Scholar

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  1. You are right in that we cannot know whether they have an experience of life or not, but there is no reason for us to believe they do. As I said, they do not necessitate an experience of life, everything in a plant, all of it's reactions, can be explained on a simple "chemical reaction" basis. The speed at which plants react to their environment though does imply that they do not experience pain and suffering as we do, even if they did have consciousness. Suffering is all about urgency, and from a plants perspective urgency is very relative. Insects and animals move incredibly fast in comparison to plants, thus we can expect their experience of life to be more vivid and intense. Why would a plant feel terror and doom if it can't really do anything about it's situation? If you look at human beings and the way they suffer, when their life is on the brink of death they usually do not suffer either, because there is no reason for them to suffer. There is nothing they can do about it, just as much as there is nothing a plant can do about an animal eating it. With the argument of health I would challenge you as well and ask you if you would accept this positions if it was humans dying instead of animals. If let's say you weren't sure whether you had to eat human beings to be healthy, would you actually kill human beings instead of first trying your absolute best at an alternative diet? You don't know whether you will be unhealthy or healthy on a vegan diet, can you justify to yourself to harm other animals unnecessarily because you are not willing to try a vegan diet? Let's go back to the vampire scenario, if there were vampires who would kill and drink humans just because they thought drinking synthetic blood was unhealthy, would you accept their reasoning? From my position I would would need absolute proof to myself that the alternative to killing and eating a mammal it is my death. Otherwise I could make all sorts of excuses without ever trying it. It's kind of similar to killing someone you think is a threat without having any evidence for him actually being a threat. Are your assumptions really enough for you to end that beings life on the basis that you believe it to be unhealthy? It's not like you will just die if you go vegan, if you develop health issues you can just go back to eating your meats or mussels.
  2. I do not deny they are conscious or do not feel pain, I think you have a hard time seeing what I am trying to convey to you. And there is no reason to assume that mussels have an experience of life, they do not have a central nervous system. The suffering of mussels, much like the suffering of plants, would be completely unnecessary as they are not as mobile as mammals are. The very reason why we suffer is precisely because we are mobile, because we have the ability to avoid danger immediately. It's not like pain is inherent to nature, pain is simply a tool to communicate to the agent what to avoid. A non-mobile being does not require pain because they cannot avoid anything at all. But yes, I can see why you would have the bias you do, it probably increases your quality of life because, again, you do not need to recognize the unnecessary harm you are causing to your surrounding and to sentient beings who have a far higher capacity for suffering and consciousness than for example insects do. Additionally, if you were worried about insects and plants, you'd have even a bigger reason to go vegan, as animal agriculture consumes and kills more plants and insects than the plant agriculture would do if you directly consumed the plants. Of course the destruction of habitat is significant as well. You are equating intelligence to sentience. Just because a plant can do things does not mean it has an experience of life. The experience of life really is nothing but a tool to react to the surrounding world in real time. By your logic, computers already have an experience of life, as they can do all the things that mussels and plants can do, theoretically. You can program a robot to avoid lots of things, does that mean the robot is suffering when he does so? It is very ignorant to assume that all life on this planet is structured the same way as we mammals are. Just because we suffer when we die, does not mean a plant does. Just because we suffer when we burn ourselves, does not mean a mussel does. In fact, when you are in deep sleep you are not sentient at all. There is no experience of life, even though you might still react significantly to your surroundings. Ask yourself this, if you had no memory of anything at all, ever, not even a short term memory, would you be able to experience the world? If every single moment that passes by you would instantly forget, or even better, it would never enter your memory, what would pain really mean to you? You would still react to it, but would you actually experience it as anything at all? It's an interesting question, and it's not obvious at all in my opinion. Even when your brain is active, it does not mean you are sentient/you have an experience of life. What does that mean for a plant or for an insect? Furthermore, if an insect has consciousness, why do you think your brain is limited to one experience of life? What if different parts of you brain have different, separate experiences of life, with you being the one that experiences thoughts and the ego. What if there are within you multiple beings that communicate with each other. You would never know.
  3. There is no difference between beheading a dog puppy and killing an ant to you? Do you think the ant has the same capacity to suffer as the puppy does? Do you think the ants experience of life is as vivid and complex as that of a cow? Basing your ethical system on life itself is very arbitrary and I would challenge you that you actually do not operate that way at all. If a plant has no experience of life whatsoever, why would you be worried about killing it? Sounds more like you want to justify the killing of fully sentient mammals by equalizing the worth with all other life that exists. By that logic you can justify any behavior whatsoever. Anyways, it doesn't matter that much. Mussels are most likely more than enough to sustain your health even if you have suspicions that a vegan diet might not be healthy for you. Problem solved!
  4. Nobody is right is the point he is making I think. Imagine if you have slept your entire life, you never woke up, and your entire life you were literally dreaming. In your dream a person would come to you and tell you about how you are dreaming. Would you possibly be capable of understanding what dreaming is, or what waking up means? And did ever something happen in your dream that actually made you wake up?
  5. I have the same problem, and I cannot wrap my mind around it either. Let's assume the materialist position, that an outside world exists and that a brain is generating consciousness: If that is true, every idea I have, every impression of reality I have, is nothing but an illusion created by the brain. Though the problem here is that this illusion includes all impressions and ideas of the brain I have as well! Everything I believe about reality is nothing but a belief, that is the very problem! If I believe that a brain exists, what exactly is happening? I have a thought of a brain, and that thought included that the thought of the brain is created by the brain. That means the thought of the brain cannot be the brain, no matter what thought I will have! Your mind should be absolutely blown at this point, but let's continue. If my thought about the brain is not the brain itself then what the hell is the brain? Any thought I will ever have about the brain can impossibly be the brain. By definition the brain is creating the ideas, so how could the ideas be the same as the brain? It gets even worse! The brain is made of atoms, but atoms are nothing but an idea in my head as well! If atoms are what is creating my experience, then clearly the idea of atoms that I have are not the atoms, because the atoms are what is generating the idea! What is going on?! It goes further: Every idea I have about anything is happening in my consciousness, right? It's also true that any experience I have at all is happening in my consciousness as well! But my ideas about consciousness and experiences itself are experiences and ideas themselves! They clearly are not consciousness, but how is it possible that I can even have a thought about consciousness? Why can I think about anything, and what does thinking about anything even mean? At this point I am utterly confused. It seems like it's the limit of the mind, but the problem is that the limit of the mind is just another idea in the mind! This goes on and on! It's like I am generating a fatal error in my own programming. Can you see it too?
  6. If you did smoke boiled potatoes for 1 year every day and it would have revealed to you the nature of reality, how would you convince people of doing the same? What if you had no idea how or why it worked? If you actually do smoke boiled potatoes for 1 year and get enlightened, I am sure you will sound like a madman trying to convince people to do the same. The problem is that only you know it worked, nobody else. Imagine if then someone came to you and asked for proof and told everyone around you it was absurd to have blind faith in that technique? You think there is a clear path to discern between useful tools and useless garbage. You fail to see how difficult that process in actuality is and how in many ways it is a game of chance. If you would only trust what you knew to be true, or what you thought to be true, then you would not be able to operate in this world. Your mind seeks for certainty where there is uncertainty. You seek to know what you cannot know. All I can tell you is that it will do nothing but harm you, and all you can do is consider that I might be right and then seek the truth yourself.
  7. That's not quite true, you do not need to consume eggs, dairy and meat if you have the option to consume mussels and insects. Primates are insect eating animals, and human beings have this weird cultural thing where we completely ignore that fact. Ask one of those Paleo guys whether they eat insects, none of them do. They don't even consider it to be a possibility. If you are worried about ethics/ecology you really will have a hard time to justify consuming product that cause great suffering, death and environmental destruction if you have the option to consume insects/mussels. Just do some research on this, human beings have specific genetic adaptations to digest insect exoskeletons. No need for synthetic anything, you can in fact raise your own mealworms! As far as I know it's not difficult at all. Yes, but nobody is complaining about people who get offered meat accidentally and then eat it. People are complaining about people buying meat fully conscious of their decision. Look, I would still prefer everyone on this planet to be a stick-in-the-ass vegan than have carnists around. It's hilarious how people complain about the behavior of vegans when their own behavior is causing incredible amounts of suffering in other sentient beings without any regard for life. It's like the difference between a mass murderer and an annoying police officer who pulls everyone over because he is an asshole. You cannot compare the two at all, though that is exactly what is happening in the hopes of dismissing the vegan movement. People get offended by calling the slaughtering of animals murder, instead of getting offended by the fact that these animals are dying for no other reason than our comfort. It is quite hilarious.
  8. I would guess that these would be Leo's arguments for eating meat: "No matter how you live your life, you will cause death and harm anyways."/"Death is part of life!" "Suffering and death is illusion."/"Who cares lol, Absolute Infinity!" Leo is a moral nihilist and it seems like people just don't want to accept that fact. From the vegan perspective, it is wrong to actively kill an animal unnecessarily, and also to fund industries that do so. Imagine you thought raping was wrong, and you knew a person who from time to time would be raping people, would you accept the excuse of "You're such a stick-in-ass anti-rapists. If I rape once in a while it's not like it will make that much of a difference!". You'd be viewed as completely insane, and from the perspective of an ethical vegan you look the same if you from time to time kill an animal for taste-pleasure. Another good analogy is being a vampire. Imagine if there were vampires around and they had alternatives to sucking peoples blood out of their veins (always causing death in the process). Imagine these vampires could drink artificial blood, though they hated the taste and wouldn't be fully healthy doing so. If there was a vampire who then went on to snatch himself a human from time to time (and in the process necessarily kill him) because he just "can't help himself", or because he wants to be fully healthy, what would you think about that vampire? And with veganism it's even worse, because even if you are concerned about your health there are multiple sources of flesh that don't come from fully sentient animals. For example, Leo could eat mussels or various forms of insects (in fact, there is almost no primate around who does not consume insects) and be fully healthy as well, but he chooses his comfort for whatever reason he has. Morality is subjective, so we can bend it to how it suits us the most, and I think that is what Leo is doing.
  9. This is very interesting: It seems like blue is reacting against green, who are showing empathy and compassion for pedophiles. Though some points made in that video do seem valid, for example that the greeks seemed to have been going to the same direction. Was Ancient Greece actually transitioning to green? And might stage green be a weakness if other, competitive civilizations are stage blue/red, because of their willingness to be aggressive? It seems to me like, especially in the past, green and orange are associated with the degradation of strong, unified moral values. Could it be that whenever there is prosperity in a society, the need for the morals (which previously were needed to stabilized the behavior of individuals to favor the survival of the society) disappear and thus the society becomes less stable? An analogy would be how a muscle develops, when you need to use the muscle it grows, and when you don't need to use it anymore, it becomes weaker, because there is no need for it to be strong. Could morals in a society function in a similar manner, that whenever there is put pressure on a society (for example having to survive in nature or having to defend against other groups) the moral system becomes more rigid to ensure survival, and when the pressure is gone (through technology, peace, prosperity) these structures just start to loosen up and compassion for all people start to arise (like compassion of minorities, other races, animals etc.)? It seems like civilizations always crumbled when there was a lack of pressure for an extended period of time, which lead to the civilization being weakened, and then a sudden activity of high pressure which the civilization was not prepared for. What does that mean for our future? Have we reached a point in which technology stabilizes us so effectively that we don't need moral standards anymore, even if there might come sudden, unexpected outside pressure? Will our civilization simply crumble and be replaced by more rigid civilizations, that have not yet reached stage green/orange? And how will blue continue to react against green? Reading the comments in the video makes one wonder.
  10. Yeah I've been thinking the same about myself, the need to show off knowledge is definitely egoic. Though it still would be nice if there was a place where reasonable people can have reasonable discussion without judging others. I still don't know whether I am possibly just stupid by assuming all the things I do assume, but they make sense to me. If I am stupid they will make sense to me even if they are ridiculous ideas, and I can't learn anything if everyone just dismisses my ideas and more importantly my questions immediately. Maybe there is something I am missing, but I just don't understand why everyone has to get so upset by me not understanding things, if I indeed am the one who is misguided. The thing is, how likely is it that everyone disagrees with me while I am right, especially when I go into specific philosophy places where people seem to train themselves to be rational.
  11. Today I have tried to have some conversations with people on discord (it's a chat-application) on multiple servers, and I am not sure whether I am just incompatible with people or whether people are just being hyper-emotional. I was on multiple philosophy servers and tried to make some Atheists question materialism, I remained calm and non-judgemental. I asked questions about the nature of substance, I tried to ask what they mean when they talk about material, particles etc. and I even went so far to explain to them quantum mechanics, which they immediately dismissed because I am not a physicist myself. They refused to investigate and learn about physics when I told them that I did not think it was controversial to assume that the model of particles, atoms etc. are merely models that are not supposed to resemble reality but instead are a tool to predict it. I was ridiculed, I was called crazy, reductionist, low-iq. They went completely nuts on me. The only person on that server I was capable of having a conversation with was a Christian who claimed he took multiple doses of 5-MeO-DMT. He was the only person who was even remotely open minded enough to even talk to, and note that I really tried to explain these things from the perspective of a materialist, I tried to show them how materialism didn't hold up even from a rational, scientific view-point. Didn't work. Then I decided to strike up conversation with vegans, on a vegan server, because I am a vegan myself. I remained polite and open minded, when people started to call certain individuals Nazi's and Misogynist's, I politely disagreed and inquired for them to tell me why they think that was the case. They went completely crazy, they were offended by the mere fact that I could even consider that these people were not what they claimed they were. It was not possible for me, no matter how hard I tried to appease them and be nice, to have a normal open minded conversation with them. I wanted them to convince me of their position, and they still took offense in the mere fact that I was not able to adopt it. All I am trying to do is find a place where I can have normal conversations with people about philosophy without emotions and dogma. I just cannot find it, and I seriously am questioning whether I have some blind-spot where I just don't see my irrationality that seemingly makes everyone think I am a threat to them. I even tried approaches where I merely asked questions, without including any of my own ideology, and people think I am trolling and being intentionally annoying as if I had nothing better to do. It just frustrates me, the people who are supposed to show compassion show no mercy to people who are of other opinion or ignorant. And the people who are supposed to be rational seem to actively avoid rationalism in the favor of staying in their paradigm. Does anyone here know how to deal with this? Do I have to give up on conversation and debate and just philosophize by myself? I really don't want to do that because I know I have blind spots in my belief-systems that I might not see if someone else doesn't point them out to me.
  12. It would be nice if you could actually paraphrase Leo about what he said that you disagree with and show us exactly what and why it is wrong. You seem to be very vague with your explanations, I don't really see anything but empty critique. I don't really see how you present any evidence for you being right, you are more of creating a web of paranoid conspiracies, that of course might be true, but why do you actually believe so firmly that it is?
  13. Why do you think that the one consciousness wants anything?
  14. To spare the animal means to spare both the plant and the animal, because raising animals requires plants to be sacrificed for the animals. And just ask yourself this: Is it okay to kill a human (which is an animal) that has a cerebral impairment that spares it the feeling of pain? Other arguments for not consuming animal products are environmental, as the leading cause for deforestation around the world is as far as I know animal agriculture. In the end it's okay to do anything, but a well educated Turquoise will most likely pass on products that cause unnecessary death and violence, that's what I would guess at least.
  15. I'm confused about the difference between illusion and consciousness. If the self is an illusion, why does it matter to become conscious that it is an illusion? Whether I am conscious of what reality is or not, reality is still reality. Right now, the exact stage of consciousness I have, is reality, isn't it? No matter how I describe it, even if it is illusion, it is exactly what it is. And even my beliefs about it are exactly what reality is as well? When I believe that the earth is flat, the belief of the earth being flat is reality. It is existing, whether it is illusion or not. What is the difference between being fully immerse in it or being conscious of it being illusion? It doesn't change the truth, because the truth is the truth no matter what state of consciousness exists. What does it matter whether a state of reality is what we call "enlightened" or whether it is "non-enlightened", I mean both of them are reality as it is, one including complete immersion and the other does not. Though I guess it is just total immersion in a new state, because at every state one is always totally immersed in reality as it is. Isn't becoming conscious of truth itself changing reality and thus changing the truth? Because to a bird, the truth is being a bird. To an enlightened being the truth/reality is non-duality. Wouldn't accepting reality truly also mean accepting the illusion and the resistance, and isn't that what I already am doing? Isn't it in fact the only thing I can do? No matter what I do, I am surrendering exactly to what is happening, because it is happening. I am surrendering to resistance, to ignorance and non-consciousness. Aren't we all already in a state of not knowing, or just being as we are? Aren't we all absolutely immersed in the present moment? How could we be otherwise? The moment is everything that exists, including illusions about past and future. But these illusions are here, and even if we believe those illusions, that is still reality as it is. There is no way to escape the truth because everything is the truth as it is. Isn't the existence of the chirping bird itself a complete surrender to reality? Isn't everything that happens at all a complete surrender to reality as it is, because that is what reality is! No matter how reality changes, no matter what ignorance ceases to be, it all is at every single stage reality precisely as it is. Isn't us trying to rid ourselves of illusion resistance? But the mind blowing thing seems to be that even the resistance of illusion itself is part of the surrender. I don't know how to put this into words, but isn't suffering itself a surrender to reality because it is reality? When I am a dying child in africa, is that not consciousness being completely immersed in it's creation? Why is immersion any less reality that non-immersion/enlightenment? There is a striving for the end of suffering, but even that striving is illusion isn't it? I guess what I am saying is basically, isn't illusion itself illusion, and thus isn't everything just plainly exactly what it is? Even the change of that which we call enlightenment, isn't that itself just exactly what it is, and the idea of what it is as well just exactly what it is? So when I believe in the outer world and the self, why are we calling these things illusions. The belief in an outer world is nothing but the belief in an outer world, and the total immersion in the belief of an outer world is nothing but the total immersion in the belief of the outer world. Thus the realization of the illusory nature of the self itself is nothing but the realization of the illusory nature of the self. And even the belief that the outer world is reality is nothing but the belief that the outer world is reality! It's all already reality, it is self-describing itself at all times because that's all it can do. It is exactly what exists, just the way it exists, because it cannot be any other way. I don't understand anymore, I am completely confused about enlightenment. Isn't everything that exists enlightenment? What's the point in seeking it other than the seeking it? I don't even k now why I am asking this question it doesn't make any sense. When you say "No, you are confusing ideas with what is actually there!", isn't that still reality as it is? Isn't the confusion about reality also part of reality exactly as it is? My question is, why is any stage of consciousness more truthful than any other when reality cannot help itself but be exactly what it is either way? It always is exactly what it is, including all ignorance, all ideas, all experience, everything. And how am I even able to think about any of this? Wouldn't complete and utter enlightenment just create a huge circle that leads back to unconsciousness? Meaning that complete enlightenment would be such a radically surrender that it would lead back to surrendering to ignorance, limitation, dualism and thus create reality as it is exactly before enlightenment? Wouldn't full enlightenment just lead to becoming an ant again and being completely immerse in the existence of anthood, including that "ignorance" that comes with being an ant? Including total immersion in ego? Wouldn't that mean that the experience of ant is included in total and absolute enlightenment? Wouldn't it be a huge circle that repeats itself into infinity? Isn't that what is already happening no matter what we are?