Torn Between Two Opposing Thoughts

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by Sora, Mar 1, 2017.

  1. Sora

    Sora Well-Known Member

    Hello friends,

    As of late, more and more, I have found myself greatly torn between two views of people, and the world at large, and this also plays into my personal views on myself, and my emotions.

    Ideally, I want us all to get along, to love each other, be peaceful, work towards a strong future as one species. To set aside all differences, and care for our fellow man and planet, to take full responsibility of being humans on this green world. Just as well on this coin, I seek to live my life peacefully, without anger, strife, grudges, hatred, to be kind to everyone, and live life to its fullest.

    This is all just ideally, however.

    More often than not, I find myself on the opposite end of the spectrum. I have no hope for our species or the planet, and that we all should die for what we've done to each other, and the world around us. That we're beyond repentance, and that everyday we just dig ourselves deeper, regression instead of progression. And in terms of my personal feelings and life, it fills me with anger and displeasure, makes me be spiteful towards my metaphorical fellow man, and even pushes me to not want to live amongst all this anymore, as I'm often so filled with resentment, anger, hatred, and sadness, directed towards so many things that seem almost beyond repair.

    So my question to you all - how does one reconcile these seemingly paradoxical beliefs? The first is the ideal, the second is where I'm kinda stuck in. I'm curious to hear all your thoughts on these beliefs and issues at large, as I spend a lot of time agonizing and pontificating on this.

    All thoughts and opinions welcome!
     
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  2. I have these same feelings, and then I struggle with my own identity as a result. Just want you to know you're not alone, if that's what you're feeling.

    I try to be a reasonable person, but the actions and behavior of other people always seem to rub me the wrong way. Not sure how to reconcile it; besides escapism.
     
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  3. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter

    I'm sure a lot of people experience the same thing.

    I think we have to accept that the human race has a lot to learn, and that a lot of the way we treat each other and our environment leaves a huge amount to be desired.
    But things could be different, and that's why you have to try to maintain a positive view. If you slip into seeing it all in negative terms, you risk becoming part of the problem rather than the solution.

    To some extent a kind of stoic attitude might help.Trying to do what's right even if others continue to think and act in negative ways. Not saying it's easy, but it's rewarding to make the effort.
     
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  4. Wu Li Heron

    Wu Li Heron Well-Known Member

    “Hope springs eternal in the human breast;
    Man never Is, but always To be blest.
    The soul, uneasy, and confin'd from home,
    Rests and expatiates in a life to come.”​
    Alexander Pope​
    The Pale Buddha is famous for saying, "The past is only a memory, the future is but a dream" but, without faith in our memories and dreams life as we know it would be impossible. Without faith in both awareness itself is impossible. You can view the situation as meaning we are all cursed to have faith in a nightmare, or that it is our choice to live our dreams if we can but accept that reality without dreams is just somebody's nightmare, while dreams without reality are someone else's fantasy.
     
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  5. Moonglow181

    Moonglow181 Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter

    I realized early on in life that man is a nasty animal, so i walk away from those...seek out the rare people....turn my back on the others and live in....as has been pointed out to me many times..."My own la la land...."...or my own world. I don't have much hope for the human species.......as a whole.....so I concentrate on animals....and people who deserve my love. that is how I do it.
     
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  6. Sora

    Sora Well-Known Member

    I have do my best to surround myself with those that I feel are good for me, for my life. Those who share the same vibes and viewpoints, or those who may not be exactly matched to them, but think just as deeply, and give me cause to spend time reconsidering my own opinions and feelings. The best growth I've had is when I'm forced to re-evaluate what I believe in.

    I think at the end of the day, it shouldn't be that hard to treat every person as an equal, to all just get along, and ensure we all have fair and equal treatment, despite any and all differences that we may have, we're all one. We should focus on treating each other well, and caring for the planet that has given birth to our very species, as well as the animals on it. Yet we continue to murder innocents, and deny rights to those who deserve equal treatment. I know we'll never have a perfect world, and this purgatory will likely continue to the end of time, and as much as I try to turn away from the intolerance and violence, it's hard to do so when you believe so strongly in equality and freedom, and are willing to do anything for it. The way that other humans treat each other and everything around them, it sometimes saps my desire for equal love and treatment, and makes me see us all as a virus, a cruel animal that's slaughtering its host, and thankfully is destroying itself.

    It's nice to know though that I'm not the only one thinking myself into a corner on this, since it occupies most of my time, and it's an issue a lot of people are afraid to tackle, mainly because there is no true answer. Just as most of you have said, the best thing to do is to keep being positive in yourself, caring for and loving others, the ones who deserve it, and standing against the vile things that drag you down, lest you become a part of it as well. And I really appreciate that stance. It's something that's really a part of who I am, yet I never really considered it in that way. One mast value the good things they have and can do, and do well for the things around them, make the best life they can for those who walk the path next to you.

    It just gets so hard when everyday we're inundated with this and that happening here and there, terrible things that fellow humans are doing, for utterly senseless reasons, and it saps any hope I'd like to have for the rest of our species at large. I know I have hope and joy in those close to me, as you all have said, this is important. I just wish I could feel that way towards everyone, because it can be pretty crushing sometimes
     
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  7. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    I feel the same way

    Taking some sort of action to make the world better helps. Of course we cant change the world, we cant force evil to become good but we can help make someone's path in life a little easier at least.

    Just do what you can while you're here and focus on the beauty more than the ugly
     
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  8. Sora

    Sora Well-Known Member

    That's what I work towards daily. Doing what I can for those that I'm able to help, and taking in the beauty that is present here. The ugly is sometimes just so overwhelming, it deafens. And I don't want to turn a blind eye to it, because ignoring the ugly evils in the world is just as bad as helping them win.
     
  9. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    I agree, it can be difficult remaining aware without letting it overwhelm you.
     
  10. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter

    'When fighting monsters, be careful you yourself do not become a monster' - Nietzsche.

    Not that I think anyone here is doing that. But I think it's a useful kind of maxim when you feel like lining up a bunch of politicians and bankers against a wall and giving the order to fire, as I admit I sometimes do in my darker moments.

    Anyway, to change tack slightly - I recently read a new book: 'How Soon is Now?' by Daniel Pinchbeck. In it he gives a nice analogy. When a caterpillar begins to be ready for metamorphosis, the cells in the body of the caterpillar start to break down inside the chrysalis, and this produces what are called 'imaginal cells'. These imaginal cells then reconstruct the dying caterpillar cells into the new butterfly.
    So in this world fast going down the drain, those of us who care and have some awareness have to be the imaginal cells for the future of humanity. Seems like an awesome goal, but it rings a bell for me.

    I think in the end that we just have to try to do whatever we can. Even in small ways.
     
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  11. autophobe2e

    autophobe2e Senior Member

    Both of these viewpoints are rooted in idealism. As in, the belief that humans have an essential nature that will always bubble to the surface, rather than idealism as in "hey everything can be rainbows". A more complete view would be to come at the problem from more of a materialistic perspective: humans have no innate essential nature, they are products of environment and circumstance.

    This isn't to say that humans have no responsibility or are trapped in their boxes with no hope of change, it just means that humans aren't "good" or "Evil". recognition of this fact can lead you towards taking positive steps to make the world a better place.

    in an "I hate people" mood?

    recognize that the behavior you despise is the result of factors beyond that individuals control. You may have opposing viewpoints, but you are not opposed to each other by an unchangeable natural code in your DNA, you just live in different environments. Try to empathise, and think about what practical steps you could make to improve people's circumstances and environments.

    In an "I love people " mood?

    Recognise that those actions that people do that you love, although often the result of individual acts of will, are also the result of environment and circumstance. If you see a positive situation, think about the circumstances that created that action and think about how it can be spread out into the world, how it can build and be nourished by practical changes to environment.


    Whether you think humans are great or evil, a belief in a concrete "nature" of humanity as a whole is reductive and paralyzing. A belief that humans are products of environment and have no essential nature can lead to social change and betterment.

    the only downside to this way of thinking is that it can lead to a kind of moral relativism that can, in itself, be paralysing. but cross that bridge when you come to it, eh? ;)

    If you ever feel down about your political ideals and the effectiveness of activism/possibilites of change, I reccomend the book "Hope in the dark" by Rebecca Solnit.
     
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  12. Ged

    Ged Rhetorical Juvenile.

    According to the philosopher and historian of ideas Michel Foucault,we all have a "fascism in our heads". Doesn't mean we are fascists per se. Internal dilemmas are very hard to live with. It's difficult to maintain an integral unified mind and World view,especially with so many outside forces trying to play on our sympathies. Learning to accept yourself is helpful,as well as taking charge of which channels you will allow into your system,your perceptual and super-sensible mind-system. Listen to your heart,and focus on the things you find truly nourish your soul..We also have a tendency to judge others harshly.So go easy on yourself and others.
     
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  13. Sora

    Sora Well-Known Member

    Imaginal cells, huh? Not something I'm familiar with, but honestly, such a thought fills me with hope, it is pretty awesome. The kind, caring ones with awareness to what it is to be human and to care and love being the future as things get bleak. This is really an outlook I can greatly appreciate. It's incredibly comforting.


    A very thought-provoking post. I do indeed see this issue as binary almost, but as you very well point it, it truly is so much more than that, and you're entirely fully right. I supposed I get so into this way of thought that I fail to consider the bigger picture, the more harmonious way of it. Not an us vs. them thing, but rather that we're products of different environments, different beliefs, some good, some bad, but it's all a point of view, even though these points of view may be incredibly strong. I've spent a long time feeling that human "nature" is a very concrete thing, but you do clearly demonstrate how reductive and paralyzing it is, and my very mental trap that I'm in with this does well to clearly exemplify your point. I'm a pretty empathetic person, but I see that perhaps I need to think even bigger, in a broader scale, since I also tend to be pretty impulsive with my opinions, ready to make a call, and that's that.

    Thank you for the book recommendation, I'll take a look at some point, that sounds like an excellent read, since I often do get down abut my beliefs and that possibilities of change. The title alone sounds wonderful.

    Another very worthwhile thought. I like the term, "fascism in our heads", because I get what's being said there, it's a powerful turn of phrase. I suppose I tend to just get so caught up in the noise and traffic of all of the issues that surround us, fail to look inward and remember myself, and get swept up in it. Next think I know, I fail to pay attention to what indeed nourishes my soul, and tend to judge harshly, far far more than I should. Thank you so much for your thoughts.
     
  14. themnax

    themnax Senior Member

    should is not in the univeres's vocabulary. tyrannies rise and fall. any man can be killed or intimidated.
    the universe can not. it will go on working just exactly the diversely patterned way that it does, no matter what,

    though we can and are fucking up our own planet, largely through ignorance and indifference. that is the eco-pocalypse.
    it will have a morning after, that may or may not include something resembling the human species.

    we do have several options we can choose however, and one of them, is to be considerate of all things. it won't even take all of us doing so.
    something may inherit the earth. it may even be smarter then we currently are.
     
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  15. Sora

    Sora Well-Known Member

    I can't deny that. The universe has its own way, whatever way that is, it cares little for what should be, it just does it, and we have don't have too many choices in the matter, you are right, there will indeed be a morning after, and perhaps that morning is a better morning than any that came before it
     
  16. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member

    The time will come when you see we're all one,​
    And life flows on within you and without you.​

    George Harrison​
    So don't worry about it.
     
  17. Ajay0

    Ajay0 Guest

    The way I see it, you have an image of good or an idealistic world and desire greatly to materialise it. But your understanding of the facts makes you skeptical and pessimistic of the future. This conflict between ideals and reality is embittering your mind and making it negative and depressed.

    Here, it is your desire to materialise your ideals that is the issue, and its frustration is what is the cause of your negativity. And as a result of your negativity, you might even fail or procrastinate in your duties to the environment or humanity or the world, which can result in greater regression as well.

    So don't follow your desires and become emotionally involved with it. Just pursue it as a duty as taught by Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita., without desiring for the results and focus on doing the best job you can do under the circumstances. This can create enthusiasm and positivity instead of demoralisation and negativity.

    Desire, whether to create inordinate wealth by cutting trees or killing endangered tigers for expensive tigerskins, or for the realization of ideals due to the greed of doing good, are all of the same category as it pulls man away from his natural state of thoughtless awareness or love, imho.

    As Eckhart Tolle puts it, "Are you polluting the world or cleaning up the mess? You are responsible for your inner space; nobody else is, just as you are responsible for the planet. As within, so without: If humans clear inner pollution, then they will also cease to create outer pollution."
     

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