Existentialism - a positive alternative to religion - or a negative one?


Chris_L 6 5.4k United Kingdom
28 Sep 2019 4:26PM
Ignorance is bliss. Some of my friends are as content as big spaniels with their tongues hanging out.

They don't give a second thought to the rest of the cosmos. Some of them believe in zodiac signs, mediums, crystals etc. They don't wonder why when rushing someone to A&E there's no attempt to discern the person's star sign before proceeding with treatment and the mediums they go to see are unable to ask the dead for their surnames, relying instead on "I've got a Harry or it might be Barry or Larry or Gary".

Religion had its place and its uses, it could be a civilizing force. The men who worked down the village pit all week and spent Friday night and Saturday in the pub were back on track by Sunday, at church, in their best clothes and back to work on Monday. God was watching them, listening to their thoughts, ready to punish them when they die, seeing if they were good boys or bad boys - I call it Santa Claus for adults.

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gcarth Plus
15 3.4k 1 United Kingdom
28 Sep 2019 8:44PM

Quote:Ignorance is bliss. Some of my friends are as content as big spaniels with their tongues hanging out.
Yes, the problem with blissful ignorance is that we might be less prepared when the nasty shock from the real world kicks in to our consciousness.

Conversely, the problem with knowledge or enlightenment is that you can't 'put it back in the box' because you don't like it or pretend it isn't so.
Carabosse 16 41.4k 270 England
30 Sep 2019 12:30AM

Quote:Yes, the problem with blissful ignorance is that we might be less prepared when the nasty shock from the real world kicks in to our consciousness.


For most (in the First World anyway), life progresses from cradle to grave without much real world intruding.

Of vastly more concern to those, who have little time on their hands for philosophy, are their personal financial position, children, health issues - including increasingly mental health as people live longer and dementia beckons.

gcarth Plus
15 3.4k 1 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2019 8:58AM


Quote:Of vastly more concern to those, who have little time on their hands for philosophy, are their personal financial position, children, health issues - including increasingly mental health as people live longer and dementia beckons.

Absolutely agree. I'm one of the lucky ones. However, I get angry because I think there are far too many people who are in the position you describe, not because of their own fecklessness or fault of their own, but because of the callousness and greed of certain politicians and business men.
hobbo Plus
8 1.4k 3 England
30 Sep 2019 11:13AM
Methinks you think to much methinks ........

I try to believe in Philosophy, but Im not sure if it exists, I wonder about those who do. 🤔
gcarth Plus
15 3.4k 1 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2019 2:10PM

Quote:Methinks you think to much methinks ........
The world needs both thinkers and doers.


Quote:I try to believe in Philosophy, but Im not sure if it exists, I wonder about those who do. 🤔

Philosophy certainly exists. The word comes from the Greek definition: "a love of wisdom".
We are all philosophers to some degree: Every time we comment on current affairs or contemplate the possible consequences of various actions we are philosophising. Wink
hobbo Plus
8 1.4k 3 England
30 Sep 2019 2:38PM
Ah!

But there are those who are taught philosophy, those who teach philosophy......and....those who philosophise in total ignorance.

I come from the latter group, so arenít sure whether to believe in it or not.....

Does that make me a Philistine ? 🤔

Hobbo🤓
gcarth Plus
15 3.4k 1 United Kingdom
30 Sep 2019 5:07PM

Quote:Ah!

But there are those who are taught philosophy, those who teach philosophy......and....those who philosophise in total ignorance.

I come from the latter group, so arenít sure whether to believe in it or not.....

Does that make me a Philistine ? 🤔

Hobbo🤓

I think all of us are ignorant in many areas of life. Even Socrates told everyone that he knew nothing!Smile
My view is that Philosophy is a very mixed bag that has been used and abused to justify various political and social controls. It's not a science but serves science and society in that it feeds ideas that prompt the direction of scientific experiments.

You're certainly not a Philistine, Hobbo: Most of us don't have time to think about Philosophy too deeply. Even I don't have much time for the more academic and obscure philosophical discussions. I think it is sensible to to get a good life balance by photographing or videoing, or whatever - and most important of all - being among good company (so that we can philosophiseWink).
Paul Morgan 18 19.4k 6 England
30 Sep 2019 8:01PM

Quote:
Quote:we could do a hell of a lot better if there were not so many greedy, psychopaths, sociopaths and narcissistic nutters in the world

On the whole - are things getting better? You don't have to go back too long to find witches burned at stakes, no votes for women, kids working for chimney sweeps and a host of terrible diseases which are trivial to treat now.

Did we peak in the 60s or the 70s or at some other time and society has gone back downhill?

In the Western world are we better off today than we've ever been? Have the upsides came with too many downsides? Are we slowly making progress towards a fairer and more equal world?



You don't have to go back too long to find witches burned at stakes

During the Inquisition many were burnt at the stake not for being witches but simply belonging to a faith other than being Catholic, many Muslims and Jews got targeted.

I`m of Jewish decent but I don`t think any of my family have ever practised the faith since escaping northern Europe in the middle of the 19th century.

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