We are more like animals than we think

Discussion in 'Hinduism' started by Jedi, Apr 8, 2007.

  1. Jedi

    Jedi Self Banned

    I think we operate in a mechanical life, we are not really conscious of what we do. I had some time to think about this during this week... for it is my spring break...when I examined myself and others I realized that it seems as if there is no conscious choice when we do even things we like to do.

    People are constantly at the mercy of their immediate desires, one desire after the other, these come barging in and they keep fulfilling them, finally all their energy goes out and they go to sleep. Wake up in the morning and exactly the same things happen.

    People who have jobs, their only motivation is money, which comes back to this idea that money helps get them food, shelter and security. When the work they have to do at their job is over, they simply go back to their desire fulfilling mode.
    Some people say that they like their jobs, but it is simply because they have been doing it for such a long time that they have to like it.

    There is no humanitarian consciousness in people because it takes them away from their shell of immediate desires. To do something voluntarily is something that takes most people away from their shell that ensures them a sense of security and their dopamine binge.

    As a matter of fact, doing anything other than what they usually do or are taught by the desire fulfilling mode on a larger scale of society , leads to discomfort.
    You want to try it? Go outside and sit in public on the floor, in a lotus position and start meditating, you will feel such embarrassment that you can't seem to simply think of nothing else ,except that embarrassment.
  2. jedi..we're forced to act because of our past "karma"...our total structure as individual materially-bodied beings acting through the mind, intelligence, and five senses.

    The vast majority of human beings never come even to this rudimentary understanding and truly do walk through life in a semi-robotic state, just living off their store of accumulated mostly-good (hopefully) reactions from past lives. When some thing fortunate happens, they praise God; when something very unfortunate happens, they have no clue as to the cause and often lose faith in a higher power..."how could God allow this to happen???".

    Stepping of life patterns out is difficult, especially if life is comfortable, as mine is. It's a daily challenge just simply to lend someone a hand, give charitably, or openly express one's affiliation with a spiritual philosophy that challenges the prevailing ones...try walking around in public with a japa-bead bag, chanting Hare Krishna audibly.

    A good aspect...I'm retired, don't have to please people anymore, and now can be as "eccentric" as I want! This is humbling, by way of illustrating my pride and related shortcomings... Blessed are those who dare to be different, no matter what the circumstances!
  3. Fallout55

    Fallout55 Banned

    Were are bound by our instincts to do certain things, I think were closer to mold than animals though.
  4. Archemetis

    Archemetis Senior Member

    im not sure how much like animals we are....it takes a certin level of conciousness to even be an animal. in many ways we're not as smart as animals (collectivly)

    we no longer know how to live naturally with the earth....we dont even know how to survive anymore. also look at our diet, (most peoples) our diet is not based on what is healthy but what tastes good, and really we are eating poison. not very smart, poisoning our food with pesticides and preservatives and artifitial ingredients.
    so we're not very succesful animals....and our divine spark that gives us the potential to be infinate, is taken for granted and never nurtured...so we're not very succesful gods either. we're a strange breed for sure.
  5. StayLoose1011

    StayLoose1011 Senior Member

    We are very much like animals, and I agree with a lot of what you said. However, I think that your view is a little grim. I think a lot of people try to do good for others. They might not be doing as much good as they think, and maybe their efforts are at times misguided, but intentions are often good. But the point does hold that life, for most people, is simply satisfying one desire after another, often illogical and harmful ones at that.
  6. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    We are animals, and contrary to what you say, the most succesful animal spieces on the planet, dominating just about everything else.

    As I say, we are animals - but animals with the capacity for abstract symbol making and logical thought. Animals that can go beyond their purely instinctual nature.
    Because of the neat design of the human form we are also less restricted in our field of action than other animals. We are more capable of adapting to change.

    Given time, the current craze for unhealthy foods and chemical pesticides will probably cease due to pressure on the environment.

    If we didn't know how to survive anymore, we'd all be dead. I've been hearing this since the 70's and we're still here.
  7. niranjan

    niranjan Member

    And whats wrong with animals by the way! Some of my best friends were animals and I had a good time with them.

    The Red Indians consider animals as their brothers , who too will go to heaven.

    Also according to Advaita Vedanta, God is present in animals as well, though its manifestation is in a lower degree compared to human beings.

    Hence I believe animals should be revered and treated well, and they have every right to live and enjoy their life.
  8. Some of my current best friends are animals.

    Dvaita-vedanta also accounts for animals...they are simply independent eternal souls, jivas like us, with different types of bodies, intelligence, and sense perception. Supposedly they are less-aware in a spiritual sense than human beings, but seeing the mess we've made of things, and knowing some of the people that I do, I'm inclined to doubt that at times.
  9. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    Yes - I agree. One thing I always liked about Francis of Assisi was his regarding animals as his brothers and sisters, and even on occaision preaching to them.
    (which incidentally, contradicts the catholic doctrine that animals have no soul)
  10. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    Sri Aurobindo says it is a question of what he calls 'instrumentation'.
    The spirit in an animal has a more limited instrument than the human being. The 'instrument' is the form or level of embodiment. The body, vital and mind are the usual instrumentation of the human being.
    Sri A speaks of a possible further stage of evolution where the current limited mental capacity of humans will be suplanted by the emergence of what he terms 'supermind' - something which is by definition above mental conception, but which would represent a new and highr level of instrumentation. The supramental being would be as far above humans as we are above the earthworm.
  11. Jedi

    Jedi Self Banned

    No, the supreme lord is equally within animals as he is in us. We are actually no different from animals on the level of spirit. We are souls, and animals are souls... there is no "animal soul" and there is no "human soul", there is just "soul", and the lord who dwells within these souls is obviously accounted by Advaita , as you know.
    Now,The problem is that we are certainly not equal on the bodily level, in that we live differently from animals, thats it. But there are things like "desire" that animals can't control... they are ruled by these things. Hence, if we are also ruled by these desires then we are also closer to animals than to the divine being... who is self satisfied, who is not ruled by any desire, yes?

    There is nothing intrinsicly wrong with being an animal, there is nothing intrinsicly wrong with anything for that matter. However, from what I have come to realize, some things cause just pain and suffering... and we call these things "Sin". The more animal we are, the more we are bound by things that make us suffer, and we are more "sinful". The more we go toward God, the more happy we become , the more "virtuous" we are...
  12. niranjan

    niranjan Member

    Well, animals don't commit genocide like Mao, Stalin , Hitler,Pol Pot and Khomeini had done. (with the Bahais)
    Animals only hunt other animals and kill them to appease their hunger. After that they do not bother about killing other animals. Also here we are talking about the carnivorous animals and not about the herbivores animals.
    Also there are clearly qualities like affection and loyalty among dogs, dolphins and horses and other animals acquainted with human beings.

    So I think it is improper to set animal behaviour as the standard for sin.

    Sin according to the Vedanta is nothing but error . And we make errors due to ignorance.

    Hence the antidote for sin is clearly wisdom and enlightenment. Remove the cause, which is ignorance, and the effect , which is sin or error , is automatically removed.
  13. Jedi

    Jedi Self Banned

    Mr./Miss Niranjan, the point I am trying to make is that Animals have less of a choice when it comes to being slaves to their immediate desires. This is sin... while some human beings are lucky enough to have a choice. Ofcourse, this is my humble opinion, and really I don't know much about Hindu scriptures. So, if you don't agree to this, please feel free not to agree.
  14. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    Animals don't 'sin' when they follow their instinct or 'desire'.
    They have no choice. All but the lowest types of human beings do have choice - at least up to a point.
    You don't need religion to see this - ethics by itself is based entirely on this principle.
    The difference between the pure philanthropist who does good just for it's own sake and the religious do-gooder, is that the latter is actually seeking some kind of reward for being good.
    Myself I take a stoic view - we should do what good we can, according to how we understand 'good', and do it 'just because' - not because we think it will lead us to heaven or enlightenment.

    Also, doing good in the human world is often a matter of enlightened self interest. A sensible person sees that true and complete happiness and satisfaction can come only when everyone is happy.
  15. Jedi

    Jedi Self Banned

    It is said that Desires that later on hurt us are what we call "sins". Animal desires do hurt them , because they put them in this body consciousness, and they cannot get out of it.
  16. BlackBillBlake

    BlackBillBlake Hip Forums Supporter HipForums Supporter

    Even if that is true, I doubt very much that animals have any sense of being 'trapped' in a body. Also, would the enactment of desires not have to preceed incarnation in an animal form for it to 'put them in this body'? And once in it, they have no choice but to continue to seek to gratify their 'desires', thus preparing their next 'trap'.

    Animals have no choice but to follow their instinct, and personally, I find the idea that they will be 'entapped' by so doing somewhat absurd.
  17. Jedi

    Jedi Self Banned

    See, they are already entrapped , just as we are entrapped. They are suffering and we are suffering, but they don't have the capacity to get out of it. We do... when we don't use what we have...which is awareness of our condition and if we don't try to develop ourselves, we are simply like animals. That is the point...

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