Debate and Discussion

a Worlw Without Man
lothar at 8:46PM, July 11, 2010
posts: 1,299
joined: 1-3-2006
“i dont feel sorry for humans”
“ they deserve to go extinct”
“ poor Earth and all the little aminals that have to die along with man”

sentiments like these are not hard to find these days. i can understand the motivation for such self hating. these feelings are born of a sense of hoplessness and frustration and eventual anger.

my question is - Is there any worth in a world devoid of humanity ? do you believe that nature has any sense of itself or can it appreciate its own splender ? if we are to expect eventual extinction, then who fucking cares what is to become of everything else ? after all , if the universe only exists in our collective minds , then the universe dies with us. ….

what do you think ? am i just being an arrogant speciest human.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:45PM
ozoneocean at 10:26PM, July 11, 2010
posts: 26,046
joined: 1-2-2004
No, you're right lothar. The only reason we care at all for “nature” is because we are human. We imagine a false reality where us and it are separate, then we anthropomorphise it and give it a personality.
The earth without humans is the same either way, as is the rest of the life on this planet.
Disasters we cause like big oil spills are no different from the perspective of the fish and birds to disasters caused by the whether or geology- makes no difference to them.

The “no humans” idea is much like all suicidal justifications- completely self centred, a projection of our own concerns and worries on to the rest of the world.

-In saying that I don't justify environmental damage! Healthy diversity of life on the planet is good for US, as are healthy seas, functioning rain forests, and a stable climate. By impacting on them we are harming ourselves, not mother nature, Gia or any nature goddess version of an angry earth.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:36PM
isukun at 11:51PM, July 11, 2010
posts: 2,481
joined: 9-28-2006
This kind of reminds me of another debate I saw on another forum. That one was more about hunting, but long story short, I basically came to the conclusion that environmentalism is a movement fueled by our own survival instinct. It is never our goal to maintain “the” environment, it is instead our goal to maintain “our” environment.

As things are today, it may be better for nature to let some species die off or let the world adapt to climate change, but that isn't what is best for our species, so we try to maintain the status quo as best we can.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
bravo1102 at 11:52PM, July 11, 2010
posts: 4,097
joined: 1-21-2008
If you aren't you can't know what is. Saying there is any meaning to nature assumes that there is someone to know it. Tree falling in the woods. It's like the potential suicide always imagining that they'll be able to see the results of their own death. Nope, you'll be dead and gone and you'll see NOTHING! Somehow you'll still observe and interact if you don't exist? You wouldn't and can't and therefore it wouldn't matter because non-existence can't know existence. Just be. It is and you are and just be. Definitions obscure meaning.

We are a part of nature and affect it with everything we do. There has never been a culture that has not somehow manipulated their environment to further their own survival. It's scary to consider that the Amazon river basin shows evidence of having been manipulated in the distant past the same way the Nile was by the Egyptians. Even the society that appears to be most in harmony with nature is actively manipulating it to ensure they survive. It's just that the more you know nature you don't mind changing it. You live in it, surrounded by it so there is no change, just life. Kill that, hunt this, uproot the other because you live. We civilized types are alienated from it so we see it as outside us like Oz says.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
YuiPweeLi at 8:20PM, Aug. 5, 2010
posts: 39
joined: 7-25-2006
Well, compared to how long the earth has been around, the existence of the human race is such a short amount of time. I think it doesn't matter to the world if humans exist or not, or even if anything exists at all. The rest of the universe remains mostly unaffected by our existence, so in the grand scheme of things, it probably isn't worth much. But even if life on earth is insignificant it is still extraordinary!

As far as nature goes, life is very important and effects all other life, and though I don't think nature is ‘aware’ of it, it still works in a way to keep life in balance.

As part of a species that is faced with over population, I am concerned that nature will find a way to balance that out.

last edited on July 14, 2011 4:53PM
SpANG at 10:03AM, Aug. 6, 2010
posts: 3,105
joined: 1-1-2006
I am thinking it may be a bit arrogant to think that Humans would be the end of a “conscience-driven” society. It may take several millions of years, but eventually another species would take over just as we did (of course that's only if you “believe” in evolution I suppose.) Would this new species make the same mistakes? Whose to say.

As part of a species that is faced with over population…
This is an extremely subjective statement. You have to understand that the current supply of resources this planet has to offer cannot meet our consumption rate. So, in that selfish aspect, yes, we are “over-populated”. But that's really the only way.
“To a rational mind, nothing is inexplicable. Only unexplained.”
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:53PM
ozoneocean at 2:53PM, Aug. 6, 2010
posts: 26,046
joined: 1-2-2004
I am thinking it may be a bit arrogant to think that Humans would be the end of a “conscience-driven” society. It may take several millions of years, but eventually another species would take over just as we did (of course that's only if you “believe” in evolution I suppose.) Would this new species make the same mistakes? Whose to say.
It's not arrogant. It's realistic. Another species forming a human type society is quite hypothetical and another human centered fantasy in a lot of ways… we tend to think of other creatures following in our image or thinking Luke we do, mainly because it's hard not to, but it'd be quite unlikely.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:36PM
mlai at 6:31PM, Aug. 6, 2010
posts: 3,035
joined: 12-28-2006
Right. Sentience does not *have* to evolve. It is not the “pinnacle” of evolution. It is merely a possibility of evolution. You do not need to evolve sentience in order to become successful as a species.

Dinosaurs didn't need sentience and they were successful for epochs. Mammals took over because of a freak asteroid, not because mammals are superior. And then dinosaurs adapted successfully by becoming tiny. With wings.

And if our sentience changes our only homeworld to become inhospitable to our survival needs, before we can colonize off-world… then it just points to how sentience is not a good way to become successful.

Like the Ebola virus. It's one of the scariest viruses on the block, but it's not successful simply because it's TOO good at what it does.

Anyways, I'm more of the camp of “I don't feel sorry for humans because there's always more where they came from.”

FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:06PM
blindsk at 1:21AM, Aug. 7, 2010
posts: 560
joined: 5-5-2010
Similar to what has been said, I agree that a lot of the things we do to care for the environment are for our own selfish aesthetics, such as preventing littering, planting gardens, and preserving endangered species. The other animals could care less, unless it affects their daily routine, such as getting caught in some trash or something.

I firmly believe that a species like us was determined by probability. I mean, the early universe was nothing but a mixture of nuclear reactions that eventually expanded into the rocks and elements we see in our universe today. We as humans are able to recreate miniature models of our theories where the end result matches very closely the planets we observe today (including Earth!). Doesn't it seem likely that a planet like ours, capable of nurturing a cognitive species, would give way to something like the human race? As people in my line of work would put it, we are a product of the state of highest multiplicity. Chances also yield that Earth potentially only sustains a highly adaptable race. And…well, I'm not sure if we've proven that yet, but I believe we are getting there.

This is why it's been so interesting lately to discover possible habitable planets. So far we can only match the conditions that we know to suitable planet that matches. So in the end, is a planet even possible that doesn't have a species like ours? I say to that - it's highly unlikely, eventually something like the human race will arise.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:25AM

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