Hereandnow wrote: ↑
January 18th, 2018, 10:56 am
So you notice something about yourself that you'd missed?
I've noticed lots of things, but one that stands out is the failure of any ideas in all I've read to explain human suffering. I mean, Being was thrust into existence (so to speak) in some Big Bang, and 13 billion years or so later it decides to torture itself though the agencies of, well, us. What is that all about? It doesn't make sense, which means our explanatory theories about being here fail in this.
Suffering makes sense to me. The universe is growing and developing - from something simple and mindless to something much more sentient. This is happening on all levels; what was once the stuff of clouds and rocks has long been spontaneously reforming itself into feeling body systems and brains, of which ours are just a couple - Sagan's star dust on the move. If you are an infant, then you struggling your way out of chaos and turmoil; if you are old and wise, you probably feel pretty good most of the time because you have achieved more mental and emotional order, including more acceptance of, and capacity to ignore, physical pain.
On another level, our body routinely kills and slews its own cells when no longer required. The situation for us animals is the same. We are both ends in ourselves and the collateral damage that is part of the process of larger emergences, of which we are part, as they move towards greater maturity and order. Hence theism's - all of society's, really - constant pressure and encouragement to not identify with self but a larger entity. It's long been sensed that mindfulness of our small roles within larger entities at least existentially provides the optimism of feeling more useful than doomed.
My guess is that life (or what emerges from life) that's much more advanced than us today will suffer less intensely, just as we today have an easier time of it than ancient people living their short and dangerous and perennially perplexed lives. When ye olde worlde metaphysics are removed, de Chardin's Omega Point concept makes good sense - the natural product of evolutionary processes; constant inversion and eversion, consumption and output over time that creates ever more integration and interconnection in the fabric of reality, concentrated in nodes.
Summary: I'm optimistic about the deep future.
Hereandnow wrote:I don't know what value is. Or anything, really. To stand before the world and know this is remarkable.
Everything in reality is remarkable, extraordinary and generally mind blowing if considered deeply enough. The view from the inside is not one that facilitates understanding :)
When you die, what would you hope to happen?
As for all: Existential redemption.
Why should we need to be redeemed? We are complex, interesting and generally fabulous beings that have been thrust cruelly into life - screaming, afraid and helpless - without a reliable manual, and been forced to stumble our way, somewhat blindly, through a few decades until death or despair.
All anyone does, or has done, in this life is the best they could muster at the time. Do you think you could have done better at certain times in your life? If so, then you must have overestimated yourself and your capabilities. The fact that one feels like they have underachieved makes clear that they did not take all factors into account when assessing what they could do.
Thus I see us all as largely innocent and utterly blameless at a deeper existential level, even if guilt for entropic deeds must be apportioned in the running of a society. Once you are on your deathbed, sensorily cut off from that outside world, none of that will matter, only the theatre inside your head :)