Sunday, April 2, 2017

649: What is the meaning of life when you are 92…..?

When I play a game of chess and you ask: Why did you move your rook? , I might answer…because then I can checkmate my opponent in two moves.
Then asking why I”d like to checkmate my opponent would be a silly question within the context of the chess game. The checkmate is a goal in itself.
It means that the series of questions of “Why…Because” can come to an end, because we have reached a final “Because”,
a final justification or explanation why something is the case. We did this by looking into the past to find a meaning of life.
We asked why we were born, then why our parents were born, and so on back to the question of why there are people at all 
and ended up at the Big Bang and the creation myths of Genesis. That series ended, however, without revealing the MEANING of life.
As an answer we got explanations of the facticity of our existence, not of the purpose of it all. But we love purposes, for they give meaning.
The Why / Because questioning can be connected with the timeline. In the previous lectures we looked into the past and didn’t find our answer.
So maybe we should follow the timeline into the future with our Why / Because questions. The moment we run into a question 
which is in fact to silly or dumb to ask, we may have found the final goal we are searching for.
Why do you study? Because I want a good job. Why a good job? Because it pays well. Why do you want to be paid well? Because then I can support a family, and so on, and so on…..
But here we run into a problem. When does this series of questions end? It has to, for otherwise the goal of life would be out of our reach forever….
A lot of movies have as a plot the thesis of the main character: My only purpose in life is to find the murderer of my wife and kill him.
The end of the movie is rather satisfactory, when the main character dies in the process of killing the murderer.
Mission accomplished. Time to die in peace. But what when the main character stays alive at the end of the movie?
If life eventually is about reaching the final end, what is left to do if that goal is reached and we live on? 
If life’s goal has been achieved, it can no longer guide our actions and apparently leaves us with nothing to live for.
If the meaning of life is connected with achieving a certain goal, then after reaching it, there is emptiness.
You’d say, come on, just set your next target, but when it is reached we are again confronted with this ultimate emptiness.
This made me think of a political debate that is going on in the Netherlands at the moment. It is about the concept of “a completed life”.
It means, that people of high age are done with life. People who long for that morning on which they do not wake up anymore.
So, in fact  these people have lost sight on any meaning of life and wish to end it. This concerns healthy people who only experience the consequences of high age, e.g. isolation and lack of mobility.
Suicide is not an option socially. Now one political party has proposed a legalisation of helping people in such a situation to end their life.
Some parties agree with the legalisation, other, especially christian parties, are strongly against  the proposition.
Here we are confronted with serious philosophical questions. Is experiencing no purpose in life at high age a justification for legally helping people to end such a life?
Is it a basic right of the individual, to decide about his own (time of) death and asking society to assist him in it?
Or are we facing here the outcome of culture, which adores being young and dynamic and regards the elder people as a (financial) burden?
What is the meaning of life when you are 92…..?
Thank you for your attention…^_^

The Discussion

[13:17] Daruma Boa (daruma): Puh. Difficult topic;-)
[13:17] herman Bergson: Yes indeed Daruma
[13:17] Daruma Boa (daruma): I think its very very personal to decide of someones death
[13:17] CONNIE Eichel: hmmm, humans are not objects, they can't be treated like obsolete stuff, i think
[13:18] herman Bergson: They cant indeed but we do, CONNIE
[13:18] CONNIE Eichel: yes, bad that
[13:18] herman Bergson: When talking about the elder people in politics, they only talk about the costs of healthcare
[13:18] Daruma Boa (daruma): I think its very important t make contact with the one who wants to die
[13:18] Daruma Boa (daruma): that cannot be a overall decisio
[13:18] Daruma Boa (daruma): decision
[13:19] Daruma Boa (daruma): in Switzerland they have such a law
[13:19] herman Bergson: I have a friend....a lady of week she''ll become 96.....
[13:19] herman Bergson: and she longs for the eternal sleep
[13:19] herman Bergson: yet she has a quite reasonable life..also socially
[13:20] CONNIE Eichel: too many lonely people nowadays, that's the problem i think... in the past, with big families, having a social environment, it helped you to find reasons for living
[13:20] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): maybe she is tired of living
[13:20] herman Bergson: Do we loose sight of a purpose  in life when we grow (very) old?
[13:20] herman Bergson: she is Beertje
[13:20] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): my mother in law is 97, she is tired too
[13:20] herman Bergson: But why doesnt she have a purpose of life, why has life lost its meaning for her?
[13:21] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): i can imagine her longing for eternal sleep
[13:21] CONNIE Eichel: it is like being immortal... it is worthless being immortal, if you will see your beloved ones die
[13:21] herman Bergson: Read Simone de Beauvoir, CONIE....Nobody is Immortal....
[13:21] Daruma Boa (daruma): I think we loose te contact to the "normal" life when we get very old. Life goes on adn mostly we do not follow all new developments, when we get old
[13:21] herman Bergson: and youget that story
[13:21] Daruma Boa (daruma): thats also hard to follow
[13:22] herman Bergson: But, Daruma.....
[13:22] Daruma Boa (daruma): contact with the young and new things I mean
[13:22] herman Bergson: just imagine that what in fact happens is that the older you get the more you are shifted aside....
[13:22] CONNIE Eichel: being important for someone, keeps you alive too... again, too many lonely people
[13:22] Daruma Boa (daruma): that’s true
[13:23] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah
[13:23] herman Bergson: isn’t society itself creating this willingness to end life at old age
[13:23] Daruma Boa (daruma): and thats what I mean, also when you WANT to have contact, its hard to keep up with
[13:23] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): shifted aside because of economics
[13:23] herman Bergson: because the older you get the more you see yourself as a burden...that is how you are in the news....
[13:24] herman Bergson: what do I cost society.....
[13:24] skeleton Ghost: society IS creating this willingness, it began with the decapitation of the grandparents from the household
[13:24] herman Bergson: not...what do I mean to society counts
[13:24] herman Bergson: ahh ...good point Skeleton
[13:24] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): it's always the money
[13:25] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): unfortunatley money is everything today
[13:25] CONNIE Eichel: yes, money, and the "being productive" ideas
[13:25] herman Bergson: But what does this observation tell us about our quest after the meaning of life?
[13:25] herman Bergson: in a way it worries me....
[13:25] CONNIE Eichel: yes, and without spirituality... it gets worst
[13:26] Ciska Riverstone: economy is the new religion
[13:26] Ciska Riverstone: that's what its telling us
[13:26] herman Bergson: Yes CONNIE...somehow we have a need of a transcendental purpose, meaning of life....
[13:26] Daruma Boa (daruma): And I think we cannot let the "economy" win.
[13:26] CONNIE Eichel: yep
[13:26] herman Bergson: something to look forward to..or as a light on our path to guide us
[13:26] Daruma Boa (daruma): We are the people. And I hope, tzhat there are enough who have better  ideas in life
[13:27] herman Bergson: There are, Daruma....
[13:27] Daruma Boa (daruma): a but do they raise their voices?
[13:27] herman Bergson: More and more we see the bankrupt of the homo economicus....
[13:27] Daruma Boa (daruma): and life a life to follow?
[13:27] herman Bergson: it takes time Daruma....
[13:28] herman Bergson: lifetimes, generations
[13:28] Daruma Boa (daruma): ja i know;-) this is what I tell day by day myself
[13:28] Daruma Boa (daruma): true
[13:29] herman Bergson: History has demonstrated that ideologies and religions collapse eventually...
[13:29] herman Bergson: thousands of gods are already forgotten....
[13:30] herman Bergson: Ciska advised em the read the book The AGE of NOTHING by Paul Watson....
[13:30] Daruma Boa (daruma): yes, soetes i a afraid that we have to have another war again, to get down on or knees again.
[13:30] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): what does the life of humans mean for the earth?
[13:30] herman Bergson: Is right here on my desk :-)
[13:31] herman Bergson: Oh…and for your information......
[13:31] herman Bergson: I gonna read this book the coming week on Schiermonnikoog :-)
[13:32] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): :)))
[13:32] herman Bergson: Which classes next week..I take a little break :-)
[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aa ok
[13:32] Daruma Boa (daruma): ah ha-)
[13:32] CONNIE Eichel: oh, ok
[13:32] Ciska Riverstone: happy islanding herman ;)
[13:32] herman Bergson: I certainly will Ciska :-)
[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa have a good time over there then
[13:32] Daruma Boa (daruma): you will be in island?
[13:33] herman Bergson: yes Daruma
[13:33] Daruma Boa (daruma): col
[13:33] Daruma Boa (daruma): o
[13:33] herman Bergson: It is :-)
[13:33] CONNIE Eichel: greetings for Bjork!
[13:33] Daruma Boa (daruma): My boyfriend have been there and he liked it a lot
[13:33] Daruma Boa (daruma): has
[13:33] Ciska Riverstone: island as in insel
[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): seems a nice place fr sure
[13:33] herman Bergson: Who is Bjork CONNIE?
[13:34] CONNIE Eichel: oh, the singer, dont you know her?
[13:34] Guestboook van tipjar stand: Daruma Resident donated L$51. Thank you very much, it is much appreciated!
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa she is amazing
[13:34] herman Bergson: I am not going to ICELAND :-)
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hahahah
[13:34] CONNIE Eichel: oh, hehe
[13:34] herman Bergson: but to the island Schiermonnikoog :-)
[13:34] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): at Schiermonnikoog?
[13:34] CONNIE Eichel: no greetings then, hehe
[13:34] herman Bergson: no greetings...I am sorry
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i was about to go to iceland when they had flights from my city but then thy movd that to arlanda stockholm instead
[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): damn
[13:35] CB Axel: I'm picturing Herman on a beach in his dapper suit and smoking his pipe. °͜°
[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): had been an easy way to finally see a geyser up close
[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and the place in general
[13:35] herman Bergson: Smoking on a beach in the stormy wind is no option CB :-)
[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:36] CB Axel: °͜°
[13:36] herman Bergson: At least I get some extra time to think about the meaning of life...
[13:36] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): niet tegen de wind in roken..
[13:36] herman Bergson: As we saw today..looking for it in the past or in the future presents a problem
[13:37] herman Bergson: neither of the two offers us a meaning, a purpose...but only the facticity of life
[13:37] oola Neruda: Ekhart Tolle
[13:37] Daruma Boa (daruma): ;)
[13:37] herman Bergson: who may that be oola?
[13:37] Daruma Boa (daruma): An Author
[13:37] Daruma Boa (daruma): A german one
[13:38] oola Neruda: he talks about living in the NOW
[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): so we have to search for the meaning of life in the present?
[13:38] CB Axel: Tolle writes about being in the moment.
[13:38] herman Bergson: THAT is an interesting conclusion oola....
[13:38] Daruma Boa (daruma): ja Beertje i guess thats themost importasnt thing. living here and now
[13:38] Ciska Riverstone: (cause thats all u ever have)
[13:38] herman Bergson: Because...where to look for the meaning of life....
[13:38] herman Bergson: it might be in the NOW indeed...
[13:39] oola Neruda: in being conscious every moment
[13:39] Daruma Boa (daruma): yes we loose a lot the moment now in life. We life mostly yesterday and tomorrow
[13:39] herman Bergson: We'll look into that option in the coming lectures....
[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): tomorrow will never be here
[13:39] Ciska Riverstone: and in fear which is a difficult state for our brains
[13:40] herman Bergson: But don't cheer too quickly here...
[13:40] oola Neruda: to me, true ART is being conscious of the moment... all residue from that experience is exactly that... residue
[13:40] oola Neruda: evidence
[13:41] herman Bergson: For life isn’t just a happens in time.....
[13:41] herman Bergson: Somehow we have to deal with a past - now -furute timeline
[13:41] Daruma Boa (daruma): yes, it’s the moment
[13:42] herman Bergson: What we do now has consequences for tomorrow, which does not exists yet at the moemnt....
[13:42] herman Bergson: yet tomorrow is already shaped byour now
[13:43] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): but tomorrow is never here
[13:43] herman Bergson: I guess we have to think this over carefully
[13:43] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): because then its today
[13:43] herman Bergson: Tomorrow is never here indeed Beertje untill you wake up with that huge hangover :-)
[13:44] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): how did you know I had one?
[13:44] CONNIE Eichel: :)
[13:44] skeleton Ghost: tomorrow aint here till one day the state is executing the elderly
[13:44] herman Bergson smiles
[13:44] Daruma Boa (daruma): True, we do not have to think too much in life. Our feelings are the most important guidline in life
[13:44] Ciska Riverstone: tolle makes the difference between reality and being in the brain - being in the brain is just toolwork - nice to have - but tookwork - so you can decide easier when u in a moment... if it stops you from deciding easier u use the tool wrong - kind of
[13:44] Daruma Boa (daruma): they will guide us. I am pretty sure
[13:45] Daruma Boa (daruma): Ja ist the "Bauchgefühl" in German^^^
[13:45] Daruma Boa (daruma): german
[13:45] herman Bergson: Sounds a bit like Kierkegaard....we ahve to look into this Ciska :-)
[13:45] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): ich verstehe...
[13:46] Daruma Boa (daruma): ;-)
[13:46] herman Bergson: You have all kinds of "Bauchs"....:-)
[13:46] Ciska Riverstone: well he is based in  modern zen buddhism  fuels it with a special language ( I have my troubles with) and a bit of Kierkegaard might shine in there ;)
[13:46] herman Bergson: bellies
[13:46] Daruma Boa (daruma): ja bellie feeling^^^
[13:47] herman Bergson: that is an interesting statement Daruma....
[13:47] herman Bergson: I believe feelings....
[13:48] herman Bergson: It means that you relate a cognitive act of believing to feelings.....
[13:48] Daruma Boa (daruma): humans are based on feelings
[13:48] Daruma Boa (daruma): not on facts
[13:48] herman Bergson: which might mean that cognition preceeds feeling...:-)
[13:48] oola Neruda: or vice versa
[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah
[13:48] herman Bergson: so yet the primacy of the ratio Daruma?
[13:49] Daruma Boa (daruma): we have also a brain and ratio to sort out this feeligs. thats true.
[13:49] Daruma Boa (daruma): but we mostly act because of our feelings
[13:49] Daruma Boa (daruma): mostly
[13:50] herman Bergson: I agree with that Daruma :-))
[13:50] Ciska Riverstone: (we rationalize those later on ;) )
[13:50] Daruma Boa (daruma): me too
[13:50] herman Bergson: IS is a misconception to think that homo sapiens is a rational being :-))
[13:50] Daruma Boa (daruma): and thats what makes life so beautiful. we are no ratinal computers
[13:51] Daruma Boa (daruma): rational
[13:51] herman Bergson: far from that...
[13:51] herman Bergson: to compare the human brain with a computer is the silliest thing ever
[13:51] Daruma Boa (daruma): and I think we have to learn to use this "power" of feelings
[13:51] herman Bergson: it is not an information processing machine
[13:52] CONNIE Eichel: we are not a turing machine :)
[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): not alike even, well along from government people following the law book like a computer blindly follow its software evn its full of ugs
[13:52] herman Bergson: Indeed CONNIE ^_^
[13:52] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): a computer can not compare with our brain
[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): bugs
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): for example, here in sweden many foreign people living here and having a good work sometimes even top jobs are being expelled from here because the employer have missed a detail somewhere at the moment
[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): thats just totally unhuman
[13:54] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and then they just say "it says this in the rules"
[13:54] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): without thinking themselves
[13:54] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): thats really sad
[13:54] herman Bergson: Same here in the Netherlands Bejiita....
[13:54] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): many working on Spotify for ex will be expelled from here for tht reason
[13:54] oola Neruda: hah... trump could teach them how to not follow rules.. .. and get away with it
[13:54] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): lik its their fault
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and even they have lived here for sometimes over 10 years
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): like they are 2nd class people
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i dont get it
[13:55] herman Bergson: I guess, it is time to end our discussion :-)
[13:55] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aa i have some friends calling for me now at an event
[13:56] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): have a good time now Herman
[13:56] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:56] herman Bergson: So week no Philosophy Class.....
[13:56] CONNIE Eichel: yes, enjoy Herman
[13:56] CB Axel: I hope you have a lovely holiday, Herman. °͜°
[13:56] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): time to go to sleep:)
[13:56] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cu again when you are back
[13:56] oola Neruda: have a great vacation
[13:56] Daruma Boa (daruma): happy holidays!
[13:56] herman Bergson: Thank you all again for your participation....
[13:56] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): fijne vakantie:)
[13:56] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):
[13:56] Ciska Riverstone: have a good week everyone
[13:56] herman Bergson: Class dismissed...:-))
[13:56] Ciska Riverstone: happy holiday herman
[13:56] skeleton Ghost: have a nice time!
[13:56] CONNIE Eichel: happy holidays!
[13:57] herman Bergson: Thanx Ciska....
[13:57] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lekker uitwaaien op Schier:)
[13:57] CONNIE Eichel: byeeee!
[13:57] herman Bergson: Got a lot of reading to do....
[13:57] herman Bergson: Watson is 612 pages!
[13:57] Daruma Boa (daruma): slaap lekker!
[13:57] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): :)
[13:57] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): welterusten:)
[13:57] Daruma Boa (daruma): ;-)
[13:58] Daruma Boa (daruma): bis bald!

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