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Passions in Poetry

Are You More Willing?

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Essorant
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50 posted 12-11-2008 06:53 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Stephanos
I agree with you about the beauty of what we do, for deeds are and ought to be measured by how well they express or treat something, especially life.  But I don't think there is such a hierarchy as far as what we are. Even being humans doesn't make us superior than other animals, in like wise neither does being more attractive make anyone more of a human.

Stephanos
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51 posted 12-11-2008 10:30 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Essorant,

Of course physical beauty doesn't make one person "better" than another.  

But I have to ask you a question ... do you eat meat or wear wool?  I don't believe for a minute that you believe that humans are equal to animals.

Stephen
Essorant
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52 posted 12-11-2008 10:58 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Stephanos,

Yes, for sure I eat meat and wear wool.  But that is not because I think other animals are inferior and humans superior.  As the sun shines more on the planet that is closer and not as much on the planets that are further, likewise my heart cares more about the race that it is closer to, as a human, the human race.  Naturally I love my mother too more than someone else's mother but that does not mean I believe she is superior as a human.  I don't care about anyone more because I think he or she is superior, but because he or she is closer to my heart, in one way or another.  

[This message has been edited by Essorant (12-11-2008 11:37 PM).]

rwood
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53 posted 12-11-2008 11:07 PM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

quote:
By "favoring the beautiful", I meant to neglect those who aren't, not to despise beauty.  Sometimes we can artificially surround ourselves with who and what we perceive to be healthy and beautiful ... and miss the greater beauty of humility.


Very true and I appreciate your mind, here. However, it’s really nice to find/encourage a good balance of humbleness and confidence in others and for oneself.

But along with the aspects of beauty, humility has facets, too. Some of those facets are not seen as virtuous to everyone: Such as the concept of freedom, tolerance, temperance, equality, etc.

quote:
You seem to be referring to religious hatred (which is rightfully criticized where it is to be found).


No, not religious hatred. Intolerance. Religion may be the unifier of a group of people, and they may use religion to back them up, but I wouldn’t say that their religion is what drives them or else they’d embrace the examples of love and tolerance within those same doctrines. I’m speaking along the terms of behaviors such as fear, envy, jealousy, prejudice, and systems like elitism and fascism, that do reject others for superficial reasons or for personal gain.

quote:
But among the religious who deems beauty as equal to pride, or despises beauty?  I can't seem to grasp a real example of what you're alluding to


Other than Lucifer?

I personally feel that God loves each of us and finds us all beautiful in our own way. It’s people who like to equate outward beauty with pride. Anything can be taken too far, and some people feel beauty is something that needs to be constantly preened or forcibly kept under wraps or made plain, again, to keep things under control, like lust or competition. Haven’t you ever heard someone say, “She thinks she is so hot.” There’s probably some sort of personal issues or insecurities going on.

Taking too much pride in one’s appearance is not only a religious faux pas, but the focus of many mythological symbolisms as well, which led to the psychological term: Narcissist.

anyway, there’s all kinds of  shallow aspects to beauty, but I think most know  there’s so much more to beautiful, just like life.


On Darwin: I don’t think he accounted for eccentrically unique behaviors of humans. We fall in love with people who have no arms or no legs. No hair or tons of it. Big and tiny people. Many of us are drawn to opposites on the opposite side of the earth with opposite colored skin. We don’t want to “voluntarily correct” them, because we love them just as they are. And we don’t always want to have kids. He lost me when he made natural selection something too convenient. Maybe the whole "survival of the fittest" was more like “how far can I get from here to find me somebody else?” I know someone ventured out, risking ridicule, ostracization, death and dismemberment to embrace different. Or maybe they were just too tired to go back.  
moonbeam
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54 posted 12-12-2008 04:25 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

quote:
Yes, for sure I eat meat and wear wool.  But that is not because I think other animals are inferior and humans superior.  As the sun shines more on the planet that is closer and not as much on the planets that are further, likewise my heart cares more about the race that it is closer to, as a human, the human race.  Naturally I love my mother too more than someone else's mother but that does not mean I believe she is superior as a human.  I don't care about anyone more because I think he or she is superior, but because he or she is closer to my heart, in one way or another.  


Well expressed Ess.  

And Stephen, I don't believe for one moment that you really think humans are superior to other life forms.  Tell me you are teasing to provoke debate!

Perhaps the word superior is unfortunate.  Is more specificity required to close the apparent gap?  Probably you could argue we are better at making cars than other species, although even that is perhaps now in doubt   .

Grinch, I need more than one coffee to think about that proposition.  Later.


[This message has been edited by moonbeam (12-12-2008 05:14 AM).]

rwood
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55 posted 12-12-2008 07:34 AM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

Beautifully and poetically said, Ess.
Stephanos
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56 posted 12-12-2008 08:45 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Essorant:

quote:
Yes, for sure I eat meat and wear wool.  But that is not because I think other animals are inferior and humans superior.


Ain't buyin it.  Though "superior" might be too clumsy a word for the subtleties involved, if you are willing to put animals to death for your culinary delight, there is a hierarchy in practice no matter your ideology.  Put your money where your mouth is.      

quote:
Naturally I love my mother too more than someone else's mother but that does not mean I believe she is superior as a human.  I don't care about anyone more because I think he or she is superior, but because he or she is closer to my heart, in one way or another.


I'm not saying you have to love Fido like your mother.  But you still treat humans who are strangers with basic moral convictions that are not extended to the animal world indiscriminately.  The gulf between our polite indifference to a stranger, and our slay-and-eat approach to animals, is too large (and radically different) to explain by mere proximity among equals.


Reg:
quote:
Haven’t you ever heard someone say, “She thinks she is so hot.” There’s probably some sort of personal issues or insecurities going on.


Yes but it is rare that it is said because of someone's looks ... but rather about someone's attitude.  Sure, sometimes such a statement is petty, or stems from jealousy.  But it is nonetheless true that beauty is a temptation to arrogance (which as you've already pointed out is not beautiful).


quote:
Taking too much pride in one’s appearance is not only a religious faux pas, but the focus of many mythological symbolisms as well, which led to the psychological term: Narcissist.


And not without good reason, I think.  Don't misunderstand.  I love beauty ... even physical beauty.  


Moonbeam:
quote:
Perhaps the word superior is unfortunate.  Is more specificity required to close the apparent gap?  Probably you could argue we are better at making cars than other species, although even that is perhaps now in doubt


You're right.  Superior doesn't exactly capture it.  Nonetheless my view of humanity possessing a significant aspect of divine likeness (imago Dei) that the animal world does not, is more consistent with the practices of most people, whatever their ideology is.  

Stephen
moonbeam
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57 posted 12-13-2008 03:44 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam



quote:
is more consistent with the practices of most people

You are almost certainly right.  Which statistic however results I suspect from an amalgam of selfish convenience and an inability to think through, or disinterest in, the arguments.  As you know, majority opinion isn't a certain indicator of objective rightness.

I don't understand your problem with wool.  And, as you know from the other thread, I view any killing as wrong, even killing to eat (albeit a lesser wrong that hunting for pleasure); we do wrong; suffer it to be so for now, it will change, as other wrongs have changed.

And I certainly don't accept that imago Dei the Chain of Being or indeed any facet of Judeo-Christian metaphysics, or for that matter, other traditions such as Greek humanism or Cartesian dualism, provide evidence of human superiority.
Stephanos
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58 posted 12-13-2008 07:32 AM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

MB:
quote:
And I certainly don't accept that imago Dei the Chain of Being or indeed any facet of Judeo-Christian metaphysics


I already knew that.  I only said that pragmatically you are more consistent with it, than with your own view.

quote:
You are almost certainly right.  Which statistic however results I suspect from an amalgam of selfish convenience and an inability to think through, or disinterest in, the arguments.  As you know, majority opinion isn't a certain indicator of objective rightness.


So people are too wicked and ignorant to see what is "right"?  From your words it would seem you're closer to Christian orthodoxy than you think ... sounds similar to Original Sin and Divine Law.  


Stephen
Susan Caldwell
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59 posted 12-13-2008 10:16 AM       View Profile for Susan Caldwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Susan Caldwell

"...and your perception would be someone who looks like me??"

I cannot compete with your lovely wife.

"too bad ignorance isn't painful"
~Unknown~

moonbeam
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60 posted 12-13-2008 12:34 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

quote:
quote:And I certainly don't accept that imago Dei the Chain of Being or indeed any facet of Judeo-Christian metaphysics

I already knew that.  I only said that pragmatically you are more consistent with it, than with your own view.

~chuckling~ Now don't be naughty Stephen   .  Quote in context.  I was talking specifically about the ability of Judeo-Christianity to address the question of human superiority.  Of course I'm consistent with much of Christian thought, I was raised in it, and accept much of the morality, if not the theology.
quote:
    quote:You are almost certainly right.  Which statistic however results I suspect from an amalgam of selfish convenience and an inability to think through, or disinterest in, the arguments.  As you know, majority opinion isn't a certain indicator of objective rightness.

So people are too wicked and ignorant to see what is "right"?  From your words it would seem you're closer to Christian orthodoxy than you think ... sounds similar to Original Sin and Divine Law.  


"Wicked and ignorant" is far too Old Testament, to the point where it changes my meaning. "Selfish, lazy, disinterested or intellectually unable" is more the mark.  I don't condemn people as sinners for not having the inclination or ability to reason their way out of subjectivity - that would indeed be very fire and brimstone.  I suppose there ARE people out there who reason the position out, mentally accept that other beings are not inferior, and then go out and deliberately persecute them for kicks.  But the vast majority just go along with the prevailing mood without even thinking about it much, it doesn't make them wicked and ignorant.  I guess it's back to the slave trade analogy again.  
Essorant
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61 posted 12-13-2008 01:05 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Stephanos,

Did you forget about this thread already?

"It makes sense to say that humans are most important to humans.  But it doesn't make sense to say humans are most important to the animal kingdom or to the world."
quote:
if you are willing to put animals to death for your culinary delight, there is a hierarchy in practice no matter your ideology.  Put your money where your mouth is.  


It is not a hierarchy Stephanos, but a relationship.  Since we are humans our relationship with humans is obviously more important than our relationship with other animals.   It is not that all animals are not equal, but that relationships are not.  Consider how relationships differ among humans, not because these are better than those, but because these get along better with those.  That kind of distinction is only the more apparent when we consider the relationships with human and other humans, in contrast with humans and other animals.

quote:
The gulf between our polite indifference to a stranger, and our slay-and-eat approach to animals, is too large (and radically different) to explain by mere proximity among equals.


Again since we are humans it is humans and our relationship with humans that are both naturally and artfully much more important to us and therefore we do as much as we may to respect and protect us foremost.  It is not because other animals are inferior, but because human and human relationships are naturally more appropriate and more important to humans.

[This message has been edited by Essorant (12-13-2008 03:14 PM).]

 
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