Opposing views on life

There seem to be two main ways one can look at purpose of life. One view claims that we have already reached our destination as far as evolution is concerned. We have attained self awareness and no longer live just to survive. This is it. This is the end, the Plymouth rock, the land of milk-and-honey. We can (and should) finally enjoy life and seek happiness in all things. You, your children, their children, etcetera, etcetera, till the end of humanity. This view seems to be based on acceptance of self-as is. The other view claims that we cannot rest and must strive for better and greater things (will-to-power kind of philosophy). The end itself might not be visible or known to us, and maybe there is no end; but the point of this kind of philosophy is that pursuit of happiness would slow or deter us from progressing or evolving into something, hopefully, greater. This view seems to be based on rejection of self as is.

Evolution never stops. :laughing:

It just jumps platforms, enviroments and contexts.

Roll on homo-technica-mentalis.

The laws of diminishing returns means even a quest for happiness is endless. Abundant cake today only means the invention of marzipan tomorrow. Ad infinitum.

The end-game is there is no end-game, for there is no resting on one’s laurels and reaping the benefits of one’s gains indefinitely down the family line - maintenance costs are always involved, or civilisations crumble if those costs cannot be met.

I was referring more to a passive vs. active ideologies/cultures/ways of life. Yes, there might be some change involved even in passive cultures, but the difference, comparatively, so negligible it’s not even worth mentioning. Cultures/nations that glorified pastoral/idyllic life have not achieved many technological advances and that’s because they were not even aspiring towards it, their goal was to be left alone and enjoy their way of life, pretty much same today as one thousand years ago.

I think you should read “Guns, germs and steel” and get back to me. And if you have already, then shame on you.

What’s wrong in thinking for yourself?

The same things that go wrong when people decide to little DIY around the house.

I don’t want to live by someone else’s instruction manual.

…and how ironic it is that as we get older/near retirement age, that we lean towards the natural way of life again, and shun the hi-tech world of our youth!

Pandora, your Autostereogram is interesting, to say the least. That topic in and of itself would make a decent tangental discussion, although from my limited experience it seems apparent that most do not actually prefer the raw truth, but rather ‘it’ as they would have it (read: rubbing their ideologies the right way). The rejection of ideologies and bending/rationalizations leading away from the truth then become strong and multiplied, to the point of obfuscation.

That being said, is it necessary to narrow down the possible ways of looking at life to merely two ‘main’ avenues?

The inference of your thoughts indicates a propensity (perhaps narcissistically, if that is even a word, although not intended as a personal slight as it is endemic to humanity as a whole one, really) for evolution to be concerned with reaching and ‘end-point’ with respect to our genetic lineage.

Yet it is not.

If one were religiously-inclined, one might see the parallels between this line of thinking and the Creationist ideology of Adam plucking the apple/forbidden fruit from the tree. Perhaps.

The concepts of striving for better and greater things are not those based upon evolutionary ideals but rather those based within the human desire to want more than what is necessary, and while the reasonings behind these desires are undoubtedly numerous in varied natures, the core ‘want’ is undeniable.

There are those for whom Life is more about understanding and harmony; appreciating the moment(s) and striving to become one with their surroundings/environments, as would seem most appropriate given that we are supposedly ‘advanced’ and ‘civilized’ beings as it were.

As in Nature and the Universe in general, the pursuit of anything generally tends to encounter an opposing force of relatively similar proportion (if not greater, given the physics), so to pursue happiness would seem to be a folly from the outset. Would happiness not be more forthcoming if it were obtained through the integration of Humanity’s advances with those elements of our world/societies/cultures that are necessary and essential for survival, so that both may be achieved (perhaps one day), and thereby instilling the happiness that we so voraciously hunt down and often forcefully attempt to subjugate to our wills?

Even in nature, black and white combine to form infinite shades of greys and such, so is it possible that humanity, too, has many ways of looking at the nature or purpose of life, rather than trying to create definitive ‘main’ ways?

It would seem that intelligence ironically hinders the human ability to understand and become more fully integrated with Life, which then seems to lead towards a degeneration of that evolution. That in itself is a very sobering thought.

Globalization, it would seem, along with technology, appears to be diminishing the chances that either of your ‘main’ ways of looking at life will be issues for discussion/theoretics in the coming ages.

As for thinking for one’s self, it would seem the more preferred state of being, given the statement above and the ‘sheep’ mentality that is prevalent in today’s societies/world.

Tab’s comparison of individual thinking to ‘do-it-yourself’ handypeople is really a non-comparison. The examples of ‘professionals’ (many of whom are ‘sheep-thinkers’ themselves) who do poor work and often dangerous work are numerous.

There were times not-too-long past when an individual was required to do/figure out everything for themselves, or else they would not survive. Along the path to the homogeny that we call ‘modern-day society’ we have taken these abilities away from people, created ‘specialists’ and therefore paved the way to a sure decline in the evolution of the human brain.

Did it ever occur to you, Tab, that the evolution of the human brain is directly proportional to the challenges presented to us by/within the environment and the need to accomplish certain tasks? Depriving the brain of the fundamental building blocks of it’s own pathways voids the very essense of that which we call ‘humanity’.

Without the ability to reason, deduce, formulate and apply ingenuity, we would have remained in the trees, or worse - never have come to pass.

Magsj wrote about the irony of the rejection of technology as we enter our latter years, but is there real irony there or merely wisdom and understanding? How is that ironic? Youth generally is narrow-sighted as well as narrow-minded with respects to understanding and experience when it comes to Life.

Can you eat hi-tech? Is it nourishing? Will it sustain life as a whole, and not the pinprick that it is designed and ‘programmed’ for? That is highly doubtful if not foolish at best.

Perhaps the goal would be to somehow slow down the voracious forward pace of society and instead instill an appreciation and understanding of that which matters most; that which would be most beneficial to our surroundings, and thereby to ourselves as well.

Without our world, we are nothing…yet Life will continue without us, n’est pas?