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Passions in Poetry

Meaning of Life

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Bob K
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25 posted 07-16-2009 02:49 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     It may be doing Stacy an injustice by attributing thoughts to her when you could ask her and find out.
Essorant
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26 posted 07-17-2009 01:43 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

She is a bit quiet.  No doubt she is feeling that shame we all feel when we don't take bacteria and insects into better account when talking about love.     
moonbeam
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27 posted 07-17-2009 09:42 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Ess - Voila, vous comprendez
Essorant
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28 posted 07-17-2009 11:28 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Moonbeam,

Indeed, overgeneralizing the importance of love is quite understandable, but it doesn't mean I think it should get by without argument, especially in a philosophical forum    
Ron
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29 posted 07-17-2009 11:50 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
But bacteria, trees, ants, also are and have life and therefore generalizing about life also must face the evidence of whether the generalization lives up to those things as well.

If you're going to accept the widest possible meaning for life, Essorant, you have do the same for your other terms. Like psychological, life of the mind, and yea, even love. You're trying very hard to spread a wide net for life, but still only thinking in terms of human love.

Does an ant love? They're willing to die for their queen. Doesn't that sound a lot like love? If you're going to open the discussion to every form of life, then you have to be willing to accept every form of love. And every form of life that reproduces (i.e., every form of life) does so through instinctual urgings that can very easily fall under a wider umbrella for love.


Essorant
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30 posted 07-17-2009 12:43 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Ron

I think some nonhuman lifeforms have degrees of love, but it doesn't have the importance and meaningulfness to their life as human love does to human life.  Even within humans, as Moonbeam suggested, love is greatly psychological and involves being conscious of what you are doing.  The further you depart from the human biological and psychological means to the rest of the kingdom of life, the more the importance of love ceases to be the importance of love and even love to be love.  As you yourself suggested, it predominately turns into mere urges instead of a meaningful thing.

I don't have any problem accepting love as being mostly a human "thing".  

It is very true to say love is important to human life in general, but it is not very true to say it is important to life in general.  
 
Ron
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31 posted 07-17-2009 04:55 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
I think some nonhuman lifeforms have degrees of love, but it doesn't have the importance and meaningulfness to their life as human love does to human life.

And you know this how?

Sorry, Ess, but you don't get to define one term loosely and the others substantially less so. If Stacy didn't specify human life, neither did she specify human love.
Stephanos
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32 posted 07-17-2009 11:38 PM       View Profile for Stephanos   Email Stephanos   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Stephanos's Home Page   View IP for Stephanos

Didn't we know (or shouldn't we have known), contextually, that she was talking about human life and love?  Or are we splitting hairs for the shear fun of it?  (That would never happen on a forum as disciplined as Philosophy)
th1nktw1ce
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33 posted 07-18-2009 12:17 AM       View Profile for th1nktw1ce   Email th1nktw1ce   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for th1nktw1ce

For me the meaning of life is to love all the time and love unselfishly as much as I can. I've always liked the biblical definition of love the best. I'm not a Christian either.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

When we love something or someone in some capacity of unselfishness, that thing or person becomes our meaning of life.

Essorant
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34 posted 07-18-2009 02:08 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Ron

No, the truth gets to do that.  Just because one thing (life) goes to this or that extent doesn't  mean that another thing (love) goes to the same extent as well.  Life of most lifeforms is not about love, just as life of most lifeforms is not about poetry.  These are very limited things, not some vague "urge" that happens to be in almost any living thing.

Essorant
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35 posted 07-18-2009 11:29 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Stephanos

The context was probable, but she often didn't speak in terms of the context much, therefore it was questionable.  Moonbeam didn't think it was limited to "human" either, even though Stacy said "we" a few times.  But even in a human context, conclusions and generalizations are not necessarily human.  She said "life", not "human life".  A more human context doesn't make conclusions and statement necessarily confined to that context.  Even people's generalizations about the whole universe may and sometimes are biased by the human context and condition.  It happens with life and love too,  of course.  
 
Ron
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36 posted 07-18-2009 12:05 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
Life of most lifeforms is not about love

And you know this how?

quote:
These are very limited things, not some vague "urge" that happens to be in almost any living thing.

You're the one who insists on limiting love to be just what you can understand, Ess. If you honestly believe that animals don't know love, you clearly haven't been around them enough.
moonbeam
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37 posted 07-18-2009 12:45 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Really Ron I'm surprised at you, tssk.  Humans invented the word "love" and they made it specifically to apply to only humans.  If animals want to lay claim to some feeling akin to the wondrous and unique feeling that we humans feel then they should jolly well invent their own specific word.  So there.  Honestly whatever is the world coming to.  
Ron
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38 posted 07-18-2009 02:17 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
If animals want to lay claim to some feeling akin to the wondrous and unique feeling that we humans feel then they should jolly well invent their own specific word.

They probably have, Rob. Just because I don't understand my Amish neighbor when I hear him yell across the field to someone in his native language, doesn't mean HE doesn't understand what he's saying.

I watch birds in my backyard all summer, bluebirds to goldfinches to hummers, and while I doubt they're discussing philosophy or physics, there's absolutely no doubt in my mind they're communicating with each other. I've seen (and have pictures of) a cardinal going to extraordinary lengths to "save" his seemingly trapped mate. And I watched a bluebird mourn the death of her nestlings when a sparrow got inside the box and pecked them to death. The anecdotes are legion and, to me at least, absolutely convincing.

But people don't have to watch wild animals to learn these lessons.

Just get a puppy.
Essorant
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39 posted 07-18-2009 04:56 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

The raw "parts" that may be artificially enhanced into "love" are indeed present in varying degrees, but they predominately don't live up to "love" on their own, anymore than grunting, growing grass, or spreading bacteria live up to being "poetry". Both love and poetry are predominately artistically trained behaviours that are very distinct from raw and more physical behaviours.   Animals come much closer in degrees than trees, but the further away you get among nonhuman animals from humans, and the further you get away from nonhuman animals to other living things such as flowers and trees, you find that the majority, the bacteria, the insects, the fruits and vegetables, etc. no longer have the means to live their life centered around love.  Their life is chiefly about living their life, survival and life itself, rather than specifically being about love, for they don't have the means to live it other wise.  
 
moonbeam
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40 posted 07-18-2009 05:34 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Lol Ron, you really need to get my ironic Brit soh after all this time.   My previous post was entirely a joke, I'm completely at one with you on this.  The conceit of us humans thinking we have a monopoly on "feelings" never fails to astound me.

I watched a collared dove stay beside its dead mate for nearly 6 hours the other day on the road outside our home until it too was run down by a car.  Pure Romeo and Juliet.
Grinch
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41 posted 07-18-2009 05:51 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Moon,

Id have got the bugger sooner if it had just stayed still for a while.

Bob K
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42 posted 07-19-2009 12:51 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     That what the both of you get for driving on the wrong side of the road.  Besides, it was probably a Mourning Dove.
Essorant
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43 posted 07-19-2009 01:25 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

And yet if a holocaust of humans were there the dove would not shed a tear.

Ron
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44 posted 07-19-2009 01:33 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Nor should it, Ess. Nor should it.
moonbeam
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45 posted 07-19-2009 06:15 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Grinch

Remind me to tell Sarah Palin to make Blackburn her first target when she gets her crazy mitts on the red button.  

Bob

I am sure that was meant as a pun   , but I assure you, as an ornithologist of some 45 years experience, that it was what we call a collared dove.  Although, as I know there is some confusion with US/UK species names, here is a pic:


http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/c/collareddove/index.asp
and, excuse me, but anyone who drives on the same side of the road as the frenchies must be wrong.  

Ess

Why would collared doves generally shed tears at the demise of humanity generally?  Any more than we shed tears over the eradication of some form of life that poses a threat to us like mosquitos?

But at the intimate level things change rather dramatically.  Like the dog who died by his master's side at the top of a mountain rather than desert the body.  Or the cat which faded away within a week of my gran passing on, for no discernible reason.  Or the cockerel at our nearby animal rescue centre that used to defend a blind and helpless wild rabbit against all comers and snuggle up to him at night.  I could go on for pages and pages.  Animals form loving bonds with humans and other different species with an intensity that can be just as powerful as that within species.

Essorant
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46 posted 07-19-2009 11:42 AM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

quote:
Any more than we shed tears over the eradication of some form of life that poses a threat to us like mosquitos?


Or humans?
  
moonbeam
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47 posted 07-19-2009 12:46 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Yes or humans, so what?
Bob K
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48 posted 07-19-2009 02:05 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



Dear Moonbeam,

          Yes, it was meant as a pun, but thank you for the assurance that I'm not a total bird-brain.

Yours, Bob Kaven
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