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"2012": Opening a Passage into the Future?

 
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Old 17-Apr-2010, 10:50 AM (10:50)     1        39045
ouinon
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Default "2012": Opening a Passage into the Future?

Watched "2012" yesterday.

As expected some awesome special effects, especially in the scenes of escape from California etc, planes, one train, and an automobile. Some sympathetic semi-humorous scenes of family life, meetings with very strange strangers, and so on, again in the earlier part of the film. And a seriously clunky supposedly suspenseful but actually exasperating and overlong section devoted to the our hero's struggles with a mechanical door/gate, plus the annoying, if apparently obligatory, loss/sacrifice of certain characters.

But, however mediocre, or simply bad, the plot/storyline, characterisation, etc clearly is at many points, what I woke up thinking this morning was that it may, ( correct me if I'm wrong ), be one of the very few films in the last 25 years or so which shows humans actively moving beyond cataclysmic disaster, in the near future.

A great many sci-fi films show civilisations in the distant future, or in parallel/fantasy worlds, and others show threats to our current one which are avoided, but I can't off hand think of any which start in our world now, in which humans deal with catastrophe, not by averting it, but by finding a way to survive it and begin again.

I may have forgotten some important exceptions to this, ( please remind me if so ), but if not it seems strange that cinema should have neglected this story line, whereas there are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of such scenarios in science fiction, ( short stories and novels ), involving escape to space-stations or spaceship "worlds"; the terra-forming of Mars or the moon; the creation of mini-ecosystems under domes; the building of underground cities, etc that sci-fi describes humans engaging in in order to survive various kinds of destruction/disaster on the planetary scale.

In "2012" it is a group of "arks" which are built, gigantic submarine style ships in which a few hundred thousand humans can wait out the period of earth's crust instability, the skies of volcanic ash, etc. The physics, geology, biology, etc of the storyline are totally unbelievable, ( not credible ), but the idea of humans actively finding a way to save a few "key" species, including our own, save something of our civilisation, and start again, is as far as I am aware, curiously rare, almost non-existent, in film, certainly in recent times.

Might this be because the atmosphere of imminent disaster/catastrophe, whether climatic, social, fuel based, biological, etc, which has been hovering over us for so many decades now has engendered so much fear that many people have stopped even thinking about the future, stopped imagining the future except as something run/organised/dealt with by machines/A.I.s/super computers, ( whether malevolently or benevolently, the essential bit being that humans won't be responsible )? ... This film may be unusual because it imagines humans trying to do something about the future?

Just my thoughts. Would love to hear others!
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Old 17-Apr-2010, 11:11 AM (11:11)     2        39046
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Great to see a review on this, ouinon, and many thanks!

I saw 2012 quite a while back; despite being rather a fan of catastrophe movies, I didn't like it that much. I am glad you liked it, since that makes for a better review; I would love to see some good catastrophe movies; any filming of The Day Of The Triffids that actually stayed close to the book and did the whole book would be wonderful (unlike the attempts to date), as would any filming of The Furies by Keith Roberts, or The Death Of Grass by John Christopher.
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Old 17-Apr-2010, 11:27 AM (11:27)     3        39047
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Originally Posted by Gurdur
Great to see a review on this, ouinon, and many thanks!

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Originally Posted by Gurdur
I saw 2012 quite a while back; despite being rather a fan of catastrophe movies, I didn't like it that much. I am glad you liked it, since that makes for a better review.
I'm not sure that I liked it exactly; I enjoyed some of the special effects, etc, but as I said above I think that the storyline and characterisation is basic to bad, and I would normally not recommend it at all ... except for this thought that there may be something "special" about the message.

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I would love to see some good catastrophe movies; any filming of The Day Of The Triffids that actually stayed close to the book and did the whole book would be wonderful (unlike the attempts to date), as would any filming of The Furies by Keith Roberts, or The Death Of Grass by John Christopher.
"The Day of the Triffids" is precisely the sort of thing I mean when I say that science fiction literature is stuffed with stories of people not managing to avert or avoid disaster, but experiencing it and finding a way to move on from there, survive and start again, whereas it seems to me that this is surprisingly rare in film.

I'm a fan of disaster movies too, but there are very few really good ones ... Wyndham's books are some of my favourites, ( though they are 50 years old now ), but there are many other more recent ones in short story form. Why has cinema failed so signally to transport them to the big screen, simply producing lots of "disaster-averted/avoided" ones instead?

There are a few which show disaster happening and people surviving by the skin of their teeth/grimly and often alone too, ( "28 Days Later" etc ), but almost none which offer a picture of large groups of people setting up new societies/civilisations after such a disaster, as if people don't believe that it is possible. ie. if disaster cannot be averted/avoided then there is nothing to be done.

Whereas "2012" suggests otherwise, as "The Day of the Triffids" did. It occurs to me that may be one reason, ( other than the abysmal writing ), why so many people find the story of "2012" sooo stupid; they have trouble believing that idea, they believe that a catastrophe not avoided is necessarily fatal.

Edit. Which begs the question; what does catastrophe mean? The ecologists etc tell us we are heading for one ... does that mean we will survive it or not? Maybe we need to "imagine" catastrophe as both unavoidable ( like death ) and yet not the end of the world, in order to start thinking about the future beyond the next five years.

.

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Old 17-Apr-2010, 07:24 PM (19:24)     4        39061
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ouinon View Post
But, however mediocre, or simply bad, the plot/storyline, characterisation, etc clearly is at many points, what I woke up thinking this morning was that it may, ( correct me if I'm wrong ), be one of the very few films in the last 25 years or so which shows humans actively moving beyond cataclysmic disaster, in the near future.
What about The Day After Tomorrow? Humanity fails to prevent the disaster and then we have to find new ways to live, primarily by everyone moving to the Third World.
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Old 17-Apr-2010, 07:44 PM (19:44)     5        39062
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What about The Day After Tomorrow? Humanity fails to prevent the disaster and then we have to find new ways to live, primarily by everyone moving to the Third World.
Absolutely; that was the only other recent one that seemed to be on the same track, and yet even that didn't show humans planning for the change, simply surviving and crawling to the nearest shelter afterwards.

What was so weird, and feels almost unique in the cinema, about "2012" is that humans realise that they can't avert the disaster, but set about planning and constructing the means to survive it, before it happens.

Edit. PS. It occurs to me that "Sunshine", by Danny Boyle, might fall into same category, but it feels too far away/distant, too far in the future to connect with "us" and "now", ( and in "28 Days Later", as in "The Day of the Triffids", there was no warning ).

.

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Old 17-Apr-2010, 08:19 PM (20:19)     6        39064
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Originally Posted by ouinon
It occurs to me that "Sunshine", by Danny Boyle, might fall into same category, but it feels too far away/distant, too far in the future to connect with "us" and "now", ( and in "28 Days Later", as in "The Day of the Triffids", there was no warning ).
And anyway "Sunshine", I just realised, is yet another "disaster averted/avoided" movie.

"The Changes Trilogy" by Peter Dickenson is a "without warning" disaster, so doesn't count either.

How many stories have actually been written or filmed which involve credible warnings of an unavoidable/inevitable catastrophe and humans planning and constructing to survive it? Is "2012" the first since "Noah's Ark"? ! Surely not. ... ... ... ?????????

( PS. The animated film "Le Prophetie des Grenouilles" does a version of Noah's Ark, but it doesn't "use" credible warnings; it just feels like a remake of Noah's Ark, and so lacks all suspense ).

.

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Old 17-Apr-2010, 10:31 PM (22:31)     7        39076
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As far as written stories go, I'm a fan of Robert R McCammon's "Swan Song" and Stephen King's "The Stand", but they both have more than their fair share of fantasy elements, so probably is not what you were looking for.
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Old 18-Apr-2010, 09:49 AM (09:49)     8        39092
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As far as written stories go, I'm a fan of Robert R McCammon's "Swan Song" and Stephen King's "The Stand", but they both have more than their fair share of fantasy elements, so probably is not what you were looking for.
I don't know "Swan Song", might have to investigate that, but have read "The Stand" and seen most of the TV film/series that they made of it. Wasn't bad; I particularly enjoyed the beginning/first few "days" in the story, before the overtly supernatural element kicked in.

But, if I remember correctly, the disaster is unexpected, out of the blue, and so no warnings or preparation would have been possible. I have forgotten why/how the group in the mountains comes together, but don't remember it being because of some master plan which had foreseen the plague ... I may be wrong though; it's a while since I read/saw it.

Thanks for the suggestions though. Could you say offhand if "Swan Song" matches those criteria, ( a fantasy aspect isn't necessarily a problem ).

I'm really intrigued by the relative absence of this specific story-line in the cinema, even if quite a lot of sci-fi, short stories at least, refer to or involve people preparing for unavoidable disasters after receiving warnings.

.
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Old 18-Apr-2010, 06:36 PM (18:36)     9        39103
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It's set during the cold war, so that's a yes and no deal. It's established in the first chapter, I think, that the president and military higher-ups knew but were in denial to a certain extent, so your average person gets hit really hard when the nukes fall.
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Old 18-Apr-2010, 08:42 PM (20:42)     10        39107
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I was thinking that if in fact "2012" is as rare and unprecedented ( since biblical times anyway ), in its depiction of an unavoidable disaster preceded by credible ( read "scientific" ) warnings which lead to humans planning and constructing a way for some of them to survive it, as it appears to be, then there's perhaps something very interesting about the role of ( the church of ) science to be explored here.

The "credible warnings" in the story of Noah's ark are those which Noah "hears" coming from god, and which he persuades his family and closest friends to pay attention to. The story is like a test of the credibility of such warnings and of the good intentions of god towards "his" people. The success of the ark is like a guarantee that "god" will guide "his" people right, look after them.

What if all the warnings which ( the church of ) science has been showering us with for decades now, that some form of disaster, ( whether climatic, fuel-based, biological, nuclear, etc ), is approaching increasingly fast were a similar stage in a relationship between humans and their new "god" science/objectivity? If we trust in science, take it seriously, then we should be planning and constructing the means to survive the environmental catastrophe that it is predicting, and those who survive it will see their survival as a guarantee of the credibility and the helpfulness of science for a long time to come.

And yet in the bible story it is quite clear that god is "responsible" for the disaster ... rather like Mafia protection rackets. As following the god of science and objectivity could be said to be responsible for the environmental threats.

I was just wondering whether human belief in gods, secular aswell as overtly religious ones, always goes through this sort of process, whether it is an almost inevitable stage in the relationship of worshipping any one thing/social construct to this extent.

.
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Old 18-Apr-2010, 08:59 PM (20:59)     11        39109
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I was just wondering whether human belief in gods, secular aswell as overtly religious ones, always goes through this sort of process, whether it is an almost inevitable stage in the relationship of worshipping any one thing/social construct to this extent.
Oh, what a fun idea to play with.... *makes a mental note to do some sometime*
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Old 19-Apr-2010, 12:11 AM (00:11)     12        39113
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*makes a mental note to do some sometime*
Do some "what"? :confused

I was also thinking that maybe it's something everybody does on a "small" scale, with any faith/belief in a "god", ( secular god/social construct etc ) , when it reachs a certain point/level/intensity, do whatever it seems to be telling you will help you survive and if you do survive, it will appear to be responsible for your emerging unscathed, so that you feel justified in sticking to it even more faithfully.

As if assigning cause to any one thing to the extent that believe it can save you, happens simultaneously with belief that it can cause disasters. And the experience of ordeals overcome, apparently with the help of "that thing", following its "orders", will confirm/affirm/reinforce your belief, "seal" the "bond".

Perhaps it is a "law" of cognitive "logic", or of the language of faith/belief and social constructs, that it is impossible to believe that something can save you without believing that it can cause disasters, and vice versa. Something intrinsic to, or strongly associated with ( belief in ) the construct which is "cause and effect".

So the more we believe that science can save us, from suffering and pain, the more we are likely ( unconsciously or not, perhaps depending on how aware we are of making a god of science ) to believe that it can cause disasters too. We will "see" more and more of these particular cause and effect relationships in all directions, because of raising up objectivity to the level of a god, and founding a church, science, in its name.

Just thoughts. I am already seeing how I have done this with food/diet.

Noah's Ark may be a brilliant depiction of this process, which would apply to any thing/social construct that we treat as a god capable of saving us.
.

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Old 19-Apr-2010, 12:55 AM (00:55)     13        39117
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PS. ... And that's where the sea/water covering everything up in Noah comes in; the role of the unconscious, that I was rabbiting on about on some other thread ( Gurdur's about volcanoes, zombies and disaster movies etc ) ...

Whenever you raise some social construct up to the level of a god apparently capable of saving you you simultaneously "create" a god apparently capable of destroying you, but you tend to hide that aspect of it, in the unconscious. But anyone who believes, for example, in the power of the social construct justice to save them/humanity will be equally vulnerable to/frightened of humanity/themselves being destroyed by injustice, ( and driven to fight injustice, terrified of disobeying the "rules" of that secular god ).

This is why "2012" is just box-office junk food, because it doesn't tell the two sides of the story; in "2012" Emmerich tells the story of believing the warnings of scientists, and of being saved by science and technology ... but the threat/disaster is supposedly caused by the sun, not science ... I can't remember if in "The Day after Tomorrow" science and technology is blamed for the global warming ... but if it is then they are two parts of the same story, which Emmerich may have "known" unconsciously because the opening scenes are so incredibly similar.

.

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Old 19-Apr-2010, 01:00 AM (01:00)     14        39118
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Quote:
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*makes a mental note to do some sometime*
Do some "what"? :confused

first some = that, in reference to playing with the idea...

I r intelligible when I'm distracted.
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Old 19-Apr-2010, 01:27 PM (13:27)     15        39128
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Ok!

I was thinking how weird it is though that if you believe that something, ( some social construct/secular god, whatever ), has the power to destroy you/cause disaster, it seems that you will automatically/inevitably believe, and find proof for, its apparently having the power to save you too.

Which is as bizarre as saying that because ( if ) we believe that death is an unavoidable, non-avertable disaster which will destroy us we must therefore at some level believe that it has the power to save us too, if we do what it tells us to do.

It seems that if you want to experience things as saving you then one of the most powerful ways to go about it, perhaps the only way to go about it, is to believe that something has the power to destroy you. If you want to believe that something helps you first believe that it hinders you, ( eg. believing that money hinders you you end up believing that it can save you, if you follow its rules ).

The mistake is to believe that something can help or save you without realising that you will also inevitably end up believing, and finding evidence for it as fact, that it can hinder or destroy you at the same time, ... if you do not follow/obey its rules. eg. to avoid being destroyed by science must be ever more objective about things. And people who believe in the power of science to save them from death do pour out thousands, even millions, of dollars in burnt ( or frozen ) and sacrificial offerings, to keep in good with their ( secular ) god.

I know that believing in the secular god which is truth as I have done/still do I am very afraid/wary of telling even the tiniest lies, in case truth will destroy me/cause a disaster as a result, ( perhaps why I am so hypersensitive to other people telling them too ), and people who believe in the power of love are afraid that they will be destroyed by love if they do not follow the rules of love, etc.

What are the rules of "death"? What must you do to obey "death"? Maybe the trick is to stop believing that it can destroy you, so that you don't hasten it, rush towards it, unconsciously commit suicide, or kill others, because driven by the unconscious belief that it saves.

Totally strange.

.

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Old 19-Apr-2010, 06:15 PM (18:15)     16        39136
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Ok!

I was thinking how weird it is though that if you believe that something, ( some social construct/secular god, whatever ), has the power to destroy you/cause disaster, it seems that you will automatically/inevitably believe, and find proof for, its apparently having the power to save you too.

Which is as bizarre as saying that because ( if ) we believe that death is an unavoidable, non-avertable disaster which will destroy us we must therefore at some level believe that it has the power to save us too, if we do what it tells us to do.
Not so bizarre, I think. Most people do have some fundamental need for balance, and I think the need to attribute the opposite affect to something from the initial one posed, or to create some opposing force to fill the need, is pretty natural.

Quote:
It seems that if you want to experience things as saving you then one of the most powerful ways to go about it, perhaps the only way to go about it, is to believe that something has the power to destroy you. If you want to believe that something helps you first believe that it hinders you, ( eg. believing that money hinders you you end up believing that it can save you, if you follow its rules ).

The mistake is to believe that something can help or save you without realising that you will also inevitably end up believing, and finding evidence for it as fact, that it can hinder or destroy you at the same time, ... if you do not follow/obey its rules. eg. to avoid being destroyed by science must be ever more objective about things. And people who believe in the power of science to save them from death do pour out thousands, even millions, of dollars in burnt ( or frozen ) and sacrificial offerings, to keep in good with their ( secular ) god.
Bold mine.

Fact, or truth? Simply because there's a little evidence for something doesn't necessarily make it truefact. In the words of Mark Twain, there's "lies, damned lies, and statistics". People can find "evidence" for anything if they look hard enough- The Law of Fives, it applies.

As evidence for my last set of statements, I submit the website of a gentleman I knew when I was living in California.

Don't laugh, he really believes this, and he advertises his website on his van. Like, he had a professional advertising job done on it.

Quote:
I know that believing in the secular god which is truth as I have done/still do I am very afraid/wary of telling even the tiniest lies, in case truth will destroy me/cause a disaster as a result, ( perhaps why I am so hypersensitive to other people telling them too ), and people who believe in the power of love are afraid that they will be destroyed by love if they do not follow the rules of love, etc.
I dunno about you, but in the case of the God Truth, I have to say I'm less worried about it destroying me, so much as I like having a clean conscience.

Although I really do appreciate the reputation I have as someone who doesn't lie. People who lie regularly don't realize how useful that kind of reputation is; when people know you're no liar, your word automatically holds a lot of weight in their minds. It's very nice.

Quote:
What are the rules of "death"? What must you do to obey "death"? Maybe the trick is to stop believing that it can destroy you, so that you don't hasten it, rush towards it, unconsciously commit suicide, or kill others, because driven by the unconscious belief that it saves.

Totally strange.
Dunno. Maybe I could take a leaf out of that one Piers Anthony book...

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Old 19-Apr-2010, 06:38 PM (18:38)     17        39139
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Makbawehuh
Most people do have some fundamental need for balance, and I think the need to attribute the opposite affect to something from the initial one posed, or to create some opposing force to fill the need, is pretty natural.
I'm suggesting that it may be inevitable/automatic though, not voluntary, conscious or within our control; that whenever you believe something has the power to destroy/hurt you you will simultaneously believe that it can save you, and whenever you believe that something has the power to help/save you you will experience it as having the power to hurt/destroy you too; that this is an unavoidable part of believing either about something; that it may be a cognitive "rule"/"law".

Eg. believing that death destroys us may mean that we unconsciously believe that it can save us, which might explain why some/many people don't seem to experience their own self-destructive/life-threatening behaviour as alarming, despite plenty of data about the risks involved, because at some level they have a genuine, if unsuspected, "death wish" because have not examined or even noticed the other side of believing that death destroys them, which is that it has the power to save them if they "obey" its commands, whatever they might be ... I started to imagine what they might be as I was falling asleep last night, but have forgotten what they were!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Makbawehuh
Quote:
Originally Posted by ouinon
The mistake is to believe that something can help or save you without realising that you will also inevitably end up believing, and finding evidence for it as fact, that it can hinder or destroy you at the same time, ... if you do not follow/obey its rules. eg. to avoid being destroyed by science must be ever more objective about things.
Simply because there's a little evidence for something doesn't necessarily make it true. People can find "evidence" for anything if they look hard enough- The Law of Fives, it applies.
Absolutely, that's what I meant; that one would/will almost inevitably "find" evidence for it being apparently true, because of believing it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Makbawehuh
As evidence for my last set of statements, I submit the website of a gentleman I knew when I was living in California. Don't laugh, he really believes this.
Yes, and the people who think that the Twin Towers were blown up by the CIA, etc. Yes, belief is very odd.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Makbawehuh
Maybe I could take a leaf out of that one Piers Anthony book...
That sounds fun, if the prose style and approach isn't too fantastical, surreal, cartoon-like; I don't tend to get into stuff that's too "self-consciously" allegory or satire. Thanks for link. Will look for an excerpt.

Edit. PS. I just read some on an Amazon "Look Inside", and it sounds intriguing. Hmm!

.

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Old 19-Apr-2010, 07:19 PM (19:19)     18        39148
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Makbawehuh
Most people do have some fundamental need for balance, and I think the need to attribute the opposite affect to something from the initial one posed, or to create some opposing force to fill the need, is pretty natural.
I'm suggesting that it may be inevitable/automatic though, not voluntary, conscious or within our control; that whenever you believe something has the power to destroy/hurt you you will simultaneously believe that it can save you, and whenever you believe that something has the power to help/save you you will experience it as having the power to hurt/destroy you too; that this is an unavoidable part of believing either about something; that it may be a cognitive "rule"/"law".
Often, but not necessarily so in the same figure. The reason why I say so is because once in a while you run into a figure that can do only one of those things, but when you look around you'll usually find an opposite number(s).

I submit Ahura Mazda and Angra Mainyu as evidence.

Quote:
Eg. believing that death destroys us may mean that we unconsciously believe that it can save us, which might explain why some/many people don't seem to experience their own self-destructive/life-threatening behaviour as alarming, despite plenty of data about the risks involved, because at some level they have a genuine, if unsuspected, "death wish" because have not examined or even noticed the other side of believing that death destroys them, which is that it has the power to save them if they "obey" its commands, whatever they might be ... I started to imagine what they might be as I was falling asleep last night, but have forgotten what they were!
You've got me there, though I'm going to stand by my insistance that a single force isn't always going to be able to do both of itself. Usually, but not always.

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Simply because there's a little evidence for something doesn't necessarily make it true. People can find "evidence" for anything if they look hard enough- The Law of Fives, it applies.
Absolutely, that's what I meant; that one would/will almost inevitably "find" evidence for it being apparently true, because of believing it.

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As evidence for my last set of statements, I submit the website of a gentleman I knew when I was living in California. Don't laugh, he really believes this.
Yes, and the people who think that the Twin Towers were blown up by the CIA, etc. Yes, belief is very odd.
'Tis indeed very strange, but I'd rather wander no other landscape.

Too much fun to be had in the human mind to want to be anywhere else!

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Maybe I could take a leaf out of that one Piers Anthony book...
That sounds fun, if the prose style and approach isn't too fantastical, surreal, cartoon-like; I don't tend to get into stuff that's too "self-consciously" allegory or satire. Thanks for link. Will look for an excerpt.

Edit. PS. I just read some on an Amazon "Look Inside", and it sounds intriguing. Hmm!
It's actually a really good book right up till the end, where it kills with corn... I think it kinda destroyed the feel he'd managed to build through the book, IMHO, but it was otherwise very good, and since I consider that a common failing of that particular author, I let it slide.

Books six and seven were also quite good, I thought. I liked the way he explored the concepts of good and evil.

Considering how much I enjoy (and enjoy literary playing with!) the greek pantheon, I suppose it's natural that I'd like the series... On the whole I liked it, though it was what I'd define as "typical Piers Anthony".
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Old 19-Apr-2010, 08:16 PM (20:16)     19        39155
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Not necessarily in the same figure. The reason why I say so is because once in a while you run into a figure that can do only one of those things, but when you look around you'll usually find an opposite number(s). I submit Ahura Mazda and Angra Mainyu as evidence.
Interesting. I was wondering about that, whether some are only in a sense "half" of the whole construct/"god", or whether it was cognitively possible to believe that something could only ever save you, never destroy you, and vice versa. I suspect that any "god" which one believes can only do the one, and not the other, would always have a hidden side, inextricably linked with it, if perhaps under another name, and would be the more "dangerous" to ones subjective peace of mind and/or clarity, for being ( perceived ) so one-sidedly.

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[ Belief ] is indeed very strange, but I'd rather wander no other landscape. Too much fun to be had in the human mind to want to be anywhere else!
Totally agree. It's a fascinating world in there!
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Old 19-Apr-2010, 09:08 PM (21:08)     20        39160
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I think in a sense there is a kind of evolution of belief, which I may need to blog on one of these days, cause even if it's not true, it's fun to think about. I'll do it after I get done with everything else. :P

Aaaaand now we're waaaaaay off topic, LOL.
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Old 20-Apr-2010, 01:58 AM (01:58)     21        39171
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... As evidence for my last set of statements, I submit the website of a gentleman I knew when I was living in California.
Why doesn't he link Stephen King to JFK's assassination too?

Last edited by Gurdur; 20-Apr-2010 at 02:04 AM (02:04).
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Old 20-Apr-2010, 02:02 AM (02:02)     22        39172
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..... What are the rules of "death"? What must you do to obey "death"? Maybe the trick is to stop believing that it can destroy you, so that you don't hasten it, rush towards it, unconsciously commit suicide, or kill others, because driven by the unconscious belief that it saves. ....
Death comes to us all in the end, without any rules; and no-one lives forever.

BTW, ouinon, do you see how your hypotheses here conflict with your hypotheses in the other thread? Specifically, you speak of "stop believing" here, while in the other thread you moot there is no such thing as free will at all. How are you going to stop believing in anything at all by choice if you have no free will at all about such decisions as to believe or to stop believing.
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Old 20-Apr-2010, 09:26 AM (09:26)     23        39179
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Ouinon, do you see how your hypotheses here conflict with your hypotheses in the other thread? Specifically, you speak of "stop believing" here, while in the other thread you moot there is no such thing as free will at all. How are you going to stop believing in anything at all by choice if you have no free will at all about such decisions as to believe or to stop believing.
I don't believe that need to have free will in order to stop or start believing in things. I believe that one changes ones beliefs according to data received.

So, in the above context, someone might start believing in the power of something to save them if they had seen/experienced a "disaster" apparently caused by that thing and survived it ...

[ ... and OMG I've just realised how, and exactly when, I came to believe in the power of food ( and the body ) to save me. Wow! ... ... ... That is sooo weird, and it fits my current hypothesis exactly ... So that's yet another belief which I can find evidence for, in the "experience" that I had, but "finding" it "under" this description, rather than under "moment of grace", for example, was quite a surprise, like something being suddenly illuminated. I have often wondered what triggered it all, or, more precisely, why what it triggered was faith in food ... ].

... and someone might start believing in the power of something to destroy them after they had seen or experienced themselves as being "saved" from disaster apparently with the help of that something.

It would always be subjective though; it's just that we have an almost infinite capacity to see patterns in things, and "being destroyed" and "being saved" are entirely subjective events in themselves too, such that we will, so long as our faith is great enough, always be able to "have" the appropriate experience.

I think that this phenomena has something to do with how cognition, ( fluid intelligence particularly ), and language, and the social construct which is "cause and effect", interact with each other. It's very interesting.

But the absence of free will is not a problem.

Edit. PS. But I realise that my use of language is not always free of the old turns of phrase about "wanting" and "deciding" which suggest the existence of free will, so that it might look self-contradictory. I put "quotes" around certain words, and try to phrase things so that free will is not referenced more than necessary, but a lot of the time I just use the usual language, as I still refer to science for authority on many things for example, out of habit. Thank you for pulling me up on it.

.

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Old 20-Apr-2010, 02:42 PM (14:42)     24        39183
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Ouinon, do you see how your hypotheses here conflict with your hypotheses in the other thread? Specifically, you speak of "stop believing" here, while in the other thread you moot there is no such thing as free will at all. How are you going to stop believing in anything at all by choice if you have no free will at all about such decisions as to believe or to stop believing.
I don't believe that need to have free will in order to stop or start believing in things. I believe that one changes ones beliefs according to data received.
Allow me to ask you a yes/no question, please, ouinon:

Are there ever any times you can make different decisions on the same data? Can you choose A or B on the basis of data X?

If yes, then you are talking free will, even if limited.

If no, why talk of "making decisions" at all, since you don't actually make any decisions, but only change as the input data changes you?
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Old 20-Apr-2010, 04:06 PM (16:06)     25        39185
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A yes/no question: Are there ever any times you can make different decisions on the same data? Can you choose A or B on the basis of data X?
I don't believe that I could make a different decision with exactly the same data, so my answer is no, but then I never ever have the same data twice. Time will have passed; "you can never step into the same river twice".

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If no, why talk of "making decisions" at all, since you don't actually make any decisions, but only change as the input data changes you?
That is true, which is why I increasingly ( but not yet always ) put words like "choose" and "decide" in quotes when I do use them.

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Old 20-Apr-2010, 09:19 PM (21:19)     26        39188
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Out of curiosity, Ouinon, where do you think your hypothesis would put someone who didn't believe they could be destroyed?
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Old 20-Apr-2010, 10:54 PM (22:54)     27        39191
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Where do you think your hypothesis would put someone who didn't believe they could be destroyed?
I suppose that they might still think that they could be harmed/hindered? In which case they could experience things as being able to help them, if not "save" them.

Or if they didn't believe that anything had the power to destroy or harm/hinder them then they would equally not experience anything as saving or helping them either?

Someone might claim that they believed that things could only ever help or save them, but I'd probably suspect them of unconscious fears about what those same things could do to hurt or destroy them, because if someone really did experience the entire universe as benevolent, I think they would be beyond experiencing things in it as helping them; they would feel so at one with the universe that the question of being "helped by it" would no longer seem very relevant. I don't know though. What do you think?

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Old 21-Apr-2010, 12:06 AM (00:06)     28        39194
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I think that if they had mastered the idea that the universe would never give them a terrible situation that couldn't be turned into an opportunity, it might very well free them from that vicious loop.

Couple that with some sort of a belief that even though the body will eventually die, their works and how they've touched the lives of others will go on, there's not a whole lot of room for salvation/destruction loop to work.
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Old 21-Apr-2010, 12:25 AM (00:25)     29        39195
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I think that if they had mastered the idea that the universe would never give them a terrible situation that couldn't be turned into an opportunity, it might very well free them from that vicious loop.
They believe that life/the universe is essentially benevolent, in other words ... ... .. if they "do the work" ( CBT style maybe ) to make it so, ( or "see it so" ), that is?

I believed something like that for 8 years, until I realised that, as far as I was concerned anyway, it meant that the only thing in the universe which had the power to destroy me or save me was myself. It was a surprisingly oppressive, and lonely, place to be in, and after several years of feeling as if I had Big Brother in my head making sure that I "did the work" ( to turn "terrible situations into opportunities" ), and reminding me that if I couldn't it must be my fault, I practically vomited the belief system up, ( psychically ). It was a huge and wonderful release.

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Old 21-Apr-2010, 12:35 AM (00:35)     30        39196
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..... I believed something like that for 8 years, until I realised that, as far as I was concerned anyway, it meant that the only thing in the universe which had the power to destroy me or save me was myself. It was a surprisingly oppressive, and lonely, place to be in, and after several years of feeling as if I had Big Brother in my head making sure that I "did the work" ( to turn "terrible situations into opportunities" ), and reminding me that if I couldn't it must be my fault, I practically vomited the belief system up, ( psychically ). It was a huge and wonderful release.
Well, this is why balance is so important. Some things we have zero control over, some things we think we can control but actually we can't, and some things we can control and should.

Yes, believing everything is under our control is oppresive, untrue and unhelpful.

But then, believing nothing is under our control is equally oppresive, untrue and unhelpful in the end.
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