Tuesday, October 16, 2018

What is HUMAN?


1. Ethics--Morality, OUGHT, Good versus Evil, Justice, Human Rights

2. Reasoning

3. Creative Choice--limited 'free will,' ability and moral responsibility

4. Sense of Awe, Ultimate

5. 4th Dimensional Being--
Self Awareness
Historical Awareness
Futuristic Awareness
Transcendent Awareness

6. Sense of Beauty--Aesthetics

7. Mathematics

8. Scientific Method

9. Invention

10. Exchange of Things by Symbolic Means--Economics

11. Story-Making--Literature, Media

11. Pattern-Seeking

12. Becoming--Evolving


"Those who forget the past are condemned to fulfill it" (repeat, repeat...).
--Philosopher George Santayana

"Those who remember the past are condemned to fulfill it" (repeat, repeat...).
Also,shown in history and current events to be true.

"The past is never dead; it isn't even past."
--Nobel-Winning novelist William Faulkner

"Stories are at the center of the human condition. Everybody dreams. Try and dream in nonfiction."
Journalist Jim Trelease

"I've always tried to be aware of what I say in my films because all of us who make movies are teachers--teachers with loud voices."
--Film director and writer George Lucas, Star Wars Trilogy

"Films are the parables of our time. Ideas underline every film produced and ideas have consequences."
--Terry Lindwall, movie producer

"To read without reflecting is like eating without digesting."
--Edmund Blake


The novelist John Steinbeck wrote that all of his life he wished he had never been born!

Even if one had to stand on a narrow ledge with his face against a cliff for 70 years, it would be better than not to have been born.
--statement by Fyodor Dostoevsky, the Russian writer

"People are froth on the molten mass."
the main character in The Sea Wolf
by Jack London, highest paid writer in the world at the start of the 20th century

All humans have no more worth than a speck of gravel on the bottom of a shoe...
from Online discussion

"We are committed to treating each person as having inherent worth and dignity, and to making informed choices in a context of freedom consonant with responsibility."
Humanist Manifesto III

Every human is a "biochemical puppet."
"The Marionette's Lament" and Free Will by Sam Harris

"Murderers and rapists aren't morally responsible."
Biologist Jerry Coyne

In contrast, according to South African astrophysicist George Ellis, when asked if all humans have free will:

George Ellis: "Yes.
Einstein is perpetuating the belief that all causation is bottom up. This simply is not the case, as I can demonstrate with many examples from sociology, neuroscience, physiology, epigenetics, engineering, and physics. Furthermore if Einstein did not have free will in some meaningful sense, then he could not have been responsible for the theory of relativity – it would have been a product of lower level processes but not of an intelligent mind choosing between possible options.
--Retired astrophysicist professor George Ellis is a Quaker. He also co-wrote The Large-Scale Structure of Space-Time with Stephen Hawking

BUT one leading current non-religious historian claims that Liberty, equality, human rights, free will etc. are all "myths."
Historian Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens

In positive contrast to such stark negativity:
Many other thinkers emphasize All humans do have real inherent worth. Liberty, equality, human rights, free will are real. For instance consider the following statements:
"...recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,
whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts...
UN Declaration of Human Rights

"One of the deeply held beliefs of Friends (Quakers) is that there is inherent worth in every human being. Peace, therefore, is not just the absence of war, but requires a just society that recognizes this inherent worth. Friends actively engage in the politics of their society to bring a voice of conscience – there is no separation between beliefs and deeds."

"Friends were among the founders of many prominent social justice organizations, including Greenpeace, American Friends Service Committee, and Amnesty International, and served as leaders in the abolitionist, women’s rights and civil rights movements."

And the 7 Principles of Unitarian-Universalists:

"The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part."


In the Light,

Daniel Wilcox

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