• Athena
    1.9k
    Too unnuanced for my taste. Maybe ok as a comparison, but Athens' democracy was also build on slaves and could only work by excluding the great mass of people from consensus decision making. The same actually goes for the US in times past. The model of democracy you seem to favour actually requires the exclusion of many people and many legitimate interests. Enlightenment democracy is democracy for the happy few. In the 19th century the challenge the Prussians faced and later the rest of the world was how to manage a mass society, a society in which everyone wanted a voice. One way was discipline and drilling as the school system does. You call specialization a poison to democracy and that goes hand in hand with this. Specialization though might well his sociological inevitability. It is not coincidental that the great sociologists of old were... Germans. The greatest of which, Max Weber, grew up in Prussia and very meticulously already analyzed the 'iron cage' of bureaucratization.Tobias

    :grin: "Democracy is a way of life and social organization which above all others is sensitive to the dignity and worth of the individual human personality, affirming the fundamental moral and political equality of all men and recognizing no barriers of race, religion, or circumstance." (Germanerl Report of the Seminar on "What is Democracy?" Congress in Education for Democracy, August, 1939)

    Our form of government is a republic. Only very small populations can have direct democracy and there was a time in Athens when every male citizen who came of age had to attend the governing meetings, so everyone understood the reasoning of the law and had an opportunity to change that reasoning, as a meeting of the gods debating until having a consensus.

    I believe it is important we understand democracy as a culture not the form of government. Government is only one aspect of democracy. We retain the power of the people by electing representatives that is a republic. However, again when we are not transmitting that culture through education, we can not manifest democracy any more than a church will manifest Christianity if it puts the Bible in a back corner and teaches math and science instead of Bible stories.
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    I would say that it has no value. However, I can agree for the sake of the argument that it certainly is, which is why a state of affairs where happiness does not happen might also be an actually relevant one. But I digress, so I do agree that the actual states of affairs are important.DA671

    Ok, so states of affairs are important.
    AND
    There is no collateral damage in one and there is collateral damage in the other.

    However, in regards to happiness..
    There is no happiness in one and there is happiness in the other.

    Now comes the tricky part...
    No collateral damage is hurting no one. That is a fact.
    No happiness is occurring to no one. That is a fact.

    Those are the facts "on the ground". The moral question the antinatalist poses then is:

    How can it ever be bad that someone does not incur collateral damage (of harm), when the collateral damage of "no happiness", is incurred by literally "no one"?

    The fact is, the state of affairs of harm is not taking place. No one suffers.
    The fact is, the state of affairs of no happiness is taking place. No one suffers the lack of happiness either.

    There is no losing side to the second state of affairs. These are the facts on the ground, and that's just with minimal value statements added. When adding this as well, I think it's pretty much an open shut case for antinatalism.
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    Following your advice, refraining from procreation, would end all human existence in 150 years. If no one gets telomerized, that is, which is highly unlikely and shifts the problem to immortality. There will be no more suffering, no more happiness, and nature will be released from a damaging influence.Raymond

    Indeed that might be a consequence.
  • DA671
    139
    Yeah, the case for the falsity of antinatalism is certainly closed ;)

    The no-so-tricky part is that:

    1. The lack of happiness is benefitting nobody. This is a fact.

    2. "No collateral damage" is happening to nobody. This is a fact.

    These are the actual facts on the ground. Now, the reality is:

    The lack of "collateral damage" cannot be considered preferable or good, since its absence does not incur any benefits onto an actual person.

    The fact is: the state of affairs of happiness is not taking place. Nobody feels great about the lack of damage either.

    There's definitely a lot of losing in the second state of affairs. If the absence of the harms is good even if it doesn't help an actual person, the lack of happiness is also bad, irrespective of whether or not someone is there to express their desire to have it. This is the simple and necessarily consistent case, and I think that it is a better representation of reality than the flawed one provided by antinatalism.
  • DA671
    139
    Quite a terrible consequence indeed ;)
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    Yeah, the case for the falsity of antinatalism is certainly closedDA671

    Saying this doesn't make it true.. but let's move forward shall we?

    The lack of happiness is benefitting nobody. This is a fact.DA671

    Yep, I'd agree with that. But that is not how I phrased it, so you are trying to change my statement. I simply said, no collateral damage is taking place.

    The lack of "collateral damage" cannot be considered preferable or good, since its absence does not incur any benefits onto an actual person.DA671

    Again, twisting it! I simply stated the fact that no collateral damage is taking place. Stick with what I'm saying and not where you want it to be.

    There's definitely a lot of losing in the second state of affairs. If the absence of the harms is good even if it doesn't help an actual person, the lack of happiness is also bad, irrespective of whether or not someone is there to express their desire to have it. This is the simple and necessarily consistent case, and I think that it is a better representation of reality than the flawed one provided by antinatalism.DA671

    So then this becomes irrelevant as it's again more changing the argument.

    Let's look at this one more time...

    Description of a state of affairs:
    No collateral damage of harm is taking place.
    No happiness is being deprived (to an actual person).

    Do we agree with this?
  • DA671
    139
    Saying it's an "open shut case" also doesn't make it true. Not sure how much "forward" we're going to go, but sure.

    I am not trying to put words in your mouth. I was merely stating a fact that the lack of collateral damage is not helping anybody in inexistence.

    "Twists" are necessary to fix already twisted ideas ;) You said:
    "How can it ever be bad that someone does not incur collateral damage (of harm), when the collateral damage of "no happiness", is incurred by literally "no one"?"

    This isn't just about no damage taking place. Firstly, I did not claim that the lack of damage is bad; I said that if the lack of damage is good, then the lack of happiness is also bad. You seemed to imply that the absent happiness does not matter because it doesn't "damage" anybody. I only pushed for consistency by pointing out that, by the same token, the lack of collateral damage also does not bestow any good upon someone who does not exist. So, if the lack of happiness cannot be bad due to a lack of experiential harm, I don't think that a lack of damage could be considered preferable since there is no experiential benefit arising in that state of affairs.

    It's quite relevant.

    Full description:
    No benefit from a lack of harm is taking place.
    No relief is being felt from any "prevented suffering" (for an actual person).

    If this is true, then I certainly agree with (parts) of what you say.
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    This isn't just about no damage taking place. You seemed to imply that the absence happiness does not matter because it doesn't "damage" anybody. I only pushed for consistency by pointing out that, by the same token, the lack of collateral damage also does not bestow any good upon someone who does not exist. So, if the lack of happiness cannot be bad due to a lack of experiential harm, I don't think that a lack of damage could be considered preferable since there is no experiential benefit arising in that state of affairs.DA671

    Since I am not saying this, I'll disregard it. So moving on.

    Full description:
    No benefit from a lack of harm is taking place.
    No relief is being felt from any "prevented suffering" (for an actual person).
    DA671

    Yep, that seems to be what you keep twisting my statements to, I agree.
  • DA671
    139
    You don't seem to understand your own views, or have altered them without realising it. Nevertheless, I will disregard this manoeuvre, though an actual explanation would be appreciated.

    I was making my own statement, so this has nothing to do with your words. Once again, an unsubstantiated claim.
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    I was making my own statement, so this has nothing to do with your words. Once again, an unsubstantiated claim.DA671

    No, you were trying to say that I was doing the opposite of those statements with my own statements.
    All I said was:
    No collateral damage of harm is taking place.
    No happiness is being deprived (to an actual person).

    I made no reference to anyone benefiting or not benefiting from it. That is why I said this is facts on the ground and not value statements attached to them.
  • DA671
    139
    No, I clearly said "full statement", which means that I believe that the points I added should also be a part of the sort of framework you had proposed. This is a complete misunderstanding, I am afraid.

    I could rephrase what I said for further clarity:
    No happiness is taking place.
    No relief/satisfaction from the absence of damage is being provided (to an actual person).

    I am not bound to use your terminologies (I consider damage to be linked with value, but I digress), but rest assured, I was not referring to anything other than the facts on the ground.
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    No, I clearly said "full statement", which means that I believe that the points I added should also be a part of the sort of framework you had proposed. This is a complete misunderstanding, I am afraid.DA671

    Yes, you would want that because it makes your argument easier. But I am not adding it.. You don't know where I'm necessarily going with this yet (which is clear), but it's best not to add anything unnecessarily beforehand, otherwise you are making strawmen to knockdown.

    I am not bound to use your terminologies, but rest assured, I was not referring to anything other than the facts on the ground.DA671

    No you were not though. When you stated that "no benefit" and "no relief" were taking place, you were trying to put an extra value in there whereby you essentially append.. "And there is no person to realize this GOOD". I didn't even say whether no happiness and no harm was good or bad yet.. I just stated that it is not taking place, period at this point.
  • DA671
    139
    And you don't wish to add them, because you're aware that it highlights the flaws of your philosophy. I think I have a decent idea, but I will avoid giving any false impressions of attacking "straw men" in the future

    You did the same when you said "No happiness is being deprived", since this clearly meant that no "person" exists to realise this bad.. Again, I am not going to accept unjustifiable inconsistencies. However, that's fine. You can elaborate on what you wish to say. I haven't done much more than object to potential/actual double standards that I've spotted, period. Be that as it may, I apologise if I misunderstood/misconstrued anything you said.
  • Raymond
    649
    Democracy is a way of life and social organization which above all others is sensitive to the dignity and worth of the individual human personality, affirming the fundamental moral and political equality of all men and recognizing no barriers of race, religion, or circumstanceAthena

    Why should a democracy be a way of live and social organization above all others? Why shouldn't other forms of life be sensitive to the dignity and worth of the individual?


    Start first from either having a culture or not. Culture starting from some specialization in the society, things like language and then written language, agriculture, or not having all that.ssu

    Here you already start from the picture of a special kind of society. Not having material specializations, doesn't mean no culture. There are lots of cultures based on principles different from the ones entertained by enlightenment. Usually these cultures are called primitive. But that's only in the light of enlightenment, and these cultures are not cultures in the sense of cultivating nature by they are cultures based on an entirely different worldview. Humanity managed to survive long before the advent of enlightenment, and the light shined pwas liberating and is shining more brightly than ever, is just one light amongst many, and it's harsh reality that people living cultures or ways of life not wanting to live in that light have simply melted away in the burning light of "the" enlightenment, have lost the way, turning to alcohol or other addictive raffinated stuff, or were forced to do so, with an efficient, sleazy method, compared to which the beating in submission and forced conversion in the name of Gods seems a small peanut.
  • schopenhauer1
    6.4k
    You did the same when you said "No happiness is being deprived", since this clearly meant that no "person" exists to realise this bad..DA671

    But this isn't the same. You can take that out if you like, I just wanted to make clear that this isn't talking about some future happiness missed, but a current state of affairs.

    To continue: If this is a state of affairs, who is judging this state of affairs? You are correct in that it is not the person not born yet. This is solely a decision by the "already-existing" (in this case a person who is choosing whether to procreate). That being said, now we can start looking at values, ethical intuitions and whatnot.

    If there is a state of affairs whereby no on is suffering (and no collateral damage of "no happiness" either to any actual person), then how is it justified to start suffering on someone else's behalf?

    Here is where you might retort.. Plenty of situations! Almost all of them have to do with creating a smaller harm to prevent a greater harm.. making children attend school, get vaccinated, tough love, etc. etc.

    While I agree, it would be moral to allow smaller harm for greater harm, this only happens once someone is already put into existence. Assuming that allowing greater suffering if it could be prevented is bad, this would indeed go along with ethical reasoning.

    However, in this case, someone is starting (wholesale) the conditions whereby ALL suffering will take place for another person. This suffering, as we see from the initial state of affairs (conditions), is not taking place currently. However, the parent would presume that they should change the state whereby now someone will suffer.

    Now you can ask, what is the nature of this suffering? Is it trivial or very temporary? No, it is not. Life presents a litany of pains great and small. Is it escapable? No, you have to stick with the restrictions and contingent sufferings of life's game or you exit it by suicide. So at the end here we are:
    1) Starting the conditions for all suffering unnecessarily
    2) On behalf of someone else
    3) The suffering is not trivial
    4) The suffering is inescapable.

    If you acknowledge that those four things are in fact true, then you would ask, why you would do that to someone? The most obvious response will be, "Because happiness!". Another popular one is because "Life itself is just intrinsically valuable and needs to be experienced by SOMEONE". I will get to that counter later, but I would like to start with the initial premise.
  • DA671
    139
    Perfectly understandable, but I believe it is. I think I could also focus more on the current state of affairs instead of a non-beneficial future prevention of damage.

    Indeed.

    This assumes that not creating the damage is either ethically good/neutral. If it's good to prevent damage whose prevention would not satisfy the interests of an actual person, then it is also bad to prevent happiness, regardles of whether or not someone exists to be deprived of it. If it is solely neutral, then I don't see how it can be justifiable to say that bestowing the good of happiness on another person's behalf is not ethical, especially considering the fact that there is no happiness and no satisfaction arising from "no collateral damage".

    We certainly do have situations wherein one incurs harms in order to achieve greater goods, though I don't think it is necessary in all cases, provided one learns to limit their unnecessary needs. For instance, I don't think that infinite money is a required for a meaningful life, but some might crave it due to their inability to find contentment.

    The problem is that you're only concerned with suffering. However, one is also starting the conditions for all joyous experiences. Someone is starting the state of affairs which would allow all happiness to take place.

    I don't deny that there are serious harms, which is also why I support transhumanism and the right to a graceful exit. However, there are also deeply meaningful experiences that act as a source of inimitable value even in terrible situations for innumerable people. I don't think that this is a trivial factor. I don't think that the harms are always inescapable, and there is also a lot of resilience that people demonstrate (though voluntary life-extension can certainly help people cherish the lives they value). So, we are actually here:
    1. Starting the conditions for all happiness is necessarily (presuming that NOT starting the conditions for harms is necessary) good.

    2. On behalf of someone else who cannot ask for the good.

    3. The happiness is also not trivial.

    4. The happiness is precious and ineffably valuable, and most people do seem to value their lives.

    Happiness does matter, and I don't think that your replies change that cardinal consideration. I am not claiming that life is intrinsically valuable (just as I don't believe that life is inherently disvaluable). I only think that if it can be good to not create harms, it can also be good to create valuable experiences. Nevertheless, I don't believe that anyone should be pressurised or forced to endure a valueless existence.
  • Raymond
    649
    A huge collection of ice fish nests was discovered in the deep-sea under an antarctic ice plate. Natures last resort. The last place where sanctuary can be found. If not all energy is conversed from fossile to clean, or the energy consumption reduced, Kant leaves us nothing to do than enforce this by power. An automobile is electric but if the electricity is generated by burning fossile, it's useless. Hydrogen fuel idem dito. So close the fossile plants, accelerate fusion development, produce extra solar cells an put them on all houses, and teach the young ones more than one story. As simple as that. Money for fusion! I insist!

    Chaos will stay at bay...
  • Tobias
    430
    I am sorry I am only a domestic woman. Pay careful attention here and look for the gray that is both black or white. And know your questions are greatly expanding my own understanding of everything! You are giving me an enlightening moment of the kind that brings me to this forum. I do have a college education and I listen to college lectures daily. But I have never transitioned into the kind of educated person of which you speak. To me, your questions about having a theoretical framework, or "context of a PhD, is a language from Mars. Despite all my education, and self-education, I am still a domestic woman. And I will think I have died and gone to heaven if you are willing to explore this with me.Athena

    Well, exploring it we are already doing. I can help, at least by being someone you can throw ideas at and also by being critical. That is the academic way. I can sometimes be tough, but never out of dislike or disdain but because questioning your own and other's ideas sharply though fairly helps and makes them better. And well. I mt a prof once, she got her PhD after twenty years of being a house wife. She has her rough English accent, but she was an expert on Derrida and sharp as a whip... It is rare but it happens.

    quote="Athena;641963"]Now, what do you think education should teach us? You said "schooling, the way we mold our citizenry is a crucial aspect in the way we govern society." I said women were in control of education. Yes, the education experts tended to men. All the positions of "authority" would have been held by men, except in the one-room schools, where an 18-year-old woman was expected to give children of all ages an education, as though this were no different from any other child care. I am speaking of my grandmother's generation of teachers. Most grade school teachers were women. All education was based on liberal education. We teach children math to teach them how to think. We teach them the American mythology that is in history books. Education is about literacy and reading the classics, not about having a high-tech job. Am I conveying a feeling about education that is helpful in answering your questions?[/quote]

    Well ideally, in my point of view, education makes us happier persons who understand and can cope with the world around them. That would also mean that education tends to shift with how the world around them looks. American heroes are great but children today grow up in an international world, heck, we are even conversing here in an international forum. I only recently learned about American heroes and to be honest in my view they are quaint people... that is because I have not imbibed 'being an American' from an early age. But to be able, to hold their own in an international world the kids should know how relative those stories are and develop a keen interest in European, Chinese, South american and African heroes. They do not need to know the mytology but they need to learn how to listen, how to communicate. So what education is and should be depends on the times.

    Have you seen the movie The Reader". I saw it long ago and my memory is vague, but the gist is a German woman who is illiterate is found guilty of war crimes. She was not guilty but was hiding the fact she could not read. If she had let that be known she would have been found innocent. A man takes interest in her and when she goes to prison, he sends her audio tapes of the classics. You see, she was only following orders and that was being a good Nazi and she had no concept of independent moral judgment and refusing to follow orders. That would have depended on knowing the classics and thinking about right and wrong.Athena

    I haven't unfortunately. It was on my 'watch list' and maybe if I find it I will watch it soon. But anyway, many Nazi's were guilty, men who learned how to read and write. Nazism was one side of German history, it also had wonderful theologians, philosophers, and literary geniuses. What interests me is not the question of good and bad, but under what conditions did one education system replace the next and what were the reasons for it. There are probably no monocausal explanations for it. What were the conditions under which Prussia developed it and what was the reason for its success. To do that one needs to trace very meticulously and also with distance, how these steps took place and what were the turning points. You have the material to do so, but then you need methodology and theory...

    Why do we recoil at Nazis following orders? Why have today's prisoners who, in prison, study the classics, become changed, people? Here is a problem with Christianity- it is not Jesus saving anyone but learning good moral judgment, and social rules, good citizenship, and peer support and pressure that makes us good. When we had liberal education based on the classics and being literate, we were fulfilling the promise of the enlightenment. Education for technology does not do that! Now we have a technologically very smart society, without wisdom.Athena

    Too fast. You might well find the Prussian systems stems from enlightenment ideas. The classics themselves say little. There were atrocious wars in the past and heinous crimes, just like there are now. In fact crime cates go down, people are not worse than they were in the past. Not that I am against a classical education, but I am against easy black and white dichotomies.

    The Prussian model of government is the Prussian military order applied to citizens. This begins with Prussian generals determining the military action and precisely defining every single task that is necessary to pull this off. Once the plan is complete, the swarm of ants (army) will do exactly as planned, even if every general is killed. Unlike kingdoms, bureaucracies never die.Athena

    Indeed! Actually the same kind of military regimes were enabled everywhere in bureaucracy, in the hospitals, in areas hit by pandemics, in factories and in schools. Michel Foucault write about it brilliantly. But actually, the German military, at least in WW2 was so ruthlessly efficient because they allowed field commanders leeway into how to reach objectives. That you describe is known as Taylorism, or Fordism, the mindless deskilled working on the production line. The current 'mobilization' of citizens is far less crude and more insidious than that. We are led to accepting the goals rather mindlessly, but the means. we are taught to think about them. It is much more efficient than thinking ahead in every eventuality. As actually German lawyers learned. Prussia was also one of the first countries with something like 'science of law'. What I mean is, also 'Prussian education' developed. We are no longer in the 19th century.

    That was very inefficient and it was tied to nepotism. :gasp: You might imagine the problems with that. And this is also a social problem, a social problem the English education protected. England strongly supported the division of classes that they had and rejected Germany's education for technology because education for technology tends to be a social leveler. Suddenly with education, the commoners qualify for jobs because they have the training, AND hiring is based on merit. Merit hiring means uncle Joe who is an alcoholic and is lacks the necessary knowledge/training does not get the job, but the job is given to the man with no breeding, but the right training. Education for good citizenship and education for a good Englishman was not so different. As I stated, US education was about good citizenship, not technology and that meant the US was technological behind Germany and not ready for war. But Abraham Lincoln who grew up in the boonies could become president.Athena

    But I reckon social mobility is a good thing. Finally your class id not determine you, finally, you could thrive and develop just like everyone could. Three cheers for Prussian education no?

    Unfortunately, Eisenhower realized too late, the modern German model of bureaucracy, and education, leads to dependency on specialized experts. He warned us of that danger, but most Americans think what I am saying is a "conspiracy theory". They do not know enough about bureaucratic organization to see the problem. No matter what system is used, there will be problems. The Prussian model of bureaucracy is far superior to the one the US had. We could not have a national pension plan without that change. However, our past education, liberal or classical education is essential to our liberty and democracy.Athena

    But why is it essential? From these to paragraphs I get the impression that the German model was much more democratic, egalitarian and beneficial to the senior citizens. Specialization, well of course. Pur knowledge has increased immesely. We would not be talking had it not been for specialization and people knowing about communication and technology. I am not saying these things just for the sake of disagreement but to tease out, what 'democracu' means to you. If you ask me, these are all fundamental pillars of a functioning democracy.

    You are right about the importance of governmental development, but we might want to keep Tocqueville's 1835 (Democracy in America) warning in mind. We are becoming a despot that is opposed to the democracy we had. Or as Aldous Huxley said. "In the past, personal and political liberty depended to a considerable extent upon governmental inefficiency. The spirit of tyranny was always more than willing; but its organization and material equipment were generally weak. Progressive science and technology have changed all this completely."Athena

    I agree but to some extent. De Tocquville also stands for a rather elitist conception of democracy. And I am not favouring the rule of mister and misses Average, but to me democracy also means fair opportunities to all.
  • Raymond
    649
    There is one scientific imperative that brings disaster and natural chaos. The scientific imperative of growth. According to the second law of TD entropy in a closed system increases. If people create order ("that wonderfull growth in technology", with accompanying fairy tales of a conscious computers, star travel, genetically manipulated humanoids, androids, ?), the natural order has to decrease. Unavoidable. Already storms are more energetic (more entropy). Species get extìnct and the reason why the biologist thinks this is regrettable is that study objects are gone.
  • Athena
    1.9k
    Why should a democracy be a way of live and social organization above all others? Why shouldn't other forms of life be sensitive to the dignity and worth of the individual?Raymond

    What other system empowers individuals and lifts the individual human potential, and therefore, the collective potential of civilization?

    Three cheers for Prussian education no?Tobias

    No, I will give you a quote from James William's 1899 book, TALKS TO TEACHERS ON PSYCHOLOGY; AND TO STUDENTS ON SOME OF LIFE'S IDEALS.

    "If we reflect upon the various ideals of education that are prevalent in the different countries, we see that what they all aim at is to organize capacities for conduct. This is most immediately obvious in Germany, where the explicitly avowed aim of the higher education is to turn the student into an instrument for advancing scientific discovery. The German universities are proud of the number of young specialists whom they turn out every after year, -not necessarily men of any original force of intellect, but men so trained to research that when their professor gives them an historical or philosophic thesis to prepare, or a bit of laboratory work to do, with a general indication as to the best method, they can go off by themselves and use apparatus and consult sources in such a way as to grind out in the requestite number of months some little pepper-corn of new truth worthy of being added to the store of extant human information on that subject. Little else is recognized in Germany as a man's title to academic advancement than his ability thus to show himself as an efficient instrument of reserch."
  • Tobias
    430
    That is exactly what we do in academia nowadays... we are not trained to be revolutionaries. Part of me resents it, but another part of me sees wisdom in this slow but meticulous grinding of our lens...
  • Athena
    1.9k
    Well ideally, in my point of view, education makes us happier persons who understand and can cope with the world around them.Tobias

    I love that statement! :heart:

    American heroes are great but children today grow up in an international world, heck, we are even conversing here in an international forum.Tobias

    Yes, our heroes were quaint but culturally very important to the US, and destroying them, as we have done, has destroyed our culture. The result is being what we defended our democracy against. This change is directly related to the change in bureaucratic order. It is the difference between being an individual or a member of a group.

    Why do you think learning about the world is important? I am not saying it is not important but I am struggling with a question of identity and unity. To destroy our sense of identity and cultural agreements could have negative consequences. Wow, could this be a philosophical subject. I somewhat envy Native Americans who have strong tribal identities as this is so different from the "Lonely Crowd" in which most of us live. And that concern of the lonely crowd is the opposite of my concern in the paragraph above, that we lose individual power and the strong leaders we need. :roll:

    I don't think what I have said is comprehensible but it is confused. I am afraid this confusion is behind the intense political and social conflict we have now. I think nations can be as in great need of psychoanalysis and individuals. The US is having an identity crisis.
  • Athena
    1.9k
    That is exactly what we do in academia nowadays... we are not trained to be revolutionaries. Part of me resents it, but another part of me sees wisdom in this slow but meticulous grinding of our lens...Tobias

    My last post was not done when it posted because of a technical problem, but there is no harm in jumping to your last post. What you said is true, and because this is an international forum, I was made aware of this being an international problem. Amazingly Athens also had these problems! Perhaps we can see this as growing pains?

    I am feeling a burning need to look more deeply into Athens's history. There was strong resistance to the increasing technological focus of education in Athens and some thought this was destroying Athens, as I have concerns about our technological focus destroying the US.

    I am so grateful you are so open-minded and you are not an "either this or that" thinker. You open the windows for thinking, while many slam them shut.
  • Raymond
    649
    What other system empowers individuals and lifts the individual human potential, and therefore, the collective potential of civilization?Athena

    All non-western forms of live.
  • Athena
    1.9k
    I haven't unfortunately. It was on my 'watch list' and maybe if I find it I will watch it soon. But anyway, many Nazi's were guilty, men who learned how to read and write. Nazism was one side of German history, it also had wonderful theologians, philosophers, and literary geniuses.Tobias

    Yes, yes, and that is why I argue education so seriously! Saltwater is water, but you do not to drink it. When we are considering education, we need to consider what is the purpose of that education. Perhaps you can go my reply to Raymond that quotes James Williams.

    Liberal education is for free men. A liberal education prepares the young to be self-governing and self-directed!

    Education for technology has always been education for slaves. Our technology has advanced but it is still for slaves and their society is run by policies they do not make. This mentality wants a Hitler or a Trump, who will make life good for them. They have archy confused with liberty and favor brute force over reason. No matter how technologically smart they may be, that is not equal to wisdom. @Raymond seems to be arguing what is wrong with this.
  • Athena
    1.9k
    All non-western forms of live.Raymond

    Please, explain. Are you saying the Chinese have a better way of life? Perhaps India is the best model? Arabs are equal to Asians? Do you want to live in Afghanistan?
  • Raymond
    649
    Please, explain. Are you saying the Chinese have a better way of life? Perhaps India is the best model? Arabs are equal to Asians? Do you want to live in Afghanistan?Athena

    These countries are western in fact. Cities in India, China, Afghanistan are all alike. I mean the ways of life made impossible by western expansion. There are, or better, were, lots of them scattered around the globe. African tribes (showing themselves for money to tourists), Aboriginals (some in Australia drinking alcohol after being robbed from their land), people on islands who got cancer by nuclear testing), people in India getting used for money while their ancestors lived a happy life before the advent of the west, native Americans, people from Africa living a happy life before the west arrived, the Hopi Indians, Inuit ways of life, people living happily in nature, etc.
  • jgill
    1.7k
    That is exactly what we do in academia nowadays... we are not trained to be revolutionaries. Part of me resents it, but another part of me sees wisdom in this slow but meticulous grinding of our lens...Tobias

    Yep. I like the "little pepper-corn" analogy. I've mentioned before that the number of new research papers in math alone arriving at Cornell's ArXiv.org surpasses 250 per day.
  • Raymond
    649
    surpasses 250 per day.jgill

    As the imperative of growth dictates. Progress=growth. Litterally. More, deeper, larger, higher, faster, further, richer, shorter, thinner, fatter, boomer, or banger. "The record is broooooken!" I'm not saying this is inherently wrong, but it fucks up nature. That's the reason for the chaos in nature. And the unholy alliance of state and Science. I'm "a scientist" myself (like anybody..) but at least I realize what once was God and State is now Science and State.
  • Athena
    1.9k
    These countries are western in fact. Cities in India, China, Afghanistan are all alike. I mean the ways of life made impossible by western expansion. There are, or better, were, lots of them scattered around the globe. African tribes (showing themselves for money to tourists), Aboriginals (some in Australia drinking alcohol after being robbed from their land), people on islands who got cancer by nuclear testing), people in India getting used for money while their ancestors lived a happy life before the advent of the west, native Americans, people from Africa living a happy life before the west arrived, the Hopi Indians, Inuit ways of life, people living happily in nature, etc.Raymond

    While I agree with some of what you said, I also disagree with things you said. I sure do not see Cities in India, China, Afghanistan as the same. I also do not blame the west for all the problems.

    As the imperative of growth dictates. Progress=growth. Litterally. More, deeper, larger, higher, faster, further, richer, shorter, thinner, fatter, boomer, or banger. "The record is broooooken!" I'm not saying this is inherently wrong, but it fucks up nature. That's the reason for the chaos in nature. And the unholy alliance of state and Science. I'm "a scientist" myself (like anybody..) but at least I realize what once was God and State is now Science and State.Raymond

    That is a better explanation of what has gone wrong than blaming the west. I am not arguing disrupting aborigines' lives is not harmful or even tragic. But life is change and with the bad comes the good, such as clean water, medicine, technologies that benefit people, resulting in more people living into old age and then all the problems that come with growth. It might be unavoidable that mankind brings on the chaos that destroys life on the planet, or that one human consciousness consumes all human consciousness, making what has happened to the aboriginal people of the world just part of the inevitable change of life.

    In a philosophy forum, it is paramount that we consider the meaning of life and the best possible values. Realizing such things as feeding the very poor will increase the size of their breeding population and therefore the problem of keeping them fed and this becomes a problem for the earth as the growing population of humans consumes resources and this can mean the extinction of species and global warming. We need to wonder and attacking is not wonderful.
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