religion

Morality for Athiests 

Many say religions are bad, I disagree. With the exception of extremist currents, I think religion is good for the masses.

Why ? you might ask …

Well, religion simplifies morality, it makes it so simple that even the dumbest humans could understand …

In almost all religions: you steal, you kill, you do bad things you will be punished by God/gods …

It take it even farther, you do good , you get rewards, like paradise etc …

Result > more people doing good and less people doing bad things.

Now, if we remove the religion factor, and ignore the criminal justice in a given country, things get complicated.

For example, how morality should have any effect on an atheist ? 

– stealing ? Why would that be wrong ? Some would rationalize it if they want.

– murder? With the human history full of savage barbarism, don’t think it’s hard to rationalize murder …

– Corruption, lies, cheating, Scam…. easy to rationalize 

In all honesty, for people that do not believe in Devine laws, morality becomes a personal struggle …

However, it is easy avoid this struggle especially concerning the minor “sins” …

Once we understand that small steps can lead to a destination we don’t want to go to.

Meaning, once we understand that small bad actions will lead us to normalizing them, and eventually lose part of self respect.

Example, the shoplifter, who continues shoplifting will probably end up becoming a criminal.

Thus Morality should be seen as a way to avoid becoming bad. 

Our brain always seeks validation, that’s why we rationalize, but if we mark clearly that such minor actions lead to this result, then the actions would be clearly rejected by our brain, not because of morality, but because of self validation.

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Freethinker VS Contrarian thinker

I have labeled myself a freethinker since many many years, to be honest, i was born a freethinker, and did not really coexist peacefully with rules and general opinions. But as i got older and hopefully wiser, i started noticing that being a freethinker is not enough, being a contrarian thinker fit me even better.

But really what is the difference and what are the similarities?

Let’s take the definition of a freethinker: A free thinker is defined as a person who forms his or her own opinions about important subjects (such as religion and politics) instead of accepting what others say. Freethinkers are heavily committed to the use of scientific inquiry, and logic.

The definition of contrarian thinker is: A contrarian is a person who takes up a contrary position, especially a position that is opposed to that of the majority, regardless of how unpopular it may be.

So to be a contrarian thinker, you’ll need to be a freethinker, but that’s not enough, you’ll need to have the courage to say out loud your opinions, regardless of how unpopular they are.

To understand this you’ll need to visualize yourself within a group of people defending an idea, that most find unacceptable.

For example, the champion of contrarian thinking, and my personal hero, is Peter Thiel, this guy is really unpopular these days, especially after expressing his interest in young blood transfusion

But as a contrarian thinker true to his nature, he is going after what many consider a taboo, but at the same time, if this science works, it would be a great scientific achievement.

There are so many practical solutions to world problems that are not considered, due to political correctness, human emotions, etc … Contrarian thinkers need to start knocking and showing the way, maybe the world would be reasonable again.

 

cavemen celebrity and success

Imitating Success – celebrities teachers for society!

I just watched a speech by Jack Gleeson (video below), an Irish actor, best know for playing Joffery Bartheon in the HBO television series Game of Thrones, speaking at the Oxford Union (most prestigious debating society,  established for 190 years, aiming to promote debate and discussion in Oxford University)

Jack mentioned several interesting ideas that i would like to talk about and weigh in.

To start with Jamie Tehrani from Durham university theory: Evolutionary psychology behind fascination with celebrities

Imitating success:The theory centers around the Anthropological notion of Prestige (high social status – admiration or respect)
This prestige is bestowed upon individuals who possess certain adaptive skills like “superior hunting technique”
This prestige is bestowed upon the individuals so that the community can learn from them through imitation.
My opinion: I think in this case, the prestige is not bestowed but earned, it might be true that the others will imitate and will respect this individual, but it’s not due to a prestige by itself but by the survival instinct and the hope of having a better life.

The side effects of imitating success:
The successful hunter might have a ritual, and the people who want to imitate him adapt a ritual as well as the hunting technique.

According to Tehrani theory we have a evolutionary and psychological instinct to imitate celebrities, thus the celebrities have became a social role model, normal people are interested in knowing what they wear, what car they drive, how they live etc…(see: celebrity brand association – marketing wise).

Celebrity worship syndrome: complete dissolution of the self in favor of another: form of religious hysteria.

Celebrities teachers of society ?
Have celebrities became the teachers of society? can we influence the masses through celebrities?
Will we start imitating the town drunk, who posses prestige due to an original fame which faded away a long time ago?
During the last few decades, this celebrity or prestige is granted on the basis of a none adaptive skills – or no skills for that matter, the actor, singer, reality TV star … the majority of these people have nothing of value to offer to the masses.

cavemen celebrity and success

Max vabor theory of charisma, Celebrities have a charisma that is accepted by us as a willing domination (not challenged like the police authority etc …), that’s why politicians often require celebrity endorsement or celebrity status to feel legitimated in the eyes of the public (called gentle charisma).

Chris Rojek a professor in sociology says: “Celebrities are informal life coaches. By watching them, people learn how to groom, learn how to wear their hair, learn what to say, learn what opinions are sexy, learn what’s right-on and not right-on. They’re assimilating all sorts of life-skills,”

And thus the logic of: Influencers  outreach in advertising.

Can celebrities be used to guide society/ manipulate society ?From what we have just learned, a couple very important question are raised:
Can celebrities be used to guide society?
by ensuring that everything covered by the media and published by them is according to a best behavior or certain global good agenda for the country & humanity?
Can celebrities be used to manipulate society?
Guiding society is surely not happening, all the screw ups the celebrities are doing is definitely not guidance material, if there’s something they are spreading it’s misguidance: several divorces, frequent flashing of private body parts, singing almost naked … Unless you want to believe this is all a part of a corruption plan  some secret organization have for humanity! But in authoritarian countries, the celebrity could be and are used to manipulate societies!

Explain luck

I have been trying the last few days to understand luck …
Luck, is something that do exist and could not be scientifically explained, some people are born lucky and others with bad luck, sometimes luck change but you can never explain luck.

Why some people are lucky?
Some people have luck behind them all the way, finding a good job, a good house, great deal on a car, finding money on the ground, winning the lottery … Luck follows them like a pet dog follow the master, while others have no luck or sometimes bad luck instead ….
My question is why?
I mean it’s not a matter of effort, because the unlucky guy looks for 10x more job offers before landing the crappy job, while the lucky guy gets an amazing job quickly …
It’s not a matter of goodness & personality, because many lucky people are arsholes while many unlucky ones are super nice.

I initially thought that each human have a package of attributes different from others but that have the same sum, like in video games, when you get experience bonuses to spend on your character, you can add strength, health, intelligence, dexterity … I though maybe at birth each human have a package of attributes that are different but have same sum, for example:
Intelligence + luck + health + creativity + communication skills + ….
And that when 1 of these factors is high, the others should be lowered …. But then i asked myself, what about people & kids that die in disasters … My theory don’t hold much.
Then i wondered if there’s a trigger that kicks on/off the luck, for example if this guy is lucky we could end up having a war in 10 years, so better give him bad luck … But again this theory don’t hold much, the same argument as before, how would poor tsunami victims have changed the future …

For me, i would like to believe that luck works loosely on the above theories, with other factors involved as well!

Validating your believes does not require to engage others

On this rock we call earth, people decided to believe in a mightier power, all is good … They followed great ideas and became followers of specific ideology ( Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, …), an ideology that gave them the answers they are looking for and the peace of mind they were hoping for, all is good … But somewhere along the road, they lost orientation, each one of these groups realized that for them to be right they should prove that all the others are wrong!

Why so? Why you need to hate, attack and try to discredit others just for you to feel good about your ideas? That what i call intolerance.

Wouldn’t it be better to go more in-depth of the religion you were born to, or maybe debate other ideologies not in the hope to prove them wrong but to get a clearer analysis of your existence!

Nothing is sure, believe me, even if you ask the leaders of your faith, none will be honestly able to assure you that you are going to heaven.

Embrace stereotypes, because are often true !

Stereotypes,

there’s a lot of them, believing in stereotypes is often associated with xenophobia, racism etc …

from my personal experience i would say it’s better to embrace your stereotype and try to consider it as a positive criticism,

sure some stereotypes are simply stupid, but most are the collective observation of thousands of people, in other words stereotypes are even better than polls… credibility wise!

Stereotypes give a general idea of what most or a big part of a certain population do or behave as,

there’s 3 types of stereotypes (my classification):

– the legit stereotypes: when a certain adjective apply to more than 50% of a certain population.

– the exaggerated stereotypes: when a certain adjective apply to less than 10% of a certain population (but more than 1%).

– the stupid stereotypes: when a certain adjective apply to less than 0.1% of a certain population.

example of legit stereotypes: “ Black people love chicken” (food), many people love chicken but there’s a higher percentage of blacks that do.

example of exaggerated stereotypes: “Arabs have  hot temper”, probably the percentage of people with hot temper is higher in the Arab population than in other populations, but still it is less than 10%.

example of stupid stereotypes: “Muslims are terrorists” , with more than 1 billion Muslim population, if  only 0.1% were terrorist, you would have more than 1 million suicide bomber > that means every single day you would hear about  100 suicide bomb all around the world.

So basically when stereotypes are legit, better to embrace them and consider them as constructive remarks, to self improve.

ex:

“y population is always late”  > try to consider being on time very important.

“w population has aids” > always use protection when having sex.

Whatever stereotypes apply to you, you can take advantage of these sincere non intended remarks to improve your personal status.

stereotypes