Welcome to Atheist Discussion, a new community created by former members of The Thinking Atheist forum.

Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Are human beings inherently selfish?
#51

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 02:50 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 02:49 PM)Free Wrote: That still doesn't answer my question.

Then that's a "you" problem, because I answered it.   Deadpan Coffee Drinker

Unfortunately, you don't seem to understand what my question actually is.

Yes, natural selection is why things evolve. Yes, the environment invokes natural selection. 

But what produces the will of anything to survive?
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
The following 1 user Likes Free's post:
  • Thumpalumpacus
Reply
#52

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 02:49 PM)Free Wrote: That still doesn't answer my question.

But it is finally good to see you posting beyond your comfort zone.
Reply
#53

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 02:56 PM)Free Wrote: But what produces the will of anything to survive?

Are you speaking of a human's will to survive or are you intending to turn this into a purely silly philosophical endeavor whereby connecting origin to survival somehow magically means what you want it to mean?

However, I will attempt to hope you mean the former.

Survival is simply the means of persisting. Correct? Who wouldn't want that. I see it all the time in the nursing home where I work.
Persistence is life.
Reply
#54

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:01 PM)Phaedrus Wrote: [quote="Free" pid='140612' dateline='1566312983']


Survival is simply the means of persisting. Correct? Who wouldn't want that. I see it all the time in the nursing home where I work.
Persistence is life.

What compels us to persist?
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#55

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:05 PM)Free Wrote: What compels us to persist?

I'm just me. I cannot speak for the "us" for whom you want me to respond.
I personally understand that persisting is merely another breath.
Reply
#56

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 02:41 PM)Free Wrote: I don't see how this actually answers my question. Although natural selection prunes the ones whose phenotypical expression is not sufficient to keep them alive long enough to reproduce, the ones that do survive long enough to produce do indeed evolve.

Do they evolve because they need to? Why do they need to?

Not all all animals need to evolve. Some are well-enough adapted to their environment that their phenotypes have been stable for millions of years.

Creatures don't simply decide to evolve in this or that direction. Species are sculpted by natural selection. A college-level biology course can give you much more depth than my short answers, but evolution is not teleological.

As for why animals want to live -- I'd imagine that natural selection would have snipped apathy to living out of the genome long ago.
The following 1 user Likes Thumpalumpacus's post:
  • Alan V
Reply
#57

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:09 PM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 02:41 PM)Free Wrote: I don't see how this actually answers my question. Although natural selection prunes the ones whose phenotypical expression is not sufficient to keep them alive long enough to reproduce, the ones that do survive long enough to produce do indeed evolve.

Do they evolve because they need to? Why do they need to?

Not all all animals need to evolve. Some are well-enough adapted to their environment that their phenotypes have been stable for millions of years.

The shark.

Quote:Creatures don't simply decide to evolve in this or that direction. Species are sculpted by natural selection. A college-level biology course can give you much more depth than my short answers, but evolution is not teleological.

As for why animals want to live -- I'd imagine that natural selection would have snipped apathy to living out of the genome long ago.

If the genome ever had apathy in the first place.

I understand 'fear' is a learned behaviour. The dodo showed no fear of anything, which caused it to be wiped out. Fear is what generates the need for self preservation. 

My whole point here is ... where does fear come from if it isn't already inherent? It's like ... how do you learn something if the means to learn it are not already within us?

How do we learn to be fearful?
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#58

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:46 PM)Free Wrote: How do we learn to be fearful?

It's trial and error.
When I was young, I touched a grill.
Why?
Because I had no idea what it would do to me.
I learned, however.
Touching the grill and learning that heat from that source hurts is what taught me to be fearful.

Or were you going for something more broad, as though you were the fear wizard leading an army?
Reply
#59

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:50 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 03:46 PM)Free Wrote: How do we learn to be fearful?

It's trial and error.
When I was young, I touched a grill.
Why?
Because I had no idea what it would do to me.
I learned, however.
Touching the grill and learning that heat from that source hurts is what taught me to be fearful.

Or were you going for something more broad, as though you were the fear wizard leading an army?

Therefore, you already had the fear within you that was induced.
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#60

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:54 PM)Free Wrote: Therefore, you already had the fear within you that was induced.

Incorrect. Then again, you are the magician of misdirection.
Reply
#61

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 03:56 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 03:54 PM)Free Wrote: Therefore, you already had the fear within you that was induced.

Incorrect. Then again, you are the magician of misdirection.

"Fear is a feeling induced by perceived danger or threat that occurs in certain types of organisms, which causes a change in metabolic and organ functions and ultimately a change in behavior"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear

Learn it.
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#62

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 04:00 PM)Free Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 03:56 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 03:54 PM)Free Wrote: Therefore, you already had the fear within you that was induced.

Incorrect. Then again, you are the magician of misdirection.

"Fear is a feeling induced by perceived danger or threat that occurs in certain types of organisms, which causes a change in metabolic and organ functions and ultimately a change in behavior"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear

Learn it.

I have certainly learned that you fear that which is irrational.
Reply
#63

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-19-2019, 09:36 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:
(08-19-2019, 09:03 PM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: Most humans are unreflective and equivocate on many topics without realizing it. It's the default until you begin analysis. 

I think equivocation is as fundamental a mistake as contradiction. Contradiciton is like trying to force a square peg into a round hole but failing because it simply doesn't fit ... whereas equivocation is like shoving a smaller square peg into a larger rectangular hole and mistakingly thinking it's a perfect fit when it isn't.

And of course you are special, and not one of the masses of the stupid, over which you , of course, are FAR superior. 
Snort.

(08-20-2019, 09:50 AM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: You are clearly amongst the stupid masses, lol. It takes one to know one—other smart people recognize the smart people ... hence why you "snort" at the idea of me being smart. Because you're a dumbfuck.


[Image: slapfight.gif]
[Image: signature%20The-Ascension-of-Iweko.jpg]
The following 2 users Like Dānu's post:
  • Phaedrus, Alan V
Reply
#64

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 04:05 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 04:00 PM)Free Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 03:56 PM)Phaedrus Wrote: Incorrect. Then again, you are the magician of misdirection.

"Fear is a feeling induced by perceived danger or threat that occurs in certain types of organisms, which causes a change in metabolic and organ functions and ultimately a change in behavior"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear

Learn it.

I have certainly learned that you fear that which is irrational.

Fear is induced by external stimuli. It cannot be induced unless it is present to begin with. The formation of fear is what occurs when the preservation of ourselves is threatened.
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#65

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 04:26 PM)Free Wrote: Fear is induced by external stimuli. It cannot be induced unless it is present to begin with.

Classic avoidance.
You provide a definition, while simultaneously avoiding the truth.
Reply
#66

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 04:31 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 04:26 PM)Free Wrote: Fear is induced by external stimuli. It cannot be induced unless it is present to begin with.

Classic avoidance.
You provide a definition, while simultaneously avoiding the truth.

WTF? You haven't said anything.
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#67

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 04:37 PM)Free Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 04:31 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 04:26 PM)Free Wrote: Fear is induced by external stimuli. It cannot be induced unless it is present to begin with.

Classic avoidance.
You provide a definition, while simultaneously avoiding the truth.

WTF? You haven't said anything.

Correction: I stated that which you choose to ignore.
Reply
#68

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 04:39 PM)Phaedrus Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 04:37 PM)Free Wrote:
(08-20-2019, 04:31 PM)Phaedrus Wrote: Classic avoidance.
You provide a definition, while simultaneously avoiding the truth.

WTF? You haven't said anything.

Correction: I stated that which you choose to ignore.

Which is?
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#69

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-20-2019, 09:50 AM)EvieTheAvocado Wrote: It takes one to know one—other smart people recognize the smart people...

Whilst that's obviously true, it's also a fact that most less intelligent people recognise smarter people.
My IQ is far lower than, say, Michigan-born Astrophysicist Chris Hirata's 225, but that in and of itself
by no means makes me unintelligent, or less than average—quite the contrary in fact.  The "average"
IQ in Australia is 98 (and the US), compared with Hong Kong and Singapore's 108 at top spot.
Richard Lynn & Tatu Vanhanen, 2006.

Quote:And last I checked you're [Bucky Ball] one of those people who dislikes philosophy? Is that right? If so then OBVIOUSLY you're amongst the unreflective. Philosophical = reflective. Unphilosophical = unreflective. Even the bad philosophers at least tried to be reflective ... unlike the plebs. You're just a pleb. One of the shitwits.

Hang on a moment there mate... you just before said that "it takes one to know one".  Does this mean
you're admitting to being simply a pleb or a shitwit LOL.  At any rate, youre understanding of the term
"philosophical" is limited if you think reflection is one of its defining metrics.

I too believe philosophy is vastly overrated as an alleged fount of all knowledge. It's a highly abstracted
discipline with little if any bearing on objective reality—somewhat similar to religion, or art, or literature,
with none of it actually qualifying as knowledge until proven scientifically.

Philosopher Colin McGinn PhD wants to rename philosophy as "ontical science", as he reckons the term
"philosopher" is outdated in the scientific era. He desperately wants to redefine it as one of the sciences
in order to give it more status.   What a wanker LOL.
I'm a creationist;   I believe that man created God.
The following 2 users Like SYZ's post:
  • Alan V, Szuchow
Reply
#70

Are human beings inherently selfish?
Popcorn2
The following 1 user Likes Alan V's post:
  • Phaedrus
Reply
#71

Are human beings inherently selfish?
"I too believe philosophy is vastly overrated as an alleged fount of all knowledge. It's a highly abstracted
discipline with little if any bearing on objective reality—somewhat similar to religion, or art, or literature,
with none of it actually qualifying as knowledge until proven scientifically. "

Just so.

I did a year in philosophy at university . Enjoyed metaphysics, but logic not so much, (I saw it as a form of algebra, and didn't enjoy it)

I decided not to pursue philosophy after going to the Uni Philosophy club, once. A guy doing his Masters presented a paper. He examined a famous paradox from the sophist, Zeno Of Elea; viz; using an arrow in flight to prove that motion is impossible. Gave me headache, so I went home, resolving to do no more philosophy, at least at university .

OF COURSE philosophy is crucially important to us; we all use it every day, in the very way we think, and in the way we solve problems. I'm simply not interested in the mental gymnastics of some relatively modern philosophers. I liked Plato, when I studied him in 1976. .

Not especially liking the medieval philosophers such as say Spinoza or modern philosopher such as Sartre doesn't make one unreflective. Rather it may be a sign , of a functioning bullshit detector

. Socrates said "The unreflective life is not worth living' . As often is the case with aphorisms, this falls apart when examined. . 'Most people on earth ' lack either the mental acuity, the inclination , or the time to navel gaze. Abstract thinking about life is difficult on an empty stomach .


"Most people would rather die than think. Most people do" Bertrand Russell . That is one of the truer aphorism I've come across. Perhaps most people don't think because they don't need to; there are always people in society to think for them. I truly think that for the bulk of human kind life is very much a matter of "If ignorance is bliss t'is folly to be wise"
The following 1 user Likes grympy's post:
  • SYZ
Reply
#72

Are human beings inherently selfish?
Yes!

That being said, you have to be, to an extent. I have to make sure I am ok, before I can make anyone else is.

Humans can truly be brotherly, compassionate, and selfless. There are those that I would give my life for in a second. But, if I don't take care of me first, I can't begin to take care of them.
Reply
#73

Are human beings inherently selfish?
Quote:
(08-20-2019, 03:46 PM)Free Wrote: Do they evolve because they need to? Why do they need to?

Not all all animals need to evolve. Some are well-enough adapted to their environment that their phenotypes have been stable for millions of years.

The shark.

Exactly. Crocodilians as well -- and many other species.

Quote:
Quote:As for why animals want to live -- I'd imagine that natural selection would have snipped apathy to living out of the genome long ago.

If the genome ever had apathy in the first place.

Apathy could be the phenotypical expression of several different hypothetical alleles. Toothed sharks, for instance, are often apathetic about what they consume. They've been found with pieces of oil drums and tin cans in their stomachs.

Quote:I understand 'fear' is a learned behaviour. The dodo showed no fear of anything, which caused it to be wiped out. Fear is what generates the need for self preservation.

I think it's both. I think in less-intelligent animals, fear is pretty much instinctual, which hints at a genetic underpinning. I think in more developed animals, it is both learned, and genetic, and can be to varying degrees unlearned.

Quote:My whole point here is ... where does fear come from if it isn't already inherent? It's like ... how do you learn something if the means to learn it are not already within us?

Animals that don't startle at the pounce of the predator are probably less likely to live to reproductive age.

Quote:How do we learn to be fearful?

As I said, I think this particular emotional example is both nature and nurture.
Reply
#74

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-21-2019, 12:54 AM)Thumpalumpacus Wrote:
Quote:
(08-20-2019, 03:46 PM)Free Wrote: Do they evolve because they need to? Why do they need to?

Not all all animals need to evolve. Some are well-enough adapted to their environment that their phenotypes have been stable for millions of years.

The shark.

Exactly. Crocodilians as well -- and many other species.

Quote:
Quote:As for why animals want to live -- I'd imagine that natural selection would have snipped apathy to living out of the genome long ago.

If the genome ever had apathy in the first place.

Apathy could be the phenotypical expression of several different hypothetical alleles. Toothed sharks, for instance, are often apathetic about what they consume. They've been found with pieces of oil drums and tin cans in their stomachs.

Quote:I understand 'fear' is a learned behaviour. The dodo showed no fear of anything, which caused it to be wiped out. Fear is what generates the need for self preservation.

I think it's both. I think in less-intelligent animals, fear is pretty much instinctual, which hints at a genetic underpinning. I think in more developed animals, it is both learned, and genetic, and can be to varying degrees unlearned.

Good informative answers.

Thumbs Up

Quote:
Quote:My whole point here is ... where does fear come from if it isn't already inherent? It's like ... how do you learn something if the means to learn it are not already within us?

Animals that don't startle at the pounce of the predator are probably less likely to live to reproductive age.

But does that mean they have no fear at all?
Welcome to the Atheist Forums on AtheistDiscussion.org
Reply
#75

Are human beings inherently selfish?
(08-21-2019, 02:08 AM)Free Wrote: But does that mean they have no fear at all?

I guess that depends on what we mean by "fear". I don't know the qualia that animals experience. It seems to me there's a difference between startle and fear, and that difference probably would vary with the intelligence of the creature involved. I imagine that smarter animals able to project consequences are capable of conscious fear, while the dumber or dumbest ones are probably less aware of "fear" as an emotion.

It's all a guess on my part, so don't take anything above as any statement of fact.
The following 1 user Likes Thumpalumpacus's post:
  • Free
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)