Is Pornography Destructive to Society?

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Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 01:40 pm
There is no doubting that pornography has today become commonplace in our society. I was wondering if this state of affairs is acceptable or might it lead to a dangerous situation causing a moral collapse and a subsequent decline in our society as a whole?

Personally, I believe that porno is highly toxic and is in the process of now bringing to an end our society. I think the advent of porno as commonplace is a kind of spiritual terrorism, a kind of spiritual nuclear bomb that is in the process of a slow explosion and will lead us to utter destruction.

I believe that our whole post-modern capitalist life-style, of a sort of "rebellion" through consuming - both goods and pornography - and the espousal of a mode of "liberation" through each act of consuming or pleasure through pronography feeds an intense sense of public skepticism which seems to keep growing and growing. In America the whole market-place seems to be predicated upon the most perverse irrationalisms. And this is precisely the thrill and addiction of the pornographic-laden market-place.

Does anyone have any thoughts about it? Is this the way the world ends - neither with a bang nor a whimper but with mass consumption of obscene porno? Will the unlimited quest for man's pleasure be the site of a great moral catastrophe? Or, perhaps, has that catstrophe already taken place and we are even now beyond any hope of saving?

Radical individualism, anything-goes-capitalism, and the non-existence of public moral standards may have already created a black-hole that we are doomed to fall in, ever further and ever blacker!

--------------

And here's a related news story from SOFIA, Bulgaria:

Feb. 8 (UPI) -- A city-run bus company is showing dirty movies on monitors at bus stops to help commuters in the Bulgarian capital while away the wait after midnight.

During the day, a bus timetable is on the monitors, the Serbian news agency FoNet reported Thursday.

An official at the transportation company in Sofia said the company wanted to entertain passengers as they wait for buses. Erotic movies are being shown only late at night when there is little chance children are on the streets, he said.

Some Sofia residents praised the new service while others said it brings shame on the city.

Some Bulgarians complained security in Sofia has been reduced as police officers prefer to watch pornographic films instead of chasing criminals, the report said.
-----------------------------------------------
City officials allowing publicly televised porno! I think this is indicative of the overall direction in which we are heading in our society, unfortuately. Any further thoughts or comments on this topic would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
--Pythagorean
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 03:53 pm
@Pythagorean,
No, I think that the continued fetishism of sex is a symptom of the restrictive puritanical norms that pervade most societies.

It is not pornography itself that is causing damage (note that I am a devout materialist, and to me spiritualism is a non-factor; I am very much more concerned about self-realization and preference satisfaction), but the conflict between pornography and the social norms that resist it. Since I see pornography (when made and brought to the agora by free and consenting individuals) as an actual good, I can only conclude that it is the social norms that cause problems.
 
Pythagorean
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 05:10 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr. Fight The Power,

My counter-point to you would be that today it is already indisputable that pornography has become the social norm. The cause for alarm being the fact that nowadays, there is no resistance and therefore no moral stopping-point (and that a lack of a moral stopping-point will lead to further dangers.) Certainly no effective resistance that I can see or that you could plausibly point to.

Perhaps you could point to one example of an attempt to resist pornography. You could try evaluating the top-rated television sitcoms, or check out the explicit ads in the largest newspapers.

Pornography has become a necessary therapy to salve the radical individualism that holds sway in today's world. Any attempt to restrict it will only increase its therapeutic value and street credibility as a welcome (monster of companionship). I say that pornography is today necessary, but that does not remove the result of social decay and moral void that its continuous increase creates.

We must admit to ourselves as much that moral anarchy is a total fact of post-modern life-style. Upon almost every surface of public life there is to be found the rainbow of sexual license and it's partner which is the free-market orgy of commercial consumerism.

I like to think that I am educated and up to date on the social norms of American and European(-influenced) societies. Nowhere do I see even a hint of "puritanism", if by puritanism we mean non-sexual related public culture. Such puritanism doesn't exist except as another excuse (and another protest march) for yet more pornographic therapy.

I guess I'm saying that pornography has won the day already and has become, like food, a necessity. But that this acceptance will lead to such things as widespread future political and economic injustices and social instability. We are already travelling down a road that we can't get off of. The deal is done.

--Pythagorean
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 06:46 pm
@Pythagorean,
Perhaps you are unaware of the FCC, MPAA film ratings, video game ratings, the inability to rent porn at any major video rental outlet, massive zoning ordinances prohibiting the filming, distribution, and watching of porn, or ordinances prohibiting the running of strip clubs?

I do not feel that you are far off in saying that pornography is "necessary", but I feel that the constant moralist pressure against sexuality, and the resulting shame, repression, and fetishism is the principle cause of it.

While there may be an unhealthy obsession with pornography and sexuality in general, I do not see it as a moral regression, but as a reaction to the even more unhealthy repression of sexual desires brought about by the moral prescriptions of government sponsored moralists.
 
boagie
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 07:45 pm
@Pythagorean,
"I guess I'm saying that pornography has won the day already and has become, like food, a necessity. But that this acceptance will lead to such things as widespread future political and economic injustices and social instability. We are already travelling down a road that we can't get off of. The deal is done."

Pythagorean,Mr Fight The Power,

A done deal perhaps,only I suspect because there is no one at the helm accept business.You both are very familar with nilhism, so you know that the only things of meaning or value are those things which have been given those attributes.Society at large seems to have decided that men and women and the sexual act are not to be given value,other than the fulfilment of immediate gratication.There is a intimation here to I think by association,that children are not to hold their traditional value--------that is debatable I know.

What does poronography do,or infer about the natural relationship between men and women.In some cultures which tend to be considered to harsh,this is a real concern.Lets face it the well being of society is not even a consideration.I think you are right pythagorean,a population that tolerates pornography to the level this society does,is a society without guiding principles,without a moral system.

It is interesting to though,if you could do a pole of the population of all age groups,I think you would find that most young people have a liberal attitude toward pornography.It is only after one has acrossed that age of about 30 to 35 that you are free RELATIVELY to live your life free from that biological directive,perhaps to there would be more decent among women than men. I do not believe however that there is a solution to the problem in the near future.
 
Pythagorean
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 08:18 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Quote:
Mr. Fight The Power wrote,

Perhaps you are unaware of the FCC, MPAA film ratings, video game ratings, the inability to rent porn at any major video rental outlet, massive zoning ordinances prohibiting the filming, distribution, and watching of porn, or ordinances prohibiting the running of strip clubs?


These are patently ineffective measures. How can you agree with me that porn has become [somewhat] necessary to our society, that is to say, a requirement for independent living, and then turn around and cite instances of its regulation? If it's already considered necessary then the regulations are meaningless. The measures that you site are the barest of rules which are merely pragmatic in nature and not prescriptive. By pragmatic I mean they don't prohibit porn but merely serve as guidelines to inform the people that they can't fornicate in certain public places (just yet!) and that they indeed can fornicate in certain other public places etc.

Quote:
I do not feel that you are far off in saying that pornography is "necessary", but I feel that the constant moralist pressure against sexuality, and the resulting shame, repression, and fetishism is the principle cause of it.


I don't see how repression and the like could act as a causal factor in the institutionalization of smut. Smut can only become institutionalized (grow) when regulations or repression is lacking. Shame might be a causal factor in a movement to abolish institutionalized pornography (a non-existent movement), but logically speaking, perversity must exist prior to the institutes of pornography. Pornography is prior to shame only in the famous garden of Eden during a time when ignorance was the rule. Unless you are claiming that ratings such as 'P.G.' make men horny?

It is illogical to imply that the less society acts against sexual perversities then the less sexual perversity there will be. For example, if we were to allow x-rated movies on the subways then there will be x-rated movies on the subways and not a movement towards the limitation of porn.

To use yet another example, the reason there is no pornography in store windows is because of pragmatic restrictions (and not government sponsored moralizers). If we were to drop the regulations which prohibit pornography in store windows then it's a safe bet that there will then be pornography in store windows. Regulations, whether they be merely pragmatic, or morally prescriptive do not create the human sex-drive. To suggest that they do is, with all due respect, bizarre.

--Pythagorean
 
Pythagorean
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 09:03 pm
@Pythagorean,
Quote:
boagie wrote:

Society at large seems to have decided that men and women and the sexual act are not to be given value,other than the fulfilment of immediate gratication.


Very good point, boagie, we seem to be reduced to almost the level of animals. I would just like to also point out that we don't choose the society that we are born into. So these things are already in play whether we like it or not. And there is nothing that we could do to stop it even if we wanted to. My main point is that we should at least try to recognize the situation we are in and not try to see things through some politically correct moral position. Those that think that we are not a pornographic society must be, with all due respect, living under a rock. I'm not trying to stop pornography because I can't do that even if I wanted to. What I would like to do is just to recognize reality for what it is, and then go on from there.

Quote:
boagie wrote,

a population that tolerates pornography to the level this society does,is a society without guiding principles,without a moral system.


Yes, boagie and doesn't this mean that we are back to recognizing our old post-modern condition where we are without religious faith, without classical philosophical rationalism and we are currently operating upon the revolutionary nihilist mode of individual and society? Isn't that true boagie?

Quote:
I do not believe however that there is a solution to the problem in the near future.


I am in total agreement with you. And I'm not here to look for solutions I just want to see things as they are and not try to (perhaps foolishly) make changes to things.

--pythagorean
 
boagie
 
Reply Sun 11 Mar, 2007 09:48 pm
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean,

Yes we are born into things seemingly beyond our control, but doesn't that sense of powerlessness feel terriable.Perhaps that is in part characteristic of the times too,our sense of powlessness.Negativity in the face of any problem allows its actuality, don't you think?It would not even be seen as a noble cause by most people.



"Yes, boagie and doesn't this mean that we are back to recognizing our old post-modern condition where we are without religious faith, without classical philosophical rationalism and we are currently operating upon the revolutionary nihilist mode of individual and society? Isn't that true boagie?"

Indeed, it is a time of great alienation, better still,a lack of orientation,for what is there to be orientented too,we are content without form?



"I am in total agreement with you. And I'm not here to look for solutions I just want to see things as they are and not try to (perhaps foolishly) make changes to things."

whether it is practical or not to wish things to be diffirent when they seem so unhealthy is anything but foolish.We seem to be in total agreement here,even as to the nature of the causes.



"All of life is mythologically compelled." Joseph Campbell
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 04:02 am
@boagie,
boagie wrote:
A done deal perhaps,only I suspect because there is no one at the helm accept business.You both are very familar with nilhism, so you know that the only things of meaning or value are those things which have been given those attributes.Society at large seems to have decided that men and women and the sexual act are not to be given value,other than the fulfilment of immediate gratication.There is a intimation here to I think by association,that children are not to hold their traditional value--------that is debatable I know.


I cannot disagree more with this, as society still places an enormous amount of "value" on sex, above and beyond immediate gratification. I will admit that there has been a dramatic liberalization of sex over the past 40 years (which is actually a far more healthy state of affairs than the "sex for pleasure is bad" shame that has been instilled through religion). However, any man who has been caught cheating, or any woman who has sex for pleasure and not to start a family can tell you just how many artificial values are placed on sex by society. The woman who enjoys sex and is promiscuous (even if safe in her sexual life) is called a "slut", prostitution is illegal and the prostitute is generally though of as being a lower class (even though corporate "yes-men" are a particularly insidious form of prostitute and get praised for it).

In the end, it is still a prevalent association of sex for love or sex for children, and anything else is frowned upon.

And if there is any association between sex and children, it is coming from the puritanical devision of society who wish for sex only to be a method of producing children, as those who realize the true nature of sex would never associate children with it.

Quote:
What does poronography do,or infer about the natural relationship between men and women.In some cultures which tend to be considered to harsh,this is a real concern.Lets face it the well being of society is not even a consideration.I think you are right pythagorean,a population that tolerates pornography to the level this society does,is a society without guiding principles,without a moral system.


Not true. The golden rule is a moral that would allow prostitution. The non-aggression axiom is a moral that would allow prostitution.
 
boagie
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 07:04 am
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr Fight The Power,

It is not surprizing that there is disagreement on this topic,it is fertile ground,excuse the pun.Indeed I would not like to see a return of a victorian attitude towards sex.One reason the church in the past was able to manipulate the population reguarding sex,is the blind nature of sexual fulfilment,it is the most powerful force in nature and it is dumb.It did not take a lot to convenice people of its low perhaps dirty nature,it is base,all the little animals do it in season but man,man is an animal of all seasons.I think society should be concerned with any behavior that is largely mindless.

It is said that the institution of the family provides the building blocks of the state.Sex with no restrictions,in its largely mindless endeavors underminds this.Young people are frighten,and rightly so,to commit even when the desire is strong to a marriage.I believe the divorce rate is over the fifty percent mark,these are societal concerns.What are the concerns of the horny? I think it just one more characteristic of a consumer society,the use and dispose society.Pornography is mindless,if you would like to state its beliefs and values your welcome to try

As far as prostitution is concerned, I think it has its place,indeed it will have its place,it existence is dependent upon that mindless drive of nature.That is the power of pornography,its appeal to mindlessness,an appeal to the greatist driving force of nature.Perhaps some people feel pornography the autonomus right of the individual-------- to quote Nietzsche,"Autonomy and morality are mutually exclusive,"but then we have this social contract------a real pain in the ass----lol! Back to my rubber doll.
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 04:13 pm
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean,

I am sorry, I did not realize that when you say "resist" you actually mean completely prohibit. Luckily most Western nations are not run by authoritarians who want nothing more than to control what you do or don't do in your own house.

Now, I can't help but notice that you have made a glaring and ridiculous assumption (that may be the reason why you didn't catch my argument). You say that "Smut can only become institutionalized (grow) when regulations or repression is lacking". This statement can only be made through complete ignorance of the history of government prohibition of desired peaceful behaviors. Certainly the regulation of alcohol during the prohibition did little to hinder the desire for alcohol. One cannot doubt the growth of drug use during our wonderful "War on Drugs."

The simple fact of the matter is that government regulation does not, nor ever will eliminate desire. It may go along way towards creating differing valuations of actions, in that the possible punishment may outweigh the fulfillment of the desire, but it will never, in any way, effect the desire.

The government is hardly the point, however, since it is symptomatic of the greater division between varying moralities within society. There is, on one side the shame of tradition, on the other is the nature of man and the freedom to pursue this nature.

In this, the garden of eden proves to be a rather apt analogy, as surely it can be shown that sexuality existed prior to the shame associated with it. In the course of human history, "shame", especially in relation to sexuality, is an extremely recent advent. Its advent certainly coincided with the rise of moralists who sought to extend their power over the individual and enforce in him unnatural behavior, much as God facilitated the shame (and the resulting dependency) of Adam and Eve.

This conflict between external morality and internal nature created in man a sort of self-aversion and resentment of his natural desires that fosters the creation of unnatural wants and desires (one cannot help but notice the trend among catholic priests). When men cannot reconcile their natural desires with their psychologically ingrained morality, the desires become repressed yet will eventually reestablish themselves in perverted forms.

So in the end, it is not "PG" that makes men horny, nature does that all on its own. However, it is the resentment instilled among humans of their own nature that causes humans to find what is X-rated (or even PG rated) sexually stimulating.
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 04:15 pm
@Pythagorean,
Pythagorean wrote:
Very good point, boagie, we seem to be reduced to almost the level of animals.


Ha! What else can we be?
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 04:23 pm
@Pythagorean,
Boagie,

You have predilections about man and sex that I simply do not agree with but do not think should be addressed in this thread.
 
boagie
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 08:09 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr. Fight the Power wrote:
Ha! What else can we be?



Mr Fight the power,

I don't believe anyone here is denying that sexuality is natural, but it probably is also true that it is natural for the individual to take what he wants from the weak.Do you wish this debate to be considered from man's purely animal nature.

It is said in many spiritual traditions,man does not become until he is born from the heart,in other words until compassion conditions his animal nature.I think this is indicative of a higher consciousness then that of animal consciousness.Pornography is pure animal nature unconditioned by a higher consciousness.The people involved are more inclined to be simply objects of this animal passion or lust.

I appreciate you do not express your subjective impression about my sexual orientation or attitude,as the topic is not of a personal nature.I afford you the same consideration.

I agree with you however, that surpession of the natural expression of sexuality will lead to unnatural behaviours.I think to, the natural expression of sexuality on an animal level will reduced ones psychology to an animal level----a healthy animal mind you,just less than a human expression.
 
Pythagorean
 
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2007 09:35 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Quote:
Mr. Fight the Power,

I can't help but notice that you have made a glaring and ridiculous assumption (that may be the reason why you didn't catch my argument). You say that "Smut can only become institutionalized (grow) when regulations or repression is lacking". This statement can only be made through complete ignorance of the history of government prohibition of desired peaceful behaviors. Certainly the regulation of alcohol during the prohibition did little to hinder the desire for alcohol. One cannot doubt the growth of drug use during our wonderful "War on Drugs."


When I said that repression and regulations must be absent before a certain activity can become institutionalized by society I think that the statment speaks for itself. Because to "institutionalize" something is to approve of it; and to regulate against and repress something is to "de-institutionalize" it or to outlaw it. To "institute" something into being requires the approval of the authorities. Whereas to "de-institute" is to outlaw or to relegate such activities to the margins of society. My argument is that pornography has been "institutionalized" therefore it has been, according to me, widely approved and authorized.

Regarding the times of 'prohibition' against alcohol. The cause of that prohibition was the desire to become unnaturally 'intoxicated' by a foreign substance, namely booze. Then there arose across the land a sense that alcohol consumption was an immoral activity and so the people decided to outlaw its consumption. On this I feel certain in saying that prohibition limited the amount of alcoholic intake on a nation-wide basis.

I could also make the plausible argument that if there was no "war on drugs" (which started in the 60's under Nixon and was re-asserted under Ronald Reagan in the 80's) then drug use would be much higher. There are currently millions of persons within the prison system right now who would be free to use drugs in public if drugs were made legal. The war on drugs puts drug users into prison. Drug use could become institutionalized but first you must let the drug users out of prison. But as long as drug users are in prison I would argue that drug use is pushed to the margin and doesn't have the comparable numbers of users as does, for example, the alcoholic beverage industry.

For example, if drug use were legalized do you think that the numbers of people using drugs would rise or fall? If drug use were legalized (institutionalized) I think the number of users would rise not fall.

[CENTER]* * *[/CENTER]

Your original argument was that shame and moralizing against pornograpy [sexual fetish] actually causes the sexual fetish or the obscene prevalence of pornography.

As I said, I don't believe that shame and the like are the cause of the current widespread availability and consumption of pornography. There are two factors to be considered when confronting the wide spread consumption of porno. One is the human desire to live without any restraints no matter what the costs. The second factor is the historical and political retreat from the classical virtues, whether those virtues arise out of a reasonable understanding of human nature, or whether those virtues are imposed by the religious sensibilities of the people.

As far as the child molestation by Catholic priests is concerned I would say that if there were no restrictions or shame in society (which is the direction we are now heading) then the Catholic priests, and probably many other men, would simply start having sex with little boys in the public streets. Again the same rule applies here in this case: if sex between men and boys were legalized, do you think there would be less molestation or more? I think there would be more.

Quote:
The government is hardly the point, however, since it is symptomatic of the greater division between varying moralities within society. There is, on one side the shame of tradition, on the other is the nature of man and the freedom to pursue this nature.


The nature of man is problematic. Man is usually blinded by his passions and his prejudices. If a society lets men do whatever they want then that society wouldn't be worth much and wouldn't last long. The freedom of one man ends with the next man. It is the false freedom of the passions that make men act unnaturally (just look at the streets!). Passion makes a slave out of man. What distinguishes men from animals is our capacity to reason. Man's freedom is always based in reason. As boagie has already quoted "autonomy and morality are mutually exclusive". This means that autonomy is a paradox; man's nature is vexed. There is no acting naturally without reasons.

The laws of society are (were) the attempt to remedy man's unnatural, primal desires for the sake of it's future security and wellbeing.

--Pythagorean
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Tue 13 Mar, 2007 04:48 pm
@boagie,
boagie wrote:
I don't believe anyone here is denying that sexuality is natural, but it probably is also true that it is natural for the individual to take what he wants from the weak.Do you wish this debate to be considered from man's purely animal nature.

It is said in many spiritual traditions,man does not become until he is born from the heart,in other words until compassion conditions his animal nature.I think this is indicative of a higher consciousness then that of animal consciousness.Pornography is pure animal nature unconditioned by a higher consciousness.The people involved are more inclined to be simply objects of this animal passion or lust.

I appreciate you do not express your subjective impression about my sexual orientation or attitude,as the topic is not of a personal nature.I afford you the same consideration.

I agree with you however, that surpession of the natural expression of sexuality will lead to unnatural behaviours.I think to, the natural expression of sexuality on an animal level will reduced ones psychology to an animal level----a healthy animal mind you,just less than a human expression.


There is strong evidence that very strong altruism is a natural evolutionary development in humans, however, I will not say that it is counter to human nature to take from the weak to promote their wellbeing.

(This could branch off in to a political discussion, politics being what brought me to philosophical thought, but that is for another thread)

However, my point is that no expression of human behavior can be something other than animal behavior. Certainly about 40,000 years ago something occurred that caused humans to develop much more complex social structures, but to say that it is not a natural animalistic advance would be to lend humans a much greater standing within our universe than they merit.

You are free to correct me if I am wrong, but I believe I understand where you are coming from on this, in that you feel the sex drive is one of the basic (read: lower) desires of men. You think that it is unreasoned want and is animalistic because of this. However, I would posit that no emotion or desire is derived from reason, rather they are tempered by reason(although, neuroscience is actually discovering evidence that reason has no other role than ordering and decifering our emotions, drives, and maybe even actions ex post facto). Even the great conditioner of human behavior, compassion, is quite evident in lower species, and could easily be considered one of humanity's basic or lower drives.

If I may, I would like to offer a resolution for you, but first: As I said, I interpret your derision towards our sexual nature in that you percieve it as being unreasonable desire, but I don't think you can say that any desire or emotion or drive is reasonable. In this it is the not the desire but the resulting action that can be tempered by reason. When we separate desires from our reason, I lean to the conclusion that you do not oppose sexuality itself, rather any unreasonable expression thereof.

Am I correct so far?
 
boagie
 
Reply Tue 13 Mar, 2007 07:16 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr Fight the power,


History does not support such altruistic behaviour in general,though there are no doubt instances of such altruism toward the weak.

"However, my point is that no expression of human behavior can be something other than animal behavior. Certainly about 40,000 years ago something occurred that caused humans to develop much more complex social structures, but to say that it is not a natural animalistic advance would be to lend humans a much greater standing within our universe than they merit."

So,you would take your tutorial from the observation of our animal cousins------yes? Even in the animal world there are characteristics of species both physical and behavioural.We are talking about the human animal, with its characteristics of behaviour.We can, and often do behave in a common manner characteristic to the larger defination of animal.Reason and compassion however are in whatever degree,are part of the defination of humanity---I do however agree, it is found elsewhere in the animal world.

"You are free to correct me if I am wrong, but I believe I understand where you are coming from on this, in that you feel the sex drive is one of the basic (read: lower) desires of men. You think that it is unreasoned want and is animalistic because of this." However, I would posit that no emotion or desire is derived from reason, rather they are tempered by reason(although, neuroscience is actually discovering evidence that reason has no other role than ordering and decifering our emotions, drives, and maybe even actions ex post facto). Even the great conditioner of human behavior, compassion, is quite evident in lower species, and could easily be considered one of humanity's basic or lower drives."

Well,your not exactly wrong,your in the right neighbourhood you might say.Are you familar with Schopenhaur's,The World As Will And Representation? The will according to Schopenhaur is blind,senseless,it is as a hunger which drives you.This will is ultimately the essence of all things and in all things it is as a blind directive.It certainly is blind in the animal world where instincts in their seasons rule.With reason we can control our own reprodution,but that is like a trick played at nature expense.

As Darwin pointed out early in the origin of species,nature cares not for the individual but for species.Sexuality largely over rules the individuals will, it will have its way,natural or unnaturally, it is not an intellectual decision.These are some of the reasons it is not to difficult to consider it base,base in the sense that it is all powerful in its elemental nature,only with man is it conditioned with reason---on rare occasions.

I am aware of what is coming out of neurology,there will be some mind blowing stuff just down the road.You could be right about compassion being elemental, but it would seem a conflict of common sense but then again,so what.Perhaps it is something in degree,developed in common with all social animals.

"If I may, I would like to offer a resolution for you, but first: As I said, I interpret your derision towards our sexual nature in that you percieve it as being unreasonable desire, but I don't think you can say that any desire or emotion or drive is reasonable. In this it is the not the desire but the resulting action that can be tempered by reason. When we separate desires from our reason, I lean to the conclusion that you do not oppose sexuality itself, rather any unreasonable expression thereof.

Am I correct so far?[/quote]

Yes,you are correct for the most part,we do have a somewhat diffirent appreciation of the nature of the will and the sexual drive.As I stated earlier it is blind to anything accept it own fulfilment.If you are a strong healthy individual and young,its almost like the hormones are running the show.We know what drummer the young are marching too,its the same tune played through the eons.Actually try and imagine a world without the sex game,wouldn't it be a bore.One thing in closeing,you seem concerned over elemental or base drives,there are many of them, including your breathing and heartbeat.These however play a supportive essential background role, the sexual drive is right out front,it has its investment in today,and when your horny,its doing the driving.Your right though,an unreasonable expression of public sexuality I do find offensive.

I think we are frustrating our friend Pythagorean, in his desire to consider mans ailenation being due to post modernism leading to a nihilistic existence.Where would you Mr Fight the power,like to see this go,through what method would you like to address the topic,or are we on track in your opinion?
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Wed 14 Mar, 2007 06:56 pm
@boagie,
boagie wrote:
History does not support such altruistic behaviour in general,though there are no doubt instances of such altruism toward the weak.

So,you would take your tutorial from the observation of our animal cousins------yes? Even in the animal world there are characteristics of species both physical and behavioural.We are talking about the human animal, with its characteristics of behaviour.We can, and often do behave in a common manner characteristic to the larger defination of animal.Reason and compassion however are in whatever degree,are part of the defination of humanity---I do however agree, it is found elsewhere in the animal world.


Firstly, the history of civilization has not been a history of natural human behavior.

Secondly, I only wish to posit that reason and compassion are not human traits, rather they are animal traits that are emphasized and expanded upon in homo sapiens.

I will not disagree, however, that there are certain characteristics that separate human behavior from animal behavior, however, I do believe that it is exactly as you see it. In the end, I believe it is inconsequential to the argument.

Quote:
Well,your not exactly wrong,your in the right neighbourhood you might say.Are you familar with Schopenhaur's,The World As Will And Representation? The will according to Schopenhaur is blind,senseless,it is as a hunger which drives you.This will is ultimately the essence of all things and in all things it is as a blind directive.It certainly is blind in the animal world where instincts in their seasons rule.With reason we can control our own reprodution,but that is like a trick played at nature expense.

As Darwin pointed out early in the origin of species,nature cares not for the individual but for species.Sexuality largely over rules the individuals will, it will have its way,natural or unnaturally, it is not an intellectual decision.These are some of the reasons it is not to difficult to consider it base,base in the sense that it is all powerful in its elemental nature,only with man is it conditioned with reason---on rare occasions.


I have never been all that interested in the will, nor have I studied it in detail. However, if I understand your relaying of Shopenhauer, I would not disagree, if there is a will, it is a blind action. You seem to counter Shopenhauer, though, in saying that reason tempers sexuality. If I am to accept that the will is blind and "is like a trick played at nature expense", then reason is a something external to the will (which I would counter in saying that both reason is both a natural, animalistic quality only amplified and is contained within the will) but then you turn around and argue that sexuality can "over rules" the will, implying that sexuality is external to the will.

I actually think this is inconsequential as well, but it is worth addressing, at least to find a proper understanding between us.

Quote:
I am aware of what is coming out of neurology,there will be some mind blowing stuff just down the road.You could be right about compassion being elemental, but it would seem a conflict of common sense but then again,so what.Perhaps it is something in degree,developed in common with all social animals.


The evolution of behavior is an extremely interesting topic.

Quote:
Yes,you are correct for the most part,we do have a somewhat diffirent appreciation of the nature of the will and the sexual drive.As I stated earlier it is blind to anything accept it own fulfilment.If you are a strong healthy individual and young,its almost like the hormones are running the show.We know what drummer the young are marching too,its the same tune played through the eons.Actually try and imagine a world without the sex game,wouldn't it be a bore.One thing in closeing,you seem concerned over elemental or base drives,there are many of them, including your breathing and heartbeat.These however play a supportive essential background role, the sexual drive is right out front,it has its investment in today,and when your horny,its doing the driving.Your right though,an unreasonable expression of public sexuality I do find offensive.


So, if you would consider the blind, unreasonable fulfillment of the sexual drive to be the negative aspect, what would you consider to be consititute blind, unreasoning fulfillment?

Quote:
I think we are frustrating our friend Pythagorean, in his desire to consider mans ailenation being due to post modernism leading to a nihilistic existence.Where would you Mr Fight the power,like to see this go,through what method would you like to address the topic,or are we on track in your opinion?


I take the absolute reverse position of Pythagorean, in that I feel it is alienation that leads men away from nihilism. It is natural for man to yearn for self(internal)-fulfillment.
 
boagie
 
Reply Wed 14 Mar, 2007 08:33 pm
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr Fight the power,

"I take the absolute reverse position of Pythagorean, in that I feel it is alienation that leads men away from nihilism. It is natural for man to yearn for self(internal)-fulfillment."quote

I wonder with this stance,do you consider the social contract between the individual and society as something unhealthy to self-fulfilment.In other words that the laws of the society are against the individuals animal nature and thus he should not be subject to it?If I am reading you wrong,what is the nature of this alienation leading away from nihilism,if it is not the restrictions of the social contract.

My apology for the sloppy job I did in outlineing the nature of the will.You did bring out a point which I had not thought of before,the dual nature,or the split nature of the human psyche.This was something Nietzsche was well aware of,this is what makes him both the sick animal and thus the human animal.So,in other words yes, it is not unusual for natures blind drive[will] to be at odds with mans psychological intent.The body can often want what the mind does not,as the mind can want what the body does not.

I do not think myself nor I presume Pythagorean,thinks it healthly to supress entirely the natural instincts of man,that could only lead to rather profound psychological problems.I do not believe either it is our intent here to vanquish pornography.I think it is more an attempt to figure out what is the nature of those things which produce such ailenation.There have been a number of topics mentioned,post modernism,nihilism,and the fact that with the death of the myth of Christianity we have inherited the wind.It is a complex and ambitous dialogue attempt.It seems to me we have to beware of getting lost in a lot of smaller complexities in order to make contact [not necessarly agreement] for a meaningful dialogue.Perhaps we could focus first on ailenation for I am not sure, there is agreement even on this.
 
Pythagorean
 
Reply Thu 15 Mar, 2007 12:14 am
@boagie,
Quote:
Boagie wrote, Perhaps we could focus first on ailenation


My opinion is that the ultimate causes of our (post-) modern alienation are to be found outside of the immediate concerns of the individual.

What I mean is that the causes of modern alienation arise from larger patterns handed down to the individual from the greater social fabric and the greater cultural system in which we find ourselves. And that the causes of our alienation are historical in nature.

It is the historical style of today, it is the prevailing habit of our times, for people to be allowed and to have the 'right' to pursue their own pleasures no matter how irrational, dark, or disturbing the pursuit of those inner-satisfactions may be. This is the crises of our time.

It is a crises because the relentless persuit of these dark personal pleasures is not conducive to 'civic engagement' and lead, generally, to forms of 'social dis-connectivity' and iniquity. This post-modern ideology of personal satisfaction is 'revolutionary' behaviour that is seen as forms of societal 'rebellion'.

I'm saying that the ideology of personal satisfaction is leading towards a general void of the social contract even as it reinterprets the social contract in its own rebellious image. So that the treatment and the meaning of the laws are changing in order to accomodate the growing decadence.

As this post-modern, revolutionary, ideology dictates to us new forms of irrational behaviour, the social contract then is seen and is blamed as an alienating system. This is a vicious circle that leads to personal alienation and feelings of powerlessness.

As we continue to blame the system for the ill effects of our own ideological nihilism the system will respond by increasing the limits on bad behaviour, by allowing more perversity into society. The only logical stopping point of this ideological nihilism must be the total self-destruction of the social contract. (That is, 'universal' bad behaviour, - i.e. obscene decadence at the highest levels of business and government.)

For example, people today believe that their personal pleasures can be maximized only by freedom from authority, and they resent any distinction among forms of behavior that suggests superiority (or meaning) in any one over another. So that authority is continuously blamed for lack of orgasmic pleasure and authority is also blamed for lack of purpose or meaning in society. Even though it is our revolutionary "orgasms" that are causing the lack of purpose and meaning. Until, finally the whole social contract falls into an out of control spiral of self-destructive revolutionary nihilism.

The parrallel is the same with commercial consumption of consumer goods. The rate of commercial consumption in the United States today is unsustainable. That is to say that we have inherited a brand of consumer-capitalism that is revolutionary, nihilistic, and out of control. Today, commercial capitalism conforms to the ideology of revolutionary nihilism. So that the most dark and irrational impulses are colourfully packaged and mass-marketed.



--Pythagorean
 
 

 
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