Animal minds

But how does loathing humans help other life forms?

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In the Los Angeles Review of Books, Simon Critchley tells us about philosopher John Gray’s loathing for humans:

HUMAN BEINGS DO NOT just make killer apps. We are killer apes. We are nasty, aggressive, violent, rapacious hominids, what John Gray calls in his widely read 2002 book, Straw Dogs, homo rapiens. But wait, it gets worse. We are a killer species with a metaphysical longing, ceaselessly trying to find some meaning to life, which invariably drives us into the arms of religion. Today’s metaphysics is called “liberal humanism,” with a quasi-religious faith in progress, the power of reason and the perfectibility of humankind. The quintessential contemporary liberal humanists are those Obamaists, with their grotesque endless conversations about engagement in the world and their conviction that history has two sides, right and wrong, and they are naturally on the right side of it.

I dunno. Whoever thinks this has never lived with rescue kitties who, having been rescued from nature, tend to treat their human rescuers as their appointed servants.

Religion is my only defense against the kitties, actually. Cats, you don’t know what I do when I am at church.

Seriously, there is no species other than man that can do much to intentionally improve life on Earth. So it’s hard to see how this anti-human stuff helps much. It reminds me of sick people who are anti-doctor. It’s fine to be anti-doctor if you aren’t sick. If you are, you’d best look at your options. – news writer Denyse O’Leary

14 Replies to “But how does loathing humans help other life forms?

  1. 1
    Barb says:

    The human capacity for altruism—unselfish giving—creates another problem for evolution. As one evolutionist noted: “Anything that has evolved by natural selection should be selfish.” And many humans are selfish, of course. But as he later acknowledged: “It is possible that yet another unique quality of man is a capacity for genuine, disinterested, true altruism.” (The Selfish Gene, page 200, by Richard Dawkins) Another scientist added: “Altruism is built into us.” (Cosmos, by Carl Sagan). Only in humans is it practiced with an awareness of the cost, or sacrifice, that may be involved.

  2. 2
    Stephen Sparrow says:

    a plague on Altruism and Darwin. This trumps all.

    The quality of mercy is not strained.
    It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
    Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest:
    It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.
    Tis mightiest in the mightiest; it becomes
    The throned monarch better than his crown.
    His scepter shows the force of temporal power,
    The attribute to awe and majesty,
    Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings.
    But mercy is above this sceptered sway;
    It is enthroned in the hearts of kings;
    It is an attribute of God himself;
    And earthly power doth then show like God’s
    When mercy seasons justice.

    From The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    Barb and Ms. O’Leary, I don’t know if you’ve seen this interesting tidbit yet, but I was recently very surprised to learn that ‘mental states’ have a dramatic effect on health. For instance the negative mental states of stress, anxiety, and yes ‘loathing’, have been shown to have a detrimental effect upon health:

    Anxiety May Shorten Your Cell Life – July 12, 2012
    Excerpt: These studies had the advantage of large data sets involving thousands of participants.
    If the correlations remain robust in similar studies, it would indicate that mental states and lifestyle choices can produce epigenetic effects on our genes.

    How those marital rows can be bad for your health by JENNY HOPE – December 2005
    Excerpt: Married couples who constantly argue risk damaging their health, according to a study.
    It found that marital rows can prolong the time it takes the body to heal itself after an injury.
    One argument alone can slow this process by a day.
    And the study claims that when married couples feel consistently hostile towards one another, the delay in the healing process can be doubled.

    Upgrade Your Brain
    Excerpt: The Research; In his book The Genie in Your Genes (Elite Books, 2009), researcher Dawson Church, PhD, explains the relationship between thought and belief patterns and the expression of healing- or disease-related genes. “Your body reads your mind,” Church says. “Science is discovering that while we may have a fixed set of genes in our chromosomes, which of those genes is active has a great deal to do with our subjective experiences, and how we process them.”
    One recent study conducted at Ohio University demonstrates vividly the effect of mental stress on healing. Researchers gave married couples small suction blisters on their skin, after which they were instructed to discuss either a neutral topic or a topic of dispute for half an hour. Researchers then monitored the production of three wound-repair proteins in the subjects’ bodies for the next several weeks, and found that the blisters healed 40 percent slower in those who’d had especially sarcastic, argumentative conversations than those who’d had neutral ones.

    Whereas conversely, the positive mental state of love, caring, and nurturing, have a pronounced positive effect on health,,

    ABC News – The Science Behind the Healing Power of Love – video

    Social isolation and its health implications January 2012
    Excerpt: Studies show that social isolation and/or loneliness predict morbidity and mortality from cancer, cardiovascular disease, and a host of other diseases. In fact, the body perceives loneliness as a threat. Research from the University of California suggests that loneliness or lack of social support could triple the odds of being diagnosed with a heart condition. Redford Williams and his colleagues at Duke University directed a study in 1992 on heart patients and their relationships. They discovered that 50% of patients with heart disease who did not have a spouse or someone to confide in died within five years, while only 17% of those who did have a confidante died in the same time period.12

    Moreover the positive effect of a caring attitude is found to work both ways,, in that not only does the person receiving loving care from another person heal more quickly, but it also found that people of a giving, charitable, loving nature also receive the tangible benefits of a longer and healthier life:

    Study finds it actually is better (and healthier) to give than to receive – February 4, 2013
    Excerpt: A five-year study by researchers at three universities has established that providing tangible assistance to others protects our health and lengthens our lives.

    Perhaps this tangible effect of love on health goes a long way towards explaining why women, who are generally more loving and caring than men, live on average live five to 10 years longer than men do. Of course from a Theistic perspective this tangible effect of love is to be expected, whereas from a materialistic perspective, well to put it mildly, from a materialistic, survival of the fittest, perspective it is very counter intuitive:

    Verse and music:

    Matthew 22:39
    And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

    Alter Bridge – Open Your Eyes – music

    Supplemental notes:

    Genie In Your Genes – video

    Secrets of Near-Death Experiences – Kevin Williams research
    Excerpt: The near-death experience reveals the true meaning of life and it is this: we are here to learn to love. This world is part of a divine “university” of higher learning where learning to love is what life is all about. The near-death experience suggests that life and love itself is what many people identify as “God”. Love is the power that holds all things in the universe together. Love is where we came from and love is where we will return. Love is the law of the universe.

  4. 4
    Barb says:

    BA77, consider these verses from Proverbs:

    “A calm heart is the life of the fleshly organism.”—PROVERBS 14:30.
    “A heart that is joyful does good as a curer.”—PROVERBS 17:22.

    The Journal of the American College of Cardiology states: “Current findings suggest a harmful association between anger and hostility and CHD [coronary heart disease].” Hence, the Journal notes: “Successful prevention and treatment of CHD might involve . . . not only conventional physical and pharmacological therapies, but also psychological management focusing on anger and hostility.” Simply put, a calm heart fosters good health, just as the Bible says.

    Similar positive effects spring from a joyful heart. Dr. Derek Cox, a health official in Scotland, stated in a BBC News report: “If you are happy you are likely in the future to have less in the way of physical illness than those who are unhappy.” The same report stated: “Happier people also have greater protection against things like heart disease and stroke.”

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    Thanks Barb, interesting studies backing that up:

    The health benefits of happiness – Mark Easton – 2006
    Excerpt: “It’s not just that if you’re physically well you’re likely to be happy but actually the opposite way round,” said Dr Cox.
    (Extensive studies show that) “If you are happy you are (much more) likely in the future to have less in the way of physical illness than those who are unhappy”.

    Proverbs 17:22
    A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    Are Religious People Happier Than Atheists? – 2000
    Excerpt: there does indeed appear to be a link between religion and happiness. Several studies have been done, but to give an example, one study found that the more frequently people attended religious events, the happier they were; 47% of people who attended several types a week reported that they were ‘very happy’, as opposed to 28% who attended less than monthly.

    Atheism and health
    A meta-analysis of all studies, both published and unpublished, relating to religious involvement and longevity was carried out in 2000. Forty-two studies were included, involving some 126,000 subjects. Active religious involvement increased the chance of living longer by some 29%, and participation in public religious practices, such as church attendance, increased the chance of living longer by 43%.[4][5]

  7. 7
    Joealtle says:

    Are religious people happier? Well probably, we all know how the saying goes: ignorance is bliss.

  8. 8
    sixthbook says:

    If the studies said that atheists were happier I doubt you would think your explanation would be any good.

  9. 9

    Joealtle @7 — the most blissful guy around.

  10. 10
    bornagain77 says:

    Joealtle you claim,,

    ignorance is bliss.

    Now Joealtle, seeing as you are claiming to have specific knowledge that Christians are not privy to, (i.e. that we are ignorant whereas you, as an atheist, hold that you are not ignorant), can you please show us the exact evidence that proves that God is not real? Even Dawkins, recently called the ‘world’s greatest thinker’, is not foolhardy enough to claim knowledge that God does not exist,,

    RICHARD DAWKINS, usually labelled an “outspoken atheist”, has raised eyebrows after describing himself as an agnostic and admitting that he cannot disprove the existence of God.

    Ben Stein vs. Richard Dawkins Interview

    In fact Joealtle, contrary to you not being able to have 100% certainty that God is not real, I, on the other hand, have 100% certainty that God is real in that I, at a low point in my life, have had a personal experience of Him in my life when I called on Him in a time of need,, Somewhat similar to this:

    Strange But True – Miracle Testimony

    For you to try to tell me that God is not real is absurd. I know for a fact He is real. It would be like me trying to tell you that your mother does not exist. You personally know that your mother exist! And even though I have never met your mother and could very well believe she is merely a figment of your imagination and tell you are ignorant for believing that such a person as your mother exists, no amount of augmentation on my part could ever change your mind that your mother is real since you know her personally. That’s the difference between my position and your position Joealtle. You are merely hoping He does not exist whereas I know for a fact that He does exist!

    Verse and music:

    John 3:8
    The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

    Nicole C. Mullen – My Redeemer Lives – Video

    Supplemental note:

    20 Arguments For God’s Existence – Dr. Peter Kreeft

    1. The Argument from Change
    2. The Argument from Efficient Causality
    3. The Argument from Time and Contingency
    4. The Argument from Degrees of Perfection
    5. The Design Argument
    6. The Kalam Argument
    7. The Argument from Contingency
    8. The Argument from the World as an Interacting Whole
    9. The Argument from Miracles
    10. The Argument from Consciousness
    11. The Argument from Truth
    12. The Argument from the Origin of the Idea of God
    13. The Ontological Argument
    14. The Moral Argument
    15. The Argument from Conscience
    16. The Argument from Desire
    17. The Argument from Aesthetic Experience
    18. The Argument from Religious Experience
    19. The Common Consent Argument
    20. Pascal’s Wager

  11. 11
    Barb says:

    Evolution teaches us that mankind is all about survival and reproduction. After all, the fittest survive and reproduce, and more fitness is introduced into the world. Why, then do we care for the sick and infirm? More importantly, why do we as humans recognize that caring for the sick and infirm is the right thing to do, as opposed to letting them die? There seems to be more than “metaphysical longing” going on here.

    Also, why do some atheist couples remain child free when, according to evolution, they should be reproducing? That is one of the primary goals of natural selection. Sounds like somebody has free will, even if they deny it exists.

  12. 12
    Joealtle says:

    Ah but it doesnt say that. It says that the religious are happier.
    BA, youre delusional.
    Also, I have never stated that “god does not exist.”
    How are things at the local loony-bin by the way?

  13. 13
    bornagain77 says:

    Joealtle you claim:

    “Ah but it doesnt say that. It says that the religious are happier.”

    yet I cited:

    Are Religious People Happier Than Atheists? – 2000
    Excerpt: there does indeed appear to be a link between religion and happiness. Several studies have been done, but to give an example, one study found that the more frequently people attended religious events, the happier they were; 47% of people who attended several types a week reported that they were ‘very happy’, as opposed to 28% who attended less than monthly.

    Then you say:

    ‘BA, youre delusional.’

    Yet I’m not the one denying what the study actually says., Thus that would, since you are the one denying that the study says what the study says, make you the delusional one. No offense, but that is just plain,,

    Patsy Cline – Crazy

  14. 14
    bornagain77 says:

    I’m sorry Joealtle, I completely misread your sentence. My mistake,, I’m so use to Darwinists denying evidence, I just automatically assumed you denied the study. ,,, miracles will never cease 🙂

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