My Photo

« Sunday Reflection | Main | Rob Bell »

July 30, 2006



how do we deal with folks who accept the words and actions of those who have no decency?


Good question, what do you think?

Philip  Koplin

Maybe it was just a mistype, but the instinct for survival is not in itself "basest," but "basic." Ideologies, religious and otherwise, sometimes appeal to it directly, sometimes try to convince people that something exists that makes it worth overcoming (though this raises the question, What does it mean to act without regard to preservation of the "self"?). The challenge is to distinguish valid from fraudulent appeals to the instinct for self-preservation.


goes back to goebbles, doesn't it?

"....we will at least have the wisdom to elect...."
keyword: elect.
when elections in the strongest, most free nation on the planet are stolen and rubber stamped by the supreme court of the land, there is no such action by the people such as an "election"....

as for those who will not be swayed to think other than bush and company are doing a bang-up job (no pun intended, but it's fun anyway, isn't it?), there's an entire body of psychological research that suggests that strongly held beliefs are rarely if ever changed, even in the face of contrary evidence. there's too much invested, too much at stake in the beliefs strongly held to let go.

what DOES it mean to act without regard to the preservation of the self?


Thnaks, Philip. What I meant to convey was that the "reptilian brain" is a reference to appealing to our basest instincts, then I only referenced survival as a strong instinct. I think, though, your point is correct in that what I meant to say on this was not very clear. Thanks for pointing that out.


Zero, good comments as well. On your last question, it would mean to desire someone else's protection more and to act in accord with that, right?


the huge sacrifice i witnessed in my life was a kid i went to school with. he was a medic in vietnam. while tending a wounded soldier, a grenade or something landed near them. instead of getting to safety, this wonderful, kind, sensitive boy threw his body over the wounded soldier and took the hit. he was killed. who knows if the wounded soldier he was trying to save lived through his injuries. my friend was awarded the medal of honor. he wouldn't have cared. maybe, but probably not, it helped his family. don't we, each time we act in a way that benefits someone else, think of them above ourselves? even in the smallest ways we open ourselves up to all sorts of emotional, psychological, physical
peril by thinking of others. even offering someone a smile can wound. maybe you can think about this on your vacation and respond. (this is how my brain works allllllllll the time.....)


Yes, I think you are right on both parts. The question, I suppose, is the risk of hurt worth it?


can we really know the answer to that question?



The comments to this entry are closed.