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RE: [Sartre] meaning

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  • Vasilis, June E (June)
    Perhaps meaning is something we assign, not something we find. It s in the search we grow disappointed, finding more and more reflections of ourselves.. it s
    Message 1 of 16 , Apr 4, 2004
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      Perhaps meaning is something we assign, not something we find. It's in
      the search we grow disappointed, finding more and more reflections of
      ourselves.. it's in the coalescing of what matters most to us (if we
      would be so brave), individually, that meaning is assigned..

      That might take some responsibility.. addressing old indoctrinated
      beliefs which might interfere with the probable point in life..

      The point of life might be to learn to love.
      Anything that makes us feel contracted, alone, painful and absurd is
      probably the wrong route../wrong thought.. (a good indicator is the pain
      we are feeling).

      The right route might be the one that makes us feel expanded, light,
      joyous, and inspired.. ideally, in a non-conditional (not depending on
      an outside object) way. At this point.. any joy will do.. and not at
      the expense of another.. it wouldn't be joy then.

      Joy to the world.
      We can't afford one negative thought now...

      If it hurts to think a thought, it's a thought we shouldn't be thinking,
      ergo, the pain and anger, but that can be addictive too.. for some, the
      only indicator that they are alive.

      Meaning is something we ultimately assign, not something we find..




      -----Original Message-----
      From: George Walton [mailto:iambiguously@...]
      Sent: Sunday, April 04, 2004 1:09 PM
      To: Sartre@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [Sartre] meaning



      Zein Z <zanzoon3@...> wrote:

      <<<What about starting to think about a life's point
      rather than meaning. when we speak of meaning we are
      speaking of absurdity. when we speak of a point we are
      examining and endlessly questioning our existence as
      we are doing right now>>>

      The difficulty here is there is no way to make the meaning of words like
      "meaning" and "point" precise or objective. What they might mean to you
      may well be at odds with what they mean to others. And there is no
      philosophical calculus to reconile them. For me they are too close to
      call. The "point" of life would seem to be subsumed in its meaning. But
      if there can be no essential meaning of life...what's the point of
      trying to differentiate them? The point for me is to live my life from
      day to day with a minimal of dysfunction.

      <<<I assume that the majority of
      whoever's in this group is questioning their existence
      in one way or another without knowing why. Although
      THAT (knowing why) might give "meaning" to existence.
      why did Sartre do that? what is the point? There is no
      point? But it's impossible to explain everything in
      words and if humans had no language perhaps life
      wouldn't have been absurd because we wouldn't have
      thought of such a notion.>>>

      This is largely my own "point": that human language has its inherent
      limitations. There are things it can and cannot tell us literally about
      the world we live in. The language of natural science, for example,
      involves a high degree of universiality. When chemists discuss chemical
      interactions or astrophysicists discuss planetary orbits there is not
      going to be a lot of squablling about "the point" or "what words mean".
      But whenever the discussion revolves instead around moral and political
      interactions or aesthetic values or the nature of identity etc. there
      will always be a lot of conflict. And that is because there is no way to
      make the words we exchange line up with any high defgree of contiguity.



      <<<Language... religion are the
      two closely tied reasons behind humanity's "saneness"
      and "insanness". Religion-our primal creation- is the
      cause and reason of meaning. It is what millions live
      for, hoping they'd get the good after-life in reward
      to their "immaterial" goodness of being. Once you
      leave that, you are in another state of mind and you
      start questioning your existence.>>>

      The problem is that many folks leave religion behind without really
      questioning it at all. They merely except Christianity or Islam or
      Judaism or a hundred other conflicting and contradictory ontological
      creeds as the starting point for questioning everything else. Then the
      "answers" they come up with are hammered into the religion. They don't
      believe what they see so much as see what they believe. Why? Because it
      is what they have been brainwashed from early childhood to believe is
      true...or because their religious beliefs make them feel good. And who
      wants to feel bad, right?

      <<<One will maybe come
      to the conclusion that "life" has no meaning only
      after realizing that there is no life after this one,
      "this" one being not only the individual's, but the
      human civilization's. But what is meaning? Why do we
      look for meaning? And how would meaning change our
      "life"? Sure emotions are there and they play the
      reason right now. That is why we want meaning..because
      we are sure that since we "feel", we have the right to
      know.>>>

      We don't look for meaning so much as meaning looks for us. In fact,
      during the first 10 to 12 years of our lives we are profoundly
      indoctrintated by all that is "other" to view the meaning of life pretty
      much as they do. The only geniunely interesting question then becomes:
      what happens when we become more or less automnomous and can start in on
      questiong what we have been accultrated to believe is True. What can we
      know objectively then?

      <<<We read Nietzsche, Sartre, Freud,
      Lacan...etc etc etc but we cannot get answers, every
      individual has to find a "path" for peace of mind- for
      no particular reason except to fulfill the chemical
      reactions that cause feelings, and it doesn't matter
      what the people I mentioned have said because if there
      is a point in this life, we will never know what it is
      because we are looking for nothing, and that is what
      makes life absurd.>>>

      I agree. We will never find the Meaning Of Life. And that, in part, is
      because reading Nietzsche and Sartre and Camus etc. is more about
      figuring out how to ask more intelligent questions than in deriving The
      Really True Answers. If only because, one by one, we all die and for
      eternity become nothing at all [but sub-atomic star stuff]. If that is
      an answer you can live with [for now] at least you don't commit suicide,
      right?

      George




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    • Paul
      zz, one of the better posts i have read from here. cheers. individual has to find a path for peace of mind- for no particular reason except to fulfill the
      Message 2 of 16 , Apr 5, 2004
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        zz, one of the better posts i have read from here. cheers.

        "individual has to find a "path" for peace of mind- for
        no particular reason except to fulfill the chemical
        reactions that cause feelings"


        The problem is, however, that the piece of mind you might
        momentarily acheive is perceived as just that - piece of mind. Once
        you walk out of plato's cave he won't let you back in, and you will
        always have that understanding in the back of your mind, that it's
        all a lie. the trick you see, is to get a lobectomy and completely
        forget about the phrase "piece of mind."


        "You know, when I was a boy, I really wanted a catcher's mitt, but
        my dad wouldn't get it for me. So I held my breath until I passed
        out and banged my head on the coffee table.
        The doctor thought I might have brain damage."

        Homer J Simpson - the greatest of them all. Never for a moment was
        not sure that his life was the right one.

        paul

        --- In Sartre@yahoogroups.com, Zein Z <zanzoon3@y...> wrote:
        > Hello, I'm new to this! Interesting input from people
        > here.. I think I'll just jump right in ;)
        >
        > ------------------------------------------------------
        >
        > What about starting to think about a life's point
        > rather than meaning. when we speak of meaning we are
        > speaking of absurdity. when we speak of a point we are
        > examining and endlessly questioning our existence as
        > we are doing right now. I assume that the majority of
        > whoever's in this group is questioning their existence
        > in one way or another without knowing why. Although
        > THAT (knowing why) might give "meaning" to existence.
        > why did Sartre do that? what is the point? There is no
        > point? But it's impossible to explain everything in
        > words and if humans had no language perhaps life
        > wouldn't have been absurd because we wouldn't have
        > thought of such a notion. Language... religion are the
        > two closely tied reasons behind humanity's "saneness"
        > and "insanness". Religion-our primal creation- is the
        > cause and reason of meaning. It is what millions live
        > for, hoping they'd get the good after-life in reward
        > to their "immaterial" goodness of being. Once you
        > leave that, you are in another state of mind and you
        > start questioning your existence. One will maybe come
        > to the conclusion that "life" has no meaning only
        > after realizing that there is no life after this one,
        > "this" one being not only the individual's, but the
        > human civilization's. But what is meaning? Why do we
        > look for meaning? And how would meaning change our
        > "life"? Sure emotions are there and they play the
        > reason right now. That is why we want meaning..because
        > we are sure that since we "feel", we have the right to
        > know. OR else there would be no point in politics and
        > human rights, order, art and music...etc. I think I
        > will not go on with my pointless paragraph for now; it
        > would be interesting to read some answers (and I hope
        > I do get some from anyone who picks up what I'm
        > expressing). We read Nietzsche, Sartre, Freud,
        > Lacan...etc etc etc but we cannot get answers, every
        > individual has to find a "path" for peace of mind- for
        > no particular reason except to fulfill the chemical
        > reactions that cause feelings, and it doesn't matter
        > what the people I mentioned have said because if there
        > is a point in this life, we will never know what it is
        > because we are looking for nothing, and that is what
        > makes life absurd. If or an individual person, there
        > is difference between 1) finding out that in a week,
        > Earth would be hit by a flaming object X and not a
        > single living organism will stay alive; all of us will
        > die at the same minute and there will be no "life"
        > anymore; And 2) finding out that this individual has
        > one week to live and then will die of a chronic
        > desease/accident. The impact on feelings of these two
        > hypothetical situations is vastly different. To know
        > why that is, is perhaps close to finding meaning to
        > this life and stopping to think that it is absurd?
        > In short, yes it is a loophole...and we are fucked...
        > and it doesn't matter. What seems to matter is
        > preserving our precious existence, without having a
        > point to it because we are not immortal. Immortality
        > might be a sarcastic answer to our questions some
        > people might argue, and already have. In vain, it is
        > not...because it "means" nothing to us.
        >
        >
        > okkay now...i'll stop here.
        > ZZ
        >
        > ------------------------------------------------------
        > "I was just thinking...that here we sit, all of us,
        > eating and drinking to preserve our precious existence
        > and really there is nothing, nothing absolutely no
        > reason for existing." ~Sartre
        >
        >
        > __________________________________
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      • George Walton
        Vasilis, June E (June) wrote:
        Message 3 of 16 , Apr 5, 2004
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          "Vasilis, June E (June)" <jevasilis@...> wrote:

          <<<The point of life might be to learn to love.
          Anything that makes us feel contracted, alone, painful and absurd is
          probably the wrong route../wrong thought.. (a good indicator is the pain
          we are feeling).>>>

          Learn to love...what? Isn't so much that impales the world on sectarian violence the fact that people come to love things that are in conflict with the things others come to love? What we should learn to love perhaps is the realization that no one really has monopoly on things worthy of being loved. That includes nations and Gods and moral and political agendas said to encompass Truth and Logic and Rational thought.

          <<<The right route might be the one that makes us feel expanded, light,
          joyous, and inspired.. ideally, in a non-conditional (not depending on
          an outside object) way. At this point.. any joy will do.. and not at
          the expense of another.. it wouldn't be joy then>>>

          Unfortunately, most folks seem intent on experiencing joy that does not really take into consideration others at all. We go into Wal-mart, for example, to purchase something that will bring us happiness and satisfaction but we don't stop and think: "what about the social and economuc conditions of those who made this merchandise? Was it manufactured by kids working 12 hour days in sweatshops making pennies? Was it made by political prisoners? Was it made in a nation that has no democracy or freedom or even a rudimentary sense of human rights and justice for those who toil in factories or fields? The individual does not exist in a vacuum---and neither does his or her love or joy. And the meaning we "assign" to anything is also profoundly situated out in the real world. In fact, the first thing we might ask is this: who assigned the meaning to me?

          George










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        • Tommy Beavitt
          But even here, my friend, it is hard to reach the point . To minimise dysfunction you have to define function - or have it defined for you. Tommy
          Message 4 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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            But even here, my friend, it is hard to reach the "point". To minimise
            dysfunction you have to define "function" - or have it defined for you.

            Tommy

            On 4 Apr 2004, at 18:09, George Walton wrote:

            > The point for me is to live my life from day to day with a minimal of
            > dysfunction.
          • Tommy Beavitt
            June, ... It seems that the language that you are using here is better because it gets around the essentialist problem of finding the meaning out there ,
            Message 5 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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              June,


              On 4 Apr 2004, at 21:35, Vasilis, June E (June) wrote:

              > Meaning is something we ultimately assign, not something we find..


              It seems that the language that you are using here is better because it
              gets around the essentialist problem of finding the meaning "out
              there", something that is good for all people in all seasons.

              But to find something IS to assign something. Because we always
              interpret being-in-itself AS something, the "as" is what we have
              assigned. I am assigning meaning to this lump of plastic and metal in
              front of me, I interpret it AS a computer and lo and behold I can write
              a message to you on it.

              But this brings me onto another point. When two different beings
              construct (or comprehend the construction of) two different
              self-worlds, they use logic to do this. Logic is the universal language
              of being, and all sentient beings have the capability of comprehending
              logical process.

              However, this by no means assures us that the RESULTS of that logical
              process of self-world construction will be compatible. To find out the
              reasons for any incompatibility it would be necessary to trace the
              process back to the underlying assumptions.

              Computers obey exactly the same logical rules as human and other
              sentient beings. However, the structures they create are, by
              definition, consistent with EACH OTHER. The degree to which this is
              true, eg. that Linux structures are consistent with Microsoft, is the
              proper debate for a forum other than this one. But in general, while
              human beings are capable of creating divergent self-worlds, the logical
              structures exemplified on computers are convergent.

              There is a peculiar phenomenon which occurs when a human being, who has
              a considerable history of logical construction of self-world, but has
              not become cognisant with the logical structures of computers,
              encounters a computer and attempts to make sense of it. Such a person
              typically considers the world around them as comprising of objective
              facts of one kind and another, of which the computer is another
              example, not realising that in order for the computer to function
              properly it is necessary for them to interpret the object in front of
              them AS a computer . In other words it is necessary for them to
              interpret the computer AS a being-in-itself that is capable of
              exemplifying complex logical structures that are consistent with
              logical structures exemplified by other beings-in-themselves conforming
              to the interpretation, "computer".

              In such cases, and I have witnessed this too many times as a freelance
              IT adviser to be persuaded that this is not so, the logical self-world
              of the computer (being-in-itself) comes into conflict with the logical
              self-world of the human (being-for-itself) and the computer loses! It
              will typically crash, freeze or do one of a number of other things
              which computers aren't supposed to do.

              Better coding results in operating systems that are more
              self-consistent, and therefore will crash or freeze less, but I contend
              that it is a general rule that there is no coding that can create an
              operating system that can cope with the problem that occurs when the
              logical self-world of a computer encounters a divergent logical
              self-world of a human being.

              Any thoughts?

              Tommy
            • josemariahizon30
              isn t it because we have been used to and raised to believe in ideals such as purpose and meaning that we try to find these even though we know that there is
              Message 6 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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                isn't it because we have been used to and raised to believe in
                ideals such as purpose and meaning that we try to find these even
                though we know that there is none.

                it is the futility that we know a reality that is not of our own and
                is totally regardless of what exists. the reality that we know of is
                and will only be nothing but perceptions. we strive to follow the
                reality that is dictated to us by someone that is no different from
                us that is why it becomes futile for us to find meaning and purpose.
              • George Walton
                If it weren t so tedious and time-consuming most of the words in my posts would be placed in parenthesis. There is no point to life in the sense of stooping
                Message 7 of 16 , Apr 6, 2004
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                  If it weren't so tedious and time-consuming most of the words in my posts would be placed in parenthesis. There is no "point" to life in the sense of stooping over and picking it up off the sidewalk like a rock.

                  So, you certainly never reach it---literally. In fact, the most important words used in philosophy [by far] can only be groped at and defined approximately, existentially, ambiguously, contingently.

                  But since most folks have cinderblocks for minds, even if you define everything religously [if you get my drift] they will still insist on redefining it The Right Way for you.

                  Their way, usually.

                  George



                  Tommy Beavitt <tommy@...> wrote:
                  But even here, my friend, it is hard to reach the "point". To minimise
                  dysfunction you have to define "function" - or have it defined for you.

                  Tommy

                  On 4 Apr 2004, at 18:09, George Walton wrote:

                  > The point for me is to live my life from day to day with a minimal of
                  > dysfunction.



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                • zanzoon3
                  ... It s in ... of ... pain ... on ... at ... thinking, ... the ... Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good and bad, pain and
                  Message 8 of 16 , Apr 7, 2004
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                    "Vasilis, June E (June)" <jevasilis@a...> wrote:
                    > Perhaps meaning is something we assign, not something we find.
                    It's in
                    > the search we grow disappointed, finding more and more reflections
                    of
                    > ourselves.. it's in the coalescing of what matters most to us (if we
                    > would be so brave), individually, that meaning is assigned..
                    >
                    > That might take some responsibility.. addressing old indoctrinated
                    > beliefs which might interfere with the probable point in life..
                    >
                    > The point of life might be to learn to love.
                    > Anything that makes us feel contracted, alone, painful and absurd is
                    > probably the wrong route../wrong thought.. (a good indicator is the
                    pain
                    > we are feeling).
                    >
                    > The right route might be the one that makes us feel expanded, light,
                    > joyous, and inspired.. ideally, in a non-conditional (not depending
                    on
                    > an outside object) way. At this point.. any joy will do.. and not
                    at
                    > the expense of another.. it wouldn't be joy then.
                    >
                    > Joy to the world.
                    > We can't afford one negative thought now...
                    >
                    > If it hurts to think a thought, it's a thought we shouldn't be
                    thinking,
                    > ergo, the pain and anger, but that can be addictive too.. for some,
                    the
                    > only indicator that they are alive.
                    >
                    > Meaning is something we ultimately assign, not something we find..


                    Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good
                    and bad, pain and joy...etc, which has been assigned to us at some
                    point, by US. We are what we think we are-- that is what "being"
                    appears to be about. We can use parentheses for words, definitions,
                    explanations, and in the end we know that it is just a matter
                    of "opinion" whether life has meaning or not, and it does not matter
                    because obviously individuals have their own ideas about life since
                    they follow principles or religions ..etc which again could be
                    perceievd as brainwashing them into thinking that there is a "point"
                    in life. I've heard that happiness is the point, I've heard love is,
                    I've heard God is...ETC, but it doesn't really matter. Obviously when
                    one person is totally sure that s/he is alive and that the most
                    important thing in life is to be for example "stable" and have a
                    family (ie. bring more persons to this "life" for no reason
                    really)..etc-- is just not being in the loop of questioning meaning
                    and what not. BUT What I was after in my previous post was simply,
                    What is life? as in..What is going on? it's highly philosophical in
                    terms of it having absolutely no concrete meaning. But since there
                    isn't a threshold to the questioning of existence or being, we keep
                    asking. What triggers that is interesting to me and makes me think
                    what "life" is. How we think of life as this system that keeps going
                    for the sake of our survival, is just what we are used to follow in a
                    sense... Well, why do we want to be functional? it's very
                    important..but why. Why do we "need" things...

                    Negative thoughts, pain, love, joy, inspiration..etc are all feelings
                    that we label as such. Whether they are "good" or "bad", the whole
                    concept of us differentiating between them indicates what we call
                    emotions.. or chemical reactions. To me it does not give an
                    indication of "life" as a system....since I dont know what "life" is.
                    Vague.

                    > -----Original Message-----
                    >
                    >
                  • zanzoon3
                    ... It s in ... of ... pain ... on ... at ... thinking, ... the ... Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good and bad, pain and
                    Message 9 of 16 , Apr 7, 2004
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                      "Vasilis, June E (June)" <jevasilis@a...> wrote:
                      > Perhaps meaning is something we assign, not something we find.
                      It's in
                      > the search we grow disappointed, finding more and more reflections
                      of
                      > ourselves.. it's in the coalescing of what matters most to us (if we
                      > would be so brave), individually, that meaning is assigned..
                      >
                      > That might take some responsibility.. addressing old indoctrinated
                      > beliefs which might interfere with the probable point in life..
                      >
                      > The point of life might be to learn to love.
                      > Anything that makes us feel contracted, alone, painful and absurd is
                      > probably the wrong route../wrong thought.. (a good indicator is the
                      pain
                      > we are feeling).
                      >
                      > The right route might be the one that makes us feel expanded, light,
                      > joyous, and inspired.. ideally, in a non-conditional (not depending
                      on
                      > an outside object) way. At this point.. any joy will do.. and not
                      at
                      > the expense of another.. it wouldn't be joy then.
                      >
                      > Joy to the world.
                      > We can't afford one negative thought now...
                      >
                      > If it hurts to think a thought, it's a thought we shouldn't be
                      thinking,
                      > ergo, the pain and anger, but that can be addictive too.. for some,
                      the
                      > only indicator that they are alive.
                      >
                      > Meaning is something we ultimately assign, not something we find..


                      Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good
                      and bad, pain and joy...etc, which has been assigned to us at some
                      point, by US. We are what we think we are-- that is what "being"
                      appears to be about. We can use parentheses for words, definitions,
                      explanations, and in the end we know that it is just a matter
                      of "opinion" whether life has meaning or not, and it does not matter
                      because obviously individuals have their own ideas about life since
                      they follow principles or religions ..etc which again could be
                      perceievd as brainwashing them into thinking that there is a "point"
                      in life. I've heard that happiness is the point, I've heard love is,
                      I've heard God is...ETC, but it doesn't really matter. Obviously when
                      one person is totally sure that s/he is alive and that the most
                      important thing in life is to be for example "stable" and have a
                      family (ie. bring more persons to this "life" for no reason
                      really)..etc-- is just not being in the loop of questioning meaning
                      and what not. BUT What I was after in my previous post was simply,
                      What is life? as in..What is going on? it's highly philosophical in
                      terms of it having absolutely no concrete meaning. But since there
                      isn't a threshold to the questioning of existence or being, we keep
                      asking. What triggers that is interesting to me and makes me think
                      what "life" is. How we think of life as this system that keeps going
                      for the sake of our survival, is just what we are used to follow in a
                      sense... Well, why do we want to be functional? it's very
                      important..but why. Why do we "need" things...

                      Negative thoughts, pain, love, joy, inspiration..etc are all feelings
                      that we label as such. Whether they are "good" or "bad", the whole
                      concept of us differentiating between them indicates what we call
                      emotions.. or chemical reactions. To me it does not give an
                      indication of "life" as a system....since I dont know what "life" is.
                      Vague.

                      > -----Original Message-----
                      >
                      >
                    • zanzoon3
                      ... It s in ... of ... pain ... on ... at ... thinking, ... the ... Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good and bad, pain and
                      Message 10 of 16 , Apr 7, 2004
                      • 0 Attachment
                        "Vasilis, June E (June)" <jevasilis@a...> wrote:
                        > Perhaps meaning is something we assign, not something we find.
                        It's in
                        > the search we grow disappointed, finding more and more reflections
                        of
                        > ourselves.. it's in the coalescing of what matters most to us (if we
                        > would be so brave), individually, that meaning is assigned..
                        >
                        > That might take some responsibility.. addressing old indoctrinated
                        > beliefs which might interfere with the probable point in life..
                        >
                        > The point of life might be to learn to love.
                        > Anything that makes us feel contracted, alone, painful and absurd is
                        > probably the wrong route../wrong thought.. (a good indicator is the
                        pain
                        > we are feeling).
                        >
                        > The right route might be the one that makes us feel expanded, light,
                        > joyous, and inspired.. ideally, in a non-conditional (not depending
                        on
                        > an outside object) way. At this point.. any joy will do.. and not
                        at
                        > the expense of another.. it wouldn't be joy then.
                        >
                        > Joy to the world.
                        > We can't afford one negative thought now...
                        >
                        > If it hurts to think a thought, it's a thought we shouldn't be
                        thinking,
                        > ergo, the pain and anger, but that can be addictive too.. for some,
                        the
                        > only indicator that they are alive.
                        >
                        > Meaning is something we ultimately assign, not something we find..


                        Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good
                        and bad, pain and joy...etc, which has been assigned to us at some
                        point, by US. We are what we think we are-- that is what "being"
                        appears to be about. We can use parentheses for words, definitions,
                        explanations, and in the end we know that it is just a matter
                        of "opinion" whether life has meaning or not, and it does not matter
                        because obviously individuals have their own ideas about life since
                        they follow principles or religions ..etc which again could be
                        perceievd as brainwashing them into thinking that there is a "point"
                        in life. I've heard that happiness is the point, I've heard love is,
                        I've heard God is...ETC, but it doesn't really matter. Obviously when
                        one person is totally sure that s/he is alive and that the most
                        important thing in life is to be for example "stable" and have a
                        family (ie. bring more persons to this "life" for no reason
                        really)..etc-- is just not being in the loop of questioning meaning
                        and what not. BUT What I was after in my previous post was simply,
                        What is life? as in..What is going on? it's highly philosophical in
                        terms of it having absolutely no concrete meaning. But since there
                        isn't a threshold to the questioning of existence or being, we keep
                        asking. What triggers that is interesting to me and makes me think
                        what "life" is. How we think of life as this system that keeps going
                        for the sake of our survival, is just what we are used to follow in a
                        sense... Well, why do we want to be functional? it's very
                        important..but why. Why do we "need" things...

                        Negative thoughts, pain, love, joy, inspiration..etc are all feelings
                        that we label as such. Whether they are "good" or "bad", the whole
                        concept of us differentiating between them indicates what we call
                        emotions.. or chemical reactions. To me it does not give an
                        indication of "life" as a system....since I dont know what "life" is.
                        Vague.

                        > -----Original Message-----
                        >
                        >
                      • George Walton
                        josemariahizon30 wrote:
                        Message 11 of 16 , Apr 7, 2004
                        • 0 Attachment
                          josemariahizon30 <josemariahizon30@...> wrote:

                          <<<isn't it because we have been used to and raised to believe in
                          ideals such as purpose and meaning that we try to find these even
                          though we know that there is none.>>>

                          Yes, I agree. Regarding human identity there is no in-itself; there is only a for-itself. But what does it really mean to have a "sense of self"? It means by and large that, as Dasein, we are "thrown" adventitiously into an existential stew at birth, the ingredients of which we had no choice regarding whatseover. And then for 10 to 12 years we are roundly indoctrinated to view the world as those who brainwashed us do. In other words, we come to reflect our historical times and our culture in such a way that most people go to the grave barely aware of how this works at all; and few make any real changes in the script, right? For example, does anyone imagine those Islamic extremists following bin Laden or Sadr in Iraq and those 80 million evangelical Christians in America have spent a lot of quality time thinking about the nature of their identity philosophically?

                          <<<it is the futility that we know a reality that is not of our own and
                          is totally regardless of what exists. the reality that we know of is
                          and will only be nothing but perceptions. we strive to follow the
                          reality that is dictated to us by someone that is no different from
                          us that is why it becomes futile for us to find meaning and purpose.>>>

                          Indeed, the most problematic perspective for most "enlightened" and "educated" folks to accept is this one: there is no more or less authentic way to live. Even if you do think through your own acculturation and try to devise a more "rational" political and moral and philosophical agenda there is no way that one can be defended over any other one. Not sans God. That was, of course, Nietzsche's point: how are we to live in a nihilistic world...a world where there is no objective/metaphysical/logical vantage point from which to differentiate right from wrong? In fact I am currently reading Ronald Aronson's Sartre and Camus, and he delineates quite vividly how easy it was for two men who shared so much in common philosophically to claw at each other tooth and nail when push came to shove and it was time to situate that philosophy out in the real world of the Cold War and Communism and French Colonialism in Algeria.

                          George





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                        • Siegfried Steurer
                          As Camus states, one has to revolt against the absurd. One always finds one s burden again. But Sisyphus teaches the higher fidelity that negates the gods and
                          Message 12 of 16 , Apr 8, 2004
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                            As Camus states, one has to revolt against the absurd.

                            "One always finds one's burden again. But Sisyphus teaches the higher fidelity that negates the
                            gods and raises rocks. He too concludes that all is well. This universe henceforth without a
                            master seems to him neither sterile nor futile. Each atom of that stone, each mineral flake of
                            that night filled mountain, in itself forms a world. The struggle itself toward the heights is
                            enough to fill a man's heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy."

                            greets

                            --- josemariahizon30 <josemariahizon30@...> schrieb:
                            > isn't it because we have been used to and raised to believe in
                            > ideals such as purpose and meaning that we try to find these even
                            > though we know that there is none.
                            >
                            > it is the futility that we know a reality that is not of our own and
                            > is totally regardless of what exists. the reality that we know of is
                            > and will only be nothing but perceptions. we strive to follow the
                            > reality that is dictated to us by someone that is no different from
                            > us that is why it becomes futile for us to find meaning and purpose.
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > To unsubscribe, e-mail: Sartre-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                            >
                            > Yahoo! Groups Links
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >

                            =====
                            siegfried@... (DeSade/Gibmaatsuki) http://www.steurer.com
                            http://www.polyamory.at http://www.atheists-online.com

                            "Is god an atheist? If not, who created him? And if so, why can I not agree with him in unbelief?" John Nicholson




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                          • Jomar Hizon
                            and this revolt against the absurd is also an influence from other purpose driven forms of thought...is it always action and a desire to relieve us of our own
                            Message 13 of 16 , Apr 9, 2004
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                              and this revolt against the absurd is also an influence from other purpose driven forms of thought...is it always action and a desire to relieve us of our own absurd state that is going to make us continue our own conscious existence?

                              should we consider action(which is taught to humans as the way of living whether conscious or not) as the only way that we shall live.cannot one release oneself from the constraints of the way of thinking that further worsens our already absurd existence by driving us to act in which would never be of any change whatsoever(whereas if there be any change it would not matter at all). we are living in a reality of absurdity and futility why should we act to rebel against it, if it was to be futile and would not matter at all.

                              Siegfried Steurer <siegfriedsteurer@...> wrote:
                              As Camus states, one has to revolt against the absurd.

                              "One always finds one's burden again. But Sisyphus teaches the higher fidelity that negates the
                              gods and raises rocks. He too concludes that all is well. This universe henceforth without a
                              master seems to him neither sterile nor futile. Each atom of that stone, each mineral flake of
                              that night filled mountain, in itself forms a world. The struggle itself toward the heights is
                              enough to fill a man's heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy."

                              greets

                              --- josemariahizon30 <josemariahizon30@...> schrieb:
                              > isn't it because we have been used to and raised to believe in
                              > ideals such as purpose and meaning that we try to find these even
                              > though we know that there is none.
                              >
                              > it is the futility that we know a reality that is not of our own and
                              > is totally regardless of what exists. the reality that we know of is
                              > and will only be nothing but perceptions. we strive to follow the
                              > reality that is dictated to us by someone that is no different from
                              > us that is why it becomes futile for us to find meaning and purpose.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > To unsubscribe, e-mail: Sartre-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                              >
                              > Yahoo! Groups Links
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >

                              =====
                              siegfried@... (DeSade/Gibmaatsuki) http://www.steurer.com
                              http://www.polyamory.at http://www.atheists-online.com

                              "Is god an atheist? If not, who created him? And if so, why can I not agree with him in unbelief?" John Nicholson




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                            • Vasilis, June E (June)
                              Negative thoughts, pain, love, joy, inspiration..etc are all feelings that we label as such. Whether they are good or bad , the whole concept of us
                              Message 14 of 16 , Apr 12, 2004
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                                "Negative thoughts, pain, love, joy, inspiration..etc are all feelings
                                that we label as such. Whether they are "good" or "bad", the whole
                                concept of us differentiating between them indicates what we call
                                emotions.. or chemical reactions. To me it does not give an
                                indication of "life" as a system....since I dont know what "life" is.
                                Vague."

                                Since, when it comes down to it, life is experiential.. (aka)highly
                                subjective, then I suppose the 'feeling' of life is all we have to guide
                                us as to where we go next. Since, meaning is not something we find, but
                                something we assign.. then, I suppose at some point, I am talking about
                                responsibility of the individual on the meanings and values the
                                individual is reacting.. or responding to.

                                Sure, you can intellectualize your life away.. but, what we all want, I
                                believe, is to feel purposeful, confident, happy and to have good
                                inspiring relations with our world and everything in it... and those
                                relations are the sole responsibility of the person experiencing it..

                                So, why not choose joy? Why not choose something other than the fleeting
                                nature of immediate gratification?..

                                And it doesn't matter what route.. as long as you get there..
                                "When the windows of perception are cleansed, the universe will appear
                                as it is.. infinite".. William Blake...

                                best,
                                june
                                -----Original Message-----
                                From: zanzoon3 [mailto:zanzoon3@...]
                                Sent: Wednesday, April 07, 2004 3:05 AM
                                To: Sartre@yahoogroups.com
                                Subject: [Sartre] Re: meaning

                                "Vasilis, June E (June)" <jevasilis@a...> wrote:
                                > Perhaps meaning is something we assign, not something we find.
                                It's in
                                > the search we grow disappointed, finding more and more reflections
                                of
                                > ourselves.. it's in the coalescing of what matters most to us (if we
                                > would be so brave), individually, that meaning is assigned..
                                >
                                > That might take some responsibility.. addressing old indoctrinated
                                > beliefs which might interfere with the probable point in life..
                                >
                                > The point of life might be to learn to love.
                                > Anything that makes us feel contracted, alone, painful and absurd is
                                > probably the wrong route../wrong thought.. (a good indicator is the
                                pain
                                > we are feeling).
                                >
                                > The right route might be the one that makes us feel expanded, light,
                                > joyous, and inspired.. ideally, in a non-conditional (not depending
                                on
                                > an outside object) way. At this point.. any joy will do.. and not
                                at
                                > the expense of another.. it wouldn't be joy then.
                                >
                                > Joy to the world.
                                > We can't afford one negative thought now...
                                >
                                > If it hurts to think a thought, it's a thought we shouldn't be
                                thinking,
                                > ergo, the pain and anger, but that can be addictive too.. for some,
                                the
                                > only indicator that they are alive.
                                >
                                > Meaning is something we ultimately assign, not something we find..


                                Here again we get into the concept of subjective vs. objective, good
                                and bad, pain and joy...etc, which has been assigned to us at some
                                point, by US. We are what we think we are-- that is what "being"
                                appears to be about. We can use parentheses for words, definitions,
                                explanations, and in the end we know that it is just a matter
                                of "opinion" whether life has meaning or not, and it does not matter
                                because obviously individuals have their own ideas about life since
                                they follow principles or religions ..etc which again could be
                                perceievd as brainwashing them into thinking that there is a "point"
                                in life. I've heard that happiness is the point, I've heard love is,
                                I've heard God is...ETC, but it doesn't really matter. Obviously when
                                one person is totally sure that s/he is alive and that the most
                                important thing in life is to be for example "stable" and have a
                                family (ie. bring more persons to this "life" for no reason
                                really)..etc-- is just not being in the loop of questioning meaning
                                and what not. BUT What I was after in my previous post was simply,
                                What is life? as in..What is going on? it's highly philosophical in
                                terms of it having absolutely no concrete meaning. But since there
                                isn't a threshold to the questioning of existence or being, we keep
                                asking. What triggers that is interesting to me and makes me think
                                what "life" is. How we think of life as this system that keeps going
                                for the sake of our survival, is just what we are used to follow in a
                                sense... Well, why do we want to be functional? it's very
                                important..but why. Why do we "need" things...

                                Negative thoughts, pain, love, joy, inspiration..etc are all feelings
                                that we label as such. Whether they are "good" or "bad", the whole
                                concept of us differentiating between them indicates what we call
                                emotions.. or chemical reactions. To me it does not give an
                                indication of "life" as a system....since I dont know what "life" is.
                                Vague.

                                > -----Original Message-----
                                >
                                >





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