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Belle.

Human Nature

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Belle.

Yes, a marvellously vague topic....I know.

Just noticed we often invoke 'human nature' to explain our Pov, without it necessarily referring to the same things.

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Human nature is the concept that there are a set of logical characteristics, including ways of thinking, feeling and acting, that all 'normal' human beings have in common.

Brief history of the concept

In pre-modern and non-scientific understandings of nature, human nature is understood with reference to final and formal causes. Such understandings imply the existence of a divine interest in human nature, and/or the existence of an ideal, "idea," or "form" of a human which exists independently of individual humans.

According to the accepted modern scientific understanding, human nature is the range of human behavior that is believed to be normal and/or invariant over long periods of time and across very different cultural contexts.

The existence of an invariable human nature is a subject of much historical debate, particularly in modern times. Most famously, Darwin gave a widely accepted scientific argument that humans and other animal species have no truly fixed nature. Before him, the malleability of man had been asserted by Jean Jacques Rousseau.[2]

Since the mid-19th century, the concept of human nature has been called into question by thinkers such as Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, Sartre, a number of structuralists and postmodernists. The concept has also been challenged by views such as behaviorism, determinism, and the chemical model within modern psychiatry and psychology, which have tended to emphasize the idea that human beings might conceivably be explained as "matter in motion" in a way that is similar to the rest of nature. Recently the biologist E. O. Wilson formulated a scientific definition (see Sociobiology). [3]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_nature

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I'm a more "matter in motion" believer myself. What about you?

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eight bits

I don't know, Belle. Take a part of the human apparatus, like the visual system, the eye and what it connects to.

We have really fine mater-in-motion descriptions of what's going on in the eye, how signals get transmitted by connected nerves, and which chunk of brain does what with the visual input.

But then, you are fooling around one day, and you stick your left arm out in front of you, flip your hand up at the wrist, palm facing away from you, fingers comfortably upright and spread apart. Do the same thing with your right hand. Now, looking at your outstretched left hand, move your right arm so that that your right hand comes bewteen your eyes and your left hand. Look at your left hand through your spread right fingers.

If you're like most people, your left hand looks smaller. Move your right hand away, and it's back to the original size. Overlap again, and it's smaller again. It's not a big effect. How much smaller depends on where your right hand is: closer to your eyes, bigger difference, close to the left hand, less effect. Hands touching, no effect at all.

For me, it seems more pronounced with one eye closed than with both eyes. One eye also avoids a somewhat unsettling impression of "disconnection" in the left hand's fingers.

Hmm. I have absolutely no doubt that that has a 'matter in motion' explanation. But not an interesting one. Even to point out that there is something to be explained, I need higher order concepts.

If I can't wave my hands in front of my face without skating along the outer edge of matter-in-motion's usefulness, what chance is there that I can explain why Eve chose the tree she did?

I can't even ask the question properly.

Edited by eight bits

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Jonny Wonny

Excellenty topic B.

I think I soaked some of it in,

but let me do this *"imitates the sound of a plane flying over my head with a hand motion"* LOLs.

So I don't know if the next thing I'm about to say is relevant, but you know what really annoys me,

how modern science uses apes as the initial reference to human anatomy, instead of using the more logical reference and actually using HUMANS as the reference to human anatomy, am I wrong?

The concept of a savannah ape being the ancestor of humans, and there being a missing link there, is ridiculous (to me anyway), cause the difference between great apes and humans is too different, so there'd have to be multiple missing links to bridge such extreme diversity between to two animals. Hm... I wonder why there's never been a missing link found? Could it be that there isn't one? At least.... not on planet earth anyway?

Wow! Talk about “leftwing” Jonnny Wonny :)

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Belle.
I don't know, Belle. Take a part of the human apparatus, like the visual system, the eye and what it connects to.

We have really fine mater-in-motion descriptions of what's going on in the eye, how signals get transmitted by connected nerves, and which chunk of brain does what with the visual input.

But then, you are fooling around one day, and you stick your left arm out in front of you, flip your hand up at the wrist, palm facing away from you, fingers comfortably upright and spread apart. Do the same thing with your right hand. Now, looking at your outstretched left hand, move your right arm so that that your right hand comes bewteen your eyes and your left hand. Look at your left hand through your spread right fingers.

If you're like most people, your left hand looks smaller. Move your right hand away, and it's back to the original size. Overlap again, and it's smaller again. It's not a big effect. How much smaller depends on where your right hand is: closer to your eyes, bigger difference, close to the left hand, less effect. Hands touching, no effect at all.

For me, it seems more pronounced with one eye closed than with both eyes. One eye also avoids a somewhat unsettling impression of "disconnection" in the left hand's fingers.

Hmm. I have absolutely no doubt that that has a 'matter in motion' explanation. But not an interesting one. Even to point out that there is something to be explained, I need higher order concepts.

If I can't wave my hands in front of my face without skating along the outer edge of matter-in-motion's usefulness, what chance is there that I can explain why Eve chose the tree she did?

I can't even ask the question properly.

Yes, that's true, the interest factor in that way if you want it to describe an experience is very low lol.

To me, the 'matter in motion' explanations serve as an underpinning for the higher order concepts in human nature. Like what type of matter, in what configuration? Usually affected how and by what? = human nature. If we aren't matter in motion, what would we be?

Here is an interesting link I found about Matter in Motion:

http://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/...m/ch02-s03.html

I tend to think that explanations of what happens IE Eve, are essentially macro 'matter in motion' explanations. <although maybe I'm changing the way matter in motion is used in the wiki-page.

Off-topicing; as you know I like that story, it's become my favourite Bible piece lol, and is it not in a ton of threads at the moment? I was even thinking of basing a fiction piece on it. B) Why not give it an atheist determinist spin? It's reminded me of a thread I did a while ago:

http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum...=127729&hl=

Edited by Belle.

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lordstanley

Wow, wild and crazy,,,,, :devil:

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Belle.
Excellenty topic B.

I think I soaked some of it in,

but let me do this *"imitates the sound of a plane flying over my head with a hand motion"* LOLs.

I start a lot of threads where I get that feeling lol.

So I don't know if the next thing I'm about to say is relevant, but you know what really annoys me,

how modern science uses apes as the initial reference to human anatomy, instead of using the more logical reference and actually using HUMANS as the reference to human anatomy, am I wrong?

The concept of a savannah ape being the ancestor of humans, and there being a missing link there, is ridiculous (to me anyway), cause the difference between great apes and humans is too different, so there'd have to be multiple missing links to bridge such extreme diversity between to two animals. Hm... I wonder why there's never been a missing link found? Could it be that there isn't one? At least.... not on planet earth anyway?

Wow! Talk about “leftwing” Jonnny Wonny :)

Ha ha I get what you are saying and you do bring up a good point of "How do we know what we know about the past" which seems an easy thing, but in reality is very complex. Sometimes through popular press it appears that scientists just picked an idea and ran with it, looking for evidence. But in all honesty – I believe they did start with human anatomy < viewing the similarities between us, other animals and fossils. A kind of what can today tell us about the past? The picture becomes more complete as we investigate more. What morphological similarities, genetic evidence et cetera that we use today to confirm the closeness of relatives, people around the globe - how can we extrapolate back to find out what happened in the past? TRANSITIONAL FOSSILS!!!! < there are a ton of threads on that if you back-search the spirit vs skep board. It's a bit of a contentious issue down there lol.

And look it is all contingent on the amount of evidence that we at the time, so even though the story of our past always changes slightly, it just appears to be the best explanation to fit the data that we have at the moment. I, so I won't be looking to the stars just yet lol. must admit I would like to see a ‘transitional fossils found in space thread’. :lol:

But anyways, dragging it back to human nature. A lot of what we do find out about the past, in an evolutionary sense, does give us an explanation to some facets of human nature and why we are the way we are.

Edited by Belle.

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Belle.
Wow, wild and crazy,,,,, :devil:

:lol::lol:

Edited by Belle.

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S2F
According to the accepted modern scientific understanding, human nature is the range of human behavior that is believed to be normal and/or invariant over long periods of time and across very different cultural contexts.

This seems to me to be the best definition, at least according to how I use the term.

But you are right that it is a vague concept, simply because of its nature. People in different areas of the world with different upbringing etc, will usually react the same way to certain scenarios. It won't happen ALL the time, but often enough that there seems to be some commonality between people that may know nothing about each other. However if you further define human nature it runs dangerously close to excluding certain people, thereby becoming not human nature but mostly human nature. Meaning that the new definition may only apply to certain groups and not everyone, it can no longer be labeled human nature.

I hope this doesn't confuse anyone, it almost confused me hehe. And I hope it is relevant to the topic. As usual JMO. :tu:

Edited by Slave2Fate

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Belle.
It won't happen ALL the time, but often enough that there seems to be some commonality between people that may know nothing about each other.

Yes, I'd agree with that. Enough commonalities. :tu:

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War Eagle

Read an article somewhere, Human Nature has almost become an oxymoron.

Think they meant that, modern man had become so distant from himself/nature(?)

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