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Case ([personal profile] case) wrote in [community profile] fandomsecrets2015-09-24 06:55 pm

[ SECRET POST #3186 ]

⌈ Secret Post #3186 ⌋

Warning: Some secrets are NOT worksafe and may contain SPOILERS.



[Steven Universe]


[Kushiel's Legacy and Harry Potter]


[Gravity Falls]


[Lacuna Coil]


06. [huge]
[Youtube Sam and Nia]


07. [huge]
[Austin Mahone]


[Eddie Izzard]




[Kristen Bell, House of Lies, OP warned for nudity]


[The Great Mouse Detective, linked for porn (illustrated, furry)]


Secrets Left to Post: 01 pages, 014 secrets from Secret Submission Post #455.
Secrets Not Posted: [ 0 - broken links ], [ 0 - not!secrets ], [ 0 - not!fandom ], [ 0 - too big ], [ 0 - repeat ].
Current Secret Submissions Post: here.
Suggestions, comments, and concerns should go here.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 12:50 am (UTC)(link)
Imagine you were talking to someone who said to you: "I don't see any reason why I should be good. I don't see any reason not to take actions that benefit me but harm others, even if I can get away with it. Similarly, I feel no empathy for people in pain, and no need to help people who are suffering. What reason is there why I ought to do these things?"

What argument would you make to try to convince this person they're wrong? Or do you think they're right?
kaijinscendre: (Default)

[personal profile] kaijinscendre 2015-09-25 12:56 am (UTC)(link)
I can't think of an argument unless the thing they are doing is illegal. If they have no empathy, there is no point.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 01:29 am (UTC)(link)
also being kind to others can help you out in tricky situations:

people who have zero reasons to hate you and several reasons to like you are more likely to come to your aid should you need it, and and might very well step up to defend you if you're in danger

/er, also not a sociopath! just gave this too much thought

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 01:33 am (UTC)(link)
Yeah as long as you are being observed or live around other people or in a social group, contributing to that gets you goodwill and a boosted reputation allowing you to take advantage of more people. So long as it doesn't incur you a significant time cost or is out of the way for you, it helps to do good things in front of other people so they like you and will do stuff for you in turn.

You can even see this in RPGs sometimes; my most evil bloodmage Dragon Age warden actually did a lot of good acts because people were watching or it'd net him goodwill (why desecrate the ashes when looking like the guy who went to the holy site and saved an arl will look so much better) but was 100% ok with having Caridin die and Branka win because the only people who would know what went down would be the companions. Meanwhile the actually good, noble Dalish elf I had completely fucked over a lot of Ferelden because she wouldn't compromise on points of honor and always Did The Right Thing as she saw it.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 02:06 am (UTC)(link)
Yeah, it works better seeing it as a goodwill meter rather than a personal morality meter. I actually like roleplay game systems like VtM because they have the dual thing where you have humanity and masquerade breaking as measuring both what you do and how people view what you do. Though granted, the kind of thing you mention isn't too far off from reality in some ways - big well known faces of the community who do a lot of charity work can be dicks in their own home and get clean away with it, like the Texas judge who was beating his daughter - that wasn't a one off incident.

Anyway, as someone who is pretty self interested and doesn't see themselves as good, if you want to get in a position where there are more options for you to enrich yourself, doing a couple of good things here and there certainly does help. It doesn't mean you should always pick the good option, but just be smart about it. Also, what is viewed as 'good' is totally relative to the kind of community or culture you're in. It's like honour killings! You net a lot of understanding from your own cultural group, but if that cultural group happens to be in the minority and they don't understand why you see that as the good and right thing to do...

I think like in order to have any good (heh) discussion on this, OP - or whoever - needs to define exactly what they mean as 'good'. Is it 'selfless'? Something like being willing to take on the disapproval of the wider community to kill your child because they were dishonored by having sex before marriage could in theory be seen as selfless. And no doubt the person doing it would see it as good. See: Abraham and killing his kid, totally viewed as a 100% good thing by tons of people, just extend it out to modern times and you can understand where that kind of thing comes from. But at the same time loads of other people wouldn't view that sort of action as a good thing, so we're left a little confused as to just what that means anyway.


(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 02:07 am (UTC)(link)
Oops, I mean Abraham and being like totally willing to kill his kid because God told him that was the thing to do, not Abraham actually going through with it.

Re: sameanon

(Anonymous) - 2015-09-25 02:27 (UTC) - Expand

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 01:34 am (UTC)(link)
I'm looking for any answers people give! I think it's interesting. I had moral arguments in mind, or I suppose any other arguments to the person that I might be compelling, but I'm also interested in anything else people think.

My concern with self-interest arguments is - for one thing - there's just a lot of situations where they're not going to apply.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 01:44 am (UTC)(link)
Well, I definitely don't disagree that it's difficult. But at the same time that's kind of the question that's interesting to me.

Also, I agree that different reasons exist, but it seems unlikely to me that the self-interested thing to do is always the moral thing, and so again that seems like kind of a problem to me.

(no subject)

(Anonymous) - 2015-09-25 01:57 (UTC) - Expand

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 01:41 am (UTC)(link)
you ask them how they would feel if someone else harmed them for their own benefit. or someone else ignored their suffering and chose to do nothing to help them. think of examples for these scenarios and ask them how they would feel if these things were happening to them personally.

i think empathy is a learned trait that children begin to learn as they grow up. a true sociopath may never learn how to empathize but they can be trained to understand that actions meant to purposely harm others are wrong and often illegal.

when dealing with people who aren't sociopaths but are simply extremely selfish individuals who can't see beyond themselves, you have to really spell things out for them and have them visualize themselves in someone else's situation.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 02:37 am (UTC)(link)

I suspect that they would stick to their guns and say something like "I don't expect anyone to help me if I'm suffering. If someone does, it's because they personally get something out of helping others, and I'm not interfering with their pleasure. But if I don't get anything out of helping others, why should I?" Or in the case of "how would you feel if someone harmed you for their own benefit?" they'd likely say "They'd have to succeed in doing that first, and I would fuck up their shit before they got a chance."

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 06:41 pm (UTC)(link)
in that case they might want to consider living away from society where they will be on their own and truly living for their own survival. for civilization to exist there has to be some give and take and cooperation between people. humans as a species have found this way of life beneficial for survival.

if everyone got the idea that fucking each other over was an easier way to live, life would be incredibly dangerous and survival would be jeopardized while we engage in an endless battle with one another. everyday would basically be chaos.

the hypothetical person in question would have to realize that doing "good" isn't just about them. it's about the survival of a human community. of course, there are always assholes who screw people over and seem to get away with it. until they fuck over the wrong person and end up dead or in jail with their reputation in shambles. i think if you do bad shit, it will come back to bite you (and the few people you care about) in the end.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 11:34 pm (UTC)(link)
I don't think they would consider living apart from the rest of society, because they want the best of both worlds--to live entirely for themselves while making use of other people. Most of us, if we find ourselves dealing with this kind of person, don't realize what sort of creature they are until the damage is done.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 03:02 am (UTC)(link)
I wouldn't try to convince that person they're wrong, because they're clearly a sociopath. What you describe is pretty textbook, actually. Of course they're wrong, but they're if they're physiologically incapable of empathy it'd be like trying to explain what "blue" is to someone who's been blind from birth.

The most compelling argument you can make to a sociopath is that somehow, behaving as though they're empathetic and compassionate has some sort of payoff (or at minimum, avoidance of penalty) for THEM. But honestly, most sociopaths who are semi-intelligent figure this out pretty quick because it helps them manipulate people.

Frankly, I'd just cut ties with this person and avoid them as much as possible.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 03:28 am (UTC)(link)
If they're a sociopath, they're not one smart enough to realize there's gain to be had in pretending to be a good person. I'm disinclined to believe they're a true sociopath for that reason.

It sounds like a teenager or someone who never grew out of their teen years trying to be what they think a sociopath is.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 06:26 am (UTC)(link)
But not all sociopaths are intelligent. It's true that early pioneers in the study of sociopathy tended to think that sociopathy came with a moderately high intelligence, but that isn't really the case.

[personal profile] philippos42 2015-09-25 03:30 am (UTC)(link)
Socrates said that the question of why one should be good was as silly as the question of why one should be healthy.

Goodness is part of wisdom: understanding the world outside one's own mind, understanding consequences, and understanding that you giving a damn can make others' lives better even after your life inevitably decays away. Your morality is part of society's health.

In line with what Case said above, a lot of "right" and "wrong" is pragmatically socially constructed. What we call right and wrong is partly what society has come up with that works. It's pro-social, and not entirely arbitrary. (There is more to it than that. There is morality beyond social convention, and persons can disagree on morality without being amoral.)

Now, someone can be a free rider, so long as they get away with it.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 03:51 am (UTC)(link)
I actually don't know about that, I mean I'd think that equating 'goodness' and 'wisdom' is a little tricky - the part where it goes 'Goodness is part of wisdom: understanding the world outside one's own mind, understanding consequences, and understanding that you giving a damn can make others' lives better even after your life inevitably decays away. Your morality is part of society's health' in particular. sure, a wise person would be able to see easily that their effort could make lots of lives better or that being 'good' might mean that there is a certain impact that they would have. And I would also think that yeah, you do need to be wise to be effectively good (someone who just does whatever someone else tells them is good without being able to understand why and how is more prone to being manipulated or to end up affecting other people negatively, for instance), but I don't think you need to be good to be wise.

What I mean is that you can quite easily understand all of the above... and pick self interest because making an impact after you're dead isn't really important to you. It's also pretty valid to be like 'why care about legacy when you're not around to benefit from it, if you're dead you're dead, might as well do what you can to enrich your position and make yourself happy and satisfied while you're alive'. For some people that would mean leaving something behind and changing the world, but this is hardly a universal thing. You could wisely say fuck the world or people you think don't deserve to be helped and pick self interest, while fully understanding the implications and consequences of what you're doing.

Like, it's not about just 'getting away with it', it's about deciding that what you're doing is the path that will make you the happiest and most fulfilled, and for someone who is not good but wise, they'd basically be going 'yeah, they are picking the non-good path, they don't think that it makes them a good person, they fully understand the implications of this and what they are and how it will affect other people, and this is what will make them happy'. Saying that to be wise is to choose good or to be truly good is to be wise is sort of iffy, if you ask me. Wisdom is really just understanding what you're doing fully, or why things happen. Assuming people who do this would automatically want a certain kind of good is another thing entirely and I don't think it's as guaranteed or something to take for granted. Someone could be wise to willingly endorsing fracking and to say fuck global warming because they don't care what happens to the world and know for sure that they will be dead in 50 years. They're being very aware of what's going on, understand what will happen, and taking the route that will make themselves happy.

Of course being vocal about those stances might get them shunned a little because everyone else will be all 'hey you selfish asshole' at them, and if they value things like societal approval or being liked, then their actions might change, but if they don't (or 'wisely understand' that what people think of you doesn't actually change who you are, and therefore you don't have to be bound by that) then they could simply carry on doing what they feel is best. And those actions would be wise from that point of view - if there is nothing they care about that would exist in the world after their death, why should they bother to care about that if they aren't a good person?

[personal profile] philippos42 2015-09-25 04:37 am (UTC)(link)
Sure. At one level of enlightenment. :D

Go deeper. Where does consciousness come from? Your consciousness is not a unique phenomenon. Whatever makes you conscious, whatever makes you you, is made of something out there in the universe: whether electrical fields of living matter, "soulstuff," mass itself, I don't know.

The mass, the energy, the spirit if there is such a thing, that comprises you, from which you come, doesn't disappear when you die. Whatever made you conscious is still out there. After you die, it can make something like you, out of the same stuff you're made of, again.

So you, or rather everything that you come from, may well have to live with those consequences. You want to be a jerk to other people in this life? Society may say something about that, but hey, they're other people. But if you're reckless with the environment, your very mass and energy will still be here in the world you damaged. I think that changes things fundamentally from, "Once you die, that's it."

Even if you say that that's too abstract, that your specific, concrete brain, skin and bones will be buried six feet under in an airtight steel box; well, the embalmer will drain the fluids that fed them. Much of "you" will be back in the hydrologic cycle soon enough. And eventually, that steel box will crack. We are not separate from the larger phenomenon of the biosphere. We are part of it.

Reincarnation in the commonly understood sense of transmigration of souls doesn't have to exist for reincarnation in the looser philosophical sense to be very real.

We are part of a continuum.

So, yes, what you say is valid. At one level of wisdom. I just deny that it's the bottom level.

It is fine for a sea urchin to be mindlessly selfish, but we also don't give them the vote, and we probably wouldn't even if they could use it. To be human, however, is to be capable of deeper thinking and moral judgment. What is a human who scoffs at that? Well, human. Most of us aren't much at philosophy, good or bad. And society, in a sense, recovered from Qin Shi Huang, Tamerlane, Hitler, and so forth. If someone wants to be a selfish animal, he's free to do so, and that's nothing new. And society is free as well to scorn him and his desires for "freedom" or "dignity."

There's a lot of philosophy that tries to make humans out to be like other animals, because we're animals. But of course other animals don't enjoy "human rights," either.

I'm not sure this makes sense. I'm zoning out.

I thought I was going somewhere with this argument, and I ended up somewhere unexpected.
Edited 2015-09-25 04:40 (UTC)

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 04:55 am (UTC)(link)
You're right, it doesn't make sense.

You literally just said morality is relative, and now you're assuming I would believe or give credence to what you're saying. Since I don't, none of that actually matters and it would be pretty wise of me to ignore this. Or rather, that would be the wisest course of action for me to take, but most likely not for you.

Wisdom, if you ask me, means recognizing - like you just said that people can disagree on morality and what that means. Assuming your beliefs on what is good and what makes life meaningful would apply to everyone else that you're talking to - and that if other people don't get them then they simply aren't digging deep enough into themselves or are denying something that is apparently to you evident - smacks of the same kind of spirituality or religious bullcrap that has people going 'atheists know there's a god out there, they just deny him because they want the selfish pleasures of this world'. Not a good line of argument to make and extremely unconvincing.

(no subject)

[personal profile] philippos42 - 2015-09-25 05:18 (UTC) - Expand

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 04:55 am (UTC)(link)
--Taking the long, global view, things that help you and hurt others often turn out to hurt you after all.
--You help people when they need it so that they will help you when you need it. No one likes an asshole.
--Really, a lot of things come down to no one likes an asshole.

(Anonymous) 2015-09-25 06:19 am (UTC)(link)
you do you, i do me.

if time reasoning, maybe we shall see....?