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Old 09-17-2007, 11:19 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default The Human Condition

This thread intends to address the single most important and relevant topic to all of mankind. The Human condition; the reason for being and the experiences that shape the lives of everyone around us.

Why do experience pain, joy, contempt and the entire gamut of emotion?

Is it possible to gradually change the human condition via transhumanism to make for a better world?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the capacity for humans to evolve further and is it necessary to increase the rate at which we evolve?

My hope is that this thread will only be addressed by those who would like to legitimately discuss the topic and it will not turn into a pissing contest over religion or politics, at least not right away!
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Old 09-17-2007, 01:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'll Reply later when i'm drunk. Not because it is'nt worthy, my vocab get's better when inebriated.
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Old 09-17-2007, 03:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by JayJamJah View Post
This thread intends to address the single most important and relevant topic to all of mankind. The Human condition; the reason for being and the experiences that shape the lives of everyone around us.

Why do experience pain, joy, contempt and the entire gamut of emotion?

Is it possible to gradually change the human condition via transhumanism to make for a better world?

What is the meaning of life?

What is the capacity for humans to evolve further and is it necessary to increase the rate at which we evolve?

My hope is that this thread will only be addressed by those who would like to legitimately discuss the topic and it will not turn into a pissing contest over religion or politics, at least not right away!
I have a question, more of a request for a clarification, and i'm only asking it because i'm assuming that you're a proponent of evolution.

My query is that:
If evolution is the change of a species that is necessary to their survival, and if man descends from apes, then why are there still original species without these acquired traits?
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Old 09-17-2007, 05:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I would like to challenge your assertion that this is the most important and relevant topic to all of mankind. I find that to be completely absurd and off base. To a starving Ethiopian child for instance, if you'll pardon me for using the old cliche, the most important topic would probably be where to get food. As far as human drives go, survival comes first, quest for meaning second at best, though it can usually be beaten out by quest for pussy or even quest for some good obscure post-punk. It is my personal opinion that there is no meaning to life, because meaning is a human concept that simply doesn't apply to the universe. Life simply is. Of course, this is merely my perspective on things and I don't think it would be at all fruitful to argue it. As for why we experience pain and joy and what not, I generally see these things as mechanisms by which our body tries to ensure our survival, for instance if we felt great joy when being dismembered we might not fare quite as well as a species, and as a result would not exist and would not be asking these questions. As to WHY do we experience these things the way we do, as in what makes pain pain or whatever, what makes a feeling pleasant or unpleasant, I don't really know how to explain it. But I do believe that the mind can transform experiences, turn pain into pleasure and vice versa. Err... where was I going with this? I'm not sure. As for human evolution, I don't think it's really necessary for humans to continue to evolve because we're at the top of the food chain and no longer have any natural predators, unless of course we evolve to be more resistant to diseases and viruses, in which case yes, we should speed up our evolution through genetic manipulation. Of course, that doesn't really affect us since we've already been born and what not so we're pretty much screwed so I guess we don't really have to evolve unless you care about future generations being able to live longer. Which I don't really. Maybe one day I'll have kids and I'll care. But not right now. Maybe that answers some of these queries in a somewhat non-obtuse way, but probably not. I really started rambling at some point. Do with this post what you will.
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Old 09-17-2007, 06:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by cardboard adolescent View Post
I would like to challenge your assertion that this is the most important and relevant topic to all of mankind. I find that to be completely absurd and off base. To a starving Ethiopian child for instance, if you'll pardon me for using the old cliche, the most important topic would probably be where to get food. As far as human drives go, survival comes first, quest for meaning second at best, though it can usually be beaten out by quest for pussy or even quest for some good obscure post-punk. It is my personal opinion that there is no meaning to life, because meaning is a human concept that simply doesn't apply to the universe. Life simply is. Of course, this is merely my perspective on things and I don't think it would be at all fruitful to argue it. As for why we experience pain and joy and what not, I generally see these things as mechanisms by which our body tries to ensure our survival, for instance if we felt great joy when being dismembered we might not fare quite as well as a species, and as a result would not exist and would not be asking these questions. As to WHY do we experience these things the way we do, as in what makes pain pain or whatever, what makes a feeling pleasant or unpleasant, I don't really know how to explain it. But I do believe that the mind can transform experiences, turn pain into pleasure and vice versa. Err... where was I going with this? I'm not sure. As for human evolution, I don't think it's really necessary for humans to continue to evolve because we're at the top of the food chain and no longer have any natural predators, unless of course we evolve to be more resistant to diseases and viruses, in which case yes, we should speed up our evolution through genetic manipulation. Of course, that doesn't really affect us since we've already been born and what not so we're pretty much screwed so I guess we don't really have to evolve unless you care about future generations being able to live longer. Which I don't really. Maybe one day I'll have kids and I'll care. But not right now. Maybe that answers some of these queries in a somewhat non-obtuse way, but probably not. I really started rambling at some point. Do with this post what you will.
Your post is exactly the type of response I hoped to get.

I know what you mean about keeping things in context, however I would say that the need to find food is essential to all humans and very much a part of the human condition. Moreover I suppose I meant topic as it pertains to casual discussion. Taking precedent over music, sex, sports, and even obscure post punk cuts.

The fact that we have in American society such easy access to basic needs like food and shelter has allowed us to evolve and creative medicines and technologies to improve our lives. Less then 100 years ago infectious diseases were a major plague on civilization and a death sentence for many stricken with them. Less the 20 years ago HIV\Aids was death sentence. etc etc.

Your 100% accurate that "The search for meaning" is secondary at best, but with our basic needs becoming so accessible it is an eventual step in our continuing evolution. I think your simple explanation for human instinct is a very succinct and accurate one. I differ in thinking with you in the sense that I feel there are much greater heights that humans could evolve towards.

We still use a very small percentage of our brains capacity and our understanding of space both locally and beyond is still very minimal at best.
The search for our origins is a driving key component in answering the questions that inevitably cross every persons mind whether they have the time and capacity to dwell on them or not.

Great Post Cardboard! Horribly constructed, but great thoughts thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-17-2007, 06:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have a question, more of a request for a clarification, and i'm only asking it because i'm assuming that you're a proponent of evolution.

My query is that:
If evolution is the change of a species that is necessary to their survival, and if man descends from apes, then why are there still original species without these acquired traits?
The answer is simple and one I am asked to supply often.

We did not descend from the Apes that exist today. Just as there are many species within the ape world now there always has been. Some early Apes evolved into humans others to orangutans others Gorillas etc etc.

All life has evolved from single cell organism's but they of course have gone into extinction because of evolution.

Evolution is about adaptation to environment to allow the strongest most adaptive organisms to thrive.
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Old 09-17-2007, 07:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The bottom line is that we are searching for ideas and constructs, that our brains will not answer yet. We think that through learning we can find some answers. We CAN'T. Human beings have to evolve again, however small the change may be; to reach the next level of understanding.
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Old 09-17-2007, 07:07 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The bottom line is that we are searching for ideas and constructs, that our brains will not answer yet. We think that through learning we can find some answers. We CAN'T. Human beings have to evolve again, however small the change may be; to reach the next level of understanding.
Getting a little drunk. By the Way I agree, however I thin evolution is more subtle then we realize. Are believe we are constantly evolving mentally and perhaps physically too. Look at how much taller this generation is then say your great grandparents. My family for example my grandfather was 5'10" his father was 5'7" My son is 6'4"...Tallest woman any of us have married is 5'5"
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Old 09-17-2007, 07:08 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Pertaining to our only using a small percentage of our brains: it could be, I'm not stating this as a fact or anything just theorizing, that if we were to unlock the rest of our brains it could merely be the equivalent of opening up the floodgates, that our brain would all of a sudden simply be interpreting a hell of a lot more sense data, most of it extraneous. It could also be that it would greatly enhance our analytic processes and that we'd be able to take radical new perspectives on all sorts of problems and make unheard of advancements, who knows. It certainly seems possible, however, that we evolved to only use a small portion of our brain because using the whole thing would be too cumbersome.
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Old 09-17-2007, 07:15 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Wether or not it's neccessary to speed the process of evolution is irrelevant (I know I can't spell, but bear with me), the fact of the matter is evolution IS speeding up. Not a lot we can do about that. Everything is constantly evolving, but the obviously noticable changes are coming at a much faster rate the last several thousand years.
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