Friday, May 31, 2013

479: The Origine of the Yi Ching

When, in the year 221 BCE., the First Emperor (Shih Huang Ti) of the Ch'in dynasty succeeded in consolidating the small kingdoms and dukedoms of feudal China for the first time into one vast empire, 

he took the most drastic measures ever conceived by an absolute monarch to suppress the spirit of liberty which was just about to bloom. 

He would not tolerate a single thought that did not agree with his. He would not countenance scholars and thinkers who dared to assume an independent air and voice their opinions. 

He silenced all criticism by burying his critics alive, and put an end to the discord of beliefs by burning all the books and documents, that were not in sympathy with the new administration (213 BCE.). 

The effects of such radical measures were just what the Emperor desired. He suppressed all independence of thought and reduced the spirit of the nation to a comatose condition, which lasted for a millennium.

This put an end to the the Period of the Hundred Schools of Thought, or as others call it the Ante-Ch'in period, a period where philosophical thinking  was pluriform and creative.

The oldest books extant in China are the Shu Ching, the Five Books, one of which was the Yi Ching, Book of Changes. It plays a dominant role  in the history of Chinese philosophy.

Strictly speaking, the Chinese are not a speculative people like the Greeks or the Hindus. Their interests always centre in moral science, or rather in practical ethics. 

However subtle in their reasoning, and however bold in their imagination, they never lose sight of the practical and moral aspect of things. 

They refuse to be carried up to a heaven where pure ideas only exist. They prefer to be tied down in earthly relations wherever they may go. 

As you know, our Western reasoning follows the rules of logic, the values true and false. But we went further. 

We developed modal logic, in which we analyze the possible in relation to the necessary, or deontic logic, the field of logic that is concerned with obligation, permission, and related concepts.

Chinese thinking never came even close to this way of using the brain. A fascinating question is how this could happen.

The first speculative philosophy ever constructed by Chinese thinkers was a kind of dualism. It is described in the Book of Changes, the Yi Ching.

But it is not a kind of logical dualism like we know. A dualism of True and False, because this assumes an abstract concept of truth, which was not the way Chinese thinkers operate.

Their thinking is metaphorical, literary and poetic. Thence the famous concepts of Yin and Yang stand not for true and false, 

but have completely different meanings, which relate to how Chinese thinkers saw reality, the world, life.

The Yi Ching, however, is probably the most unintelligible, most enigmatic document ever found in Chinese literature.

It was mainly during the Chou Dynasty (c. 1046 - 256 BCE) that great thinkers focused on the interpretation of the Yi Ching.

It was in this aera, that two antagonistic currents of thought manifested themselves at an early date in the history of Chinese philosophy, and run throughout its entire course. 

One is represented by the "Yi Ching" and Confucius (551-479 BCE.). The other by Lao-tze.

The former advocated a dualism, and showed agnostic, positivistic, and practical tendencies; while the latter was monistic, mystical, and transcendental.

The Discussion

[13:28] herman Bergson: Thank you :-)
[13:28] herman Bergson: And for your information Merlin...
[13:28] Debbie DJ: Thanks Herman.
[13:28] herman Bergson: next lecture(s) will deal with the Yi Ching in detail
[13:28] Merlin: Yes, the I Ching definitely has a practical side
[13:29] Debbie DJ: Herman does the Yi Ching pre date 221BCE?
[13:29] Merlin: Ooh, well perhaps I should come to those then
[13:29] herman Bergson: The thing is....
[13:29] herman Bergson: the original texts may date back to 2400BCE....
[13:29] Bejiita Imako: aaa ok
[13:29] Bejiita Imako: old stuff then
[13:30] Debbie DJ: 4600 years old?
[13:30] Merlin: I have also noticed that traditional Chinese thinking is very different from ours
[13:30] herman Bergson: a thousand or more years later the Chinese themselves actually didn't know what the texts really meant
[13:30] herman Bergson: It certainly is Merlin
[13:30] Merlin: There was a time when all the books were burnt, and I think the I Ching survived it
[13:30] herman Bergson: Yes Debbie...probably that old :-)
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:31] herman Bergson: Yes that was in 221 BCE
[13:31] herman Bergson: as I just told :-)
[13:31] Merlin: In those days when books were burnt they were totally eliminated, not as it would be now, with copies everywhere
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: so lots of old history lost
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: what a shame
[13:32] herman Bergson: that indeed...but the Shu Ching survived...
[13:32] Debbie DJ:  ✧✩**✩✧ G I G G L E S ✧✩**
[13:32] Debbie DJ: The cloud is risky for long term interpretation...
[13:32] herman Bergson: I guess that that book burning Emperor yet had some respect for those
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: its a bit same thing today when they censor the internet and prevent free speech and all about human rights and so
[13:32] Merlin: well it was more recent than I thought if only around the time of Pythagoras
[13:33] Merlin: hehehe
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: ok
[13:33] herman Bergson: Yes indeed...
[13:33] Merlin: Sees signs of digression creeping in
[13:34] Debbie DJ: Maybe social cohesion is more important than high technology ?
[13:34] herman Bergson: For some reason the Yi Ching was considered a kind of holy book....which not even an emperor dared to burn
[13:34] Merlin: Oh, I didnt know why
[13:34] Merlin: or had forgotten
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:35] herman Bergson: and the thing is....the book is so enigmatic that you can interpret it any way you like
[13:36] Debbie DJ: I wonder what thought processes brought it into being? Its like a sudoku puzzle in a way
[13:36] herman Bergson: So the First Emperor (Shih Huang Ti) of the Ch'in dynasty could always be pleased with a pleasing interpretation :-)
[13:36] herman Bergson: yes debbie.....
[13:36] herman Bergson: and another thing is....
[13:36] herman Bergson: it has a kind of mathematical structure with its 64 diagrams....
[13:36] herman Bergson: Pythagoras would have loved it....
[13:37] Debbie DJ: exactly
[13:37] Merlin: I have certainly noticed the translations vary a lot
[13:37] Debbie DJ: and it appeared so early?
[13:37] herman Bergson: The Chinese didn't do anything with that feature
[13:37] herman Bergson: I don't think the origins are really known Debbie
[13:38] herman Bergson: There are a number of ..sort of mythological stories about it...
[13:38] Merlin: Well I see it in common with the Tarot as being a kind of map of all possible states of being
[13:38] Debbie DJ: The Chinese used the feature to give people a guide.... random guide.
[13:38] herman Bergson: but they are not historical
[13:39] Merlin: I think the I Ching has some very good points but some of the inner reasoning is bizarre....
[13:39] Merlin: and rather like astrology
[13:39] herman Bergson: it is kind of similar like the origine of the old testament...
[13:40] Debbie DJ: Its a social device i think.
[13:40] herman Bergson: Yes Merlin....
[13:40] Bejiita Imako: ok
[13:40] herman Bergson: Yes something like that Debbie....
[13:40] Merlin: Yes I suppose they both go back about the same amount of time ... since early writing was possible I suppose
[13:40] herman Bergson: s our popular knowledge believes it is a book of divination
[13:40] Debbie DJ: When did the old testament appear?
[13:41] herman Bergson: But that is not really the case...
[13:41] herman Bergson: The Old Testament is a collection of many many old hebrew texts....
[13:41] MerlinMerlin listens
[13:42] herman Bergson: Like the Yi Ching is too....
[13:42] Merlin: Oh I thought you were going to say more about divination
[13:42] Merlin: and why the I C is not for that
[13:42] herman Bergson: The y way the Chinese saw the divination power of the Yi Ching was more as a kind of support....
[13:43] Merlin: Well you can use almost anything for divination but.....
[13:43] herman Bergson: When they took important decisions they used the Yi Ching to show whether it would turn out good or bad...
[13:43] Merlin: the good thing about the I Ching is that it is constructive
[13:44] herman Bergson: It was not really meant to predict future events
[13:44] Debbie DJ: Yes. and prompts action.
[13:44] Bejiita Imako: aha
[13:44] Merlin: It tells what to do in a given situation
[13:44] herman Bergson: It was a counseling device....
[13:44] Merlin: Not just tells what that situation is, like say the tarot
[13:45] herman Bergson: It tells what to do in a situation when you are already in that situation and ponder about how to act
[13:45] herman Bergson: I would say
[13:45] Debbie DJ: Thats how it was used in my youth.
[13:45] Merlin: I think it tells what to do in any situation
[13:46] Debbie DJ: Persuading people that their decisions are ok.
[13:46] herman Bergson: lecture(s) we'll elaborate on this subject in much more detail...
[13:46] herman Bergson: Something like that Debbie
[13:46] Bejiita Imako:
[13:46] Merlin: For example from memory. Oppression.... Stake your life on carrying out your will
[13:46] herman Bergson: Thank you all again for your interest..^_^
[13:47] Merlin: TY to you too Herman
[13:47] herman Bergson: Class dismissed :-))
[13:47] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[13:47] Debbie DJ: Fascinating. I know so little about this topic.
[13:47] Bejiita Imako: hmm this can be an eye opener indeed
[13:47] Merlin: well I am glad you see that a reason to be interested Deb
[13:47] Bejiita Imako: ok cu soon again all
[13:47] Bejiita Imako:
[13:47] Debbie DJ: bye bejita

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

478: First steps into Chinese Philosophy

The more you study on the subject, the more fascinating it becomes: Chinese philosophy. I hardly had a look at it formerly.

Of course I have read my classics like Plato, Aristotle, Cusanus, Descartes. Locke, Hume and many others. But among them wasn't a single Chinese philosopher.

So, for this project I have to rely on literature, my own common sense and some understanding of history.

When you think of Chinese philosophy, you probably first think of Maoism and communism. Maybe some of you also have heard about Confucius. But that would be it.

Looking at the history of Western philosophy we see a continuous debate with time and again new insights and arguments, century after century.

Chinese philosophy has passed through four periods: the ancient period (until 221 BCE), when the so-called Hundred Schools contended; 

the middle period (221 BCE–960 CE), when Confucianism emerged supreme in the social and political spheres, only to be overshadowed in philosophy first by Neo-Daoism and then by Buddhism; 

the modern period (960–1900), when Neo-Confucianism was the uncontested philosophy, although by no means without variety or conflicts of its own; 

and the contemporary period (from 1912), when Neo-Confucianism, having become decadent and being challenged by Western philosophy, first succumbed to it, then was revived and reconstructed, but at mid century was overwhelmed by Marxism.

Isn't it amazing? A period of more than 900 years dominated by what is called neo-Confucianism, one single philosophy. In that same period Europe went from the "Dark" Middle Ages to the Industrial Revolution.

The dramatic contrast between Chinese and Western modes of philosophic thinking may be illustrated by the fact that the tendency of European philosophers to seek out the being of things, 

the essential reality lying behind appearances, would meet with little sympathy among Chinese thinkers, 

whose principal interests lie in the establishment and cultivation of harmonious relationships within their social ambiance. 

Contrasted with Anglo-European philosophic traditions, the thinking of the Chinese is far more concrete, this-worldly and, above all, practical.

Western thinking was cosmogonic and cosmological oriented. That means, we occupied ourselves with the question of creation, where does the earth and mankind come from?

You already find examples of that in Judaic and Hebrew texts. Plato gives in his dialog Timaeus a complete description of the origin of the cosmos and man.

Such myths  played hardly any role in early Chinese thinking. It was not focused  upon issues of cosmic order but upon more mundane questions of how to achieve communal harmony.

The relative unimportance of cosmogonic myths in China helps to account for the dramatically different intellectual contexts from which the Chinese and Western cultural sensibilities emerged.

In Western philosophy logic and logical reasoning have priority, while Chinese thinking is less formal and prefers to use analogy and more literary ways of formulating ideas.

Chinese thinking is largely indifferent to what we love so much: abstract analyses that seek to maintain an objective perspective.

The disinterest in dispassionate speculations upon the nature of things, and a passionate commitment to the goal of social harmony was dominant throughout most of Chinese history.

Main Sources:
MacMillan The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1995
An Introduction to Chinese Philosophy - Karyn L. Lai, Oxford 2008
Chinese Philosophy, P. Carus, 1902
A Brief History of chinese Philosophy. D.T. Suzuki, 1914

The Discussion

[13:20] herman Bergson: Thank you :-)
[13:21] herman Bergson winks at CONNIE
[13:21] Debbie DJ: Hi Connie
[13:21] CONNIE Eichel smiles at professor
[13:21] CONNIE Eichel: hi deb :)
[13:21] Ciska Riverstone: thank you herman - hello connie
[13:21] herman Bergson: If you have questions or remarks...the floor is yours :-))
[13:21] CONNIE Eichel: oh, hi ciska :)
[13:22] Loo Zeta-Ah: thanks..... I guess my little bit of knowledge comes from the healing arts and chi
[13:22] Sigmund Oppenbaum: So, does Chinese philosophy not concern itself at all with questions of the meaning of life or origin?
[13:22] herman Bergson: That is the amazing thing Sigmund.....
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: that can be correct that we seek more concrete things like science and so while the Chinese are more abstract and spiritual directed
[13:22] Debbie DJ: Herman, the Chinese philosophy is quite "ethical" - more about making the community a great place to be...
[13:22] herman Bergson: No Bejiita.....
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: and focus on harmony and things like that
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: take feng shui for ex
[13:23] herman Bergson: they arent that spiritual at all....
[13:23] herman Bergson: at least not in their philosophy...
[13:23] herman Bergson: It goes deeper....
[13:23] Debbie DJ: Its about balance, give and take, good and bad.
[13:23] Sigmund Oppenbaum: It would seem, by comparison, that Western Philosophy is far more concerned with God
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:23] Ciska Riverstone: is it because past and future are not important?
[13:23] herman Bergson: In our western thinking all begins with Chaos in which order is created....
[13:24] Bejiita Imako: yin yang and such things play an important role i guess
[13:24] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Good question, Ciska
[13:24] herman Bergson: Indeed Bejiita
[13:24] Bejiita Imako: balance
[13:24] Loo Zeta-Ah: Ying and Yang
[13:24] herman Bergson: We have this Chaos - Order opposition....
[13:24] Debbie DJ: They didn't have a judgmental personal god, who could be called on in times of war....
[13:25] herman Bergson: we make up a story how order came to chaos...which we now would call science....
[13:25] Bejiita Imako: aha
[13:25] herman Bergson: The Chinese have a completely different starting point....
[13:25] Bejiita Imako: seems so indeed
[13:25] Loo Zeta-Ah: 'energy'
[13:25] herman Bergson: there is no Chaos for them....but only Change....
[13:26] Debbie DJ: Awareness of this moment....
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:26] herman Bergson: Their most important book through history therefore is..."The book of Change",
[13:26] herman Bergson: the Yijing or I-Tjing....
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: the change towards ultimate balance and peacefulness
[13:27] herman Bergson: And indeed Debbie...they don't have a personalized god
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: no
[13:27] Sigmund Oppenbaum: It is of course difficult to place oneself outside of one's own philosophical Weltanschauung, but, to me, the question of 'why we are here' seems like a very universally human one to ask. And a most important one.
[13:27] Debbie DJ: The book of changes is the I Ching :)
[13:28] Ciska Riverstone: The zen buddhistic sight on that would be - we are - thats enough
[13:28] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Sorry for the long question/statement
[13:28] herman Bergson: Maybe because their starting point was the belief in Change explains why they never searched for laws of nature....unchangeble and unchanging rules
[13:29] herman Bergson: Yes seems so.....but not in Chinese philosophy....
[13:29] herman Bergson: It is asking for an absolute.....
[13:29] Ciska Riverstone: wasn't their starting point just in observing?
[13:29] herman Bergson: Chinese thinking wasn't focused on absolutes it seems
[13:29] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Where was our starting point then, Ciska?
[13:30] herman Bergson: Well...they identify 5 elements....
[13:30] Ciska Riverstone: they observe inside - we tend to observe outside
[13:30] herman Bergson: Not for, for instance...
[13:30] herman Bergson: because four is two and two.....static....
[13:30] herman Bergson: you never can divide 5 equally
[13:30] Bejiita Imako: no
[13:31] herman Bergson: To some extend you are right Ciska...
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: math is absolute and the language of the natures laws
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: Chinese don't seek that i guess
[13:31] herman Bergson: But a lot of Chinese thinking is about social order....and to be a good citizen....
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: its more sort of floating
[13:32] herman Bergson: and yes....a virtuous person....
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:32] herman Bergson: I must say...
[13:32] herman Bergson: a complete different approach....
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: very
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: different
[13:33] herman Bergson: Does anyone of you know the Yijing or I-Tjing?
[13:33] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Chinese culture places great importance on honor when it comes to morality, does it not?
[13:33] Sigmund Oppenbaum: I do not
[13:33] Debbie DJ: I have read bits of it some years ago.
[13:33] .: Beertje :.: i have the book of I-Tjing
[13:33] .: Beertje :.: of
[13:33] herman Bergson: It is popular here as a book for divination...
[13:34] Bejiita Imako: ok
[13:34] Debbie DJ: I used to have I Ching cards too.
[13:34] herman Bergson: And to you Sigmund....honor...I would use the word 'respect'
[13:34] herman Bergson: respect for the ancestors
[13:34] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Uh-ha
[13:35] herman Bergson: It is , I believe , the oldest known Chinese text...
[13:35] Debbie DJ: African culture is also big on respect for others and ancestors.
[13:35] herman Bergson: Yes...and the point do not question your ancestors....
[13:36] herman Bergson: They were right .....
[13:36] .: Beertje :.: even when they were wrong..
[13:36] Debbie DJ: Western culture places much higher importance on individuality, and we repect the rich ;)
[13:36] herman Bergson: A bit similar like some people here use the don't question it...what is written there is right
[13:36] Debbie DJ: or the dollar.... god help us
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: Fromm would have said: westerns are focussing on having - easterns on being
[13:37] Bejiita Imako: thats how it is in the us, their weapon laws are based on some guys lived for several 100 years ago when there was no of the weapons there are today, thats why everyone mean they must have weapons even when children shoot each other by mistake and so
[13:37] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Well, that is not completely true, Professor. The Bible has been questioned and Theology is a very established field of Academia
[13:37] Bejiita Imako: but US is different
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: but they swear by those guys
[13:38] herman Bergson: indeed Sigmund, therefor I said "some people" :-))
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:39] .: Beertje :.: [13:37] Ciska Riverstone: Fromm would have said: westerns are focussing on having - easterns on being is this still true? China is growing?
[13:39] Bejiita Imako: hmm indeed china is a mass production state too now
[13:39] herman Bergson: I am thinking about that Ciska....
[13:39] Sigmund Oppenbaum: The Westerner questions and wants to know 'why'. Look at any small child, they always ask 'why'. Does the Far East Asian not ask this?
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: well we are talking of the origins right now Beertje right?
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: now china is doing it the other way round too - of course ;)
[13:40] herman Bergson: This 'being' for Chinese is mainly....socially being....
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: but now the cultural basics moved on as well
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: yes
[13:40] herman Bergson: being a good citizen....
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: being in the sense of being creative
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: being there
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: being there for others
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: being
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: not having
[13:40] herman Bergson: being there for others is ok.....
[13:40] herman Bergson: I guess that will fit Chinese thinking..
[13:41] Bejiita Imako: yes thats good things
[13:41] herman Bergson: But they are not so much interested in an existential way of thinking about being
[13:42] Bejiita Imako: they just are
[13:42] Bejiita Imako: sort of
[13:42] Debbie DJ: It seems we have a lot to learn by looking at eastern philosophy - it helps us to understand that there are other ways.
[13:42] Bejiita Imako: indeed
[13:42] herman Bergson: I wonder Debbie....
[13:42] herman Bergson: Yes other ways...
[13:43] Sigmund Oppenbaum: I fear we will find little application for their view... I wonder
[13:43] herman Bergson: but "other" in which sense.....
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: i guess you underestimate that Sigmund
[13:43] herman Bergson: That is what we will investigate during this project indeed Sigmund
[13:43] Bejiita Imako: this will be awesome
[13:43] Bejiita Imako:
[13:44] herman Bergson: thank you Bejiita :-)
[13:44] herman Bergson: Welcome to the new world of Chinese thinking...
[13:44] Bejiita Imako:
[13:44] herman Bergson: Thank you all for your participation...
[13:44] Debbie DJ: Other in the way we interpret a random chaotic life in a random universe.
[13:44] Sigmund Oppenbaum: It certainly is intriguing
[13:44] Bejiita Imako: interesting to look at things from different ways
[13:44] Bejiita Imako: the more different the better
[13:45] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Yes, that it is, Bejita
[13:45] Debbie DJ: Yeah. Thanks Herman. Its good to watch you growing your horizons.
[13:45] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Thank you, Professor
[13:45] herman Bergson: Thank you all
[13:45] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[13:45] herman Bergson: Class dismissed :-))

477: Non Western Philosophy - an introduction

This project puts me in a very difficult position. Those of you who have attended a number of my lectures may have some idea about my personal philosophical position.

To be honest, and some of you certainly will suspect it, I run the risk of suffering of ethnocentrism in philosophy ("male, white, European"),

because already my first project was about 100 philosophers. Almost all male, white and European, except two female philosophers and three or four American philosophers.

Besides that, you may accuse me of using a rather restricted definition of "philosophy" with emphasis on epistemology, logic and rationality.

You can hardly blame me for that. The emphasis on logical argumentation and epistemology reached its zenith only recently, 

with the logical positivists in the 1930s, when virtually every kind of metaphysics was dismissed as technically "meaningless."

At the university I was educated in that tradition or to be more accurate, I had chosen for that tradition based on the conviction that THAT was the real philosophy.

Of course there are people who fundamentally disagree with that point of view. In the first place by saying that there even does not exist something like "Western" philosophy.

To begin the history of "Western" philosophy with Thales of Milete (600 BC) is in fact already a mistake. On the one hand, he didn't live in Europe,

and on the other hand it is evident that Greek thinking was at least  influenced by philosophical ideas from Asia Minor, the Orient and India.

Recently one of you remarked "Eastern philosophy? You? But isn't that a lot of theology?" A good observation, which shows even more that I am in a difficult position philosophically.

This all may sound a little like "Don't do it…don't start this project!", but on the other hand it is an interesting challenge to put all my (and your, perhaps) biases to the test.

Besides, the distinction between philosophy and theology is typical for us. We can suspend that distinction and just talk about Eastern thinking.

It makes little sense to look down from great height on non Western philosophies and say "Hey, look there, that indian philosopher had the same ideas as David Hume." or things like that.

We may encounter similarities of course, but in the first place we must look at other philosophies on their own account as manifestations of other cultures.

This leads to an other difficulty. There is no objective standard to qualify this as true philosophy and that not. But yet you can not escape the fact that you have to take position.

Choices have to be made. Ideas have to be evaluated, otherwise we are running the risk of cultural relativism by saying that any philosophy is as good as any other…

As you see, and I don't know how you think about it, there are a number of hurdles to take and we need an open mind for this project.

Finally there is the question of "what exactly is meant by non Western philosophy?" Of course everybody immediately thinks of Chinese and Indian philosophy.

They certainly will be a major part of this project, but what about South America, Africa or the Arab world? Interesting question.

It will take some research, but I'll try to include as many non European, non Anglo-American philosophies as possible.

The Discussion

[13:18] herman Bergson: So much for my introduction :-)
[13:18] herman Bergson: Thank you
[13:18] Gemma Allen: well it will be something new for you to research
[13:18] Debbie DJ: Tat was the warning label on the front cover?
[13:19] .: Beertje :.: what about Australian natives? the aboriginals?
[13:19] herman Bergson smiles
[13:19] herman Bergson: More ore less..yes
[13:19] .: Beertje :.: they have a very ancient culture..there must be philosophers too
[13:19] Debbie DJ: Ok. Im still in, it will be fascinating to explore.
[13:19] herman Bergson: I think it is very difficult for me/us to really understand Eastern philosophy...
[13:19] herman Bergson: Yes it is Debbie....
[13:20] herman Bergson: The reading I am already doing promises that
[13:20] herman Bergson: At the moment I focus on Chinese thought....
[13:20] Lizzy Pleides: did I understand right that the distinction between philosophy and religion is only in the western area?
[13:20] Debbie DJ: The african philosophies are interesting for me too, obviously
[13:20] Gemma Allen: maybe we can help with the research too
[13:21] Debbie DJ: oh good question liz
[13:21] Gemma Allen: and send you some links
[13:21] herman Bergson: Sure Gemma...
[13:21] herman Bergson: To answer Lizzy....
[13:21] Bejiita Imako: this will be nice it feels like, and very exciting
[13:21] herman Bergson: that strict distinction between religion and ...say..scientific....epistemological thinking....
[13:22] herman Bergson: yes I think we invented that
[13:22] herman Bergson: You don't see that in Chinese thinking....
[13:22] Lizzy Pleides: religion is always a kind of mythology too
[13:22] .: Beertje :.: whispers..hello Rodney
[13:22] herman Bergson: There is a moment in history where you see it in Indian philosophy
[13:23] Rodney Handrick: Hi Beertje
[13:23] herman Bergson: an absolute denial of any theistic explanation of reality
[13:24] Debbie DJ: Are there any Chinese religions
[13:24] Debbie DJ: ?
[13:24] Taffy: western philosophy tends to think of god as a separate entity
[13:24] herman Bergson: that is hard to say.....
[13:24] herman Bergson: I mean...they had some idea of Heaven.....
[13:24] Debbie DJ: Buddhism isn't really a religion at all
[13:24] herman Bergson: even of a god....
[13:24] Bejiita Imako: need to check the subject up a bit for sure
[13:25] herman Bergson: but not really a personalized god....
[13:25] Bejiita Imako: i know a bit but its clearly different from our "ways"
[13:25] Gemma Allen: one can be any religion and also follow buddhism
[13:25] Taffy: from what I understand the eastern philosophies, people are part of the whole that is god
[13:25] Gemma Allen: as a way of life
[13:25] herman Bergson: This led to serious debates around 1650 between Rome and Jesuit missionaries in China...
[13:25] herman Bergson: What Chinese word to use for God?
[13:26] Debbie DJ: And indian religions are more about nature worship, and multiple gods
[13:26] herman Bergson: then that became even a competition between Jesuits and Dominicans in thosse days
[13:26] Debbie DJ: did they find a word for god herman
[13:27] Bejiita Imako: the word avatar comes from how their gods show themselves to us, like the shiva and other statues u see
[13:27] herman Bergson: Yes the poe finally took sides with the Dominicans :-)
[13:27] Merlin: We seem to be drifting onto religion again I think it is inseparable from philosophy
[13:27] Sigmund Oppenbaum: I'm not quite following, what became an issue for the Jesuits and the Dominicans?
[13:27] Gemma Allen: what did the dominicans say
[13:28] Debbie DJ: the word, and the word is god Sigmund
[13:28] herman Bergson: Yes Eastern philosophy you can not separate it
[13:28] Merlin: But I found some things said here about Buddhism doubtful
[13:28] Merlin: Ah ok
[13:28] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Thank you, Debbie
[13:28] herman Bergson: it was the word Shang Shi Sigmund.....
[13:29] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Thanks, Professor
[13:29] herman Bergson: But the Chinese used that for Heaven....not really meaning a personalized god...
[13:29] Bejiita Imako: ok
[13:29] herman Bergson: so you can not use that when translating the bible...
[13:29] herman Bergson: Rome finally settled for some other word....
[13:30] herman Bergson: which atm I do not recall :-)
[13:30] herman Bergson: The problem was that Chinese didn't like christianity at all....
[13:31] herman Bergson: Mainly because of the disrespect it showed for ancient Chinese tradition
[13:31] herman Bergson: and THAT is important to them....
[13:31] Merlin: when do you mean Herman?
[13:31] herman Bergson: You'll learn about that in on coming lectures :-)
[13:31] Gemma Allen: ancestors?
[13:31] herman Bergson: Oh I am talking about 1650 and later Merlin
[13:32] Merlin: When did the Chinese take a dislike to Christianity
[13:32] Merlin: ok ty
[13:32] herman Bergson: But there was the Ping revolution...1800 so or so I believe...
[13:32] Debbie DJ: Shangdi - means above emperor, and was used before Shung Tian (heaven)
[13:33] herman Bergson: and one western observer didn't believe that it were chinese christians here revolting...
[13:33] herman Bergson: wow...your Chinese is pretty good Debbie ^_^
[13:33] Debbie DJ: thanks prof (quitly closes google)
[13:34] herman Bergson: Yes...the transcription of Chinese Kanji in Romanji will be a puzzle now and then
[13:34] Gemma AllenGemma Allen GIGGLES!!
[13:34] Gemma Allen: ...LOL...
[13:34] herman Bergson: the English do it different from the Dutch for instance....
[13:34] Bejiita Imako: hahahahah
[13:35] herman Bergson: You get things like Lao-tze....or Laothze..or Lao-ze..
[13:35] herman Bergson: all meaning the same...
[13:35] herman Bergson: But we'll manage that I guess...
[13:36] herman Bergson: for instansce...
[13:36] .: Beertje :.: Shang-Chi (Chinese: 上氣; pinyin: shàng qì; literally "rising of the spirit")
[13:36] herman Bergson: I-Tjing....also know as Yin King...
[13:36] Bejiita Imako: ok
[13:36] Merlin: Yes it is largely because they have a different alphabet
[13:36] herman Bergson: That is the problem Merlin..they have no alphabet
[13:36] Merlin: Confuscius is something like Kung Fu Tsu
[13:37] herman Bergson: they have Kanji (characters) and its pronunciation
[13:37] Merlin: oh well you could say that yeah
[13:37] herman Bergson: ah jes...
[13:37] herman Bergson: yes
[13:37] Gemma Allen: they are characters
[13:37] Gemma Allen: thousands of them
[13:37] herman Bergson: to be precize Gemma....
[13:38] herman Bergson: a japanese primary schoolkid learns 1845 Kanji
[13:38] herman Bergson: and of course also all kinds of combinations of these 1845
[13:38] herman Bergson: enough to read the newspaper...
[13:38] Lizzy Pleides: 四十四只石狮子是死的 ?
[13:39] herman Bergson: but there are at least a 30 to 40 thousand Kanji
[13:39] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Very inefficient
[13:39] herman Bergson: Lizzy...
[13:39] herman Bergson: your sentence begins with 4 10 4 :-)
[13:39] .: Beertje :.: they are all dead Lizzy?
[13:39] Lizzy Pleides: no with 44
[13:40] Lizzy Pleides: yes Beertje
[13:40] .: Beertje :.: omg
[13:40] .: Beertje :.: poor lions
[13:40] herman Bergson: true :-))
[13:40] herman Bergson: anyway....
[13:40] Lizzy Pleides: it seems i have to learn Chinese
[13:40] herman Bergson: I think that htis is going to be an interesting journey
[13:40] Gemma Allen: forget it
[13:40] .: Beertje :.: I only know ni how
[13:41] .: Beertje :.: and 148 :)))))
[13:41] Bejiita Imako: indeed very interesting
[13:41] Bejiita Imako: ni hao u mean?
[13:41] .: Beertje :.: (my favorite meal)
[13:41] herman Bergson: my goodness...
[13:42] herman Bergson: everybody starts showing of their Chinese :-))
[13:42] Gemma Allen: not me
[13:42] .: Beertje :.: grins
[13:42] Bejiita Imako: hehee¨
[13:43] herman Bergson: ok then...
[13:43] .: Beertje :.: 赫尔曼是不是太糟糕,有更
[13:43] herman Bergson: You know what to expect....
[13:43] herman Bergson: next lecture will be delivered by Beertje in Chinese :-))
[13:43] Lizzy Pleides: what an exciting theme
[13:43] Gemma Allen: ♥ LOL ♥
[13:43] herman Bergson: seems she is fluent in it :-))
[13:44] herman Bergson: thank you all for your participation....
[13:44] Gemma Allen: well it is something to look forward to it all
[13:44] herman Bergson: unless there is still an unanswered question ?
[13:44] Debbie DJ: 六十六 - lets sit around the lecture and talk :)
[13:45] Debbie DJ: you can use your imagination to translate...
[13:45] Gemma Allen: ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
[13:45] herman Bergson: ok Debbie....after class :-)
[13:45] herman Bergson: Class dismissed :-))
[13:45] Lizzy Pleides: thank you Professor
[13:45] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Thank you, Professor
[13:45] .: Beertje :.: 感謝教訓赫爾曼
[13:45] Gemma Allen: i may be able to be here tuesday next week
[13:45] Debbie DJ: Thanks Herman...
[13:45] Gemma Allen: we will see
[13:45] Gemma Allen: Bye, Bye   
[13:45] Gemma Allen: for now
[13:45] Sigmund Oppenbaum: This is going to be interesting... a challenge
[13:45] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[13:45] Sigmund Oppenbaum: Good bye all
[13:45] herman Bergson: I'll keep my fingers crossed Gemma
[13:46] .: Beertje :.: bye bye all
[13:46] Merlin: Bye everyone
[13:46] Bejiita Imako: bye cu soon
[13:46] Bejiita Imako:
[13:46] Debbie DJ: Bye merlin.
[13:46] Lizzy Pleides: byee
[13:46] .: Beertje :.: have a goodnight all
[13:46] Debbie DJ: Nice turnout Herman. Clearly a popular topic
[13:46] Debbie DJ: Bye bbertje
[13:47] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[13:47] herman Bergson: I hope so Debbie :-)
[13:47] Taffy: yes I'm going now to look for my books on Chinese philosophy!
[13:47] Debbie DJ: Me too taffy...
[13:47] Debbie DJ: see you all next week.
[13:47] herman Bergson: ok Debbie
[13:47] Debbie DJ: btw herman - when is the summer recess?
[13:47] herman Bergson: July 1 Debbie
[13:47] herman Bergson: till September 1
[13:48] Debbie DJ: Much too long :)
[13:48] Debbie DJ: thanks.... you are brave taking this on...
[13:48] herman Bergson: I know..
[13:48] herman Bergson: I'll miss you ^_^
[13:48] Debbie DJ: :)
[13:48] Debbie DJ: Ill be around :)
[13:48] herman Bergson: and I can say hello now and then :-))
[13:49] Debbie DJ: And likewise me...
[13:49] herman Bergson: the funny thing is.....
[13:49] Debbie DJ: ok... cu soon, and have a great weekend
[13:49] herman Bergson: I am retired in you know...
[13:49] Debbie DJ: yes?
[13:49] herman Bergson: and yet it feels as vacation to me..those months :-)
[13:50] herman Bergson: didnt know?
[13:50] Debbie DJ: Old habits die very hard. I was an academic for 11 years.
[13:50] herman Bergson: I for 30 years :-)
[13:50] Debbie DJ: What a good life.
[13:50] herman Bergson: yes :-)
[13:51] herman Bergson: and my class here in SL still gives me the feeling that I am in the old routine :-)
[13:51] Debbie DJ: Well, you are. You get to work some, learn some, stretch your brain, and hangout with the bright students...
[13:51] Debbie DJ:  ✧✩**✩✧ G I G G L E S ✧✩**
[13:51] herman Bergson: indeed :-)
[13:52] herman Bergson: and always beautiful students too :-)
[13:52] Debbie DJ: You need a canteen at Wainscot - !!!!
[13:53] herman Bergson: No.....
[13:53] Debbie DJ: for endless cups of coffee and chats
[13:53] Debbie DJ: and a postgrad pub...
[13:53] herman Bergson: I like it quite here :-)
[13:54] Debbie DJ: I'm just Just reminiscing. - wouldn't really expect one
[13:54] Debbie DJ: Ok Professor - i must dash... I'm summoned :)
[13:55] herman Bergson: oh dear :-)
[13:55] Debbie DJ: byeeee.
[13:55] Debbie DJ: xxx
[13:55] herman Bergson: take care :-)

476: A conclusion of the Art Not to Be an Egoist

Is it true that the human being basically is a selfish animal and that everything else is just a thin layer of culture? Is that us,  as Ayn Rand and Josef Kirschner claim?

With this question I began the first lecture of this project: an extensive investigation of  human nature.

To cut it short: the answer on the question is for me a plain NO. Nor is the human being by nature inclined to use violence to get  things his way.

How should we look at life? What life fits human nature best? Here I could quote Plato and Aristotle, because they already answered this question,

but I'll quote Robert Skidelsky, (born 25 April 1939). He  is a British economic historian of Russian origin and the author of a major, award-winning, three-volume biography of British economist John Maynard Keynes (1883–1946).

- quote -
So what is to be done? First, we must convince ourselves that there is something called the good life, and that money is simply a means to it. 

To say that my purpose in life is to make more and more money is as insane as saying my purpose in eating is to get fatter and fatter. (…)

(..), unless we take a collective decision to get off the consumption treadmill we will never get to the point of saying “enough is enough”.
- end quote -

Utopian? No. Could a Cro-Magnon man, who lived a 40.000 years ago ever have imagined the world we live in now, the knowledge and science we have now?

Neither can we imagine the future, but so far the homo sapiens survived till now. And there are a lot of thinkers, economists, scientist, politicians, action groups, who pave the way for a possible future.

Human nature is not a destructive, but a constructive  feature of the homo sapiens. Let's take that for a start. However, there has to change a lot.

To begin with humanity as such. That is not a homogeneous group of individuals. While we live in a high tech society, others live in a world that resembles our Middle Ages and some still live like the Cro-Magnon.

Our brain is not a balanced unity. It is not a rational computer but emotion driven like we also see in the behavior chimpanzees and Bonobo monkeys. However, we have that extra, consciousness.

This makes us creatures that can learn new behavior. Like we have learnt not to murder each other because of different religious ideas. However, not yet everybody in this world has learnt that.

You may not believe it, but according to (evolutionary) psychologist Steven Pinker in his latest book "The Better Angels of Our Nature", mankind has become less violent through the ages.

I think, that I have given you enough arguments to prove that human nature is basically constructive, social and cooperative,  but from the Middle Ages to now is some 500 years, if you look at the present situation. 

So just give the homo sapiens time to realize that Aristotle was right, that he has to focus on a Good Life, which is something completely different from economic growth and material status.

This concludes this project. As final homework I strongly advise you to read and do more reading using that site as a starting point.

The next project will be on Non Western Philosophy. A challenge for me and , I guess, for you too, because I'll still look at Eastern philosophy with my Western eyes.

Main Resources:
Richard David Precht, Die Kunst kein Egoist zu sein (2012)
The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
The Discussion

[13:21] herman Bergson: Thank you ..the floor is yours
[13:21] Debbie DJ: wow.. thanks herman
[13:22] Ciska Riverstone: thanx herman
[13:22] Lizzy Pleides: thank you herman!
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: nice
[13:22] Loo Zeta-Ah: thanks
[13:22] Debbie DJ: Sidelsky sounds like a good thinker...
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: aaa yes
[13:22] Ciska Riverstone: and hi Bejiita
[13:22] Bejiita Imako: hi Ciska
[13:22] herman Bergson: Oh yes..check him out definitely Debbie
[13:22] herman Bergson: Harvard prof
[13:23] herman Bergson: you know....
[13:23] Loo Zeta-Ah: I was thinking about co-operation in terms of the miners that were trapped underground, but yet we have professionalized destruction and become detached from it, but can blow each other up spectaularly
[13:23] herman Bergson: we are in a moment of time where enough is enough indeed
[13:23] Bejiita Imako: ah
[13:23] Lizzy Pleides: I hardly can believe that mankind has become less violent
[13:24] Loo Zeta-AhLoo Zeta-Ah agrees with Lizzy
[13:24] herman Bergson: lots of researches has shown that in increase of income doen NOT imply an increase of happiness
[13:24] Bejiita Imako: its hard to think like that indeed with whats going on in syria mexico ect
[13:24] herman Bergson: Yes Lizzy....but it is true...
[13:25] Bejiita Imako: but also I've read some history and indeed there was lot of wars and similar in the middle ages
[13:25] Ciska Riverstone: yes - but its really might be us knowing it all...
[13:25] herman Bergson: if you look at the numbers...
[13:25] Ciska Riverstone: before people did not.
[13:25] Ciska Riverstone: wb debbie
[13:26] Bejiita Imako: however in some countries i see a fallback where religious extremists take over , like with Iran 1979, before then iran was developing, now is back in medieval ultra religious sharia and similar
[13:26] herman Bergson: Bejiita....
[13:27] herman Bergson: in our world of today the problem is ...the number of it...what is happening...
[13:27] Lizzy Pleides: the islam originally was very tolerant
[13:27] herman Bergson: And the worst thing are the Media...
[13:28] Ciska Riverstone: its always what people make of it... any religion....
[13:28] herman Bergson: there is nothing wrong with the islam Lizzy..
[13:28] Debbie DJ: the media are to blame for lots of our ills...
[13:28] herman Bergson: the biggest islam country is Indonesia..ever heard of?
[13:28] Loo Zeta-Ah: Islam = peace
[13:28] Debbie DJ: but we would be lost without news.
[13:28] Loo Zeta-Ah: it is extremism that is the issue
[13:28] Bejiita Imako: most muslims are good indeed, the prob is that those extremists make use of it the wrong way
[13:28] herman Bergson: what we are whitnissing is tribal conflicts...
[13:29] herman Bergson: prehistoric drives...
[13:29] Debbie DJ: Lets remind ourselves who has the most guns.
[13:29] Loo Zeta-Ah: Even Christian Extremists are violent if not physically then theologically
[13:29] Bejiita Imako:I've checked a bit and i think nowhere in the koran it says deprive women their rights start jihads and similar
[13:29] Debbie DJ: and who starts wars routinely?
[13:29] Lizzy Pleides: yes Debbie
[13:29] herman Bergson: Yes Loo...
[13:30] Bejiita Imako: so its a good religion in its basics i d say
[13:30] Bejiita Imako: islam
[13:30] herman Bergson: so the first thing that has to be removed from this earth is religious thinking!
[13:30] Loo Zeta-AhLoo Zeta-Ah will have to disagree ;
[13:30] Bejiita Imako: I prefer science and proof of stuff before religious thinking
[13:31] herman Bergson: If you only count the dead caused by religious differnces...
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: when someone can prove to me there is a god and show me i believe it, same with ghosts
[13:31] Debbie DJ: I dont really do God anymore :(
[13:31] Loo Zeta-Ah: But to section ourselves off under 'religion' is not right
[13:31] Bejiita Imako: =
[13:31] herman Bergson: But that is nonsense Bejiita...
[13:31] herman Bergson: You ask for a proof for what?
[13:32] herman Bergson: we are part of nature....
[13:32] herman Bergson: related evolutionary to other primates..
[13:32] herman Bergson: that is all..
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: a concrete proof like a being of that kind really is there, will be hard indeed
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: is there a god or is it just the laws of physics?
[13:32] herman Bergson: but what for, Bejiita..
[13:32] Bejiita Imako: dont know myself
[13:33] Lizzy Pleides: maybe you can replace the word God with the word Nature
[13:33] Bejiita Imako: that could be the thing to do yes
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: how do you know love exists Bejiita?
[13:33] herman Bergson: all chipms on this planet lived a happy life for centuries without any religion
[13:33] Debbie DJ: It is unimaginable that there is an old man who looks like us ruining our lives from afar, and laughing at our errors.
[13:33] Lizzy Pleides: that's a clichee debbie
[13:34] Loo Zeta-Ah: Eeeeekkk not how I see God
[13:34] Debbie DJ: well, its the simplification - there is some entity planning our universe???
[13:34] herman Bergson: There is not a single organism on this planet that shows religious ideas...
[13:34] herman Bergson: except us...
[13:34] Debbie DJ: us
[13:34] Loo Zeta-Ah: I am a Christian feminist the 'holy Spirit' in the bible is female named
[13:35] herman Bergson: thence..these ideas are only the creation of the extra of our brain
[13:35] Ciska Riverstone: so- still the question - how do you know love exists then herman?
[13:35] Debbie DJ: When god made white men she was only joking.
[13:35] Loo Zeta-Ah: it is Western patriarchy that has undermined the perception of God
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: tricky subject indeed, however take thunder for ex, i believe more in that particles rub against each other to create a high voltage then the wrath of a god, been proven that lightning is electricity, also the difference between warm and cold air is what create the winds
[13:35] Ciska Riverstone: love is a concept as god is - its just words we use for something we experience
[13:35] herman Bergson: Love exists Ciska....
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: yes
[13:35] Ciska Riverstone: sure
[13:35] Bejiita Imako: love is a nice feeling
[13:35] Bejiita Imako:
[13:35] herman Bergson: that is not our human speciality...
[13:35] Lizzy Pleides: ofc it does!
[13:36] herman Bergson: the elephant mother cant leave her dead calf...
[13:36] Debbie DJ: We often confuse love and sex and money.
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: you experience it
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: some people would say they experience god
[13:36] Ciska Riverstone: thats how you know
[13:36] herman Bergson: chimps respond to the dead body of a fellow chimp....they look....
[13:36] Bejiita Imako: hmm indeed
[13:36] Debbie DJ: like" I love that ferrari, i can get some girls with it"
[13:36] Bejiita Imako: bmaybee some people can sense stuff others cant
[13:36] Bejiita Imako: dont know
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: so... we are basically irritated by the word god
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: cause we know it in form of the old man
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: f.e.
[13:37] Debbie DJ: Yes ciska.
[13:37] Lizzy Pleides: true Ciska
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: or whatever
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: but when you look closer
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: its a concept
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: like love
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: or truth
[13:37] Debbie DJ: A bad concept. It makes us irresponsible, and intolerant
[13:37] Loo Zeta-Ah: Ohh dear I have to go as my daughter just joined Twitter and needing help eeeeekk!!!
[13:37] Ciska Riverstone: the problem kicks in
[13:38] Loo Zeta-Ah: Thanks
[13:38] Debbie DJ: Bye loo....
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: when people start to make rules from it and dominate
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: hehe ok
[13:38] herman Bergson: sorry Ciska...
[13:38] Bejiita Imako: bye then loo
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: bye loo
[13:38] Lizzy Pleides: TC Loo
[13:38] herman Bergson: But I don't get it....
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: smiles
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: you will
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: you are going to do eastern philosophy
[13:38] herman Bergson: what is this about love,,,
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: ;)
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: my thesis is
[13:39] herman Bergson: that is a normal social behavior...a bonding between is wolves apes or men
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: that its a problem of language really
[13:39] herman Bergson: can't be...
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: as people would say their relationship to god is a bonding
[13:39] herman Bergson: language is just our creation...
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: a bonding to what is good and right
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: f,.e.
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: thats just one way to see it
[13:40] Debbie DJ: so what is good and right?
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: i'll give you someone who explains it perfectly
[13:40] Debbie DJ: Herman explained ethics and morals very carefully
[13:40] Ciska Riverstone: just the first minutes from this:
[13:41] herman Bergson: ok..lets check out this youtube for a moment...
[13:41] herman Bergson: class suppended :-))
[13:41] Bejiita Imako: oki
[13:41] Ciska Riverstone: just first minute actually
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: thats what happening when people make religion from god
[13:42] herman Bergson: message 'blocke dplugin'..
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: aww - pitty ;)
[13:42] Ciska Riverstone: the problem is people feel love
[13:42] herman Bergson: to cut it short...
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: but they can feel anything else - like something they call god too
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: then someone comes and makes a concept from it
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: to make it more explainable
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: thats religion
[13:43] Ciska Riverstone: and that makes the problems. then
[13:43] Debbie DJ: Baloney.
[13:44] herman Bergson: relgion is a kind o behavior of people that transcends reality...and is a cause of a lot of ...well to sya it polite ..quarrel
[13:45] herman Bergson: Religion is a product of huma culture...
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: yes
[13:45] Debbie DJ: yes.
[13:45] herman Bergson: that is all...
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: cause we need words to communicate
[13:45] herman Bergson: there is no metaphysical reality behind it what so ever
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: but god is not religion
[13:45] herman Bergson: no ciska...
[13:45] Debbie DJ: in the beginning there was the word?
[13:45] Ciska Riverstone: thats just a word for something which cannot be explained
[13:46] herman Bergson: because we want to feel as a group...
[13:46] Bejiita Imako: religion is our way to try dealing with a god
[13:46] herman Bergson: it is a socially bonding mechanism...
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: thats religion yes
[13:46] herman Bergson: the US ....and the OTHERS situation
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: but the feeling before
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: where it comes from
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: we call god
[13:46] herman Bergson: no....
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: and we make a religion around it
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: either islam
[13:46] Lizzy Pleides: religion tries to explain what we we can't explain
[13:46] herman Bergson: we call if defense...
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: or christian etc
[13:46] Debbie DJ: God is different. He is Omnipotent.
[13:47] herman Bergson: rpotection of the group
[13:47] Bejiita Imako: yes how does something like that gets started, some one must have seen something and created from it
[13:47] herman Bergson: we call it survival of the group..
[13:47] Ciska Riverstone: right lizzy - thats how i see it
[13:47] Ciska Riverstone: its a concept
[13:47] herman Bergson: we call it US!
[13:47] Ciska Riverstone: hahaha
[13:47] Debbie DJ: So any god is good then ciska?
[13:48] herman Bergson: Yes Debbie....
[13:48] Bejiita Imako: for ex who wrote the bible, did he got the things in the bible from god or just made it up?, the one who wrote the first bible?
[13:48] Bejiita Imako: noone knowa
[13:48] Bejiita Imako: knows
[13:48] Ciska Riverstone: no debbie
[13:48] herman Bergson: as long ads it represents the US feeling...
[13:48] Debbie DJ: isn't god just another word for love then?
[13:48] herman Bergson: within the clan yes Debbie
[13:48] Ciska Riverstone: god is a word for something we cannot explain but feel
[13:49] Debbie DJ: *•.¸MwAHh¸.•*
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: then we give it a word
[13:49] Debbie DJ: i mean hmmm
[13:49] Debbie DJ:  ✧✩**✩✧ G I G G L E S ✧✩**
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: and from that on
[13:49] herman Bergson: sorry Cuiska..
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: we start to define
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: thats religion
[13:49] herman Bergson: but that is not really philosophical..
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: heheh
[13:49] Ciska Riverstone: maybe not
[13:49] herman Bergson: it is not
[13:50] herman Bergson: no maybe possible here
[13:50] Ciska Riverstone: its a bit more chomsky
[13:50] Debbie DJ: Read Dawkins and The God Delusion... it will help you understand why having God around is a bad idea.
[13:50] Lizzy Pleides: nothing is wrong with religion as long as politicians don't use it for their purposes
[13:50] herman Bergson: Well Dawkins goes in too hard maybe...but he has a point
[13:50] Debbie DJ: Lizzy - nearly all wars are based on religeon
[13:50] Debbie DJ: and each army prays to god for help
[13:50] Bejiita Imako: letting religion rule a country is a reallu big dilemma inmdeed
[13:50] Lizzy Pleides: that's what I said
[13:51] herman Bergson: Just hold on fr a momnt....
[13:51] Debbie DJ: yes.. sorry.
[13:51] Ciska Riverstone: there is a difference between god and religion
[13:51] herman Bergson: be silent...and think....
[13:51] Ciska Riverstone: religion creates the tribe wars
[13:51] herman Bergson: waht are you....?
[13:51] Debbie DJ: ha ha.
[13:51] herman Bergson: a physical body...
[13:51] Debbie DJ: in the name of god.
[13:52] herman Bergson: be silent I said Debbie !
[13:52] herman Bergson: just start fromwhat you know..
[13:52] herman Bergson: you are a body ..
[13:52] herman Bergson: an organism..
[13:52] herman Bergson: whenyou look at evolution you understand tyour origing...
[13:52] herman Bergson: then what..?
[13:53] herman Bergson: where does that god idea come from???
[13:53] herman Bergson: makes no sense at all
[13:53] herman Bergson: UNLESS...
[13:53] herman Bergson: you look how our brain is wired...
[13:53] herman Bergson: the fears..
[13:53] herman Bergson: the incertainty..
[13:54] herman Bergson: all the things we dont know.....
[13:54] herman Bergson: then our fantasy.....
[13:54] herman Bergson: there MUST be one who knows it all
[13:54] herman Bergson: nonsesne...
[13:55] herman Bergson: for where did this one get all his knowledge from..and so on
[13:55] herman Bergson: we dont know everything...
[13:55] herman Bergson: but what problemis that....
[13:56] herman Bergson: we are looking for a good life on thiis earth....
[13:56] herman Bergson: and some of us have a good live...
[13:56] herman Bergson: allyou who sit there...
[13:56] herman Bergson: do you need more?
[13:56] herman Bergson: I dont...
[13:57] herman Bergson: enough is enough...!
[13:57] Bejiita Imako: im sattisfied with all i got
[13:57] Bejiita Imako:
[13:57] Debbie DJ: God must have come from the dinosaurs who were dominant here for 135 Million years, before God made adam 5000 years ago.
[13:58] Bejiita Imako: and god created the world, they used god as an explanation for when everything started and so
[13:58] herman Bergson: sorry Debbie but we were already around 350000 years before adam showed up
[13:58] herman Bergson: 35000
[13:58] Debbie DJ: True, but dinosaurs dominated for 135 Million years....
[13:59] Bejiita Imako: becuase then they could make a definition that if god created the world he also had the control over weather eartquakes, the great flood and things like that
[13:59] herman Bergson: Well that must have been then before god was here Debbie :-)
[13:59] Lizzy Pleides: I don't imagine God as an old wise man but i know that we are living is a world with priciples and rules of nature
[13:59] Ciska Riverstone: Hi Rodney
[13:59] herman Bergson: never thought about that :-)
[13:59] Rodney Handrick: Hi Ciska
[14:00] Bejiita Imako: hi Rodney
[14:00] Ciska Riverstone: Me neither Lizzy
[14:00] Rodney Handrick: Hi Bejiita
[14:00] .: Beertje :.: hello Rodney
[14:00] Debbie DJ: Hi rodney
[14:00] Rodney Handrick: Hii Beertie
[14:00] herman Bergson: Oh yes Lizzy...absolutely...
[14:00] Rodney Handrick: Hi Debbie
[14:00] herman Bergson: Just one simpel principle...
[14:01] herman Bergson: you can not go out and just kill somebody (for fun or whatever reason)
[14:01] herman Bergson: Stronger argument even...
[14:01] Bejiita Imako: so very true
[14:01] Bejiita Imako: and logocal
[14:01] Debbie DJ: That doesn't hold anymore.
[14:02] herman Bergson: there is no reason for violence at all to settle problems...
[14:02] Debbie DJ: one question - UAV
[14:02] herman Bergson: there are sociesties on thsi earth that do not know violence...or only minimal
[14:02] herman Bergson: k Debbie
[14:03] Rodney Handrick: what societies would they be...?
[14:03] herman Bergson: We are capable to live together on this earth without violence...
[14:03] Debbie DJ: UAV drones are permitted to kill targets remotely.
[14:04] herman Bergson:
[14:04] Debbie DJ: and without culpability apparently.
[14:04] herman Bergson: for you Rodney
[14:04] Rodney Handrick: I live near the Amish
[14:04] Guestboook van tipjar stand: Lizzy Pleides donated L$100. Thank you very much, it is much appreciated!
[14:04] Rodney Handrick: thanks Herman
[14:05] Rodney Handrick: those societies are not that progressive
[14:05] herman Bergson: the main conclusion for me of this project is: WE HAVE TO LEARN...
[14:05] Rodney Handrick: new ideas are "not" taken well!
[14:06] herman Bergson: and acept that we are part of nature...
[14:06] herman Bergson: and thsu drop all that religious ideas
[14:06] herman Bergson: We are NOT special on this palnet..just a product of evolution...
[14:07] Rodney Handrick: agreed
[14:07] Bejiita Imako: yes indeed
[14:07] Lizzy Pleides: it is probably already a religious idea that we are a part of nature ??
[14:07] herman Bergson: and as such....just a next stage of development of the organisn homo sapiens on this globe
[14:07] Debbie DJ: Herman, this series has been intruiging, and very thought provoking. You have shown me hope, and done so without using mumbo jumbo. Thank you , and i will be back for the next series.
[14:08] herman Bergson: Thank you Debbie...
[14:08] Bejiita Imako: yes same for me
[14:08] herman Bergson: You made my day!
[14:08] Lizzy Pleides: yes that was a wonderful series!
[14:08] Bejiita Imako: yes
[14:08] Bejiita Imako: very
[14:08] Debbie DJ: :)
[14:08] Bejiita Imako:
[14:08] Rodney Handrick: you know me Herman...:-)
[14:08] herman Bergson: thank you all for your participation
[14:08] Debbie DJ: Herman
[14:09] Ciska Riverstone: thanx herman
[14:09] Bejiita Imako: YAY! (yay!)
[14:09] Bejiita Imako: this have been awesome
[14:09] herman Bergson: Rodney..that you are here...that is really th eultimate for me :-))
[14:09] Bejiita Imako: looks forward to next chapter
[14:09] Bejiita Imako: will be really interesting
[14:09] .: Beertje :.: thank you Herman I'm looking forward to the next series
[14:10] Debbie DJ: And thanks class for the lively engagements, and patience with my rantings...
[14:10] herman Bergson: Thank you all
[14:10] herman Bergson: Classs dismissed :-))
[14:10] Debbie DJ: when does the next series start?
[14:10] Ciska Riverstone: have a great day or night everyone
[14:10] Bejiita Imako: same to u all
[14:10] Bejiita Imako:
[14:10] Lizzy Pleides: you to Ciska
[14:10] Bejiita Imako: cu next time
[14:10] Lizzy Pleides: byee
[14:10] Rodney Handrick: you too
[14:10] Ciska Riverstone: byee
[14:10] herman Bergson: Next Thurssday goes on..:-))
[14:10] .: Beertje :.: bye Ciska
[14:10] Bejiita Imako: bye herman and all
[14:10] Bejiita Imako:
[14:10] .: Beertje :.: bye bejiita
[14:11] Debbie DJ: cool. cu thursday Herman... night night.
[14:11] herman Bergson: ok
[14:11] .: Beertje :.: goodnight Herman