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Old 03-18-2009, 07:31 PM   #31
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Yeah, but you read and think certain things due to SOME factor...don't you? People read and think the same things as you and don't come to the same conclusions, right?

I do consider the stuff I read and listen to as "life experience". It mostly reflects values/morals I already have based on actual events that happened in my life though. I like to compare and contrast the views of things I'm familiar with others who are different than me. Anyone not me is different than me but you get the point...I hope.


To some extent. Sure, different cultures are into different things-- so, yeah, your "experience" has an effect on your values and what you read... plus other stuff.

But think here's where I think we always come to a fundamental difference:
You seem to admire the person who's lived a hard life and experienced a lot first-hand. I'm kind of the polar opposite: I admire the person who completely devotes himself to one specific intellectual field and cuts himself off from the real world.

We got off track somewhere, but I think that's our big difference.

Again, I just don't see the real world as having that much value. I'd much rather live in my own world and try to master something or see the world differently.
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:45 PM   #32
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To some extent. Sure, different cultures are into different things-- so, yeah, your "experience" has an effect on your values and what you read... plus other stuff.

But think here's where I think we always come to a fundamental difference:
You seem to admire the person who's lived a hard life and experienced a lot first-hand. I'm kind of the polar opposite: I admire the person who completely devotes himself to one specific intellectual field and cuts himself off from the real world.
I kind of had the feeling you thought that about me. It goes back to our different definitions on experience I guess. I couldn't disagree more with your assertion but then again...without the common ground of the same definitions to work from I doubt we're gonna make any progress.

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Again, I just don't see the real world as having that much value. I'd much rather live in my own world and try to master something or see the world differently.
And if you accomplished this, would you tell anyone else? What drives you to want to do this...if you even know?
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:58 PM   #33
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Again, you seem to like worldly, experienced, disciplined people. We're just different on this-- and I think that's our difference... not necessarily definitions. Your view of valuable "life experience" seems to be focused on the outside. I value someone like Beethoven more: he created masterpieces not by going in the world and experiencing it, but instead by immersing himself internally.

Idk... I think we're just very different

But I don't know how to explain it. I don't think you see where I'm coming from.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:06 PM   #34
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Again, you seem to like worldly, experienced, disciplined people. We're just different on this-- and I think that's our difference... not necessarily definitions. Your view of valuable "life experience" seems to be focused on the outside. I value someone like Beethoven more: he created masterpieces not by going in the world and experiencing it, but instead by immersing himself internally.

Idk... I think we're just very different

But I don't know how to explain it. I don't think you see where I'm coming from.
Well, I asked you a few questions to try and learn but you didn't answer 'em. If you feel more comfortable asking me questions and trying to see my POV then we could do that. Or if the questions were "wrong" cuz they couldn't produce the insight...what are the "right" ones?

BTW...I still couldn't disagree more with your take...lol.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:15 PM   #35
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Well, I asked you a few questions to try and learn but you didn't answer 'em. If you feel more comfortable asking me questions and trying to see my POV then we could do that. Or if the questions were "wrong" cuz they couldn't produce the insight...what are the "right" ones?

BTW...I still couldn't disagree more with your take...lol.
Again, you value external things. You are big on other people-- you sympathize with Marx because his goal is to help the large working and middle classes.

I, on the other hand, sympathize with anarchism because it gives everyone intellectual freedom and is the most logical.

I think it's just a large fundamental difference and that's it. I see where you are coming from... I really don't need to ask you any questions about where you are coming from. The problem is on my end... I'm not sure how to help you see where I am coming from.

Didn't mean to overlook your questions. What can I tell you to help you see where I'm coming from?


To answer Billy Preston, I think that this will keep going 'round in circles
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:24 PM   #36
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Didn't mean to overlook your questions. What can I tell you to help you see where I'm coming from?
I'm not really interested in those points you made right now...regardless if I agree with them or not. I'm just interesting in getting to know why you feel this way...that's all. I understand this is frustrating but it is for me too so I think we have that in common. So I'll just ask ya again...

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Again, I just don't see the real world as having that much value. I'd much rather live in my own world and try to master something or see the world differently.
And if you accomplished this, would you tell anyone else? What drives you to want to do this...if you even know?
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:32 PM   #37
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I'm not really interested in those points you made right now...regardless if I agree with them or not. I'm just interesting in getting to know why you feel this way...that's all. I understand this is frustrating but it is for me too so I think we have that in common. So I'll just ask ya again...



And if you accomplished this, would you tell anyone else? What drives you to want to do this...if you even know?
No. It seems really odd asking that. Would I ask: If you became really concerned with becoming worldly (or if you became worldly,) would you you tell other people? Of course you wouldn't ask this... it's not like it's something from point a to point b.

As to the second question... I don't know-- I just respect people that dedicate themselves to one area and that is their life. I just don't see a point in becoming some "worldly," "experienced" guy... just seems meaningless. Again, this is where we differ.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:40 PM   #38
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No. It seems really odd asking that. Would I ask: If you became really concerned with becoming worldly (or if you became worldly,) would you you tell other people? Of course you wouldn't ask this... it's not like it's something from point a to point b.

As to the second question... I don't know-- I just respect people that dedicate themselves to one area and that is their life. I just don't see a point in becoming some "worldly," "experienced" guy... just seems meaningless. Again, this is where we differ.
But we aren't talking about me here Rob. Or your perception of me...if they aren't the same. Try not to answer in the context that you know or at the very least...have an impression of who I am. After all, those ideas were gained thru interaction with me...a personal experience.

But back to the point...

On the 2nd question you say you respect people that dedicate themselves to one area and that is their life and then say being "wordly" or being "experienced" seems meaningless.

Ok, where is the meaning in dedicating oneself to an area? Does that person have to "master" that area to earn your respect? And speaking of respect, what inside you (if you know) compels you to want to give respect to someone like that? Finally, if someone does master an area (like a Beethoven) is there anything others can gain from it? Is that even important?
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:49 PM   #39
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Ok, where is the meaning in dedicating oneself to an area?
That is the meaning.

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Does that person have to "master" that area to earn your respect?
No, especially not formally-- mastering too formally makes it lose its meaning. Again, I would say the posterboy, if you don't mind me generalizing things 10 times more than we already have, would be someone like Beethoven.

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And speaking of respect, what inside you (if you know) compels you to want to give respect to someone like that?
Because dedicating themself is the end-in-itself; because they see something in a way that no one else does.

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Finally, if someone does master an area (like a Beethoven) is there anything others can gain from it? Is that even important?
Yes-- it makes other people see something in a new way.
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Old 03-18-2009, 09:02 PM   #40
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That is the meaning.
So dedication to something gives it meaning? And if so, can someone dedicate themselves to a value they feel strongly about based on an experience and have the same meaning as one who consumes a discipline?

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No, especially not formally-- mastering too formally makes it lose its meaning. Again, I would say the posterboy, if you don't mind me generalizing things 10 times more than we already have, would be someone like Beethoven.
Why would formal mastering cause the meaning to evaporate? Is it because formal implies physical world structure?

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Because dedicating themself is the end-in-itself; because they see something in a way that no one else does.
Ok, but why is that so worthy of respect? Or is it more of an admiration for that person because they've done something or seen something first and mathematically speaking...it's quite impressive to be the first or 1 out of (enter world's population at time of event)?

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Yes-- it makes other people see something in a new way.
What if I told you I'm having trouble appreciating what Beethoven (or anyone else of this ilk you speak of) did? Can I still have meaning in my life? What could you do to convince someone of its importance? How would you approach that situation?
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Old 03-18-2009, 09:13 PM   #41
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This, I think, is going to explain it all-- and I hope doesn't come off as too harsh:

I go to Sheetz. I see the guy behind the counter. He works 40 hours a week, goes home, watches TV, fishes, and that's about his entire being.

If you are him, what's the point of even getting up in the morning? Yeah, I know that he keeps the economy and world moving, he's necessary, etc. But what does he have to offer the world? Nothing. He's just a thoughtless guy who might as well never existed; he lives like 99.99% of the rest of the world.

But take Beethoven... here is a guy who saw the world in a way that no one else did. And he contributed to making the world see things in a different way.

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What if I told you I'm having trouble appreciating what Beethoven (or anyone else of this ilk you speak of) did? Can I still have meaning in my life? What could you do to convince someone of its importance? How would you approach that situation?
I'd say that they can have little meaning, if any. I would approach the situation by just moving on... I wouldn't try and convince them the other way... they're not going to see it, plus they could get offended. (I made an exception for you, though )
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Old 03-18-2009, 10:46 PM   #42
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This conversation has gotten interesting, if a bit odd, and I'm going to butt in with a couple of questions. Feel free to tell me to shove off if you don't want outside interruptions

First, I wonder if I'm right in that you both think value to others is in some way the measure of a person's worth? Whether it be as a cog in the wheel of society, or a fresh vision for others to share, you both seem to imply that what others gain from a person is the only way to determine a worthwhile life.

Second, specifically for Ellis, do you think that how people view the world is the biggest hinderence to having more visionary-type people like Beethoven? I would think that his kind of vision only comes with having a particular genius, as he did; whatever I may think, however I look at the world, without an unusual talent, without something inherent in me that is beyond the vast majority of people, can I really affect the world in the same way? Hard work and focus can do a lot, but that ingrained ability is, in my mind, what separates the great artists, or scientists, or leaders from the norm. My point, I guess, is that it seems you respect people not for what they do, but what they are born with, to an extent.
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Old 03-18-2009, 11:40 PM   #43
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Well, I used Beethoven as an example of who epitomizes it. Sure, he obviously had a tremendous amount of innate skills, but I'm not saying that you have to be brilliant like Beethoven or Wittgenstein.

I'll use a more modest example: I had a linguistics professor who was like this-- He'd stay up all night reading linguistics texts, had completely mastered the subject, got no sleep at night, and truly saw the world in a unique way-- he was completely absorbed in his field of interest. And he isn't a distinguished professor or anything-- no one with any kind of credentials teaches in West Virginia. The guy was brilliant, but I believe (and I could be wrong) that it probably had more to do with how linguistics became his life more than it was any remarkable innate talent-- although he is certainly very bright.

I see people worried about money, clothes, and every trifling thing you can thing you can think of and it makes me angry. You're car is your only concern in your life? You're relationship is the only concern in your life? To me, they mean nothing-- what means something more personal and unique: an field that is your life.

As I've said, I'll respect a guy who listens to Beethoven or reads Nietzsche or works on building machines or solving puzzles for 10 hours a day than I would of some guy who works 9-5 and came up from the projects. Why-- because the latter sees the world like everyone else; the other's don't.

If you don't try to work towards mastering or engrossing yourself in something, I just don't see a reason to wake up in the morning.

BTW: Montrovant, it's a breath of fresh air to get someone new in here Hopefully others will be tempted to join in too.

And as for me, I feel like I live by this. I spend all of my freetime (and I have a lot ) working on Mensa puzzles; reading Wittgenstein, analytical philosophy, and linguistics; and listening to Satie and Beethoven. The interests change a bit over time-- but I feel that I'm always 100% absorbed in them. And when I see people who aren't like this, it bothers me. I don't see any reason for them to wake up in the morning. I'm not saying I'm special, but at least I try-- at least I see things differently than the banal 99.99% of the rest of the world who spend their time worried trivial problems in their personal lives and material things.

Last edited by Ellis; 03-18-2009 at 11:49 PM.
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Old 03-18-2009, 11:48 PM   #44
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I go to Sheetz. I see the guy behind the counter. He works 40 hours a week, goes home, watches TV, fishes, and that's about his entire being.

If you are him, what's the point of even getting up in the morning? Yeah, I know that he keeps the economy and world moving, he's necessary, etc. But what does he have to offer the world? Nothing. He's just a thoughtless guy who might as well never existed; he lives like 99.99% of the rest of the world.
Why does he need to offer something to the world?
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Old 03-18-2009, 11:50 PM   #45
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Why does he need to offer something to the world?
Because why live if you don't?
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