what makes human life more valuable than spiders'?

Get Email Updates Email this Topic Print this Page

manored
 
Reply Fri 11 Dec, 2009 06:38 pm
@buffalobill90,
buffalobill90;110325 wrote:
Consciousness is what makes human life more valuable than spider life. A spider has no conscious mind since it lacks the necessary cerebral apparatus to sustain conscious experience; therefore, spiders are not conscious of the harm inflicted on them, whereas humans are - the conscious experience of harm is pain. Spiders are not entitled to respect, but conscious humans are since they are capable of conscious suffering.
Is consciousness really relevant? after all, how to even define it? When we can tell someone is conscient? Is a dog, a pig, a dolphing, conscient?

I think that ability to feel pain is not really a good reference. Then, can we kill a person nobody knows if we do so painlessly?
 
buffalobill90
 
Reply Fri 11 Dec, 2009 08:01 pm
@manored,
manored;110353 wrote:
Is consciousness really relevant? after all, how to even define it? When we can tell someone is conscient? Is a dog, a pig, a dolphing, conscient?

I think that ability to feel pain is not really a good reference. Then, can we kill a person nobody knows if we do so painlessly?



Consciousness is of course relevant. If something is not conscious it needn't be given respect as an individual. Should a stone or a plant be given respect? Is it immoral to harm a statue or a fungus? What about microbes?

How to detect consciousness has been a subject of great dispute. The mirror test is inuitively attractive; if something recognises its reflection as a reflection of itself it must have some kind of self-awareness. However, negative results are difficult to interpret in this test. The delay test is also an appealing method.

Only a handful of species pass the mirror test. Not even human infants pass it. Dolphins, apes and elephants do, as do magpies.

I think the ability to feel pain (and possibly pleasure) is the only reference for morality. If no one could suffer, what would be the point? Would it be necessary to respect anyone if you couldn't possibly harm them?

Killing an unconscious, anonymous human would not be moral if they could have been revived. If not, perhaps the unpalatable conclusion is that, yes, we can kill them. It is thankfully unlikely to encounter such a situation in real life, however.
 
Diogenes phil
 
Reply Wed 10 Mar, 2010 11:41 pm
@Shinhyung,
I don't see how this could ever relate to philosophy, this should be a question about evolution of specimens in general.

With that in mind, I think the only species you can safely take off this planet without "disturbing the peace" are Homo sapiens. I detest them with a passion.
 
Pyrrho
 
Reply Thu 11 Mar, 2010 01:00 pm
@manored,
manored wrote:
...
aedes wrote:
ask a spider his perspective on the question Wink
nice idea =)

"do you care if i kill you? No answer means no"
...


Απασχολείτε εάν σας σκοτώνω;

---------- Post added 03-11-2010 at 03:34 PM ----------

Theaetetus;109755 wrote:
Humans make human life more valuable than spiders. As a value creating being, a human has the capability to make himself more valuable than other things if he so decides.


A human also has the capability to make him (or her) self less valuable than other things if he (or she) so decides. No spider has ever come close to doing the damage done by the worst person, or even the 1000th from the worst person. People can have a larger impact, which can be good, bad, or indifferent. So, spiders are better than many people, and worse than many others. Consequently, killing a spider is better than killing some people, and worse than killing others.
 
manored
 
Reply Sat 13 Mar, 2010 11:01 am
@Diogenes phil,
Diogenes;138536 wrote:
With that in mind, I think the only species you can safely take off this planet without "disturbing the peace" are Homo sapiens. I detest them with a passion.
What peace? Humans kill thenselves, animals kill each other, the earth earthquakes. Maybe we need to get rid of everything =)

Pyrrho;138655 wrote:
Απασχολείτε εάν σας σκοτώνω;
Sorry but I dont understand (or even reconize) this language =)
 
Doubt doubt
 
Reply Sat 13 Mar, 2010 11:27 am
@Shinhyung,
Shinhyung;88093 wrote:
I was thinking about this while killing a spider one day. I was quite scared to touch it or smash and burst it (urrgh) so I hoovered it! Well it must have been a shock and torture for it and I'm a bit sorry, but I find myself thinking, "well it's only a spider..."

I wouldn't have got over it so easily killing another person though.

Why is a person's life better than a spider's (I'm sure it is!!)? Because we are bigger? Live longer? Are cleverer? Or do we only think it because we are human ourselves?

(:popcorn:I just found out there were loads more smilies than I thought and I just love this one called popcorn.:offtopic:)

Absolutely nothing. but if i had to say something my life would be bet on the ability to assume it is, in combination with an epic ability to disassociate.
 
MiseryMyMuse
 
Reply Thu 25 Mar, 2010 06:38 pm
@Shinhyung,
Animal life = human life = plant life.
We kill because we CAN.
 
sometime sun
 
Reply Thu 25 Mar, 2010 07:56 pm
@manored,
A humans life is only as important as a humans life.
A spiders life is only as important as a spiders life.
 
manored
 
Reply Fri 26 Mar, 2010 07:24 am
@MiseryMyMuse,
MiseryMyMuse;143782 wrote:
Animal life = human life = plant life.
We kill because we CAN.
But we do giving different levels of importance to things, right? While its true that before the universe there is no really any difference between anything, thats not true for us humans, we give different "grades" to things.

sometime sun;143803 wrote:
A humans life is only as important as a humans life.
A spiders life is only as important as a spiders life.
You arent really saying anything =)
 
sometime sun
 
Reply Fri 26 Mar, 2010 06:18 pm
@manored,
manored;143954 wrote:

You arent really saying anything =)

Exactly but neither is this question.
(To me anyways)
 
prothero
 
Reply Fri 26 Mar, 2010 06:45 pm
@Shinhyung,
I can not imagine anyone would have any difficulty killing a black widow or a brown recluse spider to save the life of a child. I would hardly have any sympathy for any ethical notion or system which would consider them equal in value.

One spiders life is not equal to one human life. Why because of the overall level of experience and value in human versus spider life.
On the other hand one human life may not be equal to the value of all the spiders on the planet. Spiders are part of the natural world, and play some role in the system of nature.

Things are on the whole well arranged and arranged for some purpose or reason (very teleological I know). We are part of nature not the purpose of nature and we severely disrupt the entire ecological system at our own peril. We could well become the cause of our own demise.
 
manored
 
Reply Sat 27 Mar, 2010 01:36 pm
@prothero,
prothero;144318 wrote:

Things are on the whole well arranged and arranged for some purpose or reason (very teleological I know). We are part of nature not the purpose of nature and we severely disrupt the entire ecological system at our own peril. We could well become the cause of our own demise.
But if we are part of nature, I prefer to think we are a natural force of change in the world... not that it will make us kill ourselves any less =)
 
Rwa001
 
Reply Sat 27 Mar, 2010 01:49 pm
@manored,
I think Prothero summed it up very well. Humans are quantifiably more capable than spiders. So any one human would be have more inherent worth than any one spider. He also rightfully points out that we as a species (to this point) cannot reproduce the function that spiders serve in the global ecosystem.

If this is only a matter of spiders, and not of animals in general, then I would also argue that anything I think might potentially kill me while I'm sleeping (like a spider that is chilling in my bedroom) has voided itself of worth. At least to me. And I'm the only judge that matters in this case.
 
Pyrrho
 
Reply Sat 27 Mar, 2010 02:07 pm
@Rwa001,
Rwa001;144768 wrote:
I think Prothero summed it up very well. Humans are quantifiably more capable than spiders. ...


Try constructing a web. The simple fact is, spiders and people have different abilities (and different spiders have different abilities than other spiders, and different humans have different abilities than other humans). But that does not make the one better than the other; it makes them different. Coming up with the idea that the one is better is going to take something else.
 
Wisdom Seeker
 
Reply Wed 14 Apr, 2010 01:42 pm
@Shinhyung,
because mans life has great use...
 
LizKing3
 
Reply Wed 14 Apr, 2010 02:43 pm
@Shinhyung,
Shinhyung;88093 wrote:
I was thinking about this while killing a spider one day. I was quite scared to touch it or smash and burst it (urrgh) so I hoovered it! Well it must have been a shock and torture for it and I'm a bit sorry, but I find myself thinking, "well it's only a spider..."

I wouldn't have got over it so easily killing another person though.

Why is a person's life better than a spider's (I'm sure it is!!)? Because we are bigger? Live longer? Are cleverer? Or do we only think it because we are human ourselves?

(:popcorn:I just found out there were loads more smilies than I thought and I just love this one called popcorn.:offtopic:)

I think the relevant question would be more about the assumption that humans are better. There is something inherently arrogant with that. Rather than "WHY is a person better than a spider?" maybe the question should be more like, "IS a person better than a spider?"

Pyrrho (I think) said something along the lines of being people being different from spiders, but not necessarily better. I agree with this logic. Although a human capability may be perceived to be greater, we are all subject the same laws of nature. we all have a beginning, middle and end.
 
manored
 
Reply Wed 14 Apr, 2010 08:45 pm
@Wisdom Seeker,
Wisdom Seeker;151941 wrote:
because mans life has great use...
For man =)

LizKing3;151972 wrote:
I think the relevant question would be more about the assumption that humans are better. There is something inherently arrogant with that. Rather than "WHY is a person better than a spider?" maybe the question should be more like, "IS a person better than a spider?"

Considering we all value humans above spiders, and its very unlikely this thread will change our view in that regard, I think the question was adequate.
 
Wisdom Seeker
 
Reply Thu 15 Apr, 2010 08:30 am
@Shinhyung,
manored;152145 wrote:
For man =)


lets compare the spiders and humans to their overall, the greater the overall, the more life valuable,

except if their is a difference, something unique, has specialty, but if one is better, then i stick with it.

 
manored
 
Reply Thu 15 Apr, 2010 09:17 pm
@Wisdom Seeker,
Wisdom Seeker;152245 wrote:
lets compare the spiders and humans to their overall, the greater the overall, the more life valuable,

except if their is a difference, something unique, has specialty, but if one is better, then i stick with it.

But we still need to use human values to do that, we cannot be impartial about something that involves us.
 
Rwa001
 
Reply Tue 20 Apr, 2010 08:21 pm
@manored,
A human may be incapable of building a web, but we have created materials that are stronger than the web, and we can duplicate the functionality of a web with ease. We have houses and bug-catchers. Bam. More capable than a spider.

I think the main issue here is that we're not all on the same page. Are we trying to decide what it would mean to be 'better'?
 
 

 
Copyright © 2022 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.02 seconds on 08/12/2022 at 09:27:06