Thursday, April 7, 2011

More on the Fundamental Problems

Over a month ago, I talked about what I call the two fundamental problems, getting people to think and getting people to empathize.  I still see these as the two biggest issues humanity faces, so I decided to set up my other blog, Cross Trained Mind, toward these issues.  In the next month, I'll start posting on it again, writing about ways to increase your own reasoning and empathy.

Stay tuned.

1 comment:

  1. I can't help but think about 'getting people to care'. This probably fits evenly into getting people to empathize but that's just not the way I'm conceptualizing it right now.

    Even when confronted with situations where people are given the clear option to care, we often find excuses not to, excuses which can sound smart at the time.When we burned out the car's engine, the excuse was that we needed to get home before we could do anything about the high temperature reading. But if we had stopped driving soon enough and slept in the car, we would still have it. Right now our neighbors have months worth of trash scattering about their yard, and I'm sure their excuse is that the landlord hasn't taken care of everything he should have (their doorknob, for example, has fallen out), so they'll leave him with a mess. But obviously that trash is inconvenient fir others as well.

    The urge not to care comes from the disconnected nature of our minds and bodies. I feel like evolution did a risky thing, creating 'universal' minds, because our very generality let's us choose what to care about. And it's often other stuff than having kids - a problem evolution must constantly fight with is about. But more generally we are capable of choosing just to 'accept things' and be happy engaging only a small portion of our intelligence with real problems.

    I have trouble engaging with problems at times, especially if it means bothering people directly. When I asked professors for recommendation letters for grad school I had to convince myself beforehand, 'this has to be done right now'. I guess I also have a lot if trouble convincing myself time or timing matters.