Would you rather never have been born?

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manored
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 01:57 pm
@Shostakovich phil,
Shostakovich;99351 wrote:

The poor die off to the tune of 30,000 children each day, but the population keeps rising because the ethic of those who have them by the truck load seems to be, some of these sickly children might survive to take care of us, and some might live long enough to get sponsored by some rich person who'll send us money. So it can be argued that sponsorship results in third world countries spawning more children, and hence, more poverty, more starvation, and a need for even more sponsorship. Is this why there's more sponsorship adds on television now than in the past? There certainly are more of these adds.
I agree. Whenever you give someone fish, you make it less likely that they will try to get fish by thenselves, and also less likely that they will know how to do so then they need.

Shostakovich;99351 wrote:

This is also why I refuse to sponsor a child. Am I being unethical? I don't think so. As for those who do sponsor third world children, I won't applaud them. In fact, I'd argue that their supposed altruistic behaviour is not ethical if it results in more poverty in the end. I'd even call their actions irresponsible and shortsighted. This is the same reason I'm against any nation sending any other nation any kind of foreign aid. We've got homeless people on the streets in our own town. And the analogy I think would be something like this:

If my neighbour living next door has a child who's hungry. And I have a child who is hungry, who's child should I feed? Our foreign policy as it stands is saying: Ignore your own child and feed your neighbour's child. It's your moral imperative!

This is bullshit, pure and simple. As long as there is one homeless person on the streets of Vancouver's eastside (home to Canada's most downtrodden) then not even one cent of taxpayers money should be going to third world nations.
I agree, but I would go further and say that even if your country is an utopia it shouldnt share its resources with another country, wich will just go to waste. It should only try to help and stabilize that society once it has been assimilated and under political control.

As for foreign aid, I think there it should be provided in case of emergencies (such as a volcano going boom) but it should be carefully planned as to not aid the reckless (those who did not protect thenselves from a fairly detectable treat)

Shostakovich;99351 wrote:

The reason I refuse to have children (I've convinced my wife to my position and she's actually happy for it) is because of one reason alone: We can't afford it.

I refuse to bring a child into the world if I cannot provide for the child and make life as easy as possible for them, financially speaking. Otherwise, I think I would make a fantastic father, mainly because I have a compassionate and understanding wife with high moral fibre. I think the world would be far better off if everyone thought my way, but of course this is arrogant, isn't it?
I agree with that also, if you dont think you have the conditions to have children, its better not to. You can be a philosopher, our world needs more of then =)

Declaring you have a superior idea is not necessarly arrogant. If it is, or not, depends of whenever this idea is indeed superior or not. Also, the only true problem to arrogance is that you can less than you perceive, the rest is just the disgust people arrogantly (irony) fell then someone claims to be better than then =)

Shostakovich;99351 wrote:

But the economic system we're governed by demands that most of the population be of a lower education and working class, not lawyers/doctors/rocket scientists etc., but just menial lower class labourers, to make the system work. If there were no peons where would the kings and queens be? So shy would I want to contribute to such a sickening system of deliberately induced impoverishment and slavery?
We will always need people who are more important and thus receive more from the society, but I suppose we could carefully balance it so both sides fell confortable with their shares

Shostakovich;99351 wrote:

One ending note: "If all the humans on earth suddenly dropped dead all the animals would offer up one great collective sigh of relief."
Not all animals are windered by us, some, such as rats, are helped, and some others, such as dogs, have already adapted to living with us.

They would also lose their current protection against asteroids (that still needs some tunning though), and their spreading across the universe would be severly delayed (until another intelligent species evolved), if not cripled altogheder. Where I am assuming that humans, who are afraid of the unknow, will take animals from earth with then when and if they colonize the universe =)

gojo1978;99400 wrote:

Why oh why would anyone in their right mind think being born and trapped in work for 60 years was a worthwhile endeavour? Keep it! I'm sure when I was just a random collection of atoms floating around the cosmos unconsciously, I was perfectly okay. That is how my children shall remain.

Why subject them to this?
Indeed, but now we are born, and there is nothing we can do about it. (If you suicide you will just go elsewhere, its no good).

But, somehow, it doesnt make sense to me to not have children as to not subject then to suffering. With an infinite of minds being created into an infinity of worlds, one or ten or ten billion more cant make any difference. Like, if you dont do that, and infinity of other people will do it for you, making the whole thing pointless. Whats the point of not throwing garbage in a river if there is a constant, massive divine flow of garbage into this same river?

Suming it up, I think we shouldnt try to guess whenever the child will be glad for living when deciding if we will have it =)

manfred;99437 wrote:
So your just a collection of some random atoms trapped together working in perfect harmony to achieve absolutly nothing?Is that really any different than floating around trying to achieve nothing?.....Rubbish!
What does a wonderful life have to do with anything,life sucks,but just because you dont appreciate this contradictory state of being doesn't mean your children wont....Rubbish!
You want to know what i think gogo,i think your brain needs a hug.
I cant logically conceive an universe where there is something to be achieved.

My argument against using future suffering as an argument to not have children also goes against your argument of using future happines as an argument to have children. Aka: Both things dont make sense =)

His brain is in the right place and diameter, dont you be hugging it.
 
gojo1978
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 05:16 pm
@manored,
manored;99500 wrote:
Somehow, it doesnt make sense to me to not have children as to not subject then to suffering. With an infinite of minds being created into an infinity of worlds, one or ten or ten billion more cant make any difference. Like, if you dont do that, and infinity of other people will do it for you, making the whole thing pointless. Whats the point of not throwing garbage in a river if there is a constant, massive divine flow of garbage into this same river?


Well, sadly, I cannot stop other people from procreating, but it absolutely DOES make a difference if I don't do it. I will not bear the guilt of having subjected anyone to this, first of all. That is an immediate and significant difference. Besides, that is the fallacy of common practice; you are proposing that just because everyone else is popping out children, I should mindlessly do likewise. That ain't how I roll.

Anyway, the river thing is a weak analogy. Garbage is neither conscious or sentient, so, hypothetically, even if I was to throw garbage into the river (which I would not, incidentally), it would have zero effect on the garbage. Calling someone into existence, on the other hand, will have a fairly profound effect on them!

It is exactly the thought process (for want of a better term) which you proposed which I believe to be a major problem in the world. "Oh, it's just what you do, isn't it? Well, why don't we bust out a few of our own?" People really should think a lot more deeply about the ramifications of having children before they do it. Objectively, life for most people isn't particularly great, so why impose it on someone who didn't ask for it?

You can't deny a non-existant person pleasure, but you CAN spare them of pain. Do it.
 
manfred
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 05:26 pm
@gojo1978,
gojo1978;99446 wrote:
I think yours needs 50 cc's of Thorazine.


50 cc's,or units?
Are you telling me that im better off dead?
...Rubbish!
 
gojo1978
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 05:38 pm
@manfred,
manfred;99523 wrote:
50 cc's,or units?
Are you telling me that im better off dead?
...Rubbish!



Hahahahaha!

You've really taken this "Rubbish!" thing and run with it, haven't you?

Hit a nerve or something?
 
manfred
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 05:55 pm
@gojo1978,
Well you got to understand something,im from Texas and we aint use to words with more than one syllable.Your right though, i wont bother you again gojo.Be good friend.
 
gojo1978
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 05:56 pm
@manfred,
manfred;99532 wrote:
Well you got to understand something,im from Texas and we aint use to words with more than one syllable.Your right though, i wont bother you again gojo.Be good friend.


Where in Texas? I have family in Austin.
 
Shostakovich phil
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 07:47 pm
@manfred,
manfred;99437 wrote:
What does a wonderful life have to do with anything,life sucks,but just because you dont appreciate this contradictory state of being doesn't mean your children wont ...
Quote:


The odds are stacked against them! Unless you happen to be Bill Gates, or someone like him. But even then, when the economic system collapses, and farmers quit making crops, and the stores run out of food, and the gasoline stations run out of gas ... what then? I suppose we'll all take our guns out and go shopping for human meat to eat. The future that I see coming from the civilization we humans have built is something monstrous. If I had my head in a guillotine and the blade was rushing down I'd think the prospects would be much better, albeit the end would come much sooner.
 
manfred
 
Reply Fri 23 Oct, 2009 08:13 pm
@Shostakovich phil,
Shostakovich;99552 wrote:
manfred;99437 wrote:
What does a wonderful life have to do with anything,life sucks,but just because you dont appreciate this contradictory state of being doesn't mean your children wont ...
Quote:


The odds are stacked against them! Unless you happen to be Bill Gates, or someone like him. But even then, when the economic system collapses, and farmers quit making crops, and the stores run out of food, and the gasoline stations run out of gas ... what then? I suppose we'll all take our guns out and go shopping for human meat to eat. The future that I see coming from the civilization we humans have built is something monstrous. If I had my head in a guillotine and the blade was rushing down I'd think the prospects would be much better, albeit the end would come much sooner.


Who's to say they will not become the next Billy boy,or better yet,what if your child came up with a concept so original it literally changed the perspective of reality itself?I myself would welcome a world where we still used flint,but that's never going to happen,so mine as well keep populating this earth with morons,one of em is bound to get it right sooner or later.And as far as this economic/agriculture collapse you speak of is concerned,it's called natural selection,really stupid people will eventually kill themselves off and what we will be left with is a smaller,more manageable system of checks and balances.What if your children's children were to become the leaders of this new(old/ballance)world,only you decided to chop your own head off before it had a chance to talk you out of it? Not to get off subject,but i found 6$ today,aint that neat?:letme-at-em:
 
validity
 
Reply Sat 24 Oct, 2009 12:01 am
@gojo1978,
gojo1978;95907 wrote:
Being alive now, conscious and capable of thought, all things considered, would you rather never have been born?

Discuss...


Either state precludes the other. There is no sensible way for me to answer the question.

You should be asking the first person to be born in the year 2030 to start making notes now...
 
gojo1978
 
Reply Sat 24 Oct, 2009 04:49 am
@validity,
validity;99564 wrote:
Either state precludes the other. There is no sensible way for me to answer the question.


Yes there is. I don't get people like you who, instead of answering the question, just try to pick holes in it. I've already ignored a couple in this thread. It is an easy question to answer.

Perhaps you should be on a Politics forum?
 
Shostakovich phil
 
Reply Sat 24 Oct, 2009 11:19 am
@manfred,
manfred;99554 wrote:
[ Not to get off subject,but i found 6$ today,aint that neat?:letme-at-em:


The prospects aren't so dim after all.
 
manored
 
Reply Sat 24 Oct, 2009 07:06 pm
@gojo1978,
gojo1978;99522 wrote:
Well, sadly, I cannot stop other people from procreating, but it absolutely DOES make a difference if I don't do it. I will not bear the guilt of having subjected anyone to this, first of all. That is an immediate and significant difference. Besides, that is the fallacy of common practice; you are proposing that just because everyone else is popping out children, I should mindlessly do likewise. That ain't how I roll.

I didnt propose that at all, what I proposed is that the argument for not having children "I wont have children to not create people who will suffer" doesnt make sense to me. Thats not the only argument in favor of not having children, or is it?

Second, How do you consider the opinion of someone who has none? You cant ask a person if they would like to be born, you cant ask a person if they would have chosen to be born if they had the choice at the moment. Everone (who has though enough about it) would like to not have been born, but existing is unavoidable. As we exist, it seens fair to demand other things to exist as well. There is no way we can know if they wouldnt end up existing anyway, even winhout our action. We dont know how minds come to be, we only know ever human is born with one.

gojo1978;99522 wrote:

Anyway, the river thing is a weak analogy. Garbage is neither conscious or sentient, so, hypothetically, even if I was to throw garbage into the river (which I would not, incidentally), it would have zero effect on the garbage. Calling someone into existence, on the other hand, will have a fairly profound effect on them!
Knowing zero about what would happen to then otherwise, can we say this effect is negative? I think not.

But, yes, its a weak analogy =)


gojo1978;99522 wrote:

It is exactly the thought process (for want of a better term) which you proposed which I believe to be a major problem in the world. "Oh, it's just what you do, isn't it? Well, why don't we bust out a few of our own?" People really should think a lot more deeply about the ramifications of having children before they do it.
They are not the same. There is a difference between stealing of a finite food pile and an infinite one.

But, yes, people should think more before having children. Or resist sex drive better =)

gojo1978;99522 wrote:

Objectively, life for most people isn't particularly great, so why impose it on someone who didn't ask for it?
why not?

gojo1978;99522 wrote:

You can't deny a non-existant person pleasure, but you CAN spare them of pain. Do it.
You cant do anything towards the non-existant. Nor give then pleasure, nor spare then of pain.

Shostakovich;99552 wrote:
manfred;99437 wrote:
What does a wonderful life have to do with anything,life sucks,but just because you dont appreciate this contradictory state of being doesn't mean your children wont ...
Quote:


The odds are stacked against them! Unless you happen to be Bill Gates, or someone like him. But even then, when the economic system collapses, and farmers quit making crops, and the stores run out of food, and the gasoline stations run out of gas ... what then? I suppose we'll all take our guns out and go shopping for human meat to eat. The future that I see coming from the civilization we humans have built is something monstrous. If I had my head in a guillotine and the blade was rushing down I'd think the prospects would be much better, albeit the end would come much sooner.
It wont necessarly be monstruous for then, Although unexistance is always better than existance. Well, I have already posted above my reasons for believing that not bringing people into existence so they dont suffer doesnt makes sense.

Besides, going through armaggedon is fun. Well, maybe not, but whatever waits us behind death is not necessarly better.
 
Shostakovich phil
 
Reply Sat 24 Oct, 2009 09:11 pm
@manored,
manored;99682 wrote:

Besides, going through armaggedon is fun. Well, maybe not, but whatever waits us behind death is not necessarly better.


The one major factor for deciding to have children I think is the optimism people have concerning the prospects for their children. The future is there for them to make something of it, and some may have a great positive influence on the world, and may make it a better place for themselves and others. My wife is by the way, Catholic. Thankfully, she is not a staunch orthodox Catholic, so my having talked some sense into her about the practicalities of having and not having children wasn't as difficult as it might have been.

The other thing is: For those who believe in God, there's always that mystery of what fate they will come face to face with if they do arise in an afterlife. More misery ... worse than anything they've experiened in this life? That would suck big time. Imagine having lived a life now full of depravation, misery, torment both physical and mentally, and maybe being murdered by some bloodthirsty savage in a back lane for the two bucks you had in your pocket.

Next scene: God is looking at you with hellfire burning in his eyes.

What would I do in this circumstance.

I'd just shrug my shoulders, and say something stupid, like: "What ... more of the same?"
 
manored
 
Reply Sun 25 Oct, 2009 04:11 pm
@Shostakovich phil,
Shostakovich;99694 wrote:

The other thing is: For those who believe in God, there's always that mystery of what fate they will come face to face with if they do arise in an afterlife. More misery ... worse than anything they've experiened in this life? That would suck big time. Imagine having lived a life now full of depravation, misery, torment both physical and mentally, and maybe being murdered by some bloodthirsty savage in a back lane for the two bucks you had in your pocket.
I think the chances of it being better or worse are equal.
 
Shostakovich phil
 
Reply Sun 25 Oct, 2009 04:28 pm
@manored,
manored;99766 wrote:
I think the chances of it being better or worse are equal.


I'm being at my most cynical in this thread.

I'm hoping/thinking it actually can't be worse, it must be better, because there can't be something worse than now.
 
validity
 
Reply Sun 25 Oct, 2009 08:02 pm
@gojo1978,
gojo1978;99579 wrote:
validity;99564 wrote:
Either state precludes the other. There is no sensible way for me to answer the question.

You should be asking the first person to be born in the year 2030 to start making notes now...
Yes there is. I don't get people like you who, instead of answering the question, just try to pick holes in it. I've already ignored a couple in this thread. It is an easy question to answer.

Perhaps you should be on a Politics forum?
It may be an easy question to answer but I do not see that there is value on the answer as the answer is drawn from a lack of knowledge i.e I have never been "not born" in order to claim that this is a state I would prefer over having been born. Being a philosophy forum, I thought it an appropriate response.

PS People like me would rather remind you of

Forum Etiquette and Community Attitude "Dont Attack - We welcome you to criticize the idea or message however we ask that you refrain from criticizing or attacking the individual." http://www.philosophyforum.com/faq.php?faq=philosophyforum#faq_philosophy_forum_goal

than getting into politics.
 
Shostakovich phil
 
Reply Sun 25 Oct, 2009 09:05 pm
@validity,
validity;99773 wrote:
It may be an easy question to answer but I do not see that there is value on the answer as the answer is drawn from a lack of knowledge i.e I have never been "not born" in order to claim that this is a state I would prefer over having been born. Being a philosophy forum, I thought it an appropriate response.


It is based entirely on the knowledge/experience we have in this life; and that experience, if it is primarly negative, leads some to think that it would have been better to have no experience whatsoever (had they not been born all the negative experiences would not have been experienced). This is the way I feel about it all.

The only thing I find positive in existence are: Creativity in the arts, in music especially (Beethoven ... Shostakovich -my favourite), in the visual arts (Rembrandt, Brughels, even Warhol and Pollock and Lichtenstein for instance), architecture (Michalangelo, etc.), literature etc., etc., but even given the sum total of these things, what's the point?

On his death bed Leonardo DaVinci is said to have mouthed something to the effect that all that he had accomplished amounted to a waste of time. Nothing he had done had made his life meaningful.

I watched a sort of minimalist film called 'According to Schmidt' with Jack Nicholson playing Schmidt ... in the end, the only thing that gave his life any meaning whatsoever, was a letter he received from the child he sponsored overseas. He has tears running down his eyes at the end of the film.

Sentimental, right?

Not for me.

I'm saying to myself: "Schmidt, you stupid rat, this kid's going to get their head blown off in some genocide over there, and if not, all you're doing is contributing to the world's overpopulation. And why not send the money to some homeless bum in Chicago? He's more your neighbour. But no, you had to send your money to some kid somewhere outside your own country so you could feel good about yourself."

Quite cynical on my part. But I hate sentimentality, even in movies. It's a cheap gimmick to make the masses feel good about life, when in fact, the masses, for the most part, know all too well how much it really sucks.
 
Darkpoet
 
Reply Sun 25 Oct, 2009 10:59 pm
@gojo1978,
Basing on my current events happening to my life right now, I would say I would choose to never have been born. But, then I would have never answered this question, nor experiencing the events that have occurred to make me choose not being born at all.

this is VERY puzzling....
 
gojo1978
 
Reply Mon 26 Oct, 2009 05:11 am
@Darkpoet,
Darkpoet;99781 wrote:
Basing on my current events happening to my life right now, I would say I would choose to never have been born. But, then I would have never answered this question, nor experiencing the events that have occurred to make me choose not being born at all.

this is VERY puzzling....


You say that as if answering this question has given your life meaning. I assume that is not the case.

But it's fairly simple, really; do you ascribe life a negative value judgement? It sounds fairly like it, certainly at the moment, with whatever is going on in your life. That is what the question is getting at.

I've not got this book yet, but I will get around to it.

---------- Post added 10-26-2009 at 11:13 AM ----------

validity;99773 wrote:
It may be an easy question to answer but I do not see that there is value on the answer as the answer is drawn from a lack of knowledge i.e I have never been "not born" in order to claim that this is a state I would prefer over having been born. Being a philosophy forum, I thought it an appropriate response.


You were "not born" for billions of years. Pick one of them and make the call.
 
Shostakovich phil
 
Reply Mon 26 Oct, 2009 10:32 am
@gojo1978,
gojo1978;99794 wrote:

I've not got this book yet, but I will get around to it.

---------- Post added 10-26-20at 11:13 AM ----------

Thanks for the tag ... read the introduction ... I could have written that.

Missed my big chance. Had no idea there was a market for such heresy.
 
 

 
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