The Nature of Importance

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posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:01 PM
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Is the world one big market advertising for our attention?

What is important?

Who decides what is important, if we dont?

How and why do we define what is important and what not?

What are things we artificially make important?

What are things we artificially make unimportant?

What causes some people to downplay (make unimportant) good things and exaggerate (make important) bad things?

Vice versa, what causes some people to downplay bad things and exaggerate good things?

When we exaggerate the importance of things out there, do we loose the SELF?

Im asking these questions because Ive thought about "The Nature of Importance" a lot, but Ive never seen any book, study or teaching on it.

Id be interested in what others think is more important, less important, most important and why they think its important.

Im not necessarily asking "whats right/wrong" or "true/untrue"...but, whats important?




posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 02:12 PM
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I think it was Confucius who said the most important thing is to "do unto others as you would do unto yourself." I'm not sure if that's the most important teaching to remember or not, but I'd consider it to be one of them.

As you ask; "what is the nature of importance?"



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:23 PM
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I think it must incorporate Malcolm Gladwell's theory of the Tipping Point. What influences me often depends on my surroundings - either home or community, the people in the environment and the frequency of exposure to whatever it is that's deemed relevant, novel or crucial to them. At some point, importance then becomes viral - "If momma ain't happy, no one is happy."



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:32 PM
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Originally posted by Skyfloating

When we exaggerate the importance of things out there, do we loose the SELF?



I can answer you this question, and it is a simple one for me to answer.

Turn on the news - you will see things you do not wish to see, and yet because it is 'important' you may find yourself compelled to watch, even if it has nothing to do with you.

In the words of every person i ever gave an unwanted present, "It's the thought that counts".



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:34 PM
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Tell me, Skyfloating;

Do you consider the nature of this thread to be important?



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 08:00 PM
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The nature of importance in my way of thinking translate to the nature of prioritizing what we deem to be important.

Either by personal choice or geared and manipulated by society, the media or other force bearing entities around us.

But what makes us susceptible to manipulation is usually our own fault because we allow the manipulation and prioritizing of ideas be imprinted into us.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 08:01 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043

But what makes us susceptible to manipulation is usually our own fault because we allow the manipulation and prioritizing of ideas be imprinted into us.


And if we did not, would that nature change?



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 08:09 PM
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Well the only nature that change is the way that we become free thinkers and start thinking for ourselves, but as everything in society we are told to that is always a leader and a follower.

The leader is usually the one that uses authority to tell others how to prioritizes ideas and behavior but at the same time manipulates what is important.

This can be apply to everyday life, in any area of society, from politics, relgion, family ect.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 08:17 PM
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reply to post by marg6043
 


So you agree then, that the nature of prioritizing what we deem to be important can change in such a way that we find ourselves prioritising things completely to the contrary of what we once believed?

Which is, ultimately, why it is so nessecary to avoid dictatorships - a benevolent dictator may indeed be good for the people, but people change.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 08:27 PM
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I always thought that I chose what was important based upon which of my lenses I chose to look through. The process of choosing that lens depends on how I feel about it emotionally.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 08:57 PM
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Originally posted by Anti-Tyrant

So you agree then, that the nature of prioritizing what we deem to be important can change in such a way that we find ourselves prioritizing things completely to the contrary of what we once believed?



Exactly that is why a free thinker is usually call a dissenter when it goes against the rules of what the imposed and manipulated majority deems right.

We can see this going on with the media and our own government, manipulation of facts to promote what they consider to be of importance.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 09:13 PM
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reply to post by marg6043
 


Ah, but the nature changes often.

Worst of all, i agree, is in Government.

We find ourselves faced with opposing sides who (nowadays) continously change their priorities to suit what they believe the - as you put it - imposed and manipulated majority deems right.

That happened years ago, the - as you put it - imposed and manipulated majority (most of the majority, at least) has discovered that no one really cares about what they think, and now the government (and elements thereof) plays the "My idea is better than your idea" game, and people are forced to fall upon old values and priorities even if they are no longer truly represented by those leading the party the 'majority' is choosing to vote for.

Thus, the nature has changed once more.

Nowadays it is about prioritization, and whoever comes up with the best priority wins.

And so, "the nature of prioritizing what we deem to be important" is now a truly individual prospect, with each and every one of us weighing our priorities against that which those in power choose to prioritize.

People are starting to realise this, and just how effectively they are being manipulated by 'policies'.

I can't help but wonder when people are going to start prioritizing Political Reform.

Naturally, those in power will do their utmost to stop people from thinking in this manner - can you imagine what would happen if one day America stood up and demanded that Dick Cheney was removed from his position?

The whole lot of them - the Bush Cru, every single one of them would suddenly find themselves faced with the thing they fear most; an imposed and manipulated majority deeming that political reform is right.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 09:41 PM
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I see it this way. What has meaning? All meaning is either manufactured by us or by the people, government and media who imposes it on us when we are children.

I don't think anything is important to a newborn baby besides the present moment, and the need to feed.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 11:32 PM
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Originally posted by Skyfloating
Is the world one big market advertising for our attention?


Absolutely. But I would change the analogy to Flea Market...because everyone wants attention and everyone wants whjat they want; either short term desires(food, rest, etc.) or long term(career, family, etc.)



What is important?


That is a variable to many people. For may of us on ATS, important is having our voices heard to a wide audience.

But for the [most part, I would have to go with the terms "Context and Individual"

What is important is going to differ between individuals and as well, what is important for each individual is going to change as desires or met or made moot...on a day to day basis.



Who decides what is important, if we dont?


I love this question. It reaches into the reason for why organized religion was created, to instill morals and docility for the public(the motives were probably benign to begin with but as with all things was prone to corruption).

It reaches into the government, who is concerned with the idea of 'equal living', again context applies, for all men and women and the resolution of problems before and after they occur.

It reaches into the corporate interest, where advertisers are hired to find a quick general way to instill a sense of importance between the product/service they are associated with and the individual who may encounter the message.

It reaches into the family establishment, where traditional values and lessons are desired to be handed down through the generations but find a conflict with the regional popular culture.

It reaches into the individual, who has been lead to believe their entire existence that their is always someone else to do the job and therefore they just need to be concerned with their daily routines and functions.

But a well rounded person needs to be able to separate the fleeting interest with what is important. That takes comprehension of the surrounding environment as well as well reasoned collaboration in order to offer various points of importance. Britney Spears wouldn't be brought up once in this conversation...unless the conversation was held between people who were raising Britney Spears.

That wonderful word context strikes again...



What are things we artificially make important?

What are things we artificially make unimportant?


Two great questions that I would like to hear from others on...



Im not necessarily asking "whats right/wrong" or "true/untrue"...but, whats important?


A great place to start is this...'important' is a nine letter, three syllable word that has a variant connotation to the various people who may interact with said term.

The key is "various"...after all..what is important is always a negotiation.

[edit on 12-6-2008 by MemoryShock]



posted on Jun, 13 2008 @ 12:15 AM
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It's evident that importance is both an analyzable quantity, and a dynamic concept, each to some extent.

We can derive causes and origins of many motivations towards what a person might deem as important. In attempting to be more precise, and narrow in on exactly where the judgement of importance comes from, the number of possible motivations increases. And so does the scope of actions those numerous motivations could have been applied to. Objective definitiveness slips between the fingers like jelly.

'Importance' is thus an intrinsically self-defined concept.

Our languages have many words and metaphors for spontaneous embracing of importance -- 'whim', 'flight of fancy', the undefined 'spur of the moment', to name a few. Definable motivation can always be separated from the intrinsic 'whim', yet the concept and reality of whim remains.

We don't know why people act on whim. We do know that, sometimes, when people act on whim, they find amazing fulfillment and achievement that would never have been predictable. It seems more than random, sometimes, but no one has proven that one way or the other. This is perhaps a fundamental aspect of that which makes us non-mechanical creatures.



posted on Jun, 13 2008 @ 05:32 AM
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Originally posted by Anti-Tyrant
Do you consider the nature of this thread to be important?


My answer to this would add or subtract from its importance. My investment of time, response and example would add to its importance. My lack of response would subtract from its importance.

Your lack of response would subtract from its importance.

It is my impression that most Importances are arbitrary, artificially made.

What remains important after we strip away artificial importance?

Thats the philosophical question posed in this thread.

But like someone already said: A newborn seems to have no importances other than getting fed.

[edit on 13-6-2008 by Skyfloating]



posted on Jun, 13 2008 @ 05:36 AM
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Originally posted by MemoryShock

What is important is always a negotiation.




This would be a phrase you could hang up on a wall.



posted on Jun, 13 2008 @ 09:27 AM
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Originally posted by Skyfloating
What remains important after we strip away artificial importance?

Ineffable whim. Hey, perhaps the non-causal nature of serendipity can be explained by same mechanisms as 'Reverse Speech':

Reverse Speech: Exploring the mysterious world within

And such spontaneity is simply our future backwards-living selves managing to influencing us.




posted on Jun, 13 2008 @ 10:15 AM
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The question, "what is most important?" is a big one for me. It's like the world is a big menu with every type of food I can eat, and it all tastes good. How the heck do I choose?



posted on Jun, 13 2008 @ 11:28 AM
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KRUEL: I also see that when looking at ATS...hundreds of fancy, shiny, bright threads on offer...which do I choose...and why?


Ian McLean: Reverse Speech was always one topic at the very bottom of my importance scale





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