Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Philosophy of Life

One can develop or select a philosophy of life to direct our life, or the remainder of our life. That is essentially a religion, but philosophy tends to discount any mysticism. So we can select something, some philosophical concepts and allow those concepts to control our decisions going forward. OK. But one concept is not enough, even if we knew the outcome. For what would we trade a few thousand days for? Occupation? Well some occupations shorten our life expectation. Working in construction for one. Not through just on the job hazards, but also through the full on work, full idle cycle of exhaustion/boredom, boom/bust, what ever you call it. And not just construction, oil, energy, even auto. It is the boom and bust that we have seen since industrialization. And does philosophy help, well it can, if we are to allow our philosophy or religion to control. But not religion, for religion requires belief without evidence or logic.

We can start with life as the criteria to judge against. Anything that detracts from life expediency, or quality of life, may need to be modified or examined at least. But even then there can be conflict between what we see as quality of life and quantity, aka life expediency. We may need to make a philosophical choice, are we going to risk life with drugs, alcohol, food, exercise, work, recreation, down time, hobbies... it all becomes a philosophical question, after we take time to actually make a formal decision. Much of the time we just go with the flow... not consider the choice, and just do the next thing that shows up.

So once we define the quality of life we wish to live, the quantity becomes a partly dependent variable, more or less, on that choice. So as we age, life choice become more clear, some things should just not be done anymore, and should not have been done in the past. We were in error. Oh well, that is history. We learn and go forward into today, living differently, as we actively make decisions based on what we know, and what we think is the best choice. We can grow the philosophy, the rationally prepared criteria for our future decisions; yet we should always be examining this philosophy, there may be better philosophies to find or discover, in some cases. Fixity of philosophy is also a danger, not seeing better when it is presented. That is one more shortcoming of religion, the skeptic movement, Stoicism, what have you.

Compassion is an important virtue, but it is often twisted into altruism, an evil. Why should I be concerned about someones life if they are not? (as a response to the drug problem, for example)

Cooperation is the virtue, not doing for others, or providing for others. But life has become a struggle; we are living in an over populated world. We need to rally look to find opportunities. Oh well, in the end we all just die anyway.  


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