• Book273
    65
    Abstaining from procreation; as a basis for the reduction of suffering, from the perspective that that which remains unborn cannot suffer, is, when extrapolated forward, a fantastic logic for mass murder as a means to reduce universal suffering. Which is entertaining, but largely unsupported by...well almost everyone. Suffering is based on perspective of the individual choosing to accept that what they are experiencing is suffering.

    By way of example: I have been very fortunate in my life to have experienced extremely good sport fishing. I have fly fished Alaska for salmon and have had days that at the end of the day my arms were only semi-functional because of all the fish I had caught that day (I release nearly all I catch). On the less productive days I am able to enjoy the glacier fed river I am in, the beautiful scenery, and life at it's more relaxing pace. Maybe I catch a fish, maybe I don't, but I chose to enjoy and embrace the other, more leisurely activities going on at the time. My Nephew on the other hand has also experienced this high level of fishing, however, when the fish aren't biting he is angry, disappointed and unable to appreciate anything going on around him. He is choosing to suffer, despite having a plentitude of amazing things around him that he could enjoy, if he chose to. His birth has very little direct effect on his amount of suffering, his choices directly cause his suffering.

    However, without suffering there is no joy. I have lots of really good drugs that will relieve you of all your suffering, they will also relieve you of everything that makes you you. So will a well placed bullet.

    I suggest that suffering promotes growth, which, eventually, leads to acceptance and internal peace.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    Abstaining from procreation; as a basis for the reduction of suffering, from the perspective that that which remains unborn cannot suffer, is, when extrapolated forward, a fantastic logic for mass murder as a means to reduce universal suffering. Which is entertaining, but largely unsupported by...well almost everyone.Book273

    Oft-stated response. My reply to a similar line of reasoning is here: https://thephilosophyforum.com/discussion/comment/472633 . Basically, I don't view ethics as based on some aggregate utilitarian construct whereby the greatest good is had for greatest number, or anything like that.

    Suffering is based on perspective of the individual choosing to accept that what they are experiencing is suffering.Book273

    Yet, it is quite a fact that all individuals suffer in some way, and certainly the game of life is thrust upon a new individual to navigate and then have to figure out how to "choose to accept". I force you to play a game you don't want to play, and then tell you some horseshit like, "But it is up to you to figure out how to accept the situation", like I'm a freakn' Obi Won Kenobi.. Sounds like horseshit post-facto rationale to me for justifying thrusting the game on someone. Also it is gaslilghting..making them seem the crazy one for not accepting the game.

    I suggest that suffering promotes growth, which, eventually, leads to acceptance and internal peace.Book273

    Again, read some of my responses to others on this thread with similar reasoning for "No pain, no gain" mentality. It is always YOUR fault for not understanding how the game works, and then it is proposed you just kill yourself for not being able to accept and cope properly. Try again, try harder.
  • Book273
    65
    Actually I accept the "kill yourself if you are that upset about things" perspective. Either play the game as best you can, or, check out and end the game. But spending a life time bitching about it seems wasteful, unless one enjoys the bitching. However, if that is the case, they are playing the game anyway.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    It is an experience of caregiving.schopenhauer1

    There are probably many reasons people desire dependents. And in nearly all cases, I would say that the acquisition of a dependent is the result of impulse, rarely is it founded securely on solid rationale and well-thought-out reason. I'm quite confident most people are on autopilot nearly all the time.

    No one has the perspective change that perhaps it is not good to make another being endure, and deal with existence in the first place.schopenhauer1

    I don't know if it's that simple. Young women seem to have an insatiable desire to procreate. I cannot think of one young woman that is totally put off from the thought of giving birth. The feminine is more immediate than the masculine, so it does not consider the course of history in its desire to procreate. The masculine has a stronger affinity towards the historical and speculative, but the feminine has the power to draw the masculine into immediacy. Translated, men want what women have, and to get it, they ultimately must give the woman what she wants, and what does the woman want more than anything else.... a baby. It's all part of God's sick plan.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    However, if that is the case, they are playing the game anyway.Book273

    True enough.. I actually think philosophical pessimism can be a communal catharsis for helping cope with suffering. Bitch away, bitch away, bitch away.. Just don't blow smoke up my ass by accepting the situation. Everyone has their own sufferings and death by a thousand cuts...
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    Bitch away, bitch away, bitch away.. Just don't blow smoke up my ass by accepting the situation. Everyone has their own sufferings and death by a thousand cuts...schopenhauer1

    Right! Remember Fightclub:

    You are not special. You're not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You're the same decaying organic matter as everything else. We're all part of the same compost heap. We're all singing, all dancing crap of the world. — Tyler Durden
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    There are probably many reasons people desire dependents. And in nearly all cases, I would say that the acquisition of a dependent is the result of impulse, rarely is it founded securely on solid rationale and well-thought-out reason. I'm quite confident most people are on autopilot nearly all the time.Merkwurdichliebe

    Yep, I suspect in a lot of cases you are right. Cultural habits and expectations instilled, without much reflection for why they hold these expectations, why society might be perpetuating them, how they are being influenced by them and perhaps manipulated by it.

    I cannot think of one young woman that is totally put off from the thought of giving birth.Merkwurdichliebe

    I can and have met some. It's not an instinct as much as a cultural expectation and a personal feeling of losing out on the "caregiving of my genetic offspring" experience. I don't equate that with other animals that procreate more because "It's that time of the season" and then go into immediate caregiving mode, literally without reflection due to inability to do so and deliberate on the matter like a human can.

    The feminine is more immediate than the masculine, so it does not consider the course of history in its desire to procreate. The masculine has a stronger affinity towards the historical and speculative, but the feminine has the power to draw the masculine into immediacy. Translated, men want what women have, and to get it, they ultimately must give the woman what she wants, and what does the woman want more than anything else.... a baby. It's all part of God's sick plan.Merkwurdichliebe

    Interesting.. Not sure it always works like that. I've heard of the man wanting a child and the woman being lukewarm but willing to go along with it. I can certainly see it going that way a lot of the time though, but that may be more a product of culture. Do you have strong evidence that women are "immediate" and men are "speculative".. These sound like really stereotypical tropes more than reasoned or empirical claims.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    Right! Remember Fightclub:

    You are not special. You're not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You're the same decaying organic matter as everything else. We're all part of the same compost heap. We're all singing, all dancing crap of the world.
    — Tyler Durden
    Merkwurdichliebe

    Ha, well I didn't want to state it that dramatically. That is more to wear the person's identity down. But the sentiment may be similar. The theme being that we are all born here and suffer. Let us look at the situation for what it is and not constantly gaslight it into your non-acceptance is the reason you suffer. No, life is about suffering and then coping with it. That in itself should be examined as to whether this is good in the first place, not gaslighted and then robotically overlooked for the next generation, and the next, etc. as if this answer is then an excuse to keep perpetuating the situation.. oh see. I can create life with suffering, because you see if they don't like it, it will be their fault.. You see what is happening here?
  • Book273
    65
    you could have saved space and simply blamed women for everything. Heavy stereotyping in your perspective.

    I have known many women, young and old, who do not, and have not, desired children. I know many men that have.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    you could have saved space and simply blamed women for everything. Heavy stereotyping in your perspective.

    I have known many women, young and old, who do not, and have not, desired children. I know many men that have.
    Book273

    Do you even read my posts? I said the same thing in response to him.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    Yep, I suspect in a lot of cases you are right. Cultural habits and expectations instilled, without much reflection for why they hold these expectations, why society might be perpetuating them, how they are being influenced by them and perhaps manipulated by it.schopenhauer1

    Totally the case.

    I can and have met some. It's not an instinct as much as a cultural expectation and a personal feeling of losing out on the "caregiving of my genetic offspring" experience. I don't equate that with other animals that procreate more because "It's that time of the season" and then go into immediate caregiving mode, literally without reflection due to inability to do so and deliberate on the matter like a human can.schopenhauer1

    I would imagine that such women would be quite undesirable from the superficial man's perspective, but that is not important.

    Perhaps you are right, that it is a part of aquired conditioning from an historically embedded culture, but I don't see women giving off that impression. But I cannot ignore that women are tightly engaged with their immediacy, and being that every normal young woman possesses the capacity to procreate, the right to bear progeny is immediately justified for each woman, justified apriori and without reason. The idea of caregiving is merely antecedent to having the baby, it is built into the charm of child bearing for the woman.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    you could have saved space and simply blamed women for everything. Heavy stereotyping in your perspective.Book273

    Ok fine. I blame women for everything, responsible for Hitler and sunsets alike.

    What's wrong with stereotyping, it helps to weed out the hypersensitives (ironically, the most stereotypical people that exist, fuck em).

    I have known many women, young and old, who do not, and have not, desired children. I know many men that have.Book273

    Yeah I've known men that have too. And any women that I've ever met that were hardlined about not having children ever, I can't remember. Though I'm quite certain, they were probably either ugly, or fucked in the head, or old and expired.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    No, life is about suffering and then coping with it.schopenhauer1

    Right on!

    That in itself should be examined as to whether this is good in the first place, not gaslighted and then robotically overlooked for the next generation, and the next, etc. as if this answer is then an excuse to keep perpetuating the situation.. oh see. I can create life with suffering, because you see if they don't like it, it will be their fault.. You see what is happening here?

    It is a dire situation. Generation after generation passing on a gradually declining ethos. Do you really think such a monumental thing can be overcome, and in a single generation? I don't know, kinda seems like wishful thinking. I think it's better to accept that humanity will ultimately consume itself, then mock it all for its incorrigible stupity.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    Do you have strong evidence that women are "immediate" and men are "speculative".. These sound like really stereotypical tropes more than reasoned or empirical claims.schopenhauer1

    I do have evidence, but nothing statistical if that is what you require. But you can find out yourself by simply talking to men and women. Just ask them about babies, and you will see a contrast. Show them a baby and you will really understand what I mean.
  • Book273
    65
    I think it's better to accept that humanity will ultimately consume itself, then mock it all for its incorrigible stupity.Merkwurdichliebe

    You forgot to make popcorn while you watch the show. Of course humanity will consume itself, it consumes everything else and is nondiscriminatory that way.
  • Merkwurdichliebe
    1.7k
    You forgot to make popcorn while you watch the show. Of course humanity will consume itself, it consumes everything else and is nondiscriminatory that way.Book273

    You're right, popcorn will make it better.



    That is a good point you bring up. How is it that people are guilty of the most heinous discrimination in every matter of life, but are completely nondiscriminatory when it comes to the question of how best to live? Maybe the best way to live is to set up the subsequent generation for failure. Why not?
  • Book273
    65
    We choose what is easy. Those that would pursue a right path, no matter the difficulty of said path, elicit such hatred in the rest that those seeking rightness are destroyed. Ever notice that "do the right thing" and "obey" are very nearly interchangeable? As far the person telling you to do the right thing is concerned anyway. Every path has an exception, every rule has a proviso allowing it to be ignored, and therefore nothing has consistency. Follow the rules and obey...except when you don't eh.

    Clear as mud. We aren't setting up future generations for failure so much as guaranteeing we cannot succeed ourselves. Enjoy the show.
  • NOS4A2
    3.9k


    It prevents future suffering, not alleviates current ones. True, it literally helps no "one". The last part is just a straw man argument you are trying to knock down. I never stated how noble people are for not procreating, and how amazingly rewarded they should be. That is your false attribution.

    It doesn’t prevent suffering. It prevents birth. It prevents life. But no, it doesn’t present suffering any more than cutting your thumb off prevents a thumbnail.

    I never stated that you stated how noble people are for not procreating. The false attribution is yours.
  • Outlander
    761
    You have to have suffering or pain or whatever it is for some gain. Again, just because that is the reality, doesn't mean it is then automatically a good thing. That is what I am trying to decouple from what seems to be your presumption there.schopenhauer1

    I guess you could play a video game with all items unlocked, infinite health, ammo, etc. and still find some entertainment value from just going around and following the storyline. But would you really? I wouldn't call existence good or bad in comparison to some unknown construct made up on the spot just for sake of debate, it's simply "what is". What is your ideal reality you describe like exactly? No pain? I wouldn't be able to tell if I'm carrying too much or exposed to too much heat until my arms snap or flesh singes? Or would that just not happen and we'd all be supermen. Or just magically healed shortly after? If we're all super than technically no one would be. What about becoming trapped somewhere? Can we teleport out? Boredom? We'd all just be insanely fascinated by the slightest thing like a drop of water dripping from a faucet or some inllectual way like how paint drying actually is pretty interesting scientifically? How would this work?
  • Valentinus
    838

    Is the choice necessarily a presumption? Much generation happens without a lot of consideration. Some happens with care and the responsibility to do what one can to help.

    Your position does not distinguish between different forms of life in this regard. We are all just bunnies fucking in order for the species to survive whatever is above them in the food chain.
  • Alvin Capello
    88
    Work towards utopia, and prevent birth, so do both.schopenhauer1

    That can't be right though; a utopis that no one can experience is not a utopia at all.
  • Alvin Capello
    88
    Any attempt to implement utopia, whether technologically based or not, necessarily requires some measure of tyranny.Merkwurdichliebe

    This is almost trivially disproven. A utopia that is reached without any measure of tyranny certainly does not violate any law of logic, and it also does not violate any law of physics. So already the idea is both logically and physically possible, and I would be willing to argue that it violates no other laws of any other kind either. So I'm quite comfortable with asserting that the idea is possible in every sense of that term. Saying that utopia "necessarily" requires tyranny of some kind is surely incorrect.

    It is totally absurd to merely consider the possibility of a system that perfectly fits every single individual, free of conflict and injustice.Merkwurdichliebe

    Of course it isn't, the idea is perfectly plausible. Furthermore, thinking about how we might get there can and does have very many interesting applications to current scientific research (just consider the current work being done in AI, futurology, the SENS Foundation, etc. Almost all of the work strives toward the utopian future). To say that it is "totally absurd" is obviously false and can be empirically disproven with ease.

    And even to imagine such a fictitious state invokes imagery of an excruciatingly boring and meaningless existence.Merkwurdichliebe

    To you maybe, but not to me. I believe that such a state would be far more exciting than our current state.
  • Book273
    65
    Show me a field of people without strife and I will show you field of corpses. Utopia is a pipe dream. Enough drugs will get you there, until the drugs run out.
  • Alvin Capello
    88
    Show me a field of people without strife and I will show you field of corpses. Utopia is a pipe dream.Book273

    It's a bit difficult to discern an actual argument here, but you seem to be saying that utopia will never be achieved in the future because it has not already been achieved. But this is obviously fallacious reasoning. It would be like if someone living in the year 1968 had said "Humans walking on the moon is a pipe dream. If this were really possible, we would have already done it." Or it would be like if someone living prior to the 1950's said "A vaccine for polio is a pipe dream. If such a thing were possible, we would have discovered it already."

    The mere fact that something has yet to happen does not at all demonstrate that that thing is a pipe dream.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    It doesn’t prevent suffering. It prevents birth. It prevents life. But no, it doesn’t present suffering any more than cutting your thumb off prevents a thumbnail.NOS4A2

    It prevents suffering because it prevents birth. You are implying that this is drastic. The trillions of unborn babies not being born is not drastic. Cutting off a thumb to prevent a thumbnail (which doesn't even make sense) is drastic, yes.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    What is your ideal reality you describe like exactly? No pain? I wouldn't be able to tell if I'm carrying too much or exposed to too much heat until my arms snap or flesh singes? Or would that just not happen and we'd all be supermen. Or just magically healed shortly after? If we're all super than technically no one would be. What about becoming trapped somewhere? Can we teleport out? Boredom? We'd all just be insanely fascinated by the slightest thing like a drop of water dripping from a faucet or some inllectual way like how paint drying actually is pretty interesting scientifically? How would this work?Outlander

    I don't know what that would look like, but it's not this one. The fact that I can "know" and compare states of affairs of this world with possible other ones is enough. I don't need those other words as a possibilities. But using my imagination hmm..

    There can be universes that you can dial in as much pain as you want and leave it if you don't want it anymore. Thus enough pain to make a work out good, and games and such, but then turn it off when you don't want that anymore.

    There can be universes where you don't need any dips in anything to have joy. Joy just comes from being alive, but you are also fully aware and intelligent of anything in this world but without the need for "No pain, no gain" coping mechanisms that we try to tell ourselves is necessary because.. well, do we have any other choice?! There is pain.. and there is positive psychology that can come from the fact that it isn't going anywhere. Thus we NEED the pain....

    I mentioned a long time ago real utopia is actually something like having no desire whatsoever. This is something akin to nirvana. It would an existence of complete wholeness or nothingness.

    Also, your little revisionism discounts real suffering. Suffering that is just pain but with no joy that comes from it other than getting out of the pain. You just want to get through it.
  • schopenhauer1
    4.8k
    Is the choice necessarily a presumption? Much generation happens without a lot of consideration. Some happens with care and the responsibility to do what one can to help.

    Your position does not distinguish between different forms of life in this regard. We are all just bunnies fucking in order for the species to survive whatever is above them in the food chain.
    Valentinus

    That isn't my position. I am not sure where you are getting that based on my response. What do you mean what one can to help?
  • NOS4A2
    3.9k


    It prevents suffering because it prevents birth. You are implying that this is drastic. The trillions of unborn babies not being born is not drastic. Cutting off a thumb to prevent a thumbnail (which doesn't even make sense) is drastic, yes.

    I’m not implying it’s drastic. In fact, insofar as anti-natalism involves no one but the one practicing it, I think it is completely mild. I’m implying that preventing life in order to prevent suffering is nonsensical. It suspiciously leaves out other aspects of the human condition. You’d deny the entire gamut of human experience so as to avoid one degree of it. Someone could just as easily come along and say that you’re preventing joy and laughter and love. I just think it’s a stupid argument, almost a fallacy of composition.

    The anti-natalist should be honest and admit that his principles are born from fear, not virtue. Only then could he ever hope to grapple with them. After all, as an ethic, anti-natalism turns out to be little more than a principle of self-concern.
  • khaled
    1.6k
    I thought I promised myself not to waste any more time on threads like these because they go nowhere but here I go again.

    You’d deny the entire gamut of human experience so as to avoid one degree of it.NOS4A2

    And this is not unusual. When an experience can harm someone we don't do it, even if it can benefit them as well. I'm pretty sure you'd object if I used your money to buy you a new house because I thought you would like it without asking you. Even though there is a chance you like the house.

    The anti-natalist should be honest and admit that his principles are born from fearNOS4A2

    I'd call "fear of harming others" responsibility.
  • Valentinus
    838

    I understand your position to be that our form of life as humans should come to an end because it involves bringing suffering to sequential generations. We are responsible for their suffering by giving birth to them.

    Whatever merit that argument has in pointing out what is in each of our control or not, it has no room to distinguish different ways to be a parent or promote institutions that build up those new people. Standing outside of those concerns is its own kind of irresponsibility. If the most important matter becomes proving that all reproduction is ultimately guilty of inflicting risk to future generations, it cannot be important that one family nourishes what another spoils or that education builds up or breaks down persons.

    And those issues are what is important to those who bring new people into the world.
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