Sushan wrote: ↑September 27th, 2023, 5:12 am
popeye1945 wrote: ↑September 26th, 2023, 10:20 pm
Sushan wrote: ↑September 26th, 2023, 10:02 pm
popeye1945 wrote: ↑September 26th, 2023, 9:51 pm
Indeed, compassion and empathy come into being with the identification of one's self with the self in others, only then do these sentiments arise. They, however, are not unique to humanity, but are shared I suspect with all other organisms. All organisms are reactive creatures and this is just one example of a reaction that is shared across the board. Granted it is most easily identified when an organism is in a society/group of like organisms, which makes identification much easier. How many people do you think identify with the organisms that they call food? No identification with, no compassion, no empathy. This makes me wonder about people who believe in a merciful all-good God, how can one respect such people, I mean, intellectually. Humanity at large has no compassion for life in general when factory farms are allowed to exist. I know from some experience that many native people still have this identification with all other life forms, perhaps even the fifty percent or more that fall under the title of parasites, which is the nature of all life, the Uroboros, the snake consuming its own tail. Tennyson, I'll try to remember that. Perhaps that is the answer to all political strife, the lack of identification of one's self with the self in others even within our own like kind.
You bring forth a deeply introspective angle on the intricacies of compassion and empathy. The identification of one's self with another does seem to be at the heart of these sentiments. It's thought-provoking to consider how this lack of identification, as you've highlighted, manifests in our societal structures like factory farming and even our interpersonal relationships, leading to a detachment from empathy.
I wholeheartedly agree that many of our actions, individually and as a collective, may not reflect a universal compassion for all life forms. It's a poignant reminder that while we have the capacity for profound kindness and empathy, it's often limited by our identifications and perceptions.
Yet, I'd like to believe that humans also possess the potential to expand this circle of compassion. Throughout history, our moral sphere has evolved and expanded. While still imperfect, movements towards vegetarianism, veganism, and sustainable farming practices signal a growing awareness and concern for beings we've previously seen as 'other.'
Regarding the belief in a merciful, all-good deity, it's important to understand that religious and spiritual beliefs often serve as frameworks for individuals to navigate the complexities of existence. While it may be challenging to reconcile certain beliefs with the realities of suffering in the world, they can offer solace, purpose, and guidance to many. Respecting diverse belief systems, even if we don't agree, is part of recognizing the myriad ways humans grapple with existential questions.
In the end, perhaps the journey towards benevolence is not about reaching a utopian state of universal compassion but about continually striving to expand our understandings, challenge our limitations, and cultivate empathy even in the face of our inherent nature.
Excellent post! The only area I have a different slant on is, the nature of religious people being either unaware of or withdrawing from reality, and the self-satisfaction they seem to enjoy as if knowing something others do not. It can only mean deception, perhaps self-deception, but to me it does not seem admirable. Understandable too I suppose as a survival mechanism. Their frustrated tolerance of the unbeliever is frankly a piss off.
Thank you for your kind words and for presenting your viewpoint so candidly. The dynamic between religious believers and non-believers has indeed been a point of contention for centuries. It's vital, however, to acknowledge the vast spectrum within religious beliefs and practices. Just as there are some who might come off as self-satisfied or detached from reality, there are countless others for whom faith is a deeply introspective, humble, and evolving journey.
Religion, for many, provides a framework to understand the world, cope with uncertainties, and find purpose. This doesn't necessarily mean they're unaware of or withdrawing from reality. Instead, they're interpreting reality through a particular lens. Similarly, secular individuals may interpret the same realities through a different set of beliefs or frameworks.
While it's disheartening when any group displays a lack of understanding or intolerance towards another, painting an entire community based on the actions or attitudes of a subset might not do justice to the complexities within. Your feelings of frustration are valid and highlight the need for open dialogue, mutual respect, and understanding.
In an ideal world, believers and non-believers would coexist, recognizing that our shared human experience is colored by diverse beliefs and perspectives. Each of us is trying to make sense of existence in our own way. Would you agree that promoting dialogue and understanding between differing viewpoints is a step forward in bridging these divides?
Yes, I absolutely agree that promoting dialogue and understanding between differing viewpoints is a crucial step forward in bridging divides between believers and non-believers, as well as among people with diverse beliefs and perspectives in general. In an ideal world, respecting and acknowledging the diversity of human thought and belief can lead to greater tolerance, empathy, and cooperation among individuals and communities.
Here are some key reasons why fostering dialogue and understanding is important:
Promoting Tolerance: Engaging in respectful conversations allows individuals to better understand the reasons behind each other's beliefs. This understanding can lead to greater tolerance, as people recognize that their differences are a natural part of the human experience.
Building Empathy: Dialogue encourages people to put themselves in the shoes of others, which can foster empathy. Understanding the challenges, experiences, and emotions that drive someone's beliefs can help create a more compassionate society.
Resolving Conflicts: Constructive dialogue is often a peaceful way to address conflicts and find common ground. It can prevent misunderstandings from escalating into disputes and facilitate the resolution of disagreements.
Advancing Knowledge: Open discussions between believers and non-believers, or people with differing perspectives, can lead to the exchange of ideas and knowledge. This intellectual exchange can promote personal growth and expand collective understanding.
Cultural Enrichment: Encouraging dialogue among people with diverse beliefs and perspectives can enrich a society's culture by exposing individuals to new ideas, traditions, and worldviews.
Fostering Social Cohesion: Promoting understanding and cooperation can strengthen social cohesion, leading to more cohesive and harmonious communities.
However, it's important to note that fostering dialogue and understanding is a two-way process. It requires both parties to be open-minded, respectful, and willing to listen to each other's perspectives. It's also important to create safe spaces for these conversations, where individuals can express their beliefs without fear of judgment or discrimination.
In summary, promoting dialogue and understanding between believers and non-believers, as well as among people with diverse beliefs and perspectives, is a vital step toward building a more inclusive and harmonious society where individuals can coexist in mutual respect and cooperation.