is it all relative?

since everything is made of atoms, then wouldnt we be no more superior to a table?

i mean, humans consider themselves as the most intelligent beings on earth, but couldnt we just be perceiving it differenty?

It depends on what you mean by relative.

Grandfather clocks are “made of atoms” and so are the most powerful computers made today. Aren’t computers superior to grandfather clocks?

only in the way that they function…

and by realtive i mean that everything is random but related to each other…not one thing is superior to another, not one thing inferior to another

A superior state in the universe, as I see it, is when there is an organization of information to such an extent that it aquires the ability to regulate itself and “progress” at an equal to faster rate than its disintegration.

Such a state is the human organism. If you consider it in its contexts and under the terms that it has adaptive abilties, but quite possible no ultimate purpose or goal, the meaninglessness of an ultimatim does not depreciate its agility. You look at its talents, its capabilities, and watch the rate at which things are overcome.

I know its possible that our development is in vain, and that there is no definite standard to determine what is indeed “superior” in an apparantly pointless struggle.

But this is thinking too much. I’ve had time on my hands to have thought of that.

Humans know too much. They have made a metaphysical surrender to fate, I think.

The sense of meaninglessness hits hard from eighteen to thirty-five, then I think we sort-of accept it and don’t mention it again. Most of you guys are entering into this intellectual reaction right now if you are in your late teens.

I did it. Now I seek the impossible. Its the only thing left to do, and if God exists, you get extra credit.

You can’t lose.

Maybe we should try out Satyr’s Hellenism.

That would be like an oak tree comparing itself to a pine tree. Which one is superior. I wonder what the trees think?

Ummm. . . consciousness?

You people do realize that inanimate objects have no consciousness, that’s why they are inferior to us. We are the only beings on earth with a level of consciousness that allows us to think abstractly and go beyond sense perception. To limit the comparison of a human and a table to the physical understanding of atoms is foolish.

What you should be wondering is how one can relate consciousness to atomism. The Greek philosophers would say that the soul is what moves the body and makes us superior. The soul is incorporeal, and that is why we are “superior” because the table cannot move itself, think for itself, or maintain any level of conscious understanding.

Yes, humans are just more atoms moving about. It is all completely without meaning or value and whatever happens to us is completely irrelevant to the universe.

But the universe is mindless so whether something is “meaningful” to it, is a nonsensical concept, or at least as irrelevant itself.

However, humanity isn’t irrelevant, meaningless, or valueless to me because I’m a human. :slight_smile:

Superior is an overly generic adjective. It needs support.

If something is superior then it has to be superior in some specific way.

For instance, a human is superior to a table in the complexity of his or her arrangment of atoms. The pattern is what makes the difference.

Our intelligence is in our ability to create a goal, assess the current state of affairs, and then take action to change the current state of affairs incrementally to make it into the goal state.

In the fundemental substance of composition every thing is the same as everything else. However, we don’t operate at that level. A diamond and a piece of granite are both made of atoms but we still value the diamond more than the granite. (In most cases anyway.)

Molecues matter more to our operations than atoms.

In another example, powerful computers are superior at doing calculations than grandfather clocks and grandfather clocks are superior for placement in a home by a home decorator than powerful computers.

Useful is a better term.

useful? us desroying nature is useful?

Why not destroy nature… it is all just atoms anyway.

Percisely because that everything is relative, we are superior to a piece of wood with four legs.

The only thing that’s absolute is the fact that everything is relative.

:astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished:

:astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished:

:astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished: :astonished:

That statement would make my predicate logic teacher roll over in his grave, and he isn’t even dead yet.

ponders a while…
rubs chin


but what a negative thing to think of! now im depressed.
i mean, somehow it doesnt feel right to destroy nature

Ahh. Maybe there is more to nature than the mechanistic?

Hey GCT, I have plenty of statments like that, so I use to wonder: am I nut?, until I read some Kant.

um…how did you deduce that?

I said that a computer is more useful than a grandfather clock if you wanted to log on to ILP to have an inane argument, but that a grandfather clock is more useful if you wanted to observe beauty and craftmanship. My point is that nothing is superior and nothing is inferior. Everything is incomparably unique. Like a pine tree comparing itself to a flower - the thought is ridiculous.


Your post reminds me of the words of Master Lao Tau.

Tao Te Ching Chapter II

  1. Everyone knows the beautiful to be beautiful – then there is ugliness.

  2. Everyone knows the good to be good – then there is bad.

  3. Being and nothing produce one another,

  4. difficult and easy perfect one another,

  5. long and short shape one another,

  6. high and low fulfil one another,

  7. tune and accompaniment harmonize with one another,

  8. before and after follow one another –

  9. these are constants.

All of these apparent opposites (inferior/superior) are mutually arrising. Although they seem to be at odds, they are actually inseperable.