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Thread: Transhumanism (h+)

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    Default Transhumanism (h+)

    Recently I have had a brief conversation with a girl about this topic.

    Although I do not know her well enough for making an accurate statement, I think she's a LII-Ne. Clearly intuitive, moderately introverted (very shy but gets quite expressive and social when comfortable), clear signs of Se-PoLR like her inability to face people who are taking advantage of her, certain idealism, etc. She has studied Theoretical Physics, with excellent grades. And no offense, but I have troubles conceiving the alternative Se-PoLR EIIs in such field.

    I was a bit surprised becase she apparently opposes to it. Her opposition wasn't in a moral/ideology fashion like it's evil or bad for humanity, but she just prefers to leave natural things in a natural way because that's the natural thing to do.

    That was a bit unexpected from my part. I always thought alpha NTs would be delighted by this idea (strong Ne connotations). In general I think most NTs probably are, statistically, pro-transhumanism (or at least not loudly against it) although ILIs could be the exception. Even if rationally anyone can be concerned about the potential dangers of its widespread, the concept should be attractive for them.

    Maybe she's not a LII and I have mistyped her. Maybe she is and there is not correlation opinion-type in this case. Maybe the correlation does not work as I thought. Or maybe she's just an exception to a potential trend.

    So I would like to know your opinions for observing if this correlation effectively exists or not. In my particular case, I'm pro-h+. I see the idea of improving this obsolete, brittle and limiting organic machine as very stimulating, even if there are certain dangers to consider.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    That line of thinking is surprisingly common—I've been calling it the 'Appeal to Nature Mystique'. The notion of "what's natural" is little more than a kind of silly religious superstition IMO.
    Yes, I agree with that. I've come to the conclusion that the dichotomous view of natural/unnatural is arbitrary and might as well be treated as nonexistant. I believe that everything people do is – and always will be – part of nature. To act "against" nature would be a thing only a god is capable of.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    That line of thinking is surprisingly common—I've been calling it the 'Appeal to Nature Mystique'. The notion of "what's natural" is little more than a kind of silly religious superstition IMO.
    Agree. Not necessarily superstitious, but in certain way, a reification of Nature (from a representative concept to a sort of real entity).

    Lynn Margulis developed the endosymbiosis theory, which has been quite a success. But in her later days she became anti-darwinian using arguments which are clearly pseudoscientific. In her eyes, the survival of the fittest was a sort of evil capitalist ideology, and Nature worked necessarily by collaboration...

    The fact is that the fittest could be an ant colony or an isolated predator, depending on the particular conditions. The underlying rule applies to both cases and is amoral (morality is a human concept). It works or it doesn't. Period.

    FWIW, I'd a transhumanist-related argument in the recent immortality thread w/ Esaman (who self-types LII); he was using a similar line of argument as the one you described.
    Interesting. So maybe this could be more common in LIIs than I previously thought.

    I'm ambivalent to arguing for/against the ethics of 'transhumanism'. The proliferation of technological means to modify/enhance the human condition is inevitable.
    Very Te. And I definitely agree with your conclusion.

    Still, I guess this concept could provoke an emotional response in people, despite the strict rationale which could justify supporting it or not (and not neccesarily in the same line). Such response could point if the correlation I was looking for does exist or not, as attraction/repulsion could be influenced by valued/subdued functions more directly than the final conclusion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pa3s View Post
    I believe that everything people do is – and always will be – part of nature
    A product of nature acting in an unnatural way is pretty much a contradictio in terminis (therefore an absurd idea, imo).

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    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    That line of thinking is surprisingly common—I've been calling it the 'Appeal to Nature Mystique'. The notion of "what's natural" is little more than a kind of silly religious superstition IMO.

    FWIW, I'd a transhumanist-related argument in the recent immortality thread w/ Esaman (who self-types LII); he was using a similar line of argument as the one you described.



    I'm ambivalent to arguing for/against the ethics of 'transhumanism'. The proliferation of technological means to modify/enhance the human condition is inevitable.
    Your reading comprehension ability is why I could not have been bothered to continue that conversation. I specifically explained how my reasons have nothing to do with naturalism.

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    um... so once i went to a transhumanist meet-up to try to make friends but it was awkward and many people seemed very touchy and intellectually demeaning towards each other. i think they were actually nice people but I didn't like this idea that you had to "prove your intelligence" for somebody to take you seriously or not just talk right over you. i think i felt its effects particularly as a woman, and an sf one at that.

    the group was led by a E1 EII. there were some alpha nts, some sts, a really sweet IEE hippie woman that everybody was really mean to (she was very incoherent, like a mix of disintegrated seven plus 'brain fried on drugs'), and some guy who was looked like he hadn't been able to bathe for a while who was v. aggressive and talking in incoherent ways about power and uh... human crocodile hybrids and stuff.

    but anyway, the EII *was* very interested in ethics of transhumanism, but mostly things didn't stay on topic.
    Last edited by lemontrees; 09-04-2014 at 06:51 PM.

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    @lemontrees, was more or less everybody supporting such idea (h+) or there was a noticeable correlation between groups and the position? Which one is yours, by the way (and your type)?

    I agree that looking down "less informed" people is not the best way of proceeding, but I think it just happened like in any potential alternative fringe (or simply passionate) group. Those who are considered "outsiders" or "not worthy enough" are not welcomed, which is an incoherent behavior if you plan to spread such idea for the betterment of mankind (from that POV).
    Last edited by MensSuperMateriam; 09-04-2014 at 07:31 PM.

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    PS sorry for the tangent.

    My type is SEI-Fe, I feel that I don't know enough about the world to imagine what the future will look like. I don't think that artificial enhancements is necessarily a bad thing, but that we should try to go about it meaningfully (?) I have no idea what that would look like.

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    I almost finished writing a novel on trans-humanism when I was a aspiring writer, but I got bored of the idea.

    Also I avoided the transhuman community like the plague. #notcoolenough #noswag

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    On just a visceral level I don't like transhumanism and I imagine that's probably the case with a lot of ILIs, though I can't really say that with any certainty at all. Peter Thiel, an ILI and rather large transhumanist proponent, is one obvious exception.

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    I do believe in a premise of nature, where what is natural allows someone to thrive; things that are unnatural would be those things that degrade a life-form's ability to thrive. I'm only saying this because I could see transhumanism as unnatural or natural depending on whether it allows a person to thrive or destroy itself. I guess that makes me neither a pro, nor an anti transhumanist.

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    a more socially acceptable-ish alternative is to let parents choose which of their own eggs + sperm combine; many parents may opt for smarter / stronger / more creative kids

    you can lawyer it out that you're not really modifying nature, just bending it a little
    It was in the reign of George III that the aforesaid personages lived and quarrelled; good or bad, handsome or ugly, rich or poor, they are all equal now.

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    I feel as though nature is a better architect than we are. Even though it moves slow, it moves much more stable and precise as nature has a far more intimate connection with it's masterpiece than we probably ever will. . The thing is though, we can't sit back and really do nothing, we'd also die off eventually(we are going to die off eventually anyways regardless of what we do) and be replaced by something else in the food chain. So agriculture was born, society rose up as a need to keep us all alive, keep us all fed etc. Many more changes will happen in the future, such as transhumanism. Now here's the problem. We aren't near as smart as we think we are. Scientific dogma runs high, it's ironically more dogmatic than religion in some ways. We assume that we know the answers to things, when really all we've done is observe an aspect of something which presents itself as that solution. Take something like evolution; before the last 5-10 years, scientists would have called you completely insane to suggest anything other as natural selection as being a protocol of adaptation. They will probably still call you crazy. New research has shown though that there are some invalid aspects to it, as it's being shown that epigenetic tags play a large role in what we give to our offspring. It'll probably require 50 years of proof before that would even be accepted. That's the problem with humans though, we always assume we know things.. we go forward on those assumptions.. and then we watch the unintended consequences unfold. When it comes to transhumanism , we can easily cause our own extinction or remove everything about us that makes us human... or something in those lines.... and not even realize that those consequences were primed to unfold because we didn't see all the aspects of it before hand. So while I think as a society we need to at times move forward, I feel like we also need to move backwards at times as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Contra View Post
    On just a visceral level I don't like transhumanism and I imagine that's probably the case with a lot of ILIs, though I can't really say that with any certainty at all. Peter Thiel, an ILI and rather large transhumanist proponent, is one obvious exception.
    I mentioned ILIs could be the exception (not sure) to the "NTs mainly like the concept", because the ILI mind could conceive a zillion ways for transhumanism ending in a very bad way, and could focus on this instead of the potential advantages. I guess Ni-ILIs could be more prone to reject it than Te-ILIs.

    To my mind comes Ted Kaczynski, although I've also seen LII typing for thim.
    Last edited by MensSuperMateriam; 09-06-2014 at 02:54 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snowball View Post
    I do believe in a premise of nature, where what is natural allows someone to thrive; things that are unnatural would be those things that degrade a life-form's ability to thrive. I'm only saying this because I could see transhumanism as unnatural or natural depending on whether it allows a person to thrive or destroy itself. I guess that makes me neither a pro, nor an anti transhumanist.
    Which one is your type, if I may ask? Just for statistical data.

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    Science fiction that explores transhumanism is my favorite genre and I spent plenty of time thinking about related topics. I do think it very NeTi subject of interest.
    That interest does not or at least should not imply particular conclusion on political decision of endorsing or apposing transhumanism. My benefit to risk evaluation calls for most conservative approach.
    @MensSuperMateriam, I would prefer if you where mistaken in the typing mentioned or representation done in the OP, but hey, there are religious and mystics LIIs..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Esaman View Post
    @MensSuperMateriam, I would prefer if you where mistaken in the typing mentioned or representation done in the OP, but hey, there are religious and mystics LIIs..
    She is a believer indeed, but in a peculiar fashion. Although I have not had a proper debate with her about beliefs, I've tested her ideas a bit and it seems she sort of does it because it satifies certain psychological needs, giving her balance, more than as a strong and conscious decision. She didn't disagree with the few arguments I shared, and I felt I could really convince her given the opportunity.

    But she seemed a bit fragile (like the Se PoLR aspects I mentioned) and as in general I had the impression she's a good person, I chose not to push too much. I myself was a believer in my childhood before becoming atheist, and I understand why some people need it, even if I see it as wrong (among other things). In a debate I could become tactless and I judged it uneccessary this time.

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    As far as I'm concerned, human self-modification is guaranteed happen to at least a subset of our species. All you need is a cult to begin genetically re-engineering themselves or their children towards the creation of some ideologically perfect human form. Even a wacky cult of three people can later apply cloning to breed legions of Novo Sapiens.

    Giving even maximum credit to the government's abilities to crackdown on these sorts of activities, how long can they enforce the status quo? 25 years? 10,000?

    It's a very real prospect that mankind may diverge into separate breeds through artificial selection in the same way as dogs. Speciation on the basis of vast genetic differences could occur -- within even a single generation -- to render interbreeding between distinct sets of humans an impossibility.

    And that's not even touching on the Homo Machinus folks...
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    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post
    Which one is your type, if I may ask? Just for statistical data.
    Probably ILI, Ni subtype, without going into specifics that probably only I care about.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post

    I was a bit surprised becase she apparently opposes to it. Her opposition wasn't in a moral/ideology fashion like it's evil or bad for humanity, but she just prefers to leave natural things in a natural way because that's the natural thing to do.

    That was a bit unexpected from my part. I always thought alpha NTs would be delighted by this idea (strong Ne connotations). In general I think most NTs probably are, statistically, pro-transhumanism (or at least not loudly against it) although ILIs could be the exception. Even if rationally anyone can be concerned about the potential dangers of its widespread, the concept should be attractive for them.

    Maybe she's not a LII and I have mistyped her. Maybe she is and there is not correlation opinion-type in this case. Maybe the correlation does not work as I thought. Or maybe she's just an exception to a potential trend.

    So I would like to know your opinions for observing if this correlation effectively exists or not. In my particular case, I'm pro-h+. I see the idea of improving this obsolete, brittle and limiting organic machine as very stimulating, even if there are certain dangers to consider.
    Well, you should remember that all Ne users do also have Si, which is often cast across the pond in the MBTI discourse as the "conservative" function. That's the struggle Ne/Si users face: the push and pull between new possibilities and the way things have been done in the past. Just like Ni/Se users face the push and pull between the deeply personal vision and what can actually be made manifest in reality.

    As for me, I have to pull an Alpha NT here and go "What is your definition of transhumanism?" I think few would hesitate to support prosthetic or even cybernetic limbs for amputees, but a world of designer babies where everyone is crafted to be Stepford Wives perfect might raise some dissenting voices...I know I'm pulling a Godwin's law, but Hit-ler was a transhumanist by some standards. He wanted to use eugenics to create a race of superhumans, no?

    Tampering with the genetic code or transplanting the human mind into a electronic vehicle is not something I consider doing lightly. Man is infected with a sort of hubris. He thinks that he can easily outsmart nature, but nature's systems of checks and balances often throw his "progress" right back in his face (The pill allowed for free love, then the AIDS crisis, man conquered the space vacuum, then Apollo 13, cities which run on oil are utopias which provide refuge from nature...which are quickly running out of resources and are destroying the ozone which keeps us all alive...and on and on and on. I agree with Agent Smith, human beings are a disease. As Joe Rogan astutely pointed out, if you look at human colonies from an airplane, they look like bacterial infections. The superorganism we call the earth should have an inclination to destroy a species which has outstripped its natural predators and is grossly overpopulating). So yeah, basically, I'm not sure that I would trust a handful of scientists to be able to create a better machine than the one nature has been tinkering with for millions of years. If you somehow managed to transplant my brainwaves or whatever into a computer, I know one repercussion is that I'd never be able to go near magnets again, for fear of them accidentally wiping me out. That's not to say I would begrudge them for trying. Fuck nature, she's a bitch. Hell yes we should at least make a sporting go of trying to subjugate her.

    From my viewpoint, I think the current global hegemony will collapse. (Even if it's a "soft" collapse like what happened to the British Empire.) Civilizations seem to have an apoptosis just like germs and men. Not even Rome lived forever. After that, I'm not sure where will be technologically, but with fundamental Islam conquering the globe, and with ego effacing mandated by the still traditionally Confucian influenced emerging superpower China, it may well be another Dark Ages. To use some of Nassim Nicholas Taleb's terms, I think the TV, the automobile, and the A/C are robust enough to stick around, but maybe not things so ornate and fragile as the smartphone and the personal laptop. To be honest, I'm hedging my bets that we will destroy the planet from either overpopulation, atmosphere destruction or nuclear fallout before we get android bodies or escape to the stars...but this is all just speculation, of course.

    In the same breath as all these doubts, though , you'll hardly meet a more dyed-in-the-wool lover of the free market then me. So yeah, if the people want transhuman mods, whatever they may be, I say let 'em have it. And if the Singularity comes in my lifetime, and it's between that and dying, I'll choose the computer download in a heartbeat. And I also write this in the middle of a weightlifting cycle on quote unquote designer steroids, partially because I felt I got dealt a shit genetic hand as an ectomorph with wrists so thin I can wrap my middle finger and my thumb around them...so, in some sense, since I'm exploiting pharmaceutical chemistry and all, you might call me a "transhuman" already...

    Anyways, those are my thoughts on the affair.

    POSTSCRIPT: Why are ILIs the exception? That's out of left field...wouldn't LIEs be outliers too, then, with only slightly altered function order? And this totally sets aside the quagmire you've gotten us in by suggesting not even functional layouts, mind, but Keirsey's clubs as determining ideological leanings...I mean, I'm totally on board with the Celebritytypes' reasoning of Ben Stein, an anti-evolution advocate, as being an INTP/LII, based on the way in which he creates arguments...but I digress...

    For your reading pleasure: http://www.celebritytypes.com/blog/2...stein-is-intp/
    Last edited by Whoobie77; 09-12-2014 at 02:53 AM.

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    If you walk far enough east, you end up in the west. With all things, one should consider the ramifications of our actions down the road. If it looks like there's only benefits to be had, that means there are unforeseen negatives that people aren't prepared for.
    I would say that ethically you are still supposed to act as if you have unilateral responsibility; but simultaneously you have to be able to see the other as a fully autonomous, free, aware person.

    Medicalizing social problems has the additional benefit of rendering society not responsible for those social ills. If it’s a disease, it’s nobody’s fault. Yay empiricism.

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    @Whoobie77

    Offtopic, but:

    I would more think that humans are a meta-organism with disease processes occurring than being an innately pathogenic meta-organism. One positive outcome of our existence as an entropy pump is that thinkers are given the liberty to reason on a cosmic scale.

    I see a general pattern of self-awareness awakening and spreading from a local level. Just as biological individual organisms became sentient, I think metaorganisms will become sentient up until Process God has a developed sentience, if it has not already arrived at that point. Of course this is a mere potential argument, and one I have no beliefs about whether to prefer a causal hypothesis in which consciousness and life are merely coincidences.

    scribbles in the dark

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    Quote Originally Posted by Holon View Post
    @Whoobie77

    Offtopic, but:

    I would more think that humans are a meta-organism with disease processes occurring than being an innately pathogenic meta-organism. One positive outcome of our existence as an entropy pump is that thinkers are given the liberty to reason on a cosmic scale.

    I think metaorganisms will become sentient up until Process God has a developed sentience, if it has not already arrived at that point. Of course this is a mere potential argument, and one I have no beliefs about whether to prefer a causal hypothesis in which consciousness and life are merely coincidences.
    For some reason, I read that as "Offsides, but". I don't even like football, but, 'tis the season, I suppose...

    In any case, I wasn't saying that the human race is a septic infection which needs to be sterilized, just that it is straining the planet/ecosystem in a way that resembles how bacterial rot might swarm a lower organism. I doubt if E. coli had self awareness, it would think of itself as malicious. It's just trying to live, same as anything else. I'm not trying to pass a moral judgement, I'm just trying to sculpt the phrases which best help others understand what my mind is synthesizing from the inputs I'm receiving.

    Also, I think superorganisms do exist already. Some of the banners they fly under is that of a nation or a corporation (in my mind)

    Do you read Deleuze? Because it sounds like you do. Man, my philosophy professor told me about this interesting stuff about quantum mechanics and Apollo and Dionysus that he got out of Deleuze. I found a copy of Capitalism and Schizophrenia and after about 5 minutes I wanted to throw the book at the wall. Maybe I'm just not seeing something, I'll just read my Wittgenstein in the corner, man, thanks. (Apologies if you don't read Deleuze and I sound like a stark mad raving hobo.)

    also, btw Holon, the longer I've know you the more difficult it has become to decipher what the hell you're saying. Is it because you type Ni now and you're trying to live up to that role? Or perhaps the post-structuralists have gotten to you? In any case, come back from that dark wood man, There's merit to be had in speaking like a human being and not a fucking space alien lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    Well, you should remember that all Ne users do also have Si, which is often cast across the pond in the MBTI discourse as the "conservative" function. That's the struggle Ne/Si users face: the push and pull between new possibilities and the way things have been done in the past. Just like Ni/Se users face the push and pull between the deeply personal vision and what can actually be made manifest in reality.
    Interesting remark. From such POV, we could suspect that the more proactive LII versions (LII-Ne; or maybe C/D LII) would have an higher probability of being pro-h+, whereas the opposite would be true for harmonizing variants (enhaced Si or Ni) .

    ...I know I'm pulling a Godwin's law, but Hit-ler was a transhumanist by some standards. He wanted to use eugenics to create a race of superhumans, no?
    Which itself is not a bad idea, imo. The problem was that technically he did not want just augmented humans in abstract, but superhumans with a very specific purpose in mind.

    I mean if you want to improve yourself by engineering or genetics, that's your business, and I think you should be free to do it. But if you want certain characteristics for dominating others, then it's also people's business. Of course it could be argued that everything affects sooner or later everybody, but unless we support dictatorships, that's a risk we must accept. The same could be said about drugs, for example. I personally have never consumed (except caffeine, if you want to include it) but I think people should be free to have the choice.

    By the way, morality is an inherently subjective topic, so...

    Tampering with the genetic code or transplanting the human mind into a electronic vehicle is not something I consider doing lightly. Man is infected with a sort of hubris. He thinks that he can easily outsmart nature, but nature's systems of checks and balances often throw his "progress" right back in his face (The pill allowed for free love, then the AIDS crisis, man conquered the space vacuum, then Apollo 13, cities which run on oil are utopias which provide refuge from nature...which are quickly running out of resources and are destroying the ozone which keeps us all alive...and on and on and on. I agree with Agent Smith, human beings are a disease. As Joe Rogan astutely pointed out, if you look at human colonies from an airplane, they look like bacterial infections. The superorganism we call the earth should have an inclination to destroy a species which has outstripped its natural predators and is grossly overpopulating). So yeah, basically, I'm not sure that I would trust a handful of scientists to be able to create a better machine than the one nature has been tinkering with for millions of years. If you somehow managed to transplant my brainwaves or whatever into a computer, I know one repercussion is that I'd never be able to go near magnets again, for fear of them accidentally wiping me out. That's not to say I would begrudge them for trying. Fuck nature, she's a bitch. Hell yes we should at least make a sporting go of trying to subjugate her.
    Uhm. Your reasoning seemed very LIIish (I'm not implying you're). You're dealing with Nature in a sort of Gaia fashion, that is, almost as a self-aware entity (at least in a superficial level), or self-behaving entity. Like if it has an internally stablished purpose and "knows" how to do for achieving it. Not that this is a bad thing, just that it seems to be a common way many LIIs see Nature. Gulenko mentioned ecosystems as a very INTj idea, and I also think Lynn Margulis was LII (see my answer to mfckr). Although probably it was the way you've expressed it, more that what you're actually thinking.

    I disagree with such way of interpreting the issue, and particularly the concept of life. I do not like to go excessively offtopic in my own threads, so I'm not going to argue against it, the same way I've not argued against other opinions which has been expressed; my goal is collecting data for stablishing a potential correlation. Although participants are welcome to discuss as much as they want of course.

    My answer to this would require a very long argument combining Physics, Chemistry & Biology. I will only point that I think you're wrong (or could be wrong, in case I'm misinterpreting you) basically because life is not equilibrium as people usually think, but the opposite. All life is, in certain way, a disease, as it can only prosper by "destruction". So what is happening with humans was somehow inevitable (also quoting Agent Smith). Well, technically more than "destruction", life is a catalyst of it.

    If you're particularly intersted in discussing this topic, I would participate in a proper thread.

    There are ways of achieving electromagnetic shielding. Superconductors are in fact completely opaque to magnetic fields.

    From my viewpoint, I think the current global hegemony will collapse. (Even if it's a "soft" collapse like what happened to the British Empire.) Civilizations seem to have an apoptosis just like germs and men. Not even Rome lived forever. After that, I'm not sure where will be technologically, but with fundamental Islam conquering the globe, and with ego effacing mandated by the still traditionally Confucian influenced emerging superpower China, it may well be another Dark Ages. To use some of Nassim Nicholas Taleb's terms, I think the TV, the automobile, and the A/C are robust enough to stick around, but maybe not things so ornate and fragile as the smartphone and the personal laptop. To be honest, I'm hedging my bets that we will destroy the planet from either overpopulation, atmosphere destruction or nuclear fallout before we get android bodies or escape to the stars...but this is all just speculation, of course.
    That's the reason we should colonize Mars asap. By the way, Venus is closer and has a size almost identical to Earth (no low gravity problem), something many people do not know . It's just easier to warm up when the environment is cold, than to cool down when it's too hot. But there are potential solutions.

    In the same breath as all these doubts, though , you'll hardly meet a more dyed-in-the-wool lover of the free market then me. So yeah, if the people want transhuman mods, whatever they may be, I say let 'em have it. And if the Singularity comes in my lifetime, and it's between that and dying, I'll choose the computer download in a heartbeat. And I also write this in the middle of a weightlifting cycle on quote unquote designer steroids, partially because I felt I got dealt a shit genetic hand as an ectomorph with wrists so thin I can wrap my middle finger and my thumb around them...so, in some sense, since I'm exploiting pharmaceutical chemistry and all, you might call me a "transhuman" already...
    it seems we agree, then.

    POSTSCRIPT: Why are ILIs the exception? That's out of left field...wouldn't LIEs be outliers too, then, with only slightly altered function order? And this totally sets aside the quagmire you've gotten us in by suggesting not even functional layouts, mind, but Keirsey's clubs as determining ideological leanings...I mean, I'm totally on board with the Celebritytypes' reasoning of Ben Stein, an anti-evolution advocate, as being an INTP/LII, based on the way in which he creates arguments...but I digress...

    For your reading pleasure: http://www.celebritytypes.com/blog/2...stein-is-intp/
    Nono. Maybe I've not expressed myself properly.

    First to all, I was not considering Keirsey's clubs (does Keirsey fits as jungian typology, by the way?) but Socionics clubs. That is, the collection of strongest functions. And definitely I was not implying that clubs are the single (or even main) source of ideological views. I was not stating it from a true ideological POV, but more in the line of personal goals, which fits in Soc-clubs.

    As we know, members of each club share goals, professional inclinations, hobbies, etc, (at least in a superficial way), because with the same strengths, they tend to focus in the same things and they're (more or less) equally capable .

    About LIE vs ILI, well the question is simple. LIE is more an achiever & pragmatical thinker, so any skill, resource, etc which could provide personal improvement and advantages against competitors, has high potential for being welcomed. ILIs are much more deep thinkers. This, combined with their pessimistic nature, makes them more inclined to focus in the potential risks of human modifications.
    Last edited by MensSuperMateriam; 09-12-2014 at 11:24 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    As for me, I have to pull an Alpha NT here and go "What is your definition of transhumanism?" I think few would hesitate to support prosthetic or even cybernetic limbs for amputees, but a world of designer babies where everyone is crafted to be Stepford Wives perfect might raise some dissenting voices...I know I'm pulling a Godwin's law, but Hit-ler was a transhumanist by some standards. He wanted to use eugenics to create a race of superhumans, no?
    Posing a normative question about whether humans 'should' do these things or not, is the wrong question. Considering there won't be any 100% effective means to bar everyone from accessing them—the wealthy & powerful will always find a way around the laws, etc. And no one wants that kind of inequity.

    Hi†lerian eugenics is disanalogous as that was little more than a state-imposed breeding/culling program with involuntary participation from the populace. Whereas a 'market eugenics' program would be entirely voluntary with people free to choose whatever, if any, genomic/cybernetic modifications they wanted, and nobody being arbitrarily terminated by fiat.

    Tampering with the genetic code or transplanting the human mind into a electronic vehicle is not something I consider doing lightly. Man is infected with a sort of hubris. He thinks that he can easily outsmart nature, but nature's systems of checks and balances often throw his "progress" right back in his face (The pill allowed for free love, then the AIDS crisis, man conquered the space vacuum, then Apollo 13, cities which run on oil are utopias which provide refuge from nature...which are quickly running out of resources and are destroying the ozone which keeps us all alive...and on and on and on.
    Sure, but the problems humans were facing before said technologies were arguably much bigger/deadlier. E.g., the Industrial Revolution wasn't always pretty, but neither was epidemic disease, mass child mortality, and the sort of listless grinding poverty afflicting most everyone prior to the ~1750s.

    Unintended consequences are real and should be taken seriously. But that shouldn't deter us from attempting to solve immediate problems.

    That's not to say I would begrudge them for trying. Fuck nature, she's a bitch. Hell yes we should at least make a sporting go of trying to subjugate her.
    Agree. The saga of human existence has basically been a Promethean one of overcoming 'nature' and all its hereditary/environmental limitations. No reason that shouldn't continue.

    From my viewpoint, I think the current global hegemony will collapse. (Even if it's a "soft" collapse like what happened to the British Empire.) Civilizations seem to have an apoptosis just like germs and men. Not even Rome lived forever. After that, I'm not sure where will be technologically, but with fundamental Islam conquering the globe, and with ego effacing mandated by the still traditionally Confucian influenced emerging superpower China, it may well be another Dark Ages. To use some of Nassim Nicholas Taleb's terms, I think the TV, the automobile, and the A/C are robust enough to stick around, but maybe not things so ornate and fragile as the smartphone and the personal laptop. To be honest, I'm hedging my bets that we will destroy the planet from either overpopulation, atmosphere destruction or nuclear fallout before we get android bodies or escape to the stars...but this is all just speculation, of course.
    Apocalyptic doomsaying may seem exciting, but is patently unrealistic from my POV. I don't know that there's historically been a single instance of rapid 'total civilizational collapse'—e.g. the fall of the (Western) Roman Empire might appear that way in hindsight, but was actually a process spanning over multiple centuries. And the subsequent 'Dark Ages' weren't so dark, as the livelihoods for many in the region improved substantially; the end of Roman hegemony was more a relief than a tragedy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post
    Uhm. Your reasoning seemed very LIIish (I'm not implying you're). You're dealing with Nature in a sort of Gaia fashion, that is, almost as a self-aware entity (at least in a superficial level), or self-behaving entity. Like if it has an internally stablished purpose and "knows" how to do for achieving it. Not that this is a bad thing, just that it seems to be a common way many LIIs see Nature. Gulenko mentioned ecosystems as a very INTj idea, and I also think Lynn Margulis was LII (see my answer to mfckr). Although probably it was the way you've expressed it, more that what you're actually thinking.

    I disagree with such way of interpreting the issue, and particularly the concept of life. I do not like to go excessively offtopic in my own threads, so I'm not going to argue against it, the same way I've not argued against other opinions which has been expressed; my goal is collecting data for stablishing a potential correlation. Although participants are welcome to discuss as much as they want of course.

    My answer to this would require a very long argument combining Physics, Chemistry & Biology. I will only point that I think you're wrong (or could be wrong, in case I'm misinterpreting you) basically because life is not equilibrium as people usually think, but the opposite. All life is, in certain way, a disease, as it can only prosper by "destruction". So what is happening with humans was somehow inevitable (also quoting Agent Smith). Well, technically more than "destruction", life is a catalyst of it.
    Well just about everybody on the forum has told me I'm an ILE and most non-socionics MBTI tests I take say I'm either ENTP or INTP so...I'm kind of inclined to just accept that I'm NeTi this point.

    Ti is a logical function, and is therefore prone towards analogical processes, such as "A is to B as C is to D". Combine this with a love of disparate juxtapositions (Ne), and you'll have a proclivity towards speaking sometimes with metaphors. Because this analogical process is deeply personal, sometimes it is prone to being faulty. (On the other hand, sometimes it can lead to the same conclusions as Te. We're both capitalists, but probably for different reasons. I assume your reasoning has something to do with efficiency, but me, it has to do with the only economic system which seems to adhere to the starting premise that evolution is a contest and this will direct people's behavior)
    I don't actually think that if a typhoon hits India that it is Mother Earth making a sentient decision to do a cleansing. I'm just saying that human beings often fail to realize the constraints that physical laws have placed on them. In another thread I might have said that men are like Icarus. There are no perfect metaphors, but I do the best I can to help others understand the "visions" or whatever you want to call information that I'm seeing.

    Sorry for the derail, but I don't think we need a whole other thread for me to just say that.





    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post
    Nono. Maybe I've not expressed myself properly.

    First to all, I was not considering Keirsey's clubs (does Keirsey fits as jungian typology, by the way?) but Socionics clubs. That is, the collection of strongest functions. And definitely I was not implying that clubs are the single (or even main) source of ideological views. I was not stating it from a true ideological POV, but more in the line of personal goals, which fits in Soc-clubs.

    As we know, members of each club share goals, professional inclinations, hobbies, etc, (at least in a superficial way), because with the same strengths, they tend to focus in the same things and they're (more or less) equally capable .

    About LIE vs ILI, well the question is simple. LIE is more an achiever & pragmatical thinker, so any skill, resource, etc which could provide personal improvement and advantages against competitors, has high potential for being welcomed. ILIs are much more deep thinkers. This, combined with their pessimistic nature, makes them more inclined to focus in the potential risks of human modifications.
    I said Keirsey because Keirsey doesn't seem to care about functions, which is the problem in my mind with the club groupings in either system. You yourself said it is a "superficial" grouping, so I was just wondering why you were collecting the data in the first place. Yes, the club system has some degree of merit. But I'm just wondering what it is you are trying to prove. Perhaps "NTs should love technology" ? As I've already shown with the Ben Stein thing, it runs counter to the theory to say "X type should be in favor of this or that". You can be an INTJ that is arguing for human cybernetic programming or an INTJ terrorist living out in a wooden shack in the wilderness trying to bring down contemporary civilization (Norbert Wiener and Ted Kaczynski are both INTJ/ILIs in my opinion, for example). What is important is the processes, not beliefs or "goals".

    In any case, your pointing to the Positivist/Negativist dichotomy as reasoning to why an ILI would be more skeptical is a good point.
    Last edited by Whoobie77; 09-22-2014 at 07:59 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    Posing a normative question about whether humans 'should' do these things or not, is the wrong question.
    Do you have any argument why we should not explore normative rules, or are we just not supposed to do it because your word is law?


    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    I don't know that there's historically been a single instance of rapid 'total civilizational collapse'—e.g. the fall of the (Western) Roman Empire might appear that way in hindsight, but was actually a process spanning over multiple centuries..
    Really, you can never think of a civilization falling apart. Not Macedonian Greece after Alexander. Not the Medieval Muslim Caliphates falling to fundamentalism. Not the Mongol bloodline diluting in China. Not the Soviet Union after the perestroika.


    I'm not saying necessarily that the modern equivalent of the Visigoths is going to knock down the gates and burn New York City to the ground. I'm not saying it's going to be instantaneous. It might not even happen in my lifetime. But civilizations do decline in importance, and that's what I'm saying I'm expecting to happen with America.

    When this happens, information is lost in the process. The Library of Alexandria was burned to the ground. Who knows what treasures the barbarians destroyed in Rome. Some of the scientific advancements of the Muslim Caliphates were surely destroyed by following wave of fundamentalism. It happens.
    Last edited by Whoobie77; 09-12-2014 at 10:33 PM.

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    @Whoobie77

    Well, I self type LII now. What I say makes sense to me, but I think often, and especially when I'm writing quickly, an outside reader would need to be fairly literate in my worldview to understand what I'm saying. Where did I lose you?

    scribbles in the dark

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    Quote Originally Posted by Holon View Post
    @Whoobie77

    Well, I self type LII now. What I say makes sense to me, but I think often, and especially when I'm writing quickly, an outside reader would need to be fairly literate in my worldview to understand what I'm saying. Where did I lose you?

    yeah, sometimes I forget to remember that everyone's semiotics or language-game or meaning making or whatever you want to call it is different. the lack of empathy on my part was my bad. a fair point.

    But, since you asked...

    To me, it just seems as your writing has gotten more deliberately esoteric over the course of time. I consider myself at the very least a modestly intelligent person, but I haven't the slightest clue what a "Process God" or "reason on a cosmic scale" means. If we all live in "the cosmos" wouldn't that mean that anything that reasons at all would be reasoning "at the cosmic level", and if so, why not just say, "we are endowed with the ability to apply reason" or something? Isn't reason just impressive enough on its own? Also, (I'm going to be a massive hypocrite for just telling MSM to read metaphorically 2 posts ago but whatever) when you use a sociobiology world like "meta-organism" for its technical application and then turn around and use a chemistry word like "entropy" in a poetic sense, it becomes difficult to tell if I'm supposed to be reading your writing at a literal or metaphoric level.

    it just all seems to kind of being veering dangerously close to that old platitude, "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit".

    when we first met and were shooting the shit about Barthes and Amano and whatever, I had little trouble following you, but maybe it was because I at least somewhat understood your frame of reference...

    in any case, I think you're a pretty solid dude, so don't I hope you don't construe this as a personal attack or anything

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    Well just about everybody on the forum has told me I'm an ILE and most non-socionics MBTI tests I take say I'm either ENTP or INTP so...I'm kind of inclined to just accept that I'm NeTi this point.
    Imo you're a bit dark and pessimistic in a classical ILI fashion. ILEs can be, of course, but I think it seems a natural part of yourself instead something caused by external conditioning. But I'm not sure.

    Ti is a logical function, and is therefore prone towards analogical processes, such as "A is to B as C is to D". Combine this with a love of disparate juxtapositions (Ne), and you'll have a proclivity towards speaking sometimes with metaphors.
    In a broader sense all intuitors have a big inclination for using this resource, although the style is different in each case. Disparate juxtapositions (lol) are usually Ne, that's true.

    Because this analogical process is deeply personal, sometimes it is prone to being faulty. (On the other hand, sometimes it can lead to the same conclusions as Te. We're both capitalists, but probably for different reasons. I assume your reasoning has something to do with efficiency, but me, it has to do with the only economic system which seems to adhere to the starting premise that evolution is a contest and this will direct people's behavior) I don't actually think that if a typhoon hits India that it is Mother Earth making a sentient decision to do a cleansing. I'm just saying that human beings often fail to realize the constraints that physical laws have placed on them. In another thread I might have said that men are like Icarus. There are no perfect metaphors, but I do the best I can to help others understand the "essences" or whatever you want to call Ne information that I'm seeing.

    Sorry for the derail, but I don't think we need a whole other thread for me to just say that.
    Bolded-> I hope so, or you will be really crazy... . Ok to the rest.

    I said Keirsey because Keirsey doesn't seem to care about functions, which is the problem in my mind with the club groupings in either system. You yourself said it is a "superficial" grouping, so I was just wondering why you were collecting the data in the first place. Yes, the club system has some degree of merit. But I'm just wondering what it is you are trying to prove. Perhaps "NTs should love technology" ? As I've already shown with the Ben Stein thing, it runs counter to the theory to say "X type should be in favor of this or that". You can be an INTJ that is arguing for human cybernetic programming or an INTJ terrorist living out in a wooden shack in the wilderness trying to bring down contemporary civilization (Norbert Wiener and Ted Kaczynski are both INTJ/ILIs in my opinion, for example). What is important is the processes, not beliefs or "goals".
    I think maybe you're still not understanding my position. The NT club is not perfect (as any grouping); it cannot (and should not) be considered as determinat when gauging the potential position that its members will manifest. But it's definitely not "weak", nor using it is just an idea that I've just pulled out of my ass (the same idiom you've used several times).

    Clubs are indeed part of Socionics theory, and they're as relevant as alternative classifications like quadras. Just their implications are different. The latter ones classifies types according to valued/devalued function which is connected with intertype relations. Clubs group types according to strong/weak functions, because strength plays a big role in the goals, purposes, pofessional areas, etc, that types are naturally inclined.

    NFs as humanitarians, for example, is not just a superficial label, it has an argumentation supporting it. Of course it does not imply that necessarily all NFs will choose this path in their lives. An NT can focus in people & ethical questions; an NF can be a scientist, etc. But as usual, statistically speaking, it is relevant and works in this way. The same way not all LIIs will have typical LII "ideology", goals, or will agree with each other. But there's always a trend, a pattern.

    Sharing the internal process does not determine the result, but it makes it easier to end in a particular point (or set of points) than in others. Counterexamples does not disprove statistical trends, unless their population size is as large as the opposite.

    I insist that this is also part of the theory. Technically I'm not making a point, as I'm simply using what it's already available.
    Last edited by MensSuperMateriam; 09-13-2014 at 10:28 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    Not the Medieval Muslim Caliphates falling to fundamentalism.
    Friendly correction: the Muslim Caliphates didn't "fall" to fundamentalism:

    The Ummayids (EDIT: or rather, its decedents) were conquered by Spain.

    The Abbasid caliphate was defeated and ravaged by Mongols.

    The Ottoman empire was dismantled by the Allies after WW1, well after the Ottoman state had initiated modernizing reforms in the 19th century based on the French and German models.

    External forces had a bigger hand to play in creating Islam's modern conditions, not least of which was Europe's monopolization of Indian ocean trade, which no longer had to pass through the Mediterranean to reach the West. The Italian city states faced a similar period of stagnation following the decline of Mediterranean trade.

    An internal culprit was the dominance of a single, large, reactionary state over most of the region capable of stamping out threatening innovations; the Ottoman cast-like social contract was too rigid to easily change in the face of entrenched corruption and new political systems, whereas Europe's split into many competing statelets made control by a single entity impossible -- the most powerful and likeliest such entity being the house of Hapsburg in alliance with the Catholic church. China under the Ming, and most of the Qing, dynasty suffered the exact same fate for similar reasons.

    If anything, religious fundamentalism helped guide Europe on its modern path towards pluralism by kicking off the reformation.


    ... but yeah, I agree that civilizations (though the term "civilization" is itself ambiguous; I'll assume you mean major states) can suffer decisive blows.
    Last edited by xerx; 09-14-2014 at 12:08 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xerx View Post
    Friendly correction: the Muslim Caliphates didn't "fall" to fundamentalism:

    The Ummayids (EDIT: or rather, its decedents) were conquered by Spain.

    The Abbasid caliphate was defeated and ravaged by Mongols.

    The Fatimids, who drove out the Mongols following the destruction of Baghdad, were conquered by the rival Ottoman caliphate.

    The Ottoman empire, in turn, was dismantled by the Allies after WW1, well after the Ottoman state had initiated modernizing reforms in the 19th century based on the French and German models.

    External forces had a bigger hand to play in creating Islam's modern conditions, not least of which was Europe's monopolization of Indian ocean trade, which no longer had to pass through the Mediterranean to reach the West. The Italian city states faced a similar period of stagnation following the decline of Mediterranean trade.

    An internal culprit was the dominance of a single, large, reactionary state over most of the region capable of stamping out threatening innovations; the Ottoman cast-like social contract was too rigid to easily change in the face of entrenched corruption and new political systems, whereas Europe's split into many competing statelets made control by a single entity impossible -- the most powerful and likeliest such entity being the house of Hapsburg in alliance with the Catholic church. China under the Ming, and most of the Qing, dynasty suffered the exact same fate for similar reasons.

    If anything, religious fundamentalism helped guide Europe on its modern path towards pluralism by kicking off the reformation.


    ... but yeah, I agree that civilizations (though the term "civilization" is itself ambiguous; I'll assume you mean major states) can suffer decisive blows.
    When I said "medieval Muslim caliphates", I was thinking of the Abbasids, I think. That's why I specified medieval to distinguish them from the Ottomans. If I recall correctly, there was a fundamentalist backlash after a period of scientific achievement and relative political/religious tolerance. It may not have been the end of the Abbasids, but it was the end of tolerance and rationalism, the end of its contributions to human freedom and liberty, which effectively signaled the beginning of decline. But my memory may be failing me, it's not my area of expertise, for certain.

    When I say "civilization", I mean something along the lines of, "Larger than a nation-state, with tendencies towards hegemony/hyperpower". Once again, perhaps not true of the Abbasids, but, it's social science, not chemistry, there's bound to be some ambiguity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    When I said "medieval Muslim caliphates", I was thinking of the Abbasids, I think. That's why I specified medieval to distinguish them from the Ottomans. If I recall correctly, there was a fundamentalist backlash after a period of scientific achievement and relative political/religious tolerance. It may not have been the end of the Abbasids, but it was the end of tolerance and rationalism, the end of its contributions to human freedom and liberty, which effectively signaled the beginning of decline. But my memory may be failing me, it's not my area of expertise, for certain.

    When I say "civilization", I mean something along the lines of, "Larger than a nation-state, with tendencies towards hegemony/hyperpower". Once again, perhaps not true of the Abbasids, but, it's social science, not chemistry, there's bound to be some ambiguity.
    There's a lot of misinformation on the subject out there, so your belief is understandable. Nevertheless, any "continuous" decline from the Abbasids onwards would have cascaded to the later Islamic states inheriting the Caliphal title, like the Ottomans'. What we see is that the Ottoman Empire was one of the most religiously tolerant states in Europe, with vast religious minorities; a notable episode was the sheltering of Jewish refugees fleeing the Spanish inquisitions.

    At its height, it was a technologically advanced and highly organized superpower, and one of the first states to employ gunpowder on the battlefield.

    There were scary periods of fanaticism throughout Muslim history to be sure, esp. following the collapse of the Abassids, notably by figures like Tamerlane, an Islamic Mongol who massacred untold numbers of people, ostensibly out of religious duty, including other Muslims. But even his descendants, who later came to rule India, governed an organized, culturally-rich and contemporaneously modern empire.
    Last edited by xerx; 09-14-2014 at 02:07 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post
    Imo you're a bit dark and pessimistic in a classical ILI fashion. ILEs can be, of course, but I think it seems a natural part of yourself instead something caused by external conditioning. But I'm not sure.
    Well, I keep probably ping-ponging back and forth 'til the end of time, mostly because people are dynamic and don't fit as cleanly as we would like them to into categories. I'm somewhat disillusioned with typology ATM, but I use the terminology, because, well, it's the language of the arena, the operant myth. The same reason I say the Nicene Creed when I go to church, I suppose..,



    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post
    Bolded-> I hope so, or you will be really crazy... . Ok to the rest..
    I mean, would it? Most of the world's population is religious. Attempting to construct meaning as to what's going on with this mess isn't aberrant, it seems pretty typical. Hell, we're on forum dedicated to talking about mystical archetypes coined by a guy who believed in a unified reservoir spirit brain, in a thread talking about what could basically be reskinned Christianity (I mean you've got the whole "fallen nature" of the human physical form and the aspirations towards a transcendence of flying around in the Cloud(s) down...) Glass houses, man.



    Quote Originally Posted by MensSuperMateriam View Post
    I think maybe you're still not understanding my position. The NT club is not perfect (as any grouping); it cannot (and should not) be considered as determinat when gauging the potential position that its members will manifest. But it's definitely not "weak", nor using it is just an idea that I've just pulled out of my ass (the same idiom you've used several times).

    Clubs are indeed part of Socionics theory, and they're as relevant as alternative classifications like quadras. Just their implications are different. The latter ones classifies types according to valued/devalued function which is connected with intertype relations. Clubs group types according to strong/weak functions, because strength plays a big role in the goals, purposes, pofessional areas, etc, that types are naturally inclined.

    NFs as humanitarians, for example, is not just a superficial label, it has an argumentation supporting it. Of course it does not imply that necessarily all NFs will choose this path in their lives. An NT can focus in people & ethical questions; an NF can be a scientist, etc. But as usual, statistically speaking, it is relevant and works in this way. The same way not all LIIs will have typical LII "ideology", goals, or will agree with each other. But there's always a trend, a pattern.

    Sharing the internal process does not determine the result, but it makes it easier to end in a particular point (or set of points) than in others. Counterexamples does not disprove statistical trends, unless their population size is as large as the opposite.

    I insist that this is also part of the theory. Technically I'm not making a point, as I'm simply using what it's already available.
    Yeah, I agree with you that an NF is more likely to be a poet than an NT. Ironically, in fact, my natural inclination to gravitate towards the NT "club" is one of the only things that put my finger on about my own type, if type exists. The whole thing just seemed like a covert determinism screed or something, idk. perhaps I flew off the handle and was being a tad reactionary.
    Last edited by Whoobie77; 09-14-2014 at 09:38 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xerx View Post
    There's a lot of misinformation on the subject out there, so your belief is understandable. Nevertheless, any "continuous" decline from the Abbasids onwards would have cascaded to the later Islamic states inheriting the Caliphal title, like the Ottomans'. What we see is that the Ottoman Empire was one of the most religiously tolerant states in Europe, with vast religious minorities; a notable episode was the sheltering of Jewish refugees fleeing the Spanish inquisitions.

    At its height, it was a technologically advanced and highly organized superpower, and one of the first states to employ gunpowder on the battlefield.

    There were scary periods of fanaticism throughout Muslim history to be sure, esp. following the collapse of the Abassids, notably by figures like Tamerlane, an Islamic Mongol who massacred untold numbers of people, ostensibly out of religious duty, including other Muslims. But even his descendants, who later came to rule India, governed an organized, culturally-rich and contemporaneously modern empire.
    Ok, so, I went and looked up who I was thinking of, and Al-Ghazali was the name. After Rome fell, the West was in the Dark Ages, There was no power in Europe to carry the torch which began with Hellenistic Greece's pluralism. The Muslim world picked up the torch, essentially. But after the Mongols had sacked the Abbasids and the Crusades happened, the torch had effectively been passed. The Mongols were bringing together disparate talents to advance their military conquests, and the Crusades "brought home" the lost information of the Dark Ages, setting the stage for Britain, France, Spain, and like to begin grasping for the throne. Combine this with Al-Ghazali's undermining of pluralistic thought, and you had the beginnings of a diminishing in importance. I think you misrepresent the Ottomans as a superpower; to be a superpower means you are ruling the world. By the time WWI had rolled around, the once proud seat of Constantinople was almost an afterthought in the conflict of Britain, France, Germany and Russia. The Mongols were ruling the world after the Abbasids, and then the power center shifted back to Europe, The Qing is an apt comparison-a brittle country which had long past its heyday. The apex of premodern Chinese civilization was probably sometime in the Song, the apex of premodern Muslim civilization was during the Abbasids. The span of time from the height of the Song to the end of Qing, and the time from the end of Abbasids to the end of the Ottomans, was the decline towards death (irrelevance or dismantlement) not the death itself. Analogous to middle and old age in humans; not without good times, but certainly nothing like what was achieved in one's prime.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    Ok, so, I went and looked up who I was thinking of, and Al-Ghazali was the name. After Rome fell, the West was in the Dark Ages, There was no power in Europe to carry the torch which began with Hellenistic Greece's pluralism. The Muslim world picked up the torch, essentially. But after the Mongols had sacked the Abbasids and the Crusades happened, the torch had effectively been passed. The Mongols were bringing together disparate talents to advance their military conquests, and the Crusades "brought home" the lost information of the Dark Ages, setting the stage for Britain, France, Spain, and like to begin grasping for the throne. Combine this with Al-Ghazali's undermining of pluralistic thought, and you had the beginnings of a diminishing in importance. I think you misrepresent the Ottomans as a superpower; to be a superpower means you are ruling the world. By the time WWI had rolled around, the once proud seat of Constantinople was almost an afterthought in the conflict of Britain, France, Germany and Russia. The Mongols were ruling the world after the Abbasids, and then the power center shifted back to Europe, The Qing is an apt comparison-a brittle country which had long past its heyday. The apex of premodern Chinese civilization was probably sometime in the Song, the apex of premodern Muslim civilization was during the Abbasids. The span of time from the height of the Song to the end of Qing, and the time from the end of Abbasids to the end of the Ottomans, was the decline towards death (irrelevance or dismantlement) not the death itself. Analogous to middle and old age in humans; not without good times, but certainly nothing like what was achieved in one's prime.
    The argument that a philosophy is singularly responsible for Islam's decay is convenient, but silly. Muslim culture didn't suddenly decide to become backwards in the 13th century. It took war and economics to whittle it down.


    The Mongols probably had the biggest hand in destroying the Islamic golden age. Their level of destruction would be classified as genocide by any metric:

    * The Abbasid capital Baghdad, the largest city in Islam ( if not the world** ) was virtually erased on the orders of Hulegu Khan. It's great library was burned to the ground and Mesopotamia's three thousand+ year old irrigation system was completely destroyed. Its population was deported or massacred; the dead numbered between 800,000 to 2,000,000.

    * Cities in Iran and Afghanistan, major population basins and centers of learning, were decimated. You can walk into the Iranian countryside today and visit ghost towns that haven't been repopulated since the Mongol period.

    * Tamerlane, the Mongol ruler of Persia, single-handedly slaughtered like ~5% of the world's population, many Muslims among them.


    Islam's intellectual conservatism was a result, not the cause of the end of their Golden age.


    ** Chang'an being another contender.
    Last edited by xerx; 09-14-2014 at 06:14 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xerx View Post
    The argument that a philosophy is singularly responsible for Islam's decay is convenient, but silly.
    Philosophy never had a hand in the formation or deformation of a state...guess someone should tell Jesus and Marx

    Quote Originally Posted by xerx View Post
    Muslim culture didn't suddenly decide to become backwards in the 13th century. It took war and economics to whittle it down.
    which is exactly what I'm arguing in my view of history. States don't just die, they decline first.


    Quote Originally Posted by xerx View Post
    The Mongols probably had the biggest hand in destroying the Islamic golden age. Their level of destruction would be classified as genocide by any metric:
    I agree that the Mongols were important. My OP on the subject wasn't attempting to be a comprehensive analysis of all of the factors which led to the Muslim Golden Age's end. The Soviet Union didn't fall apart just from the perestroika and glasnost, either. It fell apart because central planning is good for rapid industrialization but not steady growth, corruption of the leaders, etc. I was painting in broad strokes. It was supposed to be a pointing to a larger trend that nothing lasts forever, and all things eventually fall apart. You're missing the forest for the trees, man.

    .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    Philosophy never had a hand in the formation or deformation of a state...guess someone should tell Jesus and Marx
    Well you did mention Al-Ghazali.

    which is exactly what I'm arguing in my view of history. States don't just die, they decline first.

    I agree that the Mongols were important. My OP on the subject wasn't attempting to be a comprehensive analysis of all of the factors which led to the Muslim Golden Age's end.
    No problemo; glad we agree. <(^.^<)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whoobie77 View Post
    yeah, sometimes I forget to remember that everyone's semiotics or language-game or meaning making or whatever you want to call it is different. the lack of empathy on my part was my bad. a fair point.
    A point I didn't even mean to make! It's becoming ever more thematic that I don't explain myself enough and assume people know what I'm talking about. The responsibility rests squarely on my shoulders to cultivate my communication skills.

    To me, it just seems as your writing has gotten more deliberately esoteric over the course of time. I consider myself at the very least a modestly intelligent person, but I haven't the slightest clue what a "Process God" or "reason on a cosmic scale" means. If we all live in "the cosmos" wouldn't that mean that anything that reasons at all would be reasoning "at the cosmic level", and if so, why not just say, "we are endowed with the ability to apply reason" or something? Isn't reason just impressive enough on its own?
    "Process God" is the idea of some metaphysical suggestive will, like the God Whitehead identified, and in contrast to some static Christian God. Sorry, super lazy shorthand.

    To address the meat of that section, if there is some Whiteheadian process will that is equally shaping/being shaped by the processes of the Universe, at least in this little corner, it's starting to wake up to itself. I think it's interesting that there are consistent patterns of things achieving predatory conscious awareness of a consensus experience, and self-awareness. It started at first with small-scale collections of organs, and is currently seemingly happening in large-scale collections of minds. The internet is starting to circulate memes of "Is the internet becoming self-aware?" which to me suggests it is, although it could go either way.

    It reads like you've keyed into this, but at the same time, I think it's a fairly obscure idea, and probably outside someone's intuitive metaphysics if they've never been exposed to Whitehead or any of the people inspired by him (like Deleuze! Thanks for pointing him out).

    Also, (I'm going to be a massive hypocrite for just telling MSM to read metaphorically 2 posts ago but whatever) when you use a sociobiology world like "meta-organism" for its technical application and then turn around and use a chemistry word like "entropy" in a poetic sense, it becomes difficult to tell if I'm supposed to be reading your writing at a literal or metaphoric level.
    Perhaps a progression from chemical to abstract, while maintaining literality. We start with chemical entropy pumping to maintain relative levels of biological integrity, but I see it as a natural progression that we (and termites, and beavers) build structures in our environments. This is still a kind of literal information pumping, by offloading chaos elsewhere in the environment in order to create structure and predictability in an area of interest, but that might be a very naive and tenous leap on my part.

    when we first met and were shooting the shit about Barthes and Amano and whatever, I had little trouble following you, but maybe it was because I at least somewhat understood your frame of reference...

    in any case, I think you're a pretty solid dude, so don't I hope you don't construe this as a personal attack or anything
    I think that's the case. Plus I probably wasn't writing in a frenzied haste.

    Anyway, no personal attack construed. I respect your intelligence, and you've never failed to maintain a high standard of propriety. Plus, I like you, so no offence is likely to be taken by me.

    scribbles in the dark

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    Quote Originally Posted by Holon View Post
    "Process God" is the idea of some metaphysical suggestive will, like the God Whitehead identified, and in contrast to some static Christian God. Sorry, super lazy shorthand.

    To address the meat of that section, if there is some Whiteheadian process will that is equally shaping/being shaped by the processes of the Universe, at least in this little corner, it's starting to wake up to itself. I think it's interesting that there are consistent patterns of things achieving predatory conscious awareness of a consensus experience, and self-awareness. It started at first with small-scale collections of organs, and is currently seemingly happening in large-scale collections of minds. The internet is starting to circulate memes of "Is the internet becoming self-aware?" which to me suggests it is, although it could go either way.

    It reads like you've keyed into this, but at the same time, I think it's a fairly obscure idea, and probably outside someone's intuitive metaphysics if they've never been exposed to Whitehead or any of the people inspired by him (like Deleuze! Thanks for pointing him out).
    Ah, it was a problem of reference.


    Yes, I've realized something similar, but mainly it came from reading E.O. Wilson's superorganism musings, plus Ernst Haeckel's colonial theory at the micro-level, with Dawkins' memetic theory, Oswald Spengler's and Amy Chua's civilization studies, some cybernetics propaganda from the military industrial complex and some operations research texts, and of course Darwin and the Austrian school, forming secondary and tertiary references. (Plus probably a whole bunch of other smart people I'm failing to credit.)

    And of course, there's this great clip from Nixon:




    Deleuze had nothing to do with it. I couldn't get past his Frenchness. French intellectuals often seem to me be so enamored with how chic their work is that it immediately becomes dated...but I guess one would expect no less from the most fashionable city on Earth!

    The word "God", on the face of it, though, doesn't appear to me to be the kind of intelligence we are headed for. That seems to imply both a unified and benevolent force. The rule seems to be that things evolve, and for things to evolve, there must be competition. So I would predict a multitude of intelligences slugging it out (which might already be happening, if you consider states and corporations to be these kind of intelligences) as opposed to just one consciousness. There can be no God, but perhaps an asymptotic approach towards one. For an example, even though our species has effectively "won" this level of evolutionary competition, there's still AIDS and Ebola and all kinds of other nasties wiping us out in droves. The fight continues! Though these consciousnesses should start to appear like gods to us, since we are basically the equivalent of their gut bacteria.

    The benevolence implied with "God" I also find troubling, albeit to a lesser degree. I doubt we'll end up with Skynet, (again, they need us, we're their gut bacteria) but the intelligences might start experimenting with "antibiotics" to take down what they see as malignant growths or pathogens. This could be a painful period for humanity (Once again, this may already be happening, depending on your perspective, with these unmanned drones blowing up the postulated enemies of corporatism and technology...)

    But thank you for making me aware of Whitehead, I'll be sure to check him out. I think I've heard the name before. (God bless him, having the name of a pustule for a surname...must have had a hard life lol)









    Quote Originally Posted by Holon View Post
    Perhaps a progression from chemical to abstract, while maintaining literality. We start with chemical entropy pumping to maintain relative levels of biological integrity, but I see it as a natural progression that we (and termites, and beavers) build structures in our environments. This is still a kind of literal information pumping, by offloading chaos elsewhere in the environment in order to create structure and predictability in an area of interest, but that might be a very naive and tenous leap on my part.
    No, I think it's quite an astute observation once unpacked.
    Last edited by Whoobie77; 09-17-2014 at 05:50 AM.

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