Are human beings insecure?

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Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#1  Postby Woodart » May 11th, 2017, 6:07 pm

Are human beings insecure?

I think we are insecure, in just about everything – our clothes, our jobs, our intellect, our sex lives, spouses, money, status, you name it. Do you know anyone who is not? Maybe a psychopath, but even those people seem insecure about being found out – caught. Well, if this premise is true – why are we insecure?

First, look at our bodies – it is really fragile. We are a bag of water, walking around on sticks; composed of trillions of alien organisms, which we have to make agreements with – so we don’t kill each other. And to make matters worse – just one of these trillions can kill us. Now, is that a very secure and happy deal? No, it is not! Biologically speaking it is like we are walking a “tightrope”. We start out helpless as babies and pretty much end up the same way when we are old. In between we exercise and eat right in an attempt to avoid the innumerable crevasses that we can fall into – cancer – obesity – broken bones – neurological disorders – mental illness – and on and on. Luckily we have alcohol and heroin; so we don’t have to think of these pitfalls all the time.

Are we intellectually secure? I don’t think so. Why are we here in a philosophy forum? I know I am here because I am a eminently benevolent creature and I just want to share my vast wisdom with you poor slobs. I mean really, we are here to learn something, advance our thinking – get a handle on things. I want to refine my thoughts and have you help me. I don’t know very much – and I am sure of this; because the more I learn – I find out there is more to know. Just trying to figure out what to say next is a challenge. I don’t want to appear stupid; but I think I really am. Part of the reason I feel stupid is because I am a philosopher.

It seems to me everyone is insecure (stupid), but philosophers, are, more so. Why - because they question everything more than most. The process of asking the “hard” questions is daunting. Most people hate philosophy – that’s why they join a church. So they don’t have to ask hard questions – they can just be told the answers. What I mean to say is that questioning “things” is unsettling. The questions and the answers make us nervous. The more one questions, the more insecure one becomes. One could argue that a really good philosopher is not insecure because they have examined the big questions in detail, many times, and are secure in their positions. I think the answer to this is both yes and no – because the more we know – we understand there is more to know. I think a really good philosopher can have equanimity, but still be insecure in what they don’t understand. If you’re not insecure, in my estimation – you are not paying attention and you are not a very good philosopher.

Are you insecure?
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Are human beings insecure?



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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#2  Postby Greta » May 11th, 2017, 7:34 pm

Sure. Being an animal almost by definition means being insecure, always aiming for a level of balance which, if not achieved, means death. Yet why logically should we fear death? It's already happened to almost everyone with us just being the current crop still standing. Just that the ones in the past who feared danger survived to breed and pass on their characteristics more than those with less fear. Billions of years of growing and emerging fearful neuroses, common to almost all species, honed to a fine art by modern urban humans :)

What amazes me is that, in all the precariousness of life, we humans managed to create so many relatively safe societies, at least until recent years. Also, there's a number of cases where people had near death experiences and as a result they lost their fear of death. Once you're not afraid of death, I expect, many other fears would evaporate.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#3  Postby Woodart » May 11th, 2017, 8:20 pm

Greta wrote: Also, there's a number of cases where people had near death experiences and as a result they lost their fear of death. Once you're not afraid of death, I expect, many other fears would evaporate.



I tend to think most humans don’t even contemplate death for themselves. We are so afraid of it – we don’t think about it – we avoid it. I think the most common insecurity is intellectual. Most people are unsure of what they think – about religion, politics, economics, legal problems, social customs, etc. Then there are social interaction – “does this dress make me look fat?” Or another big one is sexual fantasy and fact. Sex makes most people crazy and unpredictable. How much time do people spend thinking about sex in a day? Food makes most people weird too. Anything we do or don’t do – makes us nuts.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#4  Postby Nick_A » May 11th, 2017, 8:56 pm

Woodart

It seems to me everyone is insecure (stupid), but philosophers, are, more so. Why - because they question everything more than most. The process of asking the “hard” questions is daunting. Most people hate philosophy – that’s why they join a church. So they don’t have to ask hard questions – they can just be told the answers. What I mean to say is that questioning “things” is unsettling. The questions and the answers make us nervous. The more one questions, the more insecure one becomes. One could argue that a really good philosopher is not insecure because they have examined the big questions in detail, many times, and are secure in their positions. I think the answer to this is both yes and no – because the more we know – we understand there is more to know. I think a really good philosopher can have equanimity, but still be insecure in what they don’t understand. If you’re not insecure, in my estimation – you are not paying attention and you are not a very good philosopher.


This is a difficult question. I’ve learned through experience that there are only a few with the humility and need for truth willing to discuss it honestly much less make efforts to consciously deal with it. Discussing insecurity requires discussing the human condition which features hypocrisy as the only way to deal with contradictions which produce insecurity. Why? Most pop psychology deals with creating your own reality so as to justify hypocrisy. It feels better than consciously experiencing the human condition which the ancient traditions initiating with a conscious source all described as essential.

Search this site. See how many topics are titled “The Human Condition?” Next, see how many topics are about what humans should do. It is always easier and more egoistically satisfying to argue about what humans should do rather than being concerned with the human condition which denies us the experience of conscious reality substituting imagination for it. But regardless of what the experts write and say something in us cannot find meaning in the contradictions offered by daily life. They leave us insecure and tempted to turn on the tube while creating our own reality. The real philosopher is willing to suffer the experience of contradictions and seek to leave the life of imagination in Plato’s cave. Unfortunately we are surrounded by experts who support creating our own reality making the search for truth even more difficult.

Are you insecure?


Of course. At this point in my life. I’m willing to be more realistic and admit that security doesn’t exist on earth. The human condition is such that we live in opposition with ourselves. So since it doesn’t, what is worth living for?
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#5  Postby Greta » May 11th, 2017, 9:15 pm

Woodart wrote:
Greta wrote: Also, there's a number of cases where people had near death experiences and as a result they lost their fear of death. Once you're not afraid of death, I expect, many other fears would evaporate.



I tend to think most humans don’t even contemplate death for themselves. We are so afraid of it – we don’t think about it – we avoid it.

It's a rather large elephant to keep in a room largely unremarked, though, isn't it? Whether we peek through our fingers at death or try to ignore it, the elephant isn't going anywhere.

Thing is, many people have come back from the brink and reported things that resulted in them no longer fearing death and generally being happier. So why don't we believe them? Possibly because of the many others who are clinically dead for a while and report that there was nothing, and also because we find it hard to imagine how their reported experiences could be "real" within the structures of physical reality. Personally, I think that if you're clinically dead and you are going into an inviting light then that's what you are doing. At that point cause and effect - or anything that was "essential" during life quickly becomes unimportant for the experiencer.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#6  Postby Woodart » May 11th, 2017, 9:38 pm

Nick_A wrote:
Of course. At this point in my life. I’m willing to be more realistic and admit that security doesn’t exist on earth.


I think that admitting you are insecure and not very intelligent is the beginning of wisdom. It does not make you wise or intelligent – but at least it gets you on the highway to both. Most people are off road and/or stuck in a ditch. I find myself there many times too. Life has never been secure for humans – 200,000 years ago or 2 seconds ago. However, insecurity drives our motivation. So, it is important.


Nick_A wrote:The human condition is such that we live in opposition with ourselves. So since it doesn’t, what is worth living for?


I think the job of a philosopher is to “know thyself”. It is the struggle with myself that gives me the opportunity to understand a little about who I am. It is a Promethean challenge. I also feel I do the labor of Sisyphus every day to know myself. I struggle today and rest at night – and then struggle some more tomorrow. It is a never ending cycle – because there is no end. I will never know myself, but I will try because it is worthy. Also, I am trapped in my own consciousness – a prisoner. If I am the least bit honest – I play the cards that are dealt me. I am here asking for your help to push the boulder up the hill.

-- Updated May 11th, 2017, 6:54 pm to add the following --

Greta wrote:It's a rather large elephant to keep in a room largely unremarked, though, isn't it? Whether we peek through our fingers at death or try to ignore it, the elephant isn't going anywhere.

Thing is, many people have come back from the brink and reported things that resulted in them no longer fearing death and generally being happier. So why don't we believe them? Possibly because of the many others who are clinically dead for a while and report that there was nothing, and also because we find it hard to imagine how their reported experiences could be "real" within the structures of physical reality. Personally, I think that if you're clinically dead and you are going into an inviting light then that's what you are doing. At that point cause and effect - or anything that was "essential" during life quickly becomes unimportant for the experiencer.



I agree with you Greta – death is with us all the time. And I think it is good to embrace – not be afraid of it. I think my point is that most people avoid looking at it. I think most people are cowards – intellectually, spiritually and biologically. I told you before as a carpenter I have almost killed myself many times. I still fear death, but I could not do the work if I was obsessed with it. I live with the elephant – I try and ride it.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#7  Postby Nick_A » May 11th, 2017, 10:20 pm

Woodart
However, insecurity drives our motivation. So, it is important.


Do you refer to intellectual or emotional insecurity? Where intellectual motivation can lead to freedom, emotional insecurity assures slavery. Have you experienced the difference?

I think the job of a philosopher is to “know thyself”. It is the struggle with myself that gives me the opportunity to understand a little about who I am. It is a Promethean challenge. I also feel I do the labor of Sisyphus every day to know myself. I struggle today and rest at night – and then struggle some more tomorrow. It is a never ending cycle – because there is no end. I will never know myself, but I will try because it is worthy. Also, I am trapped in my own consciousness – a prisoner. If I am the least bit honest – I play the cards that are dealt me. I am here asking for your help to push the boulder up the hill.


"Know Thyself." What is the “self?” What can know it and what imagines it? How can we experience the difference?

Simone Weil wrote: 'To be a hero or a heroine, one must give an order to oneself.'

She is right but if we give an order out of emotional insecurity what can be expected other than psychological slavery? Why push the boulder up the hill? Modern technology has provided tractors to push the damn thing up the hill so we can get back to the tube. Then we won’t have to personally experience the contradictions of the human condition and what it deprives us of. Will it make life worth living.
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#8  Postby Woodart » May 11th, 2017, 10:54 pm

Nick_A wrote:
Do you refer to intellectual or emotional insecurity? Where intellectual motivation can lead to freedom, emotional insecurity assures slavery. Have you experienced the difference?


Insecurity has many hats and so does motivation. It is in every aspect of our lives – biological, emotional, intellectual, etc. Our motivation to be healthy, to love or to learn comes from our understanding that we don’t have it or we want to maintain it or we want to acquire and/or increase it. Are there different motivations – absolutely. We are all slaves to our insecurities.


Nick_A wrote:"Know Thyself." What is the “self?” What can know it and what imagines it? How can we experience the difference?



You find yourself in the jungle of your consciousness – each moment we see a different picture of who we are – it is a motion picture. Our job is to direct and edit the movie and try and win the academy award for our production. The trick in life is to try and understand our insecurities - not be a slave to them – overcome them with courage and mastery.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#9  Postby Spectrum » May 12th, 2017, 3:15 am

    Secure:
    1. free from or not exposed to danger [threats] or harm; safe.
    ..
    5.free from care; without anxiety:
    emotionally secure.

DNA wise ALL humans are programmed with a neural circuit that triggers insecurity in a human so that one is driven to act by various direct, indirect, subliminal stimuli that are threats and dangers of potential death.

What is critical to this topic are the following;
1. the neural circuit that triggers insecurity and its modulators
2. the stimuli which are direct, indirect, subliminal
3. the stimuli which are physical or mental
4. the stimuli which are internal or external
5. the stimuli which are real or imagined [dreamt, illusory, etc.]
6. other stimuli that will trigger the insecurity neural circuit.

With the 'neural insecurity circuit' in the brain being exposed to so many levels and types of stimuli that will cause it to react, it is likely that the normal [not in coma] human being is insecure [relatively in various degrees] in waking hours.

With so many sources of possible sources of stimuli, the effective ways to deal with insecurity are the following;

1. Develop to make the neural modulators efficient
2. Prioritize the critical stimuli and take preventive steps to avoid them.

1. Develop to make the neural modulators efficient
What is this mechanism and how to improve it?
It is a long story.

2. Prioritize the critical stimuli and take preventive steps to avoid them.
Physical threats are easily recognize and as such need to be avoided [included potentially forecasted physical threats].

What is more serious are the mentally perceived threats that are not real and caused unnecessary worries, anxieties, mental pains, etc. This must be addressed.

However what is most critical is the subliminal stimuli that triggers the neural circuit of insecurity. This is the certainty of mortality that cause dissonance and is directly linked and triggers insecurity at all times subliminally.
Note the fear of mortality effects two levels, i.e. the conscious and unconscious [subliminal]. At the conscious level, humans has natural inhibitors to modulate the insecurity and its efficiency will depend on one's own nature.
But at the unconscious [subliminal] levels, the insecurity circuit is triggered at all times and the resultant manifest in all sorts of indirect impulses, such as angst, despairs, anxieties, etc. that drive the majority desperately to religions to seek security [soteriological salvation].

As for philosophers manifesting insecurity to seek knowledge and wisdom, this is very distant and indirect from the core. Such quests may have indirect link to 'insecurity' but the major part of it may link to the pleasure circuit, loving wisdom the associated pleasure from it.

Yes, humans beings are insecure [probably at all times] but we must qualify such a state with relevant range of elements analyzed above.
Not-a-theist. Religion is a critical necessity for humanity now, but not the FUTURE.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#10  Postby Woodart » May 12th, 2017, 3:47 pm

Spectrum wrote:However what is most critical is the subliminal stimuli that triggers the neural circuit of insecurity. This is the certainty of mortality that cause dissonance and is directly linked and triggers insecurity at all times subliminally.
Note the fear of mortality effects two levels, i.e. the conscious and unconscious [subliminal]. At the conscious level, humans has natural inhibitors to modulate the insecurity and its efficiency will depend on one's own nature.
But at the unconscious [subliminal] levels, the insecurity circuit is triggered at all times and the resultant manifest in all sorts of indirect impulses, such as angst, despairs, anxieties, etc. that drive the majority desperately to religions to seek security [soteriological salvation].



I am feeling a little insecure about what you wrote. I am not exactly sure what you wrote or what your point is. Are you saying that if a person is sweating we can scientifically determine – they are either working hard, nervous or both? Or that much of our insecurity is triggered by our imagination/delusions? OK, I can agree with these ideas. I like your point about subliminal insecurity, which I am sure is part of us all. I find your language and phrasing confusing. Is there a subliminal message in your post? If so, maybe you are saying you are smarter than us all. You may be right – maybe.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------->


Food has been a large source of our collective insecurity since day one. We have been and continue to be obsessed with it. In days of old we were concerned with getting enough to survive. There are still places like Somalia where famine is real, but not the majority of people in the world. Now we have 50 or more TV shows on how to cook cupcakes and/or prime rib. We even have “Chopped” for Children. So, what is it that makes us crazy for food?

Well, it tastes good and we use it to reward ourselves. Why do we need to reward ourselves? Because we are bored, idle, unfocussed, worried, apprehensive and/or insecure? How many people in the US are fat and have diabetes? I don’t know, look around – a lot.

Can you hold on for a moment – I just need a snack.

OK, I am back – that snickers candy bar was whispering to me. Don’t get me wrong, I only indulge in candy once a week; whether I need to or not. But cookies I can do a little more frequently. Food is a funny thing. We like to share food. Food is almost like sex; especially if your sex tends to be oral. Is eating alone like masturbation? I don’t know, maybe I am out on a limb here. However, we seem to use food for stimulation. It gets us excited, aroused – it provokes something in us. Just like ideas – is this food for thought?
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#11  Postby Nick_A » May 12th, 2017, 5:40 pm

woodart

You find yourself in the jungle of your consciousness – each moment we see a different picture of who we are – it is a motion picture. Our job is to direct and edit the movie and try and win the academy award for our production. The trick in life is to try and understand our insecurities - not be a slave to them – overcome them with courage and mastery.


Here is where we need Oprah and her New Age followers. Who best to tell you what and how to properly edit? Where would we be without these experts who have consented to teach how to create your own reality?
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#12  Postby Woodart » May 12th, 2017, 6:30 pm

Nick_A wrote:
Here is where we need Oprah and her New Age followers. Who best to tell you what and how to properly edit? Where would we be without these experts who have consented to teach how to create your own reality?



There is no shortage of advice that we get from TV, internet, church, family, printed press and our social peers. However, that is what philosophy is for – to build our intellectual muscle and independence. Forces influence us, but in the end – we make up our own mine. A philosopher with courage will rip himself apart to discover what the best thought is. This forum is a sparring gym – we are here to beat each other up – politely.
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#13  Postby Nick_A » May 12th, 2017, 6:54 pm

Woodart wrote:
Nick_A wrote:
Here is where we need Oprah and her New Age followers. Who best to tell you what and how to properly edit? Where would we be without these experts who have consented to teach how to create your own reality?



There is no shortage of advice that we get from TV, internet, church, family, printed press and our social peers. However, that is what philosophy is for – to build our intellectual muscle and independence. Forces influence us, but in the end – we make up our own mine. A philosopher with courage will rip himself apart to discover what the best thought is. This forum is a sparring gym – we are here to beat each other up – politely.


No. You describe the means for becoming an expert. That is not what philosophy is for. Jacob Needleman describes the function of philosophy in his book "The Heart of Philosophy:"

Chapter 1

Introduction

Man cannot live without philosophy. This is not a figure of speech but a literal fact that will be demonstrated in this book. There is a yearning in the heart that is nourished only by real philosophy and without this nourishment man dies as surely as if he were deprived of food and air. But this part of the human psyche is not known or honored in our culture. When it does breakthrough to our awareness it is either ignored or treated as something else. It is given wrong names; it is not cared for; it is crushed. And eventually, it may withdraw altogether, never again to appear. When this happens man becomes a thing. No matter what he accomplishes or experiences, no matter what happiness he experiences or what service he performs, he has in fact lost his real possibility. He is dead.

……………………….The function of philosophy in human life is to help Man remember. It has no other task. And anything that calls itself philosophy which does not serve this function is simply not philosophy……………………………….


You would be surprised how many dead experts are walking around in society. Maybe that is why Jesus said to let the dead bury their dead.
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#14  Postby LuckyR » May 12th, 2017, 7:14 pm

There are individuals who don't care what others think. Autistic folks, for one.
"As usual... it depends."
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Re: Are human beings insecure?

Post Number:#15  Postby Woodart » May 12th, 2017, 7:42 pm

Nick_A wrote:
……………………….The function of philosophy in human life is to help Man remember. It has no other task. And anything that calls itself philosophy which does not serve this function is simply not philosophy……………………………….





Well, I am not so sure we are thinking differently – or maybe we are. Remember what? Philosophy leads us to remember how to think, plan, scheme, calculate, contemplate, cogitate, construct, deliberate, ruminate, muse, meditate and/or consider. Philosophy has all these functions and more. Philosophy is the first science and the foundation of all others. It will never leave us as long as we have contemplative capabilities. As long as we have problems to solve, things to fix, places to go – hence insecurities – philosophy is our travel companion. Philosophy is the toolbox we use to work on our insecurities, allay our fears – calm our nerves. Everyone is a philosopher - whether they know it or not – most people are not very good at it. That’s why they go to church.
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