Been a While - A few Questions

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by Gatekeeper, Oct 14, 2019.

  1. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper Shades of Reason

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    May I jump in? I'm loving the discussion. Compassion, empathy, survival ... who what is the strongest, fittest and why? It may be a collective as it has always been. From the beginning stages of life all the way up through each level and organism and creature on through to atmosphere conditions and which adapt or evolve enough to survive the changes. My guess is we're fairly resilient creatures as are many other life forms. Then there's always a circle of life type of reality ... to keep it simple "Food". Who eats who and then who eats you and so forth. So, where does compassion come into play? families and those who are needed to further propagate the unit. It's like this with damn near everything. How can I help you help me sort of reality. Does it matter who can beat their breast the hardest of bite the hardest or make the quickest kill? No, but cooperation within a unit will always make the unit more capable effective and efficient. If it's just dog eat dog then there may end up being a last dog standing who ends up all alone and without a way to survive at all. Lions and prides and civilization (when hierarchy has been established) tend to work out decent enough, but what if there were a better balance within the hierarchy? Ever hear the phrase too many chiefs not enough indians? What if the paradigm shift in mentality shifted towards balance, equality, and knowing our strengths and the strength's of others and respecting them? It might would turn out umm ... pretty good.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
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  2. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Yes, thank you. I get tribalism. In tribal society a person is essentially required to share everything, first with immediate family, then with the extended family -- the kraal -- and then with the tribal collection of kraals.

    There is no great distinction between rich and poor, although one might have a few more cattle than another. In effect the good of the tribe comes above the good of the individual. Tribal marriage laws and justice are to protect the tribe as a whole.

    But if I'm from tribe A and you are from tribe B, then not only can I lie dying in the street while you step over me, but I am fair game for you to kill or enslave me and take my cattle and land, etc. I am not really a person to you.

    Thus when the Israelites found themselves strong enough to exterminate other tribes, they went ahead and did it. That was just the way things went along in tribal societies.

    So we are talking about the good Samaritan here: compassion and empathy extending beyond the tribal boundary?
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
  3. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper Shades of Reason

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    In a civil society yes ... we have our units, then beyond our units or "tribes" are other units or tribes, x how ever many across wherever we may roam. With that being said, it makes much more sense to cooperate, organize efforts, and at attempt to co-exist productively ... not just peacefully. Say you're tribe is only about your tribe, and the other tribes are about every other tribe also, how long do you think your tribe will last given it's only about that one unit? Say we have America, and outside America we have other countries who are all about cooperation and getting things back to great and finding peaceful resolutions and what not, then on the flip side of that we have other nations or countries who are in the conquer and rule department ... Which would be best? The conquer and rule nations ... or the cooperate and make it all great ones?
     
  4. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Yes. But in a world that needs unity to deal with problems like the destruction of the Amazon forest, we are instead seeing a tide towards nationalism and tribalism, fear of the 'other' and so on -- often under the abused banner of religion?
     
  5. Ahanu

    Ahanu Well-Known Member

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    You can even see examples across different species of animals. Moses (not to be confused with the prophet) was a bird that lost its brood, and it used its maternal instincts to "help" a motherless kitten, feeding it worms and bugs on a regular basis. The friendship between the cat and the bird lasted for a few years.

    Altruistic behavior can be found in South American bats. They go out at night, soak up blood from cattle, and return to regurgitate some of their food for those who stayed in the cave. They will share with any other bat in the cave regardless of whether or not they are close relatives. The bats keep tabs on who is generous with their food, and, if those generous bats ever fall into a case of bad luck in the future and are unable to hunt, they are the first to be cared for by other bats. Here selflessness serves an evolutionary purpose in increasing the chances of a generous bat's survival. But natural selection doesn't make every bat generous. Why? The strange thing is that these bats have an elaborate social network in which they react one way or another to generous and ungenerous bats. Perhaps it's an example of "choice" in the animal kingdom.
     
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  6. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Ok, well this is a bit of a closed system. It is a bit like prison where if Joe gets a carton of cigarettes he is wise to give them to the cell boss, who will give him two or three packs for himself, and distribute the rest? When someone else gets sugar, Joe will get his bit from it.
    This is the good Samaritan: altruism with no selfish purpose? Why?
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2019
  7. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    Ok, on consideration, perhaps the latter example -- the bird and the kitten -- is not an demonstration of pure altruism but is a bit like a childless woman who pampers a lapdog, ties a bow in its hair, etc. It is some sort of a relief mechanism?
     
  8. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper Shades of Reason

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    Sometimes abused, but not always ... more like often abused but not always. I agree it's a delicate situation, so what are the options aside from revelation or an exudus from, or the typical fight fight fight to no good end? I prefer either the revelation of truth or an exudus, but then the complications with the first are so many it seems damn near impossible to overcome. If an exudus, it's again a fight fight fight mindset and people get their feelings hurt and faith lost ... kinda ... and a great deal of doubt and tribulation. Truth is so damn easy. so maybe a coupling or a reconciliation of sorts, or rather a merging or marriage if you will kind of event would be a better route. I don't know ... What I do know is I'm tired of defending when those I defend continually come against. Maybe it best for me to just live my life, do what I do, eat drink be happy and quit banging my head against brick walls (figuratively speaking) and just let some things be.

    It's easier to live a truth than to defend a religion and when the truth you're living seems contradictory to said religion, it gets even more complicated. So, I guess it'd be best to live and let live until I gotta bite back ... If I gotta bite back at all. Anyway, the post seems a little off topic, so lets get back to religion and abuse and civility, humanity, and potential progress. What's the right way in contrast to the wrong way? What about moral values and societal values and family values and can there ever be any type of middle ground that enables all to be free and not impose wills on others? Is a division on the docket? A separation of paradigms and mindsets and values? If so, how would it work?
     
  9. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper Shades of Reason

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    In reply to the bat post and altruism ... It makes sense until some find the semi selfless acts to be easily abused as in the generous ones often times get taken advantage of. In relation to humans this is damn near status quo and I don't see much a change taking place in that behavior. Sometimes certainly, but when the change doesn't occur it screws a lot of people over and leaves them jaded, frustrated, unappreciated, and bitter. As above I'll do a so below ... Maybe division is the only way to remedy much of anything and force change by putting like minded together. Then again, that could lead to a dog eat dog and very violent reality for the abusers ya know?
     
  10. KnowSelf

    KnowSelf Active Member

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    Is it possible we are born/created to carryout acts and deeds for purposes we may or may not be aware of?
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    I don't think so.

    There are some I know, born into privilege, who breeze through life with hardly care, sometimes inflicting damage on those around them. It's not some greater plan, it's just ignorance and disinterest. It's the question saints and sages have struggled with. Whole books in the Bible are meditations upon why the bad flourish and the good suffer.

    There are some I know, one in particular, who seems to have been born with broad shoulders and nature seems to have visited a disproportionately unfair amount of crap on those. If she's working off some karmic debt, then the whole system is insidious and unfair. (Christians get told off for suggesting a hell in which the sufferer can do nothing but suffer. Karma is the same thing, but without reason or understanding — at least the Christian sinner knows why s/he is suffering) Nor do I quite buy the idea that a loving God says, the more shit you can shovel, the more shit I'll send your way ...

    In very, very rare occasions, it seems, someone is born for a greater destiny, but I'd have to say those are so few they rank among the miraculous?

    Above all else, it seems to me, this is a world governed by contingency.

    Shit happens.

    It just does, there's no 'greater purpose' being served, no 'evil genius' working behind the scenes. If anyone ever needed to pooh-pooh the idea of some Illuminati global conspiracy, then the administrations of our two countries provide ample evidence of that! In fact, they evidence the worst aspect of democracy — letting the people decide, when 'the people' invariably, collectively, act out of self-interest. :eek: As someone said, democracy is the best worst form of govt (or was it the worst best?)

    Religion, spirituality, is not about God pulling strings. It's not about fairy godparents magicking everything better. It's no longer, thank God, my God kicking the crap out of your God (or it shouldn't be).

    it's about getting by.
     
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  12. KnowSelf

    KnowSelf Active Member

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    it's about getting by.[/QUOTE

    I agree about getting by, however, the hugeness of all life may or may not indicate a master plan is unfolding progressively forward. Whether true or not I am comforted in believing there is a master plan and we are all part of it.

    Thus my purpose in asking:
    "Is it possible we are born/created to carryout acts and deeds for purposes we may or may not be aware of?

    Most of all it is complicated and cannot be accurately defined.
     
  13. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Do you mean "possible" in the sense of "imaginable, possible to imagine"? Then I'd agree. Anything is possible in this sense.

    If you intended "possible" to mean "at all likely", then, no, I don't believe that, and the thought does not comfort me. I'm not into masters with master plans...

    But I'm all for setting up our own plans, master- or not. The vast range of possibilities grants us this freedom. And I take great comfort in this thought.
     
  14. KnowSelf

    KnowSelf Active Member

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    I am torn between the concept of who gets the breaks in life and who does not. it is a fact beautiful people recieve more opportunities in life than non-beautiful people. it may not seem fair, however; I believe life itself is about checks and balances of a bigger picture that perpetuates life until life as we understand it to be ceases to exist, but without end???

    I do not support the at all likely concept that would be shallow-minded and biased on my part.
     
  15. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper Shades of Reason

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    Absolutely possible and probably more probable than not. Hind sight 20/20 so to speak.
     
  16. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Now that we established a few fenceposts: what do you all believe the purpose or plan is?
     
  17. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper Shades of Reason

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    Purpose or plan for what? Life? To live I would assume. The question is what is most beneficial to life in general or rather quality of life? I have my like and I would assume you have yours. But the crux is "to live" ... the rest is a mixed bag of who knows what comes next to help live a fulfilling life. Call me selfish but if I fail to please myself i'm failing me and if I fail to please I'm failing you, so at least when I can please me I'm at least not failing me right? What would happen if everyone was so selfish and we all just minded our own business when it came to other peoples business?
     
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  18. KnowSelf

    KnowSelf Active Member

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    I agree purpose or plan for what? I can only speak for myself, my purpose at this moment is responding to this very enlightening conversation. However, the big picture of all I do not know nor can I accurately speculate about the big picture
     
  19. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Well, you brought it up, the ulterior purpose we may be carrying out, so I got curious.

    Thanks for speculating, in any case!
     
  20. RJM Corbet

    RJM Corbet God Feeds the Ravens

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    There's a thing here that the more secure my life becomes, the less I can experience the full 'frisson' of existence that I have when I am living day to day, not knowing what my life will be like by the end of the day, walking out of my door in the morning not knowing what I am going to experience and who I will be by the time I get home -- how life will have changed me?

    Perhaps a big city policeman experiences this intensity: every day could literally be his last, he has only his wits to get him through?

    Comfort and stability brings a dullness and sameness.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2019

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