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Offlineexclusive58
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Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness?
    #3099012 - 09/06/04 02:34 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Ok, first of all, I think that pretty much any passage of the movie Waking Life is worth discussing and getting deeper in.
But I'd like to discuss the part about the guy sitting in the restaurant and asking which is the most universal characteristic of humans, fear OR laziness?
Here is the quote from the movie so you can get a feel of where the question is coming from:


"... When you come to think of it, almost all of human behavior and activity is not essentially any different from animal behavior. The most advanced technologies and craftsmanship bring us at best up to the super-chimpanzee level. Actually, the gap between say Plato or Nietzsche and the average human is greater than the gap between that chimpanzee and the average human. The realm of the real spirit, the true artist, the saint, the philosopher, is rarely achieved. Why so few? Why is world history and evolution not stories of progress but rather this endless and futile addition of zeroes. No greater values can develop. Hell, the Greeks 3,000 years ago were just as advanced as we are. So what are these barriers that keep people from reaching anywhere near their real potential? The answer to that can be found in another question, and that's this: Which is the most universal human characteristic? Fear or laziness?"


:thumbup:

There is also this quote from the bible that is well known (i think) and that relates to this topic:
"Many are born, but few are chosen" (<= probably not the right words  :confused:)

I think this last quote is a more primitive way of getting to what the guy in Waking Life is saying, because it would mean that our destiny is already written somewhere when we are born.

But anyway, I know most of you feel what I am talkin about now, like all you people in here that can't find a friend in surroundings to talk about philosophical and spiritual stuff, and who wonder why there are so few people around that have similar things on their mind. Is it because most people are lazy or fearful?

What do you guys think?


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OfflinePsiloman
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3099052 - 09/06/04 02:48 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

I would vote for idiocy or "happygolucky"ism


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Offlineexclusive58
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Psiloman]
    #3099221 - 09/06/04 03:41 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Well i say people can be idiots either because they are too lazy to be anything else, or because they're scared of something...maybe scared of opening up, or scared of their emptiness and nothingness, and they rather leave that aside and be idiots.

The more i think about it, the more i'd say the answer is fear


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3099230 - 09/06/04 03:44 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

C) They are the same


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OfflineFrog
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3099254 - 09/06/04 03:50 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

I found this link, and the author may have hit it on the head. He says it doesn't matter whether it's fear or laziness, that most of us aren't taught to think like the philosopher, the saint, etc. We are influenced by the media, impressing our parents, and peer pressure. If we can't get beyond those things, how can we learn to be introspective and self-knowing, and learn the things we need to know to make this life more valuable to live?

I would have to say it comes down to laziness more than it comes down to fear, although I suppose you would have to poll people, and even then, people don't know what motivates them, or de-motivates them.

Quote:

Knowledge, Goals, Action


The strategy for discovering and acquiring the virtues for Optimal Living can usefully be depicted as a triangle of knowledge-goals-action.


The amount and quality of pertinent knowledge that we acquire is crucial; it directly effects the suitability of the goals that we choose, and the effectiveness of our actions. We need knowledge both of ourselves, and of other aspects relevant to our lives. Self-knowledge, a frequently overlooked moral value, is crucial to discovering personally satisfying goals, assessing the state of our virtues (and vices), and deciding on particularly effective action strategies. Psychological knowledge, awareness, introspection and simple self-honesty combine to keep us in touch with our deepest feelings and desires, while also giving us a relatively objective measure of our character and skills. The conscious valuing of self-knowledge combined with repeated practice will, over time, yield the virtue of 'self-curiosity' - getting to enjoy knowing our real self.


Valid knowledge is crucial to all aspects of defining and achieving goals. We need to know what is possible in reality - and what is desirable. We also need to know practical methods for achieving those desires. Virtually every choice will be improved by having pertinent knowledge. Be it medical, financial or moral knowledge. Be it communication, parenting or social skills. But even more fundamentally, we need to know how to generally acquire reliable, objective knowledge - knowledge that concords with reality. The virtues of rationality, curiosity and honesty embody this love of true knowledge. On the other hand, the vices of mystical thinking, logical inconsistency, evasion and deceit undermine our ability to effectively understand and deal with reality.


The second corner of our triangle - goal-setting - is another underdeveloped moral concept. Without passionate, but achievable goals, life has little meaning. All the knowledge, productiveness and integrity in the world are wasted without a meaningful focus for them. Goals and knowledge stand in a reciprocal relationship with each other. Knowledge, including the all-important aspect of self-knowledge, provides the input to our goal-setting, while goals, in return, provide the parameters for our knowledge seeking. Goals that are both rationally and emotionally important to us will motivate beneficial thought and action. They can serve as a powerful driving force behind virtuous behavior such as further knowledge and (sub-)goal-seeking, productiveness and integrity. Passionate goals also have a direct positive effect on self-esteem and happiness.


Yet, discovering optimal goals is no trivial task. Unfortunately, most of us were not taught this particular skill early in life. We can so easily fall into the trap of taking on other people's goals: Parents or social acceptability pushing us into an unsuitable profession; the media influencing our choice of romantic partner; peer-pressure coaxing us into acquiring one-upmanship possessions and bad habits. It takes excellent self-knowledge, substantial conscious effort, well thought out values, and lots of practice to learn the art of goal-setting. Two of the virtues associated with goal-setting are self-awareness and self-responsibility.


Action - the third corner of our strategy triangle - is the 'simple' act of getting down to implementing our plans. We sometimes get stuck at this level: We have a passionate goal and know, more or less, how to achieve it - but we don't. Be it laziness or fear; or be it just lack of practice. Maybe we need to become aware of the virtues needed for this essential step. They include: integrity, productiveness, discipline and dynamic optimism.


Acting to achieve our values provides pleasure both in the journey towards the goal, and in its attainment. But it also serves to create new contexts for the other two corners of the triangle: It prompts new goals and sub-goals, and new requirements for knowledge. However, the essence of action is to turn our thoughts and dreams into reality - to live.


Before we explore a more comprehensive list of virtues that make up rational ethics, let us investigate two important aspects of Optimal Living: relationships and psychology.




True Morality - Rational Principles for Optimal Living


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The day will come when, after harnessing the ether, the winds, the tides, gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of love. And, on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire.  -Teilard


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InvisibleMoonshoe
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3100017 - 09/06/04 07:25 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

about us being 'super chimpanzees'

i recently watched a documentary called 'the dark side of the chimps' showing how the chimpanzees display brutal warfare and intra-species violence that is very much comparable to their closest evolutionary relatives, us.

Indeed most of our motives are just the same as the chimps, the only differance is the insane degree of technology weve devolped.

To me this shows the mistake we have made in directing our own development. (most of us) Instead of developing at the base level and working on changing our motives and drives, weve simply constantly enhanced our ability to fufill those motives.

Instead of changing our biological urge to violence (which has been repeatedly proven possible) weve simply increased our technological capabilities at creating violence.


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OfflineZoso_UK
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Moonshoe]
    #3100048 - 09/06/04 07:37 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Great post Moonshoe, couldn't agree more. I think fear has to the universal characteristic... its that primal fear that you see in chimps that drives so many humans to lived gated lives with huge bombs to "protect" them. If it were laziness, then man wouldn't have the technology and power he has today... its taken a lot of effort for mankind to get where it is today. Albeit, effort I feel largely poorly spent.


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Moonshoe]
    #3100051 - 09/06/04 07:38 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

i think that out of fear, poeple make themselves weak and lazy. also i agree we're taught to fear everything other than the little niche we can control


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3102080 - 09/07/04 06:49 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

zoso you say that we're not lazy becouse we invented lots of stuff... but what did we invent that stuff for? only to work less and DO less!
humans have lost the satisfaction of making things... they relay on others to make things for them (and i think that also extands to everyday life...) like this artical frog posted... people will follow everything ales but themselves! and THAT'S our problame (i guess it stems from fear and laziness though)

no one ever tought me to take care of my self or think for my self... they'd much rather think for me and teach me to think for others!
we're living in a world with millions of choices and when you watch TV you think it's easy accomplishing all sorts of stuff and you want to expiriance all million choices but that's so far off from realety... so you try your best to win the rat race and never understand what's the point... (well... i guess that does not apply to most of the people reading this but you all know who i'm talking about right?)

i've been trying to wake up from this dream this rat race... and i find that i'm incapable of thinking like i thought i was and i found many other bad things along the way... but at least now i'm on the right track! so no more laziness for me! no fear! i have to live my life as *I* know best and make the best of it otherwise it aint worth the truble!


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Offlinedeafpanda
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Simisu]
    #3102110 - 09/07/04 07:17 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

If you ask me, people are not lazy enough. We work far more than we need to. Most people work about 40 hours a week, this is ridiculous compared to what we can survive on. Personally I'd rather have less money and more time than that, although I try to get the best of both worlds.


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OfflineZoso_UK
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: deafpanda]
    #3102145 - 09/07/04 07:44 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

simisu, only a minority of the world are in our fortunate position. most have to work damn hard, which makes me feel a little bad cos i don't have to.

also, it depends on how you view laziness. people like me spend their life engaged in exercising the mind, not always the body... does that make me lazy? probably... ah well.


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Zoso_UK]
    #3102419 - 09/07/04 10:46 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

well... it IS all about my interpetation of that consept so...
i dont see it as something physical or mental or whatever i think being lazy is masured by how productive one is!
how much you manage to actualy DO in a day?
if work does not really count and talking about stuff does not count and buying stuff does not count... you see where i'm going with this?
what do we actualy DO that is productive? that contributes meaningfully to our lives? in my view it does not have to be something MADE (though making (hash) cakes from scratch DOES COUNT :smile: ) it can be any activety that contibutes to out lives...
if i was able to make gifts for my friends rather then buy gifts that would be productive and meaningfull but unfortunatly i lack the skills (that's why we're all in a problame... too many options to go around!)

also i don't think you can exercise you mind with out also exercising your body as well... i dont mean to say you should start running everyday what i mean to say is... if you think all day and you figure out a bunch of stuff... well... you physically have to go and DO that stuff/live like that right? your body is a non sparable part of that process!

and i agree... we're obviusly talking about the modern world and not about poor people in third world countries... which makes me wonder which of us is better off?


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OfflineZoso_UK
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Simisu]
    #3102443 - 09/07/04 10:55 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

if you think all day and you figure out a bunch of stuff... well... you physically have to go and DO that stuff/live like that right? your body is a non sparable part of that process

Unless, like me, you figure out that the best thing is to do nothing  :grin: Except shroom of course  :mushroom2:

I also wonder whether third world people or us are better off. I guess its hard to generalise on such a big scale. But I've heard people say they've been to India expecting to find a load of unhappy poor people but instead finding a load of happy poor people.


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Zoso_UK]
    #3102487 - 09/07/04 11:10 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Happiness doesn't seem to be correlated with wealth until you get to the really poor, if I remember correctly. "They" did a study, although I've no idea how they measured happiness.


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Zoso_UK]
    #3102511 - 09/07/04 11:17 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

they got shrooms in india! :smile:
i think i'd be very happy living on my own... making my own food and covering my needs...

i've been very interested with the idea of permaculture (http://www.permaculture.net/) but i doubt i would be able to live like that... i'd still need lots of things that i can not let go of (unfotunatly)


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OfflineZoso_UK
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Simisu]
    #3102541 - 09/07/04 11:28 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

for me, its things like clean water and toilets and things like that which mean i'll probably be a lazy westerner for far longer than is good for me!

i love the idea of doing what my uncle did in the 60s though... going with a big group of friends to a buy a farm and live isolated from high-tech society with a barn full of weed and a... football stadium full of shrooms :smile:


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Offlineexclusive58
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: Frog]
    #3103497 - 09/07/04 03:56 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

:thumbup: thanx alot for posting that!
This shows exactly how the best book you can read is the book of Life, and how you are your own light, your own 'religion'. And also how sociey corrupts, it teaches us to work for the good of society. Its like a vicious circle, and we need to free ourselves from it. And i agree that self knowledge is critical for this to happen.
But i still think that it boils down to fear or laziness, cuz it is "everyone else" that makes up the parents, the peer pressure, the media etc..it is all those fearful or lazy people that refrain one from living a valuable life because we let ourselves be influenced by them.
i'm just writing this as it comes by the way, but i think it's a "which came first, the chicken or the egg" kind of dilemna.


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Offlineexclusive58
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: deafpanda]
    #3103594 - 09/07/04 04:11 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Quote:

deafpanda said:
If you ask me, people are not lazy enough. We work far more than we need to. Most people work about 40 hours a week, this is ridiculous compared to what we can survive on. Personally I'd rather have less money and more time than that, although I try to get the best of both worlds.




i think that what is talked about in the quote i posted is more of a mental laziness rather than a physical one. Sure you can work 40 hours a week for money, but depending on what your job is, these 40 hours could be a total waste of time, spiritually speaking at least.
You could probably spend 40 hours aquiring enough knowledge to live on your own, and then spend the rest of your life applying what you learned and at the same time developping your self-knowledge and striving for a non-society influenced goal.

so ya, there can be ambiguity when talking about laziness...


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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3103915 - 09/07/04 05:25 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Yup, what exclusive said. Personal gain > monetary gain. Of course, that's just my view :smile:


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OfflineFrog
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Re: Most universal human characteristic: Fear or Laziness? [Re: exclusive58]
    #3104224 - 09/07/04 06:29 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Just based on my own personal experiences, I would say that people are mostly lazy. It's hard work to "rise above" the status quo. People mostly want a lot of money without having to do a whole lot to get it.

Of course, there are the cases of people who are afraid of failure, so they don't even try. But mostly it's laziness. Almost every human weakness exists due to laziness.


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