Human Empathy.
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02-01-2012, 09:49 AM
Bug Human Empathy.
Hey, I recently did a study on myself to see how empathy is precieved by humans in different forms, Descriptive, Fake AudioVisual and Real audiovisial.
I dont know if any formal studies were done about this but I know that a sample size of 1 is pretty insignificant but maybe this can be reproduced on a larger more controlled scale.

So the three stimuli.

Descriptive,

6 million people died in the holocaust

1.Genisis 6:7
And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

I didnt feel much great empathy as i do not know these people and did not see how they were killed so on a scale
Apathy 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Empathy

Fake Audiovisual,
______SPOILER ALERT_______





When i first watched this i felt a moderate amount of empathy for the character because ive spent a lot of time getting to know him over the series. but the fact that i knew it wasn't real i.e special effects +fiction took a lot out of my empathy.

Apathy 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Empathy

Now this one is real and was posted in the recent circumcision thread
very graphic.





I felt an extreme amount of empathy to the extent that i couldnt watch anymore, before the actual cutting took place.
even though i had no developmental knowlage to the people in the video (like books movies and tv) the fact that i knew this was a real person and not scripted affected me greater in that i wanted to end the suffering before it even began simmilar to seeing mel gibson (brave heart, passion) tortured vs a real person tortured.

Apathy 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Empathy

These were my observations.
I concluded that human Empathy is

1. Subject to the Realism of the event.
2. Stronger with Audiovisual Contact rather than statistical or descriptive accounts.
3. Hindered by ideologies, in the case of the circumcision video in which a person feels justified to put another person through very real torture or death(9/11 attack) to appease a primitive desert god.

This is not a circumcision is good Vs bad thread theres already one open if ud like to discuss it here

What do you guys make of all of this?

"Yeah, good idea. Make them buy your invisible apple. Insist that they do. Market it properly and don't stop until they pay for it." -Malleus
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02-01-2012, 10:24 AM
RE: Human Empathy.
I agree completely on your first point "descriptive".

On the two other ones I would like to add that I find the situation, of the individual or group in question, very important.
Like taking your examples of a suffering person. We tend to emphasize more with people who are dependant (children, old people, sick people, people with a disadvantage)

Backround?
If I were a Christian and watched "passion of christ" I might start crying knowingly this is just acted but I as a christ would connect more to the movie than I as an atheist. But would they see someone real being treated like that, they might connect less because it is not about their deep belief anymore and the person might have deserved the treatment.
On the second video I as someone who has worked with children would like to extend your scale over 10.

"Freedom is the freedom to say that 2+2=4" - George Orwell (in 1984)
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02-01-2012, 11:17 AM
RE: Human Empathy.
Certified: Witchcraft. Angel

You play a dangerous game when you allow evolution to rule your emotion. You assume a dangerous position when you demand the existence of suffering. And I said it once before, again seems appropriate; I would devour you all - for my Gwynnies.

Now that ritual has been performed - sorry about that, trying to save a Christian from himself on a another forum - balance must be maintained.

People don't rank too highly right now. Saw a video, People being evil to a dog?

Mad, I was; kill, I would. It is not sin to trust in simulation based upon empathy; what may be crucial to remember, is that it is a simulation. People forget. People get on soapbox, preach a gospel of suffering. Mad, I get.

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02-01-2012, 11:58 AM
RE: Human Empathy.
(02-01-2012 09:49 AM)Jackrabbit Wrote:  I felt an extreme amount of empathy to the extent that i couldnt watch anymore, before the actual cutting took place.

Wow. Right there with ya. OMFG. Couldn't finish.

"Religion is the binky of a teen-age humanity."
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02-01-2012, 12:36 PM
RE: Human Empathy.
(02-01-2012 11:58 AM)yosemitesam Wrote:  
(02-01-2012 09:49 AM)Jackrabbit Wrote:  I felt an extreme amount of empathy to the extent that i couldnt watch anymore, before the actual cutting took place.

Wow. Right there with ya. OMFG. Couldn't finish.

Same here. Stopped before it happened.

Oh, no Hallucinations 4:11 says the 'gilded sheep should be stewed in rat blood' but Morons 5:16 contradicts it. (Chas)

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02-01-2012, 01:56 PM
RE: Human Empathy.
That last one is just horrible.

I was pretty upset at Ned Stark's death though, mainly because it was so surprising. Nothing like the Red Wedding though, I put the book down and didn't read it for weeks after that happened.

James 1:27
"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world"

"Atheists express their rage against God although in their view He does not exist." C.S. Lewis
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02-01-2012, 02:18 PM
RE: Human Empathy.
Here's another one that's incredibly difficult to finish. It's the "honor" killing of an Iraqi girl for dating a boy from a different religious sect. There are a few different versions of this video, and the quality of this particular video is really crappy, but the point comes across. It makes my heart pound and it makes me physically ill if I continue to watch it. What is obviously clear is the amount of hatred these men have towards the girl.
Reading about stoning in the bible is one thing, but seeing in real time, in this day and age, the anger and hatred required to do this horrible deed is something else entirely. While I have a hard time watching it, I'm glad that modern day technology allows us to record and witness these events, so that hopefully some day people will see this for what it truly is; an immoral atrocity, and nothing that a loving god would prescribe as punishment for, in this case, the attraction to another human being.

"Religion is the binky of a teen-age humanity."
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02-01-2012, 09:10 PM
RE: Human Empathy.
What about a descriptive (I mean mega descriptive) of something a little more individual or personal? What if someone described in detail something similar to the last video?

In college we were given case scenarios to deal with for counselling and some of them would leave me distraught for days, having never met or seen photos of the people involved.
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02-01-2012, 09:31 PM
RE: Human Empathy.
(02-01-2012 09:10 PM)LadyJane Wrote:  What about a descriptive (I mean mega descriptive) of something a little more individual or personal? What if someone described in detail something similar to the last video?

In college we were given case scenarios to deal with for counselling and some of them would leave me distraught for days, having never met or seen photos of the people involved.

I think we're pretty much all on the same page. We as atheists understand that we can have morals, empathy and love without an invisible sky daddy to have to make rules to show us how to behave. It's the believers who just can't understand how that can be possible. Sad. And dangerous.

"Religion is the binky of a teen-age humanity."
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