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  1. #1
    Senior Member Misty_Mountain_Rose's Avatar
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    Default The MonkeySphere

    A thread I was in earlier reminded me of this:

    What is the Monkeysphere? | Cracked.com

    Some of it is tongue-in-cheek, and I should issue a mild language alert if you go to read it, but overall, the concept makes sense and I tend to believe the truth of it.

    The idea is that we, as humans, only have the capacity to consider a very low number of people as 'people'. Everyone else fades into the background as 'them' and not 'us'. (They say the number is around 150 people)

    This includes everyone that you know... friends, family, co-workers, etc, etc. According to the article, once this maximum level is reached, you begin prioritizing people as either 'inside' or 'outside' the sphere of 'important'.

    An example being "Which would affect you PERSONALLY, more, your mother dying, or X thousands of people dying in an Earthquake halfway around the world."

    The main problem that they see with society in general is that we have created societies much larger than our brains were intended (or able) to handle... our 'circles' have gotten too big.

    In order to deal with this overwhelming feeling of responsibility for people that we naturally can't feel a true empathy for, things such as racism, stereotyping, etc comes into play, where we group people together to make their number more manageable, especially as the world grows more connected and you can suddenly see protestors in foreign countries being killed on YouTube. Suddenly a person who was just an 'idea' becomes a real, live person with a family and hobbies... who now tugs at your heart strings.

    The idea has merit, and the implications are huge... my Ni/Te has gone off the charts with it.

    Thoughts?
    Embrace the possibilities.

  2. #2
    Senior Member SecantSquared's Avatar
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    very interesting. something i'd like to think about. however, i feel that my circle is, in general, much smaller, and significantly more selective. my personal opinion, or variant, is, of course, irrelevant. however, personally, i find that i am sooo disconnected from people that aren't in that circle that, for example, i find the death of protesters regrettable, but it doesn't really mean much to me, and i forget about it shortly thereafter.

    How about all of you? how do you feel about these situations?
    When they discover the center of the universe, a lot of people will be disappointed to discover they are not it.
    - Bernard Bailey
    It is bad luck to be superstitious.
    - Andrew W. Mathis

    sp/sx/so

  3. #3
    Senior Member Misty_Mountain_Rose's Avatar
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    I think mine is a lot lower than than too... and I wonder how the MBTI types work with this theory...
    Embrace the possibilities.

  4. #4
    ish red no longer *sad* nightning's Avatar
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    I know of the study they did we brain size and group size... this is the first I've seen it used to support the "us vs them" mentality though. Although I suppose it's a natural step to take. But it's not surprising our minds aren't equipped to deal with large populations. Cultural evolution happens so much more rapidly than genetic evolution. Just one more thing besides obesity chalked up for maladaptive instincts.

    Is there anything we can do to correct this? I'm not sure if it's possible... certain the article suggests its ingrained and therefore we can't. The more interesting point would be is there a point to correct this? That your mother's life is worth more than the life of 5 strangers you see on the street, is more than 200 people who've died on a 9-11, is more than thousands of people who've died in a tsunami halfway around the world? This improper balance of the value of human life... For myself, I can only answer no.
    My stuff (design & other junk) lives here: http://nnbox.ca

  5. #5
    Senior Member Misty_Mountain_Rose's Avatar
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    The attachments themselves breed a kind of selfishness. Its kind of inherent and can't be helped. If you are close to someone, of course you don't want them to go away. So in the minds of the entire world population, if everyone has that mentality (which they most likely do in most cases), we're always bound to protecting our own, selfish interests.

    So... is it MORALLY WRONG to feel disinterested in the other people outside the sphere, or is it NATURAL? Up until the modern age of technology where news traveled slowly and things were not so connected, did these small circles have less anxiety or pressure to CARE about the rest of the world? Was it easier to live a selfish existence, even though it may not have been perceived as selfish? Is it wrong to have that selfishness?

    Example: Is say, the 'newfound' [responsibility for/guilt tripping of the non-caring] for thinking about the future of the worlds ozone or resources so things exist as they are for generations to come something outside the capability of a large mass of people? Is it an unnatural instinct that we're trying to overcome?

    It seems that with the advent of the internet, that has closed the gap worldwide and is making the unknown and obscure suddenly knowable, we are suddenly forced to widen (uncomfortably) the sphere of 'who is important'. Its forcing people to try to process the 'unnatural' thought that EVERYONE is important.
    Embrace the possibilities.

  6. #6
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Prior to WW 1 some of us thought there would be no more wars because the working classes of the various nations would refuse to fight one another.

    But it was a false hope as the working class was happy to kill anyone from a foreign nation.

    And today it is obvious there are no reciprocal relations between the working classes of the nations.

    In fact we remain armed to the teeth, and even the Iranian working class, struggling to have a fair election, still want nuclear weapons for national pride and to kill Jews.

    Reciprocal relations don't exist at the national level. And it remains true that nations have no permanent friends, only permanent interests.

    So it is no surprise that reciprocal relations barely exist at the personal level. And in place of reciprocity, we substitute MBTI.

    And the cult of MBTI continues to recruit dependent schoolgirls and advise them to leave their parents at the first opportunity.

    This is, of course, classic cult behaviour.

    And the mavens of MBTI continue to push the interests of the cult - uninterested in evidence or even common decency, much less reciprocity.

    And so the personal interest is reflected in the national interest. And the national interest is reflected in the personal interest.

  7. #7
    ish red no longer *sad* nightning's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Misty_Mountain_Rose View Post
    It seems that with the advent of the internet, that has closed the gap worldwide and is making the unknown and obscure suddenly knowable, we are suddenly forced to widen (uncomfortably) the sphere of 'who is important'. Its forcing people to try to process the 'unnatural' thought that EVERYONE is important.
    Yes I think you're right that as "the world become smaller" we're forced to interact with more people and at least "put on" the attitude that these people are important. There's also the big push for caring about individuals, each one separately, all 100,000 of them that you might potentially interact with... Personalized became the new keyword... (funny how a radio ad just now was mentioning about personalized services lol) Now if we assume it's unnatural, then does "personalized" anything becomes just an act? How long will it take for personalized to be degraded into individuals having choices but you're in no way "special"? It's a scary thought...
    My stuff (design & other junk) lives here: http://nnbox.ca

  8. #8
    にゃん runvardh's Avatar
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    I figure if you at least aren't treating them like dogs it shouldn't be a crime. Is every human being on this planet supposed to be near and dear to your heart? No, but that's no reason to treat them like shit either. It sucks when others don't understand the value of that, but one can't control the actions of others, just your own. I chose to care for and deal the best I can with my inner circle and try to be civil to the rest. That's all I can do, and it's all I can teach the next generation if given the chance. Otherwise, we are innately selfish creatures, deal with it...
    Dreams are best served manifest and tangible.

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    I accept no responsibility, what so ever, for the fact that I exist; I do, however, accept full responsibility for what I do while I exist.

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  9. #9
    triple nerd score poppy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    So it is no surprise that reciprocal relations barely exist at the personal level. And in place of reciprocity, we substitute MBTI.

    And the cult of MBTI continues to recruit dependent schoolgirls and advise them to leave their parents at the first opportunity.
    I understand your earlier points, but what do you mean by this?

  10. #10
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by poppy View Post
    I understand your earlier points, but what do you mean by this?
    As I understand it, it is against the rules for me to mention names. So I am limited to making a general statement.

    Nonetheless it seems to be literally true.

    And I understand that this is unwelcome to those who believe in MBTI. However this is a tolerant and well run site and allows me to make principled criticism.

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