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Discussion in 'The Sanctuary' started by reggie_jax, Jan 3, 2012.

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  1. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    sure, but lets say there are benefits to the abuse. say the abuse amounts to exploitation, which always does derive some sort of value from the abuse of others. let's say the infrastructure that's needed for the society which wants to colonize space requires a certain amount of this exploitation to get where it wants to go. then what's the right thing to do?

    notice i say what's the right thing to do, not what is needed to colonize space? that would be the 'moral' question as is currently understood. it is easy to argue that morality is objective when doing the 'right thing' is working in your favor, but does morality never demand any sacrifice?



    perhaps i was mistaken here, though i don't ultimately feel like i was trying to make the point that love (or eros) isn't necessary for a society to function. simply that you were overemphasizing its role in colonizing space. i still maintain that the barrier between these two elements is an artificial one (eros and thanatos) but if anything they both seem necessary. that is assuming i'm understanding exactly what each one encompasses correctly, which i might not be. but i'll expand on that further below.*



    theoretically you're correct. in practice, however, this trend has played itself out time and time again. war provides a sort of drastic and immediate motivation that more long term and vague goals lack in intensity.

    *but i think it's interesting that once an act willed through aggression and antagonism produces life enhancing technology it becomes an 'agent of eros,' despite having the same initial intentions that would so often be dubbed an agent of thanatos. is your morality really any less relative than mine?

    i'm aware that it appears that way, however i'm only trying to prompt you with the underbelly of our nature that you have decided is of less worth than our other half. i'm not necessarily pro-war, but i thought i'd remind you of its value.

    my relativity is not in favoring one mystical force over another, it is in maintaining the distinction between the two as artificial. and if the scenario provided were to present a case where what is commonly considered 'good' coincided with survival instinct, i dare say moral relativity would leave the bout unscathed.
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  2. Radium

    Radium f k

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    eros is necessary for things like psychological health and as a requisite to more advanced things like group cooperation and information sharing. i think we wouldnt have an ability to make technology w/o it. suppose that reality is made of layers; eros then is a very key layer that unlocks the creation of many more layers related to life on top of it.

    try to think about what thanatos and eros really are

    Thanatos - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    thanatos actually means death and to be dying; it is a destroyer. in this universe it tears down systems and creates just a vast nothingness in its wake; systems made by the life-enhacing and promoting creator, eros. i think freud was so right about the way thanatos and eros are always at war inside of us and the way they constantly rotate in and out of prominence as they fight for the ownership of our existence, because these things exist and do these same things in the physical universe too.

    the physical universe is always creating new structures, and just as it does this, its always tearing down and destroying them too. there is an eternal war of creation and destruction happening in this universe.

    so i think that humans are unique structures created by the universe. and i think that because of that we are always at war w the agents of thanatos sent out by that universe that is always trying to tear us down and destroy us.

    as far as for what is good and what is bad

    thats a very hard question. i think most things dont fall under the category of good and bad and probably are just too insignificant to gleaned by that type of gaze. eg maybe this year i like the color orange, but maybe you dont. i dont think there is a good or bad, or right and wrong, to that. and for things that are probably more severe its always going to be hard to know what is good and what is bad. humans arent omniscient and only god can be that. we have to understand that we are imperfect and thus make imperfect judgements about reality. so i think morality is relativistic in that way. i do believe in morality objectively, but i just dont think we can ever fully know that we are even actually in congruence to it. it would be hubris to ever assume that. but i dont think this stops us from having to make the right moral choices. and i dont think this stops us from trying to seek out the true morality that i believe actually is embedded physically in this universe.

    utimately tho you must make the moral choice yourself. it has to ultimately be up to you to choose in your own way what you think represents eros (life) or thanatos (destruction)

    so morality is relativistic in that sense. but i think we can reason things that promote eros and glean a sort of objective morality through that.
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  3. Radium

    Radium f k

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    yeah good points. i believe in moral objectivity - but i know too that when you hit the ground, things get very hard to know and very hard to say. but i think this a failure of human knowledge, not moral objectivity.

    i think your posts and arguments are being designed to try to deconstruct that and are trying to show what happens when we hit the ground and have to actually start making hard moral choices. so my answer is probably always going to be this: i dont know

    but i dont think this invalidates morality as an objective entity. i think it effectively shows that man is an imperfect representative of it tho.

    you mean like slaves?

    thats true but you have to prove that war is necessary to create life-enhancing systems. because we have hit the ground, and are forced to make these hard and complex choices, you have to look at context too eg war may have been necessary in a time in the past for whatever reasons that existed then, but does it mean that war is always necessary forever

    I.E. what if we created technology in the future that would get rid of the scarcity that always necessitates war? would war ever be good in that context?
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  4. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    ah, i see i was using a faulty conception of eros and thanatos this entire time. this undoubtedly has been the main source of confusion on my part. i was still thinking in moral terms, good or evil, but now it seems the duality you're referring to is between life and death, which i have to say is a hell of a lot more romantic.


    you have clearly highlighted a battle that every human could naturally find themselves on the same side of, unfortunately that side happens to be losing. and even decay and death brings forth new creations. everything we possess is made of dead stars.
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  5. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    and the only better representative is hypothetical...

    you could essentially use that imperfection of man argument to boost any relative art into the realm of hypothetical objectivity.



    sure, why not?


    i wasn't saying war itself is a necessity for progress, i was merely establishing a precedent that runs contrary to the notion that a peaceful society is optimal for technological revolutions.
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  6. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    ra, how exactly do you tie in morality to the concept of creation and destruction? i want to hear more about that.
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  7. lyricalpriest

    lyricalpriest Rap Games Dawson Creek

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    collateral moral damage is necessary..to maintain the "circle"...
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  8. breathlesss

    breathlesss Registered Sex Offender

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    this is my solution to that...

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  9. breathlesss

    breathlesss Registered Sex Offender

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    exactly...
    as that old semisonic, closing time song says

    Time for you to go back to the places you will be from....
    (that phrase's tense abnormalities are entirely intentional... you're going back to the place, that you will be from...i love that)
    ...Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end

    it's also about the ability to appreciate not suffering due to the ability to feel it, if everything was perfectly "moral" we would have no opposing concept to compare it to, it's the true reality of the joy of "triumphing of evil"...it's actually just the joy of being able to feel that "triumph" by temporarily washing off the veil of "evil" and view what the rest of the world is about

    in a perfect world, (hypothetical, no death, disaster, accident, etc.) there would be no extra elation in knowing that you currently feel better than you could, because there is no better, it is just comfortable stagnance
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  10. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    assuming i'm understanding you correctly you're saying that the universe could be reborn after its death

    the dilemma we're talking about is the fate of a specific race within the current universe, not the fate of 'life' or 'existence' itself
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  11. breathlesss

    breathlesss Registered Sex Offender

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    ah, i was considering the eternal by choice spirits as the main bit of existence, like, what i consider the data collectors, observing whatever physical life might pop up with a conscious thought process, to me the fate of our souls is the main thing, they are trying to learn from our uninhibited thoughts what they can not, and in doing so are figuring out the truth of the ethereal just as we are the tangible...

    but yea, after all the sun's are gone then, as a consistent physical race, unless they figure out a way to transform the frothing subatomic particles into a sustainable energy source...the only way even then would be to literally exit the universal boundaries that the explosion of the big bang would effect, and by doing so, then have to travel back into the the matter part of the universe once habitable again... given that the gravity of superdupermassive black holes doesn't suck up the subatomic froth as well...then, they'd have to phase out of this universal dimension and back in...paying three colorless mana...this is all true, for they have magic the gathering cards that state such
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  12. breathlesss

    breathlesss Registered Sex Offender

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    revision, the universe would not be able to rebang because the space race's matter would not be present in the rebangability process
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  13. Radium

    Radium f k

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    yup thats true and thats a good point. and there is a danger about this that i think you rightly understand

    i was waiting to say this

    this conversation me and you are having right now is actually extremely ancient. its sort of weird and funny that me and you would be repeating it through new technology so many years into the future of when it first appeared. does this mean this is a struggle that is repeating again and is going to ultimately keep repeating again and again

    this conversation was between thrasymachus and socrates

    heres a good overview on thrasymachus that i found pretty quick on google that has many points of view about what he may have ultimately represented

    Thrasymachus*[Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]

    thrasymachus is a very important person in history to try to understand. he argued that moral values are socially constructed; that they're made by whim and by fancy and not by any kind of objectivity. he argued that because of this what is right is ultimately just something created by whoever is the most powerful and whatever whim and fancy they then wish to try to enforce on reality w that power. socrates believes that this is wrong

    Thrasymachus - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    socrates does this simply by asking about the nature of these tyrants who thrasymachus believed had the right to construct morality out of their own private desires and not through following any rules set objectively by the physical universe at large. are tyrants, as are many of us too, not at mercy to the pings and pangs of their own hearts? and should morality then try to reflect whatever is happening currently in the pings and pangs of these fragile hearts?

    socrates argues that we should try to look for morality, not in the depths of our fiery hearts, that are constantly revolting and fighting in private w themselves, but instead in the physical universe where we can try to use reason as a way to search for what are its greater truths about what it ultimately means to exist. that in this way we can better avoid our own destruction.

    i dont think thrasymachus was fully wrong tho. i think part of morality is defined by whim too. but there is another part, i think a more base part of morality, that must try to reflect the physical reality of our universe too. that in this way morality has to try to be hard-linked to whats happening in the physical universe and not just only to our own whims.

    and so there are certain rules created by that universe that we have try to find and to try to follow. theres only a few examples of this that i can say i fully believe in objectively tho and honestly the rest is sort of up in the air

    like an example is a belief in love. f.e. a love-less society i think is ultimately a wrong society and i believe the universe and its systems can show this to be true

    slavery was a good example for that because we can see by example in history that slavery was actually very unnecessary. not only does it grossly violate human life - its really even pretty inefficient as a way for humans to do work in a society. more efficient is the capitalist system that uses paid workers instead of slave workers. eg these workers can contribute back into society and its economy unlike slaves I.E. they have money to pay out taxes and buy products that support more industry in that society. so doing this can boost an economy and society at large more effectively than a use of slaves can. the south lost to the north largely by that process. so logically we can glean through that example a truth about slavery being objectively just a bad thing to do and something that we should have never been trying to pursue in society.

    the same example can be true for war. that is, instead of using war as a way to get resources as a reaction to scarcity, we could have instead been trying to find ways to invalidate that scarcity. that is, instead of giving in to war and its devastating effects, we could have been trying to work on technology that reduces the effects of scarcity and the wars that it creates. i think we can reason through this that pursuing technology like that would probably be the objectively right thing to do and that neglecting pursuing that kind of technology would be an objectively wrong thing to do.

    if destructive things like slavery and war are absolutely necessitated then i think that would be a different story. but i believe that we can show that many things like that don't actually have to be. try to remember your own example about prey coming b4 predator: predators wouldnt exist unless it wasnt just so incredibly necessitated to do it. i think another objective good i can say that i probably believe in, is that we should try to look at and challenge these things that we believe are so necessitated, as when we look we may see that actually they really arent, and that we can try to make better changes to them instead of being captive to them.
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  14. Radium

    Radium f k

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    i think its just that tho we experience morality internally and know it through our own thoughts and feelings - its actually really and ultimately something created by the physical universe at large and then sent out to be represented through us and the things that we do inside of it.

    so the big difference is that, even tho it probably feels like it, i dont think that we create it, but that the universe actually created it, and creates us too to ultimately express it with it.

    a point that i talked about last post is the danger of that too. that is, because of the way human knowledge is inherently imperfect we can only ever know about any objective morality through whats really just a hypothetical version of it. so we can only ever know about any objective morality the universe may have created really on just a kind of faith.

    this is something i think socrates understood. this was why he chose to spend his life pursuing philosophy and discourse. he was actually searching for ways to get as closely to these truths that he thought had been created by the universe and to try get others to get as closely to them as the universe would permit them to be too. i think he knew this was the only way for society to ever really work.

    its paramount for society to create an effective intellectual class and for them to constantly engage in discourse about things like the true nature of morality because if they dont do that then a power-seeking tyrant(s) is going swoop in and make decisions about what he plays up as being the true nature of morality yet is really ultimately something just based on the pings and pangs of his own heart. he knew democracy was key to humanity and its ability to make the right moral choices and he knew that the growth and health of its intellectual class was key to make this a reality. and thats why he was killed.

    all these years later and i think socrates is still right about this

    and that these questions and struggles to make the right choices about morality and our future still haunt humanity

    um i think i just realized i didnt answer your question. i dont really know youre asking tho my bad
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  15. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    no doubt. this is probably one of the most repeated philosophical topics in existence.
    i wouldn't say its made by whim and fancy. i think it's actually an inherent evolutionary adaption. morality essentially has its roots in empathy/altruism imo. my assertion is that as a tool of survival which is intimately connected to our being, it is something local and provincial to the human being, and hence may not be considered an objective or universal standard.

    what does he mean by "some standard of wise rule?" does he mean that some methods of ruling are more effective than others, and thus the universe has its own standard which is enforces through results?
    i understand the moral of this story, and why socrates would consider it dangerous to leave morality up to men, but socrates did live in a very different time. the greeks weren't fully aware of man's instinctual inheritance, and thus they had to look at mystical forces in the world to close the gap.

    i have to say i can't think of a better source (in the known universe) for human morality than humanity itself. which force of nature are we meant to derive our moral wisdom from?

    but is that really an objective moral law?

    let's pretend you can scientifically prove a society needs love to prosper. is their dependance on love an issue of morality, or is it simple cause and effect?

    the concept of morality itself hinges on doing the right thing out of the goodness of your heart, not to build a better society or colonize space. that romantic quality is what people ultimately appreciate about morality, and its part of what draws them in. the other part would be the natural inclination towards empathy or altruism, i.e. that 'good feeling' you get for doing something nice. that's the closest we ever come to objective morality, imo. it's an objective (and vague) enough standard to apply pretty much across the board in human society.. yet completly irrelevant to other living organisms who dont share our same concerns. you said before that my arguments are designed to deconstruct morality, but that's not my aim. i consider it a useful practical tool for humans to utilize, i see its value for what it is and i leave it at that. true morality looks something like this, imo. the firings in the neurons of the frontal lobe where that activity is taking place is what morality looks like from an objective point of view.

    i think the main problem with objective morality is once something becomes objective it loses all of its romance. you mentioned before that in order to keep my relativist stance i was increasingly defending evil. i understand that the cost of relatvism is getting your hand dirty, but i wonder if you're aware that the price for objectivism is a cold and sterile platform on which you must dissect man's dearest and most noble badges of honor. you must completely remove the context from the moral situation, the very meat which makes the meal. morality goes from people imagining themselves in situations where they're forced to disobey moral norms and experience that horror vicariously through their imagination, to behavioral trends that are considered conducive to a better society. at that point your moral doctrine is no more than a list of directions to get from point a to point b.
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  16. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    unnecessary? inefficient? i have to say, this is the strangest criticism of the transcontinental slave trade that i've ever seen. it was an extremely lucrative industry, and they never could have built this vast empire in the new world without capitalizing on the massive sugar, cotton and tobacco industries off the backs of slave labor.

    sure, but warfare is every bit as much a struggle for power as it is a struggle for resources. it's possible we could solve the problem of scarcity, but that doesn't necessarily end conflict altogether.

    ultimately i don't think we really disagree much about how humans should actually behave. we just have different reasoning behind why they should behave that way and what it means. the arguments i have presented as counterpoints to your pro-love/peace/rocknroll agenda were merely meant to highlight that utilitarian morality cannot be objective because if 'getting shit done' sets the parameters for what is moral conduct, then slave trades and world wars could actually have a spot at the table.
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  17. reggie jax

    reggie jax Well-Known Member

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    i could agree with this to an extent in that the universe did in effect produce the scenario which lead to the development of human morality. it is inherent to us and thus we do not 'create' it. i don't believe this makes it objective, however.

    i would argue that your placement of the blame on human understanding is unjustifiable. morality is a conception based on human emotion, so far as we know. every 'objective' analysis has coincided with this assertion.

    other areas of knowledge, which are equally restricted by human understanding, have managed to have risen to what we humans designate as objective. things like hard science and math. these areas of study can only ever hope to be a rough model of reality's 'true' version, as they are inevitably filtered through the human brain and its limited perception. they are considered objective because through human analysis they can produce reliable results based on clear cut laws.

    morality is unable to replicate this feat because it is not a human replica of a true natural phenomena. it is a human conception based on human emotions which are tied to the higher objective order only in the role which they play towards humanity's survival.

    i got the idea you were arguing that the human moral conflict is an extension of a trend that dominates existence in our universe through two opposing forces, creation and destruction. i might have been mistaken in this conclusion. my question was essentially asking you to expand on this claim. i was mostly interest in hearing some external examples of this.
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  18. Radium

    Radium f k

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    yes you do make some good points and i think you might be right
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