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Author Topic:   Young Know-it-alls
Dubious Drewski
Member (Idle past 641 days)
Posts: 73
From: Alberta
Joined: 02-04-2006


Message 1 of 72 (382203)
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


Here's an odd topic I wish to discuss.

I have certain beliefs about my world. The problem I have with this is that I'm very sure about what I believe. Certain things such as hard determinism(Every physical action is caused by some prior action), agnosticism, freedom of speech UNLESS your words deliberately and needlessly harm (Muhammed cartoons, anyone?), evolution, etc.

If I run some of these beliefs through brutally honest critique, like I often do, they still seem to hold. I am 23 and have a Bachelor of Fine Arts. Common sense tells me that I should not have final answers regarding anything.

My concern is that I see myself as a headstrong and naive guy who's got alot to learn, but at the same time, I cannot find flaws in my thinking.

I know I must be wrong about some or all of my beliefs, but currently, I don't see how. I'm worried I might not have any more intellectual revalations as I age.

Have any of you been in this position? Can you remember a time when you were so headstrong about your beliefs and how it affected your interaction with the world? Should I worry? What can I expect in the future?

If this gets promoted at all, I'll be happy with any category.


Replies to this message:
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 Message 5 by crashfrog, posted 02-03-2007 9:37 PM Dubious Drewski has responded
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AdminNem
Inactive Member


Message 2 of 72 (382218)
02-03-2007 8:01 PM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
  
Hyroglyphx
Member
Posts: 5622
From: Austin, TX
Joined: 05-03-2006


Message 3 of 72 (382221)
02-03-2007 8:15 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


My concern is that I see myself as a headstrong and naive guy who's got alot to learn, but at the same time, I cannot find flaws in my thinking.

That's because nobody holds fast to things they don't actually believe in. Just because we don't see our own flaws doesn't negate their existence.

I know I must be wrong about some or all of my beliefs, but currently, I don't see how. I'm worried I might not have any more intellectual revalations as I age.

Don't worry... You will.

Have any of you been in this position? Can you remember a time when you were so headstrong about your beliefs and how it affected your interaction with the world? Should I worry? What can I expect in the future?

It sounds like you're a very reasonable person, so I wouldn't worry about you being such a jerk that you'll dismiss anyone else's input without an honest evaluation.

I think what you should expect is to be surprised with how your central beliefs will synthesize with time, be it good or bad, when you look back in retrospect.


"A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, 'darkness' on the walls of his cell." -C.S. Lewis
This message is a reply to:
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anastasia
Member (Idle past 4063 days)
Posts: 1857
From: Bucks County, PA
Joined: 11-05-2006


Message 4 of 72 (382232)
02-03-2007 9:27 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


Drewsky writes:

Can you remember a time when you were so headstrong about your beliefs and how it affected your interaction with the world?

Sure, it was only yesterday. I hope that by tomorrow today will be but a stepping-stone.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Dubious Drewski, posted 02-03-2007 7:13 PM Dubious Drewski has not yet responded

    
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 5 of 72 (382236)
02-03-2007 9:37 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


My concern is that I see myself as a headstrong and naive guy who's got alot to learn, but at the same time, I cannot find flaws in my thinking.

Then you don't know enough. You need to expose yourself to new experiences and information.

What can I expect in the future?

That you'll have experiences that directly contradict what you think is true about the world. If I were you I'd seek those out as soon as possible. Foreign travel, perhaps? Or read a book on a subject you haven't studied extensively.

(Muhammed cartoons, anyone?)

What harm was caused by that speech? And can't enforced censorship cause harm, too?

Certain things such as hard determinism(Every physical action is caused by some prior action)

Well, that's mostly true, but there are exceptions. For instance, atoms decay at random.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Dubious Drewski, posted 02-03-2007 7:13 PM Dubious Drewski has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by Dubious Drewski, posted 02-03-2007 10:55 PM crashfrog has responded

  
arachnophilia
Member (Idle past 88 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004


Message 6 of 72 (382251)
02-03-2007 10:20 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


bfa's
I am 23 and have a Bachelor of Fine Arts.

ha! i laugh at your bfa!

actually, no, i don't. i don't quite have mine yet, and i'm 23 as well. but i can tell you at the end of my degree, i don't feel that i've learned anything significant at all. certainly, any of the fine-arts stuff i've learned has been incidental to my classes. they haven't taught me any of the skills i had hoped to learn. i still can't paint worth a damn. all they talk about this damned conceptual art stuff, as if skill doesn't matter. and it's all mind-rotting drivel.

My concern is that I see myself as a headstrong and naive guy who's got alot to learn, but at the same time, I cannot find flaws in my thinking.

neither can the sociopath. or possibly, anyone else. if we could see the flaws in our reasoning, we'd probably think something else. although i was caught slightly off guard when i pointed out a flaw in a professor's reasoning, and he admitted that he was aware of it and chose to believe differently anyways. *shrug*

truth be told, you sound like you have a healty degree of doubt. nobody can really foresee everything. there are always things to be learned that we were not even aware that we do not know. as we get older, we learn more and more. not just new things, but that we don't know other things. when our worlds are very small and young, we think we know everything because our experience is so limited. but as we age, we are exposed to more information that tends to complicate things. makes having answers harder.


אָרַח

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
 Message 9 by Dubious Drewski, posted 02-03-2007 11:13 PM arachnophilia has responded
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Dubious Drewski
Member (Idle past 641 days)
Posts: 73
From: Alberta
Joined: 02-04-2006


Message 7 of 72 (382263)
02-03-2007 10:55 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by crashfrog
02-03-2007 9:37 PM


First, nemesis juggernaut:
quote:
Just because we don't see our own flaws doesn't negate their existence.
Of course. I didn't mean to imply that I thought I was flawless! I'll just as readily list off my problems and the things I do not understand about the world. Like I said, I highly value objective criticism, even of myself.

crashfrog:

quote:
... you'll have experiences that directly contradict what you think is true about the world. If I were you I'd seek those out as soon as possible. Foreign travel, perhaps? Or read a book on a subject you haven't studied extensively.
Way ahead af you! When I worked in Malaysia last summer for a few months, I fully embraced the Muslim culture and also eagerly learned about the Indian and Chinese ways of life (Which is why I was so interested in Buddhism a while back).

I am fairly camera-shy, so I purposefully go out and join plays, audition for tv and movie roles, etc. (I got a part as an extra in a local tv series and I got some screentime as an extra in Brokeback Mountain, etc) I do it because it terrifies me and I want to experience what I would otherwise avoid.

I no longer hold any religious beliefs, but I've watched and enjoyed The Nativity Story, The Ten Commandments, Passion of the Christ, etc. I read these forums and try to be as fair as possible when reading a post written by someone I disagree with. I'll even read a bit of the bible now and then (I have 3 versions) for reference.

So as you can see, I'm actively looking for new views on my life.

quote:
quote:

(Muhammed cartoons, anyone?)

What harm was caused by that speech? And can't enforced censorship cause harm, too?



I'm actually referring to this: The 12 Danish editorial cartoons. And I believe the saying goes "Your right to swing your fist ends where my face begins" <-- I strongly believe in that quote and that is what I'm referring to.

quote:
quote:
Certain things such as hard determinism(Every physical action is caused by some prior action)

Well, that's mostly true, but there are exceptions. For instance, atoms decay at random.



I should probably post this back on my Randomness thread, but I'll briefly say it here. Just because no cause for atomic decay can be found, it does not prove that none exists. For everything in existence to follow the rules of determinism except for atoms themselves is a bit strange. But like I said, that's off topic.
This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 8 of 72 (382266)
02-03-2007 11:05 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 10:55 PM


So as you can see, I'm actively looking for new views on my life.

So you are, and I think you're very likely to see dividends from that. Will it always be sudden, road-to-Damascus moments where your perspective is irrevocably changed? Or will illumination for you be gradual?

Who knows? Let the evidence guide you. The odds that you're in for no more surprises at age 23 are low, to say the least. Are you married? You're in for one there, let me tell you.

And I believe the saying goes "Your right to swing your fist ends where my face begins" <-- I strongly believe in that quote and that is what I'm referring to.

I'm familiar with the cartoons to which you were referring, which is why I'm having trouble understanding your position on the subject. I see it as two related moral acts - the creation of the cartoons by the cartoonists, and the violent response of some of those who were offended.

The first I don't have a problem with. Many of the cartoons told uncomfortable truths and expressed genuine viewpoints. But responding to offensive statements with violence is always wrong.

For me, it's not yet clear who is the fist and who is the nose, in your view. Maybe this isn't on topic, exactly.

Just because no cause for atomic decay can be found, it does not prove that none exists.

True, but it's very suggestive that the most accurate models in QM are the ones that purport no deterministic underlying hidden causes.

For everything in existence to follow the rules of determinism except for atoms themselves is a bit strange.

"Everything but atoms" seems a little bit like an understatement. Atoms are everything, everything physical anyway, so "atoms" encompasses a considerable majority of "things" in the universe. Coarse determinism as we perceive it may simply be an emergent property of fine randomness at the lowest levels.

Eh, neither one of these are the topics of discussion. I bring them up only as positions you take which I see as assailable, and which you may want to discuss if being proven wrong is your goal. :D


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Dubious Drewski
Member (Idle past 641 days)
Posts: 73
From: Alberta
Joined: 02-04-2006


Message 9 of 72 (382268)
02-03-2007 11:13 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by arachnophilia
02-03-2007 10:20 PM


Re: bfa's
quote:
but i can tell you at the end of my degree, i don't feel that i've learned anything significant at all.

The most valuable things I learned were in my philosophy classes. The importance of these things overshadows what I learned about making art by miles.[/quote]

quote:

they haven't taught me any of the skills i had hoped to learn. i still can't paint worth a damn. all they talk about this damned conceptual art stuff, as if skill doesn't matter.

As far as I could tell, the professors were there to give you conceptual guidance, that's all. They might advise on how to hold a pencil or what colour harmony is, but you can't expect skill to be handed to you, that's the part you have to work for.

(It's all about the homework.)


This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by arachnophilia, posted 02-03-2007 10:20 PM arachnophilia has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 11 by arachnophilia, posted 02-03-2007 11:34 PM Dubious Drewski has not yet responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 16362
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.4


Message 10 of 72 (382271)
02-03-2007 11:28 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


Drewsky writes:

I am 23 and have a Bachelor of Fine Arts.

I have socks older than that (none of them has a Fine Arts degree).

I used to know everything too, but I've forgotten a lot.


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This message is a reply to:
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arachnophilia
Member (Idle past 88 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004


Message 11 of 72 (382272)
02-03-2007 11:34 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 11:13 PM


Re: bfa's
The most valuable things I learned were in my philosophy classes. The importance of these things overshadows what I learned about making art by miles.

my art classes might as well be philosophy classes! lol.

As far as I could tell, the professors were there to give you conceptual guidance, that's all. They might advise on how to hold a pencil or what colour harmony is, but you can't expect skill to be handed to you, that's the part you have to work for.

(It's all about the homework.)

well, it seems to me that there a number of technical things that could be taught as well. for instance, take my concentration, photography.

i could be learning the zone system, fine manipulation of chemistry and exposure, lighting technique, composition, photoshop, etc. of course, you learn by doing. i'm not expecting skills to be handed to me... just, you know, covered in class.

some basic stuff is covered, sure. how to operate the camera. the relationship of aperture to depth of field, basically how to operate a darkroom. but there's so much more technical information that i could never learn in a million years putzing around in my bathroom under a safelight.

all the concentration seems to be on how you bullshit some kind of meaning into things, and what you say about the concept, not on the actual work itself.

that said, my photo professor really likes my "anti-conceptual" stances, as a concept. *shrug*


אָרַח

This message is a reply to:
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arachnophilia
Member (Idle past 88 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004


Message 12 of 72 (382273)
02-03-2007 11:35 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by ringo
02-03-2007 11:28 PM


I have socks older than that (none of them has a Fine Arts degree).

some of my photo equipment is older than that. and i'm not!


אָרַח

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RickJB
Member (Idle past 3101 days)
Posts: 917
From: London, UK
Joined: 04-14-2006


Message 13 of 72 (382284)
02-04-2007 3:04 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Dubious Drewski
02-03-2007 7:13 PM


Drewsky writes:

I cannot find flaws in my thinking.

That's your first flaw.

"The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing." - Socrates


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Dubious Drewski, posted 02-03-2007 7:13 PM Dubious Drewski has responded

Replies to this message:
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Dubious Drewski
Member (Idle past 641 days)
Posts: 73
From: Alberta
Joined: 02-04-2006


Message 14 of 72 (382301)
02-04-2007 7:20 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by RickJB
02-04-2007 3:04 AM


quote:
quote:
I cannot find flaws in my thinking.

That's your first flaw.



Exactly!

Although that statement was referring to only a handful of beliefs, not all of them. So it wasn't too much of a mistake for saying so.

For example, I'm sure none of you can find flaws in the logic of "2 plus 2 equals 4" (Though I know some would disagree just to spite me or something)


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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RickJB
Member (Idle past 3101 days)
Posts: 917
From: London, UK
Joined: 04-14-2006


Message 15 of 72 (382306)
02-04-2007 8:55 AM
Reply to: Message 14 by Dubious Drewski
02-04-2007 7:20 AM


Drewsky writes:

I'm sure none of you can find flaws in the logic...

Ah, but logic is one thing - the accumulated thoughts of a human individual are often quite another!

Anyway back to your question:-

Drewsky writes:

Have any of you been in this position? Can you remember a time when you were so headstrong about your beliefs and how it affected your interaction with the world? Should I worry? What can I expect in the future?

I can relate to your position. I've never been headstrong about my beliefs in the sense of seeking to preach to others. Rather, I plough a furrow in life that suits me and does as little harm to others as possible. I've never been one for grand proclamations!

I believe that the scepticism of one's own beliefs and actions is healthy. However, one must strike a useful balance between acting postively toward a given goal and keeping its limitations in mind, otherwise one is left impotently coasting through life without the will to commit to any course of action. It's not always easy, especially for twenty-somethings like yourself who have yet to find their role in life!

This kind of tension is many ways central to the modern, globalized human experience. Worrying about this won't make it disappear! Politics (recent environmental concerns, for example) provide a case in point - one is constantly forced to strike a balance between idealistic altrusim and the self-preservation of realpolitik.

Edited by RickJB, : No reason given.

Edited by RickJB, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
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