only be taken care of by others if they choose to help you. In that case its fine. You have no right to take from people and live off of them.
*And you will pay my medical bills?
No. You will pay your medical bills. Or you will get sick and die. That is your responsibility. A persons health is their own problem. You own your own body. You are responsible for the ill health you have as long as its due to your own neglect.
*But why not?
Because it is deeply immoral to place another persons life as the end of your own. You must reduce yourself to a zero if you put someone else FIRST. However, life is not a zero sum game. People can help one another and both people benefit from the activity. It gives people a great deal of happiness helping others often, and if it leads to this type of satisfaction it is perfectly fine and moral. However, I will illustrate the difference by telling what a friend of mine did not too long ago. He saw a homeless hungry man along the side of the road and stopped to give him his lunch. Then my friend sat in class hungry. This is a good illustration. Helping others is fine, but not to the point where it is detrimental to yourself. This is what altruist attitudes lead to. You end up being eaten up by less decent people then yourself. There should never be a cost which outweighs the benefit for you. This is what I mean when I say rationally selfish. Selfishness is good as long as its rational and geared towards the long term. It cannot be irrational and whimsical. Drug use is selfish, however it is whimsical and irrationl (often times) and this leads to people being self destructive. People should lead rationally selfish lives. Altruism leads to self destruction. The altruist becomes eaten by cannibals. Altruist creeds abound in statements like, "Turn the other cheek", "Take up your cross and follow me." "Happiness comes from making other people happy." Jesus was the ultimate altruist. He is a good illustration. He was crucified. He is eaten in the eucharist. I am not trying to be offensive. I am illustrating my point. It is this type of philosophical outlook that is the reason the world is often in shambles. Nothing should ever come before your self or your ability to rationally reason things through. Not God, the environment, government, society, your friends.....nothing. I havent got one friend I love MORE then I love myself. I have one friend in particular who I love deeply....in a selfish manner. Its honest. I talk to her because it gives me pleasure, not because I feel that I should or because I'm obligated to. She is the same with me. That makes the friendship that much richer because it is honest. There are absolutely no obligations.
*Yes, it provides self-satisfaction to know that I am of help to others and doing my part to make the world a better place.
This is good.
*But why do you say that? What is the evidence? What is the reasoning?
As I said either you live life selfishly, or you give it up to some bigger cause. This group then becomes more important then your own self interests. You are consumed by this cause if it becomes bigger then yourself. and then you lose valuable time you might spend improving your own condition on this planet for whatever this higher cause might be. Whenever you give up even a little bit of your identity to a group you lose a little bit of your individuality. Give your "survival" prorogative over to the group, and you become a suicidal punching bag. A lamb to be slaughtered. You become that cause or that groups victim. Greater causes always cause destruction. Terrorists love greater causes, as do politicians, cult lea
vincent
user 8236565
Kannapolis, NC
Post #: 29
The evidence to and reasoning to back up this statement is quite simplistic. Individuals are greater then groups and all real progress comes from individuals. Groups impede progress if they get in the way of individuals. All advancements take place in individual minds and are then ennacted. No group comes up with an idea together all at the same time. If a revolutionary idea comes around, you can pretty much bet it came from the cranium of the sole person who stood outside of the safety of the group.
*Sure! 99% of people are not as good as the 1% that are best. But what difference does that make?
As I just stated. Its like the late George Carlin once stated in one of his stand up comedy specials when talking about children. "Kids are like any other group of people. A few winners, A WHOLE LOT OF LOSERS." When blood clots in the body it ruins circulation. People are much the same way. Especially governmental groups. Any group resting on force, or faith based thinking. Faith and force get in the way of more progress then does anything else.
*I don’t understand.
C Elegans is a small worm with a very miniscule brain. It functions with no mind to speak of, simply using instinct. Based off of its sense of smell it will clump together into small groups when it senses danger is near, or it will go it alone if no danger is sensed. It has absolutely no awareness that it is doing this. Its need for survival is adhered to without any knowledge or self concsiousness whatsoever. This instinct for survival is in us as well. Even a suicidal person fights against urges which lay far underneith his self loathing. The man who hangs himself will still grasp at the rope once he's hanging. We have a need to survive. Our principals that we come up with have the aim of allowing us to survive efficienty. EVERYTHING IS SURVIVAL WHEN YOU LOOK DEEPLY ENOUGH!! Surviving is what all animals on this planet, what all living things on this planet, are geared towards doing. When your life is on the line your morals go away. Your morals are directly related to your ability to survive comfortably and efficiently for you to carry them out. Unless of course your an altruist and then your life doesnt matter and you live a philosophy meant to wipe out your existince and turn you into a victim of mediocre parasites. Altruism takes away the man and leaves in his place a sacraficial lamb.
* I am not aware that there is such an instinct. Animals do have instincts, and most of these instincts, perhaps all, were acquired because they led to survival. But that does not mean there is an instinct for survival. What would such a term mean? We could imagine an animal (human or otherwise) that had a particular instinct which in one environment leads to survival and in another environment leads to non-survival. So is that instinct the instinct to survive? Only humans, probably, know about “survival,” and we acquired our instincts prior to such knowledge.
That is true. Animals survive based off of their survival instinct. In humans instincts are overtaken by cognitive processes. Humans have an instinctual drive to reproduce. However, we temper our instinctual urges with conventions. Mankind is the only animal who does not use instinct to survive, even though he holds within him a survival instinct. Unicelled organisms have a survival instinct, man is a multicellular organism, and within the very structure of our cells themselves is the drive for continuation. However, mans primary tool which he alone uses for survival is reason. Instinct is not what guides man's survival, his means of reasoning is. Unless of course he is in a fight or flight/kill or be killed type of situation. In that case his inner instinctual drives take over.
You may be right, but actually I don’t understand what you mean yet.
Our nice big prefrontal cortex and limbic system has led to suicidal behavior. Our reasoning ability has led to suicidal tendencies. We ruminate and animals do not. Isnt it only whales aside from humans who commit suicide? And I think that in their case its for altruistic reasons. BIG SURPRISE!! :) An animal would never think to commit suicide, it would never occur to an animal of the lower orders. When reason trumped the survival instinct, it brought suicide along with it. We are trully interesting critters. Nothing in the world is like mankind. I really dont know where were heading. I hope I stay alive a long long time though, just to be able to watch where our species is headed.
*I’m not sure about this.
I promise. When Mao instituted The Great Leap forward and socialized aggriculture in China, people ate each others children because they were starving. Try chowing down on some random guy in the street just cause. The idea would be much more tempting if you hadnt eaten in a month and a half. Morals cave in under tremendous pressure.
* To each his own. In my mind it would have to do with which would lead to the greater good.
I would never commit suicide for the greater good. What happens after I die is totally irrelevent. Ultimately all experience ends when you die remember. So what in the world would you end all experience for? Even if it led to some type of greater good, you would never know it.
*I think we vote on programs to help the disadvantaged.
I think people vote away their own autonomy. It doesnt matter what we vote for. The decisions dont rest with us. The decisions rest with the people "voted on". We vote on people, these people do what they want with our money. We do not vote on programs. And why in the world would we. If we believe in just causes we should enact them. We shouldnt leave them up to someone else.
*And I think that you have not yet realized that there is nothing you can have and nothing you can do (beyond the exceedingly trivial) that does not require others having done their part.
You have it backwards. What others do is the extremely trivial. What I do for myself is the extremely important element here. Its my skills, knowledge and actions which lead to my success. If I dont apply these things I die!! Just as you said, but the other way around. Its man's individual ability to mold this planet into the image of his will that is the reason for mans survival. Its my, or any individual's, ability to make the unique with my own mind that is what carries along "society". Society would stagnate without individuals creating new innovations.
*Strange idea, it seems to me. They didn’t do it for you; they did it for someone else, but you got the benefit? How can that be?
They were performing the job itself for themselves in the first place. I have been personally helped by teachers yes, and because they cared, but its irrelevent. If its hadnt been that teacher it might have been another. If it hadnt been me as a student it might have been another student. They did the job in the first place because it gave them personal satisfaction. This works because for one person to benefit in an exchange it does not neccessarily mean that another person lost. Life is not a zero sum game, and your neighbors success bears nothing on your own success.
*I don’t understand.
I mean judge the intentions of individuals since they are the agents of actions. Not groups.
Sort of like if someone gives you a Christmas present, then you owe them something in return, right?
Not in the least. An exchange of Christmas presents is a face to face exchange between individuals. We are speaking of groups.
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