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So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

Last post 10-31-2007, 12:30 PM by Resurrected. 18 replies.
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  •  09-26-2007, 10:54 PM 29095

    So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    Hypotetical question:

    If you were in a hostage situation and you were given a choice of

    a.) shoot one person and the rest go free.

    or

    b) don't kill anyone and because you didnt choose to kill, everyone would be killed.

    Philosophers looked at for the discussion:

    Jeremy Bentham- "Hendonistic Calculus"
    Immanuel Kant- "Actions must be done from duty"
    Aristotle - "Virtues and Reason"

    I want to see what view some of you have on this sticky hypothetical.

    !O.O!


    Keep cool ma babies!
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  •  09-27-2007, 10:31 AM 29132 in reply to 29095

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    easy, shoot the one person.

    i mean if it was obvious they meant what they said.

    and i mean, it's not easy... i would have to live having killed someone... but what has become easier for me is the choice in such a situation... the selfishness of avoidance is growing intolerable.  without such selfish deliberations i believe one sees oneself almost as a tool in these situations, and there is no question as to what to do once that squirmy little worm... or sensitive little man... bites the bullet to do the duty.

    there is the possibility of reason shutting down in an overly sensitive person, even without really thinking only for themselves, the emotional trauma of the raw experience mightn't be postponable?

    in that case they might tell you now what they know what should be done, but they might know that they couldn't pick themselves up to do it come crunch time.


    x23.zaadz.com
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  •  09-27-2007, 10:36 AM 29133 in reply to 29132

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    and make it an old man.  (if it's on a plane, not the captain!)
    x23.zaadz.com
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  •  09-27-2007, 4:32 PM 29149 in reply to 29133

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    After listening to some others in class that seems to be the common answer, something about that deeply troubles me.

    Would I think less of you if you killed one for the sake of many, no not at all. Would I think less of myself for doing the same thing? The answer is yes absolutely.

    Keep cool ma babies!
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  •  09-27-2007, 5:27 PM 29151 in reply to 29149

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    So... was it an option to choose yourself as the one that you shoot?

    I mean, that's obviously not a happy choice, but it satisfies the dilemma and that way you aren't stuck with imposing your choice on another, nor are you stuck with having to live with killing another.

    I'm not necessarily saying that's what I would do... but it would cross my mind.

     

    By the way, I just started using this forum, so I have no signature lines or thumbnails or anything just yet ;)

     

    K

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  •  09-27-2007, 9:11 PM 29163 in reply to 29151

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    we were givin the question a day ago, and tommarow we will discuss it, but i will bring up your point because i dont think it was covered.

    Keep cool ma babies!
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  •  09-27-2007, 9:18 PM 29164 in reply to 29151

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    satorizones... emotionally it would be a hard one, but as a moral or rational question i feel that i do know what atleast SHOULD be done.

    and anyway, i can always kill myself afterward if it's more about my continuing miserableness... than about not realizing that some things that are done for a greater good will hurt innocent people (and if we didn't abide by that the world would have gone long ago)...  that stops me.  and yet suicide over such an incident would also feel weak and quite selfish, to me.

    and i don't think that would be an option on the day, Resurrected, or i would take it too!


    x23.zaadz.com
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  •  09-27-2007, 9:32 PM 29166 in reply to 29164

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    if it involved my loved ones as the "few sacrificed"  i would cease to see myself and my loved ones as tools and probably have a break down of morality and reasoning...

    i can tell you what should happen, from a "moral rational standpoint", but considering intimacy wouldn't it make me more of a monster to kill my own family?  isn't there something psychologically just not right about it, if the love is true...

    hey that leads me to a recurring dream i used to have as a kid... i guess it's the ultimate question of this kind really... which is this, i am in a room with one madman and my family are lined up in chains... and along the wall are chutes... and down the chutes are razors... with a bucket at the bottom to collect the minced meat of their bodies left overs... :/ ....  who do i choose, because if i don't choose one then they all go down... i remember being so young and making this decision so many times, that it probably disturbed my growth at the time, especially having to watch the consequences.


    x23.zaadz.com
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  •  09-27-2007, 9:36 PM 29167 in reply to 29164

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    vulgan:

    satorizones... emotionally it would be a hard one, but as a moral or rational question i feel that i do know what atleast SHOULD be done.

    and anyway, i can always kill myself afterward if it's more about my continuing miserableness... than about not realizing that some things that are done for a greater good will hurt innocent people (and if we didn't abide by that the world would have gone long ago)...  that stops me.  and yet suicide over such an incident would also feel weak and quite selfish, to me.

    and i don't think that would be an option on the day, Resurrected, or i would take it too!



    I really do understand where you are comming from and respect that view. Ive been wrestleing with this idea a lot for the past 2 days and I finally had to write it out to really detach from it and at the same time honor and feel not just my emotion but emotion of others and a perspective that didnt really come into play until instantly and quite randomly on a jog earlier today.


    here is what I wrote:

    Hypothetical: you are a hostage along with a group of others; you are given the choice to kill one other hostage in turn freeing yourself and the other hostages. If you choose not to kill someone everyone as a result will be executed.


    This hypothetical has proved a massive problem for my mind and sense of self or what type of person I think I am. I’ve asked several people and heard some class mates already state their view on the subject. I even went to an internet forum and raised the topic only to get the general same response “Kill one for the sake of many”. Something about that fundamentally does not sit well with my very essence or being.

     

    If anyone of my classmates or anyone else in general made the choice to kill one for the sake of many I would not look down upon them. However would I look down upon myself having done the same thing? The answer is absolutely. This hypothetical has brought out several “selves” into the light and is seeing which one of them will not become sunburned or in other words which one can truly rest easy after the choice they have made.

     

    To find that answer out I had to bring our hypothetical into its hypothetical future a bit and shift perspective from a first person participant to a third person objective or a person who read about the story some years after the event passed.

     

    Scenario 1: Joe

    When investigated we found out that one of the hostages was given a choice that could of saved the rest including himself. The choice was to kill another hostage for the sake of the rest. Joe declined to kill another hostage and everyone was murdered as a result.

     

    Scenario 2: Bob

    When investigated we found out that one of the hostages was given a choice that saved many including himself. The choice was to kill another hostage for the sake of the rest. Bob accepted and shot and killed one of the other hostages, Bob and the rest were let go.

     

    Both of these men are in my eyes respectable for doing their duty, however only one of those men inspires me. Only one of those men awakens goose bumps in the positive sense. And that man is Joe, for when it came to his integrity he protected it at all costs and in my eye took a bullet for something of incalculable value.

     

    Is that selfish? Yes, he wanted to preserve something that was his and by making that choice (to not kill) he did protect his integrity.

     

    Is that selfless? Absolutely, the integrity of all humans was saved and continues to be saved each time Joe’s story is told and truly understood.

     

     

     



    Keep cool ma babies!
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  •  09-28-2007, 2:21 AM 29177 in reply to 29167

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    the only goosebumps i felt were the scary type...sorry. i do understand, but it is scary because i know this is how alot of in truth very humane people seem to be thinking.

    there are people who will make this kind of decision "for the greater good" heartlessly of course, in a kind of hard headed (scary!) denial of the emotional significance, but for someone like me it hurts far more... far more than it would to avoid my place in the scenario to protect my "integrity".

    was it really integrity he protected, or an impossible moral idealism (connected to a delusional self pride) that had no place in the reality of that moment?

    if so i am sorry, and feel for him... because this world doesn't accomodate wishfulness of this kind without terrible consequences...

    i mean if there was a "Buy One, Get A Million Killed" deal going i wouldn't buy it.

    im sorry i have to express some of my emotional reaction to that, since this is more than true against false, being a question of humanity... and i feel bad playing some kind of street hardened order following police man.  yeowzers.

    "the death of one is a tragedy

    but the death of a million is just a statistic"

     

    all virtual,

    vulgan


    x23.zaadz.com
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  •  09-28-2007, 3:16 AM 29183 in reply to 29177

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    vulgan:

    the only goosebumps i felt were the scary type...sorry. i do understand, but it is scary because i know this is how alot of in truth very humane people seem to be thinking.

    there are people who will make this kind of decision "for the greater good" heartlessly of course, in a kind of hard headed (scary!) denial of the emotional significance, but for someone like me it hurts far more... far more than it would to avoid my place in the scenario to protect my "integrity".

    was it really integrity he protected, or an impossible moral idealism (connected to a delusional self pride) that had no place in the reality of that moment?

    if so i am sorry, and feel for him... because this world doesn't accomodate wishfulness of this kind without terrible consequences...

    i mean if there was a "Buy One, Get A Million Killed" deal going i wouldn't buy it.

    im sorry i have to express some of my emotional reaction to that, since this is more than true against false, being a question of humanity... and i feel bad playing some kind of street hardened order following police man.  yeowzers.

    "the death of one is a tragedy

    but the death of a million is just a statistic"

     

    all virtual,

    vulgan

    No need to apologize bro, I could tighten my point on comparing the idealism of integrity to the idealism of freedom (something a little more close to home for many) an idealism that could be open to moral interpratation and and realative decontruction just as you have done with my ideal of human integrity.

    which would you rather jeapordize the intangable idealism of freedom or the lives of 7-10 people with wich if freedom was jeapordized then the very lives in wich they live wouldnt be the same and some might argue if they couldnt live free then what would be the point?

    Now you need to be very careful when the intial red flags come up on an opposing view, because we could have someone who was comming from red (this is how i feel and fuck you), blue (this is my belief and im right, all opposing beliefs are going to hell) orange (eveyrone is equal here, lets let the stats and or science speak for us) green (its all realative i cant really say which is better or worse).

    point being someone red could totally agree with you or me, but they did it from red ego or ethno centric thinking...

    same answer but a completely different level of consciousness.

    I think the more people we have operating from higher levels in terms of hot topics like this the better.




    Keep cool ma babies!
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  •  09-28-2007, 10:35 AM 29202 in reply to 29183

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    Happy Friday S,

     

    These moral questions are not always easy to answer, especially if we eschew flatland guidelines such as ‘the greatest good for the greatest number’ that favors viruses and adopt a more all-encompassing standard, for which KW has offered guidelines under the name Basic Moral Intuition (BMI), an orienting generalization calling for actions that seek to promote and protect the greatest depth for the greatest span. In it depth is the number of levels in a holon and span is the number of holons in a level.

     

    Often my daily walk through the nearby woods follows a path alongside the grandmotherly Fox River. These walks often have a meditative quality and while musing on this depth/span maxim and perhaps inspired by my experiences in obtaining measurements for survey cross-sections for more than one river the following haiku came about:

     

    Hidden in the Open

     

    Teaching as it goes:

    Greatest depth for greatest span;

    River as it flows.

     

    Warmly,

     

    Charles

    88W18'28" 41N58'02"

     

     

     

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  •  09-28-2007, 11:00 AM 29206 in reply to 29202

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    Do you happen to remember which book or books the BMI is offered in (or maybe there is a link to it somewhere on the web?), this sounds like something right up my alley and something that might help me better word my views with some more up to date maps.

    Oh and what would you do in this very difficult situation Charles?


    Keep cool ma babies!
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  •  09-28-2007, 1:10 PM 29210 in reply to 29206

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    Happy Friday S,

     

    Brief mention of the Basic Moral Intuition by can be found in KW’s recent little book called The Integral Vision; a fuller explication of it can be found in the endnotes of his Sex, Ecology, and Spirituality, where he does say that the BMI is not an ‘engraved tablet of written instructions’, but just that –an intuition.

     

    And as to what i might do or not do in a given situation is hard to say; consider if you will that it's never quite clear to me what exactly the next word is that i'm going to speak or write, let alone how i might decide some lifeboat question involving human mortality. It may seem that this is just begging the question, or avoidance on my part, but the actual truth is that i just trust that in the moment, in a given context, that the right word and deed will follow -even in extreme situations.

     

    I know of no better example of this than that of Arjuna going into battle at Kurukshetra with Krishna at his shoulder. 

     

    Warmly,

     

    Charles

    88W18'28" 41N58'02"  

     

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  •  09-28-2007, 3:08 PM 29216 in reply to 29210

    Re: So my philosophy teacher asked this today...

    charlesb:

    Happy Friday S,

     

    Brief mention of the Basic Moral Intuition by can be found in KW’s recent little book called The Integral Vision; a fuller explication of it can be found in the endnotes of his Sex, Ecology, and Spirituality, where he does say that the BMI is not an ‘engraved tablet of written instructions’, but just that –an intuition.

     

    And as to what i might do or not do in a given situation is hard to say; consider if you will that it's never quite clear to me what exactly the next word is that i'm going to speak or write, let alone how i might decide some lifeboat question involving human mortality. It may seem that this is just begging the question, or avoidance on my part, but the actual truth is that i just trust that in the moment, in a given context, that the right word and deed will follow -even in extreme situations.

     

    I know of no better example of this than that of Arjuna going into battle at Kurukshetra with Krishna at his shoulder. 

     

    Warmly,

     

    Charles

    88W18'28" 41N58'02"  

     

    Cool I'll go ahead and look up on those books, and I totally respect your postion on the "right thing will happen in that moment" especially after reading Tolle's "Power of Now" and "Stillness Speaks". However there is a part of me that doesnt resonate with the indesiciveness and feels that we need to actually be able to honor future scenarios (granted some could be rediculos, but im talking in a general sence that they are all plauseable) and have a judgemental opinion about the situation and be able to voice it when needed.

    I mean its like "well I cant really say what I would do about abortion until I was actually in the abortion clinic, but then I know I would make the right decision"

    Again though there are some degrees of depth here that are showing up on my radar, that make it easy for me to extend respect for your opnion and view.


    Keep cool ma babies!
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