22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
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16-03-2012, 06:06 PM (This post was last modified: 16-03-2012 06:11 PM by mysticjbyrd.)
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(15-03-2012 07:41 PM)craniumonempty Wrote:  
(15-03-2012 04:07 PM)Observer Wrote:  
(15-03-2012 04:04 PM)mysticjbyrd Wrote:  but if I did, then I still wouldn't care that some other kids died.
Yes you would...

Since we are pointing out fallacies, I hate to say it, but assuming that mysticjbyrd will care more for people's children that aren't connected in any way when getting kids is probably a fallacy as well. Granted, when you can understand the other person's connection to their kids, then the empathy toward them is greater, but that may not change this if no empathy is shown in the first place toward unknown strangers.

Both of you have a point, but outside of that, I am curious about your reply on this thread, mysticjbyrd. Do you see public empathy toward strangers as a flaw of society? Why or why not?

I, for one, do feel sad for the parents. So I probably would feel much stronger about it if I had kids. I even understand that I only feel sad about them because it was on the news. Doesn't change the fact that I do.

I wouldn't say it is a flaw, as it is a crucial part of our evolution. However, I would say it is flawed in the sense that we only care about the ones that we are directly aware of.

An example might work better.

If you pass a homeless man on the street, then you might be inclined to give him some money. However, despite the fact you know he is there the next week, you won't go back out just go give him more money. If you think about it, then you know he is likely still suffering equally, if not more than last week. Yet, you stay home.

So whats the difference? You are not directly confronted with the homeless man. We are simply not wired to care about things so distant to us. Its not part of our pack mentality.

Stories such as the one in the OP, are too distant for most people to care about. The people who think they care, are actually just people who have been nurtured in such a way as to pretend they care.

For example, you come across someone you really don't know and in the midst of the conversation they mention one of their loved ones passed away. Of course the our normal reaction is to offer said person "our condolences". But do we actually care that an acquaintance of someone we barely know died? Of course not. Its just the social norm to sell this line to these grieving people, to pretend we care.

If everyone actually cared for everyone else, then we would have peace on earth.


I guess I am just more realistic in my world view, as I don't believe in feeding people BS.
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16-03-2012, 06:28 PM (This post was last modified: 16-03-2012 06:34 PM by Eternal.)
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
I'm just speaking for myself here.

I have children, something like this makes me think how upset I would be if anything happened to them. This leads to a minute glimpse at what these parents must be feeling. It makes me feel so awful that I feel grateful that my children are fine, but I also feel sorry for the parents that are feeling the full force of the pain.

That is surely not societal, that is empathy. I suspect everyone feels it to a varying degree, and of course there are those that don't feel it at all.

Peace on earth would require that feeling of empathy to be stronger than ones own perceived needs. Do you think soldiers ever feel sorry for lives they have taken?

(edit)
Sorry, just noticed this had already been bought up by observer when I was reading back.

"Belief means not wanting to know what is true"
Friedrich Nietzsche
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17-03-2012, 04:05 AM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(16-03-2012 06:28 PM)Eternal Wrote:  I'm just speaking for myself here.

I have children, something like this makes me think how upset I would be if anything happened to them. This leads to a minute glimpse at what these parents must be feeling. It makes me feel so awful that I feel grateful that my children are fine, but I also feel sorry for the parents that are feeling the full force of the pain.

That is surely not societal, that is empathy. I suspect everyone feels it to a varying degree, and of course there are those that don't feel it at all.

Peace on earth would require that feeling of empathy to be stronger than ones own perceived needs. Do you think soldiers ever feel sorry for lives they have taken?

(edit)
Sorry, just noticed this had already been bought up by observer when I was reading back.


This is called empathy, something that mysticjbyrd lacks.

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17-03-2012, 01:45 PM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(16-03-2012 06:06 PM)mysticjbyrd Wrote:  I wouldn't say it is a flaw, as it is a crucial part of our evolution. However, I would say it is flawed in the sense that we only care about the ones that we are directly aware of.

An example might work better.

If you pass a homeless man on the street, then you might be inclined to give him some money. However, despite the fact you know he is there the next week, you won't go back out just go give him more money. If you think about it, then you know he is likely still suffering equally, if not more than last week. Yet, you stay home.

So whats the difference? You are not directly confronted with the homeless man. We are simply not wired to care about things so distant to us. Its not part of our pack mentality.

Being someone who was homeless for a while, I don't give money to panhandlers. If they seem like they really need help or ask for food (or maybe even money for food) and I have the means (including time... depending on the situation... if they appear to be starving, then other things can wait) then I feed them and try to get them help they need. I used to carry fliers to local shelters and where to get food when I was in the States (now I live on an island, so it would be more direct help) and would make sure they went since I would have to pay for their bus fare. Even then I don't give money, but pay the bus directly. While I never panhandled myself, I know about obsession and drives. Even if the person has every intention of actually getting food or picking themselves up, sometimes other things get in the way. For me it's computers (gaming, programming) and number theory. Numbers for me require no money or pretty much anything although paper does help as writing things down makes things a lot easier. When I get deep into it, there isn't much anyone can do for me except try to talk about something else and hope I pay attention. Most of the problems in my life were a mix of obsession and depression where one would drive the other until everything I had was gone. Then I wake up from that odd dream and remember the events that happened during from glimpses... It's really odd, because there is a realization after the fact of how obvious everything is going down the shitter, but doesn't appear that way during...

Either way, you can't help everyone, but helping from time to time can be important in trying to get at least your local society into a better position. It makes it even more difficult if you are the only person helping though, but luckily in the States there are organizations that can help.

Quote:Stories such as the one in the OP, are too distant for most people to care about. The people who think they care, are actually just people who have been nurtured in such a way as to pretend they care.

If you are pretending to care so much that it feels like you do, then you aren't pretending since caring is about feeling. If you are simply giving an outward appearance, then yeah, I would say that is dishonest.

Quote:For example, you come across someone you really don't know and in the midst of the conversation they mention one of their loved ones passed away. Of course the our normal reaction is to offer said person "our condolences". But do we actually care that an acquaintance of someone we barely know died? Of course not. Its just the social norm to sell this line to these grieving people, to pretend we care.

If everyone actually cared for everyone else, then we would have peace on earth.

Actually, you can't really care for everyone else. You can't even know everyone at least directly. There's simply too many people. That's why your local society is more important, because it directly affects you and your loved ones.

As far as just meeting someone and hearing of a death, it's really up to you whether you feel anything toward it or not. I wouldn't expect a stranger to feel anything toward it, but because we can connect as humans and can imagine what it would be like to lose our loved ones (especially if we have lost a loved one) then we feel the need to try and comfort the person in any way we can... however it can be awkward if we don't know them. So, we offer condolences. Are there people that would get pissed if you didn't do that and didn't know the person or the people they lost? Of course. There could be any number of reasons, but in reality, you can't expect a random person to connect to your problems. The reason it's good at times that strangers can connect is that it helps those who have nobody to turn too. What happens then? What if we do feel deeply moved and saddened by the persons loss? Just walk away?.. If you don't feel anything, then yeah, why not. But empathy can help with some situations. Having a cookie cutter saying helps also when you are deeply moved and really don't know anything to say to the person as well. It might be better to ask more and find out more about the person, but that isn't always feasible.

Quote:I guess I am just more realistic in my world view, as I don't believe in feeding people BS.

You shouldn't try to... ever. I wasn't actually surprised that you didn't feel for the kids on the bus. There are many stories I hear that I care less about and others I wish I could have been there to help... others that I feel an emptiness because I can see the hole that the person has that had someone die on them.

So basically, my own experiences decide what I care for or not. That's pretty much everybody. If you only care for people immediately connected to you, then so be it.

Oh, I asked you the questions because I was trying to determine why you posted here. I suppose because you think it's BS is the answer to that question. While some of the emotions might be... uh, unjustified, they are real. I guess you are saying that we shouldn't feel for remote causes... I'm not exactly sure, so you might have to clarify that for me. I think that we should, but should be careful in what we do to help those remote causes, much like me not giving money to panhandlers. I prefer direct help when I can give it, but if there is an organization that I'm familiar with, I'm not afraid to give to them and/or request they help with a situation that has caught my attention.

In this situation, there isn't much many of us can do. All one can do sometimes is express it. At times, that is purely selfish, because it does make you feel better when you have a buildup of emotion to express it somehow. If I didn't read your post, I probably wouldn't have posted anything. Not because I didn't feel sad, but didn't feel like expressing it. If I had a kid and felt the emptiness that I can imagine parents felt strongly, then I might have been more inclined to respond. I don't think there is BS to it.

I think there is more to what you are talking about though, but I think you are missing a few pieces in the way society is growing. I think we do need to watch ourselves and make sure we aren't being manipulated by our emotions, but in some ways I think that the global connections that we build can help in some ways to bond global communities together... much like the people of this forum.

edit: crap, sorry for the long post.. I was doing some work that was ultra-boring this morning, so anything else seemed exciting for me.
(17-03-2012 04:05 AM)Logica Humano Wrote:  This is called empathy, something that mysticjbyrd lacks.

If you read mysticjbyrd's post, it wasn't lack of empathy entirely, rather a lack of empathy for remote strangers. There is a difference. It may not be an entire lack of empathy for that either, but a conscience non-promotion of it. I'm sure there are some reasons for doing this that not everyone agrees with, but I don't think it's justified in saying mystic lacks empathy.

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17-03-2012, 02:39 PM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
Just throwing this in the mix:





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17-03-2012, 02:58 PM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(17-03-2012 01:45 PM)craniumonempty Wrote:  
(17-03-2012 04:05 AM)Logica Humano Wrote:  This is called empathy, something that mysticjbyrd lacks.

If you read mysticjbyrd's post, it wasn't lack of empathy entirely, rather a lack of empathy for remote strangers. There is a difference. It may not be an entire lack of empathy for that either, but a conscience non-promotion of it. I'm sure there are some reasons for doing this that not everyone agrees with, but I don't think it's justified in saying mystic lacks empathy.

Perhaps mysticjbyrd should analyze the wording of the argument.

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17-03-2012, 03:09 PM (This post was last modified: 18-03-2012 01:41 PM by mysticjbyrd.)
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(16-03-2012 06:28 PM)Eternal Wrote:  I'm just speaking for myself here.

I have children, something like this makes me think how upset I would be if anything happened to them. This leads to a minute glimpse at what these parents must be feeling. It makes me feel so awful that I feel grateful that my children are fine, but I also feel sorry for the parents that are feeling the full force of the pain.

That is surely not societal, that is empathy. I suspect everyone feels it to a varying degree, and of course there are those that don't feel it at all.

Peace on earth would require that feeling of empathy to be stronger than ones own perceived needs. Do you think soldiers ever feel sorry for lives they have taken?

(edit)
Sorry, just noticed this had already been bought up by observer when I was reading back.

How do you know that is not societal learned empathy though?

That would depend completely on the soldier, and the method of execution. The closer to the person you are the more empathy they would fell.

Pushing a button < Sniper < Pistol

Sort of like the Milgram experiment. People can easily push the button when they can't associate with the person. Hell 65% intentionally killed a person, or so they thought.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milgram_experiment
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17-03-2012, 03:14 PM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(17-03-2012 03:09 PM)mysticjbyrd Wrote:  
(16-03-2012 06:28 PM)Eternal Wrote:  I'm just speaking for myself here.

I have children, something like this makes me think how upset I would be if anything happened to them. This leads to a minute glimpse at what these parents must be feeling. It makes me feel so awful that I feel grateful that my children are fine, but I also feel sorry for the parents that are feeling the full force of the pain.

That is surely not societal, that is empathy. I suspect everyone feels it to a varying degree, and of course there are those that don't feel it at all.

Peace on earth would require that feeling of empathy to be stronger than ones own perceived needs. Do you think soldiers ever feel sorry for lives they have taken?

(edit)
Sorry, just noticed this had already been bought up by observer when I was reading back.

How do you know that is not societal learned empathy though?

That would depend completely on the soldier, and the method of execution. The closer the person you are the more empathy they would fell.

Pushing a button < Sniper < Pistol


The number of people and the circumstance in which those people were killed also matters. Let us not forget that.

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17-03-2012, 04:20 PM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
(17-03-2012 03:09 PM)mysticjbyrd Wrote:  
(16-03-2012 06:28 PM)Eternal Wrote:  I'm just speaking for myself here.

I have children, something like this makes me think how upset I would be if anything happened to them. This leads to a minute glimpse at what these parents must be feeling. It makes me feel so awful that I feel grateful that my children are fine, but I also feel sorry for the parents that are feeling the full force of the pain.

That is surely not societal, that is empathy. I suspect everyone feels it to a varying degree, and of course there are those that don't feel it at all.

Peace on earth would require that feeling of empathy to be stronger than ones own perceived needs. Do you think soldiers ever feel sorry for lives they have taken?

(edit)
Sorry, just noticed this had already been bought up by observer when I was reading back.

How do you know that is not societal learned empathy though?

That would depend completely on the soldier, and the method of execution. The closer the person you are the more empathy they would fell.

Pushing a button < Sniper < Pistol

I would think it is more a case of being able to relate, and therefore having some sort of understanding of what someone else experiences to be able to feel empathy.

Obviously it will be different for everyone, but just like with your sniper example I expect the individual would be as bigger factor as the method.

If it was societal would I not have always had it to some degree. For instance, I remember being a young teenager and stopping at a friends house and thinking his mom was nuts for crying at an appeal on the telly for starving children. I was completely removed from them, unattached. My main concerns were games and girls. I was similar to this until I had children of my own, then suddenly I wasn't so unattached, suddenly I had a point of reference. This point of reference and all the strong emotions I had already been through with my own children amplified the empathy for me, to a point where my own fears get projected onto such events. In this case the fear of losing a child.

This fear creates empathy/compassion for the person that is actually feeling it for real.

We are also discussing this from 2 different angles, it would be a different discussion if we both had kids, or neither had kids. But I suspect as we are it is hard to be definitive, as with most things until you are in that set of circumstances for yourself it is hard to say.

All of the above being said, I do also think people can express fake empathy, whether it is to conform or just through some learned system. I suspect it is possibly a mixture of both in a lot of cases depending on the personality and circumstances of the individual.

"Belief means not wanting to know what is true"
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18-03-2012, 01:00 PM
RE: 22 children die in bus crash. Belgium in shock!
Thanks for letting only most of the children die in this tragic incident,Jesus.
Praise the lord!

The meaning of peace is the absence of opposition to socialism.
-Karl Marx


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