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  1. #1
    alchemist Legion's Avatar
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    Default Is there a True Good? And other such questions.

    I have recently been considering the problem of what is truly "Good". Some may say that happiness is in itself good. Others say that God is good, and following the law of God is good. Still others will claim that goodness is found in structures, that achieving great things is where goodness lies, or fulfilling our proper functioning.

    It seems that, whatever our conception of the good, it is our minds that decides that it is good, and our minds are wrought with illusions and delusions. So when we have the feeling that happiness is itself a good thing, this is only a trick of the brain - the program that we run on flicked a switch that says "do this". And if God is good, but we are not God, how can we truly know the Will of God? It is only ever man's interpretation. And why should it ultimately matter if we achieve great things, or if we live a healthy life? We are programmed to do these things. We are programmed to think certain things are good, but where is the ultimate justification? Is there any?

    And what of Free Will? Some say the very concept of Free Will is a contradiction. For Freedom is acausal, and Will operates in the world of causality. Anything which is free can never effect the world of matter which is determined, and so any feelings we have of free will are necessarily delusions, for a feeling influences matter, and anything which is free can not, insofar as it is free, influence anything else.

    And what is God Itself, but a conception of the human mind? Albeit a universal, perhaps ingrained conception, but only something the mind uses as a notion of that which the universe, and all universes, spring from.

    And what is truth, but a fixed idea, which is somehow born, and conquers its attackers? Could we say that it is true, that what lies in our consciousness, is simply there? That, though there may be delusions, the existence of those delusions, as we are constantly aware of, is true in the moment that it is, and then is true no longer? But, so long as there is something, is this truth?

    Just some musings. Basic shit.



    What is Good, What is Free, What is Will, What is God, What is Truth, What is Is?

  2. #2
    likes this gromit's Avatar
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    Yeah man. You can get lost thinking of all that stuff.

    I find good and God in living. In interactions with others, kindness. In our beautiful planet, as I spend time out in the woods or mountains, or by the ocean. Inspiration from people who fight injustice, then I feel like I can maybe do my own small part as well.

    Reflection is of course very worthwhile, just don't get lost in it!
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  3. #3
    Wake, See, Sing, Dance Cellmold's Avatar
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    No.
    'One of (Lucas) Cranach's masterpieces, discussed by (Joseph) Koerner, is in it's self-referentiality the perfect expression of left-hemisphere emptiness and a precursor of post-modernism. There is no longer anything to point to beyond, nothing Other, so it points pointlessly to itself.' - Iain McGilChrist

    Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
    "Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
    Piglet was comforted by this.
    - A.A. Milne.

  4. #4
    alchemist Legion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gromit View Post
    Yeah man. You can get lost thinking of all that stuff.

    I find good and God in living. In interactions with others, kindness. In our beautiful planet, as I spend time out in the woods or mountains, or by the ocean. Inspiration from people who fight injustice, then I feel like I can maybe do my own small part as well.

    Reflection is of course very worthwhile, just don't get lost in it!
    What would be wrong with getting lost in it (not "what would be wrong" in the "there is no such thing as wrong" way that this thread is hinting at, I just mean in your opinion)? I agree that it would be bad, as I have gotten lost in my thoughts before, but I would like to know why so that I can know where to draw the line.

    I can get out of the problem quite easily, like this:
    - either there is no ultimate good, in which case it ultimately makes no difference what anyone, including myself, does
    or
    - there is an ultimate good, in which case certain choices are preferrable to others

    If, on the one hand, you can do anything and it doesn't matter, and on the other hand, it does matter, well, you may as well live as though it does matter, just in case the other view is wrong.

    And so I look at "what should I do now?" and I naturally have answers, and the answers I have at the time seem like the best ones to go by until I find better answers.

    Things like, living a healthy life, being a kind person, fighting to save the planet from destruction, having the most intense experiences I can on the one hand, or remaining free from the ups and downs of life on the other hand.

    And so too of free will. It makes no difference to ANYTHING whether there is free will or not. So what good will it do supposing that you have it or not? Tbh, I did away with the free will question many years ago when I decided the question was meaningless.

    And I did away with the question of the good, when I decided that positive experience was the key. But now I'm not so sure.
    Likes gromit liked this post

  5. #5
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    It is hard to say, I mean anything good has potential to become evil, and vice versa. I am wondering if free will is more a result of individual perception than anything. You have to wonder what good is to each different human too. For example, your pet has worms, so the worm is therefore evil, but is the worm's intent to be evil, and is what the worm doing evil from a survival standpoint? So is the worm *truly* evil?

  6. #6
    alchemist Legion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by levinlady View Post
    It is hard to say, I mean anything good has potential to become evil, and vice versa. I am wondering if free will is more a result of individual perception than anything. You have to wonder what good is to each different human too. For example, your pet has worms, so the worm is therefore evil, but is the worm's intent to be evil, and is what the worm doing evil from a survival standpoint? So is the worm *truly* evil?
    I think free will, and all of these other concepts, are just a matter of perception, yes. But at the same time I believe that these perceptions in fact reflect fundamental truths about reality. Free will exists to our mind because it exists on a fundamental level, like a fractal. I have no reason really to think this, I just believe it to be the case.

    As for good and evil, it seems you are suggesting that these are just a relation between different parts of reality. A is good to B because it helps B. But it would not make sense to say A is good in itself. There is something highly unsatisfying about this. However, we could then say that help is good in itself. Hm.

  7. #7
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    good and evil don't really exist.
    Good result (vs. Soton)...still have to go #Arsene

    Tengo los conocimientos estardiar....no hay un motivo para estar al tanto de la reunión que sucedió hace mucho tiempo ....

  8. #8
    Listening Oaky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danseen View Post
    good and evil don't really exist.
    As long as the concept is a properly formulated construct in the mind of an individual it does exist.

  9. #9
    Senior Member danseen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oaky View Post
    As long as the concept is a properly formulated construct in the mind of an individual it does exist.
    I don't believe they even exist as mental constructs..
    Good result (vs. Soton)...still have to go #Arsene

    Tengo los conocimientos estardiar....no hay un motivo para estar al tanto de la reunión que sucedió hace mucho tiempo ....

  10. #10
    Listening Oaky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danseen View Post
    I don't believe they even exist as mental constructs..
    By such reasoning, mental constructs themselves do not exist. Or you believe in the predisposition of mental constructs, a rather bizarre thought when we start to play into the understanding of psychology.

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