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What are you living for?

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ThomasHobbes
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by ThomasHobbes » June 15th, 2018, 2:13 pm


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Re: What are you living for?

Post by ThomasHobbes » June 15th, 2018, 2:14 pm

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Greta
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Greta » June 18th, 2018, 3:52 am

Dachshund wrote:
June 15th, 2018, 5:28 am
Greta wrote:
June 9th, 2018, 7:24 pm
I don't need a reason to live. That's a given - I'm alive until I am not. However, I sometimes need reasons to do what I do while I am alive.
Greta,

I agree. Human beings do not need reasons ( logical, rational, etc; type reasons) to regard life as being worth living (and insulate themselves, for instance, from the distress of chronic suicidal ideation, or indeed the actuality of attempting - successfully or otherwise to take their own lives) but they do, generally speaking, need to have values.
What helped me during my midlife crisis was knowing that my suicide would harm my family. Since part of my problem was feeling like I **** up everything and everyone I touched, the idea that doing myself in would cause exponentially more harm still was a strong inhibitor, along with a healthy yellow streak. The value involved there was basic, found in many children and probably other animals - the wish not to harm.

Today, the only reason for me to check out would be the prospect of prolonged torture, as might happen when one is gravely ill or injured. Otherwise, I today have a different way of thinking because others' opinions mean not so much when one re-falls in love with nature and philosophical big picture thinking - about what is and might be. the grand mysteries.

In that context, the chiding and offence taken by other hominids still working through the "achieving phase" is akin to the chittering of birds or the barking of dogs - just intelligent social beings doing what they do at that time of life. I still chitter way myself at times, but increasingly less so. One can respect it without taking it seriously, just as I respect the local family of kookaburras but don't much care that they'd see me as just one more big scary hominid :)
Dachshund wrote:The word "ought", in turn, connotes an expression of justice - of moral rightness. In sum, If I believe that something ought be desired, then I am assuming that the world ought be a certain way; moreover, I only feel that the world ought be a certain way if it is not that way already. Thus, having values means that we feel that the world ought be different from the way that it is. And this, I think, is how most of us look upon the world most of the time (?)
As the Anthony Hopkins character from Westworld put it: "... suffering. The pain that the world is not as you want it to be."
Dachshund wrote:The other way to view the world is from a strictly scientific, objective, amoral perspective. If we adopt the outlook of a scientist and endeavour to see the world strictly as is IS, that is, as a place wholly divested of all values; that is, one that is comprised solely of matter and energy, where mindless particles interact in predetermined ways, and there is no reason to expect that human beings are any exception to the laws of science, then we naturally experience an acute sense of absurdity.
Only if we don't think like a scientist. The problem with material fundamentalism is that it ignores emergence. Morality naturally emerged with social living and has continued to refine, develop and expand. For social beings others are not necessarily just prey, predators, competitors or neutrals - they might be kin, neighbours, friends, associates and fellow group members, all relationships varying in scope and intensity depending on circumstance and temperament.
Dachshund wrote:This is because when we adopt a strictly objective worldview that looks at things quite simply as they are, values become irrelevant.
Only if one lacks empathy. Strict values are required to keep the least empathetic of us from overstepping and harming others. Those with empathy will naturally uphold moral standards well above and beyond any prescribed baseline strictures or laws because they are acting out of care rather than obedience.
Dachshund wrote:This question is essentially a recognition of absurdity, a recognition that, from at least one perspective, there is no point in doing anything - that life is utterly meaningless.
Even during my midlife meltdown I never thought life was meaningless, just that I felt like a complete ƒuckup merchant and imagined that everyone would be better off if I was gone ... except that some pesky varmints were silly enough to not see how dreadful I was and insisted on caring too much for me to do the deed :) However, meaninglessness did not figure, rather it was self loathing.

Life seemed most meaningless to me as a child when I kept asking people about what life was about and everyone keps saying that the purpose of life was to reproduce. And with great certainty. To what end, I wondered, to just reproduce again? I had a "turtles all the way down" moment.

A turning point for me, ironically, was Richard Dawkins's concept of memes reproducing and being honed by a form of selection like genes. I had an aha moment, realising that reproduction was just one expression of a much broader dynamic and development in life - the spread of influence per se, by whatever means. We can become barren with age yet remain fecund in another way.
Dachshund wrote:My point is that the fact we (I human being) have values is a very interesting and important aspect of our existence. For me, it is one quite distinctive feature of our fundamental/essential human nature; one that we can can perhaps (?) "tag and label", metaphorically speaking, and use to further progress our metaphysical enquiries into the profound - and largely unfathomed mystery - of our true( human) being as such ?

What do you think ?
I largely take it for granted. If you are a civilised human being lucky enough not to be in extreme situations then you simply don't hassle others, neither man nor beast. You don't hassle those who may suffer because you want to be happy and you want others around to be happy as well. We have laws for those with less safe boundaries.

In fact, this is what I believe the grand project of life in engaged in - trying to find a way of being free from suffering.

Life obviously does not want to suffer, and is constantly in flight from suffering. Perhaps the upcoming melding of human and machine will dampen both joy and suffering? It may be a more rational, emotionally flatline and stable existence, as if on Prozac. Humans are already more controlled, generally less emotionally labile, than other mammals so it's easy to imagine that process of calming continuing.

Or perhaps an increasing transfer of our minds into virtual worlds will remove the suffering inherent in owning a biological metabolism, eventually allowing for joy without pain? It would arguably be for the best, anyway, if humans disappeared into virtual worlds and reduced their environmental footprint.

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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Belindi » June 18th, 2018, 5:57 am

Aw, Thomas, what a sweet face your doggy has!

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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Belindi » June 18th, 2018, 6:34 am

Aw, Thomas, what a sweet face your doggy has!
____________________

Greta, many thanks for your last post, the reply to Dachshund.

I do like your ethic of not increasing suffering to your family, although one's abiding by that ethic (apart from one's 'healthy yellow streak) adds to one's own burdensome life.

My family would approve of my ending my life if I had constant and severe suffering, even if that suffering was emotional/mental and not physical pain.

I don't understand , Greta, how , at that time, you could be so fully sure that you were unworthy. Did you not have doubts that perhaps you were worthy?
Regarding memes, I agree that progression towards good is possible and does happen via progression of minds. It's not inevitable though. That would be dangerously optimistic. Neither do I believe that there will be an end of history as long as human beings exist.

To return to discussing your ethic of bearing with suffering for the sake of others, that's the essence of love.

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love ’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error, and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever lov’d.


This is the same theme as Paul's in his letter to the Corinthians.

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ReasonMadeFlesh
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by ReasonMadeFlesh » June 18th, 2018, 7:33 pm

Belindi wrote:
June 18th, 2018, 6:34 am
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love ’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error, and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever lov’d.


This is the same theme as Paul's in his letter to the Corinthians.
Forgive my rather... shall we say "abrupt" tone, ahem, but Thomas is a silly person and his avatar makes me laugh.

Also, I'd just like to break the mould by saying

Hey know, you're a moderator
Get your game on, get paid
"A philosopher who does not take part in discussions is like a boxer who never goes into the ring." - Ludwig Wittgenstein

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ReasonMadeFlesh
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by ReasonMadeFlesh » June 18th, 2018, 7:35 pm

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Hahahahahahah
"A philosopher who does not take part in discussions is like a boxer who never goes into the ring." - Ludwig Wittgenstein

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Greta
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Greta » June 18th, 2018, 10:38 pm

Belindi wrote:
June 18th, 2018, 6:34 am
Aw, Thomas, what a sweet face your doggy has!
____________________

Greta, many thanks for your last post, the reply to Dachshund.

I do like your ethic of not increasing suffering to your family, although one's abiding by that ethic (apart from one's 'healthy yellow streak) adds to one's own burdensome life.

My family would approve of my ending my life if I had constant and severe suffering, even if that suffering was emotional/mental and not physical pain.

I don't understand , Greta, how , at that time, you could be so fully sure that you were unworthy. Did you not have doubts that perhaps you were worthy?
Regarding memes, I agree that progression towards good is possible and does happen via progression of minds. It's not inevitable though. That would be dangerously optimistic. Neither do I believe that there will be an end of history as long as human beings exist.
A dog fan here too! Many people enjoy a range of interactions from simple to complex rather than wading through adult human complexity all of the time. Pets, gardens, house plants, nature walks and camping, rocks, nature documentaries - many of us remain attached to our roots.

Re: unworthiness, it's typical of depression. You screw up a few times and then you remember all the other screwups (while taking for granted the good things). You then add up all those bad things and arrive at a faulty total, like an auditor who is blind to the Income column. Why? Trauma from bullying.

As far as I can tell, the depressed tend to mentally apply to themselves the value judgements of their worst bullies in youth. Why? A response to undiagnosed PTSD. It's a worst case scenario constantly rerun in the mind - a reflexive desensitisation done so that if one is attacked similarly again it will be less of a shock (a physical example here would be an sexually abused girl who becomes a prostitute - she is emotionally inoculating herself with "controlled doses" so she will never again feel that same shock, fear, shame and general horror.

In physical terms, the mental stance it's akin to a defensive huddle - a small target with only the "hard shell" exposed like a porcupine curled into a ball. Trouble is, the soft and vulnerable part tucked away inside is where the good things can come in. These are all attempts to overcome suffering and each results in desensitisation resulting in relative emotional flatlining.

It does seem that decreased emotional volatility lied ahead, one way or another.

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Greta
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Greta » June 18th, 2018, 10:50 pm

Belindi wrote:
June 18th, 2018, 6:34 am
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love ’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error, and upon me prov’d,
I never writ, nor no man ever lov’d.


This is the same theme as Paul's in his letter to the Corinthians.
And thus, with such commitment made to love, dear doggies, no matter how old and messed up you become, we will continue to walk, feed, pat, notice, wash (sorry, but has to be done) and speak gently to you :)

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Burning ghost
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Burning ghost » June 19th, 2018, 12:04 am

The trouble with dogs is they taste a bit too gamey for my palate ;)
AKA badgerjelly

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Re: What are you living for?

Post by chondriac » June 19th, 2018, 12:27 am

I imagine I'm playing a game, but I'm playing it seriously.

Belindi
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Belindi » June 19th, 2018, 4:00 am

Greta wrote:
As far as I can tell, the depressed tend to mentally apply to themselves the value judgements of their worst bullies in youth. Why? A response to undiagnosed PTSD. It's a worst case scenario constantly rerun in the mind - a reflexive desensitisation done so that if one is attacked similarly again it will be less of a shock (a physical example here would be an sexually abused girl who becomes a prostitute - she is emotionally inoculating herself with "controlled doses" so she will never again feel that same shock, fear, shame and general horror.

In physical terms, the mental stance it's akin to a defensive huddle - a small target with only the "hard shell" exposed like a porcupine curled into a ball. Trouble is, the soft and vulnerable part tucked away inside is where the good things can come in. These are all attempts to overcome suffering and each results in desensitisation resulting in relative emotional flatlining.
I agree. Do you agree that this psychoanalytic insight helps in a practical way? Your other description, where you describe the cause of unworthiness feelings as like the work of a badly trained accountant, may indicate a cognitive behavioural therapeutic remedy.

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Re: What are you living for?

Post by -1- » June 19th, 2018, 4:11 am

What am I living for? For the daily challenge of earning a little joy in life. For seeing the sunshine, for hearing the birds sing, for drinking fresh, crystal clear water, for deeply inhaling pure air. For running my fingers through my hair, for using a hygienic paper that does not tear, does not scratch, yet removes the ... erm residue. For sitting down to a heaping serving of richly favoured morning cup of coffee, in my housecoat, armed with the morning paper in one hand, and a sconce in the other.

I live for the love of mankind, for the love of birds, trees, dogs, tapeworms and Bacillii Fasciitis Necrotismus. I live for my self-satisfying attempt to make the world a better place. I live for beauty, justice, and balance. I live for I enjoy living. for the joy of life. And that is a darn good arrangement.
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by -1- » June 19th, 2018, 4:23 am

ThomasHobbes wrote:
June 15th, 2018, 2:14 pm
Image
"Philosophy... is to question that which we already know,
Religion... is a light in the fog."

"Philosophy...is a walk on a slippery rock,
Religion... is a smile on a dog."

-Edie Brickell.
This search engine is powered by Hunger, Thirst, and a desperate need to Mate.

Belindi
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Re: What are you living for?

Post by Belindi » June 19th, 2018, 4:25 am

ReasonMadeFlesh wrote:
June 18th, 2018, 7:35 pm
Image

Hahahahahahah
You are a fine one of all people to disapprove of Thomas's avatar! Your own taste for an air-brushed Jesus is the sloppiest I have ever seen.

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