Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
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14-08-2017, 04:48 AM
Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
Should our main focus and priority in life be to enjoy it?

There's so much things to learn and knowledge to gain if you decide to go down this path. It's normal to be curious about this or that and want to learn about it. Is it a waste of time if your learning just to acquire new knowledge.

What's the point of learning so much stuff since we're all going to die. It will all die with you when you die. Since we have a limited amount of time shouldn't we just focus on being happy and having fun and everything related to that.

I'm kinda just rambling. I felt I had to write about this because I've learned about different subjects and recently realized that it may just have been a big waste of time. I forgot that life is short and I shouldn't be wasting it.
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14-08-2017, 04:59 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
I don't see it as an either/or choice. I enjoy learning so learning new things is part of being happy. It also helps generate new ideas and interests and other ways to increase happiness or avoid problems. I could never see learning as a waste of time.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
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14-08-2017, 05:23 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
(14-08-2017 04:59 AM)unfogged Wrote:  I don't see it as an either/or choice. I enjoy learning so learning new things is part of being happy. It also helps generate new ideas and interests and other ways to increase happiness or avoid problems. I could never see learning as a waste of time.

For example topics that probably dont affect your life. Learning about a celebrities personal life, learning how airplanes are made, how lions hunt, etc. By affect I mean things that don't benefit you in any way.

Say I learn about astronomy. Then I realize I now know a lot about space and other related things. What have I gained from this, nothing really. Compare that to something like health. I may not be interested in learning about it but I do have much to gain from learning about it
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14-08-2017, 05:31 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
(14-08-2017 05:23 AM)yologuy001 Wrote:  
(14-08-2017 04:59 AM)unfogged Wrote:  I don't see it as an either/or choice. I enjoy learning so learning new things is part of being happy. It also helps generate new ideas and interests and other ways to increase happiness or avoid problems. I could never see learning as a waste of time.

For example topics that probably dont affect your life. Learning about a celebrities personal life, learning how airplanes are made, how lions hunt, etc. By affect I mean things that don't benefit you in any way.

Say I learn about astronomy. Then I realize I now know a lot about space and other related things. What have I gained from this, nothing really. Compare that to something like health. I may not be interested in learning about it but I do have much to gain from learning about it

You're looking at things from a very utilitarian viewpoint. What's the "use" of music? Art? Sport? It doesn't do a goddamn thing for survival really. Should we chuck these things all out? Why should learning just for pleasure be a problem?

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If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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14-08-2017, 05:36 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
Also one notable feature of knowledge is it often is useful later or in ways that people don't expect. An example that I can think of offhand is General Relativity. Firstly, general relativity itself makes use of Reimannian geometry which at the time it was developed was more or less just a thing that pure mathematicians were interested in. General relativity itself has myriad applications and areas where it is useful which weren't at all apparent at the time it was developed, not least of which are GPS, nuclear power etc.

We'll love you just the way you are
If you're perfect -- Alanis Morissette
(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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14-08-2017, 05:47 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
(14-08-2017 05:23 AM)yologuy001 Wrote:  
(14-08-2017 04:59 AM)unfogged Wrote:  I don't see it as an either/or choice. I enjoy learning so learning new things is part of being happy. It also helps generate new ideas and interests and other ways to increase happiness or avoid problems. I could never see learning as a waste of time.

For example topics that probably dont affect your life. Learning about a celebrities personal life, learning how airplanes are made, how lions hunt, etc. By affect I mean things that don't benefit you in any way.

I don't spend any time on celebrity gossip but even that can provide lessons in what you should or should not do in your own life. Knowledge is malleable and understanding how things work gives you more options in all areas of your life.

Quote:Say I learn about astronomy. Then I realize I now know a lot about space and other related things. What have I gained from this, nothing really. Compare that to something like health. I may not be interested in learning about it but I do have much to gain from learning about it

As I said before, I enjoy learning for its own sake even when there is no immediate practical application. It gives me pleasure which makes it worthwhile.

Don't you think people like this could use a lesson in astronomy? They'd be able to stop wasting so much time and energy on nonsense.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
America July 4 1776 - November 8 2016 RIP
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14-08-2017, 05:48 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
(14-08-2017 04:48 AM)yologuy001 Wrote:  Should our main focus and priority in life be to enjoy it...

Is it a waste of time if your learning just to acquire new knowledge. What's the point of learning so much stuff since we're all going to die. It will all die with you when you die...

This is an extremely self-defeating, fatalistic viewpoint, and not conducive to any sort of ongoing enjoyment of the life you apparently wish for. And if you do choose to live by that view of life, then you'll be guaranteed to stagnate both physically and mentally—and ultimately end up miserable and isolated from society.

And the notion that the knowledge you acquire throughout your life dies with you is also incorrect. You may not realise it, but the average mature-age person has passed on, even indirectly, a wealth of knowledge, expertise, vocational training, and worldly viewpoints to plenty of other people—such as his/her peers, their children and siblings, work colleagues, and the rest of the collective society.

—I can only guess your cynicism is fuelled by youth? Consider

I'm a creationist... I believe that man created God.
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14-08-2017, 05:58 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son.


Dean Wormer


Smartass
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14-08-2017, 06:02 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
(14-08-2017 04:48 AM)yologuy001 Wrote:  Should our main focus and priority in life be to enjoy it?

I enjoy learning.
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14-08-2017, 06:08 AM
RE: Is gaining knowledge a waste of time since we're all going to die?
(14-08-2017 04:48 AM)yologuy001 Wrote:  What's the point of learning so much stuff since we're all going to die.

What is the alternative? Go through our seemingly meaningless existence dumb and unaware, essentially just doing enough to get by? This reminds me of a common complaint I started to hear (and occasionally use) around my freshman year in high school.

I believe the main purpose to strive for knowledge is personal satisfaction and to a lesser extent creating knowledge for ours and future generations. Libraries are full of knowledge that others before us have spent countless hours compiling. Ideas for computers, smart phones, penicillin, air conditioning, vehicles, etc., were not just willed into existence. People had to know "stuff" to create those things. I'm confident that many of the things we take for granted now were not the result of someone saying, "Hold my beer and watch this!!!"

But you don't have to be an inventor of great things to enjoy knowledge. Knowing "stuff" is a joy in itself. Being able to answer simple questions either with the answer or the ability to find it is much more agreeable than looking like a deer in the headlights (at least to me).

Here's a fun little list of some accidental discoveries by people who knew a thing or two. How much more drab would life be without Viagra and all of the subsequent jokes?

It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out.
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