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What do you like about Gandhi?

Discussion in 'Historical Debates' started by Don Penguinoini, Jul 11, 2007.

  1. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    That self-interest is necessary, and we can't love anyone more than we love ourselves, even if we were to sacrifice our lives for someone. This is better known as enlightened self-interest. Selfishness as the socialist left and religious right uses the term is just one of the many terms used to engender and exploit guilt and a false sense of compassion.

    I don't' trust Hawking and haven't for quite a while. He's a pathetic figure, which is sad, but it doesn't give him the right to pursue the Truth and then claim to have found something he hasn't--and then grudgingly withdraw without the grace other scientists in similar circumstances had been able to summon. He's pathetic because he exploits the sympathy he receives.

    That said, he still may be right, but not because of our self-centerdness; rather, because of our cowardice, sloth and the use of/susceptibility to, demagoguery...and outright idiocy. Should we allow an insane asylum access to the bomb?
     
    #41 ThePainefulTruth, Feb 18, 2015
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  2. Don Penguinoini

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    Cut me some slack, I was a kid when I wrote that.

    Now I believe Gandhi was the face of freedom, but great men like Netaji, Sardar Patel, Bhagat Singh etc were the winners of independence.

    My estimation of Gandhi falls as I grow up, especially now i've lost any respect I have for Nehru.
     
  3. Don Penguinoini

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    Interesting. Frankly I see little to no tangible substance with such beliefs however they cannot be criticised or faulted.

    Indeed, very true. Something i've thought about too.
     
  4. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    Can you imagine living in a world where Truth is the highest ideal? People would live rational lives. Politics and religion and WORK would be based on rationality. That's pretty tangible. But then of course, there would not be evil to test us, and that's why the universe was created after all, to spawn us here with the ability to choose between good and evil. I guess the good guys should thank the bad guys for making their sacrifice and enabling the rest of us to shine ( :rolleyes: ).
     
  5. Don Penguinoini

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    I am confident that this is an idea that people have held since forever and dreamt of it. But I don't know of any such example in life where large groups of people live like this. I don't subscribe to this 'test' philosophy as its based on too many false premises. Human nature isn't great.

    Truth is subjective anyway. The last thing I need is Islamic or Christian marauders trying to impose their 'truth' on me.

    I believe in the greater good and would easily sacrifice small truths for it. I see your point though, but I just don't think it's particularly practical on a greater scale.
     
  6. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    I can't agree with any of the above, and I have no desire to get into any political discussions on this.

    BS. And calling someone else "pathetic" is, well, pathetic. I'm no particular fan of Hawking, but you have demeaned a man whom has worked against innumerable odds and has contributed much to our knowledge of the cosmos.

    I'll go with "all of the above".
     
  7. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    I've seen some fine examples that have made me misty-eyed, and others who've made me nauseous. There will always be both in this world, and most of us will fall in between.

    Truth is both objective (science) at one end of the spectrum, and subjective (art, imagination) at the other end--and with love and justice in between. There is a reasonably deductible universal moral code, but it's very simple, basically the golden rule. It is at the core of most major religions, but it's gotten swamped by all the chaff thrown in to prop up the religious and allied political hierarchies.

    The scale is a scale of one. We are all individuals with a few simple rights. The practical solution is for each individual not to violate the rights of another--and it's that simple. The Golden Rule as I've attempted to refine it is: Morality is honoring the equal rights of all to their life, liberty, property and self-defense. Morality is the only thing that should be legislated, thus making a moral/legal double standard the source of ALL immorality.
     
  8. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    Why, is Truth not in the purview of politics?

    Pathos is not an excuse. Yes he did contribute significantly to our knowledge at one time, but I see that you ignored my other comments so I must assume you don't want to go into a discussion of that either.

    Sorry, I don't understand.
     
  9. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    Not interested.
     
  10. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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  11. roger1440

    roger1440 I do stuff

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  12. Bunyip

    Bunyip pro scapegoat

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    Consider the slack cut.
    I apologise for my tone. I don't think that your love for Gandhi was misplaced, he was an incredible man- things are just never black and white. The game of statecraft can not help but be bloody sometimes.
     
  13. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    This isn't what Dawkins meant by a "selfish gene." It's the gene itself that's selfish, not the organism it codes for.

    Selfish gene theory posits that, from a system analytic viewpoint, the existence, evolution and population dynamics of organisms is better explained by treating organisms not as ends in themselves, but as as copying or reproductive devices to increase the frequency of a given genetic sequence in the environment.

    Treating the gene itself as paramount, and organisms as reproductive organs, best explains the diversity and ecology of life on Earth.
     
  14. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    Well hell. Jam your foot in the door and then claim you were leaving. Far be it from me to nail you're foot to the floor. Adios!
     
  15. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    Yes, you are correct in that this is what Dawkins meant, so thanks for the heads-up.
     
  16. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    Actually that's true except for self-aware creatures. Animals are selfish but don't know they're selfish. Man is aware that other humans are just like him and thus develop a sense of what it's like to be in their shoes. Many thus tend to seek a balance between self and others via enlightened self-interest. But there are very many who rationalize one way or another to emotionally and irrationally override equal rights for all and place their own importance above the rest. That's just as irrational as saying we should place the rights and importance of others above one's own self. Balance is the key and good order is the common goal with results which benefit all.
     
  17. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    Actually, most of the higher forms of animals are not selfish, and that's true of even a great many of the lower forms as well.
     
  18. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    A creature can't be self-ish unless they're self-aware, by definition. Yes a very few of the higher mammals do exhibit some characteristics of a primitive self-awareness; but I don't believe any are fully self-aware, by which I mean that they are unable to comprehend the universality and ultimate permanence of death. Any that do, including an artificial intelligence, would have to be categorized as a sentient and capable of being selfish, or unselfish, or of adopting the attitude of enlightened self-interest sharing equal rights with all other sentients.

    This brings to mind a puzzle, which I'll post in a new topic: "Equal rights for All?"
     
  19. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    My response included instinct as a factor, not just self-awareness, so I was looking at the term "selfish" in somewhat of a different way than you were. We do know that chimps and other great apes have some self-awareness, as well as elephants, dolphins, etc. It's not so much an either/or thingy as much as it is a matter of degrees.
     
  20. ThePainefulTruth

    ThePainefulTruth Romantic-Cynic

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    Yes, as I said, some animals do have a primitive self-awareness. The best demonstration of that is Koko the gorilla. But she still was unable to grasp the concepts of me, my, mine or I, or was ever able to understand the permanence of death.
     
    #60 ThePainefulTruth, Feb 20, 2015
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