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Is Life Worth the Strife? - Page 2

User Thread
 33yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that ChrisD is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"Why is it so stimulating to imagine other species? Or a million year old dinasaur bone in your backyard? You don't know it is there but for fuck's sake... you have to look!"

you're exactly right, its in our nature to explore and research shit for as long as we're alive. I don't know what to think about that, but how true it is.

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"The truth will set you on fire"
 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that wittgensteins is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Decius, I want to appalud you for being able to present an argument with polish and clarity. Why this is anything more than the most elementary of skills I don't know, but next to some of the semi-literate garbage you see on this site, it is a virtue indeed. For my part, I admit that the suggestive murk of my posts hasn't really helped my case. Yes - mostly, they are more posture than poise, ponderous, image-mad, teeming with archaisms, slaked over in churning prolixity, emotional in a way that bespeaks an unquiet mind, packed to the brim with pasty metaphors: in short, the result of unerring fingers and a wonky brain. Here - mental stability permitting - I will do my best to use my words with economy.

Chris: As you have probably realized by now, your statement is wrong for you failed to understand my statement. I am correct for I choose the most probable truth in a world of probability, yet by definition admit that it could also be wrong. This definition is clarified, clearly, by "a world of probability".

No, Decius. What is interesting is that although Chris does indeed misunderstand your post, he is still right. That's just how WRONG you are. Your probability argument is specious at best; at worst, it is an exhibition of unprecedented stupidity. Behind the cultivated polish of your prose, a plodding mind feasts on perfunctory common places; despite a jazzy picture and a honed facility for expression, you really are no better than the mindless drones who infest this site, and the tendentious trash which you've posted on my screen makes me quiver with anger. I feel that I should compose myself: then again, doesn't an arrow 'quiver' the instant before it is dispatched? Let me just compose.

The first thing that I want to say is that I think you should shut up about the probability thing. I've said it countless times, but I'll say it again: I'm not talking about the assumptions which inform our actions in everyday life. I credit myself with having an inquisitive mind, and there is no want of idealism in the way that I approach the subject of 'knowledge'. Thinking, learning... pruning and adding to our storehouses of knowledge, etc - this undoubtedly constitutes a journey, and a journey of the best kind: for it is one without a specified destination.
That said, let's not confuse temperament with thought. Let's not confuse our feelings with some kind of bumptious 'philosophy'. But I'm not being clear. I'll try set my points out in stages:

1) What I will loosely call Philosophy' (what I define as something more or less synonomous with 'reason' and 'logic' ) does not deal in unsubtantiated assumptions. It is the very apotheosis of philosophy to bring probability into it. It may be prudent to do so in most situations in life, but anything that we cannot be irrefutably proved is condmened to the philosophical bestiary. At the risk of you accusing me of "not thinking for myself", I'll point out that this is how Descartes defined the task of philosophy, and that this legacy lives on in philosophical fields today. To those who say: "Well, nothing can be irrefutably proved" I can only laugh. This is the singular truth mankind possesses, and it would be more widely acknowledged if it were not so mundane. Of course nothing can be proved! How could it? And that is exactly the point I was making, albeit opaquely, in my original post: the only absurdity is that man's capacity for 'reason' has put into his head the hilariously nebulous idea that there can be a concrete, eternal, indestrucible stock of truths!
It is clear that Chris has a much more acute grasp of what philosophy is: it is a quest to live one's life in full view of our ignorance, so that we might cure ourselves of that myopic sickness of the mind we call 'reason'.

2) Okay, so one of your arguments is that I'm a compulsive categoriser, is it? I like to pigeon hole, do I? Can I just quote one of you comments?

I begin to understand what it is that you are as I read more that you state... for you are not what I originally thought.

I'm sure you've realised why I'm quoting this. I could be forgiven here for thinking that it is YOU who is trying to pigeon-whole ME, and however presumptuous that is, you at least had the good grace to try to amend whatever caricature of me you hold in you head.

3) If I may say so, there is a stark difference between our particular lusts for pattern-finding. As befits the general tone of my posts, I was being experimental. I was testing the waters in a - seemingly doomed - bid to tempt out the unargued presumptions behind your arguments. There is more than this, though. For it is instructive that you accuse my arguments of being "incomplete". Well, first of all, I want to thank you for the compliment, though I sort of assumed that I what I had to say would span more than a few measley pages. Secondly, I want you to get your head out your arse and realise that philosophical discussions are by necessity technical, referential, and overwhelmingly polymorphous in genealogy. You say that my arguments come up short because:

...your thoughts are not your own, but that of the class of philosopher you have chosen to pigeonhole yourself with.

But the point is that these classifications are not simply redundant pieces of jargon, but provide a useful shorthand for complex philosophical argument. I agree that they are often used a screen for feeble intelligence, and that they often enslave rather than enlighten the user; as a student, I know this all too well. Unfortunately for you though, you've picked on the wrong person. I don't fit that particular 'pigeon-hole'. I was merely trying to make sense of our hopelessly compressed and as yet half-baked assertions by setting them in philosophical context. Who knows, maybe it was the wrong approach. Maybe I served to confuse rather than illuminate. But to decide that you 'understand' me on the basis of this approach is just ludicrous.

4) As a result, you've conflated weaknesses in expression with weaknesses in meaning. This is to a very large extent my fault.

Further, you have admitted that you do carry with you a bias in the form of "philosophical baggage", as you label it. This honesty is quite commendable, but does detract from the validity of your statements.

The suggestion seems to be that you yourself aren't burdened with any "philosophical baggage". I can say with a heavy heart that this is symptomatic of the spectacular arrogance of our times. It evidences with perfect adroitness the genral culture of philistinism which is everywhere present, one which you first showed signs of when you said:

In doing so, although you may absorb as much information as you can from this set group, the thoughts you present are incomplete primarily because you have not discovered these truths yourself.

Surely a mature guy like you knows that nobody can live purely by his own efforts? Nobody ever really discovers a "truth" for himself. Of course, one must really internalise and understand to its depths this "truth" in order for it to have any claim to such a name. That is self-evident. In fact, you yourself said so a little while ago: I remember you saying something to the effect of "Mathematicians don't invent, they progress". Most absurd of all is the suggestion that I'm not worth litsening to because I know what I'm talking about - that, somehow, my reading into the subject disadvantages me in some way. It's santiimonious pap if I've ever heard any.

6) As you clearly don't know what I'm talking about, and moreover aren't competent to judge the validity of what I say, I'll refrain from launching into a detailed defense of a doctrine which, in all honesty, I espoused with my tongue firmly lodged inside my cheek. But since you insist on inflicting your dreary brand of closet Hegelianism on us, here I am now. Perhaps I am at fault. After all, did I really expect people to talk about PHILOPSOPHY on this damned forum?

(Cue threats of expulsion and a wave of routine but impeccably polished tit-bits of beer-mat wisdom).

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[  Edited by wittgensteins at   ]
 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that wittgensteins is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I'll try to be austere. You may not read this and almost certainly won't reply, but it just strikes me that bad communication from both of us is creating an unnecessary impasse.

First of all, this idea that probability has a place in philosophy is very mysterious. Could you give an example of one philosophical field which utlises probabilistic thought? Assuredly, it is a vital mathematical tool, but it doesn't sit with what we might call the 'philosophical ethos'. Philosophy stays silent on what it cannot say - it is a sort of logical atomism, which explains why it links well with certain mathematical studies.

Secondly, yes, I do think life's worth the strife, and yes, I am expressing in a roundabout way a certain amount of post-adolescent angst.

It is my conviction that philosophy springs from such reflections on the absurdity and meaninglessness of life. It is only when we strip life of its everyday 'meaning' that a myriad of arresting abstractions come into view.

Lastly - although it doesn't very much to say it - I think you would find me utterly pig-headed and independent-minded as a person. My problem in life is not narrowmindedness, but rather the opposite: I have none of those mental landmarks by which other people direct their thoughts. Why do you think I chose to write in such a showy, aphoristic style? They aren't my opinions, because I have none. Maybe I was being too provocative, but I personally enjoy thought for its own sake. I am plagued at all times by a superabundance of my own thoughts.

You claim life is not worth the strife because you have emotional baggage which gives you a pessimistic tone, and you also claim to KNOW that there is no purpose to discovering the wholes in life that lead to greater wholes.

See, you clearly don't understand a word of what I've said. All I'm doing is making a division, or affecting a schism, between logic, if you like, and 'life' - that is, life as we live, breathe and enjoy it. And by the way, there isn't a trace of Wittgenstein's thought in anything I've said - and for that matter, anybody else really. But you keep on telling yourself that all my messages are plagiarized.

PS: When did I say that there is no 'picture forming reality'? In my estimations, we can't even know that. Why you keep banging on about it I don't know. It's because you don't understand I suppose.

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 33yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that ChrisD is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I've read every post in this thread so far and I believe it is you Decius who is closed minded. Wittgenstien tries to show you the flaws in your beliefs and then you just make up more bullshit that supposedly backs it up. Philosophical forums are useless I see... the only true philosophical discussion can be done in person, I'm sure Socrates would agree. It's impossible to continually show someone's flaws in thier view through posts as it just takes too much god damn time. What is it called? logical deduction?

To your view of attempting to answers these questions, decius, as well as see the 'greater picture' I want to refer to WizardsLogic's theory or whatever you wanna call it to the definition of this reality. He, step by step, broke down each dimension mathematically. The 3rd dimension can only be defined as 'expansion'. Expansion never ends. Once you find those pistons of the car and figure out we're just a small part of this greater reality, then what does that reality make up? lol. It goes on forever my friend, at least in your view. We of course live in 4 dimensions, adding the dimension of time but that's irrelevant. We're stuck, we don't have full understanding of time or how it works. So go ahead and don't reply, don't painstakingly try to rip apart anyone elses posts because you're 'right' and we're 'wrong'. I hope it's nice having the one true view of this world, God.

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"The truth will set you on fire"
 34yrs • M •
patmac1313 is new to Captain Cynic and has less than 15 posts. New members have certain restrictions and must fill in CAPTCHAs to use various parts of the site.
ok think about this..... your mind is all that you have and all that you ever have... assume that there's nothing bigger than what's right here on Earth.... if you look at it that way, the human mind is the most powerful and important thing in the known universe... if this life is all that exists... then might as well make the most use of it as possible, before you are rotting in the ground and being eaten by worms.... you quote those philosophers, but they are doing the same thing that criminals are right now... there just decayed..... there worth nothing at the moment, but they made the most of what they could do..... what i've found is that life is pointless.... but it is also worth everything.... ITS ALL THATS HERE!.... suicide is just cutting short the little time you have that you are a conscious being... the only thing that i've found that is truly worth living for is close relationships with other people.... all these thoughts that plaugue your mind.... there's lots and lots of other people out there who have the same thoughts plaguing there mind.... i realized that the world becomes a very manageable and even a happy place when you share whats deep in your mind....

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 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that wittgensteins is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I'm sick of this thread now. All I'll say is that Chris is absolutely right (of course I would say that) when he points out the absurdity of trying to have a philosophical discussion on an internet forum! It's so frustratingly difficult to say what you want to say! The reason why I keep returning is my suspicion that I might be wrong... is that why you do it Decius? I know I have spoken some certified crap in this thread, but I was actually having a joke. Largely, I was expressing my frustration at the shallowness of discussions on this site. When I actually get serious and try to lay the ground work for proper discussion, you tell me to think for myself! Pal, the 'information' is the meat of the discussion! You repeatedly ignored my serious posts and referred to my more glib ones, one of which you erroneously paraphrased as asserting that "there is no picture forming the greater whole". I won't say that this didn't appear to be the case - maybe it was badly expressed. But that it is certainly not what I meant!

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 32yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angel Of Death is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
no it's not impossible to have philosophical discussions on this site, I can vouch for that-but if you try to bring in each other's personalities as is the case in this site, then indeed it is not only useless but stupid. How can you guyz just make ridiculous assumptions about each other when u havn't even met each other.

Nyway, dun see the problem here, everybody agrees that there is a greater whole right?

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"I'll heal ur woundz I'll set u free, I m jesus christ on xtacy"
 32yrs • M
A CTL of 1 means that awakendwraith is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.

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"Why cry for those that often cry? Instead, help them smile, and smile for those that smile."
Is Life Worth the Strife? - Page 2
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