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Human Life Hopeless?

  1. Mar 20, 2007 #1
    Human Life.... Hopeless?

    Social morals for me are like driftwood being carried in from generation to generation - always changing positions, because it lacks the ability to control itself - like most humans I meet these days.

    I firmly believe that you should treat others the way you want to be treated, this golden rule should be the one and only law for the whole planet - It comes down to being considerate and honest with yourself and humans around you. It is obvious that people with great power exert a social moral standard. But those people that listen lack the critical thought process that propels them to QUESTION things!!!! A President rallies people up in the name of patriotism for war and people will just go with it like dead driftwood. Would you like a bomb dropped in your kitchen? I don't think so...

    The notion of good and evil dissipates when people really understand human life.
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 20, 2007 #2
    As long as there are good people in the world, it will never be hopeless
  4. Mar 20, 2007 #3
    So if I'm a masochist I should inflict physical pain upon people.
  5. Mar 20, 2007 #4
    i was brought up with two, do on to others and the reality of he who has the gold rules. i never did belive in good and evil because i've seen both through the looking glass but i do belive that if you don't have some sence of moral responsibility then something has to give and it will. life isn't hopeless although it can feel like that at some points in life.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  6. Mar 20, 2007 #5


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    People have been making evil out of good for so long I think its about time to turn it around some. Like when they give you lemons; make lemon meringue pie. Since evil and good are generally considered forms of the neutrality of energy, the transformation of evil into good is not that hard to achieve.

    What must also be noted is that even evil relies on good air, good water, good service and good everything to survive. It cannot afford to let itself (evil) corrupt those services. This would be out of fear of its very own demise, and what may very well be considered evil's own fall from grace into the pits of..... extra-evilness:devil: :confused: . So, cheer up.
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  7. Mar 20, 2007 #6
    If you are into sadism and masochism and you can practice it with fellow sadists and masochists than that is fine... that is a peculiar argument, that clearly is not emboddied through out the majority as it points to chemical imbalance.

    My point is that good and evil goes away when you level yourself and everything around you as equal. Imagine how this translates into religion, politics, cultures... almost everything negative in this world is propelled by the pride of being different. I am very happy with my life because I don't depend on anyone to do my critical thinking, after all that is the only thing I'm aware of. However I am saddened to see the opposite in many people.
    I don't know what it feels like to be Canadian or European, liberal or Buddhist... these things should be completely irrelevant in anyones life - just be human and everything will fall into place. Mankind is doomed unless it gets a major face lift and it wont be due to any particular religion, political system, or country. If you read or listen to Richard Dawkins, he is a good example of what I am partially conveying.
  8. Mar 21, 2007 #7


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    Exactly my point as well. Both "good" and "evil" spring from the neutrality of energy.

    Good point. Its about "us agin them". But there's no denying that both us and them need certain basic and universal conditions to survive. This the the common ground we need to identify for each other and realise as perhaps a starting point where individuals merge to take the "whole" of human kind to a more co-operative and thus, progressive level.

    How the heck can someone do critical thinking for you? I suppose there are teachers who teach the method of critical thinking but, isn't that self directed once a method is assimilated?

    "Human'' is a label as well. Imagine if people just made being alive relevant and shared the responsibility with everything else that lives. Then things would fall into place as you say.

    And there's no guarantee that will stop the doom and damnation. Whatever happens will happen in the interest of nature. That's how nature works according to my observations.
  9. Mar 21, 2007 #8
    I agree with you, what I should have said is that some people lack the ability to do their own critical thinking, they are told that something is done a certain way and they agree without question - this includes questioning fundamental blocks of any given society. On a side note, its a lot like a child obeying the parents without questions, which in my perspective is child abuse - get over the fact that you dominate the child in stature and give explanations.

    During a particular time of year my mother cooked pork or something, and she use to always cut off the end pieces, so I asked her why she did that and she replied that is how her mom taught her. We asked my grandmother and she didn't know either and then we called my great grandmother and she finally told us that she use to cut the ends off because her pot was to small. hahaha

    By human I mean just being...

    You are right, but it would definitely help the current situation don't you agree? Humans are part of nature, and obviously exert a great deal of influence in it. There is a difference between inevitable forces in nature that act without regard so to speak, and man influencing the course of forces - probability varies with interaction... humans in particular have a lot of potential in interacting with this planet.
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2007
  10. Mar 21, 2007 #9


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    I see what you're saying. You're saying that critical thinking needs to be encouraged. I don't think "critical" is the right term though, its more like "investigative thinking". "Critical thinking" has a negative connotation that comes with it. Questioning everything that is done and said can be seen as being critical but in the case of a child its more investigative and educational. Were it to be practiced by most adults we wouldn't be in a lot of messes we're in right now. Or, in the least, it would bring out the real intentions of those authorities who come up with apparently fabricated excuses for committing atrocities.

    Ha! Its cool you could do the geneology of the reason to cut something before it goes into a pot. That is cool investigative work. Its really enlightening when you realize the simple reasons that bring about something you discover or question.

    A good start would be to educate every person on the planet about the small but intrinsic part they play in the larger role of the environment. For now the majority of mindsets on the planet have no idea what the environment is. They just see water, air and parts of the land as free-for-all garbage dumps. Somehow there is still the notion that "what I do has no effect as long as it doesn't effect me". What is not taught or learned is that every action we take effects not only us but everything else.

    Still, as I say, if nature requires us to be around we'll be around. Its nature's balancing act and we're either dead weight or live bait. It depends on our attitude and actions.
  11. Mar 21, 2007 #10
    You see, the two comments in different colors are the difference between a philosophy of life that holds "human life is hopeless" (the first color in red) and a philosophy of life that holds "human life is hopefull" (the second color in blue). Good for you that you follow the path of life full of absolute hope.
  12. Mar 21, 2007 #11
    up to a point, sometimes it turns into lord of the flies :eek:
  13. Mar 22, 2007 #12
    whats wrong with that?:tongue:
  14. Mar 22, 2007 #13
    as long as your not one of the flies :rolleyes:
  15. Mar 22, 2007 #14
    To Paul_Peciak. The point you are making has a deep, sorrowful beauty. So many people dislike themselves, and treat others accordingly. Conversely, those who do like who they are treat others accordingly. As Rade pointed out in his excellent post (#10), you have answered your own question - there is hope, you have displayed it.
    Let's exchange the words 'good' and 'evil' for Wisdom (clarity) and Ignorance (non-clarity). Genuine wisdom sees beyond 'social morals' and other influences such as family, peers, tradition, culture, science, religion, politics, philosophy etc. - these things should guide us but not 'own' us (that would be Ignorance).
    I think we are growing (ie: generally moving towards wisdom and away from ignorance), but, as they say "it's always darkest before the dawn", and I think "the darkest" is yet to come.
    And I'm an optimist! :bugeye:
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2007
  16. Mar 22, 2007 #15


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    Your reference is regarding the book "Lord of the Flies". The book was about a group of private school kids being stranded on an island. They practiced the one-up-man-ship and hierarchial social ordering they learned at private school from teachers who themselves had probably been through a similar process. Like begets like. Its tempting to assume their behavior was innate or natural in some way but, look at where they are from and their influences.

    This sort of assimilation of values is also evident in the surviving natives who had been forced to attend residential schools in North America. Kids as young as 3 and 5 were removed from their families "to be civilized" at these religious residential schools. Once there they were sexually, physically and psychologically abused by priests and nuns and others.

    Then they were released back into their societies where they practiced what they were taught as children by the degenerates who raised them.

    The generations witnessing the former residential school inmates only saw the immediate behavior of the natives and concluded that natives were a savage bunch of drinking, raping and fighting primitives. What they couldn't see at the time was where the native had been conditioned and trained and behaviorally modified in such a manner as to act in an anti-social, careless and reckless manner.

    (edit) this just shows my point that any action a person makes (especially influencial teachers and leaders) can have such far reaching impacts that the actual source of the impact can be obscured by those immediate behaviors unless consciously sought out. For example look at Paul's story about cutting the meat for the pot.
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2007
  17. Mar 22, 2007 #16


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    So..... if we cut all uncooperative people out of society, the rest will get along fine on the golden rule alone? Or in other words, evil goes away if you cut it out of society? Isn't that just a tad unrealistic/tautological?

    Even setting that aside, reasonable people can and do want different things. The golden rule simply cannot reconcile (for example) my desire for electricity with an environmentalist's desire for conservation.
    The Lord of the Flies is a demonstration (a thought experiment) of the fact that in reality, trying to govern society by the golden rule alone doesn't work. There is no point in debating about if people were homogenous how it would work, people aren't, so it doesn't. This, btw, is also the reason high purity communism/socialism don't work.
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2007
  18. Mar 22, 2007 #17


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    Wow, I've never heard that interpretation before. I don't think it is correct. Conventional wisdom would hold that the most educated/cultured should be the most civilized, so the point of the book is that anyone, even the so-called 'upper-crust' will devolve into their animal instincts without a proper social structure in place. No basis is provided in the book for comparing how these kids acted with how other kids might have acted, so I don't think you can claim these kids acted worse than others would have. It also has nothing to do with abusive Catholic priests, which kinda contradicts what you said above anyway: abuse is abuse and has nothing to do with culture. There is no reason to assume that the kids in the book were raped by sadistic priests prior to going to the island...

    There are hosts of symbols and sub-discussions going on in the book, but this is what I'm talking about:
    Moral and political philosophy combine in Hobbes and Locke, and the fact that their society failed is a demonstration of Hobbes' theory on the state of nature: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_of_nature

    Anyway, this theory (the prevailing one about the book) has been largely proven via phsychological experiments. I read about a recent one about the conduct of prison guards in an unstructured environment (studying the 'abu graib effect'). It took college kids and selected some to be prisoners and some to be guards in a mock-prison and gave the guards no rules for conduct. The experiment had to be terminated after just a few days due to the horrific mistreatment of the prisoners by the guards. http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2007-03-13-zimbardo-evil_n.htm
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2007
  19. Mar 22, 2007 #18
    Well done to Russ and Baywax for rushing to the "mind of the matter" (Re:Post#14). The funny thing about reality is that what you "see" you "are". (it was either me or Spike Milligan who said that, I'm not sure)
  20. Mar 22, 2007 #19


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    My take on the behavior of the children in the Lord of the Flies is based on observing the behavior of children from all walks of life in day care settings. The ones that have observed cooperative behavior demonstrated between primary care givers (like parents) were cooerative with their peers. The ones that observe and immitate the cynical and abusive behavior of their parents and syblings demonstrated aggressive, abusive behavior in the day care to get attention and survive, socially.

    If the children on the island in Lord of the Flies had all come from parenting/teaching styles that included cooperative and mutual respect for every person, the book would have been extremely boring with the children working together toward a common survival in their adopted "paradise".

    The difference is that one or two larger and more aggressive kids dominated the rest and they all followed suit in order to survive by belonging to the ruling camp. This sort of identification with the aggressor is demonstrated in day cares right on through to politics. It was first documented in Nazi concentration camps by Nazi psychologists.


    "People do things like that in extremis" is not a full explaination of the behavior of the "Kapos". If it were possible to examine their upbringing and the behavior of their most important role models this, in my opinion, would expose some of the reasoning behind their quick descent into the use of an aggressive and sadistic coping mechanism that was used to "ward off the(ir) awful awareness of their own vulnerability".
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2007
  21. Mar 24, 2007 #20

    Russ, if you read carefully you will notice that I'm actually NOT cutting anyone out, everyone is equal in life ,meaning they have a pulse. Why do you separate people? giving people high status within social brackets has no advantage, its a means of control for an ignorant purpose - humans do not need to be controlled, they need to be mindful and free. This is such a beautifully simple concept, and I have no idea why people complicate it with pride and ignorance.

    What the hell is it your business if two masochists are having a fun time with each other? If masochists leveled themselves with everyone else then there would be no reason to inflict pain into others, as they would also not want something done to them they did not desire.

    An environmentalist would only suggest green alternative energy - be mindful of not only yourself and people but of the place you and the rest of the world live in.

    I don't know what you are talking about? there is a lot of homogeneity within humans. You think you are the only proud american?
    Russ you have a very tunneled vision, open your eyes and ask yourself why?
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