Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Questioning our Apathetic Selves

  1. Sep 12, 2004 #1
    I wrote these questions years ago, while i was seemingly trying to get some sort of grasp of my life. Some i have answered myself, others i still search the answer to. Sure i had a normal Americanized life, yet there seemed to be a fragment of it missing in an unknown world. I searched, and do so to this very day. I question our civilization's apathy, and surely even my own. Please feel free to share your opinion and answers to these questions. It will help my search as well as others'. (Some are not questions, rather just statements, please share your understanding and opinion of them. Please keep the format clean so i as well as others, can clearly understand which question/statment you are discussing.)

    In the words of Leo Tolstoy,
    "He comes to a clearing, climbs a tree, and clearly sees an unlimited space before him; at the same time he sees that there are no houses there, and that there can be none; he goes back to the forest, into the darkness, and he sees darkness, and again there are no houses."

    ----

    1.) At what point of our evolution did we become technology obedient savages?

    2.) Are we the creators of the culturally degrading factors in our global society, and thus our own moral decay? In other words, are we the cause of our own physical and metaphysical decay?

    3.) What causes us to become totally obedient to the contents of our own lives? At what point will our consciousness influence us to look outside the pleasure of our own life and see the misery of others?

    4.) Why don't adolescents in the contemporary era desire knowledge to reinforce their intellectual health? Why don't we feel the need for discovery and travel, and isolate ourselves from any exotic or unfamiliar information?

    5.) What has caused us to become inhumane creatures constantly at struggle for pleasure in our lives? Is shelter, love, unity, beauty, and our own inner goodness not enough to feed our hungry body and/or soul?

    6.) At what point has the word "mind" been isolated from the English (Americanized) tounge? Where has our conscience gone to?

    7.) Is technology ever going to surpass humanity? Has it? Is humanity ever going to surpass technology?

    8.) If this culturally-degrading trend continues, will our Einsteins, Newtons, and Mozarts ever going to reappear in another identity? Could these great minds ever surpass the oppression set upon them by our obedient population?

    9.) A great comic once portrays a person praying to God, "God, how come you have not sent solutions to cancer, genocide, and other sources of evil?" God willfully answers, "I have --you killed them."

    10.) Could the society-labeled insane be the anonymous and unrecognized geniuses of our world?

    11.) Why has society given religion, faith, and sacrament the title of hopeless factors which are the roots of conflicts in our society? Isn't religion supposed to be the root of all happiness, and thus the solution to all of these conflicts?

    12.) What is cause of isolation, depression, genocide, homophobia, society-influenced prejudice, cultural decay, chronic ignorance, insecurity, obedience to technology, and war?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 12, 2004 #2
    The moment one of our hair ancestors picked up a bone and smacked his buddy in the head with it. Or picked up a stick and poked it into an ant0nest. Or any such event.

    People generally take the path of least resistance. They do the easy thing. This sometimes goes against what they might consider right or good, but they do it anyway, because they want it all easy. Each individual is responsible for his or her moral state.

    Are you totally obedient to the contents of your life?

    Some do.

    We did not "become" such, suddenly. We've always been such.

    Are you asking us or yourself?

    They are one and the same. We have no claws, no armoured scales or shell. we can't jump like the flea, run like a cheetah, or chomp things apart like lions. Instead we have our minds, and the ability to manipulate the world around us extensively. Technology is our claw, our fang. It will continue to advance, unless we blow ourselves up, and it will continue being a part of us.

    What exactly is culturally degrading, given that cultures change? What is this trend you speak of?

    That's a little funny.

    Quite possibly.

    Because religious nutters keep persecuting people and starting wars.

    Who told you that?

    Weakness.
     
  4. Sep 12, 2004 #3
    Do you mean to say we were destined for this future? That we are just victims of its inevitable coming?

    However, I am not clear why human law allows us to do this. Shouldn't the mind be superior to mainstream culture that causes us to "do it anyway"? Has mainstream popular culture cast a shadow on our minds?

    I'm afraid i am. Yet it is hard for me to admit that i am the one responsible for my own present state. Human law allows us to have free will; if we have free will, shouldn't we be ignorant of such occurances? Once again, has mainstream culture overcome this phenomeon?

    Or, "Not enough do" ?

    We were not born such. We were all born potential saints, it is our free will that causes us to choose pleasure instead of goodness and truth.

    My mind is still in tact. I was wondering why many others aren't so fortunate.

    Do you mean to say that the Brave New World (Aldous Huxley) isn't possible -- because this technology is and always will be a portion of our own selves?
    I would disagree. Technology should not be a part of us. But i would on the other hand agree that it has become part of many. Do you truly believe this is good for society and well, humanity?

    I would rather say culture degrades instead of changes. Although I am not anti-american, i would agree that there is little culture evident there. America being the Empire of the world, that seems strange, no?

    Light sadism?

    Religios nutters are not the faithful and the believers; rather, they are the insane. Religion does not start wars, human free will does.

    If religion is the pursuit of trust, it is then the pursuit of the transendentals; if it is in fact that, then it is in search of goodness, beauty, etc. If that is not happiness, what is?

    Perfectly articulated answer.


    Thank you for your time and sharing of knowledge.
     
  5. Sep 12, 2004 #4
    No. I don't believe in destiny.

    Laws change at every border. They're mostly irrelevent. They only matter because we accept them.

    It seems to me mainstream culture in most places is loaded with concern for things that don't really matter. However, I don't think it's necessary to get rid of it all. Some of it is useful. There's no point objecting to something you like.

    *shrug*

    There's no reason why "good" and "truth", and "pleasure", need be mutually exclusive. Just pick the ones that work together without causing harm.

    Weakness. Lack of conscience is a lack of strength. People take the easy path, seek gratification of whatever desires they have, at the expense of others. Because it's easy.

    Never read it.

    Why?

    Absolutely. Without technology, we'd never have survived the rigours of natural selection. Eg: spears and axes for hunting and fending off the bit toothies.

    Well, there are upward and downward swings to societies. There are stages of growth and expansion, then stages of stagnation and decay.

    What makes your view of a mythology with no basis in reality any more valid that some nutter's view of a mythology with no basis in reality? They believe they are doing god's work, or fending off evil spirits, or whatever.

    Religion isn't the pursuit of trust. It probably started as the means by which ignorant people of the past explained natural phenomena, and it turned into a system by which leaders rule the weaker people who need an emotional crutch.

    Happiness is an ice cream on a hot day.
     
  6. Sep 12, 2004 #5
    Thank you Adam for expressing your opinions. I will further discuss this when i have time.
    By the way, "If religion is the pursuit of *truth*, it is .." (sp)

    Does anyone else have any input? Thanks.
     
  7. Sep 12, 2004 #6
    Additional questions:

    1.) What is the purpose and/or aim of our knowledge?

    2.) Why not kill yourself?

    3.) How should you live?


    Please feel free to share.
     
  8. Sep 12, 2004 #7
    1.) At what point of our evolution did we become technology obedient savages?

    When that technology started making some things easier to do.

    2.) Are we the creators of the culturally degrading factors in our global society, and thus our own moral decay? In other words, are we the cause of our own physical and metaphysical decay?

    Yes. But there is as least as much growth as there is decay.

    3.) What causes us to become totally obedient to the contents of our own lives? At what point will our consciousness influence us to look outside the pleasure of our own life and see the misery of others?

    Selfishness. Greed. Hypocrisy. But also the effort and time required to get clothing, food and shelter. That takes a lot out of you in today's increasingly competitive society.

    4.) Why don't adolescents in the contemporary era desire knowledge to reinforce their intellectual health?

    Adolescents are in that transitional stage in life when things are happening to their bodies, and the number one driving force in their minds is the desire to conform with their peers. Let's not be too harsh on them.

    Why don't we feel the need for discovery and travel, and isolate ourselves from any exotic or unfamiliar information?

    I'm sure many of us do desire to travel, but we simply don't have the time and money to do so. As for discovering new ideas, that takes a lot of brainpower, which most of us, like me, don't have. Also, most people are very social, and want to conform, and so they tend to live within the bounds of what society and marketing expects of them.

    5.) What has caused us to become inhumane creatures constantly at struggle for pleasure in our lives? Is shelter, love, unity, beauty, and our own inner goodness not enough to feed our hungry body and/or soul?

    A lot of people seek simple pleasures because there is so much pain in their lives, or sheer tedium. Just consider the monotony of a life where you spend 9 hours a day, 5 or 6 days a week, 48 weeks a year, and all of the most productive years of your life doing something that you don't particularly enjoy, just to put food on the table (for yourself and family), put a roof over your head, and rags on your back.

    6.) At what point has the word "mind" been isolated from the English (Americanized) tounge? Where has our conscience gone to?

    ?

    7.) Is technology ever going to surpass humanity? Has it?

    In some senses it has, in some senses it hasn't. The question is, when is technology going to alleviate us, all of us, from having to sacrifice the best of years our lives to wage-slavery? When is technology going to eliminate the major causes of physical suffering in our world? When it is technology going to slow down the aging process, so that we can have a greater amount of time to discover ourselves and the world around us before our bodies start giving up on us?

    Is humanity ever going to surpass technology?

    ?

    8.) If this culturally-degrading trend continues, will our Einsteins, Newtons, and Mozarts ever going to reappear in another identity? Could these great minds ever surpass the oppression set upon them by our obedient population?

    Einsteins and Newtons are being born at the same rate now as they were before. It's a myth that they aren't. And more of them in total are being born now because of our greater population. The problem is that the easiest problems have been solved, at least temporarily, by the actual Einsteins and Newtons, and the problems that remain are far more difficult. Trying to reconcile quantum theory and relativity theory into a complete theory of quantum gravity is far, far, more difficult than the task Einstein completed with his special and general theories of relativity. I don't get art, so I didn't mention Mozart.

    9.) A great comic once portrays a person praying to God, "God, how come you have not sent solutions to cancer, genocide, and other sources of evil?" God willfully answers, "I have --you killed them."

    Utter bollocks. Any omnipotent god that would allow innocent children (and adults) to go through the horrors of cancer and genocide and other forms of physical and mental suffering is a vile and evil god. Sure, we humans have many faults, but a god could teach us lessons or even punish us without allowing such awful suffering to fall upon us, especially those of us who are completely innocent (e.g. children, for f**k's sake!). Of course, the simpler assumption is that there are no gods, and it's up to us to improve the quality of life.

    10.) Could the society-labeled insane be the anonymous and unrecognized geniuses of our world?

    No, although definitions of insanity or what is and isn't mentally ill can be wrong, and are always being refined as we learn more the human mind.

    11.) Why has society given religion, faith, and sacrament the title of hopeless factors which are the roots of conflicts in our society?

    I don't think it has. Religion is still strong and still a pillar in most societies of the world. Some people blame religion, but they are in the minority.

    Isn't religion supposed to be the root of all happiness, and thus the solution to all of these conflicts?

    No.

    12.) What is cause of isolation, depression, genocide, homophobia, society-influenced prejudice, cultural decay, chronic ignorance, insecurity, obedience to technology, and war?

    Lots of things. Nature itself and the nature of humans. A small but sizeable minority of humans, the bullies, tend to cause a lot of our problems. And the rest of us tend to follow too much, like horses in a herd follow the dominant horse. We are easily swayed into various mindsets and beliefs that can get us into trouble.

    1.) What is the purpose and/or aim of our knowledge?

    I don't know. Maybe there is no purpose. We just have a curiosity of how things work and want to find out about them.

    2.) Why not kill yourself?

    Good question. But a personal question, the answer to which must be tailored to each individual. The only advice I would give is, give yourself a lot of time to answer this question, because the answer you ultimately find may be a very good one, and you don't want to kill yourself for the wrong reasons.

    3.) How should you live?

    Again, good question, and again, it's up to the individual. But there's lots of advice around, so it's worth reading up about it. Talk to old people.
     
  9. Sep 12, 2004 #8
    All things are caused by one thing and one thing alone. When you understand this the universe unfolds into infinity in a single moment. Find that one thing and you will not be plagued by why. God has other plagues when you are ready for them. Nothing is free, all life is paid in full. There is no escaping the cashier. Do you think you can step outside of yourself?
     
  10. Sep 12, 2004 #9
    Thanks again for all of your input.

    Tenyears, i think your statement is extremely valid, and extremely powerful. Thank you.
     
  11. Sep 12, 2004 #10
    TENYEARS: Could this one thing be in fact God himself? Perhaps if i understand faith i will understand God as well, and in turn, my whole existance. I strongly suggest you reply to my newer thread at https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=42838 , if you have not read the piece, i suggest you do; you seem knowledgable enough, yet i think this will interest you even more.
     
  12. Sep 12, 2004 #11
    Why talk of "does X = god?" when nobody knows if such creatures (gods) exist at all? Why expend so much effort on myths? How about instead asking "does X = me?" or "what is truly important?"...?
     
  13. Sep 13, 2004 #12
    dekoi

    your post has an angry or frustrated tone. if i am wrong, please forgive me in advance.

    that said, let me state that i come from the timeless universe, freewill, reincarnation school of thought.

    today you live in very technical world. technology, unto itself, is neither good nor bad. since you are here in this world at this time, there must be a reason. afterall, you do enjoy the benefits of all these advances, posting to internat, etc.. My point, don't fight it, work with it. ooooooommmmmm! (zen)

    if we didn't create the current world situation, who did? i believe we did and part of our role in society is to speak out and work toward changing the things we don't like. whatever decay you see, is of our own doing. whatever good you see, is of our doing. it is our world to accept, enjoy and improve.

    we must be obedient to ourselves as respects QUALITY not quantity. once we assume 'contents' (things, toys) define us, we are dead. 'content', inner integrity is the most important. once we are true to ourself, we will enjoy our pleasures, without guilt, while working toward a better world.

    we all fear the unknown, let's not come down too hard on the adolescents. hell, the older generations don't like change either.

    human pleasures, IMHO, are not bad. they help us understand our role in nature, and, ultimately, our role in the universe.

    we are using technology, at this point in time, to accomplish the same goal. as human life gets more complicated, we learn to handle more complicated matters on the spiritual, universal level. we are more than just human, technology may surpass humans, (who cares), but in cannot surpass our total being.

    all the things you list about what is wrong with society, do exist. BUT, they are not the only things. if you dwell on the negative, you will only see and advance the negative. i do not believe that this is a healthy way to view the world. personally, i prefer to focus on what is positive while acknowledging the negative that i work toward changing. yes, this can sound pollyanna-ish, but this shift in perspective is enpowering. while seeing the problems, i understand that we do have the ability to improve the world. if we created the problems you see, then we can undo them. (freewill, god didn't impose these problems)

    once again, i believe that we chose to be here at this time (for this life) because of our broader spiritual goal. in past and future lives, we (chonologically) created the 'mess' and will enjoy the correction. this is our moment of change, for the individual and all humanity. it is always that moment. what future do you want?

    god ain't dead, s/he/it just isn't who/what we thought s/he/it was. change you view of god and your role in the world and you might see a world that is moving toward your ideal.

    love&peace,
    olde drunk
     
  14. Sep 13, 2004 #13
    thank you odle drunk for participating.

    I am not angry, but i am surely frustrated. frustrated at my confusion and frustrated due to the apathy of others and their sadistic selves.

    Thank you again.

    I hope more people can participate, especially in accordance to the question, "Why not kill yourself? " Could someone give me an atheistic view as well as a Christian one? Would be interested in some of your opinions.
     
  15. Sep 13, 2004 #14
    We all take the path of least resistance in life and in death. Sometimes that path may be to kill oneself because the pain of living may be to great. This is not a choice and yet it is. We can only hope most will gut it out and live through it for in the end the metal is made more pure and ready for it's real purpose. For in the end it is not an instrument of war, when pure and pounded under the presure, it become a reflection into existence and that is when we understand what is and our purpose in life.
     
  16. Sep 14, 2004 #15
    why bother???? regardless of your particular religious leaning, you will only kill your body. If an atheist you will not continue to 'be'. If you believe in an after life, what will you gain by terminating this experience??

    as a reincarnationist, i know that i will have as many lives as i chose to understand who "I" am and what "I" am doing.

    reguarless of all religious ideas, i believe that it is against nature to end a life. guess i failed to include that i have also become a pacifist.

    so, as a believer in a timeless universe, freewill, reincarnation and peace, violence upon anyone or anything has a form of karma. NO, there is no right or wrong in the broad scheme of things, but if i inflict pain or suffering, i will need to undo the misdeed in this or another life. In effect, harming another is harming myself. we are all one, working toward a ??? singularity??

    i dunno! but, from what i have learned from investigation, observation and experience, those that accept violence, live in a violent world; those that lie, cheat and steal live in THAT world.
    Meaning: if you are a member of a gang or army, you will live in and with violence. if you climb the corporate ladder of an unethical company, you will get what you dish out.

    hey - if you look for the good in man - you will be happier. I did not say ignore the negative. Believe in yourself and your ideals AND that you can make a change in the world. my olde signature included the quote "the butterfly effect is real, flap your wings".

    we are NOT powerless!

    love&peace,
    olde drunk
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?



Similar Discussions: Questioning our Apathetic Selves
  1. This is our title. (Replies: 1)

  2. Our Desires (Replies: 7)

  3. Our opinions (Replies: 43)

Loading...