Are people different?

Discussion in 'Human Science' started by Roman, Nov 12, 2006.

  1. Bells Staff Member

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    I agree. Although he should have added.. 'which can lead to discontentment'.

    The whole notion of 'sameness' is quite boring if one thinks about it. Imagine driving down a street where all the houses and gardens are exactly the same and identical. How... boring. Sure we may feel a sense of contentment, as though we feel at home knowing that all is the same and as it should be. But human beings, or most human beings, do have imagination and even if all were brainwashed into thinking or being the same, at some point or other, there would be that one individual who broke the mould and became different.

    Imagine a child living in such a street, where everyone and everything is the same. What would this child's imagination be? Would it reflect what was or what could be? That's what it comes down to in the end doesn't it? As Baron pointed out, we all like to imagine 'what could be' and no amount of being the same could breed that out of the human race.
     
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  3. Roman Banned Banned

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    So people are are different.
    Are some people better than others?
    Or is everyone equal, regardless of their... strengths and weaknesses.
     
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  5. Roman Banned Banned

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    Not only is sameness boring, it doesn't make for very good social bonds. Knowledge of the Other, an Outsider, someone different, you have a polarizing effect. Very effective for rabble rousing and mobilizing angry mobs.
     
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  7. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    My perspective on the statement was a little different.

    I think of familiarity in terms of the known versus the unknown making one less suspicious of differences in people of different cultural outlook, religion, language, ethnic origin etc.
     
  8. superluminal I am MalcomR Valued Senior Member

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    Indeed.
     
  9. draqon Banned Banned

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    Nothing in universe can theoretically be the same, that goes with invasive chaotical substances like humans.
     
  10. Bells Staff Member

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    I knew there was a reason why I liked your posts.

    You're exactly correct. The difference in one individual in a society where everything and everyone is the same would result in that individual becoming the 'other' or the 'outsider'. Imagine the child once again in such a society. He would be ostracised by his community, family, friends. He would be seen to be a danger due to his being different, or just not being the same as every other. He'd have two choices. Ignore his own differences and become as all others or admit that he is different and simply be. Now if he chooses the latter, he instantly becomes the outsider and is deemed a danger as he could just influence another into his way of thinking, and then they could influence more, and so on. If he becomes as everyone else, society is safe again from any 'outside' influence and the feeling of comfort in sameness reigns once again.

    I equate it to people who are in cults for example. All think the same and are the same, believe in the same thing, say the same thing. Any outsider is treated differentially and with caution as they are seen to be different and pose a danger to their way of life. If one within such a community decides to break out and simply stop believing as the others around them do, they are instantly ostracised and seen as outcast. They become a danger to the hive or collective, so to speak.

    True. But look at what happens when someone dares speak outside 'the box'. Who dares to voice a different opinion or belief. They are instantly ostracised and treated with suspicion. We sometimes forget that it is our individual differences that make us unique. We aren't all the same. Sure you can have all of one race (for example) living in one community, sharing the same culture, religion, language, ethnicity. But even then, all won't be the same. Not all will believe as their neighbour do. The society, in all its comfort in sameness, can become secret and withdrawn from the rest. People within such a society who may be somehow different go to ground and seek out a secret existance, lest they face rejection by those around them. Trust can be compramised as those who feel differently, however slight, become suspicious of his neighbours, even though they are all meant to be the same, just in case one finds out his little secret existance. Even in a society where all is the same, suspicion can still bloom.
     
  11. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    But compared to a society where all are homogeneous, a heterogeneous society has a broader outlook. Familiarity with people of different ethnic origins for example, makes them more "real" to us. An effort has to be made to decide whether there will be constant conflict due to differences or whether all people will have a voice and will be allowed to maintain their differences without overt conflict. In a mixed society, sufficient rational thinking, debate and interaction as well as a desire for communal harmony should thus result in better understanding (rather idealistic, I know). This would of course require some generally agreed regulations of behaviour to be followed

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  12. draqon Banned Banned

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    I, being one of those people.

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  13. Bells Staff Member

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    As idealistic as it might be, there's still the dream of what could be, regardless of the spectrum of belief.

    For example. A few years ago my parents decided to have a big change. They'd worked hard and for their retirement, decided to move to a warmer climate. They'd previously lived in a multicultural community and street so they were never aware of any 'differences' in regards to how they were perceived or how they perceived others. However all this changed when they moved. Their new neighbourhood consisted of no one of other races or cultures. My parents were not born in Australia and both have olive skin and both speak english with a very strong french accent. Their new home was built in an all Australian, white neighbourhood. I'll admit they stood out. But they didn't care. I think at first their neighbours were wary. After all, who were these two individuals who'd just built their home on their street, who did not speak english as they did, who were darker than they were, who had a large vegetable garden growing in their back yard, etc, instead of the tropical magazine like gardens that others had in the neighbourhood? They'd moved from an urban area to one that was in the bush with massive trees and huge blocks of land. But they were different to the rest. They were friendly towards their neighbours, smiled or waved when they passed them, but they never forced themselves or their individual culture on anyone else. They simply lived their newly acquired quiet retired lives. After 5 years they are now the darlings of the street and neighbourhood. Half the street come to them for freshly grown 'exotic' vegetables and fruit (my father is a rabid gardener with an extensive vegetable garden in the back) as well as roses for the wedding bouquet of one daughter of a neighbour as he grows a beautiful old english rose garden at the side of the house (which apparently featured strongly in the girl's wedding photos) and my mother has become the favourite of all the children and their parents as she's now teaching half of them french. In their being different, they have slotted into this all white, anglo saxon neighbourhood better than most would have imagined. They did not change their identity or their culture and language and neither did their neighbours. They simply are there and they are the individuals they always were and they live their lives as they see fit. They are different, but it's their differences which have made them unique in their new neighbourhood.
     
  14. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    I really like how your post reads like a realistic picture of my theoretical view.

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  15. leopold Valued Senior Member

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    oh, okay. my mistake.
     
  16. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

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    People are different, they come in good and bad.
     
  17. redarmy11 Registered Senior Member

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    So does everyone think that people are more different or are they more the same?

    I think they're more the same.
     
  18. draqon Banned Banned

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    well all people are the same and all people are different at the same time.

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  19. redarmy11 Registered Senior Member

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    Yes we know that!! But which is most?

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  20. draqon Banned Banned

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    oh gush.
     
  21. TimeTraveler Immortalist Registered Senior Member

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    I don't fear difference. I recognize you and I are a different gender, but I don't fear you. I do discriminate, I just don't discriminate based on physical differences, or material differences. I don't really care how you look, or what you eat, or what language you speak, it's a matter of how much damage you are doing to yourself, to others, to our community, etc.

    If I met you and the first thing you do is go punch a random person in the face, I'm going to view you as I view violent aggressive people. If I meet you and the first thing you do is rob someone, I'm going to view you as a crminal. If when I meet you, the only thing on your mind is how to do harm to me, or just plain wickedness, I'm going to view you as a wicked person. You are what you do, thats a common sense natural law. If you steal from me, then you are a thief. If you lie to me then you are a liar. If you beat people up for, then you are an aggressor. If you destroy shit then you are a hoodlum or hooligan.

    At the core of all these sorts of actions that define who a person is, you can sense the core of the invidivual, their soul, their true nature, and this is how you discriminate. You decide if you can or cannot be friends with them based on their nature as an individual, and based on their character. If they routinely backstab their friends, or if they are just, naturally wicked, you are going to judge them as such and thats just how it is.

    So, someone like you, from what I know about you, arent anything close to being a wicked person. Your differences are harmless to me. You are not going to harm me, in fact, based on what I know about how your mind works, we already know there are certain things you just arent capable of doing, and arent likely to do, if you can know a person on this level theres no need for discrimination, you know they will limit themselves and make themselves less harmful to others.

    However if someone is known to have no limits, and harms others freely, and essentially all the time, that changes the entire calculus when dealing with them. Discrimination allows you to KNOW a person on a deep enough level to, based on their innate character and instincts, come to conclusions about people.

    So yes, you and I are different, but not so different that I'd have to worry about you losing your mind and physically attacking me for no reason. If we are THAT kind of different, then chances are, we will have a personality clash. If it's superficial differences, like if we disagree on cats or dogs, or on which catfood is best, or whatever, we will argue alot, and maybe stop talking to each other, but it will never lead to anything serious or violent.

    So you see, a key difference between individuals, is how violent a person is internally. A person who is naturally violent, thinks in a completely different way from a person who is naturally non-violent, these two people are different. The violent thinker may not be wicked, they may have common sense, they may be rational, but if you arent a violent thinker then you automatically know there is a difference between you and them, a line in the sand. The more violent this thinker is, the more clear the difference becomes, until it reaches the point where you say "this person is SICK!" or whatever it is that non violent thinkers think to themselves.

    Once again we are talking about thoughts, we must remember that some people can't even stand to watch violent movies while other people literally get off and get turned on by the sight of blood. These are differences.

    The main differences

    violent or non violent
    passive or aggressive
    submissive or dominant
    controllable or uncontrollable
    ethical or unethical

    Then you have the more nuanced traits which allow a person to be classified as good or evil, usually not based solely on traits but actions.

    Evil being, if a person not only has violent thoughts, but is constantly thinking up the most violent sadistic ways to harm massive amounts of people.

    Good being, if a person not only has healing/caring thoughts, but is constantly thinking up the most innovative ways to help massive amounts of people.

    At some point, Good people commit evil acts, and evil people commit good acts, this can happen for a lot of reasons, sometimes because even the most good and pure, or the most wicked and evil, make decisions which go against their principles from time to time. The reason for this is, sometimes you have to do something good to accomplish greater evil, or sometimes you have to do something evil to accomplish greater good. However if you look at a persons entire history, or as much of it as you can find, you'll easily figure out if the person is good or evil based on lifestyle.

    If a person is in prison doing a triple life sentence, chances are they've done a LOT of evil shit to get there. If a person is like mother teresa on the other hand, always trying to help other people, chances are they've sacrificed a lot to get there. Most people however, are completely unaware of character and judge based on superficial qualities, like physical appearances.

    Person X looks like a thug so he/she must be.
    Person Y looks like a gold digger so he/she must be.
    Person Z looks like a thief, so he/she must be.
    Person A sounds like a lying bastard so they must be lying.
    Person B sounds like a sneaky jerk so he or she must be.
    Person C sounds like a miserable snob, so he or she must be.

    Very rarely do people actually think "Person D acts like a fucking asshole, therefore they ARE one.". If people actually started paying close attention to how people are acting, they'd see the differences right away.
     
  22. draqon Banned Banned

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    I feel like person A-Z and 1-infinity can all get along well.
     
  23. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    Compared to what?

    They are more the same when comparing an apple and a turd. They are more different when comparing a E coli with a neighboring E coli which just split up.
     

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