• Wayfarer
    6.3k
    Then the ontological difference is: ability to ask such questions. ‘Ontological’ means ‘pertaining to the nature of being’. And humans are language-using, rational beings - just as the OP says.

    As a matter of interest, to what category or kind does the word ‘being’ pertain? It would not generally be used in respect of inanimate objects. Elephants, horses, dogs, and so on, are arguably beings. But in normal speech, ‘being’ is usually used to designate human beings.
  • Πετροκότσυφας
    783
    Well, it's a big subject in its own right. Philosophical materialism takes various forms - Neo-Darwinian, Marxist, scientific, to mention a few. But the obvious basis of all of them, is that only material or physical objects are ultimately real. So everything can ultimately (and that word carries a lot here) be understood in terms of material forces described by physics and chemistry. Human characteristics and attributes are said to be supervenient on those fundamental realities, but explicable in terms of them. Life itself is basically understandable in terms of material interactions - physics and chemistry again.Wayfarer

    The obvious basis is not so obvious. To the point that materialism and emergentism are compatible, then everything can be thought of as physical, yet not everything can be explained in terms of physics and chemistry. There are (material) levels of explanation that are not reducible to other levels.

    Obviously none of the spiritual traditions are.Wayfarer

    In which way epicureanism and stoicism aren't spiritual traditions?


    Then the ontological difference is: ability to ask such questions. ‘Ontological’ means ‘pertaining to the nature of being’. And humans are language-using, rational beings - just as the OP says.Wayfarer

    I don't think this answers my question. Every species does things in its own peculiar way. Does that mean that every species is something more than mere animal? Or is this characterization saved just for our own peculiar way of being? If this is so, why? How doesn't it beg the question?
  • Wayfarer
    6.3k
    The differences between species are a matter for biology. The meaning of the word ‘ontology’ is ‘the nature or meaning of being’.

    Materialists say that only matter is real. If emergent properties are dependent on matter then that remains materialist.
  • Πετροκότσυφας
    783
    The differences between species are a matter for biologyWayfarer

    Indeed. So, I'd guess that the differences between language-using animals and non language-using animals would be a matter for biology.

    Materialists say that only matter is real. If emergent properties are dependent on matter then that remains materialist.Wayfarer

    Materialists say lots of things. Certainly not all materialists accept the version you present.
  • schopenhauer1
    2k
    Does it actually feel the same? And is there a balance of the two that feels even better?

    You seem to be presuming your conclusions again. What you say does not tally with either psychological science or my own experience.

    But perhaps you have proved the case for you?
    apokrisis

    This was meant as metaphorical bookends to the extremes. It encompasses all viewpoints from one extreme to the other, not presenting a stark dichotomy.

    I also think this emphasis on psychological science puts the cart before the horse. The person has to be born first. Someone chose to have the new person who then has to follow this treadmill of psychologically-defined regimen which in itself does not provide one path to some salvation- simply providing more things for people to do to fill their day (e.g. exercise, hobbies, flow activities, etc. etc.). This doesn't answer the existential riddle. Utilitarian calculus counting is not life's salvation to the problem of instrumental nature of existence. If anything, it enhances its banality in the very nature of its utilitarian counting. The philosophy of the proper, "well-adjusted" middle class gent.

    Sounds a pretty minimal idea of a life to me.

    You reduce living to some kind of consumptive activity. You seem to see no role for creation, challenge and variety.

    So again you assume your conclusions by speaking of life in as meaningless a way as you can imagine. Rhetoric 101.
    apokrisis

    Nay, it seems like you are accusing me of what I think you are proposing. This very utilitarian "science of happiness" is the epitome of the consumptive behavior. As long as we use words like "discovery", "over coming challenges" and "achievement" we can provide the ruse for the young folk that they have something they need to do, look forward, a reason why being matters. This distracts from the very philosophical grappling that takes place.

    Utopia is already the wrong answer. Perhaps the dichotomies of heaven and hell, good and evil, just don't apply to nature. Your frame of reference is already wrong.apokrisis

    That's not my frame of reference, those other other peoples. If you read carefully, I was saying I was questioning other people's use of these terms because indeed, these are non-existent, perhaps reified, unexamined terms.
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