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Cynisism and Loss of Faith in humanty





LittleBlackKitten
If what you believe doesn't mesh up with what someone else believes, they defame, correct, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If your skin doesn't match theirs, they defame, insult, tease, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If you believe what they believe but do not perform like they do, they defame, correct, insult, tease, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If you are desparate and homeless, they assume you're a drug addict and refuse to help you, they sometimes hurt and defame you, and sometimes kill you.

If you disagree with what they tell you, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you LOOK funny, they they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you succeed at anything where someone else has not, they defame, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are the exact opposite of anything they stand for, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are fat because of medical reasons, they make assumptions, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you do not mesh with their way of life, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are homosexual, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.



Whatever happened to repsect, love, and patience? What happened to acceptance and tolerance? What ever happened to friendship and love through difference? What happened to not always having to be right, to correct, or to dominate? Why has humanity become such an evil creature?
watersoul
Who are 'they' ?
There's good n bad in all people as far as I see. If we stick to hanging out with the nicer sections of society then the views of 'they/them' become irrelevant to our own lives.
Ankhanu
LittleBlackKitten wrote:
Whatever happened to repsect, love, and patience? What happened to acceptance and tolerance? What ever happened to friendship and love through difference? What happened to not always having to be right, to correct, or to dominate? Why has humanity become such an evil creature?


When was humanity not like this? Some cultures are better at avoiding some of thos pitfalls than others, but, I've never encountered anything to suggest that there has ever been a human culture that was not unethical in some (generally many) sense. As far as I can see we haven't become such an evil creature, we simply are now as we have always been.
watersoul
Ankhanu wrote:
When was humanity not like this? Some cultures are better at avoiding some of thos pitfalls than others, but, I've never encountered anything to suggest that there has ever been a human culture that was not unethical in some (generally many) sense. As far as I can see we haven't become such an evil creature, we simply are now as we have always been.


I'll agree there, the world has never been 'fair' and it probably never will be.
How we deal with the unfairness is more important though. Thankfully very few people get killed for being 'fat for medical reasons' or homeless, but yes, some folk treat others badly all the same.

I'd say overall though that most people are kind to fellow man, and as long as 'most' people continue to be like that we'll always have a fighting chance of a happy society that cares for each other.
Ankhanu
The extent to which most people care about others is pretty limited. Kindness towards those within one's social sphere is common, but there are severe limits to the extent of most people's social spheres; it may extent to family and friends, out to one's immediate community, maybe out to one's nation, etc. Outside of that sphere, kindness drops off significantly as the suffering of others has less immediate impact upon the individual. I mean, how many people will stop and take a moment out of their day to help a homeless person? I'm not talking about just tossing them a coin and walking on without even making eye contact, but really acknowledging them?

I am a bit of a cynic, but, I find that kindness goes out the window when the end result actually matters to the person. It's easy to be passingly kind (though basic courtesies aren't too common even in most cases), but when being kind may hinder one's own position, then kindness be damned. Tragedies can help overcome this tendency, if they're big enough; large natural disasters, sad stories of loss, etc., but by and large, kindness is a limited quantity in most people.

A near universal truth: people are jerks.

Wink
watersoul
Ankhanu wrote:
I mean, how many people will stop and take a moment out of their day to help a homeless person? I'm not talking about just tossing them a coin and walking on without even making eye contact, but really acknowledging them?


I do that daily in my paid work, but even when I'm 'off duty' I'll usually stop and chat for as long as it takes to roll a man a cigarette. Human interaction is worth far more to a lonely soul than enough change to buy a cup of tea.

...you're right though, most people don't give a toss about other peoples problems,
Bluedoll
You can lead a horse to water but you can not make it drink. If people want to be mean, they will be. Sometimes goodness, a random act of kindness rubs off on another person and they pass that on. It is unfortunate the reverse applies as well.

As for humanity, I’ve always believed that kindness will always be a better choice than the other. One kind person in a crowd of a thousand is a like a diamond in a very dark cold place.
deanhills
LittleBlackKitten wrote:
If what you believe doesn't mesh up with what someone else believes, they defame, correct, hurt, and sometimes kill you.
I don't agree that this is always the case. Some may also ignore you and some may correct you. This is something of attitude as well. To be flexible enough to listen to others' criticism and to read correctly first whether the intention is to defame or to hurt. How to react to defamation and hurt is tricky. That is probably up to the person who has to deal with this.

LittleBlackKitten wrote:
If your skin doesn't match theirs, they defame, insult, tease, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If you believe what they believe but do not perform like they do, they defame, correct, insult, tease, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If you are desparate and homeless, they assume you're a drug addict and refuse to help you, they sometimes hurt and defame you, and sometimes kill you.

If you disagree with what they tell you, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you LOOK funny, they they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you succeed at anything where someone else has not, they defame, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are the exact opposite of anything they stand for, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are fat because of medical reasons, they make assumptions, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you do not mesh with their way of life, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are homosexual, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.
I agree that the above can be true, but it can be false as well. There is positive and negative all around us. Probably better not to focus too heavily on the negative, or if you can't help that it is there, try and remove yourself from it. We can't change our environment, but we can change how we look at it.
LittleBlackKitten wrote:
Whatever happened to repsect, love, and patience? What happened to acceptance and tolerance? What ever happened to friendship and love through difference? What happened to not always having to be right, to correct, or to dominate? Why has humanity become such an evil creature?
I don't agree that there is no respect, love and patience any more. It could be that you are wearing the wrong set of glasses? Could it be that respect, love and patience have to come from ourselves first? I'm sure you must have noted that there are people that go through life that everyone respects, loves and have great patience with? I sometimes check what they are doing? Some of them do it by design, i.e. it is not always that sincere, but others do it naturally and spontaneously. The ones that do it naturally just seem to have this unquestioning faith in other human beings and always treat them genuinely with respect and courtesy, one just can't help doing that in return.
ocalhoun
Ah, I see somebody else has got these 'human' creatures figured out as well.
I gave up on them years ago, and if I had my choice, I would no longer be one myself.
jeffryjon
LittleBlackKitten wrote:
If what you believe doesn't mesh up with what someone else believes, they defame, correct, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If your skin doesn't match theirs, they defame, insult, tease, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If you believe what they believe but do not perform like they do, they defame, correct, insult, tease, hurt, and sometimes kill you.

If you are desparate and homeless, they assume you're a drug addict and refuse to help you, they sometimes hurt and defame you, and sometimes kill you.

If you disagree with what they tell you, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you LOOK funny, they they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you succeed at anything where someone else has not, they defame, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are the exact opposite of anything they stand for, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are fat because of medical reasons, they make assumptions, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you do not mesh with their way of life, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.

If you are homosexual, they defame, correct, hurt, insult, and sometimes kill you.



Whatever happened to repsect, love, and patience? What happened to acceptance and tolerance? What ever happened to friendship and love through difference? What happened to not always having to be right, to correct, or to dominate? Why has humanity become such an evil creature?


Well you've certainly achieved a cynical post with this one LBK. Intolerance has always been a problem in society, but most people in my experience are tolerant - even tolerant of the intolerant - that's why we don't have worldwide anarchy. With regard to our peers I believe there's a tendency to filter what we see through our own image of reality. For most part, I think that providing what someone else does/believes doesn't pose a threat or overly infringe on us, humans tend to live and let live. Not to say there aren't those who are the way you've depicted, but I believe that's just because those people are full of anger and resentment and are just seeking a way to justify venting those feelings toward someone else. As an example in UK we have people who fight others for supporting the wrong football team, though most football fans settle for a bit of jovial rivalry that often bonds a friendship. In many communities mutual disagreement (especially among men) creates a bonding in itself.
Arseniy
All things you've mentioned (I mean tolerance, patience, regret etc.) can be called in several different ways.
For Baudlillard, these are simulacres, a symbols which mean only another symbols, so they are fake itself.
For Lyotard, these are metanarratives, a huge descriptive constructions, which build a phantasmatic reality for people who believe in them, so they are fake.
For Althusser, these are ideologies, a specifical ways of thought which cannot be fought with because even fighting ideologies is ideology itself. But, times change, and ideologies change too.
Sloterdijk writes in his "Critique of Cynical Reason" that the world's cynism is called by the critique of ideologies made by the true Enlightement, which has become cynical because of disappointment in the value of the knowledge.
So please, stop believe in tolerance, multiculturalism, equality of people, Christ and other stuff and just turn your healthy cynism on to see right side of the world.
deanhills
Arseniy wrote:
Enlightement, which has become cynical because of disappointment in the value of the knowledge.
Great post Arseniy! The portion that resonated the most was the one about enlightenment. I remember as a student how I would get on a "knowledge" high where every now and then the world would make 100% sense. Just to get totally disappointed the next day when I recognized a flaw. So probably the best way to cope with this is to embrace all opposites and accept them for what they are, and have zero expectations of the outcome. I can't therefore completely agree with being cynical being the answer, as the opposite of a cynic is an optimist. I guess the best way to survive is to put both cynicism and optimism in a blender and not have any expectations of the outcome after the blending. I've come to accept that today's truth that gave me goose pimples today, may very well be tomorrow's falsehood. That in every truth there lies the potential of a falsehood, and in every falsehood the potential of truth. We like to separate the two, and maybe therein lies the trap in trying to be enlightened?
Bikerman
Arseniy wrote:
Sloterdijk writes in his "Critique of Cynical Reason" that the world's cynism is called by the critique of ideologies made by the true Enlightement, which has become cynical because of disappointment in the value of the knowledge.
This depends on whether you are using the word 'cynicism' in the original Greek sense as it was intended, or accepting the meaning often assumed in modern times.
Baudrillard is a pain in the neck. His post-modernist semiotics, coupled with his deliberately obscurist style of writing mean that I can't summon the patience to plough through his ramblings.
I haven't read any Liotar, but I do know something of Althusser - but more for his work on structural Marxism than his writing on epistemology.
Arseniy
Quote:
I guess the best way to survive is to put both cynicism and optimism in a blender and not have any expectations of the outcome after the blending.

I should say that it is a popular position in the scientific field, but you should avoid being extremely not serious or you may just turn into a clown. Zizek is on his way there now publishing 10-15 books per year and doing a stand-up comedy in his 'Pervert's Guide to Cinema'.
Quote:
This depends on whether you are using the word 'cynicism' in the original Greek sense as it was intended, or accepting the meaning often assumed in modern times.

Well, this meaning is exactly quite the same. I put in that word something like laughing on other's mistakes, being sarcastic about ideas, rejecting the educational system, targeting onto freedom etc. Cynics in Greece and Rome are not so different from todays Enlightenists.
Baudrillard was translated into Russian really qualitatively, so his works were not so hard for me to read due my first courses. Lyotard (whoops! Mispelled, stupid french grammar) is quite well known for his 'The Postmodern Condition'. And what's for Althusser, I'm talking about the article 'Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses'.
Bikerman
No, the Greek cynics weren't anything like the modern understanding of the term. They were a sort of proto-hippy movement (ie they believed in rejecting conventional possessions, authority, and living 'close to nature'). The original cynic school was closer to Buddhism than anything else - the basic idea was very similar, that possession and desire are the root of human suffering.

The basic tennets of cynicism were:
a) The proper aim in life is happiness. This can be seen as living in harmony with Nature.
b) Contentment requires self-sufficiency and control of mental state
c) Self-sufficiency is achieved by living a life of 'Virtue'
d) Virtue requires freeing oneself from wealth, fame, or power, which have no value in Nature.
e) Suffering is caused by value judgements or attachment of worth, which cause negative emotions and a vicious character.

The first true cynic was probably Antisthenes
Arseniy
Heh, you're talking about style of life and I'm talking about style of thought.
The approach is quite similar - critical point of view and neglectation of opponent's ideology.
Otherwise modern cynics wouldn't be called like that Smile
Bikerman
Arseniy wrote:
Heh, you're talking about style of life and I'm talking about style of thought.
The approach is quite similar - critical point of view and neglectation of opponent's ideology.
Otherwise modern cynics wouldn't be called like that Smile

Well, they nagged people to give up materialism, that is true, but the modern use has come to mean a negative attitude to everything, whereas the original cynics had a positive message...
jeffryjon
Bikerman wrote:
No, the Greek cynics weren't anything like the modern understanding of the term. They were a sort of proto-hippy movement (ie they believed in rejecting conventional possessions, authority, and living 'close to nature'). The original cynic school was closer to Buddhism than anything else - the basic idea was very similar, that possession and desire are the root of human suffering.

The basic tennets of cynicism were:
a) The proper aim in life is happiness. This can be seen as living in harmony with Nature.
b) Contentment requires self-sufficiency and control of mental state
c) Self-sufficiency is achieved by living a life of 'Virtue'
d) Virtue requires freeing oneself from wealth, fame, or power, which have no value in Nature.
e) Suffering is caused by value judgements or attachment of worth, which cause negative emotions and a vicious character.

The first true cynic was probably Antisthenes


Then I guess I'm more cynical than I realised - thanks for that Chris
Arseniy
Quote:
the modern use has come to mean a negative attitude to everything, whereas the original cynics had a positive message...

...and that is a good example of thinking captured in ideology! Wink
We have to be very careful (as to my mind) marking the metaphysical things like way of thought or decision as 'Good' or 'Not Good'. In the case of cynics (and in many other cases) it can be just negative for positive - cynicism in order to protect the true Enlightment through the criticism of other ideologies.
Remember House MD series? That's a good example of this mechanism, when House lies in order to cure a patient: cynical House is enlightenist, and other characters are representatives of criticized ideologies like tolerance, christianity and so on.
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