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Are Money, Material Things making us less human.

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posted on Jul, 13 2011 @ 12:13 AM
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yes money can buy anyone, corruption is running a muck now




posted on Jul, 14 2011 @ 02:03 PM
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You make a good point. I know lots of people who strive to purchase "things." Me, not so much. I'm not one of those materialistic people and it really puts me off when others around me place such a high value on things. Just so you know, and maybe it'll give you a little bit of hope that we are not all that way.



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 09:56 AM
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I agree with many of your basic premises here - that we should all be treated as equals, share resources and eliminate the monetary system. When you thin about it the monetary system is faith based - it only works because most of us are willing to believe it has value. Stop using it. I know it sounds impossible but to whatever degree we can abandon it and simply share or barter for what we need we lessen the hold it has over ourselves.
Technology is a whole other question. Some of what you propose sounds to me like trading human masters for machine masters. Our lives now have been reduced to servicing the machines we've become dependent upon. We need to actually scale back the amount of tech we use to reach a certain level of sustainability, something I don't think is possible given our current technology. Tech needs to be simplified and made more environmentally friendly (an oxymoron, I know) but it's what we use and we cannot simply abandon it.
It's good to hear dialogue on such basic and critical issues. That is at least a starting place. We all intuitively know that things could be much better for most of us, and it's not for lack of technology or possessions, it's more for lack of human and natural interaction.
To go full circle it will be determined by what values and ideas are inculcated into our children. IF we are to begin creating change they will be the ones to have to see it through.
It's all much larger than I can find the answers for but perhaps collectively we can with each contributing an idea or 2 that can make things happen for good.
When people are in danger of being shot for stealing a few tools or a bicycle we have definitely lost our way as spiritual beings. That is something we cannot be if we attach too much importance to things and possessions.
Star and flag


PS - Why are Adam and Eve wearing animal skins? They covered themselves in fig leaves.
edit on 23-7-2011 by Asktheanimals because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 10:02 AM
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reply to post by TheUniverse
 

Ever tried to play a game where freedom is not emphasized or money is not available and had fun? I've never been able to enjoy games where I can't compete and be allowed to lose. I think it's human nature to identify ourselves through our competition with others. We're always comparing ourselves to someone else: money, body, mind, emotion, etc. I don't think money or material things can be removed as a source of identity anymore than emotions can be, or mind.

How we use money and materials things to identify ourselves could be different though from one culture to another. They may have varying amounts of it in proportion with other sources of identity. For example, it may be a culture that's 50% money and 50% emotion. We use money to purchase things that we can use to separate ourselves from others and to make ourselves a name. Money and materials things, therefore, are intimately tied together but are not exclusive from the other sources of identity in any fundamental fashion. This is because all of these sources of identity are finite; there's nothing infinite in human existence as we will all die. It's a continual struggle to conserve our energies in the fight to form an identity.

And it's possible for some people to transition from money to something else, like emotion. But trading one source of identity for another doesn't change the need to compete and form an identity. I suspect we will always war one way or another because competition has been bred into our very soul. Sometimes competition will lead to violent conflict.

A natural conclusion from all this is that to eliminate conflict we must eliminate our need for competition and/or we must find infinite sources of identity which implies we must live forever. Why do we compete for identity and perhaps other things not covered here? (i don't pretend to know our sole purpose in life) Perhaps we compete because things are finite, so maybe all of this is interrelated in some way. Or maybe we compete because it drives us towards improving ourselves, but how can we improve ourselves if things are infinite? Again, it seems to be codependent. Additionally, how can we have an identity if things are infinite? A source of identity that's infinite implies an infinite universe and it also implies that infinite access to identity means that nobody has an identity. Finite supplies of sources of identity ensures that separation between entities exists, but an infinite supply would put that into jeopardy. It's hard to say where all of this leads, natural or not. I'd be a fool to conclude much of anything.

It's strange to me that many of these thoughts derived from my game playing habits. I never thought games would teach me anything about life. Even to this day I feel they're mostly a waste of time. But when a 99 year old man tells you that the biggest problem in the world is greed after asking him to sum up this world, and greed has been on your mind because some dumb games you play, then it makes you wonder... If games can do that, what does that make RL?

REALlife. We all know reality is more painful than games. How much worse is greed in RL? I'll tell you, I know that greed is central to human thought and behavior because I saw it in games. But the reality of greed is something far more terrifying to me. It's all too real.

Know what else? I'm a greedy SOB and I hide in games to escape my anxieties about RL. What I'm most scared of is realizing that the impulses I exercised in games, if exercised in life, would no doubt make me a greedy SOB. Could I make those kinds of choices in RL? I don't think I could, but I don't know because I've never tried. I only that I am a pathetic example for a human being, no matter how you cut it, and I ran with my tail between my legs into a game world where I can pretend I am someone else and forget that all the while I am residing on earth and it's 2011.
edit on 23-7-2011 by jonnywhite because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 10:50 AM
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Originally posted by IPILYA
reply to post by whaaa
 


I don't see it as materialism, so much as I see it as that materialism being bigger and better than our fellow man. That never ending attempt to feel more important. It seems to me that this civilization is set up to pay the thinkers vastly more than the physical laborers, and that for some reason, makes the thinker more productive and more important than the laborer in societies eye. In other words, The less actual work one does, the more they get paid to do so, usually off the back of the ones who do work more. I am not saying that those people payed to think simply sit around and only think, but you can see, in the quality and length of life span, it is much different between a worker and a thinker.

Lets say an architect gets paid $50,000 for a two week project. In that same 2 week period the laborer that is doing the building makes $3,0000. Multiply that by a team of twelve(36,000) + the building company profit of $14,000 making 50,000( General numbers to show example).

 


As for the value I think it is fear based. In fact I think the process of life today is fear based.
Most people have a conscious or subconscious fear of having nothing. Not just the material, that most have but also shelter and food in more than a few cases. There are very few people completely off the grid, living completely self sufficient without the fear of loosing the land on which they live. In fact, at least in the United States, to do this is illegal in most parts. You must have plumbing at the very least in order to live there and in a lot of places electricity is also required, forcing you to work within the system, which also creates the fear of retribution of not maintaining. It is becoming easier today with alternative energy but even in that you must work within the system to pay for it all(In most cases) and maintenance, not to mention the inspections that pop up from time to time and the fear associated with being judged.

How do you work within the system without fear of judgment and ridicule from multiple angles?
Some may say "I don't care I will live my life the way I want" but that can and most often will lead to conflict and possible incarceration(legal kidnapping) or death. But the answer always comes back to having enough money to pay the people, who have the most fear of loosing their lively hood, which creates greed and hording. Through their fear, they assume if they carry the bigger stick, without compassion, they have some semblance of control.

 


The downward spiral of the corruption of the spirit.
edit on 7-7-2011 by IPILYA because: (no reason given)

If you look at the richest people, they're not scientists or philosophers or artists. They're bankers, investors, company executives, and so on. They're the guys that can handle stress very well and don't crack when things don't go as planned. They don't run straight for the coc aine when the winds blow hard. They don't sit down with a funny look and do th same repetitive thing all day as soon as the sun rises just because of fear. They face the world and look at it as weak and use it to their advantage. That's how they're so rich and lavish. But more importantly than that trait, they're bankers, they're investors, they're company executives. Don't forget that bit...

Believe it or not, some of my comments above were based on scientific research. Research shows that stressed mice run harder and quicker to the coc aine. It also shows that mice stressed over a continual period of time will tend towards repetitive behaviors and that research also shows that the learning areas of their brain are significantly shrunk in comparison to normal healthy individuals. I believe that the wealthy citizens of our world are that way, at least in part, because of their exceptional tolerance for stress and ability to negotiate the complex world that's life.

If you want to be rich in life, don't be a thinker, be a doer. Be a good listener. They say that smart people learn from others and dumb people can only learn from themselves. A smart person looks at this world and finds out where the go-arounds are. They find them and then they latch to them like a parasite and build a supportive environment around them. What goes on in-between the beginning of their dreams and the acquisition of them, that's where the dirty things are. But I believe the dirty things are in all humans, it's just that the characteristics of each person are different, the environment is different, so it's hard to make clear distinctions between things. It's all interrelated and codependent, as I see it. Either way, whether we can understand it or not, you can be sure that the enterprising people of this world that become wealthy are that way for a reason, you just have to find it and keep in mind that not everyone can be wealthy in this world; the pot of gold we're all fighting over is finite so we can't all be rich.

I believe we have all given ourselves to freedom: rich, poor, and those in-between. So, whether you admit it or not, you have submitted yourself to the lottery that is life. Freedom means that there will always be someone that does better than you. And we know from research that income fits a power law curve and there're other examples of this not just in humans but in nature. So in all likelihood the rich will stay few and the poor will stay many and regardless of our feelings and regrets, this game, or whatever you think it is, will continue on. So to address this we must decline to submit to it. But that would mean putting a restriction on freedom. Is that what we really want? History shows that people desire freedom above most other things.

Thusly (if you've read the previous paragraph), you understand my hangup.
edit on 23-7-2011 by jonnywhite because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 11:07 AM
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reply to post by Asktheanimals
 





Technology is a whole other question. Some of what you propose sounds to me like trading human masters for machine masters. Our lives now have been reduced to servicing the machines we've become dependent upon. We need to actually scale back the amount of tech we use to reach a certain level of sustainability, something I don't think is possible given our current technology. Tech needs to be simplified and made more environmentally friendly (an oxymoron, I know) but it's what we use and we cannot simply abandon it.


That is true and there should be lessons and/or gatherings for humans to learn back to our old ways in-case we must not rely on the machines anymore.

We must always be able to have back-up plans because machines are vulnerable to failure and many vulnerabilities.

So maybe have lessons or gatherings of humans if they want to volunteer and come to teach other humans how to live off the land and/or without machines.

This is why it is also necessary we preserve some of nature as our society advances.

There may be a point though where our robots become so advanced that they cannot be vulnerable to failure because they have to many fail-safes.. idk!





When people are in danger of being shot for stealing a few tools or a bicycle we have definitely lost our way as spiritual beings. That is something we cannot be if we attach too much importance to things and possessions. Star and flag


Yes Definitely people should not be shot for stealing things unless they threaten to shoot or harm with deadly weapon.

I don't think material things are worth killing fellow humans for either.




PS - Why are Adam and Eve wearing animal skins? They covered themselves in fig leaves.



I just liked the Picture
edit on 23-7-2011 by TheUniverse because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 12:56 PM
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reply to post by TheUniverse
 


Aboriginal cultures are the reason I began learning survival skills. Not as an emergency measure but as life ways that can coexist and allow both man and nature to flourish, Anthropologists break early societies down in to 3 categories:
Hunter gatherers (aborigines - Australia), pastoralists (nomads/herders -berbers - north africa) and Agriculturalists (settled communities who plant crops). Each have their own specifics to the life patterns, cultures and mythologies. Of the 3 the only group that is sustainable seems to be the hunter gatherers. The other 2 allow overgrazing, soil exhaustion and intensive methods of land use that require the importation of outside resources to survive or packing up and moving on the complete the whole process again in a new location. Overpopulation is the reward for intensive land use which usually leads to warlike behaviors to acquire new land or resources.
The hunter gather is generally small bands of semi - nomadic people whose lifestyle is not conducive to labor specialization or warfare. The tribe is too small to risk losses sustained by war. Overuse of the land is also discouraged by virtue of their organization.
I mention this because every society today has one or more of these elements as the root of their existence. Where we want to be should be measured in retrospect.
The only truly sustainable society I believe would be a hunter gatherer with small cities and very limited applications of technology.
I'd write more but it's 100 degrees in this room and I need to get cooled off. I hope this didn't sound like blind rambling.

Cheers,
ATA



posted on Jul, 25 2011 @ 09:41 AM
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reply to post by TheUniverse
 


It seems humans are not naturally racist nor are we naturally warmongers. We are naturally curious and welcoming.


Materialism is making us more inhuman and mechanical.





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