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Freddy

The intellectual ability to grow above our evolutionary instincts.

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One theme I often run into with some members, is that, with our intelligence, humans can rise above instincts and emotions.

But how often do we succeed?

The ability dose not automatically guarantee that we do. Take smoking cigarets. For example.... How is that smarter then any other animal on earth? Based on this example we could argue that we are dumber. Our intelligence in this example has become more of a hinderance, then helpful.

With so many different opinions from so many different people, How can we honestly say humans are smarter then the average animal and will rise above primal instincts?

The majority of the time when faced with a life changing brilliant idea most of us completely dismiss it out of our primal instinct of pride for ourselves. Look at the idea of the world being round for example.

How can we rise above our humble DNA when we can't even agree on what is the one foundation of thoughts we can all agree, to base our existence?

Without a solide foundation on which to base our logical thoughts , our whole world views could be wrong and we wouldn't even know it.

With so much variables between everyone's opinions, and no consensus on how to rise above our primitive selves, how can anyone claim that we have taken any conscious steps forward?

If we have, maybe slightly but not in any extraordinary way. In my opinion. The idea of good and evil is for me a simple projection of what we perceive as good or bad to us at a instinctive level. That we have transformed that basic instict in a idea of ultimate good and ultimate evil doesn't impress me.

It's like deciding the whole universe revolves around our instinct of good for us bad for us. Isn't that almost as intelligent as smoking cigarettes?

If we are going to rise above our own stupidity, Then some kind of solide foundation has to be set. If we are to coincidently rise above our basic animal instinct, then we need a conscious logical foundation on which we can make intelligent decisions on and come to the right conclusion of the right decision to take, every time.

With everyone yelling in every direction like we see on this forum, I can't honestly say we are close to achieving anything that resembles, humans rising above their primal animal instinct.

Edited by Freddy

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The majority of the time when faced with a life changing brilliant idea most of us completely dismiss it out of our primal instinct of pride for ourselves. Look at the idea of the world being round for example.

Bad example. It was known the world was round as soon as people started plotting the paths of objects in the sky. The heliocentric universe was a better example.

In my opinion the human drive to obsess that leads to so many negative consequences is the same drive that leads to so many advances. Almost all of the inventions that changed the world were developed by someone that was obsessed with finding a solution. I don't think you can separate one from the other. i.e. we owe our world as much to the irrationality of obsession as to rational thought.

Edited by TimG

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If we are going to rise above our own stupidity, Then some kind of solide foundation has to be set. If we are to coincidently rise above our basic animal instinct, then we need a conscious logical foundation on which we can make intelligent decisions on and come to the right conclusion of the right decision to take, every time.

Well, I'd suggest using the adage; doing to others as we'd have them do to us. Simple, to the point, no ambiguity of terms, the notion exists in one way, shape or form or another across a wide range of cultures.

With everyone yelling in every direction like we see on this forum, I can't honestly say we are close to achieving anything that resembles, humans rising above their primal animal instinct.

It's probably worse than that - it's our political nature we need to rise above.

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I always liked this quote from Jeff Goldblum - as Ian Malcom:

"Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"

"Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"

""Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should", but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"

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One theme I often run into with some members, is that, with our intelligence, humans can rise above instincts and emotions.

But how often do we succeed?

...

With everyone yelling in every direction like we see on this forum, I can't honestly say we are close to achieving anything that resembles, humans rising above their primal animal instinct.

In many cases, why would we even want to "rise above" basic instincts? Those instincts are there for a good reason, Fight or flight in the face of danger. Pattern recognition. The desire to survive and to reproduce, etc. In fact, even altruism is a basic instinct built into humans (most people feel pleasure from helping someone else). Most people that talk about "rising above" basic instincts are talking about forcing some kind of "greater good" for "society" that in most cases only ends up poorly (communism, etc)

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In many cases, why would we even want to "rise above" basic instincts? Those instincts are there for a good reason, Fight or flight in the face of danger. Pattern recognition. The desire to survive and to reproduce, etc. In fact, even altruism is a basic instinct built into humans (most people feel pleasure from helping someone else). Most people that talk about "rising above" basic instincts are talking about forcing some kind of "greater good" for "society" that in most cases only ends up poorly (communism, etc)

The problem with rising above our instinct consciously is that, their is usually only one right way to act, and millions of wrong way. With more chances of getting it wrong then getting it right, It explains in a way why everyone thinks and act so different from one a other.

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I always liked this quote from Jeff Goldblum - as Ian Malcom:

"Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"

"Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"[/size]

"[/size]"Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"[/size], but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should"[/size]

I know, that child rearing only gets harder and harder as we introduce more foreign concepts that do not closely relate to our basic instinct's. The un-natural behaviours have to be constantly reminded several times before they take hold onto the children's minds. And they use them as defacto behaviour. Edited by Freddy

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Bad example. It was known the world was round as soon as people started plotting the paths of objects in the sky. The heliocentric universe was a better example.In my opinion the human drive to obsess that leads to so many negative consequences is the same drive that leads to so many advances. Almost all of the inventions that changed the world were developed by someone that was obsessed with finding a solution. I don't think you can separate one from the other. i.e. we owe our world as much to the irrationality of obsession as to rational thought.

The idea of a round earth was talked about in Greek's time. But only started to be accepted in 1522. 3000 years of denial is not long enough for you?

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Well, I'd suggest using the adage; doing to others as we'd have them do to us. Simple, to the point, no ambiguity of terms, the notion exists in one way, shape or form or another across a wide range of cultures.

It's probably worse than that - it's our political nature we need to rise above.

I agree, it dose existe among many different culture. But my argument is its not really rising above our own instinct, it's simply using our basic animal instinct of what we feel is good or bad for ourselves and applying it to others with imagination of being in their shoes.

Maybe that's why it relatively easily achievable. It's closely related to our basic instinct.

Edited by Freddy

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If humans were incapable of rising above primal instincts, we never would have come out of the caves. Our enormous intellectual capacity and ability to problem solve (versus reacting to the world on a purely instinctual level like most animals) is why we were able to become the dominant species on the planet. That and thumbs.

With so many different opinions from so many different people, How can we honestly say humans are smarter then the average animal and will rise above primal instincts?

The existence of differing opinions is itself evidence of our capacity to overcome our primal instincts.

Edited by Black Dog

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In many cases, why would we even want to "rise above" basic instincts? Those instincts are there for a good reason, Fight or flight in the face of danger. Pattern recognition. The desire to survive and to reproduce, etc. In fact, even altruism is a basic instinct built into humans (most people feel pleasure from helping someone else). Most people that talk about "rising above" basic instincts are talking about forcing some kind of "greater good" for "society" that in most cases only ends up poorly (communism, etc)

Forced communism. Cute concept. Shows a complete lack of understanding about what communism is though.

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The idea of a round earth was talked about in Greek's time. But only started to be accepted in 1522. 3000 years of denial is not long enough for you?

You are now making claims about 'what people believed' in 1500s? The Greeks did not simply talk about the earth being round. They estimated its diameter and the reason people were sceptical of Columbus was because they knew the distance across the ocean was too far for him to survive. Fortunately, Columbus ran into North America before he ran out of food.

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Forced communism. Cute concept. Shows a complete lack of understanding about what communism is though.

You cannot separate the theory from the practical problems that make it impossible to have a communist state without a repressive regime.

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You cannot separate the theory from the practical problems that make it impossible to have a communist state without a repressive regime.

I think its pretty clear that every state has to resort to repression to survive, either at it's establishment or to maintain it later.

Speaking of opposable thumbs and differing opinions - whether we emerged from caves or climbed down from the trees the first little monkeys probably did so to get out from under the thumb of some disagreeable tyrant that was making life unbearable.

Most human beings still display that fundamental yearning to this day.

Edited by eyeball

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You cannot separate the theory from the practical problems that make it impossible to have a communist state without a repressive regime.

Communism is the end of the historical process of capitalism. It's not something you create.

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If humans were incapable of rising above primal instincts, we never would have come out of the caves.

Not really. You just need a very small proportion (say 1% or less) of humans that are able to rise above primal instincts. Most people are not like Newton, Gauss, etc.

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Not really. You just need a very small proportion (say 1% or less) of humans that are able to rise above primal instincts. Most people are not like Newton, Gauss, etc.

I don't think that's even the point here really. Clearly, people are capable of rational thought, I'd say far more than 1% are able to think rationally and act based on their conscious thought rather than basic instincts some of the time, hopefully when it is advantageous for them to do so. In fact, in many aspects of our modern lives, there are no built in instinctual reactions to guide people and it is only higher order conscious thinking that can guide actions. But "rising above" instincts means having your instincts tell you one thing, and doing another. In cases where the instincts are at all applicable, this is rarely useful.

For example, if you see something that endangers you, either run or fight, totally reasonable and useful instinct... rising above it means being a pacifist that sits still while your enemies kill you... and that is something some religions/philosophies have indeed advocated as an example of "rising above your instincts". There are many other such examples. So when people talk about "rising above one's instincts", they aren't talking about thinking rationally when it is advantageous to do so (which almost all people at least sometimes do), such as in the course of your scientific work, rather they are talking about ignoring basic human instincts and doing the opposite, often to the direct detriment of oneself.

Edited by Bonam

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rising above it means being a pacifist that sits still while your enemies kill you...

Sounds like me when I was getting mugged and punched in the head.

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You cannot separate the theory from the practical problems that make it impossible to have a communist state without a repressive regime.

And I think that is due to humans still being very much functioning on a instinctive Level.

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Freddy, this is a great thread, a very important thread that asks questions that make us consider the fundamental purposes of what we do in our lives and why we do them. I'll take some time to think about yours and other responses in this thread and make a reply later...instead of instinctively responding right now, heh heh.

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Freddy, this is a great thread, a very important thread that asks questions that make us consider the fundamental purposes of what we do in our lives and why we do them. I'll take some time to think about yours and other responses in this thread and make a reply later...instead of instinctively responding right now, heh heh.

If we are going to head away from instinctive thinking, (and let's be honest, it can't be that bad if it got us to where we are today) Then a clear map should be drawn that we all can agree on, so that we don't lose site of each other and ourselves on our journey to this superior way of being.

As it stands the way I look at it, It's not achievable, It's not realistic. It can only exist in our imagination. Reality has other plans.

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The problem I see it is that individuals have no great trouble rising to intellectual heights someone above primal instincts. BUT: to fully understand human behaviour, you have to accept the Sex, Pride, Greed and Fear will ultimately rule all when collectivism takes over. It is not that 7Bn people are 7Bn x smarter than any one, but more like 1/7Bn as intelligent as a mob.

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The problem I see it is that individuals have no great trouble rising to intellectual heights someone above primal instincts. BUT: to fully understand human behaviour, you have to accept the Sex, Pride, Greed and Fear will ultimately rule all when collectivism takes over. It is not that 7Bn people are 7Bn x smarter than any one, but more like 1/7Bn as intelligent as a mob.

Or . Collectively as a chain. You are only as intelligent as your weakess link. Especially in a govermemt system & economy that everyone support each other and depend on each other.

Edited by Freddy

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Or . Collectively as a chain. You are only as intelligent as your weakess link. Especially in a govermemt system & economy that everyone support each other and depend on each other.

I get the "chain" model that you're using, and it's interesting. I don't think it applies to all government services, though. There are plenty of departments that don't require much more than a button pusher.

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I get the "chain" model that you're using, and it's interesting. I don't think it applies to all government services, though. There are plenty of departments that don't require much more than a button pusher.

Our government isn't communist. Thankfull. As everyone is interdependent on each other to do their volunteering work. If someone falls out of line, everyone suffers, so punishment must be constantly enforced.

As for our government we don't do volunteering. We all give money to it like a charity. It isolates us from each other's incompetence. Somewhat.

Edited by Freddy

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