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Round 2. Coven v Semperfortis: Can't Laugh Until You Cry?

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posted on Mar, 2 2008 @ 02:03 AM
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The topic for this debate is "Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Coven will be arguing the pro position and will open the debate.
Semperfortis will argue the con position.

Each debater will have one opening statement each. This will be followed by 3 alternating replies each. There will then be one closing statement each and no rebuttal.


There are no limits on the length of posts, but you may only use 1 post per turn.

Editing is strictly forbidden. For reasons of time, mod edits should not be expected except in critical situations


Opening and closing statements must not contain any images and must have no more than 3 references.

Excluding both the opening and closing statements, only two images and no more than 5 references can be included for each post. Each invidual post may contain up to 10 sentences of external source material, totaled from all external sources.
Links to multiple pages within a single domain count as 1 reference but there is a maximum of 3 individual links per reference, then further links from that domain count as a new reference. Excess quotes and excess links will be removed before judging.


The Socratic Debate Rule is in effect. Each debater may ask up to 5 questions in each post, except for in closing statements- no questions are permitted in closing statements. These questions should be clearly labeled as "Question 1, Question 2, etc.
When asked a question, a debater must give a straight forward answer in his next post. Explanations and qualifications to an answer are acceptable, but must be preceeded by a direct answer.

A new time limit policy is in effect
Each debate must post within 24 hours of the timestamp on the last post. If your opponent is late, you may post immediately without waiting for an announcement of turn forfeiture. If you are late, you may post late, unless your opponent has already posted.

Each debater is entitled to one extention of 24 hours. The request should be posted in this thread and is automatically granted- the 24 hour extention begins at the expiration of the previous deadline, not at the time of the extention request.

In the unlikely event that tardiness results in simultaneous posting by both debaters, the late post will be deleted unless it appears in its proper order in the thread.


Judging will be done by a panel of anonymous judges. After each debate is completed it will be locked and the judges will begin making their decision. One of the debate forum moderators will then make a final post announcing the winner.




posted on Mar, 2 2008 @ 06:57 PM
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Our topic of debate is "humans are pyschologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain" I will be validating the truth behind that statement.


Opening Argument:

Since the dawn of mankind humans have dealt with unhappiness and pain. Be it hunting and gathering, and failing; or losing our significant other to a genetically superior human. Through the ages one fact has stood true about mankind, we are "psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

The annals of human history prove this statement to be a fact. Some of the greatest artists/performers of human culture based their works on both great joys and great sadnesses. To fully understand this one must embrace the concept of yin and yang or as wikipedia describes it:

"The dual concepts of yin and yang (or heaven and earth) describe two primal opposing but complementary principles or cosmic forces said to be found in all non-static objects and processes in the universe. This seemingly paradoxical concept is the cornerstone of most branches of Chinese philosophy, as well as traditional Chinese medicine."

while one may question this philosophy it has been proven time and time again. It only goes to validate my argument that "Humans are pyschologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain". You see dear reader, our psyche cannot comprehend a happiness without unhappiness, or joys without pains. Our judgments are based on perceptions and without a counter to the positive reactions, we would have no basis for the existence of positive/negative correlations.

As the philosophical thinkers of the X-generation, Beavis and Butthead, once stated about a video that 'sucks' while not changing the channel; Beavis states something along the lines of "why can't everything be cool?", to which Butthead replies "because then we won't know what sucks". While this is very humorous (at least to me
) there is extreme validity to this statement. One cannot perceive 'a good thing' without 'a bad thing' being a part of their previous experiences.

Man does DESIRE to have a pain free life full of happiness, but we have no valid basis for this DESIRE. while a human goes through the course of their life, no matter what successes they may achieve they do realize that their past pain, and unhappiness (or suffering) are one of the reasons they were driven to succeed. A man can be the richest, most successful man in the world; but he tends to still be unhappy with many aspects of his life. This process is where the age old adage "money can't buy you happiness" comes from. While we can achieve happiness and pain free moments during the majority of our lives, we still have to work through the tests of free-will and life known as unhappiness and pain.

To give a brief example, say a man has a family, but doesn't have the income to truly support his family. He is unhappy at that time. So to seek resolution to his unhappiness he starts selling drugs to people he knows as a form of secondary income. He is able to provide more for his family because of this newfound income. He begins to feel HAPPY again. Then he is caught selling drugs, and has to go to prison for it. He is of course unhappy again, with himself for his mistake, and with his life because he has brought more problems on himself. He is also feeling the pain of not seeing his children and wife on a daily basis. The Man eventually gets out of Prison, gets back to his family, and is happy once again. A few years down the line he is unhappy again because he has to work longer hours, doing hard labor (due to his conviction), which leads him back down the path of not seeing his family as much, which in turn leads him to become unhappy again.

There are a Million different examples along these lines, and with such an abundance of these examples it is impossible to argue that "humans are NOT pyschologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain". Pain is the feeling that lets us truly know when we have a reason for Joy. Unhappiness is the emotion that lets us truly know when we have a reason for happiness. These are integral parts of the human pysche, that will not change until we have evolved ourselves beyond the level of truly being considered human.

Unhappiness and Pain are a KEY part of human nature. Without these negatives we can no longer call ourselves "Human", as we have no counterbalance to base happiness and joy on. We must admit to ourselves that Pain and Unhappiness are not bad things, but steps that we must experience to grow (both Mentally, and emotionally) into strong successful humans. Without these we have no true basis for the counterbalances to these emotions of Joy and happiness.

In other words... Without Pain, we cannot know Joy... Without sadness, we cannot know happiness. We cannot perceive what the positives are without the negatives to prove what truly makes us happy or joyous.

with that I pass the floor to our current debate champion Semper.



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 01:01 AM
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Tournament Round 2

Coven vs. Semperfortis

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Semper’s Opening:

First let me thank our beloved debate Forum Moderator, TheVagabond, without whom none of this would be possible and I would not know the joy of this forum. Also thanks goes out to my esteemed opponent for agreeing to match wits with me in this arena. Good luck.

Proposition:

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

During this debate I will reference Humans, Man and Mankind as all of humanity inclusive of both male and female.

In examining this topic, we immediately ask ourselves; has anyone historically ever been free of the negatives of life? Will there come a time when some of us or all of us will exist in such a way?
These concepts are fascinating, yet not truly relevant to this debate. The premise is that we are Not Psychologically Capable of functioning in an existence completely free from unhappiness and pain.

I submit to you that happiness in all of its many forms is the ultimate goal of all mankind. As this is a given in our psychological makeup, how can we be psychologically incapable of experiencing our greatest desire? The premise is not logical.

Yet; what is happiness and what produces a life without pain?

Success
Power
Money
Love
Faith
Conflict

The answer to what makes us happy is as diverse and complicated as the human race. We all want different things; we all pursue different goals; we all have different desires. To say with conviction that no one has ever been happy or free of pain is to assume knowledge of all Man’s desires, strengths and weaknesses; to know the history of all the billions of people that have lived and died throughout history.

Who is to say that some people have not lived completely free from unhappiness and pain, and lived perfectly wonderful lives?

Conflict makes some people happy; others have an aversion to any conflict in their lives at all.
Some may feel pain at breaking up with a girlfriend; others revel in the prospect of seeking a new partner.
As horrible as war may be to most of us, there are those individuals that only ever experience joy in combat.

So as we see, there are as many forms of happiness as there are people in the world

During this debate my opponent will undoubtedly reference many different scenarios where man has found himself in unhappy or painful situations. Yet does this prove that Man is psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence free from such?

I am not going to waste your time in citing example after example of man’s ability to be happy and free from pain.
I submit to you that we have all had times in our lives that were completely free from pain and we were completely happy. The vast majority of us made it through those times with no psychological trauma or damage at all. I would also postulate that those times were in fact, a positive influence on our psyche.

My opponent is tasked with proving that man is psychologically incapable of functioning in such an existence, not simply attempting to show that no such existence has ever occurred. During this debate I ask that you, the readers, keep this in mind.

My esteemed opponent will no doubt reference the age old premise of “No light without the darkness”, “No pleasure without pain” postulate; keep in mind that even if you accept these as basic truths, they in no way prove or validate man’s psychological ability to live with out unhappiness and pain.

During this debate I will give you many examples of what it is that makes Man happy. I will show you that psychologically there is no impassable barrier to experiencing happiness, no insurmountable barrier to a life without psychological pain.

I will also walk with you through Mankind’s historical search for such a life; we will explore the psychological and physiological rewards man feels upon achieving happiness and existing without pain.

We are going to look at Freud, Jung, Kaminski and other eminent Psychiatrists and their theories of the human psyche.

We will look at the damage unhappiness and pain can cause to our psyche, and the positive results of feeling happy and free of pain; and the healthy, natural human desire to seek out happiness and avoid pain.

I will ultimately show you where the human psyche is predisposed to seek happiness and avoid pain. This concept will validate the proposition that we are in fact completely capable of existing in an environment free from unhappiness and pain.

Socratic Question #1
Can you state FACTUALLY that NO human being, throughout all of human history, has ever lived completely happy and free of pain?

Socratic Question #2
Was this a Freudian Slip?

Original Quote by Coven:
and with such an abundance of these examples it is impossible to argue that "humans are NOT pyschologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".


Summation:

Happiness is the ultimate goal of all mankind. What form that happiness takes, is not a subject for debate at this time. To imagine that human beings are incapable of psychologically, or otherwise, functioning or existing in an atmosphere of complete happiness, is to disregard the makeup of the human psychology and our historical and ongoing search for just such a life.

All of us have existed for periods of time in our lives completely happy and completely free from pain. This period of time in our lives caused us no psychological trauma. This is proof that my opponent’s premise can not be correct.

In point of fact, quite the opposite proves to be true. Too much unhappiness, too much pain will ultimately destroy the strongest among us.

Finally as you read this debate, remember every once in awhile, the times in your life when you were completely happy and free from pain. For me it was on the farm in West Virginia as a child. Walking the woods and wading in the streams. Long weekends of riding the horses and exploring the hollows; the smell of fresh cut hay and my Grannies Pinto Beans and Taters.

I can attest to you that I was not only NOT damaged by those times, they have remained my most cherished memories and have helped to pull me from slumps that I have experienced in my later years; slumps that if allowed to continue, could have caused me very real and significant psychological damage.

Those times were psychologically healthier for me and I am positive that as you consider this and this debate unfolds you will agree that;

"Humans are NOT psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Thank you,

Semper



posted on Mar, 3 2008 @ 11:06 PM
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hate to do it guys and gals but I need a 24 hour extension. I won't be finishing up my work for at least a few more hours...

Will be posting ASAP...


Thanks!


Coven



posted on Mar, 5 2008 @ 12:19 AM
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Firstly I thank you Semper (and of Course The Vagabond)
for allowing me the challenge of a good debate. Though I'm new to the Debates It is always nice to have such a esteemed challenge.

Response 1:



In examining this topic, we immediately ask ourselves; has anyone historically ever been free of the negatives of life? Will there come a time when some of us or all of us will exist in such a way?

These concepts are fascinating, yet not truly relevant to this debate. The premise is that we are Not Psychologically Capable of functioning in an existence completely free from unhappiness and pain.


While I agree with my opponent on the emboldened remark above (my emphasis)I disagree that unhappiness and pain are irrelevant to this debate as these little incidents occur they have small effects on our psychological development. A person learns and grows through these experiences. Without pain, (for example a broken heart) one cannot learn many of life's important lessons(letting go and moving on). As I stated in my opening there are limitless examples of this.

What gives one happiness is only relevant in the aspect of my Previous statements on the Yin and Yang. One truly must have a balance of both positive and negative in their life. While I was utilizing a bit of humor (the Beavis and Butthead comment) the point I was making is the crux of the debate.

Without perceptions of pain one cannot feel happiness, without feeling hurt (romantic wise) on cannot truly appreciate the good romances. Our psyche works on a balance of perceptions and judgments. it is a form of Associative Functioning.

I personally do not believe there is a person alive who has lived an pain-free and happy life, In WHOLE of course. Of course people can and do have good happy lives. however, Everyone has experienced Mental Pain, and Times of Unhappiness and SOME POINT. and We grow and LEARN as humans from it. Without knowledge of the bad, we cannot know what is TRULY good.

While my opponent claims this is not provable, all one has to do is examine the world around them. Philosophers through the ages have known this to be true. How did the know? By simply observing. When discussing Psychology one must keep in mind their are two major fields of Psychology... Scientific Study and Applied Study. As one can see by reading this link Applied Psychology is a form of Philosophical Science.



We are going to look at Freud, Jung, Kaminski and other eminent Psychiatrists and their theories of the human psyche.

We will look at the damage unhappiness and pain can cause to our psyche, and the positive results of feeling happy and free of pain; and the healthy, natural human desire to seek out happiness and avoid pain.


All of the Psychiatrists my opponent intends to quote from will also agree that
constant pain and unhappiness are the true damaging agent of our psyche; but a life completely void of these would be impossible.



Socratic Question #1
Can you state FACTUALLY that NO human being, throughout all of human history, has ever lived completely happy and free of pain?


Answer 1:
I believe that 1000's of years of Philosophical study and research that agree with the point I am making would count as valid enough evidence.
Remember the Yin and Yang quote


originally posted by coven"The dual concepts of yin and yang (or heaven and earth) describe two primal opposing but complementary principles or cosmic forces said to be found in all non-static objects and processes in the universe. This seemingly paradoxical concept is the cornerstone of most branches of Chinese philosophy, as well as traditional Chinese medicine."
(Wikipedia Link (yin-yang)

Socratic Question #2
Was this a Freudian Slip?


Original Quote by Coven:
and with such an abundance of these examples it is impossible to argue that humans are NOT pyschologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain


Answer 2:
Not at all. Emphasis on the emboldened part.

While we can all strive for happiness what helps us to realize this happiness? Happy memories? Of Course! Bad memories? Of Course! We learn from pain and unhappiness. Lessons we would never learn without these occurrences.



Too much unhappiness, too much pain will ultimately destroy the strongest among us.


I agree.

Dear readers, Please also remember those bad moments in your life and the many ways/things you have grown/learned from them.

With that I concede to floor to my respected opponent Semperfortis!






[edit on 5-3-2008 by The Vagabond]



posted on Mar, 5 2008 @ 04:48 AM
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Tournament Round 2

Coven vs. Semperfortis

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Semper’s Reply #1

Rebuttal:


while one may question this philosophy it has been proven time and time again


Could you please provide us with the “proof” you mention in regards to this philosophy? Where has it been proven and by whom?


Our judgments are based on perceptions


It has always been my understanding that judgment is based on many factors, to include: Environment, Culture, Societal Framework and Family Value Placement.


One cannot perceive 'a good thing' without 'a bad thing' being a part of their previous experiences


Can you please show your psychological basis for this presumption? I do understand that it is a colloquial expression, but Bevis and Butthead aside, I was under the impression we were engaged in a scientific debate in regards to a “psychological” debate topic.


no matter what successes they may achieve they do realize that their past pain, and unhappiness (or suffering) are one of the reasons they were driven to succeed.


So it is your contention that pain and unhappiness are the motivators for human success?

This concept is completely false in body and premise. Man’s motivation to excel, to succeed, is absolutely predicated by the quest for happiness and a pain free existence. This is a psychological standard accepted by all of the psychological community without exception.

Aristotle stated that:

Humans have an insatiable need to achieve goodness and eventual happiness

Direct Essays

Ed Diener,
ie. Dr Happy noted that:

"Why is happiness linked to successful outcomes? We propose that this is not merely because success leads to happiness, but because positive affect engenders success."

History of Happiness


There are a Million different examples along these lines


Your examples do not PROVE that Man is psychologically incapable of functioning in an atmosphere free from unhappiness and pain; they simply illustrate that many people don’t. That is not the debate my esteemed opponent.


Pain is the feeling that lets us truly know when we have a reason for Joy


Does not a child feel joy in the embrace of their Mother; having never felt pain or anguish?

While it is true that some emotions are connected and routinely lead to other emotions, this concept is not exclusive and concrete. Many emotions such as joy are achieved independent of others.


Pain and Unhappiness are not bad things, but steps that we must experience to grow (both Mentally, and emotionally) into strong successful humans.


While I, and I believe almost everyone, would argue that most times pain and unhappiness are indeed “bad things”, I will submit the concept of learning is valid to a degree. However this in no way proves or supports the idea that man can not psychologically function without them.
Hence, no bearing on the debate.


I disagree that unhappiness and pain are irrelevant to this debate as these little incidents occur they have small effects on our psychological development.


Happiness and pain are only relevant my valued opponent, in the context of your ability to prove that Man is psychologically incapable of functioning in an atmosphere devoid of them. As to whether or not millions currently suffer these maladies is a given; it is their basic instinctual drive toward a life free from unhappiness and pain that proves they could function in an existence completely free from unhappiness and pain.


One truly must have a balance of both positive and negative in their life.


Could you please elaborate and provide some proof as to this statement? It would assist the readers if you could explain this concept in reference to those people that obtain happiness in situations that would traditionally make the majority of Mankind unhappy, such as those that revel in war, personal conflict, extreme endeavors etc.


I personally do not believe there is a person alive who has lived an pain-free and happy life, In WHOLE of course.


It is fine that you personally believe this, can you prove it? Can you completely negate any possibility, in all the billions and billions of souls that have lived, that ONE person has lived completely free from unhappiness and pain? Of course you can not. It still returns to the ideological concept of what we naturally and instinctually pursue; a life free from unhappiness and pain.


All of the Psychiatrists my opponent intends to quote from will also agree that
constant pain and unhappiness are the true damaging agent of our psyche; but a life completely void of these would be impossible.


Having read extensively and studied as part of my University Curriculum, the work of these individuals, I have never read this in their studies. Perhaps you would like to post some substantiating evidence of this statement of yours.


I believe that 1000's of years of Philosophical study and research that agree with the point I am making would count as valid enough evidence.
Remember the Yin and Yang quote


That did NOT answer this question:


Original Post by Semperfortis:
Socratic Question #1
Can you state FACTUALLY that NO human being, throughout all of human history, has ever lived completely happy and free of pain?



Dear readers, Please also remember those bad moments in your life and the many ways/things you have grown/learned from them.


Fine, we learn from them, yet we could most assuredly function psychologically without them.

Socratic Question #1:
Reference:

Coven Stated:
Man does DESIRE to have a pain free life full of happiness, but we have no valid basis for this DESIRE.


How can man have a desire as fundamental as happiness with no valid basis for that desire?

Socratic Question #2

Do you consider man’s pursuit of happiness and a pain free existence to be instinctual or learned behavior?

Summation:

While the concept of pleasure and pain complimenting each other is a wonderful basis for poetry and songs, it has little bearing on the nature of this debate. In fact Man has the propensity and the natural ability to experience and feel both pleasure and pain, yet which does man pursue as a natural course of his existence? Why pleasure, happiness and a life free from pain of course.

As readers of this debate, ask yourselves this: Why would Man instinctively and naturally pursue something that once achieved, he could not function with? He would not.

Man has a natural and instinctive aversion to pain and unhappiness, and an identically powerful attraction to pleasure and happiness. Is it fair to say that some seek out those things which cause them pain? Absolutely, but they are not the vast majority and without exception their desires are unhealthy and destructive. A healthy and constructive life is constantly seeking to be free from unhappiness and pain.

No, in point of fact, Man desires a life full of happiness and free from pain because he is instinctively psychologically prepared to function and revel in such an existence. I submit to you that being free from unhappiness and pain is the natural state of Man and the condition humans are most productive and accomplished in. Being unhappy or in a state of pain is counter productive to positive human desires to succeed and excel.

My opponent’s use of the word “suffering” is in and of itself substantial indication of the proof of my argument. We, as humans, do not pursue or desire suffering as a natural extension of our psychology. We do pursue and desire a life free from unhappiness, devoid of pain and suffering.

Again, I reiterate; it is our natural and instinctual pursuit of a life free from unhappiness and pain that proves:

"Humans are NOT psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Thank you,

Semper



posted on Mar, 6 2008 @ 02:28 AM
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*deep Breath*


Response 2:


semperfortis
Could you please provide us with the “proof” you mention in regards to this philosophy? Where has it been proven and by whom?


I would be glad to. Nietzsche is where the infamous quote (interpreted in a popular rap song which happens to be my signature
)


"What does not kill me, makes me stronger."

as well as...
"Did you ever say yes to a pleasure?
Oh my friends, then you also said yes to all pain.
All things are linked, entwined, in love with one another."


Philosophy of Pain



It has always been my understanding that judgment is based on many factors, to include: Environment, Culture, Societal Framework and Family Value Placement.


I'm sure you realize that Environmental, Cultural, an Societal basis' of judgment are all based on ones personal perception as well as outside influences.(i.e. the community, religious organizations, parental influence)



Can you please show your psychological basis for this presumption?



psychologytoday.com




Buddhism and psychoanalysis teach us that the very ways we seek happiness actually block us from finding it. Our first mistake is in trying to wipe out all sources of displeasure and search for a perennial state of well-being


from link.

I do not contend that pain and unhappiness are motivators of success. However I do claim that they influence us to do our best, by striving for better, happier experiences. Once again, I do believe that too much pain and unhappiness is a negative on the human psyche.

WE ARE programmed at our psychological core to be affected in a positive manner by many situations(even if in the long run), that at the time are highly negative :i.e. death of a parent during teen years, and learning how to provide for and take care of the family; which leads to success in business (due to hard work) later in life...



Does not a child feel joy in the embrace of their Mother; having never felt pain or anguish?


During those young years, yes... but eventually, when one begins to develop responsibilities and make ones own decisions in life, pain, and unhappiness will have a constant effect on our life. Many will find happiness and a fairly pain free life, one must still feel some pains, to learn some lessons.




Could you please elaborate and provide some proof as to this statement?



Yin (dark) and yang (light) are descriptions of complementary opposites as well as absolutes. Any yin/yang duality can be viewed from another perspective. All forces in nature can be seen as existing in yin or yang states, and the two produce constant movement/force of the universe.


from the yin-yang wiki (link on first reply.)



such as those that revel in war, personal conflict, extreme endeavors


I personally believe the people you described here are completing a karmatic cycle that will lead them on a path that will only bring them more pain and unhappiness. If you will read the yin-yang link you will see this ancient Chinese philosophy is based off of a balance of good and evil, heaven and earth, dark and light... without one you cannot have the other.



Socratic Question 1:

what do you mean by "extreme endeavors"? (i could just be dumb... but I don't get it.
)



That did NOT answer this question:


Sorry if my previous answer was not clear enough. put a "Yes." in front of it.



Socratic Question #1:
Reference:


Coven Stated:
Man does DESIRE to have a pain free life full of happiness, but we have no valid basis for this DESIRE.


How can man have a desire as fundamental as happiness with no valid basis for that desire?


Man's desire for happiness is fed by unhappy experiences. Without them man cannot grow and realize true happiness.






Socratic Question #2
Do you consider man’s pursuit of happiness and a pain free existence to be instinctual or learned behavior?


both. I believe man is born with a drive to avoid pain, and achieve happiness... But as one ages one learns that some pain and unhappiness is necessary in life to become happy by our personal perceptions of the term.



Why would Man instinctively and naturally pursue something that once achieved, he could not function with?


I have never stated man could not function within a state of happiness, or free of pain. I have clearly stated that this is a desire of man. But to become truly happy, one must face ones pains (deaths, lost relationships, failures in business/work, failing that one test you studied so hard for...) to learn and realize what is truly valuable, and meaningful to them. One can ALWAYS Achieve happiness, but to become PSYCHOLOGICALLY happy with oneself one eventually must experience these pains, and grow to become a better person because of them.




We, as humans, do not pursue or desire suffering as a natural extension of our psychology. We do pursue and desire a life free from unhappiness, devoid of pain and suffering.


of course not. Few rational people would.


Dear reader, a portion of evidence has been laid out before you, and I hope you will read the pages in full. The Chinese have believed in the yin-yang for 1000's of years. It is considered a Philosophical Ideal. To state this is not philosophy when it clearly is is ludicrous.

One would assume the cornerstone of all modern sciences would have some validity in a 'scientific debate'.


actually... I did find an example of people who don't feel pain..

It's only occurs in a rare genetic defect. But then again the article describes all of the mental suffering they go through not being able to feel pain.
Boy's who couldn't feel any pain.

However... I won't concede the debate on a genetic anamoly .


I believe I have given enough evidence to clearly show that Pain and Unhappiness are necessary to the psyche of mankind.

without these experiences we cannot grow into a successful and truly happy person.

Socratic question 2:
Can you provide one example of a person who has lived a life completely free of pain and unhappiness?

Socratic question 3:
Can you name any Extreme change of society that occurred with absolutely no violence or suffering?

Socratic question 4 &5 :
Have you personally experienced (not to get to deep, not details, just yes or no will do fine) a moment of great sadness or pain that you did grow and learn something from? if so, would you have learned that lesson without the particular moment occurring?




I thank my worthy opponent for the amazing debate and

I concede the floor back to Semperfortis...



posted on Mar, 6 2008 @ 06:17 PM
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Tournament Round 2

Coven vs. Semperfortis

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Semper’s Reply #2

Rebuttal:


I would be glad to. Nietzsche is where the infamous quote (interpreted in a popular rap song which happens to be my signature


Didn’t this come from Conan?

Anyway:

Are you positive you want to base a scientific debate on quotes from a Philologist and Philosopher and a Rap song?
Can you please clarify what Nietzsche’s professional qualifications or the author of the Rap song are that would indicate they know anymore about the debate topic than I do.


I'm sure you realize that Environmental, Cultural, an Societal basis' of judgment are all based on ones personal perception as well as outside influences.(i.e. the community, religious organizations, parental influence)


The circle goes both ways. A person’s personal perceptions are learned and developed due to his surroundings, culture and environment. The many ways we perceive things as individuals, are conclusive proof that it is our environment that influences this, not some Yin Yang Chinese mystic mumbo jumbo.

The psychology of Man’s search for happiness and a life free from pain is perhaps one of the most studied human relationships with his surroundings. The fact that we are instinctually led toward a life free from unhappiness and pain is direct indication and evidence that our lives would be full and rich in such an environment.

As for your link to Psychology Today

From your own source:


it sees the pursuit of happiness as our life goal and teaches techniques of mental development to achieve it. To the Dalai Lama, "the purpose of life is to be happy."

as the Dalai Lama always emphasizes, happiness is not a hobby, nor is it a trivial pursuit. It is a fundamental drive as basic as those of sex or aggression


As you can clearly see, your own link supports the idea that a life free from unhappiness and pain, is “fundamental” and a pursuit worthy of human endeavor.


I do not contend that pain and unhappiness are motivators of success.


Oh really?


Direct quote from Coven:
no matter what successes they may achieve they do realize that their past pain, and unhappiness (or suffering) are one of the reasons they were driven to succeed.


You really have to decide on a direction here, it is confusing when you contradict yourself my friend.


WE ARE programmed at our psychological core to be affected in a positive manner by many situations


My point exactly!!!! We are programmed to not only be psychologically capable of functioning, but to excel and grow in an environment free from unhappiness and pain.


Many will find happiness and a fairly pain free life


Again, exactly!

So you support the idea that:

"Humans are psychologically capable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain"


from the yin-yang wiki


First: Wiki is an unreliable source at best. Fun to read, but with the ability to edit it given to anyone, as a scientific source, it is sadly lacking.
Second: Yin and Yang is a Philosophical concept far from being based on scientific proof. As we are debating the psychological abilities of humans, I would suggest a philosophical concept has little bearing.


Chinese philosophy is based off of a balance of good and evil, heaven and earth, dark and light... without one you cannot have the other.


Are you supporting a Chinese Philosophy as Scientific proof?



Socratic Question 1:

what do you mean by "extreme endeavors"? (i could just be dumb... but I don't get it.


Answer:
Simple; I take great joy and pleasure in my life Mountain Climbing, Adventure Racing and (Formally) Skydiving. Extreme Endeavors.

Continued Rebuttal:


Man's desire for happiness is fed by unhappy experiences. Without them man cannot grow and realize true happiness.


For the second time, I would appreciate some proof of this unsubstantiated statement. I can say that the sky is green, does not make it so, but I can say it.


I have never stated man could not function within a state of happiness, or free of pain.


WHAT????

That is your side of the debate my esteemed opponent. If you are stating now that you believe they can, I will gladly accept your concession.


Socratic Questions:

Socratic Question #1
In reference to Yin and Yang…

One would assume the cornerstone of all modern sciences


Are you saying that the philosophical concept of Yin and Yang is the “Cornerstone of all Science”?

Socratic Question #2

I believe I have given enough evidence


What evidence?



More Answers:


Socratic question 2:
Can you provide one example of a person who has lived a life completely free of pain and unhappiness?


Answer: No
And YOU can not state factually that no one ever has.
Also remember that “Absence of evidence, is NOT evidence of absence!”
Again the possibility that someone has or has not lived in this manner, in no way supports a psychological concept that they can or can not.


Socratic question 3:
Can you name any Extreme change of society that occurred with absolutely no violence or suffering?


You will have to define “extreme change of society.”
While you’re at it, could you please explain to me how it affects the debate topic?
That will make it easier for me to answer in the context you are seeking.
But in order to stay in the rules, I will answer, no.


Socratic question 4 &5 :
Have you personally experienced (not to get to deep, not details, just yes or no will do fine) a moment of great sadness or pain that you did grow and learn something from? if so, would you have learned that lesson without the particular moment occurring?


Yes
I did not grow or learn from the death of my Granny; the single greatest woman that ever lived.
I have not grown or learned from all of the many, many times I have witnessed death in it’s many forms.
The second part of your question is irrelevant as my answer is yes.

Summation:

My opponent continues with the Yin and Yang philosophy and now expects us to apparently accept it as a scientific principle.

My opponent has stated this:


I have never stated man could not function within a state of happiness, or free of pain.


His apparent agreement to the very heart of the debate topic.

And:

My opponent continues on with the postulation that just because he can site examples of people that have suffered unhappiness and pain that somehow this is indicative of humans being psychologically incapable of functioning in an environment free of unhappiness and pain.

Remember the debate topic.

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

It may be difficult now as my opponent has not addressed psychology in any meaningful or scientific way since the debate began.

All that anyone has to do is examine Man’s very human and very natural desire to live happy and free from pain to conclude that not only can man psychologically function without unhappiness and pain, but that our minds are instinctually and evolutionarily designed to do so.

We shy from and fight to avoid pain as a natural function of our psyche. Our minds are designed to accept and seek out happiness.

During times of happiness, our minds exude massive amounts of Serotonin, Dopamine and melatonin; human “happy” chemicals that all cause us to desire and seek out the very real physical situations that cause our minds to reward us.
Happiness, Joy and Contentment.
Again, this is conclusive proof the mind not only CAN function without unhappiness and pain, it prefers to do so.


Remember this:

Humans are not only psychologically capable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain we are designed to do so.


Thank you,

Semper



posted on Mar, 8 2008 @ 12:02 AM
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Response 3:


Are you positive you want to base a scientific debate on quotes from a Philologist and Philosopher and a Rap song?


While I use both as an example, once again my humor (the rap song) was not noted. sorry for that.

One should note that Nietzsche is held in high regard throughout scholarly societies (read Scientific communities). While I do not want to turn this to a debate over philosophy, I feel I must make it clear that the fathers of the modern sciences were all PHILOSOPHERS. Aristotle, Plato, Socrates... All PHILOSOPHERS... To disregard all philosophies in a sense with statements such as "yin-yang Chinese mumbo-jumbos" is really a slap in the face of the rest of the world.

While you may not respect the ancient philosophies, they ARE a cornerstone of Scientific reasoning. You question why, and my answer is because it is ANCIENT philosophy, which as I stated a few sentences ago is the forbearer of what we know today as science.

My opponent keeps steering this debate towards a life with COMPLETE pain and Unhappiness or COMPLETE Lack of Pain and happiness. What he has yet to point out to our reader is that neither exist in this world.

While my opponent argues that life is lived for the pursuit of happiness, he does not show how one lives a COMPLETELY happy life. I maintain my contention that a person must experience a BALANCE of both positive and negative in life to be truly centered, or happy. Joy and Pain do go hand in hand. One must be capable of feeling pain to feel joy. One cannot live a life devoid of pain, it IS impossible.

Now my opponent is attacking a clearly unedited wiki page as an unreliable source... Well then... how about another (about.com link)

Ancient philosophy proving my point. Nietzsche, a modern philosopher, proving my point. While my opponent continues to tell us stories of happy memories. While these experiences may very well be nice and memorable, I can promise you reader, that there are unhappy and painful memories that have just as much effect on my opponents life, as well as mine and yours.

One may dismiss the realities of the world such as pain and suffering as non-existent... but an observant mind sees them here and now, daily.

My opponent explains "extreme endeavors"... What most would consider... RISKY endeavors, as a rock climber let me state the thrill of these sports... THE RISK OF DEATH... this NEGATIVE increases the adrenaline which is a natural high. same with sky-diving and auto-racing. the Higher the risk, the Higher the Adrenaline surge.

while it feels like a positive experience, what is the drive behind it? The negative. the RISK of pain and suffering, with the reward of avoiding it.
makes my point fairly clear in my humble opinion.

Answer 1:

Are you saying that the philosophical concept of Yin and Yang is the “Cornerstone of all Science"?

No. I am saying that PHILOSOPHY is the cornerstone of ALL modern science. Especially Psychological Sciences.


Answer 2:

What evidence?

thousands of years of Philosophical studies, modern philosophical studies, a paper written in a modern psychological article (which DOES state that PAIN AND SUFFERING are a NECESSITY to this life...) as well as multiple examples that any reader or debater would concede are viable and occurring in EVERY human life.



Socratic question 3:
Can you name any Extreme change of society that occurred with absolutely no violence or suffering?

This is relevant to the debate because societal changes are where changes in life occur (no more suffering or pain type changes anyways) and my contention is that NONE of these events have occurred WITHOUT some pain and suffering. Thus, another piece of evidence that life without pain and unhappiness is IMPOSSIBLE for humans to achieve.

While My opponent wants to berate the reader with statements about man's "drive" and goals... One must realize this is not a debate of the END, but of the Means of getting to that end. YES people can live happy and joyous lives. BUT they WILL experience pain and suffering during their life.

Pain and Unhappiness are as commonplace as death and taxes. Humans without pain, cannot learn to grow, towards new loves, or closer to their families, (bionic or platonic). Without Unhappiness humans cannot learn to appreciate what they have, such as being poor and feeling lowly for not having a new car, but you can appreciate the dinner you eat that night. These are facts of Every humans life.

One may wish for, strive for, or work for a pain free and happy life; however, this drive does not make the goal of it a FACT. Only a hope. One that is only truly perceived through pain and suffering. A person cannot know true love, until they have lost a love that truly meant something to them.

Basically people have to be knocked down a peg to see the forest for the trees. Pain and Unhappiness are the guarantee that we will get knocked down and see how life is truly beautiful. With the negatives, with the positives, we still get to live one, and normally it is a hell of one. BUT it requires pain and joy. Happiness and Sorrow. without these balances we would never have a chance to truly be whole.

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

we are designed to do so

While I agree with the quote in context to what I have typed above it, I whole-heartedly disagree with the context it is used in my opponents statement.

If we were designed to work without pain and unhappiness, how is it that pain and unhappiness still exist in our world?
one would think evolution would have taken care of this...


With that I pass the floor back to SemperFortis, for his final response before our closing statements.



posted on Mar, 8 2008 @ 06:31 AM
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Tournament Round 2

Coven vs. Semperfortis

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Semper’s Reply #3

Before I begin my rebuttal, I ask the reader to consider this.

We are NOT debating whether or not someone has ever lived free of unhappiness or free of pain.

We are NOT debating whether or not anyone ever will.

We are debating whether humans are psychologically capable of an existence free from unhappiness and pain; therefore a scientific debate involving the human psyche and not a philosophical debate over Man’s meaning in the universe.

Rebuttal:


While I do not want to turn this to a debate over philosophy, I feel I must make it clear that the fathers of the modern sciences were all PHILOSOPHERS.


And yet my opponent, that has been your argument all along. You strangely have been absent any true science and continued on with the completely irrelevant philosophy, meaning of mans existence and yin yang.

As for the Fathers of Modern Science being philosophers. Perhaps they were in their basements on their own time, but in reality here is the Fathers of Modern Science.


Nicolaus Copernicus
Isaac Newton
Galileo Galilei

A History of Science

Mathematics, Astronomy and Physics my esteemed opponent, not Philosophy.

I subject to you the reader, that the debate topic has nothing whatsoever to do with philosophy and is instead a straight forward question of science.


What he has yet to point out to our reader is that neither exist in this world.


I have asked you again and again to PROVE this off the cuff statement you continue to make and have yet to see any proof, other than asking me if I can prove that they do. Remember that it is YOU that continues to make this statement, in a factual way, with NO factual support, or evidence at all.


I maintain my contention that a person must experience a BALANCE of both positive and negative in life to be truly centered, or happy.


And yet it is the positive experiences, input if you will that the human brain rewards us for. YOU make that statement with zero supporting evidence. You should have read my summation on how the human brain is designed to reward us for our positive experiences, those that make us happy. See my summation here for evidence on how the brain also punishes us for our negative, unhappy and painful experiences.

It is clear that the natural human state, that all of our brains strive for is one of complete happiness and freedom from pain.

Remember the topic?
It is NOT whether humans HAVE or HAVE NOT lived free from unhappiness, it is whether they psychologically can.


Now my opponent is attacking a clearly unedited wiki page as an unreliable source... Well then... how about another (about.com link)


Another link with no bearing on the debate.


Ancient philosophy proving my point. Nietzsche, a modern philosopher, proving my point.


NO! You have yet to post anything that has PROVEN your point, or anything for that matter. Remember that YOU saying it does not make it proof. Some one philosophizing about it does not make it proof.

You have posted conjecture and postulation and called it proof my friend.


One may dismiss the realities of the world such as pain and suffering as non-existent... but an observant mind sees them here and now, daily.


I have submitted and again now for you, submit that they exist. Now be so kind as to PROVE man can not psychologically live without them. (Remember the debate?)


while it feels like a positive experience, what is the drive behind it? The negative. The RISK of pain and suffering, with the reward of avoiding it.
makes my point fairly clear in my humble opinion.


And yet if those endeavors provide a life full of happiness and free from pain, and the person experiencing them, ME, is not rendered incapable of functioning psychologically in society, it completely proves my point; and thus the debate.


thousands of years of Philosophical studies, modern philosophical studies, a paper written in a modern psychological article (which DOES state that PAIN AND SUFFERING are a NECESSITY to this life...) as well as multiple examples that any reader or debater would concede are viable and occurring in EVERY human life.


Please. Please provide us with the mystery papers and hidden truths you speak of; remembering to make sure they are relevant to man’s psychological ability to function free from unhappiness and pain.
To date and at this time, you have provided only your statements that they exist.


YES people can live happy and joyous lives. BUT they WILL experience pain and suffering during their life.


Again, you support my contention in your first sentence. As to whether they WILL or will not experience pain and suffering, how is this conclusive to their psychological ability to live without pain or suffering?


One may wish for, strive for, or work for a pain free and happy life;


EXACTLY MY POINT
The fact that ALL men work for and strive towards this goal is direct evidence that Man’s psychological makeup is designed to live in this manner.
Remember that it is a scientific principle that instinctual actions never have long term negative consequences in nature. It is in that way that Nature has guaranteed the survival of the species.


If we were designed to work without pain and unhappiness, how is it that pain and unhappiness still exist in our world?
one would think evolution would have taken care of this...


Our psychological makeup, (The Debate Topic) is completely separate from the environmental variables of our existence. While our environment may impact our psyche, and most assuredly does, our individual or group psyche can not control the environment. Again, basic scientific principle.

Summation:

Remember this:
“Happiness is the natural state for humans” Proof? OK.


In a study of 3,000 healthy British adults, Dr. Andrew Steptoe of University College London, found that those who reported upbeat moods had lower levels of cortisol -- a "stress" hormone that, when chronically elevated, contributes to high blood pressure, abdominal obesity and dampened immune function, among other problems.
Women who reported more positive emotions had lower blood levels of two proteins that indicate widespread inflammation in the body.

Happiness

There are endless examples of the human reaction to an elevated mood, but sadly restrictions on the number of sentences allowed here. Yet observe the proof dear reader, not postulation, supposition or conjecture; proof.

You will see that the article is written by an MD that specializes is human happiness. You will find his insight enlightening in the study of how the human psyche is designed to function in a state of happiness at peak efficiency and degrades during times of unhappiness and pain.

This research, from this eminent Doctor, all supports my argument that Man’s psyche, Man’s very existence is predicated on the very natural and instinctual pursuit of a life completely free from unhappiness and pain.

Again, proving that man is not only capable of functioning psychologically in an atmosphere free from unhappiness and pain; but it is his natural environment and most healthy condition.

In point if fact:

"Humans are NOT psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain". Rather, it is our most perfect and desirable condition.

Thank you

Semper



posted on Mar, 8 2008 @ 04:49 PM
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Well dear readers. It has come to the end of this great debate, and as such I feel it necessary to thank you, our moderator The Vagabond, my opponent SemperFortis, and of course the judges, for your time and attention during this debate! I have thoroughly enjoyed it, and look forward to the rest of the debate series!

That said My closing statements:



While our environment may impact our psyche, and most assuredly does, our individual or group psyche can not control the environment. Again, basic scientific principle.


I agree with my opponent our GROUP psyche does not control our environments. And he does make my point fairly clear. I am not debating the topic of rewards/punishments through the psyche. My purpose is to prove that "Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain"; which is easily proven by the fact that our environment, which has negatives that we must face to exist, affects our psyche.

As such Humans cannot live without pain, and being that our psychological development comes from our life experience, humans truly are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain.

My opponent posted a link with a quote explaining his point about this positive/negative reward/punishment correlation. While the author may be a doctor his writing reads like the modern philosophical books that are such hot sellers (i.e. The Secret). I do not see how this has a scientific basis, EXCEPT that those who experience LESS stress have LOWER stress levels... Seems fairly obvious outside of the scientific community.

I have made it fairly clear throughout this debate that the topic is NOT only a scientific topic (in the sense my opponent sees it anyways) but a topic of observational, and environmental studies. When one observes the world around them, one can clearly see that it is FULL of negatives, and people who are working through those negatives. They are an expected part of our day to day environment. Negatives come in even minor forms, and are a part of our psychological growth process. From issues with work, to losses in the family/ of friends. If we do not learn and grow through these processes, we are bound to live an even more hassled and problematic life. One must learn to cope with pain, to face future pains.

My opponent mentions Scientists who weren't around until thousands of years after the FATHERS of modern sciences. Proof that the philosophers I named are the true founders, by adding another name to the fold. Hippocrates. Founding Father of MEDICINE (last I checked, a form of science, and the basis of PSYCHOLOGY) and where the Term "Hippocratic Oath" comes from. Philosophy is the cornerstone of MODERN SCIENCE. PERIOD.

I have named A MODERN philosopher who agrees that "Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain", Nietzsche.
I have shown an article about psychological happiness, which also mentions the Chinese philosophy of Yin and Yang, and the correlation of having negatives and positives as a balance in ones life. This article is from a MODERN psychological industry publication.

My Evidence MORE than validates my point. While humans drive for happiness and lack of pain, we must face these experiences at some point in our lives. As Such WE ARE psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence with out unhappiness and pain.

My opponent and I have discussed the differentiation of philosophy and science, and I must clearly state that I CANNOT agree with the statement that Philosophy is not a form of science. I also must state that PHILOSOPHY IS a founding stone of PSYCHOLOGICAL STUDY.

While we know the chemical and electrical working of the brain, when it comes to the psyche, our knowledge is ALL philosophically based. there is no psychology without philosophy. As such proving the existence my opponent is defending is philosophically impossible.

With the correlation of philosophy and psychology, it only goes to reason that it IS psychologically impossible for humans to live a pain-free and 100% happy life. Not only is this impossible psychologically, but it is also impossible environmentally, and socially.

I do hope dear reader you will take my advice from my second response, and think on the experiences you have had, both good and bad... and to contemplate which things have affected your life, and what you learned from these experiences. While we take joy in our good memories, look at the bad ones, and see what you learned from them. Did they better you as a person? I believe you will find this to be true.

The Human Psyche Must Experience Pain and Unhappiness, to Learn How to Live a Truly Happy Life. Without these lessons we are exposed in our lives, to have worse pains brought upon us. It's not spiritual, it's not mumbo-jumbo. It's a fact of LIFE, Philosophically, Psychologically, and scientifically. I have wasted enough of my responses providing the evidence of this, and my opponent continues to ask for more. I will not be steered away from the purpose of my debate by listing more and MORE evidence to prove my point.

My statements, my articles, and my philosophical evidence, more than prove that the statement "Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain" Is 100% True.

Thank you for you time and attention,

I pass the floor to Semperfortis for his closing.



posted on Mar, 8 2008 @ 08:54 PM
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Tournament Round 2

Coven vs. Semperfortis

"Humans are psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

Semper’s Closing:

And another wonderful debate comes to a close. Thank you Coven for your participation, thank you TheVagabond for your awesome moderation and support and thanks to ATS for giving us this forum I have so come to love.

On with my closing:

During this debate I have provided both direct and empirical evidence in support of the premise that Man is fundamentally designed to psychologically function in an existence free from unhappiness and pain.

I have shown you scientific studies that prove the human brain is evolutionarily designed to flourish in an atmosphere free from pain and suffering. Studies that prove the human brain even rewards us during these times, indicative of not only our ability to function, but to thrive in an existence free from unhappiness and pain.

You have been given scientific studies, by several noted scientific minds, that clearly indicate the human brain’s increased health and growth during times of happiness and when we are not in pain.

I have provided actual scientific commentary from experts, supporting the fact that humans can not only function psychologically in an atmosphere free from unhappiness and pain, but that we are predisposed to do so.

My opponent has used philosophy and introspective ideology to show us what all of us already know; that pain and unhappiness actually exist in the world. We all know that.

Ladies and gentlemen, that is NOT the debate.

My opponent says that because we can not prove that anyone has ever lived free from unhappiness or pain, it means that we are not psychologically able to do so.
Remember that “absence of evidence is NOT evidence of absence.”
Also remember that he could not prove that no one ever has.

My opponent never once addressed the science behind the psychology of the human mind, or it’s functioning during times of happiness, unhappiness, pain or joy. The actual debate topic.

My opponent contradicted himself on several occasions and even openly admitted that Man seeks a life free from unhappiness and pain. In essence proving my point.

My opponent continued to state that we can not know happiness without unhappiness and never once, not one single time, provided any proof or substance to support this; other than a reference to Yin and Yang, a decidedly NON-scientific approach to the workings of the brain.

In fact on reading the entire debate again, my opponent never once really addresses the topic.

I happen to know what makes me happy as I am sure you all do, and I have never needed to feel pain to discover that happiness.

Think of it this way. Remember back to your first true love. You really loved her/him, correct? And you had never felt love before; factual evidence disproving my opponent’s supposition that we can not know happiness without unhappiness.

I do not need to suffer to know I do not want to suffer; neither do you.

As you read this debate, remember that while I provided you psychological evidence and scientific fact as per the debate topic; my opponent provided only philosophy and opinion.

Facts as they stand and are relevant to the debate topic:

1. Man psychologically desires happiness.
2. Man avoids and even fights to prevent feeling pain.
3. The brain releases positive chemicals to reward us for times of happiness.
4. The brain also releases chemicals to punish us for unhappiness and pain.

These are all scientific, psychological facts and unavoidable in the context of the debate.

That being said, there is only one conclusion:

"Humans are NOT psychologically incapable of functioning in an existence that is completely free of unhappiness and pain".

In fact, we are psychologically and instinctually designed to do so.

Thank you,

Semper



posted on Mar, 9 2008 @ 01:28 AM
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Semperfortis is victorious and will advance to round 3. Congratulations to both debaters on tackling a very tough topic very well.

Judges comments:

Coven seemed to have a little difficulty homing in on the root of his position. His argument seemed to consist in large part of weakly supported philosophical positions which were generally related to his topic, but didn't quite nail down the topic that people couldn't function without pain. Saying that he'd never stated his own position was the death knell for Coven, and it pretty much sums up what went wrong for him.



Neither side could really be proven and both sides chose to disregard arguments that I would have loved to see, but the general feel of the debate was that Semperfortis had control. He used his socratic questions better and kept turning things around, forcing Coven to spend a noticeable amount of time explaining or defending previous statements.



Coven's position was definately the correct one. The only reason the debate was close at all is because he didn't pursue his best evidence far enough- I'm not even sure he really knew what he had there. The boy who couldn't feel pain got himself killed because he lacked a deterrent against disfunctional behavior! Game set and match!



posted on Mar, 9 2008 @ 01:42 AM
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Congratulations to Coven on a well fought out and challenging debate....

It was a tough topic and I think that Coven got the "bad" end of it.

I'll debate you anytime Coven...

Semper



posted on Mar, 9 2008 @ 08:26 AM
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The boy who couldn't feel pain got himself killed because he lacked a deterrent against disfunctional behavior! Game set and match!


This is exactly the argument I was missing. But no worries coven, you lost to the best debater (along with Vagabond) on ATS. I was impressed with the entire debate.



posted on Mar, 9 2008 @ 11:28 AM
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*deeps Sigh*

ahhh... I knew it was coming. The second I saw Coven Vs. Semper I knew it would be a hard fight.

One good thing about this. I got some time in... and I get to focus mainly on the threads again as opposed trying to meet debate deadlines!



See ya'll in the runner-up rounds, or next debate cycle!


Coven
(and yes I will still discretely stalk all of you by reading your continued debates!)





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